Mary Bottari is the Deputy Director of the Center for Media and Democracy. She helped launch CMD's award-winning ALEC Exposed investigation and has spearheaded CMD's work on the financial crisis and the painfully slow recovery. Previously, Mary worked for ten years at the consumer group Public Citizen and served as a senior analyst on trade, financial services, toxics regulation, and food safety. She worked in Washington for U.S. Senator Russ Feingold and in the Wisconsin State Senate. Mary contributes frequently to the Huffington Post, Truthout, The Nation, the Capital Times and other media outlets. Her research has been used by Washington Post, the New York Times, Business Week, Marketplace, CNN, Bill Moyers Journal, MSNBC and dozens of Wisconsin media outlets.
When too-big-to-fail financial service institutions collapsed the global economy in 2008, Mary launched CMD's BanksterUSA website where she gained a following for making complex banking issues simple and fun, and for poking fun at the big banks and government officials for their weak reform proposals and outrageous efforts to spin the financial crisis. At a time when the public was upset about the $700 billion TARP bailout bill, the Bankster project downloaded Federal Reserve data to publish a monthly tally, program by program, showing that the Total Wall Street Bailout was approaching $5 trillion. This was one of the first actual tallies produced, long before Bloomberg's open records lawsuit revealed that the Fed put $7 trillion on the line to backstop the big banks.
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