tv Morning Joe MSNBC September 18, 2012 3:00am-6:00am PDT
>> what else you got. >> maggie says way too late. i'm on the west coast, berkeley, california on the couch while i hear my husband snore in the bedroom. >> pop him one time. back of the hand in the face. works every time. on me, anyway. >> one more, tower. >> i'm so i can hear your commentary on page three interceptions before i turn myself into jail. >> oh, boy, you been hanging out in nashville again with shaun white? >> "morning joe" starts right now. . . i've got a terrific campaign. my senior campaign people work extraordinarily well together, i work well with them. our campaign is doing well. and frankly, these process stories take away from what's really of concern to the american people. >> so no changes in your campaign? >> no, i've got a good team. >> all right. good morning. >> we've got another process story for you. >> i'm not sure what the 47% would think of that.
it's tuesday, september 18th. with us onset we have historian jon meacham, author of the still forthcoming book -- >> 53% of america is waiting for it. >> that's terrific. "thomas jefferson: the art of power." >> and they feel victimized because the words are so big. >> make sure to call me the n non-pulitzer prize winning whatever. >> john heilemann. right. okay. we've got a lot going on. >> we do have a lot to talk about we can talk about what everyone's atwitter about, or we can wait. >> why don't we start with news. >> okay. i want to say the last time this happened to a candidate you liked it a lot. >> why don't we start with news overseas. >> that's true. >> then we'll get to the news we'll be talking about
politically for some time. because there are people dying, they continue to die. and it's just unbelievable. what's wrong? >> just a little underdressed. seriously. >> you know what? by the way -- >> it's still summer. >> by the way, it was like september 3rd or 4th, and clayton who is new, i'm wearing that blue crew sweater, right? >> yeah. >> and clayton goes because he's new to the show i like that sweater. and i said you're going to see it every day for the next six months so get used to it. >> did you hear what t.j. just asked me? where's my leather? >> the united states military says most joint operations with the americans and afghan soldiers are going to be suspended until further notice. and mika, this is horrifying when you look at the fact that u.s. policy makers have been justifying continuing this war in afghanistan based on this -- this -- this lie that we're going to be able to train them
and help these people who are shooting and killing our troops, help them run the country. >> the longest war and for the longest time no one who is in charge or who knows about these issues can tell us what winning means. the move comes amid an alarming string of insider attacks. the latest on sunday that left four american soldiers dead. yesterday, nato announced it was also scaling back joint operations with afghan security forces. the joint combat patrols are seen as a critical part of the u.s. plan to withdrawal from afghanistan by the end of 2014. and just a few hours ago, in the capital of kabul, nine people were killed when a suicide bomb rammed a car packed with explosives into to a mini bus believed to be carrying foreign workers. >> this is such a melt down here. and sometimes it feels like we're the only -- sometimes it feels we're one of the only media outlets that are talking about this. we've been talking about it for
three years nonstop. this is a complete meltdown. we've got, you know, we've got guys running units getting killed. every day, it's something new. >> i understand the latest with mitt romney, but i'd like to hear him comment on exactly what he might do differently. >> well, you know what i'd like to hear? i'd like to hear him talk about it, i'd like to hear the commander in chief talk about it. i'd like to hear the commander in chief who launched this policy three years ago. i'd like to hear what he has to say about it too. you know why we're not hearing it? because the media is not talking about afghanistan. they just -- i don't understand, and i haven't understood for three, four years while we continue this descent, it's one of the ongoing frustrations. >> this is the entire rationale, the entire justification for us still being in afghanistan is about two years from now, two years and change, we will turn over the security of the country
to the very people who some of whom, not all, obviously, but some of whom are now killing our own troops. not only can we not turn it over to them, we can't work side by side with them. it's a complete breakdown of trust and i don't see how you justify two more years of us watching these pictures coming in. >> and these pictures coming in from this morning. another suicide attack, it continues, and by the way, these attacks, they started a long time before a crude video was beamed up on youtube and used as an excuse for anti-american hatred across the globe. john? >> part of the strategy is the counterinsurgency strategy has failed. >> and jon meacham, you said this three years ago, when you -- you said we are moving from a counterterrorism strategy in afghanistan that worked to a counterinsurgency strategy that will not work. >> right. >> dr. brzezinski said this three years ago when he said we are blurring the lines between
fighting al qaeda and fighting the taliban. it's two distinctly different things. it's not like jon meacham and dr. brzezinski and others around the table didn't see this day coming and it continues. >> well, and joe biden. >> joe biden. >> when joe biden made this distinction and lost the argument because he said we should just be focused on counterterrorism and not counterinsurgency. >> and joe biden was fighting like hell. he said don't triple the number of troops, mr. president, we can use drone strikes. we can use special forces, we should not triple the number of troops. and, again, the big problem is, it's not just the tripling of number of troops, which is a terrible problem. but it's also the problem of, again, just what jon said. changing from a counterterror strategy where you want to kill terrorists to a counterinsurgency strategy, which worked in iraq where you want to rebuild a country. >> or build. >> well, build, actually. you can't rebuild a country that is in the second century right
now. >> it's hard to talk about. it's hard for the candidates to talk about. and if anything can be read into the mistake or the complete just disregard for the story, it would be in the fact that this wasn't even mentioned in mitt romney's speech. afghanistan, are troops serving our way forward in terms of foreign policy because it's too hard to talk about. i don't understand how they could forget it. they can't forget a huge sector of what's going on in this country. >> why not? >> they avoided it. you know why? because it's hard. and they don't think people want to hear about it. >> do you know why they avoided it? for the same reason the media has avoided it. >> i agree with that. >> other than the "new york times" and a couple other outlets, the media have avoided it, the american people have avoided it. you bring it up and everybody we've talked to over the past couple of years want us out of there. >> republicans especially.
>> and the other global point here is, we've talked about this, does anybody believe if there was a selective service draft that involved national service as well as military service that any of this would've lasted past '03, maybe '04? >> and that's the thing about the draft. and charlie rangel has been talking about the draft for a long time, if we had a draft in 2003, we probably, probably still would've gone to iraq because it was right after 9/11 and you have the cia director saying it's a slam dunk. mr. president, they've got wmds, but i will tell you about the middle of 2004, when we found out they didn't have wmds, every parent in america would be rising to their feet and telling their congressmen, you get my son and -- or you get my daughter home right now. and same thing with afghanistan, this war would have been over in 2008. in 2008 if we'd had a draft. >> absolutely.
one of the great failings of democratic lower case "d" culture over the last 20 years. >> i think it's incumbent on the president to explain in the press to ask the president why things will be different at the end of 2014 than they will be today. what do the next two years look like? what's the value of staying there two more years? are we going to see this every day? car bombs and insider attacks for two more years? >> the answer's been around this table, willie, it's been, well, we've got to stay there because we've got to train the afghan soldiers -- >> how's that going? >> they're shooting us. bring our sons and daughters home. we've been saying it for three years, bring or sons and daughters home. what's so offensive to me, jon, the fact they've kept troops over there for political reasons. nobody wants to be the president, nobody wants to be the party that "loses the war." >> but to mika's point and i totally agree with willie, that question should be asked to the president and equally so, the question should be asked to mitt romney why he rejects to the
notion of setting a date of bringing home the troops in two years. he wants to stay longer. both candidates should be forced to answer their questions about what their end game is. the president, i think two years is too long. i think more than two years is therefore even worse. >> all right. >> let's have the debate on that. >> let's get to politics. let's keep this story tight and not lather in it because i want to get to chicago before we go to break. >> you're going to chicago this morning? >> a video recorded surreptitiously and obtained by nbc news shows mitt romney speaking at a private fundraiser last may about the politics of the presidential campaign and disparaging 47% of the american voting population. >> is that the idea? >> take a listen. you can play it now. >> all everybody's been told is don't worry, we'll take care of you. how are you going to do it two months before the election is convince everyone that you've got to take care of yourself.
>> well, there are 47% of the people who vote for the president no matter what. there are 47% with him who are dependent upon government who believe they're victims, that believes government have the responsibility to care for them, who believe they're entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. that's an entitlement, and the government should give it to them. and they will vote for this president no matter what. and the president starts off with 48%, 49%, he starts off with a huge number because these are people who pay no income tax. 47% of americans pay no income tax. so our message of low taxes doesn't connect. and he'll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. that's what they sell every four years. and so my job is not to worry about those people. i'll never convince them to take personal responsibility for their lives, what we'll have to do is convince the 5% to 10% in the center that are independents, that are thoughtful, that look at voting one way or the other, dependent
upon in some cases emotion, whether they like the guy or not. >> willie, there's so much here. i don't know where to begin. why don't we start by talking about the waiters walking in front of this camera who are working their third job to get their sons or daughters through community college. i wonder what they think about this message. but do you notice how comfortable mitt romney was speaking? how fluid he was? >> oh, my god -- >> no, it's the truth. he wasn't halting. he actually was speaking with great confidence. he believes that he -- i don't know, you tell me. what was that? >> that's the case the obama campaign made last night. this was a man saying what he believes. this was a window into the real mitt romney. behind closed doors when he thinks nobody's looking except those whose money he needs, this is what he feels, this is what he believes. whether or not you think that's true is up to you, the viewer. it does reinforce and perhaps set in stone the caricature that
the obama campaign has done a good job of creating of mitt romney as an unfeeling rich guy. >> gordon gekko meets thurston howell iii. >> he is thurston howell. >> he's in a horrible position. if he didn't have the problem he has with the conservatives, people on the right who want him to double down on this, who are arguing, you know, this is the right argument, you should make this case, he would've just apologized. but he can't do that now because he's in so much trouble on that side. he's boxed in. he can't do the obvious political thing that would be the right thing to do for the middle of the country. the right is pinning him down. last night, he gives this press conference where he comes out and tries to say, well, i was speaking in -- no, he was speaking perfectly artfully and perfectly clearly. unfortunately, he says this thing, the one sentence in here. i'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives. that's, you know, pretty much every senior citizen in america who is on medicare and social
security doesn't pay any income tax, that's the one voting group mitt romney had a clear advantage over the president with. >> so -- >> it's so contemptuous, it's so condescending. >> so people don't think that everybody around this table is lathering. here's why this matters politically, mika. >> okay. >> george w. bush and karl rove were brilliant early in bush's campaigns. they would campaign in minority neighborhoods. they would go to poor schools. they would go places where they knew they would never get the votes. >> yes. >> you know why they did that? because their target audience was suburban housewives in philadelphia, were swing voters in orlando, explaining we're not the old line republicans. we really do want to help bring children up. and george w. bush really did believe, as jeb does too. the problem with this video is that i'm one of the conservatives that -- i've been pushing romney, you know, for the past several weeks, start saying something, tell us what you believe in, be more
ideological. what disturbs me and disconnects me from that candidate is the fact i believe conservative policies help 100% of americans. i don't believe it helps the 1%. i really do believe that you don't help the waiters and waitresses that want to get a better job by raising taxes on job creators. i just believe. and maybe i'm wrong. maybe i'm stupid, maybe i'm shortsighted, maybe history proves i am wrong. and maybe -- who knows, maybe left wing economists like paul krugman are right, they could be. but i believe in my heart of hearts that the way you help those waiters go to college if they want to go to college or go to tech school and create a better life for themselves is by getting the federal government off the backs of business owners, cutting taxes, cutting regulations, less spending in washington.
i don't look at those 47% as victims. i look at them as people i want to help. and by the way, for the record, it's the reason why i got like 75% of the votes of people making under $50,000. i would give a conservative message, but i wasn't aimed at the 1%. the 1% can take care of themselves. let's get a job -- that's not the romney we're seeing there. that's not the conservative. that does sound thurston howell iii. victims, lazy, come on. >> there's a lot of that. i would also argue it sounds like a radical. and it doesn't sound like dwight eisenhower, doesn't sound the way reagan governed. >> by the way, reagan didn't believe that. >> no, but modern conservatism is burkian in that you take the reality that fdr created and you try to shift the balance a little bit within the spectrum toward private enterprise, toward individual
responsibility. but you don't tear the whole thing down. >> by the way -- >> you reform, you don't totally roll back. >> there's just, you know, symbolic problems that will lead many to lather in a huge way in this. and that is that this is a guy with a car elevator. this is a guy who won't release his tax returns, this is a guy who didn't pay taxes. >> you know -- >> it seems to me that the conservatives -- >> it's bad. >> the conservatives that do the best, politically, are conservatives like paul ryan from a sort of very middle class background, chris christie, margaret thatcher, a shopkeeper's daughter, ronald reagan, a guy that pulled himself up by his boot straps from, you know, the depression in iowa. here with mitt romney, you do -- >> there's no relatability. >> you do have a guy who seems so insulated. who dismisses -- and i'm dead serious here, this is a question for my conservative brethren and sisters and republican brethren
and sisters. who dismisses 47% of the american population as victims? you know what? i want everybody to vote for the truly conservative candidate. right off 47%? why? >> not just victims, basically, saying these are 47% that aren't going to vote for me, i don't care about them. i'm not going to talk to them. the problem that last week one of the things we talked about on this set was that romney's response to the libyan thing didn't seem serious, didn't seem presidential, right? >> which, by the way, we've got to follow up on this and i'll let you continue, the polls show overwhelmingly, that has hurt him. >> yes. >> it's been devastating to him. all the people on the right that have been circling the wagons for the past week, i'm sorry, it devastated him. >> didn't seem serious, didn't seem presidential, didn't seem big enough for the job. you know, this seems exactly the
same way. it seems very small and if you're going -- if you're campaigning for president, you have to try to campaign to be president for all americans, not just the ones who are going to vote for you, not just the republican base, the democratic base, even the people who are not going to vote for you. because if you win, you're going to be president of all americans. to say oh, these 47%, they're never going to be able to take care of themselves, i don't care about them, let's move on to my voters sounds small and petty. >> and by the way -- >> and not presidential. >> and i was in rooms with jeb bush when he was governor, and there would be wealthy people that would say things like this to jeb bush and he would just glare at them. and then he would say when nobody was watching, you don't understand, those are the people we have to help. you can help yourself. you get your lawyers, whatever, these are the people we've got to help. these are the -- and he would say, chris christie, you know what chris christie did the morning after he got elected? he called cory booker and he went to inner city newark.
>> right. >> and he showed up there. you know why? because chris christie knew. he had to bring everybody in. mitt romney dismissing 47%? >> john heilemann brings up the lack or the problems that he created for himself in foreign policy. then you have the other big argument, which is that he won't release information on what he'll do in terms of the economy. then you're left looking at who he is. and you can't help but to wonder, willie, if this recording lets you know more about who he is. >> i think as john says, the quote my job is not to worry about those people is really damaging. because as president -- >> yeah. >> by definition your job is to worry about people. >> now mitt romney will say that he was analyzing the campaign and he's writing those 47% off in the campaign, that said, i will tell you those words would never cross the lips of jeb bush, chris christie, paul ryan.
they would never say that in a million years. this guy is seeming to be -- he just seems too insulated by wealth and by life experience. >> and a lot of people have brought up over the past 12 hours or so, john and i were talking about this on "way too early," president obama's comment behind closed doors in 2008, a san francisco fundraiser where he said there are working class people who are bitter clinging to their guns and religion. you pointed out a bit of a distinction there. >> the thing about that quote was also condescending and politically problematic and made him seem elitist, and he lost pennsylvania by ten points because of that. if you go back and look at the quote. after he said the thing about people who are bitter and cling to their religion and guns. he said there are some in those communities, i know, i think you'll find people of every background, there'll be a mix of people, you can go to the toughest neighborhoods, you'll find obama enthusiasts and also find places where you think i'd be strong and people would be skeptical, the important thing is you show up and keep doing
what you're doing. that was the end of the quote. meaning there are some of the folks that are not going to be my people, but i'm going to keep showing up making the arguments, not i'm going to dismiss them because forget about them it's not my job to care about. >> and his story doesn't match -- the problem is this feeds into the narrative. we have lathered and lathered. >> let's go back four years ago, i talked about this for a very long time. i thought it was a window into his elitist soul. a guy that went to the most elusive prep school in hawaii, the guy that went to harvard -- >> if you saw michelle obama's speech -- >> that taught law school at the university of chicago, it fed into that narrative that he looked down on working class americans as people clinging to their -- >> no. >> i think both of the -- and i think it was devastating. i think it killed him in pennsylvania, he lost by ten points to hillary. he paid a great political price
for it. and jon meacham, i would suggest he deserved to pay a great political price for those elitist comments out in san francisco. but now moving forward, i think we're going to see mitt romney, the same thing happen to mitt romney here, except this is again, this is in the general election campaign. this is not in the primary. >> 50 days out. >> man, i'll tell you what, this has been -- and we need to talk about this. i know it's 23 past, we've got to get going, but you combine the libyan press conference with this -- >> the politico stuff about -- >> the politico stuff, this has been a horrible week. the race is not over. he can turn it around. but this is one of the worst weeks in a general election i can remember. >> i've never run for office. >> you're a lucky man. >> not yet. >> so is america. >> not yet, governor. >> however, i think the phrase hastily called 10:00 p.m. press conference is -- >> it's never good. he shouldn't have done it. he shouldn't have done it.
>> especially given how mitt romney does so well with the press. in a number of circumstances. >> he looked -- he looked -- i felt -- i'm just telling you, i'm sure everyone will hate me, i really felt sorry for him last night. i really felt so bad for him. i was like, oh, god, come on, man. i did. i did. and by the way, i feel bad for democrats that are caught out there in the glare of the lights, whether they deserve what they get or not, it is a lonely, lonely -- >> okay. we have so much to cover this morning. >> we have more video. >> oh, god. >> more video to come. coming up, regis will join us onset. he's going to be here. >> talk about being embarrassed. also senator kent conrad, the "washington post" eugene robinson, chuck todd. up next, sam stein has a look at the stories he's working on today in the "huff post" politics page.
good morning, we are talking about rain moving into the east coast and we could end up with severe weather in our region as well in the new york city area, but stretching all the way down into northern florida too. look at the lightning in the panhandle of florida moving into the jacksonville area. we are going to see frequent cloud to ground lightning. wind gusts up to around 40 to maybe 50 miles per hour. and we could end up with isolated tornadoes. basically anywhere from western connecticut, western massachusetts, down through new jersey, down into washington, d.c., the possibility exists for isolated tornadoes all the way into northern florida. so temperatures will be on the warm side, it is going to be a mild day. and humid too as that moisture streams in from the gulf coast states. we are looking at rain and thunderstorms, possibly severe, especially later this morning into this afternoon and then everything should start to ease as we go into tonight. you are watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. 4g lte has the fastest speeds.
so let's talk about coverage. based on this chart, who would you choose ? wow. you guys take a minute. verizon, hands down. i'm going to show you guys another chart. pretty obvious. i don't think color matters. pretty obvious. what's pretty obvious about it ? that verizon has the coverage. verizon. verizon. we're going to go to another chart. it doesn't really matter how you present it. it doesn't matter how you present it. verizon. more 4g lte coverage than all other networks combined.
28 past the hour. let's just get to this other big story in our morning headlines. from the "chicago tribune" 350,000 public school students -- >> truly disadvantaged. >> missing the seventh day of classes as the teachers union remains on strike. >> oh, my gosh. >> rahm emanuel yesterday was unable to get a judge to quickly order the teachers back to the classrooms. a court hearing is scheduled for tomorrow, but it might not matter. union delegates are set to meet today to decide on whether or not to end the walkout. teachers have spent the past two days reading over a tentative proposal. >> what are they doing? >> that most outside observers admit is a winning deal for the
union. pay increases, reduces the influence of test scores on teacher evaluations, it also includes an appeals process to contest evaluations. >> it's just unbelievable. >> it's frightening. >> that these teachers. >> teacher unions committing slow-motion suicide. >> teachers unions are committing slow-motion suicide. >> and confirming some of the politicians who have made waves in the past year, taking on the unions. >> i mean, and speaking of teachers, how many teachers in chicago are horrified by the action of the union members? and want to get back to work? they want to get back to work because they understand that it's the kids who are suffering the most in some of the toughest, worst neighborhoods. with parents that can afford this the least. >> and the median income of the parents if they have one is less than half of what these teachers are getting in their raises. there you go. willie, what's next? >> let's hope one way or the
other it's over this week, whether it's the vote tonight or judge tomorrow. get the kids back in school. let's do some politics from washington. mr. sam stein, he's got a look at the top stories in today's huff post politics page. >> good morning, guys. >> let's talk top romney pollster. the campaign has struggled a bit on getting the tax plan across to voters, something they thought should have been a strength for the campaign. do they still have time now 50 days out to breakthrough on taxes? >> yeah, the romney pollster saying he doesn't think that voters actually know the distinction between the romney plan for taxes and the obama plan for taxes, which is sort of a shocking admission this far out in to the campaign. you know, they're drastically different tax plans, obviously. and i think it goes to show you when you have an empty canvas, people paint things on it for you. the romney campaign, not just
taxes, but a bunch of different subjects have allowed the obama campaign to obscure his policies and apply their own caricature to it. >> and just about every policy now. who handles taxes better, who is handling the deficit better, they're losing in all of these areas, even the economy now has drawn even, sam, this is when you take the personality versus the politics right now mitt romney's behind on both. >> they're in a real bind here. they want to make this a referendum on obama, but i think they've hit a wall on how many voters will be persuaded with respect to just throwing out the president. at this point, they need to actually get people to get persuaded to back romney. and you saw that in recent poll numbers. it was something like 47% of romney supporters are voting for him just to get rid of obama and another 50% or so are voting because they like romney. on the other hand, they can't
start -- they feel like they can't start offering specifics because they'll get attacked for it. so when you're talking about deductions and exemptions in the tax code, whether it's the mortgage interest, whether it's, you know, health care, whether it's, you know, child tax credit, if they start saying, yeah, we're going to go after that one, well, that's a whole new political vulnerability. they're really stuck here. >> another surprise too, if you look at polls, by a wide margin, americans still blame this economy on george w. bush more than they do on president obama. and i think the romney campaign was counting on the opposite to be true in this election. so sam, stay with us, a lot more to talk about. appreciate you giving us a look inside huff post politics. when we come back, broncos and falcons, an ugly start for peyton manning, three interceptions in the first quarter. >> did he make the peyton face? >> all right. >> we'll be right back. so much talk about who should replace regis philbin, i'm sitting here across from you wondering if you're interested in that job. >> no, i'm just interested in regis.
we could have a little do on the side and no one would -- >> a little what? >> a little do. >> a little dew on the grass in the morning. >> happy birthday, i can't believe you're only five and literally cannot imagine our life before you. thank you for changing morning television. and for making it pleasant even for me to get up early enough in the morning to come be with you. >> happy birthday, "morning joe." [ giggling ]
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that sam stein, he's good. >> are you serious? >> yes, he's great. >> what is wrong with you? >> sam stein -- >> sam's not little. he's a giant in the industry. >> he is a giant in the industry. >> he's a diminutive fellow, though -- >> you're turning into me. i'm going to start calling you mushka. >> what if he's wearing socks today. >> why does it always come back to my appearance? >> because you do have that --
>> sam feels objectified. >> we're going back to our hogwartz cam in a minute, but let's do sports. >> let's do sports. peyton manning led the broncos, deemed as super bowl contenders, but last night's game against the falcons giving everybody pause. third play from scrimmage in the game. manning looking for jacob tamme, picked off, moore returns it all the way to the one, michael turner would punch that for if the falcons, 7-0, atlanta, early on, next broncos possession -- >> i'm sure he gets revenge. >> steps in front of it and he's going the other way. >> redemption -- >> triple coverage. >> how about this? still in the first quarter, broncos start to put a drive together, but manning overthrows it. >> oh, no. >> nice return here by robert maclaine. nightmare first quarter for peyton manning. second time in his pro career
he's thrown three picks in the first quarter of a game. >> what other manning? >> there's the peyton face. >> 13-0, all off manning interceptions. only people having a worse night, the officials. you watch any of this game, they were clicking away. it was taking forever. there's a big fight, took the officials six minutes to figure out what happened exactly. remember, these are college officials, not sec officials. a lot of these former division two refs. so much confusion, the first half was more than two hours long. that's a four-yard touchdown, 27-7 there. the broncos did make a little comeback, closed it, but couldn't finish. 27-21 the final again, an awful night for peyton manning. >> by the way, though, if i'm a broncos fan, i want peyton on my side. he had a bad night, he's going to come back. >> he had a bad quarter. he led them back at the end. >> that guy, the broncos are going to be there at the end.
>> still peyton manning. can we show the mug shot without explanation. shaun white arrested in nashville. jon meacham at the lowes vanderbilt hotel where you always stay for parents weekend. >> fine establishment. >> you should be an honorary -- >> it's a black and white gallery, and sort of warhols, some of the best. >> we'll be right back. mika's must-read op-eds. ♪
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it's not elegantly stated. let me tell you. i'm speaking off the cuff in response to a question. and i'm sure i could state it more clearly in are more effective way than i did in a setting like that. and so i'll -- i'm sure i'll point that out as time goes on, but we don't even have the question given the snippet there nor the full response. and i hope the person who has the video would put out the full -- the full material. but it's a message which i'm going to carry and continue to carry, which is, look, the president's approach is attractive to people who are not paying taxes because frankly my discussion about lowering taxes isn't as attractive to them and therefore, i'm not likely to draw them into my campaign as effectively as those who are in the middle. >> oh, my god, it's just -- okay. we're going to do the must-read opinion pages now. >> hey, t.j., is there a bag? can i just put it over my head? >> no, it's so bad.
and david brooks makes it worse. this is so stinging. thurston howell romney. >> oh, my god. will somebody wake me up in november? >> the people who receive the proportionate share of government spending are not big-government lovers. they are republicans, they are senior citizens, they are white men with degrees. the people who have benefitted from the entitlement explosions are middle class workers more so than the dependent poor. romney's comments also reveal that he has lost any sense of the social compact. the republican party and apparently mitt romney too has shifted over toward a much more hyperindividualistic atomistic social view from the reaganesque language. there's no way the country will trust the republican party to reform the welfare state if that party doesn't have a basic commitment to provide a safety net for those who suffer for no fault of their own.
>> he's right on that one. >> yeah. >> hate to say that. >> so anyhow -- uh -- okay. so wait, wait, i got it. we could argue, we could debate whether or not he should've held a conference at 10:00 at night, a press conference to make it worse. >> you know, he -- the problem is, sam stein, he said in his press conference that things were -- he said them inartfully. the fact is -- >> he asked for war. >> the fact is he actually spoke, i think, more articulately and more, and in a more relaxed manner than he has. you could actually go back and listen to the audio of it and this actually is mitt romney sounding better behind a microphone stylistically than he ever has which, of course, causes completely different
concerns. >> sure, i mean, he doesn't stumble over a single word in that quote. and, you know, listen, let's give him some benefit of the doubt. let's say he was just giving this from the vantage point of a political strategist sort of assessing the landscape of the race. fine, but he gets his facts completely wrong, i think 10.3% of all people who don't pay federal income tax, are elderly or retirees. paul ryan got through miami university based on help from social security benefits that his father accrued. i mean, that didn't make paul ryan any less motivated as an individual. and i think that's what david brooks' point is. is that you don't sap motivation from them because you help them, you try to give them opportunity and sometimes through the tax code to get them motivated. and so, you know, this is just a really unfortunate and somewhat revealing -- not somewhat, very revealing comment from romney that sticks with him for a couple of weeks now. >> well, look, there's no
question that we're now -- this is what we're now going to be talking about, you know. again, we've made this point so many times as they step on themselves over and over again. they have a message they want to drive, they keep making news that does not help them drive their message. this is going to be the story for the rest of the week, it's 50 days from the election, and now we're going to spend this week talking about this and not talking about the economy and not talking about mitt romney's failed economic management according to the romney campaign. it's just kind of a disaster -- >> can i just add the polling data based on prior gaffes, and this is not a gaffe. but the polling data based on prior gaffes show that they generally haven't had that much of an effect that the news coverage would suggest, certainly not in this election. but, you know, john's right, this is the last thing that the romney campaign wants to be talking about with 50 days left in the election. >> you know -- >> the other particularly cynical part of this is i would argue that if he had power he wouldn't take the -- invest the political capital to rally roll
back the welfare state because it's too hard. >> of course. >> so it's at once politically damaging as sam points out factually wrong and cynical because if he were in charge, he would be processed back not unlike reagan. >> you've got 50 days left, the biggest problem -- we've got three debates. if romney flattens barack obama in all three debates, people are just going to be talking about this as just a horrific week. the guy obviously still can win. he's got tons of money, they're going to be running 30-second spots. the biggest problem right now, though, he's had a terrible week and the questions that have been raised from the right as well as from the middle on the left is whether he can run an effective campaign or not. and i -- i'm not so concerned about the what happened yesterday politically as much as
i am what's happened over the past week or two that shows in a general election campaign, actually since the convention that the people that are running his campaign just don't know how to run a campaign. they are not karl rove. they are not mike murphy. they are not, you know, they are not mark mckinnon, they have no -- >> they are disconnected. >> they have no idea how to run a national campaign well. >> they made him call a hastily called news conference at 10:00 at night to double down on something that is so politically painful that we can't even -- it hurts to talk about. >> in 1996 when the republican party looked at bob dole and said lost cause. the party abandoned dole and said, you're done, we don't believe in you anymore. when does that happen to romney? last night a senior gop strategist said i think i've just seen the every man, the every man for himself moment is here. maybe that's premature, but the republican party is looking at mitt romney right now and saying how much are we going to lean
into this guy over the last two months if he's not capable of winning? >> and karl rove decides he's going to start investing in senate races, a the that point you can pull the plug. >> and that's probably after the first debate. >> if after the first debate he goes down, then rove's going to go screw this, we're going to win the senate back and we're going to win the house and barack obama's going to have to deal with us. i think until the super pac money flees, mitt romney still has a good shot. >> put the bag on your head. still to come, the chairman of the senate budget committee kent conrad, also regis joins us onset, and willie's news you can't use is next. [ ow
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i'm not concerned about the very -- >> poor. >> got it wrong. i'm sorry. >> i want every american to be in the top 1%. >> that's my first name. i'm not looking for a colony on the moon, just someone to blame. i like being able to blame people. fired. with regards to abortion, you can choose -- >> your own adventure. >> it's a republican -- >> dimension. >> and i'm more concerned about the banks, they're unable to lend. >> corporations are people, my friend. >> my dog is on the roof. >> you might remember that video, that was from march. >> that was funny, we don't need
that anymore. australian lawyer hugh atkin is back at it again, this time he's put together president obama and m.c. hammer. ♪ didn't build that ♪ you didn't build that ♪ didn't build that >> what do we got here? >> it's an air cannon for shooting marshmallows. ♪ mitt romney strikes me so hard ♪ >> out of context. those words aren't mine. >> feels good. >> when the economy's weak, responding with the national security leak -- osama bin laden, i killed. and that was a mission, you didn't build. >> and it gets better. >> that's great. you didn't build that. you didn't build that. >> rick james and president obama and m.c. hammer all together in one beautiful place. check it out online. when we come back, eugene robinson, also jeff greenfield
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♪ all right. top of the hour. live look at new york city from the top of the rock. >> beautiful. >> what a glum day. welcome back to "morning joe," john heilemann and jon meacham are still with us. and joining us on the set, the man who used the term thurston howell iii, and columnist for yahoo news, jeff greenfield, out
with a new ebook. and in washington, pulitzer prize winning columnist and msnbc political analyst eugene robinson. good to have you at the table this morning. guys, we have a simulcast coming up, so when i wrap you, i mean it. you too. >> our top story, we've been lathering in it, a video reco recordrecor recorded surreptitiously shows mitt romney speaking at a fundraiser last may about the politics of the presidential campaign and disparaging 47% of the american voting population. here it is. >> for years all everybody's been told is don't worry, we'll take care of you. how are we going to do with two months before the election to convince everyone you've got to take care of yourself? >> well, there are 47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. all right. there are 47% who are with him who are dependent upon
government. who believe they are victims, who believes the government has the responsibility to care for them, who believe they're entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it. it's an entitlement, and the government should give it to them. and they will vote for this president no matter what. and the president starts off with 48%, 49%, he starts off with a huge number because these are people who pay no income tax, 47% of americans pay no income tax. so our message of low taxes doesn't connect. he'll be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. i mean, that's what they sell every four years. and so my job is not to worry about those people. i'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives, we'll have to convince the 5% to 10% in the center that are independents, that are thoughtful, that look at voting one way or the other depending upon in some cases emotion, whether they like the guy or not. >> all right. so they had a news conference and doubled down on it. asked for more. we will show that in a moment.
but first, jeff? >> there's a serious argument to be made in this country about the rise of the entitlement state. whether we can afford medicare as it is, whether it's sustainable as an entitlement. and whether dependency is a serious issue. but it's hard to imagine a candidate for president on so many different fronts as the way mitt romney did. >> okay. >> first of all, on the factual issue, the idea that people who don't pay income tax are necessarily democrats. no, many of them are senior citizens and they're voting for mitt romney. many of them are people who are disabled. many of them pay other taxes. and to do it in a closed meeting with rich supporters -- >> ouch. >> barack obama is still paying the political price for that closed-door meeting four years ago when he talked about what working class folks clinging to their guns and religion. and it's true, i on this very program referenced mitt romney as thurston howell iii, which is
now the david brooks column. that's exactly -- you cannot imagine a more destructive message at this point. >> so, eugene robinson, can you take this a step further? the reason why i'm worried this will last is because it does fit into an overall -- i hate to use the word, narrative, that just won't go away. >> well, it does. it actually fits in to several overlapping narratives about mitt romney, none of them flattering, frankly. it fits into all of them about romney. i'll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and take care of their lives. so he's saying that these people don't take responsibility for their lives, they're a bunch of slackers and lay abouts who are just sitting around waiting
for -- it's an astonishing way to describe 47% of the american people. >> you put that on top of him saying something you would never heard from jeb bush or chris christie, i'm not going to worry about them. i'm not going to worry about those people. >> no. and actually, if you go back -- somebody pointed this out yesterday. this was not originally me, but if you go back to the obama quote about guns and religion, he was explaining -- and it was, you know, terrible quote, awful mistake, he never should've said it, but he was explaining how he intended to try to reach those people. and he thought he could reach them. he thought he had a message for them, thought he had programs for them. and here's romney saying, you know, forget about it, it's not my job to reach them. i don't care about those people, they're a bunch of losers. it's just breathtaking, frankly. and i've never seen anything
really quite like it. >> i've never seen a run, john heilemann. we're simulcasting the "today" show, but this has been a miserable couple of weeks for mitt romney's campaign. i haven't seen a run in the general campaign this bad. >> and horrifically timed and exposing a certain thing -- i mentioned a gop strategist just sent me an e-mail and pointed out that romney has been the marketing candidate. the problem is if you're the marketing candidate and marketing fails, you're not left with very much. it's very hard because suddenly the brand is gone. and what else is there? nobody can really tell you, including most conservatives, what does mitt romney stand for? what is his core? a brand image that's now kind of in tatters. and so where do you go from here? >> yeah. >> it's a really huge strategic challenge for a campaign with only 50 days left. >> there's a huge challenge also to turn this around. he's supposed to be the turn
around guy. how does he turn around the narrative of this campaign? how does he turn around the people of his campaign? does he shake it up? does he get new people? he doubled down yesterday on his campaign saying that his campaign and his staff, the senior members of his staff are strong and working very well together. i would disagree with that. i would disagree with that at this point. i don't know how many times he can be embarrassed by them and put out there at 10:00 at night to double down. so we're going to simulcast on this issue with "today." here now is savannah. >> joe, good morning to you. >> good morning. >> let's start with this video. is this a category five crisis for the romney campaign? or is it a blip, a minor embarrassment, something that will have no real ima account. >> well, that depends on whether they turn the campaign around or not. think about it, savannah, you've got 50 days left, mitt romney's going to be spending over $100 million on 30-second ads,
outside groups will be spending a lot of money. you've got three presidential debates. there's no doubt if mitt romney clearly outperforms barack obama in all three debates, nobody's going to be talking about this other than how it helped mitt romney focus and turn things around. but here's the problem, this is an absolute critical time for this campaign, and go back to the convention, start with that video, the high point of mitt romney's campaign was his rnc video, which was so moving and made you think, you know what? i think i can relate to this guy. and then we had clint eastwood, and then we had the chair, and then hoeover this past week, yo combine libya and the press conference, which is polling horribly for him. the campaign shake-up yesterday that was in several publications, and then this video, very, very bad news. this is one of the worst weeks for any presidential candidate in a general election that any of us can remember around this table. >> and how dangerous, potentially, are these remarks? at one point he basically dismisses half the nation as
dead beats saying i'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives. does this feed into the narrative that the obama campaign has been trying to push on romney all summer? >> it feeds into what jeff greenfield called the thurston howell iii candidate six months ago, david brooks is talking about it this morning. this is what's important, 47% of these quote victims mitt romney talked about, we're not going to vote for mitt romney anyway, but jeb bush and george w. bush, they would always start their campaigns in inner cities, they would talk to the truly disadvantaged, no the because they believed they would get those votes, but they believed they would get swing voters. white suburban moms are in swing districts that may look at republicans as being too harsh and too uncaring. maybe republicans are the candidates that are going to take care of their tax dollars better, going to run government
more wisely. but the hard edge scared them. george w. bush, karl rove, jeb bush, they figured that out. this is dangerous, not because he's going to lose that 47% of the vote, but because you're going to start seeing suburban voters, swing voters storm away from the campaign as quickly as possible unless he fixes it. >> and you mentioned some of the disarray reported in the campaign and the article in "politico." here's what governor romney said on telemundo about that story. >> i've got a terrific campaign. my senior campaign people work extraordinarily well together, i work well with them. our campaign is doing well. >> no changes in your campaign? >> no, i've got a good team. >> joe, you don't usually see these kind of stories until late in the campaign when campaign advisers now they're losing. do you think that's what's happening here? >> i think a few points of view that are a little different than what mitt romney said. he says he has a terrific campaign, actually, he doesn't. he says the campaign workers are working well together, well, actually, no, they're not working well together. and that his campaign's going in
the right direction. no, it's no the. and this is not being said by liberals who are gleeful about what's happened over the past couple of weeks, these are conservatives, these are gop strategists, these are people that have invested in the reagan revolution, invested in the gingrich revolution of '94, invested in george w. bush's campaign. they are so depressed this morning they just can't believe that mitt romney is blowing a race against a president who they believe has mismanaged the economy terribly over the past four years, has spent $5 trillion deeper into debt, run trillion dollar deficits per year, the largest stimulus spending bill ever, has had the largest health care plan ever, and it's not working. unemployment is still 8% plus. the economy is still in tatters. and mitt romney is blowing this race. it is too much for many republicans to handle. >> well, former republican
congressman joe scarborough, thank you for your perspective this morning. >> savannah, i'm going to go put a bag over my head now, i'll talk to you soon. where's that bag? >> joe, thanks. >> you know what? if you have this -- what do you do with this candidate? your campaign manager, you're an adviser, you're somebody who knows what he's doing. someone who knows what he's doing? what do you do now? >> the problem is, i don't know, who does mitt romney trust? does anybody around the table now. no, that's the thing. mitt romney's got to listen. who does mitt romney trust? you've been following this guy for five, six years, who can go to mitt romney and say, mitt, i love you, you're one of the greatest businessmen of our generation, you created something new in venture capital, you turned businesses around, you know what? a lawyer who has himself as a client is a fool or whatever they say. mitt, you can save others, but you can't save yourself, mitt. who is that one person who can go to him and say you've got to
clean out your staff. you're losing and you're going to lose this campaign. >> bob white. >> bob white. >> his former business partner, and the guy who has been -- i've often said romney only has a few close true friends, bob white, former business partner of his now on the outside, very rich man, very close to the campaign, was one of the people who has been at various points in the campaign has been a slightly outside, he's not outside, he's in the inner circle, but he's not on the staff who sometimes goes to romney and tells him uncomfortable truths. there aren't that many people that do it, but he does. >> bob white can do that. that's what he needs. he needs someone to go in and say this is going poorly, you're going to lose. >> could ann romney do it? >> well, there's no one closer do mitt romney than ann romney. the reason he's doubled down on his campaign, he's not, you know, look, he's been very loyal to this group. and you think about one of the things we've all praised him for when his campaign was going well was that he had taken a very
fractious, too many consultants, the 2008 model, had too many people, he slimmed that group down in 2012 and got a very tight inner circle and it was based on the obama model from 2008. stewart stevens, matt rhodes, those people were people he trusted and he is a guy, i think he's -- it's very unlikely to me he's going to cast them all aside now. he's not that kind of manager. >> i just want to note one thing here. this is still a close election. and i still have this belief, maybe because i'm in a different role than i used to be that for the great majority of voters, much of this is noise not signal. i don't mean this isn't damaging, but if he's within three or four points and you get into these debates as you mentioned to savannah. and generally challengers do better just by being on the same stage. it's not inconceivable that
people have time to take a different look. >> no -- >> the other thing -- >> hundreds of millions of dollars in ads. you've got 50 days to turn it around. >> and the other part about this is 50 days before the campaign. it's not going to happen. i cannot think of a case where this close, i mean al gore -- >> when did dukakis get rid of his team? wasn't that in the general election? >> el with, it started well before that when he had to dump a senior adviser because of a videotape issue that you don't want to get into. al gore shook his campaign staff up as i point out in my book a year before the election. but i just think -- >> in '04, the clinton people came in to the kerry campaign -- >> right. >> after the convention, relatively late. >> right. >> they were layered on top of the existing group. >> i only mean to suggest that the notion of this campaign is doomed may be a tad --
>> think of like the stories out there that we're covering. the economy, the chicago teachers strike, the kids left out in the cold today. eugene, how does this guy connect in the coming months? i know he has a lot of money and money makes a difference, obviously, in winning elections. but literally, he has absolutely no connection with the bulk of the population. >> well, i think he needs to -- you know, he has to make one. >> how? >> and that's the question. >> well, he hasn't been able to yet. you get the sense that we still haven't seen the authentic mitt romney. whatever that is. i mean, you get the sense that in that setting at that fundraiser he was playing to that crowd. and in other circumstances where he's -- where he's made verbal missteps, he always seems to be playing to that crowd. and the question is, what is the core? what does he really believe?
and what does he really intend to do by extension? and that's the message that's not coming across. who is this guy? >> so, gene, do you agree with jeff, gene? because i feel this way, we've got a long way to go. in mitt romney wins three debates and they spend their $500 million wisely, you can move voters in ten swing states and win this thing still. >> well, yeah. i mean, it's still close. we'll see if this latest thing moves the needle at all, but, in fact, look, president obama is a bit ahead. the polls agree that there is a -- there is a definite lead there now. but it's not a huge lead, and of course, it can be reversed. if you look at it from the obama point of view, it's like, you know, this guy's still close that given all the missteps. so i'm sure they're not counting any chickens in chicago. >> right. >> and we saw last week what events can do to shake up a
race. and, you know, can go in obama's favor, can go in romney's favor too. so we've got a long way. >> i disagreed with the governor's line in his convention speech about i'm not here to stop the rise of the oceans, i'm here to help americans because i think healing a planet's not a bad goal. but what he's undercut here. it was his -- it was more effective line than any i've heard all year. the problem is what the obama folks and what the outside groups are going to do with the 47% is he's going to say he doesn't care about you and he just said it. and so he's not going to help you. >> and just to jeff's opponent, i think you're totally right, i think joe's totally right that mitt romney, it's still a close election, all that stuff is true. but every time he makes these mistakes, every time this has happened, it ratchets up what he has to do in that first debate. because every one of these errors puts more pressure on him to perform extraordinarily well and beat barack obama in to submission. >> you know, the 30-second ads
that the obama team will be able to run the last two weeks of the campaign. go back to i like firing people, i would let the market tank. you can go through them all. the 30-second ads are just devastating, and he just put the exclamation point on that 30-second ad. and i don't know how he gets around it. i think it's -- but he can win the debates. anything can happen with this much money, but my gosh, he's making it difficult for himself and he's making it tougher also for republican candidates who are trying to win in swing districts and win senate races. eugene robinson, thank you. >> that was being kind. boy, ouch. >> your column -- in the "washington post" today on the chicago teachers strike. when we come back, the chair of the senate budget committee kent conrad. >> in the tank.
the only thing they can do is keep trying to bluff their way through until november. and hope that you won't call them on it. but understand, cincinnati, look, i want to work with them to reduce the deficit. i've said, you know, if the republicans, you know, need more love, if they want me to walk the dog or wash their car, i'm happy to do it. >> he should just be -- >> how about inviting him over to the white house when they're in the minority, that might be a good start. >> yes, president obama on the campaign trail in ohio yesterday. here with us now, democratic senator for north dakota and the chairman of the budget committee
senator kent conrad. >> senator, you are a hero of mine in a town where i have few heroes. and one of the reasons why is because your issue has been the issue that really propelled me to get involved in public service. we had bob woodward on yesterday, a very depressing story, but a story that we've all heard behind the scenes. how do we break this impasse between republicans and democrats, the president and the house? how do we get a budget deal? >> you know, i think it's entirely possible after the election. you know, i laid before the senate simpson/bowles. and i said we're not going to vote on it now because i know people aren't ready to vote on it yet, but after the election, maybe colleagues will be prepared, republicans and democrats to move forward. >> such fear. your own caucus doesn't want you to put out a budget. republicans will talk about how long it's been since democrats
in the senate have put a budget out. i certainly know that's not because of you. but there's extreme pressure for democrats no the to show their hands. can you believe you would get to a stage in your career in the united states senate where you weren't even allowed to put out an annual budget? >> well, look, let me deal with that issue. because i think there's a misunderstanding about whether or not a budget has been passed or not. i would say the other side of the story is last year, instead of a budget resolution, which is what the republicans are talking about, we passed an actual budget law. and as you know, a resolution's purely a congressional document, never goes to the president for his signature. so last year we passed the budget control act, an actual law that limits spending for ten years. no budget i know of has limited spending for ten years. cut $900 billion from the domestic accounts. in addition, you'll remember that budget control act said, look, we're going to give
special power to a special committee to reform the tax system. if they don't, we're going to put in place another $1.2 trillion of spending cuts. >> well, it sounds good -- >> let me finish this point. >> no, we've posted another $1 trillion deficit, there's no plan to balance the budget until 2040, 2045. you've got to agree with me, i mean, we're in a mess fiscally, an absolute mess. a train wreck is coming. >> look, both of these are true. last year, we passed the biggest spending cut package ever passed, over $2 trillion. that's a fact. so woodward said yesterday, there have been no spending cuts passed during this obama administration. that's just flatly wrong. it's just wrong. >> spending cuts compared to what? i mean, you look at the spending over the past four years, we've never had that much of a spike in spending, as well. so if you come off of that a little bit, great.
but we're still $16.5 trillion in debt, $22 trillion in debt. >> there's another part of this where you and i -- >> there's no positive spinning here, is there? >> well, on two points that were made yesterday, there was a factual difference. one, no spending cuts. in fact, the budget control act passed last year, $2 trillion of spending cuts put in place. that's the biggest spending cut package ever. second point, yesterday it was said hasn't been a budget for three years. in fact, the budget control act, and i've got the language right here. says that this will -- >> you guys have not put a budget resolution out because harry reid told you he didn't want that to happen. >> no, that's not what happened. that's common wisdom, but that isn't what happened. instead of a resolution, we passed an actual law. >> i heard you say that. >> for two years. >> all right. >> look, what we need is the
longer term plan. that's why i put before the senate bowles/simpson. and bowles/simpson would reduce deficits and debt by $4 trillion if we could get it passed. colleagues aren't ready to do it before an election, i think that's understandable. the big chance is after the election. >> didn't you urge the president not to endorse bowles/simpson? >> i did. >> why? >> because i believed that house republicans would immediately oppose it. look what happened in bowles/simpson. in bowles/simpson, which the president has been accused of not supporting, his members of bowles/simpson, he had six appointees. in the senate, five of the six representatives voted for bowles/simpson. the house representatives, five of the six voted against it, including paul ryan. so, you know, the problem wasn't the president's representatives. the problem wasn't the representatives of the senate, the republicans and democrats, the problem was the house
republicans and democrats. >> so jeff greenfield, you have the house republicans passing budgets that the democrats and the senate and the president immediately eviscerate, paul ryan passes a medicare plan that's immediately demagogued. on the senate side, you've got the president's debt commission that republicans and the house won't endorse. seems like we're headed towards that fiscal cliff and we're all going to fall off. i hope you have parasails on. >> they create the doomsday device which is going to blow up the entire world because nobody could conceivably ever trigger it. but of course, the movie ends with it being triggered. and one of the things i think -- if i can take the long view is, we are now, and you're about to leave this, but we are now at a state of dysfunction. in the operation of our political system that is unlike anything that i've seen. >> yep. >> you may have to go back to the decade before the civil war.
and i hope i'm not being -- >> maybe when there were canings on the house floor. >> well, they couldn't hold the house union together. this is so much a factor of theater as opposed to reality. as opposed to people confronting the bigger stuff. i almost find this conversation is like -- is like here and the issue is up here. >> john heilemann. >> senator, let me ask you a question. there's two operative theorys on -- the democratic theory is if president obama gets reelected, the fever will break. and the extremists and the house republican caucus will somehow recede and now a deal will be possible. not just in terms of the fiscal cliff, but in terms of a grand bargain. republicans say, you know, mitt romney actually given the failures of obama to get both sides to work together over the last four years, mitt romney's better positioned. talk about the different political dynamics that will play out in both cases. if obama wins and if romney wins. how do the tectonic plates shift
to get us to a deal? >> here's what i believe. and this is -- the place where i agree with joe and we're on an unsustainable course. we're borrowing 40 cents of every dollar, that can't continue much longer. if obama wins, i believe there's a moment of opportunity in the lame duck session to have a plan laid out, and by the way, the good news is, there's a group of eight of us, that our colleagues have asked to put together a plan. so if colleagues are ready to act and hopefully they will be, that we have done the homework. and we are working very hard. we've got, i think, very close to an agreement on a framework that could be passed in a lame duck that would give the responsibility of cutting spending, reform entitlements, yes, raise revenue, but not by raising tax rates. and that that plan could then be put in place. but, look, it's going to take really senate to come together,
the house to come together. and to me, the big question is exactly what it was in bowles/simpson. the president's representatives voted yes, the representative of the senate voted yes, the representative of the house voted no. and that's going to be -- >> and the budget chairman of the senate told the president not to support it. >> no, no, no. what i said to him was don't endorse it. go out and make the case just as you've made many times on this show and that's why i was watching yesterday. >> and you make. >> and i've made for five years. judd gregg and i worked out a plan to have a commission. you'll remember it was voted down to have a statutory commission. then we weighed in and it's all covered in woodward's book. we weighed in to get this presidential commission. and i believe there is a chance coming very soon because reality requires it. all the tax cuts are going to expire.
we're going to have the sequester, the 1.2 trillion of additional spending cuts from the budget control act going to take effect next year. the alternative minimum tax is going to come back on, the doc fix is not in place. that means those doctors are going to take a 27% cut. there's a reality moment coming soon. >> let us hope that members of both sides embrace that reality. mr. chairman, thank you for coming. >> senator, thank you. >> come back. >> and thanks for not wearing a tie. >> yeah. i did that just for you. >> well, i think you look a little better than he does. >> yeah, mika's really on my outfit today. >> what is this? seriously? >> whatever i take the trash out -- >> i like it. i like it. >> i dress like a victim. >> looks like someone threw up on you. >> somebody actually did. >> thank you so much, senator. coming up, nbc's political director chuck todd is going to be with us. and the newly released videotape
of mitt romney at a private fundraiser. and we're going to ask chuck what he expects mitt romney to do to turn the campaign around. >> oh, great. >> we shall return. >> now are we ready? >> we're ready. >> are you going to count down. >> mika, count down. >> three, two, one, do it -- >> all right. everybody. >> thank you, mr. mayor. >> fifth anniversary. i don't think anybody thought you'd make the fifth day. losing weight clicked for me when i had everything
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all right. 39 past the hour. jeff greenfield, your new ebook, "43: when gore beat bush" a political fable. discuss. >> discuss. when i was thinking about this counterfactual. any recount would've put the presidency in george w. bush's hands because all of the decision makers, whether it was the florida legislature, the house of representatives, whoever. so what i did was what i like to do is find one tiny little change. and the tiny change was ilean gonzalez' mother does not drown, she survives the ship wreck, gets reunited.
>> takes him back to cuba. >> doesn't want to deal with that family because that's her husband's family. quietly takes him back to cuba. there is no issue that riles the cuban-american community, and according to one prominent latino pollster, that issue probably cost al gore in florida maybe 50,000 votes. >> no atf for aid, no spanish radio, just -- so gore is president. he gets elected president, this is counterfactual book. what happens moving forward? >> well, when i went out to push the last book i did, people always said why don't you do 2000 again? because the assumption on the part of disaffected democrats is that it would have been great if gore would have been elected. as you know, the house would have been republican. i believe that the republicans would have been as resistant to gore as these current republicans were to obama. they would not have wanted to see him succeed. and that would have been 12 years of a successful democratic presidency. >> right.
>> and it would have been very tangled up in partisan politics. so that it doesn't go well. the obviously more interesting question is what about 9/11? and on that one i did a lot of reporting. i think when you do a counterfactual, you try to get as close to one plausible reality. >> what did you find? >> so what i found is that gore would have been far more on the case than bush was. because the bush people still had a cold war mentality. they had left in '93, didn't know from al qaeda. >> condi was worried about russia -- >> and worried about iraq. i think gore would've done far more, but in my book, you know what bureaucracy is like. a president can say let's do x and then down to the bureaucracy there's still in the mentality. 9/11 not only happens, but because of one of the quirks of fate that i think govern so much of history, it becomes worse. and i also think that if gore had been president, the politics of 9/11 would have been very different.
i think he would have been far less governed a united country. i think the where were you f for 1/2 years would have been a much more prevalent theme on the part of people who didn't like al gore. so i my point is in my counterfactual history, yes, gore's elected president, but the idea things go well, not so much. >> jon meacham. >> do you think -- >> would he have grown his beard? >> what about iraq? i think the pressure on al gore to invade iraq, to go to war in iraq would have been intense because the republicans in the congress would have been pushing that. a lot of democrats thought that saddam hussein was a bad guy who had to go. there was an iraq liberation act that clinton signed under pressure. and this to me is the most interesting counterfactual. who would have been vice president of the united states? joe liberman. there's no more hawkish
figure -- >> we would have been building condos in yemen. >> joe liberman would be in the popular consciousness of what dick cheney is now. >> to me, that's one of the most fascinating counter factuals. joe liberman as vice president, and it would have been a principled argument. he believed this -- >> as did cheney. >> that it would have been changed the whole middle east. i have some fun with the idea of joe liberman as vice president in a post 9/11 war pushing al gore to do something on iraq. >> all right. this is fascinating, jeff. of course, we loved your last book, the new ebook is out today. and you know, kids all across america are going to be rushing to buy "43." >> hey, it's $1.99. >> that's it. >> that's it. >> counterfactuals are so sexy. >> they are sexy for dorks like you and me, meacham. coming up next, the president and the chief justice
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ability. >> preserve, protect, and defend the constitution of the united states. >> preserve and protect and defend the constitution of the united states. >> so help you god? >> so help me god. >> congratulations, mr. president. >> 48 past the hour, chief justice john roberts administering the oath of office at the inauguration in 2009, slight problem there. an omen, perhaps, of an impending rocky relationship between the current executive and judicial branches. joining us now, legal analyst and staff writer for "the new yorker," jeffrey toobin, the author of "the oath," the obama white house and the supreme court. good to have you with us. >> good morning. >> meacham likes the pictures. >> he loves the pdf. jeffrey, is there a more fascinating decision than the decision that was handed down by the roberts court on the affordable care act? >> most fascinating and probably most important. you know, 35 million people will or will not get insurance based on one vote in the supreme
court. and it was unexpected, certainly by me. but -- >> by everybody. by everybody. >> just about. and i think it was in many respects now in retrospect now that i've done the reporting, the summation of just what a powerful intellect and political thinker john roberts is. >> can you explain? because i've explained to some of my conservative friends that don't follow the court closely, while they hated the conclusion, roberts conclusion, in many ways, i've heard you say this, it empowers roberts moving forward. and on the big issue, the commerce clause, he kept it as narrow as he could under the circumstances. >> right. most of us and certainly the argument going into the case was all about whether the commerce clause of article one gave congress the right to pass this. >> can you compel people to engage in commerce? >> correct. and roberts said no. which was a tremendous conservative victory. but then he turned the corner and he said, well, congress also has the power to tax and this was a legitimate tax under that
part of the power. >> this move obviously a brilliant political move on the court. is roberts as good as anybody you've seen over the past let's say quarter century, 30, 40 years politically in working of the court? >> better. >> better than anybody. >> he's brilliant. >> and a better writer. you know, i think the best writer in the history of the supreme court was robert jackson, who served in the '40s and '50s, fascinating, brilliant guy. john roberts is an elegant, beautiful stylist, which is the exception rather than the trial supreme court. he's remarkable man. >> so john roberts proves to both conservatives and liberals that a vote's just not enough, right? we have the harriet meyers example in 2005. a lot of conservatives, going to be a vote for the conservatives. you want if you are a progressive, somebody with a sort of intellect, a conservative. >> you do let's not kid ourselves. john roberts did not discover his inner moderate last june. >> no. >> he is a very conservative
justice. when you look at the range of issues, going to have affirmative action up very soon, the future of the voting rights act, same-sex marriage. abortion ultimately. and he will be conservative on those issues -- what he has done -- >> i'm saying he knows how to navigate the waters. >> that's right. he is a brilliant politician, which is a skill that you need as a judge. >> jon meachum? >> compare and contrast your two protagonists because obama is a pretty good politician. >> he is a very good politician. but the paradox is barack obama, this liberal chicago former constitutional law professor, is not that interested in legal change. he is someone who believes that change comes from the ballot box, not the court house. and even though he is respectful of the civil rights pioneers bike thurgood marshall this is not someone who put a lot of emphasis on the courts starting with a very underrated figure in recent american history, i
think, edwin meese. he came to washington and said we are going to change the courts. republicans cared about the courts. obama hasn't even bothered to submit nominees for a lot of the vacancies on the federal bench. >> unbelievable. >> just not something he has put a lot of emphasis on. fairness, a very busy four years, a lot of other things going on but indicative of the way democrats and republicans approach these issues now. >> at the time went affordable care act, decision came down, there was some reporting and a lot of speculation on the basis of things that were in some of the -- what the tick tock was on roberts coming right up to the edge, planning to vote the different way and changing his mind about the internal. how much of that tick tock is in the book what happened do you say about it? >> there's a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff about the decision and i think it's important to remember, you know, at the supreme court, decisions are never final until they are announced.
so the idea of changing your vote is not something sinister or inappropriate. it was not 180-degree turn by roberts but he certainly became much more against the law than he was on the friday when they took their first vote. and there's also been a lot of talk about how angry the conservatives were. but sure they were angry but you know what, they are repeat players. and at the supreme court, it doesn't pay to hold grudges because you are going to need your colleagues' vote again. scalia, thomas, alito, they were all very frustrated with roberts, you know what first monday in october, it will be a new day. >> you were in a very small row boat and always shocking to people to find out that anthony scalia invites ruth bader ginsburg over. >> every new year's eve. >> tough be that way, although that is a change. william rhenquist put a big emphasis on their getting allowing. historically, they didn't get along. they were known as nine
scorpions in a bolt >> when william o. douglas had a terrible car accident, the first question everybody asked at the time was where was felix frankfurter, they hated each other so much, they thought that frankfurter split tried kill him. since rhenquist was chief justice, it has been a much more congeal y'all environment. >> the book is "the oath, the obama white house and the supreme court." jeffrey to been, goods to see you. coming on -- coming up -- regis philbin. >> written a book on the supreme court. >> he was on the supreme court. >> for a couple of years. be on the set, right here on "morning joe" and so will we. >> the philbin black. [ male announcer ] did you know, all those screens are sucking moisture
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good morning. it's 8:00 on the east coast, 5 a.m. on the west coast. it's time to wake up and focus, everyone. take a live look at new york city. welcome back to "morning joe." back with us on set, we have jon meachum and john heilemann. >> we begin with news out of afghanistan this morning where the united states military says most joint operations with afghan and american soldiers are going to be suspended until further notice. mika this is horrifying when you look at the fact that u.s. policymakers have been justifying continuing this war in afghanistan based on this -- this -- this -- this lie that we're going to be able to train them and help these people who are shooting and killing our troops, help them run -- >> the longest war and for the longest time, no one who is in charge or who knows about these issues can tell us what winning means. the move comes amid an alarming string of insider attacks, the latest on sunday, that left four
american soldiers dead. yesterday, nato announced it was also scaling back joint operations with afghan security forces. the joint combat patrols are seen as a critical part of the u.s. plan to withdraw from afghanistan by the end of 2014. and just a few hours anxious in the capital of kabul, nine people were killed when a suicide bomber rammed a car packed with explosives into a minibus believed to be carrying foreign aviation workers. >> this is such a meltdown. >> total meltdown. >> we are having such a meltdown here. sometimes it feels like we are the only -- sometimes it feels like we are one of the only media outlets that are talking about this. we have been talking about it for three years nonstop. this is a complete meltdown. we have got, you know, we've got guys running units getting killed. every day, it's something new. >> i also, honestly, i understand the latester can fluffle with mitt romney. >> we are going to talk about it. >> i would like to see people ask him about it and i would
like to hear him comment on exactly what might do. >> you know what i would like to hear? i would like to hear him talk about it and the commander in chief. i would like to heart commander in chief who launched this policy three years ago. i would like to hear what he has to say about it, too. you know why we are not hearing it? because the media is not talking about afghanistan. they just -- i don't understand and i haven't understood for three, four years why we continue this deaccident why the media is not talking about it. willy, one of the frustrations. >> this shut entire rationale, justification for us being in afghanistan b two years from now, two and change, we will turn over the security of the country to the very people who some of whom, not all, obvio obviously, some are killing our troops. not only can we not turn it over to them, we can't work side by side with them t is a brea break down of trust. i don't see how you justify two years of these pictures coming n
>> another suicide attack, it continues, pictures just coming in this morning. these attacks started a long time before a crude video was beamed up on youtube and used as an excuse for anti-american hatred across the globe. john? >> part of the tragedy here is the counter terror strategy worked well and the counterinsurgency strategy, which we have had a longer investment has failed. >> jon meachum, you said this three years, you said we are moving from a counterterrorism strategy in afghanistan that worked to a counter insurgency strategy will not work. dr. brzezinski said this three years ago when he said we are blurring the lines between fighting al qaeda and fighting the taliban. it's two distinctly different thing, not like jon meachum and dr. breeze zin xand others around this table didn't see this thing coming and it continues.
>> joe biden said we can use drone strikes, special forces, we should not triple the number of troops. the big problem is it is not just the tripling of troops, a terrible problem but the problem, again, of just what john said, changing from a counter terror strategy, you want to kill terrorists to a counterinsurgency strategy, which worked in iraq, where you want to rebuild the country.to counterinsurgency strategy, which worked in iraq, where you want to rebuild the country. >> build. >> you can't build a country in the second century. >> is hard to think about, hard to talk about, if anything can be read into the mistake or the complete -- just disregard for the story, it would be in the fact that this wasn't even mentioned in mitt romney's speech, afghanistan, our troops
serving, our way forward in terms of foreign policy, because it's too hard to talk about. i don't understand how they could forget it. they can't forget a huge sector of what's going on in this country. >> why not? >> they did. you know what they did? they avoided it you know why? because it's hard and because they don't think people want to hear about it. >> you know why they avoid it had? they avoided it the same reason the media avoided t. >> i totally agree with that. >> "the new york times," a couple other outlet's, but the american people have avoided it the media avoided it everybody we have talked to want us out there. >> republicans especially as well. eye. >> other global point, if anybody believed there was a selective service draft, military service, any of this would have lapsed past '03, maybe '04. >> let's get politics, keep this story tight and not laster in
it, because i really want to get to chicago before we go to break. >> you are going to chicago this morning? >> a video reported surreptitiously and provided to the liberal magazine "mother jones" obtained by nbc news shows mitt romney speaking at a private fund-raiser last may about the politics of the presidential campaign and disparaging 47% of the american voting population. >> is that -- >> not good. take a listen. >> ahhh! >> you can play it now.
daughters through community college, i wonder what they think about this message. >> yeah. >> but do you notice how comfortable mitt romney was speaking, how if fluid he was? that wasn't the truth. he was halting. he was speaking with great confidence. he believes -- i don't know, you tell me. what was that? >> that is the case the obama campaign made last night. this is a man saying what he believes. this is a window into the real mitt romney. behind closed doors, when he thinks nobody is looking except those whose money he needs this is what he feels this is what he believes. whether or not you think that's true is up to you, the viewer are, but it does reinforce and perhaps set in stone the caricature the obama campaign has done a good job of creating as mitt romney as an unfeeling rich guy. >> gordon gekko meets thurston howell, iii. and necessary this horrible position now where he can't -- if he didn't have the problems that he had with the republican establishment with conservatives, people on the right who want him to double-down on this, who are
arguing this is the right argument, you should make this case, woe just apologize but he can't do that now because he is in so much trouble on that side he is boxed n he can't do the obvious political thing, the right thing to do for the middle of the country, the right is pinning him down. last night, he gaves the press conference, i was speaking inartfully. he was speaking perfectly artfully and clearly. unfortunate lirkts he says that thing, the sentence, the one sentence in here, "i will never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives." that is pretty much every senior citizen in america, pretty much every senior citizen in america on medicare and social security doesn't pay any income tax. that is the one voting group mitt romney a clear advantage over the president with. it is so contemptuous, so condescending. >> people don't think that everybody on this table is lathering, here is why this matters politically, mika, george w. bush and karl rove were brilliant early in bush's
campaigns. this woe campaign in minority neighborhoods. two go to poor schools them would go to places where they knew they would never get the votes. >> yes. >> you know why they did that? because their target audience, the suburban housewives in philadelphia, were swing voters in orlando, explaining we are not the old line republicans. we really do want to help bring children up. and george w. bush really did believe, as jeb does tonigh, to. the problem with this video, i'm con one of the conservatives, push rom knit past several weeks, tell us what you believe in be more ideological what disturbs me and disconnects me from that candidate is the fact i believe conservative policies help 100% of americans. i don't believe it helps the 1%. i really do believe that you don't help waiters and waitresses that won't want to get a better job by raising
taxes on job creators. i just believe it. now, maybe i'm wrong. maybe i'm stupid. maybe i'm shortsighted. maybe history proves that i am wrong. and maybe -- who knows, maybe left-wing economists like paul krugman are right. they could be. but i believe in my heart of hearts wait you help those waitgoers to college if they want to go to college or go to tech school and create a better life for themselves is by getting the federal government off the backs of business owners, cutting taxes, cutting regulation, less spending in washington. i don't look at those 47% people as victims. why i got 70% of the people making under 50,000 i wasn't aimed at the 1%. the 1% can take care of themselves. let's get a job for you.
that's not the romney that we are seeing there. that's not the conservative that does sound like a plutocrat. that does sound like thurston howl, iii. victims? lazy? i mean, come on. >> there's a lot of that i would also argue it sounds like a radical and it doesn't sound like dwight eisenhower, doesn't sound like the way reagan governed. >> by the way, reagan didn't believe that. >> but modern conservatism is burky, you take the reality that fdr created and try to shift the balance a little bit within the spectrum to private enterprise, toward individual responsibility, but you don't tear the whole thing down. you reform, you don't totally roll back. >> there's just symbolic problems that will lead many to laster in a huge way in this, that is this is a guy with a car he will variety this is a guy who won't releaseth his tax returns. ? a guy who didn't pay taxes. >> it seems to me -- >> it's bad.
>> the conservatives that do the best politically are conservatives like paul ryan from a very middle class background, margaret thatcher, shopkeeper's daughter, ronald reagan, a guy that pulled himself up by his bootstraps from the depression in iowa. here with mitt romney -- >> there's no relateability. >> is there a guy so insulated. who dismisses, i'm serious here, a question for my conservative brothers and sisters who dismisses 47% of the american population as victims you know what? i want everybody to vote for the truly conservative candidate. write off 47%? why? >> 47% not just victims basically saying these are 47% of people that are never going to vote for me, i don't care
about them. they are already in obama's column, i'm not going to talk to them. late week, one of the things we talked about on the set was that romney's response to the libyan thing didn't seem serious, didn't seem president a.m., right? >> which by the way, for -- we have got to follow up on this and let you continue, the polls show overwhelmingly, that has hurt him. >> yes. >> it has been devastating to him, people on the right circling the wagons for the past week, i'm sorry. it devastated him. go ahead e >> didn't seem serious, didn't seem presidential, didn't seem big enough for the job. this seems to -- exactly the same way. he seems very -- he seems small. coming up next, nbc news political director chuck todd with his perspective on the leaked romney fund-raiser video. women not lather. maybe just a little. plus, regis is going to be here. >> regis u. >> i will lather in him. >> yes, you will. okay, he joins us on set in just a few minutes.
but first, here is a dylan dreyer with a check of the forecast. >> we are going to see rain affect basically the entire east coast from northern new england stretching all the way down into southern florida. we have showers and storms and some of these storms could be severe later on today. you see lots of lightning moving across the panhandle of florida, heading eastward toward jacksonville. those severe storms are going to make their way into the carolinas, into washington, d.c., up through new york city swim. and we could end up with the potential of wind gusts up to around 40 to 50 miles an hour. right now, the rain is heaviest near pittsburgh through west virginia, moving into western maryland and we are going to see the folks of some stronger storms, especially later on this afternoon into this evening a few isolated tornadoes are possible also. something we will have to keep an eye out for and track. as we go into wednesday, we will start the day off with showers and storm bus we will see increasing sunshine and that should stick around as we get closer to the upcoming weekend. that's the latest check on your weather. you're watching "morning joe," a
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maybe. i don't know. [ laughter ] don't want to do that the first place, i'm not very good at that. [ laughter ] my wife takes care of most of that stuff. [ laughter ] yeah. >> that's quite a reaction shot. you know what friends, doing five years. >> it's five. i feel like -- >> steely dan as is to chris lick the as to jackson browne's "running on empty." >> i'm sorrsorry, who is chris licht? >> it is chuck todd's kryptonite. >> see the chemistry after five years? >> chuck todd jackson browne hater? >> where i start, he ends, where he ends, i start.
chuck, i have heard this song a billion times, like "layla." i can hear, "born to run." i love it not you. >> puts any a happy place. it's the last song i do when i'm running or something. when i'm trying to finish that last half mile. >> he is like. >> push yourself. it's the -- >> chuck hate thus song. >> really? >> with us now, chuck todd. chuck, my god. where do we start? this video? >> how do we take the story down the road a little more? >> put this in perspective, start with the clint eastwood speech through this being released last night. >> that's what you have to look at it is sort of the -- this comes on top of everything else. this is a campaign that has been dealing with nothing but setbacks for -- i think if we go back to the eastwood chair moment, we are going back three weeks now, but you know, sort of missed opportunity at the convention, so, whatever chances
they had of trying to build a lead, it didn't happen there. fast forward to a successful democratic convention. then you have the blunder in how he handled the initial criticism on the middle east crisis, throw in the infighting gone public on his campaign and then this gets dropped 24 hours later. the accumulation, never mind that there's a whole clear bump in the polls for the president, economic optimism at an all-time high, which frankly, appears to be all thanks to bill clinton and the pitch he made about saying, hey, we are on the right track, seeing this in polls all over, a new nbc/"wall street journal" poll tonight, we will check in to see if we are seeing the same trend there, hint hint. and then this video happens. what i'm sort of -- like where to begin? >> yeah. >> what was the point of that press conference last night by mitt romney? if he wasn't going to walk something back, if all he was going to do was agree with what
he said and say he was inart, you could have stayed this in a press release. i feel like he still has to answer for some of the more specific things he stayed in this thing. >> how do you not make changes at a juncture like this sfwhancht do you change? what do you change in the problem goes mitt romney is not a good camp paper, okay? >> don't you make changes -- >> we have known this, not good at. this how do you tinker with the manager? >> because wouldn't you, at this point, want to at least make the appearance of -- of turning things around? >> the red sox, it is not bobby valentine's fault they sucked
last year and this year, they are going to have to fire bobby valentine. people that fire bobby valentine say he can't stay on, the same -- >> giving up on bobby v. already? >> i'm not. i'm not. >> do that. >> you know what got to turn the page. >> you got to do something. romney complained yesterday, talking about a process story, creating more of a process story, but he is right. they are caught in this -- in this downward spiral of process stories. one of two things has to happen. they have to somehow turn that page. you can turn it by ending the process story by doing something big in terms of the campaign, or you can do it on substance in some way. do something -- but you got to do something to get out of this endless cycle of process story feeding, process story feeding, process story. they got to do something. that press conference last night was not t. >> making one blunder after another, willey. the press conference last night was a blunder. the press conference on monday was a blunder.
yeah. somebody is directing mitt romney, even if it's mitt romney, he needs a friend from the outside to come and say, buddy, you cannot run a presidential campaign. >> chuck, could you make the case though that this is a terrible week or two weeks or three weeks, as you said going back to the clint eastwood speech, and that we may look a month from now back and sort of forget about this if things change, the economic conditions on the ground are still bad. i guess the question is are we making too much of this in the moment and is it really as big long term? >> the problem you is don't have days to waste. he has had a lot of wasted days. the president rarely wastes days. let me point to another problem that hasn't gotten touched on with romney over the last couple of weeks and that is the campaign schedule he is keeping. he does maybe an event a day, by the way, not always in a swing state. take today, for instance, he's got two fund-raisers, one in salt lake city and one in dallas, texas. he will not -- when he goes to miami tomorrow for an event, i believe it will be the first
time in five days that he has campaigned in a battleground state. i think if you're looking for what do you do differently if you're mitt romney, go act like a candidate is that gonna -- that wants this thing. you know what bill clinton did when he was in crisis in '92 in the guy, all of a sudden, just did town hall after a town hall, did new hampshire. what did john mccain do when everybody walked out on his campaign, he picked up his own bag bags at the airport and started doing town hall, town ham after town hall. campaign to death. look like you want this thing. mitt romney's done three event -- had three scheduled events in battleground states in the last week. he is not acting like a candidate that wants this thing at times. >> jon meachum, as far as having a campaign staff at the top, i think, not eddie gillespie you eddie gillespie is one of the best in the business, he is great and great people working for him, but he very torn the people that plan it had out, the
strategists that do what rove did so masterfully for bush in 2000 and 2004, they don't have that, they are directionless. i can tell you 1988 when bush was down by 19 percentage points, comes out of the convention are the first week, i think, he was in boston harbor talking about how bad the harbor was and how pollute and that week he was the environmental president because james bakker planned it perfectly. the next week, he was education president, the next week, he was a jobs president, the next week, avenues patriotic president. bakker laid it out for everybody. this is a mishmash. what's he doing? >> we talk about rove a lot but bakker is the gold standard. in fact, he -- this is yes think talk about shakeup right now doesn't make any sense because where did bakker's gold standard turn bronze? in '92 when he didn't come back from the state department until labor day. at that point, it was just too late. i think chuck's point's really
interesting about the -- chuck works you agree with the word lethargy, is that fair? and to my mind, just what is -- what is the one-sentence rationale for romneys acandidates circumstance leaving aside everything we talked about? what is it? >> i'm not barack obama. >> that's never enough. >> i know, but you asked me. >> is not enough anymore. >> chuck todd, i have always said you always said, and i think you agree with me exif you are run august congressional ray could you beat something with nothing. if you are running a presidential ray you have to give your vision for america. and mitt romney's vision for america has been, to this point, i'm not barack obama. >> right. by the way, another part of this video thing, there's a -- i'm curious what jon meachum thinks about this there was something about bush the first time he ran, reagan, when he ran and got elected the first time, obama, got elected the first time you clinton. the first time -- for your first term, you should aspire to be a
65% president, meaning you're not going to win two-thirds of the voters but you hope to have two-thirds of the voters rooting for you after the election. he is already in this sort of what i call second term mode, where he is already sort of conceding, you know what, we are hopelessly divided, we are hopelessly partisanized, hopelessly people lar rised, i'm never going to be able to breakthrough to the other half that is a pessimistic view of the country. >> a way to lose a campaign. i said this morning, chris christie, he gets elected, the morning after the he gets elected, he calls corey beaker, where does he go? he goes to inner city newark and he is walking around inner city newark, a lot of shocked political leader there is, basically saying why are you here? this morning, we wake up, chris christie's approval rating in new jersey you 59%. almost 60% in the bluest of blue states. if chris christie said 47% of the people are going to hate me because i'm going after public
unions, he would be sitting 47, 46, 45%. it is a state of mind. chris christie doesn't give up a vote he doesn't give up -- you are right. this is such defeatist thinking had, 47% of americans are victims, losers, never going to vote for me. >> moochers. >> that is not how you are going to win. and i can't worry about him. >> but that's -- >> chuck, i can't -- i'm not gonna worry about them. would reagan say that? would the shopkeeper's daughter, thatcher, no. those are the people they believe they helped. >> seems you are conceding what, you know, what's we in the beltway say, this town's hopelessly divided, the country is hopelessly divided, if you want to be leader of the american people, you're supposed to breakthrough that. >> all right. now listen, mika, we are going to do something we don't usually do. >> what these? >> i don't like advising campaigns, just not what i do. >> i know. i know. >> i have found mitt romney's
new campaign manager and going to go even give him the judas kiss. >> coming up on "morning joe." >> oh, there he is. >> he is like cher. it is regis, and it is next. >> hi, regis. >> hi, everybody. >> come say hi to mommy. >> i'm here. >> how are you? >> that's why i'm here. >> look that the guy. >> my favorites. >> regis is up next. >> i don't think it should be our lead. >> that's the a copout. >> easy. >> i'm done with the paris hilton story. >> okay. okay. i am. fine. >> why are you such a journalist? >> because my paris hilton -- >> what a statement. that is a statement. >> bye bye. >> about the state of journalism in our country. >> changed the world, mika brzezinski. >> happy fifth birthday, morning joe. >> happy fifth birthday, in this
regis philbin, author of the memoir "how i got this way." >> he talked about that, that is disturbing, how he got this way. >> i know. i need another drink. >> i came here to bish all of you a happy birthday because i can't be here on friday when i hear you're going to cut a cake. >> really? >> nbc actually is going to provide a cake. >> we didn't know about that. >> a huge cake. >> going to cut it and it's your fifth anniversary. >> it's our fifth anniversary. >> that's what i hear. five guys you guys have been here. >> feels like 55. >> holy hem. >> but three hours a day for five year sass long time. >> it's killing me. it's killing me, regis. as the smile ran away from his face. >> how do you put up -- one catastrophe -- >> wait a minute, why are you asking him that question? >> a lot of drugs. a lot of drugs it should be asked to me. >> absolutely right. mika carries own her back. you are a lucky man, too. >> oh, my god. >> willie, she carries the show? she is atlas. >> everywhere we go blow by joe, blow by me, right to mika.
>> 'cause i am sort of warm. >> the warmth. >> gentle, warm person. >> so, regis, regis, you are getting back into tv. i got to tell you, all the kids are excited about t. >> what kids? who? >> the kids on the street, talking about it. really a? what do they say? is this regis? >> getting back on with rachel ray. >> once a month, i'm going to come and be rachel's friend and guest. >> is she paying you to be her friend sniff to pay people -- >> more than i get here, i will tell you that. meachum and i were talking about this. >> we were discussing. this. >> is awful. >> and willy, forget about that. >> forget about t. >> oh, my god. >> i want to ask you something, really, five years, how did you get this job to begin with? >> oh, that's good story. >> because this is a very -- msnbc, liberal, fox conservative but you are a republican congressman from the south somewhere. >> somewhere. somewhere. thank you for reading my bio. >> how did you get this job?
>> you know, we went there and i told phil griffin that i could talk for as many -- >> no you had a power point presentation. >> actually -- >> a power point presentation. i lining this. >> no we told phil exactly what we wanted to do and we said, you know, enough of the dumb three-minute interviews. enough of the news you can use sort of stuff. we want to do 15-minute interviews. we want to get economist. we want to get foreign policy specialists and was so counterintuitive, phil said go ahead. also nobody else that could fill three hours and would work for -- they give us some of the -- some proof of purchase sales. >> right. >> them give us some movie ticket, we get ben began's $5 off coupons. and so we did it for free. >> only appetizer's. >> papa john's. prufrnlt with him, meaning ka, when he made this power presentation? >> no i came along a limb later. >> how did we find mika? i'm curious about this whole -- >> so the night before i was going to gone, i can't believe he is interviewing us, i meet
mika for the first time and we are in the newsroom. and she insults me. >> well -- >> what did she say? >> you know, see, i did this show, asks scarborough country" in florida on the boat all day 15 minutes before, i swim in my swimsuit, go to "scarborough country." and mika would do a 30-second news break. >> a freelance gig. >> she would go "scarborough country." hey, dude that woman is making fun of your show. this went on and on. i said, i know you are making fun of my show? she says, how can i make fun of a show i've never seen? seriously, i picked up a phone, called phil griffin, i found our co-host. willy, from the very beginning, was dish knew we had to have willie. >> like a son to you. >> no he is not like a son to me. like a brother. like a flaming -- he is a flaming super nova.
womenly is a so willy is a superstar. >> i contributed to "scarborough country." >> i didn't know that. >> before we knew you. >> we walked down secaucus, throw footballs across the secaucus warehouse where we were. >> old liz claiborne outlet. >> so yeah, do that anyway, mika insults me and i immediately go, she is perfect for the show. phil agreed about a year and a half later and the rest is history. now, phil did not want her at first. >> no. >> no kidding, phil didn't like her? >> didn't think it worked. >> what was phil's problem? >> what do you think it was? look at me. >> tip is great. sfim a genius. >> should be said, you were terrible at selling your book. you were coming -- >> come on. >> how did you get this way? >> how did you get this way? >> nice to me with the book and now the paper back version is coming out. >> oh, my god.
>> regis has to go back on tour. how many times can i go around with this book? >> so, regis, "how i got this way." tell us about the book. >> how i got this way? >> the name of the book. >> yes, of course. >> i'm trying to help you here. what's wrong with you? get him a doctor, will you stages of dementia. what are you, ronald reagan all of a sudden? >> got hot. >> what's wrong with you? >> sit there two and a half hours, he is standing up, raising -- >> what's wrong with you sell your book. >> i have an idea. let's try parallelism. >> i don't know what that is. >> gone from -- all right. we have heard about the genesis story here. >> yeah. >> tell us your first job in television. >> i love you this. >> oh, no. >> it was right here, nbc. >> right. >> huh? >> right here in this building. >> with? >> with -- well, my first job was i was the page and i sat people at the beginning of "the
tonight show," which made nbc billions of dollars. >> did you get any -- >> steve hallen was working down there. and i was up on the second balcony of the hudson theater on 44th street exwaiting to seat the people while they rehearsed and he had a repertory company of louie nye and tom posten and bill dana, steve lawrence and edie gorme were the singers. >> love those kids. >> out of new york city. there was steve allen at the piano, make the piano, this is during rehearsal, everything he said was funny and i'm sitting at this thing saying what am i doing in this business? i have no talent. listen to this man. he place the piano. then years later, when i finally got a break, came out of san diego with my own talk show, i went on the road. and, of course, i was -- i was following steve allen. >> oh, my goodness. >> in "the steve allen show" in hollywood. so, i would go on the road to present "regis." and these old geezers covering
tv and radio at the time say we never heard of you. i say, well i have a talk show in san diego. and anyway, i am three in hollywood. they said, what is your talent? and i said, humma, humma. i don't tising. i'm not a comedian. >> bada ba. >> that is how it started. and i did "the mentalist." >> right. >> kids during my page time here, i covered the eddie fish per cok -- eddie fisher coca ce hour. >> i absolutely loft eddie fisherfish fisher coca-cola hour. more with regis when we return.
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all right, willie, bring us in, buddy. >> big win. >> big win. saturday, north dame, michigan. south bend, indiana. 3-0, notre dame, the irish. >> they seem to be rolling good, i'm amazed they beat michigan state to tell you the truth. we always have trouble with michigan state. they are a good team this year, michigan state. they were ranked 10 or 11 and we were in the 20s somewhere when we played them and then now, it's reversed. north dame is ranked 11th. >> looking pretty good. how many of those games do you go to a year? >> i'm going to the michigan game. yeah. >> fantastic. >> absolutely. >> going to be handing out your book. >> "how i got this way." >> doesn't even know what it's called. >> so, i'm with eddie fisher -- it's coca-cola time, 7:30 on nbc. >> it was great zfrnlt elizabeth taylor hang around? >> she wasn't around then. that was even before her. >> okay. >> so they have -- this is good-bye for kidd fisher for the summer. he is going to walking the aisle, the kids are gonna crush
him, but he will fight his way to the top of the thing, where the emrate isser is, the sixth floor of the elevatoe er aror ah floor of the elevator to the sixth floor. they need a page to hold the elevator door so eddie could walk. >> please testimony me that's you. >> i called my mother, who never wanted me to get involved in television. i said mom, i'm going to be on tv, friday night, tonight, as a matter of fact, i'm going to be there watch, the end of the show, eddie fisher and i will be together. sure enough, kidd fisher sings "lady of spain, i adore you." >> my favorite. go ahead. >> he sings, fights his way through to the end, i'm holding the he will variety. eddie gets in the elevator, lets the door close and eddie fisher goes on vacation. i run down the hall way, sixth
floor, pick up the phone, call my mother in the bronx. >> she had to be crying. >> i said, mom, did you see me on television. >> so nice. >> you know what my poor mother said? where was eddie going? i said, mom, it doesn't matter. >> we will be right back. >> we shall return. for... the future of our medicare and social security. man 1: i want facts. straight talk. tell me your plan... and what it means for me. woman 2: i'm tired of the negative ads and political spin. that won't help me decide. man 2: i earned my medicare and social security. and i deserve some answers. anncr: where do the candidates stand on issues that... affect seniors today and in the future? find out with the aarp voters' guide at earnedasay.org
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