Based on the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and the Cable v. Brand X Supreme Court case, cable providers are classified as "Information" while telecom services (like AT&T) are classified as "Telecommunications," thus subjecting each to very different sets of regulations.
As offerings by the varying service providers homogenize (internet, phone, television, mobile data, etc), traditionally classified telcos are heavily burdened by much more pro-competitive regulation.
Cable has an unfair advantage over traditional telco's because they are not subject to the same regulation based on archaic classifications dating back to the Great Depression. This has resulted in large-scale regional cable monopolies that has destroyed consumer choice for much of the country.
For broadband to become ubiquitous, affordable, and reliable, reclassifying internet-age services so that regulation becomes unified is absolutely essential to a healthy national broadband plan.