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tv   MSNBC Special Coverage  MSNBC  January 20, 2015 5:00pm-9:01pm PST

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nks entirely to the president's critics that aligned themselves at each election. they need to hide on nights like tonight when the entire country is watching. that is "hardball" for now, the msnbc special coverage of the address begins right now. good evening and welcome to msnbc's special coverage of the state of the union address. to article two, section three of the constitution that says the
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president from time to time shall give congress information on the state of the union. that time is now. it is the biggest night of the year in american politics. tens of millions of americans expected to tune in tonight to see what president obama has to say and what will be his first state of the union before congress in which both the house and the senate are controlled by the opposite party with big majorities. since the election the republicans won all of those seats in congress president obama has newfound eagerness maybe even glee in getting stuff done. we are expecting to hear more tonight about what the president might have up his sleeve. >> i agree with that. i believe the president holds the edge tonight. he can set the course for those who think and feel about the country the way that he does. he can and will say that through
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executive action or with the help of the republican majority in the congress or what he would like his successor to do. he can do this. as stuck as they are with allies on the hard right, renegades like the bomb throwing ted cruz. they were so far out they could not even vote boehner speaker again. in a prime time moment when so many people in this country are actually watching. and obama has the edge tonight. he can say what he thinks and wants for this country. >> we're here with reverend al sharpton and chris heyayes. and steve is at his terrifying wall of lights tonight.
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i know you have been crunching numbers. >> i will stick with big board, the answer about where the president stands right now is he had something he has not had in a long time. it's tentative momentum. it raises the stakes for what he has to say tonight. the approval rating. just out today, 46% approve, 48 disapprove. the significance is this is the best the president has done in this question for object of 2013. that was the height of the government shut down. if there is something driving this, more than anything else it was this question asked in the poll today. people were asked assess the state of the economy. are you satisfied or dissatisfied. more people are dissatisfied than satisfied. here is the significance. this is the highest this number
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has been president the highest of the dissatisfied number since the middle of george w. bush's presidency. you have to back to 2006. maybe the president's numbers are improving. we asked people in this poll the most urgent priorities for 2015. what should they do above all else? ? creating jobs defeating isis deficit reduction, more security for the border. and dealing with iran's nuclear program. that's what people say should be addressed bf and above everything else. if you look at the rest of the list, a lot of the president's priorities here. they may be popular individually. reducing income inequality. raising minimum wage addressing climate change closing guantanamo. people may like these in
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concept, but when you ask them what congress and washington should be doing, it's not as much as a priority. when we get to this idea of fragile momentum. he announced diplomatic relations with cuba that was very popular. here is one of the first decisions he will face with the new congress. should they move forward on the keystone pipeline? he will probably veto it. when the president begins speaking about an hour from now,ly ask you to long on to and you can a assess how he is doing as he speaks. we will track it on the screen as the "state of the union"
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progresses. >> that was great analysis but i would have used the abc poll that has him at 50%. we have our panel joining us right now. chris hayes, casey sharp, and al sharpton. >> he is a special edition. >> he steals your paper. >> my brain is still okay. >> heading into this tonight, guys looking at those numbers that steve was just putting out there, the one that strikes me is the two to one approval for cuba. >> i would stop talking if i was the republicans, chris. >> yeah the republicans they have a certain constituency that hates this policy. there is a few republicans tonight including john boehner and marco rubio. they despise this change in
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policy. and it took i think the president entering that final two years when he was sort of out past concerns about these constituency groups. he was offending people unnecessarily because he was focussed on the priorities. and i think there is a lot of stuff like that that he can do. i think whether it is climate or immigration, it's been working for him. >> why do they go for depleting assets? why didn't they pick up like the democratic party. what they used to do they pick up. they will become more and more open to going back to cuba and finding a way to guess around with that country. that's no future for the republicans. >> they are still living in a time that is gone. they're watching cozi and we're
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in 2015. i think when you look at these numbers, that when you see the overwhelming majority of americans concerned about jobs and this president can point to job creation this congress has blocked the private sector jobs. imagine if we have infrastructure for our jobs bill where we would be looking. he comes into it with momentum but he comes in with a track record. if he plays off of that he is set an agenda that will be very difficult for them to come out of here tonight. >> you look at what the president has moved on as president since the election. it's climate change immigration, cuba. i wonder casey, those are all difference changes. they could divide the republican party. some republicans could be divided off.
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>> first, this is a president that has been freed, right? he doesn't have a bunch of democrats in the senate from southern states. he is a lot more free to do what he wants without consequences on his side. on the flip side we're already seeing so much of the 2016 presidential election playout. suddenly in the senate the shoe is on the other put it. mitch mick continuecconnell is worried about facing senators in blue states. >> the defining question for all of american politics right now is does the trajectory look like reagan and clinton or george w. bush. the jobs numbers turned around it's able possible to have a reagan trajectory. it is night and day for what gets done and what happens in
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2016. >> you should serve the good wine last. >> we usually turn our water to wine. >> let's bring in senator amy klobuchar. she was just added as the chair of the democratic party. you have always been sort of a upbeat person. tonight might be the best night for you to talk? >> i think this is a new white house. i think the president is energized and every time he did one of these things that had to be done the immigration action or what he did with cuba people predicted he was going to tank. look at his numbers here. he is at his highest approval in at least a year or more and it really is because of the fact that i think he is acting energized energized, and moving forward. i would not be here today if my dad had not been able to get me
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a college degree. my sister didn't get a high school degree and she went on to a community college and got her g.e.d. and is now an accountant. i think the fact that he is focusing on things not just the fact that we have seen an improved economy, we know that. >> senator klobuchar, no one is expecting great economic achievement for this president and a republican controlled congress. there wasn't a lot of legislative achievement before. how are democrats in the senate going to approach these next two years? do you think there is stuff that you will get done? are you essentially going to be doing block books maneuvers and defense. >> i think it will be a combination. i truly believe there are things
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we can move forward on. one of them reverend sharpton just mentioned and that is infrastructure. there is big republican support for moving on infrastructure. we have to get some ideas for how to do it. some republicans are willing to talk about the fact that we have to make it easier for kids to go to college. the chamber of commerce has one of their pop priorities, i'm graduation reform. i think there can be movement on some of these bills. there will also be a lot of defense. also offense, putting these new details out there. it doesn't mean they're not right for the long term. we have to start thinking the long game. we are no longer governing from a crisis. a lot of the policies are good businesses, good workers, we have to seize those opportunities. >> are you surprised that he is asking for a declaration of war
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against isis are you confident voting for that? >> we like to see what we're voting on. we would like to see a authorization of force. i think we have to have a real debate. i want to hear what the president has to say today, but i think it is very important. i think we have to have this debate, get the language right, and move forward. there has to be limitations. senator amy klobuchar joining us, have a good night tonight. now we're being joined by jose it's good to see you. what i want to ask you about tonight is you have been so acute on the issue of not just immigration policy but immigration politics and how the issue of immigration, the wrangling around immigration resonates in our politics. one of the huge issues tonight
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is that the department of homeland security is not funded. it's funded for a couple more weeks, republicans are withholding because they are so mad about immigration. will we hear about that tonight? >> it is a fundamental issue and it runs out in february. and it is interesting just to think when the elections are held last november and from then to now, how the entire discussion that this country has been having has been set by the white house. think about it, we talked about that. the issue for example of cuba. the issue of immigration reform. i see it very difficult for the republicans to do anything in the house and senate that can bring some immigration reform maybe in this legislative session even though there is some in the house, republicans are saying they're going to start over again and see if they can get something done on immigration reform. it just seems as though what
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they can do even they have do is get together and agree to defund d.a.c.a. it has been successful and apreachuated by many. what is it exactly that the republican party is going to do on these issues that have a direct impact on 2016. >> jose i appreciate it. coming up next we're going to have a look at what we're told will be the largest scale proposal that the president will be making tonight. we're giving a lot of preview about what he might be talking about tonight. the single largest thing he is going to suggest and why the republicans are howling about it. >> i we are not lull d by the
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momentary calm of the sea or the clear skies above. we know the turbulence that lies below and the storms that are beyond the horizon this year. but now the winds of change appear to be blowing more strongly than ever. in the world of communism as well as our own.
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today, after four years of economic growth corporate professes and stock prices have rarely been higher. those at the top have never done better. by average wages have barely budged. inequality has deepenned. upward mobility has stalled. the cold hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery too many americans are worked too hard just to get by. >> we're just 40 minutes away from the president's sixth
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"state of the union" address. throwing that out in the senate where the time is controlled by the republicans, the bill will be written by them all of the amendment process, and you have menendez who has been a hawk on the chair of the foreign relations committee. how does he prevent it from becoming a hawkish resolution. >> the biggest problem with iron is there is a democratic and republican support. it will completely blow up the talk. so all of those talks, you're absolutely right. the other thing i think will be a credibility problem tonight. they will say he made progress
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against iraq and syria. it is hard to see what the progress has been against isis in syria for sure and in iraq. he will say there is a government in iraq and a more secular government in iraq. a more inclusive government in iraq. but to claim progress against terrorism, with what's happening in yemen today, it is hard. >> is this an attempt to shame the republicans from what looks to be their effort to try to reduce taxes for the wealthy and for corporations. >> it does feel like more of a campaign frame. this is also a sexual issue. yes, there is i think politics behind it. you certainly know where the democrats and president obama
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who has a fairly united party with the idea of using the tax code to fix some of this inequality issue, probably more of a nonstarter than people think. i want to pick up one thing on the war authorization. i think there is real trust between the president and the new chairman of the foreign relations committee bob corker. i think they're more comfortable writing a resolution with bob corker than bob menendez. >> that's right, menendez is more hawkish than the president. >> yes, and bob corker from tennessee, he has been very much somebody that the white house spends a lot of time with. on national security issues he is more helpful behind the scenes. sometimes he is pretty critical. the white house feel he is someone that can work with. they want to rewrite the war
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authorization in general. i think they can work with corker in a way that they think they could not have worked as well with menendez. >> i should mention that we're watching right now, we're told the president is just about to leave. it has been months and months and months, plm halfalmost half a year since the strike in isis and syria. there has been all of this talk about talking about doing a authorization. should we see the fact that this is going to be in the state of the union as an account of furtherance? and something might just happen? >> you know it's funny and by bringing up a authorization, doesn't that lead you to believe that they're concerned that they don't necessarily have
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authorization to do this? maybe the white house is concerned that what they're doing might not past constitutional muster. that said they do believe that the current war authorization from '01 and '02 giving them the legal right. put it this way, we had a close aide of the president say one of the big -- if they know it has been a successful year legislatively if they have a new war authorization. this is a priority for them. >> i should point out that this iron issue is heard. you saw what happened when david cameron, the british prime minister here they lobbied congress lobbying senators not to blow up the iran nuclear
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talks. there has been progress that iran has frozen it's nuclear program and they could then break out as quickly as the talks go. >> thank you for being with us. it is a great night. we'll see you later. >> one of the things that is always good and weird to know about these big nights is who the designated survivor is. they pick one member of the cabinet, hold them away from tonight's speech in a secure undisclosed location in the event that there is a catastrophic attack. tonight the designated survivor is transportation secretary anthony fox. >> we had the energy secretary two years in a row, and i thought what does that mean? >> they could not hold two or
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three of them? >> it seems like a rough job. >> they hold a few people out, and the sergeant at arms keeps it a secret. we have two people that have worked at high levels in presidential campaigns. gentleman, thank you both for being here. >> good to be with you. >> robert i want to go to something that is the scuttlebutt in washington since the election. it's the idea that obama will basically be giving his speech tonight to hillary clinton. that he is trying to set the options for the democratic debates that come after his presidency, is that fair? >> i think there is tonight a battle of ideas that will take
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us all of the way through the 2016 campaign. i think it will be gersing to see tonight if republicans in their response move from criticizing the president to things they would like to do not just because they're in charge but if they controlled off of the government. >> in terms of that republican response tonight steve, i have to put it to you tonight that there are five republican responses planned tonight to the "state of the union." there is the republican response, the spanish language response, the tea party response, the rand paul response, and the ted cruz response. is that a good sign for the
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republican party? >> i don't think it matters much. we're about a year out from the new hampshire primary. there is three proponents to the speech tonight. chief amongst them is tax proposals. this is about starting a political debate. he will use executive orders of the president to announce some policy actions. republicans will disaagree with them but they will be impotent to do anything about them. there is a third important part of the speech which i hope will be the beginning of initiating a debate about the global jihad we're seeing play out across yurt and across the middle east. about america's force in the middle east and in idea and it is time for congress to have this debate. i think the bringing it up
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these are going to be the most important parts of the speech. there will certainly be republican important to work with the president, to work with the administration to develop an effective strategy to deal with what is frankly a monumental problem. >> let me go to robert. you would get confused wondering what happened in the november elections. he is galloping like a horse after getting a victory. tonight is seems like the president has his voice, and i'm yet con jinsed they have a united voice. >> i think for republicans, it may well be until they have a nominee, until they have a truly united voice, and i think that is what happens when you're out of power, i do think that the president is emboldenned. i think he feels like he is on the offensive. there is no longer does he have
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an election looming. does he have to trim his sails. let's be clear, $2.10 gas near where i live is the rising tide that lifts a lot of votes. i think economics -- economic optimism is really the backdrop of the state of the union for the first time since this president was ever sworn in. >> steve, you have to go to the water gate gas station to get gas around $3 any more. someone told me the other day, he feels his tang with $25 and it used to be $60. >> it is a mug issue for middle income folks. there is nothing that affects the pocketbooks of average working americans more than gas and fuel prices. the president is clearly benefitting from this. and if you look at the arch of the president's approval numbers
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from the midterm thumping through today. if you said back in november when we were sitting here that the president's numbers would have recovered to 46 pakistan approval closing in on 50 we would have been astounded by that. >> i like you got that in there like a little gut punch there. a thumping. very well said steve schmidt who is giving us the victory speech for the republicans four months later. when we come back we'll look inside the white house. this is msnbc's coverage of president obama's "state of the union." welcome back to showdown! i'm jerry rice here discussing the upcoming big race between the tortoise and the hare. jerry, the hare always brags about his speed. fine, but he crossed the line when he told... hey, turtle neck. want a head start, how about a week. yeah, my performance does the talking, ok.
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>> this is a very exciting night in politics. you're looking at the chamber there. there are senators starting to alife for tonight's speech. the state of the union comes up in about 25 minutes from now. we got a scoop about the speech tonight. head documented what it is like in the last few hectic and high takes dangers on what will be on
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the page at the teleprompter. >> the west wing is buzzing with last minute reppreparations. >> this is the world series and the super bowl all rolled in one. >> what is your favorite part of working on the text when you're overseeing it, editing, changing it -- >> i think it is fun to meet with the president months before, and download is what he is thinking. >> after labor day is when policy development starts. the director at o.m.b. is in the process.
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>> and he was still meeting with white house aides. >> the two of them had time out there when their head was a little clearer, the air was probably a little nicer. the view was definitely nicer. >> then the draft start flying. >> days start to melt together and drafts melt together and there is a moment of trepidation as you wait to get the president's copy back to see like how far you are from getting it done. >> he will come back from chances. he has extraordinarily neat handwriting. the first time i saw it i thought it was a font. >> how many rewrites have you done so far? >> i have done zero >> half all of the rewrites it is up to the president. >> mr. speaker, the president of the united states! >> that is what we saw friday in the west wing, and rachel you
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notice how long everybody is working. >> this is number six for this president, right? does it get easier for them overtime? or is it the same panic? >> several aides say it is faster and better doing it year after year. the president has a hands on style. sometimes he replies late at night, sometimes it's longhand and they try to keep the speech every year as short as possible. >> it seems to be the piece with your enterprise reporting there is giving people credit. i can't remember anyone getting any credit since kennedy's speech writer. how did you get in that door? >> we wanted to look at the process, and we talked to who we
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could. the other aides did want to put a window on this process, and the eisenhower building they say it is a collaborative process that still has a real writer and author at the helm in president obama. >> that was nice of you to say that because that is what he wants to hear but they have the title speech writer not speech drafter. >> one of the things as you see the president leaving the white house for capitol hill is how long does this speech go tonight? i think his most powerful speeches were shorter and more concise. i think when they edit a long one like this no one wants to fight about the edits. i think the white house want third-degree to be a shorter
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speech, and i think it will be interesting to see if we can capture this tonight. we know the policy. the question is the language the value around economics and opportunity, fairness i think that is what the president and the white house want to come through, and the longer and harder that is to breakthrough. >> the success of the speech is based on how many people watch. they have to consider in the length and content how much they hold people's attention. >> and there is a massive institutional structure. for what your policy area wlb it, whether it gets into the speech how it gets into the feature. there are fights right now and the winner of those fights it will be singular to the american public. it commits this president to the
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white house -- >> when they ask what mess an he wants to emphasize, if it is a shorter speech, he can emphasize and get his message across. the longer you lose the message. we have five g.o.p. responses. we don't want to get in the way of their unity party tonight. >> i think they changed the rules when bill clinton was president. he had long speeches lots of details, and people really liked it. you got into the belly of the beast, good job. now we have ed schultz joining us. >> good evening, good to be with you. >> what's the mood in there among the people all jockeying to get your attention right now? >> there is a tremendous amount of confidence among the democrats tonight.
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they think this will be a great night. the president in a very tactical and graceful manner will take a victory lap. he will remind the country what he inherited and what we have today. the numbers don't lie. you can't get around it. the numbers it hits is it used today be "it's the economy stupid," now it is" it's my paycheck, stupid." there has been a good recovery more jobs. 58 months of private sector job growth. these are things that the republicans can't deny. and jason chavez told me tonight that the pressure is on us. we have to come to the table, we have to come up with proposals and it's on us now. that puts the wind at the president's back tonight. i want to go back if i can about the conversation about security forces agreement, and being able
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to authorize force. the president wants that because he doesn't want to own it. he wants the republicans to weight in on a whole new ball game as they're calling it and make sure that the country knows that this will be a shared effort politically no matter what we do in the middle east. those are big things that will be hit tonight by the president. >> let me ask you something very close. you're watching a trade law. and they're thinking will this be something where the republican side cheers if he says something about trade agreements and the democrats sit on their butts? >> there is a lot of democrats that have angst about the transpacific partnership. the t.p.p. the president wants it he wants to fast track it. the republicans want it. this is a balancing act for the president tonight. he has not talked too much about
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the tpp, the question is will he do it tonight? the very people he impressed by his theme tonight and the wage gap and helping middle class people are the people saying they told the white house look this will kill american jobs. this will depress wages, and this is a balancing act that the president will do tonight and in the coming days. if you had to do rank and file of the democrats, they done want the tpp. >> ed schultz, thank you so much. we're now just minutes away. we saw the president and the first lady leaving the white house. these are live shots from inside the chamber as members of congress, members of the senate and they're guests file in. this will be the president's first speech to a congress under full republican control.
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we're minutes away from president obama's state of the union. we have a historical look at how president obama stacks up against his predecessors at this point in his presidency. >> there is exactly two years left from today in the obama presidency presidency. he has a 46% approval rating. there are other polls out there that show him doing slightly better. let's take a look back. how did the last two years playout. what did it mean for the battle for their successors. this is ronald reagan january 1987. the key here you can see he is not doing too well in terms how we think of ronald reagan. this was the height of the iran scandal that brought ronald reagan's a numbers way down. they stays down through most of
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1987 then ward the end of his presidency, there was a popular reassessment. the key here is that in the fall of 1988 when that campaign for his successor was going on his vice president, george bush senior said i'm the most loyal vice president in history. essentially what people say is he won reagan's third term. reagan recovered and that is something that he would like to mimic. bill clinton was impeached, he got very popular and because the economy was humming along, he stayed popular throughout the rest of his presidency, because of those circumstances, his vice president did not run.
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al gone distanced himself. there was a lot of confusion and mixed feelings that people have and al gore was not able to succeed the president. finally the final model here, you know this one pretty well george w. bush with iraq spiraling out of control, that was a disastrous midterm. it is not something he are covered from. in 2008 the economy collapsed, there was no favorable reassessment, and remember in 2008 john mccain vied to distance himself from george w. bush, but the idea of a clean break was very come belling and very key to barack obama's victory. you look at where he stands now, will it make a continueity message work.
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it is a key pivot point here. please join us tonight, be logged on while you're logging on. check it out, be part of the show tonight. >> that is fascinating, and also, when you apply that to what's going on right now, imagining who among the democratic field might run as a potential obama third term right? who might take a george h.w. bush to succeed him. we're watching members of the supreme court file in to unanimous applause. we're expecting, i think six of the nine supreme court justices to be there tonight. just alido, he made comments in
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2010 when he murmured "not true." hes that not been back to the state of the union since that night. michael, it is great to see you, thank you for being with us. >> my pleasure rachel. >> historically at this point in two-term president's. is there something that we should expect? does it have a type? >> one thing i think we really should expect is let's look at three presidents who were in they're seventh year and had a hostile congress. eisenhower in 59 said work with me to try to improve relations with the soviet union. reagan said this is a rare moment to wind down the cold
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war. bill clinton in '99, even though he was fighting impeachment, he was trying to get a peace deal with israel and the palestinians. they are going to ask for congress to work with him, to try to defeat isis. >> when we look at the prospects for republican cooperation with the president, i should mention we're looking at the first lady there entering to unanimous applause tonight. we expect the president to arrive in the next five minutes or so. when we look at what they might work together on should we want to see anything in the republican responses tonight, or do the republican responses go out into the ether and not have much consequence? >> yes, and when i'm talking about the sweet harm any in the
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reagan time and the clinton time in the issues you didn't see them in the response. the best we can hope for is if president obama works with some republicans on matters of nationalnation nal national security. sometimes that can be expanded into coalitions. >> thank you for being with us. we'll be checking back in with you. we're watching members of the cabinet come in. they were announced as they walk in in group. you see chuck hagel there, the outgoing defense secretary. tom vilsack, the permanent secretary of agriculture now. >> now it gets tricky. >> looking at eric holder, due to be replaced by loretta hagel due
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to be replaced by david asher. one of the things that says that to me is how ash carter and loretta lynch are benefitting from all of this bipartisan praise from senators. eric holder is really hated by the republicans. his successor seems like she is going to sail through. a republican secretary of defense, he may be unanimously confirmed by the senate even after he had a hard time getting confirmed. >> something that has not been mentioned about this administration. this one and the last one, president obama's team has been clean. this is something we only notice when they're not clean. they have not had indictments for corruption they have not been forced to resign. petraeus had the marital thing, but they have not been
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embarrassed. he is clean in his family and his administration has been model in terms of ethics and nobody writes this down. it is something to note in a country that had corruption as a problem in almost every administration i can think of. >> and this that period when there was a succession of revelations when people were talking about scandal, there was the irs story, there was whispers about benghazi that proved to be less than they first appeared. there was a period where it seemed like it was going to define the second term for the obama administration. they basically weathered that right? particularly with independence, all of that scandal mongering that happened particularly in spring of 2013 has not really -- >> this administration did not have a dick cheney or scooter libby operation going on. >> that is what makes your
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point, is that they're not reaching that with successors of two key cabinet members. so it makes us wonder what they expect. they ended up reaching for things that were not there. >> and i think, too, looking past what we're seeing here to former secretary of state hillary clinton, she might be a member of obama's cabinet that is most relevant going forward. it will be interesting how she walks that like for how al gone ran against bill clinton. she will have to find some sort of middle ground. she has to try to appeal to the political base on domestic issues, but republicans will hammer her over and over about over again on what they view as a weak obama foreign policy. >> the most important people in that room right now is probably no senator or member of the
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house, it is anthony kennedy, who will rule on the historic -- right? if there is one, on same-sex marriage this year we will always remember that decision. >> and obama care. >> and possibly on the same day with opposite decisions. >> yeah we don't know where roberts will go. and kennedy is always the fascinating guy because of the lawrence decision. we always want to know if he will keep going in that direction. >> it will be interesting to see if the president saying anything about what he might do if there is a supreme court vacancy. >> i think she is hanging in there. >> they are all wicked old. >> the president may have a chance to nominate a new supreme court justice before the end of his term. i don't think any of us know who he would choose. if he would pick someone who was an existing judge. but the supreme court with those two decisions you just
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described, will be incredibly important in terms of defining what this presidency -- what the legacy is of this president. not just while she still in office and we're looking for a successor, but also in history. it is 9:00 on capitol hill. president obama is about to enter the house of representatives to driver his state of the union address. i'm rachel maddow with chris matthews. what the president calls on congress to do where he challenges them to take action will signal how he intends to spend the final two years of his presidency. this is a huge night for the administration. that's for sure. i think that the president has given us a good preview of what's coming tonight. some spoiler alerts. but he will talk about income inequality tonight and he will be a democrat tonight. this is a political speech you will see tonight, even if he
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can't achieve these goals, she setting them and i think he is setting them for the democrat party for years to come. he wants it known why he want today be president and i think he wants to let everyone know tonight. >> some members of congress are planning to wave in the ware some pencils as a sign of solidarity for the victims in paris, je suis charlie. >> that is the first time they probably had number two pencils in their hands since the s.a.t.s. >> tonight it will be about how members of congress will react. for a few years they did bipartisan dating. >> that doesn't seem to be happening tonight. >> it made it interesting because when people would stand
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up or sit down, they didn't have the comfort of being in a big crowd of people and it really changed the dynamics in the room. since making that gesture, they have since gravitated back to the other sides of the aisle. so you will see just how many republicans there are in that room. >> i just saw al franken, and trading places. he has become a real senator now, second term. there he was with ron wyden. i'm so impressed with his career move. >> one person the first lady has in her box is ana zamora. steve king reminding to her -- >> remind us who steve king is.
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>> he is the most restrictionist immigration hawk. he tweeted that the first lady had a deportable. as a noun. and there was so much talk about the cataclysmic fight, and it looks now like it was a bluff. we'll see if it was a bluff and whether or not they carry through on it. right now, five or six weeks after that speech in which we all thought this would be the cataclysmic fight that would kick off this last two years of presidency, it it doesn't look like they have the stomach for it. >> one thing that is happening tonight that has never happened as far as we know ten minutes in advance of the speech time tonight, the white house released publicly the full text of his remarks to people could follow along at home. they have done that tonight.
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>> there is lots of things to get the speech covered, no doubt about that. i want to talk about something in a chris said. six weeks ago they said if the president does this on immigration, everything is off of the table. nothing will happen. you will hear that every day for the next two years. it does not mean they can't find common ground on certain things. they cannot find agreement whether democrats or the democratic caucus likes it on trade or corporate taxes or on nominees. one of the things truly overblown in washington is when someone makes a proposal in line with their political party, and someone says then we're not going to discuss anything else. >> sergeant at arms is honorable paul d. irving. the president, as usual, will have a hard time getting down
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the aisle. many people heitkampcamp out in the aisle and try to talk to him and kiss him in some situations. we're about to have the announcement i believe from the sergeant at arms. >> this is where photo bombing is born. >> sheila jackson lee must be there somewhere. >> eleanor holmes norton a ceremony congresswoman threw some shade. she said scramble like 5 5-year-olds -- >> if i was a member of congress, i don't care who the president was, i would be scrambling. we all have a finite time on this earth, if this is your job, this is exactly where you want
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to be. >> it's a great time to cross the aisle, especially if you're a republican. you show you respect the president. >> the president of the united states. [ applause ] >> a hand on the shoulder. a kiss. [ applause ] the top leadership of congress immediately behind him. the republican and democratic leadership behind him. [ applause ] here is the thing about being a member of congress. is this your only chance to meet the president? >> yes. >> there is a congressional
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barbecue, but one of the themes of this president and his relation to congress is there is very few relative opportunities for face time with the president. >> one of the top white house photos that were selected by the official white house photographer was one that i love. the caption said something along the lines of president obama is surrounded by house democrats that came to meet with him in the white house. it is ten or 20 of them all surrounding him like he is the popular kid in the playground. they don't have as much chance to interact with him as you would think. >> robert gibbs, inside the obama white house, are deliberate decisions made about those things. >> i think it depends on what the topic and issue is. the committee members, i think a lot goes into that. i think you do have and i think you have seen this over time far fewer leanings with members
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of congress less interaction, and the subtle things. >> in the bush cheney white house, was it similar? >> there was similar criticism. very infrequent contact with members of congress. if you look back at the reagan diaries and you follow his eight years as president, the interaction with congress was constant. it was every day. you look at lyndon johnson, you look at previous presidents of both parties. they dealt with members of congress they were at the white house. they were on the phone, constantly working. you see a departure from that tradition over these last two administrations. >> the president there greeting membership of the supreme court. a big hug as always -- >> i'm watching you. >> she is little and she looks frail. other than being little and looking frail, there is not
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frail about her, she could break you. every time they see each other, it's a big hug like they're related. she knows of what she speaks they're close. >> you mentioned this if there is a supreme court vacancy, and i don't think there will be one, the dynamic would be completely different because of what you said earlier if is the first time the president goes in front of an exclusively republican controlled congress and obviously the house of representatives doesn't have any bearing on a supreme court nominee. it would have to go through a new republican senate. that would change markedly the die dynamics of who the white house could nomination. >> and you would need a filibuster-proof majority.
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>> yeah. >> thank you. >> president obama stepping up to the lecturn now. the biggest night. let's listen. [ applause ] members of congress i have the high privilege and distinct honor of presenting to you the president of the united states. [ applause ] >> thank you so much. thank you. thank you so much. please. mr. speaker, mr. vice president,
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members of congress, my fellow americans. we are 15 years into this new century. 15 years that were dawned with terror touching our shores that unfolded with a new generation fighting two long and costly wars. that saw a vicious recession spread across our nation and the world. it has been and still is a hard time for many. but tonight, we turn the page. tonight, after a breakthrough year for america, our economy is growing and creating jobs at the fastest pace since 1999. [ applause ]
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our unemployment rate is lower than it was before the final crisis. more kids are graduating than ever before. more of our people are insured than ever before. [ applause ] and we are as free from the grip of foreign oil as we have been in almost 30 years. [ applause ] tonight, for the first time since 9/11, our combat mission in afghanistan is over.
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six years ago, nearly 180,000 american troops served in iraq and afghanistan. today, fewer than 15,000 remain. we salute the courage and sacrifice of every man and woman in this 9/11 generation who served to keep us safe we are humbled and grateful for your service. [ applause ] plrz [ applause ] america, for all that we
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have endured, for all of the grit and hard work required to come back. for all of the tasks that lie ahead, know this. the shadow of crisis has passed and the state of the union is strong. [ applause ] at this moment with the growing economy, shrinking deficits bustling industry booming energy production, we have risen from recession and are freer to right our future than any nation on earth. it is now up to us to choose who we want to be over the next 15 years and for decades to come. will we accept an economy are only a few of us do spectacularly well? or will we commit ourselves to
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an economy that generates rising incomes and chances for everyone who makes the effort? [ applause ] will we approach the world fearful and reactive dragged into costly conflicts that strain our military and set back our standing? or will we lead it wisely and protect our planet? will we allow ourselves to be sorted into factions and turned against one another? or will we recapture the sense of common purpose that has always propelled america forward. in two weeks, i will send this congress a budget filled with ideas that are practical, not partisan. in the months ahead i will
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criscocrisc criscross the country. i want to focus more on the values at stake in the choices before us. it begins with our economy. seven years ago, rebekah and ben erler of minneapolis were newlyweds. he waiteding tables he worked construction. they were young and in love in america. it doesn't get much better than that. if only we had known, re bekah wrote to me last spring about what would happen to the housing and construction market. ben took what jobs he could find
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en if they kept him on the road for wrong stretches of time. rebekah took out student loans, enrolled in community college, and trained for a new career. they sacrificed for each other and slowly it paid off. they bought their first home. they had a second son, henry. rebekah got a better job and a raise. ben is back in construction and home for dinner every night. it is amazing rebekah wrote, what you can bounce back from when you have to. we are a strong tight-knit family that made it through some very, very hard times. we are a strong tight-knit family who made it through some very, very hard times. america, rebekah and ben's story is our story.
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they represent the millions who worked hard and sacrificed and retooled. you are the reason that i reason for this office. you are the people i was thinking of six years ago today in the darkest months of the crisis when i stood on the steps of this capitol and promised we would rebuild our economy on a new foundation. it has been your resilience your effort that made it possible for our country to emerge stronger. we believed we could reverse the tide of outsourcing and draw new jobs to our shores. our businesses have created more than 11 million new jobs. [ applause ]
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we believed we could reduce our dependence on foreign oil and protect our planet. and today, america is number one in oil and gas, america is number one in wind power. every three weeks, we bring online as much solar power as we did in all of 2008. thanks to lower gas prices and higher fuel standards, the typical family this year should save about $750 at the bump. save about $750 at the pump. we believed we could prepare our kids for a more competitive world. today our younger students have earned the highest math and reading scores on record. our graduation rate hit an all time high. more americans finished college than ever before.
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>> we believed that federal regulations could prevent another crisis. today we have new tools to stop taxpayer funded bailouts and a new consumer watchdog to protect us from predatory lending. in the past year alone, about 10 million uninsured americans finally got the security of health care coverage. plstz [ applause ] at every step we were told our goals were misguided, or too ambitious. that we would crush jobs and explode deficits. instead we have seen the fastest economic growth in more than a
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decade. a stock market that has doubled and health care and inflation at it's lowest rate in 50 years. [ applause ] this is good news, people. [ laughter ] >> so the verdict is clear. middle class economics works. expanding opportunity works. and these policies will continue to work as long as politics don't get in the way. we can't slow down businesses or put our economy at risk with government shut downs or fiscal show downs. we can't put the security of families at risk by taking away
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their health insurance or unraveling the new rules on wall street or refighting past battles on immigration when we have to fix a broken system. and if a bill comes to my desk that tries to do any of these things, i will veto it. it will have earned by veto. today, the recovery is touching more an more lives. wages are finally starting to rise again. we know that more small business owners plan to raise their employee's pay than in any time since 2007. here is the thing. those of us here tonight, we need to set our sites higher than just making sure government doesn't screw things up. the government doesn't halt the
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progress we're making. we need to do more than just do no harm. tonight, together let's do more to restore the link between hard work and growing opportunity for every american. [ applause ] because families like rebekah's still need our help. she and ben are working as hard as ever. they had to forego have indications and a new car so they can pay off student loans and save for retirement. friday night pizza, that's a big splurge. basic child care cost more than their mortgage and almost the
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same as a year at the university of minnesota. rebekah is not asking for a handout, but she is asking that we look for more ways to help families get ahead. in fact at every moment of economic change throughout our history, this country has taken bold action to adapt to new circumstances. and to make sure that everyone gets a fair shot. we set up worker protections, social security medicaid medicare to protect ourselves from the harshest adversity. we give our citizens schools, colleges infrastructure internet. the tools to let their dreams take them as far as they can. the idea that this country does best when everyone gets their fair shot, everyone does their fair share. everyone plays by the same set of rules.
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[ applause ] we don't just want everyone to share in america's success, we want everyone to contribute to our success. [ applause ] >> so what does middle class economics require in our time? first, middle class economics means helping working families feel more secure in a world of constant change. that means helping folks afford child care college, health care a home retirement. my budget will address each of these issues lowering the taxes of working families and putting thousands of dollars back into their pockets each year. here is one example. during world war ii when men
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like my father went off to war, having women like my mother in the workforce was a national security priority. this country provided universal child care. in today's economy, when having both parents in the work force is an economic necessity for most families, we need affordable child care more than ever. [ applause ] it's not a "nice to have." it's a "must have." so it is time that we stop treating child care as a side issue. or as a women's issue. and treat it like the national economic priority that it is for all of us.
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and that is why my plan will make quality child care more available and more affordable for every middle class and low income family for every family in america. creating new slots and a tax cut up to $3,000 per child per year. [ applause ] >> here is another example, today we are the only advanced country on earth that does not guarantee paid sick leave or paid maternity leave to our workers. 43 million workers have no paid sick leave. 43 million. think about that. and that forces too many parents to make the gut wrenching choice between a paycheck and a sick kid at home. i will take actions to help states adopt paid leaves on
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their own, where it was on the ballot last november let's put it to a vote right here in washington. send me a bill that gives every worker in america to be able to earn seven days of paid sick leave. it's the right thing to do. [ applause ] of course nothing helps families make ends meet like higher wages. that's why this congress still needs to pass a law to make sure that a woman is paid the same as a man for doing the same work. [ applause ] it is 2015. it is time. we still need to make sure employees get the overtime they
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earned. and everyone in this congress who still refuses to raise the minimum wage i say this: if you truly believe you can work full time and support a family on less than $15,000 a year try it. if not, vote to give millions of honest hard working americans a raise. these ideas will not make everybody rich. they won't relieve every hardship. that is not the job of government. to give working families a fair shot we still need more employers to see beyond next quarter's earnings and realize that investing in their workforce is in their company's long-term interest. we still need laws that strengthen rather than weaken
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unions and give american workers a voice. but you know -- [ applause ] things like child care and sick leave and equal pay, things like hour mortgage premiums and a higher minimum wage. these ideas will make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of families. that is a fact. that is what all of us republicans and democrats alike were sent here to do. >> second to make sure that folks keep earning higher wages down the road. we have to do more to help the americans upgrade their skills. america thrived in the 20th century because high school was
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free. sent g.i.'s to college, create the best workforce in the world. we were ahead of the curve. but other countries caught on. and in a 21st century economy that rewards knowledge like never before we need to up our game and we need to do more. by the end of this decade two in three job openings will require some higher education. we still live in a country where too many bright striving americans are priced out of the education they need. it is not fair to them and it is not smart for our future. that is why i'm sending this congress a bold new plan to lower the cost of community college to zero. [ applause ] keep in mind 40% of our
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college students choose community college. some are young and starting out. some are older and looking for a better job. some are veterans and single parents trying to transition back into the job market. however you are, this plan is your chance to graduate ready for the new economy without a load of debt. understand you have to earn it. you have to keep your grades up and graduate on time. tennessee, a state with republican leadership and chicago, the city with democratic leadership, are showing that free community college is possible. i want to spread that idea across america so that two years of college becomes as free and universal in america as high school is today. [ applause ] let's stay ahead of the curve.
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[ applause ] >> and, i want to work with this congress to make sure those already burdened with student loans can lower their payments. thanks to vice president biden's great work to update our job training system we're connecting community colleges with local employers to train workers to fill high paying jobs like coding, are nursing, robotics. i'm also asking businesses like cvs and ups to offer paid apprenticeships. give workers an opportunity to earn higher paying jobs even if they don't have a higher education. and as a new generation of veterans comes home we owe them every opportunity to live the american dream they helped defend. we made strides towards ensuring
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that every veteran has the access to the highest quality care. we're slashing the backlog that had too many veterans who had to wait too long to get the care they needed. and joining forces, the fashional campaign launched by michelle and jill biden, thank you michelle, thank you jill has helped nearly 700,000 veterans and military spouses get a new job. [ applause ] so every ceo in america. let me repeat, if you want someone that will get the job done and get the job done right, hire a veteran. [ applause ]
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finally, as we better train our workers, we need the new economy to churn up high wage jobs for our workers to fill. since 2010 america has put more people back to work than europe japan, and all advanced economies combined. [ applause ] our manufacturers added almost 800,000 new jobs. bedrock sectors like our auto industry are booming. there are millions of americans that work in job that's did not exist ten years ago. jobs like google and ebay and tesla. we know we want the knew job
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that's are coming here in america. we know that. [ applause ] and that is why the third part of middle class economics is about building the most competitive economy anywhere. the place where businesses want to locate and hire. 21st century businesses need 21st century structure. ports, faster trains and the fastest internet. democrats and republicans used to agree on this. so let's set our sites higher than a single oil pipeline let's pass a bipartisan structure plan that can create more jobs per year and make this country stronger for decades to come. let's do it and get it done. [ applause ]
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>> 21st century businesses including small businesses need to sell more american products overseas. today, our businesses export more than ever. and exporters tend to pay their workers higher wages. as we speak, china wants to write the rules for the world's fastest growing region. that puts our workers and businesses at a disadvantage. why would we let that happen? we should write those rules. we should level the playing field. that's why i'm asking both parties to give me trade promotion authority to protect american workers with strong new trade deals from asia to europe that are not just free but are also fair. that's the right thing to do. [ applause ]
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>> look i'm the first one to admit -- i'm the first one to admit that past trade deals have not always lived up to the hype. that's why we have gone after countries that break the rules at our expense. but 95% of the world's customers live outside of our borders. we can't close ourselves off from those opportunities. more than half of manufacturing executives say they're actively looking to bring jobs back from china, so let's give them one more reason to get it done. 21st century businesses will align on american science and technology research and development. i want the country that eliminated polio and mapped the human human genome to deliver the
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right medicine at the right time. and some patients with cystic fibrosis, this has reversesd a disease once thought unstoppable. i'm launching a new initiative to help us cure cancer and diabetes, and help us get access to the information we need to keep ourselves and our families healthier. we can do this. [ applause ] i intend to protect a free and hope internet that can reach every classroom and every community, and help folks build the fastest networks so the next generation of innovators have the platform to keep shaping or would. i want americans to race for the kinds of discoveries that create
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new jobs. makes sunlight into liquid fuel. making prosthetics so a veteran can play catch with his kids again. pushing out into the solar system not just to visit, but to stay. last month we launched a new spacecraft as part of a reenergized space program that will bridge american astronauts to mars. scott kelly is going to begin a year long stay in space. congratulations, captain, make sure you instagram it. we're proud of you. [ applause ] now the truth is when it
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comes to issues like infrastructure and basic research i know there is bipartisan support in this chamber. members of both parties have told me so. where we too often run on to the rocks is how to pay for these investments investments. as americans we don't mind paying our fair share of taxes as long as everyone else does too. for far too long, lobbiests have rigged the tax code that let some corporations pay nothing and others pay full freight. they have give aways that the super rich don't need and denying a break to middle class families who do. this year we have an opportunity to change that. let's close loopholes so we stop rewarding companies that keep profits abroad and reward those that invest here in america. [ applause ]
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lest use those savings to rebuild our infrastructure and make it more attractive for companies to bring jobs home. let's simplify the system and let a business owner file based on her actual bank statement instead of the number of accountants she can afford. let's close the loopholes that lead to inequality by allowing the top 1% to not pay taxes on their accumulated wealth. we can use that to help families afford child care and go to college. we can use it to get a new leg up in the economy and we can achieve that together. [ applause ] helping hard working
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families make ends meet giving them the tools they need for good paying jobs in this new economy. maintaining the conditions of growth and competitiveness. this is where america needs to go. i believe it is where the american people want to go. they will make our economy stronger a year from now, 15 years from now, and deep into the century ahead. of course if there is one thing this new century has taught us it's that we cannot separate our work here at home from challenges beyond our shores. my first duty as commander and chief is to defend the united states of america. in doing so the question is not whether america leads in the world, but how. when we make rash decisions, reacting to the headlines.
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the first response to a challenge is to send in our military, we risk getting drawn into unnecessary conflicts. that's what our enemies want us to do. i believe in a smarter kind of american leadership. we lead best when we combine military power with strong diplomacy. when we leverage our power with coalition. when we don't let our fears blind us to the opportunity that this new century presents. that is what we're doing right now and around the globe it is making a difference. first, we stand united with people around the world who have been targeted by terrorists from a school in pakistan to the streets of paris. we will continue to hunt down terrorists and dismantle their networks and we have the right
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to act unilaterally. we will takous terrorists because of direct threats to us and our allies. [ applause ] at the same time we learned some costly lessons over the last 13 years. instead of americans patrolling the valleys of afghanistan. we honor our troop sacrifice by supporting the first democratic transition. instead of sending forces overseas, we're partnering with nations to deny safe haven to terrorists that threaten america. in iraq and syria, american leadership including our military power, is stopping isil's advance. instead of being dragged into
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another ground war, we're in a broad coalition to degrade and destroy this terrorist group. [ applause ] we're also supporting a moderate opposition in syria that can help us in this effort and assisting people everywhere that stand up to the bankrupt ideology of violent extremism. this effort will take time. it will require focus. but we will succeed. and tonight, i call on this congress to show the world that we are united in this mission by passing a resolution to authorize the use of force against isil. we need that authority. [ applause ] second we're demonstrating the power of america's strength and diplomacy. we're upholding the principal that bigger nations can't bully the small by opposing russian
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aggression and supporting and assuring our nato allies. [ applause ] last year as we were doing the hard work of imposing sanctions along with our allies as we were reinforcing our presence with the frontline states, mr. putin's aggression was suggested as a masterful display of strength. today it is america that stands strong and united with our allies while russia is isolated with it's economy in tatters. that is how america leads. not with bluster, but with consistent, steady resolve. [ applause ]
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you know in cuba we're ending a policy that was long past it's expiration date. [ applause ] when what you're doing doesn't work for 50 years it is time to try something new. [ applause ] and our shift in cuba policy has the potential to end a legacy of mistrust in our hemisphere, and removes a phoney excuse for restrictions in cuba. stands up for democratic values and extends the hands. america should work on ending the embargo as -- for france's
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sake. diplomacy is the work of small steps. these small steps added up to new hope for the future in cuba. after years in prison we are overjoyed that alan gross is back where he belongs. become home alan. we're glad you're here. [ applause ] our diplomacy with respect to iran where for the first time in a decade we halted the progress of it's nuclear program and reduced it's stockpile of nuclear material. between now and this spring we have a chance to negotiate a comprehensive agreement that prevents a nuclear armed iran.
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and it avoids another middle east conflict. there are no guarantees thatavoiding yet another middle east conflict. there are no guaranties negotiations will succeed and i keep all options on the table to prevent a nuclear iran. but new sanctions passed by this congress at this moment in time will all but guaranty diplomacy fails. alienating america from its allies. making it harder to maintain sanctions and ensuring that iran starts up its nuclear program again. it doesn't make sense. that's why i will veto any sanctions bill that threatens to undo this progress. [ applause ] the american people expect us only to go to war as a last resort. and i intend to stay true to that wisdom.
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third, we're looking beyond the issues that have consumed us in the past to shape the coming century. no foreign nation, no hacker should be able to steal our trade secrets or invade the privacy of american families, especially our kids. [ applause ] so we're making sure our government integrates intelligence to combat cyber threats just as we've done to combat terrorism. tonight i urge this congress to finally pass the legislation we need to better meet the evolving threat of cyber attacks and protect our children's information. that should be a bipartisan effort. [ applause ]
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if we don't act, we leave our nation and our economy vulnerable. if we do we can continue to protect the technologies that have unleashed untold opportunities for people around the globe. in west africa our troops, our scientists, our doctors, our nurses our health care workers are rolling back ebola, saving countless lives and stopping the spread of disease. i could not be prouder of them. i thank this congress for your bipartisan support of their efforts. but the job is not yet done and the world needs to lose this lesson to build a more effective global effort to prevent the spread of future pandemics, invest in smart development and eradicate extreme poverty. in the asia pacific, we are modernizing alliances while
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making sure other nations play by the rules in how they trade, how they resolve maritime disputes. how they participate in meeting common international challenges like nonproliferation in disaster relief. and no challenge no challenge poses a greater threat to future generations than climate change. [ applause ] 2014 was the planet's warmest year on record. one year doesn't make a trend, but this does. 14 of the 15 warmest years on record have all fallen in the first 15 years of this century. i've heard some folks try to dodge the evidence by saying they're not scientists and we
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don't have enough information to act. well, i'm not a scientist either. but you know what? i know a lot of really good scientists at nasa and at noaa and our major universities and they're all telling us that our activities are changing the climate. and if we don't act forcefully we'll continue to see rising oceans longer hotter heat waves, dangerous droughts and floods. and massive disruptions that can trigger greater migration and conflict and hunger around the globe. the pentagon says that climate change poses immediate risk to our national security. we should act like it. and that's why -- [ applause ] that's why over the past six years, we've done more than ever to combat climate change from the way we produce energy to the way we use it.
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that's why we've set aside more public lands and wanters than any administration in history and why i will not let this history endanger of our children by turning back the clock on our efforts. i am determined to make sure that american leadership drives international action. in beijing, we made a historic announcement. the united states will double the pace which we emit carbon pollutions and because the world's two largest economies came together, other nations are now stepping up and offering hope that this year the world will finally reach an agreement to protect the one planet we've got. and there's one last thing of
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our leadership and that's the example of our values. as americans we respect human dignity, even when we're threatened. which is why i have prohibited torture and worked to make sure our use of new technology like drones is properly constrained. [ applause ] it's why we speak out against the anti-semitism that's resurfaced in certain parts of the world. it's why we continue to object offensive stereotypes of muslims, the vast majority of whom share our commitment to peace. that's why we defend free speech and advocate for political prisoners, or people that are gay, transsexual or transgender. we do these things not only because they're the right things to do, but ultimately they will
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make us safer. [ applause ] as americans, we have a profound commitment to justice. so it makes no sense to spend $3 million per prisoner to keep open a prison that the world condemns and terrorists use to recruit. since i've been president, we've worked responsibly to cut the population of gitmo in half. now it's time to finish the job, and i will not relent in my determination to jut it down. it is not who we are. it's time to close gitmo. [ applause ] as americans, we cherish our civil liberties. and we need to uphold that commitment if we want maximum cooperation from other countries and industry in our fight
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against terrorist networks. while some have moved on from debates over our surveillance programs, i have not. as promised our intelligence agencies have worked hard with the recommendation of privacy advocates to increase transparency and build more safe guards against potential abuse. next month we'll issue a report on how we're keeping our promise to keep our country safe. making sure we match our power with diplomacy and use force wisely. building coalitions to meet new challenges and opportunities. leading always with the example of our values. that's what makes us exceptional. that's what keeps us strong. that's why we have to keep striving to hold ourselves to the highest of standards. our own.
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you know just over a decade ago, i gave a speech in boston where i said there was no liberal america or conservative america, or black america nor white america, but a united states of america. i said this because i've seen it in my own life. in a nation that gave someone like me a chance. was i grew up in hawaii the melting pot of races and customs, because i made illinois my home. the state of small towns, rich farmland, one of the world's great cities. a microcosm of the country where democrats and republicans and independents good people of every ethnicity and every faith, share certain bedrock values. over the past six years the
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pundits have pointed out more than once that my presidency hasn't delivered on this vision. how ironic they say, that our politics seems more divided than ever. it's held up as proof, not just of my own flaws, of which there are many, but also as proof that division itself is misguided, naive. that there are too many people in this town who actually benefit from partisanship and gridlock for us to ever do anything about it. i know how tempting such cynicism may be but i still think the cynics are wrong. i still believe that we are one people. i still believe that together we can do great things, even when the odds are long. [ applause ]
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i believe this because over and over in my six years in office i have seen america at its best. i've seen the hope of faces of young graduates from new york to california, our newest officers at west point, annapolis, colorado springs, new london. i've mourned with grieving families in tucson and newtown, and boston west texas, and west virginia. i've watched americans beat back adversity from the gulf coast to the great plains from midwest assembly lines to mid-atlantic seaboard. i've seen something like gay marriage go from a wedge issue used to drive us apart to a story of freedom. [ applause ]
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so i know the good and optimistic and big hearted generosity of the american people who, every day, live the idea that we are our brother's keeper and our sister's keeper. and i know they expect those of us who serve here to set a better example. so the question for those of us here tonight is how we all of us, can better reflect america's hopes. i've served in congress with many of you. i know many of you well. there are a lot of good people here on both sides of the aisle. many of you have told me that this isn't what you signed up for. arguing past each other on cable
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shows, the constant fund-raising, always looking over your shoulder and how the base will react to every decision. imagine if we broke out of these tired old patterns. imagine if we did something different. understand a better politics isn't one where politics abandon their agenda or republicans embrace mine. a better politics is one where we appeal to each over's basic decency instead of our base fears. a better politics is one what we debate without demonizing each other. where we talk issues and values and principals and facts, rather than gotcha moments or fake controversies that have nothing to do with people's daily lives. [ applause ] a politics -- a better politics
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is one where we spend less time drowning money into ads that pull us into the gutter instead lifting young people up with a sense of purpose and possibility. asking them to join in the great mission of building america. if we're going to have arguments, let's have arguments. but let's make the debates worthy of this body and worthy of this country. we still may not agree on a woman's right to choose but surely we can agree that it's a good thing that teen preg -- pregnancies and abortion are nearing all-time lows. [ applause ]
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surely we can all see something of ourselves in the striving young student and agree that no one benefits when a hard-working mom is snatched from her child. and that it's possible to shape a law that upholds our tradition as a nation of laws and nation of immigrants. i've talked to republicans and democrats about that. it's something that we can share. we may go at it in campaign season, but surely we can agree that the right to vote is sacred. that is being denied to too many. and on this 50th anniversary of selma and the passage of the voting rights act, we can come together, democrats and republicans, to make voting easier for every single american. we may have different takes on the events of ferguson and new york.
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but surely we can understand a father who fears his son can't walk home without being harassed. surely we can understand a wife that won't rest until the police officer she married walks through the front door of his shift. surely we can agree that for the first time in 40 years, the crime rate and incarceration rate have come down together. and use that as a starting point for democrats and republicans, community leaders and law enforcement, to reform america's criminal justice system so that it protects and serves all of us. [ applause ] that's a better politics. that's how we start rebuilding trust. that's how we move this country
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forward. that's what the american people want. that's what they deserve. i have no more campaigns to run. [ applause ] i know, because i won both of them. [ applause ] [ laughter ] my only agenda for the next two years is the same as the one i've had since the day i swore an oath on the steps of this capital, to do what i believe is best for america. if you share the broad vision i outlined tonight, i ask you to join me in the work at hand.
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if you disagree with parts of it, i hope you'll at least work with me with where you do agree. i commit to every republican here tonight that i will not only seek out your ideas, i will seek to work with you to make this country stronger. [ applause ] because i want this chamber, i want this city to reflect the truth that for all our blind spots and shortcomings we are a people with the strength and generosity and spirit to bridge divides, to unite in common effort, to help our neighbors, whether down the street or on the other side of the world. i want our actions to tell every child in every neighborhood, your life matters. and we are committed to improving your life chances, as
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committed as we are -- i want the generations to know that we are a people who see our differences as a great gift that we are a people who value the dignity and worth of every citizen. man and woman, young and old, black and white, latino asian, immigrants native immigrants gays straights. americans with mental illness or physical disability. everybody matters. i want them to grow up in a country that shows the world what we still know to be true. that we are still more than a collection of red states and blue states. that we are the united states of america. [ applause ] i want them to grow up in a
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country where a young mom can sit down and write a let tore a president with a story that sums up these past six years. it's amazing what you can bounce back from when you have to. we are a strong tight knit family who's made it through some very very hard times. my fellow americans, we too are a strong, tight-nit family. we too have made it through some hard times. 15 years into this new century, we are picked ourselves up, dusted ourselves off and begun again the work of remaking america. we have laid a new foundation a righter future is ours to write. let's begin this new chapter together and let's start the work right now. thank you. god bless you. god bless this country we love. thank you. [ applause ]
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>> president obama in his sixth state of the union. he spoke a great deal tonight about values. he told the personal story of a young couple who had been hard hit by the financial crisis and managed through hard work and dedication to bounce back. he said you are the reason i ran for this office. this was a segue to another coined phrase here that the president called middle class economics. an obvious play on the trick of that economics, the phase democrats have placed on republican economics. he singled out child tax cuts of $3,000 per child. mandated paid leave for new parents and also for sick leave. and free tuition for community college. he called for tax reform that
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closes loopholes and went after the top 1% saying raising their taxes will finance the middle class child credit. on terrorism, the president said we reserve the right to act unilaterally and asked for use of force authorization from congress to fight isis. he promoted his new opening to cuba quoting the pope in support of it. he had alan gross take a stand tonight, take a bow. and on iran he said new sangions passed by this congress will destroy any chance for success in keeping iran for building nuclear weapons. he then did a lightning round of commitments, calling for action on climate change to protect what he called the only planet we have. he side that he prohibited torture in his administration and restrained his use of drones. he spoke to his opposition to anti-semitism but opposed any ridicule of islam. he said he wanted to close gitmo, as well. he attacked the cynics who
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knocked his hope to end racial division in the country and the partisan gridlock in washington. he spoke defiantly against those who refuse to join him in hopes for america. it was clearly a speech about values and what he believes. >> i think that's exactly right. the long focus at the beginning on -- when he called middle class economics, usually presidents save the personal story of a family that's had a hard time to the end. but this time the president put it up front. it seemed to me that the heart of the speech was something that i think he was addressing to people who voted for him, to people who are democratic minded, people who believed in him. he talked about the speech that made him a national figure in 2004, just over a decade he said i gave a speech in boston where there wasn't a liberal america or conservative america, but the united states of america.
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he said of the past six years, pundits pointed out that my presidency hasn't delivered on this vision. and then he essentially took on that criticism right in the face. he said i know how tempting that cynicism may be. i still think the cynics are wrong and he defended that vision over again, saying he had not only lived it but seen it as president. so for people who voted for him and thought his presidency would and could be a transformative thing, that is the question about his presidency whether he was able to bring us to a transformative moment in our politics. and by knowing that's how people see him and taking it on -- >> excuse me i think he made a mistake about cable television. there are a lot of people who hoped and in fact share his hope with regard to the end of racial
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division and the need for -- the continuing hope for that aspiration and not all benefited from it. and also about bipartisanship, i think a lot of us believe we have to work together better and he and his republican opponents have to cut deals. i don't think it's fair to say everybody benefits from division. i don't think he watches much cable television, that's his call. >> according to what cable you're talking about. first of all, i think he did try to go back to how we first met him in the 2004 race. and i think it was very wise for him to take on directly the accusations that we are not a united america. but i think he very smartly said there is some common ground. can't we still try to understand certain things that we can agree on. we may look at things
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differently. he mentioned ferguson and new york in terms of race but he talked about the cop's wife who wants her husband to come home. he talked about common ground in terms of women's rights and saying we can all agree on women's health care. so i think he did reach back if the context of yes, we do have divisions, but even out of those divisions, can we seek this common ground? >> he had a lot of for lack of a better word swag. he seemed to be enjoying himself. i have no more campaigns left to run, i know, because i won both of them.
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incredibly uncowed. >> he went so far as to repeat the line we are still more than a collection of red states and blue states we are the united states of america. that line from the 2004 speech that we all remember. but at the same time this is a president who has, in fact relished the practise of politics over the last eight years. i think that this particular moment is you know, it lends itself back into this figure who is more than just a politician, because he's no longer the guy who has to run another election. >> robert you said at least in the last few weeks the white house was aiming to a shorter speech. this was the shortest state of the union he's ever given. what did you make of his performance? >> three things struck me. the first was just how much an
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advantage this president really any president has on a night like this to be able to fully set the agenda to do it with strength and resolve. i was struck in the beginning of the speech when he said he wanted to focus less on a checklist and focus more on the values at stake and the choice before us which really laid out again, not just making community college free but why opportunity was important. not about closing tax loopholes and why fairness matters in our economy. and lastly maybe because i'm a little partial to it i worked for a guy who was a state senator, barack obama, when he gave that speech in boston. i love that he came back to that part of his introduction to america. i don't know that we're going to change our politics over the next two years. i still know that that speech is the promise how great this
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country can be that we can put aside some of those differences and work together for the common good. >> i think that speech is so important, rachel. he's our first black president this is going to happen because i thought it was a uniting speech. >> i remember playing that speech on my radio show the next morning, having to get up and walk around the studio to recalibrate my thinking about democratic politics. >> i think he's more powerful tonight because you have to remember, when we saw him say in 2004 here's a man who had been battered and bruised and he's still saying we should unite. so it gives him new power for a person that has taken his fair shots but saying i still believe what i said in 2004, that we can be bigger than that.
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>> what did you think about the speech tonight? >> very good speech. we've all known that president obama is a powerful orator. you consider the collapse of trust in so many of our institutions, so many americans believe the country is on the wrong track, it was a significant effort to convey optimism to the country. taking place under the capitol dome, where maybe the greatest act of optimism in the country, that that dome be completed during the civil war. there were issues for the republicans and democrats to work with the president on. anybody who travels globally comes back into this country sees the disrepair of our infrastructure or airports or ports, our broad band. we need to make significant investments into those places and republicans would be wise to
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embrace some of these programs particularly when he talked about science and technology investment. i was particularly struck by one aspect of the speech where he said in iraq and syria, american leadership is stopping isil's advance. simply not true. an important paragraph, as he talks to the american people about the mentions of the global threat, this was happy talk. this was not attached to reality and the american people and westerners have to understand the dimensions of the threat we're facing and the president would be better served communicating to the american people the magnitude of the challenge that the country is facing as we look at this threat of extremism. >> do you think the republicans will back the republican's call for use of force against isil?
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>> i think that republicans will back the president's use of force. the use of force resolution is long overdue. congress can't have it both ways on this. the entire country has to send a message to the world about where we are coming from on this. we were not engaged in a war against isil on behalf of the democratic party or the republican party. they are attacking us as americans. we are attacking our values our liberties, our western values. i wish there were some paragraphs in the speech where he more dynamically defended the privacy of western values speech, liberty, all the values that we saw under assault in france. >> he did go there. >> he did go there, but he did not go there -- he talked about isis twice in the speech. he talked about child care seven times. i'm not saying that child care is not an important issue, but it is not an issue of the magnitude of importance that the
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isis issue and the challenges we face -- >> i'm not sure the american people need to be lobbied on the importance of isis. what's going to be fascinating is whether or not we have a solid debate about our military action in iraq and syria and the threat of isis. that connection is not self-evident. whether what happened in france what may have almost happened in belgium, what could potentially happen here the relationship between the threat that isis poses to the west and the way they're being attacked with these air strikes, that is not self-evident and that's why we need a good debate. that's why everybody is hoping that debate is joined on both sides so at least it's a really good fight. >> a debate and discussion of strategy about it. king abdullah came to washington saying we need a political, military and idealogical strategy to deal with this. when you look at wartime communications maybe none
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better than churchill's speech to the english people it involves a reckoning of reality, where a great leader talks to the american people honestly about what the country faces and i think he fell short. >> and precisely on that score, the reality is we face nothing on the scope of world war ii. we face nothing on the threat of the size of the nazis or even the soviet empire. to me this was a very strategic choice taken by this administration, the rhetoric with how they deal with what used to be called the global war on terror which is not to give it the kind of time it gets in cable news and in the press to not allow isis with slickly produced videos of murder of the most atrocious kind that are designed to provoke the u.s. into overreaction to allow them to dictate the scope and size of the threat we face. they want us to believe, to
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announce to the world that they are world actors on the scope on the kinds of level of the nazis in the past. >> at the same time we have five months of military action we have thousands of american families who have their family members serving overseas. we are fighting a war, and there's been no democratic decision about it in our government. >> you were talking about how this debate is going to take shape. i think it's going to be interesting to watch how it plays out within the republican party. if you look at the way that rand paul in particular has approached these issues somebody who is very much apoped to actions in the middle east i think where he sets himself up versus john mccain and lindsey graham, i think that's going to be very significant in 2016. >> republican senator joni ernst is just about to give the official republican response to the state of union. we're expecting five republican responses tonight. the official response, the
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spanish response a tea party republican response a rand paul republican response and a ted cruz republican response. five different republican responses from the opposing party tonight. if nothing else is going to make you feel important, that night. here now is the main one, the official english language one from senator joni ernst. >> good evening. i'm joni ernst. as a mother a soldier, and a newly elected senator from the great state of iowa i am proud to speak with you tonight. a few moments ago, we heard the president lay out his vision for the year to come. even if we may not always agree, it's important to hear different points of view in this great country. we appreciate the president sharing his. tonight, though rather than respond to a speech i would like to talk about your
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priorities. i would like to have a conversation about the new republican congress you just elected, and how we plan to make washington focus on your concerns again. we heard the message you sent in november, loud and clear. and now we're getting to work to change the direction washington has been taking our country. the new republican congress also understands how difficult these past six years have been. from many of us, the economy and the frustration with washington's dysfunction, we felt them every day. we felt them in red oak, the little town in southwest iowa where i grew up and still proud to call home today. as a young girl, i plowed the fields of our family farm. i worked construction with my
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dad. to save for college, i worked the morning biscuit line at hardy's. we were raised to live simply not to waste. it was a lesson my mother taught me every rainy morning. you see, growing up i had only one good pair of shoes, so on rainy school days my mom would slip plastic bread bags over them to keep them dry. but i was never embarrassed, because the school bus would be filled with rows and rows of young iowans with bread bags slipped over their feet. our parents may not have had much but they worked hard for what they did have. these days though many families feel like they're working harder and harder with less and less to show for it. not just in red oak, but across the country. we see our neighbors agonized
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over stagnant wages and lost jobs. we see the hurt caused by canceled health care plans and higher insurance bills. we see too many moms and dads put their own dreams on hold while growing more fearful about the kind of future that they'll be able to leave to their children. americans have been hurting, but when we demand its solutions, too often washington responded with the same stale mindset that led to failed policies like obamacare. it's a mindset that gave us political talking points not serious solutions. that's why the new republican majority you elected started by reforming congress to make it function again. and now we're working hard to pass the kind of serious job creation ideas you deserve. one you probably heard about is
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the keystone jobs bill. president obama has been delaying this bipartisan infrastructure project for years. even though many members of his party, unions and a strong majority of americans support. the president's own state department has said keystone's construction could support thousands of jobs and pump billions into our economy and do it with minimal environmental impact. we worked with democrats to pass this bill through the house. we're doing the same now in the senate. president obama will soon have a decision to make. will he sign the bill or block good american jobs? that's a lot we can achieve if we work together. let's tear down trade barriers in places like europe and the pacific. let's sell more of what we make
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and grow in america over there so we can boost manufacturing wages and jobs right here at home. let's simplify america's outdated and loophole ridden tax code. republicans think tax filing should be easier for you, not just the well connected. so let's iron out loopholes to lower rates and create jobs not pay for more government spending. the president has already expressed some support for these kinds of ideas. we're calling on him now to cooperate to pass them. you'll see a lot of serious work in this new congress. some of it will occur where i stand tonight, in the armed services committee room. this is where i'll join committee colleagues republicans and democrats, to discuss ways to support our
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exceptional military and its mission. this is where we'll debate strategies to confront terrorism and a threat posed by al qaeda, isil, and those radicalized by them. we know threats like these can't just be wished away. we've been reminded of terrorism's reach, both at home and abroad. most recently in france and nigeria, but also if places like canada and australia. our hearts go out to all the innocent victims of terrorism, and their loved ones. we can only imagine the depth of their grief. for two decades, i have proudly worn our nation's uniform. today, as a lieutenant colonel in the iowa army national guard, while deployed overseas with some of america's finest men and women, i've seen just how dangerous these kinds of threats
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can be. the forces of violence and oppression don't care about the innocent. we need a comprehensive plan to defeat them. we must also honor america's veterans. these men and women have sacrificed so much in defense of our freedoms and our way of life. they deserve nothing less than the benefits they were promised and a quality of care we can all be proud of. these are important issues the new congress plans to address. we'll continue to keep fighting to repeal and place a health care law that's hurt so many hardworking families. we'll work to correct executive overreach. we'll propose ideas that aim to cut wasteful spending and balance the budget with meaningful reforms, not higher
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taxes like the president proposed. we'll advance solutions to prevent the kind of cyber attacks we've seen recently. we'll work to confront iran's nuclear ambitions, and we'll defend life because protecting our most vulnerable is an important measure of any society. congress is back to work on your behalf ready to make washington focus on your concerns again. we know america faces big challenges, but history has shown there's nothing our nation and our people can't accomplish. just look at my parents and grandparents. they had very little to call their own, except the sweat on their brow and the dirt on their hands. but they worked. they sacrificed. and they dreamed big dreams for their children and grandchildren.
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and because they did, an ordinary iowaen like me has had some truly extraordinary opportunities. because they showed me that you don't need to come from wealth or privilege to make a difference. you just need the freedom to dream big and a whole lot of hard work. the new republican congress you elected is working to make washington understand that, too. and with a little cooperation from the president, we can get washington working again. thank you for allowing me to speak with you tonight. may god bless this great country of ours. the brave americans serving in uniform on our behalf. and you, the hard-working men and women who make the united states of america the greatest nation the world has ever known. >> that's the official
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republican response from newly elected iowa republican senator joni ernst. it is a hard thing to do to respond to the state of the union. previous picks by the republican party during the obama era have been -- it's a hard thing to do. we've gone from bobby jindal to -- >> you're being nice. >> there was a time they let mitch daniels do it and he did it from a bat cave. but this one tonight from joni ernst, very earnest, very folksy. >> better than jindal's. >> yes. no awkward walk down a long staircase. >> senator, thank you. the focus of that speech was about one thing, keystone. obviously she thinks that's one place they'll get a majority vote in the senate.
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where are you on keystone? >> i've always supported keystone it's just a matter how to move the oil safely in a way that has the least impact on the environment. barges and trains and trucks are a much more dangerous way to move it. but i thought the line that the president had in his speech tonight was so good. we can do better than one pipeline when it comes to our infrastructure. he hit that point very hard. it's some place we can find agreement, and that is dealing with the fact that we are being far outpaced by developed nations in terms of our investment infrastructure. and our children and grandchildren are going to pay a serious price for it. >> i liked her speech becauseand she talked about the breadbasket or the bread wrapper on her shoes. i thought a lot of people were going to like that like when
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rick santorum was talking about his grandfather's big hands. will the republicans succeed with the populist crowd? >> i don't know. the president proposed a tax cut tonight on most of -- for most of america, and they're supposed to be for tax cuts and they all sat there very stoney during the president's talk about tax cuts for working people. it seems like to me the president is fighting for the underdog in this country right now, and that's the people who do get their fingernails dirty like joni ernst's parents. the republicans seem to be worried about wall street and dismantling dodd-frank. so i really thought -- i will say that one part of joni ernst's speech that i keep
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hearing over and over again, they keep saying repeal and replace. has anybody seen replace? >> that's a great question. are they willing to just put up that wall and say we're going to roll back history on cuba and obamacare, roll back history on same-sex marriage, just roll it all back are they comfortable with that position going into 2016? >> it's hard to tell right now, chris. time will tell but it's very disingenuous to keep telling the american people they have a replacement for the health care reform when they refuse to tell us what they are. i can't believe that they've gotten away with it for year after year after year. it's time that -- if they're hiding that "replace" 134somewhere, it's time for it to come out and say hello. >> it's usually tax credits.
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thank you so much for coming on tonight. >> you bet. >> i want to bring in our panel here. i want to ask both of you for your response to the joni ernst response. there were five different republican responses to the state of the union tonight. one spanish and three other tea party responses. what do you make of the republican response tonight, victoria? >> you know, i think she has an incredibly compelling story. her response was very narrative heavy. it's interesting. but where were the specifics? it was totally devoid of anything in terms of details. she said we're going to reform and the democrats want to raise
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our taxes. well what is that reform you're talking about? folksy, cute. >> michael? >> i think she hit the right tone, that the gop is trying to set going forward in terms of that sort of folksy chris talked about that type of old cloth republican-ism that we seemed to have moved away from. the specifics are never there. they weren't in the president's speech about how we paid for these programs that he's laid on the table. nor was it in the republican's response. that's what the hard work of governing boils down to. how will these sides come together to deal with the things that the republicans want to do on health care or taxes. >> can i just ask a question? how can you get more specific than i'm going to nail the 1% and pay for the middle class --
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>> what is your alternative, if you're talking to a congress that's not going to give you any of that. >> the point is michael, he specifically said where he wanted to tax, he specifically talked about tax credits in the middle class. she wonders all up with the bread bags around her feet and said we're going to -- he's not talking about raising taxes with those with bread bags. [ all talking at once ] >> reverend as you know it's all connected. just because you think you're going to raise the taxes on this end, that's not going to be some impact, there is. it's trickle down trickle up everyone is impacted by tax increases. those very rich are employers and investors, those very rich
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put down a lot of cash for the middle class. >> you have tax credits for the people she's talking about, if you have incentives in terms of -- >> that's money -- >> she didn't answer that -- >> michael -- >> the president was very -- at least he was saying i want to improve education. he said i'm going to improve education by providing free college tuition for the first two years. >> $60 billion, where is it coming from? the president didn't address the deficit or the $18 trillion debt. >> he's saying -- >> he's still sitting with an $18 trillion debt. >> let's talk to a sitting republican member of congress. president obama did call again tonight in his speech for congress to raise the minimum wage tonight. here's how that sounded.
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>> and everyone in this congress who still refuses to raise the minimum wage i say this -- if you truly believe you can work full-time and support a family on less than $15,000 a year, try it. [ applause ] >> another generality. the guy is all over the place. he was totally specific, michael. >> our next guest tweeted this obama just claimed you can't raise a family on $7.25 an hour. news flash, you can't do it on $10.10 either. that was from congressman aaron schock republican from illinois. thank you for being here in person instead of just on twitter. >> thank you for having me on. the point i'm trying to make is
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artificially raising the cost of labor is not the way to raise people out of poverty and give them a living wage. i'm somebody who started out on minimum wage and slowly moved my way up the economic ladder. the minimum wage has always been that in our country, it's been the starting wage. the good thing is most people on minimum wage are younger than me. there are many first-time workers who are starting their careers, who are needing training on the job. and what we need to do here in congress and federal government is to do those trade agreements that the president talked about, do tax reform to make america more competitive. get the boot off the neck of job creators and incomes will rise and the economy will grow. that's how people move up the economic ladder not just artificially raising the cost of labor. >> congressman, if it was only trainees and teenagers who were making minimum wage i think your argument would be one that would carry the day.
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part of raising the minimum wage is so popular across the country, even among republicans, is because of the blank fact that it is actually contrary to your tweet, easier to live on $10.10 an hour than it is to live on $7.25 an hour. and there isn't any evidence that raising the minimum wage has a negative impact on job growth. >> it's easy to live on $25 an hour, it's easier to live on $30 an hour. let's raise it to $50. the argument doesn't fit the argument that -- whether you're making $10 in peoria illinois. you don't have to be in new york city. if you live in illinois and making $15 an hour you're not sustaining a family on that. and we need higher wages than minimum wage and we need an economy that's creating more head of household jobs. right now in this economy, we
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have more unemployed adults at this period in our country's history than any other time. so that's what we need to be concerned about. and work on that. on a positive note there are things in the president's speech that we can work on. that's where i'm walking out of the chamber tonight, committed on finding those areas of common ground and championing those areas. tomorrow we meet with the trade ambassador. if you level the playing field in those 11 asian countries, represent 40% of the world's gdp. the president said 95% of the world's customers are outside our country's boundaries. the farmers and manufacturers in my district need access to those markets. infrastructure he talked about infrastructure -- >> the president tonight called for a tax credit of $3,000 for
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people per child. it always seemed to be a relatively conservative argument, because you're encouraging child rearing and he's saying i'll pay for that by going after the top 1%. how do you fight that argument with middle class people? there are few people in your district who are 1% people. so how do you say i can't stand this president's idea of shifting money to the people that make less than the 1%. >> because my voters don't believe in income redistribution. that's what the president talked about tonight. he talked about raising taxes on higher income earners. >> wait a minute i never heard a republican say a tax cut is giving people money. those people earned the money. they may earn $30,000 a year and if they give a $3,000 credit that's not giving them
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money but tax relief. why did you shift the vocabulary there? if you're giving somebody a tax break, are you saying that's giving them money? >> you're asking about how the president is proposing paying for tax cuts. as you know democrats always make the argument that you have to pay for tax cuts. that's not an argument republicans make. we believe we should lower taxes on everyone. i know you don't like to hear this, but we're the only body to put forward a tax proposal that fits the president's stated goal. the president has said he wants to lower the corporate tax rate to 25% to keep american businesses from leaving. >> a lot of people would like to see lower rates. >> only house republicans have put out a plan to do that. those are areas of common ground that we can work on to accomplish goals that the president has and the congress has. >> i'm just trying to listen carefully, congress.
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you've called for a tax cut for the top 1% to go along with the tax child cut -- >> i didn't call for a tax cut. >> you said you wanted the same tax cut across the board. >> i said we need to get rid of the loopholes and -- >> let's roll the tape. >> we need to lower the rate for everyone. >> you want to lower the rate for the top 1% for everyone. you just said it again. >> that's what you do when you get rid of loopholes and deductions in the code. that's what the president said he wants to do and what i want to do. the only difference is i got a man to do it. >> i've never heard a republican say giving somebody a tax break is giving them money when they started with the money by earning it. congressman, thank you for coming on. >> i'm glad that we agree that people deserve tax cuts. >> that's very generous of you
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to let me have my money back. that's a republican value. >> good to be with you. >> that's a good argument because the reason minimum wage sells politically, there are more people that are wage earners than employers. >> minimum wage goes up, nothing bad happens. >> most people earn. the woman behind the counter said thank you for what you've done for minimum wage assuming i was for it. so she was talking about minimum wage and what it meant to her. it's not just teenagers and summer jobs. >> i'm going to say that i think a minimum wage hike is possible at the federal level. i don't think it will go to $10.10. but george w. bush signed an increase in minimum wage. one thing that's happened is this president has been talking about raising the minimum wage for the past few years, but
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they've not been doing it at the federal level, but it's been resonating in blue states around the country and now we're living through this experience where there are place where is minimum wage has gone up and they have had better job growth than the maces next door. we've got these natural experiments happening in states and cities all over the country. it's good economics. i think that reality is going to push this congress to doing it. >> i think it's a gimme for the gop. most businesses have already baked in those costs. they've already figured that out. the business people i talk to around the people aren't panicking over this idea because it's already baked in. in most cases they're already trying to improve on that number any way. so this is a potential gimme for the gop. >> joining us right now is
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congressman from texas. he tweeted about ana zamora tonight, tweeting president obama perverts prosecuteorial discretion by inviting a deportable to sit in place of honor with first lady. what do you think of this shot? >> it's unfortunate. she is as american as you and i and congressman steve king is one of those inflammatory voices in the republican party that has a lot of influence over the republican conference right now. but this was a chance for the president and first lady to showcase a dream act student who has a bright future in this
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country if we can pass comprehensive immigration report. >> what is his thing with cantaloupes? then there's the other guy out there from the midwest who shot cantaloupes, something to do with the clinton problems. what is it about that fruit that focuses their attention? s >> you're going to have to ask steve king about that. >> what is the story on these guys? any way. >> i think that he's very much a hard right person on immigration. he's not a very constructive voice. there is a spectrum of opinion how how to handle the issue of immigration. there are also voices in the republican party that sew anger and fear and unfortunately, that's steve king.
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>> i have to ask you about your identical twin brother. is either one of you going to be on the ticket with hillary clinton? >> i know it's not going to be me. i'll be glad to let him do it and support him. it was special to be on the floor with him tonight. he had a much better seat than i did, but i went down to say hello. >> congressman, we just talked with congressman schock from illinois. he suggested -- he brought up unprompted infrastructure tax reform trade and we interrupted him when he was saying the fourth thing. he feels like there's room between house republicans, obviously they sort of run the house with an iron fist under the republican leadership there. house republicans and the
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president, common ground things they can do together. is that happy talk or is that possible from your perspective? >> i'm optimistic there are things we can do together. this is a congress that the nation elected and this is a president the nation elected. one of the areas we should go to right away is criminal justice reform. especially because of the incidents in new york and in ferguson and in other communities, i think it's an issue we should tackle right away. tax reform also. i know that the president has talked about trade with democrats. of course, that's going to be a tough sell. he's got to extend his hand which he did tonight. and hopefully republicans will off theirs as well. >> congressman castro thank you for being with us tonight. >> thank you. >> i want to spring in senator
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cane independent senator from maine. the president's speech was very specific in his talk about middle class economics. it was also emotional when he talked about abandoning cynicism cynicism. the president was also very specific tonight on some national security and foreign policy issues. what was your take on the president's call for an authorization for the use of military force against isis and do you think the congress and the senate specifically can come to something that you all will agree on that? >> i thit sonk so. the first thing i will say is we should do this. we've been pushing for this since last summer as a matter of fact. i think the obligation is on the president to come forth with some language. he said he was going to do that last week. so we're looking for what he
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thinks his authority should be, what the limits should be. but it's past due time for congress to step up and take a role. i think it's going to be very interesting, because a lot of people talk about beating our chests about congressional prerogative, but they really want to duck it when it comes time to make this decision. so it will be interesting to see whether congress accepts what i think is their responsibility to define what our role is and not let this power of making war just entirely devolve on the president. >> one of the things that tends to happen in the last two years of a two-term presidency they always have a congress controlled by the other party and you get some strange bedfellows. you get republicans willing to work with a democratic president. on this isis issue and some of
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these other acute international issues in particular is it possible we'll see some republicans making common cause with president obama and the way they haven't been willing to before? >> i think on some of those issues on trade, i think you'll see a lot of bipartisan support. probably more republican support on the trade issue than on the democratic side. on the international relations side, there will be a lot of common ground. it should be waning at this point. i thought one of the funniest moments is when he said i'm not running again and the republicans 125r89republican s started to applaud. but he said, i won the two times i did run, that was a good retrieval on his part i thought. so i think you're going to see some of that. you'll see some bipartisan work on budget stuff and trying to solve the sequester, which is looming in the next fiscal year.
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so i'm optimistic myself. i thought the president's speech was very interesting for a state of the union. it wasn't the usual laundry list of proposals. he had some broad themes and then the last part where he talked about who we are as a people and the basic fundamental value of trying to work together to solve problems i thought walls pretty strong. i thought the last 25% of the speech particularly was very thoughtful and a kind of departure from past state of the unions. >> angus king independent senator from massachusetts, thank you for being with us. >> the president finished speaking just within the past hour. his address tonight was almost exactly one hour long. this was the shortest obama state of the union, at least in terms of sheer word count. while his address contained
quote quote quote quote
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ambitious agenda items, it revealed the heart of his approach now that republicans control both chambers of congress. tonight, president obama began by trumpeting his administration's achievements. he called out republicans and critics who have said his policy and his approach were destined to fail. >> and in the past year alone, about 10 million uninsured americans gained the security of health coverage. goals were misguided or too ambitious, that we would crush jobs and explode deficits. instead, we've seen the fastest economic growth in over two decades, a stock market that's
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doubled and health care inflation at its lowest rate in 50 years. [ applause ] this is good news, people. [ laughter ] >> that "this is good news people" was an ad lib, because the white house took the step of releasing in advance to the public the entire text of the president's planned remarks so everyone could follow along. in terms of specific agenda items, the president called for a new tax credit for child care. he again called for an increase in the minimum wage as he has done previously. but more than this this was a
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speech about a legislative agenda. the president's address was a statement about his values as a democrat, and as the leader of the nation. the president went back to his own famous first national speech from 2004 harking back to that vision of a singular america that can do great things. >> you know just over a decade ago, i gave a speech in boston where i said there was no liberal america or conservative america. no black america or white america, but a united states of america. i said this because i had seen it in my own life, in a nation that gave someone like mel a chance. over the past six years, the pundits have pointed out more than once that my presidency hasn't delivered on this vision. how ironic they say, that our politics seems more divided than ever.
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it's held up as proof, not just of my own flaws, of which there are many buts are as proof that division itself is misguided, naive, that there are too many people in this town who actually benefit from partisanship and gridlock, for us to ever do anything about it. i know how tempting such cynicism may be but i still think the cynics are wrong. i still believe that we are one people. i still believe that together, we can do great things, even when the odds are long. >> almost immediately after the president's speech tonight, we got what has become the now, i guess, traditional for the obama era, what they now do which is a multipart republican party response. there were five republican response tonight. freshman senator joni ernst of
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iowa delivered the official republican response to the president's speech. freshman congressman carlos carbello of florida delivered the spanish language response. we got an official, sort of, tea party response to the republican response from congressman clausen of florida. then senator rand paul delivered the rand paul republican response to the tea party response to the republican response. and texas senator ted cruz delivered the ted cruz response to the rand paul response and ted cruz's staff will be sending around his response by e-mail. but the takeaway from the main event, from the president's speech tonight, is not just that the president is setting himself up for the next two years, and with a legislative agenda that he can explain and put details on. one of the big takeaways is what
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chris hayes first identified in his first remarks after the president stopped speaking tonight, which is not that only is the president defining himself as somebody who is still relevant in washington, the president tonight, mostly through his ad libs and attitude defined himself tonight frankly as someone with swagger, not just a lame duck president, but a player in washington who is both deserving of respect, worthy of respect, and he expects your respect. >> i have no more campaigns to run. my only agenda -- [ applause ] i know, because i won both of them. [ applause ]
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>> whereupon the mitt romney presidency poofed into -- sorry. fascinating night tonight. that was probably the line of the night. join us now from washington is andrea mitchell. andrea looking a t the speech overall and specifically in your area of focus, which is foreign affairs, what stood out to you the most? >> i think he knows that he has support, 60% support in our polls, only 30% opposing for the cuban normalization process. while there's going to be a lot of criticism, a lot of pushback from people on the hill and the republican party and some democrats, i think he feels strong support for that. so there's that. also on foreign policy he presented a very positive and dare say rosy picture of the so-called progress against isis or isil in iraq and syria.
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it's really -- we're hard pressed to see the progress that they claim. perhaps there's more stability in iraq since there was last summer. that's what white house officials are telling us. you have a government there. certainly to the the standing up of the free syrian army and not progress against assad or progress against isis, certainly, in syria. so the civil war rages on. we are seeing an explosion of anger around the muslim world at "charlie hebdo" and at perceived anti-muslim sentiment. things are in a dire state. we don't have cooperation in nigeria against boko haram. it's hard to see the progress the president talked about. but that said i think his economic message is perfectly calibrated for where the american people are, including some republicans. they're not going to disagree about the wage disparity or
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oppose the child credit. that is going to probably pass. i think that there is going to be broad support for that. according to white house officials, these are his values. i saw, especially in that ad lib, a feisty confident, not lame duck president. and he wants to get stuff done. we were at a briefing today talking to people inside the white house. they do not see their time running out so much as setting and agenda for 2016. hillary clinton already tweeting as she did friday night, along these same themes which is a move of her own economic positioning, and i think this president sees he's setting up a democratic platform and that will be his legacy if he can help the democratic nominee, and they do presume it's going to be hillary clinton, even though she
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hasn't formally declared. she's already signed up some key obama operatives from his last campaign. think they that winning the white house, which will be a third democratic term is going to be his lasting legacy. that's what he is committed to. >> giving a state of the union is like having your own tv show for a couple of hours. i kept thinking tonight that there's a real world tonight that he didn't really talk about, perhaps the overambitious notions of where we stood in the war against isis. he doesn't want to call it the islamic state. there's two japanese people just staring out this in the desert who are going to apparently be decapitated. that reality, what's going on in nigeria's reality. how close was the president to reality, overall, globally tonight? >> i think on foreign policy his projection of success
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against terrorism and against, you know isis in particular as i said is not close to reality. it just -- they have not come one a strategy and they've built a global coalition, but, again, he talked about ukraine and putin being isolated. yes, putin is isolated economically and the falling oil prices have hammered his economy. but at the same time there's renewed fighting in donetsk, and we haven't figured out ukraine or how nato can push back. sanctions have not really worked, and ukraine is going to need more weaponry, and they have not reached that point. so you're right, chris, it doesn't match the reality. but on the domestic economic front, i think the president has laid out a message that will be far more popular outside the hall than inside. he didn't have the waves of applause that he had when democrats rule it would house.
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so it was a very quiet chamber. but it is still a better platform than republicans and the opposition party can have without having that platform. people on facebook were writing me, you know why doesn't he just deliver a message in writing? why does he go up there and do it? because that chamber is the greatest platform the greatest stage for anyone, and he's speaking to a much wider audience. >> andrea you're the best. thanks for joining us. let's bring in ed schultz. tonight, i think we saw about another american fight over trade. it's not the front burner issue, but it is with working people in the manufacturing trades. >> well chris, as i predicted, the first 20, 25 minutes oh of this speech tonight was, there's a lot of good news out there, people. that was really what the president was trying to get out.
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this trade deal is bad for american wanlges. the democrats are concerned about it. but they're not sure they can stop it. for some reason the president, who was out to help the middle class, is going to venture into a trade deal. yes, we're going to export more but we'll import more. this idea that wages are higher in other countries, that might be true. but why do we need a trade deal with vietnam? there's no upside for american workers. >> why is the president doing it, ed? >> i think it's a wall street deal. i think there is so much corporate pressure to get this deal done it's been done in secret. there are members of congress who demanded the details of it and they can't get it. look, the president was very vague on it again tonight, which is exactly what -- >> ed you've covered this probably more than anyone to your great credit.
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i wouldn't help but shake my head at the description of the trade authority in the passages of speech where he says china wants the right to rule to protect american workers, which sounds like a good thing, but it's far removed from the actual wait that this deal would happen. >> we are giving away a manufacturing sector of our economy, and they callis e it emerging markets. so the investment will be over there, not here. and labor is concerned about this. there's one other thing i want to say about tonight. i thought the president was magnificent. as much as he's been obstructed as much as the republicans have thrown "no" at him, the party of no, this man was up there, the last 15 minutes, pleading with the congress to do something for the american people. you know trying to appeal to their greater sensibilities of
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doing something for the country. i thought that was a very profound moment for the president. as far as the rebuttal is concerned, there's a real fraud being played on the american people from the republicans. joni ernst did in commercial about castrating a big. she's trying to put lipstick on a pig called keystone. listen to what i say, this pipeline, whether the president approves it or not, the senate can vote 100 times on it. the house can vote 100 times on it. it's not going to be built for at least two years because of a lawsuit filed friday. the land owners and a lot of them are republican, and i'm going to be in nebraska doing this story. this is now a property rights issue, and for the republicans to come out and pin this on the president for not doing a jobs package on keystone is flat out
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fraudulent. this is why the president hasn't made a decision because he knows the law a hell of a lot better than the republicans do. he doesn't have to make a decision. so for joni ernst to come out and talk about 42,000 jobs and all the president has to do is sign off on it she's lying. >> there will be a keystone pipeline running through the united states eventually? >> maybe. but it's not going to happen during obama's years. >> ed shutchultz, thank you for your time. we had the whole setup by joni ernst how republicans are not about gimmicks but real jobs and why we need the real keystone project.
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the total number of permanent jobs from key spoken would be 35. >> in the speech i couldn't tell if he was floating a deal if he was basically saying this is part of an infrastructure bill maybe. i couldn't tell if that was showing a little leg there. >> he's been showing leg all along. yes, he says he will voto the bill because the process hasn't continued. but do you think he's adamantly -- >> no although his rhetoric has gotten much more skeptical. >> it's one of the biggest bargaining chips he has. if there is a big bill he wants to pass he can throw that in there. >> and the value of it he's been helped by all the activism. the value of the bargaining chip has gone up and up.
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>> let's talk to a democratic senator who is in favor of keystone senator joe mansion. great to see you. >> how are you? >> great. i was interested too. on two things on which i know you have very strong opinions. one is about the end of the war in afghanistan and your feelings about american involvement in the middle east and overseas. but also this issue about keystone. you definitely have been a booster of this. you voted for it. you think the president ought to approve it. do you feel like you know what's going to happen on that issue in the senate and overall? >> i've been listening to ed and all of you speaking. i just look at the facts, rachel. we buy about 7 million barrels of crude oil a day. we buy about 800,000 barrels from venezuela, which is heavy
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crude, such as the keystone oil. we buy 1.3 million from saudi arabia. we buy it from russia. it just makes common sense to me i would rather buy from our friends who won't hold us hostage and use the revenue we pay them against us. i don't think this is about the pipeline. i think the people opposing the extraction of the oil sands, if you will so i don't know. canada is a sovereign nation. they're going to produce it and sell it somewhere in the world. there will be a demand for it. we're putting amendments in there to make sure that we don't shift the oil offshore. that basically any oil that comes to america comes under the jurisdictional of the commerce department which says we're not shipping any crude oil off. so there's things to do to make it better. but if people are against it they're going to be against it. >> senator, does it give you pause when we have pipeline
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accidents like the one over the weekend in montana? >> sure. >> that's not a pipeline seen as being at high risk. in montana, they're drinking bottled water. are you worried at all that we're essentially selling the safety of this country, putting some very important aquifers at risk to help canadian companies get their stuff to the world market at no real benefit to americans. >> well again, we respectfully disagree on the real benefit to america. any time that we have more security and independence from foreign oil, we're going to be more secure. i've been very clear about that. as far as the concern, absolutely i'm concerned. i'm concerned about all the rail traffic that comes out.
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you see a train go, a tanker blow up and all the different things that happen. i also see when you have a pipeline such as in antarctica up in ahas lalaskaalaska they have a good safety record. we have hundreds of thousands of miles of pipeline throughout america now. we're buying 2.5 million barrels a day from canada already. it's not something new. it's not something that's never been done. if there's another energy that's commercial hydrogen and we don't need anything but water, that would be great. but right now, we've got to use everything we can to be energy independent. >> senator, i have a question. it's no secret that on issues like keystone andmenty of other things, that senator mcconnell is going to need senators like you to break filibusters on legislation he wants to push
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through. how many conversations have you had with him about things he wants to do and have you heard from the president personally and has he tried to reach out to convince you that maybe you should stick to the home team and the democratic party? >> well i have not heard from the president, and i have had a few conversations with mitch mcconnell and some of their leadership, along with the democratic leadership. people know that i'm right in the middle. you know i'm looking at the policy, not the politics. when they talk about the home team, the home team is truly america. let's start doing something for the united states of america. i've always said that. i'm not going to vote -- if they're going clear to the far right and off the cliff, that's not me. but the bottom line is can we find a compromise to move good policy forward? i'm going to be one of the people they come to consistently. >> senator, do you see any
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reason to believe that the president is going to change his position overall and you he's dealt with congress? he's been pretty hands off. >> well it started out to -- the speech started out to where i had a lot of hope and it got down to the point when -- i know he has a sense of humor and i would have loved to have seen the president when he said i can't run, this is my last election. and then he smiled. wouldn't have been great if he said come on guys, that deserves a standing ovation. that would have loosened people up a little bit. i think the response they got, it is what it is. i'm looking for the policies. he makes a great speech. he has great delivery. >> thank you very much senator joe manchin of west virginia. you are a great guy to keep an eyen. let's bring in chuck todd the
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moderator of "meet the press." chuck, the first part was obviously -- child credit $3,000 community college and very powerful reassertion of his optimism about america, about his chances -- in fact it's moving towards a post racial whatever we call it these case and another double downing on the fact that he thinks washington can work it won't be blue state, red state against each other. what did you make of it in terms of headlines and hard news? >> we've gotten most of the headlines and hard news out of the way. the big picture, i thought it was almost like president obama doing a victory lap, not just talking about the economy, but
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it was defending his foreign policy views, even with jabs at his critics without naming them though i think everybody television network cut away to john mccain when he mentioned the vladamir putin line. and then the ending with what you were just mentioning about our broken politics. some of it struck me as defensive on his part saying hey, i made my effort. i want to see all of washington do better. we've got to be able to rise from this. when you put the whole thing together, chris, it just feels as if this was a president who realizes this was his real last state of the union. the one he gives a year from now will be in the heat of the presidential campaign and will be like this odd interruption while we're all in the midst of covering iowa, new hampshire and south carolina and the state of the union will interrupt things for a day and a half and fades
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away. >> you know i'm wondering and worrying about what's coming now in this fight over the use of military force fighting isis. you've got people like menendez out there, real hawkish. i fear what can be done in the amendment process, that this can be expanded on a wide attack of islam. i don't know what congress can micromanage a war. that's where it seems like we're headed. i am worrying about this and will we ever get out of that once we go into it? >> there's not much in the
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president's speech that will make it through this congress. but one of the asks is a new war authorization. i guess i'm more optimistic than you are, chris. you have a bob corker and the president's national security team, they have a very good working relationship arguably better working relationship than the leading democrat in the senate. so the white house has made it clear in talking to folks that they're going to throw up some suggestions of how they would word it which is something a lot of republicans want to do. but there's enough sort of concern, there's enough republicans and democrats that will come together that are concerned about giving too much authority into this war authorization. there seems to be a working majority that wants some sort of limited war authorization that i think will end up making it through. i think corker is the right guy to get it done. i think president obama and corker together can make it
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happen. >> just two things on this war authorization. the white house position is, it's one thing to say we need authorization. it's another one to say the authorization to use of military force covers us legally. it's a hard thing to say, we don't need authorization, but we want authorization. you don't need authorization if what you are doing is legal. and if you want authorization, why do you want authorization? so the legal status of this is very unclear. >> if you back up and say, to say that we already have the authority from a resolution that doesn't mention the word "syria" -- >> right, but it is the belief or the legal findings of this white house that the phrase associated forces in the original bill includes the
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groups we are bombing right now including isis. >> any way, i hope it doesn't include the word iran. thank you, chuck todd. i love your optimism. we'll be right back with more with our panel and nbc's richard engel is going to join us. and our strategists will rejoin us. this is msnbc's coverage of the state of the union. >> at this moment, with bustling industry booming energy production, we have risen from recession freer to write our own future than any other nation on earth. huh, fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent
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i call on this congress to show the world that we are united in this mission bypassing a resolution to authorize the use of force against isis. we need that authority. >> president obama "we need that authority." joining us now is richard engel from istanbul. richard, great to have you with us. were you able to see the speech from turkey and what did you think of the president's remarks tonight? >> i don't understand why he says they need that authority. the u.s. is already launching a war against isis. >> right. >> there is a war that is going on every single day that we are watching, we are depending on his releasing aerial and drone footage of the bombs that are exploding. so is it about money? are they talking about money? is it about increasing the air campaign? so i'm not sure what he's
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talking about, we are already in a war that according to military officials, kills about 1,000 members of isis every sick single month. >> in terms of the president's call tonight, he didn't talk in a huge amount of detail about the threat posed by isis or the connection between that military fight in iraq and syria, and how it relates to the threat of global terrorism like we saw in france and threatened across europe over the past couple of weeks. if there is an authorization for the use of military force and debate in washington if that does happen what do you think needs to be sort of input into that debate in terms of the reality on the ground in terms of what the real fight against isis is like and how american military forces are effective or not thus far? >> well i'll try to answer you. i've got a little bit of a cold
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here that just kicked in as you were speaking. >> you are free to cough. it's cable. >> this goes back to the conversation i think you were having earlier, chris was having earlier with andrea mitchell. it seems that the rose-colored glasses through which he was viewing the foreign policy were so rose colored that i don't think they don't even reflect the world that we're living in. he said at one stage that american leadership including our military power, is stopping isil's advance. it didn't look that way in paris. it looked like isis was doing well. it didn't look that way -- i'm not going to be able to finish this -- with this new video that was released today with the japanese hostages. it doesn't look that way in syria. isis is doing very well and the strategy is completely disjointed. so to sell that as a big success
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i think was missing the point. maybe even disingenuous. instead, he said the president i'm quoting, of getting dragged into another ground war in the middle east we are leading a broad coalition to degrade and destroy isil. first of all, 80% or more of the air strikes that are taking place now are by the u.s. and the u.s. is getting drawn back into a ground war with about 2,000 troops another 1,000 on their way to iraq. and with that i'm going to have to drink some water. >> get some water. poor guy. keep him up in the middle of the night and -- >> that's what i was thinking. richard engel, i think he's the best foreign reporter in the country right now, maybe the world. join us now, republican senator from north dakota. it was interesting that the response given by joni ernst
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really had one part specific which was keystone. is this going to be an iconic fight that will be waged for the next couple of years? i think your wide will win it but why is it such an important issue for republicans and some of the democrats, what is the hard case that we haven't really heard? >> it's about building an energy plan that makes us energy secure meaning we produce more oil and gas here at home so we don't have to get it from opec. and you see the benefit right now at the pump with lower gas prices, huge benefit to consumers and the economy. it's also a national security issue. we can't continue to rely on places in the middle east like opec and venezuela. >> i understand the argument but isn't it a pipeline through the united states not to the
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united states? we can bid for it at the world price, but it's canadian oil being sold to the world. isn't that the case? >> no if you look at the environmental impact statement it indicates the oil will be used here and it goes to refineries, to the just on the gulf coast, but also in illinois, and remember this isn't just about moving canadian crude, it moves domestic crude from like mine. >> senator, do you have any concerns about this sort of sustainability of the oil boom in your state and the tar sand it is we continue to see oil at this price? the saudis said they're willing to deal with oil at this price, how long can the north dakota oil industry survive oil at this price this >> so you're making a really
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important point here with that question. opec right now is trying to shut us down. they see us gaining energy in independence. they don't want that. they want to reassert their market dominance. that's why it's important to produce more oil and gas, as well as other kinds of energy including renewables. >> isn't it a problem if there's continued investment and they're willing to go at this price level for a long period of timesometime some ? >> no, if we have the right kind of business, we can compete and win this fight. >> is this a case of predatory price cutting by the saudis? >> that's exactly what it is. they are undercutting to try to reassert their market dominance. >> so when we say a little more than $2 for regular, that's a
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function entirely of the saudis. you're saying they're doing this as a favor to us on the surface to screw us in terms of energy independence. >> they certainly want to reduce that price to affect iran and russia. but at the same time they know they have to maintain their market share so they can continue to set that price. so it affects us as well and we're part of that strategy. but we can continue our industry if we do it with the right infrastructure and the right kind of investment climate. that also helps us invest in new technologies that produce better environmental storage. >> senator, thanks for being with us tonight. this has been great to talk to you. >> thank you. >> i want to bring in one other aspect of the president's speech that is getting a lot of attention. which is the president's brief but pointed mention tonight
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about the protests that have taken place across the country and the issue of police violence and the way think eve been responded to in the country. watch. >> we may have different takes on the events of ferguson and new york but surely we can understand a father who fears his son can't walk home without being harassed. and surely we can understand the wife who won't rest until the police officer she married walks through the front door at the end of his shift. >> president obama went on to say, surely we can agree it's a good thing that for the first time in 40 years that the crime rate and incarceration rate have come down together and used that as a starting point for democrats and republicans to reform the criminal justice system. that was the total remarks on the president's behalf. >> there are some people who
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wished it had been a paragraph rather than a sentence, because after all, it's something we have been focused on. it dominated the news for months in this country. you know i guess two lines about that i certainly think he could have and perhaps should have gone deeper into the subject, knowing that whatever he says about race whatever this president says about race is misconstrued it is polarizing, and that's just a fact. it's just the way it is. >> do you think the president has let attorney general eric holder not just take on these issues but talk about these issues, not just because of eric holder's interest in this as a subject, but also so he can be a heat shield, so these issues can
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be identified with him instead of the president this >> eric holder is his own man, obviously he serves at the pleasure of the president. comment on henry lewis' arrest without this huge hoo-ha about something that was simple and frankly trivial. so imagine his going to ferguson and how that would be construed and misconstrued, often deliberately by some people. it's just -- part of this just comes with the territory of being the first black president. being the first black anything is fraught. this is fraught with fraught. it's just fraught. and you add to that this you
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know tactic of just opposing anything the president does and they made a business model of opposition to the president based on distortion of what he actually said. >> i think to that overall point that you're making it's interesting and instructive that the white house put out word today that president obama will be going for the 50th anniversary of the selma march in march this year. they put out word about that and he did not talk about it in the speech. >> he did mention the 50th anniversary. >> did you notice the way the clip you showed how he balanced the concern of african-american parents and their kids on the street being harassed on the street. didn't take a stand on what happened in ferguson and with garner and he balanced that with the statement about the wife
quote quote
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hoping her husband makes it home. he did the say thing with the speech in philadelphia. it seems like the paradigm is he has to when addressing race as the first black president, he has to do a hedge. he has to balance it very clearly. >> perfectly balanced. >> he has to be the at least agreed black men in america. >> much more ahead tonight. steve stay with us. >> i served in congress with many of you. i know many of you well. there are a lot of good people here on both sides of the aisle. and many of you have told me that this is not what you signed up for. arguing past each other on cable shows, the constant
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♪ i have no more campaigns to run. my only agenda -- [ applause ] i know, because i won both of them.
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[ applause ] withing back. let's bring in steve with reaction to what the president said tonight. >> it was a reaction. we're looking at a very specific type of reaction. these are not the formal statements that they that put out. we decided we would look at how they're reacting to this speech and interacting with this speech on social media. looking from an content standpoint a lot of negative reaction to the speech. you get a sense of very different styles of how they handle it. mitt romney a possible future third time presidential candidate. the president more interested in
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politics than leadership. linked to a facebook post that expanded it on those thoughts. he posted this soon it was over. rand paul was live tweeting the speech. mr. president you can't wave a magic wand and declare something free. a lot of retweets. he's doing that during the speech. the other thing he did, he tweets memes out. he found a meme of willy wonka out. that got a lot of attention. ted cruz put out this negative innocent. america saw a powerful demonstrate it's time to move
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on. this interesting. scott walker. you don't know the name donovan slack. he's a reporter for the usa today. donovan slack tweeted out after the speech that scott walker has released a statement and this is a quote from the statement. we have not been able to get our hands on the statement but scott walker retweeted a reporter with excerpts from his statement. that's how scott walker has been handling this tonight. jeb bush this is his style. he posts longer slighter longer posts on facebook. this came up after the speech. a little critical of president obama for using the tax code to divide us. rick santorum, he made an interesting comment. has there been a single proposal
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that any republican has applaused? a couple minutes after this the president talked about trade and he got a little applause. we were trying to figure out this context for this from rick perry. he tweeted only once just about the number of jobs that were created in texas and put the state of the union hashtag in texas. different styles there. we didn't see anything from marco rubio and the others. give you perspective of how republican candidates were handle it. >> on that issue about ted cruz, i'm trying to figure out what he was going on. he said he was going to do his own response. he posted a poorly lit cell phone video and he said i want to stop and start over but they had already posted it now there's nothing posted. it seems like the ted cruz
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social media response might have been an implosion. >> we've been trying to figure out what happened. we were trying to get the video up. it looks like a hand held like anybody would take on their camera phone, on their cell phone. in the hallway in the corridor of the capitol. i think it's stephen f. austin statue is behind him. there's a flub. he stops. the video is floating around online. if they've taken it down other people certainly have seen it and it will live on. >> wow. fascinating. a swing and a miss is much more interesting than never swinging at all. last thoughts tonight from you rev and victoria in terms of what was accomplished tonight on the president's side. >> i think the president recaptured the whole mission that he started in national politics by really raising
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above, raising the nation above just politics appealing to our values appealing to how we want to be defined as a country. really aggressively saying let's fight for middle class economics. going after the top 1%. saying there's common ground and really raising the bar a little on the republicans. they have devoted to politics but he is said a moral tone again and a values tone that i think is very important. >> i saw a tone that we saw in 2008 of optimism. really quickly, i saw talk of women being equated with the economy. in terms of child care equal wages and maternity and sick leave. this is a democratic strong point and he nailed it. >> don't be scared. that was the theme. it was the theme for his presidency and the american
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people. things are getting better. we're turning the corner. brighter hoe brighter horizons. feel that. we can take a moment here. we've been in crisis for so long. don't be scared. fear not. i thought it was powerful. >> the thing i did not expect to feel, which i did was if he could return for a third time he would. i did not feel that way heading into the midterm elections and the feeling he is going to print strint sprint to the end of this presidency. it's politics and it continues. (son) oh no... can you fix it, dad? yeah, i can fix that. (dad) i wanted a car that could handle anything. i fixed it! (dad) that's why i got a subaru legacy.
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to interact in ways they never thought possible. this cloud turns data into excitement. this is the microsoft cloud. good evening. i'm chris matthews. president obama made his appeal to the american people for the final two years of his presidency. it comes at a time when americans are feeling more optimistic about the state of the union itself than at any time since the president's been in office. tonight he told the country the worth of times are behind us. >>


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