tv Morning Joe MSNBC December 13, 2012 3:00am-6:00am PST
"morning joe" starts right now. ♪ these are my streets ♪ the only life i've ever known ♪ ♪ who says you can't go home ♪ who says >> look at that. a wonderful, wonderful concert. >> and it's still going on. >> it is still going on. amazing. >> i actually got a tweet in a couple hours ago. >> yeah? >> it says, "axl rose is going to be coming on stage in eight hours." >> the set, by the way, looks like they went there and came directly here. >> anybody go? >> no. i don't look like that. >> i do. >> mccartney hit the stage i think after 1:00. >> come on. in the morning? >> there was a nirvana reunion, and mccartney was the headliner. >> what are you doing? >> the rest of the band. can you bring that over? >> what is this? >> i was up all night. so here's paul mccartney. mccartney and the surviving
members of nirvana. of course, kurt cobain passed away in 1994. there's dave grohl. they played a new song. mccartney said they were recording, and he looked around in the studio. and he said oh, my god, what is this? who are these guys? and somebody whispered, said it's a nirvana reunion, and you're kurt. that's exactly what he was. last night possibly the greatest assemblage of aging and infirmed british rock stars in the history of rock 'n' roll! from the who to the stones to roger waters. they were all there. mccartney. somebody said that roger -- or that roger daltrey's stomach was a cross between somebody that did yoga and somebody that carved a pumpkin. it was a remarkable night and they raised all that money, mika, unbelievable amounts for sandy. >> very nice. that's wonderful. >> it was a jersey reunion.
>> it was. chris christie. >> springsteen. bon jovi and chris christie. >> yeah. >> and jon stewart. >> and jon stewart, yes, the quartet. there's clapton, eddie vedder. it really was a remarkable -- >> in tickets alone, they raised $30 million. not bad. so we'll have more of that coming throughout the show. no, you will not have that. >> i know. >> come on, joe, you were doing so well. what is wrong with you? that's gross. that's basically -- >> that looks so good. >> -- there is nothing good about that for you. >> fight the power. fight the power. >> that is disgusting. >> this hurts me? >> yeah, you are hurting your body. >> are you hurting? does it hurt? how's it feel going down? >> feel the pain. >> let me -- let me listen to my body. >> now you will develop a craving for it. >> you're right. >> every day. >> and i've got to admit, it
doesn't hurt. >> no, that's not worth it. >> i'm listening to my body. >> these are not worth it. >> it's good. >> mika! oh, mika! >> that is a problem. >> hostility. >> pass me that trash can right now. >> i just dumped on them. you can't have them anymore, and they're gross. i'm sorry. >> you look like you're in severe pain. >> all those doughnuts should be eradicated off the face of the shirt. >> shut up. stop it. stop it. >> feeding them into your growing belly like winnie the pooh. >> hold on. i see one on the floor that survived. >> what's wrong with you? you're not going to eat that. >> go ahead. good morning. it's thursday, december 13th. with us on set -- >> don't talk with your mouth full. >> former treasury official and "morning joe" economic analyst,
steve rattner. >> hold on. let me wash it down with some goo. >> i mean, you all are fit. what? why can't you follow suit? >> it hurts so good. we've got msnbc political analyst and visiting professor at nyu, former democratic congressman and all-around good guy, harold ford jr. >> when would you ever eat a munchkin? >> i'm at peace here. president of the council on foreign relations, richard haass, and msnbc analyst and former chairman of the republican national committee -- >> very fit. >> -- very much with me on the battle of the munchkins, michael steele. >> absolutely. pass the doughnuts. >> we start with syria, a country coming apart at the seams. president obama a couple days ago making a fairly remarkable statement that we are now with the opposition despite the fact that we don't know exactly who the opposition is. >> we're with the oppositions in the plural.
it's a very splintered opposition. coalition's almost too good of a word. the united states has thrown in its political lot with them. militarily things are beginning to tilt increasingly in the direction of the opposition against the government. we saw now the government is shooting off scud missiles, old ballistic missiles which are essentially terror weapons. you shoot them off, you don't know where they'll come down. some come down in civilian areas. they're not militarily significant, but this is the beginning of a slow end game. >> richard, i was just going to ask, what is assad's end game, and should he not be contacting the russians right now saying in russian, guys, get me the hell out of here? >> that day is going to come. the russians can accelerate that day. the day the russians tell him it's over, that will have a tremendous psychological effect. >> putin is a kgb guy. he knows he's not going to survive. he knows the next government will be hostile towards russia if they don't move quickly. >> exactly right. one day they'll make that calculation and they figure they'll get positive reaction for it because that will be seen
as a decisive change in the context. it's a question of when and not if that happens. this has all taken longer than a lot of people thought, but it's still happening. >> wow. let's get to politics here at home and the fiscal cliff. one thing we could probably agree with here, the american people would love to see a deal before new year's day. that's according to a new nbc/"wall street journal" poll. in fact, a majority of both democrats and republicans say they would like their leaders to compromise even if it means giving ground on long-held party positions. >> wow, look at that. >> so you know, at this point, what does anybody have to lose but to come together and make a deal? expectations are in check with respondents equally divided, 48%-48% on whether a deal will actually get done. if there's no agreement, 56% say both sides will be to blame. 24% say it will be the republicans' fault, while 19% will point the finger at president obama. >> again, let's stop and freeze on that number again. this is a number that is borne
not out of what's been happening over the past couple weeks but what's been happening over the past couple years. the republicans have damaged their brand in such a way that the benefit of the doubt, steve rattner, will always lie with the president and the democrats until the republicans change that dynamic. >> but this is a different number than the last time we saw this poll. remember the last time we saw this poll, they were really hitting the republicans. i think 53% were blaming the republicans, and about half that many, the democrats. and now it looks like it's shifted more toward an equal blame scenario. >> which is a positive, i think, for the country. >> yep. >> the more both sides are liable for what may go wrong, the better chances we have for getting a deal. >> i admit, it must have been the sugar rush to my head, mr. chairman, i misread the poll, i was associating the 56%. thank goodness there are some people here that live right. mr. chairman, that is, if you look at this poll, that is good news for the republicans. a poll that was out earlier this week did have the number up in the 50s. >> yeah.
>> and so what do the republicans do? >> well, i think the republicans continue to make the argument for putting on the table some spending cuts. we want to see what the real numbers are. what are the priorities of the administration when it comes to entitlement reform? and i think that poll reflects sort of a change that's going to put some pressure on the white house now. because, you know, you can't get there and beat the drum saying oh, you know, this is all going to fall on the republicans' head. now it's beginning to lap back on the president and the democrats. >> and again, i'm not doing the president's bidding because i'm with the republicans. in fact, i want him to be a lot tougher on holding a firm line if they don't get the spending cuts. republicans need to be so careful. they need to be so cautious. again, i'm not talking about substance. i'm talking about on style. i'm talking about how they handle it. >> absolutely. we're still on our own rhetorical cliff when it comes to this issue. i think by and large, you're still looking at 24% of the people that are polled saying
yeah, this is still, you know, a big part of this is going to be republicans' problem if this doesn't go through. but i think in terms of momentum for the nature of the debate, the american people are putting pressure now equally on both parties to get this done. that's reflected throughout the poll. and i think that's going to move the timetable up, and we'll probably see something, you know, realistically in play before christmas and voted on by the new year. >> well, that's what the american people want. richard haass, you've had a lot of dealings with certainly the foreign relations context with negotiating. compare how the president was doing a week ago with how he's doing now. >> two things. one, on the president, i think when he staked out the position at the beginning, it didn't create a context where the republicans could meet him. it looked more like a way of casting blame. the narrowing of the polls, though, i think and we're beginning to see it in the president's movement, he's beginning to give something. there's a sense now of a negotiation dynamic. so it seems that the white house has moved away from pinning the responsibility on the republicans and slightly more towards getting a deal.
one other thing that's adding to it, mike duke, the head of walmart, earlier this week. >> impressive guy. >> because of what walmart does, he has his finger on the economic pulse as well as anybody. he said 15% of the shoppers coming into walmart said that they were going to spend less going into christmas than they would have otherwise because of the fiscal cliff. this uncertainty, this overhang, was having a tremendous impact. that will also put pressure on the white house. the last thing you need is people underspending going into the holidays. >> their customers are those that will be primarily affected by the tax increase, a $2,000 average increase. i would imagine the majority of walmart customers would feel that immediately. >> working middle class. >> they are. steve rattner, walmart really focuses on what politicians call walmart moms. and they and other retailers are seeing in all of their internal data that their shoppers, their consumers, are very nervous.
consumer confidence drives what happens between now and the end of the year. and this will have a major impact on the economy, as you showed us in your charts last time, if the white house and congress fail to make a deal. >> yeah, and you're seeing it elsewhere as well. i think business is very clearly not hiring as many people, holding back on investment. ben bernanke said yesterday, and i think he's a pretty straight-up guy and calls it as he sees it, this is beginning to affect the economy. two other points. one, this republican rift that the president hasn't spelled out his spending cuts is simply not true. the president has actually -- you may not agree with him -- >> where's he cutting and how much is he cutting? >> in his february budget, he went through all the components of his $3.6 trillion plan. >> where do they come from? >> and they come from $350 billion from the entitlements program, $250 billion from other programs. $1.6 trillion of tax increases. and so on. and so he has actually spelled it out. look, the fundamental issue -- >> you say that's up to 3 -- i'm
trying -- and again, i'm not cross-examining you, i'm trying to engage in simple math. $1.6 trillion -- >> $1.6 trillion in tax -- >> this looks like $600 billion in spending cuts from discretionary and mandatory. >> 350 from entitlements, 250 from other stuff. >> 600. >> right. >> that gets us to $1.2 trillion. where's the other? >> 2.2. >> 2.2. >> you've got about $1.2 trillion of cuts already enacted in 2011 that everybody agrees should be counted. this is not phony math. this is real math. you can add those back in. >> should you really, though? >> yeah. >> if you're running a business, do you add that back in when the government has added more debt since 2011 than the amount of those cuts? >> you know, you have to start somewhere. and everybody's measuring off of where we were before the budget control act, before that trillion dollars of cuts were enacted. look, even i, you know, i consider myself a deficit hawk, agree with that math.
>> you'd add that in. >> i agree with that math. the point is the president has specified what he wants to do. you may not like it or agree with it. i think what's happening here is really on the republican side. the real problem is on the republican side. boehner cannot get a majority of his caucus to agree to raise rates by any amount. that seems to be what's happening. and so we're in a stalemate. the president -- i don't believe the president will accept a deal that includes some increase in rates. it doesn't have to be 39.6%. it has to be something. but boehner cannot corral his troops to get there. >> michael steele -- >> yeah, you know that. >> -- speak to that because i've said clearly and haley barbour has said clearly, if i know there are going to be real cuts in medicare -- >> right. >> -- real cuts in social security cuts to sustain those programs, then we can talk about a deal. we can talk about 37%. >> absolutely, joe. >> we can talk a lot of different things. >> we're on the exact same page there, and that's exactly what i
was referencing when i made the statement that i did about what the republicans are expecting. i appreciate steve, you know, rattling off $320 billion in entitlement cuts, but is that in medicare and medicaid? is it raising the eligibility age? is it means testing? how are those cuts manifested? are they real? and steve, you know very well that in washington when you're talking about obligating a future congress to make cuts, that's not a deal. and that's the same hook that republicans have always gotten hung on in previous negotiations with democrats when rate increases are on the table. so republicans are saying, look, we'll go 37%. we may even talk about 39%, but we want to see real cuts that are right now, not something that you're going to obligate the congress of 2020 to do because that's not going to happen. >> but that's fine, michael, but that's not what they're saying. >> that is what they're saying. >> no, no, no. boehner wrote a letter in plain english, typed it out, no rate increases, period.
not no rate increases -- >> come on. steve, like that means something? >> hold on. so he wrote that letter. the president said we're not going to move from 39%. the president -- >> no, he did not say that. >> let me finish. the president subsequently said we can meet them halfway, and boehner did not rule out a 37% number. >> no, he briefly didn't rule it out, and then he ruled it out. >> it's still on the table. >> tell people what you're saying. instead of 39.6%, we would raise the top rate to 37%. and then the second rate would be at 35%. currently the 35, 33, so we jump to 37, 35. >> right, you've heard boehner say it, barbour say it, coburn say it, chambliss say it. you've heard a lot of republicans come out and say we will do this, but we need something in return. don't expect john boehner to be leading the charge rhetorically when he's got to figure out how to pull the majority along with him at the end of the day. >> let's hear the latest from them.
>> really quickly, though -- >> uh-huh. >> -- it's important. it's important. >> yeah. >> to let people know, reports from inside the republican caucus suggest that john boehner has the power to pull a majority of the majority now. if a deal is done. >> exactly. >> but i would be the first to strongly discourage any republican for voting for any increase on any taxes unless they put their cuts on the table. >> right. >> same with democrats. i agree with you. >> one thing that could embolden the president during these negotiations is his job approval number, which is at 53%. the highest approval rating he's gotten since the poll was taken in january of 2011. republicans did not fare as well. only 30% of those polled have a positive view of the gop. the lowest for republicans in a year. 44% had a favorable view of the democrats. >> okay. that's the number that we were talking about earlier, mika, as
far as the scar tissue from two years of chaos. >> there was intense conversation on the phone between president obama and speaker boehner. >> how do we know about this? >> well, that's -- >> why -- >> -- republican insiders tell this to nbc news. >> it's not helpful. >> okay. just sayin'. >> i'm saying it's not helpful. the fact that there are intense conversations on the phone and we know about those tense conversations. >> you want to hear from john painer? >> sure. >> okay. he says that he was hinting that the sides were not close on this. do we have the boehner sound bite? okay, roll it. >> the president and i had a dleliberate call yesterday, and we spoke honestly and openly about the differences that we face. but the president's called for $1.4 trillion worth of revenue. that cannot pass the house or the senate. >> we can bring a bill to the floor that the republicans don't
have to vote for except for 25 of them. i had to do it as speaker. do you know what it was like for me to bring a bill to the floor to fund the war in iraq? so it's tough. but you have to do it. so is the point that you don't want to put your members on the spot, figure it out. we did. figure it out. >> you figure it out, richard, when both sides are dealing with each other in good faith. and i think it's important to note that the president was at $1.6 trillion. he's at $1.4 trillion. that ain't nothing. i think that requires john boehner, if we're playing in good faith, to publicly go from 800 to 1. send a message and have the battles that we were talking about. michael was talking about. how are you going to cut? where's it going to come from? it will happen, i think. >> it will happen. the details -- and we're obviously moving towards something like do the math, $1.2
trillion in revenues, the mix still has to get more specific. and i think the ratio between entitlements and discretionary spending is probably the biggest issue, and that has to get set. it will ultimately get done. i think the real question is whether it gets done before the end of the year or whether it spills over early in the new year and markets have a reaction which spur it to actually happen. i think it's really at the moment more a question of when and not if you get it. and it's still going to be small. i actually think -- and maybe steve disagrees -- no matter what gets done, it's not going to take this entire issue off the table. we'll come back to it in february with the question of the debt ceiling. and more important, all of 2013, this issue times several is going to be in the center because whatever scale they deal with now won't be enough. >> richard, you said there's a big divide between discretionary spending and entitlement spending. the folks at home that don't follow it closely, entitlement spending, obviously, social security, medicare, medicaid. on the other side, you've got discretionary spending,
education, transportation, r&d. >> defense. >> defense. all of these things. >> which accounts for about a trillion dollars of the budget every year. we've got less than that. >> of course, the long-term struggle is with entitlements. i think that's one of the greatest differences where we cut with republicans. i know we have to cut from entitlements because that's what bankrupts us. i know we have to cut from defense. but i'm concerned about r&d. i'm concerned about transportation. i'm concerned about education. i'm concerned about cutting in all of these areas that make china -- give china a bigger advantage as we move forward that give our global competitors a bigger advantage. that's what really concerns me. >> two quick observations. if you're in business and you're told we've got to make changes at our budget and you look at 6%, 15% of your budget, 9% of your budget, you've got to make cuts, you look at the 60% first and say where can we make
manufacture she's cuts. talk about not endangering our ability to compete and win going forward, you don't want to cut those areas as steve has talked about eloquently many times, there are advantages which means you have to look at entitlements. and i think to michael's point, i think there's credit to that. two, i like the fact that boehner now is in a stronger position with his caucus because if indeed they find a deal, that means he can win a majority of his people over. i like the fact that nancy pelosi's in a strong position with her caucus. so the pieces are not only coming together substantively, they're coming together politically as well which means we find ourselves closer and closer to getting to a point where a big -- or a deal can pass, will get us through the year and get us to fight another day which means entitlement and tax reform. >> we need entitlement reform and fax reform. michael, i want to make sure you agree with me. if you don't, please let me know. we used to cut a good bit from domestic discretionary spending.
i think now, though, the budget clearly, it's the entitlement programs that are going to bankrupt us. everybody says it from the congressional budget office to the president's people to peterson's foundation to everybody, concord coalition. and for republicans that are thinking you know, we're not going to make the tough choices on entitlement spending. instead we're going to cut education, transportation. >> right. >> r&d. that's like parents saying, you know what? we really need to renovate our kitchen. we want a bigger kitchen because we watch the food network. it's cool they've got those islands and they can chop things up. >> make doughnuts. >> and make doughnuts, do all these things in the kitchen. >> hanging pots. >> we want to expand our kitchen. that's what we want to do. we can't cut from the kitchen fund. so johnny has to go to college. but maybe he can put off college for a couple of years. >> right. >> we're not going to invest in our children's future in college so we can renovate the kitchen.
>> well, that's actually -- >> and unfortunately for those on both sides, republicans and democrats who say we're going to cut discretionary spending, but we're not going to touch the mandatory stuff. that's what they're doing. they're cutting education. they're playing into the chinese hands. they're cutting r&d. they're playing into the chinese hands. they're cutting transportation. they're playing into all of our competitors' hands over the next century. it seems so shortsighted. >> i agree 100%. it's a matter of priorities. we live in an age where you don't have to choose between guns and but he ater anymore. it's a matter of priorities. you start with the heavy lift first because that's where the chunk of your challenge is. and the discretionary spending, you look at that after you take care of those issues because then you can prioritize much better. and i think that's what you need to do. coming up, we'll continue this conversation. fantastic one. coming up in just a few minutes, chairman of the american
conservative union, al cardenas, will be here. "hardball's" chris matthews. it was with alex talking in my ear. i like hearing from alex, too. chris matthews will join us, nbc news political director, chuck todd, and eve ensler and mike allen with the "politico playbook." first, bill care ipz with a check on the forecast. >> mika, are you hoping for a white christmas? >> yes, absolutely. >> i'm starting to get those e-mails. i should call them complaint e-mails. doesn't look good for areas of coastal new england or mid-atlantic. rain headed your way in the next four or five days. that's probably about it. let's show you the weather maps and get you out the door. it's cold in the burbs, nice in the city, similar to yesterday morning. you can bring that winter coat and gloves with you, and that will be about it. later this afternoon with a ton of sunshine. temperatures once again get into the 40s. even in areas of the suburbs, we should be at least low to mid-40s. so a very nice december thursday
afternoon. let's talk about boston. you're one area that's snow starved. it doesn't look like any is headed your way with temperatures for highs in the 40s right through sunday and monday. this next storm should primarily be rain for you. you may get a little mix on sunday, but i don't think it's going to accumulate. we'll have to watch that football game sunday night, too, with the patriots and the 49ers. temperatures across the middle of the country looking a little bit on the cool side, but a lot better than it was. what a beautiful forecast. look at kansas city today. you're back up to 55. dallas at 61. only the southwest, los angeles to phoenix, could have some showers, maybe a stray thunderstorm. but for all your travel plans today, we look really, really nice. empire state building, beautiful green. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. we're at walmart with the simmons family.
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"morning papers." we'll start with "the wall street journal." the national counterterrorism center has been given the green light by the white house to examine government files of u.s. citizens for possible criminal behavior. even if they are not suspected of a crime. the u.s. terror -- >> what? >> yeah. i said that. the u.s. terror agency -- >> the next thing you're going to tell me is the fbi can go into our e-mails if we know somebody who doesn't like an e-mail that she's gotten, and then they can open other people's e-mails and then have suspicion of sexual activity and therefore open another person's e-mails and then report it to other government agencies. that will never happen. >> yeah. >> this is insanity. >> not in america. >> you know, this is harold ford. you went to law school. i went to law school. this is the proverbial slippery slope that our constitutional law professors warned us about. >> really? i see. you don't like the slippery slope when it's inconvenient to
you. the u.s. terror agency -- >> i don't even know what that means. you just happen to disagree with me. >> harboring some hostility here? >> no, i think it's interesting. we've had some interesting debates about the slippery slope. on every level. i'm not going to -- >> you argue against this kind of stuff when republicans do it. it's interesting how this will be explained. i want to understand it. >> here's the deal. u.s. terror agency can acquire entire databases ranging from flight travel to families hosting foreign exchange students and can keep the belonging for innocent citizens for five years to analyze it for a pattern of suspicious behavior. >> all things being equal, there's a pendulum here, and having it swing slightly more in the direction allowing a slight invasion of privacy of individuals in order to protect the society, having it move slightly is okay. but in order to do that, the fbi and the government have to
demonstrate day in, day out that they are responsible stewards of private information. >> right. >> and that's where seriously the whole petraeus thing is so worrisome. if you're going to try to say we've got to sacrifice a little bit in order for the collective good, you've got to prove to us that you're responsible. and that's a big issue. >> and they did not. in the entire petraeus matter, that was a disgrace. you know what? i'll write a big check to the aclu at the end of the year if they will fight this thing more. i mean, conservative and liberal civil libertarians need to come together. >> all right. >> it's really worrisome. >> "the wall street journal" -- >> you know what my professor would call a slippery slope. >> "the wall street journal." the federal reserve is taking unprecedented action as it puts an emphasis on job creation. chairman ben bernanke says long-term interest rates will remain near zero until the unemployment rate drops below 6.5%. the central bank also says it will continue to spend $45
billion a month on long-term government bonds but will now buy them outright. and from "the buffalo news," agricultural industry analysts are warning the price of milk could double if no action is taken on the so-called dairy cliff. >> is that a slippery slope, too? >> it is a dairy cliff. the farm bill continues to stale out in congress. without its passage, the nation will revert to policies dating back to the 1940s. products containing milk could jump up dramatically. coming up next, where in the world is vice president joe biden? that's the question that, of course, all of americans wake up to every morning. the man with the capitol connection is actually being left out of fiscal cliff negotiations. we're going to ask mike allen next why next in the "politico playbook." for those with visions of doing this...
all right. a live look at capitol hill in washington, d.c. dark still at 36 past the hour this morning. with us now, chief white house correspondent for "politico," mike allen here with the "morning playbook." we begin with where in the world is joe biden? mike. >> well, good morning, mika. in the last fiscal disaster
negotiations, vice president biden was front and center, having those meetings at blair house up on the hill, working his connections. this year he's taking a much lower-key role partly because the senate is a little bit of a bystander this time. this is very much an obama/speaker boehner/house negotiation but also because the president has a lot more political capital this time. last time the democrats were coming off the 2010 midterms. this time the president is made of political capital. they say that vice president biden will be a part of selling whatever deal comes together, but he's been less visible in crafting it. >> let me ask, mike, are you surprised by the latest nbc news/"wall street journal" poll that shows the american public splitting blame on this debt deal possibly going down? >> i can tell you republicans have felt this for a while.
i've felt the spine of republicans stiffen over the last couple weeks. had they started this -- and you and i talked about this -- they were ready to cave. the leaders knew that it was just a matter of when and how. and as time went by, partly because of what they saw as overreach by white house negotiations, republicans started to say, you know, maybe there is some up side for us in this. and so that's why i think this has been such a slow process. and that's partly because people just see washington not working. and the president is in charge. poll after poll, we see people don't know who boehner is. so when washington is seen as not working by the country, that's not good for the president. >> all right. mike allen, thank you so much. >> thank you, mike. >> we appreciate it. we talked about ben bernanke beforehand in a news article. explain something to me, because you know i'm a simple man, got simple tastes. i just love running through the fields barefooted, you know. >> eating doughnuts.
>> eating doughnuts. eating munchkins after a cool spring rain. but anyway, i don't understand -- you like that, harold? i don't know where this comes from. i think it's a sugar rush from the munchkins. but anyway. i don't understand how the entire chattering class, the elites, all the economists, the entire world decided they were going to beat the hell out of alan greenspan for providing cheap money over a decade. how could he do that? how could he do that after the long-term capital collapse? how could he do that after the collapse in asia? how could you do that after the dotcom bust? but alan greenspan never did what this fed chairman is doing. i mean, he's taken greenspan's belief that cheap money will help americans through tough times to an absurd new level.
>> well, he's certainly taken it to a new level. we can discuss whether it's absurd or not. alan greenspan never had to face 8% unemployment and 2% economic growth for such a long period of time. and no sign of inflation. >> but if what alan greenspan did was so disastrous, as we heard in 2009, why is it that the subsequent fed chairman does more of the same and he's getting praised in financial circles? >> first of all, alan greenspan provided cheap money on other occasions, and he's gotten praise for it. after the 1987 stock market crash, for example, he put liquidity in the system and kept the economy moving. i think it's a question what are the facts and circumstances? and right now you have an economy with very little inflation and high unemployment. and i believe the fed's job to do what it can to make it grow. the criticism of alan greenspan over monetary policy -- i don't want to get back into old
history -- i think is not exactly on point. i think the problem the fed had during that period was aregulat monetary policy, in other words, it wasn't watching what was going on in subprime and all these banks were doing as much of a question of how much money it was putting into the system. >> anybody here worried about cheap money? >> no. >> anybody worried about the economy turning around quickly and us being slammed by inflation? >> no, i'm much more worried about us not getting our fiscal house in order being slammed by the bond market. >> harold? >> i share richard's position. >> mika, what are you highlighting? >> i can't even believe what i'm reading. >> please, i hope it has zbulgts nothing to do with food. >> it does, i'm sorry. when we come back, chair of the american conservative union, al cardenas joins us. keep it here on "morning joe." hey, look! a shooting star!
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here with us now, chairman of the american conservative union, al cardenas. and al and a group of more than 100 conservatives recently sent a letter to congressional republicans writing in part this. "in the house, the nation elected in 2012 one of the largest republican majorities in the past 100 years. you have a mandate to fight for conservative principles that is arguably much broader than the one that narrowly re-elected president barack obama claims to have for his leftist agenda. if republicans cave in now when it really counts, next time you will be baeker, because your conservative base will be outraged. many who worked hard to elect you in the past will never lift a finger for you again."
>> those are tough words! >> you know the old bob novak, he used to say that republicans were put on earth to cut taxes. and if they don't, they have no purpose. >> no purpose, yeah. >> that was bob novak. you know, all of a sudden we're faced with a set of circumstances where we're talking about cutting taxes on spending, and now we've got stuff on the table to react to, and conservatives don't feel comfortable with what's on the table. >> so what is it that conservatives would like to have happen? in other words, compromise. you need compromise to get a deal done, but you're sort of saying don't compromise. >> no, we're saying have a serious conversation. the president is proposing taking an aspirin when we've got a bad case of pneumonia. you've got a trillion-dollar deficit this year, $172 billion just in november. 60% of our budget more or less is on entitlements. and he's proposing not to touch entitlements? that's a nonstarter. i mean, that is an irresponsible position to take.
you've got cost of living -- >> that's not his position. it's not his position. >> he said no entitlements. >> no, he did not say that. >> sequester is not going to happen. well, look at the campaign. he said three things. sequester won't happen. that was his campaign pledge. he pledged that entitlement reform is not going to take place now, we won't cut your benefits. that's what he said. and the third thing he said was that he was going to implement obamacare this is a $1.5 trillion tax increase on americans comprised of 19 separate taxes. now, you put that on the table, and where do you start? >> michael steele. >> hey, al, how are you doing, buddy? good to see you. >> i'm doing great. good to talk to you. >> quick question for you. in terms of this sort of notice that conservatives have given to members of the house, how do you expect boehner to go into the negotiations with that kind of sitting in his hip pocket? do you see it weighing him down at all?
is the emphasis from conservatives around the country that you're talking to more on, look, let's see what those cuts are going to be to entitlement programs that the president has not put on the table so far, or is it something more or less than that? >> well, we want to start a conversation on much deeper cuts. and then we think it gets serious. and then you could put whatever you want to on the table. we want to do one of two things, give the speaker some backbone on these negotiations. and "b," you know, he's going to be better off telling the president, look at my constituents and the conservative movement about where we are and look how much do i have in talking with you. and we believe we're the conscience of the nation when it comes to reasonable spending. we're in a fiscal crisis, and we're downplaying it, michael, to a dangerous point. i believe that the sequestration money or whatever else the president's put in front of us now is irresponsible. that's just not enough. you know, the crisis is much deeper than the solutions that
are being proffered. >> harold? >> the question i would have for al and michael is this. this sounds how it was litigated during the campaign and the republicans lost. i'm hearing about taxes and spending, but the president ran on a specific plan of we're going to raise taxes on the highest earners which taxes should go up on the highest earners. i think the country's accepted that. i think your argument is entitlement cuts have to come. but this is the argument that was made during the campaign. what is the difference now? i don't understand where -- i have great respect for you and michael both, but i don't understand how that political argument differs from what we saw over the last six months. as we well now, democrats picked up seats in the senate and the president was re-elected. >> harold, there's no winning hand in politics in this argument. every poll i have seen since the election showing different ways to solve the crisis, americans don't want them. we proposed -- you know, we exposed the challenge, americans buy in on the challenge, by and large, and then you proffer all
these solutions, and we don't want to take the medicine. so congress is going to have to make decisions that allow americans to take the medicine whether they want it or not. and then when things get better, americans will react in a positive way. there's no solution on the table i have seen that wins popularity. >> al, how do republicans, more specifically and i think more importantly to you and me, how do conservatives make the conservative message of ronald reagan, of margaret thatcher, of milton freedman as relevant in the 21st century to an 18-year-old latino in los angeles, as a 65-year-old banker in greenwich, connecticut? >> doesn't that come down to the candidate? >> it comes down to everything. you know, the first rule of engagement is to engage. and just like last time i saw mika, she was dancing salsa at our reagan awards dinner, if you remember. >> wow! that's engagement. >> that's -- you know, that's a point. and i'm just not being -- i'm just not trying to bring levity into the equation.
>> but you've got to engage! >> but you've got to engage. you know, when we have the republican national convention, what did i do? >> al, is it fair to say that if you've got a candidate that's dweeding america between 47% and 53%, that may not engage the way we need to engage? >> if you have a candidate who doesn't speak to 100% of america, he'll lose. someone won't buy it, but at least most americans will believe i may or may not vote for you, but i know you care. the most significant question asked in the polling data in the election i thought was, does so and so care for people like me? and if you're scoring 38%, you ain't going to win. and so what we need to do moving forward is making sure that whoever we select as a candidate well over 50% of americans say yes, this person cares for people like me. let me tell you, it's a right side of the brain/left side of the brain. this republican campaign was run on the left side of the brain, you know, only right side of the brain wins politics, and it's all about the heart.
>> it's the heart and we got killed there. >> we got killed. >> al cardenas, thank you very much. great to see you. still ahead, chuck todd, chris matthews and david gregory. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. americans are always ready to work hard for a better future. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first. helping generations through tough times. good times. never taking a bailout. there when you need them. helping millions of americans over the centuries. the strength of a global financial leader. the heart of a one-to-one relationship. together for your future. ♪
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♪ 'cause we're new yorkers >> oh, my gosh. that's the part we can show you. >> mark sanchez. >> stop. >> let's talk about north korea. there's a segsegue. >> no. >> can we talk about north korea after the break? >> yes. >> i think we can maybe squeeze that in, joe. >> it's hysterical. it's in "the new york times" business section. >> we've got a lot more to talk about. david gregory's going to be here, chris matthews. it's like 1,000 stars in the morning. it's like the concert last night. except we don't have guitars or music. ♪
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♪ faced off against each other out in the street ♪ andrew cuomo, governor christie are somewhere over there. where are you? there they are. they look friendly now -- they look friendly now, but 2016. >> okay. that's more from the concert last night. looks like fun. chris christie was there doing a great job for the state of new jersey in the wake of hurricane sandy. such a weird question about his weight recently. we'll talk about that.
we'll talk about north korea with richard haass. but we'll wait for joe for that. he's left. he's mad at me because i want to talk about bromenated vegetable oil. >> he's rebelling. >> because they're gone. >> jen, never again. do not bring those doughnuts. there's a story on "the new york times" business section. turns to a substance use for decades. there's this woman complaining about a certain product that is put in mountain dew, poweraid, fanthat, fresca, sunkist. if you read it, you'll find out what it is. these are drinks you should never serve your children. >> unless you love them. >> if you serve these drinks to your kids, you're hurting them because of the sugar. it's ridiculous. >> so richard haass --
>> it's ridiculous. >> -- and i'm shocked at this, that he attended woodstock. >> it's true. >> an amazing concert last night. you were at woodstock. so tell me, what part of the security detail were you? >> i did have some interactions with security. >> did they give you a billy club? did you drive in with the hell's angels? >> it was the summer between high school and college. and it was an experience. >> okay. i'm going to quiz you. what was your favorite act? do you remember? >> hendrix. >> okay. you weren't there. you're making this up. >> no. actually, i still have the tickets which they never collected. when you went to woodstock, things were so out of control that they never collected them. >> when you die, can i have those? >> wow! >> might be my most valuable possession, but thank you for your concern. it's touching. >> i'm just joking! he was at woodstock. it's an old man joke. >> and i can't talk about
bromenated vegetable oil? >> you know i'm joking. you know i'm going to beat you there. >> those doughnuts. >> you certainly are. just add another munchkin to your diet. you'll die in about five minutes. welcome back. harold ford jr., steve rattner, richard haass along with michael steele in washington. and joining us now from washington -- >> oh, this is big. >> -- moderator of "meet the press," david gregory. >> he was at woodstock, too. >> he would never drink the drinks that i mentioned on camera. >> i would not. i would not. >> he's very healthy. >> remember woodstock 2. he started that whole riot in the mud when green day was playing. it was very inspiring. >> wait. >> i wasn't in new york last night. that was an awesome lineup. >> an awesome lineup. >> do you believe that? >> this sunday's "meet the press" -- >> more aging rock stars. >> this sunday, david, you have a new e-book out now, "meet the press 65 years in the making volume 1." >> we can't wait to talk about that. we're going to talk first about the nbc news/"wall street
journal" poll. what do you make of this, david? the majority of democrats and republicans want a deal to be done, and they say do what it takes to get that deal done. but as far as assessing blame goes, it's far more split down the middle than we've seen in the past with the majority of americans saying if it doesn't work, they're going to blame both sides. >> right. >> and if there's a problem, then 24% say it's the republicans' fault. 19% say it's the president and democrats fault. those numbers are moving close together if you believe this poll, and you know i do because it's an nbc news/"wall street journal" poll. >> absolutely. there is always hope in an election that if you're voting that you're going to get a result that forces washington to work a little bit better than it does. there's been so much dysfunction, so much frustration and disgust about that, the summer of 2011 when people really turned against washington as having a huge leadership vacuum. so i think there's been a lot of hope infused into the idea that okay, president obama gets
another term. we send members of congress back from their districts. look how many of them got, you know, re-elected at 55% or more. so a large portion of the status quo, but they get a new lease to actually get something done. and there's also that pragmatism. it's not just the business community saying go ahead, raise tax rates as long as it's spent effectively. i think a lot of the american people feel that. and that's why i think you're seeing some movement toward the more pragmatic side of getting a deal done. but speaker boehner still wants to get as much as he can get in terms of spending cuts, particularly in entitlements. and i don't know that he's going to get that right now, but he may get a promise to get something. >> yeah, i don't know that he is, and i think that's the big problem for republicans, it's certainly a big problem for me. but we've been talking about, steve, about how we've got the behind-the-scenes discussions, the public discussions, and it does keep moving. we were just looking at a "politico" article talking about
john boehner telling the president privately he's willing to move above $800 billion number. we've seen the president move from $1.6 trillion to $1.4 trillion, i would suspect they're getting closer to $1 billion in revenue. but there's that sticking point. david just talked about it, entitlements. >> i think there's two sticking points. first boehner has to crack on rates. he still hasn't actually cracked on rates, and i think that's a deal breaker for the obama administration. i think they've drawn a line in the sand will, rightly or wrongly, and i think the republicans will have to cross it in order to get a deal done. in terms of entitlements, this will be a two-step deal. we'll need to have some kind of down payment where we agree on the broad outlines of what this program will look like, but then we'll be working well into next year to do the entitlements and tax stuff. one piece is what's the enforcing mechanism? what actually makes sure that whatever is agreed to now in terms of the total size of the package actually gets implemented over the course of
the next six to eight months. >> here's how i think that's going to work, steve. i think that what they'll do at least based on people i'm talking to, get a temporary measure to avert the fiscal cliff. so they can extend that by a matter of months. at least get the middle-class tax extension done in a bill, and maybe they set up a framework where they say we're going to, you know, cut $600 billion out of the medicare program. we're going to do it in the year of 2013. the committees will be assigned that task. if they fail to come up with it, then there will be a trigger that forces that amount of cuts, sort of a sequester 2. i think that's one of the ways they go about this. you are right, talking to the white house, they want to hear boehner say yes, i'll do the tax increases first, and i can deliver those votes before the president's in a position to commit what he's already committed to, by the way. things like being open to raising the medicare retirement age or means testing. i think raising the age right now could be tough on his left
flank. but some of this stuff was already on the table last year. >> and i think that's a really important point that the republicans don't give obama credit for. that he has put a lot of that stuff on the table. and he is prepared to go there. in terms of that mechanism, david, my understanding is the same as yours. it would be something like that. but remember, these guys hate the fiscal cliff. you know, it has caused this enormous problem. so the idea of setting up another fiscal cliff six months from now is pretty unappealing. but they'll have to go there. they just haven't quite figured out how to go there yet. >> harold, jump in. to an extent you'd feel the republicans are cornered on their position a bit, especially with this 2% in terms of raising tax rates? how do they get around this and argue back? i don't see it. >> well, i think early on, if you think about a year ago, a little over a year ago, the republicans had a better deal than what's put on the table now. they had a 3 1/2 ratio of
spending cuts to tax increases. you're looking at best a 2-1, pure politics. so they've lost that part of the argument. you flip it over and i think these numbers that we're seeing this morning that we've all commented on -- and i happen to agree with steve and david's analysis that at the end of the day, we'll just extend the cuts for middle-class earners and raise it on the top earners. but the country's going to blame all of these guys for this. and i'm still hopeful over this next several days we all know what has to be done. i mean, raising the eligibility age, restricting some benefits on medicare, but just raising the age. i'm 42. i shouldn't see medicare raised to 67 unless i fall on tough economic times, those who find themselves in tough economic circumstances should get medicare and social security earlier. the country accepts -- you can look at the polling. even democrats, by bigger numbers, are saying we can accept some entitlement changes if it means we're going to continue to invest in education, in infrastructure and those things that will make the country stronger and more competitive and make us a job-creating engine.
america a greater job-creating engine than we've been over the last several years. >> michael steele, i want to read from daniel heninger in "the wall street journal," a question i've been asking since 2009. "only a newborn babe in washington woods would think the congressional republicans' leverage with the president is much more than zero. it would be nice to think this is all a grim fairy tale and that come new year's eve, prince john of cincinnati will turn dross into gold. no, virginia. republicans lost the election, but does that mean republicans have to help obama dismantle their party by letting its most basic conservative principles disappear into the beltway's smoke and mirrors? that's what's happening now. where is the big picture? why is it not possible for boehner or anybody else in this party to articulate for the dumbstruck public watching these dreadful cliff negotiations what the republican party stands for?
who speaks for the gop?" michael steele? you will now answer this question. >> speaking for the gop, no, i think that that is the profound understatement here that is so relevant to why you see boehner struggling with his right flank and with his middle, quite frankly, to come to some common ground. there is no scoping out of the bigger argument. putting into context why we so fervently believe in reducing tax rates as opposed to raising tax rates at this time in our economic history. why we're even in the context of that, joe, willing to talk to the president about a 1% to 2% notch-up in those rates if spending cuts, real spending cuts, are part of the conversation and why we're not against, you know, taking care of the poor and the least among us, but looking for creating those advantages in the
marketplace to give them the opportunity so when the rising tide comes in, not only do they rise with that tide, but they have the boat they need to do that. and so economically and otherwise. so i think that that argument is not being made a part of this debate as well as getting lost which is why we're getting hammered sometimes in these polls. >> david gregory, then richard haass. david, jump in. >> i have to say, i've been paying pretty close attention to this. and i think republicans have made the argument over and over and over again that raising taxes in their judgment, based on their ideological and philosophical belief, is bad. that it's bad for the economy. that it inhibits economic growth, that it's bad for small business. but that argument has been put to voters pretty squarely. and voters don't agree with it. they don't agree with it based on the past election results, based on how the president's been campaigning for it. and by the way, when republicans wanted government to do what only government can do, go to
war, take on huge areas of spending, they didn't want to raise taxes then. but the reality is that government's at a point where because of bad decisions, because of mismanagement, it is in a place where it has to be able to do a couple of things at once. it has to be able to spend. it has to be able to raise new revenue, it has to be able to cut back on the spending problem. all of those things have to happen at once. and everybody's got their hand in this to get us to this point. so i really don't think that that easy rhetoric of why don't they say what republicans stand for, americans do know where republicans stand for with regard to taxes. >> but david, the problem is they don't know what that means to them. just saying hey, i want to reduce taxes, i want less government, well, what does that mean to me if i'm unemployed? what does it mean to me if i'm a single mom trying to raise two kids and get them through college? we're great at the analytical statistics. we don't personalize it. we don't make it real for real people who are trudging through this economy trying to get back on their feet.
>> i agree with that. >> the fassel argument is there, but we don't relate it. we don't translate it to people, and that's where we lose the argument. >> i don't disagree with that. i think boehner hasn't articulated what the republican party stands for. i think you're right, michael. i've talked to other republicans who think they have to become much more of a worker party and not a boss party. >> i think david and steven mentioned something that we have to build into this, so now we have debt ceilings that are no longer automatically increased, fiscal cliffs and sequestrations. what we're having is an american political system that can't work without having a gun put at its own head. it may not work. and then what's so worrying is every single businessman i know says what do we need? predictability, some sense of where the economy's going to be in six months or a year. what are the rules going to be so we can make basic decisions about investment. everything we're seeing in washington now is working against building this kind of
predictability into the american political system which is going exactly against what it is we need. so even if we get through the cliff, then we've got the debt ceiling vote february and then future cliffs. the system is so broken here. what we're seeing is no ability just to legislate as a normal process. >> and this is, as you guys were talking about before we went on the show this morning, mika, this is just the first act. >> yeah. >> this is just the first act, and it sets up a lot of other things. >> david henniger, the real question, who speaks for america? you had the president of the university of pennsylvania yesterday talking about compromise. everybody's not going to get exactly what they want. it's called america, it's called government, it's called the birth of a nation and how we wo work. >> it's called separation of powers. it's called americans that elected barack obama decided to elect 60% of their governors as republicans and decided to put
john boehner back as speaker of the house. it's divided government. it's what we do. >> so let me end this segment on a slightly brighter note, the positive way to think about this. >> oh, good. >> so as not to depress everyone. look, the republicans have moved on taxes. that's a big move for the republicans. the democrats have moved on entitlements. that's a big move for them. if we actually get through this next six to eight months the way david and i were sort of sketching out it could happen, you could actually get a massive deficit reduction package and stabilize that debt-to-gdp ratio. i'm not saying any of this is going to happen. but i think compared to where we could be now, it's not as bad as it could be. there's still a glimmer of hope. >> mr. sunshine. >> we have mr. sunshine. we were going to end this segment on a bright note, but -- >> north korea? >> yeah. we have just one other thing we're going to add on. north korea successfully launched a satellite into orbit. leaders in wash washing, japan and south korea are calling for immediate consequences. even china is criticizing north
korea's move. the three-stage ballistic missile was carrying a satellite which u.s. officials say is now tumbling out of control as it orbits around the earth. its purpose remains unclear. but officials say the rocket is similar in design to one that could potentially reach the united states, richard. >> forget about the satellite. this is essentially a long-range missile test. it's a question of when and not if north korea gets the capacity, among other things, to target the west coast of the united states. now, they still haven't figured out how to miniaturize their nuclear weapons and put them on top of that missile, but that day will come. so one thing we have is north korea continuing to be a bowl in a china shop. and all this talk of sanctions and consequences are just that. it's so much talk. china is either unable or unwilling to rein them in. meantime, you have china flying aircraft over disputed islands of japan. japan in response scrambling fighter jets. what you're beginning to see, if you take north korea, what's
happening with china and japan, you've got elections in both south korea and japan where conservative candidates have a real chance. you're beginning to see the tectonic plates move in asia. this is the part of the world that we've simply seen through an economic lens for decades. things are beginning to happen. nationalism is now coming to the fore. this part of the world, we can't take for granted anymore, is going to be stable. this is actually -- we're all so focused on the middle east. this is the bigger story. this is the bigger story. >> you mean we should stop paying for japan's security? >> we don't want to leave everybody to themselves. we don't want to have a race where the japanese, the vietnamese, the chinese and others essentially sort it out without us. we do not want asia to begin to look like europe did a century ago. i'm simply saying that the tectonic plates are moving. >> shifting. >> we have got to pay more attention to this part of the world. >> all right, richard. and with you here, we will be given no choice but to do exactly that. >> thank you, joe. >> thank you.
i want those tickets. >> there will be a lot more time spent discussing north korea. >> very good. thank you. you guys were talking about a report, harold, seriously by, what, 2035? >> 2030. asia. >> dominate. >> will be bigger than u.s. and european economies combined. >> i don't believe it. >> this is a u.s. intelligence report. >> i know. i know. i'm just saying, i'm ever the optimist. i think we're going -- this country's going to figure out a way forward, and we're going to turn it around. david, "meet the press: 65 years of history in the making, volume 1." i can't wait. tell us about this, please. >> well, the way it's broken up is interesting is by major events in the history covered by the program. you know, e-books are, you know, sort of trendy right now. what we think is so great about it is you can be reading about the civil rights era or the cold war and click on video from the
program which, of course, goes back to 1947. so there's a lot of features there. and i think people will find it very interesting. >> wonderful. david gregory, thank you so much. michael steele, thank you as well. >> thank you, michael. >> all right. thank you, guys. coming up, chuck todd will take us inside the new nbc news/"wall street journal" numbers. also, can a simple medical test change your life? we'll have the exclusive first look at the new issue of "time" magazine with managing editor rick stengel. you're watching "morning joe" brewed by starbucks. [ male announcer ] you are a business pro. governor of getting it done. you know how to dance... with a deadline. and you...rent from national.
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atching tv even better. if your tv were a hot dog, zeebox would be some sort of fancy, french mustard. just like adding fancy mustard to a hotdog makes you go "woah!," zeebox adds video, info, and playalongs to spice up your favorite shows. download zeebox free and say "woah" every time you watch tv. that's a great picture. harold, let's show that picture of harold ford again as we look at the white house. >> it was taken by my wife. >> i think if you had the "morning joe" photographer, you would have won. >> there's still time. >> there's going to be another time. we're all in political rehab, harold.
ask harold strasen. you keep running. with us now from washington, d.c., nbc news chief white house correspondent and political director and host of "the daily rundown" and the protector of nbc news/"wall street journal's" reputation on the line and on twitter, much like last night -- >> i know, i'm on fire today. >> -- at the end of "indiana jones and the last crusade," he's like that old knight. >> i'll be that guy, you're right. >> he chose wisely. >> choose wisely. >> i'm actually reading some of these tweets, this fight you're having with these people. i don't know exactly where they're getting their facts from -- >> i don't either. >> -- because you guys were dead right. nbc news/"wall street journal" poll, dead right. ppc, automated polling outfit, didtastic job. >> they did. >> cbs/"new york times," not quite as good, but they were up there.
nbc news poll along with one one were the gold standards. >> they should be. we spent a lot of money. >> gallup, for the record, was a little behind coming in at 47. >> just a little bit outside. >> which begs the question, you know, i've always followed gallup, and i've alleged loves gallup, but this is just sort of a branding thing. i see gallup putting the president's approval rating at a certain number, i might as well be getting it from my 4-year-old, jack. >> they have a real challenge in front of them to fix their brand. you know what's been a problem for gallup is that for 20 years, professional pollsters, and you've heard this, joe, have whispered to us, be careful at gallup. this or that, and they never seemed to be that off, but they had a pretty bad year. >> take us through these poll numbers, shall we, chuck? big takeaway. >> our big takeaway has to do with the fact that the blame is now sort of evenly divided between both sides. much different than the abc poll
of a couple of days ago. what's your big takeaway from this poll? >> by the way, what's different is that we offered the both part of this. >> oh, okay. >> abc did not. >> there you go. >> how you word a question and what you offer, that stuff does matter. we believe in offering that because we think that there are a lot of people that look at it that way. not everything is "a" versus "b." some people say that's all of washington. and you have to account for those guys in washington. they don't know what they're doing. and people do throw away their partisan hat when it comes to judging that. and i think that that's -- that, to me, is the real -- that's the real unknown factor in this. i talked to a republican yesterday who said you can't go any lower. we don't have a lot to lose politically. and i said, but you do have a lot to gain. right? you come up with a deal, you cut a deal, there will be this because the public has no
expect -- what's interesting about our poll, they're not naive. they follow this. they realize these guys are not going to get along for a while. they have really low expectations. so they actually got a deal. the public would be surprised and would reward them. >> yeah. so that, i think, is that, joe, in the gop? is a deal something that would give them political gain, or would they look like they caved and disappoint their base and the cycle of sort of -- >> man, i'll be honest with you. >> -- quite frankly dysfunction continues. >> i'm curious, chuck, what your take is. i'm putting myself back in the position i was in four times, running as a republican congressman, a conservative congressman. unless i get a lot of cuts on the other side, politically there's absolutely no up side for me individually in my district. >> so what is there to gain? >> to support a compromise unless i can go back to my people and say, look. we've saved medicare for another 30 years. we've saved social security for
another generation. >> yeah. >> we've stopped medicaid from bankrupting our state. unless that's there, there's just no incentive. and guess what? they don't care what any of us say. they care about what the voters say in their districts. >> actually, they don't want to hear that you've cut medicare even if you're saying you're saving it. by the way, they're against that, too. that's the political problem here for what, you know, what republicans say they want is not politically popular even among their republican base voters. but you go to a point, that's the disconnect here. right? it could be a national polling and a large majority are on one side of this. but in these individual districts, they're not going to get rewarded for compromise. they're going to get punished for compromise. and that is the problem that is facing the white house when trying to come up with a way to negotiate with boehner and what boehner's got to try to figure out. >> joe, let me ask you a question, though.
imagine you get not just a fkz deal but a bigger deal in 2013. and just say the economy grows 2.5%, 3% going into the midterm elections. >> it's going to. >> it's going to. how much does that, then, give people protection? >> here's the irony of it all. my buddy, tom coburn, said it a year and a half ago. the bigger this deal, the more cover we all have. if this is a comprehensive deal, fine. the higher the number is -- if they come -- if boehner says raise taxes $1 but he's only cutting $2 trillion over the next ten years when we're going to increase the debt by $5 trillion, i'm not voting for it. but if they come at you with a $4 trillion deal, a $5 trillion deal that's more comprehensive, at that point, the bigger the deal is, the harder it is to turn your back on it. >> also, again, if the u.s. economy responds favorably, doesn't that give everybody a lot of cushion, if suddenly you're running with tailwinds rather than headwinds? big difference running for re-election when you've got a
2.5% or 3% growth. >> i ran against clinton tax increases in 1993. and i kept running against them every two years. and i kept winning by larger margins. i said it was the cuts that made the economy grow, and i believed that. obviously bill clinton made some really tough choices that i will now, 15 years later, salute him for. chuck. >> statesmanlike. >> i am statesmanlike. give me a decade or so, chuck, and i've become statesmanlike. >> oh, my lord. >> 14 years ago, i just remember -- i remember when we first saw you on tv. one of my favorite lines, actually, joe, when i was at "hotline," i love the hotline except i can't let my kids read it anymore during the impea impeachment thing because it got racy. >> it was a little racy. >> the split in the republican party, though, is going to be between folks like you, joe, back in the day who are worried
about their districts. and then you do have what -- if you've noticed, the republican governors that want to run for president, the senators that want to run for president, anybody that's got to run statewide frankly anywhere are the ones talking about oh, just cut the deal on taxes already and get this over with. and then let's have another conversation. >> yeah. you know, chuck, though, also, there was this poll out yesterday that said democrats believe in santa claus more than republicans. i can tell you republicans believe more in santa claus than they believe that you're going to get cuts from a congress in the future. so it's not just that my voters supported me for holding a hard line on taxes. it's what i believe. i never believe, democrats or republicans equally, will ever make tough decisions and stick to them. i mean, so i trust the verify right now. you know what i'm saying? >> well, that's why you're going to get these extra cliffs because everything -- that's going to be the verification.
and even whatever the deal, it's got to be so fragile that we'll fill in this cliff, dig two more trenches down the road and force this again because of this lack of trust that you just talked about. >> chuck, really quickly, we've got to go. alex is screaming in my ear. >> i know he is. he yelled in my ear. stop talking. what am i supposed to do? joe keeps talking to me. >> you're going to love this last question. look into your crystal ball. is nick saban going to cleveland? >> why would he? if he leaves, he's going to dallas or nowhere. that's what i've always believed. why would you go -- i love cleveland, and i feel bad for cleveland fans. they deserve a winner, but why would he go to cleveland unless they're going to give him ownership of the team? >> yeah. if it's a lombardi-type deal, it makes sense. >> other than that, you don't leave unless you go to a glamour job. it would have to be -- >> it would be a step down otherwise. >> new york, dallas. i mean, he already left miami, and that was a better job than cleveland. >> alex is tired.
he's edgy. >> i know. >> did you hear that? >> he just said we're screwed. i don't know what that means. that was alex in our ear saying that. thank you, chuck todd. >> thank you. we'll see you after "morning joe" on "the daily rundown." coming up, steve rattner looks at the possible impact of budget cuts and what they could have on future retirees. he breaks out the charts next on "morning joe." >> it's sort of like a dork's version of woodstock.
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we need to do some jumping jacks or some sort of exercise. >> you want to do some push-ups over there? >> you should. you and richard. i'd like to see that. steve rattner has charts. looking at how much the budget cuts being considered now on capitol hill will impact retirees in the future. so steve, explain. where do you want to begin? >> well, first, as we've been discussing for the last hour and a half, nobody knows exactly what's going to happen in washington yet. so these are all kind of hypotheticals. >> but we talked about raising the eligibility age for medicare. >> there are a couple ideas floating around what's going to give you a sense of what's going to happen. for political reasons, everybody's talking about phasing these things in slowly. it's unlikely we're going to wake up --
>> no. it's not going to be today. >> let's start with raising the medicare eligibility age. this is something that's been much discussed. it is said president obama would probably go from 65 to 67 and be phased in over a period of years. so what happens is people 65 to 67 are going to either going to have to work longer or get their own private insurance. and we can now look at what the implications of that are for them financially on the next chart. >> okay. >> so for the wealthier part of the group, they're going to simply pay more because they are going to either have to go out and do something to replace what they've lost in medicare. according to a kaiser foundation study, an average of $2,200 more for each of them. those are on the lower end of the economic ladder will go for the affordable care act which helps kick in and helps them as they buy insurance privately. they'll actually save something like $2,300.
it depends on which end of the economic spectrum on, you're affected differently. now let's look at social security because the other proposal floating around is to change the way that social security benefits are calculated. the cost of living adjustments. i won't get into all the technicali technicalities. this is what's happened to social security benefits since 2000. if you look at the red line this is what would have happened had we used the chain cpi to adjust social security benefits. so about $1,000 less over ten years in benefits for social security retirees. and that grown line shows what the average worker got over that same period which was less than under either of these. so the point is that no matter what happens down there, it looks like these will be changes that are going to cost retirees money. more for health care, less money coming in for social security over a long period of time. >> but not up front. >> so what should be done to save these programs? >> well, it's what we've been talking about. this is part of the price we're paying for having spent too much
and borrowed too much over the years. people are going to have to deal with this and make changes in their lifestyle and work longer, make other accommodations. >> significant changes? >> well, what we were talking about. say $1,000 a year over ten years for a social security recipient, a couple thousand dollars a year for a medicare recipient. >> if we ran a business, we would do this. otherwise our board would run us out? >> well, this is exactly what business is doing, in fact. this is what business is doing in order to get their costs in line. >> that's my point. the government's not. i'm in full agreement. >> we simply can't handle the demographic pressures unless we do this. up next, how much should new parents know about their kids' genetic futures? "time" magazine takes a provocative look at the practical and emotional implications of genetic testing of children. rick stengel is next with an exclusive first look at the new issue. we'll be right back. ♪
so cute. welcome back to "morning joe." it is now time to look at "time" magazine with managing editor rick steppingel here to reveal latest issue. and it is the cutest cover i've ever seen. it's adorable. what do you got? >> so it's about the mainstreaming of genetic testing. want to know my future. there's an adorable baby on the cover. >> that's a girl. >> it is a girl. and it's about how in the future -- and even now genetic testing is becoming routine. in 2003, 2004 when they basically cataloged the whole human genome, it cost over a billion dollars. now you can have it tested for
about $7,000. there are more wholesale or retail firms which for 99 bucks you can get your 200 chromosomes. so we've always thought forewarned is forearmed. and the problem is that there's lots of things we can find out and know about that we can't do anything about. so do you really want to know that that little baby girl has genes that are likely to -- that she'll get dementia or parkinson's disease or things that we can't really do too much about? it's great to know that if you're liable to be diabetic, for example, then you could do something about your child's diet. but i do think, you know, i mean for this next generation and certainly the generation after, genetic testing will become an absolutely mainstream thing. and that when you have a baby born, you know, that baby's dna sequencing and genomes will be in the cloud. and every doctor or every time that baby goes to the doctor, they'll know all of those things and the likelihoods. >> some obvious positive benefits of this knowledge, but
raises some ethical issues as well? >> it does raise some ethical issues as well. >> major ones. >> obviously for insurance, for medical care. you know, do you want the goth to know that you're liable, you know, to have alzheimer's? all of these things have ethical and moral consequences that haven't really been examined yet. nor have even the medical consequences been examined yet. there are a lot of doctors that advise people not to get their genomes sequenced. there are a lot of doctors think it will increase the cost of health care. >> wow. you guys have any questions about the cover story? this is absolutely fascinating. >> i think there are a lot of ethical questions here. how many stories have we heard of people who were born with what some would consider a challenge or a problem to them, that the general public accepts, yet they go on to achieve unbelievable things. >> right. >> so i hope as we learn these things, and i agree with richard, i think our society's appetite for this kind of stuff is only going to increase.
it will be mainstream. but i hope we don't go segmenting and discriminating and putting people on paths and narrowing what people's expectations are. >> harold, doesn't there need to be a chinese wall between this information that an individual gets privately and why it can be told to the government? what can be told to insurance companies? what can be told to third parties? i think that's the key. we should not, should we, put a burden on parents who find out about their children to report to insurance companies what they have learned? >> right. i mean, there have to be privacy, you know, regulations about it. and part of the problem is that our scientific knowledge has advanced farther in testing than it treatment. so we do know about things in advance that we can't necessarily treat. that's -- you know, that's a terrible bargain in some ways. i do think as treatment catches up, it will coalesce and make sense. >> that's a terrible bargain. as you said, there are quite a number of things where we can treat them and do other
preventative things to reduce the probability of it being a problem later. do you have any sense yet as to how many people want this information? where does it fall in terms of people wanting it or not wanting it? >> i think that company 23 and me, about 180,000 people have actually had their genomes sequenced either in the full way or through 200 or so. so again, right now it's expensive. it's much less expensive than it was five years ago. it's much more expensive than it will be five years from now. five years from now it might be like getting, you know, a pregnancy test at a pharmacy. f. five years from now, it might be like getting a pregnancy test at a pharmacy. >> i'm reading right now in zakaria's article, a guy that has been fighting oun issues that have mattered most to me, certainly mattered most to me since i've been in government on the debt.
he, fareed says, has become the target of many on the left and fareed talks about how it's a strange target for the left to have considering he's been telling republicans for some time today's debt is not the problem, this next generation's debt is and raising taxes is not the problem. you know, growing the economy is. >> yes, i mean he -- fareed's point, which is very smart, is that a lot of people on the left have been so wedded to entitlement spending that in fact when pete comes along and says, look, we've got to reduce the deficit and the debt and we have to do it through cutting entitlements, a lot of democrats, and this goes back to your discussion earlier, congressmen who realize, hey, there's no incentive for me to go back to my district and say, hey, medicare is smaller, social security is smaller, medicare is smaller and he says that democrats have to get on the ride side of this. not that reducing the debt is the panacea for all things, but
it's a smart column. >> it may just stop us from going over the cliff. what else do you have in "time" this week? >> i was in egypt a couple of weeks ago. there's a great story about the muslim brotherhood, the history of the muslim brotherhood. they were formed in 1928. they've never been in power before. they were an organization that was a revolutionary organization. their leaders were all in prison. what happens when the muslim brotherhood gets into power and we're starting to see that in egypt. i'm cautiously optimistic about them. i find them similar to the guys in the anc. they're willing to be pragmatic in pursuit of their goal. a lot of people on the left think i'm crazy about that. >> even more people on the right think you're crazy for saying that. but you believe that, though. i do. i was there, i was in egypt last year at this time. i talked to a lot of the brotherhood people. they stand in the case of egypt
and even tunisia, their future is being linked to the west that, tourism is the main source of income. they cannot create a sharia law society. nobody will come there. and i think they are actually pretty pragmatic. >> the new issue of "time" "want to know my future?" thank you very much. >> and they also have an article on the legalization. >> i saw that. >> coming up, chris matthews will join the conversation. more "morning joe" in just a moment. ♪ there's nothing to believe in, we'll hail the new found way ♪ bacon and cheese add up to 100 calories? your world. ♪ [ whispers ] real bacon... creamy cheese... 100 calories... [ chef ] ma'am [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. how much is your current phone bill?
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coming up, speaker boehner admits there are serious differences between him and the president in their budget negotiations while nancy pelosi urges them to figure it out. >> and according to "huffington post," apple is returning to google maps. >> it's about time. [ male announcer ] this is joe woods' first day of work.
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steele. president obama making a statement that we are now with the opposition, despite the fact we don't know who the opposition is. >> the opposition is plural. the united states has thrown in ice -- its political lot with them. the government is shooting off scud missiles, old ballistic missile, which are essentially terror weapons. you shoot them off, you don't know where they're going to come down. this is the beginning of a slow ending. >> richard, i was just going to ask what is assad's end game and should he not be contacting the russians saying get me the hell out of here? >> that will have a huge psychological effect. >> putin is a kgb guy. he knows the government will be hostile towards russia if they don't move quickly. >> one day they'll make that calculation and figure they'll get positive reaction for it.
that will be seen as a decisive change in the context. it's a question of when if not if that happens. this is all taking longer than a lot of people thought but it's still happening. >> wow. >> let's get to politics here at home and the fiscal cliff. one thing we can probably agree with here, the american people would love to see a deal before enough year's day. that's according to a new nbc/wall street journal poll. in fact, a majority of democrats and republicans say they would like their leaders to compromise, even if it means giving ground on long-held party positions. >> wow, look at that. >> so at this point what does anybody have to lose but to come together and make a deal? expectations are unchecked with respondents equally divided on whether or not a deal will get in. 24% say it will be the republicans' fault while 19% will point the finger at president obama. >> let's stop and freeze on that number again. this is a number that is born
not only from what's been happening the past couple of weeks but what's been happening over the past couple of years the republicans have damaged their brand that the benefit will always lie with the president and democrats until the republicans change that dynamic. >> but this is a different number than the last time we saw the poll. >> republicans really took a hit. >> 53% were blaming the republicans and about half that many the democrats. now it looks like it's shifting more toward an equal blame scenario. >> which is a positive for the kwi. the more both sides of liable for what may be wrong, the better chance of getting a deal. >> it may have been as a result of the sugar rush to my head, i misread the poll here. a poll out here earlier in week did have the number up in the
50s. and so what do the republicans do? >> well, i think the republicans continue to make the argument for putting on the table some spending cuts. we want to see what the real numbers are. what are the priorities of the administration when it comes to entitlement reform? and i think that poll reflects sort of a change that's going to put some pressure on the white house now. i mean, because, you know, you can't get there and beat the drum saying this is all going to fall on the republicans' head. now it's beginning to come back a little on the president and the democrats. >> again, i'm not doing the president's bidding because i'm with republicans. i want them to be tougher on holding a firm line if they don't get spending cuts but it is one poll. republicans need to be so careful and cautious. i'm not talking about substance, i'm talking about on style, on how they handle this. >> absolutely. we're still on our own rhetorical cliff, if you will, when it comes to this issue. i think by and large you're still looking at 24% of the people that are polled saying,
yeah, this is still, you know, a big part of this is going to be the republicans' problem if this doesn't go through. but i think in terms of the momentum for the nature of the debate, the american people are putting pressure now equally on both parties to get this done. that's reflected throughout the poll and i think that's going to move the timetable up and we'll probably see something realistically in play before christmas and voted on by the new year. >> that's what the american people want. richard haass, you've had a lot of dealing with certainly the foreign relations context with negotiating. compare how the president is doing now. >> i think when the president staked out the position at the beginning, it didn't create a context where the republicans could meet him. it looked more like a way of casting blame. the narrowing of the polls, though, and we're beginning to see it in the president's movement, he's givbeginning to e something, there's a sense of a negotiation dynamic.
it seems the president has moved away from blaming the republicans and more towards getting a deal. we had mike duke in from walmart earlier in week. z >> impressive guy. >> he said 15% of the shoppers coming into walmart said that they were going to spend less going into christmas than they would have otherwise because of of the fiscal cliff. this uncertainty -- this overhang is having a tremendous impact. that as much as anything will also put pressure on the white house the last thing you need is people underspending going into the holidays. >> those who will be primarily affected bit tax increase, a $2,000 average increase, the majority of the walmart customers would feel that immediately. >> working middle class. >> walmart really focusses on what politicians call walmart moms. they and other researchers are seeing in their internal data that their shoppers and
consumers are very nervous. consumer confidence drives what happens between now and end of of the year and this will have a major impact on the economy. as you showed news your charts last time if the white house and congress fail to make a deal. >> i think business is clearly not hiring as many people, holding back on investment. ben bernanke said yesterday and i think he's a straight-up guy and call it is as he sees it this was beginning to fact the economy. i want to make two other points. one, this republican rift that the president hasn't spelled out in spending cuts is simply not true. you may not agree with him -- >> where is he cutting and how much -- >> in his february budget he went through all the components of his $3.6 trillion plan. they come from $350 from the entitlement program, $250 billion from other programs, $1.6 trillion of tax increases and so on. so he has actually spelled it out.
>> you say that adds up to -- again, i'm not cross-examining you here. i'm trying to engage in simple math. >> 1.6 trillion. >> this looks like $600 billion in spending cuts from discretionary and mandatory. >> 350 from entitlement and 300 from other stuff. >> that gets us to 1.2. >> it gets to 2.2. >> you've got about $1.2 trillion already enacted in the budget control act of 2011 that everybody agrees should be counted. this is not phony math. you can add those in. >> should you really? if you're running a business should you add it in when the government has added more debt since the amount of those cuts? >> you have to start everywhere and everyone is acting from
before those were enacted. even i agree with that math. the president has specified what he wants to do. you may not like it, may not agree with it but i think what's happen hearing is really on the republican side. the real problem is on the republican side. boehner cannot get a majority of his caucus to agree to raise rates by any amount. that seems to be what's happening so we're in a stalemate. i don't believe the president will accept a deal that doesn't increase some increase in rates. it doesn't have to be 39.6, it has to be something, but boehner cannot corral his troops -- >> well, you don't know that. michael steele, speak to that because i've said very clearly and i think haley barbour have said if i know there are going to be real cuts in medicare and social security, fine, we can talk about a deal, we can talk about 37%. >> we're on the exact same page
there and that's exactly what i was referencing when i made the statement that i did about what the republicans are expecting. i appreciate steve rattling off $320 billion in entitlement cuts but is that in medicare and medicaid? is it raising the eligibility age? is it means testing? how are those cuts manifested? are they real? steve, you know very well that in washington when you're talking about obligating a future congress to make cuts, that's not a deal. and that's the same hook that republicans have always gotten hung on in previous negotiations with democrats when rates -- rate increases are on the table. so republicans are saying, look, we'll go 37. all right, we may even talk about 39. but we want to see real cuts that are right now, not something that you're going to obligate the congress of 2020 to do because that's not going to happen. >> but that's fine, michael, but that's not what they're saying. >> that is what they're saying. >> no, no. boehner wrote a letter in plain
english, typed it out, no increases period. >> that means something? >> he wrote that letter, the president said we're not going to move from 39. >> no, he did not say a that. >> let me finish. the president subsequently said we can move halfway and boehner did not rule out -- >> he briefly did not rule it out and then he ruled it out. >> we would raise the top rate to 37 and the second rate to 35. currently they're 35 and 33. >> you've heard bainor say, tom coburn saying, saxby chambliss say it. you've heard a lot of republicans come out and sap we will do something but we need something in return. don't expect john boehner to be leading the charge rhetorically when he's got to figure out how to pull the majority along with
him at the end of the day. >> let's hear the latest from them. >> it's important. it's important to let people know reports from inside the republican caucus suggest that john boehner has the power to pull the majority of the majority now. >> well, that's -- >> if a deal is done. >> exactly. >> but i would be the first to strongly discourage any republican for voting for any increase in any taxes unless they put their cuts on the table. >> right. >> and i would do it the same with democrats. i agree with you. >> one thing that could embolden the president during these negotiations is his job approval number, which is at 53%, the highest approval rating he's got i don't know since the poll was taken in january of 2011. republicans did not fare as well, only 30% of those polled have a positive view of the gop. the lowest for republicans in a year. 34% had-- 44% had a favorable v
of the democrats. >> there was a tense conversation on the phone between president obama and speaker boehner. >> how do we know about this? >> republican insiders tell this to nbc news. >> it's not helpful. >> okay. just saying. >> i'm saying it's not helpful, the fact that there are tense conversations on the phone and we know about those tense conversations? >> want to know about john boehner? >> sure. >> do we have the boehner sound bite? roll it. >> the president and i had a deliberate call yesterday and we spoke honestly and openly about the differences that we face. but the president's calling for $1.4 trillion worth of revenue. that cannot pass the house or the senate.
>> we can bring a bill to the floor that the republicans don't have to vote for except for 25. hi to do it as speaker. do you know what it was like for me to bring a bill to the floor to fund the war in iraq? it's tough. but you have to do it. is the point you don't want to put your members on the spot, figure it out. we did. figure it out. >> figure it out, richard, when both sides are dealing with each other in good faith and i think it's important to note that the president was at one point $6 trillion. he's at $1.4 trillion. that ain't nothing. i think that requires john boehner, if we're playing in good faith to publicly go from 800 to 1. send a message and have the battles that we were talking about, michael was talking about, how are you going to cut, where is it going to come from? but it will happen i think. >> it will happen. the details are more obviously moving towards 1.2 trillion in
new revenues, the mix of spend being cuts have get more specific. the real question is whether it gets done by the end of the year or it spills over into the new year and markets have reaction. i think it's more a question of when if not if you get it. and it's going to be small. no matter what gets done now, it's not going to take this entire issue in any way off the table. we're going to come back to it in february with the question of the debt ceiling and more important, all of 2013, this issue times several is going to be in the center because whatever scale they deal with now won't be enough. >> when we come back, "hardball"'s chris matthews joins us. and we'll talk about eve ensler
about her new off broadway play. >> let's talk about what happened yesterday. i talked to and mentioned that the possibility of a big east coast storm tuesday of next week. now, overnight since that period, a lot of our weather computers are trending to a weaker storm. still be a storm and one that won't have a lot of cold air or a lot of snow. anyone who has travel plans tuesday, wednesday morning we have a possibility of a wintry mix and rain and wind. those details are iffy. this morning, one area of the country that doesn't get a lot of rain is seeing a little bit. storm system working through southern california. rain overnight in l.a. if you're heading down i-5 toward oceanside toward san diego, you have steady rain. one of those rare days where it's almost completely sunny and beautiful east of the rockies but we'll have a chance of rain
in the desert southwest. they need it. they have been very dry lately overs last year or two. we leave you with this shot, beautiful day in washington, d.c. after a chilly morning. you should be in the mid 40s, near 50 this afternoon. enjoy lunch jou doors. you're watching "morning joe," brewed by starbucks. ♪ ♪ i love the holidays. and with my bankamericard cash rewards credit card,
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[ applause ] >> there they are. they look friendly now. they look friendly now but 2016. >> from washington, chris matthews. his back "jack kennedy, elusive hero" out now in paperback. let's stop for a second and talk about what we just saw there. isn't it great a politician of either party gets rewarded that way with a standing ovation at madison square garden for bipartisanship, for crossing party lines? >> i agree, joe. i agree completely and he's at 76% in that state, and he'll probably beat cory booker and
has a very good shot of being a wende wendell wilke, a very popular figure that could actually take on hillary clinton if she runs. >> a 72% approval rating in one of the reddest, mo pro-union states in america. that's defying political gravity. >> i think the fact that it's jersey has a lot more to do with whether it's blue or red. jersey, and the jersey boys about the four seasons and of course, you know, the boss and all that's going on right now. everything's about jersey for some reason because it's gritty, it's ethnic, it's italian, has a certain attitude, "the sopranos", that's the negative thing. but it's a gritty, ethnic thing coming on strong. when you ask somebody who says
why do you send your kids to catholic school? he says what's your name? he gets the name and talks to them personally and says excuse me, it's none of your business. even if it is pushy, people like the authenticity with it, i'm connecting with you. connecting. >> he does that very well. >> wherever i go, chris, when we go give talks, a lot of people will talk about bipartisanship. i always talk about how you're writing a book about tip o'neill's and ronald reagan's relationship. there has been a gloss put on this relationship by some but it undermines the central importance of the story. tip o'neill didn't respect ronald reagan politically. he said reagan didn't know much about politics. he loved telling that story about how he confused a president with a baseball pitcher. always suggested like all of
reagan's opponents suggested that the guy was a little dense. that was reagan's genius. but he didn't respect reagan politically, reagan didn't respect tip o'neill politically, but they both really liked each other personally and respected each other personally. >> it's very complicated. it's going to take 100,000 words to explain it. i've been working on the social security part lately, the big deal that came about and it's just like what's going on now. everybody thought it was glossed over, really nice and sweet and everything. every newspaper clipping i've been able to pull back to refresh my memories of those days shows it was back and forth like a tennis match, every day, it's your turn, it's your turn, it's your turn. finally on the last day of the first extension, january 15th and they were about to give up and monahan is yelling "we can't lose this," he says i understand speaker o'neill agrees with this
position. it's almost like a kidnapping when you have to deliver the baby and deliver the money at the same moment to get the deal done. and they were working it through and it's just amazing how similar it is with boehner and the president today. but i think the key thing working for that deal was that there there had just been that '82 election where social security was such a good deal for the democrats, such a good deal for they. reagan understood the electorate said leave it alone, don't cut the benefits, just like tip o'neill that in '80 reagan won the issue who is the strongest guy to lead the country and i think boehner does implicitly understand the fact he can't go down defending the rich in this deal. i think that's gotten through to everybody. >> there was another point would you never see in the newspaper headlines, part of the story when richard reid road his biography on ronald reagan, a time that during tho social
security discussions that reagan got angry at tip o'neill and blurted out in a press conference that tip was nothing but a demagogue. >> those words were spoken. >> but here is the rest of the story as paul harvey would say. reagan immediately picked up the phone, called tip o'neill, he apologized and reports say he said don't worry about it old buddy, politics ends at 6:00, let's talk about it then, don't worry. >> i've got a lot of details but you got the main thrust, which is in washington where everybody gets paid by the hour and they say i must be working real hard, you must work hard or nothing gets done. the greatest thing about that was the output. the best -- i think everybody has recognized the best tax reform bill we've seen in years, all kinds of agreement leading up to the end of the cold war, even tip going over and representing reagan to gorbachev the first time he met him. gorbachev said you're here on
behalf of the president. he said, no, i'm the opposition leader. and gorbachev said to tip, "what's that?" and it was a great line. tip said, "it means we don't disagree about everything." and that's what it's about. we gra about our country and the electorate and each other's offices. you understand it's not about loving each other, it's about getting something done. >> okay. so the universal lament is washington is broken, bipartisanship is dead, you guys bring up chris christie and president obama as an example. i have to say in no disrespect and i think what happened in that moment in the wake of hurricane sandy was a great moment of bipartisanship but it was easier. it was a lot easier to handle disaster where everybody is hurting equally and everybody needs the same help and they work together to make it happen. we're talking about entitlements
and talking about these programs that affect the lives of especially senior citizens and haven't these problems been here for decades and aren't we glossing over bipartisanship in the past a little bit? >> challenges are ahead of us in terms of entitlement. it's not going to be solved by christmas or even this presidency. there has to be ways of controlling the growing costs of health care. it's not that people live too long. we can figure out the math and make it a later retirement age. perhaps a means test. there's a lot of solutions to that. the hard one you point to is health care. when everybody wants the best possible health care the government can afford, is there any way to reduce the costs? and that is the real challenge that isn't about arithmetic, it's about who is willing to serve hard in the health care history for nothing. nobody. everybody wants to get paid from the nurses on up and the attendants and everyone wants to get paid and we have to find a
way to make it efficient. the tax end i think would be solved. if i were the president, i'd say mr. boehner, you have a challenge on your hand. i'll give you six months to come up with a $1 trillion in deductions you can take away from the rich, otherwise the tax rates go up. they could also say to the democrats come up with ways of saving money on the entitlements which don't hurt the beneficiary. you've got six months to do that. take some monkey off the back of both if they can actually focus on the actual challenge, which is fair taxes and real efficiencies in health care delivery instead of just talking, you know ? >> chris, let's go back to the process and you talked about 1983 and the social security deal and the different in atmosphere and the way business got done. we've heard about that and look forward to reading more about it in your book. you bring it to today. do you think the issue today is one of substance, that these issues are harder than they were
back then? or do you think it's one of personalities that can't work or is it one of pros escess, the w the congress functions? why is it more difficult now than it was in '83? >> steve, you know a lot of this yourself. it seems to me one level is you really can't get defeated in a general election right now unless you really screw up with the rape comments and stupid comments. you generally can win a district. your fear is in the primary now, which was not the case before. back in the 80s you got renominated. today the biggest worry on the republican side is you won't get through the primary because you'll be tea partied by somebody who has an anger against the government. that wasn't going on in the 80s. in the 80s it was general elections. part of it is gerrymandering.
tip o'neill could decide what was good himself himself, reagan could decide what was good for himself because they were worried about ideology. today it's not just norquist, it's all the tea party groups. the biggest fear if you're a republican conservative today is not a general election. it's going back to your next tea party meeting after you voted for a tax increase of any kind facing that guy or woman in the back row of the meeting yelling out "you traitor, you sold us out" and everybody cheering. it's a cacophony now rather than individuals arguing each other. tip o'neill and reagan argued in the back room when nobody was watching. they had real ideological differences. they had the strength that comes from true belief. they weren't romneys or someone pretending to be that person. >> so this idea that all we
would have to do is dig up li lincoln or lbj, this with all be different? >> no, i don't think so. there's a lot of bloggers out there we didn't have 30 years ago who really don't focus on governance or governing or running the country. they focus on ideology. when i watch people say i'd just as soon go over the cliff. i say your goals are different from me. a lot of people think their number one goal in life is to win the ideological war at the expense sometimes of the country and that's where i leave those guys to go their own way. >> chris matthews, we love having you. i'll tell you, what this book is going to be huge. americans want to hear stories, they want examples of how politicians, powerful politicians, can work together and make things happen. that's why "lincoln" i think
strikes such a cord with americans and this book will, too. when is it going to come out? >> next christmas. >> next christmas? >> hurry up! >> right now i have a book on sailed called "jack kennedy, elusive hero," number 6. >> we said that. it's huge! >> joe, how do you fix the dress code over there? you look so great but i never know what to expect. you look great over there, expect -- especially -- >> do you call at 4:00 in the morning and say what are you wearing? >> no. i protest by not wearing a suit. >> the crew neck sweater takes 15 years off you. you know that, don't you? >> i love that! i'll wear it tomorrow. >> coming up, we have eve ensler here. she's going to discuss her
latest piece of work, "emotional creature." >> she's fantastic. >> she had another play out. >> yes, she did. we'll be right back. darrell hasn't been able to visit his mom back east in a long time. [ mom ] things are sometimes a little tight. i wasn't able to go to the wedding. [ emily jo ] since darrell couldn't get home, we decided to bring home to him and then just gave him a little bit of help finding his way. ♪ [ laughs ] [ applause ] i love you. i love you. [ male announcer ] get together at the rekindle share event. buy one holiday drink, get one free this thursday through sunday. ♪ ♪ i want candy ♪ ♪ i want candy
playwright. this year sarandon appeared on "30 rock." welcome back to "morning joe." attorn tony award winning playwright eve ensler, creator of the new off broadway play "emotional creature," based on her best seller. it is a pleasure and an honor to you have on the show. >> thank you. i'm very happy to be here. >> tell us about the play. >> the play is based on stories of the struggles of girls around the world, their triumphs and obstacles. and how they win.
>> i like it. is the play only for girls? >> it's for humanity. it a play where girls are on stage but i think we go to many plays where men are on stage and we assume it's for humanity. this is a play where girls are on stage for humanity. >> so we have young girls. tell us about the mandates that are pushed on young girls in american society. >> i think one of the things i was trying to trace having been traveling the world for the last 15 days on a global movement on violence against women and girls. how do i write a play about a girl who is being sold in bulgaria together with girls who are being pressured to be like everybody else in the school in westchester. one of the things that started to become clear is there's a mandate to kind of please everywhere, whether it's that you're serving the fashion centers by starving yourselves
or pleasing the boys by going too fast or faster than you want to go. in africa, pleasing a cultural mandate where you have part of your anatomy literally cut off in serving a tradition. it's like how do girls please and then how do they begin to reshape and discover what they actually really want. >> their value. >> yeah, their value. >> is that the common thread among girl around the world, this sort of need, mandate to please or lack of self-worth, how does confidence play into that because i would think even though you have obviously extremely different cultures being addressed here, there is a common thread. >> no, there is. i think one of the things i see a lot of times when the girls are coming out of the play and boys, girls were saying i never realized i had such value as a girl, i suddenly am happy to be a girl. everybody is brought up not to be girls.
girls are brought up not to be girls, boys are brought up not to be girls, which leads me there must be something very powerful about being a girl. >> what do you mean? >> you're taught from the minute you're boorrn the worst thing y could be is to be like a girl. >> is there a cultural extension between you're a girl, let's please everybody and the seemingly acceptance in many culture of brutality and violence against women? >> absolutely. it's all part of a patriarch al mandate. and i think it's in every culture. we're brought up to believe that we have to in some way please something other than our true voice and our true self. so you end up slowly giving away parts of yourself, parsing out parts of yourself. having been in afghanistan and
having been in scarsdale, i see the ways girls slowly begin to unravel their worth and their power and their central self. one of the things about doing this play first in south africa and then doing it here is to see when girls have a voice and when girls step on stage and tell their stories and feel the right to have their stories, they suddenly begin to have a voice. >> and yet young women as they become, you know, middle aged women in their profession, whatever their profession is, inevitably one of the toughest slurs imposed upon them is they say, oh, she's tough. >> if a man takes control in a business situation, he's tough, they may say he's a bastard but they say it in a positive way. you know what they say, call a woman if a woman is tough in the same way. >> yeah. we were talking the other day about how does a man ask for someone to change the light on the set. they say "could you change the light." the woman goes, you know, you
look really good today, how are you feeling? you know the light over there -- you could never say directly. >> we had that last week. joe demanded these lights were changed for a photo shoot for me. i was in the studio two days later. i demanded they be changed and made fun of them and it made everyone in the room cringe. i was as rude as you and it made everyone cringe. >> no, you were not as rude as me. we were in a rush and somebody changed the yells and i yelled "turn the lights back." a couple days later she goes this light is quietly not right and i said are you going to put the lights on -- >> and she started doing these hand figures. >> i was doing hand puppets. >> that's a perfect example.
>> the play is "emotional creature," now play ting at the romulus linney courtyard center. >> thank you for joining us. >> and i'm going to ask for what i want and i'm not going to apologize for it. >> mcdermott may be best known for his role on the hit show "the practice," but he's also recently enjoyed success as a supporting cast member on "american horror story." you could have access to both tv shows at moment's notice. put it all at your fingertips, brought to you by tivo. ♪ these boots are made for walking ♪
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it seems everyone is talking about the fiscal cliff. here talk talk about is mitt romney's former adviser. what's your take? >> that's just not something that people thought about. >> was that a frame? >> a piece of dry wall. >> can we just show it again because it's funny. >> that's just not something our framers thought about. >> you got to keep the sandbags on those little banners there and his glasses stayed on. i'm brian shactman. stock futures are flat to slowly lower. jobless claim came out at 343,000, down 29,000. retail sales up 0.3%, not a
whole lot of traction on wall street. the fed, more quantitative easing and they're pegging interest rates to unemployment. they won't probably raise rates until unemployment gets below 6.5%. and finally, google maps back on itunes. you can get it on your iphone again. it is all of a sudden the number one free app on all of itunes. o obviously people want that mapping technology back. there's a fight for ecosystems between google and apple and amazon. it's a big blow to apple because they couldn't get the maps done on their own. coming up, more highlights from the 121212 concert and the benefit for hurricane sandy. ♪ ♪ it took a life span with no cell mate, the long way back ♪
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