'Up with Steve Kornacki' for Saturday, June 15th, 2013
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UP with STEVE KORNACKI
June 15, 2013
Guests: Ana Marie Cox, Matt Miller, Spencer Ackerman, Steve Clemons, Perry
Bacon, Jr., Celinda Lake, L. Joy Williams, Charmaine Yoest
STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC ANCHOR: A week after disclosing explosive details
about top secret government data mining programs involving phone records
and internet communications, the self-identified leaker, Edward Snowden, is
still believed to be hiding out in Hong Kong.
Hundreds of protesters rallied there today to urge the city`s government to
protect Snowden and not to extradite him to the U.S. On Thursday, FBI
director, Robert Mueller, said authorities will track him down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERT MUELLER, FBI DIRECTOR: He is a subject of an ongoing criminal
investigation. These disclosures have caused significant harm to our
nation and to our safety. We are taking all necessary steps to hold the
person responsible for these disclosures.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Snowden was a computer systems administrator for Booz Allen
Hamilton, a National Security Agency contractor. We learned Thursday that
he used a thumb drive to smuggle top secret documents out of the NSA`s
facility in Hawaii where he worked. And according to the "L.A. Times,"
investigators now say they know how many documents Snowden took and which
servers he took them from.
Snowden outed himself last Sunday just after this show went off the air in
an interview published by "The Guardian." He said he`d been holed up in a
Hong Kong hotel that he leaks the classified information to spark a public
debate about government`s surveillance. Snowden reportedly checked out of
that hotel, The Mira Hotel (ph), on Monday then resurfaced on Wednesday in
an interview with a Hong Kong newspaper, "The South China Morning Post."
And that interview which was conducted at an undisclosed location, Snowden
alleged that the U.S. has been hijack -- has been hacking -- excuse me --
computers in Hong Kong since 2009, and he backed up that claim with what
the paper characterized as unverified documents.
In another article published by the same paper on Thursday, Snowden said of
his actions, quote, "I`m neither traitor nor hero. I`m an American. I
believe in freedom of expression. I acted in good faith, but it is only
right that the public form its own opinion. Political leaders and the
American public are, indeed, forming their own opinions and they are
scrambling party lines.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For somebody to tell the American people the truth is a
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s a traitor. The disclosure of this information
puts Americans at risk.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t see how that compromises the security of this
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Committing civil disobedience is a big step forward.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He should be extradited, arrested, and prosecuted.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He should be prosecuted --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To the full extent of the law.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Very courageous outing, self-outing of Ed Snowden.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Behold the face of evil.
KORNACKI: Right now, I`m joined by Ana Marie Cox, senior political
columnist at "The Guardian," Steve Clemons, Washington editor at large for
"The Atlantic," Spencer Ackerman, national security editor at "The
Gardian," and MSNBC analyst, Matt Miller, columnist for "Washington Post"
and host of public radio`s "left, right, and center." And if ever, there
are a week to have two "Guardian" people --
KORNACKI: I think this is it. Maybe we will find a third before the show
is over. So, it`s interesting. Listening to that sort of montage of
political leaders we played at the end there when we had, you know, sort of
that, what do we call, the tease I had at the beginning, patriot or
traitor. And I guess, my instinct is, you know, there`s got to be some
kind of middle ground.
KORNACKI: Is there somewhere between patriot and traitor where we can sort
of peg, you know, Edward Snowden?
ANA MARIE COX, THE GUARDIAN: Well, it seems like people are throwing the
word traitor around pretty loosely here. I mean, it has a very specific
definition and it`s a pretty serious crime. I mean, whatever he did, it
may be illegal, but I don`t know if traitor is really the right word for
it. I think it`s possible for someone to be both a patriot and to disobey
I mean, simply disobeying law does not make you necessarily a traitor. I
guess, they`re specific ones (ph) or it would. But I think what`s
interesting here is I think politicians are scrambling because the American
public has no real set opinion on this. I mean, politicians would go the
direction the wind was blowing if there was a clear direction of it. And
the American people seem to have sort of ambivalent feelings.
MATT MILLER, MSNBC ANALYST: Can I suggest, grandiose criminal as a phrase?
So, kind of immature (ph), grandiose describing 29-year-old who`s been
frustrated of every step along the way. He joined the army, but the people
who were training him weren`t sufficiently dedicated to trying to make Iraq
a better place. They just wanted to kill Arabs, in his words, you know?
So, we had this kind of self-importance and he clearly broke the law and he
had other options if he wanted to spark a national debate that would have
made him an international celebrity fleeing the country to go somewhere
I also wonder if there`s other shoes that will still dropping us, because
if he`s already talking now about revealing that we hacked into Chinese
computers hundreds of thousands of times, what else is he planning to
reveal, maybe you guys know, maybe you can`t share now that the "Guardian"
is setting the global news agenda, like we said. But, I just think what
he`s done is dead wrong. And the idea that he`s a hero was misguided.
SPENCER ACKERMAN, THE GUARDIAN: Can I jump in here?
ACKERMAN: The focus on Edward Snowden and particularly to call him a
traitor is a tactic to discredit before we even start considering the
importance and the magnitude of what he has disclosed about the blanket
surveillance of Americans` phone and internet data. Focusing on Snowden is
an enormous, enormous distraction.
MILLER: He made us focus on him. What are you talking about?
COX: Every paper that publishes a story about him has a choice about
whether or not to do it. Every politician that focuses on him has a choice
whether or not to do it. I, for one, I mean, we can talk about what a
character he is, and certainly, he`s a character, but as far as the data
goes, I mean, we can`t choose our leakers, you know, like as the American -
- I mean, we can`t -- everyone who leaks something like this is probably
going to be a little cracked, you know? Like, it takes a little bit of
craziness to do something like this.
STEVE CLEMONS, THE ATLANTIC: I think it takes confidence, but I also think
that what --
CLEMONS: -- maybe craziness, but I think, you know, again, we`re talking
about the man, but there`s something here I`ve been wondering about. The
people have been asked what -- did the National Security Agency think that
this was never ever going to be revealed? Was there no action plan that
they had so that once this massive program was revealed?
What you`re getting in the public whether they hug this guy or they hate
the leaker is that there is a market shock to the fact that all our phone
data is going into some massive bank and we live in kind of an Orwellian
world before we were ready to say, yes, the public wasn`t dealt in.
And so what WikiLeaks -- and I`m not the biggest fan of WikiLeaks but what
was Snowden and WikiLeaks and a lot of other leakers have in common is
they`re reacting to the fact that we`ve had a massive expansion of official
secrecy in this country that has gone unfixed. People like me had been
trying to tell the administration get ahead of this, and they have no. So,
we have a reaction driven response to things that I think are almost
MILLER: But hasn`t the phone stuff been public for years? It`s the
access, it`s the prism thing. The access to the internet servers of the
major -- wasn`t that the new news? I thought the NSA phone data mining has
been going on -- it`s been public for six, seven years.
ACKERMAN: There`s been a lot of confusion about these points rather
deliberately first by the Bush administration and then the Obama
administration after it. The extent to which your phone metadata, your
internet communications is being vacuumed up by the national security
apparatus of the United States has never before been even acknowledged, let
alone made public.
MILLER: I thought there`s been reports about the NSA data mining of phone
call stuff for five or six years. Am I wrong about that?
COX: I think the scale of it is what`s new.
CLEMONS: Most people have written about the NSA have the impression, and
it, usually, is the NSA focused on the international system, not that there
was a big black box over the United States is that they were able to go
grab words, grab content, grab selectively, and that for those cases, you
would also have just cause the FISA court which, apparently, to the
president`s mind, legitimates all of this was the way this was done.
No one really conceived of a notion that you would have an open-ended, in
perpetuity legal authorization to grab everything.
KORNACKI: There are a couple different issues. One that I wanted to
follow up and someone said a minute ago, Matt, that was -- you said if
Snowden wanted to get this stuff out and wanted to have this kind of
debate, he had other options. I wonder, what other options were there
given the secrecy of the program?
MILLER: Well, you guys got guys like Ron Wyden who I admire on the Hill
who`s been a real skeptic of what the NSA and the government have done. My
guess is that somebody who wanted to be a whistleblower as opposed to a
criminal could decide to work with Congressional authorities to say here
are the kind of hearings we need to do.
Here`s the kind of stuff we need to do. The idea of just doing a data dump
of all this stuff that is classified that you took a sworn oath not to
KORNACKI: When we say data dump, though, there is a sort of a distinction,
I think, what we can draw between what Snowden did here. There was -- this
was a little more deliberate than, for instance, what was done with
WikiLeaks, what was done with --
KORNACKI: This is somebody who says I don`t want all of this thing.
CLEMONS: This is Daniel Ellsburg (ph), right? This is Daniel Ellsburg
(ph), you know, decades later. Ellsburg did exactly what this guy did.
Ellsburg had access to classified documents that shook the foundation of
United States with what was revealed, and he took great risk and went
through a great process to try to unfold.
But how do you do it -- I would find that those who think we benefitted
from Daniel Ellsburg (ph) and what was revealed and go back and applied to
same criteria to Snowden. You know, are we, as a nation, better off for
having had this discussion when the president of the united States says we
need to have this debate, but the president did nothing to precipitate the
debate. We`re only having the debate because of --
ACKERMAN: Can I speak directly to the question of what the other options
are. And that you mentioned Ron Wyden. I`ve been reporting on Ron Wyden
this issue directly with the senator talking to him extensively for the
last two years specifically on this.
One of the point that Wyden has been making for the last two years even
back to 2008 is that entirely in secret, the government has an
interpretation of the law, specifically, the so-called business records
provision section 215 of the Patriot Act that authorizes vastly more
surveillance than the text of that public law on its face authorizes.
But when I`ve talked to Wyden about this, he`s expressed great frustration
that because even the interpretation of the law, a public law, is
classified, he can`t even begin to talk about this. There`s not a remedy
MILLER: So, did you support what Snowden did? I don`t know the answer.
ACKERMAN: Wyden, because he`s on the Senate Intelligence Committee, is
being very careful. He`s not in favor of the leaking of classified
information. But I think what you will find if you talk to him is that the
available remedies for even senior senators on the committees that are
supposed to oversee the intelligence committee in the House and in the
Senate have experienced deep frustration when they have tried to get the
basic straight answers about out of the intelligence apparatus about what
is happening to the communications of American citizens.
KORNACKI: I want to pick that point up in a minute, because there is --
you know, Steve said -- the president says he welcomes the debate on this,
it`s true. We are only having the debate because somebody breached their,
you know -- they had top secret clearance and they gave the information
public. It`s the only reason we`re having the debate.
So, it raises -- it`s tough to say, well, it`s valuable debate on one hand,
but due -- there have (ph) to be consequences for somebody who violates the
top secret clearance like this. We`ll get into it after this.
KORNACKI: So, I just want to play this sound. This was Edward Snowden
talking to "The Guardian" last week about why he came forward and why he
leaked all this stuff.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EDWARD SNOWDEN, FORMER NSA CONTRACTOR: When you`re in positions of
privileged access, like a system`s administrator for the sort of
intelligence community agencies, you`re exposed to a lot more information
on a broader scale than the average employee, and because of that, you see
things that may be disturbing. That awareness of wrongdoing sort of builds
up and you feel compelled to talk about it.
And the more you talk about it, the more you`re ignored and the more you`re
told it`s not a problem until, eventually, you realize that these things
need to be determined by the public, not by somebody who was simply hired
by the government.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: I`m interested in how to think about, you know, a leaker in a
situation like this, because he says -- he feels this obligation to have
the public make this decision instead of the government, but at a certain
level, he`s making the decision himself. This is somebody who had a top
secret security clearance who`s saying I have these documents and I think
it`s fine for me to violate this clearance and to make them public. And
Steve Clemons, it just seems to me, there should be some kind of
consequence for that, shouldn`t there?
CLEMONS: Well, I do believe -- I mean, I do believe that there`s a case
where we need to review what leakers do and put them up against the measure
of law. So, I believe there needs to be some form of consequences. In a
way, I feel very vexed about this. But I feel at the same thing with a
soldier in the field.
If your commander asked the soldier to do something that would be abhorrent
to human rights or to do something, we`ve, over time, began to build the
system. But in the field, it`s very hard for that person to defect but
maybe the right response from that soldier is to walk away from that
This is not anything different. And I think when someone like Snowden at
least thus far with what we know saw something that he felt and knew it was
so far removed from what Americans thought their government was doing and
then played that role, I do find it very much like Daniel Ellsburg.
KORNACKI: When you talk about Daniel Ellsburg and the Pentagon papers,
this was revealing of lying to Congress.
CLEMONS: The director of national intelligence went to the United States
Senate and gave a hearing and was asked specifically about a program that
would approximate this and Clapper said, no, we`re not doing -- we`re not
wittingly doing what you`re asking. And when Dianne Feinstein was asked on
MSNBC about that issue, she couldn`t even say that he lied (ph). This is,
well, he misspoke. I don`t -- you know, that`s the world we`ve become in.
KORNACKI: But that get -- but it doesn`t that get into a slightly more
complicated situation than the Pentagon papers, though, because the case
that the administration makes here is the Congress was briefed in the
enclosed sessions and what happened with Clapper and Wyden was Wyden in a
public session asking about top secret information --
CLEMONS: We have a problem where there`s been a massive expansion of both
secrecy and executive branch power. And so, there`s certainly true that
other branches of government were complicit in what we had and we have to
ask this fundamental question. If the American people are reacting as they
are today, then there`s something structurally wrong with the equation of
democracy we have.
MILLER: But wait a minute, the whole reason -- look, I understand there`s
always legitimate questions to raise about the extent to which we`re
striking the proper balance between security and privacy, et cetera. But,
this is all in the wake of 9/11. If we`ve had another, God forbid --
KORNACKI: A 12-year-old war.
MILLER: Right, but if we did have -- thanks to diligence, law, whatever,
the work -- and also the work of thousands and thousands of people who are
assigned to protect us. If we had other major attacks in the last dozen
years, this whole conversation would be a luxury. The American people
would expect -- if we had had major attacks and we weren`t using data
mining as a way to --
CLEMONS: You don`t know the norms of a nation until you really watch it
under stress. And I tell you, during the cold war when the Soviet Union
was around, we would never ever have done the kinds -- we would have found
another way to achieve security because we wanted to look different in the
Soviet Union. We wanted to respect human rights --
MILLER: Right, but those are all fair questions, but we`re also in a
different era. Google and Facebook are doing basically the same thing.
If Edward Snowden was a guy who would come out from one of the major
internet companies and said, I can`t, in good conscience, go along with the
fact that everyone`s clicks are being mined, put into algorithms, and sold
for millions of dollars, then the American public might have an outrageous
reaction to that, as well. I understand it`s a difference with government
power, but we`re in a different --
COX: That is the point.
MILLER: It`s not the whole point. If we had other 9/11, you`d be just as
outraged that they hadn`t been using broad data mining to try and identify
potential dangerous people.
ACKERMAN: We might also benefit from technical considerations that the
accumulation of data is, itself, a hindrance to effective targeted
ACKERMAN: Consider that.
COX: There are actually like almost collecting too much data. Like, this
is data for data (ph) collection stake, almost. I mean, I think --
COX: By the way, I really want to reject the idea that you`re telling me,
personally, how it would feel about this kind of collection of --
MILLER: I`m not telling you. I`m hypothesizing how do American people
would feel if we had another major terrorist attack and we weren`t using
every available means --
COX: -- not the same like vacuuming up all this data. And I also think
Steve made a very valuable point, which is that we no longer have a bad guy
to compare ourselves to in terms of civil rights. You know, we just have
this amorphous 12-year long war where we say we`re going to win at any
cost. And that`s a very different picture than the cold war was.
And, we lost the habit of thinking about the United States as having this
define set of values that will -- of which privacy is actually the number
one thing. All of our individual rights stem from the right to privacy.
But I want to go to --
COX: But, the data collection -- I am, actually. But I also think there`s
a fundamental difference between data collection for a commercial purposes
and data collection by a state which can punish me.
KORNACKI: Well, there`s -- I want to get into the --
MILLER: But you`re offended and outraged by the other?
COX: I`m not (ph) offended and outraged. I mean, I`m concerned. But
again, like, Google cannot put me in jail. You know, like the data
collection that`s done --
MILLER: And Google is just trying to make money on you. They`re not
trying to protect you from terrorist attack.
COX: I mean, I feel like I`m --
KORNACKI: We`re going to take a break here. But there`s some -- I want to
get to this, what people make of this because there was some very
interesting polling data on this week that said two very different things
at the same time. We`ll get into that after this.
KORNACKI: So, it`s been interesting to watch how the public has kind of
reacted to this at least through polling. And there were two questions
were polled (ph) that were released this week that really jumped out at me.
This was from a poll that was conducted by CBS News. The first question
they asked was basically the public`s position on the issue of collecting
phone records of ordinary Americans.
If you ask that, approve 38, disapprove 58. It`s not a popular concept.
Now, take that same concept, though, and ask it this way, whether it is
necessary for the government to collect ordinary Americans phone records to
find terrorists, to fight terrorists, suddenly, this thing people don`t
approve of, they now believe is necessary the 53 to 40 score.
And I think a lot of people are trying to just balance these two things.
It`s this distinctive desire for privacy with, you know, hey, have we
prevented anything in the last 12 years that, otherwise, would have
happened? Could something like this had prevented 9/11? And when that`s
introduced into the equation, opinion start to change on this.
ACKERMAN: And this is something that National Security technicians
understand probably better than the general public does because they`re
exposed to it more. The accumulation of data is, in many cases, a
hindrance to solving the problem that these programs are supposed to solve.
The military has been dealing with this over the last several years as
increasingly powerful surveillance tools have become more widespread.
You`re getting vastly more inputs than you have the ability, the man hours,
and the powerful algorithms to sift through it even if you have from an
epistemic premise, the understanding of what it is you should be looking
for. And there tends to be among people who are in high-pressure
situations. I`m taking the NSA in completely good faith, that it`s acting
in completely good faith as it does this for the sake of this discussion.
There`s an impulse as we`ve seen in many other circumstances. My colleague
at "Foreign Policy" magazine, Shane Harris, wrote an excellent book on this
that everyone should read called "The Watchers" as they look for terrorists
and find that they can`t find them and have a tremendous fear that
something will go wrong on their watch, the impulse is to say, it`s because
we don`t have enough inputs.
And so, they gather more. And the impulse to do that is self-perpetuating
and that becomes increasingly a problem with finding the haystack because -
KORNACKI: I have to say that almost feels a little too neat to me that we
can be morally outraged about -- maybe rightfully -- but morally outraged
about the idea of domestic surveillance, about the idea of losing our
privacy, and that, it just so happens that, by the way, this doesn`t help
at all. This actually gets in the way of stopping terrorism. At a certain
ACKERMAN: That`s a better point, isn`t it, Steve?
KORNACKI: But don`t people have -- doesn`t the argument have to be made?
I feel at a certain point if you`re truly, you know, morally outraged about
this, do you have to not make the argument at a certain point that, yes,
you know what, there is a balancing act and you`re going to have to give up
a little bit.
ACKERMAN: My point is an explanation of real situations that the military
and intelligence agencies have been dealing with.
KORNACKI: Do you think it`s possible, though, that attacks have been
prevented because of this?
ACKERMAN: It`s most certainly possible, but I think what`s more important
than conceding what`s certainly possible for the sake of argument is having
the intelligence agencies detail very specifically what they prevented and
how these programs in a unique, in a unique fashion, not saying that
surveillance in general has contributed to stopping the attacks.
CLEMONS: We could all live in the old East Berlin and have tons of
surveillance and change it. What -- I think and we`re also discussing is
today in a way that might have been healthier a few years ago, which is to
look at this, the fact is that American public was not dealt in to these
questions. And now, we`re having the debate we should have had years ago.
Jim Clapper and others are sort of behind the curve in terms of having
thought about how you can begin having a sort of discussion about what the
security tradeoffs are so that those 53 percent of Americans who think it`s
OK could have exhibited that. That is an unfair burden on this
conversation because they didn`t do that.
And we have to ask ourselves, why didn`t they do that and don`t we, as a
nation, in a democracy have the right to have demanded that conversation
KORNACKI: And there is like Dianne Feinstein, for instance, who`s very
supportive of these programs is now saying she wants detailed information
out there in the public about, OK, you`re saying --
CLEMONS: -- were incidents prevented. There are a lot of other questions.
When you think about national security and how it`s deployed, whether it`s
deployed through intelligence like this or sending drones abroad, there may
be innocence wrapped up in these. You may find cases where this capacity
is being used for non-terrorist related stuff. We don`t know. We`re being
told by the government, trust us. But when you do things like we have,
And most of the laws we have in place are not designed for benign
leadership or a good guy like Barack Obama to run in. They`re basically
put in place because we have to fear a bad leader coming in and doing
things. And I would not want to live under a bad leader in this country
with the kinds of norms that we`re showing. And I think --
ACKERMAN: And let`s speak to one more institutional point here that Wyden
-- that his colleague, Mark Udall, that Jeff Merkley, that now --, you
know, as well, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, and others in the senator are talking
about which is that on the face of it, the laws that Congress have passed
to balance surveillance in some way, even if you think they`re too broad
like section 215 business records provision of the Patriot Act, what`s been
described under these programs, what may have reported about these programs
is much broader than what the laws passed by Congress authorize.
And it`s a real big concern for, you know, considering an institutional
remedy, because in private, the government is saying, we can reinterpret
these laws to do what we want to do. But how do you pass another law
binding that surveillance?
COX: I just want to point out like this idea that you have to have like
whether or not you have to have an opinion about whether or not it`s
security that matters or privacy that matters and you have to come down on
one side or the other which is something that you sort of implied a little.
But you know, I don`t think you have to (INAUDIBLE) because it`s an
imperfect world that we live in.
And, sometimes, I think of privacy and security as being kind of an arm`s
race, like we make strides in one and then we make strides in the other.
But as we`re even talking about this, I wonder if it`s more like a market.
And what`s been happening is the government has been operating in a
competition-free market for privacy. You know, like they have like gone
and done all this stuff without like the check of a competition -- they`ve
operated in secrecy without people talking about privacy.
And now that --it`s the bubble has exploded. I mean, what they have done,
they vastly overstepped the bounds that we gave them and they did this
without we know -- without us knowing about it, and now we found out about
it, and it`s almost like we have to like just reign everything back --
MILLER: Can someone explain how they overstep?
MILLER: What actually is the overstepping of the bounds you`re saying? I
KORNACKI: We`re going to answer that right after this.
KORNACKI: All right. May I ask a question, Spencer?
ACKERMAN: Matt asked a very good question about --
MILLER: Thank you, Spencer.
ACKERMAN: Of course, man.
MILLER: Have a croissant.
ACKERMAN: Matt asked a very good question about how the collection done
under these National Security Agency programs exceeds the boundaries of the
public law, section 215, the business records provision of the Patriot Act
and that`s something that Senators Mark Udall, Ron Wyden have been worried
about and been warning about.
The answer is, when you read the law, the language of it says that the
government can collect, quote, "all tangible things relevant to an
investigation in these fields." But the metadata of all Americans for
their phone records, their numbers, the length and duration, their calls,
possibly the locations of those calls aren`t related to an investigation.
They precede an investigation. A really good point by the legal scholar,
Ben Wittes, of the Brookings Institution who tends to be, you now, pretty -
- deferential is too negative word, but tends to be very solicitous and
understanding of the government`s interest in protecting national security
and very vigorous in going back to it.
And he gives them somewhat of a wide berth. He wrote a very interesting
column on Monday in which he said on his blog, Lawfare, that if this broad
metadata collection fits under section 215 is relevant to an investigation,
what is it?
CLEMONS: You also have, I mean, just to further Spencer`s point, the
director of National Intelligence made a remarkable statement which he
believes that the collection of this data does not really require
authorization. In other words, that it`s not the same thing and that is --
you wouldn`t even perhaps need the FISA court in that --
ACKERMAN: So, this is an interesting point that we tried to nail Dianne
Feinstein, the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee on.
One of the points that Gen. Keith Alexander, the head of the National
Security Agency, testified about on Wednesday before the Senate
Appropriations Committee is they`re assuring you, you know, they`ve got
this database, but only under strict conditions can they query it, can they
pulsate to try and find suspicions -- suspected connections only when they
have what they called a reasonable and articulable standard.
Well, the question is, can the NSA query that when they`ve met that state
(ph) unilaterally? Or do they have to go to the secret surveillance court
and get authorization before they query that metadata?
And the answer that Senator Feinstein gave me when I asked her about this
on Thursday is the NSA can do this unilaterally, so what`s the check on
them to -- you know, they are determining for themselves technicians who I
am sure are acting, from your perspective, responsibly, and trying to stop
attacks on the United States.
But they do this unilaterally and they do this in secret. And they do this
under an incredibly vast pool of metadata that they swim in of American
MILLER: Are there specific instances that you guys know of where there`s
been unacceptable outcome from pulling of this stuff? I`m just curious. I
understand the abstract --
COX: That`s the point of the right to privacy.
MILLER: -- point of my question, though.
COX: Right, but it almost doesn`t matter. If we have to say like we`re
going to wait until someone is arrested for a thought (ph) crime to start
to watch out for it, I mean, I think that`s sort of waiting too long. I
ACKERMAN: I can actually answer the question.
MILLER: It would arguably be more disturbing if there had been instances
that are --
KORNACKI: Spencer said he`s got an answer.
ACKERMAN: In June of 2012, Senator Wyden got Director Clapper to
declassify in a broad sense an admission from the director of National
Intelligence Offices that the FISA court found on at least one instance
that the surveillance conducted, it`s unclear specifically where and what
on content on metadata, but the surveillance conducted under these programs
violated the Fourth Amendment at least once.
So, a court that operates in secret that basically exists as a mechanism to
provide surveillance that isn`t an adversarial court and that nearly never
turns down requests for surveillance founded on at least one case that they
could talk about publicly that searching, that surveillance program
violated the Fourth Amendment, Americans right to privacy.
MILLER: So, what`s your preferred reform?
ACKERMAN: I`m a journalist. That`s got to be --
COX: You don`t have to come down on like one side of it.
KORNACKI: This is a good question to end on, though, is where can we go
from here? We talked about Dianne Feinstein and others have called for
disclosure here, and OK, you say attacks have been prevented. Let`s get
some details of those. There`ve been calls for releasing actually the
opinions from the FISA courts, right, on what exactly the legal
justification is for these programs. You know, would that be helpful? Is
there a specific legislative action --
CLEMONS: Good to know what the case studies are of successes and failures
of overreach, of victims in this process, which we haven`t begun to
consider, which I think is always the balance that you have to have. We
always -- you know, everyone wants to kind of lined up the plus column, oh,
you know, this terror attack was prevented, well, which -- you know, which
working families where people were undermined.
And I`ll tell you a very interesting thing. You know, years ago, David
Ignatius wrote a piece in "Washington Post" the other saying, you know,
Snowden (INAUDIBLE) David Ignatius wrote a wonderful novel, I`m not sure
how many people read it (ph) called "Blood Money" and in this novel, it
essentially a couple years ago told this whole story that there was this
associative capacity in government that screen all calls, all financial
records and what happened was a Snowden-like guy, but a Snowden-like guy
who worked for Pakistan was inside this and began using it to kill CIA
agents, so that they were able to follow phone records and plane records
But what he described was there. So, we already have the kind of Jules
Burn (ph) before telling us what was coming. But in the process, that`s
where it gets back to Snowden, because if you have individuals, let`s not
call them ones that are worried about public interest and where we go like
Snowden, but you`ve got people who want to do harm to -- we end up creating
a world of metadata, a big data about how our American (ph) runs, who`s
doing what to whom.
And that is very separated from the rest. It`s enormous power and enormous
capacity without control. And I think that we need to have transparency,
rules, regulations for a very different world of intelligence than we have
KORNACKI: All right. I want to thank Spencer Ackerman of "The Guardian"
for joining us.
KORNACKI: Administration says that Syria has now crossed a red line by
using chemical weapons. That`s next.
KORNACKI: The White House announced on Thursday they will begin to flying
military aide to rebels in Syria, fighting the regime of President Bashar
al-Assad. A sharp escalation of the U.S. involvement in that country`s
bloody civil war. The Obama administration had already been supplying non-
lethal humanitarian aid to the rebels. Syrian rebels welcomed the White
House decision but question whether it will go far enough.
Spokesperson for the free Syrian army told "The Washington Post" yesterday,
quote, "If they send small arms, how can small arms make a difference?
They should help us with real weapons, anti-tank and anti-aircraft and with
armored vehicles, training, and a no-fly zone." Decisions to fly military
aide came on the same day that the White House announced that it now has,
quote, "high confidence the Syrian regime is using chemical weapons against
the rebels, killing up to 150 people."
So far, as many as 93,000 people died in the Syrian war overall. It`s
according to the United Nations. Deputy national security adviser, Ben
Rhodes, said in a statement on Thursday, quote, "The president has said
that the use of chemical weapons would change his calculus, and it has.
The Assad regime should know that its actions have led us to increase the
scope and scale of assistance that we provide to the opposition."
On Tuesday, former president, Bill Clinton, spoke out at a closed-door
forum with Republican senator, John McCain of Arizona who`s been pushing
for the Obama administration to create a military no-fly zone in Syria.
According to a report from "Politico," Clinton told McCain, quote, "Some
people, OK, see what a big mess it is, stay out. I think that`s a big
mistake. I agree with you about this. Sometimes it`s just best to get
caught trying as long as you don`t overcommit."
Appearing Friday at "Morning Joe," Clinton downplayed suggestions that he
was disagreeing with President Obama and said he was simply answering a
question during the forum when he made his remarks on Syria. He also
praised the Obama administration`s decision to provide military aid to the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: There are some
logistical complications as you might imagine in getting all those --
getting more support into them and he wants to talk to our allies and see
whether they can help on that, this upcoming G8 meeting. It looks to me
like this thing is treading in the right direction now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: I want to bring in MSNBC contributor, Perry Bacon Jr. He`s a
political editor for our sister site, TheGrio.com. You know, I guess, it`s
all outward signs as I look at this. This is something that the president
is doing and the administration is doing very reluctantly. This is
something they have -- a moment they sort of tried to avoid and it almost
feels like they feel compelled to do something and they`re doing --
CLEMONS: They want to act like they`re doing something.
KORNACKI: But this is the least they can do, right?
CLEMONS: Well, I think so because of the chemical weapon thing. You know,
I was on the White House call that Ben Rhodes did the other day and there
are a couple of questions that were not answered. I mean, the reason the
president did not move forward on the question of chemical weapons use was,
one, they used to say what was the chain of custody? What was the chain of
I kept asking if we should have signals intelligence that tells us how the
Syrian command staff reacted to these revelations one way or another. We
didn`t have that discuss. And I also think that there`s another important
question. 150 people of this very incident (ph) using chemical weapons is
-- you know, it`s horrible to say this, but it`s a low number.
And so, what do we know about why they use chemical weapons in such a minor
way. So, there are a lot of questions about that that I think. And then
the bigger question I also don`t think that people getting to is at getting
more deeply involved in Syria. You know, hundred thousand people, nearly,
93,000 people have died. And so, there`s clearly a humanitarian question.
But the question is, how does that fit into the broad American strategic
interest when you clearly have a sectarian civil war under way, and on top
of that, you have the potential for a very nasty proxy war between
ourselves and other players in the region.
And unless you can answer those questions strategically, just throwing
yourself, your people, your advisers, your money, even weapons, small or
large, doesn`t answer that large question of where does it fit
strategically and are we running the risk of a slippery slope that takes us
back into situation where the neighbors look at us as constraining American
power and not leveraging America.
The best thing that we have in U.S/Iran relations is withdrawing from
Afghanistan, because they begin to see, wow, America has more assets to
shape the international system. If we get drawn down into another pit,
that sends signals that we`re going to militarily overextended or
distracted again. And I think those are the things the White House has not
MILLER: I mean, this is really -- it`s a very tough situation because it
does feel like they`re trying to thread some political needle that is so
imperfect in so many ways, because I have the same reaction which is 90,000
people have been killed already and now is the last 150, because of this
awful, you know, use of chemical weapons potentially that now we`re going
to do something.
On the other hand, you can imagine why they feel like they have to show
some marker in the international community that if you cross that line,
we`re going to do something, but we`re not going to do too much. And I
think Clinton, his whole thing was, I think he looks back at the Balkans.
He looks back at Rwanda and feels like he waited too long. And his actual
formulation of it`s better -- sometimes it`s better to get caught trying is
the kind of perfect political formulation.
CLEMONS: -- what didn`t run on that clip was, you know, the most powerful
part of it and the most absurd was Obama will look foolish.
CLEMONS: You don`t make strategic decisions about life and death and
deployed people over the way things look. You have to ask that, you know,
cold-eyed question of how do you win or how do you move forward.
And you know, in this particular case with the rebels, you know, the broad
question -- you know, Ben Rhodes is quoted in the paper this morning
saying, you know, we`d know a lot more about the content and direction of
the Syrian resistance than we did six months ago, so that we can get in and
help. And one of the things I found interesting because we don`t know the
The White House went out of its way and say we do not know the inventory of
what we`re going to be sending, but then, said clearly, we`re going to do
things that help increase the cohesiveness and the traction of the Syrian
resistance. Well, part of that Syrian resistance and part of the heroes
(ph) of the revolution crowd are the Al-Nusra Front and very, very hard
line and hard core Islamists.
And I -- we also don`t know how. We talk about this Syrian resistance
monolithically. And what I hear in the paper today from Ben Rhodes who`s a
great guy and smart is, nonetheless, we`re still trying to pick winners and
losers inside the Syrian resistance about who we will deal with. And I
think that`s a problem.
KORNACKI: Well, this is -- isn`t this -- Syria today is, what, Iraq ten
years ago, Lebanon 30 years ago. I mean, this is sort of sectarian
violence breaking out --
CLEMONS: Well, it will be particularly if the infrastructure of the Syrian
state collapses. And that`s Secretary John Kerry`s biggest concern. It`s
the Saudis biggest concern. I mean, all the players (ph) are worried. You
know, the Saudis are actually -- they`ve got a little directorate that`s
trying to call people inside the Syrian government, bureaucrats and say,
If Assad ends up falling or going, we want you to stay in the country to
help continue to run the country and we will protect you from the rage that
comes later and being responsible, because they`re very worried that the
collapse of the state, disintegration of the state, will create Iraq-like
situations that --
MILLER: -- that the king of Jordan showed some demonstration of a map that
there`d be some vast tracks of desert land. It would be like the Pakistani
no man`s land where al Qaeda would be able to operate freely.
CLEMONS: Matt, you estimated --
MILLER: It`s tough, it`s scary.
KORNACKI: Well, you guys took an interesting question a minute ago about
why is that 150 people who were hurt, who were killed by the chemical
weapons, why does that matter more than 90,000? There may be a polling
answer to that, and we`ll show it after this.
KORNACKI: So, I just wanted to show some polling on the Syria situation
which I think partly explains why the Obama administration is reluctant to
get in, because there`s no appetite publicly in this country for this.
This is what to do in Syria. This is representative of all the polls you
see out there. Just humanitarian, that`s the most popular. No action, you
know, 24 percent. You add those together, two out of three people are
saying nothing or humanitarian.
Only 15 percent, you know, start talking about military action and arms,
you know, 11 percent. The interesting thing, though, is when you ask the
question, if it can be established, if it can be proven that Assad has used
chemical weapons, would you favor, you know, a military intervention, and
suddenly, those numbers -- I don`t think we have it up there, I just saw it
ten minutes before the show.
It jumps to like 65-66 percent. So, that term chemical weapons -- how that
was used the weapons of mass destruction -- to sell the Iraq war ten years
ago, the potency of, wow, there`s an evil, you know, dictator out there
using chemical weapons against his people, that still stirs and moves
public opinion in this country.
PERRY BACON, JR., THEGRIO.COM: It does. It`s also the thing the president
said. He kept talking about red line (INAUDIBLE) last year over and over.
So, I think the public is going to prime to hear those terms and think
about it in that way and that`s kind of what pushed him this week. April
18th, the British and the French said chemical weapons are being involved
here. Once that happened, I think that was actually -- you know, we talked
about Bill Clinton.
Bill Clinton did really -- his comments are coming and the president
already pretty much decided this as they talked about yesterday. They had
already decided this and the reason was, once the British and the French
said that that kind of put us on this path where he can no longer stay out
of it as long as he wanted to. The key question, though, I think they`re
trying to figure out at the White House, is this Libya?
Is this Bosnia? Is this Kosovo? Or is this Iraq? They think it`s more
like Iraq and I`m not sure that`s exactly right, but that`s kind of the
calculus they -- throughout this. They think it`s like Iraq, too many at
the groups, too complicated, not easy to solve. And it might be like if
you saw -- if you had a poll of Libya last year. I think Libya`s support
for like (INAUDIBLE) too, but that still worked. I think it`s not
necessarily the public is where that the president, himself, is very aware.
KORNACKI: And if the risk is in Iraq, if the risk is Lebanon, that sort of
situation, you dip your toe in the water, how do you get out?
CLEMONS: I think getting out is the big issue, but you have to understand
the president was deploying his time where he wants to be focused, which is
in a summit with Xi Jinping focused on China.
And they are trying to keep a small footprint in Syria and in the broader
Middle East, you know, for their so-called Asia pivot because they look at
the fact that the growth and gains to the U.S. economy are going to be more
come from Asia and where Matt lives in Pacific Palisades in California,
that range of the world. And you`ve got to be --
MILLER: We`re driving to New York now.
CLEMONS: The thing that is very interesting to me and I don`t know yet if
the White House is making a very, very bad calculation here. The White
House has been trying to -- you know, Libya was a cheap tipping point
thing. And there were certain criteria that mattered to Tom Donilon, the
president`s national security adviser in terms of pushing before they came
in. It was not a reckless decision (ph).
The key in this case is chemical weapons, but still, how do you -- if it`s
a chemical weapons driven strategy, then what`s the strategy to secure
chemical weapons or to deal with creating a surgical accountability for
those who led the use of those as opposed to becoming part of the war and
beginning to invest more deeply and getting into a regime change deployment
of any kind, or advice.
That`s a very different question, a very different set of commitments than
dealing with how you deal with the chemical weapons. I thought the White
House given Libya and given how they maintained a small footprint of what
they did would take a more chemical weapons focus strategy. Israelis, the
Israelis have been very, very restrained in this region.
I have a lot of respect. They have intervened, they bombed, but very, very
distantly. I thought that`s where the White House -- the White House is in
its rhetoric gone beyond that.
KORNACKI: All right. I`d like to thank Steve Clemons of "The Atlantic"
magazine and MSNBC analyst, Matt Miller. Pacific Palisades, I didn`t know
that. Nice place.
MILLER: Secret site.
KORNACKI: The America voted for Barack Obama twice probably won`t be the
America that votes in 2014. I`ll explain that, next.
KORNACKI: Sonny Bono back in the late 1960s, I think that was Cher with
him, as well. She was his wife. They were international celebrities,
times were good.
But it wasn`t too long before stardom started to fade for Sonny Bono. By
the mid-1970s, Sonny and Cher had divorced their television show was
canceled and Sonny Bono became sort of a has-been. It`s a kind of has-been
who went on to guest star not only guest star on "Love Boat", but also
"Fantasy Island", the rare one-two punch.
That`s what Sonny`s post-Sonny and Cher career was his like until he
discovered politics. He ran for mayor of Palm Springs, California, in
1988, and then in 1994, he ran for Congress as a Republican, because 1994
was a very good year to be a Republican -- Newt Gingrich, Contract with
America, you know the deal -- he won that race, too.
So, it was a nice little comeback story. Sonny Bono had matured. He
started a new life with a wife and a family. He reinvented himself and
now, he was a member of Congress. He also still had a sense of humor,
which Washington pretty quickly fell in love with.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. SONNY BONO (R), CALIFORNIA: I was fortunate enough to get married,
again, and marry a beautiful woman, my wife, Mary. She`s here. We have
two kids. So, I didn`t care. I had a great-looking wife and she`s way
better looking than Cher and --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The sad part is that there was an awful skiing accident a few years
after that and it took Sonny Bono`s life. That was in 1998 and obviously
opened up his congressional seat, too.
There was a special election and Democrats picked, I`m not making this up,
a washed up celebrity of their own, Ralph Waite. He was better known as Pa
Walton from the Waltons. A Republicans went with, well, they went with
Sonny Bono`s widow, Mary Bono. And the race wasn`t actually close. It was
a Republican district, there was a lot of sympathy.
Mary Bono won in the landslide. It turned that she liked being in
Congress, so she kept running for re-election and she kept winning.
And then came last year. Mary bono, actually Mary Bono Mack, she gotten
remarried and she changed her name, set out to run for re-election in 2012.
Her opponent, Raul Ruiz, a Democrat who worked as an emergency room doctor.
Most people thought Mary Bono Mack would win, again. That`s what she
When California held its new jungle primary for Congress last June, she
finished way ahead of Ruiz. Here`s the result -- this is a lopsided
victory. Again, this was a jungle primary, which means that all the
candidates, no matter what party they`re from, they ran from the same
ballot. And the top would then go on to run in November election.
In this case, there were only two candidates to start with. So, the
primary was like a test run for the general election. As you can see,
there was plenty of breathing room for Mary Bono Mack heading into that
general election, most people figured she would win again in November. But
look closer at those primary results. Look at the total number of votes
that were cast, about 90,000. It`s not a huge number for a race like this.
When you`re talking about 90,000 voters in a congressional race, you`re
talking about the voters who tend to show up most reliably. Those voters
tend to be older. They tend to be whiter. They tend to be more Republican
friendly, the die-hards, and they showed up in California`s June primary
But the voters who showed up in November looked different. There were more
of them. A lot more of them. They were younger, they were more browner,
they were more Democratic friendly. Redistricting had added tens of
thousands of Latinos to California`s 44th district, and they turned out
This is what happened. Mary Bono Mack lost. She lost decisively. She
lost by more than 13,000 votes. She lost even though she won the primary
easily. She lost because turnout in the general election was over 200,000.
More than twice what it had been in June.
She lost because the Obama coalition that stayed home in June turned out in
November. In her story, the story of Mary Bono Mack political demise
illustrates this story of American electoral politics at this moment in
history. The American electorate is really right now two separate
electorates. Each defined by increasingly clear and stark cultural
geographic and ethnic boundaries.
Right now, those two electorates are not equally engaged in the process.
The Republican friendly electorate, the older, whiter electorate turns out
pretty much no matter what. The Democratic friendly electorate,
millennial, single women, non-whites, urban professionals, only really
turns out when there is a presidential election.
Do you want to know why the same America that kicked dozens of Democrats
out of Congress in 2012 re-elected Barack Obama by almost 5 million votes
in 2012? Look at these numbers. In 2010, just 12 percent of voters were
under 30. In 2012, it was almost 20 percent. In 2010, 21 percent of
voters were over 65 compared to only 17 percent in 2012.
And in 2010, the electorate was only 23 percent nonwhite. In 2012 that
number exploded to 28 percent, the most ever. This has been the story for
a while now. But the trend is accelerating.
Look at this, about a decade ago, both senior citizens and people under 30
were voting Democratic at about the same clip. More young people are more
Democratic than ever. Senior citizens are moving away from that number
As Dave Wasserman, the numbers expert at the Cook Political Report, put it
recently, partisan habits are more polarized by age and race than ever.
These are the stakes for the next big election in 2014.
Will Democrats, can Democrats find a way to motivate the Obama coalition to
neutralize or start to neutralize the leg up that Republicans have come to
enjoy in mid-term elections? It has huge policy implications.
If Republicans think they`re going to win big in 2014 anyway, what
incentive do they have to change right now? If they do win big in 2014,
will they be emboldened to push farther to the right, not just in Congress,
but in state capitals across the country.
With me to address those questions, we have Ana Marie Cox of "The
Guardian", L. Joy Williams, political strategist with LJW Community
Strategies, MSNBC contributor Perry Bacon Jr., and Celinda Lake, president
of the Democratic polling firm Lake Research Partners.
Celinda, I`ll start with you. You work in numbers every day. When I sat
down and looked at this data --
KORNACKI: We knew that all along and that`s why we picked you.
CELINDA LAKE, LAKE RESEARCH PARTNERS: Exactly right.
KORNACKI: But it is amazing to me that you have these two groups now. You
have senior citizens and young people who have just completely split apart
and one is identified so strongly with the one party and the other with the
other party and the, basically, question is: who is showing up at the polls
LAKE: Well, and just to add to your point, let`s remember that Barack
Obama lost senior citizens in 2008 and 2012. And that Barack Obama, for
the first time in 2012, lost voters 50-64. So, if the electorate had been
in the 2010 electorate. He would have lost the election.
And then the numbers are astounding when you go by state. For example,
Florida, a key target state for all of us, 51 percent of the electorate
older in 2012, 66 percent of the electorate older in 2010. There are
things we have to do. Barack Obama spent $1 billion getting out that vote.
It isn`t just the presidency, it`s the machine behind the presidency.
And then the second thing is the Republicans did a lot to motivate that
vote. You know, if you had said to me, let`s talk about the election.
Let`s start by redefining rape and then let`s outlaw birth control and then
let`s ban Planned Parenthood, let`s outlaw rape again, I would have said,
Steve, great idea, but you got to stop drinking on the subject.
It was the gift that kept on giving, but look at where they started this
year, already -- record number of restrictions on abortion, opposing
minimum wage in the states. I mean --
KORNACKI: Yes, you`re perfectly setting up a discussion that we`re going
to have in a little bit. So, we`re going to take too much from that. But,
L. Joy, when you look at this, does the basic challenge for Democrats
approaching 2014 our base to turn out, you know, in equal numbers or close
to equal numbers with Republicans, we`re looking at losing ground in
Congress and there`s huge implications from that. Do you see Democrats
responding to that challenge at this point?
L. JOY WILLIAMS, POLITICAL STRATEGIST: Unfortunately, no. It`s sort of
the same situation that we were leading into 2010 to begin with. Sort of,
you know, everybody thought by having these voters on the rolls that we
would easily be able to just pull them out. Someone who has done
operations before, it`s not that easy. Just because you have someone
registered and all you have to do is pull them out on Election Day. It
doesn`t work like that.
What Celinda mentioned, you know, what continues to help is sort of the
content that is coming from the other side, right? So, the continued push
on abortion and restriction and, gay marriage, all of those issues are very
h button issues that not only rouse up their base in support of them, but
then also rowels up the Democrats and make sure these are preserved. And
not to mention how the changing in voting contributed to that. So, we`re
not even talking about some of those things that are still on the books
that were passed, you know, for the 2012 elections that still will have an
impact going into the 2014 election.
KORNACKI: So, I`m hearing, you know, from both of you. Look at sort of
the overreach of Republicans and you want to fight that and you want to
prevent that. But is there, is there an affirmative message that the
Democrats can put out there. I mean, you look back at 2010, we just did
health care and that didn`t seem to -- that didn`t seem to inspire the
ANA MARIE COX, THE GUARDIAN: Right, I do think it`s true. I mean, for the
moment, we`re not them. If they don`t stand for stuff you don`t like, we
stand for stuff that you like. I mean, 2012, I actually want to point that
it`s almost like the two electorates we have are the off-year electorate
and the on-year electorate. And you can win or you can win the other.
But right now, where we are right now, it seems like can`t win votes
because they`re so different. I think that`s going to mean that again, in
2014, we see -- I think we`re going to see some conservative gains. I
think we`re going to -- that`s where they`re made. They`re made in the
state houses. They`re made in off-year elections because that`s where they
can get their vote out.
I don`t know how long this can continue, except that that off-year
electorate is literally dying off.
PERRY BACON, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: I would know that the Democrats in the
Senate are obsessed. I was talking with the DNCC earlier this week. They
were talking about Louisiana and North Carolina, particularly. They are
focused on how to get the black vote out. We know North Carolina, one in
three Democrats who voted for Obama African-American and make sure they
turn out those numbers equally.
So, they know this and their argument is these national numbers are one
thing. If you drill down and look at some states, Democrats have done
pretty well. Look at Missouri in 2008, Obama campaigned hard there in
2008. Black vote about 12 percent.
2012, Obama did not campaign at all in Missouri, Clare McCaskill still got
about, 16 percent of the electorate was black (INAUDIBLE). So the
Democrats are showing some states that they when they know they have to get
out the group, the part of the electorate than figure that out. They are
looking at that. They know it is a big challenge.
WILLIAMS: But I would continue, also a -- in the sort of broader,
progressive coalition with the Democrats, as well, is that progressives in
general, whether or not connected to a party have to do a better job of
conducting with people.
You know, we only do the presidential elections from the larger progressive
coalition piece. And that`s always to our detriment because then we spend
the rest of our time fighting what`s going on from the governors, fighting
what`s going o from the state legislatures because we`re not really doing
the broader coalition work of making sure we are increasing turnout and
doing things across all the state to bring that progressive coalition out
on off years.
KORNACKI: Perry mentioned a moment ago on the Senate side how Democrats
are trying to address this. There`s a very interesting story this week
about a particular challenge Democrats on the House side are facing. We`ll
do that after this.
KORNACKI: So, Steve Israel, the Democratic congressman from New York. He
also chairs the Democratic National Campaign Committee. His job to recruit
candidates for the House in 2014. And so, he`s facing that basic
demographic challenge that we`ve been outlining.
He gave an interview this week to BuzzFeed and he talked about a very
particular challenge he`s facing in recruiting candidates. He said, "We
have some recruits who say, you know, I don`t know if I want to do in `14,
but if Hillary Clinton runs in 2016, I`m in. Why is that?" Israel says.
"Because Clinton won those blue dog districts when he was president."
So, he`s talking about this -- these are the districts, the reason such a
Republican tsunami in 2010 was, you know, these marginal districts,
Republican friendly districts a lot of times, you know, South and in the
Midwest where, yes, Bill Clinton, you could look back at 1992 and 1996 and
you could say, we carried these. Hillary Clinton in the primaries in 2008
because she carried him and you have Democrats now basically saying, hey,
I`m not sure the demographics are going to be there for me in 2014, but
with Hillary at the top of the ticket, maybe I will in 2016.
BACON: These Democrats are right but not for the reason they`re giving.
You`re better to run as a Democrat during a presidential year because young
voters and minorities turn out in every way more. So, that`s smart.
The notion -- there`s the notion talking about all the time about politics
going on and there`s a view that Hillary Clinton might win in 2016 because
bill won in 1992. One or two things different in politics -- Bill Clinton
won in `92, Tennessee, `96, as well -- Tennessee and Kentucky. That`s not
-- I don`t think Hillary Clinton is going to win Tennessee and Kentucky.
The electorate has changed. Blue dog districts are not where Democrats are
going to make the gains. They`re going to make the gains in suburban
places like Philadelphia, like in New York and beating members like that in
places where their coalition actually exists. They aren`t a lot of, like,
the Obama coalition voters in these blue dog districts. They lost in 2010.
That`s not where the gains are going to come.
LAKE: Hillary going to generate her own coalition, too. I agree with you
about the suburban. With Hillary running, I think you see record high
support turn out among women.
And the other group that`s in your coalition is unmarried voters,
particularly unmarried women who drop off dramatically in off-year
elections and come back. Hillary also has dramatic appeal among unmarried
women. So, I think we`re going to pick up a whole bunch of districts in
2016 when she`s on the ticket, but they are going to be suburban districts
we pick up with women.
KORNACKI: To Perry`s point, I wonder, you know, this has been sort of a
debate in the Democratic Party now since Clinton`s days, since Al Gore`s
days. Those states, you know, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee,
Arkansas, these are states that Bill Clinton carried twice actually in the
1990s and Democrats have not been carrying recently.
Has the Democratic Party, in your view, reached a point where they just
sort of say basically, strategically, we`re moving on and we`re looking for
coalition somewhere else?
WILLIAMS: I don`t necessarily agree with abandonment.
KORNACKI: I`m trying to put it delicately here.
LAKE: We have Democratic governors in some of those states.
KORNACKI: But they succeed by running against the national party.
LAKE: But I also think the messaging is where that plays a role in terms
of being able to identify a message with working class white voters in some
of these places where they share some of our economic values and we have to
be able to communicate a message that we share these values, particularly
on economics, particularly on jobs and on taxes and sort of those things
that will be able to sort of broaden the coalition.
Now, whether or not we go and spend $1 billion in those places, you know, I
think a waste of money. But definitely, we have to think about messaging
and going forward to bring those into that coalition.
COX: I mean, I think with this change between the on year and off year
electorate, I think those blue dog districts are becoming just blue
districts. They want a real Republican, not like that kind of Democrat
that was a blue dog Democrat. That is just disappearing from Congress in
WILLIAMS: And because, just the atmosphere is so partisan, so, you know,
so strictly partisan. It`s going to be interesting going forward. As we
get 2016, are we going to be able to shift that?
COX: I think that interesting that people who don`t want to run now
because they want to run under Hillary, because they think Hillary is going
to be in this moderate Democrat vote.
The electorate and the candidates are probably going to be more liberal in
2016. I think we`re going to push to the left now.
KORNACKI: Yes, go ahead.
BACON: People will view Hillary differently when she`s on the ticket. I
remember being in Missouri with Barack Obama in Missouri, where he can`t
walk and Claire McCaskill wanted to be standing besides him. That will not
happen today because he`s the president, he`s unpopular, he`s the
Democratic standard bearer.
Hillary Clinton has 60 percent approval ratings when she`s running for
president on the ticket as the nominee with Republicans saying every day
how horrible she is, if she is the nominee. The notion that Hillary
Clinton will always be as popular as she is now is like insanity.
KORNACKI: I also wonder about the Democrats talking this way about running
for the House. They forget the other part of the Clinton years, which is
he won those states in `92 and `96, Democrats got wiped out in those states
So, you can go win your House seat, with Hillary Clinton in 2016, maybe
what happened in the 2018 midterms?
LAKE: You know, this is the thing. These off-year elections have the
coattails. Everybody thinks the coattails are in presidential years. No,
in presidential years people make a distinction. I`m voting for the
president and making a different decision for Congress. And in off-years,
when they can`t get at the conference (INAUDIBLE) where they are, they take
it out on the Congress people.
KORNACKI: All right. I want to thank Harry Bacon, Jr. of TheGrio.com.
Did the Republicans just awaken a powerful force in time for next year`s
election? We`ll talk about it, next.
KORNACKI: We`ve been talking about the two very different American
electorates. The Republican friendly one out from midterm elections and
the Democratic friendly one that turns out in presidential years.
The Democrats are hoping that something happened this week will help change
that math in 2014. It happened on Wednesday in a House Judiciary Committee
hearing on a Republican bill to ban abortions nationwide after 20 weeks.
The Democrats in the committee opposed the bill, but Representative John
Conyers from Michigan, he`s the committee`s ranking Democrat, offered to
make an exception for cases of rape and incest.
That prompted the bills, Arizona Republican Trent Franks to object.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. TRENT FRANKS (R), ARIZONA: Before when my friends on the left side of
the aisle here tried to make rape and incest a subject because, the
incidents of rape and resulting in pregnancy are very low. But when you
make that exception -- when you make that exception, there`s usually a
requirement to report the rape within 48 hours.
And in this case, it`s impossible, because this is in the sixth month of
gestation. And that`s what completely negates and vitiates the purpose for
such an amendment.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: So, it`s another Republican politician kicking up controversy by
talking about rape. Within hours, pro-choice groups send out e-mails and
Democrats eagerly pounced. Frank`s comment is just the loudest example of
politics returning to the spotlight.
Earlier this week, the Obama administration dropped its efforts to block
over-the-counter access to emergency contraception for women and girls of
all ages. Wisconsin on Wednesday, the legislature passed a bill mandating
ultrasounds for abortions, typically done transvaginally in the first
In Iowa, Republican Governor Terry Branstad soon sign a state budget that
would give him the power to approve or deny funding on a case-by-case basis
from Medicaid eligible abortions. And Ohio is moving forward a budget that
would defund Planned Parenthood.
Overall, there has been a record number of new state level abortion
restrictions enacted over the past two years, 92 in 2011 and 43 in 2012.
I want to bring in Charmaine Yoest, president and CEO of Americans United
for Life and senior adviser to the 2008 Mike Huckabee presidential
Thanks for joining us.
So, there`s lot here and I think I want to get to the state level stuff
eventually, but I want to start with what`s going on in Congress this week
where Republicans are pushing the 20-week ban, ban on abortions over 20
weeks. And we should know, it looks like Marsha Blackburn who`s Republican
congresswoman from Tennessee, is sort of going to be taking over the
management duties of that bill. No longer be Trent Franks after what we
just showed and it looked like the Republicans are also going to give in on
this idea of having a rape exception built into this ban.
There`s a lot here, but I wonder at a basic level. You have a Democratic
Senate and you have a Democratic president, what is the point right now in
your view -- even though you are prolife, what is the point of advancing
something that is going no where legislatively?
CHARMAINE YOEST, AMERICANS UNITED FOR LIFE: I think it`s really
interesting and good that you started by looking at the states and then
putting this federal action into context of how much pro-life legislation
is moving at the state level.
Americans United for Life, we`re the legal architects of the pro-life
movement. And over the last two years, we`ve been involved in the passage
of 50 pieces of model legislation that working with pro-life legislatures
at the state level. So, what you`re very accurately laying out here, this
disjunction between what is going on at the state level and what`s going on
on the federal level.
So, part of this is helping to illustrate how out of touch national level
policy is with where the American people are. You know, one of the great
things about America is the laboratories of democracy and the people
through their representatives at the state level are really speaking and
their frustration is coming out in the state legislature.
KORNACKI: So, you`re saying the model of public opinion, so, saying the
American people want this because the American people elected Republicans -
- doesn`t that get to the point we were making about the different
electorates that turned out because the elected officials who are doing
these things that state level were elected by the 2010 electorate. Which,
this is how politics works. Whoever shows up gets to vote and whoever wins
makes the decisions.
But is that really representative of where everybody in this country is
relatively narrow slice of the electorate that turned out?
YOEST: Well, I did find your earlier conversation very interesting because
I think there`s been so much misinterpretation of the November elections
and where the American people are. Because one of the untold stories from
November is that we actually as a pro-life movement actually picked up
strength in state legislatures across the country.
It was not a loss, necessarily for the pro-life movement. Obviously, it
was kind of heartbreaking to see the most pro-abortion president we`ve ever
had come back into the White House. But that`s also relevant as well,
because what I would argue to you, Steve and ladies, is that this president
has really, really overreached on the abortion issue. His positions are so
radical and so aggressively pro-abortion that he`s alienating large swaths
of the American public.
COX: But he`s not alienating anyone he has not already alienated. I think
that`s an important point.
YOEST: That`s true.
COX: At the state level, some interesting things happened, which is that,
yes, you`re right there, were gains at the state level for pro-life
candidates, but in those states that had the strongest of sort of pro-life
representation, the most extreme pro-life bills come forward, like in
Pennsylvania. That`s where you saw the female vote really turn out for
I mean, it was where -- I mean, when you are talking about something like
life, it`s hard to say overreach. When you talk about abortion is wrong,
you`re not overreaching, so I want to respect -- I don`t want to call what
these legislatures are doing are overreach. They`re doing something
inconsistent with their values.
However, when women in those states see that, they do tend to react. And
in those states where women turned out for Obama in bigger numbers.
YOEST: That`s a really -- I like your differentiation about what is
overreaching and what is not. It is hard because you just listed off a
huge list of pro-life legislation that`s moving forward. And I think one
of the questions that the pro-life movement is putting out there that we
never, ever get an answer from, from big abortion and the abortion lobby --
is there any restriction on abortion that we can agree on?
For example, we were involved in helping to pass the first ever ban on sex
selection abortion answer and abortion for genetic abnormalities in North
Dakota, and you would not believe the fire storm that we`ve kicked up. And
I just want to look at that and say, you know what, if the abortion lobby
cannot come alongside and say it`s OK to pass a ban on aborting a little
baby because she`s a girl, then they are really out of touch with where the
American people are.
So, of course, you can come up with examples of where there was a bill that
did not gather a whole lot of support. But what I would argue to you is
that by saying that there is not a single piece of legislation --
KORNACKI: But there`s a lot -- I want to put this here, there`s a lot more
that happened in North Dakota than just that. I will pick up after this.
KORNACKI: L. Joy, I know you want to get in. I want to point out quickly,
North Dakota came up there. And North Dakota now, we should just point
out, is a state that has the most restrictive state-level law on abortion
in the country, which was basically this fetal heart beat bill that went
through this year where it basically says no abortion allowed in North
Dakota after six weeks. Just want to get that out there, a thought before
the break. What else were you about to say?
WILLIAMS: So, there`s a number of things here. I think, particularly, in
how the issue is framed because we just saw polling over the last week that
came out in terms of the American people and how they feel about abortion.
And I think if we start off with the first premise that this is a choice
that women and their families make and that is a choice that they should
make personally -- I can say here, like, I don`t believe in abortion for
myself, personally. But for someone else that may be the choice that they
need to make.
And the difference with how this legislation and how these restrictions are
being put off is that we are restricting your choice and restricting your
decision and your family`s decision on whatever it is you like.
I say all the time to people, I had the personal situation of being in a
hospital room, being pregnant and tell me either you die or your baby dies
-- what qualifies? Any of these politicians men or other people to make
this decision, be in the hospital room with me and making that decision
that is put before women. That`s the difference in terms of the framing of
this issue. If someone`s personal choice, based upon their current
circumstances on what they need to make, that`s what women are pushing back
on. Whether or not they agree with abortion or not, on whether or not
their personal belief.
So, when you`re pushing forth the legislation whether it`s six weeks, 20
weeks, you have to get a vaginal ultrasound and it`s government, again,
going contrary against a conservative belief coming in this hospital room
with you to help you make a decision that should be only yours.
YOEST: Here`s my, here`s my concern, L. Joy. But is it an informed
choice? Is a woman who is in a crisis situation -- I mean, look, the
polling data is really clear. No woman wakes up one morning and says, I`m
joyfully going to trundle off to the abortion clinic.
She is there because it is a crisis in her life and is it an informed
choice? Is she being told all of her options? Is she being told the
ramifications how abortion harms women, and the data out there now that is
undisputable about how abortion harms women and the long-term effects of
WILLIAMS: That`s not undisputable.
In terms of the informed decision, look, the legislation that`s being
proposed and passed is not making sure that she has all of the information.
It sticks something up for her. It`s make sure she can see this on the
LAKE: Who is to decide the information? A doctor, not a politician.
WILLIAMS: And making sure that the information, the information is clear.
That it is accurate. That it is medically accurate. All of that, that
information, that is not what is being proposed and that`s not what is
being passed, right?
So, having, yes, I had an informed decision from my doctor who was in the
room. Why does a politician in Washington decide to tell him it`s just --
recently in Ohio another article that a doctor has to then tell me how much
money he makes by performing abortions and how much he wouldn`t be able to
make if he`s not. Why is that information necessary in, as you say, a
woman who may be in crisis, but there are also woman who may not be in
crisis. There is data of women who already have children that are having
Who decides that?
LAKE: Another thing I would like to say here is that this is, what is the
priority of this? These legislatures are bogged down. Montana state
legislature two years ago, the first 13 bills on abortion -- excuse me, the
governor of Iowa is going to sit there? There`s nothing else going on in
Iowa that he has time to decide for every low-income women whether the
insurance should cover, he has nothing better to spend his time on?
Voters are upset this is the priority when we have so many other problems
KORNACKI: Well, that gets to -- there`s a really interesting quote from a
Republican congressman from Pennsylvania. With the House this week
debating this, you know, 20-week ban on abortion. This is Charlie Dent, a
Republican in Pennsylvania, who said this week in "Roll Call", "I`ll be
very frank. I discouraged our leadership from bringing this to a vote on
the floor. Clearly, the economy is on everyone`s mind. We`re seeing very
stagnant job numbers, confidence in the institution of government is
eroding and now we`re going to have a debate on rape and abortion. The
stupidity is simply staggering."
COX: Let me make two points on this if I get it. One is that I think
women understand that actually, reproductive rights are an economic issue,
among other things. I don`t think you have to separate out. We`re just
going to have a social argument, we`re just going to have an economic issue
The reason why women can participate in society so fully today is because
we have more control over our reproductive rights.
However, I also want to talk about this framing issue and I have seen an
interesting thing happen in the pro-life movement which is when you make
the debate not about having the doctor in the room with you, not about when
does life begin, but about having that woman make her choice based and
making it a human rights issue -- I mean, you get a lot of people, sort of
thinking about it differently.
And, also, I have to say, we have been talking about coalitions during this
whole show. As long as the pro-life coalition is the Republican coalition
that had the other social issues tied to it, I`m not sure how much other
headway they`re going to make.
KORNACKI: Charmaine is going to respond to it after this.
KORNACKI: Charmaine, I really cut you off. Go back and respond to Ana.
YOEST: Well, I have a whole lot of things I want to respond to. But let
me start with this argument that Ana Marie just brought up. And this is
another example of where the abortion lobby and their allies in Washington,
D.C. are completely out of touch with the American people.
The biggest abortion provider in our country gets over $1 million of
taxpayer subsidy a day. This offends people when we are in the middle of a
huge economic crisis in this country when people are out of work and to see
their tax dollars going for abortion.
So, Celinda, you talk about Medicaid funding and all these issues, that`s
where we`re out of touch with the American people. This is a 70 percent,
80 percent issue --
KORNACKI: I`m sorry, you`re talking about defunding Planned Parenthood,
YOEST: The abortion industry.
KORNACKI: When I see the polling numbers, when I see the polling numbers,
just to be clear with the American people on this, defunding Planned
Parenthood overwhelmingly against it, more than two-thirds.
YOEST: When you talk about having your tax dollars go to the abortion
industry, it`s 70 percent, 80 percent of the American people.
LAKE: But tax dollars go for birth control to prevent abortions.
YOEST: Even people who are pro-choice. My neighbors, I live in an area
that`s pro-choice, even these people, they don`t want to see their tax
dollars going for abortion. They want to see parental notification, they
want to see informed consent, they want to see clinic regulation.
There is a whole area of regulation on abortion that there is huge American
consensus on. We have the most radical abortion policies in the world,
right up there with North Korea, China and Canada. We`re the four most
radical countries in the world.
WILLIAMS: And how about England and Scotland?
Agreeing that there are a number of people who may not agree with you on
pushing the restrictive policies on abortion, but even people that would be
welcome and open to the coalition in terms of, there is too many abortions
happening and what we can do. There is still not in the overall
conversation of the pro-life lobby about prevention.
What is it about this aversion to prevention and being able for women to
have access to birth control and be able to make these choices, sex
education, accurate sex education, right? So that you`re not in the
situation where you`re pregnant.
KORNACKI: I`d be curious. We could tie it to the news this week. I was
curious, what do you make of that? We have Obama administration this week
saying it was no longer going to fight the court ruling of Plan B,
emergency birth control. What do you make of that?
YOEST: What I make of that is this goes to this question we were talking
about earlier about informed consent, is it is very, very clear that that
is a very potent drug and it has life-ending properties. And yet that
information is not getting out there to young people.
Let me just, if I could segue a minute because I don`t want us to run out
of time without picking up on a point that Ana Marie made, which is where
young people are today and this question of human rights. Where we are
really, what I think you should be concerned about in terms of what the
trends are looking like is the truth is that young people today are more
pro-life than their parents were.
So, the trends are moving in the direction of the pro-life movement and you
have to ask why. The reason is, this is the post-sonogram generation.
They believe firmly that this is becoming the human rights cause of our
day. It`s human rights for human beings.
And so, we have to be able to have a conversation that moves into looking
at and grappling with these real issues of what young people are concerned
KORNACKI: We have 30 seconds, but, Celinda, you work with the numbers.
I`m just curious --
LAKE: Gen-Xers were becoming more pro-life, but Gen-Yer, the younger
people, actually becoming more pro-choice again. And today, 50 percent of
the birth of people under 30 are unmarried women, very, very pro-choice.
So, it`s not true that young people are becoming --
KORNACKI: That`s a really interesting thing we talk about public opinion.
We look at male versus female, you actually do not see a huge split in
terms of the opinion of abortion. Married versus unmarried women, that`s
where the politics are.
Anyway, I would love to keep going. I can`t.
Anthony Weiner said he`s sorry about something we told you about. That`s
not exactly clear he means. That`s it.
KORNACKI: I want to apologize up front. We have been on the air for two
months and this will be the third time I`ve used part of this show to talk
about Anthony Weiner and something he did in 1991. I know it`s a big
country. There`s a lot going. He`s just one candidate and one primary for
one city`s mayor`s office.
But we`re also as a national figure and the story from 1991 that I keep
harping on is the story that involves an unusually ugly, divisive and
devious calculation that he made. An ugly, divisive and devious
calculation that I don`t think he`s ever really reckoned with it. I say
this because of what happened when Weiner was publicly confronted about
that 1991 incident.
First, a quick refresher. The `91 story is about Weiner`s first campaign
for office. The city council and Democratic primary here in New York. He
was an underdog in a deadly race riot had just broken out in the Crown
Heights section of Brooklyn. It`s a few miles from a heavily white
district who Weiner was running.
Weiner sent out a flyer anonymously that linked his opponent, a woman named
Adele Cohen, to David Dinkins and Jesse Jackson and their, quote, "agenda".
I told the story a month ago and Weiner has been asked about it a few
times. He usually says he regrets it and says he apologizes.
But he often doesn`t stop there and he ends up sounding like he`s not
really apologizing for anything at all. That`s what happened this week,
was after a candidates forum where the `91 flyer have come up and two
reporters, Azi Paybarah of "Capital New York" and Jennifer Fermino of "The
New York Daily News" asked him about it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REPORTER: That `91 flyer, it was brought up by MSNBC, brought up tonight,
it was brought up as recently as 2009. I`m wondering if you think there`s
anything you need to say to voters or to Adele Cohen or anyone else to sort
of address that.
FORMER REP. ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK: I apologized at the time. I
mean -- it was a flyer that pointed out some things that were true, but I
said at the time I think immediately like that week, I sent out a note to
Adele and I`ve seen her several times since then.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: OK. Let`s stop for a second. First he said he apologized to
his opponent at the time.
But there`s a catch. A few weeks ago, we showed you the handwritten
apology note that Weiner had sent to Cohen, one that was written after the
votes were cast. In it, he promised to reach out and apologize in person.
But when we contacted Adele Cohen, she said the meeting never took place.
There`s something more important in what Weiner said there. The line he
put in there that the flyer had pointed out things that were true. One of
the reporters who was there caught it and followed up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REPORTER: What was it that was true?
WEINER: It was a reporting for the "New York Times." you`ve seen it. The
flyer is available.
REPORTER: No, no, no. What were you saying was true in it, like you still
support from the flyer? You said, I pointed out some things that were
REPORTER: Yes, it pointed out something that`s true. That she hadn`t
supported this coalition. I just quoted the flyer on the "New York Times."
I think it was on his web site.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: So, Weiner is saying that the flyer was true, all he had done
was print what the "New York Times" reported. That`s grossly misleading.
The flyer went out of its way to connect Cohen to two black political
leaders that she had never even met Jackson. The coalition Weiner is
referring to is a mishmash of liberal groups in New York. He could have
connected any number of political figures to it, but he chose to single out
two play juror blacking political figures in the wake of a race riot.
Here`s how the exchange with reporters ended this week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REPORTER: Would you send it again, that kind of flyer?
WEINER: No. I apologize for it and I regret sending it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: If all he was doing was pointing out things that were true from
a "New York Times" story, what does Weiner have to be story about? Y
Yes, the flyer is two decades old. When he`s asked about it, he says he
regrets it and apologized for it. But then he keeps talking about it and
it starts to feel like the only thing he`s really regret is that he found
Weiner is hardly the only politician to make a course, calculated appeal to
the public`s worse nightmare. I don`t think there`s a statute of
limitations on holding a public figure accountable, especially if that
politician gives the distinct impression that his apology is obligatory and
he doesn`t mean it, which is the exact impression Anthony Weiner reinforced
I want to find out what my guests know now they didn`t know when the week
Start with you, Ana.
COX: Hillary Clinton is on Twitter. I think that is my big news for the
week. I think her sense of humor is often underrated. So I think everyone
should follow Hillary on Twitter and also my dad on Twitter, who is Sam Cox
one word, his sense of humor is also very underrated.
KORNACKI: Going from Anthony Weiner to Twitter is a perfect segue.
WILLIAMS: I`m going to segue from her father to Father`s Day. You know,
often in the media we get so bombarded but so many negative messages
particularly about men of color being the proponents of violence in our
neighborhood. But this weekend I hope and at least I`m doing and
celebrating those men of color who are not only standing up in their
community against violence, there was just a press conference here in New
York where men came together for Father`s Day in saying it`s enough in
terms of violence in their neighborhood.
But to shout out all of those men of color who are doing what they`re
supposed to do in their communities and going above and beyond, and I just
wanted to say we love you because we often don`t get that from the media.
KORNACKI: All right. And, Charmaine?
YOEST: Can we have a theme here of Father`s Day? I just want to make the
point that Father`s Day is one of the biggest pro-life celebrations out
there because it comes down to, as you talk about prevention, one of the
most important things for the pro-life movement moving forward is this
partnership between men and women of raising children to be healthy and
happy. So, a shout-out to my great dad.
I got the call to come on here and walked out the door on a train an hour
later because of the dad of my kids, my husband.
HAYES: We appreciate that you were able to jump on that train.
LAKE: I`m going to take a little different tack, but I agree with
celebrating Father`s Day. And that is we saw the Independent Women`s Forum
attack Obamacare this week and say that Obamacare is going to lead to 88
percent increase in premiums in Ohio.
Obamacare is going to be the number one negative issue in the 2014
elections. I think the Republicans and the conservatives have their
women`s strategy. I think it`s a real challenge to our side. We need our
women`s strategy, 80 percent of the decision makers on health care are
women. It`s though moms telling their sons and husbands, get on health
care that will make the difference in Obamacare.
HAYES: All right. Well, I got to get out of here so I can go buy a
Father`s Day gift.
Thanks to Ana Marie Cox of "The Guardian", L. Joy Williams of the LJW
Community Strategies, Charmaine Yoest of Americans United for Life, and
Celinda Lake of Lake Research Partners. Thanks for getting UP.
And thank you for joining us on UP.
Join us tomorrow, Sunday morning at 8:00, when I`ll have journalist and
author Rick Perlstein.
And coming up next is "MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY" with "CYCLE" co-host and my
pal Ari Melber setting in. In today`s "MHP", what could be a legacy-
insuring win for President Obama. That and the very scary move Republicans
are making on a national and state level, making clear to women everywhere
that they are a party to be feared. That`s "MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY," her
show is coming up next.
We`ll see you right here tomorrow at 8:00. Thanks for getting UP.
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