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tv   Melissa Harris- Perry  MSNBC  May 18, 2013 7:00am-9:01am PDT

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i trade like me. that's why i'm with scottrade. announcer: scottrade- proud to be ranked "best overall client experience." this morning, my question. how do you feel about having the government read all of your e-mails? and this week brought more news of sexual assault in the military. plus 19 people were shot just blocks from my home. but first, this week there was only one word on everyone's lips. scandal. good morning. i'm melissa harris-perry. on thursday evening we found out some shocking new information about the political drama we've all been following.
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someone in the administration who was in charge of enforcing the law is now breaking the law. a government agent discovered evidence of voting fraud in the past presidential election and buried the story. and a president we were all led to believe embodied hope, change, and maybe racial progress seems to be doing no actual governing, and now we have to wait all the way until september to find out what happens because, of course, the season finale of abc's drama scandal. not what's going on in washington. that's not to say washington hasn't seen its share of scandal. a president's election campaign whose donations had spying. an armed hostage situation. and a u.s. president who couldn't keep his pants zipped.
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now those are scandals. but what we're giving wall to wall coverage now, those stories that keep coming up in every press conference and committee hearing. you know them, ben gauz, the ip phone records. those are all political issues. are they because they are real bona fide scandals? no. you know how i know that? you have to look back at the most important republican sound bite of the past five years. >> our top political priority should be to deny president obama a second term. >> that was senate minority leader mitch mcconnell in 2010 right after the mid text elections. when it came to 2012 president barack obama won a second term. imagine you lost, failed on your
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top priority as a party. what's next? you stop him. throw everything at him. you tie up his judicial and cabinet nominations. you vote against his landmark health care legislation. not once, not twice, but 38 times. even after it's been passed, implemented and upheld by the supreme court. you make sure all roads to washington lead to president obama. the biggest revelation that the irs gave scrutiny. whose nads include tea party, 912 and patriot. yesterday the house ways and means committee held a hearing about the issue. dave camp had this to say to open the discussion. >> it seems like the american truth is hidden from people just long enough to make it through an election. the american people have the right to a truth tochlt a government that delivers the facts, good or bad, no matter
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what. president obama promised to be different and to deliver a presidential government. he was right. america deserves better. >> chairman camp was clear on how to characterize the irs mistake of a reflection of the fitness of our president. that hearing quickly turned to someone trying to score political points. this keeps happening in the congress. the rabinging member predicted this outcome in his opening statement. >> if this hearing becomes essentially a boot strap to continue the campaign of 2012 and to prepare for 2014, we will be making a very serious mistake. >> and it is a mistake. but a very, very calculated one.
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this isn't about providing criticism of president obama's record as president. it's about following mitch mcconnell's mandate from the republican party. the politics are personal and it's our president in the cross hairs. here with me is ro reyes, attorney and political consultant. nancy giles, comedian, because you need a little laughter in this week. now president of the media consulting firm and joe watkins, former aid to president bush and now an analyst for msnbc. it's lovely to have you all here. >> thank you for having us. >> are these scandals?
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>> in my judgment a scandal is when there's mall -- at the top. we have nothing linked back to the president. we have mid level bureaucrats and other agencies who are not in the white house. this has been a heck of the week. i don't think a white house has had three cry ceaises hit. >> i heard you have a great nerd one. >> since star trek is opening. into darkness. a good theme for the week. what we're dealing with is like star trek chess. three layered chess. every move has repercussions. so we have a three of pronged crisis that we're dealing with. the best crisis management people on the planet haven't dealt with three crises at once. at best, one, one and a half. another challenge is often when things are clear and easy and obvious then it's straight forward what you need to do.
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in a crisis like this there's oo battle between again it right and get it done fast. when it's with an agency not in the white house, the white house struggled to get the facts in front of them so they can move fast. it's taken them a few days to get their sea legs. >> it feels to me that there's two different layers on the political crisis piece. i want to come to you on this. on one chance you have the three dimensional tar trek chess occurring and the white house trying to respond on levels and you also have the gop needing to make decisions an how far they're going to push this. i want to read you the heritage action letter that went to john boehner and eric cantor. the letter is saying you have to stay on the scandal. it would be improvement to shift the focus from the obama administration. stay on the scandals. don't talk about real governing. suspect that going to be a scandal on the right? the idea of stay on the
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scandals? don't talk about real politics. >> probably not. because we have a winner take all form of politics where the president win and doesn't have to split things with the other side the political party will take advantage of weakness or anything else that looks bad. the realty is, we don't have a lot to really hurt the president. talking about the irs scandal, i think he handled it the right way. he thought it was absolutely wrong. he acted quickly. he got rid of the people at the top. your point is correct also. i know there are a lot o of people in an administration. presidents always don't know what everybody in every sergeant is doing. it's not a direct reflection on the president when somebody in
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an agency somewhere does something wrong. >> i'm going to push on this. because i'm wondering and particularly talk to me as an attorney. what has happened around the # 501 c4s and the irs question? it seems bad. but it's not clear to me that even it is scandalous. as far as we can tell, you're talking about an explosion of 51 c4 applications from 2010 to 2012. but 50 c4 denials go from three in 2010 to 8 in 2012. i'm sorry. how is this a scandal? >> right. as we know, these are supposed to be for social welfare anyway, which, you know, the great majority of these very prominent ones are not. congress could fix that by insisting they enforest the law.
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people in the public, all they see is the headlines. the irs is going after just conservative groups. and that's the only takeaway. and to your point about the irs scandal. i think that will drag on. because it's so easy to understand. nobody likes the irs. >> there's a bipartisan hatred of the irs. >> and with benghazi. public policy polling showed this week. i never come to nerd land without a few numbers. they said 41% of republicans think that benghazi is the biggest scandal of all time. biggest history scandal. that's incredible. what they're doing is working. i don't agree, but it's working. >> i have to say, how could benghazi be the biggest scandal of all time? i think there are legislate questions to be asked about benghazi. but haven't we misunderstood this? an does it have anything to do with, i don't know, how thin
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this president is, for example? is there something about this president, like, maybe he's from chicago. what would it be about this president? >> i think it's his hair color. i think there's something about the hair color. >> now he's going gray. >> this does not reach a level of scandal at all. and the thing about benghazi is it was a bad situation. they were thoughts that it was maybe driven by the offensive video that we were talking about in the country at this time. so gee, the information given out changed as the information they received change. where is the scandal there? >> i want toe talk more about benghazi as soon as we come back. i want to ask how olivia pope's number one rule took hold of the obama administration later on this week. my mother made the best toffee in the world. it's delicious. so now we've turned her toffee into a business.
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regular viewers of the kerry washington drama scandal know that her character starts almost every new client meeting with some variation of this line. >> i want to hear everything that happened, all of it. every detail. and it needs to be the truth. that's what president obama provided when the white house released more than 100 pages of e-mail, detailing the process of multiple agencies writing and rewriting the attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. he told us everything. and after all the build up. what did we finally find out? well, there's no there there. the real surprise came when cbs news compared the content of the
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e-mails with the quote that republicans had been leaking to reporters. and found that those republicans had all different language to back up their accusations against the state department. raul, is it fair to criticize this white house, and maybe it is, that they just aren't transparent? that they're not good at giving up public information? >> when you set the bar be the most transparent agency in history, they set that standard. you have to live up to it. i looked at the e-mails. where is the smoking gun? what am i looking for here? it's hard to understand. when you look at a distance and realize these don't lead up to a scandal. it's the other way around. this is a scandal. it's like going backwards. >> it's an investigation.
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>> it ought not to be a scandal. people want to know what happened. you don't want your president to always be transparent. he was successful in getting osama bin laden and had he shared that information in advance of that or after the fact, it may not be in our best interest. we may put people in jeopardy who may get that done. same thing is true in benghazi. but there is a desire to know what happened. after all, three americans lost their lives. and i think this is important. >> the fact is we have four dead americans. was it because of a protest or because of guys out for a walk one night who decided to go kill some americans? what difference at this point does it make? it is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we
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can to prevent it from happening again. >> so the investigation part, yes, let's investigate this. that's different than claiming there's some smoking gun in the e-mails that's going to prove when you do group e-mails it's kind of a mess. >> yeah. >> the braual truth is that the republicans want to extend this as long as they can. they are plotting to keep this going another month. and between the three crises, scandals, to drag them out until after the president is out of office. i predict we'll still be hearing about this. it remay understand me of the famous yew swrn tube video where he's criticized for not showing up for practice. he's like, we're talking about practice? talking about talking points? >> right. we're talking about the talking points. we're not talking about the four dead americans. i made the claim that they're going after president obama because the top priority is to go after the president, not the
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sense of policy. is this about setting up the possibility of going after in 2016 hillary clinton? >> of course. it's hillary like a double bonus. you can work on obama and hillary. pat toommy says a roon the gun bill didn't pass is people didn't want anything to go through as being a perceived win for the president. forget about the country and the kids being safe. the way that this congress is relating these with all of these panels and investigations. it reminds me of when i was a bad temp. i needed to look busy. so i was picking up things. moving them around. all it is is a waste of time. it's not doing their job this is not your job. >> any time americans lose their lives, we want to know what
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happened. secretary made a great point in saying we need to figure out what went wrong and that's a valid point well taken point. politically these things happen. in the 1980s the iran controversy began to unfold. and george w. bush was supposedly looking like he would be labeled without this baggage. and a lot of people said this is really going to impact the presidential hopes for 19 l 8 because this is a terrible scandal. i think the same is true for hillary clinton it doesn't impact her greatly for a presidential run, if she chooses to run, that is. >> but there is something impacted potentially greatly. that's the 2014 election. the thing nancy is saying about what happens when we see the panels. there are real questions to be asked. but they're not being asked. it's a weird sort of, i really like the government.
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i'm really into politics. and i hate my government right now just watching those hearings. this makes people tune out, turn off and decide i'm not going to turn out to vote. if i don't turn out to vote, that helps you guys much more than democrats. >> and one of the points that hasn't come out. this is not a wasted time per se, but there was money needed to defense and protect these people from security. and congress didn't vote for it. >> and i think they need to be careful. the republicans, to them maybe right now it seems it's great. there's so much going on. all the horrible things with the administration. there's a real risk they could overplay their plans. hillary testifying about a scandal, that's a day at the office. it's not not a problem. look, move on.
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so they need to be careful. i sound like a republican strategist. when the obama administration is over what else is the republican party going to have? it's all focused on no obama. >> apparently they're going to have umbrella gate. the newest scandal is the president asked marines in dress uniforms to hold umbrellas for him and a visitor. so this is the idea because marines are not meant to have umbrellas, this does feel like overreach. olivia pope is off to parts unknown with her daddy. so who is going to fix this mess? the president seems to have settled on somebody, and that is next. spoiler alert. [ musick ] i knew there were a lot of tech jobs
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president obama sounded a little bit like olivia pope at the press kompx. >> we're going to get the thing fixed. and i think we're going to be able to fix it. if there's a problem in the government, then we fix it. that's my responsibility. >> so he's not dressed as snappily as olivia would be dressed. but he is doing his best olivia pope impression in saying he is the fixer. if you know anything from watching scandal, fixing and governing are two very different things. joining us from san francisco is a democratic consultant and crisis communications expert. during the clinton
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administration he served as a lawyer addressing scandals such as white water and the monica lewinsky affairs. >> when i was there they were not people as smart, smooth, and certainly as good looking as olivia pope. >> somehow i feel like olivia pope would really stand out in the reality of what is washington, d.c. how much of is the administration's fault, just in the sense of having lost control of the message and not being able to fix it right away? >> the panel was talking earlier. in my view this is much more of a political challenge as opposed to a crisis. this was not rise anywhere near to the level of prior challenges that we face in the clinton administration. that reagan faced in the second term. george wvp bush faced with the skoothder libby week. this is taking place during the scandal industrial process in
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washington, d.c. clearly the republicans are looking for every single reason to thwart the president's agenda. this potentially gives them some cover to do it and appear like they're doing it for legitimate reasons, which is why i think the president got to a good place by the end of the week. you want to make clear that you're trying to get to the truth. i they they eventually got there. so i think that potentially gives them the foundation to expose the republicans for what the republicans are trying to do, which is to use this as an excuse to not do anything. >> it seems to be that the administration has at least two options. one is you try to pivot buy saying let's get back to the
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substantive stuff. there's talk about the deficit and the republicans are saying the president's biggest problem is out of control spending. do you try to bring it back to issues like that or show them as the folk who is are scandalous? what is the best pivot to make? >> well, at some level you have to do both. at the end of the day the american people wan to see the president focused on the issues that matter to him. for him to talk about it, get out there and have the ability to do it, he did need separation. and he did do that by the end of the week. you also need to make clear there are not clean hands on the other side. flst a real agenda going on. at some level they are enormously helped by the fact that the republicans really
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overplayed their hand. it was parent by the end of the week. people are talking about this like there was no prior scandals. richard nixon was using the irs for his campaign. this is a situation where a couple of people in cincinnati were not doing their job. but republican employees are overseeing them and none of these are held up. >> and no one was harmed. if you are in the president's ear at this moment, what is the first thing you say to him? >> well, i think he's moving toward this isn't a mess i made but i'll handle it. so one of the best things that has happened is heads are starting to roll. two people at the irs.
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four people in the state department. that will show him he is bold, strong and in command. when you don't know the facts and can't move as fast as he would like to he didn't look as strong. >> thank you for joining us and reminding us what a real irs scandal looks like, so thanks to chris out in san francisco. we are going to come back. there was something substantive happening in washington, d.c. this week. it turns out republicans and democrats can govern together if it's in their interest, when we come back. [ female announcer ] switch to swiffer 360 duster extender, and you'll dump your old duster. swiffer 360 duster extender cleans high and low, with thick all around fibers that attract and lock up to two times more dust than a feather duster. swiffer gives cleaning a whole new meaning.
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they announced they finally reached a broad agreement on comprehensive immigration reform. unlike on if television show scandal it does appear there's actual governing going on, and so maybe there is hope for more than just olivia pope. maybe immigration reform will survive this week's scandal madness. what do you think, raul? actual things happening. this is huge. they were so at odds just a few weeks ago. but this is a long term twoing story. it's not a headliner. if there's anything to the scandal that we're in the middle of it could be helpful for immigration reform. right now the lawmakers can denounce the president, denounce the administration, denounce the white house and that will give him political cover to come back
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and be on board for immigration reform. this idea that creating the drama allows something to happen undernooetd. this is one thing that people are getting work done. oi worked in the senate before i worked for the white house. so work does get done. i'm glad to report to the american people. >> we need more republicans like you to get work done. i think the president has an opportunity as well which is to say to the degree he stays above all this, he's not going to run for another term as president, all he has to consider is his legacy. he's going to have quite a strong legacy going forward. if he remains above the fray, doesn't let himself get pulled into the bickering, the republican-democrat bickering and helps bring them together,
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that's a great thing. 48 of them adopted. and some of these amendments, this one is great it says if you take people, spouses and children have to be together. but some of them are also more od. like the naturalized citizenscan also receive medicaid. why are we picking out some and not others? and also allowing guest worker visas for those with specialized language training. it's the netherlands, iceland, sweden, which is basically white immigrants. part of the reason it happened is because it's happeninging. what do those countries have in common? >> it's back to the president's
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hair color again. is that right sf. >> we have a lot of optimists at the table. i am skeptical that the tea party wing of the republican party is going to go for it. a lot of them control members and seats where you don't have a diverse population. and one of the big hangups is health care for illegal immigrants. it's tough to go from dem gauging an issue in cycle after cycle. to then embrace the bill. >> so i like the point that we can be optimistic or pessimistic after a long week of what made me feel pessimistic, is there optimism for where we are?
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>> i would like to think so. when it goes down why this is one issue that republicans can get behind, latinos are the fastest growing population in the country. and they're not going to win the election. they're not going to win elections if they don't support immigration reform. i will say i was optimistic because i loved how the president fixed, fixed, fixed. and his hair looked really good. >> he needs that big white hat. thank you. up next, an actual scandal. cutting food aid for the poor and hungry. my letter is next. flying is old hat for business travelers. the act of soaring across an ocean in a three-hundred-ton rocket doesn't raise as much as an eyebrow for these veterans of the sky.
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this week congress finally caught up to the can they kicked down the road, the farm bill. the september 30th deadline came and went with no farm bill after gop leadership refused to bring it to a vote in the house disagreement over the cuts to the program that account for 80% of the farm bill's cost. snap, formally known as food stamps. here we are again. congress has gotten around to reauthorizing the farm bill. both chambers have put snap on the chopping block. the senate agricultural committee is proposing a $4.1 billion cut. but the house version went five times further with a $25 billion reduction in the program that feeds america's hungry families.
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my letter is to the chairman frank lewis. it's me, melissa. i understand your job is a lot like hurting cats so job well done on bringing your republican colleagues to heel, by offering them that huge slice of snap reduction catnip. you all can rest well in the knowledge that if your bill passes, a deficit will no longer be burdened by the $20 billion of excessive spending and government inefficiency. except that it has a 90% efficiency rate. it does exactly what it was intended to do, put food on the table for those who need it the most. i know you're used to thinking about this in terms of line items on a budget. let's be clear about the people sitting around the table. more than 47 million individuals. almost half of those individuals are children. and your bill would mean nearly
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two million fewer seats at that table. fewer families like this philadelphia couple that relies on snap to feed their five children, including their youngest, twin daughters. imagine if you had to explain to your three children and grandchild that they had to go to bed hungry because the deficit in the national budget is more important than the food on the table. it's not like snap is a worthy sacrifice on the deficit reduction. your cuts will do little to solve the nation's long-term fiscal challenges. spending on the program is expected to decrease according to the congressional budget office's projections. the dramatic increase between '07 and 2011 st an indication that the program is responding to americans who were struggling to feed their families during the recession and slow recovery. more people are using snap because more people are facing
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povrsy and hunger. so how about you and clour yeegs focus on that. as the number of americans in need of help declines, so, too will the number in need of snap. snap has been one of the few reliable lifelines in our weak social safety net. it lifted 4.7 million families out of poverty in 2011. here's my proposal, congressman lucas. no member of the u.s. congress should be allowed to introduce a bill reducing snap benefits until you have personally taken the food stamp challenge. that means eating on a budget of about $1 per person, per meal. if you and all your colleaguescan do that for a full month and you still think we should cut snap, then feel free to introduce a reduction. until then, have a seat.
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sincerely, melissa. we went out and asked people a simple question: how old is the oldest person you've known? we gave people a sticker and had them show us. we learned a lot of us have known someone who's lived well into their 90s. and that's a great thing. but even though we're living longer, one thing that hasn't changed much is the official retirement age. ♪ the question is how do you make sure you have the money you need to enjoy all of these years. ♪
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last week we discussed the dramatic rise in sexual assaults in the air force. he was leading the efforts to prevent harassment when he was arrested and charged with sexual battery himself. then this week an unnamed army sergeant working in a sexual assault prevention office in ft. hood, it's, was accused of abusive sexual contact and other crimes, including having allegedly forced at least one soldier into prostitution. and on thursday a third case emerged of army lieutenant darrell haas who turned himself in on charges of stalking his ex-wife and violating the
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restraining order she had against him. he was the manager of the sexual harassment and assault prevention program at ft. campbell in kentucky. he was removed from his position, the army announced on thursday. we don't know what's going to happen in the cases. but we know the alleged crimes can be handled twn chain of command. and outside the view of civilian courts. kirsten gillibrand of new york is trying to change that. a move opposed by the pentagon and defense secretary chuck hagel. an army veteran himself. despite the assurance yesterday that they will do everything needed to fix the program. joining us is a retired marine captain. you helped to draft the very legislation introduced by the senator on thursday. we are back fwen. are you stunned by how rapidly
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this is happening? >> i'm relieved. so are thousands of veteran who is shared their stories with us. the difference is the media is covering what happened for dekids and decades. folks who call our office have not only just recently been abused, harassed, assaulted, raped, we're getting calls from women and men assaulted back in vietnam, as far back as world war ii. it's devastating. the difference now is so many women are serving in the last ten years of war. is the media has taken an interest in women serving and dying. the military requires extra oversight by the media and extra oversight by the government. that's why this is happening. >> and you make the point this is because of the changing roles of women within the military. i was profoundly moved by the story of navy petty officer brian lewis this week.
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i want to listen briefly to what he had to say. >> i am a rape survivor. a superior noncommission officer raped me while i was stationed aboard the u.s.s. frank gabel in guam. i was told not to file a formal report with the criminal investigative service. when i was reassigned to seek medical help, my psychiatrist told me that i was lying about my rape. and diagnosed me with a personality disorder. >> so this is undoubtedly also a men's issue. >> it's a military issue. we don't like to call it a women's issue because over half the survivors of military sexual violence are men. and it's devastating. there's so much stigma about being a man who is sexually assaulted. there's so much rape mythology about homophobia and we mix messages in the culture. it's devastating for men who
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need support and need to understand that they're not alone. brian is one of dozens of men who have come forward and become advocates on the issue. >> and just incredibly brave. you can see how raw the emotion still is. when you say it's a military problem, an important is chain of command issue. tell me what the new bill does to address that. >> it's many till tear justice improvement act. it would professionalize what is now an 18th century system. take it into the 20th century by making sure the experts are impartial attorneys and judges not commanding officers who don't have legal training or expertise and don't have the language or knowledge of sexual violence and rape culture and masculinity and violence. they really don't know how to begin to have these conversations. you hear about hookup cultures.
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the rational behind sexual violence. he actually meant well. >> i think he was saying it meaning try set it in a larger context and does the survivor blaming, victim blaming that is central to how we talk about rape. >> military leaders talk about alcohol awareness in the same breath as rape. it has no place. men and women being social, interacting, dating is very much separate from sexual violence and rape. >> yeah, it is okay, there may be reasons to not be drunk. it does not allow someone to rape you. when you look at what we hear from secretary hagel and all of this, how likely do you think that the new legislative effort will ben trait, will actually happen. is this the one moment of
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brakethrough? >> i think we reach the tipping point where we're working on getting more. we have a handful right now. it requires all of them to keep pushing the white house and keep pushing secretary hagel. the answers will not be found within the joint chiefs. those are also military leaders who have been engrained in a backwards culture. who have been engrained in these values. >> it makes a difference with don't ask, don't tell. when it was important to repeal don't ask, don't tell, the president made a very clear argument that it needed to go through the joint chiefs and the military. you're saying this is a different issue. >> absolutely. and we're not talking about an operational matter. we're not talking about drawing troops back. we're talking about criminal justice. why would they know anything? they're wrapped up in this ego that every single officer has
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been indoctrine nated. i'm responsible for everything in my unite. maybe. but you have no legal background to understand the ins and outs of military law. and certainly not sex crimes. which are very complex cases. thank you for being here again. i hope we begin to make progress on this. and coming up, is the government reading your e-mail? also, the epidemic of gun violence hit extremely close to home this week. we'll talk the the author on a shocking new report of gun control in louisiana. more nerd land at the top of the hour. i want to make things more secure. [ whirring ] [ dog barks ] i want to treat more dogs. ♪ our business needs more cases. [ male announcer ] where do you want to take your business? i need help selling art. [ male announcer ] from broadband to web hosting to mobile apps, small business solutions from at&t have the security you need to get you there.
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revealed they obtained two months of phone records from ap journalists. they were conducting an investigation to find the source of a leak for an a.p. story. the attorney general defended the actions on tuesday with this. >> this was a very serious, a very serious leak. and a very, very serious leak. i've been a prosecutor since 1976. this is among the top two or three most serious leaks that i have ever seen. it put american people at risk. >> the attorney general eric holder was not involved in the investigation. but he still testified before the white house committee. the same day they tried to stop
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the p.r. nightmare by asking new york governor schumer to repeal the media law, whether that law gets a vote this time around remains to be seen. the truth is the d.o.j. may have been well within their rights to obtain the a.p.'s phone records. this may be less about whether what the d.o.j. did was legal and more about the scope of what is, in fact, legal when it comes to obtaining information. at the table raul reyes. and cohost of the cycle is also an attorney. the industry and monopoly power in the guilted age. she also served as a special assistant to president obama and dan ackerman, senior editor. let's start with a legal
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question. is this retrievable fundamentally a legal scandal or fight? or is this about us being scandalized about the fact that the d.o.j. can come in and get the records and obtain them if they want them. >> actually, what they did was acceptable in terms of the subpoena power. internally they have guidelines about working with reporters. it's not clear if they dcomplie or not. now no notice to the targets. we know they are receiving millions of requests a year. it's all a secret. and this reveals it. >> is this new? for me as a student of american racial history the idea of the department of justice infiltrating organizations that it thinks of as problematic to
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the state. take the black panthers or using the tactics. so they were maybe lee tech but they were still about the d.o.j. obtaining information when it felt that the american state was threatened. is this the kind of new technological version of that or is this different? >> we have had decades of experience with the department of justice and the fbi snooping on any groups they felt may threaten the security of the united states. we had enormous scandals in the '70s. >> and we did it because of the patriot act. this is basically a response to the patriot act power. >> well, in part. but there's a long standing ability to subpoena and in some
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cases subpoena without the notice. why is that important? if you think of a traditional warrant or procedure office. the police come into melissa harris-perry's office. how do i know? let me call the lawyer. >> dang lawyers. >> you should meet them. they take your computer. they take your documents. thab they take your belongings. you know it. as uncon shen shl as it may feel, you have the notice and begin fighting it potentially immediately if you have lawyers. we don't have it here. 20 journalists have records for months. everyone coming out of their homes including the personal life and they didn't get the first chance to fight it. had they had the chance, they could go to court to narrow it. to say why 20 journalists if
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there's only three. so that comes in the point where is the guidelines intersect. traditionally there has to be good failt negotiation with the journalists before you secretly take their stuff. >> convince me i should care. i fly twice here every week. i fly up to new orleans and back here every week. and if you're asking me as an american citizen do i care more about ari's right to have a leaker call him as a journalist and give him information or a potential underwear bomber didn't end up on the plane. i'm going with underwear bomber not on the plane. >> that sounds good. but we're in the digital age. right now our government can go in, look at your e-mails, snoop around. and if it does not result in a criminal investigation, you don't have to be informed.
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and if you think about it in the physical terms, yes. if armed guards came in, went in and carried it out, that would be an outrage. because it's done electronically it doesn't register so much on people. but you have to remember the mainstream press. is weaker than ever. back in the '70s newspapers were stronger. you had investigative units that could fight back. so it's almost like kicking the press when they're down but to the press, we represent all citizens. you should care. >> and a short answer to your question is the pentagon papers. each of those are from leaks. >> this is the argument that the leaks themselves carry to us the values that we should care about? how do we balance that?
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yes, i need the first amendment. on the other hand, i am going to shrug my shoulders and say sometimes the people in the national security business may know better than i am what is and is not dangerous to the american people. >> we have to give up our information. it's not just electronic. we have justify set off the information. they go to verizon and comcast and these guys don't have the same priorities as we do. they're not going to fight a subpoena. as journalists we don't always know that. >> the assumption is the profit based motive they're collecting it to sell it to corporations.
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>> not even big brother. we have been giving this up for years. but we're very comfortable with that. when the government does it, that's when we notice it. once you change your status. all the facebook ads were about various things one would presumably need if one was going to get marry like flowers and dresses. and that's because that gave out to the commercial world all of this information. why are we more nervous when it's the government? >> well, here's where the subjects come together. the government uses the fact that we have to communicate through third parties to do everything in a digital age. because we hands it over to facebook or verizon wireless or
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sprint, this is all about balance. yes, they need information to keep us safe. does it feel creepy. there's no oversight and no chance to know what is going on. >> if you have voluntarily shared the information in the world. it's not that invasive? you give up the expectation of privacy. >> there's a difference between a facebook update to a bunch of people and an e-mail you send to your husband. that's the difference. >> let's hope so. although some people i swear they look like thought ought to be letters. when we come back, how the government may expand the right to know even more about you. thank you orville and wilbur... ...amelia... neil and buzz: for teaching us that you can't create the future... by clinging to the past. and with that: you're history.
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. giving law enforcement the tools they need to investigation suspicious activities is one thing, and it's the right thing. but doing it without oversight jep sizes the rights of all americans and the ideals that americans stand for. >> that was barack obama in 2005 talking about the patriot acts. they increased the surveillance powers in the fight to combat terrorism. the same terror act that president obama extended for an additional four years in 2011. and the obama administration may be on the verge of backing the next frontier of surveillance laws people not just on the phones, but also on the
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internet. this will require companies to comply with wiretapping orders. fines could start around 21,000 a day. so on the one hand, we elected to the presidency a constitutional scholar, and in the wake of 2001 and the patriot act, i think a lot of us felt excited about that. when we look at electronic surveillance on the rise, we see electronic surveillance sharply on the rise, just original orders for electronic surveillance. not just the orders but the number of people affected has dramatically increased since 2008. and also e-mail and internet authorizations, which were basically flat, almost at zero until 2008, and then as you can see exploding at the end there. why is that? >> you know, law enforcement claims that they're doing dark because they can't get access to enough information. actually, they're going bright.
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and the a.p. incident demonstrates that this request for increased surveillance authority has to be shelled. it has to be stopped. the fbi used "the new york times" to float their internal proposal. the white house has not approved this. and it's very important that people understand that fbi is calling for far broader authority than they had in the past. they didn't get access to contents. now they're going to get it by asking people building new forms of software to build new capacities. >> susan is hitting on an important point. the fbi can be a very strong political actor and bureaucratic player, as can the 17 surveillance institutions within our larger program. so we have a lot of groups that last longer than any single administration. that have a lot of relationships with both parties. and that is the shell of this that we don't see.
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partly because of something that you were talking about earlier, which is d.c.'s obama scandal obsession. the a.p. story doesn't involve the president doing anything, although he could take more actions to pass laws so it would be less likely to happen. the i.r.s. is one of 2.8 million federal employees doing something wrong and getting in trouble for it. these are not obama stories. these are about what happened when you have what the professor calls a national surveillance state. and an approach to everything that airs on the side of total information and not the other values. and so the fbi wants that online. although there would be warrants in the program. when you gather all this information you create a tremendous temptation for profiling and for doing shortcuts and not necessarily traditional law enforcement investigation but gathering up with the right mentality. >> but there's also something
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that is not addressed beyond the tech industry, which is against the proposal. it's very expensive for them to build the technology into the services going forward so the government can snoop on people. on one hand we can have the back door surveillance. or you can have the cyber security. you can't have both. once that means of access is there, it's a matter of time before north korea, who knows, most tech experts really agree that they just do not go together. cyber security will not work with these proposed developments. >> these are the same things that big companies like blackberry have been struggling with where the government wants
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access to all your blackberry messages. it's not just for political purposes. it's for economic purposes where you have industrial espionage. >> so should i be more afraid of the fbi's request or more worried about google glasses? you know, there's this part of me that thinks, hey, yeah, i don't want to put the key under the door for uncle sam to come in because the criminal will use it to break in. but i'm more worried my neighbor is taking pictures of me and i don't know it. >> for now they look so ridiculous. you can see them coming a block away. >> eventually they'll look like that. >> and the the fbi is asking to have everything updated so they have more power. we haven't updated the privacy law. we have a federal law that restricts you on one-way wiretapping of phones. we have that. does that apply to google glass. most people don't know. >> a lot of people don't communicate on phones the way they used to. all this digital communication
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that is not covered. we're way behind in updating all the privacy protections for our age. >> we have already signed away a lot of the rights on our commercial relationship. >> the risk of adopts this change far exceed the benefits. but what is great about this week is that we're finally focusing on this giant secret surveillance state, which gives incredible power to the government and no power to us. this asemitri is corrosive to our fabric. it may be the one thing about republicans' overreach on turning everything to a scan dpal. the right had not been against this kind of surveillance previously. because it fits within the big scandal narrative, suddenly we are willing to take a look. we are going to talk more about this as soon as we get back.
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i believe we owe it to the nation. we owe it to the future and our children to make sure that we craft the kind of legislation that would make us proud. not legislation that we settle for because we're in a rush. >> that is president obama speaking back when he was senator obama in 2005. that fine line between protecting the country and protecting our privacy. the patriot act, the president, then senator, was saying was passeded in a rush and increased the government surveillance arn record searches. trap and trace searches. all those things were handed over to the government. is there a way now to go back and legislate in a more careful
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way that pull this is back? >> absolutely. in the digital age we trust our most intimate communications. the companies that voluntarily send the stuff over the government. verizon wireless claimed it had a fundamental first-amendment right. the guys building the giant thing in utah to store every internet communication. we can say the ak stesz to use, retention, dissemination is subject to legal controls. we're good at this. otherwise we risk blackmail, discrimination, persuasion, all the tricks used by the government in the past. so is your point about a differing perspective in private industry. meaning my first amendment right means i don't have have to give you the information. >> is that the same as giving
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the government the same access that we give to google? i have signed on with google. i know i'm getting a very nice service. it's kind of creepy, but it's worth it for me to get the web mail. >> and we care a great deal in this country about what the police can use when they go about wielding the most extraordinary power they have. which is to arrest and detain and deny you liberty. you mentioned the civil rights movement. you don't have to explain why it matters what the people can use to figure out where the investigation starts. when they use skin color or stop and frisk in new york. and very wealthy african-american males, i should mention. you don't have to explain why we
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care a great kid about preventioning the police from certain things. good reason in our history. it can also be the same problematic profiling. whether it's only because you are a journalist and only because you e-mail about islam or your amazon file has books about anarchy or you read 1984 or whatever it is, we want to be very careful about that. we can't keep an eye on what they're using because it's without warrants and traditional checks. i'm sure most boston bombing. if you recently brought a pressure cooker to make rice. suddenly that becomes a relevant characteristic. >> i don't think people recognize in the age we live in how much of your personal information is out there and accessible. a snail mail letter. you have to get a warrant. maybe go before a judge.
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have good, probable cause. in the digital age, you can access all sorts of information without that. i still believe many people think that the e-mail is private. that text messages. everyone knows what stuff people are texting, that it's private. clearly people think that it is. especially elected officials who do things on a text and it's like, are you serious? what did you think? thank you to susan and dan ackerman. raul and ari are staying around. yeah, you guys get to stay. after the break i want to talk about something really important. last week in my hometown, in new orleans, 19 people were shot during a mother's day second line. it was just blocks for my house, and we're going to talk about the exclusive report on the fact that louisiana legislators are doing nothing about it. [ dad ] ah! lily... she pretty much lives in her favorite princess dress.
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>> 19 people, including two children, were shot last sunday during a mother's day second line parade in new orleans. brothers, 24-year-old sean scott and 19-year-old akein scott stand charged with 20 counts of attempted second-degree murder. thankfully all 19 people survived. but this story of senseless violence has quickly and quietly moved out of the news cycle. just like this story, the staffer for president obama organizing for action. he was shot in the leg during cross fire in washington, d.c. his task, community organizing for gun reform. why gun reform is stalled at the federal level, new york state led the way in january, enacting the new york state act. which allows police to track
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ammunition sales. colorado and connecticut home to the two high profile mass shootings in the last year quickly followed suit. they barn certain high capacity magazines. on thursday they signed that gun reform law, which included banning 45 types of assault weapons. states like second degree, arkansas, and kansas are working to make guns more omnipresent. they passed a law giving school employees the right to carry a gun, and kansas passed a likely unconstitutional measure to block enforcement of the guns in the state. which brings me back to my home state of louisiana. the shooting happened just blocks from my house in new orleans's seven ward. it added only to the disdishonor of louisiana holding the state
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with the worst rate in the nation. also disgraceful, the nonaction by legislators. 15 gun bills were introduced. 12 expand gun access or block federal efforts. and while children take bullets on the streets of new orleans, louisiana lawmakers are making sure guns are more available than ever. still wi joining us now is msnbc political analyst and former aide to george h.w. bush joe watkins and jermaine lee, who's exclusive new report of what's going on in louisiana is up on you have a quote in this piece that i want to turn into a billboard all over the state of louisiana that says between 2001 and 2010, 4,519 people were killed by guns here.
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what the hell is going on? >> when you look at these numbers and spend any time in new orleans on the ground, read the headlines and it's clear that there's a crisis going on in the communities. you have all the things that come with poverty. but you also have a state with a wide embrace of this fundamentali fundamentalism and we see it play out time and time again. i haven't been to a second line where there wasn't a shooting. it's as if we come to expect it. >> we were coming home on sunday. this used to be a standard part of our reality. a lot of times they come right past our house. it's part of what a second line is. we come out, hang out, follow a little bit. but the idea that we're in a
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situation where 19 people can be shot. it's just out of the news. is it because it's happening in communities where it's expected to happen? >> i think it is expected. the grandmother, the student, the athlete, that's the we? that juxtaposition of the element that they have to survive and go about their every day lives in this type of violence. you look at the poor communities and we saw in reporting after katrina, that they were trying to escape over the bridge to the west bank. >> so let me ask about this. joe, this feels like exactly the place where democrats and republicans or sometimes a more liberal conservative, we identify the same set of problems. we look at the seventh or ninth ward where there is violence. we say, okay, there is violence
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ear and this is wrong. but then we come to very different understanding about how to address it. so i'm on the position of let's get the guns off the street. but often i hear the problem is individual decision making. is this a place wre we can get some kind of work down? >> it great if it was i lead a school district in a neighborhood where there has been gun violence in the past. that would be wonderful if we could end it. how do we fix it? how do we make people safe? if you make it harder for people to own guns, to buy guns, if you make it hard for somebody a hunter in a rural part of a state to buy a gun, have you if i canned a problem in north philadelphia or new orleans?
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>> yeah, if you make it harder to get guns, yes. >> but the guns are illegal. if just the bad folks end up tw the guns. bad folks are going to buy guns one way or another. they're not going to register somewhere. they're going to buy the guns. if you're involved in the drug trade, you have money, you can buy guns. so what if a good guy had a gun? you had bullets already flying? so if he starts shooting, how does that make it better? that's a very good question. you want them to come together and say, how do we fix the problem? just like with the legislation that's been in the house and the senate, how do you cobble together, i'll use that word again today, legislation that works for everybody?
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your article doesn't show them working together. where in the louisiana state legislature the rule parts of the state, mostly represented by white democrats or white republicans make guns more available throughout the state while the legislative black caucus is like, please stop. >> not only are they loosening lax gun laws, they're introducing legislation to make it easier to get guns and carry in more places. as they are accessible legally, there's a pipeline into the communes most impacted by them. people are obviously selling the guns back. and i talked to folks on both sides of the aisle. they're saying, there's no way i can go back to my district and say this how can i tell these folks that we're trying to tigtden up gun restrictions? >> as soon as i get back, i'm
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we've been talking about guns in the wake of the shooting that happened in my hometown of new orleans. the headline about one of the shooting victims made it more personal. he is 10 years old. he lost both his father and his 5-year-old cousin to violence. but that is not all. last weekend was not the first time that young kenard was shot. a bullet hit him in the neck almost one year ago at his 10th birthday party. that was the party where his 5-year-old cousin was fatally shot. this is a story about a boy who lives in my city who with the simple act of attending a birthday party and a second line parade with his mom has already been shot twice before his 11th birthday. i don't know if all the rest of
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this stuff this week was a scandal. but this is a scandal. can we finally have enough outrage to do something about this? >> well, i thought your lead-in was really important. you showed several states that are doing something about this. colorado, new york. connecticut, but one of the things that happens in our media culture is we look at things like background checks and because of arcane rules didn't move on. from a majority we say, oh, we lost. we look at the terrible things, and they are terrible. but i think legislatively there's clearly a breakthrough. there's a reason the nra has been in the news more. they don't like to be in the news. they like to wield power quietly. when they passed the gun immunity act, there wasn't a lot
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of coverage about it. they just did it. they just wielded power. they are on the defensive. and there are states making progress. to me the fundamental question about the debate is not regional, although that matters. it depends on if you look at these from the perspective of the shooter or the victim. i went to an inner city high school. we had a shooting when i was a freshman. two kids shot. a lot of other people shot at. no one was murdered, but it was a hugely traumatic event. and even though it was a city a lot of people related to the idea of being shot at. and that's very different from living with a rural area and feel that the gun is about being the shooter. i think this is a bridgeable difference. it may not be on ar-15.
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if you own one and think you should, that's a black and white issue. but for a lot of the stuff for a lot of the country as we see more areas, then we get more break-throughs. when i put up his picture and say this child has been shot twice before he was 11. well, he's poor and he's black. getting shot is what he should expect i think very slowly we're seeing all the places that were supposed to be safe not being safe. but elementary schools. movie theaters. it's a long battle. but when you look in terms of
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generations. i am slightly optimistic. 70 pk of them think gun culture is out of control. and latinos overwhelmingly support gun reform. in the meantime, these horrific acts are continuing. it took us a long time to get here. and looking again from your report, the louisiana gun murder rate, this was in 2010. the u.s. average of 3.6. but in louisiana it's 9.5. then you also see mississippi, alabama, missouri. you know from having lived in thorls for some time, we always try to be ahead of mississippi. sometimes that's all we got. we're just better than mississippi. >> and speaking of generational impact.
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you would see people with babies at crime scenes. you would see 10 and 11-year-olds riding the bikes. we are missing the stressful impact of this. how can you go to school and be expected to concentrate if you're seeing the bloodshed and the bodies? >> you're absolutely right. how do you put together legislation that makes it safe for people in the streets? and doesn't run over the rights of law-abiding citizens who may happen to own a gun because they wish to own a gun? and the other part is how do you put together gun legislation that doesn't give an advantage to the good guys? >> if i felt what was happening is the louisiana state legislature were coming together and struggling with the question.
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and therm coming to different answers, then i would be all good. it's a big democracy. it doesn't feel like they are struggling. it feels like they're taking postures that we're going to show people not here, not in louisiana. it's part of the reason why i have many disagreements with mary landrieu, but her taking that vote earned a lot of respect for her for me. that she took that vote when so mem people do not. >> it's almost humorous and it's shapeful. one state rep said, this may be unconstitutional, but i like the bill. then let's vote. it was an embarrassment watching this play out. it was an embarrassment. >> yeah, i talked about hueghy long last week in part. when it was all the problems. nonetheless focused on the people.
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and at the moment it feels like it is not. and the costs are very, very real for us of us. thank you to you at home for starting to think through the real scans. but let me be really clear, we are not done yet. me be clear, e are not done yet. my foot soldier of the week is next and you do not want to miss this teenager determined to stop hate. mr. clean magic eraser extra power was three times faster on permanent marker. elsewhere against dirt, it was a sweep, with scuffed sports equipment... had it coming. grungy phones... oh! super dirty! and grimy car rims... wow! that really works! ...all taking losses. it looks like mr. clean has won everything. the cleaning games are finished? and so are we. okay, but i just took a mortgage out on the cabinet. [ male announcer ] clean more, work less, with the mr. clean magic eraser extra power. i'm goining to dream about t that steaka. i'i'm going toto dream about thatat tiramisu.u. whwhat a nightht, huh? but, u um, can thehe test drivie be over nonow?
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>> if you don't already know about her, i want to introduce you to a remarkable young woman. this is emily ann at 11. in elementary school she was bull ed for being overweight leaving her feeling ostracized and depressed. this is emily ann today, now 19 years old feeling empowered, vibrant and thriving having just finished her first year at barnard college. it is what happened in between these two photoses of emily ann's life that makes her our foot soldier in the week. simply put, emily ann is responsible for this kind of awesomeness. >> hi, everyone.
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>> i am alex. >> nice to meet you. >>. >> who are you? >> or in other words, teen self-esteem. >> all of us teenagers as a group need to unite and we need to get some team esteem going on and that's what this channel is all about. >> you guessed it. we stop hate. >> those clips are just a few from the more than 100 videos teens have submitted to the website we stop emily ann started the site when she was only 16 years old. she had been given a macbook by her aunt to learn how to edit videos and from her bedroom in williamsburg, virginia, she launched a platform for teens to tell their stories and to help one another gain confidence. >> there are so many things in your life that just pile up and are not good. the last thing you need it for yourselves to doubt yourself, to put yourself down or anything like that. you need to be good to yourself. >> what's the point of being something you're not?
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you weren't put in this world to be someone else. you were put on this world to be you. >> if you're overweight. that's okay. if you're bisexual, if you're straight, if you're gay, that's okay. if you're nerdy, that's wonderful. >> indeed, if you're nerdy, that is wonderful! the we stop hate mantra is simple. combat bullying by raising self-es time because people who are happy with themselves won't put others down. and now we stop hate is growing. this past school year in virginia, emily ann, along with her part-time staff of five launched we stop hate's first high school club which already boasts 60 weekly members and this summer, we stop hate will offer a resource packet available for download to teens anywhere. ultimately, emily ann wants to move beyond social media to do even more work on the ground. she wants to create a safe space for teens and make we stop hate an organization where young people can connect in person in schools everywhere.
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in addition to taking classes, emily ann will be working all summer long pushing her vision for we stop hate into reality and here at nerdland, that's the kind of summer job we salute. for taking that macbook and deciding to make a difference, emily ann regal is our foot soldier of the week. that's our show for today. thanks to you at home for watching and i'll see you tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m. eastern and we'll get into the conversation that angelina jolie has sparked by her double mastectomy. there are much more things complicated than the headlines suggest and we'll get into what's at stake with women, their health and their bodies and right now it's a preview for "weekends with alex witt." can i just say every love your foot soldiers. it's an awesome segment, i love it. >> let's get your reaction to the irs commissioner's congressional testimony as an influential conservative calls on top-ranking republicans to keep the heat on the administration. a new move to stop sex assault in the military. i'm talking to a survivor who
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made her case in front of congress. asbury park hard hit by hurricane sandy and it officially opens today. will it draw the tourists it needs? i'm talking with the mayor. richard engel tells me what world leaders are telling him about u.s. foreign policy. don't go anywhere. i'll be right back. [ female announcer ] doctors trust calcium plus vitamin d
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two commuter trains going opposite directions just outside of new york city collide at rush hour. we are live at the scene. more fallout from the irs controversy, calls for criminal charges and prison time. gun fire, chaos and a brazen jewel heist. what seems like something right out of the movies is playing out in real life at the cannes film festival. if you haven't bought your powerball ticket left you still have time to formulate the winning strategy for the $600 million prize tonight.


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