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tv   NOW With Alex Wagner  MSNBC  February 29, 2012 12:00pm-1:00pm EST

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mitt rop any won the popular vote in michigan, but will he win the actual delegates and he is really even popular? joining me today, glenn thrush, kurt anderson, patricia murphy and editor for the washington examiner mark tapscott. mitt romney swept the two primaries but was it all good for him. the headlines, romney regained stride, an op-ed in the detroit news said that romney dodges
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dad's curse. here is what i say, a win is a win. but the dynamics of the race are unchanged and we are in it for the long hall. what do you think? >> i am with you, it reminds me of the video that went viral of the runner that tripped and broke a leg and still hobbles to the finish line. he knows he will get there. i think a win is a win. the whole story line yesterday was if he loses, if he loses, the expectations were to high for santorum feels like the loss that it is. romney has money, no message, but money is good enough for now. >> i will quote paul here saying, i pose this to you gentlemen, and kurt i'll start with you. mitt romney barely winning a primary in his home state is
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like charlie sheen barely winning a primary in a hooterss, sure it was a win but the fact that it was this close is more than embarrassing. >> is that tough. >> the narrative is such in this election and of course, weirdly narratives matter hugely in these primary races, that it's hard for mitt romney to get any traction. i mean, if he won this thing that we all thought a week ago that santorum was going to win, and romney won, does he get very much sense of oh, now, it's coalescing around him? no. and when you look forward to super tuesday, you can easily he see that not happening again. i mean, he will lose some, pick your state, oklahoma, georgia and tennessee, and then it is down to ohio. so, he can win ohio and lose the other states, it will still be he can win ohio but he lost seven states or however many he loses. >> when we look at the exit
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polling, he is still winning with the same fwrup -- groups, 48% of those that voted for romney wanted a candidate that could beat obama among those they voted 60% for romney. we were tossing around the idea that romney would kill with early voters because he was so organized. but in terms of early voters 41% of them went with romney and not only, but 35% went with rick santorum. not a huge margin. no what folks were predicting. >> he killed with nascar team openers and people with double cadillac garages, right the main thing about romney is he has done nothing. he has moved backwards i think over the past two weeks in terms of selling himself as a candidate that is appealing to people. he is winning the individual
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battles and losing the larger war, because he has not made fundament fundamental case. >> mitt romney, i don't know an income over $100,000 gets you a cadillac. again, wealthy, educated -- >> that is your demographic. >> i have two cadillacs. >> he win big about the people who care about electability. according to the "new york times" only a third of michigan voters had as their top concern electability. so this whole idea that at the end of this process, republicans will be united because they so badly want to beat the president, seems under cut by that idea. that that is not for -- a majority of anywhere close to a majority the main thing. >> that is why you have folks
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like john mccain saying it's like watching the grek tragedy. it's the negative campaigning and the increasingly personal attacks, it should have stopped long ago mccain not a stranger to negative attacks. >> i'm reminded last night, first of all, by something that churchill said, this is not the beginning of the end, but it might be the end of the beginning for romney and i have a idea that as that noted person al davis said is, just win, is going to be the romney slogan through november and i think that the real significant thing from last night is he carried catholics. those are the reagan democrats, not union households. >> what was significant to me, is that santorum has been saying all along, if we can get everyone behind a candidate that is not romney, i'm going to win this thing.
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newt gingrich did not play in michigan at all. and santorum could not get it together enough. i think it's because a lot like romney, he is becoming a worse can tate too. these guys are goi ining backwa if santorum had a fabulous two weeks we would say maybe he is still in it and it will happen for him. he had so stumbles, they are not even stumbles, it's him saying what he thinks. >> mark, you are shaking your head, do you think that romney is becoming a better candidate as this goes on? >> that was well said but you are wrong. literally i think it's astounding that romney has been able to make the gaffes that he made consistently and we are all waiting to see what he says today after the election, and yet, he is still winning. this is a guy who is demonstrating a certain
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perseverance. >> isn't it because there's no one else to go to. >> look back to 2008, this was the month when mitt romney, who the republican base did not like john mccain, doubled his vote. you know, his national popularity in the polls from 27-28% to 56%, just as a measure of where romney isn't is. yes, he gets 30 and 40%, that is a good day for romney. have we ever seen a candidate, a front-runner, a winner still who is so mwah? >> mwah-romney, we just did it, glenn. i want to, yesterday, i keep going back to this. president obama was speaking at the uaw conference and man, did he have the wind in his sails and you look at romney last night. if the romney camp is saying a win is a win, and he is the candidate, let's see him act like a winner.
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let's see vim and vigor, and we never get it. >> and the fact that romney is doing so badly a allows the president to get away with what he did at the uaw, this same guy, said he would put on his comfortable shoes and join people on the pickett line. when given that opportunity, he chose to take a safer route. if romney and the field had coalesced and the president was facing a tougher set of opponents we would be writing stories about that kind of thing instead of how this race is going. >> and man, they were not booing him yesterday. >> no. >> coming up over time santorum has inched closer to the center at debates but his rhetoric has gone further to the fringe. has he gone too far? we will ask the national communication director, when he joins us live, next on "now." [ kyle ] my bad.
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someone who i know is watching and that is my 93-year-old mom, she got a college education in the 1930s and was a nurse and got a graduate degree and worked full ty time. >> so much for all talk about the snobs that go to college. hogan chuck todd said you have the best southern accent in the race. >> i'll take that. that is a great compliment. >> we are trying to butter you up before we get to the hard stuff. >> that is what i figured. >> so, let's go to that hard
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stuff, right now. >> sure. >> your candidate said he wishes he could take back the line he said about wanting to throw up regarding the john f kennedy's line about the separation of church and state. last night he seemed to be making more of a point of women and higher education, and achievement. do you think there's been a problem with discipline in the last two weeks? >> i would not say it's a problem with discipline, but i think the media coverage has been a bit skewed the focus on the issues that they are the most excited about, and they tend to tear him down on the social issues. that is fine. we know that his message of jobs and the economy and bringing back the manufacturing sector and tripling the child tax credit are important to him and he talks about those things regularly on the stump. it just, you know, the media tends to focus on one or two specific points from the speech. last night was beautiful, he gave that speech and i got calls
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why is he not talking about social issues. it's ridiculous, that we give a speech, you are danged if you do or danged if you don't. he bring s up social issues, a they say it's too much and then he doesn't and they are saying why isn't he talking about social issues. >> we will let our audience at home know, we are showing live footage of santorum's event if tennessee right now i want to call your attention to the fact that santorum said that maybe women should not be on the front lines because of the emotions involved. he talked about whether going to a four-year college was snobby and he said that the kennedy speech wanted to make him throw up. those are a lot of bombs to throw in a small time. maybe there's some blame on
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senator santorum's part, perhaps? >> perhaps, but it would be good if you talk about the context. he was talking about women on the front line but about men's emotions not women's. his mom went to graduate school. but the fact of the matter is, if one of them comes to him and says, this is a better path to me, he knows it's not the government's role to tell them what to could. that was the point. the whole campaign has been about freedom. whether it's your decision to go to college or not. it should be your decision. and those are the things he has been talking about. and of course, he just mentioned, some networks more than most focus on things relate to social issues and part of that is because the obama administration tried to force
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the catholic church into providing contraception. the issue was not about contraception, it was about freedoms. he made it clear. the fact of the matter, several people your network, tend to focus on their idea of what he says as opposed to what he is saying. that is kind of the issue when it comes to these issues is that he does talk about so many different things on the stump. >> hogan, i can sense how loathe you are to talk about the social issues. let us discuss the senator's economic plan. the committee for a responsible federal budget estimates that the senator's plan will add $4.5 trillion to the deficit, among the points that he outlined in his "wall street journal" editorial, he talked about the laws that were put in place by obama, and in terms of cutting $5 trillion over the next five
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years, no specifics. we talked about keystone a lot. but in terms of job creation, the numbers are 15 to 50,000 jobs that will be created, perhaps the media has not focused on the plan is because it's vague and contradictory? >> first of all, i don't use the term lame stream media, that is someone else. for every poll and person you can say it adds to the deficit, i can show you a person that says it's not. just one portion of his plan, the 0% for putting funds back to the country, would add two to $4 million jobs immediately to the country. everyone that tries to get to the point of this will do this or this will do that, we have someone who says the opposite.
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this country has a problem with the manufacturing sector. he has been clear about that and clear about articulating a plan to bring jobs back to the country and he will outline bold visions to get it done. if you'll notice, the things he talks about on the stump, he is clear to articulate what can be done with the stroke of a pen and what can be done through the congress and what should be done when it cops to amendments to the constitution, he is not over reaching and promising you the moon, he is telling you what he can and will attempt to do. >> i want to open it up to the panel a bit. it has been me and you back and forth. we talk about santorum and his economic message and i want to know what you think. >> i have a question, i was interested, hogan, last night during senator santorum's concession speech in michigan, when he hit so hard as he held up his piece of oil shale rock, what he characterized as obama's
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administration to all kinds of drilling and energy exploitation, which seemed to be about a different administration than this one. this administration has row opposed opening up -- proposed opening up off shore drilling and opening up relatively, you know, new federal lands for oil and mineral exploitation, so, i understand how there are disagreements about the rate to which it should be done or the extent it should be done but the way it was portrayed as if it was a he left wing environmentalist that the president has not been. >> the president has talked about drilling for brazil, not us. >>s yes he has. >> i meant the pipeline was to go through montana, at every turn, there have regulations that have crippled the energy
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industry and has seen gas prices soar since coming into power and at every turn, whether it's solyndra or whatever green industry, green industries and energy is great, it's a fine thing the problem is it's not right around the corner. we are a saudi aarabia of coal. we have so much we can do these things now in this country. we can bring energy prices down now in this country, and the president has opposed it at every turn, you can say, oh, no, no, i'll expand this much or that much. it has been clear that he wants to open any and all forms of energy and production to get the economy going for sure and get the energy prices down. when you rely on foreign countries it's a problem for the economy as it relates to our energy and it's a problem for national security. and so, it opens up all kinds of problems for this country, and this president, he is the greenity president.
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he has the same green czar as the president had. >> i want to bring in mark tapscott, go ahead. >> hogan speaking as the southerner, i have been in new york all day today and you are the first person i heard that i can understand. >> i was just thinking that. now i get it. >> okay, all right. >> now that i buttered you up. question, how in the world did you guys lose catholics in michigan? >> that is funny. rick santorum -- >> i'll bet. >> funny? >> rick santorum is running for president for the first time. mitt romney ran for president just three years ago, and the guy still cannot win his home state. yeah, he wins a few catholics here and there, he has huge name id, santorum's issue is the fact that early on in the campaign, no one knew who he was and just now the media is covering him and just now we are starting to
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understand what his views are on the issues. msnbc has been no help on understanding the issues i might explain. >> we have you to explain what his views are. >> too little, too late. alex. >> oh. >> but mark is right, we are focused on obviously getting every vote we can. catholics are a big part of the voting block. but, you know, catholic voters want to know what you are going to do for the country. you can compare it to obviously mitt romney's mormon base, which voted 91% for him out of the box. catholics have to be shown that they have someone that wants to get them back to work and we are working to prove that. >> we look forward to hearing more about the senator's specifics, economics and otherwise. thank you for your patience and joining the program. hogan gidley from the santorum
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campaign. after the break, out with the old, in with the newt. gingrich did not have an impact on the primary last night but he may have his eye on a bigger prize. [ male announcer ] for a better-looking tomorrow. vicks nyquil cold & flu. the nighttime sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching, fever, best sleep you ever got with a cold...medicine. ♪ i toog nyguil bud i'm stild stubbed up. [ male announcer ] truth is, nyquil doesn't un-stuff your nose. really? [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus liquid gels fights your worst cold symptoms, plus it relieves your stuffy nose. [ deep breath ] thank you! that's the cold truth! how they'll live tomorrow. for more than 116 years, ameriprise financial has worked for their clients' futures. helping millions of americans retire on their terms. when they want. where they want. doing what they want. ameriprise. the strength of a leader in retirement planning.
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small businesses that want to grow use 4g lte technology from verizon. i wonder how she does it. that's why she's the boss. because the small business with the best technology rules. contact the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 1-800-974-6006. >> we will not be able the to talk at any great length in this block. let's talk about newt gingrich, he said he invision winning or a strong showing -- >> i'll take that bet. >> you will? >> he will win one, maybe, georgia, he will win one. >> you see no possibility that newt is going to be the alternative to mitt? >> yeah, no. i mean, i think i would win the best hair on the panel contest before. he might compete in tennessee, but santorum has the man he will
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and the money coming in. >> sheldoneddon adelson gave an bit of money to gingrich. he cannot stop giving. >> newt is expected to do well in the georgia and tennessee, he could lose tennessee at 3/4 evangelical. the evangelicals love santorum. because he is more of a evangelical's evangelical. >> and the cancellation of the debate hobbles newt. >> i refuse to give up the dream. gingrich campaign, if you can hear me. coming up republicans are reeling from the retirement announcement of congress woman snowe and dwyre, next on "now." [ male announcer ] this is lois. the day starts with arthritis pain...
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california republican david drier said this morning that he is not running for re-election, he is the second republican to announ announce retirement plans in the last 24 hours. olympia snowe announced that she is leaving the senate at the end of the year. i'm not going to make a snow pun. this is a big deal. is it not? >> it's a big deal. >> you are in congressional wheelings and dealings in that you covered it for a long time. it sounded like the republican establishment was caught off guard. >> because she did not tell them about her decision. >> you have a republican behind you shaking his head. continue. >> i'll continue. the senate and house, it's a lonely place to be a moderate. it's very, very difficult. i was once told by a democratic leadership aid that moderation will be tolerated but not
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rewarded. you become a moderate and remain a moderate at the peril of your career. you'll not be in the leadership and you'll be punished along the way. you'll be let out on your leash but the back will be turned. so it's very, very difficult. she got hammered after she voted to push the health care bill forward out of committee. she has had a tough couple of years. i do not blame her. she said that she has to ask how much more will i get to be able to do, and the answer is not very much in a congress that is built like this. ben nelson made the same calculation. >> a lot of blue dogs. >> you cannot get it done anymore if congress functions this is way. >> i find it frustrating that an atmosphere of my way or the highway ideas have been in the our campaigns and in our governing institutions, i do not expect the partisanship to change over the short-term. that is not a particularly rosie prognosis. >> alex, believe me. a number of my conservative friends have been praying for
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her to leave. >> that is why she is leaving. that is why. exactly. >> but praying -- go ahead. >> this is not an important event. she votes with the democrats much more often than she does with republican. >> she votes with the republican leadersh 3/4 times. >> she went from issue to issue. and there have been plept of republicans in the past who did that and we had democrats much to the chagrin of the leadership like lieberman and ben nelson. what is fascinating, no tears were shed for ben nelson's departure but a lot of tears were shed for ms. snowe. she can be convinced and spoken to in a civil way. >> and you did not have to give her 400 million dollars to vote
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for obama care. >> it's important to talk about what she voted on, we of course are highlighting the swing votes. she favored abortion rights and repealing don't ask don't tell. and dodd-frank, when we talk about moderation in the republican party, you look at it in terms of numbers, there's a book coming out that shows that the republican party has really over time become more ideologically extreme than the democratic party and the gallup poll reflects. 39% of democrats identify as liberals. it's no surprise that it's hard for olympia snowe to be in congress. >> over time, i watched nebraska republicans leave their party as they felt round the turn of the century that it was being taken away from them by as they called
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them the black cats. i experienced that. there's no denying that when people like bruce bart leglett out and call the current republican party insane, yes, there's partisanship and poll arization on both sides and it's hard to be a democratic moderate as well. let's be serious about which side has moved further to the respective side. >> david brooks not known to be a wild, flag burning liberal yesterday in the pages of the "new york times" talked about the holocaust when he said, they came for the conservative republicans and then the rockfellar republicans, that is a serious indictment of the republican party. >> i'm surprised he does not mow the law, the proximity to a hitler reference in an argument is perfect measure of when it will be listened to. >> it was a jokey thing.
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>> it was jokey but the feeling of of real. >> the rhinos who we liberals pay attention to. >> if you look at the presidential race, mitt romney would have gotten nominated eight years ago, he is just are citizenship -- he is just crippled on his way there. this party is demanding purity. the moderates lose for re-election. >> and mitt romney would not be contorted like a pretzel on a lot of the issues had the party not shifted under minimhim. a lot of positions he had would be consistent. >> not forget, context for these studies. >> the american enterprise institution. >> conservative. but the context as a president,
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america is a center-right country. 70/30 is the percentage. >> republicans say that. >> where is the center part of today's republican? >> that is what jeb bush has been saying. where is the cent center? they have not held. >> i'll leave you with the words, of maureen dowd, he she calls it a greek tragedy, the gop's id is unbridled, the horse has thrown the rider and the dark forces are bubbling. moderates, women, gays, hispanics and blacks, even the president are being hunted in a dangerous game. it's an epic battle and we are not going to see resolution any time soon. after the break, congress is challenging the obama administration's mandate on contraception, should employers be able to opt out of health care services they find
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cover for me. i have an audition. dryer. the measure would force women to surrender control of their health decisions to their boss. that is not merely quaint or old fashioned, it's dangerous and wrong. >> that was senator schumer just a couple hours ago, blasting a proposal to repeal the contraception man tate. a vote on the blunt amendment is expected tomorrow. 20 million women could lose access to the health care services under the amendment what is going on here? >> who knows and blunt trying to be the next senator majority leader? that is the question. when you look at the republicans and what they are cdoing, the
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half life is 30 seconds. the republicans had the president where they wanted him on the religious freedom question, that was fair with the catholic church but now they pushed it so broad, nobody knows what it means. any employer can reject any service for any reason that goes against their moral purposes. i am against black people or smoke. >> or certain other religions. it's crazy. >> it's part of the first amendment. it's you do not have freedom of religion in the country. that's the issue. >> isn't it just an effort to under mine the president's health care law. >> the blunt amendment will not pass and everyone in the senate knows it, but the were purpose is to give moderate democrats a way of appearing to vote against the mandate when in fact they are in the final analysis going to support it. that is what is going on. >> the other thing is blunt, who i remember when i started covering the hill a few years ago was regarded as one of the more moderate deal making
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republicans. >> and still is. >> so i believe it's also to make blunt conservative if he decides to run for leadership. >> you are a resident there at the white house, what is the word from the white house? >> they literally could not screwed this issue up more. in who is they? >> the white house. the west wing bobbled the thing. they let the archbishop dictate the terms of the debate. and they cannot believe their luck that the republicans went craze about it. it looked like a wedge issue for the obama campaign among catholics but they cut their deal, which was a fairly transparent do nothing kind of deal a couple of weeks ago, and they totally got away scott free on this and the republicans have continued to wage on it. >> they are assisted at what is happening at the state level
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too. a by was passed to require ultrasounds for women seeking abortions. they have amended it slightly insofar they do not have to have the transvaginal ultrasound, it remains unclear to me -- >> do you have to say that? >> i tried to avoid saying it. but sometimes it's necessary to say. but, you know, the point of the invasive ultimate tra sound is to show the heartbeat and you cannot do that at a certain point in a pregnancy without doing it, why mandate it? >> why mandate a procedure like that in the first place? what is going on here and when do the republicans get out a calculator and figure out that 55% of people that vote are women and do not want to be told that anything transvaginal will be mandated. >> it's important from the democrats point of view, it
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looks like brarer rabbit, it is turning what is a bad issue of them into this "you people are freaks." >> and at the same time i'll direct this to you, mark, there are other states considering the same bill. alabama, idaho, mississippi, pennsylvania. people are doubling down on it. >> absolutely. listen, i love watching you guys talk about it, you are so confident and so wrong. >> i love hearing you talk about -- >> that is what you are talking. >> obama -- >> have they stolen your food or are they hungry, had -- which is it about, you are hungry. >> obama carried catholics, he will not carry them. >> do you think it's a potent long-term strategy? >> i think that glenn is right,
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the white house totally blew it on this issue. >> what about part b of the statement, that it's working in the favor -- >> i cannot agree with him all the time. >> or any time pareapparently. i do not understand the reasoning and i think of the opposite camp, it ultimately hurts republicans. >> the exit polling yesterday from michigan is that catholic voters are pocket book voters. of all the states that you mentioned none of them matter in terms of the map except pennsylvania. if this becomes an issue in pennsylvania where barack obama is weak in the western pennsylvania among white catholic voters, this will help the obama folks. >> that is what you guys don't get. it's already an issue in pennsylvania as a civil liberties issue. >> forcing a government imposed religious view. >> but this is a government
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imposed vaginal inspection. >> mark will leave it there what now? two top members of congress say the deadly ohio shooting in the school will not change gun regulations. that is next on "now." coming up next on "andrea mitchell reports," our exclusive interview with republican srnts olympia snowe, the long time maine senator will join me. her announcement may well be the most important political story, it may mean that the democrats have a better shot at holding on to the senate. we will be back on "andrea mitchell reports."
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and that god has forgiven me of sins. >> time for "what now" that reverend graham questioning the president's faith. today, graham is apologizing for his remarks in a letter to faith leaders. i regret any comments i have ever made which may cast doubt on the faith of mr. obama, the president said he is a christian and i accept that. glenn, is this the end of the debate? >> no. because all of us, i can guarantee it in the next six months will be getting the e-mails that we get when barack obama running for president. >> what say you? >> i am not surprised that he apologized, hes knows that we are saved by grace and not by works and therefore month man can judge whether or not his grace is sufficient. >> and that is -- thank you for the --
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>> well put. that was well put. >> i want to turn to what is happening vis-a-vis ohio on the latest there. speaker john boehner said new gun control laws are not in the works after a teenager went on a shooting spree that killed three students in boehner's home state of ohio. it would not lead to new legislating of gun rights. these tragedies are sad but the realty is that a gun control bill is not going to go anywhere. there's no gun control bill that would stop him from having a pistol. it's unconstitutional, it was a legal ownership of a gun. people like to say, it's horrible and it is. move o it's not a reason every time this happens to say, why can't we have gun control, in the case, what do we mean by gun control? you know we would have britain and outlaw guns to keep crazy
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kids from shooting their fellow students. >> if the fight is yeah, loosening the fairly loose gun control laws in the united states, but, doing anything to stop it? that is just, that should not be in the conversation can, because we cannot do anything to stop it. >> i think it's, i think it's fascinatie ining it came out, i shows what the poll particul-- of the gun issues. they have vulnerable members in the senate and have a huge up hill battle, they do not want to go near the nra, and they would get clobbered over this. it's one of the few times that congress does not do something reaction that may or may not solve the problem. >> it's stunning coming from
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hoyer, it would have been an opportunity to cut back on high round magazine clips, nothing done. >> it is not coming from pelosi, that is when hoyer is coming forward. >> this is romahm emanuel's goln rule, was to let these guys hold on to their guns and do not i can it an issue. >> -- do not make it an issue. >> we will not have to choose between the president and the nfl, the nfl will schedule their event a day earlier to keep from conflicting with the president's national convention speech. >> it's because the obama administration that bumps up and moves away from sporting events. >> how about that? the nfl, something we can with all sort of be happy about. right? please? mark?
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>> the real story is that obama wanted them to switch it so he can make the first game. >> there's always a story. >> what a snob. >> thanks again to my panel, that is all for "now," i'll see you back here tomorrow at noon eastern and 9:00 a.m. pacific, when i'm joined by former rnc chair, michael steele, and the lovely patricia murphy, back for round two. until then, follow us on twitter, "andrea mitchell reports," happy leap day to you, andrea. >> same to you, coming up next, our interview with maine senator snowe, senator patty murray will be here on one of those renewed debates the gender war continuing. and looking forward to super tuesday. join us in a few minutes. ncer ] water was meant to be perfect. crisp, clear, untouched. that's why there's brita, to make the water we drink,
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right now, on "andrea mitchell reports," exclusive, senator olympia snowe, first interview since announcing she is retiring from congress, plus. >> we won by enough and that is all that counts. >> mitt romney survives a squeeker in michigan, and now he has to prove himself on super tuesday, his turn out not a good sign. >> rick santorum is down but not out, after falling short by three points in romney's home state. >> a month ago, they did not know who we are. but they do now. >> we came into the backyard of one of my opponents. and in a race that everyone said, well, just ignore, you'll have no chance here. and the people of michigan looked into the hearts of the candidates and all i have to say is, i love you back. >> and after sitsing out michigan and arizona, newt gingrich is banking on a southern strategy and


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