Public Interest Groups Push for Gigi Sohn FCC Confirmation

Today marks a full year since Gigi Sohn was nominated to fill the fifth and final seat on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Since her nomination, Sohn has gone through two confirmation hearings and a constant barrage of right-wing attacks pushed by the big cable and telecom monopolies. 

With the lame duck session of Congress just weeks away, an array of public interest groups are ramping up a campaign to push Sen. Chuck Schumer and the White House to schedule a vote to confirm her nomination before the end of the year.

Time is Running Out

Dozens of press releases are being issued today to bring attention to the apparent foot-dragging of the U.S. Senate and White House that has left the FCC in a 2-2 deadlock for nearly two years.

Public Knowledge issued a statement today calling on Senate leaders to confirm President Biden’s nominee:

The agency has not had a full five-member commission for the entire Biden administration, which has effectively stalled key consumer protection priorities as well as our nation’s work to provide high-speed broadband to those on the wrong side of the digital divide. Public Knowledge urges Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to call the vote confirming Gigi Sohn to the FCC to get the nation’s broadband agenda back on track.

Free Press issued “an 'F' in FCC for failing to confirm” such a well-regarded public-interest advocate. In a statement released today, Free Press Action Internet Campaign Director Heather Franklin said:

Gigi Sohn has been in limbo for a year now, preventing a deadlocked agency from passing crucial policies that would help people in the United States connect and communicate. This senseless delay is harming millions of people, especially working families trying to pay their rising monthly bills and those in Black, Indigenous, Latinx and rural communities that the biggest phone and cable companies have long exploited and neglected.

Last week, the Washington Post published a story about a letter of support signed by 250 industry and public interest groups. The letter was sent to Senate leaders calling for a vote on Sohn’s nomination before Congress adjourns.

‘The FCC needs a full commission as it begins to deliberate on upcoming critical decisions that will have profound impacts on the economy and the American people,’ leaders from groups including the Consumer Technology Association, Rural Wireless Association and Color Of Change wrote.

ILSR was a signatory to that letter as we have advocated for Sohn to be confirmed numerous times over the past year.

Below, watch a More Perfect Union video (below) that asks and answers: "Why Are Verizon & Comcast Terrified Of FCC Nominee Gigi Sohn?"

Inline image of Gigi Sohn courtesy of Flickr user Joel Sage, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)