WASHINGTON, D.C. –Congressman Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a senior member and former chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee’s Communications, Technology and the Internet Subcommittee, made the following statement on the House floor today in opposition to H.R. 1176, the Republican legislation, To Prohibit Federal Funds for NPR and for Purchasing Radio Content.
“The Republican legislation attacking National Public Radio would drive ‘Car Talk’ off the road and would wipe ‘Lake Wobegon’ right off the map. It would close down ‘Marketplace’ and tell ‘Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me’ to take a hike. This misguided bill would snuff out stations from coast-to-coast, many in rural areas where the public radio station is the primary source of news and information.
“This bill was rushed to the Floor without a single hearing, bypassing the committee process. It is unwise and ill-conceived.”
STATEMENT OF REPRESENTATIVE EDWARD MARKEY
IN OPPOSITION TO H.R. 1076, TO PROHIBIT FEDERAL FUNDS FOR NPR AND FOR PURCHASING RADIO CONTENT
MARCH 17, 2011
This bill would drive “Car Talk” off the road.
It would wipe “Lake Wobegon” right off the map.
It would close down “Marketplace” and tell “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” to take a hike.
GOP used to stand for Grand Old Party. Now it stands for “Gut Our Programs”.
This bill prohibits public radio stations from using federal funds to buy these programs and others produced by National Public Radio or its competitors like WBUR.
As a result, this bill would silence public radio stations across the country, depriving listeners of the news and information they depend on.
Public radio stations can just raise the money from private donors, some say. Not likely.
Local public radio stations need signature NPR programs like “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered” to attract audiences.
By drawing listeners to local stations, these programs and others generate strong financial support from the local listening area.
Without these prominent NPR programs, local stations won’t be able to attract the audience and sufficient fundraising base to keep running.
Every month, more than 170 million Americans turn to their local public broadcasting stations for free, high-quality programs that focus on the issues most important to them.
This bill would pull the plug.
It would snuff out stations from coast-to-coast, many in rural areas where the public radio station is the primary source of news and information.
This makes no sense.
Public radio is widely supported by large majorities of Americans regardless of party affiliation.
It’s increasingly relied upon, while fewer Americans watch broadcast TV and read newspapers.
This bill was rushed to the Floor without a single hearing, completely bypassing the committee process. It’s unwise and ill-conceived.
I urge a NO vote.