tv MSNBC Live MSNBC January 19, 2012 8:00am-9:00am PST
third jewel in his nomination for the crowd. hi, everybody. i'm thomas roberts. fast and moving developments to talk about here. and we are following t latest bombshell on the 2012 gop campaign trail. in this hour we are expecting rick perry ace official withdrawal from the race. perry will speak in north charleston with a campaign that's ending with a whimper and the associated presses reporting that he'll put his political weight behind newt gingrich. let's get inside how this would impact the race. mark halperin, editor at large for "time," and wayne slater, for "the dallas morning news." we do have a lot of moving parts, will you let's start with the breaking news. mark, why are we seeing it happen now, what does it ultimately mean as we ramp up to
another debate? >> he did poorly in iowa, came straight here, has been showing up in polls well below 10%. he had are a choice to see things through through saturday, do very poorly, or try to control his departure more effectively. we saw jon huntsman do the same thing. sources of suggesting he's going to endorse newt gingrich. he got in in part by the notion of stopping mitt romney from being the republican nominee. he has a chance to help newt gingrich do what he could not do himself. moments like this really hurt him. these are some of the gaffes. take a look. >> commerce, education, and what's the third one there? let's see.
>> you can't name the third one? >> education, commerce and -- let's see. i can't. the third one i can't. sorry. oops. >> that was painful. but wayne, how surprised are you by the overall performance and him buttoning things up before he has to take to another debate stage. >> i'm not that surprised. i thought he was going to drop out after iowa, as many of his staff did. that performance as well as another debate performance absolutely killed his chances. he's a southerner, a good social conservative, comes into a state like south carolina and was fifth if the polls? he knew the handwriting was on the wall. i would talk to people in iowa, new hampshire, and here in south carolina, people who ought to be predisposed to vote for him, but they felt he simply wasn't ready for the job. they want to beat barack obama, they want something on the debate stage that will beat
barack obama, and mark is right, one of the original reasons that perry got into the race was his feeling that somebody ought to be an alternative to newt gingrich -- to mitt romney. it's just not going to be him. >> we want to talk about evangelicals. in the home state of perry, they met last weekend and came out of that state with a decision it should be rick santorum. how painful was that for governor perry's run? >> very painful. here they are, meeting in his home state, many of his own folks, and they're saying to him you're not the guy, we're vote fog somebody else. again it's a reflection of the feeling -- and i was with rick perry a few nights an in greenville, south carolina, and you saw perry with evangelicals,
appealing to evangelicals who like him, but they knew he simply wasn't that guy, but the last weekend's meeting, still showed a split. at one point james dobson raised questions about gingrich -- is this the guy we want? so they remain divided. what perry's move today could do is help coalesce things and provide extra momentum for gingrich, who was not the first chiles either. >> again, i want to remind everybody, we are waiting for the formal announcement from rick perry. he'll be speaking in charleston, south carolina, announcing he'll be dropping out of the gop race, and we have the picture there on the topside of your screen. mark, let me talk about the fact that laura ingraham and eric erickson came out saying he needed to drop out.
how hurtful are their voices? >> well, we saw at the beginning of the entry the weak debate performances, and the oops moment in michigan, he never got back up. it's analysis nating. he had a lot of people in the talk radio world who wanted him to get back up, wanted him to be the alternative to mitt romney. he had plenty of money for television ads, he got the message out, he never was able to get back up and have a comeback. i think a big part of it, as wayne suggested, those debate performances were so widely covered and so weak, republicans didn't have the confidence in hmm to be the one to take on mitt romney, and then take on the president. joining ultimate conversati -- us in the conversation is carey dann, embedded in the campaign. when this news broke, what were
the rumblings that may have caught people off-guard. >> reporter: i'm told, thomas there were conversations that had been sort of bubbling ongoing, recognizing that perry was not getting traction, despite kind of clicking with the voters and military voters here in south carolina. personally i can tell you on the road when he was with the crowds, the crowds were -- found themselves idea logically aligned, but they kept on saying we just don't think he can win. at that support started to bleed away, the conversations among advisers started to happening, especially after jon huntsman dropped out. it became apparent that they were probably going to come in last here in south carolina, which is a particular blow. this was told from the very beginning, it's why he decided to keep going, give this one last shot. he thought and his team thought if he had a breakout moment, a
great debate performance, or if one of the other campaigns took a fatal blow, he would be able to step into that role. it became very apparent with the conservative commentators calling for him to drop out, some of his best allying, it became apparent there wasn't a path forward. >> thank you carrie. here we have the poll numbers. the latest nbc news/marist poll. how damning has this been? so many were excited to see him throw his hat in the ring, but how damning has it been? >> his numbers nationally,
particularly like in south carolina back in august, september, he was in the high 30s, so a drop from the high 30s to 4% in our nbc/marist poll is a precipitous drop. you republicans want someone to beat president obama in 2012, and that poll in south carolina, 39% of republicans that's a plurtity in the poll, this is the most important ability is to beat president obama. they thought rick perry could not go toe to toe with president obama. that going toe to toe is one of the newt gingrich's top sound bites on the campaign trail, something that really registers with republicans, and of course you look at every speed that mitt romney gives as well, it's all about electability. >> i want to talk more about iowa. we have other breaking news out of the iowa, that the iowa gop is saying upon a full count rick
santorum is the winner there, not mitt romney. we'll explore that further, but i do taunt to talk about rick perry left and went back to texas, and a lot of people thought he was going to formally drop out. instead we got michele bachmann that dropped out. what does that say now? and are you surprised he waited this long? >> i am a bit surprised. everybody thought on the staff he was going to drop out, going back to texas to rekrr, but he had a conversation with his wife, anita and his son, who said don't do it, go into south carolina. we're with you. we're backing you. perry thought anything could happen. the question of whether or not folks could coalesce around somebody other than romney is
still open. he immediate that decision based on a conversation with his wife and a few staffers who said it doesn't look good, but why not direct your own exit, not have somebody else look like you're going to be defeated. >> here he is, in fifth place, and it was going to look even worse for him. so he decided i think fundamentally even though he hoped that south carolina might restore his reputation a bit, it was further going to damage his brand, and so he said this is enough. >> as i understand it, we've had the two-minute warning that the governor will be joining us. real quickly, though, we do expect or it has been put out there that the governor will endorse newt gingrich. what do you think that will do tonight for the debates? >> the conventional wisdom was rick perry remains in this race
would help split of that vote. what rick perry has the potential of doing with today's news by dropping out is to signal to conservatives who might have been on the fence, who don't want to support mitt romney, that newt gingrich is that person. it's interesting over the weekend, we saw a similar coalescing or attempt to coalesce from evangelical christians, that that didn't gain a lot of steam. we'll see if that has more power than what evangelicals did over the weekend in texas. >> that was such a big development, that core group saying they wanted to endorse behinds rick santorum. what has been the biggest surprise to you as we look back over what rick perry has brought to this very heated contest? >> i'm astonished he's done so poorly, but looking back, the
seeds of destruction were really sown over the last decade. his staff kept him away from media, from -- discouraged many debates as governor. that's fine if you're running as governor of texas. he was successful. running for president of the united states is hard. rick perry learned it was hard. i traveled with george bush in 2000 and watched him develop. remember they had prepared for more than two years. i hate to interrupt you, but rick perry is on the scene with his wife anita and the rest of his family. let's listen in. >> particularly to my incredible staff this year. i want to say thanks to each of you for the work you have done. you all are awesome. nelson, thank you. it's been a real privilege to be
able to learn and to grow under your work. you know, as i've stated numerous times during the campaign, this campaign has never been about the candidates. it's -- you know, i ran for president, because i love america. i love our people. i love our freedom as a matter of fact, this mission is greater than any one man as i have traveled across this great country, california, down into florida, numerous states in between, obviously. i discovered this tremendous purpose and resiliency of our people. they never lost hope. despite the circumstances that we find ourselves in, they hadn't stopped believing in the promise of america. they haven't stopped believing in the american dreams.
americans are doubt, but we never will be counted out. we're too great a people for that. what's broken in america is not our people. it's our politics. what we need in washington is a place that's humbler, with a federal government that is smaller, so that our people can live freer. i entered this campaign offering a unique perspective, a governor who had led a large state, leading the nation in job creation, an executive leader who had implemented conservative principles. a son of tenant farmers who was born with little more than a good name. but who has experienced the great opportunity and freedom of this country. but i've never believed that the cause of conservatism is embodied by one individual. our party, and the conservative
philosophy transcends any one individual. it's a movement of ideas that are greater than any one of us, and will live long past any of us in our lives. as a former air force pilot, i don't get confused. i know we can't lose track of the ultimate objective in carrying out our mission, and that objective is not only to defeat president obama, but to replace him with a conservative leader who will bring about real change. our country's hurting, make no mistake about that. 13 million people out of work. 50 million of our citizens on food stamps. $15 trillion national debt and growing. we need bold, conservative leadership that will take on the
entrenched interests and give the american people their country back. i've always believed the mission is greater than the man. as i contemplated the future of this campaign i have come to the conclusion that there is no viable path forward for me in this 2012 campaign. therefore today i am suspending my campaign and endorsing newt gingrich for president of the united states. i believe newt is a conservative visionary who can transform our country. we've had our differences, which campaigns will inevitably have, and newt is not perfect, but who among us is? the fact is there is forgiveness for those who seek god, and i believe in the power of redemption, for it is a central tenet of my christian faith.
i have no question that newt gingrich has the heart of a conservative reformer, the ability to rally and captivate the conservative movement. the courage to tell those washington interests to take a hike if if that's what's in the best interest of our country. as a texan, i've never shied away from a fight particularly when i considered the cause to be righteous, but as someone who has always admired a great, if not the greatest texas governor sam houston, i know when it's time to make a strategic retreat. so i will leave the trail, return home to texas, wind down my 2012 campaign, and i will do so with pride, knowing i gave fully of myself of a cause worthy of this country. as i head home, i do so with the
love of my life by my side, a woman who makes every day good when she is there by me. that's my wife anita. honey, thank you for all you've done. she has been an incredible patriot during this process. i also want to thank my son griffin and his beautiful wife meredith, sydney, who is not with us here today, but the fact is with a good wife, with three loving children and a loving god who is in my life, things are going to be good no matter what i do. i'm proud of the policies we put forward to the american people, and i believe that we provided the right past forward for our party and our nation.
overhaul washington, providing i think the road map for that, proclaiming the tenth amendment and all the goodness of allows the states to be more competitive in the local governments. creating energy and energy security, energy jobs and energy security. cutting spending, eliminating these unnecessary federal agencies. cutting taxes to that flat and simple 20%. i'll continue to fight for these conservative reforms, because the future of our country is at stake, and the road we're traveling today, president obama's road, is a very dangerous one. i want to thank some wonderful individuals who i have come to know and admire and who have stood by my side in this state.
dawson, thank you for being the loyal supporter you've been, a strong and good man in the united states congress, mitt mull vainie, ambassador wilkins, i talk to all of them this morning. i just want to thank my supporters, the men and women who have come across the country to be here in south carolina. they were in new hampshire and iowa. god bless you for loving your country, you know, for volunteering, for being here, and for making a difference. in particular i want to say thanks to governor bobby jindal who has just been a fabulous spokesperson, steve forbes, who i -- as i know him more, i admire him greatly. what a fabulous patriotic american and governor sam brownback. senator imhoff, senator miller,
sam graves. we have come to have such great respect for and reflect that i love of country. and i want to say a really special thanks to three distinguished veterans who have joined me on the trail. medal of honor recipient mike thornton. he spent the last two days with us as we traveled across south carolina. navy cross recipient marcus latrell. thank you, brother, i appreciate you coming and being with us today. my christian brother up in greenville, and has traveled so many miles with me, young marine captain dan moran. they truly represent what is best about america. who give so much of themselves.
and they have been uplifting for me as a citizen, as the commander in chief of our texas forces, and again they are truly my heros. you know, i began this race with a sense of calling. i felt led into the arena to fight for the future of this country, and ilfeel no different today than i did then, knowing a calling never guarantees a particular outcome, but the journey that tests one's faith and one's character. so now the journey leads me back to texas, neither discouraged nor disenchanted, but indeed rewarded highly by the experience, and resolute to remain in the arena and in the service of my country. our country needs bold
leadership and real transformation. our country deserves that. we must rise to the occasion and elect a conservative champion to put our nation back on the right track, and this i know. i'm not done fighting for the cause of conservatism. as a matter of fact, i have just begun to fight. god bless you, god bless this great country of america. thank you for coming out and being with us today. seeing there's no viable past forward for me, the governor rick perry suspends his campaign for the gop nomination for the president, saying he'll return home to texas and he's going to do so where he's been rewarded highly, saying he's proud of the campaign he's run, but he knows he will not be able to get the nomination from his party and throws his weight now behind newt gingrich. wayne slater joins me as well as
mark murray, wayne, when we listen to that, what are you taken by in the fact he feels good about the campaign he's run, feels highly rewarded by what he's learned, but just now starting to fight for conservati conservatism. >> what he wanted to be months ago and would still look to be is a significant voight on the national stage for the republican party. he could still run for president? four years. i know that's a long way away, but the most significant thing i heard politically out of his comments was what he said about newt gingrich. he said we believe in redemption. the problem here with gingrich is some social conservatives who like rick perry, like rick santorum, are doubtful about newt gingrich, but the idea of believes in redemption that gingrich said i now ma made a
mistake, is the most powerful message that gingrich has to try to rally the conservatives. what perry did is advance that narrative. >> when we look at what happened here what is the chances newt gingrich will walk away as a winner. what does it mean as we ramp up to what's going to happen to the voting in south carolina on saturday? >> thomas, our new nbc poll in south carolina shows newt gingrich within striking distance, particularly after monday night's republican debate. of course there's another debate tonight, but there has been some movement on monday, you end up newt gingrich trailing mitt romney by 15 points, on tuesday
it was five points but making up a lot of ground on that tuesday. thomas, i was also struck. nondid rick perry say there needs to be a replacement for president obama in the white house, but it tees to be done with a conservative, somebody who actually bring real change. it was also an indictment on mitt romney. there really isn't a lot of love lost between rick perry and mitt romney. it seemed evident in that speech that a lot of it had to do with the indiet on the person who everyone assumes is the front-runner. >> craig melvin joins the conversation from south carolina. as i understand it we got a note in a newt gingrich was watching the speech. as you know, personally and professionally the politics of
south carolina, explain what you think this will do. >> reporter: here's the thing, particularly in south carolina, things like this can potentially have a major effect. i'm staying at a hotel nearby, and the southern republican leadership conference, it's their headquarters hotel here in charleston. i talked to some folks this morning, talking about -- talking about the race in general. they didn't seem all that surprised that rick perry was dropping out. in fact a handful said they thought it would happen sooner. what they said this morning, and i'm hearing on the ground in the palmetto state is that if an antiromney candidate is going to emerge, this is the absolute last chance for that to happen. at the just leaves newt gingrich and rick santorum. herman cain is in town, and
he'll be addressing the same group over the next two days. we're hearing we could be getting another endorsement from herman cain as. >> from the comedy side of things, with stephen colbert say he's trying to bring attention to what's going on with the super pacs, but how are people in south carolina taking that in? the seriousness of what this all means, but we have this dommic basically trying to stir things up, to prove what super pacs are all about. >> stephen colbert wildly popular, but there are a handful of folks -- oddly you should just asked that. i was talking to a guy before i came out, and he said the shtick is kind of getting old. granted, it was a former huntsman campaign worker, but he said, you know, the colbert comedy is getting kind of old. you also have to wonder if you
were herman cain standing next to stephen colbert and he turns around and endorses santorum or newt gingrich, if that happens, how seriously can you take that endorsement from herman cain? again we are waiting for newt gingrich to start his town hall. he was watching governor rick perry drop out of the race. gingrich was watching outside of his bus, so we will expect coverage of that to see how newt gingrich will react, as well -- the other breaking news we have this morning is the fact that now the gop in iowa has come out saying rick santorum is the winner there. let me ask you about this. it was a historic ride for mitt romney having come out of the new hampshire as the perceived winners. now he goes into south carolina
and we have the news that rick santorum is the gop's official winner. in south carolina it's really anybody hayes guess right now. >> thomas, it was a significant develop, and essentially turned the race on its head. you mentioned the history. mitt romney we thought had achieved something that no other candidate had done before, win both iowa and new hampshire. the fact he did not win iowa is a blow to him and his campaign, at least to that northwestibility core onation that we all thought was going to occur in south carolina. so when you add the iowa news, you add today's rick perry dropping out and endorsing newt gingrich, you also look at the polls showing that newt gingrich is gaining on mitt romney, it spells into this northwestibility that mitt romney will be the republican
nominee. make no mistake mitt romney is the best financed candidate, the one who has the strongest staff. his candidacy is the one that's in position to get most of the delegates in a long and drawnout campaign, but this does at least right for now end some of the talk he would be core nated after system system. >> mark, i just want to be clear. i'm not saying that nbc news is confirming a winner out of iowa. we are not. the iowa gop is confirming that rick santorum is the winner. however, there are missing precincts. explain about the missing precinct. how could this happen? >> that's a great question, thomas. there really isn't an explanation. we have to understand what a caucus and the republican caucuses is. it's a simple straw vote, and it's taken in all these precincts across the state of iowa. it is very rare when you end up having a statistic cal tie on
something like this, to get the certified results, count them again and make sure they match up. this does bring back the statistic cal tie in elections. when you have a standard cal tie sometimes things changes. you it makes people want to pull the hair out from their head when you have to deal with something when it comes down to a handful of votes that are separating two candidates. i want to be clear that the iowa certified vote totals here is the promised event to newt
gingrich arriving to cheers crowds, this on the heels of the fact that rick perry has just dropped out endorsing him. let's listen in. >> thank you for the powerful introduction. calista and i are very thankful to be here. let me say, first of all, i was very honored and very humbled to have governor perry speak so well about endorsing me a few minutes ago, as he withdrew from the campaign. calista and i are fond of rick and anita perry. they're terrific people. he's a great patriot. he understands exactly the mission of defending and expanding freedom and he
understands that every citizen has different ways to parts pat. i have asked him to head up a tenth amendment enforcement project reaching out to every governme government, reaching out to state legislatures, working with conservative legislators in washington so we can have a strong platform plank in tampa in august on the tenth amendment, and we can have a very strong bill we can put in the 21st century contract with americans in september, and we can then pass that legislation no later than the end of the first quarter of 2013. to return power to the citizens, the communities and the states and get it out of washington, d.c.
he agreed he would tackle that huge project, which is something we have talked about for several years. i'm also burdened. i want to share with you for a minute before we talk about national security, because i don't tum here to ask you to be for me. if you're for me, you're going to vote and then go home and say i sure hope newt fixes it. we are here, because we want you to be by our side every day. reminding the city council, county commission, school board, we are all going to move america back on the right track, and we have to do it at every level. that requires citizen engagement. the scale of change we're talking about is so large we're inevitably going to make mistakes. we have to have an open flow of communication, whether it's
facebook or twitter or youtube, e-mail, we somehow have to learn from people when things aren't working. we have to learn when there are new and better ideas. we have to learn when reality is changing. 536 elected officials cannot change this country. they're not that smart and their staffs aren't that smart, but millions of citizens working together can in fact create an enormous difference. if we succeed in getting the congress to truly transfer back home, as we shrink washington, we have to grow citizenship, so i'm asking you to be with me as a citizen taking on new and important responsibility. in that tradition, i want to compliment captain howard, who is here today. in buford, south carolina,
newt gingrich having a town hall meeting, talking on the heels of the fact that governor rick perry has announced he will be suspending his gop nomination. joining mess is chris hayes, is a msnbc host on saturday and sunday mornings. you picked me a great time to join me, and i need it. as we're watching literally all these moving parts. what does this mean for mitt romney? he hayes having a tough week. now that we have the results coming out of -- it's not rick anymore, it's mitt. >> i think the romney campaign has done a good job of laying out what their approach is, what their campaign message is, and more or less sticking to it. they have shown a reasonable degree of discipline. i don't think they're going to
be that perturbed by a switch of 15 oar 25 oar 50 votes, whatever it is. they got the momentum they needed out of it. there's no way to recon figure the -- remember, theal indication of the delegates hasn't happened yet. what matters is the momentum. that momentum was set. the vote total changing now can't change what happened in iowa, so i think they're perfectly happy to let folks talk about santorum, but santorum is no longer a threat. gingrich is the threat in south carolina, and if they can best them, it's hard to see how they don't have a clear path to me. >> when tiffs eight voice going to romney, it was a win. you can't get it back, but you're absolutely right, the momentum now taking them to south carolina, that's the momentum that newt gingrich is trying to to stop.
percolating is abc's "nightline" interview. they released a clip of that interview just before the 11:00 hour. take a listen to this. >> i said to him, we've been married a long time, and he said yes, but you want me all to yourself. calista doesn't care what i do. >> what was he saying to you, do you think? >> he was asking to have an open marriage, and i refused. >> he wanted an open marriage. >> yeah, i accept the fact he hats somebody else in his life. >> and you said? >> no. no. that was not a marriage. >> so a lot of people are referring to this as a bulk shell. she's number two. there was jackie who was number one, then mary ann, then
calista. >> you really know your gingrich wives. >> i watch it every night. but when we talk about this -- i guess what she's trying to put out there is the fact he's not living the life behind the scenes that he talks about publicly. she's trying to connect some dots. >> it's been known for a long time. i think it's been a huge strike against him. in fact the revelations of the affair were precipitated in essentially stepping down as speaker, so i don't think there's anything new here. the reason i think it matters is from the perspective of momentum. this early primary game is a game of momentum. we have seen it all the about candidates sort of riding crests of moment tunnel and being knocked down. this is the kind of thing that if you're the gingrich campaign, you certainly don't want two days before an election.
the romney campaign has to be pretty happy with this playing out, if no-no other reason than it refocusing the conversation. mitt romney had a few back weeks substantively, and now he has to talk about why he doesn't want to release taxes? and all of that is subsumed by a conversation about what newt gingrich -- the dynamics of his marriage 15 years ago. >> jackie gingrich curbman was supposed to be a guest this hour, she decided not to. we were going to have her on to talk about what was happening with her father's campaign. this broke right before 11:00 with the nightline information coming out. to a casual observer, this is going to open newt gingrich to a lot of new questions. basically does he have an open
marriage with his wife now? >> look, i never quite know how as political journalists we should responsibly deal with this. there's a certainly level which people's private lives are complicated. >> but when theorem getting into everybody's bedroom, especially the lbgt community, don't you think it's fair -- >> i do think it's fair game. i don't know, i think that we -- we know what we know about newt gingrich's marital history, more or less. people can make up their minds what that says about him as a person. maybe there's a lot more new information, but it seems like all of that has been priced into the stock, which we say is trading fairly low. a lot of momentum going into the debates. thank you, sir. appreciate it. we'll be back with much more right after this. so uh this is my friend frank and his, uh, retirement plan.
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welcome back to msnbc. just a short time ago, there we had it, governor rick perry telling his supporters that he was going to suspend his campaign, saying there was no viable path to the nomination and also endorsed newt gingrich. speaking of which newt gingrich is talking in buford, south carolina at a town hall right now. he was watching perry's speech from his campaign bus outside that event, then went onto the stage there with his wife calista, to greet the crowd that was waiting there for him and thanks the governor. joining mess is ed schultz, great to have you with me. >> good to be here. >> a lot of moving parts. what does it mean for rick perry to drop out, and was it really
expected? >> it's interesting from a number of different standpoints. number one, the parochial attitude here, you have a southern governor who is not going to endorse a flip flopping northeastern conservative in mitt romney. he as going to go with the southern boy, newt gingrich. this may motivate aidle son to throw in more money. it could mean a big pile of money, because rick perry still has money. we're the true conservatives, we're on the same page when it comes to taxes, deregulation, in fact i want you to help me on the tenth amendment, states' rights so we can take down obamacare. i don't think it's enough to derail mitt romney as the odds-on favorite here, but it will make the head wince stronger and give a lot of social conservatives hope. it wouldn't surprise me if the
social conservatives may call for a third meeting to vet themselves and say, okay, what does it mean? we don't want romney. can newt pull this thing off? >> from the evangelical meeting they they threw their support behind rick santorum. >> they did. >> then going to new hampshire, which everyone basically said was romney's, now he goes down to south carolina, but here we have this mix that iowa is saying it was rick santorum, still the win is his in new hampshire, but going into south carolina, newt gingrich is saying, come on, the south is mine. >> if he wins that mean romney is 1 for 3, but he still has more money and infrastructure. his most recent meeting with more wall street barons will certainly help, and i'm sure he's making promises about taxes and such things as that to
motivate them to give more money. if newt doesn't win south carolina it probably will be over. this may propel him to win south carolina, which of course the money can change fast. perry can help gingrich. gingrich knows that. he knows how he can coalesce conservatives behind him. he has already asked santorum to get out. isn't it interested in then the next couple days later here is perry dropping out. we'll see. if santorum doesn't play well in south carolina, would you think he would move forward gingrich over mitt romney. i think the south is going to stick together for money and for politics, and i think in some strange ways this may draw out jim demint to make a decision. >> nikki haley is supporting mitt romney. she had tea party support that ushered her into power there.
meanwhile -- >> nikki haley is in trouble. her approval rating in south carolina is 34%, with just republicans, it's at about 50%. so she's not putting any wind at the back of mitt romney right now. in fact she may be dragging him a bit. she hasn't helped him at all on this him explain anything about his offshore accounts or anything like that. this is something that romney is going to have to deal with and he's going to have to deal with it quickly. if i was advising romney, i would say, the taxes come out today to take the wind out of the sails of newt gingrich getting some support from perry. perry doesn't poll very well. and he's been made fun of, because he's not as academic as the other candidates. but he's got money. and how do you win? you've got to have money. how do you continue on? you've got to have money. >> ed schultz, i'm going to ask you to stick around for the next block. i have a couple questions for you. we're back with much more right after this. hello!
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who among us is? the fact is, there is forgiveness for those who seek god. and i believe in the power of redemption, for it is a central tenant of my christian faith. >> there we have it earlier this hour. rick perry, formally announcing that he's going to be dropping out of the nomination for the gop side of things, as we get heated up. there is newt gingrich there on the right-hand side of your screen. he's talk in buford, south carolina, saying that he is ready to debate president obama. wants to follow him around on the campaign trail to debate him if he has to. but i want to talk to ed schultz, who is joining me more about newt gingrich and the fact that rick perry has now endorsed newt. abc has this interview coming out on "nightline" tonight with marianne gingrich, newt's second wife, basically saying he wanted an open marriage. newt did not talking negatively on his wife on the "today" show this morning, saying his
daughters speak for him. we asked jackie gingrich cushman for this hour. how damning do you think this is? >> that just goes to show how delicate this is for the gingrich campaign. he would be smart enough not to personally respond to it. the clip that i saw that you played earlier, she's, in my opinion, she looks emotionally scarred and angry, okay? is a get-back interview going to play with the american people? you're going to have to measure that interview versus this most recent sound bite by rick perry to talks about redemption, forgiveness, and being a changed person. i mean, rick perry, strong southern conservative says that christian he's going to stand behind newt gingrich. that's going to make people pause a little bit. so, it's not something that's going to end gingrich's campaign. it may tarnish it a little bit, but i would say probably not. >> got to think. there by the grace of god go i. ed schultz, good to see you, my
friend. thanks so much. you can catch ed this evening, every weeknight, for that matter, on "the ed show" right here on msnbc. that's going to do it for me today. it was a rock 'em sock 'em hour. i'll see you back here at 11:00 a.m. eastern. "now with alex wagner" is up next. and alex, i'm going to be watching closely to what you guys are going to be talking about. i don't know where you're going to start. >> please do watch closely, thomas. perry is out and the race is on. will this give newt gingrich some momentum to win south carolina? or will a new interview with wife number two spoil his day? and iowa, the beholder. we love puns. with no winner declared there, what does it all mean for mitt romney? plus, does the president's decision say not now to keystone mean he's now really ready for november? and we'll have the president's live speech from main street, usa, in disney world. all of that and so much more coming up next on "now."