A number of Washington denizens came forward with words to honor the career of Rick Boucher (D-VA), who is currently Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet. While some Democrats will be downgraded to Ranking Member, it is Boucher’s fate to be downgraded to private citizen in the wake of his defeat at the polls 11/2/10.
FCC Commissioner Michael Copps was one of the first to put out a statement. He said, “I was saddened last night to learn of the electoral loss of Representative Rick Boucher in the House. He has been an extraordinary public servant and a great leader across the whole gamut of telecommunications issues. His dedication to broadband, his leadership to reform Universal Service to make sure the wonders of advanced telecommunications are available to all our citizens, and his uncommon ability to bring contesting parties to the table to forge workable compromises are the stuff of legend.”
Copps continued, “I hope Rick will keep speaking out on these issues and will share his wise counsel and good judgment with us and with the new leadership of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet. Meanwhile Rick should derive enormous satisfaction from a job well and extraordinarily done.”
Calling Boucher a “moderating force, Gigi Sohn of watchdog Public Knowledge said, “Whatever the final results of this election night, nothing will be more shocking or sad for Public Knowledge and me personally then the defeat of Rep. Rick Boucher (D-Va), the current Chair of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology & the Internet. Rep. Boucher, widely recognized as one of the most tech-savvy and intelligent members of Congress, has long been an advocate for consumers on a wide variety of communications and intellectual property issues.”
Matt Polka of the American Cable Association also issued a statement. He said, “Rep. Rick Boucher was at the center of American telecommunications policy for nearly three decades, a profoundly transformative period covering the break up of AT&T and the explosive arrival of the global Internet. Rep. Boucher understood that good policy is made when concept confronts opportunity, and he went about the business of lawmaking with erudition, calm civility and intellectual rigor in an effort to locate the most desirable outcome for the nation and his rural Virginia district. His door always remained open to ACA members for an exchange of ideas and a search for common ground to improve conditions in unserved and underserved communities. ACA salutes Rep. Boucher on his long and distinguished career on Capitol Hill and looks forward to working with him again to continue to build a better communications future for hometown America.”