Free Press President Josh Silver made the following statement:
"It is time to stop playing politics with our nation’s public media system. Calling for Congress to defund NPR is nothing more than political opportunism by public figures who have built a career on such shenanigans. Regardless of what you think about Juan Williams' dismissal, calling for the defunding of NPR is like asking for the death penalty in small claims court.
“Public media like NPR play a crucial role in America, providing original, in-depth journalism and educational programming. With commercial newspapers, radio and television stations cutting staff and cutting back on original reporting, the need for a robust public media system has never been greater.
“The United States already has one of the lowest levels of federal funding of public media in the developed world — at just $1.43 per capita. Yet surveys show the public considers NPR and PBS not just the most trusted news sources but the most valued public institutions we have besides the military. What Congress should be doing is figuring out how to raise more money to build a truly world-class public media system in America.”