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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  January 25, 2012 6:00am-9:00am EST

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with a side of naz. >> that's why we picked that song.tweet@morningmusiq. @morningmusiq. you put in requests. i have the greatest tweet i've ever received in my hand right here. this comes to us from bear-i-11, i woke up to the tv and realized my chin was stuck to my other chin from the gummy bears i had in my mouth last night. that is a new one. we've never reached that demographic, now we have. if you have a photograph of this, we'll put it on the air immediately. "morning joe" starts right now. the state of our union is getting stronger. and we've come too far to turn back now.
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as long as i'm president, i will work with anyone in this chamber to build on this momentum, but i intend to fight obstruction with action, and i will oppose any effort to return to the very same policies that brought on this economic crisis in the first place. >> on these evenings, presidents naturally seek to find the sunny side of our position, but when president obama claims the state of our union is anything but grave, he must know in his heart this is not true. all right. good morning, everybody. here we go. it's wednesday, january 25th. welcome to "morning joe." with us onset, we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle. nice to see you, mike. you look nice today. and chairman of deutsch incorporated donny deutsch is here, as well. >> what's going on, donny? >> look at him. >> that's my -- >> he's an ad guy. >> he is. >> i'd love to know what he
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thought. the marketing guy. >> i thought it was a wonderful speech. >> it was america the beautiful, baby. >> you thought it was wonderful. >> pledge of allegiance, it was all there. the few versus the many. that's all it. and all you had to see was the republican response to know that the republicans are in a corner. if deficit reduction is going to be their answer to fairness, they've got a problem. >> well, there you go. >> i wouldn't say taking care of the debt is an answer to fairness, it's an answer, though, to -- >> you're right, but -- by the way, when you're a guy who says, hey, look, 4 million jobs lost before i took office, 4 million before my policies took place, 3 million new jobs, i put a bullet in the bad guys' head and isn't it time we get fair as a country and relive the american dream? it's hard to argue. >> well, before we start fighting over -- >> yeah, i'll put you down as undecided. >> i thought the moment with gaby giffords was great. >> both when she entered on her own and this moment with the
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president right here. it's the moment of the night without question. >> you know it -- it was very moving moment. and you couldn't help but look at that moment and think about how far she has come over the past year. it's just remarkable. that she was able to be in that state of the union last night. >> it's incredible. she looks incredible, and, you know, everybody should take a moment and just get a sense of priority when you see something like that. that is really hopeful to see her. wish her the best for sure. >> why don't we get into the speech and get reaction? >> yeah, the president's off to cedar rapids, iowa, this morning where he's going to continue to hammer home the theme of economic equality, in what was his third state of the union address. discussing economic recovery at home, president obama said the nation has come too far to turn back now. he cited his grandparents'
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success stories after world war ii as an example of the importance of economic fairness. >> they were contributing to a story of success that every american had a chance to share. the basic american promise that if you worked hard, you could do well enough to raise a family, own a home, send your kids to college, and put a little away for retirement. the defining issue of our time is how to keep that promise alive. no challenge is more urgent, no debate is more important. we can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well while a growing number of americans barely get by. or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot and everyone does their fair share and everyone plays by the same set of rules.
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>> he was in fine form. the president used his address to push forward on tax reform with a plan the white house has dubbed the buffett rule. that is named after warren buffett who criticizes the current policy which he says allows his secretary to pay a higher tax rate than he does. that secretary was among the first lady's guests for the speech. the president suggested the equality comes down to a basic choice. >> do we want to keep these tax cuts for the wealthiest americans? or do we want to keep our investments in everything else? like education and medical research, a strong military, and care for our veterans. because if we're serious about paying down our debt, we can't do both. the american people know what the right choice is, so do i.
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we need to change our tax code so that people like me and an awful lot of members of congress pay our fair share of taxes. tax reform should follow the buffett rule. if you make more than $1 million a year, you should not pay less than 30% in taxes. now, you can call this class warfare all you want, but asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? most americans would call that common sense. >> is that common sense? >> well, i -- we don't want to really get into the details about how -- >> no, not that. >> how that 15% is paid on top of -- >> a federal -- >> an already corporate tax. most people that look at these
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numbers say by the end they're paying 46%, 45%, 46% on if you add the 15% on what they've already paid before. whether it's a personal income tax rate or a corporate tax rate. but that's not as soaring in a punch line i have found in political speeches. so, mike, what did you think of the speech overall? >> i thought that he probably could give the same speech in charlotte at the democratic national convention later this summer. i thought it was the outline of a very strong campaign. >> yeah. >> but most of all, i was really struck by how the political landscape has changed in less than one month. january 3rd, the iowa caucuses, last night's state of the union, january 2nd you'd be saying, boy, the republicans have these guy on the ropes. today, you look at what the republicans have done to themselves and you look at his performance last night in that speech. look, going forward, you can pick apart a lot of individual items, but that was a strong -- >> and he's in a strong position. >> does everybody agree that was
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a political speech last night? >> so is every state of the union. >> not every state of the union, but every state of the union in the campaign year usually becomes this. and that's every president whether it's george w. bush or bill clinton or before him george h.w. bush. but, willie, last night's speech reminded me a lot of the type of clinton speeches we got going into his reelection in the second term. a lot of smaller items. with clinton it was school uniforms. things that -- i mean, this was a very tested speech, every line was poll tested. but the practical impact of this is going to be negligible. it sounded great, and good small items in there. but at the end of the day, it's not going to transform washington. >> it was rhetorical -- rhetorically, it was a great speech. if you can start a speech by saying i killed osama bin laden, ended the war in iraq, and saved
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gm -- all true on his watch. but as you said, when he talks about unity and getting things done this year, that defies the reality of what's happened for the last three years. why should this year all of a sudden let alone in an election year are we going to tackle these big issues now? >> that's what's brilliant. he's an incumbent running on change. and getting back to the american dream. and i think the other thing that although you say there's nothing dramatic that's going to happen from the state of the union, which i agree pretty much with every state of the union. there's what i call the gestalt factor. you don't stop at that word now. when you just look at the backdrop of what we see in the debates and continue to see in the debates, not only a negativity, but a questionable competence and then you see a guy who gets the stage in a matter he is able to have it as the president, and this is going to continue. boy, he is really, really set up
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for future success. >> well, i would say you can say what you will about newt gingrich and mitt romney, you cannot question their competence. we're not talking about herman cain and some of the other candidates that -- >> no, either one of these guys seem really fit to lead? >> i'm seizing on your competence -- >> i'm defining competence as if you just landed from mars and you watched -- it's a little bit unfair -- >> let me go to mike. i agree that the president looks great compared to his rivals right now. especially since as erick erickson's saying, they are tearing each other to shreds in florida. it's two pit bulls going after a raw piece of meat. and the longer primaries go, i've said it here, the stronger the candidate becomes, but in this case it is becoming so personal, so self-destructive, that the president just looks like a -- >> i've been in a couple of different places since i was
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here a week ago, and i have to tell you, my instinct is, it's almost immeasurable the damage that newt gingrich has done to the republicans. almost immeasurable -- >> why do you say newt gingrich? you could go back over a guy who was a front-runner who quotes pokemon who is ill-equipped to answer questions about syria. i don't want to knock these candidates that are already out of the race, but i don't think you can just point to newt gingrich on this front. and i'm not defending him. i think it's scar tissue over the year of a republican primary that have had that lot of pretenders, a lot of jokes. >> there's no doubt about that. but i say newt gingrich specifically because he is the candidate that republicans mention to you when they talk about their chances in the fall. saying things like, you know, look, i want president obama out of there. i want to vote for a republican. but if it's newt gingrich in the top of that ticket, i'm voting
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for obama. anecdote anecdotely, it's overwhelming. everyone knows nothing will get done. you also come out with the feeling, the strong feeling that that is barack obama's trump card with this country. that i could say, you know, free bottled water, a glass of milk, and a peanut butter sandwich for every american every day, republicans are going to say no. >> we're going to hear a lot of that today in certain quarters. but if i'm sitting in that congress, and i've been talking about congress needing to work, and he doesn't mention the debt, first of all. >> right. >> which i believe is the key long-term issue in this country. first of all, secondly he talks about program where we're going to use more federal money that we don't have to keep people in houses they can't afford. that's the second proposal. and then the third proposal is you're talking about raising
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taxes in a time right now in a time of an economic downturn. i'm sorry, i'm going to -- >> raising taxes on the few. >> yeah, the few. >> an election, the majority. and long-term, people don't vote on long-term. >> you believe in raising taxes on the few as you say, people that already pay 36% of the income tax in this country despite the fact they make 16% of the money that 1%. if i'm sitting there, mike, what am i supposed to agree on? as a conservative? again, i'm not knocking the president, i'm not knocking the speech, but i'm not being an obstructionist for not going, hey, let's do three things i think will be really bad for america. >> in terms of getting republicans to agree with him on. hep didn't give you much specifics in terms of let's do this together. >> what about -- let's go through, first of all, do you think we should spend more federal money we don't have to keep people in houses that even
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barney frank says they can't afford? >> no, no. >> do you think that those people should be thrown out on the street? let's turn the question around. because that's the question. >> well, here's the deal, if they can't pay a mortgage -- >> uh-huh. >> if the federal government is supposed to bail them out for not being able to pay a mortgage. and let's say as mike has said before a lot of these people haven't paid a bill in what? two years? >> over a year -- year and a half, two years. >> well, yes, yes, i do. and it's tragic, but i don't think the federal government's job is to step in and keep people in houses that they can't afford. >> well, i would say good luck with that. because people are not the only part of the problem. >> you keep them in houses they can't afford for how long? >> okay. >> they overextended, mika. here you are, the personal responsibility person saying you've got to eat right and don't waste -- oh, don't go to
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the mall. >> i think -- >> let me finish. and that's okay and i'll let you talk. but then when people make a huge mistake and overreach in the days, in the guilded housing age of george w. bush's era, you're saying, well, you made a terrible mistake there and we're going to make the people that are paying all of their payments every month pay to keep you in a house you couldn't afford in the first place. is that what the federal government's supposed to do? >> well, because many of these people were taken advantage of -- >> perhaps they were. >> in a system that spun out of control and greed overtook it. and this president is trying to clamp down on -- >> whose greed? these were forces of human nature in play here during the housing crisis. people want the big house. >> that's true. president clinton started a program where everyone -- >> many of the institutions that gave them the mortgages that were corrupt are gone. they're gone. they're out of business.
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>> but there are still people here left holding the bag. >> now you have the choice. as president of the united states, do you tell the department of justice to call shawn donovan at housing and to get all of the big banks and the big mortgage lenders, get them all down here, put them in a room and take care of this thing, which they have not really done. they work on things incrementally and then you've got a sordid numbers of state attorneys general, and you tell me, mika, i'm on your side here. you tell me the last time any situation got resolved once you threw it into the courts. it doesn't get resolved. >> speaking of institutions. the fact that he also threw in the insider trading thing in congress. he's running against congress. it's another tough place to come down from. i mean he -- as you said, there was a lot of small in there, but when you add it up into the fairness doctrine. >> mika? >> well, i think the speech overall, though, responds to whether it was planned or not, but it happens to respond to the
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politics of the situation right now and the republican candidates just being the very dark counter to what now is a hopeful speech. >> you say a dark counter from your world view. >> no, actually -- >> i don't think mitt romney is a very dark counter to anything. >> i think that right now he looks like the 1% -- >> i don't think rick santorum is a very dark counter. i think rick santorum is a good guy. >> okay. >> i mean, a good guy, i disagree with him on a lot of issues, especially the harshness of some of his social issues. but he's a good guy from pennsylvania, grew up in a blue collar family. i just don't think you can paint all republicans with one broad stroke. >> i'm not. i actually was talking about the candidates and how the president is positioned pertaining to the candidates. >> you said they were a dark alternative. >> pertaining to the overall situation this country is in, i
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think he addressed it, and it was -- it may not change washington today, but it certainly may be the beginning of his path to reelection. >> willie, i want to put my comments this morning in perspective very quickly. one, i think it was a good speech. >> yep. >> for the president. two, it was a political speech like most of these speeches are political speeches. three, i understand why he did what he did. i'm not knocking what he did. and if i were his adviser, i would suggest he do the same thing. there's nothing devious about what the president did. but my only counter on these three things that i brought up is the fact that everybody just assumes that the republicans in the national media are obstructionists because they don't merrily roll along with what the president presents. i think the president's economic program in the long run is devastating to this country's well being. that's my personal belief. obviously -- that's what's so great about america. usually the way the system works is he thinks the same thing of my ideas, we meet in the middle,
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we compromise and something happens. but just to say the republicans are obstructionists for going along with what they think are bad ideas is missing the point. >> you get one idea, another idea, meet in the middle, there's been no meeting in the middle. on mika's point, he clearly last night staked out his ground. mitt romney, that day yesterday morning released the tax returns showing he paid 14%. >> there was that. >> the state of the union. so here was the president -- >> talk about bad timing. >> here was the president making the case as middle class warrior saying you want to call this class warfare, republicans, i think this is a question of fairness. when mitt romney is paying 14% and his secretary's paying whatever she's paying, that's not fair. that was gift-wrapped. >> mitt's people thought, donny, they were going to bury this. and in fact, all they did was --
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i mean, it was -- >> can i one more time say -- can we stop demonizing mitt romney because he's a successful capitalist? >> i agree with that. >> the guy plays within the rules. >> he does. >> and back to your point. just we can answer this question throughout the morning, but listening to my dad last night talking about the threat of the disparity that we see in our society and how that's kind of eating into our ability to lead globally, what are your ideas in terms of how to fix that? because the president at least is addressing it. >> i talk about it every day. it's not having the federal government go in and keep people in houses they can't afford. the first thing we do, we have to clean up our own house. we've got to make sure we can keep the program sustainable. we are facing a debt crisis of just of monumental historic proportions. and this president didn't bring it up one time. first you clean up your own house, okay? and we've got to clean up our own house. >> this is a messy house. >> for 30 years we've been spending we don't have, putting
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new programs in place we can't afford. and last night, the president presented a lot of new programs. now, i understand, democrats think that's a great idea. i say, you know what? let's figure out how we pay for the programs we have right now that are driving us toward bankruptcy before we add others. that's -- >> makes sense, it's just not going to get you elected. >> i think it will. one day, donny. >> one day. >> one more remarkable line before we go. you talked about a political speech and playing to the middle a little bit, the president, barack obama said this. i believe what abraham lincoln believed, the government should do for people only what they cannot do better by themselves. and no more. sounding like ron paul. >> i mean that is a classic bill clinton, the era of big government is over. now let me tell you my 25 federally funded programs we're going to present in this year's state of the union. no, it's both sides -- >> i'm going to help you out, joe. my 13-year-old sent me three pages of notes on the speech
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last night. you can read it. >> that was like a really low blow. >> looks like she wrote the speech herself. wow. >> she typed it up. all right. coming up. >> this is impressive. dick durbin, eric cantor, dr. brzezinski. >> she's quoting lincoln in this. >> she took notes. >> and bob woodward. also, a developing story involving navy s.e.a.l.s and a hostage rescue for an american kidnapped in somalia. but first, here's bill karins with a check on the forecast. good morning, mika. beautiful day in areas of the country, we're dealing with almost spring-time weather conditions. tornadoes possible in texas, and a tremendous amount of rain from san antonio all the way up to dallas. the worst of it right now on i-35 right around austin. some historic flooding ongoing. about 4 inches of rain in the last 2 hours. and that will head toward houston later on today. not quite as beautiful today in
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areas of the east, but still very nice. can't complain with temperatures in the 40s this time of year. southeast looks nice today, but that rain will move in for you tomorrow. minneapolis, little chilly, same for you in chicago, still damp weather in the northwest and beautiful around l.a. overall, still doesn't look like winter out there. more of a springtime forecast. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
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time now to take a look at the morning papers, 26 past the hour. in the "new york times," there's word that navy s.e.a.l.s have pulled off a daring nighttime mission to free an american and danish relief worker held hostage since october.
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gunfire broke out as the s.e.a.l.s entered the compound. the s.e.a.l.s grabbed the hostages and flew them to safety. no word if any americans were wounded in the mission. the two hostages, including 32 american jessica buchanan are said to be in relatively good condition. president obama was the first to tip off the rescue mission when he openly congratulated defense secretary leon panetta prior to his state of the union speech. >> good job tonight. good job tonight. >> wow. moving on -- >> unbelievable. >> another one, huh? >> you know, a lot of people watching and hearing this thinking, rah-rah, whenever the military does something. but part of it gets to the president's speech last night. this country needs a confidence boost. and things like that help. i mean, we are the greatest country in the world. we are the country most concerned with freedom around
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the world. we don't talk about enough, we don't talk enough about how good we are around the world, and internally, domestically -- >> there were two things. that little moment made you feel so good. and it wasn't calculated. but the president, good job, you know, we got the right thing. and even seeing the entire chamber. and you can take these things for granted, but what a great country this is. >> what a great country. and you look at the military. the absolute best that we have. >> mm-hmm. >> they get things done, unlike our politicians in washington, d.c. that were talking and listening last night. the military actually works together and does great things. >> and that was how the president closed the speech. >> and opened the speech. >> but he closed it about the navy s.e.a.l.s. he didn't know if they were democrats or republicans, they got together. >> and from our parade of papers, the wisconsin state journal says governor scott walker is shattering the state's campaign fund raising records. walker has brought in $12
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million from the beginning of last year, nearly $5 million of that coming in the last month as his opponents plan to launch a recall effort against him. and donny, going to you as far as advertising, i have said this before, this recall effort launched when scott walker had a higher approval rating in wisconsin than president obama. it goes back and forth. and i was saying the unions, first of all, are wasting their money that they're going to need in 2012 on a personal vendetta. and secondly, scott walker may not like it, they're doing him the greatest favor in the world. because what they're allowing him to do is raise a lot of money and frame the debate in his way, and he's going to win, and all they're going to do is they're going to help him half way through this term get ready to get reelected. they have played -- it is one of the stupidest strategies i've ever seen. it's a personal vendetta and i understand it, but they are playing in the long run. >> i agree. and i also think they're tone deaf because the country doesn't want destruction, they want
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construction. and the guys -- you can disagree, but to carry the guy out of the office because of it, is not what we're about. >> basically saying what chris christie is saying is we want unions to pay more and we're going to try to do what indiana and other states have done. i think they're playing into his hands. >> he admits he went too far, and has pulled back since. let's turn to politico. with us now, mr. mike allen with a look at the playbook. good morning, mike. >> good morning, guys. >> we talked about what the president said last night. let's talk about what he didn't say. what were the headlines for you coming out of that? >> well, the architecture of the state of the union was different from what we're used to. usually the state of the union is half domestic, half national security and foreign affairs and the press always speculates about which half is going to go first and what does that say about the president's priorities? here you had a speech that was almost all economy and there
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were quite a few dogs that didn't bark including israeli palestinian peace negotiations, the anti-piracy legislation where the president took silicon valley's side over hollywood. the simpson/bowles commission on the deficit. the president barely mentioned health care, two references in passing. high-speed rail wasn't mentioned. and not mentioned, the president's slogan from his last state of the union. remember winning the future? moved on from that. >> and he kind of said that a different way. are you surprised he didn't mention or embrace parts of it in this speech? >> you know, we've talked about the fact that republicans say that if the president were to embrace the tough measures in simpson/bowles, it would really take away a lot of their arguments. i will tell you, the e-mail i've been getting from republicans is they say this was a very strong speech that this president did
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not fall into some of the traps that he has in the past of villainizing wall street. and republicans say they're more worried after -- about their chances of beating this president after watching the speech than before. >> all right, mike. we've got to get you in on this. we got some new polls from the state of florida. showing newt gingrich making a move upward there after his primary win in south carolina. this is among likely voters in florida. this is before the south carolina primary -- >> oh, wow. >> this was before. last week. mitt romney with an 11-point lead. now if we move forward to the one we got in after saturday -- >> oh. >> that's not good. >> that's the same poll. >> gingrich at 40% with mitt romney sliding down to 34%. mike, what's your take there? >> huge momentum -- >> i love mike barnicle's response there. >> he can't contain himself. >> we should get you a mitt pin you can wave. >> mike, what do you think?
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>> yesterday in florida, we saw newt gingrich getting thousands at two of his events. raised $2 million in two days. he's got another fund-raising appeal out now. casting himself as the conservative, mitt romney is the moderate. and the biggest sign of confidence by newt gingrich is he's talking about obama. he like mitt romney did for so long, he's looking ahead to the general election. bragging in his fund raising letter, i can win the nomination. >> can we discount polls a little bit when they swing 20% in one week? maybe polls aren't what they used to be? 20 points in a week? it doesn't show that every week -- if we track the polls in the last year, the seismic shifts are to me demonstrate that clearly people don't know which way they're going. so let's understand that. >> but the polls are accurate snapshots. i think what's remarkable is that gingrich was low in florida, then he surged into the
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40s, then went back down and surged back up. i suspect by the end, mike, i don't know what you think, this florida race may be really close. >> well, they finally found -- the gingrich people finally found the picture of mitt romney and ted kennedy. >> are they using it now? >> yeah. it's devastating in the 60-second ad. >> mike allen, and newt gingrich got a ton of money in a super pac to go on the air throughout florida. >> after he used the last super pac money to attack bain capital, people wondered would the las vegas millionaire -- would he give him more money? he sure did. signed up $5 million more is going to allow newt gingrich to buy strategically in florida. they don't think they need to match mitt romney dollar for dollar, they just have to be smart about it, be in the conversation. >> and six days until the florida voting. mike allen, thanks so much. we'll talk to you soon. >> have a great day. up next, we saved the real
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analysis of the state of the union for our next segment. >> what? >> this is great. >> chad ochocinco. >> he live tweeted the president's address and it's as great as you think it is. hey guys, breakfast! ♪ [ female announcer ] if whole grain isn't the first ingredient in your breakfast cereal, what is? now, in every box of general mills big g cereal, there's more whole grain than any other ingredient. that's why it's listed first on the side. from honey nut cheerios to cinnamon toast crunch to lucky charms, get more whole grain than any other ingredient...
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i also want to thank my teammates. -- no. throughout the year, especially derek jeter who helped me stay focused and positive. thank you, buddy. hopefully you won't miss me that much. mario, my brother, i don't think we would have any of those without you.
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>> that's yankees catcher retiring after a 17-year career. he was one of the guys at the beginning. won those five championships and now he's retiring. >> he knew when to go. he could've stayed another couple of years. >> had a tough season last year and knew it was time to walk away. >> he did. he knew sox were going to win ten in a row. >> do it again this year. they're going to be great this year, aren't they? crawford's going to be back. he'll have a better season. >> jorge pasada is a good person. he's not a hall of fame catcher, but a good human being. >> he's on the borderline. >> so am i. >> i know. let's talk about -- let's talk about football meeting politics a little bit. >> yeah. >> patriots' wide receiver ochocinco getting ready for the super bowl, finding time to squeeze in a little political analysis. >> what? >> this is great.
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>> six-time pro bowler tweeted after asking followers what time it started. ochocinco tweeted. not being rude but if they stand up and clap on every statement obama says, this could go well over three hours. he tweeted, anybody notice the guy over obama's left shoulder doesn't seem happy and he's not smiling? he's not clapping with joy. one of ochocinco's followers explained it was speaker john boehner over the left shoulder. that prompted ochocinco to tweet the house speaker directly. hey, just read some of your tweets, you seem pretty angry, kind sir. i can see you on tv, but you're not smiling, hope you're okay. ochocinco closed by calling the president's address awesome while wondering, "how did he manage to memorize so much material?" >> just stop. >> that explains why he's had like one catch in the last six months. >> hasn't had to show up for
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most of the games. coming up next, ezra klein joins us for the must-read opinion pages. keep it on "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. is it fast? it's got 10 speeds, my friend. ♪ is it fast? it's got a lightning bolt on it, doesn't it? ♪ is it fast? i don't even know if it's street-legal. ♪
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we don't begrudge financial success in this country. we admire it. when americans talk about folks like me paying my fair share of taxes. it's not because they envy the rich, it's because they understand that when i get a tax break i don't need and the country can't afford, it either adds to the deficit or somebody else has to make up the difference. that's not right. americans know that's not right.
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they know that this generation's success is only possible because past generations felt a responsibility to each other. that's how we'll reduce our deficit. that's an america built to last. >> time now for the must-read opinion pages at 46 past the hour. and here with us now, columnist for the washington post, and msnbc contributor, ezra klein. good to have you on board. >> all you need to know about the state of the unions and how little they matter is by reading a tweet that you said -- you tweeted last night. most of it -- >> a very profound line. >> most of these could be delivered by a republican and republicans would clap for them, and in an election year, democrats wouldn't. now it's a democrat saying these things and republicans sitting on their hands. >> yes, it could have been a couple of years ago, mitt romney saying we need a health care bill with an individual mandate. saying we need a cap and trade
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bill. most of the speech with the exception of probably the buffett rule elements, some of the corporate taxation stuff. most of the speech was in that way designed to sound very bipartisan, very acceptable. and probably was. if it had been a republican president, most would've liked that. >> very poll tested. and you said also made a point that i made earlier, it was more of a clinton-esque laundry list more than a narrative. this sounded like the type of speech bill clinton would give in his second term. >> the kansas teddy rooz vel speech, that had a lot of intellectual scope, a lot of narrative to it. it was not that speech. they did not bring any of that to the table really. it was policy, policy, after policy, after policy. you think he has a lot of clinton's same staff, and clinton's state of the union speeches worked. when gallup went back and looked
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at the state of the union speeches over the last 30 years, clinton's were the single largest polling. >> they drove us crazy because he would sit there and go on for over an hour and we'd say he said nothing! school uniforms, what are you talking about? and the next day, his numbers would jump in the polls -- >> writers hate clinton speeches, that's not how they would write it. they want a narrative arc, a speech that goes into the rhetoric history books. the american people like to hear about what government might do over the coming year. >> he did talk about bringing down the deficit, by the way. the "new york times" and the "wall street journal" both responded to the president's state of the union. here's the "new york times" take. mr. obama hasz become steadily more assertive, but he will have to push even harder. the state of the union was a chance to do that and he did not squander it. over the last year, americans have become more aware of the deep inequities in the economy and of the government's responsibility to act.
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mr. obama deserves some of the credit for that. but it has a lot more to do with the unrelenting tough times and the efforts of occupy wall street and other proest tests. what americans want now is strong political leadership. >> let's do the "wall street journal." >> the state of his policies. normally a president at the start of his fourth year would be running on his record, accentuating the legislation he has passed, mr. obama can't do that with specificity because the recovery has been so weak and the legislation he's passed is so unpopular. last night he took credit for the shale gas revolution he had nothing to do with and proposed new policies to spread the wealth around. as he famously told joe the plumber in 2008 before he took the words back. we thought he meant it then and now he's admitting it. that's the "wall street journal's" take. >> different view. >> i didn't hear it exactly the same way. he did a fair amount, for
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instance, whether you think he deserves it or not of taking credit for an economic recovery. that is as a whole the union is getting stronger. i feel like in these speeches there's a tendency for people to brush it aside. but these were big policies. what they proposed on corporate taxation, to have a minimum tax for multinationals. if they get that before congress, it'll be a big fight. don't underestimate, an agenda that will be followed over the next year. that is what state of the unions are for. that's why they're vetted by every executive agency. so there's more here than the narrative. and, in fact, i think the narrative here was de-emphasized as opposed to the agenda. >> donny? >> i still think the one take away that is tough to beat is fairness. he's running on the fairness doctrine. and as you said and, joe, you pointed out, there was a lot of small ball things along the way, but i don't know how the republicans have an answer to both the fairness doctrine and
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his positive tone. that's what's so amazing about -- there's nothing defensive about him. it's like he's a new guy running. >> you just sounded inspired. >> by the way, yes, but also the best thing as according to a lot of us -- but as you watch the republicans, you just see this happening. i mean, it's right before your eyes. television is a wonderful medium. >> you're saying compared to eating mud, suddenly the gruel was looking appetizing -- >> i think that everything is relative. >> i am certainly not comparing the president of the united states to gruel, let me say that for the record. it is funny listening to you six months ago and listening to you now, it seems hope and change -- >> even i, a cynical media watcher -- >> come on. >> this type of -- >> you knew you were going to come home. everybody always comes home. >> we all come home. we're going to come home. >> willie's news you can't use is next. for fastidious librarian emily skinner,
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>> announcer: you should not take reclast if you're on zometa, have low blood calcium or kidney problems, or you're pregnant, plan to become pregnant or are nursing. take calcium and vitamin d daily. tell your doctor if you develop severe muscle, bone or joint pain, if you have dental problems-- as jaw bone problems have been reported-- or if you develop new or unusual pain in your hip, groin or thigh. the most common side effects include flu-like symptoms, fever, muscle or join pain, headache, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. if you have questions about your current treatment, ask your doctor about reclast. oh, yes, is it time, willie? excellent. >> news you can't use. >> it's amazing. >> last night's state of the union, very serious. very business like. they did squeeze in one joke. >> oh. >> usually good group of young, funny guys over at the white house. >> he likes his jokes. >> the white house correspondents, always funny. >> how did it go? >> here's the joke.
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>> i've ordered every federal agency to eliminate rules that don't make sense. we've already announced over 500 reforms. we got rid of one rule from 40 years ago that could force dairy farmers spending $10,000 a year proving they could contain a spill because milk was somehow classified as an oil. and with a rule like that, i guess it was worth crying over spilled milk. now -- >> the first lady -- the first lady's like, i'm not giving you that one. >> he's adorable. >> that was cute. >> c span cut away cameras caught utah republican congressman there, giving the old rim shot. there he is after the joke. >> oh, well. he knew it. i thought it was very endearing. >> i'm surprised. they're a funny group of guys
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over there. not their best moment. >> he's singing, telling jokes, feeling good. we're going to look back at some of the great republican responses to the president's speeches, including michele bachmann last year and bobby jindal. >> i love that. up next, tom brokaw joins the conversation, bob woodward, and dr. brzezinski back with us this morning. keep it on "morning joe." [ todd ] hello? hello todd. just calling to let you know i'm giving you the silent treatment. so you're calling to tell me
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investments in everything else? like education and medical research, a strong military, and care for our veterans. because if we're serious about paying down our debt, we can't do both. the american people know what the right choice is. so do i. we need to change our tax code so that people like me and an awful lot of members of congress pay our fair share of taxes. tax reform should follow the buffett rule. if you make more than $1 million a year, you should not pay less than 30% in taxes. now, you can call this class warfare all you want.
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but asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? most americans would call that common sense. >> welcome back to "morning joe." mike barnicle and donny deutsch are still with us. and tom brokaw joins us now as well as bob woodward joining us from washington this morning. gentlemen, welcome. >> tom brokaw, most importantly, back from san francisco. you spent time in candle stick park. >> i did. i was doing a story on jerry brown, the california economy, what they're doing out there, and i had some business in san francisco and happened to find my way to candle stick park. which is not easy. it may be the worst stadium in -- >> who won that game? >> donny, we've got to catch up. it's 2012. >> go giants. >> and candle stick's terrible because of what? >> they had two crooked roads to
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get in and then it's very crowded, the seats are not very comfortable, and wind and rain comes in on a regular basis. it can be a clear day everywhere else, but it rains in candle stick park. >> when they played baseball out there in the middle of the summer. >> 1962, stu miller got blown off the mound during the game. >> bob woodward, how do you think the president did last night? >> you know, if i -- just a little context, i was thinking how the persuadable voter might look at last night and the nbc debate this week because the persuadable voter, somebody who is not decided is independent. and it starts kind of with the gingrich routine the other night where if you look at gingrich's history of the 1990s in his telling, he kind of locked arms with bill clinton and they balanced the budget. of course, the persuadable voter
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knows that what happened in the '90s is bill clinton raised taxes over gingrich's strong protest, and clinton made the deal with the federal reserve to keep interest rates low. and then gingrich kind of comes along and says, oh, by the way, i'm a historian. i guess he occupies the distinguished learning center fannie mae, kind of the seat of self-focus, and, you know, the persuadable voters looking at this and saying, wait a minute, this is not true. and i think then the voter who has not yet made up his mind or her mind looks at romney and says, okay, this is a businessman, this is somebody who made $20 million each year
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on investments, the average person looks at the bank statement and says, apology, i made $1.24 on my bank account last month. it doesn't quite square. and then they look at romney and kind of say he's presenting himself as somebody who was governor of massachusetts and did all of these things, and he's not quite talking straight about how he had been governor that he was, you know, he was not the governor in mississippi or alabama, but -- >> so my guess -- >> he had to compromise. >> i guess -- i guess that's your round about way of saying the president did very, very well last night. >> doesn't stack up, as well? >> well, you know i'm not so sure. because, again, i'm looking at it from the perspective of somebody who hasn't decided. obama's speech was a little dreamy.
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very, very intense, very optimistic, very reaganesque, but the average person is looking at that and saying he's beating up on the rich person, i like that, but what's in this for me? >> right. >> what is going to make the economy better? and that was not clear. >> hey, bob, i was reminded -- tom, tom, i was reminded of bill clinton '96, '97, '98, where he'd give these speeches that were a laundry list of everything. and we would laugh and say that is the biggest nonsense we've ever heard in our life. and then the polls would come out the next day and these type of speeches work. these laundry list -- >> what would you know about this president is he can deliver a speech. if he delivered that speech a couple years ago, he might be in a different place now. whether he would have been able to work with the republicans. but my own impression is having gone all over the country is that the voters are out there
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now and looking at not just president obama, but at newt gingrich and mitt romney and the others who are contesting for the republican nomination are saying show me the money. >> right. >> show me the money. i've heard a lot of rhetoric. >> where's the beef? >> i want something i can put my hands on. i've just been in california as i indicated a moment ago, and jerry brown is going to go to the voters this fall and ask them to raise taxes on themselves on the wealthy. they've cut the deficit in half, there are some -- if not light at the end of the tunnel out there, there's a little glow going on. good news in california, unemployment is now down to more than 11%. these are the kinds of issues we still have to deal with, and housing has a piece of it. but he does know how to light up an arena, and it doesn't hurt to have congresswoman giffords there at the emotional moment at the beginning because that opens the heart of people. >> he must have been pumped up
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about the navy s.e.a.l. mission. >> he's had good news. i want to follow up on what tom and bob said, and that is a voter at the end of the day -- and i know this may shock a lot of people, but they're looking at the president, they're going what's in it for me? and so -- this fairness issue that resinates with opinion page editors and resinates with activists and resinates with a lot of us on tv, at the end of the day, may not resinate as well with working class americans who will -- >> why does it -- >> who will say, okay, great. talk about fairness all you want, i want you to tell me specifically, how do i get back to work? how does talking about warren buffett's taxes get me back to work? yes, i hear 15% doesn't work, and then i hear republicans and others saying, well, actually -- and steve rattner saying, well,
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actually it's 46% if you add what they paid. and how does that get me back to work? fairness in and of itself -- >> it's not fairness, it's basically saying right now you at home, you are paying too much compared to the other guys in taxes, they're going to pay more, that's going to help the deficit, that's -- >> who's paying too much? >> the average guy. it's all relative. >> the average guy is not paying too much because about 47% of americans don't pay any income tax at all. and, again, all i'm talking about -- i'm not talking about the fairness of the tax code. i'm talking about what tom and bob talked about. at the end of the day, you've got to connect with the guy sitting there watching tv. the woman sitting there. >> i think -- >> pure sentiment doesn't do it. >> that's not what he's saying. he's talking about american values, the core of this country. >> american values are great. how does that get me back to work? >> my logic if i'm at home. i go you know what?
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i want to get back to work. i think if he gets those rich guys and they throw more money into the pot, somehow that's going to be better. >> the rich guys who own the jobs that i want to hire me. >> it doesn't -- >> by the way, i promise you i've had a dad that's been out of work, most people out of work don't think that way. >> he's addressed that -- >> manufacturing energy, whether it's real or not, he's giving more positive direction than any of the other guys on the other side. >> bob woodward -- no, i see it resinating well with us and other people. bob, i don't know that resinates with people that are out of work. because at the end of the day, it's stripped down. and this is the way george w. bush won in 2004, by the way. because at the end of the day, people asked the question, for the age of terror, who will keep my kids the safest? they didn't care about anything else. they asked that gut question, the question they're asking today is, who's going to get me
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back to work? >> i think that's right. and, again, this persuadable voter is looking at that may be out of work but also may have a lot of anxiety about the future and is going to ask the question, how is the president or whoever might take his place going to harness that magnificent power in the presidency so concentrated to fix things in a very measurable way. and if you can't measure it, it's dreamy, it's vague, and so i think kind of the bottom line you come out of the events of this week, and it's still up for grabs. obama has not won, and it's not clear what the republicans are going to do. and there has not been that -- and it's not about a laundry list of small things or big things. it's -- and this is what bill clinton was really great at.
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i feel your pain or i feel your anxiety. i'm tuned into you, and i'm going to do something to help you. >> okay. and there were some flourishing lines there that didn't have a lot of detail. but what tom brokaw, do you expect in the state of the union address that's supposed to address the entire state of the union? and he i think went from a to z in terms of the key factors that really affect people today. jobs, he talked about the deficit, we can't say he didn't when he did. and also the disparity that people are feeling out there. >> well, listen, in an election year, a state of the union address is essentially a campaign statement. what he's trying to do is set the map for next fall and get his version of events out there and in high school debate they call this defining the terms. and he's trying to define the terms of this debate. and back to joe's point whether out of work workers will look at somebody who has that lot of money like mitt romney and
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resent it. i'm not sure that's always the case. i always think the people aspire to have that kind of money at some point in their lives. i do think in this climate, however, that a lot of people ask the question, how can he know what i'm going through? if he made $21 million in investments last year, how can he feel in any sense in trying to get my mortgage rearranged, trying to find a job. i've been furloughed twice, i'm getting half the pay i used to get. i'm looking at my kids, their future which i thought was pretty secure now is up for grabs. >> and, mike, any time anybody makes a statement that just sort of blurts out, it is more damaging if it reinforces an existing stereotype about the candidate. mitt romney's taxes, mitt romney's income, mitt romney's tax rate would not be as devastating politically, i don't think.
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wouldn't even be bad politically if he were so tone deaf on issues like his taxes. if it didn't take him five times to get it right on how many taxes -- >> welm, all, also acting as if embarrassed. well, look, the larger point that tom, bob, and donny to some extent -- >> no -- >> no, don't throw me in that high- high-esteemed group. >> tom knows this well. the country is -- think of it as largely a three-legged stool in terms of values. there's the fairness factor, the achievement and opportunity factor. people have always felt those have been out there looking out through their american window and the life beyond them. one of the big differences, i think, that has happened, and you picked this up from watching people. if you were 15 or 20 years of age and your parents were sitting around the kitchen table, you knew who the wealthiest people were in the town or city where you lived, but you also knew that maybe you
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had a shot to get some of that wealth going forward. today, you know who the wealthiest people are in the town or the city you live, but you think, i think, that the system is rigged against you getting there. >> it's a fantastic point. >> that's a big difference in the last 20 years. >> so you look at what the president has tried to do and listen to the speech last night based on the economic disparity and compare back to mitt romney and the point that you were making. and it's not just how much money he makes, it's politically how he handles it. >> you look at that guy -- >> i know what it's like to be unemployed. i like to fire people. oops, i didn't mean to say it that way. don't take it out of context. i made $360,000 a year in speeches, but that's not that much money, it's an average of $40,000 a speech, and most people average south carolinian makes $40,000 a year. this is a big problem. >> let's talk about the mechanics of it. i was talking to a prominent
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republican over the weekend who was stunned by the size of the gingrich victory and then we began to talk about mitt romney. and he said when you start a campaign -- and we've seen evidence of this throughout this campaign -- there are certain fundamental questions you try to get cleared up, joe, when you're running for president. anything in your personal background we ought to know about? herman cain, no, i'm fine. mitt romney, you're a wealthy man, we're going to have to release those tax returns, your father did that. he now waits and stumbles and stammers around in the debate and waits until the day the president is going to make the state of the union speech to demonstrate how much money he made and how little he paid in taxes. how clumsy is that? just from a purely mechanical point of view. >> right. >> as a campaigner. >> and let me go to bob woodward really quickly. and bob, this is what's causing a real crisis in the republican establishment. there has been a belief for the past year that mitt romney is
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the presumptive nominee. he is the "most electable." over the past week or two, not just because of the gingrich victory but because of all of the unforced errors by mitt romney and his team, now that myth is being shattered. and suddenly it is game on. and you've got republicans looking at two options that they just don't like. >> i think that's quite right. and if you go deep into the republican establishment or the renegade wing even. there's a lot of hand wringing because no candidate has emerged with, you know -- and it's not necessarily that they're winning. but with that kind of straight talk message that is simple and direct, this really gets, you know, when you start talking about all of the details of romney's tax. i agree with tom brokaw, the handling of that is just so
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inadequate for, you know -- he's supposed to be this magnificent businessman which means he's a manager. well, that's something you manage. it's kind of one of the first steps. and they managed to throw this into the ring. so you have the story of obama saying we need to tax these people more on the basis of fairness. example "a" is mitt romney. >> guys -- joe, you just said a word like. there's another thing we're also discounting. at the end of the day for different reasons, the american public is never going to like mitt romney from that majority point of view or like newt gingrich. and -- oh, but for different reasons. gingrich -- when was the last time we elected an angry president? and when was the last time we elected a president people didn't connect with. >> you are making so many
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presumptions based on geography. you living on the upper east side. no, no -- >> despite what happens with his policy, people like barack obama. >> i promise you. i've been hearing this morning that all republicans are unlikable. i've been hearing the "dark alternatives." let me finish. let me finish. the dark alternatives. i'm hearing this all morning. let me tell you what's going to happen if mitt romney wins the nomination. and tom, you've seen this time and time again. you know what? the door swings wide open and you start to learn the things about mitt romney like things that mitt romney can't say himself. and i will give you a great parallel because everybody always talks about tom, oh, he's like john kerry, no, he's like george h.w. bush who in 1988 was called a wimp, everybody's first husband, he was derided, and out of this, tom, you started reading these remarkable stories about george h.w. bush the war
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ho hero, george bush, the man who dared to stand up and make courageous votes on civil rights in houston, texas, when nobody else would, et cetera, et cetera. these i think i know mitt romney enough to know that this clumsy, awkward politician has a pretty inspiring life story to talk about that has nothing to do with making all the money, it has to do with what type of father he is, what type of husband he is, what type of man he is personally. >> well, that in combination with how you define your opponent, as well. jim baker who is helping george bush's long time friend run that campaign talks about being on a camping trip with michael dukak dukakis, they were down 18 points deep in the wilderness at the time, they came out of there and knew they had to do two things. sell the george bush story and define michael dukakis and who he was. and then they got an enormous amount of help from michael dukakis himself in that famous
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debate in which he was asked about how he would respond to the murder of his wife and he said he was still opposed to capital punishment and made it like a legal brief. it was the most clinical description you could possibly imagine. and you can see the flip going on at that point. we've got a long ways to go. >> a long ways. >> there'll be a lot of changes. stick with us. still ahead, dr. brzezinski joining us on the set, also dick durbin on what the president's state of the union address means for the next year in congress. and up next, from the other side of the aisle, house majority leader eric cantor joins the conversation. >> are you going to be able to handle that, donny? >> "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. [ tires screeching ] an accident doesn't have to slow you down.
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the state of our union is getting stronger. and we've come too far to turn back now. as long as i'm president, i will work with anyone in this chamber
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to build on this momentum. but i intend to fight obstruction with action. and i will oppose any effort to return to the very same policies that brought on this economic crisis in the first place. >> hey, with us now, we've got -- no, no, this one is tom and bob and i are going to carry this one. >> all right. >> with us now, majority leader and republican representative from virginia congressman eric cantor. very good to see you. >> hello, eric. >> hello, mika, good to be back on your show. >> nice to have you. >> that's the last you're going to get to talk to him. >> what was the best part of the president's speech last night for you? >> i think clearly the reference to the military is something i think all of us got up off our feet and saluted, applauded. i think that is the unifying point in the speech. i think there was another point in the speech too where you saw a pretty clear unanimity.
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i don't know if it was all the way there, and it was on the issue of iran and the threat posed to our interest by that country. >> what about the president's specific programs? for instance, the program to keep people in their homes? if they can't pay their mortgages. what's the republican response to that? >> well, it mean, obviously, the housing crisis continues to linger. and there are a lot of reasons why you can look to that and say things that should have been done differently. but you know, i'm worried that the president's proposals actually cost something, and i'm not sure how it's going to be paid for. he did mention some kind of tax to be placed on financial institutions. you know, again, there's no free money out there, i think we've seen that. and, look, joe, the bottom line is overall, this economy could be doing a lot better. and the reason why we're not doing better is the policies that have been promoted by this president and the white house haven't worked. and what our point is as we
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continue to try and focus on the issue of economy and jobs is we've got to try something different. i think most people when they determine something doesn't work, they try something different. and instead of focusing on new programs out of washington, on new things this government can do, why don't we focus on the private sector and growing small businesses? because that's where jobs come from. >> tom brokaw? >> congressman, he also talked last night about improving the skill set of american workers and talk to manufacturers, they say that's a huge need. there are a lot of jobs that are open, they don't have the workers who have the skill set to fill them. the president last night talked about the role of the federal government in making more of that kind of training possible. is that a place for the republicans and the democrats can get together even if it involves some additional federal funding to kick start this very, very critical program? >> i don't think there's any question that, yes, we can work together in trying to focus on
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how we get people back to work, how we go and provide an ability for people to retrain so that we can meet the needs of the employers and the jobs of the future. there's no question about it. the president also mentioned the issue of immigration. and he specifically referenced the high-skilled workforce that could be available to this country to help create jobs by those who come here to study in our masters and ph.d. programs that are having difficulty being able to keep a job here because our antiquated immigration laws keep them out. >> do you support that? >> another issue we can work on. >> yes, i do. >> and do the republicans support what tom friedman has always said that if you have somebody from another country getting an advance degree from a great college, you give them the degree, flip it over and create new jobs. that was one of steve jobs' biggest complaints, he didn't
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have enough high-skilled workers. do the republicans and house of representatives support that? >> they do, joe. it's part of the agenda. that specific measure. i was glad to hear the president talk about that. and he referenced the fact that the kinds of immigration reform that he would like to see may not make it through the process, but at least we can do some things that we agree upon. that's one of them. >> hey, eric, i'm going to ask you now from my point of view. i'm going to put you on the hot seat for a second. and instead of focusing on the president's programs, which i think we can't afford right now, i want to ask you, what will this house republican leadership do put in place by tea party members in large part last year, to stop the united states federal government from going another $1 trillion in debt in 2012? your first year we had problems with the government shut down, we had problems with a couple of other showdowns with the president of the united states. and at the end of the first year
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of house republicans being in charge, another $1 trillion was added to the deficit. i understand yesterday was the thousandth day, i understand that the president of the united states wants to spend more money, but what can you do to stop another $1 trillion being added to the national debt? >> first of all, joe, you referenced a lot of tension that occurred last year that we talked a lot about. and the root of that tension has to do with the fact that we do hold the majority in the house. and we've come here really to affect change. to stop the trajectory, stop the spending of trillions of dollars that we don't have. and so the difficulty came in that there couldn't be agreement. the white house and the senate did not agree with us on the fact that we believe you've got to fix the real problem which disproportionately falls into the area of health care
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entitlements. we get the numbers. i mean, the numbers are every day 10,000 people turn 65 and become eligible for medicare. every day. the problem is, that program gets its support and moneys from premiums and taxes that people pay in, but that flow of revenue only covers a little over half the cost of that program. so every daytimes 10,000, you are that much further in the hole. we've got to fix that. >> the numbers don't add up. it's not about ideology, it's about math. >> math doesn't lie. >> i know another thing the congressman liked about the speech. >> what's that? >> before he goes. >> mentioned the word debt 18 times. and i'll pose a question to you since you won't let me ask it. >> he didn't say bowles/simpson. congressman, eric cantor, thanks for being with us. >> good to be on. >> there is just this split in washington, d.c. i mean, it's a system that our founders set up. >> i think that what we're going to see in the next nine months
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really, joe, some stuff done on the margins. the big core issues. it's very, very unlikely to get that done because that's all about the fall quite honestly. and i'm very interested in the worker training program because that's a big issue across the country from the ground up and the bottom down. community colleges, i've been saying if you can invest in them, go long because they're exploding across america. >> yeah. >> to teach young people the new skills they need for the modern workplace. i was out in south dakota. they've got -- i know you'll find that hard to believe, but they've got two vo-tech schools, they can't turn out fast enough. and they're going to work as soon as they get the job. and they want people with real computer skills. no longer just the strong hands and good pair of work boots. >> thanks for that. stay with us. we'll be right back. >> dr. brzezinski coming up. ♪
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all right. dr. brzezinski, my dad, is standing by in the green room. he's next with more on his new book "strategic vision," plus more with tom brokaw and bob woodward when we come back.
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america is back. anyone who tells you otherwise, anyone who tells you that america is in decline or that our influence has waned doesn't know what they're talking about. yes, the world is changing. no, we can't control every event. but america remains the one indispensable nation in world affairs and as long as i'm president, i intend to keep it that way. >> wow, more from the president's state of the union speech last night. and joining us now, former national security adviser for president carter, dr. brzezin i brzezinski. he's back, he's the author of the new book "strategic vision." america and the crisis of global power. and what a great question. what a great sound bite to dovetail to our first question because i don't think you would agree that america is back.
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>> america may be coming back, and there's no doubt that america's standing in the world today is better than three years ago. in that sense, there's an improvement because we reached three years ago. how far this goes depends on how we recover economically and how we deal with the world outside. and that is still an open question. the president mentioned the number of problems such as the middle east, iran, china, and so forth. well, if we handle this well, we will be back and we will be preemine preeminent. and if we don't, our position in the world will decline. it's as basic as that. >> dad, we were at the barnes and noble at union square last night. and i think there are a lot of people concerned about our strategic vision. if you looked at the crowd we had that was standing room only. a wonderful audience and a lot of really good questions about the direction of this country. and one of the things you talked about is a word that is kind of hard to take, hard to swallow
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for people in this country. be you talk about the threat or the concern you have about ignorance in our society. >> precisely. and i think that bears not only in domestic issues, it bears very directly on our foreign policy because we are a democracy. and a democracy can only have the foreign policy that the public endorses and supports. i think in an age in which there's a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty, there is a tendency toward demagoguery, extremism, and so forth. so when the president talks about our role in the world, i think he's right in saying that we are important, we're needed. but how we conduct ourselves depends on how much freedom of action he has and how decisive he is. for example, you mentioned the middle east. well, he was committed to breakthrough in the middle east in the first year. we're now entering the fourth year. and we still don't have it.
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so everything depends on delivery on how we conduct ourselves and how much popular understanding there is for a rational, meaningful, historically pertinent foreign policy. >> bob woodward's in washington. bob? >> hi. it sounds like a great book. one of the questions i ve is, isn't it a particularly difficult time to be president and manage the foreign policy of this country? because as the president said, on one hand, we -- or he views us as one indispensable nation. in other words, we're on top. on the other hand, he's enough of a realist to -- and he said, the world is changing dramatically. so we don't have the upper hand all of the time. and so it kind of -- if you look at the last three years, he's gone from one side, oh, yes, we are on top to, oh, no, we are
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not going to manage all of these affairs. so psychologically he's in a back and forth that i suspect makes it more difficult even when carter was president. >> i think you're right. it's more difficult because we're now living in a time -- we discussed this last time we met. we're living in a time in which there is a lot of -- which was the situation that emerged after the end of the cold war when the united states was really dominate. we now have three sort of economic centers in the world. the united states, but in some domestic difficulties, although the president i thought very skillfully fashioned a commitment to capitalism with a human face. i think this is what he was really talking about. then there is europe, another major economic center, but with enormous internal difficulties. and then there's china as the emerging new economic power, the
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number two. it's much more difficult to manage the world in that context. we are still supreme militarily. but that's a diminishing source of constructive influence because the wars in recent years have shown us that there are limits to the use of military power, and wars have a way of lingering and becoming very costly and unpredictable. so the situation is infinitely more complex than in the past, and while it's important to be optimistic in that difficult setting, one mustn't mistake optimism for a comprehensive judgment as to how effective we're going to be in dealing with the world's complexities. >> tom? >> tom brokaw? >> dr. brzezinski, what are the chances of creating new grand alliances? we know that the old european/american access has been greatly diminished because of europe's economic difficulties, but the world has changed profoundly, as well. what are the chances the united states and china can get together on north korea?
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what are the chances that the united states and russia can get together on iran? >> i think you've raised a basic question, and that's a question i try to address in the last part of my book, namely, we need a significant global realignment. and essentially i advocate a close american european connection, that is still essential. we and europe share the same values. unfortunately, we're dramatically diminishing security forces. if we and the europeans can work together, we can i think succeed in enticing turkey and russia to be part of the west, especially as russia democratizes, which will probably happen after putin. that is then a revitalized west. and in the east, the united states has to be actively engaged in the asian problems. it has to be involved in the pacific, on the basis of our alliance with japan, but work closely with china, try to have a relationship with china that's
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reciprocal and respects china's emergence in the world, and try to promote a japanese/chinese reconciliation the way we did it with the french and the germans, and try to mitigate indian/chinese hostility. essentially play the role that great britain played in the 19th century vis-a-vis europe. balance, offset, mitigate, but don't get involved in ground wars on the asian continent. >> is turkey the most underappreciated country in the world in that part of the world these days? >> i think turkey is probably our most important democratic ally in that region of the world which is so volatile today. and it is an example to other islamic countries that you can be democratic. you can be responsibly defined in religious terms, but without fundamentalist orthodoxy. the turks were promised
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membership -- that has gone slowly, but you can have links without necessarily being right away a member of the union without the stringent demands. so yes, i think turkey's very, very important and it's key right now to stability in the middle east in terms of egypt, in terms of syria, which is becoming a problem, egypt as a potential imitator of what the turks are doing. >> mike barnicle? >> doctor, we have as you know a lot of political people in this program. we just had the house majority leader on, eric cantor, and they speak in terms of the political issues we face. nearly everything is political, but you're one of the few people we have on that talk about the cultural aspect of life going forward. there was a very important piece in the "new york times" on the front page on sunday about the iphone in china. and there was some devastating elements to that piece that give you the impression that here's an america that the chinese are going to be able to continue doing what we used to do here in
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this country and that we have no chance of catching up to their capacity to manufacture items because of numerous reasons here in the united states. so in terms of the culture of this country and the confidence of this country and who we are going forward, are there any real solutions? >> depends what you're seeking with the solutions. if it is a restoration of the status quo and particularly that it's to restore the situation that emerged after the fall of the soviet union, when the united states preeminent, dominant, that i don't think can be recreated. because i don't think china's going to disappear just to please us. and i don't think we can outbid the chinese in some respects. but i think a relationship with china in which we're both guided by a recognition of our reciprocal interests in a stable relationship, by recognition of the fact that we'll both suffer if we get into hostile conflict
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i think is possible, especially if we do some of the other things i've mentioned in the far east so that our role in the far east is seen as constructive. a. what i fear is this enormous pressure in this country to demonize the chinese to blame them for all our own shortcomings, with the effect that the chinese will reciprocate in kind, and then we'll get into a situation which is classical, namely hostility between major powers, a rivalry perhaps with unpredictable consequences, with each side eventually feeling all options are on the table. i don't want that repeated. we have time for one more question, bob woodward in washington? >> real quickly, sir, one of the things i found in my research is obama just does not like war. he deeply believes that it is
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really the manifestation of human folly, but he talks tough. the question is, is he tough enough on these issues that he would -- he's done some things, but if it got to the crunch, would he use the military and dare to get involved in another war? >> well, look, the tests so far suggests that he's willing and able to make tough decisions. for example, the decision to go after osama bin laden involved risks. it would have been much easier to blow up the place and announce he's dead, but it wouldn't have had the desired political effect, because the evidence wouldn't be conclusive. he took a chance and he succeeded, but being tough means you're also consistent, that you don't just pick tough when it's politically expedient. you have to prove it's related to some sort of larger strategy. i don't think, for example, starting or supporting the start of a war with iran proves you
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are tough. i think it proves you are short-sighted, because we know in recent experience that wars tend to last longer these days, because it's not easy to crush a resistance that's poplarly endorsed and we have f values that prevent us from yew weapons of mass destruction. i would be very wary about translating toughness into a willings in to plunge into war. it means consistency across the board in seeking your political objectives and using all your leverage, not announcing a policy and backing off when someone opposes it. >> dr. zbigniew brzezinski.
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and tomorrow night we're headed to philly. >> it will be sold out again. it's amazing. >> it is, it is. they have a lot of people coming. a conversation and book signing -- he's going to pre-sign them. tomorrow. bob woodward thing you very much. >> thank you, bob. we'll be right back. ♪ he was a 21st century global nomad ♪ ♪ home was an airport lounge and an ipad ♪ ♪ made sure his credit score did not go bad ♪ ♪ with a free-credit-score-dot-com ♪ ♪ app that he had ♪ downloaded it in the himalayas ♪ ♪ while meditating like a true playa ♪ ♪ now when he's surfing down in chile'a ♪ ♪ he can see when his score is in danger ♪ ♪ if you're a mobile type on the go ♪ ♪ i suggest you take a tip from my bro ♪ ♪ and download the app that lets you know ♪
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tom, final thoughts on the president's speech last night? all right. [ laughter ] >> i couldn't have said it better myself. >> final thoughts on the -- >> the giants will win on the super bowl. >> i've never seen it before in my life. >> i think it's come together at the right time for them in the right way. at the end of the season they have momentum. it's going to be a great game. it will be very close. >> the giants lost four games in a row -- >> lost four games in a row in november. as i said, i was at the game and went back to the hotel, and the doorman was giving me a bad time about being a giants fan and i
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had a big hand on my shoulder and it was peyton manning, and we laughed and shook hands. i said, would you believe having lost four in november november that they would be on the -- and he said it's amazing. >> good recoveries. we'll be right back. on my , i've learned that when you ask someone in texas if they want "big" savings on car insurance, it's a bit like asking if they want a big hat... ...'scuse me... ...or a big steak... ...or big hair... i think we have our answer. geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance.
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work with anyone in this chamber to build on this momentum, but i intend to fight obstruction with action. i will oppose any effort to return to the same policy that is brought on this economic crisis in the first place. good morning. it's 8:00 op east coast, as you take a live look at new york city. back with us on set mike barn cal and donny deutsche. >> it was one of, the few versus the many. and all you had to see was the republican response to know the republicans are in a corner. if deficit reduction is going to be their answer to fairness, they've got a problem. >> well, there you go. >> no, i wouldn't say taking care of the debt is an answer to fairness. it's an answer to economic meltdown. >> but when you're the guy that
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says 4 million lost before, 4 million before my policy took place, we put a bullet in the bad guy's head, isn't it time to get fair with the country? it's hard to argue against that. >> before we start fighting -- >> i'll put you down as undecided. >> i thought the moment with gabby giffords was beautiful. >> both when she entered on her own and this moment with the president. the moment of the night. without question. >> it was a very moving moment. you couldn't help but look and think about how far she has come over the past year. it's just remarkable she was able to be in that state of the union last night. >> it's incredible. she looks incredible. everybody should take a moment and get a sense of priority. that is really hopeful.
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we wish her the best, for sure. >> why don't we get into the speech and get reaction. >> the president is off to cedar rapids, iowa, where he's going to continue to hammer home the theme of economic equality, discussing economic recovery at home, president obama said is the nation has country too far, quote, to turn back now. he said his grrnd parents ease success story as an example of the importance of economic fairness. >> they were contributing to a story of success that every american had a chance to share. the basic american promise that, if you worked hard, you could do well enough to raise a family, own a home, send your kids to college, and put a little away for retirement. the defining issue of our time is how to keep that promise alive. no challenge is more urgent.
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no debate is more important. we can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well while a growing number of americans barely get by. or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot and everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same society of rules. >> he was in fine form. the president used his address to push forward on tax reform, with the plan the white house has dubbed the buffett rule, named after billionaire warren buffett who criticizes the current policy that he says allows his secretary to pay a higher tax rate than he does. that secretary was among the first lady's guests for the speech. the president suggested a chance for economic equality all comes down to a basic choice. >> do we want to keep these tax cuts for the wealthiest
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americans? or do we want to keep our investments in everything else? like education and medical research, a strong military and care for our veterans. because if we're serious about paying down our debt, we can't do both. the american people know what the right choice is. so do i. we need to change our tax code so that people like me and an awful lot of members of congress pay our fair share of taxes. tax reform should follow the buffett rule. if you make more than a million a year, usual not pay less than 30% in taxes. you can call this class warfare
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all you want. but asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? most americans would call that common sense. >> is that common sense? >> well, i -- we don't want to really get into the details now how that 15% is paid on top of an already corporate tax. i mean, most people that look at these numbers say by the end they're paying 46%, 45% 46% if you add the 15% on what they've already paid before, whether it's a personal income tax rate or corporate tax rate, but that's not as soaring a punch line as i've found in political speeches. mike, what did you think overall? >> he could probably give the same speech in charlotte later this summer any democratic national convention. i thought it was the outline of a very strong campaign, but most of all, i was really struck by how the political landscape has
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changed in less than one month. january 2nd you would be saying, boy, the republicans have this guy on the ropes. today you look at what the republicans have done to themselves, and you look at his performance last night in that speech. look it, going forward, you can pick apart a lot of individual items, but that was a pretty strong view last night. >> and he's in a strong position. >> does everyone agree that that was a political speech. >> so is every state of the union. not every state of the union, but every -- that's every president whether it's george w. bush or bill clinton or before him george h.w. bush, but willy last night reminded me of a lot of clinton speeches we got. a lot of smaller items. with clinton it was school uniforms, things that -- i mean, this was a very tested speech.
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every line was poll tested, but the practical line will be negligible. it sounded great. there were good small items in there. some items i disagreed with, but at the end of the day it's not going to transform -- it's not going to change washington. >> rhetorically it was a great speech. if you start with i killed osama bin laden and saved gm, that's a pretty good speech. when we talks about unity and getting things done that defies the reality. why should this year, all of a sudden, will we tackle big issuesisms that's what's brilliant. he's an incumbent who's running on change, and getting back to the american dream. although you say there's nothing dramatic that's going to happen from the state of the union, which i agree pretty much with every state of the union,
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there's the gestalt factor, not only a negative, but a questionable competent, and then you see a guy who gets the stage in the matter he's able to have it as the president and this is going to continue, boy, he is really set up for success. >> i would say, you can say what you will about newt gingrich and romney, you cannot question their confidence. we're not talking about herman cain and some of the other candidates. >> do either of them see fit to lead. >> i'm seizing on your confidence. >> i'm defining it as if you landed from mars, and it's a little unfair comparison -- >> let me go to mike. i agree that the president looks great compared to his rivals right now, especially since -- eric erickson is saying they are
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tearing each other to shreds in football. two pitbulls going after a raw piece of meat. the longer primaries go -- i've said it here, the stronger the candidate becomes, but in this case it's becoming so personal, so self-destructive that the president just looks like a -- >> i've been in a couple different places from when i was here a week ago. it's almost immeasurable the damage that newt gingrich has done to the republicans. >> why doi say just newt gingrich? you can go back over a guy who was a front-runner who quotes pokemon, who is ill-equipped to answer questions about syria. i don't want though go back and knock these candidates that are already out of the race, but i don't think you can just point to newt gingrich on this front. god knows i'm not defending him. i see think it's scar tissue
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over the year of a republican primary that have had a lot of pretenders, a lot of jokes. >> no doubt about that, but i say newt gingrich specifically, because he is the candidate that republicans mention when they talk about their chances in the fall, saying things like, look it, i want president obama out of there, but if it's newt gingrich on the top of the ticket, i'm going to vote for president obama. anecdotally it's overwhelming. the other thing you pointed out, you know, it's a great speech, but everyone knows nothing will get done. you also come out with the strong feel that that is barack obama's trump card with this country, that i can't say, you know, free bottled water, a glass of milk and peanut butter sandwich for every american every day and republicans would say no. >> let me stop you there. we're going to hear a lot of that today in certain quarters, but if i'm sitting in that congress and i've been talking about congress needing to work,
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and he doesn't mention the debt, first of all. >> right. >> which i believe is the key long-term issue in this country, first of all. second le he talks about a program where we're going to use more federal money that we don't have to keep people in houses they can't afford that's a second proposal? and the third is you're talking about raising taxes in a time right now, in a time of an economic downturn? i'm sorry -- >> raising taxes on the few. >> yeah, the few -- >> on an election where you -- >> yeah, but -- >> long term people don't vote long term. >> that's fine. you believe in raising taxes on the few, as you say, people that already pay 36% of the income tax in this country, despite the fact they make 16% of the money. if i'm sitting there, mike, what am i supposed to agree on as a conservative? again, i'm not knocking the
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president. i'm not knocking the speech, but i'm not being an obstructionist for not going let's do three things that i think would be really bad for america. >> in terms of getting the republicans to agree with limb on, he didn't give you much specifics about -- >> let's go through, first of all, do you think we should spend more federal money that we don't have to keep people in houses that even barney frank says they can't afford? >> no, no. >> do you think those people should be thrown out on the street in let's turn the question around. that's the question, okay? >> here's the deal. if they can't pay a mortgage -- >> uh-huh. >> -- if the federal government is supposed to bail them out for not being able to pay a mortgage and let's say, as mike as head before, a lot of these people haven't paid a bill in, what, two years? a year? two years. >> a year and a half, two years. >> well, yes, i do. it's tragic, but i don't think
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the federal government's job is to step in and keep people in houses that they can't afford. >> well, i would say good luck with that, because these people are not the only part of the problem. >> you keep them in houses they can't afford for how long? >> okay. >> they've overextended. here you are, the personal responsibility person saying you have to eat like, don't waste. >> but. >> i think the government has to step in. >> but then when people make a huge mistake and they overreach in the days -- in the gilded housing age of george w. bush's era, you're saying, well, you made a terrible mistake there, and we're going to make the people that are paying all of their payments every month pay to keep you in a house you couldn't afford in the first place. is that what the federal government is supposed to do? >> well, because many of these people were taken advantage of. >> perhaps they were.
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>> by a sim that spun out of the control and greed overtook it, and this president is trying to -- >> whose greed, though? >> and the president is trying to come down on all sides of it. >> these were forces of human nature. >> that's true. >> people want the big house. >> that's why clinton started a program where -- >> many institutions that gave them the mortgages that were corrupt are gone. they're gone. they're out of business. >> but there are still people left holding the bag. >> so now you have the choice. as president of the united states, do you tell the department of justice to call sean donovan at housing and get all the big lenders, get them down here, put them in a room and take care of this thing, which they have not done. they work on things incrementally, and then assorted number of state attorneys general suing all the sorts of institutions. i'm on your side, but you tell
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me any situation that got resolved in the courts. it doesn't get resolved. >> he's running against congress. that's another tough place to come down from. as you said, there was a lot of small bull in there, but when you added it up into the fairness doctrine, you know -- >> coming up next senate majority whip dib durbin joins the conversation, and richard haus joins us from today vosdav plus another daring nighttime raids. they stormed a compound in somalia to free an american hostage. we'll have the latest straight ahead. but first bill karins. >> good morning we've seen one of the rainiest westest nights ever in texas. some areas have picked up 6 inches of rainy austin texas had some swiftwater rescues this morning. and of course we've talked about
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the big drought in texas for the last two years, this has taken a significant dent out of of it. still a tornado watch, but we haven't had any tornadoes. so that's good. the blue up in canada shows you where the cold air. a chunk is heading for the great lakes saturday and sunday that had sweep through the northeast sunday and more, but once again next week all cold air retreats to the north. so there's no sign of our midwinter-type weather returning to the u.s. we already talked about texas problems, florida is looking great. the west coast, wet weather in northern california. overall no snow in the forecast anytime seen. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. [ woman ] my boyfriend and i were going on vacation,
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and go to vesicare.com for a free trial offer. none of this can happen unless we also lower the temperature in this town. we need to end the notion that the two parties must be locked in a perpetual campaign of mutual disruption, that politics is about clinging to ridge i had ideology instead of building consensus around common-sense ideas. i'm a democrat, but i believe what republican abe ray ham lincoln believed, that government should do for people only what they cannot do better
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by themselves, and no more. all right. a live look at capitol hill, mike barnicle. he was fantastic last night. >> joining us is senator dib durbin. senator, joe scarborough is off right now, not feeling well -- >> i made him sick. >> so why not tell us how great president obama is. >> in my objective analysis? >> yeah, yeah. >> i thought it was an excellent speech. i think we all know, the first 24 hours, the democrats would say great job and the republicans would say too political, no good. >> then, of course, it's up to the american people. will the message sink in? i think it will. when i think the president talks about fairness, it's something that everybody agrees with. when he talks about creating new
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jobs, with ending unfair trade practices, who is going to argue with that? >> senator, donny deutsche, asking you another objective opinion. we haven't talked a lot about mitch daniels ease was i response last night which i felt was very weak in content and style, can you handicap that performance? >> i didn't see mitch daniels' response. i was called out to make some reaction to the president's state of the union. i respect hypothetical. i saw some excerpts this morning when we talked about class warfare. i honest reply believe that working people who are watching this show, struggling paycheck to paycheck aren't envious of the rich. they hope to be rich someday, but they want to be treated fairly. when mitt romney paying a lower percentage in tax rate than the average working family, they really question, is this tax code fair?
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>> all right. senator, i'm reading the words of mitch daniels, i'm going to play it for you, because i'd like you to responsible. take a listen. >> okay. >> on these evenings, presidents naturally seek to find of sunny side of our national condition, but when president obama claims that the state of our union is anything but grave, he must know in his heart this is not true. the president's grand experiment in trickle-down government has held back rather than sped economic recovery. he seems to sincerely believe we can build a middle class out of government jobs paid for with borrowed dollars. in fact, it works the other way. a government as big and bossy as this one is maintained on the backs of the middle class and those who hope to join it. >> all right. senator durbin, your response to that? bossy? >> the president's response nailed that one. we lost 4 million jobs in the six months before he was sworn in, 4 million jobs before
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president obama's stimulus package really kicked in and started to move forward. we've created 3 million new private sector jobs. the biggest job growth in the private sector in years. we need to do more. the president didn't boast about having the strongest economy in the history of america. he said we are getting stronger. that, i think, is the key element. when governor daniels says, what are we going to do about the deficit? the president pointed to $2 trillion in deficit reduction, and he invited the republicans to sit down at the table and along the lines of bowls simpes simpson try to find even more reduction. >> good morning, senator, thinks willie geist. the president said last night no one making over a million should pay a rate lower than 30% of income tax. republicans have shown in the past that is a nonstarter for
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them going back just last month to the payroll tax cut extension that had to be pulled out of the deal. what do you think would be different now, this year, than it's been in the past, where you could actually reach a deal to raise that top race and close some of the loopholes that exist for some of the wealthier americans. >> i'm a relyist. i understand even though the majority of democrats, even tea party republicans agree with the president that those at the highest income levels over a million should pay a higher tax rate than they are today, the republicans in the senate and house disagree. so the thought we can accomplish that this year is not very good. i understand that part, but it still is a reasonable thing for the president to suggest, if we want to reduce the deficit and fund critical programs. >> so you don't think that would happen this year. >> unlikely, in an election year. it was impossible last year. now we're facing in just a few weeks the expiration of the
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payroll tax cut. everybody remembers what appeared just a few weeks ago. republican speaker boehner had to back off and agree with the senate reps to extend it to the end of february. now we have just a few weeks to reach an agreement. one part of that agreement should be attacks on those at the highest levels of income so we can help working families have a reduction in their payroll tax. >> i don't disagree with that. having said that, with el do have a new video to show you released by the republican national committee comparing yesterday's speech by president obama to his former state of the union addresses, saying it's tired old rhetoric. take a look. >> fixing or broken immigration system. i strongly believe we should tail on once and for all the issue of illegal immigration. i believe as strongly as ever we should take on illegal immigration. let's stop expelling talented responsible young people. let's at least agree to responsible expelling responsible young people bhokd be staffing our research labs or
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who want to staff our labs, start new businesses. we'll put more americans to work. >> so much of america needs to be rebuilt. we have crumbling roads and bridges. we have face a deficit of trust. >> we can't wage a perpetual campaign. we need to end the notion that the two parties must be locked in a perpetual campaign. we should give them a government more competent and more efficient. >> we should all want a smarter more effective government. all right. senator, i want to let you responsible. there probably are some people out there who that video would really speak to. people without jobs, people who can't seem to get a leg up and they're waiting now, several years into this presidency, which was based on a campaign of hope and change. >> let's just look, mika, at the reality. the president's positions have been consistent and he abbeen running into this big wall of
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obstruction from the republican side. not one single republican vote which it came to trying to reduce the growth in the cost of health cared in america. not one single republican vote when it came to dealing with the outrageous conduct of wall street and the need for reform. we are looking for the republicans to join us for a comprehensive immigration reform package. this used to be a bipartisan issue. president george w. bush was one of the best on this issue, but unfortunately it's become a polarizing issue with the republicans really refusing to participate. >> mike? >> senator, you mentioned the simpson bowles proposals. what would happen if those proposals were submitted to the united states senate for a vote today. would it pass? imgts i think there's a good chance it would. i'll be honest. i voted for it as a member of the commission now we have about 45 who have said they would step
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forward and push this proposal. i think we're going to try to have a conversation about bringing it to the floor. the house is another question. i don't even know if the leadership would consider it. >> as soon as the bowles simpson obama proposal, you know exact lid what's going to happen. the republican national committee and leadership will say absolutely unacceptable. >> i wouldn't mind seeing that happen. i wouldn't mind seeing that happen. >> i think senator durbin will introduce it to help to please you, mika. >> have you noticed this is the only president that has not aged dramatically while they're in office. you know you usually see the shots -- >> what are you talking about? >> he's got some grays. >> no, he's hanging in there. senator. >> why wouldn't we want to see that happen, if that's true? >> i can tell you we're working on it right now. over the last several weeks we've been quietly assembling the proposals into legislation on a bifarther san basis in the senate. we'll be meeting this week and
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next week to talk about the details. a lot of us would like to see it move forward. if the situation in europe deteriorat deteriorates, we may be forced to move forward. >> senator durbin, thanks very much. >> a lot of tough questions. we appreciate you -- >> i hope joe is feeling better. >> he went home. >> are you serious? >> yeah, he's not aging. up next we're going to bring in the president on the council of foreign relations. look at him, live from davos at the world economic forum. he looks -- really my goodness gracious, what a beautiful scene. keep it right here on "morning joe." [ todd ] hello? hello todd. just calling to let you know i'm giving you the silent treatment. so you're calling to tell me you're giving me the silent treatment? ummm, yeah. jen, this is like the eighth time you've called... no, it's fine, my family has free unlimited mobile-to-any-mobile minutes. i can call all i want. i don't think you understand how the silent treatment works.
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beautiful picture. we find the president on the council of foreign relations. good morning. donnie has a question, what the hell do you guys do every year at davos? >> it's the world economic forum. there's a lot of coffee during the day and a lot of wine at night. >> okay, at least an honest
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answer. it looks to me leek a bunch of people with north face jackets. >> drinking cognac. >> what is the headline beyond of wine and the apres ski? what are we talking about? >> the principal subject is europe. chancellor merkel, the chancellor of germany is coming in a few hours. a lot of anticipation there, but that's the central story. not that everybody here is european, but even if you're not, what happens here is not going to stay here. the consequences of europe's economic travails will obviously be felt far and wide. >> hey, richard, if there are any representatives of the greek government there, or the greek finance industry there, my question to you is, who's paying their bill and why are they there? they have proven to be a fact of incompetent butt-outs who are threatening the rest of the
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world. >> george soros was talking about it at lunch, and i think there's a growing view by the conference next year, 12 months from now, greece will not not be a member of the yoeurozone. >> i would love to know what it costs for a ceo to fly over, sit there for a couple days, the tens of mills onspent shipping them over there, and the shoulders, is that the way we want them to spend their money. >> with all due respect, the issues are serious. however people fly here, the stakes are enormous, and wife reached a point -- look at the imf report the other day, the projections of global economic growth are down to 3.25. europe is expected to decline. the united states barely goes up. so we're facing a year ahead
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even without a collapse, say of greece, even without a crisis over iraq. the best-case scenario looks pretty bad. if there are some serious shocks, it looks really bad. taken together half the world economically is the united states and europe, and we're looking at essentially little or no growth in half the world. that alone is more than enough to justify why people are here. >> richard, you said angela merkel. a lot of eyes on her over there. what kind of pressure is being brought to bear on her. you said in this imf global forecast, a comprehensive package may be needed again, in other words, more rescue for some of the european union countries. will she be brought around to the position that germany has to be part again of bailing out some of these countries? you see. >> reporter: i think she's caught in almost an impossible place. the economic arguments are for her to do a lot, be big, be
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bold, but the domestic arguments are for her to be careful. it's in germany's interest to come up with a lot of money and write some very about checks, but try sells that to the average working german, that they should be working hard to subsidize greece where people retire earlier and work shorter week. it's an impossible political sell. that explains her predicament. she's walking the tightrope. i think what it means is you won't see the european problems solved. it will be at best muddle through, which means continued slow or in this case no growth, probably a decline, which is a real limit on the rest of the world. it's a real break on what's likely to go on, has real consequences also for the united states. it's one of the many reasons we're not going to grow at anything like historic levels. >> richard we've spend time this
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morning talking about the president's state of the union address last evening. what ripple effect, if any, exists there in davos, with all these assembled intellect and political leaders about the president's state of the union address? >> there actually hasn't been that much talk about it, but as you would expect there isn't a lot of sympathy for it. the whole idea of a class warfare element, the idea that government spending and xwhik intervention holds the key to the future of the economy rather than what you might think is the more prevailing business view, where the government's job is to -- rediced regulation, through dealing with the budget deficit, through reducing entitlements, essentially people want a more limited role for government, not the sort of activist role. >> willie, who richard has not said is what happens in davos stays in davos.
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>> absolutely. >> there's a lot of wacky stuff. >> donnie is just jealous. he's firing up the jet to meet you there. >> thanks, richard. we'll see you. up next navy s.e.a.l. teams rescue to hostages overnight. the latest from the pentagon when we come back. hey, aren't you supposed to be following that fidelity green line? well, yeah, but it keeps leading me back to my old office. i think it might be broken. or maybe it's trying to tell you something. yeah, but what could it be try-- oh, i left my 401(k) at my old job. and i left a jacket on the back of my door. but i think the line's talking about my 401(k).
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it had been in the works for a while, matt, the president authorized it yesterday, because the special operations forces said this was the time. jessica's health was beginning to decline. she's a young woman in her 30s. we wanted to act, and they did. the president followed the recommendations. i was leading the white house
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last night in the situation room was actually under way -- >> did the president realize he was tipping it off by congratulated panetta in the moments before the state of the union address? >> i don't think so. i didn't ask him about it, but the answer is outso. the by navy s.e.a.l.s that freed too hostages, one an american relief worker who has been held since october. this all unfolded just before the state of the union address. jim miklaszewski joins us live with details. good morning. >> good morning, willie. this is right out of hollywood. here you had two blacked-out special forces helicopter descending on an enemy encampment while the president is at the white house preparing for his state of the union speech. even as he left, the situation
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room was all abuzz as the mission began. there was intense fire fight, but before he walked in to deliver his speech, he got the word that the hostages had been resc rescued. indeed it was the president himself that dropped the first hint that something was going down. >> he tipped off the entire world for the rescues when he openly congratulated leon panetta. >> good job tonight. good job tonight. >> the president got late word that the two kidnapped victims 32 years old jessica buchanan and 60 years old dane paul fistad had been rescued. u.s. officials say two teams of navy s.e.a.l.s in helicopters landed near the compound, as the s.e.a.l.s approached the compound they came under intense fire. nine kidnappeders we are killed.
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no americans were wounded. the two hostages were flown away to an undisclosed location. they were works for the danish refugee council, providing relief for some 450,000 somali refugees when kidnapped last october. as soon as the president finished up his state of the union speech, he went into a private room there in the capitol and placed a phone call to jessica buchanan's father to inform him that his daughter had been rescued. now, neither one of the hostages was injured during that operation, but as we ahead vice president biden say, jessica buchanan apparently was in failing health. both the hostages are undergoing medical exams in the region today before they are flown home to their respective countries, jessica returning here to a warm and very welcomed end to this three-month ordeal. >> we're glad she's home.
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quickly this was a group of pirates, not ashabab? >> it's not al qaeda, it's not al shabab. not clear, you know, they may have been doing double duty as pirates in just outright thug criminals, but nobody here is calling them pirates as of yet. but they were heavily armed. they had explosives in that encampment, and by far this was a far more dangerous mission not only to the s.e.a.l.s, but particularly the hostages than the takedown of osama bin laden last may. >> great report, jim. we're glad they're back safe. coming back some of the memorable responses to president obama's addresses. michelle and bobby when we come back. ♪ ♪
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we've been talking this morning, showed you mitch daniels ease response. donnie was celebrated a few minutes ago, delivered the rebuttal. with due respect, he had nothing on michele bachmann's tea party response, mainly because he's so conventionally looked directly into the camera. >> good evening. my name is congresswoman michele bachmann from minnesota's 6th district. the tea party is a dynamic force
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for good in our national conversation and it's an honor for me to speak with you. >> that was last year, in 2009 bobby jindal giving the republican responsibility to the first address to a joint session of congress, who could forget? >> good evening and happy mardi gras. i'm bobby jindal. like the president's father, my own parents came to this country from a distant land. as a child, i remember going to the grocery store with my dad. he would tell me, bobby, americans can do anything. let me tell you a story. during katrina, i visited sheriff harry lee. i told him, sheriff, that's ridiculous. before i knew it, he was yelling on the phone, congressman jindal here, you can come and arrest him too? like my dad said years ago, americans can do anything. >> mike, you had some great inside about the governor.
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>> which i will save. >> up next, what if anything did we learn today? here's your business travel forecast. incredible rains overnight have been plaguing texas, where the worst of the weather is by far today. all rain, but thunderstorms too, possibly isolated tornadoes over to houston, and some of that heavy rain pushing into louisiana. so your forecast today, east coast looks no problems at all for your travel.
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before we tell you what we learned today, we want to go back live to davos switzerland. we're breaking every rule. we haven't told him we're looking at the live -- that's our dear friend andrew ross sorkin. he wrote "too big to fail." i'm afraid that hat is too big -- >> the sequel will be too stupid to wear, but -- >> i love andrew, but you just know the beating he took as a kid. >> he has no idea we're looking at him right now. it breaks every rule on television. >> i like that. >> sorry, andrew, but you asked for it. what did you learn today? >> joe and mika leaving us in the lurk, we can film "risky business 2." >> i learned if you want a spike in ratings film what we're talking about off camera when mommy and daddy are not here.

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