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Industry Reacts to Pai Reconfirmation

Colleagues from around the broadcast and telecom industry congratulate him

After the U.S. Senate voted Monday to confirm FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to a new term at the helm of the Federal Communications Commission, responses have poured in.

The chairman himself said, “I am deeply grateful to the U.S. Senate for confirming my nomination to serve a second term at the FCC and to President Trump for submitting that nomination to the Senate. Since January, the commission has focused on bridging the digital divide, promoting innovation, protecting consumers and public safety, and making the FCC more open and transparent. With today’s vote, I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues to advance these critical priorities in the time to come.”

Fellow Republican and Obama nominee Commissioner Michael O’Rielly released a statement saying, “I am exceptionally pleased that Chairman Pai has been approved for a new commission term by the U.S. Senate. To date, his leadership as chairman has brought greater openness and thoughtfulness to our proceedings. In the months and years ahead, I look forward to continuing our work to advance a pro growth, less regulatory communications environment that best serves the consumer.”

“NAB congratulates FCC Chairman Pai on being confirmed to another five-year term at the commission. Chairman Pai understands broadcasting’s unique role as an indispensable communications medium, and we appreciate his effort to ease outdated regulatory burdens on local radio and TV. We share his vision for a vibrant communications future that allows local broadcast innovation and robust competition to largely unregulated broadband and pay programming providers,” said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith.

Society of Broadcast Engineers Pres. Jerry Massey said, “The SBE looks forward to continue working with the FCC and Chairman Pai as a technical resource on regulatory issues, including AM improvement and ambient RF noise reduction in the broadcast bands.”

America’s Public Television Stations President/CEO Patrick Butler said, “We look forward to working with the chairman to ensure a smooth post-auction channel repacking process, expeditiously approve the Next Generation broadcast standard, and reform the broadcast regulatory structure to reflect the realities of the 21st century.”

“It was encouraging to see even some Democrats vote for a free and open internet and the rollback of the Obama-era heavy-handed regulations that turned control of the Internet from the police at the Federal Trade Commission to the central planners at the Federal Communications Commissions,” said FreedomWorks President Adam Brandon. He added, “We look forward to supporting Chairman Pai’s continued efforts to ensure outdated regulations don’t stand in the way of economic growth in the technology and communications sector.”

John Lyons, president of the Association of Federal Communications Consulting Engineers, added: “AFCCE congratulates FCC Chairman Pai on being confirmed to another five-year term at the FCC. Chairman Pai has met with AFCCE on various technical matters including the RF noise problem and rule enforcement, and we look forward to continuing to provide independent technical consultation and analysis to aid and promote the proper federal administration and regulation of communications.”

Additional reactions can be found at our sister publication Broadcasting & Cable’s “FCC’s Pai Gets Industry Welcome for Return Engagement.”