tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC March 6, 2012 2:00pm-3:00pm PST
big idea. let's hear them. >> i fully agree with that. and it may still happen. well presented. thaung thank you. i'm dylan ratigan. hope to see you tomorrow. "hardball" with chris matthews is up right now. super tuesday. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews up in new york. a big night in politics. the agony of defeat. we're used to election nights in which either mitt romney or his nearest rival is threatened with massive defeat. finally tonight that could happen. if rick santorum can't win in ohio, he's probably busted. if he's beaten in ohio and tennessee, he's clearly busted. if gingrich wins in georgia and
nowhere else, he saves his dignity but probably only that. after weeks of negative campaigning by romney super pacs, he stands on the verge of victory. it's super tuesday. 424 delegates at stake. four candidates. msnbc will provide complete coverage beginning at 6:00 eastern. rachel maddow joins me along with al sharpton. joining me now is joe skar bow row and steve smith, who is chief star of "game change." he's a star for that. you come across so good at that. 11 states ahead in the polls. over 400 delegates. you can see them on the map. alaska, idaho, wyoming, north dakota, oklahoma, tennessee, ohio, vermont, massachusetts,
virginia, and georgia. let me start with joe, my colleague from the early morning. what are you looking at tonight for something to be truly effective, meaning for keeps? >> obviously, i actually think that santorum's one chance to knock out romney, a lot of people have been calling the romney campaign, it passed him last week. this is where we're looking for it to be a plea that romney is going to win and go on to tampa. i'm looking at ohio. if he wins there, it's over for santorum. the cake is baked as they say. also obviously, tennessee. here's a state that santorum was ahead by double digits just a week ago. you're looking at momentum. he was up by 7 points just a week ago in ohio. if romney comes back and goes ahead and wins one of those two states, i really do think that it's just about over. and we're going to start talking
about the matchup between barack obama and mitt romney. >> i think we're also in for a new kind of national politics. you raise a ton of money, spend it on negative ads to destroy your opponent. last night rick santorum talked about being an underdog. let's watch. >> when all the money, all the big endorsements, all the power players in washington, d.c. and all the party chieftons have lined up next to the guy with the most money. the people of america saw a guy from a little steel town in southwestern pennsylvania go out and take his message on the road in iowa. driving around in a dodge ram pickup with about 200,000 miles on it. >> he reminds me of jerry lewis after the telethon. that's where he's at.
he's going to walk alone after this. >> i think he was on the edge of controlling this race after missouri, colorado, and minnesota. then people started listening to him when he started speaking. his candidacy collapsed. eligibility has driven the ballot. that's why mitt romney is coming back. when people listen to rick santorum talk about that the separation of church and state makes him want to throw up, his insistence on sharing with the country how he uses contraception and his opinion about how everyone else should use it, it's led to him being rejected by voters. so i think mitt romney is back to where he was after florida. he's on the edge of being the nominee of the party. he has to win in ohio tonight. if he wins in tennessee, i think he seals the deal. >> someone said the only person they know about their birth com habits was themselves. was that you? >> 330 million people in the country. outside of my family, the only other person i know if they use
birth control or not. >> we now find out where mitt romney lives. we have a picture of live voting tonight in massachusetts. there he is voting. so we know where he lives. joe, we know where he lives. it's a massachusetts voter. not santa barbara, not michigan, not all those homes he's claimed. just the one he's allowed to vote in. >> no doubt about it it. but massachusetts and his governorship in massachusetts, what he did there with health care reform is going to come back and haunt him, not just tonight but moving forward. the biggest for the conservative base has been for what's been revealed over the past week. an op ed he wrote for the "usa today." statements he made to human events back in 2006. a "meet the press" appearance back in 2009 where he very clearly called for a national
individual mandate. the fact that mitt romney is going to put it away as he finds himself compromised on the right with the single issue that a lot of conservatives believe over the past two and a half years would define the 2012 race. that has now effectively been taken off the table. the obama team knows it and mitt romney's team know it is. so here we are, chris, tonight, we finally get to a point, i believe, where you have a long list of republican wanna bees starting with sarah palin and donald trump and michele bachmann and rick perry and herman cain and newt gingrich. all of these, and rick santorum of course. all of these people had one thing going for them. they were not mitt romney. and yet we end up at the end of the day, at the end of this ugly ugly campaign with mitt romney probably locking it up, for the most part, tonight.
it comes with a shadow of what he said in 2009 hanging over him and conservatives scratching their heads saying, what was this entire process about? we ended up with an incredibly flawed candidate moving forward. it's going to be hard to put this party back together. >> steve smith, i want to follow up on that. if this guy is flawed on the right because she's seen as an imperfect vessel, because he basically created obama care, does that help him in the the center? >> i think there's a strong argument to be made that the idea logical challenge, he can be a stronger candidate than he was a primary candidate. and certainly, i think they have a case to make. >> let's take a look at what you were saying, joe. let's look at the numbers now about what it's done to the republican party now. i think we're going to look now. you said it was taking a beat i
ing. our poll shows 40% of adults now say the opinions of the republican party has suffered as a result of this long primary season. did you sense that before you saw these numbers, joe? >> no doubt about it. i have been talking for the last three weeks about my pro-life wife, her friends who are all conservatives, all republicans, who have lectured me about being sufficiently pro-life because i believe in the dreaded exceptions, we're sitting around breakfast tables over the past couple weeks calling each other on the phone saying, what's happened to our party? i mean, this is not about being pro-life. this is about being pro-grizwald. we are not debating what happened with abortion. we're debating what happened in 1965. when my wife, and when my first chief of staff, are saying that the republican party seems like they are moving further and further away from them, we're a
party that's in a lot of trouble. i don't know how mitt romney puts that back together. this is not about finding the middle. as steve can tell you, republicans win when we have candidates that are like ronald reagan who actually believe in what they say. if mitt romney -- i think he's got the worst of both worlds. he's tainted by this republican primary process that's dragged on too long and has been too ugly. he's also tainted from conservatives for flip-flopping on one issue after another. the latest, of course, being obama care. >> we all know sometimes moderate people on the left or right tend to offset that beiy being celhouse in partisanship. they overemphasize. i know all about this. mitt romney criticized the president's iranian policy today. let's listen. >> hope is not a foreign policy.
the only thing respected by thugs and tyrants is our resolve. backed by our power and our readiness to use it. of course, the administration's naive outreach to iran gave them exactly what they wanted most. >> excuse me, steve. this guy has never been in the military. where's he get talking like he's curtis lamay? this i'm a big hawk. i love war. i can't wait to go to war, which is what we're talking about here. where's this coming from? >> i think after a decade of war that it's important for our leaders to have circumspepgs when they talk about war. i think in the case of mitt romney today, i don't think he's plowing fertile ground on the attacks. i do think there are legitimate areas of criticism of the president's foreign policy, but when you come to talking about the use of military force, i
think the criticisms need to be specific, not rhetorical like they were. >> what do you think, joe? i'm not calling him a chicken hawk yet, but who have never been a schoolyard fight and they want to go to war in iran. they always have one war in the on deck circle. they are one war away from being happy. these guys have their lists. what is it? how does he get to be curtis lamay? >> i don't know. i can't speak to that. i can speak to the fact -- >> you have to by november because this guy is running against the hawk. >> i don't know if i'm going to have to speak for him, but it won't shock you that a lot of times you kpexaggerate issues, especially on national security during presidential campaigns. john kennedy in 1960, you remember, he famously talked
about a missile gap that wasn't there. there wasn't space between nixon and kennedy on the missile issues. it's the same thing in 2012. there's really no space between what mitt romney has said he wants president obama to do and president obama is actually doi doing. what mitt romney is depending on right now, relying on, and i think it's a very dangerous thing for him to do given the state of international relations in the the middle east right now in this particular moment with iran. but he's going back to some preconceptions that some americans and conservatives had based on what president obama said in 2008. where he was naive about how you address iran. and in 2009 where he did wait too long to criticize the brutal crackdown in the streets of tehran. but three years later, this president has self-corrected.
i have talked to republicans who were concerned about mitt romney's tack right now because in all actuality, just like the missile gap in 1960, there's not a lot of space between barack obama and mitt romney's position on iran. >> i think you would be a better candidate. i have been saying that for months and i'm dead serious about it. chafs exceptional about what you just said. i really do appreciate working with this guy. he's a smart guy. this guy. have you seen the movie yet, joe? >> i saw it last night. i was joking this morning that we got a bootleg from canal street. it is an incredible movie. and you know, i know smith. and i was actually impressed by smith's character in the middle. woody haroldson, you forget that you're looking at woody haroldson. it's incredible. >> that's exactly my reaction.
the guy playing you has all the nuances of conflict when you're trying to win a presidential campaign and it's you and your candidate. and the rest of the crazies. coming up, the republicans women's problem. this is a party that's facing a gender gap. 55%. 37% against obama's 55%. also rush limbaugh helping out of course. that's ahead. you're watching "hardball"'s coverage of super tuesday, only on msnbc.
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the republican party is conducting a war on women. what's the the objective? to win elections. is it not? that may be a matter of doubt. but theoretically, the purpose of the republican party is to win elections. so what sense would it make for the republican party to conduct a war on women? >> welcome back to "hardball." that's a good question. while rush limbaugh may say there's not a republican war on effect, there's polling evidence suggesting that. they are shifting their support away from the republican party right now. then there's the gender gap overall. our nbc "wall street journal" poll shows obama leads 55% among
women. when suburban women were asked who should control congress? 39% say democrats. michael steel is a political analyst. and joan walsh is an msnbc analyst. let's start on the reaction. it seems we know that most voters are women. we keep forgetting that. obviously, there's more men out there talking all the time. that's just a fact of life. they are out there talking. and women, of course, just quietly vote. and they make -- i don't think they are single issue voters, but they have concerns that men don't have. they are more concerned with health care, social security, medicare. they take care of older parents and worry about themselves.
there's like one guy in the old folks home. he has big ears and he's very funny. but there's a lot of women there. men say with any luck, i won't need social security. but joan, on the issue of these issues like contraception and birth control and abortion rights, they do ring -- here's my suggestion. it's about the question, does this candidate care about people like me? the fundamental political question. >> right. but men are asking this question too because i think the thing that rush limbaugh did is make a lot of us remember that we also have daughters. this just reached such a horrible low in terms of attacking a young woman that most people just went, yuck. i think the real problem for the republican party at the presidential level is that three out of tleez four guys, god bless ron paul, he kind of said the right thing, three out of these four guys did not know what to say and did not respond really with their hearts. they are so used to looking for
some kind of advantage either over one another or over president obama. mitt romney is looking at the polls saying, please somebody help me. tell me what to say. it created a character gap. now there's a character gap where these guys cannot say what has to be in their hearts and cannot even search their souls and say, wow, how did we get here. they just have to say we're on stage and going to double down on this crazy policy. it's really, really going to hurt them. >> for a long time, i have been looking for the leaders in the republican party. i used to call it the white boys club that meets somewhere. i found out who the leader of your party is, by the way. it's either donald trump or rush limbaugh. which one? these are guys that they met in las vegas. he treats them like he's boss tweed. the big city boss. now they are treating rush limbaugh like he's the holy of
the holiest. are they your true leaders? >> not in the sense that they are political leaders within the party. they have not been elected to office. they hold no rank or constituency per se. but in terms of messaging and connecting with a lot of republicans of all stripes around the country, these guys are personalities. they do have a resonance there. but the most important question and the broader question for the presidential candidate is at some point, you assert yourself as a defak to leader. if you want to be the nominee, you become the head of the gop. you take over the operations of the rnc. you have your hands on all the mechanisms of power and control. but it's that spirit, that sense of who you are in your leadership that defines you. and i think this was a definable moment that was lost. it wasn't just missed, it was lost by the republican
candidates because i thought they all faced a sister soldier opportunity. especially for mitt romney to make it clear that this kind of hyperbole and rhetoric has no place. not just in politics, but in our society when we're denigrating someone for expressing their points of view. we have seen the same thing from the left in the bush years. but this kind of cut in a different way for a lot of voters, male or female, republican and democrat alike. i think it was a missed moment. >> joan, you and i have become such good friends over the years. i think people like to start a battle of the genders. men care about viagra and women care about birth control. we like to make love. it's a coming together. it's a nice thing. men care about birth control as much as women do. being pregnant is significant to both of you.
how did that start? i mean that seems so weird. >> that's what's at the heart of the battle over health care reform. here's a place where michael, you, and i may disagree. but what president obama said is, hey, gals, you have been shouldering this all by yourselves. we have this thing called health insurance and we pay for a lot of stuff. we're sighing you're the only ones in our society who can have ba babies and god bless you, we're going to help you with all the costs that go along with it. you're keeping our whole species alive and we love you for it. we're going to equal liez this thing right here, right now. he did that and these guys went crazy. they went crazy. i don't get what that was about. >> i think we're all in this together. it's not a female issue. it's a human issue. >> this is the problem i have with the description laid out there. what's the problem?
you have effectively ab solved the male of any responsibility in the relationship with this woman, whether it's a sexual nature or beyond that. and i think that that's something that is fundamental to this argument, this discussion. it's not just about giving women access to contraception. it's about the responsible behavior that goes with that access. let me finish my point. it's nice for barack obama to tell women, i got your back. here have a pill. but it's also -- >> that's not what he's saying. >> that's what you just described. let me finish my point. >> let michael finish because i think he's wrong. >> they have a responsibility here that's not just about viagra. it's about when you come together in that fashion, there's a responsibility that kicks in that you just don't want to be ab solved because the woman has a pill. >> that's not what joan said.
she said it's just a general concern about child baring that we all share together. >> i agree with that. but i'm saying it's also this other piece that doesn't get talked about in terms of the responsibility of fathers, or potential fathers, in this relationship. >> that's between two people. >> it seems to have inserted itself by offering up the pill. >> let me tell you the bad news for republicans. they will have to vote. the men are going to have to vote 65% republican this time to make up for the trouble they have caused with women. >> the white men are going to have to vote 85%. >> thank you michael steele. thank you joan walsh. we're all in this together. up next, barbara bush is not so positive review of the republican campaign. you're watching "hardball"'s coverage of tuesday, only on msnbc. [ male announcer ] is zero worth nothing?
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back to "hardball." now to the sideshow. the ingame. chances are we'll wake up tomorrow witnessed the beginning of the end of this process. even though this super tuesday might not mark the end of the brutal ads and nasty back and forth between candidates, it could be a matter of time for republicans to settle on mitt romney. here's stephen colbert on the latest. >> it looks like it's going to be mitt romney's night. he has strong leads in massachusetts, vermont, virginia, and idaho. no surprise, it's the potato state. and mitt is nothing if not pale and starchy. it's purely mathematical. i and fellow conservatives will eventually yield to the inevitability of mitt romney. let's put the countdown to loving mitt clock up. how long do i got?
oh god. 23 hours, 58 minutes. i can't breathe. it's bad luck for the bride to see the man you agreed to marry before you want to. >> sounds like they are giving it a bad name. no one is denying the republican candidates have been dragged through the mud by opponents in the heat of the race. but for rick santorum, there's glory in this struggle. a real david and goliath fight. here he is in an interview with abc news. >> we're winning. whether we end up with the most votes, we're winning. i'm being outspent here. i feel like that's not even suitable for the amount of pounding that that super pac. it's negative ad after negative ad, and yet here we are. hanging in this race. >> david is still getting good pr for beating goliath, but
david has to win for it to work. and lastly, former first lady barbara bush was asked to comment on the current presidential race at a conference at smu yesterday. the former first lady has seen enough to offer up her review of the crew on the republican side. let's watch. >> it's been, i think, the worst campaign i have seen ever seen in my life. i hate the fact that people think compromise is a dirty word. i think the rest of the world is looking at us and thinking, what are you doing? why aren't you getting along? why aren't you working together? i'm optimistic, but i would like this campaign to be over. >> she doesn't exempt any of the candidates in that attack. even romney, who she recently did robo calls for. mitt romney would repeal the health care reform if he got elected. one problem, he's repeatedly supported health care reform at the national level in the past.
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i need an emphatic yes from you that you will repeal obama care. >> why would i not? all right. >> we were asked is what you have done in massachusetts something you would have the entire government do? i said no from the very beginning. no. this is designed for our state and our circumstances. >> that's what he said yesterday. welcome back to "hardball." that was mitt romney yesterday saying he would not use the massachusetts plan he created for the nation. there's a problem. he said he would in the past. let's watch him do it. >> how do you ensure the 45 or 50 million americans who are not on the books? >> that's what we did in massachusetts. we put together an exchange and the president's copying that idea. i'm glad to hear that. >> we have a model that worked. one state in america, my state,
was able to put in place a plan that got everybody health insurance. and therefore, the right way to proceed is to reform health care. that we can do as we did it in massachusetts. >> we need health care reform. and you know, we took that on in massachusetts. we decided we wanted to get everybody ensured. we have done that. i understand the president considers his plan in some respects following the model of massachusetts. let's learn from our experience. >> he's been hiding that. three pictures in a row of him saying i'm definitely going to take romney care and make it obama care. it's exactly his position on health care and will it fly with the republican ranks? is this going to be the signature issue of this guy's problem in the coming campaign. alex wagner and howard fineman join us. alex, you and i were talking before we went on. this is staggering research. but it's not that hard to find.
harry smith on the morning show, the other big broadcast. these are big network interviews in which well-known anchor people. >> a little show called "meet the press." this is not digging into some bedrock mountain of opposition research. this is abc, cbs, and nbc. it's surprising that it's taken so long for anybody to bring this us. for all of us on the sidelines, we wonder why anybody hasn't gone harder on his record on health care. to some degree, it's a mixed bag. rick santorum supported government involvement in health insurance when running for senate. newt gingrich came out for the individual mandate. it's treacherous waters for them. that explains it a little bit. rick santorum has been so distracted about satan attacking america that he's kept his eyes off the prize. >> if romney ends up being the
nominee, all you have to do is cut the tape and show it back and forth until people are dizzy trying to figure out who this guy is. >> that's right. i think at his press conference today, which the president called in the midst of discussion of super tuesday, you could hear the campaign music in the background. i think he was without naming him going after romney time and time again. he said he the president is not the kind of guy to let the foreclosure situation hit bottom using mitt romney's phraseology. they are going to go after mitt romney time and time again on the health care issue. and alex is right. some of the republicans had had tough time getting at him because their own complications with the issue. the president won't have that. it will be emblem attic of the attack they are already mounting, which is an expansion of what republicans have been doing, which is mitt romney's word can't be trusted. >> here's something everybody is watching. you watch shows like this and
you should walk away with something. jonathan summed this up. "romney is now on the verge of escaping with the party nomination having embraced a program his party considers inimical to freedom itself and lie lied about having done so without any major opponents pointing this out. it's pretty incredible." . not only did he do that, but he basically is saying i didn't do it. >> again and again. >> i didn't say go national. >> there are op eds in "usa today" talking about this plan and the fact that it should go national. look. the race isn't over. right, chris? rick santorum has been launching more barbs in his direction on this. the one thing that's a guarantee
is president obama is going to wrap his arms around mitt romney and romney care over and over and over again. death by a thousand hugs. >> thank you, mitt. howard, does he attack him or thank him? this is the the craziest election ever. you gave me the dream of transformation. thank you, mitt. >> at the press conference today shs the president was asked about a nasty crack that mitt romney made about him. he was asked what would you like to say to mitt romney tonight on super tud. the president said, good luck. >> i know. was that ironic? i mean i want to run against you. >> i sort of took it that way. let's step into the ring. that was a campaign press conference today. this issue -- i do think some of the republican cam candidates did try to attack mitt romney on this issue, but they were too busy trying to answer the carpet bombing level of attacks that mitt romney was aiming at them.
that kind of numerical superiority that mitt romney has had against the candidates in the republican race, he's not going to have in the general election. barack obama will have superio superiority. it's going to change the nature of things. >> he has destroyed one opponent after another. then he goes into michigan and does the same thing. half the job on santorum. he's going to do the other half tonight in tennessee, oklahoma, and ohio probably while ignoring newt in georgia giving him his dignity to walk away with. but to walk away with. it's now going to be directed at him. >> it's going to be sparta versus sparta, chris. >> did you root for sparta?
>> i'm a theen yan guy all the way. >> it's good to bring that up when talking about 2012. >> you were with the jocks. >> thank you. up next, president obama held his first conference of the year. to remind everyone he's the commander in chief. this is "hardball," only on msnbc. rience dual-action power, with listerine® whitening plus restoring rinse. it's the only listerine® that gets teeth two shades whiter and makes tooth enamel two times stronger. get dual-action listerine® whitening rinse. building whiter, stronger teeth. that is better than today. since 1894, ameriprise financial has been working hard for their clients' futures. never taking a bailout. helping generations achieve dreams. buy homes. put their kids through college. retire how they want to. ameriprise. the strength of america's largest financial planning company.
president obama is crushing his republican six to one right now. three quarters of latinos approve of the job president obama is doing. none of the republicans running for president polled higher than 14%. one in seven in a head to head matchup with the president. wow. we'll be right back. [ kyle ] my bad.
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republicans regarding iran. let's watch the president. >> when i see the casualness with which some of these folks talk about war, i'm reminded of the costs involved in war. i'm reminded of the decision that i have to make in terms of sending our young men and women into battle. this is not a game. there's nothing casual about it. >> the optics were clear today for those who watched. president obama is commander in chief explaining the situation with iran and making an appeal to women voters while republicans were fighting for votes in super tuesday. chris joins us. this kind of political rhetoric in a wartime situation where you have mitch mcconnell talking about a declaration of war. the palestinian people are the bad guys. i have never seen a presidential
candidate talk like that. talking about nothing about american interests. it's all about israel. it's all big time pan dor. i have never seen it done so indecently as perform. your thoughts on the iranian issue, pure politics. >> sure. well, look, you know, president obama said today that he has put in place crippling sanctions on iran and he has been enforcing them, i would tell you this chris, the iran sanctions act was put into place in the late 1990s but presidents clinton and bush did very little to enforce thoseiran sanctions and president obama done quite a bit. when mitt romney talks on the campaign trail about iran, he effectively says, you know, we don't have iran sanctions in place aimed be the one to put them in and enforce. they he is wrong about that president obama has done and that is the point president obama is making today. >> thank you for telling me that erin, it is very smart. the sanctions regime has been real under this president. but chris cillizza, one thing
that offends me this war talk. i know they have thing in my head about chicken hawks, people that have never been in a school yard fight talking about starting a war with such calmness, that was the president's term over and over again, the casual way they talk about war, these guys who run against them. >> well, look, you know, chris, i think this was -- for lack of a better phrase, i hate to fall back on cliche, but this was kind of a adult in the room moment for president obama which is to say, you can all talk a big game, accident say that but in a way, look, i have been a candidate, too, myself but i will tell you when you are in the oval office, when you are making decisions not just to say we should go in militarily here or here or here, various hot spots, you make those decision, it means american lives at risk, it is a different burned, it is a different decision. he was very much owning that i would say, chris, if mitt romney wants to be the republican nominee, i would bet that you barack obama works to make mitt romney's relative lack of for rip policy ex-kbreerps,
remember, this is a guy who has been a governor and business executive in the past, an issue in the campaign. this is a time of significant world conflict all across the world, the middle east and elsewhere. and barack obama, i think, will say here's what i have done, i have got more experience and we can't take a risk, fascinating, because that was the exact argument that john mccain tried to make against barack obama then candidate obama in 2008. >> switch direction to the women's issue, the most important issue in the presidential campaign because most voters women. let's look what the president said today about that issue. >> i believe that democrats have a better story to tell to women about how we are gonna solidify the middle class and grow this economy, make sure everybody got -- has a fair shot, everybody is doing their fair share. >> erin, he is just saying choice, abortion rights, not saying contraceptives that is a current issue, he is talking across-the-board, health,
education, issues women have particularly shown an interest in, a concern with. >> yeah well, let me point something else out to you, chris, he talked about malia and sash sharks his daughters today, talking about women and the women's issue because of the sandra fluke issue with the -- and the controversy with rush limbaugh. here is some trivia, there has been no u.s. president since dwight d eisenhower in the 1950s who have not had a daughter. in other words, every president has had a daughter since the '50s. now, in this election, president obama has two daughters and mitt romney has five sons. when he was talking about malia and sash sharks he can talk about women's issue in a very personal context. mitt romney cannot do that the other thing i would point out about that he said being married to michelle, i know she is a very strong woman, you know, and i don't have to tell her what's important to her, she will tell me. when mitt romney talks about his wife, ann romney, he talks about how much he loves her, how she is the most important thing in his life s that important? absolutely. but what barack obama was saying
in that press conference is gonna go a longer way with women voters. well said, i love bring the stuff to the game. he knows as much about young women today he's knows about war today. thank you, aaron mcpike from clear channel. chris sill liz za, thanks, real clear politics. we return, let me finish with why i think president obama is doing the smart thing with regard to iran now. you are watching "hardball," only on msnbc. today.
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with this. i think president obama's handleding this iranian situation as well as any president can. while his rivals are behaving outhonor. let's keep in mind, even in a heated election year an american president has to wear three hats in the middle east. one and always number one, he must attend to america's interests. two, look out for our allies, including israel. three, per perform had the role we have played since the modern state of israel was declared that of middle east peacemaker. without the u.s. pushing for peace, hard to see it ever having much chance, breaks through, camp dave vity sflid 197 brought a peace between israel and egypt and more recently, peace between israel and jordan and difficult but essential push for peace between israeli and the israelis. would you think listening to the republican candidates for president that the only policy that matters right now is the bombing of iran and how fast to do it. you hear nothing about them -- from them about protecting america's interests, nothing about role as peacemaker, nothing. in fact, romney now speaks to the palestinians as if they, themselves are our enemy.
america's enemy. when did that become u.s. policy? i thought both parties, republican and democrat, believed in the right of the two people, jewish and palestinian, to their own countries. it was president george w. bush who enun yated that policy. the current crop of candidates makes bush seem like woodrow wilson. president obama said today in his press conference he those worry about the consequences of what he says and does, his folks rivals steam think they can say anything and now mitch mcconnell, who swore to destroy the obama presidency from infalling in racial day on, talks of having the senate pass a declaration of war on iran, just in case. well, that would be helpful, isn't it? the more talk there is, the more rainians circle their wangs around the leader, the more nationalistic segments are general ginned enup over there the more people hoard as an anticipation of a cutoff of traffic in the strait of who are muchlz the president acts as president. romney, whose family's military ex-peer jen a giant goose egg, big fat zero, talks like bombs