Now it's the Democrats who want the Corporation for Public Broadcasting investigated.
Reps. John Dingell of Michigan and David Obey of Wisconsin, the ranking minority members of the committees that control funding for public broadcasting, say they are concerned about news reports suggesting the CPB is making "personnel and funding decisions on the basis of political ideology."
The Washington Post says the lawmakers have written to CPB's inspector general asking for information about the recent reported activities of CPB Chairman Kenneth Tomlinson, a Republican.
Among the activities peaking the interest of Dingell and Obey:
* Tomlinson's reported hiring of a White House official to write the guidelines for CPB's newly established Ombudsmen's office.
* Why CPB's President, Kathleen Cox, was suddenly replaced by former FCC Media Bureau Chief Ken Ferree, a Republican who served under former Chairman Michael Powell.
* Why Tomlinson, without his board's knowledge, reportedly hired a consultant to monitor the PBS program "Now With Bill Moyers" for anti-Republican content.
* Whether Tomlinson was involved in obtaining funding for and PBS distribution of programming produced by The Wall Street Journal and conservative commentator Tucker Carlson.
Dingell and Obey say CPB, by statute, is prohibited from producing, scheduling or distributing programming and that it must act as a shield from political interference less public confidence be undermined. Dingell and Obey pointed to what they said was CPB's own research which stated Americans believe public radio and television content is "objective and balanced."
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