Kim Hart Mar 7, 2017
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Trump may renominate Pai for FCC as soon as tomorrow

Susan Walsh / AP

The White House may renominate FCC Chairman Ajit Pai for another term before he goes before the Senate Commerce Committee tomorrow, according to industry sources. Pai met with President Trump yesterday about being renominated for another term, the sources said.

Pai's current five-year term only takes him through the end of the year, so he needs to be renominated to stay on as chairman. There are also two vacancies at the commission waiting to be filled by Trump — one Republican seat and one seat that has to go to a member of another party.

  • Names floated for the Republican seat include Indiana State Senator Brandt Hershman, who has ties to Vice President Mike Pence, and Rosalyn Layton, a free-market scholar who served on the FCC transition team.
  • Democrat Jessica Rosenworcel, who recently wrapped up a previous term at the commission, is in play for the other vacancy. Obama renominated Rosenworcel before leaving office, but her nomination was pulled last week when Trump withdrew a number of regulatory nominations.

An FCC spokesman declined to comment Tuesday. An administration official said, "Like several of his other daily meetings, President Trump met with FCC Commissioner Pai to discuss how to best solve the issues and concerns facing Americans every day."

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D.C.'s March for our Lives: "The voters are coming"

Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives.
Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives. Photo: Axios' Stef Kight.

D.C.'s March for our Lives event is expected to see more than half a million participants.

Why it matters: While D.C. is the primary march, there are hundreds of others around the world and across the country. Led by students, the march is "to demand that a comprehensive and effective bill be immediately brought before Congress to address" gun issues, per the organization's mission statement.

Haley Britzky 4 hours ago
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DOJ eyeing tool to allow access to encrypted data on smartphones

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

The Justice Department is in "a preliminary stage" of discussions about requiring tech companies building "tools into smartphones and other devices" that would allow law enforcement investigators to access encrypted data, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: This has been on the FBI's mind since 2010, and last month the White House "circulated a memo...outlining ways to think about solving the problem," officials told the Times. Both FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, support finding ways for law enforcement to access data without compromising devices security.