Powell rejects delay of ownership vote

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Federal Communications Commission chairman Michael Powell Thursday denied
Democratic commissioners' request to postpone the June 2 vote on
broadcast-ownership changes by one month.

Although agency chairmen generally grant postponement requests as a courtesy,
Powell cited opposition by the GOP commissioners and demands of some
congressional leaders to keep movement as reasons to stay with the current date.

"There is precedent for granting such a request," he said, "but it is not
customary to do so over the strong objections of a majority of commissioners, or
where Congress has statutorily set the pace of our deliberations, as is the case
here."

Copps wasted no time voicing disappointment.

"We are rushing to passage of new rules without letting the American people know who is going to own and control the public airwaves for years to come," he said in a statement.

"This is no way to do business when critical issues affecting every American are at stake," he added.

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