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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  October 8, 2013 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT

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lot stronger levels in a very, very tough economy. >> guys, thanks very much. i'll be back in one hour in "the situation room." our special coverage continues right now with "the lead." jake tapper picking up our coverage. sure, lawmakers are still enjoying taxpayer funded gym time but it's not clear if they have towel service. we all have to make sacrifices during the shutdown. this is "the lead." the national lead, the president wrapping a news conference this hour after a terse phone call with speaker boehner. did he just open a slight possibility in which to cut a deal? meanwhile, members of congress can work out at their exclusive gyms which remain open while the shutdown adds insult to injury for the families of our fallen service men and women. who is looking out for them? we'll ask the head of the house veterans affairs committee. and the pop culture lead. it would be funny if it weren't infuriating. few people are smiling about what's happening in washington right now but hollywood has squeezed laughs and drama out of this kind of situation before.
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good afternoon, everyone. welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we begin of course with this national lead. they're talking, but they're mostly just saying the same thing they have been saying for eight days now with one notable exception. less than an hour ago, president obama wrapped a news conference at the white house and reiterated his position on the partial government shutdown and the debt ceiling. he is perfectly ready to sit down and talk with republicans just as soon as they pass a clean temporary spending bill to reopen the government without any strings attached to obama care funding, and a clean bill to raise the debt ceiling which the u.s. will hit next week. if, this is a big if, if congress were to pass those measures, they could very well be short term, maybe just a few weeks long. president obama was asked about that possibility and here's that exchange. >> if that happens, does your offer to negotiate with them on issues like health care and spending and deficit reduction still stand in the intervening
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weeks, perhaps six weeks or ten or 12? >> absolutely. what i've said is i will talk about anything. the only thing that i will say is that we're not going to pay a ransom for america paying its bills. >> that may not be much but it's something. the president seems open to signing short term bills but a senior republican source tells dana bash that there are no talks at any level currently to resolve this. house speaker john boehner will make a statement at 4:30 p.m. eastern. you will see it here live. earlier today, boehner once again demanded that the president come to the proverbial table. >> all we're asking for is to sit down and have this conversation. there is no reason to make it more difficult to bring people to the table. there's no boundaries here. there's nothing on the table. there's nothing off the table. i'm trying to do everything i can to bring people together and to have a conversation. >> oh, they had a conversation, all right. this morning, president obama called speaker boehner and essentially said the same thing
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he told him when they met last week and the same thing he said in his news conference, end the shutdown, raise the debt ceiling and only then we'll talk. short of handcuffing president obama and speaker boehner together until they work this out, it's hard to envision how these two are going to come together on this, considering how dug in they both seem at this point. the president says he's open to a short term clean bill to fund the government, but are congressional democrats with him? let's talk to one of them. democratic senator bob casey from the great state of pennsylvania. i should disclose i'm from pennsylvania. >> we're glad you are. >> do you support a potential short term spending bill, six weeks, maybe, lift the debt ceiling, reopen the government and then maybe have conversations? was that something you could go along with? >> as you know, i'm just holding this document, this is a 16-page bill, this is the key to opening the government. that's in front of the house. they should pass it. what this does is keep the government open to the middle of november, then we can have a lot of discussions but the key thing right now is the house should
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vote today to open the government. they should vote to pay our bills, then we can have lots of negotiations. i would argue, jake, that it's not been reported much but i would argue we negotiated and compromised weeks ago when we agreed to a $70 billion cut and they didn't agree or they wouldn't go along with their end of the deal, which was to keep the government open. >> that's what senate democrats say harry reid and others, that they negotiated with john boehner, he agreed to this, it was actually a big concession by democrats, according to this account, but then boehner went back and couldn't get his caucus to go along with this. >> $70 billion is a lot of money. look, we're not asking for something that's unreasonable. we're saying open the government up. then -- make sure we don't default. once you do those two things, there's lots to negotiate but this idea that somehow we're going to have some kind of a meeting to talk about how the government opens when all it needs is pass the bill, 16 pages, read it in short order, vote on it this afternoon, the government could open before
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tomorrow morning. >> republicans insisted on tying defunding obama care to funding the government. that's just a fact. now we're in this place. while it's true that house republicans are taking a beating in public opinion polls, although democrats aren't doing much better, but house republicans are getting the brunt of it, according to a new cbs news poll, 76% of the american people think the president and democrats should compromise in order to come to an agreement. do the democrats bear any responsibility now? i will posit for the purpose of this question that this is all the republicans' fault that we're here, but even with that in mind, do democrats have any responsibility for offering more concessions or anything to help get us out? >> there's a bill sitting there they can vote on today. >> you're saying that is the concession? >> 16 pages, they can keep the government open. but look, i think there are lots of republicans and certainly lots of democrats and independents who want to move forward. the problem we have is this is a tea party shutdown.
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the tea party is preventing the opening up of the government. why else would speaker boehner months ago say to harry reid and in essence to his whole caucus we're going to agree to keep the government open, if you agree to have that $70 billion cut. he went back to the tea party and they vetoed that and they have been vetoing ever since the opening of the government. >> one of the things that republicans have asked for and attached to some of their spending bills, their government spending bills, is a repeal of the medical device tax, which is part of obama care. you have been very critical of that tax. why not just -- >> i have supported a repeal but the idea that when you want something done on your list of priorities, that you're going to threaten the full faith and credit of the united states and essentially default or i should say by way of a default, and that you're going to shut the government down, harry reid gave an example today where he was opposed to the war in iraq and contemplated or thought about the idea of trying to move in the direction of a shutdown. he abandoned that idea because
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he said i can't shut the government down because i disagree with the policy, one particular policy, even something as grave as a question of war. so if that's the approach that democrats have taken when their core issue, in that case the war in iraq, was at stake, i don't see how tea party republicans can say that unless they get their way on defunding or substantially changing obama care, that we should shut the government down. >> we all know we're looking for a way out. in the past, negotiations between vice president biden and the senate minority leader mitch mcconnell have actually helped. there have been two impasses, i think. the last one of these debt ceiling debates, then also the midnight thing on new year's about the bush tax cuts. there's a politico story out today saying that harry reid insisted to the white house biden can't be doing that this time. don't you think that maybe at this late hour, so close to the debt ceiling, we would benefit from biden trying to help?
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>> i don't think you necessarily need a new player in this debate. i think it's very clear, you know eastern pennsylvania, you have in our congressional delegation several republicans, as many as five in the last couple weeks have said they will vote for a clean funding bill to keep the government operating. that's not agreeing to much, by the way, because it's going to be short term. so you have a bipartisan agreement in pennsylvania, in our delegation, which is very diverse to vote for a clean funding bill to keep the government open, and therefore, to negotiate after we get it opened. >> all right. senator casey from the great state of pennsylvania, thank you for coming in. great to see you. really appreciate it. up next, is the president helping his cause with these now daily on-camera barbs at republicans or is he just reinforcing their line about him refusing to open a dialogue? we break it down. in the pop culture lead, this shutdown could be next month's plot line.
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welcome back to "the lead." it's the politics lead. it's a war of words. we're waiting for john boehner to speak live this hour responding to president obama who of course just moments ago tried to call boehner's bluff in the debt debate. >> speaker boehner keeps on saying he doesn't have the votes for it, and what i've said is put it on the floor, see what
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happens. >> by cnn's count, the votes may indeed be there. 200 democrats and 18 republicans tell cnn they would vote for a clean continuing resolution to fund the government, and while the president was speaking, senator reid called his colleagues to the chamber of the senate to talk about the crisis. there, republican senators took to the floor and said it's time for the higher chamber to lead the compromise. >> there's a number of issues that we could sit down and negotiate, within an hour, if we will stop, stop attacking each other and impugning people's integrity and honor. >> good luck with that. so what card will the speaker play now? let's bring in our panel. senior writer for the washington examiner, phillip klein, hillary rosen and national political correspondent for the "new york times" jonathan martin. still feels good to say that. john, i want to play some more sound from the president and get your reaction. >> whenever i see john boehner to this day, i still say should have taken the deal that i
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offered you back then. >> talking about their discussions about the grand bargain back in 2011. they have been down this road before. how much does what happened in 2011 play into what is happening today? >> oh, i think it's huge. past is prologue. i think president obama felt like he was out there on a limb and it was sawed off and i think speaker boehner and his folks feel like they were willing to deal and president obama moved the goalpost on them. a lot of bad blood, lot of bitterness still from that summer of 2011 episode. as you recall, that really triggered the start of the '12 campaign. after that deal went south the summer of '11, president obama started his re-election and that really is where we are now. >> i think -- go ahead. >> i was going to say, at that moment, president obama was a little farther out than the congressional democrats in terms of the cuts he was willing -- >> entitlements, yeah. >> the cuts he was willing to take and entitlements and things like that. democrats said we're going to stick with you because this is
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going to mean something over the long term. now, over this last year as we heard from senator casey just now, democrats again went to the mat, got more budget cuts. so i think particularly now, congressional democrats are lockstep with the president to say we have given concessions now only mean that we lose more in exchange for you doing your job and keeping the government open. so democrats don't see negotiating as a real negotiation. they just see it as more concession. >> to be fair, it's not unprecedented for government spending bills and the debt limit increase to be accompanied by things that congress wants from the president. it's happened. >> but what does the president and what do democrats get? we have been on their budgets playbook for several years. they have gotten a lot of cuts, as we have been listening to. are they going to put immigration on the table or a climate change bill on the table? no. what they want to do is find little ways to wiggle away at health insurance. that's not a starter. >> how long can boehner hold this position?
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>> well, you know, we'll see how long. mi i mean, i think once you push up against the debt limit it becomes more problematic. >> october 17th. next week. >> i think that's when you're going to see more, you know, more pressure on him to do something. but i think that one of the issues, you go back to 2011, is that what happened there was that we ended up with the sequester, which right now is what democrats are arguing is a concession that they're giving to republicans and saying just pass the c.r. at the sequester levels. so i think one of the problems is that democrats are making two arguments that are cutting against each other. on the one hand, they're saying just pass a clean c.r. and we'll negotiate with you when the reason that they have the c.r. at that level in the first place is that they held out and took things to the brink on the debt limit in 2011. that's the only way that
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republicans have gotten concessions and have gotten compromise from obama is by taking things to the brink. >> you want to say something? >> yeah. i think president obama has clearly had enough of that. i think he realizes that that kind of negotiating has given them more than he's gotten in exchange. i think that's why he's now taking a hard line. >> you know, i think also, the president is doing something else. he's not up for re-election. he's not playing politics. what he's saying is that we are not going to keep being held hostage here and in essence, he's doing finally some favors i think for congressional democrats's doing finally some i think for congressional democrats who are tired of budget cuts and want some of their priorities, like immigration or like climate change. the president saying you know what, i got your back this time. that's being very well received by senate democrats and house democrats. >> we talked about this before, but if it weren't for this government shutdown, obama care and the problems with it would
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be getting a lot more attention. the health and human services secretary kathleen sebelius went on "the daily show" last night. he started off by saying he was going to download every movie ever made -- >> which would have been illegal. >> we'll see which one succeeds first. there was also this exchange about how many people have enrolled in obama care. >> how many have signed up thus far? >> fully enrolled? i can't tell you. because i don't know. we are taking applications on the web, on the phone, we will be giving monthly reports. >> what's striking to me is this is a politician, president obama, who has run two historic campaigns using the most sophisticated technology that is out there to outpace significantly his two competitors, yet when it comes to governing, for some reason, he cannot apply the same kind of technology and same kind of sophistication to his actual policy making. >> the problem is that the law
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was poorly designed. we're seeing a lot of that now. >> the law was poorly designed? >> the law was poorly designed. we're seeing now a lot of the fruits of that. i.t. professionals for months and years have been talking about how the exchanges weren't going to be ready. we had government reports, oversight reports, months ago saying the exchanges wouldn't be ready. and the democratic line and obama administration kept saying on october 1st, everything will be ready. and nothing's ready. last time i was here before the exchange opened, we talked about how the exchanges might not be able to calculate prices well. well, now you can't even log in to get to the point where you try to calculate the price. that's how poorly managed it is. >> i know the democratic line on this is it's good to have this problem, it's so many people trying to sign up, i understand that. but this is a serious problem. this is really bad. if it weren't for the republicans and the government shutdown right now, this would be getting a lot of attention. it can't be helping the president's cause. >> you know, it's also
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complicated by the fact that many of the problems are also in the state exchanges, not the federal exchanges. so the ones that the federal government, that kathleen sebelius doesn't have enough control over because those states that have opted in have created their own technology and -- >> the big success, of course, is kentucky, which has its own exchange. >> there's no question there are problems here, but it's not a rationale for taking away the health care option for 30 million people. >> all right. thank you all so much. coming up, you have probably heard it described like an excerpt from a mccarthy novel. but what would a default really look like? we will ask experts. and bwhat's in a name? a whole lot of controversy if you're the washington redskins. people don't have to think about where their electricity comes from. they flip the switch-- and the light comes on. it's our job to make sure that it does.
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welcome back to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we are awaiting remarks from house speaker john boehner in just a few minutes. meanwhile, in our money lead, a dismal day for the stock market. the dow did a swan dive amid this partial government shutdown
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in fears of hitting the debt ceiling next week, october 17th to be precise. i want to get to allison kosik of the new york stock exchange. i hesitate to ask. how low did it go today? >> it went low again today, the dow falling 159 points on top of falling 136 points yesterday. you know what this is? this is wall street yet again firing another warning shot to washington saying you know what, you will get more of this if you don't get your act together, if you don't come up with a solution, not just on the shutdown but the debt ceiling. the debt ceiling is what's worrying wall street the most. as far as stocks go, down seems like the path of least resistance. you look at the past, what, 11 sessions, it's been down -- the dow has actually been down 11 times in the past 14 sessions. many analysts say expect stocks to stay under pressure until a deal is done. on the other side of this, many really believe that a default is unlikely, they don't think that congress is going to be that
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foolish and is going to take it that far. but listen to this, jake. if a default happens, there's one analyst who says the s&p 500 could drop 45%. that's astounding. remember, many of our investment funds, many of our 401(k)s, they track the s&p 500. that could be disastrous. jake? >> some grim news. thank you so much. the president in his news conference today made a point to say the private sector agrees with him when it comes to the dangers of hitting the debt ceiling deadline next week. >> it makes absolutely no sense to let it be used as a lever for other things. if you want to change laws on abortion or immigration or you name it, tax laws, whatever, let that be a piece of legislation that people hammer out. but to tie it to something about whether you break the promises of the united states government to people all over the world just makes no sense. so it ought to be banned as a weapon.
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it should be like -- it should be like nuclear bombs, basically. too horrible to use. >> let's bring in matt miller, senior adviser in the office of management and budget during the clinton administration. he's now a senior fellow at the center for american progress. here in washington, doug aiken, from the former some republicans are out there arguing that the october 17th deadline is being exaggerated. take a listen. >> i would dispel the rumor that is going around that you hear on every newscast that if we don't raise the debt ceiling, we will default on our debt. we won't. >> i think it's irresponsible of the president and his men to even talk about default. there's no reason for us to default. we bring in $250 billion in taxes every month. our interest payment is $20 billion. tell me why we would ever default. >> doug, what's your take on that? knowing you a little, i find it hard to believe you would agree with that. >> and i don't. the bottom line is semantics
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aside, failure to raise the debt ceiling leads to very bad economic outcomes and chaos in the financial markets. the treasury may or may not be able to prioritize interest payments, pay them first. most people say they can't. you can't. but past that, the politics are ugly. we'll pay the chinese but not our senior citizens social security, and the confidence effects are horrible. if an international lender looks at a country and says you know, you can make interest payments but you're not paying for your highway bills or social security or medicare, they're not going to lend you more money. interest rates will go up. you'll have trouble. >> this is a major talking point in the republican party now, that it's not that big a deal. >> we don't know and we shouldn't want to find out. this is something that i think is extremely dangerous. shutdown never historically has been a big deal. messing with the debt limit is something i don't want to try. >> matt, i want to get your response to this talk from republicans. you just heard senator coburn and senator rand paul talking
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about not that big a deal to default or hit that ceiling. >> i think that's crazy. i think doug and i agree, even if the treasury were able to prioritize payments which it's not clear they can do, it would mean a dramatic cut in the rest of the government which would throw us into a major recession or worse. so the idea that we would even be talking about this is nuts. however, i do think we're here because the republicans learned from 2011 that obama, when he caved in 2011, could be pushed to the edge and would cut a deal, and that's why i'm worried that we're really going to be in real peril in the next ten days or so because obama rightly realizes he cannot allow this again. that's why he calls it extortion. but the republican rump group, tea party caucus, thinks that's what he said last time and we got exactly what we wanted, a big deal on spending cuts over ten years. i think that's a formula for
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potential unintended awful consequences. >> i think it's very important to recognize the economic consequences are severe and that's why these initial negotiating positions, that's what they are on both sides, really don't mean that much. what matters is getting a deal done, getting it done before the 17th, before drop-dead date, and the sooner the president, senator reid and the leader, speaker boehner, get together on a deal, the better for the economy. >> but the other -- >> go ahead, matt. >> the other problem is, there's a good chance that we'll end up with a series of stopgap measures, so we'll end up in this kind of endless fiscal cliff where the congress says all right, you know, we're up against october 17th, let's buy another month. then let's buy another six weeks. and i think in the eyes of the world, we will look like a totally ungovernable democracy again because both sides have reached a point where because of 2011, because obama caved, he can't do it again and the gop wants to call that bluff. it's a dangerous moment. >> this kind of speculation i
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don't think helps. we don't know the end game. what we do know is the president showed some flexibility today, said he might be open to a short term deal. he's negotiating. >> we will go to house speaker john boehner. >> i will say it was a pleasant conversation, although i have to say i was disappointed that the president refuses to negotiate. when it comes to the issue of funding our government, the house has passed four bills. four bills to fund our government and provide fairness to the american people under obama care. each of those four bills was rejected by the united states senate. under the constitution, and our system of government, we asked that they sit down and have a conversation with us about funding the government, keeping it open, and providing fairness to the american people under obama care. they have refused to do it. now, over the last 30 years, dozens of times, there have been negotiations over funding our government. all of those negotiations over
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the last 30 years have resulted in significant policy changes and i would remind you that the president of the united states and i sat down in the spring of 2011 to negotiate a funding bill for the government from march all the way through september. during that negotiation, there were all kinds of policy considerations and if you recall, the opportunity scholarships for kids here in d.c. was, in fact, restored into law. so the president's position that listen, we're not going to sit down and talk to you until you surrender is just not sustainable. it's not our system of government. when it comes to the debt limit, i agree with the president. we should pay our bills. i didn't come here to shut down the government. i certainly didn't come here to default on our debt. but when it comes to the debt limit, again, over the last 40 years, 27 times the debt limit
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has been used to carry significant policy changes that would, in fact, reduce spending and put us on a saner fiscal path. president reagan sat down with tip o'neill in the 1980s. president bush in 1990 went out to andrews air force base and got into a long debate and negotiation with democrats here in congress. bill clinton went through this three times in the 1990s. president obama and i sat down in 2011 and had a serious negotiation. and while the president today suggested that i walked away from the deal, i would have to remind him that i was in the oval office along with the majority leader, eric cantor, when we in fact had an agreement that two days later, the president walked away from. but there was, in fact, another negotiation in 2011 that resulted in really the largest
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deficit reduction bill that we've seen here in the last 30 years. but in 2010, when democrats controlled the congress and president obama was in the white house, what happened was a group of moderate democrats in the house wouldn't agree to raise the debt limit without a negotiation. so there was a negotiation then amongst democrats over raising the debt ceiling. the long and short of it is there is going to be a negotiation here. we can't raise the debt ceiling without doing something about what's driving us to borrow more money and to live beyond our means. the idea that we should continue to spend money that we don't have and give the bill to our kids and our grandkids would be wrong. this isn't about me and frankly, it's not about republicans. this is about saving the future for our kids and our grandkids and the only way this is going to happen is to in fact have a conversation. so it's time to have that conversation.
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not next week, not next month. the conversation ought to start today. and i'm hopeful that whether it's the president or a democrat leader here in the congress, we can begin that conversation. >> can you tell us please, what would you say to military families who have just been denied death benefits due to the shutdown? >> last week, the congress passed the pay our military benefits act. we gave broad authority to the department of defense to pay all kinds of bills, including this. and frankly i think it's disgraceful that they're withholding these benefits. but again tomorrow, the house is going to act specifically on this and i hope the president will sign it. >> mr. speaker, the president made it extremely clear that [ inaudible ]. you are making it extremely clear that he has to negotiate. what happens in all candor if it is 11:59 on october 17th and
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we're not there? >> at times like this, the american people expect their leaders to sit down and have a conversation. i want that conversation to occur now. >> the president said today that he would negotiate if there was a temporary deal. >> what the president said today was if there's unconditional surrender by republicans, he will sit down and talk to us. that's not the way our government works. thanks, everybody. >> a little history lesson from professor boehner. let's bring back our political panel for reaction. cnn contributor and democratic strategy hillary rosen. senior writer for the washington examiner, philip klein and political correspondent for "new york times" jonathan martin. in addition to that 2011 failed deal we were talking about before boehner spoke which he referred to again and president obama referred to earlier, we also had this history lesson from speaker boehner talking about how it is not unusual for debt limit votes to be
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accompanied by legislation, reagan and tip o'neill did it, bush went to andrews air force base, bill clinton did it three times with newt gingrich. he's right. that is true. i'm not saying that we should be in a shutdown right now but this is an accurate historical assessment. >> except now i'm legitimately confused, because a month ago, this all started with ted cruz and 30 or 40 tea party house members saying we are going to shut down the government and not raise the debt ceiling unless they repeal obama care. and all of a sudden, he's talking about runaway spending and other budgets. what is it exactly that they're doing? if his position now is could you just give us something, mr. president -- >> is that it, phillip? just give us something? >> i would agree that i think boehner needs to be clearer about what the ask is. he talked about 2011.
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if you go back to 2011, when he had come out in the press conference, he would say our bottom line is that we want a dollar for dollar increase, for every dollar increase in the debt limit we are going to have a dollar in spending cuts. you could agree or disagree with whether that's a good policy but that was a very clear statement of where he was coming from. and what we just heard there was it was just kind of vague. we have to sit down and hash something out, but what really is his demand. that wasn't really clear. >> jonathan, what is he looking for? >> looking for an escape hatch, right? of course he is. >> doesn't it make you wonder if speaker boehner actually negotiated something with the president around some other part of the budget, that he would go back and have the exact same problem with ted cruz and those 30 or 40 house members anyway because they didn't repeal or touch obama care. >> there are going to be elements in the house and senate in the republican caucus who
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won't vote for anything. speaker boehner is trying to get to the point where he can call a vote, ideally for him, one vote to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling limit. easier to call one vote than two. he wants to have something that can give him some cover. >> it can't just be repealing the medical device tax. has to be something bigger. >> more than that, but obviously he knows he's not going to get shutting down the entire health care program. he wants something in the middle. that's what he's grasping for. the reason he's not talking about it i don't think he knows what it looks like yet. the fact we're getting closer to october 17th, i think he recognizes he's got to have something and something fast. >> i think the problem with the medical device tax, too, as an issue is that the reason why they picked the individual mandate is that, this whole idea it has a certain populist appeal. they delayed it for corporations but not for individuals. if they end up with the medical device tax, it's just them ending up basically -- >> k street.
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>> it's something like $4 billion or $5 billion a year. >> it would raise the deficit, too, right? >> we were talking about this a second ago, which is just that when this 2011 deal broke apart and you can blame, this is not false equivalents. you literally can blame either side. president obama changed what he was asking for because a group of bipartisan senators all of a sudden had a deal, quote unquote, a deal, so he raised the amount of tax he wanted to i think $1.2 trillion as opposed to $800 billion. then it wasn't clear speaker boehner had the votes and he didn't return president obama's phone call for a whole day. there are questions about how that was handled. does speaker bayner know how to negotiate for the caucus? does he even have a handle on it when he goes -- the president basically, the democrats will go along with almost anything he wants. does boehner have that? does he know what he needs? >> i think the bigger problem is that a lot of the lowest hanging fruit was already sort of negotiated. i mean, they already negotiated
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on a lot of the discretionary spending. medicaid is never going to be touched by democrats. the medicare cuts that democrats would accept are more of the variety of the types of centralized cost controls that we saw in obama care which republicans don't want. they want to move toward more of a ryan type system. >> vouchers. >> which democrats would never accept. so i think that's the problem. i think another thing is that we saw in past budget agreements when republicans wouldn't give way on the tax front and they wouldn't agree to increase taxes, what their concession to democrats was cutting the defense budget. but i think that after the sequester and after the budgetary caps that were put into place even before the sequester, i think that there's not much more appetite among republicans to give in to more defense cuts. >> hold that thought. we'll take a very quick break. when we come back, we will go to capitol hill to get response to speaker boehner and president obama's remarks. ♪
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welcome back to "the lead." we just heard speaker john boehner call out the president for the second time today for not being willing to negotiate. joining us for some analysis, our chief congressional correspondent, dana bash on capitol hill.
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dana, speaker boehner didn't really make much news in his remarks, but both sides seem pretty dug in. >> reporter: that is the news. which i guess for it to be news, there has to be something new, which we don't have today. absolutely, what the speaker said today was -- i think, as i'm thinking about it, i was there with him watching him, i think what is new is the level of frustration that you're seeing. john boehner is a pretty cool customer and generally, if he is openly frustrated or angry, it is by design, like the other day when he threw his newspaper down. now it seems really genuine, that he is just kind of at wit's end. >> but who is he frustrated with? he seems to be frustrated with president obama, obviously, but also this is a strategy with the government shutdown that as you have reported a million times, as he said on the record in front of cameras, he did not want. he thought there should be a clean government spending bill,
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not tied to defunding obama care and that's not what ended up doing. is he frustrated with his inability to control his caucus? >> reporter: sure. that is something that has been ongoing and it is just exploded with this whole idea of the government shutdown. but i think what he is most frustrated with and the thing that is the most potentially cataclysmic is the deadlock that they're in over the debt ceiling. and that is where the speaker is absolutely convinced that he cannot take -- make a vote on a clean debt ceiling bill because that would be catastrophic to him and also catastrophic to the country, he believes. one thing that he did point out, jake, which i think is true, maybe important for us to also underscore, a lot of the negotiations and sort of to and fro over the debt ceiling wasn't just republicans versus democrats. there were conservative
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democrats who were very reluctant to vote for a debt ceiling increase without telling their constituents that they were doing something to address the debt. now, there are fewer conservative democrats because they were beaten by republicans, but it is not just a partisan issue. it is definitely something that democrats have been concerned about, too. >> dana bash on capitol hill, thank you. let's go back to our panel now. hillary, i want to read something from a former senator, democrat from nevada, who told the hill newspaper quote, president obama hasn't necessarily helped the case, giving all of these obama care waivers i think has tended to weaken his position. critics say what's wrong with one more waiver? he's given everybody in the world a waiver. i recognize we're not really talking about obama care anymore, now we're talking about the government being alive and the fiscal health of the nation and whether or not we are all going to be poor in two weeks because the stock market has crashed. that said, i haven't heard a good explanation about why all these businesses and unions got
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waivers but the individual mandate for folks the like of us is still in effect. >> first let's define what a waiver is. i know that sebelius would have done this last night if she didn't run out of time. essentially, the value in getting health care is that you need health care. the waiver to businesses was merely for employers that weren't already offering it. the individuals those employers weren't offering to have the option to go in and get their own health care so really, the most important thing for everybody is to be able to sign up, and that i think, for them to delay sign-ups and to risk this going on for another year, i think it would destroy the whole system. and the republicans know that. that's why they're pushing for it, because they hope a delay will kill the deal. >> only about 45 seconds left. final thoughts from each of you? >> yeah, look, the real issue is that delaying the employer mandate actually has the effect
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of potentially pushing more people into the exchanges. and the obama administration is desperate to get enough people into the exchanges, particularly young and healthy people, whereas if you delay the individual mandate, the result is it takes away one of -- the stick, essentially, to try to force people into the exchanges. >> if you talk to folks on the establishment gop side, this is why they are so frustrated because once president obama this summer gave businesses a one-year delay on their mandate, a lot of folks on the hill saw an opportunity to drive home this one-year delay for the individual mandate. instead of pursuing that course, they took the ted cruz course which was defund the entire thing and so you start talking about one-year delay for individuals, it came down to fund the government or defund the entire thing. >> here we are. thank you so much. coming up in the sports lead, hale to the nfl franchise from washington, d.c. the fight to get rid of the name
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redskins gets new life after president obama weighs in. [ male announcer] surprise -- you're having triplets.
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some native americans say it's as offensive as the "n" word is to african-americans. now the president weighs in on the debate other the redskins name, putting new pressure on the nfl. new brakes help you stop faster and safer. that's why they deserve... a brake dance. get 50% off new brake pads and shoes.
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welcome back to "the lead." we're going to take a moment for the sports lead here. the washington redskins were on a bye week but still showed the best defense, sometimes is a good offense. this time against president obama. the redskins' lawyer responded to the president after he said this in an interview with the associated press over the weekend. quote, i've got to say if i were the owner of that team and i knew that there was a name of my team even if it had a storied history that was offending a sizeable group of people, i would think about changing it, unquote. lanny davis, former special counsel to president clinton responded on the team's behalf by saying the name is meant as an honor, not disparagement. nfl owners are here in d.c. today for their fall meetings but the league reportedly passed on a sit-down with a native american group that is leading the charge to change the name. the two sides are scheduled to
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meet in late november. joining me now is ray halbrenner, an indian nation representative and vocal leader against the redskins name. sir, thanks so much for being here. first, your reaction to president obama's words about possibly changing the name, if he were the owner. >> well, we were certainly gratified with the president's comments that if he were the owner of the team, he would consider changing its name. i think it certainly adds momentum to this issue and is the first sitting president to take on that issue. i think it's certainly something that is significant and historic. we are also gratified to your senior congressman, republican congressman, as well, who also voiced his opposition to the team name as well. >> redskins owner dan snyder was once quoted as saying quote, we will never change the name, it's that simple, never, you can use caps and according to the "washington post" roger goodell is under no pressure to press for a name change. do you think this is ever going to happen? >> well, history is littered
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with people who have vowed never to change something. slavery, immigration, women's rights. so we think one thing that's really great about this country is when many people speak out, change can happen. >> lanny davis pointed out other professional teams with native american logos and mascots, why the main focus on the redskins and not teams like the atlanta braves or cleveland indians, kansas city chiefs, chicago blackhawks? >> well, let's be clear. the name, the "r" word is defined in the dictionary is an offensive term. it's a racial slur. i think there is a broader discussion to be had about using mascots generally and the damage it does to people and their self-identity. but certainly there's no gray area on this issue. >> a study by a smithsonian institution senior linguist close to a decade ago suggested that in his view, his scholarship, the term redskin was first used by native americans to distinguish themselves from whites who were
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encroaching upon their land. does that matter to you at all if that is how the term originated? >> as we learned yesterday, there's not only broad diverse opposition, but there is many studies and scientific evidence that use of racial slurs like this creates damage in the community, including young children. this is all about the kids. this is so inspiring to us when the cooperstown kids and cooperstown baseball hall of fame is located in cooperstown, decided on their own initiative to change the "r" word of their team to another name. that gave us such inspiration. >> does it matter at all the name may have originally been used by native americans? >> regardless of what the origin is, it's creating damage right now. no matter what poll you take, the damage is being created. scientifically, that's evidence that there is damage to the image to especially young
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children. that's why this issue is so important not only to us but all of america, all of our community. >> lastly, sir, some sports writers including "sports illustrated's" peter king, they have said they are going to stop using the nickname redskins. that is a good start for you? >> well, i think it's the right thing to do. sometimes we need to do the right thing and sometimes it's not always easy. but it's very respectful. we need -- we want to see this country unified. we want the nfl to succeed. we are proud sponsors of the nfl. but we want it to not only be america's pasttime but express america's ideals as well and this name does not do that. it's divisive. it's used as hate, it was the name that was used against our people when we were forced off our lands at gunpoint. it was a name used when our children were forced out of our homes and into boarding schools. so it has a sordid history. it's time for a change and we hope, and what's great is people
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do recognize that. change will come. >> all right. sir, thank you so much for your time. >> thank you for the opportunity. that's it for "the lead." i'll be back at 11:00 p.m. eastern tonight, 8:00 p.m. pacific with a cnn special shutdown showdown. for now, i turn you over to wolf blitzer in "the situation room." happening now -- >> my suggestion to the speaker has been and will continue to be let's stop the excuses, let's take a vote in the house, let's end this shutdown right now. >> president obama says he will talk about anything with the republicans, but not until they allow a vote to reopen the government and avert what he calls catastrophic chaos by agreeing to raise the debt ceiling. the house speaker john boehner just said now's the time to start talking, but what do republicans really want to prevent the u.s. debt default? we'll have a debate between two members of congress. and from jobs to