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tv   The Last Word  MSNBC  April 19, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm EDT

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going bzzz. that's the best thing in the world today. that does it for us tonight. now it's the "last word" with lawrence o'donnell. we have a new nbc news "wall street journal" poll tonight, which means more bad news for mitt romney. a couple of new polls out. the new nbc news "wall street journal" poll -- >> polls -- >> polls indicate -- >> we've got months of this. >> this is the first full week of the full-on campaign. round one of the general election. >> i'm probably going to need a helmet between now and november. what do you think? >> a poll out today shows the president up. >> 42% of registered voters have a favorable view of the president -- >> this is a snapshot in time. >> does 29% see romney in a favorable light? >> president obama leads by ten points in the enthusiasm gap. >> the likability factor is part of all of this.
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>> and the trustworthy thing. >> romney has a lot more baggage than the president. >> i wasn't born with a silver spoon in my mouth. >> i know the president likes to attack fellow americans, particularly those successful like my dad. >> the "new york times" poll shows the candidate lost in a dead heat. >> i'll use my energy to help the american people go to work. >> everywhere he goes, he's talking about the economy. >> this election will be based on the facts of the economy. >> the economy. >> the economy. >> we're going to talk about eco -- >> we have months of this. mitt romney has a gender gap, but he has a latino gap. >> the republican primary was not helpful in that regard. >> the republican primary is, of course, why we're hearing so much about marco rubio. >> if i do a good job as vice president -- i'm sorry. >> clearly he's got his own daydreams. >> i'm sorry. and we now know what mitt romney is going to do after he
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loses the presidential election. that man is going to be a new-age motivational speaker waking you up to the power of dreamers. >> in america, individuals pursuing their dreams in various ways, their happiness and the ways they chose would lead to enterprises being built some successful, some not, but overall, the economy would be listed by free people pursuing their dreams. these dreamers have been crushed over the last 3 1/2 years. this is time for us to reignite, rekindle the power of dreamers, to welcome dreamers here from other nations that come here legally. to have people from their own nation. >> i guarantee you, you heard it here first. alex wagner, you heard it here first, the power of dreamers. will be the title of self-help
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get rich quick book that mitt and ann romney will co-author during the fifth year of the obama presidency. today, mitt romney chased president obama to lorain county, ohio, where the president spoke yesterday. regular guy, mitt romney, tried to play the simon cowell judge of the political game show "who is the real regular guy?" >> this is a president who doesn't understand, i don't think, exactly what the american people are experiencing. he needs to sit down with folks. >> on fox news this morning, romney was asked to respond to this comment president obama made yesterday. >> somebody gave me an education. i wasn't born with a silver spoon in my mouth. michelle wasn't. but somebody gave us a chance. just like these folks are looking for a chance. >> i'm certainly not going to apologize for my dad and his success in life. he was born poor.
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he worked his way to become very successful despite the fact that he didn't have a college degree. and one of the things he wanted to do was to provide for me and my brother and sisters. i'm not going to apologize for my dad's success. but i know the president likes to attack fellow americans. he's always looking for a scapegoat, particularly those that have been successful like my dad. and i'm not going to rise to that. >> mitt romney is, of course, lying about his father being born poor. we'll have more on that in a moment. the new nbc news "wall street journal" poll out tonight shows mitt romney losing to president obama by six points in a head-to-head match-up with president obama at 49 and mitt romney at 43%. like previous polls, it shows mitt romney getting crushed on the questions relating to who understands regular guys. asked who is the better choice when it comes to looking out for the middle class? 48% say president obama, 27% say mitt romney.
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asked who was the better choice when it comes to caring about average people? 52% say president obama. 22% say mitt romney. and asked who is compassionate enough to understand average people? 52% say president obama, 23% say mitt romney. and none say what does average people mean? joining me now are alex wagner, the host of msnbc's "now with alex wagner." and an msnbc political analyst. and an average person. >> was that the phrase in the poll thing? average people. >> average people are born and die and that way -- i don't know, lawrence -- who's working -- >> as the only person here born with a silver spoon anywhere near her, i know carl wagner. >> oh, wow. >> i was born with a -- i
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believe, a wooden spoon. one of the ones that came with the ice cream. >> i was born with -- >> this regular guy competition is not going well. >> it's not -- it's a terrible idea if you're mitt romney and you have a four-car car elevator you're building, you have offshore accounts in the cayman islands and hundreds of millions of dollars in your name and trying to make the case of being in touch with the average joe. the issue for mitt romney -- well, it's actually the issue for the president are on all of those metrics. likability, you know, compassion, setting aside compassion for the legal dreamers and the illegal dreamers. mitt romney is in trouble. the good news for mitt romney is that when you ask voters about the economy, there's a much closer margin there. and that's what the president has to sort of deal with in the next couple of months, which is the difference, likability and trustworthiness. and for some reason, the american public which i don't think has scrutinized mitt romney or his policies thinks to
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some degree he can be a steward of the economy and the president that has got to prove that wrong. >> well, see, the economy is a vaguer question than do you think you should raise taxes on people making over $1 million and so forth? and that's why i think that may be why romney performs very, very close to the president, slightly better than the president in some polls on the economy. because there's something vague about that question. >> yeah, no, i think there's a couple of things. i think the big challenge for obama and for democrats in the rest of this campaign is sort of marrying the idea -- the arguments they're making now for tax fairness, for protecting the social safety net, for investing in education and these sorts of things, marrying that with the idea that this is not a moral question as much as this is an economic question. we are in this economic mess right now if you want to get out of it, you need to provide for social mobility. you need to, fine, you know, deal with the deficit, you're going to have to have upper income people pay more taxes because you're going to have to preserve these middle class fortifying institutions. i think right now, the way these things are presented too often,
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it plays to the republican advantage where you can look at the rhetoric that comes out from obama and democrats and say, well, this is robin hood stuff. this is a moral, let's steal from the rich and redistribute the wealth. this is essential to growing the economy just like the republicans talk about it. >> mitt romney went in search of a friendly interview, which he could expect at cnbc, larry kudlow did the honors. you know, there's romney talking to the two cadillac audience out there. and kudlow threw him a curve ball. let's listen to this. >> you yourself have been an investor, are you surprised at how well the stock market has done? it's about doubled since early 2009. are you surprised how well stocks have done? what do you think that means? what do you think that's saying? >> well, i've never been one to try to predict the stock market or explain what's happening in the stock market. i think investors look at american industry and say that entrepreneurs and managers and inventors in america have
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continued to defy the odds, that they have made their businesses more productive, that they've been able to achieve higher levels of profitability. >> what i love about this question and answer is that neither larry kudlow, my pal larry kudlow nor mitt romney used the word obama in a question. larry says, you know, since early 2009 -- okay. you could say, since president obama's been president, the stock market has doubled and, alex, the word obama doesn't appear in -- >> well, it doesn't appear when you're talking about sort of a rosy picture or any semblance of good news. one thing to be certain is that the stock market is not the american economy. that said, i mean, the republican party and specifically -- >> cnbc thinks it is, though. >> well, i will refrain to comment on that analysis. mitt romney and the republican party are constitutionally incapable of giving the president any credit for an economic rebound and that comes as no surprise. >> steve, the overall number in the nbc poll is six-point gap,
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49%, 43%. we had the "new york times" yesterday poll, had them tied 46%, something like that. this is the one that has the widest margin. but all of these numbers are actually behaving within the margin of error of all of those polls. when a poll comes out at 46%, 46%, it has a margin of error where it could actually be 49% or 43%. we haven't
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>> you get a 50% number for i have reservations about this guy. and so that's why, i think, you know, yeah, romney's clear of the primary now, mostly, but he has to still worry about these people, and he's going to have to worry about them through the campaign, and that's going to force all sorts of uncomfortable issues and uncomfortable moments where he's got to choose between i don't want to exacerbate these reservations, but i want to win of these swing voters essential to winning in the fall and impossible situations that will come along, i think. >> and alex, the president has ways of getting voters who are not single-issue voters that romney doesn't have. if you aren't with the president on the economy but he reminds you about where osama bin laden is now and he reminds you about what the american troop level is in iraq right now, that's the kind of thing that it seems to me can steer a voter back toward president obama. >> sure. i mean, look, i will say you may be angry with the president if you're far on the left or far on the right. but he has been rather
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consistent. he's offered a broad vision and a series of principles where he wants to take this country. and i think he'll continue to lay out that vision in the coming months. and the issue with mitt romney, he's been anything but consistent. and so as voters turn their radios into the romney dial, it's unclear whether they're going to stay on the station. >> steve, does the romney campaign have any strategy other than more ann romney? about how to humanize mitt romney? >> you know, it's -- >> when you look at the numbers inside these polls, it is a serious problem. >> well, and i think part of it too is there's the basic, you know, mitt romney's biggest problem is mitt romney. i don't know if he can overcome being himself if that's the basic challenge of the fall campaign. but another problem he has here and i think it contributes to this image is what he's been forced to say and to do to win the republican nomination. he's been forced to present himself in very -- in ways that are very unflattering to sort of the middle of the american electorate. so you would say, okay, logically here for a candidate like this, now is the time to
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make some sort of dramatic stand, maybe against your party base, against something unpopular you had to say. but that gets into what alex is saying. the other thing that's driving his negative numbers now is the perception of the guy doesn't believe in anything and will say anything to get elected. so if he takes, you know, the classic thing is the sister soldier moment. if mitt romney looks to have the moment, it may make the whole inauthentic way that much worse because everyone's expecting him to do it. >> this thing about my father was born poor. he was born to a very prosperous family, in fact, in utah. they then moved to mexico in order to continue the practice of polygamy in mexico. they fled mexico, and yes, they had to leave some of their property behind which they still owned and romney still owned today. and when they got to this country, they got a deal, a welfare handout of $100,000 from
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the american government for mormons who were displaced from mexico. and so this -- my father was born poor, he knows is a lie. i mean, why even try that? >> the president didn't -- look, i mean, you can say he was sort of indicting romney by saying he wasn't born with a silver spoon in his mouth. but he was talking about getting a fair shot, which was part of his message and talking about education and having a chance. somehow mitt romney has taken this as an indictment for his family and personal wealth. >> the spoon thing is something politicians have used for decades before romney existed. >> obama himself used it to talk about harry reid, to talk about kent conrad in the past two or three years. he has said this himself. and the other thing is fine, you want to bring george romney into this. think about the message that obama was trying to convey there. it was basically an affirmation of the social contract.
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i got ahead because there was a safety net that was there to propel me and my wife forward. george romney believed deeply in the social safety net who supported education programs, anti-poverty programs, public housing. look at what he did at home. >> and palled around -- >> yeah. >> alex wagner of "now" and steve carnaki. thank you very much for joining me tonight. >> thanks, lawrence. >> sure. coming up, a catholic bishop compares president obama to who else? hitler and stalin. that's ahead. and regular guy mitt romney attacks president obama for not being a regular guy. stephanie cutter of the obama campaign joins me next to discuss the president's regular guyness. and mitt romney who constantly worships small business when he's reading from a teleprompter attacked a small businessman in pennsylvania yesterday and that small
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i'm going on break! the more you bundle, the more you save. now, that's progressive. the vatican says american nuns are turning into radical feminists because they are too worried about poverty and not worried enough about stopping marriage equality, that's coming up. and in the re-write, mitt romney is trying to show small business owners he's really just like them. too bad he insulted a small business owner in pennsylvania this week. my job is to find the next big sound.
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his campaign is not going to be about vision, it's going to be about division. he's going to be focusing on different americans and trying to scapegoat other people for his own failures. you will see him attack success day in and day out. and one thing you know is if you attack success, you're going to have less of it. >> that was mitt romney today speaking at an empty factory in ohio under the banner reading obama isn't working. the romney campaign was not concerned that the factory actually shut down not during the obama administration but during the administration of george w. bush. here to respond is the deputy manager of the obama re-election campaign stephanie cutter. thanks for joining me tonight, stephanie. >> thanks for having me. >> i interpreted here on this show last night the president's silver spoon comment to be a reference somewhat veiled
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reference to mitt romney, the president could hope some voters took that as a comparison to mitt romney. but i'm very surprised that mitt romney fell for it and actually tried to make it an issue himself. did you think you were going to get that lucky with mitt romney? >> well, you know, the president has said that he wasn't born with a silver spoon in his mouth before. and the point that he's making is that he's been the beneficiary of good policies that allows everybody to get ahead, not just those at the top. and mitt romney took that to mean that the president was talking about him. and instead of explaining how he's going to help everybody be ccessful, instead of people just like him, he attacked the president and said the president was being divisive. and that's not the case. the president was in ohio yesterday talking about policies that he put in place and policies that he stands for that helps everybody get ahead. worker training, job training, education, all of the things that prepared the president to
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be successful. and, you know, as you mentioned coming in, mitt romney was in ohio standing in an empty factory blaming the president for a factory that was shut down before we were even elected. and it was shut down because of the policies of the previous administration, the same policies that mitt romney wants to go back to. and instead of laying out a vision for how he's going to grow the economy or help everybody get ahead, he tried to turn it back on the president and really laid out a series of distortions of what's happened in this economy under president obama. >> we've seen recently some speculation about possible vice presidential candidates that mitt romney could pick and the discussion that, you know, could marco rubio solve mitt romney's problems with latino voters and basically simply by putting that name on the ticket does that get him out of the trouble that he has caused for himself with
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voters by taking such a hard anti-immigration line in the presidential primary? do you think that marco rubio is that solution to that problem for mitt romney? >> no. i don't. i don't think somebody else can solve your problems. you know, mitt romney has -- was the most extreme candidate on immigration in the republican primary -- >> and by the way, stephanie, that's not just according to you. ann coulter has said that and we've replayed the video of it many times. that was one of the ways he got to this point where he could get this nomination. >> absolutely. absolutely. you know, lawrence, you've seen he's trying to walk away from his position on the arizona immigration law saying that he was really only talking about everify. well, he spent the last 2 1/2 months letting people believe. if that's the case, and i don't believe it's the case. i believe he was supporting the entire arizona immigration law because let's remember he said on day one he was going to stop these lawsuits against the arizona law. but if that's the case, if we
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are to believe what mitt romney said that he was only standing for the e-verify piece of the arizona law, why didn't he say that over the last 2 1/2 months? he didn't say that because he was trying to deceive republican voters into believing that he was a true conservative. you know, i think that leaves mitt romney with real problems. you've seen the numbers and the nbc poll out today that there's upwards of 40-point margin on the hispanic vote and that's only going to grow. and there's a reason for it, you know, mitt romney said that, you know, in his speech today that he wanted to make america, you know, great for all dreamers, including illegal immigrants. well, let's remember that he said he wanted to make conditions here so bad for illegal immigrants that they would self-deport. is that his version of the american dream? because i don't think that's exactly what everybody else's version of the american dream is. >> carl rove said today in the
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"wall street journal" that republicans can win this argument -- this was on the buffett rule. he says they can say that its effect on the deficit will be minuscule, now's not the time raising taxes especially on job creators and there should be a limit on what government can take from anyone. he's giving them rhetorical talking points advice. he's not even seriously trying to make the case that this stuff is real. can mitt romney sell that argument? >> well, i think the argument is not really sellable because if you look at the facts that it's not the time to raise taxes on job creators. we're talking about millionaires and billionaires here. and if you look at under carl rove's time in the white house, where we gave these tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires, we had the slowest job growth in generations. so that's fact number one. fact number two, this isn't just about the deficit. this is about everybody paying their fair share so that we can make investments in the things we need to grow the middle class and make our economy stronger.
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ultimately, it's about a choice. if you want to reduce the deficit, you have to cut somewhere or you have to increase revenue. how are you going to do that? rather than slicing and dicing medicare or cutting off student aid, why don't we ask everybody to pay their fair share? and millionaires and billionaires to pay at least the same tax rate as the middle class. that only seems fair and that only seems like a good economic argument so i don't think carl rove is going to win that. >> stephanie cutter, thank you very much for joining us tonight. >> thank you. coming up, american nuns are being cited for their work on poverty and social justice. and by cited, i mean reprimanded by the vatican because they're spending too much time on poverty and not enough on stopping marriage equality. that's coming up. and mitt romney tries to rewrite his experience as an investment banker. he wants you to believe that he just started up a small business and got kind of lucky.
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the lies of mitt romney's resume. that's in the rewrite. ♪ there's another way to minimize litter box odor: purina tidy cats. our premium litters now work harder to help neutralize odors in multiple cat homes. purina tidy cats. keep your home smelling like home. today i own 165 wendy's restaurants. and i get my financing from ge capital. but i also get stuff that goes way beyond banking. we not only lend people money, we help them save it.
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follow the wings. easy label, right? but that label can lead to prejudice and discrimination, and we don't want to go there. so let's try to see people for who they really are. you can help create a more united states. the more you know. mitt romney didn't do himself any favors with small business in pennsylvania. when he insulted a small businessman who baked a plate of cookies at a campaign event. cookies baked by a local republican baker. the insulted baker will join me. and mitt romney is now trying to pretend he once was a small business guy. mitt romney's business lies are in tonight's rewrite. and in the politics of religion tonight, some leaders of the catholic church are
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worried that american nuns are spending too much time helping the poor and not enough time opposing gay marriage and abortion. that's next. that's good morning, veggie style. hmmm. for half the calories plus veggie nutrition. could've had a v8. 11 years playing the outfield, and i got no plans to retire. [ female announcer ] aging may slow a dog down, but iams helps keep dogs playing year after year with our age-specific nutrition. and now, even for dogs 11 and older with new iams senior plus. it helps boost the immune response to that of an adult dog and helps fight signs of aging. [ dog ] i'll never be a bench-warmer. [ female announcer ] new iams senior plus. see the iams difference or your money back. [ dog ] i am an iams dog for life.
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temptations. it's the first jell-o that's just for adults. in the spotlight tonight, the politics of religion. in his sermon last weekend, the catholic bishop compared president obama to hitler and stalin. >> hitler and stalin at their better moments would just barely tolerate some churches remaining
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open, but would not tolerate any competition with the state in education, social services, and health care. in clear violation of our first amendment rights, president obama with his radical pro-abortion and extreme secularist agenda now seems intent on following a similar path. >> speaking of clear violations, those words leave the roman catholic church in clear violation of the irs code banning tax exempt religious organizations from participating in or intervening in any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. yesterday, the vatican reprimanded american nuns on political grounds.
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so surely a reprimand from the vatican to the political bishop you just saw attacking president obama should be coming any moment now unless, of course, the vatican is only upset with religious people who seem to be leaning slightly left. the vatican charged the leadership conference of women religious, the nation's largest group of catholic nuns of espousing radical feminist ideas and challenging church doctrine on the ordination of women -- appointed peter sartane. he already has his hands full in seattle where he's collecting signature to put referendum 34 on the ballot. it would reverse the marriage equality law signed if february, but several catholic parishes have refused to join in this effort. one church even gave their priest a standing ovation after he announced the church would
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not participate. the reverend tim clark said the standing ovation experienced during one of the masses says less about me and much more about the health of this parish. i only wish the archbishop could have experienced the sustained applause, the serious fidelium of people he needs to listen to this voice. that is my prayer. and in news just in in catholic comedy, the catholic league is objecting to a piece run by jon stewart this week, which we reran portions of on this show where jon stewart talked about how fox news treats the war on women. the catholic league now says because that was such an offensive piece that they are trying to stop jon stewart. i'm going to quote from their statement. our effort against stewart
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includes asking his most consistent sponsors to pull their advertising if necessary we are not ruling out a boycott of their products and a lengthy public relations campaign. the goal, to get him to apologize. if that doesn't work, we can guarantee that his reputation will never be the same. the catholic league has absolutely no official affiliation with that other thing you've heard of, the catholic church. it is run by a fraudulent operator who is a divorced man, which is the kind of thing that used to get you excommunicated in the catholic church. jon stewart's reputation will be unaffected by that sort of nonsense. joining me now is sister jeanine gramick for the national coalition of american nuns. she was also silenced by the vatican in 1999 for ministering to gays and lesbians.
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and jeff stone, communications director of dignity usa which advocates for justice and the lgbt community within the catholic church. jeff stone, a bishop standing in a pulpit in a mass in this country comparing president barack obama to hitler and stalin, how could that possibly happen? >> well, i think it's really kind of an act of desperation, lawrence. i think it's an example of how out of touch the church is with the lay people. you know, we see with gay issues particularly. and you refer to the parishes in seattle that are refusing to go along with the campaign to overturn gay marriage there. we have national polls showing it's 71% of american catholics support civil marriage for same-sex couples. we have a hierarchy that is very much out of touch with where the people of the church are. and i think people need to be very careful about throwing
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around hitler comparisons. >> sister jeanine, what do you make of the vatican's reaction to american nuns? >> well, may i comment on the -- >> please. >> the statement that the bishop made comparing president obama with hitler or stalin. i think that bishops need to be very careful about making comparisons that are totalitarian. because there's been much criticism justifiable criticism that the government of the catholic church is very totalitarian. and that is what we're seeing now with the vatican trying to control -- that's what it really is, control the women religious in the united states. i think basically we women come from a different conception of church from the vatican. we are -- we are following what
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the vatican -- the second church, talked about the church as a community. and in the community people disagree. but in a totalitarian institution, there is no disagreement. and so this is the clash that we're seeing. >> sister, could you explain to us what it means to be silenced by the vatican? and how you can be speaking to us tonight? >> well, i -- to be silenced by the vatican means that the vatican makes some pronouncement that some theologian cannot write or some sister cannot speak or whatever the particular issue of silencing is. but unless one complies with that request, if you will, the individuals or organization or has only power if we exceed to that power.
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so at the time that the vatican said that i should no longer be speaking as an advocate for lesbian or gay catholics, my response was that i -- i choose not to collaborate in that oppression. because the vatican was asking me to silence myself, which is a basic human right. >> certainly sounds like a totalitarian dictate -- >> yeah, it does, lawrence. and it's ironic because the highest law of the catholic church is the law of conscience. and pope benedict himself has spoken eloquently about it. even if you find your conscience is in disagreement, even with the words of the pope, you are obligated in your conscience to follow your conscience. and that's what these catholics in seattle are doing. >> and catholicism has been full of argument for its entire history as has most of the religion classes i was in in 12 years of catholic education. sister jeanine, thank you for
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joining us tonight. thank you very much. >> thank you. coming up, mitt romney is padding his resume with a little item about small business. mitt romney's real business record is in tonight's rewrite. and the small business owners that mitt romney insulted at a campaign event will get tonight's "last word." the spark business card from capital one. choose unlimited rewards with double miles or 2% cash back on every purchase, every day! wait! your boa. what's in your wallet? got the mirrors all adjusted? you can see everything ok? just stay off the freeways, all right? i don't want you going out on those yet. mmm-hmm. and just leave your phone in your purse. i don't want you texting, all right? daddy...ok! ok, here you go.
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or if you have any allergic reactions such as rash, hives, swelling of the lips, tongue or throat, or difficulty breathing or swallowing, stop taking cialis and get medical help right away. ask your doctor about cialis for daily use and a 30-tablet free trial. when mitt romney said that cookies at a campaign event of his looked like they were made at seven-eleven, he insulted seven-eleven and the small business owner who baked those cookies. that insulted pennsylvania baker gets tonight's "last word." becs and the education that i had. they're just part of who i am. she convinced me that there was no limit to what we could learn. i don't think i'd be here today had i not had a wonderful science teacher. a teacher can make a huge difference in a child's life. he would never give up on any of us.
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thank you dr. newfield. you had a big impact on me. fiona here was just telling me that ford dealers sell a new tire like...every five seconds, how's that possible? well, we purchase 3 million a year. you just sold one right now didn't you? that's correct. major brands. 11 major brands. oop,there goes another one. well we'll beat anybody's advertised price. and you just did it right there, what's that called? the low price tire guarantee. wait for it, there goes another one. get a $100 rebate, plus the low price tire guarantee during the big tire event.
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look at that. it's happening right there every five seconds. your not going to run out are you? no. in tonight's rewrite, mitt romney tries once again to rewrite the real romney. here he is in pennsylvania talking about his experience starting up a small business, little tiny business. >> my life is becoming more of an open book. i had imagined years ago. but i spent 25 years of my life in business, and i started what was a small business which has grown very successfully over the years. >> and i started what was a small business? that small business he's talking about is bain capital where he made the hundreds of millions of dollars that he and his family live on now that he's as he has
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described it unemployed. that small business bain capital is a partner with nbc universal in owning the weather channel. that small business now has offices in 11 cities on three continents managing assets worth $66 billion. how small was this business when mitt romney started it? and what was it really like for mitt romney starting that small business? and for that matter, did mitt romney really start it? for the real story, we once again turn to the real romney. readings in the real romney. here's how it happened. bain, bill bain proposed romney would become the head of a new company to be called bain capital with seed money from bill bain and other partners at bain and company. bain capital would raise tens of
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millions of dollars, invest in start-ups and troubled businesses, apply bain's brand of management advice and then resell the revitalized companies or sell their shares to the public for a profit. romney explained to bain that he didn't want to risk his position, earnings, and reputation on an experiment. so bain sweetened the pot. bill bain guaranteed that if the experiment failed, romney would get his old job and salary back, plus any raises he would've earned during his absence. still, romney worried about the impact of his reputation -- on his reputation if he proved unable to do the job. again, the pot was sweetened. bain promised that if necessary, he would craft a cover story --
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a what? he would craft a cover story saying that romney's return to bain and company was needed because of his value as a consultant. so what did mitt romney risk in starting this so-called small business that he really didn't start? absolutely nothing, not a penny. as bill bain explains it, in the real romney, "there was no professional or financial risk." end of story. mitt romney's lying is extraordinary. even for a politician. and it is catching the attention of some of our most experienced and wise observers of political lying. richard cohen calls romney a smooth liar with a "bulletproof demeanor." richard cullen makes a
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persuasive case that romney came to rely on lying as a basic business tactic. as a basic tool of the trade in the business world. like most of us, romney belongs to more than one culture. he belongs to a religious culture, a political culture, but it is the businessman's culture that he belongs to that seems to have shaped him in the ways that are most important to his campaign. he does not talk about his religion, he does not talk about his past in politics, but he does talk about his past in business. it is the only part of his past that he's actually willing to talk about. and when he talks about it, he is as likely to lie about it as not. and he thinks he knows why. let's find the richard cullen quote. this is great. richard cullen says what his
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career has given him is the businessman's concept of self. that what he does is not who he is. this is what enables the slum lord to be a charitable man. this is what enables the corporate raider to endow his university. business is business. it's what you do, it's not who you are. lying isn't a sin, it's a business plan. everyone in america depends on the postal service.
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i get my cancer medications through the mail. now washington, they're looking at shutting down post offices coast to coast. closing plants is not the answer. they want to cut 100,000 jobs. it's gonna cost us more, and the service is gonna be less. we could lose clientele because of increased mailing times. the ripple effect is going to be devastating. congress created the problem. and if our legislators get on the ball, they can make the right decisions. today i own 165 wendy's restaurants. and i get my financing from ge capital. but i also get stuff that goes way beyond banking. we not only lend people money, we help them save it. [ junior ] ge engineers found ways to cut my energy use.
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[ cheryl ] more efficient lighting helps junior stay open later... [ junior ] and serve more customers. so you're not just getting financial capital... [ cheryl ] you're also getting human capital. not just money. knowledge. [ junior ] ge capital. they're not just bankers... we're builders. [ junior ] ...and they've helped build my business. we're builders. you know, those farmers, those foragers, those fishermen.... for me, it's really about building this extraordinary community. american express is passionate about the same thing. they're one of those partners that i would really rely on whether it's finding new customers, or, a new location for my next restaurant. when we all come together, my restaurants, my partners, and the community amazing things happen. to me, that's the membership effect.
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mitt romney, man from mars has struck again. >> i'm not sure about these cookies. they don't look like you made
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them. did you make those cookies? no, no, they came from the local seven-eleven bakery or wherever. >> that was mitt man from mars reaction on tuesday near pittsburgh. he was there doing, you know, what we all do whenever our hosts present us with snacks or food of any kind. he immediately insulted their offering. on what planet is that an acceptable practice? joining me now, the insulted baker who baked those cookies, john walsh, owner of bethel bakery in bethel park, pennsylvania. john, i've read the tweets and the facebook postings saying things like there is no cookie or cake more delicious than yours. so i am taking it for granted that these are absolutely fabulous baked products that were on that table. how shocked were you when you heard this presidential candidate say this?
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>> i couldn't believe it. i was shocked. i just was dumbfounded. because we were all excited that he was coming to town and made sure got the cookies, got up there, and, you know, i'm sure they were well-received by all the guests, but we were definitely surprised -- >> and john, you're a republican, a small businessman. he's talking about you in every one of his speeches he's reading in that teleprompter. he's celebrating you, the hero, the small businessman. what do you make of how sincere that talk sounds to you now? >> well, i think that the comment he made was really a simple naive an icebreaker. >> but, john, in what place in the world do you break the ice by insulting what has been presented to you by your host? that's the part i don't get.
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i have never heard of anyone doing that. >> well, certainly he was -- made a mistake. and we would like to have him come back so he can really have the best taste of bethel bakery again. >> would you make him something special if he came back? >> oh, absolutely. any size. any shape. >> what happens -- >> covered with fondant or not -- we would love for him to come back. >> all right. john, thank you very much for joining us. we really appreciate it. and looks like great stuff behind you there at the bakery. >> we have had the customers coming in by the troves today in support of our cookie gate special. >> exactly the way to react. let's hope it's a boom for business. thank you very much for joining us tonight. and joining us now, john
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heilemann. john, it's this weird thing. the guy's trying to relate. he's trying to say the thing that will ingratiate himself to these people and insults what they've put in front of you. >> i wanted to bring you in a box, but my local bakery was closed so i couldn't do that. he is not comfortable in many cases around human beings. that's a little bit -- >> that's a problem. >> it's a small problem. >> and that's what's in this poll saying he's got a 20-point gap on likability. we're seeing this in real poll numbers. >> it's a problem for him. there's -- and if this was one thing, who would care? really, frankly, you know, it's a mistake. but he's made mistakes like this over and over again, especially when you get him in a small setting with ordinary folks. but, you know -- >> rich guys bet $10,000, i get that context. this thing is really weird to me.
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who says this kind of thing? >> someone who doesn't understand -- >> explain him to me. >> someone who clearly has not internalized the fundamental law of politics and food -- >> basic human politeness. >> look, you get handed a lot of bad food and a lot of local food. handed a lot of food on the campaign trail. the fundamental rule of politics about food is everything you eat is wonderful, it's great, it's fabulous, it's delightful. you might not eat a lot of it, but you love it. you can't ever disthe food that someone hands you because you don't know where it came from. >> it could have been baked by those people. he doesn't know anything about baked goods because that was the good stuff. >> and maybe this is why mitt romney's so trim because he p didn't partake in those


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