Less than a day after the key leadership in various telecommunications-related congressional committees and subcommittees was announced, we have learned additional information regarding the composition of these key committees, who will each have oversight over the FCC and the TCPA.
House Communication & Technology Subcommittee Members Announced:
Late Tuesday evening, House Energy and Commerce Democrats finalized their 18-member roster for the powerful Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, which oversees the FCC and telecommunications policy matters, and which frequently summons agency staff for oversight hearings. The Subcommittee will be chaired by Rep. Mike Doyle (Pa.), who was the panel’s ranking member in the last Congress, and other veteran Democrats will remain, including Rep. Anna Eshoo (Calif.), once the Subcommittee’s top Democrat, and Rep. Yvette Clark (N.Y.), who was also elected as Vice Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Other remaining veteran Democrats are Reps. Doris Matsui (Calif.) and Peter Welch (Vt.). Those who have departed the Subcommittee include Reps. Eliot Engel (N.Y.), Raul Ruiz (Calif.), and Bobby Rush (Ill.).
The Subcommittee will also include many new Democratic members, including Reps. Tony Cardenas (Calif.), Ben Ray Lugan (N.M.), Donald McEachin (Va.), Tom O’Halleran (Ariz.), Kurt Schrader (Ore.), Darren Soto (Fla.), and Marc Veasey (Tex.). The other Democratic members include Reps. G.K. Butterfield (N.C.), Diana DeGette (Colo.), Debbie Dingell (Mich.), David Loebsack (Iowa), and Jerry McNerney (Calif.).
Separately, the Republican leadership on the House Communications and Technology Subcommittee became clear, as Energy and Commerce ranking member Greg Walden (R-Ore.) appointed Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) to the top spot. Per Rep. Walden’s press release, the complete Republican Subcommittee roster will come at a later date.
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation Members Also Named:
On the Senate side, the membership of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation has also been updated for the new Congress. While not yet named via a press release, the Committee’s website, along with certain database searches, confirm that new members have been appointed.
For the Republican majority, all but two of the fourteen Senators are returning to the Committee, including Sens. Roy Blunt (Mo.), Ted Cruz (Tex.), Shelley Moore Capito (W. Va.), Deb Fischer (Neb.), Cory Gardner (Colo.), Ron Johnson (Wis.), Mike Lee (Utah), Jerry Moran (Kan.), Dan Sullivan (Alaska), John Thune (S.D.), Roger Wicker (Miss.), and Todd Young (Ind.). New to the Committee will be newly elected Senators Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.) and Rick Scott (Fla.), who will take the place of Sen. Dean Heller, who lost his reelection bid, and Sen. Jim Inhofe (Ok.).
For the Democratic minority, there will also be two new faces serving on the Committee. Newly minted Senators Jacky Rosen (Nev.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.) will fill the seats vacated by Sen. Bill Nelson (Fla.), who lost his reelection bid, and Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (Nev.). Remaining on the Committee will be Sens. Tammy Baldwin (Wisc.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), Maria Cantwell (Wash.), Tammy Duckworth (Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), Ed Markey (Mass.), Gary Peters (Mich.), Brian Schatz (Hi.), Jon Tester (Mont.), and Tom Udall (N.M.).
Yet to be named are those Senators who will serve on the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, which, as we reported, will be led by Senator John Thune of South Dakota, who was elected to serve as the Republican whip. We will report those committee assignments as they become available.
With the membership rosters for the powerful House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation now set, there is a more concrete understanding of who will be the key players in any TCPA-related legislation introduced in this Congress. The addition of several new faces on these key committees and subcommittees provides a great opportunity to educate representatives on the harmful effects the TCPA can have on well-intentioned businesses.