On last night’s show, Rachel Maddow picked a part an email she received from Sen. Burr’s office. In essence it was a complaint alleging Rachel made misleading comments about Burr on her show. Burr’s office took issue with previous comments regarding his former job as a “lawnmower salesman”, his blocking of the Duckworth nomination and Burr’s brilliant, “run on the bank” portion of a speech given at a Henderson County Chamber of Commerce. If the email was intended to be a battle of wits, Burr clearly came unarmed, Rachel took “Senator Genuis” to task, Amen and Hallelujah. Watch for yourself (Video courtesy of FireDogLake)
Below is the transcript of Rachel’s discussion with David Young, chairman of the North Carolina Democratic Party. The segment focused on “Senator Genuis'” suggestion his wife make a run on the bank. The fact that Burr used these words of wisdom during a Chamber of Commerce meeting only adds to its insanity.
Anyone who‘s seen “It‘s a Wonderful Life” knows what happens when people lose confidence in the banks, right? That‘s what you call “a run on the banks,” which everyone agrees is a very bad thing, both for the bank that‘s being run on and for the people who are making the run on that bank.
Keep that in mind as you hear this story about the unfolding of the financial crisis last fall as it was first becoming clear to the U.S. Government, as it was related by a U.S. senator to a local chamber of commerce this week. Quote, “On Friday night, I called my wife and I said, ‘Brooke, I‘m not coming home this weekend. I will call you on Monday.
Tonight, I want you to go to the ATM machine, and I want to you draw out everything that it will let you take, and I want to you go tomorrow, and I want to you go on Sunday.‘”
OK. First of all, she can‘t just go in and talk to a teller.
Second of all, the FDIC insures your freaking deposit, senator genius. Third of all, you think it‘s worth making a “run on the bank” anyway because of what you‘ve learned in Washington about what‘s going on in the financial sector but you don‘t tell your constituents. You instead just use that information you‘ve got because of your position as a senator to protect your own family?
And fourth, what kind of a genius admits to having done this and suggesting a “run on the banks” in public? What kind of a genius? A genius named United States senator from North Carolina Richard Burr, that‘s who. If you‘ve never heard of him, it‘s probably because he‘s vying with the likes of Senators Barrasso and Crapo to be the most anonymous member of the United States Senate.
If you have heard of him, it‘s probably because of his recent inexplicable and still unexplained decision to block the nomination of celebrated veterans advocate Tammy Duckworth to the Veterans Administration. Yep. He‘s the same guy.
What do you get when you combine anonymity with a quixotic stand against a war hero with the great idea of a run on the banks? In Sen. Richard Burr‘s case you get an approval rating of about 35 percent, roughly on par with the approval rating for junk mail, aluminum bats and cold sores.
If little-known Sen. Burr is trying to get famous, it may actually be working, but probably not the way he intended.
Joining us now, David Young who is the chairman of the North Carolina Democratic Party. Mr. Young, thank you very much for coming on the show tonight.
DAVID YOUNG, CHAIRMAN OF THE NORTH CAROLINA DEMOCRATIC PARTY: Rachel,
thank you so much for having me.
MADDOW: You can disavow the cold sore thing. I‘m sorry to have done that in your presence. You didn‘t know I was going to say that. I‘ll just leave it at that.
I have to ask you – has your party‘s 2010 Senate campaign strategy just presented itself as it‘s going to be?
YOUNG: I think –
MADDOW: Vote against bank run Burr?
YOUNG: Exactly. I think you‘ve – he‘s really helped frame our case. I mean, I was shocked today, shocked at the selfishness of somebody who would use insider information, insider information that he got in Washington and then try to do something to enrich himself while all – basically all his constituents would lose money under that scenario.
I mean, it was just beyond selfish, beyond shocking. And a U.S. senator, somebody we trust, somebody we voted in, in North Carolina to sit up there to serve us. You know, that‘s – we‘ve got a great campaign started right now for 2010.
MADDOW: So selfish and shocking. I haveto ask you if another “S” adjective applies, which would be “stupid.” I mean, one might assume – he‘s been involved in making federal law for a very long time, both in the House and the Senate. You would think that he would know that his deposit would be insured by the FDIC. This doesn‘t apply to some sort of basic misunderstanding about how government works, how the financial system works, doesn‘t it?
YOUNG: Right. And there‘s a limit on how much you can get out of your ATM anyway. And I‘m not sure how all that was going to work, but just the fact that you‘re out telling and bragging about the fact that you called your wife and said, “Look, honey, this may affect me, much less all the citizens in my state, but let‘s take care of ourselves first. Go out and get that money for us.”
MADDOW: Just unbelievable. David, the other occasion that I have found to talk about Sen. Burr on this show was when he decided to delay Tammy Duckworth‘s nomination to the Veteran‘s Affairs Administration. And that obviously upset a lot of veterans groups. It upset me, which I was quite open about on the show.
There are so many veterans in North Carolina. I have to ask what you think Sen. Burr might have been up to by picking that particular fight.
YOUNG: I could say I have no idea. I mean, North Carolina has Ft. Bragg. We‘ve got a huge veteran influence here. We send more troops to Iraq than any other state. We value, revere our veterans and our military in North Carolina. And why stand up to somebody who‘s a decorated veteran? You know, I can‘t explain it.
MADDOW: What explains how Sen. Burr got this job in the first place? I understand – I spent a long time with his biography today, trying to assess it out. I mean, he worked for – I guess it was a lawn mower company as a salesman for a very long time before getting into politics.
And it seems like the rest of the Republican establishment in your state backed off and allowed him to ascend to this Senate seat. Where did he come from and why does he have this job?
YOUNG: He was in Congress for a number of years from a very conservative area of our state. And then a great – picked a great year to run. It was an off-year election. He was very fortunate to run at that time six years ago.
But it‘s way time that we take care of it. I mean, we‘re talking about economic recovery and saying no is not an economic recovery plan.
MADDOW: Well, with him having a 35 percent approval rating this long into his term in the Senate after all those years in the House, I think it‘s quite possible we‘ll be looking at a Democratic senator from the State of North Carolina.
YOUNG: We‘re going to work very hard on that.
MADDOW: David Young, chair of the North Carolina Democratic Party, thank you so much for joining us tonight. I appreciate it.
YOUNG: Thank you very much.