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tv   News Nation  MSNBC  December 10, 2012 11:00am-12:00pm PST

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♪ ♪ i want candy ♪ ♪ i want candy hi, everyone. i'm tamron hall. the news nation is following developing news. president obama on the ground in michigan right now starting the
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week right where he left off last week. using the public to pressure republicans in to extending tax cuts for the middle class to avert the fiscal cliff. these are some live pictures of a diamler plant outside of detroit where the president will be speaking in a couple of minutes. the president greeted by the state's republican governor about an hour ago. one day before a controversial right to work bill the white house is opposed to is signed in to law. we'll have more on that later in the show but as far as the fiscal cliff, our first read team says we are already at the end game if the goal is to get a deal passed by december 21st. now that means the president and house speaker boehner have five days max to reach an agreement. that takes us to the 15th. then the legislation has to be written by the 18th. the president is now working two strategies to get a deal done. he met with speaker boehner yesterday. that's the first face to face in nearly a month and their one on one first one since july 2011.
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now, the other strategy as michigan congressman clark explains is going to the people. >> i think the best way to break this political gridlock in washington is to go to the american people because it's we the people that demand that the politicians and congress resolve this fiscal cliff but resolve in it a way that makes our country stronger. >> let me bring in the "news nation" political panel. neimalik henderson and goodfreend and contributor michael smerkonish. you the people, you talk to folks all day long on the radio show that you have that's syndicated in cities and states. what do you make of the president picking up where he left off so often going straight to the folks at snoem. >> he is really mained a full court press that began in the campaign season and never ended after election day and i think
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that two-prong attack you reference is good politics and seems to be working in large part because there's a vacuum within the republican party or on the right generally. you could say speaker boehner is the head now for negotiation purposes but i don't think anybody is really the president's equal in this dynamic and he's exploiting that to great advantage. >> let me bring you in on this, david. last week we discussed this, as well. the first read team pointed out we see a small deal, if you will, addressing the tax rate and then the later next year deal with some of the other things such as entitlement reform. you have republicans conceding to the fact making a deal on tax rates. let's play a little back and forth and concerns out there already amongst democrats in congress. let's play both. >> a lot of people are putting forth a theory and i actually think it has merit to give the president the 2% increase that he's talking about, the rate
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increase on the top 2% and all of a sudden the shift goes back to entitlements. >> there's been a move among conservative republicans of a bit of a distaste of medicare and social security. they're public program that is are successful and if it's proven that these public programs are successful which has been prooufb they're success it undercuts their view that government can't do anything right. >> is there a fear factor of democrats at this point if it's done in a small ball version versus a long ball version? >> yes, there is. i have to admit i'm a card carrying member of the sherrod brown fan club and he represents a breed of democrat that's proudly progressive and doesn't want to ceded ground to republicans but i think the president has to give boehner, speaker boehner, some ammunition with which to go back to the republicans in the house and say, look, the president is not
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getting everything he wants in this either. if he doesn't provide the republicans that kind of cover, that does in my view jeopardize a deal. that having been said, i think we are certainly seeing that republicans in the house and in the senate are agreeing in principle to allowing the top 2% tax bracket to increase and that's precisely what the president had laid down as his muffin greed cent. he said i will not sign an agreement that doesn't include that. i tend to think that senator corker nailed this one. if the republicans were to say, okay, you have it and pivot quickly, that will bray to their strength and something they should do. i don't see what they stand to gain by holding out much longer. >> david, we showed senators in the debate because you're not hearing house democrats, though, talk in the same way at least some house republicans with tax rates. when it's their turn to talk about entitlements and that's my specific question. is there a fear factor amongst
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house democrats that this could be next? >> well, i would defer to congressman chris van hollen who has said we democrats stipulated what we're willing to live with in medicare and that's putting something significant on the table. they did vote in favor of cuts they thought were too close to the bone and what the house democrats reverse to as their sort of wall, their bottom line. they wouldn't be willing to go much further. if the president goes beyond that, i think you would see folks crying foul. >> let's play what congressman tom cole said regarding what he believes is the feel amongst republicans in the house. let me play what he said. >> i think if it got to the floor it would carry. look. that's my judgment. i spent a lot of time counting votes and looking around. >> he was referring if something got to the floor regarding tax rate increase for top 2% but i want to play what congressman
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mccarthy of texas said. chuck todd pointed out this morning, he's the guy that does the counting behind the scenes and here's counter to what cole said in the latest interview or comments. >> the president want it is rates to go up. we don't want to be back here in another year, ten years answering the same questions. >> he doesn't express or show the same optimism that congressman cole did. so whose voice is more representative of republicans right now? in the house. >> well -- right. it's hard to know. i think you have to look at the general conversation that you hear going on among republicans and that is that they do seem to be to give on the tax rates and you heard that really initially after the president won. you heard republicans saying they wouldn't see any problem necessarily with raising the taxes and maneuvering going on behind the scenes. speaker boehner has to figure out a way to get his caucus in line on this but i do think initially or some point the republicans will have some
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leverage. if they do say for instance they raise the top tax rates, they might have leverage and then up to progressives to figure out what they're willing to give and take around the issue of entitlement reform i. >> your comments are so interesting because let me read this. it's shameful that republicans are playing in to mr. obama's hands. negotiating in public amongst themselves. prematurely giving up on the tax issue and undermining house speaker boehner in the process to which bill kristol responded, it would be great if they had an idea of what republicans can do. they don't. if they follow the editors over the cliff the only affect i'm afraid would be to turn a retreat in december in to a panicked rout in january. that's an interesting back and
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forth combined with what you said, as well. >> no, it is. i think you see in that back and forth a conservative outlet, at least the editorial page. some of the fissures within this party. just the direction of the party, there is, again, this big vacuum. there isn't a real leader of the republican party right now and seeing the different camps sort of fighting for primacy and fighting for a voice in terms of what the direction of this party will be not only on this issue but just in terms of larger issues about the direction of the country. >> and michael, as we pointed out, the president at the detroit diesel factory where diamler expected to make a huge business announcement but as i pointed out it's a two-prong visit and wants the message to people like very ones on this screen waiting for his arrival and you combine it with new polling out with politico of
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battleground states and shows people asked in favor of raising taxes on households over $250,000, 60% said they were in favor. reducing medicare for wealthy seniors, 51% favor that move. and then you ask about raising social security age, nearly two thirds oppose. 34% favor. 64% the number that matters. oppose it. the last number for you to look at is across the board cuts. 75% say they favor those cuts. 23% say they do not. so a hodgepodge of things and mostly focused on the taxes, 60%. the president has that number to use in addition to what we learned after the exit polling election night and the results of the election. >> and so, i think it's a foregone conclusion that tax rates for the wealthiest of americans are going up and as a pra practical matter, i don't understand why the gop doesn't
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agree to that sooner rather than later and the onus on the white house to give something relative to spending cuts and entitlement reforms. i think people want compromise and a bigger deal than just taxes going up for those 2% and doesn't get us where we need to go. >> david, let's play what alan simpson had to say regarding the growth. that's the overall end game here. growing the economy and not let lawmakers and such to posture before us. let's play it. >> not a single economist who talked to us in our hearings said we can't grow our way out of this with double digit growth for 20 years. you can't cut spending your way out of this baby or you ruin a very fragile economy and an emerge, you know, nation and can't tax your way out of this baby. this is impossible. >> so it is a combination of things and what do you make of the fact that in the approach perhaps to find some place here as the president, original
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criticism of the gop proposal is that it's out of balance. they're together one on one, first time they've met solo since 2011. what do we make of this strategy to perhaps find the balance and shut out some of the other voices? >> well, i think that is the single clearest indication of seriousness to date. that is, instead of having nancy pelosi, harry reid, and the president and boehner and mitch mcconnell, you have two men in one room and that to me says an awful lot. the fact they released a statement that's plu conic. the lines of communication are open. this indicates to me a degree of seriousness we haven't seen to date and very important. now,ly also point out to you on the issue of balance and what former senator simpson said, i'm paying attention to the statements of business leaders right now. in particular, look at randall stevenson, ceo of at&t who said
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i think we need to avoid the fiscal cliff and a balanced approach and someone who's trended republican personally, that says a lot. it gives cover to the republicans in congress that this is okay to do in the name of american business. >> david, i want to quickly pivot back to entitlement reform. if the republicans have cover with the business world, let's play what erskine bowles said about entitlements and the president. >> i don't see why the president would want to negotiate against himself on this. you know, if the republicans are going to be willing to reduce entitlements, he ought to talk about those that they're willing to support. >> so what will the give the president cover then? few people want to see the eligibility age changed, they don't want cuts in medicare for seniors in need and raising the social security age, 64% oppose
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that. >> well, let's start with social security if i may. i think the president and progressives in congress made fairly clear they don't believe social security contributes to the current deficit woes. >> we have had many, many democrats on who are lawmakers and they say the same thing. >> right. okay. so i would argue let's set that aside. if the president is successful in setting aside social security as an entitlement reform issue, that's a big win for him and then you focus on medicare and i do believe the president, a the administration at least in past budgets put pretty significant benefit cuts on the table coming to medicare. he should seize on that. he should start talking about that. he should in my view say these are things i have put forward. i put them forward again, not popular but we can do them and now. that is going to be unpopular among progressives. it just is. i think again to my earlier point, it gives him the credibility to say, this is, in fact, a balanced deal. >> thank you so much, david.
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nia-mali ka, henderson. michael, as well. still ahead this hour, a u.s. navy s.e.a.l. killed on a mission to rescue an american doctor in afghanistan. we'll have the latest. the pentagon released the s.e.a.l.'s identity and where he is from. another off the field devastating incident. josh brent out on bail charged in a drunk driving accident that took the life of his friend and teammate. how the team is responding. tea party leader dick armey on the tear if you will against the republican party after leaving his job at a conservative superpac. it is just one of the things we thought you should know today. you can join our conversation. you can find us. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about low-cost investing. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 at schwab, we're committed to offering you tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 low-cost investment options--
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welcome back. in just a few hours, the pentagon -- the past few hours, the pentagon released the name of the navy s.e.a.l. killed during that rescue mission in afghanistan. he's been identified as petty officer first class nicholas check. this is the first picture that's been released. we got this photograph within the last couple of minutes. he's from monroeville, pennsylvania. that is near pittsburgh. check was part of the s.e.a.l. team that rescued an american doctor kidnapped by the taliban last week. nbc news pentagon correspondent jim miklaszewski. what can you tell us? >> reporter: well, dr. joseph
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who's a member of u.s. relief agency who was working there in afghanistan, he and two afghan doctors were kidnapped on sunday -- i mean, on wednesday. somewhere east of kabul and they ended up taken hostage. to lagum province in eastern afghanistan. the doctors -- the afghan doctors were subsequently released and probably based on what they told the u.s. military. they felt that this navy s.e.a.l., nicholas checque in danger of injured or killed or transported to pakistan. they put together a rescue mission that took off somewhere around midnight on saturday night. sunday night afghanistan time. and when they flew in to the area, they encountered heavy enemy fire from the taliban. the u.s. navy s.e.a.l.s
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responded. they killed seven of the taliban and in the heat of that battle, were able to locate and rescue dr. joseph. but in that battle, it was first class petty officer navy s.e.a.l. nicholas checque struck by a single bullet and later died of that wound. >> mick, thank you for the defail d details of that raid. the supreme court's decision to take up cases on same-sex marriage, an adviser said it could force the white house's hand on this issue sooner than planned. even after controversy over his anti-american lyrics, what he said just before performing at christmas in washington, we'll let you know.
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welcome back. former south african president mandela is hospitalized for a third day now. the 94-year-old is said to be doing very well. he was admitted to the hospital saturday for what the current president said tests and care consistent with his age. no other details have been given. he last spent a night in the hospital back in february to determine the cause of an ab dim nal complaint. a year earlier for what turned out to be an acute respiratory infection. nothing that can make me feel worse than what i feel right now and for what i feel for the family. we're so sorry that this has happened to them. >> the australian deejays what made a prank call to the hospital where kit middleton was being treated and speaking to the public about the death of
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that nurse. they've lost their show but should they be fired? as the president visits michigan today, a labor bat sl brewing. how union opposition plans to turn on the heat with voting on the bill expected to start tomorrow. we'll have the latest on that. but be sure to check out the "news nation" tumblr page. ally bank. why they have a raise your rate cd. tonight our guest, thomas sargent. nobel laureate in economics, and one of the most cited economists in the world. professor sargent, can you tell me what cd rates will be in two years? no. if he can't, no one can. that's why ally has a raise your rate cd.
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this reduced sodium soup says it may help lower cholesterol, how does it work? you just have to eat it as part of your heart healthy diet. step 1. eat the soup. all those veggies and beans, that's what may help lower your cholesterol and -- well that's easy [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. starts with arthritis pain and a choice. take tylenol or take aleve, the #1 recommended pain reliever by orthopedic doctors. just two aleve can keep pain away all day. back to the news. welcome back. president obama is in michigan today where republican governor rick snyder, comes a day before the governor is expected to sign in to law a controversial right to work bill that would prohibit having to join a union as a condition of employment. unions have been protesting the
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bill since it was introduced last week and they're planning a massive rally at the state capitol tomorrow. now, the governor invited be didn't accompany the president to today's event at the diamler plant represented by the uaw. the white house made it clear position immediately after the legislation was announced saying, quote, president obama has long opposed so-called right to work laws and he continues to oppose them now. joining us now mark murray. so mark, we are awaiting the president to talk about the fiscal cliff. we know that's a part of his remarks in michigan but as i understand it from the notes we have resooceived uaw, huge bann. the president greeted with the jackets. all of this the timing so interesting. >> really interesting, tamron, and auunavoidable for the president. i'm sure they didn't know there's yet another labor battle in the midwest and i think the bottom line of the entire right to work battle seeing is yet another labor battle that you
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are having in the midwest. in 2011, it was in wisconsin and ohio. now, it's in michigan. and what is going on is that when republicans particularly when there's a republican governor and republican state legislator they're going hard right at organized labor and also been a very chief ally of the democratic party. and so far republicans have been able to mess with organized labor and score political points in doing so. >> we have a map actually up with 23 right to work states right now and it was so interesting, mark, that the former governor of michigan john engler on with chuck todd and discussed the right to work prospect and when he was leaving the state. >> it was something that we always talked about but it was -- it was at that time in the region there were no right to work states. indiana moving to right to work status changed the game in the midwest. now your neighbor is able to compete dlimpbt r differently. >> i want to take the audience
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to michigan. president obama discussing the fiscal cliff. let's listen in. >> make sure your kids can go to a good school. make sure they can aspire to whatever they want to be. that idea is what built america. that's the idea that built michigan. that's the idea that's at the heart of the economic plan i've been talking about all yearlong on the campaign trail. i want to give more americans the chance to earn the skills that businesses are looking for right now and give our kids the kind of education they need to succeed in the 21st century. i want to make sure america leads the world in research and technology and clean energy. i want to put people back to work rebuilding our roads and our bridges and our schools. that's how we grow an economy. i want us to bring down the
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deficits but i want to do in it a balanced, responsible way. and i want to reward -- i want a tax code that rewards businesses and manufacturers like detroit diesel right here creating jobs right here in redford, right here in michigan, right here in the united states of america. that's where we need to go. that's the country we need to build. and when it comes to bringing up manufacturing back to america, that's why i'm here today. since 1938, detroit diesel has been turns out some of the best engines in the world. over all those years, generations of redford workers have walked through these doors.
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not just to punch a clock. not just to pick up a paycheck. not just to build an engine. but to build a middle class life for their families. to earn a shot at the american dream. for seven and a half decades, through good times and bad, through revolutions in technology that sent a lot of good jobs, manufacturing jobs overseas, men and women like you, your parents, maybe even your grandparents have done your part to build up america's manufacturing strength. that's something you can all be proud of. and now, you're writing a new, proud chapter to that history. eight years ago you starting building axles here alongside the engines. that meant more work. that meant more jobs. so you start seeing products,
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more products stamped with those three proud words. made in america. today, diamler's announcing a new $120 million investment in to this plant creating 115 good new union jobs building transmissions and turbochargers right here in redford. 115 good new jobs right here in this plant. making things happen. that is great for the plant. it's great for this community. but it's also good for american manufacturing. soon you guys will be building all the key parts that go in to powering a heavy duty truck all at the same facility. nobody else in america's doing that. nobody else in north america is
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doing that. and by putting everything together in one place, under one roof, diamler engineers can design each part so it works better with the others. that means greater fuel efficiency for your trucks. it means greater savings for your customers. that's a big deal. and it's just the latest example of diamler's leadership on this issue. last year i was proud to have your support when we announced the first-ever national fuel efficiency standards for commercial trucks which is going to help save consumers money and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. that's good news. but here's the other reason why what you guys are doing, what diamler is doing is so important. for a long time companies weren't always making those kinds of investments in the united states. they weren't always investing in
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american workers. they certainly weren't willing to make them in the u.s. auto industry. a few years ago it was on the verge of collapse. gm, chrysler were all on the brink of failure and if they failed, the suppliers and distributors getting the business from those countries, they would have died off, too. even ford could have gone down. production halted. factories shuttered. once proud companies shopped up, sold off for scraps. and all of you, the men and women who built these companies with your own hands, would have been hung out to dry. and everybody in this community that depends on you, restaurant owners, storekeepers, bartenders. they -- their livelihoods would have been at stake, too. so i wasn't about to let that
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happen. i placed my bet on american workers. we bet on american ingenuity. i'd make that same bet any day of the week. three and a half years later that bet is paying off. this industry's added over 250,000 new jobs. american auto industry is back. and companies like diamler know you're still a smart bet. they could have made their investments somewhere else but they didn't. and if you ask them whether it was a tough call, they tell you it wasn't even close. so the word's going out all around the world. if you want to find the best workers in the world, you want to find the best factories in the world, you want to build the best cars or trucks or any other product in the world, you should invest in the united states of america. this is the place to do it.
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so, you're starting to see the competitive balance is tipping a little bit. over the past few years, it's become more expensive to do business in countries like china. our workers have become more productive. our energy costs are starting to go down here in the united states. and we still have the largest market. so when you factor in everything, it makes sense to invest here. in america. >> we're listening in as president obama addresses workers right outside of detroit at a diamler factory. i want to bring in mark murray again to at least highlight a little bit of what the president discussed. we know, mark, in michigan is there's a labor showdown right now and the president referred to good union workers, i believe that was the phrasing there, but nevertheless, earlier in the day, the administration said the president supports the unions, uaw but there's a showdown and
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supposed to come to a head tomorrow. >> that's right. governor rick snyder of michigan expected to sign in to law the legislation that would make michigan a right to work state. president obama in his remarks there didn't come out exples sitly against that legislation as the white house has done before but, tamron, you are right. he actually talked about good union jobs. certainly, chatting with a lot of having the united autoworkers as a backdrop is sending a message he's on their side if he didn't sy that in the remarks but another explosive labor battle in the midwest. in michigan is the newest battleground there. >> mark, thank you very much. more now on the heavy duty negotiating taking place over the fiscal cliff. that's part of the reason that the president is in michigan bringing his message to the people and yesterday the president and house speaker john boehner brought their message to one another. the first one on one in more than three weeks.
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will there be a deal to include what's called serious entitlement reform and cuts? joining me now congresswoman bass of california. it's a pleasure to have you on again. >> thanks, thanks for having me on, tamron. >> absolutely. the president is in michigan. i want to read what senator dick durbin said on entitlements and reform. let me play it. >> i do believe there should be means testing and those of us with the higher income and retirement should pay more. that can be part of the solution but when you talk about raising the medicare eligibility age, there's a key question. what happens to the early retiree and the gap in coverage between the workplace and medicare? >> what are your concerns regarding entitlement reform? >> well, my main concern is that what i think is unacceptable is if we were to break the guarantee that the u.s. has had with the population for many, many decades and that's after you hit a certain age, your health care will be covered. and so, my concern is if we were
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to just across the board raise the age, you know, life expectancy depending on where you're talking about is different in different ages so i would agree
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what i think is going to happen and what should happen is the house needs to take up the senate bill that will maintain tax breaks for 98% of the u.s. public and 97% of small businesses. that's the business we need to get done before the end of the year and then talk about changes and other changes and other savings to do next year and make a strong commitment to do that. >> congresswoman bass, thank you. >> thanks verying if me. >> absolutely. the sport's decision to take up same-sex marriage cases putting the pressure on the
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the supreme court's decision to take on two same-sex marriage cases given activists hope there's finally federal law, federal right to marry. but while the obama administration has made the position clear in one of those cases, one involving the defensive marriage act is silent on the other which takes on california's prop 8. according to politico, the court's decision to take the case puts pressure on the president saying, quote, obama never rejected the notion that the u.s. constitution could protect the right of gays and lesbians to marry but repeated
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description of the issue of one best handled by the states seems to undercut the idea that the supreme court should declare a federal right to same-sex marriage. joining me is former white house adviser to president obama. also, quoted multiple times in this particular article i was referencing, richard. thank you for joining me. in the article they quote you as saying i think the federalizes the issue much more quickly than the white house would have liked and may force them to take a position earlier than they would have liked. >> right. well, we remember back it was just last may when president obama said that he personally supported the right of americans, same-sex couples, to marry. that was a huge deal. first time a president had everyone done that. the president has been a real leader on gay rights. persons more things than any president before him but he's not said that the u.s. constitution guarantees that right to everyone and every state and because, of his background as a constitutional law scholar, where he stands on
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this and the justice department stands on this is now very important because the supreme court has said we're going to decide this. >> what about those who say the president now should just wait? is that an appropriate reaction or is that what some conservatives would call leading from behind as they've critic e criticized him in other parts of the foreign policy, for example, with? >> i wouldn't call it leading from behind. he's been a true leader. but now that the supreme court has said we're going to take up this issue of whether or not the federal constitution guarantees same-sex couples a right to marry, i think we need to hear from the justice department and the justice department will say whatever the president tells them to say. >> i've heard from the justice department on doma and not with prop 8 and makes it all the more curious. >> the justice department has, again, had a leadership position on overturning the defensive marriage act but if you take the
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legal position they have advocated in the defensive marriage act cases and you apply it to a situation like proposition 8, all of those anti-gay laws go by the wayside and really a question of them taking the arguments they made in one case and making them again in this other case. >> i want to read from an associated press article on the fear and hope some have regarding gay marriage. gay marriage supporters see 41 reasons to fret over the supreme court's decision to take up the case of california's man on same sex issues and nine states allow partners to marry or will soon. 41 states do not. of those, 30 have written gay marriage bans into their state's constitution. >> i'm not that worried and the reason is because i think that the supreme court would have only taken these cases if they thought that they were ripe for a decision that moves the country forward so i think that their only question is, are we going to get a decision that moves us incrementally forward
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or are we going to get a decision that's historic on the nature -- on the level of like brown versus board of education? >> how likely do you believe we'll hear from the president before the supreme court makes a decision? >> i think we will because i think they understand that they're going to have to say something eastbound if they don't say something in a brief and a written memorandum. when the case is argued before the supreme court, the solicitor general is asked what do you think about these same-sex marriage cases so i think they'll get that and we're going to hear from the president. it may be slightly nuanced like he's sometimes very good at doing but i think everybody knows where the president stands on this. it is difficult to say that in these 30 states where there are anti-gay marriage laws that all of those state constitutions should be overwritten but that's where we're headed. >> thank you. great pleasure having you on. coming up -- >> and the thought that we may have played a part in that is --
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it's gut wrenching. >> well, the deejays behind the prank call made to the hospital where kate middleton was being treated, they've now responded to the death of a nurse there. they've lost their show but is that enough? should they be fired? it is our gut check. south korean rapper psy performs for the president after reports of anti-american lyrics in his rap music. [ woman ] dear cat, your hair mixes with pollen and dust. i get congested. but now, with zyrtec-d®, i have the proven allergy relief of zyrtec®, plus a powerful decongestant. zyrtec-d® lets me breath freer, so i can love the air. [ male announcer ] zyrtec-d®. behind the pharmacy counter. no prescription needed.
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there's a lot going on today. here are some things we thought you should know. president obama shook hands with south korean internet sensation psy who performed last night at the annual christmas in washington christmas. that despite the controversy surrounding the rapper's anti-american song lyrics.
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2004 concert. the song called for the killing of american soldiers fighting in iraq with psy apologizing for the lyrics. former house majority leader and tea party group leader dick armey blaming the republican party and candidates saying, quote, stupid things responsible for the loss in november. he said leaders did not fulfill the obligation to teach candidates not to make inflammatory remarks. today's "gut check" on two australian deejays on the prank call being blamed to the death of the nurse who answered the call. they're speaking out saying they're sorry. their show is canceled but is that enough? should they be fired? what is your gut telling you? you can go to to vote. that does it for us. thank you for joining us. boo! i am the ghost of meals past.
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