Chris Matthews thinks the Republican Party's Pledge to America is all part of a ploy to hide the more "radical" ideas of their party as he, on Thursday's Hardball, announced that the GOP "manifesto" could be "the biggest cover up since Watergate." Matthews went on to speculate that with the Pledge, the Republican members of Congress were doing their best to "disguise the much more serious, more radical proposals" of the Tea Party. The suspicious Matthews then went on to tally the allegedly secret agenda of the GOP that was "hidden under the table." [audio available here]
The following Matthews rants were aired on the September 23 edition of Hardball:
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Plus House Republicans unveil their Pledge to America today and it could be the biggest cover up since Watergate. Their manifesto showcases all the predictable soft sell proposals you'd expect from establishment Republicans but goes radio silent on the more radical ideas of their party. The wild stuff, you know, about changing the Constitution. And make no mistake, the fringe on the right will have a strong voice if Republicans win control of the Congress.
MATTHEWS: Coming up, the Republican Party unveils its so-called Pledge to America and it may be just the biggest political cover up since Watergate. It's a modest plan full of familiar proposals. You know the good stuff - cut taxes, cut spending, but the big question is, does it really hide or disguise the much more serious, more radical proposals that the Republicans Party has, that it has in mind. The Tea Party stuff we hear about all the time. How come that's not on the paper? Let's talk about what's being covered over, in this pledge. You're watching Hardball, only on MSNBC.
MATTHEWS: Let's take a look at what's on the paper. Here are some of the points in the pledge, on paper. On tax cuts it calls for making the Bush tax cuts permanent. No surprise there. On business tax cuts it calls for giving small businesses a deduction equal to 20 percent of their business income. It calls for a cap on new government spending. For the repeal of the health care bill. Repeal! And fully funding, I don't know where this came from, missile defense. Full funding of missile defense. There's an odd one for ya...Here's what I think is being hidden under the table. Here's what Republicans are, actually been talking about during this campaign. Changing the 14th Amendment to that guarantees citizenship to people in this country. Let's listen to somebody making that proposal. It's not on the paper here.
SEN. LINDSAY GRAHAM: People come here to have babies. They come here to drop a child. It's called drop and leave.
MATTHEWS: And Republicans are talking about actions that would shut down government if they take control of Congress. Let's listen again.
NEWT GINGRICH: Stage one of the end of Obama-ism will be a new Republican Congress in January that simply refuses to fund any of the radical efforts.
MATTHEWS: Shut down. Some talk about repealing the 17th Amendment, which allows for direct election of U.S. senators. They're also talking about privatizing Social Security, which is addressed in a number of places, but particularly in Republican Congressman Paul Ryan's so-called Road Map to America's Future. It seems to me, Todd Harris, that a lot of the nice stuff is put on this paper here, but the stuff we're hearing out at the meetings, the Tea Party meetings, the more radical voices have been muffled here.