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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  September 11, 2012 2:00am-3:00am EDT

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they're in the business of making these deals work and they only have to work for the private equity firm and their investors. they don't have to work for the company that gets taken over. >> matt taibbi. >> thank you. >> you can hear more from matt on our website at the very last word. sweet and sour politics. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews from washington. let me start with this tonight, you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink. you can lead a party to tampa but you can't make them like them. talk about a loveless marriage, this thick in tampa had the look
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of a shotgun marriage. is that any reason to make some guy president of the united states? is it. there's a reason obama got a bounce and romney did a thud. one guy people really love in charlotte giving the speeches of their lives, bill and michelle and deval patrick and castro. remember what romney got? chris christie up there giving testimonials to themselves. they barely got around to paying for their supper they were so full of themselves. romney has had two chippies, going over to get acquainted with the brits and going to tampa to get the kudos. in both cases he ended up laying more eggs than the easter bunny but people like the easter bunny. joining me is howard fineman and jim vandehei. it seems to me what happened the last two weeks was patently obvious. within convention worked, one didn't. one was sweet, one was sour. one you felt the vibes of happiness. the other one was you felt something but it was usually
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hatred of the president. >> yeah. well, chris, i spent every evening on the floor of the convention at both conventions, and at the republican convention there was a dutiful feel to it, and as you said, a lot of the speakers were speaking for themselves and speaking in a sort of dark and gloomy foreboding tone. that was the tone that chris christie took. mitt romney was respected, i think, even admired, but not loved. at the democratic convention, it was the opposite story. people there loved barack obama, and that transmitted itself and people were dedicated to his election such as bill clinton, a former enemy in a way, who is now working very hard, and as you always say, the person likely to win, the candidate likely to win is the one with the sun in his face. in this case the democratic convention had the sun in its face and the republican one didn't, and i think that carries forth. people get a message from that. >> look at these numbers. we are starting to see new numbers. a new cnn/opinion research roll has a six-point lead. 52%, 46%. that poll was tied, 48% before the democratic convention. the gallup daily tracking poll which is a week long average of voter opinions shows obama up by five outside the margin of
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errors, 49%, 44%. that first one impresses me more than the second one. when you start getting over 50% it looks real to me. your thoughts, jim, studying this. >> there's no doubt obama got a >> there's no doubt obama got a bump out of this and no doubt also that romney's camp is disappointed in the lack of bump they got out of their own convention. i don't totally agree with the two of you on your assessment of the republican convention. i thought there was authentic excitement for ryan. i thought romney's speech was well-received. he always have to work with things within the parameters of what are they capable of. by that measurement i thought he had a decent speech, but the problem was democrats went second and democrats had a successful convention. i don't know that obama's speech was the best he'll ever give but clinton's speech was very, very well-received, and i think a lot of the other speeches captured a spirit of excitement at the democratic convention you just
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didn't feel at the republican convention. and that seems to have had a psychological tilt -- >> let jim talk for a second. >> i think though when you said that people were excited about paul ryan's speech and were respectful about romney's, i think that's the point. >> i think it's fair. i think romney beat the spread. i think he was better than he usually is. of course, at msnbc we had a tremendous number of people there, a very diverse crowd around our sort of setup down there, our stage. i obviously am getting the most intense people down there, but from the first moment i got down into that area where all the people were at the convention, i felt a very different feeling than i got in the other convention just watching people smile. their faces were smiling. at the other convention, maybe it was the weather, it was so hot and sticky down in tampa, how did you register? what was your method as a reporter in registering the mood of these two conventions, jim? >> well, i thought the mood wasn't terrible.
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you know, again, there's a lot of talent in the republican party beneath mitt romney that gets republicans excited. what was curious was that the delegates, even on the speeches that they really liked, weren't that thunderous in their response. i mean, i think the republican party should require in all of their delegates the next time they come to the convention some kind of pledge they will get up and hoot and holler because the optics help when the public -- >> you were great with chris christie who blamed the audience for the lack of excitement. >> i blame chris christie for his speech. >> i agree. >> i was waiting for him to say to the moon, alice. >> part of it is also that republicans generally speaking, i don't want to generalize too much, republicans are a little less raucous overall. >> but they get there on time. they're very organized people. >> they sit in the proper chairs. >> joe scarborough had it right when he talked about the loveless marriage between conservatives. their feeling towards romney. let's watch. >> you're from florida obviously.
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why do you think romney's doing so poorly in florida? >> he's just a flawed candidate. the romney people think they can run a bob dole campaign and john mccain campaign, a gerald ford campaign and win. that doesn't happen. republicans do not win by running these types of campaigns. for those idiots out there saying i'm a rhino or i'm not a conservative because i'm actually telling them we will lose if you don't start running as a conservative. if you don't start telling people what you believe -- if you really do, in fact, believe in anything. >> you know, i think joe scarborough is sort of a mainstream conservative. moves to the center there pretty often or over to the other side occasionally. i'm looking at that situation there. is this convention suffering from a lack of ideological zeal because the candidate himself for president isn't a ryan? >> i think there's a huge problem here for the republicans in that when you want to beat an incumbent you have to do two things. you have to convince voters it's
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time to change, that there needs to be a change. i think that they've kind of accomplished that. voters seem very open to a different president. then you have to make the affirmative case for you being a better president and that's why, not just scarborough and bill crystal, but a lot of republicans are very frustrated. they thought when paul ryan was put on the ticket, now we're going to engage in a specific fight about medicare and budget priorities, and tax reform. instead they reverted to the old romney formula, which is try -- >> did you see him yesterday? yesterday was a great example on "meet the press." david gregory of nbc gave him a great opportunity to lay out what he meant by tax reform, what are you going to try to get rid of? he wouldn't mention a thing. >> mitt romney's just not a great candidate as a personality and as a biography and that's been said over and over. the other is the specificity point. and the people closest to mitt romney who i know and i talk to believe that making the case against the president is still their number one priority and their best opportunity -- >> it's a negative campaign. >> they came up with this phrase which they got from margaret
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thatcher, thatcher's phrase when she ran in britain was labor isn't working. their phrase here is obama isn't working. not only does it quite not make sense on a personal level, it's not enough to wane the campaign, and what they've done is that they've -- as jim said, they brought in the guy with the ideas and the specificity and told him to shut up. >> yeah. >> i predict eventually that paul ryan is going to chafe -- >> i think republicans in the end are going to turn and say, wait a minute, i really had a problem with obama. now i meet this guy. i may have to stick with obama. i think -- wherever you go, that's where you're going to be. i'm not sure everybody wants to be with romney. we'll see. to try to prevent the right wing herd from being spooked, the romney campaign released a memo saying don't get too worked up about the latest polling. while some voters will feel a bit of a sugar high from the conventions, the basic structure
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of the race has not changed significantly. the reality of the obama economy will reassert itself as the ultimate downfall of the obama presidency and mitt romney will win this race. that's a good solid argument even though it sounds a bit like chris christie condemning the applause meter. let me ask you this, jim. i think still the box this campaign came in is marked romney. i mean, all the conditions say change, but the campaign itself and the people, the candidates themselves i think is still marked obama. and this is an interesting conflict. >> yeah, i basically agree with that memo that there's some bit of a sugar high built into these polls, but it's not -- when they say don't get worked up, i can tell from you reporting that the romney people are a little worked up. they look at those poll numbers. they don't care about the national poll number. they do care about their internals in ohio showing them down five to eight points. that's ohio. show me a way to win the presidency without winning ohio. it's really, really hard. and so those numbers are troubling to them, and they are right, it is about the economy, and if you look at that last
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jobs report on friday, it's bad news for the president. very hard to spin that that was good news for this white house. the problem is they've been living with that for three, four months. it doesn't seem to be enough. there has to be what's the next step. >> i think people have discounted that. in ohio, you're right, a new ppp poll has the president increasing his margin over mitt romney. jim, he's up by five points. i love when everybody gets to 50. you know, howard -- >> there are two reasons to that in my understanding. one of them is the auto industry positive news the president has been able to sell for the bailout. the other according to frank once, a republican media strategist, is an independent ad they did talking how the workers at a plant built the stage for an announcement which turned out to be the announcement for the closing of the plant. the worker says it turns out we built our own coffin.
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that's run repeatedly in ohio and according to frank, that ad alone has killed mitt romney in ohio. >> let me ask you about the next chance we look ahead here. everybody is going -- i think everybody watching this show will be watching the debate, the big debate october 3rd between the president and governor romney. that is -- everybody in the business of watching politics says that's the key event, that first hour even of that hour and a half debate. is that your look at the way this thing could turn and take another turn in another direction or double down for obama either way? >> it seems to be the only other big turn outside of an event we can't fathom right now sitting here chewing over the campaign. this will be the next time where a bunch of people tune in and they want to see whether or not mitt romney measures up to the president. i will say if you look at mitt romney's debate performances early on as a candidate and in the primary, he can be a very effective debater. it would not surprise me if he outperformed the president in that first debate. remember, the president is there, it's the first time in four years that someone really gets in his face and challenges him sort of in the same room. he doesn't have that.
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and so that would be a chance to turn it, but he really has to be able to convince people that he has something specific that would be superior. i don't think he has to say i'm exponentially better than the president as an alternative. he has to say at least i'm marginally better and a safer bet. >> and also the format is interesting because even though it's only one moderator, jim lehrer and so forth, there's going to be a lot of room after the first two minutes back and forth for the moderator to guide like a 10 or 11 minute discussion of each of six topics. people haven't looked at that yet. that's unstructured territory which no politician likes, and if romney can take advantage of that, it could help him. >> one thing i have learned from military history and debating history, the best position to be in is to attack from a defensive position. when the other guy throws the sunday punch, that's when he's vulnerable. he's sitting there with his self-satisfied look and that's when you put him away. you wait for the other guy to take his sunday punch and you put him away with there you go again or something like that
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because the public always roots for the candidate who has just been hit hard. they always root for him. you get up off the floor, they love you, root for you. if obama goes into this first debate ahead substantially, it will be romney who is going to have to throw the sunday punch and god help him. anybody that throws that punch better be ready to defend themselves with that the surrebuttal. thank you. great having you on. did you catch mitt romney yesterday on "meet the press"? he says he wants to keep kids and parents health insurance and make sure people with pre-existing conditions -- he wants everything obama is offering but it won't cost you a penny. this is great. this is perfect. he's going to give you everything obama does but it won't really be a program. it's interesting how he's promising. fdr warned about this stuff, so next get the specifics. neither romney or ryan have come up with a specific reduction. not one. they don't want to tell you anything. they may get rid of charitable, the home mortgage deduction, they may get rid of state and local tax reduction. look out, nobody is safe. okay, now we're 57 days from the
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2012 election. so what's ahead for hillary clinton in 2016? we're going to get to that sugar plum. the question we all have, where is it going for the secretary of state? that's one of the great political questions of our time. anyway, let's finish tonight with what do you do when nobody likes you? what do you do if you're mitt romney. this is "hardball," the place for politics. those little thi s still get you. for you, life's about her. but your erectile dysfunction - that could be a question of blood flow. cialis tadalafil for daily use helps you be ready anytime the moment's right. you can be more confident in your ability to be ready. and the same cialis is the only daily ed tablet approved to treat ed and symptoms of bph, like needing to go frequently or urgently. tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medications, and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sexual activity. do not take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. do not drink alcohol in excess with cialis. side effects may include headache, upset stomach, delayed backache or muscle ache. to avoid long-term injury,
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seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than four hours. if you have any sudden decrease or loss in hearing or vision, 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. some new poll numbers to bring you. let's take the "hardball" scoreboard. in the democratic convention state of north carolina, the new ppp poll has president obama leading now. romney 49%/48%. very close there. in new mexico, president obama has a five-point lead now. 45%/40% with gary johnson running as a libertarian. that's dangerous. that's according to a new poll from "the albuquerque journal." we'll be right back.
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back to "hardball." when he campaigned for re-election in 1936, franklin delano roosevelt made an argument that's just as true today as it was then. catch these words. let's listen together. >> let me warn you and let me warn the nation against the smooth evasion that says, of course we believe these things, we believe in social security. we believe in work for the unemployed. we believe in saving homes. cross our hearts and hope to die, we believe in all these things. but we do not like the way the present administration is doing them. just turn them over to us. we will do all of them. we will do more of them.
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we will do them better, and most important of all, the doing of them will not cost anybody anything. >> so there you have it. the great fdr, the greatest orator of the 20th century saying the republicans always promise everything you have just done for them even though they haven't done it themselves and they promise to do it for you for nothing basically. here on "meet the press" i was reminded of that great quote because mitt romney said there were some good parts of obama's health care plan despite the fact romney has been criticizing it relentlessly for two years. let's listen to how he said i will give you all the goodies in it but it won't cost you a thing. >> i'm not getting rid of all of health care reform, of course. there are a number of things i like in health care reform i'm going to put in place. one is to make sure those with pre-existing conditions can get coverage. who is to assure that the marketplace allows for
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individuals that have policies that cover their family you have to whatever age they might like. >> not long after that, romney campaign aides were clarifying the statement saying what he really meant was people who maintain continuous insurance coverage can't be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition, and that's an awful long way to go to defend what romney said on "meet the press." bob shrum democratic strategist and columnist for the daily beast, john, a republican strategist. he basically said i'm going to give you everything obama is going to give you, but then it turns out his aides come out and say actually not because how can you give away all of this stuff if you don't have an employee mandate. >> i don't understand what the romney campaign is doing. he's the nominee. he gets on and says this. why don't they stick by it. they changed his position in less time than it takes for the halftime of the nfl. what it tells you is he's the nominee of the republican party but he's hostage to the tea party. ronald reagan was mr. conservative. he was also pragmatic.
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so he had the base, the base trusted him. he could do a deal with your boss tip o'neill to save social security. he could do a deal with my boss ted kennedy to pass immigration reform. people would grumble on the right but they were with reagan. the romney people act like they're scared of their shadows. if he says anything off the playbook they immediately retreat. >> how do you provide all the good things, the benefits in obama care, they don't mind that word anymore, like covering people with pre-existing conditions, having your adult kids in their 20s covered which all costs money, without having an individual mandate. >> republicans have all stated continuously throughout the year that if we did repeal obama care, we would pass a law that included pre-existing conditions and i think this new thing that romney is talking about up to 25 years old. there's -- the law you can pass, it does not include -- you can have all kinds of ways to do this.
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you can have risk pools. you can have mandate on insurance companies which is something that is easily -- >> where does the money come from? >> there's not a cost to have the mandate. you can do that. >> i try to get insurance -- no insurance -- >> this is why the romney campaign said you have to have continuous coverage or what romney said on the campaign trail, you have to have insurance before hand. >> that's not what obama is offering. obama is offering coverage if you don't have insurance. >> well -- >> if you go pay for it. >> the idea what mitt romney believes is that the free market, the marketplace, can help cure this problem by having risk pools -- >> wait a minute, what does it mean to say you can't be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition if you already have coverage? all that can mean is you can't get canceled -- >> can i talk common sense? if you're a 50-year-old person or 60-year-old person, bad
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health sort of kicks in when you get older. we know that. young people are riding around on motorcycles having a good time, smoking cigarettes. once you get in your 40s and if i was you realize you're not going to live forever and your spouse realizes it. he or she is scared to death their spouse has a disease. it can be a heart condition, it could be a cancerous condition. it could be diabetes. all kinds of diseases out there. and you've bn out of work for six months that means you can never get insurance again? that's what people are petrified of in the real world and romney is not going to take care of them. >> romney will take care of them. if you look -- >> he said on "meet the press" -- >> if you look at what he did in massachusetts, you're looking at obama care. >> i want to she what you he said on jay leno. back in march, i don't know what leno's politics are but he asked a good question. leno asking clear common sense questions and i think he boxed in romney on this pre-existing condition thing. you're trying to defend him. watch your candidate try to defend himself on leno. >> people with pre-existing conditions, as long as they've been insured before, they're going to be able to continue to have insurance. >> suppose they were never insured? >> if they were 45 years old and
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they say i want insurance because i have heart disease, hey, guys, we can't play the game like that. you have to get insurance when you're well and if you get ill, you're doing to be covered. >> yeah, but a lot of people -- i only mention this because i know guys that work in the auto industry and they're not covered because they're working brake dust and they haven't been able to get insurance. they get to be 30, 35, they were never able to get insurance before, now they have it. that seems like a good thing. >> we'll look at a circumstance for someone who is ill and hasn't been insured so far but people who have a chance to be insured, you look at the circumstances that exist but people who have done their best to get insured, will be able to get covered. >> these who have done their best. those who have insurance will get insurance. those who don't have insurance, you can't play the game like that. we can't play the game -- the guy has a heart condition and he's saying you can't play the game like that. that's why people think that guy is cold. that's an amazing -- he says if you think you can play the game like that. the guy has a heart condition. >> but there is a problem with people deciding not to get health care until they get sick,
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and that is a -- >> sure. that's why we have the individual mandate. that's why the government said you have to -- >> do you know what obama stands for? it means everybody from the time they're working starts paying into something to the extent of their ability so when they have these conditions, they're covered. it's what all republicans always -- >> government-run health care. >> no, it's not. >> individual mandate -- >> it's all -- >> john, john, that's the talking point. this is not government-run health care. it's actually based on romney care and it's based on the plan the republicans themselves introduced -- >> you have to buy insurance from insurance companies. that's what obama care is. we'll help you pay for it. >> the problem is this is a difficult problem. there's no doubt about that the idea of an individual mandate is unpopular with voters. it's also a difficulty you have to deal with pre-existing conditions.
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the fact of the matter is it's a hard problem to solve -- >> you know what i like about -- you smile when you lose. thank you, john, you lost. this thing he said on jay leno, if the democrats don't play that over and over again, the guy can't get coverage because he has a heart -- >> great piece of tape. >> by the way, this wasn't exactly edward r. murrow asking a question. this is a regular guy, a smart guy, it wasn't a grilling. jay did a lot of better job than a lot of people i know. thank you, bob shrum. thank you -- not as good as me. up next, what's the story behind the picture of president obama being lifted off his feet? this is a funny -- there it is. look at this guy. talk about chutzpah picking up the president. this is "hardball," the place for politics. ♪ [ male announcer ] it seems like every company
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back to "hardball" and now a lot of people i know. for politics.
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back to "hardball" and now to "the side show." first up president obama stopped at a pizzeria in florida yesterday to commend the owner in his work encouraging more people to donate blood. when the president shouted out a compliment about the man's biceps, things got interesting. >> look at those guns. if i buy your pizza, will i look like that? >> i don't think anybody would do that to romney. the store owner is a republican though he voted for obama in '08 and plans to do so again in november. now that the president and first lady have been swept off their feet, remember when michelle obama was hoisted up by a member of the u.s. olympic wrestling team. steve king scored an endorsement from mitt romney on friday. steve king, the iowa republican who thinks president obama's birth announcement could have been telegraphed from kenya to hawaii. the dnc is out with a new ad highlighting a few of king's disgusting positions. >> i'm looking here at steve
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king. this man needs to be your congressman again. i want him as my partner in washington, d.c. >> congressman king says he's not aware of any young victims like that. >> i haven't heard of that being a circumstance. when i go down there and sit on the border, i come to this conclusion. we can't shut this off unless we build a fence and a wall. we can also electrify this wire with the kind of current that wouldn't kill somebody. we do that with livestock all the time. >> i'm looking at steve king, this man needs to be your congressman. he want him as my partner in washington, d.c. >> as jack kennedy said, sometimes party loyalty asks too much. somehow i don't think that's a bromance between mitt romney and that guy. they're not going to be touting that much. chris christie is slated to hit the campaign trail for steve king. more from the realm of crazy. joe walsh, another birther, a tea partier with a another town
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hall. the subject, the recent law school graduate to spoke up about birth control. here is the rebuttal from mr. walsh. >> so at the democratic convention wednesday night first prime time speech was sandra fluke, whatever her name is. 30, 31, 32-year-old law student who gets up there in front of the national audience and tells the american people, i want america to pay for my contraception. they're kidding me. go get a job. go get a job, sandra. >> why does he have to be irish? graduating from a prestigious law school in your early 30s makes you a student for life. walsh might be out of a job himself when voters hit the polls this over. up next, you think mitt
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romney would be ready for the question about what tax deductions he'd eliminate to pay for his big tax cut plan. yesterday on "meet the press" he wasn't ready. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics.
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back to "hardball." mitt romney has a math problem,
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the dirty secret is romney will have to eliminate deductions for the middle class. they will be cutting taxes while the wealthy get a massive break. congressman rand, this word loophole causes trouble with me. what they're talking about for the average person working out there, loopholes, how about your homeowner mortgage deductions which everybody lives for. it's the only charity you get. charitable deductions. what are the churches going to do when they're told no more write-off. talking about being anti-religious. if romney gets his way and cuts charitable deductions, these churches will close. look at this. charity -- the other one is state and local. you don't have any choice. you got to pay state and local tax. so the three biggest ones are mortgages, state and local, and charitable. they're the major deductions of
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our lives and they're talking about getting rid of them so the rich can go from 38% to 25%. your thought. >> you're absolutely right. that's the game plan, blame obama, promise everything, and avoid specifics. and i guess stay off "hardball" and assume we're all dummies and are going to buy it. it's just impossible. you can't cut taxes by $5 trillion over the next decade, spend $2 trillion more on defense than is budgeted, and then think no one is going to have to cover it. and you're not going to increase the deficit. of course you're going to increase the deficit. it's far worse than anything that the reagan administration did when they quadrupled the deficit. it's worse than what george w. bush did when he cut -- when he had two deep tax cuts, started two wars, and then expanded medicare. that's why we're in the situation we're in. but what romney is trying to do is double down. he's promising even more tax cuts and we're going to pay less. it's incredible what he thinks -- how gullible he must think we are.
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>> i don't know why the democrats have such a problem. you're better off than you were four years ago? are you better that you have than you were under bush? think it through. wars, financial crisis like we've never had since the great depression. a stock market dropping down to nothing. an unemployment rate spiking up to double digits. why is it such a complicated question? go back to this policy. >> go back to december 2008 when we were losing 850,000 jobs a month. i mean, making -- creating 96,000 jobs is not enough, but it's certainly better -- >> let's -- i want to get to him first because you will be surprised what he says. here is conservative columnist doing a job explaining what's wrong with romney's proposal. let's listen to will on romney. >> this uncertainty surrounding the romney/ryan tax cut plan because they have not specified the deductions that will be closed, and we know where the big money is. mortgage interest deductions, charitable deductions, taxing as
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compensation which it is, i mean, making -- creating 96,000 jobs is not enough, but it's certainly better -- >> let's -- i want to get to him first because you will be surprised what he says. here is conservative columnist doing a job explaining what's wrong with romney's proposal. let's listen to will on romney. >> this uncertainty surrounding the romney/ryan tax cut plan because they have not specified the deductions that will be closed, and we know where the big money is. mortgage deduction, and state and local are what hit stinking details is the message to the public. i think this creates a real big opening and you saw what david gregory was able to do to him or
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what jay leno does in talking about earlier in the show. barack obama will have a wide opening on the debate to say, mitt, if you can give us magic ponies, please tell us how it's going to happen. >> congressman rand, you live in northern virginia, you represent that area. what are people saying about romney? do they get this complication here that he's sort of hiding behind, i'm not telling what you i'm going to do? >> i hope they understand it. i hope they watch shows like yours, chris, but the problem is they're being besieged with these 15 to 30-second ads, and, of course, they also avoid specifics. that's what we're into. we're into all these promises, these vague generalities. we only have ourselves to blame if we let them get away with it. i'm hoping in the debates they will be nailed down, that they have to get specific. because, you know, neither party has really come to grips with what you'd have to do to really reduce the deficit, but you can't reduce revenue by another $5 trillion, increase spending by another $2 trillion, and then not touch the big tax expenditures. for example, you could say $1 trillion over a decade if you eliminate mortgage interest deductions.
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you could save $1 trillion if you eliminated investment income. that would apply directly to people like mitt romney who are paying less than half their taxes because their taxed on unearned income which is the less than half -- earned income -- >> they don't want to touch that. >> of course not. and then charitable deductions, which is $53 billion a year. that would be half a trillion over a decade. you can show how it would work, but if you do that, it's clear he has no intention of taking that on. congress would never consider eliminating all those deductions. >> we have to get to hillary now. it's going to get as exciting as it's ever been in our lives. jim is a big hillary person. >> nobody has ever been better qualified than maybe george washington to be president of
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the united states. >> i know. >> a chance to make sure he's on the bandwagon in 2016. thank you guys. up next, why is bill clinton pushing president obama so hard? could it be possibly four years from now he could be back living upstairs in the white house as first spouse? what are hillary chances? i think he's bullish on the economy and i think he thinks it's going to be good. he wants obama to win. this is "hardball," the place for politics.
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the great political reporter dan balz of the "washington post" has hit a major milestone. he's been on a-1, the front page of "the post," for 1,500 times. "the post" honored balz after his front page story on the closing night of the democratic convention. for his first time on the front page back in 1979 with a story about a grain deal with the soviets. we'll be right back.
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although we weren't able to shatter that highest, hardest ceiling this time, thanks to you, it's got about 18 million cracks in it. >> we're back with hillary clinton at the time back in 2008
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giving a great speech i thought on the day she announced the end of her campaign for the presidency. the question on everyone's mind or a lot of political junkies' minds now is if the chance to put that final crack in the glass ceiling will prove too tempting. will she run in 2016? fred burney had this to say yesterday. will she run in 2016? i can't tell you how many times i heard that question. it was a strong belief she's considering one last bid and a wish that the hillary clinton saga not yet to be over because it's as riveting as any in the last quarter century. with me now are two political analysts joan walsh and former congressman harold ford jr. thank you very much, congressman and thank you joan. ifhis were the democratic party, she would be guaranteed this slot because they have a rule over there. it's her turn. your thoughts? >> i don't think it's her turn particularly.
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i think one of the problems with her candidacy in 2008 is that there was a little bit of a sense of entitlement. a sense of the clinton restoration and she didn't run it as an insurgency of the american people. she became a better candidate when she became the underdog. the first part of the campaign when it was hers to lose, well she lost it. >> she was dynamite in new hampshire. >> she was dynamite in new hampshire and after new hampshire. she really tore through those primaries on fire. and really made her case. i would never want her to go into it in 2016 with a sense of entitlement. the american people want to be asked for their vote. >> i agree with you. everything you said, with one thing. she voted for the war in iraq. maybe she did it for political reasons. your thoughts, congressman? she will be much better in a general election where there's a clear field without obama running against her. no heavy weights to challenge her. she has a better opportunity to come across as the true democratic champion.
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your thoughts? >> she emerges after this election win or lose by president obama, and he will win, as the front runner not only on the democratic side but even on the republican side. there's a real hunger in the country as we sit here this evening for someone who understands politics, who loves politics and knows how to deliver by using the levers in politics. she's proven that. she stood above politics by accepting the role of secretary of state in the face of what was a tough primary, contested primary between her and senator obama. and here we are four years later with her husband reminding us less than a week ago why the clintons are so important and why they are so important to american politics. >> i think people have stopped talking about her hair and that cosmetics. it's kind of boring after awhile.
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you know what i think is a great question, if obama were to lose this november, by december, people would be crazed for who is going to run. she would have to make a quick decision. if he wins, she gets at least a year to get in shape again, mentally, physically, get off the plane for awhile. get back to being herself again. then she can think through not only whether to run or not. >> she's helped by him winning, and i believe she's going to win. she gets to take her time and relax and see what the lay of the land is. if god forbid he were to lose, there would be a mad scramble. there would be people she make up her mind. there would be money trying to make decisions. so we're all served by him winning and she's served too. >> i got to get a money question out. you're up there with the financial big shots. you hang with that crowd now. let me ask you a question. are we going to have a good four years economically no matter who
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wins or not? if i were bill clinton, i would say make sure a democrat is in office if they are going to be good four years. if they are going to be bad four years, let the republican take the heat. then my wife can win. but if you think it's going to be bullish, you want to keep obama in there and take credit and have her come in on the the crest of that. >> i think president clinton, i take him at his word. i know he wants president obama reelected. he believes this is an election a choice between whether you believe we're in this together or you're on your own. we're working towards that. >> i know you're going to say that. but let me ask a political question. if the president, if the former president believes the economy is going to be good, he will definitely want obama to be president because you get credit
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as a party for good times. >> president clinton believes in order to make things good, you have to have the right president. if we don't address the fiscal cliff right. if we don't make inhumane choices. it would hurt any democrat. the reason the clintons are so valuable and why mrs. clinton's name continues to surface is there's a genuine belief that they care and understand and can get things done. >> i think you're right as far as you go. thank you very much, joan and congressman. when we return, let me finish with the loveless american republicans find themselves stuck in with mitt romney. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. let me finish tonight with this. what do you do when people don't like you? you make it not matter.
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let me finish tonight with this. what do you do when people don't like you? you make it not matter. look how mitt romney got this nomination. he simply used his tens of millions of dollars bombing him out of the alternatives. result? romney is the nominee to run against the president. before so, he's doing is get. can't get minority to votes? keep them from voting. set up barricades to keep them from the voting booths. require photo i.d. cards. spread the word through the neighborhoods this isn't going to be easy. stay home. better idea? get the people to hate other guy with talk of welfare give aways and how the medicare is being sucked.