Michael Moore blasts Bush over probe into 'Sicko' trip to Cuba
LOS ANGELES, Saturday (AP) - Filmmaker Michael Moore has asked the Bush administration to call off an investigation of his trip to Cuba to get treatment for ailing Sept. 11 rescue workers for a segment in his upcoming health-care expose, ''Sicko.''
Moore, who made the hit documentary ''Fahrenheit 9/11'' assailing President George W. Bush's handling of the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, said in a letter to U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson on Friday that the White House may have opened the investigation for political reasons.
''For five and a half years, the Bush administration has ignored and neglected the heroes of the 9/11 community,'' Moore said in the letter, which he posted on the liberal Web site Daily Kos.
''These heroic first responders have been left to fend for themselves, without coverage and without care.
''I understand why the Bush administration is coming after me -- I have tried to help the very people they refuse to help, but until George W. Bush outlaws helping your fellow man, I have broken no laws and I have nothing to hide.''
Harvey Weinstein, whose Weinstein Co. is releasing ''Sicko,'' told The Associated Press the movie is a ''healing film'' that could bring opponents together over the ills of America's health-care system.
''This time, we didn't want the fight, because the movie unites both sides,'' Weinstein said. ''We've shown the movie to Republicans. Both sides of the bench love the film. The pharmaceutical industry won't like the movie. HMOs will try to run us out of town, but that's not relevant to the situation.
''The whole campaign this time was not to be incendiary. It was, can Michael Moore bring both sides together?''
The health-care industry Moore skewers in ''Sicko'' was a major contributor to Bush's 2004 re-election campaign and to Republican candidates over the last four years, Moore wrote.