tv Morning Joe MSNBC January 9, 2013 3:00am-6:00am PST
as always, at the top of the show, we asked why are you awake? producer john tower has an answer. >> this is heartwarming. mark here, i was sleeping and rolled over to cuddle with my wife, and she kicked me. i got the message. >> i've been there, too. thanks, john. "morning joe" starts right now. during the first quarter of the game, the cameras found alabama quarterback a.j. mccarron's girlfriend in the stands. and brent musburger, the play-by-play announcer, went nuts. >> when you're a quarterback at alabama, you see that lovely lady there? that's a.j. mccarron's girlfriend, okay? i tell you, you quarterbacks, you get all the good-looking women. >> it's not just the way she looks but the way she carries
herself. >> all right now. what's that? >> i didn't know. >> you didn't know what? >> you missed the clip, i guess. >> no, i didn't miss the clip. i was actually here yesterday talking about creep man. >> talking about it very intelligently. >> look at this. this is amazing. >> she's the man of the moment. >> are you serious? she's on the "new york post" now? >> because she got, like, 100,000 twitter followers out of it. >> she's everywhere. >> kobe bryant invited her to a game? here's the deal. i was watching the game in the stands, and i had no idea, like, what espn was doing to keep viewers. i turned to my son and i said, so how's espn selling this to keep people from changing the channel? >> now you know. >> now i know. and by halftime, people were saying that have you heard brent musburger is being really,
really creepy. like the wave in the '80s would spread around the stadium. musburger's being creepy was spreading around the stadium. >> well, you had to find something to talk about. >> if wow had been cut out, i think he might have made it okay. but, i mean, you were on that early yesterday. it was the number one takeaway, joe, from the game. >> here's the deal, and i'm dead serious. i'm dead serious. this is how women look at the university of alabama. no, i'm dead serious. i'm not really that shocked. >> you don't want to end up like brent musburger. >> no, it's the opposite of brent musburger, and i'm dead serious. if you go to ole miss, if you go to the university of alabama, if you go to auburn, even. i guess you yankees aren't used to -- >> we don't have that in the north. >> no, i'm dead serious. i mean, you look -- you know what? seriously, i looked at that picture and said, she's pretty. and you know what she looks like? she looks like a lot of other
really pretty sorority girls at university of alabama or ole miss or auburn or i don't know. do you guys have them up at swanee? >> absolutely. >> i mean sororities. >> yeah. >> do you have sororities? >> absolutely. >> it's just not all that. get over it, move on. >> he doesn't get out a lot. >> you've got a dynasty. >> this is a different kind of s.e.c. dynasty. >> yeah. but we're used to it. we're used to it. >> this is not going to go on for nine minutes. >> you know what is going to go on for nine minutes, though? seriously, seriously, aig. >> aig. >> you know, the bailout from the very beginning. i was against it. and i know it's made a lot of money, but i was against three pages. you know, as much money as they threw around. you know. jokers like aig now are talking
about sue iing the government f us bailing them out of their reckless stupidity? >> yeah. yeah. you know, a guy comes by with a lifeboat, you get in the li lifeboat, it gets you back to shore, they send you a pail, you pay it and then later you say it's too much. >> and the controversy it caused at the time has gone away. don't remind us. >> first of all, the government is just getting out of aig, so this is the moment for them to rise up. second of all, you have hank greenberg, former chairman, who's mightily angry at what happened to him. he lost his job, 92% of the stock was taken by the government, and he's a fighting guy. so he went in and said let's sue the you know whats and get back some of ours. the basic point they make, which i have zero sympathy for is that they got a worse deal than the other banks got. >> oh, give me a break. we bailed them out. >> the thing, though, that needs to be pointed out -- and you do -- is that hank greenberg is driving the bus. they just have to decide whether
they're going to attach themselves to this suit. they supposedly have the fiduciary responsibility of their shareholders to consider it. but in the end, i don't know what you think, but i think it's going to be hard to go against the government on this one. i think it's going to be a lot of rancor. >> they've got a fiduciary duty to their shareholders, and i can't think of anyone that's going to make people angrier and hurt the company more than something like this. this is horrific publicity that they're going to be paying for sometime. you have a bank like bank of america or jpmorgan chase decide that they're going to raise atm fees by .00001% of their fee, and everybody freaks out, and it's a serious crisis. for aig, man. it gives another black eye. >> if the government had not gone in, they would have been dust. everybody would have lost their jobs. the government put a massive amount of money into that company. i agree with brian. i don't think they're going to go back at it because the reaction in washington yesterday
and even in new york, to the whole idea of this, was so over the top that it's hard to imagine they're now going to come back and actually do something. >> if only there were a senator elected to washington -- >> who cared about the consumer. >> -- that steve rattner supported. >> i think i know where we're going. >> if only there were that person. you could just check them off. >> you know what? there is. >> steve didn't support him. >> absolutely. you are going to come around on elizabeth warren. you just are. who doesn't? elizabeth warren said this on the issue. aig's reckless bets nearly crashed our entire economy. taxpayers across this country saved aig from ruin. and it would be outrageous for this company to turn around and sue the federal government because they think the deal wasn't generous enough. steve. >> so i agree with elizabeth warren who's completely right. >> that's all i need to hear. you just made my morning. >> january 9th of the new session. >> check right there. >> it's amazing what a victory does.
>> come on. >> something about 1,000 fathers and orphans. >> something like that. something like that. so i'm curious, mika. i'm reading "the new york times," as i do every morning. >> oh, yes. >> and i'm hurt. i am hurt because you always told me, and this is why, of course, i was hopeful even though mitt romney lost, that the next four years would be better because you said barack obama cares about women so much. >> yeah. >> and i thought he did. but obama's remade inner circle has an all-male look so far. you look at -- you look at barack obama's inner circle, and you look at the chairmen, and i can say chairmen in the house of representatives, it's like they're all men. we are back in, like, 1950, mika. >> i'm sorry, the caption underneath is really funny. yeah. >> all i can see is valerie's
leg. >> love valerie. she's right there. strong. >> they're all men, seriously. these are the guys that ran, like, "time" magazine in 1950. all the house chairmen are men. >> mm-hmm. >> it's unbelievable. >> we need more women in there. >> thank god the nominees that the president has out there are making it more diverse. >> diverse. >> all white men. >> we'll have stephanie cutter come in on this. >> does it make you sad? >> i think his policies, though, and his -- >> oh. >> no. because you need to actually lift more women up over a series of generations in order to be able to get them to break this glass ceiling. you don't put someone in unprepared just for a token. >> in fairness, 43% of his appointments have been women in the first administration. >> where did you pull that out of? >> thank you, steve rattner. >> it's true. >> show me the chart on that. >> let's figure out george w.
bush's. i bet it rivals it, if not beats it. >> oh, no doubt about it. he wasn't afraid to have women in his cabinet. >> one of the first things this president did was work harder to make sure women are paid equally to men, which they are not, which is a joke. because we work so much harder and ultimately we have -- >> doesn't hire them. for his own cabinet. that makes me sad. now to the new jersey governor. chris christie in his state of the state address, chris christie who's not afraid to actually hire women on his cabinet in his re-election year enjoying a 73% approval rating emergency new jersey registered voters. conservatives that hate chris christie, let me repeat that, chris christie has a 73% approval rating among voters. and unlike you, those of you lurched far out on the right, he actually wins elections. and he's going to win again in the bluest of blue states. he's now calling on lawmakers in washington to quickly pass federal aid for hurricane sandy
relief. what did christie focus on the most in this address? >> in his address yesterday, he talked about the storm that reshaped the jersey shoreline and underscored the delayed response in federal funding when compared to other disasters. >> we as a state have waited 72 days, seven times longer than the victims of hurricane katrina waited. and one thing i hope everyone in america now clearly understands, new jersey, both republicans and democrats, will never stand silent when our citizens are being short-changed. we have stood with the citizens of florida and alabama, mississippi and louisiana, iowa and vermont, california and missouri, in their times of need. now i trust they will stand with us. >> he also said washington could learn a thing or two from new
jersey about the art of compromise. >> now, we've had our fights. and we have stuck to our principles. but we have established a governing model for america that shows that even with heartfelt beliefs, bipartisan compromise is possible. achievement is the result. and progress for our people is the payoff. maybe the folks in washington in both parties could learn something from our record here in new jersey. >> you know, jon meacham, dana millbank who occasionally writes a snarky column or two in "the washington post" actually offered a fairly broad support of embrace of chris christie as the republican party savior, for obvious reasons. he says this. certainly the storm and more important, christie's forceful response boosted the governor's standing. but the tea party's record lows and christie's record highs tell a larger story. americans are crying out for an end of ideological warfare.
that has developed into christie's signature in new jersey. he began his term promising tax cuts and fighting with the teachers union over tenure, pay and education reforms, but he now preaches reconciliation in his address tuesday afternoon. and jon, he did that, but he never once compromised a single value. he fought the unions. he won. he got the unions coming to him to reform schools. and he's fought budget battles, and he's won. he's won them on his terms, but he doesn't vilify the democrats. he works with them. and this is -- again, for some reason, for some reason in washington, d.c., and with certain members of the conservative entertainment complex that follow washington, d.c., actually working with the other side and winning is seen as a political sin. >> yeah. the one nuance i'd add to that is from the bleachers is it
reflects of ideological warfare is the problem. politics is about ideas. it should be. fights over education, fights over taxes are important. it's just the fact when you invest everything in your eye delogical position and decline to recognize that the nature of a republic is to give mutual concessions of opinion or we're not going to make it, then you're in serious trouble. i think what one of the things that links both the aig thing, the guns debate and i think the aid to hurricane victims is this remarkable capacity we have for political a.d.d. >> mm-hmm. >> that is, we absorb these stories so fast now. we've become totally obsessed with them like a sponge for a very brief period of time. and then without political leadership like what christie is providing, like i think what governor cuomo is providing,
without that kind of leadership to remind people about what's important and to keep the fight going, then nothing happens. and the one thing that's worse, i think, that keeps people disenchanted from politics is when nothing happens. >> mika, republicans got it so wrong after the election. they said, we lost for this reason. we lost for that. they lost for a variety of reasons. some of them having nothing to do with ideology. you look at chris christie's numbers. i mean, you break down the internals on these polls. it's remarkable how well he's doing with all different groups. >> well, and that's the key. the numbers that we just put up, maybe we can put them up again. it shows, you know, democrats, by the way, women. there's widespread support for him. >> non-white voters, 69%. almost 7 in 10 of non-white voters approve of chris christie. >> this is going to be a kind of decision or a situation that the republican party has to deal with because some of the reasons
why those people like him pertain to the same issues that the republican party is losing people on or appearing at this point to be out of the mainstream and so extreme that they step on their own foot. >> you know, i'm also fascinated about how he can stick to his ideological opinions but yet how at the same time seem flexible. and i think it speaks to the fact that you don't have to politicize every single issue. when it's time to lead, when you have to lead the people in a tragedy like sandy, you do it. you don't try to take an angle or anti-spending or pro-spending, you just do what has to be done. and i think that's what's made him compelling. i also think with this debate about the vote, you talk about things going away so quickly, more than what peter king did, i think what chris christie came out and said that day had a major influence on washington, too. i mean, he repeated a lot of it yesterday, but he's, like, i'm not going to stand still and let this go away. i think the gun legislature, it will be interesting to see who steps up vocally because that will have less importance for a
lot of people to stand up for when that comes to pass. >> you know, and the thing about chris christie and his approach is opposite of the republicans' approach in washington. you know, chris christie does really follow the old speak softly and carry a big stick. he's talking about reconciliati reconciliation. he hugs the president. he's nice to the president when he comes after the storm. he does a lot of things that, again, cost him nothing politically. he doesn't -- >> actually -- >> -- doesn't force him to compromise on policy, but you look at the republicans in washington, it has long been my frustration that they're just the opposite. they'll scream, they'll rant, they'll rave. talk radio hosts that are associated to them will scream, they'll rant, they'll rave. they'll take a harsh, shrill tactic, the opposite of what reagan did. and then when it's number-crunching time, they're
liberals. they're liberals. let me make this point. they'll scream and yell and insult the president. they'll scream and yell and insult everybody else. they'll turn off swing voters, and then they'll cave like they did on the tax issue. they'll cave like they did last year on shutting down the government and ended up costing up americans like 40 billion more with this deal they claimed was going to be fiscally conservative. they always talk so tough, they offend people, but they never follow up. if they followed up with conservative policies, pay down the debt over the past decade, i would be a bit more forgiving of their shrillness, but they're shrill, and there's nothing to back it up. there's no real good conservative policy to back it up. >> well, one of the things you say is one of these things that -- i actually think he does things that cost him everything at first, but he doesn't care. and in the long run, he ends up winning. >> but i think there's two things to be said here. one, a lot of people feel that
governing at the local level, be it may or be it governor, doesn't have to be ideological warfare all the time. deal with the issues, take them one at a time. kind of the way romney dealt with health care in massachusetts and try to get something done. i think the second thing about christie that they respect, he says what he thinks. >> no matter what. >> i think it could be politically sort of dangerous, but if you've got a reputation for saying what you really believe and not just staking out some ideological position, i think it works better with voters. >> i also think that state and local politics is particularly vulnerable to narrow interest group money. we don't notice that quite as much. but if the nra, if groups want to go into state house districts, state senate districts, things can move really fast. and state politics, to some extent, is easier to manipulate from outside ideological groups. and so that's why great
governors, great mayors are remarkable figures because they're governing in what is a tinderbox situation. what christie's been doing so great and what reagan did as governor of california. >> you know, the thing is, mika, what works for chris christie and what works for other governors across the country would work in washington, d.c. it really, really would if somebody were willing to stick it out. it's not easy. george w. bush thought he could come and make it like austin and it got rough and ugly. you know what? somehow bush for, you know, all the mistakes that he made, george bush figured out how to work with democrats. he really did. he figured out how to work ted kennedy on education reform. democrats and bush worked together pretty well. it was ugly and shrill at times, but they still got stuff done. washington, i can't believe
we're saying this, but since george w. bush has left town, has gotten so much worse and so much more partisan. >> and it's a behavioral issue. i mean, right after chris christie sort of embraced the president and was working on trying to save his state from a horrific station which it's still in due to hurricane sandy, a lot of republicans were working behind the scenes, especially those from the romney campaign, to get rid of him because they were angry at what he had done. >> oh, the romney people were going after him. >> they were going after him. you can't get rid of someone who's actually true to who he is. that sticks with the american people. >> what was so stupid for the romney people to take that approach, they didn't realize that bill clinton was a master of this. when he realized it was time to give the other side a tip of the hat, he'd give the other side a tip of the hat. and guess what? everybody would stop and go, wow, that's pretty big of him. >> right. >> but romney's people never, ever thought -- >> they're like babies.
>> -- that maybe we should show a bigger side of romney. they just were petulant when chris christie decided to show a bigger side. and they were leaking, doing all these nasty things trying to hurt him. then the guy stood at 73%. >> and their own polling was wrong. so they were living in -- >> they were living in a dream world. chris christie's going to be here on the show this morning. >> look at that. >> this is good timing with these numbers that have been coming in the fairleigh dickinson poll. also stephanie cutter will be here. "ha "hardball's" chris matthews and actress laura dern. up next, mike allen with the top stories in the "politico playbook." first, bill karins with a check on the forecast. bill? >> good morning, mika. this january thaw, also impressive. our government affirmed that last year was the hottest year ever recorded by far in the lower 48 of the united states. that goes back over about 100 years. so very impressive stuff. it's a little chilly this morning. northern new england is really
the only spot in the eastern half of the country that's cold. the rest of the areas not bad at all. still in the 30s at this hour. and we're going to see a nice mild afternoon. no travel issues at all for your wednesday. new england all the way through the mid-atlantic. even back to the great lakes and ohio valley. but if you're flying today, dallas, san antonio to houston, any of those major airports have the possibility of heavy rain and some delays. thankfully, we didn't have any tornadoes last night. we were a little concerned about that. so we keep our streak going. this is the longest streak we've ever had in this nation with no tornado deaths. so that storm system continues to spread clouds and rain. now up to memphis heading over nashville. also kentucky, mississippi, alabama and eventually atlanta will get some rain today. so here is your wednesday forecast. also stormy in the northwest. seattle and portland getting rain. beautiful weather from denver to kansas city. chicago looks nice. tomorrow is when the rain will move into those areas. really no big snowstorms are on the way. it looks like the middle of the country, you get cold this
all right. at 26 past the hour, let's take a look at the "morning papers." from our parade of papers, "the austin american statesman" with the u.s. preparing for withdrawal from afghanistan by the end of 2014, the white house is considering a plan that would leave no american troops behind. not even in supporting roles. it's the first suggestion that president obama could opt for a full withdrawal as he did in iraq back in 2011. afghan president hamid karzai is scheduled to meet with president obama on friday at the white house. and "the seattle times," boeing is investigating problems with its 787 dreamliner after
back-to-back days of mishaps. jed one of the jets spilled about 40 gallons of fuel at logan airport. the day before an exploded battery sparked an electrical fire on board a different dre dreamliner plane also at logan airport. the tsa has implemented a new program that selects passengers based on their behavior and allows them to use a special lane to get through screenings more rapidly. the system builds on the precheck program which allows passengers deemed low risk to go through security without taking off shoes, belts and jackets or removing liquids or laptops from their carry-on. in "the new york times," the next call to the bull pen may most likely be from a cell phone. as part of a new sponsorship deal with t-mobile. stadiums will begin to disconnect the land lines that have been around for decades and exchange them with smartphones. >> no. >> i think that's just a stupid
idea. >> remember the one at fenway? so cool. >> networks around stadiums for fans in attendance. i don't like that. >> i don't like change. >> a revenue for stadiums will be selling those. >> and all the pictures. >> as alex points out, it's a problem for at&t with dropped calls, you've got to keep the bad pitcher on the mound. >> i do a lot of sports business stuff at cnbc. i talked to mlb last night about this. they said they're trying to get a secure line -- basically those lines are single line straight out to the bull pen that are so private. they're almost like the white house bat phone or what have you. they're trying to make sure that they can't be hacked. >> really? >> but what's the point of it all? >> it's a revenue generator. >> money. >> they sell the sponsorship for the phone. >> i don't believe that about sports. >> they wouldn't do that. it's all for fun, right? all right. speaking of fun -- >> oh, he's so fun. >> he's, like, mr. fun.
with us now, chief white house correspondent for "politico," mike allen who is here with the "morning playbook." mike, republicans have signaled that it could be a tough confirmation process for chuck hagel. we were talking a lot about this yesterday. also some other nominees as well. but you say the white house is looking forward to these fights. why would that be? >> no, that's exactly right. this is a real window into why the president made this tough choice of chuck hagel. and that is we talked to people around the white house who said that the president wants fights with congress. and there's both a short-term strategy here and a long-term strategy. in the short term, the president wants to take advantage of the fact that he's the only person in these negotiations who's not running for re-election. so he can afford to be tough. he can afford to stand up for what he said. second, simple contempt by the president. these republicans who lost to
him so badly in 2012, in his view, just won't take yes for an answer. so there's a little bit of exasperation by the president. but pull back the camera, and you see the bigger strategy, which is looking ahead to the midterm elections in 2014. by picking tough fights with the hill, the president uses his office to draw contrast with the republicans might make it easier for house democrats to get a majority back in 2014. it would be a long shot, but that would be bookends for the majority the president started his presidency with. >> let me ask you about another piece you're working on, mitch mcconnell facing ads from the right. there's a conservative advocacy group targeting him? >> we've talked before about mcconnell running for re-election this year. to what degree that might tie his hands or constrain him on some of these big deals. and we're seeing here one example of that. brent bozell, leading conservative name, is behind a group that's spending five
figures on digital ads in kentucky that show a picture of a morose mitch mcconnell. you don't often get a picture of a happy, giddy mitch mcconnell, but a morose mcconnell in between obama and biden. this is trying to stir up in states at the same time democrats are looking to challenge him just as republicans challenged harry reid in nevada. so this is the first of a series of efforts by conservatives to really pressure mitch mcconnell at the same time that he's trying to be the one adult in washington. >> uh-huh. >> you know, i want to talk about 2014 for a second. you know, the republicans have, i think, gotten off to a terrible start. and i think the president's strategy is pretty darn good. please, fight against a vietnam hero, a republican that you said
four years ago was the expert of all experts on foreign policy. please do that. yeah, please do that after you fought against susan rice. and please -- >> you ask why there aren't women in the inner circle. >> and by the way, there's going to be a gun debate coming up. and if republicans take an extremist stance and instead of fighting for handguns and fighting for the right to keep and bear, you know, hunting weapons and the right to keep and bear arms, instead fight for these massive clips, these high-capacity magazine clips and assault weapons, 2014, you've put all of this stuff together, jon meacham, 2014 is going to be a rough year for the republican party. i said '12 was moving them toward wig status. if they continue to be the party of extreme ideas and extreme factions instead of the party of balanced budgets, the party of
less taxes, the party of less regulation, the party of more economic freedom, then they're going to get -- seriously, they are going to move one step closer to political oblivion. >> yeah. i still think it's really important to look at the analogy of the democratic party which spent so much time in the wilderness and the -- >> '84, the san francisco democrats when they were radical. >> the 49-state sweep, and you got the deal, you got al frum and a lot of folks trying to reorient the party. and there was significant rethinking. and the democratic base didn't love that. steve knows this. but guess what? in 1992, you got the first president -- first democratic president in 12 years who then became the first democratic president since fdr to be re-elected. and now you've had the second democratic president to be re-elected since fdr who's the first guy who had a chance.
and so but right now we're at a point where republicans can't rethink themselves if they don't accept that they need to do something. >> quick numbers here. so in the middle of this when democrats went too far left starting in 1968 and lost people like my parents who had been democrats going all the way back to fdr. >> let's just say '66. reagan wins midterm. >> so we start '66. the next 5 out of 6 presidential elections, republicans win the popular vote. so democrats get their act together. they offend the base. they move to the center. like you said, it's instituted, and then what happens? democrats win 5 of the next 6 presidential elections in the popular vote. this is not that hard. republicans have gone too far right. they are owned now by extremists. they are owned now by
survivalists instead of hunters. they are owned now by people that are far more radical on issues than ronald reagan ever dreamed of being, and that's why they just keep losing. >> this is precisely the point. and everything you guys described having happened, i was there, as meacham said, i was part of it, but i think the difference was that while we certainly had our share of ideologues on the democratic party, we had the democratic wing of the democratic party that resisted to some degree this move back to the center, what you see now in terms of ideologues and rigidity and just complete zero tolerance passion on certain issues, whether it's guns, taxes, whatever, does not make me optimistic that the republicans that they're going to follow this historic precedent and make this transition. it's certainly not by 2014. >> certainly there's a challenge on the national level. you look at the state level, you've got some really good republican governors that are problem solvers, that don't have extremists on the far right, who
are trying to make money with their special interest groups or their talk radio shows or selling their books. you know, of course, there's some great conservative authors, some great conservative talk show hosts, but there are also some real extremists that try to drive the party's far right -- >> and things have to get really bad for real thing. >> this is about winning. i've been saying it for years. it's about winning. you know, people have said in the past i'm a rhino, a republican in name only. you know what? i'm starting to look that way because you know what i do when i run? i win. you know why? because i like winning. i want every vote. i want every dollar, and i get really angry when i lose a vote, and i get really angry when i lose a dollar. that's why i've never lost an election. if i ever get back into politics, i'll never lose an election again. there i said it. it's about winning! like nick saban, when nick saban coaches a football team, he doesn't implement strategies to make him feel good about himself. he doesn't implement
strategies -- i mean, he does everything to win. because that's how you move it down the field. and this republican party, it's not about winning on the national level. >> not right now. >> and that's why, guess what? they lose and keep losing. mike allen, thank you very much. >> have a great day. >> we'll see you tomorrow. >> thank you. brian, what do you have in sports? >> alabama maybe a little more. we'll hear what quarterback a.j. mccarron thinks about his girlfriend's newfound fame. >> oh, my. >> we'll also update rg3 and his injury and the sideline spat with dr. james andrews.
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she's got 100,000 twitter followers now. >> no way. >> 100,000. >> she went from 300 two weeks ago to 100,000, and lebron james is following her now on twitter, king james. >> say you swear. >> i swear to you it's true. >> lebron james is following her on twitter right now. >> man! well, i'm going to tweet him. i'm gonna get a follow. that's messed up. >> that is messed up. >> he's cute, actually. >> that is messed up. >> jealousy from alabama quarterback a.j. mccarron commenting, of course, on his girlfriend, katherine webb, her newfound fame. she has over 200,000 twitter followers now. the former miss alabama, she saw
a jump, i mean, i have twitter envy, by the way. >> what does she tweet? >> i don't know what she has ever tweeted, but people want to follow her on twitter. >> mika @katherinewebb, see what she tweets. >> i'm sure you guys haven't looked and have no idea how to find her. >> no idea. >> i'm good. >> she didn't mind brent musburger's comments at all. she called it kind of nice. she said she didn't look at it as creepy as all. >> that's nice of her. a sweet girl. >> that's a southern woman. bless his heart. >> but it was creepy. >> bless his heart. he's a dead man. >> so let's keep this in the south. dr. james andrews. pensacola. pensacola guy now. >> the bottom line now is that basically rg3, we all know he's going to have surgery today. it looks like an lcl tear, maybe an acl tear as well. he's going to have surgery. dr. james andrews came out and
basically said shanahan gave -- he said what's the deal? he gave him a wave, said he's running around, so put him back in. and he never actually checked his knee. but he also -- dr. james andrews came out and said, quote, coach shanahan looks at me like, is he okay? and i give him the hi sign as in he's running around, so i guess he's okay. but i didn't get to check him out until after the game. it was just a communication problem. heat of battle. i didn't get to tell him i didn't get to examine the knee. mike shanahan would never have put him out there at risk just to win the game. >> so we're having a little backtracking here. >> a little bit. rg3, why wouldn't you poke around a little bit? one of the best athletes on the planet. >> he's the franchise. can i ask you guys, this is open and shut for me, but it's obviously not for voters. you've got voting for baseball hall of fame. >> yes. >> and we're in the steroids era now. and these guys that were 'roided up and cheated are now up for --
barry bonds, roger clemons, sk sosa. there's no way i could ever vote for barry bonds or roger clemens. they're cheaters. one's a felon. they're liars. roger clemens' testimony in front of congress where he just lied through his teeth, i believe, my opinion, and so do a lot of other people, that disqualifies him right there. >> i don't think many people disagree with you, joe. the question is where do you draw the line? do you want to bring marist back? ruth's records back? do you just wipe out 25 -- 20 years of records? >> well, it depends. do you want it to mean something? >> i do. i agree. i just don't know how to play every play. there's so many players that did steroids and hgh who never got caught. >> the thing is, people are talking about mickey mantle being a drunk and babe ruth, you know, having crazy, off-the-field antics.
that actually hurt their performance. this was soc calculated where they brought in doctors. this was so calculated to cheat. >> i don't see how you let these guys in. it's like everything in life. you have to draw a line somewhere. you kind of see it and you know where that line is. but i don't see how you let those guys in. i just don't see it. >> babe ruth was drinking, running around. >> it made his gut expand. barry bonds' head expanded. therein lies a big difference here. you know, the tragedy here for all of them is that clemens and bonds were two of the best. >> they were good enough. >> and by the way, barry bonds, back before he exploded and got elephantitis, the guy was a 30/30. he was, like, one of the ten best players probably of all time before he started cheating. >> that's right. >> i don't think you let them in. >> i wouldn't want to explain to
my 10-year-old why the guys who cheated and took steps to distort their bodies would be honored. >> "must-read opinion pages" are next. at 1:45, the aflac duck was brought in with multiple lacerations to the wing and a fractured beak. surgery was successful, but he will be in a cast until it is fully healed,
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welcome back to "morning joe." a live look at the white house. the lights are on. the sun is yet to come up over washington. it's 49 past the hour. we've got time for one "must-read opinion page." this is "the new york times" editorial board writing, "another slap on the wrist. not surprisingly, after spending an estimated $1.5 billion on consultants, the banks have found little wrongdoing and provided no meaningful relief. equally unsurprisingly,
regulators will let the banks off with a wrist slap for their failure to execute credible and effective reviews. regulators have said that the goal in ending the reviews is to provide relief to borrowers in a more timely manner. if it's timely relief they wanted, they would not have instituted the deeply flawed review process in the first place. nor would they have let the sham reviews drag on for more than a year. worse, the settlement amount is inadequate. since there are no reliable analysises to identify wronged borrowers, there is also no clear way to apportion the $3.3 billion among 3.8 million borrowers covered by the settlement." >> the bank audits. >> it's interesting, i was thinking about this last night, it's hard to think of very many hometown newspapers that are as antagonistic toward their hometown industry as "the times" is toward the banks. the houston papers i don't think are bashing exxon every day, but put that aside. "the times" has a very strong point of view on this. and i'm not here to defend the
banks, but the fact is the banks paying -- >> by the way, thank you for inviting rattner here to defend the banks. >> i had him fly back from overseas. >> but since you've got a strong point of view, let me give you a slight balance. the banks are paying $10 billion to resolve this thing. it was not the banks that could not finish these reviews, it was the regulators who said these reviews are too complicated, taking too long and they really are impossible to do. so instead let's just have you pay a lot of money and then we'll figure out what to do with it. so i think it's a reasonable result to a very ugly situation. a lot of bad behavior. >> once again, we've got an industry that's become so complex that regulators who are supposed to keep it in check can't even follow the rules. the new rules of the game. >> well, can't, and remember in the '07 period didn't want to. everything was rip-roaring great. >> but they want to now and they still can't. >> it's too complex. >> so it's still too complex. the banks have gotten bigger, the rules are still too complex
for regulators to follow, so we're just as much at risk of another bank failure and another taxpayer-funded bailout as we were in 2008. >> well, we're a little bit less because we have required these banks to hold a lot more capital. there have been changes through dodd-frank that have made the banks safer and sounder. by the way, there are very sophisticated investors who won't invest in banks because they say we can't understand them. your basic point that a bunch of regulators in washington can't really know exactly what's going on inside an institution like citibank is correct. >> i'm glad we're talking to steve rattner for all these complex questions. >> he flies around in a gold-plated plane. >> he understands money. but i would suggest, steve and joe, that maybe in order to get a good answer to these questions, you ought to ask yourself what would elizabeth warren say? >> what would elizabeth warren do? i ask myself, what would she do?
>> bring yourself to the light. she's perfect. she's perfect. >> can you believe that even the most sophisticated investor stays away from banks because they don't get it. >> they don't get it. but i will say not only are the banks holding more money, they're not as involved in as risky investments and so on. the truth is, a lot of smart investors aren't even in stocks. because they don't necessarily want that market. they want real estate. so it doesn't surprise me that smart money's staying away from that. >> real estate. good old bullion and dog racing. those are my big three. still ahead, we're going to talk to governor chris christie about his state of the state address. also "hardball's" chris matthews joins the conversation. we're back in just a moment. [ female announcer ] going to sleep may be easy, but when you wake up in the middle of the night it can be frustrating.
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♪ welcome back to "morning joe." look at that beautiful shot of new york city. it is the top of the hour. jon meacham is still with us. and joining the set, former deputy campaign manager for president obama, stephanie cutter. >> this is huge! this is huge! >> good to see you. we're lucky having her back. and director of the earth institute at columbia university, economist dr. jeffrey sachs. >> i've got to say, reading "the new york times," i'm surprised they even gave stephanie a position in the obama campaign. obama's inner circle has an all-male look so far, which is why stephanie's here. >> do we really want to go there? >> we always say politicians should admit when they say
something that's not accurate. i wondered what bush's record was. it's 33% as opposed to 43%. so i should have noted that. >> there you go. you should have. >> yes, you should have. >> i apologize to america. >> we'll see what happens. >> seriously -- >> i'm a little concerned. >> -- the inner circle has an all-male look. well, it's too bad that your republican friends knocked susan rice out of the running, viciously. >> yeah, joe. >> well, david axelrod was on last week and said that barack obama never even wanted susan rice to be secretary of state. >> he said he hadn't made a decision. >> it would have been fantastic. >> it's not reflective of what actually happened. >> really? >> of his inner circle? >> are you sure? all men and valerie's leg. >> are you suggesting that an editorial institution made a bad choice? >> but that's the inner circle right there. again, they all look like -- they went to princeton. >> when you want to hurt yourself, masochistic?
do you want to hear another rant about what this president has done for women? really? >> he's not hired them. >> oh, come on. >> to run his cabinet. it just makes me sad. i thought we had gotten further than this, jeffrey sachs. >> this idiotic onset that you're putting on the table in a half-joking fashion is really not a good way to start the hour. >> actually, i've got to say, george w. bush had women in his inner circle. >> but there are plenty of women in the president's inner circle. valerie jarrett who comes on the show very often. >> in fact, there's the picture of her leg in this. >> by the way -- >> i hear there's a picture of her leg. >> i was looking at this. >> the two deputy chiefs of staff at the white house, plenty of women in the cabinet. >> if you circle it, jon meacham, i'm sending you away. >> i'm just saying, i'm following the kancaption. >> who was the guy at the alabama game? musburg musburger. >> brent musburger. we've got so much to talk about this morning.
let's start, first of all, with aig. we bail out -- we have this corporate bailout for the worst actors on wall street. they get the money. and aig was one of the worst of the worst. >> they were. they were the absolute epicenter of the whole crisis. >> of the whole thing. and then they're going to turn around, after making these exotic financial instruments that ended up, you know, still, still is making middle-class americans and working-class americans suffer today, five years later, they're going to turn around and sue the federal government for bailing them -- for us taxpayers bailing them out? >> they are. and why is it that every single day there are new fines, new penalties. this is an industry that went criminal. it's unbelievable. >> when you say it went criminal -- >> wall street, every single day -- >> i don't see anybody in jail. why hasn't anybody been sent to
jail? millions of americans suffered because of what they did. >> and still did. >> everybody walked. >> why? >> why? because it's an inside job, as the movie said. it was an inside job. and it remains an inside job. and the people who were responsible for this remain in key positions on wall street. and what's amazing to me is that every single day, there's a new penalty, a new fine, a new admission. this one on the mortgages is not something out of the blue. every day there's insider trading penalties, fraud, settlements on civil suits. this has been going on for years now. it's completely outrageous. and aig -- >> not one person has been sent to jail. >> but aig was the most obnoxious because they blew up this whole situation with the credit default swaps. as soon as they did, the obama white house in the early days said, we've got to pay them the
bonuses. and not just to aig in general, but to the unit in aig which was at the absolute center of selling those cdss. >> it's unbelievable. and now you look at "the new york times'" lead editorial today, and you see from what steve rattner said in defense of the banks -- >> there is no defense. >> we'll get steve back on here. i think part of that was devil's advocate, just to be on the other side of it, and also because in so defending the banks, that still puts him on the other side of elizabeth warren, which is the only place he wants to be. >> he's going to learn that she's always right. >> but four years after a wall street meltdown, driven by the worst behavior on wall street, and the banks that were too big to fail are even bigger. and the regulators have no more hope today than they did four or five years ago of actually tracing the criminal behavior because it's so complicated, as
steve says, that even the smartest investors have no idea what's going on inside those institutions. >> and we know that there's a huge amount of liquidity sloshing around again, and some bubble is building up someplace because that's what the central banks are trying to do to keep the economies more or less stable. and they're not going to be stable at some point because the regulations don't exist, because the power structure still means that the regulators that turned their eye away, because the structure of the industry absolutely hasn't been solved, and because no one was held accountable. >> i'm a small-government conservative, meacham. i hate washington spending money unless it absolutely has to. i will tell you what. we're going to have to pay regulators a lot of money. >> oh, yeah. >> because you know what we're doing is? we're paying kids a starting salary so they can work there for two or three years, learn the tricks of the trade, and then go to wall street and get paid millions. we're going to -- listen, we're going to have to pay regulators
seven figures if they're going to keep up with the complexities, or we're going to have to figure some way out to reward regulators in washington, d.c., to keep these people in check on wall street because at the end of the day, it costs us hundreds of millions of dollars, or trillions of dollars when we have another crash. >> you have to stop the resolving door. the only way to do that is to make the incentive structure such that people don't want to go through the revolving door. it's a little bit like paying teachers, in a sense. i wanted to ask stephanie, when you were looking at the polling during the campaign, how much of the economic populous message that jeff was just talking about was resonating? because at least here in sort of the bubble, whenever the president would attack the banks, everybody's heads would explode. >> he'd say hey, why did you only give me $30,000 instead of $34,000 for this chicken? >> exactly.
>> he we wanted after them hard. let's be fair. >> but let's be clear. whenever he said anything remotely critical, it was though as he had criticized -- a 14-year-old had criticized his girlfriend. there was lots of crying and whining. so what was the polling showing? >> a good analogy. i think that it's not a surprise. the american people, they have a good understanding of what happened four years ago and what we've been going through ever since. and they want some accountability, and they want to know it's never going to happen again. if somebody's wrongdoing whether it's on wall street or aig or anywhere else, they don't have to pay for it. so when the president talked about ensuring that there's accountability if you work hard, you can get ahead, play by the rules, take responsibility, that applies to wall street, applies to businesses all over the country. you know, i was listening to steve rattner earlier. he and i were colleagues in the early days of the administration at treasury. you know, i remember the aig bonuses. i think that we've come a long way since in getting the money
back, actually making taxpayers a profit on that investment in aig to save the economic system. you know, those bonuses were an inflection point in our country to show the irresponsibility that had taken place. those were contractual -- >> i remember calling the white house, "what are you doing?" and being told, oh, there's nothing we can do about it, as they're giving this massive bailout. no, there's nothing we can do about those bonuses. >> remember what we inherited. >> absolutely unbelievable. >> we inherited those agreements from the previous administration. we were able to cut those bonuses in half. look, that was bitter medicine at the time. the president wasn't happy about it. and that's why he put reforms in place to ensure that something like that will never happen again. >> but that's a problem is they're going to happen again because if tomorrow citi goes under, we're going to bail them out. we've got no choice because their tentacles are spread across the world financial system. the banks are bigger today than they've ever been, and the rules
are more opaque than they've ever been. >> there are some things on the books -- and i'm not saying the job is done, but there are reforms that have taken place to ensure that there is a lens into what capital margins citi is holding and other banks are holding to ensure that they have a living will of sorts to ensure that if something does happen to them, they can ensure that taxpayers don't have to bail them out, that they've got the resources to take care of themselves. look, i'm not a wall street expert. i do remember going through these reforms in the administration. i think we've taken some steps forward. i don't think we're done. >> right. >> but we've got to implement what we have. i think we do have to fund the regulators. that's a battle every year with congress. >> you could argue this president has taken steps, at the very least. >> of course you could argue that, mika, and you do. >> and you should. >> with a lot of people who happen to be republicans trying to block him every step of the way, especially even with the people that he's put in place to sort of build a better environment for consumers, dr. sachs, where is the consumer
today on being treated fairly by the banks, being given clear information, being not put in situations where they're going to go under water like still so many americans are with their mortgages? >> well, i think we're all confused. >> have any of them improved? >> i think there's probably a little improvement. i think elizabeth war knoren is going to make a big difference because she's going to be watching absolutely. i think the truth is the bankers still run the show in washington as well as on wall street. the thing about bailing out banks, even if you had to bail out the financial system, you don't have to bail out the bankers. and that's where they didn't know how to draw the line. and i think what you said, joe, is absolutely right. the campaign contributions have been the focus on both parties. this time they went wildly for the republican side because it's true. you do the slightest thing, it's indignation. you only gave us hundreds of billions of dollars of bailout.
how dare you say a word. so it's true. wall street really is so extreme in its views. but it gets its way. so it's been a good tactic for them. >> i would be certain -- and stephanie, if i'm wrong, let me know -- that if youle positi po breaking up the banks, breaking up the big banks to make sure that too big to fail would never happen again, that would poll wildly. it would be very popular. >> those were the decisions in 2009 that could have been taken. >> right. and yet nobody talked about that on the campaign trail last year other than jon huntsman. he was the only one that said we have to break up the big banks. >> those choices had to be made a few years ago. now when you've got some quiet again, no way that's going to happen. >> yeah. >> when the decisive moment came, the banks wrote their ticket. >> so true or false. if citi goes under tomorrow, do we all bail them out? we all bail them out again. >> absolutely. >> and i could say that about the other four or five -- i could say the same about wells fargo.
if wells fargo went under tomorrow, we'd have to bail them out. >> absolutely. those are earthquakes for the world economy. we don't have that -- >> so basically they are connected to life support to the american people, the middle-class americans who are going to have to bail them out again. and the question is how do we start unwinding that, even if it's slowly? how do we start unwinding that today? so we will never be faced with what we were faced with on september 15th, 2008, again? >> those who were responsible for making the decisions that got us into the mess should have left, their position should have been forced out. there were, in my view, criminal offenses. but simply the irresponsibility was enough that they could not pass the bank regulation. >> what do you mean? >> but those people are still there. not only are they still there, they're still absolutely all the way through the administration, the congress. this is the american political system, as you know very well. >> stephanie, let me ask you about guns. it's an issue obviously since newtown that we've been talking
about an awful lot. yesterday mika interviewed stanley mcchrystal. he agreed like a lot of my republican military friends agree, that they don't want people carrying around the same weapons in america that they carried around in afghanistan when they were hunting the taliban. >> right. >> will you just give us an insight on the problems that we face getting rid of, you know, these magazine clips where you can, you know, shoot off, you know, dozens of bullets in seconds? and some of these assault weapons that, again, are made for one reason and one reason only, to kill as many human beings as quickly as possible. talk about the challenges. because i know there are 40 democrats in the house that are going to fight getting rid of assault weapons. of course, most of the republicans are going to fight it. what's the great challenge there? >> i think that you're right, joe, and general mcchrystal was
right, these are weapons of war. they are not weapons that you go hunting with or really that you can protect yourself with. you know, there is going to be a discussion. you know, starting today, we're going to hear it from governor cuomo. the vice president's having a series of meetings today. he's going to come out with a series of proposals very soon. assault weapons will most likely be part of that. we had an assault weapons ban. it expired in 2004. we've been having a debate about it ever since. i think the challenge is to put something on the table that has meat to it. as governor cuomo said, there's more holes in these laws than a piece of swiss cheese. you know, i think that we're at a different time. there will be a strong lobby against an assault weapons ban, but we have to change the conversation. they need to -- if they want to block an assault weapons ban, whether it's the nra or a different lobby, they need to explain why the american people need an assault weapon. look at the young children at newtown. they were shot several times, each one of them, because of
that assault weapon -- those assault weapons. and you know, it's, i think, an agreement that there would have been less carnage if assault weapons were illegal. >> that's another thing. again, my military friends have been telling me. there's no doubt about it that it unfortunately made the killer's job so much easier. the same thing in oregon at the mall. >> right. >> the same thing at aurora. >> tucson. >> same thing in tucson. you know, these extreme positions. >> yeah. >> you push -- you push people and ask the question. >> yes. >> which i've done with my allies, political allies, why do you need an assault weapon? you do know that, like, 90% of the hunters don't need an assault weapon. when i say everybody i talk to from northwest florida, not from the upper west side, not from greenwich. >> gun enthusiasts. >> the gun enthusiasts from
northwest florida first baptist church of pensacola, florida, that have been hunting with their daddies and granddaddyes since they were 6, 7, 8 in the woods north of crestview and funiac springs, all through there, they're all asking the question, why do these guys need assault weapons? >> who else is asking that and said it very clearly is scalia. so justice scalia, the strongest supporter of the second amendment on the supreme court, said this amendment does not apply to assault weapons. no way. there is no constitutional issue here. there's no claim by anybody who is on any side of this in the legal system that the second amendment has anything to do with protecting the rights of people to assault weapons. >> this is the same justice scalia that wrote the opinion in heller that told me the second amendment meant what i believed it meant, that washington, d.c.,
could not ban americans -- could not ban residents from having handguns in their house to protect themselves. but even that opinion, very clearly states that this does not apply. >> absolutely. >> to assault weapons. this does not apply to governments passing other regulations to keep americans safe. what did scalia say? scalia said and heller said, americans have a right to have a handgun in their house to protect themselves. the second amendment -- and that's one of the things i gave cruz, senator cruz, problems, ted cruz, for saying that, you know, this assault weapon ban is unconstitutional. no, it's not. and if he's a lawyer and people tell me he's a very good lawyer, he needs to go back and read heller. scalia could not be more clear. >> i'd like to have him on. >> this is about handguns in the house. >> we should. >> so you can kill anybody that comes into your house that wants to do your family harm. >> we've asked him ten times to be on. >> well, we'll ask him 11.
he might be scared. i don't know. some of these people -- >> i know. >> some people get scared, they don't like them coming on because you don't ask them three minutes' worth of questions. you don't massage the ego. >> i wonder if one way of thinking about this in a broader way is assault weapons are the drunk driving in a prohibition debate. >> yes. >> that's the false choice here. >> right. >> nobody's talking about prohibition. we're not talking about taking all the liquor away. what we're talking about is irresponsible, deadly behavior with something that in moderation, which is to say in the form of a shotgun or something else, can be more culturally acceptable. >> i keep talking about my military friends because i've been talking to them since this gun debate started. and one friend that served in the army for 0 years -- it's funny you say that -- because he said, you know, why do people want these assault weapons? because they're fun. >> exactly. >> you go to -- >> play acting.
>> -- the shooting range, and you shoot those things. he said, they make you feel like a man. they're really, really cool and they're really fun. but then he said, after newtown, this is a guy that's never voted for a democrat in his life. he said you know what else is fun? getting really drunk, getting behind the wheel of your car and driving through town 90 miles an hour. he goes, that is fun. but we as a society have decided that we probably want to regulate that form of behavior. and by the way, that whole slippery slope argument that the nra has raised millions of dollars off of over the past 20 years, it no longer applies because anthony scalia interpreted the second amendment the way it should be interpreted. americans have a right to keep and bear arms. forget the militia language. we have a right to have handguns in our house to kill people that come into our house who want to do our family harm. we have a right to have shotguns in the back of our pickup trucks, take them out and go deer hunting.
to go hunting. we've got a right to have rifles to go deer hunting. we've got a right. but these assault weapons, we don't have that right. >> that's the drunk driving of gun ownership. assault weapons. >> i got a great letter from a woman in australia because in 1995, they banned the assault weapons. they said, if you're going to shoot them, you shoot them at a club. you shoot them after very extensive licensing. the woman wrote to me, said i love guns. i love shooting, but i also loved this ban. this is okay with me. i go to my club. i shoot. everything's safe. she said i don't want one at time. if i had one at home, the police have the right to come in, see whether it's being safely stored. i don't want any of that. i can go shoot. i can go have that excitement, but it's at a club, and it's made the country safe, and there hasn't been one mass killing in australia since then. >> you know, i went up to newtown the morning after christmas, before i was going out of town, we just went up there again and had a woman come
up to me who was a newtown resident. we were in sandy hook and we were walking down, looking at the memorials. it was like 6:00, 7:00 in the morning. and she said, my family, you know, we're hunters up here. we're all hunters up here. just like the woman you were talking about. my family. we just don't need assault weapons. like you said, maybe that -- maybe we use the australian approach. >> it's working. and the people support it. all right. stephanie cutter, thank you so much. >> thank you, stephanie. >> jeffrey, stay with us if you can. still ahead, fresh off his state of the state address, new jersey governor chris christie joins us on set. and next, the idea of a complete troop withdrawal from afghanistan, a realistic possibility at the end of 2014? >> let's hope so. >> we'll discuss the possible white house plan with nbc's chuck todd and peter alexander. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. with the spark miles card from capital one, thor gets great rewards for his small business!
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welcome back to "morning joe." a live look at the white house. joining us now from washington, nbc news chief white house correspondent and political director and host of "the daily rundown," chuck todd. and from the white house, nbc news white house correspondent, peter alexander. it looks like it's a little cold out there. peter, just real quickly, the reporting about this potential plan to withdraw completely by the end of 2014, what do you know? >> reporter: well, we know obviously that the white house is considering what they refer to as the zero option, where they would take out all the u.s. troops in afghanistan. i think it's about 15,000 there, that was the number that had been offered by general allen and another military commanders at the 2014 deadline. the white house now saying it could go down to zero completely as you look at that headline in "the washington post" today. of course, this comes against the backdrop of the afghan president, hamid karzai, being here in washington. he's scheduled to meet with the president on friday. so the question is whether or not this is just sort of the white house setting its strategy up to try to negotiate with
karzai about what its plans will be going forward or not. and also against the backdrop of chuck hagel, you know, his name, he will face confirmation as part of the national security team. and the president and his advisors have said to us publicly and privately that they feel strongly that having someone that has military service on his resume will help the president as he tries to draw down troop levels. if he draws it down to zero, having someone like chuck hagel on their side, they believe, would be a significant asset. >> chuck todd, vice president biden and the nra planning to meet. give us the background, if you can, on that. set up the dynamic in that meeting. >> well, both of them have to do the meeting, right? pr wise, the white house has to -- had to invite the nra, and the nra couldn't say so. so this meeting's going to be had, but i have pretty low expectations. when you saw, based on what we saw with wayne lapierre when he came on "meet the press" and his
own press conference, i think the two sides are going to be very far apart. there was only one item on what appears to be biden's agenda, when you look at what they think they can get done versus what they are going to push, there was really only one item there that they might have nra support in, and that is forcing states, governments, to participate more in the mental health check, in those mental health -- there's too many states. it's a voluntary thing. they don't always put all of this information into this federal database on mental health. and that was the one surprising thing i took away from lapierre's interview on "meet the press," was that there would be nra support for that which, of course, is not exactly the most states-rights-oriented position to take when you're forcing states, this mandate on mental health. you could see maybe there's common ground there, but on anything else, mika, this is going to be -- this is mostly for show. for both sides. >> jon meacham.
>> i just wanted to ask peter on afghanistan, to what extent pakistan is playing a role in these conversations. >> reporter: that's a good question. obviously pakistan will have to play a significant role. we're trying to get more information on that as we go forward. having been in pakistan just more than a year ago for the death of osama bin laden, the challenges that exist there are as great as any, especially given waziristan and the areas where the two countries border, but also those avenues for the u.s. to be able to receive all of the munitions that it needs and its supply lines so pakistan will clearly be critical in terms of the u.s. conversation going forward. >> steve rattner? >> so chuck, just back to guns for a second. any guesses yet on what the shape of an obama package would look like and when it would come? >> well, it seems -- first of all, they said it's going to be in the state of the union. that's number one. the second is that it would -- you know, there seems to be that they're going around -- they want to push something on the magazines.
push more on this mental health check aspect. i think they're going to throw the assault weapons thing in there, but, you know, i don't know how far -- even they're being realistic as to whether politically that's even possible with this congress to get that in there. but i think that they're sort of circulating around the mental health and improving that database and the magazines. and it seems to me the magazines politically might be their best shot at this. >> dr. sachs. >> peter, i wanted to come back to afghanistan. we're jumping back and forth. we've been hearing for four years that 2014 was the end date. now they're saying it may be the end. isn't this actually backing off from commitments? is this softening up to leave troops there? what do you make of that? >> reporter: well, i mean, there are a variety of numbers that are being thrown around right now. at least on the conference call that we heard yesterday here at the white house with ben rhodes and some of the others, the numbers that have been discussed
obviously privately are from 3,000 to 9,000 troops perhaps being held over. i think the number is at 66,000 right now. general allen, as we noted, has suggested closer to 15,000 as the number that they would prefer. but it appears obviously that this is part of the u.s. strategy in its conversations with hamid karzai as it tries to get greater support from the afghans that they need, as the white house says frequently, need to step up. as they indicate, their two goals were simple, to try to make sure that al qaeda didn't have a safe haven in that country and to also make sure that the afghan troops could defend and fight for themselves. and at this point, it's not all that clear that either one of those things has come to the fruition at least that the u.s. had desired or that's in the u.s. best interest to disappear altogether. seemingly that vacuum would be easily filled by america's enemies. >> peter alexander, thank you. and chuck, we'll see you on "the daily rundown" right after "morning joe." and dr. sachs, thank youville. good to have you on the show.
>> thanks a lot. coming up, he's enjoying a 73% approval rating in his stho state, and he's gracing this week's cover of "time" magazine. governor chris christie will join us. he's standing by in the green room. >> look at him. >> what did we do? he's already mad? really? okay. we'll be right back. [ dad ] find it? ya. alright, another one just like that. right in the old bucket. good toss! see that's much better! that was good. you had your shoulder pointed, you kept your eyes on your target. let's do it again -- watch me. just like that one... [ male announcer ] the durability of the volkswagen passat. pass down something he will be grateful for. that's the power of german engineering.
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up next, governor chris christie joins the table. and now i know why -- hi, chris -- now i know why i'm always cold in the studio. it is so great to see you. have a seat. welcome. you wear long johns. you're wearing them right now, meacham is wearing long johns. >> don't make that up. >> yeah. >> outrageous. >> it was quite a sight. we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] where do you turn for legal matters?
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we don't argue much. we really don't. meg usually just gets her way, and i go along with it. i think it worked for matt because i did it for him. when i'm the one cooking, i'm the one calculating the points. i can microwave things. you get to eat real food. we still get to go out. we're just so much smarter about it. we can keep each other in check. going, "okay, i see you." we've lost about 110 pounds together.
it helped our love life. happy wife, happy life, right? right. [ jennifer ] weight watchers online. the power of weight watchers completely online. join for free today. there's only one group to blame for the continued suffering of these innocent victims, the house majority and their speaker, john boehner.
we respond to innocent victims of natural disasters not as republicans or democrats but as americans. or at least we did until last night. last night the house of representatives failed that most basic test of public service, and they did so with callous indifference to the suffering of the people of my state. i called the speaker four times last night after 11:20. and he did not take my calls. >> wow. all right. >> well, it's good he's holding back now. joining us now -- >> tell us what you really think. >> republican governor of new jersey, chris christie is on the set with us. >> good morning. >> good to have you here. how's is feeling, mr. 73%? >> enjoy it while you can.
>> it all goes downhill from here. >> churchill, george h.w. bush, you know, be careful. spend it while you got it. >> the whole idea of putting political capital together is to spend it down. spend it down and hopefully you do something good with it. that allows your numbers to go back up again so you can spend some more. i said this when i was u.s. attorney. we'd win a lot of cases. and i'd say we'll push the envelope a little more on some of these things. they'd say why? i'm collecting all these chips. i'm not leaving them in the drawer for the next guy. i earned them. it's my obligation to spend them. >> there was another guy in 2004 who said that. >> you've got to be smart about how you spend it. listen, i think the concept was right. i think bush was right. you've got to spend it wisely and effectively to get things done. and if you get things done, you earn more. if you don't get things done, then people get frustrated. >> we talk about how the republican party is damaged, the brand is damaged, and you really have to draw a line between
washington republicans and republicans out in the country. we still controlled 60% of the governorships, as you know very well. there are a lot of governors like you who are actually doing pretty darn well. you've got a 73% approval rating in the bluest of blue states, the highest of any republican. what are you getting right that republicans in washington, d.c., are getting so wrong? what don't they get? >> we're compromising when we need to. i'm in divided government. so i have democratic senate and democratic assembly. so what that means is that i'm not going to get everything i want. so i wake up every morning knowing that even though i think i'm right, i'm not going to get everything i want. so i have to decide what are the most important things to me? and of that list, what do i think i can convince them of? and then get those things done. >> why is it that you figured this out, but politicians in washington have not? you know, we've had people on the show before that have said it's a spending problem in washington. i will never, as long as i live,
compromise with the democrats on taxes. and i say, you know what? i agree with you completely. i think it is wrong to raise taxes on americans, and it is a spending problem. but we've got this guy named james madison with there's a separation of powers. why don't they get that? >> i don't know. i don't know. it seemed pretty self-evident. >> like they're a brain surgeon. they wouldn't say i refuse to operate on the left side of the brain. i'm just not going to do it! you've got to get things done! >> that's what the public really, i think, is hungering for, is to see things get done. and that's why republican governors are doing well. you look across the country, and last year in the election, republicans lost at every level in the federal system, but in the state system, we added a governor. we went from 29 to 30 republican governors. we didn't lose an incumbent, and we added pat mccorey in north carolina. >> plus we've got the majority of state senators across america, the representative in state houses across america. republicans are doing well outside of washington. >> because we're governing.
that's the difference. and we're getting things done and compromising where we need to in places like my state where you have divided government, you've got to compromise and get things done. it's not a dirty word. but also, remember something. we put up 2% on property taxes, health reform is going to save $120 billion over the next 30 years. it's not like you can't do conservative things as well in a state like ours, but you have to work hard at it, and you have to compromise. >> just coming back to joe's question, to put it more directly, do you think the problem in washington is a structural one? is there something about washington that's different from trenton? do you think it's a problem of people in the sense that you think washington is more ideologically polarized than new jersey? or to be very direct, do you think it's a problem of leadership in the white house? >> yes. to all those. i think that the gerrymandering of districts across the country has led to people being more concerned about primaries than they're concerned about general elections. and therefore it pushes you further away from being willing to compromise. i think there's a people problem in that they're not establishing
a congress anymore, the relationships that they need across the aisle with each other, talking to each other. you know, you can't sit down for the first time at a negotiation table for the first time and expect that you're going to trust each other. you're not. but if you develop relationships over time, you can. and i've said over and over again that i think this is the place where the president has been most deficient in his leadership. is establishing relationships with people in washington that he needed to establish relationships with. the fact that the vice president had to sit with mitch mcconnell to get that done shows that the president isn't getting it done. and he's lucky he has vice president biden who has those relationships, or else this white house would have no relationships on the hill. >> okay. i could name some republicans who seem like they don't do well with relationships as well. >> he didn't ask me about that. by the way, to be fair, i said to steve that there's not good relationships on the hill among republicans and democrats which means there's responsibility on both sides for that. >> there's this concern that --
>> he's the president. >> i get that. >> there's one president, there's one governor. >> when you get to washington, what happens to the mind of a politician? and especially on difficult issues. so let me ask you a question. if you were in washington right now, and i'm looking at new jersey's gun laws as they stand at this point, where would you stand on assault weapons bans and gun legislation? >> what i would say is if all you're going to do is legislate on guns, you're not dealing with the whole issue. you've got to do stuff on guns, but you also have to deal with mental health and substance abuse. because if you don't, then all you're doing is being political. >> i agree with that. you agree there should be new legislation on assault weapons? >> i think there has to be a complete package of all that stuff being dealt with at once. deal with the weapons you think you need to deal with. but if you don't deal with mental health issues, substance abuse issues and you don't deal with violence in video games in the media, if you don't, you're not going to eliminate or reduce the problem in my view because that disturbed young man in
connecticut, his mother legally owned those guns in connecticut which is a pretty tough gun law state. and why wasn't he getting mental health treatment? if that young man had cancer, his mother would not have hesitated to bring him to the doctor to get his cancer treated. but somehow with mental illness, there's such a stigma to it because we don't talk about it. i'll give you an example in camden. we had a young mother addicted to crack who decapitated her child, high on crack, and then killed herself. now, what we've done in new jersey is i signed into law an initiative i put forward which is now for first-time drug offenders, no more going to jail. you go mandatory to rehab for a year. warehousing these people isn't working. and we need to get these people treatment. it's an illness. so i think we have to have that entire discussion. and i think if we politicized it, mika, and just talk about one thing, then we're going to lose it. >> i agree, but if it were
comprehensive -- >> if it was comprehensive, there's no doubt in my mind that we could come to an area of compromise. but it's got to be comprehensive. and if it isn't, then you're going to have the same kind of gridlock in washington you've had all along. >> meacham. >> isn't one of the problems legislating the mental health registry or privacy concerns, you're talking about communities, families realizing that people who need help should get help and therefore cities, states, volunteer organizations should be there. so there's a legislative part of this, but there's also a cultural part. >> there's no question, jon. but i think that in the conversation about the legislative part, you can start to lower the stigma on the cultural part. if we're all talking about it. the problem is we don't talk about it. because we think there's something wrong -- you know, that a mental illness somehow makes you less of a person. and i think that's the problem. and same thing with drug and alcohol abuse. a person goes to rehab for the first time, everybody salutes the person, pats them on the back, we love them.
they have one relapse, they're a bum. we've got to understand the naturerelapse, they're a bum. we got to understand the nature of these illnesses and how they affect violence. you have kids. i don't let games like call of duty in my house for ps3 and xbox. that's a decision we've made. you cannot tell me that a kid sitting in a basement for hours playing call of duty and killing people over and over and over again does not desensitize that child to the real life effects of violence. >> i complete agree. >> it's violence control more than gun control. >> absolutely right. >> how about making our society just a little bit better? you know, all around. more inclusive and understanding to people who suffer from mental illnesses, not having our kids playing game where is they simulate how to commit mass murders. i think we could all agree we'd be better off. >> this kid went down to his basement and he slaughtered people -- >> for hours. >> simulated for hours. by the way, i've been getting some criticism by extremists on the right for saying that we got
to look at the magazines, the high capacity magazines. we've got to look at the assault weapons. and we've got to ban some of these things. but i will tell you i found -- most, again, of my conservative friends and supporters agree. these people don't need -- survivalists don't need assault weapons. they don't need these high capacity clips. i've been getting a lot more grief, chris, from liberals. they'll say the second amendment is not absolute. but then you talk about movies. you talk about, you know, porn violence. which is what it is. you talk about video games. they go crazy and basically accuse you of burning the american flag and ripping the constitution to shreds. and they are the absolutist nuts. and the first amendment, which you and i know because we sat through law school. we understand there are limits to the first amendment. there need to be limits to the
first amendment on -- on -- there are. and there need to be limits to the second amendment and there are. >> that's the hypocrisy of this amendment. what are we going to do with one side of this because folks are less comfortable dealing with and talking about the violence in media and violence in these video games. we need to be doing something about that, too. the ultimate way and best way to do it would be for parents to self-police. as i said, we make that decision, mary pat and i do. we also know our kids go to other people's houses who have this stuff. so they get exposed to it anyway. not in the same volume. so we do need to have that conversation. and you cannot tell me it did not have an effect on this child. >> it did. >> you can't tell me it didn't. >> how is the state doing? i shouldn't have to ask you if you're over 70% approval. >> i think it's going great. >> we have a lot of work to do. we have 41,000 families still displaced from their homes.
although today's a great day, first day of a signal to something better, belmar will start rebuilding their boardwalk today. i'm going there later this morning to start the rebuilding of that boardwalk. seaside heights is going to do it, too. where you just saw that road washed out, that road's almost completely rebuilt now. we're getting there. the federal package coming will help us significantly to be able to speed up the process of getting federal money in there to do it. but the fact is that it's a tough state. people are -- people are anxious. if you don't live in new jersey or vacation at the jersey shore, it is very difficult to understand the kind of pull the jersey shore has on people who have spent time there. but people are really committed to wanting to get that rebuilt and get it back to at least close to where it was before. so i think things are going okay. but, you know, we've got a huge challenge ahead of us. the biggest infrastructure challenge the state's probably ever faced. >> yeah. in history. governor chris christie, thank you. good to have you on the show. >> happy to be back.
>> remember what john neesam said. pulitzer prize winning author. it's all downhill from here. >> appreciate that. coming up, "hardball's" chris matthews. more "morning joe" in just a moment. with the spark miles card from capital one, thor gets great rewards for his small business! your boa! [ garth ] thor's small business earns double miles on every purchase, every day! ahh, the new fabrics. put it on my spark card. ow. [ garth ] why settle for less? the spiked heels are working. wait! [ garth ] great businesses deserve great rewards. [ male announcer ] the spark business card from capital one. choose unlimited rewards with double miles or 2% cash back on every purchase, every day! what's in your wallet? [ cheers and applause ]
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>> now, when you're a quarterback at alabama, you see that lovely lady there? that's a.j. mccarron's girlfriend. i tell you, quarterbacks, you get all the good looking women. >> good morning. it's 8:00 on the east coast. 5:00 a.m. on the west coast. time to wake up, everyone, as you take a live look at new york city. back with us onset we have steve rattner, john meacham and cnbc's brian schactman. >> are you serious? she's on "the new york post" now? >> because she got, like, 100,000 twitter followers out of it. >> kobe bryant, like, invited her to a game? here's the deal. i was watching the game in the stands. i had no idea, like, what espn was doing to keep viewers. i turned to my son and i said, so, how is espn selling this to keep people from changing the channel? >> now you know. >> now i know. by halftime people said, hey,
have you heard that brent musburger is being really, really creepy? >> creep man. spooky. >> it was like the wave in the '80s would spread around the stadium. musburger is being creepy. it was spreading around the stadium. get over it. >> you had to find something to talk about. >> if wow had been cut out, i think he might have made it okay. but you were on that really early yesterday. it was the number one takeaway, joe, from the game. >> here's the deal. i'm dead serious. i'm dead serious. this is how women look at university of alabama. no. i'm dead serious. i'm not really that shocked. >> you don't want to end up like brent musburger. >> no, no, no. it's the opposite of brent musburger. and i'm dead serious. if you go to old miss, if you go to the university of alabama, if you go to auburn, even, this is -- i guess you yankees aren't used to -- >> we don't have that in the north. >> no. i'm dead serious. you look at -- you know what?
seriously, i looked at that picture and said she's pretty. you know what she looks like? she looks like a lot of other really pretty sorority girls at university of alabama or ole miss or auburn or i don't know. do you guys have them up at swany? >> absolutely. >> sororities? >> absolutely. >> i'm dead serious. it's just not all that. brent, move on. you got a dynasty. you got a dynasty. >> can i say this is a different kind of scc dynasty. >> but we're used to it. >> all right. this is not going to go on for nine minutes. >> you know what is going to go on for nine minutes, though, seriously? seriously? aig? you know what? the bailout from the very beginning, i was against it. and i know it's made a lot of money. but i was against three pages and, you know, as much money as
they threw around. now we're talking about suing the government for us? bailing them out of their reckless stupidity? >> yeah. a guy comes by with a lifeboat. you get in the lifeboat. it gets you back to shore. they send you a bill and you pay it. then you say later, that's too much. >> the controversy, by the way, it all caused at the time has gone away. >> first of all the government's just getting out of aig. this is the moment for these people to rise up. secondly you have the former chairman of aig who's mightily angry at what happened to him. he lost his job. the stock -- 92% of the stock was taken by the government. he's a fighting guy. he went in and said let's sue the you know whats and get back some of ours. the point they make, basic point they make which i have zero sympathy for is they got a worse deal than the other banks got. >> give me a break. we bailed them out. >> the thing needs to be pointed out and you do is that hank
greenberg's driving the bus on this. the company isn't initiating it. they have to decide whether they're going to attach themselves to this suit. and they supposedly have the fiduciary responsibility to shareholders to consider it. in the end i don't know what you think but i think it's going to be hard to go against the government on this one. i think it's going to be a lot of ran kcor but i think -- >> they've got fiduciary responsibility to shareholders. i can't think of anything that's going to hurt the company more than this. this is horrific publicity they'll be paying for for some time. you have a bank like bank of america or jp morgan chase decide they're going to raise atm fees by .0001%. and, you know, of their fee. and everybody freaks out. and it's a serious crisis. for aig, man. >> the fact is if the government had not gone in they would have liquidated. they would have been lehman
brothers. they would have been dust. everybody would have lost their jobs. the government put a massive amount of money into that company. i agree with brian. i don't think they're going to go back at it. the reaction in washington yesterday, even in new york, the idea of this was so over the top it's hard to imagine they're going to come back and actually do something. >> if only there were a senator elected in washington -- z >> who cared about the consumer. >> that steve rattner supported that cared about the consumer. if only there were that person. >> you know what? there is. >> i'm so lucky. >> absolutely. you're going to come around on e lelizabeth warren. you just are. who doesn't? elizabeth warren said this on the issue. aig's reckless bets nearly crashed our entire economy. taxpayers across this country saved aig from ruin. and it would be outrageous for this company to turn around and sue the federal government because they think the deal wasn't generous enough. steve. >> so i agree with elizabeth
warren. who's completely right. >> that's all i need to hear. you just made my morning. check. right there. >> amazing what a victory does. >> come on. >> something about 1,000 fathers. something like that. something like that. i'm curious, mika. i'm reading "the new york times." >> oh, yes. >> and i'm -- i'm hurt. i'm hurt because you always told me, and this is why, of course, i was hopeful even though mitt romney lost that -- that the next four years would be better because you said barack obama cares about women so much. >> yeah. >> and i thought he did. but obama's remade inner circle has an all male look so far. you look at -- you look at barack obama's inner circle and you look at the chairman. and i can say chairman in the house of representatives. it's like they're all men. we are back in, like, 1950,
mika. >> i'm sorry. the caption underneath is really funny. yeah. >> all i can see is valerie's legs. >> love valerie. she's right there. >> they're all men. seriously. this is -- these are the guys that, like, were in "time" magazine in 1950. and all of the house -- all of the house chairmen are men. >> mm-hmm. we need more women in there. >> thank fwgod the nominees tha the president has out there are going to make it more diverse. >> very diverse. >> all white men. >> i think his policies, though, and his -- no. because you need to actually lift more women up over a series of generations in order to be able to get them to break this -- >> who better to do that than white man. >> you don't put someone in there for a token. >> in fairness, 43% of his appointments have been women. >> thank you, steve.
>> let's figure out george w. bush's. i bet it rivals that if not beats it. >> no doubt about it. no doubt about it. he wasn't afraid to actually have women in his cabinet. >> one of the first things this president did was work harder to make sure women are paid equally to men which they are not. which is a joke. because we work so much harder. and ultimately we have -- we bring much more to the table in terms of -- now to the new jersey governor and his state of the state address. not afraid to hire women on his cabinet. 73% approval rating. conservatives that hate chris christie, let me repeat that. chris christie has a 73% approval rating among voters. and unlike you, those of you lurched far out on the right, he actually wins elections. and he's going to win again in the bluest of blue states. he's now calling on lawmakers in
washington to quickly pass federal aid for hurricane sandy relief. what did christie focus on the most in this address? >> in his address yesterday he talked about the storm that reshaped the jersey shoreline and underscored the delayed response in federal funding when compared to other disasters. >> we as a state have waited 72 days, seven times longer than the victims of hurricane katrina waited. and one thing i hope everyone in america now clearly understands, new jersey, both republicans and democrats, will never stand silent when our citizens are being shortchanged. we have stood with the citizens of florida and alabama, mississippi and louisiana, iowa and vermont, california and missouri in their times of need. now i trust they will stand with us.
>> he also said washington could learn a thing or two from new jersey about the art of compromise. >> now, we've had our fights. we have stuck to our principles. but we have established a governing model for america that shows that even with heartfelt beliefs, bipartisan compromise is possible. achievement is the result. and progress for our people is the payoff. maybe the folks in washington in both parties could learn something from our record here in new jersey. >> you know, john meacham, dana milbank who occasionally writes a snarky column or two in the "washington post" actually offered a fairly broad supportive embrace of chris christie as the republican party's savior for obvious reasons. he says this. certainly the storm and more important christie's forceful response boosted the governor's standing. but the tea party's record lows and christie's record highs tell
a larger story. americans are crying out to end the ideological warfare that has developed into christie's signature in new jersey. he began his term promising tax cuts and fighting with teachers unions over tenure, pay, education, now he preaches reconciliation. a recuring theme in his state of the state address tuesday afternoon. john, yeah, he did that. but he never once compromised a single value. he fought the unions. he won. he got the unions coming to him to reform schools. and he's fought budget battles and he's won. he's won them on his terms. but he doesn't vilify the democrats. he works with them. and this is -- again, for some reason, for some reason in washington, d.c., and with certain members of the conservative entertainment complex that follow washington, d.c., actually working with the other side and winning is seen as a political sin. >> yeah.
the one nuance i'd add to that is from the bleachers is it's reflexive ideological wear fare. that's the problem. politics is about ideas. it should be. fights over education, fights over taxes are important. it's just the fact when you invest everything in your ideological position and decline to recognize that the nature of the republic is to give mutual concessions of opinion or we're not going to make it, then you're -- then you're in serious trouble. i think what -- one of the things that links both the aig thing, the guns debate, and i think the aid to hurricane victims is this remarkable capacity we have for political a.d.d. that is we absorb these stories so fast now. we become totally obsessed with them like a sponge for a very brief period of time. and then without political leadership like what christie is providing, like i think what
governor cuomo is providing, without that kind of leadership to remind people about what's important and to keep the fight going, then nothing happens. and the one thing that's the worst, i think, that keeps people disenchanted from politics is when nothing happens. coming up next from the upcoming debt ceiling fight to the rancor over chuck hagel's nomination for defense secretary, the political battles that are dominating the start of the president's second term. "hardball's" chris matthews joins the conversation. also ahead, she's mad as he lrk l and not going to take it anymore. actress laura dern takes us inside season two of her hbo hit series "enlightened" which she won a golden globe for last year. >> first -- >> he's never won a golden globe. >> has he won anything? has he even won our respect? >> no. >> yes. he won our respect a long time ago. >> really? they think he's a sweet boy,
right? >> we trust him. >> he's the cronkite of weather. >> he is. it's so funny you say that. you know who else said that? nobody. bill? >> thank you, guys. that was one for the reel that i will save for a long time. love you, too. good morning, everyone. the rain and thunderstorms continues up through texas. the warm air dominates the weather map. we'll be dealing with travel issues. if you're leaving the house in dallas flooded roadways in and around town. same with san antonio. picked up over 2 1/2 inches of rain in the last 24 hours. rain continues in the deep south. also watch out anywhere in louisiana. if you're waking up with us early in the northwest pretty strong storm system going through the northwest. a lot of heavy rains through olympia. seattle significant rain. snow levels are going to drop. the rockies are actually going to get hit over the next two days with a pretty good snowstorm just outside of boise all the way up through the mounta
mountainous terrain. wyoming also some pretty good snow. and the mountains of utah. it's not like winter's completely gone. it's going to be back. it's going to start in the west over the next couple days. it will slowly track across the country. look at these temperatures today. the january thaw continues at least till saturday or sunday for chicago. for the east coast your january thaw will end probably not till the middle of next week. another six or seven days of these unusually warm temperatures. dc, 58 degrees today. a shot at hitting 60 over the weekend. those cherry blossoms probably going to get confused. it even looks warm. union station, washington, d.c. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
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selena gomez is on the radio right now. is there a volume lower than mute? sorry. >> i saw larry king at dinner. but it might have been just the run of the mill goblin. >> dr. phil, why don't you shut the [ bleep ] up, you bald headed, big hill billy. no one else finds hayden panettiere intoll robl. is that a question? >> why so awkward and yelling where -- yelly?
>> malcolmalcolm in the middle. why not mushy in the middle? >> do you remember "malcolm in the middle"? >> i to. he's sort of involved in another tv series right now. >> i know. >> great, great, great actor. >> joining us now from washington, the host of msnbc's "hardball" chris matthews. chris's book "jack kennedy: elusive hero" now out in paperback. still on the best seller list. >> joe and mika, can i thank you for the wonderful christmas gift. i was blown away when i got home from my little vacation and there was that beautiful -- i think you call it a ski jacket. black. great. very stylish. great taste. i thank you so much. >> do you look good in it, chris? >> i think it looked good to those observe meging me, yes. it's really cool. you know how you get one piece
of clothing and you wear it till it falls apart? other stuff you put it in the back of the closet, never touch it? i think this is in the front of the closet category. >> oh, my goodness. those observing you agree. thank you. >> you got one, too. >> i don't know what you're talking about. >> everybody that didn't get one of these is a symbol of their friendship with joe and mika. >> oh, god. i'm going to go check the list. >> i liked the ski bow tie you sent me. >> sorry. >> chris, i want to talk about -- we've got a lot of things to talk about. we could talk about the debt limit. we could talk about gun control. but i want to talk about something that i've heard you discussing over the past decade. as you saw the republican party of george w. bush who in 2000 said that he wanted to have a limited foreign policy. he didn't -- he didn't want to engage in nation building. and you saw that turn into a republican party that was dominated by neocons. the thing i love about the chuck
hagel debate is it gives us republicans that believe in the sort of foreign policy that colin powell believes in, that bush 41 believes, brent scowcroft believes in, hagel gives us a person we can wrangle around and defend in support of limited military venturism. i think that's good for republican party, good for the obama cabinet, i think it's good for america. >> i agree. i voted for bush. one of the reasons i voted for bush, first time i voted republican for president and maybe the last time for a while is because he said we wanted humility in our foreign policy. that struck a cord with me. we're trying to be the world policemen. you're right. i think this debate's going to be about how big a role -- i thought hagel's probably the most controversial thing he said, we know the other controversial things. one that'll be a part of the hearings when he comes up for the job is when he said we shouldn't be a continuing occupying force in the middle east. some people, i believe, pretty much believe we should.
we should be the big dog in the middle east. they think that's very helpful to our foreign policy. others go wait a minute. all we do is kill arabs on international television every night. islamic people. we're just getting hated and hated and hated. what's the point? are we really gaining anything? i think that is going to be the debate. >> it really is. we've had occupation for a decade now. 11 years now. and i know what the neocons believe. and they certainly, you know, they certainly have a right to believe that. i can tell you most republican senators we talk to privately don't want us to engage in nation building globally. and they're just -- they're afraid to come out and go against what the party orthodox has been over the past decade. boy, i think it's critical as a nation we narrow our focus and, again, take more of a colin powell, chuck hagel approach than a paul wolfowitz approach.
>> why are we involved, for example, during the iraq war. i just watched "the green zone." a great movie. why did we take apart the iraqi army? we had an existing structure to hold that country together. we could have gotten out of there a lot faster. because of the anti-baathist attitudes of some on the right. they hate the baathist party of iraq and syria. they don't like their ideology. i understand they don't. it's not our fight to make. why are we involved in that fight? it's a little sophisticated but i think we ought to be aware of different fights. shiia versus sunni. opposition to bathiathism. >> just to look at this from a financial point of view, people on the show yesterday talked a lot about david brooks's great column where he made clear we have a guns and butter situation. we've made a decision we want to keep all this health care. we want to keep all these services. to make these numbers work at all you have to attack defense.
new york spends 4. -- we spent 4.5% of our gdp on defense. europe spends 1.5% of gdp on defense. we have to i think economically become more like europe in that respect if we're going to deal with this budget problem. >> i think we have to match our resources with our commitments and be careful about making commitments we can't meet. i think that's the big challenge of the budgeting problem that hagel's going to have to face if he gets confirmed. can i just say what i really liked your last guest, i know it's not on topic right now, i think this fellow christie has the potential to be the wendel wilkie of the next term, next election. i think his ability to work across the aisle the way wilkie did in the months before world war ii when he came out for lend lease, conscription, and backed roosevelt on the big issues of our time, driving the right in the republican party crazy, he became to me a really hero to me. he gave roosevelt the best fight of his life. if hillary clinton runs she'll probably be unbeatable. the guy who would give her the best fight might be christie. it would also bring back that
moderate wing of the republican party which has been in disrepair for years now. >> by the way, here's what's so fascinating about guys like chris christie. chris is in the moderate wing of the republican party. but a decade ago he would have been in the far right of the republican party. he's pro life. if social issues is your thing, he's pro life. more importantly, my thing is economic issues. you know, john meacham, he has taken it to the left in new jersey in fight after fight and he's won. so why don't conservatives love this guy? >> because he's threatening reflexive orthodoxy. and reflexive orthodoxy is very comfortable. it's easier to hold theological views than historical empirical ones because you don't have to let different evidence in. one thing i want to ask chris, a guy you worked with when you were working for o'neill, reagan
famously said i didn't leave the democratic party. the democratic party left me. when are we going to start hearing republicans saying, i didn't leave the republican party, the republican party left me? >> well, i think it's politics. i think the republican party had a tremendous advantage. they could have won this last presidential election. and i -- i am on the left. center left. somewhere in there. i haven't voted republican many times in my life. but i have a few times. i really think they blew it on the economic issues. joe i know agrees with this. their greatest strength in the world was the indignation every republican feels and a lot of democrats about government spending. it's out of hand. it just keeps growing and growing. nobody's got cost controls on health care. nobody's figured out the demographic issue. nobody on the left seems to want to do it. they don't have the instinct for it. the republicans have that great strength. what did they do? they win the first debate on economics. the other guy, i mean, romney came on like gang busters. he was fabulous that first debate. commanding even. if he had stayed on that line he could have won the election. instead they go off to benghazi.
the biggest joke of the campaign, the rape candidate for senator. which one? you had a couple of them out there. bad apples do spoil the bunch. i do think they got really screwed up with their platform about personhood. all this stuff that has nothing to do with winning the american middle. yet romney could have squeaked in there if they'd stayed on the economic front. if i were them i'd talk about spending and nothing else the american people aren't thinking about. >> exactly. i couldn't agree more. >> that's the problem in the party, though. that is exactly it. spending is the issue. it's the fundamental issue. >> spending on what? >> exactly. conservatives may not love chris christie. but the party does. they courted him. they wanted him to run. they are still courting him. he presents exactly the dilemma that the party has to deal with. because are they going to be conservatives and republicans and mainstream? or are they not? >> i'm sorry. go ahead. >> the problem is, what spending do you cut? i take your point, chris, that
the electorate wants spending cut. what? 70% as we talked about on this show of tea party members do not want medicare cut. so what happens when you actually get there and say we're going -- >> you're the best guy in the world at this, steve. you know how to do the tech no cattic stuff and solving the problems. if the democrat party's the governing party and government party, let's face it, it is, it's got the responsibility to figure out these challenges. figure out cost containment. figure out how we deal with health care ballooning because of demographics. we got to figure it out on the left because the right doesn't want to figure it out. they want to run against it. >> that's what chris christie did in new jersey when he had a -- we're talking about a 72% approval rating now. i was mocked on twitter for two years about chris christie's approval ratings in new jersey. >> you knocked off an incumbent governor. do you know how hard that is in the northeast? people don't beat incumbent governors generally in the northeast. it's very tough. >> a multimillionaire incumbent governor. >> beating corzine.
>> i want to underline what you said. republicans need to hear it this morning. if you want to be the majority party again, if you want to win senate seats again, if you want to win the presidency again you need to listen to what chris said. you're exactly right, chris. we should have been talking economics. instead we were talking about contraception. >> it's indignation, joe. >> we should have been -- let me finish one second. we should have been talking about economics. instead, you know, we were -- we were talking about the things that herman cain would be talking about. or sarah palin would be talking about. we should be talking about economics now. but you're right. people are still talking about benghazi. i talked to a senior member on the house floor who really believes the pathway to a majority in 2014 is benghazi. i was like, are you kidding me? we should be talking about economics, chris. but i'll tell you what, we're going to have people talking about assault weapons and trying to defend assault weapons. we are so wildly out of the mainstream. we should talk about economics. we should talk about real cuts. we should talk about balancing
the budget. and if we do that, chris, you know better than anybody, we win. if the debate's on economics, we beat you guys every time. if the debate's on contraception, assault weapons, you look at dick lugar for a second. dick lugar was run out of town, chris, because he voted -- he voted on a treaty with the president regarding russia. and what did we get? we got murdoch and we lost. this party has to focus. >> can't say it better. i tell you, the republican party in the northeast, i think if christie gets the nomination he brings it back. he has the union card. he's pro life. you need that union card in the republican party. once you got it you don't have to talk about it. he can talk about economics. he can talk about indignation. the great thing about christie, he is better at than anybody i've seen in politics, indignation. the anger the average american feels about the loose spending of the federal government. the out of control nature of our bureaucracy. when he says it's none of your
business, that's so south jersey. my relatives that live over there love him for that. that attitude. don't mess with me. you're messing with me when you can't control government spending. that's what i think people feel. i think it's a great republican instinct and they blew it. >> i want to show you these numbers too, chris. a lot of republicans are wringing their hands, how do we get hispanics to vote for us? nonwhite voters to vote for us? younger people to vote for us? the latest chris christie approval ratings coming out of new jersey, again, this pro life, conservative, economically right winged guy who has taken on unions time and time again, and one time and time again has a 69% approval rating with nonwhite voters. 70% approval rating among women. and a 62% approval rating among democrats. chris, so much of this is just tone. the guy saying i'm going to fight. and you may not agree with me all the time. >> not day trading politically. >> i'm going to fight for you. >> the minority vote is very
interesting. where the republican party got in trouble was in the '60s with african-americans. they used to get a third of the black vote. it's the party of lincoln. they had about one out of three black votes nationwide. then it went to about 90/10 democrat. because of the way that nixon and the rest of them blew it with the southern strategy and all that stuff that happened in the '60s. the republican party doesn't need to match the democrats when it comes to minorities. it simply has to be in the game. if they get a third of the black vote in the big states like new york, pennsylvania, new jersey, illinois, ohio, if they get a third of the black vote to be blunt about it they only lose a net third. they get a third, lose two-thirds, they lose a net third of the black. that means they can win statewide because of the rural vote and fight for the suburban vote. if republicans want to win they just have to contest the black vote. they got to get in the game again. that means credible candidates who really are pro black in terms of interests like rockefeller was and ed brook. they got to get in the game again. they don't have to win it. republicans can't just give up
on the black vote, give up on the hispanic vote. george w., one great thing he did. you and i know it well. great with hispanic. he cared about a real solution to the immigration problem. >> chris matthews, thank you very much. >> thank you, chris. >> thanks for the coat. >> stay warm and cozy in the coat. >> stay warm. >> the "morning joe" coat. see you this evening "hardball" 5:00 and 7:00 eastern time on msnbc. up next, laura dern takes us inside season two of hbo's hit show "enlightened." keep it right here on "morning joe." aig? we said we were going to turn it around, and we did. woman: we're helping joplin, missouri, come back from a devastating tornado. man: and now we're helping the east coast recover from hurricane sandy. we're a leading global insurance company, based right here in america. we've repaid every dollar america lent us. everything, plus a profit of more than $22 billion. for the american people. thank you, america. helping people recover and rebuild -- that's what we do. now let's bring on tomorrow.
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don't you feel an obligation? people are living under the allusion that the american dream is working for them. and it's rigged. by the guys at the tippee top. >> i may not be at the top, but i'm happy. >> no, you're not. you're miserable. you're a mole. you're paralyzed. >> well, i'm changing. i just joined the company gym. i got a discount because of my employee badge. i'm going to work out more. my aunt died and i just found out i got her timeshare. i'm going to go to the bahamas for two weeks a year. maybe i'm a mole. but i'm a happy mole. i don't want to lose what little i have, okay? >> you've already lost it. >> that was a scene. oh, my god, i love it.
i love it. it's the premiere of the new season of hbo's "enlightened." joining us now co-creator and star of the series laura dern. love her. this looks good. what i said to you when you got onset, mental health issues seem to be selling in shows a lot. >> we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore. network told us that line long ago. i think it's more true than ever. perhaps characters that are so deeply flawed that they're willing to risk all means that they'll actually use their voice in the world. and that's sort of the theme of our show. and i think why people are intrigued by it, perhaps those characters get to say things that some of us are too afraid to say. >> we're thinking them, though. >> exactly. we're all thinking them. >> for sure. >> people who haven't seen the show yet, give them the back story. of course, it's wildly successful. the critics love it. you've won a golden globe for it. >> you're a corporate exec.
you had a nervous breakdown after a messy affair. >> hello. it's just what happens to all of us. the breakdown was pretty ugly. and it was in the middle of the office place. so it was pretty messy. but she seemingly gets it together as one normally would by saying, yes, i've got to effect change by changing everyone but myself. >> that's the best kind of change in the world. >> exactly. >> it's so self-aware. not. >> starts with her mother. and her ex-husband. and when those things don't work, she takes on american corporation. and somehow that is a place she effects change this season. so it's pretty -- pretty exciting. >> meacham, this is pretty exciting that a series this good would come out of anything but richard plethler. >> despite plethler. >> even a stopped clock is right twice a day. >> now, now.
>> oh, richard. >> if you have laura dern, chances are -- >> you told me you were going to believe, richard. >> rit plethler, one of the great architects of our culture, truly. let's not be too nice to him. >> no. but he wears nice clothes. >> he does. >> very put together. >> he's very put together. >> he's well groomed. >> as john lennon would sing, there you stand with your l.a. tan and your new york -- >> that is by -- >> he is the most l.a. man in new york i've ever met and i love him for it. >> he is also -- he possesses a haute dorkdom that makes us look cool. >> let me say about richard plethler if i had to look to someone to say i want to play this complicated, flawed, crazy person who in the world tries to use her voice and becomes a whistle blower, he's the most fearless man truly in show business. politically subversive.
ready for you to tell any story. because i had done recount at hbo. i was so impressed at his willingness to really look at both sides and look at the entire story. and where the system failed us. and what we needed to do differently in our voting system. and he is a brave man at the helm. i'm just so impressed by how he runs that company. >> i think she's being too generous. >> no. i'm just trying to even out -- >> you grew up in show business. what do you take for the conventional wisdom, what do you make of the conventional wisdom that tv is the new cinema? that there are more risks, more creativity. >> you know, i've said before certainly working for hbo, i said you guys are like the ua of the '70s. they kind of are. it is when -- based on the economy taking such a hit, i think independent film was where we saw the greatest challenge. suddenly you could make an $80 million movie at a studio but you couldn't make a $3 million
movie. because there was no independent financing. so suddenly hbo and cable networks was this place where artists could tell their stories without really any involvement from anybody sort of telling them what they could and couldn't do. >> unbelievable. tv is where the action is at. what's it like working with your mom? >> it's awesome. we had worked together when i was in my early 20s. >> you had to say that, didn't you? >> i'm worried. laura dern, i don't see you as a suck up. you're going to tell the truth. >> i'm going to tell the truth. >> so what's it like working with your mom? >> actually, i said to her, and this is true. i said, mom, it's so crazy. like, in my 20s we worked together and every word you said trigger med me. now i'm 40 and we work together and every eighth word you say triggers me. there has been incremental growth. we have a blast. >> i think we all end up loving our moms much more as we get
older. >> and when we become moms. oh, my god. this is outrageous. >> really quickly, we got to go. i found out we have something in common. mississippi. >> we're mississippi kids. >> you lived in meridian, huh? >> oh, my god. i love mississippi. it's the best. >> same here. same here. all right. >> season two of "enlightened" debuts on sunday night on hbo at 9:30. laura dern, thank you so much. >> thank you, laura. >> great to have you on the show. >> thank you so much. >> we'll be right back with business for the better. [ male announcer ] where do you turn for legal matters?
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markets are looking for a positive open here. part of that is alcoa which starts earning season late yesterday and they had better than expected results. a lot of people think it's a proxy for the global economy. positive energy in the market. i also want to point out the energy information administration basically came out and said by the end of 2014, oil imports will be the lowest since 1987. you have production weigh up. demand pretty flat. and a lot of this has to do with the controversial concept of fraking. back to you. >> brian schactman, thanks again for your help this morning. we'll be right back with much more "morning joe." chronic osteoarthritis pain.
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tomorrow on "morning joe" the minds behind the new nbc comedy "1600 penn." former white house speech writer jon lovett. josh gad. remember him from book of mormon? also one of the stars of downton abbey, dan stevens will be here. >> why not lady mary? >> up next, what if anything did we learn today?
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