Equal Time Provision

Section 315 of the Communications Act of 1934 (and its amendments) sets forth “equal opportunity” (as opposed to “equal time”) rules of access to broadcast radio and television stations for U.S. political candidates. The origins of the equal opportunity provision appear in Section 18 of the Radio Act of 1927:

If any licensee shall permit any person who is a legally qualified candidate for any public office to use a broadcasting station, he [sic] shall afford equal opportunities to all other such candidates for that office in the use of such broadcasting station…: Provided, That such licensee shall have no power of censorship over the material broadcast under the provisions of this paragraph. No obligation is hereby imposed upon any licensee to allow the use of ...
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