Broadband Event Is Launch Of Rural Tours By Top Officials

President Barack Obama has chosen to launch what will be a series of rural visits by top administration officials with a broadband event featuring Vice President Joe Biden, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and FCC chairman Julius Genachowski.

The trip had been reported earlier in the day, but the president put it in context with a statement Tuesday evening (June 30), saying it would be the first of a series of visits by cabinet secretaries and other administration officials who would "fan out across the nation to hold a series of discussions on how communities, states, and the federal government can work together to help strengthen rural America."

They have been asked to report back to Obama on the state of rural America and how it can be strengthened.

"A healthy American economy depends on a prosperous rural America," said the president. "Rural America is vast and diverse, and different communities face different challenges and opportunities. That's why we're going out to hear directly from the people of rural America about their needs and concerns and what my administration can do to support them."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.