President Joe Biden is busy signing executive orders to undo policies enacted by former President Donald Trump. But his long to-do list also includes nominating heads of two key agencies.
The Federal Communications Commission
The FCC is one of the most powerful U.S. government agencies, as it regulates large corporations. It allows Biden to leapfrog over a gridlocked Congress to enact policy.
Biden’s pick for chair of the FCC will likely be tasked with advancing “net neutrality” rules that make it more difficult for internet service providers such as Verizon
to discriminate against content providers.
The chair of the agency is also expected to advance policies that narrow the “digital divide,” which refers to how rural areas and low-income households lack access to high-speed internet.
Finally, the chair will also be expected to weigh in on Section 230, which prevents social-media sites from being held liable for the content posted by their users.
The Federal Trade Commission
The FTC has played a significant role in advancing or blocking major mergers and acquisitions from occurring. The agency’s primary objective is to enforce antitrust laws that prevent monopolies from arising.
The chair of the FTC could play an important role in the ongoing antitrust investigations of Alphabet Inc.’s Google
The current chairman of the FTC, Joseph Simons, who was appointed by Trump, plans to step down from his role on Jan. 29.