Show: UP with STEVE KORNACKI
Date: September 27, 2014
Guest: Amy Davidson, Ana Marie Cox, Dallas Woodhouse, Mack McCorkle,
Robert Costa, George Brown, Marie Harf, Glenn Thrush, Jon Keller, Blake
STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC HOST, "UP WITH STEVE KORNACKI": Bill and Hillary`s
first full day as grandparents.
Good morning and thanks for getting UP with us. While you were asleep last
night, hopefully you were asleep last night, or maybe you found out before
you went to bed like me. But overnight, we learned that Bill and Hillary
Clinton are now grandparents. Daughter Chelsea gave birth late last night
to a baby girl. She and her husband Marc Mezvinsky are naming Charlotte
Clinton Mezvinsky. The early word is that the baby will be eligible for
the presidency in 2052 if you`re keeping score at home.
Also, in the news this morning, the White House is hinting at a time table
for naming a replacement for Attorney General Eric Holder. The UK
parliament is voted to authorize airstrikes against ISIS only in Iraq
though. The vote did not include Syria. We are going to talk about all of
But we want to begin this hour in Oklahoma, it`s where highway patrol
officers say that four people have been killed in an overnight bus crash.
All four were members of the North Central Texas College softball team.
The bus collided with a semi truck on interstate late last night. Three of
the women died at the scene and the fourth at the hospital. Fifteen more
people in the bus were injured. The bus was returning from Gainesville,
Florida. We will keep you updated on the list. Developments from this as
we get them.
But turning now to that American lead campaign against ISIS. The effort
has received three new helping hands in just the last 24 hours. Belgium
and Denmark have both agreed to offer military support. In the UK
yesterday, the House of Commons spent hours debating the authorization of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I believe Mr. Speaker, it is also
our duty to take part. This international operation is about protecting
our people, too. And protecting the streets of Britain should not be a
task that we are prepared to subcontract to other air forces of other
countries. It is right for us to act.
(END VIDOE CLIP)
KORNACKI: And after that the UK parliament did vote overwhelmingly to
authorize air strikes in Iraq, however, the vote did not include as we said
Syria. So far the attacks within Syria have been carried out by the United
States and five Arab states threatened by ISIS. Here in the U.S., Congress
is voted in favor of supplying aid and training to moderate rebel groups in
Syria. There has been new vote in airstrike or any broader campaign. In
both chambers, say there won`t be won anytime soon.
Not until the new session in January at the earliest. House Speaker John
Boehner told the "New York Times" this week, quote, "Doing this with a
whole group of members who are on their way out the door, I don`t think
that is the right way to handle this." And Harry Reid, the democratic
leader in the Senate, he isn`t calling back senators for vote either,
quote, "As we move forward I expect consultations between the
administration and Congress to continue." The big question now is, will
Congress feel the pressure? Will Congress feel any pressure to vote on
this? To come back from the campaign trail sometime in the next two month,
debate the military action that`s been going on for weeks now. The
military action being taken in the name of every American.
To discuss this I am joined by Amy Davidson, the executive editor of The
New York magazine`s website, Medal of Honor recipient and MSNBC contributor
Colonel Jack Jacobs, and Ana Marie Cox, contributor to "The Daily Beast."
So let`s start on this question of the vote. And maybe I`m being a little
too cynical here because I have noticed a pattern. And that is when, you
know, for lack of a better term back bench members of Congress are on TV or
they`re confronted on interviews about this subject, they say, oh, I want
to vote. I absolutely want to vote. We should vote. It is the right
thing to do. And I`ll give you the whole spin on that. It is almost as if
they are all being protected by the leadership, they`re being protected by
John Boehner, republican speaker, Harry Reid, the democratic leader in the
Senate. They say you know what? You guys go out there and say, you want
to vote all you want. It is what the voters want to hear but don`t worry,
we`re going to make sure you don`t actually have to.
ANA MARIE COX, DAILY BEAST CONTRIBUTOR: Well, yes, I mean, if they held a
vote they would have to be accountable for how they voted which is a
problem. Right? I mean, it is so funny to hear this clamoring for debate
over the authorization for use of force. There is the outcry for the
congress to be a part of this decision and no one actually seems to have
that happen. I was just looking at the clip of the UK debate and how novel
to have a debate over the use of force. It`s almost like there`s a country
that`s doing democracy better than us.
COL. JACK JACOBS, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: That`s why -- for the parliamentary
system here. That`s what we really need. I`m reminded of the time during
the war of Vietnam when everybody was doing exactly the same thing as this
on the air all the time talking about how bad the war in Vietnam was just
assuming that nobody had ever read the constitution and recognized that
article one of the constitution is not the President, it`s the Congress.
Just assuming that nobody had ever read the constitution. And recognize
that article one of the constitution is not the President, it is the
Congress. At the end of the day, it`s the Congress that decides whether or
not we spend the money on it. And you don`t want to do it, stop paying the
COX: The war powers act gives them the ability to do this if there is not
a regular report on how we are doing but no one seems to mention that
AMY DAVIDSON, "THE NEW YORKER": Well, you asked about pressure. Where is
the pressure going to come from? This is the president who`s talked in the
past about how this is not the way he wants to go to war but it is really
easy for him to do it. There is no pressure from Congress. So, where is
the pressure? Everybody is making it easy for everybody else and sets us
up with a bad methodology.
KORNACKI: It would take it seems to me, it`s the midterm campaign, he`s in
control on the Senate on the line, you know, every house seat in the
country is up for grabs. It would take the American people in their
districts, in their home states telling this -- coming back right now,
demanding to know where they stand, demanding to why they haven`t voted,
and it would take those members I think turning around and telling
leadership we have to do this.
DAVIDSON: It is a little amazing what John Boehner was saying, he
basically was saying he didn`t think it was appropriate for congress to do
anything important for the next three months.
KORNACKI: How is that different in having --
COX: You included a word in there, important which is not important for
Congress to do anything.
DAVIDSON: It is funny because to what you said John Boehner earlier this
week was asked, you know, isn`t this kind of what you guys are supposed to
do with the wars? And he says, well, that`s not just how it`s --
KORNACKI: Well, I will say this. In terms of what Boehner was saying
there, he is specifically talking about the lame duck session. So,
everybody is out campaigning right now and then all these guys who are,
you know, retiring or lose their seats where they come back for month and
he`s saying, he doesn`t think that is the appropriate time to vote. In
that sense I think he has a point. I think that`s a 2002. And I think
that is the vote to authorize. Now, we can go back and revisit that vote
all you want. But the one right thing he did -- they did do that vote
before the election.
KORNACKI: That took place in the fall. And every candidate who is out
there running, the Bush administration thought they had electoral
advantage. That`s why it happened. But they did do that vote before the
election. Could do it right now, yes.
COX: It`s not like that there are not tools, you know, to not to do this.
JACOBS: You know, it`s not for nothing that the American public is so
cynical about government. Neither the President nor the guys at the other
end of Pennsylvania Avenue do anything that the people wants, that is to
govern. They`re supposed to work together and govern and every poll
indicates that the American people hate their government. They are
starting to hate the form of government.
JACOBS: That`s very, very dangerous.
KORNACKI: For this to change at all for what Boehner`s laid out this week,
no vote until maybe early next year, and if you listen to Harry Reid who is
not even sure they need a vote on voter authorization, for that to change,
there has to be real noise from the --
COX: Right. And we are being manipulated by terrorists in this regard. I
mean, the lawmakers are able to like use emotion to make its appeal without
having any accountability. And these acts of violence that are happening
are being spread in the news. And lawmakers are having something to react
to and American people are having something to react to but there`s no one
there to take responsibility for any accountability moving forward.
JACOBS: Well, as long as it is not happening to them, you know, they are
perfectly happy to listen to the president say we are going to blow up
these bad guys and it won`t cost you a penny. Now, go back here at homes,
I mean, this president is the logical inheritor of exactly the same
attitude as the last president, go back to your homes, don`t worry about
DAVIDSON: We do have a lot of skin in the game.
COX: Yes, we do.
KORNACKI: And also, let`s say, we get to January and there is a vote then
look, I mean, you can look how fast this is escalating right now. Look how
fast we`re bringing in other countries. This thing is really bigger really
by the day. So, at that point what is the point of a debate in January?
It`s so many facts on the ground --
DAVIDSON: Well, that is a really interesting point. Because this isn`t
just sending some planes and bombing. It is making deals with other
countries, it`s making arrangements, it`s making tradeoffs, it`s making
promises, all of those things that war involves besides just pulling a
KORNACKI: So, we would hear in this debate from the administration, well,
you know, don`t pull out now because we`ve already established, you know,
we made these Arab alliances --
DAVIDSON: And it`s not like a war is something you can put on a shelf and
hope it is going to look exactly the same when it is politically convenient
for you to come back.
JACOBS: We are making a big effort to do that. There`s no doubt about
COX: And this is an even more confusing. I mean, if possible this is an
even more confusing situation than the Iraq situation. Right? Remember
when the hardest thing about the Middle East was to keep the Sunni and
Shiite straight. Like that`s not even relevant necessarily now. I mean,
this coalition we`re putting together is a constantly shifting coalition
within those countries. I mean, the American people are seeing something
play out that I don`t even think the lawmakers understand what the
alliances are. But I wanted to just get back to the one quick thing, which
is that idea that escalation is happening that we won`t be able to stop
this idea that the American people don`t really know exactly what is
happening. The scary statistics I saw recently in a polling was that, the
American people are now split almost 50/50 about as to whether or not we
should have pulled out of Iraq.
COX: That is an amazing number when you think about the numbers that we`re
like when Obama was elected.
KORNACKI: That`s right. I mean, that`s a bigger subject, too. And of
course, there`s a big talking points too about the circumstances of the
U.S. finally drawing down a couple of years ago. That has been heavily
discussed and obviously still going to be. I want to move on though.
A couple of other topics we want to make sure to get you this morning, ISIS
proving to be the big topic of conversation at this weekend`s Value Voters
Summit in Washington. You probably heard this thing. The annual
conservative gathering continues this morning. You will going to hear from
radio host Glenn Beck later today. And yesterday some of republicans now
considering presidential bids used the podium to criticize the current
administration`s handling of the campaign against ISIS.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: All the vacuum of American leadership we see in
the world. We need a president who will speak out for people of faith,
prisoners of conscience.
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: Our foreign policy though has too often
accepted wars instead of peace and intervention instead of strength.
Leading to a host of unintended consequences. Toppling secular dictators
in the Middle East led time and time again to chaos and ultimately that
chaos enabled and embedded the rise of radical Islam.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Ted Cruz, Rand Paul at the Value Voters Summit yesterday. Also
notable not invited, intentionally not invited by organizers to this was
Jeb Bush, Chris Christie. And so, what you are seeing is the classic
divide between sort of the conservative ideological base of the Republican
Party and the establishment. That`s what this is about. This is about,
you know, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul trying to vide the voice of the base. So,
I`ll say one thing jumped out at me. And that is, you know, you think of
these big political events, they think of these big political speeches,
what they do always do?
They always come and they always have, some, you know, upbeat peppy music.
Springsteen`s "Born to Run" or something. They take the stage too. This
was telling me. Rand Paul took the stage, not to anything like that but,
quote, "according to New York Times, he took the stage as a video of a
fetal ultrasound played for the crowd." And that is to me, that tells you
the story, Rand Paul who has a lot of skeptics on the Christian right.
DAVIDSON: You know, I saw that in the paper and my thought was I love
seeing my friends` ultrasounds, I love seeing mine. And I actually often
enjoy watching Rand Paul speak. But somehow the combination of it as
intro-music, other politicization is not -- doesn`t bode well --
I bet it did but the idea of this crowd.
JACOBS: It is for them and not for you.
COX: It is actually pornographic, it`s invasive in almost a literal way.
But I want to say, like so you said a little while ago about the Syria
situation that Americans are in and the incompetence and lack of
accountability in our lawmakers but Americans are so souring on our form of
government. Well, the -- conference has another idea about whether form of
government should be and actually looks a little bit like what -- want. I
mean, they really are calling for the explicit input of religion into
Tony Perkins gave an interview where he talked about recent Pew Poll that
said, Americans wanted to have more religious involvement in our national
politics, he`s took this as a wonderful sign that we should have churches
endorsing candidates, that we have churches involved in, you know, in
democracy. That is not a bad thing necessarily but what, you know, this
particular, Rand is doing, what the kind of stuff that Ted Cruz talked
about, I mean, it`s a dangerous move to think that the American people are
actually going to be OK with that particular mapping of former religious
extremism on to politics.
JACOBS: With a primary like that because primaries attract people six
standard deviations away from the mean, you have a hard time winning a
KORNACKI: That`s the interesting thing to me about Rand Paul. Because the
same meeting last year they took the straw poll and Ted Cruz ran away with
it. He got a 40 percent. There`s going to be a straw poll. Later this
afternoon, we`ll see what happens. But you can see that Rand Paul senses
he has got some ground to make up with Ted Cruz when it comes to this sort
of the Christian conservative voters.
COX: And the foreign policy stuff, actually.
KORNACKI: Right. And also on Israel. But the Paul strategy is, he thinks
he can ultimately unite in a way Ted Cruz can`t the establishment of the
party maybe reluctantly with the base. And this is how he`s playing to the
base of the party. This is what he thinks it takes to get to the base.
And the question is, forget the general election. Just the establishment
of the party is he doing something here that turns the establishment of the
party off to him.
DAVIDSON: Well, I think we saw it a little bit in his clip about foreign
policy. The establishment of the Republican Party is not where Rand Paul
is on intervention, on America`s role in the world. So it`s going to be I
think a really interesting stretch for the Republican Party. He is
appealing to the base on these values but he also does have an appeal to a
whole wing of the Republican Party that is not interested in going places.
KORNACKI: Right. The -- he`s interesting, I see Ted Cruz as somebody as
even if he ends up being the choice of the base sort of speak, I can`t see
how he gets the nomination because there is too much resistance from the
establishment. I have seen Rand Paul makes some interesting end roads over
the last year. So, watching him make such a sharp play for the sort of the
social conservative was striking. I am interested in seeing how it plays
out. Like we said, the straw poll this afternoon, we will have results to
you later, we`ll talk about it a little bit tomorrow. We have more to talk
about with the panel too. We have to squeeze a break in. We will be right
KORNACKI: All right. We are back and turning to the domestic front. The
White House is now hinting at a time table at least sort of for replacing
Attorney General Eric Holder who announced his recognition on Thursday.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest says, the Senate should act
quickly to confirm once the President names a nominee but he didn`t say
when that nomination might come. Technically, officially it can`t come
until Congress is back in session. Of course, they are out campaigning
right now. White House Press Secretary cited recent precedent in the --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: In less than a month, December
6, Secretary Gates was confirmed to his post with strong bipartisan
support. So, there is a precedent for presidents making important cabinet
nominations and counting on Congress to confirm them promptly even in the
context of a lame duck session if necessary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Yesterday, Attorney General Holder told our own Joy Reid that
his resignation will not affect the White House`s agenda and the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: People have to understand something.
Barack Obama is still the president of the United States. All right? He
and I share a world view. I did the things that he wanted me to do. We
are partners. My departure is not going to have any impact on this
administration`s commitment to the civil rights issue that has been the
life of this president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: So what do we think is going to happen when President Obama
nominates his next attorney general? So, I thought there was something
kind of clever here in how they`re doing this. Because there is nobody,
almost nobody has enjoyed beating up on it and just going after it for the
last six years than Eric Holder. You know, Fast and Furious holding him in
contempt, all of this stuff. So, what the White House is saying here is
not just Eric Holder is going away, now we want to appoint somebody else,
Eric Holder is going away but he is only going away once somebody new is
confirmed. So, basically republicans, you want this guy who you have
railed against for six years gone then get somebody new in there. You
don`t get somebody new in there, you are stuck with Eric Holder.
DAVIDSON: Nonetheless I think Ted Cruz called on his colleagues actually
to maybe not leave this choice to the lame duck session and maybe push it
and to fight and make sure they had somebody.
KORNACKI: Well, that is a key difference potentially --
DAVIDSON: I don`t know who that would be.
KORNACKI: The control of the Senate, right, is on the line in November.
So, lame duck, we already know democrats will have the majority in the lame
duck session. If you push it beyond the lame duck session, this in-chance
republicans are going to have the majority in the Senate at that point.
COX: I just want to say like I`m not so sad he is leaving either. That,
you know, I mean, it would be interesting to see if the republicans can
find somebody worse on civil liberties or if we actually get an
improvement. I mean, that is some place that they have actually criticized
Eric Holder. He has been terrible. I mean, he`s been the worst Attorney
General for journalists, you know, probably in decades. And I don`t know,
I mean, it is sort of weird to see like this happening. And the right is
getting so happy. And then I feel like civil libertarians are kind of like
stuck, kind of holding their, you know, biting their tongue because this
has been a disaster for us.
And that`s not getting talked about because he is such a lightning rod.
And I do have a lot of personal respect for him. I do think this stuff
he`s done on civil rights are really important. But you know, those two
things are linked. I mean, when we start silencing journalists, when we
start letting journalists in jail, when we start letting corporations do
what they want because they are too big to jail, the people who get hurt
by that or the people who are minorities, the less powerful in society.
JACOBS: I think Holder has been quite a bit to the right of where people
think he is on specific issues, absolutely. He is to the left of probably
where the majority of middle of the road Americans. But if you take
everything in total he is actually quite a bit to the right of where
everybody thinks he it is.
DAVIDSON: Yes. Well, it is interesting that the civil rights aspect of
his legacy has been very much in Obama`s second term. It is something that
not where he started. I mean, he always had these principles but the real
push in these areas has really been in the last two years for Holder. And
there is an argument that he shifted what his legacy would have been if he
had left at the end of the first term. You know, when we talk about civil
rights that also includes gay rights, it includes helping bring the
administration around a marriage equality but, you know, this is the
Department of Justice that could have had a role in NSA spying.
KORNACKI: The other question here too is, who would want this job at this
point? I was thinking about it. It`s like, you know, the Obama --
It will be eight years but no matter what happens the next two years, I
think whenever history looks back at the Obama administration, you think
the Attorney General is Eric Holder. That is where the most consequential
stuff happen. That is where the mission was set. So, I have seen all
these names float, it`s some pretty big names, some like, you know, Duval
Patrick in Massachusetts. I`m saying, let`s say you get confirmed. You`ll
going to have a little less than two years in the job and sort of the worst
two years in any administration. The lame duck two years. This is a job
more for sort of a place holder feels at this point.
DAVIDSON: Or a somebody who`s making some transition. A lot of the names
that had been mentioned, Donald Verrilli, the solicitor general moving from
one kind of administration job to another. And also maybe a senator. So
maybe the senator, so maybe the Senator Clair McCaskill so --
KORNACKI: Kamala Harris from California. For good reason, right? She
could be governor of California in a couple of years, you are side tracking
DAVIDSON: And who knows what else --
JACOBS: I think it has to be somebody inside, Verrilli`s a good example,
somebody inside who knows everybody and doesn`t have bugs on them and slide
right through without too much nonsense. You don`t want to wait until the
next session. Definitely not wait until the next session. You give up too
much option if you do it now and somebody who`s inside the --
COX: And I don`t think it`s going to be a woman. Because nominate a woman
for the lame duck part of the administration I think would look weird. So,
I think they are going to choose like a place holder type person.
KORNACKI: Yes. Like I say, the big variable too again, decent chance
republicans take that to Senate. So, at that point, if that happens you
really have to do it in the lame duck.
JACOBS: You don`t want to throw discussion and say, OK, we are going to
bet on holding onto the Senate. So, why don`t we let it slide to the next
KORNACKI: Yes. So that means, if that is true a name should be coming
very soon. You should point out that Reuters is reporting that two British
fighter jets were seen leaving a royal air force base in site for us this
one day after parliament authorize strike in Iraq that`s happening this
morning. We will keep you updated as details become available.
For now my thanks to MSNBC military analyst Jack Jacobs for joining us this
morning. Amy and Ana Marie, we will talk to you a little bit later on.
Next, a Senate seat republican`s thought they could take from democrats
maybe slipping from their grasp. That`s still ahead.
KORNACKI: It`s a big day in New York City. It`s also a big day here at
MSNBC. Jay-z, no doubt, staying, Alicia Keys, Carrie Underwood and many,
many other artists are joining together today with the goal of raising
awareness about extreme poverty, the goal of maybe ending extreme poverty
by the year 2030.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I never had a chance to get an education but I would
be very sad if my children couldn`t get an education. I don`t wish them to
follow in my path. What had initially enabled me to send these children to
school is that I started working in the weaving industry.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Because my parents did not get a chance to have an
education and their strong will to give us an education, I also feel the
responsibility to my children so that in the future they will have an
education and lead a better life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: That`s two women in Rwanda speaking to MSNBC about the
opportunities they are trying to provide for their families and to
themselves. The global citizens festival will be airing today right here
at MSNBC. You are looking live at preparations underway at this hour in
Central Park. As I mentioned, Jay-z, no doubt, Alicia Keys, they are among
the many who will be performing. All of the fun, all of the action, all of
the excitement starts at 3:00 p.m. Eastern. You will not want to miss it,
right here on MSNBC. And we will be right back.
KORNACKI: Everyone who crunches the numbers, everyone who analyzes the XS
and OS in the battle for control in the Senate ends up using the same two
words, it depends as in what`s going to happen on November 4th. Well, it
depends on any number of variables and factors and quirks and any number of
states. But one thing is certain, North Carolina is going to play a
particularly critical role. These numbers cruncher Nate Cohn of The New
York Times has wrote on Thursday, if democrats assemble a firewall in
defense of the Senate, the polling suggests North Carolina will be its
Big turnout years like 2008, young voters in North Carolina could elect a
democratic president. And its victory can help to carry other democrats
down ballot to Washington. But now that Senator Kay Hagan is up for
reelection in a midterm election where turnout will be lower, what is her
path to victory without Barack Obama on the ballot, without Barack Obama
bringing out all those voters who don`t usually take part in midterms, part
of them, younger voters?
Right now just over a month before the election, this race is actually
shaping up as one of the biggest surprises in the country with Hagan
leading by nearly four-points, this according to the real clear politics
average of all polls taken in the race. And she is doing well,
unexpectedly well among older voters, that`s a group that`s been trending
more and more republican lately. This Hagan/Tillis race is part of a much
bigger story in the state of North Carolina. It comes two years after
republicans finally after generations of trying, finally won complete
control of state government and responded by aggressively pursuing a deeply
conservative agenda including tax and education cuts, and voting
restrictions. Tillis, Hagen`s opponent is closely associated with the
sharp turn to the right since he is the speaker of the North Carolina
North Carolina is an intensely divided state right now because of all of
this. Since last year democrats have been staging demonstrations and
sometimes even getting arrested outside the state house every Monday, Moral
Mondays, that`s the name made given to these events. North Carolina is a
purple state you can probably say but it`s a different kind of purple
state. It has some very blue parts and very some red parts. It is on the
line in the Senate race besides perhaps control of the U.S. Senate is where
the political center is in North Carolina if there is a political center
Hagan`s best bet is that there are just enough voters who aren`t happy with
how republicans have been running their state and won`t vote for Tillis
because of it. And right now, it still look like that in her part, but
will still look like that in November?
Joining me now to discuss the North Carolina Senate race and the war in
North Carolina is Dallas Woodhouse, he`s the founder and president of the
conservative non-profit group, Carolina Rising. And former North Carolina
State director of Americans for Prosperity. And I`m also joined by Pope
Mac McCorkle from Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy. He`s
also a former democratic political consultant. When we introduced a name
like that, I know I`m talking to somebody down south.
So, welcome to both of you. So, I want to start the discussion by putting
two poll numbers up here. We showed you the real clear politics average
for the Senate race puts Hagan ahead by about four points right now. This
week public policy polling, PPP put out a poll, favorable, unfavorable
ratings of these candidates. If you look at Kay Hagan, the incumbent, not
that good. Forty three percent favorable. Forty eight percent
unfavorable. Not a great place for an incumbent to be. But then, look at
her opponent, look at Tom Tillis, speaker of the statehouse there in North
Carolina, 34 favorable, 48 unfavorable. Much worst.
Dallas, I will start with you. To me that looks like the difference in the
race. I see that gap. I see her lead in the polling average that we saw.
I saw everything we described and it happened in North Carolina in the last
two years and I say, it looks to me like there were voters in North
Carolina who are having a negative reaction to two years of republican rule
DALLAS WOODHOUSE, PRESIDENT, CAROLINA RISING: I mean, we certainly had a
very substantive debate in North Carolina. We are having a good debate in
North Carolina. At least in North Carolina, we are not having the
ridiculous debate like they are in Arkansas of whether the republican
candidate is for or against Ebola or like in Alaska whether the republican
attorney general is responsible for the murder and rape of a 5-year-old
child. So, we are having a good debate. A lot of people don`t know
Speaker Tom Tillis yet.
I mean, I would tell you that most people don`t know anything about the
speaker of their state house. We have had a good debate here in North
Carolina. Tom Tillis is actually in a pretty good position. He was never
going to leave this race until the very end. I think he can still win
this. Senator Hagan can still win this. We put a new television ad on
this week, we put $2 million behind it to talk about his work to pass
through the North Carolina house a requirement that the insurance companies
cover children therapies for children with autism. I think the speaker is
in good shape. But we are having a big debate about what the legislature
has done including passing tax reform.
KORNACKI: Right. And Dallas, yes. Let me follow up with you on that.
Because you are saying, he hasn`t really defined himself and introduced
himself maybe the way he wants to, to North Carolina voters. But it seems
to me though, the one thing that North Carolina voters do know about him is
they know he is the top republican in the state legislature. Top
republican in the state house there. So, all of these things that have
been happening in their state capitol has happened on his watch.
WOODHOUSE: I would say that some people know that. The latest polls show
from this 7,000 institute and other parts has showed a lot of people don`t
know who he is. Look, I would say that Senator Hagan has done a good job
demagoguing the education issue. Because Senator Hagan has no record to
run on. The one thing that people know about her is that she cast the
deciding vote to destroy our health care system in America. That`s what
she`s done. That`s the only thing she`s done.
KORNACKI: You are saying the Affordable Care Act. You`re referring to the
Affordable Care Act there. Mack, let me --
WOODHOUSE: The unaffordable care act in North Carolina.
KORNACKI: Al right. Well, Mac, let me bring you in on that Mac. Because,
you know, Dallas is citing some of the things he says, tax reform.
Democrats look at that and say, hey, these are tax cuts that blew a hole in
the budget and resulted in education cuts. How do you see what the
legislature has done, and what the governor has done in North Carolina last
two years playing into this Senate race?
MAC MCCORKLE, DUKE UNIVERSITY: Right now it`s the decisive issue and the
reason that Senator Hagan has established her lead. You need to remember
that Speaker Tillis was in the lead earlier in this race so there has been
a change. I agree that it is still an open situation and so it all
depends. But right now the education issue is dominating. And Speaker
Tillis is really the one who is looking like the bad incumbent. He
certainly is not that well etched in people`s minds but to the extent they
know about him he is associated with what has been going on in the
legislature and that is dragging him down.
KORNACKI: If you could talk specifically when you say education, what is
specifically is it that has been done on education? We say, cuts. But
what specifically, how`s specifically has that affected education in North
Carolina. And what voters, what part of the state are you talking about
where this is particularly resonant?
MCCORKLE: Well, certainly the hostility towards the legislature is the
closer you get to Raleigh, the more people are aware and more trouble for
Speaker Tillis. But it is really across the state the concern about our
schools. Historically the public schools have been kind of the civic
religion of the state, the way we have uplift. And there are a number of
things the republicans have done. Mainly the choice was when the economy
started to recover a little bit and the budget started to recover some, the
republicans made a major choice. They made a major choice to have major
tax cuts especially for the wealthy rather than to help --
WOODHOUSE: Mac, did the republicans not cut a sales tax?
KORNACKI: All right. Dallas, we have to squeeze one break in here. I do
want to hear what you have to say about it. And I have a question I want
to ask you base on that too.
We`re going to squeeze a break in and we will hear from you first thing on
the other side.
KORNACKI: As we said a few minutes ago, we are now getting our first
pictures in of the two British fighter jets that a Reuters photographer saw
leaving a royal air force base in Cyprus today. UK defense ministry said
they were headed to Iraq. We were ready to hit targets since their first
mission since parliament just yesterday, authorize strikes against ISIS
militants. We`ll have more on the mission as details become available.
And now, I want to turn back to our discussion in North Carolina with
Dallas Woodhouse and Matt McCorkle talking about that key Senate, they`re
talking about how old the action sort of on the conservative side and the
State Capitol might be playing into this. I know Dallas before the break,
you were trying to say something, so go right ahead.
WOODHOUSE: Well, what I was saying is the republicans did pass substantial
tax reform in North Carolina, one of the largest rewrites of the tax code
in North Carolina history. They flattened the tax code and over two years
they cut the sales tax, they cut the income tax, they cut taxes on every
person in North Carolina that pays taxes. But here is the problem with tax
reform is that we have seen everywhere all across the country. Tax reform
is the easiest thing in the world to demagogue and the democrats are doing
a very good job of that in North Carolina. And it is hurting the speaker.
But here are two things Steve that I think will turn this race back in
favor of Speaker Tillis in the closing month. Two things.
Blue cross blue shield, the largest insurance carrier in North Carolina is
getting ready to send out hundreds of thousands of notices of premium
increases for health insurance in the next month or so, that is going to
bring health care back to the front. Lots of people are going to be very
angry and Kay Hagan is going to be held to account for that. And then
there`s going to be one final thing that Speaker Tillis is going to be able
to look at the camera and make a closing argument on. Senator Hagan, state
Senator Hagan looked in a camera just like I am now and told the voters of
North Carolina six years ago speaking about Elizabeth Dole and said that
nobody should be a senator from North Carolina if they voted with a
president, any president 92 percent of the time like Elizabeth Dole did
with George Bush. She has voted with Barack Obama 96 percent of the time.
WOODHOUSE: She has failed the voters of North Carolina by a standard she
set. That will be Tom Tillis`s closing argument and it will be a powerful
KORNACKI: OK. Well, to put in context what you are saying there about
what you think is the power of that message we just put it up. Also,
President Obama`s approval rating in North Carolina was tested this week.
We also have that number. So, he comes in at 42-53. Approval rating of
42, disapprove of 53. The republican governor in the state --
WOODHOUSE: I have seen some of it as low as 38 percent.
KORNACKI: The republican governor of the state is sitting there at 41-46,
not much to right home either but Mack you hear that, what do you say?
MCCORKLE: Well, I mean, Dallas is right. Speaker Tillis needs to change
the focus of the debate here. The problem for Speaker Tillis is whether
the attacks on President Obama and Senator Hagan`s supposed close
relationship to him has already been factored in by the voters. The
problem for Speaker Tillis is coming through the first debate and over the
last weeks of ads seems to have legitimated the notion that education
really is a key differential and tells you a lot about Speaker Tillis`s own
personal values. So, he does need to get himself out of this mire here
that he`s put himself in. So yes, there is a chance for a closing
argument. Whether it will work, I don`t know. But Speaker Tillis is in
deep trouble on the education issue.
WOODHOUSE: I think the voters --
KORNACKI: We`re out of time here. I`m sorry. But obviously this is a
race to keep a close eye on over the next month or so and on election
night. And hopefully we`ll have the two of you back again before Election
Day. But for now I want to thank Dallas Woodhouse from Carolina Rising,
Mack McCorkle from Duke University for joining us this morning.
WOODHOUSE: Thank you.
MCCORKLE: Thank you.
KORNACKI: Mitt Romney may try something that no republican has done since
Richard Nixon. More on what that is, right after this.
KORNACKI: Sometimes the photo in the headline tell you everything you need
to know. This photo of Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney sitting next to each other
on Romney`s 2012 campaign was posted to a conservative news site on
Thursday morning and the headline at Human Events, "Establishment
Republican Smackdown: Mitt versus Jeb." Exclamation point on the end
there. That came in response to a report from conservative columnist Byron
York who wrote that all of the talk about another Mitt Romney for president
campaign is actually real but according to York, Romney is, quote,
"carefully weighing the pluses and minuses of another run."
Now no defeated major party nominee has gone on to run for president again
since Richard Nixon who lost in 1960 and then won in 1968. But polls like
this recent one from USA Today that look at the field in the critical early
state of Iowa continue to show Romney running not just ahead but far ahead
of the rest of his party`s perspective presidential candidates. And
meanwhile this week, another big name republican made 2016 news with Jeb
Bush telling the "New York Times" that he hasn`t yet decided if he will run
but once he begins the process of making a decision, quote, "It won`t take
that long once I start."
And Bush is doing what everyone who wants to run for president does, he was
out this week campaigning for his party at an event in North Carolina, the
state we were just talking about. In every presidential election, there
seems to be an unofficial candidate of the republican establishment, that`s
the role in both Romney and Bush would be looking to play if they run. But
does the establishment want either of them to run, does it want both of
them to run in 2016?
Here to discuss what is going on in republican world is The Washington Post
national political reporter Robert Costa. The perfect person to be taking
to about this. Robert, thanks for taking a few minutes in joining us this
morning. So, let me start with this Romney report. Because I have to say,
I don`t have any inside information on Romney, I want to turn to you for
But I just thought from afar looking at this poll numbers, I believe that
when you have Romney running that far ahead of the rest of the field, and
the rest of the field includes somebody with the name like Bush, we are not
just measuring name recognition here. This is saying something little
deeper and a little more significant. So, I`ve been saying, I suspect
there`s something in this Romney thing, what are you hearing? Because this
Byron York report this week caught a lot of attention.
ROBERT COSTA, THE WASHINGTON POST NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER: Well, the
"Washington Post" has been reporting for months that the Romney speculation
is real. And I think there are a lot of telling signs you can point to.
And the biggest one to me is that when you look at Romney`s financial
network, his major donors, and look at this political circle, Stuart
Stevens, Ron Coughlin (ph) and others, they have not yet signed on to
another 2016 contender. That means they are waiting for Romney to make a
real decision behind the scenes.
KORNACKI: Is there any sense of what, I mean, because obviously there are
all sorts of things you have to think about if you`re going to run for
president. But I have to imagine there is an extra bit of agonizing if you
are Mitt Romney, if you`re anybody like him who`s ran once before and lost.
Ran in the general election and lost. The risk of history judging you and
-- just a perennial loser. I imagine that has to weigh in. Is there any
sense of where his deliberations are on this?
COSTA: I think Romney realizes that running against a very difficult
proposition. But when he looks at who would be the competition for that
establishment space within the republican primary, he sees Jeb Bush. And a
lot of talk behind the scenes in the GOP world is that Bush may not run and
may not have the fire in the belly to run. Chris Christie is seen as a
damaged candidate. And all this Romney talk, it`s really a commentary on
Chris Christie. If Chris Christie had the strength he had last year before
Bridgegate, I think you would see Romney clearly making a public statement
that he would not run in 2016. But that donor class of the party, he wants
Romney to be on the fence and ready in case they need them.
KORNACKI: And when you see, I mentioned the polls when we put one up there
in Ohio that shows, if Romney is included he runs way ahead of everybody
and that everybody includes Jeb Bush. So, Jeb Bush making a little bit
noise this week, hitting the campaign trail in North Carolina. When you
see Jeb Bush down there at like six, seven percent against Romney at like
35 percent. What does that tell you? Do you read that as the Republican
Party saying we don`t want to nominate a Bush again or is this something
else going on there?
COSTA: I think you`re right on that. When I talk to republican activists,
conservative Tea Party types, they remind me that Jeb Bush has not been on
a ballot since 2002 more than a decade ago. He doesn`t have the ties to
the party, the way the party has especially changed since 2010`s Tea Party
wave. I think Mitt Romney is right now, what`s he`s thinking about is, if
he does run, timing is very important. It is strategic. And when I talked
to some former Romney advisors who are on the periphery right now of these
discussions. They say, if Romney runs, he`s already thinking ahead of how
we would do it. He would wait until late 2015 because of his political
capital and his stagger, he doesn`t have to rush like a lot of people will
right after the midterms this year. He may even skip Iowa. He is ahead in
the polls there as you say, but go straight to New Hampshire and let
someone else in the conservative battle out in Iowa, win New Hampshire and
then maybe tried to win Florida.
KORNACKI: Yes. And quickly we talked about this earlier in the show, the
Values Voter Summit that`s taking place this weekend. And Tony Perkins,
the organizer went out of his way to say that Jeb Bush and Chris Christie
were not invited. He said, we had to be selective. So, he didn`t invite
Christie this year, didn`t invite Jeb Bush, they weren`t on the top of the
list. You know, we always talk about the establishment and the base. A
message here about Jeb Bush and Chris Christie standing with the base.
COSTA: I sat down with Tony Perkins last night at that Values Voter Summit
in D.C. And when you talk a lot of those evangelical leaders, they`re
conservatives. They see some weakness on the republican establishment
side. They think Christie, Jeb, Romney, these are old names and
conservatives could walk in and take the nomination. But when you see so
many powerful conservative names among the activists crews, poll, et
cetera, rising, guys like Tony Perkins are worried that it`s going to be a
battle royal on the hard right and they need to come to some kind of a
consensus in the coming months by who their favorite is.
KORNACKI: All right. We`ll be watching this straw poll closing today. My
thanks to The Washington Post Robert Costa. I appreciate you taking a few
minutes this morning.
And still ahead, the crime scene in Oklahoma that bore an eerie resemblance
to our fight against ISIS in the Middle East.
KORNACKI: Three more nations in the new coalition of the willing.
And thanks for staying with us this busy morning. Two British fighter jets
are flying to Iraq this hour. They took off from a royal Air Force base in
Cyprus earlier this morning. And the British defense ministry says they
are ready to strike once targets are identified. We`re going to keep an
eye on that for you.
And also, in Oklahoma, police officials are dealing with the aftermath of
an interstate bus crash overnight. Four young women on the North Texas
college softball team were killed.
And Captain George Brown of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol joins us now by
telephone. And Captain Brown, thanks for joining us. I know it was a very
busy and difficult morning for you. Can you tell us though what the latest
is on the victims?
CAPTAIN GEORGE BROWN, OKLAHOMA HIGHWAY PATROL: Well, first of all, this
morning we move forward with the investigation. I want to say that our
thoughts are with the families of the victims in this terrible tragedy.
Yes. We are early into the investigation. We have technical investigators
from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol who are awaiting investigators from the
NTSB. What we know right now is that we can confirm four students from
softball team on the North Central Texas College have been killed in a
crash involving a semi tractor-trailer on I-35, it was near the Turner
Falls exit last night sometime around 9:00. There were a total of 16
people on the bus, that was the coach or the driver plus 15 students.
Again, four of those confirmed killed. Still early but we know right now
that there is strong evidence to support inattention by the semi driver
played a role in this crash. We will follow up on that with interviews and
certain investigation techniques. But we can confirm that we believe at
this point inattention played a role.
KORNACKI: And Captain, is the driver of the semi, is he being detained?
BROWN: We are in talks right now. He`s standard, in compliance with the
Oklahoma law that we do some blood draw and certain things anytime there is
a fatal or serious injury crash. So, I have not been notified that there
have been arrested made at this point. If that does change I`m happy to
KORNACKI: And also there is obviously the terrible news of the four
fatalities, others on the bus though, do you have any sense the seriousness
of the other injuries?
BROWN: I just spoke with investigators and the scene commander Captain
Hampton from that area notified me that we are expecting at this point
other students injured in the crash to be treated and released later this
afternoon. We hope for that. Again, our thoughts are with their families.
KORNACKI: Definitely. Captain George Brown of the Oklahoma Highway
Patrol. Thanks for filling us in this morning. We plan to check back to
you hopefully throughout the day. And good luck out there. Very difficult
Turning now to international news and the latest on the U.S.-led military
operation against ISIS. Britain, Belgium and Denmark have now on signed on
to the U.S. led airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq. Says, we discussed
earlier but they are not supporting air strikes against ISIS in Syria which
the U.S. begin earlier this week. President Obama delivered a strongly
worded threat to the terrorist group at the United Nations this week as he
tried to rally global support for his air campaign.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Those who have joined ISIL
should leave the battlefield while they can. Those who continue to fight
for a hateful cause will find they are increasingly alone. For we will not
succumb to threats and we will demonstrate that the future belongs to those
who build and not those who destroy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: And it was exactly one year ago that Obama stood in that very
same place and made the case for global action in Syria. Back then public
enemy number one was the Assad regime.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: When I stated my willingness to order a limited strikes against the
Assad regime in response to the brazen use of chemical weapons, I did not
do so lightly. A leader who slaughtered his citizens and gassed children
to death cannot regain the legitimacy to lead a badly fractured company.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: And now, one year later, the U.S. allies are bombing Syria but
our missiles are not trained on the Assad regime instead we are targeting
ISIS in the Khorasan group. Which the Assad regime is completely in-favor
of. Not only is the government of Bashar al-Assad keeping praise on these
U.S. strikes, the Assad regime has made no attempt to defend their airspace
from American planes. So, are we now unintentionally helping Assad who is
a major security just concern a year ago?
Joining me now is NBC News Foreign Correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin. Ayman,
thanks for taking a few minutes this morning. So, on that question of --
this is been one of the many questions I think that has sort of stamp a lot
of people, but this idea of, all right, we are in Syria, we`re trying to
promote and support this rebel movement because we want them to be fighting
ISIS. But at the same time we ultimately want them to take out Assad but
of course others in the region maybe don`t want Assad out. Can this
balancing act work in your mind?
AYMAN MOHYELDIN, NBC NEWS FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I mean, the short
answer to that is, this is an extremely complicated situation with
loyalties from different parties and countries. Sometimes criss-crossing,
sometimes aligning, sometimes completely in opposite to one another. In a
situation of ISIS the United States obviously is now trying to degrade and
destroy ISIS as President Obama has stated in the past. And it seems that
the Assad regime right now does not mind that. Keep in mind that obviously
ISIS is an existential threat to the Assad regime. President Assad wants
to stay in power, wants to survive.
So, if the United States can eliminate one of those threats for the
president of Syria, he is certainly going to welcome it. The question is
going to be, whether or not the Syrian moderate opposition that is also now
being equipped and trained by the United States gains some momentum and can
retake the territory that ISIS gives up or concedes if that does happen and
that ultimately turns their weapons on the Assad regime. I think it is
going to be a very complicated situation. The short answer, there is no
clear answer at this point.
KORNACKI: And how do you think, if we skip ahead here and I don`t mean to
but if we skip ahead to that, you know, possibility you are talking about
there where if the arming and the training of these rebels works in terms
of ISIS and then you have built up this much stronger, much more cohesive,
much better organized force and it goes after Assad, Assad obviously not
happy with that, how does the rest of the Middle East respond to that?
MOHYELDIN: Well, what we have seen in the past is that when the regime of
President Assad was threatened and that there was momentum on the side of
those rebels getting closer to Damascus really inflicting severe casualties
to the regime, we saw groups like Hezbollah, sending fighters in this area.
We saw the Irani and regime send in weapons and send in advisers to prop up
price in Assad. We can probably expect that is going to happen again.
They certainly don`t want to see him removed from power. They have
demonstrated they`re willing to commit to that fight. They`ve kind of
perhaps eased up a little bit because he has gained a bit of an upper hand
and created this neutrality if you will and kind of a status quo where
neither side is winning or losing. But if the momentum changes as a result
of U.S. involvement now in Syria, you can bet they will probably rejoin the
fight with the same kind of voracity and ferociousness they did the first
KORNACKI: All right. My thanks to NBC News correspondent Amy Mohyeldin
for joining us this morning. Also this morning in Oklahoma gain, the FBI
is joined local authorities in investigating a beheading at a food
processing plant. Police say an employee named Alton Nolen took a ten inch
knife he normally uses to cut vegetables and he used it to kill one
employee and then critically stabbed another. He had just been fired from
the company apparently. The company`s chief operating officer stopped the
attacks by shooting the alleged suspect with the rifle he kept in his
office. Police officials say, the alleged suspect was a converted Muslim
who had been trying to solicit his fellow workers to convert to Islam.
I want to turn now to deputy spokesperson for the State Department Marie
Harf, he joins us here in New York at the table. Marie, thanks for taking
a few minutes.
I do want to start on the story out of Oklahoma. Obviously, the details
are kind of sketchy right now in terms of what we know and what we don`t
know. But the basics here of, a beheading. I mean, beheading obviously
has been in the news lately. A beheading from somebody who according to
these reports, recently converted to and maybe trying to convert others to
Islam. Are you aware of any kind of connection or any kind of a potential
connection between this man and this action and ISIS or anything that`s
going on overseas?
MARIE HARF, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON: Not that I have heard of. Not
aware of a connection. I know our domestic law enforcement officials are
looking at this right now. The local law enforcement is, as well. But, in
general, obviously we are concerned about people who may look to ISIL and
look at their ideology. And be drawn to that. And that is why a key part
of this coalition we are building and there`s been a lot of attention on
the military side but is to delegitimize ISIL`s really hateful, really
brutal ideology. Because all it takes is one or two people, some place to
really into that and scare people.
KORNACKI: How serious -- and again, we will learn the details on this. I
think this one suggests something that I think people are worried about in
general here, the possibility if it`s not this guy in this situation, the
possibility that you have others who is sort of self-radicalized just here
in the United States, they are not officially part of the group, they pick
something up on the internet and the next thing you know, they are doing
their own beheadings here. How serious of a threat domestically is that?
HARF: Well, I think in terms of the threat domestically, what we think is
the most serious threat is Americans who may have gone to join the fight or
other westerners in Syria and Iraq. We know there are just a small number
of them who have passports who go there and may try to combat the United
States and threaten people here. That`s really the threat we`re focused on
with the homeland. We are not aware of any active credible plots from ISIL
inside the United States but we constantly remain vigilant because we know
it is a threat.
KORNACKI: Also, we have been reporting this morning, I think you`ve heard
this British fighter jets that are supposedly into the day after they have
the vote in parliament in Britain. British fighter jets are supposedly on
their way, ready to hit targets in Iraq. Can you tell us anything about
what is going on there?
HARF: Well, we continue to build this coalition. And again, on the
military side, we absolutely believe we have all of the military power we
need to take on this threat both in Iraq and in Syria. But the fact that
countries in the Arab world, countries in Europe are stepping up and
signing up to help us fight this threat because they know how serious it
is. I think that is a sign of how seriously we all take the threat and how
it is not just going to be the United States, this going to be our partners
really taking direct action, as well.
KORNACKI: When the United States began his campaign of air strikes this
week, as we stepped up its campaign of airstrikes this week, I want to read
to you this was the justification for this at least for the urgency of
this, was this group called the Khorasan group which a lot of Americans
really haven`t heard of until, really until this week. This is what
Lieutenant General William Mayville, he`s a director of operations for the
Joint Chiefs, this is what he said, he said that the intelligence reports
indicated that the Khorasan group was in final stages of plans to execute
major attacks against western targets and potentially the U.S. homelands.
So, that was a big part of the justification for acting the way we did this
week, strongly this quickly, the threat that he is talking about right
there, has that threat now been neutralized because of what the United
States did this week?
HARF: Well, he is talking about, just to be clear, the Khorasan group, not
ISIL. So, we took separate actions against each of them.
HARF: Obviously, the direct American military action we took against the
Khorasan group have hurt their capabilities. We know there is an ongoing
threat from this group where they continue to plot and plan against the
United States. These are remnants of al Qaeda.
KORNACKI: This sounds like there were something very specific in the works
that required action right now. And I am asking you to both details. I`m
asking you this very specific thing you are talking about, is that
something that has the capacity for that to be completely neutralized
because of what happened this week?
HARF: Well, it is not a binary option here. When you look at terrorists,
clearly we have disrupted their capabilities by taking direct military
action against them. But that doesn`t mean they don`t continue to plot and
plan. We know they have serious capabilities that we are focused on. And
that`s why I think you`ll see more military action against them going
forward. And that`s why we have all said, this is going to be a long fight
here. No one day of air strikes completely takes away a terrorist group`s
capabilities or their intent.
KORNACKI: I also want to talk, we were getting into a little bit with
Ayman Mohyeldin before you came on but this issue of exactly what the
United States is doing in Syria and how it is trying to balance the Assad
on the one side and ISIS on the other side. An interesting comment was
made this week, Haider al-Abadi the prime minister of Iraq, was here and he
said this week publically in the United States, he said that his government
delivered a message to Assad from the United States that basically said,
"What we are doing in Syria right now, we do not need to worry about, we
are not trying to hurt you."
And he said, this is the quote here, I`ll put it up. This is from Abadi.
He said, "We have had lengthy discussions with our American friends and
what they emphasized is that their aim in Syria is not to destabilize
Syria, is not to have a threat against Syrian sovereignty, is not to attack
the regime in Syria but rather to diminish the capabilities of the Islamic
State and other terrorist groups." First of all, is that right? Did the
United States communicate with Assad through Iraq?
HARF: We communicated to the Assad regime directly, to the Assad regime
before we took actions there, to let them know of our intentions. But all
of these things can be true. Our position on Assad has not changed. He`s
lost legitimacy to lead. And he is not the answer for this future of the
Syrian people. The President said that again at the UN this week. You
played last year`s clip but he said it again.
KORNACKI: Right. But you have the prime minister of Iraq saying -- and he
made other statements too this week basically saying that he -- what
strikes me as interesting here is part of the strategy for United States
involves the Iraqi army. The sort of re-constituted Iraqi army. And you
have the prime minister of Iraq saying, he is OK with actions in Syria as
long as the actions in Syria are not designed to get rid of Assad. And so,
listening to what you are saying right now about how, you know, you don`t
think Assad should be around any longer.
HARF: Well, that`s not exactly what he said. We have always said there is
not a military option to remove Assad from power. That is not how this
political situation ends in Syria. We`ve always said there needs to be a
political organization to get us out of power and get a transitional
governing body in place. So, that in no way has changed. And I also point
out that a key part of our strategy in Syria to fight ISIL is arming and
training the moderate opposition there who aren`t just fighting ISIL,
they`re also fighting the regime. So, that is a key part of what we are
doing. They are the answer to the question in Syria here but we know they
are fighting on a number of fronts and it`s going to be very tough.
KORNACKI: And just the final question. If it gets to this point where if
the ISIS component of this is dealt with and -- wonderful thing, but if
that is dealt with, you have this Syrian force that`s been trained, it`s
ready to go against Assad and starts to move against Assad, I see a problem
here because right now Assad is getting weapons from Iran. And Iran is
getting those weapons through Assad, through Iraqi air space. And
apparently, the United States government has been trying to get Iraq to
stop allowing this. And Iraq is saying, no, so we have a situation here
where potentially we`ve created this force that`s capable of going after
Assad and then our ally Iraq, this nation we are so invested in, is
basically a conduit for the weapons to fight that movement.
HARF: That was to be clear the previous Iraqi government. And we worked
with them to try and shut down some of these ways that the Iran was getting
weapons to the Assad regime. We are in conversations with the new
inclusive Iraqi government to understand the threat. Those conversations
will be on --
KORNACKI: You think that policy will change.
HARF: We certainly hoped that it would change for a long time and we`ll
keep having that talk. But to be clear, the answer for the future of the
Syrian people is not the Assad regime and it`s not ISIL, so that`s why we
are supporting this moderate opposition. It is going to be a tough fight
and a long fight but we are committed to helping them because that`s the
only way this Syrian people have the better future.
KORNACKI: Al right. Marie Harf, deputy spokesperson for the State
Department. I really appreciate you coming up taking a few minutes.
Interesting stuff there.
And coming up next, why Eric Holder is leaving right now.
KORNACKI: As we talked about earlier this morning be ready for a partisan
fight on Capitol Hill this fall as President Obama seeks to find a new
attorney general. Eric Holder is leaving as soon as a replacement has been
confirmed. And he seems to be conflicted about his departure. And as
America`s top lawyer, Holder has been both groundbreaking and polarizing.
Well, there was the first African-American attorney general, he`s also used
his job to promote same-sex marriage and to protect voting rights.
And last month, Holder travelled to Ferguson, Missouri in the wake of the
riots, followed the shooting death of teen Michael Brown. In the wake of
that, he ordered a federal, civil rights investigation of the Ferguson
Police Department. But Holder is also the only sitting cabinet member
ought to be held in contempt of Congress in history, House republicans
voted to hold them in contempt, for refusing to hand over documents from
the Fast and Furious ATF scandal. A lot has happened on Eric Holder`s
watch, more than just about any attorney general in recent memory. He has
been a lightning rod for attacks from the other party. So, after six
years, what is his legacy as attorney general going to be?
And joining me now is Politico`s Glenn Thrush who wrote an extensive and
thorough and very readable, go and find it if you have any profile of Eric
I hope I have enough praise in there, Glenn. It is my way of thanking for
you for getting up at the crack of dawn and coming on our show. But also
it was a great profile. I do mean that. So, a couple of things jumped out
at me in reading it. Number one is Eric Holder, some of the politics
within the administration, Eric Holder very close personally to the
president, to his family outside of that, though, from reading your piece
it sounds like there was some friction in the administration with other
GLENN THRUSH, POLITICO MAGAZINE: Well, there was this great paradox.
Right? So, Eric Holder along with Arne Duncan the Education Secretary and
Valerie Jarrett , Holder`s close friend, who is really the only one in the
cabinet who has a personal relationship with the president. You know, it
is Friday night pizza night at the Holder house for Michelle Obama and the
kids. That is how close these guys are. The paradox, of course, is that
Holder has not until fairly recently been known for his political acumen.
And the Nation of Cowards` speech which he gave a couple of weeks into the
President`s term in 2009 was a political disaster.
I mean it may need to have been said arguably, but it came right in the
middle when they were under water with the financial crisis. So, you have
this dynamic of Obama`s largely white inner circle, his political team
really reviling Holder and keeping him off for instance off the Sunday
shows for a number of years. So, what we have really seen in the past
couple of months is this great revival and he`s leaving clearly on the
highest point of his tenure.
KORNACKI: The criticisms, the absolutely persistent criticism from
republicans, we talk about the contempt vote, contempt citation, but was
it nation of cowards, that speech at the very beginning, is that where the
republicans sort of outcry comes from? If he doesn`t say that, then is it
maybe a different story?
THRUSH: I don`t think so. I think Holder is Holder. He is a generation
older than Barack Obama. One of my favorite parts of the reporting on the
piece that I edited over the summer, was Holder grew up in a neighborhood
in Queens a few blocks from Malcolm X`s house and actually saw Muhammad Ali
then Cassius Clay visit Malcolm X. So, this is a guy who the Charles
Ogletree, the Harvard professor described as a race man. Holder has been
point guy on this issue. He sees himself, he talks about sort of the
legacy of Bobby Kennedy, but he really has viewed his role as being Obama`s
racial conscience. And it seems that over time particularly after the re-
election campaign Obama has been more willing to move towards Holder. And
I think you have seen him becoming much more comfortable as a surrogate for
the administration subsequently.
KORNACKI: All right. Glenn Thrush from Politico. I am a little sorry we
ran long on Oklahoma earlier so we have to cut this one short. But I
appreciate you taking the time joining us this morning and again read the
article, some great insight into Eric Holder and the president and their
relationship. Still head, the magazine that wants head Scott Brown as if
centerfold weighs in on his next campaign. That`s next.
KORNACKI: Scott Brown first rose to national prominence 32 years ago, back
in 1982, that`s when he was a Boston college law student, he was crowned
America`s sexiest man by the woman`s magazine "Cosmopolitan." But now
three decades later, Cosmo wasn`t exactly standing by his man. For the
first time in the 100 plus year history, the magazine is endorsing
political candidates in this fall`s midterms, and one of them they
announced this week is Scott Brown`s opponent New Hampshire democratic
senator candidate Jeanne Shaheen. Cosmo senators said they`re picking
Shaheen because of her strong support of women`s reproductive freedom
raising the minimum wage and the Dream Act.
And instead of Brown, quote, "While we wish we could support the man who
once posed nude in our pages his policy positions just aren`t a solid as
his abs were in the `80s." Polls put Shaheen ahead of Brown, the Real
Clear Politics polling average, has her up by four-and-a-half points. And
Brown who of course represented the Massachusetts in the Senate until
losing to Elizabeth Warren in 2012, has endured criticism for only recently
moving to the state. But still, New Hampshire is the most republican
friendly state in the northeast and Brown is certainly within striking
distance. So, can he still pull this off and in the process, probably end
democrats hopes of holding on to the Senate over his old friends that Cosmo
have the last laughs.
For the latest on the tight New Hampshire Senate race that could determine
Senate control, we are joined now by Jon Keller, "Keller At Large" from
Boston`s WBZ-TV. This is the guy to talk to you for Boston, Massachusetts,
New England politics. I grew up watching this. It is a great honor to
have you on the show. Thanks for joining us, John. And so, I`ll start
with the big news about Cosmo this week. I don`t know if they call it big
news, I don`t know what the circulation is in New Hampshire.
But I did look at the polling up in New Hampshire. And as we say, it is a
slight lead for Jeanne Shaheen right now. There does seem to be a gender
gap when you dig closer to the numbers there. He is doing a lot better
among men and she is doing a lot better among women. I don`t know this
Cosmo endorsement itself but the idea of women`s issues hurting Scott Brown
in New Hampshire, is that something you are seeing?
JON KELLER, WBZ-TV NEWS POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes. I prefer to refer to it
Steve as the all important Cosmo endorsement. I mean, I don`t think
there`s a whole lot of Cosmo readers in New Hampshire, but women and the
women`s vote and general related issues are important in this race. No
question about it. Just look at the way New Hampshire likes to elect
women. All the federal office holders plus the governor are women. So,
there is about a 12-point gender gap in the latest New England college
poll, that`s certainly better than the gender gaps you ordinarily see in
northeastern states for republicans. So, you know, this race is definitely
within striking distance for Brown regardless of how the Cosmo endorsement
KORNACKI: How about the issue of carpet bagging? I mean, U.S. senator
from Massachusetts until 2012 moves to New Hampshire in 2014, he`s running
for the U.S. Senate there. I know New Hampshire is a state with a lot of
Massachusetts transplants. But obviously, this is something that has got a
lot of attention. Has that hurt him in New Hampshire?
KELLER: It doesn`t appear to, have in fact, I think it has been a waste of
time for the Shaheen campaign pretty much. Keep in mind, close to 60
percent of the voters in New Hampshire move there from someone else. About
a quarter of the population are refugees from Massachusetts. So in a way
that line of argument is almost insulting to a lot of those people. And
the bottom-line with Brown and one thing you can never forget about him is
that he will not be outworked in a political campaign. He has attacked
this race as a matter of retail politics. He has worked very hard. I
think it is starting to pay off in the polls, Steve.
KORNACKI: He also got a lot of attention this week because as the
president is sort of stepping up his campaign against ISIS, you have the
Congressional vote last week on Syria. He launched an ad that a lot of
people say was reminiscent of oddly what we`ve seen about a decade ago,
leading up to the Iraq war. We`ll play a clip of that and I`m going to ask
you what the reaction is out there.
KELLER: Yes. Well, this is the --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Radical Islamic terrorists are threatening to cause the
collapse of our country. President Obama and Senator Shaheen seem confused
about the nature of the threat, not me. I want to secure the border, keep
out to people who would do us harm, and restore America`s leadership in the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Yes. So, Jon, does this work in 2014?
KELLER: Seems to be right now. We will see how it plays out. But I think
this is really the key element in the race to this point that Brown first
of all is not only jumped on an issue that really resonates in New
Hampshire. And let me just back up for a second. Contrary to popular
perception, there is not a 65 foot high wall surrounding the New England
states that keeps out ideas and political trends that are affecting the
rest of the country. So concern about security, we have seen it jump to
the top of the polls and national polling and it is happening in New
Keep in mind, James Foley and Steven Sotloff, the two journalist
slaughtered by ISIS, both have close ties to New Hampshire, Foley`s family
lives in Rochester. So, Brown has effectively hopped on that issue and
criticized Shaheen for her lack of energy surrounding the issue. And he
has also successfully linked that with immigration. His campaign was the
first Senate campaign in the country to jump on the issue of the young
refugees flooding the border. He ran a TV ad that appeared to really work
So by linking immigration issues with the security issues surrounding ISIS,
I think he has really found something he can sink his teeth into. And
Steve, it is a reminiscent of the now infamous Brown-Coakley race in late
2009, early 2010. Remember the idiot, the underwear bomber who tried to
blow up domestic airliner flying into Detroit. That happened in late 2009.
Martha Coakley wanted to see that guy mirandized and so forth Brown
effectively jumped on that issue and it helped them in that race.
KORNACKI: So, you can see maybe the roots of this strategy going back
then. Very interesting. My thanks to Jon Keller WBZ-TV in Boston for
getting up early and joining us this morning. And we want to mention
speaking of close races the Massachusetts governor`s Coakley versus Charlie
Baker, the republican, that is now a dead even race. The Koch political
report which monitors these things, moved it to a toss-up yesterday. And
on October 7th, those candidates will be debating at 7:00 p.m. Eastern
Time. It is going to be broadcast on c-span, it will be broadcast on
Channel 4 and the moderator will be Jon Keller. So, we will be looking
forward to watching that. I certainly will be.
And thank you again Jon for joining us this morning. Still ahead, Jay-z
and MSNBC. Something I never thought I would say in the same sense. Why
it is happening, when it is happening. All of the details straight ahead.
KORNACKI: You are looking live at the preparations underway in Central
Park at this hour. Jay-z, no doubt, Carrie Underwood and many, many more
are joining forces today for the Global Citizen Festival to help end
extreme poverty. You can watch the Global Citizen Festival right here
today, MSNBC starting at 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time. But first, the game show
sensation that is sweeping the nation`s "Up Against the Clock," our in-
house news, politics, current events quiz show, it is coming right up right
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
JIM CUTLER, ANNOUNCER: Live from Studio 3K in Rockefeller Center, USA,
it`s time for "Up Against the Clock." She`s the Derek Jeter of the New
Yorker, say hello to Amy Davidson. She has done extensive opposition
research on her opponents using the skills she gained working for a private
detective, please welcome Ana Marie Cox. He is not wearing his McLaughlin
Group t-shirt this time but he is wearing his McLaughlin Group socks, it`s
Blake Zeff. And now, the host of "Up Against the Clock" Steve Kornacki!
KORNACKI: Oh, thank you Jim Cutler, thank you studio audience, thank you
contestants and thank you at home for tuning in. Another exciting edition
of "Up Against the Clock." Three new contestants. One, who was the
champion last year. Blake, Ana Marie, you were runner up in your game.
Amy, you are a first time contestant. But welcome to all of you.
Let me remind everyone how this works. We play for three rounds. Each of
them 100 seconds long. Questions are 100 points in the first round, 200
points in the second, a little harder there, 300 in the third. Those are
our hardest questions. And contestants, you can ring it at anytime. But
be cautioned, you will be penalized if you give the wrong answer.
Also, there are two bonus questions that are scattered throughout here. We
will get to those when they come up. Of course, contestants you are
playing not just for victory today but also a chance to play on our
tournament of champions at the end of the year. To qualify for that
though, you must win today. So, with that, contestants, I`ll ask you, are
you ready to play?
KORNACKI: You look and sound ready. We`ll put 100 seconds on the clock.
I have the 100 point questions here. When that clock appears on the screen
we will begin as soon as the clock appears on the screen. There it is.
And we begin the game with this. Ending his final at bat of his final home
game with a walk off hit Thursday -- Ana Marie.
COX: Derek Jeter.
KORNACKI: Derek Jeter, 100 points for Ana Marie. Hundred-point question,
last weekend, a picture was taken of House Speaker John Boehner with his
arm playfully wrapped around this famously liberal former host of "The
View." Ana Marie.
COX: Whoopi Goldberg?
KORNACKI: Incorrect. Amy and Blake, want to take a guess? We`ll call it
time, it`s Joy Behar. Joy Behar and John Boehner, together at last.
Hundred point question. Tonight on NBC, this satire and comedy show
starts its 40th season. Blake?
BLAKE ZEFF, SALON POLITICS EDITOR: "Saturday Night Live."
KORNACKI: "Saturday Night Live" is correct. Stop the clock. Exciting
news for you, Blake. Not only did you get 100 points for correctly
answering that but that is our celebrity video bonus question. Here`s how
it works, we have a special celebrity guest who is going to read a famous
quote to you. You have to correctly identify whose words he or she is
telling you for an extra 100 points. This is risk free. You don`t lose
anything if you are wrong. So, with that, if you turn your attention to
our video monitor. Here is Mr. Alan Dershowitz.
ALAN DERSHOWITZ, LAWYER: Which Supreme Court justice said the following?
We must never forget that the only real source of power that we as judges
can tap is the respect of the people. Good luck.
KORNACKI: Very dramatic reading. Do you have any answer?
ZEFF: Wow! Um. John Roberts.
KORNACKI: Incorrect. It was Thurgood Marshall. Thurgood Marshall. No
penalty though. No penalty for guessing. Clock goes back up on the
screen. We are back with 100 point round with this. Launching the he for
she campaign to promote gender equality -- Ana Marie?
COX: Emma Watson.
KORNACKI: Emma Watson launched that campaign, she`s with the former Harry
Potter star. Hundred points for her. Hundred points-toss-up. The CDC
warned this week that by January as many as 1.4 -- Blake.
KORNACKI: 1.4 million, people in West Africa could be infected with Ebola.
Hundred points for Blake. Hundred points toss-up. Proposing to join the
ranks of fresh direct in peapod, the U.S. postal service is considering a
plan to start offering delivery of, what? Amy.
KORNACKI: Groceries is correct. Amy is on the board with 100 points.
Hundred point toss-up. Republican Congressman Kevin Brady said this week
that he will seek the chairmanship of House, Ways and Means Committee next
session potentially threatening the ascension of this well known Wisconsin
ZEFF: Paul Ryan.
KORNACKI: Paul Ryan is correct. Hundred points for Blake. Hundred point
toss-up. This past Sunday, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan became the
second -- Amy?
DAVIDSON: Officiated a gay wedding.
KORNACKI: Incorrect. I will complete the question. Elena Kagan became
the second active Supreme Court justice to officiate a same sex wedding.
Who was the first? Ana Marie?
COX: Ruth Bader Ginsberg.
KORNACKI: Ruth Bader Ginsberg is correct. Hundred points for Ana Marie.
Ends the round. Brings you the 200. Blake at 300 in the early lead. Amy
at zero with that incorrect answer but very much in contention because we
move to the 200 point round and this is where the questions get a little
harder and twice as valuable. Same though, we put 100 seconds on the clock
and we will resume the game with this, 200 points here according to the
"New York Times." The former senator who told New York`s Kirsten
Gillibrand -- Blake.
ZEFF: Daniel Inouye.
KORNACKI: Daniel Inouye of Hawaii is the late senator who supposedly said
there are inappropriate comments to her. Two hundred points for Blake.
Two hundred point toss-up, following on the footsteps of Microsoft and
Google, this internet search giant became the latest this week to end
financial support of the American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC.
KORNACKI: Yahoo is correct. She said it with confidence. Two hundred
points for Amy. Two hundred point tossup. After he used his podcast to
call Roger Goodell -- Ana Marie.
COX: Bill Simmons.
KORNACKI: Bill Simmons got in some trouble this week. That`s right. Two
hundred point tossup. A reporter from the "New York Times" covering this
week`s Clinton Global Initiative was followed by a -- Blake.
ZEFF: The bathroom?
KORNACKI: Followed by a staff member to the bathroom. Two hundred points
for Blake. That`s correct. Two-hundred point tossup. This defeated 2010
California Senate candidate in former Hewlett Packard -- Blake.
ZEFF: Carly Fiorina.
KORNACKI: Carly Fiorina is correct. Stop the clock. Not only did she say
she might run for president but Blake that is our use it or lose it bonus
question. That means we have here a follow-up question that is related in
some way to the question you just correctly answered. But this is not a
risk free proposition. If you answer it correct, 200 additional points, if
you answer it incorrectly, we take the 200 points away. It is your choice,
Blake. I have the question here. Can you use it or lose it?
ZEFF: I think America is dying to know what that question is. I have to
KORNACKI: I like your spunk. Here it is, for 200 points, your use it or
lose it bonus question is this, when she ran for the Senate in 2010 Carly
Fiorina was defeated by whom?
KORNACKI: Boxer is correct. Two hundred extra points for Blake. And we
put the clock back on, puts Blake into the lead, 40 seconds left, run back
with this. The president of Ukraine affirmed this week his country`s
intent to pursue membership in this international organization. Amy.
DAVIDSON: What is the EU?
KORNACKI: Yes. The EU is correct. No need to phrase in the form of a
question. But 200 points is correct, that`s the other one. Two hundred
point tossup question. As fighting persisted this week between Sunni,
military and Shiite rebels in this country, some U.S Embassy personnel were
evacuated from the capital city of -- Amy.
KORNACKI: Incorrect, I`ll complete the question. Evacuated from this
capital city of Sanaa.
COX: The capital of what country.
KORNACKI: We`re going to call time, the correct answer was Yemen. Sanaa
is the capital of Yemen. And end of the round. Blake surged into the lead
there with a nice one, with 1,100 points. Ana Marie at 400. Amy at 200.
But there is where all bets are off because this is the PHD round. Three
hundred point question here. The hardest questions, the most valuable
questions, crazy things can happen. Crazy things have happened. Crazy
things might happen. Let`s put 100 seconds on the clock and let`s crown a
champion. We would dim the lights here but we are in the wrong studio for
that. One seconds on the clock, here we go, 300 point question. As he
sentenced him for violating federal campaign finance laws this week, a
federal judge -- Ana Marie?
COX: Dinesh D`Souza.
KORNACKI: Dinesh D`Souza was admonished for blaming his legal woes in the
Obama administration. Three hundred points for Ana Marie. Three hundred
point tossup. Qoute, "I have never lost and I have always done it with a
mustache so I`m going to keep it," said this long-time Iowa republican
governor who is seeking a sixth term this year. Blake?
ZEFF: Bremsted (ph)?
KORNACKI: Say it again.
KORNACKI: Incorrect. Any answer? Terry Branstad with an n. We heard an
m there. Three hundred point question. A photograph from an LSU football
game went viral this week as it showed U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu
participating in what? Blake.
ZEFF: Keg stand.
KORNACKI: Keg stand is correct. Mo m in that one. Three hundred points
for Blake. Three hundred point tossup. Despite his lifetime NRA
membership and a minus rating by the organization, the NRA announced this
week that it will not endorse this candidate in the Alaska Senate race --
KORNACKI: Mark Begich is correct. Three hundred point tossup. Prospects
for an international climate treaty in advance of next year`s Parris Summit
seemed to dim this week when this country, the third largest carbon
polluter in the world said, it does not expect its emissions to decline for
DAVIDSON: Can I guess again?
KORNACKI: Correct answer, it was India. India. Three hundred point
tossup. British Prime Minister David Cameron says, he will apologize in
person after -- Amy.
DAVIDSON: Saying that the queen --
KORNACKI: Well, you`re throwing a lot of information there. But I did
hear the queen. So, I will accept it. Three hundred point -- oh, that`s
the end of the game.
Amy, you do get into the positive territory. Ana Marie, 700. Blake with
1,400 points. Congratulations you have won today`s edition of "Up Against
the Clock." And now Bill Wolff is going to tell you what that means.
BILL WOLFF, STAFF ANNOUNCER: As our champion, your name will be engraved
using the finest sharpie ink on the all-new stain-resistant "Up Against the
Clock" gold cup. You`ll also receive a DVD copy of the classic 1988 film
"Cocoon 2: The Return," personally autographed by Wilford Brimley. And
you`ll get to play in our jackpot round for today`s grand prize, a $50 gift
certificate to quick meal food cart, Big Town Manhattan, the only street
meat vendor in the greater 45th St. area operated by a former chef of the
Russian tearoom. I had it for lunch today. Delicious. Enjoy the meal and
congratulations. Back to you, Steve
KORNACKI: Al right. Exciting prize packages ever. So, Blake, for that
quick meat food cart gift certificate, here is your jackpot bonus question.
With this week`s resignation of Eric Holder only two original members of
President Obama`s cabinet remain. One of them is Agriculture Secretary Tom
Vilsack and the other is whom? Going to need an answer.
ZEFF: Solis (ph).
KORNACKI: Incorrect. It`s Arne Duncan. The education secretary. I`m
sorry. The street meat gift certificate is safe for another week. But
Blake, for 1400 points, you are in strong contention to play in the
tournament of champions. Amy and Ana Marie, thank you for playing. You
will both receive the home edition, hours of fun for the family and kids of
all ages. Thank you for playing. It was a great game. What do we know
now that we didn`t know last week? Our answers right after this.
KORNACKI: All right. It`s the time of the show, we find out what our
guests know now that they didn`t know when we began. We would start with
the "Up Against the Clock" champion Blake, but he had to run, he got his
kids event this morning. So, we gave him a dispensation for that. But Ana
Marie, how about you?
COX: Well, there`s a wonderful story about on (INAUDIBLE) about how the
FBI is attempting to figure out who the next school shooters are. It is
actually surprisingly I don`t want to use the word sympathetic but it`s a
really interesting stories that are getting into the mind of those people
and what are the characteristics that they have that we might be able to
catch some earlier. Sort of getting into the mental health aspect that
everyone has talked about but it`s --
KORNACKI: Ask valuable information. Yes.
DAVIDSON: I didn`t know what a good sense of humor Ruth Bader Ginsburg had
about this being called, you know, the notorious RBG as she open this and
an interview with Al this week, she talked about how taken she was by that
moniker that she has gained. I also didn`t know how bad I am at hitting a
buzzer. How hard that is to do. But yes, and I didn`t know how much
pressure -- I guess I did know how much pressure there still was on Ruth
Bader Ginsburg to step aside. And I also didn`t know how against that idea
KORNACKI: Yes. And that is a story obviously that won`t go away. And if
republicans were to take the Senate this fall, then the prospects of
getting any kind of nomination through for the next two years.
COX: I did know how stubborn she is though.
DAVIDSON: I love it.
KORNACKI: And she reaffirmed that this week. The one thing I know now
that I didn`t know when the week began because I am very bad with
remembering birthdays for anybody including family members. And I got a
text from a family member during one of the breaks. It is my Uncle Joe`s
birthday today. My Uncle Joe is my godfather, he was my confirmation
sponsor back in high school. I don`t know if he is watching this morning
but I want to say Happy Birthday Uncle Joe.
And I want to thank the Daily Beast Ana Marie Cox and New Yorker`s Amy
Davidson for joining us today. And thank you for joining us at home for
UP. And coming up next is Melissa Harris-Perry. You`re going to want to
stick around for that. And at 3:00 Eastern Time, you can watch the Global
Citizen Festival right here on MSNBC. We will see you back here tomorrow
morning, 8 a.m. Eastern. Thanks for getting UP.
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