Sen Cantwell talks timeline of Senate confirmation hearings for Gigi Sohn and Alan Davidson

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Not included in the November 17 Senate confirmation hearing were Gigi Sohn [Senior Fellow and Public Advocate at the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society], President Biden’s pick for the open Federal Communications Commission seat, and Alan Davidson, the nominee to helm the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Sen Maria Cantwell (D-WA) has stated their confirmation hearing will likely take place the week the Senate returns from its Thanksgiving break, with December 1 a prime contender. The committee will likely vote on Rosenworcel and Bedoya’s nominations during the same session, Cantwell added. Although the senator originally considered bundling Biden’s picks, she said that offices had just gotten the nominees’ paperwork and “had questions, so we gave them a little extra time to get through that.” Republicans have begun attacking Sohn for what they consider a burdensome regulatory approach as well as her past critiques of right-leaning media outlets. Sen Dan Sullivan (R-AK) said he was glad Cantwell split the consideration of the FCC picks. “That was important for a number of us,” Sullivan said, calling Sohn “controversial” and saying he plans to meet with her, too. “When it’s a target-rich environment at a hearing, it’s harder to drill down,” he added. “And I think we’re going to need to drill down with her.” Cantwell said she hasn’t heard any Democratic pushback so far regarding Sohn and plans to meet with her soon.

Nominations and markups and hearings, oh my!