tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC February 20, 2013 7:00pm-8:00pm EST
will be the guest of honor. you can't make it up. the more i hear the gop talking about change, the more i really know it remains the same. thanks for watching. i'm al sharpton. "hardball" starts right now. >> more of the right. let's play "hardball" ♪ ♪ >> listen, they arise from the last row of the tea party. their voices reach up to the highest levels of the gop. the republican party, a long time ago, the prudence and fiscal responsibility is now the
war party, the stop the government party here at home. >> watch tonight as someone who's pandered is attacked op openly, ir rev rantly, disgustingly. >> i told you tmd come to this. now we've got the proof on camera. they listen only to the loudest, angriest person in the back row. mitch mcconnell, what matters to the republican far right now are the few who dare to be even further right. now it's come to this, the huffington post and washington bureau chief from mother jones. both are msnbc political analysts. the 2013 version took on his constituents with anti-immigr t anti-immigrant, bill defense talk. here's his exchange with angry
right wing tea partiers. >> why didn't the army go down there and stop them? because the only thing that stops them, i'm afraid to say and it's too damn bad, but is a gun. that's all that will stop them. >> the border is 2,000 miles long, sir. i don't know how many troopings and army people you think would have been required. i'll give you expert information that says probably you're talking 2 million soldiers. there are people who have been here illegally for 50 years. or 40 years. am i telling them to be guest workers? no, you can't do that. >> i guess those people aren't judeao christians. i rarely brag on this show. but i've been saying for a long time is the angriest guy we just saw in the last row of the latest tea party meeting.
>> john mccain did what he could to get reelected. and now he's confronting his old self as he argue ts with the guy he was a few year as i go. and john mccain has never been good for hiding his anger or contempt for people he considers in his way. >> he said to build that dang fence. >> joan mccain is the perfect expression, the perfect embodiment of the kind of schizophrenia. >> he's also a guy who wants to get deals done.
>> he can't do that. he's in many ways, an admirable senator. let's take a look at je krkkel hyde here. he once committed the crime of working with ted kennedy. watch this. >> they are going to be on medicare, welfare and food stamps. and you know it. >> again, sir, you're not telling these people the truth. they mow our lawns, they care for our babies. >> you're a senator with the
federal government and you're doing nothing about it. you said build a dang fence. where's the fence? >> in case you missed it, i showed you -- >> that's not a fence. >> it's not a fence? it's a banana. we're putting up a banana with about $600 million worth of appropriations. sir, you can -- you're entitled to your opinion. you're not entitled to your facts. the facts are that we have made significant improvements. >> you're stealing from everybody in this audience right here. you're taking away from their social security to give it to a dependent class of people. >> this is an orwellian experience. i've had enough. you've had enough. >> to refresh your memory on this dang fence talk. this is what he said in an ad when he went to the far right and was challenged by right wing former congressman j.d. hayworth and he had to hopscotch past him to the right. let's watch. >> human smuggling, home invasions, murder.
>> we're outmanned. of all the illegals in america, more than half come through arizona. >> have we got the right plan? >> the plan is perfect. you bring troops, state, county and local law enforcement together. >> and complete the dang fence. >> it will work this time. senator, you're one of us. >> well, one of us is dangerous here because when you refer to people, i know we have to get the lingo right in the nicest way of undocumented workers. somewhere between undocumented workers and aliens or illegals is illegal immigrants. when you call them illegals, you're basically saying they're not anything connected to us. >> it's dehumanizing. if they're illegals they don't deserve citizenship -- >> they're not people. so he was playing their game. >> he was playing footsie all the way in 2010. he refused to call himself a maverick. he ran from the john mccain of 2008 and 2000 and 1996. and now he's kind of in a corner. >> he's the guy to get off my lawn, mr. wilson in dennis the menace? >> they have been many john mccains.
>> which one do you like? >> david and i have probably covered most of them. >> which one do you like? >> 2000 was mccain at his best. >> he was up against w. >> he was up against w., which brought out the best of his reformist instincts and the best -- the best side of his anti-establishment instincts and he was terrific. >> best town meeting we ever had back in those days, those wonderful big town meetings was auburn. >> well, new hampshire, chris, i remember one in new hampshire, a thousand people showed up and they were a thousand reasonable people. >> yes. >> that because bush was on one extreme and other people around there. that was the mccain we liked. >> you said something usually brilliant by you, which is that he personified the schizoid nature of the republican party. he tries to be part of the governing of the united states. he gets paid to be a senator and to get something done, to pass bills, to legislate, to refine, to improve the government, the country.
and yet the other part is this other guy, this enraged person who wants to at least pretend he doesn't believe in government. >> well, on a simple level, he needed to be that other guy in order to be able to get back in the room to make deals as this guy. he thinks people will forget the fact that he was that other guy. well, the people at the meeting don't forget that. >> why is he calling these meetings? >> that's a very good question. >> i have a theory. i think he's trying to ward off a real primary challenge next time because he wants to be a senator for life, which is fine for me. but that's what he wants to do. >> i don't think there will be a next time for him. >> you don't think he'll run again? >> i think there have been too many john mccains. he'll lose to a real right candidate or real reasonable democrat. >> claude pepper. some of these guys learn how to change. >> those are old days. he can't change fast enough. >> here he is. he didn't take to a reporter's question about the audience reception. here he is plowing into in the same mood we saw him with the people with reporters. >> oh, sure. people are people unhappy.
most of the people in here are happy. most of the people in here agree with me. most of the people agree that as was carried recently, 70% of the american people believe there should be a path to citizenship as long as they pay a fine, pay backs taxes, get in line behind everybody else. >> would you say 70% of the people in the room agree? >> sure, absolutely. what's your problem? >> i don't have a problem. >> yeah, you to do because you keep somehow thinking that this was not a typical town hall meeting. it is. >> i've been to many meetings. this felt like -- >> i'm glad to know you're an expert. i'm the one going to the town hall meetings and we have lots of them and they're very vigorous and that's what they're supposed to be. >> what's that about? you're an expert. he didn't say he was an expert,
he just said i've been coming to these town meetings. >> all i can say is that mccain has gone in and out of love with the press corps as they have with him. >> did you ever put up with that lip? >> well, he used to like to -- but in a good-natured way. i mean i think overall he's become a meaner person than he was 12 or nine years ago. >> let's talk a bigger question rather than just the personality traits of this fellow and different people that are sometimes in the same body. i want you to look at a montage as we call it. this isn't the first time an audience has shown its right wing features, it's anger against in this case illegal immigrants. when all of a sudden you see by maude, these people really are haters. let's take a look at it. these are from the debates this past year. >> in 2010 when i was deployed to iraq. i had to lie about who i was because i'm a gay soldier. i didn't want to lose my job. my question is under one of your presidencies, do you intend to circumventing the progress that has been made for gay and lesbian soldiers in the military? >> your state has executed 234 death row inmates, more than any other governor in modern times.
[ applause ] have you struggled to sleep at night with the idea that any one of those might have been innocent? >> no, sir, i have never struggled with that at all. >> that's what freedom is all about, taking your own risk. this whole idea that you have to prepare and take care of everybody -- [ applause ] >> but congressman, are you saying that society should just let him die? >> well, there you have in three different cases, a gay soldier fighting for this country overseas and you have the question of people, lots of -- dozens and dozens, hundreds of people being executed in texas. every time the word is "execute" or to bash a gay soldier or let someone down because they don't have health insurance, it is so viciously right wing. >> the trick is, and the trick on both extremes of american politics, especially conservatives and republicans
over the last 50 years, is to turn that resentment and that fear and that anger to productive purposes. to channel it into a tax cut program or channel it into legislation to drain the swamp which ronald reagan was supposedly going to do. reagan had the ability to take the energy of that resentment and bring it into the mainstream. the problem that the republicans have now is that they have this sort of boiling cauldron down there and they have nowhere -- they have no people able to channel it. >> but there's a difference between resentment and hatred. it may be a fine line in politics but i think they moved from resentment to hatred. >> when mccain isn't right wing enough, you know we have problems. >> without any leaders to contain it, that's the way it's going to be. >> congratulations on your program rachel introduced and explained, that whole story of your book, it's an amazing book. also had a huge audience. people do care about the dishonesty about the war in iraq. they really do care. thank you, howard and david.
guess who has the high ground again in his battle with republicans? the latest debate in washington is going just the way the democrats hoped it would. republicans defending the wealthy again. president obama out there for the middle class. how can it be so good? also how much have we heard from republicans since the election about how they know they need to change? don't worry, we got the message they keep telling us. check out the names of the next month's conservative political caucus. palin, lapierre, santorum, newt. i could go on with all these names. later, it feels a bit like the new improved edsall, doesn't it? how the media machine turned a tongue in cheek joke by a reporter into a deliberately misleading story that chuck hagel talked to a nonexistent group called friends of hamas. never happened. no such group. let me finish with a new bipartisan push for marriage equality. this is "hardball," the place for politics. [ kitt ] you know what's impressive?
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welcome back to "hardball." the debate over spending and cutting is going just the way president obama planned apparently. he's out there every day making the case he's looking out for the middle class while the republicans are just as stubbornly looking out for the wealthy. in his automatic across the board cuts march 1st the president is taking advantage of
the power of his office. he's doing interviews with eight local tv anchors. most of these markets include a significant defense presence, they're near bases, an industry that could be hit hard if a sequester goes into effect of here's a click from nbc oklahoma city affiliate kfor. let's listen. >> we've got some automatic spending cuts coming up in nine days that will lay off hundreds of thousands of folks or furlough hundreds of thousands of folks all across the country. they're not necessary. they'll hurt our economy. they'll raise the unemployment rate. and the reason is because congress has not been able to compromise on a deficit reduction package that's more sensible. >> yesterday the president insisted sudden across-the-board spending cuts would be
unnecessary and damaging and he made sure that first responders were there to punctuate the message. let's watch and listen. >> border patrol agents will see their hours reduced. fbi agents will be furloughed. federal prosecutors will have to close cases and let criminals go. air traffic controllers and airport security will see cutbacks, which means more delays at airports across the country. thousands of teachers and educators will be laid off. >> and keeping up the drum beat, house minority leader nancy pelosi will hold hearings on how middle class families could be hurt by the spending cuts that could kick in march 1st. joining me is u.s. congressman adam schiff of california. i was so impressed by the way you explained all of this this morning on msnbc. i'd like you to do it again. your take on what this fight is about coming up march 1st, sir. >> well, the fight is largely a fight within the gop.
you talked earlier about the schizophrenia within some of the gop members. that is most manifest in the house. they really have two minds. you've got the tea party contingent that wants to tear down government that ran on a platform of tearing down and never made the transition of being for anything. right now they're driving the train. they want the sequester to go into effect. they want it to go into effect because they want to show that they're serious about this and they feel that's their mandate. at the same time, it's going to be enormously destructive to the economy. we are poised to make a recovery, and if just the -- if the congress could get out of the way and stop manufacturing these crises month after month, i think we would have a full recovery. but what the president has proposed, which is a reasonable compromise, that's part spending cuts, part revenues is being rejected by the house of representatives' leadership and we are where we are. >> two major points i heard there at the beginning by the congressman. john, i want you to respond. first of all, the who. it is the hard right. you talk to people at the white house and they say this president, whatever you think of the politics, doesn't know who
to talk to on the hill. there is no boehner, he's just a front man. eric kantor has his finger in the air trying to figure out which way the wind is blowing. how do you know who they are? are they hamas? >> they are not hamas. there's nobody that speaks with one voice for the house republicans. when there is a deal cut it's always mitch mcconnell and joe biden. >> who is obama talking to, the president? he has to send joe up to find somebody of like mind to talk to him? >> yeah, because he doesn't have relationships on the hill. whether that's his fault or their fault -- >> we agree on that, there's no connection. congressman, back to you. the what. what i found profound in what you said this morning is it's not -- sure, we're going to argue whether one party won 60/40 or lost 70/30 on who gets blamed. forget the blame game for a second. what's going on with the economy? i think the american people looking at the polling we got our hands are have become very demoralized ever since the election. they have been seeing shutdown talk, debt ceiling talk, this stupid named sequestration and
all they hear is trouble in the nation's capital. the inability of our own government which has been elected to do its job. i think it's hurting the economy. your thoughts. >> absolutely hurting the economy. what people want in business and family life is some stability. they want the ability to plan. they want to know what are my taxes going to be. they want to know, you know, am i going to have a job. am i going to be laid off. and all they want is some solidity to plan with. when we go through these crises, it's incredibly destructive. >> do you think the right wing people know when they're sitting in their chairs voting no, no, no, bringing one manufactured crisis to bear after another that they're just happy when they pick up the paper and say public confidence going down. that's good for our party. >> we know that grover norquist starving the beast of resources. now they're starving the beast of credibility. they're starving the beast of the federal government with any public confidence that it can actually solve problems. this is part of the destruction
of our federal government. they would be delighted if people lost confidence in the government and if they could further tear it down. a lot of people run for congress against the government. that's a tried tradition in american history. but usually once they have office and they have responsibility to govern, they find they have to be for something as well. but this crowd has never made the transition to being for something. >> but they take a salary, don't they? >> they take a salary -- >> where they work in the united states government, they're working for the government to function, at least, even if they vote against it. they do want a functioning government but now i get the feeling they don't. >> i think there was a little truth serum from the congressman. you campaign against the government as if it was the worst thing in the world and then you get there and you're supposed to change the stripes you showed to the voters. >> you're supposed to change policy to the advantage -- >> but all these guys are focused on their very narrow
constituencies. even within their districts, it's not -- >> what do you think about this result. in arizona we saw a very right wing crowd on immigration. when they pick up the paper and see the government is shutting down again and there's questions about whether we can move an aircraft carrier into the persian gulf if we need one, all kind of questions like that about security, do you think they're happy? >> i think for a lot of people it's great, the government is shutti down. when they go to get services from the va or people are crossing the border or -- >> or they get in an airplane. >> they care about -- >> how about getting in an airplane. >> it doesn't take very long for the public to really get this. >> congressman, i'm so impressed. thank you so much. you're a very eloquent spokesman for a very complicating situation, which i think gets worse every day. thank you so much for coming up. >> thank you. up next, how a right wing smear, and it was kind of a joke to begin with, against chuck hagel went viral. this is this thing that if you say something even sarcastically some whack job will put it on
the radio or on a website. next thing you know people are reacting to that reaction and it's become a frankenstein's monster. we'll show you how it works in a couple minutes. this is stirring and it's scary. it could involve you some day. this is "hardball," the place for politics. more than two years ago, the people of bp made a commitment to the gulf. and every day since, we've worked hard to keep it. today, the beaches and gulf are open for everyone to enjoy. we've shared what we've learned, so we can all produce energy more safely. bp's also committed to america. we support nearly two-hundred-fifty thousand jobs and invest more here than anywhere else. we're working to fuel america for generations to come. our commitment has never been stronger.
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back to "hardball." now the sideshow. how a sarcastic joke how a nonexistent terrorist organization morphs into a right wing attack on chuck hagel and whether or not we can trust him as defense secretary. three easy steps. step one, the sarcastic joke from daily news recorder dan friedman who says, quote, when rumors swirled that hagel received speaking fees from controversial organizations, i attempted to check them out. on february 6th i called a republican aide on capitol hill with a question. did hagel senate critics know of controversial groups that he had addressed. had he given a speech to, say, the junior league of hezbollah in france and what with friends of hamas? well, the names were so over the
top, so linked to terrorism in the middle east that it was clear i was talking hypothetically. no one could take seriously the idea that organizations with those names existed. well, step two, cue breitbart.com. one day after the joke, quote, secret hagel donor? white house spox ducks question on friends of hamas. so friends of hamas had spread and taken a turn for the serious. step three, others catch on. >> the problem with hagel is the people who he was giving the speeches for and the people who he's been colluding and aligning with over the years. there was a report that came out last week, not confirmed yet, but we're also not denying it very vigorously that one of the groups behind the speeches may have been an outfit called friends of hamas. >> let me bring up one piece of information that ben shapiro at breitbart put out today which is
one of the foreign funders behind senator hagel that he has not disclosed formally is something called friends of hamas. if that is in fact true, senator, would that lead you to vote against mr. hagel? >> you know, i saw that information today also and that is more and more concerning. with each day there are new things coming out. >> they call it information not yet confirmed. all the while acting on it as if it's real, making it real. well, a small sample of friends of hamas were in an uproar, bogus on bogus, that's what i have to say. friedman, the columnist, south dakota ben shapiro about where his friends of hamas information came from. he got this response. the story as reported is correct. whether the information i was given by the source is correct, i am not sure. so now we've come full circle. the breitbart reporter who started the brouhaha acknowledges that his story was a true report of something
false. got it? friends of hamas has no basis in reality. the whole thing was an example of the right wing crazy world. finally, there's someone else to add to karl rove's list of potential senate candidates who might just hurt the gop with moderate voters. failed alaska senate candidate joe miller is back. it's miller time again. politico reports today he's seriously considering another bid for the senate up in alaska, this time in 2014. miller lost in 2014 to lisa murkowski, a fellow republican who launched a successful write-in campaign after losing in the primary. in case you forgot what miller brings to the table, let's recall his inspiration for border control, east germany. >> east germany was very, very able to reduce the flow. now, obviously there are other things that were involved, but we have the capacity as a great nation to obviously secure our border. if east germany can do it, we can do it. >> they shot people on sight seeking freedom. what do you think of someone who thinks of communist east germany as an american role model for the 21st century? bring on miller if you like that thinking. up next, extreme makeover.
not so much. the speakers at the cpac conference are a blast from the past. sarah palin, the new kid on the block, alan west, newt gingrich, my, new people. guess the republicans didn't get the message in the election. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. low testosterone, you should know that axiron is here. the only underarm treatment for low t. that's right, the one you apply to the underarm. axiron is not for use in women or anyone younger than 18. axiron can transfer to others through direct contact. women, especially those who are or who may become pregnant, and children should avoid contact where axiron is applied as unexpected signs of puberty in children or changes in body hair or increased acne in women may occur. report these signs and symptoms to your doctor if they occur. tell your doctor about all medical conditions and medications. do not use if you have prostate or breast cancer. serious side effects could include increased risk of prostate cancer; worsening prostate symptoms; decreased sperm count; ankle, feet, or body swelling; enlarged or painful breasts; problems breathing while sleeping; and blood clots in the legs. common side effects include skin redness
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shlg shlgts. here's what's happening. admitted to fathering a son outside his marriage 30 years ago. . former congressman jesse jackson junior was in court earlier where he pleaded guilty to miss using campaign funds and spending it on lavish personal items. and in kansas city, authorities aren't certain whether all victims of a massive gas explosion are accounted for. now, back to "hardball." we're back.
2012 was a devastating blow to republicans, of course. since november the gop has admitted it must broaden its appeal to bring back women, minorities and younger voters. we all know this. in their first big meeting of conservatives this year coming up you'd expect to see some fresh faces to speak for all of america, not just rural white males. not so fast. the gop circus is coming to town. the conservative political action congress which is always held here in washington, the cpac, is bringing back the clown show. their scheduled speakers, you're not going to believe this. sarah palin. i know, attractive to many, but only on the far right, apparently. rand paul, who i am amazed by that he exists. newt gingrich, there's a fresh face. alan rich, rick santorum. don't forget wayne lapierre, the kid on the block. and even a curtain call for mitt romney. it doesn't look like the far right's grip on the gop is fading after all. john is a senior adviser to the santorum presidential committee, at least for the last one and roger simon is a pro here at political comments for politico. john, why the same old song, the
same old faces? >> well, you know, everybody is talking about this rebranding and they almost this is like money ball where we're supposed to get rid of all our players and bring new players in. the change in marketing terms is not rebranding, it's repositioning. what the republicans did wrong, it wasn't except for a few cases bad messengers, we didn't resonate with the hard-working people around this country. we fight too much for taxpayers for the wealthy, we look like we fight for loopholes for big corporations and we've lost our way fighting for average hard-working blue collar americans. and that's where we have to change. not the players per se. although there are new players like a tim scott from south carolina, which is a great new player for the republican party. >> i don't think he's off the contraception bandwagon, though, is he? i'm serious about this. if you say that he isn't going to talk about that anymore?
>> i will tell you this. if you listen -- what he is talking about more than anything else is that we've lost our way and fighting for hard-working, middle income americans. if you go back and look at the primaries where rick santorum won 11 states, tied two others, it was by galvanizing blue collar and lunch bucket republicans who felt that the rest of the republican party had left them and, frankly, they liked the idea of a blue collar guy from pittsburgh who was going to fight for them. >> i agree with that part. let me go to roger simon. the show business quality of sarah palin, when she gets up on a stage, i don't want to get into why it works, but it works. she's kinetic, exciting. she will bring the house down when she shows up there. i don't know what mitt romney -- nobody has asked for an encore from him. but this regular crowd of newt gingrich, who seems to be freddie kruger, he will never go away. >> what's the definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. this is what we're seeing at cpac.
>> i think they say that at alcoholics anonymous too. >> well, cpac is the warm, emotional, beating heart of the republican party. not necessarily the brains. i don't mean they're stupid, i mean they're not looking for cool intellectualism here. they are looking for people who will appeal to the emotional heart strings -- >> would they rather win with a mitt romney? >> they would rather lose with a purist than win with a pragmatist. >> go with that, john. a lot of liberal democrats enjoyed add lie stevenson because they had the awareness he's a lot smarter than ike, although i'm not sure he was. would you rather win or be right, far right? >> there's no reason we can't be both. look at the governors in 2010 where we ran about bringing taxes under control, about bringing spending under control. one of the speakers at cpac is scott walker, who's a star. you know, you can still be right -- >> i want to ask you about that.
how bad would conditions have to be in this country for us to elect someone of the far right as our president? not a governor of wisconsin, president of the united states. how bad would conditions have to be? we know how bad they were in '80 for reagan who came in who was right but not hard right. what would it take for a hard guy like santorum or palin or the rest of this crowd to get elected president of the united states. >> let's be honest, hard right is your sort of label that you're putting on this. >> well, i studied nate what's his name this morning. >> john kasich in ohio. all these people. >> corbett has a hard time getting re-elected. >> they all ran on very hard core principles of less spending, less taxes and creating jobs and more economic
freedom. that's what a lot of people wanting. that doesn't have to be considered a right wing message. and everybody thinks that we're only talking about social issues. we do have to talk more about fiscal issues. but particularly the ones that hit hard-working americans. >> why when you -- you seem like a reasonable guy and i agree with you about the lunch bucket guy. i root for that guy. i think joe biden does too from a different perspective. how can you say that sarah palin stands for the working class regular people? how can you say that they successfully got the message across if you're rick santorum. people think of rick santorum and think fantastic, overwhelmingly, rigid, orthodox, classic, pro-lifer who would like to go back and get rid of contraception as well. when they think of sarah palin, she got elected for a term of office and didn't know even complete it. that's what they think of. they don't think of these things you're talking about. >> chris, well let's set the record straight. rick santorum in no way supported getting rid of contraception, number one. >> he said he wanted that to be a big issue in the campaign.
you want to get the tape out? we'll show it tomorrow night. >> i'm not going to worry about whether it was contraception. the argument that he was making on contraception he did not wanting the president of the united states telling everybody that they had to sell it. to be honest with you, if you look at the economic policy of rick santorum, the number one issue was bringing back manufacturing to this country. something that this president said those jobs are lost forever. >> john -- john, i wish you were -- i hope you get the job as a speechwriter because that would be something i'd like to hear too. by the way, ed schultz and a lot of people would like to hear it. what's he talking about? >> he's talking about an imaginary party respectfully. protecting tax cuts for people who own corporate jets is not a lunch bucket issue. and that's where the republican party is now. the republican party -- i mean everything that you just heard was correct, it just doesn't
happen to be what the republican party is pushing. >> you mean that 47% that romney is putting down is actually the republican party? >> the 47% who always want a handout with government programs because they can't earn livings otherwise. you know, the cpac convention is like going to the produce department and thumping the cantaloupes to see who's ripe. that's what the republicans are looking for. >> let's go back to something that's hot right now. what about wayne lapierre being a featured speaker? is there an identity when the pro-gun lobby, the second amendment people who believe in idea logically that we've got to have a gun to protect ourselves from a tie ran cal government some kay, is that part of the republican -- i went back and looked at the republican platform. it's all pro nra language. is your party, the republican party now, identified pretty much uniquely with the nra. >> first of all, i would say we're the pro liberty, pro freedom party which i believe is part of what the nra platform is. second of all, if you look at states like pennsylvania, ohio, wisconsin, michigan, where we pick up a lot of democratic votes is on that issue where they do feel that obama and others are coming to take away their gun. that's why gun sales are up all across the country. >> do you think obama is coming to take away somebody's gun? >> well, you explain to me why gun sales are up in all these places, where there are very strong democratic bases. >> i wish you'd answer a simple question. do you as an obviously articulate person believe that
president obama wants to take away people's guns? i haven't seen any proposal for confiscation. not a single one. >> i believe, i believe -- i believe that this president greatly wants to limit gun rights. and what i also believe is that he is leveraged terrible tragedies across this country in an emotional way to try to advance a liberal agenda when it comes to guns and i think that's unfortunate. >> i think it's a gun safety agenda, but thank you, john. really thank you. please come back. i want to hear from you. up next, the one issue that brought president obama and dick cheney together and it's positive actually. i believe this president wants to greatly limit gun rights and that he has leveraged terrible tragedies across this country in an emotional way to try to advance a liberal agenda. >> i think it's a gun safety agenda. thank you, john, thank you, please, come back. i want to hear from you. nchtsz up next, one issue that's brought president obama and dick chene yrksz together. i don't say a lot of good things about dick cheney, but i'm going to do it. come back to "hardball," the place for politics, you'll be surprised. it's exciting! wow! what exactly is a cashback concierge?
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♪ ask an allstate agent about the value plan. are you in good hands? new jersey governor chris christie has sky-high approval ratings in his home state but that may not be enough to make new jersey a red state is christie runs for president. according to a new quinnipiac poll in, a hypothetical 2016 matchup between governor christie and hillary clinton, the governor comes up just short. it's clinton over christie 49-45. that would be a rouser. that's enough to keep you excited about politics. christie against clinton. let's have it! we'll be right back. none of us would want to be told we can't marry the person we
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spend less time on the ground and more time in the air. suddenly, faraway places don't seem so...far away. ♪ our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law. for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well. >> welcome back to "hardball." in his inaugural gesture, president obama made it clear that he intends to make marriage equality a priority in his second term. currently there are nine states and the district of columbia, there they are on the map in which same-sex marriage is legal now. and there is legislation percolating in state courts that could add to that number. and is evidence that this fight
for gay marriage is moving forward. today the respect for marriage coalition took out a full-page ad. it was so impressive in the big papers of the country, showing bipartisan support for freedom to marry. chad griffin is president of the human rights campaign, a great organization. he co-chairs the respect for marriage coalition that paid for that ad. i would love to know your financing there. and joan walsh is editor at large of salon.com and a msnbc contributor. chad, that ad was very impressive. we all know why. if we put it back up again, we'll know why we were impressed. what was dick cheney, the man of the hard right, i would sometimes say malicious right, what is he doing on such a fine piece of news print? >> look, this is one of those issues. i know it's rare in washington, chris, but there is actually bipartisan immigrant on marriage equality. this ad features laura bush and dick cheney and colin powell and ends with president obama. what else do those three agree on? >> now, buddy, we're going to get into trade craft. you didn't go to them and ask them to sign on to this ad. you found what they said in print, right?
>> these were public interviews. these are clips, tv clips. >> did they know they were going to be used in these ads? >>. no these were tv clips. these are obviously public officials who went about their support for marriage equality. >> just to stay on that one bad penny, where is cheney on marriage equality, exactly? >> the last time cheney has talked this publicly, which has been some time now is the clip i believe where he says freedom is freedom for everyone. but he has talked about the importance of states moving forward on this issue. >> so he is where the president was a while back, a few months ago. what do you make of this, joan? you and i usually look at things in a similar fashion. i did like to see laura bush up there. it's a good independence movement by her. i'm impressed that she got out there. didn't do much of that as first lady. but she is doing it now. >> yeah, i mean, as a supporter of marriage equality, i think it's a great ad. it's a very smart ad, and it reflects where the country is going, chris. as a democrat, there is only one person in the ad who showed any political courage whatsoever in taking his stand, and that was
barack obama when he came out for marriage equality, it was very controversial. north carolina had just passed an anti-gay marriage referendum. there were people who said he was risking support in some of the black community where certain preachers have some mixed peel feelings about gay marriage. and what he did, he led opinion, and he led public opinion toward greater support for gay marriage. you know, dick cheney, in 2004, karl rove used anti-gay marriage initiatives to really rev up the christian conservative evangelical vote. it would have been a really courageous thing for him or laura bush for that matter to have said something? 2004 when karl rove was helping ride that issue to victory. so better late than never, but it's late. >> nine years ago, everybody is changing. so many people are changing on this. tell me how you read it. i read the platforms. i said ate while ago. the republican platform on this issue sucks. it's terrible. they have not changed as a party. the party still has to play to
its hard right like it does on guns, immigration, everything else. how are you going to make it truly bipartisan? >> we're going to continue working with republicans like those you see in the ads, republicans like ted olson and ken melman. more and more folks are evolving towards support for marriage equality. some of those folks have actually supported marriage equality for a few years now. some of those clips are from a few years back. a poll released yesterday shows that 77% of americans believe that marriage equality will be the law of the land within the next two years. >> wait a minute. you know, you know politics, don't you? >> indeed. >> this is an old theory. and joan, you've seen these polls. i'm going to you because it's pure politics. when people are asked who is going to win this election, it's a secret way of asking who they are for. it usually shows a pro pond rens or a preference or prejudice towards the person who is going to win. a huge number of people, more than four out of five say it's going to be the law of the land? >> i think it reflects that
people know it is going to be the law of the land. so there are probably people in there who are ambivalent, but want to be on the right side, as they do with politicians, chris. but it also reflects what we know is that young people are overwhelmingly leading this issue, and they're leading the grownups in the right direction. >> yeah. >> and we know in our families, as people come out, the older generation accepts it because they see it. >> i think it's comfort too. it used to be the image of same sex equality marriage equality was a gay pride parade with some of the real outrageous performances on a float somewhere. now their images our state has it and it's fine. >> there is no question. finally we are seeing real americans, families, just like the folks next door. >> thank you, chad griffin and joan walsh. late today "the dallas morning news" requested laura bush requested that she be taken out of that ad campaign. we'll be right back after this. [ male announcer ] how do you measure happiness?
let me finish tonight with this. there is nothing so powerful as an idea whose time has come. and that idea today is marriage equality. the numbers are roll in as more and more americans accept the idea as the young are seen embracing it, indeed wondering why it was a debate point to begin with. tonight we show you a full-page newspaper ad with pictures of general powell and even dick cheney joining in support of marriage equality. well, we will see. i look at the 14th amendment to