Sawyer and Williams Cue Up Pelosi to Expound on Her ‘Fear’ Debt Deal Will ‘Hurt Real People’

Two network anchors, 24 hours apart, cued up House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi to despair from the left how the debt ceiling deal, presumably because of some future potential slight reductions in the projected rate of spending increases, will “hurt real people” as NBC’s Brian Williams asked her to confirm her “fear” that “the poor are gonna get hurt and the rich are gonna get by without harm.”

On Monday’s World News, ABC’s Diane Sawyer inquired (video below): “You think this is really going to hurt real people?”

During Sunday’s Dateline, “Taking the Hill: Inside Congress,” viewers heard NBC’s Brian Williams, in an exchange which occurred last Wednesday, tell the former House Speaker: “A liberal member said to me his fear is the poor are gonna get hurt and the rich are gonna get by without harm in this. Is that your fear?”

Neither cued up any Republican leader with a similar leading question from the right. Sawyer also talked to John Boehner and Williams interviewed several for his Sunday night special. In fact, NBC earlier highlighted Williams hitting a GOP leader from the left:

Running a brief excerpt from his Sunday night Dateline special, “Taking the Hill: Inside Congress,” Brian Williams on Thursday evening showcased one and only one question he posed to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. He demanded: “Why shouldn't rich folks pay more?”

Though the debt deal doesn’t actually “cut” any spending as it doesn’t touch entitlement programs and allows discretionary spending to grow by tens of billions each year, Sawyer ominously warned the deal will “reduce government spending by more than $2 trillion over ten years and ultimately it’s expected to take a machete to programs ranging from student loans to the defense budget.”
 


From the Monday, August 1 World News:

DIANE SAWYER, IN PELOSI’S OFFICE: So you are voting for it?

NANCY PELOSI, HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: Absolutely. We have to get this over with. We have to get to work putting people back to work and every day that we were stuck in this negotiation was a day that we weren't doing everything we -- in our power to create jobs.

SAWYER: Bitter pill?

PELOSI: Well, it's more than a bitter pill. What would be the next stage up from a bitter pill?

SAWYER: So if it takes the Democratic votes to do this, to avoid default, you're going to deliver them?

PELOSI: The Democrats are not going to have the country default. I'm not saying they're happy about it. At the end of the day, we're voting for a bill that has severe cuts in our domestic agenda. That impedes our economic growth.

SAWYER: You think this is really going to hurt real people?

PELOSI: Well, I hope not. How could we have severe cuts to our domestic agenda, the education of our children, for example, and not one red cent coming from those who can afford to share the sacrifice that is necessary to reduce the deficit.

From the Sunday, July 31 Dateline, “Taking the Hill: Inside Congress”:

BRIAN WILLIAMS: Back in Pelosi's office she's already talking about what the impact of the ultimate deal will be.

WILLIAMS TO REP. NANCY PELOSI: A liberal member said to me his fear is the poor are gonna get hurt and the rich are gonna get by without harm in this. Is that your fear?

REP. NANCY PELOSI: Well my concern is for the great middle-class and we want to have a resolution of this that is for a hundred percent of the American people. Republicans want to have a resolution that is for the two percent.

Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center