Republican owned television network to air Anti-Kerry special before election

This post was written by marc on October 9, 2004
Posted Under: Politics

This is why central ownership of thye media is a bad idea.

Conservative TV Group to Air Anti-Kerry Film
Sinclair, with reach into many of the nation’s homes, will preempt prime-time shows. Experts call the move highly unusual.

By Elizabeth Jensen, Times Staff Writer

NEW YORK — The conservative-leaning Sinclair Broadcast Group, whose television outlets reach nearly a quarter of the nation’s homes with TV, is ordering its stations to preempt regular programming just days before the Nov. 2 election to air a film that attacks Sen. John F. Kerry’s activism against the Vietnam War, network and station executives familiar with the plan said Friday.

Sinclair’s programming plan, communicated to executives in recent days and coming in the thick of a close and intense presidential race, is highly unusual even in a political season that has been marked by media controversies.

Sinclair has told its stations — many of them in political swing states such as Ohio and Florida — to air “Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal,” sources said. The film, funded by Pennsylvania veterans and produced by a veteran and former Washington Times reporter, features former POWs accusing Kerry — a decorated Navy veteran turned war protester — of worsening their ordeal by prolonging the war. Sinclair will preempt regular prime-time programming from the networks to show the film, which may be classified as news programming, according to TV executives familiar with the plan.

Executives at Sinclair did not return calls seeking comment, but the Kerry campaign accused the company of pressuring its stations to influence the political process.

Reader Comments

I have no problem with this as long as it doesn’t violate any election-related laws.

The Democratic Party has the showing of the Michael Moore film Farenheit 911 to look forward to. I’m guessing that the Republican Party needed something to counter it.

Whether either broadcast will help substantially in voting decisions of those not solidly entrenched in their current political views is debatable.

I’m sure both parties will raise a big stink over the broadcast of any overtly negative propaganda piece against their candidate.

If I were a judge deciding on the legality of either piece and it were my judgement call (as opposed to clearly being legal or clearly being illegal) regarding their violating election statutes, I’m trying to think whether I’d allow or disallow their showing. I honestly don’t know how I’d decide.

Written By Gerhswin on October 9th, 2004 @ 3:02 pm

I saw Going Upriver last week and came out of the theater thinking what a perfect counterweight it could be to the Swiftboat liar swill if the movie was widely shown. Just a thought. Maybe this film could be shown on non-Sinclair outlets in some of these same swing state markets if the broadcasters are not totally intimidated by the Bush regime. We don’t have the Fairness Doctrine anymore but maybe somebody could make this happen. The film shows the true story of the VVAW and highlights Kerry’s emergence as a leader. Remind me again what W was doing at that time?

Written By Tom on October 9th, 2004 @ 10:49 pm

Agreed. Its fair game, but only if its done “fairly” — air an anti-bush and anti-kerry film in one day. But then there’d be the hubbub about which film goes first and which goes last and why and then accusations of conservative or liberal bias just from that.

Written By Shadow Hawk on October 10th, 2004 @ 12:15 am

I was searching, when did they say they were going to play F-9/11 on national television? I know it recently came out on DVD, but I hadn’t heard anything about it being shown nationally. It is also common knowledge that Michael Moore had not filed for the Academy Awards hoping that the documentary might be shown on the public air, but I hadn’t heard of that happening.

I ask this because this is an important difference between being able to buy something, and having it shown on national television. In the interest of fair policy, if they are going to show this movie, they should also show such a documentary as F-9/11. Either way neither piece should influence voters, because a candidate should not be judged on what he did 30 years ago, it should be on their current vision for America.

Written By M.Wills on October 10th, 2004 @ 8:24 am

M.Wills, I searched the internet for a good half-hour just now trying to find references to Fahrenheit 911 being broadcast on network or even cable television. I was unable to find any such references.

I don’t know what I heard or read that made me think that Fahrenheit 911 was going to be broadcast on American television. I found references to the movie’s showing on Cuban and middle eastern television stations already.

Written By Gershwin on October 10th, 2004 @ 2:41 pm

This is just another attempt by the Republican Party, and their affiliates/cohorts, to circumvent the restrictions with regard to the equal time rule.

As a lifelong registered Republican, I am appalled at the new lows that the GOP will stoop. Not only does this “anti-Kerry” film reaffirm to me, and anyone with a brain for that matter, that the GOP is totally out of control and believes that the rules only apply to the other guy, it should also serve as a reminder that the well-paid spin doctors on the GOP payroll hope that they can brain-wash more members of the public.

I cannot believe that there will not be any intervention, legal or otherwise, with regard to stopping the airing of this new ad, because that is just what it is, an ad.

And for those of you who think that it is only fair to air this anti-Kerry ad in response to the Farenheit 9/11, please keep in mind that Michael Moore is not affiliated with the Democratic Party nor is he on their payroll or receives remuneration of any kind from any entity associated with the Democratic Party. SINCLAIR BROADCASTING, on the other hand, CAN’T SAY THE SAME.

Do yourselves a BIG favor…EDUCATE YOURSELF on the issues and the candidates. Don’t just blindly believe everything you read in print or see on the television. For instance, if you seriously believe that all of the people at the Bush rallys just happened to all be supporters of Bush, are you in serious need of a wake-up call. I know for a fact that ALL persons at those rallys are screened and handpicked. If you even look like a Democratic, you are not allowed anywhere near the rally. If you speak up during the rally against Bush, like many others before during the 2000 campaign, you are either arrested or detained by the local police agency on a bogus charge. Gee, I thought that the Constitution guaranteed ALL Americans, Freedom of Speech.

Believe it…the rallys are nothing more than a feel-good party to make other people not in attendance that Bush has supporters.

Written By Shelly on October 10th, 2004 @ 7:18 pm

I just wanted to let you know I was reading TVGuide online last night, and they mentioned that Moore- I realize that he does not have any affiliation with the dems- was fairly close to reaching an agreement with inDemand to show F-9/11 for 9.95$. Again, to all repubs that is not national television like the Sinclair broadcast groups.

brief article:

On the topic of Michael Moore, I don’t know if anyone had heard, but the Michigan GOP has filed a Request for a Criminal Complaint against Moore. They are seeking to say that he is bribing voters by registering thousands- if not tens of thousands- of youthful voters. The issue in question is that he is giving the guys underwear and the girls ramen noodles, if they promise to vote. I don’t know what the legal ramifications of the case are, but under the Michigan Election Code, Moore is technically wrong.

“Section 931(1)(b) of the Michigan Election Code (Michigan Compiled Laws (“MCL”) 168.931(1)(b)) provides that a person who performs such an act is guilty of a misdemeanor:

“(b) A person shall not, either before, on, or after an election, for the person’s own benefit or on behalf of any other person, receive, agree, or contract for valuable consideration for 1 or more of the following:

(i) Voting or agreeing to vote, or inducing or attempting to induce another to vote, at an election.”

Although, my personal opinion on the matter has two parts. First, if the republicans are for lawsuit and tort reform, why are they seeking this trial? This is a great waste of tax payer money for a trivial matter like giving college kids underwear and ramen noodles. For those of you that have been out of college for a while, I would put clean underwear and ramen right behind money for necessities. For a list of other great tort reform flip-floppers I submit this website: Second, the GOP left out what class of misdemeanor this violation is, and the fact that it is a misdemeanor. There are generally, and this varies from state to state, three classes of misdemeanor. The most serious carrying with it a maximum penalty of one year jail time, and/or $2,500 fine. The fine alone wouldn’t even warrant or pay for the court costs. Of course on the opposite end of the spectrum the lowest class carries a maximum penalty of one month jail time and/or a $50 fine. Again, a great waste of tax payer money.

Obviously this thing is not black and white, and I do agree that Moore should have checked the legality of his “Slacker Uprising” Tour policies. But on a standpoint that he is registering thousands of historically lower turnout voters, this is just another attempt by the republican party to stifle voters who historically lean democratic.

Written By M.Wills on October 11th, 2004 @ 6:52 am

How about this cat “Sherwood”?

From Gorenfeld’s quoting FRONTLINE

quoting…..The week after talking to Regnery, FRONTLINE obtained a copy of a letter addressed to Sun Myung Moon. The letter was written by James Gavin, a Moon aide. Gavin tells Moon he reviewed the “overall tone and factual contents” of Inquisition before publication and suggested revisions. Gavin adds that the author “Mr. Sherwood has assured me that all this will be done when the manuscript is sent to the publisher.” Gavin concludes by telling Moon, “When all of our suggestions have been incorporated, the book will be complete and in my opinion will make a significant impact…. In addition to silencing our critics now, the book should be invaluable in persuading others of our legitimacy for many years to come.”……..

For someone who won a Pulitzer for digging up the dirt on the Vatican’s bank, Sherwood sure seems to see what he is looking for…
Look at just a smidgen of what he must have ignored to write his Moonie apologist book. (note that the money figure quoted of $120 million was known in 1987. The claims now total 800 million conned out the Japanese by Moon’s “church”. The lawyer’s group says it represents less than 1/10 of the actual figure. That would mean Moon made over EIGHT BILLION DOLLARS this way.

more on the lawyers and the money from Japan used to manipulate our country in footnotes, starting around #45 in this

Written By Pahoo on October 11th, 2004 @ 11:14 am

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