The Ed Show | February 20, 2013
>>> good evening, americans , and welcome to "the ed show" from new york. john boehner plays the blame game again. it exposes the weak underbelly of the republican party . this is "the ed show." let's get to work.
>> i don't like the sequester.
>> the outrageous, phony fight to blame the president reaches new lows.
>> i would liked to have not had the guester in the first place.
>> john boehner 's sequester lies are exposed. republicans refuse to compromise, and the middle class americans are nine days away from getting the shaft yet again. dnc chair debbie wasserman schultz weighs in.
>>> a hack job drives the right-wing assault on president obama 's pick for defense. tonight the source of the friends of hamas spear has been identified. and it is truly a joke.
>>> plus, disgusting cuts to unemployment cripple the poor in north carolina . the pizza man goes on fox news and calls obama voters stupid?
>>> and the man who gave the world sarah palin is getting destroyed by tea partiers in arizona.
>> you said build the dang fence where. is the fence?
>> good to have you with us tonight, folks. thanks for watching. speaker boehner 's lies, well, they are finally catching up with him. the truth has a funny way of coming back to haunt you, doesn't it? today president obama continued to tell the public about the damage to expect if the automatic budget cuts from the sequester are not averted. here is a good reason the president is keeping the pressure on. polls show the public will blame republicans . in the latest survey, a majority of americans do not support the republican priorities in congress. those priorities include cuts, cuts, and more cuts, and a lot of hurt. but house speaker john boehner has been trying to avoid the blame game by putting the sequester around the president's neck.
>> we're weeks away from the president's sequester, and the president laid out no plan to eliminate the sequester and the harmful cuts that will come as a result of it.
>> remember that. he is saying the president's sequester. all right. let's move on. boehner 's lackeys in congress are happy to repeat the speaker's talking points .
>> the day that the devastating sequestration cuts, the president's sequestration cuts take effect, and we have yet to hear a plan from the president.
>> well, that's two. first boehner and now his lackey. well, the water carriers over at fox news, they're happy to push the same propaganda.
>> all right. the cuts are not smart. they're not fair. they're going to hurt the economy. but what the president didn't mention, that the sequester, that was his idea in the first place.
>> not smart, not fair. it was his idea? let's keep adding it up, boys. today john boehner fired off his latest shot in this blame game . he took to the pages of the " wall street journal " to accuse the president of the united states of creating a financial crisis . boehner said the president's sequester is now eminent. but the daily beast website released some information today to knock down boehner 's accusations. you see, back in 2011 , boehner 's office developed a power point presentation for house republicans . it was a two-step approach, but it actually contained three steps. first of all, no tax hikes. of course that's typical. spending cuts extending the debt ceiling increase, and spending caps. but while pushing those spending caps, boehner did what? he highlighted a special trigger mechanism -- sequestration. boehner was selling this idea to his caucus as a good way to make sure that they were going to be able to get the cuts that they really wanted. boehner loved the sequester. he said it would be a great way to make sure spending is cut across the board, and that's what the republicans wanted. when the bill was signed, boehner told the country, he told everybody just how much he loved it.
>> when you look at this final agreement that we came to with the white house , you know, i got 98% of what i wanted. i'm pretty happy.
>> wait a minute now. i thought it was the president's plan. see, folks, the lying just keeps coming. boehner continued his lies in an op-ed today. he said the president got his higher taxes, $600 billion from higher earners and no spending cuts at the end of 2012 . well, let's do a little math for the speaker of the house . $1.2 trillion is greater than $600 billion. john boehner should know this. he did the math before. in fact, he was one of 174 republicans in the house of representatives who voted for the budget control act of 2011 . those republicans , what did they get? they got $1.2 billion in cuts to set up by the sequester by passing the bill. then there was the parting shot today by boehner . the sequester is a product of the president's own failed leadership. my friends, i present to you tonight that boehner is not only a liar, but he could teach a master class in failed leadership. because, you see, he is the speaker who just can't get his caucus to support any of his own proposed bills. he is the guy who is bringing in members to work really hard only 126 days this year. he is the elected leader who doesn't care if republicans lose their job and americans lose their jobs.
>> if some of those jobs are lost in this, so be it. we're broke. it's time for us to get serious about how we're spending the nation's money.
>> so on one hand, they say that the president doesn't want the make cuts, but now that we're coming down to the wire, they're blaming him for the sequester when 174 republicans voted on it. does it sound like everything is adding up to you? john boehner is coming up empty on the sequester fight. but what he is counting on, your stupidity. he is hoping you don't remember the summer of 2011 . he is hoping that you don't remember the budget control act. he is hoping that you'll just forget all of this stuff and it's this damn guy obama who doesn't know anything about the economy, and we should have elected mitt romney , but now we're stuck with this, we got to do these cuts. excuse, excuses, excuses. so hollow, they have an identity crisis on the republican side right now and they just don't know how to deal with it. so the best way to deal with it, just lie to the public. we'll get hannity to lie too. we'll get all of fox folks to lie about it. we'll get some backup that we need. and maybe we'll hoodwink just enough people to blame the president. we'll get all these it cuts and pin it on him and say it's his economy. get your cell phones out. i want to know what you think. tonight's question. does john boehner know the meaning of leadership? text "a" for yes and text b for no. you can always go to our blog. joining me debbie wasserman schultz . congresswoman, good to have you with us tonight.
>> thank you, ed. great to be with you.
>> how do the republicans get away with this lying? they're banking on the american people being stupid what other conclusion with can we come to?
>> you know, the further evidence is that here i am in south florida , and as much as i love being home with my constituents and my family, if the speaker and the republicans in the house are really serious about reaching a compromise with the president, why aren't we in session? why did they all vote to adjourn last week when democrats said we needed to stay in washington and hammer out a compromise? we've got eight days left, ed. the clock is kicking. and at the end of that eight days you're going to have 70,000 kids kicked off headstart. you're going to have cuts to education and health care . i was just at a community meeting in my district where i had constituents who were concerned about the cutback in hours that the irs offices locally have had.
>> and you know what the sequester is going to do? it's going to shut offices like that down because of furloughs. we need to make sure that we focus on a balanced approach to reducing our deficit, heed the president's call for us to compromise and stop this my way or the highway politics. and, you know, i think the proof is in the pudding . there are republican members of congress who have publicly stated that this sequester is their leverage so that they can finally get the spending cuts that they want and to show that they're serious about spending cuts. well, this is going to be serious, all right.
>> here is another line from speaker boehner 's op-ed today. he says the president has put forth no detailed plan that can pass congress. is that correct?
>> that's just simply not correct. we've already done $2.5 trillion in deficit reduction of a $4 trillion grand bargain that speaker boehner walked away from. there are significant spending cuts and revenue in that plan. you know, what i'd like to know is name -- why hasn't john boehner or any of the republicans in the congress named one tax loophole that they're willing to close for a wealthy person so that we can reduce this deficit in a balanced and responsible way? where is their plan? it's nonexistent.
>> where are you going to get new revenue when the republicans have drawn a line in the sand ? how are you going to do this?
>> look, during the entire campaign last year, mitt romney and all the republican leadership that i heard said they were in favor of closing loop tax holes. that was one of the few things we agreed on. so why can't we close the loophole that allows for a tax break on having a corporate jet ? how about ending wasteful oil company subsidies when they are making hundreds of billions of dollars?
>> yes. it's just stunning.
>> there is a lot of fat out there that you could go get in the tax code , but getting the republicans to get on board with you on that, that would mean they would have to work with the president, and i think that's part of the equation too. congresswoman debbie wasserman schultz at home getting an earful tonight from constituents.
>> it's unfortunate.
>> great to have you with us on the program.
>> now let's turn to karen finney, former communications director of the dnc. steve benin with us as well, msnbc political contributor and producer for "the rachel maddow show." great to have both of you with us. karen , you first. it's hard to believe this would be a long-term strategy. but this power point strategy that has been unearthed from the summer of 2011 is very telling. what do you make of it?
>> it is very telling, ed. but one of the things we have learned about this republican party for some time now is they are very comfortable speaking out of both sides of their mouth. i mean, here you have on the one hand they're saying we know part of the reason we lost. we've got to get out there and talk about working people and talk about middle class people, and yet on the other side, as we just were hearing from the chairman of the democratic party , they refuse to name even one cut that would impact some of those higher earners. they refuse -- you know, they refuse to accept the fact that we need more revenue. it's not just -- we can't cut our way simply to where we need to be.
>> it is their dishonesty.
>> it is.
>> they had 174 republicans vote for this, and now they're trying to hang it on the president.
>> that's right. and to quote hillary clinton , at a point, even though they all voted for it, and he was part of -- boehner was part of selling it, who cares. the point is at this point, get back to the table and come up with a plan, with a deal. the president has said i'm willing to meet with you.
>> steve , if they say no revenue, where do the democrats go from here?
>> i think they don't go niwa. at this point, the process has stalled. there are no talks there are no back channel productions. this are no progress in reaching a resolution and we're really only eight days away . democrats cannot cave and give republicans everything they want, even though i think they're facing some pressure from the political establishment to try and do that in order to work something out. i think at this point all evidence suggests they're going to push into march. that the sequestration cuts are going to happen, and because they really have no choice there is no compromise on the table. there is no opportunity to really work out a deal with republicans who refuse to negotiate or accept any concessions. and with that in mind, i think the consensus among democrats that i talked to on capitol hill today is that the sequester will happen. hopefully that will ratchet up the pressure some more. they'll be able to return to maybe some state of negotiations in march before the severe damage really kicks in. but at this point, there is no hope of any kind of resolution between now and eight days from now.
>> this is a sample of how some in the conservative media are blaming the president.
>> he will inflict maximum pain on us, the taxpayer and the economy if we go through with just a 2% redoes in spending.
>> dishonesty is all over the place, karen .
>> it is. and, again, they're not talking about how we got here, which was the budget control act. and how did we get to the budget control act? because john boehner couldn't control his caucus. don't forget, that's how we got into this mess in the first place. as you pointed out, talk about a lack of leadership, my goodness.
>> steve , isn't this what the republicans have wanted all along? across-the-board cuts. i know they're very concerned about defense spending and defense projects, because it's in the backyard of a lot of these republicans . but across-the-board cuts is really what they wanted all along, because this is going to force the democrats to possibly go after the big three. what about that?
>> i think there is something to that. i mean clearly their hopes all along were the sequester, as damaging as it is gives them the cuts that they want without any real revenue. the president was able to get $600 billion in revenue towards the end of last year. but at this point republicans are thinking no more revenue, no more compromising, and they want a deal that has 100% cuts, zero percent revenue. and for all the ills, all the damage it's going to do the military, the economy, the public needs, this neat meets the republicans ' test which is more they want than anything else.
>> i would like to see the speaker say there was never really any power point. it was just somebody playing with the optics.
>> it's coming.
>> karen finney and steve benen, thanks for being with us on "the ed show." thank you so much. remember to answer the question at the bottom of the screen. we always love to get your input on everything. and follow us at twitter and ed show on facebook. we like to know what you think.
>>> last night we told you how republicans used whacked out websites to make real decisions. tonight, here we go. round two. another unbelievable story about a joke, how a joke becomes a republican talking point.