Trump threatens broadcasting licenses after NBC report

Trump threatens broadcasting licenses after NBC report

Trump threatens broadcasting licenses after NBC report

After suggesting last week that American media outlets should be investigated by Congress, President Donald Trump on Wednesday appeared to threaten NBC's broadcast license over the network's reporting on tensions between the President and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Indeed, Trump's threat seems rather hard to carry out given the Federal Communications Commission does not directly license networks.

Trump was responding to a news report that he had said during a meeting at the Pentagon in July that he wanted what amounted to almost a ten-fold increase in the number of USA nuclear weapons.

Broadcast licenses have previously been revoked by authoritarian leaders including the late former president of Venezuela Hugo Chavez, who revoked a number of broadcast licenses of stations that displayed stringent anti-Chavez views.

The US television network reported that Trump told generals and security aides over the summer that he wanted a "nearly tenfold increase" in the US nuclear arsenal. "Bad for country!" he wrote.

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Both Bennet and DeGette are Democrats. "It's always something about what Trump tweeted this morning, or some gotcha piece from the Washington Post - it's relentless". The FCC issues broadcast licenses to stations. The Los Angeles Times reported that NBC and other networks don't hold licenses that cover their entire networks. These licenses must periodically be renewed. "And people should look into it", the president added.

On Oct. 5, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump "is an incredible advocate of the First Amendment, but with the First Amendment, with those freedoms also come responsibilities".

President Donald Trump's official portrait from Wikimedia Commons.

US President Donald J. Trump (R) shakes hands with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a meeting in the Oval Office.

Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) wrote a letter to Pai today, urging the chairman to "maintain the FCC's charter as an independent agency and withstand any urges from President Trump to harm the news media and infringe upon the First Amendment". Markey also asked Pai to provide Congress with "information about any correspondence or communications from the White House or other members of the Trump administration that have encouraged you to take action against a broadcaster".

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