Morning Joe | November 15, 2012
>>> joining the conversation now, former treasury official and " morning joe " economic analyst, steve rattner, good morning.
>> good morning.
>> we'll get to your charts. also mike allen from the "politico" newsroom, the chief white house correspondent there. good morning.
>> i hate being objectified like you guys.
>> see, you're in the deutsche camp. let's talk about what mitt romney said in that conference call this week. he was talking to his biggest donors, defending his campaign by saying president obama won because he focused on giving, quote, gifts to latinos, african-americans and younger voters.
>> what the president -- president's campaign did was focus on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government and then work very aggressively to turn them out to vote.
>> mr. romney went on to say the president wooed hispanic voters with free health care and, quote, amnesty for children of illegal immigrants. as for voters in htheir 20s, romney said, quote, with regards to the young people , for instance, a forgiveness of college loan interest was a big gift. free extra septemberives were very big with young college-aged women. and then finally obamacare also made a difference for them because as you know, anybody 26 years of age and younger was now going to be part of their parents' plan, and that was a big gift to young people . all right, mike. a lot of republicans -- i'm thinking of governor bobby jindal among many others have come out and whiplashed against these comments and saying it's ridiculous and not the reason governor romney lost. what's the reaction been like in washington?
>> republicans are very disappointed by this, and there are three big reasons. first of all, this is sour grapes , like this certainly isn't gracious. second, it's just not accurate. there were many, many other factors that were involved, gifts to minorities were not the reason that president obama won the white state of new hampshire , the largely white state of iowa . it's not why he won the hometown of paul ryan , janesville, wisconsin. so there's just a factual issue. but third and biggest, and this is where you heard the louisiana governor , bobby jindal , installed yesterday as the chairman of the republican governors association . this is where you heard him coming in, that republicans say this is a just-doesn't-get-it moment for romney . it makes republicans think that the 47% comment was no slip of the tongue . at his press conference in las vegas yesterday, governor jindal, our reporter, says became visibly agitated about this and said these comments were absolutely wrong. and they come at a time when almost every other leading republican figure is saying the party really needs to look inside itself and change karl rove . in "the wall street journal " today, it's saying the republican party needs to reverse engineer what the obama campaign did in its turnout efforts. senator john cornyn of texas, the head of the senate republicans , as of yesterday, the number two senate republican under mitch mcconnell , saying the republican party has a brand problem and a tactical problem. and the republican national chairman, reince priebus, saying in a presentation to senate republicans yesterday that the republican party needs to do a deep dive on what did wrong. they need to look at more of a 50-state strategy like democrats had. they are going to do focus groups on the republican message. and they're going to talk to state chairmen, donors, outside groups to figure out how they can make their message more rez nant and their machine more effective.
>> as mike is explaining here, the reaction to what romney said is almost more interesting than what he said. bobby jindal went on to say two points. one, we have to stop dividing the voters. we need to go after 100% of the voters and show how our policies help every voter to achieve the american dream , not just a part of the country. is this a strategic moment for the republican party , turning away from the romney years and looking ahead to '16 and understanding the reason they lost last tuesday?
>> well, yeah. i mean, mike's right, it does sound like sour grapes , which is not a good color on anyone including mitt romney , and blaming the voters which is essentially what he's doing, indicting the voters. that's not a good idea. we can't, as republicans and conservatives, say you didn't vote for us, and it's your fault. no, we didn't make the case. we didn't adequately make our case. and we tried in the last six months of the campaign, and we should have been trying for four years. and i wrote about this yesterday in "the daily news." conservatives don't need to rebrand. they don't need to --
>> yes, they do.
>> -- they don't need to soul search. conservatives need to spend more time talking about why their policies work for everyone.
>> they do need to rebrand.
>> you can't keep indicting the electorate and blaming obama and blaming defense on the things obama has done.
>> how can you say they don't need to rebrand? you couldn't be more brand . brands have attributes. what they stand for. demographic fait accompli, they completely need to rebrand themselves. stop exit polling .
>> exit polling shows people want less government, not more government. they don't need to let go of their values.
>> you saw the values -- you saw mitt romney 's, another articulation of 40%, us and them.
>> that's not a value, that's a message. the message is wrong.
>> that's a values system.
>> it's not and it's not a conservative message.
>> it's out of date, it's irrelevant. the brand is not in touch with where the world is going. so for you to say they don't have to reinvent that brand is absurd, frankly.
>> there are certain conservatives who are out of touch, but the message and the values of conservatism are alive and well and will survive this election and others.
>> it's more than just the brand . it's also the policies. i'd like to see the republicans explain how their policies or at least mitt romney 's policies on immigration are good for latinos. i'd like to see them explain how their policies --
>> so would i.
>> -- on medicare and medicaid are good for the poor. i'd like to see them explain a lot of their policies, not just their brand . i'll see that --
>> policies would be the articulation of the brand .
>> that's what they didn't do well.
>> i'll see the expertise on brand to donny. on policies, it's not a question of explaining their policies, it's the fact that their policies are not good for --
>> no, they didn't adequately make the case that expanding welfare, for example, increases poverty, as it has over the past four years, and increases income inequality. we haven't explained how that works.
>> yeah, but i would love to see them try to convince all those people who got kicked off welfare in the last 12 years because we changed the program, why that was good for them.
>> i would just like to see both paul ryan and mitt romney each answer the question individually how is it that both of you lost your hometowns? mitt romney lost his hometown, belmont, massachusetts. paul ryan lost his, janesville, wisconsin. how does that happen? you've got to be saying something wrong.
>> mitt romney lost all of his hometowns. and there are many. there are many of them. mike allen , great to talk to you. thanks so much.
>> see you soon.
>> we'll see you.
>>> "new york times" magazine mark leibovich and peter alexander join us next. more " morning joe " in a moment.