Guests: Mike Honda, Brian Bilbray, Jesse Jackson, John Feehery, Laura
Flanders, Rep. George Miller, Katrina Vanden Heuvel.
HOST: Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW
tonight from New York.
These stories have got my hot buttons cranked up tonight.
President Obama is taking the immigration issue head on, getting after
it. He says Arizona‘s new immigration law will lead to American citizens
being harassed and having their civil rights violated.
Much more on that in just a moment.
The president‘s hometown of Chicago is in a state of emergency when it
comes to violent crime. The Reverend Jesse Jackson is going to be sounding
the alarm on that. We‘ll visit with him on the program.
And the midterm momentum could be shifting to the Democrats, why one
Democratic leader is predicting a summer surge for the party.
Plus, a new poll out shows racial profiling is not a good re-election
strategy for Republican Governor Jan Brewer. We, of course, will have that
and a text poll coming up.
This is the story that‘s got me fired up tonight.
Racism, obviously, is never the way to go. The Arizona anti-
immigration bill has ignited a firestorm of controversy across America with
copycat legislation on the way. The president put it this way—
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You can imagine if you
are Hispanic-American in Arizona, you‘re great grandparents may have been
there before Arizona was even a state. But now, suddenly, if you don‘t
have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you‘re going
to be harassed. That‘s something that could potentially happen. That‘s
not the right way to go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: You know, that sound bite really hit me. I mean, the
magnitude of what the president just said.
The president of the United States of America just talked to people in
a crowd saying you might be needing some papers to stay legal in America.
Now, the president is a constitutional scholar and a person of color. He
is uniquely qualified and understands why this law is un-American and
The story also has the attention of America‘s top law enforcement
official. He is Attorney General Eric Holder.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HOLDER, ATTORNEY GENERAL: That law is an unfortunate one. I
think that it is, I fear, subject to potential abuse. And I‘m very
concerned about the wedge that it could draw between communities that law
enforcement is supposed to serve and those of us in law enforcement.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: I believe Eric Holder is absolutely right on that. The
Arizona law abuses civil rights, equal rights, and the very Constitution
you conservatives for so many years have just wrapped yourselves in, saying
that the Democrats don‘t understand it.
Republicans are starting to see the entire fake populist momentum die
because of this issue. Tea Party golden boy and Florida GOP Senate
candidate Marco Rubio isn‘t on board. Rubio said he was concerned about
the Arizona law‘s “reasonable suspicion provisions, where individuals can
be pulled over because someone suspects they may not be legal in this
Former Florida governor Jeb Bush understands why this isn‘t the way to
go. He said, “It‘s difficult for me to imagine how you‘re going to enforce
this law. It places a significant burden on local law enforcement, and you
have civil liberties issues that are significant as well.”
Amen to that.
Even John McCain‘s buddy, Lindsey Graham, calls the law
unconstitutional. The South Carolina senator said, “What happened in
Arizona is that good people are so afraid of an out-of-control border, that
they had to resort to a law that I think is unconstitutional. It doesn‘t
represent the best way forward.”
OK. So these Republicans are starting to warm up to the idea that,
you know, maybe this isn‘t a good idea. Well, don‘t let Republicans fool
you. They know immigration is what killed them in 2006 and in 2008. The
grand old white party can‘t afford to look racist on immigration, can they?
President Obama knows he has the righties cornered.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: I will bring the majority of Democrats to the table in getting
this done. But I‘ve got to have some help from the other side.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Don‘t bank on it. The Republicans don‘t have the moral
character to do immigration right now.
Their party is about one thing, and that is hating President Obama. I
believe that. That‘s my opinion. I do not believe any way, shape or form
that Republicans want to see President Barack Obama have any success
The lack of Republican leadership at the federal level is opening the
door for racial, radical action at the state level. Texas lawmaker Debbie
Riddle plans to introduce—now here we go—a similar bill in Texas.
She said, “If our federal government did their job, then Arizona wouldn‘t
have to take this action, and neither would Texas.”
That‘s the mindset, the domino theory in all of this.
This squandering political party has been smoked in the last two
election cycles because they don‘t have the guts to take on immigration
head on. All they do is pander to the soft underbelly of the white,
uneducated, low-information voters. They want them to be afraid.
Play the fear card. Why? Because it works.
This is their chance to put the racist element of the Republican Party
in the past and move forward. But I don‘t think they‘ve got the character
or the culture to do it.
Get your cell phones out, folks. Want to know what you think about
all of this tonight.
Tonight‘s text survey question is: Do you think the United States
attorney general should try to stop Arizona‘s anti-immigration law? Text
“A” for yes and text “B” for no to 622639. We‘ll bring you the results
later on in the show.
Joining me now is California Congressman Mike Honda. He co-sponsored
a comprehensive immigration reform bill in the House. He strongly
denounces the Arizona bill.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
We know where you stand on this Arizona bill. You‘re against it. You
think it‘s a racist bill.
But what do you say to American workers who lose their jobs to
undocumented workers because they come in and do the job cheaper? Is that
the free market at work, or is that an injustice? What do you think?
REP. MIKE HONDA (D), CALIFORNIA: Well, it‘s neither. I don‘t think
that‘s even true, that the undocumented are taking jobs away from other
folks. We know in a lot of places in California, those who are
undocumented have gone back to Mexico or to other places where they came
from. So it‘s a bogus argument.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, I have to challenge you on that. There are
construction workers in this country who have lost their jobs because they
are demanding a higher salary. And construction owners take the cheaper
labor which are undocumented workers.
Now, respectfully, you don‘t think that‘s happening?
HONDA: Well, if it‘s happening, then they‘re not going to get the
high quality work that union or well-skilled men can provide.
Getting back to the Arizona—the issue of Arizona—
SCHULTZ: Well, wait a minute. Before you get back to Arizona, I
really want to clear this up. I want to make sure we‘re crystal clear on.
You think American workers are not losing their jobs to undocumented
HONDA: Well, I was in Mexico, in Zacatecas, and I was visiting this
town, the city called Juarez. And a lot of the folks there who admitted
that they had gone to the United States to find work, came back because
there‘s no work.
And so those folks who are doing those—that used to do that work
have left. And if there‘s any jobs left, I don‘t think that there‘s going
to be that kind of competition. I don‘t think that it makes that kind of
economic impact. And I think that the size of the problem that is being
pointed out is not—doesn‘t measure to this kind of complex problem that
we‘re faced with in the other areas of immigration reform.
SCHULTZ: Well, respectfully, Congressman, I‘d have to challenge you
on that. I could bring in union leader after union leader on here telling
that you that there‘s a lot of folks that are out of work because we‘ve got
an illegal immigration problem.
I don‘t agree at all with what‘s happening in Arizona, in the way
they‘re going about it. I think it does set up the table for racial
profiling and a lot of injustices. But in the same sense, we‘ve got
American workers who are not at work because it‘s all about cheap labor.
What should Arizona do, in your opinion? What should we do as a
country with this issue?
HONDA: Well, as a country, then, the issue of losing jobs to the
undocumented, let‘s, number one, provide a way for them so they can become
documented and legalized. The other is, let‘s look at those folks who are
hiring folks who are not documented and do something about that. And
that‘s probably one of the things that we want to—we‘re going to need to
address in the comprehensive immigration reform.
SCHULTZ: Do you think a lot of this stems from just a dislike for the
president of the United States?
HONDA: Well, I think that there were a lot of people who were
xenophobic before the president was there. But it doesn‘t set aside the
possibility that they don‘t like a successful Democratic president that‘s
been there and stuck out some of the toughest issues that this country has
ever faced, and was successful. And I think that they‘re afraid that he
may be successful on this one, and I would like to have that challenge put
HONDA: And let me just make a real quick comment about Arizona.
HONDA: The law is requiring or telling law enforcement folks that
they have to do certain kinds of things based upon suspicion. Well, the
Arizona Association of Chiefs of Police and Sheriffs came out against the
Arizona bill, and they said that it‘s burdensome and an intrusion into a
federal role, and that the local police agencies, they depend upon having
confidence of the people in the community in order to get information about
crimes that are about to be committed. And without that unput, you know,
crime is going to run rampant. And so, you know, the police department
understands that trust and confidence with the community, regardless of
their situation, is critical in making sure that the people are safe.
SCHULTZ: Sure it is.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight. Thank you for—
HONDA: Thank you very much.
SCHULTZ: -- bringing us that information tonight, although, I have to
say that I—doing a radio talk show, I have an opportunity to talk to a
lot of Americans across this country. And I have heard phone call after
phone call in recent days since Arizona has taken this issue on at a state
level that one of the big things and one of the big issues for American
workers is that they are losing jobs to undocumented workers.
Now, that‘s not left. It‘s not right. It‘s not center. It‘s the way
And if you have workers flooding our market, somebody isn‘t going to
be working. And it is all about cheap labor.
You have the Republicans over here who absolutely love cheap labor.
And I‘m not quite sure I buy the argument that this is some kind of a
strategy that the Democrats are using so they can get more people and get
more votes. I‘m not in that camp.
Let‘s turn now to Congressman Brian Bilbray, who is the chairman of
the Immigration Reform Caucus.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
You‘re from San Diego. And I have been down in San Diego, and I would
venture to say that if you were to take all the undocumented workers out of
San Diego, you wouldn‘t have a restaurant industry.
Is that a fair statement?
REP. BRIAN BILBRAY ®, CALIFORNIA: Well, Ed, I was born and raised
literally on the border, so I have to say that the great majority of
foreign-born individuals who are working, most of our businesses, specialty
services, are legal. We‘ve got the advantage that we‘re able to have
people come across the border legally, work through the day, and go back.
So, our real problem is the violence, the crime, and the related costs
of that, that gets over there. So, you know, somebody who has grown up
with this issue, I‘ve got to just tell you, it is kind of frustrating, the
way everybody wants to play brinkmanship here, but they don‘t want to admit
the terrible truths here.
More people die every year trying to come into this country illegally,
and were killed in the Oklahoma explosion. But everybody is hungry for the
I think you‘re legitimate, that a lot of this driving is because you
have got businesses that want to exploit cheap labor. And that‘s the
number one source of illegal immigration. If we did more to crack down on
those employers like Congressman Shuler wants to do, we really can nip this
in the bud.
SCHULTZ: All right. Congressman, this crosses all party lines. I
think we have found some common ground here.
You think that it is imperative—and maybe that‘s too strong a word
but how you would describe what we have to do as a country to go after
those who are writing the checks for the cheap labor to the undocumented
workers? I don‘t care what party you‘re in, it‘s wrong. It‘s against the
law. And it‘s creating a problem.
Would you go along with that?
BILBRAY: Absolutely. And, Ed, the way we do it is the way that
Congressman Shuler, a Democrat from North Carolina, and many Democrats and
Republicans sign on to, the SAVE Act, and use the E-Verify that the federal
government and even Congress—and let me tell you, if Congress can use a
system, anybody can use it.
President Obama just implemented it for all federal contractors, and
it‘s a quick, simple way of knowing who‘s legal and who‘s not legal to work
in this country. And once you do that, you separate those employers when
they accidentally hire somebody from those who are purposely doing it. And
then you can really crack down on these guys.
But the problem is it‘s just being held up. We can do this bipartisan
if you allow us to get it done.
SCHULTZ: Well, I‘ll allow you to get it done. I think it‘s long
overdue. But I think it‘s interesting that, all of a sudden, it‘s boiled
to this point in Arizona.
I mean it‘s been this way for years, as you just said. So why wasn‘t
this done on President Bush‘s watch? It‘s almost as if they‘re trying to
target this problem because they don‘t like President Obama. At least
that‘s my perspective.
But let me ask you—we‘re starting to see some copycat legislation.
Utah, Colorado, Texas, even Ohio is talking about this.
Is this the right way to go? Don‘t you think this sets the table for
BILBRAY: Well, Ed, actually, we do this under a federal program
called 287-G all over this country. And you have got to remember when you
read the law, you‘ve got to read—take a look at it. But it says that
you can only use probable cause if you have a legal contact. In other
words, you pull over somebody in a van, and all at once 35 people next to
the border runs out. The law enforcement officer is going to think it‘s
SCHULTZ: OK. So is the president wrong? I mean, the president
thinks—and the example that he gave was that you might be in this
country for a long time and, all of a sudden, you might be targeted by law
Do you think the president is overreaching on that?
BILBRAY: I don‘t think the president‘s read the bill. The president
is implementing the G program across this country. So I think if the
president takes the time as Dan Lungren, who is a former attorney general
of California, read it, and said, boy, this is nothing like what is being
claimed it is.
And so I think once the president looks at it, the quotes and the
conditions in this bill were actually taken right from the Supreme Court
rulings, that condition, when an officer can make contact or not, you have
probable cause, is by far the constitutional way. And that‘s why it‘s
important that the governor—
SCHULTZ: Well, reasonable suspicion and probable cause are two
I‘m out of time in this segment. Got to have you back to talk more
about it. I appreciate you joining us tonight, Congressman. Thank you.
BILBRAY: Thank you very much. And keep standing up for the working
class jobs. OK?
SCHULTZ: It is about the working folks. There‘s no doubt about it.
I mean, it‘s all about fairness, and it‘s about protecting the laws, but
not having racial profiling. I think we can reach it.
Coming up, Fox News founder Roger Ailes, he‘s become a bigger “Psycho
Talker” than O‘Reilly, Beck and Hannity all rolled into one. I‘ll tell
you about that. Well, actually, you can decide in the “Zone.”
And the RNC is accusing the president and the party of shamelessly
race baiting. Really? It sure takes one to know one.
More on that at the bottom of the hour.
Plus, Rielle Hunter tells Oprah she‘s not a home wrecker.
And the Coast Guard is setting that oil slick on fire.
You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW and thanks for watching tonight.
This is a serious story, big-time. Violent crimes have surged in the
city of Chicago this year. So far, in 2010, murders are more than 10
percent higher than the same time this year of 2009. Now, this equals the
number of American soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan this year.
Reverend Jesse Jackson says Chicago is in a state of emergency. In a
piece in “The Huffington Post,” he emphasizes the need for government to
address the poverty that drives up crime rates.
He writes, “Just as we have decided that Wall Street banks are too big
to fail, the growing number of poor and the unemployed are too big to
abandon. They must no longer be told to wait. Those in the zones of pain,
whether rural Appalachian or Alabama, are too big to fail as well.”
Reverend Jesse Jackson joins us to night.
Reverend, thanks for taking this issue on. It is huge. And I think
it has a lot to do with the fact of gutting our infrastructure, outsourcing
jobs. And it‘s all coming home to roost.
Reverend, what do you think?
REV. JESSE JACKSON, RAINBOW PUSH COALITION: You‘re looking at the
cities, plants closing, jobs leaving, tax base eroding, homes facing
foreclosure, drugs and guns coming. And there is no policy to offset that
It‘s not just the number who are killed, but injured. Last week, in a
12-hour span, 25 were shot, seven killed. So the growth industry happens
to be emergency rooms and funeral homes. And so this is now in the class
of a state of emergency.
We need right now to address it in a meaningful way. And I‘m
convinced that part of it has to do with 25 percent adult unemployment, 50
percent youth unemployment, with no place to go. We need targeted jobs and
job training, open up these trade unions for skilled development, and
organize adult recreation, and revive the ban on assault weapons.
SCHULTZ: OK. A ban on assault weapons is what you‘re talking about.
Also, targeted jobs and job training; organized and regulated recreation
for kids; a comprehensive urban policy plan.
Do you think this will turn it around? And where‘s the money going to
JACKSON: Well, the money—they have to determine priorities. We
bail Wall Street out without linkage to reinvestment, without linkage to
lending. And so now they‘re debating, how much of it should they have for
bonuses? In the substance (ph) of abandoned urban America.
And these numbers keep rising. There is a growing sense of
We‘re cutting teachers‘ jobs and closing schools. We‘re cutting
public transportation. Workers are being cut -- 1,100 workers were cut,
routes are cut and fares up. We‘re cutting public housing. And so there‘s
no plan that which is essential, jobs and development.
SCHULTZ: Yes. What about bringing in the National Guard? The city‘s
mayor and also the police superintendent, they‘re not in favor of that. Do
you think that needs to be done?
JACKSON: Well, at least it ought to be a matter of discussion,
because it‘s embarrassing to the mayor. But the people who are being shot,
I sent 120 children to—on a tour of schools two weeks ago. One of
the kids in front of his house and the recreation park was shot. He‘s
still in the hospital.
And so, many kids would not go to school, are afraid to go to school.
Others cannot open businesses, afraid people will not shop.
So you have these zones of danger. And we should not have to live
that way. This is absolutely an emergency, and it must be declared as
SCHULTZ: Is it as bad as the ‘60s, or worse? What do you think?
JACKSON: It‘s a different kind of—this kind of urban abandonment
terror is different.
In the ‘60s, we were marching (INAUDIBLE). That was one kind of a
reaction. But the idea now of having so much—you know, in Chicago, it‘s
illegal to sell guns. But they‘re about to—a ban that won the Supreme
But there are nine gun shops around the city. We know where the guns
are made. We know where they‘re sold from.
In Iraq, we would call these insurgents. In Iraq, if we knew where
the guns were made and sold, we‘d break it up.
Somehow, in America, we don‘t quite get it. So we say, look at
Afghanistan. We say—Kabul says it is urgent. We need a budget,
security, targets and timetables.
We need the same plan for urban America—urgency, budget, goals,
targets, timetables. We can no longer abandon urban America without paying
a big price for it. And it‘s just fundamentally wrong to leave people in
SCHULTZ: Reverend Jackson, we‘ll bring you back, obviously, to talk
about that immigration issue when we have more time. I appreciate your
time on this issue tonight.
JACKSON: Man, dragnet justice is just un-American, immoral and
SCHULTZ: Yes. Good to have you with us, Reverend. Thank you.
Coming up, Roger Ailes may have spent too much time in the Florida sun
this week. He‘s acting crazier than a fox in a hen house. He‘ll bake in
the “Zone” next.
SCHULTZ: And in “Psycho Talk” tonight, the head of the right-wing
network across the street, Roger Ailes.
Well, in a speech down in Florida the other day, he attacked the
health care bill as unconstitutional. But then, afterwards, he tried to
pass himself off as an unbiased media guy saying, “I don‘t do politics, I
Not only do you do politics, Roger, your people fundraise for the
Republican Party. Didn‘t you notice?
Last week, Media Matters identified 20 Fox News personalities who have
endorsed, raised money or campaigned for Republicans. But Roger continued
to defend his network when he was asked about Hannity being yanked for
hosting a show at a Cincinnati Tea Party fund-raiser.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROGER AILES, PRESIDENT, FOX NEWS: Sometimes mistakes happen. If
they happen, you go on the air quickly, say this is what happened, this is
what we did, and keep moving. And that‘s what we do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Well, you may want to communicate that policy to the rest of
Fox News, because that‘s not what they do. Hannity never addressed the
decision to cancel his Tea Party appearance.
And remember when Bill O‘Reilly threw this lie out?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O‘REILLY, FOX NEWS: We researched to find out if anybody on Fox
News had ever said you‘re going to jail if you don‘t buy health insurance.
Nobody‘s ever said it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: That‘s one of my all-time favorites. Even after the other
media outlets pulled all the clips of people on Fox News saying that the
health care bill would send you to jail, O‘Reilly still didn‘t admit his
mistake. In fact, he doubled down on the lie.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O‘ REILLY, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: What I said is absolutely true.
Nobody at Fox News reported inaccurately about the Obama-care prison
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Roger, they‘re doing news, huh? Even after all the crazy.
Roger still wasn‘t done. The nut truly earned his wing by comparing Sarah
Palin to former vice-presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AILES: Geraldine Ferraro has been a contributor to Fox News for over
ten years. We never had any problems with that. Suddenly we sign Sarah
Palin in a similar position, and we have a problem. Now whose fault is
that? We think we are fair and balanced. We think the others aren‘t.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Roger, you thinking that what your network does is news, let
alone fair and balanced, is psycho talk.
Coming up, aside from a whole lot of drama, I don‘t think the Congress
accomplished anything in their Golden smackdown yesterday. I‘ve been
accused of being too hard on the Dems. Hey, I‘m just calling it the way I
see it. Put this to my panel coming up, with rapid fire response.
And get this, the Coast Guard just approved a plan to light the oil
spill on fire. I‘ll tell you how they‘re going to be doing that in the
Playbook. Plus, righties are saying that the president is playing the race
card from the bottom of the deck. I‘ll explain. I‘ve got my thoughts on
that coming up next. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: The Battle Ground tonight. Welcome back to THE ED SHOW, and
thanks for watching. Well, it looks like the Democrats have found the soft
underbelly of the Republicans. They just can‘t pull an all nighter, can
they? Now I‘m going to quote the Goldman Sachs here, “this is a bleeping
deal.” Senate Democrats called three votes to start debate on financial
reform. The GOP held the party line and voted against every single one of
them. The third one was today.
Today, the Democrats said, OK, all right, we‘ll stay here all night if
necessary, even if we have to rollout the cots. Well, suddenly, the
Republicans, well, we can‘t do that. That would screw up the country club.
Just moments ago, the Senate voted unanimously to move to debate to
tomorrow afternoon, which is all good.
All this nonsense and time wasted just to start the debate. Then
we‘ll have another vote to actually pass the bill. And the Republicans are
going to be obstructing that all over again, and again and again. That‘s
why I just can‘t get too fired up about yesterday‘s dog and pony show on
(BEGNI VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CARL LEVIN (D), MICHIGAN: July 1, 2007, tells the sales force
the top priority is Timberwolf. Your top priority to sell is that
(EXPLETIVE DELETED) deal.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My comment is I didn‘t recall the sales.
LEVIN: OK, you‘re trying to sell a (EXPLETIVE DELETED) deal and it‘s
your top priority. Come on, Mr. Sparks. Should Goldman Sachs be trying to
sell—and by the way, it sold a lot of it after that date. Should
Goldman Sachs be trying to sell a (EXPLETIVE DELETED) deal?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well—
LEVIN: Can you answer that one yes or no?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: That‘s great stuff, isn‘t it? We going to get any
legislation out that of that? Maybe. The Goldman hearing was nothing but
political grandstanding, in my opinion. I don‘t believe financial reform
is going to get done. I don‘t. The Republicans don‘t want to rein in Wall
Street. And they will never get onboard with anything this president wants
to do. They‘ll take their chances in the midterm and vilify the Democrats.
That‘s the plan.
I want to get some rapid fire from our panel on this, plus these three
stories tonight. In the Heartland, President Obama issues his harshest
criticism of Arizona‘s anti-immigration law. He flat out says it will lead
to American citizens being harassed.
The RNC is accusing President Obama and the DNC chair, Tim Kaine, of
race baiting to turn out Democrats in the midterms.
And I‘ll get our panel‘s take on the Senate Republicans‘ caving on
debating the financial reform bill.
With us to night, Laura Flanders, author of “Blue Grit,” and host of
“Grit TV,” and John Feehery, Republican strategist, who I appreciate always
starts this show with a good smile on his face. And then sometimes it goes
down hill from there.
John, good to have you with us. Laura, nice to have you with us.
Always a spirited debate.
All right, what‘s going on? How, in your opinion—or maybe you
don‘t agree with the RNC here, John—is the president race baiting.
JOHN FEEHERY, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: I think what the president is
trying to do is trying to turn out his base. I think he sees that as the
African-American vote and Latino vote. He said that. And that, in a
sense, instead of appealing to all the American people, he is trying to
appeal to certain segments of the population. In a sense, I think the RNC
is right. He is trying to turn out his base, his base based on race. I
think that‘s wrong. He should try to appeal to al the American people.
SCHULTZ: Laura, what do you think?
LAURA FLANDERS, “GRIT TV”: You know, when you want to go up against
anti-racists, you call them racists. Up against anti-sexists, you call
them sexists. It‘s the oldest trick in the book. The point here is that
Republicans don‘t have any actual policies to attract their voters to the
polls. So, instead, they‘re going to sell them paranoia. The Democrats
are doing nothing wrong except calling those who voted for them in 2008,
disproportionately, to turn out again for the midterms. This is bunk.
SCHULTZ: All right, let‘s talk about the law in Arizona. The
president has weighed in on this on the stump yesterday with his middle
class tour. Here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: You can imagine if you are a Hispanic-American in Arizona,
your great grandparents may have been there before Arizona was even a
state. But now suddenly if you don‘t have your papers and you took your
kid out to get ice cream, you‘re going to be harassed. That‘s something
that could potentially happen. That‘s not the right way to go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Laura, it sounds like the president has made up his mind.
What do you think?
FLANDERS: I hope it‘s not like financial reform, a lot of
grandstanding and then no actual change comes out of it. What Arizona‘s
going to go the way over this that it did over the Dr. King holiday.
Eventually it‘s going to blink. We‘re going to see a change. It‘s going
to be declared unconstitutional, this law, I bet.
In the meantime, let‘s think about those people and what their lives
are going to be like living there between now and then. They say it‘s not
about race. They say oh, no, we won‘t be racially profiling. But that‘s
what this is, legal racial profiling. And people are going to suffer until
it gets rolled back.
SCHULTZ: What do you think, John? That was a strong statement by the
FEEHERY: I think it‘s an unfortunate use of language. I would like
someone to be sympathetic to the folks whose houses are getting broken
into, the rancher who got killed, the people who are being abused by folks
who are coming in from over the border and causing all the crime.
FEEHERY: -- two of most violent states in America. That‘s because of
the influx of the drug war, really, over the border. And it‘s really
unfortunate because the situation is desperate in Arizona. And the
president needs to fix the problem and not try to make the situation worse.
SCHULTZ: The president has doubled the DEA agents. He has doubled
the ATF agents. They put more troops—should I say more law enforcement
officials on the border. The fact is there is already laws on the books to
deal with all the crime that‘s taking place. John, isn‘t this just a
manpower issue at this point?
FEEHERY: I think it is a manpower issue. I think it needs some
focus. The fact of the matter is it‘s not the focus. The drug war is
spilling out over the border. And it‘s putting our citizens in danger.
FLANDERS: Violent crime of 100,000 of the population in Arizona is
down in 2009 over 2005. There are some facts out here that are simply
SCHULTZ: So, Laura, I have not heard that. Violent crime is down in
FLANDERS: Compare 2005 to 2008. There were more crimes per 100,000
population in 2005 than there are today.
SCHULTZ: So when you take a look at what the Arizona residents are
saying, 70 percent of the residents say that they‘re in favor of what is
taking place here with this law.
FLANDERS: Pandering works at the polls. Let‘s face it, we‘ve had to
struggle against this kind of pandering our whole lives in this country.
We‘ll keep moving in the direction of greater progress and diversity.
People live in mixed communities today. We‘re not going back. But these
kind of laws don‘t help.
SCHULTZ: I tell you, the debate is hitting every state in the union.
You‘re looking at Texas now talking about a copycat law, along with
Colorado, Utah, and Ohio. And look what‘s happening down in Alabama in the
gubernatorial race, where the Republican Tim James went so far as to say
this: if he‘s governor, it‘s going to be speaking English. Here it is.
We believe it‘s coming. Here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIM JAMES, CANDIDATE FOR GOVERNOR OF ALABAMA: I‘m Tim James. Why do
our politicians make us give driver‘s license exams in 12 languages? This
is Alabama. We speak English. If you want to live here, learn it. We‘re
only giving that test in English if I‘m governor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: What do you think, Laura?
FLANDERS: The issues in the American mind today are the war, are
jobs, are the economy, Wall Street reform, health care, you name it.
SCHULTZ: But does that play—does that commercial play to a certain
sect of the population that would be so strong to get him elected?
FLANDERS: Who the heck knows what happens here? But what I‘m looking
at and what I think is important is where are the policy proposals? Where
are the response to American crisis? This is, again, paranoia and
distraction. Will it work? Maybe. But I don‘t think that‘s what we‘re
going to see really turn the tide in November.
SCHULTZ: Is it that, John? What do you think?
FEEHERY: Well, I think it is jobs. I think it‘s security. I think
it‘s the future of the country. I think that, for some folks, English is
an important—English as an official language is an important issue. But
I think mostly it is jobs and the economy and the future of the country and
debt. I think those are the bigger issues.
SCHULTZ: But that commercial, do you think that‘s a good thing? I
mean, isn‘t that race baiting in that commercial, John? I mean, we know
who doesn‘t speak English.
FEEHERY: I don‘t think it‘s race baiting. I think English as an
official language has been an issue that has been in the American political
spectrum for a long time. This guy is using it. I don‘t think, you know,
it‘s race baiting whatsoever.
SCHULTZ: OK. Laura Flanders, John Feehery, good to have you us with
Coming up, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid could be in for a major
surprise this November. I think the health care bill is going to expand
their majority. I‘ll ask a man who helped it make it happen. He‘s
optimistic. California Congressman George Miller is next on THE ED SHOW.
Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: In our Playbook tonight, it‘s worker‘s memorial day, which
honors all workers who die, are injured or get sick on the job. Today, the
president of the United States issued a proclamation recognizing the
occasion and mentioned the 29 miners who were killed in the explosion in
West Virginia mine earlier this month. At a Senate hearing yesterday,
United Mine Workers President Cecil Roberts spoke about the unjust risk
miners face as they go off to work.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CECIL ROBERTS, UNITED MINE WORKERS: A young man of 25 years old wrote
his mother and his fiancee a letter. He has a young baby, which I happened
to meet on Sunday. And said if I die in this coal mine, please tell
everyone that I love them. That‘s the kind of letter people used to write
when they went off to Vietnam in my era. That‘s not the kind of letters
they‘re supposed to write when they get their dinner bucket and go to work
in the United States of America.
Congress should stand up and take a position. We‘re not going to
tolerate this. This is the United States of America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Joining me now is Democratic Congressman George Miller, a
Californian. He is chair of the Education and Labor Committee and sits on
the Natural Resources Committee. Congressman, good to have you with us
tonight on this very serious subject. I don‘t think anybody could say it
any better than Cecil Roberts. Is it time for action? Will something
happen in the wake of this terrible travesty?
REP. GEORGE MILLER (D), CALIFORNIA: I think clearly it‘s time for
action. I do believe that the Congress will respond. The Senate has
started its hearings. We have initiated our investigation. And we‘re
fully prepared to do that. We understand exactly what has taken place
here. The mining laws, the mine safety laws have been controlled by the
mining industry. The loopholes have been created by the mining industry.
And too many administrations have looked the other way as those loopholes
have been created.
You listen to the mine safety organization say yesterday in front of
the Senate how long it has been—and in some cases, they have never used
provisions of the law, because they knew if they use the provisions of the
law, there would be a political response from the mining companies, through
their elected representatives, and to the Congress of the United States, or
to the administration.
That has got to stop. These miners are right. Cecil Roberts is
right. When they go to work, they have to assume that they‘re coming home
safe at night and so do their families.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, what‘s it take to shut down a mine? Is there
going to be any legislation put on the table that will change the criteria?
Two or three violations in a row, you have to shut her down until you
address it? Why can‘t Congress be more strict about that?
MILLER: It‘s the only penalty that they fully understand. If you
look at the history of these mines, these miners are put up against the
corporate policy that is production over safety. When in doubt, you choose
production. If you don‘t, you‘re not a good miner. You‘re not meeting
your responsibility to the corporation. That‘s how you get into these
unsafe situations, because miners are terrified of telling about the
hazards that are present, afraid that they will be fired, the retributions
will be taken against them or their families.
This has got to stop. I mean, this is from the 17th century. It‘ got
to stop in this country.
SCHULTZ: I think it speaks volumes that Mr. Blankenship did not show
up at the hearing or anybody on the mining company on the question on this.
Let‘s switch subjects now. I want to talk about health care for just a
moment. This is Jim Clyburn, your colleague, talking about the health care
bill and how they‘re going to handle it on the road talking to
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JIM CLYBURN (D), MAJORITY WHIP: We‘re going to go out to the
American people and, as Terry has said, let them know exactly what‘s s in
this bill. What we have to do now is go out and respond to a lot of these
questions that have been raised and misrepresentations that have been made
about this legislation. We plan to do that.
I think you‘re going to see a marked difference in this August than
what you heard last August.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: What do you think, Congressman Miller. Is this just a
matter of time before you can really explain the benefits of this bill?
Will there be a windfall for the Democrats?
MILLER: I think we‘ve been explaining since the bill is passed.
Already, we have to catch up, because the insurance companies have fallen
in line and said they‘re going to keep children on the policies until
they‘re 26. They said they‘re not going to yank policies away your policy
any longer just when you need. They take you policy away. Insurance
companies have agreed not to do that. People with preexisting conditions
will be able to go to—
MILLER: Ed, these are benefits that are going to people realize right
now. Right now, the insurance companies are saying, because they
understand that the public is against them, and against the activities that
they‘ve engage in the past that have been so expensive and have caused the
loss of insurance for millions of American families.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks so
much. I think it will help the Democrats in the midterm.
Final page in our Playbook tonight, the oil spill in the Gulf of
Mexico is growing larger. Crews are still unable to stop the leak; 42,000
gallons of oil a day continue to pour into the ocean. The slick now covers
around 4,400 square miles, almost the size of Jamaica. As of this morning,
it was 15 miles off of the coast of Louisiana.
The Coast Guard has approved a series of small contained fires to help
burn off the oil off the surface. The first test burn was just started
about 30 minutes -- 30 miles east of the Mississippi Delta.
Coming up, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer‘s new immigration law could
land her in the unemployment line. “The Nation‘s” Katrina Vanden Heuvel
will join me next to talk about this issue.
SCHULTZ: Finally, tonight on THE ED SHOW, I find it ironic that the
RNC is accusing Democrats of race baiting as Republicans in Arizona are
legalizing racial profiling. The left doesn‘t have to scare minorities
into voting Democratic. The Republicans are taking care of all of that by
themselves. In Arizona, a new poll shows Hispanics are flocking to
Democratic candidate Terry Goddard for governor, who is challenging the
Republican Governor Jan Brewer.
A new Public Policy poll shows Goddard with a slim lead over Brewer,
47 to 44. Among white voters, Brewer leads Goddard by eight points, 49
percent to 41 percent. She got a bump after signing the anti-immigration
law, but it‘s nowhere near the bump Goddard got from Hispanic voters. He
now has a 46-point advantage over Brewer.
Joining me now is Katrina Vanden H Heuvel, editor of “The Nation.”
Katrina, is this just a sleeping giant that has awakened in Arizona in
favor of the Democrats?
KATRINA VANDEN HEUVEL, “THE NATION”: Well, we‘ve seen this giant
awaken over the last many years. This is a political crisis for the
Republicans. It‘s mostly a pale, male, stale party, and it‘s pushing
these mean, unjust, Draconian laws in the face of a unified, surging,
engaged Latino electorate. Yes, we‘re going to see real gains. It‘s a
moral crisis, too, but politically, you‘re seeing the over-reach, the
demagoguery of Jan Brewer in Arizona.
You have Jeb Bush, you have Tea Partier Rubio in Florida, Mike
Huckabee, you even have right wing nativist Tom Tancredo saying this is
going to become a full-time employment program for constitutional lawyers,
and not bring any security to the citizens of Arizona.
So, yes, it‘s a crisis for the Republican party. But the vacuum that
was left by the failure to push through comprehensive immigration reform,
which is now a real priority, is what you‘re going to see in Arizona. What
you see, that‘s what the consequences of failure to move on a clear pathway
to citizenship for 12 million undocumented immigrants.
SCHULTZ: It seems like the politically hip thing to do right now, if
you‘re a legislator, is to bring forth the same kind of bill Arizona has.
They‘re doing that in a number of states. What do you think?
VANDEN HEUVEL: I think it‘s going to kill them. I mean, I look back
to history, Ed, look at 1994, prop 187. Pete Wilson, he rides a short
little wave of racially ethnic grievance, but he then marginalized the
Republican party in that state into irrelevance. This is a big mistake for
the Republican party. I think this is a critical moment for the party to
think sorting moral and political seriousness, because those who want to
have any future for the Republican party in this country, which has a
demographic arc, bringing Latino voters, a surging new American majority in
these next decades—they‘re going to consign themselves to the dust bin
of history if they continue with these mean, ugly, Draconian policies that
do nothing, again, for the real problems and the security of citizens in
Arizona and around this world—this country.
SCHULTZ: I thought the president was really well defined on this.
VANDEN HEUVEL: Very human.
SCHULTZ: When he made that comment last night.
VANDEN HEUVEL: He‘s talking about the fact that you might see John
McCain, one of his daughters, be picked up in the streets of Arizona
because she has brown skin. So I think this kind of state-sanctioned
racial profiling --
SCHULTZ: It‘s dangerous. Yes.
VANDEN HEUVEL: Dangerous, very dangerous for our country that prides
itself on being a decent, law-abiding country.
SCHULTZ: Katrina, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.
Our text survey question, I asked you, should the United States
attorney general try to stop Arizona‘s anti-immigration law. Seventy five
percent of you said yes; 25 percent of you said no.
That‘s THE ED SHOW. I‘m Ed Schultz. “HARDBALL” with Chris Matthews
starts right now. We‘ll see you tomorrow night, right here on MSNBC.
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