Since before the firing of National Public Radio commentator Juan Williams, The Heritage Foundation has been keeping the pressure on Congress to cut NPR’s taxpayer funding.
Photo: Flickr/Mr. T in DC
“National Public Radio’s dismissal of Juan Williams is a powerful indictment of NPR’s practices and corporate culture,” Heritage vice President Mike Gonzalez wrote last fall. “Small wonder voices are once again calling for the federal government to defund NPR—which gets 16% of its budget from taxpayers. The Heritage Foundation has long called for such defunding.”
Heritage is keeping up the pressure. Gonzalez, a former journalist, appeared last week on a local NPR affiliate to argue with Patrick Butler, CEO of the Association of Public Television Stations, about the need to end federal subsidies.
On Tuesday, infamous filmmaker James O’Keefe released a new video in which NPR executive Ron Schiller called members of the tea party racist and xenophobic. A leading Jewish group called other remarks in the video anti-Semitic and have joined the call to withdraw funding.
But on Monday—just hours before the video was released—NPR’s then-chief executive Vivian Schiller (no relation to Ron Schiller) said the taxpayer-funded news organization exhibited no bias against conservatives. She even dared conservatives to show her the proof. O’Keefe’s video prompted her resignation.
“The timing was fortuitous — and it exposed Schiller as an apologist for the liberal mainstream media, of which NPR is a key player,” Heritage’s Rob Bluey said of Vivian Schiller’s remarks. “If this is the type of talk Schiller permitted at the highest levels of NPR, is there really any question about the organization’s hostility to conservatives?”
Do you believe any media should have federal taxpayer funding?