ORLANDO, February 24, 2014 — The law firm of Perkins Coie now appears to be the strong arm of the FCC and the Democratic Party. Americans for Prosperity has published a letter they allege to be from Perkins Coie. The letter appears to threaten revocation of FCC licenses to any station airing an Americans for Prosperity anti-Obamacare television commercial.
Addressed Dear Station Manger, the letter says:
“We write regarding an advertisement with questionable claims sponsored by American for Prosperity (“AFP”) that may be airing on your stations. This ad, entitled “Julie’s Story: It’s Time to Listen,” claims Julie Boonstra had her “insurance … cancelled because of Obamacare,” and that now her “out of pocket costs are so high it’s unaffordable.” For the sake of both FCC licensing requirements and the public interest, your station should immediately require AFP to provide the factual documentation for its claims if you are going to continue airing this advertisement.”
The accuracy of claims made by a female cancer patient who appears in the ad were challenged by the Washington Post on February 20, which is when the Perkins Coie letter is dated. The letter includes a reference to the Washington Post article as part of a warning that television stations could run afoul of FCC regulations which prohibit “false and misleading advertising.”
This letter echoes the FCC’s recently announced plan to conduct news content studies to “identify and understand the critical information needs of the American public, with special emphasis on vulnerable-disadvantaged populations” in order to insure that the news being developed is in the best interest of the public.
This is not the first time intimidation has been used to influence the news. In 2008, in a story on supposed “truth squads,” News Channel 4 Missouri reported that prosecutors and sheriffs from across Missouri were joining Barack Obama truth squads, whose mission was to remind voters that Barack Obama is a Christian and to respond to any political ads that may violate Missouri ethics laws.
Previously, attorney Judith Corley of Perkins Coie’s Seattle office reportedly retrieved and couriered back to Washington two certified copies of Obama’s long-form Hawaii birth certificate. This was supposedly provided by Hawaii Department of Health Director Loretta Fuddy, who would later perish in the Pacific Ocean after a December 11, 2013 plane crash.
It remains unclear if Obama’s repeated mantra, “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan” constitutes false and misleading advertising under those same FCC regulations. If so, one may wonder, does that mean that every television station which broadcast Obama making Affordable Care Act promises which were later broken is at risk of FCC license revocation?