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MSNBC "The Ed Show" - Transcript

Interview

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SCHULTZ: Walker, he"s dancing big-time. The prank call makes him look like a fraud, a liar, and a guy with major presidential aspirations. It also validates the thousands of protesters and the 14 Senate Democrats who were standing up to his radical agenda.

Get your cell phones out, folks, I want to know what you think on this one tonight. Tonight"s text question is: Do the Walker tapes prove that Governor Walker is beholding to the Koch brothers and big business?

Text "A" for yes, text "B" for no, to 622639. We"ll bring you the results later on in the show.

Joining us now from an undisclosed location is Wisconsin State Senator Lena Taylor.

Senator, you"re one of the 14. Does this story strengthen your resolve tonight? Is this the smoking gun? What do you think?

STATE SEN. LENA TAYLOR (D), WISCONSIN: It definitely strengthens my resolve in the fact that it just shows that he has no character. His integrity is in question. He"s not been honest with the Wisconsinites.

And it really shows what we"ve been saying the whole time, this has not been about the budget. It"s a fabricated budget crisis, and the only thing he wants to do is bust unions. He"s, you know, really the puppet of the Koch brothers.

SCHULTZ: Does this keep the 14, say, tighter than ever? And out of the state even longer?

TAYLOR: At this juncture, we have not decided to go back. And surely keeping our checks is not the threat that"s going to make us go back. I mean, that"s ridiculous.

SCHULTZ: Senator Taylor, how do you think Wisconsin residents are going to respond to this tape, and this whole thing where the governor thought he was talking to one of the Koch brothers? I mean, isn"t he going to have a severe credibility problem with all residents of Wisconsin, even the ones that support him? And how can the ones that even support him come out and say, oh, this is no big deal? What do you make of all of that? What about the Wisconsin residents?

TAYLOR: You know, the Wisconsin way is about integrity. And so, I"m convinced that individuals will have a problem. He already had his numbers going down by about 10 points or so. And more importantly, the Wisconsin residents are with the Wisconsin 14.

The polls show 60 to 70-something percent of individuals agree that workers should be able to have their rights. So, now, knowing that basically we"re not open for business, but we"re for sale, under Governor Walker, I believe that the numbers will go up. His numbers will go down. And people will continue to go to the capital and make a stand against him.

SCHULTZ: What about Senator Cullen? He claims that he spoke to Senator Cullen. First of all, does the group of 14 know that Cullen spoke to the governor? And secondly, is he a weak link?

TAYLOR: No, he"s not a weak link. Yes, we did know he spoke to him. Senator Cullen told him. We all reached out to Republicans, and the majority--the minority leader has also spoken with the governor. And we"ve reached out to the majority leaders.

So, this is not unusual. We decided that we wanted individuals to reach out and see if they could make any leeway with whatever Republican leaderships that they had because we need someone to have courage and show leadership.

So, when Senator Cullen shared with us the conversation he had with the governor, clearly, the governor has pegged Senator Cullen wrong. He has not wavered. He"s never wavered. And he"s with us. And we"re united and we"re not turning back at this juncture.

SCHULTZ: Has the governor ever spent 20 minutes talking to you?

TAYLOR: You know, I"ve been trying to talk to the governor since before he got elected and since he"s been elected. He just won"t have a meeting with me. I don"t know what it is. He never liked those dual meetings with me.

SCHULTZ: And share with our viewers tonight, if you can, Senator, you can tell us now, weren"t the 14 of you watching TV when this story came out and say, can you believe this? This is--there"s an element--I know this is a very serious issue because this is affecting people"s lives. But this has got a real comical element to it, doesn"t it? I mean, he didn"t even know who he was talking to.

TAYLOR: You know, I had to ask a couple times, is this real? Did he really do this?

And it was really, to be honest, I think we were more shamed, more shamed as Wisconsinites that our governor lacks the integrity--I mean, I really wonder, where was he when his dad was preaching?

SCHULTZ: Good question. Senator, great to have you with us tonight.

I appreciate your time. Thanks so much.

TAYLOR: Thank you.

SCHULTZ: Senator Lena Taylor with us here on THE ED SHOW.

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