tv State of the Union 2013 MSNBC February 12, 2013 8:00pm-1:00am EST
were a part of the search efforts to find dorner. >> what is the situation now with the burnt house? the house is burning quite significantly. it doesn't seem that anybody could survive in there. how soon before they go in and confirm whether he is there or not? >> i don't know how soon that will be. probably when it's safe to do so. >> is it an abandoned cabin or occupied? >> they believe it was a rental, and that there was no one there. >> but how sure can you be? how secure is the area around that house? how well were your helicopters watching the area while he was in there and this was playing out? how sure are you? >> i can't answer that right now. >> that whoever was in there is still in there. >> i don't know. i don't know. i found out just when i arrived that the cabin was on fire. >> just to confirm, there has been no further gunfire from the home since that fire broke out? >> it's my understanding that since the fire began at the
cabin, there has been no other gunfire. >> and what can you tell all the residents of big bear and the surrounding area at the moment as the sun is about to set. this guy still on the loose? >> i can't answer that for you. >> but it's a possibility? >> cindy, thank you. thank you for talking to us. >> so you just heard an update from syndrome cindy bachman with the sheriff's department. they're not exactly sure through all the shooting that anned earlier today -- >> there you saw the most interesting question of the night. christopher dorner on the loose or not, or did he burn in that cabin. john yang still with us from the l.a. bureau of nbc news. john, that was quite a news conference, leaving us with nothing really except the possibility that the person being pursued here, christopher dorner who may be responsible for four killings right now is on the loose again. >> that's right there. is no indication. i mean clearly they say this is
the cabin where he was holed up, that the fire, they're not sure how the fire started. they're not letting anyone near the fire. and clearly, it seems to be burning unchecked. it's not clear how tight a circle they had around that house that they could make sure that he didn't escape or whether they can tell whether he had escaped. now, i can tell you that they have opened up a number of roads that had been blocked in the area. a number of our nbc news crews have been held up at checkpoints. they are now making their way closer, although the area around that cabin is still blocked. the closest checkpoint that they're allowing the press, where they're gathering the press is about 20 miles away. that would seem to indicate that they feel confident that they have secured, they have boxed that area in. that there is no way he can get out and expand beyond that area. but we just don't know for sure if he is in that cabin, which is
clearly now looking like it's burning to the ground. >> right. >> or whether he got out. >> well, the question of sequence comes to bear here. why would they bring the big giant lights they were bringing in here if they intended to smoke bomb the place first. as we saw in philadelphia years ago, sometimes these inflammatory bombs do go into flames. they don't just cause smoke. therefore the question what were the lights for, if we're hearing as it's getting dark out there watching the house burn down. >> that's a very good point about philadelphia, chris. and she said earlier in the briefing that they brought in the lights because think think it's going to be a very long night. and as you heard clint van zandt say, that they would probably want to end this before the sun goes down. >> well, in the world of speculation, because we're covering a live event which is extraordinary. john, why don't you bring us up to date on people who were hoping to spend their evening sort of savoring the state of the union. we'll get to that in a half hour now it looks like on msnbc.
rachel maddow will be co-anchoring it with me, coverage starting at 8:30 tonight. give us a sense to the newcomer what are we talking about? we're looking at this fellow on the right, christopher dorner, former police officer. in los angeles, a former marine officer. a very bright guy based on what we have been able to watch so far, and very media savvy and very violent. >> he is accused of killing -- he is suspected in the killing of four people now. two of them police officers. and he has been on the run. there has been a major manhunt in the southern california from the mountains of san bernardino county to the border of mexico now for six days without much progress. it seemed like the trail had gone cold until about 12:22 this afternoon pacific time. the san bernardino sheriff's office got a call about a car theft. it's not clear yet about whether
it was a home -- a burglary or a car theft. anyway, they were told to be on the lookout, that a guy who looked like christopher dorner would be driving. they thought to be driving a white pickup truck. he was spotted by some california fish and wildlife warden. there was a brief exchange of gunfire. he fled into the forest. and then holed up in this cabin that we're now looking at that is being reduced to ashes right now. there was a gunfight with officers. two deputies from the san bernardino county sheriff's office were shot, one fatally. one is in surgery, expected to survive. and then a little bit ago, we got reports of smoke rising from this area. and now we're told that the house where the cabin where he was holed up is on fire. they're not letting anyone near. we just saw actually maybe 15, 20 minutes ago a fire truck passed the checkpoint about 20
miles away. but as you can see, it is burning unchecked. you still have black smoke, which indicates that you're not pouring water on it yet. it would turn white with steam. but, again, no sense of where dorner is. if he got out of the house. if he was still in the house when the fire started. who started the fire. we just don't know. >> you know, in so many ways, this story has been captivating, the l.a. community as well as the country now because of its -- all the elements of a l.a. chase, a highway chase, looking for this person. the vastness of los angeles territory, the media involvement, the media savvy of this person we're pursuing here, the police are, talking to charlie sheen, or communicating with him, rather, talking about the various media personalities that he has been watching over the years. trying to get his manifesto out to the public, his grievance against lapd for what he
alleges, and i don't know if anyone in the world supports his alleged allegations of racism in the department. of course, it had that reputation decades ago. and of course his grievance says oftentimes you find people who have had problems with the bureaucracy and feel they have never gotten out of it. two police officers have been killed now. two other people have been killed, the daughter and fiance of a police captain. in fact, it was the police captain who was defending him in his case against the department. they're all dead now. a police officer killed just today from the san bernardino deputy sheriff's department. all that going on as we speak. he may be on the loose, john. this story doesn't look like it's coming to the close we thought it would just a half hour ago. >> no. keep going back to what you said at the top of when i first joined you on your show. you compared it to a movie, "high sierra" or "white heat."
it has all the elements. that's i think one reason why it has captivated people across the country. here in los angeles, of course, it has been a fact of life, a daily fact of life for six days now, this manhunt, police checks, checkpoints. people getting reports of someone looking like dorner. and so they empty out a store, a hardware store, and they check everybody in the store one by one, asking for their id. and this has been a daily fact of life here. and just captivated everybody. and then sort of dominated the news, dominated the headlines. local stations now have been on the air with this here in los angeles all afternoon. >> watching this. >> it's an l.a. story, certainly. we're going to go to joel rubin, a reporter for "the l.a. time." he has been talking to sources at the scene. thank you for joining us tonight. this is a story that is happening right as we speak. it's very difficult to get the whole picture. your thoughts or what you've been able to report.
>> it's very hard to get the whole picture. you're right there. is a lot of contradictory information, or at least a lot of hesitant, unverified information coming in. we're trying to make heads or tails of it all. now it seems to be mostly a waiting game as authorities on the scene, you know, as i'm sure you've seen on tv, the cabin where he is thought to be holed up is largely engulfed in flames. as a matter of safety, authorities aren't going to approach it until they can safely do so. there were some conflicting reports from our sources about whether authorities had actually made entry into the cabin before the flames broke out. i don't think they had. so it's still a waiting game to see what they find inside. >> again, the question of sequence. we've been watching the arrival of armored personnel carriers, at least one. we've been hearing about giant lights being brought up to the scene in an attempt, it looked like to hold an all-night barricade situation and do it safely, where you have men who are being carried in an apc
where they can't be shot, but they can stand right there at the scene. and of course putting lights on the scene, you can avoid the suspect from escaping. but all that seems to be gone now. that's all moot now because the cabin is burning. and it's hard to believe that he stayed in there on purpose. you have to wonder whether there wasn't some sort of brilliant distraction play here by the man being pursued here. >> yeah. all along it's been a question of who is christopher dorner. is he a masterful, well-trained disciplined navy sailor and cop who could pull off something like you're proposing, or is he somebody who got in way over his head and had delusions of grandeur about what he was capable of. certainly there are the people out there who think that he is always one step ahead of the authorities. but we're hearing and the story we're following, we're assuming is true is that he is in that
cabin, although time will tell to see if that's true. >> and the question is why did he remain. >> yeah, well, again, there were some indications that he may have been injured in the initial gunfire. >> i see. >> there was a rifle seen on the television images, there was a rifle seen on the road outside of the cabin with what looked like to be some blood outside. and there was some speculation amongst police officers that i spoke to that were monitoring the situation that was his and his blood. so they thought he might have been injured before he went into the cabin. >> the story is developing. and this kind of story is such a los angeles story, as i've been saying. tell me about the mood out there in the city. your readership, and why this has been such a grabber, even as it developed in the beginning with this fellow with a grievance against the lapd. he claimed it was a racist situation. that hasn't been backed up by anyone that involved him going on this murder rampage of killing four people now
allegedly. and perhaps going to kill more. tell me about the readership you've got whom. you talking to out there? people seem to be rapt in their attention. >> very much so. the lapd holds a pretty -- people are fascinated with the lapd to begin with. there is a sort of base level of interest that runs in the city for the lapd. it is a storied institution. it has a very infamous and famous past. so you start out from that, and you add on to a story like you outlined that really hollywood couldn't make up if they tried. it has all the elements of a movie that we probably will see some day in the theaters when screenwriters get ahold of it. but it has been a story that the city has gripped on to. our readership quite literally can't get enough of it. and traffic to our website is through the roof. it's really a story that has gained interest unlike anything we've seen in a long time. >> well, you know, california
has always been seen of the land of the second start, the fresh start. second chapter in their lives, people go out there and start all over again. and then you the mountains, again, a great redoubt, a great place to hide. that's why fiction movies like "high sierra", a place to go to if you're desperate. here is a story, a man attend of his rope. knowing he faces capital punishment, having shot a police officer and killed him. so much of this is coming together now in what we're watching here of this burning cabin. this is the stuff of which great police stories are told. and of course it's all part of our population out of 350 people, we're focusing on two people tonight, this guy, christopher dorner, and the president of the united states. one is giving a state of the union address. and the other is perhaps in that burning cabin. >> very much so. it is a local story. ultimately all news is
ultimately local. as you said it has all the makings of a story that people are naturally obsessed with. he wrote this alleged manifesto that police attribute to him and made it clear that he wasn't afraid to die. and that sets up a really dangerous undesirable situation for the cops who are hunting him, because he has shown his willingness to kill. and has now to keep doing so until he is killed. and that he wouldn't be taken alive. it really is a dramatic, dangerous situation. >> i tell you, commissioner bit bratton was on here a few minutes ago. and he was steadfastly defending the honor of the lapd saying all the stories from the past, as bad as they were about racism in the department in the '80s, have been corrected. that the perception of most of your -- well, you can't say in general. generally is that the perception that they have cleaned up their act? >> very much. so and i think we have to -- yes, we have to acknowledge that the lapd of the past is not the
lapd of today. they have under bratton while he was here, he pushed through and oversaw a very dramatic reform of the department as the federal government came in and forced changes down the department's throat after several scandals. bratton latched on to the changes and made sure that the department actually bought into them. and in doing so really changed the story line of the lapd. and that said, this whole episode, while you would think nobody would want to touch dorn were a ten-foot pole we have been inundated with e-mails and calls from lapd cops and from the public that say the old lapd is still alive and well. even if that's not the case, and i don't think it is, the memories and the pain and the scars from that time are still very much on the surface. >> it often goes down to personal experiences with the police that are anecdotal, but of course they drive how you think about any life experience. they dominate your thinking. and of course the past is always
with. thank you, joel rubin of "the l.a. time." clint van zandt is now with us. clint, thank you. i've been watching you on knbc as we monitor the situation. do we have clint? we don't have clint. >> yeah, i'm up. >> thank you for joining u. clint, here we are once again in a live situation where it's hard to read the future. and a burning cabin, we're watching on the knbc helicopter. it's burning away. we don't know if christopher dorner was in that cabin and presumed dead at this point, or he managed to set that up as a kind of distraction while he escaped. >> well, you know, not withstanding the political aspects of it, i was at waco, and i was a hostage negotiator there. i negotiated with david koresh. and i saw when the davidians set the cabin on fire, when the cabin burned, i saw that. and there was this looming question, chris, at waco were
there secret tunnels that the davidians could come out? and many people feared not only would we not be able to save the women and children, but perhaps that koresh himself would have come out of a tunnel only to arise, you know, three days later almost like a christ-type character. >> yeah. >> and it took a day or two for that building to cool down. and then you had to go in. and as you know, i don't have you to do the for instance sings. you have to identify the teeth based upon dental records. so if dorner is still inside of there, and either died at his own hands or died at the hands of law enforcement, it may still be a while before we're able to identify, number one, if somebody is in there. and them two, who that person is. >> what would be the sequence of events? if he were wounded and couldn't move, he would start a fire around him that woo be the only possibility, right? he would have to start the fire and know he couldn't get out. >> two ways.
if law enforcement made a decision to put gas, smoke, or anything else in, some of those rounds, for example, that you can either fire from a shotgun or fire from an m-79 have a pyrotechnic capability or aspect to them. even though law enforcement wouldn't fire them in there to intentionally start a fire, in a wooden cabin like that, something could have happened. so just by the introduction of certain types of gas, it could have ignited something inside. or the shooting that took place could have knocked over, you know, a gas lantern or something. >> sure. >> or dorner could have lit it off. >> going back to the experience in philadelphia with the move situation there, what form of weapon is it? is it meant to create smoke and force the person out? is it meant to gas them out? or is it meant to burn a building down? >> well, i think in this particular case, law enforcement had no reason, chris, to try to go inside. as you've reported, we lost
another law enforcement officer today, and one critically wounded. the last thing if i would have been an on-scene commander, i would not have wanted to commit a s.w.a.t. team to go inside when this guy very well was firing semiautomatic weapons at law enforcement. >> right. >> so i would have put gas, smoke, or anything at my disposal in to force him out before i would have taken a chance on another law enforcement officer getting shot. >> what will be the plan of action now as the night continues. if there are no developments, and the fire simply goes out some time tonight, the next hour or two, will there be a perimeter setup? will there be a manhunt that continues? >> well, i think law enforcement is probably satisfied itself that it has a good perimeter. as you and i talked on your show earlier. >> right. >> this afternoon, there is going to be an inner and an outer perimeter. and i think law enforcement would be fairly comfortable that nobody was able to run from that
cabin, even under the cover of smoke from that fire and get away. if they have satisfied themselves that whoever was inside shooting could not have gotten away, i would say they'll keep a perimeter set around that cabin tonight. they'll probably bring auxiliary lights in. but they'll wait until tomorrow before they go in and see what is actually inside that cabin. again, for safety of law enforcement officers. >> but we will be able to determine through forensic examination of what ever is left in there, whether mr. dorner was there or not. there won't be a mystery left here for conspiracy theorists? >> no. i would guarantee you probably -- as you know, the fbi has got a disaster team. and men and women of that teenagers that's their job to go in to recover the -- even in a fire or an aircraft crash or something like that. they find whatever human skull, bones, anything like that. and they would already have
probably dorner's dental records in their hand. and they may well have already gotten dna swabs from at least his mother. so if they find bones and they're able to get a dna from inside the bones or the dental record as the fastest way, if they can go in and worst case scenario they find a skull and it has certain fillings inside the dentistry of that skull, they'll be able to identify it for all practical purposes if it's dorner as his remains. >> clint, here is the challenge. if this is how the story ends, gives us an explanation as to what happened here. what is the story of christopher dorner? >> i think it's a very sad story. i think it's someone who has painted themselves as a victim all of his life, who has not necessarily taken responsibility for his challenges. hey, chris, as you said earlier, we all have problems. everybody gets screwed by their boss or have problems with their agencies or their wife or their girlfriend. those things happen. that's why we call it life.
instead of a fairy tale. and in this particular case, losing his job with the lapd, him feeling that it was done, it wasn't the way it was supposed to have been done, that he was discriminated against. losing his job in the navy. but then this just shows someone who's got an ego as big as all outdoors. probably some significant emotional challenges. all of this pent-up energy that could have been used for good to go out and take other human lives. chris, we're going to be waking up tomorrow morning and the next day and saying how sad. number one, so sad for the people that christopher dorner is believed to have killed and injured. and number two, that he wasn't able to resolve his own problems. and if there is anything to be gained from this, anything, it's black, white, whatever color, whatever race, wherever we come from cultural wise, we have to work these situations out.
but once you get a legal opinion that said my friend, we listen to the case, and that's the way it goes. we have to learn how to take the bad news with the good news in life. christopher dorner could not handle bad news. when it got too heavy for him, he chose to act out against everyone. and the epicenter of his anger and rage was the 10,000 men and women of the los angeles police department. and everybody else in society who would have stood with him. >> yeah, i think he engaged, if he did, in group guilt, killing not just police officers, but killing the daughter of his former police captain who was defending him in his case, killing her fiance, then again shooting two other officers, killing one today. this is all alleged, but it's all pretty much compacted now in this story we're watching as these flames rise up from the tree there's in the san
bernardino mountains in the big bear territory there. what a story. clint, my last thoughts to you as an expert, is this going to be a classic case? is this going to be the kind of thing we study in human resources cases where you have to identify people, a judgment against them they don't like? you have to keep an eye on them or what? >> it's just like gun violence we see across this country, chris. a lot of people have mental health conditions. others just act out. the biggest challenge for profilers when we look at people who commit terrible crimes is why today? why not yesterday? why not next week? why did they choose this particular time? that will probably be the lesson learned in this. but unfortunately, whether we call this an emotionally challenged man or terrible situation of domestic terrorism, we will see other terrible situations in this country. we just have got to be big enough to try to help people try to deal with it. and, you know we have to pray for the dead and the families that are going to be burying
their loved ones this week. >> well, i guess the good story, if there is one here that this is still a news story that in this country of 350 million people, we mostly go to work. we put up with things that are done to us we don't think are fair. we have race still as a problem this country in certain parts. we have life that is difficult. as you say, it's not a fairy tale. people get up in the morning. they go to work. they get it done. they don't do things like this. unfortunately, this is still a news story when somebody behaves as this man certainly has here. it's quite a story. hopefully it's a simple case of a strange case of a very strange situation with someone who had great media savvy, who had the brains to keep track of hollywood, to keep up with charlie sheen, to establish relationships with people through the media, to in some strange way enjoy his situation. at the same time wreak havoc in anyone he came in contact with. it is quite a story. it's great to have you on. we're going to continue. we're going to go right now back to john yang for the very latest on this case before we go to cover the state of the union
under the leadership of rachel maddow. let's go right now quickly to john yang. the latest capsule of what has happened tonight. >> chris, you see the picture there. that tells the story. the fire burning down. there is very little left oft that cabin to burn. it looks like it's down to the foundation now. this is the cabin where according to san bernardino county sheriff's department a man believed to be christopher dorner had been holed up, had been trading gunfire with law enforcement officials. they said that there was no contact with dorner once he got inside that cabin. the only thing they got coming out of that cabin was gunfire. a fire again somehow. it's still not clear how. and now the cabin has burned to the ground. they believe that dorner did not escape that cabin. and it is going to be a while until they can get in there and see what remains in there, chris. >> so there was no inflammatory
materials shot at that cabin? there was nothing launched in there like a smoke bomb or anything like that? there is some reports from the scene that tear gas canisters were fired. there is some reports that there was a smoke bomb. they didn't know which direction it came in, whether it came out of the cabin, whether it was going into the cabin. but the san bernardino county sheriffs official said that there is no -- she has no idea how the fire started. >> let me -- who are we relying on right now for the information we're getting, the reporting? is it coming from the san bernardino sheriff's department? is that who is telling what's is going on there, the fire and the immediate surroundings there? >> there some of that there are also some reports we're getting from knbc reporters in the area who have been able to work their sources among the law enforcement to find out -- to get versions of what is going on, reports of what is going on. so it's a mixture. that's why i say we have conflicting reports about what
happened. >> is it dark out there yet in california, in the los angeles area? because i'm looking at a very dark picture here. and how did we know he didn't escape in the dark seasons in. >> exactly. that's the interesting -- that's the question, of how tight a noose were they able to draw around that. you know, were they able to make sure that he is not at large again, that he is not fleeing again into the forest, only to pop up again somewhere. >> well, that's old trade-off, i guess. when you get into a situation, you want to preserve your manpower, make sure nobody gets killed unnecessarily. in keeping your distance, you keep your distance. and he had that opportunity perhaps to escape. we don't know. this could be part of the mystery that we're left with here. bury the forensic experts, according to clint van zandt will be able to determine whether that's him, that he died there or not. it won't end up being like a judge crate other are d.b. cooper kind of story where there are a group of people that hold to his celebrity, if you will. >> there already is sprung up
around southern california a group of people online and on twitter who are essentially supporting him. and talking about i think -- it sort of reflects the tensions between the minority communities in los angeles and the lapd, that there were people saying if they spotted dorner, they wouldn't turn him in, saying that he is standing for a cause. so i think that there already is something of a cult grown up around him, and perhaps, perhaps if this has turned deadly here, he will become a martyr. >> well, i don't think to the whole country. >> no. >> but i think people who regardless of ethnicity or race who have had down and out experiences in life generally, or have had bad experiences with the police department generally that. >> take that experience to heart, obviously. that's human nature. and obviously, that's the situation we'd like to see diminished practically to disappearance in our country at some point. but there we have the lapd
focused upon by the alleged criminal in this case. the former police officer and former military officer. who lost both those positions in life. was divorced by his wife. apparently had a lot of bad breaks in life, a judgment against him by the lapd to the point he was a down and outer himself. he began to take life in revenge focusing on the lapd, killing two police officers and two others, wounding another police officer and perhaps dying in that fire we're still watching tonight. although when you get into speculation, i think you're in trouble here. so i'm going to keep my eyes open tonight on this case as everyone else will. we'll take a break right now and we'll come right back on msnbc.
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let's go back right now to knbc out in los angeles for the moment we've been watching all night that may have come, the death perhaps of the fugitive, christopher dorner. >> he was also a marine who did two tours overseas in a war zone. he was said to be expert in s.w.a.t. tactics. he was a training officer. leaves behind a wife and two young children, a 10-year-old and a 4-year-old. we want to add as well, we're
just getting word that highway 38, that's where john cadiz klemack has been reporting from, that highway is now reopened to residents only. people heading up into the mountains will be allowed to go back into their homes. >> we can see it clearly here in our newschopper 4 picture that that fire still burning as the sun goes down. and, again, law enforcement officials telling us that they are just going to let it burn. it is too dangerous not only for law enforcement officers to go in there and attempt to make any communication or contact with this person they believe is christopher dorner, but also for any sort of fire officials. so they're just watching this burn like we are, live on the air on nbc 4. let's go to kim baldinado, who has been covering these officers who are involved in the shooting today. she is at loma linda medical center. what can you tell us? what is the latest from there? >> we are continuing to watch law enforcement officers arrive here at loma linda university medical center.
where two san bernardino county sheriff's deputies were brought about 2:30 this afternoon. they were airlifted here by helicopter. immediately law enforcement officers started to arrive. they are actually gathered outside the emergency room here, which has been blocked off to regular traffic. about an hour ago, san bernardino county sheriff john mcmahon came out and addressed the media. i believe we have a little bit of what he said now. okay. we do not have that tape. but i can tell you, he confirmed for us that one of the deputies who was shot has died when he arrived here at the hospital. apparently two san bernardino county sheriff's deputies came across a truck matching the description of the one stolen, allegedly stolen by christopher dorner. dorner then allegedly got out of his truck, ran into the forest and a firefight ensued. two of the deputies were shot. one has since died. sheriff mcmahon tells us the other is in surgery, but is expected to survive. they're not releasing the names
of either the deceased deputy or the one that is injured. they're waiting until all families have been notified. and have not given us any personal information such as how long they have been on the force, any of that information at all. they're saying it's a very difficult day for them, as you can imagine. not just for san bernardino county sheriffs, but for all law enforcement. it's a very tight knit community, and they have lost one of their own today. reporting live from loma linda, kim baldinado, nbc 4 news. >> all right, kim, thank you. as we continue to look at this fire burn, just for people who know the area, i'm going to give you an exact location here. it is roughly highway 38 and glass road. if you drive down that road, you may have noticed sort of a compound there. we spoke with the own their afternoon. there are about seven cabins in the area. she says this may be the main cabin. they're very austere. they don't even have running water, but there is a propane tank and there is wood inside. no provisions other than that. and so this is what we're watching burning right now.
here is what led up to this situation now. we just got a press release from the california department of fish and wildlife. and they really sort of started all this afternoon. at about 12:45, one of their officers was heading down highway 38, recognized a man who fit christopher dorner's description in a car that was traveling in the opposite direction. the officer pursued the car, and that's when the shooting started. we understand then two deputies from the san bernardino county sheriff's department became first responders. they called for mutual aid. they showed up. they described a suspect who looked like christopher dorner. some sort of gunfight ensued there. it went on for about a half hour, and we understand from our sources that hundreds of rounds were exchanged there. they said the suspect fitting christopher dorner's description then took off on foot, took off into the woods and barricaded himself inside a cabin here. >> and we had several reporters listening to that scanner traffic. jacob rascon was there.
he is stopped at one of the barricades, said that there were screams. you could hear the gunfire. they were saying that the suspect is has barricaded himself in the kill zone. as we know, one deputy with the san bernardino county sheriff's department killed in that firefight. we've also been talking to an fbi profiler, clint van zandt earlier who is telling us their intentions, the law enforcement there, if they had their way. that would end this before nightfall. but as we see, at 5:38, the temperature dropping and the sun going down up there in big bear. this is still very much an active situation. we want to go back to one of our other reporters on the scene. i believe we're checking in with nbc 4's john cadiz klemack who is live at one of the checkpoints. okay. we're not going to klemack at the moment. >> you know, let me just add a little bit here. we were fascinated listening to the fbi profiler, clint van
zandt. he sort of described what sort of scenario would take place here. and he did that because there were no telephone communications. there wasn't electricity here. so he knew that the suspect, whoever was barricaded inside this house would not be watching, would not be able to glean any information. he said typically a s.w.a.t. team would set up an inner perimeter, which is exactly what we understand they did. the outer perimeter was are comed by patrol officers. so they closed off the roads. that's what the patrol officers did. and then the tactical teams, the s.w.a.t. teams, they then moved in closer to the cabin. and we don't know how this fire started at this point. we can tell you it's been going for about an hour and a half. but it could have been tear gas fired in there, something. he said they would try to establish some sort of communication, but given what the chain of events has been, they were not going to endanger any other lives. and it was an immediate situation. they needed to have this done,
or something done here before nightfall. >> and he said there were a number of tools they could use. you mentioned the tear gas, the flash-bang grenades if they wanted to try to coax him out of the house. but at this point we're being told right now they're just sitting there and watching this burn. john cadiz klemack reporting earlier from one of the roadblocks on highway 38 that he saw truckloads of lights driving up the hill. and, in fact, if you look closely at the picture, you can sort of see some lights off to the right of your picture there. whether those are for law enforcement officers there to try to continue their look at the scene, we just don't know. again, what is happening on the ground, a standoff with the man believed to be christopher dorner. this is the ex-lapd officer, the former u.s. navy reservist who wrote that manifesto waging war on the lapd. this goes back to super bowl sunday. we had vikki vargas reporting
from irvine on the murder of a young couple there, and from there it escalated throughout the week. this manhunt has gone all the way down to san diego and back. and now here we are at big bear again. >> and just yesterday we received video of a man purported to be christopher dorner at a short chalet in torrance buying scuba tanks. there had also been reports given his navy background that he was trying to steal a ship -- not a ship, a boat, and there was a hotel raided in mexico. but again, all along the search has never really left big bear, although it was scaled back just a bit on sunday and monday of this week. and here we find today that suspect matching christopher dorner has been in the mountains all along. kim baldinado has been covering this aspect of the story. we talk about the two deputies who were first responders. they were both taken to loma linda medical center, which is a major trauma center. one of the deputies lost his life. what do you know about the other one right now, kim?
>> colleen, they're being very tight-lipped about both deputies at this point. not releasing identifying information about them. we do know that the second deputy who is still alive is in surgery. sheriff john mcmahon with san bernardino county sheriffs told us an hour ago that that second deputy is expected to survive. now, it's starting to get dark here, but i'm going to ask my photographer, sergio, if he can push into the entrance of the emergency room where a large number of law enforcement officers and family members have gathered outside the emergency room. they're keeping the media and everybody else, the general public far enough away to give them some privacy, to give them them some space. adds you can imagine, a very difficult time for everyone in law enforcement when one of their own is killed. now according to sheriff john mcmahon, this is how it all went down. his deputies saw the truck matching the description of the one that dorner was driving. they tried to attempt to pull him over. dorner saw them. he ran off into the forest.
gunfire was exchanged, and that is when the two deputies were injured. they're not releasing any information at all either about the extent of the injuries at that second deputy suffered, but both were airlift heard to loma linda university medical center, calling, as you mentioned, a major trauma center for this region. it's generally where they bring the worst of the worst as the pio for this hospital told us earlier. so, again, we are just watching and waiting in standby mode. san bernardino county spokesperson did tell us they do expect to come out with another update later on tonight. i'm not sure of the time frame. as soon as we get more, we will definitely bring to it you. reporting live from loma linda, kim baldinado, nbc 4 news. >> all right, kim. we want you to stand by for just a moment. but i want to read this release that just came. in it's a story from the associated press. and i'm reading it with you for the very first time. the man believed to be the fugitive ex-cop christopher dorner never came out of a
california mountain cabin, and a single shot, this is according to the associated press, a single shot was heard inside before the cabin was engulfed in flames. that's according to a law enforcement official who apparently was talking to the associated press. we are trying to get more information on that. and we will bring it to you as soon as we get it. but, again, there have been a lot of sort of red herrings with this. they found his id card in the middle of the street and other things in a dumpster in san diego. so there have been sort of breadcrumbs, if you will, left by christopher dorner in all of this. no one who knows an lapd cop or someone who is in the navy reserves could think that they would leave their id card in the middle of the road or they would lose it next to an airport. it just doesn't seem plausible, if you will. >> and the way this story has developed, the san bernardino county sheriff's department never originally was mentioned in this manifesto.
but the manifesto by christopher dorner said that any reinforcing law enforcement agency helping the lapd could potentially be one of his victims. and as we know, the san bernardino county sheriff's department became heavily involved as soon as his truck was found up in the mountains. kim, if we can bring you back, i know that you talked to one of the spokespeople there. just about how the department, the san bernardino county sheriff's department is reacting to the news of one of their officers being killed, one of their deputies and the other one being injured. what are they saying about that news? >> well, witt, as you can imagine, very tough for them to talk about. when the sheriff in the san bernardino sheriff's department came out, spoke for less than a minute. obviously, had difficulty even giving us that news, the confirmation that one of his deputies had died. gave a brief description of how the shooting occurred. and then left.
and then the intern county sheriffs spokesperson stepped in and gave a little bit more information, but she didn't have very much either. she had just arrived. i don't know if you can see. there is more law enforcement arriving now. we're seeing police cars arrive. we've seen a lot of plainclothes -- sergio, there is some motorcycle officers arriving now. it's getting dark, difficult to tell what agency that is. but even at this late hour, after a couple of hours of the deputies arriving here, more of the law enforcement family continues to arrive. we've seen some in plainclothes cars with parking lot lights as well. so i imagine this is going to be the scene throughout the night. they are here for the family of the deceased. they are here for the family and for their fellow deputy who was still in surgery here. so a very somber mood right now. and we're hoping to get more information shortly. >> all right, kim. they are there tonight and tomorrow morning. no doubt many of those same officers will be in riverside for the funeral of michael crain
will be laid to rest. he of course was the riverside officer who was shot and killed last thursday evening. kim, did you have something to add? no, i think we're just looking at some of the law enforcement. we can tell you that we understand -- the peyer in the mountains right now, they're calling for the fire department to come in. so that would indicate that the scene is safe. let's listen in to the mayor. >> first of all, i want to say that on behalf of the people of los angeles, our hearts and prayers are with the san bernardino deputy who was shot and killed today. our prayers are with their family, with the people of san bernardino with the sheriff's department of that county. i want to thank them for their bravery. i want to thank all of the law
enforcement professionals who have day and night tried to bring christopher dorner to justice. and obviously i'm not going to comment on what most of you have seen as i have. because i'm not in a position to do that. that's for the representatives of the san bernardino sheriff's department. i also want to say something about the men and women and their families who were targeted. i've called a number of them over the last few days to tell them that our hearts and prayers are with them. none of us can imagine what they've had to go through, what their children have had to go through, because of the threats of christopher dorner. and i just want to thank the members of the los angeles police department who put their lives on the line every single day. thank you very much.
we're live. i'll say now in spanish -- [ speaking spanish ] >> okay, we're listening to mayor villaraigosa talking about -- he expressed condolences to the families of the deputies who were shot today, especially to the family of -- >> that's of course antonio villaraigosa, the mayor of los angeles. we're going to go right now to john yang, who is our nbc correspondent at the bureau in los angeles. john, we're going to wrap up our coverage of this and go to the state of the union coverage at 9:00 eastern, of course, which is still the big national story tonight. but this one certainly challenged it. this is a saga, which you have been covering for all these days. >> it is. it has been going on really for more than a week. but the public manhunt has been going on since last thursday. we're now looking at pictures
earlier of the cabin where we believe christopher dorner was holed up, burning. it is now essentially burned to the ground. and we can now see in rather dark pictures, we can see that some fire truck, at least one fire truck has now moved in. and the smoke has turned white, suggesting that water is now being poured on to that fire. today one more sheriff's deputy died, one more law enforcement officer died in this pursuit of christopher dorner. another one was shot several times. but we're being told by law enforcement sources in san bernardino county that he was not -- none of the wounds were to vital areas. he is expected to survive. that same source is also telling nbc producers on the scene that there was -- there were, rather, two hostages held over the weekend in that first cabin where dorner was holed up. that he over the weekend he was
hiding in that cabin. remarkably enough, virtually directly across the street from the command post, and was in there over the weekend with these two hostages. today left somehow, and then we're now being told emerged from the woods from the forest and hijacked another car. and then that car was spotted by police. he emerged, traded gunshots with officers, wardens from the california fish and wildlife division. and then ran to this cabin where he was holed up, exchanged more gunfire with law enforcement. somehow a fire began, and now that cabin has burned to the ground. and they have now moved in. they said they would not move in until it was safe. but now apparently they have moved in to start to put that fire out there. are a lot of details we don't know, but that's where we stand right now, chris.
>> how much of the story involving perhaps the purchase of scuba equipment and perhaps a plan to escape south of the border has been verified, john? >> well, we do know -- there was an affidavit filed by the u.s. marshall service in support of the charges yesterday. and it did say that some of his belongings, including an id were found near the san ysidro border crossing south of san diego. and there has also been a report that on i believe it was thursday, at some point last week, that a man who fit dorner's description tried to steal a boat, and told the captain of the boat you can get it back in mexico because that's where i'm headed. but then the bow line of the boat became wrapped up in the propeller and disabled the boat. so it does look like perhaps he
did try to make it south before heading to big bear lake. >> it's so interesting covering that part of the country, as you do, john, and the way people's instincts are trained perhaps by seeing films. you think about o.j., and when they found him when he was after the bronco chase, he was in the possession of disguise material and a passport and evidence at least, circumstantial that he may have been headed for the border. it's so much a part of that story of southern california, the border being there as a place of refuge. it doesn't work for this fellow, apparently. and, again, i go back to the los angeles police department of dreams, los angeles, where all the movies are made we grew up with. and the strange way in which life imitates art. i talked of "high sierra" where bogart hid in the hills and was killed. james cagney going up in flames at the end yelling "top of the world, ma." t
the strange connection between the mind and the love of media attention and the way this person was seeking out media attention, trying to connect in perhaps strange ways with charlie sheen, who has had a troubled past himself, and mentioning names of the media people, myself even. this strange connect between refuge seeking refuge and desperation and still wanting attention. >> and this is a guy who clint van zandt said was angry and had collected all these grievances over the years. he in his manifesto talks about an incident in high school. and even cites the name of the assistant principal he clashed with. cites the name of another student who he clashed with, and clearly had been carrying that with him all that time. and sort of just built up all these other slights that he felt, that he had been railroaded by the lapd because of his race. colleagues on the lapd who had used racial epithets against him. all built up now to this moment, to this conflagration in this
cabin in the mountains outside los angeles. >> a los angeles manhunt, we've been used to them over the years. here is one that ended in the mountains here in san bernardino. we lost a life tonight of a police officer doing his job, in action, killed in action, if you will. a member of the deputies department of the sheriff's department of san bernardino county. and he died in a hospital tonight because of wounds. another sheriff's deputy has survived. he is apparently going to make it, which is great news. at least there is some good news tonight. and we're watching here perhaps in that shack out there, that house over there in the hills the end of the life of the troubled man, christopher dorner who apparently led a spree of killings in the last week, killing two police officers, four people all together, including some clearly innocent people. in fact, all four of them are innocent. and here we go to the end of another saga in a violent country, i must say. but fortunately, as i said before, most of us aren't. anyway, we're going to go now to the probably biggest story of
the night, which is clearly the story we planned on covering on msnbc and my colleague rachel maddow is going to be picking up in a moment. msnbc's coverage of the state of the union address. we're watching the preliminaries here. and i'm going to turn it over to rachel in just a moment. and in fact, it's a good time to do it. rachel, it's all yours. >> thank you, chris. much appreciated. and thank you at home for joining us for the state of the union tonight. our coverage obviously has unfolded not in the way we expected it to because of this breaking news from california, this standoff in the mountains. again, believed to involve former lapd officer christopher dorner, who was essentially declared a one-manuel-armed war on law enforcement. we will let you know if there are important developments in that situation over the course of the night. but tonight in just moments, the president will fulfill his constitutional responsibility to give congress information on the state of the union, as is spelled out in article 2, section 3 of the constitution. i'm rachel maddow. i'm here with chris matthews tonight from new york. we're joined by our colleagues lawrence o'donnell, reverend al
sharpton. ed schultz is in washington to see the speech as is nbc's chuck todd. and former obama campaign adviser robert gibbs is here as well. robert, i understand that i am for the first time tonight able to introduce you as an msnbc contributor. congratulations on that. thanks for being here. >> thank you. i'm happy to be here. >> gun safety reform, immigration reform, climate change, education reform, election reform, ending the war in afghanistan. the president has been explicit that these are all on deck for his second term agenda. how do you pick which of these things can be helped along by prominent placement in a speech like that? >> i think that's what will be interesting to see tonight. the president begins by talking about the budget difficulties and situations we have to deal with over the next couple of weeks. get into a huge priority like immigration and clean energy which the president has. and i expect this speech will
end with a pretty emotional call for doing something on gun safety. >> we're right now looking at a live picture of the justices of the supreme court having been announced and entering. not all of the justices of the supreme court make a habit of attending state of the union. antonin scalia makes a habit of explicitly definitely on purpose not attending. he is actually giving a competing speech tonight because he doesn't like going to the state of the union. robert, there was some speculation during the inaugural address where a lot of the supreme court justices were present as well, that they are part of the intended audience when the president addresses, particularly issues like civil rights, that he is cognizant that his words wash over them as much as they wash over anybody else with important issues like doma and election reform and justice voting rights on deck for the supreme court at this point. does he think that way? >> well, i think he does. and, look, they're always up front. they're in the front row tonight. i sat on that stage of the
inaugural. they were only a few feet away from him. he exemplifies, when you talk about a case like doma or the expansion of gay rights, you know, he represents what is going on in america, and that is a real sea change in our country about how we believe all of us ought to be treated. and i know the president hopes that not just every citizen, but those in judicial positions hear that message as well. >> one last question for you, robert, in terms of the timing here. obviously it was just three weeks ago that the president gave his second inaugural address. how do you divide the labor between an important start of the second term speech like that and a speech tonight i should say and what we're looking at the visual right now as well as the first lady entering the capitol building. between those two speeches, though, robert, how does the president decide? >> well, i think they look at them as two speeches that are bookends for each other. and i think the inaugural is a
big speech with vision and values. i think this speech will be much more detailed in terms of policy and the actual direction that the president wants to take legislatively and what we know will be an incredibly important year in this term. >> robert gibbs, thank you very much for joining us. we'll be talking with you again soon i'm sure. i want to bring in my colleague lawrence o'donnell and al sharpton. we have just a few moments as the president's cabinet will be entering the room right now. michael steele, let me start with you. as a former chairman of the party, republican, looking at the first state of the union of the president's second term tonight, what are you most hoping to hear tonight? >> i'm hoping the president goes big on the economy. i hope he really lays down what he hopes to accomplish in the next 18 months with all the things that are still on the table, the fiscal cliff sequester and a bunch of other items you have to deal with, he has to put that in perspective for the country. tonight it's about partisanship,
yes, but it's also about the president setting a tone for going forward. and republicans had better be prepared to respond to that. >> we have seen the advanced excerpts leaked out. focus was on jobs and the economy. we are told that that will be the centerpiece what the president talks about. al, looking ahead tonight, what are you most looking for? >> the economy, how we're going to deal with creating johnson, as well as the president on immigration, on voting rights. the supreme court will hear oral arguments this month on whether it is constitutional to continue section 5 of the voting rights act. that goes directly to whether the justice department can protect people like the 102-year-old lady that is sitting in the first lady's box tonight. and on gun legislation. hadiya pendleton's parents there. people from newtown there. we need to hear those issue as well. but the economy and jobs will be the centerpiece. but these other areas certainly priorities given who is sitting in the first lady's box. i think the president is
definitely going to raise them. and i think it's definitely going to set a tone for the country for the next several years and even beyond his presidency, if in fact we can get some things done. >> one of the visuals you'll notice, as you're looking at the shots of the capital right now are the green ribbons people are wearing tonight. those are in honor of the victims of sandy hook elementary school, the mass shooting there in december. we are expecting tonight if only because of the guest list from members of congress, more than 30 members of congress giving their tickets to tonight's speech away to somebody associated with an incident of gun violence in this country. but also from the first lady's guest list tonight that the issue of gun violence and gun safety reform will be on the agenda. lawrence, what are you looking ahead to tonight? >> well, what i was just looking at a few minutes ago was john kerry's entrance into the house chamber for the first time as a cabinet member. he walked in with the delegation from the cabinet. and he is as secretary of state recognized as the most important cabinet member.
what i have not figured out is which cabinet member is staying home, because one must. >> oh, i know, i know, i know. it's steven chu, the outgoing energy secretary. so if something catastrophic happens, it will be steven chu. >> he is 13th in line. >> every cabinet member can tell you where they are in the line of success. i once had a cabinet member say to me quite seriously, as to underscore her point, i'm 13th in the line of succession, you know. >> chris matthews. >> it's a lot to chew on. >> you have been holding down the fort, covering the other major story of the night. one of the things that is so important about the state of the union, obviously, it's a constitutional responsibility there is so much decorum and gravitas associated with it. but also, it is a huge media moment there is so much attention on policy and on the relationship between president and the congress. how is that affected by the fact that there is a huge other news story tonight that is taking up half the country's attention? >> well, i think the countries tomorrow will balance the two-stories. i think no matter what the
president says tonight, but i do think gun violence, the fact that this person had rigged their gun for automatic fire. it's easy enough to do it. he is a smart guy. he was a very smart man with guns. the fact that he could use machine gun fire against police officers is very much on the mark here. i want to say one other thing. the one good thing in this past presidential election, which everyone in the country felt good about, except mitt romney, which isn't a bad thing, everybody but one guy was the picture of chris christie of new jersey walking along the beach with president obama. they want to see something get done. they don't want them to like each other, love each other, hold hands, shake hands, just get something done together. and that's what they want to see. i hope we can see some of that tonight. i don't think we will. >> one of the symbolic ways that we will see that, if you are used to watching state of the unions from any year prior to 2011, you're used to seeing half the room sand up while the other half stays seated. and then they switch side whenever the ideology changes in
the comment. that has not happened since 2007 because that's the first year that members of congress started sitting with other members, with members of the other party for watching this address. so you don't just have republicans on one side and democrats on the other. after gabby giffords was shot and nearly killed just days before the state of the union in 2011, democrats and republicans started pairing up and sitting together and not having that obvious partisan split. so you will see that tonight. i don't know whether or not we should see that as something more than just symbolic. the group no labels tonight is also letting people know they say more than 40 members of congress are going to be wearing orange badges that say "fix not fight." it's members of congress who are pairing up, one from each party, promising to meet twice a month and to be problem solvers. are you wearing one of those? >> jon huntsman tried to wear a badge. he tried to be the nominated republican party. partisanship didn't work for jon
huntsman. >> it is awkward to be the no labels party with a label. what does it say there? >> let's see here. i'll get it off for you. it is -- problem solver. i want to get it right. i want to get it right, reverend. committed to fix, not fight. no labels, problem solver. i wanted to get the whole thing, bro. >> all right, bro. >> there is a lot of effort on this, whether it's chris christie and president obama together, whether it is the symbolic nature of sitting together. members of congress treat this as date night. they announce which other member from across the aisle they're it is sitting with. it is sort of a date. claire mccaskill apparently has two republican dates. so she has a three-way date this evening for her seating arrangements. but the state of the union is considered to be one of those high-minded moments, right, where you don't necessarily engage in partisan warfare. you ask people to transcend it. >> it's a great moment. i think we learned from bill
clinton the irony of ironies that people want detail. as much as we like punchy writing and the bottom line lining it. the people want to know. perhaps they're gay. perhaps they're having a situation with abortion rights. perhaps they're involved with an economic problem or a labor problem. they want to hear the answer. and they want the president to get to it, what we call a laundry list. they're on the list, these people. and so as much as we find it process sak prosaic, they find it useful. >> referencing john kerry ahead of time. is there anything that you can tell from what the president has done thus far in his inaugural, in his cabinet selections, in the way he has behaved toward congress since being reelected that gives us sort of a map how a second term might be different than the first? >> i always thought his cabinet selects are based on a real governing effort that does not have a short-term horizon to it. and so i don't find clues in
that other than he takes a very serious approach to it. i do think he has a unique opportunity here with the schedule short-term. and that is the march 1 sequester. this is a night for him to try to box in the republicans on how to go forward with the sequester. and it's a crucial thing. because the republicans are saying these cuts are absolutely draconian, and they will wipe out our national defense. and the president is saying i partially agree with you on that. and here is my proposal for dealing with that, which includes closing some tax loop holes for millionaires andors. and the republicans are saying no, we won't touch those tax loopholes. we are willing to let these horrible defense cuts go in. and so this is one of those moments where the president can cut through those two lines that don't meet each other in the debate, and try to create the picture of this debate. because some people, many people will be hearing about the sequester and these cuts for the
very first time tonight. >> we're told that the president is on his way to the chamber. of course, his entrance into the chamber will be announced by the sergeant at arms, paul irving, who will say the big official thing, and then it will take the president forever to get down the aisle as everybody wants to shake his hand as he approaches the podium. but that is just moments away. >> first time using a microphone. >> to make the announcement? >> instead of mr. speaker! which was always broadcast with basso profundo. >> maybe it will be better. >> there was a talent to the projection in the old days. >> a skill. >> there have been a lot of press leaks this week, a lot of news analysis pieces from people talking to knowledgeable sources, saying we should expect the president in tone to be aggressive tonight, to continue some of the economic populism of his inaugural address. let's pause to hear him introduced here.
>> mr. speaker, the president of the united states. [ applause ] >> i don't know, chris. i don't think the mic ruined it. >> i'm just trying to -- >> these folks, they crowd the aisles. they're there for hours in advance. >> has been there since last week. every single state of the union he gets on the aisle. he doesn't care if it's a democrat or a republican, he is on the aisle. >> you see the president entering along with along with the congressional leadership right behind. you see harry reid, eric cantor there. and members of congress. these are coveted seats. just saying before the president was introduced here, there has
been all this advanced notice that the president will be sort of keeping with his confident, even arguably aggressive tone that he has taken since his reelection. the quote that stood out for me from politico this week, it was assigned to a person close to the drafting of the speech. >> right. >> said the president's approach to the republican party in this speech would be borrowed from the 2500-year-old chinese book philosophy "the art of war." and the quote was "build your opponent a golden bridge to retreat across." . >> i like the quote. and i think that would be probably a good strategy for the president. i mean, i would hope that we don't see a lot of partisan bickering, but i hope he is aggressive in terms of the proposals that he is going to lay out. this being his last term, most people say 18 months and then you start looking lame duck. so very important speech as to what his presidency and his legacy is going to mean.
and i think as people watch, people on the aisles who have been sitting there since the afternoon to get a camera shot more than a hand shot, not all the people grabbing his hand are necessarily going to be aggressively backing his plans. the real deal is going to be when they leave the chamber, what they will do with what he lays out tonight. >> and in terms of the bipartisanship, though, to see the president followed immediately by eric cantor, to see eric cantor shaking hands with the democratic members of congress who are so enthusiastic about the president. >> elijah cummings? >> it was mark udall, the senator from colorado who started in 2011 this tradition of members of opposite parties sitting together. he'll be sitting with lisa murkowski. kerr sten gillibrand will be
sitting with john mccain. joe manchin will be sitting with republican mark kirk. democratic senator mark begich of attorney general will sit with a republican congressman from his own state, don young. in illinois it will be a democratic and republican congress. sitting with republican rodney davis. in virginia they're doing the same thing. secretary john kerry now, in virginia it will be democratic senator tim kaine with randy forbes, president interacting there with members of the supreme court. ruth bader ginsburg, steven breyer. >> probably the most important vote for president obama was right there, the chief justice, who voted for the health care plan. >> that's right. toes are the president's two appointees to the supreme court there. this is sonia sotomayor, two of the unheralded but very, very important accomplishments of his first time, the confirmation of those two supreme court
justices, sonia sotomayor, of course, the first latina supreme court justice in the nation's history. the president now greeting joint chiefs, including ray odierno who is the really tall bald guy. the long, long, long tours of duty as commanding duty in iraq. he is now commanding the entire u.s. army. >> robbie rush, who was the only one to ever defeat barack obama in an election. >> yes. place of honor. >> he showed him, didn't he. >> now with the president taking the dais, you will see joe biden and john boehner throughout him throughout the speech tonight. the president will be handed the speech and will get under way, and there will be a lot of applause, and there will be a constitutional duty fulfilled. let's listen.
thank you. thank you. thank you very much. thank you so much. thank you. thank you very much. thank you. please, everybody have a seat. mr. speaker, mr. vice president, members of congress, fellow americans, 51 years ago, john f. kennedy declared to this chamber that the constitution makes us not rivals for power but partners for progress. it is my task, he said, to
report the state of the union. to improve it is the task of us all. tonight thanks to the grit and determination of the american people, there is much progress to report. after a decade of grinding war, our brave men and women in uniform are coming home. after years of grueling recession, our businesses have created over six million new jobs. we buy more american cars than we have in five years, and less
foreign oil than we have in 20. our housing market is healing. our stock market is rebounding, and consumers, patients and homeowners enjoy stronger protections than ever before. so together we have cleared away the rubble of crisis. and we can say with renewed confidence that the state of our union is stronger. but we gather here knowing that there are millions of americans whose hard work and dedication have not yet been rewarded. our economy is adding jobs but
too many people still can't find full-time employment. corporate profits have skyrocketed to all-time highs. but for more than a decade, wages and incomes had barely budged. it is our generation's task, then, to re-ignite the true engine of america's economic growth, a rising, thriving middle class. it is -- it is our unfinished task to restore the basic bargain that built this country. the idea that if you work hard and meet your responsibilities, you can get ahead, no matter where you come from, no matter what you look like or who you love. it is our unfinished task to make sure that this government works on behalf of the many, and
not just the few. that it encourages free enterprise, rewards individual initiative, and opens the doors of opportunity to every child across this great nation. the american people don't expect government to solve every problem. they don't expect those of us in this chamber to agree on every issue. but they do expect us to put the nation's interests before party. they do expect us to forge reasonable compromise where we can.
for they know that america moves forward only when we do so together, and that the responsibility of improving this union remains the task of us all. our work must begin by making some basic decisions about our budget, decisions that will have a huge impact on the strength of our recovery. over the last few years, both parties have worked together to reduce the deficit by more than $2.5 trillion. mostly through spending cuts, but also by raising tax rates on the wealthiest 1% of americans. as a result, we are more than halfway towards the goal of $4 trillion in deficit reduction that economists say we need to stabilize our finances. now we need to finish the job. and the question is how. in 2011, congress passed a law
saying that if both parties couldn't agree on a plan to reach our deficit goal, about a trillion dollars worth of budget cuts would automatically go into effect this year. these sudden, harsh, arbitrary cuts would jeopardize our military readiness, they would devastate priorities like education and energy and medical research. they would certainly slow our recovery and cost us hundreds of thousands of jobs. that's why democrats, republicans, business leaders, and economists have already said that these cuts, known here in washington as the sequester, are a really bad idea. now, some in congress have proposed preventing only the defense cuts by making even bigger cuts to things like education and job training, medicare, and social security
benefits. that idea is even worse. yes, the biggest driver of our long-term debt is the rising cost of health care for an aging population. and those of us who care deeply about programs like medicare must embrace the need for modest reforms. otherwise our retirement programs will crowd out the investments we ned for our children and jeopardize the promise of a secure retirement for future generations. but we can't ask senior citizens and working families to shoulder the entire burden of deficit reduction while asking nothing more from the wealthiest and the most powerful.
we won't grow the middle class simply by shifting the cost of health care or college on to families that are already struggling, or by forcing communities to lay off more teachers and more cops and more firefighters. most americans, democrats, republicans, and independents understand that we can't just cut our way to prosperity. they know that broad-based economic growth requires a balanced approach to deficit reduction, with spending cuts and revenue, and with everybody doing their fair share. and that's the approach i offer tonight. on medicare, i'm prepared to enact reforms that will achieve the same amount of health care savings by the beginning of the next decade as the reforms proposed by the bipartisan simpson/bowles commission. already, the affordable care act is helping to slow the growth of health care costs.
and the reforms i'm proposing go even further. we'll reduce taxpayer subsidies to prescription drug companies and ask more from the wealthiest seniors. we'll bring down costs by changing the way our government pays for medicare, because our medical bills shouldn't be based on the number of tests ordered or days spent in the hospital. they should be based on the quality of care that our seniors receive. and i am open to additional reforms from both parties so long as they don't violate the guarantee of a secure retirement. our government shouldn't make promises we cannot keep. but we must keep the promises we have already made.
to hit the rest of our deficit reduction target, we should do what leaders in both parties have already suggested and save hundreds of billions of dollars by getting rid of tax loopholes and deductions for the well off and the well connect canned. after all, why would we choose to make deeper cuts to education and medicare just to protect special interest tax breaks? how is that fair? why isn't it deficit reduction is a big emergency justifying making cuts in social security benefits but not closing some loopholes? how does that promote growth? now is our best chance for bipartisan comprehensive tax reform that encourages job creation and helps bring down
the deficit. we can get this done. the american people deserve a tax code that helps small businesses spend less time filling out complicated forms and mr. time expanding and hiring. a tax code that ensures billionaires with high-powered accountants can't work the system and pay a lower rate than their hard-working secretaries. a tax insens sentive that encourages businesses to move jobs overseas and lower taxes for businesses that are creating jobs right here in america. that's what tax reform can deliver. that's what we can do together. [ applause ] i realize that tax reform and
entitlement reform will be not be easy. the politics will be hard for both sides. none of us will get 100% of what we want. but the alternative will cost us jobs. hurt our economy, visit hardship on millions of hardworking americans. so let's set party interests aside and work to pass a budget that replaces reckless cuts with smart savings and wise investments in our future. and let's do it without the brinksmanship that stresses consumers and scares off investors. the greatest nation on earth, the greatest nation on earth cannot keep conducting its business by drifting from one manufacturered crisis to the next. we can't do it. let's agree, let's agree right here, right now to keep the
people's government open and pay our bills on time, and always uphold the full faith and credit of the united states of america. the american people have worked too hard for too long rebuilding from one crisis to see their elected officials cause another. now most of us agree that a plan to reduce the deficit must be part of our agenda. but let's be clear. deficit reduction alone is not an economic plan. a growing economy that creates good middle class jobs, that must be the north star that guides our efforts.
every day we should ask ourselves three questions as a nation. how do we attract more jobs to our shores? how do we equip our people with the skills they need to get those jobs? and how do we make sure that hard work leads to a decent living? a year and a half ago, i put forward an american jobs act that independent economists said would create more than one million new jobs. and i thank the last congress for passing some of that agenda. i urge this congress to pass the rest. but tonight i'll lay out additional proposals that are fully paid for and fully consistent with the budget framework both parties grid to just 18 months ago. let me repeat. nothing i'm proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime. it is not a bigger government we need but a smarter government
that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth. that's what we should be looking for. our first priority is making america a magnet for new jobs in manufacturing. after shedding jobs for more than ten years, our manufacturers have added about 500,000 jobs over the past three. caterpillar is bringing jobs back from japan. ford is bringing jobs back from mexico. and this year apple will start making macs in america again. this are things we can do right now to accelerate this trend. last year we created our first manufacturing innovation institute in youngstown, ohio. a once shuttered warehouse is
now a state-of-the-art lab where new workers are mastering the 3-d printing that has the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything. there is no reason this can't happen in other towns. so tonight i'm announcing the launch of three more of these manufacturie ining hubs where business also partner with the department of defense and energy to turn into global centers of high-tech jobs. and i ask this congress to help create a network of 15 of these hubs and guarantee that the next revolution in manufacturing is made right here in america. we can get that done. now, if we want to make the best products, we also have to invest in the best ideas. every dollar we invested to map
the human genome returned $140 to our economy. every dollar. today our scientists are mapping the human brain to unlock the answers to alzheimer's. they're developing drugs to regenerate damaged organs. devising new materials to make batteries ten times more powerful. now is not the time to gut these job creating investments in science and innovation. now is the time to reach a level of research and development not seen since the height of the space race. we need to make those investments. today no area holds more promise than our investments in american energy. after years of talking about it, we're finally poised to control our own energy future. we produce more oil at home than we have in 15 years.
we have doubled the distance our cars will go on a gallon of gas and the amount of renewable energy we generate from sources like wind and solar. with tens of thousands of good american jobs to show for it. we produce more natural gas than ever before. and nearly everyone's energy bill is lower because of it. and over the last four years, our missions of the dangerous carbon pollution that threatens our planet have actually fallen. but for the sake of our children and our future, we must do more to combat climate change. now it's true that no single event makes a trend. but the fact is the 12 hottest
years on record have all come in the last 15. heatwaves, droughts, wildfires, floods, all are now more frequent and more intense. we can choose to believe that super storm sandy and the most severe drought in decades and the worst wildfire some states have ever seen were all just a freak coincidence, or we can choose to believe in the overwhelming judgment of science and act before it's too late. now, the good news is we can make meaningful progress on this issue while driving strong economic growth. i urge this congress to get together, pursue a bipartisan market-based solution to climate change, like the one john mccain and joe lieberman worked on together a few years ago.
but if congress won't act soon to protect future generations, i will. i will direct -- i will direct my cabinet to come up with executive actions we can take now and in the future to reduce pollution, prepare our communities for the consequences of climate change, and speed the transition to more sustainable sources of energy. four years ago, other countries dominated the clean energy market and the jobs that came with it. and we've begun to change that. last year, wind energy added nearly half of all new power capacity in america. so let's generate even more. solar energy gets cheaper by the year. let's drive down costs even further. as long as countries like china keep going all in on clean energy, so must we. and in the meantime, the natural gas boom has led to cleaner power and greater energy independence. we need to encourage that. and that's why my administration
will keep cutting red tape and speeding up new oil and gas permits. that's got to be part of an all-of-the-above plan. but i also want to work with this congress to encourage the research anding on the that helps natural gas burn even cleaner and protects our air and our water. in fact, much of our newfound energy is drawn from lands and water that we the public own together. so tonight i propose we cruiusee of our oil and gas treasures to fund an energy trust to shift our cars and trucks off oil for good. if a nonpartisan coalition of ceos and retired generals and admirals can get behind this idea, then so can we. let's take their advice and free our families and businesses from the painful spikes in gas prices we have put up with for far too long. i'm also issuing a new goal for america. let's cut in half the energy
wasted by our homes and businesses over the next 20 years. we'll work with the states to do it. those states with the best ideas to create jobs and lower energy bills by constructing more efficient buildings will receive federal support to help make that happen. america's energy sector is just one part of an aging infrastructure badly in need of repair. ask any ceo where they'd rather locate and hire -- a country with deteriorating roads and bridges or one with high speed rail and internet, high-tech schools, self-healing power grids. the ceo of siemans, america said if we upgrade our infrastructure, they'll bring even more jobs. and that's the attitude of a lot of companies all around the world. i know you want these job-creating jobs in your district. i've seen all those ribbon
cuttings. so tonight i propose a fix it first program to put people to work as soon as possible on our most urgent repairs, like the nearly 70,000 structurally deficient bridges across the country. and to make sure taxpayers don't shoulder the whole burden, i'm also proposing a partnership to rebuild america that attracts private capital to upgrade what our businesses need most -- modern ports to move our goods, modern pipelines to withstand a storm, modern schools worthy of our children. let's prove there is no better place to do business than here in the united states of america,
and let's start right away. we can get this done. and part of our rebuilding effort must also involve our housing sector. the good news is our housing market is finally healing from the collapse of 2007. home prices are rising at the fastest pace in six years. home purchases are up nearly 50%. and construction is expanding again. but even with mortgage rates near a 50-year low, too many families with solid credit who want to buy a home are being rejected. too many families who never missed a payment and want to refinance are being told no. that's holding our entire economy back. we need to fix it. right now there is a bill in this congress that would give every responsible homeowner in america the chance to save $3,000 a year by refinancing at today's rates.
democrats and republicans have supported it before. so what are we waiting for? take a vote and send me that bill. why would we be against that? why would is that be a partisan issue, helping folks refinance? right now overlapping regulations keep responsible young families from buying their first home. what is holding us back? let's streamline the process and help our economy grow. these initiatives in manufacturing, energy, infrastructure, housing, all these things will help entrepreneurs and small business owners expand and create new jobs. but none of it will matter unless we also equip our citizens with the skills and training to fill those jobs.
and that has to start at the earliest possible age. you know, study after study shows the sooner a child begins learning, the better he or she does down the road. but today fewer than three in ten 4-year-olds are enrolled in a high quality preschool program. most middle class parents can't afford a few hundred dollars a week for a private preschool. and for poor kids who need help the most, this lack of access can shadow them for the rest of their lives. tonight i propose working with states to make high quality preschool available to every single child in america. that's something we should be able to do.
every dollar we invest in high quality early childhood education can save more than $7 later on by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime. in states that make it a priority to educate our youngest children, like georgia or oklahoma, studies show students grow up more likely to read and do math at grade level, graduate high school, hold a job, form more stable families of their own. we know this works. so let's do what works and make sure none of our children start the race of life already behind. let's give our kids that chance.
let's also make sure that a high school diploma puts our kids on a path to a good job. right now countries like germany focus on graduating their high school students with the equivalent of a technical degree from one of our community colleges. so those german kids, they're ready for a job when they graduate high school. they've been trained for the jobs that are there. now at schools like p-tech in brooklyn, a collaboration between new york public schools and city university of new york and ibm, students will graduate with a high school diploma and an associates degree in computers or engineering. we need to give every american student opportunities like this. and four years ago, four years ago we started race to the top, the competition that convinced almost every state to develop
smarter curricula and higher standards, all for about 1% of what we spend on education each year. tonight i'm announcing a new challenge to redesign america's high schools so they better equip graduates for the demands of a high-tech economy. and we'll reward schools that develop new partnerships with colleges and employers and create classes that focus on science, technology, engineering, and math. the skills today's employers are looking for to fill the jobs that are there right now and will be there in the future. now even with better high schools, most young people will need some higher education. it's a simple fact. the more education you've got, the more likely you are to have a good job and work your way into the middle class. but today's skyrocketing costs price too many young people out of a higher education or saddle them with unsustainable debt. through tax credits, grants, and
better loans, we've made college more affordable for millions of students and families over the last few years. but taxpayers can't keep on subsidizing higher and higher and higher costs for higher education. colleges must do their part to keep costs down. and it's our job to make sure that they do. so tonight i ask congress to change the higher education act so that affordability and value are included in determining which colleges receive certain types of federal aid. and tomorrow my administration will release a new college scorecard that parents and students can use to compare schools based on a simple criteria, where you can get the most bang for your educational buck. now, to grow our middle class, our citizens have to have access
to the education and training that today's jobs require. but we also have to make sure that america remains a place where everyone who is willing to work, everybody who is willing to work hard has the chance to get ahead. our economy is stronger when we harness the talents and ingenuity of striving, hopeful immigrants. and right now leaders from the business, labor, law enforcement, faith communities, they all agree that the time has come to pass comprehensive immigration reform. now is the time to do it. now is the time to get it done. now is the time to get it done. real reform means stronger border security, and we can
build on the progress my administration has already made, putting more boots on the southern border than at any time in our history and reducing illegal crossings to their lowest levels in 40 years. real reform means establishing a responsible pathway to earned citizenship, a path that includes passing a background check, paying taxes and a meaningful penalty, learning english, and going to the become of the line behind the folks trying to come here legally. and real reform means fixing the legal immigration system to cut waiting periods and attract the highly skilled entrepreneurs and engineers that will help create jobs and grow our economy. [ applause ] in other words, we know what
needs to be done. and as we speak, bipartisan groups in both chambers are working diligently to draft a bill, and i applaud their efforts. so let's get this done. send me a comprehensive immigration reform bill in the next few months and i will sign it right away, and america will be better for it. let's get it done. let's get it done. but we can't stop there. we know our economy is stronger when our wives, our mothers, our daughters can live their lives free from discrimination in the workplace and free from the fear of domestic violence. today the senate passed the violence against women's act that joe biden originally wrote almost 20 years ago, and i now urge the house to do the same. good job, joe.
and i ask this and i ask this congress to declare that women should earn a living equal to their efforts, and finally pass the paycheck fairness act this year. we know our economy is stronger when we reward an honest day's work with honest wages. but today, a full-time worker making the minimum wage earning $14,500 a year. even with the tax relief we put in place. a family with two kids that earning the minimum wage still lives below the poverty line. that is wrong.
that is why i sense the last time this congress raised the minimum wage, 19 states have chosen to bump theirs own higher. tonight, let's declare that in the wealthiest nation on earth no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty. and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour. we should be able to get that done. this single step would raise the incomes of millions of working families. it could mean the difference between groceries or the food bank. rent or eviction. scraping by or finally getting ahead. for businesses across the country it would mean customers would have more money in their pockets, and a whole lot of folks out there would probably need less help from government. in fact, working folks shouldn't have to wait year after year for
the minimum wage to go up while ceo pay has never been higher. so here is an idea that governor romney and i actually agreed on last year. let's tie the minimum wage to the cost of living so that it finally becomes a wage you can live on. tonight, let's also recognize there are communities in this country where no matter how hard you work it is virtually impossible to get ahead. factories, towns, decimated from years of plants packing up. inescapable plants of poverty, where young adults are still fighting for the first job. america is not a place where circumstances of birth should decide our destiny. that is why we should build the ladders of opportunities for all
who are willing to climb them. let's offer the incentive for americas who have what it takes to fill that job but who have been out of work for so long, nobody will give them a chance. let's give people the chance to work and rebuild rundown neighborhoods. and my administration will partner with the 20 hardest hit towns in america to get the towns back on their feet. we'll work with local leaders to target safety and public education and housing. we'll give new tax credits to businesses that hire and invest. and we'll work to strengthen families by removing the financial deterrence to marriage for low-income couples, and do more to encourage fatherhood. because what makes you a man is not the ability to conceive a child, it is the ability to raise one. and we want to encourage that. we want to help that.
stronger families. stronger communities. the stronger america. it is this kind of prosperity, broad, shared, built on a thriving middle class that has always been the source of our progress at home. it's also the foundation of our power and influence throughout the world. tonight, we stand united in saluting the troops and civilians who stand united every day to protect us. because of them we can say with confidence that america will complete its mission in afghanistan and achieve our objective of defeating the core of al-qaeda.
already we have brought home 33,000 of our brave service men and women. tonight, i can announce that over the next year another 34,000 american troops will come home from afghanistan this draw down will continue, and by the end of next year our war in afghanistan will be over. beyond 2014, america's commitment to a unified and sovereign afghanistan will endure. but the nation of our commitment will change, we're negotiating an agreement with the
afghanistan government that focuses on two admissions. training and equipping afghan forces so that the training doesn't slip into chaos. and counter terrorism activities that allow us to pursue the al-qaeda and their affiliates. today, the organization that attacked us on 9/11 is a shadow of its former self. it is true, different al-qaeda affiliates and extremist groups have emerged from the arabian peninsula to africa. the threat these groups pose is evolving. but to meet this threat we don't need to send tens of thousands of our sons and daughters abroad or occupy other nations. instead, we need to help countries like yemen, libya and somali to provide for their own security and help the allies who take the fight to terrorists, as we have in mali, and where
necessary to arrange the capabilities. we'll continue to take direct action against the terrorists who pose the gravest threat to americans. now, as we do, we must enlist our values in the fight. that is why my administration has worked tirelessly to forge a durable legal and policy framework to guide our counter terrorism efforts, throughout, we have kept congress fully informed of our efforts. and i recognize that in our democracy nobody should just take my word for it that we're doing things the right way. so in the months ahead i will continue to engage congress to ensure not only that our targeting, detention and prosecution of terrorists remains consistent with our laws and system of checks and balances, but that our efforts are even more transparent to the
american people and to the world. of course, our challenges don't end with al-qaeda. america will continue to lead the effort to prevent the spread of the world's most dangerous weapons. the regime in north korea must know they will only achieve security and prosperity by meeting their international obligations. provocations of the sort we saw last night will only further isolate them as we stand by our allies, strengthen our own missile defense and lead the world in taking firm action in response to these threats. likewise, the leaders of iran must recognize that now is the time for a diplomatic solution because a coalition stands unite understand the obligation that they meet theirs, they will do whatever is necessary to prevent them from getting a nuclear weapon.
at the same time, we'll engage russia to seek further reductions in our nuclear arsenals, and continue leading the global effort to security nuclear materials that could fall into the wrong hands. because our ability to influence others depends on our willingness to meet our obligations. america must also face the rapidly growing threat from cyber attacks. now, we know hackers steal people's identities and infiltrate private e-mails. we know foreign companies swipe our corporate secrets. now our enemies are seeking the ability to sabotage our power grids, our financial institutions, our air traffic control systems.
we can't look back years from now and wonder why we didn't stop the real threats to our security and economy. that is why today i signed a new executive order that will strengthen our cyber executive orders to develop standards to protect our national security, our jobs and privacy. but now congress must act as well. by passing the legislation to give our government a greater capacity to secure our networks, and deter attacks. this is something we should be able to get done on a bipartisan basis. now, even as we protect our people we should remember that today's world presents not just dangers and threats, it presents opportunities. to boost american exports.
to work with american jobs, and in the growing markets of asia we intend to complete negotiations on a trans-pacific partnership. and tonight i announce we'll look at talks on a trans-atlantic trade agreement with a european union, because trade that is free and fair across the atlantic supports millions of good-paying american jobs. we also don't know the progress in the most poverty-ridden parts of the world, we create new markets, more stable order in certain regions in the world, but also because it is the right thing to do. you know, in many places people live on more than a dollar a day. so the united states will join with our allies to eradicate such extreme poverty in the next 20 years by connecting more
people to the global economy. by empowering women and giving our young and brightest minds the opportunity to serve. and helping communities to feed, empower and educate themselves. by saving the world's children from preventible deaths. and by realizing the promise of an aids-free generation, which is within our reach. you see, you see america must remain a beacon to all who seek freedom during this period of historic change. i saw the power of hope last year in rangoon, in burma, when soo-chi we canned an american into her home, when thousands, waving american flags, said there is justice and law in the
united states. i want our country to be like that. in defense of freedom, we'll remain the anchor of strong alliances from the americas to africa. from europe to asia. in the middle east we will stand with citizens as they demand their universal rights and support stable transitions to democracy. we know the process will be messy. and we cannot presume to dictate the course of change in countries like egypt. but we can and will insist on respect for the fundamental rights of all people. we'll keep the pressure on a syrian regime that has murdered its own people. and support opposition leaders that respect the rights of every syrian. and we will stand steadfast with israel in pursuit of security and a lasting peace.
these are the messages that i will deliver when i travel to the middle east next month. in all this work, it depends on the courage and sacrifice of those who serve in dangerous places at great personal risk. our diplomats, our intelligence officers, and the men and women of the united states armed forces. as long as i'm commander-in-chief we will do whatever we must to protect those who serve their country abroad, and we will maintain the best military the world has ever known.
we'll invest in new capabilities, even as we reduce waste and more time spending. we will ensure equal treatment for all service members and equal benefits for their families, gay and straight. we will draw upon the courage of our sisters, women, moms, daughters, women have proven they are ready for combat. we will keep faith with our veterans, including help for health care, for our wounded warriors. supporting our military
families, giving our veterans the benefits and education and job opportunities that they have earned. and i want to thank my wife, michelle, and dr. jill biden, for their dedication in serving the military families, thank you. thank you, jill. defending our freedom, though, is not just the job of our military alone. we must all do our part to make sure our god-given rights are protected here at home. that includes one of the most fundamental rights of a democracy. the right to vote.
when any american, no matter where they live or what their party are denied that right, because they can't afford to wait for five or six or seven hours just to cast their ballot, we are betraying our ideals. so so tonight i'm announcing a nonpartisan commission to improve the voting experience in america. and it definitely needs improvement. i'm asking two long-time experts in the field, who, by the way recently served as the top attorneys for my campaign and for governor romney's campaign, to lead it. we can fix this and we will. the american people demand it and so does our democracy.
of course, what i have said tonight matters little if we don't come together to protect our most precious resource. our children. it has been two months since newtown. i know this is not the first time this country has debated how to reduce gun violence. but this time is different. overwhelming majorities of americans, americans who believe in the second amendment have come together around common sense reform. like background checks that will make it harder for criminals to get their hands on a gun. senators.
senators, senators of both parties are working together on tough new laws to prevent anyone from buying guns for resale to criminals. police chiefs are asking our help to get weapons of war and massive ammunition magazines off our streets because these police chiefs, they're tired of seeing their guys and gals being out-gunned. each of those proposals deserves a vote in congress. now, if you want to vote no, that is your choice. but these proposals deserve a vote. because in the two months since newtown, more than a thousand birthdays, graduations, anniversaries, have been stolen
from our lives by a bullet from a gun. more than a thousand. one of those we lost was a young girl named hadiya pendleton. she was 15 years old. she loved fig newtons and lip gloss. she was a majorette. she was so good to her friends they all thought they were her best friend. just three weeks ago, she was here in washington with her classmates. performing for her country at my inauguration. and a week later she was shot and killed in a chicago park after school. just a mile away from my house. hadiya's parents, nate and cleo, are in this chamber tonight, along with more than 2 dozen
americans whose lives were turned around by gun violence. they deserve a vote. they deserve a vote. they deserve a vote. gabrielle giffords deserves vote. the families of newtown deserve a vote. the families of aurora deserve a vote. the families of oak creek and tucson and blacksburg and the countless other communities ripped open by gun violence, they deserve a simple vote.
they deserve -- they deserve a simple vote. our actions will not prevent every senseless act of violence in this country. in fact, no laws, no initiatives, no administrative acts will perfectly solve all the challenges i have outlined tonight. but we were never sent here to be perfect. we were sent here to make what difference we can. to secure this nation, expand opportunity. uphold our ideals through the hard, often frustrating but absolutely necessary work of self-government. we were sent here to look out for our fellow americans. the same way they look out for one another. every single day. usually without fan fare, all across this country.
we should follow their example. we should follow the example of a new york city nurse named menchu sanchez, when hurricane sandy plunged her hospital into darkness she was not thinking about how her own home was faring. her mind was on the 20 precious newborns in her care and the rescue plans she devised that kept them all safe. we should follow the example of the north miami woman named desoline victor. when she arrived at her polling place, she was told it could be six hours before she voted. her concern was whether folks like her would get to have their say. hour after hour, a throng of people stayed in line to support her. because desoline was 102 years
old, and they erupted in cheers when she finally put on a sticker that said, "i voted." it was desoline. we should follow the example of a police officer named brian murphy, when a gunman opened fire on a sikh temple in wisconsin. brian was the first to arrive, and he did not consider his own safety. he fought back. until help arrived. and ordered his fellow officers to protect the safety of the fellow americans worshipping
inside. even as he lay bleeding from 12 bullet wounds. and when asked how he did that, brian said, "that is just the way we're made." that is just the way we're made. we may do different jobs, and wear different uniforms, and hold different views than the person beside us. as americans we all share the same proud type. we are citizens. it is a word that doesn't just describe our nationality or legal status. it describes the way we're made. it describes what we believe. it captures the enduring idea that this country works when we accept ideas from one another, that our rights are wrapped up
in the rights of others. and that well into our third century as a nation it remains the task of us all. as citizens of these united states to be the authors of the next great chapter of our american story. thank you. god bless you, and god bless these united states of america. [ applause ] >> president barack obama delivering the first state-of-the-union address of his second term as the president describing the state of our union as stronger. at its start of bread and butter, one foot to another, the jobs, manufacturing, education, middle class economic growth agenda, tax reform, immigration reform. the long defense of the affordable care act, things like
shouting out red states of georgia and oklahoma, as models for having universal pre-school for kids, saying we should have that for the nation as a whole. making news tonight in his call to raise the federal minimum wage to nine dollars an hour, from the economic heart of the speech. from that two thirds, the opening part of the speech the president moved on the rights issues, and then into some more emotional territory, talking about voting rights, saying he wanted a nonpartisan commission on the voting experience in america that he said should be headed by the top lawyer from his presidential campaign, that would be bob bower, and the top lawyer from the mitt romney for president, republican presidential candidate. the president calling the most emotional part of his speech, calling for gun violence measures, for example, background checks, to get a vote. president saying if you want to vote no, that is your choice,
but they deserve a vote. and then transitioning so that "they" in his rhetoric were the members of the audience tonight, who themselves were victims of gun violence, including former congresswoman gabrielle giffords of arizona, telling the story tonight of 102 north miami woman who waited for hours for the right to vote. telling the story tonight of the first-on-the-scene police officer, in oak creek, who was shot more than ten times and who survived, and was here tonight. chris matthews is here with me tonight, along with lawrence o'donnell, chuck todd, and ed schultz in washington tonight. what was your reaction? >> you know, i like what he said about voting fix, fix the voting system, what he said did they deserve a vote, rebuild america, the assault he did on sequestration, the applause for science, that is pretty basic
stuff. afghanistan, good news there. i don't know if he closed any deal on immigration tonight. that will be his biggest issue this year. he didn't talk about enforcement, teeth, what he needs to make the law work. the problem with immigration, we have had illegal immigration all these years, nothing in his speech to support that. >> he talked about border security. >> i never believed in border security. it is about worker permits, id cards, some way of stopping illegal hiring, he never even mentioned it. it is the reason people came here, he never mentioned it. i don't think we'll get a deal until we deal with illegal hiring. >> the president is a president who is presiding over net, negative illegal immigration because the economy has been so soft we have not been attracting people. >> having recessions on a regular basis is not a solution to immigration. i don't think he made an offer to the republicans on immigration. he said how we'll benefit, politically how the democrats
will. i tell you, i want the thing fixed, not just talked about. i want the issue fixed. >> seeing republicans talk about when he talked about immigration reform, my response to that was he talked about it in a way they don't feel like aliens by it. >> they're on television. >> they're on television, there were other parts of the speech i thought they should have applauded. i think today the president tried to move beyond the politics of the moment and really kind of trying to define a second agenda, built around restoring the prosperity to the middle class. really focused on the middle class, and even talking about elevating the poor from poverty into the middle class. which is something i have always argued, republicans, right up our alley in terms of economic views and points. i thought the president did it, and did it very smartly. the one thing i will say about the speech, it started off strong.
and he was taking his chance. but then in the middle, towards the end, kind of -- the energy flowed out of it. it slowed. i don't know if he got tired or what the deal was there. i thought that particularly in talking about -- the gun issue and the immigration issue, it was a little bit soft for me. i thought that he would be a little bit bigger in where he wanted to go. >> i thought the gun stuff was so emotional. >> that is what it was -- >> deserves a vote. deserves a vote. it is heavy, though. >> who is he talking to -- >> i think he is saying -- presumably, he is saying don't filibuster -- >> he doesn't want it on assault weapons -- he wants it on everything else. he is also speaking to john boehner saying you ought to vote on this stuff in the house. let your side vote. >> i think they would like to vote against it. we'll see. >> al sharpton. >> i think it was very important they challenged on the vote, the whole question of guns.
and to use the fact that the victims were there, from hadiya pendleton's parents to newtown victims, to gabrielle giffords. i didn't see him losing energy at all. i think that he was really making an emotional appeal. i think that when he introduced this lady, the 102-year-old lady, in this, the anniversary of the voter rights act, wherein some of our lifetime, my mother couldn't vote in her hometown until she was 39 years old. there was a gasp. i mean, there was a woman who stood at 102 years old. when she finally put on her lapel -- this doesn't sound like america, this sounds like 1934 south africa. and i thought it was very compelling. but the meat of it, the economy,
talking about lifting poor children and pre-school -- and talking about how we got to bring poor people up. raise the minimum wage. i want to hear more about the simpson-bowles product, what does he mean -- >> willing to agree on equivalent changes -- >> i thought it was a very aggressive speech. i thought it was challenging. and, all you have to do is watch john boehner to know how challenging it was. he didn't stand up one time. he clapped a few times. so i felt that any time john boehner was not cheering that it was probably an aggressive speech. >> lawrence o'donnell, what do you think is the most important thing about this speech? >> the important thing, elliott engel just got the president's autograph on his copy of the speech. which is why we have the state of the union -- there is a small piece of history being made here
as the president walks out. and this is the first time the president will be leaving a state of the union where there are two black senators in that room in the hall. and mo cowan, the new massachusetts senator has been trying to get himself into a position to shake hands with the president. i'm not sure if he got that or not. but to have those two black senators there on the same night, the same night we had that 102-year-old woman who had such a struggle to vote in this country. i think the message about gabrielle giffords deserves a vote. the families of newtown deserves a vote. was really extraordinary. and the founding fathers would not understand what this president was talking about. it would have been inconceivably to them -- that they could not get a vote in these legislatures that they designed. and i just wish he had turned to
john boehner and asked him openly in front of the country why wouldn't there be a vote? let him have the microphone. >> on guns -- >> let him have the microphone. >> you have a theory, why wouldn't we get a vote on guns on background checks, will we not get a vote in the house? >> i think you will. >> john boehner -- doesn't -- i don't think john boehner wants to put his members in the position of having to vote no on something that 92% of the country likes. and i do think he feels that a lot will feel constrained to vote now. in a gerrymandering district -- >> there is room for the party to move this issue forward within the republican caucus.
and i think that john boehner realizes there will be a part of his caucus that will not under any substance go with that. he is trying to cobble together with the democrats in the house so that the house can deliver on the vote -- >> it is interesting tonight, i believe there were 31 members of congress who brought along with them. they have one ticket to sit in the gallery, 31 members of congress brought somebody affected by gun violence, effectively packing the gallery with this issue. zero republicans. >> and these people deserve a vote. and i also want to respectfully say to my colleagues here -- >> they deserve much more than a vote. but what our politics has come to is that we beg for a vote just to vote. >> no, we should have a vote, and then we ought to pass the legislation. what i want to say to my
colleague lawrence, it is in stark contrast, the two black senators were appointed. >> than to get elected -- >> both of them were appointed. and to have two appointed senators is better than having none, but it is not as good as having two elected. >> as long as the senate has two candidates who have run for the united states senate -- >> reverend sharpton and michael steele. >> and that is why we're on the panel. >> and rachel -- i want to back up something that you said, reverend sharpton. you talked about the voting situation. that woman -- i'll always remember. to have to wait in line when you're that age or any age, you mentioned south africa, i was there the day they voted. i was walking around, nobody waited more than four hours. nobody waited more than four hours. >> no one waited four hours, and this was the first election they had. to think in florida and ohio, in
places that have been voted -- how many years of voting and we have not perfected the vote in those areas and then we're cutting back on early voting days, it is amazing. >> we just started in 1788, haven't perfected it yet. >> i think that is a very important point. i don't want to gloss over in the comment, in saying that part of the speech was slower for me, just in terms of energy or whatever. but the substance of it is real, i think. and the party, quite honestly, rnc is going out doing its listening tour, and trying to meet with groups of african-americans in the country. the chairman of the party has got to stand up and address that question and say, do you or do you not support these efforts by, in some cases, republican-rolled legislatures, or some states, republican governors, the black community feels they're being
disenfranchised. >> you know how they addressed it -- >> but how do you go forward -- >> do they change the branding -- >> since the election, they have not, virginia is working to make it harder to vote still. indiana, they just dealt with the proposal to say that patently unconstitutional proposal to say if you're a student in indiana you have to have a legal resident of the state there to vote there. which is totally -- republicans have not changed in the states on the issue of making it harder to vote since the election. the rhetoric in washington has changed but in the states it has not changed. we're about 30 seconds away from marco rubio who is giving the official republican response to the state-of-the-union address. it is probably no coincidence that the first ever time we had an official response to the state of the union from a party out of hour, in 1966, first time it was televised in prime time speech. the losing parties don't necessarily want to give the
party that time on their own. marco rubio will rebut. >> i am marco rubio. let me begin by congratulating president obama on the start of his second term. tonight, i have the honor of responding to the state-of-the-union address on behalf of my fellow republicans. and i'm especially honored to be addressing our brave men and women serving in the armed forces. you may be thousands of miles away, you are always in our prayers. for much of human history, most people were trapped in stagnant societies where a tiny minority always stayed on top and nobody else even had a chance. but america is exceptional, because we believe that every life at every stage is precious. and that every one everywhere has a god-given right to go as far as their talents and hard work will take them. like most americans for me, this ideal is personal.
my parents emigrated here for an opportunity to improve their lives and give their children a chance for an even better one. my dad worked as a bartender and my mother as a cashier and a maid. i didn't inherent money from them, but something far better. the real opportunity to accomplish my dreams. this opportunity to make it to the middle class or beyond, from where you started out in life, it is not given to us from washington. it comes from a free economy where people can risk their own money to open a business. and when they succeed, they hire more people, who in turn invest, helping others to start a business and create jobs. presidents in both parties, from john f. kennedy to ronald reagan, know that the source of our middle class is prosperity. but president obama believes it is the cause of our problems. that the economic downturn happened because the government didn't tax enough, spend enough
or control enough. and therefore, as you heard tonight, his solution to virtually every problem we face is for washington to tax more, borrow more and spend more. this idea that our problems were caused by a government that was too small is just not true. in fact, a major cause of our recent downturn was a housing crisis created by reckless government policies. and the idea that more taxes and more government spending is the best way to help hard-working middle class taxpayers, that is an old idea that has failed every time it has been tried. more government is not going to help you get ahead. it is going to hold you back. more government is not going to create more opportunities. it is going to limit them. and more government is not going to inspire new ideas, new businesses and new private sector jobs. it is going to create uncertainty. because more government breeds complicated rules and laws that small businesses can't afford to follow, because more government raises taxes on employers who then pass the costs on to their
employees through fewer hours, lower pay and even layoffs. and because many government programs that claim to help the middle class often end up hurting them. for example, obama care, it was supposed to help middle class americans afford health insurance. but now some people are losing the health insurance they were happy with. and because obama care created expensive requirements for companies with more than 50 employees, now many of these companies are not hiring. not only that, they're being forced to lay people off and switching from full-time employees to part-time workers. now, does this mean there is no role for government? of course not. it plays a crucial part in keeping us safe and providing some securities against the risks of modern life. but government's role is wisely limited by the constitution and can't play the essential role when it ignores those limits. there are valid reasons to be concerned about the president's plan to grow our government.
but any time anyone opposes the president's agenda, he and his allies respond by falsely attacking their motives. when we point out that our government can't control the weather, he accuses us of wanting dirty water and air, he accuses us of wanting to leave the elderly and disabled to fend for themselves. and tonight, he even criticized us for refusing to raise taxes to delay military cuts, cuts that were his idea in the first place. but his favorite attack -- his favorite attack, i still live in the same working class neighborhood i grew up in. my neighbors are not millionaires. they' retirees, and workers who have to get up to pay the bills,
they're immigrants, who came here because they were stuck in poverty and the government that dominated the economy. the taxes and proposals will hurt middle class families, costing them raises and benefits. it may even cost some of them their jobs. it will hurt seniors, because it does nothing to save social security and medicare. mr. president, i don't oppose your plans because i want to protect the rich, i oppose the plans because i want to protect the neighbors, hard-working middle class neighbors who don't need us to come up with a plan to grow the government. they need a plan to grow the middle class. economic growth is the best way to help the middle class. unfortunately, our economy actually shrank during the last two months of 2012. but if we can get the economy to grow just 4% a year, it would create middle class jobs and reduce our deficits by almost $4 trillion over the next decade. tax increases can't do this.
raising taxes won't create private sector jobs. and there is no realistic tax increase that could lower our deficits by almost $4 trillion. that is why i hope the president will abandon his obsession of raising taxes and instead work with us to achieve real growth in our economy. one of the best ways to encourage growth is through our energy industry. of course, solar and wind energy should be a part of our portfolio. but god also blessed america with abundant coal, oil, and natural gas. instead of wasting more taxpayer money on companies like solyndra, let's option more federal lands for safe and responsible exploration. and let's reform our energy regulations so that they're reasonable and based on common sense. if we can grow our energy industry it will make us energy independent, and create middle class jobs and bring manufacturing back from places like china. making our tax code simple will help the middle class because it
will help small business to hire and grow. we agree with the president, we should lower our corporate tax rate, so they will bring money and jobs back from overseas. we can also grow our economy if we have a legal immigration system that allows us to attract and a simulate the world's best and brightest. we need a permanent solution to the problems for those who are here illegally. but first, we must promise to help the broken promise of the past, to secure our borders and enforce our laws. helping the middle class, to give them the skills and the knowledge that tomorrow's world will require. we need to give incentive to local school districts to offer more advance placement courses and more career training. and we need to give all parents, especially the parents of children with special needs the opportunity to send the children to the school of their choice. and because college tuition
costs have grown so fast, we need to change the way we pay for higher education. now, i believe in federal financial aid. i couldn't have gone to college without it. but it is not just about spending more money. it is also about strengthening and modernizing them. the 21st century work force should not be forced to accept 20th century education solutions. today's students are not only 18-year-olds, they're returning veterans, single parents who decide to get the education they need to earn a decent wage. and the earners lost jobs that are never coming back. we need student aid that doesn't discriminate, like on-line courses or degree programs that give you credit for work experience. when i finished school, i owed over $100,000 in student loans. a debt i paid off just a few months ago. today, many face massive student loans. we must give students more help
on the cost and benefits of loans they're taking out. all of these measures are key to a growing economy but we wouldn't be able to sustain a vibrant middle class unless we solve our debt problem. every dollar the government borrows is not money to create jobs, many businesses are not hiring. the president loves to blame the debt on president bush, but president obama has created more debt in four years than his predecessor did in eight. the real cost of our debt is that the government is spending one trillion more than it takes in every year. that is why we need a balanced budget amendment. the big obstacle for balancing the budget is programs that are already locked in. one program is medicare, especially important to me. it provided my father the care he needed to battle cancer and ultimately to die with dignity and pays for the care my mother receives right now. i would never support any
changes to medicare that would hurt seniors like my mother. but anyone who is in favor of leaving medicare exactly the way it is right now is in favor of bankrupting it. republicans have offered a detailed and credible plan that helped save medicare without hurting today's retirees. instead of playing politics with medicare when is the president going to offer his detailed plan to save it? tonight would have been a good time to do it. of course, we face other challenges, as well. we were all heartbroken by the recent tragedy in connecticut. we must effectively deal with the rise of violence in our country. on foreign policy, america continues to be first in property and safe guarding human rights. the world is a better place when america is the strongest nation on earth. we can't remain powerful if we
don't have a economy that can afford it. in the short time i've been in washington, nothing has been more difficult than the choices. the choice is not just between big government or business. what we need is accountable and efficient and effective government that allows small and new businesses to create more middle class jobs. we don't have to raise taxes to avoid the president's devastating cuts to our military. republicans passed a plan that replaced these cuts with responsible spending reforms. in order to balance our budget the choice doesn't have to be higher taxes or dramatic benefit cuts for those in need, instead we should grow our economy so we can create new taxpayers, not new taxes. so our government can afford to help others who truly cannot help themselves. and the truth is every problem can't be solved by the government. many are caused by the moral breakdown in our society. and the answer to these challenges lie primarily in our families, and our faiths. not our politicians.
despite our differences, i know that both republicans and democrats love america. i pray we can come together and solve our problems. because the choices before us could not be more important. if we can get our economy healthy again, our children will be the most prosperous americans ever. and if we do not, we will forever be known as the generation responsible for america's decline. at a time when one showdown after another ends in short-term deals that do nothing about our real problems, some are starting to believe that the government can't or won't make the right choices anymore. but our strength has never come from the capitol, but from the people. the people who if they have an idea, if you have a dream and are willing to work hard nothing should be impossible. americans have always celebrated and been inspired by those who succeed. but it is the dreams of those still trying to make it that sets our nation apart.
tonight, all across this land, parents will hold their newborn children in their arms for the first time. many of these parents, for many of these parents life has not gone the way they planned. maybe they were born into circumstances they found didn't to escape. maybe they have made mistakes along the way. maybe they're young mothers all alone, the father of their young child long gone. but tonight when they look into the eyes of their child for the first time, their lives will change forever. because in those eyes, they will see what my parents saw in me. and what your parents saw in you. they will see all the hopes and dreams they once had for themselves. this dream of a better life for their children, it is the hope of parents everywhere. politicians here and throughout the world have lg promised that more government can make those dreams come true. but we americans know better. from our earliest days we
embraced economic liberty. and because we did, america remains one of the few places on earth where dreams like these even have a chance. each time our nation has faced great challenges what has kept us together was our shared hope for a better life. now, let that hope bring us together again. to solve the challenges of our time, and write the next chapter in the amazing story of the greatest nation man has ever known. thank you for listening. may god bless all of you, may god bless our president and may god continue to bless the united states of america. >> republican senator marco rubio of florida, being given the honor tonight of giving his party's response to the president's state-of-the-union address. honestly, mr. rubio's speech will be remembered in part for the odd punctuation of the big reach for the water glass -- in the middle of it. that was just an odd bit of
staging in what was otherwise set up visually as a nice speech. i will say in tone, mr. rubio proclaiming himself frustrated. kind of an edgy speech, hard-edged, laced throughout with criticism of the president. much more of a speech about the president than a speech about the country. he said that the president believes that the free enterprise economy is the cause of our problems as a nation. he accused the nation of attacking republicans' motives. he accuses us, criticizes us. his favorite attack, he said i hope the president will abandon his obsession with raising taxes. the president loves to blame. when is the president going to offer his plan? tonight would have been a good time to do it. nothing has frustrated me more than false choices like the ones that the president laid out tonight. i didn't expect that from marco rubio. i thought he would give his
reaganesque speech. >> i thought it was primitive, something you would hear on a high school debating team. first of all, he went after it as evil. he admitted he went to school on student loans, i did. my dad went to school on the gi bill. i got in the peace corp, i'm very pro-government. he loves medicare, he said, how it took care of my mother, father with dignity. i went to school with student loans, benefitted from it, got in education. where is the consistency here? he trashed the whole thing and played the victim game that everybody seems to play. the republicans, victims, paying one in six dollars, we have 15% of gdp going to revenues. spending 25%, who is being over-taxed? what are they talking about. it was almost like a young
americans for freedom speech. 1950s. it was not original, tinker-toys. the philosophy, reduced to the ninth grade level, that is what it was. >> michael steele, i saw you visibly dismayed by the staging -- >> did not like the water bottle. just suck it up and just go with it. and work through it. because he was -- you know, i appreciate chris's point. but i thought he was delivering a very strong speech. it was an establishment speech to your point, rachel, which bothered me. because i think marco has a way of framing those kind of edgy arguments in a big way that you don't feel threatened by them but you want to see where they lead to. i thought one thing was missing. one thing, the counter point, the president in his speech
noted, our generation's task was not to reignite the economic growth, the rising, thriving middle class, the opportunity to make it to beyond the middle class. no matter where you started out in life, was not from washington, it is setting up the paradigm, can government help? >> can government help? >> ed schultz is in washington, with the house democratic leader, nancy pelosi, take it away, ed. >> a stunning speech, accepted very well by democrats here on the hill. congresswoman nancy pelosi, leader of the house, the democrats, what is your impression? >> it was a powerful speech, music to my ears and i hope the american people. the president talked about restoring confidence in the economy, with job creation,
restoring confidence in our safety, with gun violence prevention. restoring confidence in who we are as a people with the immigration bill. send me the bill and i will sign it. restoring confidence in again, everything that we are in our democracy, we as citizens, we began with john f. kennedy, our responsibility as elected, all are citizens with responsibility to our country. >> do you think tonight's speech, it was a lot of philosophy, there are a lot of what he believes in coming out tonight? >> i believe it was, i know it was. the president had a central the theme, which was that we have to have success for people. it is about survival, success, transformation of how they think about their prospects. so when he talked about jobs, whether it was building the
infrastructure, addressing climate change, keeping our safety, public safety intact, all of those things were all about jobs and what they meant, not only to education and safety but to the well-being of people. and that is who he is. >> congresswoman, the two issues that are most divisive right now on capitol hill, and that is immigration reform and also firearms rights. they got the response, the president said give us, this is the time for america that it may chang change. >> the guns are a bigger challenge, there is something we may do. the window of opportunity is not a wide climb. but certainly, what he talked about in terms of the background
checks that really work, and why is it that people can out-gun the police? i mean, he asked some very serious questions tonight. so i believe that to the extent that the president takes this to the american people, we know what they believe, and what they think. that has to translate into action in the congress. he cannot look these people in the eye, again, if we cannot have the courage to make the vote. >> there was a crescendo in the speech, that he outlined so many things in the speech, regarding gun violence, a very emotional moment in the chamber. will john boehner bring this up for a vote? >> he has indicated, as he usually does, we'll see what the senate does and we'll take it up from there. but i think they're reading a stale attitude in the public and in the congress. many of us had on the green
ribbon, scores of us were in the chamber who personally lost a brother, a sister, a child, a wife, to gun violence. some from newtown. and they are demanding answers. >> and finally, congresswoman, the congress -- the house is going home for a number of days when we're facing sequestration coming up on march 1st. it doesn't make sense to americans. >> it doesn't make sense, i wrote to the speaker and said we have this budget deadline that is coming up. if we go into sequestration, it will be harmful to job growth, and creation, and harmful to military readiness, and we are going home for ten days -- >> will there be a deal? >> i don't know, i certainly hope so. we have made overtures to say we're ready to cooperate and cut spending. we believe that has to be a revenue. and all of it should be how we
create growth to bring revenue in. it shouldn't be hard to do, outside, business communities, democrats and republicans alike understand we have to get this done. the problem is inside, and hopefully we can change that. >> congresswoman nancy pelosi, thanks for your time tonight. thank you so much. rachel, there is a tremendous amount of confidence among the democrats tonight that the president hit on the very notes he talked about during the campaign and emphasized all the notes that he campaigned on. but going into the speech tonight, i think there was a great deal of apprehension, because leon panetta has not laid out a plan at all to anybody on the house armed services committee on what exactly is going to get cut, how it gets cut, and how it will move forward. there are very nervous people on the hill tonight regarding that issue. >> the president talking on that tonight, the cuts need to not happen. but the republicans have not laid out anything that looks like a path to avoiding the
sequester cuts at least any time soon. ed, thank you very much. we'll check back in with you. we'll talk to senator chuck schumer in just a moment about one of the policy items that was not leaked in advance of this speech. and that nobody knew, as far as i know, was coming before this speech was actually delivered tonight, which was the very specific proposal that the federal minimum wage should be raised. that was not something that was a subject of the campaign between president obama and mitt romney, except to the extent that as the president noted tonight, both he and mitt romney agreed that the minimum wage should be indexed to the cost of living. the president noting that several other states have already taken action at the state level to advance that. the president has already laid out a very crowded legislative agenda for his second term putting gun reform and immigration reform at the top of a list. where does the prospect of a
raised federal minimum wage fit into what he was planning for the second term? is it a realistic prospect? a long-term goal or something he can work on right away? do we have chuck schumer from washington? stand by for chuck schumer momentarily. senator schumer, part of the reason we wanted to talk to him after the speech is because he had such a key role in setting the legislative agenda in terms on the democratic side. senator schumer as part of his role in the leadership has been setting the agenda for the democrats -- >> i'm ready, i can hear you. >> i can hear you, too, this is rachel maddow, thank you for joining us, sir. you with me? >> i am. >> very good. >> hello, hi, rachel. >> hi, senator schumer. excellent. well, we got the cans and the string going, everything is awesome. i want to ask you specifically about the president's proposal
to raise the federal minimum wage, how does this fit into his overall federal priorities? and is this something that the senate may actually work toward in the short-term or is this more of a long-term goal? >> no, i think there is a lot of support in the senate for raising the minimum wage and we may even get some of our republican colleagues to go along. it is long overdue, the president outlined it very well. he let people know if you're working 40 hours a week you shouldn't be in poverty. and that is something every american, rich, poor, northeast, southwest or democrat or republican can agree on. >> on the issue of voting rights, what the president described tonight as the american voting experience you talked about having a bipartisan position headed up -- a commission headed up by the top lawyer from his campaign and the top lawyer from the romney campaign to work on reducing the long lines to vote that don't plague us everywhere in the country but that do over and over plague us in some places. do you think there is actually
bipartisan support for that, or is that only a democratic priority? >> yeah, i worry that some of our republican colleagues have been with excuses of voter fraud, which hardly exist, have put barriers in the way of people of color voting, the old story in ohio with the republican secretary of state, the inner cities had with hundreds of voters had two voting machines, and the suburbs, with fewer voters, had four or five machines. i think it goes right to the american soul, but i don't know if it will bring over the republican colleagues. they think it is mother's milk. >> when they talked about gun violence, he used this repetitive cadence about deserving a vote, deserving a vote. why do you think he chose this language? obviously it had an impact on
the victims and what they have gone through. but what does it mean in terms of the legislature and what they said? >> no, he was being very, very smart. not every proposal will get a majority. very significant proposals, i think in the past if they're given a separate vote on the floor, i am working closely with senators, joe manchin, mark kirk, like me, who gets an f-rating from the nra, we are are very close to an agreement on universal background checks that would really make a difference. it is sort of the sweet spot. meaning that it will do the most good in terms of curbing gun violence, but at the same time has a real chance of passing. >> what is your pitch to members of the senate who don't yet support that idea? how you convince people -- >> okay. >> to come along on that one if they're not there already? >> there are two types of issues, one would limit gun
ownership of assault weapons. they get to the people that the second amendment purists can't. on the other hand, the second amendment, trafficking, the one that i have been pushing, universal registration, they don't hurt law abiding citizens. if you're not a felon or you are not mentally ill, or a spouse abuser, none of what we're doing will hurt you at all. and that is the way to break through and form a coalition, saying we're not hurting law abiding people, but you have to admit, mr. or mrs. pro-nra, we have to tighten up to laws to prevent felons from getting guns. >> senator chuck schumer, thank you very much for your time. >> it was a great speech, the president hit it out of the park. he was true to himself and his believes, i thought it was the best speech he gave.
>> it was a hoot to watch chuck schumer, and john mccain at an event like this. watching the bipartisanship laid out in the seating arrangement is something that is both rare and fun to see. a speech touched on a number of similar policy issues at the top of the second-term agenda and that made news of. he used the state of the union to tout the end of the iraq war. tonight he had specific news on the other war, on afghanistan. >> already we have brought home 33,000 of our brave servicemen and women. this spring, forces will move into a support role while afghan security forces take the lead. tonight i can announce that over the next year, another 34,000 american troops will come home
from afghanistan. this drawdown will continue. by the end of next year, the war in afghanistan will be over. [ applause ] >> 34,000 u.s. troops will come home from afghanistan over the next year. that was news. the president made news on the domestic policy front, calling for an increase in the federal minimum wage to $9 per hour. he also addressed what has become a partisan issue across the country. the small "d" democratic act of voting itself. >> defending our freedom is not just the job of our military alone. we must all do our part to make sure that our god-given rights are protected here at home. that includes one of the most fundamental rights of democracy, the right to vote.
now -- when any american, no matter where they live or what their party are denied that right, because they can't afford to wait for five, six, seven hours to cast their ballot, we are betraying our ideals. [ applause ] >> so tonight i am announcing a non-partisan commission to improve the voting experience in america. it definitely needs improvement. >> perhaps the emotional crescendo of the speech happens toward the end when the protest president pivoted to gun violence. 31 members of congress, all on the democratic side, brought to the speech somebody affected by gun violence. the president appealed for a vote in congress on gun safety by making reference to a number of those in attendance, including the parents of a chicago honor student, a teenage
girl, 15 years old, shot and killed days after attending the president's inauguration. watch. >> her parents are in this chamber tonight along with more than two dozen americans whose lives have been torn apart by gun violence. they deserved a vote. [ applause ] >> they deserve a vote. they deserved a vote. gaby deferreds deserves a vote. the families of newtown deserve a vote. the families of all laura deserve a vote. the families of oak creek and
tucson and blackburn and the countless other communities ripped open by gun violence, they deserve a simple vote. >> he also called for comprehensive immigration reform and got bipartisan reform on that. he called for change on climate change. the severe weather is not come in his words, a freak coincidence. he pledged more transparency on the issue of counter-terrorism. shortly after he wrapped up the union address, the republican response was given by marco review. some of his rhetorical points were probably an awkward, big, physical lurched for a drink of water. there was a republican response to the republican response to the president's state of the union address. there was a tea party response delivered by republican senator rand call of kentucky on line after mark grabow finished his
response. he said today that he did not want the republicans to be the opposition but for them to be the alternative. if you did not like him, they were putting up an alternative to the alternative kind of like off broadway and off, off broadway. there is lots to discuss. i want to go to the reverend al sharpton and lawrence o'donnell. what are we hearing from the president that indicates any difference in approach to a second term as compared to his first? >> he was very clear he would be more aggressive. he talked a lot about the executive action he would take. he would go around congress. i don't think we heard that as much in the first term. i think he was very specific in how he wanted to go several courses. what was billed as a rebuttal but never rebutted, because
mr. rubio mentioned immigration, never said how the republicans wanted to have immigration. he says his parents were immigrants, and that was it. he said he went to school on government money but is against government. aside from the awkward drink of water, i think his real problem is that it was the wrong night, wrong city. tuesday night in washington, wednesday night in new york. there is a place called the apollo. amateur night on wednesday night at the apollo. >> ouch. that hurt me in the crossfire. lawrence o'donnell. >> it was a major proposal that he kept under a certain wracked by not mentioning the number. he said that he was willing, in this negotiation, to avoid the sequestered and offered to the republicans' medicare cuts. he did not specify an amount, just the same amount that the
bulls commission wanted. he suggested arriving at them in very vague ways, one having more affluent seniors play more. there are a variety of ways to do that. one of them, probably were most of the savings would be, to change the nature of medicare payments from a fee-for-service system, which is very reassuring to the patience, to something that he was very vague about but was probably an overall fee for a patient in which the doctor, many would argue, begins to ration care in order to make a profit off of this limited amount of money that i could get from any individual patient. there is a lot of tension in the kinds of savings the president was talking about for both sides. republicans would be more open to it than republicans -- democrats, but that was the key proposal he made tonight. he was so sensitive about it
that he had to disguise it. it will be a major story tomorrow. >> let's put that to robert gibbs. he is willing to mix it up with us because it's part of his job now. on what lawrence was just saying on that proposal and that being something that might be very hard for democrats to swallow, is the president saying what he will do to entitlements? >> rachel, i think the president has always been up front that we have to make common sense adjustments to medicare. i don't believe that what lawrence is talking about, something that would fundamentally change, as you heard him say the progress that we has made to american seniors. i am reminded of the story on the front page of "the new york times" about the fact that health care being treated differently and treating the patient rather than saying been paid for amputating the leg of a diabetic we pay the doctor to treat that patient and prevent
them from having diabetes. those are the kinds of things we can see great savings in the health care system, but i do not think the president will fundamentally restructure medicare in the way that lawrence is discussing. >> what do you make of marco rubio's charge tonight? he specifically said that he should not be talking about what he likes about medicare. anybody not talking about what is wrong with medicare is constructing it to bankruptcy. that is very consistent with what mitt romney charged. >> save a few gauzy lines about immigration reform. that could have been a speech delivered by paul ryan or mitt romney the day before the election, an election, quite honestly, they lost decisively. it really reminds me that all of this effort that is going on in the republican party really is a marketing scheme. it's really about changing the packaging.
it's really about putting the candy bar in a different wrapper. the very same thing that romney said the day before the election, they lost decisively. marco rubio picked up the mantle and one more time leading off with the fact that the president believes that the private enterprise system is what causes our faults in america. i will note that the only lurched left was to get a bottle of water. again, i was really struck by the fact that as you mentioned, the president outlined a robust american agenda. don't misunderstand him when he says they deserved a vote. he wasn't just speaking about the parents in that room. i think he was speaking about all american citizens and all the proposals that he outlined, whether it's the minimum wage, clean energy, a whole host of these things. those proposals deserve a boat. that is what we want to see.
the contrast of marco rubio giving a personal speech directed not at the country but very personally at the president, i think, is a huge missed opportunity for the republican party. they have to do something differently, or they will continue to lose national elections. >> whether or not you like republican policy ideas or vice versa, but contrast of the president talking and marco rubio talking about the president did not serve him well. >> at the end of the speech, again, it was almost as if it was two different speeches. rubio wants to take it big, let's come together and work on these things together. is this the same guy that was just basically blaming the president for everything, including bad weather? it just seemed very, very -- it will be seen as very off-putting to the people that live in this country and decide elections.
it huge missed opportunity. >> thank you. pleasure to have you here tonight. >> thank you. >> i think rubio -- it sounds primitive as well -- to the caucus voters. i don't think it was aimed at the country. he was speaking to the base of the republican party that does not like the president. he did not lose any votes from those people. he did not solve their problem, but he got a good chunk of it for his purposes. >> there is a question as to whether or not he is has a message. >> he did not get there. >> let's go to choctaw. he joins us from washington. what did they want members of congress to take away from this? >> well, they never said they wanted him to take away saying we wanted to have you have a vote on this. they kept telegraphing, this is
a speech that will be about the economy. it was technically. you can't help but take away that the message that this speech is going to be remembered for is a very emotional ending, one of the most emotional state of the unions, which are not normally emotional addresses. that will end up being the takeaway. they did want to send this message to congress to say this is not the consolatory obama that came in january 2011 with that need that he knew he was chasing. that he was going to have to work together with the republicans. a somewhat toned down barack obama from the 2012 state of the union trying to talk to the voters, set the tone for the campaign. he wanted to deliver this. hey, guys, we have to do some of these votes. i wonder, they have a lot of what i would call very well pull
tests. the issue that they hit on on education and the economy in particular, things like universal prepaid, raising the minimum wage, these are tangible items that average, middle-class families listening to this , speech. i have a feeling that could resonate very well. they accomplish what they wanted to do, which is talk about the economy in simpler terms over the head of washington. >> chuck todd, thank you for joining us. >> all right. >> joining us from san antonio, texas, the mayor of san antonio. mayor castro, thank you for joining us. >> let me ask you about the word comprehensive. we have all been if through watching the attempt by the government to reform immigration back in the '80s under reagan.
what stopped it from being affected is that it was never enforced. it really wasn't given any credit. when we say the phrase, comprehensive, what does that mean to you? >> what it means is that it has at least three things, first, that it will continue to enhance the security of our borders, even though as president obama has pointed out, that has been enhanced tremendously over the past few years. secondly, when an employer hire someone, they can no that person is here legally. they will be held accountable. fired, and this is the part of that is at issue here, that we do something positive to put the 11 million folks who are undocumented on a pathway to citizenship after they have paid a fine, paid back taxes, learned english and gone to the back of the line. >> what will be the toughest
part of that to win? >> oh, there's no question the toughest part is the issue of a pathway to citizenship. unfortunately it seems as though what some of the house republicans want is to create a permanent subclass of folks who would not be citizens, maybe not even lawful, permanent residents. i thought that the ending of president obama's speech in calling the country together but also using the word citizen and saying that is what we are made of and we are, that has a lot of resonance as debate comprehensive reform. >> those opposing a full pass way to citizenship, they don't like voting? >> well probably some of the folks who are absolutely opposed to citizenship, that's at the
top of their mind, sure. i agree with that. >> what is your bet right now? based on what the president said tonight i think we will have less troops in afghanistan. that will be real. he is completely in charge of that. immigration looks to me like a great prospect for this year, the great hope. republicans want the issue behind them because it has hurt them at the polls. tissues -- democrats believe in the issue. the unions, i have never understood their position on this. do you think it will ever get done? >> i believe that it will get done. i believe that the republican party knows that if it doesn't get done that what they saw in 2012 will happen again in 2014, 2016 and beyond that. as i said last week when i
testified in front of the house judiciary committee, america is watching these legislators on this boat. >> thank you very much, mayor castro, from san antonio. >> thank you. >> much to report and analyze. policies and the politics in the big speech and in the response from mark grabow. this is a bill live coverage of the 2013 state of the union. >> after a decade of grinding war, our brave men and women in uniform are coming home. humans. even when we cross our t's and dot our i's, we still run into problems.
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we know our economy is stronger when we reward an honest day's work with honest wages. today, a full-time worker making a winning wage earns $14,500 a year. even with the tax relief we put in place. a family with two kids that earns the minimum wage still lives below the poverty line. that's wrong. that's why i sense the last time we raised the minimum wage, 19 states chose to bump there is even higher. tonight, let's declare that in the wealthiest nation on earth, no one who works full time should have to live in poverty and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour. >> that was the big policy surprise of tonight's state of the union. president obama calling on congress to raise the federal minimum wage from where it is right now, $7.25 to $9 an hour.
alex wagner joins us now. i think the president made news on this point. is this a realistic policy vote? >> it was really shocking that republicans couldn't stand up for equal pay, couldn't stand up for a fair voting system in the u.s., to see them agree to $9 an hour would seem to me to be a jump. at the same time, this is the story of america right now, one of the most under discussed issues in the country, the fact that one in two american families live at the poverty line. the poverty line is 23,000, $24,000 a year. to some degree, it should not be shocking that they will take this up as a matter of discourse. at the same time, of course it was. we have come so far away from the subject of poverty and
mobility. it was a really important moment for the state of the union. >> something they discovered over the past decade was when you put the minimum wage, you raise the minimum wage on the ballot at the state level, not only does it pass, but it passes by a lot and with so much wind in its sales that it tends to drive up democratic voter turnout. progressive groups have always seen this as a sleeper issue. if democrats embrace it, it might have brought electoral effect. is that driving any of this? >> sure. look, what we know right now is that he is thinking about the country. that is a result of the fact that he is not enamored of washington and washington politics. it has not been good for him the past four years. he is talking to real americans and knows that wages have stagnated. that is in parallel with labor
unions. middle-class wages since 1979 have gone nowhere. this is a winning issue, and it's weird to me that more democrats don't take this up. one of my favorite tweets of the net was that president obama is talking about a nondollar minimum wage. he was the last person to take this up and be seen as a fighter in the middle class in wages and in talking about poverty as a problem that needed to be addressed. >> democrats in the states where they have championed this are smiling over this tonight, both as policy and politics. thank you. very smart. >> thanks, rachel. >> joining us now, senior red house adviser to president obama. good evening miss jarrett. >> good evening, al and everybody else on the panel. the president surprised everyone by calling for a minimum wage of
$9. is there a white house plan, given what we know the president is proposing to congress, immigration, gun legislation and other measures, is there a direct plan to go after raising the minimum wage? >> absolutely. he will take his case to the american people as he did tonight. he will be traveling around our country. what i really thought was that he was speaking directly into the living rooms of so many people. his message really resonated. i think he nailed the answer to the three questions, what are we going to do to bring jobs back, how are we going to equip our work force to be prepared for the jobs of tomorrow, and how are you going to earn a good living? those are the questions the american people wanted to hear the answers to. he gave robust answers, and we have to turn those words into action. >> i know he is doing a conference call with a lot of
his volunteers around the country tonight, tomorrow going to north carolina, atlanta, then chicago. is the strategy for the president to galvanize americans to put pressure on the congress to deal with some of what he laid out tonight? >> absolutely. he completed that phone call, the first phone call he made after his speech. he said to his supporters, i want to speak to you because i need your help. in order for us to do what we have in store, we need to make sure the american people are involved and committed. that is what he began tonight and will continue as he travels throughout the week. yes, he will continue to work with congress to join him in this effort, but very importantly he has to take the message directly to the american people and ask for their support and help. >> he ended with a crescendo of a very emotional field around
gun legislation and around voting. we noticed when he referred to the 102-year-old lady, you were in the box with her. what was the mood of those that were seated in the first lady's box, family members of victims of gun violence and this lady that stood in line 102 years old, to vote. give us some mood as the president really drew on the emotions of both of these issues. >> as you said, it was very emotional. these are people who have suffered and sacrificed and are resilient and a determined. when you hear their stories, when you see a woman who is 102 and stands in line for hours, traveling to washington. there she is sitting in to wash she is sitting in the box with the first lady and the president
took a picture with her and she met everyone after the speech, it says a lot about the strength of the country, resilience of the country, the fact that ordinary people can do extraordinary things. that's the momentum we have to build, keep it going. we can't just call it one night's activity. it has to be momentum that continues until legislation is passed, until everybody does what they can do within their control to move our country in a positive direction. we felt good about the president's speech and i hope as the people listened, it resonated with them as well. >> thank you. >> good night, everyone. >> good night. do not change the channel. there is so much news to evaluate. we have some of the specific challenge the president made tonight. remember that moment when we got to see how awkward it was to see
john mccain sitting between the two senators from new york when the president called out senator mccain by name? senator mccain didn't look happy about the fact he was called out or the fact he was named. more when we come back. >> we must all do our part, make sure our god given rights are protected here at home. that includes one of the most funnel fundamental rights of dem circumstanc -- democracy, the right to vote. to hold packages for us. great job. [ applause ] thank you. and on a protocol note, i'd like to talk to tim hill about his tendency to use all caps in emails. [ shouting ] oh i'm sorry guys. ah sometimes the caps lock gets stuck on my keyboard. hey do you wanna get a drink later? [ male announcer ] hold packages at any fedex office location.
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i urge this congress to get together and pursue a bipartisan cla climate for change, like the one that joe lieberman and john mccain worked on. but if congress won't act, i will. i will direct my cabinet to come up with executive actions we can take now and in the future to reduce pollution, repair our communities for climate change and speed the transition to more sustainable energy. >> president obama called for action on climate change saying he wants congress to act and if they don't, he will. joining us is chris hayes.
chris, what was that shout out to john mccain and joe lieberman about? that seemed to make john mccain unhappy? >> he did his patented grimace smile. it was a standard cap and trade bill along the framework of what would later be passed by the house of representatives after president and killed in the senate because no republics wou republicans would support it. john mccain and joe lieberman in three sessions introduced bills to put a cap on car bbon and th amount would have gone down year for year. what democrats tried to pass in 2009 and could not get done. it was a reminder to the republicans that there was a remarkable and in my time
covering politics, lurch backwards. newt gingrich was haunted by sitting with nancy pelosi endorsing it. john mccain favored cap and trade. all of that has been undone and destroyed as the republican party has put this in this shrinking denial of the political strain. i think the president was trying to point that out and that's why john mccain felt uncomfortable. >> sitting between two democratic senators and wishing he wasn't. he said i am not going to urge congress to act, i recognize they might not, but he threatened to go it alone and do something on his own. how significant do you think those were if congress couldn't get it done? >> this is a huge sleeper
policy. the supreme court has found that there is the epa could regulate the clean air act. there could be a cap and trade kind of regime. they would have to structure it differently, which means the executive and conservatives have been fighting tooth and nail to be sure it doesn't happen. if there is little political coverage in congress, it is the threat of uni rival action that has some republicans and lobbyists on the hill scurrying because they are worried about the president following through on that promise. i thought that was a big deal, the not so veiled threat.
>> that explains about the president explaining it in speeches, so people understand it if he has to do it. thank you. we will have more on the president potentially acting outside of congress to accomplish broad climate goals. what do you think the likelihood of that is and what do you think the political impact will be? >> i think it will be unlikely and would provoke overriding legislation to revoke it if it did. there weren't democratic votes. there weren't 45 democratic votes. as long as you have democrats from west virginia, you don't have democrats on that kind of bill. everything chris says is absolutely right and lobbyists are worried about it.
it is something the president can use, but i don't think he can convince republics he really would go through with that at the scale that chris was suggesting is possible. >> it is interesting to see the president build this public case in a way he never has. >> he will try smaller pieces, but chris's point is that the president has this massive authority. if you use that authority, then you will see how fast they can write a bill. >> the next fight will be about spending again. normally that is not the most exciting subject under the sun unless you have ezra standing by. and we have that. this is msnbc's live coverage of the state of the union. we will be right back. (announcer) at scottrade, our clients trade and invest
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preschool available to every single child in america. every dollar we invest in high quality early childhood education can save more than $7 later on by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy and even reducing violent crime. >> making high quality preschool available to every kid in america. that's an idea, very specific idea and quite an ambitious list of ideas in it. ezra is joining us. i understand you are feeling rather bullish about the president's speech. why is that? >> because it gives me plenty to do. i was genuinely stunned how much was in there. think back when president obama gave his speech.
this year the speech was modest. more manufacturing jobs. but then you get to the state of union and get the american jobs act which made an appearance at the conventions speech. you get early education for kids under 4, cap in carbon, increase in the minimum wage. have a bit on manufacturing, deficit, gun control. if president obama managed this entire agenda, it would be a different country, measurable changes. leading the list was early childhood education. i brought a graph on this. the thing you should know, because this is such a huge no-brainer. this is from a conservative guy at the university of chicago. what he did was showed the kind
of return on investment we get from spending at different ages. on the right is job training. education investment we do for adults. there is some return there that is not that big. on the left is early childhood education. when you get an early childhood program, you get a return on investment on that kid's life. it is like nothing else. the numbers president obama gave was up to $7 back for every dollar we put in. if we could get that done, that is a transformtive policy. tonight i was not expecting going into the speech much beyond the level of that. >> ezra, is this the sort of policy change that there are good pilot level programs at the state where states have done this in a universal way and a
national model could copy them? >> very much. there are two things we have seen on early pre-k. programs we have seen enormous effect. there have been pilots in chicago. what the obama administration is thinking about is the universal pre-k program in oklahoma. oklahoma and georgia have big pre-k programs here. red states. they have a good program study by georgetown and there are good effects. they made sure that teachers did not get treated worse. they get the same starting salaries. i believe they are required to have a master's degree in education. when georgetown did a study, they found big changes in what those kids readiness for school coming out of that program.
there are all kinds of things of how the changes persist, we haven't done enough studies yet. but we can make a huge difference. and president obama was careful to say different programs in different states to see what is working best and extend that across the country. >> seems rational when you put it that way. thanks, ezra. ed is with us also. we saw you interview nancy pelosi about the speech. are you getting the sthaens tonig sense that tonight's speech will change the agenda in washington? >> two issues on the table that were not expected to be as divisive as they are. firearms and immigration. one thing that needs to be done -- at least that's what
democrats told me -- they want to make sure that the mojo about the economy is not slowed down at all. that the momentum towards doing something to keep the economy going isn't slowed down by these crucial issues cast upon us. the two biggest were on immigration reform and firearms. the democrats have never been, policywise, in this fogs do somethi -- position to do something in this country. they will get comprehensive background checks, close the loophole on the gun show. but i didn't get the sense that they would get assault weapons ban. they will push for it. there were a lot of victims in the house tonight, a lot of people touched by gun violence. this was positioned for full effect because the president is determined to get something done on this. i thought it was an emotional
chamber. the politics has to be right to make a change and you have to have the right policy at the right time. the president put everything he had into doing something on firearms tonight. another thing that struck me is when the president said the state of the union is strong, there wasn't much response. we have a long way to go and democrats are nervous about the obstruction the republicans have put up time and again. if you can't cheer for minimum wage. when you can't give an applause for voting rights, the republicans are in a different world. in the midst of all of that, here is the president striking a bipartisan stotone and saying h not giving a defense of the big three. he told the base we have come a long way, but we have to accept changes in medicare. there is no poll that says this is what the base wants or americans want.
a little bit for everybody to be chewing at tonight. i thought it was a policy oriented stage, but positioned well, especially for firearms. having the visual of green ribbon. joe biden himself and all of the victims, you are right in terms of that being the touch toni. ed, thank you, my friend. if you have any plans, delay them. we will be here until 1:00 a.m. we will be right back. etire whe, which would be fine if bob were a vampire. but he's not. ♪ he's an architect with two kids and a mortgage. luckily, he found someone who gave him a fresh perspective on his portfolio. and with some planning and effort, hopefully bob can retire at a more appropriate age.
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political msnbc analyst. >> democrats have been ulosing this argument about big versus small argument, what's effective and ineffective, smart versus snot. think about the child care education. you could make the argument that is smart. how we do spending. i hope that part of the audience for that were democrats in congress, they are going to have to get a lot smarter on how they have this fight and frame this discussion if they are going to win. >> when mark rubio gave his criticism saying that president obama is a straw man, and that big government is the reason we have the problems we have. was he engaging in the last
fight or disagreeing with president obama? >> he was fighting the last fight. they think that wins. but i would push back. budget cuts, are they any more effective or smarter? i don't think so. that is the frame to say what are going to be the smart investments for the future that make sense for the country and economy. >> thank you, karen. it is frustrating. al sharpton, it's frustrating to hear the big government/small government fight, when the fact is that the government jobs are the ones disappearing, which are holding economic numbers back in a big way. >> that is true. the problem is we have created private sector jobs, losing
public sector jobs, which is why in many latino communities and african communities are losing jobs. this fits within the budget. >> on that issue of big government/small government, were they talking past each other? >> they always talk past each other. rubio was saying he tried to put a friendly sounding handle on everything he said after the accusation stuff. he said, for example, of course solar and wind should be part of our portfolio. but republicans don't talk that way. they go straight to the coal and oil. >> msnbc's coverage continues in
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cast a balance. he said within a year the forces in afghanistan would be cut in half. he talked about putting people to work. i have called it rebuild america. the president called it fix it first. the president's strong words for congress, was that economists and sports americans agree that cuts would be a bad idea. some republicans only prevent the defense cuts is an even worse idea. he chided republicans for playing with the economy. >> the greatest country in the world cannot conduct business by drifting from one manufacturing crisis to the next, we can't do it! let's agree. let's agree right here, right now, to keep the people's government open and pay our
bills on time and always uphold the full faith and credit of the united states of america. >> here is the real music. the president's emotional high points was victims of gun violence. and voting rights, asked bipartisan on his campaign last fall as well as mitt romney's to improve the voting experience in america. >> any american no matter where they live or what their party, are denied that right because they can't afford to wait for five or six or seven hours just to cast their ballot, we are betraying our ideal. >> who can argue with that. i am joined by congressman and woman.
the president talked about the need to make it easier to vote. this is a person who voted in the later part of her life, 102 years old. here he is talking about it. >> we should follow the example of the north miami woman named desaline victor. she was told the wait to vote might be six hours. as time ticked by, her concern was not with her tired body and aching feet or whether folks like her got to have her say. people stayed in line to support her. she is 102 years old. they erupted in cheers when she put on a sticker that said "i voted." >> the efforts by the republican national committee and the right to vote to do every trick in the
book. reminds me of literacy tests and poll taxes and time on minorities, time, make them wait and they will give up. >> i remember those days also as a child, growing up in el paso, texas when my parents and grandparents could not vote. poll taxes. we have to move forward. having this woman in the audience tonight, it was just remarkable to be able to see her and to realize that she remembers those days, and that she was determined she was going to exercise her full democratic right and she did regardless of the length of time she had to wait. the president took the stand for the public to understand that every vote is cast and counted and people can vote in an easy
manner. we go around the world reminding people of the fundamental right to vote in a democracy and here in this country people have to wait for long periods of time. >> congresswoman i was in south africa when blacks were allowed to vote for the first time. it was the most inspirational trip, along with pulling down the great china wall, and the lines there were four hours. instead of proposing a bill or pushing something strong through, okay, why don't we get my lawyer and her lawyer to work it out. >> the commission is where a good idea dies.
>> john kerry told me the same thing happened when he lost the election. he said look what happened in cleveland. look at the place where you have a lot of democrats waiting and waiting and waiting the way they set up the systems. the gun motion -- here we are. many victims of gun violence in the audience including the parents of one young woman killed in california, just a mile from the president's house. listen to the president. >> her parents, nate and kleecl
are in this chamber tonight along with more than two dozen lives who have been torn apart by gun violence. they deserve a vote. they deserve a vote. they deserve a vote. debbie jeffers deserves a vote. the families of newtown deserve a vote. the families of aurora deserve a vote. the families of oak creek and tucson and black burke and the countless other communities ripped open by gun violence, they deserve a vote. >> not that they deserve gun safety, but a vote on it.
>> i thought that was the emotional high point of the night and a brilliant piece of political theater on the president's part and the part of the democrats that might have a practical effect. republicans were being shamed publicly into at least being willing to consider something more sweeping and deeper in terms of reforming gun laws in the united states than conventional wisdom would have you think they would allow. a bunch of democrats that had gotten this idea together, bringing victims of gun violence to the event tonight, the president put it in the speech. it was a call and response, almost religious type atmosphere. i don't usually go up to the chamber, chris, for a speech for state of a union. i haven't in a number of years. i did tonight. i'm really glad i did because you could feel the emotion in the room. and to the extent that
republican members and wavering democrats and red tape remember that tonight in the house, may give the president more room to move on guns than i thought. i'm not naive. may be hard to pass anything on the hill, but it was a brilliant way to go about it. >> it seems to me the way it will work out is the speaker says i will bring something to the floor if it passes the senate. by the time is gets through the senate, there may not be anything more than background checks. it sounds like he's not committing to a vote at all. >> the speaker must commit to a vote. the president challenged republicans and democrats tonight. he's going on the road, into this country. he was speaking tonight to the american people. they want this violence to end. in my own district we have many young people who continue to die
in oakland, california as a result of gun violence. the president is calling on the people of the united states of america not only to insist on a vote, but that these bills get passed. >> what the president had to say tonight on jobs. i have been pushing this, like bloomberg and arnold schwarzenegger have been pushing this. looks like he's moving. let's listen. >> hundreds of new jobs brought to north carolina. they said if we upgrade our infrastructure, we will bring more jobs. that's the attitude of countries around the world. i know you want to see those projects around your district, that means ribbon cuttings. tonight i propose a fix it first program.
put people to work on our most urgent repairs, like the nearly 70,000 deficient bridges across the country. >> i'm hesitant to applaud because it's like the thing with guns. i hope we have a vote. where is the big money? infrastructure is expensive. yields jobs, but requires capital investment. we have 70,000 bridges. potholes, and subway systems going deeper and deeper underground. and catching up in terms of mass transit. what is this? a model city? will he do it? >> i think a lot of it, like the gun thing will end up in adds across the country. this was to members of the house
of representatives to shame and embarrass them. the whole joke about going to the ribbon cutting, because you have to do these projects in a way that the districts benefit. he was saying there is something in it for you. they are the road blocks. >> chris, there is no lonny r mon money in it. he can talk about the fix it first program, but he didn't put a dollar on a and it is my understanding it is not a huge stimulus. he is not going to convince congress to put up money for another infrastructure program. so cooperative efforts between business and government, private sector and universities, that type of thing -- bill clinton is talking about this -- which
takes time and can work. but the notion he will have another big infrastructure program through this congress is a pipe dream. >> that's too bad. thank you both for coming on. coming up, the dueling responses from the gop. mark rubio and paul for the tea party. this is "hardball." humans. even when we cross our t's and dot our i's, we still run into problems. namely, other humans. which is why at liberty mutual insurance, auto policies come with new car replacement and accident forgiveness if you qualify. see what else comes standard
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first senator marco rubio who was elected in the tea party.re the problem. >> more government isn't going to create opportunities. it's going to limit them. >> but in contradition, he talks about how government programs have helped him and his family. >> i believe in federal financial aid. i couldn't have gone to college without it. and medicare provided my father the care he needed to be treated for cancer and ultimately die with dignity and provides the care my mother receives now. >> rubio isn't enough for the tea party anymore. up next was rand paul with a tea
party note. >> we demand he adheres to the constitution. we won't let him trend on the second amendment. we will stand up against excessive government power wherever we see it. we cannot and will not allow any president to act as if he were a king. >> i am joined by jenny and martin. jenny, why do you think there needed to be two speeches from the right? wasn't the republicans' response adequate? >> thanks for having me. both have sent us almost $17 billion into defendant and i think the tea party decided to have this response so there was somebody advocating tea party
values. george w., i voted for the guy thinking he would be common sense, why didn't he veto a single spending bill. he didn't even get into the iraq war which was unnecessary. why did he spend every dollar he got his hands on if he was a republican? >> i don't know why he did it. i know that spending and the spending continued since then are causing major problems for our economy. americans are concerned about the economy, about getting back to work and about the deficit. >> who is paying for the prescription drugs bill? i always wondered who would pay for that. i thought it was put on the books. >> i think we are all paying for the prescription drug bill. it is the debt we are racking up and we are sending that debt on to future generations. we are kicking the can down the road instead of taking responsibility ourselves. >> talk to my daughter about
that. it's one of her concerns. david, the president gave what i thought was a pretty good speech. it was hard for me until the very end to know where his passion lay, clearly on guns and voting rights, but there was so much in there in terms of infrastructure and immigration, i didn't feel the pulse. >> i thought it was a powerful, progressive agenda he was laying out for the second term. he wasn't trying to forge deals and force compromises they have said they were not interested in. he was trying to lead. saying there is more than the death -- debt. >> on guns he said give me a vote. >> you can even vote no. chris, you have been talking about bridges for the last two years now. >> where is the money? show me the money.
>> listen, you can't have -- jenny and i are talking debt, debt, debt. >> i want to know what we are doing in investments. >> you lost the last election on that point. the american people are not debt fixated. they want to see investments and education. that's what this election was fought about. >> the polling from the pugh foundation from jan show the economy, debt are the top issues. >> economy -- >> yes, the economy. >> that's about jobs. they don't favor the rand paul type of tax on medicare. or paul ryan. one of the most ludicrous things is rubio said he went to school on federal loans and said what
should we do for kids today? give them more information about what might happen if they take out loans. that doesn't help out kids. it was absurd. >> let jenny talk. >> all we are saying in tea party patriots is asking government to cut one penny out of every dollar. if they would do that, we could be at a balanced budget in six years. it's not drastic and will not harmony of us to do that. we are not talking about that much money. it wouldn't take long to get our budget balanced so we could start paying down the debt. >> madeway through the republican response, mark rubio made a move, it had only to do with showmanship. let's wash. watch. >> nothing touched me more than the false promises the president
laid out tonight. >> what do you make, david? >> he started out saying the president is wrong because he believes the economy tanked because there wasn't high enough taxes and government. that's not what the government believes. the tea party crowd, if you ask jenny, have never come to terms with what happened in 2007 and 2008, the corporate abuses that led to main street being brought down. they talked extensively about ruling the main street so they don't screw the tea party. nothing about the mess. we goss it. >> i was trying to have some fun with david, but he's at high speed. let me ask you about this study. right now the federal government
collects about 15% of our money and spends about 25%. all you hear from the tea party is cut the spending. how can you balance it around 20 unless you raise taxes. >> only 15% of the gdp is being taxed. can you in the tea party pay for what you want -- >> i think there is agreement here, when we have unemployment that goes up in the month of january, gdp contracted in the fourth quarter of last year and on the day that those numbers are coming out, wall street goes up. people in wall street are benefiting as the rest of us are -- >> that's good policy, i like that rhetoric, too. you said cut a penny out of the government. that will leave the government
spending above 20%. why can't we raise 20% in revenue? you don't want to cut it enough to get down to 15%, do you? >> i want to kout it so we have a balanced budget. we are putting the burden on our children and we can't afford to do that. that's why we start it. >> chris, here's another question. if you are saying wall street is doing so well, then why do all of the tea party parties oppose barack obama when he wants the wealthy to pay more. >> i want to get rid of the crummey deals. the establishment on both sides make deals that benefits each other. they take care of each other and not taking care of america and the hard working american people. >> stop, david. she is on the show.
she has the right to speak. >> sure. >> jenny i believe you have an inconsistency on how we pay. if you look at medicaid and medicare and defense, that costs a lot of money. everybody would like to cut spending, but you are not willing to equalize spending with revenues. that's my thought. come back and we will debate it again. jenny martin for the tea party. thanks, david. you were a little brash tonight. thanks for coming on and staying up so late. we want to know how you would have finished this statement this year. take a picture of yourself and send it to us.
or upload it directly to facebook.com/msnbc. then vote for your favorite. we will have much more of what the president said throughout the hour. up next, the manhunt in southern california, for former police officer dorner. [ male announcer ] marie callender's puts all the things we love about sunday meals into each of her pot pies. like tender white meat chicken and vegetables in a golden flaky crust that's made from scratch. marie callender's pot pies. it's time to savor. but that doesn't mean icrust don't want to make money.stor. i love making money. i try to be smart with my investments. i also try to keep my costs down. what's your plan? ishares.
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the other big story tonight is the manhunt for former police officer dorner. he is accused of killing two police officers. there was a cabin burned to the ground, but no word on whether dorner was in there. john joins us. always looking for the czar. we don't have any idea whether mr. dorner was in that cabin when it was burnt down. >> the spokesman for the san diego sheriffs office said they are confident they believe that the suspect, who they believe to be officer dorner, they are confident he is in there. they don't think he got out. they had enough of a cordon around it that they do believe
his body is in there. they haven't been able to go in because it's still too hot. also they believe there is a lot of live ammunition in there. when live ammunition gets hot in a fire like that, it goes off. so they were waiting until the fire cools down and they can get in there. they don't know how soon that will be. they hope to identify the body through dental records and hope to do that on site. >> do we know what caused the fire? >> our friends at knbc here in los angeles are reporting that law enforcement officials tell them the sequence of events was something like this. they broke windows, approached the house, broke windows, fired tear gas in. used some sort of communication system, whether a loud speaker or something, we don't know, to tell dorner the place was
surrounded and he should give himself up. they heard nothing so they used an armored bearcat to break down walls. in that process they heard a gunshot from inside and then a fire broke out. now we don't know what caused that fire to break out. was it a tear gas canister that went in? was it as they were breaking walls, a propane gas tank which the owner did have in the cabin, there might have been a spark. once the fire started they decided it was not safe to go in and to let the fire burn itself out. >> with the suspect shooting at the police through the cabin up until that time? >> they said there is some confusion when the shooting
started, but the only thing they got back out of that cabin was gunfire. they say there was no communication out from the cabin. the only thing they got out was gunfire. they can't even estimate how many rounds were fired. they say that it was some descriptions of it as being automatic, semi-automatic. >> john, you have been great reporting this. i hope everybody reads the paper. what a saga. tomorrow morning we will be reading two big stories in the country, what the president had to say and what happened to christopher dorner. thanks so much. up next, back to the president's state of the union speech. and he is saying it's time to rebuild america. that's a phrase we have been using here. we are going to talk to an
expert, is he satisfied with what the president said about rebuilding america. you are watching "hardball." >> tonight i propose a fix it first program to put people to work on our most urgent repairs, like the 70,000 deficient bridges across the country. [ bells jingle ] [ cash register dings ] [ male announcer ] wow. a brave choice. okay, focus. think courage. think shaun white.
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guides our efforts. >> the president took aim at republicans who think they can easily trim the deficit through cuts. >> we can't ask senior citizens and working families to shoulder the entire burden. we want to grow the middle class by shifting the tax care on to families struggling or forcing there to be more layoffs of teachers or cops. we have to understand we can't just cut our way to prosperity. broad-based economic growth requires a balanced approach with spending cuts and revenue and with everybody doing their fair share. that's the approach i offer tonight. >> i have two political analysts
with me tonight. i want to start with governor rendell. the democrats believe government has to do infrastructu infrastructure, has to build and get the economy to grow. unemployment is at 7.9. democrats are up against the republicans which the only purpose is to cut government spending. that seems to be the philosophy. they are at war with each other. >> that's the big clash. everyone sort of agrees, if you get them in a moment of truth, that we have to do long-term debt reduction. but at the same time we have to do short-term things to invest,
create jobs in infrastructure and development. the president was right in talking about investing in research and development. we get those dollars back 100-fold. this is a $50 billion program to fix the nation's bridges. it is a good program and will help. but it is a drop in the bucket. the american society of civilian engineers says we have to pay $1.1 billion between now and 2020 just to make them passable. so it would be suggested to impanel a commission to enhance government, state and local investments. there are ways to do this, but we have to have a real long-term
plan. >> the challenge here -- ed koch just passed away. a powerful mayor, but what he could do was hang on. new york, the subway needs to be rebuilt, everybody below manhattan needs to be fixed. now the government seems to be operating like that. >> travel, go to other countries and see the infrastructure they are building, the airports -- >> france. >> everywhere you go. spend a week and a half in china. it is amazing. it used to be a bipartisan issue, infrastructure. used to sail through. you tried to figure the proper amount of money to spend. but it is penny wise and pound foolish not to repair your
bridges and repair them. it's a recipe for decline. >> governor christy has made his name by saying i'm not going to fix the lincoln tunnel or rebuild or open wider passes from new jersey to new york city which is their essential trade route. >> new jersey is 37th or 38th in job creation because infrastruk to structure is a way to increase trade. there are countless bridges that support i-95 on its way to philadelphia. to repair those bridges is a $4 billion price tag. the city and state doesn't have the money. it has to come from somewhere. >> that's from florida to the top of the country. >> it went down three days and
in those days, 180,000 vehicles a day go over those bridges. >> to make your point whshgs we would go to florida on a college trip and see those white owned signs. there wasn't stripes. >> it was a speed trap, a joke. but it took the republicans and lincoln going back to a civil war era. governor, what do you think the $50 million will do? >> it's a drop in the bucket, but it will help on the problem of bridges. and it is a serious problem. democrats and republicans alike have to understand if we are going to be exceptional, we will have to invest in our own future, education, energy.
the president has it right, but we have to do it in the right scale. >> i think we need heft. remember that "where's the beef?" >> thank you. up next, the most dramatic moment in the speech tonight, the president's calling for gun safety. this is "hardball." [ male announcer ] there are only so many foods that make kids happy.
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we are back. we saw a powerful image tonight, more than 30 victims of gun violence. president obama seized the moment. >> the families of newtown deserve a vote. the families of aurora deserve a vote. the families of oak creek and black burke aburg and tucson an countless other communities ripped open by the gun deserve a boat. >> nearly everyone in the room were on their feet, probably because of the people in the room with them. i have the victoria and the
group of three with me. did the president bring it home? >> i think he brought it home. that was the emotional heart and soul of the night, chris. he will not get everything he wants, but what he's doing is asking for all of it. he's saying you don't have to vote yes. you can vote no, but he wants to get them on the record on every single piece of legislation. we have money putting money in. we have mayor bloomberg, gaby gifford, and talking about pendleton and bringing home the issue of urban gun violence
which we lose focus on when we loaning at newtown -- looking at newtown. it is a coalition. i thought it was a very powerful moment. >> let's go to the mayor. it seems the republicans are going to play a game here. there are a fewsuburb annites. >> all he has to do is bring the background check to the house. what do you think on the part of that strategy? will bainer get away with it? >> that's what he will do. he will try as best he can to keep his people from having to
cast a vote. mr. obama, on the other hand, have called him out. tonight that ret rekt hetoric b was a shout out, you are going to have to let people say yes or no on that issue. i believe when he moves around the country, he will echo that and that will put a tremendous amount of pressure on the republicans and speaker. >> that's the question. will there be a vote? >> i think the mayor is right. the mayor and everyone remembers watergate, release the tapes, release the tapes. a minimalist. release the evidence, give us our day in court. it seemed to be a minimal demand. >> chris, when we are talking about gun violence, my concern is at the state level because that's where the gun legislation
gets passed. we have some of the most liberal laws when it comes to guns. you can carry a gun in the open. you don't need to have a permit. >> but you are never going to win with those cowboys, are you? >> we are. >> they want to carry guns and holsters into hotels. >> we need to go to state capitals to change that. >> big cities can pass a tough gun law. and then what happens is the guns are brought in from somehow else. this question -- let's start at the top here, joan. what do you think will get done. i'm most confident that the president will bring the troops home from afghanistan because he can do it without a vote. republicans have a need to do something, and democrats have a need to do something. if they can work together and get a bill that even the
hispanic community could say this is better than what we have got because in the long run we get to be american. what else do you think he will get done other than immigration and bringing troops home from afghanistan? >> he will get something done on guns. i was excited to hear him talk about universal preschool. that's important. will he get that this year in the first term? i don't know how many he will get. but to layout that we can't be happy with k-12 any more is huge. he is laying out what the country needs and support behind it. >> do you think the two campaigns can get together from last september? fun to turn it over to the lawyer, but you are a lawyer and know how it works. do you think they can stop this voter suppression around the country?
>> i don't think he can expect anything from those two people. he would love to have them talk to each other, but they are on the other side the aisle on this issue. i believe the president can be optimistic about far more than talked about. preschool i believe is one of the things he will get. i think the troops coming home from afghanistan. i think there will be some gun control, maybe not by congress, but his signature. i think it will be something on immigration, far more than the words tonight. i think he will go to cities and mayors and some governor, like my governor jerry brown and you will see a ton of infrastructure being financed by bonds and other means. that will be a package he is
selling around the country. >> you are a happy man tonight, mayor. i have never seen such optimism from you. thank you. victoria? >> he made a big deal about climate. i think that will be in addition to immigration, another big push. and i think this will fall under the executive line of his power. >> thanks so much. nice so have you all staying up late. that's it for this special edition of "hardball." when we continue, our coverage continues with rachel maddow. my insurance rates are probably gonna double.
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