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Shakeup at FCC: Chairman Genachowski to step down

Julius Genachowski reported to be planning an announcement tomorrow revealing plans to leave his post.

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski CNET/Marguerite Reardon

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski will announce his intention to step down tomorrow, according to The Wall Street Journal which cited an "FCC official."

Earlier this week, the announcement that Republican FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell was leaving gave Genachowski, a Democrat, more political leeway to leave his post. As The Washington Post noted, even with Genachowski gone the Democrats would retain a 2-1 voting advantage. If he had left before McDowell, the votes at the FCC would be 2-2.

In recent weeks, rumors have circulated regarding Genachowski's plans, with the White House interviewing several candidates. The list reportedly includes venture capitalist Tom Wheeler; assistant Commerce Secretary Larry Strickling; and Karen Kornbluh, the ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

During his tenure, Genachowski, who was appointed by President Barack Obama to the commission in 2009, was especially active on the wireless spectrum front, pushing for gigabit speed broadband services in all 50 states by 2015. And in the National Broadband Plan, presented in 2010, Genachowski set a goal of getting 100Mbps broadband to 100 million households by 2020.