Veteran telecom lawyer Anna Gomez has been nominated by President Joe Biden to serve on the Federal Communications Commission, a five-member regulatory body stuck in a 2-2 deadlock.
In addition to the nomination for Gomez, Biden announced the re-nomination of commissioners Geoffrey Starks and Brendan Carr to serve additional 5-year terms.
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Gomez, a former FCC and Senate staffer, is serving as a telecom policy adviser in the U.S. State Department. She also served as deputy administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, a key agency within the Commerce Department involved in improving internet accessibility.
For more than two years, the FCC has been in a stalemate, which has significantly limited its ability to weigh in on all but the most anodyne topics. Commissioners are nominated by the president, meaning the regulatory body should be in Democratic control with Biden in the White House. Gigi Sohn, a longtime Washington presence and veteran regulator, withdrew her nomination earlier this year after intense opposition from Republican activists and industry lobbyists. Sohn had been part of an effort led by President Barack Obama to achieve net neutrality, a policy opposed by major broadband providers and telecom firms. During confirmation hearings, Senate Republicans said Sohn would shift the FCC too far to the left.
In a statement, FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel congratulated Gomez, Starks and Carr. Gomez, she said, “brings with her a wealth of telecommunications experience, a substantial record of public service, and a history of working to ensure the U.S. stays on the cutting edge of keeping us all connected.” She added, “I look forward to working with a full complement of FCC Commissioners to advance our mission to connect everyone, everywhere.”
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