October 21st, 2010
09:40 AM ET
4 years ago

Huckabee calls on Congress to cut NPR funding

(CNN) – In the wake of NPR's firing of contributor Juan Williams over comments about Muslims, Mike Huckabee is calling on the next Congress to cut the radio network's funding when it convenes next year.

"NPR has discredited itself as a forum for free speech and a protection of the First Amendment rights of all and has solidified itself as the purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left," Huckabee said in a statement provided to CNN.

Williams told Fox News host Bill O'Reilly on Monday that he gets "worried" and "nervous" on flights when he sees people wearing "Muslim garb." NPR terminated Williams' contract on Wednesday evening.

Huckabee said he "will no longer accept interview requests from NPR as long as they are going to practice a form of censorship, and since NPR is funded with public funds, it is a form of censorship."

"It is time for the taxpayers to start making cuts to federal spending, and I encourage the new Congress to start with NPR," he said.

NPR says federal funding comprises less than 2 percent of its budget, with most of its financial support coming from station fees, sponsorships and grants.

Like Williams, the former Arkansas governor is also a contributor to the Fox News channel.

Huckabee called Williams "refreshingly honest and candid," adding: "There isn't a more honest and fair-minded person in journalism."


Filed under: Juan Williams • Mike Huckabee
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Eric in RTP

    This demonstrates what kind of rash fluke Mike Huckabee is he says he "will no longer accept interview requests from NPR as long as they are going to practice a form of censorship" .. uhh hello! They fired someone for making comments on another show ... they did not censor anything... some people just like to make condescending claims and uninformed rants, he would be an excellent tea party candidate... the shoe definitely fits.

    October 21, 2010 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  2. tamara underwood

    Very sad juan is a victim of his own "FREEDOM OF SPEACH". NPA should have$ pilled. Let them run on public funding alone.

    October 21, 2010 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  3. AJ

    Huckabee is about as dishonest as they come. About what one would expect from a christian.

    October 21, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  4. Tony Z

    Let me see if I understand Gov. Huckabee. Cut their funding because they fired an at-will employee. Sounds like the American Way. Save the Government money- How much? Show mean the financials on the impact to the Government budget on this one.

    October 21, 2010 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  5. dablupaplu

    So, as per Mike Huckabee, it is OK to speak bad about followers of a certain religion and it is considered FREE SPEECH!
    Mr. Huckabee, It is NOT Free Speech, it is HATE SPEECH.
    I am GLAD MIKE HUCKABEE has not been elected to lead MY COUNTRY!

    October 21, 2010 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  6. Dean

    I agree. NPR sucks. Let NPR rely 100% on private funding.

    October 21, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  7. Philip

    Huckabee, you and Williams both work for Fox News. Are you trying to imply that Fox News allows greater freedom of expression than NPR? If you didn't have a financial interest in your statement here, it might be a little more credible.

    October 21, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  8. Ex Republican

    BTW, Will Juan be OK if I say I do not go to Washington Nationals games because the field is in the middle of a black area and I get scared being around black people??? would you say I am being honest about speaking my mind or would you say I am being a racist? which one is it? I can tell you it can not be both so your answer can not be an honest racist.

    October 21, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  9. W.G.

    Mr. williams was expressing his opinion he said nothing derogatory and he was expressing his honest opinion .
    I´m rather shocked by NPR´s actions . I hope free speech does not become a matter of office policy and that
    our jobs depend on what we say or don´t say .

    October 21, 2010 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  10. Lucullus

    Spoken like a true member of the jack boot right. Huckabee calls NPR a purveyor of politically correct pabulum and protector of views that lean left, while hosting a show on the official mouth piece of the GOP, Fox News. What a hypocritical SOS. What's next Mike a lecture on the wonders of the 1st Amendment and freedom of speech?

    October 21, 2010 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  11. Dink

    Go Mike. One of the last open-minded voices on NPR and they sack him. I'm sure Maura Liason will be next.

    Funny how this happens right after NPR accepts $.18 Million from George Soros.

    October 21, 2010 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  12. Joe

    Maybe this loser should have quit NPR and went full time at fox because we all know How Fair And Balanced they are. So why is this an issue in the first place. Its just another excuse for the rabid right wing dogs to foam at the mouth and scream Cut NPR Funding. Hey Huckabee if you think this will make you a stronger canidate for the 2012 race better try harder.

    October 21, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  13. Earl Grey decaf

    Y'know, I've long noticed a left-leaning bias on NPR. I heartily agree with the Governor that my tax dollars should not be used to pay for a stealth member of the MSM.

    It's also really cool that the Governor is taking a stand for an individual suffering injustice. Juan Williams has a right to be scared, and he has a right to say so.

    October 21, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  14. Billionaire

    Big surprise here. Two FOX News contributors rallying to defeat a publicly funded radio station. I guess the thinking of FOX and its many cronies is if you can knock out any centrist outlets for news, you can further polarize the country.

    October 21, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  15. mar

    Let me get this straight, when Rick Sanchez says Jews control the media he gets fired and no one says anything. But when this guy says he is scared of muslims on the plane and he is fired then everyone cries wolf. Make up your mind people, can we talk nasty about other religions/cultures or not....you can't have it both ways.

    October 21, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  16. Dean

    Williams told Fox News host Bill O'Reilly on Monday that he gets "worried" and "nervous" on flights when he sees people wearing "Muslim garb." NPR terminated Williams' contract on Wednesday evening.....................................................................................So much for freedom of speech. Who listens to NPR anyway?

    October 21, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  17. Jeremy-Dallas

    What kind of Christian values does this ex-governor preach? Williams comments are depicable and no wonder they both belong to fox. This Talibanic attitude will tear this country down.

    October 21, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  18. Debbie from Arizona

    While as a rule, I tend to disagree with Mr.Huckabee, I believe that NPR went too far in firing Mr. Williams. All points of view should be allowed to be heard, not just politically correct views.

    October 21, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  19. Rick in OP

    I have listened to Juan Williams for years. Though I may diagree with him on issues, the last thing you could ever accuse this man of is being a racist. It is absolutely shameful that political correctness has overwhelmed common sense.

    NPR is irrelevant. I hope Juan sues the hell out of them.

    October 21, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  20. rex breitenbach

    only 2 percent ? good then you shouldn't miss it

    October 21, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  21. redware

    I have always respected Juan Williams.Although I rarely agree with him, I have always found his arguments to be well reasoned and fair.NPR is nothing but another Pravda trumpeting the pro-socialist Obama administration.Thank God the American people are rising up to send these big government,big spending,anti-capitalist,pro-Muslim,pro illegal aliens packing!

    October 21, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  22. Dean

    It is about time that the politically correct people of this country realize that the Muslim terrorists of the world do not like us and are at war with us.

    October 21, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  23. jt68

    Good for you Mike Huckabee! If it's only 2% of their budget, I'm sure they can live without it. Just like how I can live without NPR and their liberal/PC hypocrisy.

    October 21, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  24. barry

    NPR should receive no tax dollars. I don't want my money going toward that propaganda. I don't want to pay to repair mosque either.

    October 21, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  25. Rick Geary

    I have listened to NPR for years, but the firing of Juan Williams over this comment, tells me that this network neither supports the U.S. Constitution nor free speech. I will cease support of NPR in the future and urge others, including Congress, to do the same.

    October 21, 2010 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
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