PoliticsNation | February 01, 2013
>> you for tuning in. we begin tonight with breaking news. late today, republicans launched a new attack on the obama administration. and on regular americans all across the country. senate republicans are vowing to block richard cadre, president obama 's pick to head the consumer financial protection bureau. that's the agency elizabeth warren set up to make sure big banks don't prey on regular americans. but, today, 43 republicans sent a letter saying they're worried the agency has too much power over the banks. and they won't allow the nomination to go ahe. this is outrageous. the right wing is doing everything it can to block this president. to stand against working class people. and to stand up for wall street . that i had' they're even willing to hurt the economy itself. it's that's what it takes to hurt the president, they're willing to do it.
>> any immediate economic setback or the perception of one could weaken obama 's clout. maybe a sour economy is worth it if it will distract obama .
>> there's a lot of talk these days about how the gop can come back politically. the quickest possible way politically with a contracting economy, if it happened again in the next quarter, that's a recession.
>> shrinking the economy is a gop plan for a quick comeback? a sowerer economy is worth it if it distracts obama ? folks, they really mean this. but despite it all. , the economy is improving under this president. we now have 35 straight months of private sector job growth . we've also learned today the economy added over 2 million jobs last year. the best year for the jobs since 2005 . republicans are playing politics with people's lives. they're obsessed with cuts instead of jobs. they're focused on spending instead of hiring. the president kept his job because the american people trust him to create jobs for them. republicans just don't get it. joining me now is melissa harris perry and dana millbank. republicans say this consumer bureau could hurt wall street . but, today, the dow closed over 14,000 for the first time in six years. so what's this really all about?
>> well, look, this is the mind trick . this is the game of redirection that the republicans have been playing really for the first four years of president obama 's first term and they're continuing to play it. and it is this. the thing that caused the economic crash in 2008 , the home values, the evaporation of wealth, the loss of jobs were the decisions made by those one percenters on wall street . and what happened is they redirected, they changed the conversation so that suddenly we'd be worried about the deficit instead of worried about wall street . this consumer financial bureau, the protection bureau, set up under elizabeth warpen, this focus on regulating banks the reality that we had been raided by wall street , that all of that got turned around so that instead, it somehow became a govpt deficit problem when it was never that.
>> and it was that deregulation that caused us to have a problem. and dana , if we go back, because a lot of people forget where we came from and how we were able to overcome some insurmountable odds to get where we are today even though we have a long way to go. if you go back to when president obama came into aufsz office, 2009 , on the eve of february 2009 jobs report, which turned out to be the worst in 34 years, the president called for action on the stimulus package . let me show you what the president said.
>> the time for talk is over. the time for action is now. because we know that if we do not act, a bad situation will become dramatically worse. and i refuse to let that happen. we can't delay and we can't go back to the same, worn out ideas that let d us here in the first place.
>> that was at the very beginning of his first term. he says we can't go back to the same ideas which was deregulation which was tax cuts for the top, all of that. then they want, again, change the language as melissa says, we went from talking about stimulus to deficit. and like we could cut our way out of debt. and when you look at the comparison between private sector job growth under president obama and under george w. bush , more than 650,000 private sector jobs were lost you should bush while so far more than 470,000 private sector jobs had been added under president obama . so when you look at where we started, look at the comparison they're really trying to play with our minds.
>> there's a terrific irony going on here. each month you have the republicans saying a ha, the job growth isn't as high as it should be. or saying a ha, the economy isn't growing at the pace that it should be. well, why isn't it? that's because the republicans succeeded in getting the government to cut back its spending. so the reason the jobs growth has not been higher is because just as private sector job growth is increasing, government jobs are decreasing dramatically. so that's held back. why did the economy contract in the fourth quarter? well, consumer spending , con instructor spending, all of that is fine. so now they're saying, look, obama is failing because of the contraction their policies that we forced h imto put into place.
>> and these are actual numbers, melissa , 9,000 government jobs were lost in january. 74,000 government jobs lost in 2012 alone. 600,000 government jobs lost since february, 2010 . these are government jobs .
>> right. and two things. remember, a lot of these are jobs that are happening at the state level. these are governors and local administrators, even mayors, who are cutting their city and state budgets. what we know is in 2010 , we had a huge overtake of these gubernatorial positions by republicans who are primary republicans who are cutting these government jobs , often jobs that provided an opportunity to lift into the middle class , so many working class people, especially people of color .
>> this is one of the reasons why the black unemployment numbers have not gone because we are over-indexed in the public sector . that the state and local republicans are cutting those programs, those agencies and those jobs.
>> and, remember --
>> and blaming it on obama .
>> and we're over-represented there because it is the one place where the laws of antidiscrimination have been most clearly taken care of. it has been hard to get the pry vat sector to focus affirmatively on furthering the possibility of diverse work force . but government had been able to do its at the sate level. so cutting jobs, cutting a disproportionate share of the minority jobs and then blaming president obama for doing it and then saying oh, this is all worse under president obama while having no reflection on the federal system .
>> what's worlst is the ability to read what's going on. if you don't fight the public sector , you can't handle those of us that have a disproportionate amount in there. when you deal with the politics that we're looking at coming, the sequester, listen to what paul ryan said on "meet the press".
>> i think the sequester is going to happen because that $1.2 trillion in spending cuts, we can't lose those spending cults. we think these sequesters will happen because the democrats have opposed our efforts to replace those with others. sq but the same paul riyan that said -- let me show you what he himself a couple of months ago. he said he wanted to make sure the devastating cuts to defense would never occur. and he warned that nearly 44,000 jobs were at stake. now he's singing a different tune.
>> it's almost like a hostage situation here. they're saying you've got to do it our way or we'll torpedo the economy and you, the president and your party, will be blamed for that. that is something like what had happened over the last couple years. the problem now is that the president just won the election. there's a long time for the economy to recover even if they succeed in injekting more contraction their effects spoo the economy by taking yet more government spending out of it. it's a very dangerous theory and it's not a long term growth prospect for the republican party to say we'll gain in popularity.
>> and melissa , quickly, this obsession with spending cuts, everything that answers cut. what about having a good afternoon?
>> what about where we're going this evening? cut. look at the cut of session of republicans .
>> we have worked all year to reduce our budget deficit and to cut spending.
>> we have reduced the size and role of government. we've got to cut spending.
>> we'll continue to work on finding smarter ways to cut spending.
>> spend less.
>> when we know. when we know in terms of very clear, empirical evidence that austerity measures makes things worse. they will tell you as we saw governor romney do. corporations are people, my friend. and say governments don't create jobs. governments not only create them, but if we had allowed government spending to stay and to stimulate it, we would be in a position where we would have a much lower unemployment rate .
>> much lower and much more money out there consumers, people be spending money because they'd have it. and it would go back in the system. dana , melissa , thanks for your time. and be sure to watch melissa harris perry saturdays and sundays 10:00 a.m . here on 34rks snbc.
>> coming up, what a day in politics. scott brown is not running and now geraldo rivera may be geraldo?
>> plus, george bush 's brain is much, much bigger than the meltdown on fox news. america is changing. the president knows it, but republicans don't.
>>> and my thoughts of ed koch passing, my friend and political opponent for decades. you're watching "politics nation" on msnbc.