Trump nominates social media hawk as next FCC commissioner

President Donald Trump has nominated longtime telecom lawyer Nathan Simington to be the Federal Communications Commission’s next commissioner, as reported by Law360.

Last week, The Verge first reported that Simington had emerged as a number one candidate to switch present Republican Commissioner Mike O’Rielly. Simington, a senior adviser on the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), performed a major position in drafting a petition required beneath the Trump administration’s social media govt order issued over the summer season. The order instructs the FCC, after receiving NTIA’s petition, to reinterpret Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

The order was issued in May after Twitter fact-checked two of Trump’s tweets that made false statements about mail-in voting. It is unclear when the FCC intends to roll out a proper discover of proposed rulemaking and vote on the measure.

Simington’s nomination marks a major break within the Trump administration’s former FCC nominations. Previously, the administration has nominated Republican commissioners in favor of light-touch telecommunications and expertise coverage. O’Rielly was beforehand nominated for a third-term by Trump, however his nomination was abruptly withdrawn after he made a speech expressing considerations over the administration’s social media order that might empower the FCC to take a novel position in regulating content material moderation on social media platforms.

“As a conservative, I’m troubled voices are stifled by liberal tech leaders,” O’Rielly tweeted in May. “At same time, I’m extremely dedicated to First Amendment which governs much here.”

If Simington’s nomination is accepted within the Senate, the FCC would have two Republican commissioners possible in favor of voting to approve the administration’s social media order. Republican Commissioner Brendan Carr penned an op-ed in Newsweek final month arguing that the FCC ought to require social media platforms to submit transparency stories just like what web service suppliers already do.

In response to the nomination, O’Rielly sent Simington best wishes on Twitter. “I extend my sincere congrats to Mr. Simington for selection to join [the FCC],” O’Rielly wrote, “and offer best wishes for a smooth confirmation process and successful term at the Commission.”

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