The Ed Show | January 24, 2011
>> let's get rapid fire response from our panel. our topic, republican majority leader eric cantor will not denounce birther talk. with us tonight, host of grit tv on free speech tv, laura flanners and also cohost of america's morning news, amy holmes . great to have you both with us tonight. i'm taken after all the discussion about the president's citizenship, you have the new leaders of the congress over in the house. they simply will not come right out and say, this is not an issue. forget it. forget the birther movement. we've got other things to do. he just stops at the water's edge. why is that?
>> you know, you're pointing out a good thing. it is very hard for these folks to reach across the aisle. perhaps it's because their arms are so full of their bear hug with the birthers. i mean, the point here is, well, among other things, distraction. made in the usa. the president is almost nothing else is. that's the point. where are the jobs, mr. cantor? that's what americans really need to hear. this is just an effort to keep people distracted and be a good little birther boy that you're wanting to be taken seriously as a politician but as no foe of the birthers either. you can't have it both ways, mr. cantor.
>> amy , what did you think of the exchange we played earlier? why won't the republican leadership flat out say forget all this. he is an american citizen . it just seems like they stop and then turn and ask the media why are we talking about it?
>> well, i think laura is right, actually, that this is a distraction and the media wants it to be a distraction away from the very jobs issues republicans and democrats are trying to address. look, eric cantor in that exchange with david gregory made it clear that the birthers are a fringe element, that they have no place in main stream republican party .
>> he didn't say fringe and he didn't say crazy.
>> he made it clear over and over again that this has nothing to do with the republican agenda. the republican agenda is moving forward. he could sit around and denounce all sorts of views across his party that he disagrees with.
>> but amy there are people in his caucus that believe that the president is not an american citizen and he will not denounce that. and dennis kucinich whom you have as an honored guest often on your show believes in ufos. we have hillary clinton who went down to the senate floor in 2002 waving around the new york post saying bush knew about 9/11.
>> you're changing the subject. you're very cleverly changing the subject.
>> a big difference here.
>> we never hear democrats asked to denounce a large element of their own party that believes president bush was behind 9/11.
>> without challenging the authority of the president, that's serious stuff. it has historical resonance, obviously racial resonance when you start doubting about who is really an american. that's why this is so hard to let go of.
>> hold on, both of you. just a moment. i want to stay focused without examples that have absolutely nothing to do with this story. the fact of the matter is, that republican leadership will not turn to people in their caucus, amy , and say, knock it off. this isn't what we're about. they just will not denounce it. why won't they denounce it, amy ?
>> what they have done is sidelined those people, that eric cantor said over and over there is no place in the republican agenda for this belief. this belief system will not be advanced by republicans or republican leadership. he said this. but where this story i think is relevant is that democratic leadership is never asked to denounce members of their own party who were insinuating that president bush knowingly murdered 3,000 fellow americans and we are talking about a sitting united states senator from new york who is now the secretary of state. she has never been asked to clarify why she went down to the senate floor with "the new york post" that said, " bush knew ."
>> all right. that is so far out of bounds.
>> this is the vince foster of this administration. again, let's go back to the real questions on the table here. the questions have to do, frankly, talk about tables, what else did eric cantor say this weekend? he said that not cancer research , not medicare, not medicaid, not social security , none of it is off the table. that's what we need to be talking about. if he needs to pitch to his face he needs to pitch something more than just this sort of who is an american talk against the president.
>> laura flanders , amy holmes , thanks