Government shutdown hits Consumer Electronics Show

( Photo: CES )

Las Vegas — Technology is great, but it can’t solve all problems.

The government shutdown has forced the cancellation of several scheduled speakers at the Consumer Electronics Show.

The world’s largest tech show gets fully underway tomorrow, but the government shutdown has forced several federal government speakers to cancel.

Canceled speakers include Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai and other officials from agencies including the Federal Trade Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

“Because of the government shutdown, some of our scheduled government speakers at CES 2019 have alerted us that they must cancel their travel to the show,” Gary Shapiro, head of the Consumer Technology Association, wrote in  a statement. “As a result, some of our scheduled CES 2019 programming and speakers will change. We urge attendees who planned to hear U.S. federal government speakers to check the sessions on the website to ensure those individuals are still speaking.”

U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao is still expected to deliver a keynote talk Wednesday on federal initiatives to advance drone technology and self-driving vehicles.

The annual Consumer Electronics Show is expected to bring 200,000 people to Las Vegas this week.

Linda Baker, Senior Environment and Technology Reporter

Linda Baker is a FreightWaves senior reporter based in Portland, Oregon. Her beat includes autonomous vehicles, the startup scene, clean trucking, and emissions regulations. Please send tips and story ideas to