Morning Joe | January 25, 2013
>> you attempted a few times to talk with her through facetime. and you would see basically what? a black box .
>> and she would say to you, i can see you. i don't know why you can't see me.
>> didn't you think that was a little weird?
>> to be honest, no.
>> i didn't.
>> are you that technologically challenged? i am, but someone your age shouldn't be, right?
>> i saw a black screen . she said, i can see you and i can see me. you should be able to see me. i was, like, i don't know what's wrong with your camera.
>> hi, i'm just letting you know i got here and i'm getting ready for my first session and just wanted to call you to keep you posted. i miss you. i love you. bye.
>> good morning, my friends. it's friday, january 25th . let's take that one apart. with us on set, msnbc political analyst and visiting professor at nyu, former democratic congressman harold ford jr . also senior political editor and white house correspondent for the huffington post , sam stein. former treasury secretary official -- we're talking about the future there -- future treasury secretary.
>> and former treasury official and " morning joe " economic analyst, steve rattner. in d.c., msnbc political analyst and vice president and executive editor of msnbc.com, richard wolffe . nbc news capitol hill correspondent kelly o'donnell joins us from washington. harold, i'm sorry, i just had to run through that. come on, man. come on. what's going on here? come on. what's going on here? that story is about as clunky and awkward as my red sweater this morning.
>> that's awkward. that is awkward.
>> that is strange.
>> your sweater does look good.
>> the sweater looks okay.
>> that is strange stuff. let me ask you this. can i just ask you an innocent question?
>> just a babe in the woods that's wandered in off the streets. and i've just got a question. i don't understand. denzel washington said in "philadelphia," talk to me like i'm a fourth grader. explain it to me. why do you have a guy who's like the number one or number two college prospect in america , he could have any girl, not only on the notre dame campus , but probably on any campus in america .
>> fair to say.
>> is that fair to say?
>> is that as obvious as my red sweater?
>> i'm not that bright but it's fair to say.
>> we've all gone to college. these guys are adored. they are worshipped. why would a dude decide to date, in quote marks, somebody that he didn't see for two years and it ended up that the dude -- that the lady was actually a dude on the other side -- and it doesn't make sense to me, harold. explain it to me. i want to understand.
>> i'll be 43 this year. i don't understand all of the online dating . and i've never participated in anything like that, but i can't imagine --
>> that's not what anthony wiener says, but that's okay. you guys had some good times.
>> i can't imagine she'd go 2 1/2, 3 years without seeing your girlfriend.
>> that's not the story.
>> that's an element of the story.
>> so allegedly they meet three years ago but they only started dating about six or eight months ago.
>> but they never met.
>> they never met. they online met. three years ago.
>> i couldn't have started dating had i not met the person.
>> that's a little bizarre.
>> let's take the absurdity of it all. why did he do it? why did he do it?
>> that's what i'm asking you. could you please explain to everybody. i'd like to hear your explanation.
>> maybe the wiring isn't all there.
>> i can offer an explanation. he was told that this person was, like, suffering horrific events, a car crash , leukemia or whatever it was and basically on her death bed and he got emotionally attached to this person even if it happened online. i'm trying here. i'm trying here.
>> hundreds of hours of phone calls . all of these women.
>> that's a level of sensitivity from sam i didn't know we had.
>> come on.
>> i'm impressed.
>> i'm just trying to help the guy out.
>> kelly .
>> women are always trying to find a terrific man, and to think we only need to go online.
>> kelly , do you buy this that one of the best football players in america at one of the biggest, most revered universities in america would decide not to date human beings and instead for two, three years hang out with somebody online for hours at a time?
>> well, i really think that this is some sort of sensitive personal thing. so i don't want to be hard on the guy. but i think we've redefined dating. and so i am kind of -- i'm sort of blown away by that myself. but, you know, i wish him well. i think this is probably terribly embarrassing. and i would think that ladies who meet him in the future will certainly at least want to say hello in person. i suspect he won't be online or using a webcam or any of that for a long time to come. it's one of those awkward things about this world we live in where people feel a sense of intimacy.
>> does this damage his draft chances?
>> i went to alabama, the alabama crimson tide damaged his stock so badly. they were saying it after the game. he was a little child out there. he looked lost as if he were sorting through a three-year twitter feed.
>> a fiasco coming unfolded.
>> he had a bad couple weeks when he went out there.
>> i'll tell you what actually was even worse , the fact that the guy knew that it was a hoax.
>> and also -- and actually, this is what's more disturbing, steve, that notre dame knew it was a hoax.
>> yes. that was a really interesting question. yes.
>> and go out -- now, what he said was -- what he said was, you know, i couldn't just change my story, but if you're notre da dame, this is very easy to take care of, especially when you're dealing with sports reporters. we'd like to interview manti. here's the deal. you can but he doesn't want to talk about his girlfriend. you know what? it's personal to him. her imaginary family gets really hurt when he talks about his imaginary girlfriend. this would have been so easy to avoid. and so, okay, whatever i think kelly 's right, it's a sensitive personal thing he's dealing with. but notre dame , they've got much more to speak to. they let this lie continue. and they knew it was a lie.
>> for obvious commercial reasons.
>> for obvious commercial reasons. notre dame is the one that offers -- that really needs to explain what's going on here. how did they let that happen?
>> but joe?
>> what women really want to know is the person who was playing his girlfriend is apparently a guy. and to think that a guy would stay on the phone with you for three or four hours at night is something women have been looking for for a long time.
>> exactly. it's a total lie. guys don't do things like that.
>> they have the voice mail records.
>> come on.
>> okay, i'm done. i'm trying my best.