Where in the World Is NPR Chair Katherine Maher?

News & Politics

The chairperson of the National Public Radio (NPR) has gone missing.

Her face isn’t on milk cartons quite yet, but it’s a good bet that Congress wants to know where she is. The House Committee on Energy and Commerce requested that NPR CEO Katherine Maher appear on Wednesday to testify about why Uri Berliner, a long-time editor at NPR, told The Free Press in an April 9 article that NPR was lousy with liberal bias.

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Maher declined.

“NPR respects the committee and its request and has offered to testify on a date in the near future that works for the committee and Maher,” the spokesperson said. “NPR has a previously scheduled and publicly posted all-day meeting of its board of directors on that date, Maher’s first such meeting since she joined NPR just six weeks ago. These meetings are scheduled more than a year in advance.”

“Maher is therefore unable to attend this week’s hearing and has communicated that to the committee and proposed alternate dates. Maher will provide written testimony in her absence,” the spokesperson continued. 

That’s a shame. The entertainment value of seeing a left-wing CEO sweat under the Klieg lights while trying to deny Berliner’s accusations would have been glorious to watch.

But as promised, Maher sent some written testimony. According to Maher, the network is “bringing trusted, reliable, independent news and information of the highest editorial standards” to millions of listeners. 

The Free Press:

Meanwhile, four witnesses from media and political think tanks gave two hours of testimony to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce about how federal money is shared between NPR and local public radio affiliates, among other issues. 

Berliner had sounded the alarm internally at NPR for years over the public’s loss of trust in the network before coming forward with his story in The Free Press. He wrote that “an open-minded spirit no longer exists within NPR, and now, predictably, we don’t have an audience that reflects America. That wouldn’t be a problem for an openly polemical news outlet serving a niche audience,” he continued, “but for NPR, which purports to consider all things, it’s devastating both for its journalism and its business model.” A New York Times investigation later showed that NPR’s weekly audience has dropped from an estimated 60 million in 2020 to about 42 million today.

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In truth, Ms. Maher is a special case. She’s not just a little biased. PJ Media’s Stephen Green called her “a Censor-Happy Parody of Wokeness.”

After Maher tweeted that she flew coach just like the rest of us plebes and “In the lounge and on the plane, usually > 80% male, usually white,” City Journal’s Christopher Rufo laid her down flat.

Berliner’s story quickly went viral, especially after biased tweets Maher had posted before she became NPR’s CEO last January started to emerge. In 2016, she urged Hillary Clinton not to say “boys and girls” because “it’s erasing language for non-binary people.” In 2018, she tweeted “Donald Trump is a racist.” And in 2021, she appeared on a panel at the Atlantic Council where she claimed the First Amendment was the “number one challenge” in the fight against disinformation.

So yeah, woke, biased, and a snob. No wonder she didn’t want to show up to testify before Congress.

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