‘Nobody’s upset about it. It’s Republican territory…’
(Tiffini Theisen, Orlando Sentinel) Days after President Donald Trump rallied his base in Florida’s Panhandle, vowing hundreds of millions of dollars in aid for the hurricane-devastated region, three local radio stations said they would air Trump speeches daily until the 2020 election.
The stations will broadcast two-minute snippets of Trump speeches every hour of every day — perhaps sometimes twice an hour — until the end of the presidential race, owner Samuel Rogatinsky said.
“We ran it by a bunch of listeners and people in the area, and nobody’s upset about it. It’s Republican territory,” Rogatinsky said Monday. “Nobody’s offended by it. It’s not an issue.”
He said Panhandle residents who have felt forgotten in the seven months since the Category 5 storm devastated the region were heartened by Trump’s speech at his rally Wednesday in Panama City Beach.
“No games, no gimmicks, no delays,” Trump vowed of the funding. “We’re just doing it.”
Rogatinsky’s newly formed company, Gulf Coast Media, recently purchased Classic Rock WRBA-FM, Country WKNK-FM and Adult Hits WASJ-FM, whose signals cover Bay County.
Hurricane Michael damaged the stations’ facilities so badly last fall that they went off the air for several months.
“Gulf Coast Media Inc. senior management acknowledged that broadcasting the president’s speeches may not be consistent with conventional commercial FM radio, but we have taken this approach to show the community’s sincere appreciation for President Donald Trump’s work in Panama City and Bay County,” the company said in a news release.
Rogatinsky, a Fort Lauderdale-based attorney, bought the three radio stations from Powell Broadcasting Company late last year.
Rogatinsky told MSN the stations will offer similar airtime to other candidates if requested, to comply with the Federal Communications Commission’s equal time guidelines.
“Really, we just want to have inspirational type things because the community is so down,” he told the Orlando Sentinel on Monday. “Nobody else is really promising or doing anything. They want to hear what he has to say.”
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