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Sen. Sessions Confirmation Hearing Set

The Senate Judiciary Committee has set Jan. 10-11 for the confirmation hearing for Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), President-elect Donald Trump's pick to head the Justice Department as attorney general.

Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) had signaled he planned to hold a hearing before inauguration day on Sessions' nomination.

Sessions is a member of the committee.

Justice could be the only agency officially vetting the proposed $85 billion AT&T-Time Warner deal ($100 billion including debt). Justice reviews mergers for antitrust issues, while the FCC does a deeper dive on public interest impacts.

It is not yet clear whether AT&T and Time Warner will submit the deal to the FCC or find a way to get out from under the transfer of satellite licenses that necessitates that review.

FCC commissioner Ajit Pai, a leading contender for interim FCC chair and perhaps permanent chair, worked with Sessions when Pai was on the Senate Judiciary Committee and has called him "a good man and a superb senator: honorable, thoughtful, devoted to the Constitution, and deeply committed to equal justice and the rule of law."

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.