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tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  April 2, 2012 10:00am-11:00am PDT

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women's rights here at home. rush limbaugh, the gender wars and her own future in politics. >> we cannot allow any voices to be given credibility that will would undermine the advances that women have made in our country. >> good day. i'm andrea mitchell live in washington. motel from now, the president will be holding a rose garden press conference with canada's prime minister stephen harper and mexico's president philippe calderone. we'll bring that to you live. but first in our daily fix, as republicans close ranks behind romney, team obama is stepping up its attacks on the likely nominee. >> i think governor romney is a little out of touch. i can't remember a presidential candidate in the recent past who seems not to understand by what he says what will ordinary middle class people are thinking about and are concerned about.
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>> chris cillizza is an msnbc contributor and managing editor of most first of all, take a look at that the "usa today" gallup swing state survey which indicates a growing gender gap for the republicans. mitt romney against barack obama, obama opening his widest lead, 51-42. and that shows a big change in the women surveyed. >> yeah, andrea, hugely. president obama in a head to head match-up in many mid-february against mitt romney in the same 12 states got under 50% of the vote. now he's getting better than 60% of the vote among women under 50. it does not take a rocket scientist or a crack political analyst to figure out that the last six weeks or so of the republican presidential campaign have focused on things like contraception, birth control, women's rights more broadly. these are not topics that you if you were a republican strategist
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you want your candidates talking about. many of the views held by the republican presidential candidates are very unappealing to particularly independent women. i would say young suburban women. the swing voters of the general election. so i think look, romney still has time. we're seven months away from the election. he's clearly been damaged by this protracted republican presidential primary and the likes of santorum and gingrich trying to pull him over to the ideological right. >> it's no coincidence the president has now taped a video for planned parenthood. let's take a look. >> let's be clear here. women are not at interest group. they're mothers and daughters and sisters and wives. they're half of this country. so when some professional politicians casually say that they'll get rid of planned parenthood, don't forget what they're really talking about. eliminating the funding for preventive care ta millions of women rely on and leaving them to fend for themselves.
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>> and we'll be talking more about that coming up. thanks so much, chris sali za. >> thank you. >> the u.s. has taken a big step toward supporting syria's rebel groups blurring the lines over what can be considered nonlethal aid. this at a weekend summit in istanbul, secretary of state hillary clinton acknowledges that the u.s. is providing critical communications equipment to the rebel forces. i sat down with her in istanbul last night to talk about the crisis in syria and the challenged posed by iran. >> you have said that there will be serious consequences if assad does not stop killing his people, that this is the moment of truth. that the time for excuses is over. but short of military intervention, what is going to stop this man? >> well, andrea, i see it as a progression that is too slow and it's very painful to watch the terrible killing continue by the assad regime. but out of this meeting today,
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we have agreed on not only more sanctions, but a means of enforcing them. we now have a sanctions committee. that was quite an accomplishment because this group consists of a lot of countries that are really the mainstays of the syrian economy. we have more humanitarian aid going in. we have an accountability project under way to catalog all of the atrocities that have been done. and we are increasing the various forms of assistance for the syrian opposition. in addition, wes are supporting kofi annan's process but we want it to have a timeline because we don't want to give assad the excuse of being able to negotiate with no end. >> isn't he playing kofi annan for time? he says he's accepting the cease-fire and more killings take place. >> we are worried about that but we know kofi annan will be reporting to the security council tomorrow. i want to hear firsthand from
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him. but we do want to support him by making it clear that he does have a timeline that has to be respected. >> what about saudi arabia and the others who are calling for lethal aid for weapons to the rebels and also now creating multimillion dollar fund which we are told by conference participants will be an inducement? they will give the money to the rebel soldiers as an inducement to try to get more defections from assad's army. is that going to work? >> i think it's a significant step by a number of nations that are trying to support the opposition in one of the numerous ways that we are all helping. we're looking at technical assistance, communications assistance. i met with a group of the syrian national council can opposition, including a young woman who just got out of homs and told us in wrenching terms what it was like being under bombardment by the assad regime.
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and she made it clear, communication is a shuj problem. we are going to be working to provide that and we know that that will be able to get into syria, which will permit better communications inside syria and between syria and supporters outside. >> madame secretary, iran. you seem very skeptical that they are serious about diplomacy as these talks are going to resume in two weeks. do you really think that they are serious, or are they also playing for time and secretly working on their suspected weapons program while these negotiations then drag on? >> well, that's what we're going to find out. we did welcome their outreach to return to the p5 plus 1 negotiations. >> the group of western allies. >> that's right. the group of the five permanent members of the security council including the european union and germany, but also including
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china and russia. and in this arena, china and russia have been quite productive. they, too, already quite concerned about iran continuing a nuclear program and acquiring nuclear weapons. i think president obama's policy zillions absolutely clear. it's prevention, not containment. we're going to do everything we can, but we want to pursue a diplomatic resolution. i think that's the sensible approach to take. >> and on syria today at the u.n. security council, kofi annan and the security council agreed on and april 10th deadline for syria after those concerns were expressed by hillary clinton and the other summit leaders that assad was playing annan for time. coming up, hillary clinton talks about politics, women's rights and her own future plans. and still ahead, president obama's live press conference right here. leaders from mexico and canada, this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. thanks,. mr. clean magic eraser extra power was three times faster on permanent marker.
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with the widening gender gap and the recent political challenges to women's rights here, there's a lot of attention on hillary clinton's future plans. so i asked her about that, about rush limbaugh and a lot more. when meryl streep introduced you at that same conference, she said of you, it is not a simple job to be a role model. it's an enormous burden but that's what we ask of her. are you willing to take that on? >> well, i don't think of myself that way, but i know that i am considered that in the eyes of many people. and it's a great honor. it is a burden. >> the most popular woman in the world for ten years in a row. >> this is a great honor but it also carries with it a lot of responsibility, which i take very seriously. you know, i feel such a great privilege representing my country and in the role of
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secretary of state, dealing with you know, all of the front burner issues like the two we just talked about, syria and iran, but also continuing to advocate for the long-term changes like the fulfillment of women's rights as unfinished business in this century. which is good for america and good for the world. >> there is a lot of unfinished business. you deserve a rest after this trip is over. everyone knows that and a lot of thanks. but there will come a time and there is a growing expectation that you will run for president. and complete the goals that you have for men and women. >> well, andrea, that is also. >> why not? >> it's very flattering but you know, i'm not at all planning to do that. i have no, you know, desire or intention. i want to do the best job i can as the secretary of state for this president. i want to then take some time to get reconnected to the stuff that makes life worth living,
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you know, family, friends, the sort of activities that i enjoy. and i'll do some writing and some speaking and i'm sure i'll be continuing to advocate on these issues. >> and then? >> i mean, rush limbaugh in this campaign, did he go beyond anything that we have previously experienced in the way he attacked a civilian? a young woman who had just spoken up? >> well, i try very hard to stay out of the politics so let me put the campaign and the implications to one side. that is for others to comment on. >> as a woman's leader. >> but as a woman and as someone who can vaguely remember being a young woman. >> and as a mother. >> and as a mother of a young woman of that age and generation, i thought the response was very encouraging. the response from the public, the response in particular from women cutting across all you kinds of categories. the response from advertisers. so i'll let that speak for
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itself. you know we as a nation have every right and in fact, i welcome it to engage in the kind of debate and dialogue that is at the root of who we are as americans. but let's not turn it into personal attacks and insults. we're beyond that. we're better than that, and people in the public eye have a particular responsibility to avoid it. >> chelsea was on a panel with sandra fluke at the 92nd street y and she said rush limbaugh attacked you when you were 30. he attacked me when i was 13. >> i read that she said that. >> well, i think we need to call people out when they go over the line. they're entitled to their opinion but no one is entitled to engage in that kind of you know, verbal assault. let's keep it on the issues. if you disagree on the issues, let's have a vigorous debate. hopefully evidence-based. i would like that to be part of the debate but that's fair game. but whether it comes from the
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right, the left, up, down, wherever it comes from, let's all ask for a return to civility and the kind of debate that really enables citizens to make better decisions. >> i just wanted to thank you very much for the interview. >> thank you. >> thank you for being with us. >> always good to see you andrea. >> and it was at a conference on march 10th in new york that hillary clinton was introduced by actress meryl streep who said that it is not a simple job to be a role model. it's not just being endlessly compassionate and polite and well groomed, it's equal parts of being who we actually are, it's representing all women as our very best selves and it is an enormous burden to be placed on any pair of rounded shoulders but that is what we ask of her. and that led to a standing ovation by about 2,000 women at lincoln center. hillary clinton very much on the minds of a lot of people who think that she is indeed a future candidate in 2016.
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former president bill clinton opened the door to this possibility as well, that his wife could be run. he speak to nbc's luke russert in a cable exclusive. >> you said back in september about somebody who is now the highest rated in terms of popularity, which is secretary of state hillary clinton, about her in 2016 if she wants to come home i'll be happy. if she wants to be, i'll be happy but she has to decide that. >> you know, it's up to her really. i don't think she plans to do it, and i think that you will understand this in 30 years or so. but hillary's worked really hard for 20 years, and it's just been a constant relentless thing. she wants to come home, get a little rest, do some other things. and she thinks she will -- she's told you and everybody else that
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she thinks she'll probably never run for office again. but i've been there. i know what happens when you go through this decompression after years of relentless high pressure activity. and i just think she needs to rest up, do some things she cares about, and whatever she decides to do, i'll support. >> and as the republican party establishment finally is rallying around mitt romney, he faces a growing gender problem for the fall campaign according to that new "usa today" gap lup poll. his best political weapon, his wife ann. joining me is fred malek hosting a fund-raiser featuring ann romney later this months. it is marlene mahlik, the better half of the team who is hosting the ann romney birthday salute here and getting a lot of attention. you are a strong romney supporter and you are experienced within the republican party.
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first of all, is it time for everyone to come together? what is the damage that is being done now by newt gingrich and rick santorum staying in the race and being as aggressive as they are. >> i think we're long past the time when we should be coming together. four years ago, john mccain basically wrapped up the nomination in early march than gave him some running room. >> what rick santorum says he then lost. so what's the hurry? >> the hurry is this. every day that goes by we are facing candidates in the primary who are basically running against each other instead of getting their basic message out about jobs creation, revibing the economy and contrasting that with obama. our day's wasted. we need to get to the point where we stop talking against each other and start talking about what we are for and how to build this country. mitt romney does talk about how he wants to create jobs and grow the economy. frankly the news items that get picked up that are really news, we understand that, are when the candidates kind of contest with each other.
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and then you have a primary, then the next week you have a primary and the news is dominated by that. we need to get that behind us and get behind mitt romney. we need to have him focusing on his message of growing this economy, creating jobs, and regaining our status in the world. >> ann romney as we say is one of the secret weapons, not so secret weapons of mitt romney. she was on wbao radio. this is how she phrased her role in the campaign. >> mitt can get very intense and i have the ability to kind of talk him off the rails sometimes and just say hey, let's look at what's really important. he does the same thing for me. but i have been known at times by my sons that is the name that they call me is the mitts stabilizer. >> at the same time, rick santorum has a new ad out going after both obama and mitt romney
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but particularly going after romney saying he's no better than obama. take a look. >> what if i told you this man's big government mandating health care included $50 abortions and killed thousands of jobs? would you ever vote for him? >> one more thing. what if i told you the man i'm talking about isn't him? it's him. >> as a republican leader. if you could take off your hat a romney supporter, what do you think about that at this point in the campaign? >> it's highly destructive. rick santorum will not be the nominee of this party. he knows that now i'm sure. mitt romney is going to be the nominee. there's nothing well served by this except to hurt mitt romney. this is going to come down to you once we get this over with, you're going to come down to two choices. one, the candidate barack obama who's really never had a real job or created a real job in a private sector against somebody who's fostered companies, starred companies, created tens
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of thousands of jobs, revived a flagging olympics, made it a real beacon for the olympic movement, somebody who's had great success, great skills in building jobs and growing companies in the private sector. i don't think -- i think once he starts contrasting on that and starts talking about his message about how he's going to get that done by keeping taxes low, by stimulating economic growth through the private sector not to creating public sector jobs, you're going to have a whole different picture here. the sooner we can get on with it, the better. >> is romney going to win wisconsin tomorrow? >> he's going to win three states, wisconsin, maryland and d.c. maryland and d.c. with pretty much givens. wisconsin, yes, he'll win that pretty as well well. >> should rick santorum then get out or is it more logical he'll say let's hang on to pennsylvania. it's my home state. i've got a good shot there. >> i think he should get out. the chances are he will lose pennsylvania.
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that would not be a particularly encouraging thing for him. i think the best thing for him to do would be to get out sooner rather than later. who knows. >> fred lalek, who knows is the sub text of the whole campaign. thanks for being with us. learning new statistics about autism and the fight to help the families afflicted. ♪[music plays] ♪[music plays] >> fred malek, who knows the sub purina one beyond. food for your cat or dog.
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and topping the headlines on "andrea mitchell reports" today, nobel peace prize winnering and san sushi has won a seat in myanmar's parliament. she survived years of house arrest during the quarter century she's been fighting for reforms in burma. the national league for democracy swept the elections securing 40 of the 45 available seats and her victory is widely seen as the first step toward a future possible presidential bid. analysts pouring over the new satellite picture afc north korea believe the north is preparing for a rocket launch in the next three weeks. north korea has said it plans to
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launch an observational satellite the space program but there are other suspicions as well. two injured british soldiers rescued from a yacht off the coast of california should arrive in the san francisco bay this afternoon. they were compete competing in a yacht race when the yacht was hit by a runl wave. a rescue boat reached them yesterday. prince harry is being praised for help aginjured polo player during a match in brazil. after he was thrown from his horse, the prince flipped him in a recovery position to prevent choking and massaged his neck till he regained consciousness. player is fine and actually returned to the match. thanks to prince harry. royal assist. the parents of trayvon martin are now asking the justice department to investigate the keep the prosecutor's handling and the probe into their son's death. his mom credits her faith for helping her pursue justice. >> i know beyond a shadow of a doubt that god is in control.
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that's what keeps me moving every day. that's what keeps me moving forward. and for me to understand what i really have to do. i'm doing this for god, i'm doing this for trayvon. it makes me press forward to know we have to get justice for my son so that his death is not in vain. >> joe and reid is managing editor of the and sat down with trayvon's mom this weekend. a lot of developments today. we understand fbi agents are at the gated community there and are -- are at the area there and are beginning to look for evidence because they are now investigating a possible civil rights violation. >> yes, that's correct, andrea. we just learn this had morning from mike iz cough that will fbi agents are now on the location where the shooting took place at the retreat at twin lakes, that housing complex in sanford, florida and that in addition to that, you now have the attorneys for the trayvon martin's parents requesting that the justice department look into new
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developments, development we reported last week that i got from an anonymous source that the state attorney at the time, norman wolf was on site the night police decided to release george zimmerman but in their letter they also say that a family members as they put it in the letter of george zimmerman might have been there. this is a huge development. you have the attorneys making this request that the justice department look into not just the investigation but the sanford police. >> now, it would be pretty unusual to have the family there, to have the other officials there without any explanation or announcement of that previously. >> it would be unprecedented. just the fact alone was confirmed by the spokesman for the police that the police chief, bill lee came to the site of the shooting. he lives in the neighboring county, drove down on sunday night to be on the set of a shooting which is unusual according to sources that understand how the police department works there. then in addition if you had the state attorney who ultimately would take this case before he
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himself recused from the case showing up and talking with the police chief, talking with chief investigations, and then overruling the lead investigator in the case and then releasing george zimmerman, if you add to that that family members were there, it could be a particularly, a big development. >> and i understand that the attorney for george zimmerman has indicated that he will give himself up that he's not hiding from police, if there is an arrest? >> when i was in sanford, what we were always consistently told is that george zimmerman has not fled the country. the police know where he is, know how to get in touch with him. i got the sense he is still in the area. that he hasn't left the state. and i do believe that he is probably with his attorney prepared at any time if let's say the an indictment were to happen or he were charged with something, that he would be accessible to authorities. >> joy-ann reid, thank you very much for helping us from on this fifth anniversary of world autism awareness day, there is more reason than ever
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for alarm. according to the cdc, one in 88 children has autism, a 23% increase in the past two years alone. a 78% rise in the past five years. it is certainly reason to pay attention. and we are. joining us now bob and suzanne wright, founders of autism speaks, the nation's largest advocacy organization. it's great to see you again, suzanne and bob. we know your grandson was diagnosed with autism. so you were arkted personally and then really began this crusade, personal, national crusade tomb try to deal with the problem and bring hip to the families. bob, what do these new statistics from the cdc tell you? >> well, they kind of tell us what we kind of already know. one in 88, one in 54 boys is at a significant increase from the numbers they had the last two years but still not getting to where korea that is probably the gold standard for this kind of
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examination is one in 37, one in 27 boys. my guess is we'll get there with the cdc but it's going to take several years because they have to mod ni the way they do it. it's a terribly difficult discussion because it's so prevalent and it's so heartbreaking for these families most of whom have no insurance or reimbursement. they're out of pocket from 25,000 to $40,000 a year. they lose income because taking care of the kids could be anywhere from 25 to 30. this is america's most expensive bad luck disease condition. and it's unlike everything else you know. we joke and say you know, we want parity with knees. the knee is -- there are thousands of doctors working on knees. all kinds of work has been done on knees and none of that has been done for autism. we don't have the same support and insurance is beautiful. if you have a knee problem, you can go anywhere, any hospital they'll cake care of it right
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away. if you have autism, you're not going to get any treatment like that. we're very concerned about the affordable care act because it's now going to the states. and they recalled essential health benefits that are supposed to be in every one of the insurance policies. i'm getting extremely worried that's not going to be the case with autism. that's another issue we very to deal with. last comment i'll make is this is a generational problem. ewinger people under 25, they seem to be well aware of autism. they're not concerned about you know, the social aspect of it. they're concerned about the care, concerned about treatment. they want to know who should pay for this and you know, older generations, people like myself are much more casual about it. it's somebody else's problem. we don't have to add this to our issues, that sort of a thing. i don't think i have 25 years to go on this to bring these twos generations together. so suzanne and i are going to try our best to do this right now. >> you are doing amazing work, both of you. suzanne, the awareness, i've got
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my blue autism speaks button on today. >> thank you for wearing that, thank you. >> you have really brought this to the fore. it isn't we in the boomer generation have to be more concerned. we have to look to the generations to come. what about the impact on families? >> it's huge. the impact on families is heartbreaking. i know it from my own experience and we're able to afford a lot of things that families aren't. we just came from lighting up the empire state building, and we had the military families there that i had on the intrepid on sunday. we had a big autism salutes military families. the heart break that i have and all of us have is nothing compared i think to the military families diagnosed with autism that are overseas, they come back, they're injured, they have to retire and have no more benefits for autism. it breaks my heart. so we are joining forces with the military to make sure that they get the rights, the services, the treatments, everything that they need. and they were with us when we
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lit the empire state building. we're going to join forces make sure that this happens for our military. >> a command sergeant major in the marine corps, the highest rank of noncommissioned officers in the marine corps. he's responsible for thousands of marines in afghanistan, and he comes home and he has an autistic child. i said to the group, i said you know, he's responsible for our children. and our young people that he has under his command. and who is responsible for taking care of his little girl when he comes home and he's got $5,000, $10,000, $20,000 worth of bills? that's the issue we're trying to deal with. >> the annual cost is estimated to be $137 billion. untreated. >> you know, andrea, i want to tell you, that number is mostly all born by families. it's not -- that's not public money going -- if you divide that by the number of autistic
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people, it's $57,000 a person. you can spend $57,000 in washington, d.c. in a year real easily because it's both the loss of income and the actual cost of services. so nobody else has that problem. that's a real issue. when you get into the sort of thing, that's $136 billion, mostly covered by families themselves. >> all right. what about the stigma attached and the bullying that a lot of these children experience because they can't communicate the way other children communicate and they have other behaviors that sometimes might seem a little bit odd? >> well, i'm hoping with autism speaks awareness campaign that's coming up in about $300 million with the ad council and bbd & o, we have managed to take away a lot of that stigma. my grandson who is right here with us tonight whose brother has it'stism is not ashamed at all to say on the playground, my brother has autism. more people are able do that and come out and be fine about it, just like remember aids, nobody
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wanted to talk about aids or breast cancer. i think when it comes to children, they don't have a voice. so we as adults we have to speak for those children especially children with autism in the families because they do not have a voice. until autism speaks got on radar, i was still amazed, bob was still at nbc at the time. you starred the hidden epidemic of autism. now we have to continue to get the things we need for our community. >> lastly i'd say that the medical community has got to come out. they're so quiet. they should be screaming about this saying this needs to be addressed. the accessory organizations, they should be out here. i feel like we're doing the work of organizations that should have been out ahead of us years and years ago. they are so reluctant to say anything. i can't believe it given the epidemic aspect of what we're dealing with, where are they? >> that is the question. thank you so much, bob and suzanne. you know we love you.
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>> we love you too. >> there is a nation of children and parents grateful to you, and the work continues. >> thank you. >> thank you so very much. >> thank you very much. at any moment now, we'll have live coverage from the president's joint press conference was canada's prime minister stephen harper and mexico's president philippe calderone ahead right here on "andrea mitchell reports." [ sighs ] [ announcer ] all work and no play... will make brady miss his favorite part of the day. ♪ [ upbeat ] [ barking ] [ whines ] that's why there's beneful playful life, made with energy-packed wholesome grains... and real beef and egg. to help you put more play in your day. beneful. play. it's good for you. greetings from the people here sure are friendly but some have had a hard time understanding my accent. so to make sure people get every word of the geico savings message i've been practicing how to talk like a true chicagoan.
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he was taken to two county jails before he was ultimately released but each time he was brought to a new jail, he was subjected to a humiliating he says and definitely intrusive strip search. now, he sued claiming that's unconstitutional to strip search all incoming inmates unless there is some reason to think a person is hiding drugs or guns or was arrested for a violent crime or a firearm offense or having drugs. today by 5-4, the court said no, it's not unreasonable. it said it's hard to run jails and hard to know in advance who is going to be dangerous, especially with 13 million people admitted every year to the nation's jails. .kennedy who wrote the majority opinion said it's impossible to tell whether someone's dangerous or not based on the mere fact that they committed a minor offense. note for example, he said that timothy mcveigh, the oklahoma city bomber was originally arrested for not having a license plate on his car. now, the court did say if jails take the trouble to set up a separate area for people held on the most minor offenses, then
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maybe subjecting everybody to a strip search might be unreasonable. but most jails don't have that sort of accommodation, andrea. >> and that's really a fascinating ruling. again, on a picture perfect day, pete, the setting, you're not standing in front of some fake backdrop. >> no, it's the real thing. it's the real wind, too. it's not a fan. >> well, i'm a fan, different kind of fan of you. pete, thank you very much. coming up, live coverage of the president's joint press conference next. you can see the rose garden. l re the earth's gravitational pull and hurtle us all into space. which would render retirement planning unnecessary. but say the sun rises on december 22nd, and you still need to retire. td ameritrade's investment consultants can help you build a plan that fits your life. we'll even throw in up to $600 when you open a new account or roll over an old 401(k). so who's in control now, mayans?
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introducing gold choice. the freedom you can only get from hertz to keep the car you reserved or simply choose another. and it's free. ya know, for whoever you are that day. it's just another way you'll be traveling at the speed of hertz. hi, everyone. coming up in just 15 minutes on "news nation," we are following breaking news in the trayvon martin case. right now, fbi agents are on the scene of the shooting talking to potential witnesses. we're told they're going door to door. famed prosecutor mar shar clark will join us to answer questions sent to "news nation" by viewers is raring the case. what will mar shar clark say?
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plus, i'll talk with tourre about the media feud over how the story is being covered from twitter to the tv, tourre will join us. then a maryland woman claims she has one of mos winning megamillions tickets but her mcdonald's coworkers tell a new york paper it was a ticket they bought as a group. the maryland lottery director will join us to tell us what he knows about this mcdonald's mess. >> and what political story will be making headlines in the next 24 hours? that's next right here on "andrea mitchell reports." ♪ spread a little love today
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and which political story will make headlines in the next 24 hours? contributor and managing editor of post chris cillizza joins us again. we understand mitt romney has responded at a news conference today in green bay, wisconsin to joe biden, his criticisms yesterday that mitt romney is out of touch. i wanted to play that. >> how would you respond to that that you're out of touch with
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the average american? >> well, my guess is i get a chance to be with a lot more average americans every day than he does. as i average americans every day than he does. as i go across the country and as my wife does, we understand something i think this president and vice president don't. that is that their policies have not succeeded. >> so you know, it's now game on in terms of the general election. this is no longer a primary campaign as far as romney is concerned and as far as the white house is concerned, clearly. >> the white house, joe biden, president obama, have been resistant for a long time to sort of mention mitt romney's name. you never know if he will be the nominee or not. now that they're doing it, it seem the general election has effectively begun. i know rick santorum is going. newt gingrich is running but the race is moving on. what you just saw outlined there, both in what biden had to say and what romney's response was. that's the election. democrats will cast mitt romney as an elite out of touch too
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wealthy, doesn't care about the middle class. romney will say look at the past four years and the policies that this administration have instituted. has that helped the middle class or hurt the middle class? we can fast forward seven months. we'll be about the exact same dynamic. it is who makes the argument better, who is more believable. who do the american people ultimately side with. that's the dynamic of it in two very quick sound bites. and mitt romney does not have very many news conferences. nor does he do very many network interviews. so there were other moments there. this came from an apparent ron paul sport because he was seen later, holding a ron paul sign outside and he asked mitt romney a question about the book of mormon. >> in the mormon book it says there was a blackness upon all the children -- >> i'm sorry. we're not going to have a discussion about religion in my view, but if you have a question i'll be happy to answer your question. >> my question, is do you believe it is a sin for a white man to marry a black --
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>> no. next question. >> to clarify, because it was off mike, they had taken the mike away, the questioner asked him, whether he believes it is a sin for there to be interracial marriage. and he said no. >> you know, the thing with mitt romney's mormonism, i just don't see it being brought up by either the democrat, the white house, president obama, his official re-election campaign, super pacs, that sort of thing. it is a fact. mitt romney is a mormon. as he gets introduced to a broader swath of the american public, aren't aware of it, will become aware of it. is there a outer loop of people who may not vote for him because of that? sure. is it something that will be talked about by the other side? i cannot imagine so. i feel like about religion, particularly in pejorative terms, as that question seemed to suggest. it is just a no-win situation for the other side. i would say the same thing, if a
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democrat, a mormon who was a democrat was running for president and we had a republican in the white house. it is just territory that i don't think you need to go into and it is very dangerous to wade into. >> as we see the president accompanied by the mexican president and canada's prime minister, coming out in the rose garden. here's the president. >> it is my pleasure to welcome two great friends and partners. president calderon of america and prime minister harper of canada. i've worked with stephen and felipe on many occasions. we joined our international partners from apec to the g-20. from our last summit in guadalajara, we remember felipe's hospitality, and that of the mexican people, including some very good mariachi -- >> and mexican food. >> some tequila, if i'm not mistaken. i can't reciprocate the music
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but felipe, stephen and i are proud to welcome you here today. between us, we represent nearly half a billion citizens, from nivut to southern mexico. in between the diversity of our peoples and cultures is extraordinary. wherever they live, they wake up every day with similar hopes. to provide for their families to be safe in their communities, to give their children a better life. in each of our countries, the daily lives of our citizens are shaped profoundly by what happens in the other two. that's why we're here. today we focused on our highest priority, creating a jobs and opportunities for our people. the united states, our business have created nearly 4 million new jobs. confidence is up and the economy is getting stronger, but with lots of folks still struggling
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to find work and pay the bills, we are doing everything we can to speed up the recovery. that includes boosting trade with our two largest economic partners. as president, i've made it a priority to increase our exports and i'm pleased that our exports to canada and mexico are growing faster than our exports to the rest of the world. in fact, last year trade in goods with our two neighbors surpassed $1 trillion for the first time ever. this trade supports some 2.5 million american jobs and i want more trade supporting even more jobs in the future. so today, prime minister harper led us in a very good discussion about how our three countries can improve our competitiveness. we agreed to continue making our borders more efficient and more secure so it's faster and cheaper to travel and trade. we're expending, expanding cooperation to create clean energy jobs and combat climate change. an area in which president
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calderon and mexico have been a real leader. i'm pleased to announce that our three nations are launching a new effort to get rid of outdated regulations that stifle job creation. here in the united states, our efforts to cut red tape and ensure smart regulations will help achieve savings and benefits to businesses, consumers and our country of more than $100 billion. and we're already working to streamline and coordinate regulations with canada on a bilateral basis so now our three nations will sit down, go through the books and eliminate more regulations that will make our joint economies stronger. this is especially important, by the way, for our small and medium size businesses which when they start exporting, often start with mexico and canada. so this is going to help create jobs and keep us on track to meet my goal of doubling u.s. exports. more broadly, i reiterated my commitment to comprehensive
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reform which would be good for business. i'm pleased that canada and mexico have also expressed an interest in joining the transpacific partnership. consultations with our tpp partners are now underway on how new members can meet the high standards of this trade agreement which could be a real model for the world and i very much appreciated president calderon updating us on preparations for the next g-20 summit which he will be hosting in june. our other major focus today was the security that our citizens deserve. criminal gangs and narco traffickers pose a threat to each of our three nations and each of our nations has a responsibility to meet that threat. in mexico, president calderon has shown great courage in standing up to the traffickers and cartels and we've sped up the delivery of equipment and assistance to support those efforts. here in the united states, we've increased cooperation on our southern border and dedicated new resources to reducing the
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southbound flow of money and guns and reduced the demand for drugs in the united states, which helps fuel, helped to fuel this crisis i. today each of us reaffirmed our commitment to meeting this challenge together because that's the only way we'll succeed. beyond our borders, these cartels and traffickers pose an extraordinary threat to our central american neighbors so we're teaming up, defense ministers from our three countries met last week as a group for the first time ever and we'll be coordinating our efforts more closely than ever. especially when it comes to sporgt central america's new strategy on citizen security, which will be discussed at the summit of the americas in colombia next week. again i want to thank stephen and felipe for being here. when i came to office, i pledged to seek new partnerships with our friends in the americas. relationship of equality built on mutual interest and mutual respect.
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that's what we've done. and it wouldn't have been possible without the leadership and purpose that these two leaders have brought to all our efforts including our efforts today. as a result, i believe our nations and our citizens will be more secure, more prosperous, and in a better position to give their children the lives that they deserve. with that, let me turn it over the president calderon. >> thank you, president obama. [ speaking spanish ] >> translator: your excellency, president obama, great honorable stephen harper, prime of canada, ladies and gentlemen of the press. misters ambassadors, legislators, friends, first of all, i would like to thank president barack obama for his extraordinary hospitality and that of his government in