tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC October 2, 2009 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT
brand spanking new visitors center to receive that prize from nancy pelosi on tuesday. al he can? david? >> i have to ask you. as far as we're talking the head counts now for health care reform. do you get the sense they added any heads? or is the general feeling that the mark-up didn't really accomplish anything. >> i think it survived. this is the fifth committee out of congress. they call that an achievement. it has gone further than any other in the history of congress. the tough part, it is really yet to come when it gets to the floor. that i think they're looking at this as a positive. as long as they're moving the ball forward. they have to marry it up, if you will work that other senate committee's bill and then there are three others on the house side. the house side wants the public option. nancy pelosi said pits going to be in the house bill. when it come out of the house and they'll to have negotiate all oh again. so it is really going to be a different -- nothing is set now. nothing is guaranteed.
they're talking about having this all set and done. they don't want to have another recess like they did in august. so they are moving forward. they are thinking that this is a positive development. again, they're all looking at olympia snowe and any others that might want to jump the fence. >> thanks as always. make sure to check in first thing every morning. logon to firstread.msnbc.com. >> that's a wrap. blame it on rio. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. leading off tonight -- ♪ when my baby ♪ when my baby smiles at me i go
to rio de janeiro ♪ >> that's the hot news from copenhagen. the 2016 summer olympics won't be played in the u.s. blame it on rio. the old time capital of brazil, crime ridden but wildly exciting, has beat chicago. plus, florida congressman alan grayson, the guy who has caused all the noise starts us off tonight. he's proving his fellow democrats, and that includes the president, have overlooked a key lem in american politics. make the other guy play defense. like martin luther, he stood up to the powers that be and he is still standing. what does that say about what works in this national debate over health care? congressman alan grayson will be here. and has david letterman taught as you lesson on how to dig yourself out of a tough situation? has he proven the basic truth out of public relation?
the person that tilz something first is the one you believe. he believes he is the target of a $2 million target of a blackmail plot kofl this be his greatest hit? what about some more hanky panky? we've got more for you. senator john ensign in nevada did one hell of a job trying to find job and contracts for his former staffer. you know, the guy whose wife, the senator, was having the long affair with. the new york times reports that ensign, the senator, obtained a lobbying job and clients for his exlover's husband. and then in turn was lobbied by him. isn't that a sweet little circle of love? do you think any laws were broken? lets to go rio. if you want to see the 2016 olympics, you'll have to. president obama traveled to copenhagen to make the pitch for shy town but no cigar. the windy city got blown out in the first round of voting. does the president get an e for effort or an f for flop? or is this just a good example of a politician just having to do the best he can no matter what anybody says for his home town.
and john mccain's campaign manager, steve that smith, smart, honest, he said nominating sarah palin in 2012 would be the dumbest thing the republicans ever did. >> my honest view is that she would not be a winning candidate for the republican party in 2012. and in fact, were she done the nominee, we could have a catastrophic election result. >> catastrophic election result. i thought he was honest. that's coming in the side show tonight. did you notice that sarah palin always shows up in the side show? let's start tonight with democratic congressman alan grayson. i think you are a martin luther. i remember being there when the berlin wall came down. i was there with my colleague and he said, how did lootszer know he could stand up against the church? how did you know you could stand up to the republican? the real clowns out there. we can start with lixbaugh and the rest of them and you know
the whole crowd. what is his name, beck? the whole number of them. how come you knew the way to beat these guys was to put them on defense? >> because they're bullies. and a bully always backs down. don't we know that? that's what happened here. >> tell me about it. what has happened to you? did pelosi come along and tell to you cool it? did you get any mean looks from the republican on the floor like boehner? boehner does look like a golf here has just blown a putt all the time. >> you would know better than me, i guess. i can't really say. >> he looks like, he throws it down. he is ticked off. he throws it down. he plays like. that what have you learned in the couple of days of being the hot shot? >> what i've learned is people want a congressman who has guts, who says it like it is. for months we've been on the defensive. why? we have a plan. the other side doesn't. they have nothing. it has been 72 hours since i've
said this. where have we heard about the republican plan? who has stepped forward to explain, no, grayson was wrong. it's not true. all they do is their personal attacks. and it mean nothing because the american people deserve better than that and they know it. >> how come we've spent now 50 some years going back to harry truman with nightclub comics, all the way back to alan king talking about doctors, people talking about hmos and the problem of getting any kind of payment when you have a problem and all these problems with health insurance. the status quo has never looked so sweet as when the republican start to attack the democrats. why didn't the democrats spend the last year attacking the way thing are as a way of getting them fifl. isn't that the way you get a tire fixed? you say it is blown out. you say how great it will be when it is gets fixed. you say it is blown out and you have to fix it. why don't the democrats go after the problem and say they'll fix it than saying, gee, whiz, i have this new idea. the new idea hasn't worked.
it is the problem you have to focus on. >> they bought into this story, the story line that there was a need for bipartisanship. the republicans never attempted anything like bipartisanship. now we understand since i spoke out the. the cost of delay is death. we have 44,789 americans who die every year because they don't have health insurance. this is a harvard study. you don't have to take my word for it. 122 americans die every single day. so now the story line shouldn't be any longer, which republicans are going to join the bill. the story line should be, how can we save these american lives? and how quickly can we do it? >> you're a rarity. let talk. i don't think you're worried about losing your seat so lets talk about a congressman, you. >> i don't think that will happen ufl wouldn't believe the response we've gotten so far. we have other over 5,000 people come to grayson.com and make a contribution. our e-mail are running 4-1. >> what is your district like? i've looked up the numbers.
it looks close to me. what kind of district do you have in atlantic? >> i'm the first democrat to represent downtown orlando in 34 years. that's okay. if i have to choose between my job and saving lives, i know how to make that choice. the republicans said the national republican congressional congressional committee executive director said grayson is our number one target for 2010. maybe i'll be drawing other people's fire. i don't know. i do know that i'll make the right choice and i do know that democrats, republicans, independents, they want somebody with guts. >> are the republicans on the floor circling for you? i remember back in '93 when margie voted, it wasn't a tax increase for regular people. it was for the rich. are they circling around you because you've shown some today hone on this thing? athleti
athletics they have you? >> we'll see. they sure will. i'll continue to speak out. >> i'm looking for some insight here. i'm a reporter. i'm trying to find out what you know and what you don't know. when you walk around the floor. you walk past the republican cloak room. you get on the subway in the capital building. do they come up to you and say your number is up? >> i hear that all the time. i get dirty looks from the republicans all the time. i can't decide on my vote. i can't decide on health care, energy independence, on jobs, on the economy. base pond dirty looks from people who throw hissy fits all the time and decide we're supposed to decide american policy on that basis and that's what they do time after time. this feigned indignation time after time. >> you know why they don't believe in that themselves believe it is about 3,000 or 4,000. they don't buy this thing of lucy and way back four or five million years. they don't buy all that. so calling them neanderthals
doesn't hurt them. >> i said knuckle dragging 93 earned athals. and one came up to me on the floor. he said i don't like you talking about me that way. and i said i wasn't talking about you. and he said i think you were talking about me. he was trying to prove to me that he was a knuckle dragging neanderthal. i wasn't talking but. look at your knuckles. no callouss. >> let's talk about real people. my thinking is you want to make health insurance accessible, affordable. everybody has to chip in the way they can. nobody is getting a free ride here. talk about why it matters to you. >> why it matters to america i was so sick when i was growing up. i had to go to the child four times a week for treatment. when i was growing up, my parents had union benefits. both belonged to a union themselves both got union benefits. and twice when i was 7 and 17, they went out on strike and i had, i wondered whether i would survive. whether our health benefits would remain in place and whether i would be able to
continue my treatment. and it is a hard thing. it is a hard thing when you're a child to think about whether you're going to live or whether you're going to die. and i don't want to see anyone in america go through that. i was so happy to vote in favor of health insurance for children in my first week in congress. 4 million children all across the country didn't have to worry about that anymore. why should the sins of the parents descend on the children? why should children ever have to worry about that? 10,000 right here in orlando alone. >> you sound like a liberal. >> progressive. >> pop list. don't hide from that word. liberal is a good word. you have to make it sound good. you have to make it -- a liberal. i believe in opportunity for everybody. i believe in freedom for everybody. i believe in liberty for everybody. i'm an american. of course i'm a liberal. it will be more fun. this progressive sounds like you're hiding from being from
who you are. the conservatives call themselves right wingers and love it. you're on the right track. thanks for getting around to doing our show. you've done every other show in the world, by the way. yeah, yeah. right. you're really scared of me. if you're not scared of the republican, you're not scared of me. thank you, buddy. if i can call you buddy. i don't know you. but alan grayson, thanks for coming on "hardball." up next, the target of extortion. david letterman was forced -- he wasn't forced. well, yes, he was forced. forced to admit. forced to have sex with them? no. a guy using it as his monologue this incredible confession. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. if we never had to get well soon, would we simply stay well always? there's a place to find out. at walgreens, we're redefining what it means to be well... with products and advice you can count on every day.
in every area of your life. so join us, and stay well soon. walgreens. there's a way to stay well. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 when my broker said, "i make money when you make money," tdd# 1-800-345-2550 he neglected to mention tdd# 1-800-345-2550 he also makes money when i lose money, tdd# 1-800-345-2550 withdraw money or do nothing with my money. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 tdd# 1-800-345-2550 coming up, john ensign in trouble. he got a gig for his exlover's husband. did he violate ethics laws setting up this little triangle?
here's a story we didn't think we would be covering yesterday. last night on his show, david letterman made an unusual turn, describing an extortion racket against him. a blackmail plot that hit him for some relationships he had with some staffers. let's take a look. >> i have had sex with women who work for me on this show. now, my response to that is, yes, i have. i have had sex with women who worked on the show. and would it be embarrassing if it were made public? perhaps it would. perhaps it would. especially for the women. but what you don't want is a guy saying, i know you had sex with women. so i would lake $2 million.
or i'm going to make trouble for you. >> joining us, jeff, thank you for joining us. this is a strange story. especially for us at nbc that have been covering it. we're talking about the competition but we have to. it is a news story. what do you make of this? did he just pull one of the great public relations moves in history? coming out first with a story. blowing the story in a way that would normally be considered embarrassing but turning the tables on not just the blackmailer but the bad pr that could be coming his way will. >> you know how it works. first one out. you tend to believe the person who come out with the story first. why else would you come out with the story unless you were telling the truth? that's what the pr experts will tell you. and he probably felt luke he was backed into a corner enough where this was going to get out. what would happen, chris? you would see the new york post photographers chasing him down every single day, trying to get a comment from him and he would look guilty when that happens. now he is out. he spent ten minutes on the show last night. he even laughed about it a
little bit saying he was scared. he played the role of the victim. that is the way this news cycle has been going right now. look at the headlines. foerksing on the extortion. not about the sexual relationships he's had. >> yeah, i think so. it seem to me, this fellow is not bishop sheen, either. his job description isn't morality. it is late night television. how many divorces did johnny carson have? he talk about the night out the night before. it was part of the schtick. is this guy able to subsume a serious embarrassment, multiple relationships with staffers, as a pr plus? >> so far. i mean, he has done a masterful job of turning it into a bit of comedy that had everybody in the audience ready to hug him. the facts are, he was unmarried. yes, he was in a long term relationship. but so far, we have not heard that any of the interoffice
relationships weren't consensual. i mean, that's what we'll have to see. whether there is any sex harassment charges that bubble up. but you look at the way he handled this, versus the way his notorious foe bill o'reilly handled it. sex years ago. and o'reilly's statement came off like nixon's checker speech. his lip was sweating. so i think dave was definitely taking this horny bull by the horns. >> he was released within the past couple of hours. robert halderman, the cbs news producer. he is out. he is walking the streets right now. >> well, let's not exonerate him yet. let's go to the crime here. it has all the look, without judging the case as a juror, jeff, you first, of blackmail. a $2 million demand. a check was passed over, a bogus check. it was bounced immediately. the guy went through the act. i know what the commission of a crime. is you go through the whole
process. they set him up to complete the action but clearly the intent was there. to blackmail, it seems to me. it was extortion, it was big money, and this guy was, a grand jury involved here. where does it stand now? >> he has been indicted and the manhattan prosecutor, the d.a. robert morenthal, he has been indicted on one down of attempted grand larceny for that $2 million extortion plot. the alleged plot. he went to be arraigned today. the judge set bond at $200,000 and within the past couple hours, he bonded out. those are the pictures you were showing from the chopper surrounded by the media frenzy of him getting out right now. so he has been suspended by cbs. remember, david letterman own his own company. worldwide pants. and as the ceo of that company, david letterman is not a cbs employ yeefl he works for worldwide pants themselves
produce the david letterman show for cbs. so the staffers work for him. not necessarily for cbs. halderman, the alleged extortionist, he works for cbs. >> so what does that distinction mean to you legally? >> it mean and i've spoken with several people about this today, depending on what kind of policy, what kind of sexual harassment policy there is at worldwide pants versus cbs, cbs will handle halderman the way they want to handle him. david letterman, even if it was consensual, it is still a boss having sex with employees. >> we'll have to see. the new york department of labor may get involved. let me to go george on this. do the media politics, this will help his ratings in the short run, obviously. this is a cause for, this is going past, rubber martinek a traffic accident at least for a while here. >> oh, yeah. there is curiosity about him. it people will be switching to other channels to see if leno or
any, jimmy kimmel are making jokes about letterman but though will come up inevitably. >> inevitably, i think leno will have something fine to say. he's been having fun with the talks about nbc maybe being for sale. leno talks about anything. i was on him last night. i am a huge leno booster. so i think he will be having some 21 this and all the other shows as well. >> can i jump in here? >> the people from worldwide pants must watch this show. as we were just talking, i got an e-mail. we have a written policy in our employee manual that covers harassment. it is circulated to every employee every year. dave is not in violation of our policy and no one has ever raised a complaint against him. so that can answer part of that. >> you keep your pants on at worldwide pants. what the heck? i wish them. with i wish them well. i like all entertainers generally. anybody that has to go on television and face the music. thank you, jeff, thank you, george of the daily news. you'll have colors soon, right? big color on the front page of
the daily news coming soon. i hope it helps you. we like to see newspapers. next, last night i appeared on the jay leno show and answered his ten in ten questions. there i am. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. (announcer) we understand. you need to save money. all over the country, discover card customers are getting 5% cashback bonus at grocery stores. now, more than ever it pays to discover. over health care reform, aarp has chosen a side-- yours. we're fighting to guarantee that you'll never be denied coverage because of your health or age. to prevent anyone from coming between you and your doctor. and to make sure patients don't take a backseat to insurance companies.
back to "hardball." let's hit "the side show." by now everyone know sarah palin's book is a best seller even before it hits the book stores. as i good looking cover there called "going rogue." there she is looking up at the sky. and sarah palin's campaign manager was asked about her book and her political future. as the big atlantic first draft of history come. here he is. >> obviously, there is a lot of fascination about her out in the country, just looking at the presales of the book.
>> i don't think it is inconceivable that she could be the republican nominee for president of the united states. i do think it is fairly inconceivable that she would be elected president of the united states. >> my honest view is that she would not be a winning candidate for the republican party in 2012. and in fact, were she to be the nominee, we could have a catastrophic election result. >> wow, catastrophic. schmidt said a rarity in the business. he said what he thinks and doesn't do air kisses to the big shots just to cover his butt. as you just saw. next, david letterman dropped a bomb shell last night. i was on leno having fun with the ten questions. here it goes. >> number one, worst job you've ever had. explain. >> i was a singing waiter at father's mustache in summer's point new jersey. >> have you ever seen a ghost?
>> yeah. richard nixon and bill clinton. these guys, you think they're dead and they keep coming back. >> in feesh seconds, recite the declaration of independence, the clock starts now. >> let's see. we hole these truths to be self-evident. that men -- all men are created equal. they're endowed by certain inalienable rights. among them, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. >> very good, very good. give us your best -- >> that's a good one. >> hillary, hillary, you're doing one hell of a job at the state department. >> actually, i'm quite proud of my imitation. you ought to hear my arlen specter. now time for the big number. a troubling one. the labor department reported today, the unemployment rate in this country has risen to 9.8% in accept with employers cutting
263,000 jobs this month. today president obama addressed the job loss numbers. >> today job report is a sobering remind per progress come in fits and starts. we're going to need to grind out this recovery. step by step. >> that's not happy news. our big number. tonight, 15.1 million. 15 million workers out of work. not funny at all. up next, senator ensign's love affair. did he break the law as part of the cover-up? it is getting very messy. you're watching "hardball."
lower today. the dow jones industrials losing 21 points. the s&p 500 down 4.5. the nasdaq finishing about nine points lower. all three indexes about 2% on the week. job growth continues to be the missing link. the employers cut a higher than expected 263,000 jobs in september. that makes 21 consecutive months of losses. the unemployment rate now at 9.8%. the highest it has been in 26 years. a couple factors kept stocks from falling even more than they did today though. one was strength in the financial sector. the other, the continued decline of the dollar. it fell against most major currencies again today. the economists economic it to continue to drop until the fed lifts interest rates. that's it from cnbc. now back to "hardball."
let's get some reporting here. welcome back to "hardball." more fallout to report over nevada senator john ensign's affair with the wife of a former aide, doug hampton. "the new york times" reports that he helped get a job for him that may ban on lobbying. you're not posed to work as a lobbyist for a year. apparently the senator helped him set up for just that. and the ethics committee is investigating him for allegations of improper conduct along those lines. eric broke the story for the "new york times" today. and lisa, thank you for joining us. she is the washington correspondent for the las vegas sun. you're up on the hill. eric is with me. let me go to eric now. what has he done wrong legally? the senator? >> what the fbi will be looking at is whether or not this was in effect, a concerted effort, a could not smearcy even by the senator and by his former aide. >> hush money. >> you could call it that. >> in order to conceal this
affair by getting income into doug hampton's hands, by creating lobbying jobs for him and intervening. >> was he helping this guy out for good will or because he felt the guy could extort something from him? >> that's a good question. i think it might be a little bit of both. when you say good will, they have been best friends for the better part of 20 years. there was certainly the threat of exposure because he is having an affair with doug hampton's wife, their wives were good friends. >> not to get too much into the hanky panky but it is part of the story. how long did the senator ensign have the affair with mrs. hampton and mr. hampton didn't know about it? >> he found out about it pretty soon. we believe it is within a month or two. >> of it starting? >> yes. the problem was that it continued even after senator ensign said he was going to brakt off. >> so in the face of his
staffer, he was having an affair. >> yeah. he was confront by his colleagues. >> and the guy's wife was living with him? >> yeah. >> he was having an affair with the guy while the guy and the wife were living together. >> yeah. the affair went on for eight months. >> unbelievable. the whole story of the hanky panky into the corrupt potential criminality of covering this up by using your office to get lobbying jobs and then allowing the guy to lobby you, which seem to me, a circle of love that might just be illegal. >> yeah. chris, it has really been interesting because senator ensign really was on the way, i think, to trying to put this whole issue behind him. he made this big tour of nevada this summer during the congressional break. he's been very active on the senate finance committee as they deal with health care. and we were just starting to write stories that didn't have the words in it. senator ensign, who earlier this year disclosed an affair. we were just sort of moving on from that. >> you were almost dropping the
boilerplate. >> and then i think the first story we wrote was last weekend. and then this emerges with much more serious allegations than what we had seen earlier. i was talking to one ethics expert who said it really confirms a lot of what, if true, a lot of allegations that they had been concerned that earlier. but in a more serious nature because of the one-year lobby ban. so we'll have to see where this goes for him. >> the old journalism has been sex plus. there has to be something besides just hanky panky. there has to be a staffer involved, somebody that works with you, a workplace issue, perhaps lobbying going on. that violates the public trustful to get to the heart of the potential criminality. if you get a job for somebody who is a lobbyist, you are certainly breaking the ethics laws and maybe filing a false claim. going further forecast you then allow the guy, in this case, a
male, to come in as a longyist. somebody has an interest in your office and thin let them lobby for that person, you are giving away your service as senator for pay. >> well, it's what the justice department in past cases has call the denial of honest services. the idea that your constituency isn't the people in your state but someone you have a financial relationship with. >> this may be the case against blaggo in illinois too. let me first read to you the senator's statement. in all fairness to hill. i am confident we fully complied with the relevant laws and rule governing current and past employees. i have worked on these nevada issues with these nevada company for years, long before doug hampton left my office. the cover story there, true or not, lisa, is that he allowed himself to be lobbied by these guys long before he got this guy a job working for them. >> right. and i think someone else told me today, has the real tangled mess that really would sort of need a
lot of explaining to sort out. and eric mentioned the services fraud issue. that certainly is one thing that we've heard about. and then another criminal defense lawyer told me today, the one-year lobby ban. it is sitting right there. if a prosecutor wanted to go the easy route. that would be an easy route to go if it is extra, you know. >> let's take a look. this is doug hampton. he said he and the senator ensign chose to ignore the lobbying ban. you can't lobby your old boss for a year. he said the only way the clients could get what john was essentially promising they will, which was access, was if i still had a way to work with his office and john knew that. how did that work? >> well, there became an issue of concern within ensign's office from the start after ensign left the employment. and the chief of staff went to him and that, we may have a problem here in effect. and according to both doug hampton and the chief of staff,
ensign's directions were to have the chief of staff work directly with ensign. i'm sorry. work directly with doug hampton. >> what do you mean? >> it's an odd way of dealing with the problem. doug hampton saw that. >> let him lobby as a senator. >> that's what investigators will have to look at. doug hampton's interpretation was that this was the go-to guy. >> anybody who knows a bit about the hill knows to lobby the chief of staff is to lobby the senator. there's no way to say you're skirting the law. you are violating it. you figure he is a confidential relationship with you and he won't tell the prosecutors. >> and we published all sorts of interesting e-mail between doug hampton and the senator where doug hampton is getting increasingly restless about this odd relationship they had and saying you promised me clients. you promised three clients. i said i would leave your office to save your career. now i'm looking at financial ruin. you haven't lived up to your end of the bargain. it is the relationship between
these two guys. >> why are people so unhirable? now, this guy was kuk olded by his boss. he has reason to be worried about it. why doesn't he go away and get a really job in a real part of american enterprise? why does he have to be a barnicle on this guy's butt? explain. >> why doesn't he go away? >> we asked him that very question. his feeling was that he had put a lot of his time and life into john's career. he had moved from southern california at john ensign's qux he had joined his staff. he had hitched his wagon to him. and that john ensign owed him a debt of obligation. he was giving up a career in the senate because his wife was having an affair with the senator. >> why didn't he go work for another senator? >> he felt that john ensign owed him rest at this to do in effect, and may even consider -- >> so his moral way of looking
at it thrg guy had a relationship, a sexual relationship with my wife. therefore he owes me and he will pay me out of the public till. >> i don't know if he would look at it quite that way but certainly, that's how this all ended up. >> this goes back -- let me tell you, this goes back to the sense that people get elected to office, some of them, look at public office as an opportunity to take. that they have possessions there, assets sitting in the office and they want to sell them. or use them. thank you for this story. it is not pretty but it does help people decide had a to vote for. thank you. thank you from the las vegas sun. i love las vegas. blal it on rio. speaking of an exciting city. chicago fail in the attempt to host the 2016 olympics. there go peter singing, i go to rio which is the real problem for shirk. there's the music. do you want to visit? get on an airplane. it is a long flight kofl this be a big setback for president
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chicago. >> what a friday. time for the politics fix. joining me, heavyweight moderator of "meet the press" and atlanta media political director. let's look at the real trash talk. i think this will be part of the weekend stories. here's rush limbaugh doing his thing. >> the world has rejected obama. chicago, the least number of votes. first elimination in the round of voting for the olympics in 2016. barack obama. barack obama has been running around the world for nine months, telling everybody how much our country sucks. why would anybody award the olympics to such a crappy place? as the united states of america. >> how do people -- whatever you think of rush, he never said america sucks.
this guy is the best reputation builder. it is not even a partisan statement. no one has made america more popular in the world than the election the people did of barack obama. >> the argument is illogical. this president going around saying the united states has erred in all these different ways would be very well received in the international olympic committee which feels that way. and by the way, doesn't like the u.s. does not like the united states olympic committee. was burn over the bribery scandal. said at the time, we don't want to come back for about 20 years. >> why did he take the risk? why did he stick his neck out and to go copenhagen? was it the home town booster? >> chicago. he had a lot of pressure. brazil was going to the mat with their leader getting there as well. if this was the result and he hadn't tried, we would be talking about that. >> yes. i agree with that. >> do you remember the huge uproar on talk radio and cable tv and the outrage among
conservatives and liberals alike when new york city lost the summer olympics in july 2005 under george w. bush? do you remember that? it didn't happen. because we are now in an era where serving chewed over for at least 12 hours, which is probably the lifetime of it. >> who tried to sell the russian federation for this. isn't at this time norm that the head of government goes out and makes the pitch. as recently as 2005, president bush did a video presentation. hillary clinton to give the star powerful it has become more common. you do kind of question the staff work. i guess you have to. would you put the president on the plane unless you had a strong indication that you were at least going to be in the finals? >> is this going to be like jimmy carter losing the marine marathon? a metaphor for failure? do you remember that? >> i think it is combined with
other things on. a friday when towing europe and he loses the games and he has to come home and deal with the fact that he has unemployment up. it is a huge problem. so all that narrative -- >> guys like rush pay a price for really talking down the hopes of america. why would they cheer? cheering the fact that we've lost the olympics? is that popular among the red blooded guys that watch the show? don't they root for nerk? >> one of my colleagues in the conservative group that has been active in opposing health care. and cheers erupted in the room when it was announce that had the u.s. lost. it was seen as a blow to obama. that is kind of the combative nature of the politics we're in. this will be seen as a symbol of failure if obama is seen as a failure. but it is not going to decide whether or not he is seen as a failure. what david talked about is more important. if the events of the next year of unemployment, the events on health care, climate change, et cetera, is seen as a fail urg people will look at this.
if he, if the economy improves and he gets the legislative it is done, we will be talking about this. >> isn't it common expense the third world which has a lot of votes, africa has a lot of votes. we keep giving these events to the north. even sydney is white guys in australia. they came from england and ireland. isn't it time for the south, the southern hemisphere to have a shot at one of these things? >> there of, in terms of the revenue that the u.s. gets, usc gets from, you know, from the games, from the tv portion of it, that it just seems there was an imbalance. mitt rockny made the point that this was a no brainer, obama should have done it. he was disappointed. >> he was for him going over there? >> absolutely. said he did the right thing. >> the irony is, david probably experienced this in l.a. in 1986. if chicago would have won, half their city would have visited their sister in wisconsin that week. it's a mixed blessing in the
modern area with all the security. when new york city was bidding it was a controversial idea spending all the money they wanted to spend at that time on a new stadium and other things. i think chicago is different for the reasons we talked about. it's a city -- >> unusual night for me. 300 points here. >> sports for a second. prep your brain for the big question when we come back from this break. three or four minutes. is there a battle within the republican party, started with lindsey graham's comments, steve schmidt's comments, your organization, about the first draft of history. where the brain people, people who are saying, who want to win the white house back as soon as next time have decided it's enough. it's enough with the birthers, enough with the palins, it's enough with the people in the fringe. if you want to rule this country, get to the center. we'll be right back to ask the big question. has the center right gone to war with the right? back with david gregory and ron
and ron brownstein. back to my point, with the "politics fix." less talking. is there something going on? you first, ron. in the republican party where this craziness, we play the game here building up rush, building up glenn beck, sarah palin every night in "the sideshow." are they saying enough sideshow, we are have to get to the main event and win this thing next time. >> there is a relationship between the left and right. any fight -- >> center left? >> yeah. fights, you win if you're fighting, regardless of who lands the most blows. if you're wondering about winning elections this is a different calculous. in 2010, the electorate is going to be older, whiter, more conservative. based mobilization strategy could be effective for republicans. >> go right or go center? >> no. for 2010, probably be pretty tough and pretty focused on mobilizing the base. what people like lindsey graham are focusing on, when you get back to 2012, likely the nonwhite, will be close to 30%. >> young people? hispanic people will show up and vote? >> show up and big vote. the track they're on now could
produce a good outcome for 2010 without solving fundamental dwem graphic challenges for 2010. people like lindsey graham are thinking about. >> are they afraid what happened in houston, '92, pat, our colleague, pat, take back the cities block by block and the stuff about cross dressing. that was waived as an example of a party going too far. >> yeah. i think ron is right. they're not afraid objeabout it the midterm when they think about 2012. the upwardly mobile voter who has become a swing voter and voted for obama in the suburbs now, those are -- >> virginia voters. >> those are now voters up for grabs for a democrat or a republican. one of the things the republicans, for all -- you talk lindsey graham for john mccain they're going to stay on building this blueprint against barack obama on the economy, deficit, basically the overall direction of the country. that's what they'll try to build on. >> those are bricks, by the way.
always useful because we'll have a big debt. know one thing for a fact, we'll have a big debt in four years. >> sharpen david's point, those voters he's talking about are not big-government voters. they were clinton voters. centrist on the economy. obama's agenda is cross pressuring them and putting them back into play. they will be tough for a republican like palin to bring is, as opposed to a different kind of appeal. obama put them back in play for republicans if republicans can find a way to meet them. >> palin hurt the party in south florida, southeastern pennsylvania, all around the big cities, suburbs. are they afraid of that? >> absolutely. it's a basic threshold qualifications test for an independent voter. >> she's a ka taffy. >> john mccain doesn't endorse her either. he's not prepared to endorse her. we're in a fight whether the government is workinth
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