Rockefeller: Very Disappointed By Comcast/NBCU Conditions

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Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) said Tuesday he was "very disappointed" that the Federal Communications Commssion did not impose stronger conditions on the Comcast/NBCU merger.

The deal, which was approved by a 4-1 commission vote Tuesday, with Democrat Michael Copps dissenting, contained many conditions, but Rockefeller said the consumer protections were not strong enough.

He was particularly unhappy that there was not a condition on cable rates "because rates that rise as much as three times the rate of inflation deserve a close look."

Rockefeller said he hoped competition would help put downward pressure on rates, but that the committee would also be keeping an eye on the issue. He also said he would make sure Comcast and NBC fullow through on their public- interest pledges to increase news and public affairs programming and educational programming targeted to kids.

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