FCC Chair Kevin Martin Calls It Quits

Jan 15, 2009  •  Post A Comment

Federal Communication Commission Chairman Kevin J. Martin used his last agency meeting as chairman to announce he will leave the commission, rather than staying on in the Obama administration.
Mr. Martin’s departure was expected, but he had previously declined to disclose his plans.
In a statement after announcing his departure at the FCC meeting, Mr. Martin said he would depart Jan. 20 to become a Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C.
President-elect Barack Obama is expected to designate either Democrat Michael Copps or Jonathan Adelstein as temporary FCC chairman next week, pending the confirmation of Julius Genachowski as the new FCC chairman.
Mr. Martin became a commissioner of the FCC in July 2001 and took the chairmanship in March 2005. Mr. Martin’s term at the FCC isn’t over, but it was expected he would quit after Democrats take over next week.
“It’s been a particularly important time, a time of tremendous change,” Mr. Martin said at the meeting. “There is a lot to be proud of.”
He pointed to increases in broadband availability in the U.S. and efforts to move forward the digital TV transition.
In Mr. Martin’s letter of resignation to President Bush, he said his philosophy at the FCC “has been to pursue deregulation while paying close attention to its impact on consumers and the particulars of a given market, to balance deregulation with consumer protection.”
He said he “approached his decisions with a fundamental belief that a robust, competitive marketplace, not regulation, is ultimately the best protector of the public interest and the best method of delivering the benefits of choice, innovation and affordability to American consumers.”
Mr. Martin’s letter to President Bush cited the advances during his term. “During this period, we have seen a telecommunications industry undergoing rapid and unprecedented change. As a result of the market-oriented and consumer-focused policies we have pursued the American people are now reaping the rewards of convergence and the broadband revolution including new and more innovative technologies and services at ever-declining prices.”
(Editor: Baumann)
(11:45 a.m.: Updated throughout)


  1. Another Bush “bobo” leaving—like rats off of a sinking ship. Another deregulation fanatic leaving in the wake that damage that his decisions contributed to.

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