Region’s lawmakers, including Republicans, back public radio funding

All four representatives in the region voted to oppose HR 1076, a bill to prohibit stations from using federal funds to purchase programs from NPR or any other source: Chris Gibson NY-20, Bill Owens NY-23, Richard Hanna NY-24, and Peter Welch VT-1.

Gibson and Hanna were two of only seven Republicans in the nation to cross the aisle and oppose the measure.  Here’s the full statement released by Rep. Gibson’s office a short time ago:

Today I voted against eliminating funding for NPR because I know that our local affiliates  - like WAMC and North Country Public Radio – provide a valuable service to my constituents, particularly in our rural communities.

This was a vote I weighed carefully as I strongly believe that federal spending needs to be returned to the pre-TARP, pre-stimulus levels of FY 2008, and had this vote been to reduce federal funding to that level instead of eliminating it outright, I would have voted ‘yes.’

Looking forward, without question the most significant moment this year in terms of deficit reduction and restoring fiscal responsibility will be the unveiling of our Budget later this Spring.

We are working through the details of that now and I’m confident that it will appropriately address the severity of the situation and put our country back on track to fiscal responsibility, balanced budgets, and it will set the conditions for significant job creation and economic growth.

The measure still passed on a 228-192 vote, with all Democrats voting nay.  It faces stiff opposition in the Senate and from the White House.

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21 Responses to “Region’s lawmakers, including Republicans, back public radio funding”

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  1. oa says:

    Latest from the guy who will end up getting NPR defunded and NCPR off the air:
    http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/03/latest_james_okeefe_npr_tape_a_dud.php?ref=fpblg

    O’Keefe isn’t too bright, but he’s a conservative hero.
    All hail Dark Lord Soros!

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  2. Pete Klein says:

    Pleased to hear about Gibson and Hannah, plus Owens and Welch.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  3. Jake says:

    I didn’t vote for Gibson, but I’ll admit it’s good to see that he’s showing independence from his party, in this instance.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  4. Brian says:

    Kudos to Mr. Gibson for, in this case, having the nuance to be a fiscal conservative without being a raving, punitive ideologue. There is no serious news on the radio (or television) without public broadcasting. Without it, we’d be informed about little more than Charlie Sheen and Justin Bieber.

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  5. MrSandwich says:

    Political cover for representatives of a democratic state. Nothing more.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  6. Ellen Rocco says:

    On behalf of North Country Public Radio, I want to thank all of the Congressmen who represent districts within our coverage area. You are continuing a bi-partisan tradition of support for public broadcasting in rural communities across the country. Our job is connect people to each other–in places where staying connected to the region and the world can be a challenge. Thank you, Congressmen, for understanding our work and for being in our corner. Thanks, also, to the listeners and ncpr.org users who reached out to our Representatives. Now, it’s up to the Senate.

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  7. Fred Goss says:

    With the NYTimes announcing it’s coming Paywall, NCPR becomes still more important as a local source for news…

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  8. oa says:

    Rep. Anthony Wiener, a Plattsburgh State grad, applauds the GOP for figuring out who the real enemy is–the Car Talk guys:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dy7jcvsLrHg

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  9. If Clapton is God, Warren Haynes is Jesus says:

    Wiener was on Bill Maher’s HBO show sevearl weeks ago. Bright guy. Keep an eye on him as his star may rise significantly in the Democratic party. Dare I say presidential material?

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  10. Bret4207 says:

    Sorry Clap, that guys a moron.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 5

  11. If Clapton is God, Warren Haynes is Jesus says:

    I disagree…..Extremely sharp guy and very well spoken. And you heard it here first, he’ll be New York’s next Senator after “Wall Street’s best friend” Chuck Schumer retires. And I agree with his sarcasm ridden diatribe turn at the podium. We’re cutting NPR when we have a 1.5 trillion dollar deficit next year. Republican brilliance at its best….

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  12. oa says:

    Wiener wants to be mayor of NYC if Bloomberg ever abdicates.

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  13. Paul says:

    I hope that public funding is not cut in the end.

    With that said I think it improper to lobby for it here with comments like Ellen’s. This source may be only partially publicly funded but to use this as a lobbying platform seems wrong to me.

    Sure you may never have crossed the line and asked the senate to support it but Ellen’s comment above clearly indicates support for opposition to the legislation.

    I just see no place for that here.

    Hot debate. Like/Dislike Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  14. oa says:

    Get up from your fainting couch, Paul. There’s an advocacy ad on the site. They have every right to lobby for their jobs. If it’s okay for lying James O’Keefe to smear NPR, it’s fine for NPR to defend itself.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  15. Bret4207 says:

    I have no issue with Ellen calling for funding and no problem with O’Keefe showing the true colors of liberals. It’s all part of the show folks.

    Clap- Wiener is just another nasty version of Elliot Spitzer, Sheldon Silver, etc. Enough of that type of person.

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  16. tootightmike says:

    Paul, Ellen’s job is to manage OUR public radio station. She wouldn’t be doing a very good job if she didn’t work to protect that service from all of it’s adversaries, from ice storms to schizophrenic government, It’s also her job to stand up and speak to us, and in this case, for us. Thank you Ellen.

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  17. Brian says:

    Paul: Ellen’s job is to advocate on behalf of the well-being of the station. And in any case, she’s not lobbying since she’s commenting on a vote that’s already taken place. It’s also worth noting that every appeal that I’ve seen on NCPR’s site has encouraged people to express their opinion on CPB funding to their Congresspeople, explicitly NOT telling people to what opinion they should convey.

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  18. Pete Klein says:

    I do hope if funding is taken away, PBS and NPR have the guts to be more outspoken and stop kissing up to those who hate them.

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  19. oa says:

    Be careful if you have “no problem with O’Keefe.”
    You could get thrown out of Beckistan:
    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/does-raw-video-of-npr-expose-reveal-questionable-editing-tactics/

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  20. Bret4207 says:

    Whats the diff OA? If O’Keefe isn’t entirely accurate and cuts and pastes and edits is that any different than when the other side does it? Not in my book, it’s all politics and all pretty seedy.

    Kind of grates on you that Beck is actually fair and open minded, eh?

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  21. Paul says:

    “It’s also worth noting that every appeal that I’ve seen on NCPR’s site has encouraged people to express their opinion on CPB funding to their Congresspeople, explicitly NOT telling people to what opinion they should convey.”

    Like I said they have not crossed the line. It is just a slippery slop, I prefer that Ellen stay away from the edge.

    When you jump out a praise those in the house that have given you the vote you want before senate has weighed in that could influence the vote to come. It at least lets those that will vote in favor know what to expect. It also tells those that are thinking about not supporting NPR what they can expect. If you are counting on votes from NCPR listeners you may want to heed the lesson learned from these comments.

    “They have every right to lobby for their jobs.”

    oa, I am glad that you also see it as lobbying.

    Just my opinion. obviously most people here disagree with us.

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