White House Nominates Gary Locke for Secretary of Commerce

The White House has nominated former Washington State Governor Gary Locke to be Secretary of Commerce.

It will be the third attempt to fill that post. The White House first chose former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson who withdrew his name due to an investigation of a private company's dealings with the state government, specifically how political donors won a state contract.

Then the President reached across the aisle to Republican Senator Judd Greg, but he withdrew over disagreements with the president's economic stimulus package which was almost universally opposed by Republicans. This time, the President made a point of saying that Locke, a Democrat, shared his vision for the country's economic future.

"Now, I'm sure it's not lost on anyone that we've tried this a couple of times," said the President Wednesday, "but I'm a big believer in keeping at something until you get it right. And Gary is the right man for this job.

The Secretary of Commerce is in charge of the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, the White House's chief telecom policy adviser. NTIA is currently overseeing the DTV-to-analog converter box coupon program, whose waiting list for those coupons helped prompt the Obama administration to call for moving the DTV transition date.

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.