Group Runs Cable Spot in Advance of Supremes Arguments

Fix the Court, a group pushing for cameras in the Supreme Court, has taken out an ad on various cable nets this week in advance of a Wednesday oral argument in the High Court on the Affordable Care Act, as well as upcoming arguments on gay marriage and the death penalty.

The 30-second spot uses iconic TV images — Neil Armstrong's moon walk, President Reagan's "tear down this wall" speech — to suggest a Supreme Court argument helping determine the fate of key policies should join that group. “America’s biggest moments wouldn’t be the same without TV. But the biggest decisions still happen in the dark behind closed doors. It’s time for us to see the history made here in the light of day," says the ad.

The mid-five-figure spot is running in Washington on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and Comedy Central for a week. The idea is not to blanket the airwaves, but to use the ad as a way to get it into the conversation, choosing cable because it is a targeted buy.

"As the justices debate the future of health care this week and same-sex marriage and the death penalty next month, they shouldn’t be restricting access to the handful of people granted a physical seat in the courtroom," said Fix the Court executive director Gabe Roth in announcing the new spot. "Decisions at the Supreme Court profoundly impact Americans’ lives, and there’s no better time than now for the court to revise its outdated policies and finally let cameras – and the American public – into the courtroom.”

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.