Senator Plans To Block FCC Nominations
November 4, 2011 at 4:47 AM (PT)
Sen. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R-IA) said THURSDAY that he will object to the nominations of JESSICA ROSENWORCEL and AJIT PAI to the FCC because the agency has thus far refused to turn over documents related to the controversial waiver grant to wireless operator LIGHTSQUARED.
THE HILL reports that GRASSLEY said he will place a hold on the nominations when they hit the Senate floor, saying, "I will object to proceeding to the nomination because the FCC continues to stonewall a document request I submitted to the FCC over six months ago on APRIL 27th, 2011, regarding their actions related to LIGHTSQUARED and HARBINGER CAPITAL. It not only sets a dangerous precedent for a federal agency to unilaterally set the rules on how it engages with Congress -- it also prevents any meaningful ability for the vast majority of Congress to inform themselves of how an agency works."
LIGHTSQUARED's proposed wireless broadband network has been held up because of interference with the nation's GPS system. The situation became a target for Republican lawmakers when e-mails showed that LIGHTSQUARED officials had been in contact with the WHITE HOUSE about the issue, and GRASSLEY has demanded that Congress be given access to all documents related to the case.