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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  February 7, 2010 7:00am-10:00am EST

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>> president obama told democrats he will not back down from health care reform, letting members of the democratic national committee know that he will push through with his agenda despite elections in 2010. governor sarah palin tells the tea party convention in nashville that washington needs to press the reset button on
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health care. the speech was attended by hundreds who paid more than $300 and more than 200 journalists cover the speech. we will begin with sarah palin's comments last night. was your reaction. here is the phone lines -- sarah palin was in nashville last night to give the keynote address for the tea party convention. here is a little of what she had to say. >> the future of the tea party movement. you see this movement becoming part of the republican party or is it a third independent party? >> the republican party would be smart to try to absorb as much of the tea party movement as possible. this is the future of our
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country. each department is the future of politics. this is a beautiful movement because it is shaping the way politics are conducted. we have both party machines running scared because they are not knowing what we will do if we do not have tea party support. >> joining us on the phone this morning is liz sidoti, the chief national political writer for the associated press. you were there for the speech, i understand. what was the reaction? >> this is a crowd that loves sarah palin. any time she said -- said anything, they set up and cheered. she said the gop would be wise to bring the tea party into their fold. that didn't seem to get nearly the cheering than at other
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points. i think the movement is trying to figure out its own identity and whether or not to roll into the gop or not. host: did sarah palin indicate whether she should leave this movement or who should be the leader? guest: we were all waiting to hear her say something that indicated she wants to be the leader of what the movement. she went to great pains to repeatedly say that she thought there should be a leaderless movement. she said she is a part of you but she did not want to be seen as the leader. this is a natural constituency for her. host: there have been news that no one wants to be seen as
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the leader of this movement because there are political risks. why is that? guest: this is a big movement with a lot of diverse parts. there is really no one viewpoint in this viewpoint. over the last year, as they were shown on television in health care rallies and at the rally on capitol hill in september, there was some elements of it that were painted as extreme. you can i get your hands wrapped around what exactly is involved. because of that, there are political risks for both sides. host: you wrote in a recent piece what is next for the sarah palin. what where did she go from here? guest: that is what we started to see a little bit of last night. there is no indication that she is definitely running for president. what you saw last night was an effort on her part to kind of
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set herself up to perhaps run as an independent. you did not hear a lot about the republican party. she went so far as to say she apologizes for the republican party because she can i get her husband to register as a republican. if you listened carefully to her speech, there were a lot of things that said that she is a conservative and independent. it was not that she is a republican. if she runs, that could be one avenue for her. this is a person where the jury is still out on whether she is a political celebrity or is she is out there drawing of lines or if she is going to be a serious candidate who will put forth sub substantive policy proposals. host: she taped appearance for fox news sunday that will air today. she is off to campaign and other
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events. what will she be doing? guest: she is heading to texas to campaign. we have rick perry in the governor's race in texas. he has tapped into some of the tea party sentiment in texas. having sarah palin there is a big move. it says he is trying to leverage the department. host: what was the goal over all of this tea party convention? do you get a sense of that? guest: the tea party goers i found to be real people with real frustrations, many of whom felt they were not being listened to and they did not have a voice. there were not being listened to by the republicans are the democrats. the convention goers, it was a
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chance to get together with like-minded people to be more politically active. with the organizers, they are still trying to figure out what it is they are trying to do. i suspect it was trying to bring the factions of the movement to get it. i will say that the convention goers say they do not speak for everybody, all the tea party people. but, they build this as the first national convention. it is hard to make that claim that they are not trying to be the leaders of the party when you build it as a national convention. there are other coalitions that did not get involved. other two-party groups did not get involved host: i read that
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the republican national committee and the democratic national committee were not -- were invited to speak and they did not come. at least the people who put this convention together are looking at starting a packed and trying to organize for the 2010 elections. what do they hope to accomplish? guest: they say that they want to help elect a like-minded people, people who believe in limited government, who believe in restraint spending, and who believe in adhering to the constitution, among other things. they're going to identify races where there are not necessarily tea party candidates but it could be a republican or a democrat who have their own viewpoints. there are a lot of questions about this pact. where will the money come from? do they have money and will be a force in elections?
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we saw in the illinois primary last week that the candidates for governor and senator did not perform so well. there is concern on the republican side that if they do not bring the two-party into the fold, they could end up splitting the vote. this is a conservative group. two-party people reject that. the proof of what will happen will show up at the ballot box. co⌝ñhost: in the upcoming elects in 2010, which race is should we be following if we want to keep an eye on the two-party influence? guest: about any race. i am pretty amazed at how many tea party-aligned candidates or people who claim they they see the ideals of the tea party popping up. there are house races across the country where you are seeing this play out you see this at
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the senate level, as well. the big one is the florida senate gop primary. the establishment favorite was looked at as a heavyweight and the little-known state lawmaker got the support as the grass roots to the party candidate. it is a fun one to watch from a political point of view because this is one that may actually define whether or not this move and really has power. host: liz sidoti, with the associated press, thank you for your time this morning. for your phone calls and thoughts, connecticut, on the republican line. good morning. caller: i among the democrats line. host: sorry about that.
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caller: the tea party people are republicans. they really want the republican party to move for the right. none of those people will ever vote for democrat. when they say they don't know what the party is, you can really believe in that. there was as many reporters there as participants, almost. they gave this woman all this attention and the speech was third grade quality. it was painful to watch host: why do you say that? caller: the amount of generalization in her speech was like a third grader could have written but there is-- there is nothing specific there. they can to see her. it was the celebrity of harper it host: she did talk about health care reform and give examples of what she would like to see any health-care bill. she talked about energy issues. what about that?
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caller: that is the republican line and what she ran on during the election, saying stuff. host: let's hear from shelton, north carolina, the democrats' line. caller: i agree with the last caller. why has this tea party emerge? d? [unintelligible] host: we have a little trouble hearing you this morning. republican line, next. caller: good morning to you. i am calling to tell you how
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happy i am with sarah palin. i agree with her 100% on everything she says. host: what did you agree on? caller: ok, smaller government, giving the small businesses an opportunity, work for them so they can hire people. that is where the hiring is coming from. speaking out on christian values is very important and is what we were established on. host: all right, on the independent line, new mexico, good morning. caller: good morning and thank you for cspan. it was intriguing to see sarah palin represent the two-party this evening.
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she is a player. she represents a lot of the leaks that people will -- a lot of believes that people will vote for. she is in a leadership role. she is taking a leadership role we will see what happens. there are better leaders than people who talk about her beliefs in the way she did. i agree with the third grade type of situation we are involved with as far as leadership goes. host: the previous caller mentioned that governor palin mentioned smaller government. here is what she had to say. >> this week they released a $3.80 trillion federal budget. they keep borrowing and keep
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printing these dollars and they keep making us more and more beholden to foreign countries and they keep taking steps towards insolvency. what they are doing in proposing these big new programs with giant price tags, they are sticking our kids with the bill. that is immoral. that is generational theft. [applause] host: governor sarah palin at the tea party convention last night talking about smaller government. one writer writes about the familiar washington complained, cut the deficit but not that way. it says that senator shelby said he was all for slowing federal spending, he has no appetite for substantial cuts in farm programs proposed in president barack obama's new budget. the republican of missouri issued a press release lamenting that the deficit spending outline the new budget
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protested cuts in projects important to his state. a fiscal conservative and alabama about to resist reduction of state programs that would hurt back home. these republicans and other lawmakers of both parties are telling people what it is hard to control federal spending. every federal program has a constituency and every -- and even lawmakers that profess to be alarmed by rising deficit will go to the mat for money that provides jobs and benefits to their constituents. pensacola, fla., on our independent line, good morning. caller: happy super bowl day to everybody. that is where my mind is at. where was this under bush. i don't understand.
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he put everything that was not put on the books and put it on there. i]i voted for hillary. she didn't make it but i am ok with that. i'm ready for zero woman to be in there but not sarah palin. devin new orleans, -- down in new orleans, which is have the mayor's race. we are really excited. in alabama, they win in their and closed all the excellent -- electronic bingo machines where they spent all kinds of money on the casinos. they win -- they went in there and closed them.
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they trotted out the unemployment rates in pensacola the other day, 25,000 jobs were lost. 10,000 jobs of those were lost and alabama alone. host: the major race in new orleans, frustrated by term- limit measure rate-, voters elected louisiana governor mitch landrieu. caller: good morning. i enjoyed sarah palin's speech. i don't necessarily want her to be the nominee for president but i would also like to say that it is ridiculous all these democrats calling in on your independent line. i don't think they are fooling anybody. it is simple. the fight for freedom against tyrannical government which is what we have now is simple.
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either you vote for freedom or you vote for more free stuff. free stuff will cost us everything we have. we cannot allow these thugs to continue to run our nation. thank you and have a great day. host: on deficit spending, there are two pieces this morning. george will writes that a sensible bill, talking about paul ryan, a republican from wisconsin talking about his budget proposal that he put forward last week. it is called a sensible ngo pat -- gop path to solvency. it talks about so security and medicare and ryan calls about privatizing those two. also, the truth about the deficit is there. that is the lead editorial in " the new york times." the talks about the health care bill making its way through the
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senate. our independent line is next, good morning. caller: i was living in alaska and seven -- sarah palin was the mayor. through the department of children services, her brother- in-law had gone to people's houses without paperwork or court orders and taken people's children away forever. 's child was taken for no reason other than it is a baby ring. sarah palin has violated constitutional rights. look into it. host: democratic line in kansas, good morning. caller: thank you for cspan. last night, after the speech, if i have to admit that i democrat,
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i have liberal tendencies. i was listening to bob trauma on msnbc and he said he was hoping that sarah palin would become the nominee of the republican party. someone else said this scares' the dickens out of liberals. i will be honest, it's gears me because after listening to her last night, i am still left with questions. i don't know what she is about. she seems to speak in cliches. she does not explain positions. she says the old out of control spending stop very it reminded me of this -- for those of you who are old enough to remember the old andy griffith show, there was an episode where ne was running against howard spraig for the city council and and bea said it the people
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wanted that, let the people do it. i don't know what sarah palin is about. i keep hearing people scream about this, the spending tendencies have bought -- have played the obama administration. at the convention in denver prior to the 2000 election, barack obama did mention that we spend close to $1 trillion in afghanistan and iraq. he made no beans about it. he said he thought it was time we spent the money in our own country. he was elected honestly and openly by the people of the united states and i think he should be given a chance. sarah palin speaks in platitudes and cliches that i really don't know what she is about. host: the issue of governor sarah palin running in 2012, last night. let's listen in. >> i can think of two words that
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scare liberals -- president palin. [applause] >>run sarah run host: sarah palin last night when the issue was brought up whether she would run for president in 2012. we're getting your reaction to her speech last night new york, on the republican line, your next, good morning. caller: iq for allowing me to speak on c-span. i would like to comment about
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your associated press commentator. -- the reporter. i do not think she was listening to the same speech i was. she very specifically stated that she hoped the tea party movement could work with the republican party so there was no split. that is exactly what the democrats would like to see is a split. i don't think that she is about that. i think she is looking to work together. about these people calling in and ridiculing her plain talk. i think we have had enough of smooth talk. to ridiculed colloquialisms she uses and how she speaks is an indication of that the leaders and they talk about about the democratic party. barack obama, who goes overseas and says the united states is not a christian nation, he is not speaking for the majority of the american people.
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i think she did a great job. i think she is a real, kind, sincere and honest american. she is the type of american that we need to lead this country. barack obama is a very dangerous man. i think he is very, very as a tendency toward marxism and i think he has a complete the testing of the american constitution. host: here is more from sarah palin. >> especially in times of potential trouble in the future, we're not afraid to say that we do not have all the answers as fallible men and women. it would be wise of us to start seeking some divine intervention again in this country. [applause] so that we can be safe and secure and prosperous again. to have people involved in government who are not afraid to go that route, not so afraid of
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the political correctness that they have to be afraid of what the media would say if they were to proclaim their alliance and our creator. host: san diego, on the independent line, your thoughts? caller: many of us were not pleased with president bush. when it ramped up with obama, we started getting really concerned. the man that made a comment about sarah palin's speech being third grade level was inappropriate. i don't see where the people with a harvard degrees and education and all this in the nests are helping us in any way. -- eliteness are helping us in any way. i voted democrat for many years. i voted for all parties over the years. i am not strictly any party. i will vote for the person who
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takes the best care of my money. i'm not comfortable with religion being brought into it. our country was based on judeo- christian values and they are good but i feel a little bit of anger when i hear people insulting her and trying to put her down because she does not have the same education and the same speech teachers about obama and everybody has had. host: does the tea party or movement represent you? caller: i have been tutti parties, i guess so, yes. host: any desire to go to the one in nashville? caller: if i could've gotten there, i would have gone host: what about the people involved in the tea party movement, should they put their money toward electing the kind of candidates that they would like to see rather than putting their money toward rallies? there are several more rallies
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being organized here in d.c. and elsewhere. what do you make of that argument? would you like to see them change their strategy? caller: i am conflicted about that. the conservative in they would like to see the money go toward a candidate because that is how people get elected in this country is with money. unfortunately, if you don't have enough money, you cannot get in office. it is all about money. unfortunately, my conservative values say we need to put that money toward some person to get them in office because if we don't, we will not get anywhere. this country, unfortunately, our electoral process has gone to be about money. and people that have harvard degrees and lawyers have gotten us nowhere. host: on the democratic line,
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alabama, good morning. caller: good morning and thank you. this is the first time i have called. i watch your show every sunday morning. i watched sarah palin at the tea party. this is a movement that compares obama to hitler. çóa few callers ago, you had soe guy say that obama light marks. x. this is ridiculous. she gave a lot of generalizations last night in her speech. she gave absolutely no specifics. she talked about helping small business so they can hire again. she did not give any specific ways that we can cut or anything. meanwhile, obama is trying to get a federal budget passed that
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has small business tax cuts in it. she said we need to have a foreign policy where we will then they lose. that is not foreign policy. what she showed last night is that generalizations, she does not deal in issues grade she does not understand the issues. she really doesn't understand. she talked a lot about keeping america said but what she was talking about -- this will only bring more islamic threat against us. and host: all right. sarah palin talked about terrorism last night. she talked about the threat of terrorism at the convention. here is what she had to say. >> treating this like a law
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enforcement matter places our country and great risk because that is not how radical islamic extremists look at this. they know we are at war. to win the war, we need a commander in chief, not a professor of law standing at the lectern. [applause] guesthost: republican line, youe next. caller: people are missing the point. when the call this a tea party movement, we are putting it in a different spectrum. what it really is is a check and balance movement. i hope it stays that way. that is one reason why both democratic and republican politicians are so fearful of it. it expresses the public discontent with their actions. xdi would also like to set that the comments about it being a great speech is wrong. she was not there to make policy.
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she was there to in the gritty movement. her speech certainly did that. she is a very exciting personality. it was a great joy to see a public figure not use a teleprompter and be able to speak from a speech that was written in front of her. her ideas and her message was very simple. unfortunately, in today's environment where politicians use big words and confuse the ideas with rhetoric, the woman speaks the simple truth and i hope that everybody hears it. host: let me ask you about the 2010 elections and the republican primaries. she said that primaries are not civil war for their beautiful things. they add she advocated that republicans challenge each other in primaries. do you agree with that? caller: certainly, ideas should
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challenge themselves. when we get into the personality battles that we often see in politics, america loses. it is theñrxd idea and i think a good discussion of the idea and principles of a party platform, whether it is republican or democrat, are a good thing to have. host:" the wall street journal" has this piece. there is a chart that shows the 1954 control of the house of representatives which changed hands twice. in 2006, democrats won control with 40 newly elected and many of them never held political office. republicans in 1994, won the house with newly elected members of which 40 have never held political office before. new york, on our independent
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line, good morning. caller: thank you for having me on. i would like to remind this nation that it was built by immigrants. i am myself an immigrant. i came here in 1960. i want to become a citizen and be able to put in my first vote. government here is totally broken for the republicans are constantly, definitely, are against everything and anything and you cannot put a vote through. my biggest problem is how very quickly before that when president bush said that god spoke to him. i am very sorry. the constitution distinctly talks about the separation of church and state.
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president obama has gone over to europe because the system was broken there. they are not liking america because when president bush started a war with iraq, there was no al qaeda. my daughter was involved in an al qaeda an explosion in pakistan in 2008. there was no al qaeda in iraq. or to the war. we did not finish a war that should have been finished which was afghanistan. host: democratic line, va., good morning. caller: i would like to say that it is kind of funny how the guy f. sarah palin about our running for president.
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50 party is a republican party. there is no doubt about that. -- the tea party is the republican party. it is looking for the white avoca and people who do not want a black president. host: the piece that i read a little bit from about the gop with no experience be no problem, talking about having fresh faces run in the 2010 election for the house. the peace said the strategy could help republicans tap into enthusiasm generated among tea party groups. this has sprung from the right but they remain antagonistic toward the gop establishment for the movement rose as the backlash towards wall street and all those in this -- auto industry. the piece is getting at that republicans to -- could take over the house in 2010 by
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tapping into this tea party movement. caller: i don't think that is really feasible to say. i feel like you can go through the research but i would like to say that midterm is far from right now. from right now, the american people will sit back and see what is going on for the average american does not set back and watch c-span to see obstructionism tactics that the republicans pull off. barack obama will bring the heat this summer and analyze what the democrats need to run under they have a working harder than anyone in america. the republicans both of them down. this will be a surprising year which will cause 2011 to be a sweeping bills year. host: republican line from michigan, you are next. caller: the call before me sounds like he is living in a fantasy world.
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sarah palin is not a republican. she is not a democrat. she is just leading a group of people that are protesting the behavior of both parties in washington. it is not just one but both of them. the latest thing that came out when the white house openly came out and called the pope as much as evil and a bad influence the two americans, it just reaffirmed my belief that mr. obama is not a friend of the catholic faith, especially since he went to that church where reverend wright constantly condemned catholics and jews. sarah palin and the two-party are a protest against washington. host: here is the department of
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what if section in "the washington post." members of both parties were criticizing the cornhuskers kickback as it came to be known, talking about health care legislation and a provision for senator ben nelson. that is not change that can be believed in, said senator lindsey graham. that was not changed. it was the type of deal was also senate itself. back in the summer of 77, the founders debated -- back in the summer of 1787, the founders debated this. they called for a single house and in july the compromised for the two houses. the great compromise was intended to make sure that the big states did not travel little guys. with 37 more states today campbell once wielded
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disproportionate power grid have of the population of the nation lives in 10 states which have 20 senators for the other half live in 40 states that have 80 senators. small states and states whose representatives might tip the balance on a key vote make out like bandits as their senators demand outside of preparations in return for their support for the nelson fracas was nothing more than a system designed how it was supposed to work. texas, on the independent line, good morning. caller: you are doing a good job up there. i would like to say something about sarah palin and the tea party. the tea party people are being missed judged by a lot of these critics. most people in the tea party are just common folks and they are simple people, like sarah palin
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said. they think and simple ways and they know that was going on in washington is wrong. they want to change they are not for one party or another. there just for getting things right. host: the republican line in louisiana, good morning. caller: i thought sarah palin had a wonderful speech last night. the only reason the critics are condemning the two-party is they are afraid. plain and simple. they know what is coming. they just tried to denigrate everybody that is against them.
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as far as blaming bush about everything, if people would stop and listen, the obama and the acorn group are the ones who have caused the burst in the housing industry. it was not bush. it was not the republicans. it was obama and a corn. host: president barack obama talked about health care yesterday when he gave a 22- minute speech before the democratic national committee which is meeting in washington over this weekend. here is what he had to say. >> here is the thing, democrats -- if we walk away, we know what will happen. we know that premiums and out- of-pocket expenses will skyrocket this decade and a decade after that and a decade after that just as they did in the past decade. more small businesses will be without coverage as, more businesses cannot compete
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internationally, more workers will take home less pay and fewer races. we know that millions more americans will lose their coverage. we know that our deficit will continue to grow because health- care costs are the single biggest driver. in case there is any confusion out there, let me be clear, i am not going to walk away from health insurance reform [applause] i will not walk away from the american people, i will not walk away on this challenge for any challenge we are moving forward. host: president obama yesterday before the democratic national committee on health care. governor sarah palin before the tea party goers at the convention in nashville also talked of health care. here is what she had to separatsay. >> remember the red reset button?
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we should ask for that back and send it to congress for health care. we should say to start all over on this health care scheme. they should pass meaningful, market-based reforms that incorporate some simple steps that have broad support for it the best idea is not bathroom deals but ideas like insurance purchases across state lines and tort reform. [applause] host: we have a few more minutes left to get your reaction to sarah palin's speech. democratic line, good morning. caller: i thought that her discussion of the specific issues that she did discuss have a lot of common ground with the things that barack obama has proposed with regard to health care, she said we needed to have competition across state lines. that is embedded in the bill was passed by the senate. i agree with their which is not in the bill, that we should have tort reform.
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the other thing she talked about was energy. one thing that has been recently proposed by president obama in the state of the union is all the above. however, one thing he wants to focus on its investment in clean energy. that is one of the most pragmatic things i heard him say in the state of the union was that whether we believe in climate change or not and the jury is out for me on that, it is not a big issue for me, but one of the things he said which is pragmatic is that all of the marquette's internationally are looking for clean energy. chinaçó is driving toward investments in that. germany, spain, are leading in that area. if we do not move into those new technologies, we will not have the international markets we're looking for. with regard to the deficit, i was surprised that the tea party did not support what was a ronald reagan approach, i believe, or maybe it was george
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h. w. bush proposal to close the army bases where we had a bipartisan commission with statutory authority to spending -- looking to cut spending in the bill. everyone agrees, democrat and republican, that social security and medicare are the things that will drive the deficit. we have to take a look at how to handle that does it in a way that does not allow people to play politics with it. it worked for the base-closing situation and i believe it could work for the deficit situation. however, republicans who co- sponsored the bill chose not to vote for because they are not concerned with deficits. they are concerned with political one upmanship. if we're concerned about the deficit and concern about a 21st century economy, we would support the statutory commission. we would support the all of the above with research and development. host: the previous caller mentioned it was super bowl
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sunday to debris the white house is hosting the super bowl party for lawmakers, a cabinet members, and service members injured in iraq and afghanistan and their families. eric holder will be there and christopher dodd and kathleen sebelius, also on the guest list below and republican to have voted in favor of the health care overhaul. last fall, ohio, on the republican line. caller: good morning. i am always amazed that the democrats are talking about those in office who have no experience. obama sure doesn't. i don't think the majority of the people in the united states are selfish. most people will not back him. that is all i have to say. host: if you were following the space shuttle, the launch of that, it says on the wire this
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morning that the crowds have forced the shuttle launch delays. they will try on monday morning. that does it for our first 45 minutes this morning on sarah palin's speech. coming up next, we will talk with two reporters about the congressional agenda going forward. and what is next. we will talk about the tea party's influence on all of that. first, a look at what's ahead on the sunday shows. >> topics include the national tea party convention and other public issues. the economy, iraq, pakistan, and the super bowl. the guests on nbc "meet the press" are john brennan, the top counter-terrorism adviser, former treasury secretary henry paulson and former fed chairman alan greenspan. on abc, jake tapper is the guest
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host. they will talk with treasury secretary tim geithner, as well. guests include the sarah palin. cbs will be broadcast from the sun life stadium which is the site of super bowl xliv. cnn will have a new post and will include secretary of state hillary clinton as the guest. you can listen to all five of the sunday morning talk shows starting at noon eastern on cspan radio. 90.1 fm here on -- here in washington, d.c. and on the web. you can follow is on facebook and twitter. >> in depth welcomes a british historian and former adviser to
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margaret thatcher, paul johnson. his latest book is on winston churchill. join our 3 our conversation with your phone calls live from london today at noon, eastern. >> it is easy to complain about the issues and the politicians. they have tried to be entertaining, informative, and relevant. >> progress of talk radio host and author of 30 books, tom hartman is our guest on q&a? . the proposed merger of comcast and nbc's less universal. -- comcast and nbc/universal. >> "washington journal" continues.
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host: we're joined this morning by our two guests. and what is on tap for the congressional agenda next week? guest: jobs first, just second, jobs third, health care, i don't know. what they are trying to do in the senate is that the jobs bill gets passed before they head out of town on recess. i am curious if the weather will put a crimp in those plants simply because members of congress have to get back into town to get to work so they can get things done it is unclear given that d.c. does not function that great when they are digging out of a record snowfall. what democrats in congress want to get done and show the american people is that they are attuned to the unemployment rate. they want to have jobs created. host: what do the legislative proposals look like for jobs? guest: we don't really know. there is a lot of behind-the- scenes arguing among democratic
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leaders with what should be in a jobs package. in the state of the union, the spresident ask for targeted tx cuts. democrats would like to get some of those things in there. you also have concerns about the overall cost of a jobs bill. basically, it is part of an economic bill by another name. is it easier to pass several smaller jobs bills? there is one bill for a payroll tax holiday which is sponsored by charles schumer and orrin hatch. if you do something that is small and targe(m", you might get more support on both sides. then you have a lot of people that say we need to -- we need to do something large that shows people we need -- we understand
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the depth of the problem. we need to have a lot of government funding in there for infrastructure and public sector jobs and things like that. they are trying to figure out how to proceed. several smaller bills or fewer larger bills. host: reid wilson, are republicans feeling the pressure to agree to something on jobs? guest: i have not seen any evidence that they feel any pressure to do anything but hammer democrats. they really have no reason to agree. they have no reason to make a compromise or make an effort and give a bunch of their priorities in order to vote for a package. host: if democrats put forward tax cuts for business says, a payroll tax cut, things that sound or have been proposed by republicans in the past and republicans do not support the sort of thing, to the risk
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paying the price in 2010? guest: that is the benefit of the approach that if they do put up a tax bill, they will get a lot of bipartisan support. if the democrats put up a tax bill on one hand and a spending package on the other, republicans will vote for 1 against the other. we have seen a few republicans voting for some of these bills but the number is very small. hopefully, we will seek some kind of solution. host: you are watching the races that are happening outside of washington and listening to these candidates who are running against incumbents and what they are saying. are they saying not to agree with democrats when it comes to jobs?
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guest: we are seeing republican candidates or rail against public spending. even people who supported the spending bill, they are very much against any more government spending. the tea party folks who are really angry and vocal now are angry and vocal about spending. that will be the crux of the republican argument. host: health care is also an issue that sarah palin brought up yesterday in her speech to the tea party convention. president barack obama at the democratic national committee yesterday said he is pushing forward with it. if not this week, then when might they tackle health care again? guest: if the democrats are going to do it, it will happen sometime over the next four-six weeks at the most part of they do not want to head deep into the spring with health-care hanging out there as an issue, whether it is an issue that passes or will not pass. they either want to pass it or
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sudley admitted it is dead. look for action in the next few weeks and if you see no action, i would assume it is gone. right now, they are trying to have it both ways. you have democrats in congress who are working behind the scenes to try and figure out a way forward given the new math where republicans have 41 seats and can sustain a filibuster the fact that nancy pelosi is not honest that she does not have 218 votes for the senate bill that passed in december. you also have a president who says he wants it and this is continuing to push for it but is not offering a specific path for that he would like democratic leaders on the hill to pursue. he is not saying what he wants and how he wants it done host: what options do they have? guest: they can clear the senate bill back in december and send it to the president.
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house democrats simply don't like the bill. if you told the democrats in the senate have voted for the bill, they will tell you that they still support the bill they voted for. they would love to see the senate bill passed but it will manhattan because house democrats do not like the bill. they can also pursue reconciliation strategy by trying to avoid a filibuster which requires 60 votes to pass something with 51 votes. you have to have the house passed the senate bill, passed a sidecar package of things the house would like to see added to the senate bill, and then that package would head to the senate where you ran up 51 democratic votes. the problem with that, it sounds like ikea offer you a strategy that has a problem, but legitimately, there is a scenario where republicans find a way to raise points of order with a sidecar package that house democrats would require an getting around those points of
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order would require 60 votes. you could end up like groundhog day where you think you have a way to get around the reconciliation and you end up needing to overcome a filibuster to oppose a 51-boat builder and they are trying to figure out if they can do a 51- voter bill. host: sarah palin said last night that washington needs to hit the reset button on health care. is that a similar sentiment you are finding in congressional races? guest: absolutely, republicans want that. democrats don't want to talk about this. democrats are done with this bill and if they had their choice, we would not be having this conversation. health care only hurts democrats politically. republicans want to talk about the want to talk about hitting the reset button.
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they want to talk about eliminating the pre-existing conditions and allowing insurance to be sold across state lines. the love to talk about tort reform, something that will not pass easily in a democrat- controlled congress. democrats are done with this bill and i want to talk above jobs, jobs, jobs. it surprised me a lot that the president went to the dnc and talk about health care a lot and said we will not stop this fight. his political wing sent out an e-mail to all their supporters and said to bring this up again this is not something that is politically beneficial to democrats. host: we spoke to president barack obama's senior advisor which will air at 10:00 this morning. here is what he had to say on the issue of jobs and a provision for payroll tax.
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guest: center schumer and senator hatch have proposed a payroll tax holiday which will put some dollars in people's pockets right away. guest: we have discussed a similar ideas. the notion is that we are on the cost of hiring going -- growing in this country. you have seen productivity at record highs and people are hiring large numbers of temporary workers and that is generally a privilege to hiring. if you give people added incentive maybe this will encourage them to do this now. we are receptive to that. . .
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it's still at 9.7 or whatever it will be in november. it's going to be impossible for
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the unemployment rate to come down meaningfully down by november. >> we're talking about the congressional agenda and politics and policy. our guests are saying jobs, jobs, jobs. new york city. caller: good morning, everyone. i just wanted to bring up two issues and i really would like to hear the comments of both the editors. i really enjoy your writing. first, really quick. mr. wilson, i don't understand how it's a problem for democrats. i understand not one job loss, it's not good. but you're talking about 20,000 jobs lost. but when obama first came in it was 700,000 jobs lost in the first month. so i really want to understand why this is bad for democrats. also, i want to mention that, please, i would like to hear
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you talk about this. i'm not trying to bring up -- i know it's the quote/unquote race card. but my problem is diversety in the parties. i enjoy being a democrat because i believe the democrats represent america. which is all races, all religions. but i think it's kind of fshfsh if everybody -- if everybody opens their eyes -- the problem is the tea party people and the republicans other than michael stee steel, they're all white. that's the problem. forget about everything else. there's a problem when you have a party, the tea party people and the republicans and they're all white. i don't even -- i even personally agree with a lot of the thing that is the republicans say but there's no way i'm going all white. host: i think we got your points. ifrpbltsdz let's talk about the
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jobs point. she's absolutely right. the first month president obama was in office, americans lost 700,000 jobs. you can't blame president obama for that. that was the previous administration's economic policies. most voters agree that president bush did get us into the economic mess that we're into today. however, it's now president obama's problem to solve and he has not solved that problem. congressional democrats have not solved that problem. that's why democrats are facing big problems here on the economic pro-front. host: before we get to that second point, we had representative chris van hollen on this show a couple weeks ago, he is the assistant to the speaker. he heads up the effort on the the house side to reelect democrats to the house. and he was saying, when squd if president obama should bring up president bush in the state of the union, he said, well, yes,
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because we have to remember that republicans were in control and do we really want to go back to before 2006 when republicans were in control and president bush was in the administration. and so it soundsed like that was going to be a talking point for democrats running. that they're going to say look back to before we took over guest: with all due respect to chris van hollen, who i think is one of the smartest members of congress, it's a losing strategy and it will not work. democrats crom everything in washington and americans understand that. and when the majority party blames the minority party, people think to themselves, why are you guys in charge if 41 republican senators can stymie a what 59 democratic starts want. or if 178 house republicans can stop 257 or 258 democrats from working their will. why bother with you guys? the other problem looking back
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creates is that americans really don't care who was in charge before. nobody likes president bush. still. they believe that he got the country into many of the challenges that it now faces. but that's why they voted for barack obama and more democrats. so what they're thinking to themselves is, i know the other guy was lousy. that's why i voted for you. and now you're telling me that you can't get anything done and eeths the other guy's fault who has now been gone for over a year. it's a losing strategy. >> when you say things like americans, they, are you talking about democrats and republicans or independents? guest: it's across the board. we've seen republicans riled up now because of president obama and the democrats control washington. we've seen independent voters swing away from democrats in elections from new jersey to virginia to the massachusetts special election. even in large part to special
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elections around the country. republicans to their credit have done quite well in places where democrats do well. they elected two still council members in alexandria, virginia. that seems small beans but that's a liberal town to be electing republicans. and democrat voters are depressed. they don't like what they've seen because a lot of priorities have not advanced. we're still talking about repealing don't ask, don't tell. >> it can decrease intensity. democrats are going to think to themselves, i control the house, i control the senate, i control the white house. but what did get for it? their expectations may be unreasonable. but that's what the voters think. >> sarle last night for the tea -- sara palin last night had a
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little fun on president obama's hope and change theme. >> remember our administration promised that it would be good stewards of taxpayer dollars. remember? remember vice president biden. he was put in charge of a tough, unprecedented oversight effort. that was how it was introduced. you know why? because nobody messes with joe. [applause] now, this was all part of that hope and change and transparency. and now a year later, identify got to ask those supporters, how does that hopey changey stuff working out for you? host: do you perceive that that may be in 2010 that candidates are running against president obama? guest: they will run against president obama's policies. republicans are very conscious
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that americans still like president obama. his approval rating may be falling by his favorable rating is very high. and by the way, every time anybody runs against president obama, they're accused of playing the race card. so in order to avoid the race card stigma, in order to avoid attacking people, they'll take on his polls yiss. and that's harry reid and nancy pelosi. they're going to become the number one targets that republicans face, republicans are talking about. because nobody wants to atit can the guy that everybody likes. so they'll attack the san francisco liberal who is the speaker of the house and liberal hairy reed. >> the searchlight liberal. his lynn rals in may be ableef debatable. but he is shepherding the agenda through the senate. it also helps that he himself is on the ballot and is facing very bad poll numbers.
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host: let's go back to the phone lines. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i have a question, and i'll take my answer off the air, if you will. thank you very much for talking to me. i'm a retired business man, and i am quite knowledgeable in economics. all of these intellectual politicians, all these intellectual politicians in washington have college degrees and then some. why don't thai know basic economics? 101. the problem with jobs is demand. there is no demand out there because people do not have the money to spend. so why put the money into businesses when the money should be going into the pockets of the people? flt people have the money and
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they will spend, businesses will delive. and businesses thrive, they will hire more people to produce product. host: anything in job legislation in either the house or the senate that is for somebody out there who is unemployed like our caller was talking about? caller: i haven't seen yet every it ration of the jobs packages that are floating. i would say in response to the caller's comments that when it comes to economic philosophy among the two parties in washington, republicans tend to look at the economy as something that needs to stimulate the demand of a buyer. and that usually in their view takes the form of an across the board tax cut both for businesses and for individuals. and the democratic party usually looks at that as something that ends up funneling a lot of tax dollars
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to the wealthy, so called, and what they like to do is create bills that are targeted for a special purpose. and so i don't think we're likely to see the kind of bill that would make this caller happy simply because it goes against democratic philosophy. and when they're talking politically about what they're trying to do, you basically hear the talking points of tax cuts for the wealthy in that we tried that for eight years. we had across the board tax cuts. all of this money went to the wealthy. what we want to do is redirect the money for the middle class which they have defined as anybody who is making $200,000 a year or less or families making $250,000 a year or less. and any tax cuts forward are going to be targeted. and take a look at the president's state of the union address. he talked about tax cuts for the employer if you hire. as opposed to a broad section of the population in order to
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try to stimulate demand. i'm not passing judgment on what the president wants to see happen with the tax cuts. but philosophically what he wants to see i don't think you'll get out of a democratic congressman or president. caller: host: ron, on the democrat's line. go ahead. caller: all right. i have a question, comments, two of them. two major points. an earlier talking point concerned voting for and voting against bills. in our congress. what i never hear from any political pundit anywhere is why people would not vote for a particular bill even though on the surface it seemed like the
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bill would do good thing force the country. ie, the stimulus bill. even if the stimulus bill had good points in it that could have done something for the country, it was loaded with so much pork such as crossings in flay, airport expansion for three planes a day. why can't some of the people in the press, the political pundits, instead of just saying, oh, they're obstructing this move, why can't they point out perhaps there was a no vote. that's the first point. the second point is the economy. the government does not produce anything. therefore, they cannot create jobs. the only thing that they can do is to present an environment for people who do produce.
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and that environment demands that the people who produce have to know the rules and have reasonable expectation of what that rules are going to be in the future. so if our wonderful elected politicians could figure out this very simple, very simple economic rule, they could create an environment simply by guaranteing that the e.p.a. isn't going to cost them $10 million to bring in a new product. the federal government isn't going to tax them so much that they scant -- can't afford to produce a new product and hire new people. guest: i think the bill you're likely to see coming out of congress, david will be the expert, is going to include a number of projects that the government funds that will create jobs. things like airport expansions,
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things like sky harbor international airport in phoenix was one of the huge beneficiaries of the stimulus bill. arizona has lost a number of jobs but those sort of infrastructure projects are the things that do create jobs. as to why we can't talk about reason for voting, i think we do. i think we get to hear on the sunday shows every day on shows like this why republican members of congress oppose the stimulus bill, why they oppose the health care bill, why democrats oppose various initiatives from republicans. so i think there are plenty of reasons and there are plenty of reasons to be for and against any of these things. the fralk projects that we're going to see is another point of contension that i'm sure republicans will have plenty of tuvente to explain why they're against. host: go ahead. caller: good morning. my first, i want to make a
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two-point question here. the first is to the two gentlemen. while you two are covering the tea party gathering in nashville, did you run across any attendees of color? and the second point i want to make is that i will concede the point that i believe the obama administration probably does need to put out of its mind the previous administration and all of its failures. and focus on what's ahead of us right now. and i believe that means president obama needs to plant his feet firmly and not be moved and not be fearful. because the truth of the matter is somebody is going to be displeased at some point. so i think that he needs to say to the republicans, look, we are going to move forward because we are the party in control and we are going to try and do things our way while trying to implement some of the ideas of yours that we think
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will be most helpful to what we are trying to do. host: i don't think either of you covered the tea party because you're here. but it does bring up the diversety question that a previous qualer brought up. do you want to address this? guest: diversety question is always interesting in looking at what drives voters. i would kind of step back from the tea party convention, though, and look at things this way for some context. in 2006, particularly in 2006 in that election, you saw an incredible amount of intensity on the left among anti-war protesters and democratic voters who wanted to send republicans packing and were looking forward to 2008 when they could send president bush packing. this cycle, prausm's first mid-term cycle you're seeing the flip side. you're seeing an incredible amount of intensity on the
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right from republicans and independents lean to the right who want to send a message to the democratic congress and to the president. and i think you can look at the 2006 protests that we saw and a majority of the protestors were white. you can look at the tea party convention and a majority if not all of them are white. but the race of the protester of the tea partier is less important than where their politics are when i'm looking at how an election is going to be affected. the other point is the president should push forward and move forward undauntted and i would tell her that is what he is doing and i would say that's what right now is causing his part cri a problem. what we learned, we didn't know right away, but the american people were very unhappy with the republican congress and they liked the democrats in 2006. they were very unhappy with president bush, they elected president obama in 2008.
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but it still remains fundamentally a center right country. and i think the president's policies which you can't criticize the motivation of what he wants to do, i think are very well meaning policies, are just not the kind of policies that most people who vote support. and while i think a low unemployment rate would ameliorate some of the intensity against him, for the most part if you ask american voters by and large do they support greater government involvement in health care, just on the face of it they're going to say no. if you ask them should the government be regulating carbon emissions, for the most part if you get out of the discussions about global warming and climate change, they're probably going to say no. and so it's a challenge for the president to move a country slightly to the left when its natural ink nation remains to move slightly to the right. host: one point i would bring
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up real quick. having president obama stand strong is something that a number of democrats on capitol hill really want him to do. you mentioned chris van hollen earlier. chris van hollen and more of the party strategist types on capitol hill want president obama to stand strong, to really lay out their vision and make this election a contrast tweens what the democrats wants and what the republicans want and making something a contrast election is very difficult to do. it usually becomes a referendum on the parry that's in power or the party that holds the white house. but we've seen democrats be very quick to reevaluate their own priorities after a special election in massachusetts, after the rerepublican wins in new jersey and virginia. they are scared right now. and there are some democrats on the hill saying we shouldn't be scared. host: house speaker nancy plose
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ie earlier this year said we will sustain our majority. she didn't say by how much but she said we will sustain our majority in 2010. are they backing away from using that kind of language? guest: i don't think so. i think most democrats are still pretty confident that as you look at the national scene, it's very difficult for their party but on a district by district level, republicans are doing well. they're not doing that well. republicans need 40 seats to pick up control of congress. could be 39 afts the results of the special election in a couple of months. but still, 39 or 40, that's a lot of seats. host: in what state? guest: in hawaii. the honolulu district, he is going to resign to run for governor and there's a pretty cone ten shs special election with some pretty impressive candidates. but the democrats are going to lose seats. i think that's everybody agrees
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on that. how many is the question. and if you look, district by district, candidate by candidate, matchup by matchup, republicans don't have enough good candidates with enough support to take back those seats. host: you want to jump in. guest: i think the question is will the democrats emerge with a governing majority. the republicans could win 25, 30 seats net, pa seats net and the democrats would still own the majority, run the committees but i don't know that it would be a governing majority. and particularly in the senate where even the most back bench minority senator can wield power. if they can pick up another four or fife senate seats, it makes it much harder to push through their agenda. we've seen how difficult it was with 60 seats. host: billy, go ahead. caller: i'd like to comment on this jobs. i'm a construction worker and i work all over the united states. and i think immigration is one
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of the big problems that has put american workers out of jobs. i was in framingham, massachusetts, in 2007 and they were having to cut out or was talking about cutting out sports in their schools because they had to designate 70 teachers that were bilingual to teach all these students. you know, is taking money from our children's education is taking american jobs. they have problems on the texas and arizona, mexico border with guns and drugs and all that. isn't that the job of the national guard to protect the homefront? host: either of you? guest: i would just point out,
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in this whole health care debate, in the whole second stimulus debate, the real casualty has been immigration reform. president obama talked about wanting to bring forward a new package, congressional democrats talked about it quietly. ever over the last year. something that they were going to bring up, but in 2009. in an election year in 2010, we're not going to see an immigration reform bill. guest: reed is right. you won't necessarily see it come up in 2011 or 2012. host: we have a tweet here. can you talk about that and their reference to where there's no breaks? guest: not quite sure what the tweeter means by no breaks. but i will say this. the fill buster rule is as old as the republic. it has over the last 20 years been used more and more by both
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parties. and what i find interesting is it's always the party in power that doesn't like the fill buttser. the party out of power loves the phil buster. when they had the seats, they had activists all over talking about the nuclear action. because they were phil bustering the elections. now, 59 seats with scott brown's election, now the democrat have a healthy majority in the senate. democrats all over the country, we have to get rid of it. this is an abomination. the republicans are misusing it. and i think whether are you love or hate it, it's always been a part of the u.s. senate. it is used more often than maybe it used to be. but i also think that's because the u.s. congress is a little bit different than it used to be. for much of the 20th century,
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you had healthy democratic majorities and i only bring it up because it was just one party. it could have been a republican majority. but that majority was broken up within itself by regional factions. and so you had a bloc of really large conservative democrats that would band together to fight blocs of liberal democrats that would band together. and they would then work with the minority party where you would have conservative democrats and republicans would get together. so you had a lot more division within the parties and things were less partisan. in terms of partisan party wise. and so there was less i think i don't want to say less of a need for it, but you had legislation that ended up being filibustered less because things were handled internally first. i dovente really need to make a value judgment whether you should remove it or not. but it's not new. i only think if you eliminate
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it, then you're going to have the next party screaming we nead to bring it back. >> the scharmeharken of the health care committee has a bill to tweak with it. but he himself has said it's probably not going to go anywhere. guest: it's not going anywhere. host: detroit on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. a couple things i would like to say. first off, there is no jobs in america because we quit buying american products. you don't buy the cars. it's all the way to computer people losing jobs. now we're seeing other people lose their jobs. secondly, c-span, how come we haven't talked about the premier of health in canada running to america with heart trouble. what did he run there for? the best care there is that money can buy, of course. but this is america. and yet, unfortunately, only the strong do survive. those that get out everybody day and fight for their living.
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host: the caller brought up buy america. that's a provision that typically comes up when you're talking about jobs and the economy. it's not something that has been brought up in the discussion right now by democrats. is that something candidates are talking about or? guest: guest: we haven't heard a lot of candidates talking about it. but he's from detroit and michigan has the highest unemployment rate in the nation. when you're talking about a national recession, we've been in a national recession for a couple years. the state of michigan has been in a recession, a one-state recession for a lot longer than that. and it's because of the auto makers that have lost so many thousands of jobs. democrats are going to find -- democrats had a great year in 2008 in the, i hate to say rust belt, but the rust belt states. ohio, pennsylvania, michigan, illinois. they picked up house seats, governors, senate seats in all three of those states over the last couple of years.
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now this year, they're going to have a very difficult time in those states. they've got the governor in michigan is term limited. their lieutenant governor had to drop his bid because he was getting so little support. and democrats still don't have a candidate, here we are eight months before election date. host: and you wrote a piece about the top u.s. senate seats and on that list is illinois, pennsylvania as well as north dakota, delaware, arkansas, nevada, kentucky, colorado, new hampshire, and ohio. guest: and these are seats especially illinois and in pennsylvania, we've got two democratic senate seats, senator bury riss is retiring. ufere got congressman mark kirk, a republican from illinois who is very well respected, a centrist by any measure, somebody who voted for the cap and trade bill although he has backed off that. he has a moderate record running statewide in a state
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that gets sick of its incumbent politicians frequently. in pennsylvania you've got democratic senator articlen specter who has run for years as a republican. he just won the endorsement of the pennsylvania democratic party. both congressman joe sess tack who is a democrat challenging him from the left and former congressman pat tomby are casting him as the status quo. and this year, the worst thing you can be come november is the status quo. so he is taking fire from both sides. i think you could very well see republicans pick up both those seats. or if -- well, if by some miracle joe sestak wins the primary, i think there's a chance that arlen specter won't be back next year. host: good morning. caller: good morning. first, i had a few points so please don't cut me off. host: go ahead.
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caller: your program this morning is not balanced. how in the world are you going to have a fair dialogue if both of you guys are thinking the same way? and you're talking the same way also. my second point is the tea party does not look like america. america is a melting pot. it is never going to go back to what it used to be. it is always going to move forward. and the forwardness is the multicultural, multithinking fair and balanceness in the country. my second point is the only reason why people are crying wolf about the health care is because of the greedy rich. they're still worried about the tax rollback that president obama said in his, when he was running for president he always stated that he planned to roll back the bush cuts tax cuts.
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they knew it was coming and they're crying wolf. everything that he does, so make this country move forward, goes back to him talking about rolling back the tax cuts. host: just to let you know, our guests this morning are two reporters. they're not here to give us opinions or differing opinions. they're not from two different sides. they're here to let us know what is happening in the the house and the senate congressly, policy wise, as well as politics. and then also what's happening outside of the fway when it comes to policies and politics. guest: first, i'm insulted that i think just like reed does. clearly, i haven't performed the way i intended to. look, i understand the caller is upset and there's a lot of frustration in the country. but with all due respect to the points she made, there's simply not enough voters who are going to be affected by a roll back of the bush tax cuts to cause health care to become derailed.
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the reason health care has such a problem is because the democrats in order to gain such a large majority won a lot of republican leaning states and house districts and those members who won cognizant of their constituents had certain problems with much of the president's agenda. now, while they voted for much of it, the reason the democrats had so much trouble with heir health care bill is because of democrats all centrists from republican leaning states. and i could say the same about the house where you had a large block of blue dog conservative democrats who are now sitting in seats that were for years held by republicans,. and the other thing i would just point out is that i think the country is upsit because for much of last year while unemployment was growing until
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it finally settled at around 10%, i think the country, if you took a cross section of people who are likely to vote and that's always how i think reed looks at things and i look at things, i'm interested in voters because they're going to affect who sits in the building behind us. looking back, most voters will tell you health care reform is needed. we think it's a good idea generally. but why didn't you focus on jobs first? now, maybe congress did focus on jobs just as much as health care but people don't think they did. and so people are upset. host: here's a tweet. guest: i want to talk about the tea party. the convention has been beset by problems from the beginning. the organizer originally wanted to hold it for profit. that caused two very popular
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republican congressmen from sort of who represent the tea party movement, michelle balkman and marsha black burn to pull out. it has been criticized by former sponsors. and i think the lesson that we learned here is that the tea party is a movement that's moving in a hundred different directions. there is no one tea party group. any time anybody tries to organize all these tea party groups into one organization, somebody is going to get upset and say that's not my priority, this is my priority. the tea party folks, the leaders of the more local movement dislike republicans maybe not as much as they dislike democrats but they do not trust incumbents of either party. this is an anti-washington movement. not necessarily simply an anti republican or democrat movement. host: and one of those is deric joining us in jaffle, florida. caller: gerning. i appreciate this.
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i'm one of the independents that i guess you would call the younger group, college, who went out and voted for the change, didn't see much going on with the democrats right now. i think they're too into trying to get that one or two votes that they need from the republican side or trying to -- they never really had the 60 seats. the republicans seem to be just like everyone says, obstructionists and everything. but even more so, the tea party movement seems like a bunch of misinformed almost gullible people. because some of the things i've reader, e -- read. me and my friends i guess are the political nerds that you would see at school and a lot of us get these talking point memos from all the groups. and i just wanted to get everyone's opinion that you guys have there on, a, when are
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the democrats going to wake up and say forget the republicans. we need to do everything with the 50 or so votes we have. host: david. guest: well, i think that the democrats have been trying to do things with the votes that they have. again, i will bring up a point i just mentioned. the reason they haven't been able to get as much done as they've wanted to is because their majority is ideologically broad. when you have conservative democrat ben nelson from nebraska butting heads with a liberal senator, let's say shared brown from ohio, a democrat, it creates friction within the party. democrats do not all think alike on capitol hill. they have a governing majority but they're not an majority in idea logical lock step. so they have to figure out how to bring enough votes together for a piece of legislation. i think in retro spect what we might be able to learn from
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2009 and from the bush plrks, president bush tried immigration reform urks it failed. that you want to do things that are smaller and targeted. the democrats tried climate change reform, health care reform so far has failed. do thick that is are smaller. the prescription drug benefit bill was something smaller and targeted. it cost a lot but it was smaller and targeted and everybody could understand it. it wasn't loaded down with a lot of deals that people thought were special and potentially unseemly if not illegal. and i think that's one of the messages. and i think what the caller sees is a lot of dysfunction in washington. nobody can get everything done and everybody blames everybody else. but you tend not to see compromise in washington unless there's a political will to compromise. and as long as you have one party domination, there's no political will for the majority to do what the minority wants because they look at themselves in the mirror and they say we
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have enough votes to do what we want. the minority looks at themselves and they say why should i help the majority pass the agenda? they will look good and people will reelect them. and if you want to see compromise and legislative movement on a more regular basis you need a divided government where one party controls the white house and the other party controls at least one house of congress. host: prick on the republican line you're next. -- rick on the republican line. you're next. caller: one of the guests could just comment on them. with the i guess reed i'm sorry i didn't catch his last name. host: reed wlsen. caller: he commented on some of the programs with the infrastructure programs, the airports. i paint parking lots for a living, and a little bit of road painting and awork for a lot of road contractors. and they've got some stimulus money and they got very busy for the reason seasons and then the roads were paved and ten
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winter came and those guys are laid off until there's more stimulus money. however, with those roads being waived were great. created some quick jobs. but the average consumer had no where to go on the roads because they had no money to go shopping and vay cases and trips. so those help but i don't think it helped but more on a broad-based tax cuts and things like that would help the consumer to have some money to go out and spend. host: reed. guest: i think it's interesting to note that these infrastructure jobs and the money doesn't always last. this is a doctors 787 billion bill that was passed in early february. i think it was february 10. is that the right? somewhere around there. but there were a couple problems with it. first, that's a lot of money. and you can't get it out to the states quickly. a very large portion of that
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$787 billion has yet to be spent. it's still very trickling out very slowly to shovel ready projects. there weren't enough shovel ready projects to spend that money. so the caller said that the folks were laid off until more stimulus money came in. yeah, that's the problem. it's trickling down. it wasn't just one check that somebody wrote. host: so democratic candidates across the country running on the stimulus? guest: they dopet want to talk about the stimulus very much. they want to talk about the jobs bill. guest: the biggest problem with the stimulus bill was not the jobs it didn't create. it was the president promised the unemployment rate wouldn't go up that much. if the president had simply said this is going to help get the country back to work and stabilize the economy, it would not have been as much of a problem. but it gave the republicans and everyday voters a way to measure it and a way to measure
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that it failed. guest: what i think it really did is it gave the perception that that voters are very willing to accept of democrat spending too much, democrats come in and make government bigger and spend way too much money. that's the stereo type of democrats that they've tried to avoid for years and years. with one stroke of president obama's pen, he -- dwsh >> reclaim an issue that they had lost. >> reinvented that stereo type. one thing they are going to find very troubling and that republicans are going to pounce on it every single point, that when you have $787 billion being spebt, there is going to be wasteful spent. there will be something. and the republicans will put out press release after press release, and they will be right. host: one last phone call. pittsburgh, pat on the democrat line.
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caller: i'm glad they brought up the stimulus. when george bush was in office, we lost over 700,000, in fact at the end of his term 700,000 every month was the norm. we are down to 300,000 because the stimulus worked. and yes it moved slowly because people have to make plans to spend that money and have to get equipment together and what not. but what hurts our nation is the fact that we have 91% of the media in this country bombing obama from every angel. these two guys on your show are no different. we can't run anything without republican votes. and i understand that and everyone understands that. but when the democrats are in power, the republicans do nothing but use their talking points. you can hear them. i watch all the media.
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i'm retired. and it's damming the what's going on in this country. and george bush even said this. if you repeat something over and over again, people will believe it. and he was silly enough to admit that on air. guest: i'll just say i want to make the point if we're down to losing 20,000 jobs a month, which is of course much better than the 700,000 than were lost a year ago. the problem is not that the stimulus is working, it's that it's not working up to the level that president obama promised. he said that the unemplimt rate wouldn't go above i think 8.5%. here we are at 9.7% after having a good month in which unemployment slanchinge. so the political problem that democrats face that voters rrned the country are concerned about is that they haven't seen the progress that was promised. and you're going to see over the next couple years democrats really learning from that and
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not promising the met rirks that can then be measured that they can't necessarily meet. host: dave. guest: and i think that any president of any party always gets much more credit than they deserve when things are going well and much more blame when things are going poorly. and the way voters look at it, it's something i said before. we understand that president bush wasn't a good president. in their view. but that's why we elected you. so now go fix it. that's what we want from you. and when things turn around, if they turn around on president obama's watch, whether or not he actually deserves any credit, whether or not democrats actually deserve any credit it won't matter. they will get the credit if they are still in charge. host: before we go, just real quickly. if jobs, jobs, jocks is the issue this week for congress who should our viewers be watching in the house and the senate guest: you always want to watch the house leadership. you want to watch nancy pelosi,
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steny hoyer the majority leader, you want to watch possibly ways and means chairman charlie rangel, george miller, california democrat is speaker pelosi's sort of number one lieutenant. in the the house. in the senate you want to watch harry reid the majority leader, you want to watch dick dur bin, the majority whip. and i should have called reed the majority leader. and you want to watch buy ron dorgen and chuck shumer. look at these group of senators to see what they're saying and doing. and you might be able to read the tea leaves. host: and what should viewers be watching across the country where jobs is the big issue? guest: the states hurting the most. jobs are going to play a key role in whether or not he gets reelected in nevada. nevada has the second highest unemployment rate in the country. he faces some poll numbers that
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show him down double digits to republican candidates who nobody has even heard of. that's a terrible thing for him as he faces reelection this year. he's got a lot of money in the bank. but if jobs keep coming back to nevada, if tourists keep going to nevada he has a shot at winning. if not, he izz going to face a very tough road. host: we just talked about what's happening inside washington. coming up next on the washington journal, we're going to get a perspective of how this is all plawing out, outside of washington with andrew kline of the new hampshire leader editor and mike who is the opinions editor for the orlando sentinel. first, we want to give you a look at the past week through the eyes of a few of the nation's editorial cartoonists.
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host: andrew kline, with the new hampshire union leader, is joining us from that state. and mike with the orlando sentinel is joining us to get a perspective of how politics and policy in d.c. is playing out in your states. let me begin with mr. kline to ask about the influence of the tea party movement and/or independents in your state. guest: that's a great question for new hampshire. new hampshire is a state where independents outnumber either party by a large margin. they're the largest voting bloc. people think of new hampshire as a fiscally conservative state and it is that. but they sometimes mistakenly think of it as a purely republican die hart state.
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democrats just outnumbered republicans in registration last year. but the independents are what move votes in new hampshire. and the tea party has -- it's hard to gauge exactly how large it is because it's not something that has registrations. but there was just an event last weekend by a group called stewards for prosperity, which a local very rich man founded. and that had a lot of tea party folks at it. it had knut gingrich. not as large as the convention in nashville but it was big. there were probably a couple hundred people there total. and they're upset and they come out and they protest whenever a member of congress, we have two members of congress in new hampshire and they're both democrats, and whenever they have an event you'll see them protesting. they held a very large event last in man chester and in concord. so it's a group to be reckoned with. host: all right. guest: we've had a lot of
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rallies in our area by tea party activists, and they too have shown up at political offices. offices of politicians demanding answers. they appear to be a growing force here in florida. host: are they also writing to the editorial board of the paper and trying to make their influence known there? guest: yes. very often. we get letters to the editor frequently from people who identify with the tea party movement and they are -- they're mad. they're angry about a lot of things. and they want -- they're not shy at all about expressing their views. host: what do they want from the newspaper? guest: well, what they want is us to challenge the status quo more often, challenge incumbents. they believe that incumbents
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get a little bit of a free ride and they also want the editorial board to express views that they believe are more conservative. our editorial board we believe is quite moderate in its views. but they of course want us to take a more conservative viewpoint of things. host: mr. kline, the same questions to you. are you hearing from the tea party movement in your state, at your newspaper specifically? caller: yes. they write letters and comment on line, on our stories on line. i think it's very similar, our editorial page is a conservative editorial page so they don't seem to have the same frustrations as they would at a more moderate paper. but i think the key is they want to hear -- they want to be heard. they are frustrated. what i hear most often in the comments is that they don't feel like washington is listening to their concerns.
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and for that matter, they don't feel like concord, the state capitol in new hampshire is listening to their concerns, eedser. so you feel that frustration whether it's a let tore the editor or on their web stories. they are upset the politicians are spending too much money and going too far in debt and not listening to the concerns of people. guest: if i could add, they express a lot of frustration with the republican party, too. it's not just democrats. the tea party people identify with the tea party that we hear from are often very angry at republicans for in their belief betraying their values. host: mr. kline, if i could -- guest: i would second that. host: on jobs, when it comes to jobs, that's one issue that we hear that people don't believe washington and other state and local people are listening to them when it comes to that issue. can i get each of your perspectives on jobs?
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mr. kline, about what washington is doing on that specific issue. guest: i think there's a sense of frustration that whatever jobs programs and initiatives there are, that they're narrowly targeted. when you see in new hampshire some of the job money, stimulus money we got went to construction projects, went to put up road science saying this construction project is funded by your must be. and people got upset by that. but there's also a sense that whatever new jobs programs are coming down the line are sort of narrowly targeted and i think there's a sense that people won't broadly benefit from them. and i'm hearing a lot of frustration, why don't they just give us tax cuts. do something that's broad that helps everybody rather than targeting green jobs. if people don't work in those industries they feel left out. host: the democrats unveiled an outline for a jobs bill that
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included tax cuts for small businesses to hire as well as extending the tax cuts that president bush started for those in the middle class, lower class area. and he also talked about extending unemployment benefits as well as extending health care benefits for those that are unemployed. mr. kline, what's your viewpoint of those provisions? guest: i think the tax cut provisions are helpful. but, again, what you hear from people who are writing to us and commenting about these things is that there's frustration that the spending and the deficit spending in particular that has happened in the last year just so far outweighs any little tax cuts that they feel like the balance isn't right. that government is spending way too much money way too fast. and these little tax cuts that have been deloun in as part of
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the job package are sort of little scraps thrown out to people to for political reasons to make it look like they're cutting tatches taxes. and i think there's a great sense that washington still doesn't get it. that it's not fiscally sound in the long term to be raising the spending so high so quickly and borrowing so much money. and not balancing that out with spending cuts. and that's what a lot of people want to see. they want to see the spending brought down to a level that washington can afford it. host: mr. lafert, has your paper endorsed these job proposals put forward by democrats? guest: we've not yet. it's a little early for us. we haven't weighed in on it yet. we will, i'm sure. but unemployment, the jobs issue in florida is a really big issue for us. the unemployment rate in
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december, which is the latest figures that we have for our state, was just under 12%. and most economists around here believe it will go over 12%. florida's been particularly hard hit by the loss of construction jobs when the housing bubble burst, tourism has been down, hotels are not getting nearly as many people. so they are having to lay off their workers. we have a big problem with -- in fact, the unemployment rate if you counted the people who are underemployed or stop looking for a job is probably closer to 20% here in florida. but interestingly, we hear more on our editorial board from readers about the issue that drew mentioned, and that is this deep concern over the deficit. which is also something our editorial board has weighed in
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on numerous times, is the concerns about the long range problems with the deficit. now, as far as the stimulus spending goes, florida just got a little over $1 billion to begin work on a high-speed rail system between orlando and tampa. this was seen by some people as a positive development. but we also heard from readers who believe that this is an example of washington spending money that it just doesn't have. host: the orlando sentinel editorial on february 3 had the headline, if president obama won't heed his own warnings, congress must. what did you mean by that? >> what we were commenting on was the president's budget proposal. and the deficit of well over $1 trillion. if you look at that line, it doesn't get a whole lot better in subsequent years. and we believe that the
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administration needs to spend more time and more effort looking for ways to reduce the deficit. and what we are saying is that if president obama won't do it in his budget, we believe that congress has to get serious about addressing the deficit issue. because even if you look at the interest payments that the united states is now making on its debt, those interest payments are just going to go through the roof in the coming years. . .
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caller: i don't think the american people give president obama a chance. i'm 50 years old. i have never seen a president treated the way he's been
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treated after a year. they didn't even give him a year . host: what do you make of those comments? guest: i think he makes a very good point. even though the editorial we wrote was critical of the budget, we also recently wrote an editorial of the president's first year. it gave him credit for several things, including we felt dealing with the economic crisis when it was at its worse. we backed the stimulus planning. we worried it contained too much pork. but i think the caller has a point that the president faces a type of opposition it's hard to get your arms around. in the view of some, he can't, no matter what he does, it is going to be wrong.
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we've noted that in our editorials before that it is a little early to say just how well this president is going to do. it is one year into a four-year term. host: your paper first endorsed hillary clinton and john mccain in the primaries. you then later switched to endorsing president obama and saying in that editorial that if mr. obama wants to fulfill his promise as a leader that prizes above a partisan agenda, he will need to strike a moderate course. has he dus done that in this first year? guest: well, we have been a little disappointed as i believe some of your previous guests have said. we are of the mind that the president's mind has overreached and tried to accomplish goals that were too much in his first year, especially given the state
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of the economy. so we wanted the president to move toward the center more. we think the president still could move toward the center more, but having said that, we also do believe that the president is fairly sincere about trying to change bipartisanship, it just hasn't happened yet. host: cindy in flawed daily -- fort lawed daily -- fort lauderdale. caller: hello fpble -- because of the mileage span, it seems because of 187-mile drive from south florida to orlando would make more sense to start with that rail system, versus tampa, which is 70 miles. secondly, my other question is regarding benefit plans. the question -- government is so
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intent on taxing high-value health insurance plans for the rich. i mean, if you can afford to have a health insurance plan, that should be their right and privilege to do so. what we don't hear is the millions and millions of government workers that are getting pension plans, probably top-dollar health insurance plans, and we never hear of cuts with them. i work in the construction industry, which is i'm fortunate to have a job, and the only benefit i have right now is a health insurance plan, which i'm thankful for. i've had to change plans. i've lost a dental plan and a vision plan and a number of other plans, but we never hear anything about revamping the government. that's about it. host: mr. kline, i'm going to have you take the health care comment. >> i think that's a concern we hear a lot here at the paper. peep are losing their jobs, they
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are losing their health insurance. you know, in new hampshire we have quite generous health benefits for government employees. we have a pension plan for government employees that is woefuly under-funded at the moment. those things have to be under control. there is an idea that benefits for unionized government employees is more benefit than most people get. if government spending is going to be brought in line, that has to be addressed. mccain talked about the -- you know, his proposal wants to even the playing field, so that employer-provided health insurance had the same tax that you could buy on yourñi ow obama attacked that saying it was a tax increase on your healthñi benefits. then obama comes to endorse something a littleñi different, which is simplyñr taxing high -
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what they call cadillac health insuranceñr plans, high benefit plans.çó which,çó you know, is another st of skew of the market rather than trying to treat them both fairly. if i could just address the rail point, we have an angle on that in new hampshire. we had a proposal for a $300 billion rail line here in new hampshire, and they wanted to get funding for it, and it didn't happen. we were very thankful that it didn't happen.çó weçó editorialized against it p would have cost theñr taxpayersn new hampshire untold millions to run it every year. that wasn't covered by federal money.ñiçó host: donald on the independent line in missouri. caller: i would likeñi to have i gentlemen respond to a simple question i have. we have not been very good
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stewards of our congress. they have either been inevent or corrupt or we would not have been in this situation. there can be no other answer. some people identify themselves as republicans or democrats and vote strictly down party lines, which allows this p the inevent or corrupt people to be in there. which are we, gentlemen? do we have corrupt congress or an inevent congress? thank you. guest: i don't know why you have to pick one. host: mr. cline, you go ahead. do you want to espouse on that? guest: i thought=/%çó it was a dichotomy. why would you have to chooseñr ñie1 you have both?çóxd caller: i think thereñi can be
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guest: i think there can be both.stáhe interestinbpáhing ab we got into thisçó situation, y have one side that said there was too much regulation,ñi and e other side saidñr tooçó littleñ regulation. i'm talking about banks and the+ financiali industry. the inevent tudeñiçó isçó -- th ineptitude seems to be in the eye of the beholder.ñi coming up or in the elections coming up in your state that there could be a situation where the incumbents running are thrown out, no matter what theì+ party is?ñiçóñiçóñiçó guest: yes. i would like to talk about añr race getting a lot of attention in florida. it is the republican primaryçó r the u.s. senate between the sittingñi governor, charlieçóçó,
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andñiñi the former speaker of t florida house,ñiñi azco rubio. early on he appeared to be bulletproof. he wasñr ahead in the polls by 30-something points. he's been popular since taking office in 2006. the latest poll shows that mr. rubio is now leading the incumbent governor of florida -i florida -- in that race. it has been a real turn-around. there is some belief, and i think there is truth to it, that some of that at least is due to anti-incumbent sentiment. host: mr. cline? guest: i think in new hampshire you see a small pro-newcomer
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mentality. but what i seem to be picking up on, and the poll data show this, is a strong anti-democrat sentiment now. we have, for example, paul hogan, second district of congress here is running for senate. we have a former attoxne4($(lc@+ general who has never run for officeñr before. she's fairly well known -- she's a fairly well known republican, but you have to followçó law enforcement stuff to know who she has now won in eight straight polls. obama's approval rate isñr belo 54% approval rating in new hampshire, and there is açó lar ar that'sñi partl national reasons and partly for a lot of spending decisions they made and otherç'tt(rárjju in iñi ths#i in the fallñi we'rew3ó  even admit that. the two words you hear most
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often from democrats in the last few weeks are "nervous," and they say it is a "challenging" environment for them. host: go ahead, caller. caller: yes. you know, we pay to send five million jobs out of the country. we pay the unemployment, we pay the welfare, and are we actually getting a cheaper product zph -- product? you know, you-all never talk about this. government, we doing these things and then we're acting surprised that we have high unemployment? can you explain the economics of this? host: mr. cline, why don't you
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take that one. >> i don't think companies get much of a tax break for taking jobs out of the country. one of the reasons you see -- export jobs is a complex thing. i don't think you can tie unemployment to off-shoring jobs. the economy is bad, and that's why you are seeing unemployment so low. we also have one of the highest -- i think it is the second highest corporate income tax rates in the world. when companies are punished in that way, they are going to look for other places to do business. i think one of the things the u.s. government has to do is try to make manufacturing and all other employment more attractive. you know, here in the united states. host: one of our viewers on at which weighed in and said incumbency equals
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complacency. all politicians are concerned about is the next clex election while the big issues go unaddressed." >> i would like to make aw3 comment. i would like to analogize scott brown a little bit. commentateors, politicians, talk about federal money. what is federal money? it is not federal money. it is the people's money. so quit saying federal money. it isn't federal money. it is the people's money. host: anything to add there on the scott brown factor? guest: i can tell you after his election in massachusetts we started getting flooded with press releases from politicians down here who were declaring themselves to be scott brown or at least florida's version of scott brown. so there was a real rush to jump
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on that ship and -- and try to use it to build on sort of the anti-incumbent, anti-establishment seth sentiment.ñi host: temple hills, maryland. caller: good morning. i am a tea party person. i am of african-american desent, meaning black. out here we have steny hoyer, horrible, horrible people. black people in maryland have been of the donkey, democrat leaning. tku2%-ját sheep. we have got to wake up. we are talking about our children's future, how they have elected all of these people that continue to push illegal immigration on us. we go to our restaurants out here, our black children are not working. what's happening here is all the hispanics.
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why? you can pay them $3 an hour. what about the fact that my son could possibly go to [unintelligible] with the health care bill. they need to learn people's voting records. and black people need to learn their history. martin luther king was a republican, people. he started out that way. we need to start paying attention to not just voting in color but voting on the issues. thank you vemp. -- very much. host: luis on the democrat line. caller: first of all, this goes to the union guy. i'm going to tell you about the union. i'm a union member of u.m.w. when i have to tell you about somebody that worked in the mines since he was 16 years old and went to school and right now he is 79 years old, and he cannot get -- he went from
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six-foot tall to 5'4", and yet he cannot get [unintelligible] because your senators will not do anything to push a bill for anybody that worked in the mines for 25 years has done nothing for the coal miners. here's my second gripe. host: caller, what legislation are you talking about specifically? caller: years ago they tried to push the coal miners to push that automatically anybody that worked in the mines for 25 years would get black lung, which was false. host: and your second point. caller: i have two other very important points.ñi i belong to the tea party, and when i have to hear that we do not welcome blacks, that is a lie. we pay $1 every time we have a
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meeting. and that goes to pay for the rent, the hall. we have a -- the point is, blacks are welcome. we have two black people there and they are welcome. host: we'll leave it there. mr. cline, are you familiar with the legislation she was referring to? guest: not at all. we had a new hampshire-related issue last year, we had a bill that was hard fought.;>z it is a perception that people have that the public employee unions, this doesn't involve miners, obviously, have benefits that they get to keep and other people don't. we had a fight over firefighters and police officers and their retirement and trying to contro3 the pension funds here in new hampshire and get that spending under control. there was a bill to raise the retirement thresh hold from 20
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years employment to 25, and it was hard fought battle, and it ended up causing a lot of ruffled feathers. host: let me ask you about a piece in "the washington post" this morning. it is an editorial written by dana millbank and the headline is "the mccain he used to be" talking about mccain's fight against campaign finance, also saying that senator mccain said before that if the generals in the field come out and say that we need to change the don't ask -don't tell policy that he would take a second look. he has now said he doesn't think the policy should be changed. he also -- on the debt issue, says that -- he calls this another traditional mccain issue. he had been a co-sponsor of a mccain debt commission, but after the vote he came up and aligned himself with the proposal. on a full line of issues he said
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mccain hasñr switched to the opposition. your paper has endorsed mccain in the past. he came to new hampshire when he wanted to revive his presidential campaign in 2008. do you see a different mccain in the last year? guest: i don't know that there is a different mccain. you know, mccain has always been someone who goes with his gut on issues. i think that's one of the reaso&k toward the end of the presidential campaign in 2008 he started a -- he started to tank. because he changed his mind on some issues. he flew back to washington to vote on the bank bailout. i -- that sort of -- i guess you might call it by the seat of his pants behavior -- has always
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been a hall mark of john mccain. host: the writer is saying he's not being that maverick anymore. he's going with more traditional lines instead of following his gut. guest: i don't know if that's true. and if he is going a little more conservative, i think a lot of people in arizona would welcome that. host: shirley in texas. caller: yes. i just have a question i would like to ask. people hear all the time about medicare fraud. i'm 80 years old. i was a democrat for years. when they start forgetting about good morals, i have been switched over pleasantly. but i have heard all this medicare fraud, and i could tell you, we compare deficits to the medicaid fraud that goes on right here in this town.
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i never hear anybody talk about those. host: the issue of medicare and tackling the spending in that? guest: medicare fraud -- probably the capital of medicare fraud in the united states is south florida which has become notorious for cheating the government. they have businesses that are set up it seems almost exclusively to do that. it is a terrible problem. we have a huge number of people on medicare. senator bill nelson, rather like ben nelson, in nebraska, was able to get into the health care bill an exemption for medicare currently in medicare advantage
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that they would be able to retain that. most of those who would retain it would be from south florida. so medicare is, though, a powerful program here in florida. i wanted to get back to an earlier point that was made about -- drew was mentioning whether people write into his newspaper about the problems with medicare. we hear much less of that here in florida. probably not surprisingly people crilt sizing the entitlement programs. their criticisms are generally geared more toward spending on other programs. even though george will is fond of noting once you get past social security and medicare and medicaid and the defense budget, everything else is a surrounding error. >> los angeles. linda on the independent line. caller: thank you very much.
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i think our government needs to learn a few words -- a moritorium on illegal immigration. we still have little, if any, background checks. revoke. they need to revoke social security members of these [unintelligible] babies, because they are being misused. rescind all the special work visas for people like billy gates to bring people from india and layoff americans. deport all the illegals who are double-dipping into our treasury. taking jobs, taking welfare, having one kid after another. foreign aid.
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we borrow money to give to foreign countries. it doesn't make sense. host: mr. cline? guest: that's a sentiment you hear a lot. i think with the unemployment issues -- numbers there are now, it is an underground issue. illegal immigration is something that has never left the consciousness. you hear a lot about jobs. it is not one of the top issues that the media likes to talk about right now, but it is out there, and there are a lot of people that are really upset about illegal imgrage. we get those sorts of letters and comments all the time. it is a steady stream. it will peak at points when it becomes a hot issue nationally, but it never goes away. i think this summer, going into the 2010 elections, that's going to be one of the issues that is sort of working its way underground as an undercurrent that might not get talks --
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talked about in the press, but it is there. >> greg, you're on the air. guest: good morning. caller: you said off-shoring dud doesn't affect unemployment rate when a lot is done overseas. that's hit on north carolina hard. manufacturing has hit ohio hard. that's done overseas. when you have i.t. jobs taken overseas or visas that are being used for people to get into the country, all jobs impact on american citizens and there are indeed thousands of millions of individuals who are now out of work, and that has a direct correlation to unemployment. it blows me away that you say that. host: 0 mr. cline, your comment? guest: i said it is not the
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largest factor in the current unemployment rate. i agree with you. shipping jobs overseas affects the unemployment rate. no question about that. host: go ahead. caller: somebody already menged the deal about the u.s. government benefits, but i was looking on the u.s. chart on my computer, and it shows that we pay out over $18 billion a year on benefits for federal workers and that there is over four million federal workers and over 16 million state and local workers. and that the average u.s. government worker made $72,000 a year without benefits. i mean, you have the common man out here -- like they say, the common man out here is the one that works in the private sector to create the money. they create no money but they do the biggest job and get the biggest share.
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we're the guys out here that say we don't get the good insurance policies. one other point i'd like to make, i always hear that the reason that the big business is always going over to china is because the tax burden. but then you hear the pundits say, well, when big business getsedñi -- gets taxed, they ta the consumer. why did the jobs go over to china? if we're paying the taxes so the corporations didn't have to pay the taxes, why did they go over there outside the fact that they didn't have to pay our visas. host: mr. lafferty. guest: i would like to frame the benefits for public employees in terms of southern florida. we had an editorial yesterday that urged the state legislature
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to look at reforming pension and benefit plans for state employees. state employees, there are several 10's of thousands who pay nothing for their health care. it is free. that includes legislators. it includes the governor. and higher ranking state employees. even those employees who do pay a premium for their health care, it's very low. much lower than people in the private sector pay. so i'm sure that this is true on the national level, too. here in florida, we see that as a way to -- that the state government can save some money and sort of level the playing field between dependent benefits to public employees and basically everyone else. host: anchorage, alaska, bob on
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the independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. this is a little off your subject. but for employing people, i have an idea. if they want to employ a lot of people, that would be to reactivate the draft, but with two changes -- one draft all, including men and women, and two, create a new element of social service or government -- country service and run it like the garden reserve program. that would bring a lot of people off the street, put them to work. the money they would receive in pay would filter through the economy, and i suspect the program with multiplier factor probably could pay for itself in what it could increase in taxes. host: do you have an idea? guest: first of all, it would be
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a gross violation of civil liberties to force people to serve the government. secondly, you have to craft it out of -- it would be an economic disaster. host: democratic line. you are on the air. caller: thank you for taking my call, c-span. first i have a statement to make and then -- host: ok. make it fast. caller: in year 2010 it is sad to see we still have some porch negros. what that means is that i want african-americans to stop believing that hispanics are taking your jobs. you need to go to the dictionary and find out what "take" means. take means you own something and then someone cake and took it by force. they are not taking your jobs. the white man that hired you or didn't hire you opted to fire
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you and then hire the hispanic in your place for less money. and also -- host: what's your question? caller: to kill two birds with one stone, he can keep more money in his pocket and turn people of color against each other and that's how he stays in power. now the question was, where were you two gentlemen when george bush was stealing every dime in this country and the bottom fell out? when my president, obama, took office, this country was already bankrupt and bleeding profusely. where were you then? host: mr. cline? guest: to begin with, we editorialized aggressively against president bush's over-spending. we have articles going back to
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2002 attacking president bush for his over-spending. we opposeded medicare benefit. we got in trouble with the republican national committee for criticizing spending so much and for attacking republicans as a party for abandoning the principles of -- of ronald reagan. so we have been there all along. host: mr. lafferty? guest: i think like my counterpart we, too, have a long history of criticizing president bush over his spending. we have not treated obama any differently than president bush in that respect. host: next phone call comes from ed in toledo, ohio.
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caller: the big lies from the opinion page is "promote." i'm a small "r" republican. article 4, section 4, constitution -- we are a republican with a republican form of government. how many editorialals do you promote. we are not a left and right nation. we are a vertical at the nation. anarchy at the bottom. our constitution a little above it. if you go to the top, you have king george. that can be king george or that can be king george of the republican party or president obama or [unintelligible] third thing we do not have money. since richard nixon, the trader, took us off the gold standard, and his father, f.d.r., started it in the 1940's, currency is not money. money is coins, it is silver backed by silver. host: anything on those comments? guest: i'm not quite sure what
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to say. we do believe in a representative form of government. in fact, there is curnt currently in florida a constitutional amendment that would force any changes to local governments. they have what's called a comprehensive plan, which is basically a blueprint for how they grow. there is a movement to force a vote on every one of those changes. in fact, we have used the argument that because we are a representative form of government, that these are decisions that ought to be left to the people that make them. host: nancy is joining us on the democratic line. caller: i was wondering why aren't reporters actually going out there and doing more fact checking and presenting more along the lines of facts? as far as the tea party movement goes, i'm not a member of it, but i would like to join one that represented more of the middle class or lower, and i think i lot of our anger has to
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do with every time you see a cut in something, it's always going to have to be the middle class that takes the cut. now whether it is social security or medicare or even a taxes. they talk about taxes for the wealthier people, but they don't ever mention that over the last 2, 30 years, the wage disparity between the average worker and upper class has went from 20% to 30% to 300% or 400%. host: mr. cline, do you believe in the state of new hampshire that there are people like that caller who could be a bigger pool to this tea party movement but are hesitant to join the tea party? guest: oh, sure. new hampshire -- in new hampshire we are rugged individual lifts --
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individualists and we are reluctant to join anything. but there are people who might agree but aren't going to sign up and get on the mailing list. host: what do you think the impact is, if there are mow more people out there but not necessarily signing up with this group? guest: as i said, it is a movement in the sense that even if you don't identify yourself as a tea partier, there are a lot more people who sort of spill over the boundaries, however you might define those boundaries of tea party movement who agree with a lot of his ideas or who feel similar frustrations. that's why i think it is a powerful movement in new hampshire to be reckonned with. it is not that the numbers are so large, it is that they are tapping into a frustration with over-spending, particularly deficit spending and with taxes
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-- taxation. that crosses party lines. it is a little broader, i would say, than the numbers that show up at the rallies would reflect. >> host: david. caller: are people in florida chomping at the bit to ride the train? are they really in dire need of a train? do they want to use public transportation or are they going to go back to driving cars when the rails get installed? thank you. guest: we actually in addition to the high-speed rail that will connect orlando and tampa, the state recently approved a commuter rail line that will run basically through the heart of central florida that is intended to move people to and from their jobs largely. the question is, are people
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chomping at the bit to do it? it is a little hard to answer. there is a bit of an unknown factor here as far as how many people will ride these. i believe, and our editorial board believes, that the commuter rail line will be -- will get a lot of passengers. we have a highway that cuts through the state called interstate 4. it is many mornings basically a parking lot. the traffic through -- in orlando to tampa that the high-speed rail would serve is also very heavy. but the caller raises a good point. there is some question about whether or not enough people will ride between orlando and tampa to make it viable. there is also a belief, though, that this is a solution that goes beyond cars.
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if we are to solve transportation problems, you have to go beyond cars. host: liberty, nebraska. caller: the lady with the coal mining party, she should realize that the man that started the tea party has a brick mansion down in arkansas, and he wanted to borrow money from the bank and they wouldn't loan it to him, and i don'tçó feel a bit story for him. the republican party has greedy people and confused.ñ the greedy people are sending out all this information i get in the paper. ronald reagan was the biggest idiot we voted in. we never seen a trillion dollars for 200 years and after four years of that guy we were in
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debt $4 trillion. i guess that's all you have to say. thank you. host: for both of you gentlemen, if you could quickly address the issue of campaign financing. what you are hearing from your viewership there or your readers there, i should say, on the issue of campaigning and public fundraising, et cetera. mr. cline, why don't you go first. guest: it is an issue that sort of weirdly cuts across ideological lines. there is the idea that special interests are financing candidates and so forth, but editorially we are in favor of the first amendment. when it says "congress shall make no law" we take that seriously and we believe congress shall make no law. host: mr. rafferty? guest: we have had a mixed
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reaction to that. i think the sympathy level for corporations is fairly low right now. i think in another time we might have heard a little more sympathy from our readers about restrictions on their ability to finance campaigns. we're not hearing that sympathy right now. host: thank you both of you for your time this morning. we appreciate it. guest: thank you. host: coming up next, we're going to open up the phone lines for the last 15 minutes of today's "washington journal." you can call in about anything that we've talked in -- talked about on the program today. first a look ahead. >> topics will include the national tea party conventionñi and other political issues. also the economy. iraq, afghanistan, and pakistan and the super bowl. the guests on "meet the press" will be john brennan, president obama's top counterterrorism advisor.
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also the treasury secretary henry paulson and former fed chairman alan greenspan. also jay tacker will speak with timothy geithner. guests on fox news sunday hosted by chris wallace will include sarah palin and national tea party convention spokesman michael skoda. the site of super bowl xliv will be interviewed nfl commissioner roger go desm ll. also "state of the union" guests will include secretaryñi of sta hillary clinton. you can listen to all five of the sunday morning talk shows starting at noon eastern c-span radio. that's 90.1 f.m. here in snowy washington, d.c. on the web at
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follow us on facebook and at which timer. -- and twitter. >>xd "imdepth" welcomes paul johnson. "heroes." his latest on winston churchill. today at noon5açó eastern onñi tv's "in-depth" on c-span2. >> i try to be entertaining, informtive, and relevant.çó >> tom hartman our guest tonight at 8:00 on c-span's "q & a." >> this week on "theñi
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communicators." monday night on c-span2. "washington journal" continues. host: and open phones for the remainder of today's "washington journal". we'll put the phone lines up on the screen for you. why we wait joining us on the phone is dahlia joining us to talk about a story that the white house is working behind-the-scenes to replace two supreme court places. guest: i don't think it is a new story. i think there was a big piece on abc at the end of last week saying john paul stevens is 89 and he's only hired one clerk instead of three for next fall. ginsburg is 76. recently recovering from pancreatic cancer. this is a story which says something we already knew which says there are two justices
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definitely looking to retire at some point soon. the speculation was it would happen sooner rather than later. as soon as -- maybe as soon as this spring. host: what are the names being floated out there? guest: it is similar to what we had last spring except sonia sotomayor isn't on it anymore. the dean of harvard law school, diane wood, a judge on the district circuit court of appeals. it is a very similar list. one of the things that i think will solidify who is on the liz is if ginsburg steps down, i think obama might be inclined to take a woman rather than a man. host: behind-the-scenes movement accident whether it is old or new, that the white house in the 2010 electrics will try to make the supreme court pick.
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a whole issue part of making sure the democrats retain their majority in the house and senate. what do you hear? guest: i think wuvent reasons president obama took a whack at the supreme court last week in the state of the union is he is going to make the court and the composition of the court more of an issue. this big campaign finance decision that came down is sort of mana from heaven for this white house. it is a decision that really riled up a sense of a populous satisfaction with the court a sense that the court was giving corporations personhood. i think you are quite right to say that his -- he's e!ing it up for the elections. he's putting it on so that he can put --
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host: thank you very much for your time. guest: i appreciate it. host: open calls. caller: i would like to go especially to the center for three things. and the first thing is the center for -- senator for alabama and thank him and the senator from arizona and then the majority leader for our party. those three senators get together and they think about us. us, the american people. they will change the things, not only for the insurance reforms, because the truth is, we are the ones that are sovereign. those three senators really
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think about the american people, they should get together and find common ground with the people who are in the majority right now. host: vivian in spotsylvania, virginia, go ahead. caller: the tea party, yes they are a bunch of racist people. i looked at the tea party, and i said where are the black people? they have wanda from fox news, and boy, she needs to take the weave out of her hair. ronald reagan started this problem. the republicans are so misinformed. they idolize the mayor. most of them were veterans. support our troops, people. support our troops. host: vivian, what do you say to people who say that the tea party is not a racist movement and that's a generalization across the board? caller: they must stop being so
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republican and so right wing and try to reach out and meet some blacks. but i'm not going to judge anybody, because that's not my goal. that's god's goal. he will judge in the end. and the republicans, all they talk about is abortion. rush limbaugh, how many kids he got? zilch. if you are so pro-children, wouldn't you have some? host: missouri. good morning. caller: i will answer one ge a caller called in this morning and give you specific examples from my comments. a caller called in about corruption or inevent tude -- or ineptitude in congress. my answer is that congress ask both -- is both corrupt and inevent. a majority of the voting people are inevent. -- are inevent.
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i'll give you examples. i made 17 calls to congressman asking them if they could explain the difference between corporate debt, government public debt, and total debt, and they could not. so why i say ineventness on the part of -- ineptness on the part of the two gentlemen you had on this morning. you can't look at a tax rate table to see rates. pete marwick, an international auditting firm puts out a publication on this every year or two, and in 2008 the united states ranked 17th. host: we'll leave it there. the republican line from michigan. caller: a couple points, if you let me get them out. as far as the tea partiers go. i've attended a couple. there are blacks, democrats,
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liberals, independentents, and it is not anything against obama . it is against his policies. tea partiers are not racist. another thing is, sarah palin does not represent most of the tea partiers' views. because she's out there going to campaign for rick perry and part of the builderberg and these big republican views are what most of the tea partiers against. the republicans and democrats have to watch their backs because it is the libertarians and the people that believe in the and what our country was founded on that is important to the tea partiers. host: sarah palin is speaking at a rally for rick perry today. next month she will speak at
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harry reid, hometown of searchlight, nevada to launch the tea party express iii tour. in april, she heads to boston. caller: [unintelligible] i want to bring up the fact a couple people don't really mention all that often, everybody was talking about maybe there was going to be a [unintelligible] 2004 bush won barely with a smaller percentage than truman did. in 2000 people voted for a senator-left president.
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in 1992 and 1996 bill won. america is not center left, it is a center, center, center country. host: here's -- a little bit from the "new york times" this morning the tea party convention. it says the goal is electing a conservative congress in 2010 and a conservative president in 2012. to that end organizers announced the formation of a political action committee they say could steer $10 million to conservative challengers this year. independent line, good morning. caller: good morning. host: go ahead. what are your thoughts. caller: i'm thinking about conservatives. we've been listening to that over and over again. over and over again. conservatives are based on
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rainfall. it is based on the -- based on racism. it is based on the policy to keep the white man in charge of everything. host: how is that? caller: that started years ago with the democratic party. i'm a 72-year-old black man, and i know what i'm talking about. it started with the democratic party. the democratic party -- when the black people started voting democratic, then the white people that was racist -- in other words, the dixicrats -- moved to the republican party. you're a woman. conservative that means that's going to be for everybody, it's not. host: calvin on the republican line in north carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. good god almighty, you-all have a job there, don't you?
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i've been watching people carry on about what the people got to do. you have a job, and that's your job. and black people have been themselves ever since black been themselves. it is not a rainfall -- racism thing, it is a thing that had to be kept in a certain perspective. that way the middle class can stay where they are and the poor can stay where they are at. we are listening to things we shouldn't be listening to. it should be dealt with in another way. what we're concerned with is the wealth the middle class, the poor people, and the people are telling us that is needed. host: chicago. democratic line. good morning. caller: good morning, c-span. i'm a first-time caller. i'm basically calling regarding the tea party.
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one of the previous callers stated the tea party was a racist organization. however, i'm not saying that every one in the tea party is a racist person. the face of the tea party appears to be racist. the images that we receive, the comments that tom tancredo made, who himself is from an immigrant background. it seems like i went to sleep and woke up in a parallel universe from 1955. these images of literacy tests, these images that are conjured up by the tea party. and this person was a keynote speaker. sarah palin during her run for vice president, she did nothing to tone down the racist rhetoric one bit when there were people yelling "kill him" when they were speaking of the president.
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i find this horrendous. i see where it is not advancing america any further. i do believe that in terms of the wars going on in afghanistan in iraq, these are -- they are real terrorists out there. hourve, it seems -- however it seems as though some of these tea party people and some of these conservatives are actually inviting terrorists to act. host: we need to leave it there because we have to get one more phone call in. r.j. on the conservative line. -- on the republican line. go ahead. caller: i want to make a comment about our country's deficit. our nation is declining in a serious way. if we don't take care of our debt, both presidents that were in office, they haven't addressed our $12 trillion worth of debt. of debt. then we have interest rates that


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