Boyles, "Gunny" Bob to help raise funds for Tancredo presidential bid -- will Clear Channel let them remain on air discussing his campaign issues?

››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

A Rocky Mountain News article reported that conservative radio hosts Peter Boyles and "Gunny" Bob Newman will serve as emcees at a fundraiser for Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo's presidential exploratory committee. Will their stations' owner, Clear Channel, allow them to promote Tancredo's potential campaign by discussing him and his views on their 630 KHOW-AM and Newsradio 850 KOA shows?

The Rocky Mountain News reported February 8 on its website that "[c]onservative talkers [KHOW-630 AM's] Peter Boyles and [Newsradio 850 KOA's] Robert 'Gunny Bob' Newman will share the emcee duties at a Feb. 25 fundraiser for [Colorado Republican U.S. Rep. Tom] Tancredo's newly-formed presidential exploratory committee, Tancredo for a Secure America." The News reported that the event will give Tancredo's "White House ambitions an off-the-air boost."

Now that Boyles and Newman apparently are about to promote and help raise money for Tancredo's presidential "ambitions," will Clear Channel Communications, the parent company of KHOW and KOA, also allow them to give Tancredo an on-the-air "boost" and essentially promote the potential campaign by letting the pair use their shows to discuss the candidate, his cornerstone issue of immigration control, and his other conservative campaign themes?

Tancredo on January 16 announced the formation of his presidential exploratory committee. The following day, the News reported that, in media appearances announcing the move, Tancredo "sounded conservative themes that go beyond his trademark crusade against illegal immigration."

As the News reported on February 8, "Boyles said he agreed to appear at an event to 'help Tom,' but he did not know it would benefit the presidential committee until a reporter read him the invitation." The News also reported Boyles' comment that he has "never been shy about backing Tom's politics."

Similarly, the News noted that "Gunny Bob said he wants Tancredo to run -- and win." The article further quoted Newman as saying, "My message is, let's see what a maverick can do ... I'd feel very comfortable. Given who's in the race for Republicans, I'd like to see Tom Tancredo in there. I want to see him win."

As Colorado Media Matters has noted, on September 21, 2006, Tancredo -- shortly after making the same claim on The Peter Boyles Show -- dubiously claimed on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives that Denver is a so-called "sanctuary city" for illegal immigrants.

From the February 8 Rocky Mountain News article, "Talk hosts will emcee Tancredo fundraiser":

Rep. Tom Tancredo's talk radio buddies are about to give his White House ambitions an off-the-air boost.

Conservative talkers Peter Boyles and Robert "Gunny Bob" Newman will share the emcee duties at a Feb. 25 fundraiser for Tancredo's newly-formed presidential exploratory committee, Tancredo for a Secure America.

"He doesn't have a snowball's chance in hell, but what he can do is affect a platform of their (Republican) ticket on illegal immigration," Boyles said in an interview Thursday.

[...]

"We'd of course like to raise money," said [longtime Republican booster Mort] Marks. "What we really want to do on this day is have a huge turnout and have people discuss with Tom: should he go all the way?"

Boyles said he agreed to appear at an event to "help Tom," but he did not know it would benefit the presidential committee until a reporter read him the invitation. "I've never been shy about backing Tom's politics," Boyles said.

Gunny Bob said he wants Tancredo to run -- and win.

"My message is, let's see what a maverick can do," he said. "I'd feel very comfortable. Given who's in the race for Republicans, I'd like to see Tom Tancredo in there. I want to see him win."

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