A Republican-heavy but nonetheless bipartisan group of 97 members of Congress, including the chairs of the House Energy & Commerce Committee and Communications Subcommittee, has written the FCC asking it to approve the Comcast/NBCU deal. with haste and by a bipartisan vote, suggesting that "further delay...could undermine much-needed jobs and investment."
That is according to a copy of the letter posted on the FCC's Web site Monday.
In the letter, they said that they were pleased the chairman had circulated a draft approval of the deal, but pointed out that it had been more than a year since it was announced (Dec. 3, 2009), and 11 months since the FCC began its "detailed review."
They pointed out that the transaction had the longest-ever formal pleading cycle and that, "every stakeholder has had every opportunity to be heard."
"[W]e encourage you and your fellow commissioners to complete your agency's review without further delay, and we hope this review would result in a bipartisan outcome," they said.
The lead signatures on the letter were House members Charles Dent (Republican) and Mike Doyle (Democrat) of Comcast's home state of Pennsylvania. In addition to Republicans Fred Upton of Michigan and Greg Walden of Oregon, chairs of the Energy & Commerce Committee and Communications Subcommittee, respectively, Democrats on the letter included Virginia Rep. Gerry Connolly, Edolphus Townes of New York, and Jim Costa of California.
In a separate letter, Pennsylvania's bipartisan Senatorial contingent of Robert Casey, Democrat, and Patrick Toomey, Republican, also called for swift approval, warning that "further delay" would be "harmful and unnecessary."
The FCC's informal 180-day shot clock hit 180 days in November and at press time was on day 226.
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