January 06, 2020

Cortez Masto Highlights Senator McConnell’s Obstruction of Rural Broadband Bill in the Senate

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today spoke out about how Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has blocked progress on legislation to expand rural broadband services and connectivity, which passed the House of Representatives in May.

“Leader McConnell said last week that he wants to get back to work for the American people. Bringing the House-passed ACCESS BROADBAND Act to the floor for a vote would be one way to prove he is serious. In the 21st century, a reliable internet connection is a vital tool for everyone – from entrepreneurs looking to break into new markets and students applying for college, to first responders and doctors working to save lives. We should be doing everything we can to ensure our rural communities have access to high quality broadband. The passage of this legislation would help schools, small businesses and local governments more easily access federal funding to support the expansion of critical wireless services and broadband infrastructure.”

Throughout the month of January, Senator Cortez Masto will highlight critical bipartisan legislation languishing in Leader McConnell’s legislative graveyard. Senator Cortez Masto is urging the Republican Leader to end his obstruction of legislation that would help working families and get back to work for the American people.


Senate Majority Leader McConnell has refused to let the Senate take action on hundreds of pieces of legislation to improve Americans’ lives, including a vital piece of legislation aimed at improving broadband access in our rural and underserved communities. The following bill has been passed by the House of Representatives, but has not been taken up by the full Senate:

  • The ACCESS BROADBAND Act: This legislation fosters the development and growth of broadband resources for businesses as well as underserved urban and rural communities in Nevada and throughout the country.

There are also bills that were introduced in the Senate with widespread support but have not been taken up by the Majority. These include:

  • The Digital Equity Act: This bill funds broadband expansion projects and helps ensure all Americans have the digital literacy they need to thrive in our 21st century economy.
  • The Moving FIRST Act: This legislation provides funding for innovative transportation projects that often include broadband developments in underserved urban and rural communities.