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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  September 23, 2011 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT

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good evening, i'm chris matthews in washington. leading off tonight, the texas massacre. with each successive debate, rick perry looks more and more like a aaa ballplayer trying it in the majors. he was lost last night on foreign policy, stumbled, bumbled, and fumbled his way through what should have been an easy attack on mitt romney's flip-flopping, and managed to say to republicans who disagree with his immigration policy they don't have a heart. not a smart move. republicans, he called, didn't have a heart. he even got caught on what i would enginously call a nonfact, how about a fib. once again, the republican audience became the story itself, this time booing, you're not going to believe this, maybe you will, booing a u.s. serviceman for being gay. that's it, they booed him out loud for being gay. and this has become a huge negative for the gop, cheering the death penalty, for example. yelling, "let 'em die" to someone who didn't have health insurance. and it doesn't help that the
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candidates never take a stand against this ugliness. they never say, excuse me, moment of personal privilege, i'm not one of them. plus, worst suspicions confirmed department, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, mike mullen, accuses the pakistani government of directly supporting attacks on the united states in afghanistan by aiding pakistani militants. is the u.s., our country, prepared to go into pakistan and take the militants out? also, as expected, the palestinian authority has officially requested full membership status at the u.n. that's statehood, nationhood, if you will, and also, as expected, israeli's prime minister benjamin netanyahu told the u.n., not as far as he's concerned. israel's ambassador to the united states joins us tonight live on "hardball." finally, check out michele bachmann's claim that americans should be allowed to keep every dollar they earn. no more taxes at all, period. how exactly does he expect to fund the government she wants to run? by the way, how's she paying for that big, long fence with mexico she wants. smaller question, how does she expected to get paid this week? we start with rick perry's
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flip-flop -- actually, his flop, simple flop at last night's debate. david corn's an msnbc analyst and "the washington post" bur bureau chief for "mother jones" magazine, and sally joins us. these stories are pretty dramatic, pretty unforgiving of rick perry's performance last night. take a look at a few of these headlines, they are damming. a politico story headl perry worries gop" michael medvedev, an overall critic for everything, he wrote, "rick perry, beginning of the end?" here's a talking points memo story called "running with rick, conservatives turn on perry after debate." and bill perry wrote a special edtory on the debate headlined " "yikes." he said, no presidential front-runner has ever had as weak a showing as rick perry. it was a disqualifying two hours
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for him. i want to start with sally, a political consultant, runs campaigns down in florida. thank you for joining pus. give us your point of view, among republicans, that's the target audience, from now until next spring, through next spring, how bad did rick perry do last night? >> he had a tough night. i think it would be difficult to say, and i think even his own folks would acknowledge it was a difficult night for perry. and more than just being a difficult night in the debate, he created an opening for governor romney with about 3,500 republican activists who were gathered in ander right now for a straw ballot that will take place tomorrow. this is a straw ballot that governor romney had declined to participate in, but, again, there's been an opening created. i think what you have to remember, though, chris, is that we are still very early. at this point, three, four years ago, rudy giuliani was the darling of the media and was leading in all the polls. so things can change very quickly. >> yeah, but politics gets more advanced every four years. things move a lot faster. and i agree with you, everybody points out, somebody did it last
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night, rudy giuliani was the leader at this time. >> fred thompson. >> let's take a look at one of the weakest moments we believe on the fox news debate for mr. perry, the governor of texas. he stumbled over what should have been -- this is the easiest, which is a chip, a 6" putt, and a well-rehearsed riff on romney's politics, and he couldn't say it. let's listen. >> i think americans just don't know sometimes which mitt romney they're dealing with. is it the mitt romney that was on the side of -- against the second amendment, before he was for the second amendment? was it before he was before the social programs from the standpoint of he was far, standing up for roe versus wade, before he was against verse -- roe versus wade. he was for race to the top. he's for obama care, and now he's against it. >> david corn, i have never
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counted so many brain freezes in one sentence. >> please make it stop, chris, please! we saw it last night. he's making george w. bush look like the most articulate statesman from texas ever! but as bad as that response was, you know, he obviously had prepared for that line of attack and then couldn't pull it off. >> but remember, when you can't remember the capital of florida for a couple of seconds, you have to think a little bit, here's a guy trying to remember what he just rehearsed for the show that night. >> an index card, it was on for him. i don't know if we're going to get to it -- >> we'll get to it. >> the answer that he gave on pakistan, that was actually frightening. >> you know what, we have the power to go to that right now. here's fox news debate moderator brett bear asking perry what he would do if he received the old 3:00 a.m. call, if pakistan lost its nuclear weapons to the taliban. here's part of perry's response. >> just yesterday, we found out through admiral mullen that hakani has been involved with -- and that's the terrorist group,
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directly associated with the pakistani country. so to have a relationship with india, to make sure that india knows that they are an ally of the united states. today, we don't have those allies in that region that can assist us if that situation that you talked about were to become a reality. >> sally, remember that beauty contestant a couple years ago that started talking about south africa, and then she was talking about iraq, and just thinking of all those things that were in her head, but nothing logical. what has india got to do with stopping -- india's a nuclear power. oh, that's what we're going to do. we're going to get a nuclear power no south asia to go over to the nuclear power in south asia, our worst fear in history. go ahead. >> here's the challenge, and this is, you know, certainly governor romney had a good night. nobody can deny that. but rick perry can take some solace in the fact that debates don't nominate candidates. they are a piece of the puzzle, and they're an important piece of the puzzle, but i can tell
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you just speaking from someone who lives in florida and is actually a delegate to this straw ballot tomorrow, people in florida, unlike in iowa and new hampshire and even south carolina, are much less focused on this race at this point. it's a huge -- >> well, let me ask you this, sally. i agree they don't always decide elections. i think senator kerry won a couple bouts with bush last time around. but something has to be on the other side. sure, one guy could be shaper, al gore can be shaper than george bush and all that, but you have to like the other guy more. was there something likable that offset perry's sort of inability to speak? was with he likable last night? i didn't think so. >> i think there are people in florida who are looking for a candidate who is very direct and speaks the truth. and that is what governor perry unsuccessfully attempted to exploit about governor romney, were his perceived flip-flops on issues. and there's still an audience for that there. the other thing you have to remember is that this is a very expensive race. it's a marathon, not a sprint. there are really three candidates the way i see it who
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have the resources to compete in the long haul. and to me, the long haul means through florida. which is looking at a relatively early primary now of late february. i think florida will be the deciding contest -- >> who's the third? >> perry, romney, and huntsman. and huntsman, interestingly enough, with respect to this straw ballot, was the only candidate early on who committed to play. he had a really strong team here, his wife is from orlando, they have invested resources. he may overperform. so not only did perry create an opening for romney with these florida delegates, but he may have created an opening for huntsman and other candidates as well. >> who wins the straw vote tomorrow? do you think romney or somebody else? >> i don't know if romney will win it, but romney could finish much stronger than people anticipated he would. he needs to finish second, because romney has the longest relationship with these delegates. he's not new to this, he did campaign here very actively in 2008. >> let's take a look at this, speaking today at the cpac conference in florida, rick perry tried some damage control from last night. let's listen.
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>> as conservatives, we know that values and vision matter. it's not who is the slickest candidate or the smoothest debater that we need to elect. we need to elect the candidate with the best record and the best vision for this country. >> well, there he is, reading his notes, of course, but there he is. well, will that point sell with anybody? can you lose a debate badly and say it didn't matter? >> no, you can't say it didn't matter. sally's right that a lot of people won't pay attention, but he's had several outings now, and he hasn't -- >> he's 0 for 3. >> yeah, he's 0 for 3, he hasn't been impressive yet, which tells me he's not being serious. debate prep is one of the most serious things a candidate can do. and he seems to have a problem staying up past the first hour of any debate. he trails off. maybe he needs some iron supplements or something. >> i wonder about that too. bush had that the problem too. >> you notice how he said, it's not who's the most slick or the
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smoothest, he didn't use the word "smart." but if you look at his answers last night, he didn't come across as a guy with enough intellectual heft to make hard decisions in the white house. >> here's a moment last night where romney really stuck it to perry on statements on social security in perwy's book "fed up." here's a portion of that debate last night. >> it's not the first time that mitt's been wrong on some issues before. and bottom line is, we never said that we were going to move this back to the states. >> it's different than what the governor put in his book just, what, six months ago? there's a rick perry out there saying, almost a quote, that the federal government shouldn't be in the pension business, that it's unconstitutional, unconstitutional, and it should be returned to the states. so you better find that rick perry and get him to stop saying that. now, my own -- >> that's a good line. >> you know, sally, i was thinking the other day, as much as governor romney, who served one term in massachusetts likes to say he's a business person,
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he has been running for office all the way back to when he ran against the late ted kennedy in 1994. he has been winning or losing debates all that time. he's ban professional tv debater in many ways, going back to that governor's race, the senate race, the presidential race last time. he has gotten better. i don't know whether he's gotten more spontaneous or smarter, but he is more skilled in that setting. is that going to matter? >> he's an excellent debater, there's no question. i was glad to see him show some spontaneity. the truth about both of these guys is that rick perry is smarter than people give him credit for and governor romney is more approachable and human than people give him credit for. we try to take a two-hour debate and project everything based on the performance of these candidates. and it's probably a little unfair to everybody. they're both really interesting guys. it's great to be in florida in the midst of this, because, again, i think we are going to be a deciding factor in this nomination. >> you are. by the way, looking at that straw vote you have tomorrow, we looked at it. back in '80, you picked reagan,
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he won the nomination. in '8 8, pushed herbert walker bush. he won the election. in '96, picked dole, he won the nomination, lost the general in a very tough race against an incumbent president, president clinton. but it is a really good thing. i'm going to be watching that -- aren't you going to be watching that? sally, don't you think that's going to be very important tomorrow who does come out ahead in your straw vote down there, with 3,800 delegates participating. >> it is a leading indicator of the candidates' support down here, these are delegates elected in 67 county caucuses and the number of delegates per county is based on the amount of republican registration. and these are the people who make the phone calls and go the door to door and participate 19 teletown hall meetings. i mean, they have a say in this. and that's, again, why it's so interesting. we don't know what's going to happen. i think we could have predicted that perry would be the front-runner prior to last night's debate. i think it's a little more uncertain now. >> i think florida's going to play a big role in the nomination process, it will be
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interesting who they pick, but it won't matter much, because the race will roll on and rick perry and mitt romney will have lots of money. you know, they'll be able to survive the marathon -- >> sally, you get to vote, are you a delegate tomorrow? will you get to vote? >> i am a delegate. who are you voting for? >> i haven't decided. >> undecided?! >> okay, i do nthis for a livin here, where are you leaning right now, on live tv, on a friday night? >> i'm leaning toward haley barbour, who was my candidate before -- >> but he's not running. you're hiding. you're hiding with haley. thank you so much, we'll have you back, sally bradshaw. call her undecided. >> she didn't say rick perry, though. >> that is -- well, i'm not sure she was ever for perry. if you don't tell us, i can make it up. coming along, the other headline from last night's debate wasn't so beautiful to watch, it was kind of ugly. it was the crowd's reaction.
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the audience became the story last night about gay soldier fighting in uniform, there he is, booing somebody fighting for our country and risking his life over there. why won't any of the candidates stand up against this stuff, even now. there's lots of time and nobody's standing up against this kind of stuff. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. [ female announcer ] introducing new pronutrients from centrum. omega-3s go beyond heart health. probiotics go beyond digestive balance. and fruit & veggie has antioxidant properties. new pronutrients from centrum. help make nutrition possible. she won't eat eggs without hot sauce. she has kind of funny looking toes. she's always touching my hair. and she does this dancing finger thing. [ male announcer ] with advanced technology from ge, now doctors can diagnose diseases like breast cancer on a cellular level. so that women, like kristy's mom,
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jewish voters continue to be far more enthusiastic than president obama than other voters. we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] you are a business pro. executor of efficiency. you can spot an amateur from a mile away... while going shoeless and metal-free in seconds. and from national. because only national lets you choose any car in the aisle...and go. you can even take a full-size or above, and still pay the mid-size price. now this...will work. [ male announcer ] just like you, business pro. just like you. go national. go like a pro.
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well, back to "hardball." rick perry's uneven performance may have been the biggest headline to come out of last night's debate, but it may not be the most enduring. for the third time in a row, republican audiences out there made news. the audiences, and not the kind you want. here's the crowd last night reacting to a question from a gay soldier over in iraq. this guy's on duty, on post. and watch what happens. let's listen. >> in 2010, when i was deployed to iraq, i had to lie about who i was, because i'm a gay soldier, and i didn't want to lose my job. my question is, under one of your presidencies, do you intend to circumvent the progress that's been made for gay and lesbian soldiers in the military? [ audience booing ] >> yeah, i would say any type of sexual activity has absolutely no place in the military. the military's job is to do one
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thing, and that is to defend our country. we need to give the military, which is all volunteer, the ability to do so in a way that is most efficient and protective of our men and women in uniform. and i believe this undermines that ability. [ audience cheering ] >> well, there's the republican party coming out against sex in the military. anyway, the debates last night, some of the audience cheers executions, remember that one, the previous debates, and allowing the uninsured to do, that was in the tea party debate. well, this can't help the image of a party looking to win a national election, i wouldn't think. alex burns is with politico and chris cillizza is managing editor of and an msnbc contributor. thank you, gentleman, both -- alex, thanks for joining. alex, i want to hear what you think about this. this sort of raw stuff coming out of republican audiences, anti-gay, burn 'em, just right off the bat, let's execute hundreds of people, really anti-attitudes about people who don't have health insurance. let 'em die on the gurney! this instinctive negativity and
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even hatred of people who are in trouble and are vulnerable doesn't strike me as a compassionate conservative commentary on the party? >> well, chris, i think that you just sort of hit the nail right on the head with that term, compassionate conservative. there's an opening here for one of the candidates on the stage to be the guy at the debate who says, you know what, let's just take the temperature down a couple of degrees. let's enforce criminal laws, let's not cheer for executions. you know, let's get tough on health insurance, let's not cheer for people who die because they don't have it. you know, there's that space there for someone to sound like the compassionate guy, the guy with heart. no one has sort of stepped up into that role just yet. >> chris cillizza? >> you know, alex is right, but i would add, the guy who looks presidential and sounds presidential, right, you're the president of the whole country. i know it's a primary, in democratic primaries you're on the left and republican primaries, you're on the right. >> who says all gay people are democrats? don't they feel any love at all or exceptions of the people in
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their own political ranks? >> you know what it struck me as, as i was watching, is that there's no natural in this debate. there's no natural in this field. let me explain. if that happened with bill clinton or ronald reagan -- >> what would bill have done? >> they would have said, you know what, this guy is in there, he's risking his life for us. they would have paused -- now, he might have probably gotten to whatever point he wanted to get to, but he would have paused, because he is naturally gifted at leadi ining and understandind that matters. >> you're on to something. here's what you're on to, is there any natural leader who can stand against the crowd in the republican party, or is it mob rule? in other words, they have these raw emotions, fine, but usually there's a leader that stands up. they don't need edmond burke, who stands up and says, let's think that through again. this man is fighting for our country, you may not approve about his political orientations, but he's fighting for our country, let's have a hand of applause for everyone in our military. that would be a chilling moment. and here's my hunch, it doesn't work. perry came out for having a
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heart for the illegal immigrant's kid who came into this country at the age of 3 and is trying to get into college in the state he's living in. >> got booed, chris. >> is it possible, alex, you can't stand against this mob rule right now on the tea party right? you can't do that? >> i think that answer you were mentioning from the texas governor rick perry did him an awful lot of damage. and not necessarily because he tried to be compassionate in a party that's hostile to compassion, but because he questioned the motives of people who disagree with him on immigration. so i think that that could have been a moment for him, where he tries to take kind of the george w. bush line on immigration, you know, that if you're going to walk 200 miles through the desert for a job, i want you in my country. but he didn't quite pull it off. and i think that goes to the other chris' point that there's not a natural in this election, there's not a guy who in that split second -- >> but even mccain, who wasn't a brilliant politician, he stood up against calling obama a muslim. >> chris, this is the back and forth. if you look at polling, republican voters say, we want
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someone who can win and who can lead, not just someone who agrees with us. but that's in theory. in practice, all of these guys, and i would say romney is the least like this. look, romney -- you've heard mitt romney say arne duncan did some good things, praising anyone in the obama administration is not good. so he's willing to go as close as you can go, and remember last night, provoked about did he think the obama administration was a socialist, he didn't answer -- >> so he's not willing to get in the barrel and do what they want him to, like, for example, he will not say -- he will not say he's a socialist. he will not say, i, mitt romney, am a tea partier either. he's very careful not to ruin himself for the general. here he is. let's listen to rick perry, given a chance, receiving a round of boos for defending his position on educational opportunities in texas for those children, get this, of illegal immigrants. >> if you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no other reason than they've been brought
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there, by no fault of their own, i don't think you have a heart. this was a state issue, texans voted on it, and i still support it greatly. >> senator santorum -- >> you heard that, alex, it began as some whoops, some success for him, because there's obviously his supporters there, but then you heard that slow, delayed, mean roar of disapproval. frank luntz, who was doing their focus group afterwards said that was the least popular thing said in that focus group the entire evening, talking about heart. he said, conservatives are offended when you suggest they don't have a heart. >> well, i think for the first two-thirds of that answer, rick perry was on to something, talking about sort of being compassionate toward the children of undocumented immigrants. john mccain's answer was sort of the textbook answer on this, that, look, we can disagree around the policy, but we all have to recognize that these people we're talking about are all god's children. but that's not where rick perry went. he went and said that a position that most people in the republican party hold is heartless. >> yeah, because, well, they did
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make a very good point. now, i'll tell you, i understand completely why he's compassionate towards the children of people coming here, compassionate toward anybody. texas state, in-state tuition saves you $22,000 a year, as we pointed out last night. someone's from oklahoma doesn't get that, but somebody from mexico does get that. but look at it another way, they're living in the state, they're a resident of the state, and he's looking out for them. >> here's the deal, chris, to alex's point, that there's no natural in this debate. what do you do in a debate when you know the people you're talking to are agreeing -- >> a natural's another word for a leader. >> you start from a point of agreement and then go to where you disagree. you can say, we can all agree on fill in the blank. you don't start with the -- if you disagree with me, you're wrong. and that's -- perry -- romney's a -- >> -- clinton in the democratic party. >> and imagine mike huckabee answering -- >> you ought to write a book on that called "natural authority." thank you, great having you on, alex burns. cillizza, one of the young
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geniuses i do read often. maybe not genius, but smart. >> i'll take it. zblup next, michele bachmann says americans should be allowed to keep every dollar -- catch this, no payment for government -- this is like that old roosevelt cartoon, it won't cost you anything if you vote for me. my salary's free. how far is she going? who's going to pay her paycheck if we don't pay taxes. stick around, she belongs there, the sideshow. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. ♪ i like dat
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it all goes back to the mom and pop business and building something from the heart, founded within a family. when i found out i was pregnant, daniel was working on our second location. everyone will find out soon enough i think that something's happening. ♪ ♪ back to "hardball." now to the sideshow. a great sideshow tonight. first, it wasn't all tense at last night's gop debate, as candidates sparred back and forth with each other, new to the debate scene was candidate gary johnson of new mexico. he tried to inspire some laughs. >> my next-door neighbor's two dogs have created more shovel-ready jobs than this
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current administration. >> well, he was playing to the right crowd with that one. only problem, the joke was vaguely familiar. >> my dogs have created more shovel-ready work than obama has. >> wow. almost verbatim. but, don't jump to conclusions. rush may have done some borrowing himself. check out this photo from a tea party way back in 2009. you've got to give credit where credit's due. wow. and more from the debate front, here's a new take on reality. at one point, candidates were asked about taxes. let's here the inimitable michele bachmann's one-of-a-kind take on tax policy. now, she's running for president. here she goes. >> i think you earn every dollar, you should get to keep every dollar that you earn. that's your money. that's not the government's money. that's the whole point. barack obama seems to think that when we earn money, it belongs to him. and we're lucky just to keep a little bit of it. i don't think that at all.
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i think when people make money, it's their money. >> that's right, we shouldn't have any taxes, so, one, no one pays a dime. well, to be fair to bachmann, very fair, take a few steps back, saying we do need to make some contributions to fund the government over time, but not before as a country we have a change of mind-set, then we have to pay tax. 200 proof pandering on display here. anyway, perhaps these types of comments and blanket statements led to tonight's big number. a survey by t"the huffington post" asked a group of republican political activists, office holders and leaders in the early caucus primary states to give one word for what they think of bachmann. there they are, the results displayed this word cloud with the biggest words being the most common. look at those words. crazy, scary, inexperienced. not good news for bachmann. what portion of the responses fell on the negative side? among republicans, 48% against bachmann, coming from her own party, trouble in river city.
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that's tonight's big number. up next, slam islamabad, we have a problem. the chairmans of the joint chiefs of staff support the government of supporting militant who is support our embassy in kabul, afghanistan. that's ahead.
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i'm milissa rehberger with your cnbc market wrap. a somewhat positive end to an ugly, ugly week. the dow added 37 points in relatively thin trading. the s&p was up 6, the nasdaq jumped 27. it was the dow's worst week since october of 2008, with relentless uncertainty in europe and some pretty grim talk from the fed here at home.
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we're looking at a kpcommodity meltdown as well. gold had its worst week since 1983. and silver prices falling an incredibly 26% this week. mining stocks took a beating on concern about slowing demand. banks bounced back a bit from yesterday's sell-off, but the sector's still down almost 30% this week. in better news, mcdonald's gained after bumping its dividend. and it looks like a run by nike's got legs. strong earnings again last quarter means the athletic apparel maker has not posted a quarterly loss since 2002. that is it from cnbc, first in business worldwide. now back to "hardball". back to "hardball." how troubled has our relationship with pakistan become? yesterday, admiral mike mullen, the country's top military official told a senate armed service committee hearing that
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pakistan's intelligence service, the isi, was directly linked to pakistani militants that target militants in neighboring afghanistan. he said the hakani network, one of america's fiercest enemies in afghanistan acted a veritable arm as pakistan's intelligence service. he said, pakistan helped the grew carry out several attacks, including the intense assault on the u.s. embassy in kabul just last week. let's listen to admiral mullen's testimony. >> in choosing to use violent extremism as an instrument of policy, the government of pakistan and most especially, the pakistani army and isi, jeopardizes not only the prospect of our strategic partnership, but pakistan's opportunity to be a respected nation with legitimate regional influence. >> well, keep in mind, the u.s. gives pakistan more than $2 billion a year in security assistance. to put it mildly, it's been an extremely complicated relationship.
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ali sfan is a former fbi special agent and the author of "the black banners:the inside story of 9/11 and the war against al qaeda." we'll also be talking about that, because he's got an incredible story to tell about torture, even if it's one dick cheney won't like very much. let's get to this whole question. when we got attacked on 9/11 by al qaeda, the united states government under george wmplt bush had to make a decision, how can we find an ally in that region, so we decided we could turn pakistan under move sharf to our side. they escaped, bin laden escaped, but here's the problem. they never were loving us. they never did like us, the pakistan government, and the isi was filled with people who are very islamic in their political attitudes. do we ever have any confidence, will we ever have confidence in the government of pakistan? >> well, absolutely.
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at the very beginning, we needed pakistan in order to attack afghanistan. this is probably the only -- one of the only ways we had to get into afghanistan, and the isi, at the time, we have to remember that the isi's connection with the jihadi types go back to early '80s, when the isi wasn't trusted to funnel the money, to funnel the support and to facilitating the training for mujahadin against the soviets. that relationship continues, and many people in pakistan and against the isi believe that the non-state actor types, the hakani network, the taliban can be an important card in establishing a strategic depth for pakistan and central asia and in afghanistan. >> so they're -- so they're allied with the taliban in afghanistan, but they fight the taliban in pack stankistan? >> well, they're basically the
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creators. the isi created the taliban in afghanistan, and they have a problem with the taliban network in pakistan. however, they are not going, they are not willing to make afghanistan a more secure place for us, or for anyone else. they are only willing to make it a secure place for their national interests and for the isi's national interests, in a way. you know, we have to remember that in countries, we don't have friends, we have national interests. and unfortunately, our national interests and the afghani and the pakistani national interests are not towards the same target. >> who's in power in pakistan? is it the army or zardari's civilian government? >> i mean, i think there's a lot of fractions in pakistan today. you have fractions, even within the isi. and we can see that firsthand, with what's happening in afghanistan. first of all, just a few days ago, we had the assassination of robani, a leader that was
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leading the peace process in afghanistan. also, you know, there was the attack on our embassy. it shows that there is fractions in the -- in the pakistani government, and even fraction in taliban, that do not see eye-to-eye with the civilian government in pakistan. >> what should we do with an isi, an intelligence operation in islamabad, that seems to be, according to mike mullen, our very distinguished and incredible chairman of the joint chiefs. if they're aiding the attacks on our soldiers and our allies in kabul and afghanistan, what do we do with that? >> this is something dangerous. and this is something that has been going on for a long period of time. unfortunately, we didn't do anything before, and it seems that the situation came to a point of no return. remember that just a few months ago, we had a trial here in chicago, and it was of an american citizen who worked with the isi to do surveillance prior to the terrorist attack in mumbai. we basically proved in a court of law here in the united states that elements in the isi were
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directly connected. i think what admiral mullen is doing is something good at this point. i think we need to call pakistan and call the isi and what they are doing and, you know, tell them that this is not acceptable. >> you know, okay, i've got to move ahead of you. the american people are most concerned, like all countries are, with our self-interest. our self-interest is at least concerned, to put it lightly, about the possibility that the pakistan nuclear arsenal falls into the hands of people directly aimed at us, for example, the taliban. what can we do to best ensure, in a dangerous situation, that those arms will not fall in the hands of terrorists or friends of terrorists? >> i like to believe that there are elements in the army, in the military, and elements in the isi probably working with us, and i would like to believe, at least that we have that situation under control, and we have safeguards in place to prevent this kind of -- >> do we? >> i would love to believe that. at least, we've been told that
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we have that. >> wl, we hope we do soufan for "hardball," very much. the name of the book is "the black banners," thanks very much. thanks for coming on. up next, today in the united nations, the palestinians went ahead with their bid for sovereignty for full nationhood over u.s. and israeli objections and submitted their application as a u.n. member state. we'll talk to the israeli ambassador about what the united states should be doing here, what israel's trying to do. this is "hardball" only on msnbc. so, how was school today ?
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to we'll be right back.
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city of washington, and we all respect you. this is a very difficult time for america, for our country. our country looks like it's committed, is that how you see it, to be the lone member of the u.n. security council that's going to stand with israel in opposing statehood now for the palestinians. is that the way it looks? >> good evening, chris, good to be here. listen, we don't know right now. there's a lot of intense diplomacy going on in the u.n. but the fact of the matter is, yes, the united states is committed to blocking a process that will lead to the creation of a palestinian state that, as president obama said, will actually not lead to a real state. it won't contribute to peace. it will contribute to the opposite of peace. the creation of a palestinian state, which is something that we support. we want to be the first to greet the palestinian state in the united nations and other international bodies, but that state has to come about as the product of peace negotiations, not as an impediment to peace negotiations. as president obama has said, there's no shortcut to reaching
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peace. >> why does nobody agree with you. >> -- work out our differences. >> look, you've got some friends in the world that don't hate israel, i don't think the british government hates israel. the french government is pretty pro-israel over the years. i'm surprised the british are a dead card here. why aren't they with us on the israeli side of this very tricky situation? >> again, we don't know they're not with us. we have a close relationship with great britain. we're in a close communication with british leaders. and we hope that they'll see, as president obama has seen, as secretary of state clinton has seen, that the palestinian move to get unilaterally declared, u.n.-recognized statehood will not contribute to peace. and we believe that somedispose that mind initiative have now seen it through and have begun to think about the long-term ramifications which could be extremely destabilizing, not just for the minds, but for other countries in the region as well. >> let me ask you about mahmoud
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abbas. do you think he's a man who wants peace with israel? does he want a two-state solution based on the respect for the sovereignty of israel? >> we hope so, but in an article he published recently in "new york times," he said he was going to create this mind state, but to attack israel more vigorously in various, to delegitimate a mize us, sanction that, he actually wrote that. we hope he changes his mind and comes back to the negotiating table. prime minister netanyahu and said let's not wait a week or a day, let's meet today in the u.n. building, because we're both in the building and let's start working out the difficult issues in order to achieve peace. >> you're an intellectual and writer as well as a diplomat now. you obviously are the delegate from the likud bloc government. i understand your politics, but let me ask about your vision. do you have optimism, as a friend of the united states i
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ask this question, too, do you have optimism somewhere in your lifetime, say, ten years or so, we'll see two people, maybe they're divorced, but living in peace next to each other in the holy land? >> i'm not just a person who's written about history, chris. i've spent about 30 years in the israeli armed forces. i've had three kids in the israeli army. one is still serving in the israeli army today. i have to have that hope. i have to have the hope that my children, my grandchildren won't have to go through some of the very tough experiences that i went to, and someday mind children will not have to go through difficult experiences as well, and we can look forward to a better future. this is what motivates all of us involved in the peace process, the sense there is a possibility of achieving that historic peace, and we're committed to it. >> what's the big block, between now and real statehood the right way for the minds? >> there's one very silly, simple block, sometimes it seems insurmountable, but they have to
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sit down with us we've been a number of efforts to facilitate coming back to the -- he's removed hundreds of checkpoints and road blocks to build peace from the bottom up, the economic type of peace. we hope they'll come back. it seems simple enough, but the minds seem to be having a hard time of making that simple move. >> is netanyahu, isn't he raising the bar a bit by saying the palestinians must not only accept israel as a fellow state in the united nations, but they have to accept its basic jewish nature. is that -- isn't that new? isn't that putting something new in the debate? >> actually not. it was first raised by previous prime ministers. the jewish state is a way that the minds tell us that the peace is permanent, there's an end of claims, an end of conflict. there are mind refugees who would be settled that israel would remain a jewish state.
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>> i understand that argument. >> it's actually extremely important. it goes to the heart of the conflict. in 1947, you u.n. voted to create a two u.n., and the arabs rejected it. >> you know it better than me, but i do know some of it. thank you, ambassador oren. when we return, let me finish with the 50th anniversary of something really great about this country, the peace corps. you're watching "hardball," only on msnbc. ♪ hush, little baby ♪ don't you cry ♪ soon the sun ♪ is going to shine ♪ [ male announcer ] toyota presents the prius family. ♪ walk if i want, talk if i want ♪ [ male announcer ] there's the original one... the bigger one... the smaller one... and the one that plugs in. they're all a little different, just like us. i'm a dad, coach,
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let me finish tonight with the peace corps. in the fall of 1951, a young u.s. congressman went on "meet the press" and told about a recent trip he had made overseas. he told with dismay how disappointed he was with people representing the u.s. in. he found lots of young people who would love to go out and represent the united states, especially in third-world countries. he said he wanted well-rounded young plen and women out there, a better picture of america presented in the world. nine years later, and the last week of the presidential campaign, that same man spoke with his war buddy, red fay, about how things were going. he was worried about how the campaign was ending. he saw president eisenhower jumping in on behalf of vice president nixon, and saw the polls heading nixon's way. then he turned to a happier subject. he told his war buddy with whom he had shared the dangers of the
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south pacific about the speech he was about to give at the cow palace, about something he hoped would prevent more wars. he talked, not to fight. he was so happy with that prospect. this weekend, many who served in the peace corps over these 50 years are coming home to washington to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the legislation establishing it. it's a good time to remember what the peace corps is doing for this country and of course for the people of the countries around the world where the volunteers serve. during the 2000 election, president obama campaigned on doubling the size. today there's a long waiting list of 20 new countries requesting peace corps programs, but the entire annual budget of the petitions corps is less than the budget of the army marching bands. we spend more in five hours in iraq than we do in supporting the 8,700 peace corps volunteers around the world for a year. this is one of a few agencies that democrats and republicans both vote in favor of the back
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30 years ago when his budget people were trying to zero out the peace corps, president reagan said don't cut the peace corps, it's the only thing i get thanked for, and got thanked for last week, and he was referring to a prime minister of a small developing nation. at one time it was a bold experiment. after 50 years, we can safely say that the experiment worked. the volunteers are america's best grass-roots am bass endorse for a very small price tag. the peace corps needs president obama right now, needs serious attention more than ever. it would be great if president obama would get behind the peace corps with great enthusiasm, increase its strength and become its number one recruiter out there. he's just the one to do it. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us, "politics nation" with al sharpton starts right now. >> hey, republicans, this time what happens on the


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