Hardball with Chris Matthews, 12/27/12, 7:00 PM ET

Matthews: I have high hopes for Obama's second term

Chris Matthews talks about why he has high hopes for President Obama's second term, and the issues he will have to tackle head on at the start of the new year.

I have high hopes for Obama’s second term

Updated

Let me finish tonight with this.

I have high hopes for President Obama’s second term. I have low hopes for the Republican opposition in Congress.

I have rising hopes for the old, reasonable Republican party out there in the real world—the party that resides in the Eastern big states and actually deals with the real work of being big-state governor, for example.

So here we go. We gotta do something about guns, especially keeping guns from dangerous people. We have to do something about Iran. (Yes, we have to, and I’m no hawk.) And we have to do something about immigration. We need to do what any country in the world has to do: decide who comes into the country, decide the terms of their staying. We need to do it in an American, progressive way, but we have to do it. Right now, our approach to immigration is a joke. We exploit people economically. We exploit the issue for political purposes. We don’t give people dignity and we need to do that most of all.

And we got to do something about the rising percentage of our national economy that is being taken up by the cost of our unfunded government programs. We need to find a way to contain the rising cost of health care because that is the number one cause of our fiscal and debt problem and it’s not going away.

So, it looks like 2013 is going to be real. It’s going to deal with issues of peace and war, issues of national identity, issues of personal security, especially for our young. Think it’s not important at your own peril. Say it, and you’re part of the problem.

I have high hopes for Obama's second term

Updated