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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  November 29, 2011 12:00am-1:00am EST

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on sirius xm radio channel 127 monday through friday noon to 3:00 p.m. and you can follow me on twitter @edshow and @wegoted. "the rachel maddow show" starts right now. good evening, rachel. >> good evening, ed. welcome back. i missed you, my friend. >> i put on a few pounds. we slimmed up the camera tonight. the turkey did it to me again. what can i say? >> i'm going to be sucking it in for the entire hour. i know exactly how you feel. thanks, man. >> you bet. thanks to you at home for staying with us the next hour. it's good to be back. the herman cain campaign is in damage control after a local fox station in atlanta aired an exclusive interview with a woman who says she had had an adulterous affair with herman cain for the past 13 years. >> he made it very intriguing. it was fun. it was something that took me away from my sort of humdrum life at the time and it was exciting. >> she says the physical relationship ended about eight
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months ago. right before cain announced he was running for president. but the communication did not. when we asked for corroborating evidence, she pointed us to her cell phone. one name, herman cain. she showed us some of her cell phone bills that included 61 phone calls or text messages to or from this number starting with 678. she says it is herman cain's private cell phone. the calls were made during four different months. calls or texts made as early as 4:26 in the morning and as late as 7:52 at night. the latest were in september of this year. >> we've never worked together, and i can't imagine anyone phoning or texting me for the last 2 1/2 years just because. >> reporter: we texted the number and herman cain called us back. he told us he knew ginger white but said these are more false allegations. he said she had his number because he was trying to help her financially. >> late this afternoon mr. cain's attorney sent that fox news station a statement reading
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in part, "no individual, whether a private citizen, a candidate for public office or a public official, should be questioned about his or her private sexual life. mr. cain has no obligation to discuss these types of accusations publicly with the media and will not do so even if his principled position is viewed unfavorably by members of the media." to be fair, i think the reason this latest allegation against mr. cain is news is not because this allegation is that he's done something illegal or even because it's anybody's business what any two adults do inside or outside the bounds of their own marriage. private life is private life, even for public figures. unless those public figures choose to build their political careers on criticizing other people's private lives and proclaiming the superiority of their own private life. in the case of mr. cain, he has campaigned for office by saying that he will defend the sacred institution of marriage against liberals who want to destroy it. because of that, mr. cain now has a sacred institution glass house problem.
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and although the lawyer's statement said mr. cain would not discuss these allegations as a matter of principle, i'm not sure that mr. cain himself got that memo tonight. >> did you have a 13-year affair with this woman? >> no. i did not. >> did you know her for 13 years? >> yes. but i did not have an affair. okay? and until i see and hear exactly what's going to be -- what the accusations are going to be made, let's move on. but i acknowledge that i knew the woman. i acknowledge that i've known her for about that period of time, but the accusation that i had a 13-year affair with her, no. >> was this an affair? >> no, it was not. >> there was no sex? >> no. >> none? >> no. >> and if this woman says there is, she's lying? is that what you're -- >> wolf, let's see what the story is going to be. i don't want to get into being pinned down on some things until we see what the story is going to be. >> those comments from mr. cain coming after his lawyer said
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that he will not discuss this matter at all. well, there's a political flurry about this new herman cain scandal tonight which this flurry may last into tomorrow, may not. but if it does last, it will mostly be because there isn't really other huge political news pushing this out of the news cycle right now. otherwise i think this would be over fairly quickly. i mean, sex scandal allegation number seven or sex scandal allegation number eight, depending on how you count, doesn't have the same marginal impact as sex scandal allegation one or two or three. and whether it's because of the sex scandals or seeming to not know what libya was or people just getting to know him better as the koch brothers' brother from another mother, as he put it, if you look at the polling in the recent weeks, his presidential hopes appear to be in the rearview mirror. i mean, anything can happen. but if you look at the trend line for herman cain in the polls, he looks like a candidate who has peaked. the new flavor of the month, of course, the new non-mitt romney candidate who is currently on the rise in the republican
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presidential politics is another republican from georgia. it's former house speaker newt gingrich. and in order to understand the way in which newt gingrich is peaking right now in the post-thanksgiving flush, in order to understand that, you have to understand this guy. >> for in america we do not promise that everyone wins, only that everyone gets a chance to try. and you have given me that chance. i took advantage of it as well as i could. i appreciate it. and thank you for it. >> that is pete du pont speaking in 1988 about five seconds after losing really badly in the new hampshire republican presidential primary. pete du pont came in fourth out of five candidates in new hampshire that year and then he promptly dropped out, never to be heard from again. pete du pont was sort of a late '80s version of one of the koch brothers today. he was a zillionaire inheritor of his family's chemical company, a company not called koch industries in his case but called du pont. perhaps you have heard of the
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dupont company. mr. du pont used his family's fortune to run for office and to promote a signature blend of big intrusive government for regular people, government that's sort of all up in your business as an individual human, but government that is almost non-existent for corporations. so mr. du pont ran on a platform, for example, of mandatory drug testing for all students in america. so for the crime of being a student, the government would force you to turn over your urine. credit card companies, though, not only didn't have to hand over their urine, they really didn't have to worry about any corporate taxes either. pete duh dupont is the guy who made delaware the place credit card companies move to to avoid many corporate taxes. pete du pont is still alive and the head of the national center for policy analysis which had a brief cameo on our show last week when it was the conservative think tank behind the air pollution is good for asthma theory floated on the floor of the united states senate by republican senator rand paul of kentucky. he noted that power plant
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emissions have been going down over time but asthma has been going up over time. so, he posited, maybe power plant emissions aren't so bad. maybe they could even be inversely related. that was data he was citing from pete du pont's national center for policy analysis. but back in 1988 pete du pont was running for president and the one thing he got was an endorsement from the largest and most influential newspaper in new hampshire. "the union leader." "the union leader" endorsed pete du pont that year and this weekend the same newspaper endorsed newt gingrich for president. this was their big front page above-the-fold headline yesterday. "for president, newt gingrich." now, it is not shocking that "the union leader" would endorse somebody other than mitt romney despite what you may have heard about this this weekend and today. this newspaper, in fact, really seems to dislike mitt romney. they not only didn't endorse mr. romney the last time he ran for president, they spent the entire
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presidential primary season basically ripping mr. romney to shreds, running editorials like this one every few weeks. "the more mitt romney speaks, the less believable he becomes." ah. so the biggest new hampshire paper not endorsing mitt romney, given how we know they feel about him, that's not a big surprise. the big surprise is why this newspaper's publisher said that newt gingrich got the endorsement instead. listen. >> gingrich is going to have a better time in the general election than mitt romney. i think it's going to be obama's 99% versus the 1% and romney sort of represents the 1%. >> occupy the gop primary! i sort of think congratulations are in order here. i mean, to anybody who has doubted the effectiveness of the occupy wall street movement, doubted what they might accomplish, especially without a manifesto of specific demands, let the record show that appealing to the 99% of americans and not the 1% is now
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the stated rationale for one of the most conservative newspapers in the country making its endorsement for the republican presidential nomination. so if the occupy wall street movement, you know, really were a mirror image of the tea party like the beltway media says it is, then the occupy movement would be affecting just the left edge of democratic politics the same way the tea party affected just the right edge of republican politics. they are not a mirror image of each other. despite what you may have heard. behold the occupy wall street movement apparently having a full spectrum political impact even on republicans. it's not like this conservative newspaper was inclined in a we are the 99% populist direction before this movement. this is the newspaper, after all, that endorsed pete du pont of the du pont du ponts. this is the newspaper that also endorsed steve forbes in 2000. steve forbes of "forbes." in new hampshire the manchester "union leader" has not exactly been looking out for the little guy. they have not been looking out for the populist candidates to
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endorse. but this year the same paper says mitt romney just seems too 1 percenty. so instead they're going with newt gingrich. memo to the "new hampshire union leader." everyone gets that mitt romney seems too 1 percenty for the political climate in america right now arguably. but have you looked into newt gingrich? if you actually looked into newt gingrich, i mean, on paper, on paper it can seem daunting to look into newt gingrich. when you start looking into his financial empire, it can seem sort of complicated, but it's not. it's basically just this. 1425 kay street northwest in washington, d.c. 1425 kay street northwest is the home of gingrich communications. 1425 kay street northwest also the home of gingrich group. gingrich group appears to be known now as the center of gingrich transformations, a for profit health care thing. 1425 kay street northwest the home of gingrich productions. 1425 kay street northwest also the home of gingrich holdings. 1425 kay street northwest also very recently the home of american solutions for winning
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the future, which you will remember for the scammy blast faxes where newt would promise to give you a prestigious award if you sent $5,000 to 1425 k street northwest, washington, d.c., suite 750. you can reach newt gingrich's hispanic outreach news source thing called the americano through gingrich solutions. located at 1425 k street northwest. basically anything related to the myriad means by which the name newt gingrich has been used to separate conservatives from their money, it all basically goes through 1425 k street northwest in washington, d.c. i mean, on paper, it looks like this. right? it looks complicated. this is a map of newt inc. that was put together this weekend by the "washington post." you can see beginning rbi holdings there at top and everything flowing down from that. that's what it looks like on paper. in reality, though, in bricks and mortar land, it's all just right there p it's all that one building. if you happen to find yourself in washington, d.c., at some point walking by that building, check for your wallet.
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the empire of highly interconnected newt-related organizations that raise huge sums of money and then pass that money around among the different newt organizations, thus enabling the half-million-dollar tiffany's charge account lifestyle that republican primary voters were laughing at just a few months earlier this year, that empire has long been thought of as a barrier to any real political future for mr. gingrich. since he left the house of representatives 15 years ago under a cloud of ethics charges, with the house fining him $300,000 for the way he was making money off of political activities, newt gingrich has essentially spent the 15 years since making a lot of money for himself off of political activities, using politics to make himself very, very, very rich. 1% rich. and this rise in the polls does not appear to be changing things for the way mr. gingrich lives or behaves. this time last year, remember it was gingrich productions' 12 days of christmas presents. merry, merry gingrichmas. do all of your christmas shopping at remember?
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this year he's doing it again. today under a url that hopefully notes that it is cyber monday, newt gingrich, who is now the front-runner for the republican nomination for president, newt gingrich inc. suggests that to celebrate merry monday today, you should buy this autographed copy of his newest book "a nation like no other" for just $21.99, that's $6 off the cover price. so yes, it is news. it is probably pretty big news for the country and for our politics that the biggest newspaper in new hampshire, "the new hampshire union leader," is looking for a we are the 99% republican presidential candidate. it is smaller but more amazing news that they think that guy is newt gingrich. joining us now is the author of yesterday's story on newt inc., the "washington post's" national political correspondent, karen tumulty. karen, thank you for joining us tonight. it's nice to have you here. >> thank you. i was just looking at the picture of the building there. think how much he saved on
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commuting. >> he has to commute between suite 350, suite 450, and suite 750. but it sounds like it may all be on the same elevator bank. it is amazing. is it sort of a more typical thing in washington than we understand? are there lots of politicos and former politicos who have interlocking money-raising empires like this? >> absolutely. i think what is different about newt gingrich's plan, it was really an economic resurrection that sort of almost mirrors what we've seen him do politically in the last few months. and i think it was a lot more entrepreneurial perhaps than we've seen from other people, but there is a very well-trod path between capitol hill and lobbying shops and law firms, where there is generally a pretty comfortable afterlife for politicians and top staffers from congress. it's -- you know, again, washington is a pretty cozy place to be if you're a has been.
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>> one of the things that i find most interesting, and sort of endlessly fascinating the more you look into it about mr. gingrich is that he very explicitly and proudly describes himself as not a lobbyist. i think we all understand the revolving door between capitol hill and lobbying shops trying to influence former colleagues through a system you used to be an expert of because you were on capitol hill. he's explicitly not a lobbyist, so part of the way he's raised money is by being a political authority by using things like blast faxes and push polling and direct mail to raise money as if he is a cause. is there anybody else who does that? >> oh, i think, you know, i think there have been a number of politicians who've done that. dick armey, for instance, was also somebody who did these sorts of things. and, you know, there's a sort of technical definition that requires you to actually register as a lobbyist. and that actually requires you to go up to capitol hill and have contact with individual
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members or their offices. this is really not what we're talking about here. these are people who are very much trying to influence policy, influence legislation, but not in the kind of, you know, going up there and asking individual members to do you favors. >> when mr. gingrich did whatever it is he did for freddie mac, he has described it as historian services, which doesn't seem to square with the pay scale, but that is how he describes it. when he has done other consulting, for example, for pharmaceutical companies, with his health care group, is the -- is what is expected by the companies that are hiring him any different than what would be expected by hiring consulting and lobbying shop? obviously he's not setting up individual meetings with members of congress, but isn't he getting the same kind of influence he'd be getting if he was lobbying? >> they are very much, and as
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newt gingrich was explicit with me in my interview with him on this, they are very much expecting the kind of advice that will help them get their agenda, get their causes through washington. and, you know, and there was also the whole for-profit health care think tank that newt gingrich had. he's no longer associated with. the center for health transformation. you take a company like novo nordisk, it's a company that puts together treatments for diabetes. they were paying $200,000 a year for six years to the center for health transformation. what were they getting out of this? a lot of access, a lot of advice from newt gingrich. but he was also lending his name and his celebrity to some of their cause. he was the keynote speaker of their diabetes summit, and his name was on their press releases commending the company for being a leader in fighting diabetes. again, these are all -- i mean, nobody is for diabetes, but these are all causes that whatever the other matters, they
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were good for novo nordisk's bottom line. and you see this over and over again in these types of transactions. >> karen tumulty, national political correspondent at the "washington post." it's nice you have to on the show. thank you very much for joining us tonight. thanks for doing this reporting. >> thanks, rachel. all right. republicans oppose president obama's proposal for extending tax cuts. he's for the tax cuts. they're against the tax cuts. that's next with my guest, bob herbert. please stay with us. [ knock on door ] cool. you found it. wow. nice place. yeah. [ chuckles ] the family thinks i'm out shipping these. smooth move. you used priority mail flat rate boxes. if it fits, it ships for a low, flat rate. paid for postage online and arranged a free pickup. and i'm gonna track them online, too. nice. between those boxes and this place, i'm totally staying sane this year.
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do i smell snickerdoodles? maybe. [ timer dings ] got to go. priority mail flat rate shipping at a simpler way to ship.
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all right. check this out.
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this is on the white house website right now. it's a political tool/warning/calculator that tells you how much it will cost you personally if congress does not extend something called the payroll tax cut. this is an interactive thing. you just click the button, you say whether you file your taxes as a single person or married person. you enter your income in the little box and ta-da! in an example here, we found that a single person making $50,000 a year would have to pay $1,000 more next year if congress does not extend the payroll tax holiday. this obviously is not just a calculator. this is raw politics. notable mostly for the fact that democrats don't usually do raw politics this well. but also democrats are usually not the ones campaigning on taxes. right now, we are in an upside-down, black is white, day is night moment where republicans are about to be the ones fighting for higher taxes and democrats are the ones fighting to keep them low. because apparently republicans do want to raise this one kind of tax.
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even though they desperately want to be seen as the low taxes party. i mean, republicans always want to be seen as the low tax party. but this year in particular they really want to run on taxes specifically and on the economy more broadly. they're not picking foreign policy to run on this year or being tough on crime or some other typical republican trope. it's taxes. that's what they're running on in 2012. the republican half of the sad little failed supercommittee collectively writing an op-ed for the "washington post" in which they blame the committee's failure on the democrats' insistence on raising taxes, which they of course would not do because they are republicans and they hate raising taxes. the closest thing we've seen so far to a national ad from the republicans this election cycle is from one of the karl rove-linked dark money groups. it is on taxes, taxes, taxes, attempting to portray president obama as a tax raiser. but here we are with a specific policy dilemma ahead of us. and republicans seem to be the ones who want to raise the taxes. they want to get rid of a tax
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cut. >> if i may, senator kyl, just to cut this short, are you saying no deal on extending the payroll tax cuts? >> the payroll tax holiday has not stimulated job creation. we don't think that is a good way to do it. >> that was senator jon kyl of arizona. the same jon kyl of the "we didn't make a supercommittee deal because we wouldn't go along with the horrible democrats and their tax raising." only now he's saying this other tax, yeah, let's go ahead and raise that one. so what is different from this one tax compared to the other one jon kyl and his friends complained about in the op-ed? why are they willing to let this one tax go up but not capital gains, dividends, death tax, as well as marginal tax rates, all these other things they complained about? why don't republicans want to protect this other tax cut the way they want to protect those other tax cuts? what makes this one tax so distinctive? why do they want to see it go up? well, it's a payroll tax.
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so take your pick. maybe they want to see this one go up because it's a tax on paychecks. that means it's a tax cut that is not just for rich people. it's for regular people. that's one way it is different from a lot of those tax cuts republicans are sticking up for. alternatively, you could see this as different because this is a tax cut that president obama supports. which of course makes it intrinsically evil, not to mention kenyan. so which of those is the principle behind the republican opposition here? it's still almost a year before the election, and there's still a lot of governing to be done, a lot of policy to be made because the country needs governing and the country needs policy but we are now officially into the time period in which politics and policy are intertwined. so the decision republicans make in congress about how to handle the payroll tax cut, whether they keep it going or whether they work against democrats and raise taxes on everybody earning a paycheck in this country, that decision also reflects on the rest of the party in the time when the manchester "union leader" says they didn't endorse mitt romney and the paper's
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publisher said this by way of explanation. >> i think it's going to be obama's 99% versus the 1% and romney sort of represents the 1%. >> romney representing the 1% seen as a problem for the republican party by that very conservative newspaper publisher. of course, if the republican party is at a place where if the romney is not mitt romney, it looks like it might be the guy with the half-million-dollar revolving account at tiffany's. it's a place where today's big political process story is that the billionaire who said president obama trying to close the tax loophole that lets hedge fund billionaires to be taxed at 15% was like when hitler invaded poland in 1939. today the big political process story of the day was that that guy, the obama is like hitler guy, has decided to throw down for mitt romney. holding a fund-raiser for him next month, thus bringing america the heartwarming tale of investment zillionaires sticking up for private equity fund
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zillionaires as the big republican politics news story of the day. in the race to represent the party that only wants to hike taxes on people who work for a paycheck, if that is what defines the democratic party right now, what defines the republican party right now? and do these guys in congress know how it's going to reflect on the presidential race? joining us now is bob herbert, former columnist for "the new york times." currently a senior dwisistinguid fellow at demos and contributor to mr. herbert, great to have you here. >> great to be here, rachel. this is unbelievable, right? just, one, newt gingrich as representative of the common man. i mean, i think that's great, too. the 99%. but you know, hypocrisy is like the default position of the gop. it's insane. in the first place they're the ones who are always screaming about the deficit, deficit, deficit, but they always want tax cuts. i mean, how do you jibe that? but now, you know, a tax cut for the middle class? excuse me, that's no good. >> the middle class tax cut
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is -- there was actually a divide right down the middle at our staff meeting today. and we were talking about what might reasonably explain this. because jon kyl's explanation, he's perfectly explained both sides of it. he's perfectly explained why republicans are for a payroll tax cut and why they're against it. so he automatically cancels himself out and can't be trusted to give a real answer. so what could be the reason? i mean, the obvious partisan reason is that because president obama supports it they're against it just as a knee-jerk reaction. is it possible they are against it because it would help the middle class? >> yeah. i think that's it. i mean, they are fundamentally the defenders of the rich. no one really wants to talk about it as bluntly as that, although many people actually understand that. so they want tax cuts for the very wealthy. it's why the bush tax cuts were skewed the way they were. the bush tax cuts could have been more fairly apportioned. you could have had bigger tax cuts for the middle class and
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not quite so large for the very wealthy, but that's not the way they skewed it. they are the defenders of the 1%. very often the 1/10 of 1%. >> the best way to help, even if your agenda, though, was to help the .1 of the 1%, you were out there for the pete du ponts of the world and you're out there because you're worried about steve forbes. >> right. >> even if you wanted to do that, i mean, obviously you want to keep tax -- you want to keep taxes very low for not only just for high income but for all the different ways that rich people earn their income. >> right. >> things like deferred interest and all of that stuff that affects the way that hedge funders pay their taxes. but you also want the overall economy to be growing. i mean, when the middle class does better, rich people do better, too, and so is it -- why would they be against a middle class, something that would help them? >> this is the part that's a little difficult for me to understand. i remember doing an interview with president clinton back in the late '90s. and people were getting on his case.
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there was a whole tax issue going. but the very wealthy were being very critical of president clinton. this is late in his presidency. and he said to me, we're in the back of the limousine on the way to the airport in los angeles, and he said to me, almost like musing, you know, not as part of the interview, he says, you know, i made a lot of money for those fellows as well. why are they so hard on me? and the very wealthy did extremely well during the clinton administration. the economy did not do well even before the great recession under george w. bush jr. but they don't seem to get that. they have this short-term thinking, i want as much as i can get now. i don't want to pay taxes. i don't want to think about the economy in more than the short term. it seems somewhat bizarre to me. i mean, one of the things that's really extremely hard to understand is why they don't want to do more about employment. because, you know, everybody's going hurrah, hurrah, there have been a lot of sales on black
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friday and cyber monday and that sort of thing. well, that is how you get the economy moving. if you can put some money into the pockets of working people, it pumps up the economy and everyone does better, including the very wealthy. but they don't seem to see it that way. >> are democrats effectively taking the other side of this argument? >> i actually think democrats have been a lot more aggressive lately than i've seen them in a long time. dems are finally beginning to fight back. now, will they sustain it? i don't know. but, you know, it's good to see it at least in the short term. >> if you did not -- i don't know if you caught it or not but chuck schumer earlier tonight -- >> i did see chuck. chuck was excellent. >> if you did not see the chuck schumer appearance on ed schultz tonight, watch it on the repeat of ed tonight or podcast it. it was really good if you're looking for the example of the kind of thing bob is talking about. bob herbert, thank you for being here. it's always really nice to have you here. >> great to see you. >> bob herbert i should say is not only a former columnist for the "new york times," currently a distinguished senior fellow at
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demos, contributor to and to the american prospect. just ahead, republican presidential contender buddy romer will be my guest for the interview. i'm very pleased to have him on the program. governor roemer has never appeared on other tv shows to accuse me of ducking him or claim that i'm afraid of him. unlike another candidate that's no longer in the race. a man i could mention. whose initials are tim pawlenty. but i'll talk about that later. thanks. ♪ [ male announcer ] they've been tested, built and driven like no other. and now they're being offered like no other. come to the winter event and get an exceptional offer on the mercedes-benz of your dreams. it's our way of showing a little holiday spirit. but hurry -- the offer ends soon. ♪ the other office devices? they don't get me. they're all like, "hey, brother, doesn't it bother you that no one notices you?" and i'm like,
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election season is almost
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here finally, and boy, is the race close. according to the latest polling information out tonight, the space shuttle with flowers on it is out in front, but the guitar is well within the margin of error in second place. and i wouldn't count out the soccer ball just yet. the stove and the traffic light meanwhile are in the low single digits. the best new thing in the world tonight is coming up, and a deadly serious and sort of inspiring politics story turns out to have a weird field of detailed pictograms you need to be able to look at in order to explain it. best new thing in the world today, that is coming up. plus, which republican presidential contender is talking smack about this show in a way that he cannot back up? that's ahead. ♪ our machines help identify
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but i always thought she was, you know, bold and courageous. and even though i disagreed with her. and now she's ducking me. so tell her to come out and let's have it on. let's get it on. >> let's. and i would love to. and i would do if you weren't just talking smack without any intention of backing it up, sir. tim pawlenty as governor of minnesota was a guest on this show a number of times in 2008 and in 2009. i always enjoyed him as a guest. i always appreciate when republican elected officials are willing to talk to me. it was fun for me. i think it was fun for him. at least that's what he said all four times he was on this show. >> governor pawlenty it's a real pleasure to have you on the show tonight. thank you so much for being with us. >> well, rachel, thanks for giving a republican a shot on this show. we appreciate it. >> absolutely. i keep asking. you guys are so recalcitrant. that's why we're very happy to have you. >> i'm available. i'm available. >> very good. very good. >> governor pawlenty, it is very kind of you to make the time to be with us tonight. it's hard to get republicans to be on the show. i'm really glad you decided to come back to us.
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>> i'm happy to be here. and you're funny, rachel. >> thank you. it's nice of you to spap. >> governor pawlenty, it is kind of you to come back on the show. thanks for joining us. >> glad to do it. thank you for having me. >> dr. maddow, good to be with you. you're a student of the coleman-franken saga. that's an impressive chronology you ripped off there. >> did i get the chronology right? >> you did. i'm impressed. you know quite a bit about the case. >> in the rough and tumble case of cable news, governor tim pawlenty and me, we were like this. we were cordial. we exchanged pleasantries. no animosity. right? this also happens to be a hand gesture a person makes behind their own back when they're not telling the truth. shortly after governor pawlenty and i had a good guest experience together, he started running for president for the current cycle, for the 2012 campaign. his campaign tried to reinvent him as the politics equivalent of an action movie star. as a bit of a he-man. >> if prosperity were easy, everybody around the world would be prosperous. if freedom were easy, everybody around the world would be free. if security were easy, everybody
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around the world would be secure. they are not. >> governor pawlenty's presidential campaign, despite those awesome ads, did not go that well. it never really went anywhere in the polls and he quit after the ames, iowa straw poll in august. but even now that he's just a surrogate for mitt romney, a man he spent years running against, governor pawlenty seems to be sticking with the he-man persona as best he can. at least on cable. >> she's ducking me. so tell her to come out and let's have it on. let's get it on. >> that was on "the last word with lawrence o'donnell" on november 10th. thinking there must have been some mistake, some misunderstanding, i had our booking producer call you the very next day, hey, we saw you on lawrence, we'd love to have you on the show, we haven't been ducking you. spokesperson for governor pawlenty says sorry, the governor's traveling this week and next but the governor will look at his calendar to see when he's available. week and a half goes by, we hear nothing. november 21st we call back, ask the spokesman again if governor pawlenty might be available sometime soon to, as he put it,
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get it on. no response. then again today our producer calls the spokesperson's office again to find out when we are going to be getting it on since he has been pounding his chest on the tv and saying i'm ducking him. no answer. no reply. former governor and former presidential candidate tim pawlenty is going to be here at msnbc tonight, right here on msnbc. but not talking to me. he will be visiting again with lawrence o'donnell on "the last word" again tonight which means you should definitely watch "the last word with lawrence o'donnell" tonight. it should be great. it also means that tim pawlenty may play a tough guy politics action hero on tv who wants to get it on and all that. but apparently, when he says that, he's just kidding. governor pawlenty, you say i'm ducking you, but at this point, i'm rubber, you're glue. stop talking smack if you can't back it up. i'm just a piece of dirt stuck here in a rut.
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usually i always think, you know, birds of a feather flock together. >> yeah, i hear you. that's called prejudice. >> well, no. it's not. because i go by people's actions. and actions -- >> well, look at mine. >> your party. but you're affiliated with that party. >> look at mine. >> the actions with your party, though -- >> look at mine.
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>> -- are regressive to people, working class people, the poor people, minority people, to women. what are you going to do about that? what are you going to do different? are you pro choice? >> no. >> i mean, i just -- >> we're going to disagree on some things, but here's why i'm here. we agree on the main thing. >> what do we agree on? >> you've got to cut off the money. >> former louisiana governor buddy roemer has run essentially a single-issue campaign this year. his signature issue, almost his whole deal, is getting big money out of politics. stopping billionaires and rich corporations from having outsized influence in our democracy. yes, he is running as a republican. and for this single-minded focus mr. roemer has received single-digit support from republican voters, often 1%, sometimes less than that. buddy roemer was an early and outspoken supporter of the occupy wall street movement. he's visited occupy sites in new york and in washington, d.c., asking people he met there for their support. and that makes him essentially the only republican presidential contender who's even trying to talk to constituencies outside the label -- excuse me, the
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republican base. or to people to whom they'd like to sell their books and dvds, which is another way to approach campaigning. yesterday mr. roemer announced his pick for a vice presidential running mate. and although the announcement came from an ambitiously cross-partisan place, mr. roemer's pick was frankly a politician who is sure to win almost nobody's heart. connecticut senator joe lieberman. a former democrat who has now decided not to run again for his own senate seat, let alone for anything else. quoting mr. roemer, "i'm asking independent-minded voters to imagine what we could accomplish with this ticket. americans are justifiably frustrated with their politicians and parties. joe and i could change that. to me it's a dream team." to me it's a dream team." aside from mr. roemer's own political fortunes, the main problem with the dream team idea, nobody asked joe lieberman to imagine what the roemer/lieberman ticket could do. that left the magazine "the weekly standard" to ask mr. lieberman about it. his spokesman responded with a no, saying the senator has been there, done that, and he has the
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t-shirt and chad to prove it. joining us tonight for the interview, republican presidential candidate and former governor of louisiana, buddy roemer. mr. roemer, thank you for coming on the show. nice to see you again. >> thank you, rachel. good to be back. >> did you and tim pawlenty bond backstage while he and i were having our -- >> he's coming after you, raich. >> yeah. we'll see. >> do not be afraid. >> you know, i'm not. all right. i do not know how to run for president, obviously. so caveat emptor. >> me either. >> well, the connecticut for lieberman party does not seem like your ticket to the top. >> well, it was an idea. the idea is that maybe what america needs is not a party but a country built from the center. and maybe men and women with different backgrounds but the same belief in america could join a unity party and pull this country together. i think we're in trouble. i my we're headed in the wrong direction. look at the debt. look at the lack of jobs.
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look at the lack of diversity. look at the difference between the top 1% and the bottom 95%. you saw the "union leader." they won't pick mitt romney because he represents the top 1%. so what do they get? they got the lobbyist for the top 1%. they really got some distance. we're in trouble, rachel. and it's not just my party. both parties are together in one thing. they'll take any check from any place to get re-elected. it's not right, and it's not healthy, rachel. >> you have been running, as i said -- i don't mean to belittle your candidacy this way. i mean it as a compliment. you have been running as a strong single-issue candidate, trying to get this issue of money in politics into at least the discussion in this campaign. >> right. no debates. >> but it's -- >> i haven't been on a single debate. you say i have 1% or 2% in the policy. 2% has been my tops last week. 1 out of 50 americans. do you know how many americans even know i'm running? less than 10%.
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i mean, i can't get on the debate. would you think, if you and i started a year ago, would you think a man who's been a four-time elected congressman, who's been elected governor, who's built a billion-dollar bank with the help of others but no help from the federal government, a successful businessman, do you think a man who talks about a leader that needs to be free, do you think he would get on a debate? i have not been asked to a single debate. i've been a republican for 20 years. i've tried to build my party or help build it in louisiana. i'm proud of my record. but i cannot get on a debate when others who have no political experience at all -- i mean, there's a pizza guy on the debate. not to put herman cain down. but my god, you're running for president. should some experience count? you know what they don't want to hear, rachel? they don't want to hear about the money. neither party does. republicans particularly.
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the only ones asked are the ones that raise a lot of money in the last 90 days. do you know that was a criterion for the last debate? did you raise $500,000 in the last 90 days? is that the way you pick a president, rachel? >> when i think about your effort and who you are talking to and the different constituencies you have chosen to address with the different things that you have done, what i'm wondering is whether or not you really think there's an audience among conservative voters who make up the electorate for gop primary, whether conservatives want to hear about money in politics or whether -- >> we don't know. >> you don't know. >> you don't know. >> if all of the republican candidates, all of the big candidates, all have dark money behind them. >> all of them. >> not a peep from the voters about that. >> not a peep. but because no one's raised the issue. it's a catch 22. unless you walk in the room and said there's a fire here, nobody knows the room's burning. they just know there's a million and a half fewer jobs than there were 12 years ago.
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they know we're one of the lowest countries in the industrial world with the difference between those at the top and those at the bottom. they know we're in trouble. but they're not sure where to look. the room's on fire. i'm looking at americans elect, a unity group outside of the republican party who would go right to independents and republicans and liberals and conservatives who put their country first. i plan on announcing as a candidate for that ticket. i'm a republican, but i'm a prouder american. i'll stay in the republican primary and do all i can. but i need a stage to talk about what's really wrong with america, rachel. and what's wrong is this -- a big check gets first in line, and everybody else is forgotten. it's not right. >> are you staying in this no matter what happens next? how long can you stay in this? >> i'm going as far as i can. i've gotten contributions from 50 states. i've raised a quarter of a million dollars. at $60 the average give.
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i'm free. if i can get an audience, we'll see if this is an election issue. it ought to be. >> former louisiana governor buddy roemer. thank you for being here. and if i put you on the spot with governor pawlenty backstage, i apologize for any personal affront. but it's really nice to have you back here, sir. i hope to see you back soon. thanks. best new thing in the world, coming up. ♪ [ male announcer ] you never know when a moment might turn into something more. and when it does men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis for daily use. cialis for daily use is a clinically proven low-dose tablet you take every day, so you can be ready anytime the moment's right. ♪ [ man ] tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medications and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sexual activity. don't take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure.
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elephant or a democratic donkey. these are random images, randomly assigned to each candidate and each party by egypt's supreme elections commission. and it's random. so each party's represented by something like a soccer ball or a traffic light or an umbrella or a viking ship. now, if you got the viking ship, you're probably psyched. i mean, that's not bad. you can campaign on i'll be a warrior for you or something. or a camera. not necessarily bad. it could mean i'm for free speech. could also mean yay surveillance. i'm not sure about the space shuttle with flowers on it, what that's supposed to symbolize. although various reports today have said that in egyptian colloquial slang rocket means hottie. then there's the toothbrush for brushing out the plaque of corruption. egypt has been using a pictorial system on its ballot since the 1950s. although egypt's overall track frord using pictorial symbols goes back a lot, lot longer than that. but for today and tomorrow's historic high turnout high-participation post-dictatorship election in egypt, they had to come up with 250 symbols, meaning some lucky somebody got