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NPR Chief Executive Vivian Schiller resigns amid 'tea party' controversy

March 9, 2011 |  8:51 am

Schiller NPR's chief executive, Vivian Schiller, has resigned after an outgoing NPR executive disparaged the "tea party" political movement, the public broadcaster announced on Wednesday.

"It is with deep regret that I tell you that the NPR Board of Directors has accepted the resignation of Vivian Schiller as President and CEO of NPR, effective immediately," NPR said in a statement. "The Board accepted her resignation with understanding, genuine regret, and great respect for her leadership of NPR these past two years."

Schiller's departure comes one day after a video surfaced in which NPR executive Ron Schiller (no relation) described tea party supporters as racists and "gun-toting" Christian fundamentalists who had "hijacked" the Republican Party. He also suggested that NPR would be "better off in the long run" without federal support.

The video served as ammunition for Republicans on Capitol Hill who want to eliminate all federal funding for the public broadcaster. On Tuesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said the video “clearly highlights the fact that public broadcasting doesn’t need taxpayer funding to thrive, and I hope that admission will lead to a bipartisan consensus to end these unnecessary federal subsidies."

James Oliphant has the full story: Vivian Schiller, NPR chief, resigns amid 'tea party' video fallout

-- Melissa Maerz

Photo: Vivian Schiller. Credit: NPR

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