Last night NBC gave its August 24 "Nightly News" audience a one-sided story on Katrina insurance claims. Correspondent Ron Mott stacked three critics (a plaintiff, his attorney, and another woman filing suit) of insurance companies against a one-sentence statement by State Farm insurance.
What's more, NBC's Ron Mott left out some detail about one of his featured plaintiffs: Judy Guice of Biloxi.
The NBC correspondent later introduced another angry homeowner, Judy Guice. “State Farm needs to pay,” she insisted to Mott, who described her as a Biloxi attorney who “had flood coverage and got the maximum $250,000, but wants her insurance company to pay for wind damages too.”
But Guice (rhymes with “ice”) is not just another Gulf Coast homeowner with a law degree. According to her Web site, she’s a former president for the Mississippi Trial Lawyers Association and specializes in personal injury and insurance cases. What’s more, according to the Federal Election Commission, Guice is a donor to the One America Committee (OAC), the liberal PAC started by trial lawyer and former Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards.
As the MRC's Business & Media Institute reported earlier this week, Mott's story is just another example of the media's rubric for hurricane insurance coverage: paint the industry as greedy or uncaring without giving it equal time in news reports.