Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai dismissed a petition (from the so-called “Free Press” advocacy group) for the agency to investigate news networks that continue to air President Donald Trump’s press briefings on the China coronavirus.
BizPacReview Pai’s tweet and press statement comes after Washington Post columnist Margaret Sullivan demanded Saturday that news networks stop live-broadcasting Trump’s near-daily coronavirus briefings.
The independent government agency slapped down a request from advocacy group Free Press because press freedoms are too important, Pai said in a tweet Monday announcing the decision. The tweet included screenshot of a press statement addressing the petition.
“The federal government will not — and never should — investigate broadcasters for their editorial judgments,” Pai said in the statement. “We leave it to broadcasters to determine for themselves how to cover this national emergency, including live events involving our nation’s leaders.”
He added: “Under my leadership, the FCC has always stood firmly in defense of Americans’ First Amendment freedoms, including freedom of the press. And so long as I am Chairman of this agency, we always will.”
What’s more, we have Pai to thank for the FCC voting 3-2 to repeal net neutrality in June 2018.