Fox 32 Chicago has made the decision to air a Chicago Bears exhibition game instead of Governor Romney's speech at tonight's Republican National Convention. The station has also decided to air President Obama's speech in entirety during next week's Democratic National Convention.
The Chicago Republican Party urges Fox Chicago to reconsider this decision. It is fundamentally unfair to air one candidate's speech and not the other's. While it may have been a business decision, it feels like censorship.
The decision not to air Governor Romney's speech tonight has implications. It means that many viewers will not see the candidate's first major speech. Many viewers may never hear him speak. This will have an effect on the number of votes he receives in Illinois.
Of equal importance is the effect it will have on congressional races. Illinois has five of the top 25 congressional races in the country, three of them in the immediate Chicago area. Presidential candidates have coattails, and an artificially depressed Romney turnout in Illinois will have a real effect on these races.
We understand that Fox 32 would prefer to air an exhibition football game. But avid Bears fans could certainly manage to see the game if it were moved to later in the evening. We believe that airing the Republican National Convention tonight would be the responsible decision.
And in the event that the Romney speech is not aired tonight, we believe that airing the Obama speech next week would be unfair.