updated 2/16/2012 12:23:30 PM ET 2012-02-16T17:23:30

Guests: Tom Barrett, Sam Stein, Scott Paul, Jim Koeberl, Katrina Vanden Heuvel, Bob Shrum, Bill Rhoden

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

Today, President Obama went to ground zero for labor and the fight in
America, and gave Governor Scott Walker a lesson in creating jobs. I love
it.

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

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Manufacturing is coming
back. Companies are starting to bring jobs back.

SCHULTZ (voice-over): It was a tale of two leaders in Wisconsin
today. One of them has a much better story to tell.

OBAMA: It is time to stop rewarding companies that ship jobs overseas
and start rewarding companies that are creating jobs right here in the
United States of America.

SCHULTZ: The politics and policy of the president`s big trip to the
Badger State with Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and "Huffington Post`s" Sam
Stein.

SARAH PALIN (R), FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR: Barack Obama needs to
rethink what he has just done to the people of America because we`re rising
up on this one.

SCHULTZ: The radical Republican war on women continues. "The
Nation`s" Katrina Vanden Heuvel is here with reaction.

Rick Santorum`s hard right turn has him up nine points in Michigan.

RICK SANTORUM (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: These elite snobs!

SCHULTZ: Bob Shrum has the latest on the race.

ANNOUNCER: Lin puts it up. Jeremy Lin from downtown!

SCHULTZ: And why didn`t anybody see Jeremy Lin coming? Now, even the
president is caught up in Lin-sanity. Director and super Knick fan Spike
Lee and Bill Rhoden of "The New York Times" will weigh in tonight.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us, folks. Thanks for watching.

If there is one governor in the United States of America who
represents the complete opposite of what President Obama stands for and
what he`s working for, it is the guy he came face-to-face with today, his
name, of course, is my good friend Scott Walker.

President Obama and the governor of Wisconsin were face-to-face for a
brief moment today when President Obama arrived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
They were supposed to go to Milwaukee`s Master Lock factory together, you
know, it`s kind of a team effort.

No, not really. But Scott Walker -- he got sick. Think about that
Packer fans. Your governor can`t play hurt. Doggone it, the president in
town and he gets the flu.

Of course, probably he should have the flu. Heck, he`s facing a
recall election. He can`t raise enough money to save his political career.
Some of his buddies were up on felony charges. It`s been a rough run.
Plus, he can`t do jobs.

You know what he`s got? He`s got cowarditis.

Walker can`t face the people of his own state because his job record
is really into the tank. You see, Walker gave the president a Brewer`s
jersey, ironically with the number one on it.

But the only thing that Walker is number one at is killing jobs. He
is the number one governor in the country when it comes to killing jobs.

Take a look at private sector job growth in Wisconsin. For the last
seven months of 2011, holy smokes, that sucker is sinking like a stone,
isn`t it? I mean, that`s bad.

Instead of creating jobs, Walker has focused on -- let`s see tax cuts
for the wealthiest Wisconsinites and, of course, the corporations. In
fact, that`s the first thing he did when he got in office.

Scott Walker`s policies, my friends, are killing jobs in the state and
he is suffering for it and so are the people of that state. He`s leading
the charge. He`s the radical governor that has the template to go after
unions.

Here are some numbers that are going in the other direction.
President Obama`s job approval is at 50 percent in the polls. Now, hold it
right there. Think about this -- think about all the super PAC money
that`s out there, all the negative publicity that all the righties are
throwing at President Obama -- heck, he`s going up in the polls.

This graph shows the average of all national polls, and you can see
that the president`s approval rating, where is it going? It`s trending up.
His popularity is going up as the economy improves.

President Obama went to Wisconsin today to basically give everybody a
pep talk, get them out of the doldrums, revive the state because the
governor there is sinking it. He gave a pep talk to the workers at Master
Lock factory.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: Here`s what I want everybody to remember: over the last 23
months, businesses have added nearly 3.7 million new jobs. Manufacturing
is coming back. Companies are starting to bring jobs back. The economy is
getting stronger. The recovery is speeding up.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: That makes Walker sick, doesn`t it?

Of course, the country is only had 23 months of private sector job
growth in a row.

But Wisconsin -- you know, that state is not seeing the same success
under this radical governor who wants to cut the middle class to shreds.
Walker said his crackdown on public sector unions would help the private
sector grow but has done exactly the opposite.

President Obama, you see, he went to Wisconsin today with the
different message. It`s about people. It`s about workers. That`s how the
private sector companies stay strong.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: And today for the first time in 15 years, this plant is
running at full capacity and that is an example of what happens when unions
and employers work together to create good jobs.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: That`s what happens when unions and employers work together
to create good jobs?

This is exactly what Scott Walker does not want to hear. This is what
he`s trying to destroy. He`s modeled his career after Ronald Reagan.
Well, Reaganonomics has failed, but Obamanomics works. I like that term,
Obamanomics.

Twenty-three months of private sector job growth, and a factory with
union workers, where labor been attacked. Hell of a road trip, Mr.
President.

The mindset of America has changed. Don`t you think -- don`t you
think the attitude of the country has changed, that people who care about
the economy, people who are believing in America, they`re not down in the
doldrums the way they were before the midterms of 2010?

One year ago, Wisconsinites were in the streets protesting Scott
Walker`s flat-out war on labor. And a year later, we can see the American
people focusing on what? Income inequality and tax fairness.

Who gets a fair shake in America an anymore? Who gets a fair shake
when you have radical governor that just goes after middle class, goes
after teachers, thinks that teachers -- their pension is too good, their
health care plan is too good?

Scott Walker, he didn`t plan on any of this. The Republican Party
didn`t plan on any of this. This is one of the reasons why they caved on
the payroll tax cut because they had too many things go against them as of
late. Heck, now, they`re trying to tell women what to do with private
parts. That`s how screwed up the Republican Party is right now.

President Obama, you know what he`s done? Be cool. Stay the course.
We got a plan. We`re going to get there.

President Obama`s kind of like that turtle crossing the road with
confidence. There is traffic all over the place.

He knows he`s going to get there. Nobody is going to run him over.
He knows what his plan is. He`s going to get across the road. And he`s
going to get us to better ground.

And he has the stats to believe it -- while all the negativity that is
out there is not where America is right now.

We`re going doing this story later in the show tonight about this
basketball player for the New York Knicks, that`s where America is.
America loves the little guy. America loves a success story. America
roots for the guy who is on the end of the bench.

And the workers have been on the end of the bench with these radical
governors that have attacked unions, that have vilified the middle class,
and now, we`re seeing all these ads driving around Detroit, here comes Mitt
-- I`m for the middle class I`m right there. Yes, right!

The Republican Party, Rick Santorum at the top of the list, has
nothing for middle class workers in this country. Not a thing.

And it just happens ground zero fighting for workers is Wisconsin.
Walker`s numbers are going this way, President Obama`s numbers are going
this way.

Whose car do you want to get in?

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

Tonight`s question: do tax cuts for the rich create jobs? Text A for
yes, text B for no, to 622639. Go to our blog at Ed.MSNBC.com, and leave a
good comment. We`ll bring you results later on in the show.

Joining me tonight is Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Tom, good to have you with us tonight. I appreciate it very much.

I want to go, first -- you were on the tarmac today when the president
got off the airplane.

MAYOR TOM BARRETT (D), MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN: I was on the tarmac.

SCHULTZ: Yes. What did President Obama and Governor Walker have to
say to one another? Because, you know, Governor Walker was really ripping
him a new one the other night at the CPAC convention. How did this go
today?

BARRETT: Well, they were very cordial to each other. And, in fact,
Governor Walker handed him a jersey, Milwaukee Brewers jersey, that had
Obama number one. And I mentioned, it was a great day because, obviously,
he was endorsing the president for reelection based on handing that jersey
with Obama number one. I don`t know if you saw any humor on that.

But you nailed it -- 23 consecutive months of job growth, nationally.
The president has shown real leadership and is moving the economy back in
the right direction. The challenge we have right here in Wisconsin is
under Governor Walker and his policies, at the same time, this nation is
gaining jobs, we`ve had six consecutive months of losing jobs, so we`re
going in the wrong direction.

And the president came in here, he did come in to give us a pep talk
and he came in and talked about importance of in-sourcing, and putting
people back to work, and talk about we got to make more stuff in the
country.

And he`s right on. He`s nailing it absolutely all the way up and down
the line.

SCHULTZ: Was Walker sick today or was he just phoning it in? What`s
going on here? I mean, the president is in town, you got the Master Lock,
a great story of in-sourcing, getting jobs back to America. But he just
couldn`t suck it up and play here.

I mean, what`s going on here?

BARRETT: Well, I tell you what I think is going on. Obviously, he
was cordial to the president. I think that`s important. And I give him
credit for that.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

BARRETT: But to leave there and to go to this neighborhood that is
economically depressed neighborhood five days after he in essence took away
$25 million that could have gone to help people who are hurt by the
mortgage foreclosure crisis in that neighborhood, he didn`t want to go to
that neighborhood, and he sure didn`t want to go to this unionized plant
that was filled with workers in a situation where management and the union
said that they had worked successfully together, because that`s not the
approach he takes. He doesn`t want to take that approach.

And he could have taken that approach here in Wisconsin, he chose not
to take the approach.

SCHULTZ: Mayor --

BARRETT: And it shows what happened.

SCHULTZ: Yes. Did you have a chance to talk to the president about
the mortgage issue and the way that money is coming in the state and how
it`s going to --

BARRETT: I talked to --

SCHULTZ: God ahead.

BARRETT: You bet I did. You bet I did.

I talked to the president I mentioned two things. I mentioned, first,
how important I thought his in-sourcing argument was. I think this is an
important economic and patriotic message to tell the American people. And
afterwards, I told him that we have a situation here in Wisconsin where the
Republican attorney general, a Republican governor have decided that they
don`t want this money that was clearly intended for communities and
individuals that were adversely affected by the mortgage foreclosure
crisis, he doesn`t want them to have the money that`s under his discretion.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

BARRETT: And he wants to put it in the budget problems that he
created himself.

So, I wanted the president to know that, I want to follow up with the
staff. I don`t know what we can do. What I`ve been doing here in
Wisconsin is I`ve taken the issue to the court, the court of public
opinion, to let people know that they have to contact this governor and
this attorney general and say, look, that money should go to communities
and individuals who have been adversely affected by this mortgage
foreclosure crisis.

SCHULTZ: I got to ask you quickly -- what did the president say when
he found out that that money was going to a state budget and not target
forward what it was intended for?

BARRETT: I think -- frankly, I think he was surprised. I said I`ll
follow up with his staff. He doesn`t have the time to deal with that head-
on.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

BARRETT: But I think he was surprised to hear that.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

BARRETT: Because you look at Ohio. Ohio, for example, Republican
attorney general, Republican governor, same labor strife that we have had
here in Wisconsin, they`ve gotten it there. They are putting money into
Cleveland, into Toledo, into those neighborhoods.

Illinois put that, is putting that money in those neighborhoods that
have been adversely affected. Here in Wisconsin, you got a governor who
still doesn`t get it, has decided that it`s better to pit people against
each other, and that`s just wrong.

SCHULTZ: Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett -- thanks so much for joining us
tonight, Tom.

Let`s turn now to Sam Stein, political reporter of "Huffington Post".

Sam, the significance of the president`s trip after all of the fights
that have taken place in the last year in Wisconsin, and now he goes to a
factory that`s telling a story about bringing workers jobs back from China.

What`s the significance of this, do you think?

SAM STEIN, HUFFINGTON POST: Well, you know, I think you laid it out
pretty well in the preamble to this, which is that Wisconsin was for a good
chunk of the summer, ground zero for basically the fight in terms of vision
for the country. You had on the one hand someone who went after public
sector unions, went after collective bargaining rights, slashed budgets,
and then you have the president who -- while he wasn`t steadfastly on the
front lines of the battles -- has outlined a vision where it`s about
investment in the very fabric of the working class fabric of the country.

And so, you know, the contrast couldn`t have been brighter, and the
obviously, the president has really picked it up in recent months with the
American Jobs Act. And now a budget that really does abandon what the
administration was doing from the beginning of 2011 which was sort of
austerity focused. They really pushed that to the side and said, you know
what? Now is not the time to do it, we have a slow but improving economy,
economic recovery, we need to really foster that.

SCHULTZ: Sam Stein, "Huffington Post", you nailed it all. Great to
have you with us tonight.

STEIN: Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ: Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of
the screen, share thoughts on Twitter @EdShow. We want to know what you
think.

President Obama is laying out a vision for how to pump up American
manufacturing even more. That`s next.

And the Senate Republicans, they have to go on record, in opposition
to women`s health care in America. The GOP war on women`s health care
continues. That`s at a new level, we`ll tell you about it.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Coming up: the president sounded like John F. Kennedy today,
talking about his plan to bring back jobs to America. We`ll tell you what
it`s all about.

A Republican Senate candidate`s racist ad has backfired in the polls.
Now, the actress is apologizing.

And even the president is getting in on Lin-sanity that`s sweeping the
nation. Bill Rhoden of "The New York Times" will join us. That transcends
sports, no doubt.

Share thoughts on Twitter using #EdShow. We`ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: Ask yourself what you can do to bring jobs back to your
country. And your country will do everything we can to help you succeed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

Today, President Obama used the success story of Master Lock as a
platform to layout his vision on how to bring more jobs back to America.
He wants to reward companies for creating jobs here.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: So we`ve said, from now on, every multinational company should
have to pay a basic minimum tax. And every penny should go towards
lowering taxes for companies that choose to stay and hire here in the
United States of America.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: OK. Now, the Republicans are always after the president
because he doesn`t have a plan. Well, today, he offered details -- double
the tax deduction for companies making products here in America, help
finance new plants and equipment, invest in community college training
programs, creation of a trade enforcement unit.

And he`s willing to fund it. President Obama`s budget calls for more
investment in manufacturing, more than we`ve seen in 25 years in America.

The president made the case for manufacturing today again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: More and more companies like Master Lock are now in-sourcing,
deciding that if the cost of doing business here isn`t too much different
than the cost of doing business in places like China, then why wouldn`t you
rather do it right here in the United States of America?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Appealing to the patriotism of America.

Let`s turn to Scott Paul, executive director of the Alliance for
American Manufacturing. And Jim Koeberl is with us tonight, the
legislative coordinator for the United Auto Workers in Milwaukee.

Gentlemen, good to have you with us.

Scott, you first. President Obama wants more success stories like
Master Lock. Do you think he`s put out a blue print that can do that?

SCOTT PAUL, ALLIANCE FOR AMERICAN MANUFACTURING: I think it starts to
get us where we need to go. And you covered the high points there, Ed.

We have a change in the tax code. We have a more of an emphasis on a
level playing field for American workers and businesses. We have investing
in a new generation of manufacturing workers, something that`s been
eviscerated literally over the last generation. We have more investment in
infrastructure help get some investment in plant and equipment.

It`s a good plan and the fact that both the president is talking about
this in a way, inviting companies to bring work back, that`s something we
haven`t seen since the early 1980s and also has a budget for it indicates
to me that we can make progress if Congress will do something as well.

SCHULTZ: Well, let`s talk about this investment. The best, you told
me earlier today, the best numbers in 25 years for manufacturing. How?

PAUL: Well, it does it in a couple of ways. First, in the tax code.
He would try to expand a deduction for domestic manufacturing, expand a
research and development tax credit to help with innovation. He would
invest more in workforce.

Our technical college system and shop classes, as you know, Ed, have
been decimated over the last generation.

And also put more of an emphasis on trade enforcement, something that
the last --

SCHULTZ: That`s the key, isn`t it?

PAUL: That`s really the key. We have $295 billion trailed deficit
with China. It was a record last year. We`ve got to get tougher with
them. It`s now the leading impediment to getting jobs back in this
country.

If we have a level playing field as the president said and I know the
workers at Master Lock feel this way, we can compete with anyone. We can
bring jobs back, but we need the level playing field.

SCHULTZ: Jim Koeberl, what was the significance of President Obama`s
trip? What does it mean to those workers that the president cares and he
has a model to do more of it?

JIM KOEBERL, UNITED AUTO WORKERS: It meant hi, Ed. It meant a great
deal to the workers because it shows the commitment they have to making
great products here in the United States and showing, you know, America and
we do have the best workforce and, you know, working right with the
management people there and together with Master Lock, you know, we have a
lot of places like that and the United Auto Workers that work with many
different people.

And, again, you know, it`s that collective bargaining that helps, you
know, keep these jobs in America.

SCHULTZ: What about the crowd today, Jim? Were they, you know,
pretty excited about the president and from the standpoint that they
believe that he is with them? That he is supporting the middle class?
What was the sense of the crowd?

KOEBERL: Very excited. I mean, they were so pumped up and when he
first came in, everybody got glimpse of him coming around the corner there
-- the place erupted and they all get it, too. I mean, every aspect of
everything he talked about, there was just -- everybody was excited and as
he walked out of there, everybody was so excited about having the president
come to their facility and to see what they can do there.

SCHULTZ: In-sourcing, Scott, is what it`s all about. That`s the new
term. But we got a long way to -- I mean, we`ve lost 50,000 factories over
the last 10 years, that got 25 employees or more. That`s a huge number.

And, of course, Chinese representatives were in town earlier this week
meeting with the president. This is a big week for manufacturing.

PAUL: It really is. It`s a pivotal week, we haven`t seen attention
showered on manufacturing like this for a very long time, but we have to
make it real. And there are things that we can do to clean up our own
house and that`s what the president proposes to do in the budget -- to
focus on workers, to focus on investing in our factories, to show that you
can do it with unions, the unions aren`t the impediment, in fact, they make
our country stronger.

But then we also have to make sure we have that level playing field.
That`s where we have progress. We still have that $295 billion trade
deficit.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

PAUL: We need the president to focus on currency, I think he can do
it. We need Speaker Boehner to pass a currency bill in the House of
Representatives.

If we do that, we send a strong signal to the Chinese that it`s no
more business as usual. We want to create those manufacturing jobs. We`re
going to fight for them. And that`s the message that`s going to help win
for the president in the Midwest and any other candidate who chooses to
embrace it. It`s a good message.

SCHULTZ: Scott Paul, Jim Koeberl, great to have both of you,
gentlemen, with us tonight. Thanks so much.

PAUL: Thank you.

SCHULTZ: Bad news for Republican Congressman Peter Hoekstra. He ran
a racist ad and his poll numbers have dropped.

Rick Santorum`s radical turn is riling up the Republican base.

Meanwhile, Mitt Romney is trying to take credit for the auto loan he
opposed. Bob Shrum joins me for the conversation. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

Well, here`s justice for you. A Republican congressman put out a
racist ad and now he has dropped in the polls. Congressman Peter Hoekstra
of Michigan ran this ad during the Super Bowl in his bid to unseat Senator
Debbie Stabenow.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your economy get weak, ours get very good. We
take your jobs. Thank you, Debbie Spend-it-now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Despite outrage from both Democrats and Republicans,
Hoekstra kept running the ad in Michigan until about five days ago. Then,
his campaign finally replaced it.

He also scrubbed the Web site featuring Debbie Stabenow on a Chinese
fan.

Too late, Congressman Hoekstra, your poll numbers have dropped.

Stabenow leads the former congressman 51 percent to 37 percent. Most
people were familiar with the ad -- 45 percent said it made them less
likely to vote for Hoekstra. Only 15 percent said it made them more likely
to vote for the former congressman.

The actress in the Hoekstra ad has now apologized, saying, "I`m deeply
sorry for any pain the character I portrayed brought to my communities."
She actually said a lot more, but that`s the only sentence we used.

One other story, we`ve got more on the story out of Arizona. The
union-busting bill in Arizona has hit a major road block. It is failing to
get enough support from Republicans. The proposed bill would have stripped
collective bargaining rights from government workers in the state.
Republicans control the Arizona legislature, and it was expected to pass
but then, of course, the unions pushed back hard, public got involved, now,
the Senate president says there aren`t enough votes to move the bill
forward.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), WISCONSIN: We just saw last week what
Obamacare looks like. It`s effectively one man, the president of the
United States, who can be himself a health care czar or dictator.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: The Republican war on women is kicking in to yet another
gear. Katrina Vanden Heuvel has the latest.

Romney`s spin today on the auto loan is a jaw dropper. And Rick
Santorum is surging in Michigan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RICK SANTORUM (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: These elite snobs --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: We`ll have the latest with Democratic strategist and
professor Bob Shrum.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lin puts it up. Jeremy Lin from downtown!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Spike Lee and Bill Rhoden of "the New York Times" will talk
about Lin-sanity and why nobody saw it coming.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Republican opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act has
evolved really into an all-out assault on women`s health care in America.
The latest attack could reach the Senate floor as soon as tomorrow.
Majority Leader Harry Reid has agreed to hold a vote on the Blunt
Amendment, which allows any -- any employer to opt out of any insurance
mandate if it goes against their moral convictions, pick and choose. That
is what it sounds like.

Blunt`s legislation grew out of the Republican opposition to a measure
requiring employees with religious affiliations to provide coverage for
birth control. President Obama worked on a deal the -- on this measure,
and his compromise -- look at this, he`s got 66 percent of the American
people are good with the compromise.

But the hard right wingers in the Senate, they are not satisfied.
Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer of California makes it clear the Blunt
Amendment is much more than just birth control.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BARBARA BOXER (D), CALIFORNIA: Republicans would have us go back
to the medical dark ages. Let`s talk about what this Blunt Amendment does.
It would allow anyone to deny any health care service for any reason, even
the most essential life-saving service.

For example, if I believe that prayer should cure all disease, that is
my belief, and I`m an employer, I can deny coverage for any life-saving
intervention. Anyone.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Senator Roy Blunt and his buddies are trying to cannibalize
health care reform. That is what there is. Their ultimate goal is to take
down the framework of the Affordable Care Act. Their main target now is
women.

I`m joined by Katrina Vanden Heuvel, editor, part owner, publisher of
"the Nation." I can`t believe we`re having this conversation.

KATRINA VANDEN HEUVEL, "THE NATION": Yeah.

SCHULTZ: What are the Republicans doing here? They`re going for
broke.

VANDEN HEUVEL: They`re going for broke. They`re doubling down, Ed,
in a way that I don`t understand. I mean, it`s one thing that they have
been fighting over abortion for decades. But this is taking on health care
for men, women, for children.

They are taking on contraception, which has wide support. We always -
- we often talk about the 99 percenters, I`m reminded of the statistic of
the 98 percent of Catholic women who used contraception at some point in
their life, versus the 271 Bishops.

But Barbara Boxer got it right. It`s going back to the dark ages.
It`s not just Blunt, though, Ed. I mean, you look at the four candidates
remaining in this Republican primary, I mean, they, too, are opposing no
cost coverage for cancer screening, or domestic violence as a pre-existing
condition.

SCHULTZ: They are using women as a target to take down President
Obama.

VANDEN HEUVEL: I mean, they are putting a target on the back of women
in order to take down a president they don`t like. And I think it`s a
losing strategy. Women in this country, across the political spectrum,
particularly independent women, they want to have privacy rights. They
want to have liberty. They want to have the protection of their rights
with doctors.

We saw an outpouring of grassroots activism, anger at the way Planned
Parenthood was targeted by the Komen Foundation. Planned Parenthood is in
women`s lives. One in six women and their daughters have been helped by
Planned Parenthood. It is like apple pie.

I think what we need to think ahead to, Ed, is that -- how this could
become a year of the woman in the way 1992 was electorally. Because we`re
seeing a war on women arouse women across the political spectrum. And we
are looking at five women who are challengers from five states which have
never elected women.

We need the outside strategy of movement activism, but we need women
inside, the anti choicers in Congress outnumber pro-choicers. I think that
needs to be looked at closely this year.

SCHULTZ: Is this issue and I -- for lack of a better term -- I have
never liked this term, but I can`t think of anything better right now. Is
this going to engage soccer moms, so to speak, in a way that maybe they
have never been politically engaged before?

VANDEN HEUVEL: Well, they were engaged in 1992. Just take yourself
back to that year, where you had the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas hearings.
You had men sitting in that committee room who didn`t get what women`s
lives were like. Again, we`re not talking here about abortion. We`re
talking about the whole range of health care services.

SCHULTZ: Why are they doing it?

VANDEN HEUVEL: Why are they doing it? I think it`s a party that has
moved so far to the extremist right that you have Rick Santorum saying, in
the case of rape and incest, he wouldn`t even allow abortion. But there
are five -- I just want to mention five women from five states who were
never elected.

Elizabeth Warren is one. Tammy Baldwin from Wisconsin, Mazie Hirono
from Hawaii, Susan Bysiewicz from Connecticut and Shelley Berkley from
Nevada.

If this is a year to have women`s voices, critical mass heard, it`s a
YHY, Women Historic Year. And the Republicans are going to make it the
overreach. You`ve seen it on labor rights. You`re now seeing on it
women`s issues.

SCHULTZ: I don`t want you to forget Heidi Heitkamp from North Dakota,
the former attorney general.

VANDEN HEUVEL: That`s right.

SCHULTZ: She was the tobacco lawsuit. She`s a fabulous legal mind
and would be great in the Senate.

Here is Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. He tried to make the fight
about economics today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: You should not be forced to buy
insurance that goes against your religious principles. But I would
actually go one step further. Obama-care really forces you to buy
insurance that`s against your economic freedom.

Should a 75 year old woman be forced to buy insurance that has
pregnancy coverage? Should a 23-year-old woman who has had her tubes tied
and has four children be forced to buy pregnancy coverage?

So there is an economic freedom issue. There`s a religious freedom
issue. But this goes to the heart of Obama-care and why so many of us have
been opposed to Obama-care.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: What do you think?

VANDEN HEUVEL: First of all, I think they are using women and their
war on women to take down Obama-care. But they also forget the principled
lessons of the founding father and the separation of church and state. You
begin to go down this route, which is what the Blunt Amendment is, you are
in danger of dismantling the very rights and principles this country is
founded on.

SCHULTZ: But Rand is kind of a loose cannon. He connected it all.
This has not been about religious freedom. This has been all about going
after what they call Obama-care, the Affordable Health Care Act. This is
about taking down the president and stopping the agenda.

VANDEN HEUVEL: But it`s also about economic rights. We`ve talked
about this. I mean, if you`re a janitor, a woman janitor working in a
religious institution, or hospital, or -- you have to have the right to be
able to buy affordable birth control.

SCHULTZ: And they --

VANDEN HEUVEL: And they want to make that out of your reach. This is
not what America is about. And I think this overreach is going to damage
them.

SCHULTZ: Great to have you with us tonight. Thank you so much.

Rick Santorum is surging to the top of the Republican field by
adopting what I think is very harsh rhetoric, and really the absolute
tactics. Mitt Romney is struggling to keep up. Bob Shrum in the
discussion with me next. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SANTORUM: Don`t you see how they see you? How they look down their
nose at the average Americans? These elite snobs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Elite snobs. Wage earners in America are elite snobs. Rick
Santorum is really going radical. He is changing his tactics in a markedly
hard right turn. Elite snobs rhetoric, that was not what I heard when I
was covering Santorum in Iowa. This guy has changed.

He`s gone very absolute, trying to appeal to the extremist right wing
voters. Santorum`s goal, I guess, is to create a strict contrast between
him and Mitt Romney. And you know what? It`s working.

He has Romney on the ropes. Mitt is scrambling to recover. This
morning, Romney tried to repair the damage from a 2008 op-ed he wrote
railing against President Obama, the administration`s auto loan. The auto
loan worked. The American car companies are back at it.

And Romney is left with egg on his face, struggling to gain traction
in Michigan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROMNEY: I made the very clear point, which is the companies should
have gone through managed bankruptcy. Finally, the Obama administration
agreed. I was right. They needed to go through bankruptcy. If as part of
that process, they needed financial help to get out of bankruptcy, a bridge
loan or guarantees for their sales of cars and so forth, I said the
government should be there to provide that.

They wasted a lot of money. And they ended up giving the companies to
the UAW. Look, I don`t imagine that anyone could think that I had any
interest other than to see the companies thrive and survive.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: This is Romney`s problem. He`s not definitive. He`s not
absolute. And he`s far from consistent. He can`t give the Republican
primary voters exactly what they want. But this evening, we have some
breaking news that could help Romney in his campaign in Michigan.

NBC News confirms the Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will endorse Mitt
Romney tomorrow. Let`s turn to Bob Shrum, Democratic strategist and
professor at NYU. I want to show you this live shot. This is Rick
Santorum in Fargo, North Dakota, speaking live.

He just said that he wants to take state and federal money out of
education. Now, I didn`t know he was going to say this. My analysis is
this guy is going big time radical.

Bob, what is his strategy? What is happening here?

BOB SHRUM, NEW YORK UNIVERSITY PROFESSOR: That -- that is insane.
That is not just radical. It`s insane. Anybody who is in college, anybody
who wants their kid to go to college, anybody who wants their kids to have
good science programs doesn`t want all state and federal money out of
education.

That basically means that you would have an education system that was
entirely determined by the wealth of the local neighborhood. It also means
that millions of kids couldn`t go to college.

SCHULTZ: Why is he doing better? I mean, his rhetoric has definitely
gone hard right, the things that he`s saying out there. He`s hitting hard
on the social issues.

Last -- a week ago Tuesday, things turned around for Santorum. Now of
course he`s leading in Michigan. What is happening in.

SHRUM: Two thing. First of all, he is appealing to the hard right.
There are a lot of hard right people in Michigan. Secondly, they don`t
like Romney. There is an in authenticity about Romney, an unreliability
about Romney that Republicans don`t like.

You know, you showed that auto industry stuff at the beginning of this
segment. He said in the "New York Times" in 2008 if the auto industry
accepts federal money, they can kiss themselves goodbye; they are gone;
they are out of business.

He can`t get around that. But what he does is he lies with
breathtaking regularity. Ironically, his new tactic against Santorum is
going to be to try to outspend him by millions of dollars in Michigan and
claim he`s not a conservative. That really turns the truth on its head.

SCHULTZ: Is a Rick Snyder endorsement in Michigan going to help him
at all?

SHRUM: It might help him a little bit. Look, Romney has all the
endorsements. He has all the money. Nonetheless, he struggles and
struggles and struggles to just maintain his position. At this point in
2000, at this point in 2004, the two obvious nominees, Bush and then Kerry,
were supported by 60, 65, 70 percent of their parties. Romney is still
stuck at 25 percent, even though all the smart money says he`s going to be
the nominee.

SCHULTZ: What if he doesn`t win Michigan?

SHRUM: I think it`s all up in the air.

SCHULTZ: Really? I mean, it shouldn`t -- it wasn`t supposed to be
this hard for Romney.

SHRUM: Look, I`ve always thought -- and I have said he is the
inevitable nominee. If he loses Michigan, I think it`s all up in the air.
Right now, he has a 29 to one advantage in what he`s spending on the air
and with his super PAC in Michigan. If he loses under these circumstances,
in his so-called home state -- he`s like George H.W. Bush, he has a lot of
home states -- he`s in deep trouble.

SCHULTZ: Are we seeing the conservatives coalescing behind Santorum?
You look, he has closed the gap in Arizona. He`s closed the gap in
Michigan. He`s got more wins than anybody else right now. What are we
seeing here?

SHRUM: I think we`re seeing conservatives outside the south coalesce
around Santorum. I think you still see real Gingrich support in places
like Georgia and North Carolina. Now whether that is still there on Super
Tuesday or whether people keep moving towards Santorum, I don`t know.

This is a big deal for Romney. He needs to win Michigan. He needs to
win it convincingly, win Arizona. Then I think he will be OK on Super
Tuesday. He`ll go on to the nomination. Although he has been hurt very
badly in this process. He`s now minus 24 in terms of approval, disapproval
with independent and swing voters.

SCHULTZ: Bob Shrum, always a pleasure. Thank you so much.

SHRUM: Thank you, Ed.

SCHULTZ: The Lin-sanity continues. Jeremy Lin is the biggest story
in sports. But he`s also a great American story. I`ll talk with William
Rhoden of the "New York Times" about Jeremy Lin`s impact.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lin puts it up, bang. Jeremy Lin from downtown.
The Knicks take the lead.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Guy is playing like he has ice in his veins. Nothing
affects him at all. Amazing story, New York Knicks Guard Jeremy Lin, it
continue. He hit the game-winning shot last night. Many of the skeptics
are now convinced.

NBA legend Reggie Miller Tweeted, "OK, I give in. He`s legit."

Wow. Jeremy Lin was unknown two weeks ago. Now he`s the hottest
story in America, hottest name in New York for sure. It`s only six games.
But his achievements are impressive. Only five other players in history
have done what this guy has done in six consecutive games.

You may have heard some of them, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley,
Isiah Thomas. Jeremy Lin represents I think what people in this country
love. He`s the under dog who has made the most of his opportunities. But
why did his talents go unnoticed until now?

We asked one of the world`s biggest Knicks fans, Spike Lee. Spike was
in the building today and our producers caught up with him.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SPIKE LEE, PRODUCER: He`s not -- doesn`t look that physical, Asian
American -- I mean, Taiwanese American, played at Harvard. Those things
don`t help.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: We`re joined tonight by William Rhoden, sports columnist for
"the New York Times." Great to have you with us. What do you make of
this?

WILLIAM C. RHODEN, "NEW YORK TIMES": Let`s get all the positive stuff
out of the way first. OK. It`s a great story. It really is a great
story. I mean, My daughter is 21, 22 years old. There are a lot of kids
that age who are bouncing around. They`re trying to find themselves, not
finding the right jobs or -- and what Jeremy is doing is finding -- he gets
drafted, gets cut.

He comes back, D league, comes here. Finally, he kind of finds his
legs and gets an opportunity and he makes the most of it. And I think that
is what this country -- that is what life is about. You work hard. You
work hard. You go through dips. And then when you finally get that shot,
you make the most of the shot.

So I think that is what I think resonates.

SCHULTZ: What about what Spike said? He`s an Asian American. He
doesn`t fit the mold of an NBA player. Does that play into it?

RHODEN: I think a little bit. I mean, we like stuff that is
different. Now, for three decades, the NBA has been dominated by African
American players, all right, which is pretty incredible in itself. That is
another show. So it`s nice, particularly in the city like New York, that
is so diverse, to have someone different who -- and by the way who can
play.

SCHULTZ: He can play.

RHODEN: He can play. But I think, like you said -- again, the
positives. Now we`re talking about a relatively short sample.

SCHULTZ: Your daughter`s boyfriend played with Lin at Harvard.

RHODEN: Yeah.

SCHULTZ: Right, OK. How could the NBA miss this guy?

RHODEN: Well, the NBA misses a lot of guys. Number one, that happens
a lot of times in a lot of sports. Sometimes you miss out on guys.
Remember, Ed, sometimes people just aren`t ready. We all develop
differently. And sometimes systems are different.

SCHULTZ: I got to ask you this, being an old sports guy; six games --
tonight`s game number seven that this guy`s been in the lineup. If this is
in Oklahoma City, is this the same story?

RHODEN: No, come on, this is New York. And the whole -- no, of
course not.

SCHULTZ: And the Knicks need a positive story.

RHODEN: We all -- the Knicks -- come on, the Knicks need a tremendous
story. But if this is Oklahoma City, it`s a good story. But I think that
you take it for what it is, OK? But I think the key thing now is that
we`re talking about a short sample.

What I don`t want to happen is don`t -- now kind of Carmelo Anthony
has kind of been turned in the potential villain in all this, if he comes
back. But listen, Carmelo Anthony has been averaging 22 points a game for
nine-year career. I mean, let`s be -- that is a tremendous accomplishment.

SCHULTZ: All right, boxer Floyd Mayweather Tweeted this yesterday:
"Jeremy Lin is a good player, but all the hype is because he`s Asian.
Black players do what he does every night and don`t get the same praise."
Does he have a point?

RHODEN: Yeah.

SCHULTZ: You said we like stuff that is different.

RHODEN: That is different. I think that -- sometimes I think what
frustrates particularly African Americans is the whole idea of the double
standard. And it`s true. African Americans have been dominating in the
NBA for three decades. And I think the frustration is that, like I said,
I`ve heard talk now that, well, would you take Jeremy Lin or Chris Paul?
And I`m like, well, wait a minute, these guys have been great for a long
period of time.

I`m not talking seven games or even 50 games.

SCHULTZ: But we`re saying the skills are there. Now it`s about
longevity.

RHODEN: Yes, that is what this whole business -- our business,
everything is about can you do it day in, day out.

SCHULTZ: I think you and I got to go to a Knicks game and figure this
thing out. What do you think?

RHODEN: I would love to do it. In fact, let`s go now!

RHODEN: Bill Rhoden, "New York Times," great to have you with us.
Thank you so much. That`s THE ED SHOW. I`m Ed Schultz. You can listen to
me on Sirius XM Channel 127, Monday through Friday, 12:00 to 3:00 PM.
Follow me on Twitter @EdShow, and like THE ED SHOW on Facebook.

Rachel, did you play basketball?

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

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