Grassley Vows to Block FCC Nominees Over Requested LightSquared Info
November 10 2011 – Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) says he will block the pending nominations of two FCC commissioners when they reach the Senate floor unless he receives information from the agency on its dealings with LightSquared - a company that plans to build hundreds of broadcast stations to cover the U.S. with 4G broadband service. Grassley stated in a news release last week that the sought-after information would shed light into the process of the agency’s fast-tracking of the LightSquared broadband project, which critics claim could interfere with current GPS technology and impact millions of small businesses, including aviation-based operations.
“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 27, 2011, regarding their actions related to LightSquared and Harbinger Capital,” Grassley stated in a news release. “Since then, I have repeated my request to the FCC through letters I sent on July 5th and September 8th and the FCC continues to deny my request for documents.”
The two nominees, Jessica Rosenworcel and Ajit Pai, must be confirmed by the Senate Commerce Committee, which could happen within the next several weeks. Grassley has put a statement in the Senate record that he will hold up the two pending nominees for commissioner positions when the nominations reach the Senate floor unless the agency begins to offer more information that will provide transparency into the public business it conducts.