Revolving Door, White House Ties Will Greatly Ease Comcast Deal
by Karl Bode 11:06AM Tuesday Feb 18 2014 Tipped by newview
The lobbying/regulator revolving door has been spinning so quickly for Comcast that it should greatly help ease approval of their Time Warner Cable acquisition (as an aside, somebody should harness it for renewable energy). You'll recall that former FCC boss Michael Powell now heads the cable industry's top lobbying organization, the NCTA. You'll also recall that former FCC Commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker is also now a Comcast lobbyist
DOJ Antitrust Division director William J. Baer also represented NBCUniversal during Comcast’s acquisition. That's all before you note that top Comcast lobbyist and policy man David "what broadband competition problem?
" Cohen is apparently "close friends
" (whatever that actually means in DC) with President Obama:
Mr. Cohen has close ties to President Obama, perhaps even closer than Comcast’s chief executive, Mr. Roberts, who has golfed with the president on Martha’s Vineyard. A major Democratic fund-raiser, Mr. Cohen and his wife hosted Mr. Obama at their Philadelphia home in 2011, raising $1.2 million at an event where the president called the couple “great friends.” Mr. Cohen also was a guest at the White House on Tuesday for the state dinner in honor of President François Hollande of France.
The X factor in all of this remains new FCC boss Tom Wheeler, who was at one point a former lobbyist for the cable industry. You'll recall that the cable industry really loved the Wheeler pick
, as did some consumer advocacy groups like Public Knowledge, who insisted his lobbyist history was so long ago it wouldn't taint his policy making. We should get insight before too long as to whether that claim holds water.
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Re: Comcast only cable company in the near future?
Kind of difficult to do when them (& others) constantly bribe (sorry, I mean "donate") politicians to prevent that?