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For Immediate Release
May 16, 2013

Contact:
Kenneth Chan
703-331-4520
press@nrb.org

 

 

  

IRS Reviving Fairness Doctrine?

Manassas, VA – NRB is greatly concerned after several NRB members reported suspicious questioning from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) this week. In one complaint, the IRS agent appears to be suggesting a re-birthed Fairness Doctrine, which has been scrapped by the Federal Communications Commission on First Amendment grounds.

Family Talk Action, led by long-time Christian radio host Dr. James Dobson, yesterday revealed in a press release that after it submitted sample radio programs to the IRS, an IRS agent insinuated the ministry would be denied tax-exempt status because: 

        “Ms. Medley responded… Family Talk Action is ‘not educational’ because it does not present
        all views. She continued, saying that Family Talk Action sounded like a ‘partisan right-wing
        group’ because, according to Ms. Medley, it only presents conservative viewpoints. She then
        added, ‘you're political’ because you ‘criticized President Obama, who was a candidate.’”
 
“I am alarmed by reports that suggest a federal official at the IRS instituting a de facto Fairness Doctrine,” stated NRB President & CEO Dr. Wright. “The FCC was right to purge that pernicious policy from the Code of Federal Regulations.  After driving a wooden stake in its heart, this vampire seems alive and well at the IRS.”
 
The Fairness Doctrine, first introduced in 1949, enabled the FCC to compel broadcasters to air opposing viewpoints on controversial issues deemed to be of public importance. The Fairness Doctrine, while not enforced since 1987, was finally and completely eliminated from the Code of Federal Regulations in August 2011.


About NRB
The National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) is a non-partisan, international association of Christian communicators whose member organizations represent millions of listeners, viewers, and readers. Our mission is to advance biblical truth; to promote media excellence; and to defend free speech. In addition to promoting standards of excellence, integrity, and accountability, NRB provides networking, educational, ministry, and fellowship opportunities for its members. Learn more at www.nrb.org.

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