tv News Nation MSNBC March 26, 2012 11:00am-12:00pm PDT
we're following two big breaking news stories. one month after trayvon martin's death, his parents respond to new reports just out by police. and attorneys for george zimmerman that trayvon martin attacked the neighborhood watch volunteer. new accounts that they are alleging today. also, the first audio release from the supreme court as justices hear arguments about the constitutioniality of president obama's landmark health care law. i'm tamron hall. the "news nation" is following this breaking news in the trayvon martin case. trayvon martin's parents are about to address new allegations about their son as today marks one month since the unarmed 17-year-old was shot by a neighborhood watch captain in sanford, florida. a spokesperson for the family has confirmed to msnbc a report that appeared in the orlando
sentinel that trayvon martin had been suspended from his miami school after being found with an empty bag, a marijuana bag, as it is being described. the paper also reported today, police said zimmerman claimed martin hit him and then climbed on top of him, slamming his head repeatedly on the sidewalk. meantime, we're just two hours away from another massive rally and march, starting at a sanford park. protesters include high profile civil rights activists and some professional athletes who are joining in among the everyday citizens concerned about this case. they'll go to the city commission meeting in sanford where trayvon martin's parents will speak. we're expecting them to speak around 5:00. joining me now, joy ann, the msnbc contributor. you see she is on her way to this rally. i have to start with the developing news right now. we know that trayvon martin's parents will talk about this new report regarding that he was suspended from school.
what we are seeing now, obviously in both sides of this. one side now trying to make george zimmerman appear to be the person they say they know. and you have information now coming out reportedly about trayvon martin's background as well. >> reporter: i think it is a little bit troubling. i think what you're seeing is the pushback on the part of people who support george zimmerman. the pushback appears to be to bring down the image of trayvon martin. to try to prevent him from appearing to be a mart he. he is the person who was killed. and i think it is irrelevant. if he was being pursued by george zimmerman, i'm not sure what his past or being suspended from school has to do with that. i think you'll see a lot of supporters of trayvon martin not happy about the idea of trying to sort of besmirch his image. >> you can imagine the family will talk about that. to your point, joy-ann, you have this suspension that the family
has confirmed but you also have a 2005 mug shot of georgia zimmerman. i'm not trying to compare crime to crime or offense to offense, we know if there is going to be digging around, that question about the behavior that was allegedly exhibited by george zimmerman toward an officer of the law in 2005 is something that people would likely, including journalists, dig into as well. even though those charges was dropped. there were some reasons those were the allegations out there. >> reporter: absolutely. that's more relevant. that is something that goes to the idea of violence. the bottom line is, what happened in that altercation on february 26? what trayvon may have done in school in the past is irrelevant. whereas potential violence on the part of george zimmerman seems to be the case. >> tell me with the folks on this bus. why have they decided to join in
today? >> reporter: this is a bus that was chartered by the urban league of palm beach koinl. so they're heading down from west palm beach, up, really to sanford to be a part of this huge march. there could be tens of thousands of people at the city commission meeting. and i want to talk first to cedric thomas. he is actually a city commissioner in the west palm beach area. if you want to tell us, mr. thomas, why are you here? why do you think this is important? >> this is important because we have a community with a lot of youth that fit that age description of the deceased. and it's a serious matter. we have to bring light to this matter. it is an injustice that has happened and we will not stand for it. and we're going to continue to fill buses and continue to make our presence known so that commission knows, this is unsatisfactory and we need to do something about it. >> reporter: thank you. you can see a lot of young people on this bus. they are back there. you can see we have all ages on
this bus here and they're all going for one reason. that's to seek justice for trayvon martin. >> all right. thank you, joy-ann reid. and the rally comes. the attorney along with friends say they've known for ten years who spoke out on the "today" show this morning. >> george zimmerman suffered a broken nose, injuries to the back of his head and signs of a scuffle, a grass stain on the back of his shirt. >> george was acting as a neighborhood watch captain in a neighborhood that had been violated by a number of crimes. and that's why he was watching and saw someone that he didn't recognize. >> with me now from miami, kendall coffey, u.s. attorney for the state of florida. thank you for joining us again. let me talk to you about some of the developments here regarding, let's start with the photograph. the first photograph as you well know of mr. zimmerman was 2005 when he was accused of
assaulting a law enforcement officer. we now have a picture of him. i believe it is a work i.d. smiling very different there. tell me about the strategy you think is happening there. >> obviously, zimmerman has been getting pounded in the court of public opinion so his attorney, perhaps, very appropriate way. if you're the defendants lawyer, you're trying to level the playing field. and the defense is mounting a counter campaign and he is doing it without having his client go anywhere near reporters or the tv camera. really good idea. so the lawyer is getting out there, talking about some of the details which include, according to him that zimmerman had a broken nose. that his head was gashed. he's also got a surrogate, not george himself, but that he is a good guy. it is not enough to change nick's mind but it may start to change the conversation a little bit so at least from zimmerman's standpoint, people understand, there are some alleged facts on the other side. >> let me ask you this. and i'm sure you do not know the
answer but we both have eyes. we can see the friend that was presented is a person of color. obviously, race is a big part of this investigation. the friend saying on the "today" show that george zimmerman in his opinion is not a racist. would not act in that way based on race. is it a coincidence here that the friend is a person of color? that the attorney has presented here for the public opinion? >> of course not. that's part of the strategy that the defense lawyer is launching, to try to say that zimmerman is not a racist. look at this friend of his. and meanwhile, there are other reports going on, news reports saying that there could have been an eyewitness. if there was an eyewitness that backs up zimmerman's account, then that becomes much more significant, frankly, than what zimmerman's friend looks like or what his lawyer has to say. >> let me ask you, the eyewitness is an anonymous eyewitness here. if the police office order duty who shows up at this scene is taking this report or even later
on, if this person then came to the police station, how unusual is it that the person would be anonymous in the police report. >> i'm mystified as to why you would keep a witness's identification concealed at this point. and i'm also surprised that this came out a month after the shooting. one way or another, the reality will be that the special prosecutor appointed this case. forget what i'm saying on tv. certainly what zimmerman's lawyers are saying. talk to that eyewitness, whoever he or she may be. that could be the key to whether george zimmerman faces serious charges. >> we're also hearing new reports about what zimmerman's attorney says that he was told happen. he said that zimmerman got out of the suv to follow trayvon on foot when a dispatch employee asked zimmerman if he was following the 17-year-old, which we know. he was told he didn't need to do. that we're told zimmerman turned around. he lost sight somehow of trayvon martin.
he was back to his suv. he claims that he was approached from the left rear and then they exchanged words. and this is when he says, trayvon martin punched him and he had a broken nose. we should also note, he did not get medical care until the next day. now if these injuries were as serious as a broken nose, which if anybody has had one, they know that's not a walk in the park. would you as an attorney inquire as to why, a, we're just hearing this, and b, why did not he get medical attention? this all started with the allegation of just wet t-shirt on the back. some kind of grass on his back. >> plebnty of questions. there is a gap where we know that zimmerman was pursuing trayvon martin. then all of a sudden imaginally, zimmerman is the one being pursued. i'm very, very kept cal about that and it is very critical as to whether a successful self-defense will be presented someday if charges are brought to know who initiated the confrontation.
who was really the aggressor here? >> let me ask you real quick. i have to get your reaction to a new report that trayvon martin had been suspended from school after an empty bag of marijuana, which again, if it's empty, how do you know it's marijuana? we'll work to get more details on this. this empty bag. this school has zero tolerance. this again 30 days later is coming to light. his parents confirm he was suspended. what do you make of this? is this again a part of the attorney for mr. zimmerman or is this just digging into the background of trayvon martin? what's happening here? >> whoever it is coming from, it completely irrelevant and the classic example of trying to put the alleged victim on trial. it is much more significant to look at what we've been seeing and reading about the background of zimmerman. not the least of which is the 2005 arrest for battery and resisting arrest of a law enforcement officer. >> thank you for your time. we'll be to you. and later, how some on the right have pounded on president
obama's comments when he said, if he had a son, he would look like trayvon. newt gingrich called it disgraceful. we'll talk with toure. saying that trayvon wearing a hoodie played a role in his death. we've got some news at the supreme court. the first audio has been released from the first of three days of arguments on the constitutionality of president obama's signature health care law. we've set the stage for you. 26 states, a national business group and some individuals are challenging the laws's central requirement that all americans must get health care insurance. today, whether they even have the right to hear the case. tomorrow the attorney will argue the so-called individual mandate. we've talked about it. whether congress can force people to buy health insurance. on wednesday, the justices will consider if the court strikes down part of the law, is the whole law invalid? and second, is the requirement that state's exhibit panned con?
pete williams was inside the high court chamber to watch the arguments. we have this you had a over as well. what more can you tell us on what's happening today? >> reporter: you're right. the question was can the court even hear the case? if you don't buy insurance, as the health care law says, then you have to pay a penalty. it is paid on your 1040 tax form. it is collected by the irs and it is based on your income. is it a tax? if it is a tax, some courts have that, then the supreme court can't hear this case now because of a 150-year-old law that says you cannot challenge a tax law in advance. so there were two questions for the supreme court today. what is that 150-year-old law mean? does it bar the supreme court from having jurisdiction? that is to say the ability to their case? secondly, is this a tax? listen to justice steven briar here who seems to say one thing about the law but another thing about whether it is a tax. >> i accept pretty much.
i'm probably leaning in your favor on jurisdiction. where i see the problem is in the second part. because the second part says, restraining the assessment or collection of any tax. here, congress has nowhere used the word tax. >> so he says in the entire health care law, the word tax doesn't show up once. the congress was very careful to repeatedly call this a penalty and not a tax. i must say judging from the oral argument, it seemed like the majority of the court is with him on that. whatever their view may be of this 150-year-old law, it is not going to matter because the health care law fundamentally is not a tax. the court seems to me to be very nearly unanimous on that question. so i think that won't be a show stopper and they'll go on to decide the main event which is the constitution at of the individual mandate. >> thank you for your live report. as i understand it, trayvon martin's parents have just started their news conference.
let's go to it. >> i simply want to start off very clearly. very clearly. whatever trayvon martin was suspended for had absolutely no bearing on what happened on the night of february 26th. we told you previously when you asked questions that he wasn't suspended for anything violent and he wasn't suspended for anything criminal. and if he and his friends experimented with marijuana, that is still completely irrelevant to george zimmerman killing their son on the night of february 26th. it is one of those things that the family said, what does that have to do with him killing my son? what does it matter? and that is one of the reasons they continue to say, it is
irrelevant and we say today that it is completely irrelevant with trayvon martin suspended on february 26th. once again, law enforcement is attempting to demonize and blame the victim by releasing bits and pieces of their ongoing investigation that they feel will help build zimmerman's claim up. it is irrelevant. completely irrelevant. the most important thing -- this whole tragedy. the most important thing in this whole tragedy is that george zimmerman disobeyed the police dispatcher and went and stopped and pursued, in what proved to
be a fatal encounter. we're now going to hear from mr. tracy martin and then reverend sharpton and reverend jackson. mr. martin? >> good afternoon. i would just like to say that even in death, and trayvon is gone. he will not be returning to us. even in death, they are still disrespecting my son. and i feel that's a shame. >> the only comment that i have right now is that they've killed my son and now they're trying to kill his reputation.
>> let me say when we first got involved in this case, the day the police chief announced there would be no arrest for probable cause. i had a very candid and open conversation with the attorneys and then with the parents. and we haven't been involved in many of these cases. all of the particular issues that they may try to raise. we saw them as irrelevant then. we see them as irrelevant now. i said to the parents, as much as it will hurt, they will try to make your son a junky, a thief, everything else before this is over because they've done it in every case we've
fought. the only thing that is relevant is what mr. zimmerman knew that day. if mr. zimmerman had no knowledge, he had no reason to do anything. if he did have knowledge, the only thing he had the reason to do was to call the police and turn that in. we're dealing with a self-pointed watch guy who disobeyed the dispatcher's instructions that he agreed to. all else is irrelevant. if you want to discuss something relevant, discuss what zimmerman might have had in his system. discuss his past. mr. zimmerman was not tested. trayvon was. let's examine why we had a test on the victim, rather than the one that was aggressive. let's not play this double standard of trying to demonize
who is dead and sanitize who was the cause of the death. >> the central issue in this case is race profiling. it happens across the country, whether by police, or judges, by bankers, by home foreclosures, we must end the racial profiling that set him up in the first place. we know that mr. zimmerman should not have pursued him and he did. should not have killed him and he did. and there is no basis for a man over another man's death with a gun cannot be arrested and processed until there is clarity. even today, the killer is free.
even today, there is no inclination to arrest a killer. the same police department saw on film a homeless man being beaten. and the beater walked away. the same criminality within that infrastructure of that police department remains today. let me say lastly, this issue of race profiling and misconduct. it's painful in the case of trayvon but it is not unique. it is more universal. we feel this pain all over the country. why must we all be involved? i have three sons. jesse jackson jr. bought him a car. he was profiled, why would a young black man have a car? his parents gave it to him.
he had to stand before the public and be humiliated. another son. university of virginia lawyer going between washington and charlottesville. stopped over and over again, why are you going to charlottesville? another son at northwestern university. stopped and handcuffed. why are you in this neighbor? you don't live here? this process lends itself to gross injustice. mr. zimmerman should be arrested. the law of stand your grounds should be repealed. just as the voter i.d. law should be repealed for the same finances for both of them. in a real sense, the blood of this martyr has illuminated the darkness and we shall maintain our vigilance and our action until justice is done. i would hope given this across the country, this is a time to
have that mature -- this is the time to revive the civil rights commission that we might have measurement of where we are and not just anecdotes. a time to revive the current commission report that we might have a real picture. why must we have it? the moral flaw of our society is racial injustice. racial injustice must be eliminated. racial injustice, equality, workers rights, the american dream goes hand in hand. we thank god for using at this easter season, trayvon's illuminating the darkness. the central message is this. you don't have to be guilty to be crucified. if you're pursuing the right thing, god will resurrect above all laws. this has given us another opportunity to address this. >> have you filed a civil lawsuit against the neighborhood
association? >> no, we have not. and we don't know how that got out other than taken out of contech. we have been very vigilant just trying to get an arrest. we can't even look at any of that stuff until we can get the facts out and get an arrest. >> trayvon initiated the violence. are they inaccurate? >> based on the 911 tapes. he is chasing trayvon. the phone call is 7:12. that's when the incoming call came in. we gave you the phone records. it clearly says, she called him at 7:12. she talks four minutes. at 7:17, the police get there. trayvon is shot and killed on the ground. she connects the dots as to what happened. she hears the encounter between trayvon and zimmerman.
she is the last one to hear trayvon martin alive. and she connects the dots. investigators are planning to interview her immediately. >> can you all address this idea that trayvon martin, they said he initiated the attack. but they also said that he jumped on top of zimmerman. he beat his head into a sidewalk. is this something that you know him to be capable of doing? >> his parents talked over and over again. trayvon was an average kid. he was one of those kids who had never, ever demonstrated any violence. had never even gotten in a fight in school. it is one of those situations that zimmerman is alive and can say whatever. trayvon is dead and can't defend himself. what we do know is trayvon was walking home that night and had zimmerman not disobeyed the police dispatcher and got out of his car and pursued trayvon,
trayvon would still be living today. that's what we do know. let me just say this. from the last three questions, this is why we rallied. that's why we march and that's why we're coming back easter weekend. why are we asking about what trayvon is capable of? when you have records of zimmerman assaulting law enforcement officers. you have domestic violence. no one asked his lawyer about his character that has been documented. he is the one on the 911 tape that made a commitment. that he was not going to follow. he followed him. he has the record of violence. so why are we going out of our way to try and create something in trayvon's background when you have documented stuff in zimmerman's background and won't even question his attorney about it? >> if i'm walking down the
street going home, an african-american male, and someone seeks to engage me in a conversation without a badge or a uniform, and seeks to engage me and threaten on arrest me with a gun, i have some obligation to protect myself. why should he be pursued in the first place? in his own neighborhood? mr. trayvon was heading home. where was zimmerman headed? and why was they in the first place? i really hope that we will not -- i cannot help but think as he walks the street free today, who didn't have on a hood was killed within three weeks, there was a trial. a 67-minute deliberation. the killers walked free,
acquitted. another one shot down in cold blood. a killer for 30 years walked free. today the killer of trayvon martin walks free. i hope we don't have to go through an attempt to do in the newsroom what should happen in a courtroom. a trial that's orderly and fair and comprehensive. thank you very much. >> thank you, thank you. >> as you just heard, we were listening in to a news conference with trayvon martin's mother and father as well as the reverend al sharpton, reverend jesse jackson as they prepare for a march in a couple of hours. i have with me toure. i believe that this is another may know moment in this case. this is one month to the day, toure, that trayvon martin was killed. and we had kendall coffey, he is
the form he u.s. attorney for the state of florida. if you don't get that, that means he is a big lawyer, was a big lawyer in the state. a prosecutor for the state. he says this suspension of trayvon martin that was revealed in the paper today. that he was suspended for having what was described as an empty marijuana baggy is irrelevant to this case. trayvon martin's mother just said, they are killing my son over again. his father said, even in death, they still disrespect my son. what does this moment mean? these parents are there now defending their son? and we have no answers on what happened that day 30 days ago. >> from the beginning, his parents have been extraordinary human beings in the most difficult moment of their lives. what we see from the 911 call tlurk the nonarrest.
through the nonprosecution of this case. a continued attempt to dehumanize trayvon. he doesn't matter. he is a worthless person and we can kill him. we don't to have prosecute it. his parents have been so human and showed so much character and showed so much complexity and strength, that they are giving humanity to him and demanding the world look at him and say if these are his parents, we have to take this person seriously. and slowly, painfully slowly with all deliberate speed. things are happening. the lawyer told nebj saturday night in a skype that he expects an arrest will happen. he is pessimistic about hate crime charges but he expects an arrest will happen. we are inching toward perhaps something. i think we have to expect something, some arrest will happen this week. >> kendall coffey is with us live. as i said to the former u.s. attorney from florida.
at lo a lot of things about this case. i've worried about whether it will divide people. i'm going to tell you this. i think this marijuana baggy part of this equation and you saying this is not relevant and there are so many other more important things that need to be answered are the kinds of things that turn anger into something that goes awry. there are many facts out there that still need to be digested and understood from whether or not there was a broken nose to why did the man go to the hospital the second day. we can look at this objectively but we know there is emotion. help me process why that would be relevant. i'm not saying brush it under the table but what's going on here? >> what's going on is classic defense strategy in defending your client who may be going on trial someday. you try to put the alleged victim on trial. you see it in different ways but a classic example is trashing somebody's reputation with thing
that are irrelevant. there is no way that trayvon martin had anything to do with why that gun was exercised and why he was shot to death. there is no way that any judge is going to let that kind of circumstance in front of a jury in a court of law. but it is out there. it is getting out there and it is the kind of thing that has a little traction. not in a court of law but sometime in the court of public opinion. as you pointed out very thoughtfully a few moments ago. is the kind of thing that makes this case start to divide us. and i'm already sensing, there will be more and more divisions within the public as we look at this emotional case. >> all right. thank you for sticking around and giving your reaction to this. toure, you'll be back with me to talk about the politics of all this. why newt gingrich and some others have gone after the president after he said that if he had a son, he would look like trayvon. why that would ever set off a political debate. you're going to come back and
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we continue to follow the breaking news in the killing of trayvon martin. his parents spoke out moments ago after reports that he had been suspended from school after an empty so call marijuana bag was found on him. a family spokesperson confirmed the information. the family speaking out. they feel their son is being turned from the victim into a criminal. >> even in death, they are still disrespecting my son. and i feel that is the same. >> they've killed my son and now they're trying to kill his reputation. >> meanwhile, the public presidential candidates are all calling the situation tragic. two of them are going after president obama for his comments he made friday. newt gingrich says the president is turning it into a racial
issue. >> what the president said in a sense is disgraceful. it is not a question of who that young man looked like. any young american of any ethnic background should be safe. period. and trying to turn it into a racial issue is fundamentally wrong. i find it appalling. >> those two comments are really irresponsible. i would consider them irresponsible. >> with me now, toure. let me play what president obama said on friday regarding trayvon martin. >> my main message is to the parents of trayvon martin. if i had a son, he would look like trayvon. i think they are right to expect that all of us as americans are going to take this with the seriousness it deserves.
>> and toure, in a million years, did you think after the president said this comment, it would turn into something that some conservatives have tried to pounce? >> i'm not surprised that gingrich and others have tried to make this a political football because they seem to be dealing with this issue in a very heartless and unpresidential way. the president's comments were very humane and beyond just that he is black like me, there is a great, there is some resemblance that trayvon could have been perhaps obama's son in some sort of way. it is a very humane and presidential response. gingrich's response, on the other hand, is in itself appalling and disgusting and trying to divide, as you were referring to before and trying to say this is not a racial issue. it is absolutely a racial issue. should all children be safe? absolutely. but black children, and this is not the first time we've seen this, are struggling in this country to not be shot as they walk down the street not committing a crime and then to have their shooters not
prosecuted, that is a problem that we are dealing with. that is not a national problem. >> rick santorum was on a radio program a short time ago. apparently he criticized president obama for bringing race into the trayvon case when it wasn't the president who brought race in. he said it sounds like a heinous act. to introduce this type of rhetoric that is clearly men to bring up these very serious issues is out of line for this president. it is a very, very unfortunate that he seizes upon this horrific thing where families are suffering and inject the type of divisive rhetoric. that to me is one of the disappointing parts of what this president has brought to the table. >> what world are they living in that the president is introducing the device of rhetoric that is not already a huge part of this conversation? that a black boy is killed and nobody is prosecuted for it. that is already part of the national discourse that is happening everywhere all the time right now for a month since he was killed. >> what is it, toure.
you have this article written by a writer from the daily caller. saying they have previously refrain from commenting following demands by the new black panthers and others on the scene in sanford, florida, that the white house got involved. obama jumped into the fight. a, no one knows who the black panthers are but this daily caller and maybe one other cable network. with that said, what do you believe here? and i often go to you. you're like a mini sociologist. why the need to do this? why not say this is wrong. we stand with whatever is right. let the courts, whatever you need to say. why try to pick up on this race thing? >> we're so divided at least in washington, that whatever a democrat says or whatever the president says, must be wrong. if the president says it is morning at 9:00 a.m., the conservatives must say no, he's wrong. when the president tries to say it's a racial issue.
and he said it very delicately. this is the language he said. that he is not going to overracialize things. he is going to underracialize it. and he does it and they say he's making it worse. he is dividing us. that is not what's going on at all. >> who does that newt gingrich comment and maybe even rick santorum comment, who are they appealing to? >> i think the people who would not necessarily care about trayvon martin. they clearly don't see a need to stand up for trayvon marine and his family in a presidential sort of way. in a national leader sort of way. that we others are doing. i don't think they see that there is any gain in supporting trayvon martin's case and his movement. they can disrespect it. >> real quick. we're out of time. i had someone tweet. as i said, and the attorney said, that this marijuana or suspension thing is irrelevant, why are we still talking about it? >> the media is having a lot of
these issues. stand your ground is not part of the situation. jeb bush who signed it into law admitted, so we're getting off on a lot of red herrings. >> it gave trayvon martin's chance to say you are dehumanizing my son. >> and it put them on the defensive. they have to say, we have to -- the hoodie is a red herring. the marijuana is a red herring. stand your ground is a red herring. we have to stay focused on the issue that a boy who was innocent was killed and his shooter, admitted shooter, has not been prosecuted. >> thank you very much. rick santorum has taken his campaign to the steps of the u.s. supreme court where the justices began hearing argument today on whether president obama's health care law is constitutional. santorum used the opportunity to draw a contrast between himself and mitt romney on the law, calling romney unqualified to challenge president obama on the issue. despite the former governor now vowing to repeal the obama health care law, it is similar to the one that as you well
know, romney enacted in massachusetts. in fact, listen to how president obama's senior adviser described romney's connection. >> mitt romney is the godfather of our health care plan. okay? if he is president, remarkably, he is running away from that past and he is going to say he's going to try to throw all this away. we'll have a big fight about health care again. >> let's bring in our political analyst. and jimmy williams, a democratic strategist. thank you both. the godfather line was a pretty good line, whether you agree with it or not, a.b. but nonetheless, it does give rick santorum another opportunity to really swing at mitt romney here as we watch to see what the supreme court does. >> i agree. i think this was the winning message for rick santorum that he never picked up on. he started with it months ago and dropped it when he needed it the most to win these big states in the midwest. michigan, ohio, illinois.
he started talking about other things. the evils of college education. we've talked about that before. and he really let it go. he sees now in this final hour when he is about to permanently lose wisconsin on april 3, or if he buys himself three more weeks until the big day on i am a 24th. rick santorum is running out of steam. this was the winning message to appeal to all parts of the republican party. even those who don't agree with rick santorum on social issues. i think that he is going out at this week really hard. i think it is a little too late. >> do you think it's too late? you have some who believe. i was listening to morning joe. who believed that wisconsin is within rick santorum's grip. if timing is everything, this does give him a big platform, the supreme court, nonetheless, to be able to go after romney on the health care law that he signed and supported. >> people will be completely shocked by this but rick santorum was right. he is right that mitt romney
wrote the original bill. barack obama tinkered with it. signed it into law. and now here we are. rick santorum is still not winning. the republican nomination delegate down right now. wisconsin could be his last great hope. i don't know that he wins there. his margin in louisiana was bigger than i thought it was going to be considering we're this late in the race. but i think he is, he is kind of out of state. i've counted out trul santorum ten times now and i've counted out newt gingrich ten times now. guess what, they're both still in the race. >> let me bring up what politico has. it was originally supported by republicans, a.b. they say the individual mandate did not even come up until late in the process of the bill itself. that originally the republican opposition was to how much it would cost and the public option, but not the individual mandate. and it wasn't until an op ed came out and some of the teem
members jumped on this idea. how will the republicans fight that this was once something, they sure thought it was a good idea? >> they've been reminded about this for years, as i'm sure you've seen newt gingrich has been put on the spot about it. so was mitt romney. it was an idea born from the heritage foundation years ago. a conservative idea. a way to protect the taxpayer by stopping free riders. and making sure that everyone bought insurance so the taxpayer would not be footing the bill. but there is many things about the health care bill. the expansion of medicaid is also offensive to conservatives. they see that as another explosion of the growth of government. the mandate they so object to now, they say means the hand of government will reach into everywhere if this is upheld by the supreme court. and you know, they fire up their base that way. the base support will go nuts if
the law is upheld and the mandate is upheld and i think it will help them in the election. it will bring more energy to the voting booth. >> and real quick, we're almost out of time. i want to get your thoughts. the same political article i mentioned to a.b., getting the supreme court of the obama administration. i believe the word they used was lack luster in really touting this. even when vice president joe biden the other week talked about the accomplishments. it is as if members of the party run from, or the administration run from this health care law that they so believe and fought for. >> it's interesting. the obama campaign team, and the obama white house has a serious flaw. they've had one for almost three years now. which is, they cannot communicate what this bill actually does and then disseminate that out widely. but there is a very fascinating part to this health care bill. it said to private insurance companies all across the united states of america. you have 22 million brand new customers that have to pay you. i can't think of anything that
is less liberal and less governmental than that particular issue. now, a.b. is right on the medicaid expansion part. to tell the private insurance industry that there is no public option and we're going to give you 22 million new customers. i would think that republicans would be shouting from the roof tops at how great and free market that is. >> all right. a.b., jimmy, thank you. we'll be right back. prego. prego?! but i've been buying ragu for years. [ thinking ] i wonder what other questionable choices i've made? [ club scene music ] [ sigh of relief ] [ male announcer ] choose taste. choose prego. what ? customers didn't like it. so why do banks do it ? hello ? hello ?! if your bank doesn't let you talk to a real person 24/7, you need an ally. hello ?
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checks, newspapers, bills. a lot of people get their medications only through the mail. small businesses depend on this processing plant. they want to shut down 3000 post offices, cut 100,000 jobs. they're gonna be putting people out of work everywhere. the american people depend on the postal service. i'm chuck todd coming up at the top of the hour. the president's signature legislative accomplish many is on trial. we're live here from the supreme court. we'll break down day one. set up day two. plus we'll tell you about rick santorum's wild weekend. it is not yet over. this week nbc is teaming one the u.s. chamber of commerce for a hiring our heroes campaign to
help our nation's veterans get back to work. the unemployment rate for vets hit 12.1% last year. almost three points higher than the national average. joining me now, iraq war vet, chairman of the group iraq vets.org. tell me about the challenges men and women returning home are facing to get a job? we can they're equipped with the best training you can find. >> i think that we're seeing the most problems with the national guard and reservists. unlike any other prior, our government reserves are deploying every fourth or fifth year to the war zone. if you're a bartender or a waitress or a small business and maybe your job got sent overseas, you come home, there is no job to come home to. these troops in transition. we're having a hard time in washington, d.c. right now. public sector jobs across this country are being attacked and these are the types of jobs that guards and reservists relied.
on you can see here at the capital. you can see senator lieberman going after the united states postal service. they're the second largest employer of veterans in our country and it doesn't get any better across the country. he opposed giving veterans the ability to get preference in applying for state education jobs. it is a problem from that standpoint as well. >> and let me find out from you. we know that the obama administration looked for initiatives to i guess, in a sense, reward companies that are willing to hire vets. how has that been received, at least as far as what you're hearing from the vets coming back. >> i think everyone is in the sector. i would sit here and think, your network at nbc for promoting this issue because it is so important. there are a lot of people looking for ways to help employ veterans. our foundation has signed on to a system america wants you which is a not for profit.
they've teamed up with monster.com. about 35,000 jobs at the america wants you website and the various organizations help connect them. so i think there are a lot of people trying to, would. there's real benefit to hire veterans. the public wants veterans to have jobs and i think that there's a lot of people working to help lower the unemployment rate of veterans right now. we're still in the early stages of this he said demmic. >> thank you very much. great having you on. thank you for your service. we'll be right back. certainly remember you can join the "news nation" on our facebook page. [ artis brown ] america is facing some tough challenges right now. two of the most important are energy security and economic growth. north america actually has one of the largest oil reserves in the world. a large part of that is oil sands. this resource has the ability to create hundreds of thousands of jobs. at our kearl project in canada, we'll be able to produce these oil sands with the same emissions as many other oils
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have been treated for heart failure, or if, while on enbrel, you experience persistent fever, bruising, bleeding, or paleness. [ phil ] get back to the things that matter most. ask your rheumatologist if enbrel is right for you. [ doctor ] enbrel, the number one biolog medicine prescribed by rheumatologists.
why? i thought jill was your soul mate. no, no it's her dad. the general's your soul mate? dude what? no, no, no. he's, he's on my back about providing for his little girl. hey don't worry. e-trade's got a totally new investing dashboard. everything is on one page, your investments, quotes, research... it's like the buffet last night. whatever helps you understand man. i'm watching you. oh yeah? well i'm watching you, watching him. [ male announcer ] try the new 360 investing dashboard at e-trade. good afternoon. i'm chuck todd. it's monday, march 26th. the supreme court has taken