Lafayette Journal & Courier: “data suggest many of Indiana’s schoolchildren and adults who preferred to work from home spent the pandemic with sub-par access to high-speed internet, particularly in the state’s least-wealthy counties.”
Jim Baird and Mike Braun default to INGOP’s extreme partisanship to oppose the American Jobs Plan
INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Democratic Party, the organization that advocates for the future of Indiana and its families, today called on Republicans in Indiana’s Congressional delegation to join their Democratic colleagues in support of President Joe Biden’s American Jobs Plan and the opportunity to revitalize Indiana’s infrastructure. Yesterday’s story in the Lafayette Journal & Courier exposed why Indiana needs the Jobs Plan: too many Hoosier families lack affordable broadband internet service that’s needed to succeed in a 21st Century America. In fact, about 48.4-percent of Hoosiers live in a community with only one internet provider, with 12.4-percent of Hoosier families living without broadband altogether.
The American Jobs Plan will solve the longstanding problem the Indiana Republican Party has campaigned on for years, however, Republicans like U.S. Senator Mike Braun and Congressman Jim Baird have already put their extreme partisanship ahead of the Jobs Plan. Jim Baird signaled “taxes” were the reason he’s against broadband expansion – despite voting to raise taxes himself in 2017 and supporting the GOP’s tax law that gave a tax cut to the richest Americans. Mike Braun opposed the Jobs Plan because Democrats also plan to pass an accompanying measure to update veterans health care clinics and wipe out childcare deserts. The Indiana Republican Party once again confirmed they have no direction and would rather fall back on a form of partisanship that does nothing but hold Hoosier families back from success.
Indiana Democrats look forward to passing the upcoming American Jobs Plan, because it’s time to create a better future for the state and its families. This is what Hoosiers read in Lafayette this week:
Lafayette Journal & Courier: In Indiana, many people lack broadband access, despite needing it for remote work, school
“As federal officials debate pouring billions of dollars into broadband access, data suggest many of Indiana’s schoolchildren and adults who preferred to work from home spent the pandemic with sub-par access to high-speed internet, particularly in the state’s least-wealthy counties.
Advocates say the “digital divide” across the United States is due largely to two factors: a lack of internet infrastructure in the country’s rural reaches and the relatively high cost of broadband that has made the service unaffordable for many in urban centers.” […]
“…Yet in about half of the state measured by Microsoft — 47 of 92 counties — no more than 22% of households actually have high-speed access, a USA TODAY analysis shows.” […]
“The Biden administration estimates 30 million Americans live in areas that lack broadband infrastructure to provide minimally acceptable speeds.” […]
“In Indiana, 12.4% of residents don’t have adequate broadband infrastructure and 48.4% live in areas with only one internet provider, according to the White House.” […]
“The proportions of Indiana households that have high-speed access varies widely: In Crawford County, it’s just 2%; in Benton County, it’s 4%; and in Switzerland County, it’s 5%. Leading the state are Hamilton County with 63%, Porter County with 59% and Johnson County with 57%.
A USA TODAY analysis of data nationwide found a wide gap between rich and poor counties, as measured by median household income. The chasm varies depending on state and county.”