Telecom Lobbyists To Honor Commerce Cmte. Chairman Night Before Telecom Hearing

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Sen. Roger Wicker will preside over a hearing on data privacy the day after he attends a telecom industry fundraiser.

Republican Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi will conduct a hearing next week on data privacy as chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, but the night before he will be the man of the hour at a telecom industry fundraiser, according to The Hill.

Wicker will attend the fundraiser on Tuesday at the Capital Grille restaurant, hosted by political action committees for AT&T and the trade group USTelecom in support of RFW PAC, which is backing Wicker’s re-election campaign.

The very next day, Wicker will preside over his committee’s hearing on data privacy, as Congress works toward crafting legislation on the issue.

While the committee will hear testimony from telecom industry lobbyists, representatives from Silicon Valley and the advertising industry, The Hill said no consumer or privacy advocates are slated to testify.

Jon Leibowitz, who served as a Federal Trade Commission chairman under President Barack Obama, will testify before the committee as the the co-chair of telecom industry lobbying group 21st Century Privacy Coalition.

Congress is looking to fashion a comprehensive data privacy bill in response to a series of data scandals, and though lawmakers from both parties are eager to establish an internet privacy law for the collection and use of private data, the process has been a slow go.

The telecom industry is “among the many interests hoping to craft the legislation in its favor,” The Hill noted.

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