Standing at a deserted train station in Whiteville, Clinton told several thousand people in southeastern North Carolina that the Internet could assist rural America more than the railroad, highways, and electricity have in the past, Reuters says.
Clinton told his rural audience – most of whom had been excluded from the country’s recent economic boom – that the Internet could vastly improve their communities.
“The Internet collapses time and distance… it can be this community’s ticket for a better tomorrow,” Clinton said.
Whiteville is the county seat of Columbus county –an area with 12 percent unemployment. High-speed Internet access in Columbus county costs about seven times the price it would cost in Raleigh, Reuters says.
A new report from the Department of Commerce and the Department of Agriculture shows rural areas lag behind urban areas in broadband availability.
This was Clinton’s second trip in two weeks to spread the U.S. economic boom to rural areas and disadvantaged populations equalizing technology access, Reuters says.