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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  August 9, 2013 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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now, a lot of challenges on the president's plate that haven't gone so well. then domestically the president has taken on water. congress is very unpopular but you start -- it's taken the president down a little bit because there is nothing getting done here. >> today, the president is widely expected to comment for the first time on this decision to diplomatically snub russian's president putin and their meeting is canceled and relationship on the rocks. just today a new warning shutting down the american embassy in lahore, pakistan and forcing dimts there and nonessential personnel for evacuate. kelly o'donnell is joining me now on the hill. what do we expect the president to talk about before his vacation? >> at this point, the senior advisers aren't giving us a heads-up what his opening statement might use and usually a president can use that to try to set an agenda for the new
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conferences. the best thing about a wide ranging news conference like this could be what is unpredictable. we know what the president said and what jay carney is saying in the briefing room and other opportunities to hear from the president. reporters will go lebanon for ways to pull out some new information or perspective. certainly we can expect there will be questions about the relationship with russia, the nsa situation what are the extreme or limits what spying in the u.s. or spying in terms of data collection might include. and then things like the domestic agenda. it certainly had been the hope of the white house that before congress had left town in august that an immigration bill might be signed. well, the senate got that done but not the house. so what can they look forward to in the weeks and months ahead? can anything on that subject be done? of course, when congress does get back to town, the president will have to deal with them on issues like the budget, the debt
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ceiling. the president has made clear he doesn't want to negotiate on the debt ceiling so there are big issues still ahead. i think the most important things to look for are any new pieces of information about that threat level. is the president able to be a bit more exclusive about that and his own sense of the relationship between the u.s. and russia now. presidential news conferences are a great opportunity for news to be made. some of it big and in scope and sometimes it's about an issue that no one is seeing coming. perhaps a question later in the -- in the session where someone asks something that is unexpected. those are always my favorite moments in watching this unfold. we do expect between now and 3:00 when is it starts that senior administration officials will give us some idea what they hope to achieve when the president meets the press today. >> kelly, thanks. joining me is david axelrod, the former senior adviser to president obama and msnbc political analyst. great to have you on. we had an opportunity to be on
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"morning joe" earlier today and where chuck todd had to say this about the fact that most likely this will not be the triumphant end to summer news conference that the president would hope for but what are you expecting the toughest question to be? do you think it's going to be domestic or about foreign relations with russia? >> there's plenty to choose from, obviously. these are challenging times. but the focus has been this week on foreign policy, on russia. a great deal of interest in those things. and then there will be some trying to project forward in terms of what might happen when congress returns in the fall as to the budget and immigration. so there's plenty for the president to rest with. i was laughing when i heard kelly saying it's interesting maybe we can shake something loose. you know they are sitting in the white house saying, you know, the very thing that reporters
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are hoping for are the things you don't hope for when you work in the white house which is that unexpected question. but there's plenty to go over in this press conference. >> how do they keep the fruit on the tree and how do the reporters shake the fruit off and figure out what is going on. you said this morning too as well the president has a habit of reaching out to former advisers. have you talked to him recently? because sources that i hear say this president while he would do that, he generally knows his own mind and knows the direction that he wants to go, especially for his agenda. >> there's no doubt about that. one of his strengths is that he has a long-term vision of things that he really wants to get done and he has the discipline to stick with that and he doesn't get too side-tracked by the frenzy of the moment in washington. yes, i've spoken to him recently and i'm sure he's reached out to others as well. he is good about keeping in touch and just keeping folks up
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to date and soliciting poise ntf view. >> was your conversation more personal or more professional? >> there were specific issues that i wanted to run by him. but generally when we talk, it is a wide ranging an oven personal discussion. it may involve some public issues and it also may involve, you know, the prospects for the chicago bulls which this conversation did. >> it's good to know you cover the full gamut there. i want to get you about what we know the latest terrorist threat that had the nonessential personnel of lahore embassy moving to another part of pakistan. it doesn't appear this is related to the terror threat that shut down the other 19 other diplomatic posts. do you feel this is an overreaction or is this just better be safe than sorry approach? >> thomas, i think we have learned from hard experience that we need to take all
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potential threats seriously. we have got diplomats working in dangerous places in the world and when there are potential threats, you want to protect as many of those people as you can. all of these facilities are continuing to operate but they are operating with scaled down personnel and that is the appropriate thing to do, if, god forbid, that wasn't done an something happened, there would be an awful lot of second-guessing as we have seen. >> when we talk about what is happening at the embassies i'm sure the president will get questions about the drone issue and drone strikes. they say 34 suspected al qaeda militants killed in less than two weeks now and three strims yesterday alone. we have a new poll showing favorable feelings toward the u.s. internationally it is up at 64% and '07 at 51%. could the drone strikes reverse that course? reverse that sentiment that we have been slowly regaining since '07? >> obviously, it's a complicated
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issue, but when you're faced with actionable intelligence and a potentially large threat, as apparently was the case here. i'm not speaking from intimate knowledge. you have to act and protect our security overall. and that is the decision, obviously, the administration, the president has made here. again, everybody has an opinion on these things, but when -- when something happens, when terrorism strikes, there's an awful lot of second-guessing why didn't we take a more aggressive posture in the first place? i know that they spend an awful lot of time considering how they proceed. that was true when i was in the white house. so my sense is that there was real actionable intelligence and a very deep concern that caused them to on step up their activities here, and that is part of the demands of national security and the era in which we
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live. >> when it comes to russia and the relationship that president obama has with vladimir putin, obviously, we know it's quite strained because of the fact the president has canceled that burglary meeting at the g-20 coming up in st. petersburg next month. what does it say about where these two men go from here? because there is such a strain. how do they fix this if they are not willing to meet face-to-face off to the side at the g-20 to kind of break down these barriers? how would you advise the president about wthat? >> thomas, i travelled with him to some of these bilateral meetings and conferences. you meet with the prospect you're going to be able to move forward on specific items. that is what presidential meetings are about. what needs to be done is the hard work underneath that level to make sure that those meetings are worthwhile and you see secretary kerry and hagel
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meeting with their counterparts today in washington and i'm sure that's to try to move the many items forward. it's not just edward snowden. there are many items of interests to to this countries that need work and that are important to both countries. mr. putin seems to tilt backward toward the cold war mental it's but, on the other hand, he knows that he has national interests, those national interests are intercepted with ours in places and there is an impetus for him as well to get things done. i think the cancellation of the meeting, of the summit of the bilateral meeting was intended to send a message, hey, we have got important business here and we have to set aside these thee at triricks. >> there is the issue of syria. the issue of human rights abuses
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taking place in russia. if they feel the issues need to be addressed isn't it difficult to overcome them if the president is not willing any longer to meet with vladimir putin? >> i'm quite certain the administration and the president is addressing these issues through the appropriate channels. again, think the value of a presidential meeting is when you think you can make progress and at this juncture, they obviously decided that progress was not at hand. and so at other levels of government, talks are going forward, but this was kind of a wake-up call for the russians that we are not going to tolerate some of the provocations that have become more common since mr. putin resumed his presidency. >> do you think that putin has been purposefully trying to embarrass the president on an international stage? >> i think putin obviously has, again, a cold war mentality.
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the president had a better relationship with the former president before putin. there are agendas that interact that are important and i think he's going to have to make some decisions to sort of tamp down that rhetoric or, you know, russia will suffer. >> msnbc senior political analyst, david axelrod. thank you. >> good to be with you. >> stay with us. we will have live coverage of president obama's news conference at 3:00 p.m. eastern. the news conference is the subject of today's big question. if you were part of the white house press corps, what would you want to ask president obama? all answers must be in the form of a gentlemen, "jeopardy" style. the breaking news we have been following the last hour coming to us from paris where all clear has been given at the
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eiffel tower. it's back over after anonymous call about a suspicious package was in towers. they have given it the all clear for the eiffel tower to reopen. >> is it a big jolt to power? >> i'm trying to istake you seriously. >> anthony weiner captured on camera mocking with reporters and scolding his staff as well. is he cracking under the pressure? we will weigh in on that. mitch mcconnell's run for re-election we talk about that as well next. ♪ now you can give yourself a kick in the rear! v8 v-fusion plus energy. natural energy from green tea plus fruits and veggies. need a little kick? ooh! could've had a v8. in the juice aisle.
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yet another sign the race for the white house is heating up. earlier than ever. the push to get women on the ballot is front and center in iowa today. the grum emily's list known for backing democratic women running to office is hosting madam president forum today in des moines. claire mccaskill is one of the featured speaker and a name that is going to be on the back of everybody's mind is hillary clinton. but as the group's president told our chris jansing yet, hillary clinton is not the only name on the short list of possible candidates. >> we do hope that hillary clinton will make a decision here and we would like to see her run, but the truth is we also have an incredible list of women on the bench to step up in 2016 if she chooses not to. amy klobuchar and janet
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napolitano and kristen gillibrand. >> kasie hunt joins us. who is getting the most enthusiastic? are there names as viable as hillary clinton's name? >> absolutely. hillary is at the top of the list here. she was mentioned by senator mccaskill as somebody who mccaskill would like us to call madam president in 2016. there is a focus on building the bench also. you've seen amy klobuchar, a senator from minnesota and kristen gillibrand from new york and wendy davis in texas. they polled caucus goers in iowa and showed 95% are ready for a woman president and 85% say it's likely. emily's list is focusing on the numbers as proof that this particular state, of course, kicking off the presidential season, is ready to choose a woman as their next leader. but keep in mind, thomas, the fact they are having this event here today is no coincide. tomorrow in ames which is
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nearby, republicans will gather with conservative candidates, they are hosting senator ted cruz and donald trump and rick santorum, the former presidential candidates. organizers wanted to make a contrast what is happening tomorrow and today. >> we are highlighting that coming up later where the gop is trying to bridge that divide with the gender gap. it seems, certainly from the crowd, the enthusiasm we hear there there is momentum that is building. on the republican side, it might be less. >> reporter: it's pretty clear that democrats here are really excited, especially about the prospect of a clinton candidacy. one thing i'm hearing from women i talked to this morning is iowa has never sent a woman to a federal office or to the governorship of iowa and there's some real frustration among attendees here that hasn't
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happened yet and part of the reason they are excited that hillary clinton may be returning to the presidential field. a frantic search for two missing kids and the suspected kidnapper may have explosives with him. searching for the real mona lisa. we will tell but that coming up. let's play: [ all ] who's new in the fridge!
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they found another body in the house they think is ethan, her brother but yet to be confirmed. joe fryar is in san diego. good morning. bring us up to speed what authorities believe to be the homemade explosives. why they think dimaggio has them. >> reporter: they have not been able to elaborate on that. based on evidence they found inside of his home in boulevard the home that burned down over the weekend. at this point, this manhunt is 24/7 operation with tips coming from across the country. investigators say it is possible that dimaggio and the missing teen could be anywhere in the u.s., canada, or mexico. they are concerned he could be armed with homemade explosives. that news surprised brett anderson, the father of hannah, the missing teen. he told us he and the kids spent lots of time at dimaggio's home 60 miles east of san diego.
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he knew dimaggio had gun you but learning he is explosives is beyond his comprehension. he never suspected dimaggio would be a suspect in this case after knowing him all these years. hannah's mother and her brother was found over the weekend. amber alerts in four states, california, oregon and washington and nevada. there was a cluster of possible car sight is on wednesday in northern california and in oregon but so far nothing has been confirmed by investigators. at this point, they are asking everyone to still keep an eye out for dimaggio's blue nissan versa and warning people not to approach the car because of the concern over those explosives. robert? thomas? >> such a bizarre story there. thank you. appreciate it. here is a look at the stories topping the news now.
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firefighters struggling to contain a wildfire. it has charred 14,000 acres and destroyed more than two dozen homes. documents obtained by "usa today" saying george zimmerman has tried to order a bullet-proof vest while out on bond on the trayvon martin shooting. new report from the cdc confirming a colorado man who died from west nile last year got that virus through a blood tran fusion. the patient was being treated for cancer when he was injected. heavy rains trig.ing mist and southeast. two people dead, a woman and child lost their lives after floods swept cars off roads in missouri. residents in tennessee and arkansas had to be rescued from flash fooged. researflooding. they are trying to find the
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caught on tape. those are the topics today for our agenda panel. kelly is joining us and bill share is also joining us. tgif, gang. great to have you here together. mitchell mcconnell talking points memo wrote about this late yesterday afternoon and about jesse benton who is mcconnell's 2014 campaign manager. he was speaking with a conservative activist by phone who then recorded that call and relieved it to the economic policy journal. explain the comments that jesse made and why they are so off putting to those knowing that he works with mcconnell? >> what jesse benton said he is essentially holding his nose for two years while he runs mcconnell's campaign because he believes that will be a benefit to rand paul in 2016. jesse is close to rand paul and his father ron paul. he ran the campaign, rand paul
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in 2010 that mcconnell tried to defeat. i think what benton wants to get out of this is get mcconnell's campaign contributors. no pretense mcconnell and benton like each other and get along. mcconnell needs to reach the conservative voters and benton is supposed to get him there bhap is damaging here is that fair? >> benton said he was upset about this call being leaked and says he is 100% committed to mcconnell getting re-elected. mcconnell put this on facebook. there is the picture. was this the best way to spin it? jesse benton does have deep ties to the paul family as he is married to ron paul's granddaughters. >> they say politics is further proof of what this business is.
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this is an extension of what we talked about on your program several times which is sort of a fight for the soul of the conservative and republican party. this is just a further extension of that. if you believe that these two guys bury the hatchet and this is behind them, then i have swamp land in florida to sell you that is worth a lot and have lots of gold buried in it. again, this is something -- look. i think this is a real problem seriously heading into midterms and 2016. this is becoming the narrative driving the republican and gop brand that they can't define their brand. >> i think there might be an ad that defines it and i want to show it. bill, take a look at this. a new ad touting mcconnell's fans from fancy farm, the picnic held last weekend in kentucky. take a look. >> he speaks what he speaks! his words are for kentucky. >> i'm here to support senator mcconnell because he is for freedom and he's all about
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kentucky! >> i think the takeaway there is freedom, firearms and coal, right? you wrote last week the kentucky race will play a big role in whether the gop takes back the senate overall. explain how critical this race is. >> republicans might pick up the senate and have a good chance to if they can get six seats but they have no margin for error to do that. if they give away seats that they should own like kentucky and georgia, i would add, that blows their whole shot. and right now, mcconnell is in a two-front war. he has a rand paul supporter on his right and democrat on his left in allison grimes and he is getting hit from the right for being for overspending and bang bailouts and from center for being the face of washington dysfunction. he made his choice to be an obstructionist and now that it's
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exposed that risk to get to the general election. >> that campaign dysfunction that you mentioned might seem like nothing. compared to what we are seeing in new york city with anthony weiner. he went door-to-door campaigning last night in harlem and appeared to mock reporters and even publicly scolded one of his staffers on camera. take a look at this. >> is it ambition? a big volt for power? >> i'm trying to take you seriously. no. it has to do with wanting to be mayor of the any of stork and wanting to help the middle class and those struggling to make it or the hunger for the big job! i just have a feeling like i stepped into a monty python bit. you want to do the weather or something? >> if you can do the weather. >> where is this from? in england? >> you can do the weather here in new york if you'd like. >> no, i'll do yours. it's going to be raining and cloudy and gray. do what you can. keep a head up and what is it?
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a stiff upper lip. >> weiner also asked a german reporter if he had indoor plumbing. is this an issue that looks as if the pressure might be getting to anthony weiner? because it seemed as if that i.t. reporter asking specific political questions, not trying to demean him. but asked him where his head was and he seemed to be joking back with him. >> right. right. this looks like a candidate in total free-fall right now. that video clarifies what is happening in the campaign right now. he was irritated and flinching at every question and mocking the reporter. these aren't things that a confident candidate does but what is he going to do at this point? he still has a lot of money to spend and at this point he pretty much has nothing to lose so he'll keep moving forward and the voters will make up their minds. >> if i was running the campaign against him i would signed sidney leathers and put her behind one of the doors he is
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knocking on. >> oh, my gosh! >> thomas? >> yes? >> in all seriousness i.t. is one of the largest networks in england. i would hear from friends in europe who watched it. it's like watching msnbc or the "today" show there. there is a concern being mayor of new york everyone knows you're considered a diplomat to the entire world because new york is one of the major cities of the world. that is troubling about this. what i also thought was interesting he was door knocking in harlem and i have a column up on the root today about why it is that black voters actually appear to be more forgiving of anthony weiner. the polls indicate that. i don't think a coincidence he was door knocking in harlem. >> maybe to build up his confidence and it doesn't look like the campaign is working in a confident place. bill, we look at this new poll from "the new york times" and see it showing that anthony weiner remains in last place. 10% of democratic voters supporting him now.
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it's the worse number out there since he entered this race but no sign he is going to drop out. do you think he's in it no matter what until september 10th? >> oh, i think he's in it until the end. anthony, you're doing it wrong you got to say. there's a path for political redemption after personal scandal and it's by focusing on the issues of voters, not drowning in self-indulgence. this might be a pivot point for the clintons where there is not a connection between personal failings and clinton and fdr and even woodrow wilson perhaps are examples of that. not to mention john edwards. compare that to democrats liking a wholesome family like the obamas being the face of their party. democrats might say it's better to deal with that than to be the party -- let the republicans be the party of newt gingrich's and we will be the party of the day. >> we have to leave it there. you can find more from our panel
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at our website at tv.msnbc.com. follow the link to my name. ranks of republican women in congress, is there a defined gender gap that can be bridged? we will talk about the efforts that are being made. a romance made. senator john mccain responding to the president's remarks about their new -- police pulled over a suspected drunk driver earlier this week and when the real show began. eventually police performed field sobriety test and they took him into custody. you see it at my facebook page. this is the one i was telling you about. the new samsung galaxy s 4. it's got a front and back camera so you can take pictures at the same time. seriously! yeah - and it's on verizon's network. sweet! we can stay in touch when we go to school next year. that's so great! get the samsung galaxy s 4 for only $148 on verizon - america's largest 4g lte network. walmart.
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with not only voters and in congress. a new article in the national currently examines why so fewer republican women represented in congress. there are 19 republican women in the house of representatives compared to 58 democrats. republican women senators are also outnumbered by their democratic counterparts. joining me is sarah mim who wrote that article for the "national journal." kasie hunt was talking about how in des moines they are trying to raise up women on the democratic for the presidential level and we highlighted the fact we are talking about this from the gop side as well. i know spou with a handful of republican strategists and female republican women p.m. are are they so underrepresented in congress? >> it hasn't been a main focus of the party for a while. this is something that coming off the last election with the huge gender gap in the presidential race that the republican party is admitting
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they need to do a better job with women and part of that is getting more members elected so they can reach out into their own communities and bringing women into the fold. >> republican congressman ann wagner just elected in 2012 told you why she is skrned about the low number of republican women in congress and in simple terms saying it's not good enough and it's not reflective of the electorate enshe elect tore electorate. >> they formed project grow which is specifically aimed not only at improving the party's messaging with women and helping some of their male members to reach out to women in a more positive way, but also to recruit more women to run for congress. so congresswoman who you mentioned and a number of others are going out and meeting and making phone calls and they are talking about women whether it be mayors or members at the pta,
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city council and trying to convince them to run. >> we know it's always about the bench and looking who is coming up the line. you want to make sure you are cultivating that. we have congresswoman kathy mcmorris who is telling you that her leadership role in congress is a step in the right direction. we call john boehner -- he later appointed congresswoman candace mill to chair the committee but this was after a large reflective voices that were saying this doesn't smell right. what is the lack of this mean for the republican party especially when we look at those types of objects? put the picture back up again. you can see the congresswoman circled in red in center and it's all white male committee chairs. >> right. . that's a big problem. you mentioned kathy
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mcmorris-rogers. she is still the highest woman in leads. and she was telling me now four women around that table and how encouraging that is to her. she and so many other republican women agree and i think the party is starting to come around this as a whole they need to be doing so much better and so that is why things like project grow are starting to come out of the works here. one thing i thought was interesting was out of every republican congresswoman and strategist that i talked to, no one could name something that was similar to something like emily's list or senator gillibrand's off the sidelines pact which try to recruit women to run for congress. the party just doesn't have that. >> sarah mims, thank you for joining us and nice to see both sides are taking this into the front burner issues of trying to get more women involved. >> thanks. lucy and ricky? obama and mccain? earlier this week, president obama joked leno.
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mccain went back to give his response yesterday and went back in tv history. >> which romantic comedy do you think describes your relationship now? some like it hot here? how would you describe the relationship right now? >> given me age, how about ralph cramden? what was it? "honeymooners." or maybe "i love lucy." >> both very good shows there. someone who doesn't have a romance with the president is there. matt damon. here is what he had to say during an interview with b.e.t. >> you have been critical of president obama in the past. how do you feel he is doing in a second term? >> he broke up with me. >> so matt has been left behind. what do oprah winfrey and former president bill clinton have in common? both will receive the presidential medal of freedom. the awards will be presented at the white house later this year.
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politico reports the immigration reform group backed by mark zuckerberg will air at backing congressman paul ryan. disgraced former new york governor eliot spitzer is ahead of scott stringer 44% to 35% for new york's comptroller's race. [ female announcer ] research suggests cell health plays a key role throughout our lives.
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welcome back, everybody. it's time for this week's go and do where we highlight businesses taking action in the name of the greater good. we have girls on the run dedicated to improving the
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health and fitness of girls through running and the program culminates with a 5k run but along the way girls in third through eighth grade develop life skills and improving their self-esteem. >> you learn how to pace yourself and how to endure more and you can meet really good friends. >> not only does it give you a good impression of what you should do physically, but it also gives you a good impression on how to be good to others and to yourself socially as well. >> great young women there. joining me now is allison, executive director of girls on the run nyc. great to have you here. 213 different councils. explain how the program works. >> as you mentioned, the girls meet together twice a week for 12 weeks and leading up to that 5k but during those weeks we have volunteer coaches who are trained and are training them to be able to run that 5k but
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delivering healthy lifestyle messages to these girls empowering them and inspiring them. >> explain the type of young girls who are attracted to this program. is it from a particular socioeconomic group or young women who are looking to become more athletic or try to learn healthier habits. in that piece we saw a range of young girls. >> that's what's great about the program. it's designed for every girl. so any girl in third through eighth grade can join girls on the run. some girls are excited about the running aspect. some girls are excited about making new friends. through the program they develop these life skills and they're running and dancing and leaping and joyful and it's meant for every girl regardless of their background. >> there is a registration fee which ranges from 100 to $225. >> it's cost per girl to put on the program. 39% of our girls receive financial assistance to be able to participate. so that's why we appreciate all of our donors and our national
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sponsors so much. >> can some girls be fully sponsored and not have to pay any registration fee through that. >> certainly. girls can be fully sponsored. we have an adult charity program called soul mates. they run in their own marathon or half marathon or 5k. they help us. >> for young girls, they are also volunteers. how can you find out more about girls on the run international. >> so go to girls on the run.org and you can find out where your local council is and how you can volunteer as a coach or running buddy at the 5k event or if you have a daughter or special young girl in your life, you can find out how to enroll her in this program. >> the best young woman i have in my life is my niece, katie. she's part of the program. she runs with my brother-in-law, ted. it's a great bonding experience for the two of them. there they are from a couple seasons ago. we have a picture of them at the finish line.
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they really look forward to this. it's something special they get to do together. do a lot of parents run? >> a lot of parents are running buddy at the end of the season. i was a coach for many years. i would talk to the moms and dads and they would build into the 5k like the girls are doing. they want the sense of accomplishment of reaching their goal. >> thank you for being here. i appreciate it. if you know someone we should celebrate on go and do tweet me with the hash tag goanddo. we'll bring you more and more of these great stories. thanks again. great to have you. that's going to wrap things up for me today. have a great weekend, everybody. i'll see you back here this afternoon at 2:00 filling in for tamron hall on "news nation." >> happy friday. president obama will meet the press this afternoon. we'll discuss the mounting list of foreign policy woes looming over his vacation. plus, mitch mcconnell's campaign manager is pledging his allegiance to rand paul in 2016.
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we'll break down radical right wing economics and the ben in ben & jerry's is trying to take a scoop out of corporate influence on capitol hill. we'll talk about his new initiative to stamp money out of politics. the boys used double miles from their capital one venture card to fly home for the big family reunion. you must be garth's father? hello. mother. mother! traveling is easy with the venture card because you can fly any airline anytime. two words. double miles! this guy can act. wanna play dodge rock? oh, you guys! and with double miles you can actually use, you never miss the fun. beard growing contest and go! ♪ i win! what's in your wallet? but, dad, you've got... [ voice of dennis ] allstate. with accident forgiveness, they guarantee your rates won't go up just because of an accident. smart kid. [ voice of dennis ] indeed.
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plays a key role throughout our lives. one a day women's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for women's health concerns as we age. with 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day women's 50+. today the president is packing his bags for a working vacation. one item in his suitcase, his national security binder. it's friday, august 9th and this is "now." as president obama prepares for an afternoon press conference today, one of the first questions out of the gate will likely touch on national security. at the end of a week in which all facets of the administration's counterterrorism policy have been on display. in response to intercepted
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chatter between top al qaeda leaders, the u.s. closed multiple embassies earlier this week. this morning following specific threats to the u.s. consulate in pakistan, the state department issued a new warning pulling embassy staff and urging americans not to travel to the country. those remain far from the administration's only concerns. there are more worrying headlines regarding rising hostility in egypt and ominously extremists flooding into syria. "the new york times" reports that over 6,000 foreign fighters there are assembling under a new even more extreme umbrella group the islamic state in iraq and s syria begging the question what are america's goals on its war in terror? in may, the president urged an end to perpetual war but this week proved that goal at least for now remains elusive. president obama assumed office
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promising to withdraw troops from iraq and afghanistan. in response to the latest terror threat, the president launched three drone strikes in yemen just yesterday killing 12. the strikes were part of a highly aggressive and mostly understressed strategy that eliminated 30 militants in eight separate strikes since friday. several months ago, president obama asserted al qaeda was on the run but this week the message is the terror group is weakened and but still dangerous. >> we decimated the al qaeda leadership that attacked us on 9/11, al qaeda affiliates and like minded extremists still threaten our homeland. still threaten our diplomatic facilities. still threaten our businesses abroad. we've got to take these threats seriously. >> the president's counterterrorism legacy will likely be defined by

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