tv The Cycle MSNBC June 29, 2012 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
the numbers whiz that helped form romneycare and obamacare. what mr. mandate says now about his signature model. all that and the week that was for "the cycle." the show for friday, june 29th begins right now. good tuesday to you. welcome to "the cycle." the gang's all here. we begin with the giant waldo canyon fire burning in colorado. the most destructive in history. 35,000 evacuated. one person dead. a handful of people allowed back home but only 15% of the fire is contained. it could take weeks, even months, to put it out. right now president obama is meeting with fire crews about 60 miles south of denver. nbc's jinah kim is in colorado springs. you've talked to residence. what do you hear that they want to hear from the president?
>> reporter: well, so i was here yesterday when we had quite an interesting press briefing toure. we have them twice day. at one of the ones yesterday, several residents showed up and they were really fired up. as you can imagine. when a community this size, even though it's the second largest city in colorado, there are only 400,000 residents here in colorado springs. 346 homes went up in flames. that's so many people, andç that's such a huge proportion of the community here. they were just really upset. very emotional, and a meeting last night where they were told the bad news. whose home, still standing. who whose are not. you can bet the president is getting an earful. colorado seems to be ground zero for the summer wildfires. every year the state seems to be struck hard. nine massive wildfires throughout the state. 200,000 acres and counting burned so far this year alone.
they'll have people for more resources and what he can do for us if re-elected. >> do you have any idea if this is a natural fire or if this is arson? >> reporter: well, that is a good question. the fbi was brought into this case which is kind of interesting, because the fire department usually handles its own cause investigation. but the fbi has been brought in, and the suspicion is that because in the past couple of weeks we've had just a rash of arson fires in the county, just west of here, the county bordering here is a county that apparently was able to confirm all of the little fires set in the past couple of weeks were arson. we suspect that may be a reason why officials are bringing in an investigative agency like the fbi to see if this is indeed arson. you can imagine, it's just too hat for people to go in and look at this now. yesterday at the fire briefing officials did a call out to all the people here in colorado and said, if anybody has any video of the first plume of smoke
going up, we want to knowd]!q that is. so they can look at it, try to pinpoint where that first point of smoke went up and they'll go straight there to see what may have sparked this. >> fascinating. jinah kim, thanks for your reporting. back to the other major story of the day -- krystal, the floor is yours. after yesterday's supreme court decision, the question now turns to the states. how will they handle such a broad-reaching law? the supreme court has given some latitude. joining us now, texas attorney general greg abbott, who sued to overturn the entire health care law the day was enacted. sir, thank you so much for joining us. >> thank you, krystal. >> i know where you stand on this. you're obviously an opponent of the president's health care law but was wondering if you could give insight. texas has one in four residents uninsured, highest rate in the nation. the supreme court is basically giving your state a choice. go forward with the full
medicaid expansion, applying to about 2. texans or stand on principle and say we don't want any part thafr and will continue with what we have now. how is that decision going to be made in texas? >> well, krystal, if you look at this entire picture there are three slices to it. the legal, the policy and the political. as the attorney general of texas, i've been in charge of the legal picture. filing a lawsuit based not on these policy considerations, because, frankly if in texas as well as across the country, we all agree that we can do a better job of providing access to health care for all americans. but that was really not the issue in the lmmu%q that was decided yesterday, and infed is we were focused on the legal rule of law to prevent congress from violating the constitution to force the states to engage in conduct, and i've got to tell you, walking away from the decision that was issued yesterday, we don't vi inmore clarity or certainty about the rule of law, because the united states supreme court rewrote the rule of law that congress itself
refused to pass, which was a tax increase on all americans. so the first thing, krifrt'ysta can do for texans andful oh americans, work to repeal back the mandate imposed on all americans. >> look, i don't want to argue over semantics whether it should be called a tax or penalty. mitt romney said in a previous life he thought the penalty was important for personal responsibility so people who don't have health insurance aren't freep riding on the system. but i'm interested in, you know, texas has been held up as a model, as a huge state that really does have a problem with a large number of uninsured people. i understand your position as attorney general, but you've also been quite clear on the policy side of this in your opposition to obama care and you're held on to someone who might run for governor of state of the texas. do you think that texas will go forward with the medicaid expansion and do you also think that texas will set up the state exchange that's required by the law, or is the federal
government going to have to do it for them? >> i'll be happy to answer your question. however, krystal i cannot let you slide-by-saying this is a matter of semantics to call it a tax increase, because the united states supreme court had to decideç that obamacare was a t in order for the court to uphold the constitutionality of it. so it's not a matter of semantics. it's a clear unequivocal matter going forward. obamacare is now a tax imposed on all americans, particularly hitting middle class more than anyone else. >> i have to challenge you on that, though. because, in fact, in massachusetts, the policy imposed there applied to less than 1% of residents. if you buy insurance, you're not subject to this penalty. saying it applied to everyone is highly misleading. in fact, if you have health insurance you're not stoubt it and if you fall below a certain income threshold, you're not
subject to the it. >> more people who don't have insures. here's why. it's based on one, multiple conversations with businesses in the state of texas. two, a stud they was produced by the texas public policy foundation. and that is, with this mandate now going into effect, businesses across the state of texas, and i assume across the united states, are going to find it is much more economical for them to pay the penalty as opposed for them to continue to provide insurance to their employees. so what you're going to find is many more people thrust on to the government health care rolls as opposed to the private insurance rolls which going to prove another falsehood made by president barack obama when he said, ifç you like your health care insurance, you're going to get to keep it, because that will prove false when all of these companies shed their health care programs and pay the penalty instead. >> attorney general, we've had a
long fight to get here. is it better for the people of texas and the people of america to keep fighting and living with a broken system, or move forward with the health care law we have now? if we keep relitigated this law every election and fighting over it everybody year what nation will we end up with? >> two points. what kind of nation will we end up with a congress that imposes unprecedented mandates in tax increases on our fellow americans? point one. point two is the fact there is a decision to be made by the majority of americans. this obamacare law is unworkable. and disliked, across the country. not only do the majority of americans dislike the law, a majority of americans thought the liu was unconstitutional. many americans are upset about the vote cast yesterday. those americans are going to have a chance to cast a vote this november, and reject obamacare altogether, because if
they have a change in the white house, they will be able to effectively repeal and replace obamacare. >> i certainly agree with you there. that this election is going to be critical for the future of health care in the country. and on that note we'll have to go. thank you so much for joining us today. texas attorney general abbott. >> thank you, krystal. as we go forward, we're watching those colorado wildfires where presidentç oba is meeting with fire crews. we'll bring you his comments live as "the cycle" rolls on for friday, june 29th. [ female announcer ] you can make macaroni & cheese without freshly-made pasta. you could also cut corners by making it without 100% real cheddar cheese. but then...it wouldn't be stouffer's mac & cheese. just one of over 70 satisfying recipes for one from stouffer's. olaf's pizza palace gets the most rewards of any small business credit card! pizza!!!!! [ garth ] olaf's small business earns 2% cash back
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in a movement surprise congress passed student loan interest rates right where they are at 3.4%. the bill saves more than 7 million students an average of $1,000 a year, but it's only a one-year tension. guess what, guys? next year was "celebrate our first anniversary of "the cycle" we'll get to do it all again. >> yeah. >> politically and practically, both sides had to agree to this. we all knew it was coming. they had to agree. the holup was over how they'd pay for it. they reach add conclusion last week and passed it today. it goes without saying i want your feedback on this. someone from either party sometime has got to address the cost of higher education, because we are saddles in particular, low-income students by definition with tremendous debt. forcing a product on them that
some might not need, and then thrusting them out into a workforce that's very inhospitable, and i just don't think it's sustainable. how are we servicing our younger generations by pushing them into a college they can't afford, might notç need and then can't pay off because they can't get a job? >> the thing is, we're making college unaffordable for them in certain ways. we can look at the high-priced private institutions in this country. i went to one of them and it was ridiculous tuition bill and -- you can take the private schools out of the picture. think of how we used to treat public higher education in this country. states would set out to have, like, you know -- to make their higher education, the crown jewel of their entire state government. think of california back in the 1960s. they created this great system of higher education. look at what's happened in the last 10 20shgs ye, 20 years. whn the bch needs cut, the first
place they look is higher education. reduction in state funding for colleges and universities over the last decade. at the same time, tuition has gone up 15% in the last three years. it used to be a great vehicle for the middle class, lower class, middle class a great vehicle to prosperity. these universities were -- >> krit'ystal, should we encour students to go into debt to go to school? >> i was going to address. the rational calculation they're making, the unemployment rate, if you have a college degree versus a high school degree, it's doubled, if you only have a high school degree, and the wage gap is somewhere around $20,000 on an annual basis between having a college degree and not having a college degree. so when people are making that decision, that's not that it's being thrust on them bought hugely impactful economic decision. >>ç the intellectual experienc and not everyone needs to go to
a four-year college. >> i see your point. community colleges provide a much better value per dollar. >> absolutely. >> if you can van easier on ramp between community college and four-year college, yutd be in better shape. >> it's -- for us to maintain this economy, we can't have a lot of people not able to afford college. we have to make that available for them. >> talk about that and fwling two of our guests. here for more on rising student debt and the broader education. so i know you guys yesterday hosted the first annual s.t.e.m. solution. s.t.e.m. pointed out stands for science, technology, engineering and mathmathematics. i trust a successful event. tell me why in the united states where we are 25th in the world in math and 17th in science, why can't we get competitive?
either one of you, feel free to answer. >> i'll take it. i think what you all are talking about the conversation we came in on is exactly that. there's a mismatch between the cost of education, what education will get you as a job and what skills are needed for employability. so we talked about that at the u.s. news & world report summit. focusing on what is the youth voice on it and i'll bet aaron sfeek that. >> the youth summit yesterdayç was a big success, because we were listening to young people themselves, and i think it's important to say this vote today on the student loan interest rates was a huge win for students, and their families. it affects over 7 million students, and it shows the power young people can have in moving this political process that so so often is stagnant and avoids
change. we saw the bipartisan support out there. you're pointing out the fact we need more kprcomprehensive ways address student debt. young people need to be at the tables. we'll have a big stake. it's our future. >> i came across an interesting story. new york city is a booming tech sector. apparently second only to silicon valley now. since 2007, 500 new tech companies in the new york city area. however, we're having to look outside of new york city and sometimes outside of the u.s. for talent. there isn't enough good skilled tech talent locally. mike bloomberg, our mayor here, was addressing that. his quote up on the screen. he said, the fact new york start-up company, having to go around the country and around the world to find talent tells tu has a lot more to do with our public school system and our universities. we have great engineering schools. we just don't have enough of them. so is that the national problem?
essentially. >> so i think that it, unfortunately, goes beyond that, because i think that we have to look at, you know, 72% -- somewhere around 70% of all collegeç entrants, students ha to work while they're in school. so you've got to look at the affordability of higher education, whether two year or four year and then you have to say, okay. if they have to work while they're in school, how are we going get them educated to be part of that skilled workforce, and there's not a lot of opportunities to work while in school. so there's a lot of different pieces of the puzzle to kraect that pipeline. that's some of the things we talked about. it's a lot of work to do. i think mayor bloomberg is doing amazing work, creating the tech mecca in new york city. i think s.t.e.m. is very important to new york city. science, technology, engineering and math, but 90% of all jobs in the country require s.t.e.m. skills, and we definitely have a
skill gap. we have to look at the gap. and there's not enough people going to higher education because of the affordability. so what other potential employment opportunities based on skills exist, or can exist? and we're working on educating to really say, i'm a skilled worker. i need employability and then i'll get my education while i'm working. that's where i think we are. >> aaron i just wanted to ask you, you mention add minute ago about the political power of students. it's striking when you look at the student loan issue. a no-brainer with both parties. they had to get behind this. look at the state level. i've seen it play out in a number of states throughout the years. it strikes me how powerless students are. when budget cuts get proposed at the state level, invariably a pro freft students and they seem to have much clouuç whether through voting, campaign donations, all the traditional
levels of power. what can students do at the state level when the budget at their state of the universities and colleges threaten anything they can do to stop that from happening? >> first off, let me say, it wasn't inevitable that congress was going to make sure that interest rates stayed where they were. the house gop budget actually assumed that the interest rates would double. so we went from that scenario to one now where students are seeing a big victory and you're absolutely right. we're seeing the tuition in public universities around the country going up 8% every year. we're seeing major cuts, particularly places like community colleges that are the backbone of our education system. and you know, there is quite a bit of student organizing out there. there's some terrific groups working in states, but we can do a lot more. we need to make our voices heard. you know, we heard recently this story at uva and the student were very in1r068ed. >> my alma mater.
wa-hoo-wa. >> and students can work together. this is in the interests of students and families but also our broader economy. so when states are looking at their budgets next year i think it's a question of priorities. are you going to invest in the future are your state and your future competitiveness? are you going to give that voice to students in the process? and it's -- the responsibility both of the states and our political leaders. also students themselves to be involved. >> a great point. >> aaron hinted on the business side. >> sure. >> every time the rates go up it hurts their workforce. >> good point. >> the young people working with
businesses and states can ma an impact where things need to go with higher education. >> you're doing great work. thanks to yo both. colorado is under a sdamp declaration. president obama is there. we'll bring you his remarks after this. i have evidence that proves my dad's a space alien. he speaks a weird language. [ gargling ] [ gargling ] he drinks green stuff. he says he's from albuquerque. i'm not buying it. i mean, just look at him. and one more thing -- he has a spaceship. [ whirring ] the evidence doesn't lie. my dad's an alien. [ male announcer ] the highly advanced audi a6. named to car and driver's 10 best. ♪ wow! it's even bigger than i thought. welcome to progressive. do you guys insure airstreams?
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still waiting to hear from the president on the colorado wildfires. considered the worst in colorado history. talk about the health care situation as it relates to the colorado situation. this jumped out at me today, paul krugman of the "new york times." unless you belong to that tiny class of wealthy americans who are insulated and isolated from the reality is of most people's lives, the winners from that supreme court decision are your friends, your relative, the people you work with and very likely you.
for almost all of us stand to benefit from making america a kinder and more decent society, and how that relates to what's going on in colorado is this -- most of those firefighters putting themselves in harm's way do not have health insurance. those people, as men and women, could go in there, risk their lives and come away with an injury and thus a hospital bill greater than their salary. therapy not paid much at all, people, for these six-month jobs. a clip from a firefighter talking about lacking health insurance. ccn@]u)pá? >> all we want is the opportunity to buy health insurance like other permanent firefighters have. other permanent firefighters have and we feel the work we do protecting people's homes and people's property and their businesses warrants that. >> seem s shameful to me that these people wom put themselves in harm's way, and could end up bankrupt from smoke inwho latha
or fire damage or whatever. >> the backbone of all campaigns for health insurance reform for health insurance. so striking, the law upheld. a 100-year push to get to that day in march of 2010 when congress passed health reform add the president signed it. so many false starts. these are what powered the campaign. you see what you run up against. insurance sdha doesn't want to let it go. run up against political naert decides it doesn't want any part of it and it's really a monumental achievement we've reach add point this is really the law of the land. >> i've got to tell you, though, i'm ecstatic about the supreme court decision yesterday, but speaking with the attorney general of texas, i'm also very concerned, because they did leave the door open for states to make the decision ultimately over whether their going to expand medicaid coverage to 133% of the poverty line.
if that doesn't happen, you're basically going to have the lowest income people still left vulnerable, because they won't qualify for the subsidies to allow them to purchase health insurance on the exchanges. that is0g a concern until we resolve that political issue. >> back to nbc's jinah kim in colorado springs. the president is about to speak. what do you expect him to say? >> reporter: yeah. he is supposed to speak at any moment now. what he's don apparently, after he landed here at peterson air force base, he got a briefing from the firefighters who have been at this fire nonstop, and then he got a ground tour of some of the most devastated areas. "with soup he "wi "we ay soup he's on that tour and then will make a brief statement. i don't expect he's going to interface one-on-one with the people of colorado. i have a feeling this visit is tightly scheduled. he's actually supposed to be leaving an hour and a half from now, back to washington. and where's he's going to be speaking is going to be kind of
in the worst-hit areas, and so i don't know whether the people of colorado will be able to ask him things like, are you going to give us more resources? are you going to give us more hope? what about next year when this happens again? but obviously, what he's supposed to say is supposed to happen in about the next half hour to an hour or so. we'll be able toll hear what he does want to tell the people of colorado coal. >> do you expect the president to speak with some firefighters on the ground? >> reporter: oh, yes. he is meeting with the firefighters. he's at a fire station right now, we're told, meeting with firefighters who are completing their 12-hour shift. >> wow. >> reporter: this is a very republican state, but the governor and the city mayor here are all very welcoming of him and said that despite some criticism that he may haveç be taking resources away for fighting this fight, because of all the security that gets involved anytime he comes to a city, they welcomed him with open arms and think that it that
was his -- his visit is the very thing that the people here need who are just so devastated from all the losses s. that a fair critique, that the president is taking resources away from the fight, or is he actually inspiring those who are out there and showing them that federal government and the commander in chief truly cares about what's going on there? >> reporter: well, governor bill owens a republican, the former republican bill owens, i should say, is the one who lobbied that criticism. he said during another really huge wildfire here, during his term, president bush wanted -- then president bush wanted to come and visit colorado and governor owen said, absolutely not. we don't want that kind of attention diverted from the actual fire fighting. of course, now the governor is a democrat. so it's kind of like owens versus hickenlooper, but i don't think the people -- i haven't heard anybody on the ground in colorado springs saying, why is he coming? >> everything that the president sdp in an election year is
political and politicized. >> reporter: and criticized. >> criticized, of course. this does make a lot of sense in that we see him as a leader, caring about people and turning the conversation literally and figuratively away from washington into him being a man of the people. look, if you want to talk about the politics of going to a natural disaster and trying to comfort people and trying to get some resolution to it, imagine what the reaction would be if he didn't go? everybody would be out there, why isn't he -- remember bush with katrina? what dlç he do jp air force on flew lower and he looked down. he didn't want to gept in the way. how did that go? talk about the politics, the basic rules. if you can get there, get there. >> right. and criticism of the president also when there were floods in the midwest that he didn't pay enough attention to them. didn't visit. i mean, you know, colorado, it's a republican state. it's a swing state definitely up for grabs in this election. anytime the president visits a swing state it's made into swhoo
of a political issue. >> the sorts of things presidents can do. make news and be part of the newses in a way a challenge ker not do that. here's a way for obama -- let's not make this purely political. i imagine obama truly cares about what's going on, cares about the people there. there is actually a humanitarian part of this visit. it's not just do it for the politics. >> absolutely. >> i do this this whole story connects to a broader issue that probably has re venlevance to t re-election. climate change. if you want to look at the conditions. i know it was said earlier, looks like arson is likely responsible for the start of this. the condition, incredibly hot. incredibly dry. drought seasons. all of the conditions became partially of what was result of a very unusually warm winter in colorado. very little snowfall and precipitation. conditions are favorable sfoor a
fast-spreading fire, uncontrol about fire. this is happening next door in new mexico. the largest fire in the state's history, struck by lightning. >> it'sç interesting, that you say -- >> do we have to inject politics into absolutely everything? i mean, we have already brought in health care, and owens versus higg higg h the new governor. i overheard you talking about this phenomenon. you've been following it. i read ample research suggesting, i'll quote one person, colorado state climatologist nolan who said, look, spring of 2012 looks much like spring of 1910. you can't say it's climate change just because it's an extreme -- >> you can't, but you can draw connections between the snow pack in colorado this winter was about 80% let's than it normally is. now, one of the effects is that means there's no moisture in the ground. when you have trees falling
down, for instance. you have wood that's out there. you don't have moisture that's going to prevent a fire from taking hold. that's one of the conditions. >> and climatologists cannot agree. >> the last time the snow pack was this low -- >> -- all right, everybody. obviously -- everybody in? well, we just had a chance to tour some of the damage that's been done by this devastating fire. i've had a chance to thank mayor bok as well as governor higgin lo -- higginlooper, the forest service and local fire officials have got an full briefing. i think what you see here is an example of outstanding coordination and cooperation we have been putting everything we have into trying to deal with what's one of the worst fires that we've seen here in
colorado. and it's still early in the fire season, and we still have a lot more work to do, but because of the outstanding work that's been done and because of not only the coordination but also some unprecedented arrangements that have been made with military resources combined with the civil resources, we're starting to see progress. obviously, as you saw in some of these subdivision, the devastation enormous, and our thoughts and prayers go out to all the families who have been affected. one of the things i've tried to emphasize is that whether it's fires in colorado or flooding in the northern parts of florida, when natural disasters like this hit, america comes together. and we all recognize that there but for the grace of god go i. we've got to make sure that we have each other's backs, and that spirit is what you're seeing in terms of volunteers,
in terms of firefighters, in terms of government officials. everybody's pulling together to try to deal with this situation. now, as i said, we're not completely out of the woods yet. these folks, some have been working 18-hour days, 20-hour days trying to make sure that these fires get put out. they're going to be carefully monitoring the situation. ultimately they'll need a little help from mother nature in order to fully extinguish these fires. meantime,ç lessons are being learned how to mitigate these fires in the future. i know the mayor, governor and other local officials are already in those conversations. it means that hopefully out of this tragedy some long-term planning occurs, and it may be that we can curb some of the damage that happens next time, even thoughyou can't obviously control the fires starting up in the mountains. one last point i want to make.
we kl provide all the resources. we can make sure they're well coordinated. as i just told these firefighters what we can't do is provide them with the courage and the determination and the professionalism, the heart that they show when they're out there battling these fires. when we had a chance on-site to see some guys who had just saved three homes in a community that had been devastated, for those families, the work and the sacrifice of those firefighters means the world to them. and they are genuine heroes. so we want to just say thank you to all of the folk whose have been involved in this. we're produce of you. we appreciate what you do each and every day, and so for folks all around the country, i hope you are reminded of how important our fire departments are, our forest services. sometimes they don't get the credit that they deserve until your house is burning down. or your community is being threatened. and you have to understand,
therapy putting their lives at risk to save us and help us. we've got to make sure that we remember that 365 dayç as year not just when tragedies like this strike. so thank you very much, everybody. >> that was it's president speaking ar the fires burning out of control in colorado. one spurn dead. 35,000 evacuated and the fire remains uncontained. up next, mr. mandate. the man both president obama and governor romney turned to for help on health reform. he's claiming victory in the supreme court decision.
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again, we are reading now the entire law has been upheld. >> the mandate is constitutional. the entire affordable health care act is upheld as constitutional. [ applause ] [ laughter ] >> well, that's steven colbert with his reaction to the health care decision. >> what steve looked like. >> incop solable. >> a toaster on the set in a minute. the man actually joining us, one
of the keyç architects and for the obama affordable care act. he says it's time to simplify what health care reform means for you. in the guest spot, the man they call mr. mandate, jonathan gruber. professor of economics at m.i.t. and director of the health care program at the national bureau of economic research. jonathan, thanks for joining us. i wanted to start with this. i was reading over an interview you gave a few weeks ago to website cogged capitalnew york. in a moment of exasperation you said of the romney plan of massachusetts and obama law nationally, you said they're the same "bleeping" bill, except you didn't say bleeping. the idea they're so similar is kind of, well known. i wonder, if that's the case, what has romneycare meant for massachusetts, and can we expect the same thing to happen now nationally? >> yeah, that quote kind of 345id me a legend in my kid's
school. what it's meant for massachusetts has been enormous success. basically, the law in massachusetts had two goals. the first was to cover the uninsured. we've done so successfully. covered two-thirds of uninsured residents in massachusetts. our own insurance rate is down 3%, by far the lowest in the country. the second goal was to fix a broken non-group ip insurance market. many of your viewers may not understand, but in america, if you do not get health insurance from your employer or government you face a harsh indiscriminate insurance, kicked off because you're sick or your rates fix pd new get six. we fixed it in massachusetts. lowereded premiums by morqç tha 50% by passing this law. with two-thirds public support throughout the implementation and later success of this law. all models we can expect nationally. it's the same structure nationally. the same bill. it's an ambitious way to talk about, but the basic structure is the same.
if we get pass the politics and iranment it, we' menmen menmenm the support. >> that has not been the case nationally. achlt the opposition of this is derived from the mandate. nationally. the rally cry. and been yupheld now. howard dean talked how he thought obamacare was workable without the mandate. you have all of these inducements. whether expansion of medicaid or all the subsidies the people are eligible for. he said it was workable without the mandate. if you didn't have the mandate, maybe it's more popular and easier to implement. you would know better than anybody else. did they make a mistake? is it workable at the federal level without a mandate? >> look, these are uncertainly projections. we don't know for sure. what do we know for sure? seven states in the 1990s tried to fix their insurance markets without a mandate and in every single case their markets collapsed as a result. two states quickly got rid of
the laws. the five states that kept them ended up with broken markets. without subsidies and other things. we also know in massachusetts, we ran the experiment howard dean says, works. you know what happened? the minute we put in our mandate, a bunch of healthy people came out of the woodwork and signed up. howard dean is wrong, the mandate doesn't matter. how much it matters is uncertain but it clearly matters a lot. >> with all due respect to in mandate. i know yesterday was a bfd, in the words of vice president biden, i do want to talk about something we discussed yesterday. this bill, and in particular the mandate is still unpopular. that's just a political reality, and i know yesterday toure, you were saying, well, maybe just one poll. still saying maybe a result of all the negative advertising. tom brokaw, we all know and love and respect was on "morning joe"
earlier this morning trying to ask david axelrod about this political reality. show that. >> and any poll that you look at, sometimes by a factor of 2-1, the american people do not like the idea of the mandate. that they have to buy insurance as directed by the government. that was not a change yesterday. and justice roberts in his struggling decision to write the majority opinion said at the end, this is no reflection of the wisdom of this law. that is a political reality you have to deal with. still pushing a rock up the hill when it comes to a mandate. >> that's true, although we should point out it will ally to very few people, because most people have insurance and most who don't will get help to get insurance. >> yeah. okay. so do me a favor, guys, around this table. indulge me, and take us facts, just for aç minute, that this politically unpopular. this is an unpopular bill. people don't like this mandate. how would you all deal with the political reality of this?
you want to celebrate the win, but how do you do that when you know the electorate is not behind this bill? >> one thing you have to deal with -- >> can i jump in with a couple facts? >> go ahead. >> yeah. >> is that okay? >> yeah. >> a couple facts. first of all, if you poll people, you find that about, about 45% of people don't like the law. about 35% do. if you break that down further, among those that don't like the law, about one-third of them don't like it because they think it doesn't go far enough. look at people who think the law is too much. it's actually about the same. >> okay. well -- >> then the second -- >> all of you take us back that this is unpopular. take us back that it's unpopular. wildly considered unpopular. >> i'll take your hypothetical situation and i think what you have to do is stop talking about the statistics. which i am totally guilty of. you know, this many people are going to be covered, et cetera, et cetera, and start telling the stories. really focus on the human side. here is a person whose child
cannot be covered, who can be now under health care reform. those stories are what people relate to rather than you know, a very long bill that is very complicated,agogued to death. p angle -- i don't think that he should run away from it though. i think he has to embrace it, talk about what's in it. and talk about the human side oç things. >> i mean, i think that professor makes a good point by steve, the other day trying to ignore that reality r, but part of thing that's happening here, too, is the basic american psychological revulsion to a mandate. there's this american thing of i can do what i want, say what i want and when the government is listed -- you have to wear a seat belt -- >> take us back, it's unpopular. >> i'm explaining part of why.
anytime government is telling you what you have to do, you have to get -- >> i'm asking you to say you're president obama, okay. but you're president obama. you're the president. you have an unpopular bill and you have 19 weeks before a re-election campaign. how do you sell a bill that every time it's discussed, has failed to become more popular? >> first of all, you have to tell people what it is. they're not giving us an alternative. >> you're not going to answer the question. >> here's the thing. >> steve is going to answer. >> i believe health care costs democrat seats in the 2010 midterms. i don't think it's going to help in the 2012 election. i'm going to paraphrase a line from the new book. when you're a political party and you get the white house, the senate, you have power and at a certain point, use the power or you don't and they made a decision that you knowç what,
this is the goal of this political party. ewan v universal health care. for generations. we finally have stars aligned and we're going to do it. obama said yesterday, i did do this for the politics and i believe that. i believe barack obama didn't do that. did not do this for the politics. i don't believe the politics in the short-term will work for the democrats. i'm going to end the rant there and ask a quick question because i want to get this in and it's this, professor. you have become, you worked with mitt romney to put the law in place in massachusetts. you had become one of the biggest thorns in his side. his law u is just like obama's law. quick question. when is the last time you talked to mitt romney? >> last i talked to mitt romney was middle of 2006. >> it's been a while. >> that's what i was expecting. we thank you for joining us. up next, toure's thoughts on "the cycle", week one.
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really glad we got to start "the cycle" on a nice, quiet news week. yeah, right. which will be part of determining if obama's first term is seen as a success and could transform american society. it was a week in which there was so much big news coming out of the court that two major stories went under reported. there wasç the crazy theatre o the attorney general and the supremes bars mandatory life without parole for juveniles. we had such a nice, easy news week, we were able to slide into the job, play some cool music and fly way under the the radar.
for example, i had the pleasure of listening to glenn beck struggling to pronounce my name. s.e. got a free cab ride because the cabbie likes the the show and a jon stewart montage. >> just think of the possibilities. >> this could be a win-win for the president. >> whatever the court rules is bad for the president. >> whatever happens, it's a win-win r for romney. >> bing and there were the tweets we'll never forget. someone wrote watching the cycle is like being inside of an intelligent, cyclone. another says i love the the show. it's fun watching -- and the other guy. the visits from luke the jedi russert. >> i want to get a cool power ranger name like you guys. >> i think you have to come in studio for that, but we'll get you one. >> i want a name like that.
that's cool. >> we'll come up with something clever. >> we have names for our segments based on our real names. toure tv, krystal clear and per s.e. or per se. luke announced he wants a name. we love luke like a brother from another mother, so he'sç goingo get a name. here's the top trending names. number seven, luke warm cycle. number six, big l. five, the natural. number four, cool hand luke. three, luke housewalker. number two, the house whisperer and the number one name for our friend mr. russert, like cyclewalker. be careful what you wish for because on monday, you graduate to junior partner. i voted for luke cyclewalker. >> he's be the other guy.
>> i like house whisperer. >> i like cool hand luke. >> if people suggest a good name, they can still be the one to say i gave luke russert his name. >> does he have a say? >> no. that's how we do it here. >> it's slightly a hazing ritual a little bit. jumping him into the group a little bit. >> good. i'm on board. >> and there's still time left for the tweet of the year. >> i know what you want to get out. >> for the tweet of the year. >> who's patrick -- >> the executive director of the dnc. >> been waiting to say that all show. >> martin, it's your show. >> thanks so much and congratulationsç to all of youn a great first week a