PoliticsNation, Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

May 29, 2013

Guests: James Peterson, Peter Goodman, Rani Whitfield

REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: Thanks, Chris. And thanks to you
for tuning in.

Tonight`s lead, end of the era. Michele Bachmann, founder of the tea
party caucus, a former presidential hopeful, the right-wing`s cheerleader
against Obama care, is calling it quits.


REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: I have decided next year I will
not seek a fifth congressional term. Be assured, my decision was not in
any way influenced about any concerns of my being re-elected to Congress.


SHARPTON: It is a stunning fall for the woman who became the public
face of the tea party. And a real contender the GOP presidential
nomination. By July 2011, she was number one in the polls in the GOP
primary. And later that summer, she actually won the Iowa straw poll. It
was a wild ride but through it all, one thing stayed the same, Bachmann
never stopped embarrassing herself and her party.


BACHMANN: I wish the American media would take a great look at the
views of the people in Congress and find out, are they pro-America or anti-

I think before his second term is over, we are going to see a miracle
before our eyes. I believe God is going to answer our prayers and we will
be freed from the yoke of Obama care.

Let`s repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills
children, kills senior citizens. Let`s not do that.

If you are involved in the gay and lesbian lifestyle, it`s bondage.
It is personal bondage, personal despair and personal enslavement.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Does it strike you as the unemployment
rate goes up, your chances of winning office also go up?

BACHMANN: Well, that could be. Again, I hope so.

I haven`t had gaffe or something that I have done that has caused me
to fall in the polls.

Self-reliance means if anyone should not work, neither should he eat.

The president does not want to have to be confronted with priority in
spending because he has a lot of chutzpah.

This is just about waving a tar baby in here. It is saying that
something else is the problem. I have never seen a more irresponsible
president who is infantile.


SHARPTON: Bachmann got famous for trying to bash this president. But
in the end, she did most of the damage to herself. Remember how she
delivered the tea party state of the union response while appearing to look
somewhere off camera, somewhere into out of space?

Remember the Newsweek we covered, capturing a wild eyes, gazing off
into the distance. She paid the political prize for extremism. Before
dropping out, Bachmann`s reelection campaign was struggling. Recent polls
have shown her trailing and she was literally running away from questions
about ethics scandals. But Bachmann insists those investigations have
nothing to do with her decisions.


BACHMANN: Rest assured, this decision was not impacted in any way by
the recent inquiries into the activities of my former presidential campaign
or my former presidential staff.


SHARPTON: Bachmann says she is not going away entirely. That she is
still open to opportunities in the political arena. We can hardly wait.

Joining me now are Ed Rendell and Karen Finney. Thanks for coming on
the show.



SHARPTON: Governor Rendell, 100 years from now, take a visionary trip
with me. What will historians say about the Michele Bachmann era?

RENDELL: Well, I think she will be put in a group of people during
this era who were just haters, who pleaded hate and discontent and tried to
separate the American people into groups, into crowd, to create graft of
citizens on one group and another. I think she was a very destructive
force. And I think she will be grouped with a lot of people in that
grouping and I think she will just be a footnote. Probably her greatest
legacy is trying to repeal Obama care in 38 times, a huge waste of time and
taxpayer money.

SHARPTON: You know, Karen, when you look at the fact that most, if
not all of the legislation she introduced didn`t pass, many of her efforts
rallying and those that are activists respect activism, even if it`s on the
other side but it really was around issues that had no longstanding and she
really more than anything else bashed this president over and over again.


SHARPTON: Let me give you some of her favorite targets, including
when the president was won.


RENDELL: The president of the United States is threatened by my
candidacy. He fears me.

He is back from the 1970s that the swine flu broke out in then under
another Democrats president, Jimmy Carter, and I`m not blaming this on
President Obama. I just think it`s an interesting coincidence.

The president of the United States effectively become a health care

With your help, we will make Barack Obama a one-term president!


SHARPTON: Well, that didn`t work out too well for her. But aside
from that, she was equally infamous for getting all her facts wrong. Watch

FINNEY: Right.


BACHMANN: But we also know that the very founders that wrote those
documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States.

Here in New Hampshire, what you have done is nothing short of
remarkable and the shot that was heard around the world that conquered --

-- by a mother last night come up to me here in Tampa, Florida after
the debate. She told me that her little daughter took that vaccine, that
injection, and she suffered from mental retardation thereafter.

SHARPTON: I mean, how do you build a legacy after that, Karen?

FINNEY: Well, I think that speaks for herself. She will be infamous
in some ways. But, you know, I think she also represents what Bob Dole was
talking about over the weekend in terms of a Republican Party that is
devoid of ideas.

I mean, nothing of what you just showed, and really I can`t think of
one idea that Michele Bachmann had on her owned that wasn`t about hate or
wasn`t about being against something else, not a positive, proactive idea.
That is how she tried to build her career. That is how she built her

I hope that what this is signal for is that there is a limit, even in
a very Republican district, to how much people will take and look at how
hard this race was going to be for her. I hope that`s a sign that, you
know, at some point voters say, you know what, time out, enough is enough.
We don`t want to be the butt of jokes anymore. We don`t want to be
embarrassed by her gaffes anymore, and we don`t want to be represented by
somebody that is not willing to get things done.

SHARPTON: Now governor, I don`t want and shows this on the show.
Bachmann has a bigger picture here and that is that in my lifetime I have
seen the cold water Republican when I was a pre-teenage, when I was a kid,
all the way to Reagan Republicans, all the way to George Bush. We have
seen the what we call the Rockefeller Republicans.

Is Michele Bachmann representative of the decay of the Republican
Party, as we know it, with the right wingers have just been totally
obsessed with just trying to tear down this president? It is all around a
personality more than a philosophy because they haven`t really achieved
anything, it`s been basically the demonizing of Barack Obama as president.

RENDELL: Well, I agree. And first, I want to say that I have totally
forgotten the swine flu comment. It was stunning to hear it again. But, I
think Karen is exactly right and you are exactly right. If you look at go
(INAUDIBLE), he stood for something. And it was something that wasn`t
distrustful and it wasn`t hateful.

Ronald Reagan, we may disagree with him, but he stood for something
and it wasn`t distrustful and it wasn`t hateful. And George W. Bush was
never a hateful person. He never was a hateful person. This Republican
Party, which is embodied by Michele Bachmann, as you said, she wasn`t a
joke. She was the head of the Republican polls. She won the Iowa straw
vote. She was not an insignificant figure in the party. And it was just
full of just negativism and hate and it was directed at President Obama and
he was the easy target for them. But President Obama could do no right in
their eyes, even when he led and authorized the raid that killed bin Laden,
there was praise for the SEAL team, there was praise for this, there was
praise for that, there wasn`t praise for the president who have the guts to
authorized a mission that, had it failed, it would have been a major

So, Karen is exactly right. They represent nothing but destruction,
nothing but negativism, no hope, no idealism. And that`s why I think they
are coming to stand for it. And that is the reason, the (INAUDIBLE) is
turning, slowly, but the warn is turning.

SHARPTON: Yes. You know, Karen, when you look at the fact, look at
her as a lawmaker, very, very thin record. Sends he in Congress in 2004,
she sponsored 58 bills, got one bill voted on, just one. Three resolutions
agreed to. She has got zero bills passed into law.

Now, if I`m in her district, that would concern me. But if you are
the leader of a movement, shouldn`t you have tangible results? Whether I
agree with them or not to say this is what this movement represented?

FINNEY: Sure. And ideas, right? I mean, I think even one of the
bills that she introduced was again, repealing Obama care. That`s not a
fresh idea. That is not moving anything forward and that certainly is not
something that says, hey, let me take a look at what problems are out there
and how do we solve those problems? So, yes, I mean, as I say, I hope that
part of what this represents, and the positive that can come out of this, I
know a lot of late-night comedy writers are heartbroken not to have her on
the national scene anymore, but I really do hope that to some degree we
take a look at this and say, you know what, there is a Republican taking a
look at a distance and say, it`s not going to work. And perhaps it`s a
sign that you know, the tea party, because they hadn`t really come forward
with ideas, you know, what -- to the rest of the Republican Party, I kind
of want to say, well, what have you been so afraid of? Go ahead and put
some ideas out there. Stop cowering in a corner because you are afraid of
the tea party folks. You had a Republican district, you know, was about,
that was basically poised to reject the top tea partyier (ph). So, come on
with some ideas.

SHARPTON: I`m going to have to hold it there. Ed Rendell and Karen
Finney, thank you for your time tonight.

RENDELL: Thank you for tanking us down memory lane, Rev.

SHARPTON: We have some breaking news to report tonight that may end a
cake, a disturbing turn in the debate over gun control. The FBI reports
that New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg received threatening letters in
the mail that some have tested positive for the toxic substance ricin. The
letters sent to Bloomberg in New York and mayors against illegal guns in
Washington refer to mayor Bloomberg`s support for gun control.

Members of the NYPD emergency service unit who came in contact with
one letter of being examined for symptoms of ricin exposure that they
experienced over the weekend. The FBI and police are investigating the
threats. We will keep you posted on any developments.


SHARPTON: Have you joined the "Politics Nation" conversation on
facebook yet? Today, had everyone saying something about Michele
Bachmann`s decision not to run for Congress again.

Kelvin says, at least we won`t hear any more about her repeals on
Obama care.

Nana says, one down, so many more obstructionists to go.

Barry says, I wonder what new person the tea party will use to try to
replace her.

Good question. It is what we are talking about next with Bachmann
out, what happens to the tea party movement?

But first, we want to know what you think. Head over to facebook and
search "Politics Nation" and join us to join the conversation that keeps
going on long after the show ends.


SHARPTON: Tea party darling Michele Bachmann is out. After four
congressional terms, Bachmann joins a long list of tea party favorites who
stars burned bright and then burned out.


of the Democratic Party that are members o the Communal Party.


SHARPTON: Bye-bye Allen West, we hardly knew you.


blood every couple hundred years to preserve our basic freedoms.


SHARPTON: Sorry to see you go, Joe Walsh. Don`t let the door hit you
on the way out.


the female body has ways to shut that whole thing down.


SHARPTON: Well, I guess voters found a way to shut Todd Akin down.


government takeover not making insurance more available.


SHARPTON: Thanks for the memories, Jim DeMint. It is good to see you
put out the pasture.

But, the thing about the tea party is, it`s like a big game of whack a
mole. One goes down, another pops up. People like Marco Rubio, Rand Paul
and Ted Cruz are following in her footsteps. And even the GOP leader in
the senate, Mitch McConnell seems have ripped the page out of the Bachmann
play book with this new ad attacking the president.


allies have used the resource of the government itself to intimidate or
silence those questioned or oppose it.


SHARPTON: The tea party is not over by a long shot and voices like
Michele Bachmann keep dragging the Republican Party farther and farther to
the right.

Joining me now is Joy Reid and Ryan Grim. Thank you for being here



SHARPTON: Joy, are Bachmann`s -- are the people that follow her
paranoid? I mean, extreme politics basically the norm now call for the

REID: Yes. It is funny because when you were showing that list of
everybody that was gone, I was thinking, is that the new cap for Saturday
Night Live? It`s so much fun to listen to.

Yes. I mean, basically, Michel Bachmann was not the leader of it, but
she sort of try to glam on to this angry movement that suddenly decided,
they didn`t like bailouts anymore once Bush was gone and Barack Obama was
president and decided that suddenly didn`t like government spending and
government spending on social programs that a lot of them receive through
their Medicare because Barack Obama was there.

So this anti-Obama movement -- it was a real motivation. It is a
small govern, It is just they just don`t like Barack Obama. And when that
momentum sort of took the Republican Party by storm in 2010, it was the
answer that they have been waiting for to the grassroots of the Obama
movement and Michele Bachmann rode the wave and she rode it for a while,
but the problem is, her district, that weight has sort of crested and now
people are really not that into it. The district is less conservative so
she faced some tough times.

SHARPTON: And she was pretty close the last election.

REID: She came very close. I mean, she had to really sort of anchor
way back in her last reelection that (INAUDIBLE) tough times. And this
time, she has now at the ethics` issues, the FBI looking into her. But you
know what, if you look at where her tea party for profits have gone, I
guess her next route is about on FOX News.

SHARPTON: Well Ryan, let`s look at a bigger picture though. There`s
a new class of tea Partyiers (ph). Watch this.


SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: Ultimately, as Secretary Clinton runs
for office in the future, she is going to have to explain why, during her
helm at the state department, one of two things happen. Either, number
one, they were aware of a security situation in Libya and failed to act
accordingly or number two, they had such a bad operation that they were not
aware of it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Republican Party has been a party of civil
rights and voting rights.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think President Obama is the most radical
president that we have ever seen. But I think an awful lot of Republicans
failed to stand for principle and contributed to getting in this mess.


SHARPTON: So, you have the new class of tea Partyiers with the same
kind of far right rhetoric.

Ryan, are they going to be able to paint these pictures and get the
same kind of response that Bachmann and the 2010 Partyiers got, tea
Partyiers got?

GRIM: Well, I mean, there`s going to be, you know, as a vacuum now in
the crazy caucus, you know. Everyone in it has kind of step up a level of
seniorities. So, there is going to be -- and I`m serious, you are going to
see some jockeying for positioning within that far right. You know, people
are looking, OK, there is a lot more room on TV now. There is a lot more
room on the far right blogs for me to say stuff and get myself out there
and maybe develop that national following that will then funnel money into
my district which they can then spread around and that can help the power
within the move and even more.

You know, where Bachmann went wrong was running for president and
failing. You know, people in home districts don`t like it when people
don`t seem happy representing them. Like -- you know, take Chris Dodd, for
instance, when he basically moved to Iowa to run for president, his
popularity back in Connecticut sunk. Now, I`m not comparing Chris Dodd to
Michele Bachmann by any stretch --

SHARPTON: Yes, be careful. Be careful, Ryan.

GRIM: But voters don`t like it when you step too far out. And so, I
think that`s what ultimately did her in along with all the other insanity.

SHARPTON: But, when you look at the whole movement of the tea party,
it seemed like, as I was saying to Karen and to the governor last blot,
that they were more focused on demonizing the president than really any
kind of change, even change the right that you or I may disagree with, it
would just stop President Obama, repeal Obama care. They didn`t have a
health plan of their own.

REID: Right.

SHARPTON: Repeal Obama care. President Obama in his disguised blue.
It`s orange sky day. And I think that kind of runs his course since 2010
they dropped 24 points in the polls. A lot of it is because I think it was
just over and over and over they were just the anti-Obama people.

REID: You know, and so they don`t have a passive agenda and they are
just not passive. Look, people who are always angry and yelling and
dressing and you know, period costumes and marching around with Obama-
Hitler signs, that can run its course. You know, it is great theater for a
while, but then, at some point you have to have an agenda.

And look, the reality is, the tea party masks the fact that there`s a
huge rift in the Republican Party. They were able to unite around
disliking and despising Barack Obama. But, when you look beneath the
surface, there is some real differences between them. You have the
evangelical group that says no, we want to mitigate social issues only.
That`s why you have the Todd Akin.

You have got the economic conservatives who are well-off themselves.
They are like, get rid of Social Security and Medicare. That`s our agenda.
You have people who are just, you know, focused on ripping away programs
for the poor.

So, they have all got their owned sort of agenda and then you got the
Wall Street guys who really run the party who are saying no, no, we are
going to give you Mitt Romney. And all of that gets masked because they
all know that they only agree on one thing, we don`t like Barack Obama.

So, that kind of helped the up until now. Can they carry that forward
to 2014 and 2016? I think it`s doubtful and you are going to just see the
rifts start to reopen.

SHARPTON: Now Ryan, let me ask you this. If there is an opening for
somebody to come as you call it in the crazy caucus, in that opening, is
there anything that the president or the Democrats can do that could
further neutralize their effect?

GRIM: No. I think that they are doing a good job of neutralizing
themselves. Because there is this conflict that they have with reality,
basically. Now, Rendell had, you know, talked about some earlier
Republicans and even going back to Joe McCarthy at the beginning. You
know, he went crazy towards the end of his life. But in the beginning, he
was mean-spirited, he was hateful, but there actually were some communists
in this country and some of them worked in the government.

Now, whether or not they were actually going to actually overthrow it,
of course, they were not. But there were some actual people at the FBI
concerned about who are in the government. When it comes to Michele
Bachmann and a lot of her conspiracy theories, there isn`t anyone anywhere
who can even provide a shred of evidence to back any of it up. So, you
know, that just doesn`t last. You know, that gets exposed to the sunshine
and it dies.

SHARPTON: Yes. Well, I don`t know if I agree with you, that Jill
McCarthy wasn`t crazy earlier. But, I will agree with you, he did at least
have a conspiracy theory. You couldn`t find a thread in Michele Bachmann.
It just jumped all over the place.

GRIM: Sure. I did think he was crazy early. He was also crazy
early. But you are right. There was some kernel of truth to it.

SHARPTON: And there was some consistency in what you and I may think
is a little crazy.

GRIM: Yes.

SHARPTON: Joy Reid and Ryan Grim, thank you for your time again.

REID: Thanks, Rev.

SHARPTON: Still ahead, the big story about the Obama presidency that
Republicans are afraid to talk about.

But first, Glenn Beck has a new conspiracy theory to explain his
conspiracy theories. You want to see this one.

And I want to hear from you. Ask askrev@MSNBC.com. I`m answering
tonight. Stay right here.


SHARPTON: Glenn Beck has it all figured out. He knows what is really
going on. Mr. Beck now says there is a media conspiracy to portray him as
a conspiracy theorist.


GLENN BECK, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: The media has a story line and an
agenda, and they will get to it. Currently the story line is conspiracy
theorist. Why is it a concentrated effort, more than any other time in my
career, why is it a concentrated effort now to label me a conspiracy


SHARPTON: Glenn Beck as a conspiracy theorist? That`s crazy talk.
How did we ever get that idea?


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Should the pictures be revealed?


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: How do we know Bin Laden is dead?

BECK: You don`t. They are trying to recreate the Arab Spring here in
America. This spring. And it starts in about a week. And gang, it`s
going to get bad.

We have been sold to radical Islam.

I have the smoking gun. I have it right here.

If the president wins, I don`t know how we survive. I will tell you,
last week we purchased more farmland as a family. May I recommend, if you
have a chance to buy farmland, you buy farmland.


SHARPTON: Buy farmland because the president won and we`ve been sold
to radical Islam and we may not survive. Now, that`s really out there.
But Beck has made himself rich by saying the most offensive claims about
this president.


BECK: We`ve been lied to about everything about this president.
There`s no way he doesn`t understand Islam. There`s no way that he doesn`t
understand who the Muslim brotherhood is.

How many times do we have to find the Marxist, the communist, the
socialist, a revolutionary, or what seems amazing to me, a simple anti-
capitalist, near or around or advising the president.

This president I think has exposed himself as a guy over and over and
over again who has a deep-seeded hatred for white people or the white
culture. I don`t know what it is.


SHARPTON: Glenn Beck may be laughable but what he`s doing to the
national conversation is not funny. Right wing lawmakers actually listen
to him. We`ve seen Beck`s theories go from his show to the halls of

Did Beck think that we`d let his latest bogus conspiracy go unnoticed?
Nice try but we got you.


SHARPTON: Inside the beltway and over on the right-wing TV shows, all
you hear is scandal, scandal, and more scandal. But when you look around,
here`s what`s really happening. Housing prices just sparked higher than
they have in seven years. Consumer confidence in a five-year high this
month. More Americans are optimistic about jobs and the economy. And I
wonder how that socialist president is doing.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Another day, another record for the Dow.


SHARPTON: Worst socialist ever. I guess all of those right wingers
who blamed the president in 2009 for the Dow dropping should be praising
him now, right? Still waiting, Rush. So does anyone have any other


are continuing to ask the question, where are the jobs?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Where are the jobs? Where is the economic growth?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Where are the jobs?

BOEHNER: Millions of Americans still asking the question, where are
the jobs.


SHARPTON: So glad you asked. Here they are. The job market was in
free fall under Bush. Now we have 38 straight months of private sector job
growth under President Obama. So this is why we keep hearing the nonsense
from the right. Things are getting better and they can`t handle it.

Let`s bring in James Peterson and Peter Goodman. Thank you both for
being tonight.


SHARPTON: James, you can`t deny the economy is back. Here`s the
recent headline from "Forbes" magazine. "Economically, Could Obama be
America`s Best President?" What do you think?

JAMES PETERSON, LEHIGH UNIVERSITY: Well, when he`s one of only five
presidents to double the stock market over the course of his tenure and
obviously, when you think about the place that we were in the recession
that he`s pulling us out of, his marks are fairly high here. As you
mentioned, Rev, housing surged, unemployment still ticking down, stock
markets at record highs.

I mean, obviously, we want to keep our attention on this, not just
because of President Obama`s success but to make sure that the economy
becomes whole for everyone, for poor folk, for people of color, make sure
those things work for everybody in American. But at the end of the day,
it`s very, very difficult to argue with President Obama`s value in terms of
Wall Street and bringing the economy back from the brink.

SHARPTON: The numbers speak for themselves, Peter, and James is
correct, it is not equal cause in poor areas and in areas in African-
American, Latino, we are still disproportionate. But if we cannot continue
where he`s going, those areas will not get relief and the president is
focused on what he`s doing. Listen to this.


PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: My job as president is to
advocate for policies that generate more opportunity for everybody,
policies that strengthen the middle class and give more people the chance
to climb their way in to the middle class. Policies that create more good
jobs and reduce poverty and educate more children and give more families
the security of health care and protect more of our children from the
horrors of gun violence. That`s my job. Those are matters of public
policy and it is important for all of us, black, white, and brown to
advocate for America where everybody`s got a fair shot in life, not just
some, not just a few.



SHARPTON: Now that`s the president at Morehouse College last Sunday
in the middle of all of these scandals, talking about the policies, talking
about we need to create jobs.


SHARPTON: Talking about we need to move forward to those students in

GOODMAN: I think the real scandal is he`s the only one who seems to
be talking about jobs. I mean, most of Congress is now consumed with one
scandal or another, mostly GOP-driven scandals designed to mask the real
problems that we`re facing because, you know, the real scandal is the
longest running scandal, which is GOP obstructionism doubling down or
trying to actually monkey wrench any somewhat of a recovery. So you can
blame the guy in office, so you hope that you pick up votes in the

I mean, the economy is not a healthy economy. There are a lot of
problems in this economy. As the president pointed out on his State of
Union, you have a lot of people who are working who poor, you have a lot of
people who are unemployed and have been unemployed for months and months at
a time. But this is something that he has actively tried to address in his
presidency and he has met time and time again with obstructionism from the
people who are now running around fear mongering and scandal mongering.

SHARPTON: But James, help me out. I read a lot. I go through
everything. I search the internet three or four times a day, read all of
the papers. Do the Republicans have a jobs plan?

PETERSON: No, they do not. And Rev, imagine what this recovery, how
much more robust this economy would be without sequestration, without
obstructionism if the Republicans was seriously considered the president`s
jobs bill, which is on the table, which does sort of feed infrastructure
spending. And think of this, the government has been shrinking, Rev. The
government has been shedding jobs at this particular moment. Imagine if
the government were still hiring teachers, hiring policemen, hiring
construction workers to work on infrastructure. Imagine how much more
robust this recovery could be without the obstructionism from the right.

SHARPTON: Now, he raises are good point, Peter because, let`s look at
the unemployment rate. Back before the 2010 midterms.


SHARPTON: .we were at 10 percent unemployment.


SHARPTON: Now we`re at 7.5. I mean clearly we had to deal with areas
where it`s higher but we are going, I mean, really strongly in the right
direction. What can happen if this continues in the 2014 midterm?

GOODMAN: Well, ideally what happens is housing prices continue to
rise because people feel comfortable to take on a little debt because they
are working and they feel more secure in this job market than they did a
year ago or two years ago and that money gets cycled through the economy
and people decide to fix up their Porsche that they`ve putting off for few
years while they`ve been worrying about losing their house to foreclosure.

And they hire a carpenter, they hire a contractor. That contractor
goes out and spent that money in the local community and eventually tax
coffers get thrown out so we can hire firemen and policemen and teachers
and we get back to somewhat of a normal economy. We`re a long way from
there but we are moving in the right direction and it`s important to focus
on that.

SHARPTON: James, is that the reason, because the president has been
so focused and because things are moving in the right direction, that with
all of the these scandals, his popularity remains high, still 53 percent in
the polls, in the middle of all of this stuff they are throwing at him?

PETERSON: It`s that but it`s also the fact that -- it`s the
transparency of those sort of scandals not really being the scandals that
people are chumping (ph) them up to be. But remember, in 2010,
unemployment was at 9.5 percent. So, these midterm elections that were
looking at right now with unemployment hovering around seven, seven-and-a-
half percent, will be completely different. Yes, people do -- economic is
a behavioral science, Rev. People will respond differently to politics
based upon the economic condition of this nation.

SHARPTON: James Peterson and Peter Goodman, thank you both for your
time tonight.

GOODMAN: Thanks very much.

PETERSON: Thanks, Rev.

SHARPTON: Ahead, Bachmann is gone but today they are still trying to
repeal Obamacare. This is about people, not politics. We`ll tell you how
this show is getting active to help Americans in need.

And the e-mails are rolling in. I`ve got my computer up and I want to
hear from you. The answers are coming up.


SHARPTON: I`ve been very critical of Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell
but today I`m commending him. He unveiled a new plan to restore voting
rights to nonviolent felons, people who completed their sentences will no
longer need to fill out an application to vote. Virginia`s one of four
states that don`t automatically restore voting rights to felons once
they`ve paid their debt to society. To this point, McDonnell restored 4800
former felons voting rights out of 350,000.

But under this executive action, thousands could be cleared to vote by
November. This is on the right collar now. Governor, way to go. It`s
time to get rid of these -- voting laws, while you`re at it, the ones you
signed. Remember, Governor, since we`re on speaking terms now, voting is a
right, not a privilege.


REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: We`re not giving up until we
full square will repeal this bill.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We either repeal and replace Obamacare.

BOEHNER: I want to repeal the law of the land. Is that clear?

BACHMANN: This issue is now revived. It is back on the table.


SHARPTON: Repeal, repeal, repeal. Michele Bachmann`s leaving out but
others are keeping that drumbeat going today.


SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: So the only answer to this is to
repeal the Obamacare and the months to come I`m really going to focus on
the issue of repealing Obamacare because in addition to the IRS rolls,
there are all sorts of other problems with regards to Obamacare that we
need to answer.


SHARPTON: OK, time out Senator Rubio, the health care law is working.
California just announced the cost of the health insurance under the state
insurance exchange and the prices are good. But republican governors still
want to block it. Nineteen states oppose expanded Medicaid. They are
blocking people that needed most. That`s why we`re proud to sponsor a feel
health clinic, a free health care in New Orleans on July 3rd with a
National Association of Free Clinics because while Republicans drag their
feet and yell repeal, real Americans need help.

Let`s bring in Dr. Rani Whitfield also known as tha hip hop doctor,
he`s the associate medical director of the National Association of Free
Clinics in New Orleans. Dr. Whitfield, thanks for being here.

DR. RANI WHITFIELD, THA HIP HOP DOC: No, thank you, Reverend Al.
This is a very important issue and we appreciate all you are doing for us
down here.

SHARPTON: Not a big news today is Michele Bachmann won`t run for re-

WHITFIELD: Thank you.

SHARPTON: .but a fight to repeal Obamacare continues with Republicans.
As a doctor, what do you make of that?

WHITFIELD: I think it`s a waste of time, Reverend Al. I mean, it is
law now. So, instead of us focusing on things that we can`t change, let`s
do things that we can`t change. I mean, I`m in a state that has one of the
highest uninsured rates in the country. One out of four Louisiana do not
have insurance but they are working poor. And so, we`ve got to help this
people. People are dying largely from preventable and treatable diseases.

So, I`m not worried about that. I`m focused on taking care of
patients and find a ways that we can improve the health of our nation. And
that`s what most important. So, these guys that are continuing to bicker
on about things that we can`t change, it`s a waste of time, they are
wasting time and wasting taxpayer dollars.

SHARPTON: Now, you mentioned, you`re a doctor there in Louisiana
where your Governor Bobby Jindal opposed the Medicaid expansion. It would
ensure 214,000 more people in Louisiana and we`ll give the state nearly $16
billion. How can he be against this?

WHITFIELD: Right. I don`t know. He`s been very adamant about that.
He`s not going to pass that bill. And that`s why I`m so proud to be a part
of the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics. We`re going to
be able to provide health care, the safety net. While these politicians
continue to bicker and fuss and fight about what they want to do or what
they not going to support, we are able to provide health care free of
charge, you know, some things in life for free. And on July 3rd, you`ll
see that, Reverend Al.

You`ll be down here in full effect. It`s the largest health center in
the world. We have 60 offices or more. A big health clinic, we`re
providing HIV testing, referral for mammograms, health centers, primacy
care services, not everybody that comes as sick that we will connect them
with outlying services and communities so that ongoing care can continue.
We don`t have time to waste.


WHITFIELD: People are dying. So, we have to do something about this.

SHARPTON: Now, let`s get into a clinic for a second. You`ve worked
at four of these free clinics in New Orleans. What kind of problems do you
diagnose and treat there in the clinics?

WHITFIELD: Hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, a lot of male
health issues. And at the very first clinic, some patients have not been
seen in two to three years, actually, five years in some cases. Didn`t
have medicines, didn`t have refills. So, this is a life changing thing.
Reverend Al, the volunteers are wonderful. I can`t thank them enough for
what they do more. And that`s why we`re so appreciative of what you`re
doing, we do need more volunteers and we`re going to need patients that we
can treat.

SHARPTON: So, let me as you this because I want to put this out
there. Because I think a lot of people had the idea that people who are
uninsured are not working. And I`m heard you mention working people. Tell
us about that. Because it`s not true that people who are uninsured are
just lazy and not working.

WHITFIELD: That is not the case at all, Reverend Al. Many of the
patients that I see are employed but they are not able to afford insurances
or the small businesses that they work for cannot afford to provide
insurance to them. So, the individuals are still working but there is a
direct correlation Reverend between being uninsured and poor health
outcomes. But do you pay for foods and pay your bills or do you try to pay
for health insurance?

So, that`s the choice that many Americans have to make today. And so,
we need to provide them resources and that`s where the free and charitable
clinics come in. There are 1200 clinics across this country. We will have
the largest clinic in the world on July 3rd here in New Orleans and we need
people to come out and support, we need donations so we can continue these
events and we need more volunteers.

SHARPTON: Now, what do patients tell you at these clinics?

WHITFIELD: From thank you to -- help? Probably one of the most
interesting cases that I had is a patient that now drive from New Orleans -
- about 45 to 50 minutes from New Orleans because they liked me. They
drive from New Orleans to continue their health care and they don`t have
insurance to this day. We`ve had people come from different cities from
Houston, Texas, four-and-a-half hour drive to get health care in New
Orleans because they`ve seen your show, they`ve seen other people talked
about the National Association of Free Clinics.

We`ve diagnosed breast cancer, we`ve had hypertensive urgency where
people had to be rest to the emergency room, so we see a lot of things, the
providers are great, the camaraderie is amazing. And it`s a wonderful
event, I mean, we`re tired by the end of the day but I would do it again
over and over again because again, we are saving lives and helping

SHARPTON: Dr. Rani Whitfield, thank you for your time and we really
look forward to seeing you on July 3rd.

WHITFIELD: Thank you, Reverend Al. I can`t wait.

SHARPTON: Folks, please be part of this clinic in New Orleans on July
3rd. We`ll do the show live from the clinic but we need your help. Many
people say to me all over the country, what can I do to help? You need to
take this opportunity where people have stepped out and have put themselves
on the line to provide free health care, to people who are not lazy, who
are not doing nothing, who are not beggars, but just need help.

Whatever you can do, whatever you can donate, we cannot live in a
country where Americans who just don`t make enough to insure themselves
suffer from diseases can depend on other Americans to say we are a nation
that helps each other. I want you to help, fellow Americans. This is
beyond politics. This is beyond ideology. This is beyond religion. This
is looking in a mirror saying, I am doing something to help. Somebody in
need. That is who I am. That`s the kind of person I want to be.

To donate, you can find all of the information on our web site,
urgentcare.msnbc.com or visit the National Associate of Free Clinics site.
NAFCCLINICS.ORG. Be the person you really want to be. Give.


SHARPTON: It`s time to ask Rev. Remember, friend or foe, I want to

Vernon asks, "Reverend Al, does John Boehner think that just because
he mentions the word jobs, we`re fooled to thinking that Republicans are
doing anything about jobs? We`ve got you Boehner."

Oh, glad you like my expression, we got you. But you`re right. Where
is the plan? Where is the Boehner`s job plan? I think we can be fooled.
We must see a plan and we must see how they deliver it.

Bill asked, "I`m a 54-year-old white male. How can I get involved in
community activism like you? Something other than giving cash. I`m
disabled and only have a small monthly income."

Give by volunteering. Find something in your community that you can
volunteer. I have people that come to our offices around the country and
National Action Network does disable but can help in the offices. They can
help counsel, they can help do work that is just about them being there and
trying to put their best effort forward. It`s not just cash, it`s getting
job done for people that don`t have others that are concerned about them.
It`s about all of us understanding we need the rest of us.

Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. "HARDBALL" starts right now.


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