Technology

Trump pick confirmed to White House telecommunications advisory spot

President Trump’s nominee to head the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), David Redl, was approved by the Senate with a voice vote on Tuesday evening.

{mosads}Redl, who was unanimously approved by a voice vote earlier this month in the Senate Commerce Committee, was nominated by Trump in May. He most recently served as the chief counsel for the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The NTIA, a federal agency within the Department of Commerce, is the White House’s primary adviser on telecom policy, including broadband access and spectrum.

Redl’s confirmation was put on hold in August after Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) noted his objection with Redl’s position on global control of web domains.

Last year, the U.S. ceded its control of ICANN, an organization formerly under contract with the Commerce Department that manages domain names and makes it easier for users to access websites, to an international governing party.

Redl said during a hearing that he was confident that the U.S. would still be able to protect its interests, despite no longer controlling ICANN.

Cruz after those comments that he  had “significant concerns” about Redl taking over the NTIA and that he would like “far more clarity and reassurance on ICANN,” according to Bloomberg.

Telecommunications groups, whose policy goals have benefited from the current Republican majority, praised Redl’s approval.

“His appointment shows that the Administration recognizes the importance of ensuring an open spectrum pipeline that meets growing consumer demand, spurs economic growth and secures U.S. leadership in next-generation 5G wireless,” said Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association, a trade association representing major telecommunications firms like AT&T and Verizon.

— This report was updated at 10:18 a.m.

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