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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  September 5, 2012 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT

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elvis returns. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews at the democratic national committee in charlotte, north carolina. let me start tonight with the greatest politician of our time, elvis bubba, the big dog. he goes by many names. he is the guy you wouldn't hang with him. he is the big brother you want to give your eulogy, he is the guy we deeply miss, not just because of the economic good times, the good times bill clinton brings with him. the brimming with life even when others are down, democratic's party number one star. yes, the once and future king because unlike elvis, he really could come back. his wife, secretary of state hillary clinton, really could be the next president. and the big dog might just be
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back in his bed upstairs at the white house. so tonight the big dog will give a big sell but also let's be honest and even bigger teas, democrats, get ready to rock. bubba is back in town! the big dog is going to bark. elvis is about to be spotted for real right here on this stage in charlotte, north carolina. dee dee myers served at press secretary in the clinton white house. steve schmidt 'twas senior start jest for the failed mccain/palin campaign in at that time. not because of him. he's also msnbc political analyst. bill clinton's already been out there talking tonight. we have a clip from "the nightly news." let's watch bill clinton this evening. we don't have it yet. even though as advertised we were going to have it. >> i was honored when he asked me to nominate him. i hope what i can do, because we did have a good economy, because we did have a long expansion on
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history, is explain why i think his approach is right and it will pay off if we renew his contract. and explain why the economy he faced was much weaker and different than the one i faced. so that there is no way any president, no president, could have restored it to full health in just four years. >> you know, i love it when bill clinton, former president, your boss, puts those big hands out there, those big hands and he starts to explain. tonight is he going to explain the economic situation we face today and how obama is going to get us out of it? >> he is. that's what he said in that clip we just saw. i mean, one of the -- thing that bill clinton, i think, brings to this above all else, for 20 years he has been out there talking with the middle class people and working class people about the reality of their lives. they know he isn't just talking about because it ises an election year. he has been talking the talk and walking the walk for a generation. they know he gets it and cares.
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he will take that approach and ability to explain what's going on why and why people should stick with plan we are on. and he will bestow that upon obama. that's the greatest gift he can give. he will give his 20 years of credibility with the middle class in this country and is going to allow obama to rent it. >> why don't we take a look at the bill clinton tv ad for president obama. this is the main pitch we will hear. some version of this tonight. let's take a look at it. tv ad run something swing states right now. >> this election, to me, is about which candidate is more likely to return us to full employment. this is a clear choice. the republican plan is to cut more taxes on upper income people and deregulation. that's what got news trouble in the first place. president obama has a plan to rebuild america from the ground up. investing in innovation and education and job training and it only works if there is a strong middle class. that's what happened when i was president. we need to keep going with his plan. >> let's go to steve schmidt.
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it seems to me that i have never -- you are a political guy and you are as smart as anybody this business. you are really smart. let me ask you this. how did bill clinton come back from where he was in 19 8 after giving a clinker of a speech in 19 88? he is at 69%. he keeps rising. we know his past. it seems irrelevant now. problems he got into. how did he do it? this the lazarus stuff. >> no, it is incredible. he was 42 years old in 1988. he went and delivered the keynote address. when he finished he said in conclusion, and the whole audience stood up and started cheering. and the next night you saw his charm. i think it was on "the tonight show" where he was able to go laugh about himself and you just realized that what a know m momentous talent he is. if you love politics you have to be excited about the speech tonight. if you are a baseball fan, it is
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like the opportunity to see someone like mickey mantle play. it is going to be a great speech tonight from, as you said, greatest politician of our era. and also someone that's the most popular politician now in the united states. you know, somebody who has endured and come back and -- when he has been knocked down and has gotten back up and people admire that. they look back, i think, to the '90s and even a lot of republicans do with nostalgia. this was a time of peace and prosperity and good times. and tonight i think you are going to see him in the role of explainer in chief. trying to explain the disconnect between the promise of four years ago and reality. and there is no one more effective at it than the president could have asked to do this speech than he is. >> oliver wendell holmes, came across this great quote. events life. if you have a great heart, tremendous confidence in yourself, you can go through unbelievable stuff. bill clinton is going through -- let's face it, impeachment, gone through monica, he has gone through mark rich and all that junk. 30 points higher because he came
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back in and did the clinton global initiative. i called him in a document president of the world. this guy can get elected -- you take him to norway he would probably knock the president off there in the next election. oral jeer yeah. >> most popular political figure on the globe. >> i want to know how he does it. you worked with hum, speeches, press problems. what when does he think up this stuff? >> he never stops. he never stops thinking about tomorrow. he -- he really is -- congenital optimist. he really does believe that it matters, policy matters, and he believes that if you get up referee day and work hard, you can make life better for people. and people have seen that commitment year after year after year after year. when he didn't have to do it, when he could have been out playing golf and instead he is traveling around the world trying to communicate how we can create an economy that serves all people. >> how does his mind work? this is what i don't know and you might know. in the midst of his travails in
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'98 when all the stuff was hitting the fan, he walked out on the stage of the u.s. congress and -- chamber of the united states house and gave an amazing barn burning state of the union address. his mind was totally on the big stuff. >> right. >> how did he do that? how did it clear his head? >> i suppose that's -- that will be -- a question for the ages. right? compartmentalization or whatever. focus. ability to focus on the things he cares about. the things he can control. and the things that he thinks make a difference. it is what gets him out of bed excited every day. one of the things that struck me when i first met him was his ability to bring people to his ideas and get them excited about the possibility. and i think we will see that at the arena tonight. it is still possible. he still is the man from hoboken and can bring people in, get them excited and fired up and go out do street work. >> let me ask you about the politics. in these two guys get together as secretary clinton and president clinton have been at least formally, the democratic parties united. if he can get the white noncollege people from
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southwestern pennsylvania and if he can get the people in virginia who may be conservative for democrats, if he can bring them in and with the liberals and mainstream democrats, you have a winning ticket. if you think xlin ton can bring them in, people holding out right now on the president? >> i think he is going to make a powerful endorsement tonight and will be a great speech. but at the end of the day, i always think that the power of endorsements in campaigns, with very, very rare exceptions or overstated. the election at the end of the day is going to be between the president and governor romney and we will have the three debates between those two and that is going to be, in my view, the determination, you know, determinative factor in the race. >> okay. let's cut to the quick. it is a week before the election. these guys are 47-47. right now they are about 47-47. you got to get western pennsylvania. you are losing pennsylvania. it is too close to call. would you bring him in and travel around in an open car? would you have bill clinton stand standing next to you or would you fear he would upstage
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you? >> no, plant him in pennsylvania, you know, southern ohio. >> new hampshire. >> any of those states. obviously, you know, bill clinton had, you know, a great ability as a democrat to appeal to those white working class voters that, you know, are an important part of the swing, you know, voted in the election. and including also suburban women. where i think he has the ability to to be very, very effective. >> now, i agree with steven dorsmentes have very short half life. what bill clinton will do tonight is make the argument. i think that argument could really resonate with the president, with the surrogates going on around the country, ads with the whole package. tying it together and making the argument that appeals to middle class and working class people. >> you know al gore, right? >> yes. >> do you think he wished he used bill clinton in tennessee, arkansas, new hampshire, states he could have won? even practice? >> i think when you lose -- when you win the election, somehow manage to lose it, there's plenty of time for second-guess wlag you could have done differently. he did get more votes and could have use ad few more.
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i think that he's probably run those things over in his mind. it is all monday morning quarterbacking. >> let's think about the future. 2016. hillary clinton has gotten great marks for being secretary of state. has done nothing wrong, gotten nothing but credit for what he has done, a good team player and a leader. worldwide. one of the great worldwide leaders now. what do you think bill clinton would like her to do? >> i honestly think he wants her to take time off and knows how to tie -- how hard she worked. i think he wants to bring her to the foundation for now, focus on women and girls. her passion. she lights up the room. if she should decide to take her also high 60% approval rating for a spin and run for president again, i think he would be 100% -- >> how many people would like to see hillary clinton run for president? [ applause ]
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how many would like to see dee dee myers as press secretary? thank you very much. dee dee myers. great analysis. thank you very much for joining us. coming back live from charlotte, both parties talked about the american dream. did you catch the difference? will was a dig difference last night and last week? what did the dream mean? starting successful business as to what it meant for future generations. let's listen. >> he believes that when you worked hard and done well and walk through that doorway of opportunity, you do not slam it shut behind you. >> was than the only striking difference between the two conventions. we will get into it in just a moment. ted kennedy was not here last night but his spirit was felt. two of his children, patrick and ted jr., will be right here in a couple of minutes. also, blink will surely light up the hall tonight. who better to turn on the insight than the big man himself, actor who played him,
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parodied him, for 15 years on "saturday night live." inheriting the soul of bill clinton. and finally, let me finish tonight with the bark of the big dog. you will hear it tonight. this is "hardball." the place for politics. one is for a clean, wedomestic energy future that puts us in control.
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welcome back to "hardball." last night the democrats were fired up at the start of convention in charlotte. whole field was different i can tell from you last week's republican business meeting down in tampa. san antonio mayor castro gave the keynote. in which he praised president obama's record and also went on the attack against romney. let's take a listen. >> mitt romney quite simply doesn't get it. a few months ago, he visited a university in ohio and gave
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students there a little entrepreneurial advice. start a business, he said. but how? borrow money if you have to from your parents. he told him. gee, why didn't i think of that? i don't think governor romney meant any harm. i think he is a good guy. he just has no idea how good he's had it. >> unlike in tampa the speakers and the crowd here actually seem to like the candidate. i didn't know he had it in him. this is one of the most effective surrogates i ever heard. they will keep this guy on the trail. governor patrick of massachusetts. defending president obama's record. >> it is time for democrats to grow a backbone and stand up for what we believe. this is the president who delivered the security of affordable health care to every single american in every corner
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of this country after 90 years of trying! this is the president who brought osama bin laden to justice, who ended the war in iraq, and is ending the war in afghanistan. this is the president who ended don't ask, don't tell so that the love of country, not love of another determines fitness for service. who made equal pay for equal work the law of the land. >> anyway, last night, the -- they highlighted p major differences between the parties. donna edwards, u.s. congresswoman from maryland. gavin newsom, florida. let me just say -- as a student of politics, you are politician, i'm a student. everybody who wants to go into politics should read the speech. recite it a million times and say is this what a want to door inform a living? that's what politics is, selling. this is what between stand for and what we have done. we are better than the other
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guy. he was fantastic. >> chris, you know, not apologizing for it. so he put the record out there because so much of what we have heard during the republican convention was just a bunch of nonsense and it wasn't true. what governor patrick did last night, as he said, let's talk what the real record is and democrats, we are proud of what we have done. we have done. we are not going to walk away from it. >> chris, that was the most powerful i think even the reaction of the crowd just a moment ago standing up with strength of character, principle, having the courage of your convictions. resonates. people want strength. and they don't want people to necessarily apologize for their points of view. i agree with you 100%. it does not surprise me because he's effective all of the time. >> i know. i never saw him do that streak on an or toory last night. that was out with a bullhorn. >> we saw so many people in the republican convention, what they were doing is selling themselves. and they weren't -- >> did you notice, everybody gave a 90% of their speech to
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themselves. >> that's right. >> the big guy from jersey, what's his name, christie, all he talked about was christie. anyway -- i love the fact your governor challenged him to a pushup contest. anyway, nbc's first read blog pointed out this morning, a big difference how the two conventions talked about the american dream. the message last week was focused on an american dream to become an entrepreneur rep. businessman. but speakers last night like michelle obama, first lady, very different take. let's watch. >> barack knows the american dream because he's lived it. and he wants everyone in this country, everyone, to have the same opportunity no matter what we are or where we are from or what we look like or who we love. and he believes that when you worked hard and done well, and walked through that doorway of
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opportunity, you do not slam it shut behind you. month, you reach back and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed. >> the role of government plays in providing opportunity. let's watch him. >> the american dream is not a sprint. or even a marathon. it is a relay. our families don't always cross the finish line in the span of one generation. but each generation passes on to the next, fruits of their labor. my grandmother never owned a house. she cleaned other people's houses so she could afford to rent her own. but she saw her daughter become the first in her family to graduate from college. and my mother fought hard for civil rights so that instead of a mop, i could hold this mick phone.
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>> congresswoman, i thought -- i said it last night and i will keep saying because i learned something last night. so much of us, so many of us whose families came, mine came over a couple of generations from ireland and british isles, and to us that was the i am grant experience. i think that he made the point that the mayor did last night that the immigrant experience coming south to north is the same thing. it may come from -- it is to get work. it is to find an opportunity. i thought he really did that incredibly well. >> i think between mayor castro and the first lady, what you heard is a dream that every parent and grandparent shares for that your children. and i think that they laid that out there in a way that says we are connected as communities. and as human beings. and that our experiences may be slightly different but they are not all that different. >> did you -- were you struck by the fact that it is not just black people but brown peel, hispanic people, affected directly by the civil rights act? that those people were discriminated against as well? >> absolutely. what you could hear from that is
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the connectiveness between all of our experiences and what he said is that as a brown person, what she said is as a black person, guess what. we shared some stuff. >> yeah. >> you could hear it. >> it was -- >> powerful. >> governor? >> the best -- >> by the way, lot of kudos for your work for manage equality last night. i think every speaker, every speaker, including the first lady, made a big case for marriage equality. >> i appreciate it. thank you. and back to the point when you stand on principle, when you have the courage of your convictions, and that was -- those two speeches connected me to the best of dr. king, we are all bound together bay web, mutuality. we are all in this together. the notion of commonwealth was alive and well last night. >> that's right. one thing missing from both governor romney's and congressman paul ryan's speeches last week was he mentioned the wars the countries fighting now. that's something tammy duckworth, war hero herself, brought up last night. >> when it comes to our men and
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women in harm's way, we have a clear choice on november 6. last week mitt romney had a chance to show his support for the brave men and women he's seeking to command. but he chose to criticize president obama and instead of even uttering the word afghanistan. barack obama will never ignore our troops. he will fight for them. >> governor why do the hawks always want to talk about fresh wars? and never talk about the war we are still fighting with all the -- >> obvious point. they are messy, complicated. it is easy to start something and difficult to follow through. they get news both these cars wars. it is president obama that has been cleaning up this mess and it is this convention that -- that are doing everything that needs to be done to get us out of these wars. and a safe and responsible way. >> congresswoman? >> you know -- no mention. i come from a military family.
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so what i see what president obama has done and particularly the first lady with our military families and our servicemen and women, between can't ignore them. so, you know, to talk about starting new wars but not even mention the honorable service that's going on right now and the kind of sacrifice that's going on in this country, no one should be president -- >> i think i know why they didn't do it. they are trying to sell a new one. one thing was clear last night. democrats decided they weren't going to run away from obama care. they called it obama care. kathleen sebelius said democrats should wear the nickname of obama care like badge of honor. one of the most emotional speeches came from stays kwlin, mother of a child with heart problems who had strong words on the law. let's watch her. >> if mitt romney becomes president, and obama care is repealed, there's a good chance she will hit her lifetime cap. there is no way we can afford to paw for all of the care she needs to survive.
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when you have a sick child, it is always in the back of your mind and sometimes in the front of your mind. on top of that, worrying that people with letting insurance company take away her health care just because of politics, 1 in 100 children are born with a congenital heart defect. president obama is fighting for them. >> congresswoman, i loved it because the republican ad campaign has been trying to suggest that obama care is some planned to skim from the middle class retirees and medicare and give it to poor people. it is called medicare. this is different. this is called insurance for people that have real health crises. >> it is, chris. it is an anchor. it is what middle class families need and it is what stacey linh said she needed for her family. and republicans want to take that away. >> they only have one shot.
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called november. anyway, thank you very much. gavin newsom, lieutenant governor of california. more from charlotte. our coverage of the democratic national convention. this is "hardball." the place for politics. >> i have seen firsthand that being president doesn't change who you are. no, it reveals who you are. i have seen how the issues that come across the president's desk are always the hard ones. they are the problems where no amount of data or numbers will get you to the right answer.
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try the #1 gastroenterologist recommended probiotic. align. align naturally helps maintain digestive balance. ♪ ooh, baby, can i do for you today? ♪ try align today. here we are. here we are at halftime again. we are going to hear there these people. i want to hear what they are thinking and feeling now. no question, ma'am, what are you thinking and feeling? >> i would like to make sure that the president is re-ele re-elected.
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245es what i that's what i'm thinking about. taking my energy back to florida. >> you will need it there. >> i'm feeling very excited the democratic convention is representative of america and representative of the values that the democratic party holds. congressional district, georgia! >> i'm feeling very good, very optimistic about president obama re-election. we are very excited in south carolina. >> i'm really excited to vote for president obama for four more years. >> judy from columbia, south carolina. i'm excited to be here. >> i'm here for obama. >> say something else. >> charlotte, i'm an independent voter. >> okay. >> whoa. you are one of 6% of american people. what will it decide for you, the debates? what are you going to make up your mind, when you are in booth? on the way in the booth? >> no, i made up my mind. >> who are you for? >> i'm for obama because i trust him.
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>> i'm concerned about future of our country, for my daughter and her family and my son and his wife. and our granddaughter. and -- we just cannot go backwards. that's what the republicans are pushing. >> i have to ask this guy, the carolina sweatshirt, what he thinks? >> we are from atlanta representing as well. >> where did you get that sweatshirt? >> chapel hill. >> you know how many journalists came out of chapel hill? >> chapel hill. >> i went there. >> i just wanted to say -- how could -- how could i vote for a president who wants to see my birth certificate and doesn't want me to see his taxes. >> oh, god. that's pretty good. >> ft. myers, florida. we are here because we are bogey to do our part to support the president. >> we have a wrap now. we will be right back with more "hardball." welcome aboard!
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i am julia boorstin with your cnbc market wrap. dow gains 11 one hatch points. s&p is off by 1 is 1/2 points. the nasdaq falls by six points. fedex shares slip 2% after the company cut its first quarter forecast. blaming the weak global economy. facebook rose nearly 5% after the ceo said she has no plans to sell shares for at least a year. obligations for home loansful last week. that's it from cnbc, first in business worldwide. now back to "hardball."
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welcome back to "hardball." last night's convention included a tribute to the late senator edward kennedy. reinforcement of powerful presidents he still is in the -- presence in the democratic party. here is part of that emotional video. >> best way to find out about what a party will do is what it has done. we were the ones that brought higher education and medicare programs and medicaid programs, knock down the walls of discrimination. we brought a sound economy, sensible foreign policy. those are the essential values of the democratic party. aren't they? >> i love this country. i believe in the bright light of hope and possibility. i always have, even in the darkest hours. i know what america can achieve. i have seen it. i have lived it. and with barack obama, we can do it again!
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>> joining us is ted kennedy's two sons. patrick kennedy of rhode island. and ted kennedy jr. of the great state of connecticut which may see more of him. you were watching last night and the hall. what was your reaction, watching the reaction? >> well, i -- never have been more proud of my father than i was in the hall last night. because, you know, he was a guy who every four years came to the democratic convention and reminded us all why we were democrats and reaffirmed why he was in public service. you know, there wasn't a guy who worked harder, who was more committed to fairness, to the underdog and come here every four years and get me charged by all of his friends across the country. >> patrick, my friend, you know, it seems like everybody -- forget the big picture of ted kennedy, legislate tore, i said
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last night that your uncle jack could have picked him as one of the greatest senators of history if he was able to look forward into the '50s. his personal thing he would do for people, phone calls, talk about that because you were the son and must have -- how does this guy have so much time to make all these phone calls to people? >> teddy and i have been trying to make it through lobbies in this convention town and there isn't a place we go people don't stop us and tell us about what our father men to them in their personal lives. >> yeah. >> last night, michelle obama talked about how all politics is personal. my dad understood that. my brother teddy, when he faced a life threatening illness and lost his leg to cancer, said it is not enough that we provide health care if it doesn't save people from being bankrupted because of health care costs. so, you know, that's why my dad fought for health care, just like last night, michelle obama talked about her father with ms. that's why this president needs to be re-elected because he represents what average american
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families are facing on a daily basis. >> i was wondering why health care -- i thought back having studied your family a bit, your uncle jack, the president had a terrible back problem his whole life and had stomach problems his whole life. your dad had the plane accident. almost was killed. you could see the brace. you knew the pain he was in. is it -- rosemary, your aunt that had the mental problems. is that why your familiar sly so devoted to health care, special olympics, is this personal experience? >> i think it is. i think my father was -- incredible capacity for empathy just like this president does. he -- i think it was, you know, having a sister with an intellectual disability, sensitized him to the vulnerability and all human beings. and that's the exactly the -- way that the -- reason why this president is going to be re-elected is because he has the same sensibility and he can connect with people in a very
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intimate and authentic way. that's what is ultimately going to decide this race. >> caroline, your cousin, going to speak tomorrow night at the convention. everybody will watch that. there was a wonderful story about generations. this is very much an american story where the kids, my age, i called them kids, 20s. went to their parents and said you know, this new guy on the block, obama, may have a strange name but this is the future. we got to go with him. is that true in your family, younger people -- how did it break out for obama? >> i think -- >> i know you had hillary action in the family. i know that. >> my father -- obviously i have great affection for hillary. and president clinton. but recognize the historic moment in this country. 50 years after his brother was the first president to speak about the moral issue of civil rights, my father was the one to stand in that arc of history you talk about and be there for the first african-american president elected in this country's history.
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[ applause ] >> you know, when my family -- my son michael said something i had never thought of before despite noticing your family what it has done. jack kennedy, president kennedy, took a segregationist party and turned it into a civil rights party in one presidency. that's pretty zwrin. >> it wasn't hard to do. wasp easy to do, as you know. but you are right. i think the reason why my uncles and my father, they were all incredible individuals but the reason why we are still talking about president kennedy and robert f. kennedy and why we are still going to be talking about barack obama, years from now, is because what they stood for. not just who they were. >> let me ask you about being a son of ted kennedy which to most of us unimaginable. i'm one of the unimaginable because i can't imagine what it is like to have -- my father who was great but to be an historic figure like ted kennedy and had so much impact on people personally and collectively. what do you feel when you hear him talk about in the past tense by people that never knew him
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personally? >> well, you know, i have -- i love my father so much. i have -- he was my hero. tremendous amount of respect. even every passing day. understanding and learning more and more about theissues that h with. he was able to balance his public life and his dedication to his family and remember, chris, it was than -- he was not was just father to me. and my brother and my late sister. he was a father to all of us in our family. and that was quite a responsibility. and he took that very, very seriously. and he was loved by everybody in my family who called him uncle teddy. so, you know, ial wondered how i would feel after my father died -- when people would come up to me, as patrick said in the hallways, talk a b a story. i didn't know if i was wistful and bring on melancholy, et cetera, but you know what, i -- i love hearing these stories about how -- ways in which my father, you know, helped individual people.
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and that's something that i feel enormous am of pride about. >> your feeling when you hear -- rest of your life you will hear. >> i had the great honor of serving with my father and in addition to calling him dad. colleague of his. we both -- >> pretty much the same way. >> we did. we sponsored the mental health just before the health care bill. this was did health care law that we both sponsored together. and as you know, chris, it is a civil rights issue to make sure people with mental illnesses and addictions do get segregated really from the health care system because we don't treat mental health as overall health. >> great. keep working at it. >> thank you. >> up next, no one studied bill clinton more than the man that played him so famously. "saturday night live." the great, incredible darrell hammond is coming here. this is "hardball." the place for politics. ♪
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with priority mail flat rate boxes from the postal service shipping's easy. if it fits, it ships anywhere in the country for a low flat rate. that's not complicated. no. come on. how about... a handshake. alright. priority mail flat rate boxes. starting at just $5.15. only from the postal service. my next guest for months, fortunately we got him. we wait for former bill clinton's speech tonight. the speculation over what he will say is building. who better to crawl inside the big dog's head with us than former "saturday night live" cast member darrell hammond who frequently shadowed the former president. we also have gene robinson, pulitzer prize winning genius from "the washington post" who followed clinton throughout his
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presidency. here you are. darrell hammond actually speaking in front of bill clinton at the 1997 radio and tv correspondents dinner. let's watch you and the other guy. >> mr. president, have a seat. typically when i come in to mop up at the end of an event like this, i'll just finish reading from some prepared text and say things like we must find common grou ground. we are going to build a bridge to the 24th century. i'll have to refer you on that one.
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>> darrell, you are amazing. have you this thing about clinton and biting the lip and that thing he does. what else -- closing the mouth. >> well -- yeah. i mean, i never actually saw him bite the li and do the thumb at the same time. but we did it one night at "snl" and it clicked and we did it 85 more times. >> what's going on? is bill clinton -- when you think about him inside, is he like sort of a really big kid? what is he? >> why a really big kid? >> because he seems to enjoy every second like he's got new toys. >> because he -- >> it is always a new toy he has been handed. >> yeah. he loves being the president, yeah. he loves being bill clinton. what is he doing now? scribbling. it is not going -- you and i know it is not going to be written completely. he is going to say something that's not on paper anywhere when he is out there. >> he walked into mrs. martin luther king's funeral and he walked in and saw the casket, gene. what did he say? he said there's a woman in
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there. >> there is a woman in there. >> where did that come from? >> you and i were on the air that day. we watched him just -- this speech that was just incredible. best speech of that funeral, the best eulogy. >> he was better than the black ministers that do it something there's nothing wrong with america. that can't be fixed by what's wrong in america. he'll think of it while he's out there. >> tonight is he thinking about hillary? is he thinking about obama? is he thinking about how needy obama is right now for him? he loves -- he seems he's at his best with columbine when something tragic happens. >> the big brother. yeah. he's one of the most selfless performers i've ever seen. i think he's going to try to make the president look really good. >> he's very -- he's tactical and strategic in the way he
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speaks too. i think he realizes the big picture of tonight. what his job is. and i think he'll do it. and probably knock it out of the park. he's an optimistic guy isn't he? he can never live through a bad day without thinking tomorrow was going to be a better day. >> i've often wondered if he even understands negativity on a basic level. i don't think he does. >> here you are playing bill clinton on "saturday night live" after george w. bush's inauguration. let's watch. >> good evening, my fellow americans. tonight i am coming to you as citizen bill clinton. as you know, earlier today george w. bush was sworn into office and now he is your president. for a majority of us, that's a hard pill to swallow. >> you know, there's somebody else whose voice you did pretty well.
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some guy. >> okay. let's watch that. let's see daryl hammond playing someone i really know and love. here he is. >> madam secretary printed a story which relied on faulty information. now they're claiming. i ask you is the administration losing control faster than billy joel behind the wheel after a ten martini lunch. >> ha! well, anyway, daryl hammond who's done presidents and people like me even. you did a great cheney. can you do me one? >> doing what? >> you starting a war. >> oh, stop it. >> how about the misery of ending a war? >> no. no, no, no. >> okay, no.
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what are you doing out there? give us some bill. bill clinton. >> bill clinton? >> yeah. tonight, give us a preview. >> i can hardly hear you. >> give us a preview of tonight. >> of what he would do? >> he would say there's nothing wrong with america. it cannot be fixed by what is right with america. i swear to god. >> and i'm curious as to whether donald trump is watching this at home. do you think? do you think? >> trump, he's dying to be here. >> yeah. >> what is it about trump and the hair? have you figured it out? >> i don't know. we used to call it the onion loaf. and it didn't seem to bother him at all. >> the onion loaf? >> yeah. like my hair is an onion loaf. it's the onion loaf.
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>> do you say huge the way he says it. >> huge! >> one more time. huge. >> huge! >> okay. that's enough. daryl hammond is coming back at midnight. we're going to be here having fun after everything. you'll do bill clinton tonight after bill clinton. eugene robinson, good sport. ahead we'll look at bill clinton taking the stage and what it could be for this convention. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. [ male announcer ] wouldn't it be cool if we took the nissan altima and reimagined nearly everything in it? gave it greater horsepower and best in class 38 mpg highway... ...advanced headlights... ...and zero gravity seats? yeah, that would be cool. ♪ introducing the completely reimagined nissan altima. it's our most innovative altima ever. nissan. innovation that excites. ♪
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let me finish tonight with this. written circuses. a good economy and a good show, yes? good times. and a spectacle. christians against the lions out there in the middle of the coliseum. the big arena tonight will be there with lots of food waiting for the table back home. that's the goal.
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tonight the democrats put on the best show they've had in years. bill clinton walks on the stage and does what he does better than anyone i've ever seen. he will address that mood like the aroma that comes with the morning coffee. he will be there and thousands of others will be there and feel him there just for them. bill clinton will go one on one with everyone watching and listening. he will resemble nothing so much as one of those plastic santa claus masks that follow you with your eyes. seem to be looking at you, you, not anyone else. as i said up front tonight, he goes by many names. elvis, bubba, the big dog. tonight he will be all of that. most important of all he will be there, he will be there for barack obama. that will make all the difference, all the difference in the world. and that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. i'll be back in one hour with rachel maddow and my msnbc colleagues for complete coverage of the democratic national


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