A prominent Georgetown Law professor has concluded that a popular country music radio station “likely” killed an interview with Pete Buttigieg because of the presidential hopeful's sexual orientation.

The openly gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana recorded an interview with Blair Garner, host of the Blair Garner Show, which never aired. The radio show is heard overnight on the Nash FM network.

Cumulus Media, which owns the show, said in a statement that the interview did not air because of the large number of candidates in the presidential race. It said that it had considered the effects of the FCC's Equal Time Rule in making its decision.

“Cumulus Nashville’s programming managers made the decision not to air Blair Garner’s pre-recorded interview with Mayor Pete Buttigieg because of the large number of political candidates currently in this race,” the company said. “The decision was made by local programming management based solely on concerns related to the application of the FCC’s Equal Time Rule. The effects of the FCC’s Equal Time Rule are widely understood and considered whenever these types of issues arise.”

Andrew Schwartzman of Georgetown’s Institute for Public Representation told Talking Points Memo that as a “bona fide news interview” the Buttigieg interview most likely falls within an exemption to the Equal Time Rule.

“This was almost certainly a bona fide news interview,” Schwartzman said. “If another candidate asked for equal opportunity, equal time, the station could say no.”

“In practice, here’s the bottom line – it is highly unlikely that any candidate that wished to could successfully obtain time under equal opportunity…just to request the time is a process that is complicated and probably not worth it. And anyway, this interview is almost certainly exempt.”

“This is much more likely to be about Cumulus not wanting to be seen as promoting a candidate who may not be particularly consonant with the proclivities of country station listeners since he is – how should we put this – gay,” he said.