S.C. Democrats to only allow MSNBC to cover state convention live; other networks barred

S.C. Democrats to only allow MSNBC to cover state convention live; other networks barred
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The South Carolina Democratic Party will only allow MSNBC to cover its state party convention, barring news outlets including Fox News, CNN and C-SPAN in an unprecedented move.

Speakers at the event will include 21 of the 24 Democratic presidential candidates.

In an email obtained by the Examiner on Tuesday, the South Carolina Democratic Party announced MSNBC had "exclusive rights" to the event, while adding a warning that "any footage taken by other outlets may not be aired live."

"IMPORTANT: MSNBC has exclusive rights to broadcast the 2019 South Carolina Democratic Convention," the email reads. "Any footage of the convention taken by other outlets may not be aired live, and is EMBARGOED FOR THREE HOURS after the close of the convention. This embargo includes any live-streaming from social media platforms."

The South Carolina Democratic Party press office did not reply to a request for comment from The Hill.

Steve Scully, C-SPAN's political editor, told The Hill in a statement that the network is "deeply disappointed" in the state party's decision.

"C-SPAN is deeply disappointed that the SCDP agreed to give exclusive live rights to MSNBC," Scully said. 

"We have reluctantly pulled our crew from this event and will not be able to cover it for our viewers," he continued. "C-SPAN is in as many homes as MSNBC, would have been the only outlet to offer complete, commercial free coverage of the speeches of 20 Democratic presidential candidates, as well as state and local Democratic officials." 

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Fox News confirmed to The Hill it has filed a complaint.

CNN told the Washington Examiner it also had filed a complaint. CNN did not reply to a request for comment from The Hill.

-- Updated at 7:00 p.m.