Presidential races

O’Malley calls Wi-Fi ‘a human right’

Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a potential Democratic White House contender, said in an interview published Wednesday that “Wi-Fi is a human right.”

{mosads}O’Malley, a two-term governor who has fundraised vigorously for Democrats running in midterms races this year, said in an interview with CNN that he can relate to his 20-something daughters.

“I am noticing a generational shift. While baby boomers were led to believe that sometimes our prosperity comes from separating from other[s], people under 40 believe that it will come from being closer to others,” he said.

O’Malley said young people are no longer following the path of older generations who specialized in certain skills to attain a comfortable suburban life.

“Young people have flipped that on its head. Younger people are choosing to live in cities. They realize that connections to each other are making us better. That Wi-Fi is a human right. That proximity is important to entrepreneurship, access to capital and talent and diversity,” O’Malley said.

“There is an opportunity there for us as a nation to embrace that new perspective,” he added.

The United Nations declared Internet access a human right in a 2011 report, saying that the Internet “facilitates the realization of a range of other human rights.”

“By vastly expanding the capacity of individuals to enjoy their right to freedom of opinion and expression, which is an “enabler” of other human rights, the Internet boosts economic, social and political development, and contributes to the progress of humankind as a whole,” the report said.

O’Malley polls in single digits behind other potential Democratic White House contenders including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

A CNN/ORC poll released last month found that O’Malley would draw a mere 2 percent of registered Democrats in the early caucus state of Iowa. Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders, who caucuses with Democrats, got 5 percent support in that poll.

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