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tv   Up W Steve Kornacki  MSNBC  November 10, 2013 5:00am-7:01am PST

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you support all the things that make your community great. the money you spend here, stays here. in this place you call your neighborhood. small business saturday is november 30th. get out and shop small. where will enda end up? the start of this sunday morning in mid-november, we're thinking a lot about rights. the senate passed a bill thursday that would make it illegal to fire someone for being gay. whether it will actually become law is an open question, but the roots of this bill go back a lot farther than you might think, more on that in just a moment. democracy means every political office is open to anyone. and philadelphia last week, a member of the whig party was not only on the ballot, he won. he'll be here on the show, a
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realelected whig. we're excited about that. laws across country are making voting a lot harder. in texas, in addition to wendy davis, a man named jim wright was told he didn't have the correct paperwork to vote last week. used to be the speaker of the house. we'll be talking about that. also, secession. a new kind of secession, not from the united states, but from individual states. people who want to be americans but think they're trapped in the wrong state. there are now some secession movements like that in the u.s. right now. do any of them stand a chance and what do they say about the politics of america right now? but first, a poll by huffington post and ugov asked americans a simple question. is there a law that bars employers from firing people because they're gay.
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it is not surprising that nearly 69% of the people in the poll said yes. there is surely a federal law against firing people for being gay. only 13% said there wasn't. but the 13% are actually right. for all of the amazing social progress of the last few decades, there remains no federal law protecting gay employees from discrimination. it is a case of history being put on hold. story picks up in the early 1970s, when a wave of campaigns to extend rights and protections to a number of minority groups began reaching critical mass. the civil rights and voting rights acts were less than a decade old, richard nixon was creating the first federal affirmative action program, the equal rights amendment cleared congress and a host of cities and towns across the country began an acting ordinances to protect gay people. in that environment, the next step was inevitable. two members of congress two democratic members of congress, ed koch and bell abza, both
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rivals in an epic mayor for race that would play out a few years later, they joined together to introduce what was called the equality act of 1974. for first time ever there was now legislation in congress to ban employment discrimination against gays and lesbians. it went farther than that, extending protections to women and unmarried people as well. housing, public accommodations and public facilities like libraries. it went nowhere in congress that year, given the tide of social change, seemed like the sort of bill that would slowly but surely work its way to passage in the years ahead. in fact, it wasn't long before there was a companion bill in the senate. introduced by paul tsongas, a democrat for massachusetts. what no one saw coming then was the backlash. brand-new, well organized backlash from culturally conservative forces. it was the pace of social and cultural change in the 1970s that gave rise to the religious right. fundamentalists and evangelical
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conservatives, many of whom never previously involved in politics. found their leader first in anita bryant, a one-time beauty queen who had become the spokeswoman for the florida citrus commission and a dabbler in conservative politics. when dade county and florida passed an anti-discrimination ordinance, bryant launched a fight to repeal it, save our children, that was the name of the group she started. she and her group won at the polls in a landslide. so she went national. other cities enacted gay rights ordinances and with bryant in a growing army of religious conservatives now engaged, those ordinances began falling one by one. >> wichita, kansas, has or had a law upholding the rights of homosexuals and jobs, housing and so on. yesterday, there was a vote on repealing the law or keeping it on the books. the vote was 5 to 1 for repeal. >> how can we possibly have a law giving special rights to sex deviants without infringing on
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the rights of our children. that's what this election has been all about. >> 38 other cities still have gay rights laws and now there is concern among those in favor of equal rights for homosexuals that would happen in wichita could happen in those cities too. >> the president as this was playing out was jimmy carter, self-described born again christian, a southerner, a man who detracted plenty of religious conservative votes on his way to the white house. as bryant's movement grew and as conservative evangelicals like jerry falwell and others began amplifying, carter to them became a turncoat. his administration hosted first ever white house meeting with lgbt leaders. social conservatives thought carter shared their values but he was far too liberal on cultural issues for their tastes so they made an alliance with ronald reagan, what was called the new right of the republican party. they drove carter from office in 1980 and elected scores of fellow travelers to the house
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and the senate that year. the idea of a federal ban on job discrimination against gays was dead for the foreseeable future. 1980s is when the aids crisis hit, and suddenly the political efforts of the gay community and allies were redirected, away from workplace issues, toward much more basic questions of life and death. climate finally seemed to be shifting in the 1990s when bill clinton won the white house, pledging to end the ban on gays in the military and to enact that federal anti-discrimination law that had first been offered 20 years before. there were rumblings then from hawaii that state might soon legalize same sex marriage. so the -- so the employment nondiscrimination act, enda, was introduced. >> today we seek to take the next step on this journey of justice by banning discrimination-based on sexual orientation. several of these brave men and women joined us here this afternoon. they are american heroes who paid dearly for being true to themselves as they consume their
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professions. they performed well, were rewarded by being fired or brutally beaten. for them, ability didn't count, bigotry did. >> this remained a volatile politically sensitive subject as enda worked its way toward a senate vote, so did something called the defense of marriage act, a preemptive effort to protect states in the federal government from being forced to recognize any gay marriages performed in hawaii if that state went ahead and legalized it. >> god created adam and eve, not adam and steve. if the senate tomorrow makes the mistake of approving the employment nondiscrimination act proposed bit distinguished senator from massachusetts, it will pave the way for liberal judges to threaten the policies of countless american employers and in the long run put in question the legality of the defense of marriage act. >> this produced a particularly
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dark day for the gay rights movement. on september 10th, 1996, the senate passed the defense of marriage act overwhelmingly and then an hour later, it rejected enda 50-49. a week after that, bill clinton signed doma. that was 17 years ago. in some very big ways, the world changed a lot since then. states are now legalizing gay marriage. half of all americans now live in states where it is the law. the defense of marriage act is history, gays can now openly serve in the military. but for protection from job discrimination, there has been no progress there at the federal level. nearly every congress since 1994 has reintroduced enda. and watched it collect dust. this past week, it finally got a vote in the senate. this time, the votes were there. 64-32, ten republicans who voted yes. it can't become the law until andless it passes the house. john boehner's house. the tea party controlled house. and here is the word from john boehner's office on this subject, quote, the speaker believes this legislation will
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increase frivolous litigation and cost american jobs, especially small business jobs. their autopsy report after last year's elections, republicans specifically cited gay rights as a gateway issue. before they'll even consider listening to the rest of the gop's message, the young voters will first want to know that the party is okay with equal rights for gays. unless something unexpected happens in the house, that won't be happening anytime soon. talk about the future of enda, i want to bring in eleanor clift, contributor to newsweek and the daily beast. msnbc contributor and opinion writer for the washington post, jonathan capehart. amanda terkel, senior political reporter and politics managing editor of huffington post.com and former congresswoman mary bono from california. thank you for joining us today. amanda, you're on capitol hill, you're covering this. maybe you can take us through quickly what exactly was in the legislation that got through the senate this week, this 64-32. there was this religious exception carved in.
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maybe explain that and explain how you see the prospects in the house right now. >> well, many conservatives who are opposed to this legislation say it would give gays, lesbian and transgender individuals special rights. that's not true at all. it says it is already illegal to discriminate against people in the workplace on the basis of their gender, their sex, their religion, their age, disability. this would simply expand that to include sexual orientation and gender identity. now, there is an exception for religious and religiously affiliated groups, so schools and organizations that are specifically affiliated with a religion, they do not have to follow these rules. it is a very, very broad exemption for the religious groups. now, so, how this will go forward in the house as you mentioned, john boehner does not seem like he wants to take up this legislation. but i've talked to congressman jared polis, the lead sponsor of
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the legislation in the house, democrat from colorado, he's confident if it is brought up in the house, there are enough votes for t right now it is about 21 votes short in the house. there are 11 democrats who have not yet come out and said if they will support this. so if you pick up them you need ten republicans. and congressman polis said he's talked to republicans who are privately supporting it, but haven't come out yet. so there will be a lot of pressure from democrats for boehner to -- >> this is part 26,000 of the story we keep hearing for the last three years. if john boehner would put it on the floor, the votes would be there. there were two amendments, the rob portman amendment that was passed, by a voice vote on this religious exemption language that mand amanda was describing. how do you think of the amendments -- do you think this has been watered down in a significant way or is this still a sound piece of legislation? >> well, look, the fact that it passed the senate and is sitting
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in the house, if they can just get the thing passed, and get the protection there, it's a victory. just get the thing on the books, and then, if people feel that the law is too porous or isn't effective or that the religious exemption is too broad, you can go in and tinker with it. but, you know, all this conversation might be useless because of one person and that is speaker boehner. unless he allows the bill to go to a vote, you know, we're all just talking. and that effort in -- that effort in the house would be for not. >> so, mary, congresswoman, you know the republican house better than anybody at the table. you were part of the republican house. what do you think is going on in john boehner's world now? what do you think the thinking is on this and what are the prospects of a republican house taking this up soon? >> first of all, you have to remember there were 16 more legislative days left on the -- in the calendar and that's it. not a whole lot is going to happen. sadly i don't know where
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immigration reform is. a lot of issues that should be moving forward, that aren't. look, i know john bane, i know him very well. i know john is very sensitive to this issue. but in john's defense, first of all, it has been a pretty tough year, i think the caucus has been very divided and brutally divided. i don't miss those conferences, i can imagine right now it is like a rugby scrum inside, behind the closed doors. >> is this something you would vote for if you were -- >> i did vote for it, yes. i'm a supporter of enda. >> what do you think -- you know john boehner a little bit. i've heard this about a number of issues with john boehner, if it was a private ballot, he would be for it, he would be fine with it. do you view it that way, he's just nervous about ticking off the right so much and losing his job, but otherwise he would be fine with it. >> i don't want to speak for john bane, i don't want to say what he would do with the bill and how he would vote, but he's been very sensitive to me, i've been pro gay rights my entire career, he came to me first, talked to me about these issues. but, you know, i'm also kind of
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curious why there are 11 democrats who are not vocalized -- how they're going to vote yet. who are they and why are they where they are and why do they get a free pass. it is important to focus on them too. because for a lot of republicans, it is a tough vote. it is going to be a tough vote, they're from tough districts. i represented a great district who is, i think, reconciled on all of these issues. but a lot of my colleagues said, so for a republican to vote aye giving a democrat a pass on a no vote, i would like to know who the democrats are. and why. >> overwhelming democratic support -- >> but it is important to say we have come a long way. we really have. whether it happens this year or next or the year after, i think we have come a long way. i hope the gay community recognizes these are victories, the direction is going in a positive way. maybe not as quickly as they would like. but i hope they take it as a victory. >> i think there is a certain amount of impatience that gets built in you start seeing states enacting gay marriage. and saying you can't have a
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federal law banning workplace discrimination, but what do you think what would it take, what do you think it will take to get the republican house to act on this and for that matter it get the 11 other conservative democrats on board. >> it is going to happen. but the current congress doesn't run out of time at the end of this year. it has another year. it seems to me you have primaries in the early next year and into the spring. after those primary challenges are over and republicans are no longer fearful of the challenge from the right, some more republicans and maybe some democrats are also worried about primary challenges. i think people are freer to act and they're going to want to put points on the board for the november elections. i think there is a possibility that this could come up next year and i look at what happened in the senate, senator john mccain and orrin hatch who voted against enda 17 years ago, each flipped. john mccain's wife actually signed a petition urging him to vote and we know what his daughter thinks.
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and orrin hatch is a prominent mormon and the mormon religion is not apparently not as aggressive against this as they were against gay rights in california pretty recently. i think religious organizations are, if not becoming actively for enda, you know, they're neutral. i think the pieces are in place. i look at this, in my lifetime, this seems to have happened with the speed of light, i recognize that people who are, you know, directly and intimately associated with this issue feel like it has taken forever. if you date the beginnings to the abza and koch proposal, and then look at the suffrage movement which started in 1872, women got the right to vote in 1920, it takes 40 or 50 years in this country for these kind of changes to happen, even though it feels very rapid for the last several years. >> one of those things you step back and say, wow, you know, minute to minute, the change isn't there, but in the big picture there are huge changes.
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>> we have been rowing that boat for a very long time. >> there you go. well, we have -- we're going to bring in a guest, a republican, the leader of the log cabin republicans, we're going to ask him about what he's going to try to do to get republicans on board with this soon to keep rowing that boat. we'll talk to him right after this. an important message for americans eligible an important message for for medicare. the annual enrollment period is now open. now is the time to find the coverage that's right
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there is two types of discrimination here we're dealing with. and one of those goes to the very fundamental right granted to every american. through our constitution, a cherished value of freedom of expression and religion. and i believe this bill violates that freedom and diminishes it.
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>> that's senator dan coats, republican of indiana, this past thursday, right before legislation protecting gays and lez bones from workplace discrimination passed the senate with ten republican votes. dan coats was not one of them. and now it returns to the republican-controlled house. joining us is gregory angelo. appreciate you joining us today. i guess the first question i would ask you is, when we look at public opinion on an issue like gay marriage, for instance, one thing that jumps out at me is the country is moving, sort of past majority support now. most polls put support in the mid-50s, maybe the high 50s. but the breakdown is stark, democrats, like 80% or so, when you look at independents, it is well over 50%. republicans, it is down at like 20%. it is the same thing we poll other questions about gay rights. republicans, it is just dramatically lower, not just with the democrats, but with independents. what is it that makes the republican party in general so hostile is the word that comes
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to mind to legislation like enda? >> well, you know, first, a couple of things come to mind regarding the marriage issue. you say the numbers are low for republican support for civil marriage for same sex couples, the numbers are growing. the fact is also that there is considerably more support for civil marriage for same sex couples among republican millennials. there is definitely a generation gap there. also, i will say that my discussions, whether it is about civil marriage for committed same sex couples with republicans or the employment nondiscrimination act, the fact that religious liberty is something that comes up repeatedly among republicans. when it comes to the marriage discussion, i'm out there front and center, pointing out the difference between civil marriage, a piece of paper you get from the government that says you're married in the eyes of the law, and then holy matrimony, the sacrament that occurs in the church, between two people and their priests and god. we're fighting for the former, not for the latter. religious exemptions are something we're pointing out in the version of enda as it exists
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now. there are a number of democrats, people on the left, organizations who are not happy with those religious protections and so what we're saying is log cabin republicans is if you support religious liberty, you need to support this version of the employment nondiscrimination act because it protects the liberties. if the democrats pass this bill as they would like to, they would run roughshod over the religious liberties. >> you believe -- take for instance, the proposed toomey -- the portman amendment, and the toomey amendment, you think they should be allowed to do that, to say we don't want to hire gay people? >> we were not supporters of the toomey amendment for the fact that we believe that the religious protections that exist right now in the bill are the cleanest and they're also the strongest. the religious protections extend the same exemptions that exist for any religious organization covered under title seven of the civil rights act to any
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religious organization that would be applicable to the employment nondiscrimination act. we have 50 years of case law that backs up the religious exemptions. there is precedent there. if we passed toomty amendment, it would have created actually more of a gray area, would have actually created more litigation. for that reason, we were not supporters. >> jonathan capehart. you mentioned republican millennials a second ago. and it made me think of the gop autopsy that we were talking about in the previous block where, you know, quite a bit of ink was paid to the fact that, you know, for the republican party, for the future of the republican party, and to capture republican millennials, the party has to -- should look to lgbt rights issues as a way of bringing in republican millennials, basically to save the party. but as we have seen with lots of things talked about in that autopsy, that autopsy has been shunted to the side, so how do you get your party to focus on
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lgbt rights in a way that not only brings in republican millennials, but brings in those moderates out there who would love to vote for the republican party, were it not so mean spirited? >> you know, i don't know that those recommendations of the rnc's growth and opportunity report have actually been shunted to the side as you say. certainly doesn't fit the mainstream media narrative that there are roadblock republicans. for anyone who says it is impossible to pass the act in this republican controlled house of representatives or the lgbt protects aions are not somethin they're looking to parx i would point out the house has already pass protections in this congress. it passed the violence against women act, which included protects for lgbt individuals, protections about sexual orientation and gender identity. it passed with the votes of 87 republicans and house leadership including speaker john boehner allowed this bill to come to the
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floor, allowed the members to vote their conscience. >> i appreciate -- i appreciate the point there, but so on this question of enda, though, if you're saying there has been movements since the 2012 election, do you expect in this congress that the house of representatives, the republican house will take up and pass enda and would you consider it a failure in proof that they did not learn from the autopsy if they don't? >> well, number one, you know, i think that the violence against women act and the passage gave us as an organization a road map to pass enda and showed me that while passage of enda in this congress with this republican-controlled house may be difficult, it certainly is not impossible. the fact is, if you have significant push from members of congress who have already stated their support and their co-sponsorship of enda and you have a similar and concurrent push among grassroots, especially among republicans, 56% of republicans nationwide say they support enda. if you make sure that pressure is there among constituents, among republicans, i think there
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is a solid chance that you will have house leadership allow their members to vote their conscience on this issue. has to be that pressure from within and from without. >> bottom line then, do you expect in this congress enda will pass the house of representatives? >> we have all options on the table right now. there are various means that we could pursue in order to see passage. we're just continuing to view the lobbying we have always done and i'm hopeful. i'm no pollyanna, but i see there is a possibility for passage. anyone that did not enter this lobbying fight thinking that we need to focus on the senate and the house shouldn't be lobbying for this bill in the first place. >> long bottom line. thank you, appreciate it. greg angelo, thank you. there are seniors who have left hundreds of dollars of savings on the table by not choosing the right medicare d plan. no one could have left this much money here. whoo-hoo-hoo! yet many seniors who compare medicare d plans realize they can save hundreds of dollars. cvs/pharmacy wants to help you save on medicare expenses. talk to your cvs pharmacist, call,
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the interesting thing is if you go back to the 1996 vote, there were eight republicans back then who voted for it. this tells us something about the evolution of the party. look at the names like william cohen went on to work for the clinton administration, spektor left the republican party, john chafee's son left, jim jeffords left the party, mark halfy was an extremely liberal republican. it is like back then in today's politics, most of the names would be democrats. now we're talking about trying to get into conservative republicans, like jeff flake, dean heller, rob portman, pat toomey, that's the challenge now. what is your sense, congresswoman, among republicans in the house. can you put a number on how much support there is on this? >> i cannot. i wish i could, but i don't know. i think it is one of the issues that until pressed, many people aren't going to figure out if they want the red button or green button. i think the hearts and minds of many republicans are slowly changing. i think people are recognizing in their own lives they love
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somebody, who is gay or transgender in my case, and i think hearts are softening slowly. i think when it is time to vote, you would see more than you expect. >> have you had -- maybe you can tell us about conversations you had, a lot of religious conservatives in the house of representatives, republican, religious conservatives. have you had conversations with them about this issue and how do those conversations go? >> i have and i was saying earlier that i don't know if i would talk about it, but, oh, well, here i go, when my stepson was on "dancing with the stars," you wouldn't believe how many people in the republican program were telling they were rooting for chaz to win "dancing with the stars". the american heart sometimes opens slowly, they don't know how it changes or when it changes, but for me to walk through the republican cloak room and hear, go chaz, we're rooting for chaz. i felt really good. i felt my colleagues would be kind of teasing me or, you know, whatever, i would be get something negative reaction, but they're very positive and supportive. who knows. >> i guess that's a lesson about the role of a culture in general. a show like modern family where
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people see the definition of family can be a little bit more inclusive than we thought before. maybe that affects the political tee ba debate too. >> the challenge of pop culture, life imitates art and i think people now do not stand up and say if you're gay, you're somehow degenerate and none of that language was present 17 years ago. you didn't hear any of that today. this was about religious freedom, and the rbleligious freedom exemption was seen as a gateway to avoiding the law. i don't think you -- the business community supports enda. so you see the powerful sponsors that were opposed 17 years ago all on the other side. >> isn't there -- this could be an inflammatory comparison, when it became -- couldn't safely politically pose civil rights anymore, states rights, states rights, like this religious liberty sort of -- the term now that is used for people who
quote
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don't want to say i just don't want to give protections to gay people, well, yeah. and that's the word shield during the commercial break. that's the shield. but, you know, cultural, you know, culturally and cultural issues, modern family, dancing with the stars, that's the first gateway where people get to see people who aren't like themselves, get to know them, even if they're fictional characters, get to know them, get to like them, and then that bleeds into real life. and then we're seeing how it bleeds into politics. so we talked about senator portman as somebody who we're not quite sure where he is on issues, but when he came out and changes his position, i believe on same sex marriage, not because of, you know, some philosophical change, but because his son came out and because he loves his son very much, they're best friends, that he decided, you know what, i love my son, i'm changing my
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position on this, and i'm going to speak about it publicly. and so the more people like that, the more rob portmans who come out and say that they -- that they have gay people in their lives who are very close to them, nothing has changed, and that they're changing their positions, which i think a lot of people expect politicians to change their minds on all sorts of issues, but when it is on an issue, something as fundamental as sexuality or you throw in any of the other sort of core issues, abortion rights, a lot of immigration is a core issue, but on something like this, where there has been so much antagonism and mean spiritedness, to see someone, to see more than just rob portman but folks all over the political spectrum saying, hey, this is a similar issue of our time and i support it and i'm going to push for it, it is fantastic. >> it takes the personal experience and sometimes that's frustrating. i remember when senator strom thurmond came out in favor of stem cell research because he
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had a child who was diabetic. so the personal experience -- >> it does fare and inform. i'll put you on the spot like i put gregory on the spot, do you think in this congress that enda is going to end up passing? >> i think it is a long shot. but talking about the personal experiences, what i think you're going to see is lgbt advocates taking this back to the home states of those lawmakers who don't yet support it and trying to personalize it. bringing out someone who served openly in the military as gay or lesbian and being, like, look, they served openly but now that they're a civilian, they have to go back in the closet because they're worried they're going to be fired because they live in a state without these protections. i think that in part was why don't ask, don't tell repeal was so successful. because you saw these patriots who had served and who weren't able to do so openly tell their stories, and that's what they're going to be doing, going forward to try to make it hit home more for the members. >> the power of the personal example. in just a few minutes, we'll be joined live by a member of the
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whig party. a whig won an election last tuesday. this isn't your great, great, great, great grandfather's whig party. we'll hear from him, we'll find out whether the whigs are ready to retake the country by storm. and if they're still mad at andrew jackson. that's up ahead. [ male announcer ] how can power consumption in china, impact wool exports from new zealand, textile production in spain, and the use of medical technology in the u.s.? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex, global economy. it's just one reason over 70% of our mutual funds beat their 10-year lipper average. t. rowe price. invest with confidence. request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment information, risks, fees and expenses to read and consider carefully before investing. [ woman ] the technology in these pads... best creation ever! [ female announcer ] always infinity. the only pad made with foam not fluff so mind-blowingly thin, you'll be surprised it's up to 55% more absorbent.
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swanson makes holiday dishes delicious. tomorrow isn't just another monday, it is veterans day. because of that, our friend patrick murphy, former congressman and iraq war veteran and colleague at msnbc, will be hosting a special hour of television just a few hours from now, right here on msnbc. >> some of the stuff that i experienced in my life is extreme edginess, extreme. one minute i can be your best friend, and all of a sudden you say hi to me and i want to tear your head off. if i drink a coffee, i feel like my heart's going to explode because i'm already like -- it is like a machine gun, but in my heart. i can't sleep at night.
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if i get over four hours of sleep a night, something's wrong. i'll see bikes lent up against telephone poles, i think, man, is that going to blow? that's what an ied is. you never know. >> that's from wounded, the battle back home. a documentary that is going to be shown in conjunction with taking the hill, a one hour discussion on veterans issues broadcasting live at noon from the national september 11th memorial in lower manhattan. but they didn't fit. customer's not happy, i'm not happy. sales go down, i'm not happy. merch comes back, i'm not happy. use ups. they make returns easy. unhappy customer becomes happy customer. then, repeat customer. easy returns, i'm happy. repeat customers, i'm happy. sales go up, i'm happy. i ordered another pair. i'm happy. (both) i'm happy. i'm happy. happy. happy. happy. happy. happy happy. i love logistics. at a ford dealer with a little q and a for fiona. tell me fiona, who's having a big tire event? your ford dealer.
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it's not the "getting blindsided by limits" card. it's the no-game-playing, no-earning-limit-having, deep-bomb-throwing, give-me-the-ball-and-i'll-take- it-to-the-house, cash back card. this is the quicksilver cash card from capital one. unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, everywhere, every single day. so let me ask you... what's in your wallet? few weeks ago on this show, we looked back at the demise of the whig party. the last time we heard from them, they were fighting ferociously with king andrew jackson, nominating genuinefield scott over their party's sitting president, they were falling apart due to internal disputes over slavery. but somehow this week lost in the mire of all of the higher profile elections across the country, a whig was elected to office. and, no, it is not the
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reanimated korms of henry clay. this is a living, breathing, 39-year-old philadelphia resident robert bucholz who won an election this week with 36 votes to his opponent's 24 to be a judge of elections. judge of elections, if you don't know, because i sure didn't, is a four-year position that puts him in charge of his local polling place on election day. responsible for overseeing equipment and procedures there. bucholz is a member of the modern whig party, civil engagement and pragmatism over narrow ideological thinking. so here he is, robert heshy bucholz, joining us from philadelphia. tell me, they tell me to call you heshy, so welcome. i got to ask you, we all read about the whig party in our history books. a name we laugh at, seems like such an anachronistic thing. why would you say in the year 2013 i want to align with the whig party? what does that mean to you? >> i didn't identify growing up
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with either the democrats or the republicans. especially these days where they -- we have the shouting at each other. to me, the whigs were a third way. they were neither liberal nor conservative. they arrived at their platform through consensus, through their online forums, their round tables that they're starting up now. so it spoke to me and it spoke to the voters whose doors i knocked on. i mean, my district is not a heavily whig district. and -- >> there aren't many of those in america these days. it sounds like you're saying the whig message spoke to you. sounds like there is actually an organized whig presence around you? are there meetings? are there other whigs in your area? or is this just like you sort of
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read through history books and said, you know what, we need the whigs again? >> no, the whigs are a real party. there is another whig that is holding office just the other side of the delaware in new jersey. it's a real established party, not one of the major parties, but their platform spoke to me and to many, i guess, many of the people whose doors are knocked on. >> it sounds like you're describing the message that a political independent would give, that there is too much bigering between the two parties, not enough common ground. are there any core issues, any specific issues you think the whig party is advocating, you want the whig party to stand for, that the democrats and the republicans aren't? >> well, some issues, some issues were closer to the republicans, some issues were closer to the democrats, but we're more of a centrist because of the way that we arrived at our platform. more of a consensus kind of
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thing. so the whigs, i guess, if you -- whigs would be what the average american consensus then would be. we still stick to many of our core principles from, say, 1848, building infrastructure, so maybe it is not ca nanals and railroads these days, high speed internet, it would be fixing our bridges. but i think that a lot of people were receptive to a more moderate centrist view with less -- >> you got infrastructure, definitely was the henry clay message. there is a platform there. thank you for keeping the fiery anti-andrew jackson rhetoric to a minimum today. i appreciate that. have to give you a hard time there. i appreciate you joining us this morning. america's second elected whig, there is another one in new jersey, robert bucholz, thank you for joining us this morning.
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i want to thank amanda terkel, i don't think she's a whig, but she's joining us from the huffington. according to the web it was either the chinese general's son or michael corleone who said keep your friends close and your enemies closer. discover card. i asked my husband to pay our bill, and he forgot. you have the it card and it's your first time missing a payment, so there's no late fee.
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i spent a chunk of my career covering politics in the state of new jersey, which gave me a front row seat to watch the u.s. attorney for the state. got to see how over his seven years on the job, he brought down democrats and republicans all over the state, top to bottom, north to south. this federal lawyer left the u.s. attorney's office, he made a run for state wide office in a very successful one, probably know who i'm talking about by now. chris christie. governor chris christie. in his new job is relatively new job, the governor approached
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interparty politics with a different philosophy. doesn't care what party you long to, so long as you are pro christie. bergen record columnist charlie stile wrote this week, upon assuming office, christie adopted a for me or against me ethos. while many of his policies have been conservative, the way chris christie played politics as governor hasn't been. if you're a democrat and christie believes you're in a position to help him, then that is an alliance chris christie wants to forge. democratic mayor of newark, check. democratic president of the united states, check. democratic state senator, union leader, party boss, check, check, check. governor christie's mo and we have known about it, we sort of have known about it for four years now. something happened this week in the wake of christie's resounding re-election victory that took it to a new level, a new extreme, if you will. his dedication to building alliances of convenience with powerful democrats in new jersey actually led christie to go to war with a major republican in his home state. amazing story, i don't believe
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it is being talked about anywhere else, a man who pulled back the curtain on what has been going on in new jersey, joins us now, charlie stile, "the bergen record," you're the person i want to talk to this morning about this, because what is happening in jersey is so complex and you explained it so well in your column this week. i want to start by explaining to people, new jersey is a democratic legislature and chris christie has gotten some very conservative things done. he's done it with the help of democrats. and you can -- you explained really well who the democrats are and how he's built alliances with them. i'll start with one of them. george norcross, the democratic boss of south jersey. tell me about him and what christie -- what the relationship with him and christie is like. >> george norcross hails from camden county, an insurance executive, and he's built this modern suburban political machine that started in south jersey, was instrumental in helping launch jim florio's bid for governor, and since expanded
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throughout the state. he's probably the most powerful democrat in the state. more powerful than some say than any elected official. and christie and he had -- christie had started fostering alliances with him early on in the -- quietly, early on in the tenu tenure, and because george norcross commands such control over an influential block of legislatives in both houses, his close high school buddy is a senate president, he also -- the leadership of the assembly, he had control there, the senate majority leader was one of his people, so has immense control over the legislature, to christie realizing that quietly -- >> what is george norcross get from chris christie as being his partner? >> the biggest thing he got was the reorganization of higher
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education, which was a long sought norcross priority. and what that did was create a new public research hub in south jersey, with a medical center, excuse me, a medical school as the centerpiece. and that's a tremendous thing not only for -- that's going to draw a lot of federal dollars down there, but it is also going to be a huge patronage and labor -- >> going to build the nor cross empire even more. >> it will cement that. >> when people think of the signature legislative achievement for chris christie, the plan -- >> george norcross delivered the votes. >> it was -- when you see christie trumpeting this whole bipartisan reputation of his, it is not because everybody got collegial in the room, it was because he got quietly transactional behind the curtain with people like george nor cross and his allies in the
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legislature -- >> there is a code to the story, which i teased there and is extraordinary. this week, after the elections, the state senate will reorganization after this week's elections and the republican leader is tom caine jr., this is the son of tom caine sr., chris christie's mentor. chris christie tried to take out tom caine jr. this week. why? >> because he -- for a couple of reasons. one is he was unhappy that tom caine was responsible for the republican legislative effort. because of a feud with steve sweeney, norcross' ally, he tried to take out steve sweeney, spent a lot of money in that, and there was a lot of disgruntlement because if that money was spent in a couple of other key districts, christie might have had a majority in the senate. >> so this is amazing. tom caine jr.'s crime in chris christie's eyes was trying to elect republicans. he was going after democrats who helped chris christie and he
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turned around and tried to take him out of his job. >> steve sweeney is a labor leader. and chris christie has been fostering a nurturing relationship with the trade unions and they're indebted to steve sweeney. and so there was a lot of unhappiness that tom caine was trying to take out, the big labor leader. so christie didn't want that to happen either. so there is a colossal irony there, that, you know, the leader of the republican party, the suspicious was that a leader of the republican party, chris christie, was doing the bidding of the most powerful democrat in the senate. that's why the -- for the first time in the senate, republican caucus in the senate, rebuffed chris christie. >> it is amazing. i think we put a link up to it, read charlie's column this week. this is what new jersey politics is all about. we talk about chris christie and bipartisan, you'll understand what it means if you read this. i want to thank charlie stile for joining me today. we'll be right back after this. for your heart, but did you know there's a cereal that's recommended by doctors?
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this is jim wright. it wasn't long ago he was the biggest fish in the biggest party in one of the biggest states in america. born in ft. worth, texas, nearly 91 years ago, december 1922, the day after pearl harbor he enlisted in the army air corps, flew combat missions and came home to texas where he entered politics and began the long, slow, steady climb to the top of the ladder. won a seat as a democrat in congress in 1954, eisenhower's first midterm, the year the democrats won a majority that they would hold for the next 40 years. at 54, election made another texan, sam rayburn, mr. sam they called him, speaker of the house. mr. sam took jim wright under his wing, showed him the ways of the chamber, set an example that wright would emulate for the next three decades. building friendships, alliances, clout within the democratic caucus, putting him in position, finally, at the age of 64 to claim the speaker's gavel when tip o'neill stepped down in
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1986. it was the high point of a long painstaking rise. that high point also coincided with the emergence of a very new, very corrosive, very personal style of opposition party behavior. it put jim wright's leadership on an immediate crash course with rising conservatives ruthless ambition. formal ethics complaint filed against the new speaker by 73 house republicans. the main charge centered around wright's book reflections of a public man. former staffer said he spent hours in the government payroll working on the book and the publisher paid wright an unusually high royalty. it didn't look good, but one member wanted to deliver a lot more than a slap on the wrist. >> republican congressman newt gingrich of georgia who instigated the republican charges against wright, claims that amounted to money laundering. wright has said he feels about grichl the way a fire high dryd feels about a dog. >> most of this stuff they dredged up and recycled and
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resurrected things in the newspapers, years gone by, down in my district. >> gingrich's confrontational politics were winning him fans in the conservative grassroots and loyalists within the house gop ranks. and he and his allies scrambled to tar wright with anything they could find. charges about his investments in relationships with texas business men, the violent past of one of his top aides. wright wasn't an angel, but wouldn't have mattered if he was. gingrich knew co-mahe could mak own career if he took down the top democrat in the house. it worked. two years after wright realized that life-long dream of becoming speaker, gingrich was chosen by his republican colleagues for their number two leadership post, while wright found himself abandoned by his caucus, leading to may 31st, 1989, wright stood in the well of a packed house chamber and his wife betty weeping in the gallery fell on his sword with one parting plea to his colleagues.
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>> both political parties must resolve to bring this period of mindless cannibalism to an end. there has been enough of it. >> the chamber applauded for ten seconds and 20 seconds, 30 seconds, they rose in a standing ovation, both sides of the aisle. wright said hoped his resignation would be total payment for the anger and hostility we feel toward each other. >> the nation has important business and can't afford these distraction distractions. and that's why i offer reassignment. >> there was no era of good feeling after that of bipartisanship and trust. things only got worse after he left. gingrich shoved his way into the top gop leadership spot and the speakership and gingrich style came to define the chamber. wright's loyalists fell victim to it including his closest texas ally, congressman jack brooks, driven from office by a gingrichite named steve stockman
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in 1994, the year of the so-called gingrich revolution. texas was changing. marching further and further to the right. another gingrich ally climbed the leadership ranks, tom delay. by 2003, delay was the house majority leader and used his muscle to push the gop to power in the texas state legislature. which allowed that new republican majority to push through an unprecedented middecade jagerrijair gerry man scheme. in that texas state legislature has only gotten more conservative and more republican in the decades since then. which is why when the supreme court struck down key parts of the voting acts earlier this year, the texas legislature acted almost immediately to institute an onerous voter i.d. law, one drawing national headlines for all the long time voters who are suddenly being denied ballots. which brings us back to jim wright. 90-year-old jim wright, 91 next
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month, understanding he needed a vote -- a voter i.d. card to participate in last week's local elections, jim wright went down to the local department of public safety office and handed over his old driver's license that had expired in 2010, and he doesn't drive anymore, he is 90, after all, and he was told, sorry, those don't meet the requirements. he had to return the next week with his certified birth certificate and then and only then get the document necessary to vote. 25 years ago, jim wright was the most powerful member in the house of representatives. today, he can just barely vote in a local election. a story of how american politics has changed, how texas has changed, and what effect that change is having on a lot of people. here to discuss this, we have ali berman, contributing writer with the nation, former congresswoman mary bono with us, abby rapoport at the american prospect, also a resident texas expert, and back with us at the table is msnbc contributor jonathan capehart.
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ari, you've been following the voter i.d. law around the country more than anybody else. the texas law is called one of if not the most stringent in the country. tell us exactly what this law does and why somebody like jim wright, why somebody like wendy davis is having trouble voting right now. >> that's a grand introduction. i'm glad you laid it out in your intro. there is three major problems with the texas voter i.d. law. first major problem is the number of people who don't have i.d. according to texas' own number, 600 to 800,000 voters don't have driver's license. right there, you're talking about a large segment of the electorate. that leads me to the second problem, it is not that easy to get the i.d. jim wright, as you mentioned, had to get a certified copy of his birth certificate, which his assistant procured for him. how many voters will go back, pay for a birth certificate, arrange to get it and then after the second time, go to the
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polls. that's kind of a difficult process. then you have the issue where there is only dmv offices, 81 of 254 counties in texas don't have a dmv office. if you live in a county without a dmv office, no mobile i.d. unit helping you, how are you supposed to get one in the first place if you don't have an i.d. and a car. the name on your i.d. has to match your name in the poll books. if it is not substantially similar, then you to sign an affidavit to vote. if that does sound like that big of a deal, but many people don't want to have to sign an affidavit. it causes confusion and longer lines. there is a lot of problems. this is only the first -- this is an off year election in 2013. the fact we had all these problems shows it is going to be a much bigger deal. >> we have this statistic here, looking at the increase in provisional ballots, 738, 2,354
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this year, that's about three times greater. but you're saying that the real effect is what is going to happen when you have real state wide election playsing out. >> there is two huge effects. the number of people who don't have the i.d.s, will they get i.d.s? walking about 3% to 5% doesn't have a driver's license. that's a huge percentage that can swing a close election. are they going to get the i.d. in time. even if they have the i.d., are their ballots going to be counted? their name has to match. how many more provisional ballots are we going to see, are the ballots going to be counted? this is why this law was blocked in the first place by the federal courts in 2012. >> as soon as the vote -- that section of voting rights act was invalidated by the supreme court, the legislature -- can you tell us that story, where this comes from in the politics of texas, where this push came from? >> where the voter i.d. -- they have been trying to pass this for years and actually it, you
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know, passed kind of at the expense of things like the senate two thirds requirement, in the texas senate. you used to have two-thirds requirement on everything, two-thirds, not just majority, had to pass a law. and they did way with that to pass this law. you had a tremendous amount of infighting going on, you know, and both 2009 and then again in 2011, when it eventually passed. and, you know, ideas for 2007. this was a big push going way back in texas. >> how much of it -- how much of it comes from the election of president obama, and the emergence. we talk about the emergence of this new democratic coalition that -- the rising demographic coalition. you look at who potentially is affected by this, in a lot of cases, members of the coalition. >> so, you know it was interesting, i was looking back at greg abbott's involvement with voter fraud claims and they go back before president obama, you know, in 2006, a big push to
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prosecute people who help the elderly vote by mail. it was almost entirely latino and african-american kind of volunteers who are helping members of their communities to cast ballots by mail, but they didn't check the right box or took it the wrong way. and they were prosecuted for that. it goes back before -- 2008, though, really did change the game and i think, you know, if you're familiar -- you covered true the vote, groups like that, that were actively going into polls with polling sites and saying, you know, we think there is fraud happening here that we're going to be able to see, that really got fully started post obama -- >> congressman, this is a big -- the theme of voter fraud and of passing these sort of state wide voter i.d. provisions is a major theme in the republican party, proliferating all over the country. i wonder what you think of that as a republican and you look at your own party, where is it coming from, where is this idea
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that voter fraud is the top issue that has to be combatted. where is that coming from? >> i'm kind of identifying with our whig party friend now. there is an answer to this. it really is important that every american who casts their ballot is who they say they are and i think both sides can gain the system and as the future goes on, both sides will gain the system. we have the capacity and the capability to actually create -- have elections that are free and fair, and we can do it, i don't see anything wrong, truly, with presenting an idea to say who you are. and i think if voting is important enough that people ought to make sure, people can prove who they are, and we can do it and we have been doing it in a way that -- the long lines thing doesn't work. more and more and more people are voting via absentee ballot. not showing an i.d. you do one time when you sign up and get an absentee ballot, get it for the rest of your life if you so choose. >> you hear what ari was just describing about what is involved in this sort of -- the hurdles this creates for people, for a lot of people out there,
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sure, you got your driver's licen license, driving around, it is fine. for the elderly population, for people -- low income people, this is a lot tougher. >> i know the one in my county, the district i represented for 15 years, always had trouble getting the ballots counted. they don't necessarily have the assets they need and in our case, they did a really terrible job. but if we ask for these things to be done, it can be done. it can be engineered in a way that people actually easily show who they are, with, you know, i think with proper engineering of the electoral system. to say it is one sided or trying to suppress a vote, you know, i don't know that's true. i do know that coming here to the msnbc studio, i almost didn't come in because i didn't bring my i.d. so shame on me for doing that, but they said i couldn't come in because i didn't have an i.d. >> i could have gotten on msnbc with an expired driver's license, i could have brought a student i.d., faculty i.d., they all would have been accepted and they know who i am, i've been
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there enough. the second thing about the fraud problem, there has been one conviction for voter impersonation in texas since 2000. this is a nonissue. there is no voter impersonation in texas. >> this is the question -- jonathan wants to get in here, this is what i want to get into this, i want to get into this in the next segment, mary, where it comes from in the face of a statistic like that. we'll pick that up right after this. know the feeling? copd includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis. spiriva is a once-daily inhaled copd maintenance treatment that helps open my obstructed airways for a full 24 hours. spiriva helps me breathe easier. spiriva handihaler tiotropium bromide inhalation powder does not replace fast-acting inhalers for sudden symptoms. tell your doctor if you have kidney problems, glaucoma, trouble urinating, or an enlarged prostate. these may worsen with spiriva. discuss all medicines you take, even eye drops.
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so pick this up, and, jonathan, first word, we'll go to you right away. >> i'm glad ari said what he said in terms of talking about their -- these voter i.d. laws being a solution to the problem that doesn't exactly exist. i bring it back to the first segment, an hour ago, about the gop autopsy and all these great things that the party said it
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needed to do. one of them being reaching out to african-american voters. basically broadening the tent to try to try to get people who won't look at the party. one of the reasons why african-american community writ large won't look at the republican party well, one, barack obama is in the white house, but, two, african-americans view the republican party as being extremely hostile to the black community. you look at the voter suppression efforts in 2012, one of the reasons why african-americans, there were long lines that african-american polling places was one, they wanted to vote for the president, but, two, they thought i'll be dammed if someone tries to stop me from voting, from exercising my right to vote. and so what you have happening here, with all these efforts, i think the republican party, they run -- it runs the danger of -- from their point of view, from their perspective, of energizing the democratic base. folks will -- african-americans
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in particular will go out and stand in line for hours in order to show the republican party that you will not -- >> i think we can put data on this. in ohio last year, where you had significant shortening of the early voting time and everything, african-americans share of the electorate went from 11% to 15% because people were willing to go and stand in lines. i wonder if you can respond to what jonathan is saying, the message that intentionally or not, the message that is being conveyed to minority voters, to african-american voters, to low income votvoters, the message bg conveyed, what do you say to that? >> look, my experiences are a little bit different. i have tremendous frustrations with the registrar of voters, in my home state, and everything. there should be no reason that there should be long lines ever. why they can't orchestrate and engineer a solution that you get to the polls and you have 15 minutes guaranteed in and out, they can figure that out, they can predict turnout models and get the lines down.
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so me, you know, i have a lot of frustrations on the other side. voter suppression, look, whether it is or is not, whether the study you say is true or not, and that was many years ago, i believe that both sides and maybe the whig party of the future will orchestrate and figure out ways to gain the system. i just believe that unfortunately those forces are out there for everybody. i think it is not fair to say it is one side or the other. >> the reason i say i'm focusing on the republicans on this is because that's where all of the energy on passing the laws is coming from. republican states, republican governors and republican legislators who are doing this. >> don't make me defend republicans. like me defending mars. >> we were talking about this during the break, there needs to be more investment in elections. and when you talk about things like the long lines, that has to do in part with the fact we don't invest in our elections machines, we don't invest in having skilled workers who we pay a good -- there is a lot of
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things we can do to improve the elections. if we want a fair voter i.d. law and we put the burden on the state to get people and i.d., the state kept the i.d. they looked up your name and there is a photo and it is you, that would be fine. i think that would get more people into the system. it is not a good thing that -- >> that would require a tremendous investment and i don't see tea party members who want to cut everything -- >> that would be the national i.d. card. >> exactly. >> two states had voter i.d. laws before 2008. now about a dozen do. and the thing that changed was barack obama changed and the quote/unquote, young people, election, minorities and that's why the first law that texas passed after the 2010 election was a voter i.d. law. the first bill that was filed in that new legislative session. they wanted to try to stop demographic change in that state. who doesn't have i.d. -- the
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hispanics, they're 46 to 120% more likely to not have i.d.s than whites are. more likely to live in counties where there are dmv offices, more likely to not drive. you have the issue in texas where the democrat graefbs demo changing so rapid ly. >> the justice department, number of other groups are pursuing in the courts, trying to stop this. i think that's supposed to be the procedure is supposed to start this month. is there any expectation how that is going to go? >> a lot of fingers crossed on both sides. i think the -- you already had -- talking about this before, we came on in the redistricting fights that texas had, that you alluded to earlier, the most recent one, all the e-mails came out that were blatant about how to kind of decrease hispanic turnout. you had the optimal hispanic
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district, one where you had extremely low turnout among hispanics, but a lot of them, so you could claim it as hispanic, you knew you wouldn't be representing that community's references. there is a lot of question as to whether there will be some similar e-mails when fact finding starts, that kind of thing, how much evidence is out there. they may have gotten smarter, about, like, e-mails are, in fact, evidence, you know, may not be something -- >> this will be a case to watch. there could be interesting things coming up in court. i want to thank abby rapoport with american prospect, washington post jonathan capehart, former up against the clock champion, i'll add that too. if you can't beat them, leave them. that's the road some deep red areas and blue states are now exploring and that is next. life with crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis is a daily game of "what if's". what if my abdominal pain and cramps end our night before it even starts? what if i eat the wrong thing? what if? what if i suddenly have to go?
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another nail biter on up against the clock yesterday, professor and msnbc resident nerd melissa harris perry
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shocked everyone by finishing in third place. it was a gallant effort, may have been able to eek out a second place finish if not for the third round question correctly answered by one of her rivals. >> plan to create america's 51st state are on hold for now after six very conservative counties on tuesday rejected a nonbinding plan to secede from this increasingly blue state. maria? >> colorado. >> colorado is correct for 300 points. >> a section of colorado tried to form its own state, the 51st state, would have been called north colorado. the new secession movement, that's what we're talking about next. a simple question: how old is the oldest person you've known? we gave people a sticker and had them show us. we learned a lot of us have known someone who's lived well into their 90s. and that's a great thing. but even though we're living longer, one thing that hasn't changed much is the official retirement age. ♪ the question is how do you make sure you have the money you need
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a blue state. this is a very blue state. but take a closer look and you'll see it is not uniformly blue, not uniformly blue. almost 40% of the votes that were cast in last year's presidential election came out of cook county. where chicago is. obama crushed mitt romney there by three to one margin. which means illinois is a very different state politically when you get out of cook county. you can see it on this map. look at all the red counties in last year's election. evingham county, romney won it by 50 points. wayne county, closer to nashville than chicago, romney won that by almost 60 points, edwards county, romney got 75% of the vote there. granted, these are small counties, ants compared to cook county, but there are a lot of them. lots of deeply red pockets that are culturally, demographically
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in state with red state america. pockets we don't think about and ignore when we label illinois a blue state and pencil it in for the democratic candidate every four years and never give it much thought beyond that. this is the other story of the great sorting out of america. over the last few generations, the two two political parties sorted themselves out ideologically and voters have slowly but surely figured it out. split ticket voting is increasingly a thing of the past. more and more voters are either part of blue america or red america. the lines separating these two americas are deep. but what happens when, say, you're part of red america, a member of the red tribe, surrounded by fellow members of the red tribe, you live in one of those counties that gave romney 8 0% of the vote last year. what happens if you occupy a small slice of red america in a big blue state? what about the opposite? if you're part of blue america, if you live in a place that gave
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obama 8 0% of the vote last year but happen to be smack in the middle of a red state. your state is controlled by a party you have nothing in common with. party that doesn't share your values, your world view, your sense of right and wrong, party actively pushing policies and goals that you believe that you know aren't just wrong, but are destructive. and you're powerless to stop it? you and your neighbors all see eye to eye, but your state isn't a swing state, never going to be. the other party has the numbers. no matter when you do. what happens then? well, on the extreme end, you get a secession movement. the headline on election night last tuesday was that voters in in 11 very red, very conservative counties in the increasingly blue state of colorado rejected a proposal to split off and form a new state of north colorado. in all 11 counties there was 40% support for secession. and in five of them, the plan actually passed. so we probably haven't heard the last of it. colorado used to be a red state. demographics have changed. now democrats control the
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governorship in both houses of the legislature. their state gets blue, will the deeply red areas stand by and take it? it is not just colorado. the washington post this week identified 11 other current or recent secession movements. conservatives in rural western maryland wanting to break away from what has become one of the bluest states in america. liberals in southern arizona toying with the split from the much more conservative north and so on. today there are fewer swing states than ever. just about every state in america is either red or blue. secession is an extreme idea, but it does raise a question. if your party, your philosophy is permanently in the minority in your state, what exactly are you supposed to do? talk about it, we still have with us, ari berman of the nation, former republican congresswoman mary bono of california, eleanor clift, contributor to newsweek and daily beast and shannon moore, progressive talk show host from the very red state of alaska and the columnist with the anchorage daily news.
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i'm interested about what is happening in colorado this week. colorado is a perfect example of what triggers this reaction, a renaks red state america. colorado, democrats finally got control of the governorship they got control of the legislature and started passing progressive agenda items. one of them in particular gun control. you saw the reaction of the rural counties in northern colorado, we don't want to be part of this anymore. >> i don't think north colorado, it is not going to happen, would be a very attractive place to live, other than great view of the mountains. this is being driven by a lot of the same stuff driving voter i.d. laws, fear of urbanization. colorado is trending the way the rest of the country is trending, becoming more urban and diverse and bluer. this is the last gasp we're seeing in north carolina of this fear of the quote/unquote other america, the american way of life, whatever that means, is slipping away and they have to preserve this idyllic 19th
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century america they believe that the country was founded on. i don't think it is going anywhere. but i think it is indicative of a broader and more disturbing trend in american politics. >> it raises sort of -- it is the issue across the country of what we see in congress, the polarization we see in congress, where there is no overlap between the two parties. where we used to have liberal republicans who can make alliances with democrats, and people in congress just split off two sides and the states have all taken sides. somebody in your situation, you're a liberal in one of the reddest states in america. do you feel a certain level of -- >> i'm on the endangered species list. >> from sarah palin's state -- >> no, sarah is from my state. i was born there. she was born in idaho or some other secessionist place. i think this is -- to see northern colorado do this and put this on the ballot, i thought it was interesting because what i see of the secessionist group and we have had a governor as part of the
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alaska independence party, a secessionist group, a pretty large party in my state, this idea of secession, also the native alaskans who feel alaska was bought out of, you know, a van, you know, in a parking lot from russia. that it was stolen by russia and then sold. they're, like, what? we have a little bit different sovereignty issue. but there is a large group of people in this country, it feels large to me, i suppose, that are -- they consider themselves sovereigns. what we saw on the ballot was a result of this sovereignty movement where they make their own driver's license, they make their own -- they do not recognize the state, they have their own court system, we just had four people go to prison from the sovereign movement in alaska who were threatening to kill judges and troopers and they were holding their own courts at the denny's in fairbanks. this is the peacemakers militia and they're in prison now for really serious crimes, but this is because they do not recognize
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the federal government and they're saying, we're sovereigns. when they're pulled over by a trooper or something because their license plate is weird, they're, like, i don't recognize your authority over me. this is the reaction. so this on the ballot is just the next step of that. >> so what is that like for you and for other progressives in alaska. i wonder if you're living in a state where you're -- the chances of democrats of people who share your basic political philosophy winning real power in alaska and enacting the kind of agenda you would like to see enacted seem pretty slim, what is it like to be in a state like alaska? do you feel helpless, like, you know, i love my state, but i, you know, this -- what do you do? >> i think part of it is is that alaska was protested to become a state because it was so progressive, that's the reason they brought in hawaii too, they seem so conservative. alaska's constitution includes privacy clause. very, very progressive. the most progressive constitution you can have in the
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country, we have. we were a blue state. it wasn't the ice age, the last time we were blue. it wasn't that long ago. and when oil came in, the conservatives came in, the evangelicals came in and it shifted the political sway there. i believe that alaska will be a progressive state again. i do. if i didn't, i couldn't live there. i think our values, you know, our progressive values match that of alaskans, but at the same time, we'll just -- we keep making some progress, but just like every other state, there is gerry mandering, all the other issues. >> these tend to be the rural voters. it is the primal scream. they're mad and they're not going to take it anymore. the 21st century version of the survivalist movement. they're hunkering down and they're voting to secede. they're not going to get anywhere because it would have to go through the state legislature and the governor, which might happen in some places but then have to be okayed by the u.s. congress.
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and so if you look at a map of the country, the red counties have always vastly outnumbered the blue pockets that basically decide elections. there has been the simmering anger for quite a long time. where i worry is if you get somebody like senator ted cruz, who gives voice to people with these yearnings and goes into the liberty movement and that it could really gain strength as an opposition movement, but i think right now it is kind of fun to talk about, but i think -- >> i don't think it is actually going to happen. also, i should point out, it is not right now there is more of the activity on the right, it is coming more from the right right now. there are liberal groups too living in very conservative places that feel this frustration and that talked up secession too. we have a couple of proposed new states, i want to show them to everybody and we'll talk more about the basic frustration behind the movement that i think both sides feel in a very polarized political country
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want to give you a taste of what some of the proposed or theorized states within states would look like and what is behind them. this is north colorado, the one we're talking about. this is what it would have looked like. they're not contiguous. giant bridge there paid for by the state, that would be the state of north colorado. this is the proposed state of jefferson. this would comprise the rural parts of northern california and southern oregon. this would be a red state. this is the same thing as behind the north colorado movement. here is a new twist. this would be called baja arizona. what you have are the most liberal areas, southern arizona, this would become arizona reddish state now, this would be a very blue state now. baja arizona they would call it. and then another one, western maryland, real creative name there, this would be western
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maryland, this is the -- that is the conservative rural republican party -- i believe maryland has one republican congressman and comes from that district out there. that is -- we're done with baltimore and annapolis and all that. we're going to have our own state. again, like the energy for this right now, i think probably not surprisingly when you have a democratic president and democrats in washington and the state like colorado is turning blue, it comes from the right. there are examples of liberals living in very conservative areas where they feel this frustration too. and like i said, to me, what it speaks to is the impossible to bridge divide between the two parties because the lines between the two parties now culturally, demographically, geographically, so clear, so sharp and so deep, there often isn't any common ground to be found. >> it is important to recognize that people are different. whether you live in soho or greenwich villvillage, you coun different things. people in northern colorado
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happen to be hunters, believe in the right to hunt and believe that will be stripped away. a lot of -- not a lot of people live in greenwich village are hunters. they choose to live there because they don't want to live in northern colorado. as an elected official, it is important to recognize people have different beliefs. my congressional district was one that had no major city. i had a whole bunch of rural areas and some smaller cities that were more liberal. and you have to treat every constituency with respect and hear what they have to say. and if they feel they're not being listened to, what course do they have but to do these extreme things. it is a mistake to think we're all one and we should all live the same way. we don't. >> but we do all want the same things. i think this cultural divide and this blue state/red state thing, this is really convenient for the media. it is really convenient for politicians to be, like, i can't work with so and so, because this is the big divide and i'll be a traitor and there is a small faction running that. bought the end of the day, people want to feed their families, they don't want to
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have to choose between health care and rent and they want to be able to, like, you know, have their life lifted up just a little bit, not be raptured -- >> there is almost this tribalism has taken hold. we talk about sort of in the wake of last year's election, there was some sort of conservative information bubble that existed, like a separate bubble that conservatives lived in, republicans were so surprised that mitt romney hadn't actually won 42 states because they were promised by the radio stations they listened to, the pollsters who appear, this whole infrastructure has been built up that sort of for red america. and blue america has it too. i'm not saying this is just -- >> but there are some issues that are 70 and 80% across blue and red america. and background checks on -- for gun buyers was one of them. i think no employment discrimination against gays,
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lesbians and transgeneral derd peop people. people see the value in that. so i think representatives can come together and find those slivers of -- >> but there is a -- >> congress is out of step with the country overall. >> the secession movement is happening at the same time that the tea party is going on and there is this broader ideology nullification, this idea that people want to nullify obama care, nullify other federal laws they don't like. i read a story about this. i feel like secession, nullification, the tea party, the changing demographics of america, it goes hand and hand, this idea that somehow the country is slipping away and you have to secede or nullify federal laws to break away from that. i think that's a disturbing trend. >> we did that with school desegregation in this country, a massive resistance. and we overcame that, with republicans and democrats and republicans in many ways really provided the real backbone to
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the federal government. >> but the tea party movement, mary, there is, i'm not saying the entire republican party, the entire conservative movement, but this tea party uprising in 2009 and a lot of factors contributing to it, but partit. and part of it, do you feel part of it is just sort of a desperation that's sort of almost like culturally and demographically the america that they knew, they see slipping away, and it's feeding a sense of desperation and sort of a siege mentality. is that part of it? >> well, you know, as you know, i was no darling of the tea party, and i was very frustrated with the government shutdown. i think it's the wrong way to go. i think the american people are right for expecting a government that functions, can be for efficient, more effective, and we have the right to ask for that. so i don't want to speak to them. i think it's important that we find a balance here. but i think the republican party right now, it's important while we're in this painful place that we're in, that everybody put their cards on the table and say what you believe in, whether you're pro-gay rights or whatever you believe in, put it out there and let the republican party find their way.
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but i want to say something to eleanor. i've been a huge fan of hers for a long time. she's talking about something right now that the media doesn't talk about. and there is bipartisanship in congress. and i know it's hard to defend congress, and i'm not going to try too hard. but the congressmen and women who go to work every day and work across the aisle and find consensus and work together, the po media doesn't focus on them ever, and i wish they would. those are the congressmen who should be applauded, those who set aside differences and work with government to have the government work efficiently. >> and when you say there are 70, 80% issues, and you talk about background checks, i agree with you, but the interesting phenomenon, and it's part of what's behind this northern colorado push, it's what the governor of colorado did with the background checks. and what would seem to be an 80, 09% issue got filtered through the cultural divide of politics. and it wasn't interrupted as, oh, this is a common sense thing. this is blue america threatening red america's way of life. and if you can't get past that,
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because they're talking about seceding over background checks. >> so he's dealing with a backlash from a small number of people that he's got to figure out a way to win. and this is more, what we're talking about is more the last gasp of a dying white america than it is the dawning of the new american movement. >> all right. what should we know for the week ahead? our panel will answer that right after this. but when my so-called bargain brand towel made a mess of things, i switched to bounty basic. look! one sheet of bounty basic is 50% stronger than a full sheet of the bargain brand. bounty basic. the strong but affordable picker upper. to severe plaque psoriasis... the frustration... covering up. so i talked with my doctor. he prescribed enbrel. enbrel is clinically proven to provide clearer skin. many people saw 75% clearance in 3 months. and enbrel helped keep skin clearer at 6 months. [ male announcer ] enbrel may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal, events including infections,
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time to find out what tour guests think we should know today. eleanor, i'll start with you. >> i'll watch for the climbdown on benghazi. it begins today with senator lindsey graham on the sunday talk shows. is he now going to back off, saying that he's going to block all obama administration nominees including federal reserve nominee, janet yellen. cnn retracted its story. republicans thought they finally had the goods on hillary clinton and it's all going to fall apart. >> shannon? >> i think this week, coming up, women across the country are really going to show up for the women of texas. they, of course, have all sorts
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of clinics closing down because of the law there and waiting on the courts there. so those clinics will be closed at least until january, until the courts look at this or february. so i think women will really start rallying for the women of texas. >> all right. ari? >> this week is the second week of the trial challenging wisconsin's voter i.d. law. there's a lot of national significance to this case. >> okay. mary? >> mine's easy. tomorrow is veterans day. make sure you get out, thank your veteran, every single veteran you know, thank them for their service. >> absolutely. and patrick murphy's special at 12:00. don't forget to watch that. and by the way, the wig party is back. i want to thank eleanor cliff, ari berman, mary bono. thanks for getting up this morning. and thank you for joining us. next weekend on "up," it's been 50 years since the assassination of president john f. kennedy. on sunday, we'll talk about that day and the legacy he left behind. our guests will include harris wofford, and robert macneil.
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but up next on mhp, race and the gop. after tuesday's elections, has the party figured out the way to make inroads with black and brown voters? that and the unnecessary roughness exposed in professional football. stick around, melissa is next. heart healthy, huh?! ugh! actually progresso's soup has pretty bold flavor. i love bold flavors! i'd love it if you'd open the chute! [ male announcer ] progresso. surprisingly bold flavor for a heart healthy soup.
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is 50% stronger than a full sheet of the bargain brand. it takes a strong towel to stretch a budget. bounty basic. the strong but affordable picker upper. and try charmin basic. this morning, my question. how do you bully a 300-pound football player? plus, the shooting of ranesha mcbride. and the woman who made feminism fun again joins nerdland. but first, race and the republicans. good morning. i'm melissa harris-perry. we'll get to race and the gop in just a moment. but first, the latest on the supertyphoon in the philippines.

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