tv Martin Bashir MSNBC February 19, 2013 4:00pm-5:00pm EST
where for art thou republicans? the president has a message for you. >> if congress allows this meat cleaver approach to take place, it will jeopardize our military readiness, emergency responders, border patrol agents, fbi agents, federal prosecutors, air-traffic controllers, and airport security. thousands of teachers and educators will be laid off. these cuts are not smart, they are not fair. this is not an abstraction. people will lose their jobs. my door is open. i'm willing to work with anybody to get this job done. the last thing our families can afford right now is pain imposed unnecessarily by partisan recklessness and ideological rigidity here in washington. ♪ i couldn't ask for another >> the president who spent the weekend swinging his golf clubs came out swinging on his return
to work this morning. at a special convened gathering in the white house, he addressed the potentially devastating effects of the so-called sequester cuts, which in the words of the president would take a meat cleaver to military and domestic spending. >> so these cuts are not smart, they are not fair. they will hurt our economy. they will add hundreds of thousands of americans to the unemployment roles. this is not an abstraction. people will lose their jobs. >> president used today's appearance with a group of first responders to explain what these cuts would mean to the life of an average american family. cuts to airport security. thousands of teachers laid off. hundreds of thousands denied primary and preventative medical care. and if these cuts do go into effect, the president made sure that everyone would know it was republicans fanaticism over taxes that will be to blame. >> and so far at least what they have expressed is a preference where they'd rather have these cuts go into effect than close a
single tax loophole for the wealthiest americans. not one. >> and it didn't take long for the gop response. in fact, it didn't take any time at all. senator mitch mcconnell's reaction arrived in my inbox before the president finished speaking. today's event at the white house proves once again that more than three months after the november election, president obama still prefers campaign events to common sense, bipartisan action. that was mitch mcconnell the psychic senator. in a paper statement, of course, as congress is currently in recess. speaker john boehner, never one to balk at a touch of plagiarism offered the same criticism but he tried to lay the blame on the president by calling these his sequester cuts. funny that because i seem to remember the speaker striking a different tone on the budget deal that produced the sequester. what was it he said again? >> you look this final agreement we came to with the white house, i got 98% of what i wanted.
i'm pretty happy. >> that was it. let's get right to our panel. david corn is washington bureau chief for mother jones magazine, and karen finney is former dnc communications director. both are msnbc political analysts and i'm delighted to say karen has joined us here in new york. if i can start with you, david, james clapper, the director of national intelligence, told reuters that just the cuts scheduled for our intelligence services would be, in his words, the budgetary equivalent of emergency amputations. can you explain to our viewers, david, why republicans are so happily trumpeting the idea that we should take these cuts on the chin when they could provoke a national security crisis? >> well, i'd like to come up with a anatomy analogy when we go from emergency amputees to chins but nothing comes to mind. i think playing boehner's remark
over again, he got 98% of what he wanted it. this is it. >> 174 republicans voted for that. >> in washington history tends to start about five minutes earlier when you're talking, and you got to go back to what happened that led to that press conference that john boehner said that. it was the republicans saying we're not going to routinely raise the debt ceiling the way we have in the past. we're going to force you to accept budget cuts and they cut a deal with the president and the president didn't like it but he felt forced to do so with these sequestered cuts if they couldn't come up with other forms of cuts by that commission that no one even remembers anymore. and so this is where we are. this is what the republicans agreed to lock themselves into, and all along from the very beginning the president said i'll be happy to get rid of these sequestered cuts if you give a little on tax revenues. if you do something with loopholes or raise more of the rates on the well to do, and they just keep saying no, no,
no, no, no. so they're stuck with the deal they made, and mitch mcconnell was at this, too. so they can try to pin this on the president, but really i think they're going to fail to do that and we'll see where the public goes when the planes stop flying. >> i think david makes an important point. we need to remember this idea was, okay, we are going to jump over the cliff, if you will, together and create this sequester. it's going to be so much pain for both sides it's going to mean we're going to come back to the table and we're going to do our jobs, and guess what? even when we have to threaten ourselves, they can't seem to come back to the table and do their jobs. >> what about this idea, karen, that speaker boehner is suggesting it's all the president's idea. >> and now that's what they're trying to do. they believe that essentially americans are so frustrated with washington that if they just blame it on the president, that what americans will see it's just not working, and they think that the president will lose some, you know, some of the standing in the polls. what i think they don't
understand, a couple things, number one, he's got more room to go than they do. they're in single digits at this point. i think americans very much understand. they forget all the polling that shows americans understand who it is who is not cooperating. it's the republicans. and, frankly, it was very smart of the president to do this event because yet again, here we have him as we're approaching this deadline saying come on, guys, let's do something else, i'm ready to talk. so again i think that amplifies for the american people who is really trying to work on a solution. >> yeah. david? >> if you look at bowles/simpson as the mushy middle ground between both sides and they put out a revised version of their plan this morning, it's still a lot closer to what the president has been willing to do than what the republicans have been willing to do. it entails entitlement cuts, some of which he's been opposed to, some of which he says he would consider, but it talks about raising revenues by closing loopholes. the republicans have said all
along, no revenues, i don't care how do you it. so he is still closer to the theoretical middle whether we like that middle or not than the republicans are, and i think that gives him more standing to win this silly blame game that we're left with rather than really doing the work of washington. >> karen, listen for a moment to what mcconnell said. he said these cuts are an unnecessary choice by the president. here is what congressman steve stockman, who, of course, brought the great ted nugent to the state of the union. he tweeted this, under sequester obama administration picks what gets cut. now, again, that's totally untrue. >> it's absolutely incorrect, untrue, no way. making that up out of whole cloth. >> right. >> absolutely. but as we know, the gop has not really been one to care too much about the facts. they've been playing fast and loose. this is not president obama's sequester. again, this is a deal that both sides said they were going to link themselves together on to try to force an agreement.
and, again, now they're trying to say it's about the president, and the other criticism that, oh, he'd rather be out campaigning, you know, obviously they know that the more the president talks past them and directly to the american people, the more heat is on them to actually get back to the table and stop protecting big oil and the gas companies, which is one of the big loopholes that the president is looking at. instead of taking that from medicare and medicaid and the people who need it the most, right? which they're saying they just refuse outright to do. >> okay. >> and they'd rather be on recess. >> of course. they love being on holiday. >> and we don't give the president credit for the $2.4 trillion he's already done. >> president played golf this weekend but then he came back to work. >> he did come back to work. david and karen, and david first, how does this situation resolve itself? i mean, do we literally hit march the 1st, suffer all kinds of problems in terms of teacher layoffs, security staff on
furlough, i don't know, air-traffic control falls apart. what happens? >> yeah, that's about right. i think you got it. very apocalyptic march 1st. it won't be the mayan apocalypse but -- >> may feel like it. >> but, remember, this is not the end of it. we then have the continuing resolution about funding the government for the rest of the year. >> we do. >> we have the debt ceiling again. >> we do. >> i think the president is out there saying i'm trying to put these guys in the corner because these other fights are coming up which will have to be resolved just as well otherwise we have further government shutdowns and perhaps financial crisis and a meltdown. so this is all about setting up those other fights. i'd be shocked if they could come up with any sort of compromise or deal in the next week particularly when the house republicans are not here. >> of course. and, karen, the president said this is pain imposed by partisan recklessness. >> absolutely. >> this was some of the harshest rhetoric the president has ever offered republicans, isn't it 1234. >> it is. i think you're going to continue to hear that harsh rhetoric as we approach this deadline to
make it very clear whose fault it is because this is a manufactured crisis. you have heard him say that a number of times. you're going to continue to hear that. i think they really want to make sure people know this can be avoided absolutely. and i think david is exactly right. unfortunately there are all these calculations going on about we've got march 28th and we can hedge it for a couple weeks, but if you're sitting out in lima, ohio, or cleveland that's not what you care about. you want your government to do its job. >> that would be nice, wouldn't it? >> wouldn't it? >> karen finney and david corn. thank you. david, before we go i want to say warmest congratulations to you. david corn is one of the recipients of this year's george polk awards in journalism, one of the highest honors in our profession. david won for uncovering the new infamous mitt romney 47% tape. he will very soon be knighted by the british government but for the moment he receives the george polk award. congrats, david. >> thank you, martin. no sirs yet. >> coming up, troubling new details about the mental health of adam lanza and the glimmer of
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the president continues to press lawmakers on capitol hill for meaningful, common sense curbs against gun violence and there are new signs today that resistance at least in some quarters may be beginning to crack. the new york times reports that while some pro gun senators remain too frightened of the nra to support a ban on assault weapons, there are a few who may be willing to back restrictions on high capacity ammunition clips. this would apply to the 15 and 30-round magazines that we use during the massacre of children at sandy hook elementary school.
adam lanza is the subject of a front line documentary on pbs tonight. according to reporters, police investigators found thousands of dollars worth of graphically violent video games in the lanza household. >> i think he did what he knew how to do. graphically violent video games don't make you turn into violence if that's not your predisposition. but this kid had a lot going on. >> let's bring in msnbc contributor ari melber, correspondent for "the nation" and msnbc contributor goldie taylor, managing editor of the goldie taylor project. good afternoon to both of you. ari, we're learning more from these reports of a darkly obsessive behavior, possibly inspired by other mass shooters on the part of adam hahn lanza, including the suggestion that anders breivik may had have some
influence. how do we focus on improving the provision of mental health services at the same time as addressing things like high capacity magazines? because it seems to me as though the mental health component has kind of been lost in the discussion more recently. >> i think it has been somewhat lost and it goes all the way back to the reagan era when you had serious cuts to the bone on a lot of domestic medical spending and people who were once deemed not fit for being out on the streets were released. >> this is when psychiatric institutions were basically closed and many of these individuals were just literally left to walk the streets. >> exactly. now mr. lanza's case doesn't steam directly from that period but as a policy matter that's where we're coming out of, those serious cuts, and today we're talking about other cuts to domestic spending, veterans health, medical spending. i think the first thing you have to do is link it in a very serious substantive way to the fact that the government is going to have to spend money whether you look at the right and they want to talk about
police in schools or what the left has been talking more about, which is both comprehensive gun regulation and medical spending, but no matter where you end up, it's not going to be by cutting government to the bone. >> right. goldie, moments before this broadcast vice president biden kicked off a town hall meeting on facebook and he mentioned the mental health issue. take a listen, goldie. >> mental health aspect of this issue, parents who have children and/or people who need help and they know they need some help are often unable to get it because it's either not affordable or not available to them, and there is a probability that some of the god-awful things we've seen could be avoided. jo goldie, don't you think that mental health is actually as critical to the fixing of gun violence as anything that we might do with regard to assault weapon bans or, indeed, controlling or reducing the number in a magazine clip? >> you know, i have always said that, yes, it is about the
pervasive nature of the weapon you, but it's also the condition of the human mind who has it in hand. so, yes, mental health is a very important component. in lanza's case his mother had a plethora of resources to help him. i understand while he was in high school he had a full complement of counsellors and other people walking him through his high school years. so he was one of those people who did receive care, but what he did not receive was some responsibility at home such as keeping a gun out of his hands and him out of that kind of harm's way. i think that's where the breakdown is here. but absolutely we've got to close the loophole in terms of reporting. people who are adjudicated to be mentally ill, that should be reported to the states and then those states should be able to check that in the instant background check and not allow weapons to be sold. so that loophole absolutely has to be closed. >> ari, you're a lawyer, and some lawmakers are still considering the president's
proposals. there's the possibility of breaking the proposals up in some way into smaller chunks. now, i see them as separate, says senator angus king. he's the independent of maine. it's the difference between appearance and functionality. high capacity magazines have contributed to a lot of these tragedies. do you think it would be a better idea to say -- have a single bill that addressed high capacity magazines and then to do something else in relation to other matters of gun legislation? >> it's a tough question. i think generally what we see is you can get more done when you break things up, especially in this obstructionist environment. it is hard to move big legislation. it's hard to move a budget. >> yes. >> it's hard to move anything. so i can understand the appeal to that. but i do go back to what the president said in the moving moments in the state of the union which is that the people hurt by these tragedies deserve a vote, and so whether it is one package or a bunch of individual statutory fixes, there should be
an up or down vote in both houses of congress on every issue. in the house we have the problem of leading from behind. a speaker of the house, an important job, in line for the presidency, but we have john boehner announcing that he doesn't think his job is to do anything or lead on anything or pass anything until the senate -- i guess that's news to republicans who want a strong leader, it seems weak to me on this issue and others. and then in the senate, the highest obstruction rate, closure votes on the filibuster, of any presidency in american history. so i hope the president gets back out on the stump, out on the road -- >> you're pushing for the whole lot. >> it's clear if you're a vote counter, it's clear they probably don't today have the votes on an assault weapons ban or anything to extend what senator feinstein had done previously but, yes, that should be voted on. not a cloture vote.
the people who vote no on seven or eight or nine out of ten eventually that's going to help get some of the other things through. that's my view in the senate. >> goldie? >> you know, i think that if the feinstein piece of legislation passes and heads to the house, it is dos. at the end of the day we're going to get some small incremental change out of it. we may get universal background checks but an assault weapons ban will not pass this house of representatives. high magazine restriction -- restriction of high capacity magazines will also not pass this house of representatives. but we look at the case of jared lautner in arizona. he had to stop and reload, and that's when he was stopped. you know, what could have happened if adam lanza had to stop and reload? and so absolutely high capacity magazines ought to be on the table. unfortunately with this congress, it is not. >> that's a terribly depressing thought. ari melber and goldie taylor, thank you both. coming up, it's another bus tour for the tea party as they attempt to hit cruise control. stay with us.
>> the sad reality right now is the republicans don't have any power, and in addition to that, they are involved in a circular firing squad right now. they're shooting each other. they're shooting at me. they're shooting at tea parties. they're shooting -- tea parties are shooting at the republican establishment. [ jackie ] it's just so frustrating... ♪ the middle of this special moment and i need to run off to the bathroom. ♪ i'm fed up with always having to put my bladder's needs ahead of my daughter. ♪ so today, i'm finally talking to my doctor about overactive bladder symptoms. [ female announcer ] know that gotta go feeling? ask your doctor about prescription toviaz. one toviaz pill a day significantly reduces sudden urges and accidents, for 24 hours.
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such is their appreciation for his rap bid bravado, they have decided to launch a bus tour confident they could attract more latino voters. quote, we have been trying to do a bus tour that would focus on communities that we don't normally talk to said co-founder of the tea party express sal russo. a worth ambition, indeed, and an outreach strategy that might work so long as they don't employ the methods of their blustering star. >> anybody here of a pocket tweet? if anybody has an iphone 5, the keys are small. with the spark miles card from capital one, bjorn earns unlimited rewards for his small business. take these bags to room 12 please. [ garth ] bjorn's small business earns double miles on every purchase every day. produce delivery. [ bjorn ] just put it on my spark card. [ garth ] why settle for less? ahh, oh!
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>> president obama celebrated this weekend by playing golf with tiger woods. >> this is our president playing go golf. >> who would you rather play golf with? >> this is the biggest nonstory the media have created. >> the president has given 591 interviews. >> since the kardashian weddings. >> you know you have a good marriage when you say, sure, honey, go have a guy's weekend with tiger woods. >> this is my mid-life crisis, the bangs. >> i absolutely failed in my personal life and marriage. one place i didn't fail was with the tax party. >> the republican party has a branding issue. >> anybody hear of a pocket tweet? >> guess who it is? it's your butt. >> if anyone has an iphone 5, the keys are small. >> hey, butt. >> last time i was drunk was my bachelor party. >> since fox news went on the air, republicans have lost four out of five. >> please, keep doing what you're doing. >> who are you done with?
>> establishment republicans. >> the republicans don't have any power. >> i know that republicans have proposed some ideas, too. so far at least the ideas that the republicans have proposed asks nothing of the wealthiest americans. >> they are a super bowl team that we ought to respect deeply, and we are currently a midlevel college team. >> the circular firing squad. they're shooting at me, at tea parties. >> thank you. >> two words, herman cain. >> oh, good god. >> more we examine the quality of the candidates the more likely we end up with fewer christine o'donnells and fewer rand pauls. >> i'd support rand paul. >> how about marco rubio? >> the republicans will become less and less relevant as every day that goes by. they're becoming, if they are not already, the whig party. >> let's get to our panel now. joining us is msnbc contributor joy reid and dana milbank, political columnist for "the washington post." thank you both. so, joy, none other than glenn
beck says the republican party is becoming less and less relevant, and i guess if anyone would know, he would. >> yes, he would. they're turning to glenn beck to help them dig themselves out of a hole. that is a very deep hole. when glenn beck thinks you're irrelevant, you're in deep, deep trouble. it's interesting because glenn beck's whole sort of fix for the republican party and i think it was instructive the way he said it, because he does represent a big chunk of their base. he said the problem with the party is not what we in the media say it is, that they're too far right, it's that they're too moderate. they're trying to moderate themselves. they're trying to damp down their conservatism and if they'd be true conservatives they wouldn't have any problems anymore. >> excellent advice. dana, glenn beck is actually the person that some conservatives blame for burying the republican party. our own joe scarborough, for example. take a listen. >> i don't really think it's as much about the positions that we've taken as it is over the past four years calling the president a racist, saying he hates all white people as glenn
beck has done. since rush limbaugh went on the air and became a national figure, republicans have lost five out of the last six presidential elections in the popular vote. >> is it possible, dana, perhaps, just possible, that by spewing hatred and racist invective, mr. rush and mr. limbaugh -- mr. beck are actually hurting republicans more than they think they've been helping them? >> well, that may be, martin, but it strikes me as a little bit toot convenient here because where would rush limbaugh be and glenn beck be if it weren't for republican officials and leaders raising them up in prominence, giving them interviews, reacting to them? they in many ways created their own monsters in the republican party, so now it would be a little -- look, joe scarborough
has been on both sides. he's been in the media and he's been a congressman, so he can speak with some authority on it. but i would just be a little bit skeptical that it's not the republican officials who have caused their own problems. >> okay. well, joy, we're hearing now there's been this criticism of rush limbaugh and so on on fox news and now fox news in answering that critique has appointed herman cain as one of their employed contributors. >> well, that will fix everything. problem solved. >> obviously he had a few problems remembering where the conflict was in libya and economically in terms of his nine-nine-nine plan but he was good on crocodiles in the moat on immigration. he can contribute. >> i don't think the republican party understands its core problem. fok ne fox news is at the center of the
crisis. the republican politicians made their own problems but their enter taeners have been their biggest villains because i'm not sure they want republicans to win. they do a lot better ratingswise when somebody like president obama is in there they can beat up on. so the people like risch limbaugh don't necessarily want. to win. fox news needs to grow their audience. they can't rely on average age 80 people sitting at home wondering if barack obama and the black helicopters are coming. that's not a growth strategy for the future. the idea you can take herman cain and put him on and that will somehow bring you diversity, i think it's a problem with the way that republicans by and large see minorities. they think if you just dangle the brown or the black face in front, if you get rubio or ted cruz -- >> throw rubio at the problem. >> just their very brownness will bring black and brown people to you.
they have to get to know more people of color so they can learn. >> while republicans continue in their search for a new identity, it appears that the president has the press under his thumb. at least that's what mike allen and jim van dehigh right in sol litco. they say he is a master at limiting, shaping, and manipulating media coverage of himself and his white house. the balance of power is tipped unmistakably toward the government. this is an arguably dangerous development. do you agree with this, dana, because with all due respect it seemed like you could write a similar if not the same story about any white house. >> well, i think that's right, martin. i don't think this is -- it's maybe this president has been a little better by a matter of degree in terms of manipulating the press but this has been going on for a long time. for more than a generation. >> manipulating the press? this is a president who is described on every other day by certain so-called news organizations as a muslim from kenya. i mean, as an ardent european
socialist. as a man who's actually into creating some kind of marxist government in america. what are we talking about? what kind of control has he got over the media? >> i wouldn't say he's been successful at manipulating all aspects of the media. i think we're talking about the mainstream media. what i was say something the media have really splintered. okay, so you're obviously not going to control what fox news said. on the other hand, what he is able to do now through social media, through facebook town halls, through organizing for america is he has an alternative to going around the filter. george w. bush often talked about the filter. they're getting better at this. i don't think the question of whether he took the press pool with him when he went to play golf is tiger woods is particularly an issue. i'd love to see him out there taking more questions from the press, but that's the perennial win ge of the press corps. >> dana references george bush
and in 2005 in "the new york times" this is what it says. under the bush administration the federal government has aggressively used a well-established tool of public relations, the prepackaged, ready to serve news report. i mean, that's what they're accusing this president of. >> well, yeah. we did have under president george w. bush, they used "the new york times" and "washington post" to sell a war that was unnecessary. there was wiretapping of the american people. we had prepackaged news releases that would come fait accompli to news organizations expecting them to go on air. >> which they did. >> giving contracts to columnists. he did give nifty nicknames to members of the press corps. >> whether he plays golf or not is immaterial. coming up, we'll head to the white house where jay carney certainly met with the press earlier this afternoon.
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he hit the ball well and got an amazing touch. he can certainly chip and putt. if he ever spent -- after these four years if he spends more time playing the game of golf, i'm sure he can get to where he's a pretty good stick. >> that was none other than tiger woods with high praise for the president's golf game after the two played a round as partners over the weekend. nbc news white house correspondent kristin welker is live for us at the white house. and kristin, we understand the president and tiger woods went into the clubhouse as winners of that round. is that right? >> reporter: well, that is what we're hearing. it's strategic of the president to have tiger on his team. >> a good idea. >> that's right. they were playing against the owner of the floridian, the golf resort where they were playing and the astros and ron kirk, u.s. trade representative. we didn't get a real lead out of
what happened on the course but a golf digest reporter says that president obama said to tiger that he's glad that his game has improved. so it sounds like a fun afternoon was had by all. >> kristin, to your point you actually asked jay carney yourself about the so-called limited access that you and your colleagues had to the president. what was the answer that jay carney gave you and were you satisfied? >> reporter: well, martin, jay basically said that, look, they handled this weekend like they handle all weekends of golf, which is to sort of read out who the president is playing with after the fact. i made the point it's not just about a game of golf, not just about getting a picture of the president playing with tiger woods. there have been other meetings that have been unannounced here at the white house and it's really more about the broader issue of access. i can tell you that jay got a lot of questions about this today, martin. he, when asked, is the white house going to do anything differently, didn't signal that they would do anything differently, but it is clear that he is aware of the issue
and they certainly did have to answer a lot of questions about it today. >> let's move from restricting information to actually suggestively leaking it because the issue of the president's backup plan on immigration as we know appeared in "usa today." there were questions to jay carney about that. and mr.carnew sa-- said that th president will not wait forever. >> reporter: that's right. we saw a draft portion -- draft proposal of that which was leaked to "usa today" over the weekend and it sort of led to some ruffled feathers on the hill. marco rubio saying that plan would be dead on arrival if it were presented to congress. john mccain accusing the white house of intentionally leaking that draft proposal. that's an assertion the white house has pushed back against. this is a delicate dance,
martin, and this sort of ruffled feathers could give someone like marco rubio some cover to spar publicly with the president but then to continue to work on immigration reform behind the scenes and not necessarily have to own this as president obama's immigration reform proposal if, in fact, they do come up with something. i think what's significant is that after this weekend and that leaked draft proposal, no one walked away from the table. by all accounts everyone is still moving forward on immigration reform. of course, it's still an uphill battle because lawmakers are divided on some of the key issues. >> kristin, thank you. coming up, herman cain was actually right about something. seriously. stay with us. so you say men are superior drivers? yeah. then how'd i get this... [ voice of dennis ] ...safe driving bonus check? every six months without an accident, allstate sends a check.
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nine, nine, nine. nine, nine, nine. nine, nine, nine. >> it's taken a while, but we may have finally found something that makes sense from the mouth of herman cain. it is the number nine. in his state of the union address, the president urged congress to raise the minimum page to $9 an hour. republicans immediately rejected this as a job killing exercise in big government. but once again it's their math that just doesn't add up. joining us now is former chief economic adviser to the vice president and senior fellow at the center on budget and policy priorities, the great jared bernstein. jared, okay, tell us. why is the number nine the right number at the right time when it comes to the minimum wage? >> because if you look at the history of minimum wage increases, they've always been in the kind of range that we're contemplating if we're talking about going from the current federal level of $7.25 to $9 in
2015. the chart that you're showing there is one that i made over the weekend. i don't know what you do for fun on the weekends, but i like to take the alog rhythm of minute pages -- thanks for allowing me to talk about log rhythms on television. if there are children questioning whether you use your math in real life, sometimes you do. this shows that historically percentage changes in minimum wage increases have all been fairly much in the same change and that range right now would take us to about $9 an hour. that's important because at that range you don't see the kind of job loss effects that opponents predict. >> okay. jared, well, you have just offered us some mathematical science. here is what republicans think of raising the minimum wage. take a listen. >> you raise the price of employment, guess what happens? you get less of it. >> i want people to make a lot more than $9. $9 is not enough. the problem is that if you can't
do that by mandating it in the minimum wage laws. >> he spoke of workers minimum wages instead of their maximum potential. >> i think it's inflationary. i think it actually is counterproductive in many ways. you end up costing jobs from people who are the bottom rung of the economic ladder. >> here we have republicans say the diametric opposite of what you just asserted. respond to that. >> there is a long, long history of research on this question, but, yes, you do have to be willing to entertain evidence to understand that research. what it shows is that increases in the minimum wage of the magnitude we're con templating, again, going from $7.25 to $9 over a couple years, have historically been associated not with job loss effects of the type you just heard, but with actually doing what they're supposed to do, which is returning low wage workers a bit more of the economic growth that has done an end run around them for the last few decades. i mean, we have raised the
federal minimum wage dozens of times. we have 19 states with their own minimum wages. this provides something rare in economics, a natural experiment where we can investigate the impact of these increases. it's not to say that a minimum wage increase never results in someone losing a job or getting fewer hours -- >> no one is suggesting that. >> right. the question is are the net benefits positive for low wage workers? and the evidence is that they are hugely so, exactly the opposite of all the rhetoric you just heard. >> that's one thing. but, jared, the average salary of someone on the minimum wage is currently about $14,500, which is below the poverty line. we're talking about working poverty line. raising it to $9 would mean an increase of about $3,500. now, that may not seem a lot to people like us, but in reality that is a massive difference in percentage and proportional terms to the income of someone currently on the minimum wage.
>> that's absolutely right. and, you know, we can actually get away from the percentages and think about what this means to people. the president said in the state of the union, that's the difference between the food bank and the grocery. look, if you provide someone at that level of income with another few thousand dollars a year, it really does mean that perhaps they can get those groceries they need, that they can perhaps provide something for their kids that they otherwise couldn't, and that they don't necessarily have to be so dependent on other government policies that would help them, that their actual wage that they can draw from the job market is more commensurate with a fair wage, something they themselves are contributing to the economy's growth. >> jared bernstein, i and our audience are delighted you spend your weekends working on this because you just presented the skints of the minimum wage. i wish paul ryan was listening.
>> thank you, martin. >> we'll be right back to "clear the air." [ male announcer ] research suggests cell health plays a key role throughout our lives. one a day men's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for men's health concerns as we age. it has 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day men's 50+.
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remember, aflac will give him cash to help cover his rent, car payments and keep everything as normal as possible. i see lunch. [ monitor beeping ] let's move on. [ male announcer ] find out what a hospital stay could really cost you at aflac.com. it's time now to clear the air. and as the president has repeatedly said, the debate over gun safety must include a discussion of psychiatric illness. but, unfortunately, of all the ailments common to men and women, mental illness remains one of the most stigmatized, and this may explain why one medic by the name of dr. drew pinsky decided to host a television program he be titled celebrity rehab with dr. drew. the show attempted to follow individuals who would undergo a period of intensive therapy for conditions as wide ranging as drug addiction to anxiety neurosis. sadly, with the news of mindy mccready's suicide, there have
now been five premature deaths in the past two years of individuals who have appeared on dr. pinsky's program. of course, this isn't necessarily a reflection on him, but it does say something about the way mental illness is now being addressed. it seems that we're happy to be voyeurs of reality television, but we're less interested in spending money on the most effective treatment programs and targeting those in need. for example, since the recession of 2008, individual states have slashed their mental health care budgets by almost $2 billion. with sarah palin's home state of alaska cutting almost 35% of its provision for psychiatric illness. in fact, 90 million americans live now in areas where the federal government acknowledges a serious shortage of mental health professionals. and so we come to emerging stories about adam lanza, the sick young man who murdered those children and teachers at sandy hook elementary school.
according to a couple local newspaper reporters, adam lanza may have been obsessed with previous mass shootings both here and abroad. according to the very latest statistics, about 1 in 4 of the american population is afflicted by one or more mental disorder. and while the overwhelming majority will never express their illness through an episode of gun violence, it's also abundantly clear that if we don't invest in our mental health services, then we're unlikely to pick up on any of those who may be minded to do the unthinkable. what we need to decide as a culture is whether we prefer reality television to real action. of course, providing psychiatric help costs money. but if it meant the difference between your child or mine facing a crazed gunman in a school classroom armed with a semiautomatic assault weapon, i