The Christian Coalition has put out an action alert to its members urging them to push Congress to require cable and other multichannel video providers to carry all of a broadcaster's free multicast digital channels.
"Time is of the essence. Without this 'Multicast/Must-carry' law, the cable and satellite companies could possibly not add new Christian channels. When this law is passed it will open up more religious programming on cable systems across America," the coalition said.
They are working to modify House and Senate DTV transition bills now winding their way through Congress. Neither currently mandates cable carriage of DTV signals, though a planned third Senate DTV bill may address that issue.
Earlier in the week National Religious Broadcasters President Frank Wright weighed in on the House and Senate DTV bills. He argued against a House bill provision allowing cable to convert a DTV signal or HDTV signal to a lower resolution, which Wright said could doom multicasting.
The coalition provided links to Senate and House e-mail forms and phone numbers for every senator and representative, as well as the White House.