Contact: Colleen O'Boyle at 703.683.5004

Bozell Challenges FCC Chair Copps To Call On Speaker Pelosi And Leader Reid To Allow a Vote On The Broadcaster Freedom Act
May 19, 2009 05:24 ET

Alexandria, VA  – Acting Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Michael Copps offered his view last Thursday that the anti-free speech Censorship Doctrine, also mis-known as the “Fairness” Doctrine is “long gone” and that “it’s not coming back.”

But for the second time in a week, Chairman Copps called those who are concerned about its return “conspiracy theorists” who are engaged in “issue mongering” by “resurrecting the straw man of a bye-gone Fairness Doctrine.”

Media Research Center (MRC) President Brent Bozell today reminded Chairman Copps of just some of the many members of Congress who have recently called for a return of the so-called “Fairness” Doctrine:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer

Former President Bill Clinton

Senator Chuck Schumer

Senator Dianne Feinstein

Senator Dick Durbin

Senator Debbie Stabenow

Senator John Kerry

Senator Tom Harkin

Senator Jeff Bingaman

Senator Bernie Sanders

Congressman Dennis Kucinich

Congressman Maurice Hinchey

Congressman John Dingell

Congressman Louise Slaughter

Congressman Anna Eshoo



Mr. Bozell reminded Chairman Copps that last summer Speaker Pelosi would not allow a full, fair up or down vote on the Broadcaster Freedom Act (BFA) - which will prevent the FCC from reinstating the alleged “Fairness” Doctrine – and instead left it languishing in committee.  Not a single Democrat – including two who were BFA co-sponsors – would sign the bill’s discharge petition to get it out onto the floor for a vote.

And Mr. Bozell reminded Chairman Copps that he will soon be joined on the FCC by up to four new Commissioners (out of a total of five) who may not share his affinity for free speech and may vote to reinstate the so-called “Fairness” Doctrine.   

So Mr. Bozell today challenged Chairman Copps to demand that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid allow a stand-alone vote of the full House and Senate on the Broadcaster Freedom Act. 

Media Research Center President Brent Bozell:

“I am most appreciative that my friend – FCC Chairman Michael Copps – has no intention of reinstating the anti-First Amendment so-called ‘Fairness’ Doctrine.  But his statement that those of us concerned about its reimposition are ‘issue mongering’ ‘conspiracy theorists’ is off-base given the stated desires of so many members of Congress.

“When this many high-powered elected officials are calling for a return of the mis-named ‘Fairness’ Doctrine, and are actively opposing a vote on the bill to prevent the FCC from reinstating it, it isn’t a conspiracy theory.  It’s a determination to shut down free speech on talk radio.

“The solution is simple: Chairman Copps should call on Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid to allow a full, fair stand alone vote on the Broadcaster Freedom Act.  That way we will know once and for all how each member of Congress thinks – are they for free speech, or are they for the ‘Fairness’ Doctrine?” 


To schedule an interview with MRC President Brent Bozell or another MRC spokesperson,

please contact Tim Scheiderer (x. 126) or Colleen O’Boyle (x. 122) at (703) 683-5004.


(The MRC heads up the Free Speech Alliance, made up of sixty-six organizations dedicated to preserving the First Amendment and protecting talk radio from governmental regulatory abuse.  The FSA petition for free speech can be found at

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