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tv   The Last Word  MSNBC  December 19, 2012 10:00pm-11:00pm PST

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anyways, you can call it whatever you want to for playing my record. but, if you just want to know what my actual name is, it is kesha, with a dollar sign. >> she has a dollar sign on her thumb there, i am old, i guess i know it. and i am also sorry, kesha, with a dollar sign, i did it multiple times. if you want to find me from the senior section, i will wondering if the pants will be fashionable next year. it is time for "the last word," with lawrence o'donnell, thank you for joining us, have a great night. >> i don't know how john boehner did this. but tonight, john boehner's plan b is being attacked by president obama and rush limbaugh. and in a last word exclusive, the basketball coach who used his post-game press conference
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to talk about something much more important than the game. mass murder in america. >> the fiscal cliff talks, are they stolen again? >> i hope the president will get serious soon. >> i have met them at least half way. >> john boehner's so-called plan b. >> what is the strategy for plan b? >> make sense of what just happened. >> they're thinking about voting for, raising taxes. >> except for household income above a million. >> but they will reject spending cuts. >> the president will have a decision to make. >> that defies logic. >> this is baffling. >> grover norquist has given his blessing, that defies logic. >> people across america thought we were behaving like adults. >> stay classy, gop. >> if this does nothing, it will give us perspective. >> it is announcing a task force
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on guns. >> violence that we cannot accept as routine. >> president obama puts joe biden in charge of a task force. >> we know what we have to do. >> this is not a washington commission. >> he supports reinstating a ban on assault weapons. >> weapons of war do not belong on our streets. >> limiting high-capacity magazines. >> the nra is going to be holding a news conference. >> there is going to be an announcement made. >> the nra is prepared to offer meaningful contributions. >> it is very hard to determine what they mean. >> teachers are not law enforcement. >> we have all the information. >> this is not some washington commission. >> we have all the studies. >> time is of the essence. >> we have to do something, the american people want us to do
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something. >> it is hard out there, being a boehner. john boehner has gone from refusing to consider any tax rate increase. any tax rate increase at all to refusing to consider any tax rate increase without spending cuts attached to it. to now asking his members to pass a tax rate increase without any spending cuts attached to it. john boehner's plan b, which he wants to bring to a vote tomorrow, is simply a tax increase on incomes over a million dollars. nothing else. that is it. here was president obama's reaction today. >> if you look at what the speaker has proposed, he has conceded that income tax rates should go up. except right now he only wants to have them go up for millionaires. if you're making $900,000, somehow he thinks that you can't afford to pay a little more in taxes. but the principle that rates are need to go up, he has conceded.
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>> that proved to rush limbaugh that president obama now has exactly what he wants. >> if you look at what the speaker has proposed, he has conceded. >> there it is, there is the word. >> income tax rates should go up. >> there it is, stop the tape. that is what this has all been about. he has wanted the republicans to concede tax cuts for the rich caused all of these problems. cue that back up to the top. the speaker has conceded income tax rates should go up. that is exactly what he wants. >> rush limbaugh is not the only conservative attacking the plan b, conservative political action groups are calling for house republicans to mutiny. from the heritage foundation, allowing a tax increase to hit a certain segment of americans in small business is not a solution. and constitute a clear path towards conservatives on their
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principles. heritage opposes plan b and will include it as a key vote on our legislative score card. and from the club for growth, there is this, the club for growth urges all house members to vote no on the rule for the so-called plan b tax consideration of the bill, as scheduled for later this week. the vote on the rule will be included in the club's 2012 congressional score card. and from grover norquist, the anti-tax superman, what rhetorical heights did grover norquist have to go to to be heard above the sound of rush limbaugh and the club for growth, and their reaction to this increase? what flourish was grover able to come up with to make his opposition stand out, to make his opposition be the most important opposition? are you sitting down? no, no, no, you have to sit down. grover norquist has come out in
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support of john boehner's tax increase on incomes over a million dollars. and he has done it by claiming it is not a tax increase. this legislation, popularly known as plan b, permanently prevents a tax increase on families making less than a million per year, considering this tax bill contains no tax increases of any kind. in fact, it permanently prevents them, americans for tax reform will not consider a vote for this measure a violation of the taxpayer protection pledge. and so grover norquist has officially surrendered. but even with grover norquist supporting him, john boehner is sounding like a man who has not yet sold his tax increase to his republican members. >> good afternoon everyone. republicans continue to work toward avoiding the fiscal cliff. the president's office of $1.3 trillion in revenues and $850
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billion in spending reductions fails to meet the test that the president promised the american people, a balanced approach. and i hope that the president will get serious soon about providing and working with us on a balanced approach. tomorrow, the house will pass legislation to make permanent tax relief for nearly every american. 99.81% of the american people. then the president will have a decision to make. he can call on senate democrats to pass that bill, or he can be responsible for the largest tax increase in american history. >> nancy pelosi rushed to the cameras immediately after john boehner to offer this review. >> i think what we saw here earlier was really an act of desperation, a person who didn't have any votes, any questions? >> do you have any anticipation on voting for plan b?
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>> plan b will not pass because of democratic votes. >> joining me now, robert reich, and howard dean, dnc chairman. now i think we'll all agree that president obama is a pretty smart guy. but i want you to listen to him trying to figure out the logic of plan b, let's listen to that. >> let's think about the logic for a second. they're thinking about voting for raising taxes, at least on folks over a million, which they say they don't want to do. but they're going to reject spending cuts that they say they do want to do. that defies logic. there is no explanation for that. >> professor reisch, you're very >> let's think about the logic
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for a second. they're thinking about voting for raising taxes, at least on folks over a million, which they say they don't want to do. but they're going to reject spending cuts that they say they do want to do. that defies logic. there is no explanation for that. >> professor reisch, you're very good with logic, can you please help the president and me figure out the logic of this? >> there is no logic here, there is a tactical approach that will frankly fail, because boehner is not going to get republicans or democrats for this. we'll get closer and closer to the fiscal cliff. the only alternative out there is proposed by the president. and actually, i think going over the cliff is probably better. >> governor dean, the white house has done what it needs to do on this, issued a veto threat.
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they said if the president were presented with the house amendment, he would veto this legislation. so now, governor dean, john boehner is asking his members to vote on something that a president has said he would veto if it were by some miracle made it through the senate, which it wouldn't. it is a purely academic vote that john boehner is asking for, and it happens to be a tax increase. how do you ask republicans to cast that vote? >> yeah, this is silly. it is a waste of everybody's time. he is hoping i think, to get credit somehow for the notion that the republicans are not the party of millionaires. and this is not going to work. this is the kind of stuff that annoys american voters. these guys are getting paid a decent standard by most voters, and they're not doing any work.
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it just makes people mad, this is posturing, it is silly, i actually agree with bob reich, i think the most sensible thing is to go over the curve, you will get a fair reduction and tax curve, they're just only the defense cuts for one second -- a couple of weeks ago they ordered new uniforms for all the drivers in the military. i think we can cut defense. >> this situation is creating interesting dynamics. paul ryan has issued a statement saying he will vote yes on this. it says, chairman ryan will continue to work to stop tax hikes. chairman paul ryan's thought is that it meets that criteria. robert reich, there is paul ryan, suddenly now he is forced to say he is in favor of this one. and he may find himself the thing tomorrow he is in favor of is unable to be brought to a
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vote in the house if john boehner can't round up those votes. >> absolutely, i mean, if you have grover norquist and you have paul ryan saying that this is okay for republicans. it is okay to raise taxes over a million dollars. it is not okay to raise taxes over 250 million, what is the principle here? what are we trying to uncover as the traditional republicanism, particularly when there is no hint on the table. i mean, there is nothing there. there is no principle on the table. i don't know how they can say with a straight face, not only to republicans and to independent america, we have a principled position with regard to deficit reduction and avoiding the fiscal cliff. >> governor dean, through a different approach, you have ended up in basic agreement with
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"the wall street journal," they're saying in their approach, just go off the cliff. that is better than anything john boehner is proposing, and better that anything you're going to get in the compromise. >> well, i rarely agree with anything on the opinion pages of "the wall street journal." but i'm a deficit hawk, as a progressive, i know that social programs can only be sustained in the long-term if you have a balanced budget. which is what bill clinton and his folks did. so if you really want to be serious about this, you have to attack the deficit. this is the fairest way to attack the deficit of any system i have seen in terms of taxes. in terms of cuts evenly spread. there are bad cuts there i don't like as a progressive in human services. but everybody is going to have
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some sacrifice. and i think going over the fiscal cliff is the fairest sacrifice, and it will also take a bite out of the deficit, which everybody should like. >> i have a slightly different take on it. i agree with howard dean's the sentiment we need to go over the fiscal cliff, i agree with that. but not the final solution. democrats need to be back with a middle class tax cut. >> right, robert reich and howard dean, thank you for joining us tonight. thanks. coming up, it really is different this time. president obama announced today he would propose new legislation to reduce gun violence. and people are standing up around the country to say enough is enough. we'll be joined by the basketball coach who used his post-game press conference to ask president obama and john boehner to do something about this tragic american way of death. mass murder. and later, is president obama really considering a cut in social security benefits? and in the rewrite tonight, what would ronald reagan do? specifically, what would reagan do about the bill senator diane feinstein plans to introduce banning assault weapons? the answer will surprise today's republicans who claim to worship ronald reagan, and know almost nothing about him.
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wayne lapierre and the blood-drenched lobbyists at the nra hate joe biden. they just hate him. because 20 years ago when he was chairman of the senate committee, joe biden helped push gun control legislation through the senate. what the nra never mentions is that that gun control legislation was supported by nra member and former president, ronald reagan. that is coming up. this time, it really is ♪
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different. >> the fact that this problem is complexed can no longer be an excuse for doing nothing. the fact that we can't prevent every act of violence doesn't mean we can't steadily reduce the violence, and prevent the very worst violence. that is why i have asked the vice president to lead an effort that includes members of my cabinet, and outside organizations to come up with a set of concrete proposals no later than january. >> five days after the shooting massacre at sandy hook elementary school left 20 children and 6 teachers dead, today president obama announced his administration's plan to pursue massacre-control
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legislation. >> as soon as we get those recommendations, i will be putting forward very specific proposals. i will be talking about them in my state of the union, and we will be working with interested members of congress to try to get something done. >> the president described specific measures that he would support. >> a majority of americans support banning the sale of military-style assault weapons. a majority of americans support banning the sale of high-capacity ammunition clips. a majority of americans support laws requiring background checks before all gun purchases. i urge the new congress to hold votes on these measures next year in a timely manner. >> the president's initiative will be led by vice president joe biden. in 2008, the national rifle association warned that joe
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biden will be the most anti-gun vice president in american history. >> the nra is -- an organization that has members who are mothers and fathers. and i would expect that they have been impacted by this, as well. and hopefully they will do some self reflection. there is a big chunk of space between what -- you know, the second amendment means and having no rules at all. and that space is what joe is going to be working on to try to identify where we can find some common ground. >> joining me now, msnbc's crystal ball. crystal, i'm hoping that there is one nra prediction that will come true, and that is that joe biden will be the most anti-gun vice president in history. which, by the way, there is no competition for. we never had an anti-vice president. but i'll read you the things the nra said in 2008 about joe
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biden. few in the senate have as much experience as joe biden in attacking our right to keep and bear arms. joe biden has voted for an actively pushed major anti-gun bills's including those banning semiautomatic firearms, banning hunting, sporting and self-defense ammunition, banning magazines holding more than ten rounds, and imposing background checks on gun sales, that sounds like a guy the president should turn to. >> what a radical, can you believe those things he supported? i think joe biden is a very strong choice to head this task force. i am a little bit concerned about the time frame, though, frankly. i think we're seeing polls that show a majority of americans for the first time in a long time, supporting stricter gun control. supporting majority, supporting
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these basic common sense rules. which actually that has been the case for a while. but i'm just concerned that right now is when the pressure and the heat is on the nra. is on the republican members of congress. is on people like joe manchin, to actually do something. and the longer that we wait to have a task force and have recommendations and push something forward here in the state of the union, the less pressure there is going to continue to be. maybe i'm wrong, maybe this is a mounting wave. but based on what we've seen in past initiatives, there is an initiative to do something, and then the focus goes elsewhere. so i think the sooner they can put those recommendations out the better position we would actually be in. >> well, the problem is the calendar here and exactly where
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we are in it. the senate is not going to be in session. they have to get the next congress sworn in to session. all the new committees have to take their position, joe biden used to run the committee that has to handle this. that is why he is going to be in a position to have a great head start on it. but when the president says i want to start moving at the end of january at the latest. that is the earliest legislatively, that you could move. you have to get past inauguration. it will sound like a long time to people, but i don't see any calendar alternative to moving, getting anything started before the last week of january. >> that is what was significant about the president's remarks today. he laid down a marker. but more importantly he said i think this is going to be in the state of the union. everybody knows, even if your not a political junky, the state of the union is the big speech the president gives. that and the inaugural address are the only speeches that were really thought of in the
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constitution and over the years, they have shifted from being a relatively formalistic sort of procedural type of addresses to being times when we understand exactly what is on the agenda of the president. and there is no more important state of the union than in the first one after a re-election. so to me, what he laid down today was very clearly saying we will not re lent. we will not let this go by the way of the media news cycle. we are going to put this front and center in the state of the union. put pressure on both parties. and i think that is significant, lawrence. >> i want to watch one question in the press conference today about this from jake tapper. >> this is not the first issue, the first incident, of horrific gun violence of your four years. where have you been? >> well, here is where i have
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been, jake. i have been president of the united states dealing with the worst economic crisis since the great depression. an auto industry on the verge of collapse. two wars. i don't think i have been on vacation. and so -- you know, i think all of us have to do some reflection on how we prioritize what we do here in washington. and as i said on sunday, this should be a wake-up call for all of us to say that if we are not getting right the need to keep our children safe, then nothing else matters. >> now, am i the only one who is bothered by the way that question was asked? to where have you been? now listen if i was in that room asking questions under pressure, i would probably phrase things badly all the time. but i have to say i just found it to be about the worst possible way you could phrase it. we know what the president does for a living and we know what he has been doing for his time. i think it is perfectly reasonable to ask why haven't you been moved before. but crystal, there was something about the phrasing that threw me? was it how self-righteous? >> i don't want to get up on a
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high horse? but it was odd. >> it was odd, and frankly i don't think it was designed to get information. it was an obnoxious question. and the real answer is, we tend to blame politicians for all of our problems, where has the focus been on this issue or that issue? why aren't they talking about this issue or that issue? it comes from us, they still respond to what the public wants. that is why there is a response on this issue, so if we want something to happen, yes, it is up to the president to lead. but we have to push the politicians and the corporations and the nra and shame them. >> thank you for joining us. >> thanks lawrence. coming up, the basketball coach who used his post-game press conference in ohio to ask john boehner to do the right things on guns. and in the rewrite, republicans don't like to ask themselves what would jesus do? because so often in issues
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involving the poor, they find themselves opposing what jesus would do. but why do not they ask, what would ronald reagan do? because today's republicans would discover they agree with ronald reagan on next to nothing. including gun control. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms. but if you have arthritis, staying active can be difficult. prescription celebrex can help relieve arthritis pain so your body can stay in motion. because just one 200mg celebrex a day can provide 24 hour relief for many with arthritis pain and inflammation. plus, in clinical studies, celebrex is proven to improve daily physical function so moving is easier. celebrex can be taken with or without food. and it's not a narcotic. you and your doctor should balance the benefits with the risks. all prescription nsaids, like celebrex, ibuprofen,
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a college basketball coach used his moment in the limelight this week to speak from the heart about protecting our children from gun violence. he will join me next in an exclusive interview. [ female announcer ] research suggests cell health
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designed for women's health concerns as we age. it has 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day 50+. today, there were four more funerals in newtown, connecticut, more than 300 people attended the funeral of first grade teacher, victoria soto, who was murdered protecting her students. 7-year-old daniel barden wanted to be a fireman when he grew up. today, hundreds of firefighters lined up outside the church where his funeral was held. 6-year-old charlotte bacon was remembered as a bubbly child who loved animals and the color pink. 6-year-old carolyn previdi also loved pink, and so today at her memorial service family and friends wore that color in her honor, her obituary wrote
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carolyn loved to draw and dance. her smile brought happiness to everyone she touched. here is more of what president obama had to say today about his plan to reduce gun violence. >> and i'm not going to be able to do it by myself. ultimately, if this effort is to succeed it is going to require the help of the american people. it is going to require all of you. if we're going to change things it is going to take a wave of americans, mothers and fathers, daughters and sons, pastors, law enforcement, mental health professionals, and yes, gun owners standing up and saying enough's on behalf of our kids. >> standing up tonight, americans standing up and saying enough. in seminole, florida, a pawn shop owner said he could no longer profit from instruments of death and removed all the firearms from his store, telling "the tampa bay times" conscience
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wins over guns. and winthrop coach, pat kelsey, had one more thing he wanted to say new the last thing i wanted to say is i'm really, really lucky because i'm going to get on an eight-hour bus ride and arrive in rock hill, south carolina, and walk in my house. i'm going to walk up the stairs, into two pink rooms with a 5-year-old and a 4-year-old laying in that pink room. and a bunch of teddy bears. and i'm going to give them the biggest hug and kiss i have ever given them. and there are 20 families in new port, connecticut, walking into a pink room with nobody laying in those beds, and it is tragic. and i don't know what needs to be done. i'm not smart enough to know what needs to be done, i know this country has issues. is it a gun issue or mental health issue? or is it a society that understands that our families
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are important. i didn't vote for president obama, he is my president, my leader, i need him to step up. the speaker of the house, john boehner, he needs to step up, parents, teachers, rabbis, priests, coaches. everybody needs to step up. this has to be a time for change. and i know this microphone is powerful right now because we're playing the fourth best team in the country. i wouldn't have a microphone like this the rest of my year, maybe the rest of my life. and i'm going to be an agent of change for the kids i coach, the girls i get to raise. hopefully things start to change, because it is really disappointing. i'm proud to grow up in america, i'm proud to say i'm part of the greatest country ever. and that has to stay that way. and it will stay that way if we change, but we have to change. >> joining me now for an exclusive interview, coach pat
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kelsey, coach, i'm very glad to give you a national microphone again on this subject. when did you decide that you were going to say that in your press conference? >> you know, i have been asked that question a lot over the last 24 hours. and like all americans, my world came to a screeching halt on late friday morning. we were on our way to athens, >> you know, i have been asked that question a lot over the last 24 hours. and like all americans, my world came to a screeching halt on late friday morning. we were on our way to athens, ohio, up i-77 and our bus broke down on the side of the highway, which was a whole other story. and a couple of other kids came up to say check twitter, there is a school shooting. i'm heart just sunk, you're thinking a high school, or something like that.
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which is just as bad, don't get me wrong, when we found on it 15, 20 minutes later when one of my assistant coaches just said coach, it is worse than you think. there are 20 kids dead. it is a kindergarten class. it is 5 and 6-year-olds. and everything came to a screeching halt. there was a shot up my spine, i froze in my tracks. i couldn't move, and i got unbelievably emotional. and i think the entire -- not only the entire world, but obviously the entire american public had the same sentiments, that i did. it struck home especially with me, i have a 5 and a 4-year-old, and four hours prior i was at a breakfast table with my family. my wife put pancakes in front of them. they were drawing pictures for me that i could take on the road during a five-day road trip where we had to play two games.
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i was not going to see them for a while. they were on their way to school. they were marking off their christmas countdown to christmas eve. and when i sat there all i could think about were those 20 families that had those same breakfasts that morning with their 4, 5 and 6-year-olds. and they had the same pictures drawn for them and the same hershey kisses and smiley faces on their pancakes. and the next time they saw their children, they were identifying their bodies. and i couldn't shake it. i couldn't stop thinking about it. we had two big-time games to get ready for. ohio university, which we won and played very well, and ohio state where we didn't win but played well. but every second when we were preparing for the game, that is all i could think about. and when i walked into the press
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conference, at ohio state, i struck me. we're not ohio state, not the big ten or the fourth best team in the country. our press conferences have nearly 20 cameras and reporters, i had more cameras maybe than i'll ever have staring at me for the rest of my life. it struck me they talked about the game, tell us about shawn thomas, how did you hold them to 20 points? i answered the question, that is my job. at the very end they asked me if i had anything else. it was almost divine intervention. and i said yes, you know what? i do have something else. i recognized the power of the microphone. if said what was in my heart, it was emotional, the last couple of days i have been overwhelmed over the last 18 to 20 hours over the hundreds and hundreds of e-mails that i received, and texts, and apps, on twitter,
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from people i never met before saying coach, i really appreciate what you said. you said exactly what i'm thinking. and i'm not anything great for having said it. i just had the opportunity and i had that microphone and spoke from my heart. an american citizen, a kid that grew up in what i think is the greatest country in the history of civilization. and i'm scared that my little girls are going to grow up in the great -- they're not going to grow up in the society i know. i'm ashamed to admit. maybe it is my civic duty to be more responsible and to do my homework to understand what the issues are. i don't know yet. i am just scared, about deteriorating, the basic core values of what is right and wrong in the fabric of american society. and i'm not the type that is going to push my religion on anybody else. but i know one thing, there was somebody that walked 2,000 years ago that set the ultimate example of how to live and treat people and how to live. and that is what example i follow. and if we follow that example i think we'll be right with the
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world. >> pat kelsey, i think we're speaking with the audience tonight. i think we strongly believe you performed your civic duty nobly when you decided to speak out on this. thank you very much, for joining us tonight, coach. >> thank you for having me. coming up in the rewrite, what newt gingrich says about gun violence and ronald reagan. the capital one cash rewards card
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newt gingrich, versus ronald reagan. next in the rewrite. ronald reagan used to say it [ loud party sounds ]
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ronald reagan used to say it is not what they don't know that is so frightening, it is what they know is wrong. >> they were the keys to ronald reagan's greatness as an morning leader. ronald reagan and bush in 1980. reagan. >> the man we know as ronald reagan, who was sunny and optimistic, his charisma cured the malaise. >> i identify myself as a reagan conservative. it was simple. he was magical. >> over three decades have passed since ronald reagan was elected to the white house. yet the impact of his leadership is still evident today. >> as i have reported in this space before, there is no republican who republicans lie about more than ronald reagan.
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they refer the way to reagan the way bible refers to god, as the font of all wisdom. but republicans never actually quote reagan anymore, because they have rewritten him to the point that reagan wouldn't recognize his party. which, by the way, was the second political party that reagan belonged to. the actor ronald reagan was a democrat when he was president of the labor union representing actors, but he switched on the way to becoming president of the united states. ronald reagan didn't like taxes but he was willing to raise them when necessary, which is why he signed the then biggest tax increase in california history when he was governor. and why he raised taxes 11 times as president. yes, 11 times. there is now no republican who thinks it is ever necessary to raise tax rates. not one republican.
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is a reaganite on taxes. >> i am a reaganite, i'm proud to be a reaganite. >> no, you're not, newt, newt gingrich is the father of republican opposition to all tax increases all the time. all republicans are now gingrichites, not reaganites, which brings us to the message of the day. banning guns, taxes, all of what reagan supported. as governor reagan signed a california law that established a 15-day waiting period and was very proud of the thousands of handgun sales that were prevented by that waiting period which allowed authorities to block sales to some buyers. unlike newt gingrich, ronald reagan had his own close encounter, too close encounter with a deranged young man spraying bullets. as president reagan left the washington hilton one day, shots rang out hitting a washington
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police officer, thomas delahante in the neck, the president's press secretary, jim brady, was shot in the forehead. the bullet passed through his brain, leaving an exit wound in the back of his head. in 1991, president reagan told a story about his shooting. he wrote it supporting the brady bill, named after jim brady which imposed a national waiting period for purchasing handguns. i was lucky, wrote president reagan. the bullet that hit me bounced off a rib, and lodged in my lung. an inch from my heart. it was a very close call. twice they could not find my pulse. the last time congress considered an assault weapons ban, former president reagan supported it even though it was introduced by democratic senator diane feinstein and was opposed by most republicans. reagan co-wrote a letter with
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former presidents carter and ford to all members of the house of representatives, urging them to support "a ban on the domestic manufacture of military-style assault weapons." the three former presidents, one democrat, and two republicans said "this is a matter of vital importance to the public safety." but most republicans didn't think so. in the end, the vote in the house could not have been closer. 216 in favor, 214 opposed. two votes. two house members said the reason they voted for the bill was ronald reagan. republican congressman scott klug opposed the assault weapons ban right up until the day before the vote. but then he got a handwritten note from president reagan. dear scott, as a longtime gun owner and supporter of the right to bear arms, i too, have carefully thought about this issue.
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i am convinced that the limitations imposed in this bill are absolutely necessary. i know there is heavy pressure on you to go the other way but i strongly urge you to join me in supporting this bill. it must be passed. sincerely, ronald reagan. richard sweat, a new hampshire democratic congressman said ronald reagan turned his vote to a yes. he was then attacked by the gun lobby and he lost his re-election campaign in 1994. we know what president reagan would be saying today if he were still with us. he would support diane feinstein's bill just like he did in 1994. the reaganite position is to support feinstein's assault weapons ban. but self proclaimed reaganite newt gingrich has not been talking about the assault weapons ban in the aftermath of the killing of children and women in newtown, connecticut.
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newt gingrich doesn't blame the easy availability of assault weapons in this country for the murder of 26 at the sandy hook elementary school. he blames this. >> an anti-religious secular bureaucracy, and secular judiciary, seeking to drive god out of public life. >> newt gingrich was one of the members of congress who received that letter in 1994 co-signed by president reagan, asking him to vote yes on a ban on the domestic manufacture of military-style assault weapons. and newt gingrich voted no. there are many words i can think of that accurately describe newt gingrich, and yes, some of them are positive. but when newt gingrich calls himself a reaganite, there is only one word. liar. >> i am a reaganite, i am proud to be a reaganite, i'm proud to be a reaganite, i'm proud to be a reaganite.
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one of the things that the president is considering in a possible deficit reduction deal with john boehner is a reduction in the annual cost of living increases in social security benefits. congressman jim mcdermott says reducing cost of living adjustments as a social security benefit deal that cuts medicare/medicaid benefits, i will oppose it. but there is at least one house
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democrat ready to support the president if he agrees to this change. >> do you consider that a benefit cut? >> no, i don't, i consider it a strengthening, but that is neither here or there. >> joining me now is bob greenstein, bob, i just want the audience to know that there is nobody in washington who has advocated more strongly for liberal policies, than you have. we'll continue this conversation on our website, but give me your two-minute brief on this subject. >> lawrence, this is a complex subject. on the one hand, this alternative way of measuring inflation is a little bit more accurate. in general, but it is not clear that it is more accurate for the elderly. the proposal is to use this new method, not only for social security, but for all benefit programs with cost of living
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adjustments and for the tax code. it ultimately raises as much in revenue as it saves from lower cost of living adjustments. how much lower? about 3/10th of a percentage point a year, what does that mean? so if you had a thousand dollars a month social security benefit, when there was inflation, instead of going to 1,030, it would go to seven, over the years it accumulates, and if you're low on the income scale as you get older and older this becomes a problem. so where i come out on it is, this is worth considering, but only, only under three conditions, number one, it must be done by provisions that protect the very old and the poor. the president has said he is going to try and get the protections if it is in the final plan. it is unclear how republicans