updated 10/22/2010 9:51:52 AM ET 2010-10-22T13:51:52

Guests: Harry Reid, Jonathan Alter, Jon Ralston, Heidi Harris, Joan Walsh,

Michael Medved, Roy Sekoff, Danny Thompson

ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC ANCHOR:  Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW tonight.

We are deep in the heart of Harry Reid country tonight, coming to you live from Henderson, Nevada. 

These stories are hitting “My Hot Buttons” at this hour. 

You‘ll never guess who I bumped into the airport today.  I just landed in Vegas, and there she is, “Psycho Talker” Sharron Angle.  I asked her to describe Harry Reid in one word and her answer, well, it was a dandy. 

I sat down with an exclusive interview with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid today, and I asked him to respond.  That‘s coming up in just a moment. 

President Obama is pulling his weight and firing up the base all over the country.  Democrats are surging after his stops in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Colorado.  This man knows how to close the deal for Democrats. 

And Christine O‘Donnell, I‘ll tell you what, she is becoming her own full-blown reality show.  You will not believe her latest gaffe.  This one is definitely one for the archives. 

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sat down with me today following an event here in Nevada at the AFL-CIO Nevada State Headquarters. 

Here it is. 

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SCHULTZ:  Senator Reid, welcome to THE ED SHOW.  Good to have you with us tonight. 

SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV), MAJORITY LEADER:  Thanks, Ed, for allowing me to be on. 

SCHULTZ:  You bet.  Thank you for your time. 

A funny thing.  I come to Las Vegas, Nevada, just hours ago, I land, and I‘m at the airport, there she is, standing at baggage claim, Sharron Angle.  So I took the liberty to go up and ask her—I said, “I‘m going to interview your competition today.”  I said, “If you had to describe Senator Reid, give us a word.”  And she said, “Man up.”

And I said, “Well, what hasn‘t Senator Reid manned up on?”  And she said, “Well, the economy and Social Security.” 

I want to give you a chance to describe her. 

REID:  People in Nevada know me from the street to the ring to the Senate chambers.  I‘ve never had to prove my manhood to anyone.  And for this woman who is—you were very fortunate to catch her, you know.  She doesn‘t do interviews.  I mean, you had to catch her on this, on the run, because she doesn‘t do interviews. 

She spends most of her time in her bunker.  I don‘t know if it‘s Cheney‘s bunker, but it‘s some kind of a bunker someplace.  And I would be in that bunker myself if I said that I wanted to phase out Medicare, get rid of Social Security, do away with the Department of Energy, the Department of Education. 

SCHULTZ:  She‘s radical. 

REID:  She is.  Privatize the Veterans Administration.  These are longstanding views. 

She is extreme, she‘s dangerous, and embarrassing to the state of Nevada. 

SCHULTZ:  Those terms—I just heard you speak to the AFL-CIO here in Las Vegas.  And you used those three words to describe her.  How do you think that‘s going to be received by voters?  I mean, that‘s really laying it on the line. 

REID:  You know, Ed, these are three kind gentle words people yell in audiences that I attend when I describe what she‘s done.  For example, she says if a 12-year-old girl is impregnated by her father, you should make lemonade out of lemons. 

And people yell from the audience a lot worse than being extreme, dangerous, and embarrassing.  Those are just some of the words they yell. 

SCHULTZ:  So you think the Nevada voters are going to figure this out?  I mean, you‘re neck and neck.  They‘ve spent $40 million trying to defeat the most powerful man in the United States Senate.  One of the AFL-CIO officials here told me that she‘s certifiable, you know? 

Are you surprised you‘re in this position? 

REID:  I‘m comfortable where I am today in this election.  We have been polling for quite a few days.  We are fine where we are. 

Why is the race close?  That‘s the question that people ask, and I will give you that answer before you ask the question. 

Nevada, for 20 years, was at the top of the economic food chain.  If you wanted a good job, come to Nevada.  If you wanted to invest in real estate, no place better in America than Nevada.  If you wanted to get a good job, come to Nevada. 

Well, when Wall Street collapsed, which, by the way, she said it was caused because of too much regulation—we had farther to fall than any other state. 

SCHULTZ:  The state has dropped farther than any other state? 

REID:  Oh yes, because we were at the top and we‘ve fallen very hard.  So people have been hurting, and I understand that, and it doesn‘t give them comfort or solace for me to tell them, you know, but for me we‘d be in a worldwide depression.  They want to know what I‘ve done for them, and that‘s why it‘s important for me, any chance I get, to say that my number one job is to create jobs.  And she says that it‘s not her job to create jobs. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you think this kind of rhetoric going back and forth is going to help the early voting?  I mean, I‘ve read that upwards—the majority of people in this state do early voting.  Does that play to your favor? 

REID:  The one thing that we have a distinct advantage without any qualification is our get-out-the-vote program.  Never in the history of the country, except in a presidential election, have you had a get-out-of-the-vote program on a state basis like we have. 

We‘ve been working on this for a long time.  And it came about as a result of our, for the first time in the history the country, having the Democratic Caucus here for the presidential selection process. 

SCHULTZ:  Speaking of getting out the vote, she was at a high school here in Clark County and made the comment to Latino students that they looked—some of them looked Asian.  And I‘m told by residents here, a number of them, that this has really ignited the passion amongst the Hispanics in this area. 

Is this a turning point?  Do you view this as maybe the golden goose that could turn this? 

REID:  Ed, the Hispanic population already turned against her pretty hard.  The fire was burning.  But what she‘s done the last few day, she‘s poured gasoline on this fire. 

We have a situation where she‘s insulted these kids.  They were Hispanic kids at a Hispanic organization.  Of course they were Hispanic.  That‘s why they were there. 

And she not only said that, she also insulted them by saying, her, Sharron Angle, when she was is the state legislature, people said she looked Asian.  And if that weren‘t bad enough, then, that same evening, we discover that one of these front groups is out running ads, trying to run ads—they already have it produced—saying, Hispanic, don‘t vote.  Just don‘t vote.  We know that you‘re not going to vote for Angle, but don‘t vote for Reid. 

SCHULTZ:  How do you feel about that? 

REID:  It‘s hard for me to comprehend anything so un-American, so unpatriotic, as telling people not to vote.  That‘s why people have looked at America as the bulwark of freedom.  We get to vote. 

You know, we‘ve had in years past with some of the situation we‘ve had based on racial politics, especially in the South, we had trouble getting African-American to vote.  Now for her to come back and try to bring this up again? 

SCHULTZ:  So you absolutely need the Hispanic vote to win this election? 

REID:  I absolutely need the people of the state of Nevada, Democrats, Republicans, Independents, black, white, Asian, African-American—I guess I named—my point—my point is this: she is not part of the Republican Party that is our fathers‘ Republican Party.  She‘s trying to create a Republican Party that Republicans can‘t recognize. 

That‘s why I, Harry Reid, in Nevada, have the endorsement of basically every Republican leader in the state of Nevada—have endorsed me.  That doesn‘t mean they‘re not good Republicans.

That doesn‘t mean they‘re not good Republicans.  It means they can‘t put up with this type of Republicanism she has. 

SCHULTZ:  That extremism that you talk about, getting rid of the Department of Education, she‘s on record saying that she wants to get rid of the Department of Energy. 

REID:  Oh, yes. 

SCHULTZ:  Now, the Nevada Testing Center, under the Department of Energy, how many jobs would that be to Nevada? 

REID:  At one time we had 11,000 jobs all under the auspices of the Department of Energy. 

SCHULTZ:  So that would eliminate --  

REID:  Oh, yes. 

SCHULTZ:  -- thousands of jobs in this state if they were to follow her blueprint? 

REID:  And everyone knows that knows me, knows how hard I‘m working to diversify the economy and reestablish the 11,000 jobs we‘ve had up there --  

SCHULTZ:  Do you stand by the stimulus package?  Was that the right thing to do? 

REID:  Oh, sure.  We had to do that to stop worldwide depression. 

But do we need to do more?  Of course.  What we‘ve done is not enough. 

But let me just mention a couple of things quickly for your audience. 

As we speak, there‘s almost $2 billion worth of projects with renewable energy in Nevada as a result of that legislation.  When you flew into McCarran Field today, you may not have noticed it, but there‘s a huge multibillion-dollar project going on there that is part of the economic recovery package. 

When you drive down the strip today, you‘ll see all those bright lights.  I saved at one place Harrah‘s, as a result of the language I put in that bill, 31,000 jobs at Harrah‘s alone. 

SCHULTZ:  Do you think Nevada voters get that? 

REID:  Well, I think Nevada voters have gotten it.  As I said, I‘m comfortable where I am today.  I just want to make sure for the next 11 days, or whatever it is, that I maintain my position today. 

Every day that goes by, she says more extreme, dangerous, embarrassing things.  And it‘s not good for the state of Nevada. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCHULTZ:  She has attacked your character, Senator, saying that you have hang around with supermodels, or where you live in Washington. 

REID:  Ed, do you know who the supermodel was that they phonied up that picture?  Do you know who the supermodel was?  The first lady of the United States.  That‘s who it was. 

We were here up at Red Rock.  We were dancing with some kids.  And I‘m not much of a dancer, believe me. 

SCHULTZ:  So has she lied about you. 

REID:  Oh, has she lied about me. 

SCHULTZ:  Sharron Angle has lied about Harry Reid. 

REID:  And fact-checkers prove it.  Her anti-immigrant ads that she‘s run are baseless without any foundation.  The things she said about my family, without any truth and veracity. 

And I was told this.  I couldn‘t believe this happened.  One of the Republican leaders‘ wives said, “Harry, watch it.  The last month she‘s going to be vicious.”  And she has been. 

SCHULTZ:  You grew up in a shack.  No plumbing, right?

REID:  Well, it was—

SCHULTZ:  And now she‘s saying that you‘re a rich guy.  How do you feel about that?

REID:  As I—Ed, I live in Searchlight, Nevada.  I have a home in Searchlight, Nevada.  I stay in Washington, D.C., in a one-bedroom apartment, and my penthouse is on the second floor.  How do you like that, a penthouse on the second floor?

SCHULTZ:  So she‘s tried to paint this picture that you‘re not the Harry Reid that left years ago, and you say that you are.

REID:  Have her visit my home in Searchlight.  I‘m proud of my home in Searchlight.  Come by.

Here‘s my standing offer—everyone knows this.  If my shutters are up, come on by.

SCHULTZ:  Is President Obama going to make a difference with Nevada voters?  You‘re not running from him.  You‘re not running from health care, you‘re not running from the stimulus package.  I mean, you‘re laying it all on the line.

Is President Obama going to help you?

REID:  Oh, sure.

SCHULTZ:  With voters? 

REID:  Yes, of course.  I want the president to feel good about Nevada.  He‘s the president of the United States. 

He has helped the state of Nevada, and I want him to continue to help the state of Nevada.  And also, I‘m not sure it‘s been noted any place on national TV, but the first lady‘s coming for me also. 

SCHULTZ:  Yes.

Senator, good luck to you. 

REID:  Thank you very much. 

SCHULTZ:  Good to have you with us on THE ED SHOW.

(END VIDEOTAPE) 

SCHULTZ:  Now that you‘ve seen that interview, I want to know what you think in our telephone survey.  The number to dial tonight is 1-877-ED-MSNBC. 

Who do you think is more qualified to be a Senator, Harry Reid or Sharron Angle?  Press the number 1 for Harry Reid.  Press the number 2 for Sharron Angle.  We‘ll bring you the results later on in the show. 

Jonathan Alter sounds off on the president‘s push next. 

And a quick programming note.  I will be reporting here on election night from Nevada to cover what we think is the biggest race in this country.  The number one senator in the United States, Harry Reid, on the ropes up against Sharron Angle.

Our coverage will be on election night, November 1st and November 2nd, here from Nevada. 

Coming up, I can‘t tell the difference between Christine O‘Donnell‘s character on “Saturday Night Live” and the real thing.  She just got stumped again.  And you need to see it to believe it. 

President Obama has lit the base on fire, and he‘s working his tail off down the stretch.  And I think he deserves a lot of credit.  He could be the difference.  Democrats in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Colorado, they are surging. 

And I‘ll tell you how Sarah Palin might be linked to the Hollywood bondage club that the RNC partied at. 

You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC, right from the outskirts of Sin City.  Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW and thanks for watching tonight. 

We‘re coming to you live from Nevada. 

President Obama will be here this weekend to fire up the base and try to get more support for Harry Reid.  The president has not lost his campaign mojo, that‘s for sure.  He‘s working awfully hard, and it is starting to pay off.  In three key states, the president, basically, I think, has been the game-changer. 

In Pennsylvania, Joe Sestak was considered dead in the water.  Now he‘s in a dead heat after the president campaigned for him in Philadelphia at a rally that drew 18,000 people. 

In Wisconsin, Russ Feingold is surging.  He was losing by double digits before the president came to town in Madison, Wisconsin, and rallied a crowd of some 26,000 people. 

And in Colorado, Michael Bennet, not thought to have a chance, he is benefiting from a campaign event with first lady Michelle Obama last week, especially as the race shifts to the women‘s issues. 

Now, the president and the first lady deserve, I think, a lot of credit here.  They‘re doing everything they can to turn out the base and hold the majority for the Democrats. 

Republicans, I don‘t think they ought to be popping their champagne bottles as of yet.  There‘s a long way to go. 

Jonathan Alter joins us, national affairs columnist for “Newsweek,” and, of course, MSNBC political analyst. 

JONATHAN ALTER, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST:  Hi, Ed. 

SCHULTZ:  Well the numbers tell—Jonathan, the numbers tell the truth.  Or are we just imagining things here?  Is the president having an effect in these key Senate races?  What do you think? 

ALTER:  Well, he is right now, but we don‘t know what‘s going to happen.  I mean, the Democrats could easily lose any one of those races and easily lose control of the Senate. 

The House is in real jeopardy.  So, yes, there are some signs that the base is starting to rally. 

This is a president who is a closer.  He likes to hit that jump shot at the buzzer.  But they got started kind of late in—you know, in mobilizing the base. 

But having said that, like, I‘m kind of sick of me or anybody else trying to find out what Obama did wrong, you know, on this or on any of the issues.  We‘re way past that. 

We‘re staring in the face of a right-wing takeover of one of the branches of our government.  So it‘s all hands on deck.  And anybody who voted in the last election has to start to recognize that this election is vitally important.  And to say that they‘re upset with Obama for this or that if they‘re a Democrat is just completely irrelevant at this point. 

SCHULTZ:  Well, I think that kind of conversation left the building about maybe a month ago, maybe even longer than that. 

ALTER:  Yes. 

(CROSSTALK)

SCHULTZ:  I mean, I think that we have seen a real surge by these Democrats.

Take a look at Pennsylvania.  Joe Sestak, 60 days ago, was down by double digits.  And now it‘s within the statistical error. 

Also, you‘ve got Wisconsin, St. Norbert College and Wisconsin Public Radio, they are active in polling.  There is Russ Feingold.  He has surged within striking distance. 

And also, in Colorado, Michael Bennet, who went through a real tough primary with Andrew Romanoff—and many of the voices out of the Romanoff camp were saying we‘re not going to support Bennet.  But now when you see how extreme Ken Buck is, the numbers are changing.  Plus the visits by the Obamas. 

I mean, I think the Obama family has got tremendous likability. 

ALTER:  Yes, definitely.

SCHULTZ:  People like to vote for people that they like. 

ALTER:  Absolutely. 

SCHULTZ:  And I think that he is terrific on the campaign trail. 

ALTER:  No question about it.  And remember, his popularity, which has actually ticked up to about 47 percent, is substantially higher than either Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton‘s were at comparable times in their presidency.  I think that Reagan was down at 42 percent. 

So the reports of Barack Obama‘s political demise are greatly exaggerated.  And he is—you know he‘s just terrific on the stump, but the fact remains, once again, Ed, it is not about him. 

It‘s about the troops.  It‘s about the base getting out there and mobilizing and organizing, and making those calls, because he can make all the nice speeches in the world, but he‘s not going to bring people to the polls.  It‘s the 13 million folks who contributed to his campaign in 2008 who need to mobilize themselves, really, and take a good, hard look at themselves and ask, have they done enough to prevent a right-wing takeover? 

SCHULTZ:  And, of course, the $64 question this weekend is, will he put Harry Reid over the top?  I mean, you say it‘s not about President Obama, but I say that President Obama is still putting forth the agenda—

ALTER:  Yes. 

SCHULTZ:  -- and people know what he wants to accomplish.  And if he has Democratic senators with him, it‘s going to be obviously a heck of a lot easier. 

ALTER:  All I‘m saying is Obama is necessary but not sufficient.  He needs to be—you know, there need to be people behind him in the parade. 

SCHULTZ:  Jonathan Alter, always a pleasure.  Good to have you with us. 

ALTER:  Thanks, Ed. 

SCHULTZ:  Coming up, Wisconsin‘s Senate hopeful, Ron Johnson, this guy is a real cheese head.  He‘s proud to say that he has zero plans for anything.  He‘s just, I guess, running for just the hell of it—I guess. 

Well, that‘s enough to put him in “The Zone,” and that‘s next. 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  And in “Psycho Talk” tonight, oh, we‘ve got a new fraternal member.  Wisconsin Republican Senate candidate Ron Johnson, this guy‘s a dandy.  He‘s trying to take down three-term Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, but with less than two weeks to go before the election, Ron‘s campaign platform is painfully short on the details. 

His complete lack of a jobs plan cost him the endorsement of “The Green Bay Press Gazette.”  And yesterday he was completely clueless when responding to a question on what to do about homeless veterans. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RON JOHNSON ®, WISCONSIN SENATE CANDIDATE:  Specifically, I can‘t really—I haven‘t been there.  I don‘t have all of the details. 

And one thing I will point out, I don‘t believe this election really is about details.  It just isn‘t.

I mean, as I‘ve gone through the state of Wisconsin, I view this pretty much as a job interview.  What my approach has been throughout this process is just convey to people who I am.  You know, what my background is. 

Let people know, first of all, what my philosophy is on particular issue.  I think just in terms of—I‘ll have to get there.  I‘ll have to actually start performing the job. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ:  It‘s another rich guy that doesn‘t care about details. 

Buddy, you think you can just magically figure out specific policies once you‘re in office?  We already had a guy in the White House that tried do that.

Ron Johnson is a perfect fit for the party of no ideas.  For him to say homeless veterans, well they‘re just details that aren‘t relevant to this election is extremely disrespectful “Psycho Talk.”  

Coming up, 12 days to go, and the Tea Partier Sharron Angle is fighting Harry Reid tooth and nail.  Here‘s the reason why—it‘s the money. 

I‘ll tell you what, she has got a ton of it, and she is using it to personally attack Harry Reid with psycho commercials. 

Top political reporter in Nevada Jon Ralston joins us.  A fan of Sharron Angle, Heidi Harris, we‘ll only give her three seconds tonight.

They join me in “The Battleground” story. 

And Christine O‘Donnell is coming close to Palin‘s level of insanity. 

She‘s so delusional, she thinks she won the debate the other night. 

Roy Sekoff is going to get all over that from “The Huffington Post.” 

He‘ll sound off.

Plus, Michael Steele is complaining about debt.  He actually said it with a straight face, with all of the debt they have? 

You‘re watching THE ED SHOW, live from Nevada, in Harry Reid‘s back yard. 

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.  The “Battleground” story tonight, the Senate showdown here in Nevada.  The latest poll from the Las Vegas review journal shows Sharron Angle two points ahead of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, 47 percent to 45 percent.  That‘s within the margin of error.  But it‘s a change from the summer number when Reid had the lead.  I mean I just can‘t even believe that this is happening after the absolute crazy stuff and the frightening things that Sharron Angle has been saying on the campaign trail.  Here it is. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SHARRON ANGLE ®, NEVADA SENATE CANDIDATE:  There‘s nothing wrong with our health care system.  We need to phase Medicare and Social Security out in favor of something privatize. 

You can make more money on unemployment than you can going down and getting one of those jobs that is an honest job.  

You know, I don‘t know that all of you are Latino.  Some of you look a little more Asian to me. 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ:  Quite a collection, huh?  But the Tea Partiers are on a crusade to elect Sharron Angle.  She‘s raised an obscene number, $14 million in the last fund-raising quarter, which she‘s using to blanket the airwaves here in the state of Nevada with dishonest campaign commercials.  That claims that Harry Reid is living it up with super models in Washington and supports giving Viagra to sex offenders.  I sat down for an exclusive interview with the Senate majority leader earlier today.  He told me he thinks Sharron Angle‘s crazy talk will backfire on her.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REID:  She is extreme.  She‘s dangerous.  And embarrassing to the State of Nevada.  She‘s trying to create a Republican Party that Republicans can‘t recognize.  That‘s why I, Harry Reid in Nevada, have the endorsement of basically every republican leader in the State of Nevada.  And endorse me.  

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Yes.  

REID:  That doesn‘t mean they‘re not good Republicans.  It means they can‘t put up with this type of republicanism she has.  

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ:  Joining me now is Jon Ralston, Nevada political analyst and also Heidi Harris, radio talk show host here in Las Vegas.  The—interviewing Senator Reid today, you get a sense that he can‘t believe he‘s in this position.  He cannot believe that there is a candidate and we showed the tape just there about how many wacky things somebody can say or how many extreme positions someone can have, Jon, and be this close and statistically being ahead.  What‘s happening out here?

JON RALSTON, NEVADA POLITICAL ANALYST:  Well, I think he does show that attitude, Ed, and I think that‘s what he believes and that‘s how he came across in this debate when Sharron Angle, he couldn‘t believe he had to be there with her.  People here really despise him.  There‘s a significant portion of. 

SCHULTZ:  Why?

RALSTON:  Well, for a variety of reasons.  He‘s the face of the democratic agenda to Nevadans.  People think he‘s out of touch.  He‘s been around for 40 years, and guess what, you know this, he is not that charismatic.  He can‘t fix it that way.  

SCHULTZ:  OK, but the stimulus package that he signatured created jobs right down the street here.  He told the AFL-CIO today that 31,000 jobs were saved and created in this market because of that.  What‘s the hate?

RALSTON:  Stimulus package did save those jobs at Harris and elsewhere, he‘s helped bring jobs here Ed, but if you look at facts that are out there on the unemployment rate, it‘s the highest in the country where the foreclosure capital of the world.  When you‘re trying to make the case that things could had been worse with the stimulus, which a lot of economists believe by the way, it‘s a tough case to make to people here.  

Heidi, the number one industry here in this state is tourism.  When the rest of the country has a recession, a downturn, obviously it makes sense that this state‘s going to pay a price. 

HEIDI HARRIS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  No question.  

SCHULTZ:  What‘s that got to do with Harry Reid?

HARRIS:  Well, Harry Reid should have defended it the first time, President Obama made a comment about Las Vegas.  I understand the context in which he said it but Harry Reid wouldn‘t say anything.  

SCHULTZ:  But if it‘s about jobs and you‘re number one industry in the state is tourism, how can that hang on the head of Harry Reid.  

HARRIS:  Well, because it goes back to what kind of policies he‘s pushing.  When you got Casinos and concern about who they‘re going to hire based on what Washington is going to do next.  We know, there are big companies concerns about Obama-care.  Harry Reid is the face of Obama-care and that is the biggest issue for people.  They don‘t have a job at this point.  They don‘t want green jobs, they want green-felt jobs back.  And Harry keeps talking about solar panels and windmills and these guys are banging nails and these unions don‘t have jobs and that‘s all they care about. 

SCHULTZ:  OK.  But if tourism was the number one attraction in other states, they would had been hit just as hard.  I mean this is what—what the dichotomy of the state is.  Now as far as the foreclosure thing is concerned, it‘s my understanding, Jon that this state deregulated quite a bit at the—at the state level when it came to banking.  No loan was a bad loan back in the late ‘90s here and there were people that were doing, you know, adjustable loans, interest-only, they were people putting people that are making $16 to $18 an hour in $300,000 homes.  I mean the market was going crazy because there was no regulation.  How is that Harry Reid‘s fault?

RALSTON:  Well, it‘s not of course and this was the ultimate boomtown and it was go, go, go, and people made a fortune here in the ‘80s and in the ‘90s.  In fact, Hairy Reid investing in real estate here before he ever got to Washington is how he got rich because he invested in land.  And so of course that‘s not his fault.  

SCHULTZ:  That was the right thing do.  

RALSON:  That was funny about Republicans criticizing people for getting rich but that‘s a different program.  The bottom line here is the state did have lax regulation of the mortgage industry in this state.  Now how much that contributed to this crisis is a different issue, but of course Harry Reid has to wear all of this.  He‘s the most third most.

SCHULTZ:  Powerful issues though.  

RALSTON:  But that‘s not what people are listening to.  They hear Heidi and others say Obama-care, they talk about the stimulus, they talk about the unemployment rate.  People are hurting in this state.  They don‘t want to hear details of jobs that might have been saved.  

SCHULTZ:  So, Sharron Angle says it‘s not her position to get jobs, how do you defend that?  But Harry Reid‘s position.  

HARRIS:  It‘s the Senate‘s job to put in policies that encourage businesses to take chances, buy equipment and hire people.  Senators are not going to hire people and stimulus doesn‘t hire people.  

SCHULTZ:  And the Obama administration hasn‘t done that?

HARRIS:  No.  

SCHULTZ:  Heidi, they put more on the table for small business than any administration in the last 30 years.  

HARRIS:  Well, -- small business owners who call my show who say they can‘t afford to hire people because they don‘t know what‘s going to happen next. 

SCHULTZ:  Because they‘ve been tight with the dollar.  They‘ve had to fight for the small business lending that just passed just a few weeks ago.  The Republicans said no to that all along.  

HARRIS:  They don‘t know what to expect and what‘s interesting about Sharron Angle‘s campaign is she‘s turning all of this class warfare that the Democrats usually used against the Republicans against Harry Reid.  People don‘t have jobs, they can‘t barely pay their bills, he‘s living in the Ritz-Carlton and she‘s smart.  

SCHULTZ:  He told me today, he‘s living in a one-bedroom apartment in Washington, D.C. 

HARRIS:  Really?

SCHULTZ:  A one-bedroom apartment, that‘s what he said.  

RALSTON:  It is a one bedroom apartment, let‘s be fair here, it‘s a one bedroom apartment, it‘s also worth a million bucks.  

HARRIS:  There you go. 

RALSTON:  Listen, but the bottom is, so what?

(CROSSTALK)

SCHULTZ:  Washington, D.C., everybody‘s got an expensive townhouse.  

RALSTON:  No, that‘s not the point. 

SCHULTZ:  You need to go to Washington and you need to see what these lawmakers live in.  They all live in plush places. 

HARRIS:  I know.  Yes, but that‘s not the way we see him.

RALSTON:  But the implication there is that he made that money while he was a senator.  That‘s what‘s false about that ad. 

SCHULTZ:  OK, now he was a successful attorney.  

RALSTON:  He was a millionaire when he got to the House in 1983.  They know that.  His—all of had his disclosure forms say that.  

SCHULTZ:  OK.  I‘m going to ask both of you the same question.  Heidi, you first.  Harry Reid said on this show today that Sharron Angle‘s lying about him, true or false?  

HARRIS:  No she‘s not lying about him. 

SCHULTZ:  She‘s not lying about.

HARRIS:  What does she say he‘s lying about?  Give me an example of something she‘s lying about.  

SCHULTZ:  Our viewers saw the interview.  You say that Sharron Angle is telling the truth about Harry Reid.  

HARRIS:  Absolutely, I think that she is.  

RALSTON:  Well, I mean, the truth picks a holiday in most campaign, doesn‘t it?  And certainly, this latest ad is not factual.  The one bad—of truly false information she‘s put out clearly that everyone‘s seen, Heidi is in the illegal immigration ads when she‘s claimed that he‘s voted for things that he clearly is not voted for.  Myself, others in the media polity fact that all pointed out that that‘s not false.  But, you know what.  

SCHULTZ:  Heidi, respond to that.  

HARRIS:  Well, I can go into the details about the legislation he‘s talking about.  But it would take too much time but basically he could have been in a situation where he would have voted for legislation that would have prevented people who became citizens from getting Social Security based on work they did illegally.  That‘s what she‘s talking about.  Now, you can say there‘s a grain of truth in this, there‘s not a grain of truth in that, but the fact of the matter is, that‘s what they‘ve done to her.  They‘ve pulled things she‘s said out of context.  Try to make her look crazy.  Hey, turn it back.  

SCHULTZ:  Is that true?

RALSTON:  Well, I actually think that most of the stuff has not been pulled out of context.  And inside Sharron Angle‘s campaign, they cringed that these things were said or have been said and then could be put on TV.  Of course things are exaggerated.  Did say—and you played some of the clips at the beginning there.  

SCHULTZ:  Exactly.  

RALSTON:  She‘s tried to change who she really is, Heidi, from the primary.  Phase out Social Security and Medicare, not my job to create jobs.  The issue with not my job to create jobs, by the way, let‘s say, she‘s right, it‘s not the senator‘s job to create jobs.  You brought up the silly point.  How do think you can criticize Harry Reid...

SCHULTZ:  You can‘t.

RALSTON: .for costing us.  

SCHULTZ:  And if she wants to get rid of the Department Energy.  What about the Nevada Testing Center which would be 30,000 jobs?  

(CROSSTALK)

SCHULTZ:  Yes, but that‘s 30,000 jobs would be gone. 

HARRIS:  The reason to criticize Harry Reid is because he‘s claiming the stimulus saved jobs.  

SCHULTZ:  Wait a minute, I‘m talking about the Department of Energy.  

HARRIS:  Right.  

SCHULTZ:  She wants to get rid of the Department of Energy.  If that is the case, that will cost this state thousands of jobs because of the Nevada testing of the nukes. 

(CROSSTALK)

HARRIS:  They lost almost 2,000 jobs because of what he did.  They‘re not happy.  

SCHULTZ:  He also got the transmission line from one end the state to the next to give compensation.  

RALSTON:  Let‘s be fair here, Ed, I mean, just because of the DOE goes away doesn‘t mean all those jobs go away.  The jobs could still exist in a different way.  But listen, the point is.  

SCHULTZ:  This is too good.  We have to run.  I have producers yelling at me because you guys are so good.  Thanks so much, Jon and Heidi.  Great to have you with us.

Now let‘s get some rapid-fire response from our panel on these stories.  Michael Steele‘s running around the country complaining about the nation‘s debt while the RNC‘s financial books continue to be disaster. 

Senator Jim DeMint is putting a bill for a new commercial attacking the republican colleague of his, Lisa Murkowski, on abortion in Alaska. 

And the Tea Party nominee Ken Buck supports the most extreme anti-choice legislation on the ballot in Colorado. 

Joining us tonight, Joan Walsh, editor in chief Salon.com.  And Michael Medved, nationally syndicated radio talk show host.  Joan, last night on this program, we featured a commercial that is running in Colorado.  It is the most despicable thing I‘ve ever seen.  It makes President Obama out to be the angel of death.  And Mr. Buck will not denounce this, is this going to hurt or help him in Colorado?  What do you think?

JOAN WALSH, EDITOR IN CHIEF, SALON.COM:  Well, I hope it hurts him.  I don‘t know if it will, quite honestly, Ed.  I think it‘s fascinating, though in so many of these states, you know Republicans, we just heard Heidi Harris tell us, it‘s all about jobs, this election is all about jobs.  But they‘re not really running on jobs.  They‘re not running on ideas to create jobs.  They‘re running—some of them are running on extreme social issues. 

MICHAEL MEDVED, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  This is not a Ken Buck commercial.  The commercial hurts Ken Buck.  It‘s a disgusting commercial.  He ought to denounce it and. 

WALSH:  But he‘s not, but he is not, Michael.  

MEDVED:  He hasn‘t denounced it.  But I assume that he will at some point.  The point about this is. 

WALSH:  I hope you‘re right.  

MEDVED:  It hurts Ken Buck if the discussion is about abortion versus abortion rights, pro-life versus pro choice.  That‘s not what is motivating this republican surge across the country.  What‘s motivating it is the desire for less government and lower taxes.  

WALSH:  Well, he seems not to be getting that message.  He seems to be using the abortion issue too as well.  I mean, maybe, this is not his attitude, I should say maybe.  But, you know, he‘s against abortion even in cases of rape and incest.  

MEDVED:  Yes.  But you see this is another example of Democrats want to change the subject.  They want to talk about.

WALSH:  Well, no.  

MEDVED:  If you‘ll remember in 2004, Republicans were attacked because we were talking about defensive marriage and Democrats said you‘re not talking about the war, you‘re not talking about the economy.  This year, Republicans want to talk about Obama‘s economic record, Democrats want to talk about anything else. 

WALSH:  I‘m sorry, Michael Ken Buck is talking about abortion.  Ken Buck is talking.

SCHULTZ:  Michael, it‘s the conservatives groups that are talking about the abortion.  

(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)

MEDVED:  But it‘s not been the major thrust of his campaign.  

WALSH:  Ed, I want to say.  He is talking about abortion.  It‘s not me.  I‘m not bringing it up.  He‘s not ducking it.  

MEDVED:  Right, I know, I understand that he‘s not ducking it.  

SCHULTZ:  Michael, we are back to the 2004 mantra for the Republicans, gays, guns and gods.  

MEDVED:  Absolutely, not true.  Not true. 

SCHULTZ:  It is true. 

MEDVED:  Ed, that‘s false.

SCHULTZ:  Look at commercials that they‘re taking out, Michael.  Look at Jim DeMint up in Alaska taking out commercials. 

MEDVED:  Distorting Lisa Murkowski.  

SCHULTZ: .of Lisa Murkowski.

MEDVED:  OK, OK, the Murkowski/DeMint issue has to do with Joe Miller won the nomination fair and square.  He‘s the nominee of the Republican Party.  And one of the differences that he has with Lisa Murkowski, who‘s running as the incumbent republican happens to be on the abortion issue.  But if you take a look at the way Republicans are going after Democrats, all across the country, social issues play almost no role.  This is an election about the economy.  It is election about jobs. 

SCHULTZ:  They‘re trying to close the deal with the social issues. 

Joan Walsh, you‘ve got the final word on this.  

WALSH:  Well, Jim DeMint is distorting her position on Murkowski‘s position on abortion.  She is not pro-federal funding for abortion.  And so he‘s lying in that ad.  So, not only he‘s bringing a social issue, he‘s also lying about it.  So, you know, I know what you‘re saying, Michael and there‘s been less of other social issues but it‘s ratcheting up in the last two weeks, you can‘t deny that.  

MEDVED:  Most of the social issues have been raised by Democrats just like they‘re focusing on person.

SCHULTZ:  No they haven‘t.  

MEDVED:  Michael Steele.  

WALSH:  I don‘t see that. 

SCHULTZ:  Democrats are not taking out the social commercials, Michael.  The social commercials aren‘t being taken out by.

(CROSSTALK) 

SCHULTZ:  We have to run.  Joan Walsh, Michael Medved, great to have you with us tonight.  

WALSH:  Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ:  Coming up, I‘m starting to think Christine O‘Donnell is just punching all of us.  Some of the stuff she‘s saying is flat-out delusional.  Roy Sekoff, founding editor of “The Huffington Post” will show us the tape.  And what the heck should Sarah Palin do, what is she got to do with the RNC‘s favorite Bondage Club in Hollywood?  We‘ll connect the dots, next on the “Playbook.”  Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  It‘s not too late to let us know what you think.  The number to dial tonight is 1-877-ed-msnbc.  Tonight‘s telephone survey question is, who do you think is more qualified to be a senator?  Harry Reid or Sharron Angle?  Press the number one for Harry Reid.  Press the number two for Sharron Angle.  Again the number to dial is 1-877-ed-msnbc.  We‘re right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  And in my “Playbook” tonight, Christine O‘Donnell‘s debates are starting to look like Leno‘s “jay-walking” segment, don‘t you think?  Earlier this week O‘Donnell had trouble recognizing the first amendment, and yesterday she couldn‘t name a single, not a single democratic senator. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  Give me a name, Christine of someone in the U.S.

Senate across the aisle that you‘re comfortable working with?

CHRISTINE O‘DONNELL ®, DELAWARE SENATE CANDIDATE:  Oh, well she‘s not a senator anymore.  But I would definitely have to say Hillary Clinton.  

CHRIS COONS (D), DELAWARE SENATE CANDIDATE:  If we elect someone who literally cannot name a single currently serving senator in my party with whom she would work, we‘re advancing someone who really has no experience.  

O‘DONNELL:  Senator Lieberman.

COONS:  Someone who has no experience in crossing the bipartisan divide.  

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ:  O‘Donnell had 57 senators to choose from, all she had to say was, I‘m willing to work with Senator Carper, who‘s a democrat and he‘s from her own state of Delaware. 

(LAUGHTER)

I can‘t wait for—I can‘t wait to hear what the founding editor of “The Huffington Post,” Roy Sekoff has to say about this one.  Nothing like some good old homegrown knowledge, huh, Roy, what do you think?

(LAUGHTER)

ROY SEKOFF, EDITOR, “THE HUFFINGTON POST”:  Well, first of all, Ed, Christine O‘Donnell saying that Joe Lieberman is a democrat.  That may be the funniest thing that she said the whole campaign.  But you know she has been a comedy gold mine.  But the really as the much more serious thing a play here, Ed, and here is what it is.  Is that, with candidates like O‘Donnell and Sarah Palin and Carl Paladino, voters are actually embracing ignorance as a virtue.  You know, they‘re going, wait a minute, she can‘t name a democratic senator and she can‘t name a recent Supreme Court ruling, well, neither can I, you know?  And so, I think that‘s what her next campaign ad need says to be, it‘s like, no I‘m not a witch, I‘m ignorant, I‘m you. 

SCHULTZ:  You know, Roy, they‘ve got it down pretty good when they make a mistake, they come back and blame the media and that‘s exactly what Christine O‘Donnell did on “Good Morning America,” here it is. 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

O‘DONNELL:  It‘s really funny the way that the media reports things because after that debate, my team and I, we were literally high-fiving each other.  We were high-fiving each other thinking that we had exposed he doesn‘t know the first amendment and then when we read the reports that said the opposite, we‘re all like, what?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN:  So you think that you got the better of him in that exchange?

O‘DONNELL:  I do think I got the better of him.  

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ:  And you know, Roy, the sad thing about all of this with so much money that is flowing now from corporations, they can make anybody.  They can make any candidate,  being smart, being on top of the issues, that isn‘t what it‘s all about, it‘s about being able to get in front of the camera and being charismatic and able to spit out the sound bites.  That‘s real failure in all of this.  What do you think?

SEKOFF:  But I think—I think what we‘re seeing though is that these candidates are not ready for primetime.  You know?  And that‘s why so many of them are refusing to actually talk to the press and who are doing less and less media things because their whole thing is, Sharron Angle is not going to win because she‘s Sharron Angle.  She‘s going to win if she wins because she‘s not Harry Reid, right?  So that‘s the thing they‘re trying to do.  They‘re just trying to avoid stepping on a land mines but they peek their nose out a little bit and  we‘ve got Christine O‘Donnell unable to name a Supreme Court, you know, ruling or we get Joe Miller and his thugs, you know, trying to  get a reporter handcuffed and taken away.  And I think that‘s where we‘re also getting into a little danger area, Ed, where we get the ignorance mixed with thuggery and I think, that‘s the very scary thing that we‘re on the verge of seeing here.  It‘s like the electorate is a can of gas and these guys are walking around flipping a Zippo lighter.  

SCHULTZ:  Roy Sekoff.  Always a pleasure.  Great to have you with us from “Huffington Post” again tonight on THE ED SHOW. 

Final page of my “Playbook,” Sarah Palin appears to have hired the woman behind the RNC‘s big night at the Bondage Club.  Can you believe that?  Well, “Time” magazine looked through Palin‘s most recent FEC disclosures and found Sarah-pac hired a fund raising consulting company headed up by Alison Myers.  A woman with the same name was fired after giving $2,000 to Republicans to watch topless women dance in bondage gear and perform sex acts in West Hollywood.  Now it could be a coincidence—well, maybe it‘s not.  

Coming up, my next guest has spent a lot of time up close and personal with Sharron Angle.  He knows her, and has known her for years and he‘s got one word to describe her and he‘ll do that next on THE ED SHOW.  We‘re coming to you live from Harry Reid County, Nevada.  You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC.  Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW, and finally tonight, I came out here to Nevada today to interview Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.  And for the life of me, folks, I just cannot figure out how this race can be a dead heat with this goofy candidate, Sharron Angle.  Now, they‘ve thrown $40 million against Harry Reid and that really is the difference.  Danny Thompson is the Executive Secretary Treasurer of the Nevada AFL-CIO.  He served as the chief lobbyist and has worked with Angle in the State Assembly for some 20 years.  If you had—great to have you with us, Danny, and I appreciate your work.  If you had to describe Sharron Angle, how would you?

DANNY THOMPSON, NEVADA, AFL-CIO:  Her ideas are certifiably nuts.  You know, absolutely one at a time, and you talked about it earlier, to do away with the Department of Energy in Nevada, the Department of Energy runs in Nevada test site.  Those people would be out of the work the next day and at the same time, she says it‘s not her job to create jobs.  City center, where we had up at one time, up to almost 12,000 workers building that thing, since it opened, they‘ve hired 10,000 people, not to mention, you know, the jobs that are created in the community.  She wouldn‘t have lifted a finger to solve that problem.  If that company—if that job would have failed, the State of Nevada would have failed because that‘s the largest gaming company in the State of Nevada, our primary industry.  And it would have destroyed the State of Nevada.  

SCHULTZ:  What‘s her program?  

THOMPSON:  I really don‘t know, except that you know she‘s a constitutionalist.  If something isn‘t in the constitution, it shouldn‘t be.  

SCHULTZ:  So good-bye Department of Education, Department of Energy. 

If it‘s not in the constitution, it‘s over.  

THOMPSON:  It‘s not something that we should be doing.  

SCHULTZ:  It‘s so generic and she‘s not very detailed.  How does that play well?  

THOMPSON:  Well, you know, I think it‘s sound bites that got her where she is, quite honestly.  And I think even in the republican establishment, they can‘t believe that she won.  But it‘s this whole anger about people situation.  That really have nothing to do with Harry Reid.  Harry Reid didn‘t create the climate in Nevada that we‘re in.  The state in deregulating bank—you know during the height of the loans on homes, your dog could get a mortgage, and you know, people got mortgages without jobs. 

SCHULTZ:  So, it‘s not a federal issue at all?

THOMPSON:  Not at all.  

SCHULTZ:  But they‘re hanging that on Harry.  Now, when I got to the airport today here in Las Vegas, I ran into Sharron Angle, and she had three folks there with her.  And they were stunned.  There‘s Ed Schultz from MSNBC.  Holly smokes.  What are we going to do now?  As very cordial, but she‘s really isolated.  She is much protected from the media.  Of course she‘s got all of this advocacy money that‘s out there.  But I want to ask you about the incident that took place at the high school here in Clark County.  How‘s that being received in the Hispanic community?  And will it make a difference for turnout?

THOMPSON:  I believe it will.  In the Hispanic community will be about 25 percent of the vote.  She basically just—you saw the clip.  It was unbelievable what she said about them.  You know, you don‘t look Latino to me, you look Asian, when this clearly—this ad is about, you know, portraying Latinos as criminals. 

SCHULTZ:  Will Harry Reid win?  

THOMPSON:  I think Harry Reid will win.  

SCHULTZ:  Close?

THOMPSON:  Very close but I believe...  

SCHULTZ:  1,000 votes.  

THOMPSON:  1,000 votes.  

SCHULTZ:  Danny, good to have you with us.  Tonight in our telephone survey I asked you, who do you think is more qualified to be a senator, Harry Reid or Sharron Angle?  Ninety seven percent of you said Harry Reid.  Three percent say, Sharron Angle.  It‘s going to be a close one in the election. 

That‘s THE ED SHOW.  I‘m Ed Schultz from Nevada.  Chris Matthews is next on MSNBC with “HARDBALL.”  We‘ll see you tomorrow night from Minneapolis.   

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

END   

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