MSNBC's Sharpton: Tea Party 'Don't Care If They Ruin the Country' to Repeal Dem Programs

On Monday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton charged that the Tea Party has a "radical agenda," and, after guest Joan Walsh of Salon accused Republicans of wanting to "repeal the 20th century," the PolitisNation host accused the GOP of not caring if they "ruin" the country. Sharpton:

No, they want to eradicate the Great Society, the New Deal, all of that. And they're digging in and they don't care if they ruin the country to do it.

Referring to the possibility of a government shutdown over ObamaCare, Sharpton introduced a clip of President Obama. Sharpton:

And it's not just other Republicans attacking the Tea Party's radical agenda; 59 percent of Americans say they oppose a plan to shut down the government and stop paying the nation's bills in order to defund the new health care law. Just 19 percent support the idea. President Obama knows it, and he's ready to fight for it.

The MSNBC host continued:

The clock is ticking. The government shuts down in seven days. The Senate will take a crucial vote to avoid that on Wednesday. But Tea Party lawmakers are playing games in Washington. In order to attack this President and take away health care from millions of people, they will not stop.

Sharpton brought aboard Salon's Walsh and Washington Democratic Rep. Jim McDermott as guests, and, after McDermott declared that "I'm afraid" there will be a government shutdown, the MSNBC host responded:

Now, Joan, that's my fear. And I was struck by the President's statement that we played. That you really, to make an ideological point and a partisan point, you're willing to, for the first time in the history of this country, default the country to stop people, 20 million Americans from getting health care. I mean, are we really at that point where we're so political and so ideological in this country and hate this President so in some of the Tea Party members, that they will default the country just top stop it?

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Monday, September 23, PoliticsNation on MSNBC:

AL SHARPTON: And it's not just other Republicans attacking the Tea Party's radical agenda; 59 percent of Americans say they oppose a plan to shut down the government and stop paying the nation's bills in order to defund the new health care law. Just 19 percent support the idea. President Obama knows it, and he's ready to fight for it.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: This is an interesting thing to ponder. That your top agenda is making sure 20 million people don't have health insurance. And you'd be willing to shut down the government and potentially default for the first time in United States history because it bothers you so much that we're actually going to make sure that everybody has affordable health care.

Well, let me say as clearly as I can, it is not going to happen. We have come too far. We've overcome far darker threats than those. We will not negotiate over whether or not America should keep its word and meet its obligations. We're not going to allow anyone to inflict economic pain on millions of our own people just to make an ideological point. And those folks are going to get some health care in this country. We've been waiting 50 years for it.

SHARPTON: The clock is ticking. The government shuts down in seven days. The Senate will take a crucial vote to avoid that on Wednesday. But Tea Party lawmakers are playing games in Washington. In order to attack this President and take away health care from millions of people, they will not stop.

Joining me now is Congressman Jim McDermott, Democrat from Washington and Joan Walsh. ... Congressman, let me go to you first. The House has passed a bill defunding ObamaCare. What will the Senate do now?

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT (D-WA): Throw it in the waste basket. They're not going to respond to that kind of thing. They're going to pass a budget resolution to continue the funding of the government, send it back to us without that on it. And it is going to be voted on in the House. The House will have to make their decision sometime later this week as to whether they really want to shut the government down or not. I'm afraid they're going to do it.

SHARPTON: Now, Joan, that's my fear. And I was struck by the President's statement that we played. That you really, to make an ideological point and a partisan point, you're willing to, for the first time in the history of this country, default the country to stop people, 20 million Americans from getting health care. I mean, are we really at that point where we're so political and so ideological in this country and hate this President so in some of the Tea Party members, that they will default the country just top stop it?

(...)

JOAN WALSH, SALON.COM: They want to repeal ObamaCare. They want to repeal the 21st century. They want to go back and repeal the 20th century. They`re gunning for Social Security and Medicare and New Deal protections of workers. They really want to send us back to a day when women were in the kitchen, where people, where workers didn't have protections, where there were no wage protections, and, of course, there was no guaranteed health insurance.

SHARPTON: No, they want to eradicate the Great Society, the New Deal, all of that. And they're digging in and they don't care if they ruin the country to do it.