tv MSNBC Live MSNBC February 24, 2013 12:00pm-2:00pm PST
if republicans and democrats get together this week and take a look at the president's plan which he put on the table to save $85 billion this does not have to happen. congress returns to work with five days left before the across the board spending cuts take effect. is that enough time to hammer out a last minute deal? and what does it mean to you. transportation secretary ray lahood insists there is still time. our experts break it down and talk about the on going sequester blame game. plus, big news from afghanistan. president hamid karzai is requesting them pull out within two weeks. the reason plus how officials are responding. stewart 33. >> and that fiery nascar crash leaving questions about the safety of speedways. a lot of news coming out of
daytona today. we will take you there, as well. but we begin with our top political headlines. there could be a deal in the senate on guns. a bipartisan panel may reach agreement on tougher background checks for gun buyers. the washington post reports the talks led by two democrats and two republicans are expected to earn more gop spurt in the coming days. the nra's president said the president has done nothing serious to reduce the threat of gun violence. >> even in his state of the union address where he laid out his second term agenda, president obama made not one mention, not one word of the need to improve security for our schools. why? because they're not serious about taking steps that actually work. >> and ann and mitt romney will
sit down for their first television interview since the election. the couple will be appearing on fox news sunday. with five days until massive budget cuts known as the sequester, as the budget cuts could take effect members of both parties are pointing lots of fingers. members of congress may be slowly making their ways back to d.c. but governors from all over the country are already there for the national governor association conference. with the sequester looming they are not happy campers. joining me from the white house with peter alexander. what kind of pressure are the governors putting on the white house? >> they will have several opportunities. tomorrow during a series of remarks made by the president and vice president as thivisit
the winter meetings. it is clear by a variety of governors on the sunday morning talk shows. among them martin o'malley of maryland all say the federal government be it the president and congress all need to act to avoid these automatic budget cuts. $85 billion, as you know. here on "meet the press" was bobby jindal of louisiana. >> but the president needs to step up to the plate and say to congress here is how you can cut $85 billion. delay the exchanges to work with states on waver rrs of flexibility. you are not cutting a program that has started yet. >> as one governor said the sequester was intended to be a hammer and not a policy. somehow we are one week away. >> peter alexander from the white house we will check back with you. thank you, good sir. what does the sequester mean for you? what can be cut?
here are a few examples of domestic cuts compiled by the "new york times." just a hand full. it will result in shortages of meat, eggs and poultry. that could push prices higher. two week furloughs for law enforcement. that could of course lead to travel delays. also, about 70,000 children could lose access to head start and a cut in the rental assistance program could put some 125,000 families at risk of losing their homes. that is just the tip of the iceberg. i want to bring in senior washington correspondent for politico, bill schneider. jonathan, how realistic is it that we see the kinds of cuts that we just listed there? >> i think we'll have to wait to see even when the white house talks about it. they phrase the cuts as could-be
because the specific cuts they are not 100% sure about. in terms of whether the sequester will go into effect and whether people will feel some impact it is almost 100% certainty. >> transportation secretary bill lahood on "meet the press" this morning. >> we know that a lot of people are flying and weerp rr not making this up, david. we are not making this up in order to put pain on the american people. we are required to cut a billion dollars. >> how serious of an impact could this have on travel? and other critical parts of the nation's infrastructure? >> it could have a big impact on travellers. most fly maybe a couple of times a year so it won't have that broad an impact. that is one of the problems with the cuts. they won't be felt immediately.
they will be felt over time. it could result in a recession. it is hard to see how president obama would escape responsibility for that. but the good news is the bad news. it won't be felt immediately but the bad news is it won't be felt immediately. for those of you saying it is a catastrophe a lot of you won't feel it. >> not everyone believes the sequester portends disaster. this is fox news sunday. >> the crisis is made up. it has been created. i didn't support the sequester because that's a stupid way to cut spending. it's the only way washington, republicans and democrats are ever going to get out of both parties some spending cuts. >> is that true? is this the only way? >> it's not the only way. both sides have been bucking for a melt down. in august 2011 it was the debt ceiling and then the fiscal cliff. these things were averted with
short term solutions. this particular solution, this sequestration allows both sides to have the melt down that they have been jockeying for and it is less impactful than a government shut down and probably less than breaching the debt ceiling. it is a managed risk here. i don't know that i agree with senator coburn that it is an entirely made up problem but i do think that it is something that is less impactful than a lot of the other fiscal debates that we have had. >> as is frequently the case in washington, d.c. the blame game. bob woodward writing the automatic spending cuts were initiated by the white house. his colleague declined writing he disagrees saying the sequester was appunt. the point was to give both sides a face-saving way to raise the debt ceiling even though the tax issue was stopping them from
agreeing to a deficit deal. why at this point is the pointing of the finger so important? >> because when the pain comes somebody is going to want to know who is responsible. the white house did make a miscalculation. they thought republicans would never accept sequester cuts if it meant cuts in defense spending. the republicans are saying we will take the cuts in defense spending because spending is spending. i think the white house does have the upperhand in one respect. the republicans think they have a better message but the white house has a better messenger. who can compete are president obama? john boehner? mitch mcconnell, marco rubio? nobody for the republicans can make the case as the president can for the democrats. we are also following news in afghanistan on this sunday. hamid karzai ordering all u.s. special forces troops out of the key afghan province and only giving them two weeks to leave.
we are following developing news in afghanistan right now. a spokesman for president hamid karzai said the u.s. special forces have two weeks to leave the wardak province. karzai says he is ordering the u.s. troops out because of allegations of quote, harassing, annoying, torturing and murdering innocent people there.
the force that kwoerdinates in afghanistan says this is an important issue. they intend to fully discuss with the afghan counter parts. that developing story in afghanistan. all of this coming as newly minted secretary of state john kerry has just landed in the uk on his maiden voyage in this post. kerry is heading to stops over the next 11 days. how much is he hoping to accomplish on his first trip? joining me former senate majority leader george mitchellal who served as u.s. special envoy to ireland under president clinton. let's start in afghanistan. word that president karzai is ordering special forces out of this key province. what do we make of this? is this something that should be
cause for concern or is this karzai bluster? >> it is a serious allegation obviously. i think the head of the international force has handled it properly by saying we take these allegations seriously and will investigate them. until then there is not much to be said about it because you have to get the facts. >> let's go to secretary kerry. when hillary clinton was appointed her first trip was to asia. what is the significance of john kerry going to europe and then to the middle east on his first trip? >> according to press reports and i think they are accurate secretary kerry is determined to make a real effort in the region to try to bring about peace between israelis and palestinians to get an agreement that i think would be very constructive not just for those parties but for the whole region and for the united states. so i applaud him for the efforts. >> lots of states men have tried to crack that nut to no avail.
is secretary kerry uniquely poised to be able to do something that somebody before him had not been able to do? >> he is extremely well qualified. he knows the area very well and knows all of the leaders there based on his prior role. he has the experience and the knowledge and the determination. ten presidents, 20 secretaries of states, many israeli prime ministers have made the effort but peace is so important and particularly there that it's good that he has that determination. it's going to happen sooner or laterer in my judgment. and i hope that it does happen in the next two years as he intends and proposes. >> on this particular trip secretary kerry has indicated that he would like to be able to make progress on syria, as well. how viable is that on a trip like this? >> well, secretary kerry knows syria extremely well.
he knows the leadership there and knows the parties. i think it is a very dangerous and volatile situation. it is very clear that the level of fighting is increasing, that the quality of armorments is increasing on both sides so the amount of death and destruction is growing. it is also clear that it is having a destabilizing effect on neighboring countries in the region. large report in lebanon and georgia and syria. i think it is good that he will take that up and make an effort. i think there may be opportunity for greater degree of american opportunity and influence than in the past. >> a strange of strategy perhaps in syria? >> i'm not sure if it is a change or pursuing with greater effect and greater intensity particularly in trying to bring you to a conclusion and trying to bring about a sense of unity among the opposition to the current government.
>> you were special envoy to the middle east. i want you to listen to what congressman ingle had to say about arming the rebels in syria this morning. take a listen. >> i will be introducing legislation to allow the president to arm the rebels. i think it is time to do that. i think the free syria army needs help. we know who they are. i think it is time that we make that move. >> he is talking about arming the rebels directly. there have been a number of reports that indicated we are doing that indirectly right now. is that an advisable course? >> as you pointed out the rebels are getting a lot of arms. there may well be american participation to some degree in that already. cutter and the saudi arabians are very active in their behalf. i think we have to be careful because if those american arms get into the hands of al qaeda
types in a possible civil war after the fall of assad a lot of americans will be critical of the president for making arms available to the people who will use them to try to kill americans. it is a delicate balance to be struck. we want to see that they are well armed but we want to limit the extent to which it is directly the united states. >> what would you expect would be john kerry's legacy as secretary of state? if you are a betting man what would you bet? >> he will do a very good job, that whether or not he can bring about an agreement fraumis not known. i applaud his determination, his effort and i hope for the sake of the people and the region of the united states it does happen. >> former senator, always good to see you. thank you for being here. do appreciate you.
as he delivers his final blessings, new complications clouding the pope's final days. first reports of a secret gay network inside the vatican and now issues surrounding two of the cardinals that are set to help pick a new pope next month. we will go live to rome. plus a rare appearance from fide fidel castro today, as well. we'll bring that to you. is -- alakazam! ♪ [ male announcer ] staples has always made getting office supplies easy. ♪ another laptop? don't ask. disappear! abracadabra! alakazam! [ male announcer ] and now we're making it easier to get everything for your business. and for my greatest trick! enough! [ male announcer ] because whatever you need, we'll have it or find it, and get it to you fast. staples. that was easy. it will if it's new outlast stay fabulous foundation. it's a primer, concealer and foundation in one
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talk to your doctor about all your symptoms. get the blood tests. change your number. turn it up. androgel 1.62%. devastating crash at daytona speedway yesterday. at least 30 nascar fans were hurt when a car went careening into the stands. today's big daytona 500 race is still on. janet is at the speedway with more. >> reporter: a lot of focus on safety today after the jaw dropping accident that happened here yesterday.
more than 30 people injured, two critically. among them a child. officials held a news conference and said the daytona speedway make improvements overnight. if fans were seated in the same seats but if they had concerns that the speedway would do their best to move them to other seats. by the way, as you can hear in the background we have a race here going on today. the daytona 500 a lot of excitement on another topic and that is danica patrick. she got the pole position. she is along side all the men. we have had other women in the race. this will be the test for a new generation. a lot of little girls here with danica patrick t shirts and memorabilia. we will be interested to see how
she does here in the daytona 500. >> last check danica patrick was in third place. a final blessing coming up. we'll take you live to rome where 10s of thousands filled st. peteers square. we will delve into the new controversy complicating the con clave. also which oscar is hillary clinton up for? you are watching msnbc, the place for politics. [ rosa ] i'm rosa and i quit smoking with chantix. when the doctor told me that i could smoke for the first week... i'm like...yeah, ok... little did i know that one week later i wasn't smoking. [ male announcer ] along with support, chantix is proven to help people quit smoking. it reduces the urge to smoke. some people had changes in behavior, thinking or mood, hostility, agitation, depressed mood and suicidal thoughts or actions while taking or after stopping chantix.
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it is the first time fidel castro has gone to that assembly since 2010. another twist in the oscar pistorius case. the olympic runner's brother is accused of murder. he is facing charges for a 2008 road accident that left a motorcyclist dead. police say oscar pistorius killed his girlfriend on valentine's day. it is a big night in hollywood. it is the 85th annual academy awards. seth macfarlane is hosting. it should be funny. about 100,000 packed st. pet peter's quer. pope benedict told the faithfuls he would not abandon the church.
i understand there seems to be a new complication involving one of the key cardinals playing a role in choosing a new pope. tell us about the new wrinkle, if you will. >> reporter: it looks like a day doesn't go by without a cardinal being implicated into a scandal of sexual nature. we heard of cardinal mahoney of los angeles and sean brady of ireland being implicated of cover ups. today was the day of cardinal keith o'brien from scotland who is the highest cleric in the catholic church of britain. he is being accused by a number of priests, three priests and a former cleric of inappropriate conduct or inappropriate behavior that is believed to be
of sexual nature about 30 years ago. the vatican hasn't reacted to those allegations that were made today. a source goes and says that the pope is being briefed about the new scandal this afternoon. in the meantime as it happened for cardinal mahoney and cardinal brady public opinions against these cardinals, all three including o'brien for voting in the conclave, the election of the new pope. they are saying because of the gray areas in the past they don't have the right to elect a new pope but they are all coming to rome as if nothing happens. we will have to see whether the pope does anything about it or does say anything about it. >> from rome for us tonight. thank you so much, sir. do appreciate you. looking for the best return on your college investment?
that's today's big idea. a new tool in development could make choosing a school a bit easier and cheaper, as well. this could be a game changer given the decade since 2000 tuition at public colleges has shot up about 42%. the idea comes straight from the white house. take a listen to president obama's pitch in the state of the union. >> my administration will release a new college score card. the parents and students can use to compare schools based on a simple criteria, where you can get the most bang for your educational buck. >> joining me president of my al mu mater. good to see you. the tool is still in the works but the "new york times" reports that quote it would probably require a change in federal law to put it into effect, the 2008 higher education opportunity act prohibits the government from keeping the kind of information
that would be needed, tracking millions of people's educational back grounds. if the law gets change skpd officials track and store that information how valuable of a tool could a score card be? >> well, look, i think president obama is exactly right that health of american democracy depends on bringing greater access to higher education. the cost of higher education is a major concern. so consumers which is to say perspective students and parents really deserve a better knowledge of what they are about to buy, upwards of $200,000 at many private universities today. providing some metrics, a score card in effect seems to me a very reasonable proposal. those metrics will have to be determined. some are easier to gather than others. the problem with self reported
metrics is, of course, you have to assure accuracy, as well. >> as a professor and college president you have been in the top levels of higher education for some decades now. in the simplest of terms to what can we attribute the true cost of rising tuition? >> it is not all water slides and climbing walls. it is a very expensive enterprise and one that we manage better than anyone in the world. that is u.s. higher education is still the envy of the world. the problem is, of course, that even those full fee paying students are paying only a fraction of the cost of higher education. it is a very expensive undertaking. we need financial aid. we certainly need to spend money wisely. we need to avoid any sort of arms race among friv aulities that provide modes of
entertainment as opposed to learning. all of that is under reasonable control. i think the great question is with regard to the some 4,000 institutions of higher learning which represent an immense variety of institutions in this country from the elite private institutions to the community colleges, the technical institutions and in all probability one size fits all metrics will not do. >> dr. benjamin donelap. good to see you. for all of the terriers out there, thank you so much for your years of service. >> thank you, kraig. i am returning to my natural habitat of the classroom. >> i did not know that. you broke news to some folks. the place for politics goes hollywood on you. we will tell you who may be
worthy of a political oscar this year. first, though -- flashback. we'll flashback to the special day the royal engagement 32 years ago today. you are watching msnbc. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms. but if you have arthritis, staying active can be difficult. prescription celebrex can help relieve arthritis pain so your body can stay in motion. because just one 200mg celebrex a day can provide 24 hour relief for many with arthritis pain and inflammation. plus, in clinical studies, celebrex is proven to improve daily physical function so moving is easier. celebrex can be taken with or without food. and it's not a narcotic. you and your doctor should balance the benefits
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it has 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day men's 50+. there we go. [ applause ] >> that was president obama just over four years ago signing the executive order to close the u.s. detention facility at guantanamo bay. today it remains open. it was also on this day in 1903 the united states signed an agreement acquiring the naval
station at guantanamo bay. at the time the government leased the site as a coaling station to resupply coal during the spanish american war. it was a different scene on this day in 1981 when the world learned about the engagement of britain's prince charles to the woman we would come to know simply as diana. here is part of how nbc nightly news reported the story. >> the british press winded has breathlessly named the shy lady diana the rose without thorn. today at buckingham palace the prince and the rose submitted for the engagement pictures. british television began a series of running specials on the momentous news. a miniature documentary showed diana's birth certificate and stated that she was the girl
next door having grown up next to the royal estate and having played on its grounds. britain was reminded that lady diana is the prince's 16th cousin once removed both descended from king henry vii and she is 19 and he 32. an old fashioned girl. >> the breathless nature of the coverage surrounding the royals continues today as the duchess of cambridge appeared in public this past week pregnant for the first time. the perfect excuse to hand out our political oscars. back with me now jonathan allen and bill schneider who dressed
for the occasion, resident fellow making jonathan look bad. >> that's not hard. >> we'll start with you. bill schneider your pick for best picture. what do you have? >> it was a terrible tragedy that ended in a touching love story. chris christie and barack obama in "a sandy love story." >> the biker chick, joe biden in the diner with a motorcycle babe. looking like she is on his lap. apparently not the case. >> what makes that picture, look at the guy to the vice president's left. look at the look that he is giving either the woman -- best actress? >> i say claire mccastle. she is a democrat but performed in the republican senate
primary. she rang an ad calling todd aiken who invented something called legitimate rape. she called him the most conservative and it worked. >> how about you, jonathan? best actress? >> i will bend the rules and go from january of this year, beyonce at the inaugural address with her lip sync. >> best actor, who do you have? >> carl rove's melt down on fox news on election night. that was a viewer performance. >> you have bill clinton for best actor. >> supporting actor. he was a supporter of barack obama with his wonderful speech that everyone applauded where he said what new ideas do we bring to washington, a one word answer, arithmetic. >> how about you, jonathan?
best actor? >> best actor is chris christie. i say it in the best sense of the word. his response to hurricane sandy, superstorm sandy, bipartisan embrace of president obama at a time when his people needed help even though there was pressure on him not to do that. >> supporting actor who do you have? >> scott bayo who endorsed mitt romney. it is always fun to talk about him. >> i love you women. >> we enjoy that. what about best original song? take a listen to your pick and explain it to us afterwards? ♪ oh beautiful for spacious
skies ♪ ♪ for amber waves of grain ♪ ♪ for purple mountains' majesty above the fruited plain ♪ ♪ america america ♪ ♪ god shed his grace on thee ♪ ♪ and crown thy good with brotherhood ♪ >> he has a decent singing voice. >> screen play here. who do you have? >> i have this from hillary. folks have written funny stuff, texts she might be sending to other people. i think that was the best original screen play of the year. >> how about you? >> best original screen play
goes to the "new york times" blogernate silver who provided the narrative of the election. if there was a big winner i think it was mr. silver. >> jonathan allen, bill schneider. i appreciate you playing along. bill schneider we appreciate the bow tie, good sir. let's switch gears here turning to politics down in south carolina. jamie harrison and kate will join me and talk about what you need to know about the politics of the palmetto estate. it should be fascinating. this is the place for politics. bjorn earns unlimited rewards for his small business. take these bags to room 12 please. [ garth ] bjorn's small business earns double miles on every purchase every day. produce delivery. [ bjorn ] just put it on my spark card. [ garth ] why settle for less? ahh, oh! [ garth ] great businesses deserve unlimited rewards. here's your wake up call. [ male announcer ] get the spark business card from capital one and earn unlimited rewards.
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staging quite the political comeback. he is the front runner in a special election for his old house seat. democrat elizabeth bush sister of comedian steven kolbert, one of the only two democrats vying for that open seat. joining me now in the war room, jamie harrison, vice chair of the south carolina democratic party and presumed next chairman. and katen dawson. good to see you guys sitting next to each other. that's nice. >> jamie and i are great friends. we just don't get along on policy. >> it works out for everyone. mark sanford became a bit of a punch line when he left office and his family for the secret south american girlfriends. how many south carolina voters still associate him with that
period? >> almost everymean, basically republicans are giving us a big gift here. it's reminding us of the two big letters, "i" and "c" which defines republican leadership, ineffective and at sometimes corrupt. we're happy to see marc sanford back. the republicans are using him as a punching bag right now, and if he's lucky enough to be the nominee, elizabeth will use him as a punching bag later on in may. >> his first campaign ad is pretty interesting. i'm sure you've seen it. i'm sure you want to play a snippet of it for the viewers. it's all about forgiveness. take a listen. >> i've experienced how none of us go through life without mistakes but in their wake we can learn a lot about grace, a god of second chances and be the better for it. in that light i humbly step forward and ask for your help in changing washington. >> how effective of an ad is that? >> if mark can keep the
narrative there on forgiveness and his record in congress and record as a governor with all due respect to jamie, he had a good conservative record, was a -- before the failures was a national figure, and one thing you never can count a guy like mark sanford out is electoral politics. he knows how to do it. he's professional and knows how to raise money, and right now he's in first place and will be the punching bag for 15 others. that doesn't mean he's going to win the runoff, but he's going to be in it, but what i can guarantee you whoever wins that primary will be the next congressman from south carolina. look at the district, where it is, it's charleston and dorchester county, berkeley county and buford, and we've never lost any of those three counties in modern history. >> jamie, what say you to that because it's no secret democrat have had a rough go at it in the palmetto state for some time. in fact, next to utah south carolina is the most republican state in the country. >> well, listen, craig, you know. there's going to be a sea change
in south carolina, and it's going to start and take place down in the low country in this congressional district. i mean, it's amazing to me that for a party that hates the federal government so much that you've got 16 people climbing all over each other to go to washington, and listen, we're going to send somebody up there who is going -- who is willing to compromise and willing to put south carolina first, and that's elizabeth colbert busch. >> let's talk about her. i'm glad you brought her up. of course, elizabeth colbert busch, famous brother who pronounces his name very differently, by the way. let's hear what he said rise entally about his sister. >> holy cow. my sister is running for congress. as a broadcast journalist i am obligated to main pure octoberivity. it doesn't matter that my sister is intelligent, hard working, compassionate and dedicated to the people of south carolina. >> jamie, what are people saying
about elizabeth colbert busch on the ground there? >> listen, she's new to politics, but, craig, she's a natural. people just really, really love her, and the energy that she's bringing out on the campaign trail is amazing, and she has a business background. for, you know, for years she's been doing business development, either in the maritime industry or for clemson university. we're very, very proud of her, and she will be the typical type of candidate that you'll see from the south carolina democratic party in the months to come. >> if it's -- if it's mark sanford versus elizabeth colbert busch down there, what kind of a race are we looking at in. >> it's going to be a special election. the democrats in modern history, contrary to jamie, have not won a special election of this magnitude that i can remember in modern history. they are associated with the liberal party, associated with the liberal president, associated with things and values that just don't match up, especially with the first district in south carolina, but it will be a race. it will be expensive.
no matter which one wins, whether it's mark sanford or not, i would tell you in that in district, very, very high hill to climb, even with stephen colbert and his sister and the money they will be able to raise from the liberal establishment all over the country, it will be tough. i don't see any success from the democrats yet. as the former chairman said, turning a super tanker around is pretty you have to, and in south carolina republicans and the responsible policies we've done, great governor, tim scott u.s. senator, lindsey graham u.s. senator, pretty tough ship to turn around for the democrats. >> i want to shift gears, not a lot of time, but i want to get your take on the sequester. front page of the paper of record there in the palmetto state, front page of the state newspaper, story of looming military cuts and a big pullout quote that says "it scares me to death." how hard will south carolina be hit if the sequester goes through, jamie? >> south carolina will be one of the hardest hit states in the
country. you know, 7.4% of our gdp is tied into the federal government, from if the contracting or federal spending, and so, again, i go back to -- for a state that's run by republicans that tend to hate the federal government, i tell you, the federal government sure is signing a lot of paychecks for a lot of good hard working folks here in south carolina, and so sequester would be devastating, for not only poor people but for the military. and so we -- we need to turn this around, and we need some people that we send to congress who will say yes to things instead of no all the time. >> i do want to pick up where jamie left off a little while ago. if -- if republicans in south carolina and they more so than a lot of their ilk throughout the rest of the country, if they believe in small government so much, why are there so many clamoring for that spot? >> well, you know, being a congressman is public service at its height, and to have 16 people wanting to be a
congressman is pretty impressive. certainly it was tim scott's old seat. mark sanford's old district is not exactly that district either. it's been redrawn and it's sort of a new district that tim scott just won. back to what jamie said. we don't have a money problem in washington. we have a spending problem in washington, and still would contend that sequester is on its way. we'll start tightening the belt of the federal government. it's gotten too big, too intrusive and -- >> is this a way to make it smaller? is 85 billion across the top indiscriminate, is that the way to shrink government? >> that's a good start, a really good start. and the deal was cut by the president and his men at first so we dealt with the taxes and now -- and now the chickens are coming home to roost. >> we'll have to leave it there. wish we had more time. thank you both. demonstrating how folks who don't necessarily have the same opinion can sit right next to each other and share some space
and some water and some good times. thank you so much, guys. >> thank you, craig. >> lawmakers heading back to capitol hill with five days before the automatic cuts known as the sequester. those cuts kick in. some believe it's the only way to get lawmakers to trim the deficit, like you just heard, but will it do more harm than good? we'll talk about that. also, she's out of the senate, but former texas senator kay bailey hutchison has plenty to say. this is msnbc, the place for politics. [ bop ] you can do that all you want, i don't like v8 juice. [ male announcer ] how about v8 v-fusion. a full serving of vegetables, a full serving of fruit. but what you taste is the fruit. so even you... could've had a v8.
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bailey hutchison. good sunday to you. i'm craig melvin. both sides say the sequester is a bad idea, but that's about all they really seem to agree on. we'll talk about that. plus a big week for voting rights in this country. should states with a history of discrimination still be subjected to more federal oversight than other states? that's the big question before the high court, and the stars are out tonight in hollywood, and several key political films. they are up for oscars. we'll sort through the potential winners in the hours leading up to the academy awards, but we start this hour with the top political headlines. afghanistan's president hamid karzai has ordered that american special forces in the key province be withdrawn within two weeks. the order comes after allegations of torture and murder of, quote, innocent persons. a statement by the joint command saying we take all allegations of misconduct seriously and go
to great lengths to determine the facts surrounding them. the "washington post" reports a bipartisan group of senators is close to a deal that would expand background checks to all private gun sales with limited exceptions. the plan is expected to earn gop support in the coming days, and secretary of state john kerry is off on his first trip as secretary of state. he landed in london had a short while ago about 7:30 local time there, we're told. he will visit ten countries in europe and the middle east. and with just five days now until the massive budget cuts known inside the beltway as the sequester could take effect, members of both parties are ratcheting up the rhetoric and pointing fingers. members of congress are slowly making their way back to d.c. from this country and governors across the country are already there from the national governorees association conference and with the sequester looming they are not happy. joining me now from the white house, nbc's peter alexander, our white house correspondent.
peter, how seriously is the president taking the gripes of the governors at this point? >> reporter: i think he takes it very seriously, craig, and i think the white house has made it clear saying this is on the backs of republicans right now to act. republicans say they have acted, and they are putting it back at the president saying he's the one who needs to lead right now, but with these governors in town, many of them coming here to the state dining room for dinner with the president tonight, and then they will hear from the president and vice president again tomorrow during those winter meetings of the national governors association, we are already hearing a lot of frustration from republican governors and some democrats as well. here's bobby jindal of louisiana this morning on "meet the press." >> but the president needs to step up to the plate and say to congress here's how can you cut 85 million. delate medicaid expansions and the health care exchanges so they can work with states on waivers and flexibility, can you save tense of billions of dollars there, and you're not even cutting a program that's
started yet. >> reporter: the sequester was put in place to be a hammer, not a policy. that was the words used today by bob mcdonnel, he, of course, the republican governor of the state of virginia, a state hard hit because there's so many installations of military and defense workers. the pentagon noted more than 700,000 civilian military workers, department of defense workers, will effectively lose 20% of their pay. they will have to work one less day a week if this goes in effect. as one observer put it, it's like a low speed car crash heading our way. >> peter alexander from 1600. peter, thank you, sir. wednesday morning the supreme court will hear arguments in a case called shelby county versus holder. it's a case that could determine the future of the landmark voting rights act of 1965. to find out what's at stake, we're going to go ahead and take a reality check on this sunday.
peter bacon an msnbc contributor and editor of the grio. let's start at the beginning, if you will, for folks not following the story perhaps. what's at stake here on wednesday? >> the key thing at stake here is this is a law -- this is 1965, that lays out basically for a lot of southern states, states that had a history of discrimination, they had -- the big portion is they have to usually pre-clear any law about voting with the department of justice, and the department has to approve it in order to allow it to stay on the books. if you're in a state like south carolina, you pass a voter i.d. law. that has to be approved by the justice department in general for it to stay on the books, and that's what's under dispute on wednesday. >> and we should note here all of the states in the south save alaska and one state out in the southwest. the law has been challenged before. what's different this time? >> what's different this time is there was a ruling in 2009 in
which chief justice roberts ruled this law could stay in place for now but sort of hinted in this ruling that in the future the court. particularly the conservatives feel like it's no longer fair for states in the south to have to abide by different rules than the rest of the country's state. arguing basically discrimination in the south is not what it used to be, of course, and not much different than the rest of the states, if it exists as all, is the conservative argument, and, therefore, it's not fair to have to pre-clear their laws in a way new jersey and new hampshire would not do. the critics, of course, say the south has a history of racial discrimination. a lot of states in the south have never had a statewide elected official who is african-american and this law needs to stay in place. talking about the voter i.d. laws being another challenge, et cetera, et cetera. >> if this is overturned, what's the practical impact? >> the practical impact means in 2012 in states like south carolina, the past voter i.d. laws, eric holder, a big critic of those laws as attorney general says we don't support those and basically stopped
voter i.d. laws in south carolina, in texas and other laws in florida. if this is gone, if you're a group who worries about voting rights, you have to instead -- instead it will happen in sort of a pre-clearance a state like texas can pass a law and you can take it to court and get it challenged and knocked down so states can pass it and then have you to fight it after it's passed. that's the real impact. >> really quickly before i get out of here. i want to talk about politics. you wrote about diversity and the republican party basically saying that tim scott, marco rubio and about 14 other folks are essentially running in a minority primary of sorts. explain. >> the idea here the republicans that i talk to privately will acknowledge it's really hard to imagine they are going to have a ticket again that has two white males the way paul ryan and mitt romney were. because of the republican struggle with hispanic voters and asian voters and african-american voters. if you look at the number of
governors and senators, usually a president or vice president, 12 people in that group who are not white males who are also republican so if you think about that, these 12 people, might add condi rice in there as well, one of those people is guaranteed to be on the ticket. if you're marco rubio, you're latino, from a swing state. you've got a great chance to be on the ticket. if i'm marco rubio, what do i do to make sure i'm on the ticket? rubio is almost on the ticket and has to get himself off the ticket because he's such a strong position right now. bobby jindal is in that group and kelly ayotte, people with a very strong chance, because of their qualifications. bobby jindal is very qualified and because they are diverse candidates in a non-diverse party. >> the thing with bobby jindal that's still very interesting to me, a lot of folks left him for dead after that awful response, you remember that a couple years ago. >> i wrote about it, yes. >> perry bacon from the grio, always good to see you, always good to hear from you. thank you, sir. >> back to the spending cuts and
called the skywestner five days, but both parties are really digging in their heels. it's hard to see either party bending at this point. joining me now from dallas, kay bailey hutchison, former texas senator who worked very closely with both democrats and republicans before leaving the senate earlier this year. good to see you this -- this sunday, senator hutchison. >> great to be here. the president's strategy, doing interviews and tweeting a lot and heading out on the road to urge citizens to pressure congress to stop the cuts. how effective is it to take his fight directly to the people? >> well, of course, the president is a good communicator and it has worked for him in the past so i'm sure that he is confident about that. i think though that you have to really look at the facts, and the facts are that the president got what he wanted, at least part of what he wanted at the end of last year in tax
increases which republicans did not want to give. they did though. but in return for that, republicans said right off that the next round would be spending cuts. we've got to have some spending cuts in order to really make a dent in this deficit and get our fiscal house in order. so i'm hoping that the president will see this in a different way and maybe start talking to members of congress instead of going out and campaigning. >> senator, you mentioned the cuts, the spending cuts that are essential here. one of the ironic things that strikes me about all of this is two of the main drivers of the debt and deficit in this country are going to be largely untouched by the sequester. i'm speaking specifically of social security and medicare to a certain extent is also going to be largely untouched, as it medicaid for the most part. how ironic is that? >> well, it is ironic, you're absolutely right, because if you are going to significantly get
our fiscal house in order, everyone knows you've got to deal with those entitlements, and i think that's where we could really make progress if the president and congress would come together. the president mentioned early on, maybe raising very gradually the medicare age and certainly the cpi in social security. both of those things would be supported by republicans, but it seems like when republicans said, okay, let's -- let's go to the table on that, that maybe the president started backing off. so i think entitlement reform is what republicans are looking at because those are cuts that we know would take effect over a very gradual period and would have a big dent in the deficits for the long term which is what we know we've got to address. >> let's switch gears to another hot topic, gun rights specifically. you, of course, a longtime
supporter of gun rights. you got a grade "a" while in office. i want you to take a listen to something that wayne lapierre said last night in salt lake city. take a listen. >> but i've been amazed, just amazed at how rapidly this debate deteriorated from what has proven to work to what has proven to be the political agenda of those bent on attacking the second amendment to our constitution. dianne feinstein herself commented she's had the gun ban legislation in her desk for over a year waiting for the right time to introduce it. really? >> do gun rights activists like yourself still take that guy seriously? >> well, i think that gun rights, people take the second amendment seriously. >> that wasn't the question seriously. do you still take wayne lapierre
seriously? is he still an effective spokesman pore gun rights activists like yourself? >> i think that's a question that's really beside the point. the question should be, in my opinion, what can be done that realistically would make a difference in not having these horrible situations like we saw with those children being murdered, and i think it's -- it's three prongs. it is certainly more capability to know who is buying these guns and getting background checks which i'm told a bipartisan group of senators is working on a solution on that, that might carry both houses which i think is promising. >> here's the thing, senator, not to interrupt you. but here's a guy who speaks for the national rifle association, the largest gun rights group in this country. he has a platform. i think my question is valid because he should be at least advancing the debate.
advancing the die loss, but it seems like every time he gets behind the microphone he does the exact opposite. >> well, i think, of course, this has been politicized, but i do think that addressing the situation with people who are mentally unstable getting guns is a realistic approach, i really do. i think background checks should be in place, and i think that tom coburn and joe mansion are working on something along that lines, along with chuck schumer, and i think that also should be coupled, however, craig, with something in the area of mental illness and these incredibly violent video games as well as movies and the ratings system, so i think it should be a comprehensive approach that would try to address the issue of just the aurora, colorado situation, as well as the sad
situation in connecticut. >> we should note of the 14 mass shootings that have happened in this country since 2000, all of them involved high capacity magazines, and you didn't mention high capacity magazines at all right there. >> i think that's legitimate. your point is legitimate on that. i do think questioning how big the magazine, how long the magazine should be, is an area for discussion of reasonable people and hunters. i think that the people i talk to say, you know, maybe -- maybe we ought to be looking at what is a reasonable number to keep the second amendment rights but not just allow that terrible massacre that we have seen. >> former texas senator kay bailey hutchison, always good to see you. thank you. >> thank you, craig. >> up next, sending service members into classrooms. it's not about locking down schools in rough neighborhoods but about new jobs for vets and helping kids in the process. also, a little bit later, even the white house, the oscars
are on the brain. we'll tell you which cabinet members are saying who is going to win tonight's golden statues. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics and oscar picks on this sunday as well. ♪ just one bite opens a world of delight... ♪ a flavor paradise of delicious fishes ♪ ♪ friskies seafood sensations. ♪ ♪ feed the senses. who emailed it to emily, who sent it to cindy, who wondered why her soup wasn't quite the same. the recipe's not the recipe... ohhh. [ female announcer ] ...without swanson. the broth cooks trust most when making soup. mmmm! [ female announcer ] the secret is swanson. how did i know? well, i didn't really. see, i figured low testosterone would decrease my sex drive... but when i started losing energy and became moody... that's when i had an honest conversation with my doctor.
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right now a story about a win-win program for veterans and schools. troops to teachers is a department of defense program that helps qualified service members start a new career as teachers in public schools. and for one middle school in philadelphia where the school was very much like a battlefield, it's made a huge difference. in east philly john paul jones middle school had a reputation.
>> police used to come to this school. used to be on lockdown. >> fight like these captured from a cell phone from the nearby middle school were common here, too. mold, fleas and rats ravaged the library so badly school officials had to throw away thousands of books. >> when i first came, i was pretty nervous. i thought it was going to be a little scary. >> the nickname came before the bars on the windows and doors. jones jail. >> but last september eighth grader tre'von williams says something happened. >> this became a whole new school. >> school district officials turned it into a charter school, gave it a new name and facelift and then called in the military. >> we needed to have people who are good role models, who believe in education and believe in youth development, and people that had a commitment really to america, and who else but veterans? >> i enlisted when i was 17. my parents signed for me.
>> patrick's father is a vietnam vet and a purple heart recipient. his older brother is a marine. since service was in his blood he joined the army reserves 12 years ago, but when he finished a tour in kuwait in 2011 and couldn't find a job, he turned to another passion. >> i used to be very good with my younger nephews and my cousins, so my parents just said you should be a teacher. >> a defense department program called troops to teachers helped the sergeant go from running a military supply office to teaching fifth grade math and science. >> okay, class, eyes on me real quick. >> through the program service members get help finding teaching certification programs, money to pay for the classes and then more support to land a job. all of that help gets the sergeant in the classroom, but his military training made sure he was ready. >> the military puts you in stressful situations and ask you to be a leader during the
stressful situations so when you're placed in a classroom there's not many more situations that can be more stressful. >> when students get out of hand, he calls in reinforcements. >> i just calmly step back and let them calm down, and i call one of our engagement coaches. >> angie was a police officer in the reserves for 12 years and that prepared her for students most days. >> there's been a time when i stood on a cafeteria table and had to settle everybody down so i'm not going to say it's all sunshine and roses. >> she's here for a new program for service members. it's called project at ease, the three engagement coaches are part security guards and part mentors. >> wildcats. >> i talk to them. i've got to be their older brother. >> we have students that need a lot of attention, a lot of support, but they have come such
a long way. >> service men and women, some of whom left the battlefield, now fighting to turn around a school and give students a chance at success. >> i want to be the president of the united states or a s.w.a.t. team member. i want to go to college. >> and he l.the majority of the students at the academy were three to four years behind academically, so there's still a lot of work to be done, but thanks to the veterans program organizers tell us the students have more confidence now, and they are fully expecting large gains in achievement. it's sunday, and for some that means the last time they will hear pope benedict give his blessing from the ball cony in st. peters. we'll go live to roam rome straight ahead. can i get the smith contract, please? thank you. that's three new paper shredders. [ boris ] put 'em on my spark card. [ garth ] boris' small business earns 2% cash back on every purchase every day. great businesses deserve unlimited rewards. read back the chicken's testimony, please. "buk, buk, bukka!"
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with simple, real ingredients, like roasted peanuts, creamy peanut butter, and a rich dark-chocolate flavor, plus 10 grams of protein, so it's energy straight from nature to you. nature valley protein bars. i say go watch the "lincoln" movie. >> i did. >> i predict it's going to be the best picture tonight. >> that's transportation secretary ray lahood on nbc's "meet the press" predicting a win for the movie "lincoln"
tonight at the academy awards, and before heading off on a multi-nation tour secretary of state john kerry wished ben affleck the best of luck at the assors tonight for his film "argo." both john kerry and ben affleck are, of course, from massachusetts. to the political playground we go. turns out sequester is terrible for news rearedship and internet traffic. we knew this. a recent pew research poll found that just 27% of you have heard, quote, a lot about the sequester taking effect later this week. 43% know a little about it, and 29% say they know nothing at all. so why are we even talking about? well, because it's important, that's why. we're going to keep talking about t.comedian stephen colbert spent the weekend in south carolina fund-raising for his big sister's congressional campaign. elizabeth colbert busch is running for the recently vacated house seat in the palmetto state. still to come here, will they or won't they? on the eve of the event known as the sequester, what might it
look like if congress just doesn't do anything? first though, we'll take you live to the red carpet for the run up to tonight's academy awards because this year even this night is political. you are watching msnbc, the place for politics and lots of oscar glam as well. mallon brothers magic? f. ♪ another laptop? don't ask. disappear! abracadabra! alakazam! [ male announcer ] and now we're making it easier to get everything for your business. and for my greatest trick! enough! [ male announcer ] because whatever you need, we'll have it or find it, and get it to you fast. staples. that was easy. [ male announcer ] whether it's mom's smartphone... dad's tablet... lauren's smartphone...
my individual health profile. not random statistics. they even reward me for addressing my health risks. so i'm doing fine... but she's still going to give me a heart attack. we're more than 78,000 people looking out for more than 70 million americans. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. . >> and contact. >> after that devastating crash at the daytona international speedway saturday which left about 30 spectators hurt, nascar's premiere race continues this afternoon. with just eight laps to go, lots of folks are keeping a close eye on danica patrick. the 30-year-old has been holding her own in the race today. right now she is in sixth place. if she wins, danica patrick becomes the first woman in history to ever win the daytona 500, the first woman in history to also win a nascar race
period. again, all eyes on danica patrick with just a few laps to go. we'll keep you updated on that. a look at other top stories making news. new photos of fidel castro, the frail 86-year-old making a rare appearance with his brother raul. caption on camera there. they went to a meeting of cuba's national assembly. it's the first time fidel castro has gone to the assembly since 2010. the latest in the oscar pistorius case. now turns out the olympic runner's older brother is also accused of killing a woman. a lawyer for the pistorius family says oscar's brother carl is facing charges for a 2008 road accident that left a motorcyclist dead. oscar pistorius is accused of killing his girlfriend on valentine's day. roughly 100,000 people attended pope benedict's very last sunday blessing this morning where he once again talked about his reasons for retiring. all of this as cardinals from
around the globe are on their way right now to rome to take part in the conclave to pick a new pope. nbc's claudio lovongo is in rome as well. claudio, seem to be more issues on the way to the conclave this morning. tell us about those. >> reporter: the allegations brought forward by a number of priests and they say they accuse scottish cardinal keith o'brien of improper behavior towards them, believed, of course, to be of sexual nature. about 30 years ago when he was supervising these priests when they were still seminaries or young priests. o'brien is only the last of a number of cardinals who have been implicated in the last few days of scandals of some sort of sexual nature. well, we know all about cardinal mahoney of los angeles and the cardinal of ireland accused of covering up sex scandals themselves. well, this is -- it has ignited
public sentiment against the cardinals because they are making their way towards rome and they will be part of the conclave, the election of the next pope, and there is a rising sentiment that these -- that these cardinals in particular, those who are implicated in the sex scandal should involve for the next pope. well, the vatican hasn't reacted yet. they may issue a statement in the next few days but, of course, that is a decision for the pope to make, but certainly this latest controversy surrounding cardinals and who the public don't want to vote in the conclave is only the latest in a string of scandals that in the last years have rocked the catholic church so much that some believe that those were the real reasons behind the abdication of pope benedict xvi. craig. >> from rome for us this sunday night there, thank you, claudio. the red carpet has been rolled out in hollywood for the biggest night of the year. in just a few hours the 85th
academy awards ceremony will start. nbc's stephanie stanton is holding our spot there on the red carpet. good to see you, stephanie. >> reporter: hi, craig, great to be with you. >> three of the non-best picture nominees are politically themed. let's take a look, "argo," of course, "lincoln" and "zero dark thirty." which of those films is favored to win? >> reporter: well, i guess it depends who you ask. if you are asking me i'm going to go with "argo." when i first saw "argo," the minute i walked out of that theater i said this film has got it for best picture. i mean, ben affleck, of course, directed the film and "argo" has won a slew of awards up to this point, and now it's, you know, we'll see if in fact it does take home the oscar for best picture. this also coming, of course, with the so-called snub of ben affleck. ben affleck was not nominated in the best director category so
we'll see if "argo" takes it. several films this year dealing with political issues, the they havy issues. >> set the scene. folks have gathered there, and i see lots of beautiful dresses and lots of photographers. what else is happening there? >> all right. well, let's take a look around and i'll pan around. this is the red carpet right now. it's pretty casual and relaxes. this is mostly members of the media. you're also looking at some grand stands that have been set up here outside the theater. this is kind of the gallie. these are some folks who have been selected to sit here. they are the lucky people that get to watch as all the stars come by and walk the red carpet. the show, again, is a few hours away so we aren't expecting any celebs just yet. they will get here as we get closer to the event itself. you might want to bet that the a-listers may not get here until minutes before. they are always rushing in at the last minute. >> who are you wearing? >> reporter: who am i wearing,
i'm actually wearing a dress by cache. >> very nice. >> reporter: it's a little navy sequinned number. a big thanks to them as well. >> i hope -- i hope they let you keep the dress now. stephanie stanton, thank so much from the red carpet in hollywood. >> for more on the big night, let's bring in the brain trust, goldie taylor, msnbc contributor and editing manager of the goldie taylor project, bob franken and boris epstein, republican strategist who worked on john mccain's presidential campaign. good to see all of you. >> hello. >> how are you, craig? >> goldie, we'll start with you. ladies first. nate silva, of course, of the "new york times," he is picking "argo" writing in "the times" and "zero dark thirty" may have won slightly more critical acclaim but the critics do not vote for the oscars and the insiders have, and there's been absolute consensus among insiders. it would an enormous upset if it were to lose.
i know you're not an insider, but if you had to pick which politically themed movie out of these three, "lincoln," "argo" and "zero dark thirty," which of these three do you pick? >> i almost always go with nate silva. difficult to go against 538 in any situation but this time i go with "lincoln." >> really, daniel day-lewis did a masterful job. >> how about you, boris? what do you think? >> i've been getting crushed by nate for a long time dating back to the election. also republicans have been having a tough time going against him, but i'll continue the trend, and i will say i'm hoping for "zero dark thirty," because i think the backlash it has received from the left is completely unwarranted and wrong so i would like for "zero dark thirty" to win, but i actually think lincoln is going to win so goldie and i agree for the first time in a very long time. >> we agree on something else. >> what else? >> it's one of those days. >> let me bring in here in the past several months. film-makers and stars. they made the trek to d.c.
stars like bradley cooper and david o. russell from the movie esploofnlgt they met with vice president joe biden to talk about mental health. there's a picture from that meeting and also daniel day-lewis. mentioned the actor that portrays lincoln. got a look at the white house and how important are these for these movie folks? >> there's a reason we call washington hollywood east and it's really become difficult to tell and with all the intrigue and all the backstanding this year, we might start referring to hollywood as hollywood west, but the truth of the matter is, the political commentary has become a staple of movies and part of the pr campaign is to enlist people who do their own pr campaigns in washington. >> one of the things about this year's slate of movies and "silver linings playbook" to a certain extent as well.
all of those movies really brought to the forefront some sort of issue. these were movies that got folks talking about things, and perhaps we needed to be talking about for some time in this country. goldie, of the three movies, which do you think probably ignited the most discussion? >> it was absolutely "zero dark thirty" without a doubt. >> yeah. >> i think the conversation around, you know, torture, enhanced interrogation techniques, all those kinds of things. that really ignited a conversation between the left and right and even within the left that i had not seen before. i mean, outside of maybe to "django." >> when we come back we'll talk about the vast left wing conspiracy about "zero dark thirty." don't let the facts get in the way of a good story.
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lots of attention on danica patrick. the nascar driver did not win the daytona 500 but did score the eighth spot. unofficially for now, patrick, becoming the highest finishing woman in the history of the daytona 500. jimmie johnson won the top spot at the daytona 500, nascar's super bowl, if you will. back to the oscars and chatting with our brain trust. want to bring in goldie taylor, bob franken and boris epstein. let's start with you, boris, you mentioned something before the break talking about "zero dark thirty," and you were explaining why you thought it should win or what you hoped it would accomplish if it won. >> i do hope that it wins, and here's why, because it's a great movie. it portrays an extremely most in very recent american history the killing of osama bin laden after years and years of hard work by our armed forces and security teams. it has gotten a lot of blow back
from the left from some of the torture scenes and showing, oh, my god, torture may have led to information where osama bin laden s.that is the most basic common sensical principle, at least to me, that interrogation techniques used by national security teams, by the cia and other intelligence groups caused for the killing of osama bin laden. i don't understand why the blow back, at all. >> bob, did you see "zero dark thirty"? >> i did, but i think we ought to correct the record a little bit. some of this blowback has come from senator john mccain. if i remember, correctly, didn't you work for senator mccain. >> but led by senator feinstein. >> centered around the left. >> seems to be -- >> i wouldn't call it bipartisan. while i did work for senator mccain doesn't mean that i support everything he says now in 2013. >> the point is maybe we didn't want to get you accused like maybe ben affleck was of not being entirely factual. >> bob is not the funniest
franken in d.c. that's al franken. >> that's what i always claimed. one became a snofrmt however, we should talk about the movie that wasn't nominated than was the video of mitt romney's 47% speech. >> you were determined to work that in? >> if i were al franken, i'd be scared for my job. >> i do want to talk about some of the facts in some of these movies, the political movies, "lincoln," "argo," sirte. my colleague in burbank filed a report last week, and i want to play a part of what he found. take a listen. >> reporter: in "argo" the story of six americans saved by a daring rescue during the iran hostage crisis, there's a tense airport chase scene at the end that never happened. "zero dark thirty," stunning procedure about the killing of osama bin laden began with a torture scene even the film-makers say they never confirmed produced useful clues. >> now, now, now.
>> reporter: and in steven spielberg's lincoln they got a key fact wrong. connecticut's two congressmen did not vote against the 13th amendment ending slavery. >> i live in connecticut. that's a big deal. how much creative license, that was my colleague, mike taibbi? how much creative license can a movie-maker take to make a historical film? >> none of these movies, none of them were billed as documentaries, none of them are true to form. this is something we call historic fiction, fiction based on actual historic events. "lincoln" was one of those things. how could you make a movie about lincoln and slavery without including frederick douglass? not sure how that happens. the information was taken and gotten out of, you know, torturous events to find out who the courier was, no one knows that for sure. in fact, what we're hearing is that is exactly the opposite of what happened, that the information was not gained through torture techniques.
you go into these movies and you understand it's fiction, meant to entertain us and inspire conversation but it's fiction. >> we haven't actually heard that was not gotten, that's a possible -- >> you're not going to let it go. >> our intelligence community deserves the respect that it's not been getting from the critics. >> and so does the president for leading this, but you haven't mentioned him today. >> having said that, if you look at "lincoln," it's not a documentary. hue look at the oliver stone movies, movies about jfk, not documentari documentaries, we do live in a world of fact check where everybody has the ability to go out there and see if something is wrong or right, but entertainment is what hollywood does, and that's what they should be judged on, not facts. >> go ahead, bob. in "argo," for instance, which has also been criticized, how less entertaining would it be if perhaps the heros of the move he been the real heros of the incident we're talking about and that's the canadians. what you had was the cia making sure that its story was told in
its way, and quite frankly i think that there can be a valid criticism that not enough attention was being paid to getting the facts straight. >> why do you think that wasn't the case, bob? do you think that we wouldn't sit through a movie about canadians? >> we could make a bunch of canadian jokes here. >> i will not. >> i would love, to by the way. >> nor would i, and i suspect that you would like to, but the simple fact is that we have a much larger market here than -- than canada does, and i think that it was a valid criticism that there was this kind of distortion that was going on. i think it's a valid criticism that what the mistakes that were made in the movie "lincoln." as far as the movie "zero dark thirty," i think that that is not as valid. i think it is an open question whether torture in fact contributed to tracking down osama bin laden. and when you had a senate committee basically demanding that the movie producers in
effect apologize for what they considered a misrepresentation, i think the movie producers would have been within their rights to have a very impolite response. >> ten seconds, talk about overreach of federal government, going and demanding an apology from a hollywood movie producer, what are you talking about now? >> talking about "lincoln,"? >> no, "zero dark thirty." >> as someone who lives in connecticut, i think they deserved an apology. >> craig, i have one question for you. i've been dying to ask this. who are you wearing? >> wow. >> we're going to take a quick break. when we come back, we'll get back to reality, or at least a version of it, the reality in washington. we're going to talk sequester one more time. you're watching msnbc, the police for politics. [ dad ] find it? ya. alright, another one just like that. right in the old bucket. good toss! see that's much better! that was good. you had your shoulder pointed, you kept your eyes on your target. let's do it again -- watch me.
>> congressman elliot engel there this morning on nbc. sounded like a great idea but will it happen? the brain trust is back. goldie taylor, bob franken and boris epstein. what's your headline for your publication on march 1st which is, of course, when the cuts are set to hit? >> "sky fall." i think we're going over the cliff. i think at the end of the day sequestration came up because, you know, they were holding us hostage called the debt ceiling 18 months ago. here we are in the present, not able to work out a deal between now and then and it seems like neither side seems to want to deal. >> boris, you're making faces and moving your hands. all we're talking is half a percent of gdp. it's not "sky fall." >> it's not the amount, the speed at which it's coming out of economy. >> it is. >> if you look -- if you look at the history of this country from '92 to 2000" under president
clinton and the largely republican congress, the federal outlay against gdp went down by 4%. we're talking about half a percent here. this is not a big deal, a. b, goldy is very wrong. president obama and the white house were the ones that proposed the sequester in 2011. >> and 174 republicans voted for it. >> why does that matter? why does that matter? >> it does not matter. i'm responding to what goldie said. >> what's your headline? >> my line is "bust." >> this is a punt and it's a complete busted news because in reality they will sit down and punt this thing down the road like they have done so many times. we're talking about an issue that came up almost two years ago now. my headline is "punt." >> as i do frequently on the broadcast i turn to you for some sanity, sir, save us. >> well, that's pretty scary. the point that has been missed is that it's not just the amount of these cuts it's the fact that they are indiscriminant. they are going to go like a
sledgehammer across the various agencies taking with them some programs that i think everybody would agree are necessary, certainly in defense. you've got all these people saying that as well as the domestic programs, and as far as this coming from the white house originally, i think this was the result of people deciding this would be so crazy that nobody would allow this to stand which, of course, reckoned without some of the zealots who are out there who wering in fact to bring the sledgehammer. even if they have a settlement, it will be temporary and my headline is "sequester festers." >> thanks to the brain trust and thanks to you at home as well. saturday, 2:00 eastern time, sunday 3:00 eastern time for the latest political news, analysis, and we'll have some fun, too. until then keep it here throughout night for news updates and have yourself a fantastic sunday evening.