Cornerstone Government Affairs Case Studies

Federal Communications Commission “Stop the Vote” Coalition

Cornerstone represents one of the country’s largest broadband communications providers.  In October 2008, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a draft order, which attempted to redefine and reform the Inter-carrier Compensation (ICC) mechanism and the Universal Service Fund (USF).  The Commission and the Congress, together with industry, had been working on possible proposals for the better part of seven years with no consensus solution in sight.  Amazingly, out of the blue, then-Chairman Kevin Martin released the draft order without consulting with the other members of the Commission or the Congress, and gave the other members of the Commission just over two weeks to review the 160-page document and vote on it at their next meeting, which happened to be November 4th – Election Day. 

Cornerstone led a coalition of more than a dozen telecommunications providers in a sophisticated public affairs campaign, aptly named “Stop the Vote”, to force Chairman Martin to back off of his proposal.  We orchestrated and coordinated grassroots, media, and direct lobbying, getting numerous governors, hundreds of members of Congress and thousands of constituent customers to weigh in against the proposal, which was withdrawn at the 11th hour, and kept the doors open for many of these communications providers.