De Niro rips arts cuts in Trump budget
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Robert De Niro says when it comes to arts funding, what the Trump administration calls “alternative facts” is actually “bullshit.”

“The budget proposal, among its other draconian cuts to life-saving and life-enhancing programs, eliminates the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting,” the 73-year-old “Godfather Part II” actor said while accepting the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Chaplin Award on Monday in New York, according to Deadline.

“For their own divisive political purposes, the administration suggests that the money for these all-inclusive programs goes to rich liberal elites. This is what they now call an ‘alternative fact,’ but I call it bullshit,” De Niro told the audience.

The New York Times reported in March the cuts to the arts programs and public broadcasting under President Trump’s proposed budget.

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“I don’t make movies for rich liberal elites,” the Academy Award winner said on Monday. “I’ve got my restaurants for that,” De Niro — who heads up multiple high-end eateries — quipped. He added of his films, “I — and all of us speaking here tonight — make them for you.”

The director has been a fierce critic of Trump, saying ahead of the election that he’d like to “punch” the former real estate mogul in the face. He appeared to soften his tone in an interview with ITK just weeks after Trump’s November White House win, saying at the time, “I would only say that we’re all hoping, waiting and hoping, that [Trump] will lead the country in a way that’ll benefit everyone and benefit our neighbors around the world.”

De Niro also slammed Trump’s immigration ban, noting in his acceptance speech Monday that Charlie Chaplin — the English silent film star for whom his award was named — was “an immigrant who probably wouldn’t pass today’s ‘extreme vetting,’” according to The Hollywood Reporter.

“I hope we’re not keeping out the next Chaplin,” De Niro said.