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Newsmax Hires Squire Patton Boggs Lobbyists Amid Allegations of Conservative Censorship
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Conservative news channel Newsmax has hired lobbyists to push back against what it sees as censorship of conservative views. Newsmax is currently embroiled in a dispute with satellite television provider DirecTV, which dropped the network from its lineup in February over failed negotiations regarding increased licensing fees. Newsmax has hired former Republican Congressman Jack Kingston and Thomas Andrews, a former Trump White House and House Republican leadership staffer, as lobbyists on the issue of “conservative censorship,” according to federal disclosures from law firm Squire Patton Boggs, which employs both Kingston and Andrews as principals.

A spokesperson for Squire Patton Boggs declined to comment on the matter. Still, a DirecTV spokesperson stated that the company “remains interested in bringing Newsmax back — and wishes it had never left — as long as it doesn’t put an undue financial burden on our broad customer base.” The spokesperson said the ongoing dispute between the two companies was a matter of economics rather than politics or ideology.

Newsmax, through a spokesperson, has expressed disagreement with DirecTV’s “characterizations” of the network but said that it was pleased that the company was open to bringing Newsmax back on. Newsmax has also encouraged its supporters to contact DirecTV or their members of Congress about the dispute.

  
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Some Republican lawmakers have sent letters to DirecTV supporting Newsmax, claiming that the conservative outlet is being censored. However, DirecTV has maintained that negotiations with Newsmax are ongoing and that the dispute is a business matter.

The dispute between Newsmax and DirecTV is not the only one. In January 2022, DirecTV announced it would no longer offer the far-right One America News Network (OAN) when its contract expired. The company called the decision a “routine internal review.” OAN responded by suing AT&T and DirecTV in March 2022. The case is still ongoing.

Both OAN and Newsmax are also facing defamation lawsuits from Dominion Voting Systems Corp for allegedly amplifying false statements about fraud in the 2020 election. The companies are contesting the lawsuits.

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The controversy surrounding Newsmax and DirecTV highlights the ongoing debate over censorship and free speech in media. Conservatives have long accused tech companies and media outlets of censoring their views, while liberals argue that the issue is one of misinformation and hate speech. The dispute between Newsmax and DirecTV is just one example of the ongoing tension between these two sides. It remains to be seen how the dispute will be resolved, but the issue of censorship and free speech will continue to be contentious in the years to come.





 

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