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updated 10/16/2012 11:27:57 AM ET 2012-10-16T15:27:57

THE ED SHOW with ED SCHULTZ
October 15, 2012

Guests: Ted Strickland, E.J. Dionne, Mary Jo Kerr, Michelle Goldberg, Howard Fineman

ED SCHULTZ, HOST: Good evening, Americans. Welcome to THE ED SHOW
from New York.

Twenty-two days until the 2012 election, on eve of the second
presidential debate, President Obama supporters are begging him to take off
the gloves and fight for the middle class.

This is THE ED SHOW -- let`s get to work.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY: This morning, I cast my vote early for
Barack Obama.

SCHULTZ (voice-over): The Obama campaign is fired up. The president
is ready to go. And Mitt Romney is ready to keep the lies rolling.

ED GILLESPIE, ROMNEY CAMPAIGN SENIOR ADVISER: Six different studies
have said this is entirely doable.

CHRIS WALLACE, FOX NEWS: Very questionable. Some of them are blogs.

SCHULTZ: Tonight, Richard Wolffe on the expectations for the
president going into the debate. And former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland
on the new lie Mitt Romney is cooking up.

SEN. ROB PORTMAN (R), OHIO: Unemployment is higher today than when
President Obama took office. And, unfortunately, meantime, we created net
zero jobs.

SCHULTZ: Paul Ryan meets the takers in a homeless clinic. The veep
candidate staged a photo op and it was a total bust.

And Mitt Romney`s vision for America is playing out right now in
Freeport, Illinois.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The only motivation is they want more money.

SCHULTZ: Since auto workers are in New York, protesting the
Republican nominee, tonight, my interview with an auto worker.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SCHULTZ: Good to have you with us tonight, folks. Thanks for
watching.

The uproar over President Obama`s debate performance has subsided. We
are back to square one in this election. Tomorrow might be one of the most
important dates on the calendar so far. The average of all national polls
from Real Clear Politics shows the race is dead even once again. President
Obama has maintained his lead in several key swing states like Ohio and
Nevada.

The numbers have stabilized. But all the attention turns to the town
hall-style debate at Hofstra University tomorrow night.

The Obama campaign launched a new ad today to help define the
president`s message in the home stretch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AD NARRATOR: Every president inherits challenges. Few have faced so
many. Four years later, our enemies have been brought to justice. Our
heroes are coming home. Assembly lines are humming again.

There are still challenges to meet, children to educate, a middle
class to rebuild, but the last thing we should do is turn back now.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I`m Barack Obama and I
approve this message.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Part of the president`s strategy in the final weeks is to
emphasize his accomplishments in the first term. Another part is to flat
out motivate his supporters. First lady Michelle Obama tweeted a picture
of her absentee ballot as part of a push by Obama campaign to encourage
early voting. The campaign is also drumming up visibility with some big
name surrogates.

Bruce Springsteen will rally supporters in Ohio and Iowa this week.
The Boss will be joined by former President Bill Clinton at an event in
Parma, Ohio, on Thursday. Celebrities like Scarlett Johansson and Eva
Longoria and also Kerry Washington are featured in a video about women`s
rights under a Romney presidency.

The Obama campaign also rolled out a web ad with Jay-Z encouraging
young people to make sure they cast their votes.

These are important messages for voter outreach, no doubt. It`s one
thing to hear from Hollywood`s supporters speaking up on behalf of the
president. But the most important thing, it`s so important to hear from
the candidate himself. The president`s supporters, they want to see his A
game tomorrow night. They want to see a different guy answering for the
middle class.

President Obama has a shot to close the door on Mitt Romney. It`s a
shot he didn`t take in the last debate and needs to take it this time.
According to NBC`s Kirsten Welker sources close to the Obama campaign say
the president will probably bring up Mitt Romney`s 47 percent comments
during tomorrow`s debate.

The comments from the hidden fundraiser video are still really the
soft underbelly of the Romney campaign. It`s the best attack to show the
American people Mitt Romney is not acceptable as the choice for president
because he says one thing behind closed doors and something else on
numerous occasions other places.

Vice President Joe Biden used the comments to his advantage during the
debate against Paul Ryan last week. A new ad by the super PAC American
Bridge uses Romney`s comments against him. Actress Rosie Perez does not go
easy on the Republican nominee.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: My dad, you probably know, was
the governor of Michigan and was the head of a car company. But he was
born in Mexico. Had he been born of Mexican parents, I`d have a better
shot of winning this. And I say that jokingly but it would be helpful to
be Latino.

ROSIE PEREZ, ACTRESS: The reason why Latinos aren`t voting for you is
because your policies suck. Being Latino wouldn`t win you the election,
but saying jokingly that you wish you were might actually lose it for you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: The president needs to go after Mitt Romney but at the same
time, he cannot look like a pit bull on stage. That`s a tough order. It`s
a fine line to walk.

Tomorrow`s debate will not be the same affair as it was, the debate,
two weeks ago. The podiums, they, of course, are gone. The candidates are
going to have to look comfortable and welcoming to a room full of undecided
voters.

Mitt Romney showed in the last debate that he can make the most of his
rehearsed lines to connect with regular voters.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROMNEY: I have had the occasion over the last couple of years of
meeting people across the country. I was in Dayton, Ohio, and a woman
grabbed my arm and she said, I`ve been out of work since May, can you help
me? And yesterday, it was a rally in Denver, and a woman came up to her
with a baby with her arms, and said, and my husband has had four jobs in
three years, part-time jobs. He`s lost his most recent job and we have now
lost our home. Can you help us?

And the answer is yes. We can help. But it`s going to take a
different path.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: And what about those workers in Freeport, Illinois? That
story coming up later in the broadcast. Does Romney feel the same way
about them?

President Obama won`t win any points for attacking Mitt Romney
personally. He needs to communicate on a different level. The stakes are
high for the president because the road is not going to get any easier
after the debate.

Here`s the landscape. Romney raised $170 million in September before
the first debate. There`s also untold millions of dark money to funnel
into super PAC ad campaigns.

The cash onslaught will hit President Obama hard. He can`t afford to
be playing catch up after another lackluster debate performance. He needs
to get it done tomorrow night.

We also cannot forget the anger and hatred coming from the fringes of
the right wing. The son of Wisconsin senator -- Senate candidate Tommy
Thompson reminded us that birtherism is alive and well at a fundraiser for
his dad.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We had the opportunity to send President Obama
back to Chicago, or Kenya.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: You don`t need to look very far to see the extreme elements
working against the president in this election.

"Slate`s" Dave Weigel reported from Wisconsin today, and found an
anti-Obama activist distributing hundreds of DVDs. The disks contain a
movie called "Dreams For My Real Father," a wild conspiracy accusing
President Obama of having communist parents. The movie was also sent to
swing voters in Ohio, about a million of them.

Our colleagues at "Maddow Blog" were sent this photo from western
Pennsylvania. The billboard says to vote for the Americans Romney and
Ryan.

At an Ohio event, Romney supporter was photographed wearing a t-shirt
saying, "Put the white back in the White House." The Romney campaign
denounced the message.

These extremists will do anything to keep President Obama from
winning. The president was always going to know that it was going to be a
really tough fight in this campaign. He`s been saying it all along.

Tomorrow, he needs to do one basic thing: inspire his supporters.
People who watch these debates want to know that their guy is on the same
page with them. People don`t want to be screaming at their television sets
tomorrow night saying, say this, say this, don`t let him get away with
that, because that`s really how it was in the first debate.

The president needs to ease the memory of two weeks ago and show that
he will fight to the very end for this country and for the middle class.
Every night on this show I say four words -- let`s get to work.

Tomorrow, President Obama is on the clock and he has his work cut out
for him.

Get your cell phones out. We want to know what you think. Tonight`s
question: will President Obama win tomorrow night`s debate?

Text A for yes, text B for no to 622639. You can always go to our
blog at Ed.MSNBC.com, and leave a comment. We encourage you do to that.
We`ll bring you the results later on in the show.

I`m joined tonight by Richard Wolffe, MSNBC political analyst, and
vice president and executive editor of MSNBC.com, which got a brand new
look today. And it looks really, really good.

Richard, great to have you with us tonight.

RICHARD WOLFFE, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Thanks, Ed.

SCHULTZ: Tomorrow night, how big is it for the president? How high
are the stakes? Can he afford to have anywhere near the kind of
performance he had in the last debate?

WOLFFE: No, I don`t think he can, and I don`t think anyone around him
certainly either the president`s inner circle or more broadly, the Chicago
campaign. Expect him to turn in that kind of performance. Why? Because
he`s been working hard at his prep, which he didn`t do last time around,
because he does take the criticism to heart and he knows how he messed up
here.

Now, this is a different format. It`s town hall. His natural skills
of communication and empathy maybe have a different platform.

The difficult thing is going to be to pivot back to Mitt Romney and to
say, look, who is the real Mitt Romney? Which guy is here on this stage
and where were you for the last two years? That`s the kind of pivot that`s
hard to do when you`re trying to convince undecided voters.

But as you point out quite rightly, that`s just a sliver of the
election out there. He`s also going to reach in a turnout election, base
versus base, he`s going to motivate those base voters in the Democratic
Party who may be not as enthusiastic as they were four years ago.

SCHULTZ: You know, the polls are back to where we were before the
first debate. And Obama supporters, they want to feel good. I mean people
that watch these debates, they want to see their candidate do well. How
much damage would be done if they don`t come away feeling good?

WOLFFE: Well, enthusiasm is a key measure here. You know, one thing
I always compare this election to is 2004. Not just because of the
characters involves or whatever you think about the tactics, but the polls
track closely.

On one different issue, though, if you look at the polls eight years
ago, 2004, Bush and Kerry were tied not after just one debate, but after
two debates. The big difference was that John Kerry actually was behind
when it came or tied to registered voters, likely voters he had an edge.

This president is way ahead on registered voters compared to where
John Kerry was. He actually had a lead. The likely voter sample is
working against this president. We can debate how that`s done, but it does
suggest that enthusiasm is a significant problem for him. That`s where a
strong debate performance really kicks in.

SCHULTZ: Ironically in `04, it was Ohio. In `12, eight years later,
it is Ohio again.

How aggressive does the president need to be on Mitt Romney in this
town hall-style format? Is this in his wheelhouse? And could he go
overboard?

WOLFFE: Look, the big argument that Romney has put all his money on
for the last two years has been about the economy. The reason Ohio is
doing so much better for this president and for Democrats in general is
because of the economy.

The president actually has a good economic story to tell right now.
He`s been burdened by expectations. Obviously, there`s a lot of people out
there looking for work. But the bigger trend in this election, in these
closing weeks isn`t about debate performance, it`s not about the latest ad.
It`s about rising economic confidence.

We`re seeing it across the board. We`re seeing in the president`s
approval numbers. And it`s certainly showing up in those Ohio numbers.

So he needs to be forceful not just about Mitt Romney, but about how
far this country has traveled in four years.

SCHULTZ: We`re seeing the good numbers. We`re seeing the trends and
we`re also hearing the denial coming from the conservatives, no doubt.

Richard Wolffe, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.
Remember to answer tonight`s question there at the bottom of the screen.
Share your thoughts on Twitter @EdShow and on Facebook. We always want to
know what you think.

Coming up, a Romney adviser runs into trouble trying to sell the lies
to FOX News, so you know there must be a problem. Former Ohio Governor Ted
Strickland joins me for the conversation and the (INAUDIBLE) story later.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Coming up, the Romney campaign`s strategy of lie and deny.
Can`t stand up to the facts. Former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland joins me
to discuss Romney`s tax lies and a whole lot more.

Paul Ryan is getting some heat for his Ohio soup kitchen photo op.
Now, the president of the charity said the candidate didn`t have permission
to be there in the first place. We`ll have the latest.

And the candidates gear up for a second debate. Can the president
prove his credibility on foreign policy in the wake of the Benghazi attack?
That`s what the righties are talking. I`ll visit with Howard Fineman and
Michelle Goldberg on that.

Share your thoughts with us on Facebook and on Twitter using the
#EdShow.

We are coming right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW and thanks for watching tonight.

The math still isn`t adding up for Mitt Romney so the lies are just
piling up. This is their campaign. Here`s Romney adviser Ed Gillespie
trying to defend Romney`s tax plan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: They are very questionable. Some of them are blogs, some
from the AEI, which is hardly an independent group.

GILLESPIE: These are very credible sources. And --

WALLACE: One of them is from a guy -- is a blog from a guy who was a
top adviser to George W. Bush. These are hardly nonpartisan studies.

GILLESPIE: Chris, if you look at Harvard and AEI and other studies,
they are very credible sources for economic analysis.

WALLACE: You wouldn`t say that AIE is a conservative think tank?

GILLESPIE: I would say that it is a right-leaning think tank. That
doesn`t make it not credible.

WALLACE: It doesn`t make it nonpartisan.

SCHULTZ: Those six studies don`t hold water. Besides the blog posts
and the right wing bias, two of the so-called studies had had to change
Romney`s tax plan to make it work. These aren`t the only numbers the
Romney camp is lying about. There was vice presidential candidate Paul
Ryan`s claim about unemployment in the debate.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), VICE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: You know what the
unemployment rate in Scranton is today?

JOSEPH BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I sure do.

RYAN: It`s 10 percent. You know what it was when you guys came in --
8.5 percent.

BIDEN: Yes.

RYAN: That`s how it`s going all around America.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Really?

Republican Senator Rob Portman of Ohio was asked about it and he
defended Ryan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PORTMAN: I think what he was saying is the truth, which is
unemployment is higher today than it was when the president took office.
And, you know, unfortunately, in the meantime, we have created net zero
jobs, Jake.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Just throw it out there. Just throw it out -- it doesn`t
matter. Something is going to stick up here.

Nothing like backing up lies with more lies. Unemployment, my
friends, is not higher today than when President Obama took office.

That`s a fact. There have been 325,000 net jobs since President
Obama`s inauguration. Despite all the ground President Obama had to make
up from the Bush recession, he has created 31 months of private sector job
growth and reduced the federal payroll and froze in the same (INAUDIBLE) a
couple of years.

The Obama recovery has produced 4.4 million jobs overall, 5 million in
the private sector.

Let`s turn to former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, an Obama 2012
campaign co-chair. It`s about Ohio. Do the people believe these lies?

I mean, this is clearly their strategy, Governor.

TED STRICKLAND (D), FORMER OHIO GOVERNOR: Ed, I am so proud of Ohio
because we aren`t believing the lies and that`s why the president maintains
a lead in Ohio. Ohioans know this economy is coming back in large part
because of the Recovery Act, because of the auto rescue. This president
has done a good job.

We`re on our way forward. We don`t want to go back to the failed
policies of the Bush administration.

SCHULTZ: They are just claiming that, you know, unemployment numbers,
you`re cooking the books. They can`t stand the fact that the unemployment
rate has dropped below 8 percent.

STRICKLAND: That`s right.

SCHULTZ: There is a sense that it`s headed all in the right
direction. But do you feel that independent voters in your state of Ohio
get that?

STRICKLAND: Well, apparently they do. For several months now, the
president has maintained a relatively small, but a very consistent lead.
And that lead is holding firm during these closing dates to this campaign.
And, you know, Ed, I`m proud to say that no Republican has ever won the
presidency without winning Ohio.

And I think Ohio is going to deprive Mitt Romney of his chance to be
the president.

SCHULTZ: Well, his numbers on his tax plan don`t add up and he
doesn`t give specifics. How`s he going to navigate through this?

STRICKLAND: Ed, he doesn`t want to confess.

SCHULTZ: I mean, you have a sitting United States senator right there
backing what Paul Ryan is saying. You know Rob Portman.

STRICKLAND: I know Rob very well. But the fact is --

SCHULTZ: He`s lying.

STRICKLAND: Well, the only way that the tax plan works, the only
thing he can do that really has money in savings is the mortgage deduction.

SCHULTZ: Yes.

STRICKLAND: It`s the charitable deduction. It`s the education
deduction. It`s the health care deduction.

And Mitt Romney does not have the courage to tell the American people
what he`s planning. But, Ed, if he were to take on those deductions, those
deductions strike at the very heart of the middle class and that`s why he`s
unwilling to tell us the truth.

And so, that`s why we`re getting all of this fuzzy math, Ed. It`s
fuzzy math.

SCHULTZ: Well, according to a Kaiser Foundation study, a Medicare
voucher system would raise premiums for 60 percent of Medicare
beneficiaries. The Romney campaign says the study wasn`t based on their
exact plan, that the Romney camp doesn`t provide any details on it either.

So how do the Democrats keep up the fight against an opponent that
lies and denies so often?

STRICKLAND: Well, I mean, we`ve got to tell the truth. And the fact
is, if we just look at this Romney budget. You know, Paul Ryan was chosen
to be the vice presidential candidate in large part because of his budget.

What does his budget do? It doesn`t achieve balance for 30 years. It
would begin the privatization of Social Security. It would voucherize
Medicaid. It would slash Medicaid to the states. It would cut Pell
Grants.

All of these programs that are so important to the middle class and
now Mitt Romney is trying to walk away from some of that and appear to be a
moderate. But we know in Ohio, we have watched this man, we have heard him
talk about the 47 percent and that includes a lot of Ohioans and a lot of
people from Wisconsin and Virginia and these battleground states. That`s
why Mitt Romney is in trouble.

SCHULTZ: This misinformation is in a fever pitch.

STRICKLAND: It is.

SCHULTZ: Quickly, are you concerned about these DVDs that are being
delivered into Ohio?

STRICKLAND: Well, you know, I`m concerned about all of this. But
these kinds of dirty tricks, I think, may have a slight impact.

But, listen, people are common sense folk, at least in my state of
Ohio. And we understand who is on our side and a man who has a Swiss bank
account who won`t reveal his income tax returns, who talks about enjoying
firing people, who has elevators for car, who talks about his wife`s
multiple Cadillacs, who is captured on video really talking in the most
disrespectful way about hard-working Americans, veterans and retired folks
and students.

There`s a Scripture verse in the Book of Proverbs that says, "As a man
thinketh in his heart, so is he." We saw something about Mitt Romney`s
heart in that video and it wasn`t a pretty picture.

SCHULTZ: Former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, great to have you with
us tonight on THE ED SHOW. Thanks so much.

STRICKLAND: Thank you. Great to be with you.

SCHULTZ: Coming up, Paul Ryan stops by a soup kitchen but he didn`t
exactly pitch in and help out. E.J. Dionne will join me for the discussion
and a whole lot more.

And Mitt Romney`s economic model is on full display in Freeport,
Illinois. Jobs are being outsourced to China to turn a profit for Bain
Capital. Tonight, we`re talking to one of the workers whose job is being
shipped overseas. Stay tuned.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: This is a story about being a phony, meaning not real.

Over the weekend, Paul Ryan was on the campaign trail in Youngstown,
Ohio. On his way to the airport, Ryan stopped by a local soup kitchen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The vice presidential candidate pitched in at a
Youngstown soup kitchen following his forum at YSU. Paul Romney helped
wash dishes and these children help dry after lunch was served at St.
Vincent de Paul Society dining hall.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Hold the phone. That`s not the whole story, according to
"The Washington Post".

By the time the GOP vice presidential nominee and his family had
arrived, the grits, sausage, donuts had been served. The hall was empty
and the volunteers appeared to have already cleaned up. But that didn`t
stop Ryan from missing out on a great photo-op.

As "The New York Times" reports, the family put on aprons and washed
several large pans, though they didn`t appear needing to be washed,
according to a poll reporter.

Well, once those clean dishes got another wash as "The Washington
Post" reports, Ryan was on his way. Ryan talked to some men who appeared
to be homeless but reporters were not allowed to listen in on the exchange.

I wonder what Ryan told those men he talked to. He probably didn`t
give much detail on this budget. He probably didn`t tell them he plans to
turn Medicaid into a block grant program to voucher Medicare, to slash
billions from food assistance programs. Now, the head of the Ohio charity
tells "The Washington Post" the Romney campaign ramrodded their way into
the soup kitchen and the Ryan visit has caused him all kinds of grief.

Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vince De Paul
Society points out, "We`re a faith-based organization. We are apolitical
because majority of our funding is from private donations."

Antal is worried that Ryan`s visit will alienate or upset donors
adding, "The photo-op they did wasn`t even accurate. He did nothing. He
just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining hall."

I`m joined tonight by MSNBC contributor and "Washington Post"
columnist E.J. Dionne, author of the book "Our Divided Political Heart."

E.J., what do you make of this? Is this just one of the days on the
campaign trail that screwed up? What do you make of it?

E.J. DIONNE, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Well, there is that. First of
all, we should honor the Saint Vincent Depaul Society. These guys do great
work. My late dad was actually active in the Saint Vincent Depaul. And if
Ryan had wanted to do a serious effort to lift up their work and say, we
need this kind of work in the country, more power to him.

But if you`re going to have a photo op, do it right. Get permission
of the group. Don`t cause them trouble. But I don`t even think that`s the
most important part of the story. I think there`s a real metaphor here,
because when you look at the Ryan budget, the misfired photo op sort of
points you right to the Ryan budget.

And in the Ryan budget, according to the Center on Budget and Policy
Priorities, 62 percent of the cuts are in programs for low-income people.
Now faith-based organizations are fantastic. They do great work. But the
people who run them will tell you they cannot pick up all of the slack that
there would be if the government had cuts of that kind.

You had my friend Sister Simone Campbell on the other night, who
pointed out or you pointed out, that there`s a study by Bread for the World
that showed if you took those food stamp cuts, every church in the country
would have to come up with 50,000 bucks. Most churches don`t have that
money. You shouldn`t be cutting people off Food Stamps and expecting
groups like Saint Vincent Depaul to pick up all that slack.

SCHULTZ: Ryan has said that 30 percent of Americans want a welfare
state, 30 percent of people are takers. How does he square those comments
with this visit right here? What do you think this visit was all about?

DIONNE: Well, I think it`s been clear for awhile, especially since
the 47 percent video, that the Republicans said whoops, where did that
compassionate conservatism go. We better show we have a heart somehow
because those comments are really hurting us.

So they don`t want to talk about budgets. They want to put out feel-
good words, and Mitt Romney offered some of those in the first debate. And
they want to give us pictures that say actually, we have big hearts. Well,
you can`t make bricks without straw. Let`s -- show us what your priorities
are. Some of it, yes, should come from voluntarily contributions. But we
built these programs because we know none of us -- we`re not collectively
generous enough to help the left out. And we`re trying to help people get
back on their feet.

So I think they are just trying to hide what their budgets would
actually do.

SCHULTZ: You know, Youngstown, Ohio, has been an economically
depressed area for decades under numerous administrations. So how can Ryan
make the case for his policies when the people are already struggling
there? He wants to cut them even further.

I mean, and there`s also a sense of realness about a candidate to go
in and actually interact with people. Here he is doing a pots and pans
kind of thing. Nobody is around. You can tell that the kitchen is already
cleaned up. What does that say about his judgment?

DIONNE: Yes, I mean, if you`re going to do that, if you want to show
compassion, talk to folks. Talk to the people who are homeless. People
who do this work all the time develop real relationships, discover that in
a lot of cases this is a there but for the grace of God circumstance. You
can understand a lot of people are poor not because they lack gumption, not
because they`re not willing to work, but because they have run into hard
times or some tragedy in their life.

That is very useful for politicians to hear, because as it is, they
spend way too much time with very rich people who give them money.

SCHULTZ: And I find it very interesting that he goes into a soup
kitchen for the homeless in Youngstown, Ohio, does the photo-op, yet this
campaign has denied going along with and meeting with Sister Simone
Campbell, who you mentioned earlier. She has put out the invitation. It
would seem to me that would be the real part of the story.

E.J. Dionne, great to have you with us tonight. Thanks so much.

There`s a lot more coming up in the next half hour of THE ED SHOW.
Stay with us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROMNEY: You said you get a deduction for taking a plant overseas? I
have been in business for 25 years. I have no idea what you`re talking
about.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Mitt Romney lied about shipping jobs to China. And the
people of Freeport, Illinois, are living proof. Workers at Bain-owned
Sensata are about to lose their jobs. But they are not going down without
a fight. We`ll meet one of them next.

Sherrod Brown destroyed his opponent at their first Ohio Senate
debate. We`ll bring you the tape.

And Mitt Romney is throwing the long ball on Libya.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: David Axelrod made the claim that Mitt Romney`s
doing his best to exploit this.

RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER MAYOR OF NEW YORK: He should be exploiting it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Coming up, how the president needs to handle the Benghazi
question at the debate.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And they introduced their transition team. And
the next bullet on their meeting was, by the way, by the end of 2012, all
the jobs in this plant will be moved to China.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Welcome back to THE ED SHOW. We first brought you the story
of Sensata Technologies back in July here on THE ED SHOW. Sensata is a car
sensor manufacturing company in Freeport, Illinois, middle of the country.
And it`s majority owned by Bain Capital.

The company is set to close its Illinois factory by the end of 2012
and outsource the jobs to China. It puts workers in a desperate situation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They also informed us that they would be
bringing some of the people from China for us to train. Like a slap in the
face. I mean, just think how you would feel. You`re taking my job, but
then I have to train you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The company set a record for profits last year.
We make the very best product in the world in that plant. And their only
motivation is they want more money.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Sensata had record profits last year. And it`s still not
good enough. Workers from Sensata are currently protesting their jobs
being shipped to China. They have set up a camp called Bain Port across
the street from the factory. And it`s starting to gain national attention.

Illinois Senator Dick Durbin announced that he will visit Bain Port
tomorrow morning. He`s the first federal official to visit Sensata
workers. Mitt Romney`s campaign says he`s no longer responsible for Bain`s
management decisions. However, "the New York Times" reports "it`s possible
for Romney to profit from the outsourcing because he still owns eight
million dollars worth of Bain funds."

The story is important because I think it paints a clear picture of
who and what Mitt Romney`s economy is all about and what he really cares
about. What`s happening in Freeport, Illinois, is about greed. It`s about
turning a profit at the expense of hard working Americans and families who
are really suffering because of this decision.

Mitt Romney has done this his entire life. And now it`s catching up
with him. No matter how hard Romney tries to spin the facts, this is who
he really is. What`s happening to these workers in Illinois is the
economic model Mitt Romney believes in.

THE ED SHOW will be in Freeport, Illinois, doing our show this Friday
night to bring you more details about what`s happening to these workers and
these families in this Freeport, Illinois, community. I`m honored to take
the show on the road. Our crew will be there this Friday night in
Freeport, Illinois.

Sensata worker Mary Jo Kerr is one of hundred of workers whose jobs at
the auto sensor plant in Freeport, Illinois, are being shipped to China.
She will join other workers outside the debate tomorrow night protesting
Mitt Romney and Bain.

Mary Jo, great to have you with us tonight.

MARY JO KERR, SENSATA WORKER: Thanks for having me.

SCHULTZ: I want you to tell us, what has your family gone through?
How emotional has this been.

KERR: It`s been an emotional roller coaster ever since they told us
that they were going to shut our Freeport plant. My husband worked there
for 18 years. And it was devastating the fact that we didn`t know what we
were going to do, the fact that the both of us were going to lose our jobs.
We have three small children. We didn`t know how we were going to take
care of them. We have bills just like everybody else.

Fortunately, my husband was able to find another job, but it`s still
going to be hard with him being the sole provider when it comes --

SCHULTZ: So you have gone from two incomes to one income. Do you
have health insurance?

KERR: Yes, we do.

SCHULTZ: Finally.

KERR: Yes.

SCHULTZ: What`s the mood of the town there in Freeport? Is the town
-- what kind of an impact is this going to have?

KERR: It`s going to have a huge impact. I mean, half of Freeport
works at Sensata. And once it closes, it is devastating the whole entire
town. Everybody is just walking around slumped over, not knowing what they
are going to do.

SCHULTZ: You were somewhat akin to liking Mitt Romney, were you not?

KERR: Yes, I was.

SCHULTZ: Tell us about that.

KERR: I was like everybody else. You know, he`s going to do it.
He`s going to create American jobs. You know, he says that`s what he`s
going to do and that`s what his whole campaign was about. I`m going to
create American jobs.

When I found out that he owned Bain Capital and Bain Capital owned
Sensata, and they were shipping our jobs to China, I was furious.

SCHULTZ: What do you think when you see him talk about American jobs
on the campaign trail and talk about our economy, yet this is happening?

KERR: He`s -- to be honest with you, he`s just a bold-faced liar.
He`s going out there saying I`m going to create American jobs when, no,
he`s not. He`s profiting off of jobs going overseas.

SCHULTZ: What was it like to have the Chinese workers come learn how
to do the jobs that your workers were doing?

KERR: It was hard. Having to train somebody to take your job and you
don`t have any control over it, that was probably the hardest thing I`ve
had to do.

SCHULTZ: Did they really take down the American flag and put up a
Chinese flag?

KERR: Actually, they took down the American flag, but they did not
put up a Chinese flag. The Chines flag we put up over across the street at
Bain Port.

SCHULTZ: OK. Where does this leave all of these families? What`s
going to happen to Freeport, Illinois?

KERR: It`s going to become a ghost town. That`s one major company in
Freeport. We only have two sole big companies. And that`s Sensata,
Honeywell and Titan Tires. And once Sensata goes down, I mean, it`s going
to be hard for anybody to find a job, because there`s nothing around there.

SCHULTZ: Normally when a company is not doing very well, the
employees know it. Was it record profits for Sensata? Was it good? And
that makes it hard to understand why this is happening?

KERR: Yes, we don`t understand. From my understanding is they liked
Freeport. They liked the location. But it was we need more money.

SCHULTZ: Mary Jo Kerr, thanks for coming in tonight. Appreciate it
so much.

Again, THE ED SHOW will be live from Freeport, Illinois, on Friday.
We will be broadcasting from what`s become known as Bain Port, highlighting
the devastating effects outsourcing. You don`t want to miss it. We`ll get
it in detail.

Coming up, Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown takes his Republican challenger
to task for saying that he wouldn`t have supported the automobile rescue,
the loan program which saved thousands of Ohio jobs? A highlight from
their first debate, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SCHULTZ: President Obama is still lead in leading in the polls in
Ohio because he stood up for middle class workers when the automobile loan
came through and the industry was on the verge of collapse. Today, Senator
Sherrod Brown had his first debate against Republican challenger Josh
Mandel. And he took the opportunity to show us just what standing up for
the middle class looks like.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. SHERROD BROWN (D), OHIO: It`s not just about the big assembly
plants in Lordstown and in Toledo. It`s about the seat frames made in
Lorraine, the air bag components made in Brunswick, the steel and aluminum,
mayor, that`s made in this city.

It`s also about the local diner in Brookpark, and the hardware store
owner in Avon Lake. This job is about real people with real families and
real problems and real hopes and dreams.

Yet Josh Mandel said my vote on the auto rescue, and I assume Senator
Voinovich`s vote too, was un-American. Un-American. I call that vote
doing my job to fight for their jobs.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Senator Brown has been the target of more outside spending
than any other member of the United States Senate in this election cycle.
Republican groups have flooded the state with more than 20 million dollars
to defeat him, which means if Senator Brown wins, it could be the costliest
Senate loss ever for Republicans.

Senator Brown stands up for the middle class and American workers when
it matters most. When you stand with American workers, you can`t go wrong
and you won`t lose.

Tonight in our survey, I asked will President Obama win tomorrow
night`s debate? Ninety four percent of you say yes; six percent of you
said no.

Coming up, President Obama gets pushed on foreign policy. Find out
how he handled it the last time and what he`ll be up against tomorrow night
when it comes to foreign policy. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If Pakistan is unable
or unwilling to hunt down bin Laden and take him out, then we should. Now
Senator McCain suggests that somehow, you know, I`m green behind the ears
and I`m just spouting off. And he`s somber and responsible.

SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: Thank you very much.

OBAMA: Senator McCain, this is the guy who sang "bomb, bomb, bomb
Iran," who called for the annihilation of North Korea. That I don`t think
is an example of speaking softly.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: President Obama showed how tough he can be on foreign policy
during the debate with John McCain four years ago. The president is going
to have to get after it and prove himself again tomorrow night. This time,
the Republicans are accusing the Obama administration of hiding details
about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. Gunmen killed the U.S.
ambassador and three other Americans last month. There are legitimate
questions about the attack, but the Republicans claim there`s a cover up.

Tonight, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced that she`s
taking full responsibility for the Benghazi attack. Secretary Clinton told
NBC News, quote, "we did everything we could to keep our people safe, which
is my primary responsibility." Clinton says the attack in Benghazi should
not be a political issue.

But the attack might be tough for Romney to resist tomorrow night.
Remember, Romney told donors at a high dollar fundraiser that he would look
for a crisis to exploit. Today his friend Rudy Giuliani agreed. He thinks
Romney should exploit the attack in Benghazi during tomorrow night`s
debate.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: He should be exploiting it. I mean, the fact is there`s a
real chance there`s a cover up here. They are trying to run out the clock.
Either he`s not telling the truth or this administration is so disengaged,
we need another administration that can protect us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SCHULTZ: Here`s the problem for Romney. President Obama has a good
foreign policy record to run on. Bin Laden is dead. Our troops are out of
Iraq. We have a date certain to pull troops out of Afghanistan. The
president proved himself on foreign policy in the 2008 debate. And he`s
going to have to do it again tomorrow night.

I`m joined tonight by Michelle Goldberg, senior contributing writer
for "Newsweek" and the "Daily Beast." And also with us tonight, Howard
Fineman, NBC News political analyst and the editorial director of the
Huffington Post Media Group.

Great to have both of you with us tonight. Howard, you first. Will
Secretary Clinton`s comments tonight help the president in any way?

HOWARD FINEMAN, "NEWSWEEK": No, they will not. As a matter of fact,
having Hillary Clinton step up and take full responsibility, whatever that
precisely means, just makes it even look more political, certainly in the
eyes of Republicans, and will be considered sort of fresh meat for the
Republicans to go after.

You can be sure that Mitt Romney will go after it as hard as he can,
as fast as he can, in part because his people love it, because they can try
to make it a question of character, and because Joe Biden gave them an
opening last week by saying that the White House and that he and the
president knew nothing about it, which sounded a little bit like explaining
slightly too much.

So yes, you can expect the president to be attacked on it. And I
expect the president to be able to give a pretty good and very thorough and
convincing answer. If he doesn`t, it will be a problem.

SCHULTZ: All right, Michelle, how should the president handle
Benghazi when it comes up in the debate?

MICHELLE GOLDBERG, "NEWSWEEK": I think more broadly, I have never
understood why Obama doesn`t go on the attack on foreign policy more
generally and kind of say, you know, do you want another war? Do you want
two more wars. What are they proposing to do in Syria, in Iran, beyond
what we have already done? Biden was really effective doing that. Obama
should have done that in the first debate and should definitely do that
now.

On Benghazi in particular, I mean, there clearly was a real
intelligence failure that he can only kind of apologize for and promise to
avenge. But one of the distortions you seem to hear from the Republicans
is that this was somehow -- the new Libyan government was somehow complicit
in this attack, that we gotten rid of Gadhafi and installed an even less-
friendly regime, which is a complete distortion.

I think one of the most hopeful moments we`ve seen in the Middle East
recently was after this attack when the people of Benghazi rose up and went
and disarmed these militias, because it really is one of the most pro-
American populations in the region. That was the premise of the neo-
conservative foreign policy people who surround Romney. That`s what they
wanted to do in Iraq. Obama has done it with very, very little loss of
life in Libya.

SCHULTZ: All right. Howard, how important -- how high are the stakes
for the president tomorrow night?

FINEMAN: Well, it`s a cliche to say the stakes are high when debates
take place, but this one truly is because of his performance last time
around. So what he has to do is to show up, to look like he wants the job
and like it`s an urgent matter that he be reelected for the good of all
Americans. He needs to -- he needs to explain why a second term is
necessary and logical. And he has to also do more to explain just what
progress has been made.

There`s been some good economic numbers lately. He has got to talk
about those without sounding like the problem has been solved. He has got
to be sharp. He`s got to be focused. And he`s also got to ask the
question of who is Mitt Romney? Mitt Romney has to be called to account
for his vagueness, for his evasions, for his flip-flops, for his shape-
shifting nature, which to some undecided voters I think is still making
them hesitate.

The president needs to do that while appealing in a town hall setting,
essentially for the tacit support, to get those people in the town hall
behind him in demanding answers from Mitt Romney.

SCHULTZ: Michelle, the format, does it play to his wheelhouse, do you
think?

GOLDBERG: I certainly think it does, although it makes it a little
harder to do one of the things he has to do, which is basically convince
people that Mitt Romney is a liar without using the word liar. It`s not a
format that`s necessarily really conducive to confrontation, but it is
definitely -- it`s a format -- he`s good at connecting with people one-on-
one in a way that Romney historically hasn`t been.

FINEMAN: Ed, I`ve been told by people who deal with these kinds of
debates that the key -- these townhalls -- the key is to subtly and as well
as you can, to try to get the audience behind you in demanding asking
questions or demanding answers of the other person. It`s a tricky bank
shot. But if it works, it can work very well.

SCHULTZ: Michelle Goldberg, Howard Fineman, great to have you with us
tonight. Thanks so much.

(CROSS TALK)

SCHULTZ: That`s THE ED SHOW. I`m Ed Schultz. "THE RACHEL MADDOW
SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel. We`re gearing up for
another big one tomorrow night.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
BE UPDATED.
END

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