Waxman One Step Closer to Committee Leadership

Activist Congressman Could Pose Trouble for Ad World

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WASHINGTON (AdAge.com) --- U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman has won a preliminary vote over U.S. Rep. John Dingell in their battle to head the House committee that oversees all media, health-care and telecom legislation.
U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman
U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman Credit: Roger L Wollenberg

On the eve of tomorrow's Democratic House vote on who will head the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Mr. Waxman won the support of the Democratic leadership panel that will make a recommendation to party representatives.

Mr. Waxman, a Californian who has headed the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, had announced he was taking on Mr. Dingell, the Michigan representative who is the longest serving member of the House.

Mr. Waxman has been much more of an activist on energy and drug advertising issues than Mr. Dingell. While Mr. Dingell, for instance, urged the Food and Drug Administration to be more proactive in reviewing drug advertising on TV, Mr. Waxman proposed legislation to ban direct-to-consumer drug advertising for the first years of a new drug.

Mr. Waxman has also called for far-reaching bans on advertising for tobacco that ad groups fear could become precedent for attempts to curb alcohol advertising on TV.
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