Commerce Secretary Raimondo declares Biden admin is 'putting equity at the center of everything we do'
Raimondo said broadband is 'the gateway to economic opportunity'
Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo asserted Tuesday that the Biden administration is placing equity first and foremost in its decision-making.
Speaking during a briefing at the White House, Raimondo addressed the administration's recent infrastructure bill pushing to expand the reach of broadband internet.
"Broadband is the gateway to economic opportunity. And so, in order to open that gateway, we’re putting equity at the center of everything we do," Raimondo said.
"I will say: To truly transform our economy into one that works for all Americans and one that will make our country more competitive on the world stage, we have to make investments in a way that is equitable and just," she also said.
"And we view this lens across all of the work we do at the Commerce Department, and it will be particularly front-and-center with the broadband work that we will be doing."
Raimondo explained that she is "particularly passionate" about broadband, having been the governor of Rhode Island during the pandemic, when she said many children in her state were unable to go to school or see a therapist in person.
"It is heartbreaking, and it showed, in a very real and human way, how broad — how essential broadband is. And the fact of the matter is: We have to close the digital divide. Period."
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During the same briefing, Raimondo also called on Congress to fully fund an initiative aimed at increasing the domestic production of semiconductors amid a global shortage of essential components.
The Biden administration has faced pressure to address a chip shortage that has snarled production of cars, consumer electronic devices, such as computers and smartphones, and various other items in recent months.
Fox News' Thomas Barrabi contributed to this report.