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tv   Way Too Early  MSNBC  December 14, 2012 2:30am-3:00am PST

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>> ambassador susan rice dropping a bomb last night in an interview with brian williams. good morning, i'll bill karins. this is "way too early." thanks for being with us on this friday, december 14th. there's a lot to get to. president obama and speaker boehner may have reached an impasse. that straight ahead. this is how legislation gets passed in ukraine. take notes, congress. no, we don't want that the. we'll have a full play by play later in the show. first, a bombshell on capitol hill yesterday. susan rice will not be the next secretary of state. the u.s. ambassador to the united nations withdrew her name from consideration yesterday after a standoff with republicans led by senator mccain. who vowed to block her nomination. after notifying the president, rice sat down with nbc's brian williams to explain her decision. >> i made the decision that it was the best thing for our
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country, for the american people that i not continue to be considered by the president for nomination as secretary of state because i didn't want to see a confirmation process that was very prolonged, very politicized, very distracting and very disruptive, because there are so many things we need to get done as a country. >> the controversy surrounding rice stems from her september appearance on the sunday morning talk shows where she repeatedly characterized a terror attack against the u.s. consulate in benghazi as a protest gone wrong. a statement from the white house maintains her comments were based on intelligence she had at the time. rice explained why it was she and not secretary clinton answering those tough questions on national tv. >> why was it you that sunday morning? of all the people in government, why the u.s. ambassador to the united nations answering questions on the attack. >> it wasn't that usual.
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i've done shows in the past. secretary clinton had been asked by most of the networks to go on. she had an incredibly gruelling week dealing with the protests around the middle east and north africa that enveloped our embassies. she had to deal with the loss of our four colleagues in benghazi. and console the whole state department, greet the families and the bodies. and she declined to do it. and i was asked by the white house if i would do it as the next senior american diplomat. we were talking about a range of issues that week. it wasn't just benghazi as you'll recall. it was a broad spectrum of foreign policy and national security issues that i talk about publicly every day. so i was asked, i was willing to do so. it wasn't what i had planned for that weekend originally but i don't regret doing that, brian. i think when you're a diplomat and a public official and a tragedy happens and it is related to the work that you do, it's our obligation to try to
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explain it as best we can to the american people. that's what i did. >> last night, president obama says rice would remain a close member of his national security team. >> susan's going to continue to be an outstanding u.s. ambassador to the united nations. i hadn't made a decision about who would be my next secretary of state. there's no doubt that susan was qualified. there are other people who are qualified as well. her interest is in serving me but more importantly, serving the country. i could not be prouder with her. she will continue to be one of the top members of my national security team. >> as for two of rice's biggest critics, senator john mccain's office released a statement saying, he wishes her well but will continue to seek all the facts about what happened in benghazi. last night senator lindsey graham echoed that. >> we're not going to let this go. how could for seven hours nobody come to the aid of the people during the attack? why did we leave the consulate open? where was the president when the british decided to close their
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consulate in june? and afterwards, how did the intelligence get so screwed up for lack of a better word? so we're going to keep pressing this so we can learn from it, not have it happen again. >> with susan rice out of the running, the spotlight immediately turns to senator john kerry. a white house official tells nbc news it's almost certain kerry will be the next secretary of state. saying, quote, there were two people on the list, two minus one is one. leaving capitol hill last night, kerry, let's just say he was coy with reporters. >> earlier today and i'm just going to continue to do my work. >> kerry released a statement praising rice as a dedicated public serveant saying in part, quote, as someone who has weathered my share of political attacks and understands on a personal level just how difficult politics can be, i felt for her throughout these last difficult weeks. i also know she will continue to serve with great passion and
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distinction. kerry was mentioned at one point as a potential defense secretary also. but in this latest cabinet shake-up, that post appears to be going to a republican. according to reports, former nebraska senator chuck hagel is the administration's leading candidate for the top defense post. hagel reportedly discussed the position with president obama earlier this month at the white house. officials say he may be nominated as soon as next week. joining us now to break down this news, vice president and executive editor of the new and msnbc politico analyst richard wolf. let's start with who gets the blame for what happened yesterday? >> this was whipped up by john mccain. he made it personal. he was dogged with it. fox news, let's face it, were also driving the story considerably. in the end, this came down to susan rice's decision and my sources who are very close to her said, this wasn't someone who was pushed. she made the decision herself. she could have got confirmed but decided to pull back because it
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would have been messy. >> she honestly said in her op-ed, it was for the best interest of country. you believe she feels that. >> everybody says for the best interest of the country. there is a calculation you make about whether it's worth it to yourself, your family, to your boss, the president of the united states, they would have taken on water to get her through. i think they could have got her through. i think she thinks she could have got through but the political costs, given the campaign, the crusade, if you will, that was being led here was really hard. >> messy to say the least. it is as simple as john kerry's next? is there anyone that can sneak into this conversation? >> nothing is simple. john kerry has other problems of his own. for instance, if you're john mccain and you're hawkish about interventi intervention, you might not like the idea of a john kerry. on the other hand, they're friends. i'm not saying anything is smooth sailing but john kerry is certainly the front-runner. there aren't any other strong
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candidates. >> you'd be surprised if it wasn't him. >> i'd be astonished. >> we'll hold you to that. >> thank you. >> we'll need you to weigh in on another story. today on this show, let's call it the budgetary boondoggle. both sides met last night in what they'd call a frank conversation. boehner earlier in the today accused obama of dragging this out. >> i've been pushing all year for us to address this problem. here we are at the 11th hour and the president still isn't serious about dealing with this issue right here. it's this issue. spending. >> if we go over the cliff will you permit a vote to decouple that and fight again on the -- >> ifs and ands and buts are like candy and nuts. if that were the case every day would be christmas. my goal is to get to -- i know, it's going to be here real soon! my goal is to get to an
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agreement with the president of the united states that addresses this problem. wall street's optimism may be throwing some cracks. all three major indices closing lower yesterday. it's looking less and less likely that both sides will reach a deal before the christmas break. richard, as an outsider, when the markets get nervous, i start to pay attention and i get nervous. when's the collision in this political game of chicken? >> the markets are going to get nervous. this uncertainly is not good for anyone. we'll have it now and around this debt ceiling thing we had last year as well, which was a real problem for world markets. but look, it's strange. you have two people who are pretending to negotiate and they come out, at least the speaker comes out and says we have got nothing done. why meet up if there's no room for agreement? i think this is the dance phase of it. it's going to annoy people but of course on both sides they look like they're tough to their own base. there will be a deal. there will be a compromise. they are really dragging this out, though. >> i keep hearing on "morning
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joe," the longer it drags out, the better for the white house, the worse it is for republicans. you believe that. >> it's bad for everyone. they know where the deal will come out. why not just do it. john boehner has to say he was tough, he went for the best deal possible. he's doing it a couple of beats too many times, right? that's why everyone is saying is there really a deal here? yes. if there wasn't a deal he wouldn't be driving to the white house at all. >> let's hope so. good news maybe under the christmas tree. >> i'm a dogged optimist. >> you have to be. richard, thanks for being with us early on this morning. we'll see you in a few minutes with your excellent insights on "morning joe." overseas news now, new signs of trouble for the syrian government and its embattled president. russia is offering a bleak outlook on how things might end for president assad. they said they were preparing to
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evacuate thousands of russian citizens from the country. with rebel forces closing in on the capital, damascus, richard engel witnessed firsthand the tough fighting still being waged in the larger city of aleppo. >> reporter: the syrian regime appears to be cracking but the rebels remain outgun and unable to protect civilians, especially in aleppo. an ancient once-bustling city the size of chicago. we followed a rebel fighter. we're going to go to one of your sniper positions. he runs across intersections exposed to government fire and joins his unit. they peek around corners, fire at government soldiers. and shout insults at them. "i joined this revolt because of the tyranny and for religion, because for 40 years we have been oppressed" says this sniper, who painted furniture
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before the war. the fighting has left this once beautiful city devastated. historic mosques destroyed, bread lines, gas shortages, power outages. this was one of the only hospitals residents say available to the opposition. now that it's been destroyed, the rebels could only provide the most basic of first aid for their wounded. this clinic operates in secret. it, too, could be bombed. nurses change bannedages by flashlight. medical supplies are scarce. syrian-american doctor kati came from los angeles to help. i asked him what aleppo needs most. >> everything. to simple pain killers. there's none. they have tylenol here, which has to be brought in. >> reporter: rebels hope their sacrifices will be worth it, once aleppo falls, they say, damascus will follow. until then, syria's largest city is suffering.
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>> that was nbc's richard engel reporting. this morning it's being reported that secretary of defense leon panetta has signed the order to send patriot missiles to turkey. the order is part of a nato effort to help shield turkey from chemical weapons or missile attacks coming from syria. as always, let us know why you're awake. shoot us an e-mail at still ahead on "way too early" -- ♪ i made it out of clay ♪ when it's dry and ready ♪ then dreidel i shall >> that would be so much better if we didn't know that was jeremy lin and the houston rockets. the toughest competition, the classic hanukkah dreidel song. also, highlights from the
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football game last night. that was miss what are the eagles doing? and not happy with the way the politicians are handling the fiscal cliff? wait until you see how the ukraine parliament settles their disputes. all of that when "way too early" comes back. [ female announcer ] born from the naturally sweet monk fruit,
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what's today, the 14th? 11 days tilt christmas, counting down and going fast. now for a quick check on weather to get you out the door this morning. the rainiest spot in the country, not where you'd expect it. arizona and the deserts out there in phoenix and tucson and vegas are getting the wet
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weather. this storm will travel across the country. on the east coast, sunday, great lakes, midwest, saturday. let me show you what's going on, enjoy this nice pattern while it lasts. east coast unsettled from sunday right through wednesday. enjoy the sunshine while it lasts. it will be a beautiful afternoon today. temperatures aren't even that cold anywhere in the country. that's why i'm not talking about a lot of snow and rain in the days ahead. mostly rain. the forecast today, another beautiful day. jen told me yesterday 49 was too chilly for lunch in d.c. 53 probably is, too. maybe a nice walk off lunch. how about that? the northern plains, in the 30s. the weekend forecast, again, saturday's the best day in new england and the mid-atlantic because on sunday, that's when it will be cloudy and rainy and a little bit snowy in areas of northern new england. keep that in mean. i've been teasing that big possible east coast storm tuesday into wednesday. still a possibility. now on to sports where the only thing you need to know, in my fantasy football semifinals,
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i was going against the bengals defense. not happy. eagles, their dismal season continued last night. first quarter, trying to get the punt off, it's blocked. by his own teammates and recovered outside the 10 yard line. let's take another look. marvin mcnut. he gets pushed back into the pun. it's been that kind of year for the eagles. bengals down by three in the third quarter. andy dalton takes off. nice tackle by number 95. 11-yard touchdown run, enof the this, thsh, bryce brown takes the handoff, leveled. scooped up by wallace gillbury and takes it for the defensive touchdown. bengals scored 24 unanswered points in a hurry. they go on to win 34-13. now they have a record of 8-6. atlanta is currently holding down the last playoff spot. it looks like the steelers or bengals for that spot.
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lakers in town. carmelo anthony unstoppable. looking like the mvp this year. melo had 22 points in the first quarter alone. the most by any nba player in a quarter. the ankle gets caught behind him, scary moment. sprain not severely, not broken. he could possibly be out another game or two. to the fourth quarter, the knicks trying to hold off the lakers. without melo, felton to chandler there. they did hold them off. they finish with a victory. the lakers lose again, 116-107. the knicks perfect at home, 9-0. no word on the exact specific time that carmelo anthony will be back. the houston rockets decided to livan up your next hanukkah party with their rendition of the dreidel song. >> ♪ i have a little dreidel ♪ i made it out of clay ♪ when it's dry and ready
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dreidel i shall play ♪ ♪ dreidel dreidel dreidel ♪ i made it all of clay ♪ when it's dry and ready oh dreidel i shall play ♪ ♪ it has a lively body with legs so short and thin ♪ ♪ when it gets all tired it drops and then i win ♪ ♪ hey >> just waiting for one of them even with a half decent voice. brutal. coming up -- but punfy in coming up at the top of the hour on "morning joe," president obama's short list to replace hillary clinton as secretary of state just got a little bit shorter as u.s. ambassador susan rice withdraws her name for consideration for the top cabinet post. when we come back here, have you ever thought your politicians are living in a world of fantasy? in the near future, the white house will have to respond to a petition demanding the creation of the death star. we'll explain, next, as we huddle around the water cooler. luke, increase to full power, r2. this holiday, share everything.
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are you blameless in all this? >> brian, i don't think anybody is ever wholly blameless. but i didn't do anything wrong. i didn't mislead. i didn't misrepresent. i did the best with the information the united states government had at the time. >> we told you at the top of the
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show that susan rice had withdrawn her name from consideration from the secretary of state nomination. this comes months after intense scrutiny from the gop regarding rice's characterization of the attacks of the u.s. consulate in benghazi. if you want to sound smart today, tell your friends that at 48 years old, susan rice would have been the youngest woman ever to become secretary of state had she been confirmed. condoleezza rice was 50 when she was nominated by george w. bush back in 2004. enough for the real news. let's gather around that water cooler to watch politics ukrainian style. the newly elected ukrainian parliament had their first session yesterday. shortly into the day, this erupted. on the floor, a mass fist fight between the ruling party and opposition. the two sides were arguing over voting rules when opposition members stormed the podium, punching, grabbing, bite, choke holes and body slams. and full nelsons? also there, but not seen in the pictures, boxing heavyweight and
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gre great, klitschko. when asked why he wasn't getting involved, klitschko simply said, quote, i understand many people want klitschko to launch an offensive but i would like to remine them the fists a world champion are considered nuclear weapons. we will not use these weapons for now. it's not the first time the ukrainian politics have resorted to actions worthy of detention. back in 2010 lawmakers threw eggs and set off smoke bombs in the chamber over a vote to keep the russian navy stationed at a ukrainian port. a small victory for the nerds today. president obama must respond to a petition responded by t.j. on the white house's we the people website, asking him to start constructing a death star by 2016. i'm talking about the death star from "star wars." the one with the planet destroying laser beams who remembers the planet?
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what was the planet? no one? no one? you guys are geeks. i thought you'd know it for sure. the white house promised it would answer any petition submitted to its website that gets 25,000 signatures. this one now has 27,000. the petition says a death star weapons system could help strengthen our national defense. and help create jobs. you had ten sections on google and no one could help me out? calderon. thank you. the ear piercing screams fill the shopping malls this time of year, not too different from the screams at a pediatrician's office, right? last night jimmy kimmel asked viewers to judge these pictures of crying kids that were taken on santa's lap, during or comparing those to a flu shot at the doctor's office. >> santa's lap or flu shot? let's see the full photograph. flu shot. right. next up. [ laughter ]
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all right. we have mixed answers here. let's see. >> santa. >> santa's lap. all right. we have a -- everyone seems certain that's a flu shot. all right. let's have a look. yes, that is a flu shot. all right. there's the face. there's the expression. and we say flu shot? all right. let's take a look. it is santa. >> i got my kids going this weekend. i'll have to bring a photo in. probably be something similar to that. still ahead on "way too early," why are you awake? your tweets, texts and e-mails are next. "morning joe," just moments away. if you think running a restaurant is hard, try running four. fortunately we've got ink.
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