All In With Chris Hayes, Wednesday, July 17th, 2013
Read the transcript from the Wednesday show
ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
July 17, 2013
Guest: Eric Boehlert, Hakeem Jeffries, Matt Welch, Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Ari
Berman, Larry Hall
CHRIS HAYES, HOST: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
Tonight on ALL IN:
In the wake of the Zimmerman verdict, the movement against "Stand Your
Ground" laws is gaining momentum, which means, of course, the right wing
and the NRA are doubling down on it. Reverend Al Sharpton will be my guest
Also, the resurrection of the Voting Rights Act. The Supreme Court
may have left it for dead, but that has spawned a real effort in Congress
to save it. Senator Amy Klobuchar will be here to give us the latest.
Plus, Senator Mike Enzi of Wyoming thought he was friends with the
Cheney family. Then again, so did that guy who got shot in the face. Liz
Cheney for Senate, this is going to be good.
But we begin tonight four days since the jury declared George
Zimmerman not guilty with an American right wing working overtime to create
a counter narrative about black racism, white victim hood and persecution.
You see, in a bizarro world of conservative commentary, a dead black
teenager and a shooter who`s been found not guilty is a parable for, quote,
"reverse racism" towards white people. And yet another example to justify
fear of the black other.
Leading the charge is the right wing group perhaps most invested in
making sure there are millions of people like George Zimmerman walking
around fearful and armed.
The National Rifle Association, fresh off their victory of a concealed
law in the latest hold out state in Illinois, the NRA is attacking Attorney
General Eric Holder for these comments he made yesterday at the NAACP
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: It is our collective obligation
we must stand our ground to ensure -- to ensure that our laws reduce
violence and take a hard look at laws that contribute to more violence than
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Today, the NRA fired back saying, the attorney general fails
to understand that self-defense is not a concept, it`s a fundamental human
right to send a message that legitimate self-defense is to blame is
unconscionable and demonstrates once again that this administration will
exploit tragedies to push their political agenda.
Joining me now to discuss the growing movement against "Stand Your
Ground" is my colleague, Reverend Al Sharpton, host of MSNBC`s "POLITICS
NATION", founder and president of the National Action Network. He
delivered a speech on the law at the NAACP in Orlando today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AL SHARPTON, MSNBC HOST: We cannot have our sons and daughters` lives
on the line for anybody that wants to pursue them, follow them and kill
them and say it`s in self-defense. Outsider named ALEC brought "Stand Your
Ground" in. So, outsiders like Al going to help bring "Stand Your Ground"
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Reverend, this is what I hear from conservatives, they say,
you liberals don`t understand, you`re so foolish. "Stand Your Ground" had
nothing to do with this case. The Zimmerman defense didn`t use "Stand Your
Why are you so upset about "Stand Your Ground"? That`s not to blame
for the verdict.
SHARPTON: They should listen to the interview that the one juror has
done who cited all the way through the interview "Stand Your Ground", said
it was considered in the deliberations, in the jury room -- as well as the
fact "Stand Your Ground" changed the self-defense instructions of the
"Stand Your Ground" was the basis that George Zimmerman was not
arrested. Zimmerman was not arrested the night he shot Trayvon Martin.
You can`t take "Stand Your Ground" out, when it was the premise of his not
being arrested. It was the basis that the instructions were changed on how
you instruct a jury on self-defense in the state of Florida.
And to prove it, the juror said "Stand Your Ground" we couldn`t go
against when we were deliberating, you can`t have that evidence than that.
HAYES: Today, there was a group of people called the Dream Defenders
who have been occupying the capital in Florida. Yes, really impressive,
they`ve been calling for a meeting with Rick Scott.
Rick issued a statement about his feeling about stand your ground. He
says that they put together a state task force, and he says this, "This
task force listened to Floridians across the state, heard their viewpoints
and expert opinions on this law. The task force recommended the law should
not be overturned and Governor Scott agrees."
What`s your reaction?
SHARPTON: Well, I mean, it was appointed by him, but I think that the
legislators in Florida, National Action Network is having a three-day
conference next week to deal with how we organize in 100 cities across the
country dealing with "Stand Your Ground" and federal involvement this
And the clear case now is, we have an example with this trial of the
dangers of "Stand Your Ground". What was interesting to me, Chris, is this
juror again stated that Trayvon Martin, even after -- and I`m quoting, he
was confronted by George Zimmerman, he should have gone home.
Well, if you really believe in self-defense and "Stand Your Ground",
if you admit that George Zimmerman confronted him, then why couldn`t
Trayvon Martin use "Stand Your Ground" and not retreat? Why did he have to
go home? Why didn`t he have the right to self-defense? It`s even
selective how it`s applied.
You`ve been doing a fantastic job on the Marissa Alexander case.
"Stand Your Ground" doesn`t apply to her. So, not only is it bad law, it
is not even equally applied because it`s at the discretion of the judge.
HAYES: So why do you understand this lack of equal application? I
think this gets to the core of it. You and I understand "Stand Your
Ground", not as a neutral law brought to the citizens, because of some
philosophical adherence to self-defense, right? There`s an agenda
connected to a broader agenda, about making people fearful and people
fearful of specific other people.
SHARPTON: And if you personify danger, threat with color, age dress
and you personify what is solid and safe with law abiding other than that,
clearly those that are white and perceived a certain way, have the right to
"Stand Your Ground". Those that are not are the ones we`re standing our
ground against even if they`re the ones being approached as in the case of
Trayvon Martin, even this juror stigma --
HAYES: So, where does this go from here? I know the National Action
Network is doing marches this weekend. What do you -- what are the next
steps here? Is it going to state legislators in the states for these laws
to pass and attack those laws, going after repealing them?
SHARPTON: You got to go after these laws both in the courts and at
the voting box. You have to say to these legislators, and don`t forget
next year is an election year in Florida, the governor down, that you must
mobilize voters to protect themselves, because what Trayvon Martin`s case
does is say anybody now, any nut can say, I was in fear of my life, I could
use deadly force -- that`s a threat to everyone. We must avoid that
HAYES: Reverend Al Sharpton, host of MSNBC`s "POLITICS NATION", great
pleasure to have you.
SHARPTON: Thank you, Chris.
HAYES: Now, outside the narrow focus of the NRA, the broader world of
right wing media has been obsessed with the supposed hypocrisy of people
who are outraged about the verdict, because those people don`t get outraged
enough about black on black crime.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
BERNIE GOLDBERG, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Black thugs are killing black
people. So if you want to talk about contempt that people have for black
men, you know, the most contempt that people have for black men are other
BILL O`REILLY, FOX NEWS: The horrendous black on black murder rate is
virtually ignored by the press, best to blame the white power structure and
look the other way.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What about black on black crime? How about the
kids that are being killed in our inner cities? Where is everybody? Why
don`t you get your civil rights people with the black on black?
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
HAYES: Sorry, I couldn`t help but laugh at that.
Jamelle Bouie, in a fantastic response to this repeated myth, points
out that, quote, "There is no such thing as black on black crime. Yes,
from 1976 to 2005, 94 percent of black victims were killed by black
offenders. That racial exclusivity was also true for white victims of
violent crime. Eighty-six percent were killed by white offenders. For the
large majority of crimes, you`ll find that victims and offenders share a
racial identity. "
Now, the right media is not callously and cynically using the tragic
deaths of young black shooting victims in major urban centers to score
points in some weird, racial grievance contest. They`re devoting their,
albeit, small capacity for empathy to George Zimmerman himself who has
become a kind of martyr figure.
Today, "The Daily Caller" sent a 16-year-old intern to troll Jay
Carney about federal protection for Zimmerman and his family.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because of the death threats being received by
George Zimmerman and his parents, is the president going to take any action
for their security, or they`re on their own?
JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The president has called for
echoing the statements of Trayvon Martin`s family, for calm reflection in
the wake of the verdict.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, no?
CARNEY: You can editorialize all you want, I have no doubt you will.
But that is a ridiculous statement.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now is MSNBC contributor Joy Reid, who`s also
managing editor at TheGrio.com, and Eric Boehlert, a senior fellow on Media
Matters for America.
I`ve got to talk about "The Daily Caller" trolling. But the black on
black crime thing, there`s something about the invocation, the phrase that
just really greats. It`s cringe-inducing, I think what`s cringe inducing
is the manifest disingenuous of it.
I mean, first of all, liberals and black writers, commentators,
journalists, pundits of all stripes are constantly talking about people
getting shot in Chicago. We`ve done segments on it. You have talked -- I
mean, it`s not like no one cares. People are up in arms in Chicago. There
have been huge mass mobilizations against the mayor in the African-American
community, specifically about the problem there. So, it`s just not true.
But there`s this like very gross underbelly, am I right to this
obsession with black on black crime?
JOY REID, THEGRIO.COM: Yes, I got to tell you, I`m just touched by
the concern for white conservatives for crime in the inner city. And I
look at all of "The Daily Caller" pieces about Hadiya Pendleton. Oh, wait,
those didn`t exist because they don`t care about Hadiya Pendleton. They
don`t really care about inner city crime.
And the examples of that are two. One, when Illinois tries to pass
laws that reduce the number of handguns on the streets of a city like that,
they challenge the laws and says, you can`t have those laws. And number
two, if you care so much about gang shootings and inner city crimes, you
shouldn`t like stand your ground, because the other dirty little secret is
that they are quite successfully used by gang members who get into gang
shootouts with other gang members and then say, I was in fear for my life.
That other guy is in a gang.
And that actually has happened in Florida. So if you really care so
much about us, black folks, you really want to oppose stand your ground.
HAYES: And then part of it also, Eric, is associating blackness with
criminality, which has been the disgusting dark underbelly of this entire
conversation from the beginning and was part of the bizarre and awful
character assassination of Trayvon Martin who still lies in a grave at this
ERIC BOEHLERT, MEDIA MATTERS: Well, it`s not just black association
of crime, it`s Chicago, Obama, black crime. That is the five-year story
they`ve been trying to tell. As you Joy pointed, you know, people try to
talk about getting guns off the streets of Chicago who is the first to
complain, who is the first to raise a ruckus, the right wing media and the
But the denigration of Trayvon Martin has been amazing and it
continues this week. You know, it was an ugly attempt in 2012 to sort of
shift the blame, shift the focus away from George Zimmerman -- this is a
kid who deserved what he got, let`s face it. You know, passing around
phony pictures of him on the Internet, you know, posting his old tweets and
presenting him as a thug and things like that.
So that was resurrected this week after the trial of Geraldo Rivera,
saying he wore a hoodie, he looked like a thug, you`re going to get what
you`re going to get.
Ted Nugent, you know, practically dancing on this poor kid`s grave
with comments about how he was responsible for his death. So, that has
been incredibly tasteless but not surprising a thing.
REID: I will never forget the phrase that Trayvon Martin was a rabid
dog that needed to be put down. Nobody on the right ever condemned that
kind of language, they`re still doing it to this day. They`re still saying
he was a thug, a black thug who deserved to die.
BOEHLERT: Yes. And let`s talk about, you know, in terms of the
conversation on the right, Rush Limbaugh hit a new low, saying the trial
was justification for him using the N-word.
BOEHLERT: I mean, if there`s any person in America who should never
use that word --
HAYES: A huge part of this too, which is like -- it`s just running --
it`s this very cynical way of essentially trying to tickle these certain
fear neurons in the base core audience, which is like you need us because
they`re out to get you. And they`re coming and to me, there`s an absolute
connection between that psychology, which is that you`re embattled. You`re
inside and I said this before, you`re inside the plantation house and Matt
Turner is at the door. That`s the deep fear you`re getting at, right?
There`s a connection with that and stand your ground laws and the NRA,
and all the stockpiling of weapons, and all the entire paranoid delusional
architecture of the world constructed for themselves, which is based on
this imminent race violence, race war that the scary blacks are going to
get you. And that to me is such a disgusting and irresponsible instinct in
American citizens to cultivate as a matter of selling your product.
REID: They even did it with the protests, assuming these blacks are
going to riot. I mean, this constant hatred and fear of African-Americans
that runs through the far right, it`s a problem that they`re --
HAYES: And I genuinely think the vast majority of Americans are so
much better than that, I really do.
MSNBC contributor Joy Reid, Eric Boehlert, from Media Matters -- thank
REID: Thank you.
HAYES: Coming up, if you like the NYPD`s stop and frisk policy,
you`re going to love the guy being floated as the next head of the
Department of Homeland Security.
HAYES: You will not believe the man being talked about to replace
Janet Napolitano for secretary of homeland security. We`ll fill you in,
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Ray Kelly`s done an
extraordinary job in New York, and the federal government partners a lot
with New York, because obviously our concerns about terrorism often times
are focused on big city targets. And I think Ray Kelly`s one of the best
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That was President Obama discussing New York City Police
Commissioner Ray Kelly as the potential new head of the Department of
Homeland Security. It was announced last week that current Homeland
Security Chief Janet Napolitano know will depart in September. Since then,
a number of top politicos, including Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer and
Republican Congressman Peter King have pushed aggressively for Ray Kelly to
be named as a replacement.
But it`s hard to think of a worse choice for this job or a more off
message political signal for the president to send to supporters during
this of all weeks. Just yesterday, Attorney General Eric Holder told the
crowd at the NAACP convention about being racially profiled while running
to catch a movie despite doing nothing wrong. That`s quite the contrast
with New York City`s top cop who`s overseen the most massive profiling
operation in the country.
The data of the new NYPD stop and frisk program speaks for itself.
Last year, there were nearly 533,000 stops under the program, 9.7 percent
of those stopped were white, more than 90 percent were nonwhite. And only
6 percent of stops resulted in arrests.
The program is problematic that the Department of Justice endorsed an
independent monitor to oversee its operations. But that is just the tip of
Ray Kelly is someone who called out the Bush administration for not
conducting enough warrantless wiretaps. Spied on protester, peaceful
protesters at 2004 Republican National Convention, allowed the CIA to embed
with the NYPD, a move opposed by the CIA inspector general, and oversaw a
sprawling creepy spying program on area Muslims.
In the middle of several long, national discussions about privacy,
government spying and racial profiling, it`s impossible to imagine a
candidate who would send a worse message about the president`s values than
Joining me now is now Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, Democrat from New
York. As a former New York state assemblyman, he helped pass a law that
prohibits the New York City Police Department from maintaining a database
on personal information for people who were stopped and frisked but not
charged with a violation or crime.
And, Congressman, my question is, first, to you is, do you think Ray
Kelly`s record in New York City particularly as it pertains to stop and
frisk makes him a poor choice to head up the DHS?
REP. HAKEEM JEFFRIES (D), NEW YORK: Well, listen, Chris. Ray Kelly
is an experienced law enforcement professional. He`s been a good
administrator and perhaps I could support his potential appointment to his
position in the absence of the massive aggressive stop and frisk program
that he`s run, and the unconstitutional Muslim surveillance program.
But that`s kind of like saying, I had a good year, if you don`t count
the winter, spring and fall. We can`t divorce his tenure as police
commissioner without looking at the fact that he has presided over the most
significant, organized of racial profiling that exist in the country,
hundreds of thousands of people stopped, questioned, frisked, embarrassed,
humiliated, and some cases, even brutalized each and every year. The
majority of folks you just pointed out have done nothing wrong and happen
to be black and Latino.
Besides that, stop and frisk program that continues to be in effect
today, although we`re hopeful that a court will so find it
unconstitutional, as you also mentioned, Chris, Ray Kelly until 2010
presided over a massive electronic database that contained we believe more
than a million names of innocent, law-abiding individuals who were stopped,
questioned and frisked but let go because they`ve done nothing wrong.
Nonetheless, Ray Kelly decided it made sense to take their names and their
personal information and subject them to the possibility of permanent
criminal surveillance and suspension.
HAYES: Congressman, let me say this -- we reached out to Ray Kelly,
asked them to come on. We never heard back from them. But his defenders
will say, pointing at all this, the record speaks for itself. Crime is
down in New York City. And this is amazing and there hasn`t been a
terrorist attack in the city since 9/11, and much of that has to do with
Ray Kelly`s leadership and his brass tacks, hard-nosed approach.
What do you say of that?
JEFFRIES: Well, stop and frisk, of course, has nothing to do wit the
fact that crime is down in New York City. Crime has been on the decline
for the last 20 years, beginning interestingly enough, during the last two
years of the Dickens administration in `92 and `93, when Ray Kelly was
police commissioner who at that time embraced community policing and began
this dramatic decline in crime opinion.
There`s a 90 percent error rate in the stop and frisk program. No
corporation in America would tolerate such an error rate. You can`t argue
based on the numbers that it has an effect on the decrease in crime in New
And so, I don`t think there`s any factually based argument or any case
to make. He should get credit as the mayor should for the continued
decline in crime, but these violations of civil rights and civil liberties
that he`s presided over, both as it relates to the Muslim surveillance
program and the stop and frisk program cannot be excused.
HAYES: A few details about that surveillance program of area Muslims,
in one report, an undercover officer describes accompanying 18 Muslim
students from City College of New York on a whitewater rafting trip in
Upstate New York in April 21st, 2008. Officers noted names of attendees
who were officers of the Muslim student association unit. These are
completely nonviolent Muslim students who have an undercover officer with
them on their camping trip.
And this is something that Ray Kelly sanctioned at a time when
Americans are wondering about the levels of the national government, what
message would it send to have him running DHS?
JEFFRIES: Well, it`s precisely the wrong message. In fact, earlier
today, at the Judiciary Committee hearing there was unanimous or at least
significant bipartisan support and concern for the notion that we`ve seen
at the federal level with respect to this massive collection of phone
records on tens of millions of Americans. And so, there`s got to be an
effective balance between national security or effective law enforcement on
the one hand and a healthy respect for our civil liberties on the other.
Ray Kelly during his tenure as police commissioner under Michael
Bloomberg has consistently disrespected that balance and that`s why I think
he would be a poor choice for secretary of homeland security.
HAYES: Congressman Hakeem Jeffries of New York, thank you so much.
JEFFRIES: Thank you.
HAYES: OK, here`s a fun fact -- the state fish of Wyoming is called
the cutthroat trout? What does that have to do with the way Liz Cheney
entered into the Senate race there for 2014? I don`t know, but it sure
seems apropos, doesn`t it?
Don`t go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LIZ CHENEY, DICK CHENEY`S DAUGHTER: Hi, I`m Liz Cheney. Over the
last several years, citizens across our great state have urged me to
consider running for the Senate in 2014.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That, of course, was Liz Cheney, people pleaser (ph),
announcing by way of YouTube yesterday she will bow to the great pressure
of the people of Wyoming and run for the senate next year.
But here`s thing -- there`s not an open U.S. Senate seat in Wyoming
next year. The seat she`s running for is occupied by someone from her own
Republican Mike Enzi, who`s serving his third term and who, it just so
happens, h announced his own intentions to run for another term yesterday.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
SEN. MIKE ENZI (R), WYOMING: It`s kind of interesting, about 30
minutes after I put out a release saying that I intend to run, she put out
one saying she was running. She said that if I ran, she wasn`t going to
run. But obviously that wasn`t correct.
REPORTER: Did she call you, sir?
ENZI: No, she didn`t. She called me a long time ago and said she was
REPORTER: What`s your relationship with her?
ENZI: I thought we were friends.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HAYES: Now, there are a few things we should all keep in mind about
this development in Wyoming politics, besides the fact that Liz Cheney is
apparently a really crappy friend. Ms. Cheney is truly one of the most
odious presences in American politics today.
Liz Cheney, for example, is responsible for the shameless far right
pressure group that cast Justice Department lawyers that were called upon
to represent Guantanamo prisoners as al Qaeda sympathizers, the same group
that helped lead the charge against the Muslim community center in Lower
Manhattan, cleverly if completely inaccurately, nicknamed by the far right
as the Ground Zero mosque.
Just a few months ago, she all but accused the president of being an
anti-American agent, writing, quote, "The president has so effectively
diminished American strength abroad there`s no question whether this was
Last year, she went even further, suggesting that by supporting
defense cuts, the president was basically working for the Taliban.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHENEY: What President Obama is doing is something that America`s
enemies, the Taliban, al Qaeda, you know, have been unable to do, which is
to decimate the fighting capability of this nation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: If you ask Liz Cheney what with all this pro al Qaeda, Taliban
sympathizing, you can`t blame the fringe crazies, for thinking President
Obama must be a secret Kenyan, Muslim terrorist plant. Here`s how she
explained the all American phenomenon of birthers back in 2009.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHENEY: People are uncomfortable with having -- for the first time
ever I think -- a president who seems so reluctant to defend the nation
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Liz Cheney does not just argue her point of view. She boils
up a stew of the most repugnant factless fear mongering propaganda to rile
up the darkest forces of the far political fringe.
As an added bonus, she is in the global warming stake because of snow
caucus as well. Now, whatever you think about her father, you got to allow
Dick Cheney this. He came about his infamy honestly. He is a real up by
the bootstraps kind of villain.
But, Liz Cheney is the knockoff version. She is a legacy case. A
toxic example of what affirmative action for over privileged white people
looks like. She bought a house in Wyoming last year, and as far as anyone
could tell the justification for her campaign is that she would very much
like to be a U.S. senator, thank you very much.
And, presumably, her dad will be helping her raise money with his
fabulously wealthy and powerful friends. To be perfectly honest, there is
no real reason to care about this race on its face or a race that will
probably be decided by fewer people than simultaneously did the "Gangnam
Style" horse dance with Psy in Seoul last fall.
But, here is what is fascinating about it anyway. Liz Cheney`s
Candidacy represents a return to the 200 proof Neil Kahnism into the
Republican Party. She will be spending the next year playing to a
conservative base that has gone increasingly anti-interventionist as our
Rand Paul in terms of more policy.
So, what`s about to unfold in Wyoming is a captivating test case as to
whether the republican base can beat back the Neil (Kahn) aristocracy.
Joining me now is Matt Welch, editor-in-chief of the libertarian magazine
"Reason", co-author of the book, "The Declaration Of Independence: How
Libertarian Politics Can Fix What`s Wrong With America.
Well, Liz Cheney is what is wrong with America, and I`m hoping that
the Wyoming libertarian streak is going to beat her back. Because, I
genuinely think that one of the most fascinating elements of center by
politics is that the base is no, no, no, nowhere near as interventionist as
the oligarchy that runs foreign policy. And, here we have got a perfect
MATT WELCH, REASON MAGAZINE EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Yes. And, this is
particularly true in Montana, Wyoming kind of big sky country, the rocky
mountain sort of area. We have had in American politics the last three
years, a very interesting thing happening in the Republican Party, which is
that there has been a series of primary fights going on.
It`s not happening in the Democratic Party right now. Almost all of
them since about May 2010 had been in one direction. The club for growth,
freedom works tea party types. The Rand Pauls, the Marco Rubios going
against the establishment as represented by Dick Cheney, Mitch Mcconnell
and other people. And, they have been winning systematically. They have
not -- the other side has not been initiating these fights. This is the
first time at least to my knowledge --
WELCH: -- where we have the establishment initiating the fights. The
question is why?
HAYES: OK. So, why is it? And, what I see. I thought it was
interesting. She was talking about defense cuts there. There has been a
whole bunch of high profile clashes between particularly Rand Paul and John
McCain and Lindsey Graham, which kind of represents this split in the
Republican Party around foreign policy about arming Syrian rebels about the
defense sequester about drones, right?
We have seen these clashes. This seems to be an intervention on the
side of the McCain-Graham arm of the party.
WELCH: Yes. Think about what we call the angry birds versus the
wacko birds splitter --
WELCH: And, John McCain and Lindsay Graham don`t have juice any more.
When Lindsey Graham goes out and says, "Well, I think we should boycott the
Olympics in Russia." People are just rolling their eyes at him at this
point. There is not a really good spokesman for that part of the party
John McCain, although he still has a lot of influence, he just doesn`t
have a lot of juice. If you went to the republican convention in 2012, all
of the sort of buzz was around these insurgent types. And these insurgent
types are much less interventionist. And, so this is the first case. They
want to have a 46-year-old who has a little bit of a spring in her step and
some name recognition to be able to get on the senate floor and make these
HAYES: And, what is interesting here is that this is a proxy board
that has literally nothing to do with Mike Enzi.
HAYES: I mean Mike Enzi is completely just in a wrong place, not that
I care one way or the other on Mike Enzi. In fact, I think primary fights
are good. People should have contested elections. People should run their
oppose -- No, I agree, everyone go run, run for office.
But, here`s Rand Paul kind of firing back the first shot on this. He
says when I heard Liz Cheney was running for senate. I wondered if she was
running in her own state of Virginia, which makes me think that he
understands precisely what this is about.
HAYES: This is a proxy war against his people.
WELCH: We have been talking to some people off the record about all
of this and saying, "What is this about?" And, that their indications are
it is precisely this. "We want -- there needs to be some spokes man on the
senate floor or in American politics in general who are ready to fight off
the Rand Paul wing of the party." Think about it. Rand Paul has already
co-opted Mitch McConnell.
WELCH: Right? Mitch McConnell who brought in Dick Cheney, who
brought in all these Neil Kahns to try to fight off Rand Paul In may 2010
has hired Rand Paul`s Political team to run his re-election in Kentucky.
And, he is basically doing Rand Paul`s bidding. So, they need other --
HAYES: So, here is the fascinating thing. So, the way that Liz --
the question to Liz Cheney is, how do you win a race where you represent
the establishment? How do you get the grassroots, the hastiest on your
side? I think the answer is, "I`m going to out Obama hate anyone."
HAYES: That`s the card she is going to play. Here she is making her
case for how she`s growing to run this race.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHENEY: Instead of cutting deals with the president`s liberal allies,
we should be opposing them every step of the way. I`m running because I
believe it is necessary for a new generation of leaders to step up to the
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Right? Like no cutting deals on his -- Mike Enzi`s cutting
deals. Of course, she would cut deals on everything from surveillance to
drones to arming the Syrian rebels to, you know, sanction in Iran. I mean
there is a million votes you can imagine Senator Liz Cheney voting on the
side of the White House on foreign policy.
WELCH: Yes. What she is trying to do, and she might have some
success in doing it, there`s been preliminary grassroots support for her.
I mean the Cheney family name has some resonance in grassroots. It is not
all negative, some of it is. You can`t think of a bigger middle finger
pointing in the direction of the Democratic Party. So if that is animating
you when you wake up in the morning, then you say "Why not, Dick Cheney?" -
HAYES: Well, this segment didn`t help at all? I should keep all this
to myself. Matt Welsh from Reason Magazine, thank you so much.
WELCH: Thank you very much.
HAYES: If you`ve managed to overcome your depression after what the
Supreme Court did to the voting rights act, congratulations. And, if not,
there is some hope to report on tonight. I explain that ahead.
HAYES: Coming up, after the Supreme Court voted, gutted the voting
rights act and dumped it on the streets of the Capitol for congress to deal
with, some progress from Capitol Hill, of all places, in reviving it.
Senator Amy Klobuchar will be here with a report coming up.
HAYES: Remember just a few weeks ago when the Supreme Court took the
dead carcass of the voting rights act after having just ripped out its
heart, dragged the dead carcass to the steps of the Capitol and said
basically, "Too bad. Good luck with that." Well, today, congress which
had reauthorized the voting rights act with overwhelming bipartisan support
under President George W. Bush took a step toward saying, we got this.
In the current climate, it may be a tough road. But, the senate
judiciary committee began hearings on re-writing the preclearance
requirements of the voting rights act. And, senators began by welcoming
two congressmen, a democrat and a republican, who had been so vital in
crafting the last reauthorization. Congressman John Lewis and Jim
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN LEWIS, (D) GEORGIA REPRESENTATIVE: To this day, I truly
believe that we are a better country, a better people because of the voting
rights act. We made progress, we have come a great distance, but the
deliberate systematic attempt to make it harder and more difficult for many
people to participate in a democratic process still exists to this very
SEN. JIM SENSENBRENNER, (R) WISCONSIN REPRESENTATIVE: I believe that
the voting rights act is the most successful of all of our important civil
rights act that have been passed since the mid 1950s and actually
LEWIS: Sometimes the differences between the house and the senate are
the difference between here and the moon. Hopefully, not on this one.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The push to breathe new life into the voting rights act was
echoed just yesterday. By Attorney General Eric Holder speaking before the
NAACP and by former secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaking to the
nation`s largest African-American sorority, Delta Sigma Theta at their
convention in Washington.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: Preserving fairness and equality
in our voting system is one we can, we should and we must fix. And, unless
congress acts you know and I know, more obstacles are on their way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now is Senator Amy Klobuchar, Democrat from
Minnesota and a member of the judiciary committee. And, senator, I want to
start out with the skeptic`s case and I want you to persuade me I shouldn`t
SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR, (D) MINNESOTA REPRESENTATIVE: I`m so surprised.
HAYES: OK. Here is the skeptic`s case. Forget republicans and
president`s office, just think about from like a game theory perspective.
The horse trading and geopolitics of trying to come up with a new
definition of which parts of the country are going to be selected to face
this sort of heightened scrutiny while other parts aren`t.
How do you cobble together an electoral majority that actually crafts
that in a way that could get enough votes when you don`t have the
remarkable conditions of 1965 when the first formula was put into place.
KLOBUCHAR: Well, I would say, first of all, we coddled together that
coalition for the immigration bill in the United States Senate. And, a lot
of that was because the people of this country said they wanted to see a
change. With the voting rights act, you had today a republican congressman
from Wisconsin and a civil rights leader John Lewis, congressman as well
sitting together saying, we have to reauthorize this act.
What the Supreme Court has done is left the door open. What they have
said is, you can you come back and get some data together that shows there
is still problems. And, I think, Chris, you had on the show many times
people that have demonstrated there are still problems.
HAYES: There is no question.
KLOBUCHAR: While it is not going to be easy, if the goal is to look
at the preclearance provisions and put together the data to show that we
still need them, as well as maybe doing some new things.
HAYES: So, there is no question. I mean, I think you and I are in
agreement that this act is absolutely still needed. We will be talking to
someone in North Carolina in just a bit that shows in very stark terms, why
your act is still needed. Why preclearance is still needed.
But, Congressman Sensenbrenner who to his tremendous credit who has
been great campaigning asset, sometimes the difference between this chamber
and the others is the difference between earth and the moon. I mean you --
you know what the house of representatives is like as well as I do, and if
you want to take the immigration bill as a metaphor, I mean look what
that`s run into on the other side.
KLOBUCHAR: Yes, it has run into some trouble but it is not over yet.
And, you can look at the numbers nearly in the strong votes in the house in
2006. This is in fact in 1990. This is 2006 and in the senate it passed
And, I think there are some opportunities. One of the things that I
brought up today at the hearing was that with the waiting lines we were
seeing, national survey that showed in the 2012 election, 24 percent of
Hispanic voters had to wait 30 minutes or more in line, 22 percent of
African voters -- African-American voters had to wait more than 30 minutes
in line, only 9 percent of white voters. And, that just gives you an
example of a deterrent problem with waiting that is going on right now.
HAYES: So --
KLOBUCHAR: Second thing, Congressman Ellison and I have a way to
resolve this, same day registration. Look at the top five of the top six
voting turnout states minus number one have same day registration.
And, they are not all democratic states. There are states like Iowa
that has a republican governor, states like Maine, fear sense of
independent. The bottom 18 states for voting turnout. The bottom 18
states, none of them have same day registration.
So, there are a lot of possibilities if our goal as the republican
city commissioner who was on today, who was on the panel, she said today,
when I asked her that same question, Chris.
I said, "How could we get this coalition together in your part of the
republican party?" She said, "We have to remember this is not about
politics. This is about our democracy and it is about America and that is
how we have to appeal to the other side because we have to get this done.
HAYES: I thought that was very powerful testimony. Here, take a
listen to it. You can here it yourself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LUZ URBAEZ WEINBERG, REPUBLICAN CITY COMMISSIONER IN AVENTURA,
FLORIDA: Section 5 has no peer. Section 2 alone is not sufficient and I
cannot stress that enough. It is after the fact policy and it is a cost
prohibitive after the fact policy. Without preclearance, without section 5
and only section 2 is hunting season for discriminatory voting practices.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Section 5 of course is part of restrict down section 2, the
right for individuals after the fact of sue but of course the damages have
been done. So, here`s my final skeptic case for you. You are a lawyer of
tremendous esteem before you became a senator. I have read that the
Supreme Court`s decision and I can`t tell you what kind of record or what
kind of formula would pass the threshold that these five justices have
given you. Do you have any sense on what`s going to be good enough for
across the street?
KLOBUCHAR: No, Chris, I think that frustration was expressed at the
hearing today by Senator Blumenthal and others. And, the issue here is
that this was a record that members of the senate and congress have relied
on overwhelmingly 15, 000 pages of their record.
But, I think what the court may clear is they want updated data, that
some of the data was old. I think we can find that data and be able to
show that there are problems today. Look at what happens since the court
deficient. Texas already putting restrictions on voter I.D`s. A number of
those states have already come out.
KLOBUCHAR: We barely defeated a proposal in Minnesota on voter I.D.
that would have played it much more difficult for people to vote, but we
did it. We did it at the ballot box. So, I actually think there is some
real opportunities here. If your goal is to get voters to vote, which is
what we have always believed in our country, which would differentiates us
from so many places around the world that don`t let people vote. We have
been proud of that, and we have to translate that pride into action to make
sure we reauthorizes bill.
HAYES: Senator Amy Klobuchar, thank you so much.
KLOBUCHAR: Thank you.
HAYES: Meanwhile, as the senator just noted, republicans in North
Carolina are wasting no time in taking advantage of the Supreme Court`s
decision to strike down a key portion of the voting right`s act. I`ll talk
to someone who is on the ground there about what this means coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROSANELL EATON, 92-YEAR-OLD NC RESIDENT: I was only 18 years old
finishing high school. The voter I.D. was designed to make it harder to
vote. Here I am at 92 years old doing the same battling. I am fed up and
fired up. Fed up, fired up. Fed up, fired up. Thank you so much.
HAYES: That was 92-year-old North Carolina resident, Rosanell Eaton
of Franklin County, North Carolina, which is one of the 40 of North
Carolina`s 100 counties that were subject to section 5 of the voting rights
act. She was speaking at North Carolina`s 11th consecutive Moral Monday
Rally this week.
Because, Ms. Eaton is worried about signals that republicans in her
state plan to push through a package of legislation aimed at restricting
voting rights including a new voter I.D. law, and measures that would put
an end to early voting, Sunday voting and same day registration.
This provision has serious implications for North Carolina`s political
future and for access to polls in that state. For instance more than 1.2
million democrats in North Carolina cast ballots during the 17 days of
early voting in 2012. Compare that to about 800,000 republicans.
So, let`s assume that most of those million plus democrats who voted
early in the tar hill state voted for President Obama, that means early
votes accounted for as much as a half of the 2 million votes Obama got in
North Carolina in 2012. This is what republicans in North Carolina are
pushing for to get rid of that practice. Now, that they control both the
state legislature and the governor`s mansion.
Joining me here at the table is Ari Berman contributing writer of the
"Nation", an author of the book "Herding Donkeys: The Fight To Rebuilt the
Democratic Party And Reshape American Politics." And, joining me from
North Carolina is Representative Larry Hall, democratic leader in North
Carolina house of representatives.
And, Representative Hall, I will begin with you, what is on the
legislative agenda right now in North Carolina. This seems like it is
coming down very quick. Is it going to happen this week, and can you do
anything legislatively to stop it?
REP. LARRY HALL, (D) NORTH CAROLINA REPRESENTATIVE: Well, good
evening, Chris. And, certainly we can do something to at least make sure
the citizens know what`s going to happen. They have the numbers and they
have decided what they are going to do, by hook or by crook, and they are
going to do it in the dead of night if possible, and sneak it by the people
during the light of day. So, we may not be able to stop it, but we`re
certainly going to shine the light on it.
HAYES: Do people know this is going on? Do they know that these
packages of four provisions are going to happen? Are going to be debated?
Are they going to be debated? How is this going to be done if it gets
SEN. HALL: Well, Chris, you know, the slight of hand is what`s in
vogue in the legislature here in North Carolina. So, we had a bill this
week, 16 hours. It went from being approved to a press conference just
being on the floor. And, we got 20 minutes of debate time --
SEN. HALL: -- of which they took more than half. So, if they follow
the same pattern, this could be a 10-minute bill in the House of
Representatives. They could pass it in the senate by laying it on the
table and the amendments and go ahead and call the question in a few
minutes, get it to the house by express messenger.
If they are sick, follow the same pattern, we could have a 10-minute
debate and it could be at the governor`s desk before the end of the day.
So, that is how they are playing their role as good government here in
HAYES: And, representative, it is not just your state or you have
been covering the voting rights fight. We are seeing this across the
southern states particularly that were covered, are moving with stunning
alacrity to get stuff, to get voting restrictions put into place.
SEN. HALL: Well, absolutely. Right after the decision of five
southern states rushed to implement laws including laws like Texas law that
were judged to be discriminatory by the federal courts, and now we are
going into effect without section five.
And, there`s a strange disconnect because there`s a moment where
there`s a wave of voter suppression efforts. But, what we really should be
expanding the voting right act in reaction to that, we`re struggling just
to resurrect it. In North Carolina now, they have a green light for voter
HAYES: Are all these states just -- how are all these states and --
Representative Hall, I will come back to you in a second. Ari, how are
these states justifying. It looks from the outside, it look like so
obvious and right. They don`t want people that are not going to vote for
them to vote.
ARI BERMAN, CONTRIBUTING WRITER FOR "THE NATION": Well, they are
making the same arguments they have always made. I mean they are making
arguments about voter fraud, about the same deal of ballots.
I mean it is funny. They made those same arguments against the voting
rights act in 1965. They failed, so they are now trying it out again at
the very moment, they`re gutting the voting rights act.
HAYES: Representative Hall, you`re -- some of the people in North
Carolina have been protesting in these Moral Monday`s Protests. It is a
way to supplement the fact that there`s not really a legislative majority
or a sufficient number of representatives to block things.
Is that having a political toll? Are you hearing your colleagues talk
about it? Are they taking a hit in the press that`s going to make them
think twice about the incredibly reaction airy agenda they are pursuing.
SEN. HALL: Well, certainly the governor`s numbers have gone down
about 14 points over the last three or four weeks. And, also the state
republicans in the state house and senate, their numbers have gone down to
the point that they`re ten points below house and senate democrats. So,
the public has taken notice. They see what is going on and these fellows
are trying to do everything they can at night and then get out of town.
And, so, they will try it again as quick as they can, and that is their
HAYES: Representative Hall, what I will say to you is this, we will
keep our eye on this and as soon as that vote`s going to happen, we want to
know because we want to let our viewers know about it and talk to you about
it. Ari Berman from the Nation and North Carolina State Representative
Larry Hall, thank you both. That is "All In" for this evening. The Rachel
Maddow show starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
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