MSNBC's Karen Finney and The Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart surround Dylan Ratigan.
The spirit of the Constitutional Convention’s Great Compromise was alive and well deep in the wood-paneled underground private dining room of P.J. Clarke’s
Sidecar on Thursday evening, as television journalist and author Dylan Ratigan
moderated a spirited discussion between Senator Bernie Sanders
(I-VT) and Congressman David Schweikert
Co-hosted by The Week
magazine and MSNBC
, in consultation with veteran TV producer and former MSNBC executive Tammy Haddad
, the panel was the first part of a two-hour event honoring Ratigan and the release of his debut book: Greedy Bastards: How We Can Stop Corporate Communists, Banksters, and Other Vampires from Sucking America Dry
While plenty of ‘wedge’ issues (e.g., abortion, etc.) between Republicans and Democrats surfaced briefly during the talk, the common thread between topics was the role of the federal government in everyday life for the average American citizen and how such a role is influenced (e.g., super PACs, the undue influence wielded by media conglomerates, etc.).
Congressman Schweikert mused: “Why are so many people…so desperate to have this kind of influence in government?”
“It’s because this government does so much… It affects your business, it affects your personal life, it affects your church… When government is all-pervasive, people are going to realize that that’s the path to wealth and power.”
But Senator Sanders countered: “Conservatives are arguing that government is too…pervasive in our lives. Now if that is your argument, how in god’s name can you then say ‘I will make a decision for a woman who is pregnant who doesn’t want to have their baby’.”
And while a true consensus to the debate never emerged at the end, the lively and good-natured spirit of the discussion resonated with guests, which made up a who’s who list of Washington’s media notables, including The Washington Post
opinion writer Jonathan Capehart
, MSNBC political analyst Karen Finney
, POLITICO’s Mike Allen
and Patrick Gavin
, and The Huffington Post D.C. Bureau VP Peter Cherukuri
, among dozens of others.
Greedy bastards apparently draw a good crowd!