FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr vilified Democratic Reps. Anna Eshoo and Jerry McNerney of California for writing television cable providers such as AT&T, Comcast, Apple and Amazon and virtually demanding they drop conservative news outlets such as Newsmax for “disseminating disinformation.”
Carr decried the letters – asking the chief executives of the companies seven questions with regard to policies on how they determine whether or not to carry particular channels – as an “effort to censor newsrooms.”
“By writing letters to the cable providers and other regulated entities that carry these news media outlets, the Democrats are sending a message that is as clear as it is troubling—these regulated entities will pay a price if the targeted newsrooms do not conform to Democrats’ preferred political narratives,” Carr wrote in a statement on his website. “This is a chilling transgression of the free speech rights that every media outlet in this country enjoys.”
Eshoo, 78, who represents California’s 18th Congressional District including Santa Cruz, and McNerney, 69, who represents the 9th Congressional District centered around Stockton, cited “experts” as declaring the “right-wing media ecosystem” – specifying Newsmax, One America News Network (OANN) and Fox News as “much more susceptible…to disinformation, lies, and half-truths.”
The senior members of the House energy and commerce committee demanded, among other things, that the CEOs provide “what moral or ethical principles (including those related to journalistic integrity, violence, medical information, and public health) do you apply in deciding which channels to carry or when to take adverse actions against a channel?”
Carr blasted Eschoo and McNerney as savagely attacking the First Amendment protection against free speech.
“Debate on matters of public interest should be robust, uninhibited, and wide open. More speech is better than less,” Carr wrote. “Yet the concerted effort by Democrats to drive political dissent from the public square represents a marked departure from these First Amendment norms. A newsroom’s decision about what stories to cover and how to frame them should be beyond the reach of any government official, not targeted by them.”
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.