The Ed Show | November 13, 2012
>>> good evening, americans, and welcome to "the ed show" from new york. the president has told progressive leaders he's not budging on taxes.
>> we're prepared to stand up for mechaniamerica.
>> the campaign for the middle class begins at the white house , and the campaign pour millionaires has begun on the senate floor.
>> half the congress opposes tax hikes.
>> tonight, mary kay henry of the service employees international union and senator brown on the new campaign for the middle class . paul ryan is finally speaking, and he's still in the bubble.
>> i think the surprise was some of the turnout. some of the turnout especially in urban areas .
>> ohio state senator turner is here to respond. the petition to see seed is growing with speed.
>> deep in the heart of texas !
>> find out why i agree with rick perry . texas is not allowed to leave the union. thanks for watching. president obama came back to washington to fight for fair deal on taxes. today he called on his base. i love it. he went right to the folks who put him in the white house . president obama held his first official closed door meeting with groups from outside the white house . the invited guests were all leaders of labor organizations and progressive think tanks . compare this list to the guest list for tomorrow's meeting. 12 of the most powerful ceos in american business. this schedule was not a mistake. president obama was letting the middle class and the workers of this country know, you come first! aflcio president is confident the president will keep his commitment to the current tax rates for the middle class .
>> the president led with that notion of protecting the middle class , and now you have republicans that have it in their power. they could sign a bill tomorrow that protects the middle class , and we'll see what they do. are we going to push them on that? without a doubt we're going to push them on that. are we going to collectively stand up and make sure that workers get a fair shake in all of this? absolutely, we are. do we believe that the president is committed to that same thing? absolutely, we do.
>> details of the president's off the record meeting are emerging. the huffington post reports tonight that president obama said he will not extend the bush tax cuts for those at the top. i am not going to budge. i said it in 2010 and i'm not going to do -- i'm going only going to do this once, and i meant it. the source said that the president seemed to agree that social security should not be part of any grand bargain, because it didn't add to the deficit. democrats are in a strong position. republicans are trying to make it seem like they are also in a strong position. listen to minority leader in the senate mitch mcconnell talk tough on the senate floor today.
>> if the president is really serious about solving current crises and avoiding future ones, he has it to step up and lead.
>> mcconnell was so bold when he was confronted by reporters. he sat silently during a photo op with new republican senators.
>> senator mcconnell , are you willing to compromise?
>> come on guys, go. come on.
>> can you not push me and everybody else ?
>> mcconnell is not responding because he doesn't have an answer. democrats won decisively last week. they protected 23 seats and picked up two more. plus, mcconnell 's plan is exactly what the american people voted against.
>> the best way forward , the way that will lead to jobs and growth, a smaller deficit and fewer fights is to keep everybody's tax rights where they are for now. figure out a way to avoid the automatic defense cuts scheduled to hit at the end of the year without cutting a penny less than we promised. and committing to the kind of comprehensive tax and entitlement reform that we all claim we want.
>> according to mitch mcconnell the best way forward is to do exactly what he wants. this is not going to fly with the public. a new pew poll shows 53% of the american people will blame republicans if the country goes over the fiscal cliff. only 29% would blame the president of the united states . house speaker john boehner has less support each day for a hard line approach. republican opposition to tax increases is slipping in congress. anti-tax lobbyist grover norquist no longer as a majority of supporters in either chamber. "the hill" says newly elected republicans refuse to sign the anti-tax pledge during the campaigns and another handful of returning republicans have disavowed their alliance to the written commitment. it's about time. at least they paid attention to the election. today bobby jindal scolded the entire party for the approach to the economy. hold it right there. this comment, he sewer sounds like a democrat. we've got to make sure that weren't the party of big business , big banks, big wall street bailouts, big corporate loopho loophole, big anything. we cannot be, we must not be the party that simply protects the rich so they get to keep their toys. bobby, come on over to the good side, dude. you're talking like a conservative democrat . momentum is on the president's side. he just needs to know how motivated his allies are. the hard work didn't end last tuesday. democrats scored big, but they need to finish this game. the labor leaders who met with the president of the united states today made it very clear. they will stay engaged, and they will do whatever it takes to go to the public to tell the story. the campaign of last year is not over.
>> we're united in a campaign throughout this country.
>> we're going into another campaign. we won the election, but we're going into another campaign now. folks realize na and understand it.
>> we need to stay as engaged as we were in the election.
>> we expressed our commitment to keep this campaign going.
>> okay. they are focused. i have to ask the question tonight. let's say we're in the big locker room here. are you focused? are you ready to do this? you know, if we put half the effort into making sure the president gets what he needs from his base as we did working on voter suppression and voter registration , we will get what we have to get to turn this country around financially. what i don't want to see the democrats do is go out and do a long-term deal. no, no, no. do a short-term deal. make it two years. let's come back and revisit this for 2014 . i say that because it will be certainly an election year issue. most of all, if we can start getting money into the treasury and make some progress and just start to chip away at it and move it down and prove that the wealthiest americans can pay a little bit more and we can make some progress with the treasury, it will be a great time to really put the hammer down in 2014 and prove to the country that we're headed in the right direction. just remember the chart that we always love to show on this program. the vulture chart. the red liners up there, don't tell me that they can't pay a little bit more. it encourages me big-time when i hear the president off the record -- i don't know how it slipped out of the meeting, but somebody said that wasn't going to budge. that's music to my ears. that should be motivating to every american who voted for this president we'll get what we want out of this. we're going to fix the treasury. there will be cuts, but those wealthiest americans , the vultures on the top line have to pay more. get your cell phones out. tonight's question, do you support the fight over the fiscal cliff? text a for president obama and the democrats and text b for the republicans to 622639 or go to our blog. we'll bring you the results later in the show. joins me now is u.s. senator sherrod brown . we have nina turner coming up later on.
>> i love watching nina on your show.
>> i get you passionate ohio folks mixed up.
>> that's okay.
>> sherrod brown with us and mary kay henry , president of the services employment international union who met with the president today. i would be remiss, mary kay , if i did not ask you right off the bat, did the president say he was not going to budge on taxes? he did it once in 2010 , and he won't do it again?
>> the president was incredibly serious and focused and really relieved to hear that we are going to keep our ground game going, that our working people and community members all across this country are ready to have this fight and want to have the middle class tax cuts permanently extended. that's the action that congress can take right now. and then work together to make sure that the wealthiest americans pay their fair share so we can get back to work.
>> well, did he tell the group that he was not going to budge on taxes?
>> he was crystal clear about that, yes.
>> so you're confirming the huffington post report tonight that he said that he moved in 2010 , and he won't do it again?
>> i don't know the exact words, ed, but he was very, very clear that what he said right after the election is that he believes he has a mandate from the majority of this nation thatments thatmenwants to make sure we can reinvigorate this economic recovery that he started in the first term. we're completely proud to have his back and to make sure that every american knows what's at stake in this debate.
>> senator brown, how do you take that information?
>> i take it the way i think he meant it. i talked to him the day after the election. he was pretty excited about carrying our state thanks to many including mary kay and her union and so many other people, grassroots union and nonunion all over the state. he was solid then. he says it again. he means it. i think that the organizing around it so very important. the labor movement , consumer groups, women's groups, advocates all over the country that care about more tax fairness. it's not just -- you don't just tax your way into a balanced budget or cut your way. you also grow your way, and there's going to be a jobs component on this with infrastructure and helping local governments and all the things that we should be doing to make sure we see the kind of economic growth we need to give people a shot at the middle class . most of america would rather pay taxes than they would drawing an unemployment check. that's what we operate under, that assumption, and we need as part of this taxing the wealthy to pay a little bit more and some reasonable balanced cuts, but more of a 1:1 ratio rather than what republicans want to do. you need a jobs component, too.
>> this comes down to negotiations, and from what is reported about what the president told the basers in that meeting today, doesn't that send a real hard line message to mitch mcconnell , and that's what's lacking in all of this?
>> i think mitch mcconnell is a little worried. you saw some of these people on election night . you saw karl rove 's response. you saw mcconnell the next day. you saw speaker boehner, who is the most -- i think the most flexible of the group. they know that they're going to have to come to the table and give on a lot of things. not just that we won the election, but when i see the organizing around the president's message. he'll travel the country and talk to people, and the country is overwhelmingly with him. even people that didn't vote for him, many think the rich should pay battle more and focus on jobs. when you put that together, it's clear that the president is in a good position to win this. it really is another campaign in so many ways.
>> ed, i think people think the negotiations happened for the last year in this country. we had a national debate on this question. the people have spoken. we want our government to answer the call. so for us, the issue of negotiating is we need the republican in the house to extend the middle class tax cuts permanently so they can show they're really serious about restoring the american middle class in this country.
>> all right. day one, getting everybody on the same page. it sounds good to me. senator brown and mary kay henry , the service employees international union . great to have you with us tonight, remember to answer tonight at the bottom of the screen. share your thoughts at twitter and on facebook. we're always looking for your comments. coming up, paul ryan 's first interview about the election and he seemed diluted about up some points. so much more coming up. stay