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| | |-+  Pence takes aim at 'archaic government control of speech'
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Author Topic: Pence takes aim at 'archaic government control of speech'  (Read 188 times)
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« on: July 03, 2007, 05:12:06 PM »

Pence takes aim at 'archaic government control of speech'

The U.S. House has temporarily blocked the Federal Communications Commission from reinstating the Fairness Doctrine, which would require broadcasters to give equal time to liberal and conservative views on controversial issues.

Senators Trent Lott (R-Mississippi) and Dianne Feinstein (D-California) recently suggested the radio and television airwaves should be subject to a rule that would govern the type and amount of political discourse that could be aired. In response, the House voted overwhelmingly to bar the FCC from using taxpayer dollars to impose the Fairness Doctrine on conservative talk-radio hosts. The amendment to the Financial Services Appropriations bill was sponsored by Congressman Mike Pence (R-Indiana), himself a former radio host.

"We felt it was important to seize an opportunity to go to the floor and to begin the process of defeating any effort to bring the Fairness Doctrine back to American broadcasting law," Pence notes. "We had a strong, bipartisan vote (309-115), but all we achieved was a one-year moratorium on the FCC's ability to bring this archaic government control of speech back to the airwaves.

In response to what he terms a "short-term fix," Pence has introduced the Broadcaster Freedom Act (H.R. 2905), which would prevent any future administration and the FCC from imposing the Fairness Doctrine without an act of Congress. The Act is designed to protect conservative talk-radio hosts from being required to give equal time to liberal and conservative views on controversial issues.

The Indiana Republican says he felt the need to counter liberals in Congress who "want to return the broadcast airwaves to a regulated marketplace." That scenario, he explains, "would require religious broadcasters, as well as talk radio, to carefully monitor that all different viewpoints were presented on the public airwaves -- and to face the possibility of high legal bills in the event that the fairness of their programming was challenged."

Pence has more than 100 co-sponsors to the Broadcaster Freedom Act. A companion bill has been introduced in the U.S. Senate.

Joh 9:4  I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.
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