The Ed Show for Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Read the transcript to the Wednesday show
Guests: Joe Madison, Bill Press, Cary Gordon, Mike Papantonio, Jack O`Reilly, Jesse LaGreca
ED SCHULTZ, HOST: Good evening, Americans. And welcome to THE ED
SHOW tonight from New York.
Mitt Romney actually took the silver spoon out of his mouth long
enough to accuse Newt Gingrich of being rich. Oh, they`re starting to
Democrats hope they can sit back and just watch the GOP implode, but
it won`t be that easy.
This is THE ED SHOW -- let`s get to work.
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: He`s a wealthy man, a very
wealthy man. If you have a half a million dollar purchase from Tiffany`s,
you`re not a middle class American.
SCHULTZ (voice-over): The battle of the Republican 1 percenters is
getting brutal. Now, it looks like the fight could drag on for months.
And that helps the Democrats.
Bill Press and Joe Madison are here tonight.
The Justice Department has decided to challenge the Republican effort
to block the vote. "Ring of Fire" radio host Mike Papantonio is hot on the
story and he`s here tonight.
Christine O`Donnell, the failed Tea Party Senate candidate, endorsed
Mitt Romney. Now, she`s writing his bumper stickers.
CHRISTINE O`DONNELL (R), FORMER SENATE CANDIDATE: He`s been
consistent since he changed his mind.
SCHULTZ: Sounds like "Psycho Talk" to any.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The magazine honoring protesters and their
movements all across the globe.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You could equate both of them in this article?
Are you kidding me?
SCHULTZ: And "Time" magazine has named their person of the year.
Activist Jesse LaGreca has a problem with the guy who almost won, and he`s
here to explain.
SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight, folks. Thanks for
Republicans have a big fight on their hands and Democrats -- well,
they hope to be the winners. Mitt Romney is trash-talking front-runner
Newt Gingrich all over the media. Romney questioned Gingrich`s credibility
during an interview with "The New York Times" today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROMNEY: Zany is not what we need in a president. Zany is great in a
campaign. It`s great on talk radio. It`s great in the print. It makes
for fun reading.
But in terms of a president, we need a leader -- and a leader needs to
be someone who can bring Americans together. A leader needs to be someone
of sobriety and stability and patience and temperance, to think through
issues, to be careful in the choice of words. He or she might express,
because the world listens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Romney continues to paint Gingrich as unreliable and even a
closet liberal. A new ad by the Romney camp highlights the famous global
warming campaign featuring Gingrich and Nancy Pelosi.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NEWT GINGRICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If enough of us demand
action from our leaders --
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), CALIFORNIA: Together we can do this.
CHYRON: With friends like Newt, who needs the Left?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: The Romney camp is dispatching the candidate`s wife and
Romney to more events on the trail. They hope she can succeed where her
husband has failed, convincing Republican voters he`s just like them.
Romney is also trying to push his working man credentials by focusing
on Gingrich`s wealth?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROMNEY: He`s a wealthy man, a very wealthy man. If you have a half a
million dollar purchase from Tiffany`s, you`re not a middle class American.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: All right. Now, let`s just get this straight here. Mitt
Romney is pointing out the obscene wealth of his opponent? This is the
same Mitt Romney who was photographed in an orgy of money with his friends
at Bain Capital?
This is the same guy Mitt Romney who was worth between $190 million to
$250 million? I don`t know. Is that wealthy?
No matter how dishonest the attacks are, Romney will continue them.
His campaign told politico their internal polls are showing that Newt
Gingrich is on the slide. He is slipping.
The latest NBC News/"Wall Street Journal" poll, though, doesn`t
support the Romney camp theory. Well, it shows Newt Gingrich with a 17-
point lead among the nation`s Republican voters.
At the same time, Gingrich has clear electability problems. He trails
President Obama by 11 points if an election were held today.
And the numbers are similar in another new poll. Showing that
President Obama with a 13-point lead over Newt Gingrich.
Republicans are stuck with these two candidates at the top, whether
they like it or not. Unless, of course, Ron Paul can pull off the miracle.
His team says they can get to the convention and make it a brokered
convention. We`ll see.
All great theater for months to come, but if you look at the two top
front-runners right now, one of them is not liked by the majority of the
party and the other one is not liked by the majority of the country.
The GOP is looking at the possibility of a long drawn out primary
season. Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod thinks the Democrats will
benefit from a long Republican primary? Here`s the quote that gets me:
"The longer this race goes, the more you`re going to see these Republican
candidates mortgage their general election campaign to try and win the
Mr. Axelrod, you have been fantastic for President Obama, but I am
here tonight to blow the whistle a little bit -- to tell you, don`t take
these folks on the right wing, don`t underestimate them.
Here`s what they`re doing right now: Chuck Knoll (ph), former coach of
the Pittsburgh Steelers, used have up on his chalkboard an acronym, DWIT.
DWIT. And when he put it up there, the players would say, what the heck
does that mean? DWIT. D-W-I-T. Do whatever it takes.
That`s what the Republicans are going to do to defeat President Obama.
In this long drawn-out primary battle they`re going to get in, a cat fight,
whatever you want to call it, this is all part of the process.
I do remember the Democrats talking about how Hillary Clinton and
Barack Obama went at it for months on end. It made President Obama a
better campaigner out on the trail. Well, why wouldn`t it do that for Mitt
Romney or Newt Gingrich?
Know this Democrats and liberals and progressives across this country,
when this whole thing is over with for Republicans, whether it ends in
March, or April, May, June, or goes to the convention and gets brokered.
When the Republicans come out, they`re all going to have one thing in
common: they hate this president. They want him out. They`ve obstructed
him the last 3 1/2 years and they`re not going to stop.
And somehow, they`ll find a way with this crowd across the street with
the microphone and all the right wing talkers of America to get behind
whoever they choose after their long drawn-out fight. They`re not going to
worry about what Mitt said about Newt back in February or what Newt said
about Mitt back in January. They`re going to focus on the prize. And that
is control and power in our government.
And they will do whatever they have to do to remove President Obama
when it comes to the next election. No matter how long this fight is going
It`s going to be great for us. And it`s going to be fun to watch, but
at the end, I believe that they`ll all get behind one another because they
want Obama out.
Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think. Tonight`s
question: who does a drawn-out primary fight benefit? Text "A" for the GOP
nominee, text "B" for President Obama, to 622639. We`ll bring you the
results later on in the program. Go to our blog at Ed.MSNBC.com and leave
a comment as well.
Let`s turn to my friends in the radio world. Let`s turn to Sirius XM
Radio talk show host Joe Madison, and syndicated radio talk show host Bill
Gentlemen, good to have you with us tonight.
Why is it that I`m the only one with the holiday tie on? You guys got
to get it together. Come on, now.
SCHULTZ: I`m out here with the red --
JOE MADISON, SIRIUS XM RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Next time, next time.
BILL PRESS, SYNDICATED RADIO HOST: Maybe because you`re at Rock
Center, Ed, where the big tree is so you have to dress up.
SCHULTZ: That`s true. They even tried to hang lights on me the other
All right. Bill, you first.
Is there room for the Democrats to be a little optimistic because
there might be a long drawn-out fight? What do you think?
PRESS: No. No way. Listen, you got it right, Ed. I mean, these
guys have one thing in common. It doesn`t matter who they are: Michele
Bachmann, Rick Santorum, crazy Ron Paul, they`ve all got one thing in
common. They hate Barack Obama. They`re out to get Barack Obama.
And they may be fighting among themselves, but, you know, they attack
Obama as much as they attack each other. And the whole purpose is to come
up with the strongest candidates, the strongest arguments and the
relentless push against Obama. That`s what it`s all about.
I think the longer it goes, the stronger they`re going to be.
SCHULTZ: Joe, you know, talk about desperation. Mitt Romney has Ann
Coulter doing radio ads for him in the state of Iowa. What do you make of
that? Is she a draw for Mitt Romney?
MADISON: Whoa, I`m shocked. I wouldn`t have Ann Coulter doing an ad
for Clorox. I mean, this is absolutely ridiculous. But it can`t be any
crazier than Christine O`Donnell. I mean, the O`Donnell thing was, like,
But let`s go back to the point you made. You`re absolutely right,
whatever it takes. And when you consider that they`re already messing
around, as you`re going to talk about later on, with voter suppression,
whatever it takes, they`re all going to come together.
I`m not going to buy this argument that the Tea Party -- well, they
won`t be able to make up their minds if Newt doesn`t get it.
MADISON: They hate Obama -- look, this has happened since the day
President Obama went into office. And, Ed, you`re an old athlete, I`m an
athlete. And you know the number one goal in any competition, the first
rule, is to win.
SCHULTZ: That`s the name of the game.
MADISON: That is the name of the game -- to win.
SCHULTZ: I think both these candidates, Newt Gingrich, I think Mitt
Romney, they`re going to do whatever they have to do. They`re going to
beat each other up throughout all of this.
You know, Newt is saying he`s going to take the high road. Bill, what
do you think of that?
MADISON: He`s a pit bull. He`s a pit bull.
PRESS: He`s already proven he`s not taking the high road because of
the pot shots he`s taking against -- by the way, very funny when Mitt
Romney is attacking Newt for being a wealthy man. And Newt is suggesting
that Mitt ought to give his money back.
I mean, the two of them -- I think Michele Bachmann had the best line
last Saturday night, Ed, when she called them Newt/Romney because they are
kind of one and the same.
No, but they`re not going to take the high road. Again, they will do
whatever they do. And one thing about Newt, he is nasty. Nasty Newt.
That`s how he`s known in Washington, D.C.
He was not a nice guy when he was speaker, nor since.
SCHULTZ: So, it sounds like the Obama camp is hoping that the
American people will view these guys, the closer you look, the worse they
get. I don`t know if that`s going to work or not, but these are the words
voters most associate with the top two Republican candidates right now.
For Mitt Romney, it`s "Mormon," "no," "flip-flop" and "good." For
Gingrich, the four words that associate most with voters is "no,"
"intelligent," "old" and "conservative."
Now, based on those two things, I would say it would be Newt Gingrich
that would appeal to most of those Republican voters.
Joe, what do you think?
MADISON: Well, I don`t know. All of those could very well be a
negative. I find it interesting in the use of intelligence for Newt
Gingrich, what, they`re trying to say it was a positive? But when Obama
acts intelligence, it`s a negative.
No, I think what`s -- I think what`s happening here is the American
people generally, because President Obama polls above both of them.
MADISON: I think what is happening -- it`s something I always used to
do with my kids, when they came home from school. I would ask them, what
did the teacher teach you to think? Not to believe.
And what the right wing does is that they want people to believe
something instead of teaching people to think. And I think the majority of
the people are thinking and as they see this ridiculous -- and I get it
from drivers that drive me over here.
People keep asking, Ed, what are they doing? Who are these people?
Where did they come from?
SCHULTZ: Well, that brings us to the next subject here about the
national poll. I mean, I don`t think that the Democrats should be too
overconfident here. I mean, they got to put the pedal to the metal and
they got to drive hard on this in the election season, because right now,
congressional approval, it`s the worst ever at 42 percent. Below average
at 33 percent.
Now, look, this might be a throw the bums out year, Bill Press. You
never know. I mean, it doesn`t matter if you got an "R" or "D" behind your
name. There`s been so much obstruction out there and the people are so
angry and frustrated, they might just throw them all out.
What do you think?
PRESS: Ed, no wonder they`re frustrated with Congress. No wonder
they hate members of Congress.
Look at what`s going on this week, right? They raised -- they
extended the tax cuts for the wealthiest of Americans. No problems, zippo,
And now, the idea of extending the tax cuts for the 99 percent for
working class Americans and suddenly it`s so complicated and so hard to do
and they have all these obstacles. That`s why people -- here`s what I
think is happening, Ed. Number one, the media is not doing its job.
PRESS: They play it like both sides are responsible. And that is
B.S. We know who the obstacles are.
And secondly, I don`t think the White House is hammering these guys
enough. They ought to be out there every day letting the American people
know who the obstructionists are by name. John Boehner, Mitch McConnell,
Eric Cantor. Call them out.
SCHULTZ: Joe Madison, Bill Press, you guys are great. We could go
all night long. That`s why you`re radio talkers. It`s good to have you
Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the
screen. And share your thoughts on Twitter @EdShow. We want to know what
A quick programming note: tomorrow night, Democratic Leader Nancy
Pelosi will be our special guest on this program, THE ED SHOW. We`ll be
talking about the GOP obstruction, the Democrats` plan for 2012 and a whole
Join us tomorrow night. We look forward to it.
Coming up, Gingrich may be in big trouble with evangelical voters in
Iowa, which means he might lose the caucus despite this big surge in the
national polls. We`ll talk with Reverend Cary Gordon out of Iowa on that.
The fallout continues after home improvement giant Lowe`s pulls its
ads from a reality show about Muslim Americans. The mayor of Dearborn,
Michigan, Jack O`Reilly, will be here tonight to respond.
You`re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us. We are right
SCHULTZ: Coming up on THE ED SHOW: will Newt Gingrich be able to keep
the faithful in Ohio?
Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department will look out
for voters` rights. Mike Papantonio, he`s a great attorney and he will
tell us what the Justice Department can do.
And from the Arab Spring to Occupy Wall Street, to the capitol in
Madison, protesters have left their mark on world politics. Jesse LaGreca
on "Time" magazine`s people of the year selection.
Let us know what you think on Twitter using #EdShow. We`re right
back. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GINGRICH: There`s no question that at times of my life, partially
driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked far too
hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate.
I think people have to render judgment. In my case, I said upfront
openly, I`ve made mistakes at times. I`ve had to go to God for
forgiveness. I`ve had to seek reconciliation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.
That was Newt Gingrich trying to save himself with evangelical voters
in Iowa. He`s making a sales pitch, but many evangelicals, well, they`re
not buying it. He didn`t sign the Family Leaders marriage vow back in the
summertime, and he still hasn`t signed it. Instead, he put out a position
paper saying he would uphold the institution of marriage through personal
fidelity to my spouse and respect for the marital bonds of others.
But his position paper hasn`t satisfied some evangelical voters in the
state of Iowa. Keep in mind, Gingrich may have hit 40 percent in the
national polls. Now, he`s at 40 percent. But in Iowa, he`s basically tied
with Ron Paul.
So what`s happening here? Gingrich is vulnerable in Iowa. And if
neither he nor Mitt Romney wins the caucus, the Republican race could
become more erratic than ever.
Joining me now is Reverend Cary Gordon, pastor of the Cornerstone
World Outreach in Sioux City, Iowa, and president of Peacemakers Institute.
Pastor, good to have you with us tonight.
You have got a problem with Newt Gingrich. What is it?
REV. CARY GORDON, CORNERSTONE WORLD OUTREACH: That`s exactly right.
There`s a couple false assumptions that are out there in the media right
now. A lot of the things I`ve been watching on TV and reading in the
Number one, there`s this assumption that the American people already
know what Newt did and we`re just past it. I don`t think that`s true. I
think the reason why you`re seeing his poll numbers drop is because we have
a whole new generation of voters who aren`t necessarily paying attention
when Newt was in power the last time. And the closer they look and the
more scrutiny they give to Newt Gingrich, the less they appreciate his
record. So, that`s one issue.
The other issue that seems to be out there is that Newt is trustworthy
because he`s repented and he said he was sorry. And the thing that
evangelicals in particular have to remember is that the same Bible that
teaches us to forgive people when they do wrong also warns us that if we
trust someone until they have earned it, or before they`ve earned it, we`re
being foolish and presumptuous.
And so, when Newt says, I`m sorry, forgive me, I can say, sure, I
forgive you but I don`t trust you.
My message to Newt Gingrich and my warning to evangelical voters is
Newt needs to be told to run for mayor, run for Congress again. Get some
time and prove to us that you`re a changed man.
I don`t trust him because his record is abysmal. And I feel the same
way about Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney flips and flops on the issues. Neither
one of these people can be trusted.
Another thing to remember, I want a level playing field when we come
up with Obama. Obama said what he was going to do when he ran for office.
Then after he was elected, he`s done his very best to do what he said he
was going to do.
I want the GOP to present an honest candidate that will do the same
thing, because I don`t think we`re going to beat Obama if Obama is honest
and we put some hollow personally driven person that wants power and
prestige in the challenge.
SCHULTZ: In the state of Iowa, will evangelical voters, in your
opinion, create a problem for Newt Gingrich? I mean, he`s polling very
well nationally, but in Iowa, it`s different. Are the evangelicals making
the difference there?
GORDON: I believe that they are because the younger voters are paying
attention and they`re starting to learn about Newt Gingrich. And, you
know, Newt, himself, said in the last debate that he thinks it`s important
SCHULTZ: Is there anything he can do to change this? Is there
anything he can do to change this?
GORDON: There`s nothing he can do to change my mind. I want evidence
before we take somebody and put them in the most powerful seat in the
world, before we promote them from former speaker of the House to president
of the United States, there needs to be a change that we can see. And
until he runs for a lower office and proves that he`s a changed man, it`s
absolutely inappropriate for him to be the president.
SCHULTZ: Well, I know that evangelical voters will put a lot of stock
in absolutes. I mean, they are very strong in their convictions. How many
GORDON: That`s right.
SCHULTZ: And a lot of them will show up at caucus in Iowa. Some tell
me upwards of 50 percent of the people that will be believed in the
caucuses will be evangelical Christians. If that`s the case, who do you
think has the real chance to benefit from all of this? Who do you think
the evangelical community and some 200 churches in the Assembly of God, who
do you think they`ll support, and will they follow their pastors?
GORDON: I think they will follow their pastors. The real question
is, will the pastors lead?
I can`t speak to that. I don`t know it they will lead or not. I`m
doing my best. I just don`t want to see the GOP come through every four
years and dangle this little thing about forgiveness and I repented and I`m
a changed man in front of all the evangelicals then they say, OK, so now
forget all the bad things I`ve done and make me the most powerful man in
the world, thank you.
I think we`ve got to get past this and not allow the GOP to exploit
our people. And I hope pastors are listening to your show and listening to
me on these radio shows I`ve been doing all day. We`ve got to get a noble,
honest, trustworthy person to go up against Barack Obama.
SCHULTZ: Sometimes a mainstream media has a hard time talking about
faith because they think it turns people off. I think it`s a phenomenal
political story. And I`m not quite sure that -- how could the polls
nationally show Newt Gingrich doing so well, with him struggling in Iowa?
I mean, obviously the faith vote out there has got to do something. I
mean, nationally, he`s at 40 percent, Romney at 23 percent. For lack of a
better term, you`re ready to throw both those top front-runners under the
bus and leaves you with Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum.
So, do they have a solid chance despite the national polling, in your
GORDON: I think so. I think that Rick Santorum in particular is
going to surprise a lot of people. I just heard Karl Rove say it last
night. I think it`s interesting.
Rick Santorum has a really good ground game in Iowa. He`s really dug
in and he`s got faithful, loyal followers.
And like him or hate him, Rick Santorum is honest. He tells you what
he`s going to do. He stays faithful to his principles.
GORDON: And I think that the Christians will probably coalesce behind
he and perhaps Michele Bachmann as well.
SCHULTZ: Reverend Cary Gordon, good to have you with us tonight. I
appreciate your insight on this.
GORDON: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Thanks so much.
GORDON: Republicans want to make it harder for Democratic supporters
to vote. Eric Holder and the Justice Department are finally stepping in.
And in "Psycho Talk," Christine O`Donnell is trying to claw her way
back to political relevance. But she barely opened her mouth before
reminding us why she was crushed in 2010.
Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Well, Republicans know the GOP, they got one heck of an
uphill climb in 2012. So, they`re going to try every dirty trick in the
So, let`s go to votes rights. Seventeen states have passed
legislation making it tougher, actually tougher for people to register to
vote. Many of these states now require registered voters to have a voter
ID. It`s no surprise these laws target voters who usually support
Democrats -- the young, the poor, the elderly and minorities.
Attorney General Eric Holder has finally stepped in. He says the
Justice Department will make sure civil rights are protected.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: As Congressman John Lewis
described it in a speech on the House floor this summer, the voting rights
that he worked throughout his life and nearly gave his life to ensure are,
and again, I quote, "under attack by a deliberate and systematic attempt to
prevent millions of elderly voters, young voters, students and minority and
low income voters from exercising their constitutional right to engage in
the democratic process," unquote.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Some of the new laws are already under review by the Justice
Department. The attorney general says the election system needs to uphold
the obligations of the voting rights act.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOLDER: We need election systems that are free from fraud,
discrimination, and partisan influence and that are more, not less,
accessible to the citizens of this country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: For more, let`s turn to radio talk show host "Ring of Fire"
radio show Mike Papantonio. In his real job, he`s one of the finest
attorneys in America. Mike, first it`s the unions then it`s the trial
lawyers. Now they`re trying to suppress the vote. What`s your take on all
of this? Is it too little, too late?
MIKE PAPANTONIO, HOST, "RING OF FIRE": It`s a blueprint. It might be
too little, too late. The point is this, we see the same patterns taking
place after the Republican governors came into office. They came up with a
blueprint on how to stop voters they might vote for Democrats, might vote
for Obama, from going to the polls. They did it by this, these ways, Ed.
Create obstacles, create hardships, create chaos.
For example, if you take a look at the Hispanic vote in Texas, it`s
been closed down by gerrymandering to where Hispanics have almost no input
in the political process. The next step is to do that same thing with
minorities of all kinds, the poor, with students, with the elderly.
What you`re seeing them do is this. It`s a -- if you go state to
state, this is the same pattern. Allow fewer voting stations in certain
places. Allow for fewer voting attendants to be at the voting stations.
Make the convenience issue almost impossible to where people don`t want to
show up to vote. What we see is we see situations where their intent is to
create chaos, to keep people away from --
SCHULTZ: These advocates that are out there fighting for voters`
rights, what can they do at this point?
PAPANTONIO: Well, the 1965 voting rights act is a strong act, Ed.
It`s been ignored for too long. As a matter of fact, three years ago the
U.S. Justice Department was told that this pattern was taking place. What
I like about the act, LBJ pushed this act through. You know what he did,
Ed? He said, we don`t have to show intent to discriminate. We don`t have
to prove that Rick Perry and what he`s doing in Texas was done to
discriminate. All we have to show is by way of demographics is show an
analysis where we have a disproportionate interference with minorities.
And so the threshold is not particularly difficult. What`s happened
with this administration, for some reason now they understand it. And I`m
glad to see, I`m glad to see Eric Holder talking about this.
But the question is whether or not Elvis has already left the
building. If you think about it, if they start right now trying to enjoin
a lot of these laws, it`s very difficult when you consider the federal
courts are packed, absolutely packed with Republican appointees.
SCHULTZ: So the timetable here, Mike, what I`m hearing is this is
going to have to be really a big-time priority by the Justice Department to
have it effect 2012.
PAPANTONIO: Ed, that`s exactly right. You`re going to have to staff
up. It`s going to have to be a priority that -- look, you`re going to have
federal judges that can do all types of things that owe the Republican
Party something. Now, you don`t usually hear an attorney say that, but to
ignore the fact that Republican judges are part of the agenda here, I
promise you they are, and if a Republican judge gets a case like this, they
simply put it off. They delay it. They have hearings. They have
discovery. There`s all types of ways they can delay coming up with the
decision before 2012.
And that`s the problem. That`s where Eric Holder has waited too long.
He was told early on that this was a problem. It was a pattern that
started developing in Texas.
SCHULTZ: Do you think he was slow to the punch?
PAPANTONIO: I think he was slow to the punch. I think he was slow to
the punch. The problem is this. You have a concerted effort that started
with 30 Republican governors elected, and they`re on the same sheet of
SCHULTZ: That`s the key. They`re working in unison on this. Mike
Papantonio. Great to have you on the program tonight talking about this.
I appreciate it.
Next up, the fallout continues over Lowe`s pulling ads from the show
"All American Muslim." The mayor of Dearborn, Michigan, Jack O`Reilly, will
join me in a moment.
And later, the protester is named "TIME" magazine`s person of the
year. And folks over at Fox News, they`re just outraged about it. Jesse
LaGreca will take a victory lap on this one. You`re watching THE ED SHOW
on MSNBC. Stay with us.
REP. CHRIS MURPHY, (D) CONNECTICUT: So here`s my message for the
folks at Lowe`s who made the decision. Frankly anyone out there of sound
mind who has considered getting behind the growing anti-Muslim bias, you`re
better than this. You know the history of this country and of this world
never, ever looks kindly on this kind of marginalization you have endorsed
with your actions. And whether it was against Irish-Americans or Jewish-
Americans or African-Americans, the history books make sure that this kind
of exclusionary politics becomes a stain on the reputation of anyone who
takes part in it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: That was Congressman Chris Murphy calling out home
improvement retail chain Lowe`s on the House floor today. Why? The
company pulled its ads from a show called "All American Muslim." The
reality show airing on TLC follows five Muslim families living in Dearborn,
Michigan. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The city of Dearborn, Michigan. Dearborn is a
whole other world. Being in Dearborn has allowed us to practice our faith
without losing our sense of American patriotism.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: So why would Lowe`s pull ads from a show like that? Because
one right wing group told it to? Lowe`s and scores of other companies had
been the target of a campaign by the Florida Family Association. The group
claims the show, quote, "is propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic
agenda`s clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional
So what we have here is a major American company, Lowe`s, caving to
bigotry. The Florida Family Association, you might think, must be a pretty
large and influential group to be able to pull off a stunt like this.
Well, according to Think Progress, the group has only one paid staff
member, its president, David Caton, and he`s a real winner.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CATON, PRESIDENT, FLORIDA FAMILY ASSOCIATION: Well, the show
portrays these five Muslim families that are not representative of the
entire Muslim faith. "Muslim" is defined in all the dictionaries as those
who follow Islam. And I beg anybody to find an imam in any mosque in this
country that believes that Sharia should not apply to the people in
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Let`s turn to Dearborn, Michigan, Mayor Jack O`Reilly. Mr.
O`Reilly, good to have you with us tonight. I appreciate your time. How
emotional is this subject in your community, and what`s the community
MAYOR JACK O`REILLY, DEARBORN, MICHIGAN: Well, since it`s a continuum
of an onslaught that`s been going on for some time, we`re beginning to, you
know, take it in stride in the sense that we understand there are these
people out there who are just putting out, and it`s been said already,
propaganda. Things that are to create fear, and then the fear is to get
their emotions aroused. And it concerns us greatly, but it`s becoming
something of a fixture in the fabric of our country.
SCHULTZ: Dearborn has the highest population of Muslims in America.
What does this group in Florida not know about the members of your
O`REILLY: Well, first of all, it isn`t the highest number. It`s the
largest concentration. Actually just in Detroit area, alone, we have about
34,000 Muslims in Dearborn, or 35,000, actually, Arab-Americans, not all
Muslims, quite honestly, and that`s only 10 percent of the total number
that are in just southeast Michigan, in the Detroit area. So it`s really
that we have multigenerational. We have been the home of mosques and
Muslims for a long time, much longer than many other communities.
SCHULTZ: Do you believe the show gives an accurate portrayal of
Muslim-Americans in Dearborn, Michigan?
O`REILLY: Not necessarily in the breadth of it. What it really does
is portray that Muslim-Americans are like all other Americans. They
practice their faith according to the way they choose to. They interpret
it in their own ways. And they have the same concerns, interests that we
do. They`re just like us in terms of what they think about on a day-to-day
basis and what they do on a day-to-day basis.
SCHULTZ: What do you think Lowe`s should do about this? Do you think
they have done a misstep here?
O`REILLY: You know, Lowe`s, unfortunately, is an issue, but if we
focus on that, we`re distracted from the bigger issue which Representative
Murphy talked about. It`s this whole thing about people who are trying to
promote some sort of disenfranchisement, some sort of isolation where we
want to freeze out Muslims from our country. Freeze them out, make them
unwelcome, not accept them. That`s really tragic, and it certainly goes
against -- these are people who claim to love America and yet they`re going
against its basic tenants.
SCHULTZ: Do you think people should boycott Lowe`s?
O`REILLY: I`m not sure because then it shifts it. What we really
need to do is have people begin to think about this whole thing. Look at
the show and see these people. These are people in my community. I know
all of them. Some I know tans gently, some I know very well. But they`re
people in the community. Look at them.
This is what the group is afraid of. This is what people don`t want.
They`re afraid if people actually see what real American Muslims look like,
how they behave, they`re going to realize, gee, they`re just like people in
my community. They`re just like people down the street from me.
And therefore that fear that drives the hate will be dissipated. And
that`s what they`re afraid of. All these people who want us to hate people
because they have an agenda don`t want people to see them behaving in
SCHULTZ: So do you think David Caton is a hate merchant?
O`REILLY: I think so. He`s one of many and makes money on it. One
of the fundamental things here is beware of private interests masquerading
as public virtue. This man collects donations as does Terry Jones who
visited us in the past. These people who are making an issue about
disenfranchising Muslims from America all have ways that you can donate
online, you can use credit cards. I don`t know about him, but I know the
others do. In other words, this is also a way of supporting themselves.
SCHULTZ: Yes. Mayor Jack O`Reilly, I appreciate your time tonight
from Dearborn, Michigan. I appreciate it so much. You bet.
Mitt Romney is more desperate than ever. He`s bragging about getting
the endorsement of three time loser and "Psycho Talker" superstar Christine
O`Donnell. You can`t make up her comments. The candidate who babbled, who
dabbled, should I say, in witchcraft, is back in the "Zone."
SCHULTZ: And in "Psycho Talk" tonight, Christine O`Donnell became
irrelevant big-time right after her lost her 2010 Senate election bid. But
one year later, the tea partier, well, from Delaware, she is back in the
mix, endorsing Mitt Romney. Here`s why O`Donnell picked the unemployed
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTINE O`DONNELL, FORMER SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: There are certain
things like executive experience, consistency, that are deal breakers or
tie breakers for me. His consistency, the fact that he was so strong, and
I think people will find that appealing going into the 2012 --
COSTELLO: Some people say that mitt Romney isn`t the most consistent
candidate because he`s changed his mind about big, important issues over
O`DONNELL: That`s one of the things I like about him, because he`s
been consistent since he changed his mind.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Christine O`Donnell was picking right up where she left off.
It wasn`t an accident that she lost her last election by 17 points, folks.
She`s a serial political loser because of the psycho talk that routinely
comes out of her mouth.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
O`DONNELL: I didn`t go to Yale.
Evolution is a myth. Why are monkeys still evolving into humans?
Mice with fully functioning human brains.
Where in the constitution is separation of church and state?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Government shall make no establishment of
O`DONNELL: That`s in the First Amendment?
I dabbled into witchcraft. I never joined a coven.
I`m not a witch. I`m nothing you`ve heard. I`m you.
He`s been consistent since he changed his mind.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: All right, another one for the highlight tape.
Mitt Romney, you know what, this dude must be getting real desperate,
because his campaign is playing Christine O`Donnell`s endorsement like it`s
something fantastic. They released the following statement -- "Christine
has been a leader in the conservative movement for many years. I`m pleased
to have her on my team." OK, Mitt. You can have her.
Mitt has an interesting definition of leadership, doesn`t he?
Christine O`Donnell lost three Senate elections in a row and she doesn`t
even have any Tea Party support anymore. Look at the numbers. She
recently held a Tea Party event in Iowa, and 12 people showed up. Two of
them were traveling with her.
For Mitt Romney to brag about the endorsement of a washed up Tea
Partier shows just how desperate he is. Every time Christine O`Donnell
opens her mouth, she bewitches us with a load of "Psycho Talk."
Paul Ryan squeaks past Kate Middleton as a runner-up for "TIME`s"
person of the year. Jesse LaGreca will weigh in on the right wing`s
hatchet man making the list. Stay tuned.
SCHULTZ: "THE ED SHOW" survey tonight, I asked who does a drawn-out
primary fight benefit? And 14 percent of you said the GOP nominee, and 86
percent of you said President Obama.
Coming up, from Zuccotti Park to Tahrir Square, protesters made their
voices heard. Jesse LaGreca on "TIME" magazine`s person of the year, who
they picked. His commentary and mine, next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: "TIME" unveiling its person of the year, only
this person more symbolic. It`s, you guessed it, the protester.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: That sigh of disgust came from "FOX AND FRIENDS" Brian
Kilmeade. Kilmeade and his Fox News colleagues were outraged over "TIME"
magazine`s recognition of worldwide pro-democracy movements.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s unbelievable, this movement, they equate
the uprising of the Egyptian people after 50 years of repression to a bunch
of people in Zuccotti Park who don`t like Wall Street bankers.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They have been riddled with rapes, murders and
mayhem. I should say crimes and mayhem. The point is they have been
riddled with crime.
This is "TIME" magazine, guys. In their defense in 1939 they had
Adolf Hitler as person of the year.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And Stalin before. The Ayatollah Khomeini.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, Hitler and the Ayatollah Khomeini were both
chosen as person of the year, man of the year, by "TIME" magazine. So I
put the protest movement in the same category.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: "TIME" magazine had a different explanation of why editors
chose the protester as person of the year. "No one could have known that
when a fruit vendor set himself on fire in a public square, it would incite
protests that would topple dictators and start a global wave of dissent in
2011. Protestor didn`t just voice their complaints. They changed the
"TIME" also named four runner-ups, including the right wing`s hatchet
man from Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, the guy who wants to kill
Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, the guy who won`t raise taxes on
the wealthiest Americans and will balance the budget on the backs of the
poor, the middle class, in other words, one of the very reasons why folks
have been out protesting in the streets. "TIME" called Ryan the most
influential American politician this year. Got to give the guy some
credit. There he is, just squeaking past Kate Middleton for the honor.
Joining me now is protester, activist, and freelance journalist Jesse
JESSE LAGRECA, PROTESTOR/ACTIVIST: How are you doing, Ed?
SCHULTZ: What do you make of those comments from the people on the
other network, the way they`re describing the protesters?
LAGRECA: I`m surprised they didn`t throw death panel in there as
well. I think it`s a conversation they don`t want to have. They don`t
want to talk about our democratic responsibility to govern commerce. I
mean, the commerce clause is clearly stated in the constitution. I thought
these were the constitution guys.
If anything, it shows the rank hypocrisy that`s infested the entire
Republican FOX News complex, that if you`re protesting for more tax cuts
for the rich and denying people health care, that`s all well and good, we
can promote that. But if it`s anything opposing their ideology, they`re
SCHULTZ: I guess you`re person of the year. You`re a protester.
You`re going to be in Washington tomorrow. What does this do for the
movement in anything?
LAGRECA: It does quite a bit because it really gives a voice to the
concerns that the average disenfranchised American understands. In
Wisconsin they`ve been pushing laws that make it harder to vote. I can`t
believe the hypocrisy these guys have. It`s very appropriate that Paul
Ryan was one of the runners-up, because if it weren`t for guys like him, we
wouldn`t have a need to protest. If anything I think you can`t spell
"greedy one percenter" without "GOP."
SCHULTZ: So the very actions of this congressman really has been the
root of much of the protest in this country, the radical movement against
the big three, and, of course, the willingness to stick it to the middle
class instead of the wealthiest Americans. So as you move forward on this,
if this helps the movement, how does it help the movement? I mean, this is
a magazine that does this annually. What do you make of it?
LAGRECA: I think it creates awareness and speaks to the power of
boots on the ground. And at some point that has to translate into changing
laws and using political capital in a positive way. But I think the
conversation about income inequality in this country is on everybody`s
tongue. We`re all aware the wealthiest people in society are doing better
an ever and all of us are being asked to sacrifice. I think if Congressman
Paul Ryan wanted to be honest, he would draft a budget that does not create
a bigger deficit. They do this on purpose. They cut taxes for the rich,
so they can create deficits to bash the programs they don`t like. And
people are standing up.
SCHULTZ: What kind of response do protesters get such as yourself
when you go to Washington other than having the politicians walk right past
you, tell you have to get an appointment? Where does that leave you?
LAGRECA: Actually a lot of people are glad we`re there. A friend and
I went into the Senate office building and the security guards loved us.
They said they were with us, they understand what we`re fighting for. I
think everybody who`s honest and aware understands what we`re fighting for.
We`re fighting for our futures. Not tax cuts for the rich. Not for the
one percent`s agenda pushed into legislation by the Paul Ryans of the
SCHULTZ: You think the FOX commentators that constantly rip you a new
one, do you think that help the movement and motivates folks out there
LAGRECA: Absolutely. We are blessed with idiots for enemies.
And the more they talk about us, there`s no such thing as bad press.
The more they talk about us, the more they make it so obvious they`re on
the wrong side of history.
SCHULTZ: Jesse LaGreca, keep it going. You`re in Washington
SCHULTZ: Good luck to you.
That`s "THE ED SHOW." I`m Ed Schultz. Be sure to tune in tomorrow
night. Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi will be my exclusive guest here on
"THE ED SHOW." We`re thrilled to get her on the program to talk about
Republican obstruction and plan for the Democrats in 2012.
"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
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