tv The Last Word MSNBC December 21, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm PST
because when the regime falls, there is going to be -- there will be -- a lot of killing between the two. there is some sort of civil and sectarian conflict that will break out. and i expect fighting in lebanon, just across the border is also going to break out. and you may have a situation where you have sunni/shiaa conflict in syria and lebanon and iraq, stretching from baghdad to beirut. and if you have these many sectarian groups fighting, in pockets, various places it will be very dangerous to cover. >> richard engel, you are so
at 9:30 eastern, americans stopped to remember the women and children lost a week ago to a mass murderer's bullets. not long after that, the man who made sure that the shooter was equipped with the tools of mass murder, made a speech in washington that did not include a single word of apology. there is no chance, no chance, that wayne lapierre will choose to say what is best for the country or our children. >> since when did the gun become a bad word? >> the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun. >> is a good guy with the gun. >> it is the good guys against the bad guys and everyone should have a gun. >> the nra embarrassed itself. >> very haunting and disturbing. >> basically we are all targets. >> and our society is populated
by an unknown number of genuine monsters. >> and we need to have a gun on us at all times. >> i call on congress today to put armed police officers in every school in the nation. >> what does that say about me? >> the media called me crazy. >> this guy is whacked. >> this was not a press conference. >> that was a commercial. >> more of a commercial. >> he didn't even take questions. >> the most bizarre press briefings i have ever witnessed. >> since when did the gun before a bad word? >> wayne lapierre blamed the media, video games. >> we are not the only culture that has video games. >> but since when did the gun become a bad word, bad word, bad word? >> at 11:02 eastern time today, the world stopped today to
listen to this man. well, okay, the world didn't stop, but washington certainly stopped to listen. and all the cable networks stopped what they were doing to cover every word of what he had to say. and here is how he began. >> the national rifle association, 4 million mothers, fathers, sons and daughters joined the nation. >> wait a minute. 4 million people? in a country of 300 million people, a guy who represents 4 million people gets every camera in washington? and he doesn't really represent them he just tricks them out of some dues money with nonstop lies. most of those 4 million people disagree with him about a lot of stuff. when is the last time this guy got every camera in washington and live coverage from all cable news networks for something he had to say?
he is the ceo of the aarp, which has 40 million members, ten times the size of the nra. and the aarp members have more to worry about in the budget negotiations in washington this week than the nra members have ever had to worry about. but if barry rand steps up to a microphone to say something about it, i guarantee you no network will go live with that. and if this guy, who was actually elected to represent 12 million members of the afl-cio today, no one will go live to him either. and so what did this man have to say today? this man who got all of this attention. this man who is the ceo of a $200 million business that plays with the dues money of 4 million people, most of whom disagree with this man on some of the issues he cares about most.
>> now, we must speak. for the safety of our nation's children. no one, nobody has addressed the most important pressing and immediate question we face. how do we protect our children right now? starting today. in a way that we know works. >> and then he suggested something that you cannot do right now starting today. put a police officer in every school in america. that would require hiring at least 132,133 new police officers. now just based on the median salary for police officers in america, that would cost $6.7 billion a year. there is not a town or city or state in america that has extra money lying around today to hire extra police officers. if $6.7 billion had to be raised
from new taxes, then, of course, grover norquist would use all of his powers to oppose those taxes. grover norquist, who is, of course, a member of the board of the national rifle association. so the ceo of the nra took to a microphone in washington today to suggest a solution to the massacres of children in our schools and the solution is something he and his friends would not be willing to pay for. and he and his friends would attack any politician who attempted to pay for it. he reached for a variety of ways to make his point. >> we care about our money. so we protect our banks with armed guards. >> i don't know about you, but i cannot remember the last time i was in a bank that had an armed guard. all banks had them when i was a kid. and the armed guards couldn't stop bank robberies then.
what stopped bank robberies in america was not armed guards. it was video cameras and automatic locking saves that cannot be opened no matter how much you scare a teller with a gun. i'm not just talking about small town banks that i go into. new york city banks do not have armed guards anymore. he went on to cite an 18--year-old movie and a 12-year-old movie that were not exactly blockbusters as the reasons why children are being shot and killed. killed in an elementary school last week. he talked about people in the movie business. and stockholders of entertainment companies as "complicit co-conspirators in the mass murder at sandy hook elementary school. here is the lobbyists, saying people whose pensions might be
invested in mutual funs, co-conspirators in these murders. and then there was this. >> the media calls semiautomatic firearms machine guns. they claim these civilian semiautomatic firearms are used by the military. they tell us that the 223 round is one of the most powerful rifle calibers, when all of these claims are factually untrue. they don't know what they're talking about. >> that was aimed directly at the nra membership, directly at the people whose dues allow him to take home a million a year. most of those people know more about guns than most reporters do. he believes that if you can show one reporter using language about firearms that is not
strictly, technically accurate that he can count in every news media, what they say about guns. he wants to show a flash of his pretend ballistics ideas, that the 223 is one of the most powerful rifle calibers. i am sure there are bigger bullets than the 223, but every 223 fired in sandy hook elementary school came out of the barrel of that assault rifle, at three times the speed of sound. 3200 feet per second. is this really something to quibble about in how powerful a bullet is when it is heading toward a 6-year-old at the speed of 3200 feet per second? what kind of desperate cornered rat would dare to mention that
the sandy hook shooter could have used a more powerful bullet? could have what? done more damage? could have what? made the bodies of 6-year-olds even more difficult to identify? so today, the nra announced that it has a solution. complete solution to gun violence in america. mass murders in america. their solution is, the national school shield program. a police officer with a gun in every school. now, he didn't announce a national movie theater shield program with a police officer in every movie in america. wayne lapierre has in fact never spoken one word about 6-year-old victoria sullivan, who was
murdered in that movie theater in aurora, colorado, along with 11 other people. and 58 wounded, 58. all of that, death and savagery was delivered from an ammunition delivery system so big it is not called a magazine. it is called a drum. it holds 100 rounds. wayne lapierre is the lobbyist who made it possible for the mass murderer in the aurora movie theater to be able to shoot and kill and wound so many people without reloading even once. the law, senator diane feinstein pushed through congress in 1994 made large capacity ammunition delivery systems illegal. wayne lapierre made them legal ten years ago. wayne lapierre made no public statement whatsoever after the movie theater mass murder.
after that mass murder, so successfully used the weapon systems that wayne lapierre made available to him. instead, wayne lapierre simply sent out a letter, a letter asking for money. asking for contributions to the nra over and above dues. and as with every solicitation of money, wayne lapierre lied to every poor fool who fell for it. he said in his letter "nothing less than the future of our country and our freedom will be at stake." wayne lapierre did not announce today a national shopping mall parking lot shield program. because wayne lapierre has no suggestion about how to prevent or even in some way inhibit, maybe just somehow reduce the possibility of what happened to
9-year-old christina taylor greene, who was murdered because she chose to stand in a parking lot in tucson, arizona, and listen to her congresswoman, gabrielle giffords. wayne lapierre is all for having a police officer protect 9-year-old girls in school, but anywhere else a 9-year-old goes in america, a movie theater, a shopping mall, she is on her own. and we know now, she is on her own against the best equipped mass murderers in the history of the human race. that is right, we're number one, usa, usa, we're number one. no country in the world has better equipped mass murderers than the united states of america. and that is thanks to the lifetime work of wayne lapierre. every day since 1977, wayne lapierre has been making sure
that mad men in america can fire any gun they want, and any bullet they want. at any children they want, at any teachers, at police officers, at the president. the solution wayne lapierre suggested today to stop school shootings has already been tried in many places across america, including columbine high school, where 13 years ago 12 students and one teacher were shot dead. columbine had an armed sheriff's deputy at the school every day and every day prior to that. but when the moment came, the deputy could do something to stop the mass murderers. there was a good guy with a gun in the parking lot in tucson when the madman there opened fire on gabrielle giffords and the men and women and children in the parking lot. but the good guy with the gun could do nothing to stop what was happening because he
realized he could not get off a clean shot. a shot that he couldn't be sure would not kill one of the innocent bystanders. he said that gun and ammunition perpetuates the notion that one more gun law and one more law imposed on peaceful, lawful people will protect us. so there is wayne lapierre saying that he is opposed to anymore laws. not one more law, not a law banning the 100 round ammunition drum that was used in the colorado movie theater. not a law banning the 30-round ammunition magazines used in sandy hook elementary school. not a law banning assault weapons. not a law tightening access to ammunition. not any kind of law that would
make it in any way even slightly more difficult for a mad man to obtain the very best tools in the world for up close mass murder. not one more law. it is now impossible to count how many people wayne lapierre owes an apology to. there are all of those who have been killed by weapons that became available after he made sure the assault weapons ban would not be renewed. there are the parents of the dead, the brothers and sisters of the dead. the children of the dead. and then there are millions. truly, millions and millions more. because in his most vile fundraising letter before the last presidential election, wayne lapierre actually said
this about what would happen if barack obama was reelected president of the united states. "the night of november 6th, 2012, you and i will lose more on the election battlefield than our nation has lost in any battle any time, anywhere." there is wayne lapierre claiming on election night that he, who of course avoided service in the war of his era, the vietnam war, that he lost more on election night this year than "on any battlefield in the history of our nation." wayne lapierre lost more on election night than 1.3 million
americans who have lost their lives in war. he lost more than the relatives and the descendents of those 1.3 million americans. he lost more than all the amputees, double amputees, brain-damaged amputees that our wars have produced. how could wayne lapierre ever, ever find the words to deliver an adequate apology for that filthy insult to the american war dead, and to those of us who have lost loved ones in war? those of us who have lost loved ones in the war that wayne lapierre personally avoided service in. of course, there are no words. no words. and the apology will never come,
and we can now see through that psychotically self-centered statement that wayne lapierre made, "i will lose more on the election battlefield than our nation has lost in any battle, any time, anywhere." we now see that the mind that could shape that sentence is almost, almost as twisted, almost as damaged as the minds of the mass murderers wayne lapierre keeps supplied so well in america.
♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] everyone deserves the gift of all day pain relief. this season, discover aleve. all day pain relief with just two pills. politicians pass laws for gun-free school zones. they issue press releases bragging about them. they post signs, advertising them. and in doing so they tell every insane killer in america that schools are the safest place to inflict maximum mayhem, with
minimum risk. >> today, during the nra's stunt in front of the cameras in washington, in newtown, connecticut, there were five more funerals and one memorial service for the victims of the massacre at sandy hook elementary school. 7-year-old student grace audrey mcdonnell, 6-year-old student olivia rose engel, therapist, rachel davino, 7-year-old student, grace gay, and 6-year-old student, christopher dylan jack hockley. they were all remembered today. joining me now is connecticut's democratic senator-elect murphy. congressman murphy, you couldn't listen to wayne lapierre's
speech today because you were busy in newtown? >> i was, when he made that statement i was at grace's funeral. and by the time i got to the second funeral of the day that i attended, little dylan hockley's funeral, people there had heard or read the statement, and the whispers through that hall of hundreds were frankly in horror. i can't speak for everybody in newtown. but i think there is a lot of shock and disgust right now in newtown, when they heard that the nra came to the table today and said that the solution for what happened to us in newtown was to have more guns on the streets. to have more guns in our schools. that we don't have enough assault weapons out there to adequately protect us. this was as revolting and as tone-deaf a statement as i have ever seen from any political entity in my short time in politics. and as you said, it ignores reality. you know, the shooting in colorado was one example. but there were plenty of guns in
fort hood, and that didn't stop the madman from spraying the bullets. there were plenty of guns in virginia tech and that didn't stop the horror there either. there were a lot of people that watched wayne lapierre, and frankly i'm glad that they saw it. my colleagues that seem to be led around by the nra on a daily basis saw it. because they saw a man in an organization that is just absolutely fundamentally disconnected from what we're going through in newtown, and frankly where the whole world is right now. ultimately, i think this statement and what could come from it could make the nra irrelevant from the debate, and that would be the best thing for the families in newtown. >> well, they seem to be so far irrelevant to your political success. you represent as a congressman, the district that newtown is in. and you have managed to get from the nra the badge of an f-grade
on their issues. i have the feeling that today in connecticut, that could even be a badge of honor. >> yeah, i'm not sure that i can get much lower than that. but listen, i think a lot of people thought that at the very least the nra would come to the table today and just ignore the gun issue and maybe offer something on mental health. but what they did, essentially, was to spit in the faces of those who have gone through this tragedy. and ultimately, i think the result of this will be that a lot of legislators who maybe previously listened to the nra to make sure they had the a-rating, are going to look the other way. i don't mind the fact that everybody watched this today. because this was out of step with where this whole country is, as anything that we've seen from the nra, and that is saying a lot. >> i want to bring in eugene robinson, political analyst.
gene, i want to read you a comment, he said in general i don't think that the issue of safety in schools is putting an armed guard, because to be effective you have to have an armed guard at every class room, because if you just had one at the front door, what if the guys go around to the side doors? there are many doors in schools, he goes on a little bit from there. but that is actually the lesson from columbine, gene. >> yes, it is, there were armed guards at columbine as you pointed out and it did not stop the massacre. the solution to gun violence in the schools cannot be more guns in the schools. i was shocked when i heard lapierre today. it was desperate, he was ill logical to the point of insane, frankly. and i came to the word evil, lawrence, that was the word that just kept popping up in my mind
about this organization or -- at least the way he runs it. and the way it does arm these mad men. and so i think made themselves irrelevant. certainly forfeiture for their right to speak in the gun debate, and i hope we hear from nra members who favor sensible gun control. i hope we hear from the gun manufacturers and gun sellers who hide behind wayne lapierre's skirts, and frankly from the republican public officials who wouldn't say a word about newtown until after wayne lapierre had spoken. because they didn't want to cross him. so i hope we hear from them, too, they have to participate in this debate. and i would like to know what all of them, not just chris christie, but what all of them have to say now. >> chris murphy, gene makes a good point, that all four polls, poll in favor of some reasonable
adjustments in gun legislation. and there is wayne lapierre saying not one more law. >> of course they -- disagree with where lapierre is. because most members of the nra when they go out and hunt never discharge more than two or three bulls at a time. the vast majority of nra members have never looked at a 30-round or 100-round clip that goes into one of these guns. listen, he is so fundamentally out of step with where the nra is, that those politicians in washington that have had their votes frankly for decades dictated by the nra need to free themselves from those chains. i don't think there is any political gain any longer to following wayne lapierre when the majority of gun owners absolutely believe that there is common sense gun legislation to take these military-style weapons off the table. to get these high capacity clips
off of the table and allow them to get back to the sport that they enjoy. listen, this guy walked into sandy hook elementary school and within ten minutes, had killed 27 people. only two people escaped with injuries. there is absolutely no reason why gun owners and non gun owners can't come to the table and figure out ways to stop this from happening. >> thank you both for joining me tonight. thank you. coming up, the house and senate have left for christmas with america now teetering on the fiscal curb. ezra klein will join us, and a former lawmaker in the bush white house will come on to tell the republicans how to stop the political racket run by the nra, coming up. [ loud party sounds ]
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groundwork for further work on both growth and deficit reduction. that is and achievable goal. that can get done in ten days. once this legislation is agreed to, i expect democrats and republicans to get back to washington and have it pass both chambers. and i will immediately sign that legislation into law before january 1st of next year. >> today, house republicans passed a motion to adjourn until december 27th, that leaves speaker john boehner just four days to convince house republicans to support a deal to avert the fiscal curb, all while trying to preserve his speakership. >> last week i asked you if you were concerned about using your speakership. if you're not concerned, shouldn't you be? >> no, i'm not. and while we may have not been able to get the votes last night to avert 99.81% of the tax
increases, i don't think -- they were not taking that out on me. they're dealing with the perception that somebody might could -- accuse them. >> you have great sources in washington, could you please tell us what president obama said to john boehner during their phone call? >> i wish i knew, i don't have that good of sources, but i mean look, we're at a place now where it is very, very conceivably that we'll get to january one with nothing done. for a while i assumed this was noise and theater, and each side needed to demonstrate to their respective bases that they were getting what they needed to get. at this point i'm a lot more skeptical about that, and the people i talked to, that is a reported problem, they're worried about it getting done, as well. >> sam, i thought it was all
noise, and bluster, as well. and it is done, as you say to try to claim the high ground, have the president look like he is really trying to avoid the cliff. boehner, i'm really tried to avoid the cliff. but the leadership at both ends realize that they will actually have to go over the cliff in order to begin to have the real conversation, which i think you know, they can really seriously start having on new year's eve. >> yeah, i mean, it seems very clear now there is one of two options available. one is that boehner decides he doesn't have to work with a majority of his majority, that he has to craft a bill with democrats. and the other is they go over the cliff, the pressure is so acute probably on republican lawmakers, that they come back with the pressure on boehner, the latest proposal, the one that has a 400,000 threshold for
taxpayers that included the cpi. obama has done everything he can to convince the republicans to take a deal that under normal circumstances would be a huge victory for them. they are changing entitlement programs, protecting tax cuts for 99% of the public, getting trillions through the deal -- in the summer of 2011. that is a very much conservative victory. but obama can't seem to get boehner to say yes, i claim victory on this one. and it is remarkable that that is the second time he offered cuts to social security benefits, and boehner is not willing to accept it. >> what are the white house's terms once you hit january one. and will all the same stuff be on the table? or will the president simply demand a fix in the tax rates as a starting point, pass the bill that fixes the tax rates first, then you can come up here and talk about the other stuff.
>> it is a great point. and you know one of the understated aspects of this whole negotiation process is how much unemployment insurance, the payroll tax cut, and infrastructure spending has kept the white house at the table. the administration wants those three things. now they have gone away from the payroll tax code a little bit. but they want the economic stimulus, they know there is an advantage to it. once they're done, once you pass the cliff how much are they going to fight for them? obviously there was a point in the president including in his pare down today, unemployment insurance. they feel like it is a big component deal. they don't want to risk having it lapse, they think there is a big economic component for it. so yeah, when they go over the cliff, that is a huge negotiating problem here. >> sam stein, thank you. >> just how much of a bump will you really feel if we do over the fiscal curb? ezra klein will join me.
and later, a former law in the george w. bush white house calls the nra exactly what it is. a protection racket, a protection racket for republicans. he will join me. [ male announcer ] when it comes to the financial obstacles military families face, we understand. at usaa, we know military life is different. we've been there. that's why every bit of financial advice we offer is geared specifically to current and former military members and their families. [ laughs ] dad! dad! [ applause ] ♪ [ male announcer ] life brings obstacles. usaa brings advice. call or visit us online. we're ready to help.
okay, we are getting really close to the fiscal curb, and when congress comes back, they will only have four days. so it is time for ezra klein to tell us what we'll feel when we do go over the fiscal cliff. coming up. so now i can be in the scene. advair is clinically proven to help significantly improve lung function. unlike most copd medications, advair contains both an anti-inflammatory and a long-acting bronchodilator working together to help improve your lung function all day. advair won't replace fast-acting inhalers
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the speaker should bring the middle class tax cut passed by the senate five months ago to the floor for a vote. all he has to do is let democrats vote with some republicans. it will pass. the clock is ticking until the nation goes over the fiscal cliff and taxes go up for every family in america. but there is still time for the speaker to hit the brakes and avoid that cliff. >> even though democrats and republicans are arguing about whether those rates should go up for the wealthiest individuals, all of us, every single one of us agrees that tax rates should not go up for the other 98% of americans, which includes 97% of small businesses. every member of congress believes that. every democrat. every republican. so there is absolutely no reason, none, not to protect
these americans from a tax hike. at the very least let's agree right now on what we already agree on. let's get that done. >> the house of representatives now stands in recess until thursday, december 27th. just four days before we step off that fiscal curb. this week, the office of management and budget issued guidance to government agencies outlining the potential impact of the $1.2 trillion in budget cuts, which will start to take effect on january first, if congress does not act. joining me now is ezra klein, columnist for "the washington post" and an msnbc analyst, ezra, i just want to talk first about the spending side. because we talked the tax side of it a lot. and so there are preparations
being made now in all of the departments of this -- what we have to do starting in the first week of january. what is going on within this flurry of activity? within the departments? >> they are preparing, and ezra, it is before a shutdown or these events they're trying to look at furloughing things, instead of laying people off, a lot of it of course is premised on the idea that this will be quickly resolved. well, of course isn't we don't know how it will be resolved it makes it harder. there are three days the fiscal cliff can affect the economy, one is through tax increases and another is through spending cuts. and people get those. and the third is through financial markets. and that is one if they go off and it does seem there is not a resolution around the corner, that is one that will happen most quickly and be the most devastating as the financial markets will mediate the new expectations that washington may
throw us into recession. and businesses that were looking for credit in order to expand won't be able to get it. and so hiring decisions that we're going to be made, we expect to be coming in 2013, those hires won't happen, layoffs will happen. so the expectations of economic act that is coming through markets and credits can do it for them. >> it is hard to see as we sit here today what happens next thursday to make this anymore urgent. because normally, ezra, as we know in these situations there is a certain amount of public pressure. there is a certain sensation that you get back from constituents. it is christmas, christmas eve, and constituents are not exactly going to be knocking on their congressman's door and saying please go fix this. it is happening at a moment when the electorate could not be more distracted by the whole christmas season. >> yes, so that is certainly going to make it tougher. the question i began to wonder
about is simply what happens when we go off? what comes quicker? does the political pressure come quicker from the ceos and the market holders, saying what are you doing? the defense contractors, medicare doctors if we go off the fiscal cliff, get a 25% cut. so how does all the political pressure from the constituents and powerful players come from the economic pain, does the political pressure come quick enough before we get into the real economic pain? or does it go the other way? we get into the economic pain, or the economic pressure doesn't come in the right way or causes economic grid? the thing that worries me, if we go a month without the resolution we begin to run into a debt ceiling. and if we're going into a fiscal cliff ceiling, the contraction of government policy, and then on top of that we have a debt ceiling crisis, we're going to
leash an economic hell that will be like lehman in 2008. >> my reaction, the sense of this, it is why i'm relaxed going off the curb because i never believed we would hit the month and month and a half. and now if i'm wrong, you and i are both staying up nights. but my sense is that all capitol hill needs is being off the cliff for a day or two. and those people that are preventing boehner from getting something done now will all sit in the right corner and allow boehner to put together the right vote package to get something done in the first week that we're off the curb. >> i think you're probably right. and i think the market thinks you're right. that is why you're not seeing huge panic. but the only thing that makes me worry, is boehner's recent
travails, if he gets weaker, but i don't expect that to be bad. it should not be horrible. >> ezra, i think you should sleep at least the first three days, off the cliff, and then we can start to get nervous. ezra klein, thank you very much. >> you're welcome. coming up, a republican will tell us exactly how the nra racket really works. if you are one of the millions of men who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%.
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professor, you wrote a piece "the nra protection racket," how does that work? >> well, what they do, they have an enormous amount of money that they will spend to protect politicians who will pursue their agenda. and they will spend that money to protect anyone in their party, most of these politicians are republicans, but they make it very clear if you depart, they will come after you in the primary, they will come after you. support them in the primary, they will come after you with all the guns on you and take you out. and that is very intimidating for republican office holders. and that is why we have no progress in the gun control. >> you tell house of representatives, what did she do, what was her betrayal of the
nra? >> at issue there was a law that would have -- that the nra wanted passed by the late legislature that would allow gun owners to take their gunning on the private property without the property owner's consent. and that law that would not give the property owner the right to forbid guns on their private property. and she rightly believed that was contrary not only to public safety but to property rights. and she said no. and they said if you don't support us on this, we're going to take you out and they did that. they supported somebody in the primary who opposed her. >> it is stunning to me that these freedom champions would oppose the property owner's freedom to dictate the conduct
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