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Jim DeMint Introduces Bill to Defund NPR, PBS After Juan Williams Firing

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Sen. Jim DeMint, the conservative and increasingly powerful Republican senator from South Carolina, introduced a bill Friday to strip federal funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) in the wake of National Public Radio's decision to fire Juan Williams for comments about Muslims that he made on Fox News earlier this week.

During a panel about Muslims and terrorism on "The O'Reilly Factor," Williams said he sometimes is afraid boarding an airplane if he sees a person in "Muslim garb." He went on to say that stereotyping all Muslims is wrong.

After an NPR vice president told Williams he would be fired if he did not stop appearing on Fox News, Williams was terminated. He later defended his remarks as truthful and said that NPR is hostage to narrow thinking.

"This is evidence of one-party rule and one-sided thinking at NPR that leads to enforced ideology, speech and writing," Williams wrote on FoxNews.com. "It leads to people, especially journalists, being sent to the gulag for raising the wrong questions and displaying independence of thought."

Jim DeMintNPR does not receive direct federal funding for its operations, but it does benefit from allocations for programming from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the quasi-governmental agency that receives a federal appropriation from Congress -- $430 million in 2010. In addition to direct outlays for programming, the CPB also allocates funds to public radio and television stations, which then send significant programming dues to NPR and the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

O'Reilly announced that DeMint will introduce the legislation Friday.

In addition to attacking NPR's funding source, DeMint has been on an earmark tear recently and will force a vote during the lame duck session of Congress to ban all earmarks for the next year.

"I believe this will pass, and Republicans will be unified against the wasteful and corrupt earmark system," he told the Washington Times last month.
Filed Under: The Capitolist

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27 Comments

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tplapper

Maybe DeMint should get off the government dole himself and create some jobs in the private sector.

October 22 2010 at 4:30 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
Yvonne

Thanks for providing my laugh for today....... the irony here is priceless..... Fox News saying NPR is a one-pary one-sided network....... who are they kidding?

October 22 2010 at 4:19 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Yvonne's comment
chrissf4529

Yes Fox said that. And, the fact NPR fired Juan Willaims for presenting the "liberal" side of the equation on Fox, show two things. NPR is strictly one sided (theirs) and FOX will at least let the opposing view on the respective channel. So, as for who are they kidding? NO-one.

November 08 2010 at 5:30 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
andrc657

Republican Senator Jim DeMint should spend more time focused on the problems of his state of South Carolina which ranks as one of the poorest.

October 22 2010 at 3:14 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
John Vilvens

Federal funding needs to stop for public radio and tv. How many radio station are there now. There are hundrerd of tv channels. What ever you want to see it there all the time. It is time to look at a lot of public spending the government need to cut everything it can to get back to a balance budget.

October 22 2010 at 2:35 PM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to John Vilvens's comment
falkowskic

obviously, you have never watched public TV or are amused by the mindless blather on commercial television. It is sad to say, but one needs a certain amount of intellect to understand and enjoy the superior programming on these stations. I could live without commercial television, but contribute regularly to public TV for the exceptional programming that I cannot live without. Sorry, no insipid comedies or wrestling, so I understand why some would eschew it.

October 22 2010 at 3:24 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
ettu

The ONLY issue NPR had with Juan Williams is that he was a frequent contributor on the FOX NEWS programs. Juan leans left, I lean right, but I have always enjoyed listening to what Juan brought to the debates. Certainly, NPR is left leaning, so it could not be what Juan had to say, it can only be the venue that they found disturbing.

October 22 2010 at 2:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Steve

Demint is trying to grab the headlines. Does he know the facts behind the Williams firing or does he even care if he can get a headline from ignorantly jumping into the fray. I do not like Jim Demint. I believe that he represents the worst in us.

October 22 2010 at 1:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
farstar99

Public broadcasting has become nothing but another left-wing propaganda outlet. They brought it on themselves.

October 22 2010 at 12:57 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to farstar99's comment
falkowskic

Wow, I wonder if Celtic Thunder, Andrea Boccelli, and the cast of Rosemary and Thyme know that they are left-wing. They aren't even Americans.

October 22 2010 at 3:26 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
Tom

You, farstar, are evidently among the unlearned few who feel that anybody who doesn't spew the rhetoric of the far-out right wing-nut neocons is automatically left-wing propaganda. Most find public broadcasting (both radio and TV) to be quite centrist.

October 22 2010 at 3:41 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
flkewlkid00

this will be demints "waterloo"

October 22 2010 at 12:49 PM Report abuse -6 rate up rate down Reply
tplapper

Jim Demint...another tough talking draft dodger speaks out.

October 22 2010 at 11:59 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
wilsongunn

How pathetic is this. DeMint is pissed because some "liberal" analyst from NPR got fired for repeatedly violating his contract with NPR. This was not the first time Jaun has done this. NPR has reprimanded him many times in the past and this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Now DeMint wants to pull funding for PBS! Is he serious? It looks like he just can't stand Sesame Street or Nature. There just liberal shows anyway. We don't need none of that learning stuff. Just keep the people stupid and we can get away with anything we want. Want a shame. I guess for DeMint this is more important than actually putting forth some ideas that will help this country instead of just saying NO! And yes, putting an end to earmarks would count as a good thing for this country. But at this point it’s like trying to stop the stampede after someone has yelled fire! Where was this so called worry about the deficit during G.W.’s years. Oh, I forgot they only care now because there is a Dem in office and they want him to look bad so they can convince people that they should vote to put them back in power for them and their favorite corporations to rape us again and again. What a guy…..

October 22 2010 at 11:42 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to wilsongunn's comment
Tracy

GWB's deficit spending was peanuts compared to Obama's, and if you were so outraged during Bush's years why the support for the current president's spending? Seems hypocritical. Just sayin...

October 22 2010 at 12:49 PM Report abuse +9 rate up rate down Reply

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