Former CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite today joined with the Alliance for Better Campaigns to announce plans to regularly compare the time individual TV stations spend covering issues in political campaigns against the number of political ads they receive. Mr. Cronkite called the group's action "a move to take American democracy off the auction block." "We will have a magnifying glass on each station in the country," he said, warning the group would challenge license renewals if necessary if stations fail to fulfill their public service requirement. The group said it wants stations to devote 5 minutes a day in the last month of an election or primary campaign to issue coverage and would be disclosing how the stations are doing.
Copyright December 1999, Crain Communications Inc.