tv The Ed Show MSNBC January 13, 2012 12:00am-1:00am PST
front-runner, can't get better than this, but maybe just maybe it will. hang on to your hat, and if you're a republican, hang on period. and that's hardball for now. thanks for being with us "the ed show" with ed schultz starts right now. good evening, americans, and welcome to the ed show from new york. mitt romney is facing more heat regarding his record at bain capital, and this time it's coming from his own party, romney. is he hiding from the truth? america deserves answers. >> i think any time a job is lost is a tragedy. for the family, for the individual that loses a job, it's just devastating. >> the bigger tragedy for romney is when your investors don't get paid. john mccain is coming to romney's defense. his old running mate is twisting the knife. >> governor romney has claimed too have created 100,000 jobs at bain. people are wanting to know, is there proof?
>> tonight my commentary on the mother at failings of middle class men. don't look now, but we have a tight race in south carolina. and it's getting uglier by the minute. >> phony cronyism is not free enterprise and raising questions about that is not wrong. >> crystal ball, e.j. dion and ari melber of the nation magazine on the chaos in carolina. jim demint goes rogue with his white house pick and lands in "psycho talk." and so far, mitt romney has stayed under the radar on the issue of race. tonight that's all over. mitt romney and his mormon faith are being called on the carpet. good to have you with us tonight, folks, thanks for watching. ultraconservatives are not buying mitt romney's claim of being a job creator. last night, sarah palin defended attacks on romney.
>> governor rockiesny has claimed to have created 100,000 jobs at bain. and people are wanting to know, is there proof of that claim, and was it u.s. jobs created for united states citizens. >> it's that old reporter coming out in sarah palin, so much for sports. newt gingrich isn't stepping on the brakes either. watch this testy exchange he had with the kids on fox and friends this morning. >> there are a series of cases that don't look right, i'm saying for a guy to run for president, use his record as the basis for running, and then tell us we're not allowed to even ask about his record? to ask about the record of a presidential candidate is somehow inappropriate? >> let me follow that up -- >> please don't look, please don't ask for details, i can't think of any other place in american life where -- >> but, sir -- >> where the news media would back off and say, oh, my gosh, we can't look at this.
>> these hard right wingers don't sound much different than the democratic congressman i had on my radio show today. listen to south carolina congressman talk about mitt romney's finances. >> you think romney's hiding something? >> i really think so. i have no doubt in my mind that he has some reason for not wanting us to see his tax returns. >> are you suggesting there may be a scenario where he's not paying any tax? >> there may well be. and there's only one way for us to know and that's for him to make his tax records available for the public to see. >> you know, when it's all about finance it all comes together. when you got james clyburn, sarah palin and newt gingrich on the same page, the republicans get really nervous. the latest poll out of south carolina shows the attacks may be working. romney is ahead of gingrich by only two points. in 2008, mccain sounded a lot like gingrich and palin when it
came to romney and bain capital. he was confronted about it on fox today. >> you made an issue of bain as well, and pointed out he presided over this company which laid off thousands of workers and some of your surrogates went a little further than you did? >> yes, that's why you have surrogates to go further than you. >> well, it just wasn't surrogates, mr. mccain. that is what john mccain told "the new york times" about mitt romney back in 2008. as head of his investment company, he presided over the acquisition of companies that laid off thousands of workers. pretty good surrogate work there, senator. mccain is singing a different tune about bain capital today. >> to go after him on really what is the essence of what we republicans believe in about economy, i think is a serious mistake. and, frankly, i think it's the last resort of a very desperate
campaign. >> but that's not what you said in 2008. mccain says romney's tenure at bain capital is the essence of what the republican party is all about? here's the essence, john mccain is defending. robbing 45rd working americans of their pensions and putting the excess dealt on the back of the united states taxpayer. in 1993 bain capital became the majority shareholder of a kansas city steel mill, according to reuters, the mill was pad locked and some 750 people lost their jobs. workers were denied the severance pay and health care insurance they had been promised. and their pension benefits were cut by as much as $400 a month. how's that for treating the workers good. the remaining benefits were paid by the pension benefit guarantee corporation, a pension protection agency in the united states government, because bain left the government on the hook for the pension benefits. the cost to the taxpayers was a
$44 million bailout. mitt romney's candidacy may be the best thing that could have happened to the american worker because it's a wakeup call for everybody. we know income inequality has gotten worse in the last three decades, now american people are learning about the vultures who help make it worse. i want to be clear here, this is part of the story that needs to be put out there, just so we're all on the same page as americans. there seems to be some misconception floating around the story. we're talking about corporate raiders that don't look for companies that are dying or on the verge of bankruptcy or cash strapped in anyway. they go after companies that are successful, companies that have cash or other liquid assets, they strip it out and declare bankruptcy. it's called, i guess you could say, chop shop vulture capitalism. mitt was pretty good at it. mitt romney wasn't in the business of creating jobs and
being such a good citizen that, oh, look i've created 100,000 jobs. no, he worked in the financial sector. and his job was to make money at any cost, and not worry about who he left behind. get your cell phones out, i want to know what you think. tonight's question, does mitt romney need to come clean about his record at bain capital? text a for yes, b for no to 622639 and can you go to our blog at ed.msnbc.com. we'll bring you the results later on in the show. joined tonight by david k. johnson author of "free lunch." good to have you with us tonight. the scenario that i painted. is it very -- is it accurate? i mean, is this what companies do? is this what these financiers do? they go around looking for company that is have it pretty good, have a bank account, have assets, go in there and do the dirty deed? what do you think? >> the record on romney is
somewhat mixed. there are companies that they essentially bought, sucked all the cash out of them, and then left behind. and i think the pension guarantee issue is one that will cause him a lot of problems, and a lot of explaining is necessary about why the government had to step in in this area. but he also was involved in creating some companies. and in those cases, you have to look at the fact that staples created a lot of jobs, a lot of people buy things at staples. it also destroyed a lot of the mom-and-pop stationery stores. if it makes the economy more efficient, that may be good for the country, it's part of this remaking we're doing to the economy that helps explain inequality. we've been eliminating all sorts of other positions and pushing money up to the top, and romney was very successful at that. he's a very hardworking smart guy. >> did bain profit from reducing pensions? >> there's no question, that they were able in the particular
case that was mentioned involving the steel mill to take money out of this company, that didn't have a properly funded pension and fawn it off on the pension guarantee program is clearly an important part of this story. there are other parts of it that have not come out yet with other companies, where they made changes to the benefit programs of workers. if you have a business and you want to sell it, one of the first things you do, if you're one of the companies that comes in and buys firms to sell them. strip down the staff, stop reinvesting in the business, cut spending on pensions, health care and other things, so the company appears to be on the spreadsheet more valuable than it is in the real world. >> what we have here, is the republican party has broken out in a conversation they just don't want to have in front of the public. they want to have it behind closed doors. this is really who we are. john mccain let the cat out of the bag, he said, this is the essence of the republican party. here's more of what mccain said today. >> now, you came out this
morning and suggested there's an alternative to the way bain does business, and it's called communism. >> yes. >> where everybody gets a fair share. >> keep everybody in business, keep every industry no matter how bad it is, and that's what communism is. unfortunately it doesn't work. >> what do we have here? do we have john mccain calling newt gingrich a communist? take -- >> well, what we have, i think is something absolutely fascinating. we're seeing the divisions in the republican party between real business and financial business. between wall street and main street, the tension has always been there. when newt led the revolution in 1994 and briefly was the speaker of the house, what did you see? you saw main street going up against wall street. and that's what this is about. this is the split within the republican party between the financier class and the business class. >> well, another thing, you have newt gingrich out there saying mitt romney ought to hold a press conference and open himself up to all kinds of questions. it could be very embarrassing if
he said he reduced people's pensions and payroll after faking over a solvent company. >> gingrich has raised the real important questions for the republicans. if they don't vet romney, can you imagine what obama will do with his research in the main election if they run romney? >> very good political point. what about releasing tax returns? why do you think governor romney is so hesitant? in fact he may not do it at all? >> romney doesn't want to release them, because what they're going to show, he paid very small amounts of taxes. he made his wealth by not having been taxed. absolutely legal. but it's the system that allows this. i don't see how romney can get to the white house without we leasing returns. but if he does, they're going to cause enormous problems. people who drive buses and teach school are going to discover his
tax rate many years was lower their theirs and he was making more money in a single year than they will make in ten lifetimes. >> david cay johnston, thank you very much. remember to answer tonight's question at the bottom of the screen. we want to know what you think. south carolina is only nine days away, and the stakes could not be hire. our political panel joins me tonight, mitt romney's religion has a troubled history on race. and it may be time for romney to address this head on. openry hendricks will join me on that subject stay with us. when i inspect homes, i can't be in an allergy fog. so i get claritin clear for strong, non-drowsy relief of all my allergies like dust mold pets and pollen. looks good. thanks. i live claritin clear.
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>> are you attacking bain or just asking questions? >> i'm just asking a question. i'm shocked at how defensive they are. >> do you think mitt romney could have done anything to save those jobs at bain? >> well, you don't know, do you. >> sheldon aid elson is distancing himself from gingrich's king of bain adds, adds adelson helped fund. rick perry is showing no signs of letting up. perry's attacks have turned off one of perry's key financial backers. investment fund donor barry winn told the associated press, he's switching his support from perry to romney. winn says perry went too far, i've been fighting for this cause most of my life. it's like finger nails on a chalkboard, it's just kind of irritated you to hear those kind of attacks. perry, who needs all the cash and support that he can get
brushed it off, telling the state newspaper "if somebody wants to cut and run, that's their call." let's turn to tyler jones, democratic strategist and co-founder of south carolina's forward progressive website. great to have you with us. is it really going to be a horse race in south carolina? and the only way it's going to be a horse race is if mitt romney continues to have to fence off these attacks from newt gingrich. is the bain conversation hurting mitt romney? >> well, first thanks for having me, ed. short answer, we don't know yet, but probably. you know, newt gingrich has committed $3.4 million to south carolina in the form of tv ads, they're probably all going to go after romney. we don't know if the bain issue is going to hurt mitt in south carolina and how much. but we think it probably will. nobody spent $3.4 million in the course of nine days. i think in south carolina
political history. and look, mitt romney has a history, and it deserves to be exposed. and he's going to have to face some serious questions about his past that he's never had to. you know, he came into south carolina two decades ago, and he decimated jobs. 150 families lost their jobs here in the upstate of south carolina. i mean, look, this is what they do. people like mitt romney, wall street guys from the north, they come down here and they take the jobs and send them overseas, and they ruin lives and livelihoods, and isn't it ironic that he's asking for south carolina voters to give him a job when he was the one that took their job two decades ago? >> what do you hear on the street about newt gingrich? he claimed this was his territory, it's going to be a different scenario. that's what he was inferring. what do you think? >> i think he has a chance. i think he and santorum have a chance to knock off romney in the state.
it's going to take money. one thing that newt has going for him, he has a lot of money. like i said, he's spending $3.4 million. we don't know what's going to happen with that. it could be too overwhelming for voters in south carolina. he's got some pretty good issues to bring to light. you know, mitt romney's flip-flopped on some key issues to social conservatives in south carolina like abortion, disobey rights. he's going to have to go into these small towns and small communities in south carolina, look people in the eye and explain to them why he's flip-flopped. why he came into south carolina two decades ago, and took their jobs away. and -- >> so you think that -- >> $3.4 million can do a lot of things. >> you think that south carolina story is going to haunt him, even two decades later? >> oh, absolutely. >> okay. >> it wasn't that long ago, 20 years ago, the upstate was full of textile mills and mitt romney and people like mitt romney came
in here and decimated the place. let's talk to crystal ball, e.j. dion with us tonight senior fellow at the brookings institution, and also ari melber, correspondent for the nation magazine. great to have you all with us tonight. >> thanks, ed. >> perry and gingrich have been getting heat for their attacks on romney, the record at bain. e.j., what do you make of it. is this newt gingrich's best and only shot to get back into this race? >> well, i don't know. i think maybe he'll get an ambassadorship from the obama administration when this is all over. >> he's doing them a favor, isn't he? >> he is. what's fascinating about these attacks, they work on two levels. romney says his main calling card is i am a businessman, i understand business, he can point to those companies he helped start, like staples and sports authority, therefore make me president.
what perry and gingrich are saying, let's look at the whole picture. it wasn't all job creation. what do private equity firms do? sometimes they help start new enterprises, sometimes they just suck the cash out of businesses and those businesses die. that leads to the larger argument. mitt romney likes to say, it's free enterprise on trial. actually, it's about different kinds of capitalism. there are many kinds of capitalism. warren buffett was asked about private equity by "time" magazine this week, he said he wasn't crazy about it, because they took too much money out of companies and saddled them with debt. let's debate, what kind of capitalism do we want? >> this is a conversation that's evolved that's almost embarrassing to the republicans, isn't it? >> yeah. it absolutely is. i mean, getting called heartless by the republicans is kind of like having donald trump tell you you have too big of an ego. it's a bad thing.
and it exposes the divisions within the party. one thing i want to point unite, we just came from the new hampshire primary, where the median income per capita is the seventh seventh highest in the country. south carolina is near the bottom, it's 42nd in the country. this is a place where romney is going to struggle and where these attacks, these populous attacks on how he enriched himself through bain are going to have resonance there. >> this has got to help the obama camp, they have to be behind closed doors high fiving each other, what do you think? >> i think so. this is a preview of some of the debates we're going to see. it's fascinating this has come up within the republican party and newt gingrich has pushed it, as well as rick perry. this is fundamentally something that mitt romney brought up.
he made a claim -- he said they created at least 100,000 net jobs. if you go to bain, according to politico, they will not confirm yes or no whether there were any gains in net jobs. so that's a gap between 100,000 claim by mitt romney and bain, a company that has certain responsibilities even though it's not regulated like some companies, it has responsibilities, and so far they won't say where they've created one job. mitt romney brought this up and it's not going away. >> and you know what, ed. i was going to add to that, what's really ironic about that, he made this same mistake when he ran against ted kennedy in 1994. he said he created 10 now, jobs, he put an actual number to it, and that opened him up to all sorts of criticisms. from the ted kennedy campaign that were damaging to the campaign. >> what's so surprising is that the romney aids were saying today that they were somewhat unprepared for these attacks that were coming in the realm of bain. >> ed, just briefly, isn't it
funny that it was bainer who was always saying to obama where are the jobs. and mitt romney has managed to make a claim that has a lot of people, including journalists, figuring out where are the jobs? he doesn't have evidence or documents to substantiate it. >> krystal ball, e.j.dionne thank you. politico has breaking news on what cobert is going to say tonight. jim demint says he wants the next president of the united states to be like wisconsin governor scott walker. really? statements like that give you a one way ticket you can't return.
welcome back to the ed show, new hampshire was a must win for jon huntsman, the guy who finished third. nevertheless he said a bronze medal gave him a ticket to ride to south carolina. it ain't looking too good for the former governor of utah. needless to say, he's keeping expectations very low. very, very low. as he told nbc news. how bad is it for huntsman? the latest polling from the public policy polling shows that the comedian steven colbert getting more support from south carolina voters than huntsman.
>> a major pollster has me at 5% ahead of the third place finisher in new hampshire. i got to ask, what do you think, nation, should i run for president in south carolina? >> yeah! >> ladies and gentlemen, i hear what i'm asking to you say, but that's a really big decision. first, i need to pray on it. okay, god's good with it. >> and just minutes ago, colbert announced he is exploring a run for president. politico reporter tweeted, colbert will be exploring a run for the united states of america of south carolina. jon stewart will run his super pac. you mean stewart's going to have a real job? let's bring back krystal ball, e.j. dionne and melber.
what's going to happen now? >> for the last six months, the republican race has been pretty funny in moments without colbert. i can only imagine what will happen now. maybe huntsman will promise to put him on the ticket. they'll still be running behind gingrich and santorum. >> rick perry does not seem to be backing off. there was even some talk about an alliance between romney and perry at one time, because they're both governors from the republican governor's association, he's just as or more aggressive than newt gingrich, and he just won't give up. >> you know, i've been trying to figure perry out. it is worth remembering that he was once a democrat. and it sounds like he's got old -- great old texas populous
tapes from back in the 70s and 80s. i was thinking that molly ivans, that great populous columnist from texas must be smiling up there in the people's paradise. but i think that perry figures he's got to bring romney down. i have the only -- i think romney's going to win south carolina. it's very hard to see him losing. if he does lose, i think what you might see is a kind of pitch movement where gingrich and perry both go after romney, but if you can gather a little bit of money together, rick santorum can then be the guy that comes out ahead. a lot of times in these fights, the guy that light ever let's the other guys fight sneaks past everybody. >> that's the whole thing. all these other contenders seem to have sugar daddies, so to speak. is huntsman finished? is there a way forward for him? >> no, i think huntsman was someone that was very appealing to a media and aspirational idea of where the republican party might go.
this is a good season in politics. this is the time where us commentators matter less, and the voters matter more, if we listen to what the republican electorate has said in the first two states, they are more comfortable with mitt romney than what we were led to believe. and we are very excited about this guy named ron paul who currently has the second most votes but nobody wants to deal with, in the republican establishment and in the referees in the media, fox news, i'll say, in closing, cutaway from ron paul's speech on the victory night in iowa caucus, because they didn't want to deal with the fact that he was doing so well. >> everybody says he just has no chance. krystal ball, he has his following, and he's raised some $13 million as of late over the last quarter. i mean, he's got the money to continue on. and set up pretty good in these caucus states, what about it? >> well, they don't want to have to admit there's a significant portion of their party that believes in civil liberties and
limited intervention abroad. so they've always wanted to marginalize ron paul. and frankly his coalition isn't big enough to actually win the republican nomination. they ought to be awfully nervous about him launching a third party bid. we have a landscape right now, where americans have an 8% approval rating of congress. both parties have historically low approval ratings. there's a lot of dissatisfaction out there. and if ron paul did decide to mount a third party bid, would be very, very damaging to republicans. and essentially hand the victory to president obama. they have to be very careful about the way they treat ron paul. >> i think that jon huntsman's ego is big enough he would think about a third party bid, the way this is breaking down. yesterday laura bush told a group in florida that both she and her husband want jeb bush to run in 2012. e.j. dionne is there anyway this can happen if they get to the convention and can't make up
their mind and throw their hands up in the air and in walks jeb bush? >> if mitt romney had lost new hampshire and you could imagine a really long race with ron paul taking a fifth of the vote fairly consistently and winners winning -- different people winning, maybe you could have a brokered convention. but right now, it's very hard to see how that could happen. there are a bunch of republicans, bill crystal is another one who's been pushing the idea of jeb bush. there are a lot of republicans that aren't happy with the field. that's what the polls show. jeb bush is one guy they keep turning to. and some of them long to bring chris christie in, even though he's committed to romney. >> and, of course, the breaking news, colbert hands over the super pac to jon stewart. we have to have more on that tomorrow. great to have you all with me tonight. >> thank you. is it time for mitt romney to address the issue of race in
his mormon faith? my next guest, theology professor aubrey hendricks says yes it is. we can thank the supreme court's citizens united case for unlimited corporate spending in elections. but one state is bucking the supreme court and arguing an exception to its disastrous decision. that story coming up. stay with us.
i have never been so naive as to believe we could get beyond our racial divisions in a single election cycle. or with a single candidate. but very asserted a firm conviction a conviction rooted in my faith in god and in my faith in the american people, that working together, we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds. and that, in fact, we have no choice. we have no choice if we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union.
>> four years ago, president obama's powerful speech on race in america came on the heels of relentless attacks about his association with the reverend jeremiah wright. some believe it's time for mitt romney to step up to the podium and give his own speech on race, addressing his mormon faith. aubrey hendricks writes in the post today the book of mormon condemns black people as cursed. after they had dwindled in unbelief, they became a dark and loathsome and a filthy people, full of idleness and all manner of abombenations. >> pretty heavy stuff. next african-americans were not allowed to fully participate in the mormon priesthood until 1978. mitt romney, who was once a leader in the mormon church addressed the issue in late 2007 on "meet the press."
>> i love my faith. and i'm not going to distance myself in anyway from my faith, can you see what i believed and what my family believed by looking at our lives. my dad marched with martin luther king. my mom was a tireless crusader for civil rights. i was anxious to see a change in my church. i remember when i heard about the change being made, i was driving home from law school, i think. i heard it on the radio, i pulled over and literally wept. even at this day it's emotional. and so it's very deep and fundamental in my life, and my most core beliefs that all people are children of god. >> one of the people who thinks romney's statement doesn't go far enough is the author of the huffington post article i mentioned, aubrey hendricks. he's a professor of biblical interpretation at the new york thee logical seminary and author of "the universe bends toward justice." thanks for joining us tune the. >> my pleasure. >> what does mitt romney need to
do if anything in your opinion? >> first i want to make it clear that i am not accusing mitt romney of being a racist. i have no evidence of that case. given the racist history of the mormon church for 150 years, the first 150 years of its existence, it held all black people as a curse, the cursed seed of cane. and that didn't change until he was over 30 years old. what he needs to do, i think, is to assure america that he does not maintain any residual feelings that black people are inferior. because that's what his religion taught for 150 years, that black folks were a curse, and, therefore, inferior to the uncursed whites. >> in the sound bit we played, did he not do that? >> i think there's a difference in saying -- it's very admirable that he believes that all people have equal rights. he also said that he felt that all people had equal rights to
get into heaven. but that's not the same as saying that he also believes that all people are inherently equal, that no one is inferior to anyone else. that's a very important distinction, because as we've seen in our nation's history, that when leaders did not -- were not fully convinced that black people were the equals of whites, that we were inferior in some way, they always treated our interests as inferior, and we suffered quite a bit. >> do you think he should address this issue in the manner that president obama addressed race and religion back when he was dealing with the criticism of his association with jeremiah wright? >> no question. to assure americans that he is -- that he can be the president of all americans equally. i mean, president obama had to do that, as a result of -- >> and you think mitt romney needs to -- >> yes, yes, president obama had to do it because of a few statements by one man. we're talking about romney, who was -- who grew up in this faith
for -- into man hood believing that -- at least accepting this doctrine that black people were inferior. let's face it, this was taught very deeply in that faith. it's not just some overlay, it's a doctrine and codified. >> if this man were to become president of the united states, do you think the congressional black caucus has an obligation to go down this road? >> go down this road? >> in other words, expect some explanation from mitt romney on how he's going to deal with minorities in this country? >> i think that we all deserve an answer right away. >> and this isn't condemning him, this is the vetting process. >> exactly. giving him a chance to but all americans at ease, that he's going to be a president equally -- that he's able to do that. because until he comes right out and says, no, i do not believe that this is divinely ordained, that these are orders from god in my holy book, it raises
questions as to whether there is some residual belief in inferiority in black people. >> in the book of mormon, after i read -- they became a dark and loathsome and filthy people in all abominations. i mean, that is heavy stuff. is there other stuff in there? >> oh, yeah. i cite three other passages it that are just as bad if not worse. >> rick santorum has had more publicized issues with what many people think are making racist comments. is this a problem in the republican party? >> yes, they've always had a problem with race. the republican party has always wanted to conserve power and wealth where it already was. and as we know from most of our nation's history, it was with the rich whites in america.
and if you go back to william buckley who was the godfather of modern conservatism, he was very much a racist. he came right out and said that black people were inferior people, and so we did not deserve the same kind of policy considerations as others. he said that. it's documented. >> professor hendricks, thank you for your time tonight. >> my pleasure. scott walker leads the nation in job loss, but south carolina senator jim demint wants him to be president. psycho talk is next. ♪ [ male announcer ] a simple gesture can spark romance anytime. and when it does, men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis for daily use. cialis for daily use is a clinically proven low-dose tablet you take every day so you can be ready anytime the moment's right, even if it's not every day. [ man ] tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medications
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for the republican nomination yet, but today he gave us an idea of the kind of candidate he'll support, and it's scary stuff. >> in business, if you're going to in business. you have to make hard and painful decisions in the short term to save the whole company in the long term. that's what we're missing in washington right now. we don't need someone who will make mold promises they can't keep. we really need someone like a go governor scott walker able to take the pain in order to save the whole state. >> does he want scott walker to be president of the united states after he has absolutely butchered the state of wisconsin? jim demint says he doesn't want a candidate who makes bold promises he can't keep. scott walker promised new jobs by 2015, but since he's implemented the education slashing, union busting budget. wisconsin has been steadily losing jobs. in fact, walker's state leads the nation in job loss.
wisconsin has lost jobs for, count them, five consecutive months. including 14,600 public and private sector jobs. in november. which brings net job creation under walker down to 16,000 jobs. he has 233,000 jobs to go to fulfill his bold promise of a quarter million jobs. folks, it isn't going to happen. scott walker's policies are running the state right into the ground. the people of the state can't stand the guy. that's why they're going to recall him. that story is coming up next week. for jim demint to say he wants someone like walker to run the country is job killing psycho talk. >> the very first case to challenge citizens united. the supreme court case which opened the flood gates of corporate cash in politics. montana is holding the line. steve bullock joins me next. stay with us.
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big finish tonight. the big concern by many americans is citizens united and its effect. finally there's a direct challenge to citizens united. the supreme court case which led to unlimited, unidentified corporate spending in politics. the 2010 case was so dangerous, so wrongly decided, president obama addressed it in his state of the union address. >> with all due deference to separation of powers, last week the supreme court reversed a century of law that i believe
will open the flood gates for special interests. including foreign corporations to spend without limit in our election. >> what did sam alito think now? that was the night he was shaking his head no. even though they dealt with the federal election law, it was widely interpreted to strike down any state law with corporate spending bans. so here's a map of the 24 states with hair own laws restricting corporate spending before citizens united? quite a few. a lot of them in the middle of the country. 23 out of the 24 states stopped enforcing their own restrictions. only one state, montana, defended its own law. and now the montana supreme court has agreed. this guarantees a big showdown. but the the united states supreme court recognizes the succession, it would lessen the terrible impact of citizens united. i'm joined by montana attorney
general steve bullock who led the fight to defend montana's law. steve, thanks for being with us tonight. this is something that's really going to catch the attention of the american people because of so much money that is just pouring into these campaigns. if and when this case goes up to the supreme court. is there any chance they would strike it down. >> i think there is. at the end of the day, the citizens united dealt with a different system. the federal elections and federal laws. the vast majority of elections are at the state and local level. and there's real differences there. and that's what we pushed, and that's -- you know, i think the court would recognize that. >> the state's rights crowd like to talk about the importance of the 50 rights in the country. your state has a story to tell about what happened when there's unlimited corporate spending in elections, doesn't it? >> yeah. you know.
it was about a century ago that by citizens initiative we passed the corrupt practicing act of 1912. and that happened because at one point there was complete corporate domination by the kings of our electoral system. from our legislature to judges to county assessors. everybody was basically on the company payroll. so the citizens passed the law. for the last century it sure served us well. >> the united states supreme court allowed states to enforce their own campaign finance laws, would super pacs still be able to spend money in states, like the state of montana? >> well, super pac can certainly continue to spend money in the federal election, but not where the vast majority of elections occur, and that's at the state and local level. you think about it. the average u.s. senator spends $8.5 million. in montana the average state senator is spending $17,000. so it's a big difference.