- The new head of the FCC is an internet expert who is a strong advocate for net neutrality and cheaper broadband access.
As anticipated, Julius Genachowski has been tapped by President Barack Obama to head the Federal Communications Commission.
The move is another indication that incoming leadership in Washington will move decisively to protect the free flowing Internet from those seeking to become gatekeepers to new media.
It also fulfills Obama’s promise made on the campaign trail to appoint an FCC chair who shares his support for Net Neutrality.
- Obama’s secret letter to Russia purportedly said if Russia helps with Iran, the European missile defense system will no longer be needed.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama said on Tuesday he wanted to work with Russia to resolve a nuclear stand-off with Iran but denied reports he had offered to slow deployment of a missile defense shield in exchange for Moscow’s help.
The New York Times reported that Obama had sent a letter to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev suggesting he would back off deploying a system in eastern Europe to intercept and destroy missiles, a move Russia sees as a military threat, if Moscow helped stop Iran from developing long-range weapons.
- Department of Justice halts a death penalty case.
SAN FRANCISCO — President Obama’s Justice Department halted the death penalty trial of an alleged San Francisco gang leader Monday by accepting a 40-year prison sentence that the Bush administration had vetoed.
The plea agreement for Emile Fort remained on hold after a federal judge heard a tearful plea from a murder victim’s mother for a life sentence and summoned prosecutors to a closed-door session to describe their case against Fort.
- The days of no bid government contracts are now over.
WASHINGTON “" President Barack Obama on Wednesday ordered an overhaul of the way the U.S. government awards contracts for private sector work, reversing a Bush administration policy that in some cases led to federal investigations of procurement practices and no-bid contracts.
Obama joined Republican Sen. John McCain, his presidential campaign rival, and other congressional figures to announce an executive memorandum that commits his administration to a new set of marching orders for awarding contracts. Obama said “the days of giving government contractors a blank check are over” and said changes could save up to $40 billion a year.