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tv   Inside Washington  PBS  May 27, 2011 8:30pm-9:00pm EDT

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>> what do you think of when you see a tree? but treatment for cancer? alternative fuel for our cars? do you think of hope for the environment, or food, clothing, shelter? we do. weyerhaeuser, growing ideas. >> i am as so looking forward to representing the people of the 26th district and fight for the issues that i know a day care about in washington. >> this week on "inside washington," why all the fuss
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about one special election? 's medicareryan plan. the israeli prime minister received a rousing reception from congress, and as a message for the american president. >> israel will not return to the indefensible boundaries of 1967. >> the president discovers his inner irishman, and wrestles with heavy shoes at the g8. i am -- heavy issues at the g8. >> i m tim pawlenty and i am running for president. >> pawlenty is in, daniels is out, bachmann and >> i have the fire in my belly. captioned by the national captioning institute >> we will get back to sarah palin and others in a moment. take a look at "politico's" thursday deadline.
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does medicare reform mean a political suicide? this week, democrat kathy hochul defeated her opponent, republican jane corwin, in new york's 26 the district did this district is solidly republican, generally, but guess what the key issue was? >> jane corwin supports a budget that essentially ends medicare. >> what do you say to these we need it republicans? >> -- weak-kneed republicans? >> they will run these ads regardless. this is a time for leaders to be leaders. >> democrats tied corwin to ryan plan, which reforms medicare. what did we learn, mark? >> elections when the party changes seats get attention, but
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especially when they were all around an issue that has captured the american people's attention. this was the last test of it. it was medicare, republicans were put on the defensive, democrats were on the offensive. kathy hochul was a far better candidate than and jane corwin. but there is no question that the take away was that medicare hurts republicans and helps democrats. >> colby? >> jane corwin was actually on the sidelines of putting this issue, but she was pushed into it and had to take a stand. she was in the ocean, and had this 50-pound weight called medicare and she sank to the bottom. >> evan, you said that democrats would demagogue medicare. >> demagoguing works. to be apocalyptic about this, if
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at democratic system cannot figure out this problem, it will be a big problem for a long time. >> charles, what is the lesson of this election? >> evan's wisdom. demagoguing works. to republicans, you are linked to this proposal, there is no escaping it. all house republicans supported it, all but five in the senate. you either know how to defend it and you do it, or you are dead. >> senate democrats forced a symbolic roll-call vote of the medicare plan that passed in the house. it failed in the senate, republicans joining the democratic majority. when paul ryan and bill clinton bumped into each other at the reagan building, listen to what was said. >> i said, i am glad that we won this race in new york, but i hope democrats don't use this as
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an excuse to do nothing. >> will the democrats do that as an excuse to do nothing? >> i love this coming from bill clinton. bill clinton in 1995 -- let's roll the tape -- in 1995, newt gingrich succeeded in reducing medicare. what does bill clinton do? he demagogued medicare. go back and look at thae ads they ran. it worked, and he got reelected, >>e then what did he do? exact same decision that clinton did in 1995. he did not speak about entitlements in the budget, which, incidentally, went to a vote in the senate and was defeated 97-0 this week. he is completely running on the bet that americans are against
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debt in the abstract but if you touch entitlements, you will lose. between now and election day, democrats will do nothing, entitlements except demagogue it. >> mark? >> let me dissent from my colleagues here. first of all, this is a republican fiasco. this is not written in scripture, the paul ryan. it was a political solution offered, and it was terribly done. not only was it flawed, but omb says it will only provide 1/3 of the costs in 20 years, but the politics of it are terrible. update never raised it to during the 2010 election when they had a landslide victory, they all went out and voted for it. now, newt gingrich who did have the nerve to say that it was a flawed proposal, is beaten around head and shoulders and he has become a litmus test and
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loyalty oath to every republican candidate who has to walk the plank to support it, and each of them has except mitt romney. the reality is, they will be tagged with. they are stuck with a flawed plan and they never should have brought it to a vote. >> on the other hand, demagoguery is not the special province of one party. remember the health care bill? that issue was demagogued by republicans against democrats. the difference is, democrats ran out from it. if you voted for this bill in the house, you better come up with arguments, because you cannot run away from a vote. republicans have to stick with it. >> the president is in ireland, great visuals. he is with the queen, great visuals. he is on the normandy coast, great visuals. >> it is true, but in the meantime, joplin, missouri essentially is wiped off the
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map, and the president says, "i will see you on sunday." if bush had said that, i can assure you that would have been a headline all across america. >> i don't think so. the president had a well-laid- out schedule. >> he did not have to do ireland. ireland happened right after joplin. ireland was optional. the g8 is not, i understand, but the g8 was much later. >> he was on his way to ireland, if i am not mistaken, when at joplin happened. i do want to say something as an irish-american, proud to share my heritage with the president. i have not seen him smile as openly and naturally as he did in ireland in two years. >> all kinds of action on the republican presidential front. >> i will take a different approach. i will tell you the truth. the truth is, washington, d.c.
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is broken. >> that is former minnesota gov. tim pawlenty, who has declared his candidacy but the republican presidential nomination. charles, how does the governor to allow the proposed to fix it? >> -- how does gov. pawlenty propose to fix it? >> he is a down-the-line acceptable and it to republicans did all the others have baggage. at least he has a piece of the small luggage when he starts his campaign with the oldest cliche in the book. i wish he had used another, more felicitous phrase. >> michele bachmann is talking about going to iowa next week. >> gov. palin is reemerging with a national tour. tim pawlenty is the least unacceptable to the greatest number.
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that is what he has going for him, not that he is exciting or dynamic. he has fewer flaws than the other presumed front-runners -- you have to list jon huntsman and mitt romney in reverse order. >> rick santorum announces his campaign on june 6 in the pennsylvania coal mines where his grandfather once worked. a gallup poll numbers, santorum, 2%, rank-and-file republicans, palin 15, ron paul at 10%. what do those numbers tell you, evan? >> absolutely nothing. those are absolutely about name recognition, completely meaningless. >> that put a damper on your point. >> that's all right. >> production assistance for "inside washington" was provided by allbritton communications and "politico," reporting on the legislative, executive, and political arena.
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palin is in a feature film, "the undefeated," perring in iowa, what a coincidence. she is bus tour, on the way to new hampshire. >> she is a star. whether she will run is a bigger question. the republican party is rich in candidates. i don't know why people are so down. no one has talked about hermain cain. i would like to see a herman cain-ron paul ticket. >> i will not take the bait. [laughter] >> herman cain has been honest enough to say that that ryan plan is a voucher plan. he endorsed it.
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sarah palin is a threat to michele bachmann. if she does go, the bachmann campaign dies. the advantage right now is to mitt romney mitt romney is the front runner. every day that goes by where you are not talking about the front runner for criticizing him, it is a good day -- >> the question is huntsman. mitch daniels was going to be great, except his wife does not want him to do it so he is don. huntsman has charisma, which pawlenty lacks. he is moderate, he is liked by people like me, which is a problem -- >> absolutely a problem. >> that will cost him, the fact that he is moderate? >> "moderate." is like saying for a democrat, if you support the ryan plan, we
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will kill you because you are moderate. there is a part of the right, a party of the left. it is not as if he cannot win the nomination. romney has a bigger issue, romneycare, and i think his front runner-ship will hinge on how he handles attacks on that issue in the debate. if he handles it well and the answer is a debt, he could win the nomination not know if he cannot, it will be extremely difficult -- he could win the nomination. if he cannot, it will be. . >> the former speaker of the house is running -- >> his campaign is over. he had the worst launch since the hindenburg. >> but he is still flying. >> what about the tiffany's stuff? >> it is like the john edwards
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hair cut. it says something about one's taste, character, this guy is supposed to be so frugal and yet he is spending -- >> you mean the same john edwards was going to be indicted? >> yes. >> it is not about tiffany's. mark said that the ryan plan was flawed and thus he was excoriated had he said it was flawed and he had an alternative, that what happened one thing. he said it was right-wing social engineering. >> spoke truth to power. >> exactly, and that is what he does not have a chance at the nomination. if you attacked the plan that the party has rallied around, and, incidentally, was proposed by the clinton commission in 1999, you say it. but if you call it social engineering, you give the democrats a talking point brought even president clinton said ato ryan that something has
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to be done. >> june 13, new hampshire, first major debate. newt gingrich, watch him, listen to him. people making news. >> -- he will make news. >> when president obama opens up daylight between us and israel, it invites a danger. he is sending dangerous messages to the rest of the world. >> that is tim pawlenty speaking to an audience in florida about obama's statement that the borders should be based on 1967 lines with agreed swaps. earlier we heard pawlenty promised to tell the truth. is he telling the truth about this, colby? >> there has been a lot of distortion about what the president actually said. i listened to thbibi netanyahu's speech before the congress,
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which was well received -- >> i'll say. >> treated like a rock star. i came away from the whole thing with a sense of sadness. you can see what is inevitable down the road. the peace talks are going nowhere, and that means that a confrontation is almost inevitable. what i cannot understand, and maybe somebody can explain it to me -- the statement was issued that said that the united states believes good faith negotiations can have both parties agree on an outcome with an independent and a viable state based on 1967 lines with agreed swaps, and the israeli goal of a secure state that recognizes subsequent developments. that's the man was it jointly issued by secretary of state -- that statement was jointly issued by secretary of state hillary clinton and netanyahu
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last fall. when the president of united states essentially says the same thing, there is a big uproar -- >> they are never going to solve this problem. netanyahu is never going to do it. he is just incapable of doing it. and the palestinians are incapable of doing this. they have gotten close several times, and they never do it, and they never will. >> according to a poll in for a transcript of this broadcast, log on to -- poll in israel, a 57% of those surveyed said that netanyahu should have supported obama's approach. apparently they are more supportive of the president and members of congress, who was
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essentially who loves you more, jumping jacks in the house and senate. i thought republicans were going to nominate netanyahu and go directly to iowa, if it were not for the birth certificate problem. >> what about colby's. -- colby's point -- >> i just want to say that the jumping jacks and the house and senate responding to the prime minister of the beleaguered democracy under attack relentlessly -- the reason why this speech got a remarkable response in the congress is it was churchillian in the sense that we believe the same things, the only democracy in the region and of the 300 million arabs in the world, only 1 million at civil rights, and they are all israeli arabs. the most important line of the speech was that netanyahu said,
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"i accept a palestinian state, as does all of israel. mr. abbas, say these five words -- i accept the jewish state." he won't, no palestinian leader ever has, and the reason why -- there is no leader of the palestinians who will say or who will ever say "i accept a jewish state." until he does, you only have a war. >> did you just cost the republicans control of the house? >> i think we were elected in this last election to take a stand on fixing this country's fiscal problems. >> what if this destroys your political career? >> i don't care about that. this not the time to be worried about political careers. >> is congressman ryan getting a
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raw deal here? >> it is turnabout, and i don't think that is always fair play, but you go back and you look at some of the things that paul ryan said about the health plan, he also got to the point of demagoguery. >> but on this case, it is he throwing granny under the bus? >> no, he is not. you had a paul ryan like is pushing -- >> somebody had to go first. he deserves a medal. >> i gave him credit for stepping up. >> mark? >> oh, ok. it is a political disaster. the democrats ran on health care
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in 2008. they won a big election on it. they have been on the defensive on that issue ever since, and they pass it without any republican votes. the republicans pass this without any democratic votes. you do not pass large initiatives on a single-party vote and not expect to have a reaction. >> but however maladroit it was, somebody had to start. both parties were absolutely paralyzed on this, at an issue that is paramount to our national survival. if we don't deal with this stuff, we will have a lower standard of living and deep depression. however flawed the plant may be, at least he got one. >> and the fact that it did cause a political disaster in buffalo is to the credit of republicans, who, as ryan said,
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are willing to go dark cliff to address the problem -- over a cliff and to address the problem that is driving us to greece. corwin never defended it, she tried to run away, she could not explain it. unless republicans successfully explained and defended, it is going to be a disaster, but it is an act of patriotism in trying to actually attack the problem. >> act of patriotism -- historically, when democrats organize of firing squad, they go in a circle. republicans have done at the same thing. >> evan, you want to give paul billa medal, and even clinton says we have to do something. >> this is no longer a theoretical exercise. if we do not get control of our situation, which is driven by
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entitlements, we will have a lower standard of living in this country for sure. we will have high inflation, and people will live less well. liberal democracies are not very good about cutting back, dealing with less. we have never really been challenged this way. putin is the canary in the coal mine, -- if you ask -- britain is the canary in the coal mine, if you ask me. if we don't, charles, maybe it is a little apocalyptic to say we will be greece, but very bad things will happen. >> people in their 30's -- >> they are not -- that is demagoguery -- >> it was the voters in the 30's who have parents in their 50s,
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who are expecting them to be on medicare, and all of a sudden they are facing the prospect that they are going to have to pick up the tab, not simply to be good children and to attend to the interests, but to provide the income for their folks who are going to need it. nobody denies that medicare is unsustainable in its present level. nobody can argue that. but the question is, who do you want making the cuts? do you want people who opposed to this program from the very outset, who oppose government, who are disciples of ayn rand, or do you want people who are committed to this program and are committed to saving it? that ought to be the argument of the obama administration. >> that is a ridiculous argument -- >> if you are under 55 -- >> can i respond? if it republican proposes a cut in entitlements, that in and of itself is a plan that one ought
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to reject because of republican history? that is like saying that if a proposes civil rights in the 1960's, he should be ignored because of the democratic south having 100 years of racism. that is absurd not how you look at the plan on its merits, and the reality is that democrats have offered nothing. if you have parents in their 50s and 60s, what you ought to worry about is the president will do nothing about it and make it insolvent in five to 10 years. >> medicare is the floor beneath which they will not fall. they have been told that this is going to be yanked out from under them -- >> which is a lie. >> bill clinton even said to the democrats, don't tippy-toe
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around this issue. the administration's responses that we have already taken steps with the health care reform bill. they just have to go to the next step and come up with specific changes in the entitlement programs. not just medicare, but medicaid and social security -- >> in this country, 17% of our economy goes to health care. in other countries, is 10-11%. singapore has 4%. we are unbelievably inefficient. it can be fixed, but you have to fix it. >> see you next week. for a transcript of this broadcast, log on to
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