Ralph Reed Reported No Longer Working For Channel One News

August 15, 2001

Ralph Reed, Channel One Bad Guy


It never made any sense.  Why would former Christian Coalition leader Ralph Reed work with a company like Channel One? The simple answer: a lot of money. But Channel One never got their money’s worth from the hapless Reed. Obligation has learned that Mr. Reed is saying he no longer does work for the controversial Channel One. Reed worked for Channel One from at least 1999 to this year. During his years as a paid consultant, he tried to get other conservatives to say positive things about the company.   He also tried to derail a U. S. Senate hearing on Channel One in 1999.

He failed in that effort and in his efforts to get conservatives to support the idea of classroom commercials. His biggest failure came when the Southern Baptist Convention, meeting in Reed’s home city of Atlanta, passed a stinging resolution condemning Channel One and urging schools to remove it from their classrooms. Reed was apparently unaware of the resolution until it was in the USAToday newspaper and other papers. His Channel One handlers must not have been happy with Reed’s inattentiveness to their client’s concerns.

The next year, Reed attempted to undo the resolution with the Resolution Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention but he was rebuffed.

Reed did convince Dr. Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission to “praise” Channel One for Channel One’s decision to only advertise PG13 movies, often violent and sexually charged, to children 13 and older. That bizarre comment by a Southern Baptist official was not shared by any other Baptist official and appeared to be merely a favor from Land to his Reed.

Ralph Reed got in trouble by suggesting that the well-respected conservative Joe S. McIlhaney, Jr of the Medical Institute in Austin, Texas, was a supporter of Channel One.  Obligation paid a visit to the Medical Institute this summer and was assured that neither Dr. McIlhaney nor the Institute was ever a supporter of Channel One.

Reed and his firm Century Strategies showed a remarkable lack of competence in representing Channel One. An Alabama political operative, Lisa Myers, told me that she was offering conservatives in Alabama money to write pro-Channel One opinion articles for the big state newspapers. She said that Ralph Reed was the source of the money. As far as we could tell, nobody took the money. Reed’s “flash the cash” mentality was confusing to many that remember when he was with the Christian Coalition

“I have tried for three years to see Reed to show him what Channel One was doing to kids and he steadfastly refused to give me even five minutes,” said Jim Metrock of Obligation. “Reed didn’t want to know what children were being subjected to. What he wanted to see was the big check Channel One routinely sent him for his ‘expertise’. During the three years that Reed worked for Channel One, the in-school advertising got more sexualized and the movies that were advertised pushed the limits of decency. The public will one day hold Mr. Reed accountable for what he did.”

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