The Rachel Maddow Show | February 04, 2013
>>> why should you vote for me? because i do not wear high heels .
>> i'm not a witch.
>> seamed remedies. why won't you answer whsecond amendment remedies.
>> if it's a legitimate rain, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.
>> todd akin , richard mourdock , sharron angle , ken buck, a the republicans's recent history of trying to win very winnable recent senate seats, and losing those seats because they picked really fringe ridiculous candidates. those interest type of candidates that karl rove 's superpac now says it hopes to prevent from winning republican senate primaries going forward. i want wonder if they can do that. i wonder if they should. joining us now is frank rich , writer at large for "new york" magazine. frank, it is always a pleasure. thanks for being here.
>> thanks for having me.
>> people don't take advice from us when we give it to them, but i think we should give it to them anyway. it's not hard to see merits on both sides of this fight. the right is very upset with karl rove for even suggesting this, let alone pursuing it. and, juvenile, the tea partiers have given us todd akin and sharron angle . at the same time, karl rove 's group picked winners 1% of the time or less in the last election. so who has the electoral credibility to win this argument?
>> in a way, i think it's the party, the tea party side of things. as you showed in that poll, steve king is ahead in iowa because that's actually the base of the party. that's what they want. o and so it's very easy for karl rove to saunter in and say oh, well, we'll stop this. you can't fight something with nothing. he did not back a single winning candidate last year. so what is going to happen? that is the republican party . that's why they win primaries, and the republican party has a more serious problem, which is that's 30% of the country that holds those views, maybe more or less. they can win primaries. they can never win national elections. but what is this republican establishment that rove represents? it's money people. but where are the voters within the republican party . it's not just tea party , it's the real base of the republican party whether they call themselves tea partiers or not. this is what they want.
>> i was struck by how unified the reaction against rove was on the right. i mean, all of the influential -- all of the right-wing blogs that are influential enough that a liberal like me knows to go read them.
>> all of them unified flaul influential enough, all of them disgusted with karl rove . it seems as though this is a very good day for steve king , the guy that the establishment needs to destroy, that is the best vote of confidence steve king has ever had. i am sure if he was never going to run for senate he will now. all the media, particularly the on-line media is unified here. is there a way for them to fight it or do they really just have to surrender?
>> i think they have to surrender, i think what rove's game was, he lost a hundred million bucks from his donors, the people who basically support him. and so he wants their money. he said -- and what you showed. he said i'm going to do this by running ads, and stuff. well, that is not going to do it. the party is what it is, and so this idea that it is something else is a fantasy and they're going to have to get real about it and face the party they have and change it from within. not by stunts involving spending money on advertising.
>> and how does that effort, them trying to change the party from within on both sides? i mean both sides are used to seeing themselves as insurgents. neither one likes to be called the establishment. karl rove says he is always standing up against the liberal media , like he is an activist with a plackard instead of an activist with hundreds of millions. how does that affect them in government coalition, particularly with democrats in stuff they want to do?
>> well, they're way far away from that. the classic example is immigration. they know it is an existential threat, we have heard the establishment. the karl roves, the john mccains say oh, surely now we'll get behind the gang of 8 and do the immigration reform . they can't get the house contingent to support even that, which is like a knife at the heart of the republican party demographically. so it shows this will be a long battle within the gop that will rage on for quite a while. not least because the biggest donors are not necessarily in tune with the base. some are, like the coke brothers, but others on wall street are not with the base like on immigration, abortion, gay rights .
>> taxes only.
>> taxes only.
>> it will be really interesting to see on guns, thinking about president obama out in minnesota today with all the cops standing behind him. on background checks in particular, 92 public support for universal background checks . if republicans can't figure out a way to support something that has 92% to support the republicans and democrat also on that, i think, i don't know what happens next on them. it will be fascinating.
>> it will be fun to watch from our point of view.
>> okay, you can turn your tv back on, we're leaving. frank rich , thank you.
>>> appreciate it.
>>> next, president obama skeet-shooting photo that of course is outrageous and fake, and communist and kenyan or something, we'll be