Overnight Tech: Trump nominates Dem to FCC | Facebook pulls suspected baseball gunman's pages | Uber board member resigns after sexist comment

Overnight Tech: Trump nominates Dem to FCC | Facebook pulls suspected baseball gunman's pages | Uber board member resigns after sexist comment
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TRUMP NOMINATES ROSENWORCEL: President TrumpDonald John TrumpThorny part of obstruction of justice is proving intent, that's a job for Congress Obama condemns attacks in Sri Lanka as 'an attack on humanity' Schiff rips Conway's 'display of alternative facts' on Russian election interference MORE on Tuesday nominated Jessica Rosenworcel to return to the Federal Communications Commission to fill an open seat for a Democrat.

A former commissioner, Rosenworcel served from 2012 to January 2017, when her term expired.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerHillicon Valley: House Dems subpoena full Mueller report | DOJ pushes back at 'premature' subpoena | Dems reject offer to view report with fewer redactions | Trump camp runs Facebook ads about Mueller report | Uber gets B for self-driving cars Dem legal analyst says media 'overplayed' hand in Mueller coverage Former FBI official praises Barr for 'professional' press conference MORE (D-N.Y.) had pushed for her to serve another term, and former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaObama condemns attacks in Sri Lanka as 'an attack on humanity' Trump hits Romney for Mueller criticism Former Bush assistant: Mueller report makes Obama look 'just plain bad' MORE renominated her in the days before he left office. But President Trump withdrew her nomination in February.

Rosenworcel has been a strong supporter of the FCC's Obama-era net neutrality rules, which new Republican Chairman Ajit Pai is moving to roll back.


Trump's decision to tap Rosenworcel to serve another term was roundly praised by both Democrats and Republicans at the FCC, cable industry advocates and net neutrality supporters alike.

"Ms. Rosenworcel is a great pick for the FCC and I'm happy the Administration accepted our recommendation," Schumer said in a statement. "Once she is confirmed by the Senate, I look forward to working with her to prioritize consumer protections – including preserving net neutrality, expanding rural broadband and more."

The FCC currently has two GOP commissioners and one Democrat. Trump still needs to nominate another Republican.

His latest move may signal that the president intends to put forth a Republican name soon in order to avoid throwing the FCC into a 2-2 partisan deadlock in the midst of its proceedings to undo net neutrality.

Administrations often put forth Republican and Democratic nominations in tandem to ease the confirmation process.

Rosenworcel and Pai were unanimously confirmed together by the Senate in 2012.

Prior to joining the commission, Rosenworcel was a veteran Democratic aide at the commission and in Congress. She worked on the staffs of former Sens. Jay RockefellerJohn (Jay) Davison RockefellerWorld Health Day: It's time to fight preventable disease Lobbying World Senate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation MORE (D-W.Va.) and Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), and former FCC Commissioner Michael Copps, whom she succeeded.

Read more here.


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FACEBOOK PULLS SUSPECTED BASEBALL GUNMAN'S PAGE: Facebook has removed pages associated with James T. Hodgkinson, the suspected gunman who opened fire at a congressional baseball practice early Wednesday morning.

The company said that it removed Hodkinson’s pages for violating its community standards.

“We are shocked and saddened by the incident that took place this morning,” Facebook said in an emailed statement first reported by Politico. “We have identified and removed the suspect’s profiles for violating our community standards.”

Hodgkinson, 66, opened fire early Wednesday during a GOP baseball practice in Alexandria, Va., injuring five people including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), according to the FBI, which said it was investigating his social media posts.

Read more here.


DEMS PUSH FCC TO BLOCK STRAIGHT-TO-VOICEMAIL MARKETING: Democratic senators are calling on Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai not to allow telemarketers to leave "ringless voicemails" on potential customers' phones.

Sens. Ed MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyTlaib rallies in support of Green New Deal at Detroit town hall Ben & Jerry's backs Green New Deal: 'We have to act now' Warren praises Ocasio-Cortez in Time 100 MORE (Mass.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.), Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyDurbin calls Mueller report findings on Trump team 'troubling' 20 Dems demand no more money for ICE agents, Trump wall The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump, Dems prep for Mueller report's release MORE (Vt.), and other Democrats penned a letter to Pai, asking that he not allow companies to leave messages on consumer's phones that go straight to their voicemail.

The FCC is currently considering a petition from firms that want the commission to revise its position on such calls, which are currently barred under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991.

Read more here.


UBER BOARD MEMBER STEPS DOWN AFTER SEXIST COMMENT: David Bonderman has resigned from the board of Uber after making derogatory remarks about women during a meeting.

"I want to apologize to my fellow board member for a disrespectful comment that was directed at her during today's discussion," Bonderman, who is a partner at private equity firm TPG, said in a statement Tuesday night, according to The New York Times's Mike Isaac. "It was inappropriate. I also want to apologize to all the Uber employees who were offended by the remark. I deeply regret it."

He said he did not want his comments to create distraction "as Uber works to build a culture of which we can be proud," Bonderman added.

Bonderman had joked that women talk too much during a meeting about sexism at Uber.

Read more here.


UBER FACES FTC PROBE: Uber is reportedly facing a new probe from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over its privacy practices.

The agency has launched an inquiry into Uber, sources tell Recode, focused on the company's handling of customer data.

The company has faced a number of questions and controversies about its use of customer data, including "God view," a tool that allowed Uber to reveal the locations of prominent users such as politicians and celebrities.

Some sources cautioned that the probe might not lead to further action. They said the FTC regularly questions companies over user privacy practices and in many cases closes the investigations without imposing fines or other penalties.

But a new federal probe would add to Uber's problems during a difficult stretch.

Read more here.


SENATE EYES LIFTING DRIVERLESS CAR RESTRICTIONS: A Senate panel is eyeing legislative steps to make it easier for driverless cars to be exempt from brake and pedal requirements.

During a hearing on Wednesday, stakeholders pleaded with lawmakers to ease current industry safety regulations that are meant for traditional automobiles, which they say may hinder the testing, innovation and deployment of self-driving cars.

Under current standards, all cars are required to have a steering wheel and floor pedals. Autonomous vehicle makers thus need to apply for an exemption if they wish to design and test cars without those features, but federal officials can only grant 2,500 per year, which could eventually become a problem as more companies seek to develop the technology.

"It's vitally important. You have to have uniformity, but you also need exemptions, and a substantial number, to generate the test data," said Mitch Bainwol, president and CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "And secondly, there's a massive economic commitment here, and in order to make it economically attractive and make the math work, you've got to be able to deploy."

Read more here.



The House Science, Space and Technology committee will hold an oversight hearing on the WannaCry cyber attacks at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday 

The House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on lawful access to data stored abroad at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday.



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