The U.S. Senate tonight voted 52 to 41 to reconfirm FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to a second five-year term at the agency. The vote followed party lines, following floor speeches from Democrats and Republicans.
Democrats blamed Pai for trying to overturn Net Neutrality and favor media consolidation with the pending Sinclair acquisition of Tribune. Republicans cited Pai’s work to increase FCC transparency, ease broadband deployment and his initiatives to bridge the rural broadband gap.
Before the vote, groups like the Wireless Infrastructure Association urged the Senate to act. WIA President/CEO Jonathan Adelstein called Pai “eminently qualified for the position” while Telecommunications Industry Association SVP, Government Affairs, Cinnamon Rogers called Pai’s work “essential” to underpinning of 5G wireless networks and the Internet of Things.
By: Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief
October 2, 2017