Obama to nominate lobbyist Tom Wheeler to head FCC: Report


US President Barack Obama during a meeting in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, DC, on Feb. 15, 2013.


Jewel Samad

The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed sources, said Tuesday that President Barack Obama intends to nominate DC heavyweight Tom Wheeler to run the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). 

Reuters was quick to jump on the report, tweeting: 

This comes as no surprise, according to AdWeek, saying the venture capitalist-turned-communications-lobbyist "has been widely considered to be the top pick for weeks."

The White House is expected to announce the move within days, according to the Los Angeles' Times Joe Flint, who wrote: "Chatter about Wheeler started inside D.C. circles almost immediately after [chairman Julius] Genachowski announced his intention to step down in March."

Wheeler currently works as the managing director for the private equity firm Core Capital Partners, said the LA Times, but AdWeek alleged a "strong political advantage over rivals" given that Wheeler "raised as much as $500,000 for Obama's re-election campaign."

But the presumed candidate also boasts a wealth of experience in the communications industry. He used to head the National Cable Television Association as well as the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Associations, said the LA Times.

"Despite his close ties to industries he will soon regulate, some media watchdogs are willing to give him the benefit of the doubt," according to Flint. That includes the president, apparently. 

No other details were immediately available.