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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Read the transcript to the Tuesday show

Guest: Mary Landrieu, Frank Lautenberg, Ben Cardin, Rep. Joe Sestak, Steve McMahon, John Feehery, Joan Walsh, Sen. Ron Wyden

ED SCHULTZ, HOST:  Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW

tonight from New York.

These stories are hitting my hot buttons at this hour. 

Nothing is going to stop me from holding BP accountable and all the

oil barons or the lawmakers who just don‘t seem to be doing the right thing

on this oil spill.  Now, I‘ve been critical of Louisiana Senator Mary

Landrieu.  She‘ll get her chance to return fire in just a moment. 

Joe Sestak is now leading Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter, just one

week before the primary in that state.  Sestak cleverly used George W. Bush

in a commercial to take the lead.  We‘ll talk about it. 

Plus, the Tea Partiers have been—well, they‘ve put out their most

wanted trading cards.  Classy thing to do, isn‘t it?  Nancy Pelosi is the

Joker, of course, and I don‘t think these nut jobs are playing with a full


All of that is coming up later on in the show. 

But this is the story.  I won‘t get off this story.  I guess you could

say it‘s kind of my health care gig as we were on for so many months,

because I think this is going to have such a tremendous impact on the


The story that‘s got me fired up is, of course, the oil spill.  And

what are we going to do about it?

The companies involved in one of the worst ecological disasters ever

to hit American shores testified on Capitol Hill today—Halliburton,

Transocean, British Petroleum.  Well, they‘re just pointing fingers at one

another during this congressional hearing. 


LAMAR MCKAY, CHAIRMAN, BP AMERICA:  Transocean, as owner and operator

of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, had responsibility for the safety of

drilling operations. 

STEVEN NEWMAN, CEO, TRANSOCEAN:  Liability and culpability and

ultimate responsibility for the events that resulted in the incident are

one thing, and responding to the economic impact of the event is another

thing.  And as the lease operator and the well owner, that falls on BP. 

TIM PROBERT, HALLIBURTON EXECUTIVE:  Halliburton‘s confident the

cementing work on the Mississippi Canyon 252 well was completed in

accordance with the requirements of the well owners, well construction



SCHULTZ:  Have you noticed all those CEOs look like they‘ve been

sunning and funning?  They‘re well tanned and well rested. 

They ought to be, because, you see, Transocean, they have their

mailbox in the Cayman Islands, and now they have since moved to

Switzerland.  I just wonder how much they really do pay in tax. 

They just don‘t seem to have the character to take the responsibility

for any of this.  They want to blame the next guy.  Although they cut deals

with one another, don‘t they? 

If the Congress can‘t put the heat on these companies for this, when

is it going to happen?  Some of it happened today. 


SEN. JOHN BARRASSO ®, WYOMING:  I hear one message, and the message

is, don‘t blame me.  Well, shifting this blame does not get us very far. 

SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI ®, ALASKA:  I would suggest to all three of you

that we are all in this together, because this incident is affecting—

will have impact on the development of our energy policy for this country. 

SEN. JEFF BINGAMAN (D), NEW MEXICO:  I don‘t believe it‘s enough to

just label this catastrophic failure as an unpredictable and unforeseeable



SCHULTZ:  You know, folks, I want to believe that the Congress is

serious about all of this at this time, but we have to understand the

dichotomy of all of this.  Look what‘s happening in front of us. 

You have congressional members trying to grill corporate heads when

corporate heads are lining the pockets of these politicians.  This is

wrong.  And if the Senate can‘t make this right now, I‘ll just feel like

that Washington is really broken. 

Here‘s what‘s really bad about this, especially for the liberals.  If

the liberals in power—and they have the majority, I think—if they

don‘t do something about this now, when are they going to be doing it?  Who

is going to be doing it?  What party is going to do it?  What independent-

thinking powerful political group is going to come in and say, you know

what, we‘ve to change the way we do business when it comes to major

corporations in this country when they gut our environment?

These companies are in damage control mode right now.  The game plan

has been very classic, very simple: point the finger, lawyer up, and then

go find a friendly court, and just do the tap dance in front of the Senate,

and hopefully nothing will become of it. 

The only people British Petroleum, Halliburton and Transocean, I

think, really care about are their shareholders.  Do you really think they

care if we‘re energy-independent as a country?  I don‘t think they care

about our fragile ecosystem, but that‘s just me.  And do they really care

about the middle class jobs that are in the crosshairs of this epic spill? 

President Obama says he‘s on board with lifting the liability caps on

this disaster.  The president has also asked for independent scientists to

get involved. 

Now, think about that statement.  The president wants independent

scientists to now get involved in this because the oil companies and their

engineers just can‘t figure out what they‘re going to do at this point. 

I think the tone of the hearing today was pretty much tame and lame,

because I didn‘t hear anybody say, “Gentlemen, you need to know that there

will be new regulations coming out of this.  And you‘re not going to be

able to go that deep unless you have all the safety precautions and all the

measures in place.” 

And the American people are sitting back here just wondering, is

corporate America going to be stronger than how the people feel about this


I have to tell you, I have never taken so many e-mails of people who

are furious at the lack of intensity by the Congress. 

Now, to give them a fair shake, let‘s let them—this is just day

number one.  And let‘s just hope that they‘re going to come out with some

new regulations, and that this just wasn‘t another Washington dog and pony


But if we don‘t keep the pressure on them, who‘s going to?  This story

can just go away.

By the way, where is the miner story?  How quickly we get it out of

the media. 

My issue with all of this is that if the liberals don‘t move on this -

because the conservatives do protect big oil, we know that—my issue is

if the liberals don‘t move on this, and if we don‘t lift the caps and

protect job, it‘s going to affect our economy for years to come. 

Tell me what you think in our telephone survey tonight, folks.  The

number to dial is 1-877-ED-MSNBC. 

And my question tonight is: Do you believe the oil spill will

ultimately impact every American?  Press the number “1” for yes, press the

number “2” for no.  And I‘ll bring you the results later on in the show. 

And throughout all of this, as our coverage is taking place here on

this show with the oil spill, I have been critical of a number of senators. 

One of them has been Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu. 

We invited her to come on this program.  She, of course, a member of

the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.  She was professional

enough and kind enough to come on the program tonight to answer a few


Senator, good to have you with us tonight. 


SCHULTZ:  I appreciate your time. 

I want this to be your time without interruption.  Just a few


Where are we right now, in your opinion?  And has your position

changed at all in the wake of what is unfolding off the shores of


LANDRIEU:  Well first of all, Ed, I hope to come on your show more

than just tonight.  And this hasn‘t been the first day for us.  It‘s been

three weeks of trying to contain this, not just spill, but uncontrolled

flow from BP. 

And I want to be perfectly clear with you.  I intend, as many members

of Congress do, to hold BP completely accountable in the law, regardless of

whose fault this was. 

And they admitted that today.  They are the responsible party and have

to pay all claims to people in Louisiana, Mississippi, the Gulf Coast, or

federal agencies that put out any taxpayer money. 

So I just want you to know that I am not, and no one that I know in

Congress, is trying to protect BP. 

Secondly, I‘m glad to know that you are concerned about jobs, because

we need to be.  The American people are very interested in jobs. 

And this industry, as bad as maybe some of the actors are, and as

irresponsible as some of are, Ed, one thing I hope that you can realize,

this is a big industry, and it‘s not just big oil.  It‘s small companies,

it‘s independent companies.

And in my state, alone, just Louisiana, it‘s 300,000 people that go to

work every day in this industry.  And, Ed, you can‘t just beat up on them. 

You know, they earn a living through this industry.  We want to hold

the industry accountable, but if you would upend the industry completely,

it would be bad for our economy, we‘d lose millions of jobs and put people

out of work. 

I know that‘s not what you want to do.  We want to be safe.  We must

hold them accountable. 

SCHULTZ:  Well, is it holding them accountable letting them go down

5,000 feet without all the safety precautions in place?  And to pass this

off as just an accident seems rather cavalier to a lot of Americans.  I


LANDRIEU:  That would be cavalier if that‘s what we were doing.  But

let me say, no one is passing this off.  Even those of us that support the

jobs created by this industry and realize that America actually needs this

oil, it‘s not something we can do without, at least tomorrow or the next

few years, maybe in the distant future we can, but not tomorrow unless we

want to drive this county into another recession or depression. 

SCHULTZ:  Well, nobody is trying to do that.  But they were drilling

with not all the safety precautions.  And now we are on the verge of the

worst ecological episode this country‘s ever had to deal with. 

LANDRIEU:  Well, first of all, you need to get your facts straight. 

And I know you‘re a good reporter, so you will.  But these are some of the

facts we learned today.  And we don‘t know everything. 

That America has very stringent rules.  We learned today we don‘t have

the most stringent.  That‘s obvious with what‘s happening. 

SCHULTZ:  And I‘ve said that.  That is accurate. 

LANDRIEU:  Hold on.  And you‘ve said that.  That is accurate. 

But that Transocean, that I did not have any relationship with before

this, never even knew the person that testified, but he was impressive

today.  And that‘s just not from advocates, but from critics as well, will

say that to you. 

He said that their requirements for this well exceeded what Minerals

Management had required for them.  Now, that leads you to the question, is

Minerals Management requiring enough?  We don‘t know.  We‘ll find that out. 

But let me say this, Ed.  We‘ve drilled 4,000 deep wells in the Gulf

in the last 20 years.  We drill 120 deep wells in the world every year. 

SCHULTZ:  Not at this depth. 

LANDRIEU:  Yes, at this depth. 

SCHULTZ:  Not at this depth, Senator. 

LANDRIEU:  Absolutely.  Yes, yes, yes, at this depth. 

SCHULTZ:  That‘s not the information that we have.  They have no—

LANDRIEU:  You need to check your information.  There are 120 deep-

water wells drilled in the world.  And we have drilled 41,000 wells in the

Gulf in the last 20 years.  Some of them shallow, some of them deep. 

SCHULTZ:  And they were permitted to go down to 18,000 feet? 

LANDRIEU:  Yes, they were permitted—well, not all 41,000, but 120 -


SCHULTZ:  Well, that‘s the key point.  That‘s the key—

LANDRIEU:  No, but—but this is the facts, Ed.  We have been

drilling in the deep water in the Gulf for a long time. 

Now, obviously, something terrible went wrong.  There were not enough

backup systems.  But that‘s what these hearings are about. 

And I can promise you, no one‘s going to let the industry skid.  We‘re

going to make BP pay. 

And, I might say, and you know because you‘ve heard me say this

before, when will America realize that the Gulf Coast states need revenue-

sharing?  Do you know how much money the federal treasury gets from this

industry every year?  An average of $5 billion.  Do you know how much money

Louisiana gets?  Not one single penny. 

SCHULTZ:  But Senator, I‘m not disputing that.  Senator, I‘m not

disputing that, but what I am saying is that it can‘t be about the money

all the time.  There‘s other ways for us to do this.  And for them to be

down there that far without an acoustics switch, someone failed in


Now, let me finish up with just a final question. 

LANDRIEU:  You may be correct, but hold on about the money.  Tell that

to the fishermen that are out of work.  They‘re looking for a paycheck. 

SCHULTZ:  Oh, I believe me, I am. 

LANDRIEU:  How about the money for the booms?  That‘s expensive.  And

we need more of those. 

So, it really is about the money.  And it‘s about being fair to the

coastal states—Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama—that have

been drilling for this oil for years.  The nation needs it, and we want to

share that revenue to protect our coasts and protect the environment. 

And you know what, Ed, who‘s fought us?  Both the industry and some of

the environmentalists have fought us.  So I hope now people will realize—

SCHULTZ:  Well, your fellow Senator in the Democratic Caucus, Bill

Nelson, says big oil gets what it wants. 

Do you agree with that?

LANDRIEU:  That is not true. 


LANDRIEU:  And Bill Nelson—that is not true.  And it also is true

that there are a lot of independents in this industry, and that there are

many people that work in this industry that are good people.  Bill Nelson

has a lot of good people that work in Florida.  We have tourism, too, but

our coast is a working coast.  We need to balance it.

SCHULTZ:  Finally, Senator, I‘m short on time here.  Are you for

unlimited caps in liability? 

LANDRIEU:  I am for BP paying every single penny that they owe.  And

if we can raise the caps without crashing the entire industry, then I‘m for

it.  But I‘m not for putting people out of work.  I‘m for putting people in

work, to work. 

SCHULTZ:  So unlimited does not fit with you? 

LANDRIEU:  Well, if it puts the industry out of work, no. 

SCHULTZ:  All right.

LANDRIEU:  Now, if we can do it in a way that doesn‘t put the industry

out of work, and holds BP accountable, I‘m for it.  Ed, if you haven‘t

checked, we can‘t lose any jobs in America.  We need every one.

SCHULTZ:  Oh, I know that.  But we can‘t lose the environment either. 

LANDRIEU:  Right, we can‘t lose our jobs either. 

SCHULTZ:  Senator, I appreciate you being on. 

LANDRIEU:  Thank you.

SCHULTZ:  Thanks so much. 

LANDRIEU:  Thank you. 

SCHULTZ:  Joining us now is New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg.  He‘s

a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, and he‘ll be

joining us in just a moment. 

We should point out that Senator Landrieu has taken $1.8 million from

BP over the last 10 years.  And she‘s also taken money from the anti-


But I‘m not convinced.  And I don‘t think that there‘s enough

oversight, and we will have her on the program again talking more about


You just can‘t look at this number and say that people aren‘t affected

by that.  And I will give her an opportunity again to come back and talk

about it. 

We‘ve got to move along.  We‘re short on time tonight because that

interview went rather long. 

We‘ll get Senator Lautenberg on at another time. 

When we come back here on THE ED SHOW, here on MSNBC, now the Tea

Partiers really have nothing to party about.  A new report shows our taxes

are the lowest they‘ve been in 60 years. 

We‘ll have that and so much more coming up here on THE ED SHOW.

Stay with us. 


SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.

For more on the oil disaster, let me bring in New Jersey Senator Frank

Lautenberg, a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee.  He has

also helped lead the effort of the Senate to raise the liability cap. 

Senator, good to have you with us tonight.

SEN. FRANK LAUTENBERG (D), NEW JERSEY:  Good to be here, Ed. 

SCHULTZ:  Liability cap—talk to us about what it should be.  I have

suggested and many of our listeners have responded that there shouldn‘t be

any cap at all. 

What do you think of that? 

LAUTENBERG:  Well, I think that‘s probably right, except that right

now it‘s only $75 million.  It‘s peanuts, forgive me.  We have a bill in

place that‘s going to bring it up to $10 billion, but we could take the cap

off that very well. 

When they make a mistake like this—and it is a mistake—they made

promises that there would be no chance of this kind of a mishap, but there

is.  And since 2002, Ed, we‘ve had six major oil spills in this country,

and lots of minor ones that are still very damaging. 

So, who should pay for it, the citizens who are hurt, the people who

lose jobs, the people who lose their homes or otherwise? 

SCHULTZ:  Senator, how did you come to the $10 billion figure? 

LAUTENBERG:  Well, that was, perhaps, you might say, arbitrary, but it

was something that they would feel if an accident like the one that we‘re

looking at is happening.  This is going to obviously grow past $1 billion

like nothing. 

SCHULTZ:  Frank, is this a game-changer, you think, for energy in this


LAUTENBERG:  Well, it should be a game-changer, because one of the

things that we determined from the lips of the BP representative who

testified at my committee just now is that he thinks they did reduce their

investments in alternative energy, they just, for some strange reason—

they had an increase in the quarter of $3.2 billion in earnings.  An

increase up to—it‘s incredible to look at those kinds of earnings when

the country is reeling from economic shock.

And these guys are going along making ever more money.  Five companies

made $23 billion in the quarter. 

SCHULTZ:  They can sure spread that along, I think, with unlimited


Senator Lautenberg, good to have you with us tonight.  Thanks so much,


LAUTENBERG:  Good to be with you. 

SCHULTZ:  Now on to some other big story business out of the nation‘s


Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan will have her first meetings with

senators on Capitol Hill tomorrow.  But already, Oklahoma Republican Jim

Inhofe says that he will vote against Kagan. 

He‘s not interested in even meeting with her or hearing what she has

to say about her confirmation hearing.  He‘s just going to say no. 

Inhofe is the only Republican to oppose Kagan outright, but the rest

of the Republicans got their talking points in order—she‘s never been a

judge and she‘s not qualified for the court. 

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell even suggested that Kagan, who is a

top lawyer for the United States government, might require on-the-job

training.  I can‘t believe what they‘re saying about this nominee. 

For more, let me bring in Maryland Senator Ben Cardin.  He‘s a member

of the Senate Judiciary Committee. 

Senator, nice to have you with us tonight. 

It appears to me that your opponents there in the Senate and on right-

wing radio are making Kagan out to be an intern. 

SEN. BEN CARDIN (D), MARYLAND:  Ed, I think this person—I think

Elena Kagan has incredible credentials, a background that I think will be

extremely helpful.  She knows the Supreme Court.  She works at the Supreme

Court as the solicitor general of the United States. 

She has broad experience both as a professor, as a dean, in an

administration, and as solicitor general.  So, no, she has the experience

and she has the knowledge of the Supreme Court, which I think is critical

for the next justice. 

SCHULTZ:  Will any Republicans come on board?  She got seven votes for

the position of solicitor general.  Do you think any of those will come


CARDIN:  Well, it‘s hard to predict the strategies of the Republicans. 

But I think that she should be judged on her record.  This shouldn‘t be a

partisan division. 

We should have a civil debate.  We should consider this in a timely

way.  I think that when you look at her credentials—and we‘ll see how

the confirmation hearing goes—I am hopeful we‘ll have Republicans who

support it. 

SCHULTZ:  OK.  And this has become really a political football again. 

Is this—will this be just as tough as the Sonia Sotomayor hearings, or


CARDIN:  Well, I think the—

SCHULTZ:  I mean, she hasn‘t—and the big thing is that she hasn‘t

had any judicial experience, the first nominee in 40 years to be in that


Does that bother you at all? 

CARDIN:  No, it doesn‘t at all.  I mean, if you look at some of the

great justices and chief justices over the history of the Supreme Court,

you find many who didn‘t come with judicial experience. 

She has legal experience.  She has knowledge of the Supreme Court. 

Look, I think when everything is said and done, that the process

that‘s been set, this is the Supreme Court of the United States, the Senate

has an obligation for an in-depth review during the confirmation process. 

I just hope it‘s a civil debate and that the members make their judgment on

her qualifications and not to make this political. 

SCHULTZ:  Senator, good to have you with us.  Thanks so much.

CARDIN:  Ed, it‘s always nice to be with you. 

SCHULTZ:  You bet, sir. 

Coming up, the same person that said Sarah Palin is extraordinarily

qualified to be the president is slamming President Obama for dumbing down

the Supreme Court?  Oh, we‘ve got a newcomer lander in the “Zone.”

Plus, Tiger Woods gets fired. 

The governor of Arizona slamming those who are against the law. 

We‘re right back here on THE ED SHOW.  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  And in “Psycho Talk” tonight, we welcome a new member to the

crazy club—Reaganite Bay Buchanan. 

Yesterday on CNN, she ripped into President Obama‘s Supreme Court

pick, Elena Kagan. 


BAY BUCHANAN, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST:  Do you know what this says about

Obama?  He‘s gone safe.  It‘s an election year.  He doesn‘t want too much

controversy.  Let‘s pick somebody who hasn‘t done anything. 

Very, very safe.  We go to Harvard, everybody will say—


BUCHANAN:  It is absolutely true. 

What makes her qualified?  She has no—being a president of Harvard

makes you qualified?  It does not.  What he‘s done is dummy down—

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR:   Was Sonia Sotomayor a safe pick?

BUCHANAN:  Absolutely not.  He has dummied down the Supreme Court. 


SCHULTZ:  You want to know why CNN is going to the toilet?  There‘s

some heavy political insight.  The dean of the Harvard Law School would

dummy down the Supreme Court?  Now, that‘s coming from a political

operative who had this to say about Sarah Palin back when she was running

for vice president -- 


BUCHANAN:  John McCain has made a remarkable decision.  It was quite -

looking back, it‘s brilliant.  She has one accomplishment after another,

all of which are very much on a—

LARRY KING, HOST, “LARRY KING LIVE”  So you have no concerns about her

being president? 

BUCHANAN:  None.  Not only am I not concerned, she is extraordinarily



SCHULTZ:  Oh, what a classic piece of audio that was.  Saying Elena

Kagan is unqualified to sit on the Supreme Court, after insisting that the

quitter from Alaska, Sarah Palin, who writes her talking points on her

hand, would be qualified to be the leader of the free world, that is some

serious “Psycho Talk.”  

Coming up, they‘re getting down to the dirty.  They‘re getting down

and dirty in Pennsylvania.  Congressman Joe Sestak has closed the gap on

Senator Arlen Specter, and now he‘s going for the jugular and reminding

everybody just how tight Specter once was with W.

He‘ll join me in just a moment. 

And the Tea Partiers are selling America‘s most wanted trading cards. 

They think Nancy Pelosi is the Joker.  I‘ll show them something that will

turn their entire world upside-down. 

Plus, “The Maverick” needs acting lessons, Tiger gets canned, and

“Playboy” is going 3-D. 

You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC.  Stay with us.


SCHULTZ:  Welcome back to THE ED SHOW.  The battleground story

tonight, all eyes turn to Pennsylvania one week from tonight.  It‘s become

the battleground for progressives.  Congressman Joe Sestak was counted out

when he decided to challenge coveted Democratic Senator Arlen Specter.  For

much of this year, Sestak has been way behind, upwards of 30 points.  But

last week his campaign went up with an ad reminding Democrats that Specter

was once endorsed by George W. Bush. 

Now seven days out from the primary, Sestak is surging, and Arlen

Specter‘s camp is scrambling to remind Democrats that he has the backing of

the current president. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  President Obama and newspapers across Pennsylvania

agree, Arlen Specter is the real deal. 


things about Arlen Specter.  He came to fight for the working men and women

of Pennsylvania.  And Arlen Specter cast the deciding vote in favor of a

Recovery Act that has helped pull us back from the brink.  Because you know

he‘s going to fight for you, regardless of what the politics are. 

SEN. ARLEN SPECTER (D), PENNSYLVANIA:  I‘m Arlen Specter and I approve

this message. 

OBAMA:  I love you, and I love Arlen Specter. 


SCHULTZ:  Joining me now is Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak, who

is challenging Senator Specter in the Democratic primary.  Congressman,

good to have you on tonight.  Let‘s go down the list. 

REP. JOE SESTAK (D), PENNSYLVANIA:  Good to be back. 

SCHULTZ:  Politically, it doesn‘t get heavier than having President

Obama on your side.  Along with Joe Biden, along with John Kerry, and Ed

Rendell, governor of Pennsylvania, said that if you ran against Arlen

Specter, you‘d get killed in the primary.  Here you are leading.  What‘s

the key?  Is it George W. Bush connected to Specter?  What do you think? 

SESTAK:  No.  That‘s part of it.  What‘s really the matter is—and

if you went around with me to the 67 counties, to the over 500 events, as

I‘ve done since one January, you would find people have lost any faith that

Washington, D.C., could do something right.  They feel it‘s broken down in

Washington.  And they know that no career politician, particularly one

who‘s been there 30 years and advanced the Republican agenda, can actually

be asked to clean up the mess that they created. 

They got slammed in this recession.  While I appreciate the Democratic

establishment feeling like they needed to deal with someone, and I don‘t

begrudge them that—in fact, Pennsylvanians are pretty independent-

minded.  And now that they‘re focused on this primary, as they‘re trying to

hold on to the jobs they have, or trying to regain one, they‘re really

looking for someone that they might believe in again. 

SCHULTZ:  Senator Specter told me on the radio today that he changed

parties because he wanted to get re-elected, he wanted to keep his job. 

And of course President Obama came out early on, got him to switch from the

Republicans to the Democratic party.  Is this a deal just playing out?  Is

this a bad deal playing out? 

SESTAK:  Look, I don‘t begrudge the president for having made that

deal, nor for trying now to keep his end of the bargain.  After all, Arlen

Specter opposed Solicitor General Kagan when she went up for that thing,

and the president needs him until we get a real Democrat in that office for


SCHULTZ:  Arlen Specter is not a real Democrat? 

SESTAK:  No, I think as he said, very much, is that he really is not

going to be a loyal Democrat.  I mean, he very much supported George Bush. 

He very much said to Rick Santorum, when Rick said I‘ll only give you my

endorsement when you run against Pat Toomey if you promise that whomever

President Bush nominates for the next two positions on the Supreme Court,

you‘ll vote for them.  So he finds somebody who claims to be independent,

was carrying the water of the right wing. 

In short, I don‘t think whether it‘s Republican or independent, it

seems to be more the Specter party.  I appreciate him.  He‘s done some good

things.  But his time has come and gone after down there for 30 years. 

They need someone who is in it with conviction and core beliefs and willing

to stand up, as John F. Kennedy once said, sometimes the party asks too


SCHULTZ:  Would you be a friend of—I have to ask you, Joe, will you

be a friend of labor?  Because labor‘s big in Pennsylvania.  Employee Free

Choice Act is huge with labor right now.  Will you support that?  Will you

be a friend of labor? 

SESTAK:  I‘m an original co-sponsor and voted for it my first year

here and co-sponsor my second.  My overall voting record of the AFL-CIO is

97 percent.  My third grade daughter would fail with the 61 percent AFL-CIO

voting record that Arlen Specter has. 

Why am I for them?  Because they‘re the backbone of the working force. 

I‘m a strong supporter. 

SCHULTZ:  Are you going to be standing here a week from tonight

victorious, headed for the Toomey showdown? 

SESTAK:  Yes.  But I‘m also going to be standing here as a public

servant for the working families.  And I‘m willing to lose my job as a

senator later on in fighting for the policies with this president that I

want to be the strongest ally with, not a yes man, obviously, in order to

bring about the policies that working families and those who want to work

have to have. 

SCHULTZ:  Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.  Congressman

Joe Sestak from Pennsylvania. 

Now let‘s get some rapid fire response from our panel on these stories

tonight.  The midterm campaign pandering is out in full force.  Senator

John McCain has border police shilling for him in a new campaign about the

dang fence.

And everyone‘s talking about the Ohio Democratic party‘s topless ad

against Republican Senate Candidate Rob Portman. 

And one of the most significant changes in health care reform went

into effect this week.  Young adults can now stay on their parents‘

insurance until they are the age of 26.  The Chamber of Commerce is

slamming it as government over-reach. 

With us tonight, Democratic strategist Steve McMahon and also

Republican strategist John Feehery with us tonight.  All right, gentlemen,

we have a lot to talk about tonight.  Pandering out in full force.  John,

explain John McCain‘s ad.  He‘s been in Washington since 1982, and he

hasn‘t stopped illegal immigration.  Yet, he says he‘s got the answers for

it.  Does he have any credibility? 


agreed with John McCain when he pushed for comprehensive immigration

reform.  I agree with him today.  We have to do something about the border. 

We have to secure the border in Arizona.  The situation in Arizona, as

we‘ve talked about on this show time and time again, Ed, is getting

increasingly perilous.  The number one state as far as kidnappings.  The

drug war is coming over the border. 

So John McCain is exactly right on this issue.  We‘ve got to secure

the southern border. 

SCHULTZ:  Here‘s the ad that we‘re talking about.  We‘ll get response

from Steve.  Here it is. 


SEN. JOHN MCCAIN ®, ARIZONA:  Home invasions, murder. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  We‘re out-manned.  Of all the illegals in America,

more than half come through Arizona. 

MCCAIN:  Have we got the right plan? 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Plan‘s perfect.  You bring troops, state, county

and local law enforcement together. 

MCCAIN:  And complete the dang fence. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  It will work this time.  Senator, you‘re one of


MCCAIN:  Home invasions, murder—

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  We‘re out-manned.  Of all the illegals in America,

more than half come through Arizona. 


SCHULTZ:  Steve, what do you think of that? 

STEVE MCMAHON, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST:  Wow.  I have to tell you, the

maverick that we used to see in Washington, D.C., has become a typical

career politician who is now desperate to save his job, and seems to be

willing to say anything to do it.  You know, this is a guy who co-sponsored

the Kennedy/McCain Immigration Reform Bill, which was a responsible measure

that recognized that 12 or 13 million people are here, created a path to


We absolutely have to secure the borders.  That‘s correct.  John

McCain is talking about building a fence now, which isn‘t the John McCain

of two or three years ago.  It‘s the John McCain who‘s scared in a

Republican primary. 

SCHULTZ:  Did I hear it right in that commercial?  He asked the

officer if we‘ve got the right plan.  John, isn‘t John McCain supposed to

know what the right plan is after all these years? 

FEEHERY:  Ed, you know, it‘s never a bad idea to ask the folks on the

border who are actually protecting America if this is the right plan, which

he did and he got the right answer.  Listen, this is smart politics.  John

McCain‘s probably going to win that primary, by the way. 

SCHULTZ:  OK.  Let‘s go to Ohio.  This is an ad against Rob Portman,

who is running for Senate.  And the working folk of America in Ohio

reminding him exactly where the jobs went.  It‘s pretty clever.  Here it



UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Jobs out of Ohio.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  -- supported tax breaks for companies moving over


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  When he served as Bush‘s czar -- 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  -- letting the national debt -- 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  -- swell by 500 billion dollars. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Stand in solidarity. 

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  With Ohio workers. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Let‘s let them know how many people. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Lost the shirts off their backs. 


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  We‘ll deliver a shirt in your name. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Go to this website. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Sign up today. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Stay in solidarity. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  With Ohio workers. 


SCHULTZ:  Steve McMahon, rate it from one to ten.  Is it effective? 

MCMAHON:  That‘s a great ad.  It‘s a ten.  It‘s effective.  It‘s

memorable.  It‘s funny.  But it makes a very serious point, and it reminds

people of what the Bush administration and Rob Portman did to Ohio.  It‘s

going to work very, very well there. 

SCHULTZ:  What do you think, John? 

FEEHERY:  Since Ted Strickland and Lee Fisher got into office, the

unemployment rate has doubled in Ohio.  This is not a problem with Rob

Portman.  It‘s with the Democrats.  Ohio is dependent on exports.  Without

exports, the jobs don‘t come back to Ohio.  Rob Portman‘s got the right

plan.  Lee Fisher does not. 

SCHULTZ:  Let‘s—

MCMAHON:  Rob Portman, George Bush.  The same thing that‘s going to

happen to him is happening to Arlen Specter right now. 

FEEHERY:  Long time ago.  Nice try. 

SCHULTZ:  Wait a minute, John, they did lose more jobs under President

Bush than they have under President Obama. 

FEEHERY:  Since Ted Strickland and Lee Fisher have begun in office,

the unemployment rate has doubled in Ohio. 

MCMAHON:  Who was the president?  Who was the president when that was


FEEHERY:  It‘s about Ohio right now, Steve.  And—

MCMAHON:  That‘s happened all across the country, John.  It‘s happened

all across the country.  Who was the president when it happened? 

FEEHERY:  This is about the Democrats in Ohio.  They led the state


MCMAHON:  Did they ruin the whole country, too? 

FEEHERY:  The unemployment rate has doubled in Ohio—


MCMAHON:  Did they ruin the whole country too?  Who was the president? 

I‘m just—refresh my memory.  We‘re talking about the rest of the

country.  What was the condition of the country when President Obama got


FEEHERY:  The unemployment in Ohio doubled with Ted Strickland as


MCMAHON:  Uh-huh. 

FEEHERY:  That‘s why that ad doesn‘t work. 

SCHULTZ:  It doesn‘t work?  I mean—

MCMAHON:  It‘s going to work. 

SCHULTZ:  The outsourcing was pushed by the Republicans.  Their tax

policies didn‘t that, undoubtedly.  Their corporate breaks and what not. 

Let‘s move forward to health care.  All right, the Chamber of Commerce is

slamming the president for making sure that people under 26 years old are

going to be able to be on their parents‘ insurance policy.  What about

that, Steve? 

MCMAHON:  Well, listen, I think actually this is a case where the

insurance companies moved first.  They moved where the country‘s going. 

They moved to where the bill required.  They moved early.  Good for them. 

Everybody else ought to move with them.  Kids ought to be able to stay on

their parents‘ policies.  If the insurance industry realizes that, I don‘t

know why anybody else wouldn‘t. 

SCHULTZ:  John, where do you come down on that?  Isn‘t this good for


FEEHERY:  Well, it‘s great if you have a kid who‘s 21 to 26 who

doesn‘t have a job.  It‘s really bad if you don‘t because your premiums are

going to go up significantly.  If you‘re paying more, that‘s the problem

with this.  All these good intentions lead to higher premiums for folks.  A

lot of these folks are already struggling with paying their premiums.  This

is going to be the unintended consequence of this legislation. 

SCHULTZ:  Steve McMahon, John Feehery, great to have you with us

tonight.  Thanks so much. 

Coming up, the big oil slickers were short on the answers and long on

the finger pointing today.  Senator Ron Wyden isn‘t having it and he will

be here to smack them down coming up in the playbook.


SCHULTZ:  And in my playbook tonight, there was plenty of blame to go

around during today‘s hearings on the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. 

Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon hammered BP for failing to address a history of

safety problems. 


SEN. RON WYDEN (D), OREGON:  We understand that the specific cause for

the Deep Water Horizon disaster isn‘t known.  But this sure fits, in my

view, a pattern, a pattern of serious safety and environmental problems at


LAMAR MCKAY, CHAIRMAN, BP AMERICA INC.:  What I‘m telling you is I

have not been aware of or seen deficiencies in the Gulf of Mexico systems. 

WYDEN:  And I‘m still not clear what changes have been made after Tony

Hayward said there were going to be changes made. 

MCKAY:  Well, it gets down to the agenda and the culture of the


WYDEN:  It sure does.  The culture of this company is that there‘s

been one accident of another. 


SCHULTZ:  Now it‘s time for the next step.  I want to know what

Congress plans to do to hold these oil barons accountable.  Senator Ron

Wyden, Oregon, joins me now on THE ED SHOW.  Senator good to have you with

us.  Did we make any progress today?  What do you think? 

WYDEN:  I think we did shed some light on this situation.  The fact of

the matter is the principle federal agency in this area, the Minerals

Management Agency, Ed, has simply been too cozy with this industry.  We‘ve

documented some of the financial mischief there in the past.  Now we‘re

getting on top of some of the safety concerns. 

Secretary Salazar is coming forward with what I think is a promising

proposal that could put more scrutiny on the safety side.  I think it‘s


SCHULTZ:  Well, was it a mistake, in your opinion, for them to be down

that deep without all the safety precautions like an acoustics switch in


WYDEN:  Certainly you get the sense, today, that there were not

adequate backup systems. 

SCHULTZ:  Will this bring new regulations? 

WYDEN:  I hope this time the committee stays at it until we get the

changes that are necessary.  One of the parts of the BP story that‘s so

troubling is that after these accidents, the company always says that

they‘re going to turn around things.  It‘s going to get better.  They‘re

going to have tougher standards.  Yet, there‘s another accident.  There are

serious questions in my mind about whether BP is even keeping up with other

companies‘ standards in this area. 

SCHULTZ:  Can you go along with the theory of dollar for dollar,

unlimited caps?  No matter what damage is done that, to make these

companies whole—these Americans are going to lose their jobs, lose their

industry, not to mention what it‘s going to do to the environment.  We

could be looking at decades of problems here. 

WYDEN:  There was a lot of dancing around, a lot of semantics with

respect to paying claims.  Here‘s the bottom line: I‘m going to insist on

all legitimate claims being paid.  There are too many folks that are

hurting there, working families, folks who deserve a fair shake.  All

legitimate claims have got to be paid. 

We‘re not going to let them squirm out with a bunch of legalistic

definitions of a claim. 

SCHULTZ:  Senator, good to have you with us tonight. 

Final page in the playbook tonight, it just keeps getting worse for

Tiger Woods.  He was just fired by his swing coach, Hank Haney, one of the

best.  At least that‘s Haney‘s side of the story.  Haney has been working

with Tiger for seven years.  Had a lot of success.  He said that he and

Tiger will always be friends, but the time has come for him to move forward

in other areas of his life. 

Coming up, it‘s time for the Tea Partiers to take off those wacky

costumes, all that moaning they‘ve been doing about paying taxes is based

on what?  Nothing.  You won‘t believe what‘s coming up next.


SCHULTZ:  Finally tonight on THE ED SHOW, the Tea Partiers, well,

they‘re out for liberal blood this election season.  One group has even

gone so far as to put out playing cards featuring their top targets in

2010.  The deck, of course, modeled after the cards the Bush administration

created in 2003 after the invasion of Iraq.  Those cards depicted Iraq‘s

most wanted.  The Tea Partiers‘ version is called America‘s Most Wanted. 

It features House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry

Reid as jokers. 

A couple Republicans made it into the deck as well.  Senator John

McCain is the ace of spades.  And incidentally, the Ace of spades is the

most—is Iraq‘s most wanted deck was Saddam Hussein.  Now we all know the

Tea Party‘s big problem with big government is taxation.  They hate taxes. 

A new report should bag that complaint.  As it turns out, last year,

Americans paid their lowest level of taxes since 1950.  For more on that,

let‘s bring in Joan Walsh, editor in chief,  This, of course, is

averaging out all incomes over all regions across the country, but it is a

rather interesting report that‘s out there.  Joan, does this take the wind

out of their sales?  What do you think? 

JOAN WALSH, SALON.COM:  It doesn‘t, Ed.  It really doesn‘t.  Not to

make a pun, but they‘re not playing with a full deck in the Tea Party.  You

know, I went to a Tea Party last year.  And I talked to this guy who told

me he made 45,000 dollars and that his taxes went up.  I was like, no, they

didn‘t.  Your taxes went down.  President Obama lowered your taxes.  He

insisted I was wrong. 

So, you know, they have their own facts.  They have their own point of

view.  I don‘t see them letting this information permeate their world view. 

SCHULTZ:  Here is a Pennsylvania campaign ad supporting Republican Tim

Burns.  Let‘s take a look at it. 


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Once Nancy Pelosi was safely confined to liberal

San Francisco.  But Harry Reid and Barack Obama had other plans. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:   Under my plan, electricity rates would

necessarily skyrocket. 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Now, gorged on our taxpayer dollars, Pelosi has

grown into a power hungry goliath, defying the will of the American people. 

Who has the power to stop her?  Who can save America? 

You, the Pennsylvania voter.  Vote May 18th


SCHULTZ:  Fear merchants galore.  What do you think? 

WALSH:  Oh, you know, Ed, I think they have mommy issues.  I think

they really need to see somebody about that.  Because Nancy Pelosi does not

want to hurt them.  You know, they‘ve been running against Nancy since

2006.  And it didn‘t win—didn‘t work.  They took—you know, the

Democrats took back the Congress in 2006.  It doesn‘t work.  It scares

politicians.  It doesn‘t scare voters. 

SCHULTZ:  And the numbers show this, when it comes to whether we think

we‘re overtaxed: 48 percent of the people say taxes are too high.  That‘s

near a 50-year low.  Of course, 45 percent of the people in the Gallup poll

say the taxation is about right.  We‘re divided down the middle on just

about everything in this country. 

WALSH:  Right. 

SCHULTZ:  How much of a play do you think the Tea Partiers will make,

and will they be a political force?  I mean, they‘re taking credit for

Senator Bennett being ousted by the GOP in Utah. 

WALSH:  I think they will be and have been a political force in the

Republican party, and they seem to be pulling it to the right.  I mean,

John McCain will be a big test.  We‘ve seen McCain move as far right as he

can.  He‘s not a maverick anymore. 

For them to make him their ace of spades is pretty interesting and

pretty significant.  If he holds on, that will be bad news for them.  I

expect them to be a force, especially, maybe only in Republican primaries. 

They‘ve proven that they can do that. 

SCHULTZ:  Joan, make the call in Pennsylvania.  One week from tonight,

Sestak or incumbent Senator Arlen Specter?  What do you think? 

WALSH:  Sestak seems to be surging and he has managed to tie Specter

to Bush.  And, you know, people just really don‘t trust somebody who flip-

flops in the way that Senator Specter did.  So I think the momentum is

certainly with Sestak.  We‘ll see, though. 

SCHULTZ:  Joan Walsh,, always a pleasure.  Thanks so much.

WALSH:  Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ:  Tonight in our phone survey I asked, do you believe this oil

spill will ultimately impact every American?  Ninety eight percent of you

responded yes; only two percent of you said no. 

That‘s THE ED SHOW.  I‘m Ed Schultz.  For more information on THE ED

SHOW , you can go to our radio website at, or go to  “HARDBALL” with Chris Matthews starts right now on the place

for politics, MSNBC.  We‘ll see you back here tomorrow night right here for

THE ED SHOW, 6:00 Eastern. 




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