FCC Commissioner Abernathy to Depart Dec. 9

Nov 17, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Republican FCC Commissioner Kathleen Abernathy announced Thursday that she plans to leave the agency Dec. 9, a move that could cede majority control to the Federal Communications Commission’s two Democrats.

Ms. Abernathy’s departure threatens to upset the agency’s political balance, because the FCC is deadlocked politically with two Republican and two Democratic commissioners. President Bush recently announced his intention to nominate Deborah Taylor Tate, a director of the Tennessee Regulatory Authority, to a Republican seat at the agency and renominated Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps to a new term. But it’s unclear whether the Senate will confirm Ms. Tate in time to preclude the agency’s two Democrats from obtaining their voting majority.