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tv   NOW With Alex Wagner  MSNBC  November 12, 2013 12:00pm-1:00pm EST

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a potential clinton christie matchup shows clinton leegding by 10 points and leading in all areas of the country. while he may have attracted african-american support in the garden state, it is not translating to a national race. perhaps when chris christie isn't simply repping for chris christie but acting as a representative for the grand old party. anemic 4% of african-americans worldwide. joining me robert costa, nbc news political reporter casey hunt. co-founder of fenway strategies and former director of speechwriter for president obama, john fab ro and inimitable elegantly effortless jonathan capehart. as far as gop and chris christie. what do you think accounts for the fact that christie won 51%
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of latino vote, 21% of african-americans in new jersey, much better than anyone has done in his party with the electorate. nationally he's nowhere with minority groups. >> i think christie can get there nationally. he's been focused on new jersey. his whole point in 2013 is to show republicans, especially in a blue state, can build a different kind of coalition. he's going to have to show in early steps towards 16r 2016 does he focus on iowa or florida and building a tent going forward. >> quoting richard cohn. i personally think the christie problem is the brand of the gop is tan i should, being a representative is difficult. richard is not making it easier. i will read the quote of the morning. jonathan, we're going to ask you so prepare yourself to talk about your colleague in just a couple of minutes. he leads by saying, today's gop
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is not racist, as harry belafonte -- that rabble rouser harry belafonte -- alleged about the tea party but it's trouble bowed the mainstream of avant-garde. people with conventional views must suppress a gag reflex when considering the mayor elect of new york, a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. emphasis, mine. should i mention bill de blasio's wife used to be a lesbian. this family represents culture challenges that enveloped part but not all of america. to cultural conservatives this doesn't look like their country at all. in other words, to bigots, intraracial marriage is a scary thing. >> he's got his finger on the pulse. >> he writes it at a time when the president of the united states is the son of a biracial
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couple. he's talking about iowa won by big margins. it's pretty crazy. >> what amazes me about this jonathan, the thesis, today's gop is not racist, then richard cohen says it's not racist then goeston to discuss a decidedly racist view. >> in the paragraph before he's making a comparison to dixiecrats and tenor and tone before today's seemingly more enlightened politics. that being said my colleague richard cohen, who i like and respect, what he says after that is just -- it's reprehensible. the gag reflex. i tripped over that sentence several times trying to figure out what exactly is he trying to say. richard is no tea party conservative right wing card
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carrying person. he's a manhattan liberal. this and a few other columns he's written has me wondering what's going on here. >> i also think, just in terms of the wording here. he's trying to cloak what are incredibly bigoted views and sort of normalize them in the rhetoric of this is the traditional view of the world, and this is the avant-garde view of the world. >> his view of the traditional sense of the world, traditional in that it was true maybe 50 or 60 years ago. >> i feel like members of the gop do that in some ways to create safe harbor for antiquated and some would say bigoted views about the world. anyway, lets move on. i obviously have a serious problem with this. when we're talking about christie and the future. ross makes a point and i would love to get both of your thoughts on this. it's not so much the social issues the gop has to worry
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about. it's the economic views. the idea, it is rights donors are loathe to acknowledge their party's biggest problem isn't gay marriage or immigration or disastrous government shutdown but a brand identity submitted by mitt romney's persona and 47 remark as the handmaden of big business and the rich. >> you're seeing some recognition of that very reality from others who are sometimes mentioned as 2016 contenders. if you listen to any floor speech marco rubio made in the last six months it's about the american theme and opportunity. that's the theme he's outlining. rick santorum was beating this drum progressively. he was running against romney but you can expect him to do that. that dichotomy, you're seeing it with democrats on the left. this idea that elizabeth warren might be the challenge to hillary clinton because clinton is somebody who is friendly with wall street and warren is somebody who could oppose that. it's clear the idea of in come equality is something that's going to define the next few
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years of our politics. >> i wonder how the gop squares that circle insofar as paul ryan loves talking about opportunity and mobility and freeing people from the shackles of food stamp assistance and health care, whatever the program is of the day that he's vilifying. when it comes down to putting forth a budget, the u.s. conference of catholic bishops said what he had put forward was not a catholic plan, was out of line with catholic ideas about poverty and help and was very much at odds with the sort of moralistic tone paul ryan and other republicans tried to adopt in last years knowing they have the problem with stigma of upper class money bags, we don't care about what happens to the rest of the world party. >> i think republicans are quite aware of the persona when you look at polling and public perception. i don't think principles will
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change, 2014, 2016, where it stands on tacks, sbiltment reform. when you look at paul ryan, went to miami, ohio, come out of a blue-collar manufacturing-based states. that new style is going to be put on top of the gop's traditional policy. >> sarah palin and ted cruz were asked -- rick perry asked about chris christie, asked to endorse him. nobody likes to endorse a potential rival. you get a sense there's a fundamental split behind the kind of politics chris christie practices and the kind of politics ted cruz and sarah palin and rick perry. >> he says on paper they are similar to ted cruz and sarah palin. he's pro-life, supportive of traditional marriage. on the economic issues he's right in line with the american line. the presentation, that's what christie is talking about.
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something like divided government christie talks about the need to govern rather than combative. that's the battle, tone, style, perception of government. >> getting rid of combative would seem to me like getting rid of the donkey or elephant, it's so much a part of the party at this point. i do want to touch on something robert brought up, the idea of income equality, how much it will ab factor in 2012. the president talked recently a lot -- a big message in 2012, we talked about minimum wage, john podesta starting a think tank devoted to income equality. the headlines about liz warren on the campaign trail or presence, steering left in terms of talking about the issues that divide us and specifically focusing on the role of big business and the top of the income ladder. how uncomfortable a topic will that be for hillary clinton. >> i don't think at all.
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i'm confused with the foreign stuff. we associate her and talk about equality. marco rubio, republicans are going to have to talk about inequality, democrats are going to have to talk about inequality. the biggest issue with the economy and middle class voters. minimum wage is the perfect issue to run on for democrats. you take polls about minimum wage, 58% of republicans are for minimum wage, the ballot initiative cleared new jersey by a huge margin. i think that's going to be a sleeper issue for any democrat should run on that. i think republicans are going to need to find a policy that speaks to the middle class and speaks to inequality. >> whatever that may be. >> just find one. right now it's rolling back -- aca is the only economic policy of the party and that's not going to fly. >> kacey, i have to say, if hillary clinton decides to embrace, wrap her arms on income equality, some on the left would say bill clinton didn't have a
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progressive monetary policy. aides lot of things that angered democrats, vis-a-vis the social safety net. it could be tricky for her in terms of the clinton record and where the country is now. >> that's certainly the case. the contacts hillary would be coming into, different when bill clinton was elected. coming off long time democratic majorities the. the mood of the country was different. here we have this rising income inequality. the president doesn't like to talk about the fact it has risen so sharply during his presidency. we can argue sometime about whether that's his responsibility. we are going to see the minimum wage. the white house pushing senate to push on the floor. harry reid considering putting a bill on the floor that would raise minimum wage, an attempt to force the issue to the forefront, republicans say this isn't what we want to do. you know who supported indexing minimum wage to inflation was
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mitt romney. he to retract that statement. >> we talked about that. >> ip come inequality is something democrats try to run on all the time. john edwards to america was trying to make this an issue and it went nowhere. it always went nowhere until election day this year when bill de blasio was elected mayor of new york city. >> despite the gag reflex. >> talking about income inequality. it will be interesting to see how well he's able to take his campaign and turn it into policy. >> indeed bill de blasio represents so many things to so many people this season. we have to take a break. as the calendar nears 2014, hard to pass legislation if house republicans are unwilling to, you know, legislate. we'll discuss roadblocks and the piecemeal approach next on "now."
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business, labor, law enforcement, faith communities, they all agree that the time has come to pass comprehensive immigration reform. lets get this done. send me a comprehensive immigration reform bill in the next few months and i will sign it right away and america will be better for it. >> it has been nine months since president obama called on congress to send him an immigration bill right away. it's been five months since house speaker john boehner said we will have an immigration bill by the end of this year. >> i think by the end of the year we could have a bill. >> one that passes the house,
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passes the senate, signed by the president. >> no question. >> no question. it has now been four and a half months since the senate passed a bipartisan immigration reform bill. if the prospects for reform by the end of the year have gone from no question to highly unlikely of the reason, mostly because the gop has decided rather than offer a path to citizenship for 11.7 million people, grow the u.s. economy and move their party well spot 21st century, republicans have decided it's better to curry favor with kamikaze caucus and shut it down. the white house isn't throwing the tall in yet meeting with pro reform conservatives in a hope that will move house leaders without scaring them off. last week house whip kevin mccarthy told immigration advocates there's not enough time let this year to deal with the issue. yesterday in an interview with jorge ramos, republican
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congressman balart, key negotiator was grim. >> i don't think if it gets done by early next year, it's potentially dead. >> if there's any residual hope the house will take up the bill, speaker boehner put that to rece when he joked the house shouldn't even remain in session next month because no actual legislating is likely to happen. robert, what happened between john boehner sitting down with george stephanopoulos and where we are today. >> it was eager privately to do something with immigration reform. when i talk to them now, the whole leadership structure, aides, members, are bruised by what happened during the fiscal showdown in the fall. the members aren't behind boehner in a strong way. they are not willing to go with him on the edge. that's crippled the process. >> the leadership may be bruised, kasie, but the party is hemorrhaging on the issue of --
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we just finished talking about its issues with minority voters but specifically with the hispanic community. everybody acknowledged that was the takeaway from 2012, they have got to do something on immigration reform. now john boehner is saying why bother coming to work, we're not going to get everything done. >> you're talking about the establishment apparatus, which has not proven they have very much power in the course of the last couple of months. you have to think about it. it's really testament to how weak boehner is in comparison to the right wing of his caucus. it used to be if the afl-cio and chamber of commerce were on the same side of an issue, it went through. the fact we have that with immigration and it's still stuck. businesses continuing to lobby, hispanic groups are continuing to lobby and nothing is happening is really remarkable. >> some accounts will put some blame for this process going awry at the feet of the white house. the white house did try to remain on side stage and let all of this crafting and legislation happen on capitol hill.
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at the same time the white house is pushing to get the senate bill out first because it was broad, it was comprehensive. the house bill was going to be not as aggressive. in so doing, pushing for senate bill, no plan b for what happens when there's a big comprehensive bipartisan effort out there. it seems to have scared away negotiators on the house side like raoul to push it through. >> you had to start with senate that's where the support was. you had a bipartisan bill pass through. if senate republicans can't quinn their house republican colleagues to pass this bill, how is the president, who they despite, going to do the same thing. i saw in that "politico" story the chair of the homeland security committee wouldn't even meet with the president to talk about this because he thought it was a political trap. >> that's what happened. if the president is in any way related to the bill, has been cced on a bill pertaining to the
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bill or even bcced, it's political kryptonite. then the question of reality. 38 of the house's 234 republicans or 16% represent districts in which latinos account for 20% more of the population, which is to say the base of the republican party does not have latino voters. therefore, immigration reform is not going to feel as urgent to them. >> and to the republican party's long-term debt rr r-- detriment. for the republican party's survival, it needed to do something on comprehensive immigration reform. there were polls out. voter latino had a poll out after the election said latino voters would switch their votes if republicans looked like they were working hard and passed
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comprehensive immigration reform. they have turned on a dime and decided, they meaning republicans, this is something they can't do, can't abide. in the short-term, great. helps in the base. folks in the base don't want it to happen. if the republican party wants to be a national rather than a regional party it has to do something on this issue. >> what do you think, kasie about the prospects of the kids act, which is not a happy meal but a republican version of the dream act and something that eric cantor has come out and supported. there seems to be more sort of momentum for something that would address just the children brought here at a young age illegally. >> that's something you did see the ground shift under that particular issue. talk to romney campaign aides postmortem, his threat to veto the act was one of the worst moments of the campaign as far as the ultimate result. democrats are really wary of doing that. they feel like it gives up all leverage. if we only go that far, how are
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we ever going to get up the momentum they would need to go all the way. that's their view. that's why they have told people to step back away from that. you've seen dreamers go out and say, okay, fine, this bill would help me but not my parents. that's the push you're seeing from the left on that. >> robert, can the republican party do nothing in december, january, february, march, april, may, june, july, august, september, october and expect to win big or bigger in november. >> i think kasie brought up a good appoint. the kids act managed by eric cantor, the majority leader. he knows republicans need to do something in these swing seats. you're going to see them do something with the kids act. when you see rubio backing away from comprehensive immigration reform, they are taking it on the table. they are betting on obama care -- >> surprise. they have been betting on obama care. >> 2010, 2012, 2013.
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they are backing away from immigration and closing in on obama care as a theme for 2013. they have to do something small. if it doesn't passed the senate they can say they proposed it. >> they can say we tried. lets not and say we did. i think that's a movie i watched in my teen years, only a few years ago. relief efforts more urgent in the philippines, a new storm could make things worse. the latest live from manila. [ woman 3 ] to come together even when we're apart. [ male announcer ] in stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy and more, swanson makes holiday dishes delicious. see, i knew testosterone could affect sex drive, but not energy or even my mood. that's when i talked with my doctor. he gave me some blood tests... showed it was low t. that's it. it was a number. [ male announcer ] today, men with low t have androgel 1.62% testosterone gel. the #1 prescribed topical testosterone replacement therapy increases testosterone when used daily.
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philippines is the latest hurdle. four days after typhoon haiyan, cargo planes just arriving to the devastated city of tacloban. thousands of survivors stormed the airport but a few hundred able to board planes and evacuate to manila. through the hardest-hit areas the mood is one of desperation. amateur video, which nbc hasn't authenticated shows mass looting
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at a local mall. signs like this one on the island of leyte plead simply "help us." >> we survived the typhoon and now we're questioning how to survive in terms of food and water. >> i need the rest of the world, the international donner community to get mobilized to help them in their hour of need. a week from now will be too late. >> joining us ian williams, if you can give us the latest on rescue and aid efforts and how the latest storm, weather may be impacting those. >> reporter: the weather certainly isn't helping. tropical depressi tropical depression is approaching, packing winds of 35 miles an hour, which is a lot but much, much weaker than the typhoon from friday.
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frankfully the trajectory is to the south of the typhoon directed area. it won't directly hit those areas but will bring rain. that rain is not going to help. most of the shelter, of course, has been destroyed. people's homes are down. it won't help sanitation, drinking water is down. relief efforts will be impaired by the arrival of the storm and to the south, badly affected area. the overall relief effort, it is starting to crank up. there are a lot of offers from individual countries, international aid agencies, filipino organizations. but they are still struggling to get the aid in here. one of the problems remains the infrastructure logistically it remains very, very difficult, alex. >> one last one, the evacuation effort, what kind of numbers are we talking about in terms of the number of people there hoping to actually get out of the country or get to manila, to other safer
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areas. how big is that effort? >> it's pretty happen hazard to be honest, alex. the philippine armed forces are taking out people when they came. they are bringing in aid to tacloban, and they are loading up those planes with people to take them back to manila. a lot of people are waiting at the airport desperate to get out and the numbers able to take those flights are still quite small. of course, other airports across the devastated region are only now beginning to reopen. this has been a priority of the government. once they do open and there are commercial flights, it will be easier for people to get out of that region. there's no organized policy of evacuation. it's really just a matter of people getting to those airports and get on what flights they can, which is not a great situation, especially when people that have lost everything, and in some cases are injured, alex.
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>> nbc's ian williams. thank you for the update and please stay safe. to help the victims of the typhoon go to for a complete list of organizations offering assistance. after the break, voter suppression, anti-choice legislation, keeping health care there those who need it the most, and now the denial of military benefits to same-sex couples. for some red states the push for less government intervention means more civil rights restrictions. we'll discuss the latest salvo in the fight against marriage equality next on now. [ grunts softly ] [ ding ] i sense you've overpacked, your stomach. try pepto to-go. it's pepto-bismol that fits in your pocket. relief can be yours, but your peanuts... are mine. ♪ but your peanuts... are mine. ♪
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equality may be steadily advancing especially after this
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summer's high court ruling that struck down the defense of marriage act but that doesn't mean there haven't been setbacks. six states are currently refusing to issue military id cards to same-sex couples in the national guard who seek to obtain their ids at state-owned facilities. doing that they are defying an order from the defense secretary chuck hagel. the states maintain their laws require same sex national guards members to travel to federal bases, very far away, to receive the benefits they are legally entitled to. health care, a higher monthly housing allowances, unescorted access to bases and cheaper rates at base com sears. the spouse of a texas guard member tells "the new york times" while they are not being explicitly denied benefits, it is not fair to make some national guard members jump through extra hoops. compares it to separate but equal water fountains in the jim crow south. sometimes it's about the indignity you make people do
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through. it's a petty way to score political points. secretary hagel minced no words addressing the policies of these six states. this is wrong, causes division among our ranks and furthers prejudice. joining me retired lieutenant colonel chris rousey. chris -- lieutenant college. >> chris is fine. >> how do you see this getting resolved. the state seems to be pushing against federal law. this is a typical battle on a number of issues. on this one in particular, what do you see is the ultimate end game? >> well, it's a very interesting question, alex, because i think the question of how it gets resolved really goes to the bigger picture of the constitutionality of what's happening. the bigger picture because the state governors are challenging the authority of the dod over
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the national guard. as i'm sure you're aware the national guard is a dualentity, federal and state. i think the range of how it gets resolved could vary. i think there are some extreme steps that could be taken, and i think there are some smaller steps that would hopefully resolve it. hopefully the american military partner association would like to see the states in full compliance to treat all national guard members equally both in the benefits they receive, also the steps they are required to to go to those benefits. there are small steps that can be taken, moving the id card and benefits enrollment procedures to guard units, all federal facilities. obviously that would be kind of a little bit of a pain to go through. at least everyone would be treated equally. if you move those functions, those processing entities, you're also going to end up moving the resources federal government provides to guard
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units to enroll members and process those functions. you could also see legal challenges. ultimately there's an extreme step, but certainly a legal one, that the federal government could simply pull the federal recognition from those noncompliant states, which would, in essence, shut down guard units. it's with the federal recognition that goes the federal resources that really make those guard units exist. there are 99 -- in most cases the 99% funded by the federal government. >> chris, the question of separate but equal. "the new york times" reporting in some cases some of the benefits including support services to relatives of those deployed overseas are not actually available to same-sex couples. it's not separate but equal, it's in fact, just unequal. can you elaborate on that? >> i think the question still is an open one as to how far reaching the impact of this
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decision will be. i think the states that are noncompliant at this point are trying to spin this as simply an inconvenience. that those same sex spouses simply have to travel a little further. of course that does smack of the separate but equal mentality. we're not sure that's where it ends. the rational the guard units are using to force these families to jump through these extra hoops, if you extrapolate that rational and apply it to a host of other types of support services and activities, then there really could be a much greater reaching impact, one that could also impact on the military readiness of the guard unit. there are all sorts of family support activities and family readiness activities that occur at local guard units that help those military families get stronger and endure rigors and sacrifices that go with being military especially during times of deployment. if you take the rational you're
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using and extrapolate that to other types of situations, it's easy to see those types of activities could be denied those same sex families. >> robert, we have talked a lot about the tension between -- the tension between the federal government and state governments has -- or state governance has counseled the microscope a lot, in terms of aca and how states have not accepted federal money for medicaid expansion, not set up exchanges. the tension there has created a cascade of problem for implementing a lot of policy. this seems to be part of the playbook. states rights, power of states versus federal government has always been something foundational to the republican party. really particularly right now when you see so much difference in terms of cultural, social policy, fiscal policy, these are six states that are defying a dod order, five of which are run by republican governors. i would expect we're going to see even more of this. this case, the aca, voter
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suppression, voter id laws. it seems to be like this is the next chapter of the playbook. >> i think a lot of these issues are decided by the federal court, maybe even supreme court. these tensions between state governments and national government have been going on not only for the past few decades but since the founding of the country. the political point, i think republicans do see a lot more power ascended for themselves within the states. they will try to leverage that, especially with social issues. >> the question, kasie, here we have a retired lieutenant colonel, retired services, people keeping the country safe. this is a big priority if you're on the traditional republican platform, defense and the sense of patriotism in and around our troops and service members. here is an example of republicans being on the opposite side of our troops and national guards men and women. toif wonder if this is a fight that is wise to take up, not just given the decision on defense but also where the
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country is at on the subject of marriage equality and gay rights. >> there's a difference between where the country is as a whole on these issues. if you look at states, texas, georgia, louisiana, mississippi, oklahoma, west virginia. these are not -- these are places where the conversation is at a different point of here when you saw workplace discrimination come to the floor, hardly any republicans stood up against it. the governors there, on the other hand, feel like they are litically free and in some cases politically necessary for them to stand up and take the opposite position. >> chris, a lot of folks said on employment nondiscrimination democrats will use a shame strategy unconscionable to do it in the workplace in the 21st century. i wonder if you think a similar strategy here, denying national guards men and women due to them by law. >> well, alex, i think it certainly is shameful, because it is really nothing but blatant
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discrimination. our military members have a very good reason to worry about this level of discrimination. what happens is at the highest level in the state, at the governor's office, basically a culture is created that works its way down through the command channels that it is okay to discriminate against certain military members. that makes those military members fearful, then, for their careers. we happen to know right now in the state of texas, the state of texas is actually tracking who those same sex married couples are in their guard units. we know of no valid reason to do that. the dod has not requested that tracking. what possible purpose could there be for that. there is blatant discrimination. it is shameful and should be stopped. >> retired lieutenant colonel chris rowzee, thank you so much
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for your time and efforts. >> thank you for having me on. >> coming up, part memoir, critique, fiction, it blurs the lines between race, gender and culture. we will discuss the latest work when he joins us just ahead. [ male announcer ] at humana, understanding what makes you different is what makes us different. we take the time to get to know you and your unique health needs. then we help create a personalized healthcare experience that works for you. and you. and you. with 50 years of know-how, and a dedicated network of doctors, health coaches, and wellness experts, we're a partner you can rely on -- today, and tomorrow. we're going beyond insurance to become your partner in health. humana. she loves a lot ofartner it's what you love about her. but your erectile dysfunction - that could be a question of blood flow. cialis tadalafil for daily use helps you be ready anytime the moment's right. you can be more confident in your ability to be ready.
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a 5:30 time for tuesday. ted, is still waiting. yes! maxwell is out and about... with ted's now ex-girlfriend. wheeeee! whoo! later ted! online claims appointments. just a click away on >> what do malcolm x, truman capote and mikds have in common? according to the author, they are all white girls. we'll ask him to explain when he joins us next. [ male announcer ] this is brad.
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once called james baldwin of the 21st century he's been
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writing pieces that blur the line. his latest rumination, "white girls" malcolm x, eminem, richard prior and michael jackson. explained in lambda literary. they would never point to the white model and say white girl. in thinking about it i wanted to know what a white girl was in my head. i wanted to write about what it means, not only in terms of society but identification of men of color. we're joined by alton, a star writer. thank you so much for joining us and congratulations on the new book. >> thank you, alex, and thank you for having me. >> let me ask you first, who qualifies as a white girl. when you went about thinking about this part of society, how did you sort of -- what were the determining factors?
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>> well, i think to qualify as a white girl in this book doesn't specifically mean gender and race, it has something to do with identification with power and marginalization. when we speak about michael jackson, at a certain point in his career when he performed with diana rosa lot of black homosexuals would refer to him as a white girl because he slowly eradicated any reference physically to his blackness. so i think that the term is complicated and the subjects are complicated by race and gender. >> speaking about michael jackson i'll quote a passage from the book. >> uh-oh. >> it's coming. this is a tame one for this family program. >> okay. >> you write, as his physical transformations began to overshadow his life as a
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musician, jackson's famous mask of white skin and red lips, the mask that distanced him from blackness just as his sexuality distanced him from blacks would come to be read as the most arresting change to the man to said no to life but yes to pop. you seem to be saying in shattering some barriers, he to abandon his own identity. >> i think that self invention is a very tricky thing. it can be an extremely positive aspect of one's personality, as in the case of our president, or it can be something completely destructive, if you don't build on the base of what you actually are. i think that jackson's eradication of his past and his sort of need to be contemporary and need to cross over really had the most terrible effects on his body and his mentality. >> hilton, i'm going to open
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this up to our friends in d.c. here. >> sure. >> john, hilton mentioned the president. one of the reasons i was particularly keen to talk with you about this, the president's blackness and his address of it has been dissected a lot but there's a limited body of work to go from, really. his biggest speech on race was an extemporaneous one. as someone who worked with him on proceeds, biggest moments on the national, international stage, how did you discuss the topic of identity and race as it came to putting those together. >> his most lengthy discussion was with my father, an entire book about wrestling with identity. the interesting thing about the president and you learn in that book because he's been part of so many different worlds, i think that has honed his sense of empathy to know what it's like to be in someone else's
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shoes, internationally, racially, ethnically, he's had so many influences shaping him and that's what kind of leader he is. >> he's walked in so many different parts. international lists, child of a single mother, as a black man, those informed many themes of his speeches. his blackness remains very powerful, incredibly magnetic and divisive thing in the american imagination, even going back to what we talked about at the beginning of the show, jonathan. hilton writes, and i want to get your thoughts on this. addressing gay rights, one of the things that's happened with gay rights, people can get married. i don't know how much that is going to solve being outside of things being gay in general. gay marriage outside of the civil rights is a great thing. not a band-aid on the profound sense of isolation gay people, particularly gay people of color, can feel and how much we have to improvise around the gay status quo. what do you think about that?
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>> there's a lot to work with there, hilton. >> thank you. >> i understand what he's talking about. you're dealing with people who are gay. that has its own issues. but people who are black and gay who are feeling like they are not only outside of the mainstream but in a lot of ways being made to feel like they are guests, and unwanted guests, in their own country. when you have african-americans who are still fighting to have just the basic rights, throw on marriage equality on top of that, there's some people who might -- black people who might say, child, please, i've got other things to worry about here. so i'm going to have to go and reread that hilton quote, you know, line by line. as i said, there's so much to unpack there, i can't do it in 15 seconds. >> how do you feel about -- you know. hilton, one of the things
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you said, you find you're drawn to certain themes and stories and vast majority center on lives lived in the margins. how do women, people of color find their voice in society sometimes tolerant of issues of difference rarely incorporate said voices in the national dialogue. do you think, as the president is want to say, the arc of the universe is long but bends towards justice. we are getting better at having a more robust dialogue that takes into account voices on the margins. >> alex, i think having this discussion on your program is a huge stride forward in terms of understanding there is a conversation to be had about these issues. we have to keep talking about them. i think you made a point earlier about the president and his memoir that he even was addressing the complications. >> one way to continue talking about it, picking up a copy of
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hilton's fabulous book. the book is "white girls." hilton, congratulations on the book. >> alex, thanks a lot. >> thanks to our friends in derk. that's all for now. see you tomorrow at noon eastern. "andrea mitchell reports" is coming up next. cation for anyone, anywhere. if you look at a khan academy video, they cover everything from basic arithmetic to calculus, trigonometry, finance. you can really just get what you need at your own pace. and so, bank of america came and reached out to us and said, "we are really interested in making sure that everyone really understands personal finance." we're like, "well, we're already doing that." and so it was kind of a perfect match. if yand you're talking toevere rheuyour rheumatologistike me, about trying or adding a biologic. this is humira, adalimumab. this is humira working to help relieve my pain.
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