Rep. Mike Flood, R-Neb., on Tuesday criticized DirecTV for removing Newsmax from its channel lineup, saying that rural Americans are unable to watch the network unless it's available by satellite.
Flood said on "National Report" that he "was one of 40 members of the House that signed a letter as soon as I heard about" DirecTV dropping Newsmax, "and I have been getting so many calls into my office from Nebraskans that say, 'we want this channel. We want to be able to watch it.'"
The congressman added, "one thing you have to remember is: I live in a rural part of the country where we don't have access to broadband like everybody else does.
"And so we are dependent on the satellite signals because when you're running a farm … 20 minutes or 30 minutes from really good cell service and you don't have the type of fiber that people in cities and communities that are larger have, you rely on satellite dish delivery service for TV.
DirecTV customers call toll free at 877-763-9762 to complain, demand Newsmax is returned! Oppose censorship – sign The Petition – Click Here
Flood said, "We forget about how important that is in rural America, and when you start taking channels off of that platform you start disenfranchising Americans, especially in rural areas where satellite TV is really the only good option when it comes to being able to watch different channels.
"We don't have access to YouTube TV in some parts of Nebraska."
DirecTV said Newsmax and conservative channel OAN were removed as "cost-cutting" measures at the same time the company reported profits last year of $2.7 billion. DirecTV claimed Newsmax was demanding "excessive fees" that would cost in the "tens of millions" of dollars.
Newsmax has denied these claims, saying it was seeking a fee of about $1 per cable subscriber per year, among the lowest fees asked for in cable, and that the total amount of the deal was a fraction of "tens of millions."
"This was never about the fees being excessive," said Chris Ruddy, CEO of Newsmax. "DirecTV's position has always been that Newsmax of all cable news channels should never get any cable fee whatsoever, not one penny. "
DirecTV continues to carry 22 left-leaning news channels, many with much lower ratings than Newsmax. Those channels get license fees.
Actions to Take Now
1. DirecTV customers call toll free at 877-763-9762 to complain, demand Newsmax is back on air!
2. Call your congressman or senator at 202-224-3121 and demand they stop AT&T/DirecTV's censorship of NEWSMAX — ask them to give you a date on the hearings!
3. Go to our online petition and get more info: iWantNewsmax.com.
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