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tv   The Daily Rundown  MSNBC  October 5, 2011 6:00am-7:00am PDT

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world on saturday. >> it's way too early. what time is it? >> it's "morning joe." still around for "the daily run down" with chuck. >> all right. chris christie's out. so mitt romney is the favorite, right? not by much. can he lock up his position at the top? is fate now determined by how well he weathers the pylon from the right. plus, want proof the race is still very fluid yet more polls showing herman cain near the top. how does he keep it going? we're going to talk to his campaign manager exclusively this morning. and will the white house jobs bill get fast tracked or is it doa or both? depends on which republican you ask. the president called on eric cantor for stalling tactics. well, the republican senate leader mitch mcconnell said he wanted a vote right away. or did he? it's wednesday, october 5, 2011, this is "the daily run down," i'm chuck todd. the west virginia raise turned into a referendum on president
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obama at the end and the democrat narrowly stayed in power there, a sigh of relief from the west wing. we have a lot to get to. let's start with my "first read" of the morning. with iowa maybe 90 days away and barring a couple candidacies, the republicans have their field. after months of denials, new jersey governor chr oor chris c had to end the idea that he would run for president. he said no thank you to a 2012 bid. >> i will once again say that i'm not going to be a candidate in 2012. >> i'm not one of the guys planning to run for president. this is a ten-year commitment to the most consuming job on the facest earth. >> in the end, it wasn't really any question which came first to me. >> all the factors say go. but my heart says no. >> in the end, what i've always felt was the right decision
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remains the right decision today. now is not my time. >> but he had a lot of time, actually, as if he wasn't quite ready to leave the stage. christie took some 38 questions about his decision saying pleas for him to run were not about the party. >> i don't think it says anything particular about the field. i'd like to think it says something about me. >> bottom line though is we are now at the end of this searching for another candidate stage. there are real deadlines here. the new hampshire primary deadline is october 28th. you need to be doing petition signature gathering, for instance in, the state of virginia right now. if you want to get on the ballot. and again, maybe we hear from a sarah palin. maybe we hear if a rudy giuliani. will is only one guy that could have gotten in this late at this point that would instantly have
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vaulted to the top and that was chris christie. we know what our top tier is. so let's move on to that. this is now mitt romney's momentment don't count out rick perry just yet. when romney heads to tallahassee this afternoon, he'll be greeted by a trifecta. all three future speakers of the house are endorsing him. yeah, the state of florida has a bizarre way of doing the florida speakership. it is less democracy, more partying. here's what we still don't know. what will romney look like after millions of dollars of negative ads have been spent against him telling republican voters that he simply not a conservative? and rick perry is going to have the money to make those ads. we have the new fund-raising numbers from his campaign this morning. perry raised over $17 million in the third quarter, remember, he started in august. so he had a month delay for this. he's going to report just over $15 million in cash on hand. according to the campaign, perry had more than 22,000 donors, more than half of them from outside the state of texas.
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now the campaign points out he was only in the race for the second half of the quarter, 49 days. now romney's already mounting an aggressive defense. the first thing he did yesterday after christie's announcement he is went after perry at a florida town hall. listen. >> i don't think that major problem is that social security is a ponzy scheme. i think the problem is keeping it from becoming a perry scheme. governor perry says that it's unconstitutional. and we should end it as a federal program and give it back to the states. >> so we're going to be entering a new phase of the campaign. we've seen the barbs traded back and forth. but in the next week or, two don't be surprised if we actually start seeing the first round of actual television ads in places like iowa, new hampshire, south carolina. remember, we're basically 90 days from the iowa caucuses. ultimately, this republican nomination race is about romney versus romney. it's the romney argument, i'm the most electable guy that can
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you nominate versus the argument against romney which is going to be he's not conservative enough to represent the republican party. which of the romney arguments wins out? finally, the white house this morning is breathing a sigh of relief. west virginia's democratic governor earl ray tomlin survived the nationalizing of the state's special gubernatorial election at the last minute. he beat bill maloney 50% to 47%. he used his victory speech to declare inspendependence from outside groups. now the president wasn't the scapegoat in west virginia. he's making house republicans his scapegoat on the jobs bill. things got heated and petty all at the same time yesterday in a back and forth between the white house and majority leader in the house eric cantor. >> i'd like mr. cantor to come down here to dallas and explain what exactly in this jobs bill does he not believe? n.? if y if you don't would that, at least put this jobs bill up for
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a vote to the entire country knows exactly where members of congress stand. >> well, even before the president had spoken those words about eric cantor, they telegraphed they were going to do it, cantor responded on twitter saying "while the president seems to be in full campaign mode we in the house are going to try to find areas of commonality to work for the people. in the senate, mitch mcconnell tried to stick up for eric cantor. he moved to call the president's bluff saying it will be a great idea to bring up the jobs bill for a vote immediately. harry reid called it a political stunt. he wasn't bringing up the jobs bill. he was attaching it to another bill. and so reid said democrats are scrambling to rewrite the paid fors in the jobs bill in order to bring some of the unconvinced members of his party onboard. so complicated legislative maneuverings all delivering and dishing up what the country has
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said they're sort of tie tired of when it comes to watching congress. as the president and republican leaders accuse each other of playing games, new polling shows americans hold out little hope the two sides can come together to help the economy or create jobs. south dakota senator john thune, chairman of the republican policy commit. he joins me now. all right. senator thune, we saw this games playing that we know goes on in the senate when it comes to attaching a bill here, bring it up for a vote saying hold off and the back and forth and it becomes this leadership maneuverings. the fact of the matter is nothing can happen in the senate until the house deals with it. isn't that correct? >> well, on a revenue measure that is correct. what senator mcconnell tried to do is say the president is in virginia saying pass my jobs bill. senator mcconnell said, okay, we're going to give the senate an opportunity to vote on it. and that was blocked by the senate democratic leader harry reid. the question really, i guess,
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remains does the president really want this voted on? and are the democrats in the senate who are willing to vote for the president's bill? >> but isn't the onus also on the house to bring it up at some point, too, and with republican control in your mind should they bring it up? should they be unafraid to bring it up in the house? >> i don't -- i'm not sure i can say what the house should or shouldn't do. they have their own agenda there. i do know this -- if even if the senate can't pass the bill through here, it's pretty clear it's not going anywhere. so i think the senate would be a good test for it. we'll find out whether or not there are enough democrats in the senate who support this thing. and if it did pass the senate, of course, the house can take it up. my guess is there are a number of democratic senators having serious heart burn about whether or not they want to be for a bill that raises radically raises taxes on job creators in
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this country. >> i want to talk about taxes here. i want you to respond to something that congressman frank wolf said yesterday about the various pledges many of you have signed when it comes to taxes. here's what he said. >> everything must be on the table. and i believe how the pledge is interpreted and enforced by mr. norquist is a roadblock to realistically reforming our tax code. have we really reached a point where one person's demand for ideological purity is paralyzing congress to the point that even a discussion of tax reform is viewed as breaking a no tax pledge? >> is he right? >> well, i think that if we are serious about doing tax reform, and we should be, i think the best thing that we can do to grow the economy and create jobs is reform our tax code, lower rates on businesses and individuals. you know, obviously, there are going to be lots of people who made pledges in the past about
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on various tax pledge that's have been put out there that are probably going to have to revisit those. look, in my view, tax reform, as long as we do it in a way that doesn't raise taxes on people in this country, that perhaps generates more revenue, i think it would if in fact you were lowering tax rates and broadening the tax base in this country, you create more economic activity that, is a good thing for the country and the economy. i think there are a lot of members of congress up here notwithstanding anything that they've signed in the past that would say if we can generate more government revenue by increasing economic activity out there and creating jobs for people in this country, we're going to be for that. >> so you're saying that some of these folks that have signed the norquist pledge are saying, you know what? they ought to rethink it if they want to have a serious conversation about tax reform? so you're saying frank wolf is right? >> well, i think -- i guess what i'm saying, chuck, is i'm not -- in my view, at least, we shouldn't be bound by something that could be interpreted
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different ways if what we're trying to accomplish is broad based tax reform that will lead to greater economic activity, greater economic growth, job creation in this country and, therefore, more government revenue that would help us deal with this deficit issue. i think broad based tax reform ought to be part of our agenda up here. i hope that outside groups that have pledges in the past will recognize that. it's important that we do something on tax reform. >> i want to put up one final poll number for you to react to. it's approval rating on the oba. congressional republicans, a 20% approval rating on the economy. so from bad to worse. so let me ask you, you're in leadership. what should -- what you're doing now, is it working with the voters? they're not satisfied with what you're doing. what are you going to do to change? >> well, first off, i think it does start. the president's approval rating with regard to economy, everybody looks to the white house to provide leadership. i don't believe the president
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has done that, at least not consistent with what the american people want to see. his economic record is pretty clear. you got higher unemployment, more debt, higher gas prices, health care costs keep going up. that's the economic record of this president. congress, i think, should be trying to move forward with proposals that would make it easier, not harder and make it less expensive to create jobs. but almost everything that's being done here in washington is driving up the cost of creating jobs in this country for our small businesses, whether it's overregulation, whether it's taxes. and to me, at least, we ought to be focused on the things that will create jobs in this country. if congress were to do that, those approval rate wogz probabproble -- ratings would go up. but we're going to spend an entire week on the china currency bill which won't go anywhere and the president says accident want. it strikes me at least that the american people are frustrated and they should be with what's happening here in washington. we can change that by actually focusing on things that will create jobs and grow the
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economy. >> you think this currency bill is a waste of time? >> look, i mean obviously the issue with china is an important one. deflating their currency makes it easier for them to export in our country and for us to export to theirs. but there are ways of dealing with that other than the legislation that's on the floor today and particularly given the fact that the white house has said, the speaker said he's not going to take the bill up over there and the president has said this is contrary to what he wants to see happen with regard to the trade recommendationship with chi relationship with china as well. it seems like an exercise in futility and there are lots of things we could be doing that would be conducive to economic growth and job creation and we're focused on things like this. >> all right. senator john thune, i got to leave it there. senator, thanks for coming on this morning. all right. >> you bet. up next, we'll have more on the fights unfolding on capitol hill as president obama ratchets up pressure on congress to pass his jobs bill. we'll talk to two insiders who know why that's easier said than done. plus, poll numbers are on
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the rise. but is herman cain able to take the next step? is he running for president or is he running for a position simply to be a spokesperson inside the party? herman cain's campaign manager is going to join me live to talk about it. still to come, eric holder in hot water. republicans are accusing the attorney general of lying to congress. we'll dig into it. first, a look ahead to the president's schedule. it is a bilateral meeting with the president of honduras. by the way, stephen stills is maybe the favorite song of ken langone. ♪ ♪ [ multiple sounds making melodic tune ] ♪
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there's a wide range of things we're looking at, the only objections i've heard from my caucus is dealing with the paid fors. >> majority leader harry reid signalling some changes ahead on how to pay for the president's jobs bill. democratic leaders are now considering a tax surcharge on millionaires and winning over holdouts in their own party. joining us now, former texas democratic congressman mark frost and former republican congressman from virginia tom davis. all right. martin frost, millionaire surtax. this is a chuck schumer special. he's been advocating, creating that dividing line for quite some time. looks like the president's come around on it. he's talked about it in some form or another. not necessarily this. and they think this is the way to get others onboard. that it's good populous
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politics. >> the dividing line is the $250,000. if the president went down to $250,000 in the jobs bill, he wanted to raise taxes on people, families earning $250,000, schumer was never for that. a lot of people in the democratic caucus were never for that. that's independent college educated suburban voters and democrats have to have. if the president will back off from that, maybe they can do this millionaires thing. >> you know, tom, what i've been surprised at is what point do the republicans have to say, you know, we have to pass something? we can't sit here -- if we totally give -- we can't hand the president this idea of obstruction and let him run against us. ultimately, we're more popular than he is. >> they can put up pieces of that bill and put it together. but they're never going to get the pay fors that the president wants on this kind of thing and the offsets. so it's -- >> how do the republicans do the paid fors? you know, that's what i want to know. >> look at the budget. they did paid fors with cuts in
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the other areas, some of the entitlement spending and the like. they're not going to do it with tax increases. realigning the tax code is the best thing the country can do right now because you can make it more die nam nick terms of how it helps the economy and bring rates down, stop all the special interest loopholes. that has a populous feel as well. >> here's what i don't understand with this argument, everybody is in. everybody agrees, yes, let's reform the tax code. everybody agrees on principles of it. lower the rates, eliminate some of the loopholes. so what's the holdup? >> the holdup is that you have to fight this. it's trench warfare. you have to fight the exceptions one by one and it's hard to doment it's not easy. everybody agrees to the principle. but then when they get to the details, all right, does this tax exemption go? does this one stay? and this is a bloody fight. you remember in the 1980s with bradley gephardt, four years to do that. this is not something you can snap your fingers on and do overnight. >> you know, i would argue that's wrong.
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there are so many proposals that have been out there. reforming the tax code over the last three years that have been written. you know, take it off the shelf. there is bowles-simpsons. ken conrad written one. there is plenty of ideas out there. >> there are. but a lot of the exemptions have been here for 50 years. you have entrenched interest groups, members. this is traditionally been done through ways and mines. it they come up without amendment. >> don't forget the finance committee. >> and the finance committee in the senate. so these interest groups are heavily bought into the members in these areas. homeowners deduction is something that is going to be very difficult to get rid of, charitable deductions. that's where the money is, too. >> all right. a couple political questions for each of you. lesson democrats should take away from west virginia? >> is that you run very hard. the republicans came in very late in that election. you go to your base. you work it hard. you hope the wind is blowing in
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the right direction on the night of the election. i don't think there are any other lessons than that. >> if mitt romney is not the republican nominee, how do they blow it? is it his to lose, number one? >> yes. he has the financing to stick this out. >> but what would it cost him? >> well, you just don't know. he's got to get through new hampshire. that's going to be -- he's got to run out in new hampshire clear and you want the other side to continue to be -- to diffuse itself so conservatives don't have one candidate. getting that one-on-one is what hurts him. they're nowhere near that. >> still thooz address, i believe, the mormon issue. they're fundamentalist christians who will not vote for a mormon. maybe he's been out there long enough. maybe he's been out there long enough and that's okay now. but i believe that's why his numbers are stuck at 25%. >> against obama? i don't think they'll vote for -- >> how does he -- >> he has to get the nomination. the nomination, as long as the
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conservatives stay divided on this, he can sustain this thing, he has the money. >> i have to leave it there. davis and frost, always great to you have. can wall street pick up where it left off? we'll get a market preview next. plus, fast and furious. republicans asked attorney general holder if he lied to congress about that controversial program that put guns in the hands of those mexican drug cartels. and herman cain's campaign manager is going to join me in studio to answer the question we've been asking all week, are they running a campaign that can get to the next level? today's trivia question. how many u.s. presidents have earned a phd? this is an easy one for old tom davis. tweet me the correct answer.
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we have encouraging news on the jobs front as we wait from friday's big unemployment report about september. andrew ross sorkin joins me now. the market run down. does that mean adp is out? >> adp is out. sfri the big number. adp coming out with 91,000 new jobs in the private sector. that's good news. the expectation was 75,000. so you can take that for what you will. i should also temper that by saying there was another report that came up earlier in the day, challenger. it noted that overall for the last month there was 115,000 jobs lost and 50,000 of those were from government jobs including the military. so there is a double-edged sword with this whole conversation of we want to shrink government and there is a lot of conversation about shrinking government but you're going to lose jobs while trying to reduce our own debt. so that's the big thing to
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watch. also by the way, apple stock. everybody is watching that after the iphone 4s, not the iphone 5. >> man, they're getting a lesson in politics. if you don't meet expectations, you end up losing in your poll ratings which in this case is your stock price. >> you're an iphone user of. >> you know, i'm not. >> you're an ipad user? >> i'm a blackberry guy. >> daily run down will be back in 30 seconds.
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nato is marking another damaging blow against insurgent forces in afghanistan. an air strike today killed a senior commander in the taliban-linked group in pakistan. blamed for coordinating attacks on afghan forces for moving weapons across the pakistani border. another march is planned in lower manhattan today. more demonstrators join the occupy wall street protest. organizers say the crowds could swell into the thousands as members of labor unions and community organizations join the demonstrations. in a new test today, the u.s. military says its defense system was able to successfully take out two different missiles fired around the same time. i think missile defense here. officials say it's a key step in efforts to protect u.s. interests against weapons fired from the air and the sea. and in illinois, a congressional seat will be open for the first time in more than two decades.
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jerry costello announced he'll not seek re-election. the state's republican party says winning control of the seat will be among its top priorities in 2012, one of the few swing states that might be still left after that massive redistricting that took place there. the prerepublicans are callo an investigation into eric holder to see if he misled congress about the controversial gun trafficking program known as fast and furious. holder testified about it in may 3rd. >> when did you first know about the program officially, i believe, called fast and furious, to the best of your knowledge, what date? >> i'm not sure of the exact date. i probably heard about fast and furious over the last few weeks. >> but newly released memos to holder mentioned the program as far back as last year. the fast and furious program was designed to track guns trafficked into mexico but thousands of the weapons disappeared later turning up in
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more than 150 crime")2
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to be fair, to be accurate, i guess i should say, the two memos that are at issue here, both mention fast and furious but do not mention the problems about letting guns walk. and that's what the justice department says is really the issue here. the attorney general also testified at an earlier hearing in march when he said that he had heard about the program about the problems with the program early in 2011. so it's -- the justice department says it's the two people talking past each other here. and the question really does remain unresolved which is when did senior officials at the justice department find out the thing was going wrong and what did they do about it? and we'll learn more about that when an inspector general report come out. but the attorney general has already taken some actions here. he said he doesn't want this to happen again. and because of his actions, the u.s. attorney is out in arizona, the u.s. attorney in phoenix who was in charge of the prosecutions here and two officials at atf there have been
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reassigned. >> to get fast and furious to have launched this program, did the atf and the u.s. attorney, did they need signoff by anybody at the justice department here if washington? >> you know, i don't know the answer to that question or whether they needed answers from people at the atf headquarters or whether it had a to go all the way to main justice. i don't know if there is something peculiar about this. but one thing that would have required that signoff, one of the things the justice department said is there was a similar, what they use a term gun walking. let guns walk across the border. a similar operation run out of arizona, not in phoenix, but in tucson in 2007 and 2008 in the bush administration. now it had never become public because it didn't have the disastrous consequences that fast and furious did. but they say that this was not the first time that atf tried this. >> all right. pete williams, our senior justice correspondent. pete, thanks very much.
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all right, back to the campaign. he has gone from the godfather's pizza guy to the 999 guy to now top tier guy. herman cain is the latest 2012 it guy. take a look at this video from a 1994 presidential town hall. >> this man is raising a very important question in terms of employment. but what if all your competitors were just like you, wouldn't you be able to do it then? >> okay. first of all, mr. president, with all due respect, your calculation on what the impact would do quite honest sly is incorrect. >> mark block is the man behind the man, herman cain's campaign manager and chief of staff. he joins me now. that is footage right after herman cain challenged then president clinton on this. the first calls to herman cain to get involved in republican politics began. is that fair? >> exactly. exactly. chuck, thanks for having me on today. that was the beginning of the
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explosion of herman cain across the country. what precipitated the exchange with cain then led into him being invited to give speeches all across the country to business groups and tea party groups and the grassroots across america. >> there's two types of -- three types of presidential candidates that we noticed over the last decade. ones that believe they can get the nomination. you have ones that are trying to get into the conversation and become leaders within their party. and then you have the ones that are simply trying to maybe have vanity run for themselves and make money. what is herman cain trying to do? i've known mr. cain for six years. if you know mr. cain, he is not running for second place. we have talked about this race for the last six years. and he fully intends to be the next president of the united states. >> so you've got this moment. this is actually the second time
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i would argue in the last nine months that there has been a sort of moment in time where the national spotlight, you know, the first time you searched in our poll was 3 1/2 months ago. you had double digits in there. it seemed as if you then flat lined. you weren't able to take advantage of the moment. why is this time going to be different? >> what happened after the south carolina debate led into a week later with the announcement in the centennial olympic park. we had a bump then. and what happened over the next 30, 45 days has bachmann got the bump out of new hampshire, perry came in and sucked the oxygen out of the air, we steadily climbed -- this has always been our strategy is not have this bubble that bursts but a steady climb since january when' announced the exploratory committee. and we have met every one of the metrics that we laid out and exceeded some of them. now we obviously have this big bounce coming out of florida. but it was also out of illinois
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this weekend and the national republican federation in kansas city. and we'll see if we continue this steady climb, we don't want a big bump just a steady climb. >> how do you defend that going to iowa for a month? >> i would say that we're running a wholesale campaign. iowa, new hampshire, south carolina are very important. but it's not the traditional campaign has been run in the past years. as an example, you call me the campaign manager. we don't have those titles in the organizations. the organization is structured like a corporation. mr. cain runs it like a corporation. we have no debt. the first and second ftc filings show no debt. so we will be in iowa and we'll be in new hampshire. but we're not running a one, two, or three-state strategy. really, to understand our strategy, chuck, is to read
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"audacity to win." >> and that is the book written by david pluff. what it is you learned out of his book that makes you think this is going to work in a republican primary? >> it's a long-term strategy. it's a very -- extremely intense delegate count strategy. it's the delegates that win this nomination. iowa and new hampshire and south carolina are important. but we're not betting the ranch just on those two states. >> how much money you are going to report in the ftc report? it's due in ten days. >> to be competitive. >> what does that mean? >> we won't have as much money as the other candidates. again, we have no debt. we're building staff. and we'll be able to be competitive zbhchlt how big is the staff right now? >> about 30 people across the country. >> and paid staffers in how many states? >> in five. >> okay. >> this is something that i don't think the typical political person understands.
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what you're seeing right now is an extension of what happened on april 15th of 2009 with the explosion of the tea party movement, the citizens movement, whatever you want to call it. this movement is deeper than any of us have any comprehension as evidenced by what happened if florida in the straw poll. we're seeing this everywhere we go. we have an organization in all 50 states. most of the organizations is from the ground up. and the message that mr. cain is delivering is economic message of 999 is simple. it's resonating. and you're going to see a lot more bold plans like that coming on. >> do you think that the most important fact about his biography is that he's never held elective office? >> yes. that -- when he gives a speech and he says that he's proud not to have ever held elective office is one of the biggest lines that he uses. standing ovations on many occasions. i think the american people are
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looking for a problem solver, a businessman with a proven record and somebody that hasn't been part of the problem. >> he has been tougher on rick perry than mitt romney. explain. >> it hasn't been by design at all. and i would disagree with you. i think that mr. cain not individually against governor romney but compares his 999 plan which is simple to governor romney's plan which is 157 pages and really takes one loophole and replaces it with another. >> when your path to the nomination does well, where do you win your first primarprimar? >> we need to do well in iowa. we need to do well in new hampshire. >> what is that? top three? >> top three. we need to come in first or second in south carolina which we feel very good about. we feel very good about florida, obviously. >> then you have to start winning.
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once you win one, then you have to be winning all the primaries? >> exactly. >> mark block, we'll be watching. your headquarters is in atlanta. i brought your bumper sticker. >> this is what is resonating across america right now. mr. cain can go through an airport and he's no longer the pizza guy. he's now the 999 guy. >> sort of fits with the pizza guy. >> yeah. >> sounds look a special. mark block, thanks for coming in. good to meet you. up next, with chris christie out of the race, what happens now? our hump day political panel is here to talk about which republican candidate can best capitalize on the christie absence. plus, the money race. should rick perry's texas sized fund-raising number have mitt romney shaking a little bit in his boots? first, "soup of the day." roasted red pepper. not just roasted red tomato and pepper. just pepper.
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the republican candidates wasted no time responding to chris christie's decision not to run. he became very popular. >> competition is it always a good thing. he would have been a very fine contender, an excellent competitor if he were in the race. >> the advice i had given by way of interviews, if his heart's not in it, he should not do it. >> whether governor christie is in or not, i have the same message. mr. governor paul lenty was in or not, hit same message. >> i wasn't sitting on pins and needles waiting for the reaction. call lean coowe have our pa us. okay. the chris christie hysteria is over. how is the new york media market going to handle it now? >> i know. we're falling apart, aren't we? >> what's going on here?
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there is no new yorker in the race. what are we going to do? >> i was hoping that you could play that song that you were playing earlier again if you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with. >> it's a crosby stills and nash song. >> i'm not old enough to know that, chuck. >> very nice. >> you know, did we really expect he would get in? there was a fever sort of building in the last few days. but i think now it's sort of all eyes are turning to mitt romney and what happens now. >> and, jennifer, this is what the race is. to me, it's romney versus perry or romney versus romney? >> i think it's romney versus romney. he has had the benefit of being the luckiest man in politics this time around. >> i find that was an interesting way you wrote that blog. >> he's had -- >> very lucky. >> or just good enough. he's had a series of frankly not very competent, not very impressive opponents who have fallen by the way side one by one.
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first tim pawlenty disappears and then michelle bachmann. you have to admire they're very focused. they're very determined. yesterday they spent the day on the phones calling in all that cash that chris christie was leaving on the table. they had their eye on the ball. he's getting a big speech on friday on foreign policy. they think they send the candidate out. he's impressive and polished and they're going to roll through the early primary. >> ultimately, the thing he hasn't answered yet is how is he going to handle it when there are millions of dollars hit him on the issue of health care? he's able to duck it. watch what he did yesterday in the town hall. >> you were a republican governor in mr. frank's state. they have characterized your program as junior obama care. what are you going to do? >> first of all, i know something about health care. for a couple reasons. one, i worked in health care in
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the private sector. and then, of course, as governor, i found that 8% of the people in our state didn't have insurance. and 92% did. i want to get the 8% insured. >> you know, david, it is remarkable. the question was tough, right? he's coming in here. you're junior obama care and drops barney frank's name, you know, just throw it in there and, yet, romney was able to dodge it. you can't do it on paid television ads. >> you're not. there is something very interesting about where romney is in this race. we know everything that we need to know about him that we don't like and yet he still is where he is. whether it's rick perry or a few of the other candidates, maybe herman cain now, we don't know everything there is to know. they haven't said everything will is to say. and with romney, he still has a quarter of the electorate despite romney care and despite everything else that doesn't appeal to the republican primary
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electora electorate. that tells me he's in a great position if he keeps focusing on the core strength, job, economy, health care, experience and his executive experience. if he gets to that point, one thung he cou thing he could run on is he's been a governor for four years. he's been in the private sector and he has the experience that maybe even a president doesn't have. that's all he has. now could it all fall apart? sure. rick perry can catch fire again. other candidates can eat into him. >> the last time i felt as if we saw a president get elected where the base fell in like, not in love, was richard nixon in '68. that is a hard thing to do when your base is only in like with you. >> it's a really hard thing to do. when you talk to the people at the white house, they expect that president obama will be running against mitt romney. they mitt romney. they think he will probably be the toughest opponent that they could possibly have, but there's a lot of glee right now when they look at how much trouble
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the republican party is having going against into voting booths and pulling that lever for him. >> it still means 75% aren't there. >> when you think about the fact that he's -- >> you're right about that, but again, we know everything you need to know about romney and yet he's been able to hang around. >> most people think he's the best possible chance that the republican party has of beating president obama and they still don't want to vote for him. >> we're going to talk more on that on the other side. stick around. trivia time. we asked how many u.s. presidents could be called doctor legitimately, earned a ph.d.. the answer was simply one. woodrow wilson earned a ph.d. in political science from john hopkins university in 1886. you're watching "the daily rundown" on msnbc. plan premium in the country... so you can focus on what really matters. call humana at 1-800-808-4003.
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let's bring back our panel. all right, helene, the president
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is on this tour going around country saying come on congress, pass my bill. and republicans go oh, yeah, see if you can get 53 democratic senators to support your bill and then we'll talk. >> it's a big conundrum for president obama. they still think they'll wrangle the democratic senators that they need. he's not even paying attention to that right now on the campaign trail. you're seeing a very angry, very fiesty president obama out there. yesterday he was in texas, a place -- a state that he doesn't have a player of winning in the election next year but he was there on a fund-raising jaunt and he took it to -- he really really -- you saw a very angry sort of president who was doing a lot of things that the people on the democratic base have been wanting him to do for a long time and saying why is he doing so much to compromise. you did not see a compromising style yesterday. >> david, is there any concern inside the republican leadership, particularly in the senate and you're right john
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cornyn and jim demint are finding peace with each other. is that a sign they are a little concerned they can't have too many internal divisions because if they do, they have got their own vulnerabilities to deal with with swing voters? >> well, i think republicans are very cognizant that the electorate isn't happy, the voters aren't happy and if they're not careful they might miss an opportunity to take back the senate majority which is there for them. but i don't think they're actually concerned that president obama is going to improve his standing enough that this jobs bill is going to change the equation such that that is going to cause them a problem. i just think they're trying to play this very smart. there's a lot of confidence among republicans in the senate because there aren't the democratic votes for the jobs bill as it stands. >> jennifer, you do get the sense that republicans are concerned. they don't want to become the punching bag all year round. congressional republicans know they have to work with him -- they have to find whatever that minimum is in their minds. do they know that? >> i think they do.
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that's why you hear eric cantor talk about we have to extract those elements there's common agreement on. every time they get a chance and they put forth their list of job things on the republican side so they can go to the voters -- >> why haven't they introduced their own version of the bill. >> i think you're going to see that. you're going to see them extracting elements. >> and putting them in a bill. >> and say we'll vote for these moments. >> it's shameless plug time. i'm start with the most dapperly dressed person. >> my shameless plug is jim demint and john cornyn have buried the hatchet from last cycle. they feel like they have a lot in common for 2012 and it might just be because the political atmospherics are tea party is in, establishment is out. >> are they at odds in the texas republican primary? >> i suppose it would be too shame fols me to plug my book again. >> for, never. >> maureen dowd's column is a
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must-read. >> i'm much more shameless. i'm going to plug the james madison high school marching band, the pride of virginia, came in third in the bands of america competition east coast. he plays the synthesizer because oboes don't march. >> i am way over. stay tuned for chris jansing. don't forget andrea at 1:00. bye-bye. i'd race down that hill without a helmet. i took some steep risks in my teens. i'd never ride without one now. and since my doctor prescribed lipitor, i won't go without it for my high cholesterol
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