C-SPAN (Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network) is a cable television network.
The costs to keep C-SPAN on the air are paid for by cable and satellite networks (thus the name).
Its main showings are live coverage of proceedings of the United States House of Representatives (broadcast on CSPAN, its original channel) and the United States Senate (broadcast on CSPAN2). When not in session it airs coverage of political events such as Presidential speeches and Congressional committee hearings.
In addition to the two channels mentioned above CSPAN operates a third network —CSPAN3—as well as a radio network and web resources.
On those times when it allows call-ins on a subject CSPAN operates three separate phone lines: one for Democrats, one for Republicans, and one for Independents.