O'Rielly Fans Push for Second Term

FCC commissioner Michael O'Rielly's nomination by President Trump for a new term has some fans pushing for a swift committee and full-Senate vote. 

The Senate Commerce Committee held a nomination hearing for O'Rielly Tuesday (June 16), with a committee vote next on the agenda. 

O'Rielly's term expired at the end of June 2019, but commissioners can continue to serve until the close of the next Congress. The new term would date from July 1, 2019. 

O'Rielly is a conservative former Hill staffer who generally favors deregulation, including of ISPs and lifting media ownership rules given the rise of competition from cable and broadband and satellite, and was instrumental in loosening KidVid regs on TV stations.  

All that is just fine with the Free State Foundation, a limited government think tank, and competitive carriers. 

“I have watched dozens of FCC commissioners perform their duties over four decades, and many, from both parties, have served with distinction. But I will say, without any hesitation, that Mike O’Rielly is in the very top ranks of the commissioner cohort," said Free State Foundation president Randolph May. "His combination of experience and expertise, commitment to free market-oriented principles, willingness to work with all his colleagues, and roll-up-his-sleeves work-hard mentality, all advance the cause of achieving sound market-oriented communications policy. And he is always on the lookout to reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens whose costs outweigh their benefits and impair consumer welfare. 

I especially applaud the work commissioner O’Rielly has pursued doggedly in the area of FCC institutional reform.... I urge the Senate to speedily confirm commissioner O’Rielly to another term."    

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.