The Ed Show for Thursday, September 18th, 2014
Read the transcript to the Thursday show
THE ED SHOW
September 18, 2014
Guest: Chuck Todd, Joe Sestak, Jon Erpenbach, Leo Gerard, Larry Cohen,
ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC HOST: Good evening Americans and welcome to the Ed Show
live from New York. Let`s get to work.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We welcome, we would like Congress,
please, do this.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Whether in Iraq or in Syria,
these terrorists will learn the same thing that leaders of Al-Qaeda already
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: John Kerry, hounded by anti-war protesters in
Congress, echoed the President.
OBAMA: We mean what we say.
KERRY: We`re not going to make our actions dependent on any happening
SEN. BOB CORKER, (R) TENNESSEE: I`m not going to ask for buy-in by the
United States Senator House Representatives on behalf of the American
SEN. BARBARA BOXER, (D) CALIFORNIA: This is not the time to show anger at
the people who were working night and day when you agree with them and to
protect our people.
CORKER: Is that criticizing the worst judgment possible...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... out quickly to pass a bill to train and equip the
Syrian rebels in Saudi Arabia.
CORKER: We will work with you as closely as we can and should.
BOXER: You cannot sit on the sideline. At least, I can`t.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight folks. Thanks for watching. We
start with some breaking news. It`s 5:00 here on the East Coast and polls
have closed in Scotland. Right now, the race for the Scottish independence
is just too close to call.
And another breaking story at this hour here on U.S. soil, members of the
House of Representatives are doing what they do best. They`re quitting and
Republican Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced late this afternoon at
the House of Representatives will not be back in Washington until December
-- or excuse me -- until November 12. Before the House members skip town,
they put on a second act of political theater.
Members of Congress grilled Secretary of State John Kerry about the Obama
administration`s strategy to fight ISIS again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED POE, (R) TEXAS: Tell me and the American people exactly who we
are at more with. What would you call -- I call them ISIS, Islamic State
of Iraq and Syria? What would you tell the American people?
OK, we are doing this support. We are at war. We are a counter-terrorism
operation. Whatever you want to call it. Who is the enemy? Define the
enemy for me. Are they the enemy of the United States?
KERRY: They are an enemy of humanity.
POE: So they are enemy of the U.S. too.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Oh, Secretary Kerry and President Obama have stated they have
absolutely no intention of sending U.S. troops in the combat.
Late Wednesday afternoon, members of the House voted in favor of arming
moderate Syrian rebels in the fight against the Islamic State. The measure
passed by a vote 273 to 156. It`s important to note there was a size of
all opposition from both parties. 71 House Democrats voted against
President Obama`s plan.
Right now, the Senate is debating the same bill. The debate has been just
as heated as it was over in the House yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL, (R) KENTUCKY: It`s messy. It`s unclear. There are bad
people on both sides. We need to stay the heck out of their civil war.
It`s not that I`m against all intervention. I do see ISIS as a problem.
ISIS is now a threat to us. But I see our previous policy as having made
Sending arms to so-called moderate Islamic rebels in Syria is a fool`s
errand and will only make ISIS stronger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: A vote is expected to happen within the hour. We will bring you
the results as soon as we get them.
Republicans, I think, and Americans have to realize, Democrats as well,
that there`s no perfect plan out there to defeat ISIS. The President I
believe needs our support right now and it seems like everybody is all over
It`s not just political theater especially as to what happened last night.
It`s -- There`s no doubt that it`s pressing and it`s getting closer to
Australian authorities foiled in alleged ISIS plot to cease random victims
in the State of Sidney and publicly behead them. Nearly 1,000 police
officers fanned out overnight to conduct raids. At least 15 suspects were
Australia`s Prime Minister says a counter terrorism police intercepted a
phone call two days ago. The call was reportedly between one of the people
arrested and an alleged ISIS leader based in Mid-East.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TONY ABBOTT, PRIME MINISTER OF AUSTRALIA: Exaltations -- quite direct
exaltations were coming from an Australian who is apparently quite senior
in ISIL to networks and support back in Australia to conduct demonstration
killings here in this country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Australia stopped this plot with police action and there`s no
proof that arming Syrian rebels is going to be as effective. We hope so.
Today, the United States has carried out 176 missions in Iraq and Syria.
Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think tonight.
Tonight`s question, "Is it wise to arm Syrian rebels?" 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 this show.
I want to turn now to Chuck Todd, the moderator of Meet the Press and NBC
News Political Director. Chuck, good to have you with us tonight.
CHUCK TODD, NBC NEWS POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Thanks to you, Ed.
SCHULTZ: 71 democrats -- in fact, some of the most loyal people to the
President and some of his biggest offenders are saying no to this. This is
really a mixed bag, isn`t it?
TODD: It is. I mean, we`re seeing, you know, we talked about that there
is a lot of ideological diversity inside the two parties. Our national
security issues there are -- you`ve highlighted it very well.
You basically got isolationist versus interventionist in the Republican
Party on these issues and then you got the hawks and the doves. The basic
hawks and the doves inside the Democratic Party and those divides, they`ve
been for years and I think we`re seeing them flourish a little bit here.
And it`s -- this is not about President Obama and the way we think about
President Obama politically. I really think this is about -- a lot about
Iraq, a lot about Iraq and the memories of Iraq.
And for, I think, some of these democrats but also for some of these
Republicans that are against it, it is this question of, "How do you
prevent the slippery slope in Syria"? Because no one has really
effectively answered the question, you know, when you have military leaders
close to the President advising that you can`t roll out combat troops. The
President defiantly saying, "No, it`s just not and they`re not going to be
American combat troops. We`re going to find others to do this."
Well, that means, when you don`t find the others, who else is they`re going
to be when the military comes back to the President and says, "You need
something in there if you`re going to make your plan work." So I think
that that`s why you`re seeing this skepticism a little bit louder than
SCHULTZ: Is it part of the equation that we`re just such a war-torn
country that the President knows he just can`t go down that road or is it
does he really believe that we can get this mission accomplished with just
airpower? And I thought of telling question yesterday that was not
answered by Secretary Kerry came from Corker when he said what other
countries are going to put boots on the ground.
Somebody`s going to have to give skin on the game on this or is it of the
military thought that they can get this done with the way they haven`t set
out right now?
TODD: Look, I do think there is politics impacting the President here but
it`s not just raw-crust politics. It`s more of he believes the public
isn`t going to support the idea of long term combat troops in Syria even if
we`re talking 20 or 25,000. When I talk -- nobody is talking a hundreds of
thousands of combat troops.
When they`re talking about -- because they are talking about thousands, now
that doesn`t say, you know, that doesn`t mean thousands aren`t a lot as far
as American blood and treasure is concerned. But that`s sort of -- that`s
the open query. I think the President believes he was elected to get
America out of the Middle East, to not have America as an occupying force,
to not use ground troops that way.
And I think that`s why he is been I think -- and you can call him stubborn
but that`s why...
TODD: ... he`s been defiant about this because that`s not why he was
elected. And he knows it and he also knows it`s not sustainable with the
American public. They might support it in the short-term because a couple
of beheadings that really made Americans fearful but they`re not going to
support it long-term.
SCHULTZ: What kind of an impact do you think last night`s events in
Australia will have on the Senate vote? Would that turn anybody`s mind in
favor of the President`s plan to take some action and your thoughts on how
the Senate vote`s going to go?
TODD: Well, I think -- if anything, it`s going to probably move and I
would say more so in the Democratic side move a few. Maybe if there were
some wavering Democrats sitting and that were leaning no last night might
move to yes. Because I can tell you, I`ve been surprised and then I`m sure
you`ve been too.
The American public -- these beheadings, this action by ISIS, they`ve been
terrorizing the American public with visuals, with social media, with what
they`ve done already. It is -- had an impact on public opinion and I think
that in turn has an impact and how these members have vote. I think that`s
why the President has had frankly such an easy time.
Think about where he was a year ago when he could not get a majority in
either party support him on what he wanted to do in Syria. Now he`s got in
majorities in both parties supporting on what he wants to do in Syria.
SCHULTZ: All right.
TODD: And that`s because of the public, I think, is fearful.
SCHULTZ: OK. Chuck Todd, great to have you with us tonight. I appreciate
it so much. Moderator of the Meet the Press, you`ll see him this Sunday.
Now, let me bring in former Congressman Joe Sestak, Former Admiral of
Pennsylvania and is a three-star -- former three-star Admiral in the United
States Navy and also worked in Navy Intelligence.
Joe, unpack this for us. This is a situation where we really don`t know
who we`re arming. We think we`re arming the right people. There`s a lot
of explanation about no boots on the ground and so really the $64 question
at this hour is, "Is the President right?" Can we do this mission without
putting boots on the ground if they`ve got a force of over 30,000?
JOE SESTAK, FORMER U.S. NAVY ADMIRAL: Well, we have to separate it into
two pieces. This the Iraq piece, well we cannot permit them to have a safe
of haven? But I think you`re talking right now about the Syrian piece and
that`s why they still have about -- let`s say about half their forces
That`s a loft -- lot tougher puzzle. But we actually do know who the more
moderate rebels are. As I`ve said to you before Ed, you know, we`ve
listened in with the radio except we give them with chips in them and other
things. The Jordanian Intelligence Units there really know who they are.
Now remember ISIS is in the North. There are kind of butcher stop against
the border with Turkey and Turkey is over this.
So we are able with the other players there, the Arabs and Turks, to figure
out who the more moderate ones are, properly train, properly feed them so
to speak to go in the battle. That is a very tough thing because it means
that the suitcase on the ground has to be owned by the Arabs and the Turks
doing that work.
Lot tougher problem than it is in Iraq.
SCHULTZ: So, do -- Then no one really knows how long this is going to
take? This is so open-ended. It`s hard to -- once you get in it`s hard to
And it seems like to me watching Secretary Kerry, there are some answers he
just can`t definitively answer. And I think that what`s troubling in all
of these. There is an angle of a hope and a prayer that this is going to
work, isn`t there?
SESTAK: No, I don`t think it`s a hope and prayer but I do agree with the
overall point. I don`t think anyone can tell when -- what was called the
global war on terror is going to end. Because the global war on terror
cannot be won by the United States military.
We can stop the problem from harming us but we can`t fix it because it
takes win in the hearts and minds on people and making those places out
there less a hospitable to the terrorist.
SESTAK: I remember Ed, when two days after 9/11 happened. I`ve been
stationed in the Pentagon and I was called up by the chief of Naval
Operations and told us to establish the navies and the terrorist immunity
became known as Deep Blue. Two days later, we gave the Chief of Naval
Operations some slides and the first one said, that he took in the Mr.
Rumsfeld, "The global war of terror will go on at least for 10 years." And
folks, not long before that, this is something about the hearts and minds
of people. So you have to look at these missions as purely what do we do
to stop militarily a safe haven from residing there.
The President when he use the word destroy, I don`t he should have ISIS.
Eventually, they`re destroyed by becoming in -- people out there not
wanting them there...
SESTAK: ... and that`s a different battle.
SCHULTZ: Should Congress be going home right now because what they`re
SESTAK: Absolutely not. And the Senate should have the guts to stand up
and vote separately like the House did of do you support the President or
And I think we hear them complaining what`s the strategy, what`s this. Why
aren`t they telling where they stand on a separate vote rather than rolling
in to an overall funding bill. I think that`s frankly a shame was.
SCHULTZ: It just seems like we`re looking for the perfect plan. We`re
measuring what the cost is going to be, what the results is going to be,
what success is supposed to look at -- look like and nobody really knows
any of that.
SESTAK: Well, you know, you can step back to World War II and see some of
the problems we had as we`ve lost some of our initial battles.
Look, however, we`re much better out of them before, Ed. And this is the
problem. We lack in the Senate. And I would say the House, people who had
SESTAK: ... and understand that you need to define a mission and frankly,
the administration hasn`t always done this well. Define the benchmarks and
the means to accomplish them and then be transparent to the public. Are
you making those benchmarks?
We don`t use a way -- a means to an ends type of approach anymore. And I
think that`s disturbing. The part of the problem is this global war on
terror is eventually can be stopped by the military but you can`t fix it
and so you use the other means of our diplomatic or economic powers with
the other nations there to make the -- no one want terrorists.
SCHULTZ: So, if Joe Sestak is in the Senate tonight, you vote in favor of
this action of arming the moderate Syrian rebels and move them forward?
SESTAK: I do. And then I would do what I also learned in the military and
we tend to forget. Inspect, expect what you inspect.
The execution of this plan is what`s very vital. Are we getting Turkey not
to be a big donut with the big hole in it where things flow back and forth
across the border and they`re not helping then you can reassess your
strategy and your means to your ends to do something a little different?
I don`t think we have executed some of these items, the strategy as well.
SCHULTZ: All right. Joe Sestak, I appreciate your time tonight, sir.
SESTAK: Great to be with you. Thanks.
SCHULTZ: Thank you so much. You bet.
Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom on the screen.
Share your thoughts with this on Twitter@edshow and at wegoted and on
Facebook. We appreciate the like. We want to know what you think.
Coming up, live results from the Senate floor. The Senate is voting on
whether to grant President Obama, the authority to train and equip Syrian
rebels to battle the Islamic States.
Stay with us. We`ll have the latest.
Plus, the fight for workers rights continues. 14,000 American airline
workers voted to unionize. But let`s not stop there. Lots more coming up
The Rapid Response Panel weighs in. Stay with us. We`re right back.
SCHULTZ: What`s trending? What`s happening? Social media, join us to on
-- join our team, facebook.com/edshow, twitter.com/edshow and ed.msnbc.com.
And the podcast is up everyday at noon on wegoted.com or rawstory.com,
ringoffireradio.com and on iTunes.
Ed Show Social Media Nation has decided we`re reporting. Here are today`s
top trenders voted on by you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If it`s not Scottish it`s crap.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The number three trender, Highland Vote.
BRIAN WILLIAMS, NBC HOST: ... Scotland maybe about to do something. We
hear in the colonies did a while back.
MEL GIBSON: I can`t move in to Scotland.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scots could vote to break a way from England.
WILLIAMS: Polling remains neck-and-neck.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are split 50-50 on the methodic...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: British politicians have resorted to begging.
DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER OF THE UNITED KINGDOM: We want you to stay.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, voters want Scotland to make its own decisions
on how to spend the billions of dollars from offshore oil.
GORDON BROWN, FORMER PRIME MINISTER OF ENGLAND: The vote tomorrow is
whether you want to break and sever every link...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it`s time for us to stand on our own two feet.
BOB GEDOLF, POLITICAL ACTIVIST: You`re a part of the United Kingdom family
now. We would really love you to stay.
GIBSON: They`ll never take our freedom.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The number two trender, sideline.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Rihanna took to Twitter to lash out at network CBS.
CBS Sports yanked to Rihanna`s from its primetime NFL broadcast opting for
a more serious opening.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s supposed to be a one time pull.
RIHANNA: One time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: CBS pulls the plug on Rihanna after her pre-game
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The singer blasted the network tweeting, "Y`all are sad
for penalizing me for this."
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They pulled it because everybody was nervous and they
tried to bring it back and Rihanna called them on it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: CBS responded pulling Rihanna`s song permanently. CBS
released a statement saying that they were "moving in a different
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And today top Trender, Test Case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor Walker said people getting unemployment
benefits and food share should have to undergo a drug testing is it a good
policy or election year politics.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scott Walker wants to drug test people on public
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Walker said it would apply to able-bodied working
aged adult and without kids receiving unemployment and food stub.
GOV. SCOTT WALKER, (R) WISCONSIN: The basic requirement for just about any
employer out there is that they can pass a drug test.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They don`t know how much this will cost yet.
REP. JOCASTA ZAMARRIPA, MINORITY LEADER: At the end of the day it`s a
political, quite political statement by the governor.
WALKER: If someone wants our help, we`re more than happy to provide but
why would we set someone up for failure.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTS: Joining me tonight Wisconsin State Senator Jon Erpenbach.
Senator, good to have you with us. I think we need to point out that 11
states have implemented drug testing policies for people getting government
Florida and Georgia have had this laws overturned by the courts. So how
does Governor Walker think this is going to play in his state? I mean is
there a real burning desire? Is there fraud in Wisconsin when it comes to
government aide? Unpack it for us.
STATE SEN. JON ERPENBACH, (D) WISCONSIN: Not really no. Well first of
all, it`s not going to apply in Wisconsin then because legally the governor
can`t do it. He wants the national stage so he`s always perfectly willing
to go out and fight Washington over this. But let`s just take a look at it
for example what Florida did in the court stop that they -- less than two
percent of the people that they screened were actually caught using drugs
What the governor in Wisconsin, Governor Walker`s presuming is that anybody
who needs food stubs or unemployment check is must be on drugs so we better
drug test them. In the end it`s going to cost this a lot more money that
it`s actually worst.
Keep in mind that Wisconsin has a $1.8 billion deficit and we recently
found out that our Medicare program is going to need about another $760
million just to continue.
So I don`t know where the governor is going to get the money to pay for
this. If he gets a way with it at all but in the end it just comes to down
to his inner close race very, very close race with Mary Burke so he`s just
throwing whatever he can at the wall just to see if something sticks.
SCHULTZ: So for sure this will not save the taxpayer`s money, correct?
ERPENBACH: No. No it cost taxpayers` money. It cost taxpayers` money in
Florida. And it would`ve saved Florida money had our -- it would`ve saved
Florida taxpayers` money have they just handed out the checks and the food
stubs down to Florida rather they make people go through the drug test.
SCHULTZ: OK, so if the state`s running at deficit and this clearly would
not save the taxpayers any money or help the state treasury out, where does
this all come from? Is this is just an effort rile up the base because the
market university low poll released on Wednesday shows that Walker and the
challenger Mary Burke are tied among registered voters. But Walker does
have a slight advantage among likely voters.
So, is this just an election near politics at this point? He is trying to
get people`s attention that for one reason or another.
ERPENBACH: Very, very much so. This is actually trying to design to get
the Republican base fired up for his campaign but what the Republican base
just probably is in thinking about that if this actually happens in the
State of Wisconsin, some of them who lose a job will have to take a cup
with them along with their application for unemployment insurance and go to
the bathroom, use the cup and turn it in.
Again, in the long run what he is trying to do is he`s trying to fire up
his base. This isn`t going to cost taxpayers` money in the State of
Wisconsin. We have $1.8 billion deficit already. Some actually thinks
it`s even more. Our Medicare cost to continue is another $760 million.
ERPENBACH: This is an expensive program. I don`t know where he`s going to
get the money to do it. If he gets a way with doing at it all.
SCHULTZ: Have there been any Republican senators who have gone to the
floor saying, "Hey, we have to do this." Is this Walker`s idea or is there
are burning desire amongst his fellow lawmakers on his side that want to
get see this done?
ERPENBACH: Not. Nobody is talking about this in Wisconsin Senate Floor
over even in the Wisconsin State Assembly. Excuse me -- this is part of
Governor Walker`s jobs package. And he said this will help create job even
though it`s not going to create a single job in the State of Wisconsin
where we continue to lag not only in the Midwest but the rest of the nation
and job growth here Wisconsin. We`re really hurting for jobs in Wisconsin.
So this is part of his jobs package that won`t create a single job. In the
long run, it`s going to cost taxpayers` money. And you underscore this and
it`s really true that he is in a race for his life. His political career
could end on November 4th and so he is throwing whatever he possibly can
out there not only to rile up the base and get them going but also try and
keep on that national spotlight -- keep himself in the national spotlight
as much as he possibly can.
SCHULTZ: So you think this is the smart since things aren`t going very
well. We got to crank out the vote here. I mean, I`m hearing so much
about political exhaustion although I was in Iowa last weekend. That`s the
last thing I thought about was political exhaustion -- and I`m going to
talk about this in the next block.
People are on the issues. I know that ISIS and I know that the NFL, it`s
all out there but what are you hearing, Jon? What are Wisconsin voters
ERPENBACH: People are focusing on good family supporting jobs here in the
State of Wisconsin. People are taking a look on what`s going on with their
neighbors in the Midwest and they`re taking a look on what`s going on at
the nation as a whole. They see the nation growing, a nation grew new jobs
by about 2.8 percent last year, in Wisconsin, we`re at 1.3 percent. People
need good family supporting jobs.
So if you`re the governor and your main campaign promise like Scott
Walker`s was is I`m going to create 250,000 new jobs and he has only
created 100,000 new jobs here in the State of Wisconsin, he is not going to
want to talk about jobs. He`s going to want to talk about something else.
So you throw things out there like drug testing people who really are down
on their luck in case they need unemployment check or they need food stubs.
You put stuff out there at trying -- and detract people from how bad things
really are here in the State of Wisconsin.
ERPENBACH: ... compared to how well they`re going in other states. His
policies aren`t working and rather than talk about the fact that we can fix
things here, fix things there, we`re just going to keep our head down, keep
going and throw stuff out there like drug testing welfare recipients. It`s
SCHULT: All right, State Senator Jon Erpenbach with us tonight from
Wisconsin. Good to have you with us, Jon. Thank you so much.
We continue to follow live voting on the Senate floor. Yesterday the House
passed a bill that would allow the Defense Department to train and arm
Stay with us, we`ll have the latest.
Plus surprise, surprise more government batching by Conservatives.
Pretenders coming up.
Next your questions. Ask Ed Live here on the Ed Show on MSNBC.
We`re right back.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. I appreciate the questions in our
Ask Ed Live Segment.
Our first question comes from Denny. "If offered -- if offered, would you
accept the job or NFL commissioner?" That would be a big fat, hell, no. I
don`t want to work for billionaires. I want to work for regular folks. I
have no desire to be commissioner of the National Football League and if I
was offered it, the money looks good but no. That`s how I`m going to do
Our next question is from Jimmy. He wants to k now, "How do you think Mitt
Romney would handle the ISIS crisis if he was president today?" I don`t we
would have ever gotten out Iraq. And if we had, we`d be right back in.
That`s how I think Mitt would be doing it and I think we would be
committing troops big time and it`d be blamed on everyday behind them.
Stick around, Rapid Response Panel is next.
KATE ROGERS, CNBC CORRESPONDENT: I`m Kate Rogers with your CNBC Market
Stocks end higher off the board. The Dow grew more than 100 points to
another record. The S&P also bit a new high up to 9 and the NASDAQ adds
Oracle`s high profiled CEO Larry Ellison is stepping down from that role.
He will remain as chairman. Also the company`s latest results on missed
analyst estimates, shares are slumping after hour.
And Home Depot said 56 million payment cards were affected in a massive
data restarting in April.
That`s it from CNBC, your first in business worldwide.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. With less than 50 days until the
midterm election, I want to bring the focus back to what we have been
talking about for a long time. Jobs.
Now, right now in the new cycle we`re being bombarded -- was bombarded with
stories about ISIS, the NFL, all very important discussions no doubt about
it. But I do believe that we cannot ignore what is immediately heating the
concerns of the American people on their own kitchen table. And we need to
talk about what American families still really care about and what affects
On Tuesday, after 19 years of unionization effort American Airlines`
customer service agents finally got the vote they needed to join a joint
union. Now, the story is much more than just 9,000 workers who were going
to be getting representation and protections that they`ve been fighting
for. It is proof if management and politicians allow the process to play
out and allow the American people in the workplace to vote, you know,
there`s going to be an interesting result. They are going to go with the
side of labor.
Now, it`s proof that there is a future for the labor movement in the South.
It`s proof something can be done about the attack on labor in the American
workforce and heeding American families. It`s just not noise. Stand up
and make themselves heard that`s exactly what they did with this vote.
But when I was in Iowa last weekend, I was expecting to hear a lot of talk
about ISIS. We did a focus group down in Texas on Friday night after the
showdown in Dallas. I brought up ISIS. I brought up the Middle East.
Nobody knows anything about it.
This has really jumped on the American people. What they`re still care --
caring about is their jobs, their healthcare, their security, their family,
their future and that`s where American voters I think are going to be.
I don`t know if the NFL is going to be motivating anybody to go vote in 50
days. I don`t know if ISIS is going to be a big pusher. What`s going to
be a pusher in somebody`s future? And where there`s discrimination and
there`s a chance more to be answered at the polls? This is going to be the
pusher even in and off year election.
Now all of those statistics say that it`s going to be a low turnout. I
don`t buy that. I don`t sense that. There`s a lot of conversation about
political exhaustion. I didn`t sense that.
In Iowa over the weekend nor that I doubt in Texas last weekend.
Joining me on a Rapid Response Leo Gerard, President of United Steelworkers
International, and also Larry Cohen, President of Communication Workers of
Where is America right now? Mr. Gerard, where do you think the people are?
What are they thinking about that is not being talked about?
LEO GERARD, UNITED STEELWORKERS PRESIDENT: Well, I think they`re thinking
about what you just said. They`re thinking about the economy. They`re
thinking about jobs, they`re thinking about healthcare. They`re thinking
about their retirement. They`re thinking about their kids being able to
Those are all the debates that should be going on. Those are the debates
that Democratic candidates in every level should take to the floor and to
be talking about. And people want to have a voice. I congratulate the CWA
on their victory because what they`re proving is that workers in the South
want a voice. Workers in the South want to have an opportunity have a
I`m going to make one point. More than 50 percent of the workers responded
that if they were given the choice to have a union without incorporate or
bust interference, they have signed up right away.
People want representation. They want their voices heard and they want to
talk about the economic future, for them, their family and their kids.
SCHULTZ: It`s about security as well, and fairness in the workplace. Now,
what does this vote Larry mean about the future of the labor movement and I
mean everybody thinking, "Oh gosh, if there`s more votes, there`ll be more
participation," but it`s in the South where unions have been attacked
How do you read it?
LARRY COHEN, COMMUNICATION WORKERS OF AMERICA PRESIDENT: Yeah, the new
9,000 women and men that voted overwhelmingly to join the association that
already had existed are in basically in two states, North Carolina and
Texas. And this shows that when the elected officials don`t jump in like
they did in Tennessee and where we don`t have over a union busting.
People want to have a voice. They want to engage with their management in
a positive way and that`s what these women and men across the south as well
as some in the North voted for.
And I think Leo is right. That`s what people care about. Their economic
future, meaning in the work they do everyday, the rights at work.
Americans want to join...
COHEN: ... the 21st Century.
SCHULTZ: Mr. Cohen, how much of effect do you think it had that it was in
electronic vote, that there wasn`t somebody stands in outside seeing who
was coming in to vote and what not? What about that?
COHEN: You know, I think there`s a number of factors that`s probably
accounts for part of it. Nobody is looking over them and they had four
weeks to vote electronically either by phone or internet but, you know, I
think the main thing is as you said, they worked at it for years and years
and years. They`ve failed before to get majority, this time, they got it
and I was with a bunch of them here that flew in on their own for that vote
count. They were ecstatic and many of them were women who had worked on
this for 20 years.
SCHULTZ: Asking on a question, where are the American people? And it`s
interesting in this vote. Most of the people that are going to be affected
by this are women workers. Earlier today, Hillary Clinton had this to say
on a panel that was hosted by the Senate for American Progress. Take a
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FOMER U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: The difficulties that
women and men face in getting the kind of jobs that will provide the kind
of income that they need for themselves and their families is roiling
beneath the surface of the political debates. We all see it. We know it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Mr. Gerard, your thoughts on that?
GERARD: Well, I think that she`s right on that point she`s making. Good
jobs have been offshore, good jobs have been eliminated. We`ve seen the
erosion of manufacturing from when it was 22 percent of the Gross Domestic
Product down below 9. We`ve lost 6 to 7 million jobs as results of rotten
trade deals. She`s right about that.
We`ve seen the attack on unions since Ronald Reagan. We`ve seen the growth
of income inequality as unions have declined. We haven`t declined yet
because workers don`t want a union. We`ve declined because the system has
been waited against us. We`ve been declining because people like Corker
buttered in and help threaten the workers about joining a union.
And let me just say that if the National Labor Relations Board can organize
itself to be a modern labor relations board to give workers more electronic
voting to make sure that the voting happens quickly after they`ve identify
they want a union. People will join a union...
GERARD: ... and Ron knows the labor laws are. People are joining unions
and people want union particular in the South.
SCHULTZ: Well, this is something...
GERARD: We`re going to be there. The labor is not dying. The labor is
going to grow.
SCHULTZ: ... This is something I think American voters need to pay
attention too. What`s it going to be like if the Republicans get the
Senate, Mr. Cohen, when you`ve got Lamar Alexander, the senator from
Tennessee proposing to reform the LNRB?
COHEN: Yeah. His reforms mean got the board. He just got and said what
he really wants. So his reforms are to have three Democrats and three
Republicans require for them to make a decision and that would mean that
there won`t be any decisions made. That`s exactly what they want.
That turns it back to where it was two years ago. So this is the wake up
call that you`ve been talking about for working people across the country.
If we don`t elect a Senate that has a Democratic majority leader, we`re
going to be getting that kind of labor law when we already have the lowest
representation of any nation -- of any democracy in the world. 6 percent
of private sector workers have collective bargaining.
Lamar Alexander is a 19th century capitalist, no representation, no need to
have a board that leaves up to the preamble. The preamble of that law has
always said, promote collective bargaining. It doesn`t say create a
neutral agency. It says promote collective bargaining. Workers need
GERARD: Ed, let me just add to what Larry said. The fact to the matter is
that collective bargaining and the right to join a union is basically the
only right that`s practiced in secret. And workers that want to join a
union try to do it in secret because the lies are waded against them.
Bosses fire them, bosses called them in, give them lectures, threaten to
move the plan. Do all of those things and the outcome of that at the worst
of cases, well, I guess you get to do it again. So...
SCHULTZ: What have been...
GERARD: ... what we need it to elect the kind of people that understand -
- if Hillary Clinton is right we`ve got to have massive changes and create
policy and the policy of workers right to join the union, collective
bargaining policy, benching policy, all those things didn`t who didn`t have
access, they were brought to us by people who want to weaken the middle
SCHULTZ: The window is narrowing between now and Election Day, what are
unions going to do to get the vote out, Mr. Gerard?
GERARD: Well in our case, we`re going to put literally thousands of people
into the category of volunteering. We`re now building our ground big gain.
We`re building it effectively. We`re saying to our people, who are out
full time, your job is not to go knocking on doors. Your job is to go find
25 more people that will go knocking on doors and we`re going to have a
massive ground game in congressional districts, at the state level, at
state houses so that we can return some sanity to the economic direction of
SCHULTZ: Larry, at the CWA? What are your plans?
COHEN: Well, the newest plan in addition to what Leo said is we`re going
to take Lamar Alexander`s picture, put it on leaflets in those key seven
swing Senate seats and say, "If we don`t elect a Democrat to the Senate
from your state, this man is going to be jeering the labor committee and he
is out to destroy labor law. Which side are you on?"
SCHULTZ: All right. Leo Gerard and Larry Cohen, great to have you with us
tonight gentlemen. Thank you so much.
GERARD: Thank you. Congratulations, Larry.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, the latest from the Senate floor. After approval from
the House, the Senate is voting on a bill to approve training Syrian rebels
to fight against the Islamic States. Stay with us. We`re right back.
SCHULTZ: And in Pretenders tonight, The Red Zone. Sean Hannity and
Elisabeth Hasselbeck. He likes to throw the football a lot but he never
really play. The Fox News hosts are going for the two point conversion
covering the NFL`s personal conduct scandals.
Well, that`s just not enough. They need to slam the government too. Sean
Hannity connected Adrian Peterson`s abuse allegations with a government
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, SEAN HANNITY SHOW HOST: This is my problem with Liberals.
Because -- Here`s where my fear goes with all this. You guys want to tell
parents what they can and cannot do, for example, is it going to become
illegal if a parent teaches the politically correct view that being gay is
not normal. I think we`ve gotten to the point where, you know, if we don`t
politically correct our kids we might as well hand our kids over to the
government the day their born let them raise them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Hannity is worried parents won`t be bale to pass along
intolerance to their kids. Meanwhile, Elisabeth Hasselbeck was able to tie
the NFL`s scandals to the IRS in Benghazi. Now, Hasselbeck wrote in a
twit, "Imagine if everyone that asked for transparency in the NFL demanded
that same transparency in our government?" She sited, "Benghazi and the
IRS" In another twit, Hasselbeck? What did she do? Well, she doubled
down. She says, "Connecting the two is not ridiculous, it`s an honor."
Really? Leave it to Fox News anchors to tie someone else a suffering to
their imagined grievances against the government.
If Sean Hannity and Elizabeth Hasselbeck think that they can score
touchdown out of bounds, they can keep on pretending.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. We`re monitoring the Senate floor.
Right now, members are voting on whether to pass a measure to authorize
President Obama`s request to train and equip moderate Syrian rebels to
fight ISIS militants. This follows a vote which was approved in the house
on Wednesday by a vote of 273 to 156. And there was a lot across in the
party lines on this vote. And as we were about to send more Americans into
Iraq to train and more pilots to fly missions over Iraq, Congress is
leaving until after the election, they won`t be back until November 12th.
I am joined tonight by Lawrence Korb, Senior Fellow of the Senate for
America Progress and a Former Assistant Secretary of Defense. Mr. Korb,
good to have you with us tonight. I am struck by the limited amount of
debate, both in the House and in the Senate, on this vote which is going to
call for millions of dollars to arm Syrian rebels, moderates, whatever you
want to call them.
Is -- This is basically a situation where -- let me ask you, are we doing
security on the cheap here? Putting arms on the hands of somebody else to
do the job?
LAWRENCE KORB, FORMER ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Well, I think it`s
an idea that you`re right, it needs a lot more debate and the Senate`s
worst in the House. They`re tying it to a bill to keep the government open
until December. So you`re going to have voting to say, "Well, I really
didn`t support this but I didn`t want to close the government down." Also
on the Senate, it`s complicated because you have several people who are
running for or thinking of running for president and they remember what
happened back in 2002 to people like then Senator Clinton and Senator Kerry
who voted for the war in Iraq and it came back to haunt them when they ran
for the presidency.
SCHULTZ: So this seems to be a political setup in favor of the Democrats
to get President Obama the support. If it`s connected to shutting down the
government, nobody wants to know Democrat wants to shutdown the government
so this is an easy way to vote. This is going to tag the arm of Joe
Manchin and also Mark Begich from up in Alaska, Manchin from West Virginia
says he`s not going to vote for it. What about that?
SCHULTZ: Well, that`s true. I mean somebody like the Senator Manchin and
Senator Murphy, really got a hand into them there. You know, standing up
for principle here because it could cause them, you know, politically. And
if you take a look for example Begich himself for reelection whereas
somebody else like Senator Udall who`s also up for reelection, he said he
was going to, you know, to vote for it. And if you take a look like at the
presidential candidates, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz are against it whereas
Marco Rubio is going to vote for it.
So -- And I think then they were all be able to say, "Well, no, it wasn`t
for that. I was really for, you know, keeping the government open." I
think and I really give credit to people like Manchin and Murphy. They
want a full debate on whether we really should be, you know, getting
involved in Syria.
SCHULTZ: Well, when you take a look at how this is unfolding, Republicans
are going to be able to come back and say, certainly, I voted for it but I
wanted more, OK? If this mission doesn`t work, that`s going to be the
politics of it for them. Were the Democrats are going to end up on this?
Since that, well, certainly we`re going to support the president. We`ve
got to give him what he wants. And they can say that they wanted to go
There`s a lot of things that can go wrong with this mission but this
basically is a vote to put arms and training in the hands of people we
think are going to be loyal and it is also a situation where we`re not
going to put any boots on the ground, in fact, there is no complete plan on
this at this hour, correct?
KORB: Well, that`s right and really, what we should have a debate is our
role in Syria. I think Iraq is pretty clear. We were asked in by the
Iraqi government. There are forces on the ground there. In Syria, the
government doesn`t want us in, the international community doesn`t want us
in and it`s -- even if you can get these so-called Free Syrian Army up and
running, it`s going to take quite a while for that to happen and then when
they get in there, are they going to fight ISIL and ignore Assad which was
their whole reason for being in the first place.
SCHULTZ: Fifty, yes, 50 no. The measure is not agreed upon. Your
KORB: Well, I think then the real question is what happens to the
training? You can`t do it with the Senate. You`ll have to wait now until
November 12th but really, it will also make difficult for the Southeast to
provide the facilities for the training.
SCHULTZ: What is this in to the rest -- to the coalition out there that
the United States Senate can`t get on the same page about what to do when
they`re cutting American heads off?
KORB: Well, Ed, I think it makes it more difficult to get the coalition to
deal with the situation in Syria. Iraq? You got pretty good support there
but you don`t have it in Syria and I think this is a reflection
particularly given since it also keeps the government open. I mean that`s
SCHULTZ: So -- Yeah.
KORB: ... I think McConnel and Reid try to get the two together to get it
SCHULTZ: Well, this is not a good night for the President.
KORB: No, it is not.
SCHULTZ: He did not get what he wanted out of the Senate. This is going
to delay, in the eyes of some, our security.
KORB: Well, you know...
SCHULTZ: It`s amazing development. We got to run, Mr. Korb. I appreciate
your time tonight. Thanks so much. That is the story at this hour.
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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