(PatriotWise.com) – A freshman Republican lawmaker is asking DirecTV to reconsider removing Newsmax from its channel lineup, expressing concern that dropping the conservative news network would affect the ability of Republican lawmakers to reach constituents, according to the Washington Examiner.
In a letter to the TV provider, freshman Texas Republican Wesley Hunt claimed that DirecTV’s failure to reach an agreement with Newsmax was a politically motivated attempt to censor conservative media.
Hunt claimed that DirecTV “de-platforming” the right-wing news outlet “is the latest development” in an “ongoing campaign to purge” from the “public sphere” any voices with which the Left disagrees.
Hunt claimed that Newsmax, which typically rates far lower than Fox, MSNBC, and CNN, is “one of the most-watched cable news channels” in the country. He said the public need access to a free press “now more than ever.”
Hunt also appears to accuse DirecTV of lying, writing that he is sure the company will claim that dropping Newsmax was “purely a business decision,” adding that such a claim is “hard to accept” when a channel like Vice Media is still part of DirecTV’s channel lineup. Hunt questions why Vice Media continues to profit from its inclusion on DirecTV when it is “a ratings failure.”
In his letter, Hunt decries DirecTV removing Newsmax less than a year after One America News was dropped, arguing that Republican lawmakers will be losing “two of the three cable news channels that reach conservative voters on a platform that primarily serves conservative-leaning areas of the country.”
Hunt is asking DirecTV to provide “ratings” comparisons on the networks carried by DirecTV along with the fees DirecTV pays to the networks.
Hunt’s letter was co-signed by 41 other Republican House members.
In a statement to the Washington Examiner, a spokesperson for DirecTV said the company has already responded to Hunt’s letter.
The spokesperson told the Examiner that while the company would like to carry the news network, Newsmax is seeking “significant fees that we cannot pass on to our broad customer base.” The spokesperson noted that Newsmax can still be viewed via its website, YouTube, and multiple streaming platforms.
Newsmax was dropped by DirecTV last Tuesday.
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