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tv   Jansing and Co.  MSNBC  October 24, 2013 10:00am-11:00am EDT

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americans spending countless hours trying to navigate exchanges not ready for trying times. >> we have documented a record of republicans attempting to sabotage the affordable care act. republicans have not shown us that they are trying to make this law work so far. and we're just getting started here. the house has two more hearings planned this weekend. it all appears to be part of the new republican strategy. instead of trying to repeal or defund the law, now they'll use the hearings to pick it apart. critics say the problem with the people doing the questioning didn't want the law in the first place and tried to repeal it more than 40 types. politi politico's headline says obama hearings, republicans with rollout switch tactics. next week it will be kathleen sebelius in the hot seat, but today later on she'll tour one of the obama care call centers
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in phoenix and begin answering questions from reporters after that. >> deborah lynnser is's managing editor and ruth is a columnist for "the washington post." good morning. >> good morning. >> the request here is fix it not nix it. what are the chances of that happening some. >> i think he makes a good point. this would be much more serious oversight needed, oversight clearly on this issue. if the republicans had not tried to completely destroyed this so they come from a less oversight perspective and even if the democrats put heat on the contractors to get this moving quickly, i think that would probably be better for everyone. the way congressman jerry conley put it it, to politico, they will say their motivation is just to make it work so everyone can have affordable health care. how can you say that? they just shout down the government. ruth, where does this go from
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here? >> well, we know we're not going to nix it so we should try to fix it and we should probably move on from silly rhymes to actually trying to get it done. the problem is that one side, the republican side has obviously ill intentions toward the law and every incentive political and ideological to make sure it doesn't get fixed. the other side, democrats are dealing with a rollout at the very least that has obviously been bumpy to understated and really serious questions about whether it's not simply the rollout, but whether these things can be fixed and can be fixed in time. so one side has ill intensions toward the law and the other has has difficult problems on the ground to deal with. >> are we going get real information about this and the
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key question is do there need to be some delays and we heard from democrats in the senate who are now calling for some changes. we heard henry waxman asking questions and will we get real information that helps to move forward? >> that's the key question and that will decide whether or not what we witnessed here is oversight. you will learn how to build a web site, that's for sure. if you're sitting with this at home it will be technical. different companies who are contracted for different aspects of the build and design of this endeavor. it clearly had a lot of cooks here and we all see the results of how it was put out, but i think much of what we're seeing here and much of what could come out of this is either a better rollout and a better sign-up towards these deadlines, you know, or an administration that will have to push it a little bit. >> what about the push?
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how do you make this push? how do you get this to the point where you say, okay, we can say unequivocally, this is getting better? >> you push and push and push. you put very competent people like jeff zions in charge of the push. >> does this help putting these folks on the hot seat? >> well, it depends on who these folks is. what we're watching now is a sort of -- it's not a circular firing squad. it's a circular kind of finger-pointing squad. it wasn't me. i was ready. it's not me, i was ready. they told me. it was not my job. it makes it interesting and informative theater and what you need to do is make sure two things that you have incredibly competent people on the job, getting it done and number two that the bureaucracy is not afraid or deterred or whatever from letting the folks up the
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chain of command up to and including the president know that things are not ready for prime time and that things are not going as planned because a big thing that happened here was a failure to deliver information about where thins stood and whether the rollout was ready and that's got to change. there has to be a willingness to deliver bad news. >> i want to bring in senator richard blumenthal, democrat from connecticut. good to see you this morning. >> thank you, chris. good to be with you. >> your state hired a single company and stopped writing the code, essentially getting this all together in july so they could start testing and the chief executive of connecticut's exchange, his analysis of what happened on the national level is that the feds thought they might be integrating, say, five, six or seven states into this national change and instead they've got 36. do you think that's what happened here? what is going on?
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>> well, the first point is the administration needs to tell us what is going on, needs to level with the american people, needs to explain not only what their analysis is, but what they are doing fully to solve these so-called glitches or kinks. >> do you think they haven't leveled with the american people to this point, senator? >> not yet. >> they haven't leveled with the united states senate. they haven't briefed us on what they think are the underlying problems. they were supposed to do so yesterday and canceled the meeting. so i think there needs to be fuller, fairer, straightforward and complete accounting for what's going on, but at the same time going back to, i think, the very important question that you asked, there are some real success stories. connecticut is one of them. maryland, kentucky, washington state. the administration might well look at the way access health connecticut is doing its job
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through its -- and half of those enrollments are from people that don't need subsidies indicating that they were very likely denied insurance coverage because of pre-existing conditions and now they have that insurance, and i'm talking to people throughout the state of connecticut who are not only satisfied. they're very happy that the premiums are lower and they're going for preventive care and cancer detection that will save this as well as connecticut millions and millions of dollars. so i think that you've asked the key question. what can the administration learn learn by look at connecticut and improving their system. >> you make a good point that the states have done very well with this rollout in contrast to what has happened with the federal government. so given what is going on and the purpose of this hearing or at least the stated purpose of the hearing. did you agree with other democrats who have come out and said we need to delay the penalty for the individual mandate? >> we have to consider delaying
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the mandate that is the penalty. the administration made some -- >> for how long, do you think? >> that will depend the leveling with the american people as to how soon these glitches are going to be solved. if it's a matter of days, then the delay would be different than if it's a matter of months, but the the important point here is that we need more certainty, and we need to know what the packs are and both as to the open enrollment period which is scheduled in on march 31 and in position of that penalty, there may be a need for delays if these kinds of problems continue and that's the f here. the administration has dem the straighted flexibility yesterday when it delayed by six weeks in position of that penalty, and that kind of technical change i think indicates that the administration is doing what it should do which is flexibility in the light of these unforeseen
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i.t. problems. maybe they should have been foreseen, but the blame really should go and people should be held accountable, once we solved these kinds of ongoing problems and make the system grow. >> senator blumenthal, always good to have you on the program. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> i think he brings up a good point, ruth, that there's been a lot of talk about the delay, but theree another part of that equation, of course, which is the concern among supporters of the health care,a fordable care act that a delay gives republicans more of an opportunity to try to defund, delay, work whatever they can work those who have tried so desperately to make this not happen. it sounds from an earlier answer that you think that this is going to be a done deal and they'll just figure out a way to get this right, but is there a danger in a delay? >> there is totally a danger in a delay and that's why we've
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seen the administration soy is rift is not to delaying not things that are not central to the law like the employer mandate, but things that are central to the law and primarily the individual mandate and without the mandate, it doesn't work. look, the logical thing might have been to say let's put off everything for six months and let's put it off in a year where there was good faith on both sides to get things off and running in a youthful, effective way, i thought what you did with frustration that he, a democrat and a supporter of the information and not just the rollout, but the information that they're getting from the add minh station and that's something they need to be
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attenti attentive. to suggest that the administration has never fully levelled with the american people, that there should be some consideration of a delay is huge on the part of someone like richard blumenthal. >> absolutely. i agree with you. i think that was a very important moment, and a very important message to the white house. democrats are worried and they don't want to hear this. they laugh the house in 2010. a lot of democrats lost their seats to people who ran against them, running against obama care. they don't want to see this. they want to see a success. they've put a lot into this and they have a lot on the line. >> one of the things that we'll be talking about later on in the program is how complicated will it it be to fix this because there is a political aspect to this, but there is a technical one, as well. so folks should stay tuned for that mp in the meantime, thank to both of you. what a bombshell. kennedy michael skakel has won to overturn his murder conviction. skakel could be out of jail as
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early as tomorrow after a judge ordered a new trial. he's the nephew of robert f. kennedy's widow. he was convicted of the 1975 murder of martha moxley when both were just 15. in a scathing 136-page decision the judge said skakel's attorney did not adkwa thely represent him. robert f. kennedy, jr., has defended his cousin from the beginning. >> michael skakel is innocent. michael skakel is 11 miles away with five eyewitnesses when this murder occurred. the problem was he had his one crime was that he had a very, very poor representation and mickey, unfortunate lly did not call those witnesses. >> if skakel gets another trial there's no way he will be convicted and prosecutorses are appealing this ruling. avo: the volkswagen "sign then drive"
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>> we're continuing to keep an ear to the house hearing into the troubles of the health website. let me play for you just a little bit of the testimony from cheryl campbell. she is the senior vice president at one of the key contractors responsible for this website. she says things are getting better. >> we anticipate that the system as we have seen is improving day over day any that we annes it pate that people will be able to enroll in the timeframe allotted that's necessary for them to have insurance for the january 1 timeframe. >> that could be a key piece of testimony with calls that are going on in some quarters to delay the individual mandate timeline. so we'll keep our ear to that hearing and have more for you coming up. in the meantime, a new and emotional interview from a group of close 14s of the beloved high school teacher killed in massachusetts this week.
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they say colleen ritzer was living her dream as a math teacher and the pain of losing her is indescribable. >> she had so much to look forward to and there were so many things that she should have been able to do and it's just not fair. >> every story that you read about how kind and gentle and caring she was was absolutely true. >> a vigil was held last night for the 24-year-old who was killed at the school where she taught in danveres. 14-year-old student philip kissom has been charged with first-degree murder and will be charged as an adult. it's been a disturbing week involving kids. a 12-year-old student killed a math teacher and killed himself. he brought more than 400 rounds of ammunition multiple knives and a handgun to school. i want to bring in former fbi
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analyst, clint van zandt. the student suspect philip chisholm fit in, he was a normal kid. what would investigators be looking at, clint? >> motive is always important because we want to know how to stop the next terrible incident like this from happening. the shooting that took place earlier this week where the 45-year-old marine corps vet from afghanistan teacher was gunned down and killed in nevada, that appears to be a case of bullying. students are coming forward saying that young boy who did the shooting was bullied. no justification, but it starts to give us that head shaking, yeah, one more case of bullying, but here, chris, you've got a boy who is relatively new to the school. look, he's 6'2", 140 pounds. he's an athlete. he's evidently a good student.
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we're lost here for motive. you and i can reach here on our minds and say what normally motivates a terrible crime? we've heard a teacher was stabbed to death, was beaten to death. it just brings terrible pictures to our mind of why, but again, we're struggling to try to understand each of these cases so that hopefully -- hopefully, we can prevent the next one. >> i was shocked to hear how many of these cases there are. every day in america juveniles commit murder. and at least when you're looking at it from a profile standpoint or the important thing, as you say, how to prevent this. is there a difference between juvenile killers and adult killers, clint? >> i think there is. sometimes the motives are the same and the motives may not be as well formed. we know from studies that the fbi secret service have done. some of these school shootings have been planned for weeks and months and some of them just take place overnight and we know, for example, chris, since
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1995 over 18 school administrator, teachers, staff members have been gunned down, have been killed in schools, but of course, we've got upwards of 59 million students in america between k and 12. so the pool of likely killers or shooters is very small, but, chris, we always have what profilers and psychologists call leakage. we always have afterwards, people start nodding their heads and say i heard him say anything. i heard her say something. we knew. so we're just kind of waiting to hear about these things again on these two latest, terrible incidents and two in one week and one teacher in the marine corps did get combat pay in afghanistan and he didn't get combat pay as a middle school teacher. >> you shouldn't have to. similar statistics. 90% of teen killers are male.
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10% are mentally ill. 80% or more plan on dying during the shooting, either self-inflicted or death by cop. the most common reason for a school massacre is revenge on those who have wronged the killer and also instant fame and recognition. what are some of the specific clues that people can look for because, look, teen angst is everywhere and that's a very big leap from there to taking a gun to school. >> and realize like every other terrible incident from sandy hook to columbine up to this week and even this week, chris, we had two different situations and one in nevada is just what you're talking about. a young man brings a gun to school, multiple victims and a teacher intervenes and the teacher is killed and a young man commits suicide, but this other one, chris, this other one that took place in massachusetts and very close where my daughter
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and grandchild live in that same area. that is more targeted. one wonders whether the teacher came in and whether this young man was doing something he shouldn't have been and was caught in the act, whether it was a targeting of the teacher or a random act of violence and that was something far more personal. so again, as investigators and profilers like i used to do, in looking at these cases, probably two different motives. >> clint van zandt, always good to get your insights. thanks, clint. >> thank you, chris. the ohio man that confessed on the internet, he got on the internet to get off easier. >> it wasn't an attempt to get off easier. >> no. i believe any lawyers including my own would tell you that abandoning your defense and pleading guilty is not a way to get a lighter sentence.
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so try new glow unstopables. they fill your closet with scents so fresh they last for 12 weeks! downy unstopables. try with downy infusions. story off the coast of africa where u.s. officials are now confirming that two americans, civilian sailors have been kidnapped off the coast of nigeria. they were reportedly the captain and chief engineer of a u.s.-flagged oil tanker. we'll get you up-to-date as more information comes in. checking the news feed this morning, reports that the navy yard shooter may have wanted revenge against the navy believing that they developed ultra low frequency weapons and that they were using them on him. aaron alexis was corresponding with a mind control outreach group. in one email he writes i feel the constant bombardment from
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the e.l.f. weapon is starting to take a toll on my body. the bishop of bling. the german bishop has been suspended after reportedly spending $42 million renovating his new home. here's part of the shopping list. a $20,000 bathtub, $34,000 for a conference table and a $4 million chapel. hillary clinton will be the big guest at the center for american progress conference. the liberal think tank taking on everything from middle-class growth to climate change. head to if you read only one thing this morning, "time" magazine has a really cool interactive article that matches your mood and kind of your personality to where you might want to live. other if, west virginia is the most neurotic state, utah, the most agreeable and the folks of wisconsin are the country's most extroverted. where do you fit in?
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it's up on our facebook page at facebook/jansingco. vo: it's that time of year again. medicare open enrollment. time to compare plans and costs. you don't have to make changes. but it never hurts to see if you can find better coverage, save money, or both. and check out the preventive benefits you get after the health care law. open enrollment ends december 7th. so now's the time. visit or call 1-800-medicare
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it's not dead yet. talking about immigration reform and any minute now the president will make a renewed push for immigration and things are getting pretty interesting. you have everything from facebook's mark zuckerberg rallying silicon valley to evangelicals pushing what they're calling biblical immigration. so the question is could immigration's time finally come? we will have the president's remarks for you as soon as he begins. >> it's been more than an hour of partisan bickering and finger-pointing at the first house hearing into the obama care website glitches. take a listen. >> once again, here we have my republican colleagues trying to scare everybody. >> would the gentleman yield? >> no, i will not yield to this monkey court or whatever this is. >> this is not a monkey court. >> do whatever you want. i am not yielding. i am trying to tell you --
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>> respecting citizens. >> hipaa doesn't apply, no health information in the process and you are asked about your address, your date of birth and you are not asked health information so why are we going down this path? >> well, trying to sign up has been frustrating for a lot of people. there was a recent comment on health that taps into the frustration. it said, quote, this is by far the worst website i have ever tried to navigate. i have tried at least 50 times to get in and have never made it all of the way, but in the past hour an executive from cgi, the main software contractor says her company has been making fixes and things have been steadily improving with shortened wait and transaction times. she's added the system to be fixed in time to meet the obama care enrollment deadline. i want to bring in the president and founder of fms, that's a software and database programming company. good to see you. good morning. >> thank you very much for having me, chris.
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>> i should let people know that you actually met with staffers on the hill, staff members of the congressmen on this actual committee. give us a sense sort of put in perspective how big a launch was this? >> how complicated was this to get up and running? >> i don't know why they made it it so complicated. this really shouldn't be that difficult. this is the automation of a paper form on to a website and then it's supposed to do some look-ups to calculate subsidies. in the grand scheme of things it doesn't provide health care. it doesn't even provide insurance. it's applying for something. >> well, there is precedent and other countries who have done this kind of thing. i think france, netherlands, great britain and the state exchanges have been working pretty well. california being the biggest of them and that seems to have been going pretty smoothly, but is it a little bit like comparing apples and oranges because the number of people involved in
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this and the number of states is so big and so much bigger than had been anticipated. >> that seems like an excuse that people are raising. when i first experienced it on october 1st, i went on as a consumer and i wanted to check on price quotes for insurance for my family and i wanted to buy insurance for my staff and small business and the experience was so awful. i could tell as a database web expert that this was not going to work for one user, much less lots of users on it. it is just an awful website built by people who really are speshizing in getting government contracts and not thesly delivering technical expertise. >> to give you one example of what happened and we can show you when you go to health and this morning we went to places that said see plans and prices in your area and an area that says see plans now.
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this morning it wasn't work asking now it comes up and it actually says that you can start filling out the form and show the prices, although not the lower cost you may qualify for based on household size and income, but at least it it gives you a starting point. if this should have been simple in the first place could it have been simple in the first place because already from my limited experience this portion of it seems to have gotten better. >> well, they implemented that and that really should be the first thing that this application has which is a very simple way to get an unsubsidized, accurate quote. without having to provide any personal information like social security number or birth dates and things like that. that should be a slam dunk, no brainer and the most critical part of that application needs to be a comparison matrix that shows all of the different plans in some sort of matrix like buying a tv at best buy or something like that. see if your doctor's on the plan
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or not and then a button to buy it because you will never touch the subsidy again or something that estimates the subsidy. >> the subsidy is important, though, because a lot of the people when are uninsured are people with a very low income and a number may come up that is inflated in the sense that it doesn't reflect the sub sdoe and what the government offed to do when it could be just a fraction of that. 's lot of people with pre-existing conditions are paying much higher prices anyway. so even the unsubsidized price would be a benefit to them and then the other part is it's patronizing to suggest that people don't understand what a retail price is or a manufactured, suggested retail price is versus another price.
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we need to get people through as quickly as possible so they can start understanding what their options are because before they even buy they need to know which plan they want, what deductions to take. all of the different features for all of these plans and none of that has been shown yet. >> one expert told "the new york times" that up to 9 million lines of software code may need to be re-written to fix the website. i wonder if you agree with that because what we heard from cheryl campbell, the senior v.p. of cgi is that it will be fixed and it will be fixed in time for people to meet the deadline. >> you know, i don't know what cdgi brings to the table. whatever management team was in place that launched on october 1st thought that they delivered a quality product so i don't see how the same management team can be trusted to come up with a solution because clearly, they don't understand what a enterprise, national roll out quality product should be.
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they're not even close. >> obviously, and there always is, some politics involved in this hearing, but if you were asking the questions what would you want to know? >> this thing is such a mess and it was developed poorly. it looks like it wasn't even tested, but overall even if they built it right the design was wrong and design is tied to management. i would ask some basic questions leak, why need someone's information. why do you set it up. they late literally design bottlenecks that shows in my bock that even on? seriously? >> absolutely. it's that limited & in its sophistication? >> absolutely.
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this was built -- i think by people who were never paid before to create software. i think they just got out of school or something. they're contractors creating contracts and they're incentivized to get the cheapest people possible. >> she said they've developed other web sites before and that's something that will be looked at. you are tracking this every day. is it getting better? >> they tweaked a couple of things there. you showed the site that is supposed to give you the unsubsidized price and that's still not done right to make a decision. see, i don't have a problem with people not signing up right now. if i was going to sign up because the dew date isn't noef toef and it will be a much faster process. at least that's the hope. this is not that hard and now their is filling out a paper form and the president is asking
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people to dial 800 number to do this. this is not rocket skiesness. we're not curing cancer and we're not even providing health insurance. we're filling out a paper form. >> it is confusing. as someone who has tried to figure out the health care system and someone who has health care, everyone who sits around my table that the level of frustration that i had in the private marketplace, in my place, was incredibly high. >> as a business owner who had to buy insurance i'm not saying the current system is good, you know? so that's why i was on the health site. i wanted alternativis and wanted options. i don't even know if my current health care plan for my employees is platinum, gold, silver or bronze level, right? it's very opaque. so having health add transparency to the insurance industry is great. that's wonderful. >> luke chung, it is a pleasure to have you on the program. come back and maybe in a few
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weeks we'll see how they're doing. thanks so much. >> thank you. this morning get in washington is also did it happen or didn't it? the controversy started last weekend when senator dick durbin's facebook page said that at a white house meeting, quote, one gop house leader told the president i cannot even stand to look at you. then this came from speaker boehner's office, quote, senator durbin's accusation is a serious one and it appears to have been invented out of thin air. the senator should disclose who told him about this account of events and apologize. jay carney was asked about it yesterday. >> i looked into this and spoke with shn who was in the meeting and it did not happen. my understanding is that, again, from participant in the meeting that that didn't happen. >> but dick durbin isn't backing down. joining me to talk about democratic polster margie o'mara
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and former special assistant to president busch. >> they provided us with a quick statement margie, he isn't becoming of, the statement that senator durbin said reflects a real climate of negativity in washington that has hurt republicans in the polls, that has caused washington to literally shut down, and you've had three polls recently show that republicans have record low approval rating. there is this sense that a lot of republicans feel they can't work with the president, they can't work with democrats and they can't work with moderates in their party and they're just focused on folks that are more farther to the right and what senator durbin says he heard is something that seems very consistent with that climate. >> and let me give you just 30
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seconds, ron, to answer that same question because then we're getting ready to hear from the president on immigration. >> sure, chris. i think this is a very sad tale. the white house has come out and said it wasn't true. it seems that senator durbin and those on the far left are more interested in trying to demonize republicans than speak the truth. this is supposed to be the most transparent in history if the folks in the room say it doesn't happen, it's a crass, political trick rather than bringing size together. >> i know i want to bring both of you and i know you'll listen in on the president on education. he will be come coming there, to the white house. it was not possible, and we only have a handful of days when they're scheduled to be in session and some say not even early 2014. having said that we are in a
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very different political climate now and they been a lot of pressure on the republicans after the shutdown. there have been a number of republicans including senator john mccain who had said that, look, this is a political imperative that there is a huge constituency out there that the republicans can't afford to turn away. there's something new from representative darryl issa who is preparing to release information next week to provide legal status for six years to undo you meaned immigrants in the united states. he told that to mrit dough in an interview just yesterday. margie, as we wait for him to come out, what do you think the chances of some sort of immigration reform gets done? >> it certainly would be in everybody's interest, and it's not just for -- it's not just to appeal to latino voters that republicans should think about coming to the table on immigration. voters across the board including republicans want to see a path to citizenship and this is not something that
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latinos support and non-latinos support. this is americans when vote ed in 12, and it would be a shame if republicans once again tried to block issues and policies that have a wide amount of support. >> and ron, we heard yesterday from house speaker boehner that he says he's hopeful. what do you put the chances at as we see the group coming in and i'll have to interrupt you as the president starts speaking. >> i'll put at 50/50. the president's political stock has been reduced by this obama care debacle in addition to what happened in syria, ben gasser and issues and the president's clout and his ability to bring folks to the house and senate together is diminished and it depends on what speaker boehner and harry reid are able to iron out amongst themeses and can they find consensus and can they get to some common ground and
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can they impose some path of citizenship that doesn't punish those who come here illegally to then benefit those who have broken the law. there is a slim possibility. again, i would say 50/50 in the next up cannel of months and the president's ability to get it delivered, chris is diminished. >> the folks you just saw walking out onstage and there are more of them in the audience, immigration reform supporters and mark murray is in our bureau in washington. what's the feeling on the hill and what are the chances this gets done, mark? it's in john boehner's hands, the speaker of the house. after all, this congress will go through the year of 2014. one of the things that's problematic is you get close to the mid-term season, but the question is does john boehner bring any kind of legislation to the floor including the senate legislation that was passed by a bipartisan group of democrat and republican senators back in june, and chris, just like we saw during the government shutdown, one of the episodes we
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might end up seeing is house republicans trying to find any alternative legislation and votes to be able to get it and we'll be able to see. >> here is the president and vice president joe biden at his side. let's listen in. >> thank you very much. please, have a seat, everybody. good morning. >> good morning. >> and welcome to the white house. today i'm here with leaders from business, from labor, from faith communities who with are united around one goal, finishing the job of fixing a broken immigration system. this is not just an idea whose time has come. this is an idea whose time has been around for years now. leaders like all of you have worked together with republicans and democrats in this town in good faith for years to try to get this done and this is the moment when we should be able to
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finally get the job done. now it's no secret that the american people haven't seen much out of washington that they like these days. the shutdown and the threat of the first default in more than 200 years inflicted real pain on our businesses and on families across the country and it was a completely unnecessary self-inflicted wound with real costs to real people and it can never happen again. but even with the shutdown over and the threat of default eliminated, democrats and republicans had really big disagreements and there are just some fundamentally different views about how we should move forward on certain issues. on the other end, as i said the day after the shutdown ended, that's no reason that we shouldn't be able to work together on the things that we do agree on.
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we should be able to work together on a responsible budget that invests in the things we need to grow our economy and create jobs even while we maintain fiscal discipline. we should be able to have a farm bill that protects americans in hard times and we should pass immigration reform. [ applause ] >> we should pass immigration reform. [ applause ] >> it's good for our economy. it's good for our national security. it's good for our people and we should do it this year. everybody knows that our current immigration system is broken. across the political spectrum people understand that, we've known it for years. it's not short to invite some of the brightest minds from around the world to study here and then
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not let them start businesses here. we send them back to their home countries and start businesses and create jobs and invent products some place else. it's not fair to businesses and middle-class families who play by the rules when we allow companies that are trying to undercut the rules work in the shadow economy to hire folks at lower wages or no benefits, no overtime so that somehow they get a competitive edge from breaking the the rules. that doesn't make sense. it doesn't make sense to have 11 million people who are in this country illegal ly without any incentive or any way for them to come out of the shadows, get right with the law, meet their responsibilities and permit
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their families then to move ahead. it's not smart. it's not fair. it doesn't make sense. we have kicked this particular can down the road for too long. now the good news is this year the senate has already passed an immigration reform bill by a wide bipartisan majority that addressed all of these issues. >> it's a bill that would strengthen our borders and it would level the playing field by holding the unscrupulous employers beingable if they knowingly hire undocumented workers. it would modernize our legal immigration system so that even as we train american workers for the jobs of the future and we're attracting highly skilled entrepreneurs from beyond our borders to join with us to create jobs here in the united states. it would make sure that everybody plays by the same rules by providing a pathway to earned citizen someone for those
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who are here illegally, one that includes passing a background check, learning english, paying taxes, paying a penalty, getting in line behind everyone who is trying to come here the right way. so it had all of the component parts. it didn't have everything that i wanted and it didn't have everything that everybody wanted, but it addressed the core challenges of how we create an immigration system that is fair, that's just, that is true to our traditions as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants. and that's passed by the senate by a bipartisan majority. so. [ applause ] here's what we also know, that the bill would grow the economy and shrink our deficits. independent economists have shown that if the senate bill became law over the next two decades our economy would grow
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by $1.4 trillion more than it would if we don't pass the law. it would reduce our deficits by nearly a trillion dollars. so this isn't just the right thing to do. it's the smart thing to do. securing our borders, modernizing our legal immigration system and providing a pathway to earned, legalized citizenship, growing our economy, strengthening our middle class, reducing our deficits and that's what common-sense immigration reform will do. obviously because something is good and fair and fiscally responsible and supported by business and labor and the evangelical community and many democrats and many republicans that does not mean that it will actually get done. this is washington, after all. everything tends to be viewed
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through a political prism and everybody has been looking at the politics of this and i know that there are some folks in this town that say if obama's for it then i'm against it. i would remind everybody that my predecessor was for it when he proposed this almost a decade ago and i joined with 23 senate republicans back then to support that reform and i would remind you that this reform won votes in the senate in june. i'm not running for office again. i just believe this is the right thing to do. i just believe this is the right thing to do. [ applause ]
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and i also believe that good politics is good policy in this instance and it's the broken immigration system and they should take a closer look at the polls because the american people support this. it's not something they reject. they support it. everybody wins here if we get this done, if there was a good reason not to pass this common sense reform, i haven't heard it. so everyone still standing in the way of this bipartisan reform should at least have to explain why. a clear majority of the american people think it's the right thing to do. n now. >> democratic leaders have introduced a bill in the house that is similar to the bipartisan senate bill so now it's up to republicans in the house to decide whether reform becomes a reality or not. i do know and this is good news that many of them agree that we
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need to fix our broken immigration system across these areas that we've just discussed, and what i've said to them and i repeat today that house republicans have new and different additional ideas for how we should move forward, then we want to hear them i know democrats and democrats in the senate those who voted for immigration reformal realready e eager to hear ideas. what we can't do is sweep the problem under the rug one more time and leave it it for someone else to solve some time in the future. rather than create problems let's prove to the american people that washington can actually solve some problems. this reform comes as close to anything we've got to a law that will benefit everybody now and
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far into the future. so let's see if we can get this done and let's see if we can get it it done this year. [ applause ] we've got the time to do it. republicans in the house including the speaker have said we should act so let's not wait. it doesn't get easier to just put it off. let's do it now. let's not delay. let's get this done, and let's do it in a bipartisan fashion. for those of you here today, i want to say thank you. i want to thank you for your persistence. i want to thank you for your activism and your passion and your heart when it comes to this issue, and i want to tell you
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you have to keep it up. keep putting the pressure on all of us to get this done. there are going to be moments and there are always moments like this in big efforts that reform where you meet resistance and the press will declare something dead. it's not going to happen, but that can be overcome, and i have to say, joe, as i look out at this room these don't look like people that are easily deterred. >> i don't think so. >> they don't look like folks that are going to give up. >> you look fired up to make the next push and whether you're a republican or a democrat or an independent, i want you to keep working and i'm going to be right next to you to make sure we get immigration reform done. it is time. let's go get it done. thank you very much, everybody. [ cheers and applause ]
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>> let's go get it done. hi, everybody. i'm thomas roberts. you've been watching president obama's remarks at the white house this morning calling for congress to pass immigration reform and the president truly there in campaign mode about getting this done and mentioning the fact that he's not running for reelection so he has nothing to lose in trying to push this through. joining me now at the white house is nbc news correspondent luke russert. let's talk about this because there's a lot going on in washington, d.c., right now that has nothing to do with immigration reform. >> right. >> it seems that the white house wants to take the heat off where it is on obama care and see it on something that the president wants to get legislatively done over the next couple of years. >> reporter: certainly, thomas. what struck me about that announcement or speech that you just saw is kind of what you mentioned. this idea of it being a campaign rally. i've never heard that clapping and the president saying let's go. let's go get it done outside of really the campaign trail. you obviously see it's a spirited issue for a lot of democrats an


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