What: All Issues : Government Checks on Corporate Power : Broadcast Media : (H.R. 1076) Legislation eliminating all federal funding for National Public Radio – On bringing to a final vote the resolution setting a time limit for debate and prohibiting amendments to the bill (2011 house Roll Call 189)
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(H.R. 1076) Legislation eliminating all federal funding for National Public Radio – On bringing to a final vote the resolution setting a time limit for debate and prohibiting amendments to the bill
house Roll Call 189     Mar 17, 2011
Progressive Position:
Nay
Progressive Result:
Loss

This was a procedural vote on a resolution setting a time limit for debate and prohibiting amendments to legislation eliminating all federal funding for National Public Radio (NPR). If passed, this particular procedural motion--known as the “previous question"--effectively ends debate and brings the pending legislation to an immediate vote. Republicans had long viewed NPR--which received federal funding through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting—as harboring a liberal bias. After Republicans regained control of the House of Representatives following the 2010 midterm elections, they drafted legislation to cut off all federal funds for the organization.

Rep. Richard Nugent (R-FL) urged support for the resolution and the underlying bill: “Under this bill, NPR will continue to provide its programming. They just can't use taxpayer dollars to subsidize it….What this bill does do is start weaning NPR off of federal dollars. Local radio stations are still allowed to pay membership dues, and they can still buy NPR programs. They just can't use your and my hard-earned tax dollars to pay for them….The federal government's addiction to spending has driven us to our current $14 trillion debt. We need to refocus on what our core mission is. We should not be using tax dollars that American citizens worked hard to earn for something that could be paid for privately.”

Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) opposed the resolution and the underlying bill: “NPR doesn't try to blur the line between opinion, fact, and political agenda. Instead, it takes the time and spends the money to do in-depth reporting across the country and around the globe and to go where no other news organization will go….We didn't become a global leader by bloviating on 24-hour cable news, and we aren't solving the fundamental issues that face our nation by passing this politically driven legislation to appease the far right. Our nation was built and will be rebuilt by the quiet efforts of millions of Americans across the country who will never make it on cable news and who will never appear on national television. It is these very Americans whom NPR dedicates its resources to finding, to covering, and to sharing the world with. Their stories aren't simple, and their efforts don't sell advertising space, but their stories matter. NPR's work to find the stories that matter is the in-depth intelligent reporting that I fight for today….We simply must stop this nonsense. It makes us look ridiculous in the eyes of the world.”

The House agreed to the previous question motion by a vote of 223-179. All 232 Republicans and 1 Democrat voted “yea.” 179 Democrats voted “nay.” As a result, the House proceeded to a final vote on a resolution setting a time limit for debate and prohibiting amendments to legislation eliminating all federal funding for National Public Radio.

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