msnbc | June 19, 2012
>>> mitt romney trying to gain ground in crucial swing states while losing ground with a growing group of voters that could put president obama over the top in november. mitt romney is in his home state of michigan where president obama remains slightly on top in the polls. meanwhile, the reaction to the president's executive order for younger illegal immigrants has put romney at a national disadvantage. nearly two-thirds of americans supporting the president's policy decision forcing romney into an corner on an issue he doesn't want to discuss in detail.
>> the president i think made a mistake by putting out there what he called a stop gap measure, but i can tell you that those people who come here by virtue of their parents bringing them here, who came in illegally, that's something i don't want to football with. it's a political matter.
>> and when it comes to vetting, reports of surfacing this morning senator marco rubio is not in contention to be paired with romney , though that report has not been ent dentally confirmed by nbc news, and top political advisers are not commenting on that story. however, senator rubio continues his audition for the spot by denouncing the president's immigration plan and laying out the reality is of this issue.
>> we have 21st century immigration needs in this country and our immigration system is not modern. related to that issue but separate is the plight of young people brought to this nation at very young age, 5, 6, 7 years of age. grown up here undocumented. many don't know they're undocumented until we graduate high school . some are the valedictorians and we're going deport them. that's wrong as well.
>> what's wrong with what the president's doing?
>> it ignore, the congress and the constitution.
>> dive right in. a lot to talk about. bring in democratic strategist doug cornell, magazine editor j.p. and jonathan . great to see you all this morning. jonathan , start with you, because the polls we see nationally show this is being such a close, tight race, but when the we start to think the demographics of this, even electoral math, everything points to disadvantaged romney . is he discounting minority voters in not having something to real to offer them or kl restore our future really play a role here?
>> i think mitt romney , as you said at the top of the show, is in a bit of a bind here. i think he knows what needs to be done. the only problem is, within the republican party and certainly among far right conservatives, this issue is an issue that they care deeply about, and the solutions are not solutions that they want to hear. remember during the, i believe it was rick perry 's first debate when he made that now famous comment about not having a heart, given what some of the folks on that stage wanted to do to undocumented workers , in this country, and he got booed. mitt romney is still trying to convince conservatives that he is -- that he is one of them. that he is someone hoob should be the republican nominee. the fact he couldn't answer the gre bob schieffer three times. the fact you showed the clip, he's still not giving a direct answer what he would do shows you really the peril he's in.
>> doug , show everybody this. a graphic from the "new york times" and the pew hispanic center . 10 million eligible hispanic -american voters are not currently registered. however the obama policy shift may truly endear hispanic -americans to the president. how does that translate to more names on the voters rolls?
>> there's a treasure-trove of votes there for the obama campaign , and i think this decision by the president will definitely help with that community. i mean, mitt romney has taken a very, very right wing position on immigration. he opposes the dream act , which congress did bring up and vote on two years ago. he has this -- this policy which is essentially make life so unbearable for undocumented workers in the united states , that they deport themselves. which is something that most experts believe is ridiculous and john mccain said is inhumane. i think he is now, like jonathan said, is caught in a corner, because the poemses are not tenable with the hispanic community. he'll try to find and etch and sketch and bring himself to the center, but i don't think there is one there and it's going to hurt him in colorado i think and in florida and hurt him in nevada.
>> j.p., as mitt romney and everybody waits tots hear exactly how he wants to address this with his own specifics, you know, because it's not going to be good enough for people just to be against, while president obama has come out with a real possible game changer among hispanic voters, if he were to include senator marco rubio as his vice president. now, the senate was on cnbc today, kind of dodging the subject. take a look.
>> are you someone who will be the vice president candidate?
>> i said repeatedly, i won't discuss the vice presidential process.
>> there are only 41 and haven't been in the senate that long. does that -- how does it all figure out in the political thinking?
>> two things. one, i'm not discussing the --
>> oh, did you already say that?
>> i did. in the united states senate , the job i have.
>> you doubt you're qualified to serve as president?
>> no doubt to serve in the united states senate and proud that i have.
>> did a really good job there. it's always bad luck going on the record if you're not really in contention or haven't been given this job, j.p. sought ab so the abc news report came out, not in the contention. abc news has not confirmed that at this moment. you have it. senator rubio discounting whether or not she in the running, yet still out there almost auditioning for this role. do you think it's a mistake he's not being vetted right now especially when we know what a short vet meant for sarah palin and john mccain in '08?
>> i love this journalism technique of trying to report something based on rumors and suggesting that it's actually a fact or trying to suss out what the real truth is based on requiring some kind of correction. this kind of thing happens all the time. do i think it's a mistake to not consider rubio? we don't know if he's not being considered, nobody's confirmed that. should he be? absolutely. a brilliant senator, done great work in the senator but is needed in the senate. i can understand by republicans would be reluctant to give up that seat. a hard state to win. got to hold it down for florida, for the upcoming elections. so it makes perfect sense for him not to want to answer that question. if i can back to a little about this bloomberg poll everyone is talking about saying everyone loves what the president has done. there's no party affiliation among those who have been polled. if you look at gallup, look at rasmussen or any other polls, no shift. it doesn't seem there's a ground swell of support for president obama 's support and all it's done, shown how little he's done on immigration the last couple years up until the last possible minute when he's running for re-election.
>> it's cull coming down to this election to the independents. if that poll, you're referring to with bloomberg , doesn't have party affiliation attached to it, doesen that bode better for the president, the fact that independents, therapy getting picked up?
>> no. could have picked up all 2ke78 democrats.
>> you're making assumptions. told us journalistically we can't make assumptions.
>> no. i'm not trying to accuse this. i'm saying that because we --
>> let's not make -- we're not making assumptions whether or not marco rubio should or shouldn't be vetted, in contention, no the in contention. so let's not make assumptions on this. moving on to talk about sarah palin , jonathan , and reminding everybody that the republican national convention isn't until the end of august. a lot of times, the announcement of who the vp candidate will be doesn't happen until about 72 hours before. tleec at least where they've had the best luck of winning the election. sarah palin nopt t at the mccain's list of vp possibilities where we were in '08. is it too early to really get a defined list right now? is the audition process what we're seeing, rubio, all of these people, even standing on stage with scott walker the other day. a lot of people think, well, maybe he'd be a good choice?
>> this is all part of the theory, thomas. therapy the people who we're all talking about. those names you just mentioned and probably quite a number of people who we're not talking about who the campaign is actually probably quite thrilled we're not talking about them, as potential vice presidential nominees. yes, june. june is a bit early to be -- to be talking about this, but you better believe, particularly for the romney campaign, that they are going to take this vetting process very, very seriously. the woman who's in charge of the vp selection that been on the job for a while now, and, you know, people are being asked for their documents. there are questionnaires that have to be filled out, and they don't want to make the same mistake john mccain made back in 2008 , where in the final -- in the final hours before a pick had to be made, the find days, they just pullaled this name, sarah palin , out of a hat. you know, mitt romney wants someone next to him who can not only be a -- a good surrogate and go after the president and be a good vice presidential nominee , also someone who could become, could be president of the united states if something, you know, god forbid were to happen to him if he were to be president.
>> j.p., i want to ask you about the potential of mayor bloomberg here in new york . the "new york times" brought up this report that mayor bloomberg was overheard saying mitt romney would be better at running the country, but couldn't really support him because of his social issues. do you think the romney campaign would look at somebody like a bloomberg ? that's really out of the box for a lot of people. top think maybe they could run on the same ticket together, and that would draw a lot of independent voters?
>> it might draw a lot of independent voters, but frankly, i think you might lose new york with that. i mean, a lot of people are not really enjoying his tenure. bloomberg likes to insert himself into every news cycle. if he has an opportunity to talk about romney , he will talk about it. even what kind of food they for breakfast. doesn't matter.
>> what about you? doug , outside of the box. bloomberg business credentials are stellar. someone has could reinforce a ticket for mitt romney on that level of business credential, getting america's economy back into shape. do you think they should even consider people that aren't in the political spectrum ?
>> yeah, absolutely. i think they should consider a wide spectrum of folks. i mean, one name that you don't hear much about but i'm surprised you haven't is someone like condoleezza rice . right? who is very accomplished, national security aide to the former president. everyone knows who she is. an african- american woman . you never really hear her name. you really just kind of hear the rob portmans, tim paul lengthwlentys of the world. they're not going to overshadow mitt, which is probably what the romney campaign sk whoing for, but they're not going to really give him any excitement. i think they should look at a wide variety of folks, and it's interesting that they -- as j.p. said, dwoent know if they're looking at someone like rubio. if i was them i would get that out there strictly for political reasons.
>> remain as speculation game, at least tluf the summer. thank