The Senate Commerce Committee endorsed Jonathan Adelstein to be the fifth
Federal Communications Commission Commissioner Tuesday.
His nomination was forwarded to the full Senate for a final vote after an
hour long confirmation hearing used by several senators less as an opportunity
to grill the would-be regulator than as soapbox for their concerns about the
telecommunications industry, violence on TV, broadband deployment and telephone
Adelstein pledged that one of his priorities will be making sure the FCC
fulfills its duty to provide all Americans, especially in rural areas such as
his home state of South Dakota, access to the full range of communications
Under questioning from Sen. John McCain, the committee's ranking Republican,
Adelstein agreed that the telecommunications industry faces a crisis because of
the WorldCom meltdown and declining values of other infrastructure companies.
Prodded by Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., he called violence on television "an
incredibly important issue" and called on broadcasters to be "vigilant" about
what is aired in hours children are likely to be watching TV.
Adelstein, 39, is a longtime aide to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle,
D-S.D., and is the scion to a large South Dakota construction