By: Brooks Boliek
(The Hollywood Reporter) The Senate majority leader tapped one of his own Thursday for the vacant seat on the FCC. Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D., asked President Bush to nominate Jonathan Adelstein for the post vacated by Gloria Tristani. Adelstein is Daschle’s telecommunications aide.
By law, the commission is split politically 3-2, with the majority going to the party that holds the White House. If he is nominated and confirmed, Adelstein will join Michael Copps as the second Democrat on the panel. The GOP members are chairman Michael Powell, Kathleen Abernathy, and Kevin Martin.
Traditionally, the Democratic leader in the Senate gets the opportunity to recommend that party’s members. Unless there is some unforeseen objection, that means nomination.
Daschle cited Adelstein’s understanding of telecommunications issues and his commitment to seeing that all Americans share in the opportunities that the field can open. “Jonathan’s expertise in telecommunications issues and his commitment to seeing rural America share in the telecommunications revolution make him the perfect candidate for this job at this time,” Daschle said.
Adelstein has worked in the Senate for 14 years and served for the last six years as a legislative aide to Daschle, handling issues involving telecommunications, technology, banking, and transportation. Before that, he was a staff member to former Sen. David Pryor, D-Ark., chairman of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, and as an aide to former Sen. Donald Reigle, D-Mich.
Born in Rapid City, S.D., Adelstein earned undergraduate and master’s degrees from Stanford University and studied public policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He also was a teaching fellow in history at Stanford and at Harvard. Adelstein is married to Karen Brenner Adelstein. They have one son, Adam.