tv Inside Story ABC June 21, 2015 11:30am-12:01pm EDT
>> a gunman kills nine people in a south carolina church. is this just the story of a hate crime about one man or is it about us all? let's get the inside story. good morning and welcome to "inside story." i'm tamala edwards. let's introduce you to the panel. first up, pollster terry madonna. got a lot of stuff from you to dig into this morning. >> thank you, tam. >> also publishing executive and all kinds of executive brian tierney. >> thank you. >> attorney pedro ramos. >> good morning. >> and g.o.p. state official renee amoore. >> good morning. >> we're all a little sad this morning. we're still dealing with the fallout from charleston. a young man walked walked into a church -- young white man -- and in the end shot nine people who were in the middle of bible study on wednesday night. this is being called a hate crime -- a lot of talk about it. the president came out on thursday and talked about it and in passing said, "i don't know of any advanced nation that has the gun stats that we have, but there's not
the political will to deal with this." do we see any kind of gun control? if we couldn't do it after newtown, will there, perhaps be something -- even something small -- that as we see people come together over this issue we say, "something's got to change" or no? >> well, it would seem a very easy part of this is background checks for private gun sales. so this was a gift, something that transferred from his father, but this fellow had been arrested twice -- once for drug possession, other things. so, incredibly, 42 states don't have that background check. here in pennsylvania, they do have it, and this transaction wouldn't have occurred, but there's so many aspects of this in terms of mental health, hate crimes. there's so many different things aswirl -- that piece of legislation is one. i can say one part of this that was, like, breathtakingly beautiful was to see a parishioner speaking and expressing concern for the killer's parents and how hard, and i thought, "wow. talk about a sense of mercy
that somebody who'd gone through this in their own church is also thinking about the parents of the killer." it was very powerful. >> i think we've absolutely seen all those pictures of white and black south carolinians coming together all upset about what happened. renee, i want to go to you as a g.o.p. official, because the nra, which tends to support the party, has been very clear. they are anti-background checks. brian pointed out if this transaction had happened at a gun store, he wouldn't have gotten the gun. they'd have done a background check, found the felony, charges pending. the private sale, it could happen. does the party say to the nra, "come on. let's back down a little bit. this is just a little bit of wiggle room saying that if his father wanted to give him the gun, he needed to take him to a gun store or take him somewhere, get him a gun owner's license -- that's what some states do -- to say this sale is okay"? >> got to do something. we got to come together and do something, and i think it's time for the party to move on it and have those discussions. let me be real clear about that.
because this has got to stop. it has to. look -- not just this incident. look at all the other incidents that have happened with this. so we have to move on something, at least start the discussion. so that's what i'm happy about. people will come together and start the discussion, and that's what has already started. >> the second amendment was supposed to make us feel safe in our homes. it wasn't supposed to make us afraid to go to church, afraid to go to school, afraid to go to the movie theaters, and i do think that the president is right to frame this in broad terms. lots of things could be done to make things better, but our problem is one of our mind-set as a nation about our deification of the second amendment and guns in a way that, as the president noted no other modern nation, no other modern economy does. >> you look at numbers. the president almost seems to have given up, like it's just not gonna happen. is he right to have that attitude? >> well, it's very, very difficult, but look at it this way. we were talking about the nra. they supported the pennsylvania universal background check...
>> they did. >> ...when it passed in the 1990s. the problem now in political terms is that the nra thinks that, "oh, the folks who want to do background checks really want confiscation," and the folks on the other side say, "oh, the nra doesn't want background checks because they don't want any restrictions," and so it's the typical polarization that we see on so many issues, and that makes it difficult to move and both sides get hard, but the other thing that strikes me as a political historian is that we really have a deeply ingrained cultural problem in this country in race relations that requires new ways to think about how minorities and whites -- how we live with each other, how we deal with each other, how we integrate with each other, how we function together as a nation to complete a process that started with the extinction of slavery, that went through the segregation period.
we're not close to that yet, and that's gonna require a sea change in terms of how we all think about what it means to be an american. >> but we have to talk about it. >> well, let's talk about the optics on that. we're talking about a city where everybody's crying the governor's in tears, people are holding hands while the state house has the confederate flag above it, while people are driving down streets named for confederate generals. who is in charge of this? is it individual? is it political leaders? who takes this on and says "we're schizophrenic. we want to all get along, but then we've got all this stuff sitting here." where does it come from? >> and you're giving mixed messages. you're giving mixed messages to people. you're saying one thing, but you're doing the opposite. why have that flag going up there when that has a thing with slavery and all those other kind of things -- negative. just plain negative. and until we really sit down and talk about race, nothing's gonna happen. we keep just going over it like, "okay, let's hold hands, sing 'kumbaya.' we'll get this done." we have to take the next step.
what is the next step? we come together as leadership and really start talking and be serious about this and start down there in south carolina with the darn flag. take it down. >> well, let's move from south carolina and talk about our own backyard a little bit. brian, you used to have a leadership position at a number of newspapers and other things. i know race was an issue in talking about it. what should we be doing here? what should we be talking about? what terry's talking about that there's a conversation -- what should be happening in a city like philadelphia when we look at south carolina? >> well, i think that there's ongoing discussions and there's ongoing outreach. in our community, there's certainly tensions, but i don't think you're looking at anything like in south carolina although, frankly, one crazy lunatic, which part of this is what this is about, too can devastate a community, a church -- things like that. so i think that there are certain symbols of south carolina, and i get the whole 50 years ago the history of it, but the fact of the matter is, that symbol,
that flag represented a war in our country over slavery, that some people should be slaves. i mean, that's not something to be particularly proud about. it's something to be ashamed of in this day and age. so things like that should go, and if the south carolinas want to be -- it's kind of ironic that the governor of south carolina is also a mixed-race person. she's an indian-american. she's from southeast asia. so you've got all of these things kind of going, and what south carolina wants to represent, but what this legacy keeps pulling them back, as well, but the issues of race are something that are deep, and i don't think there's any if you do this, these things go away. it's kind of constant dialogue and working together and finding out, "wow, these are all --" that's why the symbol of that woman who's an african-american parishioner expressing god's love and saying, "i'm really concerned about --" i mean, that was like a teaching moment is what that woman offered the country. >> and that's about the church. that's who the church is. >> yeah. >> and it's about the whole healing process and about the faith, but, again, if we
don't come together -- and it starts from the top -- you know, from the president and everybody else, from the legislators and start talking -- not just in south carolina like you're saying -- tamala, everywhere. you know, everywhere to really make a difference before anything changes, because for young folks, somebody 21 to be this angry and so much filled with hatred, that's an issue for me. >> well, also, i think there's a question here, there's a lot of talk about dylann roof and this is a hate crime, but the question's been raised should we look at it as a terrorist action? we look at al-qaeda, we look at other groups. if we don't like their rhetoric, we go after people for things that we see them saying on facebook and elsewhere. is this bigger than just one guyoblem -- a hate crime," or is there an argument to look at supremacist organizations, this whole ethos he may come out of as a terrorist organization? >> i think it's important to do all those things, but it's also important to know what you're dealing with so that you know how to address it.
we have hate organizations. we should be dealing with those. here we have somebody welcomed into a church, was sitting among a congregation, and, which 10 minutes before, would have been seen as a positive thing. >> right. that's what they're supposed to do -- take everybody in. >> and you have a place -- you know, we have -- like other places, have the hate and evil and all that, and i think we should talk about it on its own terms, not try to put it into a bucket. you know, the flag is the perfect symbol here. if you talk about the flag you will have a discussion about race. >> a discussion is a light name for what you'll get on social media and elsewhere if you start talking about that flag in south carolina. let's switch a little bit and go to politics, 'cause, terry, you have a new poll out taking a look at governor corbett and some key issues, and the first thing that jumps at you, his approval rating. he's been in office for about half a year. 39% -- you noted that it's better than corbett in his first year, not as good as
rendell. what does that number tell us? is it a big marker or it's too early to tell yet? >> yeah, i think it's too early. i mean, first-year governors typically have a bad year. i mean, when you go back to milton shapp to bob casey to tom ridge to ed rendell to tom corbett, they all drop in their first year, first 15 months. they usually have a big agenda or serious problems, and they're not often successful in the first year of getting them done. the real question is, what happens when you get into year two and year three and year four? everyone -- every past governor was able to overcome that bad first year and win re-election with the exception of tom corbett. the other point i would make about it is that we have more -- talking about differences -- polarization and partisanship in the pennsylvania legislature than at any time in modern history. it's like we got one party from mars, one party from venus, and there's no middle, although my inside story, i have one rare moment of bipartisanship that i'll talk about, and that's not likely to change very much.
so we got a very conservative legislature, more conservative in the last three elections than any time, and a liberal governor. i'm not using liberal and conservative in a pejorative way, just as descriptive way. >> and the reaction in the polls seem to be hither and yon, as well. we like the death penalty, but we really wish people would just do life terms. we don't like recreational marijuana, but medical may be okay. >> yeah. well, i've never seen a number -- in polls that i do 87% of pennsylvanians support medical marijuana. i mean, think about that. >> that's a lot of people. >> and even on the legalization of pot mostly driven by the millennials that support it, you know, it's gone from the 20's a few years ago to 40%. now, pennsylvania's not gonna legalize marijuana. understand that. >> right. >> the legislature won't do it. i think there's a good chance they could legalize medical marijuana. it has a committee problem with the chairman of a committee that doesn't want to bring it out. there's problems with the medical community.
the pennsylvania medical society has its concerns, as do some physicians, but, overall 21 states and the district of columbia have it. >> you know, there's a concept called emotional intelligence, right? and this is the idea it's not just i.q., but it's your intelligence in terms of how to interact with people, how to understand, how to empathize -- all those sorts of things, and that seems to be so lacking. i mean, in pennsylvania, we're not alabama, so the extremes aren't as extreme, although there's some obviously very conservative and very liberal folks, but the role for a governor is -- and thankfully he dropped the head of the state police issue and some of the other ones. >> open records. >> open records. i mean, that was just so ridiculous to get rid of the guy because it upset newspapers and journalists because it seemed to violate the spirit of open records, a very popular staff person, who happened to be a republican, so stumbling out of the gate versus -- when i lived in atlanta for a while, i had a boss who went on to be a u.s. senator. he said, "brian, you have to learn how to geehaw," and that's what he had -- the ability to sit across
from somebody -- >> i don't know what that means. >> i don't think the governor's doing it. >> the ability to kind of "let's talk about this. let's find a common ground." >> but here's the question brian, because, you know june 30th is upon us. they need to try to get somewhere on the budget. he's backed off of those two issues that you raise. is it enough to get some sort of forward movement, or has he really just kind of -- he has not geehawed? >> you got that right. he's done. >> no. he's more jihad, i think than geehawed. >> [ laughs ] >> no, look. he is genuinely a decent guy who is very pleasant -- his demeanor, but the difficulties exist in terms of what each side wants to do. the republicans want to get a pension reform bill through the legislature that the governor has trouble supporting. some want a liquor privatization bill, which the governor can't support. the budget they're far apart on, and one thing they're close on actually closer than you would think, is property tax relief. >> that's true. >> the plans are not all that different, and i think they can be worked out, but i just want to make one quick point. here's the difference from years ago. republican and democratic lawmakers could sit together
like we are. you're gonna scream at me, you and i are gonna have -- we would go out to dinner afterwards. >> exactly right. >> but here's the difference. >> you'd play poker, or... >> that's right. that's right. but here's the difference. now they don't like each other and they don't trust each other. so, brian, how do i make a deal with you if i don't like you -- >> you won't. >> ...and i don't trust you? >> yeah. and part of it is, you have to come back to it and say, "i'm gonna have to build those trusts," because, in the end it's a three-part government right? >> yeah. >> so the governor can propose all he wants, and the legislature can, too, but -- >> and so where's the budget? >> we're down to the last minute. is there something he could do? if you could tell him to do one thing to grease the skids, what would you tell him to do? >> he needs to go out there and sit down and talk to these legislators one-one-one. go out and have a beer. i don't even know if he drinks beer, but do something with them. >> is a beer enough, guys? >> no, but he has to start. i mean, it's a start. it's not gonna happen right away, but he hasn't really started, and his staff and him have to be on the same page. >> you have to offer something that builds trust. >> neither side wants to concede anything at this point.
>> yeah, and you can't have your staff people sending one message, which is more aggressive, and then you trying to be, you know, mr. rogers. >> he's one place, and they're another place, so you've got to straighten that out. >> well, we've got to take a quick break, and we'll come right back to more "inside story." >> "inside story" is presented by temple university. temple fuels students with academics and opportunities to take charge. plugged into the city, powered by the world. temple.edu/takecharge.
>> welcome back to "inside story." let's talk a little bit about wine and the state of pennsylvania. a lot of talk about privatization. that may not happen. but the senate passed on home delivery of wine in changing some rules. they would just charge wineries a $100 fee, getting rid of some more exorbitant costs. it looks like they will come to something with the house. this might get signed by wolf. will this be what we get? we don't get privatization but you can get it through the mail -- whatever you want? >> about one-sixth, one-seventh of the way into the 21st century... >> we're almost there. >> ...we're almost into the 20th century. >> we're almost there. >> and i think it takes a lot of pressure away from the people most animated about modernizing the liquor-store system. >> you got to go further than that. >> it's some movement, though. look how long it took to get to this point. >> but if we get that, does the privatization talk go away just to get it at the house? >> look, there are only two states in the union that have both the wholesale and retail operations in the control of the state.
wolf supports modernization. a lot of senate republican leaders support modernization. the real privatization -- and remember the house has sent to the senate twice complete privatization bills, but i think we're all on to something. modernization. you can expand licenses under the lcb to all sorts of places that sell wine and, by the way it's not hard liquor. it's spirits in our state. >> yes. >> back to the prohibition. and you could have all sorts of licenses, raise money. modernization is likely to be supported in the senate. governor would sign it. if you can get the house on board, that's probably the bigger way to go. >> and this arises from litigation. it wasn't an act of enlightenment. >> right, right. >> it lets a little of the steam out of the valve. >> kathleen kane, who has enough troubles of her own, is also having troubles with her chief of staff. it came out this week -- he has a role also with the narcotics bureau -- that he had a vehicle he took from there a mercedes s.u.v. that he's been driving around, and that the taxpayers had paid $6,000 to get it fixed. her office is arguing, "well
this was better than paying $400 a month on a car lease." >> yeah, but the same fellow who, a few weeks ago, was also it was reported -- as was reported, there were allegations of sexual harassment. >> absolutely. >> so here's the chief of staff. he has allegations of sexual harassment, and they're allegations, but they're being investigated, i guess, in an a.g.'s office that just is so incompetent and crazy, and then the guy's driving around in a car that was confiscated. he's not doing undercover work. he probably just thought "i can get this. the mercedes looks pretty nice. i'll drive that instead." but the judgment -- the judgment level, you think day to day, if they're doing these things that you can see, can you picture how many crazy, bad decisions they're making behind the scenes? >> but the decision to come out and defend it and try to make an argument that it's okay -- to me, the fact that they actually stood up and did that what does that tell you? >> that she has issues. >> they're incompetent. >> that they definitely have issues and they're incompetent. they don't know what they're doing, and it's constant. this has been a pattern for her. this is nothing new for this whole department. i mean, it's crazy. >> this is your trusted advisor. this is your shield, right?
>> she's the one who's supposed to be watching over us and all the things that are happening. >> what's the next step that happens between the allegations that you raise and this? does he stick around or is that it? >> he stays around. >> he'll stay. she's gonna keep supporting him. he'll stay. >> and more problems have come out this past week. she had an unscheduled visit from investigators who searched her office and documents. >> good. >> you're a lawyer. does that tell you that ferman is getting ready to move? i mean, they're saying that a lot of activity has picked up in her office in the last few weeks around that case. >> well, i think it does suggest things are heating up on the investigation. you never know where things are internally, but there's only one way this is all going. >> this is the second time that investigators from the montgomery county d.a.'s office paid a visit with subpoenas, blah, blah, blah, and everybody's waiting to see what risa ferman, the d.a. in montgomery county, does. she has the grand jury presentment that was made public in which seven people testified
about the leak and whether or not the attorney general lied under oath, and, politically it seems that ferman can't wait until the fall. she's a candidate for judge. >> it could be that it's either imminent or you're afraid that's something happened that you can lose evidence, so... >> that's a great point. >> so we'll see what happens. and finally, let's talk a little bit. the mayor came out in philadelphia and said, "here's our plan for transportation when the pope comes in the fall." good luck. god help you if you're trying to get into center city and they're saying, "these are the trains, the limited service. be prepared to walk." and the question becomes, you have a lot of elderly who will want to see the pope, a lot of disabled, and also homeless who a lot of them live outdoors. that's where they get fed. does this plan look to you like it's going to work or like problems in the offing? >> well, there's some really security issues that they have to address, and that's part of the issues as it relates to this. they've been really clear -- the archbishop chaput, sister mary scullion helping him, as well -- making sure that the homeless will be taken
care of. they're not gonna be hidden, et cetera, and they're gonna be fed, but at the same time, when they have to secure the perimeter, they're gonna have to secure the perimeter. it's gonna be crowded. that saturday and sunday -- the week won't be bad -- it'll be crowded, and watching -- i mean, it's great to be present there. it's always good to watch it on channel 6, though, too. >> better. >> that's what i'll be doing. >> what do you do for all these old people who have been parishioners all their lives they cannot wait to see the pope? >> i think you're gonna see plans come out in more detail. what i think the mayor is doing appropriately is starting to manage expectations. >> and he doesn't have a choice. you got to manage it. >> before the plan comes out and it's very restrictive, you have to start preparing people. >> and good luck. that's all i'm gonna say. >> settling the table. but, you know, if you're an 85-year-old person, and, on the one hand, there will be opportunities in terms of buses and getting you, but you're still gonna be standing outside for a period of time. >> and it could very well be warm. >> and they'll still do it. >> we'll take a short break and come back to our insiders' inside stories.
>> "inside story" is presented by temple university. temple fuels students with academics and opportunities to take charge. plugged into the city, powered by the world. temple.edu/takecharge. >> welcome back to "inside story." let's get our insiders' inside stories. we'll start with you, terry. >> a rare moment of bipartisanship. we were talking about how tough things are. this week in the house of representatives, a commission that was looking at how schools get funded -- fair funding -- commission came out with a report, bipartisan, how to change, how to get schools funded in a fair way. i won't get into the details. they were high-fiving, they were patting each other on the shoulders. governor wolf was sitting there with republican lawmakers -- highly unusual, but it happened. >> all right. brian. >> there's been a lot of controversies about "draw mohammed" contest, you know, and there's been people showing up with guns and killing people and hate speech. well, there's something going on that's very vile. it's about a religious -- and hardly any controversy which is the way it should be.
the painting -- it's called "holy virgin mary" by a guy named ofili. it was sold about 10 years ago -- a picture of mary with elephant dung and nude photos on it, and it's gonna be sold for $2.5 million in auction, and what's wonderful is, there's not a single christian threatening the auction house, saying they're gonna blow it up. that's the way it is in america. >> all right. pedro. >> well, tomorrow, on monday there's going to be an announcement from the world meeting of families hunger and homelessness committee. among the things they will doing is rolling out a website that is actually live already today at www.mercyandjustice.org, and that website will highlight a number of projects being led through the pope's visit including particular projects that people can go online and help fund. >> all right. renee. >> i'm excited. the republicans have taken over philadelphia. the northeast republican leadership conference here thursday, friday, and
saturday -- over 600 republicans. this is a launch pad for us for 2016 -- presidential candidates here. we want to thank our chairman, rob gleason, and our committeeman, bob asher, and our committeewoman christine toretti. we are ready to take over, and we're gonna take the white house in 2016. thank you so much. >> okay. that's it for "inside story." happy father's day. we'll see you next sunday. >> i'm in nydia han along with eva pilgrim. >> a man is lucky to be alive after his car careens off the road into a new jersey river. people across the country and right in philadelphia are coming together today to pay tribute to the victims. charleston church shooting. first day of summer is officially here and temperatures are climbing into the 90s those stories and much more neck on "action news."