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Posted: 5/14/2003 1:49:56 AM EDT
[url]http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/local/articles/0514cox-ads14.html[/url] Cox relents, will air ad against Bush tax cut Jon Kamman The Arizona Republic May. 14, 2003 12:00 AM Cox Communications has reversed itself and will air a television ad opposing the Bush administration's push for tax cuts. The nation's fourth-largest cable TV system had rejected the commercial in Phoenix and Las Vegas, although 20 other markets across the nation are playing it this week. Cox relented in both cities on Tuesday, the ad's producer said. In Phoenix, Cox spokeswoman Andrea Katsenes said the company turned down the ad after judging its script "in poor taste," but reversed the decision upon viewing a tape. The ad agency differed with that sequence of events and said it was told only that the ad was "too controversial." At the Santa Monica, Calif.-based Zimmerman & Markman agency, Lanicia Shaw said Monday that the script had been accepted in most markets last week, but Phoenix, Las Vegas and Tampa rejected it after viewing it. The ad is a dramatization of a real fund-raising event last month in Eugene, Ore. About 50 parents sold their blood plasma to help pay the salary of an elementary school math teacher who faced being laid off because of budget cuts. The ad shows two adults giving blood and others waiting. "You can always count on Americans in a crisis, but this blood is not for troops in Iraq," the narrator says. "George Bush's tax cuts for the rich have meant less money for education, and now he wants to cut $9 billion more," the spot says. It closes with a slogan accusing Bush of "Putting Rich People First." Katsenes said she did not know what Cox executives found offensive in the script, but noted that it referred to two adults lying on gurneys, giving blood. She would not speculate on why that scene might be in poor taste. An online political-activist group, MoveOn.org, is sponsoring the ad, paying $104,000 in selected markets to muster opposition to federal tax cuts at a time of deficit spending. Groups backing MoveOn denounced Cox's refusal to air the ads as an abridgement of free speech. Katsenes said, "Cox has a long history of airing ads from various political parties and all sides of debated issues" but has the right to reject offensive material. MoveOn, with the support of numerous public-interest groups and the Democratic Party, is aiming to paralyze communications today at the U.S. Capitol with a barrage of phone calls and e-mails to the Senate, where the fate of the tax cuts now rests. President Bush originally proposed $726 billion in cuts over a decade; the House pared the amount to $550 billion, and the Senate's proposal, still in danger of being voted down, is for $350 billion.
Link Posted: 5/14/2003 7:34:20 AM EDT
[i]Groups backing MoveOn denounced Cox's refusal to air the ads as an abridgement of free speech.[/i] Um, how's that? Did Congress pass a law that says that Cox isn't allowed to run the ad?
[i]Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.[/i]
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