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tv   Martin Bashir  MSNBC  June 20, 2012 3:00pm-4:00pm EDT

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conclusion to this more than chairman issa. >> it's painful to sit here and watch it turn into a partisan political theater. >> how much did the president know about this? >> the hearing began with a friendly but very terse back and forth between the committee's republican chairman and its ranking member congressman elijah cummings. issa claimed attorney general holder was essentially blackm l blackmailing the committee, stop the investigation, he claimed the attorney general told him, and i'll let you see the documents. but congressman cummings was having none of it. >> didn't ask for an investigation, just ending this contempt fight. i double-checked with my staff because when you said that, i heard, i was in the meeting with him and i heard what he said. he was very clear. >> indeed, cummings was the first in today's hearings to question issa's true motivations. suggesting the chairman attended a last ditch meeting tuesday to avert today's vote but with no intention of ever doing that.
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>> instead, you rushed to a prearranged press conference to announce the failure of the meeting. it seems clear that you had no interest in resolving this issue. >> now, make no mistake, this was a seriously flawed operation with roots in the bush administration and resulted in the death of a border patrol agent. than agent's death demands proper scrutiny of the entire operation. but it appears that that has never ever been the mission of mr. issa and his allies. this republican congress has dumped its duty to legislate in order to focus on its core task, the defeat of the president and they're doing that fast and furiously. joining us now, democratic congressman charles rangel of new york. good afternoon, sir. >> good to be back with you. >> we have a transportation bill that if passed would create over a million jobs. we have student loan interest rates about to double in ten days. we have the american jobs act
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which economists say would create nearly 2 million jobs but virtually every republican in the house is beside himself or herself where excitement about this contempt charge against the attorney general. what on earth is going on in the house of representatives? >> i knew when senator mcconnell said that the soleolitical objective was not to pass legislation, not to improve the economy, but to get rid of president obama, what i did not know is just how far, just how far are they willing to go. and as we see what is happening here with the attorney general and the executive branch versus the legislative branch, here we have purely a part of an extension of how best can we not resolve a problem, but how we can embarrass the president. this is a classic case where
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we're prepared to take down the country in order to get the president politically. >> squlampb vitz of utah said during this morning's hearing that no one wants to put this investigation to rest more than chairman issa, but if that was the case, why had darrell issa planned a news conference immediately afterwards? he had no intention whatsoever of reaching a conclusion today, did he? >> they're walking in lock step. hardly there's any other issue whether it's democrat or republican. when you find no one leaving their party vote, you know there's something wrong with the direction of the legislation. no, the whole setup was how far can we go in order to hold the attorney general in contempt. or what can we do to make it appear as though the president is trying to hide something from the public. if they wanted this resolved, they could have independent scholars come and take a look at the records and reach a
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conclusion or not that these documents would be illegal and certainly improper tore turn them just over to the public. these are i've guards that are in our constitution. but the truth of the matter is that they made it clear no more legislation. no more arbitration. that the election is on. and will be on until november. and it's sad. it's sad. >> one of the things i just can't understand is given the fact that the president has said he's going to exert executive privilege, what is the point of this citation apart from attempting to humiliate the attorney general. >> these documents will never be produced if the president exerts his privilege. >> as long as they can get this in the headlines, as long as the tv reporters are talking, once again, they have attacked the president and his
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administration, and i think we've about reached that point that they've gone over the edge of being political. and they're involved in something that the american people they don't want to see these confrontations. first, they want to see us talking and working together to get some jobs, get this economy back where it should be. but the whole idea that the attorney general is targeted so that the president has to come and protect not him but to protect the constitution is purely political. >> i want to play something that congressman issa said at the beginning of today's hearing. and i'd like your response. listen to this. >> our purpose has never been to hold the attorney general in contempt. our purpose has always been to get the information the committee needs to complete its work that it is not only entitled to but obligated to do. >> do you believe what
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congressman issa says? >> it's unfortunate that. >> is congressmanis sass telling the truth when he says he's obligated to do this? >> listen, three and a half years ago, they filed into a political scenario that you are not to do anything to protect the country, the constitution, or the president. and so, he is really picking up his script and following suit and making certain that the president is not being treated fairly. it's got to stop. and i think the american people will make it stop. it's just truly un-american. >> now, speaker boehner's office says and i'm quoting, the white house decision to invoke executive privilege implies that the white house officials were either involved in the "fast and furious" operation or the cover-up that followed." hasn't speaker boehner perfectly revealed there the strategy, attack the attorney general in
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order to attack the president? >> and when you protect the executive branch, you're not saying you're covering up anything. every president, including recently pas past presidents, have always used that to protect the constitution and the executive from intrusion, and that's what balance of power is all about. to be able to use the tools that were given to you in the constitution and to charge that with being political avoidance of the penetration of a committee, a standing committee is just wrong. but again and again. >> the debate between congressman cummings anise sass resolved around issa's contention that mr. holder told them in tuesday's private meeting, basically, we'll show you the documents, but you have to stop this investigation. now, i ask you, sir, what would the nation's most senior law enforcement official attempt to the blackmail a committee chairman or is this more make
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believe from mr. issa? >> that is so sad. this is above the integrity of mr. holder and the office to give them piecemeal what they're asking for when the argument has always been the constitutionality of surrendering these documents. that is something no one should ever deviate from. we have scholars that can come in right now and take a look at these things with the approval of the executive and the legislative branch and avoid this confrontation. but no, no it, the confrontation is exactly what the republicans want. nothing else. >> there seems to be such a convoluted strategy here because republicans are saying that given the death of a border agent, it requires and demands that they see all these documents. even though they know that some of these documents refer to confidential informants and if that information were ever to fall into the wrong hands, those
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self-same informants might be endangered themselves. again, it just seems completely contradictory. >> well, there's absolutely nothing in terms of reason and common sense that would make their protection of this slain officer a priority. what they're doing. you don't have to talk about holding the attorney gualenl contempt to have an investigation to find out, was there any wrongdoing as it relates to this bungled scheme that started with president bush. we should want that investigation. but to say that the attorney general should just open up the files of confidential information to a bunch of politically motivated republicans, it just doesn't make sense. i hope that the american people just speak out, not democrats but democrats and republicans in
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saying, our country, our executive, our attorney general, they deserve better than this in the united states of america. >> congressman charles rangle, i fear that you deserve better on then happy day because it's your birthday. and i wanted to extend good wishes to you. >> you're wonderful for thinking about me. thank you so much. >> thank you, sir. now let's bring in msnbc political analyst and former dnc communications director karen finny. you've been listening to congressman wrangle. your reaction to what he said. >> well, i agree with him but i think i'll be more pointed. during my time in the clinton administration, i've been on the other side of this kind of game. >> have you indeed. you have indeed. >> i have the legal bills to prove it. let's be very clear. chairman issa knows exactly what he's doing. he knew exactly what would happen. this idea of meeting with holder, that was a game. holder i think went there, you know, with all good intentions. it issis sass and the republicans, they want to drag
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this out as the congressman was saying. they want to try to invoke a kind of chinese water torture of subpoenaing documents and getting this in the media because they think that that will then keep the white house and the department of justice busy dealing with this at a time when there is so much other work to do, but also create a distraction during the election. >> but karen, there's also this is ludicrous position they've taken, which is we are going to subpoena these documents. the president is going to assert executive privilege. those documents are never going to emerge. all that they get is the theatrical appearance of the attorney general being humiliated, being cited in contempt. i mean, is that what they think the house of representatives has been elected to do? >> well, yes, that's what the republicans think they were elected to do. the republicans obviously don't think they were elected to do any work. here's a coup of key points on this. number one, as i believe congresswoman maloney pointed
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out the documents they've currently subpoenaed have nothing to do with the original incident. it actually has to do with the back and forth actually as i understand it between the department of justice and congress. so this isn't about getting guns off the street. this isn't about getting closure for the family. and not to mention, why are they not bringing mukasey in? why are they making holder be the fall guy for mukasey under the previous administration under whom this many program started and holder is the one who ended this program. >> you know very well why they're not inviting mukasey in. stay with us, please. next, mitt romney says the president is out of touch because he doesn't note when to send jobs overseas. yes, that's right. stay with us. >> of course he's out of touch. he's out of touch in part because he never had the experience of working in the private sector and seeing what it takes to start a small business, how a business decides to grow, when they decide to
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the white house got a surprise boost today in the form of a new poll by bloomberg news. it finds the president with a whopping 13-point lead over presumptive nominee mitt romney. that's bigger than the lead he's running in most other surveys. that's why so many pundits are arguing it may be too good to be true. the poll points to core strengths in the president's core campaign that could make all the difference in a close race not least among them, likely voters have to say if they have to get stuck on a long flight stoorks they would rather be sitting next to the president
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than mitt romney. steve kornacki, steve, you've written a piece today saying the margin can't possibly be as high as this. it's encouraging for the president, isn't it. >> it is from this standpoint. i think the best thing to do is look at one of these places that aggregates all of the data and comes up with an average. he's about two points ahead of romney. if the poll happens to be the start of a trend, that average will tick up over the next week and there is something there. even even if you look at the two-point lead for obama in an average approval rating of about 48%, if you look that the historically, he's probably in better shape and he should be given that he's an incumbent president 3 1/2 years into a presidency that has been defined by just economic almost disaster. so the you know, in that sense, it is encouraging for the white house. >> karen, i noticed in this poll that a majority of voters say mitt romney is out of touch. i may have some clue as to why.
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take a listen to this, karen. >> of course he's out of touch. he's out of touch in part because he never had the experience of working in the private sector and seeing what it takes to start a small business, how a business decides to grow. when they decide to shrink, when he they decide to send jobs overseas. he doesn't understand that. >> now, hold on. the president is out of touch because he doesn't note when to send jobs overseas. really? you mean the way mitt romney sent core centers to india when he was governor? >> that's right. here's our president trying to fight to keep jobs here in america. whoo, he's out of it, right? >> he's completely out of touch. >> here's the thing i think is equally as important on this. we've said from the last round of polling that we saw there was room for still to learn about romney. this poll suggests people are starting to learn. what they're learn they go don't like. one of the key arguments that i think is reinforced in this poll and you'll continue to see it throughout the campaign is okay, we've heard this from romney
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before when he ran for governor. i was a businessman. i know how to create jobs. but what happened when he was governor? the state went to the 47th in job creation. he raised all sorts of taxes and fees on the people of the state, and you know, basically had increased their statistics by self-deportation from the state. so the when you look, the more people learn about the real record and the application of those business values to the actual job of being a chief executive, they don't like what they're seeing. >> to karen's point, steve ann romney was asked if she unlike the first lady, was planning on taking lavish overseas vacations? it's become something of a right wing talking point. the first lady like her husband out of touch for overseas travel and so on. but it's not as if the romneys don't like going overseas, is it? take a listen to this. >> the best memories were with my wife on vacations from time to time in france, the last
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vacation we had there walking around the city of paris and walking not just in the champs delee say but also over to the garden of lum ex-bourg. have you to give credit to the man for his french accent. who's really into the foreign holidays here? is it mr. romney or mademoiselle obama. >> what this kind of illustrates the same thing that's dragging down or has the potential to drag down romney can catch his wife up to when she does these interviews. when he goes to a right wing outlet and does an interview. >> does he go anywhere else? >> cbs last week is probably the last time. >> when he goes to fox news, one of the things that happens is he is confronted with the rights character ca tour of barack obama and forced to sit there and affirm it. he does not want to a lennate that base. there's a character ca tour of michelle obama that exists on the right. music huckabee has been
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reluctant to get into that. ann romney is sometimes in the same bind that her husband's in. she doesn't want to say anything that's going to alienate that audience. >> remember michelle romney -- michelle obama was talking earlier this week about a trip she and her husband took to kenya and how they had no money and it was great because they were roughing it out there together. that's a lot different than going to london to watch dressage. >> indeed or even the olympics. thanks to steve kornacki and karen finney. much more ahead. >> don't you know i just met a classmate of mine from high school. you know that? out there in the audience. >> how fun was that? >> it was great. >> okay. see it's going to make it. >> you heard about our cherry pies. [ male announcer ] this was how my day began. a little bird told me about a band... ♪ an old man shared some fish stories... ♪
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we are awaiting a committee vote on the fate of attorney general eric holder any moment. stay with us. the day's top lines are coming up. ♪ something tells me i'm into something good ♪ [ male announcer ] with six indulgently layered desserts, all at 150 calories or less, there's definitely a temptations for you. unless you're one of those people who doesn't like delicious stuff. temptations. it's the first jell-o that's just for adults. do you really think brushing is enough to keep it clean? while brushing misses germs in 75% of your mouth, listerine® cleans virtually your entire mouth. so take your oral health to a whole new level. listerine®... power to your mouth™. in here, great food demands a great presentation.
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detached than horse prancing. it's basically nascar in a very vet top hat. >> how a business decides to grow. >> we had to do a little sizing. >> when they decide to send jobs overseas. >> we south source the entire call center to india. >> i'll do this one though. >> why the pink? >> cherry pie like blueberry pie and rhubarb pie. >> the great pie fight. >> i've been dating this young lady. i wanted to find a place that i could possibly show her my affection. look up and there's her father's car. he's giving me this scowl. i can play cut after cut of him saying that he can't do this, but he did it last friday. >> you almost had me, fox news. almost had me but then got you the. >> the president of the united states gets up there and speaks
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in swahili. >> you're not here because i'm some spectacular speaker. >> our guest tonight supposedly marco rubio from florida. >> hey, guys. warm day. >> it's been an interesting day, yeah. >> there are only two people in this country who know who are being vetted and who are not. and that's bateth myers and myself. >> it's governor romney's process scenario marco rubio is being thoroughly vetted as part of our process. >> i'm doing you a huge favor by being here right now. >> professor james peterson, associate professor of english at lehigh university. dana milbank is i columnist for the "washington post" and crystal ball is a democratic strategist. while we await representative issa's contempt vote, dana, i want to get your considered opinion about what we're seeing on capitol hill. you've been at the hearing, have you not? >> i was for a long part of it, but not the entirety of it because of course, every member has to get in his or her
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five-minute speech even though we know exactly what the outcome is and that's all the republicans votes for this contempt vote and all the democrats vote against it. and nothing happens because the guy in charge of enforcing this vote answer holder is eric holder. >> so the point of this exercise is what, please, dana? aside from a witch hunt? >> it's going to shock you, martin, to know that there's an election coming up and this is a time when they have these fights. they're not fighting about the underlying issue in this fast and furious program within the department of justice. they're fighting about what happened after this program was canceled. so it gives you an idea of what it's all about. >> what do you this is all about, crystal? >> you can't even say it's election year politics because the republicans have been hounding this thing for over a year now. the entire right wing media propaganda empire has seized on this because president obama, his administration has been
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remarkably scandal free really. so they've been trying with solyndra, with "fast and furious" to get something going. the irony here is because of when the thing is actually coming to a head, it is distracting from what should really be their core mess and right now when economic numbers are slipping and people are feeling increasingly nervous about our prospect foz jobs. >> professor peterson, there are some people who are saying that this is an issue of race for many republicans. they see this as an opportunity to attack a black president through a black attorney general. how do you see it? >> well, it's hearty think to get away from some of those conversations but i think some of this is just policy oriented, as well. remember the attorney general has done a lot of things that are really, really important to folk on the left like addressing sentence disparities. they've been very aggressive in terms of prosecuting the stand your ground challenges in florida. obviously, this is a department of justice that those on the right do not like. this is wear that i of attacking
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and wrestling with that problem. >> indeed. dana, let's turn if we can for a moment to the race for cash. republicans criticize the president every day for fund-raising with people like sarah jessica parker and george clooney while karl rove and others plan to attends a posh fund-raiser in deer valley this weekend. take a look at this invitation to a july 8th lunch with mitt romney and special guest, the scintillating majority leader eric cantor at the creeks, a mansion in the hamptons. also attending new york jets owner woody johnson and the billionaire co-founder of the blackstone group steve schwartzman. do you think they'll all jump into a ja cue zif cash in the hamptons? >> you may have a lot of people pay twice as much if they don't have to go and listen to a speech from cantor. it's not terribly surprising that a democrat is going to always be accused of being close to hollywood and that's where most of hollywood's money is going to go. but this is how the game is
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played. you know, the romney super pacs just crowing about how it brought in $5 million including a lot from the wall street just this last month. and you know, this is how you have to do it. whether you're mitt romney or you're obama and you're going to have to raise money by the hundreds of millions of dollars. >> crystal to that point, isn't this what the 2012 election is going to be known as, the moment when the billionaire donors, the super pacs basically the whole process was soaked in cash? and frankly, it's mitt romney who is the beneficiary of most of it. >> yeah, that's right. i actually hope that that's how this election is viewed because maybe if people see it that way and are upset enough about it, then they will actually make a change, force a change because heaven knows, the change is not going to come from the top down on cash and elections. it has to come from people being so upset about that they force a change. one thing i will say about the hollywood elite supporting the
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president, you know, at least they're sort of up front about what they want to see happen. and they're actually supporting him against their own economic self-interests whereases are most of romneys supporters are looking at this as essentially a business investment, a way to put some cash down to lower their own taxes. >> romney's going to lower taxes and eviscerate the safety net and that will suit them. that's an important distinction. dr. peterson, you've been reporting is repeatedly and writing on the "huffington post" about your anxieties about the way this whole process is being bought by republicans particularly. does that continue to be the theme here? >> it does. one, crystal ace absolutely right. there's no equivalency between hollywood money and the money romney has access to. i want to know who are the guys who are going to pay $25,000 to be in a picture with him and eric cantor? that to me strikes me as being very, very strange thing to pay for. what's really, really serious here, martin, we've got to
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reclaim our political processes from the decision of citizens united. i know we say it all the time. that's just because we want to raise awareness amongst voting populace we've got to dismantle citizens united as soon as possible. the slippery slope we're on is a pathway to hell in terms of american politics. >> thank you so much. stay with us. much more ahead. >> we pull into the marina there and i put my arm around her and give her a kiss and i look up and there's her father's car looking right at me and he's giving me this scowl. so i want to re-create the crime right here. my sweetheart, ann romney ♪ teenage waitress [ female announcer ] research suggests the health of our cells plays a key role throughout our entire lives. ♪ one a day women's 50+ is a complete multi-vitamin
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nature can surprise you sometimes... next time, you drive. next time, signal your turn. ...that's why we got a subaru. love wherever the road takes you. the southern baptist convention has long been regarded as the republican party at prayer. the denomination was formed just
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before the civil war and earned a reputation for encouraging segregation. but an important step has been taken in broadening the organization's reach by the appointment of its first african-american leader. the reverend fred luter pastor of a baptist church in new orleans was elected president of the largest protestant dephenomenon nation on tuesday as southern baptists battle declining numbers and the needs for a more diverse membership. joining us is jesse jackson. good afternoon, sir. >> to you, sir. >> can you put for us this appointment in some kind of perspective? how significant is it that the reverend fred luter has been elected president of the southern baptist convention? >> well, he deserves congratulations, pastor luter does and so does the convention. it is a step in the right direction. after all, dr. king the white
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church resisted dedegregation. there is in effect a new south. it's a victory for the civil rights movement because the walls are down, lsu can now play alabama. you can have automotive industry in the south and a president of the southern baptist convention because this is an ongoing battle that we're winning every day, making america in some sense more open to issues of racial justice and equality. >> i remember dr. king writing that america was never more invited than at 11:00 a.m. on a sunday. is this a real change, do you think? >> well, we've changed leadership. culture has to change with the leadership. you see when you look at lsu play alabama in the big game, you look at the atlanta falcons play the carolina football team, there's more did he segregation there than there is in the church. but the fact some churches see
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the value of going on with a great moral ethical agenda there in our country that too many poor people are -- set the captive free. too many guns and drugs and jobs out. it's our job to lift up those stuck at the bottom and so i think it's a great moral challenge and a huge opportunity. >> indeed. what do you know of the reverend fred luter as an individual? does he have the, if you like, the heft, the characteristic, the charisma to be able to effect change in this very important denomination? >> he's a powerful preacher. it will take time because in the end it's not just about the complexion, it's about the direction and direction today there too much violence in our country. too few people too much, too many with little or nothing and the change toward a renewed
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sensitivity. if you will, the good samaritan to lift those who have been on jericho's roads. if that is his thrust -- right now there's a lot of top down politics with super pac money. the church's mission is to lift the mansion up, not the mansion down. i think he has a tremendous opportunity. he deserves support. he deserves a grace period to see what it is he wants to do. he deserves our prayers. >> indeed. now, is this going to be enough? because baptists at their convention are also trying to rebrand themselves. they've approved an optional name calling themself great commission baptists based at the end of matthew's gospel where jesus commissions the disciples to go into all the world. i guess that is an example of a denomination just not making a token appointment but also wanting to change its very brand and impression in the world? >> well, we want to make sure
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that the great mission statement to preach the gospel, good news to the poor. we hear enough -- we don't hear enough about the poor these days. there are 50 million americans in poverty, 54 million food insecure, good news to the poor, to heal the brokenhearted, to end some of the unnecessary wars. this is the acceptable year of the lord. the great mission is i hope the church becomes the great friend of the abandoned on life's jericho road. that becomes our mission. so much money up top and power up top, but then have all the homeless veterans, how we treat the least of these, how we treat those whose backs are against the wall. i was hungry and you fed me or you didn't. you clothed me or you did not. this sense of a moral urgency of those, after all, jesus was a jew. he was poor and he was abandoned and born under a death warranty. 'approached the gospel for what,
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from the point of view of the occupier eking the end. what a great moment for the church to sand up and fight for those who otherwise have backs against the wall. >> indeed. a varttable servant there. i can't allow to you leave without asking you a question about the big political news of the day. as you know, the house committee chaired by darrell issa is considering a contempt charge against the attorney general, eric holder. i mean, what is your thoughts about what the house is doing in relation to the attorney general? >> it seems to be politically inspired. eric holder is a just man. he's a smart man. and there is an attempt to marginalize him. the same force that would marginalize the president or seek to marlize. eric holder will take this task and pass with flying colors. >> reverend jesse jackson, sir, thank you so much for joining us today.
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>> thank you, sir. next we go to the white house. white house now at the center of the fury over "fast and furious." stay with us. my cut hurt! mine hurt more! mine stopped hurting faster... [ female announcer ] neosporin® plus pain relief starts relieving pain faster and kills more types of infectious bacteria. neosporin® plus pain relief. for a two dollar coupon, visit
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waiting a vote for congressman issa's committee whether to hold eric holder in contempt of congress. a vote that follows a first for this obama administration. nbc news's white house correspondent kristin welker joins us now from the white house. good afternoon, kristin. there was no press briefing. otherwise you would have been at it. can we expect the president or his team to speak about asserting executive privilege over this fast and furious case? >> good afternoon to you. senior administration officials say at this point that there are no plans for the president to address this. however, white house press
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secretary jay carney will undoubtedly field a number of questions about this next time he comes into the briefing room. we expect that to happen tomorrow. the white house coming under increasing pressure for answers about why they decided to assert this executive privilege. a number of republicans, including john boehner, senator chuck grassley, issuing statements saying that this suggests perhaps the white house did some sort of involvement in it. the very least the coverup, what they are calling the coverup of fast and furious operation. senior administration officials pushing back against those assertions saying it is not the case and say that these documents are essentially correspondences that occurred between white house and doj several years after the operation fast and furious was uncovered. they believe that they should have no bearing on the current investigation in the hearings that are ongoing. one of the director of communications, dan pfeiffer, didn't speak on camera but he did essentially release a statement saying that this is pure election year politics.
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by the way, republicans accusing democrats of the very same. at this point we have nothing on camera but we do expect white house press secretary jay carney to get a lot of questions about this tomorrow. >> indeed. changing topics for a moment. the first lady has been out on the road, too. she appeared to get a little choked up when she was speaking today at a high school gymnasium in colorado. take a listen. >> that is what i think about every night when i tuck my girls in. i think about the world i want to leave for them. and for all of our sxoons and daughters. i think about how i want do for them what my dad did for me. >> that's a woman speaking from the heart, isn't it? >> absolutely is. you know, it is interesting, martin, we have heard michelle obama, the first lady, the president, talking about their daughters quite bait on the campaign trail. we -- of course don't see a
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whole lot of malia or sasha. but this is something that we hear the first lady talk about when she talks about the future of the country. the first lady has been referred to as the president's secret weapon. if you look at her approval ratings, they are at 66% according to one recent poll that's higher than the president's. so she's in this battleground state of colorado where that type of message certainly will resonate with voters there. the obama campaign knows that she's a powerful tool. the romney campaign also believes that mitt rom my's wife also a powerful campaign tool on the trail. >> thanks so much, kristin. >> absolutely. sfx: sounds of marching band and crowd cheering sfx: sounds of marching band and crowd cheering so, i'm walking down the street, sfx: sounds of marching band and crowd cheering just you know walking, sfx: sounds of marching band and crowd cheering and i found myself in the middle of this parade honoring america's troops. which is actually quite fitting because
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and i thought "i can't do this, it's just too hard."
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then there was a moment. when i decided to find a way to keep going. go for olympic gold and go to college too. [ male announcer ] every day we help students earn their bachelor's or master's degree for tomorrow's careers. this is your moment. let nothing stand in your way. devry university, proud to support the education of our u.s. olympic team. we are awaiting the contempt
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vote in the committee hearing involving eric holder. we told it could happen at any moment. nbc's pete williams has been polling the developments lou outthe day and joins us now from washington. pete, as i understand it, this vote is an in-committee vote first. but what happens next? >> then it goes to the full house. if the full house votes to find him in contempt, then it is sent to the u.s. attorney. the federal prosecutor here in washington who works for the justice department. and the federal law says when the u.s. attorney gets one of these, he's required to convene a grand jury. now that much is certain. what happens next is not. because it is a long standing view of the justice department that congress can't tell the justice department who to prosecute. that's a separation of powers issue. secondly, when the president asserts executive privilege, it is a long stand practicing of both republican and democratic administrations that the justice department will stop and will not seek to prosecute and executive branch official
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covered by a claim of executive privilege. i can tell what you happens next. goes to the full house. but after that all bets are off. >> i guess that begs the question, pete, what's the point of this you a part from the theatrical spectacle we are seeing today? as i understand it, this would take at least two years to get to court proceedings if at all. >> it could. at the end of two years this congress ceases to exist. house term spends and contempt citation would vanish at that point. there have been about a dozen cabinet members who have been cited for contempt either by committee or the full house. and nearly every case it worked out. so i guess you could say on the one hand that's part of what this process is all about. turning up the heat and eventually both sides, you know, looks great for the house now but when it gets into the court it may not look owe good for the house. the equity changed and there's just -- the courts said in the past that, you know, you guys work this out. we don't want to referee these
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disputes. they eventually get worked out this way. you say it is political theater but, you know, i guess you can say in the house's defense that's part of the long-material bargaining strategy here. >> and i'm assuming that the president's exerting of executive privilege would apply to a grand jury as it would today at any point. >> why. i mean, it applies to -- what base you cannily the justice department said there is. >> pete williams, thanks so much for joining us, pete. >> you bet. >> thank you for watching. dylan ratigan is here to take us forward into the hour and the vote we expect will take place. all yours. >> thank you. >> pleasure. >> you are going the leave me, walk away? we have three days together and you are all pleasure, good night, see you later, get out of here? >> no. you know the house is about to vote and it is an important one and i think you want to get on to the show so you can cover it
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for our viewers. >> fair enough. no, no. i understand. normally we exchange a cordial word at this hour. lovely wednesday afternoon to you. i'm dylan ratigan. sweltering first day of summer in new york city. things getting heated again in egypt as we monitor that vote with eric holder. in the middle east now, thousands this evening are packed into tarir square. protesting new steps towards an aggressive military rule which is more or less a verge of what they have been dealing with since mubarak was ousted. today as big store write is the critical condition of egypt and its government facing a worsening political crisis. this as the country's former president, hosni mubarak, report


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