Breaking: House Votes to Bar Federal Funding For National Public Radio

UPDATE: The House voted 228-192 to bar federal funding from National Public Radio 3:32 PM EDT.

If you require further evidence of the contempt for education among the paranoid stylists of American politics (also known as the Tea Party movement), one need only listen into the debate currently taking place on the floor of the House of Representatives on a bill that would bar federal funding for National Public Radio.

Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., just argued that NPR did not deserve federal funding because most of its listeners are college-educated. No, I'm really not kidding. Of course, what Republicans are really afraid of is the fact that NPR is also accessible to the non-college-educated voters it would rather keep in the dark.

Many have said -- most famously two NPR executives in a James O'Keefe undercover (and deceptively edited) video -- that without federal funding, NPR will survive. But its affiliates, especially in rural areas, could suffer terribly, and even go dark. That would grant total hegemony of the air waives to right-wing talk radio.

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi tweeted that defunding of NPR could result in the loss of 9,000 jobs.

In a procedural move, Rep. Betty Sutton, D-Ohio, just proposed an amendment that would preserve public funding for NPR's role in the Amber Alert system, which sounds an alarm when children are abducted.

You can watch the debate unfold on C-SPAN's Web site.


AlterNet / By Adele M. Stan

Posted at March 17, 2011, 8:49am

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