tv Special Report With Bret Baier FOX News July 22, 2009 4:00am-5:00am EDT
[captioning made possible by fox news channel] captioned by the national captioning institute ---www.ncicap.org--- bret: next on "special report" the president's healthcare plans continue to be held hostage by other democrats. we will look at what both sides are saying. is socialized medicine working in other countries? we will examine it in great britain. the president's plan to close guantanomo bay are already behind schedule. brit hume has thoughts about the man trying to get the american economy back on track. all that, plus the all-star panel, right here, right now. cheer welcome to washington, i'm bret baier. president obama today tried to shift the focus of the healthcare reform battle, attacking the people who are attacking his plan. his statement came as the
majority leader in the house indicated the president's deadline p for a reform bill may not be met, and the president met with one group of hold-out democrats. correspondent shannon beam begins our coverage. >> we are closer than ever before to the reform that the american people need, and we're going to get the job done. >> a key group of democrats could stand in the way of the president's all-out push to get healthcare reform accomplished and soon. shortly after his rose garden address, the president met with democrats from the energy and commerce committee, controlled by the so-called blue dog democrats. the 51 congressmen and women who essentially brought the healthcare debate to a grinding halt in washington tuesday. >> there is about ten issues that we're concerned with. obviously cost cut something first on that list. today, in more than an hour that we spent with the president today, focused specifically on cost containment. >> the blue dogs call themselves fiscally
conservative democrats who represent mainstream america the mounting price tag for reform is something they have refused to accept thus far. their resistance for the health conference committee chairman henry waxman was crucial at a markup session today, fearing that the blue dogs were anything but certain. following the white house meeting, waxman who, is not a blue dog, felt the meeting served to allay at least one of the blue dogs' biggest concerns. >> and the president expressed his concern about the great strong firm commitment that the legislation that he signs will have to be deficit neutral, and will hold down the costs in the future. >> in the meantime, are republican leaders are highlighting this schism across the aisle and welcoming democrats to join them in their opposition. >> there is a bispart san committee forming against the proposal. >> in a recent showdown over the cap and trade bill, blue dogs fell in line behind nancy pelosi, giving her a big win,
but republicans think that lockstep obedience may be wearing thin. >> there are some members on the democrat side that got both arms broken during the cap and trade debate on the floor. >> if you are a member who voted for cap and trade and had a bad experience back home, you are not looking forward to a bad vote on a healthcare bill that is not going to go anywhere in the senate and will include a tax increase and then going home to your district and trying to sell that. the chair of the blue dogs health task force said there was a break thru at the white house. they said a verb verbal breakthrough was made to put together public and private individuals to work together to bring down costs. leaders on the senate side have said they will not agree to that plan. this may be a bit of minor progress, but really we understand there is still much more trouble on the horizon. you heard today that the house energy and commerce committee cancelled its markup session. we just got word they cancelled it again for tomorrow. bret. bret: we will be following it
every step of the way. shannon bream live on capitol hill. we want to give you a feel for where we are in all of this. let's look at what is on the table in both the house and the senate. here is chief political correspondent carl cameron. >> in the house, two committees, the tax writing ways and means committee and the education and labor committee have both passed separate versions of healthcare reform. both have a public option for government-run insurance. the non-partisan congressional budget office says the ways and means version would total more than $1 trillion over a decade, raise taxes and add to the federal deficit. the only thing bipartisan in the house is the opposition. six democrats and the two committees joined all the republicans voting against both bills. the third house committee, energy and commerce, has ground to a halt because of democratic opposition. the conservative blue dogs' stalemate in energy and commerce effectively stalled things in the full house because all three bills must be merged into one before the full house can hold its final passage vote.
on the senate side of the capitol, there are two bills -- health education labor and pensions, has already passed ted kennedy's version of healthcare, and contains a public option and estimated to cost $1.2 trillion. like the house, the senate has a committee with a log jam delay. it is senate finance. harry reid is trying to light a fire under lawmakers' feet. >> i'm very hopeful that they will have a bill this week and can start marking it up as early as saturday. >> actually, the members of the finance committee have sounded pessimistic about that for days. it is the only committee in the senate or house in which majority democrats are really accepting suggestions and working with republicans. after weeks of struggling and ignoring their own and the p president's deadlines, they are still unable ting a agree on how best to contain healthcare costs or pay for the reforms, all of which leaves the full senate stalled because the two versions must be combined into a single version before the full senate can vote on its final passage.
only then can the house and senate go to a committee of conference to hammer out all the differences in the final house and senate versions. democratic leaders had hoped for at least some meager areas of principled agreement that they could give to the pez to announce at tomorrow's -- give to the president to announce at tomorrow's primetime news conference. even though harry reid says he can get something this week, the reason he is saying that because he wants to keep their feet to the fire in order to keep them at work. bret: carl, thank you. fox news will, of course, have continuing coverage of the healthcare reform efforts here in washington. stay with fox news channel at foxnews.com for all the latest developments. of course, join us for the president's primetime news conference at 8:00 p.m. eastern wednesday night. at the height of the healthcare debate is money. money was also behind a big vote in the senate today to stop production of the country's most advanced fighter jet. national security correspondent jennifer griffin
has details from the pentagon. >> the f-22 is known for its dogfighting capability, but it lost a key battle in the senate today where lawmakers voted 58-40 to strip from the defense authorization bill nearly $2 billion to build state-of-the-art stealth fighters n a rare am alignment, president mccain took president obama's side an teamed up with democratic senator carl levin to introduce the amendment that halted funding of 7 additional f-220's that the pentagon says it doesn't need. >> it really boils down to whether we're going to continue the business as usual of once a weapons system gets into full p production it never dies, or whether we're going to take the necessary steps to really e form the acquisition process. >> critics say the planes are roop overpriced, between -- are overpriced, between $130
million and $150 million a piece and the money would be better spent on the f-35, a fighter plane that could be used by all the armed services but democratic and republican lawmakers from the 44 states where lockheed martin and boeing make parts for the f-22 argue that 24,000 jobs will be lost, especially in player yet that, georgia. sh especially in marietta, georgia. >> if they lobbied on this issue and this was spent, it would be a dollar we can't spend for troops or prepare for future threats or protect the american people. >> the senate continued to debate the defense authorization bill tomorrow, up for a vote and expected to pass is an amendment introduced by republican senator john thune of south dakota that would allow citizens with concealed gun permits to cross state lines with the guns. democrats are fighting against that amendment argue that arms traffickers and people with
criminal records who wouldn't normally be allowed to carry concealed weapons would receive permits in states where laws are weak. bret: we will be following that vote. jennifer griffin live at the pentagon. the senate judiciary committee has pushed back its vote on supreme court nominee sonia sotomayor for one week, at the request of republicans. the new date is july 28. a fourth republican has announced support for the president's pick. susan collins joins olympia snowe and richard lugar and mel martinez. brit hume has analysis of the task ahead for federal reserve chairman ben bernanke and bumps in theo@5
nasdaq picked up just under 7. ben bernanke said today unemployment will remain high as the economy tries to stabilize. >> we expect to see positive job creation either this year or early next year, but it's going to take a while, given the pace of growth for the unemployment rate to come back down to levels that we would be more comfortable with. bret: senior political analyst brit hume has thoughts about bernanke and the big job ahead. >> hello, bret. ben bernanke had much to do before congress today. he needed to provide some encouragement that an economic recovery is underway or on the way, and he he did say that some growth should occur later this year, though not enough to do much about the unemployment rate. at the same time, he insisted that once a recovery takes hold, a massive sum that the fed has been pumping into the economy, cash it has created, can be taken quickly to avoid
inflation f anyone can pull off such a feat, it is bernanke. he pumped up the money supply when the dimensions of the banking is up problem came and this guy is decisive and fast. remember, it is the fed's traditional independence from the rest of the government and especially from congress that enables it to be decisive and fast. now, though, there is a new round of calls for greater oversight of the fed in the form of greater access to its books by congress. it sounds reasonable enough but it is unmistakably an effort to give politicians greater say in interest rate policy. some members of congress now blame the fed for keeping rates too low for too long and feeding the real estate bubble. there weren't many lawmakers calling for higher interest rates at the time, and there won't be many cheering bernanke on when he has to raise them again to head off inflation. bret. bret: what are your thoughts of bernanke's future in that job? >> well, it's widely thought that larry summers who is the top economic advisor in the
white house wants the job badly, but i think generally speaking, bernanke has gotten good reviews up until now. it might be hard for him to be replaced, and of course, if the economy begins to recover, it will be even harder to replace him. bret: brit, thanks. >> you bet. bret: california governor arnold schwarzneggar has reached a deal to close the state's $26 billion budget gap. the legislature will slash $15 billion in spending with the rest of the money coming from one-time fixes and accounting maneuvers. the rank and file will vote thursday. an independent investigator says there is evidence on outgoing alaska governor sarah palin violated ethics laws by using her position for personal gain. the associated press is reporting the investigator's report indicates palin improperly accepted private donations to pay her legal debts. the former republican vice presidential nominee says she owes more than $500,000, largely from a string of
ethics complaints again against her. the vast majority of those complaints have been dismissed. while president obama has the pedal to the metal, they are litting speed bumps on the closing of guantanomo bay. catherine herridge explains. >> six months after president obama signed an order announcing the closure of guantanomo bay, the administration's review team is missing its first deadline. it will need more time, another six months, to work on detention policy, and another two months to work on interrogation policy. this comes as no surprise to members of the previous administration. >> everyone should take a deep breath and say, ok, it's going to take more time. good. let it take more time. >> since the president's announcement just 5% of the detainees, including binyad mohammed, have been transferred out of guantanomo. also out of this group, the four uighurs who may now open
a restaurant in bermuda. the men have only praise for the president. >> we would like to congratulate president obama for his steps taken toward guantanomo. >> not far from where the detainees hang their laundry at the camp, the executive order is posted. the 229 detainees who remain present complex legal questions. some cannot be tried, but they remain a threat and cannot be freed. halfway through the review process, the chief prosecutor at guantanomo claims they they are making excellent progress and that more than a quarter of the detainees will get inside a courtroom. >> we believe there are 66 viable cases. >> john in murphy is putting together the cases for military cases or criminal prosecution. >> every day we track down new evidence that include documents to translate, documents to sign, cables to analyze. there is no shortage of work. >> there is a distinction between formulating policy such as long-term detention, which will be unpopular with
the president's supporters on the left, and the physical closure of the military prison. >> i'm confident that by january 22, guantanomo bay will be closed. we are in the process of making these individualized determinations about the 230 or so prisoners who remain detainees who remain at guantanomo. >> asked to explain what closed means -- >> i think closure means closure. we're not interested in changing the name and changing the ownership. >> at least one senior republican says he's concerned that this apparent rush to close the prison will mean that some states will be ultimately forced to accept detainees. at guantanomo bay, cube bark catherine herridge, fox newses. we will hear more from president obama later and secretary of state clinton talks about ann
>> now checking out headlines around the world, in afghanistan, taliban militants carried out attacks on three buildings in a u.s. base. american forces killed two of the militants and a third was captured. witnesses say hundreds of people took to the streets again in iran's capital city to protest last month's presidential election. this video is believed to be out of tehran today. we cannot confirm this independently. proat the-- protestors shouted r president ahmadinejad to resign and were detained by riot police. president clin tonight and hillary are in thailand looking to get north korea to abandon nuclear programs as worries emerge over a
possible alliance involving the communist nation. james ozen has the story from bang bangkok. >> secretary of state clinton acknowledged, quote, growing concerns about reports of military collaboration between two countries the u.s. watches most carefully -- burma and north korea. >> it would be destablizing for the region. it would pose a direct threat to burma's neighbors and it is something as a treaty ally of thailand that we are taking very seriously. >> clinton's aides said tuesday the regime of kim jung il may be making significant shipments of illegal hardware to burma, the oppressive dictatorship on which the u.s. and north korea has imposed broad sanctions. officials acknowledge the two countries may also be trading nuclear secrets, fears driven by the suspicious movement last month of this cargo ship, which the u.s. military tracked until the vessel
abandoning its suspected destination of burma returned home. the obama administration is studying recently published photographs purporting to show an elaborate set of underground tunnels the north koreans built for burma along the border with thailand. >> we are engaged with partners such as thailand and others in assessing and determining not only what is going on inside burma but also what we can do effectively to change the direction and behavior of the burmese leadership. >> on wednesday, secretary clinton will make her debut among her counter counterparts in the increasingly influential association of south asian nations. the united states feels they felt neglected by president bush, so clinton's aides said she will announce during her time here the creation of a new post, ambassador. traveling in thailand with the secretary of state, james rosen, fox news.
you'd think it would be something out of your control. not necessarily. after menopause, when a woman has a fracture, the underlying cause could be osteoporosis. and that's a fracture that might have been prevented. if you have post-menopausal osteoporosis, you could be at high risk for fracture. which is why i hope you'll call now 1-800-316-4955 for this free information kit. in it, you'll see the difference between the inside of a strong bone and the inside of an osteoporotic bone, weakened and prone to fracture. you'll find ways to help reverse bone loss and to help prevent fractures. learn how to help maintain strong bones. and read about an effective treatment option. there's even a guide to use when you talk to your doctor.
osteoporosis is that important. another surgeon agrees with me. the surgeon general. ...half of all women 50 or older will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture in their lifetime. call 1-800-316-4955. if you could help prevent a fracture, wouldn't you? for your free kit, call now. bret: now some fresh pickings from the political grapevine. president obama said he would create jobs, and he definitely has at the white house, especially for lawyers. "the washington times" reports the obama white house counsel's office is employing
41 attorneys compared to 26 on staff at end of president bush's second term. that's a 57% jump. the bush administration increased its heel force from 1r 6 lawyer -- its legal force from 16 lawyers in 2005 after democrats began investigating the executive branch, but the obama administration is not dealing with the same scrutiny because democrats control both houses of congress. the report says the increase is because of the president's decision to move the vetting process under the control of the white house counsel greg craig following disclosures that forced some of obama's nominees for top positions to withdraw. a former defense department employee with ties to democratic congressman john murtha pleaded guilty monday to making a false statement on a federal disclosure form. marco harrod is the second to plead guilty in the
investigation looking to defense contract negotiations. last week, a defense contractor contractor pled guilty and murtha had directed $4 million to that man's company. murtha's younger brother was listed as a consulting lobbyist for the firm between 2004 and 2006. neither congressman murtha nor his brother are named in court documents pertaining to the two cases but the government watchdog group citizens for responsibility and ethics in washington lists murtha as one of the 20 most corrupt members of congress. and the federal government is inph out out incandescent lightbulbs in favor of a more energy efficient model known as the compact fluorescent bulb or c.f.l. but "the washington times" reports those bulbs are posing a risk to the environment. they are powered by mercury and improper disposal can lead to pollution and the vibration of toxic material into
groundwater. some states, including california, have banned c.f.l.'s from regular trash. officials there estimate that less than 10% are disposed of properly. the 2007 energy bill requires incandescent lightbulbs be discontinued to increase efficiency by 2020. there is no mandate for recycling or safe disposal in the bill leaving that up to state and local governments. now our top story at the bottom of the hour. the president makes another pitch for healthcare reform. wendell goler report mrs. obama concentrated today on reassurance. >> at his ninth healthcare event in as many days, president obama focused on selling reform to people who are already insured. >> you won't lose your healthcare, if you change jobs, lose your job or start a business. you won't lose your insurance if you get sick.
>> mr. obama aimed to counter growing concern that the healthcare reforms he eventually approved might have a negative impact on existing plans. he said each of five bills being considered on capitol hill would let people keep their health insurance plan. each would cut costs and provide catastrophic care. >> each of these bills will provide incentives so that patients get the best care, not just the most expensive care. >> in an earlier interview on nbc's "today show," the president suggested that none of the bills has his seal of approval yet. >> right now they're not where they need to be. >> some of the blue dog democrats are asking what's the your? >> i have a lot of folks in my district who are uninsured. i think what we need to do is take our time on this. if it means going into the fall, it means going into the fall. >> a number of blue dogs told the president their major concern is cost. as is usual for a transition white house, mr. obama's first midterm economic report has been delayed. though the robert wood johnson
foundation says americans are more confident about their ability to obtain and afford healthcare, polls suggest the president's handling of healthcare reform has been going down. he would like to avoid giving republicans the chance to push it down further. the white house admits some democrats are trying just as hard to put on the brakes. >> his response is different to democrats than it is to republicans about the fact that we can't afford to delay this, that we can't afford to simply wait months and months or another year and add that to the other 40 years we have waited for comprehensive reform that we will actually cut costs. the blue dogs say they would like the healthcare reform proposal to add tract more bipartisan reform and so would jim clyburn of south carolina who says he would be willing to put off a vote for a week or so if he thought he could get consensus. the president's aides point out one of the two senate plans contain 160 republican amendments but passing it in the house is considered a long shot. >> wendell goler, live on the
north lawn. well, the move to change u.s. healthcare has focused attention on the systems used in other countries. tonight correspondent greg palkot tells us about government-run care in great britain. is it a viable mod? we report. you decide. >> as the obama administration braces to reform a u.s. health system it says is in critical condition, here is an example of union sersal healthcare, the u.k.'s national health service or n.h.s. and funded by taxpayers. it provides free healthcare for visitly all ail manies for all brits, some 60 million people, and does it at a lower cost than the u.s. with, some claim, superior results. >> it doesn't matter whether you're rich or poor. you get run over by a bus or have a heart attack. you don't reach four visa card. you get treated. you get fixed up. >> but there are limits. >> if you have cancer in the u.k. today, you are going to die quicker than any other country. >> the same health service is ammo for obama critics.
patient anecdotes point out brittish inefficiencies air in ads. survival rates for some cancers, for example, are lower in the u.k. than in the u.s. and elsewhere. the government-run n.h.s. is charged as a monopoly provider, limiting options, stiffling new treatment and dictating service by where one lives. >> can't choose a doctor, can't choose a specialist in many cases or can't chas where you go to. >> another complaint, medical care is rationed. for example, life-extending drugs might not be approved if the patient is already dying. u.s. healthcare reformers are looking at making tough choices and n.h.s. critics say beware. >> the rationing tells me and the cancer specialist which drugs i can use and which ones i can't use. >> critics say beware of uncontrolled growth. the n.h.f. has 1 million doctors and nurses making it the biggest employer in the u.k. and the fourth biggest in the world. while it is funded through 2011 with costs rising, after
that, it will take further cuts or higher taxes to keep it going. most brits, however, don't want to pull the plug on their system. they just want its conditions to improve. >> i usually don't have to wait too long to see a doctor. >> the point is that it is always there. >> still, the obama administration looks at moving toward socialized medicine, the folks here might be moving in the other direction. there is talk this week about charging $30 for a g.p. visit in the u.k., a sign of how difficult it might be to some to solve the healthcare problems. greg palkot,ing fox news. >> the president met withholdout democrats about [ female announcer ] 1 out of 2 women over 50
if you exercise, are you sure that's enough? call 1-800-316-4954 to find out more in this free information kit. in it, you'll see the difference between the inside of a strong bone and the inside of an osteoporotic bone weakened and prone to fracture. you'll find ways to help reverse bone loss, and ways to help prevent fractures. call 1-800-316-4954 and learn how to help maintain strong bones and read about a treatment option for post-menopausal osteoporosis. there's even a discussion guide to use when you talk to your doctor. are you calling now? 1-800-316-4954. we're ready for your call. 1-800-316-4954. >> we are closer than ever before to the reform that the
american people need, and we're going to get the job done. >> mr. president, it's time to scrap this bill. let's start over in a bipartisan way. there are members on the democrat side that have both arms broken during the cap and trade fight on the floor. now there are no more arms to break. that's why they're having problems. bret: there you see the president in a rose garden ceremony, another event, the ninth event in as many days pushing healthcare reform. you would think there it was between the president and republicans that's holding this up, but actually, it's blue dog democrats, conservative democrats. take a listen. >> i think we need to slow things down. i think this is a very important issue that we need to tackle. i've got a lot of folks in my dissticts that are uninsured, so i think what we need to do is take our time on this. if it means going into the fall, it means going into the fall. >> before we consider any kind of new revenue, they want us to squeeze every ounce of savings that we can out of the
current system. that's what we're demanding. bret: the house energy and commerce committee scrapped a markup session today and has scrapped it tomorrow. where are we with healthcare reform? is the p president's plan in trouble? let's bring in our panel. steve hayes, senior writer for the weekly standard, mara liasson of national public radio and charles krauthammer. mar a, let's start with you. >> well, we're down to the wire. we're running out of time. the house has two more weeks and the senate has three more weeks. they have a lot of work to do if they want to meet the p president's original deadline, which is that ooh p each house should have a bill done by the august deadline. he doesn't say august anymore. now he we want it by the end of the year, the whole thing. originally he said october. the problem somebody this isn't working inside the president's own party. the speaker of the house and the president have been trying to make amends or at least make some offerings to these
conservative democrats and the house says the blue dogs and the senate, people like ben nelson and mary landrieu, and what he said is that he wants this imac commission, something that is very important to blue dogs, an independent commission that would take away from congress the power to set medicare reimbursement rates. it became a form of pork and it would be an independent panel and they would do that. that doesn't solve the problem of paying for the plan and making it deficit neutral, but it would bring costs down. now, the problem on the paying for it side is that the house presented a way to pay for it, raise taxes on people making over $250,000. a lot of democrats freaked over that and now speaker pelosi is just raise taxes on people who make $1 million, millionnaires, that sounds better, ok, fine but where do you get the rest of the money? they're really struggling on this. >> nancy pelosi was naked
about how she put it. she said i can sell this better. this sounds better. people down the street don't know people who make a million but they might know people who make $280,000. it was incredibly political. it goes back to the point about the president. president obama said the other day, this is not about politics, but it really is all about politics, and as you pointed out in the introduction, his problem is with his own party, and yet the white house has spent the last two days attacking republicans and attacking republican strategists. i'm bewildered by the white house strategy on this point. it makes zero sense to attack republicans when democrats are the ones who he is having these problems with. bret: at the same time, the democratic national committee is running ads against moderate democrats in their states. charles. >> look, it is about politics but it's mostly, despite what obama also said yesterday, it's about him. it is entirely about him. it's not about cost controls, because all of the plans are going to raise the costs.
it's not about improving quality. if anything, these machinations will decrease the quality of american healthcare t surely isn't about efficiency. the inefficiency dha has accrued in the healthcare system over the decades and now they want to introduce all kinds more inefficiencies. it is about obama. this is his signature achievement he has promised. if he doesn't have a bill, any bill, at the end of the year, his presidency is going to be seriously damaged. bret: sounds like you are saying it is a waterloo. >> therefore, it won't be a waterloo. i'm sure that at the interview, he will have a bill and it will have the words healthcare reform on it, and it will be watered down, all of the ballasts that the blue dogs were protesting against including, i'm sure, the public plan, is going to be thrown overboard and it will be a very weak version of what
we have now, probably even harmless, which will be a great american achievement, but he will have something. he won't have it in august. he will have to have it in the end of the year. democrats understand his presidency is over if he gets nothing. bret: if that's the case, mar a, and it's -- if that's the case, mara, and it is much watered down, how tough is that to handle for a president that has a democratic house and senate, and started out with approval ratings in the high 60's? >> on this one, the left is slated to have their hearts broken, and the president will tell them all the things they got instead of single-payer or a medicare-style public options. they got universal coverage rolled out over time. they got everybody to keep their health plans. they won't be denied because of pre-existing conditions. there will be lots of things to mollify the left wing of the democratic party if he gets this. bret: there is a lot of road to go. >> that is the least of his problems right now. he is negotiating.
one thing is that the president is more involved. he has the blue dogs up. he said to the senate he is open to different formulations of the public option, including ones that are not so robust. i think in the end he will get something. the danger is if they don't get it by august, they have a month for the opponents of healthcare to go out there and shoot at what they think is going to be in the bill. they need something specific. bret: they are buying millions in ads. jim clyburn told our producer on capitol hill, if we can do it next week without consensus or wait a week and doo it with consensus, i would rather wait a week. they seemed resigned that it won't happen up until the august recess. >> then wait another week. >> this is part of their problem. this is not an original point. we have been talking about this on this panel for weeks. the problem with his plan, the healthcare plan like the stimulus, is that if he doesn't rush it through, the more people see it, the less they like t you now have a new
politico poll that was out today about the public and the public plan, the views on the public plan. 73% of americans think it won't lower costs. i mean, that is one of the fundamental tenets of his plan, and people think he is not going to deliver. that's a huge problem. bret: we will hear more from the president on healthcare and other issues during his primetime news conference wednesday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern time. up next, closing guantanomo up next, closing guantanomo bay is turning out to be a
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guantanomo without knowing where the detainees may be sent. the most recent delay is more reason for the administration to show flexibility and reconsider its artificial deadline for closing guantanomo. >> i'm confident that we will be able to close the facility on the deadline that the president has given us. bret, well, the deadline is january 22 of next year. as you heard the senate minority leader speak about it, he wasn't talking about the billboard behind him. he was speaking about the closing of gitmo, that the administration's review team is missing its first deadline saying it nides more time, another six months to work on the policy, and another two months to work on interrogation policy. where do we stand on gitmo? we're back with the panel. steve. >> i think if you're the white house, you're in trouble, again. this w w wis was an issue that y thought was going to be simple. he thought he could campaign on a policy to close guantanomo bay and order it closed two days after he was
sworn in and it would happen within a year. well, it turns out that as the bush administration struggled with for 7 years, this is a very difficult problem. the people in guantanomo bay are brad people, almost without -- are bad people, almost without exception. you have in some cases, 70% of the detainees who have been through some type of terrorist training. there all sorts of flags that people have looked at these detainees one by one have identified as being problematic. these are not the kind of people you want to he set free, so the problem for the obama administration is now what? you have got six months. you have said you will delay for six months. well, we're supposed to be closed in six months. how are they going to come up with a plan that does that without having made it through the individual detainee review yet? bret: today robert gibbs said closure means closure, meaning we won't turn it over to something else and have a different name. >> well, no, but the detainees might be indefinitely detained somewhere else. they might not be detained in
cuba. one of the things the president has said is they are looking at indefinite detention. they are getting closer to the bush policy but will call it something different. they said there was an important distinction that if the president does it, he won't do it by executive order the way president bush did, he will consult with congress. we're coming to a brand new consensus on guantanomo that looks a lot like the old consensus. bret: is this his waterloo? >> no. this is his -- this is where he hands his sword over to the bush administration and concedes that he was wrong. of course, he never will, but, in fact, his deeds, as mara indicated will be a concession. in the end, he will end up in the same place as the bush administration under a different name. this comes under the heading of the humbling of a singularly arrogant administration and president, having attacked bush on interrogation and on guantanomo for over a year and a half. as president he goes around and grandly announces he will
close guantanomo and stop all of the big torture. now his own commissions are stuck on this, and they're stuck because in the end, obama is going to have to commit what in the eyes of the left, his constituency is the ultimate crime -- indefinite detention. khalid sheik mohammed is going to die in american cussed to i did -- custody, whether in guantanomo or on american soil, it doesn't matter. that's going to be under the obama administration and its successor. that was the main issue on which democrats attacked the republicans and now it is going to be a huge concession. as mara indicated, the beauty of this is that we will end up with a national consensus. democrats are going to agree tacitly by action and not in word that the bush administration has it right, and they will end up with a version of the bush policy. bret: politically does it pay off for republicans? >> the politics of this are fascinating. people didn't love guantanomo bay, but they like releasing
terrorists a lot less. you know who had the politics right from the beginning was mitch mcconnell. i interviewed him two days before barack obama was inaugurated and he said to me, he can't close gitmo, and people understand you can't close gitmo. it turns out he was right on the policy and also on the politics of this. bret: mara, last word. how does it end? >> i think guantanomo has to close, but some other facility will be set up to keep them indefinitely detained. >> it won't close in january, are that's for sure. >> i'm with charles on that. bret: that's it for the panel. stay tuned for a new idea to solve a big potential problem. . ñ
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please, don't ignore it. because osteoporosis means that over time, your bones gradually become weaker and can break more easily. see the weakness here? there is something you can do about it. call 1-800-316-4952 now for your free information kit. you'll see the difference between strong bone and osteoporotic bone, weakened and prone to fracture. you'll find ways to help reverse bone loss and help prevent fractures. you'll learn how to help maintain strong bones, a way to treat post-menopausal osteoporosis and things to discuss with your doctor. so call 1-800-316-4952 now. it's too important to ignore. osteoporosis. you can't see it, you may not feel it. but you can do something. call now. finally bret: tonight, there has
been a lot of focus on what lawmakers are doings here in washington on health care reform and climate change. apparently, microsoft co-founder bill gates is also working on a big new project. >> bill gates is working on a plan to fight and destroy hurricanes. gates and some scientists just filed applications to patent an idea they have to reduce the intensity of hurricanes. you should not hurt people when i school. monday, you are pulling up their pants, the next day they are playing with hurricanes. they're going to drop the windows of the staff -- windows vista operating system in the hurricane. hurricane.