tv The Last Word MSNBC November 11, 2010 10:00pm-11:00pm EST
think that's really great. >> thank you. thanks for all the time, john. >> i don't want to. i have the bubons. >> thanks, john. >> it was really nice of john stewart to come over here to do the interview with the stomach flu and everything. i'm as much as a fan as i ever was. to too long, trimmed for tv discussion will be on the maddow blog tomorrow morning. "the last word with lawrence o'donne o'donnell" starts right now. >> you know, i've just been sitting here wondering, what could be worse than preserving low tax rates for the rich? well, according to president obama and the democrats during the last two campaign seasons, the only thing worse than that would be, i don't know, might be continuing to keep terror prisoners at guantanamo bay or failing to extend health care coverage to all americans. but that was then and this is now. and now we still have terror
prisoners at guantanamo bay. we have more americans without health coverage than ever before, and no prospect of ever extending health coverage to all americ americans. and maybe the rich are paying enough taxes already. >> the administration softening its position on the bush tax cuts. >> compromise is in the air. >> that didn't take long. and just 24 hours after president obama's panel announces a plan to cut trillions of dollars from america's ballooning debt -- >> an ambitious, politically explosive plan to bring the federal budget under control -- >> the white house signals it's willing to work with republicans on the one thing, the only thing they all stand for pop i've said this about 500 times. extending all of the current tax rates. >> it's too bad they call them the bush tax cuts. >> republicans jubilant with continuing with the same
policies that began under the president that ballooned the national debt. for the white house a political calculation. >> david axelrod gave an interview saying hey look, we've got to deal with the hand we're played. >> the president himself has said so-it's pretty clear where we're headed. >> it only works if both parties will work stotogether. >> but how will they tell the tea party that increasing the sdet a good thing. >> every dollar we're spending on defense, national security, home land security, education, technology, infrastructure is borrowed. >> conservatives are going to argue you don't cut a nickel out of military. >> borrowing 40 cents out of every dollar that we spend. >> this country is out of money, and we better start thinking.
>> it was the corner stone of barack obama's presidential campaign -- keep the bush tax rates for everyone except the rich, with the rich defined as incomes over $250,000. but just after midnight, a glaring headline hit the front page of the huffington post. white house gives in on bush tax cuts. the article written by howard fineman and sam stein said obama's top adviser david axelrod suggested the administration is ready to accept a temporary continuation of the bush tax rates for everyone, including the rich. we have to deal with the world as we find it, axelrod said during an unusually candid and reflective 90-minute interview in his office. the world of what it takes to get this done. there are concerns, he added, that congress will continue to kick the can down the road in the future bypassing temporary extensions for the wealthy time
and time again, but i don't want to trade away security for the middle class in order to make that point. joining me now, the co-author of that report, the huffington post's howard fineman, and from fire dog lake, a conscientious objector to many obama policies, jane hampshire. david axelrod sent an e-mail to "the washington post" this morning to your article and he said, there's not one bit of news here. i simply restated what potus and robert have been saying are two strong principles are that we need to extend the tax cuts for the middle class but we can't afford a permanent extension of the tax cuts for the wealthy. howard, there's not a bit of news here, so if you don't mind, i'm going to move on to don't ask don't tell. >> go ahead, lawrence. >> well, no. howard, it seems to me there is some news here and it all seems to turn on this adjective
permanent, which has suddenly crept in to be the operative word here. >> well, there are two things, lawrence. one is the use of the word permanent. if you go back in the history of statements the white house officials have made over the last many months, you can maybe find that, but not used this way in this context. what axelrod was basically saying to us was okay, we're going to draw the line and say, there's no way we can countenance continuation of tax cuts for the rich if they're permanent. but, and you know how this works, you know how the weasle works work, if it's not permanent, we can live with it. and that was the clear import of what he said. you gave also the operative quote here on the screen, which is he said look, we're aware of this concern about, you know, serial continuation of the tax cuts and that's a great debating point, but we don't want to risk
losing the tax cuts for the middle class. what axelrod was saying, i understand the legislative reality, the political reality. i understand the way the bills are drifted and the election results. and we're going to have to do this. he didn't say it in so many words, but it was clear that they're bracing to accept it. both sam and i are struck by accepting david axel rod was of the inevitability of this. >> let's listen to how the president chooses his words on this subject. here's a clip from his weekly address on saturday. >> i recognize that both parties are going to have to work together and compromise to get something done here. and i want to make my priorities clear from the start. one, middle class families need
permanent tax relief. and two, i believe we can't afford to borrow and spend on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaire ps. >> so there's that word permanent. it seems to me the door is wide open far temporary extension. of all these tax rates in all the brackets. >> well, barack obama has been in trouble for governing two, five, seven and 14 years into the future and not actually delivering things like health care to people today in a way that makes a difference in their lives. and, you know, it's -- it's -- you know, how many angels are dancing on the head of a pin? who know what is's going to happen two years from now. you've got a situation where david axel rod, the guy who led the political operation that led to arguably the worst political defeat of our lifetimes for the democrats last week saying one thing yesterday and another thing to do. speak clearly to the american people. be honest. president obama believes that he has a communication problem and
that's what led to the defeat. this is more of this. bottom line, why does david axelrod still have a job? >> i just want to add one footnote about worst defeat. if they hold on to the senate, that makes it the second worst defeat. in 1994 when they lost the senate, what happens there is you lose control over nomination, you can't get anything done. so at least they've got that. so i'm going to put it down as the second worst. howard, john boehner's press secretary issued this statement. republicans made a pledge to stop all the tax hikes scheduled for january 1. we're glad to see the america's must trusted adviser now agrees with this course of action and hope he and the plt show leadership blah, blah, blah. i can't even finish reading it. so they' got their interpretation of what david axelrod says which seems awfully clear to them. they've won, this is over.
>> it's the notion that the white house has already accepted the fact that there's going to have to be an extension of all those tax cuts including those for the wealthy of sometime short of permanent but beyond tomorrow. how long that's going to be, i don't know. but in terms of bargaining position and in terms of hard bargaining, it seems to me that david axelrod in his effort to acknowledge reality, and by the wa and by the way, lawrence, around the city, it's widely thought the administration is going to have to do this. but the question is, do you want to signal that you know you're going to have to do it before you actually have to do. and that's why a lot of democrats are mad at the white house today and that's why the republicans are desperately trying to overinterpret what david axelrod actually said. >> my sense of this is that they've made the calculation,
probably with vote counting that they can't get what they want in the senate and probably the house. howard made the point that maybe they tipped their hand too early. but what would you see nancy pelosi and harry reid do going forward. >> barack obama is the quarterback and he called the play. we're not going to give tax cuts to the wealthy right now. he had his deficit commission chairs report yesterday in the clown car report. and they're making a big deal about how we have to be responsible about the deficit. this is his chance to make it clear. we cannot afford to give tax cuts to millionaires. make people in the house and the senate who are millionaires go in and say, we're going to cut social security for old people we're going to cut medicare, but you know what, the one thing we're going to make sure we have is expanding the deficit so that we don't have to pay the taxes that you guys do. make that argument. even if he loses, sometimes you
win by losing. and at that point, what democrats stand for and what republicans stand for become clear. and if you've got democrats joining the republicans, you know, then at least you've called them out. but you made a distinction, you stuck by what you believe in. and that's what people want to see barack obama do. there's no leadership there. >> we're going to continue this discussion. thank you very much for joining me tonight. >> thank you, lawrence. >> thank you. >> now that we know a pentagon report says gay people should be allowed to serve openly in the military, will republicans who let john mccain filibuster the repeal continue to sit on the sidelines? and tonight's main event here on msnbc, rachel maddow versus john stewart. i'll ask rachel who won. rachel maddo sw in the spotlight. [ engine revving ]
the senators said they would decide when they knew the results of a pentagon study. that study is now on the front page of half a dozen news websites. so what are they waiting for? and murdoch media's attack on president obama for what he did on veterans day gets tonight's rewrite. and when it does, men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis for daily use. cialis for daily use is a clinically proven low-dose tablet you take every day, so you can be ready anytime the moment's right. ♪ tell your doctor about your medical condition and all medications, and ask if you're healthy enough for sexual activity. don't take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain,
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>> despite repeated calls for secretary gates to repeal don't ask don't tell during the lame duck session that begins monday, both republicans and democrat senators said they needed more time to decide their vote. senators jim webb, mark pryor, scott brown, olympia snowe, the list goes on and on. they all said their vote hinged on a pentagon report which is due december 1. it anonymously surveyed 400,000 active duty and reserve troops on the effect of gay people openly serving in the military. what affect that would have on our armed forces. that report, those senators said would give them their guidance. today, that guidance arrived. two sources familiar with a draft of the report told "the washington post" a pentagon study group has concluded that the military can lift the plan on gays serving openly in uniform with only minimal and isolated incidents of risk to
the current war efforts. more than 70% of respondents to a survey sent to active duty and reserve troops over the summer said the affect would be positive, mixed or nonexistent. joining me from washington, the executive director of the log cabin republicans, clark cooper. thanks for joining us tonight. the report states the obvious. it just feels like there's no surprise in there whatsoever. you've served in the armed services, do the polling numbers surprise you in any way? >> not at all, lawrence. in fact, if anything, it's reflective of what i've known on an anecdotal basis serving in the army reserve. in fact, back in october when the federal court put out an injuncti injunction, there was that 200-hour period, an eight-day period where don't ask, don't tell was actually suspended.
i was on active duty in arizona. and no one cared. in fact, we didn't know about it until the day ach. we were outside of access open source news. but the responses i heard were a big who cares, kind of a shoulder shrug. again, i'm not surprised. the folks that i serve with don't have an issue and really never have. >> now, the lame duck session, we know it's going to be filled with tax cuts debate, which might be brief if everyone agree, or it could drag on far while. you've been lobbying a bit on this. do you think there's a real prospect of getting something passed during this lame duck session? >> the biggest challenge now with this lame duck session for anything, including repeal of don't ask don't tell is time. there's very little time on the calendar to get much done. the defense bill, as you know, and many folks who follow defense authorization knows, there's a huge bill with many interests in there.
not only pay raises but funding. the entire department of defense, military construction, you name it. all the different parochial interests on a state by state basis for defense systems. it is a very large encome passing bill. it's been 48 years since congress has passed one. it would be -- it would be a new precedent for them not to complete action on defense bill this cycle. hopefully they will. the report that you just referenced that will come out december 1, so far so good. again, i'm not surprised by what's been made available in the leaks. if it is true, it would make it impossible for anyone to deny open service. and fortunately, there are a large number of republicans who have said that having the report done is a big favor for them. it would help them, ease them to be more supportive of repeal. and of course, having positive findings in that report should enable additional republican
votes and support for repeal. >> i think john mccain's position is a transparentally fraudulent political position. he knows better. he ran wildly to the right to preserve his senate seat with a challenge that he had in arizona this year. now that he's been re-elected, do you have any expectation that he will calm down about this? and then on the other side of it, john mccain has been willing to stop the bill, filibuster the bill if it had this in it. is there any democrat who's willing to filibuster the bill if it does not have a repeal of don't ask don't tell in it? >> well, lawrence, you're asking the wrong person about democratic strategy. as a republican and as the head of a republican organization, my focus is on my side of the aisle and my party. i would hope that as a fellow combat veteran, as a fellow republican that john mccain, that senator mccain, excuse me, would do the right thing and
vote in favor of repeal. again, that said, this report, once the comprehensive review is published and shared with members of congress, i do believe that he will come around and do the right thing. >> clarke cooper, thank you very much for your time tonight. >> thank you. >> on election night, telemundo's jose diaz belard said if harry reid kept his senate seat, he should learn to say muchos gracias because he will have the latino community to thank. and john stewart marched to restore sanity. stephen kolbert marched to keep fear alive. and rachel tried to make sense of it all. more on her exclusive interview with john stewart. [ william ] three years ago, i started my first real job as a part time sales associate with walmart. when william came in i knew he had everything he needed to be a leader in this company. [ william ] after a couple of months, i was promoted to department manager.
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christine o'donnell was on jay leno last night. >> the offers have been interesting. a book deal to a reality show. >> what would the reality show be? delaware shore? >> i don't know. i'm not necessarily interested in a reality show, unless it's something like -- we did a 30-minute ad for our campaign that highlighted how these issues impact people's lives. i would like to do something like that. like a watchdog type show. >> like a fox tv gig? >> i don't know. you know, i did the pundit thing and that's what got me in trouble in the first place. >> rachel thinks she had the big get tonight. john stewart. but i've got an even bigger get than that. i've got rachel maddow next. and on veterans day, the
president, vice president, first lady all took time with current and former servicemen. so what's wrong with that? yeah, obama got attacked for it. hi. i just wanted to let you know that military personnel can preboard at the gate. we are ready to invite our first class passengers and uniformed military personnel to board at this time.
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>> last month, john stewart's rally to restore sanity took aim at a media culture that hypes fear and polarization which provoked a response. >> watching some of the reaction to our rally to restore sanity, and good thing i was dressed that way. >> all of us had one major well defined problem with the rally. sticking up for the powerless is not the moral equivalent of sticking up for the powerful. >> whoa!
that stung. but i don't think that we were equating the two. i mean, we don't ever -- i mean, we spend a lot of our time -- i'm sorry, rachel, you wanted to add something? >> i know everybody likes to say that's cable news, it's all the same. fox, msnbc mirror images of each other. the never true any way bull puckey lazy inflation of fox news and what the rest of us do as a living. >> a civilized extension of the dialogue was conducted by rachel maddow and on her show tonight with her guest, mr. john stewart. >> what i do believe is that both sides have their way of shutting down debate. and the news networks have allowed these two sides to become the fight in the country. and i think the fight in the country is corruption versus not corruption, extremist versus
regular -- do you understand what i'm trying to say? >> what's the lefty way of shutting down? i mean, i -- >> okay, you've said bush is a war criminal. that may be technically true. in my world, war criminal is polpot. >> or harry truman, but then you took that back. >> for good reason. i don't think he was. you know, again, we have to define our terms. but i think that's such an incendiary charge that when you put it into conversation as well, technically, he is. that may be right, but it feels like a conversation stopper, not a conversation starter. >> in our spotlight tonight, because i can't get enough of her, rachel maddow. first of all, i just want you to know, it's just fair that i tell you this. i fired all of our bookers today because we can't get stewart. and i am making a run at your bookers. i'm offering them double. how did your crack team of
bookers -- did they physically go and get him? >> he offered. so you can hire them back. yeah, he called. >> so when you're a big hit, they just offer. they just say can i please come on your now? >> no. nobody ever does that. this was a totally strange experience for me. first of all, i don't know what my phone number is here at msnbc. i have an office that has a phone in it and i do not know -- i don't use the phone. i don't know. >> we're the same person. >> yeah, exactly. i have an issue, i don't use the phone. so the phone rings. jon stewart would like to talk to you. who is this? how did you make it ring? it was confusing in the first place. but anyway, he saw that clip that you just played there. where i wasn't actually talking specifically about "the daily show." i was talking about in general people who conflate fox and msnbc, but because he was going to take it on about it being about his rally, he offered and
i said yes. >> fantastic. >> let's take a look at the part where he's discussing the comparison of journalist and comedian. this is interesting stuff. >> on the issue of the perception of the rally in media, bill mahrer's criticism of it was this. when john announced his rally, he said that the national conversation is dominated by people on the right who believe obama is a socialist and people on the left who believe 9/11 was an inside job. but i can't name any democratic leaders who think 9/11 was an inside job or leaders on the left who think obama is a socialist. >> we said marxist on the left and that bush went to war in iraq. i can't remember -- >> bush is hitler. obama is hitler. >> it was more about that 9/11 was a chance for halliburton to
get their hands on oil contracts. so it's -- again, i take his point, it's a fair point, but i don't -- it's not exactly what we said and it's certainly not, i think, that's not the seminole thrust of what we were saying. again, the intention was not to say that that's people on the left and that's people on the right. the intention is to say that we've all bought into that the conflict in this country is left and right, liberal-conservative, red-blue. all the news networks have bought into that. cnn sort of started it. >> okay, that was the false equivalency section of the discussion. not the comedian versus news media. but that was the most interesting, the way he ran the clips of some fox news people and of some of our guys. i mean, that was really the center point of your question. >> for me again, i think the
criticism is not "daily show" specific, that it is more broad. i think there's a distinction -- there isn't a mirror image between left and right either in high bosnian serb lee, propensity to shout, propensity to say unkind things, or in -- i guess in indefensible things. i don't think there's a mirror image. and i certainly don't think there's a mirror image between what we do and what fox does. but he's trying to say -- i mean, he makes his own point well. he's trying to say first of all, don't hold me to account for things i didn't say. i feel the same way. and he's also trying to say that when you stop conversations rather than start them with your discussion, you're sort of culpable for the blunt terms in which the discussion has to happen. it takes all the nuance out of everything and that doesn't help anyone. that is a fair enough point. >> you know, i think -- i think in the '90s, you could make the argument that each side sort of played with the same kind of
weaponry. the arguments that i heard bob dole were, you know, within a philosophical zone that he lived in, reasonably put. and the arguments ted kennedy would make back were reasonably put. and then you get to 2004. and john kerry, a war hero, who has exposed himself to enemy fire who's been out there, been injured in war, is talked about as if he was a deserter. there's not a democrat who has ever questioned john mccain's service in terms like that. there's a huge, huge difference between the departure points of those two discussions. >> i think you can find people who cross the line on the fringes on both side. the difference is that on the right, they have taken those people in the fringe and promoted them and put them in charge. you did have the arkansas project. when bill clinton was in the office that he had an airstrip in arkansas and he was a drug dealer and killing people and all this sort of stuff. but it was the fringe. you can find people who say
crazy stuff on the fringe. but those people then became the swift boat people that ran the campaign against john kerry who became the citizens united people who then ran the entire, for example, 2010 midterms in terms of what the ads looked like. you get promoted from the fringe on the right. on the left, you stay on the fringe. >> and it gets progressively worse. i'm going to ask the control room this time to show us the comedian versus journalist clip. we don't know what we're going to see. we're hoping for that. we're hoping for that one. if we see that one, that will be fun. if we don't, we'll go with whatever they show. let's try it. >> do you think "the daily show" functions just as entertainment? i sort of feel like -- >> satire>> it's more than entertainment. it is engagement and it is criticism. >> here's what i would say. i feel more of a kinship to jerry seinfeld than i do to what
you guys do or what cnn does or what nbc does. >> but what i know of your process seems very similar of the way i put my show together. >> you really need to change -- >> yeah? >> because we're parodying a news organization, we have to have the logistics and mechanics of one, but the process the material goes through is not a news process. >> but it's fact checking. >> well, we do that, though, not to be journalists because it wouldn't be that funny -- people would be like i think it's pronounced baltimore. no, you do that because untrue things stand out like a sore thumb. >> even though you identify yourself as fake news and having a -- built with a fake news process -- >> we don't say fake news. fake is wrong. it's a misgnomer that we use. and it's glib. we're not news anything. we're commenting on the news.
comedically. >> so he feels more of a kinship with jerry seinfeld than he does with you. i feel more of a kinship with him than i do with you because it's a fashion thing. the credits at the end of that show tell us that his wardrobe is provided by armani. and i would do anything to be in the comedic slot so i could get -- >> so you could get a wardrobe line? here's a wardrobe connection to all of this. >> thank you. that was going to be a hard transition to make. >> jon stewart got me my first job on television. at the end of 2004, he went on "crossfire" and torpedoed "crossfire." cnn killed "crossfire" and fired tucker carlson. so tucker carlson was available to be hired by msnbc. he got his show and hired me. thoofs my first tv job, and there was -- that was the last
throe, that was the very last tv show in which there was a budget line item for wardrobe. it was for tucker. i was so hideous and unprepared for television that they gave me tucker's wardrobe line item. >> see the backstage stuff you learn by staying up late with msnbc. and the law of unintended consequences arises again. hire tucker carlson to do republican stuff on msnbc and you will make a star of -- >> comie! >> who will create a whole new ratings level for this network. thank you very much. riveted to tonight. it's fantastic. it re-airs tonight. it's hard to promo something that's already been on. but since it is going to re-air at midnight eastern and 9:00 p.m. pacific, everyone is going
to get another chance. >> thank you, lawrence. >> thank you very much for joining me tonight. democrats have just six weeks left, controlling both houses of congress. is there anything more controversial than taxes for them to bring up? oh, yeah. immigration. and what happen other lies about barack obama can the media of fox push? oh, yeah, how about veterans day. ♪ i had just turned 17 ♪ a harmonica and a box guitar ♪ ♪ in a canvas-covered wagon stuffed... ♪ [ male announcer ] while the world's been waiting on the electric car, maybe the whole time, the electric car has been waiting for this... the wattstation from ge. it's going to change the way we get to where we all want to go. ♪ i didn't think much of it till i took it apart ♪ tdd# 1-800-345-2550 that i didn't even understand -- i was so naive. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 i mean, i still need help. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 but not from some guy that's just going to sell me stuff.
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time for tonight's "rewrite." today, of course, is veterans day. traditionally a day when the president commemorates the day with men and women in uniform with a wreath laying at arlington national cemetery. but of course, president obama is on his four-nation trip through asia. so in his stead, joe biden attended the ceremony, laying the wreath at the tomb of the unknowns. this, of course, prompted a swift and dishonest knee jerk reaction from the right wing media. charles hurt celebrated veterans
day by writing bam awol on veterans day. not that obama doesn't appreciate the sacrifice of veterans. he absolutely does. just ask the indonesians. he was in jakarta to honor their veterans who have sacrificed on behalf of this great country. and there's no surprise that hurt's article got a link on the drudge report and on the fox news website. poet the "post" and fox news being owned by rupert murdoch's news corp. here's the reality. rather than honoring our veterans from afar as the "post" writer suggests, president obama met with actual troops stationed far from home in a far away place. president obama laid a wreath at the korean war memorial in seoul, south korea, where 36,940 u.s. troops gave their lives.
then the president met with real members of the military, current members and their families. and he made sure they knew how honored he feels to be their commander-in-chief. >> as president of the united states, i have no greater privilege than serves as commandner chief of the finest military the world has ever known. we have eighth army in the house. we've got members of the seventh air force. we've got u.s. navy forces korea. we've got just about every marine in south korea here today. >> and the president wasn't the only member of the first family who spent veterans day with soldiers far from home. first lady michelle obama served dinner and met with american troops and their families at the ramstein air base in germany.
mrs. obama told them, quote, we are so grateful to all of you. there are legitimate philosophical arguments for conservative columnists to advance about tax cuts, budget policy, war strategy, all sorts of governing issues. but you know you're dealing with fu pure obama hatred when the murdoch media lies to you about what the president did on veterans day. >> we recall acts of uncommon bravery and selflessness. but we also remember that honoring those who served is about more than the words we say on veterans day or memorial day. it's about how we treat our veterans every single day of the year. it's about making sure they have the care they need and the benefits they've earned when they come home. it's about serving all of you as well as you've served the united states of america. r every finan.
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>> just as the lame duck session of congress that begins next week seems to be heading for an allout partisan brawl over tax cuts, nancy pelosi and harry reid decide to put something on the agenda that could provoke even more hysteria than tax cuts. immigration reform. no, no, no not comprehensive immigration reform. no one in washington has the courage for that these days. in the last hours of his re-election campaign, when he knew, he knew it was all up to latino voters, harry reid promised to bring the dream act to a vote in the lame duck session. dream is an acronym meaning development relief and education for alien minors. not miners as in chilean miners, but minors as in young people. the d.r.e.a.m. act would give a
path of citizenship to an illegal immigrant if he or she came to the united states before the age of 16, has been here for at least five years, has been admitted to college, has a high school diploma or a g.e.d. and they would need to either go to college for two years or join the military. joining me now is discuss the possibilities of the d.r.e.a.m. act, msnbc contributor maria teresa kumar. on election night on telemundo -- actually on msnbc, jose diaz-balart said if harry reid wins nevada, harry reid better learn how to say muchas gracias. this is it, isn't it?
>> there's a lot of lame duck members now that can actually sacrifi sacrifice themselves and start setting up the playing field. the latino vote is going to be critical for anyone who wants to go to the white house. >> nancy pelosi said she's going to do this in the house of representatives. the house can probably get it through with the membership they have, but in the senate, can harry reid realistically deliver on this? what would the opposition to it be? and would there be enough, 45 votes to oppose it that would stop it in the senate. >> well, right now, both reid and durbin are saying they need about five republican votes. luger co-sponsored it and he said he still supports it. but at the end of the day, the republicans know full well in order to win the white house in 2012, they need at least 44%, if not more of the latino vote. >> so bringing this up is good politics going forward for not just harry reid, but for the
democrats in terms of the way the latino vote is developing in our electorate? >> right. and even more, because if you ask the average american voter if they believe we should do the d.r.e.a.m. act, they support it 65%. >> so this is one area of immigration policy where you can get agreement the size of 65%. >> you have business leaders and unions on the same side. that never happens. what it allows for as well is it allows the republicans and the democrats to say hey, the american people voted us in and said they wanted bipartisanship. here's a piece of legislation we can demonstrate, it's a token of working together, if they don't really believe it. >> and it's a no-cost bill. it just says if you do this, this and this, you can proceed and start applying for legal status>> it's a pathway to citizenship and studies demonstrated it's about 800,000 kids eligible. over their lifetime, they'll contribute $1.5 trillion into the economy. those are big numbers. >> we had a student from university of california system
who stood up during a debate in california and asked meg whitman about this. we brought her here. she sat in that chair and talked about it. she insisted on remaining in the shadows because even though she's enrolled at the university of california system, she's pursuing her degree, she was afraid of being seen, even though she's lived in this country most of her life. that's the way it feels if you're a college student, undocumented, who's worked hard as she has all the way through our educational system. >> what she represents is these are kids who are the epitome of the american dream, right? they beat all odds, they're highly motivated to get themselves into the military and to go to college, right? that's exactly what we want in this country, are folks that, you know, basically pull themselveses up from their boot straps and they've done it against all odds. >> what was clear about her and her story is she's on her way to making a contribution to this country. not on this way of draining this
country of any resources of any kind. which is, you know, part of the fear on the southern boarder is that people coming over, you know, and they're ewing our hospitals and they're not paying for things. it's a costly population. to have to deal with in social services. that's not what we're talking about in d.r.e.a.m. act candidates. >> these are folks that have already proven themselves to be good citizens. for every respect, they actually feel american. and there's a tragedy when we're saying we don't have a lot of high-skilled woorkers when we have a whole swath of individuals who want to be doctor, lawyers and scientists. >> would the argument against it be you don't want to create an incentive like this. once you say you can do this, we provoke more 10-year-olds to run across the border? >> the d.r.e.a.m. act is actually phactual ly grandfathered. it's for those currently here. >> so just to clarify.
the current version they would bring up in congress, would it only apply for people who are already here? and not in any way provide any relief to someone who entered the country say a year from now and then tried to go through that same -- >> as it stands now. no, as far as i understand it. and basically the person has to be here for five years. so you're talking mostly about kids in elementary or secondary schools. >> but what are the chances that they can actually get this done? with all the other contentious issues. they're talking about don't ask don't tell coming up in the lame duck session. there's only so much they can do. i'm not even sure they've decided how long thwilling to r this lame duck session. >> i think part of it goes back to -- the democrats have to prove they did a good fight for immigration, otherwise, latino voters are going to remember. >> the town hall meet welterweight did live from san diego, what do you expect people
will learn about the politics of this, that they don't know now? especially involving the size and the trend lines for the latino vote? >> i think one of the things that folks will take away is that the majority of latinos are american. 60% of all the 46 million lat o latinos are born here and they speak english. they're trying to navigate, just as americans are, the rest of americans. and more importantly, it's going to be, what we hoped is an honest conversation. there is real pain out there where folk, you know, are feeling squeezed. and pro provide a space where latinos can say look, so are we. >> i think people are going to be surprised when we discuss the history of this, how much of this we've seen before in the controversial history of this subject over the history of this country. >> thank you very much for joining mess tonight and previewing monday night. on monday night, maria teresa and i will in this sam