Former House Commerce Committee chairman Billy Tauzin (R-La.) surprised the throng gathered for the National Show opening session by showing up on stage to say hello.
Tauzin was in the area to attend the May 1 wedding of son Billy III and took up NCTA President Robert Sachs' invite to make an appearance at the New Orleans convention.
Tauzin, who says he has lost 32 pounds since the surgery, is "feeling much better" after having a tumor removed from his small intestine last month, says part-time spokesman Ken Johnson, whose main job is now senior adviser to House Homeland Security Chairman Christopher Cox.
Tauzin starts two months of chemotherapy and radiation treatment May 10 at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Tauzin still has his House seat and plans to resume one part of his old Commerce Committee post when he comes back--overseeing the panel's DTV roundtable, a government/industry group aimed finding ways to speed the digital TV transition.
From the NCTA stage Tauzin defended media deregulation.