To assure the Republicans have two seats, like the Democrats, on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) when Biden takes office, the Senate confirmed Nathan Simington, according to The Hill on Dec. 9, 2020.
The Senate voted him in potentially crippling the Biden administration before they take office. Simington is a senior adviser at the National Telecommunication and Information Administration and won the vote 49-46.
In January 2021 the FCC chairman Ajit Pai will step down, leaving the agency Democrats and Republicans split two to two.
Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), during a virtual event with a civil rights group, said that Simington is a dangerous nominee to the organization. Blumenthal stated:
He is conflicted, dangerous, unqualified, and unprepared.
Simington helped with crafting the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) petition.
After Michael O’Rielly disagreed with President Donald Trump’s executive order that targeted Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives online platforms liability protection for content posted by third parties and allows them to do good faith content moderation, O’Rielly was not renominated, Trump nominated Simington after.
Senator Ron Wyden(D-Ore.), one of the original authors of Section 230, stated:
Simington’s only qualification for this job is following Trump’s orders to turn the FCC into government speech police.
Brendan Carr the fellow Republican commissioner is a supporter of reinterpreting Section 230 to make internet platforms liable for the content they share. Pai can force the issue about Section 230 before he steps down in January. 20.
The Senate voted Tuesday and confirmed Republican Simington to the FCC. Roger Wicker the Senate Commerce Committee Chairman praised Simington after the vote. The Senate voting Simington into the FCC will put pressure on the Democratic party.
Written by Jessica Letcher
The Hill: Senate confirms Trump FCC nominee amid Democratic pushback; by Chris Mills Rodrigo
Deadline: Senate Confirms Nathan Simington To FCC; Agency Faces Deadlock At Outset Of Joe Biden’s Term; by Ted Johnson
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