Commissioner Abernathy announced that she will be leaving the FCC (PDF) on Dec. 9, 2005. This represents yet another shift in the balance of power and opinion at the commission: earlier this month, the president renominated indecency hound Michael Copps (democrat) for another term, and filled the open republican seat (which was left when Kevin Martin moved up to replace Michael Powell as Chairman) with Deborah Tate, who has yet to demonstrate her positions on key issues.
Commissioners Abernathy and Adelstein (the commission’s other democrat) have been keeping the indecency issue in check, favoring less regulation and fewer fines, while Martin and Copps have both expressed their lust to unleash hell-fire and damnation upon broadcasters who fail to bleep a curse word or cover a cartoon buttocks. Depending on who Bush Jr nominates for Abernathy’s seat, we might see indecency return to the front pages soon.
Copps, a Democrat, is the single scariest member of the commission. I fear a clone.