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tv   Politics Nation  MSNBC  October 4, 2011 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT

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their nominee will have blown it before they get up the next day. the only person they have now is a candidate who has proven shaky, the other as solid as a rock and many afraid as exciting as one. can't wait to get to tampa, can you. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "politics nation" with al sharpton starts right now. >> hey, republicans, looks like you've been stood up. >> now is not my time. >> okay, chris christie. not your time. so it's up to these guys? the sinking as fast as a racist rock cowboy, governor flip-flop and mr. 9-9-9. >> i take every opportunity to talk about my 9-9-9 plan. >> whatever you say, mr. cain, but can you please add some pep rone so thto to that plan.
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meet the new gop field, same as the old gop feel. republican strategist rollins and michael steele on that and we' -- >> nobody ever gets what they want. >> you heard that right, especially with your do-nothing congress. >> i hope they won't reject the job act because of the word obama in the title. >> president obama fighting for his jobs bill. we'll hear live from congressman barney frank on how to fight the party of no. >> and the wall street protests are growing, and the biggest march is planned for tomorrow. is this the wake-up call for fairness we've been waiting to hear? hold on tight. "politics nation" starts right now.
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>> welcome to "politics nation." i'll al sharpton. tonight's lead, republicans get jilted. after weeks of speculation, new jersey governor chris christie said today he's not running for president, and gop voters better find somebody else. >> now is not my time. i have a commitment to new jersey that i simply will not abandon. so, new jersey, whether you like it or not, you're stuck with me. the deciding factor was it did not feel right to me, in my gut, to leave now when the job here is not finished. >> christie also made it clear he's not throwing his support to any of the current candidates any time soon. >> i'm not prepared to make any
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endorsement today. you know, as i've said before, i'm not a halfway kind of guy. if i feel like there's someone in the field who gives us the best chance to defeat the president, i'll endorse that president and i'll work hard for that person. >> today the republicans actually running for president breathed a huge sigh of relief. >> competition is always a good thing, and he would have been a very fine contender, excellent competitor if he were in the race. >> christ yae's announcement comes as "washington post" polls show mitt romney back in first place, with 25%, just about where he's been all year. rick perry has dropped all the way down to 16s, tied with herman cain. the poll also shows there's a huge block of conservatives who do not want romney on the ticket.
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a total of 39% of republicans support someone more conservative than romney, either perry, crain or michele bachmann. not the best news for the new old front-runner willard "mitt" romney. joining me now are two of the leading republican analysts, michael steele, msnbc analyst, and former chairman of the republican national committee, and ed rollins, until recently senior adviser to michele bachmann's campaign and, of course, one-time political director for ronald reagan. let me start with you, ed. with christie out of the race, the dropping like a rock, pun intended of rick perry, what does this mean? does romney have this locked, and if so, how does he get the conservatives to go along with him? >> well, we've got three months before anybody gets to vote so the bottom line here is there's a long, hard bat. it's not about national polls, it's about iowa, south carolina,
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new hampshire, virginia. and -- and other places across the country, not virginia, nevada, and at the end of the day, florida has now moved its primary to the end of the month. in january we're going to have a full scale, these guys and gal, have three months to get their campaigns together and basically make their case to the public. >> let me ask you, michael steele. david brooks had this to say in the "new york times" this morning, and i think it's something it's interesting. he says "mitt romney doesn't fit the mold of what many republicans want in a presidential candidate. they want a bold, blunt, radical outsider who are take on the establishment, speak truth to power and offend the liberal news media. they don't want organization man. they want braveheart." is that true, and if so, then where are they going to get it from? >> well, that may be true for some. let me just say hello to my buddy ed rollins. good to see him. >> how are you? >> good, buddy. i think, rev, that's true for
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some folks, no doubt about it, and i know ed has had a chance to meet and talk with a lot of those folks, but as he just noted, this is a slog. this is a fight all the way through the next three months before the first vote takes place. chris christie was pushed more by the money interests of the party as well as the media. there wasn't an overwhelming groundswell, grass roots push for christie to get in the race. there's been a measured response by the candidates for good reason because they have the time to vet these guys and see what they are about. i think you'll see the field tighten a little bit more. i think you're going to see these guys focus, and gal, focus their messages a little bit more so now it gets interesting because all the speculation should be over, reverend, and we can focus on the folks who are in this race and in this hunt till the finish and see how it turns out. >> ed, no one has been able to make the case, it seems, for longer than a week or two that
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they are the great outside radical fighting the establishment. but yet the polls show that most republicans, according to the polls, still don't want romney. is the problem that romney is just not catching fire with the majority of republicans, even though you can't get that one anti-romney conservative republican candidate? >> one of the advantages of having done this for four decades is i've kind of seen it all before, and the bottom line here is, you know, mike huckabee was about 2% in the poll four years ago. he won iowa. john mccain was dead and gone at this point in time. he came back and became a nominee. bob dole obviously had -- had rough times in the course of his campaign, and even ronald reagan had rough times back in 1980 when he lost the iowa straw poll to george bush, so this is -- this is about retail, and we have some very fine retail politicians. rick perry has never been defeated in 25 years in texas,
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second largest state in the country. romney obviously won in massachusetts. michele bachmann has a great ability to connect with voters out there. they may not be moving polls but at this point in time it comes down to connecting with voters. that's why you have iowa, new hampshire, south carolina as opposed to just tv stations. >> well, michael steele, you said ed was your good friend, so interpret for me what i just heard. is he saying that there's still hope for rick perry and that he should just hold on, things can still turn around and even implied that there's still a pulse on michele bachmann's presidential campaign? >> reverend, i love you, man. you're awesome. you know, there's a pulse on everybody, and the pulse is beating throughout the party. folks are paying attention, and they are deciding, right now, how they want to move forward, the campaigns are. this thing is going to tighten up, and i think ed was very clear about this. this is a long race here. this is not something that's going to get over and done with
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just because someone is in or someone is out. yes. perry has a chance. bachmann has a chance. you've seen it. you've watched mr. cain go from 3% to 16%. you've watched someone like santorum go from 2% to 7%. there's movement throughout the -- the team. >> what made perry the big guy, ed, let's be honest? he came in and knocked romney from being number one in the polls, but, look, look at the new poll. he dropped 11 points. you can't use polls to make yourself the main guy and then ignore the polls when you start falling. >> at the end of the day, the polls are a count of the voters. per was governor of the second largest state in the country, governor for ten years. the biggest republican state. any poll you take, you say 400 sample, you get 40 from texas, so obviously he showed well in polls. people had great anticipation when he got into the race. he is not a great debater. he obviously proved that in the
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first couple of debates here but he is a good retail politician. i'm not arguing either one will win but i'm arguing you've got good candidates. you've got romney and perry, both who have resources, great staffs and then you have the outsiders, the second tier, which are people like michele and herman cain and others and always have gingrich who basically is a great void of new ideas. >> let me ask you. you are a strategist and were the political director of ronald reagan. if you were advising perry, what would you tell him to do, and if you were advising romney, what would you tell him to do the way it is now? >> immigration is the big issue that governor perry has got to talk in terms of how he put troops on the border or rangers on the border and he basically is -- he got all tangled up on immigration, and i think that drove a lot of the tea party vote away from him and back to mr. cain. in the case of mr. romney, run your own race. whatever it is, go out there and connect to voters, talk about who you are and talk about the differences between you and the president and obviously do it in a respectful way and not a
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disrespectful way and voters will listen to him at this point in time because they want change. >> well, michael steele, i got ed rollins give some free advise to both of the candidates that are -- one of them, anyway, is leading the pack, the other tied for second. >> right. >> but when we look at the money trail, we're told that rick perry may file more money than romney, both have a lot of resources, but we're told that rick perry may file around $15 million, mitt romney $11 million to 13 million so there is a question of do they have enough money to hang in there a little while and hopes santa claus brings them something. >> well, santa claus will bring them both something because they are good at connecting, not only with the major dollar donor, but also with the small dollar dono and i think you're going to see them being able to hold their numbers, if you will, throughout the campaign, but it's also
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important to note as well, rev, that the likes of a michele bachmann and a herman cain and newt gingrich will also continue to raise money and that, of course, is going to make this race so much more dynamic. it really will begin to settle after that first ballot is cast in iowa and as we move into new hampshire you'll begin to see this thing tighten and those folks winnow out. by the end of the month this will be narrowed down a lot more than what it is right now. but between now and then you've got a good race on your hand. >> you guys are really a breath of fresh air, because i always thought democrats like me were dreamers and republicans were realists. ed rollins is sitting there telling me there's still hope for michele bachmann. you're telling me that these guys are going to get something from santa claus. i want to take both of you to see a bridge in brooklyn that i want to work out a deal with you so you can buy at a price i'll arrange. we'll talk about it after the show. >> if you sell it to us, we'll name it after you. >> create a few jobs. >> i'll write it in the contract. michael steele, ed rollins,
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thank you so much for your time tonight. >> all right, al. >> coming back, rick perry is still not talking about his hunting camp's racist name, but we are hearing about his record on race, and it's not good. plus, wall street protests. why the same banks we bailed out are sitting on piles of cash. and president obama on the road in texas and naming names. >> i'd like mr. cantor to come down here to dallas and explain what exactly in this jobs bill does he not believe in? what exactly -- what exactly is he opposed to? more on the president's big day ahead. you're watching "politics nation" on msnbc. [ junior ] i played professional basketball for 12 years.
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rick perry's record on race is not good. we'll have the details next. [ slap! slap! slap! ] [ male announcer ] your favorite foods fighting you? fight back fast with tums. calcium rich tums goes to work in seconds. nothing works faster. ♪ tum tum tum tum tums with new extra-strength bayer advanced aspirin. it has microparticles, enters the bloodstream faster and rushes relief to the site of pain. it's clinically proven to relieve pain twice as fast. new bayer advanced aspirin. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first. helping generations through tough times. good times. never taking a bailout. there when you need them. helping millions of americans over the centuries. the strength of a global financial leader. the heart of a one-to-one relationship. together for your future. ♪
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it's been three days since the "washington post" revealed a hunting camp rick perry leased in texas had the "n" word in its title and still we haven't heard from the governor, but the new reports show a disturbing pattern of behavior on race issues. the associated press reports perry was a prominent opponent of the naacp's efforts to have confederate flags removed from statehouses and government
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buildings across the south in 2000. in a letter to sons of confederate veterans perry wrote, quote, i oppose efforts to remove confederate monuments, plaques and memorials from public property. i also believe that communities should have the right to decide whether statues or other memorials are appropriate for their communities. and "the huffington post" reports, the governor has largely ignored allegations of racism on the part of at least one subordinate and on one occasion was accused of racial insensitivity himself. in 1991, as texas agricultural commissioner, perry supported his assistant commissioner after he was accused of saying this in a meeting, quote, we already have one "n" word. we don't need another. perry called the accusation vial
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and offensive in spite of sworn statements from the accusers and another witness. the aide was eventually forced to resign over the scandal. so questions are mounting. where are you, mr. perry? i'm waiting. joining me now to help answer that question who did show up is matt glaser, executive director of progress texas, a group that has followed perry's past and jonathan capehart, editorial writer for the "washington post" and msnbc contributor. gentlemen, thank you for your time tonight. >> hi, rev. great being here. >> let me start with you, jonathan. three days, no perry. we hear some spinning, if you want to call it that from some of his campaign aides. he didn't come forth. he didn't explain anything. he hasn't really said anything about this. does that speak volumes? >> well, it speaks a little bit, but to be fair to the governor, he did send a statement to the
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"washington post" saying that the word was -- i believe he said either offensive or insensitive. i think it was offensive. he talked about how, you know, efforts were made to, you know, paint over the word which was painted over a rock. i think the bigger issue though is it's one thing to talk about this through a statement and the day the story comes out and then have your spokesperson push back against the criticism of the governor through other statements. i think this issue, race issue with the governor being a governor of a southern state and a white southern governor. he is going to have to come out and talk definitively and forthrightly about race, in the same way that this was an imperative for haley barbour, governor of mississippi. remember, he was the big republican hope way back when when he was trying to decide whether to run for the presidency, and he decided not, to an one of the reasons, it's rumored to be why he did not run, decided not to run, was
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because he did not -- he didn't think he could do a credible job of talking about race that would allow him to go forward to not only win the nomination but to also win the general election. >> well, let me pick up on that with you, matt. the fact of the matter is that this governor had written a letter in 2000 defending local communities that wanted to keep the confederate symbol on public buildings. how do you run for president of the united states for all people defending that position? >> i don't think it's possible, and if you look at what we've been doing, over 30,000 people from across the state of texas don't support that and being put on state license plates, something being considered by the texas department of motor vehicles. >> wait a minute. say that again, slow, because somebody may not have heard that. the texas -- say that again?
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texas motor vehicle are considering what? >> they are considering putting the confederate flag on state license plates. >> this is now. >> right now. up for consideration. it was tied 4-4. rick perry just appointed the ninth member to the board. that member has been called by our members, by other organizations, by press, and it continues to be silent on the issue. jerry patterson, general land commissioner here in texas who is looking at being lieutenant governor here in texas, has sold the san antonio news board, editorial board, that he doesn't know if the texas dmv is being able to get this controversial image on state license plates and has advocated and actually suggested that it should go to the courts for judges to go ahead and legislate from the bench. that is where we are in texas right now. >> mr. capehart, let me say this to you. mr. perry, the present governor of texas, right now running for
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governor, in his own state, debating whether to put this license plate that has the sons of confederate veterans with the confederate flag on the license plates of people in texas while he offers himself to this country as the president of the united states. now, we can argue back and forth about did they paint over a rock that should never have painted in the first place? >> right. >> but what do we talk about? the governor has laryngitis now when they are talking about putting the confederate flag on license plates in the state he's already governor? >> right. he has a problem here, a serious problem. now, it might not be a problem for him in texas, and if he had decided not to run for president, we wouldn't even be talking about this on a national level, but he has put himself forth -- forward to be considered to be the republican presidential nominee -- republican nominee for president, and if you're going to run for president, you have to convince 50.1% of the
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american people that they should entrust you with the presidency. you're not going to win the election with only white voters and particularly only white voters who think it's perfectly fine to have a license plate with the stars and bars on it. he hasn't -- governor perry has a problem. he's going to have to address it. as you call, it laryngitis, he better hope that it clears up, and he clears it up before the next republican debate because guaranteed this issue is going to come up. >> well, matt and jonathan, thank both of you for your time tonig tonight. >> thanks, rev. >> let me say this. this is not, as some say, a regional thing because we did have a president that came from texas. his name was lyndon johnson. he signed the voting rights act. he signed the civil rights act. he stood before congress and said we shall overcome. he was from texas, too, but it looked like he brought a little more courage and moral backbone from texas to the nation. read about lyndon johnson,
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governor perry, on your way to showing up because i'm still waiting. ahead, occupy wall street protests are growing. and for good reason. the people must be heard on the unfairness from wall street. stay with us. i'm robert shapiro. over a million people have discovered how easy it is to use legalzoom for important legal documents. so start your business, protect your family, launch your dreams. at we put the law on your side.
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republicans claim to hate unnecessary government spending, so why are they shelling out
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more money to defend discrimination? earlier this year house speaker john boehner condemned president obama's decision to stop defending the defense of marriage act in court. the law known as doma bans same-sex marriage. >> if the president won't lead, the president won't defend doma, then you'll see the house of representatives defend our actions in passing a bill that frankly passed overwhelmingly. >> in april boehner appointed a solicitor general under president bush to defend doma on behalf of congress, and now clement and his firm are getting a whole lot more taxpayer money. house republicans have approved spending another $1 million on doma's defense, up from $500,000 they had already set aside. problem is most americans oppose the law republicans are fighting to uphold.
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a recent poll showed 53% of americans support gay marriage, but while republicans increase spending to defend an unpopular law, they want to cut programs that actually help people. in the last week alone, house republicans have proposed slashing funding for job training, heating subsidies for the poor and family planning programs, so gop lawmakers say we can't afford to help poor people stay warm, but there's plenty of money for lawyers to defend discriminatory laws. did the republicans think we wouldn't notice their real priorities? nice try, guys, but we gotcha. os are local volunteers... these are our neighbors putting their lives on the line. and when they rely on a battery, there are firefighters everywhere who trust duracell. and now you can join with duracell to help. just buy specially-marked packs & duracell will make
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delivering mail, medicine and packages. yet they're closing thousands of offices, slashing service, and want to lay off over 100,000 workers. the postal service is recording financial losses, but not for reasons you might think. the problem ? a burden no other agency or company bears. a 2006 law that drains 5 billion a year from post-office revenue while the postal service is forced to overpay billions more into federal accounts. congress created this problem, and congress can fix it. your core competency is...competency.
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have organized their own protests and more events are planned in other cities. today some unions are pledging to provide food to the protesters and some unions will join in a march tomorrow. these protests highlight what we all know, people are angry, and they should be. last year ceos at the nation's top 500 companies received on average over $11 million in total compensation, and the federal reserve says u.s. companies are sitting on more than $2 trillion in cash. that's money they are not investing and used to go hire new people. they are just sitting on it. people are angry. they are getting less and less every year while millionaires get more and more. they are sick of it, and they are demanding everyone pay their fair share. of course, the gop calls this class warfare, and you know what? it is. >> if asking a millionaire to pay the same tax rate as a
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plummer makes me a class warrior, a warrior for the working class, i will accept that. i will wear that charge as a badge of honor. >> and you know what else? the american people agree with the president. a new cbs poll shows 64% think we should raise taxes on millionaires. 83% of those people are democrats, 65 also are independents, but 40% of those people are republicans, but the gop is worried about class warfare. well, too late. the war is already here, and it doesn't look like it's going away any time soon. joining me now is larry corn, president of the communications workers union of america. their members will be joining protesters tomorrow in a march from city hall to wall street and peter goodman, executive business director of "the huffington post." larry, your members are marching tomorrow. are they also marching with us
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in washington on the jobs march on october 15th? why are you back in the streets, cwa? >> we're back in the streets, as you said, fight for our rights. this is a war on workers, a class war. unfortunately, management has been fighting their own workers for years, sending their jobs out of country, cutting their pay, gutting their benefits, destroying the retirement. there is a class war. there's a war on workers, and our members are saying, whether it's being out here with you a week from saturday as we remember dr. king and how he stood with workers or whether it's tomorrow, and even today and last friday, being with young workers in the park and then marching on verizon, we call it wall street to west street, we're out there because we believe that in addition to doing political work and being out at the polls, we've got to wake up america. we've got to say to working class america, to working americans, you know, we have to
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fight for ourselves. you have the worst income inequality in the history of the country, you have the lowest rights for workers almost in the history of the country and you have skyrocketing profits and skyrocketing wages for the top management. something is wrong, and we can't just do that in a political system that's now controlled by the wealthy, where anything goes. they don't even disclose the money that they put in. we need to do it by being in the streets, by working for fair contracts on the job, and also build the kind of political movement based on 15 million americans standing up for dem >> i building a political movement. peter, one of the things that i've noted about the occupation wall street, and we had one of the organizers last night, is these are not people from one political persuasion or even with the same stated goals, but these are people that seem to be outraged on the inequality that we are seeing across the board in this country. is this in your opinion
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representative of a widespread kind of anger that americans are feeling from different political persuasions? >> yeah. i mean, they call themselves the 99%ers, the 99% of the economy that haven't been getting the growth in the economy when we've had growth, outside of this horrible recession that we've become accustom to. the people may not have a monopoly on the answers, but they understand this economy doesn't benefit for most of the people. for a quarter century we've had an economy where most people can't pay for housing or health care or pay to send their kids to school without going into debt, and that debt has proven unsustainable. meanwhile, most of the profits from corporate growth have flowed to the top, to the people with the corner offices, to the people making the deals on wall street, and there is very widespread anger and a demand for a new kind of economy. you know, it must be said that there's some characterization that this is some sort of a radical movement.
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>> right. >> these people out on the street as if they are asking for something we've never seen before. women's suffrage. that radical, never had that before. the civil rights movement, taking on an entrenched racial establishment in the south. this was radical. opposing the vietnam war, taking on the pentagon, country truly divided. this country is asking for something they already had. >> in a country that's 9.1% unemployed, it's not radical to say we want jobs. i think the radicals are people that lay off teachers and workers and dealing with things you've had to deal with even with our governor christie. i mean, it's amazing when you're sitting on $2 trillion in cash, won't invest in america, and you call people radical because they are saying, hey, we need to be able to afford our health insurance and we don't want you messing with grandma's social security. >> absolutely. the radical idea is that only this country of the industrial democracies doesn't have health care for all. the radical idea is that only in
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this country should retirement mean less and less a percentage of the income you made before you retired. radical is cutting jobs, cutting pay, cutting health care and thinking that you can possibly have an economic rehkocovery an radical, as you said, most of all, cutting our rights on the job, destroying bargaining and believing that there's any chance, except in fairy tale capitalism that the economy will ever revive. we need our rights, we need our standard or living or you can't revive the american economy. >> peter, let me show you something that i'm not the great researcher that you are, but we came up with this clip that was really something to me, the president actually saying with the protesters and what larry andry saying, a president saying that millionaires ought to pay more than ordinary people. look at the president of the united states saying this. it's awesome. >> we're going to close the unproductive tax loopholes that allow some of the truly wealthy
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to avoid paying their fair share. in theory, some of those loopholes were understandable, but in practice they sometimes made it possible for millionaires to pay nothing when a bus driver was paying 10% of his salary and that's crazy. you think the millionaire ought to pay more in taxes than the bus driver or less? >> peter, tell them for me, don't listen to larry corn. don't listen to al sharpton. listen to ronald reagan. >> you know, that's a wonderful clip that you've played, and it reminds us that we've gotten so accustomed to crack pot economic theories and ideas governing our political process and keeping us hostage in this country, that you know, it takes looking back at the reagan years, this supposed champion of small government, fewer taxes, to remind us that it is truly insane that we've gotten to this place where proposing that millionaires pay their fair share of taxes is somehow radical politics, and the only distinguishing characteristic between the united states of america and other modern democracies is that we let rich people not pay taxes.
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>> that's right. >> even ronald reagan said it. larry corn and peter goodman, thanks, and, folks, if you want to learn more about all of this, check out peter's book, "past due," the end of easy money and the renewal of the american economy." peter really wrote it there. ahead, president obama on the road and going right after republicans for playing politics with the jobs bill. >> give me a break. that's why folks are fed up with washington! this isn't about giving me a win. >> what did republican leaders respond with? congressman barney frank is live next. ♪ like so many great pioneers before me, guided only by a dream. i'm embarking on a journey of epic proportion. i will travel, from sea to shining sea, through amber waves of grain, and i won't stop until i've helped every driver in america
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and people. and the planes can seem the same. so, it comes down to the people. because: bad weather, the price of oil those are every airline's reality. and solutions will not come from 500 tons of metal and a paintjob. they'll come from people. delta people. who made us the biggest airline in the world. and then decided that wasn't enough.
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president obama went on the offense today, taking his fight for jobs to texas and blasting eric cantor for denying a vote on the jobs bill. >> yesterday the -- the republican majority leader in congress, eric cantor, said that right now he won't even let this jobs bill have a vote in the house of representatives. i'd like mr. cantor to come down here to dallas and explain what
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exactly is in this jobs bill that de -- that he does not believe in. if he won't do that, at least put this jobs bill up for a vote so members know where exactly this jobs bill stand. >> americans deserve to know who is standing in the way, but back in washington senate republican leader mitch mcconnell was playing games again, trying to force a vote on the jobs bill immediately, not as a stand-alone measure, but tacking it into the china currency legislation. harry reid called it a political stunt. the other leading republicans continue attacking the president's jobs bill. >> if the president would join us in trying to do some things that actually help people, that help create an environment for growth, i think we can all see a way to work together to actually produce a better future.
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>> nobody gets everything they want. i don't get everything i want, and i think the president understands the legislative process. >> really, speaker boehner? isn't that what you said last december? >> i am not going to compromise on my principles nor am i going to compromise the will of the american people. >> okay, mr. speaker, you want to know the real will of the american people? just listen. >> they want congress to do what they were elected to do. they want congress to do their job! do your job, congress. the time for gridlock and games is over. the time for action is now. tell them if you want to create jobs, pass this bill. >> joining me now is congressman barney frank, democrat from massachusetts. he's the top democrat on the house financial services committee. mr. chairman, thanks for joining
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me this evening. >> glad to be here. >> it's been a month since the president offered his jobs bill and still no vote in the house. what are the republicans afraid of? >> they are afraid of revealing the gap between their ideological right wing extremism and the hold that the tea party extremists have on them and the fact that the american people don't agree. you know, if they thought the president's program was unpopular, they would rush to vote on it, but they understand, you know, we're talking about building roads and highways here. we're talking about giving money to local communities so they can rehire police officers, fire fighters and teachers. the republicans understand that's popular. every public indication is that the public understands this important order of things. first, you do the things that will get people back to work. then as we begin to do that, you go after the deficit, but if you just do deficit cutting now, as people who are appointed by
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george bush have said, you'll make things worse rather than better. you would think the american people understand that, but you've got to realize, i'm glad you showed that clip from ronald reagan. ronald reagan was a mainstream conservative who could work within the framework of american politics. you now have a group of very extreme people who don't accept the fact that there is a need for this kind of concerted action, and the republicans are torn between their ideology and reality. >> well, mr. chairman, let me show you, if you look at this poll, the american people have clearly spoken. cut payroll taxes on individuals, 65%, payroll taxes on business, 58%, funding for civil service, 74%, funding for infrastructure, 64%, funding for unemployment, 52%. the american people have spoken. there is outrage bursting at the seams. we're talking, as you say, about rebuilding schools, jobs and
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rebuilding infrastructure, re-hiring firemen and policemen. we're not talking about things that are not essential, yet they are playing games. they are gridlock games in washington. >> no question, and, again, it's this extreme ideology that they have that -- look, here's the problem, al. they are not listening to the american people. they are listening to a small segment of the american people, the people who vote in the republican primary. you see that in the republican presidential race which is a race to get as far right as possible, even people who previously had been known as mainstream conservatives are moving far to the right. and my guess is that's why chris christie decided not to run, that as conservative as he is, he couldn't become the kind of extremist you would have to be. the american people as a whole say put people back to work, hire teachers, put people back to work building highways, let us do some things to clean up the river and let's pay for that, by the way, by taxing the wealthy, and the republicans say no, we can't do that because the people who dominate our
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primaries, the tea party people, will punish us if we do it, so, yes, you have the american people saying one thing, but you have a political party that i hope is in temporary control of the u.s. house that's dominated by a small group. by the way, people have a right to vote in primaries and people don't vote in the primaries have no right to criticize the results of those primaries, that's a fact, the republican primary is responding to the most right wing elements of their party and that's why the american people -- >> how do we break through this and get through this and get something for the american people that really, really need a breakthrough here? >> we keep trying. we keep doing these kind of shows. we hope that there will be people who live in the districts of some of these republicans who were nominated by the tea party and won because of dissatisfaction last year. we'll say to them, you know what, if you want to get re-elected, not enough to keep the tea party happy. you've got to show us that you're going to respond to the economy as a whole.
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what we need is for the american people to reach out and say to the people who represent them, and let me tell you, i've been doing this for a while. people hear from the voters in their districts, they will pay attention and that's what we have to have. so people need to speak out and tell again, particularly these republicans, who are saying no to this and no to that, not going to make millionaires pay taxes, not going to keep cops on the street, that if they are going to keep that up we won't vote for them. that's how we change them >> you say temporarily in charge of the house. does that mean that you think there's a possibility that the democrats can take the house back next year? >> yes. i said i hope that, and i -- i tell you why. i -- i look at what you just showed. there is a huge gap between what the american people understand we need in the economy and what the republicans in the house are doing, and -- and this is not -- it was not a normal year last year. i don't think it will be a normal year next year. i think as people perceive these
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differences, they want us to say let's hire people and put them back to work policing the streets and building highways and cleaning up our -- our parks. they want people who are very wealthy to pay a little bit more tax. we're talking about getting back to the tax levels we had under bill clinton when we had a great economy. one of the things that strikes me, some of the conservatives who came to be such believers in the american economy, think the american economy is this weak frail thing and here's what we're talking about, al. what i would like to say, for every $1,000 you make above $250,000 in taxable income, that's after all your deductions, for every $1,000 you make, i think we should tax you $40, and these people are swooning in fear that if they had to pay $40 out of over $1,000 above $250,000 in taxable income, that this would destroy the economy. it's nonsense and it's been proven to be nonsense. >> i think if the democrats stand for that and hold on to that you probably are right.
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the problem is when you stand in the middle of the road you get hit with traffic going both sides. we've got to make a stand, and i think you're right. mr. chairman, as always, thank you for your time tonight. >> the right wing hates government so much we'll see if they could live with it. that's next. ♪ ♪ ♪ [ female announcer ] something unexpected to the world of multigrain... taste. ♪ delicious pringles multigrain. with a variety of flavors, multigrain pops with pringles.
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when republicans talk about government, they always seem to dpom come back to one conclusion. whatever is wrong is the government's fault. >> our plan is to get government out of the way. >> they need to get government out of the way. >> i also believe that big government is hurting the united states. >> i want to get government out of the way. >> if we want to get america working again, we need washington to get out of the way! >> that's where i think republicans have it wrong. we don't need to get rid of government. we need to make it better.
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let me show you this picture that is making the rounds online. it makes the point. no government. we don't have powerful traffic lights. we don't have sidewalks, roads, phone lines, streetlights. i mean, how would we function every day? traffic signs? power lines. no government, we would just be out there in total anarchy. we need government that works for the people, just like the traffic light, just like the streets provide us our way of transporting to and from where we're going. government can work if government works for everybody. quick saying stop government and say let's make government work for the people, by the people. let us have good government. no government is a disaster, or maybe that's what some of the


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