Stories

David McCabe Apr 11, 2017
SaveSave story

The partisan (and income) split over paying for broadband

The Pew Research Center is out with new data that shows wealthy U.S. adults are more likely to say that the statement that "home internet service is affordable enough that nearly every household should be able to buy service on their own" describes their views, rather than "the government should provide subsidies to help low-income Americans purchase high-speed home internet service." There's a sharp divide by party, too.

Why it matters: There's probably a fight coming over the future of the FCC's "Lifeline" program, which uses fees collected from consumers to fund subsidies for low-income people to access internet and phone service. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has floated the idea of adding a co-pay to the service and capping its budget, but said he doesn't intend to remove broadband from the program entirely.

Data: Pew Research Center; Note: "Dem" and "GOP" includes respondents "leaning Dem" and "leaning GOP"; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios