Trump Expected to Name FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai as Chairman

USA presidentelect Donald Trump met Indian-American Ajit Pai, commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission, fueling speculation about his role in the incoming administration. However, choosing Pai to be Chairman of the FCC would not be without controversy, as he is a well known opponent of the net neutrality rules that were put in place under the Obama administration.

Pai was nominated to the FCC three years ago by former United States president Barack Obama. It is also worth pointing out that Pai served as Attorney General Counsel for Verizon from 2001-2003 and spent another year representing telecom clients at Jenner & Block (2011-2012).

Pai's tenure at the commission is set to expire this year, so he'll need to be reconfirmed by the Senate if Republicans want him to stick around past 2017.

Now that Wheeler has left the FCC, the agency's political structure will shift to a 3-2 Republican majority after a replacement for Wheeler and Jessica Rosenworcel are made.

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Pai is the senior Republican on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

The public was also firmly behind net neutrality during the debate over the policy, with an online discussion forum from the FCC receiving 4 million comments in favor of the rules, a number the FCC said was the highest level of public participation in its history. He adds: "The federal government must make it easier to for broadband providers to retire increasingly obsolete copper lines in favour of next-generation technologies like fibre". Pai is one of the two Republicans on the five-member panel that now has three members after two Democrats departed during the change of presidential administrations.

Internet Association President and CEO Michael Beckerman congratulated Pai and said he looked forward to a productive working relationship with Chairman Pai.

When Pai does take over the leadership role of the FCC, his first order of business will be to join O'Rielly in finding a way to realign or overturn the net neutrality rules.

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Pai, who is 44, met Trump earlier this week, though Trump's transition team has given no details of the conversation.

"[We] need to remove outdated and unnecessary regulations", he said.

While we would be more than happy to say that these are just speculations regarding what he would do once he is head of the FCC, things are not just speculations.

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