Fairness Doctrine Issue in Indiana Senate Campaign
The Fairness Doctrine has become a hot issue in the contentious Republican U.S. Senate primary in Indian between incumbent Sen. Richard Lugar and his opponent state Treasurer Richard Mourdock.
The Lugar campaign cited that in Mourdock’s unsuccessful run for the U.S. House in 1992, he said he was for restoring the Fairness Doctrine, an FCC rule that put onerous equal time rules on broadcasters, that essentially served to limit the on air discussion of public affairs issues. For his part, Mourdock said he firmly opposes the Fairness Doctrine.
The longstanding rule was abolished under the Reagan administration’s FCC in 1987. The FCC chairman who saw it’s demise, Mark Fowler, is interviewed in The Right Frequency, which chronicles the abuses of the Fairness Doctrine by the Kennedy and Johnson administrations to thwart political opponents; the Supreme Court case that upheld the rule and the effort to end the rule.