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Rep. Walden Calls Out Pai Attackers

Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), chair of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, used an FCC oversight hearing Wednesday (July 25) to call out those who have attacked FCC chair Ajit Pai personally over his stand on net neutrality.

Related: Pai, Others Call Out Protesters at His Home

Pai and his family have been threatened and harassed over his support of rolling back regulations against blocking, throttling and paid prioritization.

Walden said in his opening statement, and more extensively in his prepared statement, talked about "corrosive voices" trying to destroy daily discourse.

He said that Pai knew well that conservatives have to be careful to let their views be known.

"[Chairman] Pai has not only had his positions criticized-which is fair for all of us –however, what is appalling is the way his personal life has been destroyed. He can’t go to dinner the way you and I take for granted, nor does he have the ability to enjoy the peace of his own home–these everyday experiences should be sacred for any man or woman with young children."

He added a tacit criticism of colleagues on the other side of the aisle, talking about "too much silence from certain quarters," adding: "I sincerely hope that the tone for our modern public square will change for the better."

Pai conceded he had some difficult days. He said that the decisions he has made are not always easy, "as long as I am at this agency I am going to find the facts, follow the law, and call them like I see them. "

John Eggerton
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.