Vice President Al Gore, attending a technology conference in Washington late in February, lashed out at opponents of the eRate, pledging to defend the program and charging that legislators who seek to restrict billions in technology discounts for schools and libraries are threatening the future of the nation's neediest students.

"There are those who would pick the money from the pockets of our poorest schools," Gore said. "I would like to say to them loudly and clearly: Your effort to block the eRate is an effort to ration information and ration education, and it would...

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