tv MSNBC Live MSNBC December 10, 2013 1:00pm-2:01pm PST
when it comes to the president's policies, actions do speak louder than words. >> congressman paul ryan and senator patty murray are reportedly close to striking a small deal. >> democracy in action is a beautiful thing. >> far from the grand bargain some were hoping for. >> most incremental, smallest, tiniest. >> the fact that we are, is telling about where we are. >> congratulations. you didn't shut down the government. hallelujah. >> unemployment benefits. how is that going to shake out? >> you're causing them to become part of this perpetual, unemployed group in our economy. >> you have presided over what is perhaps the least productive, least popular congresses in history. >> it ought to be judged on how many laws we repeal. >> there are too many of us on the sidelines, comfortable in complacency, and cynicism, when our voices must be heard. >> there is snow, sleet, and to
tension for slippery commutes in the northeast. washington, d.c. is seeing the sun peek out after a blanket of snowfall, which temporarily closed some government offices. just don't call it a shutdown. congress did brave the weather warnings and went to work. they faced a very big budget deadline on friday. that's part of a last ditch to do list that includes a defense bill and ever evaporating hopes for a farm bill. meanwhile, president obama is in the air right now, heading back to the capitol, sharing air force one on the way back, just as he did on the way over, with former president george w. bush, and life laura. the presidents' day began under rainy skies in soweto, south africa, where he joined dozens of world leaders in a moving tribute to the late nelson mandela. >> mandela showed us the power of action. of taking risk on behalf of our ideals. but as he showed in painstaking negotiations to transfer power and draft new laws, he was not
afraid to compromise for the sake of a larger goal. >> and for more on the struggle for compromise in washington right now, we are joined by congresswoman, louise slaughter, democrat of new york. with us from capitol hill. how are you? >> well, thanks. and you? >> doing very well. and i hope you're okay in the snow today in washington. you have demanded a no budget, no vacation line. and here we are on tuesday, ticking down to this deadline. how does it look? >> well, first, let me tell you, i'm from upstate new york. and i can't believe they closed everything down here for what appears to be a heavy frost. but here we are. i do not want this congress to go home and take christmas holiday with so much oh absolutely undone. now, if they don't announce a budget agreement by tomorrow, wednesday, according to the rules of the house, they will not be able to get it passed and voted on by friday. unless we always can fudge that a little up here. but those are the rules. let me put it that way.
and i think in congress, that's not news to anybody. but we are leaving critically important things hanging by their thumbs. and we should not in any case go home until at least we have that budget. we have defense authorization. and that we do something about sequestration and the farm bill. >> congresswoman, it's funny you say that. we are hearing a certain type of by partisanship in some of those complaints. listen to what senator roger wicker told my colleague, chris jansing, earlier today. >> what i'm hearing is, we're going to replace about $65 billion worth of appropriation cuts. and we're going to do it sort of with a collection of cats and dogs, fees on airline passengers, spectrum sales and things like that. a real case of small ball, and nothing that makes me think we've bent the curve at all for the long-term debt. >> now, let me tell you, when i hear that from a liberal perspective, where people will be concerned, number one, about
getting unemployment insurance into this, which he doesn't exactly mention, and number two, with the idea that we do need new revenues, you could argue it's good you're looking at revenues, even from the small ball stuff. where do you come down? >> well, it sure could be worse. they could be messing around with social security and medicare. and they're not. and they are planning to do something about sequestration, at least not jump into the next trough. on sequestration, which is worse than what we have now. but i always feel saddened and really sorry that the united states can't do big things anymore. that we put band-aids on and hope for the best. a tourniquet here, stick pick pencil there. but we're not going to redeal with anything. that's not the country we want to be and used to be and need to be again. >> all right, congresswoman louise slaughter, thank you for the briefing. >> you're welcome. >> tell paul ryan we said hello and good luck. >> he'll be hear happy to hear that from me.
thank you. coming up, tom brokaw, who interviewed nelson mandela, along with patricia williams. and the enduring impact mandela had on our own president. >> over 30 years ago, while still a student, i learned of nelson mandela and struggles taking place in this beautiful land. and it stirred something in me. it woke me up to my responsibilities. to others and to myself. and it set me on an improbable journey that finds me here today. ♪ [ female announcer ] holiday cookies are a big job. everything has to be just right. perfection is in the details. ♪ pillsbury cookie dough.
make the holidays pop! bob will retire when he's 153, which would be fine if bob were a vampire. but he's not. ♪ he's an architect with two kids and a mortgage. luckily, he found someone who gave him a fresh perspective on his portfolio. and with some planning and effort, hopefully bob can retire at a more appropriate age. it's not rocket science. it's just common sense. from td ameritrade. hands for holding. feet, kicking. better things than the joint pain and swelling of moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. if you're trying to manage your ra, now may be the time to ask about xeljanz. xeljanz (tofacitinib) is a small pill for adults with moderate to severe ra for whom methotrexate did not work well. xeljanz can lower your ability to fight infections,
including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers have happened in patients taking xeljanz. don't start taking xeljanz if you have any kind of infection, unless ok with your doctor. tears in the stomach or intestines, low blood cell counts and higher liver tests and cholesterol levels have happened. your doctor should perform blood tests, including certain liver tests, before you start and while you are taking xeljanz. tell your doctor if you have been to a region where certain fungal infections are common and if you have had tb, hepatitis b or c, or are prone to infections. tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, and if you are pregnant, or plan to be. taken twice daily, xeljanz can reduce the joint pain and swelling of moderate to severe ra, even without methotrexate. ask if xeljanz is right for you.
welcome back. heavy rain could not overcome the outpouring of emotion in south africa today, as world leaders and representatives of the major faiths joined to remember the life of nelson mandela. former u.s. presidents, as well as leaders of china, france, brazil and many other countries, sat with tens of thousands of mourners to remember the legacy of the leader known as madiba who 20 years ago received the nobel prize, and in his eulogy, president obama discussed what made south africa's first black president such a guiding force in his own life. >> and while i will always fall short of madiba's example, he makes me want to be a better man. he speaks to what's best inside us. >> and there was plenty of star power in attendance at the soweto soccer stadium. at times the president's impromptu handshake with fidel
castro and so-called selfie with the british and danish prime ministers that has commanded some of the attention outside of the country after the ceremony ended. in fact, judging by the reaction of the south africans in attendance, they were much more pleased to see president obama than their own president, jacob zuma. >> and joining us now, nbc's tom brokaw, who interviewed nelson mandela, and patricia williams, professor at columbia university. thank you both for being here. starting with you, tom. you followed the arc of this man's life for a long time. do we learn anything different about the domestic international reception from watching those events earlier today? >> well, it was unifying force. i was thinking as i was watching the byplay there in the audience and especially in the stands between the former american presidents who were there,
president george bush 43, bill clinton, jimmy carter and barack obama. probably the only thing the four could agree on is they all admired and adored barack -- obviously, nelson mandela. and he was that kind of a force, not just as at the highest levels of political power in the world, but among the people, as well. i was in that soccer stadium the day that he was released after he was released. and it's just hard to fully understand the transformation of that country. you have to remember that before he was released, we didn't know what he was going to do once he got out. that he became even a larger figure in our lives than anybody could have anticipated. because he didn't tip his hand in any way about how he wanted to unify the country. there were elements of the a & c who said let the war begin now. but he chose not to go in that direction. and i think as obama put it, very appropriately today, he not only changed laws, but changed hearts, as well. it seemed to me that in his speech, as a tribute to nelson
mandela, obama was speaking not just to the south african people, but to political people everywhere. that we've got to find ways to move forward together. >> well, and patricia, to that point, mandela famously said many times, prisoners can't make contracts. they can't make agreements. that was a political strategy about the role he was playing in the country. but it also, as you as a law professor can tell us, is legally accurate. because consent requires freedom. >> yes. and it was -- it's very interesting. i think that one of the legacies that he has is the constitution of south africa, which is among the most progressive in the world. and that certainly seems to be informed by his experience as a prisoner for 27 years. which under many, many regimes, he would not have survived. and the current constitution of south africa reflects that experience in that it bars both bodily and psychological insults to the dignity of prisoners. it protects a range of discrimination, goes far beyond any constitution, almost any
other constitution in the world. and his -- the elevation of that respect for both bodily and psychological dignity, particularly in an era where i think the fear of terrorism has inspired many governments. in fact, perhaps to some degree our own. to disregard the nature of due process and charges against prisoners and the sense of bodily and viability and integrity so central to a democratic regime. >> sure. and certainly in other leading western democracies, including britain, you've had a re they negotiation of prisoners' rights and accused suspects' rights with regard to terrorism. but these are, tom, slippery concepts when you look over the arc of history. because he had a revolutionary period where at least he was associated with violence, if not directly advocating it. and that's something that people who have tried to discredit his legacy or focus on communism have emphasized. that's really not the way we
view him in this country anymore. >> no, and i was thinking as i watched this memorial today, if they had gone to war 25 years ago before they put nelson mandela in prison, it would have been a far different country and they wouldn't have had nelson mandela to have that period of reflection to develop the philosophy he did. in a way, his imprisonment served not only him well, but his people well. because he was able to come out of there, having reflected on all those long nights. it was cruel and inhumane what they did to him. but in the end, it made him what he became. he became this beacon of hope, survival, and the intellectual torch carrier for freeing people everywhere, with dignity and reaching across the lines that had divided them. >> yeah, you say that dignity. and it is really in the name that we associate. i was looking back at some of your older writings. and before the 2008 election, when barack obama's political fate had not at all been decided, you wrote about the hope that his election in 2008,
as the first black president, could actually create something of a mandela moment for the united states. has that happened? >> well, i -- i do think that mandela is -- as obama said, one of a kind. and obama invokes some of the hope and inspiration. obama is much younger. i think that the question of guantanamo and certain foreign policies make his situation more complex. particularly as one views it in comparison to the entire arc of a life. particularly as one compares mandela to people like gandhi and king, who have been tested, as tom said, by periods of extraordinary imprisonment. and i think sometimes the wisdom that comes out of those experiences really are the ability to bridge two very different life experiences. and so mandela keeps being called a warrior of peace, warrior of human dignity.
and that really embraces i think the contradiction of somebody who has had the deep experience of being both a warrior and a peace maker. obama, i think, has the dignity and certainly in some ways almost the kind of physiology me that resembles the quiet smile of mandela. but i think the long-term history, that's quite -- that's quite a comparison that -- >> it's very hard to make these judgments very early, frankly. professor is quite right. he's quite young. we still have a long way to go, we hope, in the political history of this country. there will be other african-american presidents, men and women, at some point, in our history, as well. to say nothing of the other ethnic groups that will be represented. and we'll get beyond that at some point. and we'll talk about the underlying values that really count. >> right. >> in a complex, democratic society. >> right. and it allows you also, when we look at other countries, obviously, we tend to focus on ourselves. we can learn something.
your point is, i think, apt. there was a healing power in the nature of the mandela legacy that goes beyond being a politician. and there's so many differences to this story but something that many populations have in common is we often respect our activists and our faith leader sometimes more than our professional politicians. we are out of time on this. but i really appreciate you guys joining us today. nbc's tom brokaw, professor patricia williams, thank you very much. thank you. we'll talk about the bahl kinization of the gop in today's top lines. la's known definitely for its traffic, congestion, for the smog. but there are a lot of people that do ride the bus. and now that the buses are running on natural gas, they don't throw out as much pollution into the air. so i feel good.
i feel like i'm doing my part to help out the environment. a man who doesn't stand still. but jim has afib, atrial fibrillation -- an irregular heartbeat, not caused by a heart valve problem. that puts jim at a greater risk of stroke. for years, jim's medicine tied him to a monthly trip to the clinic to get his blood tested. but now, with once-a-day xarelto®, jim's on the move. jim's doctor recommended xarelto®. like warfarin, xarelto® is proven effective to reduce afib-related stroke risk. but xarelto® is the first and only once-a-day prescription blood thinner for patients with afib not caused by a heart valve problem. that doesn't require routine blood monitoring. so jim's not tied to that monitoring routine. [ gps ] proceed to the designated route. not today. [ male announcer ] for patients currently well managed on warfarin, there is limited information
on how xarelto® and warfarin compare in reducing the risk of stroke. xarelto® is just one pill a day taken with the evening meal. plus, with no known dietary restrictions, jim can eat the healthy foods he likes. do not stop taking xarelto®, rivaroxaban, without talking to the doctor who prescribes it as this may increase the risk of having a stroke. get help right away if you develop any symptoms like bleeding, unusual bruising, or tingling. you may have a higher risk of bleeding if you take xarelto® with aspirin products, nsaids or blood thinners. talk to your doctor before taking xarelto® if you have abnormal bleeding. xarelto® can cause bleeding, which can be serious, and rarely may lead to death. you are likely to bruise more easily on xarelto® and it may take longer for bleeding to stop. tell your doctors you are taking xarelto® before any planned medical or dental procedures. before starting xarelto®, tell your doctor about any conditions such as kidney, liver, or bleeding problems. xarelto® is not for patients with artificial heart valves. jim changed his routine. ask your doctor about xarelto®. once a day xarelto® means no regular blood monitoring --
no known dietary restrictions. for more information and savings options, call 1-888-xarelto or visit goxarelto.com. [ male announcer ] new vicks dayquil severe. helps relieve your ugliest, nastiest, roughest, toughest cold symptoms. new dayquil severe. with maximum symptom fighting ingredients. ♪ new vicks nyquil severe. helps relieve your ugliest, nastiest, roughest, toughest nighttime cold symptoms. new nyquil severe. with maximum symptom fighting ingredients. ♪ despite the failure by congress to respond to the sandy hook anniversary with any specific action, there was another important aspect of the national gun conversation that took a step forward today. this afternoon, vice president joe biden met with some of the
families of victims in the sandy hook shooting. a focus of the discussion, how we fundamental health treatment. the administration wants to add $100 million in the from a funding. and a medical and preventive approach is a key part of any plan to address mass shootings. but as we mark this solemn anniversary, many are asking whether politics will continue to constrain this policy c challenge. look, mental health screening does help identify shooters before they shoot in some situations. but so could background checks, which congress still refuse to say pass. and that approach is it not even wade into a more controversial policy. actually banning certain weapons that are more suited for offense than self defense. some gun advocates protest in an emergency or rural home that's far from police protection, a more offensive or semiautomatic weapon is the difference between life and death for some people. and others say the second amendment forbids restrictions on individual weapons, anyway. well, the second claim isn't true as a matter of history or
congressional action. and you don't need to look any further than the only gun-related law that congress has passed in sandy hook, in which president obama actually signed last night in a rare bipartisan vote, congress extended an existing ban on plastic firearms. think about what that means. congress reached a judgment that while you have a right to a gun, you don't have a right to any gun. or all guns. and that guns made out of plastic, which can evade metal detectors and law enforcement, are not okay. that's what congress said. and the same logic could apply to other weapons. senator chuck schumer tried to broaden this particular bill to require all plastic gubs, including some metal pieces in order to help tsa or other security screenings and that was rejected. these may not seem like big steps this week. but i think they provide an important reminder for all of us. we do regulate guns in this country, and we always have. and really reform will require
that we continue to regulate them in pursuit of public safety. not politics. now i hope you'll stay with us. we are going to hit on a lighter note in today's top lines. and first, did herman cain somehow maybe possibly, you'll have to ask him, play the race card on his own party? >> the rnc sent out a flier to some of its members, talking about potential 2016 presidential candidates. do you know what they had in common? they were all white. where was allen west? where was dr. ben carson? and have they ruled out the possibility that i might consider another run? clay. mom? come in here. come in where? welcome to my mom cave.
wow. sit down. you need some campbell's chunky soup before today's big game, new chunky cheeseburger. mmm. i love cheeseburgers. i know you do. when did you get this place? when i negotiated your new contract, it was part of the deal. cool. [ male announcer ] campbell's chunky soup. it fills you up right. [ male announcer ] campbell's chunky soup. peoi go to angie's listt for all kinds of reasons. to gauge whether or not the projects will be done in a timely fashion and within budget. angie's list members can tell you which provider is the best in town. you'll find reviews on everything from home repair to healthcare. now that we're expecting, i like the fact i can go onto angie's list and look for pediatricians. the service providers that i've found on angie's list actually have blown me away. find out why more than two million members count on angie's list. angie's list -- reviews you can trust.
lines. whose hungry for lunch? >> there's a new front in the republican civil war out there. >> no real central authority in the republican party right now. >> powerful republican senators were forced to defend their seats against their own party. >> there's the tea party side, and then there's the, you know, chris christie side. >> it ain't going to be jobs, sweetheart. >> i think christie is a promising figure. >> your rear end is going to get thrown in jail, idiot. >> i don't agree with him on a lot of things. i'm more conservative than he is. >> do you think he'll blow up on the campaign trail? >> are you stupid? >> i don't know him that well. i had lunch with him once. i wasn't a fan of the way he welcomed barack obama to new jersey when the hurricane hit. >> texas tea party candidate stockman has filed to run against john cornyn. >> a lot of people think that's healthy debate. >> he brings ted nugent to the state of the union. >> and you get a better end result when you do have people debating. >> fights taking place within the party and that's the way it
should be. >> i don't always agree with bill o'reilly. >> the republican party is all over the place. >> but this time on obama care, immigration, i absolutely agree with bill o'reilly. >> all they do is say no. the party of no. >> the republican party does have a branding problem. >> a few todd akins and richard murdochs. >> they've had one for years. >> maybe a witch or two will get nominated. >> i'm not a witch. >> talking about a potential 2016 presidential candidates. >> what's new? >> do you know what they had in common? >> i remember goldwater, rockefeller. >> they were all white. >> reagan. >> where was allen west? where was dr. ben carson? and have they ruled out the possibility that i might consider another run? >> don't rule it out. let's get to our panel. joining us now is karen finney, host of "disrupt with karen finney" on msnbc and james peterson, director of african studies at lehigh university.
welcome to you both. talk to me. there are many up this cycle. and half of them in the whole group facing these primary challenges. and this raises a theological question for republicans, the 11th commandment,000 shall not speak ill. isn't it hard to do that if half are in intraparty primaries? >> yeah, i think that rule was broken quite some time ago. and then a number of times since then. here's the problem, that i think the party has, right? they don't have sort of a unified here's what we're trying to accomplish. instead you've got the tea party folks who i don't even really know what it is they're trying to accomplish. they say smaller government and all these other things. but they seem to be more about destruction and obstruction. and then you've got, you know, some of the -- i guess they would consider the old guard republican party members. and so you've got this real clash in between. i think the challenge they're going to have is that in 2014,
that -- the midterm election is going to be nationalized. and that means that both parties will have to have a message. and no or a blank sheet of paper, as we have heard about, right, is not going to be a message. and when you have primaries where you're all fighting each other, it makes it much harder to make an argument to the american people as to why republicans should be in charge. >> well, and let me push back a little bit on that. and go to you, professor. what republicans would say is, hey, no is a message. no to the iraq war was a message that democrats carried against george w. bush. a president they disliked. we are saying no to this president, to this kind of government expansion. and if that sounds partisan, professor, they would say they're also saying no to their own incumbents. >> right. so, i mean, there's -- let's make a distinction here, right? so you can say no to some policies. but to have -- to say no to the processes of government, i think, is a little bit deeper. and i think that's really where the tea party has sort of dug themselves in. and my -- to karen's point, the
tea party has been all about violating reagan's so-called 11th kmamt rig commandment righ from the beginning. they're all about primarying and making sure they establish themselves to the right, people they refer to as rhinos or republicans in name only. so they're very much aware of that 11th commandment. >> it's not really fair to rhinos. that's an animal a lot of people love. >> republicans in name-only, meaning they're not authentic republicans. >> nobody ever thinks -- >> trying to expose them. >> yeah, it's my own issue, but nobody ever thinks about the rhino. >> you're so right. you know what, i'm going to go to the zoo, ari, and visit the rhinos at the zoo. just in your honor. >> do your part. karen, let's pick up on something i think is important the professor did hit on. which is that violation and that pickle that the party is in here. saying, well, the reagan rule has been broken a long time. take a listen to former vice president dick cheney, try to thread that needle. take a listen.
>> i don't think we ought to be in the business where we're out there condemning republicans who get elected to public office. >> what about challenging them? because your daughter is. >> my daughter is challenged. and i'm a strong supporter. i do believe we need a new generation of leaders. i think part of our problem is we get into the position where all we're doing is supporting the status quo in terms of the party, i think we're in trouble. >> so karen, that's like a real oops moment, because he's like, we shouldn't be doing this. what about your family doing this. oh, yeah. that's cool. >> well, i mean, what i would -- yes, he was threading the needle there. but i think it's one thing to say you're going to challenge someone. it's another thing to say when you get to using -- and i apologize ahead of time to the rhinos. but when you're essentially attacking what is supposed to be the core value system of the party, i think that's when it cuts a lot deeper. and the one point i would also make. remember in the '06, '5 midterm
elections, we had a country teen against the way president bush was adjudicating the war, but also a positive message. here are the things we want to work on. here are the things we would do. and each candidate was then able to take which piece was best for them and for their district or their state. and have something positive to talk about. and so far, i don't see any of that in the critique that you mostly see between the republicans is really, again, when you're talking about you're not conservative enough, you don't want to cut enough out of food stamps, that's not the kind of arguments you see democrats having, right? we're talking about -- i think we share some basic values, and we may have disagreements. but i don't think you see the same kind of sort of more vicious attacks on one another. >> no. i think that's right, karen. i think it's an important point. and really something you hear from white house officials, which is they weren't just no to the bush doctrine. they had their own doctrine, including engaging allies and adversaries in diplomacy, something we're seeing pay some dividends in iran, which is something we're going to be talking about. karen finney and james peterson,
thank you very much. permit me a reminder you can catch "disrupt with karen finney" every saturday and sunday at 4:00 p.m. here on msnbc. and coming up, will u.s. lawmakers give that obama doctrine and that diplomacy in iran a chance? this is the quicksilver cash back card from capital one. it's not the "limit the cash i earn every month" card. it's not the "i only earn decent rewards at the gas station" card. it's the no-games, no-signing up, everyday-rewarding, kung-fu-fighting, silver-lightning-in-a-bottle, bringing-home-the-bacon cash back card. this is the quicksilver card from capital one. unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere, every single day. so ask yourself, what's in your wallet? everywhere, every single day. across the country has brought me to the lovely city of boston.
cheers. and seeing as it's such a historic city, i'm sure they'll appreciate that geico's been saving people money for over 75 years. oh... dear, i've dropped my tea into the boston harbor. huhh... i guess this party's over. geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. -wow! -that feels wow! [ male announcer ] oral-b deep sweep, featuring three cleaning zones that remove up to 100% more plaque than a regular manual brush. guaranteed "wow" from oral-b. #1 dentist-recommended toothbrush brand worldwide. guaranteed "wow" from oral-b. if yand you're talking toevere rheuyour rheumatologistike me, about trying or adding a biologic. this is humira, adalimumab. this is humira working to help relieve my pain. this is humira helping me through the twists and turns. this is humira helping to protect my joints from further damage.
doctors have been prescribing humira for over ten years. humira works by targeting and helping to block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to ra symptoms. for many adults, humira is proven to help relieve pain and stop further joint damage. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal events, such as infections, lymphoma, or other types of cancer, have happened. blood, liver and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure have occurred. before starting humira , your doctor should test you for tb. ask your doctor if you live in or have been to a region where certain fungal infections are common. tell your doctor if you have had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have symptoms such as fever, fatigue, cough, or sores. you should not start humira if you have any kind of infection. ask your doctor if humira can work for you. this is humira at work.
secretary of state john kerry just appeared before the house foreign affairs committee to address critics of the administration head-on. >> the national security of the united states is stronger under this first step agreement than it was before. israel's national security is stronger than it was the day before we entered into this agreement. and the gulf and middle east interests are more secure than they were the day before we entered this agreement. >> today's hearing is important because many observers don't
actually get what the president is doing with iran, because they associate almost any diplomacy with weakness. but this president is, in fact, doing something different. he's practicing coercive diplomacy, and it's a foreign policy approach that includes talking and pressing with leaders of foreign nations directly. it's an approach, in fact, you may remember that obama laid out five years ago when as a candidate for president he said he would talk to leaders of iran, syria and north korea. >> ronald reagan and democratic presidents like jfk constantly spoke to soviet union at a time when ronald reagan called them an evil empire. we may not trust them. they may pose an extraordinary danger to this country. but we have the obligation to find areas where we can potentially move forward. >> now, fast forward to today. it looks like this coercive diplomacy is working. weapons inspectors have hit the ground in iran and syria. the stories of those countries
are very different. but both do involve credible u.s. threats of sanctions or force to push those nations towards u.s. objectives. in iran, the obama administration has achieved a short-term breakthrough where most modern administrations have failed. the new six-month nuclear freeze in exchange is a key diplomatic step, although a long term deal requires more work. secretary kerry also warned members of congress to back off the sanctions program while the six-month period plays out. for more on the diplomacy and the road ahead, we welcome dennis ross, former special assistant to president obama until 2011 and former diplomat for presidents clinton and george bush senior. thank you for joining us. >> my pleasure. >> so ambassador, you have described this as times as a cap for cap agreement with iran. walk us through what the administration is doing here, and what, if anything, we learned from today's hearing. >> well i think the key thing the administration is trying to
do is stop the clock. it understands at this point, it's not able to negotiate what i would call a rollback agreement, meaning you roll back their nuclear infrastructure in return for rolling back sanctions. and because of that, it wanted to stop the clock so the iranian nuclear program could not continue to move forward. and then see during that period of time could it negotiate what would be a rollback agreement. and i think what secretary kerry was trying to do today was on the one hand explain by stopping the clock the threat doesn't get worse on the one hand, and on the other hand, we have six months to try to determine, can we negotiate what can be an agreement that would ensure that iran is not a nuclear threshold state, meaning it is not a state that is on the threshold of being able to break out to a nuclear weapon. that's the key of what the administration is trying to do. and i think what secretary kerry is trying to do is to persuade to congress to provide the
administration some space over this next six months to see if they can negotiate a deal. >> you have some republicans in congress who feel it is their job to come in sideways right now and add sanctions or oh mess with the deadlines, essentially. kerry pushing back on that. but ambassador, how important is it for them, the administration, to have some room here, and what do you think of someone who has worked for this president of this critique we hear from relatively serious republicans who say look, talking to iran shows weakness? >> i think we have to be fair. many of the people on the hill are not just -- raising questions are not just republicans. they're democrats, as well. they look at the legacy of iranian behavior. >> let me tell you, ambassador. there has definitely been members -- senator schumer and others have asked how air-tight the agreement is and what this does for israel and other allies. but i haven't heard a lot of other senior democrats suggest they want to get in and adjust the sanctions deal. that's what some republicans have suggested. >> i actually think there are democrats raising that, as well.
and i think one of the reasons secretary kerry was making the case he was, is to try to appeal to both sides. meaning republicans and democrats alike. to give the administration spacy. look, the -- what makes this difficult is that, in fact, a., we look at what iranian behavior has been. b., it's the sanctions that brought the iranians to the table. and so you have some who think, why would you relax the pressure right now? and i think what the administration is saying, we're not really relaxing the pressure. we have allowed some relaxation of the sanctions, but we have not changed the sanctions regime. and because of that, we can maintain the pressure. >> sure. >> i think one thing the administration can do is to make it very clear that it is going to ensure that it implements in a very vigorous way the existing sanctions. and one thing it can do in addition to that, it can continue to designate those iranian individuals or companies who continue to violate the existing sanctions. that's not the same as adding new sanctions but shows we mean
what we say. >> i think that's important. i take your point there are democrats voicing that. i would not expect a democratic congress to actually change the deadlines. but we don't know and we'll have to see. i do want to play one more thing from the president, talking about the odds of a bigger breakthrough coming out of this process. take a listen. >> we have to not constantly assume that it's not possible for iran, like any country, to change over time. it may not be likely. if you asked me what is the likelihood we're able to arrive at the end state that i was just describing earlier, i wouldn't say that it's more than 50/50. but we have to try. >> ambassador, do you agree with that? >> i do agree with that. i think that this is still not a simple thing to achieve by any means. in many ways, this is a kind of
diplomatic challenge that is harder than almost any other diplomatic challenge you can imagine. nonetheless, i think it's worth trying. i think it's worth testing if for no other reason, you have to demonstrate you have done everything you could diplomatically. if it turns out that you're left with an option other than diplomacy, meaning the use of force. >> absolutely. important words. and important framework for thinking about where we head from here. ambassador dennis ross, thanks for your time. >> my pleasure. thank you. coming up up, financial regulators approve a sweeping new rule. but could it improve wall street? stay with us. ♪ ♪ ♪
banks can place huge, risky bets that are subsidized by taxpayers and that could pose a conflict of interest. it's for these reasons i'm proposing a simple and common sense reform, which we're calling the volcker rule. >> and the process to end bank practices and prevent another 2008 financial crisis is not swift. as you haired there, the president was laying out a rule, and it took four years. but now we're seeing those words put into action. with the approval today of, yes, the volcker rule. the big banks fought implementation of this rule since it was signed into law as part of the dodd/frank banking reforms of 2010. today the volcker rule, named after the former fed chair who did initially propose it, mandates that banks cannot use deposits insured by you, the rest of us, to make big, potentially disastrous market bets for them to make money. president obama issued a st. paul this afternoon, saying in part, our financial system will be safer, and the american people more secure because we fought to include this
protection in the law. joining us now is jared bernstein, senior fellow at the center for budget and policy priorities. and robert reich, an economics professor at ucla berkeley. labor secretary under president clinton, as you know. and his new film, "inequality for all," about america's widening income gap is currently in theatres. welcome to both of you. >> thank you. >> let me start with you, jared, the consumer financial protection bureau, some of the recent prosecutions we have seen of banks, including jpmorgan and other civil investigations. are we seeing something of a shift in the way the obama administration is able to combine basically prosecution and regulation to rein in some bank practices? yes. we're seeing something of a shift. the volcker rule, as articulated today, came out of a set of negotiations by a bunch of regulators. actually looks pretty good. and i'm not the only one to say that. believe me, i look at these things with a jaundiced eye. others oh worried it wouldn't be
teat enough are writing fairly flattering commentary about it. i do think there is a shift. the big question, though, is whether the oversight function, whether the regulators themselves will effectively implement these rules going forward. >> right. >> and you can build the best switch in the world, and still fall asleep at it. >> and let's take that to you, robert. your view? >> this is a step in the right direction. but enforcement is going to be a big issue. you've got five separate regulatory agencies, all involved with supervising the banks right now. i would have preferred from the beginning a glass/steagall act, which separated commercial from investment banking. but given that the banks lobbied so hard against that, they convinced the congress and much of the administration, that that would be the end of commercial banking, and investment banking as we know it. the volcker rule is pretty good. i mean -- >> let me ask you -- >> we'll know more.
>> but if you're sitting at home, and you don't do a lot with stocks or bonds, maybe you have a mixed fund in retirement. maybe you don't own anything in the markets. why should you care about this progress from the administration today? >> well, you care a lot, because if this doesn't work, we could have another meltdown. we could have another too big to fail. we could have another bailout of wall street. another cataclysm or near cataclysm that affects everybody. >> and jared, let me put up one thing from something you were working on, looking at basically this growth in the stock market and how it's totally outpacing regular gdp. 70% up in the stock market at s&p 500. a lot bigger than other indicators that affect main street. why are you concerned about that? >> it gets to what secretary risch was just talking about. if we have another financial bubble, and, by the way, it is precisely that that's brought down the last two business cycle
expansions, the damage is deep and long-lasting. look out your window and see that. and, in fact, i was talking about how the s&p was up 70% in real terms. median household income down something like 4%. since the expansion has been underway. so it's very important to implement these rules in the interest of better financial stability, so that we don't have another kind of bubble-bust repeat. this kind of economic shampoo cycle that's been so damaging in recent decades. >> yeah, i think that's key. and that really is the linkage. people who follow the markets follow some of this stuff more closely. but we're all in this together when you look at some of those risky practices. the proprietary trading, et cetera. jerryd bern seen, and secretary robert reich, thank you for your time. we're going to report quickly on late news from capitol hill, where we have just learned that budget co chair, paul ryan, tells reporters, quote, don't leave, because the budget deal might be on unveiled as early as this evening. and we'll keep an eye on that
for you. we will be right back with some words on obama care. [ female announcer ] we eased your back pain... ♪ ready or not. [ female announcer ] ...so you can be up there. here i come! [ female announcer ] ...down there, around there... and under there for him. tylenol® provides strong pain relief and won't irritate your stomach the way aleve® or even advil® can. but for everything we do, we know you do so much more. tylenol®. i use my citi thankyou card to get 2x the points at the coffee shop.at the office,o much more. which will help me get to a beach in miami and they'll be stuck at the cube farm. the citi thankyou preferred card. now earn 2x the points dining out, with no annual fee. go to citi.com/thankyoucards for all those who sleep too hot or too cool, for all those who sleep
now there's a solution. sleep number dual temp, the revolutionary temperature-balancing layer with active air technology that works on any mattress brand, including yours. it's only at a sleep number store, where this holiday season, the hottest sleep innovations make the coolest gifts - including sleep number dual temp. discover dual temp at one of our 425 sleep number stores nationwide. sleep number. comfort individualized.
♪ all i'd want is you to shade me and be my leaves ♪ grown in america. picked & packed at the peak of ripeness. the same essential nutrients as fresh. del monte. bursting with life™. we are entering a home stretch for obama care. people who don't have insurance must enroll in a private exchange in order to be covered next year. if they don't, they'll be violating the law and face a fine of $95 or more for wealthier americans. whether republicans like it or not, that is the law. and it's not going anywhere. >> the affordable care act has gone through every single democratic process. all three branches of government. it's the law of the land. it's here to stay. >> washington may not realize it, but we are actually approaching the line where obama care as a political debate ends.
and obama care as federal law begins. and that's a fundamental test for congressional republicans. they've made their complaints about this policy clear, and they have every right to do that. but in a few weeks, the legal penalty kicks in. that penalty, the individual mandate, is designed to shift our treatment of the uninsured from the emergency room to preventive care, and to change our cultural norms around health insurance, much as public safety laws once shifted americans' attitudes toward seatbelts or drinking and driving or smoking. and that's part of why this penalty is distinct from past scuffles over obama care. if you put aside the posturing, the truth is the website drama was different because it does provide a effective online change. calls to fix the website were consistent with that goal. and the medicaid fight does let states decline medicaid funds. governors may hurt their states by opting out but it's a legitimate option under the law. the mandate does not offer such
choices. it requires universal coverage. and that's the dilemma for many congressional republicans now. can they transition to respecting the law of the land, even as they argue for change at the ballot box? it's the difference between offering policy criticism and offering cover to people who don't want to follow the law. that criticism hasn't helped republicans much, because bad press about obama care has a half life of about ten days. so the website problems were front painful news for a while. but now the site is working better. i looked. the "new york times" put thatten a-21 today and like clockwork when this happens, republicans will switch to another thing to criticize. >> first it was the website. didn't work. consumer report -- have you ever noticed consumer report to recommend you not to go to a website? they recommended americans not to go to the website, because the fear of having fraud. >> what we're seeing here is a pattern of broken promises from the administration. >> or a pattern of criticism
regardless of the facts. here's the thing about this, though. it's not working. take a look at this. three years of sustained attacks on obama care have failed to shift most americans' views of whether the law helps them. a steady majority thinks it will have no impact or help them. 40% say it will make them worse off. and that number hasn't risen, . in fact, it's dropped slightly since 2010. in the end, i think congressional republicans can keep complaining. we know critics are going to criticize. but starting january 1st, they also have an obligation to ensure americans follow the law. that is the very least people demand from our lawmakers. all right. that's it for me. thank you for watching. and coming up right now, "the ed show" with ed schultz.
good evening, americans. and welcome to "the ed show." live from new york. let's get to work. we refuse to let detroit go bankrupt. >> i'm a son of detroit. i was born in detroit. my dad was head of a car company. i like american cars. and i would do nothing to hurt the u.s. auto industry. >> dude, where's my car. >> mitt romney wrote in the "detroit free press," let detroit go bankrupt. in other words, let them die. >> you said, quote, if general motors, ford and chrysler get the bailout their chief executives asked for yesterday, you can kiss the american automotive industry goodbye. >> that's exactly right. if you write a check, they're going out of