Harry Reid: ‘I Love NPR’

August 3, 2011 - 10:36 AM

harry reid

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., leaves the office of Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on Capitol Hill on Sunday, July 31, 2011.(AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

(CNSNews.com) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), interviewed Tuesday on National Public Radio, began with an endorsement of the liberal media outlet:

“I love NPR,” Reid told host Michele Norris right after she introduced him. Reid went on the show to discuss the debt-ceiling deal that Obama signed on Tuesday.

The Republican-led House in March passed a bill to block all federal funding for NPR and its parent company, but the move was symbolic, since the bill cannot get through the Democrat-led Senate. Not a single House Democrat voted for the bill, and both Reid and the White House expressed their opposition at the time.

Conservatives question why taxpayer money should be used to partially fund a broadcast outlet that also is funded by liberal-leaning groups – and that displays a liberal bias in its reporting.

“Our nation is on the edge of bankruptcy and Congress must make some tough choices to rein in spending, but ending taxpayer subsidies of public broadcasting should be an easy decision,” said Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), who sponsored the Senate bill to defund NPR.

As CNSNews.com previously reported, President Obama’s proposed fiscal year 2012 budget includes $451 million for public broadcasting – slightly below the $460 million he requested in fiscal year 2011.

Since all appropriations bills originate in the House, taxpayer funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting – of which NPR is a part – will run out at the end of September, unless House Republicans agree to fund CPB in their fiscal 2012 appropriations. (In Fiscal Year 2010, NPR received $5 million in federal funding through CPB, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Departments of Education and Commerce.)

During Tuesday’s NPR interview, Reid was asked to give a one-sentence assessment of the debt-limit deal: He called it a “compromise,” noting that “no one got what they wanted.”

Reid said it’s the nature of compromise to end up with all parties dissatisfied, “and that's what we had here. No one was happy with it,” Reid said. “But it was the right thing for the American people.”

Conservatives complain the debt deal does not cut spending, shrink government, or require a balanced budget.

According to Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), the deal will add at least $7 trillion to the U.S. debt over the next 10 years. Although the deal purports to "cut" $2.1 trillion, the "cut" is from a baseline that adds $10 trillion to the debt:

“This deal, even if all targets are met and the Super Committee wields its mandate -- results in a BEST case scenario of still adding more than $7 trillion more in debt over the next 10 years. That is sickening,” Paul wrote in an open letter posted on his Web site.