THE ED SHOW
March 25, 2014
Guest: Debbie Wassserman Schultz, Connie Schultz, Annette Taddeo, Bernie
Sanders, Irina Vilarino, Dwight Bullard
ED SCHULTZ, MSNBC HOST: Good evening Americans and welcome to the Ed Show
live from New York. Let`s get to work.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JOHN BOEHNER, (R-OH) HOUSE SPEAKER: Good morning everyone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wake up. Wake up, wake up, wake up.
REP. MARCIA FUDGE, (D) OHIO: Each week, we fail to act another 72,000
people lose their benefits.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You wake up, you wake up, you wake up, you wake.
NANCY PELOSI, HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: These families are in danger of now
losing their homes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People are living on the brink of financial disaster
because of these games.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There`s a reason that we have seen long term
unemployed in this country nearly doubled.
BOEHNER: I can tell you all about the back of the president`s head. You
just sit there and look right out.
PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN, ACTOR: This is absurd. Do you know what absurd
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: House Speaker Boehner signaled no eagerness take up the
PELOSI: Because of the extreme nature, the indifference of the Republican
BOEHNER: I don`t see how it works.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight folks. Thanks for watching.
How many times have you heard the saying "Life isn`t fair?" Just isn`t
fair. I bet watching the basketball tournament you were thinking. "Yeah,
they didn`t call a foul on that. Wait, that`s not right." You know what?
There`s a lot of things in life that aren`t fair. These guys haven`t been
fair to the American people and this isn`t a game we`re talking about
Today on the radio, it`s like I took a number of phone calls with people I
thought I was almost the counselors by these Democrats that are all uptight
about the fact that Nate Silver came out with a prediction. He`s a numbers
guy. I got nothing against Nate Silver on what he says but it`s the gut
check. It`s like it`s late in the game and there`s going to be a gut
check. That`s what the midterms are going to be all about. It`s going to
be about the economy.
I have always been a believer that Americans, we as Americans, we`re pretty
sensitive people. We have a pretty good sense of fair play. We don`t like
it when people get shafted. We`ve just never been a country like that. We
like to see our neighbor do well. We`d like to see the folks down the
street, do well, and it`s just fun to see people that you know get a good
shot and something good happen to him. It`s going to be about you and
your. That`s what this elections going to be about. What does it mean to
and what does it mean to your family.
Now, tonight, we`re going to talk about long-term unemployment. It`s not
in the headlines everyday, it gets talked about every now and then, but
here`s what`s happening. I think the Republicans, this crowd behind me.
They are making a real, real, miscalculation on what the gut check is to
the American people. That`s what I believe. I don`t have any stats to
back it up, but I`ve been up and about and talk to enough people to believe
that that Republicans as they continue to turn their backs on the
unemployed Americans across America coming up with excuse after excuse,
they are making a serious miscalculations.
Republicans need to remember, this isn`t a game. They`re hurting people.
In fact, this guy right here, something`s wrong with America. One guy
shouldn`t have that much power. The long-term unemployed folks don`t want
to hear the rhetoric about offsets. They got bills to pay. They may lose
their homes as Nancy Pelosi said. They need a check to survive. That`s
where it is for millions of Americans. I know the stock market is doing
good. I know we`ve added eight million jobs, almost 50 months of private
sector job growth. But where did we start and where are we now? And the
outsourcing continues and the corporate profits are through the roof. You
mean to tell me we can`t find any resource at all to deal with long-term
Now, let`s go to the numbers. After Congress failed to act 1.3 million
Americans, this was the story back over the holidays, remember that? Home
for the holidays. People lost their long-term unemployment benefits.
Americans lost their insurance on December 28th. That was the first time.
And we said that it`s going to get worse. But wait a minute, we were told
back then to trust the crowd that I just showed you that they were going to
come back in January and they were going to do something about this. It
turns out it wasn`t even on their agenda list.
Well, by February 12, the number had jumped to 1.7 million. Gosh, another
almost to half a million people were affected by this. Today, that number
is up to 2.2 million. It`s getting worse. You think their feeling good
about things? You think that America is being fair to them? You think
they feel real good?
By the end of this year, 2014, it`s expected that we could be looking at
over five million people if the Congress doesn`t act. The Congress that
loves to play golf, the Congress that doesn`t do much, the Congress that
has been the least productive Congress in years. What about these folks?
Republicans could care less about this chart or any other number when it
comes to helping Americans. Now, two weeks ago, the Senate put forward a
bill to extend unemployment insurance. Harry Reid has a pulse. He
couldn`t find anybody on the other side to help out.
Earlier today, House Republicans made it clear that they have no plans
whatsoever to extend unemployment benefits. Eric Cantor had the nerve to
come out and talk about families struggling to heat their homes.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ERIC CANTOR., (R) MAJORITY LEADER: As much of a country is seeing
snow pile up today, we`re reminded of a home heating bills piling up in the
kitchen tables during this cold winter.
Now, two weeks ago, we in the House passed several bipartisan bills aimed
at lowering cost for working middle class families and increasing jobs.
America is not working when President Obama is seeking to closed coal power
plant causing home heating cost to rise and jobs to be lost
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Can you believe that? You know what he`s talking about?
Deregulation. This is the problem. We`re going to have five million
people by the end of this year, but you know what? We got to protect the
This guy ought to be ashamed of himself. The bills he`s talking about
would protect the coal industry from further regulation. And we all know
how clean coal is.
Cantor wants to protect the most egregious coal companies. How about Duke
Energy? Yeah. Duke Energy, remember them? This month, Duke Energy
intentionally dumped 61 million gallons of toxic coal ash into the North
Carolina Cape Fear River. Just real good citizens.
Now, the company used pumps, actual pumps to move toxic ash from a holding
pool and place it in the river. Now, the Cape Fear River provides drinking
water which I think people in several cities in towns of North Dakota --
North Carolina actually like.
Well, you see, in the last month, this company, this company has been
accused of violating environmental rules eight times. These are Cantor`s
buddies. Cantor`s idea of lower energy cost for those who are worried
about heating their home and job creation is protecting companies like Duke
Energy. You heard the sound bite. I didn`t make it up. That`s exactly
what he said today. He could care less about the unemployed in this
country. Republicans are wasting time and money going around protecting
coal fired plants. We just don`t have enough of them. In fact, if we
deregulate more, hell, we`ll have fewer unemployed people. Nothing about
They need to protect the 2.2 million Americans who are out of work right
now and throw them a lifeline so they can pay the bills.
House Speaker John Boehner confirmed today that he wants a paid for
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOEHNER: I told the President that I would consider this as long as it was
paid for and as long as there were provisions attached that would actually
help the economy and help people get back to work. Those conditions have
not been met.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: So we`ve got Cantor who wants to protect the corporations and of
course we want Boehner who wants lower taxes. That`s what he`s talking
Boehner has been saying the same thing since January. Unemployed Americans
don`t want to hear about offsets. They need a lifeline.
I think that refusing to extend unemployment really is a Republican effort
to stay in power. That`s all they care about staying in power.
They know if the unemployment check stopped, the economy is going to suffer
even more and they`re OK with that because don`t blame the Democrats.
A White House report shows that 240,000 jobs could be lost by the end of
this year by refusing to extend unemployment benefits. The CBO has
calculated. Without an extension, GDP will be up to 0.4 percent lower this
year. And this is the numbers. These are the numbers that the Republicans
want. This is what they think is going to be the ticket for them to not
only maintain power in the House and pick up seats but it`s also going to
get them the Senate.
I don`t think Americans are there. I think the fair -- the sense of fair
play and the sensitivity of our economy and those who are being cast aside,
I think that`s going to win out. These guys could care less about helping
the long-term unemployed.
Now, let`s go back to that chart of five million people if we can fellas.
We`ve shown you the numbers of where it started, there it went then no more
it`s 25th by the end of the year. Where are we going to be in November?
We`re going to be close to that five million mark. And if we have five
million people in this country who are long-term unemployed, you can count
on it, we`re going to have a housing problem in this country. People will
be losing their homes for closures will take place and we`ll be back to the
old headlines of 2009. There will be a ripple effect.
And what is so unfair about all of this is that this crowd, the
Republicans, will show the crew one more time, Gerrymandering has put them
in a position of power. They feel so emboldened by the way they have
socially engineered the election map that they can say no to Americans who
are struggling and get away with it.
To you folks who are on the radio today, if that doesn`t burn something in
your belly I don`t know what`s going to work. I really don`t.
This election, as the numbers continue on because they`re not going to do
anything to help the long-term unemployed. Ain`t going to happen. And we
shouldn`t have to have offsets because we`re not that kind of country. We
have a moral compass of helping people, our own neighbors, in time of need.
These are unusual circumstances. But they`re going to keep going and I
think this is a serious miscalculation and they`re showing the country that
they really have no moral fiber or backbone. They just couldn`t weather
the storm of helping five million people or doing a jobs bill which we
don`t have and we`re not going to have before the midterm.
So we don`t have a jobs bill, we don`t have long-term unemployment benefits
extended, we don`t have the minimum wage, we`re not going to get
immigration. You know what we`re all waiting for? We`re waiting for
November. They`re trying to run out the clock. They love watching the
tournament. They`ll count on the refs giving them the signal. This is how
America is running. This is your tax dollars right here. It may sound
partisan as I am quite often but this ain`t a Democratic problem folks.
Even smart people can figure this one out, right?
Get your cellphones out. I want to know what you think tonight`s question.
"Does John Boehner care more about keeping power or helping people?" Text
A for Keeping Power, text B for Helping People to 67622, you can always go
to our blog @ed.msnbc.com. We`ll bring you the results.
Again, just to be clear, this is a result of gerrymandering. There is no
political calculation. They know that they`re going to have the power in
the House and I say that one man shouldn`t have that much power but those
are the cards that are on the table and that`s the deck we got to play
For more, let me bring in Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida
who is the Chair of the DNC. Debbie, good to have you with us tonight. I
appreciate your time.
REP. DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ, (D-FL) DNC CHAIR: Great to be with you, Ed.
You`re welcome. Thank you.
SCHULTZ: What are House Democrats? What are the plans if this is going to
go all the way to November for five million people, what can be done?
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Well, look, you`re absolutely right, Ed. The
Republicans callously cut off unemployment insurance benefits for two
million people at the end of last year right in the midst of the holidays.
And, you know, beyond how callous and inhumane that was, it was also
pennywise and pound foolish. And let`s think about the group of people
that lost those benefits.
Beyond that, we are also -- we`re leaving them in much more significant
desperate financial straits than not having a job was to begin with. We
also know that when they have those benefits, they`re able to spend money,
they`re putting money out into the economy and we`re still, you know, in
the midst of a recovery which the Republicans by the way I think
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: . have put the brakes on so that we don`t have a more
robust recovery and then they can try to point fingers but the American
people are much smarter than that as you pointed out so many times and I
think they`ll see through it on into this election.
SCHULTZ: Congresswoman, what is your response to Eric Cantor talking about
the coal industry and backing off on regulations? And this is really what
it`s all about if we`re going to help the long-term unemployed. I mean,
that`s what I heard. Maybe you heard it differently.
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: You know, there`s no getting around that they have a
bipartisan agreement in the Senate to extend unemployment benefits for the
long-term unemployed. They passed in the Senate. And John Boehner and
Eric Cantor are refusing to extend those benefits, to make sure that we can
put those resources back into the economy because that money will be in
people`s pockets and they can spend it, and also to make sure that we can
help those people with a bridge that they need .
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: . while they`re struggling -- at the end of this
recovery period to find work. What Eric Cantor is clearly doing, as his
entire Republican conference is doing is protecting corporate special
SCHULTZ: That is the bottom line.
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: And they`re not focused on job creation.
SCHULTZ: Let`s talk about .
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: They`re focused on protecting big businesses.
SCHULTZ: They are. Finally, the Supreme Court started hearing arguments
today over companies saying that they don`t want to provide birth control
over religious beliefs. What`s your reaction to that?
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: You know, I think if you ask almost every woman in
America what their opinion was. It is not their boss` business what kind
of healthcare they choose to utilize, what kind of medication they take.
And when it comes to this Supreme Court case that a CEO of a corporation is
trying to decide for his female employees and impose his religious believes
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: . on his female employees and force them not to be able
to make a decision to use birth control. When 99 percent of women used
birth control in their lifetime and 60 percent use it for something other
than family planning, it`s outrageous and I think the Supreme Court will
suggest that their case is ridiculous.
SCHULTZ: Hobby Lobby asking the Supreme Court to discriminate against
women. How else can you read it?
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Yeah.
SCHULTZ: Congressman Debbie Wasserman Schultz .
WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: . appreciate your time tonight. If three Schultz`s can`t figure
it out, nobody can.
Let me bring in Syndicated Columnist, Connie Schultz tonight from Ohio.
Connie, great to have you with us, you have great .
CONNIE SCHULTZ, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Thank you.
E. SCHULTZ: . empathy for the American worker, you have for many years a
journalist. How are these 2.2 million Americans going to get through all
of these when the signal is very clear that Congress isn`t going to do
anything about this? The Republicans in Congress aren`t going to do about
C. SCHULTZ: Well, Ed as you know, I like to talk about the actual stories
of these people and this is despair by a thousand cuts, because first they
have to dip into their savings if they`re lucky to have had any. Then they
start having to pick between which bills they`re going to pay every month.
And overtime, they start to have to make decision like you talk to these
rescue groups for animals, for example pets, they`re giving up family pets.
Their children`s pets because they cant afford to feed them. They`re
having to decide whether to give anything for a child`s birthday.
That first that they get rid of the birthday parties, and then they get rid
of the birthday presents. And despair sets in and domestic violence
increases the incidents of it. And people start feeling they`re worthless.
I posted the question today on my public Facebook page just asking people
because I know so many of them have been out or work for a long time now.
And they really -- when you look at so many of the comments in the thread
that plays out what we know statically that this is affecting just
proportionately, people of color, people who are older, people who are in
blue collar jobs.
And when you contrast the really human suffering of good people who just
want to work to the members of the Congress -- Republican members and
specifically we must address that it is a partisan issue.
E. SCHULTZ: Yeah.
C. SCHULTZ: And they are making very good money. The have the Cadillac of
healthcare. They are applauded every time they get in front of a room and
open their mouths. They are no, you know, they feel their power every
single day. And yet they can`t bring themselves to champion regular people
over coal companies. When I heard Eric Cantor say that, I thought this
really comes down to, who are you fighting for? Not who am I against, it`s
who am I fighting for is the question each of them has to ask him or
I don`t know how people like Eric Cantor live with himself -- lives with
himself after giving that sort of answer in discussing the heating bills .
E. SCHULTZ: Totally .
C. SCHULTZ: . of Americans.
E. SCHULTZ: Totally disconnected. They are just totally -- they`re
callus. Totally disconnected and all they care about is being drunk with
power and keeping that power in the House. They are making a political
calculation that they will not be hurt by this and they`re just going to
grind it and blame it on the Democrats and blame it on President Obama.
What else could it be?
C. SCHULTZ: Well, when you`re despondent, when you don`t know how you`re
going to take care of your family, when you are worried about the car
breaking down and worried about losing your house, you don`t really care
much anymore about .
E. SCHULTZ: Yeah.
C. SCHULTZ: . who you`re going to vote for. And you probably not even
interested in showing up. And I`m afraid that`s what they`re counting on.
To spare benefits the Republicans.
E. SCHULTZ: Connie Schultz, great to have you with us tonight, I
appreciate your time so much. I appreciate it, thank you.
C. SCHULTZ: Thank you.
E. SCHULTZ: Coming up, President Obama proposes an end to the NSA bulk
phone record collection. Well, Senator Bernie Sanders gives us some
insight on all of that next.
And later, why Rick Scott`s top Latino fundraiser quit. Rapid Response
Panel weights in.
Stay with us, we`ll be right back.
SCHULTZ: Time now for the Trenders. What`s hot, what not. Social media
team join up, it`s the Ed Team. Facebook.com/EdShow, Twitter.com/EdShow
and ed.msnbc.com. Catch the radio show, Monday through Friday, noon to
three, Sirius XM Channel 127. And you can get my radio podcast at
Ed Show Social Media Nation has decided. We`re reporting here are today`s
top Trenders voted on by you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re going to talk about Johnny Manziel in a big play
SCHULTZ: The number three Trender, tall order.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Johnny Manziel measured in at 5`11`` and three quarters
just short of 6 feet.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you mean that little shorty?
JOHNNY MANZIEL, AMERICAN FOOTBALL QUARTERBACK: I play with a lot of heart.
I play with a lot of passion. I feel like play like I`m 10 feet tall.
SCHULTZ: Johnny Football takes critics to the House with his slam dunk
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Boom shakalaka. It`s about time (ph). He`s on fire.
SCHULTZ: The number two Trender, sky fall.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They went into the World Trade Center, they climbed to
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How did that happen? How did they get up there?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why don`t I take the stairs?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And they parachuted off.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Three, two, one, beautiful.
SCHULTZ: Three fly boys are grounded after base jumping off one world
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They are charged with burglary, reckless
endangerment, and jumping from a structure.
ANDREW ROSSIG, SKY DIVER: Our intent was never for this to go public.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The three men say, "It was exhilarating."
ROSSIG: Looking at the world from a different place, place that most
people don`t ever get to see.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Living the dream, dude.
SCHULTZ: And today`s top Trender, hung up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Obama will call for big changes at the
National Security Agency.
BARACK OBAMA, 44TH AND CURRENT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
I was assigning our various agencies and to bring me new options.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you hear me now?
OBAMA: They have presented me now with an option that I think is workable.
SCHULTZ: President Obama plans big changes for the NSA.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The White House wants the agency to stop collecting
and holding on to millions of American`s phone records.
OBAMA: This insures that the government is not in possession of that bulk
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You hung up first.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, you hung up first.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nothing is going to change until Congress weighs in.
OBAMA: I`m looking forward to working with Congress to make sure that we
go ahead and pass the enabling legislation quickly.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This legislation screams grand standing.
OBAMA: It allows us to do what is necessary in order to deal with the
dangers of a terrorist attack but does so in a way that it addresses some
of the concerns that people have raised.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Big issue.
Joining us tonight, Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont. Senator, good to
have with us. I guess the question is can the NSA continue to keep us safe
in this country with the information that we need to be safe if -- and
still operate the way they have been operating? What do you make all of
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, (I) VERMONT: Well, I think what the president is
doing is taking a step in the right direction but I think we need to go
further. And I voted against the USA Patriot Act and the reauthorization
of the Patriot Act because I worry very much about the overreach, not only
of the NSA but other intelligence agencies.
In my view, you`re not a free country when the federal government collects
every phone call made in this country, when the federal government gets
into some our e-mails, those and the websites that we visit has the
capability (ph) of going to a library and now the books that you took out,
that is not what freedom is about.
So I think what the President has proposed is a step in the right
direction. But I think we`ve got to go further than that.
SCHULTZ: Can we keep the country safe the way we used to have it before
the NSA and the Intel agencies did all the things you just described?
SANDERS: The answer is I believe that we can. The issue here, Ed, is it
is to my mind wrong and unconstitutional to collect information on every
phone call made in the America when 99.9999 percent that the American
people have nothing to do with terrorism. The kind of system that you want
is to say that if we know, if law enforcement or the intelligent agency has
reason to believe that somebody is involved in terrorist activity, maybe
involved, go after them, do an investigation, tap the phones, do everything
that you need to do to protect the American people.
But on the other hand, the overwhelming majority of the people have nothing
to do with terrorism. We should not be collecting their phone data or
getting into their e-mails.
SCHULTZ: And Senator, are you OK with collecting this phone data and the
way the operation of FISA court works right now? Agents go do what they
have to do when they have a certain amount time, they have to come back and
get it sign off by a judge so they don`t act like a rogue operation? Are
you OK with all that? Is that the way to do it?
SANDERS: Ed, what I`m not OK with is that the FISA court almost always
with very few exceptions allows the intelligence agencies and law
enforcement to do they what they want.
SCHULTZ: So it`s not really oversight?
SANDERS: It`s more of a rubber stamp is my perception.
SCHULTZ: OK. Well, senators like Rand Paul who have been critical to the
President over the NSA work with him to make these changes. I mean, there
are as some, you know, I guess libertarian is what they want to be called,
free thinkers whatever that had been very critical, but are these critical
voices going to come forward and speak up now?
SANDERS: Well, I would hope so. This actually is a moment when you will
have honest Conservatives whose main mantra is they don`t like the
government. Well, if you don`t like the government, if you`re an honest
Conservative, my God, you don`t want the federal government filing every
phone called in America or getting into our e-mails or into our websites.
So honest Conservatives who do believe in Constitutional Rights should be
working with Progressives who share that same value.
SCHULTZ: All right. Senator Bernie Sanders, thank you for you time
tonight. I appreciate it so much.
Coming up, a snag in Rick Scott`s effort to reach out the Hispanic voters
in Florida, Rapid Response Panel weighs in on that.
And later, the fight for public education. I sat down with a Florida state
senator and public school board teacher to find out how Florida`s charter
school system is hurting students.
But next, I`m taking your questions on Ask Ed live. Stay with us, we`ll be
right back on the Ed show on MSNBC.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show, love the questions Ask Ed segment.
First question comes tonight from Janet (ph), "Do you think Bernie Sanders
could win the 2016 Presidential nomination?"
Well, I think it would be a lofty goal, it could be done. Anything can
happen in politics. Go ask Hillary Clinton.
Our next question is from Aubra, she wants to know, "Do you think Democrats
will come out and vote in the midterms?"
Well, they better or they`re going to be living in a very different country
in a matter of days after the election.
Stick around Rapid Response Panel is next.
SEEMA MODY, CNBC CORRESPONDENT: I`m Seema Mody with your CNBC Market Wrap.
Stocks bounce back from two straight days of losses, thanks to positive
economic data. The Dow is up 91 points, the S and P 500 at 8, the NASDAQ
Consumer confidence jumped to a 60 or high this month feeding estimates.
Meanwhile, co-prices in most areas rose in January. They`re up more than
13 percent from year ago levels. However, new home sales fell more than 3
percent last month to the lowest levels since last September.
That`s it from CNBC, first in business worldwide.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Actually, 37 percent of Hispanics identify themselves
as conservatives. But if we don`t go into Hispanic communities on a year
on basis and explain what it is that we believe as a party, then those dots
can never be connected.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. The Republican Party is desperate
to make up ground with Hispanic voters. Their scripted Latino outreach
effort is on full display in the State of Florida, where Republican
Governor Rick Scott is up for reelection. In January, Scott chose Miami
Dade Official Carlos Lopez-Cantera as Lieutenant Governor for his running
mate. Lopez-Cantera would be the first Hispanic to hold office if the
ticket wins. Many see it as clearly a move to most to support of the
Hispanic voting community.
On Thursday, the Florida House passed a bill 81 to 33 which would give in-
state tuition rates to children of undocumented immigrants. Now, the
outreach effort hit a stag last Thursday with rumors of racism among
Scott`s campaign staff. The governor`s top fund raiser Cuban American
billionaire healthcare CEO Mike Fernandez resigned.
The Miami Herald reports of Fernandez send an e-mail to top Scott allies
complaining about two campaign aids joking in an insensitive cartoon-style
Mexican accent in route to a Mexican restaurant in Fernandez`s home town.
Scott`s campaign has denied the allegations. Scott`s campaign manager told
the Miami Herald, Mike was not in the van. I spoke to every staffer at the
van, if something was said in an accent, no one remembers what it was, we
are a diverse organization and we do not tolerate inappropriate comments.
So a lot going on in the race for the governor`s chair in Florida. Joining
me tonight for our Rapid Response Panel, Annette Taddeo, Chair of the Miami
Dade Democratic Party and Conservative business owner, Irina Vilarino with
us as well. Great to have both of you with us tonight, I appreciate it so
Annette, you first, why did Fernandez resign? Is there more to the story
or was it just an insensitive comment or an off call or email or whatever?
Is this the root of the story?
ANNETTE TADDEO, CHAIR, MIAMI-DADE DEMOCRATIC PARTY: I think so. I think
what`s really sad is that they`re now turning on their top fund raiser. I
mean, they`re actually saying that he`s lying. The Lieutenant Governor
went on a spree yesterday just telling everybody, all the reporters in
Florida, "Oh no, no, there`s no validity to these claims and all the
stuff". Now today, we find out that the e-mails are actually out and we
can see that he did send the e-mails, he did say it, and his partner was in
that van where all this stuff was said. This is Fernandez`s partner.
So, they`re caught in the lies which doesn`t surprise us because this is
part of Rick Scott constant deny, deny, deny and pretend like things never
happened. After all he did that in his business. So that`s -- this is
what I call "un problema grande" for Rick Scott.
SCHULTZ: Irina, is Rick Scott`s outreach to Hispanics and the Latino
community in trouble? How big of a set back is this if it all?
IRINA VILARINO, CONSERVATIVE BUSINESS OWNER: I don`t really think it is a
set back. I think that some people, you know, conduct themselves in
certain ways. I don`t think the governor can control how everybody reacts
or if there`s any type of insensitivity. I don`t think it has any calling
on his behavior or what he has done as a governor in the last four year. I
think when people go to the polls they`re going to think, "Am I better off
this last four years then when Charlie Crist left us to run in the Senate?"
SCHULTZ: And what do you make of Fernandez leaving? If he`s so loyal to
Rick Scott, why would he leave in such a critical time in at critical race?
VILARINO: Mr. Fernandez, as you said, he`s a billionaire. I think that
he`s mission to a certain degree has been accomplished. He raised over $35
million. I think he has a lot of substances things to do with his time.
If there was any insensibilities, I don`t think he or anybody else should
put up with it. And I`m sure he has plenty of other things to do with his
time. I think he showed his loyalty to the governor by raising $35
million. I think his work has been concluded and he is continuing to be
loyal to the governor. The governor obviously had his vote and is
continuing to conduct fund raisers for him here in South Florida. So I
don`t think that has any subsequent regards with .
VILARINO: . however the ...
TADDEO: I think .
VILARINO: . you know, the relationship is.
SCHULTZ: What do you think Annette?
TADDEO: Well, I think rather than, you know, the governor staff and the
Lieutenant Governor calling him in essence a liar is, you know, he should
be commended. He actually spoke up .
VILARINO: I think .
TADDEO: . wrote it in e-mail said, "This is not OK." And he actually said
the insensitivities to the Hispanic community are not OK. And he also said
that these people that come from other places think, you know, that they
know how to speak to the Hispanic community, obviously, they don`t. And he
said, after all, he`s made himself a billionaire by selling to Hispanic.
So, he knows a thing or two about Hispanics. So I think he was trying to
raise flags very rightly so.
TADDEO: And we should be aware of the fact the governor has not been a
good governor .
SCHULTZ: Irina, what about that?
TADDEO: . for Hispanics.
VILARINO: I think if Mr. Fernandez was annoyed, he has a right to
relinquish his post as a co-chair of a campaign fundraising. I think that
that has no indication as to how Mr. Rick Scott has dealt with Hispanics in
the State of Florida. I think that when the folks go to the polls, they`re
going take into account how the state has progress within the last four
years. And that`s mainly the main issue.
SCHULTZ: Well, Irina why is the ...
VILARINO: . as a Hispanic, I have .
SCHULTZ: Sure, go ahead.
VILARINO: I`m sorry. As a Hispanic, I haven`t felt any insensitivity from
my community or from my leaders. And you can`t base a person`s actions on
the entire Republican organization.
SCHULTZ: But it has taken .
VILARINO: That`s just absurd.
TADDEO: But that is .
SCHULTZ: Go ahead Annette.
TADDEO: I know, but that is the leader of the Republican Party in Florida.
He`s the governor and he actually has instead of saying, "This is not
right. We shouldn`t be making -- and you know, Mexican jokes at our
campaign. Fire those people and actually stand up for the Hispanic
community." But this shouldn`t surprise us. This is the person who just
last year vetoed driver`s licenses for dreamers. I mean every step of the
TADDEO: . I think the governor, he`s been to get -- oh, he didn`t veto in?
I mean, I`m sorry, it maybe (inaudible) .
VILARINO: No, I`m not saying that he didn`t vote. I don`t agree that to
categorize a governor as anti-Hispanic because somebody made a joke about a
Mexican accent. I Just -- it`s over blowing the entire the situation
SCHULTZ: Why he didn`t help out the Hispanic as far as tuition is concern
in his first year then? Why did it take him so long? And .
VILARINO: Why didn`t Obama pass immigration reform? I mean .
SCHULTZ: Well, he needs the Congress to do that.
TADDEO: Probably they have stopped it.
SCHULTZ: It needs a Congress. Speaking of President Obama, we had quite a
VILARINO: No, no, no.
SCHULTZ: . we had quite a discussion down in Florida with the focus group
on healthcare. Irina, is healthcare going to affect the vote in November?
VILARINO: In the State of Florida?
VILARINO: As far as the governor is concerned?
SCHULTZ: The -- well yeah, Charlie Crist is embracing the Affordable Care
Act and of course Rick Scott isn`t. Will that make a difference with the
voters as you see it?
VILARINO: As far as -- and when you all introduced me in the program, I
came on as a Hispanic business owner.
VILARINO: And I can tell you that the voice of Hispanics that has in
Hispanics and business owners in general. There`s a lot of uncertainty
with regards to Obamacare, there`s a lot of unknowns. And I just think
that this should have been better, dealt with beforehand. You don`t enact
a law and then figure out what`s going to happen after it`s been placed,
after it`s been passed Congress. First, you figure out what the
consequences are going to be and then you pass a law.
SCHULTZ: OK. Annette, do you think .
TADDEO: I am ...
SCHULTZ: . it will play in the election?
TADDEO: I think they`re going to try to make an issue of it. I don`t
think it`s going to hurt the Democrats. I am also a business owner and I
happen to know that the status quo, which is what the Republicans want,
because I`ve never seen what they`re going to do to cover all the millions
of people in Florida who don`t have insurance. So, I think that`s the
answer is we really need an answer, and Obamacare has been good, especially
for us business owners .
TADDEO: . who can`t get coverage in Florida.
SCHULTZ: All right. Annette Taddeo, Irina Vilarino, great .
VILARINO: Thank you.
SCHULTZ: . great to have you with us tonight, spirit of discussion, thank
VILARINO: Thank you for having us.
SCHULTZ: You bet. Still to come, Scott Walker changes his tune on
Obamacare. Wait a minute, well, we can`t sabotage it. People of Wisconsin
like it. Pretenders is next.
SCHULTZ: And in Pretenders tonight, a badger back pedal is what we call
this one, Scott Walker. The Wisconsin governor has done nothing but trash
the Affordable Care Act since its inception.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. SCOTT WALKER, (R) WISCONSIN: Postpone not just the employer mandate
but the individual mandate and you push that back enough then you do get
the time. You mention you win the Senate 14 and then two years later,
you`re new President.
Allowed my Attorney General in the first day I took office to join the
federal lawsuit. I didn`t take the state exchange. I didn`t take the
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You turned down a $119 million in the federal money to
expand Medicaid. A lot of people would say, "Really?"
WALKER: Well, in our case I don`t think the measure of success in
government is how many people are dependent in the government.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: But now, Walker is making a badger U-turn. The governor says he
never tried quote, "Sabotage the law by making it hard or difficult for
people to sign up." Because he cares about who he represents. Scott
Walker doesn`t care about Wisconsin. He cares about running for President.
Obamacare is popular because Obamacare is saving lives and effecting
people`s lives in the Badger State.
Republican Governors who reject the marketplace, where are they? They are
going south in the polls, go ask Bobby Jindal. Now, of course, Walker is
running scared. Scott Walker can embrace the healthcare law, but if he
thinks he can reverse the facts too, he can keep on pretending.
SCHULTZ: Welcome back to the Ed Show. This is the story for the folks who
take a shower after work. Charter school supporters, you know what they`re
doing? They are throwing money around to gain support of New York State
lawmakers. Big story here in New York, pro charter organization, families
for excellent schools spent $3.6 million on a series of television
commercial blasting Mayor Bill de Blasio.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are the 194 faces of Success Academy`s Public
Middle School in Harlem. They love their school and all the opportunities
it brings. But Mayor Bill De Blasio just announced he is closing their
school, taking away their hopes and dreams. He`s taking away a public
school with the 5th graders at the highest Math schools in the entire state
and scored twice the city average in reading.
Mayor de Blasio, don`t take away our children`s future. Save our school.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Well, the group is upset over Mayor De Blasio`s decision to stop
three success charter school -- academy schools from using space inside
public school buildings in the city. This is not just a local problem.
It`s all over the country. For instance, in Florida, charter schools are
looking to privatize and run education for profit. It`s impacting students
and families all over the country, as I said.
And of course down in Florida, it`s an issue. I ask Florida State Senator
Dwight Bullard, what the public school system is up against in South
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STATE SEN. DWIGHT BULLARD, (D) FLORIDA: We`ve been facing in Florida as a
whole zone. 15-year really war, if you will, by the charter reform and
with school reform folks here in the State of Florida. As you know,
Governor Jeb Bush was elected governor in 1998 here in the State of
Florida. And chose to take a very, very different stands on the public
education has look like traditionally.
And his efforts and his words have been consistently sort of part of a
continuing problem over the last 13 years, as it`s related to things like
undermining class size which has changed our constitution to make class
sizes small, they`re funding it properly, as well as the vast expansion of
a charter schools and vouchers.
SCHULTZ: So, you have seen the depletion of resources in public education
because of charter schools?
BULLARD: Absolutely, absolutely. You`ve seen a redirecting in those
resources into the 300 plus charters that we have here in the state.
SCHULTZ: Are they all for profit?
BULLARD: Some of them are nonprofit through their districts but most of
them are handled by charter management companies that are for profit.
SCHULTZ: So are you picking and choosing neighborhoods that get the
resources in the state and in your part of the state?
BULLARD: We`re seeing is cherry picking happening on the part of the
school reform folks. I mean, they`re picking the best students, and if
those students don`t workout, they just simply send them back to the public
schools but without the resources.
SCHULTZ: Is there a perception here in this part of the country that
charter schools get more than the public schools?
BULLARD: No. I think the perception is that we`re creating a three-tier
in educational system. With those who can afford it go in the private
schools, those who want to afford it but cannot go in to charters and those
who are left with whatever is left going in the public schools, and that
sort have been the message that our legislature unfortunately has been
sending at least the Republican leadership.
SCHULTZ: So, why are charter schools bad?
BULLARD: Well, charter schools are bad because they`re taking what is a
phenomenal notion of public school, traditional public schools and using
what those training grounds have created, but then transferring it over
into these other schools that are -- in essence duplicating, were targeted
in taking place over the last .
SCHULTZ: Is it targeted to hurt minority kids?
BULLARD: Unfortunately, that`s the way I view it. Unfortunately, and I
can say this as an educator, I`m a teacher by trade, that seeing the kids
that somehow don`t make it in charter schools, it seems to be a color
disparity in terms of number of kids of being kicked out disproportionally
coming from Black and Latino communities.
SCHULTZ: Honest answer, how do they compare academic achievement?
BULLARD: Apples to apples, public schools are outperforming and outpacing.
SCHULTZ: Tell me about that tier machine in advertising approach.
BULLARD: Well, let`s be clear, when you have a four private charter
management company that is now also in the business of politics, not only
do they supply resources to the legislative, to their legislative partners.
And let`s be clear about what we have. We have individuals who are on
payrolls for charter schools that are state legislators. We have -- they
are flashed with the money of a 36 to 1 disproportionate level of lobbyist
for charter industry schools versus public industry schools here in the
State of Florida. So, their resources are sometimes instrumentable (ph).
SCHULTZ: So, you say apples to apples, public schools are outperforming
charter schools. But that`s not what the advertising campaign says.
BULLARD: Not at all, not at all. They`re saying we have this new shiny
opportunity, we have something that`s different because your child has been
flailing and then making it seems though public schools are the problem.
SCHULTZ: When you see our coverage in New York about what`s going on, what
goes through your mind?
BULLARD: I can identify it because we`ve been going through it for far too
long here in Florida, where you`ve been seeing the screening or cherry
picking of the best and brightest possible students, taking those
resources, but then at the same time, seeing resources taking away from the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: So, it`s just not here in New York, it`s all over the country.
That`s the Ed Show. I`m Ed Schultz.
Politics Nation with Reverend Al Sharpton starts right now. Good evening,
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