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fcclogo NEWS

Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
News media information 202 / 418-0500
Fax-On-Demand 202 / 418-2830
Internet: http://www.fcc.gov
TTY: 202/418-2555

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).

October 2, 2000
David Fiske (202) 418-0513

Statement by FCC Chairman William Kennard on EchoStar
Announcement of Political Candidate Airtime

The announcement today that the direct broadcast satellite company, EchoStar, is creating a dedicated channel, Vote 2000, to broadcast information and free candidate airtime on the Presidential campaign shows that the important concept of using television to serve the public interest is not limited to traditional over-the-air broadcasting.

As more and more viewers exercise their expanding rights to choose television programming from either broadcasting, cable, satellite, and soon the Internet, it is heartening that the DBS industry recognizes the powerful rule that television plays in political campaigns and that it is willing to step up and serve the public interest by airing important election programming.

I commend EchoStar for its leadership in making this political programming available, and its commitment to the fundamental premise that an informed electorate is vital to our democratic society.

- FCC -