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MSNBC "Decision 08" - Transcript


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MSNBC "Decision 08"

MR. OLBERMANN: Let's get early reaction, after the polls closed just 19 minutes ago, from the Obama campaign, Congressman Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania joining us now.

Congressman, thanks for your time tonight.

REP. MURPHY: Thanks, Keith. I appreciate it. And actually, I went to college in Wilkes-Barre and my brother lives there, and he's supporting Barack Obama, Keith. And, in fact, he's overseas right now with our military. And I think that's one of the things that differentiates these two candidates. Barack Obama had the judgment before the war to speak out against Iraq, and now he has the judgment to lead our troops out of Iraq within the first 16 months.

MR. OLBERMANN: To what degree is that -- that does not turn up in the exit polls as the number one issue at the moment. Obviously it has been. It was certainly when this campaign started a year and a quarter ago. What is the feel on the ground relatively to it -- less about Obama and Clinton and more about the issue and when it perhaps comes up and shows itself at its correct size?

REP. MURPHY: Right. And Keith, I think the number one issue that people care about is change. And the people are smarter sometimes than the people who overanalyze this stuff. The people in Pennsylvania and across our country, Keith, understand that Iraq and the economy go hand in hand. When you spend $3 trillion in Iraq, that's $3 trillion you can't spend on education, on infrastructure, on creating these green-collar manufacturing jobs for green energy so we can wean ourselves off that foreign oil. They get it.

And that's why I think Barack Obama has been dramatically able to cut into Senator Clinton's lead. She was up 33 points -- 33 points, Keith. It's now hopefully going to be in single digits, and I think that would be a great night for Barack Obama.

MR. OLBERMANN: Is there a disconnect, Congressman? The number we just saw in the exit poll is 73 percent of voters in Pennsylvania. Three-quarters, essentially, say the thing that they want most in their presidential candidate is to bring change. And yet what we're looking at right now is something close to a tie. It's certainly not 73 percent to 22 percent in the outcome of this or anything like that. What does that say about a disconnect between the change candidate and Senator Obama's support?

REP. MURPHY: I think you have to look at it -- you can't look at it in a vacuum, Keith. You've got to say, look, Pennsylvania is a state where Senator Clinton is well-known. She's a neighboring U.S. senator, just up north of New York. The fact that the Clinton brand name here -- it's the second-oldest state in the entire country.

He had a lot of obstacles. It's a closed primary today, so people couldn't register, or if they were independent, they couldn't vote for Barack Obama today. I know I was at a train station yesterday morning and a woman grabbed me and she said, "Patrick, I would love to vote for Barack Obama tomorrow, but I forgot to change. I thought I could vote tomorrow, but I'm an independent." And I said, "Well, we've got to get you to become a Democrat before next November, even though you could vote on that."

But Keith, I think people have been inspired across Pennsylvania. I just was down in Center City coming to the studio, Keith. There is a line of people a few blocks away here, at least 65 deep, waiting to vote, to cast their vote for change. And I think, you know, if it becomes within single digits, it's a great night for the Barack Obama campaign.

MR. OLBERMANN: One would think all the Democrats would be saluting that, that apparently it's double the 2004 primary totals.

Congressman Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania, thanks for your time tonight, sir.

REP. MURPHY: Thank you, Keith.

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