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tv   John King USA  CNN  May 8, 2012 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT

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few to help him chew over the experience. jeanne moos, cnn -- >> are you ready to go home? >> reporter: -- new york stock exchange >> reporter: new york. >> i'm wolf blitzer in sbgs "the situation room." the news continues next. good evening, tonight voters in north carolina decide whether to send an emphatic message against same-sex marriage. has president obama kept his health care message? because joe biden steps it in again, why the president's political team loves the vice president even though he often makes them cringe. we begin with primary elections that could send a loud national message. the race for the republican
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presidential nomination is all but over but we will get a taste tonight of whether the tea party will finally show some 2012 strength and a test of how important the culture wars will be in a year defined mostly today by economic challenges. our first stop indiana where 80-year-old senator richard lugar, leading republican voice on foreign policy is asking for one more term but facing a tea party and conservative revolt, revolts lugar's critics prove the senator last touch with the folks back home. dana bash is at lugar headquarters in indianapolis. you had a chance to talk with senate lugar a bit earlier today. let's listen to some of the exchange. >> reporter: you're 80 years old. you've had by all accounts a stellar career. why did you decide to take on this fight within your own party rather than just say it's been great, time to go? >> well, first of all, because i believe that i have a unique opportunity to serve my country with regard to arms control, with regard to terrorists, with
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regard to all sorts of foreign policy questions that really have to be tackled by somebody. i believe i have a unique opportunity to serve indiana agriculture and farmers generally. >> it is striking, dana, i understand his record, i understand the issues he loved but in a year like this, the first thing out of a man who is in risk of losing an election, to say foreign policy, wow. how does it look out there tonight? >> reporter: that is what is making a lot of republican strategist who want richard lugar to succeed scratch their head and cringe, frankly, because yes, that is definitely his record. it is the hallmark of his career, foreign policy, but it is frankly what has given him big trouble out here in indiana, the fact that jobs are on everybody's mind, not nuclear weapons being in the hands of terrorists, so that is a big problem. the other thing that is really fascinating, john, is that richard lugar, unlike the republican incumbents who lost to the tea party insur jens two
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years ago saw this coming and i asked him about that, he said i took the votes i wanted to take, those votes being for president owe ba with ma's two supreme court nominees for the dream act and other things that hurt him on the ground with republican voters. he seems very comfortable with the votes even though at the end of the day it could mean that his fellow republicans could oust him here. >> tim: vote will send a message to incoupkucouple incumbents ac the country. he was the mayor of indianapolis before he was a senator. let's listen to one of the voters. >> reporter: you were just talking to senator lugar. did you vote for him? >> no. first time i didn't vote for him. >> reporter: that was a long pause there. >> i hated to depart. >> reporter: why'd you do it? >> i needed someone that can go
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up to congress, put their foot down and say no more politics, we're going to do the right things, we can't let obama dictate to us anymore what he's doing. >> when you hear that voter say put their foot down, no more letting president obama get his way, is this, will this be if senator lugar loses tonight is it a tea party victory or a sense of voters saying been there too long? >> reporter: i think it's the latter, that it is the sense he has been there too long. there's no question that tea party activists and tea party groups have come in with a vengeance, spent their money and time to help lugar's opponent richard mourdock but it seems to be a referendum on senator lugar, you can see in that voter's face and hear it in his voice it pained him to vote against senator lugar. he's beloved even by people voting against him, i heard that from voter after voter after voter, as you said people who have known him since he was
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mayor of indianapolis. many of them think it's just not time for him anymore, no matter how much he tries to use seniority as his, to his benefit. >> most of the polls have closed in indiana. the polls that are still open will close soon. we'll bring you results throughout the night on cnn. dana bash is there and this will be a message to incumbents of both parties across the country. north carolina a statewide referendum on same-sex unions could give a referendum of a state president obama carried in 2008 and hopes to keep blue. voters voting that says "marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic union that shall be valid or recognized in this state." it bans domestic partnerships as well as marriage and remember the democratic convention to nominate the president for a second term is in north carolina this summer. let's go to chief white house correspondent jessica yellin. the president was supposed to be in north carolina today where
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his schedule last week said he would be. he often talks about showing leadership, showing boldness, showing political courage. did he duck, not want to step into the middle of the fight? >> today he didn't talk about gay marriage. he was in new york and talked about manufacturing. i'm told by a top democratic official that his senior advisers are now scrambling to try to figure out exactly what the president's position should be and how they should sort of clean this up. i should be more exact how they should clean this up after vice president biden sort of went further on the issue because gay rights groups have been pleased with the president to date aand where he has been on all of the issues and now it's an awkward position for the white house in an election year as you know. >> do they evolve again, they always say the presidents evolve. if you go back, george w. bush and dick cheney had a days agreement. from the get-go, up to the states. george w. bush said you need a national constitutional
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amendment that bans same-sex marriage. for a group of people, team obama, says governor romney can't get its act straight and keeps changing positions, why can't the president get this one right? >> he doesn't have a clear position. president obama doesn't say no or yes, he stays murky taken seems deliberately murky so he can have it both ways where he seems to be indicating to the gay community he's maybe with them and to others maybe against them, so it's unclear. now, next week the president will be giving a commencement address at barnard college where one of the leaders of the gay marriage community will be getting an award. this issue will come up again because we'll see them together on stage presumably, and it will continue coming up until the white house clarifies the president's position. they're going to have to say something at some point to clarify it. i'm sure they know that. so there will be a next step in this story at some point. >> there will be a next step, when they make it they'll know the results of the important vote in north carolina. could come up the convention down the road as well, too.
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>> that's true. we're learning about a dangerous new bomb from al qaeda, one meant to blow up a plane bound for right here in the united states. cnn national security contributor fran townsend is in new york. the fbi has the bomb, what do we know about it, what are they looking for? >> first what they're looking for, one, is it petn, the same high explosive odorless that can be put in a putty used both with in the underwear bomber, abdulmutallab and the cargo plot. and so all those bombs were made by al asiri, in the process in the last few years of training others to make such bombs. can they link this back to him they want to know. is it the same explosive petn. second, one is the detonation device? we've heard over and over the detonation device in the underwear bomber is what failed to let his bomb explode. did they improve that? there have been some different
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things done to this particular device, and they will really analyze the detonation piece to see whether or not they believe this would have been successful. those are the two keys, what they're looking for. john, sources said to me, there's a debate whether or not they'll release the photographs of the bomb. they have them in addition to the device, they've taken photographs. they don't want them to leak. we heard u.n. cry out of washington about the leaks, trying to figure out whether or not they can get the necessary information to screeners and law enforcement without releasing the actual photos. >> they have this one device, the question is, they're studying it now to see if al qaeda and the arabian peninsula made progress, if they have a new trigger, a detonator as you just mentioned. do they think this is one device and they have it or think maybe there are more out there they need to worry about? >> it's interesting, john, and i spoke to this law enforcement source, said to me, that's the problem, we don't know if there were other individuals who volunteered to carry such bombs.
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we don't know if there are additional devices that were built, constructed in the same way. it would be unlike al qaeda to build just one, based on my own experience. they're rightly concerned, if they don't have insight, now there's so much information out there, they worry they'll lose their ability to continue the investigation and learn more. >> national security contributor fran townsend, thanks so much for that new information. we'll continue to follow the story as well. in just a moment presidentby ma may be the most controversial issue of his first time, we grade him on health care. and john mccain weighs in on the romney campaign's latest self-inflicted controversy. he
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tonight as part of our continuing look at the major dividing lines of campaign 2012 we grade president obama on an issue also a major challenge for mitt romney health care. let's first look at the president's major health care promises, one was to deliver near universal access to health care. another was to close an expensive prescription drug coverage gap medicare recipients know as the doughnut hole and another major promise from the president told most families, especially middle class they'd see their health care costs go down.
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>> and if you already have health insurance, we will lower your premiums by $2,500 per family per year. >> so has the president kept those promises? well yes is the answer to sign universal or near universal coverage. you may not like the law but the president signed that into law. yes would be the line here, eventually is the answer when it comes to closing the medicare doughnut hole, the health care law phases in the costly changes between now and 2020 and on cutting premiums if you scored it today it would be a broken promise, costs were up again in 2011 but with we'll score this one in progress. why are we doing that because the true test will come after the health care law is fully implemented in 2014, by then or soon after, the president insists the controversy over his signature initiative will fade. >> but long after the debate fades away, and the pros nost indication fades away and the
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dust settles, what will remain stand something not the government-run system some feared or the status quo that serves the interests of the insurance industry, but a health care system that incorporates ideas from both parties, a system that works better for the american people. >> debate the politics of the here and now tevi troy, servegd served in the george bush administration and melanie barnes, domestic policy in the white house i say before you escaped. let's start first with the premium cost. if you scored it today you'd have to say a broken promise. the kaizer foundation, health care costs up 9% for individuals, 3% for employees, about 1.5% increase is tied to the health care law. i was trying to be fair and say let's wait until the law is fully implemented. does it surprise you that at the moment, was this supposed to happen, costs still going up? >> i think it's important to put this in context.
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if we look over the last few years, costs have been rising consistently, and actually in the last year, 2010 to 2011, we've seen costs still high but going down. what we expect, once health care is fully implemented is for those costs to continue to go down and for families to save in the range that the president promised when he was on the campaign trail, about $2,200 for every family and that's because of all the things that we built into the affordable care act when we put it together. >> you don't like it but will that happen? will premiums start to go down once the law is fully implemented? >> no, john, i don't think that is the case at all. the cbo has shown the cost for a family will go up $2,000 so you'll see that go up and the promise that melanie talked about it going down $2,000, so it's going to be higher. >> why is the cbo wrong? >> we have to look at all the pieces coming together. the first thing we did was go after the consumer protections, make sure that children who had preexisting conditions could get covered but what we've started
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to see now are the provisions that include things like rate review, so if an insurer is going to go up about 10% over its past year's premiums, we have to review that, and make sure that if there needs to be a rebate to consumers that they're going to get it. the same thing with administrative costs. we have to make sure the costs are devoted to people getting better health care, not to the administration of a health care plan. we fully expect those costs to go down and as i said, and consistent with what the president said, that will be about $2,200 worth of savings for every family and we're already projecting for 2012 that costs are going to go down and in fact some lower than the rate of health care inflation. >> another big promise from candidate obama in 2008 was to deal with prescription drug costs. some of this might have been dealt with in the affordable care act but in 2008, senator obama put it this way. >> then we'll tell the pharmaceutical companies, thanks, but no thanks for overpriced drugs. drugs that cost twice as much here as they do in europe and
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canada and mexico. we'll let medicare negotiate for lower prices. we'll stop drug companies from blocking generic drugs that are just as effective and far less expensive. >> senator mccain said he had the same position and it hasn't happened. why? >> look, there's a lot of things that go into the cost of prescription drugs and i think the tax on prescription drugs that you see as a part of the obama aehealth care law will be paid by consumers themselves. i'm not sure this is going to work out the way he wants. in terms of prescription drugs for seniors the real benefit to seniors came from part d, a plan that passed under president bush that for the first time allowed seniors to get prescription drug coverage under medicare. >> conservatives thought it was a huge new entitlement program. >> true some conservatives didn't like it but it was passed with a bipartisan. which is not what you can say about obama's health care law which is very unpopular.
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>> one thing the president was able to do the unfinished business making sure the doughnut hole, the gap that causes seniors to have to pay more is starting to close. what we've seen since the affordable care act pass is seniors are saving about $600 annually on their prescription drug costs. the president referred to we heard in that clip ensuring there are more generics on the market, also included on the affordable care act so people who are buying relatively expensive drugs now because we have ms, they have forms of cancer, because they've got forms of arthritis are now going to see what we call generic biologics on the market that will help them. so consistently we've seen more people with preventative care, this closing of the doughnut hole, more students able to stay on their parents' plans, making sure health care is more affordable and more people have access to it. >> the generic biologics is one piece of a large 2,700 page bill with that is unpopular, likely ruled unconstitutional by the supreme court, extremely
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expensive, about $1 trillion and it appears to be more like $2 trillion and doesn't reduce premiums, doesn't give universal access. there will still be over 20 million people without coverage in 2019. >> i think you have' gotten ahead of yourself on the supreme court. >> it's a generous grading there overall on yourself. >> i think you've gone ahead of yourself on the supreme court. we fully expect it will be found constitutional and beyond that, people appreciate the pieces already coming into play and they'll continue to see more of that. like i said if you're 26 or up to 26 you can stay on your parents' plan. 86 million americans that now have preventative coverage, those are the kinds of things that they like, those are the things that people are going to see more of. >> you can see this is a feisty debate in here. some of you are asking at home why aren't we looking at governor romney's record. next week we get to romney on health care. we'll do this through the election. melody and tevi, appreciate your
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coming. when we come back if there's ever a collective sayings of vice president joe biden something today he said is sure to be in the book and guess what? it's also the truth. we'll get to that. remember an author who wrote a story you heard as a child or perhaps you read it to your own children. ♪
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welcome back. here's kate bolduan with the latest news you need to know there. >> good evening, everyone. let's get you caught up on some
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of the other headlines. the investigation into the military's part in last month's prostitution scandal in colombia concluded the chain of command wasn't notified properly and the offending troops were left on duty but with senator john mccain who was among the lawmakers briefed this afternoon says the military brass was much more prepared to answer questions today than previously right after the scandal broke. >> they came much better, there's still a number of unanswered questions that i think by now we should have had answers to, but overall, at least they gave us a timeline, a lot of the details which, frankly, we should have been informed of a long time ago, right after it happened. >> we'll bring you much more of john king's interview with senator john mccain in just a few minutes. stick around for that one. the chief executive officer of yahoo! is apologizing for padding his resume with an extra college degree. scott thompson said he was sorry for how the issue affected the company and that he takes full responsibility.
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thompson's company bio listed a bogus computer science degree in addition to his actual degree in accounting. yahoo! calls it an inadvertent error. and maurice sendak, children's book author and illustrator who brought us "where the wild things are" died after complications from a recent stroke. president clinton called him a king of dreams and one critic the picasso of children's literature. sendak created 100 stories with fanciful and sometimes controversial tales. he was 83 years old. those stories will live on forever. >> love those books. >> loved reading those books to my nephew. >> i have read them to three now, two of whom don't read them anymore, but one still has a few years ahead of him. up next we'll talk about the romney's latest miscues with someone who has been there, senator john mccain. and a political deal so big, a national election just got called off.
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this half hour today's biggest political deal, so big the national election was just called off, but no, it didn't happen here in the united states. former presidential candidate john mccain has a few thoughts about the latest miscues by the republican nominee this cycle, and the truth about why the white house loves the vice president, even when he says things that make them duck for cover.
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not exactly a picture perfect day for the romney campaign. the republican national committee's hispanic outreach director told reporters the presumptive republican nominee was "still deciding" his immigration policy, quickly corrected, characterized as a slip of the tongue but it was the candidate himself who had a way with words on the auto bailout telling this to an ohio tv station. >> i pushed the idea of a managed bankruptcy and finally when that was done, and help was given, the companies got back on their feet so i'll take a lot of credit for the fact that this industry's come back. >> let's visit with the man who knows about the rough terrain of a presidential campaign, the 2008 republican nominee senator john mccain. senator, forgive me but to hear mitt romney taking credit for the resurgence of the auto industry, isn't that a parallel universe? he was firmly against the bailout. >> being against the bailout, what was a deal they cut basically with the unions. mitt romney and i don't understand why the auto industry, and by the way, not
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ford, who is doing very well, but why gm and chrysler didn't do the normal bankruptcy proceedings as thousands of small businesses all over america had to do, as they faced these rough times. they got a special deal, taxpayer's money, billions and billions of which have not been paid back to the taxpayers and they could have gone through the normal bankruptcy process, as i said, other companies and corporations did, remained viable and could be fine today. taxpayers wouldn't be on the hook. >> tim: companies say they would have run out of cash, there was no private cash available and they would have had to shut down and go through bankruptcy. imagine all the turmoil that would have caused. >> well i wonder why ford didn't have that do that, number one. number two is, i don't accept that. that's the same thing that small businesses all over my state had to do. what was the difference between the small business on central avenue in phoenix and general motors and chrysler? they had obama on their side to
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give the unions a special deal, and not have them go through the same painful process that thousands and thousands of small companies all over america had to go through, because they didn't have the clout with the obama administration. that was fundamentally unfair. >> i spent a fair amount of time with you on the trail in 2008 and something that happens to governor romney yesterday reminded me of a few moments you had in that campaign. listen here, senator. >> we have a president right now that is operating outside the structure of our constitution. i do agree he should be tried for treason, but i want to know what you are going to be able to do to help restore balance between the three branches of government. >> governor romney at the event, senator, chose not to address the "i think he should be tried for treason" part. you took a different apreach when people say people say things outside of the main stream, the norm in 2008.
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the candidate isn't responsible for everybody in the room, i make that clear up front but how does a presidential nominee have to handle those moments? >> you have to be on your toes and a lot of times i did let some things pass just because you're thinking of an answer, you're thinking about who the next questioner is going to be, you're thinking about whether you answered the last question correctly. there's nothing more taxing intellectually during a presidential campaign than a town hall meeting, because every word you say is parsed and repeated. do you remember when i said oh my god "the fundamentals of our economy are strong" you remember that, oh my god. but so you got to really be on your toes and sometimes you really aren't listening real carefully to the question because you're thinking about what you just said or what you're going to say or whatever it is, and mitt romney afterwards said of course no one believes that the president of the united states should be tried for treason. of course he said that. >> it's tougher though in the
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age of instant blog posters. the other side immediately says ah-ha. >> it is tough. it is very, very tough and listen, in the town hall meeting, it is the most difficult challenge because it is an unstructured format, as you know. >> many people might not know that john mccain is not only a republican hand a united states senator but a huge sports center. charles barkley was a forward for the phoenix suns, the last time they made it to the championship. you're picking a fight with him during the broadcast sunday night he saw mitt romney in the boston garden and said you're going down. you tweeted dear charles barkley, don't take it personally, you seem like a nice guy, but you're clueless. mitt romney wins. wanna bet? what do you want to bet? >> whatever he'd like to bet. romney was there enjoying a basketball game. charles barkley basically gave a political ad for president obama, and by the way, he said
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"you're a nice guy, i like you," but he said "you're going down, bro." i'm not sure that that's appropriate at a baseball game, to tell you the truth, when mitt romney was there, trying to enjoy a basketball game, on a rare relaxation moment. i've always enjoyed charles barkley, one of the most entertaining and by the way most gifted and hard-working athletes we've ever had, graced the phoenix suns but the fact is, i don't believe he's right and so i thought it might be appropriate, you know, that's what twittering and tweets are all about. >> i know charles pretty well. maybe i'll get you together for dinner, you can work out the details of that bet. >> it would be a pleasure. >> john mccain, republican of arizona, appreciate your time tonight, sir. >> thanks for having me on. >> just imagine if president obama asked mitt romney to join his administration and in exchange they called off the november elections. well, that's pretty much what's happening in israel today. there was a secret early morning meeting and then an announcement, the israeli prime
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minister benjamin netanyahu calling off the elections and inviting the opposition party to join the government. they say the move is crucial as israel prepares to confront iran over its nuclear program. >> translator: we would like to create a very broad, stable government, in fact the most stable ever. >> translator: this process of the broadest ever national unity government is an historic moment of national unity. this unity is important for the future of the state of israel. >> nathan gutman joins me now, journalist. it's astounding, a right analogy. like obama and romney say call the whole things off and be buddies. >> things they can do with a parliamentary system. he wanted to dissolve the kdnisset in order to strengthen his base but then the last
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moment as the kdnesset was getting ready to vote we sat with the head of kadima and now has 94 members of kdnesset out of 120. he's basically unchallenged. one of his rivals called it the biggest coalition since romania. >> you know aaron david miller, here in the united states, negotiator for the clinton administration in the middle east peace talks, he wrote this on cnn.com, "he's the king of israel and we may just have to get used to it." is benjamin netanyahu the king of israel? >> he's definitely unchallenged. he has the strongest coalition ever. it will be unimaginable to actually defeat netanyahu right now before the elections and probably before because kadima co-opted into his coalition. it would be difficult to see netanyahu go away. >> more likely or less likely or doesn't make a difference in
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late may and june if the prime minister, who has disagreements sometimes with the white house over this, does not believe the sanctions have enough teeth, does not believe iran is giving up anything in the negotiations? when he's facing that decision, do i have israeli military strikes on iran? does this change that calculation? >> not necessarily. inside his own coalition he has himself and defense minister ehud barak support a hard line that israel might be forced to take action against iran even without the united states. somehow he because in mufaz who thinks as former military chiefs israel should wait and let the u.s. take the lead so he has some dispute within his government now although it's easier to deal with that kind of dispute when they're in the government and not the opposition. >> in the new family you might say. >> definitely. >> we'll stay in touch. appreciate it. it's amazing. a fascinating story here in the united states, a top democratic strategist, you know him well if you watch cnn has a blunt message for fellow democrats in an opinion piece published on cnn.com, james
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carville writes "if you want to win in november, democrats, you need to wtfu," we're a family friendly network, wake the you know what up, there is an earthquake, that democratic strategist and our political contributor joins me from new york to explain. you're not known for pulling your punches. >> right. >> i think i detect what you detect. when you meet with the fund-raising guys and meet with the activists they say oh the polls are tight but don't worry, obama's got it in the bag. you think not. >> no, i don't. who in this world would be an incumbent? not just in the united states, an incumbent would feel any sense of confidence? republicans are raising hundreds of millions of dollars, the superpack money is pouring in to them and democrats are saying we're going to win this thing and doesn't make any sense. do i think in the end that we have a good chance to win? yeah, we do but it's going to be a brutally tough election and right now the attitude among democrats that i detect from
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across the board is not anywhere near close to what it has to be. >> here is what you write in an effort, and you've done this in the past, when you think the system needs to be shaken a bit you're not afraid to shake it. "you can shoot five bin ladens and save 10,000 banks and 20 car companies and even pass the most sweeping legislation in modern american history. if people don't think you're connected to their lives and fighting for that i interests, they will vote your tush out of office in a nanosecond. you go on to say, for historical reference, winston churchill, president george h.w. bush in 199. you're saying, james, you think a lot of voters and you study the polling data and travel quite a bit, do they not think the president is "connected to their lives and fighting for their interests"? >> voters see sometimes the president ought to be careful about talking about making progress because while there's progress for some people for a lot of people they've been hurting for a long time and i just think we have to take more of an insurgent kind of mentality here that there are things that the president's trying to do and he's fighting
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every day for the middle class, and this kind of thing, if you remember democrats lost badly in '46 and truman came back and ran against a republican congress and pulled a big upset and won the election in '48, and i'm saying that we have too much, not just the president. i don't want to single out the president here but a lot of people have too much of an incumbent mentality in this party, this sort of attitude we're going to win no matter what and point to stuff like electoral map looks good for us, or ohio looks good and that's not how elections are won. they're won by going out there and getting on the offensive and staying there, and the combination of that and plus the sense that romney is just a really weak, bad opponent is causing i think unwarranted optimism among democrats. >> that's why i wanted to read the sentence you make the churchill and george h.w. bush comparison. i spent time with you in 1992 when you were running against george h.w. bush. do you see the complacency,
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economic statistics were slowly getting better for george h.w. bush. does team obama have the same complacency team bush had and more importantly do you see the attitude in the romney campaign that you guys had in the clinton campaign of '92? >> i think honestly the romney campaign and i pointed it out, i think they're bad and i mean today this auto bailout thing, that was an onion headline when i first saw that and i don't know that the campaign comes up about this, i mean some of the things that romney's done are completely perplexing to everybody. having said that you got to figure at some point he will get better or they will get better, not demonstrated by anything that happened today. i think sometimes when you're an incumbent and you've been there, there's a tendency to defend everything that's happened, and i just think that, and it's not just, i don't want to single out the obama campaign. all across i think among democrats is just a little too much comfort here and what i'm
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trying to do, and you capitalized it just right, i'm trying to create some discomfort here to say look, we're a long way from having this thing in the bag. in fact, being tied in the polls is bad right now, that they have more money and momentum is going against incumbents everywhere in the world. >> always provocative james carville. go to cnn.com to read the entire piece, he's shaking things up. appreciate you coming to talk to us tonight. >> you bet, thank you. we want to bring you breaking news on the foiled terror plot against the u.s. airliner, fran townsend confirmed there was never a threat to the united states because the united states controlled, controlled the would-be bomber. let's bring in fran who say member of the department of homeland security and the cia external advisory board. fran you're saying he was a double agent? >> basically. i mean, absolutely, john. what they said to me is you know, you've heard this language that there was no threat to the united states. you now understand why. the cia working with the saudi
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intelligence service controlled the source and therefore his device and so the american officials were reasonably confident that this was somebody that they could exercise complete control over and so there wasn't a threat to the u.s. in addition, john, we've learned for the first time that it's the same informant who provided u.s. officials with the necessary information to enable the drone operation that killed al quso, al qaeda in the arabian peninsula's external operations chief this ek would understand weekend. they've gotten into the real center of the al qaeda in the arabian peninsula organization so he was privy to sensitive, real time information they could take action on. >> let me ask you this question. this source i assume, is this source now compromised, this source is out? are there additional sources or with this intelligence coup in this case do we pay a price down the road in the sense we've lost that asset? >> we have to assume this asset can no longer be of use inside
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that organization. so we're going to have to work to confirm that, but i mean in all my experience, john, you can't put him back in, and you also have to assume the organization will be more sensitive now to those around them, those inside the organization, and it will be more difficult for american intelligence and foreign intelligence to get that sort of information. so i mean, when you take that together with the fact that as law enforcement source told me earlier today, we don't know if there are additional people who volunteered as the informant did, to carry a device such as this, and we don't know if the bomb makers made more than a single device. so given that environment, you do worry. you can understand why they want to examine this bomb, they want to understand it so they can get the information necessary to screeners for what they're looking for. >> fran townsend with new information, this would be a fascinating spy novel. it is reality.
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thanks so much. coming up why vice president biden is a liability and an asset all at the same time in the race for the white house. [ female announcer ] did you know the average person smiles more than 50 times a day? so brighten your smile a healthy way with listerine® whitening plus restoring rinse. it's the only rinse that makes your teeth two shades whiter and two times stronger. ♪
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if you were with us you heard our cnn contributor deliver a pretty blunt wakeup call. let's talk it over. our chief political analyst is
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here. alice this may be the only time you agreed with him. he says my message is simple, wtfu. you can shoot five bin ladens and pass the most sweeping legislation, if people don't think you are connected to their lives they will vote your toosh out of office. >> he is completely right. people might like president obama. he is a great speaker but the truth is his policies are not working. his liberal policies have failed to make things better for the american people. we have mitt romney in a statistical dead heat with president obama, president obama is in serious trouble. it is not about whether or not people like him. will people trust mitt romney to
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handle the economy. >> sometimes team obama says carville is kind of a cranky guy. he has done something a lot of democrats haven't done and the obama team has won a presidential election. is he right? he was very careful. he said it is not just the president's team. he says the people have to help turn out the vote. >> here is where i agree with james. he is right in that you can only win an election if you act like the under dog. and the president said several months ago that he did feel like the under dog. my sense is in the conversations that i have had with the white house they know how hard this is going to be. they also want to make sure that the record of president obama since he took office is clear and that's where you see him talking about what he has done to help the economy and what he has done for job creation. i agree with james that there has to be a balance. >> can i just say that
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republican superpacs are raising so much money that the obama campaign has not yet been a able to match, mitt romney is going to be able to walk into wall street and raise an awful lot of money. >> absolutely. >> president obama has the benefits of incumbency. he goes to afghanistan. i'm not saying it was just a political trip but those pictures are worth an awful lot to you if you are a candidate. >> i disagree on one thing. the obama administration does not want to set the record straight on his record as president because he has a record of broken promises. that's what he has. we have dismal unemployment numbers. we have 23 million people out of work. the median household income has dropped. >> if you look at everything that they have put out from there 17 minute documentary to the ads put out he is running on
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every single thing he has done. >> they are trying to run on the record to excite the base and come out with negative ads attacking. we are going to have this conversation until november. to the point about complacency, i was in l.a. talking to people and i was laying out a scenario for a very close election. democrats were looking at me like i was nut. i said the 2008 match does not exist anymore. he is an incumbent in tough economic times. >> i do agree -- >> why do they look at you like you are nuts? >> here is why. i think james touched up on this. a lot of democrats and this is not the president's white house or his campaign. a lot of democrats see to james' point what a weak candidate romney is and how out of touch he is that they can't believe. >> or do they have pretty comfortable lives and don't understand if you get to the
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middle of america -- >> that's part of it, as well. >> we have been through a very bruising primary process. they saw this republican primary which a lot of democrats were laughing at saying they are making each other look terrible. and they can't take a step back and understand that mitt romney is going to be a formedable candidate. it depends on how optimistic americans feel about their future. if you look at the polls you know americans don't feel optimist. >> quick time-out on this issue. listen to vice president joe biden speaking today. no truer words have been spoken. >> no one has doubted i mean what i say, the problem is sometimes i say all that i mean. >> only in washington would saying what you mean be considered a problem. >> he is making fun of himself there. he says this happens on live
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television sometimes. your tongue gets out ahead of the brain. >> i'm ready for the campaign or administration to start pulling him back a little bit and less public appearances because it is one thing after another. >> they clearly think he is much more -- >> they think they get more than they give. we'll be right back. ♪
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