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Seventy Supports a Free Press

August 17, 2018

The Committee of Seventy--one of the nation’s oldest political reform organizations--stands this week with editorial boards and commentators around the country in expressing deep concern about attacks on journalism and journalists, and applauds any and all efforts to push back on attempts to limit a free and independent news media.

“A strong press is fundamental to the health of our local democracy. Over the years, Seventy has worked with journalists in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania to ensure that tax dollars are well-spent, bad actors are called out and government is held accountable,” said Seventy President and CEO David Thornburgh.

In city halls and state capitals, the public depends on an ever-smaller cadre of reporters to apply rigorous scrutiny to public officials and special interests. Despite fewer resources and personnel, local outlets continue to play an essential role in presenting facts and uncovering waste, fraud and abuse.

“We still believe fervently in the words of former Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan that while ‘everyone is entitled to their own opinions...they are not entitled to their own facts,’” said Thornburgh. “Now more than ever, we need strong and independent journalism to help us discern which is which, and to shed light on the operations of government.”

The Committee of Seventy urges citizens committed to upholding a vibrant and open democracy to invest in local newsrooms that contribute to this cause.

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The Committee of Seventy is a nonpartisan civic leadership organization that advances representative, ethical and effective government in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania through citizen engagement and public policy advocacy.