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'The Melissa Harris-Perry Show' for Sunday, December 30th, 2012

Read the transcript to the Sunday show

December 30, 2012

Guests: Molly Knefel, Elon James White, Maysoon Zayid, Jamie Kilstein, Dorie Clark, Sandra Fluke

MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY, MSNBC ANCHOR: This morning, my question and it`s a
real question. Can Nerdland pull off a joke show?

Plus the bloopers that my staff is making me run.

And pop quiz, we are going to play name that twin.

But first, what us little oh, nerds, find funny about 2012?


Nerdland, it has been quite a year. What better way to have spent our
first year together here o MHP show than surviving the ups and downs of
election 2012.

As I look back, I hope we have been able to give you the kind of
thoughtful, sober minded take on presidential elections that our sacred
democratic process deserves. After all, the work of choosing our nation`s
leader is serious business. Because let me tell you, keeping a straight
face throughout the year of absolute absurdity in this political condition
has not been easy.

I mean, come on. Rick Santorum was a serious contender for the nomination.
That happened. And Newt Gingrich won the South Carolina primary. For us
political geeks here, the fact that Newt Gingrich was the Jesse Jackson of
2012 is complete hilarity.

And you just have to laugh to keep from crying at the biggest punch line of
all. After nearly two years of campaigning, a record $2 billion in
election spending, the angst, anxiety, and divisiveness, where did he end
up? Right back where we started, with President Barack Obama in the White
House of slight Democratic majority in the senate and in a Republican lead
House of Representatives.

We can`t hold it in any longer which is why our very last show of the year
is also something of an experiment, our first ever annual look back in

When we begin the year, many of us fearing the apocalyptic declined which
is on the Mayan calendar, pop this, in fact, might be out last year. Why
else would the Republicans risk leaving the country? To be run by any of
this cast of characters. Clearly, they believe that we are all going to be
blown to oblivion and that there will be no country left to run at all.
Why not go out laughing.

Now, the cookiest of this crew have already bowed out before 2012 even
really got going. We feared the year might leave us without the gems of
2011, like this one from our favorite pizza man.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: You agreed with President Obama on Libya or

a different one. I got go back and see. All this stuff twirling around in
my head.


HARRIS-PERRY: Or maybe this one from Texas governor Rick Perry who bailed
on his presidential hopes by mid January.


GOV. RICK PERRY (R), TEXAS: I will tell you, its three agencies of
government when I get there that are gone. Commerce, education and the,
what`s the third one there? Let`s see.


HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. Now, it`s one thing to be unable to remember the
facts. It is something else to make them up. Before disappointing show in
January`s Iowa caucus foresters have leave the race. Minnesota
representative Michele Bachmann treated us all for her very own version of
American history.


that wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in
the United States. Men like John Quincy Adams who would not rest until
slavery was extinguished in the country.


HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. The GOP was running candidates that just made stuff
up. Congresswoman, the founders were slave owners and John Quincy Adams,
not a founder.

Yes, it seemingly reached a mass of election ridiculousness in 2011. But
it turns out that the fun was just beginning. Because no sooner had we
cracked open the new 2012 calendar than Rick Santorum dropped this race
bait into the political waters on January 1st.


people`s lives better by giving them somebody else`s money.


HARRIS-PERRY: Oh, blah -- right? I mean, hearing it once was hilarious
enough. But even better was the attempt to convince us that we didn`t hear
what we thought we heard.


SANTORUM: I`m pretty confident, I didn`t say black. When I think I
started to say a word and sort of blah --


HARRIS-PERRY: All over the place, didn`t you? Unfortunately, for Rick
Santorum, the election mounted to a failed attempt to reset the Google
search result of his last name. But sorry Rick, the in savages (INAUDIBLE)
redefinition campaign is still number one.

But, Santorum is not alone among candidates burdened with unfortunate
Google legacy. Because Newt Gingrich assured his name will be forever
linked in Google`s predictive search with the phrase moon colony when he
made this campaign pledge.


term, we will have the first permanent base on the moon and it will be


HARRIS-PERRY: I`m not sure which was more unbelievable, the new American
territory that Jon Stewart dubbed moon-landia or the idea of a two-term
Gingrich presidency. So, it is really saying something, when the moon
colony guy looked like the reasonable one next to the candidate who seemed
to exist purely for entertainment value.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Ron Paul.


in the campaign for liberty --


HARRIS-PERRY: That`s enough from you, Ron Paul. You are done. As they
all were because in the end, there could only be one. And it`s one that
Republicans should file away under the category of things that seemed like
a good idea at the time. Because for an American with a limping economy
and sluggish job market, with the middle class whose watched its wealth
wade a way to nothing the Republican Party picked as its nominee, the guy
who regularly said things like this.


10,000 bucks -- $10,000 bet.


HARRIS-PERRY: And this --


M. ROMNEY: I like being able to fire people who provide services to me.


HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. No one could have guessed at the beginning of 2012 all
the absurd moments of the Republican nominating contest, Mitt Romney`s
victory would be the most absurd of them all. Or by the end of the year,
he would be the one having the last laugh.

Jokes on us, America, because as it turns out, Mitt Romney didn`t really
want to be a president anyway. In a recent interview with "the Boston
Globe," Romney`s son, Tag, said of his father that quote "he wanted to be
president less than anyone I have met in my life. He has no desire to
run." What?

Stay right there. Up next, the old man in the seat. Now, that was funny.



CLINT EASTWOOD, ACTOR: I wondered about, you know, when the what? What do
you want me to tell Romney? I can`t tell him to do that. He can`t do that
to himself.



HARRIS-PERRY: Sometimes the stuff just writes itself. That was Clint
Eastwood talking to a chair at the Republican National Convention. It was
a moment that had us cringing but cracking somehow at the same time. And
while it may have been a memorable moment, it had a lot of competition from
other moments of sheer madness in the general election because between the
madness and the debates, the hits just kept coming.

To help me dissect them all, I have assembled a superpower panel of funny.
At the table today, April Roster of comedians, Jaime Kilstein who is co-
host of Citizen Radio, Maysoon Zayid who is the founder of the New York
Arab American comedy festival. Elon James White is a columnist, a blogger
and of course friend of Nerdland and host of this week`s "In Blackness" and
Molly Knefel, a writer and co-host of podcast radio dispatch.

It`s so nice to have you all here.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you for having us.

HARRIS-PERRY: So, we really did have a good time as a team going through
everything that happened at the end of 2011, during 2012.

Jamie, what was your favorite moment of 2012?

JAMIE KILSTEIN, CO-HOST, CITIZEN RADIO: My first favorite moment was you
after commercial saying and that was Clint Eastwood talking to a chair.


KILSTEIN: And then my second -- first of all, just so I don`t forget,
after that in-sync of chair around in the beginning, I have to sort of
stick up for Ron Paul really quickly. I`m not one of those guys. But I
really did like that Ron Paul was the only candidate that wanted to end the
wars and he talked about the war on drugs. And part of me - but then, he
was so crazy on other things.

HARRIS-PERRY: He wanted to end the war except the war on people who don`t
have insurance in the hospital.

KILSTEIN: Or people who don`t have -- so, because of all that stuff, I
kind of have this fantasy where like Ron Paul and Obama would do one of
those `80s movie like body switch where they like learn a lesson. Where
like, at the end of it, Obama will have, we have end the war on drugs and
like stop sending drowns and Ron Paul is like I don`t hate women. And they
all come together happily.

But, my favorite moment was Mitt Romney. And I think it was the 47 percent
speech because Republicans do this, like, like when George Bush had a word
faux pas, I didn`t really care. Like we laughed because we were like he
doesn`t know words. But when Mitt Romney did it, he was telling the truth.
And I think that was brilliant because Republicans are really good at like
turning horrible things - and if they have a bill to destroy the
environment it`s called --

HARRIS-PERRY: Save the earth.

KILSTEIN: Yes, like the meatloaf to the sky act or something like that.
But Romney was straight up like, you know, don`t say anything about poor
people, I hate poor people. And I love the 47 percent speech because it
just illuminated exactly what the Republicans stand for.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right. It was a clarifying moment. I got to say, one of my
favorite moments, Elon, was during the vice president debate. Because I
felt like Joe Biden was doing the same thing. He keeps clarifying process.
This is pure ridiculousness. We had to cut this down a little bit. Let`s
just watch VP Biden during the VP debate.


But what we also want to do in spite of their opposition.


RYAN: This idea came from the Clinton --

MARTHA RADDATZ, MODERATOR: The answer, please.

RYAN: Did they -- this is a plan that is bipartisan.

RADDATZ: So, no massive --

RYAN: It`s what we do. We do it for all constituents.

BIDEN: I love that.


HARRIS-PERRY: He was just so like that. It`s how we all were responding
to the whole thing. Like what?

that there weren`t commercials on that because otherwise, if he had time to
stop and go over to Paul Ryan and like he wants to blame the show


WHITE: He was just like going acting so hard and like, by the way, let`s
have the moment to acknowledge the magic amount of white privilege Joe
Biden had to be able to get away with that. And for the most part, he got
away with that. Imagine if the president was constantly laughing at his
opponent that would not have gone well. Not well at all.

HARRIS-PERRY: Not only white privilege. Think about if Joe Biden behaved
that way toward Sarah Palin, right? Not only would he have been attacked,
he would have been - it would have been in fact inappropriate to mock Sarah
Palin. It`s like he suddenly realized, that`s totally what he wanted to do
during the entire debate in 2008 and now he was finally liberated to do it.

KILSTEIN: You think that is why he went so crazy. He was holding it in --

HARRIS-PERRY: -- for four years.

MOLLY KNEFEL, STAND-UP COMIC: It was like he did a cost benefit analysis.
He was like if I mock Paul Ryan, is everybody going to be OK with that?

MAYSOON ZAYID, COMEDIAN: I had my favorite moment of the debates. I also
debate him when he screamed in his face, oh, so now you`re Jack Kennedy.
That was the moment where it use like oh, this is like when you are talking
to your dad and he turns around and says enough out of you. Joe Biden put
that boy in his place. It reminded me of Kathy Bates from "I dream tomato"
versions like you maybe younger but I have more insurance and you are
trying to take it away from me.

HARRIS-PERRY: That`s right. That was the part where she hits it car.

ZAYID: I mean, he just spanked the guy. It was fantastic. The Jack
Kennedy line was epic. It was my favorite line of the debate.

KILSTEIN: And I went into the debates really like cynical, more on like
Biden is just going to ponder. He is not going to say anything to Paul
Ryan. And then when he said that line, I just remember like standing a bit
and like oh! Like he said it!

HARRIS-PERRY: And I got to say, part of the reason this was happening,
right, was because we were so sad on the left after the first one. We just
have to take a look at President Obama during that first debate. It was --
it was a sad moment. The reason we were so excited about Biden, what was
going on there?

KNEFEL: I`m glad we had the sad drama. (INAUDIBLE), it sound tracked to


KNEFEL: I mean, I feel like Biden is like a fun dad but then was able in
the debate to get away with being angry dad, you know. He`s like fun,
laughing, I`m kind of condescending to this guy and then was able to do
with the Jack Kennedy line, like seriously, don`t mess around.

WHITE: That`s the thing. Joe Biden is your crazy uncle Joe, but he really
is your crazy Uncle Joe, like it`s not a joke at that point. Like, you go
to thanksgiving dinner and like, you have to mention something. But don`t
mention it then he`s like I`m getting married. Uncle Joe, go back a little
bit, I mean. Now I have to say --

HARRIS-PERRY: No. So I think it was funny that the president actively
tried to be funny in multiple points of the debate. So, when he woke up
for the foreign policy debate, he had a great moment where he makes the
bayonet joke. Let`s listen to the president being funny.


example. And that we have fewer ships than we did 1916. Well governor, we
also have fewer horses and bayonets.



WHITE: Let`s go, Obama. Did his staff finally find the adrenaline pump
from a pumping station and just stab him like that? But all of the sudden,
he woke the hell up. I didn`t know what happened and I`m just like
clapping saying please, just continue this, whatever is happening, please.

HARRIS-PERRY: It was good stuff, right?

ZAYID: I feel like the first time out, Cousin Obama was channeling his
inner Middle Eastern leader because he was like why is this man talking to


ZAYID: I think that`s what it was. And then the next time, he was like a
comic that forgot to do his jokes so he used every whitey comeback he
forgot the first time except for like I know you are, but what might.


KNEFEL: And you could hear the collective cheer of all the Democrats in
the entire country after that bayonet line. It was just everyone was like

ZAYID: It was the place, don`t call it a comeback.

WHITE: I want to know who wrote that line. Really. He must have been
doing the "W" in the back -


HARRIS-PERRY: Like the opposite of whomever the young staffer was on
Friday who was in the wings when the president decided to turn to people
and say I can hear you. I can hear you talking.

ZAYID: That was a bad moment.

KILSTEIN: I believe, if I heard the news correctly, the NRA has
disappeared the young staffer.


HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. Unless he was the same one who wrote the bayonet joke
and then maybe there`s forgiveness.

There was another great moment I thought the president had in the second
debate when he did the, get the transcript moment. So, let`s watch the
president doing that.


OBAMA: Get the transcript.


OBAMA: Can you say that a little louder, Candy?


HARRIS-PERRY: Right. He became as (INAUDIBLE). Say it louder, Candy.

KILSTEIN: Here is why it was amazing. It is because some news shows, that
aren`t this news show, refused to get the transcript. I mean, I know
people who were calling her out for being liberally biased for literally
just reading words that happened because you watch a lot of cable news
channel and they will bring on like the Democrat and they will bring on a
Republican. And the Democrat would be like, you know, two plus two equals
four. I`m sorry I made the Democrats the right one, the Republicans would
like two plus two equals I hate women or something. And then, the
newscaster would be like I guess we`ll never know. And it`s like no, you
do know.

And when it comes to global warming, it becomes all of the sudden, you
know, like you have computers and staff behind her. Just Google it and
tell me which one is right and who is lying. And that was a moment where
she said he is lying. And I think everyone watching was like oh, like this
is what journalists can do because they pieces of paper with fact --

HARRIS-PERRY: That could read the facts.


HARRIS-PERRY: Up next, the most incredible one liner from election night.


HARRIS-PERRY: Today, we are looking back on the political year that was.
This year`s election has us up to the very end. Who couldn`t forget the
moment on election night everyone was talking about the next day? I don`t
mean the historic re-election of President Obama. I mean Karl Rove`s
inability to process the fact that the historic re-election of President
Obama has really happened.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Do you believe that Ohio has been settled?

we are calling this on the basis of 74 percent of the vote being in and
when 77 percent is in, Secretary of State (INAUDIBLE) the director of the
Ohio campaign for Romney on the other end of the line refreshing the page
every few seconds.


HARRIS-PERRY: No word on if Karl Rove is still refreshing the Web site and
count those numbers in Ohio, seriously what?

WHITE: I feel like you have been mean to Karl Rove, OK? Karl Rove, you
have to understand where he was coming from at that very moment. He just
wasted over a quarter of a billion dollars from failing, like he has failed
nationally, like it was epic. And you happened to be, as you are failing
on national television and I was I like, what am I supposed to do? You
just wasted millions of dollars. Other people`s money. People gave you
money. You said I got this, I understand this. They gave you hundreds of
millions of dollars, you fail and you have all the camera is on you. I
would have been -- Ohio doesn`t exist. I don`t see why you are counting
votes from them.

KILSTEIN: I was waiting for him to say you want evidence. I stole the
2004-2008 election.


HARRIS-PERRY: You said Megyn Kelly of FOX News went back to the decision
desk, right? He said, you have to go back and see if it`s true what is
happening there.

KILSTEIN: That was the FOX great moment, too. You have this like, just
like this rich white dude to the host, and he was just, woman, go find

KNEFEL: The only time I found myself like yes, go Megyn Kelly, go.


ZAYID: But, she found a way to destroy the moment because she needed help
getting down three stairs. She`s like I`m a feeble woman in heels, please
help me. And I kept waiting for Karl Rove to like lose it and flip over
the table like a real housewife were just like stripped down naked and
scream jihad as he ran - FOX News. I would have really loved to hear old
Karl Rove scream.


KNEFEL: Everybody`s head explodes and FOX News just like goes black.

HARRIS-PERRY: It did feel like there was a fair bit of implosion going on.
Like it was just sort of odd to watch Republicans we often thought of as
crafty, maybe you know scary, but not just imploding. For me, the Big Bird
moment, was Mitt Romney saying he was going to fire Big Bird. I guess we
have to remind ourselves of that.


M. ROMNEY: I`m sorry Jim, I`m going to stop the subsidy to PBS. I`m going
to stop all the things and I like PBS. I like Big Bird. I actually like
you, too. But, I`m not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow
money from China to pay for it.


KILSTEIN: Sad trauma. No more Big Bird.

HARRIS-PERRY: That happened.

WHITE: That`s Mitt Romney. The whole election we get watching Mitt


WHITE: The whole time we watch Mitt Romney kind a like do these things
where you just go common says you can`t do that. By the way, just a side
note, why was he even moderating at the time? Like I really felt like he
didn`t want to be there. Like they kidnapped (INAUDIBLE) was looking for
him. And because he was just not even there in the first place, and then
Mitt Romney was like he did that the entire time. Mitt Romney put his foot
in his mouth more time in this election from he made that move, when he was
out there and made a birther joke. He decided to make a birther joke. A
birther joke!

HARRIS-PERRY: OK. You have been called many things but --


HARRIS-PERRY: Mitt Romney has been called many things in 2012 and beyond
but I`m going to go with here, it`s the first time he was called a knee
grow, spells k-n-e-e-g-r-o-w.

KILSTEIN: He doesn`t have that on his business coat? You mean, that was
just a rumor?


WHITE: This will give him confidence when he goes back in to the NAACP.

HARRIS-PERRY: OK. Well, speaking of which, one of the things that became
clear immediately after the election, was they fitted out that Mitt Romney
was making a mess. Wasn`t he gross than others?


HARRIS-PERRY: And so my own governor, Bobby Jindal immediately,
immediately threw Romney under the bus, worse I think than Romney had threw
Big Bird under the bus. Take a listen.


GOV. BOBBY JINDAL (R), LOUISIANA: We have to compete for 100 percent of
the vote, not 53 percent but 100 percent of the vote. Governor Romney`s
campaign, I don`t think laid out a specific vision in connection with the
American voters. Governor Romney is an honorable person and should be
thanked for his many years of public service. But his campaign was largely
by his biography and experience.


HARRIS-PERRY: He was like what? What do you want?

KILSTEIN: That wasn`t just Tag Romney, with the clip you played earlier.
He never wanted to run for president. It`s like when did Romney become a
hipster dude who is like oh, I never really wanted to run for president. I
want to listen to the violin and bring back earth and development. And
like everyone included, when your son is trying to, like that line is
amazing, too because it was like he doesn`t want to be president. I was
like maybe you should have stopped tweeting vote for my dad for president.
I think what Jindal, you shouldn`t been president, then maybe, you
shouldn`t have been out campaigning.

WHITE: That`s the thing. What you are seeing from Jindal and basically a
lot of Republicans, they didn`t want Romney, per se. And they will always
try to hedge their bet the whole time. Like it`s like the Chris Christie
speech of the RNC.


WHITE: It`s like I am amazing. You might not have heard this about me. I
understand we are voting for someone else. But remember, four years from
now, I`m amazing.

HARRIS-PERRY: That was the final vision, right, of 2012 was hurricane
Sandy hits. It is a tragic moment and the embrace of Chris Christie and
President Obama that moment that says you know what? Clearly, I did not
believe Mitt Romney could possibly win this election so I`m going to
actually hug the current Democratic president of the United States.

When I come back, you are going to make you guys play a pop quiz, one of
our favorite things to do. We are going to name that twit. Go ahead. You
can play along at home, too.


HARRIS-PERRY: Shakespeare said brevity is the soul of whit. But, if you
can do it in only 140 characters, you might have the soul of a twit. In
2012 there was a half billion registered twitter users and some of the
tweets they shared were unforgettable.

So, this morning, it`s time for very special pop quiz.

All right. I know. It makes me happy though. We`ll reveal our favorite
tweets and see if the panel can do it. Everyone, grab your bell. Everyone
has a bell and here is going to work. I will read you the tweet and then
you ring in and then you tell me who you think it was. So, here is the
very first one.

KILSTEIN: I get deadly competitive, by the way, guys.


KNEFEL: So do I.


HARRIS-PERRY: Here we go. If Romney gets elected, I don`t know if I can
breathe the same air as him and his right-wing homophobic woman hating tea
bagger masters.


HARRIS-PERRY: It was, in fact, not you.

KILSTEIN: OK. I don`t know.

HARRIS-PERRY: But, this is someone who also has quite a crush on Chris
Hayes. Who is the host --?

ZAYID: Me. Sorry.

HARRIS-PERRY: It`s also someone who is a superstar who has one name, but
it is not Madonna.

ZAYID: Cher.


KILSTEIN: She didn`t ring the bell.

HARRIS-PERRY: I want to give it to her. How do you guys not know Cher has
a Crush on Chris Hayes? Where have you been?

All right. Here`s the second one. Which candidate tweeted this on
election night? This election is a total sham and travesty. We are not a

KNEFEL: Candidate?

HARRIS-PERRY: It was a candidate.

WHITE: In the race?

KILSTEIN: I don`t think Michele Bachmann has a twitter.

HARRIS-PERRY: It was candidate who as no longer in the race and who is a
billionaire, almost candidate, an almost candidate.

KNEFEL: Donald Trump.

HARRIS-PERRY: There you go.

KNEFEL: He was a pretend candidate. He thinks he can do whatever he wants
because he had money.

HARRIS-PERRY: Well, sometimes he has money and then--.

WHITE: History.

HARRIS-PERRY: All right. Which actor gave us this tweet? You know your
party is in trouble when you read this, a, the rape guy lost, b, which one?

KILSTEIN: I`m so bad at games.

WHITE: Ben Affleck.

HARRIS-PERRY: Good idea. Actually, this guy is the lead character in a
show that is centered around this building.

KILSTEIN: Alec Baldwin.

HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. We got a couple of them.

KILSTEIN: Adam Baldwin is the racist one. He shames the Baldwin family.

KNEFEL: I hope Alec Baldwin just walks in and just like, have a good


HARRIS-PERRY: That would be good if Alec Baldwin walked in.

KILSTEIN: He hovers around "30 rock." Although, river is not sure.

HARRIS-PERRY: Which conservative candidate gave us this one, excuse me,
conservative journalist gave this tweet. Horrible possibility, if the
geeks are right about Ohio, might they be also right about the climate?
This is a journalist conservative who writes for the daily beast, has
recent e-book.

KILSTEIN: Question. Conservative and journalist is an Oxy Moron. I
haven`t won a sticker.

HARRIS-PERRY: You guys are rock. OK. He has had a recent e-book titled
"why Romney lost."

ZAYID: Joe Scarborough.


HARRIS-PERRY: Not him. David Frum.

WHITE: I prefer her answer.

ZAYID: I only asked because he and Nate Silver head --

KILSTEIN: I hope Joe Scarborough walks in now with Alec Baldwin.


HARRIS-PERRY: All right, here`s one. Which presidential candidate tweeted
this, honored to have Chuck Norris` endorsement, he will make an excellent
secretary of attack.

KILSTEIN: I`m guessing because he`s crazy, Mike Huckabee?

HARRIS-PERRY: No. A candidate who --

KILSTEIN: I`m going to steal all your tickers.

HARRIS-PERRY: This is a guy named after a small, green, lizard creature.

ZAYID: Newt.

HARRIS-PERRY: There you go, Newt Gingrich. That is clearly socialist,
some kind of redistribution of Nerdland stickers.

Which anti-tax titan tweeted this one? A bench Twinkie, shop at Walmart

KILSTEIN: That horrible guy. The guy -- the guy -- Grover Norquist.

HARRIS-PERRY: There you go. Grover Norquist, also named after fuzzy blue
Sesame Street. I have a bonus one for you. Some people are going to have
problems if they don`t get this one.

Bonus round question, which comedian stirred up controversy?

WHITE: Chris Rock.

HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. The answer is Chris rock and the tweet is, happy white
people`s independence day. The slaves weren`t free, but I`m sure they
enjoyed the fireworks.

WHITE: That was on the black level. It`s our psychic ability there.

KILSTEIN: I literally got a participation sticker. I`m going wear it
proudly. That`s what I got.

HARRIS-PERRY: But wait. Thank you for playing, Jamie. When we come back,
I`m going to talk about how chick-fil-a broke my heart in 2012.


HARRIS-PERRY: This year was so politicized waffle fries and fried chicken
became a political statement, all thanks to chick-fillets steamed
president, Dan Caf‚`s stance on same-sex marriage.


A little concerned about this whole issue of the family and how we define
the family. And so, we just want to encourage, you know, our nation that
god sets a standard to what a family is. It`s not going to come out of
Washington. It is not going to come out of, you know, some block. We
ought to pray for our politicians and the thought leaders. We are out here
to sell chicken.


HARRIS-PERRY: Just trying to sell some chicken while using millions of
those proceeds to support organizations that are rapidly anti-same-sex
marriage, anti-LGBTQ rights. When the public outcry against Chick-fillet
got so loud, it was Mike Huckabee to the rescue declaring August one to be
chick-fillet appreciation day. It also got help us inspiring group of
Church going folk raised their feast full of chicken in support. Sometimes
chicken isn`t just chicken.

Joining my panel is Dorie Clark, former spokesperson for Howard Dean,
contributing reporter at magazine and adjent professor at Duke University`s
global executive.

So Dorie, I have to say, there is something wonderful that it felt like
homophobia this year that became absurd and funny like, just ridiculous in
the certain way.

think, Melissa, in the case of chick-fil-a, they are bitter that all the
lesbians are vegetarians. So, he said they keep back yet.

KILSTEIN: Wow. That`s why lesbians like me so much.

HARRIS-PERRY: Because you too are vegetarian?

KILSTEIN: I`m a vegan.

WHITE: And you right. Because the story wasn`t so much about everyone is
still eating there. It`s suddenly become about the boycott. Because I was
a part of it and I was kind of peer analyst who used to be a part of it.
It was horrid. I travel. And I`m out of Chick-fil-a was a thing for me.
I know people don`t eat meat or whatever that fat thing. But for me, I
like chick-fil-a. I love chick-fil-a. It was easy when people you don`t
like their stuff like papa Johns. I don`t care, I`m from New York, I know
what pizza actually tastes like, so, boycott that but chick-fil-a, whoa!

KILSTEIN: I never really would have been in trouble if it was like the air
just a co-op.


HARRIS-PERRY: No, this was real. When I got to Charlotte, which is where
the DNC convention was and it was chick-fil-a everywhere. And I was like
I`m boycotting them. But even if I weren`t, can you imagine MSNBC anchor
seen with chick-fil-a bag at DNC?

KILSTEIN: It`s a shot where you are running with the bag.

WHITE: I had moments where I thought about who was looking. I was
standing in front of chick-fil-a. All right, I mean, it`s like, I mean,
one chick -- I mean how is this going to hurt gains. It`s a sandwich.
This is not right.

HARRIS-PERRY: Then you had to walk away.

CLARK: Fifteen years ago, we were all cracker barrel and that was when
they call the homophobic one. Now, they decided that they are cooler with
gay people, so I had to move on.

KILSTEIN: I just realized I was such a jerk, right, I was a progressive
racist against white people right there when you said cracker barrel. I
didn`t know that it is boring, but I was like that sounds right, the one
with the porch swing.

HARRIS-PERRY: That doesn`t sound quite progressive.

But there was the boycott on the other side, of course, was the J.C. Penney
boycott because of Ellen. So, you know, meanwhile, we are like suffering
around having no waffle fries, but we also saw the sense of -- that`s what
we are showing for that? OK. I don`t know why. That`s what we picked.

ZAYID: Boycotting J.C. Penney is not, it makes no sense to me. Nobody
chooses to go to J.C. Penney. So, it`s not something you can actually
boycott. You don`t choose to go to Penney`s.

CLARK: I`m feeling bad for them now. I want to go a belt or something.

KILSTEIN: I will do the opposite of you where I wasn`t like a J.C. Penney
fan, but I guess I have to find something.

ZAYID: You can smell the led.

WHITE: That sponsor is gone. What else we got.

HARRIS-PERRY: What else do we have? So, I have to say, the one that
really, that I have to say hurt was the American family association saying
that it was gays who cause the hurricane. Let`s listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: New Orleans like many places in America certainly has
more than her share of decadence. You could say well, what about San
Francisco, there are never hurricanes or typhoons there. No, they just
have some of the most devastating earthquakes in American history there.


HARRIS-PERRY: So, apparently, the home that I just bought that ended up on
the ground because of Isaac came because, maybe because I`m an ally but
certainly because of the decadence of my city.

KILSTEIN: I thought it was because of the wind. I`m old fashioned, I

CLARK: The rain, maybe.

CLARK: Pat Robertson said the gays caused 9/11. So, you know, it`s a long
history of treachery.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right, of the causes.

WHITE: If I were a Republican, I believe the homosexuals caused these
things, I would be nicer to them. Listen, can we get a summery.

HARRIS-PERRY: You guys are bad. Some was good stuff that happened. When
we come back, we are going to talk about the reasons they are worth
celebrating and raise our champagne glasses. There was some win for same-
sex marriage.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are the shoulder your girlfriend cries on when
complaining about you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We know all of your weaknesses.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have death stars and we are an army of fabulous
looks sky Walkers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So remember, we are doing you a huge solid by being
more attracted to each other than to your girlfriends.



HARRIS-PERRY: It was a banner year for LBGT rights, with the full
implementation of don`t ask don`t tell and first election victory for same
ex-marriage in Maine, Maryland, Washington state and Minnesota.

2012 was also the year at this nation`s first out and proud senator.
Senator Candy Baldwin was elected right along in this process with the re-
election of President Obama who was called the country`s first gay
president for his endorsement on same-sex marriage. In fact, "Out"
magazine called this year`s election the year of the gay.

So, what do we think? I mean, first of all obviously, the president isn`t
actually gay. But, neither was Bill Clinton actually black and yet there
was a sense that the president in coming out for marriage equality have
changed the game.

CLARK: He was pushed off the diving board a little bit as you talked about
by the vice president. But, absolutely, I mean, I think the fact the
president came out in support of gay marriage, the fact that in four states
for the first time voters were voting positively toward gay marriage or
blocking in the case of Minnesota, an attempt to in shrine the constitution
a ban on gay marriage. I mean, I think honestly, what was happening was
that for the first time voters said, well you know, the world is going to
end anyway thanks to the Mayan calendar. Let`s remind gay people a shout.

HARRIS-PERRY: Let`s look at the marriage equality because its start - I
mean, just t looks so much better than it once did. But, it`s worth sort
of pausing. Now, it also, however, is noticeably above the Mason-Dixon
line, right? So, it is doing much better. And yet, we still know there
are whole parts of the country where it`s not good to be gay.

ZAYID: It was so ground breaking for, you know, for a serious moment for
President Obama to come out on this even if he was shoved by Joe because he
breaks ground for so many different communities. You have the president
saying this. That`s huge. You have a person of color saying this. Then
you have a Muslim coming out. We are not what you think.

KILSTEIN: That`s definitely true, right?

HARRIS-PERRY: It`s not true that the president is Muslim.

KILSTEIN: I think, you know, like I want to celebrate all the victories
but we know your audience agrees with the victories because they are
terrible monsters.

HARRIS-PERRY: Some of them.

KILSTEIN: But, I do want to say to mostly Democrats watching, sorry, that
I think it`s time we stop supporting any Democrat that can`t get on stage
next to a homophobe and just be like you are ridiculous. They are saying
it`s going to ruin the sanctity of marriage. You are the only one that can
ruin your marriage. They act like if gay people can marry in all the
United States, there`s going to be a farmer down south who looks up at his
TV and has been married 30 years and has kids and a dog and he looks up and
it is like gay people can marry, he`s going to look at his wife and say now
I can open up the candy factory I have been dreaming about. I`m like it`s
never going to happen. And also, if you look at statistics, the first
state that legalized gay marriage actually has the least amount of divorce
while Texas, not really not really friendly to the gays, has the highest,

WHITE: Statistically speaking, I do point the country is for. It`s
leaning on that. We have the majority at this point. And I would argue
that we probably should thank the Republicans and George Bush has a little
bit for this. Because after eight years of the country going completely to
crap, people were way less worried about two gays getting married and more
worried about their 401(k). And so, they are like, hey, you know what, get
married, that`s fine. Could you get me a job?


HARRIS-PERRY: It`s completely generational at this point. I mean, the
numbers seem to show that, I mean, justice delays is justice denied. And
so, it is not OK for not to be in a place that fully quality not. But
clearly, just when people die, it`s going to be all right. Like on this
one topic, we just have to let the old guys die and then, then it`s going
to be fine.

KILSTEIN: Except for the old gay people.

WHITE: The marriage equality poster is just there saying wait? That is
terrible and hilarious.

KILSTEIN: And a rainbow above it.

CLARK: There are you go.

HARRIS-PERRY: When we come back, we are going to say why women have the
last laugh in 2012.


HARRIS-PERRY: Welcome back. I`m Melissa Harris-Perry.

We are looking back at the funny, absurd and ridiculous moments of 2012
that literally made Nerdland do a double take and goes, say what? One area
where there was no shortage of absurdity but, how politicians, especially
Republicans dealt with women. I mean they tried to deal with women, but
they failed. They had the wrong message, the wrong tactics, definitely the
wrong emissaries.


ANN ROMNEY, MITT ROMNEY`S WIFE: I love you, women.


HARRIS-PERRY: I don`t know about the RNC women, but I sure didn`t feel the
love this year, especially when your husband said this.


M. ROMNEY: We took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had
backgrounds to be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a
number of women`s groups and said, can you help us find folks. And they
brought whole binders full of women.


HARRIS-PERRY: Right, Mitt. That`s where you find qualified women, in
binders. Now you`ll have plenty of time to look through them, because not
only did Republicans want to put women in damn binders, they also wanted to
be all up in our vajayjays. I mean, all up in them. Really, guys?

I mean, I know what your fascination is with vajayjays, but seriously, what
your fascination with the female reproductive system?

Oh, that`s right. Apparently, you don`t know a thing about how it works.


FOSTER FRIESS, GOP DONOR: This contraceptive thing, my gosh, it`s so
inexpensive. You know, back in my days, they used Bayer aspirin for
contraceptives. The gals put it between their knees and it wasn`t that

ANDREA MITCHELL, MSNBC ANCHOR: Excuse me, I`m trying to catch my breath
from that, Mr. Friess, frankly.


HARRIS-PERRY: Now, you know when you leave a professional like Andrea
Mitchell speechless, you have said something very wrong.

And after Foster Friess, it`s as though Republicans came down with a bad
case of foot and mouth disease when it came to women`s reproductive rights.


REP. TODD AKIN (R), MISSOURI: If it`s a legitimate rape, the female body
has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is an issue that opponents of life throw out there
to make us look unreasonable. There`s no such exception as life of the

when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something
that God intended to happen.


HARRIS-PERRY: I just want to be sure I got it right. The female uterus is
magical. A mother`s life is not exceptional, but if you`re raped, you
shouldn`t have the option of ending that pregnancy because, after all, it
was God`s will.

Add to these comments the numerous the Republican-led legislatures tried to
pass this year.

Arizona House bill 2036 or the Mother`s Health and Safety Act which looks
to ban abortions beyond 20 weeks. The only exception is in the case of a
medical emergency. That law is currently being challenged.

In Virginia, Governor Bob McDonnell signed an amended House bill 462 into
law which requires a woman to have an abdominal or transvaginal ultrasound
prior to getting an abortion. But she won`t have to see the imaging or
hear the heartbeat. Gee, thanks.

And Ohio has had several attempts to limit reproductive rights, which has
exasperated many state law makers like Nerdland`s own favorite, Nina


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think my colleagues are going to talk.

SEN. TINA TURNER (D), OHIO: This is a message to the GOP.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For those of you in the back of the room, Senator,
would you like to read what it says?

TURNER: Yes. The GOP stands for "get out of our panties." And that`s
exactly what the GOP to do.


HARRIS-PERRY: Get out of our panties. Preach, Nina!

This year, the GOP was more concerned with telling women who to do with our
bodies and getting into our panties for no fun purposes and left them
looking quite tone death.

But, quite frankly, fellows, that may be why you lost the White House,
because you were more concerned with what is between our legs and we are
dealing with what is between our ears to defeat you.

At the table: Molly Knefel, a stand-up comic and writer and co-host of
"Radio Dispatch"; Maysoon Zayid, who is the founder of New York Arab Comedy
Festival; Dorie Clark, adjunct professor at Duke University and former
spokeswoman for Howard Dean; and Jaime Kilstein, the co-host of "Citizen

KILSTEIN: I`m sorry for my people.

HARRIS-PERRY: Could you please defend white men in this moment?

KILSTEIN: Got it. I -- first of all, I was not aware the uterus is not
magical. So, I don`t get a sticker. I find out that uteri are magical.
This is a very dark day for me.

I don`t -- I mean, I`m glad it happened because, again, kind of like the
Mitt Romney 47 percent, it was just like -- here`s what we think. If you
told me like an old withering white guy is going to go on TV and actually
say, back in my day, I didn`t actually think people said that without --
like I was waiting for if she talked back we murdered her for being a

It was so crazy, but this is what a lot of the, quote-unquote, "moderate
conservatives". We talk about moderates, oh, he doesn`t want to stone gay
people so he`s a moderate.

If you are against a woman`s right to do what she wants with her body, you
are not a moderate, at all. I don`t care about your tax policy, you are
not a moderate.

HARRIS-PERRY: I mean, in this one, we weren`t even talking abortion. We
had birth control on the table as conversation.

ZAYID: I felt like -- I say this to my friends. I felt they were directly
trying to kill me with their women`s policies last year, because I`m one of
those freaky people that take birth control medicinally. You know, because
a woman loves to decide what we can and we can`t take, I take nothing else
prescription. That`s all I take.

So, they don`t want me to take my birth control. If I get knocked up, it
will kill me like Shelby from "Steel Magnolias", but they won`t let me have
a life-saving abortion after they won`t let me take the birth control that
I`m not allowed to have.

So, apparently, birth control is only 99.8 percent successful. I did get
knocked up. I had a miscarriage, but I still had to have an abortion.
They would want you to wait until you went septic like the woman did in


ZAYID: So, their entire goal was to kill me. I talked to my sisters like
Molly, and we decided in solidarity to sink them first.


HARRIS-PERRY: I mean, seriously, to sink them first. I mean, when we look
at the numbers, what happened? When there are ways to read the outcomes,
basically women voters in this election, I think didn`t feel the sense of
trying to be killed, but when you saw women overall chose President Obama
over Mitt Romney, 55 to 44. There you go.

And then, particularly, you look at single women, 67-31, it`s not even

KNEFEL: I think there was a revulsion among women, even women who were not
political necessarily, who aren`t super into politics, because you hear all
these mostly old white dudes trying to push forward as much legislation
about our buddies as possible. They can`t even say the word vagina. It
was a contest to see how they could, how many body parts they could
restrict without naming those body parts.

ZAYID: But you could say transvaginal. It`s OK as long as it was vital.

KNEFEL: Although, you remember that guy, he was in Virginia, a politician
who kept saying trans-v, blah, blah.


KNEFEL: So, it was -- it was -- so I think a lot of women realized that,
you know, now it`s personal, you know?

HARRIS-PERRY: I love some of the counter legislation that women -- state
legislatures put out. There was a lot of hilarity in these. When we look
at the names of some of these, in Oklahoma, Senator Candace Johnson
introduced SB 1433, every sperm is sacred, right? And this was the like
you can`t jerk off.

And then Georgia, we introduced the anti-vasectomy act, right, where you
had to actually have a heart palpitation test first.

In Ohio, Nina Turner introduced the Viagra bill to make it equally as
difficult to get as birth control.

And then in Virginia, the idea of rectal exams and cardiac stress tests
before a Viagra prescription.

These were -- these felt to me like exactly how one uses comedy to
demonstrate the ridiculousness of the war on women.

CLARK: I think it`s a great point. What was especially funny about the
Ann Romney speech -- I love women -- was, they are so heavily scripted.
The talks at the RNC, go through a million edits. The big thing, she`s
deviating from the script. This is the real Ann Romney.


CLARK: It`s like she`s Rod Stewart. Like (INAUDIBLE) in the house, I love
you women. There she is.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right. That was her unscripted real moment.

CLARK: Right.

KILSTEIN: And that really -- the whole Republican convention was like the
whole political circus in action, because you have a bunch of men or men`s
wives or women politicians who had spent the whole year trying to restrict
women`s bodies, right? But then they get up there and the big save,
they`re just like oh, I don`t care about rape or birth control or abortion.
And then they all get up there and they`re like I have a mother. I was
like it`s their grace.

That`s like the ultra inversion of I have a black friend. I came out after
a lady`s vagina, so I can`t hate women.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right, right.

KNEFEL: The word mom was interchangeably with the word woman at the RNC.
I started paying attention. They would just say, it was like, you know,
all the little boys and future moms out there, you know, it completely
erased the female identity and equated it with mom, because everybody has a
mom. So, how could Paul Ryan hate women if he has a mom?

KILSTEIN: Right. And it also shows how they think of women, right? Where
just like all of the mothers out there and the people who cook me food and
the people who --

HARRIS-PERRY: And, of course, Mitt Romney was going to give women flex
time so they could go home to cook food.

I thought the most sad and absurd moment was the -- you were talking about
how you and Molly got together and decided to defeat them. But it was the
Planned Parenthood versus Susan Komen fight and the idea that in the midst
of all of this, we had to deal with this idea that somehow women`s breast
health and women`s reproductive rights were at odds with one another. I
mean, that level of absurdity was painful.

Thank you, Dorie. I appreciate you coming to play the street man on the

The rest are back for more.

And after the break, Sandra Fluke. And she will tell us about the year
that she is never going to forget.


HARRIS-PERRY: We`re back discussing the absurd moments of 2012 that
usually involved men making comments about women and their bodies that were
just plain bananas.

Elon James White, columnist and blogger and the host of "This Week in
Blackness" is back at the table. And joining me from Washington, D.C. is
the woman who literally became the face of the proverbial war on women,
Sandra Fluke.

Nice to see you.


HARRIS-PERRY: So, you have gone out and hung out with us in Atlanta a
couple times this year. This is perhaps the most ridiculous of them all.
I`m sorry you are not here to have champagne with us.

FLUKE: Where is my champagne? Seriously. I see this happening and --

HARRIS-PERRY: I`m very sorry, Sandra. But let me ask, because it did
feel, at a certain point, like what happened was simply absurd. That you
sort of had to laugh at the ridiculousness of finding yourself, on the one
hand, you`ve been an amazing kind of clarion voice on this question -- but
the very fact that you ended up there.

FLUKE: Yes. It`s certainly been an absurd year. But, you know, I have to
correct you on that it`s just been this year, because if you read the
conspiracy theories, I have actually been plotting 2012 with President
Obama for many years. And it`s actually -- I was planted, my law school
tuition paid for to create this controversy.

HARRIS-PERRY: Wow, I had no idea.

FLUKE: Oh, yes. I actually -- I actually changed my name to make it seem
more like it was more of a random occurrence.

HARRIS-PERRY: It`s like luck. Yes.

FLUKE: My relatives asked me, why didn`t we go with something easier to
pronounce when we changed it to be "Fluke" as in an unexpected, random

HARRIS-PERRY: Gotcha. I`m still pronouncing it wrong. More on that later
in the show.


HARRIS-PERRY: I want to bring in some of the folks on my panel, too,
around this because it did, I think if there was one fundamentally absurd
moment, it was that panel of all men sitting in front of the Congress,
actually talking about women -- I mean, just the visual of that was so far
beyond anything imaginable.

ZAYID: We keep having these moments in America that remind me of being in
the Middle East, because again, like a whole roomful of men discussing
women`s issues without like one single a woman there. That`s why you see,
like, you know, on Egyptian state television. It`s what you`re seeing

But I also just want to commend Sandra for being so, like grace under fire.


ZAYID: If Rush Limbaugh called me a slut, people would be holding me back
and I might be taking off my rings, like, she`s been really --

HARRIS-PERRY: Vaseline on the face, all that?

KNEFEL: What`s great about the all male panel, too, was it turned kind of
meta, because then there would be all male panels on TV talking about the
all male panels. All these men would be on TV and they`re like, where are
the women at. And there would be -- you know, obviously, no women in there
was this kind of a self-perpetuating thing. Luckily, Sandra was able to,
her voice was able to be amplified.

But watching that echo chamber of males discussing female issues over and
over and over throughout the election.


KILSTEIN: Speaking of males discussing female issues, I have something to
say. I`m a huge, also fan of what Sandra has done. And something that I
think we need to talk about is a lot of, even in the liberal sphere of men,
sort of being a feminist ends at like supporting abortion because we don`t
want to wear a condom, right? And --


KILSTEIN: Sorry, sorry. I`m sorry. When she said jerking off --


KILSTEIN: So, I think that, you know, people like Sandra and every female
journalist I know and my female friends on Twitter, the level of abuse they
get is so much worse than what any man I have seen ever gets.

I mean, you are talking rape threats daily. You are talking people hacking
into their stuff, saying they are going to find their addresses. And a lot
of this stems from rape culture, from harassment culture.


KILSTEIN: And I think it`s time for all men to start calling out other
men. I mean, if one of your friends, even if it`s simple as just like
heckling a girl on the street, like this stuff has just become so accepted?

HARRIS-PERRY: Jamie, I want -- because part of that is actually reflected
in our politics. So, Sandra, I want to point out that as the year comes to
a close, as much as we are kind of pointing out the absurd, there`s also
this ridiculousness of the VAWA, the Violence Against Women Act, currently
being held up in Congress. And it`s being held up because it enumerates
protections for victims of domestic violence who are in LBGT communities.

It expands the availability of visas for undocumented immigrants. In other
words, folk who are -- you know, could possibly be deported, therefore they
don`t come forward when they have been victimized by domestic violence.
And then also and providing Native American tribes with the ability to
prosecute against non-Indians who are offenders in domestic violent crimes.
They seem so common sense. And yet, as we end 2012, this may not pass.

FLUKE: Yes. That`s right. It`s going to have to be a fight in the next
Congress. It really seems like the provision at stake right now is about
allowing women on tribal lands to hold accountable the abusers or those who
have assaulted them. There seems to be some conservative leaders in
Congress who are more concerned about the concerns of that abuser than
about those women and their ability to access orders of protection and have
a fair trial for those who have assaulted them.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right. So, as much as it feels like we walk away from 2012
with a sense of victory, that continuing reality of VAWA being held up
helps us realize the war on women continues.


WHITE: This right here, this whole situation, even the conversation we are
having is why I sometimes question the idea of American exceptionalism,
just from (INAUDIBLE). Because if we were so exceptional, we would have
common sense, and like, common sense takes, hey, we are talking about
controlling a woman`s body. You know what? Probably should have a woman
in the room.

But I don`t understand how no one was there was like, somebody just raise a
hand and like -- excuse me, we don`t -- we are talking about vaginas and we
don`t have one. Like for someone to say like that, then go, oh, you`re so.
So, at least call in one vagina, get one in here just so that we don`t look
terrible. Like common sense.

KILSTEIN: They`ll get an intern vagina.

HARRIS-PERRY: No! Do not get an intern. Absolutely not.

ZAYID: It`s that frightening. Congress is being disappointing every
single time, because with the Violence Against Women Act, you`re nitpicking
and giving no acknowledgment to their actual safety. And then they also
failed the disability treaty.

HARRIS-PERRY: Oh, right.

ZAYID: It`s like, it doesn`t matter how simple the vote yes should be.
They are still nitpicking and ignoring that there are actual people.

HARRIS-PERRY: Right. I feel like I just want to remind folks if they
don`t know the story, right? This is a treaty to simply say, it`s not a
law. We already have the Americans with Disabilities Act, it`s to say this
should be part of the international --

ZAYID: And the treaty was based on our law --


ZAYID: -- and Bob Dole came out and he even -- like how do you say no to
Bob Dole? I was taught to respect my elders. Bob Dole is -- and we failed


ZAYID: Like we said, with the American exceptionalism, when we are not
first and foremost protecting our women, when we refuse to protect the
disabled society, worldwide, when we lose nothing. That`s why they`re at 4

HARRIS-PERRY: Sandra, let me end with you on this because I just want you
to help us have kind of a New Year`s resolution in 2013, for those of us
who are fundamentally concern with issues of reproductive rights and
women`s equality. What should be on our agenda for the next year?

FLUKE: I think it`s the Violence Against Women Act. It`s the Trafficking
Victims Protection Reauthorization Act. We were just talking about the
Disability Treaty. I`d love to see ratification of the Women`s Rights
Treaty, the U.N. treaty there.

But, overall, what should be the resolution is be involved and informed.
To not, as the president said, you know, democracy doesn`t just happen on
Election Day. I think that`s what we all have to do better about is being
really involved in contacting our legislatures even when it`s not an
election year.

HARRIS-PERRY: Thank you to Sandra Fluke in Washington. You were truly
exceptional this year. And so I appreciate the number of times, many
times, to come spent a little time with us here in Nerdland.

FLUKE: Thank you for having me. Even without the champagne.

HARRIS-PERRY: Even without the champagne.

Up next, I just destroyed Sandra`s last name. So, I`m going to show you a
very personal blooper reel.


HARRIS-PERRY: OK. Turn about is fair play. The next segment is one my
staff is gently forcing me to do. Full disclosure: I have not seen what
you are about to see, which is a little terrifying. But I can tell you
this: if New Year is about resolutions, then I vow, OK, I really do vow to
do my very, very best not to do what you are about to see me do over and
over again. Roll the package.



HARRIS-PERRY: In Pennsylvania last week, State Representative Mike
Turetsky (ph) let the cat out of the bag.


HARRIS-PERRY: Yes, Turzai.

And Ileana Jimendez (ph).


HARRIS-PERRY: Jimenez, Jimenez, a high school English teacher. Ileana
Jimenez. Sorry. Jimenez. I`m so -- why do I`m doing this? OK, perhaps I
needed more Spanish in my public education.

Sonia Rogostoky


HARRIS-PERRY: Rastogi. Sonia Rastogi, an advocacy coordinator for the
Positive Women`s Network.

And Igor Vormisky, deputy editor of I feel like I
butchered your last name, Igor.


HARRIS-PERRY: Volsky. All right. I have a tendency to do that.

I am killing your name for you, I`m sorry.

And Julie Zeiling -- Zeilinger, I`m sorry, an undergrad at Barner College
and author of the book, "A Little F`d Up."

Lula Jebreila.




HARRIS-PERRY: Writer and social commentator.

And joining us is Katie McCormick Level -- oh, Lelyveld.


HARRIS-PERRY: Secretary to -- former press secretary to First Lady
Michelle Obama.

And joining us at the table is Stephanie -- oh, pronounce your last name
for me, Stephanie.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Stephanie Schriock (ph).

HARRIS-PERRY: Schriock. Stephanie Schriock who is president of Emily`s
List. I know your work so well. Stephanie Schriock, tell me -- Schriock.


HARRIS-PERRY: I don`t know -- I`m bad. I`m bad.

Jeff Jacoby, op-ed columnist for "The Boston Globe". First of all, I
apologize for getting your last name wrong, Jacobi.

Deal with me here, Vera Thomas (ph), Jeff Jacobi. Jeff Jackobi --


HARRIS-PERRY: Jacobi. I keep butchering it.


HARRIS-PERRY: Well, if you can`t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at?

Up next, the year in race. Really.


HARRIS-PERRY: Welcome back. It`s our year in review show. We have hit on
politics, we talked LGBT for 2012. We`ve covered all the ladies issues out

But this being MHP and us sitting here in Nerdland, you know, what it`s
yep, we are going to talk race. And what better time to do a 2012 race
discussion, what better way to start it than in this moment?

Roll the split screen. Yes, there it is. The NAACP convention from July.
There was Mitt Romney and there was Joe Biden.

Let`s take a listen first to Governor Romney`s address, shall we?


M. ROMNEY: If our goal is jobs, we have to stop spending over $1 trillion
more than we take in every year. And so --


M. ROMNEY: And so to do that, I`m going to eliminate every nonessential
program I can find. That includes Obamacare. I`m going to work to reform
and save --



HARRIS-PERRY: OK. Now, let`s hear some of the vice president.


BIDEN: I`m a United States senator and vice president of the United States
for one reason, because I was educated. I was educated by Lewis L.
Redding. I was educated by Reverend Maurice Moyer. I was educated by Lit
Mitchell, Hicks Anderson, and I went through the battle with mouse. Mouse,
are you out there? Hey, mouse, how you doing, man?


HARRIS-PERRY: I love that moment. You know that mouse. Mouse, mouse,

But the best joke of all majors has been this, despite the billboards
trying to scare us, despite the laws designs to dissuade us, despite the
long lines meant to exhaust us, we, the black folks of America voted, big
time. Take a look at this chart. It might look confusing.

But the latest research from the Pew Center finds that African-Americans
voted at a higher rate this year than other minority groups. And for the
first time in history, may also have voted at a higher rate than white

Here`s how it breaks down -- according to the U.S. Census Bureau, African-
Americans make up about 12 percent of the U.S. population but were 13
percent of voter turnout. And white Americans make up about 71 percent of
the population. Excuse me, of the voting population but 72 percent of
voter turnout.

So, after all those attempts of voter suppression, surprise, black folks
came out en masse.

Back at the table with a bunch of comedians.

Nice to see you again, folks.

So, my favorite moment of the entire campaign was Biden and the mouse
comment. I -- he became --

WHITE: Uncle Joe.


WHITE: He`s speaking somewhere. He`s just like mouse (INAUDIBLE) relax.
That`s him. It actually comes off really genuine, which is why he gets
away with it.

And after that NAACP event, Mitt Romney went out somewhere that night and
then bragged about getting booed. We were like listen, if they want free
stuff, vote for the other guy. We did.


KILSTEIN: I want mousey out there to be my stand-up catch phrase, because
I never had a catch phrase anytime I say something like edgy, and the crowd
goes oh -- mouse, are you out there and high five everybody.

The voting makes me so happy because I don`t -- the minute I`m on Citizen
Radio, I never admitted it on cable, but I really didn`t vote. I was
really apathetic. I didn`t vote until, I don`t know, like really recently.
Like the Obama primaries, Obama/Hillary was the first time I voted.

HARRIS-PERRY: All right.

KILSTEIN: And one of the reasons I voted, and I wonder if it`s what
happened with the black community, was -- I was just like, all the
candidates were the same. I didn`t know about politics and I just was like

Did you know Karl Rove is rigging elections and trying to make it so you
don`t vote? I was just like, signed up and I`m going to vote. And I sign
up and I voted. And every time I vote, I`m just like, go to hell, Rove.
And then I vote.

And it`s like, you know, if people are working that hard to suppress your
vote, maybe that means your voice matters.

WHITE: That`s right. Right there, you hit on the magical part, I feel as
if the people -- the evil folks in the room, then we decided we are going
to disenfranchise the vote, we`re going to do this, it`s going to work,
it`s going to be amazing, they didn`t realize that the civil rights
movement wasn`t that far gone. All of a sudden, all black people started
coming out going, you know we died for the vote. We died. Go out there
and vote. Vote now.

What was -- every person in a civil rights march all came out and was like,
vote. And they didn`t realize how that works.

HARRIS-PERRY: And it was also pretty shocking how many young people who
weren`t part, but who similarly thought that sense, OK, now, you know, this
may not be perfect choices. But there was some -- part of it certainly was
the voter suppression. The other piece of it was what constantly felt like
this kind of racialized attacks.

I want to hear Mitt Romney talking about the idea of self-deportation.


M. ROMNEY: The answer is self-deportation, which is people decide that
they can do better going home because they can`t find work here because
they don`t have legal documentation to allow them to work here.


KNEFEL: That`s the thing. I think there`s racism has probably been a part
of every presidential election and there`s been racist language employed.

But 2012, the palpable racism of basically all the Republican candidates
and especially of Romney -- I mean, you can just sense it. You can sense
it during the debates. You can sense when he was on stage with Obama. You
can just feel it.

For me, just watching him made me furious, because you could just -- his
white privilege and his feelings of superiority felt very, very clear.
They were emanating from him.

HARRIS-PERRY: Yes, maybe we have to be careful in that. So, within the
context of jokes, we don`t -- I mean, I don`t want to label Mitt Romney
himself individually a racist. I feel like I don`t know what is in Mitt
Romney`s heart one way or another.

KNEFEL: Right.

HARRIS-PERRY: There was a way like discourse like self-deportation had
this clear like racialized overtone. I mean, it was not the self-
deportation of the French-Canadians, right? It was clearly about self-
deportation of Spanish speaking Latinos.

ZAYID: You said it`s not fair to call him a racist, but Mitt Romney did no
favors for himself, because number one, he confused President Obama with
giving people free stuff comments.


ZAYID: You can`t tell black people apart, obviously. And the second thing
is, he went on Telemundo in brown make up. He wore brown makeup on
Telemundo to court the Latino vote.

HARRIS-PERRY: I`m sorry, that happened?

ZAYID: Have you seen him on Telemundo?

WHITE: He got tan and he went out there, he looked really, really brown.

ZAYID: The Grinch`s heart got five sizes bigger, his skin got five shades

HARRIS-PERRY: More tan than John Boehner

ZAYID: Yes. Same orange.

WHITE: I totally agree with you. We have to be careful about how we label
things, because the only thing they`ll hear is that, that panel said all
the Republicans are racist. I know, clearly, it`s not what I`m saying.

But this year, if it wasn`t a year of racism, it was a year of white
privilege. The idea here was that white privilege was so, like, they
didn`t understand what was happening. But it was one of the first times
where every time it would happened, there just be a chorus of people going,
hey, that`s a lot of white privilege you have there. What are you talking


WHITE: We are completely fine. It just kept happening. It`s why I
believe we noticed it so much. It was the first we called it out almost
every time.

HARRIS-PERRY: And one of the things that I like, though, about the
distinction is we saw it happened because there was a moment when Joe Biden
himself also said something that was at a minimum a little tricky.

So, let`s listen to Joe Biden and his comment about where we might end up
if Romney ended up winning.


BIDEN: Romney wants to let -- he said in the first 100 days, he`s going to
let the big banks once again write their own rules. Unchain Wall Street!


BIDEN: They`re going to put y`all back in chains.


WHITE: Uncle Joe.

HARRIS-PERRY: Wait. So, of course, immediately you get, well, that
statement was itself racist. He`s talking chain. But it was exactly this
distinction. Yes, but he`s running as the vice president with the black

And they are supporting a set of public policies that support racial
equality, not inequality. So, you could start to parse that out a little

KILSTEIN: I can help him out. He should just have said, mousey, where you
at? Yes!

I -- obviously, I agree with you because we can`t say all Republicans are
racists. But what I can say 100 percent is that all Republicans hate poor
people. And what I also can say is that because a lot of their policies,
it disenfranchises communities of color.

And, you know, you saw, even if it`s not racism, it`s just disdain for
people who weren`t born into that privilege or who don`t have that kind of
privilege now. And I think even the ones who have black friends, really,
really harbor zero animosity, I think -- because they don`t know what it`s
like to grow up in communities like that, I really do think they don`t know
about institutionalized racism. I honestly think, why don`t they pull
themselves up by their boot straps? Maybe I`m helping them by cutting off
their entitlements.

When reality, it`s like their racist policies and they`re disdainful for
the poor.

KNEFEL: Any of these dog whistle words, right? Like all this dependency
on social programs and the way that Newt Gingrich was on I think FOX News
and said, maybe Obama is too busy playing basketball, and, you know, Mitt
Romney made a birther joke.

And so, yes, we can`t say necessarily that, you know, these individuals are
racist. But these dog whistle words that are meant to evoke fear and evoke
a reaction.

WHITE: Their fans are the worst part.

HARRIS-PERRY: Also, Molly, I`m going to -- we are going to come back on
that, because what we are going to do when we come back is, I`m going to
show you things that happened in 2012 and I`m going to ask you the question
-- is that racist? When we come back.


HARRIS-PERRY: We are back.

And since we have all these individuals at the table, I thought it would be
a good time for a lightning round. Now, this is a lightning round with
Molly, Maysoon, Elon and Jaime. We have been talking race in 2012. And
I`m asking you the question, was that racist?

So, I have, because any good race person needs it, a race card, for
everyone. Everyone at the table has a race card. Here we go.

So, what I`ll do is I`ll show you a picture or listen to a little bit of a
sound byte and you tell me, was that racist?

So, let`s start with this one. Here is a picture of Arizona`s Governor Jan
Brewer back in January when President Obama came to visit, she`s standing
on the tarmac and she said she felt threatened, and therefore stuck her
finger in his face and yelled at him.

Is that moment racist?

Oh, lots of race cards on that one.

KILSTEIN: I`m surprised she didn`t bring in Sheriff Joe to tuck him away.

WHITE: And it`s racist only because of the idea that she said she had to
go off because she felt threatened. You felt threatened by the most
visible Negro in the world right now and he`s surrounded by security, you
thought he was going to do something ugly.

HARRISON-PERRY: Don`t get me wrong. There are plenty of people should
feel threatened by President Obama. I`m just thinking the governor of
Arizona is probably --

WHITE: No, no.

KILSTEIN: I was also sort of racist because I just heard Jan Brewer and I
slowly put up my card.

ZAYID: I put it up for Arizona

HARRIS-PERRY: Oh, you heard Arizona.

ZAYID: (INAUDIBLE) I was like Arizona?


ZAYID: But there are fine people there, too.

HARRIS-PERRY: There are lovely people in Arizona. All right. And they
should all watch this show.

OK. Let`s listen to this one. This is our friend Newt Gingrich. This is
the guy who ran for president basically by saying a noun, a verb and then
food stamp.

So, in January, this is Newt Gingrich discussing his plan for our children.


NEWT GINGRICH (R), FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: You could take one janitor and
hire 37 kids to work in the school for the price of one janitor. And those
30 kids would be a lot less likely to drop out. They would actually have
money in their pocket. They`d learn to show up for work.


HARRIS-PERRY: So, this is his plan for American children. Cheap
janitorial work. Is this racist?

One race card, two race cards, not sure, Jaime?

KILSTEIN: Only because anytime I -- as a white guy, I`m trying to absolve
my white guilt, where I`m like he probably meant it as racist, but he just
hates poor people.

HARRIS-PERRY: Oh, I see. It`s just class --

KNEFEL: Intersectionally oppressive for people and for people of color.

HARRIS-PERRY: Oh, we needed a poverty card to do an intersection.

ZAYID: I`m going with he`s racist because he said Palestinians don`t
exist. So, he`s just racist.

KILSTEIN: I`m also have this in because I keep cheating with Elon`s card -

WHITE: I didn`t call racist, I called a-hole. This guy -- he is -- he`s
an a-hole. And he said that it`s just ridiculous what he was requesting,
but I don`t feel as if it was racist. There are so many other things.

HARRIS-PERRY: I bet it was.

WHITE: Harasses, completely protected in his bubble of wealth and
privilege, but racist?

HARRIS-PERRY: Maybe not.

ZAYID: I have some advisers that he was thinking of Honey Boo Boo and how
successful that child labor violation went. So, he just wanted to take it

HARRIS-PERRY: A little Honey Boo Boo for everybody.

Now, I`m also interested in Mitt Romney, because he at one point made a
joke back in August. It`s a joke where he`s just kind of feeling good.
You can tell he`s feeling the crowd.

Let`s listen to Mitt Romney back in August.


M. ROMNEY: Now, I love being home in this place where Ann and I were
raised, where both of us were born. No one`s ever asked to see my birth
certificate. They know that this is the place we were born and raised.


HARRIS-PERRY: Right here we were born and raised -- is this a racist

I had no race cards, no racist on this one.

ZAYID: No, just utter stupidity. A complete disconnect with the fact
that`s the most inappropriate thing he could have ever said, that we
already put it to bed, but they already put up a long form.

And as a comedian, I find it insulting that he used such an old, played out


KILSTEIN: You ever seen white people dance?

WHITE: And if you argue that it plays into racist tones, yes, I argue yes,
he did. Do I think that day he was racist? No, I -- again, it was a bad
move. He was feeling it because what he said --


WHITE: -- he stopped as if he was the rock and smelled the air around him
as he made the joke and everyone clapped or whatever. If you asked me if
that audience is racist, I don`t know. They were a little too happy when
he was like we were born here. Yes, I would have liked to have been a
black guy there.

KILSTEIN: The reason it`s racist is because, you know, he wouldn`t have
said that if he was talking about Joe Biden. Like people wouldn`t be --
they would be very confusing. Is Delaware not a state anymore? It was
clearly otherizing Barack Obama, you know? I mean --

HARRIS-PERRY: We need other cards. The race card is insufficient.


WHITE: It`s a big thing that is put on something. Sometimes it`s like
prejudice. It`s so big. You are completely an a-hole, but are you a

HARRIS-PERRY: So, here`s one that I think will really get us unsure. This
happened just this week.

And I`ve got to tell you, Nerdland could not decide. This is a photograph
of Arizona senator, keep your card down. I just said Arizona. John
McCain, he went to the fight Kraft hunger bowl to support baby and he took
this picture with a giant Oreo.

Elon James White, is this racist?

WHITE: It`s just weird. It`s not -- unless he tweeted out and said he and
Obama, it would be racist. What the hell are you doing McCain?

I feel like it`s an old white dude saying, hey, it`s an Oreo cookie.

KILSTEIN: Where is this Oreo`s birth certificate?

WHITE: Yes, there are ways this could have been quickly, but I don`t think

ZAYID: This isn`t racist, this is delicious. Yummy.

HARRIS-PERRY: You know what we do in Louisiana, we fry Oreo`s in batter
and eat fried Oreo`s. It`s really -- it really is quite delicious.

Thank you to Molly, and Elon and Maysoon and Jaime.

And more in just a moment. But, right now, it is time for a preview of
"WEEKENDS WITH ALEX WITT" hosted today by a black guy, T.J. Holmes.

Hi, T.J.

T.J. HOLMES, MSNBC ANCHOR: Oh my goodness. Melissa, had I known you got
champagne, Oreo cookies, racist, Arizona, a-hole thrown in there. Wow.
I`m on the wrong show apparently. But I digress.

Good morning to you all. The House is back. The Senate is back.
Everybody is back.

And the president is talking this morning. He`s talking exclusively to
"Meet the Press." We`ll have details on what may be a small deal
developing. Also, what will not be in that deal. Also, folks, looks like
your taxes are going to go up in some fashion. We`ll explain all of that.

Also, the pieces are in place for an economic bounce back in 2013. That`s
great news. But there are three more ways that Washington could mess this
whole thing up.

Plus, you will not believe it. The rush to buy guns since the Newtown
shooting. We`ll talk to a writer who went to a huge gun show. You have
got to hear some of the stories out of here.

And also, in today`s office politics, Alex is talking to Lester Holt about
his fascination with aviation and some of the really interesting people he
rocked out with.

All of that coming up shortly. Get back to the bubbly now.

HARRIS-PERRY: Thanks, T.J. I`ve cut up so bad this week. I hope -- I
hope I still get to do this again next week.

HOLMES: You`ll be back.

HARRIS-PERRY: Thanks for sitting in today.

HOLMES: No problem.

HARRIS-PERRY: Up next, Nerdland is revealed in the form of cartoon


HARRIS-PERRY: The name of this show is MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY. But do not
be fooled, I don`t create this show by myself. What you see in weekend
mornings is the result of the brilliant insights, careful research, deep
commitments and serious hard work of a whole team of people.

The last show of the year seems like the right time to say thank you, and
to introduce you to the many nerds who bring you Nerdland every week. Have
a safe and happy New Year celebration. We`re going to see you in 2013.
Roll it.



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