A bipartisan group of United States Senators wrote a letter Sunday calling for expanding payroll assistance to struggling local newspapers and broadcast stations that have seen reduced advertising revenue during the nation’s coronavirus epidemic.
U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John Kennedy (R-LA) and John Boozman (R-AR) have requested that Senate leaders amend the rules of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) in order to make thousands of local newspapers and television and radio stations eligible for assistance.
Many local outlets across the nation are currently ineligible for the funding because they are owned by parent companies too large to qualify, particularly in local television (i.e. Sinclair, Nexstar, TEGNA).
“Ensuring that local news outlets remain viable at this critical time is not only a matter of fairness, but is essential to public health,” the senators wrote in their letter.
Louisiana newspapers and broadcasters have been hit hard. ⁰
— John Kennedy (@SenJohnKennedy) April 19, 2020
The bipartisan group of four senators added that local newspapers have lost as much as 50 percent of advertising revenue. Meanwhile, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) says some local broadcasters have reported as much as a 90 percent loss in ad revenue.
“Waiving SBA’s affiliation rules for local newspapers and broadcasters and ensuring that financial assistance flows to the local affiliate, not the parent company, would allow these small, local operations to be eligible for much-needed financial relief. Local newspapers and broadcasters have been hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis, are essential for maintaining a well-informed public, and deserve our help,” the senators wrote.
According to Reuters, “tens of thousands of local media workers are being forced to take unpaid furloughs or seeing cuts to paychecks, while other outlets are shrinking staff and reducing the frequency of printing, and some smaller newspapers in California, Vermont and South Dakota are closing.”
To read the senators’ full letter, click here.
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Gallup poll: GOP holds large advantage over Dems in economy, national security
A recent Gallup poll shows Americans overwhelmingly have faith in Republicans over Democrats when it comes to the economy. In fact, the GOP “holists largest advantage on the economy in over 30 years, with 53% of Americans trusting Republicans more than Democrats on the issue” writes the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The poll holds Republicans at a 14-point lead over Democrats for handling the economy better. “The GOP scored 10 points higher on the economy than last year, marking the largest margin between the two parties since 1991.”
Gallup’s publication of the poll is titled ‘Neither Party Well-Liked, but GOP Holds Advantage on Issues.’ It may not be a shock that “The two major political parties remain unpopular in the U.S., with 56% of Americans viewing the Republican Party unfavorably and 58% saying the same of the Democratic Party” but the GOP holds “historically ample leads.”
— Reagan Reese (@reaganreese_) September 26, 2023
“Fifty-three percent of Americans believe the Republican Party will do a better job of keeping the country prosperous over the next few years, whereas 39% choose the Democratic Party.”
“A slightly larger majority, 57%, have greater faith in the Republican Party to protect the country from international terrorism and military threats, while 35% favor the Democrats.”
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