House Republicans unveil new bill to ban resurrection of Fairness Doctrine

House Republicans have begun a new effort to make sure the Fairness Doctrine stays dead.

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) has introduced a bill to prevent the Federal Communications Commission from reviving the policy, a controversial and defunct standard that required broadcast licensees to offer "balanced" coverage. Critics saw it as an affront to free speech. 


Pence is joined on the bill by dozens of other Republicans, including various members of the Energy and Commerce Committee. Communications subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden (Ore.), who oversees the FCC, has signed onto the bill. 

The bill also has Democratic support, with Rep. John YarmuthJohn Allen YarmuthThe GOP's debt boogieman is hurting families and derailing our recovery Pelosi, Democrats unveil bills to rein in alleged White House abuses of power GOP, White House struggle to unite behind COVID-19 relief MORE (D-Ky.) getting on board. Other Energy and Commerce members include Communications vice chairman Reps. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) and Reps. Marsha BlackburnMarsha BlackburnSunday shows preview: Biden transition, COVID-19 spike in spotlight Senate GOP to drop documentary series days before election hitting China, Democrats over coronavirus Senate Judiciary to vote on subpoena for Twitter CEO next week MORE (R-Tenn.), Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), Joe Barton (R-Texas), and Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), among others. 

The effort comes ahead of a hearing next week that will include all four FCC commissioners and the chairman, and evinces the overwhelming feeling among House Republicans that this FCC has shown too much regulatory zeal.

None of the five FCC votes have said during Genachowski's tenure that they want to make an effort to revive the Fairness Doctrine.