FCC Chairman Stepping Down, Giving GOP the Majority

Posted: Dec 15, 2016 12:00 PM
FCC Chairman Stepping Down, Giving GOP the Majority

As Donald Trump is sworn in as president, Tom Wheeler will be leaving his post as the Federal Communications Commissions Chairman. He served as FCC chairman for three years, a role he calls the "greatest honor" of his professional life.

Wheeler's departure will give the Republicans a 2-1 majority. They will likely be focusing on rolling back regulations like net neutrality rules, which require internet providers to treat all web traffic the same. The GOP argues the rules are too burdensome on businesses. FCC member Ajit Pai said he is confident that under President Trump they can abolish the rules.

"I’m optimistic that last month’s election will prove to be an inflection point—and that during the Trump Administration, we will shift from playing defense at the FCC to going on offense," Pai said in a speech yesterday before the Free State Foundation in Washington, DC, said. The commission "need[s] to remove outdated and unnecessary regulations... We need to fire up the weed whacker and remove those rules that are holding back investment, innovation, and job creation," he also said.