Senate approves FCC trio

Abernathy, Martin join Powell under GOP control

WASHINGTON — The Federal Communications Commission will soon be under Republican control, with the U.S. Senate approving President Bush’s three new commissioners and agency topper Michael Powell.

Republicans Kathleen Abernathy and Kevin Martin join Powell to achieve a 3-2 split on the commish for the first time since the GOP took the White House in January.

At the same time, Democrat Michael Copps was confirmed by the Senate to fill one of two Democratic seats at the FCC.

Bush must sign off on the Senate’s confirmation before the new commissioners can take their seats.

Current FCC commissioner Harold Furchtgott-Roth, a Republican, and Susan Ness, a Democrat, are stepping down.

FCC commish Gloria Tristani will remain the other Democratic commissioner, although she has already announced she will step down at the end of the year.

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