Guests: Anthony Weiner, Bob Shrum, Jonathan Alter, Patrick Fahey, Holland
Cooke, Karen Hanretty, Blaine Rummel, Frank Pallone
ED SCHULTZ, HOST: Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW tonight, live from Minneapolis.
These stories are hitting “My Hot Buttons” at this hour.
Republican Congressman “Smoky” Joe Barton, he issued one of the lamest, fakest apologies I think we‘ve seen come from a politician calling for BP‘s $20 billion commitment to the Gulf Coast, oh, it‘s a shakedown. Well, wait a minute now. It‘s a good shakedown.
The Republicans claim he doesn‘t speak for the party. Well, let them prove it by stripping him of his leadership post on the Energy Committee.
I‘ve got a commentary on that coming up in just a moment.
A report today says Rahm Emanuel and the president are ready to part ways. It claims Rahm‘s fed up with the idealism inside the Obama White House.
And New Jersey‘s Republican governor is all about tax cuts for millionaires. It‘s like Bush and Cheney, those years all over again. Senior citizens and disabled Americans are the ones who would bear the brunt of what they really want to do in New Jersey.
Commentary on that coming up a little bit later, as well.
But this is the story that has me fired up at this hour.
You know, let‘s see, it‘s June 21st, the longest day of the year. And the Democrats are finally starting to see the light?
Texas Congressman Joe Barton has put the Republican Party at a crossroads. Let‘s see, you‘re either with big oil or you‘re not with big oil.
The Obama administration has the minority party I think backed into a major political corner.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAHM EMANUEL, WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: That‘s not a political gaffe. Those were prepared remarks.
That is a philosophy. That is an approach to what they see. They see the aggrieved party here is BP, not the fishermen.
And remember, this is not just one person. Rand Paul, running for Senate in Kentucky, what did he say? He said the way BP was being treated was un-American.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Wow. Rahm Emanuel is finally showing us some Chicago politics.
The Republicans are shaking in their boots because they know President Obama is going to make Joe Barton the poster child for the midterms, and he should, because that‘s what they‘re all about.
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell fired back today at the White House chief of staff and the president.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL ®, MINORITY LEADER: Now, I‘ve noticed that the president‘s chief of staff had some ideas over the weekend about how to frame up the November elections. I can‘t think of a better example of how detached Democrats seem to be at the moment from the concerns of the American people. Americans want to know what‘s being done to fix a broken pipe at the bottom of the Gulf, not what‘s being done to fix the elections.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Classic, classic, classic Republican move. Attack where they‘re weak.
Sorry, Mitch, the American people know this isn‘t about Rahm Emanuel. This is about the Republicans apologizing to BP. Until you call on Barton to step aside, the Republican Party will own this apology.
Republicans are desperate to change the subject, as they always are.
Listen to Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI ®, ALASKA: Let‘s not be distracted by saying, you know, Joe Barton made this gaffe or this inappropriate comment. Let‘s focus on what we need to do, which is getting relief to the Gulf, making sure that they have every asset possible, making sure that we‘ve got a claims compensation system that works for them. Let‘s focus on providing what the people of the Gulf need, not pointing fingers back and forth and saying, oh, you know, what you said was wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: What garbage that is, Senator. We, as Americans, we now how to walk and chew gum at the same time. It‘s BS.
What Joe Barton said was absolutely no gaffe. He‘s what the Republican Party is all about—defend big oil, defeat President Obama, win at any cost.
And bottom line is, they have basically turned their backs on the concerns of the American middle class. Let‘s not forget that. The only mistake Joe Barton made was he basically was telling Americans exactly what he thinks so everybody could see.
I think that Barton should step down as ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. And if he doesn‘t do that, if he doesn‘t bear the responsibility of leadership—it‘s about leadership. And if he can‘t do that, then the Republicans are going to have to bear the brunt of it, because no one in the Republican Party has the guts—I think there‘s a couple people out there, but the leadership is fully behind him.
What does that speak to where they really stand? Are they with the corporations or are they with the people? And I don‘t believe that Americans, including myself, can ever view Joe Barton as an honest broker again when it comes to energy policy when he takes the kind of money he takes from big oil and then openly, not a gaffe, but prepared remarks with a statement, apologizes to the very corporation that is butchering our environment and trashing our economy along the Gulf Coast.
Get your cell phones out, folks. I want you to know what you think about all of this tonight.
Tonight‘s next survey question is: Do you think the Republicans have the guts to force Congressman Joe Barton to step down from the Energy Committee? Do they have the guts to do that?
Text “A” for yes, text “B” for no to 622639. We‘ll bring you the results later on in the show.
Now, the political opportunity here, let‘s talk about that.
Joining me now is New York Congressman Anthony Weiner. He serves with Joe Barton on the Energy and Commerce Committee.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
REP. ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK: Thanks, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Why aren‘t Democrats screaming from the top of every building in Washington that this guy needs to be replaced if he‘s this close to big oil and has shown his cards when the Democrats are supposed to be the party that‘s so concerned about climate change and energy and moving the country forward? Why wouldn‘t you want to try to take this guy out just on the shame alone?
WEINER: Well, listen, I‘ve got to tell you something, because it‘s not as if the second ranking member or the Energy and Commerce Committee or the third or fourth doesn‘t reflect those views, as well. Look, there is an indiscriminate support of big oil and big business among the Republican Party. And I have some empathy for Joe Barton.
First of all, I think he‘s a good guy, but he was not anything near even the first to say this. In 10 minutes this afternoon on the Internet, here‘s where I came up with other people who called it a shakedown: Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, Rush Limbaugh, Tom Price. The entire Republican Party.
My concern is we shouldn‘t be focusing on Joe Barton. We should be focusing on what Rahm Emanuel spoke about this weekend. This is a fundamental difference between Democrats and Republicans.
WEINER: They support big business. We support trying to regulate them fairly.
SCHULTZ: Yes, they do. Yes, they do. But all of the people that you named, Congressman, are not in a leadership position. They don‘t chair any committees.
And I have an ethical issue with the Democrats principally here. If you don‘t have the guts to put the pressure on this guy to get him out of this position, how are liberals supposed to really believe that you‘re serious about climate change?
WEINER: Because Joe—
SCHULTZ: Quite frankly, I don‘t care what Michele Bachmann says, and I don‘t think most Americans do. You know my point here.
WEINER: Well, listen, Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh are the leaders of that party. But the point that I‘m trying to make here is, I think we‘ve got to keep our eyes on the prize.
This is not about Joe Barton. What if Joe Barton tomorrow wasn‘t the ranking member? Do you think any way that we‘ve moved any closer to the Republican Party learning lessons here? Absolutely not.
He reflects—to his credit, he reflects what Republicans in Washington believe. You know, some people say that the meaning of a gaffe is saying what you really believe and having someone hear it. That‘s basically what happened here.
This was no gaffe. This reflects the values of the Republican Party.
And I think focusing on one person is not the thing here.
The idea here is very simple. There‘s one party in Washington that is trying to reel in the worst abuses of big oil, trying to make sure the regulations are there in place, and trying to get this cleaned up. And another whose instinctive reaction is to defend big oil. That‘s who will be in charge in Washington if we allow the Republicans to win in November.
SCHULTZ: Well, that‘s the point. I mean, why wouldn‘t you look out for the people right now? But, of course, you‘re saying that the entire Republican philosophy is that.
Barton has taken $1.4 million from the oil and gas industry since 1990. So, I don‘t think his remarks were inappropriate. Heck, he‘s bought and paid for by big oil. I mean, he did exactly what they wanted him to do.
Now, moving forward, let‘s talk politics of this. What‘s the political opportunity here? Just to paint Joe Barton as, this is the real Republican Party and not let the voters forget it?
WEINER: Well, you know, so much of what goes on in Washington is
outside the view of many Americans. Most Americans don‘t keep track of
who‘s regulating what. They‘re interested in how they‘re going to put food
on the table and how they‘re going to protect their job in a tough economy
WEINER: But I‘ll tell you, what we are learning here, this is one of those moments, one of those “ah-ha” moments for the American people where they get to visualize what the world would be like if the Republicans took over the House of Representatives.
Joe Barton, whatever you think of his views, he would be in charge of the most important committee in Congress. So, to the extent that most Americans are not thinking about politics, they‘re thinking about their everyday lives, this is a moment for them to understand that their lives would be very different if the Republicans are successful this November. Every election is a choice, and the choice is the Barton philosophy on managing big oil, which is to give them whatever they want, and our team.
SCHULTZ: He‘s your poster child, there‘s no doubt about it.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
WEINER: Thank you, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Thanks so much.
For more, let‘s bring in Bob Shrum, Democratic strategist and professor at New York University.
Bob, great to have you with us.
Is this actually a campaign‘s dream, to have a target like this politically? What do you think?
BOB SHRUM, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, it‘s pretty extraordinary, because everybody‘s been talking about a Katrina moment, and trying to say that somehow or other, this oil spill was going to be Barack Obama‘s Katrina. Actually, when Joe Barton spoke the other day, he committed the equivalent of, “You did a heck of a job, Brownie.” That‘s going to be the indelible political image out of this, and his offense was not what he said, but that he said it.
He spoke the dark heart of the Republican Party. And it‘s not just a few members of that party.
The Republican House Study Group—I think it‘s over 100 members of the congressional Republicans belong to it—used the word “shakedown.” And it‘s not just the oil issue. It goes across the board. This is, for example, the same party that is stopping extended unemployment compensation benefits so people can feed their families while trying to end the estate tax for billionaires.
SCHULTZ: So, how aggressive should the Democrats be? I mean, obviously, his apology was weak. It‘s not being accepted by many. So, this is the defining moment for the Democrats, isn‘t it?
SHRUM: Oh, I think it‘s several ways it‘s the defining moment.
First, I agree with you, people ought to demand that he step down.
It‘s entirely inappropriate to have him in that job.
But secondly, it‘s a defining moment because it opens the door to a narrative that will create a choice for voters. The Republicans want this election to be a referendum. Are you unhappy with the unemployment? Which, by the way, we‘re hoping that you forget that we caused during the Bush years when the whole economy collapsed just as Obama was coming into office. That‘s what they want this election to be about.
I think what we have to make it about, what Democrats have to make it about, is a choice. And I think that what Barton did was crystallize that choice. It was a moment when the country saw the difference between the two parties.
SCHULTZ: Bob Shrum, always a pleasure. Great to have you with us tonight. Thanks for your insight.
SHRUM: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, there‘s talk that Rahm Emanuel plans to call it quits. Reports say his frustration with the administration has boiled over. The White House says that‘s ludicrous.
I‘ll get “Rapid Fire Response” on the program on that story tonight.
And Michele Bachmann‘s sticking up for BP, and her opponent is on the attack. I‘ll show you the tape.
All that, plus the president is ripping the righties. It‘s about time.
And “The Beckster” is back in the “Zone,” appropriately.
And the Times Square suspect pleads guilty.
You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW, and thanks for watching tonight.
President Obama, I guess you could say, is finally, finally calling out Republican leadership. The president used his entire weekly address to slam the Senate Republicans for stalling on extending the unemployment benefits.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The Republican leadership in the Senate won‘t even allow this legislation to come up for a vote. And if this obstruction continues, unemployed Americans will see their benefits stop.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: But the president didn‘t stop there. He went after Republicans for obstructing to protect BP.
OBAMA: All we ask for is a simple up-or-down vote. That‘s what the American people deserve, just like they deserve an up-or-down vote on legislation that would hold oil companies accountable for the disasters they cause, a vote that‘s also being blocked by the Republican leadership in the Senate.
Right now, the law places a $75 million cap on the amount oil companies must pay. We should remove that cap, but the Republican leadership won‘t even allow a debate or a vote.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: The president has cranked up his language, using the word “obstruction,” and specifically naming Republican leaders who have been rooting for his failure from day one.
For more, let‘s bring in Jonathan Alter, “Newsweek” columnist and author of the book “The Promise: President Obama‘s Year One.”
Jonathan, I find it—I guess my quick take on it is that the president thinks this is all he‘s going to get in his first two years, and now it‘s time to turn to the midterms and remind the American people just who he‘s been fighting all along.
What do you think?
JONATHAN ALTER, COLUMNIST, “NEWSWEEK”: I think there‘s a lot to that. You know, he said that this is going to be a political year, and it‘s time for him to protect the Democratic Congress, make sure that the Republicans don‘t take over.
He got some help from Joe Barton this week. And, you know, he needs to put it to them and put the choice to the American people. “Don‘t go back” is not such a bad approach for this fall.
Now, it‘s true that most elections are about the future, and he needs to keep focused on what‘s going to happen, not just what‘s happened until now. But I think to make the choice as stark as possible, which is what you‘re beginning to see him do, is in his political interest and that of other Democrats.
SCHULTZ: I think he‘s going to have to speak hard to the base, because I just did a seven-city radio town hall tour, and I heard it al over the country, at least in these seven major cities, that there are Democrats that are frustrated that the president hasn‘t been tough enough.
SCHULTZ: What do you make of that?
ALTER: There‘s a lot of them who feel that way. These Democrats, though, have to look into their own souls, their own hearts, their own heads, and ask themselves, do you really want Joe Barton as chairman of the House Energy Committee, this guy who thinks we should apologize to BP? Do you want that crowd back?
And if you don‘t, then get over your qualms about the president, get over your qualms about other Democrats, and get out there and work like hell, because, otherwise, it‘s back to the future. And that future is pretty grim if this crowd of Foxulists, as you might call them, gets back into power.
SCHULTZ: Yes. Well, it‘s going to be interesting to see what their strategy is.
Speaking of soul searching, there was a meeting back in April. As it was quoted in “The New York Times” magazine, Nancy Pelosi said, “Barack Obama, the post-partisan president, continued to go out and shake his head disbelievingly at the culture of Washington, which to the Democrats in the House sounded as if he were saying that his own party was the problem.”
“At a meeting in Nancy Pelosi‘s conference room at end of April to discuss the party‘s election year message, the speaker strolled down to Axelrod‘s end of the table and delivered the message bluntly: Obama, she insisted, needed to be cutting and clear about the choice between parties that he was asking voters to make.”
In other words, get tough—get tough, do it now. And be crystal clear on where we‘re going.
Do you agree with that?
ALTER: Yes, and Axelrod responded to that by saying, well, that‘s what we‘re going to do. Now, you could say, well, why didn‘t they do it last year? And the answer was they were trying to put some points on the board, and they did. They had the most sweeping piece of social legislation since 1965.
You and I—you know, especially you—thought that they should have held out for a lot more. But they got it. They got a lot done.
So now it‘s time to say to Democrats, OK, you know, suck it up. Maybe you‘re not thrilled with this guy, but think about the alternative. Be practical.
And to do that, they have to really accentuate the choice. And so you‘re seeing them start to do that. And yes, he‘s going to criticize the culture of Washington, but most of that culture he‘ll be going after, as you saw in the weekly address, is the culture of Republican Washington, where they believe in obstruction.
SCHULTZ: Jonathan Alter, always a pleasure. Great book, by the way.
ALTER: Thanks, Ed. Your book‘s great, too.
SCHULTZ: You bet.
Coming up, “The Beckster” thinks he‘s a real comedian when it comes to going green. Well, that just puts him back on earth and back into the “Zone,” next.
SCHULTZ: And in “Psycho Talk” tonight, Glenn Beck‘s got it in the bag, I guess could you say.
The Beckster‘s two sidekicks joined him on the radio today, and, well, they were ripping on President Obama‘s Father‘s Day tips for how to be a good dad. Well, it turns out Beck had some tips of his own, and apparently he thinks destroying the environment is a good mark of a good father.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
GLENN BECK, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Real men don‘t go to a grocery store with a stupid bag like a purse. Your wife may buy one of those stupid hemp bags. And your wife can tell you --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My wife told me that.
BECK: -- you can go, because you obey your wife. You listen and obey your wife.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As long as she‘s happy, you‘re happy.
BECK: But you teach your son, I‘m doing this because I love your mother.
Yes. My wife actually got one of those stupid bags and she hid it from me. It was in the bottom of the basket, and she hid it from me on purpose because she knew I wouldn‘t approve. So, then I double-bagged every other bag that we had. I used as much plastic as possible.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good for you. You are a real man.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: You know, I find that conversation pretty interesting, because I know some farmers in the Upper Midwest that are proponents of hemp, that they want to be able to grow hemp. And, of course, hemp bags are used in a lot of other countries, and these farmers are conservative and they‘re Tea Partiers. Hmm.
A little consternation there in the little fraternity. Isn‘t it?
Glenn Beck has a history of being as anti-environmentally friendly as possible. He said he celebrated Earth Day this year by burning garbage in Styrofoam in his back yard. He mocked Earth Hour by blasting the lights in his TV studio. He left his car running outside throughout the day, one day to “do our part for global warming.” And now Beck and his henchmen have decided that going green makes you less of a man.
Guys, saying a real man—you‘re not a real man because you might use a certain number of plastic bags when you go to the grocery store, or when you‘re dealing with trash like Beck, that‘s trashy “Psycho Talk.”
Coming up, the White House flat-out denies reports that Rahm Emanuel is planning to bolt from the administration. They say it‘s ludicrous.
I‘ll get “Rapid Fire Response.”
And the oil is gushing. Meanwhile, Mr. “I‘m Devastated About This Disaster,” Tony Hayward, was out at a yacht race over the weekend. A Louisiana businessman will respond to that. The owner of AmeriPure Oyster Company was forced to shut his doors because of the spill. He‘ll give Hayward a piece of his mind in just a moment.
All that, plus immigration has taken over the Cornhusker State of Nebraska. Really?
And the Times Square bomber pleads guilty.
And Tiger makes a roaring comeback, but not quite enough.
You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. And thanks for watching tonight. Our Battleground story after his outrageous performance on Capitol Hill last week, BP had the good sense to send Tony Hayward well back across the pond. Doesn‘t change much though, does it? Despite what most Americans are hoping for, Hayward wasn‘t actually removed from duty. He is still calling the shots from a yacht race. That‘s right. Oil is still pouring into the gulf coast and BP‘s CEO is at a at a yacht race.
Fishermen, oil drillers, hotel workers and small business owners in the gulf are wondering, you know, how they‘re going to pay their bills, how they‘re going to survive and this guy, who was at the head of a company that did all this is out at a yacht race. So concerned. The BP spokesman tried to justify it by saying it‘s one of the biggest sailing events in the world. Mr. Hayward said that he wants his life back. Looks to me like he got it back. And so do the people of the gulf, they want their life back too. Unfortunately, thanks to BP, that‘s not a possibility any more. Things are going to be changed for a generation.
Patrick Fahey is the managing partner of Ameripure Oyster Company in Franklin, Louisiana. On Friday, he was forced to shut down operations and laid off 40 employees. Patrick, good to have you on the Ed show tonight. Thanks so much.
PATRICK FAHEY, AMERIPURE OYSTER COMPANY MANAGING PARTNER: Thanks.
SCHULTZ: You bet. How emotional has this been for you?
FAHEY: It was a very rough day on Friday. It was actually 48 people we laid off. We‘ve kept a handful. We‘ll keep our doors open. We‘re going to watch the situation very closely and it‘s our hope that we may be able to come back maybe in November. But we‘re not certain of that because the situation is unresolved. The oil keeps spilling into our beautiful gulf and we have another problem which is an incredible amount of fresh water that‘s been diverted into our delta by our governor in the state in an effort to keep the oil out.
Well, we don‘t dispute that but do know that fresh water kills oysters. So, we‘re going to have massive oyster mortality so that come the fall, what‘s going to be left? Even if the oil doesn‘t get into our beds, and we have a fighting chance at that, we know for certain that there will be massive oyster mortality because of the fresh water division. So, we get it either way. It doesn‘t look good.
SCHULTZ: OK. Let‘s talk about the claims process. The president moving forward getting BP to fork out $20 billion into an escrow account and a third party, Mr. Feinberg, he talked about the claims process is not going to be complicated. Here it is. I want your response.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEN FEINBERG: This process is not complicated and it‘s not going to be complicated. You don‘t need an attorney. You can certainly have one if you want. But this will be a very transparent process. Where you will walk into one of numerous local offices, strewn throughout the gulf, file a claim, file online. We‘ll be able to do it electronically if you want and we will immediately be able to process that claim. There is no reason, no reason that a local fisherman or any businessmen or individual can‘t file a claim promptly. That‘s what the president said. He wanted and that‘s what we‘re going to do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Mr. Fahey, what‘s your response to that?
FAHEY: So far, so good, Ed. We have filed a claim. It did take about three weeks to get a response. We did receive a check last week. It wasn‘t for what we filed. But we got phone calls subsequent to that receipt of check. They talked to us further. Said another one is in the mail. Granted, this was filed before Mr. Feinberg came on board, this was straight through BP by doing it electronically, talking to him on the phone. I‘m keeping my fingers crossed that they‘ll stand by their word at least in this element of the disaster.
SCHULTZ: Give us a sense of how big your business is. If you may.
FAHEY: Seventy eight million dollars a year. And we had to shut it down simply because we couldn‘t get enough products to justify our business footprint. We were accustomed to harvesting 60 or processing 60,000 to 80,000 sacks a day and we were down to 10,000 or 12,000 pounds, sometimes 20,000 pounds but we couldn‘t make any money at such limited supplies nor can we satisfy our customer base. Everybody is very frustrated. It was the right thing to do.
SCHULTZ: What are your workers going to do?
FAHEY: You know, we‘re meeting with them all again on Wednesday. We have people from the social agencies that will be down there en masse to handle each one individually. They‘re filing BP claims. They‘ve all got their numbers now. I‘ll know better on Wednesday how prompt the response to the employees has been. The Workforce Commission has done a fine job of getting a team ready to come in and do sort of an emergency triage for every one of our workers. So, we‘re hopeful that they‘ll get taken care of immediately this week. They‘re going to get their last paycheck on Wednesday and hopefully, they won‘t miss a beat. And we‘re going to start availing them of other job opportunities that exist in the area that we‘re being made aware of by the Workforce Commission.
SCHULTZ: And quickly, how long has Ameripure been in business?
FAHEY: We‘ve been in business for 15 years and in that time we became one of the biggest oyster companies in the country and it‘s a heart break.
SCHULTZ: It certainly yes. Patrick, hang in there. Good to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.
FAHEY: Thank you, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Now, let‘s get some rapid fire response from our panel on these stories tonight. The White House is shooting down a report that Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel will leave his job after the midterms. The report says, Rahm‘s fed up with the idealism of the senior advisers and the president.
A town in Nebraska is ground zero in the immigration debate this day. The people of Fremont are voting on whether to make it a crime to hire or rent property to illegal immigrants.
And Tarryl Clark, the democrat running against Michelle Bachmann in Minnesota has a new ad slamming the psycho talker for defending BP.
With us tonight, Holland Cooke, talk radio consultant, media consultant and also Karen Hanretty, a republican strategist joining us tonight, as well. All right. Lots to talk about. Holland, what do you make of Rahm Emanuel, a story that broke across the pond, saying that he‘s out. What does this mean?
HOLLAND COOKE, TALK RADIO CONSULTANT: Well, if Sarah Palin can go for the bucks, why can‘t he? Public servants really don‘t make a lot of money. They‘re there because they want to serve, but like the Palins, there are Emanuel children, Rahm is only 50 years old. In that “60 Minutes” interview awhile back, he talked about not being able to sleep calmly. There is a burnout that every administration gets to about two years in. The two-year itch. And the “a” team is always the gang that was there for first two years of the first administration. So if this comes to pass, it will be a familiar pattern.
SCHULTZ: Karen Hanretty is, there trouble inside the White House, or is this all about the money and the visibility?
KAREN HANRETTY, GOP STRATEGIST: I don‘t know. If it‘s about the money, I have no problem with that. Look, two years is a long time to be a chief of staff. And when eventual a family and I think that Rahm Emanuel said from the beginning, he probably had about a two-year shelf life. So you know, I personally, who cares if Rahm Emanuel is there. Rahm Emanuel is not propping up the president and he‘s not.
SCHULTZ: Actually, I have to tell that you there‘s a lot of liberals in this country that think that this guy is to much of a political pragmatist and he has taken a good liberal president and watered him down pretty much to the point where he‘s not as effective as he should be.
HANRETTY: Well, let me tell you something. If Obama gets a president who takes them even further left, bring it on for the 2012 election. I think we‘ll do even better than I think we‘re going do now.
SCHULTZ: I agree. Bring it on for universal health care, absolutely.
COOKE: And Ed, as Karen said, who cares. You do talk radio every day. I listen to talk radio for a living. I bet if you went through the checkout line at Wal-Mart and asked ten people who Rahm Emanuel is, two or three might now.
HANRETTY: That‘s right.
SCHULTZ: But the base knows who he is. And I think you know, we‘re seeing now, the president starting to turn and identify the republicans as the obstructionists, I think trying to warm back up to the base before the midterms. Let‘s go to—go ahead.
HANRETTY: OK. Well, let me just say one thing about the base. The base of the Democratic Party is upset about Rahm Emanuel. They should keep in mind, he was a mastermind between the 2006 takeover of the democrats majority in Congress. And he‘s the one who went out there and recruited a lot of pro-life conservative democrats who were able to win in districts that they would not have otherwise been able to win in. So you know, I understand they tend not to like having a pragmatist around. And again, I can take or leave Rahm Emanuel but he‘s the one who gave your base a majority.
SCHULTZ: I think the guy you head of the White House probably had a little bit to do with that too and the frustration of the country.
HANRETTY: He had a very different strategy.
SCHULTZ: A town in Nebraska is now ground zero when it comes to immigration reform. They‘re actually voting to make it a crime when it comes to giving, renting property to illegal immigrants. Now, this is in the middle of the country. Holland Cooke, how hot of a story is this?
COOKE: I speak to you tonight, Ed, from Rhode Island, a culturally little diverse state with a proud immigrant tradition and dark blue politics and people here are shook about immigration. Just this afternoon, on talk radio in Providence, I heard a very thoughtful caller say, we need a law like that Arizona law here. And I‘ve heard on your radio show how this topic really lights up the phones. People seem to get it. And they are very frustrated that the Federal government has not come to terms with this, and that states have to, in their view, take control.
SCHULTZ: Karen what, do you think?
HANRETTY: It is astounding to me that here we go, one more time, President Obama is going to dig in his heels not having learned the lessons of the last administration that wanted to move forward with this two-pronged approach. The American people have I think zero confidence that the government is capable of getting anything right, right now. So when you go out there with a message, when President Obama or democrats or whomever goes out with the messages saying, well, listen, we‘ll do border enforcement but we‘re also going to, you know, move these immigrants on a path to legalization, I think you lose the majority of the country that says look, just problem to us you can get one thing right at a time. Fix the border problem. Then we‘ll talk about what to do with people who are here.
SCHULTZ: Karen, you‘ve got be fair to this story. The Obama administration has put more border security, more resources than the last administration ever did. And we all know that there is a tremendous thirst by the conservatives for cheap labor. And whereas John McCain stood up on the senate floor repeatedly and talked about how it‘s Obama‘s fault. Where in the hell has he been for the last 30 years in the Congress. I mean, the president—now you‘ve got Jon Kyl standing up at a town hall meeting saying that the president told him that he wasn‘t going to secure the borders until he got immigration reform. I mean, the republicans still lie about this and you know they do.
Once again, we‘re out of time. Great to have you with us. Holland Cooke and Karen Hanretty with us tonight here on rapid fire.
HANRETTY: Thanks Ed.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, one of America‘s main problems is the leadership in Maine. The two republican senators from the state are blocking the jobs bill and it‘s time to call them out. I‘m not stopping at all on this fight. These Americans need to be heard. And they‘re going to be heard on this show. That‘s coming up in The Playbook. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And it‘s not too late to let us know what you think. Tonight‘s text survey question is, do you think the republicans have the guts to force Congress and Joe Barton to step down from the Energy Committee? Text a for yes, text b for no to 622639. We got the results coming up.
SCHULTZ: And in my Playbook tonight, Republican Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine are under pressure to break ranks with their party and do the right thing. Help pass a jobs bill that would extend unemployment benefits. That‘s just one provision of the jobs bill. Last week, republicans blocked the bill, complaining it would add to the deficit. Now Snowe and Collins are being targeted in a new commercial.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER: It‘s pretty simple. The more jobs we create now, the less federal debt they‘ll have to carry later because jobs not only put food on the table, they put revenue in the treasury. And money in the marketplace. More jobs equal less debt. Even our kids can understand that. Tell Senators Snowe and Collins to pass the jobs bill now, not just for us but for our children.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: OK. You get the idea.
Joining me now is Blaine Rummel, Assistant Director of the Legislation for AFSCME, the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees. Mr. Rummel, is this money well spent in your opinion? Why is AFSCME spending money on this issue?
BLAINE RUMMEL, AFSCME ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Well, it‘s good to be with you, Ed. Yes, this is money well spent. I don‘t need to tell that you that this economy is at a very—is at a precipice right now. We only created 40,000 private sector jobs last month. Unemployment claims were up last week. This economy at this point could go either way. And economists have said that one of the best ways to keep the economy growing and growing faster is investment in public services, the state aid which this ad is all about. Not only that, but it‘s the way to keep the debt down in the long-term. And so if this helps.
SCHULTZ: And is it true that half of your employees, your members would be affected by this?
RUMMEL: No, not necessarily. The, what, economists have said, some economists have said is that we‘re looking at possibly 900,000 job losses in the public and private sector over the next two years.
RUMMEL: And so, some of that would be public employees, a lot of the it would be private employees and what‘s going to happen though is if this bill does not pass, 30 state legislatures including Maine are going to have to go back and reopen their budgets and figure out where to cut. You‘re talking about special sessions. Talk about a waste of taxpayer dollars and driven up the deficit in that way.
SCHULTZ: What do you say about the republicans when they say though, just add to the deficit, there‘s no way to pay for it.
RUMMEL: Well, I think the ad says it best. The way to keep the deficits under control in the long-term is to protect jobs now. What happens if 900,000 people lose their jobs, Ed? You‘re going to have decreased tax revenue, you‘re going to have an increased reliance on public services. That‘s going to make the deficit explode. So to republicans and to some conservative democrats who say that their concern is the deficit, the answer is to pass this is jobs bill now, make sure our deficit doesn‘t explode, make sure money is still going into the treasury and making sure that people stay off public assistance.
SCHULTZ: So are you saying also tonight politically that the democrats are doing what you want them to do? It‘s the republicans in the senate, they are the obstructers in all of this?
RUMMEL: Well, certainly the democratic leadership is strongly supportive of this bill. Senator Reid wants to try to move it again. Speaker Pelosi strongly supports this fiscal relief for states as well as unemployment benefits. That‘s the other piece of this. Remember that this bill also keeps the lifeline going for Americans who have lost their jobs. If this bill doesn‘t go through, you‘re going to see 250,000 Americans a week losing their lifeline. It is the republican leadership.
SCHULTZ: Yes, it‘s interesting that your commercial has you asking people to convince senators instead of you politically targeting them. I mean, you‘re looking for the good of the people. And I appreciate that. Good to have you with us, Mr. Rummel. I appreciate you with us tonight.
RUMMEL: Thank you Ed. Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Some final pages in my Playbook. The so-called Times Square bomber pleaded guilty to a ten-count indictment for trying to set off three separate bombs in an SUV on May 1st. The Justice Department says, Shahzad‘s sudden decision was made on his own without any kind of plea agreement. Shahzad also said, unless the United States stops attacking Muslim lands, they will be attacking the United States. The charges carry a life sentence in prison and sentencing is scheduled for the month of October.
Smokers in New York are getting smoked. Cigarette taxes in the state are going to go up by about $1.60 a pack, the highest in the country. Governor Paterson‘s proposal will be included in an emergency budget bill to help close a $9 billion budget gap. A pack will cost over $10. That‘s right, over $10. Is that 50 cents a siggy? That‘s pretty hefty.
To sports, Tiger Woods didn‘t win the u.s. Open Gulf Tournament but he came close. I told you last week, I expected to be watching Tiger compete for his 15th major championship on Sunday. And I was right. Even with all that he has been through, he‘s still one of the best golfers in the world. And he‘s just on the way back. Woods finished fourth and congratulations to the winner 30-year-old Irishman Graeme McDowell. It‘s the first time a European has won the u.s. open in 40 years.
And finally from one championship to another, the 2010 Beer Pong Championships is in the books. Two guys from Sacramento who call themselves drinking, smoking straight west coasting took home $25,000 for winning the tournament. But I might have to protest this win. The game started as a college drinking game, but they played with water in the cups. Not beer. Is that real?
Coming up, if you had to make a decision on either taxing millionaires or cutting services for seniors and disabled Americans, it would probably be a no-brainer but not for a heartless Republican Governor Chris Christie from New Jersey. I‘ll explain all of that, next. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And finally tonight, I‘ll ask the question, whose side are you on? The battle between the haves and the have nots, well, it‘s raging in the state of New Jersey, and as usual, republicans are voting for the rich folks. Today, New Jersey democrats failed to override Republican Governor Chris Christie‘s veto of a bill to raise taxes for millionaires. All 33 republicans voted against the override. The bill would also have used the tax revenue to restore property tax rebates for seniors and the disabled. Governor Christie eliminated those to balance the state budget. This is really Bush 2.0 with republicans consistently coming down on the side of the very wealthy in that state. At the expense basically of everybody else.
Joining me now is Democratic Congressman Frank Pallone of New Jersey. Congressman, good to have you with us. I want to just throw this graphic up quickly here. In the budget for Governor Christie in 2011, retired couple on $40,000 a year fixed income would see an increase of over $1300 in taxes. If you make over $1.2 million in New Jersey, you‘re going to get a tax cut of almost $12,000. How can this not just turn every seat in that state to the democrats? I mean, it‘s very clear where the priorities are. What do you think?
REP. FRANK PALLONE (D), NEW JERSEY: Well, it just makes no sense because basically it violates shared sacrifice. In other words, we know that there have to be cuts in the state budget but don‘t, you know, put all the burden on seniors or the disabled or the middle class. And give the millionaires a tax break. Remember, the millionaires paid this tax last year. So, they‘re actually getting a tax cut. Meanwhile, the seniors and the disabled have to pay more. It‘s just totally unfair. There‘s no shared sacrifice.
SCHULTZ: So, what do you say to your constituents when they‘re facing this on the home front?
PALLONE: Well, I simply say that they should, you know, contact the governor, his office and complain about it. I mean it‘s still not too late. The budget I think has to be adopted by July 1st. The governor can still change his mind and go along with this and say look, we‘ll give some relief to seniors and the disabled. And we‘ll make the millionaires pay the same taxes they did last year.
SCHULTZ: But doesn‘t this mirror exactly what the republicans are doing in Washington?
PALLONE: Oh, absolutely. I mean, the bottom line is that they‘re not looking out for the concerns of the middle class. I mean, there‘s so many other examples basically by pushing more and more of the burden on the property tax, in other words, there are a lot of cuts in state aid that will mean property taxes will go up for middle class people all over the state. It‘s not just the seniors and the disabled. There‘s also a 20 percent cut in the earned income tax credit for low income, New Jerseyans in the governor‘s budget. So, everybody is basically sharing in this sacrifice except for millionaires. It‘s simply not fair.
SCHULTZ: That‘s who they are. Congressman, good to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.
PALLONE: Thank you, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Tonight, on our tech survey, I asked, do you think the republicans have the guts to force Congressman Joe Barton to step down from the Energy Committee? Seven percent of you said yes, 93 percent of you said no.
That‘s the Ed Show. I‘m Ed Schultz. For more information on the Ed Show, go to ed.msnbc.com or check at our radio website at wegoted.com.
HARDBALL with Chris Matthews. Chris Matthews starts right now, right here on the place for politics, MSNBC. We‘ll see you tomorrow night.
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