The Ed Show | December 10, 2010
SCHULTZ: some rapid-fire response from our panel on these stories, tonight. I'll get their take on Sarah Palin 's trip to Haiti and her 2012 ambitions. The Democrats are furious that the so-called compromise on the estate tax will let more than 40,000 millionaires and multimillionaires off the hook. That, in my opinion is a moral outrage. And of course, the president brings out Bill Clinton , an old friend, to sell his tax cut case to the American people . Will it work? With us tonight, Joe Madison , XM Satellite radio talk show host and Ernest Istook , former republican congressman and now fellow at the Heritage Foundation . Sarah Palin , first tonight, gentlemen. Joe , you went down to Haiti right when the earthquake took place. You know exactly what the devastation is all about. Are you somewhat offended that at this late date, she is using this as a backdrop to show that she's so compassionate, yet she wants to deny benefits, insurance unemployment benefits to Americans who've been displaced? Your take on this.
JOE MADISON, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: I don't have time to be offended because the people of Haiti right now have a cholera outbreak that is killing literally thousands of people, but you know, here's the real deal and we'll know how phony this is. Will she come back and try to tell those United States senators in her party that are holding up funding for Haiti right now. This is what most people don't understand. Much of the money that was pledged by the United States and other nations are being held up. And who's holding them up? Once again, the party of no has said no to the Haitian people who need this money desperately.
SCHULTZ: Ernest , what about that?
MADISON: When we came back, I just want to say this.
MADISON: When we came back, we hit the halls of Congress . We hit the news media. We hit your show. We went around and tried to shake the money loose and get people to do something about what this country had committed, this government had committed to the people of Haiti . Let's see if she does that.
SCHULTZ: Ernest , what do you think?
ERNEST ISTOOK, FORMER GOP CONGRESSMAN: Yes, sure, Ed. Let me address something about both the Sarah Palin and the situation and about the situation in Haiti . The earthquake in Haiti was, what, something like 11 months ago. You still need people that are going there. Still need people that are focusing attention on this situation. Whether it's you know, Bill Clinton has been doing a lot of things, actor, Sean Penn have been over there. I'm coming to that.
SCHULTZ: The issue is her hard-line stance on unemployment in America versus helping other people out in another country , what about that?
ISTOOK: Ed , I'm coming around to both of the things that you asked me about, OK? But, you know, let's not criticize anybody if you're going to Haiti . Is there a double purpose because it also, you know, strengthens her street cred on foreign issues, yes, it is. But for someone to help bring spotlight in Haiti don't criticize that. When Joe's talking about the foreign assistance from the U.S. government from the U.S. government from Haiti , for goodness sake, the reason that that hasn't been funded is the Congress didn't pass a single appropriations bill . They're months overdue and they haven't been put on the president's desk. They didn't even try to pass that bill. They didn't bring it up. Now, what you're talking about unemployment, Ed.
ISTOOK: OK, all right, first of all, you know, we know the U.S. has a greater responsibility for its own and then for other countries even as sympathetic as we are. But you know, Ed , we're paying out huge amounts on unemployment. We've extended it up to 99 weeks and there is a problem with how long you keep extending unemployment. Just because whether it's unemployment, Haiti or any other situation, there's a point at which you've provided the help that you should be providing and other people need to be stepping up for themselves.
SCHULTZ: So, you're saying that there are limits. I guess, there are limits about how you are supposed to feel about when people go through an earthquake, too.
MADISON: There are no limits on humanity. I don't care how desperate we are. Excuse me, I don't care how desperate we are in the United States . And Ernest , you should go on the trip with her and let me tell you, you'll come back with a different attitude about shaking that.
ISTOOK: It's a horrible situation there, sure. And I 've contributed towards helping it, I sure have.
MADISON: Well, it shouldn't take 12 months to get there, and what I'm saying to you is she should walk the halls. She should walk the halls of Congress , shake the money loose.
SCHULTZ: All right.
MADISON: Just don't go for the photo-op.
ISTOOK: Pending in the Congress . Thanks, Ed. Thanks, Joe .
SCHULTZ: Joe Madison , I've got to ask you, should the Democrats hold the line against the estate tax or is this a cave to the Republicans ? How's this going to come down?
MADISON: They've got yes, hold the line. That would be the one thing they can do. They have to hold the line on this one. And then I think after that, turn your -- your proverbial political gun on the Republicans .
SCHULTZ: Ernest , why is this so important to the Republicans when it really doesn't affect that many Americans ?
MADISON: Thirty five hundreds or something, 35,000.
ISTOOK: And you are right, most of it, just like most of the income taxes are paid by a small percentage of Americans . You're talking about people who have already paid the lion share of the income tax and now you want a double dip with the death tax as well. That's part of the problem.