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press." \ s mas nb c \e good stunned afternoon. could there about breakthrough? >> so this is a major obstacle that's overcome. >> we it have a ways to go but we're closer. certainly. two top senators from the so-called deal of eight, turning immigration reform into a reality. on guns, not so much. >> be bold, be courageous. please support background checks. >> gabrielle giffords still fighting and she's not alone.
we'll talk to the woman who's almost always at the former lawmaker's side. a new update this afternoon on nelson mandela's condition. a live report straight ahead. first, though, our top political headlines on this sunday. president obama spent easter morning at st. john's church in washington. he walked to sunday services from the white house with the first lady and their daughters. the president will head to denver this wednesday to push for stricter gun control laws. republican senators marco rubio and rand paul have already threatened to filibuster proposed legislation. mark kelly, husband of former congresswoman gabby giffords had a message. >> 94% of his constituents support a universal background check. for senator rand paul, it's about 83% in kentucky. they should listen to their constituents and certainly shouldn't be getting in the way
of the process. >> and the deal on immigration reform. it appears closer than-of-business and labor workers came to an agreement. hoping legislation will be finalized this week. then head quickly to the floor for debate. an optimistic south carolina saturday lindsey graham on cnn this morning. >> exception the we have an agreement between business and labor, between ourselves. it has to be drafted. rolled out next week. yes, i believe it will pass the house because it secures our borders, controls who gets a job as to the 11 million, a pathway to citizenship, but it will be earned, it will be long and it will be hard, and i think it is fair. >> with more, the immigration deal in the works, we turn to a political editor for "the grio" and the goldie taylor project, and all of whom msnbc contributors as well. and peter alexander. our man at the white house, here in new york city for us on this
easter sunday. good to see you always. >> as you. >> why savannah this guest worker deal being held as such a significant breakthrough? >> reporte . >> as its being hurl heralded, not so fast. the guest worker program has for long been the holdup. this has been the issue so many times before. the fight often being between the laborer and business communities. the afl-cio and changer of commerce, negotiating with one another. it sounds like they've resolved the pay scale in the situation. the labor groups don't want it to be too low to drag down the pay rates and the business community doesn't want it to be too high that they would have to spend too much money on this community. >> peter alluded to it. senator marco rubio. issued a statement of caution. encouraged by the statements, but senator rubio says the talks of a final deal being done, that
that kind of talk sk a tad premature saying isn't a statement, in order for this process to succeed, this process cannot be rushed on done in secret. ben weigel, how crucial is senator rubio to negotiations and what could derail this thing? >> crucial, he's been the conservative whisperer on the issue. when it came up a couple months ago, spent a lot of days on talk radio. one by one. rush limbaugh, and those destructive to immigration reform in 2005 and 2006. republicans are able to walk on it, go back home. so it seems to me with success so far, you're not really hearing much anger at republicans from constituents on this anymore. releasing a statement like that, he's done it a couple of times.
he's not walking away, just reiterating. hearing our conservatives, hearings on immigration, an open process. never an indication we're not going to get that. we need negotiations to happen before that process in the senate. so far i think the base, anything could change once we see the details. so far they actually have been calmed by rubio. again, the devil could be in the details. and goldie, a major negotiator, confident about progress being made and so soon. senator schumer on "meet the press" this morning. take a listen. i am very, very optimistic we will have an agreement among the eight of us next week. senator leahy has agreed to have extensive markup and debate on the bill in april, and then we go to the floor in, god willing in may. i think we're on track. >> a pretty specific timeline there, goldie taylor. how likely are lawmakers to
stick to that timeline? >> i think in this case, very likely. especially given the idea we have all of these up front negotiations going on between the afl cio and the u.s. chamber of commerce, two groups at odd in a legendary matter. to have them come together on wages at at least and see they'll probably come together on any number of other issues. the stickler will be the pathway to citizenship. i think that's what tea party republicans and most conservatives are most concerned about. on the liberal side of the table, most concerned about, you know, making sure that people are honored for their humanity, they do have a right to per sue citizenship, a nation of immigrants and value what they bring to the workforce and to us culturally. there are a number of other issues outside of just the wage agreement that have to happen before we even get to the floor of the senate. >> let's switch gears. national republicans committee prepping for 2012 mid-term
elections already. compiled a report analyzing past missteps, if you will. one major area they decided they needed to work on was what's they dubbed poor communication support. first of aural, what what it an plan to fix it. >> out-hustled in the 2012 campaign between president obama, and this goes back to a conversation taking place inside the republican party across the board. whether the message needs changing or are the medium. the way they handle this. the growth and opportunity project, trying to grow the republican party in general. right now 2014 they see a window of opportunity. democrats will have 21 seats in the senate they're going to have to defend versus about 14 for the republicans. a lot of those are in red-ish
states. they feel strongly this is a window of opportunity for them. >> to retake the senate majority, the gop needs to pick up six seats. democrats, of course, they're losing several popular veteran democrats to retirement. like west virginia's john d. rockefeller. michigan's carl levin. iowa's thomas harkin. how real is the possibility democrats become a senate minority in 2014? >> a very real possibility. you have a lot of democrats retire, not very strong in these red states. mary landrieu in louisiana, mark pryor in arkansas. probably see advantage. a report in "the post" republicans are worried about specifically avoiding todd akin-style candidates who make dumb comments about rape or abortion in which they lose races republicans could win. they're talking about message. specifically getting candidates to talk about abortion, gay marriage, sensitive issues in very intelligent ways and not
stupid ways. remember bobby jindal, we can't be the stupid party anymore. that's what they're talking about. >> dan, perry alluded to something that caught my attention from the nrsc report. the idea the nrsc will remain neutral unless an unelectable fringe candidate emerges. what might that mean for republican primaries in 2013 and 2014? >> a change in the policy ar 2010. the reason rnc were on the sidelines, a negative reaction from the republican base to those criticizing rand paul and taking out candidates with a better chance. i think they still prefer outside groups to do most of this. go back to the rnc reform report peter was talking about before. they made reference to they want third parties groups to do. not specific. one thing they'd like to happen, groups like karl rove's new outgrowth of men crossroads to
soften up the unelectable candidates. they don't want steve king and -- very different candidates, keep in mind, justin match is further appeal of domo. steve king is a voice against immigration reform. very different, but both cases, they might have people who are more tested. i think they prefer to see back, to sit back and watch the people brought down elsewhere. john cordon -- sorry. now it's jerry moran doesn't like to be in a position of fighting with the entire conservative infrastructure. red state dotcom with talk radio. they want the money to come from somewhere else and destroy these people first. >> one blogger put it yesterday or the day before, a coordinated campaign to keep the crazies in the closet. goldie, before i let you get out of here, i want to talk about guns. president obama heading to colorado wednesday. once again, the push for stricter gun control. a group of republicans have threatened to filibuster gun
legislation when it comes to the senate floor and also, goldie taylor, there seems to be a growing course of folks out there starting to think that the white house and gun control advocates may have misplayed their hand on this. what do you make of the white house strategy after newtown? >> i've got concerns really for all of it. after newtown you heard the -- the nra completely radio silent. because they wanted us to get far enough away from the issue so they could have their day legislatively. that's exactly what's happening. we've got's 100 days away from newtown and people are not nearly as fervent as they were about the issue, and that's the important part about this. i think, frankly, the obama administration and democratic leadership may have waited too long. dianne feinstein was right about one thing. soon as the session opened she put her bill on the table. we should have done that comprehensively while public sentiment was in our direction. now certainly by and large
people want background checks. they want a ban on high-capacity magazines. but there are strong constituencies out there. the nra among them. gun owners of america, another one of them. they are pushing in ways that legislators hadn't seen quite before and many of them especially conservatives demes from more red leaning states are afraid to go ahead and do the right thing. >> goldie taylor, perry bacon, dave weigel and our white house were correspondent peter alexander. thanks sow all f to all of you easter as well. >> thanks. >> happy easter. up next, if it's not her husband at her side, our next guest is right there's with gabrielle giffords. one of the closest aides for the push for gun control that does not mean because you've had a failure in your personal life you cannot step back into life again. >> there he is. mark sanford. we'll handicap his chances in tuesday's runoff race and later,
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shame on us if we've forgotten. i haven't forgotten those kids. shame on us if we've forgotten. >> president obama goes on the road this week to preach a familiar sermon trying to make sure that folks haven't forgotten and convince americans to support changing the nation's gun law us. it looks like public support for instructor laws main waning. a cbs news poll last week found 47% of americans favorstricter
gun control laws. in december, 57%. with us, chief of staff of former congresswoman gabrielle giffords. it's got to see you nice to see you, too. >> you have seen the poll numbers. three months after newtown. what happened to the momentum? >> well, look, i mean, it's important to mention that although using buzz words like gup control may have dropped in the poll, the specific support for policy like universal background checks hasn't dropped at all. over 90% of the country still supports that kind of are common sense reasonable solution. we need to be careful how we're talking about that. i don't think momentum swayed at all. in fact, i think americans are anxious to see this policy, you know supported by congress and signed into law, but, look, there's a process in congress, and we all know this sort of congress we're dealing with today. so, you know there's a level of impatience,
and i understand that. >> pia, your contention is the momentum has not dropped off at all. the thing is, after newtown we were talking about stricter controls on high-capacity magazine clips. talk about assault weapons ban. neither of those things will happen now and it looks like the university background check is not necessarily a done deal either. how do you explain the chasm between the polling and political will or lack there it of. >> that is what we're strug aring with. the reason mark and gabby entered this debate, their westerners, gun owners and moderates and believe the congress should be coming up with reasonable solutions to support and address the problems that this country is struggling with, but that's a good question. i mean, i think the elected officials today in congress and in the senate are going to have to think very hard about what's going to happen to them next if
they don't support these solutions. there's nothing extreme or radicaling a universal background checks. it's quick, easy, not burdensome and the most important thing to do to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. we'd like to snap our fingers and see this proposal enacted into law for sure. after the gruesome murder of 20 young children and 6 of their adults in that school, i mean, yeah. i understand the impatience, at the same time, there sass procedure in the halls of congress that takes some time involving committees and debates and votes, and on some level, we have to sort of let that play out. but we're meeting with folks regularly, and telling them, look, we need to do something now. >> mark kelly today, he told fox news that while the pro-gun lob hey been effective blocking congress, the american people insist on action. take a listen. >> the leadership of the nra has
done a very good job over many, many years of controlling the debate on this issue. but one thing that is different now is the fact that we had 20 first graders murdered in a classroom along with 6 educators. i mean, that's unacceptable. the american people want something done on this. >> pia, ho hat nra, as mark kelly pointed out, how have they been able to do such a goodell job goodell -- a good job at controlling the debate? >> one simple answer, there has not been a countervoice to the nra ever. that's what we're doing. we are not coming at this from a partisan perspective, it's from the middle of the country, the middle of the partisan spectrum. we're not looking to score political points. we're looking to make real change here, and i think that voices like mark and gabby that are credible in this country, that are going to talk sensibly about how we can address some of these issues while at the same time supporting second
amendments rights will be well-received and the nra will have to deal with that. >> you are an alumnumb of bart college and former congresswoman giffords will give the commencement speech there along with her husband mark kelly. how is gabby doing? >> doing very well. still making improvements regularly and working hard at it. she's doing really well. >> thank you so much, pia. americans for responsible solutions. happy easter to you and happy passover. >> happy easter to you and to my family in upstate new york. i shall not see and i will not accept the nomination of my party for another term as your president. >> coming up, the story behind that surprise announcement 458 ye -- 45 years ago today. this from today's white house. it's march madness. time to go to the game. you're watching msnbc, the place
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ah, president obama kicking back enjoying a little march madness last night. mr. obama took in the syracuse-marquette game at the verizon center. syracuse topped marquette. moving on to the final four. it's worth noting neither of those team was actually in the president's bracket. into the political playground we go on this sunday. actor harrison ford will drop by the white house this week. first lady michelle obama is hosting members of the cast and crew of "42" a new film about jackie robinson. the first african-american major league baseball player. ford plays baseball executive branch ricky in that film. tomorrow's white house easter egg hunt, we may get to see more than just a few happy kids. there will be celeb tips as well making cameos, including nascar driver danica patrick and
"american idol" stars jordin sparks and jessica sanchez to name a few. how soon until we hear the words, this is your captain speaking you are free to crisis around your internet. first to palmetto state. they never disappoint. sanford's political comeback gets mighty personal. this is msnbc. the place for politics. wait a sec! i found our colors.
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another first for pope francis. at least 300,000 gathered in st. peter's square to hear him speak. imeminence called for peace involving the middle east, syria and mali. bring you the latest developmentsing on a story we continue to follow here at msnbc this weekend. the south african government moments ago issued an update on
formersouth african president nelson mandela. what's the government saying now about mr. men d-- mr. mandela's kl condition? >> reporter: the government indicating this news is important enough, reassuring enough for the south african people and millions watching and listening around the world that they wanted to get this out to say that nelson mandela has had am restful day, and that his condition continues to improve further. so further positive news they will be pleased to be able to reassure people. we saw today, craig, how much people are praying for nelson mandela at sunday services across the country. one person in the congregation saying we wish him many, many more years here with us. so the country really watching and waiting for this news and the government thinking it really needs to get this out.
we also saw, by the way, his wife, her car arrived as a hospital, the medical car hospital near pretoria. it's not known whether nelson mandela is at that hospital, but her car was seen there. there have been no scene of anyone near his home in johannesburg. this is his fourth day in the hospital and it looks as if they may spend quite some days yet there. doctors clearly will want to monitor his condition, his lung condition, to ensure that he can improve fully, because as we've been saying the last few days, craig, he has been in and out of hospital in recent months on several occasions with breathing difficulties. this time we now know he had the fluid around his lung drained. taken to the hospital late wednesday. that operation, that intervention, appears to be having been successful. he is steadily making progress. >> so, again, at this point it sounds like he is probably going to have to spend at least
another few nights in the hospital there? >> reporter: yeah. that seems likely. there was one report today suggesting that. might be a number of weeks, but that isn't clear whether or not that really is the case. the chances are, the likelihood is, that his doctors are monitoring his condition as you'd expect from a man who is 94. remember, he's had this lung condition ever since he was a political prisoner with tuberculosis. it has been an ongoing illness. clearly, in the last few months. doctors will want to carry on monitoring. you can imagine at the same time, nelson mandela himself would be saying i would like to go home as soon as i'm fit and able to. >> the highlights here. restful condition improving. but he is going to be spending at least few more nights in the hospital as we continues to be treat ford pneumonia. keir simmons, our man on the ground. thank you so much for that. here's a quick look at some
of the other stories making news around the nation. a texas district attorney and his wife were shot dead in their home this weekend. police say they found the bodies of mike mclelland and his wife is yesterday. they're not releasing any details about a motive or suspects just yet. a district attorney from mclelland's office was also shot and killed earlier this year. at this point, in word on a connection between the shootings. a nasty car crash in multiple states. in nevada five members of one family killed yesterday when an 18-year-old driver rear-ended their van. police arrested the teenager and believe he might have been driving under the influence. in new york, 12 people are in the hospital, all hurt from an out of control car slammed into a brooklyn bus stop. back to politics. south carolina voters head to the polls tuesday to choose a republican candidate for a vacant house seat. former governor and congressman
mark sanford, who resigned in disgrace is the favorite against former charleston councilman curtis bostic. to the political war room. jamie harrison, vice chair for the democratic party. gand to see you both. we don't have you in the same studio sitting next to each other. kind of a disappointment. >> happy easter. >> sanford won 37% in the first round of the primary pshgs bostic a distant second. 13% reported by the hill. how do you think tuesday's runoff will turn out? >> it's certainly mark sanford's to win, but they had a spirited debate tuesday night. curtis bostic, former marine, solid base, trying to arrest the ones on the anti-sanford vote. mark san frpd needed the top
4078. at 37 or 38. curtis has the ability to get the anti-sanford votes, but curtis has his work cut out for him. neither campaign has a tremendously well-organized get out the vote campaign. it's mark's to win. just likes the general election and jamie will cover that in a minute, these low turnout models you have, you can throw a lot of national statistics out the window. only the hard base it going to vote. it's sanford's to anyone a tight race, but curtis could catch him. >> jamie, how can curtis bostic, how can he not be the guy that embarrassed himself in the state the way mark sanford did? one would think that mark sanford would be politically vulnerable? >> well, craig, he is, and we'll see that vulnerability when he's the, the republican candidate in a general election. you know, mark sanford has this core of hard-core right-wing
republicans who support him, and he always has, and probably always will have that. but, you know, generally, the bulk of the people in south carolina are not happy with his flawed governorship, and his performances when he was a member of congress. and so, you know, we look forward on the democratic side to facing either mr. sanford or mr. bostic, but it doesn't really matter. because in the end, elizabeth kohlberg bush will be the vishgt. >> you would probably prefer a sanford race? >> oh, listen, you know, if it's governor sanford, let's bring the game on. it will be a fun race to watch. >> the issue of sanford's disappearance, affair, resignation. take a listen. >> that does not mean because you've had a failure in your personal life that you cannot step back into life again.
>> a compromised xnd not wh cant what we need. >> sanford, if he is the candidate, the embarrassing sequence fallout will all of those thing dominate may's special election? >> well, yes, it will. two snacenarios there. jamie harrison could vote for mark sanford, he would, and they'd like to have him. i think you have to look, mark san nard been successful electorally. lulu bush is attract ir, a democrat in south carolina -- >> hey, lulu, wases th s thaes ? did you just go with lulu? >> that's the name they call her down in the low country. >> lulu bush. did you knee? that was news to me. i didn't know they called her lulu. >> sure jamie did. >> yeah. elizabeth's close friends and family refer to her at lulu. so --
>> i guess you're close friends and family. >> tell you, craig, the thing to take a look. curtis bostic, mark sanford will be a national target. the democrat congress' committee is down there licking their chops waiting on this race. they will move in operatives out of the old obama for america campaign to do the get out the vote that they are very, very good at. so it will be nationalized if governor sanford does win the race. if it's curtis bostic, they'll pack up the tent and go. they need governor sanford. he'll be harder to beat than then think. that's what they're waiting on, a special election with an avactive knchtsd jamcandidate. >> how strong a lulu? >> extremely hard. i know he said we need sanford,
we can have bostic as well. he has enough fodder in his background to make that a very, very competitive race. this is a guy who believes social security is unconstitutional. but elizabeth is a great, great candidate. we couldn't have found a better candidate. this is a businesswoman who believes in -- in sitting down and working with whomever. doesn't matter if it's democrats or republicans, to basically bring jobs back here to south carolina. to do what a congressperson needs to do. you know, if we send mark sanford or bostic, it's all about saying no, all again. and -- go ahead. >> i want to excuse you, i want to talk about something else. republican the in the south especially, seem to oppose president obama's health care reform, more republicans are giving in to president obama's health care overall, and opposition block remains across the south, according to the
huffington post, including governors who lead some of the poorest states in this country, and unhealthiest states in this country as well. nikki haley one that's opposed to extending medicaid at all. why does the south, including our state, date lynn dawson, remain so vehemently opposed to what amounts to free money? >> there's never any free money. craig, what i see in this debate is, and one of the things i seldom agree with former president bill clinton, but right after the election cycle this time to the democratic caucus in virginia said one thing that they're going to have to do is correct some of the mistakes in thee fordable care act. it is unaffordable in a lot of places and in the deep south, nikki haley is right. so are some of the other governors. we're trying to figure out exactly how we can afford it. it's only free for a short period of time. we have a constitutional
responsibility in south carolina to balance the budget. governors in the deep south will have to make decisions. do they cut school buss? cut funding in education? cut funding in police protection? that's a big decision, because they have to balance their budgets. we have no place else to get that dollar it needs to match in south carolina later on. it's being responsible governing and an evolving question will testimony will ends up as far as the rule of law. >> is the calculation an economic one or is the calculation a political one? >> craig, this is all politics. you know, i've even talked to some members of the republican legislature, and they've said that to me privately. i mean, you even had a member of the republican legislature here in south carolina who said, you know, it's good politics, because, to oppose the black guy that's in the white house right now, and i don't like to bring racial issues into it, but in essence, you know, for many
people that's what it all boils down to, because obama's name is attached to this and it was his idea, then they oppose it. when you look at the numbers, it just makes plain sense, as president bill clinton said in the convention, it's about arithmetic. 500,000 people in this state would be covered. $11 billion influx into the south carolina economy and thousands of people employed because of this. just makes sense, and the state of south carolina for its first three years would not pay one brown penny. >> jamie harrison and mr. president dawson good to see you both. still to come, the good book gets a big boost. we're going it look at how and why on this easter sunday. first, though, the day we learned that the last three-letter president would no longer be seeking a second term. this is msnbc. the place for politics. acceler-rental.
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shall not seek and i will not accept the nomination by my party of your term as president. >> president lyndon baines johnsonen in 1978. he would not seek a second full term. president johnson's withdrawal opened the door for his vice president, hubert humphrey's candidacy. a contentious primary that gave us the candidacies of eugene mccarthy and robert f. kennedy. mum fr humphreys managed to win the nomination but lost to richard nixon. flashback, 2005. the issue of right to die had everyone taking a side. at center of the battle, terri schiavo a woman in a persistent vegetative state since 1990 and
only surviving thanks to life support. it started when her husband petitioned to remove her feeding tube. schiavo's parents objected believing she was still conscious. anger grew on both sides. so did the crowd of supporters and cameras outside teri's hospice. the find ended on this day in 2005 whennal terri schiavo died after a court ruling to remove her feeding tube some 14 days earlier. this is how "nightly news" reported it. >> terri schiavo died at 9:05 eastern time this morning. her death ended a struggle going back 15 years it did not stop the fight between the two sides in her case. we begin coverage with nbc's mark potter in pinellas park, florida. good evening. >> reporter: many good evening, brian. most of the protesters are gone tonight now that that bitter fight has ended with terri schiavo's death. >> give us some room, please.
>> reporter: after being notified her daughter had just died, mary schindler was escorted into the hospice for one last embrace. as supporters grieved outside -- >> it is with great sadness that it's been reported to us that terri schiavo has passed away. >> reporter: president bush expressed his disappointment schiavo had been allowed to die. >> the es ens is that the strong had the duty to protect the weak. >> on this day, 2005. next, allowing passengers to keep their electronics devices turned off during takeoff. a charge to stop it. i'll talk to him. color, and design. showing up where we least expect it and taking inspiration from our wildest dreams. because bold doesn't see the world in fixtures and faucets,
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perhaps, whether you can keep it on during takeoff and landing. a group including electronic device makers and the flight attendant's union is studying the issue and plans to release their findings by july. for missouri senator claire mccaskill, though, things could move a little faster. she's drafting legislation of her own to speed up the process. however, there's one group questioning the use of electronic devices. the national association of airline passengers. doug kid is the executive director of that group. he's also part of the group studying the issue for the faa. doug, thanks for being with me, sir. >> you're welcome. >> why are you opposed to the idea? >> not at all opposed. i'm part of the group that is studying the increased use of electronic devices on aircraft. what we are -- what i personally was a little bit upset about was miss mccaskill wanting to hurry us along to a predetermined outcome before we'd completed our study. >> a story in politico this weekend notes that the data on
potential interference is far from conclusive. as much of it relies on anecdotal accounts of disturbance, recounted by pilots and crew again. that's from the political article. what hard evidence do we have that electronic devices actually interferes with planes? >> well, that's exactly right. a lot of it is anecdotal. but the pilots do see interference, from time to time, on their instruments in the cockpit. they don't know whether it's coming from personal electronic devices in the cabin, but they don't know that it's not. and there's any number of potential sources for interference, both inside the aircraft and out. now, there's more than just the issue of personal electronic devices being used. one of the things we like to point out is we're not alone on the aerkt. you know, we have other people who are next to us and, you
know, the -- when we're talking about takeoffs and landings, the flight crew, the flight attendants, they have a requirement to make sure that the cabin is secure. if we say to them, our personal convenience is more important than their duties, that's really kind of selfish and not really thinking improperly of what's important to the flight. now, to the extent that rules and procedures can be developed, that will allow us to use these things, we're all for it. but to just recklessly go ahead and to say, well, i'm going to use my reader or i'm going to,, you know -- >> right. here's something else, doug. senator mccaskill points out, they're using ipads reportedly in the cockpits, so if the pilots are using ipads, why can't the folks in the cabin use them too? >> the main reason there i would think is, one -- first of all,
the aircraft systems are built to take a certain amount of interference in the normal course of events. but it's one thing to have one device. it's another thing to have a couple hundred. so, you know, what's happening, of course, is we've got a moving target. new planes are being built and put in service every day and the electronics on these planes are getting better and better and better. but at the same time, new consumer products are being brought to market every day. now, it's the obligation of the airlines to make sure that these devices don't interfere with the electronics on the airplane, but how can they do that? they certainly don't have the resources to check every single item under every single condition. neither does the faa. and neither does the fcc. all these items are now self-certified. >> doug, it sounds like your painting a fairly big picture for folks who might expect to be able to use their ipod or their iphone or something. but, you know, takeoff and
landing. it doesn't sound like this is something that is going to be happening in the very near future. >> well, i can't say. i can't speak for the committee. this is the way we see things, we recognize certain practical difficulties the in terms of using these things during takeoff and landing and common sense would dictate that takeoff and landing, being the most sensitive part of any flight, it's the time when the pilots are busiest, it's the time when most accidents occur. and maybe a little bit of court and i restraint on the part of passengers would be a good thing. >> you know what, that's probably a good spot to leave it. maybe courtesy and restraint on the part of passengers would be a good thing. doug kidd from the national association of airline passengers, doug, thank you. >> you're welcome. still to come, how we as a country have evolved on the issue of same-sex marriage. we'll take a close look at that. also, one of the very few husband and wife teams to have served in congress at the same time, connie and mary bono mack have decided to spend their easter with us.
we're very excited. we're going to talk immigration reform and of course, florida, florida, florida. this is msnbc, the place for politics. and we got onesies. sometimes miracles get messy. so we use tide free. no perfumes or dyes for her delicate skin. brad. not it. not it. just kidding. that's our tide. what's yours? i've always kept my eye on her... but with so much health care noise, i didn't always watch out for myself. with unitedhealthcare, i get personalized information and rewards for addressing my health risks. but she's still going to give me a heart attack. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare.
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[ lasers zapping ] ♪ yep. we make a pretty good team. [ male announcer ] call 1-800-lifelock or go to lifelock.com today. now over to you charles???? sir charles' single miles card left him blacked out. he's coming to us from home. that's gotta be traveling. now instead of covering the final four, he's stuck covering fourth graders. brick! bobby is 1 for 36. mikey? he keeps taking these low-percentage shots. and julio? i don't know what julio's doing. next time get the capital one venture card and fly any airline any time. what's in your wallet? can you get me mr. baldwin's autograph? get lost, kid. love your passat! um. listen, gary. i bought the last one. nice try. says right here you can get one for $199 a month. you can't believe the lame-stream media, gary. they're all gone. maybe i'll get one. [ male announcer ] now everyone's going to want one. you can't have the same car as me, gary!
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>> still want to marry me? >> oh, our game nights on saturday, they're epic. >> what's behind our evolution on the issue of same-sex marriage? and how this evolution could influence the high court. we'll get to all those stories in just a moment. first, our political headlines. the first family went to church this morning in washington. they walked to easter services from the white house. and it started to rain a little at one point, so the first lady shared an umbrella with her daughter, sasha, while the president shared his with malia. wednesday, he'll go to colorado to talk gun control. president obama will. one major proponent of stronger legislation is new york city mayor michael bloomberg, who has been trying to rally bipartisan support. but gop senators marco rubio and rand paul are set to possibly filibuster proposed recession. newark mayor cory booker reacted to that this morning. >> the reality is mayor bloomberg is not the bogeyman he's made out to be. he's joined with a coalition of
mayors, hundreds of us have joined in a coalition, and what we've been saying for years now is exactly what you said. common sense rules and regulations. >> and the senate's gang of eight, as it's called, seems closer than ever to a deal on immigration reform, in the wake of an agreement between business and union leaders over the controversial guest worker program. senator chuck schumer on "meet the press" this morning. >> with the agreement between business and labor, every major policy issue has been resolved on the gang of 8. now, everyone, we've all agreed that we're not going to come to a final agreement until we see draft legislative language and we agree on that. we've drafted some of it already. the rest will be drafted this week. and so i am very, very optimist optimistic. >> so just how imminent is a deal on immigration reform? kristen welker is at the white house for us on this sunday. kristen, what is the latest news from the senate's gang of eight? >> reporter: well, craig, good afternoon. the bottom line is, democrats,
chuck schumer, are essentially claiming that there is a deal, while republicans, including senator marco rubio, are urging caution and saying, not so fast. this needs to be open to public opinion and we don't have a deal until all the is are dotted, all the ts are crossed. so that is why the discussions stand right now, but all sides do agree that there was major progress that occurred in the past few days, with business and labor agreeing to a plan for the guest worker program. essentially worked out one of the major sticking points. how much to pay guest workers or temporary workers. this was something that threatened to derail these negotiations. it's something, by the way, craig, that was one of the main factors that led to derailing the negotiations back in 2007. so the fact that they have made progress on this, all sides would agree, is important and represents a major step forward. however, the legislation hasn't been finished yet, hasn't been finished being drafted, as you
heard senator chuck schumer say, so there is still a ways to go. and of course, one of the other major sticking points has to do with border security, and that is something that they are still working on. president obama, trying to keep a distance from these talks. last week, he made the point that he wants to see immigration reform passed by the end of the summer. i've been talking to my sources today. they say if an immigration reform bill is put forth next week, that they would be on pace to have that happen. but, of course, this is a very thorny, very difficult issue. craig? >> the other major issue, big deal there at 1600 pennsylvania avenue tomorrow, of course, the white house easter egg roll. what can you tell us about the latest preps for those, for that? >> reporter: not such a thorny issue. this is something that a lot of people look forward to all year long. i can tell you that they have been starting to do sound checks. this is the biggest public event at the white house. more than 30,000 people have tickets, from all 50 states, washington, d.c. so a lot of anticipation heading
into tomorrow. it's going to be the 135th easter egg roll. some of the big names who are going to be participating, craig, jordyn sparks. some members of the "sesame street" crew, and danica patrick of nascar will be reading tomorrow. and of course, what would an event be without elmo? he will be there, as well. a lot of excitement about tomorrow's easter egg roll. >> kristen welker with all things "sesame street" and immigration. kristen, do appreciate that. we'll pick up on immigration here. what does the guest worker deal mean? in some of the states that are ground zero for the need for immigration reform, power couple republicans mary bono mack, her husband, connie mack, are here with us in the studio today. they have some thoughts on that. happy easter to both of you. >> happy easter. >> like your tie. >> thank you very much. the wife picked it out. you guys should do this. you should have a show. is there talk of a show? >> it's been talked about. >> we're all ears. so it sounds like it's full steam ahead at this point.
your former colleague in florida, marco rubio, he put out this statement this morning, urging everyone not to get ahead of themselves. i want to play a snippet from senator chuck schumer on "meet the press" this morning and talk about it on the other side. take a listen. >> i talked to marco yesterday. we had great conversations and he is protecting some of the things that he thinks are very important in the bill, but i don't think that will stand in the way in any way of any final agreement. i think we're all on track. >> connie, so what are some of the provisions that you think rubio is holding his ground on and making sure are included in any sort of comprehensive immigration reform deal? >> i think that marco is, first of all, staking out a place that this is the gang of eight coming up with the idea, but there still needs to be hearings. don't rush this thing to a vote. let's make sure people understand what's in the bill. but i think what also marco is saying is that we need to secure our border. he was clear about that in the statement that he released, that we've seen this over time, in the past, when legislation has
passed on immigration. their promise to secure the border. it doesn't happen. marco is saying, we've got to make sure that piece is done first. >> mary, you represented california. there are approximately 2.6 million undocumented immigrants in california alone. if this deal does happen, and it sounds like it's imminent, what immediate effect would that have on the california economy. >> i think it could have a very positive effect. certainly, people in my district that would benefit from a guest worker program. you have to start by recognizing that agriculture is critically important and every year at the harvest time, the growers are begging for help. and it's a very unique workforce that has moved from farm to farm and from harvest to harvest. it would help them immediately. not only that, you have to look whether it's ag or the high-tech, the guest worker program for high-tech visas is critically important too. i think it would have a very positive effect. i'm encouraged by the discussions. it is also a bit, i guess i'm
superstitious, when one politician is saying, it's almost a done deal, i'm kind of saying, don't count your chickens or your eggs before they're hatched. >> i love how you say, "a politician." >> i'm in recovery. let's talk about the other issue that's dominating the day, these days. same-sex marriage in this country, of course, last week, the two big hearings before the high court, prop 8, doma. we were talking about this before the broadcast today. how surprised are you at the speed, at the shift at which public sentiment and public opinion seems to have changed on same-sex marriage in this country. >> well, you know, i'm pleasantly surprised. i think that it has rolled quicker than i thought it would. and i've always said that it is going to take a while for the american heart to evolve. and my fear is that if pushed too quickly, it would be met with force and resistance. my counsel, my years of service to the gay community was to take your time and let the american people evolve with you. and i think they have. i think you're seeing these
numbers. people are kind of saying, it didn't bother me, i'm cool with it one way or the other and now they're fine with letting it progress. but for the first time, i have to say this. when i was being micced out, it was the first time anyone asked me if my wife, connie, was joining me. >> well, welcome to the program. thank you, dear. >> let's talk about your own personal evolution. i imagine there's been one on same-sex marriage. you've got a unique vantage point. >> you know, from the beginning, though, i have been one that says that marriage is between a man and a woman. but i've also recognized that there are a lot of issues outside of just that religious institution, marriage, dealing in the law. how do you treat people, how do you treat savings and the same rights that a married couple would have that a same-sex couple should have as well. so we need to find a way to get that done. >> it so sounds like you still believe in men/woman. >> i believe that marriage is between a man and a woman, as a
religious institution, and that we shouldn't force religious institutions to marry people who they don't think, who don't fit in the same category that they believe should be married. >> should government get out of the business of marriage? >> well, no, i don't think government should, but i don't think government should force the church to tell -- the government shouldn't tell the church that the church has to marry same-sex couples. >> just like i told you in the makeup room. >> is this your opinion as well? >> no, look, i'm a limit -- it's so funny, what do you mean by limited government, i'm a limited government republican and i believe that government should stay out of this, absolutely. >> you didn't answer my question. >> okay, what's the question? >> do you agree with your husband's point of view? >> great, thanks. we're going to have a great easter dinner tonight. no, my husband and i don't see this the same way. thank you for -- >> well, it sounded like you were saying that. i just wanted to make sure. >> i think we have now confused the entire public, which is perfect. >> connie and i agree to
disagree on this, with love. our family was a modern family before there was a moper family. we've been through this with my stepson, we've been through a lot of these changes. and truthfully, i think before connie met me, he had never thought about, you know, confronting some of these issues the way he has. and he's been gracious and wonderful. and i would say he's evolving a little bit. >> it seems like -- >> always putting words in my mouth. always putting words -- >> listen, if you want to evolve fully here on sunday afternoon, msnbc, i think it would surprise a lot of folks, but we certainly welcome this. you brought up chaz. >> yes. >> when you have conversations, and i imagine this is a topic that comes up from time to time, what are those conversations like? >> you know, i remember when chaz came to me and said that he was going to have a sex change. and that, you know, what did i think about it? and i remember saying to chaz that, you know, something that i certainly don't completely understand or might not necessarily agree, but you're family and we love you and we will support you in the decisions that you want to make.
and i think that's what's important about this topic as well, is that out of all things, family is so important. especially when you think about a family unit and supporting one another, loving one another, is an important part of what keeps a family together. >> that's a good easter message. before i let you guys get out of here, i do want to ask you about florida politics really quickly, while we have you here. we talked about senator rubio. there is some talk that jeb bush may be getting back into the game. rick scott, who is about as popular as a fart in church, these days, it seems -- >> did you just say that? >> florida politics, always unique, always interesting. what do we think happened in 2016? who comes out of florida? >> we don't know that, yet. certainly, jeb bush, i think, is the 800-pound gorilla in the room. >> if he gets in, everyone else gets out. >> if he gets in, it's very difficult for anybody else. and by the way, i think jeb
would be a great president and i hope that he considers it. because i think he did a fantastic job as governor of the state of florida. and i think he understands the issues and would be a fantastic president. >> when you guys start your new show, is it going to be called mary and connie or connie and mary? >> it's going to be called, "yes, dear." >> thank you so much. i do appreciate -- and by the way, we're giving gifts on this easter to all of our guests. there's some peeps -- >> wait -- >> thank you, thank you. >> i didn't -- >> shelf life of a million years. >> mary bono mack, connie mack, thank you very much. it's an open invite and come back any time. hope the easter dinner works o put. new information from the south african government about nelson mandela's health, some new comments from one of the former president's grandchildren as well. the latest on nelson mandela is ahead. also, the history channel mini series, "the bible," it's proving to be a ratings
juggernaut. besting much of broadcast television, as well, including "american idol." we'll take a look at "the bible," the show, not the book, next. wlp p when you have diabetes... your doctor will say get smart about your weight. i tried weight loss plans... but their shakes aren't always made for people with diabetes. that's why there's glucerna hunger smart shakes. they have carb steady, with carbs that digest slowly to help minimize blood sugar spikes. and they have six grams of sugars. with fifteen grams of protein to help manage hunger... look who's getting smart about her weight. [ male announcer ] glucerna hunger smart. a smart way to help manage hunger and diabetes.
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the people today, they called you king. they think you were a messiah. >> who do you think i am? >> whoever believes in me shall never die. >> you are the son of god. >> those were scenes from "the bible," the history channel mini series is a smashing hit, apparently. uls in more than 10 million viewers an episode. it's wrapping up this easter night with the season finale. so why is "the bible" so popular. and is it accurate?
for more on that, i want to bring in raymond flynn, former u.s. ambassador to the vatican as well as the former mayor of boston. good to see you again, sir. thanks for coming back. >> happy easter, craig. great to be on the program. >> happy easter to you as well. we've seen biblical movies before, "the ten commandments," "passion of the christ." what makes this particular mini series different? >> i think the environment, the particular period of time we're going through, in a growing secular environment, where people are learning less, are being exposed less and less, you know, in culture to religion and faith, i think the bible on "th history channel, with its high ratings, it's a real refreshing educational outreach for many people, who are waiting for this type of program and welcome this type of program. in fact, i think this will hope the door in america, across the world, maybe, for more programs
like this on religion. not just on christianity, but on all faiths, because, frankly, you know, there are a lot of people who are faith oriented and want to learn more about other people's faith and religion. >> we know that people like it. again, it's been outrating "american idol." and you've seen it. i mean, is it accurate? does it stick to the stories of the bible fairly closely? >> i think it does. i mean, you're always going to find people, going to find some level of fault at it, not totally depicting the teaching of the bible, but nonetheless, i think it's an extraordinary educational impact it's having, particularly on young people, and people who want to get back to their faith and roots. and, you know, i guess you could always find fault with something on television and in the movies, but, look, i'd give this a straight "a," and that's a pretty good mark.
>> what about jesus himself, in the mini series, most scholars agree that jesus probably looked a lot more like me than the portuguese guy that plays him in the mini series. what's that about? >> well, i think that's why they don't have people like you and i in the movies, because they're looking for real handsome people, craig. >> that's -- well played, sir. touche. but seriously, though, it does seem that more often than not, anytime jesus is depicted on television or in a movie, even on stage, that more often than not, it's an anglo jesus. >> well, usually it's trying to reach an audience where the character or the person depicts somebody that is believable, somebody that is welcoming, somebody who is humble. i mean, all those things are very important for making the movie in this series here, tv series, attractive to a wide
audience. and i think it, in fact, has -- it has done that. and, you know, i mean, i think that's the nature of the entertainment business. and frankly, i think the message is far more important than the physical characteristics of the people. having said that, also, people gravitate to the appearance of actors and believability and credibility, and acceptability, and i think that's what "the bible" series represents. and i think that's why so many millions and millions of americans have been gravitating towards this series on the history channel. >> let's switch gears here before i let you go. again, you were the u.s. ambassador to the vatican, cardinal timothy dolan who was on abc's "this week," earlier today. take a listen to what he said, and i want to talk about it on the other side. >> we've got to do better to see that our defense of marriage is not reduced to an attack on gay
people. and i admit, we haven't been too good at that. we try our darnedest, we're not an anti-anybody. >> ambassador, what do you think? what might the church do to improve its relationship with the gay and lesbian community? >> you know, i was at church last night and church was packed in south boston. and, you know, i know pretty much all the people in the community. i looked around the church and i saw several gay people in the church that i knew well. >> how did you know -- >> and they know -- they know that -- they know me. and they feel welcome in that church, craig. and, you know, there's always going to be differences of opinion, but i think as tim dolan said, you know, the church has a lot to do, a lot more work to do, and i think this pope, pope francis, is trying to do that with his message of humility, particularly, his message of forgiveness. i think in all my years in politics, i think this is one of the most extraordinary easter
sundays in terms of the catholic church reaching out to people who probably didn't feel that they were welcome in the church. but i think they're seeing that there is a message of the catholic church really welcoming them back home. >> former u.s. ambassador to the vatican, raymond flynn, we will leave it there, sir. thank you. >> thank you, craig. someone else at the white house is dressing up like an easter bunny tomorrow. wait until you hear who, next. also, coming up, how much credit does ellen deserve for the sea change on same-sex marriage in this country? you're watching msnbc. vo: from the classic lines to the elegant trim in each and every piece, bold will make your reality a dream. when the doctor told me that i could smoke for the first week... i'm like...yeah, ok... little did i know that one week later i wasn't smoking.
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>> announcer: lifelock monitors thousands of these sites 24 hours a day. and if we discover any of our members' data for sale, lifelock is there with the most comprehensive identity theft protection available. [♪...] [squealing, crash] call 1-800-lifelock or go to lifelock.com today. [ male announcer ] what are happy kids made of? bikes and balloons, wholesome noodles on spoons. a kite, a breeze, a dunk of grilled cheese. catches and throws, and spaghettio's. that's what happy kids are made of. campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do. in our political playground today, bo, the first family's dog, you know bo. he loves easter. this is bo last easter, chasing his very own big easter egg. this year, the portuguese water dog, upping his game. bo will be dressed for the
occasion, we're told. organizing for actions facebook page posted this picture of bo decked out in his white house bunny ears for the day. he should be in fine form for tomorrow's big easter egg hunt at 1600 pennsylvania avenue. also on our political playground, president obama was back on the golf course this weekend. it's the first time that the president has been on the links since the sequester spending cuts took effect at the beginning of march. some republicans say the president should stay off the greens in this time of austerity. a new report last week found the most requested document in the nib's electronic reading room is a report from 1950 on flying saucers. the document reports o of three flying saucers, allegedly recovered in new mexico, according to the roswell new mexico daily record, the memo has been viewed nearly a million times. who's to blame for the slow
pace of gun reform? is it lawmakers? is it president obama? we're going to talk about that in our brain trust. first, though, what is the rapid public opinion shift on marriage equality really about? is it a change in culture? is it purely generational? we're going to delve hainto tha as well. this is msnbc, the place for politics. [ dentist ] with so many toothbrushes to choose from, my patients don't know which one to use. i tell them to use the brand i use. oral-b -- the brush originally created by a dentist. trust the brand more dentists and hygienists use. oral-b. i'm up next, but now i'm singing the heartburn blues. hold on, prilosec isn't for fast relief. cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. ♪ oh what a relief it is! cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. there's a reason no one says "easy like monday morning."
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with so much noise about health care... i tuned it all out. with unitedhealthcare, i get information that matters... my individual health profile. not random statistics. they even reward me for addressing my health risks. so i'm doing fine... but she's still going to give me a heart attack. we're more than 78,000 people looking out for more than 70 million americans. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. christians around the world are celebrating easter today and catholics are looking to the newly installed pope francis. the pontiff gave his first easter homily at the vatican early today. at least 300,000 gathered in st. peter's square to hear him preach a message of peace. i'm craig melvin. he's a quick look at some of the other top stories making news right now. nelson mandela is still in the hospital, but the south african government said he had a restful day and his condition is
improving. he's with his family. let's take a listen to what his granddaughter said earlier today. >> this qualifies me as a person, as his grandchildren, to give me strength, to carry on and support him in whatever way he needs. >> the former south african president is being treated for pneumonia. he's 94 and he has been in the hospital since wednesday. police in texas are investigating the death of a district attorney and his wife there. mike and cynthia mcclellan were found shot dead in their home this weekend. an assistant d.a. from mcclellan's office was also shot and killed earlier this year. and a rousing sendoff for soldiers in atlanta. it's a ten-year tradition at hartsfield-jackson international airport. travelers stand and cheer military members leaving for afghanistan, iraq, and kuwait, but yesterday was the last time. starting this week, there will be no more chartered flights for troops the to the region leaving
from atlanta, because we are sending fewer troops abroad. public opinion on same-sex marriage has been changing fast, according to polls, while some of it could be generational, nbc's kristen dahlgren takes a look at the role of popular culture and politics in the evolution on same-sex marriage. >> reporter: when ellen degeneres came out in 1997 -- >> gay woman in aisle 5. >> reporter: it was front-page news. "will & grace" soon brought gay men into american living rooms every week. >> do you still want to marry me? >> over and over and over. >> reporter: fast forward a few years to what's considered a modern family, and one of the most popular shows on tv. >> oh, our gay night's on saturday. they're epic. >> reporter: over the years, television has changed the conversation about american sexuality. and what happens in hollywood doesn't stay there. as shows created an era of acceptance, more and more real men and women came out of the closet, meaning more and more americans. now personally know someone
who's gay. >> the combination of knowing gay people personally and knowing gay people through the media are convincing people that gay people are people, they have lives, they have loves, they have families. >> reporter: in a recent nbc poll, for the first time, a majority, 51% of americans, are now in favor of same-sex marriage, up from just 30% in 2004. earlier this month, senator rob portman publicly supported same-sex marriage after his son came out. of course, nearly half of americans still oppose it. >> maybe that's the way i was brought up, you know, a marriage is an institution that's between a man and a woman. >> reporter: leaving opponents now watching just as closely as christine hershey and susy van horn, partners for 35 years and parents to chris. like many, now waiting to see what happens in the supreme court and the court of public
opinion. kristen dahlgren, nbc news, los angeles. >> let's bring in the brain trust on this sunday. dana milbank, a "washington post" columnist, perry bacon jr., a political editor at the grio, also an msnbc contributor, and our friend, amy holmes is a writer at the blaze. happy year's to all of you. >> happy easter. >> dana, we'll start with you, since you're not wearing a tie. is it pop culture or personal experience that's shifting attitudes on same-sex marriage? >> well, that's yes and yes. it's a combination of all of these things and it's also thought, opinion leaders, saying things, people get on board behind that. this is sort of how these societal trends develop all the time. this is just happening extraordinarily rapidly and it seems that every day, or at least every week, somebody else is coming out on capitol hill,
not as gay, but in support of gay marriage. >> they just alluded to it, there, amy, the speed at which this shift is taking. and i talked to mary bono and connie about this a few minutes ago. what do you think is behind the speed at which it seems to be happen? >> i think we've seen the sort of tipping point. malcolm gladwell has written about this. this tipping point of public opinion. and i do believe it's generational, and i think it started way back during the sexual revolution, has to do with no-fault divorce. for two summers when i was in college, i worked in the king county marriage licensing department. and i can tell you, if we let a lot of those goofballs who walked in there get married, i think a lot of heteros are saying, we should be able to get married too. >> that's a very unique theory, perry bacon. perry, you wrote a piece this week, few democrats now believe that backing gay marriage poses a political risk to them, even
if they represent the traditionally republican state. according to politico, only nine democratic senators out of 55 do not support same-sex marriage. what kind of pressure does that put on those lrawmakers, perry? >> the nine who are left, i don't think they have a huge amount of pressure yet. what i think you're really seeing, though, although i'm not sure if you're one. o senators left, that you're going to have a rally in front of your office and say, you must be for the support of gay marriage now. a lot of people in red states still aren't for gay marriage. i think what you're seeing is these senators, they sort of see where history is going, and their view is, why not be on the right side of it, eventually, even if it took me a while to get there. why not be on the side where most democrats, if you're a democratic member of the senate, it makes sense you're for something at this point. i don't think there'll be a huge amount of pressure on them yet, but i think this is where things are headed. >> but we can say, safely, from here on out, this is going to be a litmus test for any democrat that wants to be president of
the united states. >> i think, absolutely. you saw mark warner, the one kind of traditional moderate democrat out there, still running for president. he came out for gay marriage this week, right before the supreme court took up their case. you saw hillary clinton, deval patrick, all the candidate who is want to run for 2016, for the president, saying they're for gay marriage as well. >> that was also in the democratic platform. that was included in this past election cycle. >> is it going to be a litmus test for any goper who also wants to be president of the united states? >> on the one hand, they can track public opinion polls just like anybody else and they can see that young people overwhelmingly support gay marriage. on the other hand, christian evangelicals who believe fervently in traditional marriage are also a very active and an important part of the republican base. i think the republican nominee is going to have to try to balance both of those. >> you and i both know that no republicans who wants to be president is going to win a primary in south carolina, for
instance, if he or she says that they support same-sex marriage. >> as we talked about last week, what we're seeing, ted cruz has come out with this formulation, marco rubio did at cpac, that they support traditional marriage, but they also support states defining what marriage is. >> we're going to take a quick break. when we come back, we'll talk about the other big issue. dana milbank, we'll start with you, because you wrote something that was very interesting this week. you really took the president to task for gun control. gun control, it's slowed down. was it congress, was it the president? whose fault? you'll be surprised what the brain trust says about that on the other side of this break. 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. [ robert ] we created legalzoom to help people start their business and launch their dreams. go to legalzoom.com today and make your business dream a reality.
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including responsible gun owners, say, you know what, we can do better than this. >> prm there, keeping the pressure on lawmakers thursday, urging them, urging them to move on gun legislation. this week, we hit 100 days since the newtown shooting that killed 20 children, 6 teachers. it was a tragedy that mobilized the nation to do something about gun violence. but what has happened to that momentum? has that momentum waned at all? the brain trust is back. dana, your column this weekend. you wrote that the president was too slow on gun legislation. what more could president obama have done to keep up the pressure on congress to keep up with a gun control bill by now. >> well, in fairness, it's possible that even if he did everything right and put on maximum pressure from the start, it's possible nothing would have happened anyway, just because of the way the partisan balance is here. but it seems, you know, the old
rahm emanuel phrase, never let a crisis go to waste, you need to act quickly, because the fault in congress is inertia and getting absolutely nothing done. so in those rehearsal dearly da we're all thinking about newtown and talking about newtown, this was the time to rush ahead, get this new congress in in a hurry, force them to act quickly, don't have them go off and study the issue. we knew exactly what policies had to be there. now you have harry reid saying, well, there's no point in taking up assault guns. you have the nra is reinvigor e reinvigorated and they're pretty sure they can kill off the background checks now and we're really left with not very much at all. >> amy, president obama, he's sort of been passing some of the blame on to congress in terms of feet dragging. in your opinion, whose fault is it? the delay on gun control legislation? >> i think when you have wayne lapierre personally campaigning for harry reid back in 2010, that you weren't going to see a lot of action on gun control. >> we were naive?
>> no, actually, you and i talked on this show many, many times -- >> the citizenry was a bit na e naive. >> but sort of to amplify dana's point, i think president obama did not get on the phone and he didn't lobby aggressively as president of the united states with capitol hill to try to get this gun legislation passed. i think it's interesting, earlier in the show, your correspondent on the hill talked about how obama is staying away from immigration, so that that can move forward. i think the more interesting question is, why is president obama campaigning on gun control as public support for it continues to fall? >> you mentioned public support. and perry, i want to throw this graphic on the screen here. gun control since pre-newtown levels. gun control, now compared to pre-newtown, march 2013, 47%. december, just four months ago, 57%. what's happened? >> the urgency has went away. dana's right. the president had a moment to like push it when the urgency was there. but the one thing i think is wrong about this analysis is we've been watching republicans
the last few years. can you imagine the president wrote a gun control bill and put it on the floor in three weeks. there would have been, this is too fast, we haven't had time to read the bill yet, i can't believe he's trying to jam this through. i don't think moving that much faster really would have helped here. i mean, the president's idea on background checks has a very high amount of support among the public, and their strategy has been to try to get a few conservative lawmakers, a tom coburn from oklahoma, someone like that to get behind this bill, and that will sort of shift the public debate. i think their strategy is pretty smart. it may not work, but i don't necessarily think a rush to judgment would have worked either here. >> perry, don't you think it's interesting that president obama seems to always overestimate the power of the bully pulpit? we saw this with obama care, endless speeches and public support continue to go down. do you think there's a more cynical reason that president obama is going on the road and beating the drum of gun control, because mayor bloomberg has $1 million he's pledged to put into these midterm elections.
>> amy gets one question, so feel free to answer it. >> i don't think the bully pulpit is working here. i think bloomberg's ads haven't really moved a lot of public opinion in any of these key states so far. i think the president is only using the bull pen as a second tactic. he used the first tack to try to get it to work. the treasury on gun control too. i think now he's conceding the meetings and the congressional part is not working. he's trying to sort of reingauge it. but the bully pulpit is not working. his negotiation might be better right now than the bully pulpit of the president. >> dana, i had charlie rangel on this about a week ago and supposed this question to him, this chasm that exists between polling and political will, or lack thereof, and he said to me very simply, you know, folk, when they hear 90% of people asked support something, they think that we're going to act. those are the 90% that show up, those are the 90% that call, the
90% that contribute to our campaigns. the silent majority is not just silent, but they're silent, they're inactive, they don't contribute. is that really what we're seeing here as well? >> i think that's part of it, but the other thing is, our polls are always looking at the national pictures, as a full snapshot, where these things are decided district by district and state by state. and because the senate overeemp sizes, because the way the institution is structured, overempowers rural areas, it overempowers gun rights activist. same thing in the house, where everything has been gerrymandered, so you have all of these republicans in safe seats and you've got democrats from overwhelmingly liberal urban areas. so this is why it doesn't actually translate in the polls and you don't actually see legislative action responding to public opinion. >> david milbank is not a contradict constructionist.
>> i was going to say, i think the constitution also empowers gun rights activists with the second amendment. but craig, i have to thank you for letting me ask perry a question. >> it seemed like you wanted to respond as well? >> to perry's point about the bully pulpit, i think the midterm elections are really looming large for democrats and getting money into those coffers. the gun control issue, as an issue, isn't working, but there's a lot of organized power in the form of mayor bloomberg behind it. >> all right, we'll take a quick break, guys. stay right there. when we come back, the brain trust will give us their april fools headlines. this should be funny, could be awesome, could be awful. find out after the break. don't go away. and every day since, we've worked hard to keep it. today, the beaches and gulf are open for everyone to enjoy. we've shared what we've learned, so we can all produce energy more safely. bp's also committed to america. we support nearly two-hundred-fifty thousand jobs and invest more here than anywhere else.
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attention." it's, of course, april fools, of course. that did not get the response that i thought it would. on this last day of march, i want to ask all of you your april fools' day headline. amy, ladies first. what's your head lane? >> white house unveils its budget. no, it didn't. it's two months late. it's expected on april 10th. we have already seen house republicans and senate democrats pass their budget. i would add that none of the president's budget has ever earned a single vote. not one. >> i give you an opportunity to come on and have a little april fools' day fun and you turn into partisan hackery. >> i take exception! >> dana milbank, what's your -- >> i'm a nonpartisan hack. >> mine is, amy holmes eschews nonpartisan hackery. that would be an april fool.
mine is antonin scalia, in a shift, will wed clarence thomas, says the oral arguments on gay marriage caused him to evolve. >> that's exhale pretty funny. what do you think, generally speaking of the arguments last week you heard and saw before the court? >> last week, before the court, i think the arguments, mirrored what's been going on across the country generally. it's very clear that led by anthony kennedy, they're going to knock down the defense of marriage act, and one way or the other, whatever they decide on the california case, these guys aren't going to be get in the way of the inevitable march toward gay marriage. >> amy, it also struck me that one justice, question standing, and another justice, but one of them or maybe two of them said, should we even be hearing this? how did this get before us? >> that was interesting and that had to do with standing and
basically if they say, we shouldn't have heard this in the first place on prop 8, that means the appeals court overturning prop 8, as a constitutional matter, means that gay marriage is legal in california. >> perry, let's end on some fun. your april fools' headline, what did you come up? y generally, your headlines are the dullest and the driest. >> wow, craig. >> your articles are great, but generally your headlines. >> this week, i said, with so many senators evolving on gay marriage, senate creates darwin caucus. >> there you go. that's pretty funny there. >> basically, you guys know what i'm getting at. no senator taking principled stands to evolve is a joke. in 2013, you can read a poll and see where the wind is blowing. every time i hear these evolution comments, i can't believe -- you can't say that anymore. saying evolving was okay for
president obama in 2010. today it just means you can't be honest and say, i read the polls, you know, i don't want to lead, i want to follow in this case and that's what i'm doing. mark warner gave his very principled statement, but didn't seem like he had a lot of principles beforehand on this. >> and it feels like the media is starting to get played a little bit. every few days, another politician realizes, if i come out for same-sex marriage, i get a headline, two or three hours on cable news. >> listening to the clintons talking about same-sex marriage is like listening to bonnie and clyde talk about bank security. this is ridiculous. clearly it's political. >> we'll unfortunately have to leave it there. i've got gifts, but you guys are in d.c. we've got peeps for you, amy. take your peeps. >> thank you, craig. those things don't expire. be well, my friends. join me next week, 2:00 eastern
on saturday/3:00 eastern on sunday for the latest political news, some analysis. we'll have some funs and laughs and some gifts. and tomorrow, don't forget, and i'm sure it's on your calendar, the premiere of "all in with chris hayes," i saw some of the rehearsal yesterday. we're in for a treat. it starts tomorrow night eastern right here on msnbc. a febreze experiment. to prove febreze can keep this car fresh, we loaded it with fast food, sweaty hockey gear, and a smelly dog cage. and parked it at a mall. in texas. for two days.
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