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Inside Move: Heavy hitters

Nets finds friends in high places

Nets scored a coup last week when top politicos sent a letter urging the Federal Communications Commission to scrap a rule that’s holding the Big Four back from owning more broadcast properties.

Some pretty weighty names signed the Sept. 19 missive, including Rep. W.J. “Billy” Tauzin (R-La.), chair of the House Commerce Committee, and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), ranking Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee.

Lawmakers wrote that they are somewhat sick of the argument that the national cap protects localism, and challenged the FCC to back up the claim if the agency intends to keep the cap. The ownership reg blocks a broadcaster from directly reaching more than 35% of the national audience.

“Moreover, automatically assuming the converse — that a local owner always serves the local community — is equally irresponsible,” the two-page letter says.

Separately, a federal appeals court is considering whether the broadcast cap passes judicial muster. The court is expected to rule later this year.

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