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Manchin to Vote No on Gigi Sohn for FCC Commissioner | U.S. Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia

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March 07, 2023

Washington,
DC – Today, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) released the following statement on
his decision to vote against Gigi Sohn for Democratic Commissioner on the
Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Ms. Sohn has faced unprecedented,
bipartisan opposition to her nomination as a result of her years of partisan
activism, inflammatory statements online, and work with far-left
groups. She has also spent many years as a public interest advocate, using
similarly inflammatory language on social media.

 

“For
nearly 100 years, the FCC has been an independent, nonpartisan regulator of all
forms of communication in American life, from radio to television to satellite.
Unfortunately, over the last several years, it has become increasingly
politicized. The FCC must focus on issues of critical importance to West
Virginian and Americans, such as updating broadband coverage maps, addressing
compromised Chinese equipment and products that threaten the security of our
communications infrastructure, and ensuring every American has access to
affordable Internet services. Especially now, the FCC must remain above the toxic
partisanship that Americans are sick and tired of, and Ms. Sohn has clearly
shown she is not the person to do that. For those reasons, I cannot support her
nomination to the FCC, and I urge the Biden Administration to put forth a
nominee who can bring us together, not drive us apart.”

Ms.
Sohn has been re-nominated this Congress to be the third Democratic
Commissioner on the FCC, and she has now had three controversial Senate
Commerce Committee hearings. Last Congress, she was
reported out of Committee on a 14-14 party-line split – the first time an FCC
nominee has not been reported favorably by the
Committee. Given ethical concerns raised during
her confirmation process, Ms. Sohn has agreed to recuse herself from regulating certain
broadcast issues if confirmed, leading to additional questions
about whether she can adequately serve as FCC Commissioner if she cannot weigh in on some of the key matters before the
Commission. 



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