tv The Last Word MSNBC April 30, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT
empire state building seated back to the world trade center, the title of new york's proudest building, new york's first face to the sky. best new thing in the world today. now it's time for "the last word with lawrence tomorrow may the 1st is the first anniversary of the death of osama bin laden. >> i said i'd go after bin laden, and i did. >> the gop says bin laden's death shouldn't be used for politics. >> he managed to put it into a divisive, partisan and political attack. >> sign of a desperate campaign. >> we wouldn't do something like that. >> this election will also determine how america responds to the continuing danger of terrorism. >> this is the man who wants to be want commander in chief of
the u.s. armed forces. >> leadership is the most important. >> armed with what? spitballs. >> almost anything is fair game. >> i'll never forget that image. >> they had eight years to do it. >> it's mission accomplished, isn't it? >> i said i'd go after bin laden when we had a clear shot at him, and i did. >> this is part of the president's record. >> jimmy carter would have given that order. >> jimmy carter made a gutsy call that didn't pan out and obama made a gutsy call that did. >> you have to give him credit. >> what you are your record says you are. >> i said we'd go after bin laden if he had a clear shot at him and i did.
>> how do you like them apples? >> it was a year ago this week that president obama ordered the successful navy s.e.a.l. mission to get osama bin laden, and suddenly the dead osama bin laden has become issue one in the presidential campaign. >> president obama is not convinced. >> i just recommend that everybody take a look at people's previous statements in terms of whether they thought it was appropriate to go into pack -- pakistan and take out bin laden. i assume that people meant what they said when they said it. that's been at least my practice. i said that i'd go after bin laden if we had a clear shot at
him, and i did. if there are others who have said one thing and now suggest they do something else, then i'd go ahead and let them explain. >> here is what senator barack obama said during his first presidential campaign in 2007 about being willing to violate if necessary pakistan's sovereignty to get osama bin laden. >> if we had actionable intelligence about high-valued targets and president musharraf won't act, we will. >> just four days after that, the 2007 version of presidential candidate mitt romney said, i do not concur in the words of barack obama in a plan to enter an ally of ours.
tonight on fox news romneyworld continued to attack the obama campaign for using the successful mission to get osama bin laden. >> to now take credit for something that any pred would do is indicative of the kind of campaign we're under, we're seeing, and i've had the great honor of serving in the company of heroes. you know the thing about heroes? they don't brag. >> the president anticipated that sort of line of attack earlier today. >> i hardly think that you've seen any excessive celebration taking place here. i think that people -- the american people rightly remember what we as a country accomplished in bringing to justice somebody who killed over 3,000 of our citizens. and it's a mark of the
excellence of our intelligence teams and military teams a political process that worked. >> tomorrow, and this is really happening, mitt romney actually has a campaign event scheduled in new york city with rudy guiliani to mark the anniversary of the killing of osama bin laden. they will no doubt be explaining how rudy guiliani and george w. bush deserve all the credit for getting osama bin laden. >> i don't know where he is. i don't sfend that much time on him, to be honest with you. >> and romney and giuliani will surely read mind voters of the republican party's honorable record of never trying to gain political advantage by questioning the justice of democrats on national security. >> it's absolutely essential that eight weeks from day on november 2nd we make the right choice. if we make the wrong choice, the
danger is that we'll get hit again, and that we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating from the standpoint of the united states. >> joining me now democratic strategist and msnbc's contributor, salon.com and msnbc analyst steve cornaki and steve xlenlz. thank you for joining me. crystal, the reason i wanted to show that dick cheney tape is that was a new form of president aal campaigning in my memory for dick cheney to say in 2004, if you elect john kerry, we will be attacked again, presumably because john kerry's judgment on national security was so horrible. for republicans to be playing this game of outrage today at the president's campaign simply saying, look, this is what he actually did as an amaze turn-around from where dick cheney was in 2004. >> not only where he was in 2004
but right before president obama was elected and even after he was elected where esdz the same thing. that he felt that president obama's policies would make us less safe from a terrorist attack, and now suddenly republicans have decided now that they're on the losing end of foreign policy really frankly for the first time in quite a long time. suddenly they don't want to talk about this. this is too political w. it's an unbelievable turn of disgusting hip pock see that does not pass the laugh test. they ran on the war on terror. they ran on 9/11. the event with rudy guiliani tomorrow just calls up all of this once again, so i think it's obvious that republicans, when it's on their side and when they feel they can benefit from it, are perfectly happy to talk about foreign policy successes. >> let's take a look at the video posted on the obama campaign website that got this
whole conversation started on friday. >> that's one thing george bush said that was right, the president is the decider in chief. nobody can make that decision for you. >> steve clemons, what seemed to be at issue is what would mitt romney have done if presented with the same situation and the record of presidents preceding president obama on this kind of decision would be at best to lob a rocket in fl and hope for the best. >> i think that the real truth is to be fair to mitt romney for a minute is there were advisers around president barack obama that felt like mitt romney did. i think that makes the gap and difference between romney and obama so important, is that obama essentially looked at a lot of data considered many alternative views and went to a
very dangerous place that if he failed i think we'd be pondering the end of the obama presidency. we also have to remember part of what we don't talk about the media is the bush cheney administration made a decision to squeeze down the resources committed to chasing bin laden as they were distracted and into iraq. ed gillespie was right to some sdree that saddam hussein had a different feature that soldier dam hussein was more important as a national security target than osama bin laden. when obama came in, he said that was the wrong decision in going after bin laden who was the marquis terrorist of the day and made americans feel unsafe. his ongoing presence wouldn't have allowed to us change our strategic deployments. he was a permit fixture in the industrial conflict if you will. obama's choice was very brave, so i think it's fair given what we know about romney from this previous statements that might
have been a very different choice for him. >> steve, it's fair given the previous republican administration, they had a chance to go after osama bin laden in tora bora and they chose not to. you then eventually had president obama going on television -- sorry. president bush going on television saying i don't think it's that important, i don't think about it. actually completely giving up the idea of actually getting osama bin laden, and then when the decision came that he was gettable, the tactical choice of lobbing a missile in there or go in with a crew that can verify you can actually get them. that's what president clinton said was the incredibly important decision and there were plenty of people in the situation room saying let's go the easy way with the missile. >> absolutely. there were people saying that there were plenty of people in 2007. you have that quote saying what obama did going into pakistan and getting bin laden i wouldn't do.
what mitt romney said in 2007 a lot of people were telling that. in '07 obama was naive when he said that. obama went out on a limb to make that decision. you can make an argument here that the obama campaign should not be -- it is actually making this a little too political in the sense that not only did they put a video out on the one year anniversary but inserted into the video a direct contrast with mitt romney. on a scale of politicizing this thing, that's nothing prepared to last decade. there's a broader point here. look what mitt romney has said for this entire campaign. his entire foreign policy argument against barack obama boils down it to the man is weak. he talks about it in every speech about foreign poechl. mitt romney comes back to the notion to travel the world apologizing for america to our
enemies. it's patently false. if that's the came pain mitt romney runs, i think it's entirely defensible on the one-year anniversary you make that contrast especially when romney did say exactly what they're saying. >> one of the things i was taught when i started running for congress is voters judge candidates based on three factors, stretch, trust and caring. wo do you trust and who do you think cares about you the most and who do you think is strongest. obama is clearly winning the caring and the trust battle. he is winning the strength battle. if he has all three characteristics on lockdown, where is mitt romney going to go? he sort of has to try to undermine this argument. this goes back to the hillary clinton ad, the 3:00 a.m. phone call and who do you want answering that call? this is absolute proof that president obama has gotten that call.
of course, romney's campaign wants to diminish that and paint it in the way they do in their narrative as a weak leader leading from behind all that stuff coming out of the campaign. >> krystal, quickly, a last word on this tactically. the obama re-election campaign posting this on their website struck me as a deliberate, hoped for provocation of republicans and the romney campaign to do exactly what they are doing. >> oh, they're so sorry, lawrence, that the republicans are talking to much about how the president killed osama bin laden. i really wish they'd stop talking about how the president killed osama bin laden. it's really upsetting up. >> steve, crystal, thank you very much for joining me tonight. >> thank you. >> coming up, is bill clinton the best surrogate speaker for the obama presidential campaign. jonathan and e.j. join me. and the president gave a shout-out to lily ledbetter this
weekend, the woman whose name is at the top of the very first bill that president obama signed into law. she's more than just the face of the fair pay act. lily ledbetter joins me tonight. paul ryan is in the rewrite tonight. we caught him in a lie about being a follower of an atheist political philosopher. and the best of the president's jokes at the white house correspondents dinner this weekend. that's coming up. i went to a small high school. the teacher that comes to mind for me is my high school math teacher, dr. gilmore. i mean he could teach. he was there for us, even if we needed him in college. you could call him, you had his phone number. he was just focused on making sure
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we caught paul ryan in a lie. the republican congressman is lying about his relationship with a right wing political philosopher. we will show you the truth in paul ryan's own words. that's in the rewrite. if you're one of those folks who gets heartburn and then treats day after day. well, shoot, that's like checking on your bgers afr they're burnt! [ male announcer ] treat your frequent heartburn by blointhacid with priloseotc. and don't get artburn in the first place! [ male announcer ] one pill a day. 24 hours. zero artburn. avoid bad.fats. don't go over 2000... 1200 calories a day. carbs are bad. carbs are good. the story keeps changing. so i'm not listening... to anyone but myself. i know better nutrition when i see it:
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decision to kill osama bin laden in the navy s.e.a.l. attack instead of firing a missile into bin laden's compound and hoping for the best. in a new obama re-election campaign video. at their first joint fund-raising appearance of this campaign season, the former president introduced the current president after saying this. obama's got an opponent who joining me now is a "washington post" columnist and senior fellow at the brooks institute. he's an msnbc political analyst. and you have both certified that you are not on steroids tonight. >> i promise. >> guaranteed. >> e.j., this it emergence of bill clinton suddenly starting with that campaign video on friday and then the fund-raiser
is giving a lot of people signs that bill clinton is into this campaign in an even more solid way than he was in joining the obama general election campaign last time. >> i think it's true. there are several reasons for it. one, we can never say this. i think the issues matter to him. when you think back to his fight with gingrich over cuts in medicare, medicaid, education and the environment, that famous m-2/e-2, the paul ryan budget makes the gingrich budget look like something bernie sanders proposed. the issue really matters. second, hillary clinton is secretary of state he. she is implicated in this and had to make bill clinton happy she's secretary of state. i think that has something to do with it. the third is obama needs clinton right now. he needs clinton to reach for example to some of the big contributors whom obama didn't give to the super-pac.
i think the fact that bill clinton knows that obama knows he needs him for stuff is a motivator for bill clinton. >> bill clinton has an astonishingly high approval rating for someone so intensely hated by the right and never won in a landslide. he's viewed favorably by 67% of voters against 29% -- only 29% who view him unfavorably. you just compare that just for george w. bush viewed favorably by 52% and viewed unfavorably by 54%. this favorable rating for bill clinton has is not an automatic for ex-presidents. >> no, it's not. remember when president clinton was impeached? remember his approval rating at the time? people were mystified by how this person who was caught in a life, impeached, globally
embarrassed and his approval rating was really relatively high. when he left office, he left the country with a surplus. he left the country relatively at people. it seemed like the sky was the limit, and i think there's a lot of nostalgia behind the fact when bill clinton was president, things seemed to be okay and the economy was great. everyone was doing just fine. he happened to be the best politician of his generation to have run for president and won two terms in office. to have president barack obama in office with enough intestinal fortitude and just self-confidence to allow someone that popular to articulate the message times better than the president himself as we saw during that press conference, i believe, it was a year ago as we see the video right now.
then, remember, what happened. president obama said michelle's waiting for me upstairs at some of the parties. i'm going to leave bill clinton here to explain things to you. this synergy we're seeing, i don't think it just burst onto the scene. these two have been talking to each other for a very long time. >> and e.j., it feels like there's a tactical challenge from the obama re-election team to the romney election team, simply saying to them here's our surrogate. who do you have? >> no. i think that's absolutely right, and the point you made earlier about drawing the romney folks into a discussion of bin laden, which can only help obama. having obama there -- having bill clinton be the nature rater brought more attention to this. bring out your last republican president, george w. bush, and rom knee doesn't want to do that. jeb bush may be the strongest potential vice presidential candidate but for his last
night, given george w.'s approval ratings. >> is there any bench there in republican world for surrogates getting out there on the trail that in any way could compare with bill clinton, they've got john mccain happy to go out there and speak. i don't see who they have who can play on this level. >> i don't see it. e.j. raises a good point. who do you want to put out there? president george w. bush who couldn't wait to get out of washington fast enough and made it clear he's not interested in getting into the fray, the at least until his presidential library is ready. so no, the republicans don't have a bill clinton at all. >> nobody does, okay? >> ej and john, thank you both very much for joining me tonight. >> good to be with you. coming up, she launched the lawsuit that resulted in the fair pay act.
the first piece of legislation president obama signed into law. tonight, lily ledbetter joins me. paul ryan tries to rewrite his relationship with an extreme right wing political philosopher not because of her heartless cruelty but because she was an atheist. that's coming up. [ male announcer ] with six indulgently layered desserts, all at 150 calories or less, there's definitely a temptations for you. unless you're one of those people
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relationship with a woman when some critics said he wasn't a good catholic. that's in the rewrite. the woman who inspired the first piece of legislation president obama signed into law. president obama played comedian and chief at the annual white house correspondents dinner this weekend. we'll show you the highlights including exactly where the president and vice president of hollywood were sitting. george clooney and steven spielberg, and i'm not going to get into trouble near los angeles tonight by saying which one of them is the president and which one of them is the vice president. of hollywood. that's coming up. a great pres. so at&t showed corporate caterers how to better collaborate by using a mobile solution, in a whole new way. using real-time photo sharing abilities, they can create and maintain high standards, from kitchen to table.
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change is the first bill i signed into law. a law that says women deserve an equal day's pay for an equal day's work. a law that says our daughters should have the same opportunities as our sons. a law named for a courageous woman, lily ledbetter, my dear friend is right here today. that's what change is, and it happened because you. as long as i'm president, i'll keep moving forward. you can count on that. you don't have to take my word for it. you have my signature on it, because something like standing
up for equal pay for equal work isn't something to get back to you on. it's the first law that i signed. >> that was president obama at the dnc's women's leadership forum talking about the lily ledbetter fair pay act. here was the romney campaign's response when it was first asked about the lily ledbetter law. >> does governor romney support the lily ledbetter act? >> we'll get back to you on that. >> five days later when candidate romney himself was asked would he have signed the lily ledbetter act, romney could not bring himself to simply say yes, he would have signed it. the best romney could do is say he wouldn't try to repeal it.
it has been a remarkable journey for lily ledbetter from being born in a house without running water or electricity, to have her name on the first bill signed into law. she spent the day campaigning for president obama in new hampshire. lily ledbetter joins me now. she has written a new book, "grace and grit" about her experience. also with us is karen finney. lily ledbetter tell us the story about how you discovered that working in the tire factory you'd worked in for so many years you were actually being paid significantly less than men doing the same job. >> after 19 years of working for goodyear tire and rubber, someone gave me anon muss tip on a note showing my pay versus the three white males that had the
exact same job, and the difference in my pay and each one of theirs was more than 40% less than theirs. i was 40% less than what they were earning. that not only faekted my take-home pay then, but it does today. that the short changed me quite a great deal, and my family suffered not because i didn't work, not because i didn't have a good job but simply because the company i worked for chose not to follow the federal laws. >> and you then took this case to court and won compensation for the lost salaries and damages beyond that, but the circuit court of appeals overturned it for the most technical of legal reasonables,
which is the statute of limitations which is the time frame within which you filed your suit. that's what president obama addressed in the act that was passed in your name opening up that statute of limitations to a reasonable amount of time. if you had that statute of limitations in place when you went after this, you would have been successful in court. actually, they tell me that the law before was always the precedent had been if ufs still receiving a check five jults according to justice ruth bader ginsburg said they changed the law. she said this is a terrible ruling, and she challenged congress to pick up the ball. she said it's in your court. now you change this back to where it should be, and it took
us 18 months working in washington, lobbying and working for the bill gaining support. it was the first bill than the president signs into law in 2009. >> karen finney, it's a dramatic judicial and political story with the only woman justice at the time reading her dissent, specifically saying, congress, look, this is a wrong interpretation. get to work on this. i think it's remarkable that that whole story was achieved in 18 months and they could get it to the point where the president could sign it. more remarkable that the romney campaign had no idea how to respond to it when it was first raced to him. >> even worse it seemed like the romney campaign didn't know or understand the question that sam stein was asking. >> dead silence in response to that question. >> and this is part of it.
women like myself, i mean, we owe lily ledbetter and other women who came before us such a debt of gratitude. my mother did a wage gap study in the '80s. i watched her night after night pour through pages of documents to figure out what was really going on. those are the kinds of systemic problems that women actually still face. that's what president obama was talking about when he held the summit recently at the white house on some of these women's issues. fundamentally that's not what we hear from mitt romney and his campaign team. they don't understand in addition to all the social issues and putting aspirin between our knees, which i know is foster friess, this idea that there are still structural challenges that women face in the workplace. the lily ledbetter act, important first step but in terms of access to capital, women are still paid less than men. these are some of the important economic issues women are still
dealing with, and i haven't heard a good answer from them suggesting they understand any of that. >> lily ledbetter, what would you say to both women and men with your kind of work experience in a goodyear tire factory, that kind of hard, daily work? what they should be thinking about when they consider their vote for the presidency? >> they need to consider who will stand up for them and their families. you see the ledbetter bill was the american families. it's really a fundamental american right. mitt romney evidently based on his actions and his noncommittal statement, he is not going to stand up for the women and the families across this nation. the outcry when my ruling came out from the supreme court about my case, it shook this nation from coast to coast and stirred people up. i don't think people have forgotten that. today in new hampshire, every stop i made i had tremendous attendance.
people are enthused, and i believe they understand. they don't have to wait and say, i'll get back to you. i think the people i met here today in new hampshire, they know exactly who they'll vote for because the president, he's got a plan to improve the lives of the american families. that's where we need and want to go. >> lilly ledbetter, it's an honor to have you join us tonight. thank you both for joining me. >> thank you, lawrence. thank you. >> thank you. >> coming up, paul ryan says he loves her, then paul ryan says he hates her. only one of those things can be true. paul ryan's relationship with a right wing political philosopher is next in the rewrite. the president did his annual routine at the white house correspondents dinner. we'll show you all of his best jokes coming up. and pepperoni breath?
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on tonight's episode paul ryan has to choose between a woman and not his wife and his devotion to his catholic faith. so what has he decided to do? lie about his relationship with the woman, of course. that's next in the rewrite. everyone in america depends on the postal service. i get my cancer medications through the mail. now washington, they're looking at shutting down post offices coast to coast.
closing plants is not the answer. they want to cut 100,000 jobs. it's gonna cost us more, and the service is gonna be less. we could lose clientele because of increased mailing times. the ripple effect is going to be devastating. congress created the problem. and if our legislators get on the ball, they can make the right decisions. i'm an expert on softball. and tea parties. i'll have more awkward conversations than i'm equipped for because i'm raising two girls on my own. i'll worry about the economy more than a few times before they're grown. but it's for them, so i've found a way. who matters most to you says the most about you. massmutual is owned by our policyholders so they matter most to us. massmutual. we'll help you get there. in tonight's episode of the politics of religion, republican congressman paul ryan rewrites
his relationship with the conservative hero and atheist ian rand. congressman ryan happily proclaimed his devotion to rand until he got criticized about that recently from a catholic perspective. catholics united issued a statement he saying we question why ryan as a self-professed catholic would put the teachings of ultra capitalist ayn rand of whom he has spoken glowingly before the teaching of jesus and the church. rand, whose doctrine states self-sacrifice for one's friend, a core tenet of christianity, is akin to slavery. teaches the value of the self over all others. in her world view self-interest and greed take the place of a higher power. that's right. ayn rand denied the existence of god, and paul ryan worshipped her.
father thomas j. reese a jesuit told the post that ryan's budget appears to reflect the values of his favorite philosopher rather than the gospel of jesus christ. her cal to selfishness and antagonism arant thet cal to the values of compassion and love. no democratic party attack on the ryan budget has shaken paul ryan in any way. no attack on the ryan budget from nobel prizewinning economist paul krugman or any other economist has shaken paul ryan in any way but the catholic attack now has paul ryan running scared. and he is trying to run away from ayn rand. paul ryan told a laughingly compliant writer at the country's oldest conservative
propaganda outlet, the national review, that the idea that he's an ayn rand devotee as paul krugman has called him is simply, quote, an urban legend, end quote. ryan also said, i reject her philosophy. it's an atheist philosophy. and there ryan proved once again that there is nothing, nothing more powerful than the politics of religion. as soon as catholics started reminding everyone that ryan's guiding light was an atheist, ryan had to turn on her. he had to deny how closely he followed her teachings. he had to deny how much the merciless view of economics shaped his view. he had to deny making ayn rand's book and many books required reading for his congressional staff. he had to deny everything he's
ever said about ayn rand simply because she was an atheist. if ayn rand has been a christian of any denomination, paul ryan would not have been forced to disown her. in this age of neanderthal walking, he's thought as the smart republican by everyone on the side of the aisle. it's by the smartest republicans in and out of elected office. paul ryan, the smart republican. the paul ryan's new lie about his relationship to ayn rand is the stupidest think he could possibly try to get away with. i reject her philosophy, he now, says. it's an atheist philosophy. well, that's it, pure and simple. i reject her philosophy. case closed, right.
how could paul ryan be so stupid to get away with that after he was the keynote speaker for the at last so he had, a group of ayn rand worshippers who have named their group after the title of one of her most famous novel atlas shrugged. is paul ryan so stupid the smart paul ryan, is he so stupid that he doesn't know that we have witnesses to that speech. that each person in that audience for his worshipful speak about ayn rand is an available witness to us. is paul ryan so stupid -- is paul ryan the thinking man's republican -- is he so stupid that he doesn't know we have the audio recording. >> i just want to speak to you about ayn rand and what she meant to me in my life and the
fight engaged in congress. i group up on ayn rand. everybody does the soul-searching to find out bho they are and what they believe. you learn about yourself. i grew up reading ayn rand and it taught me what i am and what my beliefs are. it inspired me so much, that it's required reading in my office for my staff. people say i need to start with atlas shrugged. there's a big debate about that, and we move on. but, the reason i got involved in public service by and large if i credited one thinker or person it would be ayn rand. the fight we're in here, make no mistake about it, is a fight of individualism versus collectivism. when you look at the 20th century experiment with collectiveness that ayn rand more than anything else did a good job of articulating the pit falls of statism and
collectivism. you can't find another thinker or writer who did a better job of describing and laying out the moral case for capitalism than ayn rand. >> tonight, the ayn rand case is closed, and paul ryan is a proven liar. he has said two things about ayn rand. only one of which can be true. i leave it to you to decide which one is a lie, his most recent statement about ayn rand to the national review. quote, rye jekts her philosophy or this? >> you can't find another thinker or writer who did a better job of describing and laying out the moral case for capitalism than ayn rand. wake up! that's good morning, veggie style. hmmm.
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saturday night was oscar night in washington. the night oscar winners get to live the dream of having dinner with rick stengle, the editor of "time," while listening to the president of the united states tell jokes and sneaking a peek at kim kardashian to see if she gets any of the jokes. it was the annual white house correspondents dinner. >> my fellow americans, we gather during a historic anniversary. last year at this time, in fact, on this very weekend we finally delivered justice to one of the world's most notorious individuals. [ applause ] >> it's great to be here this evening in the vast, magnificent
hilton ballroom or what mitt romney would call a little fixer-upper. we also both have degrees from harvard. i have one. he has two. what a snob. recently his campaign criticized me for slow jamming the news with jimmy fallon. in fact, i understand governor romney was so incensed he asked his staff if he could get some equal time on the merv griffin show. still, i guess governor romney is feeling pretty good about things because he took a few hours off the other day to see "the hunger games." some of you have seen it? it's a movie about people who court wealthy sponsors and then brutally savage each other until only one contestant is left standing.
i'm sure this was a really great change of pace for him. >> joining me now is ryan lizo, washington correspondent for "the new yorker" and our correspondent for the white house correspondents dinner. i took the weekend off here in los angeles. i had family obligations, and i got to say, it feels like a two-week vacation to skip it. things get started at 6:00 at saturday night and tammy hadad's brunch on saturday. now she start friday night parties and thursday night events? >> thursday night events now. it's a four-day event now. you have the prepartying, the pre-prepartying. it goes through the whole weekend. man, watching those clips, and i haven't watched it since being there, you know, supposedly this is this event that white house
staff says the president, why does he go to this thing? he doesn't like this thing. if president obama was not enjoying delivering those lines, he was really faking it then, he looked like he was in his element loving it. >> he's the best i've seen out of him, and he's had very good competition. president clinton did well at it. president george w. bush actually had some great comedic nights at that podium. the first one, almost all of the jokes were jokes about him being stupid, and they were really, really smart jokes about president bush being stupid. i thought he was very brave to tell me them. president obama really has some real stand-up talent. >> he's fantastic. his timing is tremendous. the delivery is great. i mean, i thought jimmy -- it's a very hard crowd if you're a standup comedian because it's a very insider crowd. the humor is in this narrow range. if you go too far, the crowd
gets a little uncomfortable. if you don't quite understand the inside jokes, the crowd sort of looks down upon you. so it's a really tough audience. seth meyers famously last year was brilliant and very well received. i thought kimmel was about 60%, 70% of his jokes were fantastic, and he probably could have thrown out 30%, 40% of them. obama nailed it and his timing was tremendous. the one criticism of obama is clinton and bush did a lot of self-depp indicating humor. every every joke was at their own experience. obama uses the night a little differently. he uses it to just sort of stick the shiv into the people nailing him all year long. you can tell he loves it. >> ryan, you haven't made me wish i was there. thank you very much. >> thank you. tomorrow night, on "the last word," alec baldwin joins me.