The Hill just published an op-ed co-authored by my friend Michele Combs of the Christian Coalition of America and me.
While we don't see eye to eye on several issues, Michele and I have found common ground on others, and with that identified opportunities to advance policies that genuinely benefit real people.
One such policy is the Local Community Radio Act of 2009 -- which was introduced by Sens. John McCain and Maria Cantwell.
If passed this bill would free up unused radio spectrum for hundreds and possibly thousands of new local stations. Known as Low Power FM (LPFM), these stations operate at 100 watts or less and broadcast just a few miles into local communities. They’re typically run by colleges, churches, schools and nonprofits to provide local information and perspectives not available elsewhere on a dial dominated by commercial conglomerates and political blowhards.
From saving lives during Hurricane Katrina to broadcasting local church services to homebound community members, LPFM stations have more than demonstrated their importance to communities nationwide. Without them, so many of our small cities, towns and rural areas would not have a voice on the radio at all.
This bill has united traditional foes like Barack Obama, Ron Paul, Joe Wilson and Bernie Sanders. Despite this bipartisanship, it's been stopped cold by just one senator (apparently held under the sway of a powerful corporate media lobby) who's holding local radio hostage with a single and secret hold.
After ten years of trying we have a 11th-hour opportunity to lift this hold and get this bill passed. But people need to get on the horn and call their senators.