Guests: George Miller, Steve McMahon, Ron Christie, Jennifer Donahue,
Stephen A. Smith, Elijah Cummings, James Clyburn, Howard Dean, David Frum
HOST: Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW
tonight from New York.
These stories are hitting my hot buttons tonight. Take a guess.
President Obama will sign the historic health care reform legislation into
law tomorrow. He and Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker, they got it done. This is
what leadership looks like.
Majority Whip Jim Clyburn and Howard Dean will join me in just a moment
right off the top tonight.
And let history show that not a single Republican voted in favor of the
most significant legislation since Medicare. Health care reform is turning
out to be Waterloo for the Republicans. Commentary coming on that later.
Plus, Tiger Woods answers questions for the first time since leaving a
sexual rehabilitation clinic. And Stephen A. Smith will talk about what
it‘s going to be like for him in the Masters. That‘s coming up in the
Now, this is the story that has a lot of hardworking people in this country
fired up. Ted Kennedy‘s dream of universal health care is just hours away
from becoming a reality in this country.
The hundred-year war to make health care a fundamental right in America is
upon us. And I can say that I think the good side won.
What a loss. What a loss for the right-wing network across the street.
Think about the hours that they spent just trying to take apart President
Obama, talk down the proposals, talk down the change, the fear-mongering
that went on. What a loss for the conservative right-wing talkers of
America who lied repeatedly about what‘s actually in the bill and what it‘s
going to do for the American people.
This is a loss for the Tea Partiers. I guess they just didn‘t organize
well enough. Maybe they weren‘t loud enough. They lose.
In fact, I think this is bigger than President Obama winning the election.
You see, we had this run-up to the election. Obama beats McCain. Huge
upset. He wins nine Bush states.
In his first major initiative within 18 months he gets the victory. You
may not like the bill totally, but it is a first step. It‘s the cracking
the door open, the kicking it down.
And yes, conservatives, we‘re on our way to single payer. We‘re going to
get there some day.
Of course it‘s always the darkest before dawn. Some Tea Partiers showed
their true colors on Saturday. Couldn‘t be without this, could we?
Congressman John Lewis and fellow African-Americans had to endure multiple
shouts of the N-word. A protester spit on African-American Congressman
Emanuel Cleaver. Homophobic slurs were yelled at Congressman Barney Frank.
There was no decorum in the people‘s House, either, because they were just
frustrated they were losing. This happened when Congressman Bart Stupak
tried to address the House floor last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Those who are shouting out are out of order.
REP. RANDY NEUGEBAUER ®, TEXAS: -- baby killer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Well, Texas Congressman Randy Neugebauer was the member who
shouted out “baby killer” at Stupak. He just did it because Stupak
negotiated a deal with the White House to make sure no federal funds were
going to pay for abortions.
Neugebauer released a statement today saying, “Last night was the climax of
weeks and months”—you can throw in a year there if you wanted—“of
debate on a health care bill that my constituents fear.”
They fear health care reform in the 19th District in Texas? Interesting.
And, of course, they do not support it.
“In the heat of the motion of the debate, I exclaimed the phrase ‘It‘s a
baby killer.‘ I deeply regret that my actions were mistakenly interpreted
as a direct response, reference to Congressman Stupak, himself. I have
apologized to Mr. Stupak and also apologized to my colleagues for the
manner in which I expressed my disappointment about the bill.”
Hold it right there. Are we getting into double figures yet?
How many times have the Republicans apologized this year for stuff that
they said when you know they really meant it?
Well, anyway, the man who forgot he lost the last election said this, this
morning, on “Good Morning America.”
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN ®, ARIZONA: With all this euphoria that‘s going on,
this inside-the-beltway champagne toasting and all that, outside the
beltway the American people are very angry. And they don‘t like it and
they‘re going—and we‘re going to try to repeal this. And we are going
to have a very spirited campaign coming up between now and November, and
there will be a very heavy price to pay for it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: You know, you can‘t take issue with that. I agree that there are
some Americans out there that are angry, that haven‘t read the bill, that
only listen to the right-wing talkers and the righties across the street.
But there‘s not enough of them.
You see, they lost. They lost again.
The Republicans have tried to make this about fear and politics and not
what we should do. They just don‘t get it. They lost and the liberals,
well, we won because we have the facts on our side.
What a victory for change. This is a jobs bill, if you want to really dig
into the detail. This is a bill about morality and who we are as a people.
Our leaders have chosen to make this about people and not gouging profits
for CEOs. And inexplicable profits after cutting people off their
Middle class Americans, just look at it this way. You woke up this morning
knowing that the health care you have now is a right. It‘s your benefit.
It helps your children. And it is your entitlement.
You might not feel it yet, but significant change is on the way. This is
what President Obama had to say after the victory.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This isn‘t radical reform,
but it is major reform. This legislation will not fix everything that ails
our health care system, but it moves us decisively in the right direction.
This is what change looks like.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: And this battle isn‘t over. But the Americans have taken a giant
step forward for social justice.
In 15 months, President Barack Obama has done more the middle class than
Reagan, Bush 41, Bush 43, all combined. Change we can believe in is here.
And, you know, having done town hall meetings all over the country, and
having people have tears coming down their cheeks, I want you to know—
and you folks, you know who you are, you know how many hands our team has
shaken out on the road and how many voices we‘ve listened to, and how we
have come face to face. I want you to know, last night, when I had the
honor to broadcast with David Shuster here on MSNBC, it was the highlight
of my career. And I thought a lot about you folks all night long.
We are moving in the correct direction. We are going to make sure that
people get health insurance so they don‘t die in this country. We‘re more
about saving lives than we are about profit.
Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think about this
Tonight‘s text survey is: Did passage of the health care reform renew your
faith in President Obama‘s leadership? Text “A” for yes and “B” for no to
622639. I‘ll bring you the rust results later on in the show.
Now, the reason we had this text question tonight is because I remember the
campaign. Remember across the street they were saying—over there on the
righty network they were saying, oh, he hasn‘t done anything, he doesn‘t
have any legislative accomplishments.
What are you guys saying over there now? It‘s the biggest thing in 50
But here‘s what I‘m really upset about. In the office today—in the
office we have this conversation about, OK, what‘s our text poll going to
be tonight? And I lost out on this one.
I was voted down in the office. I wanted to know, what day do you think
Rush Limbaugh is going to be going to Costa Rica? Is it going to be text
“A” for Monday, text “B” for Tuesday?
It‘s fun to get the victory, isn‘t it?
Joining me now is South Carolina Congressman Jim Clyburn, the majority whip
in the House.
OK, Congressman. I‘ll ask you. What day do you think Limbaugh should be
going to Costa Rica?
SCHULTZ: Jim, congratulations. Take a victory lap tonight.
REP. JAMES CLYBURN (D-SC), MAJORITY WHIP: Well, thank you so much for
having me. And thank you so much for all the help you gave in helping us
educate the American people as to what it was we were trying to do.
I think over the next couple of weeks people are going to look in on this
thing and they are going to be amazed as to how in touch with middle
America this legislation is. It‘s kind of amazing to me the letters I‘m
Now, some I wouldn‘t talk about on this show. But I‘m hearing from more
people now who want to know, when can I sign up for this thing? When are
you going to get this out to us in the public?
For the first time, I know now that my child can come on to my insurance
policy. For the first time, I can keep my child who wants to go to a
graduate school on my policy.
These things are going to resonate with the American people in a way that
nothing has in a long, long time. And those people who are—got all this
gloom and doom about what‘s going to happen to Democrats in November,
you‘re going to be hear a different tune very soon.
SCHULTZ: Congressman Clyburn, you were one of the first to come out and
support Barack Obama on the campaign trail, and you took a lot of heat for
it because there were a lot of questions about his experience and a lot of
people didn‘t know him. In fact, when he jumped into the race, only 18
percent of African-Americans knew who Barack Obama was. But you were out
there early with him.
How do you feel about it tonight?
CLYBURN: Well, I think President Obama has demonstrated in the last few
weeks exactly what people voted for. Now, people had some problems early
on because during the campaign, people forget that all those economic
problems came about in the waning days of the campaign.
President Obama was talking about reforming our health care system. He was
talking about how he was going to expand the economic opportunities in this
country. Nobody was talking about having to rescue an economy from a cliff
that it seemed to be headed toward.
And so, he did first things first. And now that we‘ve got things
stabilized, and in some areas beginning to grown again, President Obama is
now concentrating on things like health care. And I want to tell you,
education as well.
I think a lot of people did not focus on the fact that in this
reconciliation bill that we passed with 220 votes last night—
SCHULTZ: Student loans.
CLYBURN: -- is a big uptick in Pell Grants in for students who would like
to go to post—secondary education. An uptick for historical-backed (ph)
colleges and universities. Over $2 billion for them—minority-serving
institutions, Hispanic-serving institutions, school construction. All this
is in this reconciliation bill as well.
And I think when people see what we did last night, they are going to be
very, very happy with the fact that President Obama has now got the country
moving fast in a new direction.
SCHULTZ: Well, Congressman, he didn‘t do it without you and Nancy Pelosi
and Steny Hoyer over in the House. You‘re the whip. You counted the
votes. You got people in line. You explained it to them.
And you deserve a great deal of credit. And I know it means a lot to you.
And I took to heart your comment last night here at the press conference
that we covered here live when you said that you have enjoyed every minute
SCHULTZ: And you‘ve got to enjoy the run. And you‘ve definitely done
Congratulations, Congressman. Thank you.
CLYBURN: Well, thank you so much. Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Now let‘s go to former Vermont governor and former DNC chair
Governor Dean, good to have you with us tonight.
HOWARD DEAN (D), FMR. VERMONT GOVERNOR AND FMR. DNC CHAIRMAN: Thanks, Ed.
Congratulations. You worked pretty hard for this one yourself.
SCHULTZ: Well, just a vehicle for the people. And it‘s been fun to be a
part of what I believe is a door, an opening for Americans, that their
lives are going to be a lot better.
I know this isn‘t what you wanted. We wanted more. You wanted more. But
there are some great things in this bill.
And what should be the next step for the progressive movement in moving
forward on health care reform? What do you think?
DEAN: Well, I think the first thing is we‘ve got to let this thing settle
out and move on to jobs. There‘s a lot of stuff going on in foreign
affairs, Afghanistan. There‘s plenty to do on the president‘s plate.
Climate change is a huge problem that nothing is—the House passed a
bill. The Senate hasn‘t done anything on it yet. So there‘s a lot to be
This bill needs some time. There‘s—over the next six months, a lot of
very good things are going to happen for the American people—elimination
of pre-existing conditions, particularly kids, taxi drivers, cleaning
women, people like that, who don‘t have health care benefits are going to
be able to afford them again. A lot of Americans who work hard are going
to able to get health care.
But there are some problems. The costs aren‘t controlled. Older people
are subjected to paying three times as much as younger people are.
So, we‘ve opened the door. As you said, this is a historic night and this
is an enormous victory for Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. A
huge victory for this president.
This president really has come into his own as president of the United
States now. And Americans love a winner. And he is a winner tonight.
But this is just the beginning. I don‘t believe this is really health care
reform. This is the opening so health care reform is now just not possible
but also a necessity.
SCHULTZ: Governor Dean, what are the midterms going to look like? I know
six, eight months is an eternity in politics. But this does set the table
for the Democrats to run on change and to say we did what we said we were
going to do. Didn‘t get everything we want, and I think the American
people understand how many olive branches were coming out of the White
House to try to get the Republicans on board. But they were very up front
about obstruction all along.
What does this mean for the midterms?
DEAN: Well, this is good for the midterms from the Democratic point of
view. You know, people love a strong president. And this is now a strong
president with a big win under his belt. That‘s going to help all the
Democrats across the board.
We‘re still going to lose some seats, but I think it‘s much less likely
that we‘d lose our majority in either house at this point.
SCHULTZ: Governor Dean, great to have you with us tonight. I appreciate
your time. Congratulations for all you did.
And you were the one that stepped forward with a 50-state strategy. And I
don‘t think any progressive in this country will ever forget that.
Thanks so much.
DEAN: Thanks, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, a former Bush speechwriter says that President Obama‘s
win on health care will mean Waterloo for the Republicans. David Frum
joins me in just a moment.
Plus, Tiger Woods told the Golf Channel his addiction is horrific and he‘s
afraid of how fans are going to react to him when he hits the course at the
Masters. Stephen A. Smith will join me for that in the “Playbook.”
And “Caribou Barbie” spewed another dandy out there about President Obama‘s
inexperience. That puts her in the zone.
Stick around. You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.
From the beginning of the health care battle the primary objective of most
Republicans was to see President Obama fail. Senator Jim DeMint was one of
the first to admit it when he said that stopping reform would be Obama‘s
Last night, the GOP lost their fight for failure. And a lot of Republicans
are consoling themselves by predicting widespread Democratic defeat in
Former Bush speechwriter David Frum had a different point of view. He
wrote, “Conservatives and Republicans today suffered their most crushing
legislative defeat since the 1960s. Today‘s defeat for free-market
economics and Republican values is a huge win for the conservative
entertainment industry. Their listeners and viewers will now be even more
enraged, even more frustrated, even more disappointed in everybody except
the responsibility-free talkers on television and radio.”
“For them, it‘s mission accomplished. For the cause they purport to
represent, it‘s Waterloo all right: ours.”
Well, Mr. Frum, I appreciate your time tonight. I guess the question—
DAVID FRUM, FRUMFORUM.COM: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: -- at this hour based on your opinion is, how do they rethink
this? How do they recover?
FRUM: Well, I hope we do some rethinking. I need to make clear at the
start, if I had been in the House of Representatives on Sunday, I would
have voted nay. But I don‘t know why we reached this point where we bet
everything on all the marbles trying to repeat 1994 against a president
this time not with 42 percent of the vote, but with 53 percent of the vote.
Now, from here there‘s talk that Republicans are going to go after repeal.
That is completely unrealistic.
Michele Bachmann has a piece of legislation that says the act is repealed.
And she‘s going to show that to the larger number of Republicans that will
be there after November. And they‘ll say, OK, yes, all for that, except
for the part about the 35 percent tax credit for small business. We like
that. So that will be a line out.
Then somebody will say, yes, there‘s kids with the preconditions. We can‘t
take that out. And pretty soon you‘ve got a repeal bill that is 2,700
pages long. And the president is not going it sign it anyway.
We need to be focused on reforming this bill, and we also need to be
focused on trying to find more winnable fights. And on issues where
compromise is possible, as it was on this one, to seek compromise.
Make—if it‘s true that Nancy Pelosi didn‘t want to compromise, make her
the divider. Don‘t be the divider yourself. Make her the obstructionist.
Don‘t be the obstructionist yourself.
SCHULTZ: Who do you see in the Republican Party possibly changing their
way of thinking?
FRUM: Look, I think when you watched that Blair House summit, it was clear
-- Lamar Alexander was somebody who wanted to—who was serious about
these issues, who took seriously the underlying concern. I mean, these are
legislators. They hear from their constituents. They encounter actual
They would have liked to be able to deliver some kind of solutions, but
they‘re trapped. They‘re trapped because we have revved up the voter base
that if you are somebody who is serious about health care, like Utah
Senator Robert Bennett, he‘s going to be primaried. He‘s in a lot of
danger because his people, his voters have been convinced that this is the
(INAUDIBLE). They‘re going to murder grandma.
How do you do business with people who want to murder your grandma? You
SCHULTZ: Well, moving forward, what are the Republicans going to run on?
I mean, just run on repeal? Aren‘t they going to have to come up with,
this is what we would do and this is how we could do it, to gain people?
Are they just going to play on the anger and the fear?
And you mentioned the right-wing talkers and the television talkers over on
the conservative side. It is great entertainment for them, for their base,
because they just get people all riled up and angry. But sooner or later
you have got to get to the detail of what you want to do and where you want
to take the country.
FRUM: And you have to remember, also, elections are won by the more
hopeful, more optimistic, more positive and more unifying person. That‘s
the person you want to be, because that‘s the kind of person Americans want
to be governed by.
They don‘t want to be governed by anger. We don‘t elect angry people.
Ronald Reagan wasn‘t angry. And George Bush in 2000 wasn‘t angry either.
And that‘s how he eked it out.
This—and it is that you can‘t offer people the false promise—it‘s not
even a promise of repeal, because I think as we get close, just the
complete unworkability of that idea is going to reveal itself. And it‘s
going to collapse.
SCHULTZ: And David, obviously you‘re a conservative, but can you
appreciate the campaign ammunition that President Obama is now going to be
equipped with going out on the campaign trail? He can sell, he‘s a
tremendous talent, people gravitate to him.
Did the job just get tougher for Republicans based on talent alone?
FRUM: Well, as you would expect with any piece of legislation, this is
front-loaded with goodies that are aimed at key Republican constituents.
There are a lot of goodies for people over 65. There are a lot of goodies
for small business. And they go into effect right away.
Now, I opposed this bill because it means more taxes, more debt. And where
are the cost controls? But those problems materialize later.
Everything that is wrong with this bill materializes late. The things that
materialize early a lot of people are going to like, and a lot of key
Republican constituencies are going to like.
SCHULTZ: David, thanks so much for joining us tonight. Appreciate it.
FRUM: Thank you for your time.
SCHULTZ: Enjoyed your take.
David Frum, you can find him at FrumForum.com.
I found the whole thing interesting last night in our coverage. It was
very clear that the Republicans do not believe the CBO score and the
Democrats do. And I‘ll tell you, if the CBO, if the Congressional Budget
Office is off a trillion dollars, we really are screwed up.
Coming up, the woman who had to write “tax cut” on her own hand thinks
President Obama is over his head? OK.
Hey, Sarah, you‘re going into the zone.
Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And another edition of “Psycho Talk” tonight.
Tea Party princess Sarah Palin joined her colleagues on the right-wing
network on Friday in a last-ditch attempt to smear health care reform. But
Palin must have misplaced the latest Republican talking points. She had to
fall back on her old attacks from the 2008 campaign.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SARAH PALIN ®, FMR. ALASKAN GOVERNOR: It‘s an absolute broken promise of
President Obama‘s that there would be an attempt, anyway, at
bipartisanship. It really reflects a lack of experience of President
Obama. So, to jump into this huge, hugely important, responsible position
as president of the United States without the experience to know how to
work across party lines and to know how to administer and to manage a team
to get policy through that makes sense, that‘s supported by the people,
it‘s a bit over his head, if you will.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Wow. The woman who couldn‘t stick it out for a single term as
governor of Alaska is trying to say that President Obama is in over his
Just for fun, let‘s do a little comparison of the two tonight.
Since President Obama took office, well, he has started to withdraw our
troops from Iraq. Sarah Palin withdrew from her job.
President Obama signed a $787 billion stimulus package that is helping
Americans all over the country recover from the recession. Sarah Palin
stimulated her own personal bank account writing a book and charging
$100,000 to talk to Tea Partiers.
And President Obama is about to sign historic health care legislation.
Sarah Palin, she signed with Fox.
Palin has no place criticizing President Obama for lack of experience. And
her claim that Obama doesn‘t know how to be bipartisan is absolutely bogus
and certainly not the record. President Obama spent the last year trying to
reach across the aisle on health care. It‘s not Obama‘s fault the
obstructionist Republicans kept slapping his hand away. Last night‘s vote
proves that President Obama has what it takes to deliver the results.
So just remember, a half-term governor from where? Saying that
President Obama is in over his head? That‘s championship Psycho Talk.
Coming up, small businesses just got a major shot in the arm. The
health care bill might be the key to our economic recovery. House Help
Committee Chairman George Miller of California will join us with the good
news in just a moment.
Plus, Tiger‘s talking. He‘s letting all the skeletons out of the
closet before the Masters. I‘ll tell you how he connects his father‘s
death to his transgressions. Stephen A. Smith tees it up in the playbook.
You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW. Thanks for watching tonight.
Health care reform is good for the country, but it is especially good, and
this story has not been told enough, for small businesses. The thing that
gets me, the Republicans know this. Small businesses are going to get a
tax credit worth 35 percent of their health care costs. It‘s going to jump
to 50 percent in the tax credit in two years. This is right out of their
The insurance exchange will provide more bargaining power. They‘ll
be able to purchase better coverage at a, buzz phrase, lower cost. The
Small Business Majority Group predicts coverage costs could drop by as much
as 30 percent. This will encourage more Americans to take a risk—take a
risk and start a business. Small businesses will be able to compete for
the best employees if they can offer a better benefit package.
For more, let me bring in one of the architects of this reform bill.
Joining me now is Congressman George Miller, chairman of the House
Education and Labor Committee. Congressman, this—I figured out this
much. This bill has got so much in it. Where do you start telling the
I run a small business. My sons run a concrete business. I feel so
compelled to put up on our screen tomorrow night exactly what‘s in it for a
company with less than 25 employees. Go ahead. This is reaching across
the aisle, isn‘t it?
REP. GEORGE MILLER (D), EDUCATION & LABOR CMTE CHAIRMAN: Exactly.
It‘s reaching across the aisle. It was one of the main concerns of the
Obama administration, of the Senate and the House Democrats when we did
this bill. We wanted to make health care affordable to those small
business-people that wanted to offer it for their employees or are offering
it now and telling us that they can‘t afford to keep that insurance for
The tax credit is immediate. As you pointed out, in two years it
grows up to 50 percent. This is what people have been saying we should
offer to small businesses for many years and now it‘s available to them.
so it‘s critical. When you talk to small business-people in our
constituencies, they say to us, well, I would keep my—I would keep the
insurance or I would offer insurance, or that‘s very interesting, I would
think about that. So they‘re very encouraged by this.
The fact is Republicans decided, rather than be constructive, rather
than get involved in this process, they would lie about this bill, they
would tell mistruths about this bill, they would distort the bill, they
would whip up crowds to spread all this misinformation about the
legislation. But when people focus on it now, they see that this benefits
their families, their businesses, their employment, and their
SCHULTZ: You know, that‘s what‘s so disingenuous about their whole
complaint about this bill, is Republicans know exactly what this is.
People that have to meet payroll, people that want to get insurance to
their employees, people that want to keep employees, so they don‘t go
elsewhere and get the best employees you can and really compete, this has
got all kinds of incentives. You know, this and the jobs bill you guys
have passed—I‘ve never seen an administration in less than 18 months do
as much for jobs as this administration has done.
MILLER: That‘s it. And not only that, this legislation will create
jobs. We will create four million jobs over the next decade because of the
growth in the health care field and the life science fields and in the
community health care facilities fields. So this is a tremendous
But also think of this for that small business-person: even if they
don‘t offer insurance, they will know that their employees are covered, so
that their employees won‘t be missing work because they couldn‘t get health
care and now they have an pneumonia instead of a cold. These kind of
things are tradeoffs that are so valuable when trying to keep a workforce
together. They won‘t be running of worrying about whether or not their
child has insurance or won‘t have insurance. They‘ll be covered and
they‘ll always be covered.
So this lifts a lot of burden off small businesses.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, great work. Great to have you with us.
Appreciate your time.
MILLER: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Congressman George Miller from San Francisco tonight here
on THE ED SHOW. Let‘s talk about the politics of this. Let‘s go to
Democratic strategist Steve McMahon, because the Republicans have been
squawking all day about how they want to repeal this. How do you run a
campaign on you want to repeal stuff? What do you think, Steve?
STEVE MCMAHON, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Let me tell you, I hope
that‘s the campaign they run, because they‘re going to then be explaining
to the American people why it‘s a good idea to put the preexisting
condition situation back where it was. They‘re going to have to explain to
people why it‘s a good idea to take away these tax credits for small
business that will create jobs. There -- 70 percent or 75 or 80 percent
even of what‘s in this bill is very, very popular with 80 percent of the
electorate, and with a lot of republicans. And when they try to explain
what it would mean to repeal this bill, I think it will be their Waterloo.
SCHULTZ: OK, now, the GOP and the Tea Partiers, what‘s the
relationship moving forward here? It seems that they might come together
now that this legislation has been passed and it might unite them. Or am I
wrong on that?
MCMAHON: I think the Tea Partiers have just about as many qualms
with GOPers as they have with Democrats. In fact, I think what you might
see is Tea Party activists in GOP primaries, which is going to create a
whole other great sporting event for those of us who are Democrats who like
to watch Republicans tear each other up. The Tea Partiers are going to get
in there against incumbents who they think have spent too much money—and
they have—and they‘re going to run the Tea Party movement against the
conservative Republican movement, and it‘s going to be great sport to
SCHULTZ: How much money do you think will be spent in this midterm?
Will it break a record as opposed to other midterms, total dollars?
MCMAHON: I think what you have on both sides, frankly, right now,
is a very, very energized base. Democrats now feel like the Obama
administration has delivered on a very, very big promise and something that
eluded presidents for 60 years. The Republicans are as angry as the
Democrats are happy right now. I think you‘re going to see that with small
dollar fund-raising and with huge amounts of money spent in campaigns.
You mentioned earlier to Governor Dean, who‘s one of my favorite
people in politics, thank god he had a 50-state strategy, because
Democratic activists in all 50 states are going to be supporting
candidacies now for Democrats running for reelection in ways that they
haven‘t in the past. That‘s going to be a good thing for those candidates.
SCHULTZ: Isn‘t hat the truth? Steve McMahon, great to have you
with us tonight. Thanks so much.
Now I want to get a rapid fire response from our panel on these
three stories. Republican Congressman from Texas is trying to walk back
his “baby killer” comment. He claims it wasn‘t directed at Democrat Bart
Health care reform passed Congress, but could face a court fight
from at least 12 states angry about the insurance mandate.
And a progressive group launches a major TV advertising campaign
against psycho talker Congresswoman Michele Bachmann. Joining us tonight,
political analyst Jennifer Donahue is with us, and Republican strategist
Ron, we‘ll start with you tonight. First of all, how many apologies
have we seen come from Republicans this year? No, that‘s not my question.
My question is—I have to have fun with this, Ron.
RON CHRISTIE, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: I know.
SCHULTZ: Is he genuine in his apology saying, well, he was just
saying “baby killer,” he wasn‘t directing it at the congressman.
CHRISTIE: Well, I don‘t think that type of language is proper on
the floor of the House of Representatives. I don‘t think that Alan
Grayson, a Democrat from Florida, some of the hateful things he‘s said, is
appropriate. I don‘t think Republicans should do it. I think Republicans
and Democrats need to recognize that that is the people‘s House and that
that level of incivility is uncalled for. I don‘t like that in politics.
SCHULTZ: What do you think, Jennifer?
JENNIFER DONAHUE, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think that Ron
is putting it nicely for the Republicans. I think it‘s a sign of absolute
desperation. I think it‘s a fight to stay relevant. I think the apology
is because he went too far, didn‘t realize it because he‘s caught up in a
whirlwind. There‘s a whip-saw going on. Republicans can‘t see straight,
they‘re so angry. Their entire world and the entire political landscape
has changed 100 percent in the last week. They don‘t know how to deal with
CHRISTIE: With all due respect—
SCHULTZ: Next subject. Ron, you have a legal back ground. What do
you make of these attorney generals across the country that now want to
challenge this, saying that, you know, it constitutionally just doesn‘t
stand up, the bill that they signed last night.
CHRISTIE: Very concerned about it, Ed. First, let me say, the
Republicans actually do have a strategy. We‘re not spinning around. I‘m
tired of this talk about the Beltway and I‘m tired of Democrats always
saying, oh, it‘s the Republicans this.
Let‘s focus on the good things for the country. One of the bad
things that happened yesterday is your question, Ed. There are 37 states
around this country that have said, we should leave it to the Tenth
Amendment. We should believe that those powers not specifically delineated
in the Constitution—we should allow that power and those abilities to
the state. I think it has never, ever been attempted by a Congress,
Democrat or Republican, to say that an American has to purchase a
particular good and service. That has never happened.
SCHULTZ: You think they withstand the legal test here?
CHRISTIE: I do. I read the Constitution again this afternoon. I
don‘t see anywhere in the Constitution that this government and our
founders specifically called on Americans to particularly buy a gooder
SCHULTZ: Jennifer, is this whining politics or is this going to
play in a lot of places? What do you think?
DONAHUE: I think actually here is where, Ron, I agree that there‘s
a point that is going to elongate this debate, more than the repeal
process, more than what‘s going to happen—excuse me, my eyes are
watering with these camera lights. But more than what we‘re going to see
with repeal and parliamentary maneuvers, we‘re going to see states taking a
firm ground, political activists trying to get this repealed, the same way
that they‘ve had some success with Roe v. Wade on a state by state level.
SCHULTZ: Ron, quickly, the candidates are going to be facing a
barrage of ads. Michele Bachmann is being targeted early on. Is this the
tip of the iceberg?
CHRISTIE: I think it‘s the tip of the iceberg. But I think it‘s
the tip of the iceberg against conservative Americans around this country
who are very concerned about the big size of government. They‘re not going
to go after Republicans. A hundred thousand dollars against Congresswoman
Bachmann is nothing. I think the Democrats are the ones—a lot of them
are going to get thrown out of office due to their vote last night.
SCHULTZ: Jennifer, don‘t feel bad about those tears coming down
your cheeks. It‘s water from the eyes, the lights. I know about it. We
won‘t mistake you for a Republican today after the big bill was signed.
DONAHUE: That‘s right. I could be mistaken for a Republican. I‘m
actually an independent. So I should be crying out of one eye and not out
of the other.
SCHULTZ: Go ahead, make the comment on it.
DONAHUE: Just quickly, I think that Democrats are trying to show
they can fight back. The Republicans aren‘t the only well-funded ones, and
if they‘re going to start a campaign about the health care bill, that
Democrats are going to fight back and do it as well.
SCHULTZ: All right.
CHRISTIE: Wait until November, guys. It‘s going to be a game
SCHULTZ: You‘ll be on a lot before then, Ron.
DONAHUE: It would be either way, Ron. It‘s a midterm election.
SCHULTZ: Jennifer Donahue, Ron Christie, always a pleasure.
Coming up, President Obama sure knows how to keep his cool. As
Congress brought the health care bill down to the wire, he‘s back there
checking his NCAA brackets. Stephen A. Smith is here to talk about March
Madness, the Masters. So much more coming up in the playbook. Stay with
SCHULTZ: In my playbook tonight, Tiger Woods took questions for the
first time since the world found out that he‘s had multiple extra-marital
affairs. Before his return to the golf course at Augusta next month, Tiger
try to explain how his personal life got so far off track.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How did things get so out of control?
TIGER WOODS, GOLFER: Going against your core values, losing sight
of them. I quit meditating. I quit being a Buddhist. And my life changed
upside down. I felt I was entitled, which I never had felt before.
And consequently I hurt so many people. I tried to stop and I
couldn‘t stop. And it was just—it was horrific, to stare at yourself
and look at the person you‘ve become. You become disgusted.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Meanwhile, after a brief stint working for Tiger Woods,
former Bush Secretary Ari Fleischer has cut and run. Apparently, Fleischer
hit the bricks because he thought he was becoming too much a part of the
Joining me now, Stephen A. Smith, nationally syndicated radio talk
show host, and columnist for the “Philadelphia Enquirer.”
Stephen A., why two five-minute interviews? What‘s the mission
STEPHEN A. SMITH, “PHILADELPHIA ENQUIRER”: The mission is to make
sure you sort of derail some of that momentum coming your way when you‘re
about to take the golf course in a couple of weeks. That‘s number one.
Number two, more importantly, with those text messages that were
revealed by the former prostitute or what have you, Joslyn (ph), the fact
is that you know a lot of stuff came out. That‘s going to invoke a lot of
provoke a lot of questions. You try to derail it as best as you
possibly can, make sure you are open to any questions. At the same time,
you limited it to five minutes so it couldn‘t be so invasive.
SCHULTZ: What do you make of Tiger‘s comment about he‘s a little
apprehensive about how the fans are going to treat him?
SMITH: I think that‘s authentic, because he‘s got to be
apprehensive about it, because he doesn‘t know the reaction that he‘s going
to get. There‘s two sides. There are people out there who just want to
see him play golf because we all know that he‘s the greatest golfer in the
world. There are others that find him absolutely repugnant and
reprehensible, and want no part of him.
So he knows he‘s going to, in all likelihood, experience that, to
some degree, even though he‘s somewhat shielded. Because, again, we‘re
talking about the Masters here, who are masters at shielding you from that
level of cynicism and skepticism.
SCHULTZ: Lot of people wondering if he‘s going to win the Masters.
I‘ll be surprised if he makes the cut.
SMITH: He‘ll make the cut. He‘s the best in the world. He‘ll make
SCHULTZ: Switching sports now. I‘ll tell you who‘s making the cut,
from Mayville, North Dakota, formally of the University of North Dakota,
head coach at Northern Iowa, the giant killer of the tournament, Northern
Iowa. Ben Jacobson‘s team takes down Kansas
SMITH: I was stunned. I interviewed him this morning on my show on
Fox Sports Radio. It was an absolutely sensational performance by the
entire team. They played some defense. They got big-time perimeter play
from their guards. They controlled the tempo. Kansas only had one lead
throughout the game. I think, more importantly, Kansas walked in there
with a level of arrogance.
As Coach Bill Self (ph) said, it‘s rare that you get the overall
number one seed in the NCAA tournament. It‘s an opportunity you absolutely
must capitalize on. They didn‘t do so. Northern Iowa is moving on.
SCHULTZ: Stephen A., great to have you with us.
SMITH: All right. Take care.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, the Tea Party reared its ugly, racist head this
weekend. It might have galvanized Democratic unity. Maryland Congressman
Elijah Cummings will put it all together and in perspective with us next
here on THE ED SHOW. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Finally tonight on THE ED SHOW, we‘re in the end zone for
health care. Here‘s how the final steps of the process will play out:
tomorrow morning, President Obama will sign the Senate health care reform
bill into law. As soon as that happens, Senate Democrats can move to pass
the fixes to the bill through reconciliation. The Republicans are going to
do whatever they can to obstruct. Senate Democrats think they could pass
the fixes by the end of this week.
For more let me bring in Maryland Congressman Elijah Cummings.
Congressman, good to have you with us.
REP. ELIJAH CUMMINGS (D), MARYLAND: Always a pleasure.
SCHULTZ: You bet, sir. Thank you. The leap of faith by the House,
I guess you could say, has been taken. How do you feel about where the
Senate stands right now?
CUMMINGS: I think we‘ll be fine with the Senate. When Harry Reid
came over on Saturday and made it clear that he had a majority of the
Senate that would vote for the fixes, we were fine. The up and down vote,
I‘m very—I trust him. I trust the Senate that they‘ll do the right
thing. I don‘t think Leader Reid would have come over and made a statement
to our entire Democratic caucus if such were not the case. He said he had
the signatures, and I believe him.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, did you see the letter? Do you know what was
in the letter? I mean, there‘s a lot of devil in the detail here about,
you know, when it comes to fixing this bill and doing the reconciliation
fixes on this. Are you comfortable with the language in the letter?
CUMMINGS: I did see a letter that was addressed to us in the House
that laid out all the things the Senate was willing to do. It was from
Leader Reid. I was very pleased.
CUMMINGS: Ed, let me say this, that you know, I know that—I‘ve
been listening to you over the last few minutes. I know there are a lot of
efforts on the part of the Republicans to stop this. But you know what?
They‘re going to have to go out there and tell kids that may have chronic
conditions that we want to take away something that the Congress has given
you. They have to say to people, we‘re going to take away this ban on
I think—you know, at some point, I think the American people are
going to say, what is this all about? Why aren‘t you standing up for me?
Why aren‘t you helping me to make my family safe and provide them with the
care they need?
SCHULTZ: It‘s a tough campaign to run saying you‘re going to take
stuff away from people.
CUMMINGS: That‘s exactly right.
SCHULTZ: I find it amazing that the Republicans, in our coverage
yesterday, all of them said people they don‘t believe the CBO and the
CUMMINGS: You know, our Republican friends have a tendency—if
the CBO says what they want them to say, they‘re happy. If they don‘t
they‘re unhappy. The fact is we‘re going to get this done. I‘m going to
be at the White House, along with many of my colleagues, and watch the
president make history.
I‘m telling you, Ed, we as Democrats—we‘re going to have to be on
the offense. We‘ve got to let folks know exactly what this bill is all
about and how many benefits it has, not only for folks, for them, but for a
generations yet unborn.
SCHULTZ: Finally, congressman, you have seen a lot in your lifetime
and been through a lot. Did the antics outside the Capitol yesterday help
galvanize Democrats and—go ahead.
CUMMINGS: No doubt about it. No doubt about it. I think when you
have an icon like John Lewis being called the “N” word and others—
another one of my colleagues, Emanuel Cleaver, being spat upon—those
kind of things make people more emboldened to do the right thing. The main
thing, too, it does is it makes us all determined not to be distracted.
That‘s what the opposition wants. We have to make sure we remember who
we‘re fighting for and not necessarily who we‘re fighting against.
SCHULTZ: Congressman Elijah Cummings, always great to have you with
us. Appreciate your conversation.
CUMMINGS: My pleasure, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Tonight, in our text survey, I asked did passage of the
health care reform renew your faith in President Obama‘s leadership? We
had more than 17,000 respond; 91 percent of you said yes; nine percent of
you said no.
That‘s THE ED SHOW. I‘m Ed Schultz. We‘re back tomorrow night.
Coming up next, “HARDBALL” with Chuck Todd. It starts right here on the
place for politics, MSNBC.
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