Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA) suggested on Saturday that despite not wanting to “get in the business of telling troops what they can and cannot watch,” he might be open to banning Fox News on military installations.
Swalwell joined MSNBC host Katie Phang on Saturday, and she fretted about the ongoing Dominion lawsuit and the “damage” she believed was being done by Fox News, asking whether Congress was ready to get involved.
"Nothing makes [our troops] feel more like home than their access to American television programming, and a popular channel is Fox News," says Democrat Eric Swalwell.
"We need to take a look at how [Fox News] is being broadcast to our troops." pic.twitter.com/tzJeTfyEoU
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) March 11, 2023
“Has there been any discussions in Congress about maybe congressional oversight, regulations, maybe the FCC getting involved? I know we all respect the First Amendment, Congressman, but should there be some type of gatekeeping that happens so that this doesn’t happen again?” Phang asked.
Swalwell referenced a recent push from political action committee VoteVets to ban Fox News on military installations, adding that he understood it could be a particularly heavy lift because the network is popular with American service members.
“FOX hosts’ election lies and disinformation splits the ranks, hurts unit cohesion, and weakens America’s national defense,” the PAC tweeted. “They must be removed from all TVs on military installations NOW.”
FOX hosts' election lies and disinformation splits the ranks, hurts unit cohesion, and weakens America's national defense. They must be removed from all TVs on military installations NOW.
Share if you agree! pic.twitter.com/1a6WiYB0hV
— VoteVets (@votevets) March 6, 2023
“Nothing makes them feel more like home than their access to American television programming,” he said
“I don’t want to get in the business of telling troops what they can and cannot watch,” he said. “But, if you have a news station that a court is going to rule is, in its evening hour, you know, perpetuating dis- and misinformation, I don’t know if I disagree with VoteVets, who was saying that we need to take a look at, you know, how this is being broadcast to our troops,” Swalwell continued.
“I don’t think we’re without complete recourse,” the California Congressman said, appearing to suggest that threats of Congressional oversight would be “an incentive for Fox News to clean up” programming that did not fall in line.
Democrats and a number of legacy media talking heads have spent much of the last week criticizing Fox News and popular host Tucker Carlson over his broadcast of previously unseen footage from the January 6th riot on Capitol Hill.