Guests: Al Sharpton, Jon Ralston, Heidi Harris, Jim Moran, Joe Madison, Bob Shrum, Anthony Weiner, Roy Sekoff
ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC ANCHOR: Good evening, Americans, and welcome to THE ED SHOW, coming to you live from Las Vegas, where Harry Reid just knocked down Sharron Angle.
These stories are hitting “My Hot Buttons” at this hour in Vegas.
Well, the Republican power grab needs to be fought back tooth and nail, but all the president‘s talking about today is compromise.
Uh-oh, Mr. President. What the heck‘s going on here? These people want to take you down. They want to break your presidency.
My commentary, plus Reverend Al Sharpton‘s intervention, in just a moment.
The Tan Man‘s disruptive dreams are—well, they‘re coming true. Speaker Boehner is now in charge. Democrats need to stop him in his tracks.
Congressman Jim Moran is on the front lines in tonight‘s “Battleground” story.
Does “Caribou Barbie” have the plague? Her favorite psycho-talkers went down in flames last night on election night, and it‘s got Republicans standing upwind of her. She stinks politically.
But this is the story that has me fired up tonight.
I guess you could say that the hourglass has been turned on the Obama administration by his own base, and it‘s not because of the Republican victories last night. And I think here‘s where we are.
The president needs to define his direction or he risks being defined by the people who want to politically destroy him. So here‘s the first reaction from the White House to the election results.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think I‘ve been willing to compromise in the past, and I‘m going to be willing to compromise going forward on a whole range of issues. What we‘re probably going to have do is say here‘s some areas where there‘s just too much disagreement between Democrats and Republicans. We can‘t get this done right now, but let‘s not wait. Let‘s go ahead and start making some progress on the things that we do agree on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Compromise? Compromise? Are you kidding me?
They‘re not about that. The new Republican Speaker of the House, Mr.
President, he is not going to compromise on one thing.
Let me make this prediction tonight: John Boehner will not compromise on anything. He‘s made that very clear time and time again. And the same story is over in the Senate. Mitch McConnell‘s top priority is to make President Obama a one-term president.
Earlier this week, it sounded like President Obama kind of understood that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: The Republican leader of the House says, “This is not a time for compromise.” That‘s a quote. The Republican leader of the Senate said his main goal for the next two years, his top priority, is to win the next election and to beat me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: See, now, that‘s what the president should have said today at the press conference, kind of reverse those bites. But after watching the president today, seriously, folks, I‘m starting to wonder if he even wants this job anymore.
The press conference was lame. It was vanilla. Can we all agree that the Obama movement in 2008, it wasn‘t built from the center out, it was built from the base up.
Now Republicans—you know about them? Oh, yes, they get it.
Ironically, the Democrats are in the same place the Republicans were in two years ago. The Republicans went behind closed doors. They decided to take down the president. They attacked with a record number of filibusters and constant attacks to politically nuke the Democratic agenda.
OK, they‘re halfway home. Got our attention yet?
So the righties, what they did is they stood on principles and they never backed down. And I am absolutely stunned tonight a day after the election that the president didn‘t show his base that he even wants to fight. In fact, I don‘t even think there is a fight.
Take a look at how the Republicans play the game. Do we need a reminder?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAND PAUL ®, KENTUCKY SENATOR-ELECT: They say that the U.S. Senate is the world‘s most deliberative body. Well, I‘m going to ask them to deliberate upon this—the American people are unhappy with what‘s going on in Washington. Eleven percent of the people approve of what‘s going on in Congress. But tonight there‘s a Tea Party tidal wave, and we‘re sending a message to them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: OK. You know, in a roundabout way I kind of respect that.
Where‘s our tidal wave? The liberal base isn‘t happy either.
Rand Paul wants to fundamentally change this country for the worse, but at least he‘s pretty clearly defined about it all, isn‘t he? President Obama rolled over today, and he was steam-rolled by the election. Now there is an undercurrent of liberal disgust across the country with how this White House is handling the whole thing.
Take a listen to what America had to say on my radio show today. Here it is.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
JAVIER, DENVER, COLORADO: What I wanted to see was President Obama come up to the podium with a mouth guard on and some boxing gloves and a trainer in the corner, and say, Republicans, I‘m ready to bring it to you, the ideological fight, the political fight, the social fight. But he does not have that in him.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Obama, OK, he made his little peace speech today. But tomorrow he‘s—like he said, “I‘m going to put the boots on.” He better put the boots on, and he better know how to march with those boots.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: There were dozens of calls like that today. That‘s on, of course, progressive talk radio.
Now, that wasn‘t the professional left. Those were hard-working Americans who were counting on change, who voted for this president.
Now, liberals have been on the run in this country for decades, and they‘re just asking the question: Why is it that this president has a propensity to cooperate with the crazy? I mean, these people want to destroy the New Deal. They want to take down the Obama administration any way they can.
Rand Paul is beholden to no one. Neither is Mitch McConnell. These guys want to eliminate everything President Obama and the Democrats have stood for since day one.
And the president, I think, needs to stop trying to reach out to these nuts and draw a line in the sand. Just because they got the House doesn‘t mean they have the White House or the Senate.
There‘s an ideological war that is raging in this country no matter what rally you go to. And the olive branch hasn‘t worked in the past and has given us no reason to believe that the Republican olive branches are going to be coming down Pennsylvania Avenue.
Mitch McConnell is in a war, ,and he knows it, and this is how he talks about it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL ®, MINORITY LEADER: We‘ll work with the administration when they agree with the people and confront them when they don‘t. Choosing—I think what our friends on the other side learned is that choosing the president over your constituents is not a good strategy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Really? Well, let‘s go back to the public option. What did the public want on that?
What did the public want on Wall Street reform? What does the public want on outsourcing? What does the public want on job creation and loans to small businesses? I mean, you can go right down the list.
President Obama, you and your advisers need to fight these guys tooth and nail for the people who put you in office.
But I think his base is wondering tonight if he has the fight in him at all. I‘m doing the president a favor tonight by not showing all of his campaign fire-up speeches and that press conference today.
The liberals need a fighter first and then a uniter. Make your stand. I wanted to hear today the White House say we‘re not going to repeal health care, we‘re not going down that road. And by the way, the tax cuts, they‘re going to—they‘re going—taxes are going to go up on the top two percent because we have a financial problem in this country, and the top two percent have got to pay their fair share.
Let me tell you something, folks. If the Democrats are bent to compromise with the unwavering, that will be a death knell for the entire Democratic Party.
I want a 50-state strategy. I want some lines drawn in the sand. I know who they are on the other side, and I know what their mission is. And I thought the president came out today and he looked a little too sullen.
The president, to me, looked like he didn‘t have a whole lot of fight, a whole lot of passion, a whole lot of desire. And that bothers me a lot.
Am I a supporter? You better believe it. I‘d vote for him in a heartbeat. But I think I speak for millions of Americans tonight who are asking the question: Is this the way it‘s going to be or are we going to stand up and fight?
Hell, no, we‘re not going to repeal health care, Mr. Boehner. And, oh, by the way, Mr. Boehner, can you answer this question? Because we could go back to four years ago when Nancy Pelosi took impeachment off of the table.
Mr. Boehner, can I ask you tonight, are you going it take impeachment off the table, or are we going to go down the road of division, more cable divide that everybody‘s complaining about? Heck, this is the truth channel when it comes to defending the Obama administration and the progressive movement in this country.
I haven‘t done anything on this program that I‘m ashamed of. And I am not ashamed at all to step out in front the camera tonight and say, Mr. Obama, Mr. President, we supported you. I speak for a lot of liberals in the base. You need to get tougher on these people. They want to destroy you.
It‘s one election, and now we turn to 2012. It ain‘t party time.
It‘s time to get it done. It‘s time to draw a line in the sand.
What will we compromise on and what won‘t we compromise on? Because if you don‘t have your base in 2012, you are Jimmy Carter. Oh, that hurts.
Get your cell phones out. I want to know what you think.
Tonight‘s text survey question is: Do you think President Obama should keep trying to compromise with the Republicans? Text “A” for yes, text “B” for no to 622639. I‘ll bring you the results later on in the show.
Joining me now is Reverend Al Sharpton, president of the National Action Network.
Reverend, good to have you with us tonight.
AL SHARPTON, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: Good to be here, Ed.
SCHULTZ: You know the president, you talk to the president. What‘s he thinking at this hour?
SHARPTON: I haven‘t talked to him since last night, and I‘m sure that those close to him have.
I think the president is doing what he‘s always done, trying to not be the divider in the country. But I happen to think that, as you said, there are those of us that are going to let the other side know that he is going to be the statesman, but some of us are not going to let them turn back the clock.
I just think that that fight doesn‘t necessarily have to come from him. I think that fight has to come from us, so as he stands there and is presidential, we make it clear health care and the tax cuts to the wealthy and all of these things, those are not just President Obama‘s opinions, that‘s the will of the American people.
They won the House last night. They did not win the Senate.
You‘re sitting there in Nevada. We‘ve got to protect the wins that we had made in ‘08, what we held on to last night, and go forward. And I don‘t think that the protecting of the back of the American people and the president is his job alone.
I think that people like you and I have to play our role and let the president play his role. If they want to act obstinate, he should expose them by acting in the way he does. But they need to know that some of us are going to fight for what we believe is right for the American people.
SCHULTZ: Reverend, how do you compromise with people who have a stated mission to bring you down?
SHARPTON: Well, I think that now that they have the House, and we see that they have some power, they‘re going to chair some committees. All of this kind of protagonist kind of attitude they have takes a different flavor, because now they‘re not the outsiders, they‘re the insiders. What are you going to do?
And I think by him not standing up there being the one that looks like the obstructionist and the fighter, he‘s going to expose them, and it‘s also going to incite our base to go ahead and move forward and do what we need do.
SCHULTZ: And, Reverend, do you think that the Republicans should make sure the American people know that impeachment is off the table?
SHARPTON: Tonight. They need to say that tonight.
They need to say that they won the House, they want to move forward, and they want to heal the American people. Impeachment‘s off the table. We‘re not dealing with politics, we‘re dealing with policies that we believe in.
If they don‘t, then we know that they‘re just continuing a partisan divide. They need to be exposed for what this is and what this is not.
SCHULTZ: OK. So we‘re on the heels of a record number of filibusters in the Senate. We have the Republican leader saying that their number one political goal is to take down the president. We have Mr. Boehner, who was saying that we‘re going to get rid of this health care bill, this monstrosity that‘s out there on the backs of the American people, and this is no time for compromise. And the president today, in my opinion, comes out almost looking apologetic.
How is that supposed to fire me up? How is that supposed to fire up the American people who supported him? He looked defeated today.
SHARPTON: Well, see, I think that what is firing you up—and I‘m glad you are, and I am and others—they need to see that we‘re talking about taking people with pre-existing conditions and taking back the insurance from them when they talk about repealing health care. They‘re talking about giving the tax cuts again, going back to this trickle-down economic theory from Reagan that we never got to trickle, we just got the down.
What they need to understand is what they may consider the president being too sullen, as you said, is really the president maybe being a statesman, but there are a lot of us that are not going to allow them to do what they intend to do. They may have turned back the clock last night on ‘08, but they‘re not going to turn back time.
And Americans need to organize and fiercely stand up. I don‘t think the one that needs to make that call is the president. I think the people need to make that call.
They want the president to look like he‘s the one that‘s trying to pick the fight. They‘re picking the fight with the American people. He‘s the president. I think the fighters need to fight back.
SCHULTZ: Yes. I respect what you say, Reverend Sharpton, but I need to see more out of the president. I want some more fire.
SHARPTON: That‘s why you called me for intervention. I tried to be your minister, but I know that tonight‘s going to be a hard intervention with you, Ed.
SCHULTZ: All right. Reverend, good to have you with us tonight.
Thanks so much.
SCHULTZ: That‘s a guy I always want on my side.
Coming up, Harry Reid pulled off a stunning win here in Sin City last night. He knocked Sharron Angle down for the count. Jon Ralston called it. Heidi Harris is here.
Oh, we‘ve got crows flying in the studio, Heidi. All right.
And Christine O‘Donnell‘s concession speech, I‘ll tell you what, this was one for the archives. She didn‘t seem to know that—somebody should have told her that she lost the race last right in. We‘re throwing her into “The Zone.”
Plus, John Boehner cries off his bronzer? And Bachmann‘s in a trance.
And Bush almost cans “Shooter.” How about that? It‘s in the book.
You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV), MAJORITY LEADER: You see, I‘ve been in some pretty tough fights in my day. They‘ve been in the street, been in a boxing ring, and they‘ve been in the United States Senate. But I have to admit, this has been one of the toughest.
But it‘s nothing compared to the fights families are facing all over Nevada right now. This race has been called, but the fight is far from over. The bell that just rang isn‘t the end of the fight, it‘s the start of the next round.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Harry Reid was the knight in shining armor for the Democrats last night, no doubt about it. He landed a stunning knockout punch to Sharron Angle and all those corporate dollars, and helped save the Democratic majority in the Senate.
I‘ll tell you, the guy ran a flawless campaign down the stretch, had a massive ground game. Support from all over the country poured into Las Vegas to work the doors. And basically, the base really worked their fannies off for Harry Reid. No doubt about it.
Just when every one of the political world predicted that Reid would lose except this guy, Jon Ralston, The Las Vegas Sun‘s chief political columnist and the host of “Face to Face.” Also with us tonight is Sharron Angle supporter and Vegas radio talk show host Heidi Harris, who thought that Sharron Angle was going to win.
OK. A spirited battle, beyond, one for the archives.
Jon, why did you think harry was going to pull this off? And I guess as I look at it, the margin of victory was much wider than anticipated. What do you think?
JON RALSTON, POLITICAL COLUMNIST, “THE LAS VEGAS SUN”: Well, certainty the margin of victory was wider than even I had predicted, and I think I was the only one in the country who publicly predicted he was going to win, because all of the polls showed Sharron Angle stretching her lead from being close to a one-or-two-point race to a four-or-five-point race.
But all the public polling was terrible. I saw some internal polling from some people that indicated to me that Reid was going to win.
The turnout operation that he had was phenomenal, and it showed in the early voting. I think some Republicans fooled themselves after early voting thinking that they had some kind of an advantage. It just wasn‘t there. And then you take into account that I think his campaign was very, very successful in scaring people not to vote for Sharron Angle.
Now, frankly, Ed, I thought a lot of those people would have trouble voting for Harry Reid and that they would go to “None of the Above” or a minor party candidate. That‘s not what happened.
None of the Above only got two percent. Harry Reid got half of the vote. Nobody would have predicted that.
Here‘s Harry Reid today. Maybe this is just a chorus that they‘re singing on the Democratic side right now. The president comes out today talking about compromise. Here‘s Harry at his press conference this morning in Las Vegas.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REID: I think the main message that we should have received last night, I know that I did, is that the people in Nevada, the American people, wants us to work together. I‘m hopeful and confident that when the dust settles, the Republicans will no longer want to stop everything and we‘ll work together.
I have always felt that my job is to build consensus, to work out legislation. It‘s not a bad word to suggest that legislation‘s the art of compromise.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Heidi, is that the same old Harry Reid or is this a new Harry Reid?
HEIDI HARRIS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Of courses it‘s a new Harry Reid.
Are you kidding?
This is a guy who was blaming everything on the Republicans. Even this morning he did an interview on one of the networks, and he talked about how, well, I‘m not going to listen to the Republicans. He was already talking about it.
He says he‘s the guy of compromise, but he‘s really not. He‘s back to
he‘s going to be conciliatory only because he‘s not going to have total control.
You know, was I shocked that he won? No. I was hoping that Sharron would win, but it‘s tough to kill a cockroach.
And Jon Ralston is right about the fact that he got his people out there. The casinos were busting the employees, the culinary unions, who are largely Democrat, out to the polling places. And I‘m not going to complain about that. The Republicans should have made that kind of effort, too.
Were there problems with the voting machines? That remains to be seen. Where are the ballots that were supposed to be sent out to the military? They haven‘t gotten them. They haven‘t returned them.
So there are a lot of questions that need to be answered. I‘m not going to tell you that that would have made the difference between Harry winning and Sharron winning, but there are a lot of questions that need to be answered before the next election, because it‘s unacceptable that the military men and women don‘t get their ballots in time.
These things should not happen. Our secretary of state should never have let it happen. So a lot of people are upset about that.
SCHULTZ: All right. Four hundred thousand voters definitely made a big difference in this.
But, Heidi, this is the prediction that you made on the program on Monday night. Here it is.
HARRIS: Oh, no. Here it comes.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Heidi, am I hearing you say on THE ED SHOW that you think you‘re going to get Sharron Angle elected here in Nevada? Is that what I‘m hearing right here?
HARRIS: You know what? I hope she does get elected.
You know what? The fat lady ain‘t singing yet, but she‘s warming up, Ed. Wednesday morning we‘re all going to be partying here because Harry is going down. We‘re going to take out the trash.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: Hey, listen, I was hopeful.
SCHULTZ: Yes, you were hopeful. And you‘re a good sport about it.
But just remember, Heidi, on this show, we record everything.
HARRIS: Yes, yes, yes. Well, let‘s talk—what about all the other gains made in Congress, huh? You guys don‘t want to talk about that, do you? Uh-huh.
RALSTON: Ed, can I jump in here for a second?
SCHULTZ: Go right ahead.
RALSTON: Ed, can I jump in here for a second, please?
I mean, I can‘t believe you‘re calling Heidi a good sport. She just went through all the nonsense that her side‘s been throwing out since the election, the military ballots.
The secretary of state handled that. He got a federal sanction.
There were just a few of them.
This busing of casino employees, they‘re tying to say, oh, that‘s why all the polls were wrong because they bused all the casino and culinary employees. That happens every election cycle, Ed. There was nothing different about this.
The bottom line is it‘s very difficult, because Heidi and others are in denial, is that Harry Reid ran a great campaign. He‘s a terrible candidate, but his campaign was phenomenal.
They turned out their voters. And the Republican wave, except for Joe Heck taking Dina Titus‘ seat stopped in Nevada.
It‘s difficult. It‘s painful for Heidi. She‘s going to need a break to get over her denial, but that is what happens.
HARRIS: Wait. How high is that new bridge that just got built? I want to know. I might be the first one to jump off of it.
Let‘s not forget Brian Sandoval, our new governor, is a Republican and wiped the floor with Rory Reid. So we—
RALSTON: Rory Reid should never have run.
HARRIS: You‘re right about that.
RALSTON: Rory Reid should never have run for office.
HARRIS: Absolutely right about that.
So it wasn‘t a total clean sweep, but, yes, of course I‘m disappointed. I wanted Harry out. He needs to be retired.
SCHULTZ: All right. Well, he‘s going back to the Senate, and the Democrats have the majority.
Heidi Harris, Jon Ralston, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.
HARRIS: Thanks, Ed.
RALSTON: Thanks, Ed.
SCHULTZ: Coming up, Christine O‘Donnell lost her race early. She lost it early on, but her “Psycho Talk” continued long into the night. She‘s back in “The Zone” next.
SCHULTZ: And in “Psycho Talk” tonight, well, she‘s back.
Christine O‘Donnell, you know, she packed a lot of crazy into her Senate campaign. And her speech last night sends her back into “The Zone” one more time.
O‘Donnell lost by 17 points, but she saw a no need to give a concession speech. In fact, it seems like she hardly noticed that she didn‘t even win.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTINE O‘DONNELL ®, FMR. DELAWARE SENATE CANDIDATE: Be encouraged. We have won. The Delaware political system will never be the same. I just got off of the phone with my opponent and I asked him if he would talk to you and if he would take up my promise to end this lame-duck session, fight to stop the death tax from being reinstated. We can only hope and pray that he chooses to go against his party leadership. We‘re not going to stop fighting either. Because there‘s a lot of work to be done. We‘ve got a lot of food. We‘ve got the room all night. So, God bless you. So, let‘s party.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: So, O‘Donnell lost badly I might add and she still thinks that she can tell Chris Coons what to do when he gets in the Senate. Nothing arrogant about that, huh? Or does she belong on FOX? In fact, it wouldn‘t surprise me a bit if she signed a new deal with FOX just any day now. Christine O‘Donnell thinking that she can make demands of a guy who beat her by double digits in an election is “Psycho Talk.”
Coming up, John Boehner and Eric Cantor, well, they‘re on a rampage against the president. The Democrats have got dig a trench and return all kinds of fire over the next couple of years if they want to maintain the majority. Congressman Jim Moran gives us the battle plan next in the “Battleground” story.
And the psycho sister, Michele Bachmann, well, she brought the crazy to a new level on our network last night talking to Chris Matthews. I was on the floor. I couldn‘t believe it. And you won‘t believe it if you missed it. You‘ve got to see it, coming up.
And, George W. Bush, son of a gun, he almost pulled the trigger on shooter. You‘re watching THE ED SHOW on MSNBC. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW. The “Battleground” story tonight is just that. A Battle Royale is coming to Washington. The Democrats better be ready and they better get up and fight back. During his victory lap today, John Boehner said that his first priority is going after the Obama agenda.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JOHN BOEHNER ®, OHIO: The American people are concerned about the government takeover of health care. I think it‘s important for us to lay the ground work before we begin to repeal this monstrosity and replace them with common sense reforms that will bring down the cost of government insurance in America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Government takeover, here we go. With the same old bullet points in the rhetoric. Has anybody out there told you, folks, that you can‘t go see the doctor that you‘ve been seeing? Have you gotten anything in the mail that tells you that you have to do this or that with your health care? They just don‘t stop. I give them credit. Boehner knows that he can‘t repeal the health care law. But that‘s what he‘s going waste time and taxpayer dollars on, not on jobs and the economy, like he promised during the campaign. This is proof positive the Republicans sold the American people a bill of goods during the midterm campaign and they don‘t give a damn about you.
They don‘t care about the middle class. They don‘t care about jobs.
All they want to do is take down President Obama and get back to power. Concentrate the wealth. That‘s what they‘re about. Boehner‘s promise of a new way, well, they‘re just as lame as his bar flat tears last night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOEHNER: I spent my whole life chasing the American dream. I put my
myself through school. Working every rotten job there was. And every night shift I could find. And I poured my heart and soul into running a small business. And when I saw how I touch Washington, I became the core values of this great nation, I put my name forward and ran for office.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Earlier in this program I was asking Mr. Boehner about taking impeachment off the table and now I‘d like on ask Mr. Boehner another question tonight. Mr. Boehner, do you think that there are any American families out there that are crying when they are told after they get sick that the insurance company is going to drop them? You see, we passed a law in this country. You were not a part of it, that said that insurance companies can‘t do that. And you want to repeal that. So do you think that there are any tears with the middle class, Mr. Boehner, or is it all about you all the time?
The American people, they just don‘t buy it. I don‘t believe, when a career politician whines that Washington is out of touch. There is, you know, this is what turns people off. To think that we‘re going to be so enthralled with his story. Do you think there is any Americans out there, Mr. Boehner that are working two and three jobs, so they don‘t get foreclosed on, huh? Do you ever think about that when you‘re on the golf course, when you‘re smoking a cigar and you‘re perfectly tanned and life is good for you out there? Congratulations on making it, Mr. Boehner. Now let‘s see if you can help other Americans make it. Because that‘s what elected officials are supposed to do.
Mr. Boehner, the unemployment benefits, question number three tonight, I guess, the unemployment benefits are going to be running out for millions of Americans before Christmas. Do you think they‘ll be crying at all, Mr. Boehner? Do you think they‘ll have a gut-wrenching holiday season and are you going to be there to help them out in this time of economic strife, or are you going to tell your story again and make sure that we relate to that? One thing about the capitalistic system and one thing about this great country is that it‘s all about freedom but not everybody is going to make it. And sometimes along the way, some people are going to need some help. Mr. Boehner, you need to prove to the American people that you‘re not selfish. That‘s your challenge.
Virginia Congressman Jim Moran joins me tonight. What is going to be the response from the liberal left in this country to Mr. Boehner? Congressman, good to have you with us tonight.
REP. JIM MORAN (D), VIRGINIA: Thank you, Ed. Good to you.
SCHULTZ: Your take on the months ahead, sir?
MORAN: Well, I don‘t have a problem with John being long on the emotions, it‘s just that he‘s short on empathy. You know they have made a science of saying no. And now they‘re going to have to do something.
They‘re going to have to tell us what they stand for. Eleven times over
the last four years, they voted to preserve tax breaks so that corporations
could ship jobs overseas. Are they going to continue do that? They have -
they got rid of our pay-go effort to balance the budget. Keep cutting taxes.
We have the lowest tax rate right now since the 1920s at about 15 percent. We‘re willing to keep taxes low if they can show us where they‘re spending money that is not needed by the American people. The problem, Ed, is that the Republicans have run on the thesis that government can‘t work, that it can‘t help people, and now that they‘re elected, I‘m afraid they‘re going to go about proving that and that‘s not in the country‘s best interest. They‘re going to find, they‘re going to have a very short time frame to show that they have an alternative approach that is more in the public interest.
SCHULTZ: He say.
MORAN: I haven‘t seen it. I don‘t know where it is. I don‘t know how they‘re going to come up with it.
SCHULTZ: He says that it‘s no time to compromise on their principles. Isn‘t that a line in the sand? And haven‘t they got a record to run on that, hey, record filibusters‘ over in the Senate. I mean, legislatively, you guys passed what, over 240 bills in the House. You lose a bunch of seats. So how does this all work out? Do you think the American people want this obstruction? Do you think they want this hard-liner approach or do they want you to get along? What do you think?
MORAN: Well, so many of the American people see what happens through the prism of FOX News. But despite FOX News and the thousands of conservative radio stations, I don‘t see how they‘re going to be able to spin this if they don‘t come up with some positive way to generate jobs. The reality is that President Obama has created more jobs in the last year than President Bush did in the last eight years. And as you know, we were losing jobs when—when the republican his control of all three branches of government.
Now they‘re in power. And now the American people are going to ask something from them, other than just saying no. I want to hear what it is that they‘re going to do. How are they going to create jobs in the Midwest and in the south? That‘s where democratic seats were lost because that‘s not where the jobs are. And, you know, just a point, Ed, since World War II, we invested about 30 percent more—every single decade in education, for example. And our cost—and our standard of living for all Americans almost doubled every decade until 1980. In 1980 we started starving the beast in Ronald Reagan‘s words.
MORAN: And as a result, the middle class lost money. Lost income. Lost jobs. And in fact instead of being the best in education all over the world, we‘re now number 12 and we‘re sinking fast. We‘re 16th in college graduates. Are they going to be able to improve education by cutting spending? Many of them even want to eliminate the Department of Education.
SCHULTZ: The answer to that is absolutely no, they‘re not.
MORAN: They‘re not.
SCHULTZ: They are going to try to govern with a dark board mentality. Oh, let‘s cut that too and not worry about the ramifications of the whole thing. Congressman Moran, great to have you with us tonight. I appreciate your time. Obviously we‘ve got an interesting two years coming up, we appreciate you coming on the program.
Now let‘s get some rapid fire response from our panel on these stories tonight where the president I think needs to stop pandering to the right and show some guts. I was not impressed with the press conference today. Progressives need a leader who wants to fight. The olive branches didn‘t work before. What makes you think they‘re going on work now?
And Citizens United, Karl Rove and corporate cash took down a lot of Dems last night in one of the best progressives you‘ll fine in Russ Feingold out of Wisconsin. The onslaught is coming and nothing is going to change when it comes to the money. So what are Democrats do to fight it?
Joining me now is XM Satellite radio talk show host Joe Madison and also Bob Shrum, democratic strategist and professor at New York University. Gentlemen, let‘s put it into perspective, first of all, the president‘s reaction today. Joe, I need to see some fight out of the president. Or what am I missing here? What do you think today?
JOE MADISON, XM SATELLITE RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: You‘re not missing anything. I heard some voices from your show this afternoon and they might as well had been the same voices that were on my show. Look, let me put it like this. One of the things in 1936, Roosevelt understood was that the folks hated him. And he said, let them hate me. I‘ll embrace that hate. Because the people who hate me are the people who want to cut Social Security. They‘re the people who want to cut education. And I will embrace that hate and fight them and he—and what happened was that the common man embraced Roosevelt. And this is what President Obama has to do. I‘ll say one thing, I respectfully disagree with my brother, Al Sharpton.
The president has the bully pulpit, and he must use that today.
MADISON: All right, be conciliatory because it‘s—you know we‘re both old football players. You get a shellacking, you come out and said we lost but.
SCHULTZ: But you don‘t give up the fight.
MADISON: Oh, no. Because the next.
SCHULTZ: I felt today like that. I wasn‘t getting that passion from the campaign trail.
SCHULTZ: I wasn‘t getting that fire and that vigor. Bob Shrum, how did the White House play it today, what do you think?
BOB SHRUM, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, I have a little different interpretation than you do, Ed. I think the president has to go out there and say, he wants to cooperate. I think he has to understand that the Republicans are not going to cooperate and he needs a plan B.
SHRUM: And they‘re not going to cooperate because the economics of no, saying no to anything that‘s going to create jobs, they see as their route to the presidency because they think if the unemployment is not down in 2012, Barack Obama is going to get blamed.
SCHULTZ: There is no doubt about it.
MADISON: Can I add one other thing? President Obama has to understand, they do not like him.
SCHULTZ: At all. At all.
MADISON: At all.
SCHULTZ: No question about that, they‘ve got to get impeachment off of the table. They got some of the crazies out in the Congress.
MADISON: The birther. They have to get birther on the table.
SCHULTZ: Michele Bachmann wants to be in the leadership position now. She‘s made that very clear. And she‘s talking about investigations and subpoenas. I don‘t think the American people want that, but they want power. Bob Shrum, I have to ask you, the onslaught of money. Now that the Republicans have got the House, there is not going to be any change in campaign finance reform. This sets the table for 2012. Can the Democrats keep up with the money machine?
SHRUM: Yes, but what has to happen is the president is going to have to be engaged. The whole party‘s going to have to be engaged. Really going to have to use net roots. Raise that money out there and there is going to come a moment and I don‘t know whether it‘s going to be in the next three months, six months. At some point in the next year where there‘s a confrontation that takes place, where cooperation breaks down. There are some Republicans crazy enough to talk about shutting down the government again.
When that happens, the president has to go out there. He doesn‘t have to say they hate me. I welcome the hate. But he has to say in a way they don‘t like you, they don‘t care about you and I‘m going to stand up for you. The predicate to that is that he reaches out and says, let‘s work together. But the compromise is the only thing that matters. The content of the compromise matters and the Republicans are not going to give him a helping hand.
MADISON: And we cannot allow our voices to be muted. That‘s what‘s -
you know, that‘s why facts aren‘t getting out because people on our side are having their voices muted.
SCHULTZ: But, gentlemen, the first voice I want to hear is President Obama saying, we‘re not repealing health care.
SHRUM: Well, he did say that today, Ed. Be fair to him.
SCHULTZ: Well, he didn‘t say it strong enough. I mean, he‘s got to put his foot down and then I think he also has to bring the republican leadership into the oval office and say, all right, what‘s this about impeachment? Let‘s knock this stuff off. I need to know where you‘re going. Bob, what about that?
SHRUM: Well, first of all, they‘re not going to impeach him. Secondly, if they try, they‘ll go down in flames in 2012. Third, he is going to bring him into the oval office. And he‘s going to say, here‘s what I want to do on taxes. You know one of the things they should do on taxes, Ed? Instead of Democrats just talking about the off-shoring of American jobs, they ought to actually propose some legislation that‘s going to deal with that problem.
SHRUM: Because I think part of what happened yesterday was that we seemed out of touch with the middle class.
SCHULTZ: We‘ll talk more about outsourcing tomorrow because that‘s something the Republicans have never addressed. Joe Madison, Bob Shrum, great to have you with us.
SHRUM: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: Coming up. I think Republicans are plotting to impeach the president and we‘ve had congressional members on this program agree with me. Congressman Anthony Weiner will tell us what he thinks they‘ve got up their sleeve and what it‘s like working with radicals. Next on THE ED SHOW. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And it‘s not too late to let us know what you think. Tonight‘s text survey question is, do you think President Obama should keep trying to compromise with Republicans? Text A for yes, text B for no, to 622639. Results coming up. Stay with us.
SCHULTZ: And in my “Playbook” tonight. Well, with Republicans in charge of the House, folks, get ready for a slew of investigations. I think they‘re going to try to impeach the president. Notice how they‘re not taking it of the table.
Joining me now is Congressman Anthony Weiner of New York. Congressman Darrell Issa is out there talking about investigations and subpoenas. How does that reach your desk? What do you think?
REP. ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK: Well, I don‘t mind oversight. I think we didn‘t do enough oversight when the Republicans were in charge during the Bush years and I think oversight is fine. The problem is, it seems like it‘s a substitute for an agenda and what they want to do when they grow up. You know, at a certain point, they have to say what laws they want to pass. They can‘t say who they are going to investigate and what they‘re against. They‘re going to need an agenda and frankly they ran a campaign that was pretty devoid of one. I think they can investigate all they want. It‘s not going to paper over the fact that they still need to stand up and say what they believe and how it will solve our nation‘s problems.
SCHULTZ: And Congressman, what‘s the definition of compromise these days?
WEINER: Well, I have no idea. You know, traditionally, compromise is two people have a different position on solving a problem and you reaped in the middle somewhere. The campaign that was just run was completely devoid of any affirmative agenda going forward. I know what they‘re against. Believe me, I know what they‘re against, they‘re against health care, they‘re against financial reform, they‘re against Social Security and Medicare. I get that, but in order to compromise and a lot of people saying to me, are you going to compromise with the Republicans now? I need to know what they believe and what they want to do going forward for the next two years. You know, you can‘t vote—you can‘t just have votes on overturning the health care bill week and go home. Sooner or later, they have to say what they‘re for.
SCHULTZ: What‘s your advice for the president in dealing with people that are trying to take him down in a liberal base that is somewhat frustrated that there‘s not enough fight coming out of the White House?
WEINER: Well, the first thing I would say is in dealing with the Republicans, you know, let them show some cards here, you know.
WEINER: They devote, they come very good, you know, LBJ once said that it takes a great man to build a barn but any jackass can take one down. I think, you know, for year, the last two years, we‘ve been trying to build up this economy and the Republicans have been very successful politically just kicking it down. That‘s going to change. And one it‘s going to change is we‘ve got to say the president should say to them, let‘s see what you‘re offering.
SCHULTZ: Congressman, good to have you with us tonight. Thanks a lot.
WEINER: You bet.
SCHULTZ: Anthony Weiner here from New York on THE ED SHOW.
Coming up. Mama Grizzlies‘ cubs, well, they didn‘t so well at the polls last night. A lot of the candidates that Palin supported were big losers. “Huffington Post” founder and editor, Roy Sekoff up next to comment on all of the losers from the Mama Grizzly division. That‘s next.
SCHULTZ: And finally tonight, with the Mama Grizzlies, are they going into hibernation with the Palin plague? Sarah Palin picked a few winners last night, but I tell you what, she picked some losers. Christine O‘Donnell, Sharron Angle, John Raese, Tom Tancredo, Ken Buck. The list is on and on.
Roy Sekoff, the founding editor of “The Huffington Post.” Is there such a thing called the Palin plague out there now, Roy? Well, she‘s banging. What do you think?
ROY SEKOFF, EDITOR, “THE HUFFINGTON POST”: Well, look, Ed, you know, she has an unfavorable rating of 56 percent. So, getting a political endorsement from her is like getting the guy with the worst taste in women that you know saying, he wants to set you up on a blind date, you know, you run the other way. But that said, I have to be honest, if we give an honest assessment, I don‘t think we can peg these on Palin. I mean, Sharron Angle lost because of Sharron Angle. She ran a racist campaign and the Latino vote was overwhelmingly democrat.
I mean, Joe Miller, you know, if he hadn‘t run, Murkowski would have won anyway. And she‘s going to, you know, caucus with the Republicans. So, I don‘t think we can really stick this with, you know, Palin on this. I think, as much found is would be to repudiate her influence, I think we have to be honest and say that the Palin factor was really no factor at all.
SCHULTZ: Well, the republican establishment is blaming her for not getting the Senate majority because all of the people that she backed lost including Ken Buck out of Colorado. So, is this going to hurt her for 2012?
SEKOFF: Well, actually, she didn‘t endorse Buck at the end, you know. And you know, she only endorsed the guy from West Virginia very late. I think that definitely the establishment doesn‘t want her there. So they‘re going to try to pin everything other they can. But I think the only one they can is Christine O‘Donnell because I think, you know, Castle would have beaten Coons. I think, that‘s the only one you can pin on her but one wouldn‘t have made the full difference.
SCHULTZ: What do you make of Joe Miller and Murkowski, they‘re still in it. Scott McAdams conceded today. Does Miller have a shot? And that doesn‘t look good for Palin, that‘s who she supported.
SEKOFF: Yes, you know, absolutely, I don‘t think it makes her look good but I don‘t think she‘s the one who cost it because without it, Murkowski would have, you know, won anyway. I think, you know, when we‘re looking for write-in vote said, the spelling if it‘s correct, all I think it‘s going to be a long haul. Maybe until Veteran‘s Day until we know that one.
SCHULTZ: Roy, good to have you with us tonight. That‘s THE ED SHOW. I‘m Ed Schultz. Chris Matthews with “HARDBALL” starts right now on the place for politics. We‘ll see you tomorrow night form Minneapolis. Have a great one.
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