Press Releases

NDC Leaders Call Out GOP for Rejecting Funding for Bipartisan Affordable Connectivity Program

Washington, D.C. — Today, New Democrat Coalition Chair Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Freshman Leadership Representative Nikki Budzinski (IL-13) issued a statement after the Republican-led House Rules Committee rejected Rep. Budzinski’s bipartisan amendment to the 2025 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which would have funded the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). If tens of millions of Americans lose affordable internet access after losing the ACP benefit, our military will be unable to meet their recruitment goals, jeopardizing our readiness and national security.

The ACP officially ran out of funding at the end of May after House Republicans opposed New Dem-championed efforts to pass additional funding so Americans could continue accessing affordable internet coverage. 

“When the Affordable Connectivity Program ended last month, families across the country faced an uncomfortable reality: pay an unaffordable internet bill, or lose internet access altogether. While families are grappling with this decision, Congressional Republicans continue to block any and all efforts to fund the ACP, despite its impact on more than 23 million households. 

“This program is helping Americans in every state, red, blue and purple alike. It is unacceptable that Republicans continue to stand in the way of commonsense solutions to improve Americans’ lives. The internet is an essential utility and is absolutely necessary to succeed in a 21st-century economy and society. That’s why New Dems have worked tirelessly to extend the ACP and repeatedly called on Republicans to join our efforts.

“Today, we again call on Speaker Johnson and House Republicans to take immediate action to fund this vital program and restore affordable internet access to the American people.”

New Dems have consistently worked to save the ACP.

In October 2023, Chair Kuster, Rep. Veasey, and Rep. Craig led 70 New Dems in a letter to Congressional leadership in both chambers to include ACP funding in any upcoming government funding package.

In February 2024, knowing the ACP would expire in April without additional funding, Chair Kuster and Leadership Member Marc Veasey (TX-33) implored House Republicans to join Democrats at the table and prevent ACP-enrolled households from losing their benefit.

In April 2024, New Dem Members Angie Craig (MN-02) and Nikki Budzinski led 95 Coalition Members in a letter to House Speaker Mike Johnson calling on House Republican Leadership to take immediate bipartisan action to fund the ACP before it lapsed on April 30th. 

That same month, New Dem leaders also held a press conference to call for the program’s extension.