The roster of Republicans serving as subcommittee chairs on the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation have been named, and the honor for broadcasters’ most relevant panel, the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet, is going to Jim DeMint (R-SC).
DeMint has not made a name for himself in matters related to broadcast or communications policy in particular. It is not a major item on the list of issues posted on his Senate website. However, he does address developments in the field that have taken place since the Communications Act was passed in 1934, and expresses his general belief that if it’s a regulation, it should usually be undone.
He states, “The common theme of all these developments is that they are the product of a dynamic marketplace. Entrepreneurs and investors took risks and offered choices to consumers who were frustrated with the quality, choice, and cost involved with old-style, overly-regulated telephone, radio, TV and cable service. The clear benefit of these less regulated pockets in the communications industry has been increased innovation and choice for consumers looking for the best value for their hard-earned dollars.”
The full committee Republican leader is Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), who has announced her plans to retire when her term expires at the end of the 2012 election cycle. Which means that there is a fair chance that one of the subcommittee RMs could wind up atop the full committee, although there is also a fair chance a senior Republican may slide over from outside this coveted Committee assignment. Here is the full roster.
* Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard: Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME)
* Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet: Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC)
* Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security : Sen. John Thune (R-SD)
* Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure,
Safety, and Security: Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS)
* Subcommittee on Competitiveness, Innovation, and Export Promotion: Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO)
* Subcommittee on Science and Space: Sen. John Boozman (R-AR)
* Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance: Sen. Patrick Toomey (R-PA)