The surprise group of conservatives who support President Biden’s FCC nominee Gigi Sohn

Coverage Type: 

President Joe Biden's nominee for Federal Communications Commissioner, Gigi Sohn [Senior Fellow and Public Advocate at the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society], is a prominent liberal activist and a former Democratic staffer at the FCC who favors net neutrality, stronger government regulation of the broadband industry, and the breakup of Big Tech companies. Senate Republicans strongly oppose her confirmation, criticizing her not only as a left-wing ideologue who would favor heavy-handed regulation but also, unusually, as a threat to censor or block conservative speech. Nevertheless, some prominent conservative media owners and commentators who have benefited from her advocacy, as well as certain state Republican representatives, are in support of her nomination. They say their support is based on personal experience working with her and that they are confident she is a free speech advocate. Furthermore, they say she has the right credentials to help push for productive broadband and telecommunications policies that will encourage competition within those industries, bring more diverse voices into the media landscape, and expand internet access in rural areas. “All the conservative censorship concerns with her are caught up in the politics of the moment and fears with Big Tech — it’s not based in any reality of who Gigi is,” said former Mississippi Republican Rep Chip Pickering, now CEO at INCOMPAS. “Anyone who knows her knows her firm commitment to the First Amendment and free speech.”

The surprise group of conservatives who support Biden’s left-wing FCC nominee