Document dump to House panel may hasten arrival of new noms


Charles GrassleyThe FCC has honored the request of House Communications Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) to provide documents relating to its controversial LightSquared proceeding. Walden in turn has promised to make the documents available to Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who in turn may finally see fit to allow a full Senate vote on the confirmation of FCC commissioner nominees Ajit Pai and Jessica Rosenworcel.

A total of 13,000 pages of material are said to have been sent to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, according to a report in The Hill. The FCC also said it would continue to cooperate with the committee.

Republicans have wondered whether LightSquared’ultimately-unsuccessful proposal to build out a 4G network was treated with improper favoritism by the current Commission.

Grassley has long sought pertinent FCC documents and interviews with key FCC employees as he investigated the situation, and the FCC has turned him down, citing rules which say that the FCC is to cooperate only with legislators who are on an appropriate committee. For the FCC, that would be Commerce, of which Grassley is not a member.

He will be granted access to the documents by Walden and his committee colleagues.
However, that may not be enough to get Grassley to release his hold on Pai and Rosenworcel, who easily gained the Commerce Committee’s recommendation for confirmation. Grassley said if he still has questions after going over the documents, the hold may continue.

Stay tuned.