Popular conservative Canadian radio host Andrew Lawton has been forced to decline an invitation to be the keynote speaker at a Canadian March for Life event after the conglomerate that owns his London, Ontario station said his appearance would be “too divisive and polarizing” and not “on brand for the station”.
Lifesite News received an email from Lawton in which the blatantly conservative host explained how he was coerced into declining the offer to speak at the March for Life’s Rose Dinner. EDIT: For clarification, LN did not receive an email directly from Lawton, rather they obtained an email regarding Lawton.
Lawton turned down the offer because his employer, Global Radio 980 CFPL, “has decided it would be ‘too divisive and polarizing’ for me to speak at a pro-life event, and not ‘on brand for the station’,” he wrote in the email obtained by LifeSiteNews.
Corus Entertainment acquired CFPL and other stations when it bought out Canada’s Global Television Network.
What seems most confusing about the situation is that Lawton is by no means a “closet conservative”. He has become a leading voice for conservative politics in Canada and his show – Corus Entertainment’s show – is unabashedly conservative. It is what listeners tune in to hear.
Redstate contacted Rishma Govani, senior manager for Global News and Corus radio communications, for comment but she had not yet responded at the time of publication. However, Govani did send a response to Lifesite News after their original report posted.
As an organization that strives to reflect diverse voices and opinions, we discourage our employees from speaking at political events or conferences. Our talk show hosts may comment and report on divisive issues but it does not fall under the brand of Global News Radio to takes a side on these issues.
A source inside Lawton’s camp says with the corporate merger the stations have been undergoing a major – and questionable – rebranding.
Global had/has NO experience with commentary/opinion driven media. They’re trying to impose news reporter rules on talk radio hosts.
The number one rule of any media entity is to increase exposure and expand audience, as those are the things that lead to increased advertising revenue. Lawton’s invitation to Canada’s premier pro-life event seems primed to do just that for the media giant. Also, Lawton is a hugely popular conservative host. What better or more fitting place for a conservative host to appear than a pro-life event?
Leaving aside the sad idea that supporting the rights of unborn children is “political”, Global seems to misunderstand their own mandate to “reflect diverse voices and opinions.” One wonders if Lawton’s politics were on the” other side of the fence” if he would have been forced to turn down a similar opportunity with a different message.
With news today of Canada abstaining from standing with the United States against the UN’s ridiculous anti-Israel vote, it seems that our fair neighbors to the north have strayed very far from the Canada that helped win WWII.