Skip navigation

The Ed Show for Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Read the transcript to the Wednesday show

  Most Popular
Most viewed

Guests: David Corn, Cyndi Lauper, John Lewis, Bob Shrum, Lena Taylor, Charles Hample,
Cecile Richards

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

President Obama is the first president in American history to support
equal marriage rights for every American and Republicans are attacking him
in full force.

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


to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get

SCHULTZ (voice-over): The president makes history standing up for
equality. Mitt Romney is sticking with inequality.

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`m in favor of traditional
marriage between a man and a woman, and I don`t favor civil union or gay

SCHULTZ: Tonight, marriage equality activist John Lewis on today`s
historic statement by the president, David Corn on how it all unfolded
behind the scenes, and Bob Shrum on what it all means politically for the
president and Mitt Romney.

The countdown is officially on for the Walker recall.

MAYOR TOM BARRETT (D), MILWAUKEE: We cannot fix Wisconsin as long as
Scott Walker is the governor of this state.

SCHULTZ: Debates have been announced, Democrats are uniting and last
night`s final tally is looking bad for Scott Walker.

Michele Bachmann drops a dual citizenship bombshell.

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: I wish the American media
would take a great look at the views of the people in Congress and find
out, are they pro-America or anti-America.

SCHULTZ: Tonight, an ED SHOW expose.

BACHMANN: I think people would love to see an expose like that.


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

President Obama`s historic announcement today is also a watershed
moment in this 2012 election cycle. The political ramifications, I think,
are huge. President Obama is now the first sitting U.S. president to
endorse marriage equality.


OBAMA: Over the course of several years, as I talked to friends and
family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in
incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who
are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or
marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf, and yet feel
constrained -- even now that "don`t ask, don`t tell" is gone -- because
they`re not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point,
I`ve just concluded that, for me personally, it is important for me to go
ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get


SCHULTZ: President Obama says his position on marriage equality has
evolved. The politics of gay rights during this election year has also

Eighteen years ago, President Bill Clinton signed the Defense of
Marriage Act, opposing government recognition of same-sex marriages. In
2004, President Bush kicked off his re-election campaign, calling for an
amendment to the United States Constitution, making it illegal to marry
someone of the same gender.


GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Today, I call upon the
Congress to promptly pass and to send to the states for ratification an
amendment to our Constitution defining and protecting marriage as the union
of a man and woman, as husband and wife.


SCHULTZ: Even Barack Obama called marriage the union between a man
and a woman during the 2008 presidential campaign. He announced support
for civil unions. He supported the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act.
He also pushed for the repeal of "don`t ask, don`t tell".

But President Obama did not openly support marriage equality until
today. Last Sunday on "Meet the Press," Vice President Joe Biden got the
ball rolling.


of the United States of America. The president sets the policy. I am
absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marry men, women marrying
women, and heterosexual men and women marrying one another, are entitled to
the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And
quite frankly, I don`t see much of a distinction beyond that.


SCHULTZ: The timing of the president`s announcement comes on the
heels of an overwhelming defeat for marriage equality in the state of North
Carolina. Last night, the state added a same-sex marriage ban to its
Constitution by a vote of 61 to 39 percent. North Carolina is, count it,
30th state in the nation with legislation to prohibit marriage equality.
Eleven of those states passed those bans during the 2004 election.

Mitt Romney understands the weight of the moment. He addressed the
president`s announcement today.


ROMNEY: My view is that marriage itself is a relationship between a
man and a woman, and that`s my own preference. I know other people have
differing views. This is a very tender and sensitive topic, as are many
social issues. But I have the same view that I`ve had since -- well, since
running for office.


SCHULTZ: Two real different positions, two distinctly different
positions in this campaign. Maybe further apart than ever before in this
campaign. This is a major political opportunity for both parties and both

But polls show the trend is on President Obama`s side. In a new
Gallup poll, half the country supports legal same-sex marriage. 48 percent
are opposed. Looking at an average of all national polls on marriage
equality, Mitt Romney`s position is headed in the wrong direction. But
Mitt Romney still needs to win over conservative Republicans and they are
firmly on the red line. Democrats and independents are overwhelmingly
support marriage equality, 74 percent of Republicans oppose same-sex

America is evolving on this issue, no doubt, just as President Obama
is. This is not the same country it was when Bill Clinton passed the
Defense of Marriage Act. This is not the same country it was when John
Kerry shared President George W. Bush`s position on same-sex marriage in

The country now is faced with a 2012 president who says all citizens
have the right to be married, regardless of sexual orientation. We`ll see
how it plays out in November.

But for Mitt Romney, it is also a very big day. All of those social
conservatives who have been on the fence and not sure about Mitt Romney, he
made a lot of friends today with the position taken by President Obama.

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

Tonight`s question, do you agree with President Obama`s endorsement
of same-sex marriage? Text "A" for yes, text "b" for no, to 622639. And
you can always go to our blog at and leave a comment and we
encourage you to do that. We`ll bring you the results of the poll later on
in the show.

Tonight, I am joined by Cyndi Lauper, Grammy Award-winning former and
co-founder of the True Colors Fund, which raises awareness about the LBGT
homelessness in America. She`s joining us from George Washington
University, where she is receiving an award for her work with the True
Colors Fund.

I`m also joined tonight by John Lewis. He is the legal director for
Marriage Equality USA. John and his husband were two of the plaintiffs in
the original California case to make marriage equality a reality.

Great to have both of you with us tonight.

Cyndi, you first. What was your reaction to President Obama`s
announcement today? And how big of a political moment is this in America?

been prouder to be an American, because I believe in equality. I believe
in separation of church and state.

I`m glad to live in a country where I don`t have to have somebody
else`s religion put upon me, and I feel that -- gay people pay taxes and
they pay just as much taxes if not more than heterosexual married people.
And they have just as much right to get right and be miserable just like
everybody else.

And I`m very happy that President Obama came forth and said that.
I`m so proud of our president. He`s brave -- and our vice president.

I thought it was a step in the right direction, especially for the
homeless LGBT youths that have been kicked out of their homes by their
folks, by their families, and disenfranchised because it makes them less
invisible. And I came here tonight to give them a voice, because they
don`t have one.

So I`ve felt hopeful and I`m proud of them. I`m proud of them.

SCHULTZ: An emotional moment, no doubt about it. An emotional
moment for many Americans tonight.

John, did the president satisfy your concerns over this position and
the political ramifications of it. Your thoughts?

JOHN LEWIS, MARRIAGE EQUALITY USA: Yes. Well, I am both thrilled
and just deeply moved by the president`s words today. My husband, Stuart
and I, this year have been together for 25 years, as a loving and committed
couple. We`ve been legally married in the state of California for four of
those years.

And it just means the world to us, and to many, many, many same-sex
couples and lesbian and gay people nationwide that the president of the
United States is now standing up for the full freedom to marry for every
single American.

SCHULTZ: John, do you think this is what the American people want?

LEWIS: Well, I think, politically speaking, it`s something very
important to look at. We always do, when we evaluate whether to re-elect
somebody, is we look at whether they fulfilled their campaign promises.
And four years ago, the president promised to be a fierce advocate for
lesbian and gay people. Today, he truly became one.

SCHULTZ: Cyndi, what kind of an impact is this going to have on
young people in this election cycle? In 2008, President Obama was able to
really inspire the younger generation to get involved. Will this be one of
those moments in your opinion?

LEWIS: Absolutely. President Obama --

LAUPER: I think this is a big, big, one, yes.

SCHULTZ: OK, go ahead, Cyndi.

LAUPER: No, go ahead.

LEWIS: Sorry. President Obama said two words over and over four
years ago. Hope and change. His words today bring enormous home to gay
and lesbian people and it represents change. Things are never going to be
the same after today.

SCHULTZ: Cyndi, your thoughts.

LAUPER: That`s right. And every time now I see President Obama, I
remember Dr. King`s words. And I`ll always remember that speech growing
up. That the arc of history is long, but it bends towards justice. And
eventually, eventually if everyone stands up and is counted, we will have
equality in a country that boasts freedom for all.

SCHULTZ: And, Cyndi, do you think that this is the civil rights
issue of our time?

LAUPER: Yes. I`ve seen -- I grew up in a lot of them. I grew up in
the civil rights for African-Americans. I marched in the woman`s movement.
And I know that it takes everybody. It takes everybody to stand up. Gay
people, straight people, white people, black people, Spanish people,
everybody has to stand up and say, hey, enough is enough.

You know, and people need to be free.


John, I want to ask you about the financial aspect of this. The gay
community in America is very powerful politically and also financially.
How much do you think that weighed in on President Obama`s, if at all, on
his decision?

LEWIS: Well, I think something that`s tremendously powerful about
his statement today is, he spoke from the heart. And he really stood up
for what he knew was right, perhaps regardless of the political

And I think the irony of it is, and we all know this as regular
people, that when we do what`s right, when we no longer have to equivocate,
it gives us tremendous power in our voice. And I think he has done a very
powerful thing, personally and politically today.

SCHULTZ: Cyndi Lauper, John Lewis, great to have you on THE ED SHOW
tonight. Thanks for your reaction for this historical move and this
historical moment. No doubt about it.

Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the
screen. Share your thoughts on Twitter @EdShow. We want to know what you

President Obama`s decision has major political implications for both
the president and his opponent. David Corn and Bob Shrum will join me on

And Republican budget cuts have taken a huge toll on public
education. I can`t get off this story. It`s amazing what`s happening in
America. One school district is on the verge of eliminating programs from
art to sports. A teacher from the district has stepped forward and has
agreed to talk with us tonight about this dire situation in Pennsylvania.
I think retails to your school district too.

We`re right back.


SCHULTZ: Coming up, the president`s announcement on marriage
equality is already firing up conservatives. I`ll ask Bob Shrum and David
Corn what it all means for November, if anything.

The countdown to recall is on. Tom Barrett and Scott Walker are
already trading blows. We will have all the big developments from
Wisconsin, coming up later in the program.

And Mitt Romney just can`t get his story straight on anything. Wait
until you hear what he told Hannity last night.

Share your thoughts on Twitter using the #EdShow.

We`re coming right back.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

Here`s where I`m at. This is how I see it. President Obama really
did three things today. I think he showed leadership. It was a gutsy
call. He fired up a progressive base, the younger base. But he also
handed Mitt Romney, in my opinion, a real political gift, because you see,
religious conservatives who have reservations about Mitt Romney now have
more reason than ever to support him because they can`t substantiate
President Obama`s position.

Here`s Romney today.


ROMNEY: I have the same view on marriage that I had when I was
governor, and that I`ve expressed many times. I believe marriage is a
relationship between a man and a woman. States are able to make decisions
with regards to domestic partnership benefits, such as hospital visitation
rights, benefits and so forth of various kinds can be determined state by

But my view is that marriage itself is a relationship between a man
and a woman and that`s my own preference. I know other people have
differing views. This is a very tender and sensitive topic, as are many
social issues. But I have the same view that I`ve had since -- well, since
running for office.


SCHULTZ: Earlier in the day, Romney said, "I do not favor marriage
between people of the same gender and I don`t favor civil unions if they
are identical to marriage. My view is that domestic partnership benefits,
hospital visitation rights, and the like are appropriate but the others are

Romney also supports a constitutional amendment defining marriage
between a man and a woman.

The demographics of people favoring gay marriage have generally
turned in President Obama`s favor. Overall, 53 percent of Americans
support marriage equality, including 59 percent of independents. Younger
voters overwhelmingly support it while older voters do not.

Let`s turn to Bob Shrum, Democratic strategist and professor at New
York University, and David Corn, D.C. bureau chief for "Mother Jones"
magazine, columnist for, and author of the new book

Gentleman, great to have you with us tonight.


DAVID CORN, MOTHER JONES: Great to be here.

SCHULTZ: Bob, let me ask you, this is another reason for social
conservatives not to want Obama, no matter how much they like Mitt Romney.
Your thoughts?

SHRUM: They weren`t beginning to vote for Obama anyway.

Look, the fact of the matter is that these folks -- anybody for whom
this is a single litmus test issue that`s going to decide their vote,
probably isn`t comfortable with having an African-American president in the
first place. And they weren`t going to vote for Obama.

I think your demographics are exactly right. We`ve come a long way
since even 2004, when actually I wrote Senator Kerry`s statement opposing a
constitutional amendment to ban equality. That was used in Ohio as a lever
to turn out voters on the religious right. Kerry lost the state and lost
the presidency.

I think we`re in a completely different world now. And if you listen
to the tone of Romney there, he was trying to be very careful. He wants
the advantage of having these people on the right with him, but he also is
saying, look, I`m reasonable, I believe in hospital visitation -- you know,
separate but equal.

SCHULTZ: I mean, religious zealots are going to go after him big
time on this. It fires them up in a sense that they haven`t been fired up
before. It gives them a reason and they`re going to raise big money off of

David, the president was reportedly prepared to announce his new
position on this situation, but was searching for the right time. Explain
how we got there. What do you know?

CORN: Well, I`ve talked to a few people at the White House and
Obama`s inner circles. And what they say is for months he`s been thinking
about this, and they often repeat to me over and over again that he`s been
talking to Mrs. Obama about it. That comes up again and again in these

And that he also saw the same-sex parents of some friends of Sasha
and Malia`s and he had more or less resolved one way or another to raise
this issue and address it prior to the convention later this summer, where
there may or may not be a fight over a platform in the Democratic -- a
fight over a plank in the Democratic platform. But that Joe Biden`s
comments on "Meet the Press" on Sunday forced the issue. You know, despite
what some people say or believe, this wasn`t a planned orchestration, with
having Biden come out and set up a trial balloon --

SCHULTZ: They were winging it?

CORN: They were kind of winging it in a way. The president was
moving in this direction. No doubt Biden knew that. No doubt Arne Duncan
and others around him knew that, so they felt freer to talk about this,
realizing it wouldn`t create too much of a problem.

But once Biden got out there, one White House Obama adviser told me,
it got to the point where he just didn`t want the confusion anymore. He
was heading in this direction. The issue had been joined Biden. And so he
decided to do it now.

SCHULTZ: OK. So, Bob, is there a campaign financing component to
this? I mean, the gay community in this country is very strong,
politically strong, and they were ready for this. And they were ready to
hold President Obama`s feet to the fire -- to the point where they weren`t
going financially support him, which he needs them for Citizens United.
Take us down that road.

SHRUM: Well, I think they were -- most major gay givers were giving
money to the president`s campaign, but were not heavily in trying to
counter Rove and the Republican super PACs. I think that will change now.

But it`s not just gays. It`s a lot of pretty well-off, wealthy
progressives who, I think, seeing what the president did today, ought to
get into this, and will get into this.

SCHULTZ: Ending discrimination?

SHRUM: Yes, look. I`ve been in this deal since the 1970s, when my
friend David Metzler (ph) first came out of the closet. And in 1980, I was
there when Senator Kennedy had to force a gay rights, a simple gay rights
plank into the Democratic platform.

I think that this year, the Democratic Party will endorse same-sex
marriage, marriage equality in its platform and I think you`re going to see
a lot of people around the country admire what the president did, support
the president, and not let Karl Rove and these guys who are taking
advantage of Citizens United create a really difficult situation.

SCHULTZ: Let`s get reaction from the right. Here`s Tony Perkins
earlier today from the Family Research Council.


supports same-sex marriage goes a long way in addressing the intensity
issue that Mitt Romney was facing with social conservatives.


SCHULTZ: David corn, your reaction to that. What about it?

CORN: Well, listen, something has to be done on the Republican side
to juice up enthusiastic from Mitt Romney, which has --

SCHULTZ: Well, President Obama did that.

CORN: Yes, he did do that.

And I`m of the view that as much as I support this from a policy
wise, I think the politics might be mixed. I mean I understand what Bob
and others are saying about creating or energizing the youth vote and where
independents are on this issue. But at the same time, I think, you know,
look at what happened in North Carolina, just yesterday, and talking to
people close to Obama, it`s clear to me that they kind of -- that they did
not see a clear, obvious, political gain in this move.

You know, it may work to their benefit, maybe by November it will,
but it may not. And that ended up not being the primary calculation in
what the president did, because I think it`s very hard to sort out what
impact this will have in those few states that you and I are going to be
focusing on between now and November.

SCHULTZ: Bob Shrum, David Corn, great to have you with us on THE ED
SHOW tonight. Thanks so much.

Wisconsinites are fired up and ready to go, 27 days before Governor
Scott Walker`s recall election, Lena Taylor joins me with the latest.

Mitt Romney claims his party is pro-woman. Really? The GOP policies
tell a much different story. Cecile Richards, president for Planned
Parenthood, will join me.

Stay with us. We`re right back.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

We are just 27 days away from the June 5th recall election of
Governor Scott Walker in Wisconsin, and Democrats, well, they seem to be
fired up and ready to go. Walker has agreed to participate in two
televised debates with his the Democratic challenger, who won last night,
Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee.

Here`s part of Barrett`s full-throttled case against Scott Walker.


BARRETT: Because Scott Walker chose to launch his ideological civil
war, this state has seen a larger job loss than any state in this country.
Scott Walker, instead of saying home in Wisconsin and focusing on creating
jobs here has decided that he is going to be a rock star -- a rock star to
the far right in this nation.

And do we want a governor who has to have a legal defense fund? A
criminal defense fund? We do not want that in this state.


SCHULTZ: Maybe the most animated, Mr. Barrett has ever been. The
main Democratic challenger against him was Kathleen Falk, endorsed Barrett
immediately and labor has gotten behind Mayor Barrett as well.

Yesterday`s primary turnout was the highest since 1952, and anti-
Walker votes outnumbered pro-walker votes by 55,000. However, no one
expected Walker`s Republican primary opponent to win in an upset. So many
Republicans may have just stayed home. We`ll have to see.

Democrats shouldn`t get too complacent over all of these numbers. In
the actual recall election, turnout on both sides is expected to be far

Let`s turn to Wisconsin State Senator Lena Taylor, who has been on the
front lines since day one. She was one of the Wisconsin 14 that left the
state that pretty much got the ball rolling. You know what`s interesting
about all of this, Lena, and great to have you with us tonight, is that
collective bargaining --


SCHULTZ: You bet. Collective bargaining does not poll very well in
Wisconsin. And the labor-favored candidate did not win last night. How do
you break that all down? What does it mean?

TAYLOR: Well, first of all, Ed, this is about not just collective
bargaining, so to say, it`s about whether or not people should have the
opportunity to be at the table, whether or not Wisconsin values will be
respected, whether or not you believe that government should be
transparent, and your elected official should be honest, and that you can
depend on them, that they will not sell us out and do pay for play, that
they won`t do so many things that would ultimately make you not believe or
trust government, or to trust that person who is in the gubernatorial seat.

So it`s about more than that. So even though Kathleen, she did --
she`s a wonderful person. She did, you know, a great job in her race. It
was about more than that for people. You have individuals who are
concerned about the war on women. They`re concerned about the rollback on
civil rights and justice issues. So this is about way more than that.

SCHULTZ: Yes, much broader than what Scott Walker likes to make it
appear to be in the media. He continually complains about union bosses
from around the country trying to oust him, when they have spent a fraction
of the money that he has rolled in from all over the country. Now, this
started 15 months ago. This is of historical political proportion for this

It`s only the third recall. And it`s the second one in contemporary
time. Does that motivate voters to get out? I mean, we`re now going to
get it boiled down to who gets out the vote. Isn`t that what it`s all

TAYLOR: That`s exactly what it`s about. But you know, we`re really
excited. Because we didn`t even do anything to get the vote out yesterday.
We actually pulled in the Democratic party staff to come in and be trained
yesterday. There was no get out the vote effort.

SCHULTZ: So this was organic.

TAYLOR: This was pure momentum.

SCHULTZ: So this was sheer momentum and organic.

TAYLOR: That`s it.

SCHULTZ: OK. So moving forward, you`re going to be outspent --

TAYLOR: But wait a minute.

SCHULTZ: Go ahead.

TAYLOR: But wait a minute, Ed. You`ve got to know that people were
standing in line yesterday to vote. So this is momentum and people were
standing in line. This is pure, we want to pick the person who`s going to
be able to be number one on the kickball team to kick Scott Walker out.
That`s all this was, yesterday, momentum. Now we`re going to get our
ground game.

SCHULTZ: OK. Now these debates, how important are they? Barrett
wanted four, Walker agreed to two. How in the heck is Walker going to go
into a debate with a horrible jobs record? It`s all about the numbers, no
question about that. Is this going to be a defining moment?

TAYLOR: Well, he asked for two instead of four because he knows he`s
not a good debater. I did 25 dual appearances with him when we ran for
county executive and he`s not very good in that regard. He also knows that
he wants to make it seem like Milwaukee is horrible and Tom Barrett is the
fault for everything being done in Milwaukee.

Let`s be clear. He`s only been out of Milwaukee, that being Governor
Walker -- has only been out of Milwaukee for this period of time that he`s
destroyed our state and taken us backwards. The other time, he was the
county executive of Milwaukee County.

So anything that he`s saying is bad, quote unquote, about what hasn`t
been done in Milwaukee County really also is a true example of his lack of
leadership when he was the county executive.

SCHULTZ: All right.

TAYLOR: So I hope that people will remember that.

SCHULTZ: And we will see if the shoe drops legally before election
day. You never know. He`s got a legal defense fund.

TAYLOR: Oh, right. Meet John Doe.

SCHULTZ: Well, we have spent a lot of time covering this. And now
we`re in the -- I guess turning the hourglass here, going to June 5th. It
is the template against Citizens United. It is the people against the
corporate money, the special interests money.

The country is watching Wisconsin. It`s going to be a very
interesting month. Obviously, we will be intensely following this story.
Wisconsin State Senator Lena Taylor, always great to have you with us.

TAYLOR: Thank you.

SCHULTZ: There`s a lot more coming up in the next half hour of THE ED
SHOW. Stay right here.


Republicans as being anything other than extraordinarily pro-woman, that
kind of effort is totally missing the mark.


SCHULTZ: Mitt Romney tries to spin the Republican war on women. But
we`re not letting him get away with it. Cecile Richards of Planned
Parenthood is here.

Republican budget cuts in Pennsylvania are devastating public schools.
Tonight, a Pennsylvania teacher is here and he`s taking a stand.

And Michele Bachmann`s European socialist roots are revealed.


REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: Usually we associate with
people who have similar ideas to us.


SCHULTZ: Tonight, an ED SHOW expose.


BACHMANN: The news media should do a penetrating expose and take a
look. I wish they would.



SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW. I want to alert you tonight
that this is not a story about a third world country that sometimes has a
hard time getting resources to do what it fundamentally should do for its
people. This is a story about the United States of America, happening in
our country, in many states across this country.

As we`ve been reporting, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett`s nearly
one billion dollars of cuts to public education has left schools scrambling
just to keep the doors open. York City School District has until June 30th
to close a budget shortfall that now stands at 29 million dollars. School
officials are seriously considering a range of options to close the gap,
such as requiring staff to work fewer hours during the summer, imposing a
17 percent property tax increase, and closing the district`s two middle
schools, combining those grades with the elementary school.

Fifty teachers have already been laid off and there will be more. The
district is also can considering eliminating programs and positions like
guidance counselors, art programs, gym, choir, band, kindergarten classes,
and all -- not some, but all sports.

Does that sound like America to you? With the budget deadline
approaching, students and parents are fighting back.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Parents and students coming together to try and
make a difference, starting a petition they plan to send all the way to the
governor`s office.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So far just today, I have about myself -- there
are other students going around helping. I have about almost six pages and
there`s 28 lines.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That`s about 170 signatures for drum major
Mandolin Ferrar (ph). Her mother planning a special booster club meeting
Wednesday night, hoping to up with ideas to raise more than 400,000 dollars
to save the city`s music programs.


SCHULTZ: No doubt, it is the crumbling of America right before our
eyes. Infrastructure falling apart and priorities being totally distorted.

I am joined tonight by Charles Hample. He`s a teacher at Hennepin
Medical -- Middle School, one of the schools that may be closed in all of
this. This is happening in many states across the country. Pennsylvania -
- Pennsylvania, a state with a rich tradition and development of this great
country, is now making a concerted effort to close doors on public

Mr. Hample, I really appreciate you being on the program tonight.
What have you been told about the future of your middle school?

CHARLES HAMPLE, PA. SCHOOL TEACHER: I just want to first say, thanks
for having me on. I watched you last night and I felt it was my obligation
to come on and talk to not only Pennsylvania, but the nation about what
we`re facing, not just in York City School District, but Redding School
District, Harrisburg School District, and all urban school districts across

We`re facing a closure at our school. They`re looking to close our
school, Hennepin middle school and also Smith Middle School. Like you
already said, they furloughed 50 teachers. And we totally expect another
round of furloughs to follow.

SCHULTZ: What`s happening in this country is this is a result of
going into two wars that weren`t paid for, big pharma, and two rounds of
tax cuts that nobody did the math on. And now we`re gutting our
infrastructure in this country. Professionals such as yourself, who`s got
a college degree, who has experience, that works with young children in
this country are now being cast aside so the wealthiest Americans can live
a little bit better.

How do you feel about that?

HAMPLE: Well, I have to tell you, it`s the Corbett administration way
to devalue teachers, because if you devalue teachers, you`re not going to
have to pay them any money. I don`t know about you, but I do know that no
teacher that I teach with are living high on the hog. We don`t have big
swimming pools and we don`t have big cars.

We teach because we love our kids. And it`s to the point now where
teachers are coming in, in our district, in our school, it`s like the
walking dead. Teachers are still coming in. They`ve been told they`ve
been furloughed. They`re teaching. They`re buying paper for their kids.
And I just think it`s a back door way for the Corbett administration to
dismantle the unions and what we stand for.

SCHULTZ: Mr. Hample, how are the kids responding to all of this? I
understand that there`s been one child who has writing a letter to the
governor of the Pennsylvania and asking him to come to their school and see
exactly what`s happening. This is coming from a fifth grader. Tell us
about that.

HAMPLE: I have -- I teach fifth grade. And I right now have 27 kids
in my classroom, which seems big, but next year, as you already reported
last night, we`re looking at class sizes between 40 and 45. I find it
important to keep my students up to date on what`s going on, not only with
them, but with other school districts and politics and what`s going on in
the news.

Every students in my classroom chose to write a letter to Governor
Corbett. One in particular letter, a student -- and I`ll quote here right
here. She states in her letter to Governor Corbett that "we may have
problems in our homes, but we come to our school with a smile on our face
every single day."

She also extended an invitation to Governor Corbett to come to our
school and spend a day with us in our classroom, because she feels that
they`re cutting education funding, they`re cutting her education
opportunities to go to art, have music, have gym, have guidance counselors
because she`s a bad person.

She feels that she`s being targeted because they think that in the
inner city schools -- the kids in inner city schools are bad people. And
that`s an open invitation to the governor.

SCHULTZ: It`s doing damage to the kids, there`s no question about it.
There`s no doubt.

HAMPLE: No question.

SCHULTZ: And how do you feel, Mr. Hample? you know, you`re the
problem. The conservatives say that you`re the problem. You`re not doing
a good enough job in the classroom, that these kids aren`t performing very
well? Doesn`t that infuriate you? This is the overwhelming narrative that
we`re hearing coming from the right wing in this country.

HAMPLE: Sure. They -- they want to say we`re the problem. And
they`re judging our success on student scores. Of course, they`re also --
the student scores are coming from a state standardized test, where even a
child with learning disabilities or severe disabilities is measured the
same way. In a district like ours, the poorer districts, we have a higher
percentage of special education students, who are required to take the same
test as a student without disabilities.

So even if my students make a gain from a first grade reading level to
a third grade reading level in one year, I`m still a failure as a teacher.
Even though I moved them -- yeah. And, you know, I think a lot of the
public -- they don`t understand what`s going on.

SCHULTZ: No, they don`t.

HAMPLE: And that`s why --

SCHULTZ: And the talking culture that`s out there against education,
against public education, against people such as yourself, is really
overwhelming at times. Mr. Hample, I really appreciate you coming on the
program tonight. I know you speak for hundreds of thousands of people in
your profession, at all levels, elementary, secondary education, across --
everybody knows what you`re talking about.

It`s these damned Republicans that just don`t understand the value of
public education. They want to find fault with everything. They don`t
find any kind of positive stories at all when it comes to education. And
this is the result. And now you`re going to be in a school district where
they`re expecting -- well, heck, you could raise your property taxes 17
percent. Who`s in favor of that?

HAMPLE: And that doesn`t work.

SCHULTZ: And that doesn`t work in the school district.

HAMPLE: And it doesn`t work because we can`t -- you know, you raise
the property taxes 17 percent, who`s going to want to move there. No one`s
going to come and move there. So we`re not collecting the taxes anyway.

SCHULTZ: Mr. Hample, great to have you with us. I will stay on this
story. And I challenge Governor Corbett of Pennsylvania to come face to
face with me on this program and explain just what in the hell are you
doing to kids.

Michele Bachmann loves America. At least that`s what she says. So
why is she eligible to run for office in Switzerland? Find out next on THE



BACHMANN: What I would say is that the news media should do a
penetrating expose and take a look. I wish they would. I wish the
American media would take a great look at the views of the people in
Congress and find out, are they pro-America or anti-America.


SCHULTZ: Well, your wish is my command. We all know Michele Bachmann
loves America more than anybody else. We know she would never trade in her
freedom and liberty for some kind of European-style socialism. That`s why
I find this news to report tonight slightly confusing. Take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Republican U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann,
a former White House hopeful, and a favorite of the conservative Tea Party
movement, has a new political option. She can run for office in


SCHULTZ: Holy smokes! It turns out the reason Bachmann can run for
office in Switzerland is because she is now a Swiss citizen. Way to go,
Europe! You see, Bachmann`s husband, Marcus, is of Swiss decent, good for
him, which makes his family eligible for citizenship.

According to Bachmann`s office, the Bachmann`s kids wanted to apply
for dual citizenship, so the whole dog gone family went through the
process. Bachmann spoke to Swiss TV to announce her defection.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I understand you have been to Switzerland a lot.
What`s your favorite place there?

BACHMANN: Oh, goodness. You know, I really have to say that I love
going to the Bren Sea (ph) and the Toon Sea (ph). It`s beautiful. But
also my husband`s home. They`re from Mirshtaten (ph) and Wiel (ph).


SCHULTZ: I guess visiting Mitt Romney`s money has not been on her
most recent itinerary. Look, the congresswoman is now eligible to vote in
Swiss elections. However, she wouldn`t be able to enjoy the benefits of
the country`s health insurance mandate unless she lives there.

But, congratulations, Switzerland, she`s all yours. You know what I
think? I think President Obama should go for dual citizenship, to see if
the righties will go along with that. Their silence is ominous on this
issue, isn`t it? Michelle, you`re not a turncoat, are you?

Next up, women`s health is under attack in Arizona. Cecile Richards,
president of Planned Parenthood, will weigh in. Stay with us.


SCHULTZ: ED SHOW survey tonight, do you agree with President Obama`s
endorsement of same-sex marriage? Eighty eight percent of you say yes; 12
percent of you say no.

Coming up, Mitt says the GOP is pro-woman, but their policies are
anything but that. Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood joins me next.
Stay with us.


SCHULTZ: And in the Big Finish tonight, over the past 48 hours, one
thing has become crystal clear. Mitt Romney`s only strategy is to lie.
First he`s taking credit for the automobile industry`s success and
turnaround. Now he`s claiming nobody is more pro-woman than the Republican
party. Here`s what he had to say with Hannity last night.


ROMNEY: The effort to describe Republicans as being anything other
than extraordinarily pro-woman, pro-opportunity for women of America, pro-
moms, pro-working moms, pro-working women -- look, that kind of effort is
totally missing the mark and people understand that.


SCHULTZ: He`s so forward, he`s stumbling, mumbling, fumbling. Lying
is just another way for Romney to get those Republican talking points
across. But the Republican party`s policies, don`t they tell a different
story? Yes.

From introducing the Blunt/Rubio Amendment, to blocking paycheck
fairness, it`s a coordinated effort by the GOP to chip away at women`s
rights. What about family planning and of course access to preventative

Mitt Romney had this to say.


ROMNEY: Of course you get rid of Obamacare. That`s the easy one.
But there are others. Planned Parenthood, we`re going to get rid of that.


SCHULTZ: Let`s turn to Cecile Richards, president of Planned
Parenthood Action Fund. Cecile, great to have you with us tonight. How
offensive is it that Mitt Romney is trying to say the Republican party is
pro-woman, when we know exactly what the issues are?

think exactly what you`ve just listed, it kind of speaks for itself. We`ve
seen the last 18 months a sort of repetitive effort all across the country
to end women`s access to care and to preventative care.

We saw that again in Arizona just last week, and in Texas where
Governor Perry`s already cut off preventative health services for more than
150,000 women. I think the thing that`s really worrisome, though -- and
you sort of alluded to it there -- is that the policies we`re seeing now in
Texas and Arizona, where women are losing access to birth control, losing
access to cancer screening, this is what Mitt Romney has promised to do for
the entire country.

SCHULTZ: So how much of a fraud is Mitt Romney to purport the idea
that the Republican party is very pro-woman?

RICHARDS: Well, look, I`ll say this, Planned Parenthood has millions
of Republican supporters. A lot of our Planned Parenthood chapters were
started by Republicans. I was in Arizona, where the Goldwater family was -
-- you know, Peggy Goldwater, co-founder of Planned Parenthood.

So it`s not Republicans. It`s frankly the politicians right now who
are running for office. And I think we saw that in the Republican primary,
unfortunately, where every candidate was trying to outdo each other for
being worse on women`s health care. And unfortunately Mr. Romney is going
right along with them, pledging to not only get rid of Planned Parenthood,
but to end the health care services for five million women in this country,
a program that was signed into law by Richard Nixon, a Republican

SCHULTZ: Absolutely amazing. And it`s just amazing how access to
health care has become a partisan issue. And women are at the core of this
entire thing. And it is about discrimination. Would you go so far as to
say that the Republican party and Mitt Romney are willing to discriminate
against women when it comes to health care?

RICHARDS: Again, I really want to distinguish the party from Mr.
Romney. Because again, I think there are a lot of Republicans who support
Planned Parenthood, who support women having access to health care
services. I think what`s really sad is to see folks putting politics ahead
of women`s health care access.

I mean, in Texas, again, women have lost access to preventative cancer
screenings for breast cancer and cervical cancer. And Mr. Romney`s
promised to do that now all across the country, if he`s elected president.
That`s what`s really disturbing.

SCHULTZ: Cecile Richards, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks
so much.

RICHARDS: Thanks for having me.

SCHULTZ: You bet. That`s THE ED SHOW. I`m Ed Schultz. "THE RACHEL
MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.


<Copy: Content and programming copyright 2012 NBC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Copyright 2012 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by
United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed,
transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written
permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark,
copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>

The Ed Show Section Front
Add The Ed Show headlines to your news reader:

Sponsored links

Resource guide