PoliticsNation, Monday, November 14, 2011
Read the transcript from the Monday show
Guests: Lloyd Doggett, Richard Wolffe, Dana Milbank, Matthew Alexander, Nia-Malika Henderson, Maria Teresa Kumar, William Fallon
REV. AL SHARPTON, HOST: Hey, Justices Thomas and Scalia, appearances
SHARPTON (voice-over): Supreme conflict. The Supreme Court agrees to
rule on the Obama health care law just as conservative Justices Thomas and
Scalia go to a fund-raiser for a right-wing legal group. How can they not
recuse themselves from this case?
Congressmen Lloyd Doggett and Richard Wolffe on the question, is the
fix already in?
GLORIA CAIN, HERMAN CAIN`S WIFE: I know that`s not the person he is.
He totally respects women.
SHARPTON: Mrs. Cain stands by her man, but new poll numbers show
Republicans like Newt on their pizza pie.
NEWT GINGRICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: But this is a wild risk.
OK? Who knows what the polls are going to be two months from now?
Nia-Malika Henderson and Maria Teresa Kumar on the GOP`s ever-changing
New questions about the judge who let Jerry Sandusky walk. Wait until
you hear how she`s connected to this disgraced ex-coach. And chilling
video of Sandusky talking about kids.
JERRY SANDUSKY, FMR. PENN STATE COACH: How did it all start?
Basically because I`m a frustrated playground director, I guess.
SHARPTON: Plus, it`s 3:00 a.m. Do you know where the GOP candidates
HERMAN CAIN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Uzbeki -- Beki -- Bekistan.
SHARPTON: These guys would be funny if they weren`t so scary.
POLITICS NATION starts right now.
SHARPTON: Welcome to POLITICS NATION. I`m Al Sharpton.
Tonight`s lead, the announcement we`ve been waiting for. The Supreme
Court has agreed to decide the fate of the biggest achievement of the Obama
presidency, the health care law. It`s likely to be the most important
ruling since Bush v. Gore, with a decision expected during the presidential
What hangs in the balance is coverage for tens of millions of
Americans. That`s now in the hands of nine justices, and two of them have
clear disturbing conflicts of interest.
Just hours after deciding to hear the case, Justices Clarence Thomas
and Antonin Scalia spoke at a fund-raiser for the conservative leader group
The Federalist Society, the same night. Scalia at one table, Thomas at
At the table right in between them was Paul Clement, the key lawyer
against the Obama health care law they had just decided to rule on. They
were rubbing shoulders with the man leading the fight to kill the
president`s health care law, the lawyer who will likely argue the case
before them next year.
It`s not the first time Scalia has met Clement either. Clement got
his start clerking for Scalia. For Justice Thomas, headlining a fund-
raising dinner is just the beginning of his long list of conflicts of
interest. His wife, Virginia Thomas, is a major lobbyist for the
conservative groups including the Tea Party.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VIRGINIA THOMAS, CLARENCE THOMAS` WIFE: Washington is broken. It`s
addicted to spending. It`s addicted to power. America is at risk, and I
didn`t know how far left President Obama and the leadership was going to
Maybe we did get President Obama so that we can wake this country up.
And you guys are the political first responders, and I love the Tea Party
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THOMAS: The clear focus is to stop the Obama agenda.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The focus is to stop the Obama agenda? Mrs. Thomas also
founded a Tea Party group that supports the repeal of the Affordable Care
Act, saying it "kills insurance coverage for children."
As for Justice Thomas, he`s already said he and his wife agree on
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
JUSTICE CLARENCE THOMAS, U.S. SUPREME COURT: We love being with each
other because we love the same thing. We believe in the same things. We
are focused on defending liberty. I admire and I love her for that.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Now, don`t get me wrong. People have the right to advocate
what they want. I`ve been an advocate all my life and remain one.
But to sit as the ones to judge the law, to weigh the
constitutionality of an issue when you have clear connections to people on
one side, where members of your family are financially and personally
connected, where you attend fund-raising dinners the night you make a
decision to hear a case, that`s not advocacy. That`s saying that we`re
going to have health care decided not on a even playing field based on law,
but we open ourselves up to the partisan and political biases of at least
two members of the court.
That, Ladies and Gentlemen, my fellow Americans, should not be
Joining me now is Congressman Lloyd Doggett, Democrat from Texas, and
one of the 74 lawmakers who called for Justice Thomas to recuse himself in
this case. He`s also a former state Supreme Court justice.
Also joining me, MSNBC political analyst Richard Wolffe.
Congressman Doggett, let me start with you. How can we expect a fair
ruling from justices who have such a blatant conflict of interest?
REP. LLOYD DOGGETT (D), TEXAS: Well, on such an important case as
this, clearly Justice Thomas should not be hearing the case with his wife
being a self-described ambassador to the Tea Party, with the agenda that
they have got. I`m really pleased the court is hearing this case. I think
it`s a very strong case in the court to keep other American families out of
court facing a bankruptcy judge because they have no health insurance.
And so I`m pleased they`ll decide this, but it`s unfortunate that
Justice Thomas would involve himself in the case.
SHARPTON: Now, Richard, this is serious. This is clear. I just
played the sound bite where Mrs. Thomas spoke herself about maybe President
Obama happened to wake this country up.
We`re not talking about some kind of interpretation, some marginal
attack. This is direct, frontal, partisan attack. We might add that Mr.
Thomas did not disclose his wife`s connection and financial connection
How can he sit there? And then, let me bring this up to you, let me
show you this.
Tomorrow, there`s a forum called the Constitutionality of Health Care
Reform sponsored by The Federalist Society, the exact organization that
Judge Scalia and Judge Thomas keynoted their fund-raiser the other night.
RICHARD WOLFFE, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, let me separate out
these two things, because I think The Federalist Society has been pursuing
conservative legal principles for many, many years, and it`s no secret that
these justices are ultra conservatives. That`s what they are.
I don`t think The Federalist Society, frankly, is going to influence
them. But what you`re talking about with Justice Thomas` wife is something
It isn`t even about the influence, because, look, let`s face it, a lot
of lawyers, a lot of judges, and Supreme Court justices think they can have
some out-of-body experience where they`re not influenced. The lawyers are
on one side and everything else in their lives are on another.
What you have though with Justice Thomas` wife is the appearance, a
strong appearance of a conflict of interest. And the appearance of justice
is something the courts have taken into consideration for many, many
decades, if not centuries. It`s as important, almost maybe as important,
as the execution of fair justice, as the appearance of impartial justice.
And that`s where I think Justice Thomas is in real trouble here. It`s
an outlier. His wife can her have own opinions, but to be so active and so
engaged and so public about it is really troubling.
SHARPTON: And let me go back to you, Congressman.
The fact of the matter is that this is not just about President Obama,
who clearly this is probably his major accomplishment in the first term, or
certainly among them. This is about the health care and insurance of
America, 50 million uninsured. We`re talking about the fact that if these
judges, if these justices rule in a biased way, they will impact millions
upon millions of people and into the future. This is very, very serious.
DOGGETT: Absolutely. There are millions of Americans at risk if the
court should reject this plan.
Finally, we have a mechanism through this health care law to assure
that families don`t find themselves with the fine print of the insurance
policy denying them coverage they thought they had, being able to put their
young person on the family policy. We have about a million more people
from age 18 to 26 on policies this issues this year than last year, I think
directly as a result of this health insurance law.
The protection that it affords to our seniors is really important, and
extending the solvency of the Medicare trust fund by a dozen years. All of
these are part of a very complex health care law that if you remove one
part of it, the individual mandate, you stand to jeopardize the entire
reform on which so many Americans are depending.
SHARPTON: Now, Congressman, let me say this, many Americans -- and
I`m certainly one of them -- did not understand there was any kind of
guidelines to members of the Supreme Court. Let me show you guidelines
that apply to federal judges and supposed to be used for guidelines at the
Supreme Court, but they`re not mandated.
These guidelines say, "Any justice, judge or magistrate judge in the
United States shall disqualify himself at any proceeding in which his
impartiality might reasonably be questioned."
Now, this is enforced for federal judges and others, but it is not
enforceable by the Supreme Court. It is understood that we would hope they
would stand up and do the right thing.
This is outrageous.
DOGGETT: Well, it really is a problem, because it does cast a cloud
over these proceedings. If he should happen to be a deciding vote, it
raises a real appearance of impropriety.
And I think as your guest said, it really rises to a different level
given her extended involvement and outspoken comments against the president
and his agenda far beyond just the traditional right-wing approach of The
SHARPTON: Now, Richard, the -- also, you see on those same
guidelines, it says this -- this law also states that "A judge may attend
fund-raising events of law-related and other organizations, although the
judge may not be a speaker, a guest of honor, or featured on the program of
such an event."
Well, if the Supreme Court judges were operating based on the spirit
of this, then Judge Scalia and Judge Thomas could not have been speakers at
Thursday night`s event where Mr. Clement sat at the table between the two
of them. This is blatantly saying we may have the right to our own
discretion, and we just decide we`re going to do what we want to do.
WOLFFE: Yes. You know, Chief Justice Roberts really has to kind of
weigh in here, because there are lawyers on all sides of the divide who say
the Supreme Court isn`t just about deciding on whether something is
constitutional or not. They are setting the lead, the example, the model
for courts, judges throughout the system, federal and the lower level, at
state level courts as well.
And so it`s really up to the chief justice there as the sort of top of
this legal system to say we do have standards, and appearances matter. And
we`ve seen Justice Thomas get into this situation before about fund-raisers
and political activity.
I think that the chief justice himself respects the institution of the
Supreme Court and wants his legacy to be one where those values are upheld.
So let`s see if he weighs in.
SHARPTON: Well, let me say this, Congressman Doggett and Richard, I
remember Bush v. Gore. So pardon me if I don`t become a little skeptical
of whether the court will not do the partisan thing.
I am not again talking about this as a Democrat. I`m not talking
about this any other way than 50 million uninsured Americans that need
this, the millions of Americans in the future that do not need to see this
as ruled as unconstitutional unless it does fairly and squarely based on
Congressman Doggett, I said it before, I say it again, this is about
all of us and the well-being of Americans. It`s not about Obama. It`s
about our mama. And this can be a problem for mama.
DOGGETT: It really is. And for everyone on Medicare, for everyone
who is counting on getting access to the health care that they`ve been
denied previously, worried about a child born with a disability, worried
about an illness that afflicted a family, we don`t want to see more and
more families ending up in the court themselves in front of a bankruptcy
judge knowing that health care costs have been a leading cause of
bankruptcy, a leading cause of credit card debt.
These are the families that are counting on a fair hearing. And if
Justice Thomas has already made up his mind, he ought not be hearing this
I would like to see him recuse himself. I certainly agree, Chief
Justice Roberts should weigh in, the other colleagues should weigh in. But
we will have to find some type of remedy if this pattern on such important
issues continues with Justice Thomas.
SHARPTON: No doubt about it.
Congressman Doggett, Richard Wolffe, thanks to both of you for being
with me this evening.
DOGGETT: Thank you.
WOLFFE: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Ahead, Herman Cain`s wife stands by her man, but others are
fleeing to Newt Gingrich. Is this a reality show or what?
Plus, the Republican Party ripped apart over waterboarding. Would you
trust any one of them with a 3:00 a.m. call?
You`re watching POLITICS NATION on MSNBC.
SHARPTON: By now, we all know President Obama can handle that 3:00
a.m. phone call at the White House. He`s proven it time and again,
bringing in to justice Bin Laden, getting rid of Gadhafi.
But the question is, can these Republicans handle that call? I don`t
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NARRATOR: It`s 3:00 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. But
there`s a phone in the White House and it`s ringing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor Perry, you advocate the elimination of
the Department of Energy. If you eliminate the Department of Energy --
GOV. RICK PERRY (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`m glad you
NARRATOR: Your vote will decide who answers that call.
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If we reelect Barack Obama,
Iran will have a nuclear weapon. And if we elect Mitt Romney, if you elect
me as the next president, they will not have a nuclear weapon.
NARRATOR: Whether it`s someone who already knows the world`s leaders,
knows the military --
CAIN: And when they ask me who the president of Uzbeki -- Beki --
Uzbekistan, I`m going to say, "You know, I don`t know."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Mr. Cain won`t even know who is on the other end of the
But what`s most frightening is this field wants to go back to a policy
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If I were
president, I would be willing to use waterboarding. I think it was very
effective. It gained information for our country.
CAIN: I would return to that policy. I don`t see it as torture, I
see it as an enhanced interrogation technique.
PERRY: And I am for using the techniques -- not torture -- but using
those techniques that we know will extract the information to save young
American lives. And I will be for it until I die.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you, Governor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Folks, take it from a man that took down the world`s most
wanted terrorist, as Americans we`re above waterboarding.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Let me just say this,
they`re wrong. Waterboarding is torture. It`s contrary to America`s
traditions. It`s contrary to our ideals.
That`s not who we are. That`s now how we operate. We don`t need it
in order to prosecute the war on terrorism.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Joining me now is Matthew Alexander, a former senior
military interrogator who conducted or supervised more than 1,300
interrogations. He also is the author of "Kill or Capture." And Dana
Milbank, columnist for "The Washington Post."
Matthew, you`re an expert at interrogations. Are Republicans right?
Is waterboarding effective to save American lives?
MATTHEW ALEXANDER, AUTHOR, "KILL OR CAPTURE": It`s absolutely not
effective. In fact, the evidence against waterboarding is very simply put
in the case of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 plot, who
was waterboarded 183 times, and then lied to his interrogators and told
them that Osama bin Laden`s courier had retired, when, in fact, he had not
and ended up being the key to finding Osama bin Laden. That`s just one
example of the many in which torture did not work, and it instead actually
slowed down our ability to conduct operations.
SHARPTON: Now, wait a minute. Say that again slowly, because I want
people to get this. He was tortured. He was waterboarded. And he gave
ALEXANDER: That`s correct. He was waterboarded 183 times, and he
lied to his interrogators. And he said that Abu Ahmed Al-Kuwaiti, the
courier for Bin Laden, was retired, when, in fact, he wasn`t retired. And
our best chance to find Osama bin Laden at that time, as early as 2003,
,was Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who refused to cooperate and continued to lie
to his interrogators because he had been tortured.
SHARPTON: Now, Dana, when you look at the fact that even Senator John
McCain said that he doesn`t agree with waterboarding, and, in fact, he was
-- made this statement about his fellow Republicans, saying -- they support
it -- saying he was "very disappointed by statements at the South Carolina
GOP debate supporting waterboarding. Waterboarding is torture."
This is John McCain, their last standard-bearer.
DANA MILBANK, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Yes. I mean, watching that
debate, I got the sense that they weren`t so much debating to be the
Republican presidential nominee, but sort of auditioning to be the next
grand inquisitor. It goes even beyond where the Bush administration was.
President Bush would talk with some reluctance to use whatever
techniques are necessary to elicit the information he needs. This went
well beyond that. It was almost lustful about the benefits of
waterboarding. And I think that you`re seeing a Republican Party right now
that has gone significantly beyond where Bush and Cheney were.
SHARPTON: Now, maybe they are trying, Mr. Alexander, to pander to
some extreme crowd because they have an uphill battle to put either of
their -- or any of their credentials against this president. Look at this
full screen of President Obama`s foreign policy achievements.
May: successful raid on Osama bin Laden.
September: the death of Anwar al-Awlaki.
October: Libyan rebels kill Gadhafi, announcement of Iraq withdrawal.
I mean, when you have these kinds of things that the president, who
they said would be weak on foreign policy, and weak in this area, how do
you run against them? I guess by trying to go to an extreme and act as
though something that he doesn`t believe in could work when all the
evidence that you`ve just given some concrete examples are to the contrary.
ALEXANDER: That`s correct, Al. I believe that these candidates that
are pro-torture, who are for bringing back waterboarding and enhanced
interrogation techniques, are simply trying the to make political points.
I mean, let`s remember that the convention against torture was signed
and pushed through Congress by President Ronald Reagan, another Republican.
The stance against torture was in this country, and to make it U.S. law by
having it ratified by Congress was initially a Republican-passed
And so, you know, these candidates are really just trying to score
points with Republican voters. But let`s also commend Representative Paul
and Mr. Jon Huntsman for standing up and saying no, that this isn`t what
America is about, and that torture is inconsistent with American values.
And plus, interrogators have been saying all along we don`t need it.
SHARPTON: No, I think you`re right to point out that two of them did
Let me go to you a minute, Dana.
Now, many of us on different sides of the political spectrum, right
and left, may disagree with any given policy. I`ve disagreed with some of
the intervention into sovereign states. But explain to me, Dana, what it
is that Mr. Cain stands for when he attacks President Obama on his
involvement in Libya.
I want you to look at this interview he did with "The Milwaukee
Journal Sentinel" and interpret it for me and for my fellow Americans.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you agreed with President Obama on Libya, or
CAIN: OK, Libya.
I do not agree with the way he handled it for the following reason.
That`s a different one. I`ve got to go back and see. I`ve got all
this stuff twirling around in my head.
Specifically, what are you asking me did I agree or not disagree with?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Dana, you are my expert in Cain language. Could you
explain that to me?
MILBANK: Reverend Al, I would love to explain it, but I have got a
lot of stuff twirling around in my head right now and I can`t quite make
sense of it.
And you have to tell your viewers, this goes on for five minutes like
this. And you really get the sense you`re watching a spoof of it. In
fact, for people who satirize politics, it`s getting very hard to do any
better than Rick Perry did to himself and now Herman Cain has done to
himself in this video.
Clearly, as with the torture, the idea for a Republican audience is to
criticize the president for everything and anything. The problem in Libya
is it actually turned out, at least so far, to work out pretty much as the
president had wanted it to.
SHARPTON: Well, I don`t have a problem with him disagreeing with the
policy. I have a problem with him not knowing why he disagrees and not
even knowing what the policy is.
MILBANK: And he was asked the question over and over.
SHARPTON: But in fairness to Mr. Cain, his campaign did release a
statement on why he was so incomprehensive in his statement. He says, "The
video is being taken out of context. He was taking questions for about 30
to 40 minutes on four hours of sleep. He didn`t say anything."
Well, I`ll show you how the polls are going. Mr. Cain may have time
for a full night`s sleep soon.
Mathew Alexander and Dana Milbank, thanks for your time this evening.
MILBANK: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Ahead, Herman Cain brings out the entire family, and Gloria
Allred brings out a former boyfriend of the accusers.
And get ready for some Tiffany. Newt is searching in the polls. You
can`t make this stuff up, folks.
Stay with us.
SHARPTON: Welcome back to POLITICS NATION. The Godfather of Pizza is
finally starting to feel the heat of the republican race. Two weeks into
the Herman Cain sexual harassment scandal, his popularity is plummeting. A
new poll released today shows Cain has fallen from front-runner to third.
Behind Romney and Newt Gingrich. Cain is down a whopping 11 points since
last month. This news comes out as the former boyfriend of Cain accuser
Sharon Bialek came forward today with lawyer Gloria Allred to say Cain did
no Bialek despite Cain denials.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VICTOR ZUCKERMAN, EX-BOYFRIEND OF CAIN ACCUSER: Sharon indeed did
meet and spend time with Mr. Cain. Sharon introduced me to Mr. Cain. Mr.
Cain invited Sharon and I to an exclusive after-party. At that party Mr.
Cain engaged both of us in conversation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: It`s desperate times for team Cain, and now they`re calling
in the big guns. Cain`s wife Gloria, who we`ve seen once since his husband
announced his candidacy, just sat down to a first interview to talk about
the Herman Cain she knows.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GLORIA CAIN, WIFE OF HERMAN CAIN: To hear such graphic allegations
and know that that would have been something that was totally disrespectful
of her as a woman, and I know that`s not the person he is. He totally
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: She`s standing by her man. But how long will republicans
Joining me now is Nia-Malika Henderson, "Washington Post" national
reporter who also writes for their election 2012 blog. And Maria Teresa
Kumar, executive director of Voto Latino and an MSNBC contributor. Nia-
Malika, is Herman Cain`s pizza cooked?
NIA MALIKA-HENDERSON, "THE WASHINGTON POST": Well, that certainly
seems to be what the polls are showing on. His stumble, for instance,
today on Libya, that is certainly not going to help him. One of the things
that Karl Rove said when this thing first hit was that it would probably
take voters about two weeks to really start to change their mind about
Herman Cain. And that seems to be what we`re seeing in this poll. We`ve
got a poll with "The Washington Post" that we`re going to debut at about
6:30. So, that will be on our Web site but yes, and I think the question
now, the question last week was how does Perry come back from his stumble?
And I think the question now for Herman Cain is how does he put together
some argument to the voters where he is seen as a commander in chief, seen
as a viable presidential option rather than somebody who is simply a
lightning rod for the far right around the sexual harassment allegations.
SHARPTON: Well, if you look at the polls, Maria, you see that the
surprising beneficiary of Cain`s drop is Newt Gingrich.
MARIA TERESA KUMAR, VOTO LATINO: That`s right.
SHARPTON: I mean, when you look at the fact that Newt Gingrich now
has topped one of the polls and has become the flavor of the month when
just a couple of months ago, a few months ago, we were talking about Newt
owning a jewelry store, owning a half million dollars. And Newt staff
leaving him in several states and Newt went on vacation with his wife in
Greece and now he`s gone up 14 points. So, I mean, what is this telling
KUMAR: I think it`s telling us that the Republican Party doesn`t
want Mitt Romney. I mean, you nailed it. $100,000 shopping spree at
Tiffany`s. Another candidate with sexual harassment of the -- already four
women coming forward. And then on top of that, you have another one,
Perry, Texas Perry who seems to be the lone star for Texas is all the
sudden can`t remember his own platform. And it says, that it spells big
trouble for Mitt Romney. He still looks like the shining star. He`s
likely to get the nominee. But they`re going to make sure that he spends
every single penny in every single one of the caucus between now and
January. And that`s what telling about the republican nominee process.
Romney, for whatever reason cannot be the darling at this time.
SHARPTON: Nia, it appears that Maria is onto something here because
despite all of this fall and this, of course, we`re looking at polls before
this bizarre interview about Libya, which is almost equal to forgetting
your third point of the agencies you want to close from Rick Perry. So,
maybe he decided he wanted to at least equal if not one up him. But he
kept raising money. Look at this, Herman Cain, during the fall, raised $9
million. So, it seems like the message is we -- even candidates with
candidates, let`s say serious questions, we just don`t want Willard.
HENDERSON: Yes. That`s certainly what it seems to be at this point.
And I think looking ahead for Mitt Romney, he`s got to be worried. Not
only about these poll numbers. He`s got a 23, 25 percent feeling at this
point and he`s got somebody in Rick Perry stumbled in the CNBC debate. But
he has also has $15 million in the bank. Perry is known as somebody who
can really run a negative campaign. And he`s got 15 million reasons to
dump all of the negative opposition research that he`s collected on Mitt
Romney, really dump it in these early states. Iowa, South Carolina and New
Hampshire. And I think that`s what we`re going to see ahead here at this
huge ad buy on FOX. He`s doing the same in South Carolina. And so, I
think that`s were really probably going to be worrisome for Mitt Romney and
could give him some troubles in the days ahead.
SHARPTON: Now, Maria, one of the things that you and I have been
concerned about in our individual careers has been bias. And one of the
things that we`ve had to deal with in the face of confronting things that
are going around globally is this whole bias to give Muslims Islamophobia.
And Herman Cain was questioned by GQ Magazine, and had a very interesting
statement that I think is disturbing. He stated, quote, "I have had one
very well known Muslim voice say to me directly that a majority of Muslims
shared the extremist views." GQ reporters. A majority, Herman Cain, yes,
a majority. Now, what does this kind of language do to the average
American-Muslim in this country if we start broad painting that the
majority of anybodies become extremists?
KUMAR: Well, the next president of the United States, if that`s what
he wants to be, has to make sure that we`re all inclusive and we`re all
American. And then I think his charge is not that dissimilar from
basically saying that African-Americans have been brainwash by the
Democratic Party. Not only is it harmful. But at the same time, it
doesn`t actually providing inclusive dialogue. And he`s wrong. When you
actually read the Koran, the Koran actually believes that Islam is actually
a very peaceful religion. So I think that it actually is telling that he`s
only -- it sounded like his polling -- his polling numbers were won. And
that one basically created the most extreme outlier. That`s something one
should really pick up on. He`s not actually thoughtful in this case.
SHARPTON: Nia, that`s the thing that disturbs me most is that the
extremism here. Cain attacking African-Americans, now attacking Muslims.
Perry going all the way about executions and the whole idea of not even
losing any sleep over whether he ever made a mistake and a couple of
punishment. It`s like they`re going to the most extreme elements to appeal
to try to win this nomination to go for the White House. And that scares
me on what it says to the future of American politics if we get into giving
some kind of extreme weight to start winning nominations.
HENDERSON: Yes. I think if you look back at where Cain has been
campaigning, if you can call what he`s been doing campaigning, going to,
you know, states like Alabama, for instance, he`s been speaking to Tea
Party rallies. And that`s the language on a more national stage that he`s
used to speaking. So, that`s what we`re hearing from him. We`re not
hearing a very broad vision of America. We`re not hearing a very broad
vision of the relationship that America has internationally with other
countries. And so, yes, I think they`re having a problem transitioning
from a more general election campaign because they`re so focused on this
Tea Party base. So focused on the extreme wings of their party. And in
fact, this is going to be a problem for them. And it`s one of the reasons
why they`re plummeting I think in the polls. Because they`ve been playing
so specifically in this pretty small fraction of their party.
SHARPTON: Well, Nia, you`re a little biased. You`re used to
candidates that understand and then answer your questions. Nia-Malika
Henderson and Maria Teresa Kumar, thanks to both of you for your time.
HENDERSON: Thank you.
KUMAR: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Ahead, outrage at Penn State. New questions about the
judge who gave the alleged child molester reduced bail.
And chilling new video of the accused coach talking about his work
with kids. A quarter of a century ago. Stay with us.
SHARPTON: And NBC interview from 1987 from the alleged child molester
and his chilling hearing. That`s next.
SHARPTON: We`re back with new outrage in the horrific sex abuse
scandal at Penn State. Chilling video of the accused child molester, Jerry
Sandusky talking about his work with kids in an interview with NBC News
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JERRY SANDUSKY, FORMER PENN STATE FOOTBALL COACH: I really enjoy the
personal contact. I get a lot of personal contact in my life. There are
many, many children who could benefit from the second mile. And we would
like to serve as many children as we possibly can. It`s one of the biggest
things would be the trust that we developed. What we`re trying to be is
true friend. Someone who cares about them. Someone who enjoys them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Today, we also learn that the judge who let Sandusky walk
out of jail on reduced bail failed to reveal her ties to his charity. The
online profile of Judge Leslie Dutchcot says she volunteers for Second
Mile, the charity group from which Sandusky allegedly selected his victims.
She also donated up to a thousand dollars to the group. Also today, the
CEO of Sandusky`s charity, a man named Jack Raykovitz resigned. According
to Grand Jury reports, Raykovitz was told back in 2002 that Sandusky had
quote, "Inappropriate conduct with a 10-year-old boy." Yet Sandusky
continued to interact with children for another six years.
Joining me now is Bill Fallon, a former prosecutor who oversaw the
sexual assault and child abuse unit in Essex County, Massachusetts. He has
dealt with many sex abuse cases involving the Catholic Church. Thanks for
being here. First, Bill, what about this judge? Was there a conflict of
WILLIAM FALLON, FORMER ESSEX COUNTY PROSECUTOR: Certainly from what
we know. It`s something that should have been told to the parties here.
So, whether it rises to real conflict of interest under their statutes, I
have to tell, I would be taking a motion if I`m the prosecutor back for
reconsideration of bail saying, if it`s true, if the facts as presented it
true, this judge had an obligation to say these guys are my guys. And he`s
the head of this organization and quite frankly he started it. I know he
only works there now. And I think it makes the judiciary look bad.
Remember, it`s not only whether something is improper, but the appearance
as you know Al, of impropriety and that`s what we have here now.
SHARPTON: Exactly right. Because that`s what we`ve been questioning
from the Supreme Court, Penn State is the appearance, as you say. We`ve
been dealing with this. You look at the fact, the prosecutors I believe
asked for $500,000 bail, ankle bracelet. She came back and gave him only
$100,000 bail. No ankle bracelet. She volunteered for Sandusky`s Second
Mile charity. Never discloses that to the prosecution. And donated $500
to $1,000. Never exposed that. I mean, this has all of the appearances of
a conflict, and whether the letter of the law there makes it that or not, I
don`t see how you get around the fact she had an obligation to put this out
there. Particularly since she was denying the request of the prosecutor.
FALLON: Al, I agree with you. And I want you to know, judges all
around the United States basically lowball bail on child molesters, child
rapists, as we have here allegations of that. And that`s the tragedy of
it. On the other hand, when you have this kind of relationship if you
will, the appearance of impropriety as I said, it should have been noted
and that left to the prosecutor to say, I want this judge off this case.
Again, not because there is a conflict necessarily, but certainly at a
minimum is the appearance of conflict. And certainly when we see that
film, I just have to throw this in, when you saw that film, if I`m the
prosecutor on the case, that shows you that Sandusky, that`s my opening
statement to the jury.
SHARPTON: Now, here`s something else that Bill, we have in. An e-
mail last week, just last week, from Mike McQueary, who is the man at the
center of this in 2002 that witnessed allegedly witnessed the raping of
this 10-year-old boy, walked in with the young man`s -- young boy`s hands
up. He`s naked being raped according to the grand jury report. And he
said, quote, in his e-mail, "I did the right thing. I didn`t just turn and
run. I made sure it stopped. I had to make quick, tough decisions." Now,
that is an exclusive to NBC. But it really does not -- is not consistent
with the grand jury reports of his actions.
FALLON: Well, I mean, having read the grand jury minutes, Al, the
question is, he says I went, I told the people. I did what I had to do
under the law. First of all, he`s going to been an important witness in
this case which why the prosecution might want to treat him gingerly. But
number two, this is the problem with the laws. If you look at all of the
states, even if somebody up the train has to report to the Department of
Social Services of the Elk (ph). No one has to report to police. This is
the outrage. It`s why children continue to be raped. It`s why children in
these cases went on and on. And that`s where the law has to be changed.
Not just in Pennsylvania. But everywhere. But the culture, as I say, it`s
the corruption of corruption to keep this quiet, that has to be changed in
Pennsylvania, but elsewhere, too.
SHARPTON: And must be changed everywhere. Bill Fallon, thanks so
much for your time. We`ll be right back.
SHARPTON: The Godfather of Pizza is bringing us deep into the
psychological world of pizza. Earlier, we told you about the interview he
gave to "GQ" magazine. He was asked about pizza toppings. And in true,
Cain style to answer, was somewhat puzzling. Quote, "the more toppings a
man has on his pizza, I believe the more manly he is. Because the more
manly man is not afraid of abundance. A manly man don`t want it piled high
with vegetables. He would call that a sissy pizza."
Can you believe we have a guy running for president talking about
(HERMAN CAIN SINGING)
SHARPTON: And then he moved to dessert. When asked what flavors his
rivals might be. Cain said, Mitt Romney is plain vanilla. Rick Perry is
rocky road and Michele Bachmann`s ice-cream flavor, is tutti frutti.
There`s pretty funny, but I disagree with Mr. Cain about Willard flavor,
there`s no way in the world Willard could commit to just one. If Willard
Mitt Romney could be any ice cream, he would be banana nut cookies and
cream, pink bubble gum, rum raisin, rainbow sherbet, coconut pistachio,
mint chocolate chip, strawberry with rainbow sprinkles on top. In a cup.
No wait -- in a cone.
By not only do I believe that Mr. Cain is wrong about the flavors. He
once talked about him being haagen-dazs. Well, when I look at the
republican candidates, I think of another brand. When I was a little boy,
we used to wait on Mr. Softy. When you pick up foreign affairs, soft.
When you think of domestic affairs, soft. When you think of how they`re
going to provide jobs, soft. They are the Mr. Softy crowd. And Mr. Softy
tastes good. But it wasn`t hard. It had no content. And it always got me
messed up. Somebody get the washing machine ready. We`re about to have a
Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. Hardball starts right now.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
<Copy: Content and programming copyright 2011 MSNBC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Transcription Copyright 2011 ASC LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. No license is
granted to the user of this material other than for research. User may not
reproduce or redistribute the material except for user`s personal or
internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall
user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may
infringe upon MSNBC and ASC LLC`s copyright or other proprietary rights or
interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of
MORE FROM POLITICSNATION
Add PoliticsNation headlines to your news reader: