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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  May 10, 2012 6:00am-9:00am EDT

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rack coop tail could be president of the united states? that's a deep insight. thank you for emailing that one. it's wonderful. how about one more, tower? >> deborah in houston. i'm baking an old-fashioned pineapple filled butter cake for my father's birthday. >> that gives me the perfect opportunity on this may 10 to wish my own father a very happy birthday. he's not 97, but he's pushing it. happy birthday, dad. "morning joe" starts right now. >> what i believe in my faith is that a man and a woman, when they get married, are performing something before god. and it's not simply the two-persons who are men. i believe that marriage is between is a man and a woman. as a christian, it's to me a
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sacred union. i struggle with this. i have friends. i have people who work for me who are in powerful, strong, long-lasting gay or lesbian unions. and they are extraordinary people. i have to tell you that over the course of several years, as i talk to friends and family and neighbors, when i think about members of my own staff who are incredibly committed in monogamous same-sex relationships, raising kids together, when i think about those soldiers or airmen or marines, sailors, who are out there fighting on my behalf, and yet feel constrained, even now that don't ask, don't tell is gone because they're not able to
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commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point, i've just concluded that for me personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that i think same-sex couples should be able to get married. good morning. it is thursday, may 10. welcome to "morning joe." with us onset, we have msnbc and "time" magazine senior political analyst mark halperin. morning. >> morning. >> msnbc political analyst john heilemann. hello. >> hi. >> and in washington, we have pulitzer prize-winning writer for "the washington post" and msnbc contributor jonathan capehart. jonathan, great to see you. >> you too. >> you look fantastic. >> thank you. >> hi, willie. >> hi, mika. >> i noticed that you went right to "the new york post." >> no, i just thought it was hilarious given the news yesterday. "the new york post," their
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headline, the tan man, the tan lady up here. you've got travolta in some sort of a rubba d a dub dub controve. and then obama at the very bottom. >> the "boston globe." big news. obviously, a moment in history for many americans. landmark day. and we're going to get to that a little bit later. get to the headlines, other headlines of the day. but first, bottom line it for me. we'll go around the table. what happened yesterday with the president, john heilemann? >> the president made history. and took a significant political risk, but one that i think the white house is comfortable it's in his interest to do. >> i would agree with john, but i would add that what the president did yesterday was have his words match his considerable deeds. not confirming doma against a
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court challenge, saying he would sign a repeal. he had already done all the things that signalled his evolution was complete. yesterday he announced that indeed the evolution is complete. >> the evolution is complete. mark halperin, what happened yesterday in one line? >> he took a bit of a political risk, but this election was going to be about the economy before yesterday and it still is. >> was it a political risk? >> i think on balance, the reason they weren't doing it right away is because it was -- there's risk involved. if you look at the battle ground states, in at least half of them, it could hurt the president. but i think it infuses his campaign in a positive way. if you look at mitt romney and john boehner and how they talked about it yesterday, they seem to be trying to move on from the issue, rather than what would have happened five years ago. if a democratic presidential candidate took the issue, it would have been a national firestorm, unthinkable. that as much as anything else shows how far public opinion has moved on this. >> and you could hear, mika, a
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collective sigh, combined with a cheer from his supporters. this was the one hang-up they had with him. just say you support gay marriage. he did that for them yesterday. and the question of whether or not it's a tough political decision, a gallop poll most recently shows that 87% of independents support gay marriage. it may not be as risky as some are saying. >> every time it's been on the ballot, though, gay marriage has lost. one advantage the president has here, i think that the media is as divided on this issue as the obama family. which is to say not at all. and so he's never going to get negative coverage for this. the republicans will say this is a flip flop and it's a wrong public policy. but when you have almost the entire media establishment on your side on an issue in a presidential campaign, it's hard to lose politically. >> jonathan, go ahead. >> if the republicans try to hit the president as flip flopping
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on this issue, the opening montage actually shows his evolution due to his religious beliefs, going all the way to yesterday where it was focused on respect and dignity for all families. >> so here's the thing. "the new york times." you talk about the media not being so divided on this. they do have one major issue with this, and we'll address it right now. then get a look at the other political headlines of the day, as it pertains in and gets into this big picture and get back to the emotion of this. but the "new york times" says, we have one major point of disagreement with mr. obama. his support for the concept of states deciding the issue on their own. that position effectively restricts the right to marry to the 20 states that have not adopted the kind of constitutional prohibitions north carolina voters approved on tuesday. so there is some interesting careful political dimensions to this that some could say played into his decision.
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fair enough? anyone disagree with that? >> i would. >> go ahead. >> chris geithner, a very good reporter on the law as it pertains to gay issues, had a great piece yesterday up on the web where he talked about how this particular issue isn't as fraught as "the new york times" or even "the washington post" editorial this morning thinks it is. what the president did was say that he personally believes that same-sex couples should be married, that he believes that states as has been tradition have the right to set their own laws. but he also believes that because sexual orientation dogma should be struck down, and that matters based on sexual orientation should have heightened scrutiny, big time legal term, that because of that, there are federal limitations on what states can do in terms of setting marriage
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laws. so when the president said that -- and the department of justice said that dogma should be unconstitutional and heightened scrutiny should apply, that doesn't just apply to doma but federal, state, and local law. and you're seeing that especially in a case where you have a lesbian trying to get health care benefits from her deceased spouse. >> all right. we're going to get back to the political implications of this story in just a moment. and also the -- more from president obama's interview with robin roberts on the emotional side of this. you were at the white house yesterday as this was all going down. >> i was. >> we'll get some insight from you as well from that perspective. some other headlines, though. when it comes to political fundraisers, this one is going to be a blockbuster tonight. 150 wealthy democrats are paying $40,000 each. wasn't he at the white house correspondents dinner? to dine with president obama at george clooney's studio city
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home. but the hollywood vips are expected to count for just 1/3 of the funding haul tonight. there's also a donor contest online, which by some estimates could gross as much as $15 million. the event is being organized by dreamworks ceo jeffrey cattenberg, and is expected to draw guests such as barbra streisand and robert downey jr. it seems like hollywood is right there at least tonight. >> they weren't going anywhere to begin with. >> they love him. on the other side of the aisle, mitt romney has offered an update on his search for a running mate telling a denver radio station, quote, we're looking at a pretty significant group of people, and we've got a great group of republican leaders. and i want to take a very careful look and make sure we select someone who has the capacity to become president if that were necessary.
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romney also said he'd consider candidates from both genders but would not set a firm time line for his decision. are you hearing anything about this, mark halperin? >> i think it's clear he'll pick someone who is obviously qualified, someone he likes, someone he'd like to work with in the white house. and those are all good standards to use. >> does he need to appeal to women at this point, or has that mistake been made so royally that at this point it would be too much of a risk to take a chance? >> well, like mark, i think the best thing for him to do is pick someone who is obviously qualified. i think he has to appeal to women for sure. but i'm not sure that putting a woman on the ticket that doesn't meet that -- >> the capacity to become president. are they clearly trying to say we're not going to make the same mistake again? >> yes. and they are clearly trying to telegraph they are not going to make that mistake. robert cost at the national review, put mike huckabee back on the list.
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someone whose name we hadn't seen that much in contention. he reports that he is huckabee more of a look than thought of. >> retired women politicians. >> like who? >> condi rice? >> stand by. >> really? >> kay bailey. >> kay bailey hutchisson? >> stand by. >> what are you, in the military? >> i just gave you something. you want the whole thing? >> yeah, stay tuned for the 7:00 hour. >> what? did you hear that, willy? >> when people at look at women, they tend to say, who are in the senate now, who are women governors? but there are women who are retired from public office. >> decode some game change talk for us. >> i have no idea. i have to get the board out here and see. >> why don't you twist his arm and try to get it out of him.
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meanwhile, the romney campaign, definitely the issue of women has come up. and the super pac supporting mitt romney is preparing for mother's day by reminding voters in nine battle ground states about some comments by democrats about mitt romney's wife, ann. take a look. >> ann romney raised five boys. she successfully battled breast cancer. and multiple sclerosis. but what does hilary rosen say about ann romney? >> his wife has never worked a day in his life. >> and bill maher who gave $1 billion to obama attacks. >> ann romney has never gotten her [ bleep ] out of the house. >> happy mother's day from barack obama's team. >> whoa. the latest -- that's just wrong. >> it's a low blow. >> but that's why everyone has to be careful about what they say and not say stupid things. the latest "usa today" gallup
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poll -- >> was she looking at you? >> 12 swing states, including myself, finds mitt romney leading president obama among married women by four points but trails the president 64% to 28% among unmarried women. and before we get to the massachusetts story, which i'm so glad we kept that in, does mitt romney still have a huge problem with women? >> he has humongous problem. i'm not sure that ad helps. i don't know. we all try to sit around and say if ads are good or bad. but he needs to find a way to appeal -- he has to win married women, cut his gap with unmarried women. it's not his only demographic problem, but probably his biggest right now. >> but he does have for example in florida, did very well among men. does his support among men
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perhaps trump it? >> it offsets it. but right now, his gap with women is bigger than his advantage with men. >> and more women vote than men. so, you know, when you have a big gender gap -- democrats traditionally do better with women. republicans traditionally do better with men. so the thing is to deal with the gaps on both sides. but romney has to close that gap. and unmarried women in particular is a huge stronghold for the president. a group of people that are very much turned off by the contraceptive talk during the republican primary. that will be very hard for romney to get back if the president is as aggressive and his team are as aggressive as they are going to be at continuing to make mitt romney own positions he took in the republican primary on issues that alienate those people. >> and i'll say it 100 times. national polls, great. but unmarried women in california, you know, it doesn't
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matter. they are not going to help elect the president. so really, where do they stand in wisconsin and ohio. and that is something they'll micro target. and we'll see a lot of tv ads. but those unmarried women will get a lot of ads on the health care plan. and governor romney will figure out a way to appeal to them on different issues than the president will. >> one more story before we get back to the big headline of the day. republican senator scott brown out with his first television ad of the massachusetts senate race, painting himself as an independent leader. take a look. >> independent majority has delivered a great victory. my whole life has been about beating the odds. there's absolutely nothing in this world that you can't get if you work hard at it. i've done what i said i was going to do. >> he's turned out to be unpredictability independent and beholden to no one. >> we have more work to do getting this economy working again. working together, we can restore
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it together. >> brown is also putting the spotlight on his challenger elizabeth warren's claims of native american ancestry, calling on her to release her law school applications. brown says, quote, serious questions have been raised about the legitimacy of elizabeth warren's claims to native american ancestry and whether it was appropriate for her to assume minority status as a college professor. warren has faced questions from the media after it was reported she listed herself as a minority in two law school directories after discovering her great great grandmother was a cherokee indian. ok. let's go straight to jonathan capehart on this. having said that, i think this is an incredible race. with two incredible candidates. but does this one issue, which scott brown is focusing in on, does that hurt elizabeth warren? >> well, it hurts elizabeth warren because she can't seem to get away from it. you know, in the early days, there was a piece saying this
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has more to do with how she handles controversy than it does the actual issue. scott brown is sitting in a seat that was held by a democrat for three decades. he's fighting for his political life in the sense that he is trying to hold that seat. by declaring himself, you know, a truly independent person. i don't even recall hearing the word "republican" in the ad. it might be too early and i missed it. but for him to declare himself an independent is getting away from, one, from the republican party but, two, from a republican party that is increasingly unpopular and increasingly extreme. so he's going to have to do that if he wants to hold on to that seat. >> all right. jonathan capehart, thanks very much. we're going to get back to our big headline of the day, every major newspaper has it. president obama saying that gays should have the right to wed. we'll talk about that in the politico playbook. also, the top stories in the playbook. in a few minutes, the national journal's major garrett will be
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here. why he is comparing this year's presidential race to the film "this is spinal tap." gillian tett will join us. chuck todd. and award-winning accuracy sissy spacek as well. but first, bill karins. >> an amazing seen in mobile, alabama, yesterday. a storm was coming onshore, four water spouts just off the coast. you can see a boat in the middle of it. the one on the right was the strongest. a water spout is just a tornado over the water. thankfully, none moved onshore. that storm system has moved up the east coast overnight. heavy rain from new york to philadelphia to d.c. is over with. the only rains remaining is pretty much from connecticut to massachusetts. northwards. and even there, this afternoon it will be much improved. so the forecast is looking much better today than it did yesterday in many areas. a decent amount of sunshine late in the day especially in new york and hartford. but rainy morning, of course. as far as the south goes, heavy rain over the next 48 hours in texas should cause a lot of
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problems, maybe even some flooding in san antonio, houston, and dallas. get ready for some wet weather. everyone else, though, what a fantastic thursday. get out and enjoy it if you can. beautiful spring day. and the sunshine is already out in washington, d.c. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. i went to a small high school. the teacher that comes to mind for me is my high school math teacher, dr. gilmore. i mean he could teach. he was there for us, even if we needed him in college. you could call him, you had his phone number. he was just focused on making sure we were gonna be successful. he would never give up on any of us.
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the approval comes after high level talks in china involving treasury secretary timothy geithner and secretary of state hillary clinton. the daily telegraph. vladimir putin will skip the g8 summit and ice breaker talks with president obama next week, raising new questions about the strength of ties between moscow and washington. "usa today," fired arkansas football coach bobby petrino put his motorcycle up for sale online. it's the motorcycle that he was riding on when he and his mistress crashed, which exposed the repair. it needs about $18,000 worth of repair. >> somebody will buy that. >> i'm just going to pretend we didn't buy that story. >> some fan will buy that. howard stern says he's serious about his new gig. if you haven't heard, he'll be a judge on "america's got talent." >> whoa.
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>> howard says he built his career on finding weirdos and making them stars, his words. he will replace piers morgan. he'll be good. with us now, the chief white house correspondent from politico, mr. michake allen, wia look at the playbook. we have more of the abc interview with president obama yesterday. robin roberts summoned to the white house for the approximate the to make his big announcement. >> i've always been adamant that gay and lesbian americans should be treated fairly and equally. i had hesitated on gay marriage in part because i thought civil unions would be sufficient, that that was something that would give people hospital visitation rights and other elements that we take for granted. and i was sensitive to the fact that for a lot of people, you
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know, the word "marriage" was something that evokes very powerful traditions, religious beliefs, and so forth. you know, malia and sasha, they have got friends whose parents are same-sex couples. and, you know there, have been times where michelle and i have been sitting around the dinner table and we've been talking about their friends and their parents, and malia and sasha, it wouldn't dawn on them that somehow their friends' parents would be treated differently. it doesn't make sense to them. and frankly, that's the kind of thing that prompts a change of perspective. >> and mitt romney reaffirmed after this news came out his opposition to gay marriage on the campaign trail yesterday. >> states are able to make decisions with regards to domestic partnership benefits, such as hospital visitation rights, benefits and so forth of various kinds could be determined state by state.
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but my view is that marriage itself is a relationship between a man and a woman. and that's my open preference. i know other people have differing views. this is a very tender and sensitive topic, as are many social issues. but i have the same view that i've had since -- well, since running for office. >> mike, there you have it. it's pretty clear cut now between the two candidates. how does this play? you have heard what hal perrin and heilman had to say. >> obama reporters had officials into the west wing to talk about their thinking. you couldn't quote them directly, but they said that one of the calculations was that most voters, like the people around the table of "morning joe" all week, assume that this is where president obama is. so that will mute some of the damage because voters who might switch or might be against him already figured he was here.
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fascinatingly, officials didn't disguise their irritation with vice president biden. i thought it was fascinating how candid they were about the fact that vice president biden had forced their hand on this. also cabinet secretaries coming out for it made it untenable for him to keep saying that he hadn't decided. the obama brand is to be forward looking, to be transparent, to be new politics. and this idea that he had a view, that he was not revealing for political reasons, fought against that. so the irritation came from the fact that it's not like obama officials had not thought about this issue. they wanted to resolve it on their own timetable. they felt that vice president biden had aggrandized his own role. they were thinking about maybe doing this right before the democratic convention. on the romney side, we saw how soft his response there was. the last thing he wants is for
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this to be an issue. he has his own changes. you saw him there say, well, this has been my view since i've been running for office, very different from a lifelong view, and this is as he is trying to move toward the middle. >> so we can pick apart the mitt romney comment at another point. but back to president obama and his evolution on this. john heilemann, it does seem, and mike allen brought up joe biden, that perhaps he had aggrandized his views and the situation. i'm not even sure that's fair. wasn't joe biden asked about it? >> he was. >> and wasn't secretary duncan asked about it? what happens when you're asked a question and you're an honest broker on issues? i mean, you tell the truth about how you feel, correct? >> i think that's -- you know, look, there are a lot of ways that vice president biden could have answered the question. >> what are the other ways that would have not created a problem like everyone is reporting? >> well, i think he could have probably found a way to not come down quite as much in the -- he
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actually still i think believes that he did not in fact express support for gay marriage as a legal matter. i think he was just -- the words he used were i'm comfortable with them. and he didn't go quite so far as to endorsing a legal position. but i think, mike, that the core issue that mike is getting at is that -- one of the things he said was that the west wing felt that vice president biden sped up their timetable on this. and i was not one of the reporters talking to senior officials. i was down talking to david plouffe for other reasons. but i asked him specifically, since this was in the news, whether the president had decided to do this before the biden flap. and he was pretty insistent and said, yes, in fact, the president had decided weeks before this that he was planning to do this, make this -- come out with this announcement. he was going to do it probably in may or june, ahead of the convention. and the annoyance with biden was that it kind of forced them into a position where they had to do it on a different timetable and
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made the president look like he was dragged into it rather than doing it in the way they had planned to do it. i think the politics of it are -- they are i think as mike said a wash. i think they do not believe this is an issue that will move a ton of votes, that most people who would vote against the president on this issue would already vote against them. but they certainly think that among key elements of their coalition, among young voters, college educated voters, particularly unmarried women, this will create a lot of energy, and that's going to be a positive thing. >> kind of not buying the biden angle. jonathan capehart? >> yeah. >> do you want to jump in? i just wonder in terms of joe biden taking the blame for all of this, i kind of -- i guess you could move it back to david gregory, who asked the question. i'm not sure what else he could have done. didn't get completely a clear answer as to how he could have avoided the question. >> right. >> for the president. i'm not sure that's necessarily even -- you get a question like that, i would say just like
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duncan, you've got to answer it. >> david gregory deserves a lot of credit for asking the question. but i think vice president biden deserves credit for answering the question -- >> from his heart. >> which felt to me truly from his heart. if that's what it took to get the president to finally say what he knew he was going to say weeks ago or months ago, and what we all knew to be the case given all of the actions he had taken, so be it. i mean, let's forget the blame. personally, i'm celebrating the fact that we have a president who's willing to show some leadership, to show some true political courage, in order to do the right thing. >> and also, mark halperin, i heard you on "way too early." i think this is so key. the emotion that you and willie were talking about, whether you agree or disagree, putting yourself out there and getting behind it on a sort of personal moral level does not hurt someone who is a leader ultimately. >> no. and you look at governor romney's answer, it was veriant septic.
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>> and i've held it more longer than i have held other views. he's like, i have a record on this one. i have actually held this one for five years. >> having taken the position, the president will use this infuse his campaign with emotion. i don't think that romney will use it except for micro targeting some voters with email and such. >> these hurt romney because he's not clear on them, where another candidate who is republican could really have a strong position, could really have an opening to win. >> but it would be against the wave of public opinion and history. >> every day they spent talking about something other than the economy is a day they have lost. and that's also what romney -- he doesn't want to get near this because it's a distraction from the issue on which he can win. >> good point, mike allen. >> mike, talk to you soon. coming up next in sports, yankees take a one-run lead in the ninth last night. that's mariano time. oh, way. he's out for the season. so what happened with the new
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guy? we'll show you. plus, nba and nhl playoffs next in sports. [ thunk ] sweet! [ male announcer ] the solid thunk of the door on the jetta. thanks, mister! [ meow ] [ male announcer ] another example of volkswagen quality. that's the power of german engineering. right now lease the 2012 jetta for $159 a month.
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welcome back to "morning joe." time for sports. we'll start with the nhl
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playoffs. the caps trying to stay alive at home down 3-2 in their series against the new york rangers. barely a minute and a half into the first period. caps already on the power play. ovechkin a one-timer. the little wrister past lundqvist. caps 1-0 lead. his fifth goal of the playoffs. halfway into the second, still 1-0. john carlson throws it in front of the net. chimera for the rebound. a little putback. rangers did score a late goal to cut the margin to one, but the caps win 2-1 and stay alive. game seven saturday in new york. going to be huge. after the game, rangers coach john tortorella is a man you should know despises, has complete disdain for the media. here he was after the game. >> john, was the overall effort what you needed, level of effort? >> no. no. >> john, the time-out in the second period, and they scored almost immediately thereafter, what was that time-out about for you? >> what was the time-out about?
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i had a tired group out there. >> did you think stepan had a great game individually? >> i'm not going to comment on individual players to you guys. >> did you give thoughts to bumping him back up to -- >> stop coaching, pat. sucked. >> what did that do for momentum? >> it kills you. it sucked. >> that was the 90-second press conference. we showed you most of it right there. again, huge game seven at the garden. caps-rangers on saturday. baseball, al east. the division-leading tampa bay rays playing the yankees in new york. joe girardi still trying to figure out the closer situation. dave robinson has been a great pitcher for them. now a closer. a little more difficult. top of the ninth, game tied at 1-1. yanks had a 1-0 lead into the ninth. matt joyce takes this one into the right field seats, a three-run home run. joyce limping around the bases. he swings and rolls the ankle on
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the home run cut. and it still leaves the yard. robinson blows the save, and the rays, the first place rays win 4-1. nba playoffs. the knicks avoided a sweep a couple of days ago, but the heat stopped all that mess. it's over. last night, in miami, first quarter, carmelo anthony hits bibby for an open three there. the knicks had an early lead. but then the heat came alive. mario chalmers to dwyane wade for kind of an awkward alley-oop. wade had 19. and then lebron takes over. a one-handed slam down the lane. where's the d? that makes it an 18-point game. lebron, 29 rebounds, eight assists, the heat clinch the series. they know play the pacers. the knicks amare stoudemire fouled out in the fourth quarter. remember he's the guy who punched the glass at american airlines arena on a fire extinguisher a few games ago. here's the public address announcer.
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>> offensive foul on the knicks. amare stoudemire. it's his sixth. he has been extinguished from the game. >> public address announcer says he's been extinguished from the game. you get it? extinguished from the game? >> i got it. yeah. >> kind of a long clip to get to that one. >> bad audio. >> when are you going to tell us the information you're withholding? >> ask me about anybody. >> i have already crossed a few off. >> just ask me about anybody. >> president obama. >> i'm not going to comment on any individual politicians. >> you're the worst. >> what's wrong with him today? is he ok? >> up next, the must read opinion pages on "morning joe." [ female announcer ] the road is not exactly a place of intelligence.
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and it's only from aviva. >> this is what we use onstage, but it's very, very special because if you can see, the members all go to 11. look. right across the board. 11, 11, 11. >> and most amps go up to 10. >> exactly. >> does that mean it's louder? is it any louder? >> well, it's one louder, isn't it? it's not 10. you see, most blokes are going to be playing at 10. you're on 10 here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up. you're on 10 on your guitar. where can you go from there? where? >> i don't know. >> nowhere. exactly. what we do is if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do? >> put it up to 11. >> exactly. one louder. >> why don't you just make 10 louder and make 10 be the top
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number and make that a little louder? >> these go to 11. >> at 45 past the hour, welcome back to "morning joe." that was a clip from the rock mockumentary "this is final tap." here with us now, major garrettet, who compares the obama re-election campaign to that scene in his recent article. that's the stretch here as to why we just showed you that. and then we'll get to the biden theory which you and i agree on. but you write. this it's not that the obama wants to be the 11th re-elected president in the modern era that ties him to "spinal tap's" fictionaal lead guitarist. it's his re-election slogan, forward. some wonder if "forward" will last the summer. forward. who doesn't want to go forward? but forward where and in pursuit of what? forward toward immigration reform? obama never even drafted a bill.
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forward on gay marriage? not likely. maybe. >> well. written tuesday. >> forward on the bush tax cuts, all or part, hard to know. forward on his 2% payroll tax cut? forward sounds a bit like an amplifier that goes to 11. well, this was written tuesday. and we've defunked one already. >> yes. >> so that one clearly worked for the president's advantage. he would say he went forward on that. but what does forward mean? and does it also suggest that the obama campaign feels somewhat trapped in the branding and markets of the 2008 campaign? one word? does the president need one word? and is forward the best one for the president? i know they believe it contrasts well with romney. but it seems to me that forward in it of itself has been pillaried or made fun of or mocked by republicans so they are not afraid of it. and it strikes me as less than robust for -- >> what do you expect republicans to do? clap? >> well, no. >> ok. >> but do you want to hand your opponent something they are so
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easily and so nimbly able to deal with in a critical way? and i think forward doesn't also talk about the present. and the key issue for president obama is to make people happy or give them a sense of satisfaction to where they are now and that the direction forward is useful to them. and i think that's a huge challenge for them. >> i think the criticism just shows how little the republican candidate has to offer. i mean, i just have to say. because you're focusing on a word. >> were you not there in the beginning? >> where? from the beginning? >> critical of republicans. >> yeah. but i just don't understand -- i don't know. i mean, do you get it? i'm not trying to be mean. but i'm just saying this is kind of an interesting thing to criticize. >> three things the president can talk about. he can talk about the past and his own record. doesn't really want to do that very much. some, but not very much. he can talk about what we'd like to do in the future. doesn't want to do much of that either right now. or he can talk about mitt
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romney's record. and i think forward is largely about the third. it's about mitt romney being tied to the policies of george bush, the policies of paul ryan, which the president wants to argue would set things back. he doesn't want this to be a referendum on his record. he wants it to be a choice election. i think forward is actually a contrast word that's pretty good for him. >> that's what i think. look, even further back than that. it's the policies of the bush era they want to tie romney to. they also want to paint him as a figure from the 1950s, someone who's out of step with modern america. it's one of the ways to get back to the gay marriage thing, they would like to have a fight with mitt romney on gay marriage because they think as soon as he gets into that fight they can point to romney's position on all gay issues and say, this is a guy, a square guy from the 1950s who's not in tune with modern america. he resonates with the past and doesn't project the future. they think if they could be the guy projecting the future,
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that's the place to be. >> most successful re-elected presidents talk about what they've done. they do embrace their record. they talk about their record. leadership, accomplishment, what we have done, what we have made different together in our country. that's what most successful re-elected presidents do. forward doesn't speak to that at all. forward is completely amorphised. some might even say vacuous on what has happened on president obama's watch. and i think that is telling about a president seeking re-election. >> but part of it is, and you saw this to kickoff events on saturday, part of it is he's going to make a stronger defense of his record than the public currently accepts, and that the public feels. take his major accomplishments. health care, i don't think they'll win that fight before the election. stimulus, i don't think they are going to win that fight before the election. but auto industry, reregulation of wall street, changing some of the special interests in washington. i think they are willing to fight that out and say we can go forward more on those. i agree with you. it's easily mocked.
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but he's playing the hand he currently has. >> and i also -- what do you think about this point that i make that why does he need one word? a president can say whatever he wants about what he's done. it seems to me they are trapped in the branding mentality of 2008. >> to save on printing costs. >> well -- >> slogans tend to be short, right? whether it's one or two or three words. >> we're not going to agree on this, major. but we do agree on something else. stay with us because we're going to get to your piece on biden's role in the president's gay marriage evolution at the top of the hour. and whether joe was just being joe or if joe was what? >> dumb like a fox. >> strategic, tactical. >> willie's "news you can't use" is next. with the capital one cash rewards card you get a 50% annual bonus. and everyone likes 50% more cash -- well, except her.
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$4.00. $4.00. i'm just going to let the people have a choice. $1.00 for popcorn. come and get it. guess we'll make it two. you got it. progressive showed me my options, i'm showing you yours. $1.00, fresh popcorn. enjoy the show. you should have an option, just like with car insurance. that is a really great price. oh, yes. please tell us it's time. >> it is. it's time for a little "news you can't use." yesterday we brought you the heart-warming story of young keith judd, the texas prison inmate who got himself onto the ballot for tuesday's presidential primary, and he and his fluffy raccoon tail won 41% of the vote against the president of the united states, who got about 59%. we are getting new details about the life and times of keith judd. the bion a website, he says his
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favorite actor is gene hackman, his favorite book "the stand," favorite color, purple. favorite food, quote, i forgot. favorite vacation spot yellowstone national park, and favorite website is google. favorite president is richard nixon. quote, he got us out of vietnam and began world peace with china and the soviets. now you know more about keith judd. here's jon stewart last night on mr. judd. >> obama is so unpopular -- >> let's take a look at west virginia. the president lost roughly 40% of the vote in last night's democratic primary. he won overall, but lost the points to keith judd, a guy serving at a federal institute in texas. >> that is [ bleep ] up. wow! wow! i guess west virginia is one of them primaries where republicans can vote in the democratic primary just to mess with them,
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and then they -- wow! only democrats and independents? that is [ bleep ] up. please tell me that the guy who got 40% of the vote is wearing a coonskin cap, because -- or is being attacked by a ferret, because -- oh, boy. >> he's got that raccoon tail just there. >> that is just wrong. >> mr. judd from 1976 to 1982 was a member of the federation of superheroes, and in 2008 he ran in the idaho democratic primary. he won 1.7% of the vote. >> he came up with two grand to get on the ballot. >> yeah. $2,500 from prison. maybe sold some cigarettes or something. a little barter system in prison. >> maybe somebody should start a super pac. coming up next, the financial times gillian tett and our good friend chuck todd joining us. "morning joe" is coming right back.
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that's not cheese. grass fed. curry. gingersnaps. soup can tower. 5% cash back. right now, get 5% cash back at grocery stores. it pays to discover. i am the vice president of the united states of america. the president sets the policy. i am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying one another, are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights,
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all the civil liberties, and quite frankly i don't see much of a distinction beyond that. >> i have to tell you that over the course of several years, as i talk to friends and family and neighbors, when i think about members of my own staff who are incredibly committed in monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when i think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf, and yet feel constrained, even now that don't ask, don't tell is gone, because they're not able to commit themselves in a marriage. at a certain point i have just concluded that for me personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that i
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think same-sex couples should be able to get married. >> top of the hour. welcome back to "morning joe." john heilemann and major garrett are still with us, along with jonathan capehart in washington. and on the set, the u.s. managing editor for y"the financial times" gillian tett. >> good to be here. >> now the debate on the show this morning, what was biden's role? major garrett, you write this in "the national journal." biden with the assist. veep again dumb like a fox. biden did it again. biden cleared the path for president obama to declare to robin roberts he now supports gay marriage. it may sound cynical, but the math is real. the focus on gay marriage allowed obama to speak to a key voting bloc, one that also punches well above its weight in terms of campaign dollars. obama's recipe for re-election is melding motivated constituencies. this isn't twaet and waves of enthusiasm.
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this is micro targeting and corralling. and among those sympathetic to its agenda, obama has earned their energy, votes and dollars. biden happily plays the fool while consistently outmaneuvering those who thinks the bigger story can be found in his malaprops and exasperating candor. you think it was planned. >> whether or not it was orchestrated in sort of an elaborate six months ago, let's put these four days in the calendar, i think that's a stretch. >> yeah. >> but what joe biden said, and he is a veteran of washington, a veteran of "meet the press," a veteran of talk shows, his answer was precise and very well -- it wasn't of these candid moments where biden just sort of -- >> it wasn't verbal vomit. >> no, not at all. and arne duncan says the next day the same thing. and the president says what he says. there is a nice continuing fit pattern there. it dominated the political
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culture for the better part of three days. i think it will dominate much of what happens today and is discussed today. that's four days of not talking about the economy. in chicago, every day that the economy is not centrally focused on the politics of the day is a good day, and it's a bad day in boston. i'm not saying that david plouffe and the president and biden circled this on the calendar six days ago. but there's nothing about the last four days that tells me this was anything but a structured and well managed evolution of the president's stance on an issue of great importance. >> and of course tonight we have a $15 million fundraiser at the house of george clooney in l.a. if you ever wanted to get that fundraising machine going with energizing people who actually want to get onboard issue it's a great moment right now. >> i also think what joe biden said on "meet the press" and what the president said on robin roberts was very from the heart, and that doesn't hurth either. not that they are sitting there planning it all out in some
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fashion that's less than moral. i think they are speaking from the heart. they have chosen this moment, though, john heilemann. fair enough? >> look, i don't disagree with anything that major just said. i said in the previous hour i was at the white house, and david plouffe said to me they had decided to do this for the president to come out and support gay marriage before the election. so they have been thinking about this for a while. if you think about last year when governor comeau here in new york signed the gay marriage bill in new york, they have known that question might be asked of obama for a long time. >> sure. >> if you were the governor of new york, would you have signed the bill? so it's not as if there were no preparation. >> also if joe biden is such a loose cannon, which i don't think he is, but if he is such a run away beer truck, wouldn't you sit down with him and say, hey, listen, you might be asked about this, or are you that inexperienced, this white house? that's just not possible. come on. they are not stupid. >> but i do think that if you were perfectly managing this, you would not have wanted the vice president to get out ahead
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of the president, and you would not have seen the white house reacting with such thrufluster r it happened. gay donors will create a lot of energy. but the issue is not that popular with hispanic voters or black voters. those are also key elements of the president's coalition. and so there's a risk. as we pointed out earlier, 32 states have voted on this and voted it down. as we saw in north carolina yesterday, it doesn't just lose, it lost by 20 points in a key state for the president. it's a close political call. the president's people think on balance it helps him more than hurts him. but it's not a huge slam dunk victory. >> if it was a run away, it would have been dealt with a lot earlier and much more forcefully. >> i agree. >> let's look at the money. right now, the democrats are having real problems countering
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the super pac threat. they have to really energize and electrify their key supporters. and this issue at least does sta stir emotion and loyalty in real donors. >> jonathan capehart, alex just reminded me that the biden interview was taped on friday. >> on friday, yeah. >> so they are not sitting there on sunday morning going, what did he say? >> what happened? >> oh, my gosh. >> apparently, the transcript of the "meet the press" interview had been floating around the west wing since friday. and so when the words flowed out of the vice president's mouth sunday morning, in american living rooms, they were ready to go in terms of, you know, david axelrod with his tweets and the vice president's office calling chuck todd and other reporters saying, well, there's no daylight here, nothing to see here. but here is the thing. i agree with what major has written. but clearly, the vice president
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knew the president's thinking on this. clearly, secretary duncan knew the president's thinking on this. and if anything, these two guys were asked a question that maybe they were prepared for but didn't expect to happen. and they answered truthfully and honestly. and as i said in the last hour, you know, the vice president answered that question in a way that you knew was heartfelt, that was sincere, that was honest. and if that's what it took to get the president to make his evolution known, so be it. it was the right thing to do. >> and what's interesting is the contrast with mitt romney. and alex, after we show this next bite from the president, let's cue up the mitt romney bite for his position on this and how long he's held it. that was even painful to watch. the president explained to robin roberts why he didn't take a stand on marriage equality earlier. >> i have always been adamant t
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gay and lesbian couples in this country should be treated equally. i thought that civil unions would be sufficient, that that was something that would give people hospital visitation rights and other elements that we take for granted. and i was sensitive to the fact that for a lot of people, you know, the word "marriage" was something that evokes very powerful traditions, religious beliefs, and so forth. >> states are able to make decisions with regards to domestic partnership benefits, such as hospital visitation rights, benefits and so forth of various kinds can be determined state-by-state. but my view is marriage itself is a relationship between a man and a woman. and that's my own preference. i know other people have differing views. this is a very tender and sensitive topic, as are many social issues. but i have the same view that i've had since -- well, since
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running for office. >> here with us now, nbc news chief white house correspondent and political director and host of "the daily rundown" chuck todd. did we just see another way that mitt romney can't compare very well to president obama because his views too have evolved? >> well, i find it fascinating to watch the tone and language that mitt romney's used, the tone and language that you have seen from some republican leaders. you have heard it from some social conservatives. but look at the establishment wing of the party. you get the sense that mitt romney doesn't want to have a debate on this. and i thought the way he couched it -- this is not where the republican party was eight years ago. now, ironically, when it comes to his policy positions, he believes in a federal amendment banning gay marriage, and that in itself is a little bit to the right, for instance, of former president bush. but when you have speaker boehner yesterday saying, you know, this isn't going to be a major issue. let's go back to the economy. you almost felt like you heard
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that same -- there's not energy behind mitt romney's opposition to gay marriage on this. now, will social conservatives see that? i talked to some conservative leaders who said, you know what, this issue now, mitt romney now has a social conservative volunteers who weren't fired up about him 48 hours ago. >> gillian tett, if mitt romney wanted to talk about the economy in a big way and didn't want to talk about this, what would be the issue he should put on the table and say, what i want to talk about is dot, dot, dot? >> jobs, jobs, jobs. >> i thought you were going to say something that i couldn't understand. >> what's happening with the jobless situation. there are a lot of reasons why the obama team does not want to talk too much about the economy, because they have been telling people we're going to have this powerful recovery, once again we got the eurozone teetering on the edge. all kinds of bad signals there. once again, very mixed, very muddy figures coming out.
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we just do not have that feel-good factor. and of course, the romney team wants to exploit that. >> they do? i'm not seeing it in that answer to that question. >> well, it's an answer to the direct question on the topic of the day. >> but i think chuck is right. i think that the romney campaign -- it's interesting. there's a bit of a contradiction in romney's statements. he did say i believe in the bite states should be allow to decide this, and he is in favor of a federal constitutional amendment against it. so people should note that romney is actually inconsistent in the way he is handling this. but i do think they are not going to want -- they don't want this fight. this is not a fight. and halperin and all of us have been saying it, every day that the romney campaign does not talk about the economy is a lost day for them. and there was no way for them to have yesterday be an economy day because the president did this historic thing. but i think today, you're not going to hear the romney campaign talking about gay marriage today they are going to be back trying to drive the economic message.
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>> when barack obama ran for the state senate, he was in favor of gay marriage. he changed his position the next time he ran in 1998 to i'm for civil unions. so he evolved or went backward on the issue after one election campaign in illinois. what romney was saying is, romney likes to say he has not changed his position. he has never endorsed gay marriage, so he is consistent on that. one other thing about 1990s politics. think about some of the people that work for joe biden and president obama. a lot of them worked for bill clinton. they remember the very difficult politics of gay issues for bill clinton early in his presidency. don't ask, don't tell and defense of marriage act happened under the clinton administration. the most significant steps until yesterday of the obama presidency was to undercut or undo gay policy provided by the clinton administration. and it seems interesting to me that some of the central figures behind the scenes in the current
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white house were there, saw that policy, lived through that politics, and are now working through the reversal of that politics and policy. >> and what we're showing you right now is where the public stands. you can see there's a shift happening as well. they might just be right. >> the country is also changing. >> the country is changing. >> and changes very fast. >> don't ask, don't tell. the country was absolutely in an uproar over that during the clinton administration. we are in a completely different place now. >> other polls as well. mitt romney, an update on this, has offered an update on the search for a running mate telling a denver radio station, quote, we are looking at a pretty significant group of people, and we've got a great group of republican leaders. and i want to make sure we select someone who has the capacity to become president if that were necessary. interesting choice of words there. romney also said he would be considering candidates from both genders, but would not set a firm timeline for his decision. new polls out give us some
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insight into the benefits of potential romney v.p. choices. a poll out of ohio, president obama and mitt romney are in a statistical tie there. 45% for the president, 44% for mitt romney. when you add in rob portman as romney's running mate it barely moves the needle, 45% to 45% tie. does that surprise you, chuck todd? >> it doesn't. i think these running mates, let's remember it's more often than not a running mate is picked not for the state that they are from. i mean, i have always argued that bill clinton picked al gore. at the time it was an electoral pick because they thought they were in a three-way race and the democrats had an idea of a southern strategy, if you will. but going back, you have to go all the way back to the 1960s, right? i think we always put too much into that aspect. mitt romney is going to use his vp pick to send a message to either double down on the
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economy, on the budget, but it's got to be about himself. whatever message he is sending. i can't imagine him doing it any other way, unless somehow it's dramatically -- there's some big dramatic reason three months from now that he needs to do a quote, unquote, and heilemann will love this, this little bell ringer, a game change. but beyond that, i just think we're going to go through this -- all of these machinations. and, you know, it's not going to make much of an electoral difference. >> let me show you florida. another statistical tie. obama 46%, recommend me thaomne. if you add jeb bush, he gets a two-point jump over the president. still within the margin of error. marco rubio gives romney a three-point advantage. does this tell you anything, heilemann, besides the opportunity to say game change? >> i would never say those words.
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look, i think it tells us that the running mate -- chuck was saying, running mates are overrated in terms of their ability to deliver a constituency or a state. people vote for the top of the ticket. this decision matters in one way only. it's a window onto the judgment of the nominee. and so if the nominee picks someone who is ready to be president from day one, people say that's a presidential nominee who is taking this decision seriously. i like that. if they make the -- if they make a choice that looks political, and not serious, people say, i question the judgment of the nominee. and so the substance and the politics are in perfect sync here. and i think that the romney campaigns understands that and will pick someone who meets that test. >> for republicans paying attention, it's a very interesting contrast with john mccain. when mccain was asked about his vice presidential process, i think he said, i think we're going to google some people. and that suggested a lack of core seriousness at the beginning of the process, and
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what romney is trying to establish up front, it will be a serious deliberative process. >> and as you say, it's really about competence. and someone like portman really underlines the competence theme, you can trust us to manage things well. not just with his electoral running mate, but the economy too. >> has anyone here seen "veep" yet? apparently it's fantastic. i'm checking it out this weekend. >> those guys at hbo do good work. >> they're good. >> you think so, john? are you pro hbo? >> suckup. >> pathetic. chuck, jonathan, and john, thank you. stay with us. jiwe will ask deborah spar about the big issues for the next generation of women coming up. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks.
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ann romney raised five boys. she successfully battled breast
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cancer and multiple sclerosis. but what does white house insider hilary rosen say about ann romney? >> guess what? his wife has actually never worked a day in her life. >> and bill maher who gave $1 million supporting obama attacks. >> ann romney has never gotten her [ bleep ] out of the house. >> happy mother's day from barack obama's team. restore future is responsible for the content of this message. >> at 22 past the hour. president obama will speak at barnard college's commencement next week. and here with us, the president of the women's college, deborah spar. very good to have you this morning. >> thank you. >> it's so funny, joe was just like why is that comment touching off such a firestorm. i saw you cringe just watching it in the romney ad. those comments. for women -- >> it just sets you off. >> it's an issue that like -- oh, my blood pressure is going up. we'll move on to the president's speech. that's going to be at your university may 14. >> yeah, this monday. >> you found out in february.
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what are you expecting to hear from the president? what are you hoping to hear from the president? >> well, we're pretty sure he's going to be an amazing speaker for our students. they are all huge fans. he was the first president they voted for, even if they didn't vote for him. that was the first election they voted in. and we're guessing, although we don't know for sure, that he's going to be addressing women's issues. clearly women's issues somewhat surprisingly have become a big deal in this campaign. there's a lot of political action around women's reproductive rights. really for the first time in a little while. so we're guessing he will touch on those. we're guessing he may also touch on some of the broader issues affects young people about to graduate, jobs, the economy. >> barnard college, women's college, one of the best in the country. what do you think and what are you hearing from students and alumni and all of those who will be there about what they are hoping to hear from him? obviously, the president has been on the frontlines as it pertains to women and equal pay and other issues. what are they looking for? or does it always ultimately come down to the economy, because we're talking to
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graduates who are about to potentially enter the work force? >> i think our students have heard a lot about the economy for the past four years. i think they are expecting some words along those lines. but they think they are really hoping that the president will speak to women's issues, the issues that young women are facing in terms of the proverbial glass ceiling. i'm sure like all college students they are looking for inspiration, for someone to say those right words before they set out on whatever path they are going to go. and they are just figexcited to honest. >> and all the polls show there's much stronger support for president obama amongst women than there is for men. so in a lot of ways this is a politically savvy move. he is not going to the ivy league, harvard, ultra elitist places. >> he has both the women's vote and also the young person's vote. so it really should be a sweet spot for him. >> i'm curious about how women's education has evolved over the years. we'll get to that in just a
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moment. but any politics behind choosing to go to barnard, john heilemann? >> sure. look, we talked several times this morning about the president's coalition. women and particularly college-educated women, are one of the pillars of the new democratic coalition. and so the president has a huge lead with mitt romney in that cohort. and he wants to try to hold that lead or even widen it over the course of the next few months. makes a lot of sense for him to go to barnard. >> 10% to 15% difference in terms of support levels. and that's significant right now. >> a perfect framework for him to perhaps move some of his policies forward. skpic >> and also a way to talk to students without immediately being trapped into talks about jobs and student loans and such. >> you think he is avoiding the issue? >> well, why would you want to talk about it right now? >> i think the president will address that issue, i think, because there is -- the president's lead among single
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women is much bigger than it is right now over romney with young voters. and there has been some diminution of his support among mi lineal voters because a lot of those voters are still living at home with their parents right now. youth unemployment is very high. because that's one place that romney can speak to young voters and say you're disappointed, the president didn't deliver jobs for you. you're unemployed four years out of college, and i have a plan. >> barnard college has had some pretty high profile speakers the previous two years. last year, you had cheryl samberg, right? >> yes. >> and the year before that, hillary clinton. so if you want to look cool -- >> i got it. deborah, it's you, the cool girl in school. quickly, though, i'm interested about -- i went to an all girls high school. and almost went to an all girls college. what -- how has it changed over the years?
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and what do you make to the contention that some might feel it's outdated? >> i didn't go to an all women's high school or college or graduate school. i spent my entire career in very male institutions. my last job was at harvard business school for 20 years. >> that would be that, yeah. >> so that's different. so when i went to women's college just four years ago, i to some extent asked the same question. and i've just been bowled over by watching what the benefits these young women get for four years of their lives. so they know they are going to a co-ed environment because of our relationship of colombia university. there's men on campus. but for now years, these girls get to sit in a biochemistry class and never have that awkward feeling that when you put your hand up you're somehow expected to give the woman's point of view. they can just be themselves. and it gives them a confidence that i just find astonishing. it really works. >> as somebody who did go to an all girls high school, and i'm the mother of two daughters, i thoroughly echo that.
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i think there is definitely a place. you want to get more women into things like still, which we need so badly in america, i think it's very, very important. >> i don't disagree. i wonder what that says, ultimately, but i'm not sure it matters. i had a similar experience. deborah spar, it's so nice to meet you. >> pleasure, thank you. >> and good luck with the president's visit. still ahead, we'll talk to political sat satirist chris buckley. more ahead still on "morning joe." deaf this is delicious okay... is this where we're at now? we just eat whatever tastes good? like these sweet honey clusters... actually there's a half a day's worth of fiber in every ... why stop at cereal? bring on the pork chops and the hot fudge. fantastic. are you done sweetie? yea [ male announcer ] fiber one.
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no. well, all right. thanks. okay, here we go. whoa! no one said "cheese." progressive mobile -- insurance has never been easier. get a free quote today. ok. we will be showing you something later, alex just told me. the house will be voting on a bill later today. what? >> nothing. news, all news. >> that will cut the deficit by $300 billion over the next 10 years. the republicans hope to stop a round of cuts to the defense programs. it's likely to pass in the house, but the bill is not expected to advance beyond the
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democrat controlled senate. the republican bill contains cuts to medicare and food stamps but no new tax revenue. is anything getting done here, heilemann? >> no. >> not one thing? >> no. >> all those things will go away? >> look, all those things, the lame duck session will have to address all of these issues. this is -- we're in a state of inertia and gridlock. >> just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water, the sharks come out again. and once again, we are heading for a new fight about debt. we could be looking at government shutdowns, government debt ceilings and stuff. it's nasty. >> but in order to address debt, address deficit, do you have to make cuts, correct? >> you do. and you also have to raise revenue. >> and you have to agree on them. >> and start talking about entitlement programs. >> just checking. so there's nothing there. what i just read meant nothing in the long bill. >> the house passes a bill that will not pass the senate. >> a complete waste of time.
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a new study shows that young americans are struggling to find work more so than any other group. according to the poll, 32% of americans aged 18 to 29 are either unemployed or working part time while looking for fulltime work. among all americans, underemployment dropped 18.2% compared to a rate of 19.3% from april 2011. long-term unemployment is really, really, really -- this is the -- >> it's terrifying. and you're looking at a potentially blighted generation. and you only have to look across to the eurozone to see what kind of pain that can cause and the scarring that can cause. >> all right. we've got something else we're going to be talking about straight ahead. rick stengel is here to reveal the latest issue of "time" magazine, and it's a provocative one. we'll be right back. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550
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ok. welcome back to "morning joe." joining us now, "time" magazine managing editor here to reveal, and it's revealing, the latest issue of "time" magazine. please don't show it right now. don't do it. just keep the question marcum there. i'm sorry. we have to talk. >> that's you're managing the whole program. great. mika, the cover story is something about something we've known for the last few years, the debate over attachment parenting. >> i like the debate. >> the guru is a guy named bill sears. >> great, a guy. you profiled him. let me guess. you put bill sears on the cover of your magazine. >> no. >> it's a profile of him and -- >> no. >> because a man doesn't sell magazines. >> we put an image that
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represents attachment of mother and child. >> but the article is about bill sears. >> i told you that about a second ago. >> let's see the cover. >> are you mom enough? it's a provocative question. it's a picture. i think you're blurring it out. nbc standards and practices. a woman -- we did a photo shoot with women who are breast feeding their children. he is 3 1/2. really, why does that bother you? >> because it's a profile of bill sears. >> it's a story about -- >> and that's a young attractive woman breast feeding a 3-year-old. >> it's a story about for the last 20 years the idea of attachment parenting has taken hold in america and what the consequences are. how women are debating of it. the unfairness of it for certain women who have to work and cannot spend the time with their babies that he would like and advocates. and also a debate about whether the science of it is legitimate. because he talks about how women need to breast feed, how you need to co-sleep with your baby
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and carry your babies around. women, not many women, have the opportunity to do that in every way. >> we're bad parents, aren't we? >> yeah. four months, six months, and then i gave up. and i felt guilty, i can tell you. >> let's have the debate. >> 75% of american women start breast feeding. only 40% of american women are still breast feeding after six months. it's not -- it's difficult for all kinds of reasons. >> yeah. >> well, for a lot of professional women, it's almost like a competitive status thing. >> are you mom enough, gillian? how mom are you? >> well, i kept going for a while. but i looked at this and my first thought was it's a really cheap shot. it's a piece about bill sears. not about an attractive blonde woman breast feeding. but the interesting thing is, i trained as a sociologist before i became a journalist. but attitudes towards breast feeding and breast feeding in general vary enormously. and at least it is making us think about our approach towards
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parenting and towards breast feeding. >> that was a good defense of the cover. >> but i still wince when i look at that. i'm a prison of my own cultural assumptions as well. >> very free. >> well -- >> the president endorsed gay marriage yesterday. i don't know if you heard. >> and this makes the gay marriage row look positively tame. >> exactly. so you wince when you look at the picture. do you wince when you look at the picture? >> i don't wince when i look at the picture. i think it's provocative. i think that it's a little whimsical too. i think she represents an outlier of women who are breast feeding beyond one year. but the point is, you know, a cover is to get your attention. this gets your attention. and it's a legitimate debate. and i think it's a debate as we've seen here that women are having with each other, and lots and lots of women feel guilty about their mothering. >> and it's the country where you can buy breast pumps for working women that are sold in brief cases to kind of disguise them, and so you can kind of do
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your job and do your supermom breast feeding as well. i mean, there are so many cultural contradictions about this issue in america today. certainly it should be debated. maybe not with that. >> last segment we were talking about -- we bumped in with a commercial, i think it was a romney commercial, about the comments made about ann romney. and it was the three of us, deborah spar of barnard, gillian and i all set up straight. this is an issue that cuts to the core of who we are as women and what our role is in society and what we should be doing and what we want to be doing, and do the things meld and should that be ok. >> and i actual leal don't have a view about this. we are having a debate about this in the magazine. the romney quote is right at the top of the story because we want people to realize, hey, this is something going on in the american electorate now. >> i was questioned by air hostesses when i was breast
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feeding with a breast pump once during a business trip, and i thought this is nuts. why can't i -- i was doing it in the toilet because i was embarrassed about it. i thought why can't i just talk about it openly? and yet if we want women to both be good mothers and to work, they have to address this issue. >> and the issue in this magazine is an interesting debate because it is about how good a mother you are, ultimately, isn't it? >> well, it's about -- >> are you mom enough? >> well, the question really is what is -- you know, we -- the provocative question is how good a mother you are. but the real question is what parents styles work and produce the best results in children. one of the things we dispute here is there are a lot of people who take the sears message and think, gee, if i let my child cry too long it will do brain damage. we say that is silly and ridiculous, and that it's scary to women and not a legitimate concern. >> what are the basic tenets of really bonding perfectly with your children and being a good mother? according to dr. sears. >> according to dr. sears, well, my reading of it is basically -- >> go ahead, hit me.
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>> he basically wants you to spend every waking moment, and pretty much every sleeping moment, with your baby. >> so more guilt. >> every waking moment with your baby. go on. >> he wants to you breast feed at least through one year. >> yeah. >> he basically has, you know, started this whole movement of wearing your baby in a sling. >> oh, you're supposed to wear your baby. >> as an accessory. >> but we quote the baby gods throughout history. and the predecessor to dr. spock was a guy who wrote a book in 1928 who said kissing your children is dangerous and you should shake hands with your children every morning when you wake up. >> oh, like my dad. >> feeling guilty yet, mika? >> my dad was always like, congratulations, you're going to school today. yes. and then i'd be like this is weird. so i'm depressed. >> so we've evolved. >> so i'm a bad mom. are you a bad mom? >> it's all about guilt, guilt, guilt. >> i'm horrific actually. >> and how come none of the men
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feel guilt? >> who says men feel no guilt? >> here's what happened. i know you have a map or something you want to show us. but here is the deal, and we're not going to break. don't you love it when a guy at your office has to leave early to go to his kids' football game, and everyone is like, he's amazing. what a dad. isn't that great? and it's like, if we have to run out, it's like we have the whole thing. that still exists. are men not heroes just for being fathers, when they can be called fathers just like women can be called mothers? >> i think we have to move beyond blame. we have to celebrate parenthood in every form. >> but we should celebrate -- >> equally. >> ok. i'm -- >> we have a piece that compliments this about the fact that attachment parents really means attachment mothering. and fathers are basically excluded. there is no pressure on fathers to do pretty much anything. >> breast feed forever.
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sleep with your babies and wear them as well. and the new cover of "time" magazine is provocative. that's going to sell, rick. are you mom enough? rick stengel, thank you very much. thank you for putting up with me. gillian tett, thank you as well. up next, oscar winning actress sissy spacek joins us here on the set. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. way to predict the future... is to create it. [ female announcer ] now create a new future for your skin. only aveeno positively radiant has total soy, for a whole new level of radiance. it's clinically proven to visibly reduce blotchiness, brown spots, and other past damage, while broad spectrum spf 30 helps prevent future damage. healthier, more radiant skin. it's in your future now. [ female announcer ] positively radiant. and for sun care that helps keep skin healthy and beautiful, try aveeno continuous protection sunscreen.
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now, folks, we have a special treat for you. please welcome the new girl singer, miss loretta lynn. ♪ ♪ i may be the one walking by his side ♪ ♪ i love him still and i guess it shows ♪ ♪ the way that i feel as he goes ♪ >> that was actress sissy spacek
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as loretta lynn in 1980 as "the coal miner's daughter" sissy spacek is here. >> how ex seated are you, mika, to have her here? because willy, mika finally have somebody on the show that she's actually seen the movie of. >> we're still outoathed here. >> we had broadly cooper on. do you know who he is? >> i do know who he is. >> well, i hadn't seen his film. having said that, i loved "coal miner's daughter" and it's great to see you. you were nervous to be on the show? >> i was, because my husband
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jack and i love your show and we're so glad you got your table back. it was so disconcerting. >> that big ark that they put us behind. you have an amazing story. you're from texas, decided you were going to move to new york city, not go to college, and actually start a singing career. your parents had to be really happy about that. >> they were thrilled. i just want to point out that both of my daughters went to college. >> excellent. >> what moved you along to make that decision? >> you know, i went -- i went to new york the summer between my junior and senior year and i remember my dad said, get in the taxi and act like you've been there before. i said, okay, no problem. i got in the front seat with the cab driver. i had stars in my eyes. i saw this big city of new york and i just couldn't go back to school.
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>> so how did a quest for a singing career turn into an acting career in. >> well, i wasn't so successful in my singing career. i even modeled at 5'2", i modeled. i had a great book of photographs. i would go to the modeling agencies and they would go, oh. so acting didn't matter your size. those doors just opened. >> what was your first big break in acting? >> i did a forgetful film -- a forgettable film called "prime cut." that was my first one. the first significant one was bad lands where i met my husband jack and learned about film making, learned that film making can be art. and then i did "carrie" and that's when people realized i was living on the same planet with them. >> that's when we all -- the
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bucket of blood goes and -- yeah. she's got a future. >> people ask about "coal miner's daughter" is interesting because you didn't want to actually do the film until you met loretta lynn. >> have you ever met her? >> no, i have not. >> oh, my gosh. she is just powerful. a powerful individual. i don't know what it was but she had been on television telling everybody in the world that i was going to do the movie. i had never met her. i hadn't agreed to do the movie. i was young and had this idea that i was in control of my own destiny which i know now i'm not. and i was going to meet her to say, hey, i'm not going to be in your movie. and then she walked in the room and i -- they skrabcraped me ofe
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floor. >> it had to be really exciting to be able to pick up the guitar and start singing. you did the singing and got nominated for a grammy. so you got there one way or the other, right in. >> it was wonderful. because to get to go to nashville and sing on the grand ole opry and everybody there loves loretta so much that they just rolled out the red carpet. so it was -- i didn't have any of the struggle. >> one thing that is exciting for me, i was a musician, wrote songs -- >> i know that. >> -- starting at 13 and of course, like you, it didn't work out, so i -- >> don't give up, be joe. >> i had to go to congress. and i'm ashamed of that. i wish things would have worked out better. but one of the exciting things was seeing my eldest son pick up music and my 8-year-old daughter, kate yesterday writing a song at the piano while i'm
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trying to work. to see our children pick up what we love, what was most deer to us, and i guess music is most de eachlt dear, what is it like for you? >> she's much mortal lented than i ever was so there's a reason why i didn't make it. >> you have a pensacola connection. >> that's right. >> your daughter is friends with leslie appleyard. >> yes. >> another aspiring actress. >> actually, she's producing now. >> is she really? >> yes. >> how exciting. >> hello, schuyler, madison -- see, i really am a hick. >> you are. >> my extraordinary ordinary life. sissy spacek, thank you so much. it's great to meet you. >> thank you. >> more "morning joe". >> we're big fans at my house.
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the teacher that comes to mind for me is my high school math teacher, dr. gilmore. i mean he could teach. he was there for us, even if we needed him in college. you could call him, you had his phone number. he was just focused on making sure we were gonna be successful. he would never give up on any of us.
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what i believe in my faith, a man and a woman when they get married are performing something before god and it's not simply just the two persons -- i believe marriage is a union between a man and a woman. now, for me as a christian, it's also a sacred union. >> my feelings about this are
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constantly evolving. i have friends, i have people who work for me who are in powerful, strong, long-lasting gay or lesbian unions and they are extraordinary people. i have to tell you that over the course of several years as i talk to friends and family and neighbors, when i think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly monogamous, same-sex committed relationships, when i think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that don't ask, don't tell is gone
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because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point i've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that i think same-sex couples should be able to get married. >> good morning. it's 8:00 on the east coast, 5:00 on the west coast. wake up. as you take a live look at new york city. back with us onset is matt halperin and jonathan in washington. hi, willy. >> hi, mika. >> the new york post, i don't know if we can get the headlines, but we have the tan lady up here, travolta in some kind of a rub a dub controversy and down here at the bottom obama says i do to gay marriage.
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>> a landmark day for many americans. we'll get to that later. we'll get to the other headlines of the day. but, first, bottom line it for me. we'll go around the table. what happened yesterday with the president? >> the president made history and took a pretty significant political risk but one that i think the white house has in his political interest and is the right thing to do. >> i agree with john but i would add to that that what the president did yesterday was have his words match his deeds, his considerable deeds. not defending doma against court challenge, saying that he would sign a repeal of the doma bill being sponsored by dianne feinstein. he already did the things that
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showed that the evolution is complete. >> the evolution is complete. mark halperin, what happened yesterday? >> he took a political risk. >> was it a political risk? >> i think on balance the reason they were not doing it right away is because there is risk involved. this could hurt the president but infuses his campaign with emotion in a positive way. if you look at mitt romney and john bone another how they talked about it it yesterday, they tried to seem to be moving on from the issue rather than what would happen five years ago, it would have been a national firestorm, would have been unthinkable and imperiled their campaign. that shows how far this public opinion has moved on this. >> and you could hear the collective sigh combined with cheers. the question whether or not it's a tough political decision. the gallup poll shows 57% of
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independents, the people in the middle who will decide this election support gay marriage. >> every time it's been on the ballot, gay marriage has lost. the one advantage that the president has here is an advantage that he has on other issues as well. the media is as divided as the obama family, which is to say, not at all. he's never going to get negative coverage for this. the republicans will say it's a flip-flop and wrong public policy. but when you have almost the entire media establishment on your side, it's going to be hard to lose politically. >> go ahead, jonathan. real quick. >> if the republicans try to hit the president as flip-flopping on this issue, the opening montage of the show shows president going from same-sex marriage due to his religious beliefs and then yesterday it was focused on respect and
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dignity for all families. >> so here's the thing. the new york times -- because you talk about the media not being so divided on this. they have one issue and we'll address it right now then get a look at the other political headlines. the "new york times" says we have one point of disagreement with president obama. his support of the comment about states deciding the issue on their own, that position effectively restricts the right to marry to the 20 states that have not adopted the constitution prohibitions north carolina voters approved on tuesday. so there is some interesting, careful political dimensions to this that some could say played into his decision. fair enough? anyone disagree with that? >> well, i would. >> jonathan, go ahead. >> chris geithner of education can weekly, a very good reporter on the law as they pertain to
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gays, he talked on the web about how this issue is not as front as the new york times or washington post editorial this morning thinks it is. what the president did was say that he personally believes that same-sex couples should be married, that he believes that states as has been tradition have the right to set their own laws. but he also believes that because sexual orientation doma should be struck down because it's unconstitutional and matters based on sexual orientation should have heightened scrutiny, a big time legal term, that because of that there are federal limitations on what states can do in terms of setting marriage laws. so when the president said that -- and the department of justice said that doma should be unconstitutional that doesn't just apply to federal dome ma but to federal, state, and local
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laws. >> we're going to get back to the political implications in a moment and also the -- more from president obama's interview with robert roberts on the emotional side of this. you were at the white house yesterday when this was all going down. we'll get insight from you as well. other headlines though. when it comes to political fund-raisers this one is going to be a blockbuster tonight. 150 wealthy democrats are paying $40,000 each. hey, wasn't he at the white house correspondence dinner to dine with president obama at george clooney's studio city home. the hollywood's v.i.p.s are going to account for only one-third of the fundraising. win tickets to the star-studded event which could gross as much as $15 million.
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the event is being organized by dreamworks ceo and is expected to lure guests, including barbara streisand and robert downey, jr. might have lost some wall street support but it seems like hollywood is right there, at least tonight. >> they were not going anywhere to begin with. >> they love him. let's see what is happening on the other side of the aisle. mitt romney has offered an update on his search for a runningmate, saying we're looking at a significant group of people and we've got a great group of republican leaders. i want to take a look and make sure we select someone who has the capacity to become president if that were necessary. romney also said he would be considering candidates from both genders but would not set a firm timeline for his decision. are you hearing anything about this? >> i think it's clear that i'll pick somebody who is qualified and someone he'd like to work with in the white house and those are all good standards to
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use. >> does he need to appeal to women or is that the mistake that's been made so royally that at this point it would be too much of a risk to chance. >> like mark, i think the best thing to do is to pick somebody who qualifies. he has to appeal to women voters for sure. i'm not sure putting someone out -- >> look at that comment. capacity to become president. are they saying that we're not going to try to make the same mistake? >> yes. they are clearly telegraphing that they are not going to make that mistake. mike huck huckabee was put back on this list. >> meanwhile, the romney campaign, definitely the issue of women has come up. the super pac supporting mitt romney is preparing for mother's day by reminding voters in nine
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battleground states about comments about mitt romney's wife ann. >> ann romney raised five boys. she is successfully battled breast cancer and multiple sclerosis. but what does hilary rosen say about her? and bill maher -- >> she has never gotten her out of the house. >> happy mother's day from barack obama's team. >> whoa. the latest -- that's just wrong. the latest usa today -- >> that was a low blow. >> it was a low blow. that's why people have to be careful about what they say and not say stupid things. the latest gallup poll -- >> was she looking at you? >> i was. i was kind of looking at the group as a whole. mitt romney is leading president obama among married women by 47
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points but trails the president 68% to 24% among unmarried women. before we get to the massachusetts story, which i'm so glad that we kept that in, thank you, alex, does mitt romney still have a problem with women or was that a one day or one-month story? >> he's got a huge problem. i'm not sure that that ad helps. i don't know. we all sit around and say if they are good or bad. i don't know if it has any effectiveness or not but he needs to find a way to appeal to -- he's got to win married women and cut his gap with unmarried women and he's not there yet. it's not only a demographic problem but probably the biggest one right now. >> but he does have, for example n. florida he did very well among men. does his support among men perhaps trump it, perhaps the gap? >> the gap with women is bigger than is with men. >> and more women vote than men.
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so when you have a big gender gap, democrats do better with women and republicans generally do better with men. the size of the gap that romney faces with women now is not offset by the lead that he has among men and he's got to close that and unmarried women in particular is a huge stronghold for the president. very much turned off by all of the contraceptive talk, those are going to be very hard for romney to get back if the president is as aggressive at his team or as aggressive as they are going to be to continue to make mitt romney own issues that alienate those people. >> and i'll say it and i'll say it 100 times, national polls, great, but unmarried women in california, it doesn't matter. you're not going to help elect the president. really, where do married women stand in wisconsin, ohio, et cetera. and that is something that they are going to microtarget and
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we'll see a lot of tv ads but they will get a lot of support and mitt romney has to appeal to them on different issues than the president will. >> we have one more story before we get back to the big headline of the day. republican senator scott brown is out with an ad. it's a truly exciting race in massachusetts. picking himself as an independent leader. >> independent majority has delivered a great victory. >> my whole life has been about beating the odds. there's absolutely nothing in this world that you can't get if you work hard at it. >> i've done what i've said i was going to do. >> these turned out to be independent and beholden to no one. >> we have more work to do. getting this economy moving again, working together we can restore the american dream for all of us. i'm scott brown and i approve this message. >> brown is also putting the spotlight on his challenger, elizabeth warren's claims of native american ancestary,
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calling for her to release her minority status as a college professor. warren has faced questions from the media after it was reported that she listed herself as a minority in two law school directories after discovering her great, great grandmother was a cherokee indian. does this one issue which scott brown is focusing on, does that hurt elizabeth warren? >> it hurts elizabeth warren because she can't seem to get away with it. this has more to do with how they handles a controversy than the actual issue. scott brown is sitting in a seat that was held by democrats for three decades. he's fighting for his political
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life in a sense that he's trying to hold that seat. by declaring himself a truly independent person, i don't even recall hearing the word republican in that ad. it might be too early and i missed it. but for him to declare himself as an independent, from a republican party that is increasingly unpopular and extreme. he's going to have to do that if he wants to hold on to that seat. >> coming up, our next guest is one of the few people who can find humor in the rivalry between the u.s. and china. chris buckley joins us next. also, a new hbo documentary talks about the threat of obesity on the future. a former ceo of peps co-talks about the sugar rush in soda. plus, the west coast paper for you. but, first, bill karins has the
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forecast. >> eventually the good news will come to new england. still raining pretty good. but the time you get to your noon hour, most of that should be all gone. you're watching big thunderstorms coming out of mexico and moving into texas heading to san antonio. they are in for a very active afternoon. let's make that two or three days. by far the worst weather in the country as we head towards mother's day weekend. could see four to six inches of rain as we go through the next 48 hours. forecast today, it's a beautiful spring day from kansas city to atlanta. west coast trk was cool in the northwest. a little better today and tomorrow looks great. no wet weather at all. could hit 100 in vegas. and a peak at the mother's day forecast, rain now in texas will be heading over areas like louisiana and mississippi. that's really the only concern. maybe tennessee, too, for our washout mother's day.
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the rest of the country is looking very, very nice. st. louis, beautiful start to your day. everyone in america depends on the postal service. i get my cancer medications through the mail. now washington, they're looking at shutting down post offices coast to coast. closing plants is not the answer.
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they want to cut 100,000 jobs. it's gonna cost us more, and the service is gonna be less. we could lose clientele because of increased mailing times. the ripple effect is going to be devastating. congress created the problem. and if our legislators get on the ball, they can make the right decisions. [ thunk ] sweet! [ male announcer ] the solid thunk of the door on the jetta. thanks, mister! [ meow ] [ male announcer ] another example of volkswagen quality. that's the power of german engineering. right now lease the 2012 jetta for $159 a month.
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that's the power of german engineering. morning, boys. so, i'm working on a cistern intake valve, and the guy hands me a locknut wrench. no way! i'm like, what is this, a drainpipe slipknot?
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ridiculous, it doesn't even skim the surface of cigarettes. they don't even compare. >> this is from a senator who calls vermont home? >> i don't follow that. >> the number one killer is cholesterol and this senator is clogging the nation's arteries with vermont cheddar cheese. if we want to talk numbers, how about the millions of people dying of heart attacks. >> that is -- the great state of vermont will not apologize for its cheese. >> that is the showdown of "thank you for smoking" by christopher buckly. >> what a great movie. >> incredible, actually. >> so who eats puppies and why? lobbyists? >> it's a line of dialogue from this book which is about u.s.-china relations. i actually finished the book about a year ago so i was very
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happy that our commander in chief, president obama, introduced just a week or so ago the subject of canine cuisine. thank you, mr. president. it's not every day you get the white house behind your new book. >> absolutely. >> i'm very excited. >> so like most of your books, you take us behind the scenes in washington, who is really holding the levers of power, who is shaping opinion and what sketchy ways they are doing it. >> not really. i sort of make this stuff up. >> and then it turns out to have half a value of being true? >> well, it's tricky writing in america satire. they are cominging up with something better than the next day headlines. >> yeah. >> in the book it's -- you know, there's a lot of chinese poet bureau and create -- there's a poisoning of some plot to it. they are wire tapping each
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other. if you look at the headlines this the last couple of weeks, you will find -- you could google poisoning in china and wire tapping and it's all there. maybe i'm the new faith popcorn. >> very good. >> so you're looking also about the changing dynamic of the military industrial complex in satire? >> well, the book started out to be about the military complex. now, you're too young, mika to remember eisenhower's farewell address. i think you might be old enough. but in 1960 president eisenhower warned us about the industrial complex and here we are with a defense budget of $700 billion which is larger than the next 14 highest spending military country budgets combined. how did it get to that point?
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well, wars. wars help. but the -- you need lobbyists with budgets like that. >> i have a question i wanted to ask you as someone who has studied lobbying. what is the distinction, in your mind, between lobbying and bribery? >> none. >> either you support me directly or indirectly. >> lobbying is a form of legalized bribery, really, and then -- isn't it? >> one in the same? >> well, it would be refreshing if, say, one day a week we're reserved for using actual words instead of you've fa michl. so monday would be influence pedaling day and instead of calling it lobbying we called it influence pedaling day. >> i think we should have a
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national holiday against it. >> a noneuphamism. >> we could start the movement right here. >> you made a comment about how it's hard to do satire in america. maybe -- >> well, people like jon stewart and stephen colbert do it s subperbly. >> we're desensitized, perhaps? >> perhaps. >> you do satire in washington. it's a right target for satire. why are there not more saturist of washington? i can't think of someone that does it the way you do.
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apart from stewart and colbert. in book form why don't we get more novels about washington, d.c., that is absurdities? >> it's a good question but i'm glad it's not too crowded or else i'd probably get lost in it. i went down to washington 30 -- i'm blushed to say. you were not born. >> right. >> to work as a speech fighter in the reagan white house and i -- it is -- washington is kind of a disneyland. you walk around plucking one low hanging fruit after the other. and in are a lot --
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>> they eat puppies, don't they? >> before you go, let me talk about the elephant in the room or the lack thereof. you wrote in the daily beast, sorry, dad, i support barack obama. >> not my headline. but, yes, i endorsed, if you want to call it that, president obama if you actually read what i wrote, half of it had to do with my admiration for president -- for not yet president obama. and a good 55% of it had to do with my misgivings over the then palin ticket. i like president obama but i think we're not focusing on the important stuff. i think he's walking away from the bowles/simpson report was a
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terrible lost opportunity, perhaps even a tragedy. i mean, look, as to same-sex marriage, whatever, i'm libertarian. but these are not -- this is not the burning issue. this country's going broke. you know, it's matt particulars. it's not politics. and here we are talking about this stuff. and we're going broke. there are important issues and i don't think we're focusing on them. >> if i remember right, when you endorsed president obama back in the fall 2008, you were basically fired from the national review? >> yes. how did that happen? >> yes. >> and i'm even on the board. >> there was not a lot of tolerance for it. >> how did you vote on that question? >> there's not a lot of tolerance in the republican
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party. are you going to be welcomed back into the fold or -- >> i think i've probably been written out of the right-wing movement but i think i was never really a torchbearer. my last name happens to be buckley. that's the only thing interesting about me politically. i'm not, you know, a political guy. i have my views but -- so this was -- my blog post on the daily beast was interpreted as an endorsement. it seemed funny to me. why would anyone care what my views about politics are? i've tried to articulate what i had to say. but there it is. but we are -- you know, we're very -- we seem to be turning into france. people are going -- heading to the right, heading to the left. and at some point perhaps in the coming election we'll find the -- shall we say the sensible
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middle? who knows? that remains to be seen. >> we can only hope. the new book is "they eat puppies don't they"? >> coming up, a new look at hbo documentary, the weight of the nation. former ceo of pepsico is joining us right here on "morning joe." ♪ [ male announcer ] american innovation. 29 years ago, it helped us invent the minivan. ♪ today dodge grand caravan is the most awarded minivan ever. ♪
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who knows where innovation can take us next? ♪ directions to the moon. ♪ recently, students from 31 countries took part in a science test. the top academic performers surprised some people. so did the country that came in 17th place. let's raise the bar and elevate our academic standards. let's do what's best for our students-by investing in our teachers. let's solve this.
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what do you usually drink at home? >> orange juice, apple juice. >> okay. any soda? >> i used to. >> you used to? and then what happened? >> now she told me to stop drinking soda. >> good. that is one thing that you'll hear from a lot of us today, is no soda. >> it's not too difficult to tell a family that soda has no nutritional benefits. it's harder to convince families that juice can have almost exactly the same sugar content p as a glass of soda. >> here we go. that was a clip from hbo's
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documentary "weight of the nation." one of the experts featured in the film, former ceo of pepsico and former president of the quaker oats company. thank you for coming on the show. i think this is going to be an incredibly important series. >> i think it's going to heighten everyone's awareness of how complex this issue of obesity it is and how critical it is to our productivity and actually the longevity of ourselves and our children. >> let's talk about that clip that we just saw and the issue of soda. i often have called it poison on this show. i think it's ridiculous for parents to serve soda, grape soda, diet coke, coke to their kids because it gives them nothing. and then it shows how some of the juices have similar amounts of sugar and, quite frankly, if you want to be like me, they are almost toxic. where do you stand on this?
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having worked at pepsico. >> and gatorade as well. we have to consume less sugar and we have to consume less sugary drinks and find healthy alternatives. water, other drinks that have sugar now than less sugar going forward. >> can i be extreme and say why do we even need these drinks in our entire diet? there is no need. >> in the absence of past consumer behavior and if we started the world all over again, maybe you would not need soft drinks or sugary drinks. you have to realize we have an economic system that has created these products and products like them. people are used to consuming them. until we get people the demand to demand other products,
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understand what good looks like, and then change the product so we can satisfying them to what good looks like, it would be unrealistic to say that we're going to alter the economic system to that degree. >> the reality is, a lot of people watching, this you've spent 40 years of your life creating and marketing and developing these products. did you have a crisis of conscience where you said you needed to go the other way on this stuff? >> i was on the community of the institute of medicine because of my role at kaiser permanente and they wanted somebody in the business before to provide a perspective. it's like anything else, my kids drank soda but they didn't get fat because the consumption was controlled and because they got enough physical activity and the rest of their diet was balanced. there's nothing inherently wrong either with soft drinks. it's overconsumption of soft drinks and the only way to stop overconsumption is educate
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people, take them out of schools and i promise other beverage companies will stop. >> the industry is built on selling more all the time. there's an inherent contradiction between trying to solve the obesity epidemic which requires less and the economic logic of the industry is a failure if the sales go down. how do we reconcile those two things? is there any way that these two companies can be brought to the side of health? >> i think that they've -- i haven't been in the business for 12 years but if you look at what they are doing, they are trying hard to offer more alternatives to educate people correctly and to change serving sizes to so people consume less. i think they understand that for them to succeed they have to
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succeed. don't see them characterizing soft drink companies as a villain. you have to partner with them and change a lot of things systematically which is what this report tries to articulate to people. >> i don't want to say it, that anyone is a villain either, but can't we just cut through and talk about what might have happened and if they are not villains, look, when you throw started out at pepsi and then cut to now and you see a child walking down the street with a gallon, with a straw in it drinking it, and this happens and this is a sad reality, that we have, you know, millions of children eating and dinking terribly and that are terribly obese at this point to the point that their lives are irreversible potentially changed. >> absolutely. >> do you as a company, as a leader in the business world think, hmm, we made a mistake.
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we need to regroup and maybe we need to do more? >> that's why i'm on that institute of medicine committee and it's why i've participated in this. it wasn't -- you look at this. obesity is a problem that we have to solve as society. health care is a problem that we have to solve as a society and i wanted to be part of it. so, yes, it's really important for us to focus on sugary drinks are a big part of this problem and we have to consume less sugary drinks. i'd like to be part of the group that really finds the solution to that. but it's never going to be, to your point, easy to do because the whole economic system has been built around this. >> and it has to be changed. >> and it has to be changed. it starts with educating people, getting more physical activity, having the health care workers -- doctors don't even talk to patients about their weight problems. they are afraid to. insurance companies don't help you on your weight problems
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until you get type 2 diabetes. you have to do all of these things until the system changes. >> i agree more. and people don't talk to each other about it. someone has cancer, diabetes, a life-threatening discussion, how is your therapy going, your treatments going, how can i help you? and yet obesity is, if you say something twitter goes wild and people think that you're wrong. you can't talk to your children because you might mess them up and we've got a big problem and it starts with having a conversation about it literally between each other. >> and that's when the nation starts to stimulate is when you see the documentary. >> i can't wait. >> one of the things that you walk away from is a great deal of empathy for the people who are obese and the story about how they got there and they don't want to be there and how they'd like to change and how difficult it is to change. >> it premiers on hbo on monday and part two and three on tuesday and wednesday.
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thank you for doing this. >> thank you. up next, new weekly jobless numbers and a stunning report about how many americans are not saving for retirement. "business before the bell" is next. ♪ ♪ [ lauer ] this is our team. and unlike other countries, it's built by your donations, not government funding. and now, to support our athletes, you can donate a stitch in america's flag for the 2012 olympic games in london. help raise our flag, add your stitch at teamusa.org.
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ttd#: 1-800-345-2550 real-life retirement. ttd#: 1-800-345-2550 talk to chuck ttd#: 1-800-345-2550 and let's write a script based on your life story. ttd#: 1-800-345-2550 all right. we have new weekly job numbers coming in. let's go to cnbc's brian sullivan. what have you got? >> the weekly jobless claims showed that a lot of people are still not working. the numbers coming in at 367,000. those are new people filing for unemployment benefits. it's about in line with what wall street expected. too many people are unemployed. probably not going to move the market but who cares. we need to get these people back to work.
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on a different note, a new report shows that 49% of adults are saving zilch, zero. i have to chime in on your previous conversation. thank god you guys are talking about it. we look at the budget of this country and talk about why america is struggling financially. according to the institute, obesity costs us 1.2 trillion a year in direct medical spending, lost wages, chronic diseases. this is a massive problem. we're talking about the buffett rule when obesity costs multiples more than that. thank godness somebody else is talking about that. >> our last guest told me before
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he was leaving, it shows sympathy for the obese population that somehow this has happened to them to a certain extent and that's another debate. >> listen, everybody is different. but open up your photo albums. look at pictures of grandma and bra grandpa. nobody was overweight. >> it's in our food. brian sullivan, thank you so much. the west coast morning papers next on "morning joe." [ male announcer ] this is genco services -- mcallen, texas. in here, heavy rental equipment in the middle of nowhere, is always headed somewhere. to give it a sense of direction, at&t created a mobile asset solution to protect and track everything. so every piece of equipment knows where it is, how it's doing or where it goes next. ♪ this is the bell on the cat. [ male announcer ] it's a network of possibilities -- helping you do what you do... even better.
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♪ helping you do what you do... even better. high schools in six states enrolled in the national math and science initiative... ...which helped students and teachers get better results in ap courses. together, they raised ap test scores 138%. just imagine our potential... ...if the other states joined them. let's raise our scores. let's invest in our teachers and inspire our students. let's solve this. (spoken in mandarin) i've still got hours of battery life. it's an ultrabook. you bring great shame upon this coffee hut. with a long-lasting ultrabook,
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a look now at some of the stories making news. the seattle times, a washington state chiropractor and a woman he lives with are accused of collecting stamps while living in a $1.2 million home. their lawyer says they will plead guilty to stealing funds. >> the casino industry shows subtle signs of recovery with revenue up 3% year to year. according to the american gaming association, 27% of the american population visited a casino at some point last year. >> dozens of california state parks are slated to be shut down
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due to shortfalls in operating costs. governor jerry brown's budget is expected next week. howard stern will replace a judge on "america's got talent." he was on the "today" show. >> you can catch the season premier. >> come over here, you dog here. come on, baby. look at this guy. >> right here on nbc. >> coming up, a rare interview with adele. but, first, these messages. >> they are old buddies. howard and matt are old buddies. >> are we going to talk to
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halperin? >> yes, because i kept cutting him off because of the mother breast feeding her 4-year-old. okay. >> there's no mention in the piece about this mysterious -- >> you have 15 seconds. >> the latest issue of "time," rob portman, people say who is your second choice? the dropoff is huge. they have to figure out a way to unveil rob portman and make it exciting after five months of speculation. >> so who is the mystery? >> remember, we've been waiting for three hours. >> i'm not ready to say. >> you said in the 7:00 a.m. hour you would tell us. >> seriously? >> up next, what, if anything, did we learn today?
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time now to talk about what we learned. i know what i learned. what about you, willy? >> mark halperin guards what he learned. >> i figure out what i'm going to be reading next, which is
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chris haines book. >> i learned that comcast wi-fi is com-castic. >> green room? >> here. >> i knew i wasn't mom enough but i'm apparently know i'm not mom enough because i didn't wear my babies. who knew? breast feed them and wear them. no one told me that. >> what are you supposed to do? skin them? >> willard -- you know what? bye. thanks. thank you, guys. evolution complete, apparently. the president announces his support for same-sex marriage saying his change of heart came after years of

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