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Your Tax Dollars at Play - Broadcasting & Cable

Your Tax Dollars at Play

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The House subcommittees on Communications and Technology and Internet and Commerce and Trade and Consumer Protection suspended their hearing on behavioral advertising for more than five hours and counting Thursday as witnesses cooled their heals–it had still not begun at 5 p.m. after a 10 a.m. start.

Why? There were something like 28 House votes they had to attend to on the floor. Why so many?

Well, I am told it was because they didn’t vote on them Wednesday evening in order to play/attend the annual congressional baseball game.

Democrats won 15 to 10, I am told, with the usually dominant Republicans still smarting from their loss. The real losers, however, were those interested in a prompt hearing featuring important witnesses who gave up their time to inform Congress’s decisionmaking on the issue of online privacy.

If legislators knew there were going to be so many votes stacked up as they took the field, the committees should have rescheduled the hearing later in the day.

I’m told the calendar is full from here to the July 4 break and that Communications Subcommittee Chairman Rick Boucher still plans to finish the hearing. I hope so.

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