New FCC nominees: Let the hostage taking begin


Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) has a bone to pick with the FCC regarding a request for documents regarding an issue involving broadband company LightSquared. Since the documents have not been forthcoming, Grassley has decided that nominees to fill two of the FCC’s 8th Floor offices also will not be forthcoming.

Here is what Grassley had to say on the topic in a for-the-record statement: “Mr. President.  I, Senator Chuck Grassley, intend to object to proceeding to the nomination of Jessica Rosenworcel and Ajit Pai to be commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission for the following reason. I will object to proceeding to the nomination because the FCC continues to stonewall a document request I submitted to the FCC over six months ago on April 27, 2011, regarding their actions related to LightSquared and Harbinger Capital.  Since then, I have repeated my request to the FCC through letters I sent on July 5th and September 8th and the FCC continues to deny my request for documents.  During the course of my correspondence with the FCC, the FCC has made it clear that it will not voluntarily turn over documents to the 99.6 percent of the Members of Congress and Senators who do not chair a committee with direct jurisdiction over the FCC.  As I said in my September 8, 2011, letter, their actions are misguided and unsupportable.”

RBR-TVBR observation: The LightSquared issue does not concern broadcasters in any direct way, nor does it have anything whatsoever to do with the qualifications of the two FCC nominees. When you hear the arcane rules of the Senate mentioned, this is one of them – the ability of just one person to bring the gears of government to a grinding halt for any reason whatsoever.