Sanders and his rival for the 2020 presidential nomination of the Democratic Party has been pushing to increase high-speed internet access to rural and low-income Americans, said it has become a necessity to succeed in school and business. Senator Bernie Sanders believes that access to high-speed Internet is a basic human right and if elected president, he vows that every household in the United States will have access to affordable broadband by the end of his first term. The proposal would also put an end to "internet service provider and cable monopolies" and stop major cable and internet providers from "anticompetitive mergers", according to Sanders' campaign.
"High-speed Internet service must be treated as the new electricity - a public utility that everyone deserves as a basic human right", the plan states. "It should be a public good for all, not another price-gouging profit machine for Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon".
Visual learner? Check out BroadbandNow's chart of all the candidates' plans.
The High-Speed Internet for All proposal suggests giving local and state governments $150bn in grants and aid to create publicly owned broadband networks. Senator Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., And South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg released plans to invest at least $ 80 billion to rural broadband, while former Vice President Joe Biden has proposed putting $ 20 billion to expand rural Internet access.
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Sanders also wants to raise FCC's definition of broadband, which is now 25Mbit/s down and 3Mbit/s - he wants it to be 100Mbit/s down and 10Mbit/s up. 3x funding for rural areas.
Sanders also wants to set aside $7.5 billion to increase high-speed broadband in Native American communities nationwide and increase funding for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Office of Native Affairs and Policy. He adds that large broadband providers incorrectly report coverage, "obscure their prices, and often don't deliver promised speeds".
As for the cable industry, they are keeping their reactions and opinions about this close to the vest at the moment - cable operators and cable industry organizations contacted Friday afternoon either declined comment or said they still needed more time to review Sanders's plan before providing comment.