FCC's Wheeler: I Felt No Obligation to Follow Obama's Title II Lead

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler says the White House did not give him "secret instructions" to reclassify Internet access under Title II, and that he felt no obligation to follow the President's lead.  

But Wheeler says that, "or course" the President's statement had an impact on the decision — it prompted more public input into the collective record, which Wheeler took into account in the "evolution" of his position. Then, there was the fact that the capital markets did not tank on the President's announcement.    

That is according to his written testimony for a hearing today in the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee's on the commission's relationship with the White House in the run-up to the Feb. 26 vote on Title II. The President last fall came out strongly and publicly for Title II and the chairman appeared to follow that lead.

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John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.