PoliticsNation | February 21, 2013
>>> we have always understood that when times change, so must we. progress does not compel us to settle centuries long debates about the role of government for all time. but it does require us to act in our time.
>> on issue after issue, president obama and the american people are in agreement. and he's been selling his message in interviews around the country.
>> i want to make sure that we have a pathway to citizenship. that is earned by folks that are here undocumented.
>>> we want to affirm that when you purchase a gun, you're not somebody who's got a felony. .
>>> i think same-sex couples should have rights and be treated like everybody else .
>> a new poll shows the side with the american president on his second term agenda. they support his policies by 17 points over the republicans. on climate change , they support him by 21 points. on raising the minimum wage , 45 point. and even on the contentious issue of gun control , he still holds an advantage over the g
oh, p: the president is ready to do the will of the american people . the time is now.
>> they want us to do some work. now is a good time for us to get some things done.
>> republicans need to open their ears and listen to the american people . joining me now, joan walsh and angela rye. how can republicans be so disconnect frd the will of the american people ?
>> i think when folks really focus on winning elections and not representing people, you lose sight of what's most important. public service is just that.
>> we've seen it with interracial marriage. we've seen it throughout time. and sometimes you have to help folks to see what really matters and how to move them ahead on issues that they may be uncomfortable with. the american public has shifted. the party is still the same, but they're focused on winning elections.
>> angela 's point, some of them were contentious, some of them were the majority, but slightly. but when you look at minimum wage , joan, 71% of americans want to see minimum wage increase. 71%. how can the gop oppose 71% of the country. these polls are national, but increasing what you have is really like two nations. you have these red states and these red districts and you have house gerrymandering so that all of these -- many of these republicans think about is their next election, as angela said and a primary challenge from the right. a and i think we have to understand that he's doirng the right thing for their state. so they're really going to restrict his legacy. they're going to try to make it harder for him to solve the problems. but this is a kind of success on their very limited red state terms. i think we have to acknowledge that. it's not about nationwide reasoning or logic. it's about pure, backwards looking politics.
>>> angela , you worked on the hill. take me inside a republican caucus . take me inside. what happens in these caucuses that they're so removed from reality in the street? i don't understand and i don't think the viewers do, the culture of what goes on in these caucuses that make them come out and vote this way. .
>> again, with the republican conference, thank god i never had to be in a meeting, i'm not exactly sure. but what i can say is that tomorrow, someone is going to have some way to justify that these polling results are not legitimate in some way, shape or form. they will continue to argue this. they identify as republican party members. there are others that have shift today be more conservative and are now independent. but at the end of the day , their base is shifting. they can shift with their base based on what these polling results say. our r or they can continue in the conference meetings that are not off base.
>> they're looking at their districts, some of which have been gerrymandered. so even if the national polls say 71% minimum wage , they're saying, yeah, but my district is not saying that. i suppose that is why the president and those that agree with him, somebody else is not going to suffer. you're going to suffer where you are even in conservative districts if we cannot stop this sequester.
>> well, right, reverend ael. you and i have talked about this before.
>> they've come to believe that government helps other people and not them. but when you get down to these cuts, there is a way for the president and democrats and for reasonable people to reach over these leaders and make clear what they're going to do. and i think that's what the president is doing. hoping that the more he talks and the wider he has message goes, he can reach people they cling to it because it has represented something else in the pass.
>> if the american people understand you're talking about meat inspectors not being there, which is going to increase your meat, not left meat or right meat, that you're going to have long lines at the airport, not the republican airlines. the people understand the people will suffer because they don't want to close loopholes on private jets and yachts. then it's a little different.
>> yeah, they are your neighbor's interest. this absolutely will directly impact you from social security to education programs.
>> when you go to the suturer market, they're not going to ask for your id and party affiliation.
>> still ahead, the new darling of the tea party , ted cruz makes some outrageous comments about president obama . you'll want to hear this. plus, more from my interview with the president. his thoughts on rosa parks and the continuing struggle for civil rights .
>> it's been a tough couple of months for mitt romney . it's been tough to be mitt roam knee. thank you, america. god bless you. >