the same argument is taking place here in Canada. In fact our cable tv bill has just gone up 1.5% due a levy that now has to be paid that will funnel money to the free to air broadcasters to help them keep "local content".
And frankly I think it's a load of shit.
The only reason why people can see some of the FTA stations is because they are re-transmitted over cabled and satellite tv. Where I live, we get the local tv station and Global from Toronto (watchable if I get the antenna right).
So we watch them over from our cable provider so we still see their ads , they still get their ad revenue (where as with out the cable we wouldn't see them full stop).
Plus here in Canada they get government assistance.