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tv   NOW With Alex Wagner  MSNBC  May 12, 2014 1:00pm-2:01pm PDT

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is thousand oi"now". >> benghazi. >> clinton. >> benghazi committee -- >> looking like a republican strategy to attack hillary clinton's record. house speaker john boehner tweeting a photo of his appointees already at work. >> they're auditioning to be the anti-hillary. >> hillary opted against a 2016 run. >> benghazi. >> i don't think she'll get scared off. her decisions won't be determined by the republican base. >> if they look like they're being bullies, they won't be too equip themselves with women voters. >> benghazi. >> clinton. >> they are obsessed. >> it will be a long campaign. 2 1/2 years of this. >> this is a z lookloser issue e republican party. >> benghazi.
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>> clinton. >> well, democrats debate when or not to participate in the house select committee on benghazi, it also remains a subject of debate what exactly the goals of the committee it actually are. for republicans, the goal officially at least seems for be to ask questions that have already been answered. >> tell me the single biggest question you want to ask. >> the british ambassador was almostassinated. we were the last flag flying in benghazi and i would like to know why. >> as the huffington "post" poib points outs hillary clinton already answered that had question last year. >> the continintelligence professionals and others did not recommend abandoning benghazi in part because over the last years, we have become accustomed
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to operating in dangerous places. we do by necessity rely on security professionals to implement protocols and procedures necessary to keep our people safe. and as i said in my opening statements, i have a lot of confidence in them because, you know, most of the time they get it right. >> maybe congressmen is simply unfamiliar. perhaps someone will show him the transcript. what other pressing benghazi related questions are keeping republicans up at night? >> where was the president and what did he do the night of the attack. >> i believe the president was at the white house and he was in communication with some of the folks in his administration in and around the time of the attacks. >> do you know where the president was and what he was doing during the seven hours much the attack? >> no, sir, i do not. >> maybe he's simply unfamiliar where this official white house photograph showing president obama in the oval office the
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night of the attack. discussing the situation with dennis mcdonough, joe biden and jack lew. what other pressing benghazi related questions are keeping republicans up at night? how about the gop concern with the administration giving a stand down order refusing to come to the aid of those at the. >> when the secretary of defense had assets that key have begun spinning off, doctor was there not one order given to turn on one dweepartment of against as set. i have my suspicions which is secretary clinton was on tstand down. >> never nind tmind it was conc there was no stand down order in
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tripoli. maybe someone, maybe even someone in their own caucus, will familiarize the republican party and the chairman they have tasked to head the house select committee on benghazi that all the questions they are seeking to answer have been addressed exhaustively in reports from the accountability review board. the senate intelligence committee. the house armed services committee. the house foreign affairs committee. and the house committee on oversight and government reform. all of these reports have raised one red flag. serious concerns about security short comings at american dip p low matt tick outposts. unfortunately, that conclusion is the one thing that the gop does not seem to really care about all that much. precisely up in of these reportings and hearings and photographs have revealed evidence of a white house coverup. but of course that is the one thing that the gop actually seems to care about. joining me now is democratic representative from new york's
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third congressional district and chairman of the campaign committee, congressman steefrve israel. as we continue to debate whether or not the committee is worst neb's time, aanybody's time, wi democrats participate? >> we will participate if we have a fair balanced inquiry. but republicans have shown thus that they're interested in a campaign strategy. they have raised money on this select committee. there was and on glt line solicitation based on this select committee. they have pre-determined the outcome. every inquiry, they want this to be a campaign strategy. we continue to hope for balanced standards. equal members on both sides of
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the i'laisle, equal access to witnesses and a process designed to get answers. >> you talk about fair and balanced. which is one thing conservatives would like given their past history. equal numbers of seats seems to be something other member of your party have given up on. the one major sticking point is subpoena power. would you endorse a process that did not give democrats subpoena power? >> it would be very difficult to do that. we know from our license committee that members of the democratic caucus on that committee learned about subpoenas from msnbc. from reading about it in the press. they weren't allowed to interview witnesses. they would have access to witnesses when the hearings began. that is not an inquiry, that is designed for accomplish partisan objectives. and i would have a hard time with that. still in all, this is a decision that our caucus will make collectively and we're still waiting. we are at the table waiting for the republican leadership to
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tell us is this going to be a fair process that the american people deserve or is this going to be an unfair process that is engineereded as campaign strat. >> gouddy accused democrats of have being amnesia. i want to give you a chance to respond to that first. >> well, he's just flat wrong. this is a permanent select committee. this was a tragedy that should not be exploited by the nrcc based on this permanent select committee. by the way, he agrees with me. other notable republicans have agreed with my position that this should not be a fund raising strategy. and still even today the nrcc continues to use this permanent select committee not to seek answers to questions but to seek dollars from big supporters. >> i've seen dccced as that talk
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about ncc fundraising. so isn't that just a vicious cycle in republicans fund raise off of a tragedy, democrats say it's not okay. >> we are not raising money of a permanent select committee. republicans in congress have done just that. >> congressman steve israel, thank you so much for your time and thoughts. joining me now is senior writer for politico, glenn thrush, and also sam stein. sam, i want to go with you first. we were quoting the piece you had today about the fact that trey gowdy's big question has already been answered. do you think it's laziness, bad preparation? how does trey gowdy not know that very yes has been answered by hillary clinton in testimony a year ago. >> i'm not sure whyhas been ans by hillary clinton in testimony a year ago. >> i'm not sure why he put that forth. there have been other questions he's put forth that have also
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been answered. but it underscores to a large extent just how comprehensive the investigation has already been. a lot information coming from the investigations. to cgowdy's credit, a lot touchs different aspects from that night and maybe it hasn't been put into a comprehensive investigation, but at this point in time people probably know what remains to be answered. there are some questions that remain to be answered. >> i guess if there is something new to mind here, there is one they think new to mind here, which is maybe ben rose's e-mail, but as dave weil points out, the big question over the talking points and how much of the information from the cia rhodes misinterpreted or interpreted conveniently for political purposes, it
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circulated the intel that the attacks grew out of a demonstration, wonder if you can build an entire select committee over litigating that single point. >> well, here's what i foind really interesting. we're still how many months into this, 18 months since the attack roughly. we're still talking about talking points, communication between agents and officials at the state department it operationally involved. we're talk about talking points. we haven't gotten any detail operationally to the same extent that we've gotten on the public relations end. if people are serious about the investigation, they have to move it away from the figures that the republicans are most interested in speaking for, hillary clinton and president obama. if we really want to know what happened here, we need to get to the agent level and to the -- >> but i feel like all those committees point to one thing, which is that there were some
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very bad decisions made. some made in earnest, some not. there are things that could be put in place. but republicans have not seized on that. they have focused this on talking points. >> but then what you saw yesterday from trey gowdy was an attempt to move it back a little bit. shift the focus back to what the intelligence apparatus was saying to american officials prior to the attacks. that's why he was asking why were we the last flag flying there because there were a series of events in benghazi and libya that underscore just how perilous the security situation was there. and there are legitimate questions that have been asked and answered and ask be acan be asked about why the clinton department did not respond more aggressively. >> do you think hillary clinton and this administration need to do something different than what they are currently doing? >> they have to answer a lot of these questions. as sam said, i don't think the objection here is to having a
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free and open inquiry that is based on kind of a rational process. the issue here is sort of making the conclusions first and drawing them later. what i am so confused about, and i have tried to follow this story, i've followed it as a reporter, is to establish a fact pattern so we even know what questions are the sale yeient questions to ask. what is it that you want to know? >> that is the problem. there are so many questions being raised as if they haven't been answered when in fact several inquiries have been made. i get that you want to put it all into one comprehensive study, but when the person investigating comes out and says this is a trial, which is sexually whctio essentially what trey gowdy said, it raises suspicions. >> also when you start fundraising off of it in this
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shameless fashion. darrell issa has raised $2.5 million in cycle. he will make more this cycle at this pace than his first what is it four terms. >> caller: bine combined. >> he's making more of on this than the low jack or whatever the heck it was. >> it kind of doesn't matter what the facts are -- >> but it does. >> but for the republicans who are leading the charge on this, it didn't really matter what the facts are. >> it ultimately does. >> if it comes out and looks line transparent fund raising or campaigning or that they picked it up because of the attacks on obama care were seeming futile, then it will have a blow back. >> look at the polls. our regular voters, people who will really impact elections apart from the cul de sac, are
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people really focused on this testify? when you keep asking question after question, the deeper you get into the weeds, you lose even more people. what percentage of the american electorate is focused on this. >> just in terms of who is giving money to darrell issa for his benghazi investigations, the new republic reports that it's the republican sgrgrass roots. they may not be swing voters, but they may come out and vote in the midterms. and that seems to be the root of the strategy. >> but then you see john boehner come out for some of these press conferences and he decembsperat wants to move the conversation off of benghazi. almost the sense that there are two conversations. >> to add to what sam is saying, we have a real scandal involving a cabinet secretary.
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his name is eric shinseki. what is going on at the v.a. is miserable. and yet why aren't we seeing a special select committee on the v.a. do you think you would be getting that much objection from the democrats if it you saw republicans pursuing that? i think you would get real bipartisan support on that. >> there is a hearing on that for thursday. and secretary shinseki will be testifying. so we will be all ears. gentlemen, if you guys don't know what the questions we are supposed to be asking are, then i certainly don't. thank you as always for your time and thoughts. of it after the break, a farce, a sham and something illegal. those are some of the descriptions used to describe a new referendum vote in eastern ukraine. another term? deadly. details on that next. you got the bargain kind?
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the much feared splintering of ukraine may be you saunder w. this afternoon sanctions were expanded. the response comes after separatists in two eastern you ukranian provinces almost immediately declared victory yesterday in a hastily convened referendum vote. a vote to decide whether those parts of the country will support the central government in kiev. both that government as well as those of the u.s. and many european countries call the sanctions illegal and a sham. last week, putin urged the separatists to hold the votes at a later date and today stopped short of full recognition of the results of the refer ren gum.
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putin's coldish should exercise did not stop the self proclaim leader of to accept the results. today the head of the separatist militants issued a decree announcing an anti-terrorist operation against pro you ukrainian forces. in the meantime, nato satellite images show russian troops within 75 miles of the ukrainian border. a top government official today said a column of armored vehicles on the russian side of the border had disguised themselves as u.n. peace keeping forces. coming up, a big day for the markets on wall street. dow and s&p both close at record highs. details straight ahead. also, marco i'm not a scientist, man, rubio ups his
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a newly released video appears to show many of the nearly 300 nigerian girls abducted by boko haram. but it is what the tape doesn't show that is raising new questions. the former u.s. ambassador to nigeria john campbell and women for women international join me next. and now angie's list is revolutionizing local service again. you can easily buy and schedule services from top-rated providers. conveniently stay up to date on progress. and effortlessly turn your photos into finished projects with our snapfix app.
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new video released today by boko haram appears to show about 100 of the 276 nigerian school girls would were kidnapped nearly four weeks ago by the group. in the video, the girls appear
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to be praying. boko haram's leader claims these girls have converted to islam and will not be released until militant prisoners are released. interior minister called the conditions absurd. goodluck jonathan has reportedly agreed to attend a security summit in paris this saturday to focus regional efforts to combatting the jihadist group. joining me now is founder and ceo for women for women international and former ambassador john campbell. ambassador campbell, let me start with you. what did you make of this video and the sort of pre-conditions said by boko haram for their release? do you think this signals that they are open to some kind of conversation with the nigerian government over the fate of these 276 girls?
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>> i think what sha cow is doing is playing the nigerian community and go. almost like a violin. the offer is essentially win/win from his perspective. if international pressure is sufficient to get the nigerian government to agree to release boko haram detaindetainees, wha will be doing is augmenting the strength of boko haram. i think it would be extremely difficult for the nigerian government to do that. f but in a weird and perverted way, what he's doing is saying you can have the girls back if you agree to conditions that would be very difficult for any sovereign government to accept.
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>> in terms of the international outrage, one part of me says it's great that the world is hash tagging save our ghiirls. on the other hand, there is leverage to be had and boko haram may be using to their own advantage. what is your read on the situation from international perspective? >> i think it's important that we have pressure from the international community. this has been going on for almost a month now and the nigerian government has not really paid attention to it had it not been from the community pressure. parents have been in dialogue with their girls over cell phone for an entire week and they couldn't send the messages to tell them this is the location, this is the phone calls. so i think had it not been for the international community pressure, nigerian ghoechovernm
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would not have paid attention. but i also think boko haram is not representative of islam. and that the fact that even most of saudi arabia, the council of muslim scholars, every are condemning boko haram saying this is not a reflection of -- >> do you think they can excerpt pressure on boko haram in terms of being part of the muslim world? >> i don't know if they have any relationship with them, but they can deny his claim for will la legitimacy and that hurt him more than hurts him and they are doing that saying this is not reflection of islam. so that is helpful in his negotiation in my opinion. >> ambassador, there was an interesting story on fox today that discusses the tension between bow company that him are
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a and the nigerian government and how they are sort of effectively playing a losing happened. i will read an excerpt from the piece. every time boko haram gives northern nigerians a reason to hate them, it seems the nigerian government will outdo them. in mid march, some locals alerted the government boko haram was in their village, but military did nothing no several days and then sent air force jets. ten civilians were killed. boko haram untouched. that is a scathing assessment. was that your experience? >> well, i was ambassador for nigeria from 2004 to 2007. it was a very different government then. the one now does indeed seem to be extraordinarily theckless. it has basically approached boko haram as a coukouncounterterror
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issue and with an extremely heavy hand. there have been quite credible reports of the security forces killing hundreds and hundreds of people. many people in northern nigeria will say they are as frightened of the security forces as they are of boko haram. >> i don't want to -- as we talk about this sort of back and forth between the nigerian government and this jihadist terrorist group, we can't lose focus on the fundamental issue which is the role of women in the developing world and the importance of women in economic security. there is a piece in sunday's "new york times," why are so fanatics so terrified of girls' education? because there is no force more powerful to transform a society. the greatest threat isn't drones, but girls reading books. and he says in that way it makes complete accepts that bsense th
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would target these children. >> yes, that is true. and i also think that this is a desperate act for attention. islamic history, for example women and girls have never been touched, never kidnapped, raped, any of these things in the entire history. and is this a relatively new phenomenon that we're seeing these fundamentalist groups are kidnapping and shooting girls.t phenomenon that we're seeing these fundamentalist groups are kidnapping and shooting girls. so almost an act desperation. >> do you think there are strong enough advocates for women's education in these parts? >> not quite enough yet. otherwise we would not have seen what is happening right now. i also want to actually piggyback on what the ambassador has said. the fact that nigeria has so much corruption in it and so much poverty, it is enabling fundamentalist groups to rise up. the issue of poverty enables
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fundamentalists to rise up and have more of a say and more of an impact on these communities. so it's not only about girls education, it's also about poverty elimination. we need to combine these two in order to eradicate fundamentalists. >> and to that point, this is one of the poorest areas in nigeria. thank you both for your time and thoughts. >> thank you. coming up, michael sam could change professional sports history simply by playing one down of football. but in missouri where the defensive end hopes to ply his trade, sam could lose his job simply by acknowledging that he's sga. details on that ahead. how did we do it last time? i don't know... i forget.
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senator marco rubio 1e9s h s senator marco rubio 1e9s hets h eyes to the 2016 prize and plays to the far right base by becoming a climate change deper. but of course. michael steele a michael steele next, but first josh has the market wrap. >> here is a look at how the stocks stand going into tomorrow. the dow and s&p 500 both moving to record finishes. that is as tech shares surge and m and a activity helped put bulls in charge. dow gained 112, s&p 18, and nasdaq 71. that's it from cnbc, first in business worldwide.
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do you think you're ready to be president? >> i do. but i think that's true for multiple other people that would want to run. i think the president has to have a clear vision of where the country needs to know and clear ideas about how to get it there
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and think we're blessed in our party to have a number of people that fit that criteria. >> #blessed. to hear marco rubio tell it, he's delighted to have a slew of republican rivals with eyes on the white house in 2016. but that does that mean the florida senator is not sweating it out. take for example the issue of climate change. which is really no big deal since it simply doesn't exist. >> i do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic it changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it. and i do not believe the laws they propose we pass will do anything about it exceptful destroy our economy. >> or is it just that acknowledging scientific conclusions would destroy rubios hopes of winning a presidential primary. doing his best to outdeny the climate dep deniers, rubio dismd the 97% of scientists who
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believe it is real and manmade. but according to rubio logic, a handful of decades might actually be a very long time. this is the same guy who in 2012 said he wasn't sure whether the earth was created in seven days or seven actual eras, in which he noted i'm not a scientist, man. on that, we can all agree. joining me now is e. j. dionne and michael steele. chairman, let me start with you. did he really need to go here, chairman? did he really need to put on the climate denial hat? >> to the september thtepeptemb this is going to be a competitive race that has
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already begun, i think the senator after confabbing high school his team decided to lay . but you have to get in pace with what is currently out there. i think the idea that we can have a more intelligent discussion on something like the climate which is rooted in history than this as far asffan notion is not the best way to start it. so we'll see how it plays out. may give you brown anyie points the early going, but they can very easily be taken away as we saw with immigration and a few other issues. so i think this is the beginning of what will be a very, very long cam pan for the white house. >> yeah, a long slide into just misinformation and ignorance.
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e.j., andy borre borowitz that ignorance credentials. a quote that says any questions about the authenticity about my ignorance are deeply offensive. but it does seem like we are in a race to the bottom effectively when it comes to science and fact in certain corners of the republican party. >> first of all, i'm personally grateful to senator rubio because from now on, i'm going to describe myself as only a handful of decades old. >> you could be seven days old or seven earth ear rras old. anyway, ticontinue. >> it's unfortunate what has happened to the republican party. if you go back to 2007 or 2008, it was not forbidden by some office of political correctness to say there is a human cause to
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global warming. we can have a big argument over exactly what we should do about it, but you had senator mccain had a giood bill with senator lieberman and senator bob corker talked about a carbon taxi. i guess republicans can pride themselves on standing up for the scientific minority that denies something is going on. but a lot of americans aren't exactly sure what is going on here, but they do know that some very strange things have been happening with the weather. they do see the evidence that the climate -- a report put out recently, they know something is going on here. so i think it is very unfortunate that this has now become -- i don't know if it's ideological or theological or
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just maybe counting on a different base. but it's peculiar what has happened to the republicans. >> and for someone from florida, the national climate assessment has located miami as the city most threatened by climate change in this country. i want to move on, chairman steele, e. sj. brought up the subject of whether the republicans are representing minorities in terms of science. but there was a landmark moment in some ways a few days ago when rand paul decided to weigh in on the issue of vote are suppression laws. i want to play the clip. only a full screen unfortunately. but "new york times" reports that rand paul said everybody's gone completely crazy on the voter i.d. thing. i think it's wrong for republicans to go too crazy because it's offending people. well, it is like -- he said it. the question is, chairman, does this -- how difficult does it make this for rand paul if he seeks the party's nomination and
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will the republican party actually listen to him on a policy listen? >> i'll flip it. the party should listen to him on this and he's vooabsolutely right to characterize it that way and i think the opportunity for rand paul as you look at 2016 is going to be to define what that conversation should be with legitimate concerns that african-americans have about the reality and the perception that there are being disenfranchised by policies around the country when it comes to voting rights. so i think rand paul is laying down very profound and i think important markers that will add a a decide mention to that stage when it occurs. even if the question isn't raised, i can see rand paul injecting these types of points in the conversation and how the other folks on the stage and how the moderators and party as a whole handle that, i'm really
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curious to see. i think it's important and bull headed and wrong headed the approach we've taken on this issue. we've not addressed the supreme court's decision with respect to basically gutting the civil rights -- voting rights act, sort of leaving it up in the air. so i think he has begun to carve out space which is a smart space to be into have an honest discussion. we'll see, but i think he could potentially do that. >> courage is a rare thing in american politics. and i want to that you can about something y talk about something you wrote about democrats. we're talk a lot about which party has control of the senate after the midterm. you write even as democrats respond to widespread discontent, they also need to convince americans that obama's tenure gives them a good deal to cheer about. doing both at once is more challenging than repeating the word benghazi. this is good advice i think, but democrats have proven sort of
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constitutionally unable to talk about the good news in any sort of broad and far reaching, you know, manner. and you rightfully point out that's because it's not good news for a lot of middle class americans. how do they tread that line between sympathy and idealism? >> first, i don't get to do this very often. good for rand paul on voter suppression. i think it's a difficult problem the democrats have. on the one hand, not just for political reasons because a lot of people are hurting and they don't want to sound out of touch by saying how great things are, but also as a matter of principle, democrats are or ought to be unhappy that there are so many stagnant incomes out there, that inquality has grown. so they have that on the one side. but if they don't make the case for their policies, nobody else is going to make it for them. if they don't make the case that actually even though it's the not fast enough, it's not good enough, the economy has started
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to grow. a lot of bad things would have happened. and they need a little bit of optimism in the country because a pessimistic party never wins elections in this country. i think that is the biggest problem for the right right now is how pessimistic conservatives have become. democrats have to convey a sense of optimism that we're move management right direction even if we have to move faster. >> you know, michael steele, before we go, the bar for policy is quite low given what is being proposed on the republican side of the aisle. or what isn't. ted cruz released his fourth report on the quote obama's administration lawlessness. it includes the administration's decision to shut down an amish farm for selling up pat chur rised milk across state lines and unilaterally increasing the minimum wage for federal contract workers. is this the stuff that republican voters are hungry for, talk of unpasteurized milk
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and the freedom to keep and drink unpasteurized milk across state lines? >> it feeds the base and that's enough for right now. i think it's an enormous missed opportunity otherwise to really up the level of discussion as you noted on policy around some big ideas which i think still exist within the party. lowest common denominator rules the day and you play to that base. and unfortunately, the rest of the country has to wait and see what happens come the fall. >> unpasteurized milk across state lines. we have to leave it there. >> a new issue. >> exactly. thank you as always, guys. breaking news to report. nbc news confirms that democratic conditioning al candidate in north carolina keith crisco has died. he reportedly suffered injuries after falling in his home. he was in a race with clay and i
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can clay akin. the rams break new ground by picking michael sam. but what may be truly ground breaking is the impact that sam's selection could have on gay residents in his new home state. i'm sinora and this is my son, chris. i'm a messy person. i don't like cleaning. i love my son, but he never cleans up. always leaves a trail of crumbs behind. you're going to have a problem with getting a wife. uh, yeah, i guess. [ laughs ] this is ridiculous. christopher glenn! [ doorbell rings ] what is that? swiffer sweep & trap. i think i can use this. it picks up everything. i like this. that's a lot of dirt. it's that easy! good job chris! i think a woman will probably come your way. [ both laugh ] i think a woman will probably come your way. i missed you, too.ou. hi buddy.
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on saturday, when the st. louis rams selected him in the 7th round, university of missouri defensive end michael sam became the first openly gay man to be drafted in the nfl. reactions ranged there hopeful to jubilant. president obama said it was an important step forward in our nation's skroujourney. and while this is indeed
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historic, there is one problem. as claire mccaskill pointed out, michael sam could still be fired for just being gay according to missouri law. what does missouri law have to say? the missouri legislature held hearings this march on a bill to prevent workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. so far the bill has gone nowhere which means, yes, michael sam could be fired for being gay. but missouri isn't the only state in the union to sanction discrimination. 29 states currently allow an employer to fire someone based on sexual orientation. and one of the reasons l sgchlt bt americans face discrimination on a state by state basis in over half the country is a familiar culprit, it is congress. last november, a bipartisan coalition of senators passed the employment nondiscrimination act, a federal ban on work place discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. to give you a sense of just how overdue that was, those senators
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passed enda 19 years after it was first introduced. here is what senator tammy baldwin, america's first openly gay senator, had to say at that time. >> for folks like myself in the lgbt community, the opportunity to be judged it in the workplace by your skills and qualifications, your loyalty, your work ethic, is an important pronouncement for this nation. >> despite this bipartisan good will and reaffirmation of american principle, the republican controlled house does absolutely nothing. >> if people are already protected in the workplace, i'm opposed to continuing this. >> people in speaker john boehner's parlance apparently
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does not mean gay and transgendered people. perhaps house republicans and their leader will come up with a definition of people that is a little more inclusive and a lot more accurate. that is all for "now". i'll see you back here tomorrow at 4:00 p.m.. the ed show is up next. good evening, americans. welcome to the ed show live from new york. i'm ready to go. let's get to work. >> a dramatic development in the saga surrounding bun decidy. the fbi is on the case. >> a normal investigation into alleged death threats, intimidation and possible weapons violations. >> many in the crowd had pointed weapons at officers. >> these people are waiting for the big federal apocalypse. >> if we're here to make

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