By Julian Hattem - 01/14/15 04:22 PM EST
President Obama’s call for more cities and towns to create their own broadband Internet services to compete with private companies like Comcast is meeting stiff opposition from many Republicans.Republicans were swift to denounce the president on Wednesday, as he spoke in Cedar Falls, Iowa — a town that has created its own municipally-owned broadband Internet provider.
"In Tennessee we have a term to describe people like President Obama — tone-deaf,” Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) said in a statement.
“At a time when Americans think the biggest problem facing our nation today is big government, you would think he'd have gotten the message by now,” she added. “We don't need unelected bureaucrats like FCC [Federal Communications Commission] Chairman Tom Wheeler dictating to our states what they can and can't do with respect to protecting their limited taxpayer dollars and private enterprises.”
In 19 states, there are laws on the books limiting local governments from building out their own municipal Internet services.The FCC has been asked by two cities — in North Carolina and in Tennessee — to override those laws. Obama on Wednesday urged the FCC to do just that.