DirecTV won't boot 700 Club

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Even if DirecTV Inc. dumps ABC Family at the end of the month, the satellite
operator said it would still air TV evangelist Pat Robertson's The700
Club
program, which airs on ABC Family.

The pronouncement comes after Robertson urged viewers to protest DirecTV's
threats to stop carrying ABC Family as of March 31, when the channel's carriage
deal expires.

"Our argument isn't with [The 700 Club]," said Michael Thorton,
DirecTV's head of programming acquisitions. "We will continue to air 700
Club
at scheduled time on the same channel, regardless of fact that we're
not carrying ABC Family."

Thorton added that no one from the show has responded to DirecTV's offer.

DirecTV and ABC Family are haggling over carriage fees and, while still
negotiating, aren't close to a new deal. Said Thorton, "We're still a
considerable distance apart."

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