Reps urge FCC to keep Comcast/NBCU review on schedule


Maxine Waters (D-CA) and many other legislators are on record requesting that the FCC takes its review of the proposed merger between Comcast and NBC Universal on the road for public input. But two other representatives, one from each party, are asking the Commission to abide by the shot clock, and suggesting that it approve the transaction.

The members of the House both sit on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and its Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet, have often taken prominent roles in communications business before Congress. They are Fred Upton (R-MI) and Mike Doyle (D-PA). Upton was previously the top Republican on the subcommittee.

They argue that the public has plenty of time to comment on the merger during the normal window, which provides time for comments, replies and replies to replies and stretches out for 90 days.

They pointed out that there have also been 15 hours of Congressional testimony on the merger already.
The duo also presented their opinion of the merger, blessing it as a “pro-consumer and pro-competitive transaction.”

According to The Hill, a staffer for Waters said that she is not backing down from the request for public input, said that holding the hearings could be scheduled within the confines of the 180-day clock.

The FCC is said to be considering procedures for reviewing the merger, which may include public hearings, but has no comments on any specifics. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski did just hire a new special counsel for transactions, John Flynn, who will take the lead role in consideration of the merger.