|Federal Communications Commission
1919 - M Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
|News media information 202 / 418-0500
Fax-On-Demand 202 / 418-2830
This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).
|January 28, 1998|
PRESS STATEMENT OF COMMISSIONER SUSAN NESS
The President's call for television broadcasters to provide free or reduced cost TV
time to candidates raises an important issue. Citizens are rightly concerned about the
massive amounts of money needed to run for public office today. We know the largest
component of these expenses is broadcast time.|
I agree that the FCC should initiate a proceeding to examine the matter of candidate access to the public airwaves. Such a proceeding would enable us to build a record based on suggestions from candidates, broadcasters, and members of the public. It would enable us to review various ways in which the President's goals could be accomplished.
I believe it will be especially useful to incorporate the views of the Gore Commission, the presidential advisory committee on public interest obligations of television broadcasters in a digital environment. I hope this group, which has already met a number of times, will develop recommendations that creatively and thoughtfully address issues raised by advocates for free time as well as by commercial and noncommercial broadcasters.
I also believe the Congress will help to inform our views on free time, as it considers the larger question of political campaign finance reform. As the new session of Congress opens, I am hopeful that the legislative attempts to enact meaningful reform will succeed this year.