The Senate on Monday voted unanimously to postpone the upcoming transition from analog to digital television broadcasting by four months to June 12, setting the stage for Congress to pass the proposal as early as Tuesday.
Monday's Senate vote is a big victory for the Obama administration and Democrats in Congress, who have been pushing for a delay amid growing concerns that too many Americans won't be ready for the currently scheduled Feb. 17 changeover.
The Nielsen Co. estimates that more than 6.5 million U.S. households that rely on analog television sets to pick up over-the-air broadcast signals could see their TV sets go dark next month if the transition is not postponed.
"Delaying the upcoming DTV switch is the right thing to do," said Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., author of the bill to push back the deadline. "I firmly believe that our nation is not yet ready to make this transition at this time."