Senate Communications subcommittee members named


For awhile there, when broadcast ownership and indecency were extremely hot Capitol Hill topics, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation ceased naming a subcommittee to vet such issues and handled them in the full committee. Those days are past, and committee leadership has gotten around to naming members to handle such issues in the 112th Congress.

The full committee is chaired by Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), with Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) serving as ranking member.

John Kerry is coming back as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet, with John Ensign (R-NV) serving as Ranking Member. Democrats will have only a one-vote advantage on the panel.

Here is the full roster.


* John F. Kerry (D-MA) (Chairman)

* Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI)

* Barbara Boxer (D-CA)

* Bill Nelson (D-FL)

* Maria Cantwell (D-WA)

* Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ)

* Mark Pryor (D-AR)

* Claire McCaskill (D-MO)

* Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)

* Tom Udall (D-NM)

* Mark Warner (D-VA)

* Mark Begich (D-AK)

* John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV (D-WV) (ex officio)


* John Ensign (R-NV) (Ranking Member)

* Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

* Jim DeMint (R-SC)

* John Thune (R-SD)

* Roger Wicker (R-MS)

* Johnny Isakson (R-GA)

* Roy Blunt (R-MO)

* John Boozman (R-AR)

* Patrick J. Toomey (R-PA)

* Marco Rubio (R-FL)

* Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)

* Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) (ex officio)

RBR-TVBR observation: The Republican side of the full committee and the communications panel are rife with opportunity when the 113th Congress is seated. Hutchison has already indicated she will be leaving the Senate, and the scandal-plagued Ensign is looking at an uncertain future within his own party in the face of a likely primary challenge. The jockeying for position in 2013 may make for an interesting side show this year.

Also note the presence of no less than four freshmen on the Republican side of the Communications Subcommittee. Boozman, Toomey, Rubio and Ayotte are all newcomers. Many of the Democrats haven’t been around all that much longer – Udall, Begich and Warner all came in the Democratic wave of 2008. We’re not sure if it means anything, but fresh blood is in good supply on this particular panel.