PoliticsNation | January 25, 2013
>>> in charlotte, north carolina for the meeting. it's the party 's first big meeting since barack wiped the floor with them in november's election. the committee is calling from a republican renewal. a time for change . to build new relationships, to compete in every state in every region. hmm. sounds bold, even promising. so who are the republicans turning to? turning to lead their bold, new plan.
>> the ayes have it. priebus is elected chairman.
>> huh? huh? that's how they started? with reince priebus, the same guy who helped get them into the mess? but, okay, let's give them a chance with their bold, new plan. what's at the top of the to do list?
>> we've got to stop being the stupid party . and i'm serious. it's time for a new republican party that talks like adults. it's no secret that we had a number of people that damaged the brain with offensive comments.
>> stop being the stupid party . okay. okay. i can get behind that. what's next?
>> we've got to compete for every single vote. 47% and the 53% and, by the way, any other combination of that that adds up to a hundred percent.
>> and newt gingrich agrees, i'm for 100 percent of the american people believing that they have a party that cares about their future. wow. what a vision. what an amazing, ground-breaking idea, including all americans. but okay, it's an idea, at least. what other changes do they have in mind? gingrich says we need to learn to be a happy party . imagine that. a party with leaders that aren't so grumpy. i'm liking this. so how do you plan to get this done?
>> the task before us now is charting our party 's future. the good news is our principles are sound.
>> principles are sound? they're sticking with the same, failed principles. what about the renewal? the 100 percent? the happy people? what exactly will you be changing?
>> we can standby our timeless principles and articulate them in ways that are modern. and that, i believe, is how we'll achieve republican renewal.
>> they're going to change by renewing the same druestructive policies. same principles, different message. maybe it's time to go back to step one.
>> we've got to stop being the stupid party .
>> on second thought, good luck with that one. joining me now is melissa harry perry . did they not get the message?
>> any time you give me a chance to talk about my governor, bobby jindal , who, on my place, we use a hash tag, fbj, forget bobby jindal . this is a man whose policies in the state of louisiana have created a voucher program that increasingly sends children to schools that teach creationism. this man, who was a biology major, who understands what basic, scientific principles are, is sending children in a poor state with under-achieving schools to school that are teaching them with state dollars. when he says stop being the stupid party , that is pure rhetoric. as you heard there from priebus, they're not talking at all act a core change in how this party actually plans to govern. they're just talking about a cosmetic difference.
>> he's also not teaching in
some of those schools, siensz: oh, yeah, as the science course is creationism.
>> yes, that's exactly right.
>> e.j., when you look at reince ps reince priebus, opportunityism working on voters but the same policies, i mean, do they get it?
>>> i think the newer slogan is don't worry, be happy. that happiness would be nice compared to what we have. he did say the party needed to be more welcoming and inclusive. the problem is that that takes them away from having to think about what actually failed them.
>> mitt romney got in trouble because a lot of people had already come to believe that the republican party was primarily a party of very wealthy people and was only interested in cutting their taxes. they lost the latino vote because mitt romney talked about self deportation and the party of blocked immigration reform . and the african american vote was going to go to president obama . but they jammed it way up with their voter suppression effort. they've got to think more about fundamentals and not just organization.
>> and, melissa , will you look at the american people , 68% say it's unacceptable to cut medicaid. 66% disapprove of the gop's negotiation over tax. what they are selling, the american people are not buying. they're in denial. they're acting -- in fact, they're saying that what we have is fundamental principles are right. we're just presenting it wrong. it's not the content they're saying it's the package. no, it's the content.
>> you know where this is going to get really real for people on the ground? are these republican governors who are going to continue to try to block president obama 's affordable care act that is going to now finally start taking effect on the legislative term. now what we're going to see is in states that are allowing the health care changes, that are doing the kinds of things that are allowing the medicaid ex extension, you're going to see a dramatic impact. and then in states like bobby jindal 's where they're standing around the school door with health care reform and have fewer k no, ma'amic opportunities and can't grow in their hospital sick tors and all of that, nen ythen you're going to see -- part of it is about the social policy . but the other part of it is their social policy decisions would have economic consequences.
>> they are going to feel it in their pocketbook. you know, e.j., something was telling when the senator announced it and he won't run for re-election. and took a shot at his own party .
>> now, this is a conservative taking a shot at his own party .
>> well, i guess i agree, by the way, with melissa on the health care and people trying to block it. but let me be a little opt mystic here. i do think there are republicans who do know that the substance matters here. the republicans knew they couldn't fight president obama on the debt ceiling. they should have just extended it sbeerly. i think there are some republicans who learned some lessons who broke with the party to vote with aid for the victims of hurricane sandy. so i think this sort of meeting is sort of the top line of people wanting to say it's just organization. but i think below that, there are republicans who know their problems run deeper.
>> i don't doubt that, but i think that the bad signal is, for example, how are you going to say you're going to have change re-elect the same chairman in reince priebus, who we learned this week, had clint east wo east's empty chair in his office. to have that as some symbol that you want to recognize other than if you use an example to show how you lost an election, how dumb we could be. i mean, what -- can you re-e lek elect this guy's chair?
>> look, we are in a two- party system . but the parties recon fizz your themselves. so, for example, there was ultimately a moment when the party shifted and where those democrats had to find themselves a new party . and we may be looking at a republican party that was similarly in a position where it's going to have to shift between those who are going to follow a reasonable path. there's plenty to disagree about in the land of reasonable. it's fine to have a con sefbtive party .
>> e.j., dion and melissa harry perry , thanks. and have a great weekend. and remember, watch melissa harris perry saturdays and sundays at 10:00 a.m . here on msnbc. ahead, the right wing plan to steal elections pops up in another state? why is the rnc chair sigh lent. and then the sheriff vowing to defie president obama 's gun laws. i have a few questions for him.
>> and he missed the inauguration. but willard is in washington today. and he made some news. there's a big friday show coming, so stay with