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tv   Politics Nation  MSNBC  February 7, 2013 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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a citizen by virtue of his birth in new mexico in 1971. he has been linked with the army psychiatrist who allegedly killed 13 people at fort hood in texas. he was also linked to the so-called underwear bombing trying to blow up an airplane bound for detroit back on christmas in 2010. and then the guy who tried to set off a car bomb in times scare. so what's a commander in chief to do when someone american by birth inspires others to kill innocent americans. we know that this commander in chief gave the order to take him out, which was done with a drone in yemen on september 30, 2011. president obama's decision reminds me of this story. in 1955, israel's first prime
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minister in which he complained about innocent palestinians killed during israeli operations. >> that's "hardball" for now. thank you for being with us. "politics nation" with al sharpton starts right now. thanks, michael. and thanks to you for tuning in. tonight's lead, the president confronting republicans. an energized president obama rallied house democrats for his second term agenda today making clear he's pushing hard for big changes on immigrations and guns.
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and he sat he wants a big deal on the budget. >> i am prepared, eager and anxious to do a big deal, a big package, that ends this g governance by crisis. >> with the rich paying their fair share. >> they recognize that the sequester is a bad idea. but what they've suggested is that the only way to replace it right now is for us to cut social security, cut medicare, and not close a single loophole. i have to tell you, if that's an argument that they want to have before the court of public
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opinion, that is an argument i'm more than willing to engage in because i believe the american people understand -- i believe the american people understand that yes, we need to reduce the deficit, but it shouldn't just be on the backs of seniors. it shouldn't just be on the backs of young people trying to get a college education. >> the president won the fairness debate in the fall. that's what the election was all about. today, the president said that argument will define the fight ahead on guns, immigration, women's rights, gay rights. the whole agenda. >> the question i will ask myself on every item, every issue, is is this helping to make sure that everybody has got a fair shot and everybody is doing their fair share and everybody is playing by the same rules.
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>> this president is gearing up to push for real change. and he's compared to confront the gop if they don't want to compromise. joining me now is congresswoman james shakowski who was at the democratic retreat with the president. she's part of the progressive caucus which produced his own plan this week to trim the deficit without cuts to our safety net. congresswoman, let me go to you first. the president made it clear he'll fight for what he believes is right. will republicans fold yet again? >> well, i certainly hope they will. apparently, john boehner said we're done with taxes. the president was very clear that when meeting the economic and fiscal challenges ahead, that he wants to keep in
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perspective whether the cop or the receptionist was able to make it. and he did contrast it with what the republicans want. and they want to cut medicare and social security. and so he said fine, let's argue this out in the public. and he clearly felt confident that he and we would win if that bat 8 takes place. >> now, the reason i'm asking, congresswoman, is "politico" is reporting that the economy is crumbling. let me quote. >> if that is true and the democratic caucus stands together and the president stands firm, they will have backed down yet again. >> exactly.
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you know, reverend al, that this sequester was never intended to go into effect because the cuts were so devastating. and so this, again, would be a capitulation to the democrats. >> and i think that's the real point, joan. the sequester was put out with such unreasonable cuts, it was to make sure that we never got there. and to act as though now we may have gone there is absolutely unthinkable when it was created in the first place to never have to get into such a drastic place. >> right, it was created to scare both sides, actually. and to overting the gesture. and the president, at least until the end of the year didn't have any partners with who he could cut a deal. i think the president has changed quite a lot. not only was it a big win -- he got big tax rate hikes on the
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very wealthy. not everything he wanted, but quite a lot. he won on the debt ceiling question. the they did lift it. and i don't think they'll ever do that again unless they completely lose their minds. that is no longer a hostage worth taking. and now we'll see what they do on the sequester. i look with faith to the house progressive caucus that any deal that is reached does not include bad cuts. and i think there's still a little danger ahead. but the president has a much stronger hand than he's had since the beginning of his first term. >> congresswoman, can he use that stronger hand to push forward his agenda? americans came out all over this country. many stood in line for hours to see the country move forward. at the end of the day, will we see the agenda and the fairness
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and the ro greprogress that peo voted for coming to be? >> we are seeing that the issue of immigration, we're already seeing some gun support. we're seeing gun owners and nra members are with us. what i'm seeing now is an em bolding president and a caucus that's ready to roll up his sleeves and support his agenda. >> now, joan, at a prayer breakfast today, the president talked about faith and finding common ground. but he says it needs to be something we think about every day. let me play you a part of what he said. >> i do worry sometimes that as soon as we leave the prayer breakfast, everything we've been talking about, the whole time of the prayer breakfast, seems to be forgotten. on the same day of the prayer
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breakfast. i mean, you'd like to think that the shelf life wouldn't be so short. >> isn't that important? we hear all of these nice, noble things at prayer gatherings and all of this about goodwill to men and women. and before the afternoon is over, we see the gridlock, the bickering, the pettiness. again, can we hope that some level when we're seeing now the divisions in the republican party and people on the right saying we've got to get rid of extremists. >> i'm cautiously optimistic, reverend al. he referred to the president as
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our president. i hope that gets a lot of currency on the right wing blogs. and i hope fox news plays that clip a lot. i think he's staking out exactly what he wants. and then we move in from there. so we may get compromise on the dream act or gun control. it doesn't get us everything that we want, but it gets us part of the way there. congresswoman, at the same time, he says he's going to come pain for members of his party. he even talked about democrats taking back the house in the 2014 election. tell me, give me a sense after watching the energy in the room and the reaction in the room at the retreat. watch this. >> i have no doubt that we will
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continue the extraordinary service that we've done already. as a biproduct of that, i would suspect that nancy pelosi is going to be speaker again pretty soon. all right? >> sounded like a raucous reaction. what was the energy like in the room? and what does it mean for the president to say he's going out there and do several fundraisers for democrats. this year. >> well, we were very excited to hear that the president is going to be with us as we head toward the 2014 elections. but we were just depending on the energy in the room. we also have a plan that was very detailed and presented to us on how we're going to get from here to there. to put the gavel in nancy pelosi's plan, clearly the president will have a busy schedule. >> thank you both for your time tonight. >> thank you.
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coming up, the question everyone is talking about. it's tough, it's rude, but it's real. is chris christie too overweight to be president? and is that the sound of a knockout punch? karl rove is down and out. the tea party monster can't be controlled. plus, to kill or not to kill. the hot debate over drones and presidential power is a tough one. my commentary ahead. big show tonight. stay with us. i'm a conservative investor.
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have you joined the "politics nation" conversation on facebook yet? we hope you will. today, everyone is talking about the chris christie controversy. after telling the doctor to shut up about his weight. mark says his policies and politics are fair game. his weight and family should be off limits. jan agrees. i don't like him, but enough is enough on his weight. but earnest says his weight is an issue whether he wants to admit it or not, he needs to get tougher skin. he needs to learn some things if he wants to become president. tone is very important. first, we want to know what you think. please head over to facebook and
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one correction to make. i told you that 91% of americans support back ground checks. that's no longer true. a new poll shows that, in fact, 92% support background checks. 92% of americans agree. 92% of americans can't agree on anything.
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they can't debate whether the toilet seat should be up or down. they agree on this one very important thing. 92% of americans want to make the country safer with background chers. and they have the full support of the president. he made a personal commitment to that and to gun safety. and, today, we learned the first lady will be attending the funeral of hadiya pendleton. she was shot and killed just a week after participating with her band mates in the festivities at president obama's inauguration. this fight is for her. and for all the innocent victims. today, house democrats unvailed their proposal for real gun control. last night, president joe biden talked about the need to act now.
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>> i can't imagine how we will be judged as an individual, judged as a congress, judged as a nation if we do nothing. that i can't imagine. it's simply unacceptable. >> enough is enough is enough. we have to stand up. >> enough is enough. 92% of americans want to see real change. and that change is going to come. joining me now is eric snyder, the attorney general of the state of new york. you're at the top of law enforcement in the state of new york and one of the biggest states in the country. is there real momentum now to fix these gun laws nationwide? >> absolutely. i think that my own experience, traveling around the state talking to people, confirms the
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92% number. and i would add, 92% of americans, that includes a lot of gun owners. we've made real progress here in new york. i think they can make progress here in washington. >> a lot of people around the country think of people just as new york city. but you're the top law enforcement person in the state that has rural as well as urban that has gun shows. so this is not an easy lift, yet you've become one of the champions of this. tell us how you deal with the gun show laws. >> one of the toughest in the country. >> one of the toughest in the country, good example.
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we've got to get action, also, at the federal level. one of the things i've done is we did an undercover sting on gun shows. found that they were not doing the background checks. . nra members has strong advocates. not only did they advocate, they're unsuring 100%. so the people of good conscience who are sports men and women who are gun owners, they understand this. they know background checks keep guns away from criminals and people with mental health problems. that what happened in newtown has galvanized them, as well. i think a lot of the people out there are responsible gun owners that do not feel protected by the leadership in washington. >> isn't the problem about
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enforcement? there are some laws that are on the books that have not been in force. now, toughest in the country right now, new york state. but it doesn't matter if it's people like you, and you're the toughest. >> at least we developed a way with gun shows and it's a major source of guns. we've found a way to replicate nationally. and if the gun show operators like it, if they feel that they're doing their part, we can do that. but we have to get the federal laws fixed. we're not even allowed to get information from the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives. the laws in washington are with handcuffs. the time for change is coming to
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washington. you see the president. you see the commitment there. >> you see 11 states are considering gun laws. you're going to washington soon. what's your message going to be to the nation? you're a national figure in this area. >> i'm working with our federal counter parts. i'm taking the information on what we've been ablg to do at gun shows. we have some other ideas that can help the national campaign. but from his re-election campaign, he's going out, he's advocating, he's using his voice. if the people are fairly represents, we're going to get
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change in washington. i'm going down there to talk to my federal colleagues, help them do whatever we can do to rally support. >> since newtown, 1612 people have been shot and killed in the 55 days since the newtown tragedy. 26 of those day were children under the age of 12. they're not making headlines the same way, but that's 29 people a day. after newtown, we're still in the middle of a crisis here. >> newtown has galvanized a lot of people in the country. but 29 people a day, every day, like the little girl in chicago, you see this, and disproportionately in poorer communities, this is an epidemic. if this were automobiles, we would do what we did with cars. but because of the opposition of some militants who have been really shortsighted and they're losing support, i'm telling you,
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rev, of gun owners across america as well as others, they have limited the federal government's ability to act. we are going to overcome that in the months ahead. i'm confident that we can do it. >> well, we're making progress. i want you to come back and talk about that. >> love to do it. >> all right. thank you and thank you for your time tonight. the monster they created won't go away. the tea party is revolting against karl rove. oh, how the mighty have fallen. and chris christie tells a doctor to shut up about his weight. i have something to say about this and it may surprise ewe. [ whispering ] i've always preferred the crème part of an oreo.
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. a former white house doctor tells chris christie he's too fat and that he might "die in office." how did the mild-mannered governor take it? see for yourself. >> i find it fascinate iing tha doctor in arizona who's never met me, never examined me, never reviewed my medical history or records, knows nothing about my family history, could make a diagnosis from 2400 miles away. she must be a genius. if she wants to get on a plane and come here to new jersey and
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examine me and review my medical history, i'll have a conversation with her about that. until that time, she should shut up. >> okay, it's on in jersey. stick around for that. >> having her is amazing. >> sometimes miracles get messy. >> done even more to move us. because vitamin d3 helps bones absorb calcium, caltrate's double the d. it now has more than any other brand to help maximize calcium absorption. so caltrate women can move the world.
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new single serve cafe collections from maxwell house now available for use in the keurig k-cup brewer. always good to the last drop. the republican party is excited about their rising star. there he is. "time magazine" calls marc marco rubio the republican savior. the real story is karl rove on the ropes. he was the gop king maker. bush's brain. the boy genius. but now he's on the verge of a political knockout. full blown attack mode after he vowed it's too extreme to win elections. hours ago, donald trump tweeting, karl rove is a total loser.
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money given to him might as well be thrown down the drain. karl rove and his army have launched a crusade against me. nobody can bully me out of the u.s. senate. radio talkers are turning on him, as well. >> i want to invite as many people as possible. to join the voices and the forces of liberty, not the forces of big government and back room deals and croney kapt lichl, illustrative of karl rove. >> this newspaper article about karl rove's intentions is only serving to unite the tea party
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in ways, even now, it hasn't been. it is energizing the tea party. >> rove is trying to energize the tea party. but he's the one on the ropes. >> joining me now is former congressm congressman barney frank. where is the republican party now in your mind? still locked up by extremists or no? >> it's an important dynamic in america today is the effort by the more traditional conservatives to take the party back from the tea party. but they really are reaping what they sowed. these are the people who loved having the tea party be irresponsible and extreme when
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that attack was going against democrats in 2010. now it turns out the american people having seen what the tea party really means, don't like it. think it's a kind of ek treemism and a nasty attitude, personally. so now you have karl rove and the others. republican primary voters are the ones that have chosen these people. it's a conservative group trying to take over. this is the most interesting group in america today. i would say this. parties lose elections. i have never seen in all the years in politics that had a party go from defeat in a president election to worse and worse and worse. to being wrong on issues, to
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being devicive. i can't think that there's many americans today with all of these internal, vicious fights is incapable of governance. >> when you look carely at his stances, he boegsed about anti-gay groups. he suggested soets shouldn't tolerate same-sex marriage, won't say if they should be protected under the immigration law. so even with the moderate kind of image as a savior, when you dig into the details policiwise, very conservative kind of guy. no question, it reminds me of a great philosophy of the 20th
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century with whom you were familiar, henny youngman and his great line, how's your wife? >> compared to what? with these guys, it's the quote that ronald reagan once said. this is a case where the right hand doesn't know what the extreme right hand is doing. but let's look at rubio. i heard him this morning as i was driving to make a speech in massachusetts. and he was being critical of president obama because he wants citizenship for immigrants. and rubio said he can push getting them citizenship in a straight forward way. first of all, that's an angerer knowledgement that his party is still not willing to do the decent thing. the notion that we would have people in this country and they would be working and paying taxes. they couldn't vote. they couldn't be citizens. what is that doing as a concept of democracy. and here's rubio acknowledging this split.
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they were just, i saw, background checks for guns and social security and medicare. let's remember, they were talking about code and entitlement before, that means reducing the amount people get on social security. with all the talk about ine quality, let's remember, social security and medicare are the two most effective of any programs in american history and the republican party, led by paul ryan and the others, is still trying to undermine those. >> they had officially sent to mayor joe white. what does our appointment mean to the agency carrying out the dodd-frank act in terms of his
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rules? >> it's very important. first of all, we have this very important piece of the bill which is called the volka rule that says that banks that get insured deposits should not be engaged in risky kind of business. it's a very important piece to the bill that has to be adopted by several agencies, including the security and exchange commission. the problem has been he should have made that appointment a while ago because he knew that the out going share, mary shapiro, a very good person, was quitting. and she's a tough loir. let me defend her. some people said oh, well, after being the u.s. attorney, she went and she represented people in the business community. well, liberals should not be saying that if you represent people that you don't approve of, that makes you a bads person.
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we want critical defense attorneys to represent some of the worst people in the world. when is security and exchanges commission was established in the '30sroosevelt, he appointed a man deeply involved, joseph p. kennedy. he said hey, look, guys, i know all of the tricks because i've play ds them. now they're over. can i say on the dodd-frank bill, one important point. when we passed that bill in june, 2010, the financial community and the republicans said this is going to be the end of the markets. this is going to destroy the financial community. in the 2 1/2 years since that bill became law, the dow jones industrial average has gone up 40%. we have just had one of the best periods in american history in the stock market. and i'm not saying that the passage of the bill caused it, but the notion by trying to get
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good regulation, let me say this. if that's undermining, there's a lot of people that would like to be undermined. >> well, the chairman conceived it and the president is fighting to protect it. former congressman bar knee frank, thanks for your time tonight. >> thank you, al, as usual. >> ahead, for the first time ever, there are two african americans serving in the senate at the same time: and chris christie's walgt? it's a red hot controversy that everybody is taking sides. in america today we're running out of a vital resource we need
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woef a new senator from massachusetts. he took office today, he took the official oath on the senate floor. governor of patrick took his former chief of staff to temple and then came the ceremonial oath. >> okay. here we go. do you solemnly swear to support
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and defend the country, the united states, against all enemies, foreign and domestic, where you will bear true faith and allegiance to the same, that you take this obligation freely without any mental reservation and faithly charge the duty which you are about to enter, so help you god. ? >> i do, so help me god. >> congratulations. >> well, guys, welcome to the senate. >> welcome to the senate. it was a big moment for him and his family. but it was also a big day for progress. for the first day ever, there are two aftrican americans serving in the senate at the same time. it brings the total number of black senators in u.s. history to 8.
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it's the question everyone's talking about. is new jersey governor chris christie too overweight to be president. that's an awkward subject. it set off christie's style of words. >> i'm a republican. i like chris christie a lot. i want him to run. i'd just like him to lose weight. i'm a physician before i am a democrat or republican and i just worry about this man dying in office. >> my children saw that last night. and she sat there on tv and said i'm afraid he's going to die in office. my 12-year-old son comes to me
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last night and says dad, are you going to die? >> it's almost like a time bomb waiting to happen. >> if she wants to get on a plane and come here to new jersey and ask if she wants to examine me and review my medical history, i'll have a conversation with her about that. until that time, she should shut up. >> so is he too big? or is it none of her business? or anyone's business outside of the governor's family. let me bring in joe madison and dana millbank. thanks for being with us. >> hi, reverend. >> i want to hear from both of you on this. is christie too big to be president? is it valid? >> well, let me go with somebody, myself, who, at one point, al, i weighed almost 300 pounds. a doctor has the ability to look at you, as my doctor did in his waiting room and said you're not leaving this office until we examine you. here's what's going to happen, joe. one day you're going to be
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speaking somewhere and you're going to fall down dead. you're going to die. and let me tell you, that was enough incentive for me to go in there and get examined and to lose weight. you remember our beloved friend, maynard jackson? >> yeah, former mayor of atlanta. >> thank you. and suffered from morbidity. christie may be a young man, but as he grows older, these morb morbidities are going to catch up with him. here's the point i have want to make. stress and overweight do not go together. and there is no one who understands the presidency of the yielts that can say you're not going to be under-stressed. that's exactly what that doctor was doing and the doctor did, he and his family, a favor. >> well, dana, joe's doctor told him in private. not over television. is this a fair, public debate? or public scrutiny and questioning in terms of a potential presidential
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candidate? >> well, i'll lever it to you two skinny guys to say whether that's a medically valid point. but, you know what, when it comes to who's going to be the president of the united states, it's not up to the doctors. it's up to the voters. and in a political sense, people are saying christie's weight doesn't matter. he's been able to joke about it. he's made it an asset. he's made it an actual warl sense saying somebody seriously overweight may have difficulties with the riggers of a presidential campaign, much less being in the white house. but the real problem chris christie is going to have is not the size of his belly, it's the policies he's got in his brain. >> yeah, no doubt about that. but, joe, you were almost 300 pounds. i was over 300 pounds. and now i'm down to around 142.
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and i know that people really in our culture are kind of dated. when i lost weight, people send me tweets. are you all right? i'm healthy now. they should have been asking me that when i was obese. >> look, i had the same thing, as you remember. they look and say oh, you're losing too much weight. something must be wrong. >> and i understand that. but the issue was in the public. look, you're president of the united states. look at president obama. he smoked. and he had the discipline to stop smoking. i bet you if chris christie decided this is not funny, this is nothing to joke about, i am not the poster board for health. let's just understand that. he would also show the country that he is disciplined.
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now, the other thing is -- now, he's from new jersey, and i love the people from new jersey, but this new jersey attitude that i can call a doctor who's really advising me to get healthy and just brush him off is not going to play well, i believe, in iowa. it might play well in trenton, but i bet you it doesn't play well in pioria. >> that's a good question. in terms of his shooting from the hip, off-the-cuff kind of snappy remarks, shut up, bullying teachers. will that play nationally for a president? some things at one level may not make it to the next level. do you want a head of state that is going to look across the table at another head of state and tell him to shut up? >> well, first of all, reverend al, congratulations. you said tonight that you are not half the man you used to be.
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and i was not aware of that. >> but i'm twice the trouble i used to be. >> in has been politically chris christie's asset. he's got terrific numbers in new jersey, left, right and center. but i think people like that sense of candor that they hear nationally. i think that sort of thing works well. now, conventionally, people would say a fat guy can't get elected. that's why we always looked to see what al gore's weight was. i think christy takes that out of the equation politically because he's handled it so well. >> well, dana, i've got to tell you what bothers me about this. chris christie, oh, that's really great. when president obama is like that, he's uppity. that's what bothers me about this double standard. >> can you imagine president obama telling a doctor to shut
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up? >> thank you. >> it does seem like it's a different standard for different politicians, wouldn't you say, dana? >> well, certainly being from new jersey or new york, you're going to get a little more leeway there. the people he's got to impress are the republican primary voters. he's got a whole bunch of policies that are not inline with the tea party. he seems to be able to, at least so far, to overcome that because he's seen as being plain spoken. you're correct that it doesn't work quite as well for president obama. and i should point out i think he is still sneaking the cigarettes here and there. >> i don't want to get in that one, we'll do that another night. but i will say that working with the president and working with democrats, might be a lot of
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weight to carry around in a republican primary. no pun intended. joe madison and dana millbank, thanks for your time this evening. . the big debate on presidential power and drones. my commentary next. my mother made the best toffee in the world. it's delicious. so now we've turned her toffee into a business. my goal was to take an idea and make it happen. i'm janet long and i formed my toffee company through legalzoom. i never really thought i would make money doing what i love.
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