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WASHINGTON -- The Senate voted to ban the reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine, a long-defunct broadcasting regulation that was taken off the books in 1987, by adopting two amendments to the D.C. House Voting Rights Act today.

The amendment sponsored by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) would not only ban the Fairness Doctrine, but it would also prohibit the Federal Communications Commission from encouraging broadcasters to air local news and information, children's programming and public safety alerts. The amendment offered by Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) refocuses the DeMint amendment on the narrow issue of the Fairness Doctrine ban and reaffirms existing law that directs the FCC to promote diversity of media ownership.

Josh Silver, executive director of Free Press, issued the following statement:

"We applaud Senator Durbin for rejecting the Fairness Doctrine hysterics and reaffirming that all Americans benefit when there is diverse media ownership."

Commenting on the action, NAB Executive Vice President of Media Relations Dennis Wharton issued the following statement:

"NAB applauds today's Senate vote in opposition to the inaptly-named Fairness Doctrine. Diversity of opinion has never been greater than in today's media landscape. We salute President Obama and a bipartisan majority of the Senate for opposing the return of a rule that clearly violated the fundamental free speech rights under which this country was founded."

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