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Romney’s Threats to Public Media Ignore Popular Will

WASHINGTON - In an interview published Wednesday in Fortune, presidential candidate Mitt Romney said that he would eliminate funding for public broadcasting if elected.

“There are programs I would eliminate, Obamacare being one of them, but also various subsidy programs — the Amtrak subsidy, the PBS subsidy, the subsidy for the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities,” Romney said. “Some of these things, like those endowment efforts and PBS I very much appreciate and like what they do in many cases, but I just think they have to stand on their own rather than receiving money borrowed from other countries, as our government does on their behalf."

Free Press Action Fund President and CEO Craig Aaron made the following statement:

"It's disappointing that Mitt Romney continues to use his public platform to disparage public funding for public media. The public consistently ranks support for public media as an excellent use of our tax dollars, second only to national defense. Cutting funding for public media wouldn't allow these vital outlets to stand on their own. It would cut them off at the knees. Hundreds of communities would lose public media stations that provide local news, children's programming and community voices found nowhere else. If Governor Romney truly wants to represent the vast majority of Americans, he should propose long-term ways to build a world-class public media system, not issue vapid campaign threats."

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