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President Obama Renominates Jessica Rosenworcel for Another Term

Variety logo Variety 1/4/2017 Ted Johnson
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President Barack Obama has renominated Jessica Rosenworcel for a five-year term at the FCC, in an effort to reinstate her to the commission after her tenure lapsed at the end of the last Congress.

On Monday, Rosenworcel even tweeted about cleaning out her office, and the next day she posted an essay on her tenure and the future of communications.

The chances that she will gain Senate approval by the time Obama leaves office are slim. Rosenworcel’s departure and the pending exit of FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler will give Republicans a 2-1 majority on the commission. If she were to rejoin, it would mean a 2-2 split until incoming President Donald Trump gains approval for his nominee to the fifth slot on the commission. That process could take months.

But there is also a possibility for some sort of a deal in which Rosenworcel, a Democrat, is eventually paired in a confirmation vote with Trump’s pick to fill the remaining FCC slot, or with his choice for next FCC chair.

Obama previously renominated Rosenworcel in 2015, but her nomination languished in partisan gridlock. Her renomination cleared the Senate commerce committee, but failed to make it to the Senate floor for a vote by the December recess.

“I applaud President Obama’s reappointment of Jessica Rosenworcel to the FCC, and hope that Congress will act quickly to confirm her nomination,” Wheeler said in a statement.

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