So she's married to the son of the man known as the Carlyle Group's ultimate fixer, James A. Baker 3d. Well, that makes it all perfectly clear!
The new senior vice president of government affairs for Comcast Corp. in Washington, Meredith Attwell Baker, faces a host of lobbying limits because of her position on the Federal Communications Commission when the agency approved the cable company's $30 billion merger with NBC Universal Inc. in January.
She cannot lobby the FCC or any executive agency until the end of the Obama administration - which, if President Obama wins a second term, will be six years - and she is permanently barred from lobbying the FCC on issues related to the NBCUniversal transaction, which she voted to approve in the 4-1 vote.
Baker said Friday that she was surprised that Comcast still wanted to hire her after learning of these restrictions because she would be "completely useless" dealing with the FCC.
"I want people to understand that I haven't done anything wrong," Baker said. "I have done everything to comply with the rules."
[...] A lawyer with deep Republican ties in Texas and Washington, the 42-year-old Baker is the daughter-in-law of James A. Baker 3d, a former chief of staff for both President Reagan and President George H.W. Bush. She joined the regulatory agency after former FCC Chairman Kevin Martin resigned when Obama took office in 2009.
[...] U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, a California Democrat and Comcast critic, said she had concerns about Baker's departure coming only months after the NBCU vote.
"I feel strongly that the process was compromised," Waters said of the agency's review of the Comcast/NBCU deal. "I do not believe that there were no discussions of her going to work for Comcast before the deal was approved. I think she knew when she took that vote that she would be going to work for Comcast."
Added Waters, "She may deny there were discussions, but I don't believe her."
Baker said there were "absolutely no conversations."
Baker is quite possibly telling the truth. After all, some things are just understood.