The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee last week approved the nomination of Robert McDowell for a seat on the FCC.
McDowell, a telecommunications lawyer, now must be approved by the full Senate in order to join the commission. His confirmation would return the FCC to a full working 3-2 Republican majority, the first time that has happened in about a year.
McDowell, 42, is formally a lawyer for Comptel, a trade association that represents telephone and Internet companies that compete against large carriers such as AT&T and Verizon Communications.
If approved, McDowell would fill a seat that expires June 30, 2009.