The Ed Show for Monday, December 16, 2013
Read the transcript to the Monday show
Show: THE ED SHOW
Date: December 16, 2013
Guest: Chris Van Hollen, Zerlina Maxwell, Josh Marshall, Dan Kildee, Nina
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The infamous Dan Hage (ph).
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in.
REP. PAUL RYAN, (R) WISCONSIN: I see the Tea Party is indispensable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC HOST: Good to have you with us tonight folks. Thanks
I want you to look right at my eyes. When I say something, I mean it.
When I say I stand with workers all across this country, I mean it. When I
say I stand with the 99 percent, I mean it. When I say I stand to help
those who are having a hard time in this economy, I mean it. I just want
you to know that.
This isn`t a game, Mr. Ryan. This isn`t a game, Mr. Boehner. Three days
after Christmas is going to get real tough for 1.3 million people. Real
tough. The insecurity of not knowing what`s going to happen, the
landlord`s going to kick him out, the car`s going to get repossessed,
they`re going to be able to feed their family. Yet, despite all the
foreign aid we give all over the world, despite all the things we do when
it comes to corporate tax loopholes, despite all the places we could go to
find this revenue to help these people in the holiday season, we just can`t
get it done. Amazing.
The attitude that this guy has is I`ve got mine. Congressman Paul Ryan`s
bipartisan budget is headed for a Senate vote later this week. We think
this is Washington we`re talking about. Don`t be fooled. It`s a bad
budget for the unemployed and it still leaves room for Republicans to hold
America hostage when it comes to having the debt ceiling. Oh, it`s coming.
As of tonight, as I`ve mentioned, 1.3 million Americans are scheduled.
They`re on a schedule. This is going to happen. They`re going to lose
their unemployment benefits on December 28th. Republicans in both houses
of Congress are complaining about, oh, here we go, offsets.
How in the world are we going to pay for this? How are we going to pay for
the 1.3 million people that are going to cost us $25 billion? We never
heard anything about offsets when they shut the government down and it cost
$25 billion, but we`re back to offsets.
Here`s what House Speaker John Boehner said recently.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), HOUSE SPEAKER: When the White House finally
called me last Friday, about extending unemployment benefits I said that,
"We were clearly -- I consider it as long as it`s paid for and as long as
there are other efforts that`ll help get our economy moving once again."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Other efforts? Is he willing to help now? First, if Boehner
really cared about the economy, he would pass, I guess, a miraculous jobs
bill. Second, when unemployment is above 7 percent, Congress historically
does not require offsets. We`ve never had that as a problem before but
we`ve never had this crowd either. And third, Boehner needs to look at one
of my favorite charts. We are spending $520 billion on defense next year
in 2014. That`s a big piece of the pie. That`s a big piece of your tax
dollars. It`s over half the budget.
Setting aside $25 billion for food stamps, I don`t know. Ever done a
budget? I mean, that`d be a sliver, wouldn`t it? It should be a big deal.
Aside from Boehner, Republicans have remained mostly silent on unemployment
benefits but Democrats, they`re furious. They had no problem calling out
Republicans on their heartless cuts.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JOSEPH CROWLEY (D), NEW YORK: Unfortunately, it looks that we will
leave here this week without addressing unemployment insurance. It`s
unconscionable and it`s immoral.
REP. SHEILA JACKSON LEE (D), TEXAS: Chairman Ryan, I`d like to post a
question if I could to you if you would. Would you not join us in putting
on the floor an amendment that will provide for the extension of
unemployment that will not run out December 28th for the hardworking
Americans, 68,000 in Texas, 1.3 million? Would you not do that?
RYAN: I`ll defer to the Speaker`s comments.
LEE: Well, we got no answer.
REP. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN (D), MARYLAND: There is also a sour note in leaving
here without having addressed the unemployment insurance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Absolutely Congressman Chris Van Hollen. Well, he`s got a good
plan. He wants to take it one step further. He wants to hit the
Republicans where it`s going to hurt them by threatening their farm bill
subsidies. Now, we`re getting to the heartland where everybody is going to
be paying attention.
What do you mean no farm bill subsidy? What do you mean no crop insurance?
What do you mean no counter-cyclical payments? What do you mean no safety
net? What do you mean no disaster relief?
Van Hollen said, "Under no circumstances, should we support the farm bill
unless Republicans agree to use the savings from it to extend unemployment
Now, we`re getting down to the nitty-gritty. This is how you got to play
ball with the Republicans. Here`s the lay of a land.
A lot of the Senators are unsure about this budget bill. The latest whip
count shows as of late this afternoon, only 35 Yes votes are available in
the Senate for this budget bill. Most of the Yes votes are Democrats but
60 votes are needed to clear procedural hurdles in the Senate. The Senate
is the only thing standing in the way of this budget and a vote is expected
later this week.
Meanwhile, there`s this Ryan guy, Mr. Ryan. Paul Ryan is already
calculating what the next hostage will be for the debt limit crisis. His
budget does avoid a shutdown over the next two years. That`s election
protection, as what I call it. But there is still some room to play games
with our nation`s credit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN: We, the caucus, along with our Senate counterparts are going to meet
and discuss what it is we want to get out of the debt limit. We don`t want
nothing out of this debt limit. We`re going to decide what it is we can
accomplish out of this debt limit. One of the problems or concerns I have
with the debt limit is we don`t know when it`s going to hit.
Jack Lew, the Treasury Secretary, has ultimate discretion on when this
could occur. So the timing of this is very much in doubt. So we`re going
to meet in our retreats after the holidays and discuss exactly what it is
we`re going to try and get for this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Yeah, exactly what we`re going to try to get for this. This is
not about doing a deal. This is about what they can get ideologically to
Do you really believe that Paul Ryan is an honest broker when it comes to
unemployed Americans? He said Republicans still want something out of this
debt limit. Ryan also said Republicans will be discussing it in the
backroom. Everything`s in the backroom, isn`t it? Instead of out in front
of the American people who actually pay this jokers.
Sounds like a recipe for another Republican cost credit downgrade to me.
"Do you trust Ryan?" is exactly what I said on this program last week. Do
you trust Boehner? That if we let this unemployment thing go and they can
stop it in the Senate and if they go along with this budget, do you really
trust John Boehner who voted, what, over 40 some odd times to get rid of
health care? Do you think he`s really going to come back and care about
the unemployed? Do you think he`s going to care in six months? Do you
think he`s going to realize and he has done nothing for jobs bill to help
the economy? Hell, no. Didn`t he say, "Hell, no, you can`t"? Yes, he
said something like that. I remember that tape.
Here`s the fallacy in all of this. Liberals, now they`re trying to pass
Paul Ryan off as some kind of a moderate because he did a budget deal.
They`re already talking about going after the big three. You can`t
negotiate with these folks. This is about power and it is about political
strength. That is the only thing the Republicans know.
Maybe, this will be a wake up call to the Democrats. Suck it up. Go to
bat for those who deserve it. A lot of these people who are unemployed and
have been unemployed for a long time have paid taxes for a long time. They
deserve a break again and again.
Get your cellphones out. I want to know what you think. Tonight`s
question, "Do you trust Republicans to help the unemployed in the New
Year?" Text A for Yes, text B for No to 67622. You can always go to our
blog at ed.msnbc.com. We`ll bring you the results later on in the show.
For more, let me bring in Congressman Chris Van Hollen of Maryland.
Congressman, great to have you with us tonight.
VAN HOLLEN: Good to be with you Ed.
SCHULTZ: I like the idea. You said that you`re willing to hold up the
farm bill to get unemployment extension. Give us a little bit more detail
VAN HOLLEN: Well, look, Ed, just before we left, Congressman Sandy Levin
and I went to the House Rules Committee to ask for a vote on a very simple
proposal. We want to extend unemployment insurance for at least three
months and we actually had a way to pay for it. And the way we paid for it
was by using some of these excessive crop subsidies which by the way, the
Republicans claim they want to get rid of as well so we said, "Well, let`s
use some of those savings to help these folks who were going to be out in
the cold three days after Christmas." and Republicans were so concerned
that they didn`t even allow a vote on that measure, Ed.
So what I`m saying is that when we come back in January to take up the farm
bill, we need to look at it on its own merits. But if we think that the
farm bill over all is OK, it is expected to say that at least $15 billion
net. We should use that money to provide unemployment compensation and we
should insist that those funds are used for unemployment insurance or not
proceed with the overall bill.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, I would hope that you would get a lot of support in
the Democratic caucus from this -- for this across the board. If you look
at the map, blue, red in rural America, it`s very Republican. If the
Republicans can`t serve up a good farm bill, one that is going to fit a lot
of people in the heartland, it`s going to cause some political problems
This is operating, I believe, from a position of strength. How do you feel
the Senate -- what do you -- how do you think the Senate would feel about
VAN HOLLEN: Well, look. I think people will be looking at the way that
you described. It`s a question of getting the votes together. And the
point I`m making is the proposal is not for or against the farm bill.
People can decide on their own -- its own merits where they support the
VAN HOLLEN: I`m saying it will be generating some savings. We know that
it will have at least $15 billion in savings. So let`s use those funds
which Democrats or Republicans have agreed to for a good cause, to extend
unemployment insurance. And, you know, Ed, we tried during the budget
negotiations to use the savings from the farm bill to help replace a part
of the sequester.
VAN HOLLEN: Our Republicans said they didn`t want to do it then. We
looked at other things for that purpose. But now, we should definitely be
using them because as you said, otherwise, you`re going to have 1.3 million
Americans who`ve worked hard, who are continuing to look everyday for work.
And so, what better use of farm bill savings and the reductions and ex-
subsidies than to help people who are down and out, worked hard, lost a job
through no fault of their own, they`re still looking for work.
SCHULTZ: And now, this would be a compromise. This would be a real
compromise that would help people but let`s look at it before Christmas.
How does Congress get an unemployment extension before Christmas? That
seems like it`s pretty much out of the question.
VAN HOLLEN: Well, as I said, we tried to even get a vote on that .
VAN HOLLEN: . in the House, Ed. And the Speaker said, he wouldn`t allow
the American people even the benefit of a vote. We said, you know, "Mr.
Speaker, House Republicans, if you want to vote no, if you want to vote
against unemployment insurance for the American people. For goodness
sakes, have the decency to do it in a transparent way .
VAN HOLLEN: . do it in a light of day." And they refused to do it. In
the Senate, Harry Reid had tried to bring this up by unanimous consent.
Republicans shut it down.
SCHULTZ: So if we did this with the farm bill at $15 billion, and since
we`re going to be spending $520 billion on defense, is there any way we
could carve 10 billion out of the defense spending to come up with the $25
billion to help these Americans out and then work on a jobs bill to get
these people back into the economy? I mean, it`s like running a business.
If you are solving, you can find the money. You can find the money to do
what you got to do in business if you`re solvent in the way you operate. I
mean, there is money here, why won`t the Republicans give it up?
VAN HOLLEN: Well, there are number of places you can look at. And I would
argue, Ed, that the first place you should look at for is actually the farm
subsidies themselves because my understanding is at this point in time,
that the farm bill only includes about $8 billion, $9 billion, $10 billion
in savings from ending the farm subsidies when the President`s budget, the
Ryan budget, and the House Democratic budget all actually had $30 billion
in them just from .
VAN HOLLEN: . getting rid of these excessive farm subsidies. And so, the
farm bill guys have actually whittled those savings way down. There`s no
reason tax payers should be shelling out billions and billions of dollars
to large agri-businesses. And so that`s another place to look. But look,
the bottom line is that we should not be moving forward on this unless we
can use those savings and other savings we may find .
VAN HOLLEN: . to help those folks who are still struggling. And as you`ve
pointed out many times, it`s not only to help those struggling families,
it`s to help the small businesses, the merchants in the surrounding
neighborhoods because those folks have to pay the rent. They got to put
food on the table.
SCHULTZ: They sure do. And that act (ph) dollar turns 11 times on Main
VAN HOLLEN: That`s exactly right.
SCHULTZ: . in rural America. One more point, Paul Ryan said the
Republicans want concessions out of the debt limit. Are they gearing up
for a default? I mean, what is he talking about?
VAN HOLLEN: I`m glad you raised that because some people are asking
whether this bipartisan moment is something that will be sustainable or
whether it`s a one-off. And we began to get the answer very quickly from
Congressman Ryan over the weekend which is that we`re quickly going to go
back to brinksmanship where Republicans are going to threaten the full
faith and credit of the United States, that they`re going to threaten it we
will not pay our bills on time unless they enact and extracts a partisan
and political concessions. And so, apparently, their view will be once
again that in order for Republicans to do the right thing and make sure .
VAN HOLLEN: . that the country pays its bills, you`ve got to help enact
the Republican Tea Party agenda.
SCHULTZ: It`s .
VAN HOLLEN: I hope that`s not the case but that`s what it was beginning to
sound like just this last weekend.
SCHULTZ: There`s no doubt about it. They`re .
VAN HOLLEN: Yes.
SCHULTZ: . on the hunt for a hostage. They are on the hunt again for a
hostage after all the smiling at the press conference, we got a bipartisan
deal and all that stuff.
No, they`re out on the hunt. They`re going do the same stuff they`ve done
before. You can`t trust them.
Congressman Chris Van Hollen, good to have you with us tonight. I
appreciate your time.
Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the screen.
Share your thoughts with us on Twitter at Ed Show and on Facebook. We want
to know what you think.
Coming up, John McCain backtracks on his comment about Hitler. Plus, the
new threat to American jobs, workers need to tell Congress to take down the
SCHULTZ: Time now for the Trenders. Social media, this is where you can
find the big guy, facebook.com/edshow, twitter.com/edshow, very active of
late, and also ed.msnbc.com. And the radio you can call me, 1-877-WeGotEd,
Monday through Friday noon to 3:00 Sirius XM channel 127 in liberal talk
stations across the country. And also, on our website wegoted.com, you can
find out a lot about our Ed Tour 2014.
The Ed Show social media nation has decided, we are reporting. Here our
today`s top Trenders voted on by you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I made a huge, tiny mistake.
SCHULTZ: The number three Trender, gross out.
SEN. JOH MCCAIN, REP. OF ARIZONA: I mean, what`s the point? Neville
Chamberlain shook hands with Hitler.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you regret that statement.
MCCAIN: I think it was gross exaggeration.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My bad.
MCCAIN: It is what it is.
SCHULTZ: John McCain pleads guilty.
MCCAIN: You want me to plead guilty here on CNN, guilty.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is the guiltiest face I`ve seen all day.
SCHULTZ: The number two Trender, saddle sore.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dallas Cowboys at 26-3 at half end up losing to the
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We blew it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Seriously, you can`t make this stuff up with Romo?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Peanut butter and jelly sandwich? You`ll never get
anywhere treating your helmet like a lunchbox on
SCHULTZ: Tony Romo`s meltdown cost the Cowboys.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Blowing a 23-point lead at home.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Snap out of it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ve seen this movie way too many times.
SCHULTZ: And today`s top Trender, TPP trauma. It will be mapped on
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Members of Congress aren`t supposed to tell anyone
what they`ve read.
SCHULTZ: All negotiations have been held behind closed doors.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is extraordinary secrecy.
SCHULTZ: American jobs have a new threat.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What about the freedom of people to associate or to
join unions? That`s not going to be in this.
SCHULTZ: This is not about union labor. This is about American labor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Joining me tonight, Congressman Dan Kildee of Michigan.
Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
I know that you`re on record against the TPP but this tweet caught my
attention today. CBS network radio reporter, Mark Knoller, tweeted out
from the White House today. That`s his beat. He says that the White House
says the TPP is "critical for creating jobs, promoting growth, providing
opportunity for American workers" and promoting Fair Trade in Asia and
Now, if that is where the White House stands and if that`s where the
President is, don`t you think the country needs a little bit a definition
of where all these jobs are going to come from?
REP. DAN KILDEE (D), MICHIGAN: I think you`re right. I mean, I lived
through this. I come from Flint, Michigan and I remember the North
American Free Trade agreement, the same promises of job growth, economic
growth, and everything was going to work out just fine for Flint and
Saginaw and Bay City. We had 50,000 General Motors jobs back then. Today,
we`ve got 10,000.
Thank God, we do have the auto industry being recovered -- going through
recovery now. But we cannot afford another one of these agreements that
puts American jobs up against countries that have no environmental
standards, no labor standards, no unions. This is not going to work out
for us and it`s just particularly with Japan entering TPP. This is just
not the direction that we should be going in this country.
SCHULTZ: Today, General Motors announced that its plan to pump in $600
million into the Flint, Michigan Assembly plan. I mean, this is good news.
KILDEE: It is good news. I was there when they made the announcement and
the workers earned that big investment.
SCHULTZ: Well, this backing is part of $1.27 billion investment across
five factories across America and of course GM has really taking a huge
step forward here. A lot of people gave up on the industry. How does this
Trans-Pacific Partnership jeopardize the jobs this investment is going to
create? And I think we got to get right to it.
Here`s GM doing their part. Here`s the expansion in these communities and
yet we`re on the verge of having another trade agreement that could re-gut
the industry that we saw have troubles on NAFTA.
KILDEE: Well, TPP would be bad for the auto industry. We need to have a
consistent industrial policy if we`re going to support the American auto
industry. As it looks like we have recently. I give the President all the
credit for stepping up. We`ve got to be consistent.
We can`t have Japan, for example, one of the largest markets for autos,
five million a year, only five percent of their sales are imports. Typical
industrialized nations, that`s going to be 30 or 40 percent. So we can`t
be in a position where our workers have to compete against countries that
don`t have good labor standards or in the case of Japan, manipulate their
currency or use non-trade barriers to keep our vehicles out.
Meanwhile, they want to bring more vehicles in. It`s just not going to
work out. I`m all for free and fair trade. But so far, Ed, none of these
agreements have ever actually passed the test. They may work in theory .
KILDEE: . but in practice, we lose jobs.
SCHULTZ: Well, the President has executive authority over the trade
negotiators. These negotiations have been held in great secrecy. There`s
only a few people that know the details of this. Why? Why is it coming
down like this?
KILDEE: Well, I mean, this is the way these agreements have come so that
when they come to us, it`s a yes or no question. And look, I`m a policy
maker. We should have our hands in -- with the policies that the United
States puts forth and that include industrial policy.
KILDEE: So I just don`t think there`s any way that I can look the other
way on this and even I`m a supporter and a fan of the President, we
disagree on a few things. This is one of them. I think this is the wrong
direction for our country.
SCHULTZ: I`m just anxious to hear the explanation from somebody on the
economic team that can explain this. Tell us where the upside is.
KILDEE: I tell you, here`s the thing. The folks need to talk to the
people and Flint in Bay City in Saginaw. We`ve been through this before
and we`ve heard the arguments.
And, you know, in sort of in theory, the arguments makes sense. But in
practice, it never seems to work out. It never seems to translate the jobs
for the people that I represent, because .
KILDEE: . we`re going in trying to get into markets where those markets
just don`t want to import. They don`t want to see American imports come in
and they do everything they can to keep it from happening. These free
trade agreements just don`t work for us.
SCHULTZ: Congressman Den Kildee, good to have you with us tonight.
Congratulations to Flint, Michigan. It`s great news, no doubt about it.
KILDEE: Our workers earned it. Thank you.
SCHULTZ: You bet.
Coming up, Megyn Kelly`s White Christmas, the Fox News Anchor tries to
defend herself. Still ahead, Newt Gingrich says he knows who`s to blame
for poverty problems of the United States. Well, he lands in tonight`s
But next, I`m taking your questions next Ask Ed Live, coming up on MSNBC.
We`ll be right back.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. Love this segment, love hearing
from our viewers. Our first question tonight in Ask Ed Live comes from Dan
Oliver, is that Dan Oliver from Northern Virginia? I thought he was
Righty. What are you doing watching Big Eddy? Good to see you, Dan. I
hope that`s you.
"When are Americans going to realize the Republicans, the one who cut
social programs, to give more handouts to the rich in businesses?
Well, the guy I know wouldn`t ask that question. All right. Here is the
bottom line, the next election and if we don`t do something to get the
House back on a very high level this is what you`re going to run into.
Next question comes from Edward. "Do Republicans really think that if
people don`t work they shouldn`t eat?"
Well, I think that`s a real legitimate question because I think the
Republicans should answer the question, "What do you want this people to do
on December 28th and in the coming weeks?" Because there is certainly
isn`t any indication that there`s going to be a deal. So, what do you want
them to do Mr. Ryan, Mr. Boehner, Cantor? What do you want these people to
Fair question? Stick around. Rapid Response Panel, coming up.
MORGAN BRENNAN, CNBC MARKET WRAP CORRESPONDENT: I`m Morgan Brennan with
your CNBC Market Wrap. The Dow jumps 129 points today. The S and P added
11. And the NASDAQ gained 28.
Industrial production rose 1.1 percent in November driven by a surge in
auto production. It`s the single largest month increase in a year. GM
says it will invest nearly $1.3 billion at five U.S. plants to produce
higher quality trucks, engines, and transmissions.
Meanwhile, shares of Exxon Mobil jumped 2 percent after Goldman Sachs
upgraded the oil giant from neutral to a buy. That`s it from CNBC, first
in business world wide.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MEGYN KELLY, FOX NEWS HOST: When I saw this headline, I kind of laugh
myself. This is so ridiculous yet another person claiming it`s racist to
have a white Santa, you know. And by the way, for all you kids watching at
home, Santa just is white. Just because it makes you feel uncomfortable
doesn`t mean it has to change, you know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
KELLY: I mean, Jesus, he was a white man too. But, you know, it`s like --
we have -- he was a historical figure. I mean, that`s verifiable fact as
is Santa. I just want the kids.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.
KELLY: . watching to know that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Could have been spoken better by four white people sitting there.
Welcome back to the Ed Show. Fox News host Megyn Kelly made some news on
her own last week when she insisted Santa Claus and Jesus were white. On
Friday, Kelly responded to the uproar. Here it is in part.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KELLY: Humor is a part of what we try to bring to this show but sometimes
that is lost on the humor list. Well, this would be funny if it we`re not
so telling about our society, in particular, the knee-jerk instinct by so
many to race-bait and to assume the worst of people, especially people
employed by the very powerful Fox News channel. By the way, I also did say
Jesus was white as I`ve learned in the past two days that is far from
settled. Race is still and incredibly volatile issue in this country and
Fox News and yours truly are big targets for many people.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Well, let`s break this down. According to Kelly, it was -- it`s
all a joke. If you were offended is because you are a humorless race-
baiter, powerful Fox News is the real victim in all this. Kelly also
speaks as if she just discovered race is still a volatile issue in this
country and a very heated discussion at times. She must not watch her own
network. Let`s be clear. Challenging racism, racial stereotypes, or so-
called racial norms is not race-baiting. It is important even in the world
of fictional characters to challenge ourselves in the conversation on race.
This is supposed to be a season of good feelings and good will, and how can
our heart be in the right place and in the spirit of the season if we`re
making all this about one skin color or another? On Friday, Kelly offered
no real apology for her comments in typical Fox News fashion. The knee-
jerk response is to point fingers by blaming political correctness in
playing the victim.
Joining me now in our Rapid Response panel, the Grio contributor Zerlina
Maxwell, and also Josh Marshal, Founder and Editor of Talking Points Memo.
Great to have both of you with us. Well, I guess there has to be a
judgment here made by all of us individually or anybody watching as to
whether it was a joke or not?
ZERLINA MAXWELL, THE GRIO CONTRIBUTOR: Right.
MAXWELL: Well, I mean watching it, definitely wasn`t a scripted moment, it
was an offhand comment. I don`t know that I think that it was joke, but I
think that, you know, the larger conversation is really what`s important.
It is important that we talk about sort of our cultural and traditional
symbols and why we must -- why she was insisting that they be white, and
why changing that made, you know, her and many folks uncomfortable. The
root of that is actually very problematic. I think that children should be
able to imagine Santa Clause whatever color they want him to be.
SCHULTZ: Well it was -- of a story that a black woman wrote .
MAXWELL: Yes, yes.
SCHULTZ: . explaining her feelings growing up.
SCHULTZ: I would have to say that her feelings were discarded by the
anchor. That`s how I took it.
MAXWELL: And, you know, I agree with those -- that sentiment because I
grew up in an all white town and had a Black Santa because my mom
prioritized having those cultural and traditional symbols be something that
looks like me. I think that that was really important for my parents and
my self-esteem growing up and I think that, you know, maybe the majority
race doesn`t necessarily understand that everything we see, if you go into
our barns and all the book, look at magazines, it`s all white faces. And
how that feels when you`re growing up and you don`t see things that reflect
what you look like.
SCHULTZ: Josh, your insights on this story, your thoughts.
JOSH MARSHALL, TALKING POINTS MEMO: You know, I don`t think it was a joke,
I think it was in a way sort of an offhanded comment. But I think what was
revealing about it is, you know, when you and I were growing up, there were
-- it was a lot wider country, it just was. And I think a lot of people -
I don`t know Megyn Kelly but certainly a lot of Americans, that`s a little
uncomfortable. Look around. You don`t see quite, you know, in percentage
terms, white has many white faces. And so, I just see this as sort of an
offhanded sort of outgrowth of that. Well, you say like, you know, I don`t
see as many white people but Santa is why I`m holding on to Santa. You`re
not going to make Santa not be white for me. So, you know, I mean we have
to remember here, Santa is not real.
MARSHALL: So this goes with the conversation research level. But again,
to me is that it`s not -- it`s not a -- it`s not, you know, racist is too
strong, it`s just -- it`s people`s -- there is a big slice of white America
that is not comfortable that America doesn`t look exactly what it did 30
SCHULTZ: And today, Libertarian Radio Host Neal Boortz came to Kelly`s
defense saying, "Santa is white. Deal with it." He added, "I`m going to
scream and complain because Martin Luther King is always portrayed as
black." What`s your reaction to that Zerlina?
MAXWELL: Well .
SCHULTZ: I mean, Santa is whatever you want Santa to be.
MAXWELL: That is ridiculous. Santa Clause is not real, OK? If you lived
-- if you didn`t live in a house that has chimney, I mean, how is Santa
going to get to you? My mom explained to me very early on that Santa is
not real. I`m the one paying for the presents. It`s me, thank me. So, I
just think that if it`s a fictional character, you should be able to
imagine him however you want, that`s part of, you know, growing up and
being creative as a child.
SCHULTZ: Now earlier last week Josh, Kelly tells Jay Leno that she`s a
straight news anchor. On Friday, she says that she`s just joking and not
to take her seriously. Where are we with this anchor?
MARSHALL: I`m fine to think of her as joking and not take her seriously.
That`s sort of where I started of at the beginning. Look, she works on Fox
News. Of course, she`s not a straight journalist. There`s no one who does
talk on Fox News whose straight journalist. Frankly, even these supposed
straight journalists aren`t straight journalist. So, you know, maybe
privately she has different views, but certainly not what .
SCHULTZ: Isn`t this all a part of the overriding theme that there`s a war
on Christmas. And this is just another one of those stories that fits
right into there?
MARSHALL: It`s part -- I mean, in this sense, you know, not everybody is
Christian in America anymore -- not that there was ever, you know, 100
percent the case, but again, there`s -- a lot of things are changing in
America. And they really are changing. It`s not just a fantasy that
someone`s, you know, or fear someone has. And I think a lot of our
politics today is motivated by this sense of, you know, where are the
breaks in the clock that is .
MARSHALL: . America. And this is -- you see that kind of tension coming
out and this sort of offhanded comments.
SCHULTZ: I think that the Conservative Movement is very concerned about
change and diversity. And I think to make the blatant statement that Jesus
is white just underscores how defensive they can be.
MAXWELL: Yes. I mean that -- as a daughter of two pastors and when she --
well, that was really what stood out to me as incorrect. It wasn`t the
Santa because Santa is not real but Jesus is real and he was not white. I
mean, that -- I mean I don`t -- there`s a debate over what he was and maybe
how dark he was, but I mean, just historically, first century Jews were not
So I just think that, you know, I -- most of the time, when you`re talking
about these things, people are uncomfortable when -- like Josh said, when -
- you know, the browning of American, the emerging majorities. And, you
know, I think that they might have to reflect a little bit on why they are
uncomfortable because the root of that, like I said, is a problem. And you
just need to really think deeply as to why does it make you uncomfortable
that Santa may not be white to every child?
SCHULTZ: What about that?
MARSHALL: I think that really hits it on the head. They`re -- This is a
humorous and offhanded example of something that once pretty deep to our
politics. And again, you see it, I mean, this is why immigration reform is
SCHULTZ: So .
MARSHALL: This is why you got a lot of paranoia about.
MARSHALL: . having a black president.
SCHULTZ: So .
MAXWELL: Right, exactly.
SCHULTZ: . Megyn Kelly says when she first read the story, she thought
that she laughed it up. She thought it was so ridiculous but it made her
program. And she says she`s a straight news anchor. I found that very
interesting. How is Fox the victim? How are they the victim that part of
her apology the other night was, you know, that people are just out to get
Fox. They are the victim.
MARSHALL: You know, a Fox is the, you know, vocal chords of the
Conservative Movement in America. And this is something that goes to the
heart of conservatism is victimology. You see that this is the war on
Christmas that, you know, all these kinds of things. There is something
very deep-seated in American conservatism particularly now when
conservatives feel besieged in America that of course they are the victim.
It`s victimology. It`s ironic because the Right often talks about the left
whether it`s on race or women or whatever, victimhood, victim this, victim
that. But the Right in America is deeply wedded to their own victimhood.
So again, the fact that Fox goes there, again, Fox is the vocal chords of
American conservatism. So why would it be any different?
SCHULTZ: Josh Marshall, Zerlina Maxwell, thanks for joining us tonight.
Appreciate it so much.
MARSHALL: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, Republicans are trying to turn the clock back on
voting in Ohio. And Pretenders coming up. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And in Pretenders tonight, the occasional candidate, Newt
Gingrich on Sunday. The former House Speaker and presidential, hopeful,
went head to head with Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich on the rise
of income inequality of the United States.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERT REICH, FORMER SECRETARY OF LABOR: I think it has something to do
perhaps with the intransigence of the Speaker`s party, because every time
there was a jobs bill, every time there was an effort to expand a low
income housing, every time there was an effort to provide better
opportunities for young people. We`re talking about equal opportunity.
Equal opportunity and that`s the basis of this.
NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: This is baloney.
REICH: What is baloney?
GINGRICH: Here`s the baloney, every major city which is a center of
poverty is run by Democrats, every major city.
GINGRICH: Their policies have failed, they`re not willing to admit it, and
the fact is that the poor will suffer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: OK, Newt. Let`s take Detroit for example. You fail to mention
$300 million of state funds were withheld from the city. Thanks to
Republican control on the state level. Trickle down economics Newt,
doesn`t work, just ask the Pope. If Newt Gingrich thinks Democrats were to
blame for income inequality of the Unites States, he can keep on
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. This is the story for the folks who
take a shower after work. An assault on voting rights, is an assault on
our Democracy? No doubt, which means we all need to pay attention to
what`s happening all over the country, but especially in the State of Ohio.
Ohio went for President Obama in the last two presidential elections.
Voters had to endure some of the longest lines in the country to cast their
ballots after the Supreme Court struck down key provisions to the Voting
Rights Act, Republicans started doing everything in their power to turn the
state red. Several bills are now pending in the Ohio General Assembly
which will greatly reduce access to the polls. And then there`s Senate
Bill 238 which would cut the voting period known as Golden Week which
allows voters to simultaneously register and cast an early in person
ballot. Senate Bill 205 would put more restraints on absentee voting.
Last week, the Ohio House of Representatives cleared the Republican back
measure that will only make it easier for Ohio Secretary of State of
suppression John Husted to purge a large number of voters. The bill also
reduces the minimum number of election machines counties are required to
have. Fewer machines, good idea.
It`s headed to the desk and here`s the key to the whole story. It`s headed
to the desk of the Republican Governor John Kasich and he is expected to
sign it. Make no mistake, the Republican assault on voting rights is in
full force in Ohio, and that`s why I think my next guest who is running for
Secretary of State in Ohio is one of the most important guests we could
have when it comes to voting rights. You want to win the presidential you
better win Ohio. You better have the integrity of the vote.
Nina Turner, State Senator of Ohio, joining us tonight. Senator, great to
have you with us. Is it John Kasich -- this is a guy that`s running around
trying to present himself as a reasonable Republican, what`s reasonable
about these laws if he`s going to sign them?
STATE SEN. NINA TURNER, (D) OHIO: Nothing Ed and I implore the governor to
veto that bill. I`m not sure if it`s on his desk right now as you
indicated it didn`t just clear the House of Representative last week, but
the governor has the power to pen it, he should veto this bill. If we`re
going back to the days of 2004, Ed where countless numbers of voters in the
State of Ohio were disenfranchised, do cut the number of voting machines
without even -- to have in a study to determine how many machines are
necessary is just wrong.
I think about Knox County, Kenyon College. In 2004, 1300 voters voted at a
precinct that only had two voting machines. One broke down and that left
people in line, Ed all the way into the next morning at 4 a.m. The last
voter voted .
TURNER: . in Knox County at Kenyon College at 4:00 in the morning in 2004.
And we cannot go back to that.
SCHULTZ: So Senator what are the Republicans say when you say why fewer
machines in some counties especially in minority areas?
TURNER: Well, they claim that it gives the flexibilities to the Local
Boards of Elections, but what is really going on here is tactics to
disenfranchise voters. Let`s face it. The Republicans have cut local
budgets and Democrats are very sensitive to that, but when it comes to
voting, we should definitely make sure that we are studying and to have
proper machines in voting locations. This is nothing but absolute power
disrupting absolutely. And the Republicans are setting now in this state
and all across the country to disrupt access to the ballot box.
SCHULTZ: So you think that Kasich`s response is going to be something
about local elections and local officials making their best tactics. You
just hear them now, that local officials are best equipped to make a
decision to how many machines that they`re going to need on the day of the
election. I mean, you said something interesting, there`s been no survey,
no study, no investment to find out, I mean, social engineering is
something that is done. I mean .
TUNER: And Ed .
SCHULTZ: . you need more machines, you need more machines.
TURNER: And Democrats did push for that amendment recognizing that local
governments do need more money because of Republicans the funding to local
government have been cut. There`s no doubt about it. But we should not
disenfranchise people in the process. And so, they -- Republicans rejected
a very reasonable public policy recommendation by Democrats to study it.
And our democracy is the greatest equalizer, Ed. We cannot sit back, idly
by and allow this to happen. We should be expanding and protecting the
vote, but that is not happening in Ohio, that is not happening in certain
states across this country, and I am asking Governor John Kasich tonight to
veto that bill.
SCHULTZ: And there`s no local heat on him from anybody. I mean, he`s just
sitting there and this is a story that`s laying out there.
TURNER: There are activist all around Ed. You`re doing it. I got to
admit that MSNBC is really keeping a lot of light on this. You have been
strong on this. Local unions are involved in this. They are in the fight
to make sure that people have access to the ballot box. But we have to --
well, I mean, the power is in the governor`s hands. This is wrong. It`s
unconscionable, absolutely unconscionable to regress our slate.
SCHULTZ: What about the Golden Week, I mean, that has been something of
real pride in Ohio hasn`t it?
TURNER: It has and folks use it. People in rural, urban, and suburban
areas, all across the great State of Ohio, they really enjoy early voting.
And so, I cannot for the life of me understand why the Republicans want to
cut this access -- this avenue to voting. It makes no sense to me. And
they have yet to answer this question. But it`s been since 2008, since the
election of President Obama that have -- we have seen folks lose their
absolute mind over access to the ballot box and it makes no sense. We got
to continue to protect the democracy in this one woman, one man, one vote,
it is what gives us our equal voice in this great nation.
SCHULTZ: I think it is one of the most important elections in the country.
Secretary of State in Ohio, Nina Turner, great to have you with us tonight.
TURNER: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Keep up the fight. Thank you so much. And we`ll see what John
Kasich is going to do, see if he makes any comments about this bills before
it`s time to sign them. We believe he`s going to sign them.
That`s the Ed Show. I`m Ed Schultz. Politics Nation with Reverend Al
Sharpton starts right now. Good evening Rev.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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