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More trouble for NPR.
A few months after analyst Juan Williams was fired for making incendiary remarks, an executive has been caught on tape calling Tea Partiers ‘racist,’ according to The New York Times. (Listen to an edited version on The Daily Caller, and an unedited version at TheProjectVeritas.com.)
Schiller is in charge of soliciting non-federal funding for the radio syndicator, which is currently defending itself against Congressional Republicans who believe NPR is biased and are trying to cut federal funding for local stations.
On the tape, Schiller tells people posing as Muslim philanthropists that the Republican party has been “hijacked” by the Tea Party, which he says is made up of “seriously racist, racist people.” Schiller notes that’s his personal point of view, not that of NPR’s. (At one point, he says, “Now I’ll talk personally as opposed to wearing my NPR hat” and another time, he says “in my personal opinion.”)
He also criticizes an “anti-intellectual move on the part of a significant part of the Republican party.”
Dana Davis Rehm, a spokeswoman for NPR, tells the New York Times in a statement: “We are appalled by the comments made by Ron Schiller in the video, which are contrary to what NPR stands for.”
The Times says that Schiller (who is not related to NPR chief executive Vivian Schiller) was set up by controversial Republican filmmaker James O’Keefe, who has released secret videotapes of Planned Parenthood and social services grassroots organization ACORN, among others.
On the tape, Schiller is speaking to a group posing as members of the fictional Muslim Education Action Center Trust, which claim they want to donate $5 million to public media. The NPR statement continues that Schiller “repeatedly refused to accept” the check, which was offered “no strings attached.”
The group also tells Schiller that it receives funding from the Muslim Brotherhood in America, which supports schools. He replies, “I think what we all believe is if we don’t have Muslim voices in our schools, on the air, I mean, it’s the same thing we faced as a nation when we didn’t have female voices.”
Schiller announced last week that he has accepted a job at the Aspen Institute. The nonprofit announced in an internal memo obtained by the Times: “There is no connection between the video and his decision to leave NPR,” adding that the position is closer to his home in Colorado.
NPR fired Williams last October after he said on Fox News that he is afraid when he sees Muslim people on airplanes. He is now a full-time correspondent for Fox with a nearly $2 million contract.
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