As we all celebrate the White House announcement that 20 ISPs have agreed to $30 plans for participating households of the Affordable Connectivity Program, NDIA and the SHLB Coalition have also sent a letter to President Joe Biden encouraging concerted action to promote the nomination of Gigi Sohn as the fifth commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission.
Ms. Sohn has been a long-time advocate for internet freedom, consumer protection, and digital inclusivity. Though steadfast in her principles, she has a deep and realistic understanding of the digital marketplace and its practical and economic challenges. In turn, she recognizes the need to work with others from all sides of every issue to achieve a more open, affordable, and privacy-protective communications landscape.
The FCC cannot move forward on several significant public interest issues until Ms. Sohn is confirmed by the full U.S. Senate. Reform of the federal Universal Service Fund, the success of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) and impactful rulemaking on digital discrimination. In short, the Biden Administration’s stated goal of ensuring affordable broadband for all and solving the digital divide is in jeopardy unless Ms. Sohn is confirmed in the near future.