XM/Sirius Decision Now in Full FCC’s Hands
Now that FCC Chairman Kevin Martin has declared his support for the XM-Sirius merger’s approval, the deal’s finally remaining hurdle is a vote of the full, five-member FCC.
According to the Wall Street Journal’s Deal Journal blog, two of the commissioners (including Martin) are virtually certain to vote for the merger, one is a near-lock to vote against it, and the two remaining commissioners- one Democrat and one Republican- are swing votes.
Martin and commissioner Robert McDowell are expected to vote yes, while Michael Copps, despite issuing a statement that he will “consider it with an open mind,” is an avowed foe of media consolidation and is expected to vote no. Of the swing votes, Jonathan Adelstein often opposes consolidation but could vote yes based on conditions. Deborah Taylor Tate, meanwhile, who usually votes with Martin, may or may not be swayed by the concessions towards minority programming to which the satellite radio companies already agreed.