The Last Word | December 10, 2012
>>> we had a lot of candidates, quite frankly , that did dumb things out there. once the candidate wins the primary, becomes the republican nomination, the republican party has an obligation to that candidate. i don't think the republican party schooled their candidates very well or supported their candidates very well. we had at least two candidates that should have won that, frankly, lost because they said something stupid on the subject that their party's leaders should have schooled them to stay away from in the first place.
>> that was dick armey . in the spotlight tonight, republicans soul searching . mitt romney 's soul search to him to vegas at a boxing match . the republican national committee announced today the creation of the growth and opportunity project, a five-member independent committee that will consider what the republican party did wrong and make suggestions on how to fix it. at least one republican thinks that they won't be able to fix their problems by 2016 and be competitive in the next presidential campaign .
>> if their competitor in owe 16 is going to be hillary clinton and supported by a still popular barack obama , trying to win that will be truly the super bowl and the republican party is incapable of competing at that level.
>> ari, big surprise, rush limbaugh did not like that. he did not like newt gingrich saying that hillary is unbeatable. let's listen to rush.
>> we can't beat her. here we are on december 10th , 2012 , and we can't beat hillary in a presidential campaign in 2016 . i didn't know any of this. in fact, i don't even think this is a campaign now. it's a cornonation.
>> he kept talking about it after the show. he's much more negative about where the republicans stand now than he had time to go into on "meet the press" yesterday.
>> and he said he's trying to figure it out. he's thoughtfully taking time to contemplate.
>> he's a politician. he takes failure, he takes losses seriously. you had that time with him a couple weeks ago. he made the statement that he's underestimated barack obama twice, once last time when he thought he would lose to hillary who we just saw him praising and once this time. i think this really goes to the rethinking that the republican party has to do. the l.a. raiders used to say that only the intimidators get intimidated. newt gingrich has a different view here. the entire trend of history is moving against this party as currently constructed.
>> and remember, newt was the republican presidential candidate who got immigration right. he was the one who wasn't going over there. let's listen to more of what he said on "meet the press".
>> i think this is much more than mitt romney . we didn't blow it because of mitt romney . we blew it because of a party that is refusing to think through what the average american needs for a better future.
>> and the reality of american life includes this undocumented population which newt wanted to do something humane about and got actually booed once or twice for saying that. we now see a rush toward the center, presumably, on some kind of immigration reform with republicans.
>> right. i think we see a rush on every issue that has to do with sort of the core fabric of liberalism in american life , which is equal rights and opportunity for all. liberals have always gone to the mat for that but brought the country with them. we're seeing that in having a humane policy and seeing that in equality for marriage and we're going to see that go up to the supreme court and conservatives are going to have a hard time figuring out how to react to that and deal with the justice and politics of it.
>> hillary clinton , if she wants people to be quiet about 2016 , it's not working. she -- i have not seen a situation where four years ahead of time a party has had such a clear nonincumbent front-runner for a nomination.
>> and part of it cuts against i think one of the most misunderstood things about the last cycle which there was so legitimate he can assignment about barack obama , many people forget that was a 51-49 primary. not only the base that believed in her that time around but then what is accruing is that she is loyal to president obama and deserves a shot if we get there.
>> ari melber, thank you for joining me tonight.
>>> next, who is the most influential person in american politics in the last 30 years?
>>> and later, i'm going to sit here and write a big check on tv. [