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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  August 8, 2013 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT

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let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm michael smerconish in for chris matthews. leading off tonight, rnc chairman reince priebus continues his attack for the upcoming projects about hillary clinton. why wouldn't he? this issue has everything that republicans could ever dream of, bashing hillary, and rallying the base all at the same time. it's the far right trifecta and priebus nose it. here's his plan. he's planning to shut them out of the primary process if they don't pull them. this morning on "morning joe" he
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dismissed the counter argument by nbc that the entertainment division has nothing to do with the news division. >> the fact is i cannot have companies that are in the business, whether it be nbc entertainment or whoever is making the decisions, i cannot have companies in the business of what i consider to be promotional movies about the life of hillary clinton, when at the same time we know that her people are gearing up for a presidential right-hand, and then i'm going to bring those people in to depose the candidates for running for president on the republican side of the aisle? >> priebus isn't alone on this. maureen dowd, even our own chuck todd have conceded his point has some rationality. if you think rationate is what drives priebus and the party, think again. he's wading into an ideology that he's even warned against, party isolationism. speaking to andrea tanteros, he
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endorsed an idea to let the far right control the debates. this is that plan. >> charm, what do you think about a talk radio debate, where maybe i get together with my buddy sean hannity, and mark levin, and we interview some of the candidates. the bay i think would like that. >> listen, i actually think that's a very good idea. >> here's the irony. he led a massive gop autopsy to figure out why they got crushed in the last election. the results, the party needs to, quote, learn to appeal to more people. this is how you do it? by shutting out news outlets and retremendousing for a your fox news echo chamber michael steele was chairman of the rnc before priebus. joan walsh action and both are msnbc political analysts. michael, if this were still the steele administration, would you be pursuing this path? >> yeah, some form of it, to be honest. >> why? >> but will et me break it down
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for you. i wouldn't be pursuing it now, because there's no body of evidence to prove your point, so there's nothing beyond the base to rally the american people and those in the media who, like chuck todd and others, would say, yeah, this does not smell necessarily correct. to do it now sort of goes to your point about the trifecta, and i think it does set up an argument that may come back to bite, point one. point two -- how do you infers this with the candidates sum 2015 when they're crap to get on the board and nbc offers a debate. they're going to turn it down? or point three, they say, you know what? if you hold a debate and do your thing, that's fine, we just won't cover it. i think this is premature, though i get what is being done here and probably would do some form of it, but not now. >> i used the words echo chamber. i was thinking of the wen dar
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morning after 2012's election when those were paying attention only to drudge, fox radio and -- it was like a truck had hit hem. >> because they were only talking to each other and only watching fox news, and only listens to rush. >> won't this be more of that? >> i think it is more of that. i think on the one hand you have this alleged autopsy and this desire to reach out to more people, michael, but of this desire to go insular, control the terms of the debate. sadly it seems like mr. priebus decided the last long campaign with a lot of debates was not good for his party, people didn't like what they saw. this time around, i would think a lot of new candidates would want to be talking to a larger audience, certainly chris christie if he were to run would not abide by a ditch cnn or ditch nbc strategy. >> some people in the party don't see the media as just
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liberal, but as a group that com spires with the white house. this is rand paul during an interview yesterday on geraldo rivera's radio program. >> you know, you can look back to the last primary season and wonder whether there was collusion between some reporters. when no republicans were bringing up anything about trying to have any limits on birth control. so you wonder if there was a concerted action between a former democratic operative and basically the president's campaign -- >> well, are you alleges that george stephanopoulos was a democrat plant during the debate? >> i'm saying it makes you wonder. he's also said publicly he has frequent correspondence with his friends who are still involved with the white house. >> i love the part "it makes you wonder" it reminds me of "the house of cards" the francis underwood version, you might think so, but i couldn't
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possibly comment. >> i'm no fan of the treatment that republicans at the national, even the local level receive by the media, whether it's in print or tv or radio, it doesn't matter. we know how the deck is stacked, and i appreciate people focusing just on fog,. >> i think we have to be careful here. it's a legitimate point to raise concerns about whatever division in these operations, doing this type of self-promotional, on behalf of hillary clinton, at the beginning of what could be a hotly contested open seat, so i i think it's a legitimate point to be made. >> michael, i would understand it, more, joan, i will put this to you, i would understand is more if the negative was
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attributal to the questioning by partisan members selfthe media, but it wasn't. often it was the audience, often it was questions from fox news that elicited they responses. >> that brought out the crazy. >> rand paul sounds paranoid. when the contraception -- that was rick santorum talking to a christian magazine. cede ception was a big part of the cycle, it wasn't partisan questions from the media that made the gop debates the most memorable. it's whether a gay soldier asked a question. >> in 2010 when i was deployed to iraq i had to lie who i was,
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and i didn't want to lose my job. my question is, under one of your presidencies, do you question to circumstance come vent -- >> yeah, i would stay any type of sexual activity -- i think it tries to inject -- and the military's job is to do one thing. that's to defend our country, to the ability to do so. and i believe this undermines that ability. >> similarly, i'm not going to show this, but it was another fox debate. i'm sure you remember the 10 to 1 question, that was bret behr who threw that into play. you won't eradicate those
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questions. >> i think a lot of people were surprised how reporters really dogged these candidates in 2011 and 2012, so there's no sanctuary here when you're running for the presidency. there should be balance, there should be openness for sure, there's no sanctuary, so you're going to get the tough questions. i think the candidates know that going into this, which again is more of a play on my estimation that rallies the base, as reince says on "morning joe" he's being approached from people saying it's about time. i think it's too soon, proo premature in the sense that you don't know what the final product will be. at the end of the day, how much of it will you control when you have seven, eight, nine candidates vying for the nomination. >> let me ask this question of joan wallish. might it impact the ploukt?
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and i raise this thinking of "zero dark thirty." there was a hue and cry this would be a valentine to president obama, the catherine bigelow movie. there was a delay in the release, and when it came out president obama was like a ten or 20-second figment in a steve croft interview and that's it. in other words, i think the concerns had an impact. might they have an impact on the way that hillary clinton is treated, by cnn and nbc? >> they might. one thing about cnn, that's being directed by charles ferguson, who did "inside job" who is kind of hostile to the kind of corporate democrat position that hillary clinton represents. there's no evidence that either of these projects is biased in her favor, but reince priebus, i just want to say as a woman, i thought the way they treated mika this morning, i would never let you personally moderate a debate, coming on to a show where she's a co-host and putting her down like that and
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challenging her objectivity. i think it's kind of mean and has the potential to backfire, especially when he makes it personal like that. there was something off about it. >> i appreciate you both being here. thank. coming up, things just got worse for mitch mcconnell, his campaign chief just got caught on tape saying this, quote -- between you and me i'm holding my nose for two years, because what we're going here will be a big benefit to rand in to 2016. when your own campaign manager doesn't like you, it's no wonder your safe seat just got tossed into the -- and the calls for bob filner's removal from office are growing louder. we have his former deputy campaign manager, who counts herself among him victims. plus one former texas republican official has come up with a new reason to oppose
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obama care. it's the work of satan and signals the end of the world. finally let me finish tonight between the important difference between a crime and hate crime. this is "hardball," the place for politics. but, dad, you've got... [ voice of dennis ] allstate. with accident forgiveness, they guarantee your rates won't go up just because of an accident. smart kid. [ voice of dennis ] indeed. are you in good hands? like carpools... polly wants to know if we can pick her up. yeah, we can make room. yeah. [ male announcer ] space. yes, we're loving this communal seating. it's great. [ male announcer ] the best thing to share? a data plan. at&t mobile share for business. one bucket of data for everyone on the plan, unlimited talk and text on smart phones. now, everyone's in the spirit of sharing. hey, can i borrow your boat this weekend? no. [ male announcer ] share more. save more. at&t mobile share for business. ♪
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the new hampshire primary is still more than two years away, but we have new polling showing where the race stands. let's check the "hardball" scoreboard. first to the democrats, where hillary clinton maintains a mammoth lead. it's clinton's 62, and vice president at 8%. and now to the republicans, where it's more of a race. christie the early favorite at 21%, rand paul in second with 16%, and jeb bush in third with 10. marco rubio's lost the lead he had earlier in the year. we'll be right back. " yummy, scrumptious bars. hmm? i just wanted you to eat more fiber.
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welcome back to "hardball."
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what does mitch mcconnell's own campaign manager think about working for the mcconnell campaign? an audio recording was released today of a conversation between an arden ron paul activist and jesse benton. benton who is married to ron paul's granddaughter oversaw his election campaign, and is widely expected to play a significant role in a potential presidential campaign for rand paul in 2016. are you following all of this which benton complies on the tame. a recording has beensh in which benting in hi own words describes how he feels about his current job. >> between you and me, i'm sort of holding my nose for two years. doing here will be a big benefit to rand. so that's my long vision. >> benton responded with a statement today. he said, quote, it is truly sick that one would record a private
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conversation i had out of kindness and use it to try to hurt me. i believe in senator mcconnell and i'm is 00% -- being selected is one of the great mondayoring of my life, and i look forward to victory in november of 2014. if he has to hold his know to work for him to benefit rand paul's all but certain presidential ambitions, what does that say? the leader is in a statistic cal dead heat. secretary of state allison lunder gain-grimes, but also caught in the cross hairs on a challenge from matt biven. joining me to discuss this, sam stein and democratic strategist markie omero. what is the net of this? might there be blow-back? >> well, i'm sympathetic for
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anybody who has a private conversation turned into a national story. you know, that's unfortunate for him. i feel badly that happened. i think ultimately voters, though, are going to be looking at this race, not through the lens of what happened to this campaign manager a year out, but what do we know about mitch mcconnell? he continues to be far to the right of where most voters are. not only that, he really demonstrates what's wrong with washington, the gridlock, the obstruction clearly saying in his own words, our number one goal is to try to defeat president obama. and so i think a lot of voters have justhood it with washington as usual. there's no one who demonstrates that as much as mitch mcconned. the fact that his own campaign manager can't get excited is a symptom rather than a cause. >> sam stein, usual mitch mcconnell, i want you to put
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yourself into his mind and body. must you now fire this guy? >> uh, no, you can't fire this guy. part of the reason that jesse benton was brought over was to give him the type of cachet with rand and ron paul? as you mentioned his's ron paul's son-in-law. so you cannot just ease will i toss him aside. it is damaging to the extent that matt biven cannot just turn around and say, listen, even conservatives, even the -- on own campaign admit they have to hold their nose to work for the guy, so why not vote for the true conservative? that's where it becomes damages. what are you hoping for?
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doubt mcconnell to survive a primary process, or do you want the tea party candidate to be victorious? >> i think there are pros an cons for both for sure. certainly mitch mcconnell is a known brand and that's one that's weakened, one in a continues to be unpopular and vulnerable, but he'll be likely better funded for a tea party than biven. i think biven has a clear opening, as sam said, to try to make news of this and try to keep the story around. look, grimes i think is strong. she is clearly strong. she wants it, she has a lot of strong support, a lot of enthusiasm and charisma. i think she'll be strong against both candidates. >> i think the real question, sam stein, is how do republican primarily voters react to this issue. >> i don't know. you know, i hate to come on the show show and say i don't know things. my suspicion is that opinions of
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mitch mcconnell are bakley baked in the cake. the guy has been around for quite a long time. people in kentucky know who he is. kentuckiens like him. but if you had the mind-set, this reinforced the theory. if el thought he was a good politician, i don't know if this necessarily dissuedes you. >> the strange this ink to me, at least, listening to this conversation, is that it was not among friends over a beer, where you might be inclined to say, my god, i'm holding my nose for the next two years. there was a certain underlying hostility in that discussion, and then he drops this bomb like, play psychiatrist. what did you think of it as you listened to it? >> i mean, it's pretty standard practice that you should never really say things like that. you can shouldn't speak like that in any real company except
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for maybe your mom, your therapist or spouse unless you're read,for it toss out. the political community in ka is ultimately pretty small, so it's a mistake and probably means he's said it to other people also. >> did you real it the same way? i heard you chuckle. >> what's odd is this is the second time i believe that a surrepetitious recording has leaked. the first time was the strategy sessions for dealing with the potential ashley judd candidacy. it's incredibly rare to happen twice. it suggests there's people in the republican party, perhaps who are out to get mitch mcconnell. >> margie, i guess it's a new way of doing business, where at all times these candidates, as well as their chief officials have got to believe that which they're saying is being recorded. >> for better or worse, everybody -- candidates, operatives, staff, interns --
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just assume you're on camera being miked at all times. >> that's a weird reality to live in, but yes. >> i keep waiting for b-roll, which shows him smiling. i swear i don't think i've ever seen an image where the imagine is anything but, you know, frumpy in his appearance. >> yes, he does tent to have the same facial expression throughout it all. the initial statement from the campaign is they're tilling i by jesse. he's going to try to turn bad lemon into bad lemonade, i guess. >> thank you both. hey, don't forget, you can listen to my radio program weekbay mornings from . a reason to oppose obama care? she says it's the work of satan, this is "hardball"," place for politics. getting your vegetables every day? when i can. [ bop ]
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back to "hardball." time for the sideshow. former presidential candidate mitt romney reemerged this week with unsolicited advice for republican voters, will you will he fellow republicans listen? here was jimmy fallon's take on that last night. >> mitt romney told republicans that they need to pick a candidate for 1016 who can actually win. and republicans said, i wish you had told us that last year. next up the chair ofs texas is coming against the here is kathy adams speaking about that on n time talk road. >> the latest nonsense i saw from the homeland security department was something like a
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million people that have come here on visas that we have no idea where they are. >> do you know where they're taking us with this? because they want the solution to all these lost foreigners in the country, the solution is biometric scanning. >> i do understand that. i've seen it, i've heard it. of course, we know in biblical prophecy that that is the end time. that is going to be the brand, either on our foreheads or on the back of our hands. that is demonic through and through, the end times prophecy. there's no question about that. in case you were wondering, the senate immigration bill does not include the branding of immigrants. michael bloomberg is taking the lessons of detroit's bankruptcy to heart. he cautioned that new york city could suffer a similar fate if it takes the well-being for granted. it comes on the anniversary of on new york's own fiscal crisis
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in the '70s. here's a flashback to the last federal bailout, which was signed 35 years ago on this days in 1978. >> on the steps of city hall in new york this afternoon, president carter signed into law a bill to keep the city from going bankrupt. with this law, the federal government guarantees more than 1.5 billion of loans to the city over the next four years. the white house decided it should be done outside where itled draw a large crowd, an effort in the white house to portray firm presidential action. we've come a long way. up next, 13 women have now acowsed bob filner of sexual harassment. when we return, we'll meet one of his accusers. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. jackie: there are plenty of things i prefer to do on my own.
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i'm julia boorstin with your cnbc market wrap. the dow jumped 27 points, knead dab ended higher by 15 points. more americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week. jobless claims rose by 5,000. groupon shares soared 21% after a better than expected earnings report, and naming cofounder eric lefkofsky as the new ceo. the cbs blackout is now in its seventh day. that's it from cnbc, first in big worldwide. now back to "hardball." we're back, 13 women have come forward with charges of inappropriate behavior against san diego mayor bob filner, but
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the newest charges may be the most disturbing yesterday. two female veterans said he made sexual advances at them last year, the truly shocking thing is where exactly filner met them. at an event for victims of sexual assault in the military. the two women were themselves victims of rape. this morning, one of the women eldonna fernandez spoke with nbc's chris jansing. >> this is an organization that helps women and an organization of women who have all been victims of sexual assault, sexual trauma in the military. we trusted him, and apparently he hit on about seven or eight of us within the organization, which to me is very egregious. to come into an organization like that is supposed to be a safe space for us to heal. that's why it was called a healing and hiring fair. >> it just adds to the list of shocking behavior by the san diego democrat.
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>> i would have to squirm a little, and just as recently as a couple months ago this happened. i turned and he just slobbered down my chin. i was so violated and so offended. >> as we were leaving the office, all the guys left. i was the last one in the room, and bob stepped between me and the doorway, and he stopped me, got very close to me, and ran hi finger up my cheek, and he whispered, do you want a man in your life? >> i was placed in the filner headlock and moved around while he whispered sexual comments in my ear. mayor filner challenged me to give him one example of how his behavior towards me. i pointed out that he asked me to work without my underwear on. he had no comeback. >> the emballotsed mayor has
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entered a two-week behave program, but has refused to step down, leaving his opponents with only one option, a costly and time-consuming recall process. she too says he was harassed, and karen finney is the host of "disrupt." laura, what exactly did he do to you? >> in 2005, one of my duties was to staff him at fund-raising functions, and i was at a formal dinner when i was responsible for moving him from table to table. when i stood next to him, one of the guests commented i should be appreciated for my effort and i had worked my behind on. he proceeded to tell me to turn around action which i did, and he patted me on the behind and laughed and said, nope, it's still there. >> what was the reaction? >> i think they were in shock,
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and i found that the anger and the humiliation, what you might association -- reactions you might associate with the situation come later, and so i would imagine that that was similar for the guests. >> it seems like there's strength in numbers, to use that old expression, that so many women are coming forward. why didn't you come forward sooner? >> well, i do you wanted the incident, demanded an apology and asked this not happened to other women at the time, but it's extraordinarily challenging to confront those in power, you're not sure he's doing this to other people, and furthermore you're not sure you'll be taken seriously. it's extraordinarily intimidating. the fact that we just heard navy retired rear admiral and former -- and dean at san diego state, assert the same thing, it
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speaks to how difficult it is. >> was it nevertheless known among people who are close to him, hey, this guy is creepy and you've got to be careful? >> you know, i don't know that for sure. i think some of his behavior has devolved and become more pervasive and more intense over the years, so it's hard to speak to that issue in isolate. i don't think this was a case where everyone knew and wasn't saying anything. i think everyone had a suspicion, but i don't -- obviously we're all finding out now. he spend 20 years as a member of congressivities last we're hillary rosin told cnn that his behave was no secret to some people in congress. >> i actually had dinner over the weekend with some female members who said this guy has been -- that everybody thought he was a little keepy. >> dade weigel wrote that his
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ultra-slow-motion downfall tells us how long you can get away with being a creep in politics. is the tolerance for mild creepyness is quite high, because your victims don't know how much of it they're expected to put up. karen, as i've watched this unfold, i've been thinking about sandusky. if there are three victims, there need to be ten victims. it's hard to believe that for 20 years in the house, he wasn't up to the same shenanigans. >> he probably was, and again, probably there people didn't come forward, because they weren't sure, how much of this do i put up with? is it just me? >> part of this makes me want to remind people, is this is why it's so important that we create ways for victims to come forward and know they will be listened to and heard and believed, because that time and time again, from the sandusky case to military sexual assault cases that we've been hearing more and more about, what did the victims say? they were afraid to come forward. they were afraid because the
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person was in power. they were afraid it won't be believed, right? it's interesting the i can tell us there's a conversation that i and many of my women friends that we get from our parents when we go to the work world telling you to be prepared for it. i was lucky my parents always said, if it does, we'll believe you, but i think we don't have enough systems and enough, you know, attitudinal changes to make sure that people know. this is zero-tolerance. we cannot tolerate this kind of behavior. it's not cute, it's not funny. it's got to be a zero-tolerance policy. >> how do we make it easier for those who have been victimized to come forward? i want i think you give them a means to do so. there's statute of limitations, sometimes people don't want to file lawsuits. how can you promote a work environment where there doesn't feel there will be a consequence
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to do so. part of the reason i came out is because i wanted to encourage women to come forward and show them you will not be vilified. >> last month he announced he would be entering a two-week therapy program to address his behavior. >> let me be absolutely clear. the behaviorivity engaged in over many years is wrong. my failure to respect women and the intimidating contact i engage in at times is inexcusable. this intensive counseling will just be the first step in what will be a continuing program that will involve ongoing regular counseling. i must become a better person. >> the hubris is astounding in the face of 13 women coming forward. this is an arduous process, though, now to get rid of him if he won't go. i certainly hope people -- there are a number of different efforts. ished sigh as a democrat, i
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don't care democrat or republican, this guy as got to go. where that mean the democratic party can help make that happen, i know it's an arduous process. against, this is unacceptable. did you believe anything he just said? he rae reading from a script and there was no sense of remorse, no sense of i really screwed up here. two weeks? are you kidding me? that is like the hollywood, i went to rehab and now i'm fixed. nobody should buy that. >> if i can play armchair shrink, i get from him what i get from weiner, this seems a personal that would rather by drawing the limelight for negative reasons than not at all. >> but it seems like this is a person who has no sense of what is or is not appropriate. there's no mechanism in his brain that says -- that is a sickness. >> i'm going to say, karen, if i
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could interrupt. it's even beyond that. i think he knows exactly what he's doing. he laughs when he does it, he enjoys -- and ultimately this is about power and the abuse of power, and when you have -- whether you're talking about politicians or ceos or other folks, it's about abusing that power. so he knows that he's doing it. >> that's why i know it's so important that we're now having they conversations, this issue about power, this issue about, again, people feeling like they will be believed if they come forward, but also creating a climate where it is absolutely nothing tolerated, because you get away with stuff like that when you think you can. illustrates laura, knowing this personality away -- i take it you're not surprised that he refuse toss go silently into that night? >> i'm not surprised, not surprised at all. the recall faces significant challenges because of the structure and the timeline.
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i'm not confident that it can succeed as a political strategist. just the sad fact of the matter. we do need him to resign as well, and so the ball is in his court, but i think there's things we can do to put pressure on him. i think the investigation by the sheriff's office will put pressure on him, and my hope is, whether it's because of, you know, whatever the rationale or the reason, my hope is that he's going to choose to resign, that's because of the public shaming, because of his pocketbook, i can't really say, but i hope he reaches that tipping point. >> thank you both for being here. up next, what do you think of when you see this flag? if it's the tea party, you're not alone. now a new york man finds himself at the center of a legal controversy, because he wanted to honor veterans by flying this flag. this is "hardball," the place for politics. being sixteen, alex thinks he's invincible. his dad knows he's not. that's why dad got allstate accident forgiveness. it starts the day you sign up.
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we constantly monitor the web so if any of your personal information is misused, we're on it. ♪ ow. [ male announcer ] call 1-800-lifelock or go to today. welcome back to "hardball" symbolism is often in the eye of the beholder. they filed a federal lawsuit against the city partly over the symbolism of the famous gad stone flag. it was a symbol of the american revolution, but in recent years it's been flown by some attendees at tea party rallies. though it's certainly not a formal symbol, it's in march shortly after a local veterans group replaced the tattered american flag with a new american flag and a city
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officials ordered it taken down. the troyic association filed a federal lawsuit. moiz valencia is a citizen volunteer, he actually purchased and gave the the gadsden flag to the veteran's group. peter applebaum is the our town columnist for "the new york times" who wrote about the conflict. moises, are you a tea party guy? >> no. i've never been a member of the tea party. i'm not affiliated with any political group of this nature. >> why this flag? you shelled out $16 of your own money to get a gadsden flag where there hadn't been one. why this flag? >> i always liked the gadsden flag because to me it symbolizes our human unalienable rights that we as americans and humans possess. it spoke to me as part of american history that i'm very fond of. and i'm a historian of american history. so that's why. >> to whom, if anyone were you trying to send the don't tread on me message? >> i was trying to send the
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message specifically to our mayor, norm brampson. he has had a long history of disrespecting our veterans here in new rochelle and also our military history. he has leveled fort slocumb that we had in new rochelle. that's completely gone. the armory is our last remaining bit of history, and they have not treated that place very fairly. it's very bad condition. and they have done everything that they could short of tearing it down to actually make sure it's in as poor shape as possible. >> peter, your piece which i shared with my radio audience really struck a chord. all across the country people calling and were passionate on both sides of this issue. what is th big picture that you see? >> the big picture is just how polarized we have become as a country. even five years ago there would be no dispute. if you google tea party flag, this is what comes up. for a lot of people now there is a charge to this flag that there wasn't. it's a conservative symbol.
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i think that's what the city was getting at. >> a friend of mine who owns a tavern close to independence hall, the liberty bell, betsy ross, used to fly it outside his establishment, and then told me he felt obliged to take it down when it became this symbol because he didn't want to lose half of his audience there. >> have been disputes all around the country, in arizona, connecticut, rhode island over this very same issue. again, this was an issue, a flag that a few years ago had no connotation other than history and patriotism. but now it's part of the american culture and political wars. >> moises, the armory is municipal space. it was deeded over from the state. what would you say to someone who says i feel alienated by that flag because of its association flying on public space? >> well, what i would say to the person is that you have to look into what the context of our ceremony we held was. you have to see what we were trying to do, what the flag really symbolizes. and i believe that we can all
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come together under that meaning of unalienable rights. and if we have a dialogue, we can see it's not as partisan as some people would like to make it. >> and to your point, there was a 5-2 vote taken. 5-2, along party lines. the ds said get rid of it, and the rs said keep it. >> whether it's government speech or whether it's private speech, it's a city-owned armory and a city-owned flag pole. and the veterans group is chartered by the city. so if a court concludes that this certainly government speech, then they have very broad powers to say what they will allow and what they won't alou. >> you obviously think there is an important principle at stake here that necessitates litigation to resolve whether this flag can fly over the armory. >> buzz of the fact that the veteran's organization is charted by the city and they have been in charge of doing things like this in the past. and they've been allowed to choose what they have flown in
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the past. our city government has been at memorial day services where that flag was flown. this has become a political issue, and it's being made one when there really isn't one. >> peter, just 30 seconds or so left. what kind of reaction have you gotten to your piece? did you get the same kind of passion that i heard on the airwaves? >> aside from the fact that we're so polarized, this is a symbol that goes back to the beginning of the country, and it has a huge historical charge as well as the contemporary issues. so yeah, people are very passionate about it. >> part of me says if you don't like what the symbol has become, fight for the right to take it back. >> absolutely. there are a lot of aggrieved people in america. and a lot of people feel don't tread on me. it tends to be conservatives that use the flag. maybe liberals should too. >> it's a great issue. moises, thank you for being here. peter, thanks for writing about it. >> thank you so much. when we return, allow me to finish with an important distinction between a crime and a hate crime. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics. clients are always learning more to make their money do more.
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let me finish tonight with that horrific footage of a fight on a florida school bus that made news this week. i'm sure you've seen or heard about the three 15-year-olds who beat a 13-year-old, gave him two black eyes and a broken arm. there is a debate now raging about the pictures you're looking at, some wondering if this was a hate crime because they watched three african-american perpetrators beating a white teen. but the motivation here seems to have been not race, but the 13-year-old snitched on one of
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the 15-year-olds for drugs. but there was a hate crime this week that was in news, and that came not on a school bus, but in a baseball field. it happened at mcu park in brooklyn, which is home to the met-affiliated brooklyn cyclones. a statue there depicts jackie robinson and peewee reece both playing for the dodgers in 1947or on crossley field. a particularly harsh day for robinson. robinson endured racist taunts, jeers and death threats that would have broken the spirit of a lesser man. some idiot added the n word and a was stika and a heil. i'm not a fan of calling something a hate crime. i think we open pandora's box when we ascribe punishment based on motivation, meaning what is in a american's head. but this is a clear-cut case. the defacing of the jackie robinson statue should be treated differently say than the arrest of a teen who tags or spray paints his name on a subway. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with


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