Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
Welcome to another edition special report on line the first of 2013.
Welcome aboard Bret -- if you haven't been here before.
This is a different thing than show little bit more relaxed.
You can ask questions make comments.
We react to them.
If you don't see your question or comment in the middle section don't.
Freak out about it producers are trying to put as many in as possible as fast as they can.
And hopefully we'll get it.
In there as fast as we can also you can vote on polls.
Underneath here throughout the program.
And right now will present Obama unilaterally raise the debt ceiling and do you favor gay marriages at the national cathedral -- the questions.
The latter no 88%.
For the gay marriages at the national cathedral which are already.
Happening and yes the president will unilaterally raise the debt ceiling 61%.
To thirty -- it.
Our panel -- facing a writer for the weekly standard Charles -- opinion writer for the Washington Post and of course syndicated columnist Charles Kraft.
Decision in Indiana says SR -- my favorite program.
-- -- -- -- -- Factors in there as well.
Edwards says my first time experiencing -- are on line hello everyone hello.
A vet in Florida and Ghazi -- -- bad guys.
That we're gonna start where.
Where we left off.
You don't think -- that Jack -- has any issues.
If you know -- sessions is not a guy Jeff Sessions who puts out these kind of grenades.
A lot of times.
-- -- A little bit but you know look he's been on sessions is done on a very tough campaign lately about spending I get that.
And he wants to have a hearing about spending you can be sure.
He's entitled to that.
And Jack Lew -- having been chief of staff involved with the budget involvement budget talks is an appropriate target for a tough hearing.
So I think that's what the remark is really all that's what sessions this isn't going but I don't think he has the capability.
Sessions two to stop this thing in its tracks and I don't think it's the fight the Republicans.
Wanna take on they're they're they're gonna choose between brown and and -- And so forth and so yeah.
The thing is that Charles and in all of these things.
All of these hearings.
If it's not just getting the votes in counting -- heads it's also about.
Policy it's also about really.
Long conversations about president Obama's policy.
This exactly right look if you look at the three nominees.
Unlike the cabinet and the advisors Obama had in the first year.
Which world independently.
Sort of authoritative Hillary Clinton -- Volcker.
Was an advisory you had to.
Who has distinguished secretary of defense these world figures in their own right if you look now at an eagle and -- And brand and these are not figures in -- right -- -- -- in the government for twenty is extremely competent but he's not.
So the major spokesman for any party or idea.
The same with the bread and he's a lifer in the CIA very.
Close with -- Obama and the same with -- who left the senate without leaving.
Much of a Trace so what you have -- three people who are not going to be sort of team of rivals that are going to be people who wanted to carry out.
What Obama wants to do and the importance of nominations.
He's not -- -- individual attributes it's what choosing them says about where Obama wants to go.
And the way I see it would Lou he says I wanna go expanding some guy who knows I was spending and -- protect it.
-- -- and he's saying he's a guy he's signaling that he wants to go to the high tech.
Drone dominated the military was special forces and not the -- attacks of the bush years.
And -- is a guy we've carried out and -- those things are guys much softer.
Our national security and on intervention abroad and I was.
Even in the first determine I'm gonna have -- so that's what I think the three hearings are going to be about where Obama wants to head.
And the message he's sending by choosing each of these three who will carry out policy that is very centralized.
In the White House and essentially with him.
By the way this -- the second special border line.
So that was an old thing in the teleprompter.
So I basically did a Ron Burgundy and I just read.
I think what was in the teleprompter you're doing another one now and I'm just I just said what was in there.
Not knowing exactly what was in the spirit and you know -- had done to us said a word about it -- -- -- usually just let me but I was here last Wednesday so I wasn't sure.
But there wasn't a question mark at the end so congress can hardly remember last week it can pick up on some -- -- -- I think.
It's hard enough studies -- You know this point Charles making -- a -- interest -- -- about the ideological coloration of these nominees and as I look at Jack -- there's a real contrast with Tim Geithner.
He has Geithner was not a political person actually his mentor originally was Henry Kissinger Republican -- -- Wall Street kind apparatchiks guy.
From the Federal Reserve in new York and had been put in that job because he had that kind of experience -- mistrusted by Wall Street.
Lose a completely different kind of figure he's a Washington person he's a democratic partisan.
And -- things I'm on the interest to do it to be doing some reporting on tomorrow is how Wall Street views Jack -- as opposed to how they'd -- broadly I think light Geithner.
Geithner was not well liked by the Democratic Party base because he was so thought to be too easy on the banks in terms of regulation and so forth and I think Lou.
Might be a different kind of secretary in that respect.
-- in Florida says stay classy San Diego thank you Casey.
And you don't.
OK there's the Ron Burgundy.
You were talking Brennan.
Are there Democrats.
Who are concerned about -- mean are there yet.
Are there Democrats who are so concerned about for an.
-- may not vote in my -- I would say going and -- a limb here since I hedged at the end of our segment by the way that was.
At least you came with.
No nobody's -- -- may be and like -- -- -- -- -- You said one word.
I -- said perhaps are connected to let's say that I partially answered the great yeah.
Anyway I would say -- -- -- -- -- that.
I would expect Ron Wyden to oppose.
Friends nomination given his concerns about drone warfare and whatnot would seem to me being consistent.
With him what with with the arguments that he's made there to to be supportive of president.
I think the other thing that that will factor in to these hearings in this process that we won't hear a lot about because -- less public.
Is the amount personal animosity that senators have towards John Brennan and I think senators on both sides the Al Brennan is regarded as someone who.
Participant in the oversight process.
Having worked at the White House that was well not the sun goes through diplomatic well -- delivery.
He's he's viewed as very arrogant.
He has as I said he has been seen as a probably the source of many of the leaks national security coming out of the White House that's going to be incredibly difficult to prove although expected -- it.
Many pointed questions about the leaks and what he knows about them.
He's seen as someone who has sort drawn and very tight circle around the White House and the president.
And made sure that the intelligence that's made public.
His intelligence that is consistent with the case that Barack Obama has made a political case the Barack Obama has made.
In defense of his national security priorities so we've heard a lot of -- Vice President Cheney did.
Much the same thing and bush mr.
Well right no I -- look I think the kid is no question -- made a strong case on behalf of all of the priorities that the Bush Administration did.
I don't think it's fair to say in fact I would say it's would be unfair to say that there were a lot of leaks that came out of Cheney's office that's for sure this is in his office was.
For the most part the media.
I think that's not the case quit with Brent and I think you're gonna get a lot of screwed it up and then mentality as you suggested.
The you know there are a lot of questions about Ben -- about the specifics of Ben -- net have never -- answered.
Republicans want to see answer and it's not just Lindsey Graham I mean Lindsey Graham has been public about it so that he could potentially put a hold on the nomination or or.
-- hold it up in any case until he gets his question answered.
He's not alone on that there -- a lot of people including people on the intelligence committee and elsewhere who want it's -- to specific questions they have not gotten from the White House.
It's just overall really interest in how the president.
Attitude and -- is different.
From four years ago and and how that's reflected in these nominations he's clearly willing to take on fights right.
Didn't take on Jeff Sessions with Jack Lew and all the other people that he knows darn well don't like Jack -- for this you know the reason.
He's gonna take on people by -- -- knowing full well what he's getting.
And you know he's he's risky with -- and and I think he's.
Concluded from the results of this election like I'm fully authorized.
And I'm not -- I think he himself believes the narrative that is.
The president failed or had trouble in his first term when he tried to compromise.
And I think the of these appointments some -- and reflect.
Let's go on that yet isn't there an element to that that he believes that he can take.
His case and his cult of personality.
To do you not say I don't person I don't know how he is he is.
Two on the road.
Make the sale.
That he needs these people.
In his cabinet and put the pressure on Republicans.
On a number of different fronts and then.
Win on all of these little battles in addition to the wins he's had and then further weak in the republic -- ready to the point where.
It's like they are getting jabbed and jabbed jabbed in -- boxing ring and suddenly.
You know when it comes to the debt ceiling.
They don't have as much.
-- -- -- By the way except for Steve we don't -- -- oblige but yeah.
How by the -- shocks me clear that -- in the -- GM and Orlando Steve's new song called me maybe.
Israel as it CPI which has achieved.
I don't know any of less and -- Look that -- I think you're absolutely right Obama I think he's watched the Lincoln too often.
Because what he's saying there's a great -- of Lincoln races.
The president of you the United States close in immense power.
When you want to give the thirteenth amendment passed and orders his underlings to get it done by hook or by crook.
I think Obama feels I'm close an immense power.
And you know I think he understands this is not exactly the emancipation.
Proclamation or the thirteenth amendment.
But he wants to show in -- second term.
That he will be in charge.
And he was on call he made the Republicans.
Cave on tax rates which he knew would be -- fracturing event.
In the Republican caucus in the house and he succeeded he's -- -- that will not negotiate on the debt ceiling.
And I think I believe them I think he's quite willing to watch the Republicans.
Get in the -- if they go ahead and you know and don't pass it.
And I think he's showing the -- and his appointees these -- in your face -- point.
I think he feels bad that he had to cave and Susan Rice but the only reason he did.
He's not because.
You know she was going to be attacked her because she was going to be the only way that he could.
Failed to escape the bad guys -- scandal.
If he had -- out there for secretary of state.
They're humans would have been entirely about the talking points the press which has been ignoring this -- had to look at all this and he would have had a scandal.
On the front page all over again.
That's why he did -- -- because of any other reason.
And now he's saying I'm -- -- -- on anybody paid it was provoked huge amount of reaction.
And there's no particular reason why -- that -- know he's going to be making the policy anyway.
I think as a way of saying as you -- president.
I'll do what I want and I will be able to rally the people behind me if I have to.
And that's how he's gonna pursue -- city.
He makes a good point though to your point -- she says you know where was major compromise and -- exactly.
No that's the -- Susan says where was the major compromise well if you're asking me Maryland error says -- on that account of that.
I believe what I said was Obama believes he come -- -- okay.
Mean this is a sort of a dominant theme in progressive circles that he was too eager to pursue deals for the Republicans.
I'm not gonna take issue with your viewers but I think there's points made on both sides that there but -- what matters.
For what we're talking about right now he's he.
Appears to believe that narrative himself.
-- and I might -- you know he also did just win the election.
He has been vindicated politically and furthermore presents are generally thought to be entitled to of the cabinet centers that want -- -- terribly corrupt and incompetent.
And so you have to that extent it's not it so in your face as it is just you know he's exercising.
Abroad but think think about the first term when he came in and he passed stimulus without any Republican support then he went and passed.
Health care which -- did.
Still would argue is you know an ineffective government takeover of 20% of the economy.
Without any Republican support he's reconcile it and using reconciliation he said he was gonna -- -- incorporate Republican ideas and both he did neither.
Then he loses an election.
Which is -- a referendum on the size and scope of government one would have expected him to trim his sales at that point he didn't he went further laughed he gave a defiant state of the union speech in which he said.
We need more investment more investment more investment he never did anything to compromise on any -- may I respond for a I think.
I would just try to look at what you just said from the point of view of -- of them -- OK you said he didn't incorporate a single Republican idea.
What -- progressive Democrat would say was well he put the Alternative Minimum Tax fix into the stimulus which is like seventy billion dollars.
-- doesn't really stimulus but they counted against the total.
And he did it because Chuck Grassley a Republican insisted OK that's -- -- -- if congress wanted him to do that as well.
Thought it was Chuck Grassley who insisted that was his price for.
For the stimulus okay that's so that's one instance the other thing that.
Not without any reason whatsoever is that obamacare itself was.
The embodiment of Republican ideas in terms of you know the old Heritage Foundation -- -- an individual mandate and so forth so what I'm trying to tell you Steve that.
You you know you have to understand how this looks sure they are -- they're not okay that's been but I mean I mean let's be let's be honest about it that.
If you even -- -- concede your point about Chuck Grassley that's one.
But less than 110 of the total amount of the stimulus -- it also wanted to much et Al -- they wanted to trillion dollars and they cut it down to whatever was having them.
48 to get it to get -- congress unless it.
Let's look big picture -- Indy says two term presidents look to their legacy.
Given his refusal to cut or to do entitlement reform his want to increase taxes.
What do you see is the legacy that President Obama wants to leave.
I think that's a good question.
I think Jack blue and his addition to the cabinet if he gets through one it's likely I think you're right that.
Most presidents do get there their picks and and deference is given to presidents when they make their choices.
Does Jack who provide.
That this president.
Still has in him.
The ability to do something big.
Turning the country around with entitlements or something else.
From the first two months of his presidency I believed that Obama is social Democrat he sees Europe is a more just.
And Europe has high levels of entitlements and high levels of taxation.
Way higher than we do and his legacy is too close to broaden.
To -- wide and too deep in the entitlement state which he's already done.
With obamacare which will change America.
In a fundamental way and secondly his role now is to provide the taxes on the money.
For this expanded state he's not going to cut spending that's not why he was elected.
He's promised right after the morning actually the more than a day before the debt ceiling the -- the fiscal cliff negotiations were concluded.
He said I'm not gonna cut spending and and I haven't yet.
Ended my taxing -- to be.
I -- greats and I would do loop holes there's a guy who wants to raise the historical level of taxation America.
Way above the post war enormous -- by the 18% of GDP.
And is already raised the historic rate of spending.
Which is about 20% of GDP it's already almost 15.
And that's his legacy here and care about spending and all be taken care of after he retires after just I was its -- state.
And if Republicans are in office after him.
It's Republicans even have to do all the pain all the cutting and other taxing on the middle class which he hasn't had done because that's where the money's.
So all of your early hope that there could possibly be light at the end of the tunnel that this administration that this president could.
See or believe what he had said that that he needs it.
Change entitlements that he needs and he's -- tax reform that he needs to do all these things you don't think that that's that I may have slipped for an afternoon or a weekend it's.
They generally speaking I have always believed.
He's social Democrat he ignored his own.
That nobody saw some hope that after Simpson Bowles you saw some -- glimmer.
But he did nothing I know I know and then there was a grand bargain negotiations in July 2011.
And he kicked it away he kept it moving the goalposts look -- himself.
A guy who twice have the football snatched away from him by Lucy.
Has finally said in the interview he did last week the Wall Street Journal Obama he's not gonna cut spending and Obama set to him.
We don't understand if you say that we don't have a spending problem.
In your living on planet X and you're not interest to -- what I think.
The majority of Americans are worried about his crushing.
Debt that we will be the rule would have a country -- -- interest -- that.
Well I mean I have some -- patents.
Diplomatic -- but there's a lot of what to respond to in their but I mean I guess I would put it this way.
It's it's -- does not follow that because you don't care about spending you do not care about that.
Right because obviously one way mathematically to get rid of debt is to tax okay -- he's.
He's into that -- doesn't -- doesn't care about that.
I would also say I understand the football may have been yanked in your view but the president did say just a couple of days ago after the fiscal -- deal with -- We've got to deal with health care and we've got to deal with Medicare he did say that.
I sort of see it a little bit differently I see I see him.
From his point of view what is the now reelected.
No lose situation.
Okay he's got two ways he can have a legacy one is he can cut some grand bargain.
Right -- it does deal with entitlements but does a lot more on taxation and the Republicans cut a deal and you know.
All of -- centrist editorial pages stand up and applaud and he goes off in history as the guy who did that he wins the other way he wins is that doesn't happen.
And he builds a progressive.
-- -- he really makes the federal government in progress the progressive image and all the progressives love him.
And he doesn't have to run for reelection anyway.
I mean he is.
Really politically playing with the house money which is what makes him so.
Powerful so as a rival for the Republicans which you think he really wants to do in his heart of hearts number one and number two number two but.
I also think that if he got.
-- a favorable enough dispensation on number one he would go for that.
There there will be no grand march period I think that the well it's so.
Poison on both sides right now there's no chance that they'll be.
A grand bargain because he doesn't have a negotiating partner I think because he's pulled the football -- to t.'s Charles county.
A couple different times you heard John Boehner say I'm not negotiating with this guy -- -- these back -- anymore we're gonna have this out front.
And even if you by the distinction in mankind debt and spending which I think it's a legitimate one what evidence is there that -- at all concerned about debt.
There isn't any evidence he's giving lip service a couple of times to.
Identifying the problem which is saying nothing everybody in the entire world knows that.
Health care spending particularly Medicare -- the driver of our -- To acknowledge that fact doesn't.
Then -- suggest he's serious about solving that problem it's merely restating the problem as it is he's never done anything he's never put up any serious proposal.
If any kind of formal way.
To address the drivers of our our debt and I think until he does you can't.
Assume that the guys serious about that I guess that was the point my question is is a serious guy knows numbers like Jacqueline.
How -- look at those numbers and not say.
And add that numbers differently.
-- you know what this -- that this is where the defense budget comes -- Because I hate I think it's a big project for the second term is is significant defense cuts.
And that is -- another way in which he is changing.
The Democratic Party from the Bill Clinton years I mean there's a number of pieces that.
Are are all part of that and I think now you're gonna see at least an attempt in this in this -- to.
To really you know put the defense budget on on more -- but it -- I think to solve the long term problem you could eliminate the Defense Department and eliminate defense spending.
And it does nothing to solve our long term -- that the long term trajectory.
I don't know that would it would be a -- and then it would return back entitlement spending is gonna noise.
Then you don't need a billion dollars sure it is but -- that's -- -- -- okay it would do we have a temporary.
Dip and then we were to return to this debt trajectory because we haven't addressed entitlement.
-- -- I do think that he paid Czechs -- he's a guy who can defend the budget.
Lewis -- value neutral you know good government -- from the outside who wants a balanced the budget to committed Democrat he's like -- bombings in the same camp.
And he's a guy that you'd want on your side but what you're saying about the defense spending I think he's exactly right.
But it makes the point -- -- trying to make that Obama sees Europe as a model what did you do after the Second World War.
It got it all defense spending it's completely useless it couldn't even airlift.
-- because he couldn't sustain the Libya operation for a week without us came -- a damn thing but he deliberately did that.
Thinking it had the American umbrella behind it protected.
Delivery -- so you could have the entitlement state is doing you are open about it that was the British Labour Party.
The French socialist in the era of the Italian socialist social Democrats and coming -- this was this was understood.
And that's the model that you do you reduce the only problem.
They had America.
As the umbrella to defend them we -- nobody behind.
The fact and that every argument against every year I covered the NATO.
Defense meaning every year America would send a letter to -- saying -- please.
Beef up your paper -- because we're tired of being the only.
Military that provides.
Or this and why it's -- there's -- appointment and -- -- -- -- noticeably through as an original treaty -- I mean one of the reasons of course Charles getting a little far field that Europe was able to build up.
The welfare states that forward to is that we were handling security for them they did it under.
Our umbrella and -- we were -- market for their goods that.
So this is a bigger question I mean yes is the Pentagon budget.
Love it yes could it be cut Republicans and Democrats I think you can find agree that there are cuts to be made in the defense but it.
The difference between.
Cutting a bloated budget and -- a military budget.
That's a fine line -- that I think is really the question that going forward may be what you're tapping into.
Yeah and I think people are generally genuinely concerned with national security military capability -- this country ought to be.
Glad actually -- -- Obama made some of the suggestions he made to cut the military health care programs which are bloated.
Which are the talk about entitlements.
Bomb but which are defend it tooth and nail frankly by a lot of viewers out there -- were military veterans and feel entitled to it and defended by Republicans.
On those committees.
Because they feel like I used to be in the military rush get free health care for my whole life okay.
And that is tens of billions of dollars in the out years that can't be spent on.
Actual -- goes on to the defense budget.
And you know that was something I thought the president appropriately targeted.
On you know be interesting to see it'll be very -- -- to see when it does come down -- the short strokes -- what's gonna get caught cut of that defense budget.
How much of its -- that's going to be preserve our National Guard units we don't really.
Or been in and protected congressional districts all the kinda lets you know social welfare stuff that gets done under the rubric of the defense but.
Honestly I think these are huge discussions that that are just starting I think that -- -- Buddy you get the emails yeah -- that blue and and hagel that those two picks are.
I think really touch on on cutting via the Pentagon.
And the signal that this administration's.
And that beyond the personal history of politics.
Is really what it says about Obama what's his state where he wants to go.
And in the view I and others have is this second -- -- the unleashed Obama.
The one who -- elusive panel did Dmitry president of Russia.
What is -- I have as my last election after this election they'll be flexible.
Is is the real Obama now that he doesn't have to answer to the electorate I think we're gonna see on and I think these.
Nominations are pretty broad hint and message.
To -- Obama wants to go.
Our -- and done this.
-- Jay curry talked about this -- The controversy.
Here in Washington.
Complete knee surgery.
And what -- Carney said.
I wouldn't have put a man.
So that that for the White House I would have taken him out.
As pretty controversial statement from the white house Press Secretary today.
We were at that game Charles it was tough to watch.
Who has some comments I think there's.
Sandy Jenkins described.
RG three after the re injuring.
Of the leg near the end of the first half.
As a pirate walking around on a peg leg I mean you even have to be a doctor -- know -- he was really hurting.
That he couldn't he was heard in the last.
You know few minutes of the game he might have escaped.
Serious injury it all happened I think in five minutes to go.
But the fact is you contrast this with the Washington Nationals who kept their big star young star Strasburg out of the the playoffs and they lost some of the playoffs.
You know he wasn't hurt -- because honest.
Sort of by the statistics he should have been rested until.
Two years after the surgery had -- and they took a lot of hits on that.
The adults have to say to the kids and Strasburg one -- the play.
The way RG three I think -- a lot of courage and -- said I'm going out there I -- this you have to be inability I'd say that he can you can't play.
And it's not even your decision and I know that's tough it's all hindsight it.
But the tragedy is that it wasn't said and this good hurt his career let alone next year.
-- comes back to baseball for.
-- whether it is and it's the job well I feel very sorry about -- very strongly about this that was not a defeat for the Redskins that was sort of the tragedy of almost Shakespearean proportions that I -- that.
Happened and and we need a constitutional amendment I think conscious.
Congress needs oversight power over the -- like that because clearly the system they have in place now is not capable.
Protect protect life here since the there's fifteen minutes interview was better sell big government out paternal have to dig it out and -- government you'll never eat lunch in this town again.
I was in to my desk and -- it's two minutes past that wants to wrap it up he's getting about a year Steve final word here.
I grew up in Atlanta -- -- and it didn't Packers.
-- maybe I'll have to Wear the Atlanta tied it one day if the falcons can actually beat the Seahawks in Atlanta and home game.
And then making that right here the Packers if the Packers are able to prevail in San Francisco on Saturday night let's Gregory here.
When -- that.
Can -- something.
All right you get away and she's had a guy Mike he's headed home OK and -- -- Falcons.
There could be old falcon falcon and that captured.
-- mess that's -- you know I don't know lead down a little.
We're gonna -- I don't know we allow that.
Did for this online show will work on that bet.
-- -- tubes big time how about that.
Thanks for tuning into the online show will be back here next week Wednesday and of course 6 PM.
Show tomorrow night 6 -- special report to close shaken by the have -- Insurer won't be so good --
Filter by section