The Court continued its practice of deferring to congressional factual findings in reviewing the constitutionality of the must-carry provisions of the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992 [Pub. L. 102–385
, see Tables for classification]. See Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. v. Federal Communications Commission, 512 U.S. 622 (1994)
(Turner I) and Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. v. Federal Communications Commission, 520 U.S. 180 (1997)
(Turner II). At issue in the Turner cases was Congress’ legislative finding that, absent mandatory carriage rules, the continued viability of local broadcast television would be ‘seriously jeopardized’. The Turner I Court recognized that as an institution, ‘Congress is far better equipped than the judiciary to “amass and evaluate the vast amounts of data” bearing upon an issue as complex and dynamic as that presented here’, 512 U.S. at 665–66. Although the Court recognized that ‘the deference afforded to legislative findings does “not foreclose our independent judgment of the facts bearing on an issue of constitutional law,” ’ its ‘obligation to exercise independent judgment when First Amendment rights are implicated is not a license to reweigh the evidence de novo, or to replace Congress’ factual predictions with our own. Rather, it is to assure that, in formulating its judgments, Congress has drawn reasonable inferences based on substantial evidence.’. Id. at 666.