Journalist Wendy Lee of local public radio station KPCC reported Monday that Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), who represents Hollywood and much of west Los Angeles, has written to the Tribune Company, demanding that it provide him with documents about the future of the L.A. Times. Waxman was already scheduled to meet with the company “to discuss his concerns about the company’s plan to spin-off its daily newspapers,” Lee wrote.
The local left, including the Hollywood elite, has been particularly concerned about the fate of the liberal L.A. Times since last year, when Koch Industries showed interest in acquiring the newspaper, which had just been through bankruptcy. Charles and David Koch fund many conservative groups, including organizations that are heavily involved in the Tea Party movement. Waxman’s move is likely designed to head off any such effort.
Waxman has often tried to impose on the affairs of private industry–often without merit or authority. In 2010, he tried to force several companies to face congressional hearings after they lowered their estimates of future earnings after the passage of Obamacare. The announcement had been required by law due to Obamacare’s cancelation of a tax credit. Waxman later canceled the hearings, perhaps to save himself embarrassment.