tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC December 18, 2013 10:00am-11:01am PST
barrel bombs spreading death and destruction again in aleppo today. we'll have a live report on how civilians and too often children are paying the ultimate price. >> the broken country and across the divide are civilians on both sides terrified. olympic-size snub. who's heading to sochi? the white house is using its delegation to send a pointed message to russia about gay rights and other issues. and two jackpot winners are mega rich today. for one shop owner, just selling one of the tickets is a major prize. >> i feel good! feel good! come to my store! i feel good. i don't even know. i cannot sleep tonight.
and good day. i'm andrea mitchell in washington where the white house has made some surprising decisions for the upcoming winter olympics, sending a strong signal to vladimir putin that his crackdown on gay rights does not sit well with the obama administration. for the first time in more than a decade, neither the president, the first lady, or any sitting cabinet member will be in the official u.s. delegation for the opening ceremonies. and the delegation will include two openly gay former athletes. joining me now for our daily fix, chris cillizza, msnbc contributor, and capitol hill correspondent kelly o'donnell. chris, first to you. this is a very pointed signal. the delegation will be led by janet napolitano, now head of the uc university systems. not the vice president, the president, the first lady. this just hasn't been done. >> no. as you mentioned, the last time a sitting president, vice president, or first lady didn't go to a summer or winter olympics was sydney back in 2000.
the reasoning that the white house gave is even sort of meant, i think, to convey what they really mean, which is they didn't give any details about why the president would be too busy to attend, just that he would be too busy to attend. you point out, i think russia's policies on homosexuality are quite clearly on the president's mind. he's spoken out against them. he said he didn't think the u.s. should boycott over that, but he hoped gay and lesbian athletes would compete and win medals. also, the russian role in the u.n. vote on military intervention in syria and edward snowden providing him temporary asyl asylum, these are three major things in which the u.s. and russia have come into conflict with. i think the u.s. is sending a clear message that vladimir putin will not mis. >> there's a statement now from billy jean king, which says, i can't wait to get to russia to support the american team and to be part of one of the greatest
global events of our time. i'm equally proud to stand with the members of the lbgt community and i hope these olympic games will be a watershed moment for the universal acceptance of all people. obviously, we have a lot of big issues with russia. syria not the least of them. and the agreement to get rid of chemical weapons. but the white house has clearly decided it is worth it, important for its community, for its stand for human rights, to make this a big point. >> well, one of the things we always say about the olympics is it's supposed to be about the joy of sport and competition. but there are almost always some sort of political overtones. so in this, the administration can accomplish more than one thing. by supporting the athletes with this delegation that does include great winter sport s athletes from heroes and past teams, and having this political conversation, which will go on, and by her mere presence,
someone like billy jean king will make this a part of the conversation. others in the delegation who will want to talk about these lgbt issues. it forces it to be at the forefront while at the same time here are people with real standing to be among olympic athletes and there to support the athletic endeavor as well. so it has the benefit of being more than one point being made. to be very present by going to the games and representing the united states with these issues knowing that vladimir putin is going to be paying a lot of attention to his own credibility with all that he has put on the line for sochi. so that makes a realize difference in sending this kind of political message. >> and chuck has just asked this of jay carney at the white house briefing. let's listen to what jay has to say. >> janet napolitano and featuring brian boitano and billie jean king to represent the united states at the opening
ceremonies, to represent the government. deputy secretary of state bill burns and former olympians caitlin cahow will represent the united states at the closing ceremonie ceremonies. we are proud of each and every one of them and think they will serve as great ambassadors of the united states to the olympic games. >> is there a message trying to send on gay rights in particular? >> i think that this delegation represents the diversity that is the united states. every member of that delegation is extremely accomplished, either in government service or in civic activism or, most especially, in sports. so he's very proud of the delegation and the diversity it
represents, and he looks forward as every american does to the competition and to the effort that american athletes will demonstrate when they compete in sochi. >> i understand that, but would you wave off the interpretation that clearly the united states and the obama administration wants to send a message about russia's questionable treatment of -- >> i don't think -- i would simply say that's not a message we would wait to send through this manner. we have been very clear. the president has been very clear he finds it offensive, the anti-lgbt legislation in russia, for example. and we take very clear and strong stands on that issue as well as the curtailment of civil society in russia, as well as the harassment caused to those who protest corruption in
russia. you know, the issues we have with russia that we are very upfront about. >> you want this delegation to bring some attention to these issues. >> i think this delegation brings attention to the remarkable diversity of the united states as well as the success that the united states has had in sports, both at the olympics and beyond. >> well, you can see that jay carney is clearly sending the message as chuck todd tries to pin him down. they are clearly sending a message to sochi, to russia, to putin. >> yeah, and look, the emphasis -- you heard jay carney say the wordy verse -- the wordy ver -- word diversity three or four times. jay carney mentioned this, that president obama has spoken out on this in the past. he has. he's said, look, we're not going to boycott the games because of that, but he did say he hoped that gay and lesbian members of
the u.s. team did win medals. so quite clearly i think the president making a statement here. you know, i think jay is being cautious not to sort of go too far beyond and above what the president has already said on it. >> chris cillizza, kelly o'donnell, thank you so much. and mississippi senator roger wick eer now joins us. he's one of the leading members opposing today's budget deal. he joins us now. senator, thank you for being with us. >> glad to be with you. >> let me ask you about your objections because of the military retirees, the pension cuts. there have been a number of people, including john mccain, who have pointed out this will be fixed before it kicks in. so why vote against the whole budget deal to make this point? >> andrea, this has been a good fight, and i think the fact that we have been so aggressive on this has maybe gotten us a little farther down the path than we would have.
i think before we got the facts, the american people thought, you know, 1% less c.o.l.a. is no big deal. >> the cost of living increase. >> that's right. it was a small group at first that pointed out. this means $80,000 plus to the average enlisted guy, over $120,000 to the average officer lifetime. and it's a huge chunk of income to take from the people that stepped forward and volunteered to have a military career. so i think we've made some progress. we had an opportunity yesterday to actually correct this in the bill. a lot of people who have given lip service to making a correction chose, for whatever reason, not to vote with us on that. so you know, a promise is nice. an assurance that we will visit this later on, have hearings, introduce stand-alone bills, that's helpful, but it's not the same as getting the language
that was negotiated in secret changed before it goes to the president for his signature. >> i want to play a little bit of yesterday's arguments from the senate floor. this is john mccain. >> i understand that there are many of my colleagues on this side of the aisle that are very unhappy with this deal and intend to vote against it. my only response to that is i respect their vote, but i'd like to know what we do in order to avoid another shutdown of the government. i have concerns about the budget deal. everybody, i think, does because the nature of the way business is done. but to somehow vote against it without an alternative to keep the budget -- keep the government from shutting down, then i think lacks some intellectual integrity. >> what do you say to that?
>> well, i think we did have an alternative. i really respect senator mccain, and i respect his military service. but i think he was presenting a false choice. it wasn't a choice between shutting down the government. we have until the middle of january to work this out. and we could do it if, as we've been assured by the leadership, this is something that really needs to be fixed and we're all agreed on. so it's a false choice. we could have fixed it. whether we win today or not, and it looks like we will not prevail today, we're going to carry this issue forward and make sure that we don't take a heavy chunk out of the hides of the people who volunteered to keep us safe. >> thank you very much. thank you, senator wicker. merry christmas and happy new year to you. >> thank you. and this is one of those dog stories that we all love. we all know labs are smart and loyal. but orlando, the black lab, proved he is just more than a man's best friend.
he's also a lifesaver. cecil williams, a visually impaired man, fainted and fell on the subway tracks. without hesitating, his guide dog orlando jumped on to the tracks and tried to pull him back. witnesses did get the engineer of an oncoming train to brake but not in time to prevent at least several cars from running over both man and dog. miraculously, they suffered only minor injuries. now they're up against a new battle. 11-year-old orlando is set to retire as a guide dog. williams could lose his trusty guide because his insurance will only pay for an actively working dog. today people on social media have maxillofacial iobilized to aid. we'll keep you posted on how you can help on our facebook page. life with crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
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the budget which is expected to pass the senate later this afternoon is going to at least establish fiscal peace for the next two years. joining me now is jason furman, chairman of the president's council of economic advisers. thank you very much for joining us from the lawn. a beautiful day here in washington. and there is at least the first compromise we've had, the first budget we've had in years. it doesn't do nearly enough, critics would say. it doesn't hit either entitlements, tax reform, or the other big issues though. >> oh, andrea, i think this is a great example of common sense winning out. there is always something that was win-win for all of us, which is to make sure we're doing more today to invest in things like education and infrastructure while also cutting the deficit over the medium and long run. i think that's a winning strategy for our economy. in the short run, i think that's a winning strategy. i completely agree with you. the president would have liked
to have seen even more of that strategy, something even bigger, would have liked to have seen revenue, would have liked to have seen some progress on some of our biggest structural challenges. but if you ask me as an economist, i think this will be very good for our economy over the next year or two. >> is this going to send enough of a signal to the business community that they can have sort of a predictable year or two? do you think they'll finally start spending some of the money they've been sitting on? >> i certainly hope so. one of the puzzling things about the economy in the last year has been that business investment has been relatively slow, even though business profitability is quite high. uncertainty is probably part of that story. and this should certainly give any business a greater uncertainty that we're not going to have another government shutdown. we do see the unemployment rate coming down. a lot of consumer demand poised to increase and, you know, so the certainty you need to make those investments. >> and the numbers -- the
housing starts numbers were pretty good today. does that signal something broader happening finally in the economy in the recovery? >> well, housing -- we've now had a couple straight years of very strong housing growth. it's been a big part of our overall gdp growth. i think we continue to have substantial potential in the housing sector. we're well below the steady state levels of housing construction that we're ultimately going to get to in economy. >> i know you're not going to answer questions about fed policy and the fed's meeting today. i just want to ask you about senator rand paul's statement again today that he's going to lead some opposition to the confirmation of janet yellen to be the new fed chair when it comes up apparently for a vote tomorrow. what do you say to people like rand paul who are trying to stop the confirmation of the chair of the federal reserve system? >> well, congratulations on finding a fed question. i i'm more than happy to comment on. janet yellen is just outstanding. she's as well qualified as anyone that's ever been
appointed to that position. she's been a real professional in the fed for over a decade in her career at a variety of different levels, variety of different parts of the fed. she knows exactly what we need to do to have price stability, to have economic growth, to have financial stability. and i am confident the senate will confirm her. >> thank you very much, the chair of the economic advisers, jason furman. great to see you. thanks. and it is a very good day economically for two lucky lotto winners. they woke up hundreds of millions of dollars richer this morning. the new record jackpot created a frenzy across 43 states, the u.s. virgin islands and here in d.c. the newly minted mega millionaires have yet to come forward, but the shop owner who sold one of the golden tickets in san jose, california, is indeed celebrating today. his store will receive a payout of roughly $1 million, making him a winner too. >> i feel good! i'm a lucky person.
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all day pain relief with just two pills. a new report this week says that chinese hackers attacked the federal election commission's website and it happened when no one was watching. according to the center for public integrity, the system was breached while all the commission's 339 employees were furloughed in october as part of that government shutdown. the security breach comes only months after an independent auditor said the fec system was at high risk. cpi senior reporter david levinthal joins me now. first of all, what made the fec particularly vulnerable to chinese hacking? >> well, as you mentioned, the audit report from a year prior effectively said, look, if you don't get your act together and fix numerous, numerous vulnerabilities you have in your system, you're going to be very vulnerable to an attack just like this. it was very prophetic. at the end of the day, there was
a confluence of two things. you had the government shutdown where every single last employee was furloughed at the fec. not even a skeleton crew in place. >> nobody was essential. >> nobody was there. nobody was deemed essential. then, of course, you had the situation of them just having a very bad i.t. system to begin with that hadn't resolved the problems that had been put in place. >> what have they done there about password protection in the past? >> password protection is a key there. you have some accounts that go back to 1998 that have had the same password the entire time. >> whoa, whoa. same password since 1998? >> almost the dawn of the internet. we've talked to the commissioners, of course, as part of this article. they promised, in fact, there's a new chairman and a vice chairperson who said they're going to stand shoulder to shoulder, do everything they possibly can to fix this. but it really speaks to an underlying problem at the fec, which is that democrat, republicans, congress, the white house, they've paid very little
attention to this agency and the government shutdown was a perfect example in what esteem they hold this agency in when they didn't have a single person left to keep the lights on. >> well, this comes after years and years, as long as i've covered politics in washington. the fec has been, let's face it, toothless. they slap people on the hand five or ten years after they've run for president. so what's the point? doesn't this lead to a larger argument about the fec? >> it really does. in a way, it's sort of like having two football teams take the field and say, we'd like some more referees to go and keep us in line. but if you're part of the american public, if you've ever voted, if you've ever gone to an election booth, if you've ever participated in politics at any level, even though the fec is not the sexiest agency by any stretch of the imagination, you should care about this agency because they are the government watchdog put in place after watergate that was supposed to monitor all elections and all
the actors, all the groups that want to influence elections and make sure they're abiding by the law. >> and homeland security has issued a statement to us today saying, while the investigation is ongoing and no final determination has been made at this point, there are no indications that any sensitive information or other personal data were compromised. that could mean they have never even collected any sensitive information or personal data. and the fec issued a statement on its own behalf saying, the vice chairman confirms that upgrading the fec's technological capabilities, particularly its website and related security, is a priority. major i.t. improvements funded by existing funds are already underway. >> and that's our understanding too. but again, even if nothing sensitive in terms of classified information or information such as that was compromised, still, this is an agency that exists for transparency and discloture. if you can't discloe the millions and millions of records they have available to the public for the most public events, which is an election,
then the website was down for days at a time, even during some special elections. cory booker's election in new jersey, for example. nobody could get access during that people. >> dave, thanks. great reporting. thank you for being here today. and coming up, the diplomatic dust-up that has the u.s. in hot water with india. but with less energy, moodiness, and a low sex drive, i saw my doctor. a blood test showed it was low testosterone, not age. we talked about axiron. the only underarm low t treatment that can restore t levels to normal in about 2 weeks in most men. axiron is not for use in women or anyone younger than 18 or men with prostate or breast cancer. women especially those who are or who may become pregnant and children should avoid contact where axiron is applied as unexpected signs of puberty in children or changes in body hair or increased acne in women may occur. report these symptoms to your doctor. tell your doctor about all medical conditions and medications. serious side effects could include increased risk of prostate cancer; worsening prostate symptoms; decreased sperm count; ankle, feet or body swelling;
there are protests in india today as a diplomatic feud is heating up between the u.s. and india over the arrest and strip searching of a deputy console general in new york city. treatment of a woman that india says violates all protocol and cultural taboos. with all such things, there is more to the story. nbc's justice correspondent pete williams joins me now. that's a barrier we just saw which was being removed from the u.s. embassy in new delhi in protest. the indians removed security devices, including those barriers, from around the embassy. now we just hear reuters says from traveling with secretary of state kerry that he has called
the national security adviser in india and has expressed regret. obviously, they're trying to smooth this over or issue some sotorortorm -- form of apology. what happened here? >> the united states has filed criminal charges against this woman. now, let's stop right there. she's a counselor official. she doesn't have full diplomatic immunity. she's only protected for official business. what the u.s. says here is when she brought someone from india to work in her home here in new york as a babysitter and housekeeper, she promised the u.s. government and say so on the visa application that the woman would be paid under the con f conformance of u.s. law. what actually happened is this woman was made to sign a second contract in which she said she'd make $3 an hour and work more than 40 hours a week. in fact, the woman was paid even
less than that and worked a lot more. this come complained to u.s. authorities she was being abused. she complained her passport was taken away, told she couldn't leave and she was stuck working there. that's why the government filed these charges. she was arrested last thursday by diplomatic security personnel from the state department. then she was turned over as would anybody be arrested under federal charges to u.s. marshals who followed the usual routine procedure and subjected her to a strip search. they said it was very brief. she was then held in the general prison population with other female detainees. the woman has claimed she was seriously mistreated, that she was subjected to a cavity search. the marshals deny that. i note one other thing here. it may strike people as odd that someone arrested for such a minor thing, not a serious crime, a violent crime would be sun subjected to a strip search, but this is routine in the federal
system. in fact, the u.s. supreme court said last year in a case that it's constitutional. >> well, apparently the secretary of state, if the reports from his traveling plane -- he's coming back from asia. if those reports are correct, then he's apologizing. so i guess they are trying to smooth that one over. also wanted to record keep on jay carney announcing that this task force on the nsa and potential abuses has issued its report to the white house. we knew it turned it in on friday. it's going to be released today. we know they recommended separating the cyber commands from the military cyber command from the civilian in nsa on phone collection. and also that the phone collection be kept at the companies rather than kept bithe nsa for five years. the president, though, is not going to issue his recommendations until a speech sometime in january, right? >> so if they do that, that would be a big deal for a couple of reasons. one is it would end all the legal problems. you know a judge just this week said that violates the
constitution when the government collects all that data. so if the phone companies, which already have it, simply hold on to it for a longer time and give the government some way to get access to it quickly, that would solve the legal problem and a lot of the objection of civil liberties groups to the program. but of course, they'd have to be paid to do that. the companies say they have no business reason to hold on to all that data for more than six months. they'd have to buy a lot more servers to hold all that stuff. the government would have to pay them to do it and figure out some way so that the government could easily chase numbers back and forth as they go through different phone companies. there would be a lot of technical things to work out there. >> pete williams, thanks very much. as i said, the president will announce his recommendation, but not until the new year. and fab four fans, 59 previously unreleased tracks recorded by the beatles 50 years ago are now available on itunes. the rare recordings include alternate takes or demos of some of the group's first hits, including an early version of
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more wounded from these attacks. nbc's kier simmons joins me by phone from damascus. we know there's been fighting and brutality on both sides of this civil war, but the barrel bombs and the air power of the regime give it exponentially more power. what's happened to aleppo is just an unremitting tragedy. >> it really is, andrea. and it has been at the same time a major shift in this war, frankly. because western nations are reported to have indicated to syrian opposition groups that peace talks next year may not lead to the removal of president assad from power. as i say, that is a major shift that we've seen while we've seen the growing power of extremist groups on this opposition side. we have to say, of course, that the moderate opposition have been calling for a long time for more help from the west and say that they have not received that in the way that they wanted to. and some suggested in that gap
of aid, these extremists have managed to be on the rise. but it does mean that the government forces at the moment do seem to have the momentum. as you say, they carry on this aerial bombing, even with peace talks along the way. at the same time, the humanitarian crisis in this country, andrea, just gets worse and worse. >> now, i know that you're in damascus. you've been out where people are waiting in line for food distribution. and there are so many displaced persons within syria who have moved from place to place so the refugee crisis is a crisis exterminally for the neighbors but also certainly inside the capital city. >> that's right. one aid worker told me today he has never seen anything like this. some of these displaced people, internal refugees, if you like, have moved, say, three times. so you can imagine they have lost almost everything or practically everything that they own. we spent the day today at a food distribution center watching
desperate families begging for help, applying for meager provisions. and then we saw a group of children with pots and pans standing on a corner. andr andrea, they were standing there waiting to be given some food that might be left over. we watched as they -- it appeared their families had not been able to register. each of these children, some of them 7 years old, one of them told me, carried away these hot and heavy pans down the street back to their families. we also saw a gas station where crowds were gathered around, desperately trying to get hold of fuel in really small containers. one man told me the price of fuel here has increased by 300%. so you have inflation, you have hunger, and at the same time, you have fear across this
country. even while we were talking to people at that distribution center, you could hear gunfire and explosions in the distance. >> keir simmons, thank you so much from damascus on this continuing tragedy in syria. and back here at home, budget compromise. the expectation today is there will be a senate vote and that the bipartisan budget deal will pass. how rare is that? well, freshman senator joe manchin says it's the first bipartisan bill he's seen since he was elected. senator, thanks very much. this is a rare sighting. a bipartisan budget deal on the floor today. >> andrea, i've been here for three years. we haven't had a budget conferee, a budget agreement on anything. we haven't even had a budget. for the last five years, no budget. to see this come to fruition, i give congressman paul ryan and senator patty murray all the accolades they deserve.
it's their temperament, their whole approach to try and get something done but also to build a relationship. that's what this is all about up here. they've done that. i know there's a lot of people complaining. you're not going to find a perfect piece of legislation up here. but moving in the right direction in an orderly process, they've accomplished that. i think it's something that we should move forward and try to improve upon. >> 51% of those polled in our latest nbc news "wall street journal" poll last week said that this is one of the worst congresses ever. do you agree with that assessment? >> well, i think if you base it on result, i've always been a result-oriented person, there's never been a least productive congress than what we're in right now, the 113th. i'm ashamed to be a part of that. that's not what i came here to do. i'm going to continue to work to improve it. but people have to start putting their country first. it's one thing to be a democrat or a republican. the most beautiful thing we all have is we're all americans. we should be really rooting and fighting for our country. we're harming our country right now by not coming together.
>> you know, the fact is that you were a governor. it strikes me that coming as a chief executive from west virginia, a lot of governors have a tough adjustment to being one of 100. they're used to getting their way. but this makes it even worse, harder to figure out. how do you get anything done? >> andrea, i just can't -- my state of west virginia, we don't do business like this back home. you know, no matter how much we got into a tangle politically, democrat and republican, i would bring everybody together and say, listen, this is not about me and you and it's not about our priorities. this is about our state of west virginia, and it deserves better than what we're doing. so we'd get together and make something happen. i thought we'd do the same here. they could learn a lot about how we do business in west virginia. >> let me ask you about guns. you were trying to make it possible for a bipartisan coalition for background checks. we all know that you are a gun enthusiast. we saw your commercial, you
know, your campaign commercial when you were running for office. nothing has taken place. it's a year since newtown. not even changes in the mental health law. none of the things that the nra has supported in the past. what's the next step? what can you do? >> andrea, i'm hoping that basically we can all come to our senses. this is the most common sense approach that pat toomey and myself have taken. coming from gun culture, we basically said law-abiding gun owners like myself are not going to sell to strangers, to someone who's been a criminal, or someone who has mental problems or give it to a family member that's not responsible. we're just not going to do that. but we think it's absolutely fine that if you have a commercial transaction, you don't know the person, you go to a gun show or on the internet, you should know and i should know. that's what we do as law-abiding gun owners. most people agree with that. most gun owners agree with that. what it's gotten down do, they just don't trust government. they don't think the government will stop there.
they said, joe, i like your bill, i'm sure that fine, it doesn't bother me, but i'm not sure i want to do anything because i'm afraid they'll try to take more. i can assure you, that's not going to happen as long as i'm here. but that's the problem. that's what we really run into. that's the roadblock we're facing right now. >> they should talk to the parents and friends and family of that high school student, the young woman who is in a coma, in a hospital in colorado after what happened last week there. one of the issues is mental health. glen close has become an activist because of the issue of what happened to her sister, who was diagnosed at age 50 with bipolar syndrome. she talked about it today in washington. >> it's incredible to me that it's still so, so difficult for people to talk about it. so our passion is to make mental illness as easy to talk about as diabetes or cancer. speaking across the country in
colleges, towns, there is a feeling that people are just waiting for permission to start the conversation. and i think if they understand that their representatives in washington actually hear them and care about what they're going through on a daily basis and will help their communities, i think that is going to change the climate and the landscape of mental health in this country. >> so finally, senator, what chance does that mental health legislation have? >> i think it does have good opportunity there. it's something that should be done. you know, in our bill, in the background check bill that we had, had a commission on mass violence, which basically acknowledges and recognizes we need to do something with video violence, we need to do something with school safety, and we need to do something with mental illness. and all of the people that seem to have been identified as these horrific crimes they've
committed have had mental instability or mental illness. it's something that we deal with and we've got to deal with it. it's in our society. it's something that we got to address. i think with a new affordable health care act, that's that will be paid for and treated. that's a start in the right direction. we just have to do so much more. we need to be listening to our teachers. i go to grade schools and even to preschool. they're telling me they can identify a student very young knowing they have problems and challenges and not getting any help at home, but they have nowhere to send them to. there's no resources to help them. that's what needs to be done at a very early age, detecting and getting treatment. >> senator joe manchin. thank you for being with us. >> merry christmas. >> the same to you. and happy new year. and rare video. this is mitt romney as you haven't seen him. that's up next. [ baby cooing ]
i can't believe you're going to lose. >> yeah. >> what do you think you say in a concession speech? >> someone have a number for the president? >> i do. >> hadn't thought about that. >> that's a rare glimpse behind the scenes, mitt romney on election night before his concession. we're joined by nbc news white house correspondent peter alexander, our romney campaign correspondent in 2012. thanks both very much. to you, pete, this is an unusual glimpse. it is -- it was shot by a friend of the romneys so we had unusual access, going up on netflix in january. it's obviously a very favorable kind and sympathetic interpretation of the romneys but it's still unusual to see a
candidate this candidly behind the scenes. >> andrea, i think you're right. it's compelling and it will be fascinating for a lot of people. this was shot by a guy named greg whitely, a friend of tag's, over the six years of campaigns, not just the 2012 campaign but the 2008 campaign. i just hung up with the phone with an aide close to governor romney who says he hasn't seen the documentary but it let's americans get a better sense of who the real mitt romney is, which is remarkable that now even a year later they are still trying to sort of demonstrate the real honest mitt romney for a campaign that was viewed as so ins lar, at one point the candidate romney and himself in the documentary concedes he may be a flawed candidate because he's been tagged as the flip-flopper. one other note worth saying, apparently the romney family is having discussions with hawaii
vacation with the grand kids which may have him overlapping with president obama. >> we want to talk about congressional retirements and a number in the past few days from the centrist part of the republican party. what does that forebode? >> it's fascinating. frank wolf represented virginia for 17 terms, calling it quits, competitive see mitt romney won 51% and john boehner one of the closest allies, and jim mathison in utah, a democrat, against all odds. jim mathison won re-election repeatedly since 1998 but won it in 2012 when he had 66% of the district. all three of these people are people who come from center idealogically but are sort of
legs lors who view congress's main job as getting things passed. with wolf and latham, he got booed at recent events, when his name was mentioned. but i will tell you from a political junkie perspective, the utah seat is almost certainly the flip. but iowa and virginia, those will be two extremely competitive districts in 2014. >> we saw how competitive the governor's race is and in virginia on the attorney general's side and this is really a big change. thanks to peter alexander and chris cillizza. that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." follow the show online and on twitter at mitchell reports. my colleague, my friend, tamron hall is right here with a look at what's next on "news nation." >> i have to take a picture with
you so we can tweet it out on "news nation." we rarely see each other in person. now that our love fest is over -- thank you very much. coming up, we're following several developing stories, the white house says it is about to release a report that recommends changes to the nsa program. that report will be released in the next few hours. we'll go live to the white house. also in the next hour, nasa is expected to reveal more details about three space walks it describes as urgent. the repairs to the international space station. it would be the first u.s. led space walk since an italian aus astronaut nearly drowned after water leaked in his helmet this year. a hearing in detroit, a judge could decide whether there's enough evidence to try the man who shot and killed an unarmed detroit teenager, mcbride. we'll go live to the detroit area. open to innovation. open to ambition. open to bold ideas.
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the white house says it is releasing an independent task force report that recommends changes on how the nsa collects intelligence data. white house press secretary jay carney says the report ordered by president obama following classified leaks by edward snowden will be made public later today. >> over the next several weeks, we will be reviewing the report and the 46 recommendations as we consider the path forward, including sorting through which recommendations we'll implement and which might require further study and which we will choose not to pursue. while we intended to release the review group's full report in january, given inaccurate and incomplete reports in the press about the report's content, we felt it was important to allow people to see the full report to draw their own conclusions. for that reason we will be doing that this afternoon, releasing the full report. >> let'set