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Likely Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has said he would eliminate funding for PBS and the arts endowment to help balance the federal budget.

Lynch said he doubts Republicans would go that far. Romney was supportive of arts funding as governor of Massachusetts and understood how the arts cam contribute to economic growth with jobs and by generating tax dollars, Lynch said.

“I just believe that all of the candidates out there are rational people,” he said.

Romney has said private funding should fill the void of federal dollars. One way would be adding commercials to public broadcast stations, he has said.

Lynch said arts funding provides seed money to help draw private support and donations to symphonies, theater companies and performing arts centers across the country.

With about 110,000 nonprofit arts organizations nationwide and 40,000 federal and state arts grants given out each year, he said federal funding is part of the infrastructure of the arts industry. Arts-related business also sends tax money back to government coffers, he said.

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Americans for the Arts: http://www.artsusa.org/

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