updated 11/30/2011 9:46:44 AM ET 2011-11-30T14:46:44

Guests: Sam Stein, Steve Deace, Krystal Ball, Sherrod Brown, Scott Olsen

ED SCHULTZ, HOST: Good evening, Americans. And welcome to THE ED
SHOW tonight from New York.

Herman Cain`s campaign is on life support, and more and more
Republicans hate Mitt Romney, and a serial cheater and Freddie Mac
historian is on the rise. The Republican field, can we come to the
conclusion this it is a complete circus? And I love it.

This is THE ED SHOW -- let`s get to work.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HERMAN CAIN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Nine-nine-nine. Doing fine.

SCHULTZ (voice-over): Herman Cain is reassessing his campaign. Newt
Gingrich is licking his chops. Mitt Romney is having his worst week yet.

Sam Stein of "The Huffington Post" and professor Michael Eric Dyson
will assess the damage the pizza man did to the Republican Party.

Republicans refuse to budge on increasing your taxes, while they
protect the super rich in this country. Tonight, all the major
developments on the payroll tax fight with Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown.

And he put his life on the line for America in Iraq and was struck
down during the Occupy Oakland protest.

Tonight, Scott Olsen joins me exclusively for his first live
television interview since leaving the hospital.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight, folks.

The strange candidacy of Herman Cain is on borrowed time. Cain told
senior staff today that he is reassessing his campaign. This is the wake
of an Atlanta woman alleging a 13-year affair with Cain. Cain has denied
the allegations of Ginger White who has been smeared by conservative Web
sites.

Today, her attorney said she has no reason to lie.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

EDWARD BUCKLEY, ATTORNEY FOR GINGER WHITE: These are embarrassing
facts. A woman isn`t going to come out and say something this embarrassing
if it`s not true. It`s embarrassing to her. That`s what people don`t
think about. It`s not something she`s particularly proud of. As she said
herself, it was inappropriate.

And so I don`t think she would come out and say this if it wasn`t the
truth.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: The allegations are serious enough to make Cain tell his
senior staff he`s deciding over the next several days whether he will stay
in the race. His campaign canceled an upcoming private dinner in New York
set up by gossip columnist Cindy Adams with guests like Barbara Walters and
Matt Lauer.

In public today, Cain put on a happy face.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REPORTER: Mr. Cain, do you have any, any idea of whether or not
you`ll be continuing on with your campaign?

CAIN: Nine-nine-nine. Nine-nine-nine. Doing fine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Just another day in 9-9. If this is the end of Herman
Cain`s candidacy, it will mark the end of a very strange couple of months
for the Republican Party. It was only the end of September when Cain began
to establish serious momentum after the Florida straw poll.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: Tonight`s winner, with 986 votes, 37.1
percent, Herman Cain.

(CHEERS)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Ah, the good old days. Pretty soon, Cain took the lead in
the national polls and was tied with Mitt Romney for the lead in Iowa.

"Politico" published a report at the end of October with two women
accusing Cain of sexual harassment. The report actually boosted Cain`s
standing or at least his bank account. During his conference call with
staff today, Cain said, "Our supporters and even some folks that we didn`t
have as supporters, they stood with us and they showed it not only in terms
of their verbal support, they showed it in terms of their dollars."

So what happens now? Fund-raising reports from November 10th show the
Cain campaign raised $9 million since October 1st -- 25 percent of those
funds came in the 10 days after the harassment allegations were brought to
life, more than $2 million in cash. Don`t forget, taxpayers, by the way,
are also kicking in money into the Cain campaign. His Secret Service
detail is paid for by you and me.

None of this hurt Cain`s candidacy. His supporters wouldn`t hear of
it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARIA BARTIROMO, CNBC: In recent days, we have learned that four
different women have accused you of inappropriate behavior. Here we`re
focusing on character and on judgment. You`ve been a CEO.

CAIN: Yes.

(BOOS)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Well, the right wing attack machine, they really had no
problem discrediting the allegations against Herman Cain and defending him
from questions about his past.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Isn`t it possible that Herman
Cain is just an innocent, honest guy trying to answer these questions as
best he can with the limited knowledge that he`s got?

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: If you got information about Herman Cain,
this has gone on for two weeks. It is hurting his candidacy. And if you
have facts and information, don`t you think it`s fair to just bring them
out now?

ANN COULTER, "DEMONIC" AUTHOR: I mean, that`s why our blacks are so
much better than their blacks.

(END VIDEO CLIPS)

SCHULTZ: Well, it`s funny how the talking heads are not defending
Herman Cain today. I think Rush took the day off. Somebody else was doing
his show.

The game is over. The Republican Party has finally realized this
shameful truth that Herman Cain is a con man, he`s a huckster. He tricked
an entire political party into propping him up as a Tea Party friendly
anti-Obama candidate, would say anything, make fun of everything else but
his 999 plan. He fooled the regular folks into giving him their hard-
earned dollars. And he made a mockery of our democratic process.

When does he get out?

Well, I think the calculation right now is just how much more can he
milk the media for exposure. He may be mopping up his reputation as best
he possibly can at this point, not even thinking about the nomination.
Because, you know, there`s the rubber chicken circuit. You got to get out
and give speeches and make a ton of money. That`s coming down the road,
right?

Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think.

Tonight` question, did Herman Cain ever have a chance at the GOP
nomination? Text "A" for yes, text "B" for no to 622639. You can always
go to our blog at Ed.MSNBC.com and we`ll bring you the result the later on
in the show.

Joining me now is Michael Eric Dyson, MSNBC political analyst and
professor at Georgetown University and author of the book "Can You Hear Me
Now." And Sam Stein, political reporter for "The Huffington Post."

Gentlemen, good to have you with us tonight.

Sam, let`s start with you. Reassessing the campaign -- I think in
political talk, that means we`re not going to be around here much longer
but let`s see what we can make of it.

Is this just putting up the flag pole and seeing which way it blows
with the public? What do you make of it?

SAM STEIN, HUFFINGTON POST: It certainly seems like that. And we
have to keep in mind the context of this. This was a presidential campaign
that was supposed to be a book tour, a national book tour to establish
Cain`s national celebrity, in fact. And so, now that it`s gone terribly
awry and now that personal questions have been raised, there`s really no
point, necessarily, in Herman Cain staying in this race. The whole point
was for him to establish better credentials.

So, when you start reassessing these things and when more and more
people come forward -- yes, I think you don`t say you`re reassessing unless
you`re really considering actually leaving.

SCHULTZ: Michael, he fooled a lot of people. Now, he`s not out of
the race yet. Maybe a political miracle can take place, I doubt it. But,
I mean, even the guy that put together his 999 plan said it wasn`t that
good. How did he manage to trick so many people for so long? What do you
think?

MICHAEL ERIC DYSON, GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY: Well, I there was a
desperation among the Republicans to find a figure who could counter the
Obama factor, so to speak. When you saw the Ann Coulter quote there, "our
blacks are better than their blacks."

So, Herman Cain was the better black to Obama`s worse black. But the
reality is, is that he fulfilled the stereotypes of what authentic
blackness was about. After all, he said, look, I`m the black guy who
really has the slave experience. I`m not from Hawaii. I`m going to be the
better assertion of blackness in the Republican Party, I`m going to win
more votes than anybody among black people since Eisenhower.

And so, they rode this dark horse, so to speak, into the future,
thinking that Herman Cain could deliver and what he`s ended up delivering,
of course, is a bunch of mess and chaos that has really upended his
campaign, perhaps.

SCHULTZ: Go ahead, Sam.

STEIN: There`s also -- I mean, let`s not dismiss the fact there was a
story to Herman Cain that really appealed to conservatives. He was a self-
made businessman. He was espoused in very conservative policies. He, you
know, established himself in college as this up and comer and had taken
over businesses and done fairly decent with them -- and all those things
appealed to the conservative because but it was also so very shallow.

And once you started digging a little bit below the surface, as
reporters do, as soon as his character issues arose, it was always a very
soft 30 or so percent of support he had and it was bound to go as soon as
there was problems.

DYSON: Yes, I think. But the quest for that story, itself, is a
shallow approach to a broader political landscape, so to speak. So, yes, I
think Sam is absolutely right that they wanted that story, that narrative
thrust.

But that trajectory was going to be circumvented by a couple things.
First of all, that Herman Cain wasn`t that deep.

STEIN: Yes.

DYSON: And secondly, that he dismissed the necessity to have the
experience the president needed, like Uzbekistan or whatever that is, and
then to dismiss the need for foreign policy information, I`ll leave it up
to my generals.

Pretty quickly, it became apparent Herman Cain wasn`t ready for
primetime.

SCHULTZ: Gentlemen, no pun intended here, but there`s no godfather of
the Republican Party that would step up and say, dude, you got to step out,
you`re hurting the brand. I mean, it`s just drip, drip, drip.

What about that, Sam?

STEIN: Well, I think you`re starting to see that happen more and
more. We had a piece up today about Republicans beginning to say, listen,
the tar that`s coming here is on the party at large, not just on the Cain
candidacy.

But I think you`re right, Ed. I mean, where are the people who are
going to say, enough`s enough?

I have my suspicions that the first story about the accusations was
probably planted by one of those party elders because they wanted -- or
they understood Cain`s candidacy was very soft.

SCHULTZ: Well, does that really matter? Does that matter? I mean,
you have a line of women that are coming out with accusations.

This is the answer that Cain gave yesterday about possible future
allegations.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CAIN: You go through life and you believe that you have some people
that are friends and when someone that appears to be a friend turns around
and concocts this story, you got the question the hundreds of thousands of
people that I have met in my life, 100,000 people could possibly come out.
Do I know of any that might come out? Not off the top of my head.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Michael, it`s entertainment at this point. Is he a serial
liar? What do you think?

DYSON: I don`t know, Ed. It might be the leaning tower of pizza.

STEIN: Ah, no.

(LAUGHTER)

DYSON: You know, look, it`s all baloney. Whatever food group you
want to appeal to here, I think it`s pretty apparent that Herman Cain is in
a fix here and, of course, Newt Gingrich is in no better position, no
superior, morally, position, to reprimand him.

But at the same time, I think what`s interesting here is Newt`s
philosophy is get all your stuff out, put it on the table, let it be
transparent. You have to celebrate that.

I think in Herman Cain`s case, as with many Republicans and many
conservatives, there is the veneer of a kind of moral perfectionism. But
it`s all undercut by all of our humanity because none of us can measure up
to that.

SCHULTZ: Look, not to pass personal judgment, but the man wants to be
president of the United States, he has to be honest and truthful with the
taxpayers.

What Newt Gingrich has gone through and the way he`s handled it and
the way Herman Cain has done it is just two totally different train wrecks
here.

STEIN: Let me expand on that for a second. You could theoretically
say, listen, this relationship, the latest one was a consensual one and
it`s a private matter and I don`t really want to talk about it.

But, Ed, you`re right, if you want to be president, you have to be
upfront and honest. At this juncture, it`s really an open question if he
has those characteristics.

SCHULTZ: Well, if he wants to be president of the United States, as
conservatives used to say when Bill Clinton was in, that character counts -
- it seems to me whether it`s private or not, he is cheating and he is
doing something deceitful on someone who he`s supposedly more committed to
than anybody.

STEIN: The economy can be made, for instance -- you could say this
has really no bearing necessarily on how he could handle the job as
president. Now, yes, you`re right, in a Republican primary context, that`s
not going to fly because it is the party`s composed -- a good chunk of it
is composed of the religious conservatives who wouldn`t want that.

DYSON: But look at this -- why do we measure character in regard to
these private matters? The reality is, is that public morality is just as
critical and the problem with the Republicans is they have quarantined
concern about morality to the shape of a bad or one`s own personal life as
opposed to the public disposition or public nature of the judgments you
made. You decide to do things and commit war and bomb people, and a whole
bunch of things -- those are character issues as well.

SCHULTZ: It is huge. I think it`s huge. And everybody has to render
judgment on whether they think it`s a big deal or not. The Republicans
need to do it right now -- the party that has always said they`re all about
family values.

Got to ask you this, gentlemen, before we go. He steps out, who
benefits. Sam?

STEIN: Clearly, I think Gingrich is the one who benefits. Obviously
there`s been a good chunk, maybe 70 percent of the party who just isn`t
willing to commit to Mitt Romney. And as soon as those non-Romney
candidates whittle down a little bit, the one last standing is going to
win. Right now, that`s Gingrich.

Now, keep in mind, there is a chance that Jon Huntsman can make a run
at this thing but his votes are going to come primarily from people who
would also consider Mitt Romney as a candidate.

SCHULTZ: He is dry toast but he`s a smart guy. I`ll tell you that.

Michael, what do you think? Who gains when Cain tips over in this
race?

DYSON: Well, it`s a Seussian nightmare for Herman Cain because I
think the Gingrich who stole Christmas is here. And I think that there`s
no question that Newt Gingrich benefits from this, because ironically
enough, because he`s been straightforward about his own peccadilloes, his
foibles, and his downfalls, not willing to be judgmental against Herman
Cain, he accrues a kind of moral authority in inverse proportion because
he`s not trying to diss anybody but at the same time his own funkiness is
out there. So, he`s benefiting from this in an ironic twist.

SCHULTZ: He`s saying I`ve been there, done that, I know not to
comment on it.

Gentlemen, great to have you with us tonight. Michael Eric Dyson, Sam
Stein, good to have you on.

Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the
screen and share your thoughts on Twitter with #EdShow. We`ll be featuring
your tweets throughout the show tonight. Got a lot of response on that
last night. We want to know what you think.

Coming up, Newt Gingrich could be the new Republican front-runner, so
Republicans -- well, they`re going to have to forgive him for things like
global warming. That ad he did with Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Who`s going to
forget that? Not me.

Later, Republicans are hedging on a tax cut that would put $1,500 in
the pockets of middle class Americans because the richest 2 percent of this
country is really what the Republicans are protecting. Ohio Senator
Sherrod Brown joins me for that discussion.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Coming up, as Newt Gingrich takes the lead in the polls,
he`s back tracking on a host of issues.

Radio host Steve Deace of Iowa and Democratic strategist Krystal Ball
on Newt`s surge and if Mitt Romney can regain the top spot.

In "Psycho Talk," John Kasich, my friend from Ohio, who never came to
sit with me, avoids all of his bad press by not reading the newspaper.

American Airlines files for bankruptcy protection to reorganize, but
it`s the workers who will bear most of the burden. I`ll have a commentary.

Later, an ED SHOW exclusive: Scott Olsen, the Iraq war veteran injured
at Occupy Oakland last month is out of the hospital and he`s speaking out
live on television on this show for the first time.

And we want to hear from you. Tweet us with #EdShow. We`ll feature
your comments throughout the show there at the bottom of the screen.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

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

Let`s talk about Newt. Newt, welcome to the front-runner status. Six
national polls have you ahead of Mitt Romney. The latest poll in both Iowa
and South Carolina have you, Newt, in the lead.

So your backpedaling is now in high gear. This was Gingrich in a 2008
ad with then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi on global warming.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), CALIFORNIA: We don`t always see eye to eye, do
we, Newt?

NEWT GINGRICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: No, but we do agree, our
country must take action to address climate change.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Did he say agree? That`s a problem.

So, here`s Gingrich telling O`Reilly, it was a mistake.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: Well, I`ve said it`s one of the dumbest things I`ve done in
recent years. I actively oppose cap and trade. I testified against it the
same day Al Gore testified for it. But the commercial was just a mistake.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: You want me to give you the real script? You do not sit
next to Nancy Pelosi and try to get the Republican nomination at any time.

Gingrich has supported a health insurance individual mandate, as far
back as 1993 when he was speaker.

And in 2005 in a forum on health care with Senator Hillary Clinton, he
said this --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: And so I`m actually in favor of finding a way to say,
whatever the appropriate income level is, you ought to have either health
insurance or you ought to post a bond.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: But here`s Gingrich explaining to the New Hampshire "Union
Leader" why he now thinks an individual mandate is unconstitutional.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: A Congress which can compel you to do something like that
could compel you to do anything. I mean, what`s the limit to Congress`
power to dictate your life?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: So, can this guy actually get the nomination after sitting
next to Nancy Pelosi and working with Hillary Clinton?

Wait, it gets better. In the same 2005 health care forum, the
Newtster supported a transfer of wealth.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: The right has to decide that some aspects of the working
poor has to involve transfer of finances. To ask people in the lowest
paying jobs to bear the full burden of their health insurance is
irrational. It`s not going to happen.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: You mean, that graph I`ve been putting up for weeks on end,
Newt`s down there with the folks on the blue line? I doubt it. I guess
you`d have to say oops. That ain`t going to fly in today`s Republican
Party.

So, here`s Newt calling on President Obama to repudiate the so-called
class warfare.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: I repudiate, and I call on the president to repudiate, the
concept of the 99 percent and the 1. It`s un-American. It`s divisive. It
is historically false.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: So how in the heck is this all going to play out in Iowa?

Let`s bring in radio talk show host Steve Deace and Democratic
strategist Krystal Ball. Great to have both of you with us tonight.

Steve, I want to know, start with you, you had a focus group there in
Iowa with evangelical questions. Tell us about it. What happened?

STEVE DEACE, RADIO TALK SHOW: Well, it means Herman Cain if our
evangelical focus group is indicative of where evangelicals in Iowa are in
mass, Herman Cain and Rick Perry are toast. I think they would prefer to
see more assertiveness from Rick Santorum and Michele Bachmann who they
view as closer of their own.

And I think they`re intrigued by Gingrich`s brilliance but also leery
of whether or not they can trust him and he still has that case to make.

SCHULTZ: Krystal Ball, can they be enamored with all the flip-
flopping that Newt has been doing and cozying up to Nancy Pelosi and
Hillary Clinton on issues? How`s that going to work?

KRYSTAL BALL, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, I have to say -- I mean, I
do think Newt Gingrich`s flip-flopping has been a bit more convincing than
Mitt Romney. It`s a low bar. And I think he`s handled this actually quite
well by putting it all out there on his Web site saying, here it is, here
are the attacks you`re going to hear, here`s my response. He got out in
front of it.

And let`s be honest. Newt Gingrich is someone of a known quantity, so
there`s plenty for Iowa voters not to like about him. They just have to
decide, are they that desperate to have a Mitt Romney alternative that
they`re willing to overlook Newt Gingrich`s past with sitting on a couch
with Nancy Pelosi?

SCHULTZ: Steve, this is going to come down to evangelical Christians
deciding in Iowa if Newt Gingrich is good enough for them. And I know that
the percentage of evangelical Christians that go to these caucuses is very
high.

So how is this going to play out? Is Gingrich -- is he in the lead in
Iowa, in your opinion, from what you hear?

DEACE: I think Gingrich is in the lead in Iowa from a mind share
perspective. His organization still trails behind where Michele Bachmann,
Rick Santorum, or even Ron Paul, who has the best organization in the
state. He pales in comparison organizationally to them.

But, as -- you know, as my counterpart here said, he`s such a known
figure. He doesn`t need the organization Rick Santorum needs. I mean, he
can generate either buzz or negativity organically just by being Newt
Gingrich. So, he needs a better organization but he doesn`t need the
monumental ground game that some of the other candidates need.

SCHULTZ: You know, Krystal, if the evangelical Christians are so
protruding, so to speak, in the caucus process, and it is different when
it`s a caucus, why wouldn`t Michele Bachmann or Rick Santorum have a good
showing in Iowa after as much time as they`ve spent there and how they are
aligned with them ideologically and as far as faith is concerned? What
about that?

BALL: Well, it`s really interesting this year because the candidates
who have spent sort of the least time on the ground, doing the least
groundwork and traditional organizing, the ones who have been sort of
selling their books have done the best. This primary`s been so interesting
because the debates have really mattered and have really set the tone.

So I think voters in Iowa --

DEACE: I can answer that.

BALL: Go ahead, because I was going to say, voters in Iowa are
looking for a basic level of electability that I think they`re not seeing
in Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum.

SCHULTZ: What about that, Steve?

DEACE: I can answer what Krystal just said. This is the familiarity
breeds contempt primary. What is happening is the less voters see of
candidates, the more they like. The reason why is because Republican
primary voters, especially conservatives, are looking for is a champion.
They do not want somebody who dodges THE ED SCHULTZ SHOW.

They want somebody who comes on here, fights, plays offense and
convince people that the values in the Republican party platform --

SCHULTZ: Well, that would be Rick Santorum because he`s the only one
who`s been on here. Early on Herman Cain was here. Rick Santorum got on
here and talked about manufacturing and creating jobs. So, I don`t know.

Most of the -- look, you have to face it. The Republican candidates
go to FOX News. They go to safe haven. They don`t want any confrontation
whatsoever.

DEACE: It`s hurting them.

SCHULTZ: Why is it hurting them?

DEACE: It`s hurting them, Ed, because a lot of Republican primary
voters -- and this is not a knock on FOX News, but in general, a lot of
Republican primary voters are afraid their way of life is at stake. They
want someone who will fight for their value system.

Seeing all these campaigns up close, you know, I would not want to
root for people to be unemployed in a bad economy like this. I will tell
you this, I take every single one of the consultants for every single one
of the Republican candidates and I`d fire them tomorrow. They`ve done a
huge disservice to a lot of these candidates. They`ve taught them it`s all
about playing defense. They`re all playing the prevent offense.

And the one thing our focus group told us last night they are tired of
is they are tired of hearing like pundits like you talk about how no
conservative has laid a glove on Mitt Romney. They want someone to lay a
glove on Mitt Romney because they feel like if you won`t stand up for Mitt
Romney when it`s in your best interests, then you won`t stand up for the Ed
Schultzes of the world when it`s in our interest.

BALL: Well, you know, the reason no one has laid a glove on Mitt is
because Mitt`s support is basically stable at 20 percent and they`re
fighting to be that anti-Mitt alternative. If this truly turns into a
choice between "A" being Mitt Romney and "B" being another candidate, Mitt
Romney cannot win in that scenario.

DEACE: I agree with that.

BALL: And going to what Steve says -- yes, to the point of Steve is
saying, you know, most voters aren`t looking at where are they on this
issue and that issue. They`re basing it on a gut instinctive level. Do I
trust this person? Do I think they understand what I`m going through and
are they going to fight for me?

And I do think they`re seeing that fighter in Newt Gingrich.

SCHULTZ: Well, a wise old conservative told me today on my radio
show, Richard Viguerie, that one of three people is going to be the next
president of the United States. It`s either going to be Barack Obama, it`s
either going to be Newt Gingrich, or is it going to be the former governor
of Massachusetts who just can`t get above the 20 percent level, as you were
talking about.

We shall see.

Steve, Krystal, great to have you with us tonight. Appreciate the
conversation.

Comings up: we found someone who can learn something from Sarah Palin.
It`s the highly unpopular governor of Ohio. John Kasich, he`s in the zone
next.

Later, American Airlines files for bankruptcy. What does that mean
for the workforce? Nothing good.

Stay tuned. I`ve got commentary on that.

You`re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. We`re right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: And in Psycho Talk tonight, Ohio Governor John Kasich shows
just how little he cares about his own state.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), OHIO: Should know I don`t read newspapers in
the state of Ohio. Very rarely do I read a newspaper, because just like I
think that presidents have done in the past, reading newspapers does not
give you an uplifting experience.

From time to time, people will send me articles and things I need to
know about. But I have found that my life is a lot better if I don`t get
aggravated by what I read in the newspaper.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: John Kasich should stop worrying about making his own life
better and start working about and worrying about making a life better for
other folks in Ohio. Here are a few headlines from Ohio papers that the
governor could have benefited from reading: "Cleveland Rally Assails Kasich
And Senate Bill 5." I like that one.

"Governor Kasich is Trying to Cut Too Much From Local Government Too
Quickly." That`s another dandy. "Poll Shows that Ohioans See Senate Bill
5 as Egregious Overreach." That might be my favorite.

If Kasich had glanced at some of those articles, maybe he would have
realized how completely out of touch he was. The one paper I wish he would
have picked up is this one from the morning after the Senate Bill 5 was
defeated by over 20 points: "Unions Get Revenge." Does it get any better
than that?

If Kasich wants to avoid more headlines like that, he should learn a
lesson from the Sarah Palin school of journalism.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KATIE COURIC, CBS NEWS ANCHOR: What newspapers and magazines did you
regularly read?

SARAH PALIN, FORMER GOVERNOR OF ALASKA: I`ve read most of them,
again, again, with a great appreciation for the press, for the media.

COURIC: What ones specifically? I`m curious.

PALIN: All of them. Any of them that have been in front of me over
all these years.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Oh, yeah. Sarah reads all of the newspapers. We can tell
by her interviews. Maybe John Kasich can actually learn from something
from the half term former governor of Alaska. Because saying that you
don`t read the newspaper because it`s not uplifting is selfish Psycho Talk.

Republicans say they`ll support an extension of the payroll tax cut,
but they aren`t saying how they`ll pay for it. Senator Sherrod Brown of
Ohio is next. He reads the paper.

And one month ago, a peaceful Occupy Oakland protest turned violent
when police used tear gas, rubber bullets and other projectiles to evict
the crowd. The Iraq vet who suffered a fractured skull joins me for his
first live television interview since his injury.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW. This holiday season, families
in America will spend on average about 700 dollars a piece per family.
What would you do with an extra 1,500 dollars? Well, if the Republicans
had their way, the answer to that question would be nothing. Because you
and your family wouldn`t get that money in the first place.

I`m talking about the payroll tax cut. This week, Senate Democrats
proposed an extension that would give middle classers a break. Think about
that. The average working family would have about 1,500 dollars a year
more to spend. Oh, gas going up, all that kind of stuff. You know,
clothes more expensive; 1,500 bucks is a lot of money.

That, of course, would offset the cost, millionaires would pay a small
surcharge. And that`s what the Republicans, well, they don`t like that.
They want to protect the mega wealthy, a very small, yet very special
percentage of the population. Two percent, to be exact.

Under the Democratic plan, supported by President Obama, about 345,000
taxpayers will see a tax increase. That`s it. It`s a sliver. These are
the guys who have had all the breaks over the last ten years. These are
the guys who aren`t paying their fair share. We should restore the old
rate. That`s my feeling.

And if the payroll tax cut expires, 100 million households would see a
tax increase. Today, the Republicans finally woke up and said that they`d
go along with a tax cut for the middle class, but they`re still protecting
the point two percent.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R), MINORITY LEADER: I think at the end of the
day, there`s a lot of sentiment in our conference, clearly a majority of
sentiment for continuing the payroll tax relief that we enacted a year ago
in these tough times. We believe with this kind of deficit, we ought to
pay for it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Joining me now is Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio. Senator,
good to have you with us tonight.

SEN. SHERROD BROWN (D), OHIO: Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ: Republicans, you have to get them credit. They do a hell of
a job of protecting the wealthy. Now they`re coming forward saying, OK,
we`ll do something. Do you think you`ll ever get any revenues on the table
from these guys?

BROWN: I don`t know. This is -- we`ve seen this movie. This two
percent -- two or three percent, depending on what we do, payroll tax cut
is, in some sense, a cost of living adjustment, because wages have been so
flat for so long in this country for the middle class. And this 1,400 or
1,500 dollars a year is real money that will really matter for families,
for maybe getting to go out to eat once in a while, maybe paying for their
kids` books, helping with all the cost of living increases they`ve had.

SCHULTZ: Soccer shoes, man. I mean, you know, soccer shoes, hockey
skates. All that kind of stuff.

BROWN: And families -- I just don`t get this. The Republicans -- you
know, two weeks ago was they were not willing to invest in infrastructure
because they had to protect the tax -- cut taxes for the rich. Next week,
it`s going to be school construction. If they don`t do it, we`re working
on that issue.

All the kinds of -- before a few weeks ago, it was putting money --
helping local, state governments hire more teachers and police officers,
but the Republicans had to, as always, protect tax breaks for people making
over a million dollars.

This isn`t even millionaires. This is people making a million dollars
and up. And they`d only pay this surcharge on the first dollar they made
over a million dollars. Yet Republicans always come back to how do we
protect the richest people in this country?

The public`s getting sick of it. They`re sick of it in Ohio with
Issue 2. They`re sick of it in Occupy Wall Street. They`re sick of it
when they think that 90 percent of the people in this country have had very
little income increase in the last few years, if any. All to protect the
rich.

It`s not class warfare. The class warfare is how people on top in
Wall Street and on top have committed class warfare against the middle
class. And their friends in the Senate are still protecting them, day
after day after day.

SCHULTZ: So senator, what do you think that they would put on the
table to offset this? They`d go after the big three somehow, wouldn`t
they?

BROWN: Yes, I guess. You asked me to think like Mitch McConnell. I
don`t know. I think whatever they can do to distract the public. They
might -- they will cut something that middle class America cares about.
Maybe they go after Head Start, maybe they go after who knows what.

But the fact is that we ought to pay for this by -- it`s good we`re
paying for it. That`s the right thing to do. We don`t want to add to the
deficit for this. But we have to do it in a way that doesn`t hurt people,
the broad middle class in this country. And the wealthiest, as you point
out on this show almost every night, have done pretty darn well the last
few years.

SCHULTZ: They`ve done great. Some Democrats are against the
extension, the payroll tax holiday. What do you make of that? Why are
they?

BROWN: I mean, there`s concern because it really is the first time
that it`s taken -- because we`re cutting the payroll tax, that money has
gone into Social Security before. We have supplanted it with general fund
dollars. Some think that`s not great public policy. It may not be.

But right now, our focus has got to be on job growth. John McCain`s
economic adviser in `08 said this will create at least 700,000 jobs,
extending these tax cuts for the middle class and unemployment compensation
will create -- some say it will take us through a recession if we don`t do
it. That`s just -- that`s outrageous that we would even consider pulling
the economy back.

You know, Mitch McConnell said a year or so ago that his number one
goal is to defeat Barack Obama. If he can do something kind of quietly,
surreptitiously and pull us back into recession, then maybe he`ll get his
way.

SCHULTZ: Senator, got to ask you about the White House. Where do you
think they`ll come down on this? How much of an advocate will the
president be for this?

BROWN: I think the president will be an advocate, because the
president more than anything wants to see economic growth. I think his
focus has been pretty good now. He`s been a little more aggressive, a
little more positive on what do we do for the middle class? How do we pay
for it by taxing those that have done very, very well.

You remember when President Clinton raised taxes on the wealthy in the
1990s, we had 21 million private sector jobs created. When Bush cut taxes
on the rich, this trickle down just didn`t work. We had no real
significant job growth other than keeping up with demographics a little
bit.

SCHULTZ: Senator, good to have you with us. Sherrod Brown of Ohio
here on THE ED SHOW tonight. Thanks so much.

American Airlines files for chapter 11. What will it mean for
workers? That`s next. This is THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Well, it`s more rough and tumble in the airline industry.
and the workers are about to get screwed, again. This time American
Airlines has filed chapter 11 in New York court, claiming labor costs and
fuel costs are causing the problem. CEO Tom Horton said, "it became
increasingly clear that the cost gap between us and our competitors was
untenable."

We`ve heard this story before. Eight years ago, union employees took
a 33 percent pay cut. United went after health care, sick leave and
vacation. To this day, none of that was ever restored. In 2002, United
and US Airways went down this road.

Now it`s American Airlines` turn to screw workers. And that`s exactly
what it is. The airline has 24 billion in assets, 29 billion in
liabilities, and over four billion in cash. But it`s the workers` fault.
It`s easy to file chapter 11, nail the workers and then, of course, go
blame the market. This is another reason the 99 Percenters are in the
street in this country.

Follow the story. I want you to follow this story and watch
management take multimillion dollar bonuses. I guarantee you it`s going to
happen. It does every time.

After United filed in 2002, the workers, oh, they were excited. They
got a new contract. And months later, the airline said, well, they
couldn`t fund the pension and they threw it off on the Pension Benefit
Guarantee Corporation. Sound familiar?

Some employees saw that retirement go from 1,800 dollars a month to
200 dollars a month. And the boys in the front office went home fat and
happy. And keep in mind, the airline is blaming fuel costs?

Well, your tax dollars are subsidizing the oil industry. And they
paid zero tax and some got a refund from the IRS. Go figure.

A violent clash in Oakland, California, was a game changer for Occupy
movements. Iraq war veteran Scott Olsen was there and suffered a fractured
skull. Today, Scott is on his way to a full recovery and he joins me for
an exclusive interview, next. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Tonight on THE ED SHOW survey I asked, did Herman Cain ever
have a chance at the GOP nomination? Six percent of you thought he did; 94
percent of you said no.

Coming up, Occupy Oakland protester and Iraq war veteran Scott Olsen
joins me for the first live interview. How he`s recovering and his
thoughts on how the movement has progressed. That`s next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(CROSS TALK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Help him. Help him. Help him.

(CROSS TALK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What happened? What happened?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He got hit.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He got shot.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s your name? What`s your name? What`s your
name?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (EXPLETIVE DELETED)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Medic.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: That violent clash between police and Occupy Oakland
protesters on October 25th took the movement to a whole new level. Police
resorted to using tear gas, rubber bullets and other projectiles in an
attempt to evict the protesters. Twenty four-year-old Scott Olsen, an Iraq
war veteran, who did two tours in Iraq, was critically injured when he was
hit in the head by a police projectile, reportedly a tear gas canister.

He ended up in the hospital with a fractured skull and without the
ability to speak. One month later, Scott is on his way to a full recovery.
But there is still no official answer about what hit him that night and who
launched it. An investigation of the Oakland Police Department is ongoing.

America, let me introduce you to a tough Wisconsin kid, Scott Olsen,
Iraq war veteran and member of the Iraq Veterans Against the War, joins me
tonight. Scott, thanks for your time. Americans want to know how you`re
doing. How`s your recovery going?

SCOTT OLSEN, IRAQ WAR VET AND OCCUPY OAKLAND PROTESTER: Well, Ed, I`m
doing better every day. Every day I feel better. And it`s not always been
a pleasant process. It`s been quite frustrating, but I`m doing better.

SCHULTZ: Scott, how hard was this for you in recovery, knowing that
you couldn`t talk, that you had to slowly bring that back? That had to be
really scary. Talk about that.

OLSEN: Yeah. It was really weird. I -- my brain was mostly working
OK, but I couldn`t get these words out of my mouth. And I had a head full
of words that I wanted to say, but I couldn`t make them come out. It was
very frustrating.

SCHULTZ: What do you remember about the night you were hit?

OLSEN: I remember almost everything. I wasn`t there that long. I
was standing next to my friend in the Navy, dress blues. We were standing
there for the right that we had to exist there, to be there.

SCHULTZ: What do you know about the investigation into who fired the
projectile that hit you?

OLSEN: All I really know is that there is an investigation under way.
I haven`t been updated on the status of it. So we`ll see about that in the
future.

SCHULTZ: Were you shocked that it got to this level? And what did
you think of that environment when it was happening?

OLSEN: I don`t know. I mean, when I woke up in the hospital, it was
kind of weird to be a, you know, national news story like I became. It was
a bit overwhelming. But, you know, I`m happy to step into these shoes and
guide this movement and be somebody to look up to for some people.

SCHULTZ: Do you regret going out there?

OLSEN: Not at all.

SCHULTZ: Will you do it again?

OLSEN: Yeah.

SCHULTZ: And why are you out there?

OLSEN: I`m there protecting the rights that we have. When I took the
enlistment oath, when I joined the Marines, I swore to uphold and defend
the Constitution from enemies foreign and domestic. And I`m continuing to
do that.

SCHULTZ: Where do you think the movement is now, Scott?

OLSEN: It`s tough to say. It`s been changing a lot, but I don`t
think it`s going anywhere any time soon. I think it`s -- the only place I
think it`s going is up, gaining interest.

SCHULTZ: What do you think about the mayor of Oakland, her decision
to crack down on the protesters?

OLSEN: I don`t think it was right for her to do that. We have the
right to be in Oscar Grant Plaza and to voice our grievances any time of
day.

SCHULTZ: I have to ask you, people have called you un-American.
What`s your response to that?

OLSEN: I`ve been called a disgrace before this even happened, just
for my views on the war and other things like that. And it upsets me, but
it doesn`t surprise me to hear.

SCHULTZ: Scott Olsen, I want to thank you for coming on the program
tonight. God bless you. Keep fighting hard. And keep recovering. We`ll
follow your recovery. All the best to you, my friend.

OLSEN: Thank you, Ed.

SCHULTZ: That`s THE ED SHOW. I`m Ed Schultz. You can listen to my
radio show, Sirius XM Radio, Channel 127, Monday through Friday, noon to
3:00 p.m. You can follow me on Twitter @EdShow and @WeGotEd.

"THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.

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

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