tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC May 26, 2011 1:00pm-2:00pm EDT
four days after joplin was destroyed by a killer tornado, 232 people have still not been found. as the death toll rises on 125, brian williams' heart breaking interview with a young woman whose husband gave his life to save hers. >> he got on top of me to take the brunt of most of it. and he's my hero. on capitol hill, republicans are trying to change the subject while democrats try to keep the focus on medicare. plus how should the u.s. deal with china? former secretary of state henry kissinger with us with his new book on china. and will she or won't she? a new speaking schedule, a new home in arizona. and a film debut in iowa. is sarah palin preparing to run? good day. i'm andrea mitchell live in washington today. we start with developing news on two big cases.
the supreme court has ruled on a law that started in arizona allowing states to he revoke business licenses for companies that knowingly hire workers who are here illegally. also on the legal front, a judge in wisconsin has knocked down that state's controversial ban on collective bargaining for say the workers. so pete williams joins us now live from the supreme court with it all. first, the immigration case, this is not the immigration case, but it is an important one in arizona. tell was the decision was and what the impact is. >> reporter: it is a big victory forred for advocates of tougher state laws. congress passed a law that says states can't punish employers that thoughingly hire illegal workers except through licensing. so this case is all about what did congress mean with that phrase. and what the supreme court said today is it allows the law in arizona which says that if an employer knowingly hires illegal
workers, the states can suspend and then revoke their license to do business. now, opponents of the law, the cha chamber of commerce, says this was giving startes the ability o impose the death penalty, but the supreme court upheld the law. the conservatives with justice kennedy agreeing with chief justice roberts, the three liberals voting against. elena kagan sat this one out. but it's not the arizona case. that law which says the police out there have to basically arrest or detain anybody they think might be here illegally has yet to reach the supreme court and, trafrankly, i don't think today's ruling is any kind of good news on that one. these are separate questions. but this does give a green light to states to try 20 to do what arizona has done in terms of
punishing companies and nine states have already follow this had particular course. >> and let's talk about wisconsin. it's a circuit court judge in wisconsin, but knocking down that ban on collective bargaining for state workers. still an appeal you think up through the state supreme court? rurt t >> reporter: the state supreme court said it will consider the question in about ten days. and if the proponents of this law had to lose, this was the way for them to lose because this was not on the question itself of whether the state could do that to collective bargaining rights of state employees. instead it was a procedural question of whether the legislature gave sufficient notice under the state's open meetings law. today a county court judge said no, the legislature didn't. the judge said it's not immune from the open meetings law. the legislature passed this what you for other agencies to live by, it has to live by it, 00. so this is not the end of the road for this question. >> pete williams on top of it
all. thank you very much on a beautiful day at the supreme court. and how to joplin, missouri where residents are not having a beautiful day. they are still struggling to come to grips with the fact that more than 300 of their friends, neighbor, relatives are dead or missing following last weekend's tornado. the weather channel's julie martin is live this joplin. what is the latest there? >> reporter: good afternoon. well, the devastation is vast and the cleanup just tremendous here in joplin. one of the most heartbreaking situations is the fact that so many people cannot locate hair loved ones. in fact we've learned within the past hour that 232 people are still unaccounted for after sunday's deadly tornado, the most deadly tornado on record in about 50 years. right now the hope is that maybe some of those people simply went out of town and did not tell anyone. and officials are asking that they call a special number that's been set up here in the
city so they can get a better handle of just how many of those people are in fact missing. so we are expecting the city and the state to release those names later on today. the list of the unaccounted for. but the death toll here still stands at 125. certainly and re search and december rue still taking place. they will look through all of the debris today and in the days to come. but it's a long road to recovery. >> we're talking about billions of dollars of losses to say nothing of the irreplaceable loss of life and friends and relatives. and the stories are just so heartbreaking. julie, thank you very much. meanwhile, at the g-8 summit, president obama is calling on america's allies to support democratic revolutions across the arab world.
chuck todd is traveling with the president. bonjour, chuck todd. >> reporter: bonjour. >> how are they doing? there's a lot to deal with there, the economic issues, the political issue, libya, to say nothing of the rest of the arab world. what is going on? >> reporter: where to begin. the president is rappi inwrappi meeting with the prime minister of japan where nuclear safety topic one in that conversation. then the wig woorking dinner wit started among all the nations of the g-8. and in those conversations, there's stuff at this g-8 that's precooked. the precooked stuff is new aid to egypt and tunisiand h. aand fledgling democracies. there has been a consistent
public comment when it comes to libya. behind the scenes we know that sarkozy and cameron would like to see the u.s. military role to be awmped up a bit, but publicl they're saying the onus is on gadhafi and they're abiding by the u.n. resolution and hope that this starts encouraging gadhafi to go. sarkozy's press conference has probably been the most interesting so far. a few things that came out of that. number one, much more aggressive tones when it came to assad in syria. he said the sanctions that everybody has put this to place, they don't seem to be working and they may need something akin to a u.n. resolution that they got for libya with syria. he was sort of hinting at that. second, not surprisingly as we've been noting, he was very supportive of the president's vision on the middle east peace
process between the israelis and the palestinians. he went even further when it came to hamas, he sees the unity government as a positive step, but he's also assuming that hamas is probably now -- they must now want to recognize israel. so i think it was one of those he was trying to kill them with kindness on that front. they're sending a diplomat there in the next week to try to get a firsthand look on that front. >> and what are you hearing about christine lagarde and the french push to retain leadership of the imf? is that a done deal or are there other candidates from other countries who are putting in their bids? south africa, in fact. >> reporter: well, you would have enjoyed watching the s sarkozy press conference. he was probably asked three or four different ways, it must be the big topic of conversation at the g-8. and he said we're not talking about it in the g-8 sessions. that would be inappropriate.
the g-8 isn't the place. but he said if you're asking me if we're having he's conversations in one-on-one meetings, if i told you we weren't, i'd be lying. so heed e he admits it's happening. he believe it is should be a european seat for now sbu open to the idea of in the future having perhaps a south american representative or somebody from asia to be on that seat. so he's clearly politicking behind the scenes. he all but admitted that he was doing that in these one-on-one meetings. but he really wanted to make su sure it's not happening at the g-8 several or so he was trying to claim. >> and of course sarkozy with terrible poll ratings back home, but now having the situation where his chief rival is of course stuck in new york and really for all intents and purposes no longer politically viable. >> reporter: you could see the spring in his step over this.
he was relishing every question he got about his pregnant wife. >> i can imagine. thank you very much, chuck todd. one day after the senate shot down paul ryan's entire budget, house republicans appear to be trying to change the subject issuing a new plan just a few hours ago. >> getting our economy going again is going to require us to reduce the spending, reduce the debt, to get the regulations out of the way to let american job creators create jobs. >> luke russert joins us from capitol hill. there's no real progress. they just keep voting them down. >> reporter: they have indeed. yesterday the senate voted down paul ryan's budget. but today what you're seeing in the wake of new york 26 is a real offensive by republicans to shift the message away from medicare where it has been this
week in their controversial plan to make it into a voucher system 20 try to make it -- to try to talk about a blow growth jobs agenda. today at a press conference, we were all handed the america's job creators, gchop plan, it's repackaged a lot of the older ideas including some that said any type of government regulation that could affect small businesses must be voted on in congress, free trade agreements with colombia, panama, also seeing things about patent reform, possibility about lowering taxes to money made overseas so people could bring that money here and invest in the u.s. all things republicans think will lead to job creation within the united states. not a lot of new ideas, but speaker boehner said these are ideas we believe can work. nancy pelosi is already dismissing them as the same policies of the bush administration that she thinks will not work at all and actually hurt the middle class. >> thanks very much, luke russert on top of it all.
and still ahead, is sarah palin running or just trying to make money? and back in the usa, james foley and claire gillis detail their six weeks of captivity in libya. send me your thoughts on twitter. [ male announcer ] bridgestone is using natural rubber, producing products that save on fuel and emissions like ecopia tires... even making parts for solar panels that harness the sun's energy... working on social activities
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breaking developments on the killing of bin laden. pakistan has agreed to allow the cia to send teams in to the compound where he was killed. they plan to search for materials that may have been hidden inside the walls or buried at the site. and the fighting continues in libya trapping civilians and journalists in the crossfire. president obama says the mission may take time, but he is confident that colonel gadhafi will ultimately be forced from
power. james follow sli a correspondent with global post and claire gillis writes for the atlantic. both were held for six weeks. we have so happy to see you safe and sound at home. and we talked to oo oor your fas while you were in captivity. james, it tell us what you experienced and what happened when you were taken captive. >> we were on the front lines in brega traveling with some rebel soldiers. and very quickly two gadhafi vehicles came over the hill and began shooting directly at us while the rebel vehicles were treated. we were pinned down. our friend, anton, a photographer, was in front of us. and he was hit. he yelled for help. the bullets were coming so fast, we couldn't get to him. and we realized very quickly if
we didn't surrender, we'd all get killed. so i jumped up, claire was wrought in brought in to a truck with me hands down. they quickly delivered us to gadhafi's hometown. >> claire, what were the conditions when you were being held? >> for the first six hour, we were really, we were really nervous because our hands were bound. it was clear they weren't sure what to do with us really. by the time we got to gadhafi's hometown, we were delivered into an actual military facility with cells. and from then on out, we were in a military detention center and we ended up -- the final three weeks were very nice surroundings. it wasn't a jail anymore, but we were still not pre-to leave. overall, the conditions were pretty decent i would say.
the only thing, we were just so nervous during the first six to eight hours of our capture. >> i have to ask you, because we were of course -- we were told by other women who have been held of really abusive treatment and terrible things that have happened to women. we know what happened of course in egypt to lara logan. did you as a woman experience anything that was inappropriate that was dangerous? >> you know, i was groped a bit. not very aggressively, not very professionally. >> so you were not assaulted? >> no, i was not. thank god. we were very worried about that. >> and overall, what is your sense of where this goes from here? how is gadhafi ever going to be dislodged? james, first to you. >> it was very interesting. i was in a political prison. and there was all young men and
middle aged and older men that had been captured from some of the different cities that are in the rebellion, charged with everything from sending text messages against gadhafi to actually holding guns. they believe strongly that once gadhafi fired on his own people, this regime must end and they will not accept any kind of deal in which his sons might retain you power. so there is a strong feeling in the west that eventually tripoli will fall, but as of right now, we know that -- and what we heard was only air strikes in tripoli. and not anywhere near enough air strikes to set gadhafi's military back yet. >> and the president and the prime minister, david cameron, reiterated again yesterday they will not be nato boots on the ground. they are not going to take that
step. claire, would you go back into a war zone? >> absolutely. absolutely. i'll be more careful in the future and i certainly have no immediate plans to go back to the front lines. mostly because i want to spend a lot of time with my friends and family who have been so tremendously supportive through this entire ordeal. and i'm so grateful to the people who helped. >> we are grateful ineat thatfu you're back. >> and you can go to free anton.org for raise some money for his family. >> thank you. we'll put it on our website, as well. and moving back to the united states, the tornadoes that tore through the central u.s. changed countless lives forever. brian williams talked with one woman whose husband shielded her when the tornado struck sacrificing his before to save hers. here's her story.
>> he covered you? >> he just has so much love in his heart. people keep saying that he wouldn't have wanted it any other way, but if i could have taken twice as much damage just to have him alive, i would have. he got on top of me to take the prunt brunt of most of it. he's my hero. >> brian williams will have a lot more on the situation tonight and more details on bethany and her story. and coming up next here, who wins and who loses if sarah palin runs? politico next right here on
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seems to be making waves out in the media, talking about the fire in her belly. i'm terrified to think that other people might do what i did and place too much faith in one person. >> frank bailey today. palin people say he was disgruntled, he was let go, he had all sorts of other problems, but we have yet to see where that comes down. now palin has bought a big house in arizona. she's reshuffled her staff and supposedly has an independent producer doing a two hour bio pic debuting in iowa conveniently next month. all this stoking speculation she may be running. what is your reporting telling you, molly? >> as suusual, her operation is
very tight knit and constantly changing. so a lot of tea leaf reading going on. we don't have a lot more than just these signals here and there which could indicate leaning toward a run or could indicate a little bit of restlessness, desire to assert herself back into that national conversation and be part of the political dialogue. >> do you think there's any interaction with the -- michele bachmann was supposed to go to iowa tonight. the fact that bachmann has been showing some signs. is that motivating palin to rethink it and see the field is wide open? >> yeah, i think they are competing for the same space among the complain primary electorate and if one gets in, it may be more difficult for the other. obviously two very similar political figures in terms of their tone and in terms their positions, both are seeing what
everybody can see. it's obvious that with mike huckabee out of the race in particular, but also with so many republicans passing on this race, there is a big opening for more candidates potential tloi get in will. >> thanks so much, molly. coming up next, senator patty murray, where is the democratic budget plan? plus inside the fight over medicare with kathleen sebelius. send me your thoughts. ♪
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elections? we're joined by the chairwoman of the campaign committee senator patty murray. thanks for joining us. >> minice to talk to you. >> a lot of people are suggesting there's been a failure of leadership, that harry reid doesn't want key votes or key tests on big issues because you've got so many endangered democrats who don't want to vote. >> i completely disagree. let's not forget that the president put forward his original budget plan in january. he later revised it because we all know we need to take some serious steps forward in terms of debt and deficit reduction. >> so what was that 97-0 vote against the president's budget yesterday? >> the republicans wrote the budget as the president originally put it forward in january which is where none of us are.
we're in the position of waiting for the biden commission to look at obama's proposal and the republican task proposal and come forward to us with a plan that we can move through the committee. but i think the lines are clear. what we saw in the republican past budget is that the republicans in order to pay for tax cuts for the wealthiest americans and pay for subsidies to oil company, they've madrasas tick cuts and changes to basic programs that americans rely on like medicare. and you saw an overwhelming democratic response to that is that is not what we're going to do. we believe that we have to be responsible about cutting the deficit, but we can't do it on the backs of seniors. >> is the new york 26th district, the victory there by the democratic candidate, is that going to become sort of the test case and medicare will become the issue that you all are running against in both house and senate races? >> clearly the race in new york
was about the battle lines that have been drawn. but i think it's also clear that democrats have made it very apparent to the public that we're on their side when comes to making sure we do a budget in a balanced responsible way and we don't say to the wealthiest americans you're cut out of this, you don't have to make any sacrifices. we're preserve an almost 30% tax reduction for you in order to -- and do it by cutting medicare and education and programs that are important to people today who are struggling in this economy and democrats are not going to go there. >> senator, where do you see the budget debate going in terms of the real negotiations? we heard yesterday for the first time really from the gang of five now that they have lost senator coburn. it's now three democrats, two republicans. and both sides saying that they really do believe that they can come up with a plan. going to be tough. a plan that can get 60 votes but has some very tough choices
because you know as well as anyone the republicans will have to accept big changes on taxes. and you democrats will have to accept more cuts on things that you really care about. >> i think democrats have told us responsibly and we all support that a move in a direction of understanding, we've got to tighten our belt like everybody else. we've done that. we did that with the continuing resolution that just passed. the second obama budget that came out that did that, we all understand that. but the budget debate now lies in the hands of vice president joe biden and that working group and they understand the lines are clear, that we can't preserve tax cuts for the wealthiest americans and increase the amount of money they get from the american public. they have to be part of the sacrifice here. we can come to that understanding, i believe we can move a budget forward responsebly. >> sthor penator murray, thank very much for joining us today. and now to our series be well, be healthy, we're joined pie by
secretary of health and human services, kathleen sebelius. i do want to ask you about medicare and the vote on the ryan plan. you had five republicans breaking ranks to vote against it. but at the same time, there are going to have to be big changes. bill clinton made it very clear yesterday that you can't have health care eating up the rest of budget and frankly the health law passed last year isn't going to be enough, that more has to be done. >> well, andrea, i think that president clinton is correct and president obama has said that there day one, that he's very willing to talk about some signature efforts to lower the underlying costs. whether we're talking about medicare or medicaid or the health budgets that are eating every business and family alive,
it's really the underlying health care costs. >> we've obviously lost that signal for a moment. we'll try to get it back momentarily. up next, former secretary of state -- well, secretary, sorry about that. we had the slight interruption. but continue what you were saying about the president's commitment to get to the underlying costs of the health care system. >> well, we talk a lot about the public plans, medicare and medicaid. but it's really the underlying health care costs that are also driving up the cost of private insurance and everyone is paying more and frankly getting mediocre results. so we have a lplat porm to not only begin making signature changes, but the president has put some additional ideas and we're very enthusiastic about looking at how we lower the per
capita spending on medicare and medicaid and actually improve care at the same time. we pay for way too much care and a lot of that health care really doesn't produce better health results. so there are a lot of strategies at play. what the congressional republicans propose is really just lopping off the amount of money we spend. so you fix the contribution, but you don't fix the underlying costs of care. and that really doesn't serve any of us very well p. >> and i wanted it ask you about the early education initiative, the $500 million race to the top early learning challenge. talk to us about why this is so important to reach these children and their families at a very early age. >> what we know and over and over again it's proven that early quality education is one of the best investments any say the, any federal goervernment c
mak. a lot of the brain science says those first three years are the most important in any child's life. so having high quality out of home laysments, whether it's child care other early head start or head start or a public pre-k makes sense. this is taking the race to the top concept, the concept that produced lot ofs of innovation, lots of great quality in k-12 education and putting it into the early childhood space. and secretary arne duncan and i are so pleased to be co-administering this program and recognize that for the youngest children, it's both about curriculum based education, but it also is about social and emotional development so a 5-year-old can sit and listen to a teacher, knows how to be in a group and play with friends, all of those aspects are critically important and this $500 million will give a great boost to state efforts which are already underway. >> it's a great initiative.
it tracks exactly what we've been focused on here with education nation with secretary do duncan it's great to see the two departments coming together. thank you very much. and up next, we will go to former secretary of state henry kissinger on the rise of china and what to do with gadhafi and everything else. this is andrea mitchell reports. [ male announcer ] this is james. the morning after the big move starts with back pain... and a choice. take advil now... and maybe up to 4 in a day.
for a society long separated from the rest of the world, china is now an economic powerhouse work to go address its own growing pains as the u.s. comes to terms with its new big competitor. former secretary of state henry kissinger is the author of the new bookcomes to terms with its competitor. former secretary of state henry kissinger is the author of the new book on china. welcome, thank you very much for joining us. >> good to see you. >> from your long experience, and you were of course responsible for the breakthrough
back in 1971 and '72 with re-establishing a connection on china, how startling is the change at you look back in this new book in the whole trajectory of china from your first experience to now? >> when we opened relations with china, it was highly underdevelopment developed country and it would never have occurred to anyone that it would be the powerhouse which it has become. so the change in economic conditions in china is unbelievable. there were no automobiles, of course no traffic jams, no high rises, no consumer goods. i could spend the whole time going over the list of things that have been newly created. >> but at the same time, the leadership looked forward, you saw positive signs, as well as
of course the negative signs in all of the leaders with whom you dealt. they were really struggling with both the external and the internal at the same time. from your writing here, you point out that china views the world very differently and they have a different test of a super power. how do you think china now views the united states especially after the economic failures of the last couple of years? >> the economic failures of the united states in the last few years have -- had a big impact because the chinese, even though they have had a different approach to foreign policy, used to think that the united states knew how to run the global economic and financial system. and that they had a lot to learn from us. and now since 2007, they have seen that our financial system is in crisis and at the
beginning they were in a similar crisis, but they overcame. so the confidence of the chinese in our ability to run things on the financial side has been shaken and that means they're more assertive in their object point of view. >> and we see that assertiveness in other ways, too. economically we see their investments in africa, south america, they really are buying up minerals, buying up properties all over the world. what do you think this foretells? >> well, i think china and the united states have a big decision to make on both sides. if the relationship develops into a confrontation, adversarial relationship, then tensions will get greater and greater and the outcome could be very serious. at the same time, it's in the
interests of both countries to work cooperatively on such things as environment, climate, nuclear proliferation, and to try to establish where they can work along parallel lines rather than confrontational lines. i think that's what theed a hin strags administration is trying to do and i believe that part of it -- that that's their effort, also. that is the big challenge before us. >> you've also written some would say too sympathetically about some of the crackdowns. >> no, i'm not sympathetic with the crackdown. >> i know you're not sympathetic to the crackdown. i shouldn't have phrased it that way. but you said they view it as a necessary evil to deal with domestic turmoil. >> the problem was this. those of us who have been on the
opening to china knew that he turned into a great reformer. all the market reforms were brought in by ping. then as a result of the reforms, many other forces were liberated and that led to the unfortunate and unacceptable events of tiananmen square. but nowhere in the book do i defend what was was termed -- what i believed what eight american administrations, eight american presidents have believed, that relations between china and the united states are central to peace and progress in the world and that therefore we should try to overcome difficulties that aricarise.
>> do you think china will have to open up on the intellectual and political front, that they will have to yield to the changes that are transforming the world, or do you think that the economic strength of the regime and what it is delivering to its people will balance these demands for freedom of speech and political freedoms? how do you see that evolving? >> they have already opened up on many fronts. the front they haven't opened up is criticism of the government p but the economics and the discussion on issues other than the one i mentioned is relatively open. but as the economy develops, they have to be accommodate sod that i expect over the next ten
years we will see an opening of the chinese system to some considerable extent and that's what they say they want to accomplish. so we're not talking about a static situation, but it is a different society with different backgrounds and it will move to its own and not to americanisms. they have had a self government for 4,000 years, they have been in the present conditions as a state for 2,000 years. so it's not as easy to transform chinese society as it is in our country which has had much less of a negativity of the past. >> may i just ask you about the
important news today thof the arrest and extradited to be tried to war crime charges. he was the most wanted man in europe. responsible we -- he was the m wanted man in europe and responsible, we believe, he has been accused of being responsible for the genocide in the '90s and particularly the deaths of 8,000 men and boys. how important is his arrest? >> i think it is a great victory for the principle of human dignity and human rights, and that the killing was one of the genocidal acts and it shows that serbia is coming completely back into the european community and so i think it is a very helpful
development, very positive sign. >> and we thank you very much, henry kissinger. the book is "on china" and it is an extraordinary memoir by the man who engineered the break through back in 1971. thank you very much. thanks for being with us. >> it's a pleasure to be on. and we have new developments on the front of politics concerning sarah palin, a possible run for the white house. that's coming up. be sure to follow the show online at andrea.msnbc.com and on twitter. patch. it blocks pain signals for deep relief precisely where you need it most. precise. only from the makers of tylenol.
the political story that's going to be making headlines in the next 24 hours is clearly sarah palin. msnbc contributor is chris cillizza. we know she's going to be launching a bus tour. this was first broken by realpolitics.com and the bus tour is going to start this sunday in washington and heading up the east koeps coast of hist sites.
is she really considering it? >> you never know with sarah palin. i will say though she is the kind of person who hasn't visited the early states that a traditional political candidate would do, but this is a re-emergence. it comes after the news of a two-hour film going to be released in iowa next month about her rise in politics. a bus tour being billed as a listening tour. this has the look at least of someone who is thinking more seriously about running. i would still say though iowa, new hampshire, south carolina. she has to go to those places, she has to put staff in those places. she can't simply rely on being a well-known name and a well-liked name in certain elements of the party. that does not get it done. these people want you to be there in their living rooms courting them, and she's not shown a willingness to do it. i should say yet. >> yet. we'll have more on this on "nightly news" and tomorrow again. this does it for us for this edition of "andrea mitchell
reports." tamron hall has a look at what's up next. >> we will have more on sarah palin and this bus tour we have learned she will launch. and we're learning that a cia team will return to pakistan. they plan on searching osama bin laden's compound where he lived and where he was killed. perhaps critical information hidden in the walls of that building. plus, the supreme court upholds the controversial law in arizona that would punish businesses for hiring illegal immigran immigrants. we'll have the details next for you in a few minutes on "news nation."
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developing now on "news nation," victory for jan brewer and supporters of arizona's immigration law. the supreme court rules in favor of a key part of the law that severely punishes businesses for hiring illegal immigrants. plus, chalk it up as a win for unions. a judge strikes down the law that stripped bargaining rights from workers in that state. and a sad raeld.