Chris Riotta, writing at Mic:
In the case of the RNC, as Billboard reported, the GOP had reportedly acquired a blanket license from the Broadcast Music Inc., a performing rights organization that collects licensing fees for artists to later distribute as royalties. This allows the Republican party to play virtually any work within the organization’s catalog — Queen included. Once a song is part of the BMI, the permissions are handled by that organization, not the artist. And because the BMI must adhere to anti-trust legislation, as Vox reports, the organization cannot discriminate as to who can or can’t use the song, or respect an artist’s requests to do so.