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MSNBC "The Ed Show" - Transcript


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Great to have you with us, Congresswoman. Thank you for your time

REP. TAMMY BALDWIN (D), WISCONSIN: It`s great to join you, Ed. Thank

SCHULTZ: You bet.

I know a little bit about the state. I know liberals and progressives and free thinkers in Wisconsin cannot stand Karl Rove. That`s the one guy on the conservative side they have no time for.

In some funny way, could it help you that he`s targeting you now with a buy of such substantial number of over $900,000 to motivate your base?

BALDWIN: You know, I think what`s happening in the state of Wisconsin, and why you`re seeing the polls move the way you are, is that people who are hardworking and trying to get ahead want somebody who`s going to fight for them and not somebody who`s going to fight for the big special interests. They see somebody like Karl Rove or my opponent who stands for getting more power for the big money and special interests in Washington.

They have enough power already. They have enough representation.

People want somebody who`s going to fight for them, and I think when they
see Karl Rove come in and buy up nearly $1 million of airtime in Wisconsin,
they`re saying, who is this guy for? And they`re seeing who I`m for.

So I think that`s a lot to do with why we`re seeing the poll numbers go the way they are.

SCHULTZ: And this 47 percent remark that Mitt Romney made back in May, which has gotten big play all week long, does it affect Wisconsin voters? Does this really describe who the Republicans are, who the conservatives are? How does it play in Wisconsin?

BALDWIN: Well, first of all, I think people are shocked and disappointed as I am to hear and see those remarks. You know, he said he didn`t care about almost half the population. And I think, though, Wisconsinites will judge each candidate individually, which is why I was particularly surprised to see my opponent, Tommy, go on FOX News yesterday and defend those remarks of Mitt Romney, try to explain them.

Look, we need somebody who`s going to go to the U.S. Senate to fight for the hardworking families of Wisconsin. That`s what people are going to be thinking about. They`re going to be thinking about jobs and the economy moving forward when they into the polling place on November 6th.

SCHULTZ: Tommy Thompson has name recognition probably as good as anybody in Wisconsin, but he`s got Bush baggage. He was in that administration.

Why are you surging in the polls? What`s happening?

BALDWIN: Well, I think you just named it. As people are -- you know, Tommy left the state after serving as governor, joined the Bush administration, and first in his role as a public servant in that administration, he gave a sweetheart deal to the drug companies with the Medicare Part D benefit. He oversaw the writing into federal law of a provision that says Medicare can`t bargain with the drug companies for better drug prices for seniors. And it has cost us dearly, tens of
billions of dollars, unfunded in that particular package.

But if that weren`t enough, when he left public service, he joined forces with some of the lobbyists who represent the very same interests, and he`s advising them, consulting with them, et cetera.

People see the Tommy who has now returned to the state to run for U.S. Senate and say, he`s not fighting for us, he`s not sticking up for us anymore.

And they know I am. And that is really why you`re seeing some movement in Wisconsin.

SCHULTZ: What about Wisconsin`s, the last two years, the political history and the ledger of the last two years. Is there any sort of political exhaustion that`s taking place? The recall, of course, the Democrats got the Senate back. Walker retained his seat. Although there`s been a judge`s ruling that takes away what he really wanted to do when it came to collective bargaining.

I mean, there`s just been a lot of stuff. It`s been one petition after another.

It`s been one election after another. It`s been one political ad after another.

I mean, it`s been ground zero of politics in America over the last two years. Does that help or hurt you in any way?

BALDWIN: Well, first of all, I think you`re right, that there was some exhaustion, especially among the people who work so hard. And some people have taken a little bit of a rest during the early part of the summer, but I can tell you, over the last couple of months, people are reengaged because they understand what this fight is about.


BALDWIN: This fight for our future, this fight going forward. We, you know, maybe some people think that it was the practice round, but, look, the stakes in this election moving forward at the presidential level, at the U.S. Senate level, at the house level, are huge.

And it`s really about a fair economy. One set of rules that apply to Wall Street and Main Street. In taxes, not having a set of rules that apply for the very rich and one for the rest of us.

And this is the difference between the candidates substantively, between myself and my opponent --


BALDWIN: -- and it`s also who are you fighting for and what have you done with your life recently?

SCHULTZ: And I think we can come to the conclusion that Paul Ryan hasn`t done much for the man on top of the ticket, because President Obama seems to be holding a very solid lead and you are gaining in Wisconsin.

All the best to you, Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin. Thanks for joining us
tonight on THE ED SHOW.


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