Obama Says No To Fairness Doctrine

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Sen. Barack Obama's opposition to re-imposing the Fairness Doctrine may not be enough to put a stake in that issue, which continues to be exhumed by Republicans concerned that the doctrine might be used to suppress conservative speech.

But a source in the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would not rule out a push from House Democrats to bring it back, either in this Congress or the next.

The doctrine required broadcasters to air the other side of controversial issues of public importance. The doctrine's 1987 demise is seen as the catalyst for the rise of conservative talk radio and its often-pointed attacks on Democrats and their policies.

Obama's press secretary, Michael Ortiz, told B&C that Obama "considers this debate to be a distraction from the conversation we should be having about opening up the airwaves and modern communications to as many diverse viewpoints as possible." Obama is more concerned about achieving diversity through "media-ownership caps, network neutrality, public broadcasting, as well as increasing minority ownership of broadcasting and print outlets."