Rep. Mike Lawler, R-N.Y., told Newsmax on Tuesday that it is "critically important" that DirecTV restore Newsmax to its satellite service.
"In America we have freedom of speech, and we need to respect that, and respect diversity of thought," Lawler said during "National Report." "You may not agree with everything that is said on a given network, but people have the right to say it, and they have the right to be heard."
DirecTV and its parent company AT&T pulled the network from its lineup late last month, cutting it off from its 13 million subscribers over what it called a "carriage fee dispute."
DirecTV customers call toll free at 877-763-9762 to complain, demand Newsmax is returned! Oppose censorship – sign The Petition – Click Here
Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy said in a statement at the time that the move was politically motivated instead, pointing to 22 other "liberal" news channels on the service that were paid fees, unlike Newsmax.
DirecTV also pulled the conservative One America News network from its platform in April.
Lawler said he signed on to a letter to DirecTV and AT&T before they pulled the channel, asking them to "negotiate in good faith" for a solution to the problem.
"I am hopeful they will heed the call and really finalize an agreement with Newsmax," he said. "It is critically important for DirecTV to work with Newsmax to come up with an agreement that works for both parties, and ensures that Newsmax is broadcast once again on DirecTV so that people from all over the country can hear opinions and news from the outlet of their choosing."
Newsmax has reported that AT&T has lost an estimated $10 billion in its stock value since dropping the network due in part to many people canceling the services offered by both companies.
Lawler was also asked to comment on former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley's announcement Tuesday that she is running for president as a Republican in 2024, challenging former President Donald Trump for the nomination.
Lawler said that he hopes the GOP primary race will be civil, and that Republicans need to stay focused on the goal of retaking the presidency.
"The focus has to be on winning in 2024," he said. "We certainly have some rising stars in the Republican Party. We have people that have been around for quite a while, but we have to work together and focus on the task at hand. America is in crisis, and we need leaders who are going to move us in the right direction, and can also win a general election."
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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