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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  September 23, 2012 3:00pm-3:59pm EDT

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good sunday afternoon, you're watching msnbc. the place for politics, 44 days now until election day and while the national polls show that candidates virtually next and neck, the man running president obama's re-election campaign said it could all come down to these eight states. this afternoon, we are going to focus in on the two states. wisconsin and colorado. where the race is especially critical for the campaigns. first, topping our political headlines, new numbers out of a different swing state, florida. showing a very tight race there, tampa bay "times"/"miami herald" poll shows one point separates
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president obama and mitt romney. that of course, within the poll's margin of error. meanwhile, former president bill clinton making news today. declining to rule out whether his wife, secretary of state hillary clinton will be making a bid for the white house in 2016. >> i just don't know. she's an extraordinarily able person. i never met anybody i thought was a better public servant. but i have no earthly idea what she'll decide to do. >> president obama, president obama back in washington today after a pair of campaign events in wisconsin, saturday, at a fundraiser, the president criticizing mitt romney for describing 47% of americans as victims this morning on nbc's "meet the press," senator kelly ayotte, republican from new hampshire, pushed back. >> that certainly was a political analysis at a fundraiser, but it's not a governing philosophy. he absolutely has a vision for
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100% of america. and that's very different from this president. >> more on all of these stories in our next two hours. sunday afternoon here we are, no one probably happier to see a new week begin than mitt romney. he's got a targeted itinerary of campaign sweeps, speeches and swing states this coming week, nbc campaign embed, derrick hick in los angeles with the candidate, about to board a plane for colorado so he's joining us by phone. garrett, i understand mr. rot romney spent the earlier part of the day in debate prep. what can you tell us about that? >> that's correct. governor romney's arrived here only last night but they flew in a batch of senior staff, top advisers and also senator rob portman of ohio, who is playing president obama in governor romney's debate prep showing up in the hotel late last night. it's interesting to note when the campaign when you talk to official spokespeople, their official line on this is he's doing private meetings.
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they don't want to talk about debate prep. the last thing they want to do is raise expectations for their candidate. they want to make any ground he is able to gain on the president this he want to keep expectations low so anything he does on the stage looks better. >> one of the criticisms we've heard over the last couple of days specifically is that his running mate, paul ryan is not necessarily, doesn't have as big of a role as some campaign insiders would like to see. what's the campaign saying about that? >> well paul ryan himself actually pushed back yesterday, craig saying he was happy about his role. if you look at the public campaign schedule of both paul ryan and mitt romney. paul ryan is handling the vast majority of public events right now. just yesterday he was in florida along the space coast. he brought back a little bit of his personal type. he had a power point presentation to help describe some debt and entitlement issues, he seems to be quite in his element. the campaign is dismissive of that theory.
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>> garrett hague headed to the romney campaign. safe travels. a top obama campaign official is revealing new details about the strategy. leading up to election day. obama campaign manager jim mussina says despite seeing a tightening in the national polls, quote what i care way more about is ohio, colorado, virginia, wisconsin, et cetera. those states i feel the pathways to victory there. there are two different campaigns, one in the battlegrounds and one everywhere else. that's why the national polls aren't relevant to this campaign. that's jim mussina, obama campaign manager. to dig into that a mark murray, joining me the senior political adviser for nbc news. good sunday afternoon to you. a new poll out today in ohio showing mitt romney leading among white voters in that state while president obama leads with women. ohio of course the battleground of battleground states. a microcosm in many ways of the
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rest of the country as well. which camp should be more conservative about these numbers. >> the mitt romney campaign. and craig, the top-line numbers in that poll. president obama is leading 51% to 46%, a five-point lead, it's pretty consistent with all the polling we've seen out of ohio in the past couple of weeks, including our own nbc/"wall street journal"/marist poll that hayes president obama up by seven points among likely voters. so it's president obama at 50%, that's a good place for an incumbent to be. when you look the at the electoral math, that mitt romney needs to be able to win ohio, you probably know this very well and a lot of viewers know that no republican has ever won the white house. with not winning ohio. so ohio and those 18 electoral votes are incredibly important to mitt romney. >> in new report says romney's campaign intensifying the effort out there. a full screen from the "associated press," mitt
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romney's visit to colorado intensified schedule focused on the most competitive states. looking at the upcoming schedule, are you saying that? are you seeing an intensified campaign effort? >> absolutely. we were talking about ohio, look at the bus tour that both mitt romney and paul ryan will be taking in ohio. this is the campaign realizes they need to put their flag down there, campaign incredibly hard to be able to turn a race right now where president obama is at 50% in that state and other battleground states and try to come back to a tie. craig you were out inning in being in and barack obama faces an uphill challenge in that state. but mitt romney probably has a bigger challenge in ohio than barack obama has in north carolina that's telling you something right now. >> mark murray. nbc news senior political editor. always appreciate your insight, even on the weekends. we're now just ten days away from the first presidential
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debate. senior obama campaign adviser robert gibbs trying to tamp down expectations saying the president could be a bit rusty. >> mitt romney i think has an advantage because he's been through 20 of these debates in the primaries over the last year. he even bragged that he was declared the winner in 16 of those debates. so i think in that sense having been through this much more recently than president obama, i think he starts with an advantage. with me communications director for the obama campaign. brent, you heard robert gibbs saying mitt romney has an edge going into the first debate. a lot of us are wondering whether you guys are just trying to keep expectations low. but what, what is the campaign most concerned about. with regards to that first debate. >> sure, first of all, craig, thanks for having me this afternoon, i appreciate it the debates will be a big moment in the campaign. i think everyone appreciates that. as robert said this morning on fox, mitt romney has been out there doing this for two years
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now. he's done 20 of these debates in the primaries, he's putting a lot of time and practicing. he took the entire week of our convention, a week where we were out during their convention, talking to voters, was down doing debate prep. so obviously romney is using this as a big moment. putting a lot of chips on the table. doing everything they can to make sure that governor romney is prepared. i think we'll see a good discussion between him and president obama on the issues. >> what's the president's biggest weakness going into the first debate? >> well look debates are unpredictable. i think both sides will do what they have to do to be prepared. obviously they've put more time and effort in this. there's a report out that mitt romney did five debate preps or mock debates in a 48-hour period. so again i think you've seen the romney folks pushing to make sure their candidate is prepared as possible to try to change the narrative in this campaign. >> romney campaign has a new ad out today. want to take a list be and get your reaction. >> bob woodward, the "washington
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post" reporter who broke watergate recently wrote that during stimulus negotiations, president obama called his democratic leadership team, harry reid, nancy pelosi and as president obama spoke, nancy pelosi hit the mute button. if he cannot lead his own party, how can he lead america. >> should note that nancy pelosi has denied bob woodward's accounts. bob woodward one of the most respected reporters in the country. how significant is be a ad like that? >> first of all i would underscore that nancy pelosi has been out pushing back on the facts of the ad her words speak powerfully. the last thing that matters is that mitt romney hit the mute button on 47% of americans saying he didn't care about their vote. he didn't need them to win this election and sending a signal saying that as president, he wouldn't be out there fighting for them.
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we're going to keep going out talking to voters, we were in wisconsin yesterday, 18,000 people showed up in milwaukee in the rain. we'll keep on our message of economic growth and prosperity for the middle class. the romney campaign has their ad strategist talking about what's important. >> the president will be in new york monday and tuesday for the u.n. assembly. republicans have been questioning why he has no private meetings scheduled with foreign leaders. why not? >> anyone who has been around the national security team and state department knows we're in constant contact with leaders throughout the world. particularly in hot spots like the middle east. the praez will be at the u.n. general assembly. he's in constant contact with the people he needs to be in contact with. he has a strong foreign policy team. so we're going to keep moving forward and keep doing what we have to do to make sure on the international affairs front we stay on top of things and we're
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ready for whatever might come next. >> brent coalberg. barack obama communications director. coming up, the former governor of alaska has some advice for the current gop ticket, a mix of rebellion and religion. what spal sn saying now and later we'll look at how historic television moments can change the political landscape is an instant and how it may happen again this year. and the what's the third one there, let's see? >> the back story behind the flub heard round the world. that and more straight ahead. capella university understands businesses are trying to come back from rough economic times. employees are being forced to do more with less.
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right now mitt romney is preparing for a trip to colorado for tonight's rally in denver before launching a three-day bus tour through ohio. but some say the campaign is in need of new energy. a chance to recharge, a chance to reboot as well. that's something one outspoken republican has been calling for this weekend. here's what sarah palin wrote to the conservative magazine "the weekly standard." quote with, so much at stake in this election, both mitt romney and paul ryan should go rogue. and not hold back from telling the american people the true state of our economy, and national security. today on fox news sunday, wisconsin governor, scott walker, echoing that sentiment. >> i just like to see more of the enthusiasm that i saw when the two of them were together early on. i think that's what mitt romney believes in. think that's what will draw people to mitt romney. not only in my state but in states across the country.
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particularly battleground states and i think that's what's at stake here. >> live with me, erin mcmike, reporter for real clear politics and the executive editor for the national journal hotline. erin let me start with you. does the romney campaign need to take sarah palin's advice, do they need to go rogue? >> i don't know about going rogue. >> what does that mean? >> well sarah palin has not been very active in her defense of mitt romney. she really hasn't campaigned hard for him at all. she's been campaigning for congressional candidates instead. you remember in the republican primary, she was sort of endorsiendorse ing newt gingrich in south carolina and she didn't make a big splash. i think this is about sarah palin reestablishing herself within the republican party. >> you think this is about sarah palin? >> i think it's a lot -- listen,
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she hasn't been up front for mitt romney and now you see so many republicans saying mitt romney really needs to turn it on. she can join with the rest of the republicans and agree with them without looking like she's taking on mitt romney. >> josh you wrote something that caught my attention. you talked about romney leading in fundraising this summer now he's being outspent by the obama campaign, specifically in the battleground states. you say that the romney campaign is misallocating resources, how so? >> look, they have a huge fundraising advantage. but they're not getting a lot of bang for their buck. what's strike something while they're spending money in the big battleground states, it's the obama message that that has won out and push lot of the numbers into the obama states advantage. in iowa both campaigns have been spending a lot of money, one of the biggest battleground states out there and obama spent almost the entire month of august arguing his case, arguing the white house argument. arguing that the economy is on the right track.
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even though it's not in perfect shape. and romney's campaign and along with superpac money has been poured into the state as well. and what we saw is the romney advantage in iowa, a state that should have been slightly in his favor has turned into a solid obama advantage. so the message as much as the money that's pushed the numbers for obama. >> i want to talk about ohio for a second. you mentioned iowa, let's talk about ohio. you're from ohio? >> i am. >> is there a scenario where mitt romney could become the first candidate to win the white house without winning your state? or has it always been do or die for republicans? >> extremely unlikely for mitt romney to win without winning ohio. he would have to put pennsylvania back in play and we've seen them waver back and forth on whether or not they can play in pennsylvania. pennsylvania has two more electoral votes than ohio does. and he would have to do some hard campaigning in pennsylvania to put it back on the map. that's the only way he can lose ohio.
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>> josh, i want to call your attention to today's "new york times" article on ralph reed, the former head of the christian coalition, a long-time king maker in the gop until the jack abramoff scandal. what kind of impact could some effort like that have in ohio, specifically. >> it could be a very important part of the electorate. mitt romney needs a significant turn-out from evangelical voters in ohio. we know that evangelical voters for romney are important. he needs to win those by a significant margin. they need to show up and be enthused and tell their friends and colleagues to show up as
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well. it remains to be seen if romney can generate that enthusiasm among evangelicals. >> it's not just for "the today show," "meet the press," coming up -- ♪ ♪ arthritis pain. and two pills. afternoon's overhaul starts with more pain. more pills. triple checking hydraulics. the evening brings more pain. so, back to more pills. almost done, when... hang on. stan's doctor recommended aleve. it can keep pain away all day with fewer pills than tylenol. this is rudy. who switched to aleve. and two pills for a day free of pain. ♪ [ female announcer ] and try aleve for relief from tough headaches.
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>> if he's lucky, home school. >> "saturday night live's" kate mckinnon and bill hater having some fun there. the clip segues nicely into today's trail mix. more interesting health news about the texas governor who apparently suffers from insomnia. there's a new e-book. that says if viewers saw this book when he appeared to go blank during the republican presidential debate. >> it's three agencies of government when i get there that are gone. commerce, education, and the -- what's the third one there? let's see. >> i would do away with education, the -- commerce -- commerce -- and let's see -- i can't. the third one, i can't, sorry. oops. >> that's okay. governor. the book says that perry went
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virtually sleepless during much of his campaign which of course as you probably remember ended early in 2012. mitt romney making for a pricey event last night in l.a. about 1500 tickets were sold, ranging from $1,000, to $50,000. comedian dennis miller, producer david foster and actor gary sinese among the attendees. and you remember joe biden's great pumpkin we showed to you? a the giant squash got some first-class treatment. he it flown back to his home in d.c. in time for halloween. and who says the fourth estate ain't funky? remember this clip? that's "meet the press" moderator david gregory in the back along with al and safny and it looked like nat any more rals. showing off some moves. it doesn't end there, folks. the show also posted a picture on twitter about our man, david
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gregory doing a little preshow dance warmup in the studio this morning. check out the fist pump. check that out. the call of the day is from mitt romney to get on the trail and get more passion in his campaign. will that happen? and would it bring his poll numbers up? we're going into the war room straight ahead. >> kids like all kids love the dog. i want to say right now, regardless of what they say about it, we're going to keep it. we're going to keep it. >> that speech changed american politics forever. we flash back to checkers. coming up. [ male announcer ] when a major hospital wanted to provide better employee benefits while balancing the company's bottom line, their very first word was... [ to the tune of "lullaby and good night" ] ♪ af-lac ♪ aflac [ male announcer ] find out more at... [ duck ] aflac!
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here's a quick look at some of the stop stories making news. a top iranian commander says
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tehran will target u.s. bases if a war with israel breaks out. the u.s. military has a strong presence around the persian gulf. nine climbers are dead after an avalanche in nepal. at least six others are missing. and the man who jumped into a tiger's den at the bronx zoo is being charged with criminal trespassing. the 25-year-old is still recovering from bites and broken bones. investigators say this does not appear to be a suicide attempt. but rather an obsession with tigers. the clock is ticking in afghanistan where a troop surge has ended but the remaining 68,000 new american men and women on the ground are still counting down until full transfer in 2014. the plan is not without risks, for more we go live now to kabul and nbc's atia bowie.
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you have spent a great deal of time in the country and a lot of time talking to afghans on the ground there. what are the concerns that they're sharing with you about the looming withdrawal? >> hi, craig, there is is concern among afghans, especially in the big cities, including in the capital, kabul. many afghans who have seen gains in the last 12 years, including media, internet, jobs, especially women going to school, getting an education, going into the workforce, they're afraid of what the looming deadline at the end of 2014 means for their lives. don't know if it means there will be a civil war. they don't know if it means the taliban will come back. their anythingest concern is they feel that the international community will abandon them again. craig? >> is there a sense, and it sounds like there is, but is there a sense that once the u.s. and nato presence, once the presence shrinks dramatically that the region will also become the same haven for terrorists
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perhaps as it once was? >> absolutely. that's a big concern when it comes to not just afghans, but people who are analyzing the war in afghanistan. they're afraid that it will become another shadow for america and the international community once they withdraw. just as it become a shadow after the international community abandoned afghanistan after the soviet withdrawal that led toot civil war, that led to the taliban. that led to al qaeda, which then led to america's longest war. it seems that now there's more of an anti-american, anti-western sentiment here in afghanistan and many people fear if and when the u.s. and the international community withdraw completely, including combat forces and the civilian effort, which that may lead to. will that be another vacuum that will be filled by another insurgent group? maybe al qaeda, maybe someone else who hates america and the west just as much as the taliban and al qaeda did. craig? >> atia bawi, thank you so much
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for your reporting from there. back to politics now. time to play strategicist to the candidates. and you can't talk strategy without talking about the candidates' performance on the stump and what we have been hearing a lot of lately is a call for mitt romney to show more passion. we heard more of that this morning. take a listen, this is wisconsin governor scott walker and conservative columnistors david brooks. >> i want to see more passion, i want to see fire in the belly. i want to see him lit up and ready to go. that's the mitt romney i know. and if he does, i think he'll win this election. >> mitt romney does not have the passion for the stuff he's talking about. he's a problem-solver, i think he's a nonideological person running in an extremely ideological age and he's faking it. >> joining me now is a democratic pollster, and mitt romney surrogate and former press secretary for the rick santorum campaign, allison stewart. also with us, ladies, good
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afternoon to you. >> great to be here. >> how are you? >> i'm fine. allison, you're a romney surrogate. just heard david brooks there. is he right on this one? is part of mitt romney's problem that he is nonideological, but he's running this ideological race? >> david brooks is entitled to his opinion. but the truth is that governor romney has the passion to run the campaign and he has a chance to do it properly. his tax plan, providing skills that america needs to succeed. deficit reduction and making a fair, level and safe playing field. that's a plan that will as opposed to the -- >> you talked about mitt romney's passion. you talked about mitt romney's passion. and there are folks who said the same thing. but the fact of the matter is you don't see it i think what
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david brooks was getting at. part of the reason we don't see it and hear it is the fire is not in the belly. basically if he was a true believer. there would be no question about his passion. >> well, i've seen him out on the stump, he's very passionate and very fiery when he speaks. >> what stump have you seen him on? >> i've seen him speak on many occasions. most recently in little rock. i can assure you he's got the fire in the belly or he wouldn't be putting himself and his family through this. this is a very, very difficult job and it's stressful. as we heard from ann romney at the convention. when he sets his mind to something, he achieves it, he's not one known to fail when he sits his mind and heart to something. with the advent of paul ryan on the ticket we see great enthusiasm and great fire and passion on the stump. they've done a lot to re-energize the base and get group ace cross the country, groups concerned women for
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america, made over 725,000 calls. the most basic level of voter contact and reaching out to the people. >> has the in-fighting, the advice-giving among republicans, ha it affected the president's polling in what you're seeing? >> i think that the president does have passion. and he has pass for 100% of america, not just 53% of america. and that's what ire seeing reflected in the polls. you see the president's job approval. you see him ahead of romney or equal to him on the economy and jobs. you see him ahead by 18 points on being for the middle class. this president does have a passion. for getting all of america moving again. and that comes through every day in everything he does. part of the problem i think with mitt romney is there have been so many mitt romney's he can't remember which one he's supposed to be passionate about. >> give us a run-down of a few of the mitt romney's you speak of? >> the moderate mitt romney.
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the mitt romney the author of the origin of obama care. and then the mitt romney against obama care and you have the mitt romney who was moderate on choice and now you have the mitt romney who wants to be conservative on rape and now now you have the mitt romney who says we're going to privatize medicare and there have been so many different mitt romneys. >> do you think part of that goes back to what david brooks was talking about? do you think part of that is because mitt romney at his core is more pragmatic perhaps than he would like for some folks to believe. that he's a noni'd lodealogue t to run in an ideological race? >> i think he's had to be so many different people during this campaign i think he's lost his stride. i don't think he knows who he is any more. i don't think he can remember all the positions he himself has held. when you have a candidate that
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gets so far away from what they were, they lose track of themselves and i the voters can smell that kind of ina inauthenticity 100 miles away. >> want to address one point. what do we have in president obama. this election will be a reverend ounl this administration, he's failed to create policies that have made us better on an economic front. we've spent four or five days in charlotte at the democratic convention, touting their foreign policy experience and how successful he's been on the foreign policy front. and five days later, he -- here's the weakness in that area. >> no, that's not -- to draw the connection between the president's weakness on foreign policy and what happened in the middle east a few days later, that's disingenuous. >> yeah. >> they tried to blame it on the video we now know that the terrorist attack and it's due to the fact that this administration feels that strength is provocative. when in fact weakness is provocative.
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weakness on the foreign policy front makes us vulnerable in the eyes of the rest of the world. are our allies not to trust us and our enemies don't respect us. and there's no denying that fact. >> that's not true. this is a president who got osama bin laden. this is a president who has god willing. with the help of every american out there, 100% of americans, has kept another terrorist attack from our soil. this is a man who has stacked our troops and this is a man who has concluded and gotten us out of afghanistan and iraq. >> but let me jump in for a second. because alice, the accuracy of your statements not withstanding, the arguments that you just rolled offer, those are the same arguments that your party has been making for several months and poll after poll shows that the arguments don't seem to be resonating with voters. in fact a recent poll in florida points out my point, most
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accurately, the president, mitt romney now both seem to do the same in terms of handling the economy. the romney campaign known for having the leg up on that question. what do you make of that? >> the problem will be solved as we get into the debates. mitt romney will have the opportunity to outline the middle class plan to help create jobs. as opposed to what we have with president obama who has created unemployment above 8% for 43 months when he said he would cut the deficit in half. it's at $16 trillion and we're seeing the median household income has dropped and policies like obama care that will increase people's health care premiums as opposed to reducing it. and the gdp at 1.5%. these are policies that have failed to make american's lives better. when we see the sharp con trst coming up in the debates, people while have no doubt that mitt romney has the plan to get us out of the recession.
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>> do you think the debates will make the difference? >> they certainly will. >> i want to get one more question before we have to go. a lot folks have been saying that this campaign has been an extension test, the reach and impact of the superpacs here. as the election comes to a close, what do you make. impact of the super pacs so far? >> the super pacs have had a tremendous impact. everybody who has run, democratic or republican ought to be in favor of campaign republicans reform. this is where i agree with ann romney and alice. if you put yourself out settle for two years, you ought to be in charge of your message. and the kind of special interests that are trying to buy this election on both sides are wrong. we need campaign finance reform, it's rotting our system and we ought to be bipartisan agreement as we do with john mccain to get
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campaign finance reform. >> thank you so much for your time. we do appreciate it. >> thanks. >> for the next few days, nbc's rear-round initiative. education nation centered here at the new york city public library. a live look there on tuesday, both presidential candidates will be sharing their plans at the summit. their plans for reforming the nation's etd education system. first at 6:00 eastern tonight, msnbc's alex wagner, hosting a special panel about the role of parents and teachers. using a new film, "won't back down" as a backdrop. the parent/teacher association airing tonight here on msnbc. ocs copies of my acceptance speech. great! it's always good to have a backup plan, in case i get hit bya meteor. wow, your hair looks great. didn't realize they did photoshop here. hey, good call on those mugs. can't let 'em see what you're drinking. you know, i'm glad we're both running a nice, clean race.
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[ children laughing ] right now, she just dreams of an office. get a free trial at to compete on the global stage. what we need are people prepared for the careers of our new economy. by 2025 we could have 20 million jobs without enough college graduates to fill them. that's why at devry university, we're teaming up with companies like cisco to help make sure everyone's ready with the know how we need for a new tomorrow. [ male announcer ] make sure america's ready. make sure you're ready. at ♪ in today's flashback, we look back at a speech that may have change the way we view modern politics and modern politicians, it was on this day in 1952 that then-senator richard nixon gave what became
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known as the checkers speech. the move turned out to be a stroke of political genius. nixon, used to the new medium of television as a way to address allegations. he used it to address allegations that he was using a slush fund for personal gain and saved his newly minted role for dwight eisenhower for vice presidential case. >> 60 years ago richard nixon gave one of the most famous speeches in american political history. and in so doing invented new rules for financial disclosure for political candidates that are being debated anew in this year's presidential campaign. seeking the place on the gop ticket, as dwight eisenhower's running mate, richard nixon gave his famous checkers speech 60 years ago this weekend and laid his finances bare. >> everything i've earned, everything i've spent, everything i owe -- >> it's a speech with eerie
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relevance to the 2012 campaign. in which another candidate, mitt romney, faces demands to disclose his finances. >> as if you decide to do more and more, you just give, if you will, the opposition a chance to distort and twist and be dishonest. >> ironically, nixon's financial disclosure in 1952 set a new standard for future candidates for national office. >> not even nixon himself would not trying to set aen ethical standard, he was trying to save his skin it became a sort of standard for candidates from then on. >> jeff frank, author of a forthcoming book says nixon was gambling his political future and without knowing it, shaping political races for years to come. accused of personally benefitting from a slush fund set up by wealthy california backers, nixon opted to tell everything about his finances on national tv. even his wife's wardrobe. >> i should say this, that pat
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doesn't have a mink coat, but she does have a respectable republican cloth coat. >> and the little dog checkers, a gift from a man in texas. >> you know the kids, like all kids, love the dog. and i just want to say this right now that regardless of what they say about it, we're going to keep it. >> but nixon also shrewdly turned the issue of financial disclosure on his democratic opponents. adlai stevenson and john spartan. >> both mr. spartan and mr. stevenson should come before the american people as i have and make complete financial statements as to their financial history. if they don't, it will be an admission that they have something to hide. >> it's a challenge that reverberates in american politics to this day. the issue of romney's disclosure returned to the headlines just this weekend. after the republican presidential candidate as promised released his 2011 tax return and no more.
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and democrats once again echoed the charge that richard nixon first made 60 years ago -- nondisclosure only means one thing -- he's got something to hide. michael isikoff, nbc news, washington. eight years after the checkers speech, nixon faced off with jfk in the first-ever televised debate. that is then, an absolute game-changer in presidential politics. coming up in the next hour, we'll talk about how we could see another game-changer in a few weeks. first, we'll go rocky mountain high. we're going to find out why the centennial state is so important in this year's presidential election. if you are one of the millions of men who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%. both are used to treat men with low testosterone. androgel 1.62%
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mitt romney's on a new quest to conquer the west this sunday n. a couple of hours he will fly
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from l.a. to colorado, a key battleground state in this presidential race. in 2008 it played well for president obama after gone republican in 2004, and ethn ethnically i won't mince words, but it is a very white state, and has a significant hispanic community. here to talk about it is allison sher i have who is in denver and the washington bureau chief for the "denver post." here in the studio erin mcpike as well. let me start with you out there in denver, allison, what are you hearing on the ground from vo voters right now in colorado? what are they saying to you in terms of the issues that are going to swing this election? >> well, i mean, it is use issues to swing the vote in colorado are the same as everywhere. they care about the economy and the deficit and education and safe neighborhood, but it is really a gut check feeling like you go into the -- if you are an
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independent voter and you don't know who you are going vote for, you will go into the booth and make a desession that day on who you think is the best person to take you through the next four years and hopefully a bet ter next four years than it has been. colorado's unemployment rate is high and people have not had an easy time here. >> what part of the election is going to be decided? >> well, the population base is mo mostly in denver and the suburbs. so the denver suburbs is where it swings. if you want smaller than that, it is suburban women is where the decisions are made, because they tend to be independent. they tend to care about national security, education and the deficit and they often don't make up their mind until the kids go back to school and they have time to think about it. >> is so-called starbucks moms. and at one point colorado was number one in the the ad spending in the campaign, and $20 million worth all totaled and when you break that down, it is money spent by 21 different
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groups on roughly some 19,000 ads in colorado alone. what does that tell you about that state, erin mcpike? >> well, this is the quintessential swing state. the unemployment rate there in colorado tracks very closely with the national average at about 8.2 or 8.3%. now, this is a state that the republican national committee was saying earlier in the spring they they were not sure that mitt romney could do as well in colorado as other swing states and president obama's campaign has felt very strong about colorado and the nine electoral votes, but republicans in the last couple of months have been pleasantly surprised at how close the polling is there now, and so that is why we are seeing an uptick in the activity by the romney campaign in colorado. >> allison, are voters there in colorado become desensitized to all of the ads, when you are seeing that many ads on television, on the radio, on the internet, at some point do you think that they have tuned out? >> i think they have.
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i mean, if -- i turned on the tv last night, and there is not a single, not that many ads for mattress companies or grocery stores or anything, or heating and air conditioning, but it is mostly ads. at some point you walk a wway a have it on in the background and then go back to the program when it cop -- comes back on. it might be an arms race. >> who thought we would be pray praying for mattress ads. and now sh, what about the builn advantage there in colorado? >> i would not predict anybody having an built-in advantage. the redrent pocent polls in the week including our own, "denver post" puts obama ahead one or two percentage points, but always within the margin of error including "the new york times" and the quinnipiac and the others about the same, so that is why i believe you will
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see mitt romney trailing back here in the next few days. >> we love it to talk to the folks actually on the ground there. thank you for spending time with us, and of course sh, the real clear politics reporter erin mcpike, and ladies, great to have you both with us. you are going to stick around? >> i will. >> i hope we are paying you double time today. coming up, i hope we are going live to colorado where mitt romney hopes to gain a few votes today. plus -- >> i want to see fire in the belly and move forward. >> that is wisconsin governor scott walker this morning. we want to talk to a senior republican strategist about whether mitt romney will be taking the governor's advice, and then later, ten days to the first presidential debate, we are going to look at how the one-on-one contests can really change the game. you are watching msnbc, the place for politics. [ male announcer ] you are a business pro.
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