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tv   The Daily Rundown  MSNBC  May 1, 2014 6:00am-7:01am PDT

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>> stop it! you're such a pervert. you're a sick freaking pervert. you need to go get some therapy. i'm serious. >> i learned coming in at 8:00 is awesome. >> and you had a baby. >> i had time to have a baby before i came on. >> 11 years, t.j.'s a saint. congratulations to him. >> to put up with the joking around. what do you like? >> i learned that like you, i'm sick of 11 years of tripping in to pay his salary. i'm tired of it. >> he's trying to get minimum wage. maybe next year. it's "way too early," it's "morning joe." stick around, we have chuck todd with "the daily rundown." thanks for your patience. >> my billionaire is better than your billionaire. that's the sand box synopsis of the campaign money fight lately.
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but no there's a new push in congress to clean things up with a constitutional amendment. we'll talk to its author, new mexico senator tom udall. and on the flip side, ralph nader is here. he explains why he wants a smart billionaire, as opposed to the dumb ones, to run for president. and why he's so against another clinton presidency. >> also this morning, before bridgegate blew up, why was chris christies only recent republican to find statewide success in the guaarden state? his mentor, former governor tom cane is here on the future of his party and one-time protege. good morning from washington, it's thursday, it's may day around the world. may 1st here in the united states, 2014. as you know, may day is the big labor day around the world, just not here in the united states. we start with new details on the record breaking rain and devastating floods that are impacting millions of americans this morning. the latest spring storm system flooded states from the plains to the deep south and now up
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into the mid-atlantic region. neighborhoods outside of philadelphia recorded almost 7 inches of rain overnight. flooding in the florida panhandle might have caused a gas explosion at a jail. the blast shook the ground, killed two people and injured 250 people. opinions cola got more than 9 inches of rain overnight on top of what they had already gotten the day before. look at this scene in baltimore this morning where two days of heavy rain opened up a mass of sinkhole. this is baltimore, not florida, usually more known for sinkholes. cars dropped 75 under the rail tunnel. dulles recorded the most rain ever in a single day. flooding has forced evacuations in laurel, maryland and stranded
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drivers were stilli being rescud this morning. the forecast calls for another day of heavy rain but this time farther north, new england. there will be rain in much of florida. msnbc will have updates throughout the day on conditions up and down the east coast. and, yes, there's a lot of travel issues. now my first read of the morning. if you want to talk to anyone in washington on both sides of the wall, nearly all of them will admit this fact -- the current campaign finance system in america is broken. the debate, though, of how to fix it and how serious people are about fixing it is what's missing. all too often it seems like lawmakers are just using the issue to score political points. on wednesday senators gathered for a hearing on so-called bark money, that's the kind of unregular litted campaign dollars that have been flooding into campaigns as of late.
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one of the primary goals for democrats in 2014 is to try to lift the curtain on all that cash and put the spotlight on the people behind it, particularly folks like the koch brothers. >> the ability to be heard is different than the ability to drown out every other point of view using modern technology simply because you have a lot more money than somebody else who has an equally valid view. >> the first amendment doesn't allow us to silence those who oppose us. that applies to corporations, labor unions, mr. soros and the koch family. it applies to everyone. >> so what you have here is basically an argument over billionaires. for democrats the issue is the koch brothers. for republicans, it's people like, say, mayor michael blo bloomberg or you heard soros's name there. blo bloomberg just announced he's
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spending another $50 million to push his pet issue of guns. and for the koch brothers, one in five republicans gave them a favorable rating, while one in three democrats did not. bloomberg got most of his support from democrats, while nearly 30% of republicans and independents gave him a negative rating. it's still an open question as to whether it's a winning strategy to focus on the men instead of the money. the problem for advocates of campaign finance reform is that the supreme court has now ruled twice on the side of looser regulations, ruling that donations do amount to free speech, something that former supreme court justice john paul stevens vehemently opposed while testifying on capitol hill yesterday. >> while money is used to finance speech, money is not speech. speech is only one of the activities that are financed by campaign contributions and
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expenditures. >> nevertheless, there's growing acknowledgement within the campaign finance movement that to get something done, you're going to have to work around the court decisions. so that means you either focus on laws that can force greater disclosure or push a constitutional amendment. as to the former, there is press didn't for proposed legislation that would require instant disclosure. it's an idea that's actually been supported by high-profile republicans back in the 90s, including mitch mcconnell. in fact, in 2000, he worked with mcconnell to expan dd disclosur. >> we ought to at least include the major political players in america. why would a little disclosure be better than a lot of disclosure? >> at the time they were just talking about individual federal contributions and disclosure. they weren't talking about the
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association, everything has changed in the rules and everything is expon eng-- exponentially bigger. >> we learned yesterday that democrats will seek to limit the amount of contributions in the amount that can be spent by candidates on their behalf. so which route is the best? senator udall, good morning to you, sir. >> good morning, chuck. good to be with you this morning. >> let's talk about the constitutional process. we node -- know amending the constitution could take a decade. this 28th amendment, however it would end up being, how would it read? >> first of all, it would read buckley versus vallejo, which is the supreme court decision in
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1976. we would reverse that and give the power back to the congress and back to the state legislatures and the governors to regulate campaign finance reform. so basically what we're doing is going around the court because we believe that they have misinterpreted the first amendment of the constitution. >> but in this case you are saying that there's -- the court obviously has decided that money is speech, so in order to get the power to regulate it, you need a constitutional amendment. >> yeah. there's no way under that ruling, the early ruling said money is speech. basically that opens the flood gates. you have billionaires who are able to completely overwhelm the process and the thing about my amendment is it's a bipartisan amendment. it started with ted stevens in 1983, it been on the floor a number of times. we've had republican support, democratic support. sometimes republicans have led,
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other times democrats. the important this evening heng rescue our democracy. what i think we're seeing is a cancer, this dark money, as you called it, eating away at the system and an unbalanced amount of money drowning out the voices of ordinary citizens. >> you pointed out one of my pet peeves is the part that seems to be loses the money game is the one that wants to do reform. right now the democrats are fearful because the republicans seem to be finding more billionaires rather than the democrats here. how do you make this bipartisan? because you -- in the past you cited previous republicans that have been for things like this. but in this day and age, how do you make it bipartisan? >> well, i think the best thing to do is talk about the merits rather than blame on one side or another and say look what's happening to our democracy.
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these huge amounts of money, much of it or a significant amount of it we don't even know who the donors are. it's hidden in the campaign finance system that we have now that was created by the supreme court opinion. so if we can get people to folks on the merits, i think they will realize that our democracy is hurting, it's undermining our democracy and it's hurting the ability of average citizens to participate and be involved. i've always thought, chuck, that a democracy is a marketplace of ideas and citizens should have the most say rather than the billionaires. >> well, let's talk about disclosure. a constitutional amendment could take years. it's got to go through the various procedures of getting -- of actually making it into the constitution. so let's talk about disclosure. you saw i played former clips of mitch mcconnell back in 2000 when he was not a big proponent
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of mccain-feingold. there are no limits on the amount of money you can give to a campaign, whether it's a super pac. we can claim there are limits but they don't really exist because of the way the system works. so why not just go and do an instant disclosure bill that would encompass everybody? 501 c 3s, 4s, superpacs, and bring all that money into the system? >> i think that would be helpful and i would be very support i of th -- supportive of that. the last couple of election sykes cycles, we have seen that offered. but the republicans have reversed their stance where they were for disclosure. now it appears they don't want the kind of disclosure that is as sweeping as you're talking about. >> well, i guess my question is where is that bill? why not put that out there? because that's the -- the supreme court was essentially asking for a disclosure bill in
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the decisions that they've been writing on the two campaign finance cases. >> well, as i said, we have put that out there. one of the senators from the northeast, sheldon white house was a leader on that. the bill was out there. i don't think we got more than within or two republican votes, if any, on it. so it's been out there the last couple of election cycles but i think the thing that is going to get at the core problem, which is the big money drowning out the voices of ordinary citizens, that's going to happen with a constitutional amendment reversing what the supreme court has done talking about money is speech and the first amendment implicated. >> let me ask the last question here. how do you make the public care? i say this in a bit of a cynical way. campaign finance issues hard to make persuadable arguments. very hard to fire up american
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citizens on that issue. how do you make the public care about that issue? >> i think the public does care. i think the public is angry. if you go out and ask them now is your democracy working, are your people in washington standing up for you and are they on your side? i think in many cases the people know that the system is rigged to the big interest, to the special interest, to the people that have the most money. so it's just framing it in a way, like this constitutional amendment, that will allow them to rally around it and really to move forward in terms of changing this cancer, getting rid of this cancer on a democracy. >> the key sponsor behind this constitutional amendment, thanks for your time. >> pleasure. >> much more on tdr ahead. much more on the clippers controversy. possibly a big ballot for a member of congress.
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and why chris christie's party is struggling to find statewide success. before a quick break, a look at today's politics planner. right now in deer born. >> brodie: michigan, ford is announcing ma fields. back with moe tdr in 180 seconds. in the words of larry sanders, go flip it. add vanishing deductible from nationwide insurance and get $100 off for every year of safe driving. we put members first. join the nation. ♪ nationwide is on your side
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in recent years it's been the southern front in the northeast narrative of the demise of rockefeller republicans. brid
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bridgegate -- chris christie is only one republican to serve more than one term. when christie appointed his republican attorney general last year to the seat left vacant by frank lautenberg's daeeath, jef was the first republican in the senate in decades. republicans have voted a republic republican for decades. democrats control half of new jersey's delegation. but the last time new jersey went truly red in a presidential election was when george h.w. bush beat mike dukakis in 1988. it federally is a blue state, even if competitive on state elections.
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one big explanation is the changing face of elections. since then the latino population has shot up 39% of new jersey, making it one of the fastest growing in the nation. hispanics outnumber african-americans to become the state's largest minority group. now 32% of new jersey's population is not white, either african-american or hispanic or asian. 21 are foreign born. christie blatantly bragged about winning votes from a diverse crowd. >> i didn't have, you know, any kind of significant latino support in 2009. we won the latino vote last night. now find another republican in america who has won the latino vote lately. >> christie's political mentor, the man he shadowed as an
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aspiring governor himself, two-term governor tom kean won by the largest majority ever recorded, won all by 564 of the 567 municipalities. the republican record in new jersey for statewide success has been pretty bleak. whether he finds on-ramp back to national contention, republicans can they go to a better term somewhere down the turnpike and actually find success again? who better to ask than former new jersey governor tom kean. good morning to you, sir. >> good morning, chuck. >> when i first covering politics, new jersey was a swing state. it was thought of as america's largest suburb and how it went so went america. now it's no longer part of that swing state conversation in presidential politics. what's happened? is it only demographics that
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explain this? what's happened to your party in the state of new jersey when it comes to federal elections? >> well, it's not just demographics. in federal elections, one thing that's a problem is that the national party doesn't campaign in new jersey anymore. they write it off. and i remember back when times you were talking about, we thought it was a swing state and the presidential candidate would spend a lot of time in new jersey, a lot of money and ads and everything else. >> it's convenient to new york city when they're raising money. it wouldn't take them much to go through a tunnel or across a br bridge, right? >> and they're right across new york, too. you wouldn't put all that money in television to get new jersey, why are you spending that money? why not spend it in ohio in a state that's less expensive and you have a better chance of winning. the right candidate, the republican party is ready to spend the time and the money in new jersey, they can still carry it. >> is it another question folks might assume for why republicans have walked away from new
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jersey? is it simply too liberal on social issues from where the republican party is today? >> that's a good question. maybe. but i don't like the word liberal. a lot of the views that new jersey people hold for the mainstream for a large part of the country, a position held in polls by a tremendous number of republicans. i think if republicans take the attitude that you've got to have one point of view in every single state, they're going to lose a lot of states. but if you let candidates run the state like new jersey and have the views the state does, then you have a much better chance of carrying it. democrats have done that all over the country. they run people pro guns in pro guns state and pro-life in pro-life states. republicans have to learn to do that, too. >> it seems you just hit the nail on the head there where bernie sanders and mark pryor
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are both welcome inside the democratic tent. do you feel that that is personalizing the potential of new jersey to elect, say, more moderate republicans? think about your primary -- the primary process in the state. it's hard, i assume, for a moderate republican in a senate election to get through the process, is it not? >> it is. and there are house primaries, too. and if you're not allowed to nominate a candidate who agrees with most of the state on issues, then you can't elect them either. and that's just been going on not on in new jersey but a number of other northeastern states and i think some west coast states as well. within the republican tent, if you're ronald reagan's point of view, which is a big tent and you don't say bad things about other people in the party, that was his 11th commandment, then i think you start electing people in a number of states and it's the only way to get a national majority. if you try to carry states like new jersey, you have a national
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majorities. >> i want to ask you about governor christie. is he qualified to the president of the united states? >> oh, yeah. he's got a tremendous amount of ability. i think that's why in spite of the scandal, you're going to see him still in the mix. if you put him up against a number of the other candidates, he stands outs because he's, frankly, more able. >> do you think he needs to change his ways and house of representatives he manages things politically? you haven't been shy about the spat that he had with your son and criticizing him on that and i understand that. but do you think overall he's got to change his ways to prove whether he's presidential material? >> i think he can change some things as long as you don't change who you are. the reason we like chris christie is because of the kind of person he is. he can't change that. do you change the way you govern a bit? do you get some more -- a wide are group around you? do you do some of those things? yes. i think he should do that and my own suspicion is he will do that. >> do you think you've seen any
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evidence yet? >> yeah, i think he's become a little bit to being the old -- one is the scandal starting to fade fade. i mean, i don't see nothing that's come out has contradicted anything the governor said. secondly, i think if you watch him now, you will see him, i think he still has to broaden the group around him. but one thing at a time. this is only one problem. he's got a terrible budget problem, as a number of the governors do and he's going to be working on that, too. >> it was interesting, a couple of weeks ago you said you hadn't decided whether you would support him if he ran for president or not. what's he going to have to do to convince to you get back on board? >> it's not only what he does, it's who's in the field. we don't know who the candidates are yet. we don't know if jeb bush is going to run, if john caskasich going to run. to my mind there are a lot of good candidates out there. anyone who makes their mind up before the candidates are even
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in the field is going to make a mistake. >> governor tom kean, thanks for being with us. >> the botched execution, we'll have more than that coming up. >> nearly 70 years before tom kean chaired the 9/11 commission, miss grandfather was a member of a joint congressional committee to investigate what disaster? tweet the answer. we'll have more coming up on tdr. you probably know xerox
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completed. oklahoma governor mary fallon has ordered an investigation into what happened. >> the state needs to be certain of its protocols and its procedures for executions and that they work. >> lockett's death put a spotlight on execution, which has typically used a three-drug mixture, a paralytic to paralyze the inmate. it's become increasingly to find the combination. prisons have been scrambling to found reliable suppliers. for a time states were bartering with one another to get what they needed. there are allegations that some states even went to the
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international black market. now states are relying more on pharmacies that compound the drugs for them, pharmacies that some say fall outside fda regulation. what you end up with is often an untested compound, like the one used in oklahoma, a mixture they were using for the very first time. folks, this story is going to get trickier and trickier as we learn more. >> turning now to today's data bank number. the number is 43. this is the percent increased in terrorist attacks in 2013 compared to 2012, according to new state department report. the numbers report that 9,707 terrorist attacks in 2013 resulted in nearly 18,000 deaths. the state department notes that while al qaeda's core leadership has been degraded, the global terrorist threat has evolved, as terrorist affiliates have become more autonomous and popped up all around the world. up next, a potentially big
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see if your business qualifies at michigan congressman john conyers first came to washington, d.c. in 1965. he served in the house for nearly 50 years and he's run 25 successful campaigns for reelection. but could the incoming dean of the house be forced to compete in his august primary as a write-in candidate? conyers needs 1,000 valid voter signatures to get his name on the ballot. apparently this has been a little difficult for his campaign. most campaigns collect double that just to be safe. according to the "detroit free prays," about 200 of the signatures collected are valid.
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but at least two of conyers so-called regulators may not have been registered. they were found trying to back date their registration to 2013. conyers' democratic congressman has challenged all of conjures' circulators. he has even fewer signatures than conyers. were they collected legally? luke russert is live on capitol hill. luke, what is the next step here for conyers' office? is there a hearing process in wayne county? what's going on?
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>> well, conyers' office is acting like there's no big deal, acting like their signatures are valid and they're going to continue to move forward. but we're going to have to see were the people who collected all the signatures registered to vote and what happens next, they're going to look at when they were registered to vote, whether or not they were legally allowed to collect those signatures and if, in fact, they were not, it looks pretty difficult to make the deadline for that august 5th deadline to get the signatures they need because they were supposed to be in already. if you go back through the history of recent write-in campaigns there has been some success, lisa murkowski, she lost her candidacy to joe miller. if you want to go back about 12 years ago here in washington, d.c., mayor tony williams, he had the same exact problem conyers is getting hit with. i talked to one political operative that said john
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conyers' voters love him, if they have to go through an obstacle course to elect him, they will be again. >> that wouldn't be surprising. it does seem this is more of an issue in michigan. >> yeah, thad cotter, it happened to him. >> this process is confusing folks. >> they're sticklers. >> michael grimm is the now -- he's the indicted member of congress from staten island. with advance mcallister, who was caught kissing somebody on videotape, the louisiana republican, there was this and trey raidle, who had the cocaine arrest, there was this group pressure by the republican parties to get them both either to resign or not seek reelection and they've been successful. what's going on behind the scenes with republicans pushing out michael grimm? >> what they will tell you, chuck, is they are simply abiding by american law, which is the idea of presumption of innocence here.
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michael grimm has vehemently denied these charges, said there's a vicious campaigns that politically motivated. but you're now seeing this line of attack that goes hold on, a guy kisses his co-worker and you get all fire and brimstone and tell him to get out but here's a guy under a federal indictment, 20 counts where the fbi said he was not living up to his job as a congressman and he's allowed to stay on? what the issue is for the gop is the last thing they want to do is go back to 2007 and have the mark foley/bob ney problem where voters associate their brand with corruption. this one could stick. might not be that big in 2014. could be a lot bigger in 2016. for every one of those that come to the surface, five more will come to the surface. >> if they're not going to push him out, he gets a lot of
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high-profile treatment. and, two, that this does look bizarre, that they're forcing a guy who is caught kissing somebody versus not being as outraged about grimm? are they not outraged about what he's done? >> they have been very coy about whether they will support grimm. this is a cultural perception. new york city is always viewed skeptically by gop voters in general. so they're not going to be too worried about whether or not the guy in new york city is a republican. they view new york city as a skeptical, sort of hell city beast. they say they come here for our money but they like to hate on us afterwards. that's what they will do moving forward. >> all right. well, it will be interesting. i'm surprised that there's not more of a push on this one.
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thank you, sir. now for the next number in today's data bank, $575 million. that's how much the l.a. clippers are worth according to estimates by forbes magazine. the nba is set to take its first steps today to face the sale of the team by donald sterling. 75% of the owners most vote to oust sterling. yesterday, oprah winfrey, laf l ellis son and david geffey said they had interest in the team. if sterling had put the team up for sale a month ago, would you have had all those bidders and all that money? >> at the historic knife and fork restaurant in atlantic city, it's tuscan three-bean
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soup. and joe mchale stopped by our bureau yesterday and we got to all have a little fun with him. >> 96% of americans own a television. of that number, only 51% have cable. of those that have cable, only 28% receive the e-network and of only those who watch e, only .2% tune in to the soup. i'm talking one person right now. buddy, how you doing? the soups in d.c. ♪ ♪
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of money and politics and anxious about the two-party system that's becoming less effective. ralph nader believes the solution is to unite populists on the left and the right into what he calls convergent action, arguing that coalitions can be forged between allies who are not as unlikely as they may appear. in his new book, he proposes 25 reforms he believes will make the system work better. among them, and i'm going to put in my lawyer speed reading voiced, adjusting the minimum wage to inflation, breaking away too big to fail banks, defending and extending civil liberties and ending what he calls unconstitutional wars. fast track trade authority and the ineffective war on drugs. that's just a few of his reforms. joining me now, ralph nader, author of "unstoppable," what he
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believes is the emerging left/right alliance, dismantle the corporate state. there is a left/right coalition, some are fed up with government, some fed up with wall street, you refer to it as crony capitalism. it's a phrase, sir, sarah palin likes to use. i get it's there. what's stopping it? >> there's a lot of left-right agreement verbally all over the country. the polls show it. some of it is now moving to a rumble level, you know, nixon signed all kinds of environmental consumer and worker laws because he heard the rumble of the people. the rumble even reflected the media picking it up. that's happening now on the minimum wage, cities and states. that's a left-right. it comes in 70% to 80%. another area is juvenile crime, reform at the state level, trying to do something with the war on drugs. over 12 states have signed law
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there is. couldn't have happened without left-right, republican-democrat alliance. if the specific trade agreement is signed by obama, he's got to get it through the congress, there's a left-right alliance in the house saying no fast track. they're tired of jobs and industries being shipped abroad to communist and fascist regimes who know how to put their workers in their place at 80 cents an hour. so you see it. you've seen it in the past. we stopped the clinch river reactor against reagan and big business. in 1986 the false claims ak came, whistleblowers on corporate government, that was a left-right. the corporations lost. just over a year ago, the basic whistleblower protection act overwhelmingly passed in congress against the opposition of the corporations. that's why i call my book "unstoppable." and there are so many other
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areas. but there are three stages. they come in public opinion polls, they they move into the rumble area, then they start going operational. >> now, you've obviously sort of what you believe and you believe the two parties right now are too close to -- whether it's corporate america, the lobbying community. we can debate on what it is they're too close to and you're for this idea of breaking it up. but you want billionaires to do it. why should we trust -- i just went through -- you saw probably the first part of my show. >> yeah, yeah, yeah. >> this entire way we finance our system is sort of crazy and you're saying it's crazy but i want my billionaire to do this. why do you want a billionaire to run for president is this. >> it>> it's the only thing you media will pay attention to. >> my media. >> yeah. like ross perot. instant polling, instant coverage. >> you think if you were a billionaire, you would have gotten more coverage? >> no question about it.
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money talks on all sides of the political spectrum. the other thing is all these changes that i point out in "unstoppable", they don't rely on elections. they rely on such left-right swarm coming over the congress that the incumbents change. that's what's happened in these votis that mentioned. the incumbents are changing and that's what happened in the '60s. so i think what we're seeing and people can look at and get the more detail. >> right. >> but i have a letter in the book called dr. billionaire. >> right. i've seen that. >> because organization, taking the left-right from verbal agreement all over the country and bringing it to the state legislature, bringing it to congress, changing the country, getting things done and getting improvements takes money. the abolition movement against slavery and the women's suffrage movement. they were funded by rich bostonians and new yorkers. >> it's been interesting to talk about the candidates. you're not a hillary clinton fan and you seem to be a rand paul
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fan. >> rand paul is not good on domestic issues. he's pretty good against empire. his father ron paul is better against -- >> you want rand paul's foreign policy, but not his domestic policy. >> he's against -- >> you'd rather have her domestic policy and not her foreign policy. >> she's a militarist and a corporatist. it's wall street and the military industrial, the worst possible combination. we have to not focus on the elections, focus on changing incumbents by an unstoppable, left-right alliance. >> you are very much right on message and if you used the word unstoppable. i think it's your 75th book. >> main street against wall street. >> fair enough. ralph nader, good to be with you. >> thank you. trivia time.
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time for today's takeaway. as you know, florida's fight for governor is perhaps the marquee matchup for the midterms. sort of our presidential level of spending. according to a new quinnipiac poll right now, it's former governor charlie crist who is leading rick scott, they have it at 48-38. the contest is coming down to a fight between personality and popularity and an improving florida economy. so for instance, krifrt hcrist
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leading, 50% call him more compassionate and only 35% say the same about scott whose rating is fivable in the negative. 48% pick crist, 38% say the same of scott. but here's where scott may have an advantage. a combined 51% in the poll say they are very or somewhat satisfied with the current direction of the state and that's potentially a reflection of the state's declining employment rate and economic outlook. it should be good news for governor scott and it hasn't done much to boost the number. now you know what the campaign will be about. scott's challenge will keep this race from being a personality contest that he can't win against the more charismatic charlie crist and he has to make this a professional contest about who can better manage the state in and out of a recession. that's what the race will come down to.
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that man's privates are no longer private. lethal debate and a gut check moment on capital punishment over how we kill our death row inmates, whether it stops crime. and it's what's been happening with botched executions unconstitutional? cruel and unusual mistakes? benghazi is back. a memo flare-up has the white house playing defense again on one of the conservatives shineiest objects. with hillary clinton always in mind there are voters to sway and dollars to save. and the sterling reputation as his peer goes to work for the embattled owners and oprah eyes his team. is it time for the nfl to finally free the redskins. good morning, i'm chris jansing and we begin this may d