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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT
Obama's Health Care Win
Aired June 28, 2012 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PIERS MORGAN, CNN HOST: Tonight, the historic moment that may win or lose the election for President Obama.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I didn't do this because it was good politics. I did it because I believed it was good for the country.
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What the court did not do on its last day in session, I will do on my first day if elected president of the United States.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: The Supreme Court dramatically keeps Obamacare alive. But who are the real winners and who are the losers, and what happens now? Tonight, top people from both sides debate it out.
Plus, Patrick Kennedy. Health care was his father's legacy. And Rick Santorum, he's not happy at all.
Also, this is what Rielle Hunter told me last night about John Edwards.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RIELLE HUNTER, AUTHOR, "WHAT REALLY HAPPENED": I don't think he was in his right mind when he did that. He was temporarily insane.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Now I'll ask top doctors if Rielle herself is thinking straight.
This is PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT.
Good evening. Our "Big Story" tonight a big day for President Obama. He stakes his presidency on health care. And today, the Supreme Court upheld his signature legislation after a bruising battle. The president acknowledged as much when he spoke shortly after the ruling came down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: I know the debate over this law has been divisive. I respect the very real concerns that millions of Americans have shared.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: So what will today's health care decision mean in the election?
Joining me now is Obama campaign co-chair, Massachusetts governor, Deval Patrick.
Welcome, Governor. I suppose it's an interesting day, isn't it? It's obviously a very big successful day.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK (D), MASSACHUSETTS: It's a good day, Piers. A good day.
MORGAN: For the president. Right, it's a good day. Could it backfire in the longer term the election? Could this now galvanize the Republican base vote to come out and cause you bigger problems than the success is worth enjoying in the short term?
PATRICK: Well, let me say first, Piers, something that may cause you and maybe some of your more cynical viewers to roll their eyes.
The victory today is not a political victory. It's a victory for the American people. It's a victory for the 30 million people who have no health care. For the 130 million who have a pre-existing condition or who are at risk of going bankrupt, or were at risk of going bankrupt if they were seriously ill. It's a victory for all of the young adults who are able to stay on their parent's health insurance plans until the age of 26.
This does a lot of good for a lot of Americans. In the same way that the model for it here in Massachusetts did a lot of good and does a lot good today for our citizens here at home. So that's the first thing. And that's important first and foremost to the president and to me.
Politically, I think what you see is that the Republicans, once again, are demonstrating that their only plan and their only agenda is to say no when the president says yes. It's true of health care. It's also true of his jobs plan. It's true of deficit reduction and a whole host of things. So that choice, which is not a neutral policy choice, it's really about, are we in this together? And are we going to do what's necessary to lift the country? Versus what the congressional Republicans have been driving, which is to tear each other apart and tear -- and tear the country down, I think is more and more on display for the American people to choose. And I think the American people will choose wisely.
MORGAN: Now, I come from a country where free health care for all is a given.
MORGAN: So I've always found this kind of an odd debate that 30 million people more could be covered by this. And there's so much anger about it.
MORGAN: It seems an alien thing to me. But I understand today the way the Republicans are now trying to reframe this, having suffered obviously a loss today, is this question of it becoming now a tax, not a penalty. And they're saying it's going to cost the American public $500 billion in taxation. What do you guys say to this charge now that really this is just what it is, it's just a new tax?
PATRICK: Well, two things I would say. First of all, I think it was the Congressional Budget Office that projects that health care reform, the Affordable Care Act, that actually reduces the deficit by hundreds of billions of dollars. That it doesn't add costs. It actually reduces cost.
The fact is that health care costs across the country are too high and have been getting too high. And by sharing the -- the exposure, if you will, across all of the population, we will see nationally what we've seen here at home in Massachusetts, is that those costs are moderating and going down. So there's going to be a good, in that respect, in that fiscal or financial respect as well.
I think that the Republicans have tried every which way to sort of misrepresent what health care reform is about. Instead of really defending the indefensible which is their position that the -- that the status quo is perfectly fine.
The status quo is not perfectly fine, Piers. We are -- health is a public good. That's what the president is standing for. And that -- and his belief that everyone ought to have access to adequate care. And this is not --
MORGAN: But where -- let me just jump in there, Deval. We're in a -- we're in a curious position here, aren't we, where the public look at this and they go, well, hang on a second, President Obama himself before he was president opposed this. Mitt Romney brought in Romneycare in your state.
PATRICK: Yes. Yes.
MORGAN: And you yourself say that the list of horrors -- the list of horrors he comes up with never materialized. But how do you explain to the public that the president didn't agree with it but now he's saluting it as a great triumph, given that you're trying to attack Mitt Romney for bringing a version of it in your state which apparently has done a lot of good?
PATRICK: Well, the thing that the president didn't agree with is the same thing that I was skeptical of when I was running for governor back in 2005 and 2006. And that's the so-called individual mandate. But I get it. I get the idea. It's a basically, you know, sort of old-fashioned insurance idea which is that you spread the risk as broadly as possible so you bring down the cost for everybody.
And it's been an essential part of the success here in Massachusetts. And I think the president understood that, having seen, of all of the different experiments that are considered and debated in public policy, there's one that's actually been tried. We tried something here in Massachusetts. And we've tried something nationally. And the Supreme Court has affirmed the authority of Congress to try something. And I'm excited about that.
MORGAN: Governor, thank you very much for joining me.
PATRICK: Thanks for having me.
MORGAN: More now on our "Big Story." Rick Santorum has made no secret of his opposition to Obamacare. He said today, quote, "The outcome is a worst of all scenarios."
And the former presidential candidate joins me now on the phone.
Welcome back, Senator, how are you?
RICK SANTORUM (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (via phone): I'm doing well, Piers, how are you?
MORGAN: So I guess you're foaming at the mouth with blind rage, are you?
SANTORUM: Well, how about feeling very, very sad about what this means for our country but frankly very excited that the battle is joined and it will be a battle between now and November and the stakes are very clear. That we now have a system that is going to make every single American dependent in one way or another on the federal government for their health care.
That is something that's antithetical to the reason that we separated from you folks over across the pond. Because we didn't want to be ruled by people who had that kind of control over us. And President Obama feels very comfortable in that elite air that he breathes in the White House of making decisions for everybody. And average Americans are now going to make the decision whether they want that or not.
MORGAN: But you're just referring to my little place across the pond, and of course over there, everybody gets -- entitled to free health care. What is wrong with that in principle?
SANTORUM: Well --
MORGAN: What's wrong with a great country like America --
SANTORUM: -- gets that health care as you all know. I mean there's a big difference (INAUDIBLE) to get health care than actually getting the kind of care that you need when you need it. And we've seen this with socialized medicine not just in the U.K. but in every other place that has tried it.
It is absolutely antithetical to what the principles of our country are all about that we believe in bottom-up solutions to the problems, not top down. Government-run solutions where government is telling everybody what they can't have and what they can't have, and how much they're going to pay for it and -- that you must do it and if you don't the IRS is going to come track you down and trace you down.
This is -- this is not America. This is not what this country was founded and made it great and we're going to have an election all about that in the fall.
MORGAN: Now you described Romneycare in Massachusetts as the model for Obamacare. This is back in February. You said that the base on the very same foundation -- in some respects Governor Romney's plan is even worse. I mean, you just went on to say, he says, Santorum, instead of Romney, but I don't want it on the federal level therefore I'll repeal it. Wow, you said, what a big difference. I'm for government running your life. Only out of the state capital, not the nation's capital.
How awkward is it for you that the guy that won the Republican race and now has to take on Barack Obama, what you sense is a vulnerable area, is the guy that basically inspired the whole plan to start with?
SANTORUM: Well, here's what I know. I know that if Barack Obama is re-elected president, Obamacare will be implemented because he will veto anything that weakens that law. What I also know is that Governor Romney has given a pledge that he will sign a bill to repeal Obamacare and will do whatever he can to weaken the law.
So that's the clear choice for me. The issues that I was bringing up during the campaign were really campaign issues. Not issues as to, you know, what would happen if Governor Romney actually got elected president or not. I think he's made it very clear that what he wants to accomplish is to repeal Obamacare. Trust me, we will hold him at that word. And I believe that he will keep it.
MORGAN: Yes, but here's the problem. You know, he's the guy that came up with the brilliant answer to health care problems in Massachusetts. A big state in America. And it was called a mandate. And then the moment Barack Obama comes up with exactly the same idea, he slams it as disgraceful and the end of the world as we know it.
You can't really sustain that as a credible position, can you? Shouldn't Mitt Romney just come out and say, you know what, this is basically what I brought in to Massachusetts, and it kind of worked, I salute you, Mr. President?
SANTORUM: Well, I think -- I think what you're seeing is it hasn't worked in Massachusetts. Health care costs in Massachusetts are number one in the country. They're highest in the country. They have a series of problems with people who decide to take the tax, in other words, pay the fine, instead of buying insurance, because it's actually cheaper, particularly younger and healthier people who -- who are dropping out of the health care system.
It doesn't work. What does work is free people, free markets, bottom-up solutions. That's what makes America great. That's what makes us different from everybody in the world.
MORGAN: OK, OK, final --
SANTORUM: And that's what Mitt Romney --
MORGAN: A final question. Final question. If it was such a catastrophic disaster in Massachusetts, Romneycare, why should we elect him as the president of the United States if he on this fundamental point got it all so horribly wrong?
SANTORUM: Well, I would just say this. What he -- what he has said is that they did some things right, they did some things wrong. And he's learned from those mistakes. I'm using his language. And that he is -- he has made it very clear that this is something that he would oppose. That he would repeal. And let me assure you that Republicans in the House and Senate will be champing at the bit to do just that if we're successful in November.
MORGAN: Final question and quickly if you don't mind, Senator.
MORGAN: Do you believe this will re-energize the Tea Party who have been on the back burner a bit for a few months? Do you think this is exactly the kind of issue that will galvanize and back into the action?
SANTORUM: I don't -- I don't think there's any question. I mean, I feel frankly very re-energized. I was stunned by the decision. Very disappointed in Chief Justice Roberts who just pulled this out of thin air in an attempt to understand the attempt to try not to inject himself into the political realm but going and rewriting the health care bill which is what he did in this decision is more than injecting himself, it was a -- it was a folly of a mistake.
And it needs to be corrected at the -- at the voting booth. And I think people will be energized to do just that.
MORGAN: Senator, always good to talk to you, thank you very much.
SANTORUM: My pleasure, Piers, thank you.
MORGAN: Patrick Kennedy is a former congressman. A health care activist. And of course the son of the late Senator Ted Kennedy who call universal health care the cause of his life. Listen to what House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said today about the senator.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: We called it the great unfinished business of our country, of our society. I knew that when he left us, he would go to heaven and help pass the bill and now I knew he was (INAUDIBLE) at work until this decision came down, inspiring one way or another. And now he can rest in peace.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: I'm joined now by Patrick Kennedy.
Patrick, how do you think your father would have felt today?
PATRICK KENNEDY, SEN. TED KENNEDY'S SON: Well, I think he would have been thrilled that not just members of Congress have guaranteed health care anymore but that all the constituents that elected them now have access to health care that members of Congress are fully happy to have.
My father saw it as simply a matter hypocrisy that these people who are criticizing health care take government funded health care themselves. And he just thought it was a matter of fairness. And he thought it was a moral issue. It was about whether we wanted to treat others the way we ourselves would want to be treated. And I recall that what made him really so passionate about this was when my brother Ted had bone cancer and my father and mother had to worry about whether he was going to survive.
But they didn't have to worry about whether they could pay for him to get the health care he needed. But they saw other families go through the heartache of not only hoping that their loved one got better but they were worried about being bankrupted in the process. And I think that's what rubbed my father so against his sense of compassion and social justice and it's what fueled his effort to fight for this, for his whole lifetime.
And keep in mind, Piers, he worked with Senator Hatch. Of course he did work with then Governor Romney in Massachusetts. He was always anxious to work across party lines because he really felt this was in the best interest of the nation. And I think that it is in the best interest of the nation, as much as it's a polarizing issue right now as Governor Patrick said earlier.
I think everybody will benefit because you get the efficiencies of having everybody in the system, in which case you can really implement prevention and population-based health care which today we don't have a health care system. We have a sick care system which means people only get care when they get sick. And that's not really both cost effective. And it's certainly not humane if we -- if we look at the system as it is today.
MORGAN: Were you shocked that Justice Roberts, Chief Justice Roberts, was the deciding vote today?
KENNEDY: I was shocked that he was just the deciding vote. And that Kennedy also didn't join him. It was obviously something that was a lot of commentary. But process is what it is. At the end of the day, I think it's individual families who get stuck in jobs. Who don't want to change jobs because they're worried about losing their health care. Or who are really on the margins. Who are trying to get health insurance but can't because of a pre-existing condition.
All of those families are going to sleep a little better. Knowing that in the future this is one less worry. Now I understand, you know, my former colleague, Rick Santorum, before me said, that you know people are going to be -- you know, have this worry about government-run this. Well, I mean, it was the insurance industry that's unregulated that was running people's health care lives before.
And I don't know how many people feel really good about HMOs. That as much as they paid for their premiums whenever they needed health care, insurance companies business model was to say no. And I think that's the real issue here. It's not a question of, you know, whether people are going to pay because they're paying already for health premiums. And those health premiums are going up.
What this is about is let's get people the coverage that they're paying for. And right now, it's about government stepping in and making sure that insurance companies aren't going to continue to profit off of other people's misfortune. And when they need health care, denying them that health care because that's how they make a profit.
I salute the president for standing up for the -- really, the largest mass of American people who, you know -- who are worried every day about getting sick because they're worried about it bankrupting them. President Obama didn't have to worry about health care. My dad never had to worry about health care. Mitt Romney doesn't have to worry about health care. It's the average American who's worried because they're worried about a catastrophic illness putting them in the poor house.
And I think that's not American. And I think the Supreme Court upheld really the truest vision of what is in the best interest of this country today.
MORGAN: Patrick Kennedy, thank you very much indeed.
Coming up, three people who know the Supreme Court better than just about anybody else. What they think happened behind closed doors.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: The highest court in the land has now spoken. We will continue to implement this law. And we'll work together to improve on it where we can. But what we won't do, what the country can't afford to do, is refight the political battles of two years ago or go back to the way things were.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Now more on our "Big Story." President Obama's big victory on health care. Joining me now is Tom Goldstein who's argued more than two dozen case before the Supreme Court and publishes SCOTUSblog. And David Rivkin who represented the 26 states that challenged Obamacare. And Jonathan Turley, professor of law at George Washington University.
Welcome to you all. Let's start with you, Dave Rivkin. You must have been pretty shocked today, weren't you, by what happened?
DAVID RIVKIN, LAWYER FOR STATES THAT CHALLENGED OBAMACARE: I was -- I was surprised. I think it's useful to point out that the majority of the court actually overturned the statute as written by Congress. What they've done is rewrote the statute in two key respects and upheld their own product. So it has both for good parts. It definitively struck down the legal theories, the constitutional theories, that were so dangerous. And harmful to our constitutional structure namely Commerce Clause and necessary and proper colossus steroids.
What unfortunately the court has done after that is recast, rewrite individual mandate as a tax. And rewrite the Medicaid provision as somehow giving states choice. So it's a mixed bag and I was surprised indeed but it has a lot of good things for us. And certainly not a victory for the Obama administration.
MORGAN: And Tom Goldstein, would you go along with that? I mean it seemed to me that the media were all caught pretty well by surprise. Just went against the perceived wisdom. And there was a kind of reframing by the Supreme Court of the entire debate because the Obama administration had never really pushed, look, this is going to be a tax.
How do you think this is all going to play out now?
TOM GOLDSTEIN, PUBLISHER, SCOTUSBLOG.COM: Well, on the bottom line, people felt that the statute was in trouble because the oral argument seemed to go badly for the Obama administration. So that was the shock. And that is that a majority of the Supreme Court voted to uphold the statute. And it's very hard to cast this as a loss for the Obama administration. All the critical pieces of the statute are constitutional and upheld.
Now David is absolutely right. That there's some pieces to a tool kit that conservatives can use in later decisions. And there are limitations here on excesses by Congress that could be significant. But for today and for the next several years, this is just across the board win nearly.
MORGAN: Jonathan Turley, as a professor of law on the panel tonight, from a legal perspective purely, do you think the Supreme Court acted correctly?
JONATHAN TURLEY, PROFESSOR OF LAW, GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY: Well, I have mixed feelings about it quite frankly. I favor national health care. But I shared the views, the concerns over federalism. I'm a big supporter of federalism. And I've a column coming out in the morning in "USA Today" saying that I felt this opinion did great harm to federalism. Because what happened is that Chief Justice Roberts really uplifted federalism. He said that you can't base this law on the Commerce Clause. And in that sense people like David were vindicated. But then he said, you can do all of that under the tax authority. And what that does in my view is it reduces federalism to a type of line. It's very impressive the way that Chief Justice Roberts described it. But then he showed how you can just get around it.
But more importantly, when you look at the tax power, it lacks all the limiting principles that was so -- that were so obviously missing for federalism. And so some of us were left scratching our head of, all right, so what's the limiting principle again on the tax issue? He says that the federal government can use this functional approach of the court and can use taxes, even simply to influence the conduct of citizens.
That's pretty breathtaking. And so for people who are advocates of federalism, there's a sense of betrayal here. This sort of Brutus moment that this was a friend who may have harped federalism significantly.
MORGAN: And David Rivkin, it's an interesting, isn't it? I mean is it -- is what we've seen today, led by Chief Justice Roberts, is it a form of judicial activism do you think?
RIVKIN: It is a form of judicial activism. Again, I think all three of us agree the Chief Justice rewrote the statute to save it again. The statute that I've held was not the statute that Congress passed. But I'm more optimistic than my good friend Jonathan for a simple reason. There are limited principles associated with the tax power. Let me in principle, number one, from now on, no politician who enacts or tries to enact a mandate accompanied by this kind of a penalty will be able to maintain as President Obama -- then Speaker Pelosi and Harry Reid.
But this is not a tax. I mean unless people experience amnesia, they would laugh. So these tremendous political cost, Piers, associated with word "Tax," why do you think the Obama administration did not pass it as the tax? Which they could have done.
RIVKIN: All three of us agree that they could have written a true tax. Because they pay a high political price. So from now on that political price will be paid.
Second of all, there are limiting principles associated with the tax provisions. They have to originate in the House and I'm not convinced that there would not be a future case where this kind of tax would be struck as being a direct tax, just not a portion. The court here, the court majority kind of brushes by this. But this is by no means resolved.
MORGAN: OK. For now I have leave it. Thank you all very much. David Rivkin, Tom Goldstein, Jonathan Turley. I appreciate you joining me. Next, the president won the battle but will he lose the war when it comes to re-election? Some opinions on both sides of that question. We'll battle it our when we come back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Whatever the politic, today's decision was a victory for people all over this country, whose lives will be more secure because of this law and the Supreme Court's decision to uphold it.
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Our mission is clear. If we want to get rid of Obamacare, we're going to have to replace President Obama. My mission is to make sure we do exactly that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: The Supreme Court decision was the good news for the president today. But in a clear case of you win some, you lose some, just a few hours later, Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt by the House over the Fast and Furious gun running sting. So what does all this mean in the race for the White House?
Here to talk about it are Ryan Lizza, CNN contributor, Washington correspondent for "the New Yorker." Katie Pavlich, news editor for Townhall and the author of "Fast and Furious, Barack Obama's Bloodiest Scandal and the Shameless Cover Up," and Charles Blow, the op-ed columnist for the "New York Times."
Welcome to you all. Ryan Lizz, let me start with you. You've heard all the people tonight giving their views. What is your opinion of who's the real winner and who's the lose today?
RYAN LIZZA, "THE NEW YORKER": Well, I think in situations like this, you probably don't want to get too cute and counterintuitive. One of the candidates running for president wanted the Supreme Court to uphold this law. One did not. So to me the clear winner is Obama and his administration. This is obviously the most significant thing he's done in his first 3.5 years.
And I don't read much into the opinion that even, you know, conservative legal types should be cheered by. It seems that whatever the court took away with the Commerce Clause, they gave back with Roberts' interpretation of the taxing authority. And I don't really see any future Obama or Democratic policies that would be affected or circumscribed by the way the Commerce Clause was interpreted.
I think it's a pretty significant victory for Obama. One caveat, obviously the Romney campaign just got a jolt of excitement and enthusiasm. He has now defined this election as not just about the economy but about repealing Obamacare if he's elected. I think that matters for something. The fact that conservatives are rallying behind Romney anew is probably a good thing for him. MORGAN: Yeah, I mean, Katie Pavlich, there's no doubt that's happening, because the Romney campaign said today they raised 2.7 million, maybe as I've been speaking going to 2.8, 2.9 million dollars since this happened this morning. Clearly, the right is being excited by this and feels this is going to give them momentum to have a new vote winning strategy based on repealing this.
KATIE PAVLICH, NEWS EDITOR, TOWNHALL.COM: I think so. But let's not forget that the issue of Obamacare, although it's a win for President Obama today in the short term, this wasn't a partisan thing. It wasn't just Republicans who didn't like Obamacare. Independents, especially in swing states, wanted the entire bill repealed.
So although the Supreme Court disagreed with them on that, this does give them an alternative to President Obama in saying that President Romney -- on his first day, he said he's going to repeal this. And I don't want to be stuck with President Obama in the second term who has given me a bill that I didn't want in the first place, and that now is a permanent thing, unless we have a new president.
Not to mention, let's go back to the 2010 midterm elections, and the Tea Party had a huge role in getting Republicans 60 seats. What was the key topic in that election? It was Obamacare. So people -- I heard you mention it in the beginning of your show that the Tea Party's kind of been dormant. Well, that's not true. They had a huge role in the Wisconsin recall.
Now that they have a new and bigger ground game, you can expect to see some of the results in November, especially with the Senate, when it comes to the Tea Party taking action on this.
MORGAN: Charles Blow, it's clearly a good day for Barack Obama, probably a day he wasn't expecting. But put it into context here. The fact that the Republicans are raising so much money on the back of this, the fact that clearly their base is getting rallied, does that really matter? Or is what happened today one of the reasons that so many people voted for Barack Obama in the first place?
CHARLES BLOW, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": Absolutely. I think the last part of your question is exactly the right way. This is a huge win for Barack Obama. You can't cut this any other way than that. Nothing succeeds in America like success. And he has succeeded not only in passing this law, but in defending it in court.
The Republican establishment has been trying for some time now to try to cast Barack Obama as delegitimate in some way. This was a big part of that, that he had overreached, that he had gone beyond the law and the Constitution. And what today's ruling says is that he has not overreached, that this is well within the confines of the Constitution.
This is not a president who is delegitimizing the American structure, that he is, in fact, working within the confines of the Constitution to improve the country, and in this particular case by making us healthier as a whole. I think that part keeps getting lost in this, which is that, you know, we can't be a competitive force in the world unless we are better educated and healthier than we are now.
And the biggest of the population, the parts that are going the fastest are the part that are most likely not to be covered by health insurance. What this does is try to rectify that, take some steps towards rectifying that. That is huge for Barack Obama, both in historical terms and also in the short term. When we talk about, you know, most of the country doesn't like -- would like to repeal the health care act or don't like it, what those polls also include are a lot of people who think the health care act should have actually gone further than it went.
They are not necessarily saying we think it went too far. Every time someone mixes those two things up, they're being very disingenuous and playing around with numbers.
LIZZA: Piers, let me just add one thing --
MORGAN: Charles, let me just hold you all there. Take a short break. I can actually see Katie's lips pursing in fury. When we come back after the break, I want to ask you, Katie, why.
MORGAN: Back with me to talk more about health care is Ryan Lizza, Katie Pavlich and Charles Blow. Katie, I left viewers on a cliffhanger of your pursed lips. You clearly weren't impressed with what Charles Blow was saying. What was rocking your boat there?
PAVLICH: Well, Piers, you mentioned President Obama's promises when he ran for office in the first place. He promised not to raise taxes on anyone making more than 250,000 dollars a year. He broke that promise by implementing Obamacare. We're going to see, as you already mentioned, 500 billion dollars in taxes, the biggest tax hike in American history, 14,000 new IRS agents harassing Americans because they can't keep their plan that President Obama promised they could keep, 11 million Americans who have a plan with their employer now will no longer have a plan.
Youth unemployment is going to go through the roof because employers aren't going to want to hire short-term workers, because they're now required to provide health insurance. So speaking of promises, President Obama has broken more of them than he's kept because of this health care ruling.
MORGAN: OK. Ryan Lizza, what do you think of that?
LIZZA: There's a lot of facts in there. I don't think I could fact check every one of those. Look, I don't think -- I think the one thing the court said today that puts Obama in a little bit of a bind is they have -- they basically said to Congress, look, don't play games. If something's going to be a tax, call it a tax, right? The court has emphasized that this payment that you will now have to make or penalty if you don't have health insurance is indeed a tax.
The problem with that politically, in terms of the Romney campaign coming back very strong on that, is, as we all know, Romney did the same thing in Massachusetts. I was a little surprised earlier, Piers. You had Rick Santorum on there. He did not hold back in just blasting Romney's Massachusetts health care law. So it tells you a little bit that this debate is not as clear as, you know, Romney might want it to be in the general election.
And, frankly, we'll see in the coming weeks if Romney keeps coming back to this or not. Up until today, Republican leaders and Romney specifically didn't really want to talk about anything but the economy for some very good reasons. If Romney's going to win this race, it's going to be on the economy. And I wonder if the Romney campaign stays with this attack on Obama's health care law --
MORGAN: Let's go to -- let me go to Charles Blow. Looks like you're ready to blow appropriately. This is the crux of it, isn't it? The problem for Mitt Romney -- I had Deval Patrick, the governor of Massachusetts, which is the state where Romneycare was brought in, saying actually it's been rather good, the state of Massachusetts. So what Mitt Romney ought to be doing is probably using it as an example of what a good steward he was when he was there and what a good idea it was.
But he's boxed himself into a corner, which Rick Santorum leapt on, which is that the whole thing didn't really work out. He wished he hadn't really done it. Therefore he can attack Obama. It's not a very credible position, is it?
BLOW: I think Mitt Romney at this point has a chair in every corner of the room. He's boxed himself into every possible corner on every possible issue. And Romneycare is only one of those issues. And getting back to the people who may -- you know, the idea of taxing people because they do not buy into the health care, the people who don't have health insurance are the strongest of Obama's supporters. These are the poorest people in America. The large segment of them are a minorities in America. A large segment of them are young people in America.
If you look at any poll, these are the people who have the strongest levels of support for Barack Obama. So it is so disingenuous for people who are on the right, who are not even in this category, to then throw up their hands in a huff and say, oh, this is a tax. This is a tax that they're not even going to have to pay. You're not even subject to this.
The idea that you are now championing for these people, the very people who all of the Republican policies basically take a knock at, is ridiculous.
MORGAN: Katie, you are ridiculous apparently.
PAVLICH: I'm ridiculous and disingenuous, right? Look, this is a tax. And considering only 53 percent of people in this country pay a federal income tax and now are going to be paying into this Obamacare tax, which you just called not a tax.
BLOW: Who said that -- no, no --
PAVLICH: You said that. Yes, you did. You said it's not a tax.
BLOW: What we won't be doing is putting words into somebody else's mouth.
PAVLICH: You said this was --
BLOW: Let's just start back from the truth, and then you can go and say whatever you want to say.
PAVLICH: You said this was not a tax. The Supreme Court ruled today that it was.
BLOW: Who said it wasn't a tax? I never said it wasn't a tax. Please --
PAVLICH: Not to mention --
BLOW: The truth will set you free --
PAVLICH: OK, I will talk to you about the facts if you stop interrupting me.
BLOW: No, if you say a fact, you can say that. But if you try to put words in my mouth, that's not going to work.
PAVLICH: The Supreme Court said today also that states can opt out of certain Medicaid plans, which cover the people who you're discussing. So if you really want to talk about it, the Supreme Court ruled on that. The states don't have to comply with these federal standard of Medicaid without the federal government, you know, intimidating them, saying they're no longer going to get coverage.
Now, going back to point, what you made, that Republicans shouldn't be championing health care and all of this for minorities and poor people --
BLOW: I didn't say they shouldn't be.
PAVLICH: The way you do that is not through the --
BLOW: I didn't say that --
PAVLICH: Stop interrupting meg.
BLOW: No, I'm not going to do that, because you're not going to say things that are not true on the air. You're not going to say things that are not true on the air, and attribute them to me, and expect me to stay silently by --
PAVLICH: I'm not speaking to you. I'm speaking to people listening. I'm not talking to you, Mr. Blow.
BLOW: Not going to happen.
PAVLICH: Back to the point of -- if you don't do this through the government, we've already seen our premiums rise, which affects young people. It affects minorities. And the people who are just on the bubble of being able to get health care in the first place can no longer afford it. This costs a lot of money. It doesn't decrease costs. For this to be called the Affordable Care Act is, in your words, disingenuous.
BLOW: No, you're disingenuous.
MORGAN: Listen, I'm afraid that Chief Justice Morgan is going to have to rule at this stage that we've run out of time. I rather like the dynamic we're creating tonight between the various campaigners. I'm sure we'll have you both back, and you Ryan maybe to act as some kind of moderator. But thank you for a lively debate, all three of you.
BLOW: Thank you, piers.
MORGAN: Exactly. Thank you, all, very much. Appreciate it. Next, you heard what Rielle Hunter told me last night. She said that she thought John Edwards was temporarily insane. I'll ask top doctors how that sounds to them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Are you sorry for what you did to her?
RIELLE HUNTER, HAD AFFAIR WITH JOHN EDWARDS: I am sorry. I'm absolutely sorry for my part in the relationship, having an affair, any pain it caused anyone, including Elizabeth. Absolutely.
MORGAN: If she were still alive, would you say to her, I'm sorry?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Rielle Hunter from my interview last night. She was John Edwards' mistress. You heard her apologize for the hurt she caused to his ex-wife, the late Elizabeth Edwards and his family. But does she mean it? With me is Dr. Robi Ludwig, a psychotherapist, and Dr. Michelle Golland, a psychologist.
Welcome to you both. Let's start with you, Dr. Michelle. What do you make of the interview? Pretty extraordinary, wasn't it?
DR. MICHELLE GOLLAND, PSYCHOLOGIST: Yeah, it was. I think she really didn't like you much. And I think part of it was because she is about seduction. And she couldn't really seduce you I think in that interview. And what I don't get is that -- and I think what no one sees, there's no humility. There's no humbleness over having what she's gone through --
MORGAN: There was a curious, I thought, reluctance on her part to accept the bleeding obvious, which is even if you are the single person starting an affair with a famous married politician, there's still a sense of responsibility that goes with that. You're still having an affair with a married guy. It wasn't a moral judgment, so much as surely you must see that you have some responsibility.
MORGAN: But she didn't want to have any.
GOLLAND: That's narcissism. Not wanting to take any spot. Not wanting anything unclean.
MORGAN: They were both narcissists?
GOLLAND: I would say so very much.
MORGAN: Let me bring in Robi Ludwig. What did you make of it? Because I think a lot of women have said to me they found her pretty disagreeable and unwilling to take responsibility. Men were slightly more sympathetic, I guess.
DR. ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Maybe men are because she's attractive. But clearly, she's very angry. She's defensive. She makes excuses, both for herself and for John Edwards. And she doesn't really feel sorry at all for what happened. She's sorry she's misunderstood. She's sorry that she that is unpopular. And she's angry about it.
She doesn't believe that what she did was wrong because for her it was something good; it led to something good. And that's why people don't like her, because she isn't taking responsibility for the pain that she caused. It's not believable, but she's obvious about what she is.
MORGAN: Let's play a clip. This is one of the more remarkable moments last night, when she was discussing birth control. Let's watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Whose idea was it not to use birth control?
HUNTER: We are both adults. We didn't use birth control.
HUNTER: We were in love.
MORGAN: What's that got to do with it? Guy is going to be president. Or he wants to be.
MORGAN: Just seems extraordinary, these little details. What were you both thinking?
HUNTER: We weren't.
MORGAN: At all. HUNTER: Clearly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: I found that breathtaking. The idea that the explanation -- if the explanation had been, we didn't use birth control because we were both teenagers, you kind of believe it. The fact that the excuse was, we're adults --
GOLLAND: I have to tell you, I'm a relationship expert. I deal with parents even, and affairs, a lot of affairs within couples. You hit it on the head. It -- that was an immature young girl. And that's also what John Edwards was. He was an immature young adolescent man in that affair.
LUDWIG: I completely agree.
MORGAN: Would you agree with that?
LUDWIG: Absolutely agree. And I will question whether she was in love or even John Edwards was in love. They were in lust and they were selfish. They were acting like teenagers because they were mentally teenagers. They weren't thinking. And here is another thought, perhaps she liked the idea of getting pregnant. She wanted something that basically made the statement that their relationship was real and valid. She might have liked the idea, on some level.
MORGAN: One of the things that certainly came through is -- I've been informed as a matter of fact that the reason that they split up in the last few days was the family -- the kids of John Edwards, especially his older daughter, in her 30s, they had no idea about half of the affairs that were going to be revealed in this book, casting new aspersions on their father, which is a pretty shocking thing to do, actually, given there were three children there, grieving their mother. Don't you think?
GOLLAND: Yes, but what about John Edwards not coming all the way clean to his kids? Because, you know what? That's the problem with a narcissist. They think they can control it. She thinks she can control the media.
MORGAN: Yeah, I think --
GOLLAND: You don't feed the beast a little bit at a time. They're going to bite your head off.
MORGAN: It was an extraordinary encounter. Thank you both very much, Robi Ludwig and Michelle Golland. I appreciate your expert view. Kind of confirms my amateur view. So that's always a relief. Thank you both.
Coming next, Only in America has the perfect way to prevent a spouse from cheating. So, Rielle, if you are watching, this one's for you. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
MORGAN: For tonight's Only in America, a sure fire way to stay faithful. More than 20 percent of all married American men will commit adultery. And so we saw from my extraordinary interview with John Edwards mistress, Rielle hunter last night, it can have devastating consequences, not least for one's sanity.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HUNTER: I don't think he was in his right mind when he did that. He was all over the place. He was temporarily insane.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Adultery cost Edwards his presidential run, his marriage, his reputation, very nearly his liberty. It didn't play out that well for miss Hunter, either.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: How do you think your public perception is right now?
HUNTER: Destroyer, villain, evil, basher, all of that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: But help is on hand for all potential adulterers in the form of this cunning new device, the anti-cheating ring. It's a normal wedding band, except there's an engraving on the inside that when it is slipped on leaves an imprint. The imprint reads simply, "I'm married." So even if the guy takes off the ring and claims he's single, his wedding finger won't be able to sustain the lie.
The ring is from the website Cheeky.com. It's made of strengthened titanium, has a lifetime guarantee, and costs just 550 dollars, which given the cost to john Edwards of his adultery, seems an absolute bargain.
That's all for us tonight. AC 360 starts now.