Reader Sammy on the Fairness Doctrine

Reader sammy sends along a link to this article at The Hill:

The House voted overwhelmingly Thursday to prohibit the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from using taxpayer dollars to impose the Fairness Doctrine on broadcasters who feature conservative radio hosts such as Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.

By a vote of 309-115, lawmakers amended the Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill to bar the FCC from requiring broadcasters to balance conservative content with liberal programming such as Air America.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said on Tuesday that the government should revive the Fairness Doctrine, a policy crafted in 1929 that required broadcasters to balance political content with different points of view.

“It’s time to reinstitute the Fairness Doctrine,” he said. “I have this old-fashioned attitude that when Americans hear both sides of the story, they’re in a better position to make a decision.”

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Senate Rules Committee, said this week that she would review the constitutional and legal issues involved in re-establishing the doctrine.

Sen. John Kerry (Mass.), the Democratic Party’s 2004 presidential nominee, also said recently that the Fairness Doctrine should return.

In 1985 the FCC discarded the policy after deciding that it restricted journalistic freedom and “actually inhibit[ed] the presentation of controversial issues of public importance to the detriment of the public and in degradation of the editorial prerogative of broadcast journalists,” according to a Congressional Research Service report.

Sammy also sends comments:

Conservative talk radio is one of the most powerful weapons of the Republicans. It reaches, reinforces, and converts millions. It has resulted in, off the top of my head:

1) Derailing Nationalized Health Care (Hillarycare). It was on the fast track until a local conservative host in Seattle organized a protest that ended up spreading across the country.

2) Derailing recent Immigration Bill

3) Derailing Dubai ports deal

4) (Because of the narrow margin involved), electing George W Bush twice.

The democrat competition, Air(head) America, failed miserably in the market.

I figured conservative talk radio would be a huge and easy target for the Democrats in power. I guess not.

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