Recently, the anti-Trump, left-wing group MeidasTouch requested that Fox News air its "GOP Betrayed America" ad. The ad cost $184,854 and included footage from the January 6 Capitol Hill riot.
The network said no and refused, as is its right to do. Sure enough, MeidasTouch went nuts, tweeting several times calling out Fox News. Their Twitter account is full of anti-GOP campaigns on a regular basis. The ad has served as a pinned tweet since June 6.
According to Seema Mehta with The Los Angeles Times:
MeidasTouch booked nearly $185,000 of air time to play the ad on Fox News between June 6 and 15, starting with Chris Wallace’s Sunday show and continuing for seven days on “Fox and Friends” as well as two spots on daytime programs and one more on Wallace’s show next weekend.
Mehta's article also includes statements from Ben Meiselas, who, along his brothers, Brett and Jordan, is a co-founder of MeidasTouch:
“We couldn’t have fathomed in our wildest imaginations that even a Fox News would reject an ad that simply condemns the insurrection, and condemns people who support the insurrection,” said Ben Meiselas, one of the co-founders of MeidasTouch, the liberal Political Action Committee that created the 60-second ad. “What Fox has really become is a fascist echo chamber gatekeeper for their base.”
Broadcast and cable networks have discretion in refusing to air ads by political campaigns and advocacy groups. A Fox News spokeswoman did not respond to a request for comment on Saturday.
Meiselas and his two brothers, Brett and Jordan, said they placed the ad buy as they have in the past, but were informed over the phone on Friday that the cable network would not air the ad and were not given a reason. Fox News has never before refused to air one of their ads without offering suggestions for edits, they said.
First of all, something tells me the Meiselas brothers didn't mean it when they said they "couldn't have fathomed in their wildest imaginations that Fox News" would do such a thing, especially when Ben Meiselas went on to rant about how "Fox has really become... a fascist echo chamber gatekeeper for their base."
Second, and most important of all, is that Fox News disputes Brett and Jordan Meiselas' claims. As Gabe Kaminsky reported for The Federalist:
While Meidas Touch claims Fox News has not previously declined to air one of its advertisements, a spokeswoman for Fox told The Federalist this is a false claim and that the network has turned down its offers in the past.
MeidasTouch used Kaminsky's article to call out the The Federalist, which MeidasTouch is fundraising off of, in addition to countless other tweets to garner sympathy, and, more importantly, cash.
We are putting this up on TV on other channels and expanding our buy. Please make an immediate contribution to support the expansion: https://t.co/VjhpJNotSh— MeidasTouch.com (@MeidasTouch) June 6, 2021
The ad has aired on other networks which have accepted the ad, including on Brian Williams' "The 11th Hour." MeidasTouch's Twitter account is also heavily promoting the ad.
The concept seems to be lost for some that it is perfectly within a network's rights to air, or not air, the ad.
A headline from HuffPost read that "Brian Williams Trolls Fox News By Showing Capitol Riot Ad It Rejected," while a headline from the Independent proclaimed that "Brian Williams mocks Fox News by showing advert the right-wing network rejected."
MeidasTouch has also targeted Jordan Tygh, who, as Townhall reported, is a veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard who worked for the California GOP as a field operative in Orange County. He was the face of a CAGOP ballot harvest-initiative, which received negative attention. Although he was not involved in the planning aspects, as the face of it, the negative attention was directed towards him.
Tygh is raising funds to help with his legal efforts.