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The Ed Show for Wednesday, July 11, 2012

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Guests: Hilary Shelton, Michael Nutter, Chris Kofinis, Mark Simone; Charles
Blow; Ari Melber; Steny Hoyer; George Zornick

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

The boo birds were out for Mitt Romney during a speech to the NAACP.
Tonight, I`ll show you why he got off easy.

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


REPORTER: This was perhaps one of the most negative reactions Mitt
Romney has had in the course of his 2012 presidential campaign.

SCHULTZ (voice-over): Mitt Romney gets booed mercilessly for his
vision for America.

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think we expected that, of

SCHULTZ: Tonight, Hilary Shelton of the NAACP, and Philadelphia Mayor
Michael Nutter on what happens when Mitt Romney tells the truth.

Repeal and disgrace. House Republicans vote to take health care away
from Americans. House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer is here with reaction.

And today, the congressional budget office debunks one of the greatest
Republican lies ever told.

SEN. JON KYL (R), ARIZONA: Unless the president gets off of his
absolute obsession with raising taxes --

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: Under Barack Obama, he has one
plan and one plan only, and that`s to raise everyone`s taxes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s raising the taxes like crazy. We need


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

Mitt Romney spoke to the NAACP convention in Houston, Texas, today.
The Republican candidate delivered a speech short on specifics and long on
tepid generalities.


ROMNEY: Some may wonder why a Republican would campaign in the
African-American community and to address the NAACP. One reason, of
course, is I hope to represent all Americans of every race, creed, and
sexual orientation --


ROMNEY: -- from the poorest to the richest and everyone in between.


SCHULTZ: Romney was greeted with polite applause throughout the
speech, and even got some encouraging organ music.


ROMNEY: I can`t promise you that I`ll agree on every issue, but I do
promise that your hospitality to me today will be returned. We will know
one another.


ROMNEY: And we will work to common purpose.


SCHULTZ: The audience gave Romney their attention and a fair hearing.

At the end of the speech, the crowd respectfully offered a standing
ovation to the candidate. The attendees gave him some credit for showing
up -- unlike the previous president, George W. Bush, who openly shunned any
invitations to the NAACP convention.

But there was one moment where Mitt Romney delivered an actual policy
position. The reception, well, that was not very warm.


ROMNEY: If our goal is jobs, we have to stop spending over a trillion
dollars more than we take in every year. And so to do that --


ROMNEY: -- and so to do that, I`m going to eliminate every non-
essential expensive program I can find. That includes Obamacare, and I`m
going to work to reform and save --



SCHULTZ: Fourteen seconds. That`s how long Mitt Romney was booed for
saying he will repeal Obamacare. Reporters on the scene said the reaction
was stunning.


REPORTER: I have not heard that kind of sustained booing for Mitt
Romney during the course of this campaign up until what happen today at the
NAACP. I don`t think it really is sort of overstating it. This was
perhaps one of the most negative reactions Mitt Romney has had in the
course of his 2012 presidential campaign.


SCHULTZ: After the speech, Romney said he expected to be booed by the
crowd. He told FOX News the crowd was with him more than they were against


ROMNEY: At the end of my speech, having a standing ovation was
generous and hospitable on part of the audience, and I believe that while
we disagree on some issues like Obamacare, on a lot of issues people see
eye to eye. They want somebody who can get the economy going again.


SCHULTZ: African-Americans want someone to get the economy going, no
doubt. But they don`t want Mitt Romney.

In a recent poll NBC News put out, along with "Wall Street Journal",
only 1 percent of African-American voters want Mitt Romney to be the
president of the United States.

The NAACP released a statement thanking the candidate, Mitt Romney,
for coming out, and pointed out how little support Romney has in the
African-American community. It read, "Unfortunately, much of his agenda is
at odds with what the NAACP stands for -- whether the issue is equal access
to affordable health care, reforming our education system, or the path
forward on marriage equality."

One audience member told "BuzzFeed", "You cannot possibly talk about
jobs for black people at the level he`s coming from. He`s talking about
entrepreneurship, savings accounts -- black people can barely find a way to
get back and forth from work."

African-American voters have no reason to trust Mitt Romney,
especially when he says things like this.


ROMNEY: In June, while the overall unemployment rate remained stuck
at 8.2 percent. The unemployment rate for African-Americans went up from
13.6 percent to 14.4 percent.


SCHULTZ: Yes, unemployment in the African-American community has gone
up. But you see, the devil`s in the details. From 2008 to 2010, Africa
African-Americans made up more than 21 percent of the public sector
workforce. There are 30 percent more likely to work in the public sector
than non-black workers.

Check out this number: 636,000. That`s how many public sector jobs
have been lost while Republicans have been calling for eliminating more and
more government employment.

Mitt Romney`s solution for the economy is to keep cutting public
sector jobs. It`s popular with the Republicans.

Romney`s record as governor of Massachusetts is also a pretty tough
sell for African-Americans. According to the former head of the Boston
NAACP, the only time the NAACP had any interaction with the administration
and the governor was to protest when he eliminated the Affirmative Action

Romney never spoke about the Republican voter ID laws being
implemented across the country, and he should have. Twenty-five percent of
African-Americans lack the proper ID to comply with these laws. Many of
these voters are in key swing states like Pennsylvania and Florida.

Romney also didn`t mention how his tax policy would affect African-
American families. The median income for African-American households in
America is at $32,000. Well, Romney`s tax plan would raise taxes on those
making less than $30,000 a year while people on the opposite end of the
scale, they would get a nice tax cut -- again.

Romney didn`t talk about any of these things today because he can`t.
And if he tells the truth about his policies and how they affect the
African-American community, he will get booed just like this.


ROMNEY: If you want a president who will make things better in the
African-American community, you are looking at him. You take a look.


SCHULTZ: Well, those voters have taken a look, Mitt Romney, and 99
percent of them don`t like what they see.

Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think. Tonight`s
question: whose are better for the African-American community? Text A for
President Obama, text B for Romney, to 622639. You could always go to our
blog at We`ll bring you the results later in the show.

I`m joined tonight by Hilary Shelton, senior vice president for
advocacy and policy , and the director of the Washington bureau of the
NAACP, and Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter.

Gentlemen, great to have you with us tonight.

Something interesting developed after the speech today. Mitt Romney
said he had a secret meeting with black leaders after his speech today.
Here it is.


ROMNEY: I spoke with a number of African-American leaders after the
event, and they said, you know, a lot of folks don`t want to say they`re
not going to be voting for Barack Obama, but they`re disappointed in his
lack of policies to improve our schools, disappointed in urban policy,
disappointed in the economy.


ROMNEY: All right, Mr. Candidate, give me some names. Who are these
people that came up to you and said they`re actually going to support you?

Hilary Shelton, I`ve got to you, do you know about the secret meetings
after the speech today?

HILARY SHELTON, NAACP: I`m not surprised. Quite frankly, the
campaign gave me a list of African-American VIPs that they brought in to
the NAACP meeting. So we were aware they had people brought in
specifically for the campaign.

So I`m sure those are the ones they sat down with because quite
frankly, none of the rank-and-file NAACP met with him.

SCHULTZ: None of them met with him?

SHELTON: None of the rank and file NAACPers?

SCHULTZ: What leaders is he talking about?

SHELTON: He`s talking about people like Niger Innis that was brought
in from New York. He`s talking about African-American Republican
politicians that were actually brought in, flown in, to the NAACP
convention in Houston, Texas, to be there for the president alone. They
weren`t there before he got there. The few meetings -- our convention
started on Sunday.

SCHULTZ: I think a big key here, and I want to clarify, are these
members of the NAACP? You said they were flown in. That means Mitt Romney
rigged the crowd to support him so he could go on TV and say I got a lot of
support among African-American leaders. What`s happening here?

SHELTON: Apparently, that`s what the case is. They`re bringing
people in that they know will support his agenda from other places that
aren`t active with the NAACP. These are people who were brought in to
actually provide the cheering forum so there will be some support along
those lines.

But, Ed, let me be clear. The NAACP is one of the most respectful
organizations on the continent.

SCHULTZ: No doubt.

SHELTON: Quite frankly, we have heard from many Republican candidates
in the past. If they say things we disagree with. We sit on our hands and
listen politely. We really do want to hear from all sides.

We`re nonpartisan. For us, it`s about the agenda. It`s about what
you plan on doing for our communities.

So, in this case, the problem, and the reason the booing happens in
the first place, quite frankly, wasn`t because he criticized the Affordable
Care Act. It`s because of his characterization of it using Barack Obama`s
name along those lines, seemed very disrespectful. So, those kind of
things were very problematic. If we walk through the issues and agendas
that he raised, sure, we disagree with him, and no we don`t think they`re
in the best interest of the NAACP or the communities we serve.


SHELTON: As a matter of fact, what we did with this particular
convention is set our policy, and as the press release that was released
said, these policies are in diametric opposition in many cases with the
policy positions of the NAACP.

SCHULTZ: All right. Mayor Nutter, your city is 44 percent African-
American, 18 percent of registered African-American voters in Philadelphia,
they lack a voter id. Does Mitt Romney need to answer for these voter ID

MAYOR MICHAEL NUTTER (D), PHILADELPHIA: Well, if he`s running for
president of the United States, he should certainly have something to say
about it. If he cares about the American right to vote and today he was
out at the NAACP, probably said the word African-American or black more
times today than maybe he`s said in his life, then he should have something
to say about it.

I mean, increasingly, as we see him on this campaign trail, listen to
what he`s talking about, I`m increasingly of the opinion that Mitt Romney
is a fake. He is a phony. He is playing a role. He checked off the box
today that he went to the NAACP.

As you just laid out, I had not heard this part of the story.
Apparently now he traveled with his own posse of black people to then be
able to characterize he had some conversations with some black folks who
are supportive of his campaign.

But as Hilary pointed out, they weren`t members of the NAACP. I mean,
this is the biggest okie doke that has come along in a while. I mean, it`s
just part and parcel of the insult that he laid out today, as was already
characterized, using the president`s name in a disrespectful, insulting
fashion as a part of the health care reference.

It was clearly a throw away line. I heard the audio, and he was
almost brushing past it, and then the avalanche of boos came on because of
what he was saying. I mean, this is pretty outrageous, as this story
continues to develop.

SCHULTZ: Well, it is so like Mitt Romney. This is a man who has been
very vague, short on specifics. And now he`s telling FOX News that he
actually met with black leaders that support him. It`s just so like him.

NUTTER: That apparently he carries around like he carries them in his
back pocket and then pops them out in a meeting in an office and says, oh,
I met with some black people. They weren`t the folks you came to talk to.
I mean, this is insane.

SCHULTZ: Well, you`re a mayor of a large city, Philadelphia. Do any
of his policies match up with the African-American community?

NUTTER: I don`t think he`s talking about anything that matches up
with most of America -- black, white, green, yellow, red. I mean, he was
in Philly a couple months back at a school, and of course, got his picture
taken with some little black children, and then started talking about his
education views, one of which is that smaller class size is not better for
children. I mean, that`s just kind of dumb. I mean, every second grader
knows better than that.

That he cut funding for education when he was governor, that`s a fact.
He laid off teachers, firefighters, and police officers. That`s a fact.
And left his state pretty much in disarray. That`s a fact.

So he should be coming forward, talking about specific plans and
ideas. It`s July. The election is in November.

What is his education plan? We don`t know. What is his real tax
reform plan? We don`t know. What is his job creation strategy? We don`t

He wants to spend the entire campaign running around criticizing the
great work of President Barack Obama who has a record. Mitt Romney has no
record of doing anything in the black community, has not one leg to stand
on in that regard -- and I mean, it`s kind of nutty.

SCHULTZ: Mayor Michael Nutter, you have said a lot tonight and you`re
spot on.

Hilary Shelton and Michael Nutter, great to have you with us on THE ED

Remember to answer tonight`s question here at the bottom of the screen
and share your thoughts on Twitter @EdShow, and on Facebook. We want to
know what you think.

The greatest lie ever told about President Obama has been smacked down
by the simple truth, and we`ll bring it to you next.

And later, the latest on the whereabouts and well being of Congressman
Jesse Jackson, Jr. There`s breaking news on that story.

Stay with us. We`re right back.


SCHULTZ: Coming up, this is one of the greatest Republican lies of
all time. They say it all the time. It`s debunked, next.

And a new report from the nation magazine finds that Mitt Romney`s
biggest supporters -- well, they also hide their money overseas. We`ll
talk to the man who broke that story.

And today, it was repeal and replace, and it was really repeal and
disgrace. I`ll talk to the Democratic House Whip Steny Hoyer about today`s
Republican spectacle.

Share your thoughts on Twitter with us, on Facebook, and Twitter,
using the #EdShow.

We`re coming right back.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

This is one of the greatest lies ever told -- the Republicans, they
want every American to think this more than anything else -- that President
Obama is a classic tax and spend liberal. That`s what they want you to

But here`s the truth. Under President Obama, taxes have hit a 30-year
low, in part because of tax cuts enacted by the president as part of the
stimulus package. Average tax rates are lower than they were under
President Ronald Reagan, Bush 41, and Bill Clinton, and, of course, Bush
43, President George W. Bush. That`s the truth.

These numbers come from the Congressional Budget Office and it`s true
of incomes and all federal taxes absolutely combined.

Now, under President Obama, taxes are at a 30-year low despite what
Tea Partiers would want you to believe. Heck, that`s what the Tea Party is
about, Taxed Enough Already.

Here`s what I want you to do. Do me a favor. Just do Big Eddy a
favor one time. The chart we showed you, it`s on the Web site. Send the
chart to four of your conservative friends. It`s on our blob at Send it to Fred who showed up at the barbecue last week.

I mean, the chart goes through 2000, and since then, he has lowered
taxes even more. Of course, by singing the payroll tax cut. Now, of
course, this hasn`t stopped Republicans from complaining about taxes under
the president`s watch.


REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), HOUSE SPEAKER: It sounds to me like the
same old policies we have seen -- more spending, higher taxes.

they mean higher taxes.

REP. ERIC CANTOR (R-VA), MAJORITY: I do disagree with the notion that
somehow we need to hike taxes.

MCCONNELL: We don`t have the problem because we tax too little.

BOEHNER: We see permanent tax increases put into effect in order to
pay for temporary spending.

REP. PAUL RYAN (R), WISCONSIN: The last thing we should be doing is
raising taxes on the economy.

BOEHNER: You can`t tax the very people you expect to reinvest in the
economy and to grow jobs.

CANTOR: If you send a signal that you say to all of the job creators,
hey, we`re going to tax you even more.

RYAN: Saying that for America to be competitive in the 21st century,
we need lower tax rates.


SCHULTZ: I`ll tell you what, I think the Republicans have to come out
tomorrow and say that the Congressional Budget Office, they`re totally not
credible, and we should listen to them, the Republicans.

Some of these Republicans whining was in response to the president`s
pledge to let the Bush tax cuts expire for the top 2 percent, but tax rates
would still be at a record low.

President Obama has had to combat the lie time and time again with the


of folks on cable TV claiming that I`m this big tax and spend liberal.
Next time you hear that, you just remind the people who are saying it that
since I have taken office, I have cut your taxes.

Your taxes today, the average middle class family, your taxes today
are lower than when I took office. Just remember that.


SCHULTZ: Let`s turn to Democratic strategist Chris Kofinis.

I`ll tell you what, Chris, I cannot wait for debates. I mean, the
numbers are the numbers, and the lies are the lies.

How does this play for the Democrats?

really well. I mean, this is a mythology that Republicans have been
beating Democrats about for years. As the CBO kind of pointed out in a
very dramatic way, you know, this notion that Barack Obama is Che Guevara
when it comes to taxes a myth. Here`s actually more Ronald Reagan. And in
fact, Ronald Reagan is more Che Guevara.

So, you know, this is the irony. The president, I think, and
Democrats have cut taxes. In fact, as you pointed out, up to 2009, but
when you go past 2009, we passed the payroll tax extension twice. We
extended the Bush tax cuts. He`s calling for another middle class tax cut.

So, this mythology is just blatantly false. It`s a lie.

SCHULTZ: I`ll answer my own question. I don`t think most Americans
get this. They have done such a great job of painting this picture and
image of President Obama raising taxes because that`s all they say, that
people are believing it.

Here`s President Obama talking about a typical middle class family.


OBAMA: But we`re talking about how over the last four years because
of policies my administration put in place, we have been able to offer the
McLaughlins about $4,900 in tax relief.


SCHULTZ: I mean, does the president need to do more of this. Drive
this theme home? Drive this point home?

KOFINIS: I mean, I think he has to -- I mean, partly because it has
become clearly the narrative in the election, partly because you have Mitt
Romney`s incredibly wealthy individual, he won`t release his taxes. He has
this tax cut philosophy that will just explode the deficit over $5

So, you`ve got to hammer in, you`ve got to make this a choice. The
choice is whether you`re going to stand up for the middle class or not.
And I think the tax cut argument and all of the different policies the
Democrats are fighting for helps re-enforce that.

SCHULTZ: And here`s the other thing, the Republicans love to tell the
American people, oh, we`re the champions of small business. See what the
president said today? The White House wants to increase the write-off for
small businesses up to $250,000.

This will help defeat the Republican talking points, but let`s talk
about business for just a moment. If you buy a piece of equipment now, a
tractor, a truck, or whatever, the whole thing can be written off in 2013.
That is going to go right to the bottom line for small businesses.

I mean, the truth is the truth. Republicans keep lying about this
stuff. The question is, will it defeat the Republican talking points? And
are the Democrats going to be good enough and smart enough to get on the
same page when they go home and campaign in August?

Chris, you got the floor.

KOFINIS: Well, you know, here`s the challenge. As you kind of played
out in your run-down, Republicans are incredibly on message when it comes
to taxes and have been so for years.


KOFINIS: And I think we try to do more of a nuanced argument, and the
fact is it shouldn`t be nuanced, we cut taxes and we cut taxes for the
middle class.

SCHULTZ: Period.

KOFINIS: We have done it every single year, period. That`s our

If you want middle class tax cuts, you`re going to vote for Democrats.
If you want tax cuts that are going to go to the wealthiest few, vote
Republicans. It`s really that simple a choice.

SCHULTZ: Chris Kofinis, great to have you with us on THE ED SHOW --

Coming up, he`s the tax haven candidate. Find out how Mitt Romney and
his friends are making their fortune. I`ll show you what`s really costing
you and the country next.

And President Obama wants to keep tax rates the same for 98 percent of
the American people. Meanwhile, Republicans are worried about the top 2
percent. Our panel will weigh in on that.

Stay with us.


SCHULTZ: Remember that movie "All the President`s Men" and Deep
Throat says, "Follow the money. Follow the money"?

Well, Mitt Romney is refusing to talk about his taxes and his
investments. Even FOX News co-host Eric Bolling admits he`s suspicious of
Romney`s offshore banking habits.


ERIC BOWLING, FOX NEWS HOST: If you put money in a Swiss bank
account, you are doing it for a reason. I don`t know what his reason is.


SCHULTZ: Mitt Romney insists that he`s not hiding anything, but he
does admit a lot of his wealth is socked away in offshore bank accounts.
And it turns out, you know what, he is hanging out his friends are doing
the same dug on thing.

The "Nation" magazine revealed today that Romney`s biggest campaign
donors, well, they love offshore tax havens, too. Here`s the list of
Romney`s top 11 donors.

Number five is under federal investigation for allegedly hiding $3
billion from the internal revenue service. Donor number six is ranked as
America`s top tax haven abuser. Numbers 10 and 11, well look at this, they
are accounting firms that specialize in what? Helping people like Mitt
Romney set up offshore accounts. How handy is that?

Romney is campaigning to cut taxes for all of the companies on the
donors list. But Romney is refusing to answer questions like this one.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Is it your believe it`s unpatriotic for
someone to have a Swiss bank account?


SCHULTZ: Wait a second here, this seems like a question Mitt Romney
should have to handle. Here`s President Obama`s answer.


important if you are running for president is that the American people know
who you are, what you have done, and you`re an open book. You`re asking
the American people to place an enormous amount of faith in you and it`s
important for you to be able to say here`s who I am and what I have done.


SCHULTZ: Here`s what Romney and his buddies have done.

Offshore tax havens cost the federal government $100 billion a year.
They cost the average tax filer $434 a year. That would be per American.
Now, Romney is promising his friends and even bigger tax break.

Voters, you know what, it comes down to this. American people are
just going to have to render judgment on whether they think that`s the best
thing for America and the best thing for Americans to do.

Joining me tonight is George Zornick, Washington reporter for the
"Nation" magazine.

George, good to have you with us. Tell us about the donors list.
Tell us, you know, they all do what Romney does?

really striking when we looked at the list and went down name after name
after name. And saw 10 out of the 11 top names on this list were people
who were stashing not millions but billions of dollars overseas.

Now, we don`t know because he won`t disclose exactly what Mitt Romney
is hiding. But we know what the companies are hiding. You know as you
mentioned, Citigroup, the number one abuser of offshore tax havens has over
1200 tax havens. And that`s just one of them.

You mentioned the accounting firms and credit Swiss, is not only - I
mean, is literally a Swiss bank that is under investigation by the
department of justice right now for helping Americans evade taxes by hiding
them in Swiss bank accounts.

SCHULTZ: You know, the question in that interview was is it
unpatriotic? I think that question is, is it patriotic to take your money
offshore? Is it the American thing to do to take your money offshore? I
mean, Romney said he`s not hiding anything and that reports like yours that
you came out with are just a distraction. What`s your response?

ZORNICK: No. I think contrary to what Lindsey Graham and others have
said, it`s not American to hide your income from the government so it can`t
tax it. You know, I think in addition, when people wonder what is this one
percent versus 99 percent thing about? You know, this is a good story to
tell. It`s a small economic elite that is maximizing their profits at the
expense of virtually everyone else. That all of the people who are paying
their taxes fairly or who would like to see the government invest more in
jobs or education or health care.

SCHULTZ: George, from your reporting, what should Americans demand to
know about Mitt Romney`s accounts?

ZORNICK: I think they -- everyone should know how much exactly he`s
hiding, how much money -- how much taxes he would otherwise be paying. But
I think in addition, what the report shows is that regardless of what Mitt
Romney does or doesn`t do, it`s something that the people who are bank
rolling his campaign are going to be very interested in seeing continue to

You know in 2009, President Obama actually went after this practice.
He was blocked by Republicans, and I think that`s something you can expect
to see should there be a president Romney.

SCHULTZ: We can only imagine if this was the case for Barack Obama in
2008 that this would have been a big patriotic issue in point of
conversation for the right wing in this country, no doubt about it.

George Zornick, great work. Great to have you with us.

ZORNICK: Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ: From "the Nation" magazine.

Coming up, breaking news on whereabouts and well-being of Illinois
Congressman Jesse Jackson Junior. And there`s a lot more ahead in the next
half hour of "the Ed Show." Stay with us.


SCHULTZ: Will Senate Republicans vote down a tax cut for the middle
class? The big panel weighs in next.

House Republicans vote to take away health care for millions of
Americans for the 33rd time. House democratic whip Steny Hoyer joins me.




OBAMA: My message to Congress is this. Pass a bill, extending the
tax cuts for the middle class. I will sign it tomorrow. Pass it next
week, I`ll sign it next week. Pass it next -- you get the idea.


SCHULTZ: Welcome back to "the Ed Show."

Obviously, President Obama pushing his plan to extend tax cuts for
middle class Americans.

Talking points memo just reported, senate majority leader Harry Reid
has enough votes to pass the president`s plan if Republicans agree not to
filibuster it. The plan will let the Bush tax cuts expire for the top two
percent exceeding $250,000 in income.

However, lower tax rates will stay the same for families making
$250,000 a year or less. That means 98 percent of the American people will
not see a tax hike come January.

Meanwhile, Republicans are kicking up some same old bogus arguments
this morning. Senator Mitch McConnell used the old, you can`t raise taxes
on the job creators. He made that pitch again. He asked senator Harry
Reid for two votes. One of the president`s plan and one on a Republican
plan to extend tax cuts for people of all income levels.

Majority leader Harry Reid denied the request. He argued the GOP vote
would really do nothing but obstruct the president`s plan and give massive
tax breaks to the people who really don`t need them in our economy.

A vote will come soon on Obama`s plan. And it should pass as long as
the Republicans play ball. But remember, we`ve seen a record number of
filibusters. Stay tuned.

For more, let`s turn to "New York times" columnist Charles Blow,
conservative radio talk show host, Mark Simone, and "the Nation" magazine
Ari Melber.

Charles -- Mark, let me ask you first, why is it? Why is it that the
Republicans want to continually protect the top two percent in the country?

don`t trust either side on this. It`s not going to be great mo matter what
way it goes. But, you are talking about exposing the big lie. The big lie
for ten years was that the Bush tax cuts were only for the wealthy. The
Bush tax cuts were just for the rich. We are now exposing the fact that 98
percent of it went to the middle class. That`s become obvious from this.

And the question is, when you have an out of control spending problem,
is the solution to figure out a way to pay for it or cut spending? We have
plenty of revenue right now.

SCHULTZ: But the Republicans still want to protect the top two
percent when we need more money in the treasury. The Democrats have said
you want to go big, we`ll go big on spending cuts and they backed off on
that. The Republicans won`t serve it up and they`re going to protect the
top two percent. How else do we read that?

SIMONE: Well, I don`t trust either solutions. We have the most
expensive politicians money can buy, literally. So, you have Democrats
playing games. You have an economic record for the past four years you
can`t run on. Jennifer Reuben, the great Washington Post columnist, calls
it the shiny object strategy, just keep dangling shiny object -- .

Charles, what are we seeing here?

that. I mean first, when you say that this would not affect the bottom 98
percent, that doesn`t mean -- hold on a second, that doesn`t mean that that
is just -- that the Bush tax cuts were just operating and helping the
middle class. AP did a report in December basically saying one out of
every two people in America is either poor or low income.

So basically, what we`re looking at is trying to figure out ways to
help people really far down the economic spectrum and being willing to go
up to $250,000, which is actually very high on the income spectrum. It`s
not like we`re most middle class people are.

SIMONE: One thing the Bush tax cuts did though, is took the bottom 50
percent out of the federal tax system. The bottom 50 percent really
doesn`t pay any federal tax right now.

BLOW: You`re talking about income taxes. It`s a different thing than
paying no taxes.

ARI MELBER, THE NATION MAGAZINE: If I could jump in for the first
time. I think the problem is what Mark is saying only sounds good if
you`re not paying attention. If you`re paying attention, you know that the
nonpartisan congressional budget office put out a study this week that says
under Barack Obama, we have the lowest tax rates of any time in the last 30
years, 17 percent, that`s lower than under George W. Bush, lower than under
most of Ronald Reagan. I`m not done because I heard you out. You`re going
to hear me out.

So, what you`re saying does not fix with the facts, which are we have
lower tax rates under Barack Obama. The question now is do we want to
continue that plan for most people, have lower tax rates for 98 percent,
and do we think that deficit reduction is important enough to tax

This is the problem, you don`t think the deficit is important enough
to tax millionaires because you and a lot of Republicans don`t care about
the deficit. It`s just a device to cut spending.

SIMONE: Well, nothing you say completes any -- I`m simply saying you
have an out of control spending problem. I don`t know if you just want to
keep finding away to pay for it. And the other thing is you have to talk
about fairness in taxes. Right now, the top one percent pays 38 percent of
all of the tax. The top two percent paid 40 percent. The top 10 percent
pays 71 percent.

MELBER: I believe the type of numbers you are using are --

SIMONE: Federal tax.

MELBER: The numbers are looking at federal tax. You`re not looking
at state, not at regressive taxes.

SIMONE: We are only talking about federal tax here.


MELBER: But again, do you concede, though, that Barack Obama has put
out the lowest tax rates in the last 30 years?

SIMONE: Yes, that`s great. It`s wonderful.

MELBER: It is great, isn`t it?

SIMONE: But now he`s going to end it by trying to increase taxes.

SCHULTZ: He`s not trying to end it. What he`s trying to do is make
sure they`re extended.

The question is will the Republicans go along with it or will they
filibuster it because they`re not going to be able to protect the top two

SIMONE: I`m sure they`ll filibuster it because they`re playing games
as much as the Democrats are.

SCHULTZ: The majority of Americans want to see the top two percent
pay more.

BLOW: This idea that it`s both sides playing games to the same degree
on this particular issue is just not true. It is very hard to craft an
argument that says that that top two percent should be protected from --
what is relatively minor tax increase, but would go a long way towards
reducing the deficit.

And that is the argument that Republicans are making. And they keep
trying to make it on this notion that in doing so, it raises taxes on the
job creators. But the White House is basically saying 97 percent of all
entrepreneurs would not be touched by this.

SCHULTZ: What about Romney`s plan? Well, Romney`s plan would raise
taxes on people making under $30,000 a year.

MELBER: That`s right. What you have here is not a question about
playing games. We have real plans on the table. We have a plan from
Barack Obama that consistent with his record eases the taxes on most
Americans and we have a plan for Romney that hits you with the lower

SCHULTZ: Will they filibuster it?

MELBER: I expect they will and I expect that a party that has done 33
votes to re, re, repeal health care, (INAUDIBLE) an upper down vote on the
jobs act and other things, yes. I expect that and I think that`s wrong.

SIMONE: You can`t repeal it enough.


Charles Blow, Mark Simone, and Ari Melber, great to have you with us
tonight. Thanks so much.

Coming up, new details on the mysterious disappearance and absence of
Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. His family and his doctors open up about his
absence from Congress. That`s next.


SCHULTZ: Tonight in the survey, I asked whose policies are better for
the African-American community? Ninety three percent of you say President
Obama, seven percent of you say Mitt Romney.

Up next, breaking news on the condition of Congressman Jesse Jackson
Jr. His family and his doctors are speaking out. We`ll have details next.
Stay tuned.


SCHULTZ: Illinois Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. has been battling a
house ethics investigation. He`s also been missing in action from Congress
since early June, and now a statement from the congressman`s office and the
Illinois Democrat is receiving intensive medical treatment for a mood
disorder. This comes after pressure from top Democrats to disclose the
congressman`s whereabouts.

The statement said the congressman is at a residential treatment
facility, but no offers -- offers no specifics on the location. The
statement also says Jackson Jr. is responding positively to treatment and
expected to make a full recovery.

When Jackson went on leave last month, his office claimed he was being
treated for exhaustion. Last week, his staff said his condition was worse
than previously thought. And the son of the famed civil rights leader
required in-patient treatment and was battling emotional problems.

Jackson`s medical issues come on the heels of an ethics investigation.
Jackson has denied lobbying former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich to
appoint him to President Obama`s Senate seat in exchange for cash from
Jackson`s front razor. Jackson`s father, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Sr.
says his son is on the road to recovery.


FATHER: He`s slowly regaining his strength. He`s on the medical
supervision and he is taking his time and recovering and of course, we pray
for him and of course, the family embraces him. We hope he`ll be
successful in his return.


SCHULTZ: Tonight, NBC News Andrea Mitchell reports that a family
friends said the congressman`s family is in a state of disarray because the
congressman is suffering from severe clinical depression and has an alcohol
problem. We certainly wish him the best.

Coming up, more political theater from the house Republicans.
Minority whip Steny Hoyer joins me to discuss today`s health care vote.
Stay tuned.


SCHULTZ: And to the big finish tonight. Actually, the big Republican
flop for the 33rd time, house Republicans voted not to create jobs, not to
boost the economy, and not to help the middle class in this country. But
to take away health care from millions of Americans.

This afternoon, five Democrats joined the Republicans and voted to
appeal the affordable care act, a law that was passed by the Congress,
signed by the president, and upheld by the Supreme Court. The Republicans
have vowed repeatedly to repeal the law and replace it with something else.

Democratic congressman Al Green of Texas pointed out the lack of
specifics in the Republicans` alleged proposal.


REP. AL GREEN (D), TEXAS: My constituents insist I read this bill
before voting on it. And my constituents want me to read this bill. This
is the replacement bill, and they want me to be sure that I understand the
replacement bill before I vote to repeal. I shall now read one half of the
replacement bill.

Now, I shall read the other half of the replacement bill. Now, some
of you will say, Al, you read too fast. I didn`t pick up all of that. So
for those who listen slowly or those who may have missed it, I shall now
read the replacement bill in its entirety.


SCHULTZ: Joining me now is house minority whip Steny Hoyer of

Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.

REP. STENY HOYER, HOUSE MINORITY WHIP: It`s always good to be with
you, Ed.

SCHULTZ: You know, this is political theater at its best. Speaker
Boehner said he wanted to hold the vote today to show GOP resolve. Bottom
line is they have never put anything on the table. How is this going to
play with the American people, you think?

HOYER: Well, I hope it played badly with the American people. This
is the 31st or 32nd or 33rd time that they put a repeal bill on the floor.
Everybody knows it`s not going to pass. They`re wasting time. They`re not
addressing jobs. And Al Green`s absolutely right. They want to take away,
as you said, health care affordability and accountability and reliability.

SCHULTZ: They have held no hearings, have they?

HOYER: No hearings and they want to take it from millions and
millions of Americans. From seniors, from young people, from kids with
pre-existing conditions. They want to jerk that away from them and they
have absolutely nothing on the table to replace it.

SCHULTZ: Let me ask you --

HOYER: They say repeal and replace, but they haven`t had any

SCHULTZ: As we roll into the campaign season, you`re doing what you
have to do with your constituents. Is this where you want to be because
the Republicans are trying to set up the narrative that it`s a terrible
law, that it is socialism, and it`s not going to help people. And how are
the Democrats in the messaging role going to be on this on the campaign
trail? Is this for you wants to be?

HOYER: Ed, I think the president is going to be strong on this. This
was a good bill. It means very positive things for all Americans in my
view, those that don`t have insurance, but those who have insurance as

CBO says we`re going to save a trillion dollars in the second ten
years of the bill`s operation. We`re going to have 30 million people who
have availability of health care. We`re going to have kids who won`t have
to worry about pre-existing conditions or people who transfer from one job
to another. We`re going to have seniors who will have that doughnut hole
eliminated for them. We`re going to have people have preventive care they
won`t have to worry about cost.


HOYER: So, I think this is a very positive message for us to take to
the American people. Frankly, the Republicans lost. They thought they
were going to get 50, 60, 70 Democrats to turn their back on the bill.
That didn`t happen.

SCHULTZ: They thought they were going to get more votes than they
did. So, in other words, do you think you can pick up seats in the house
on this vote, on what happened today and on the health care law? You
confident this is going to help the Democrats pick up seats?

HOYER: Ed, I think it`s going to help us pick up seats, particularly
in light of the fact that we`re spending time on something that has no
chance of passage, no chance of enactment, and will take things away from
the American people, and ignoring the principle problem that is confronting
the American people, job creation, a jobs bill.

The president had a jobs bill he sent up here that would create a
million to two million jobs. I have urged Mr. Cantor to put that bill on
the floor. If they don`t like it, vote against it. If they want to amend
it, offer such an amendment on the floor.

But let the House (INAUDIBLE). Let the representatives of the people
vote on a bill which will help create more jobs. We need that, the
American people want that, and that`s what we should be spending our time
on, not wasting our time for the 31st or 32nd or 33rd time on something
that the Republicans know clearly will not pass but simply want to appeal
to their tea party PAC.

SCHULTZ: Well, they ran in 2010 on repeal and replace. They voted to
repeal 33 times. They got nothing on the table, not a single hearing, not
a single proposal. I think it`s a good place for the Democrats to be right

HOYER: I agree with that.

SCHULTZ: Congressman Steny Hoyer, great to have you on "the Ed Show."
Thanks so much.

HOYER: Thank you, Ed.

SCHULTZ: You bet.

HOYER: Good to talk to you.

SCHULTZ: And that`s "the Ed Show." I`m Ed Schultz. The "Rachel
Maddow Show" to starts right now.

Good evening, Rachel.


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