While within the power-friendly environs of the corporate-funded Newseum, congressmembers John D. Rockefeller IV, Tim Pawlenty and Mary L. Landrieu probably felt pretty good about their ability to field such softballs from ABC's George Stephanopoulos as "What's the problem with the public health option?"
But upon leaving corporate TV's criticism-free zone, where such lies as Rockefeller's statement that "Medicare is gonna start going broke in 2017, which is like the day after tomorrow," pass completely unchallenged, they each were questioned by real-life journalist Sam Husseini of WashingtonStakeout.com (9/15/09).
Compare the treatment described above with Husseini's calm but determined questioning of the pols:
Sam Husseini: Health insurance mandates–don't they end up being a subsidy for the insurance companies, because you're mandating that people go out and buy their product?
Mary Landrieu: …I'm not carrying water for the insurance companies….
SH: You say you're not carrying water, but your No. 1 contributor is JP Morgan Chase, PACs and individuals associated…. And you've precluded the Medicare-for-all type option. Why shouldn't somebody conclude that you are doing the bidding of the financial industry?
And to Rockefeller's platitude, "Don't worry about the insurance companies. Believe me, we're going to take care of them," Husseini responds in a most un-Stephanopoulos manner:
You say not to worry about the insurance companies, but even though you obviously come from a very wealthy family, you've raised money for your campaigns–the No. 1 sector, according to Open Secrets, is finance and insurance. Why shouldn't it be seen that a lot of people in Congress are in effect doing the bidding of the insurance companies?