Murkowski leans on broadcasters to nix Miller ad

Senator Murkowski has now resorted to threats against Alaskan broadcasting companies to silence opposing political views.

On 4 October, a Murkowski lawyer sent eight letters to eleven major Alaskan broadcasters threatening to have the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) revoke their broadcast licenses if they air a specific Joe Miller commercial. According to the letter, "when a station broadcasts false or incorrect advertisements, the station can be held liable for such action in a court of law and can lose their broadcasting license."

I have to ask, has Murkowski ever seen an American election season before? Every election season I see advertisements from opposing candidates that make completely opposite claims. Every election I see politicians make claims, which the other side denounces as "lies." It is the responsibility of the free press to investigate candidates' claims and inform the public what is really going on, and it is the responsibility of the public to skeptically evaluate each candidate to determine who will best represent them.

Remember that part of the Bill of Rights which states "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press"? If a candidate makes a false claim, they are usually exposed and lose public confidence- and votes. But now Murkowski has appointed herself as the arbitrator of determining the truth in political advertising. I find it disturbing that a sitting Senator, with all the power she wields, believes that she must silence the opposition instead of engaging in political debate. I find it disturbing that an Alaskan Senator is resorting to threatening every major Alaskan television broadcast station and then flaunt the threats on her own website.

For the legal basis of this claim, the Murkowski lawyer relied on an online article from written by the co-author of "FCC Lobbying: A Handbook of Insider Tips and Practical Advice" who works in Washington D.C. Since Murkowski is so concerned about outside influences in this campaign, I have to ask, who are paying the Murkowski lawyers to threaten Alaskan broadcasting companies, Alaskans, or Murkowski's lobbyist friends in D.C.?

If you experience technical problems, please write to