Congresswoman Anna Eshoo

Representing the 18th District of California

Eshoo, Doyle Lead Letter Demanding FCC Take Action on Russian Propaganda

February 13, 2020
Press Release
FCC Ignores Responsibility as Russia Prepares to Meddle in 2020 Elections

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Reps. Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18) and Mike Doyle (PA-18) led a letter criticizing Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai for failing to enforce the Commission’s rules to clearly identify Russian propaganda aired on U.S. radio stations.

 

“Americans are currently in the process of deciding who they will elect to lead our country, and it’s critical that they are not unknowingly influenced by foreign propaganda,” wrote the Members. “The FCC’s continued inaction, after receiving many Congressional letters from us about this critically important issue, is a stunning abdication of its responsibility to protect American airwaves.”

 

Eshoo and Doyle were joined by Reps. Jerry McNerney (CA-09), Jimmy Panetta (CA-20), David Cicilline (RI-01), Sharice Davids (KS-03), and Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC). To read the letter, click PDF iconHERE.

 

Russia has a history of interfering in U.S. elections beginning in 2012 when it pushed anti-U.S. messaging to undermine trust in democracy. Volume I of the Report on the Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election (the Mueller Report) concludes that Russia influenced the 2016 elections using propaganda. According to the Estonian Foreign Intelligence Service’s annual report released yesterday, Russia is very likely to interfere in Western elections in 2020.

 

Congresswoman Eshoo is a strong advocate of protecting America’s airwaves, having called on the FCC on six previous occasions to investigate Russian broadcasting in the American media market. She also reintroduced the Foreign Entities Reform Act which requires U.S. media outlets to disclose state-sponsored programming.

 

###