As Obama Bundler, Wheeler Follows in Genachowski’s Footsteps

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Thomas “Tom” Wheeler, managing director of Core Capital Partners LP and President Barack Obama’s nominee as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), right, laughs as Obama makes the announcement in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., on May 1, 2013.

In President Barack Obama’s administration, being a prolific fundraiser seems to be among the critieria to chair the Federal Communications Commission.

For the second time, Obama reached into his list of campaign bundlers and chose one of the most prolific, Tom Wheeler, who brought in more than $500,000 for the president’s re-election campaign. Wheeler succeeds Julius Genachowski, who raised more than $500,000 for Obama the first time he ran for the White House.

“That is the classic tool for getting appointed,” said Craig Holman, who lobbies on campaign finance issues for the advocacy group Public Citizen. “Most of the bundlers really get appointed to more ceremonial jobs, like ambassadorships. Tom Wheeler is moving into a very important position. Let’s hope that it isn’t just his bundling and fundraising that got him that appointment.”

 

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