tv NOW With Alex Wagner MSNBC June 1, 2015 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT
now with alex wagner starts now. >> lindsey graham becomes the ninth republican to declare a 2016 bid. secretary john kerry is flying back to boston after suffering a major injury in europe. and caitlyn jenner introduces herself to the world. but first, did rand paul just hold a campaign rally on the senate floor? it's monday june 1st and this is "now." >> are we so frightened that we're willing to give up our freedoms? >> time has run out on key national security agency powers. >> no one knows what danger will come. >> in a sense, it's frightening. >> senator rand paul led the charge. >> are we willing to trade liberty for security? >> we shouldn't be disarming unilaterally. >> this really did bear open the huge schism in the republican party. >> some of them i think secretly want there to be an attack in the united states so they can blame it on me. >> i don't think i know any
red-blooded american or any member of congress who wants an act of terror to be carried out. >> i would not stoop to something like this. >> do you think you'll accomplish something? >> the government's bulk collection of records is going to end. >> today for the first time in 14 years, the nsa cannot collect the phone data of americans without first getting a subpoena. but only for the next day or so. after allowing key parts of the patriot act to expire the senate reconvened this afternoon to consider changes to a different bill one that curbs the goth'svernment's ability to collect the phone data of millions of americans. the final vote of that bill could take place as soon as tomorrow. but what started as a fierce debate on government surveillance has evolved into an even fiercer debate for the soul of the republican party. senator rand paul, who single handedly forced the expiration of these revisions and is running for president, he
represents one wing of his party, a wing that is not particularly popular in the senate gop. this is what happened on the senate floor yesterday. >> mr. president -- mr. president. >> mr. president? >> mr. president -- >> yes. >> mr. president, i want the regular order. >> mr. president -- >> i will ask a question. >> i would be happy to yield to the senator from arizona for a question. >> maybe the senator from kentucky should know the rules of the senate. >> yikes. to his detractors, senator paul had this to say. >> people here in town think i'm making a huge mistake. some of them secretly want there to be an attack on the united states so they can blame it on me. >> although senator paul is not backing down on his stance he did walk back that comment today. >> in the heat of battle, i think high besh lee can get the better of all of us. i think we need to have an
intelligent debate and hyperbole gets the better of us. >> joining me now is oregon's democratic senator member of the senate intelligence community ron wyden. thanks for joining me. is the u.s. freedom act going to pass? >> yes. and the bottom line is today. i have been working to close this program for almost a decade. a program that does not make us safer and compromises our liberties is closed as of today. now, i will tell you, a lot of us have been working on this for close to a decade. senator paul has come to the senate more recently. but he has been a very constructive ally in this effort and i've appreciated what he's done. >> some people say that if this usa freedom act was going to always be the thing that passed what exactly has senator paul done? >> well, first of all, the real question is what the majority leader has done. and in effect my view is that
he has reaped what he sewed. he could have begun this debate a long time ago but he chose to in effect begin the debate after the house of representatives went home. my sense is that he felt that the old pattern of just waiting until the very last minute everyone understands it's a dangerous time and he thought everyone would just blink. this time it was different. >> how comfortable are you with the notion of phone companies holding the metta data? is that measurably better than the u.s. government holding consumer metta data? >> that is the way it always traditionally was. in effect, on an individual basis with a court order, or if you had emergency circumstances, target someone who represented a real threat to our country. what we've had for a number of years now is a program, and this has been documented by
independent anti-terror authorities, is something that doesn't add any value beyond what those traditional approaches would have taken. at the same time, it sets up a federal human relations database. the government knows who you called and where you called from. it's got a lot of private information about snentinnocent americans. >> a magazine argues that congress has tended to a paper cut, while it ignored the internal bleeding. that there are other provisions that are much more relevant to american civil liberties, including the act which monitors non-citizens living within the united states. and executive order 12333, which is the surveillance of overseas communications of non-citizens. is this a beginning of a robust debate around all of those things? >> it's sure high time. i can tell you, we consider the fight to have just begun. for example, i've already filed
amendments to close the back door search loophole. thax section 702 of fisa. you also ought to be concerned about whether americans are going to get swept up in those searches, have their e-mails read. i propose closing that back door search loophole. another major issue deals with encryption, when in effect you have encoded somebody's data and messages. now you have the fbi director actually suggesting that the government should require that companies build weaknesses into their products. so as to overcome encryption. i'm going to be fighting hard on those issues. i also point out that congressman we want to make sure that government agencies don't turn everybody's cell phones into tracking device. >> we look forward to that debate. senator ron wyden, thanks as always, for your time. >> thank you. >> joining me now is the chairman of the slate group jacob weisberg jameel smith,
and jess mcintosh. thank you for joining me from so far away. are you in the same time zone? to the question of the national debate that we're supposed to be having over surveillance, is this it? are we having it? are we living in a moment that a lot of people have been calling for? or is this a flash in the pan? >> part of the problem with this issue is that you have these fundamental principles about freedom and privacy and surveillance. it ends up being couched in very technical collections. people can't be expected to understand that. you have to know who to trust. i'm a guy i trust. won wide ron wyden. he has been a solid civil libertarian, but who understands the security issues. i happened to think rand paul is kind of right about this but i don't trust him. he just happens to be right.
ron wyden is the person to trust. >> i don't know if rand paul has burnished his credentials by going out and saying there are a lot of -- there are some people out there who maybe want a terrorist attack to happen so they can blame it on me. i mean, to suggest that anybody on capitol hill or in america wants another terrorist attack for any reason. >> that's the third rail of something that you say is to suggest that somebody actually wants that to happen. but rand paul does this consistently. he is absolutely willing to sublimate an issue for his own ambition. this story, when i read everything about it this story is about him using the senate floor to campaign for president? >> i mean doesn't everybody do that to some degree? >> i mean, everybody talks about the work that they do in the office that they hold when they're running for the next office, yes. but everybody does not say from their presidential campaign take a selfie of yourself watching c-span while i
filibuster on the floor. and then the campaign actually put out video from the senate floor, which is just straight up illegal. >> you try talking for ten hours. i can't imagine what will come out of my mouth after ten hours. a lot worse than that. >> absolutely ron wyden has been active on this issue for a long time. rand paul has been shameless in his self-promotion around it but he has made it an issue in large part because he's broken with the elders in his party and he is taking a stand there. we're having this debate like maybe we wouldn't. >> that's exactly the word i was going to use to describe it. at the end of the day, though i think what we're really beginning to learn is just how poorly republicans govern. and so the biggest thing that i took out of this is not necessarily rand paul getting on a soap box but the fact that mitch mcconnell is very bad at his job.
>> that's a second day story of this story. is that this all happened to mitch mcconnell, who came in not wanting any of this kind of rabble rousing to happen. >> right. and then he sends everyone off for a week on vacation and basically completely sabotaged himself. so if you open the door for rand paul, you know rand paul is the kind of guy that does things like this. you know that he has this issue with the forefront possibly of his campaign. >> well can you run the campaign on this, though? will this be enough to keep him -- >> i think it's something that is probably his most visible issue. you can't run a campaign on closing down prisons. i mean that's not something that's going to drive people to voting. you talk about -- >> not in the republican primary. >> everyone's heard of edward snowden. everyone's heard of what edward snowden revealed. and if you're talking about putting that at the forefront of the presidential debate i think you could -- >> i just wonder if you think in a presidential primary that this is something that puts rand paul
in good standing. >> he's an outsider. he's a republican ralph nader. the gap between rand paul and dick cheney or the gap between rand paul and mitch mcconnell, the one senator who's endorsed them, is bigger than the gap between any two figures in the democratic party. big hear then the gap between bernie sanders and hillary clinton probably. >> oh for sure. i will say the problem with rand paul is he's not consistent. he talks about drones and then sort of makes an exception for drones used in criminal domestic cases. or with this even today or yesterday i believe, he said he would -- instead of this mass blanket surveillance, he would hire a thousand new fbi agents to track people in the united states. if you're a libertarian, the hiring of a thousand new fbi agents does not assuage your fears about an overlord government. >> he's going to give them very powerful magnifying glasses. >> i don't think that edward snowden and a collection of metta data is enough to run a
campaign on. but possible libertarian principles would be. i don't know what rand paul runs on other than rand paul. >> the nebulous rand paul cloud. >> every time we give him a platform, he says something ridiculous, like people are hoping america is attacked by terrorists. so even the rand paul cloud is not going to do it for him. he's just not that charming it turns out. >> we will be talking much more about the 2016 field. just when you thought it was safe to enter the republican race for president, dick cheney is back. we will discuss his latest party popping plans. plus, tracy morgan speaks for the first time about the car crash that nearly took his life one year ago. and later, america loses a great public servant. we'll look back on the life of beau biden. that's next on "now."
a member of the gang of eight becomes republican candidate number nine. south carolina senator lindsey graham announced today he is entering the race for president, but announcing in his hometown of central south carolina senator graham staked his bid less on immigration reform than on national security and being the anti-rand paul. >> those who believe we can disengage from the world at large and be safe by leading from behind vote for someone else. those who believe the best way to defend ourselves is to lead the world, to make history, rather than be overwhelmed by it i ask for your support. >> joining the panel now, former senior adviser to president obama, director at the university of chicago institute of politics the great david
axelrod. david, are you running for president in the republican party? because it seems like everybody else is. >> hey somebody has to watch. no, i'm not. but it is something to see this assemblage. you were talking earlier about rand paul. i don't think he's going to be the republican nominee, but i think the name of the game is marked differentiation here because the crowd is really large. >> i will say, david, robert wyslinski, a south carolina political strategist he says i think that no one here in south carolina has any illusions that lindsey graham is on a fast track or even near the front part of the pack in that crowded group. who needs south carolina political strategists? i will ask you. is lindsey graham running effectively as a goal post? is he doing this to sort of say to the rand pauls and quote unquote isolationists, i'm here to make sure you guys don't go
too far out there? >> i think that's what he wants on that debate stage. that's what he does very very well. he's smart. he's quotable. the question is will he get on that debate stage. with all those candidates, there are all kinds of standards being set up by fox news and others to see who qualifies for those debates. there's no indication at this moment that lindsey graham will meet any of those tests. >> one person who is sure to be on the debate stage, if not physically, then looming over it like the ghost of christmas past is dick cheney. who i will say has a new interview with "the wall street journal" out today. and scoffs at questions that were raised with jeb bush about iraq and whether or not it was a mistake. cheney says the relevant question first ought to be directed to obama, and it is knowing what you know now, would you have abandoned iraq and
pulled the troops out three years ago. is that effective? >> no. maybe to some. look if you're pro-war, you're going to be signing on with lindsey graham and dick cheney. the point is are you going to be signing up like lindsay graham stated today, if you even think about joining al qaeda or isil, he's going to not only -- he's going to kill you. >> he's going to call a drone, is what he said. i wasn't aware you could telephone a drone. >> it's like an uber. >> i guess i wonder, jake, cheney's coming out with a book in september, co-authored with his daughter liz, "exceptional: why the world needs a powerful america." this seems to be dick cheney running as a goal post in the 2016 race. i feel like he makes many more problems than republicans solve. >> dick cheney doesn't really
admit any daylight into the argument about what might have been done differently during the bush years. interestingly he defends bush's positions much more strongly than anybody in the bush family does. george w. bush is silent about them. jeb bush is equivocateing about them. i guess that's not surprising because they were cheney's positions that he sold to bush in ways that we still don't completely understand. >> it's a reminder that dick cheney was the architect of a failed -- well a failed war and a failed foreign policy that has put america in a very very bad place. >> i have never felt more warmly about dick cheney than i did at the news that he was going to inject himself into a policy debate in the republican nomination for 2016. this is just a nightmare for everyone running. it reminds america that the last time they had the white house, terrible terrible things happened and we were lied to. this is the guy who is public enemy number one of that.
if donald rumsfeld wants to get in the game, that might be as bad. so they're all going to have to react to their last failed presidency, which i think is appropriate. but often doesn't happen. if you have eight years in between, you're not going all the way back. >> let's talk for a minute about what an intellectually honest conservative position might be. we made a mistake, but we think obama made a mistake, too. i don't happen to think this. there is a conservative argument that would be credible which doesn't have this b.s. on either side. >> while you react to that the idea that this is about admitting mistakes and refocusing the spotlight on what this administration has done or not done in terms of the middle east. >> here's the problem. the original mistake is a mistake they keep making. dick cheney and his crowd misread that region.
misread the ethnic makeup of iraq. misread the fact that they were going to unleash sectarian strife. they think that the problem now is that we don't have enough american troops there. the problem now is you've got different sects in iraq that don't want to live together. that want to kill each other. until they come to some accommodation, and unless they come to some accommodation, there's nothing that our troops can do. we keep asking the question if you knew then what you know now. the question should be what did you learn. what did you learn. and what's clear is vice president cheney has learned nothing. >> what if hillary clinton is asked what did you learn about president obama's red line? syria? >> well she -- obviously she's going to have to address that.
the other question she's going to have to ask is the one on libya, which i'm sure will be raised by some. i know rand paul is raising that issue. she's going to have to think those things through, given the role that she played in the administration. but i think it is important for all policymakers to say looking back here's what i learned from that and here's how it will inform my decisions moving forward, because after all, we're electing a president for the future, not the past. >> what would you advise her to say, being the ace political strategist that you are? >> well i don't think there's an easy answer to that question because one of the lessons of the past is that when you have these very complicated sectarian situations, it's very hard to inject ourselves into it in a constructive way. that's what i would say. obviously we have security interests there.
but there's no demonstrable case that i can see that a big american presence there would forestall the kinds of things that we've seen. the problem is the sectarian warfare that's taken over the region. >> i just feel like if this is going to be a foreign policy -- if foreign policy is going to come up if you have dick cheney looming over the republican side, that is not good. it is potentially very bad for the republican field. but there are a lot of minds for a democratic candidate as well. what is the answer? we don't know. david, we will see what 2016 has in store. in the meantime, it is always good to see you. thank you for your time. >> good to see you. thanks. coming up the "vanity fair" cover that is breaking the internet today. we'll discuss "call me caitlyn" just ahead. we live in a world of mobile technology, but it is not the device that is mobile, it is you. real madrid have about 450 million fans.
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surviving a fatal car crash, comedian tracy morgan is breaking his silence. this morning, morgan who says he still has trouble with headaches, memory loss and nosebleeds, gave his first interview to matt lauer. mark barger has more. >> i can't believe i'm here. >> reporter: tracy morgan says he doesn't remember the accident. a collision between his limo bus and a wal-mart tractor-trailer going 20 miles over the speed limit. it left morgan with brain trauma and broken bones, but killed his friend comedian james mcnair. >> bones heal. but the loss of my friend will never heal. >> reporter: it wasn't until morgan came out of a two-week-long coma that he learned of his friend's death. morgan says he repeatedly watched coverage of the accident and his friend's funeral on youtube. >> i don't know what happened to my friend. i didn't know. and i had to pay my respects. and that was my way. >> reporter: the former "snl" and "30 rock" star says he's especially thankful he asked his
fiancee and infant daughter not to travel with him that night because the child was teething. >> my daughter was 10 months old and she wouldn't have made it and megan wouldn't have made it. i don't know, man. that's the i think that that tears me up. >> reporter: last week morgan reached an undisclosed settlement with wal-mart on behalf of himself and other victims. meanwhile, his physical and emotional recovery continues. >> i'm not 100% yet. i'm not. and when i'm there, you'll know it. i'll get back to making you laugh, i promise you. >> reporter: a promise tracy morgan's fans look forward to him fulfilling. just ahead, the supreme court could take up a case this week that would end legal abortion in mississippi. that's next on "now." ♪ roundup ♪ ♪ roundup has a sharp-shootin' wand ♪ ♪ just point and shoot, and weeds are gone ♪ ♪ 'round fences, trees, even mulched beds ♪ ♪ 'cause the only good weed is a weed that's dead ♪ ♪ roundup ♪ [ male announcer
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unrelated to rand paul that have been making the internet jump. caitlyn says i'm doing this to live. and get ready for the fourth installment in the "fifty shades of grey" series. this time told from a brand-new perspective. deep tease. but first, could abortion be the next major social issue to be argued in front of the nation's highest court? this week the supreme court could agree to hear arguments on mississippi's highly restrictive abortion law. that law aims to shut down the sole surviving abortion clinton nick the state, though it has thus far been blocked from taking effect. if the nine justices decide to wade into the issue, it would come at a time of unprecedented legislative activity at the level. since the year 2000 the number of states considered hostile to abortion has more than doubled from 13 to 27. over 231 new abortion restrictions have been adopted by republican-led states since the 2010 midterms.
for president obama, abortion heading to the high court would come as "the washington post" notes that his legacy is increasingly in legal jeopardy. the fates of obamacare, same-sex marriage immigration, and climate change are all already in the hands of the judicial branch. okay. guys specifically jess. the trend lines are terrible on reproductive rights and choice. how worried are you about the supreme court getting a hold of this? >> i'm obviously very worried. i think the trend lines on what's happening state by state are completely opposite as the trend lines that are happening when you poll americans on the issue. more americans don't love the pro-choice label but most americans think that abortion should be legal in most cases and up to the woman and her doctor, not up to politicians. those numbers are higher than they ever have been before. at the same time we're seeing state governments where you have a republican controlling the governor's office and both chambers of the legislature crack down on abortion access
within those states. so now we live in a country where we have a constitutional right to things that we can only access if we live in certain zip codes. that's not the way it was supposed to be set up. >> i always bring up this example, but i have to in this case. republicans don't want to talk about climate change because they're not scientists. and far be it for them to legislate on the climate. but it comes to whether or not a woman needs to terminate a pregnancy going in, they have a lot of advisory guiselinede looipguidelines including whether or not she needs to hear the fetal heart beat. it's totally inconsistent. as jess outlines it's sort of a runaway train. it's like really working for conservatives inso far as they're enacting all these laws across the country. >> didn't mississippi play this line that's sort of like green eggs and ham. would you like the abortion ban with a fox? would you like it in a box? they say no i would not like it with a fox.
there are five votes to preserve the right to abortion. the supreme court has made pretty clear the kinds of restrictions it will allow. you generate headlines as the state legislature does every time it passes some pretty clearly unconstitutional restriction. but i don't see the fundamental dynamic changing in the supreme court with this court. and if it ever did, i think the republicans might be -- they got what they asked for. >> and to that end, the republicans say they want to get rid of obamacare. the supreme court is going to make a big decision on obamacare in the next four weeks. i don't think republicans actually want the supreme court to strike down the provision, the subsidies that are up for debate, because it would gut obamacare and they would have to put something forward. we know now they have no alternative. >> judging from how poorly that case was put together it certainly doesn't seem like they wanted to win it. but the point is you had a situation with the obamacare case in particular where
people -- it's become part of our society. when you take that away maybe everyone's planning to get an abortion or needs an abortion. you realize it's something that's fundamental to who we are as a country. and when you take that away in the middle of an election season, i just don't see that as something that republicans would ever, ever want. >> i think whenever you have to see the consequences of taking that away you can't just talk about it. now we're going to start to see it. what happens if they take away obamacare and those eight million people are immediately uninsured. you have to live with the consequences. republicans are really in trouble. >> the only caveat i would say before we move on to our next topic is that especially in south where some of these restrictive laws have passed, the women who disproportionately
are affected are women of color and poor women who are not looked out by the majority. >> who have the hardest time getting their stories told. >> exactly. in some ways it's been easier for them. >> look what happened in virginia with the transvaginal ultra sounds. everybody went crazy. that was the beginning of the end for bob mcdonnell. >> the word transvaginal ultra sound is something being said in doctor's offices across the state of texas. bruce jenner is now caitlyn jenner. jenner's new identity was revealed in an interview with "vanity fair," which hit the internet just a few hours ago. after which jenner tweeted i'm so happy after such a long struggle to be living my true self. welcome to the world, caitlyn. can't wait for you to get to know her/me. i feel like jake we talk about where -- and broadly speaking, this is -- i feel like this is a really big movement for jen aniston gender -- a really big moment for the transgender rights movement. >> yeah, it's been in the air.
i guess bruce caitlyn jenner has been driving the story. i was reading the press release from "vanity fair." and the thing that struck me was that bruce jenner said that he was doing this partly for the same reason lindsey graham is running for president. he didn't want to be on his death bed and say he'd never done it. >> yes. that sort of goes to like who your true self is. in a partisan way, lindsey graham feels like he is being his true self and ensuring the field looks a certain way. >> in this country, for some reason we have a real problem -- we ask people to be open and to express themselves. we fight for open expression in so many ways. but when it comes to being open with who you actually are, i think people have this real -- there's this big stigma around it. so now, i think this is just a big step hopefully in breaking down. >> someone brought up the fact that why does caitlyn jenner
have to be in a meriwidow, i think it is. >> part of feminism and acceptance is your own agency. and if that's how she chose to be portrayed in her first time out as a woman, that's how she chose, and more power to her. >> then we go back to -- >> we can talk about magazine covers forever. i would love to talk about magazine covers. and the last time we had a lot of transgender women on a magazine, it was the same thing. some absolutely beautiful women. laverne cox. they looked fantastic. but they look like we always make women look. >> abrushir brushed. >> but i do want to separate what a great moment it is. obviously bruce thought it for a very long time. >> for decades, according to the story. >> now is the moment when caitlyn feels comfortable to do it and that's wonderful. >> speaking of gender politics this thursday the fda will decide whether or not to give federal approval to female
viagra. both the drug's developer and women's groups have charged the agency with sexism, given that the fda has approved 26 drugs to help the male libido and zero to assist women. jess, you have been following this. >> i have. >> so there are concentric circles of arguments of whether it's sexism the argument that the plumbing is different with men and women. the drugs don't as easily help women. but then it's sexist to argue that. but women are told it's all in your head, sweetie, just relax. >> i'm not a doctor. i can't personally evaluate -- >> but you are playing one on tv. >> at this point, i'm just reflexively assuming that it's sexism because that's how the medical industry. if we want too much sex, it's in our heads. if we want too little sex, no matter what we do something is terribly troubling and we probably need to lie down. >> and the marketplace, it's like women are funny, and women
might take sex pills, too. it's like an undiscovered untapped market. women who like to laugh and have sex. >> you have drug companies that are desperate for new products and new markets. you know i think -- i'm not so concerned that they're not going to push the fda hard enough on this issue. >> big pharma and women's groups. pretty good. >> you get them on the same side. >> we have to leave it there. i did not get to ask jemile smith about "fifty shades of grey." always good to see you guys. thank you for joining me from across the organization of this desk. we'll have more including an update on secretary of state john kerry. are those made with all-beef, karen? yeah, they're hebrew national. but unlike yours they're also kosher. kosher? yeah, they're really choosy about what goes in. so, only certain cuts of kosher beef meet their strict standards and then they pick the best from that. oh man! what'd we do? they're all ruined. help yourself!
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and hit a curb. the 71-year-old is expected to undergo surgery sometime in the next week. though his recovery time will impact his travel schedule the state department says kerry remains focused on nuclear negotiations with iran and their deadline on june 30th. now here's mary thompson with the cnbc market wrap. hi, mary. >> hey there. an up day on wall street. slight gains for the markets today. the dow finish up about 30 points. the s&p adding a little bit more than four. the gain almost 13 points. that's it from cnbc, first in business worldwide.
quite simply the finest man any of us have ever known. those were the words of the vice president and the biden family in a statement marking the loss of beau biden this saturday to brain cancer. at just 46 years old, beau biden made his mark as much more than the son of the vice president. he served his country deploying to iraq in 2008 as a major general with the delaware army national guard on a tour that earned him a bronze star.
when he could easily have sought his father's senate seat the younger biden declined choosing instead to continue his work as delaware's attorney general and the pursuit of one of the nation's worst pedophiles. beau biden made it his mission to target institutions that preyed on the vulnerable including the financial giants that precipitated the worst economic crisis of our lifetime. appearing on this program in 2011 biden talked about what motivated his fight for financial justice and what he heard from people in his state. >> what they're articulating, among other things is just incredible frustration. and that is the frustration really borne out of a lack of alaska accountability. as you know, alex, and you've written on this and spoken about this, in 2008 the american citizens lost $16 trillion in wealth. that's with a t, not a b. a t. $16 trillion in wealth vanished. and it just didn't vanish because it was a cyclical downturn in the economy. it vanished because of what happened to the economy.
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you wouldn't order szechuan without checking the spice level. it really opens the passages. waiter. water. so why would you invest without checking brokercheck? check your broker with brokercheck. a quest for accountability in america's mortgage mess brought together attorneys general beau biden of delaware and eric schneiderman of new york, who declared in a joint op-ed in 2011 "the american people deserve a full investigation and public exposure of the conduct that got us into the economic quagmire we face today. we must ensure that it never happens again, and we must restore public confidence that ours is a nation committed to the goal of equal justice for all. for more on his work with the late beau biden, i'm joined by new york attorney general eric schneiderman. attorney general, thanks for
joining me. i know it is a tough day for a lot of folks, especially those on the front lines fighting for a more equitable society. thanks for taking the time to talk about attorney general biden. i know that you guys worked together in 2011 and in 2012 on dealing with the fallout from the sub prime mortgage crisis and trying to hold some institutions responsible. tell me a little bit about that work and what it was like to engage with him on a really difficult topic just a few years ago. >> well it was -- he was an amazing colleague. i decided i wasn't going to go along with a deal that pretty much all the other a.g.s and other federal agents wanted to close with the banks that contributed to the crash of the housing market and i thought it was not a good deal and i was going to hold out for something better, and the one guy who called me up out of the blue was beau biden and i didn't know
him. but he said he thought he was doing the right thing and wanted to stand with me and could not have had a more true blue colleague. he was just an amazing -- it was like having captain america as your side kick. you'd say, are you up for this? and he'd say we're standing shoulder to shoulder. that was beau. he was a straight shooter. great advocate. i remember going into meetings where there'd be dozens of other people on the other side of the table, just beau and me on our side. he was absolutely committed. he wanted to help families help folks who had lost their homes. helped deliver a lot of relief for people all across america. the working group deserves our partnership. has already produced $60 billion in relief for governments and families and communities hurt by the crash. he was just a warrior. such an incredibly decent guy. such a strong moral compass.
>> i want to talk a little about something we rarely get to broach, because it's rare in general, which is integrity in politics. and the fact that beau biden declined to seek his father's senate seat. he wanted to earn his place in our government on his own. he served in iraq. he took on institutions that are often too powerful for a lot of elected officials to take on or officials in government. talk to me a little bit about the sort of nature of sort of navigating a political career by moral compass. of trying to preserve some corner of integrity in what a lot of folks see as a democracy that has been sullied by moneyed interests and that is no longer accountable to the american people. >> well, that was never a question with beau. i mean the reason there were only two of us was we were taking on a lot of other people in government and the biggest financial institutions in the
country, and he just never hesitated. coming from delaware which is home to a lot of big corporations, he was subject to pressure. i was subject to pressure. but he never wavered. i just never had a sense that he was making decisions based on anything other than what was the right thing to do. he was a person of incredible integrity. people think that everybody's sold out. this is one guy who never sold out. he was fighting for the people he served. he did amazing creative work in setting up the delaware child predator initiative and went after some very difficult cases with that. and very close to his father, but definitely his own man. he called me up, and as you say, fighting with the federal government. at first, i didn't really quite know what to make of it. as i spent time with him, i got
to understand that this guy was someone who would do the right thing. no matter what the consequences were and no matter who he had to take on. i tell you, i was a brand-new attorney general getting into a fight with all the other attorneys general and the federal government, without his help and his guidance and his perseverance and total commitment to the project, i'm not sure he would have gotten it all done. he was just a warrior for the people. >> his passing is a great loss for our democracy. he was not your partner in crime, but of course your partner in justice, new york attorney general eric schneiderman, thanks for your time. >> thank you, alex. >> that's all for now. "the ed show" is coming up next. good evening, americans, and welcome to "the ed show." live from new york. let's get to work. tonight, senate showdown. >> rand paul is credited by both sides of this issue for gumming up the words. >> over government surveillance
under the patriot act. >> people here in town think i'm making a huge mistake. some of them i think secretly want there to be an attack on the united states so they can blame it on me. >> plus, he went there. >> you recently said you favor raising the retirement age for social security. to what age? >> 65 to 68 or 70. >> later, reality check. >> you had ed schultz said you were a great candidate with your experience in business. >> i will tell you i appreciated what ed schultz said and he happens to be right. >> and bernie brings it. >> citizens packing in here so many that cruz actually had to open one of these walls and expand the room for everyone to fit. so when do we use the word "interesting"? i guess right now. the 2016 presidential race is getting interesting. good to have you with us tonight, folks. thanks for watching. south carolina senator lindsey graham is officially off and running for president, to the surprise of many. graham kicked off his campaign