FCC Republican says Trump is "rightfully venting" anger at the press

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Blumenthal said the FCC, not Trump, has the authority to approve broadcaster licenses and may not base a decision on his dislike of content.

Ajit Pai, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, rejected President Trump's claim that the FCC could shut down a network that broadcasts "fake news".

"Network news has become so partisan, distorted and fake that licenses must be challenged and, if appropriate, revoked".

On Wednesday last week, Trump said on Twitter that an NBC news report about his nuclear ambitions was "pure fiction" and that NBC and other networks should have their licenses challenged.

"The Commission generally will not intervene in such cases because it would be inconsistent with the First Amendment to replace the journalistic judgment of licensees with our own", the 2008 guidelines read.

But O'Rielly also said that Trump is "rightfully venting" about the media.

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When contacted by Ars, O'Rielly's office confirmed that the quotes in TR Daily are accurate.

Despite Trump's ostensible attempt to make a case that the license of the national news organization for NBC should be revoked, the FCC would have to deal with each locally operated station on a case-by-case basis.

Tom Wheeler, who led the FCC under Democratic President Donald Trump, told CNN that Pai was "making himself complicit in the coercion that the president was engaging in".

Pai is facing increasing pressure to condemn Trump's tweets from last week suggesting that NBC and others should have their licenses revoked.

Most observers and analysts said Trump's threat to NBC News was empty.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal said on Monday that he will release a letter that calls on each member of the Federal Communications Commission to provide a personal commitment to uphold freedom of speech.

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