PoliticsNation, Thursday, October 3rd, 2013
Read the transcript from the Thursday show
October 3, 2013
Guest: Eugene O`Donnell; Luke Russert; Cynthia Tucker, Ed Rendell, Goldie
Taylor, Krystal Ball, E.J. Dionne
REV. AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: Thank you Ed and thanks to you for
Tonight`s Lead, Breaking News from Washington, we are waiting on live
briefing on today`s dramatic car chase and shooting on Capitol Hill.
That briefing expected to include updates from the Secret Service, DC
police and Capitol Hill police talking about the incident today that`s
started at the White House and ended in gunfire on Capitol Hill.
A TV crew captured part of that chase.
The suspect in the car a woman was shot and killed by police a few
minutes later. For witnesses the violence shattered a quiet day in the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police surrounded the vehicle had their guns
drawn, had a .
REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: The suspect in the car, a woman,
was shot and killed by police a few minutes later. For witnesses the
violence shattered a quiet day in the nation`s capital.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FRANK SCHWING, WITNESS: Police surrounded the vehicle, had their guns
drawn, had the passenger`s door open, telling the person to get out. At
that point the sedan slammed in reverse, smacked the cruiser behind it, did
a 180, and peeled off on the south side of the capitol and disappeared
around there. A couple minutes later we heard a bang on the opposite side
of the capitol.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: After the gunfire people working on Capitol Hill heard this
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Capitol police. There is a report of gunfire on
Capitol Hill. If you are in an office building, shelter in place. Close,
lock, and remove away from doors and windows. If you are outside of an
office cover away from the area.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: One Capitol Hill police officer was hurt. Apparently when
he was struck by the suspect`s car. He was airlifted to the hospital.
Officials say there was a young child in the car with the woman during the
police chase. No word on that child`s condition.
Joining me now is NBC`s Luke Russert, who was on Capitol Hill when all
this occurred, NBC`s investigative correspondent Michael Isikoff, and
Eugene O`Donnell, professor of law and police study at John Jay college of
Michael, as we await this briefing, what do we know about this woman,
and how did it all start?
MICHAEL ISIKOFF, NBC NEWS NATIONAL INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Well,
first of all, we have not -- we are not using her name right now because --
until police say so. We are not going to report her name. But she is a
34-year-old woman who lived in Connecticut and police are searching her
What possible motivation she had at this point we don`t know.
Obviously, there are going to be questions about whether there was any kind
of mental health problems in her background just as there was with the
Washington Navy yard shooter. But I think what`s significant at this
point, which NBC News was the first to report here, is she did not fire any
shots in this incident. All the shots came from law enforcement. She did
not have a gun.
SHARPTON: She was unarmed?
ISIKOFF: She was unarmed. Now, that doesn`t mean that the police who
fired the shots were unjustified in doing --
SHARPTON: Hold on one minute, Michael. Let`s go live to the press
briefing. We will come back to you, Michael.
ED DONOVAN, SECRET SERVICE: At an outer perimeter checkpoint of the
White House at 15th street and E street northwest. The vehicle then fled
east on Pennsylvania avenue. There were multiple crime scenes as a result
of the vehicle fleeing. There were multiple shots fired at several
different locations. This case is under investigation by the metropolitan
police department with assistance fm e U.S. Capitol police, secret service,
federal bureau of investigation.
That`s all I have, but I`ll take a few questions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Excuse me, sir. Is there any way this
could have been an accident, whether or not she didn`t know where she was
DONOVAN: This incident is under investigation. But at this point an
unauthorized vehicle attempted to gain access at a very outer perimeter
checkpoint. I want to stress that. This was an outer perimeter checkpoint
of the White House. Beyond that checkpoint there are multiple other
checkpoints that someone would have to go through. But there is this
unauthorized vehicle approached the checkpoint. Our officers acted
appropriately. The vehicle then fled and in fleeing struck one of our
officers as it departed that initial scene.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: What is the ethnicity of the deceased?
DONOVAN: I don`t think that`s being released at this point.
DONOVAN: That is also under investigation. But uniformed division
officers and capitol police officers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Where were the shots fired? Were the
shots fired at the White House?
DONOVAN: There were no shots fired at the White House. These other
locations is where shots were fired. And that, again, it`s all under
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: When were the shots fired --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: -- the officer that was struck?
DONOVAN: I`ll let the chief of capitol police talk about that. I`ll
turn it over at this point to the --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Can you identify yourself again?
DONOVAN: Ed Donovan from secret service -- Chief.
CHIEF KIM DINE, UNITED STATES CAPITOL POLICE: Good evening. Kim
Dine, chief of the United States capitol police. You have already heard
the preliminary information regarding what happened at the White House.
Subsequent to that, our officers attempted to make a stop at Garfield
circle. The vehicle eluded them and continued on up behind us up 1st and
constitution avenue. It appears our officer in an attempt to pursue the
vehicle struck a barricade. Ultimately, the vehicle stopped at 2nd and
Maryland northeast. Where we were able to capture the suspect.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Do you have the status of the officer
DINE: I personally spoke with the officer and he`s doing well. He`s
a 23-year veteran of the United States capitol police, and he`s doing very
well. Thank you for asking.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Is he at the hospital or -- how
seriously injured is he?
DINE: He was at the hospital when I spoke with him, but he`s going to
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: How was he injured?
DINE: I don`t have his specific injuries.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: How was he injured?
DINE: His vehicle apparently struck the barricade behind us. It
appears all around the capitol the security worked exceptionally well. We
did have a very brief lockdown of the capitol, and we were able to kind of
lock things down and clear the event extremely quickly. Keeping everybody
safe. Notifying everybody of what was going on. And we actually cleared
the scene rather quickly. As you know, we had briefing probably within the
hour of what was going on. We obviously are investigating the incident.
We, I mean multiple law enforcement agencies. And this appears to be an
isolated singular matter. At in point no nexus to terrorism. Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Can you rule out terrorism?
DINE: Pardon me?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: How can you rule out terrorism?
DINE: From the facts and circumstances we have thus far it appears
there`s no relation --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Is the deceased of Somali descent?
DINE: Are you asking me or telling me?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Somali descent? An African-American
DINE: We`re actually not talking about the suspect at this time.
DINE: We are not releasing any information on the suspect at this --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: How did she get past --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: What is the motive in.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Can you talk about the child in the car
and where the child is now?
DINE: My understanding is there was a 1-year-old child in the car. I
believe, actually, one of our officers initially rescued the child and took
the child to initial medical care in the vicinity here. And then the child
was taken to the hospital.
DINE: Pardon me?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: The barricades, did she get through them
DINE: We`re obviously still investigating that. Let me turn it over
to Chief Lanier from the metropolitan police department.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Was the child a boy or a girl?
DINE: I do not have that information.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Was the suspect armed --
CHIEF CATHY LANIER, METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPARTMENT: Let me try to
answer a couple of questions real quick. I`ll tell you up front there are
certain questions we`re not going to answer. We`re not going to answer any
questions about the suspect at this point. All the information that we`re
giving you is preliminary. There is some video that has been released. We
would caution you that that video only captures the incident -- a small
part of this incident. There is things that were not captured on video
before and after, obviously.
As of right now, we do know that there were shots fired and at least
two locations during this pursuit. The pursuit was from 15th and e down to
100 block of Maryland avenue. So the pursuit went several blocks and
involved both United States secret service and United States capitol
Right now, the suspect in the vehicle we do know was struck by gunfire
and at this point has been pronounced. So, the suspect has been pronounced
at this point. The child is approximately a year old and is in good
condition and in protective custody.
Right now, it is all very preliminary. We don`t know which officers
fired, how many rounds were fired. I will say that both at the White House
and at the capitol, the security perimeters worked. They did exactly what
they were supposed to do, and they stopped a suspect from breaching the
security perimeters both in a vehicle -- in a vehicle at both locations.
I would say both of the United States secret service and capitol
police officers, from what I have seen so far in this investigation, acted
heroically in trying to stop this suspect from entering the security
perimeters at both locations.
We have two officers that are injured, one from capitol and one from
secret service. Fortunately, both of them will be OK. But two officers
injured just doing their job. So I will take a few questions, but I`m not
going to answer any questions about the investigation as pertains to
evidence or pertains to the suspect at this point.
LANIER: The suspect, the last gunfire was in the 100 block of
Maryland avenue, and the suspect was pronounced sometime later.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Chief, do you think this could have
been an accident, or do you think it was intentional?
LANIER: All the information that we have right now is this does not
appear to be in any way an accident. This was a lengthy pursuit. There
were multiple vehicles that were rammed. There was officers that were
struck and two security perimeters that were attempted to be breached. So
it does not appear in any way this an accident.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: (INAUDIBLE)
LANIER: We don`t know that yet. I`m sorry?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Why aren`t you releasing more information
LANIER: We`re not going to release any information about the suspect
or anybody else. I mean, first of all, we would make next of kin
notifications before we release that information.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Was she armed?
LANIER: We`re not going to comment on any information regarding
evidence at this point.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: (INAUDIBLE) from the White House that
this person traveled to get to Maryland avenue. Where was the car going?
Where were the different places the shots were fired?
LANIER: I can tell you there was two places where shots were fired
we`re aware of at this point. This is still preliminary. The pursuit
started at 15th and E street, came down Pennsylvania avenue, at some point
entered Garfield circle. There were shots fired after the suspect vehicle
rammed into a secret service vehicle. And then the vehicle continued on
1st street to constitution avenue, up constitution, around the barriers,
and then onto t the 100 block of Maryland avenue, where the vehicle crashed
and additional shots were fired there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: -- around the barrier?
LANIER: We`re not sure yet exactly. There was exact made with the
barriers we know at least one vehicle, we don`t know if there was other
vehicles, but we know the barriers did go up and we know at least one
vehicle did strike the barriers. We really won`t know that yet until we
finish the reconstruction.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: (INAUDIBLE).
LANIER: Right now the preliminary information is that both agencies
had officers that fired. I`ll take two more questions and then we`re done.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Who`s the lead of the investigation?
LANIER: The metropolitan police department will be investigating this
case. We are getting support from FBI, capitol police, and secret service.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Any verbal exchange with the suspect?
LANIER: I can`t comment on that at this point. I will take one more
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: So, how did it ultimately end? She
LANIER: The crash in the 100 block of Maryland avenue, and at that
point, this is very close to the security booth, security officers from the
capitol, there was another round of gunfire at that point. So that`s where
the pursuit terminated.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: How can terrorism has been ruled out?
It`s so preliminary.
LANIER: All we`re giving you right now is just the facts we know of
what has happened. I`m not ruling anything out at this point. I can tell
you I`m pretty confident this is not an accident. All right. Thank you.
DINE: Well, what I said was it does not appear to be. And I just
want to reiterate the heroic work of the United States capitol police
officers at multiple locations in addition to rescuing the child out of the
vehicle. At this location and at 2nd and Maryland northeast our officers
kept the perimeter secure and responded quickly and heroically and locked
the scenes down.
Thank you very much.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Any more briefings?
SHARPTON: Well, you`ve just seen a live briefing by representatives,
spokesman for the secret service as well as the Capitol Hill police, and of
course Chief Lanier of the metro police in Washington, D.C.
Let`s go back to our panel, Michael Isikoff and Luke Russert and
Mike, you were telling us about -- we have heard now from the three
levels of law enforcement. It`s an ongoing investigation. There seems to
be no terrorism at least at this point. They are seeing no connection to
terrorism. And there`s a 1-year-old child, as you were talking when the
briefing started, 1-year-old child in the car. They are not identifying
any relations between the child and the suspect. Am I right, Michael?
ISIKOFF: Well, they didn`t in the briefing, right. And they did make
pains to point out the police did rescue the 1-year-old child from the
vehicle and provided medical care. I think there was -- they kind of --
they did provide some information about where the shots are fired. They
said at two locations, one Garfield circle, which is in front of the
capitol, and then later a few blocks away on Maryland avenue.
But as we indicated before, although they didn`t exactly specify this,
all the shots appear to have come from law enforcement, not the woman
involved. Chief Lanier of the Washington police department made a point of
saying that the officers involved acted heroically to protect both the
White House and the capitol. So clearly from the standpoint of law
enforcement agencies at this point, the shots fired were entirely
The point I was going to make just before the briefing started is as
one law ebb enforcement source said to me, she may not have had a gun but
she was using the car as a weapon. So I think that`s going to be a big
factor in the inevitable investigations into what happened here.
SHARPTON: Let me go to you, Eugene O`Donnell. What did you hear in
EUGENE O`DONNELL, PROFESSOR, JOHN JAY COLLEGE: A little bit of
confusion, I have to say. This is what you would expect unfortunately in
this situation. You`ve got so many different agencies with different
roles, different protocols, different missions. And you know, one of the
worst fears you`d have in a situation like this is trying to get everyone
on the same page. Even in the news conference you could tell people were
kind of crossing each other and commenting.
So, I think this is one case where you want to not jump to
conclusions. You want to take a deep breath, see how the facts come in.
SHARPTON: Now, there seem to be questions about there was no shots
fired from the suspect but both Chief Lanier of metro police as well as the
spokesman for Capitol Hill police stressed that there was a long pursuit.
And going to Michael Isikoff`s comment that someone gave him that
they`re saying it was the vehicle itself could have been used as a weapon.
So this may or may not be a factor as they investigate the fact that this
suspect may have been unarmed.
ISIKOFF: The portion of this that we seem to be able to see on the
video does suggest that the car has being aimed at officers. Even the most
restrained police departments, when you have no choice, will authorize
deadly force. It does appear from that news conference there`s a secondary
event where there`s additional shooting and we would (INAUDIBLE).
SHARPTON: Let me go to you, Luke Russert. You were actually on
Capitol Hill when this happened. Give us a sense of what happened, how
people were responding. You hear gunfire in this kind of world that we
live in today, no one -- not knowing anything other than hearing gunfire,
what happened, Luke, and what was going on in the minds of the people there
on the hill?
LUKE RUSSERT, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: It was a harrowing experience,
Reverend Al. Around 2:20 p.m., I was in my office and the window overlooks
the west front of the capitol. That`s where the president is inaugurated
where all this happened.
I heard four loud booms. I then saw capitol police draw their weapons
and start running toward the noises they heard. Then they instructed
tourists who were on the grounds of the capitol where this incident had
occurred to get down on their stomachs and stay down. And then instructed
them to evacuate, to run away from the incident towards independence
avenue. So, I was able to see a few dozen tourists, men, women, and
children all sprinting to get out of harm`s way.
When we first originally heard the gunshots, we didn`t know if it was
a shootout, if someone had shot at the police. We at that time did not
know it was actually law enforcement participating in that. So, the
capitol went into lockdown mode. We were told the shelter in place. And I
also want to tell you, something very significant happened. The action
that was going on the house floor, you can say the people`s business, the
business of government came to a halt.
At 2:30, members of Congress actually had to shelter in place on the
house floor and some staffers in the speaker`s lobby were pushed on the
house floor because it`s a windowless area that`s more secure. So the
capitol police did all this. Congress was basically delayed on the house
side for an hour until this became a less tense situation. And I will say
one thing that I have been up here for a while that I have never seen at
all is a helicopter landed on the west front on the mall for folks who
visited D.C. That was the Medevac police helicopter which took this
officer out. That was also something which I think rattled some folks. It
showed the degree of seriousness of this situation.
But now it`s back to normal. The road behind me is where one walks to
go from the house to the Senate, vice versa. That`s now back open to
pedestrian traffic. And you saw the barrier system worked. There is not a
fence around the capitol, Reverend Al. This is basically officers respond
quickly if there`s an issue. In this case they did. And the perimeter
system seems to have worked.
SHARPTON: All right, Luke Russert, Michael Isikoff, and Eugene
O`Donnell, thanks for your time tonight.
We`ll be right back.
SHARPTON: There is no doubt that what happened today in Washington
was terrible. And instead of coming together, some used is as an excuse to
further divide us.
Shortly after report of shots fired, Republican Congressman Tim
Griffin tweeted quote "gunshots outside the capitol". Just one minute
later, he tweeted, stop the violent rhetoric President Obama, Chuck Schumer
and Nancy Pelosi, #disgusting.
The congressman later deleted the comment, and aversion of an apology.
But, is that really how low politics has gotten in this country?
Joining me now is Cynthia Tucker. Thanks for coming on the show
CYNTHIA TUCKER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Good to be here, Reverend.
SHARPTON: Blaming the president for violent rhetoric? I mean, what
is this congressman talking about, Cynthia?
TUCKER: Well, his hashtag was disgusting. He is disgusting. You
know, President Obama so rarely shows any anger. There are many Democrats
who wish he would in fact show some rhetoric that`s a bit more
inflammatory, but he hasn`t. About the strongest thing he`s said is he`s
exasperated. As are we all, by the way. So what violent rhetoric was
Griffin talking about?
Here we have a woman who apparently was troubled. We have no --
nothing that suggests there is any connection between what she did and what
is going on at the capitol. But Griffin couldn`t resist taking a pot shot
at the president.
SHARPTON: And then let me show you what he later issued. He issued
this statement later. Quote "no one but the shooter is to blame. But as I
have been saying for days, we all need to choose our words wisely because
violent rhetoric only coarsens our culture, creates an atmosphere of
insist, and is not helpful. I tweeted out of emotion but agree that the
timing was not helpful."
Not exactly an apology. First of all, the man called names,
#disgusting, and now he talks about he just spoke out of emotion and what
it`s doing to our culture. You have what we don`t know what the attack
was, and he immediately blames it on the president, Senator Schumer, and
congresswoman former speaker Pelosi, not even knowing what he`s talking
about, not even knowing in it was some, God forbid, terrorist attack. It
would have been those. It could have been those were the ones that were
TUCKER: Absolutely. And Reverend, I wish he would take this message
of incivility back to his colleagues in the House of Representatives in the
Republican caucus because that`s where all this incivility is coming from.
They call the president the most awful names, the vilest things. Among
that little group of tea party-driven representatives, if -- you know, they
go out and practically persuade their voters that the president is Satan`s
own, you know, handmaiden. And so, I wish he would take that message of
incivility back to them.
But Reverend, Griffin`s message wasn`t even the most appalling thing I
heard from Republicans. The most appalling was a representative from Texas
who attacked a park service ranger because a memorial was shut down.
SHARPTON: Yes. We are going to talk about that.
TUCKER: Now, who shut that down? He did.
SHARPTON: Yes. We`re going to talk about that.
Thank you, Cynthia Tucker, for your time this evening.
TUCKER: Good to be here, Rev.
SHARPTON: And coming up, just as she said, a Republican congressman
caught on tape confronting and blaming an innocent park ranger for the
shutdown. It`s as low as it gets.
And is Speaker Boehner caving? Some big news tonight. He is talking
about a looming default.
Stay with us.
SHARPTON: Republicans have shown they aren`t too great at governing.
But one thing they are good at, blaming other people for things they have
done. Just watch Texas congressman Randy Neugebauer blame a park ranger
for keeping people from the World War II memorial.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. RANDY NEUGEBAUER (R), TEXAS: How do you look at them and say how
do you -- deny them access? I don`t get that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s difficult.
NEUGEBAUER: Well, it should be difficult.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is difficult. I`m sorry, sir.
NEUGEBAUER: The park service should be ashamed of themselves.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m not ashamed.
NEUGEBAUER: Well, you should be.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ask those questions of the people who aren`t
passing a budget. That`s who you need to ask these questions too.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This woman is doing her job just like me. I`m a
30-year veteran. I`m out of work.
NEUGEBAUER: The reason you are is because Mr. Reid --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. It`s because the government won`t do its job
and pass a budget.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: She should be ashamed because she`s doing her job? Even
though the congressman isn`t doing his? These Republican lawmakers don`t
care about their work. They just care about blaming other people for their
Kentucky senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul were even caught
whispering about that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: Do you have a second?
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MINORITY LEADER: I`m all wired up here.
PAUL: I just don`t see an end. I just go over and over again, we are
willing to compromise. We`re willing to negotiate. I think -- I don`t
think they poll tested we won`t negotiate. I think it`s awful for them to
say that over and over again.
MCCONNELL: Yes, I do too. And I just came back from a two-hour
meeting with them and that was basically the same view privately as it was
PAUL: I think if we keep saying we wanted to defund it, we fought
for, that but now we`re willing to compromise, I think they can`t -- we`re
going to -- I think -- well, I know we don`t want to be here but we`re
going to win this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Wow. Millions of people are hurting because of this
shutdown, but they think they are winning? I`m glad they have their
talking points in order. And today President Obama told them to knock it
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: So I want everybody to
understand this. There are enough Republicans and Democrats in the House
of Representatives today that if the Speaker of the House John Boehner
simply let the bill get on the floor for an up or down vote, every
congressman could vote their conscience the shutdown would end today. Take
a vote. Stop this farce. And end this shutdown right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The American people agree. Stop this farce. And here`s a
tip. Don`t blame park rangers for your dirty work.
Joining me now, a former Governor Ed Rendell, democrat of
Pennsylvania, and Goldie Taylor. Thank you both for being here.
GOLDIE TAYLOR, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Governor, blaming a park ranger for a closed memorial. I
mean, you ever seen anything like this?
ED RENDELL, FORMER DNC CHAIRMAN: No. It`s the most hypocritical
thing I`ve seen in politics, and politics is a hypocritical business, as
you Rev. But I`ve never seen anything -- I`ve never seen anything that
reaches this dimension. Perhaps, the only other thing I can think of is
when they voted against stimulus and then showed up to take credit for the
ribbon cuttings for stimulus projects. But this is disgraceful. That park
ranger was doing the best she could. And you know, these guys should be
back to work. And this idea that I heard Michele Bachmann and the others
say, that nobody`s getting hurt. What about the head start kids? What
about the wick families? You know, they`re just ignoring stuff. It`s
SHARPTON: But to be clear, Governor, the park is closed because of
their shutdown. The park ranger --
SHARPTON: -- is only doing the job that they forced them to do because
they voted to shutdown the park, shutdown the federal government, which
includes the park. How do you cause something and then go to the people
that have to guard what you caused and act like they did it? I mean, it`s
RENDELL: It`s ridiculous. It`s like the person who shoots his mother
and father and then asks the court for mercy because he`s an orphan. It`s
SHARPTON: Now, Goldie, a lot of republican Congress members,
including Steve King from Iowa, have been doing photo ops at this World War
II Memorial they closed, and today a protester called Steve King of Iowa
out on his hypocrisy. Take a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Pass the budget, Congressman.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Pass the budget, Congressman. Congressman King,
why are you making --
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Their children and --
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Why have you come down here for a political
opportunity, for a camera shot, sir?
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: The real patriots are the veterans who came down
here. Put your tail between your legs, go back up on the hill, and do your
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Goldie, what kind of shape would we be in if the
Republicans spent as much time doing their work as they were doing photo
TAYLOR: You know, those members of Congress have no business at our
war memorials or anywhere else today. Where they belong is their butts in
their seats on the House floor voting to reopen this government. That`s
where they belong. Photo ops and all of those kinds of things, and I even
saw them give, you know, a Capitol Hill police officers a standing ovation
today, which they so richly deserve. But what they deserve even more than
that is a paycheck. And so to believe that these people are out here
grandstanding, putting out press releases, raising money on this government
shutdown is some of the most diabolical things that we`ve seen in a very,
very long time come from this Capitol Hill. And that is saying a lot.
SHARPTON: Let me go back to another point with this, Governor.
Senator Rand Paul was caught on tape just after going on TV talking about
how he avoided responsibility and how Republicans will quote, "win this."
Let`s watch how he did that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: I just did CNN and I just go over and
over again, we`re willing to compromise.
We`ve been offering some compromises.
We`re also willing to compromise.
If we keep saying we wanted to defund, it we fought for, that but now
we`re willing to compromise on this.
We lost on defunding. I fought for defunding but we lost. The
President wants 100 percent, though. And should he not need to negotiate
to get somewhere in the middle in order to get a compromise?
We`re willing to negotiate.
I can`t understand why a compromise or negotiation would be bad.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Now, Governor, he`s talking about overturning a law he`s
voted on. That was a law that was a central issue in the campaign last
year that was upheld by the Supreme Court. Talking about a law. I mean,
do you think he can get away with this with the American people?
RENDELL: No. And I can`t believe he`s that dumb to think he can.
Look, the American people understand that the affordable health care act
has nothing to do with a budget resolution. That`s clear. It`s clear in
all the polls. And they can talk all they want. Nobody thinks the
president should compromise on the affordable health care act. Whether
they like it or not, they don`t think this type of blackmail extortion is
correct and proper. And that`s where these guys don`t seem to get it.
They`re never going to win because they`ve chosen the wrong way to go about
doing this. Let`s pass the bill. Let`s pass the clean cr. Let`s get the
government back working. And then you can try to amend Obamacare all you
want. But the two things aren`t tied together. And until they understand
that they`re going to keep making fools of themselves.
SHARPTON: Now, let me ask you this, Goldie. "The New York Times"
reported today that Speaker Boehner won`t let the nation default. He quote
-- this is a quote. "He has told colleagues that he is determined to
prevent a federal default and is willing to pass a measure through a
combination of republican and democratic votes." So he`d be willing to use
Democrats to pass a bill to raise the debt ceiling, but he won`t do that
for the shutdown. Goldie, what do you make of this? Is Boehner cracking
TAYLOR: Well, I think he understands just how catastrophic, you know,
not -- us breaching the debt ceiling would absolutely be. And I think he
also understands the level of resolve that Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and
this president have shown over recent days. And so, I think he understands
that and he`s going to break the Hastert rule. He bought to break that
rule right now. He ought to get some moral courage and put Republicans and
Democrats together on the floor of the House tonight and reopen this
government. He can show that courage right now. And then we can talk
about how to tweak and make the Affordable Care Act better later. The fact
of the matter is, this law has been vetted by the Supreme Court. It has
been vetted by the American people. It has been vetted by both houses of
Congress. And it is the law of the land.
SHARPTON: I see you`re nodding your head, Governor, and a little amen
I even heard.
RENDELL: Absolutely. Goldie is so right. And the irony of this all
is that the act is rolling out. Its implementation is rolling out. And
Americans are flocking by the millions to sign up. And that ought to be a
message to the Republicans as well. But look, Goldie is right. It is time
for us to act as a country. Country first, partisan politics second. And
let`s do this. It`s not that hard.
SHARPTON: Governor Ed Rendell and Goldie Taylor, thank you both for
TAYLOR: Thank you, Reverend Sharpton.
SHARPTON: Straight ahead, more reports of cancer patients unable to
get the help they need because of the GOP shutdown. That`s next.
SHARPTON: Republicans are in no hurry to end the government shutdown.
But Americans are hurting. That`s next.
OBAMA: And the longer this goes on, the worse it will be. And it
makes no sense. The American people elected their representatives to make
their lives easier, not harder.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The President calling out the GOP for the hurt they`re
causing. The people who put them in office. People like Leo Finn, a
father of three. Won`t get access to a last-chance treatment for his
cancer. Because of the government shutdown.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEO FINN, CANCER PATIENT: This could be the miracle drug. You know,
this could be the one that, you know, saved me, that I was going to be able
to walk my daughter down the aisle. I`m just mad that the government can
walk away from people and we don`t matter. It is what it seems.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: That`s the GOP agenda right now. People don`t matter.
This shutdown has even stopped therapy dogs at the NIH from comforting
children suffering from cancer. We`re seeing this kind of pain all over
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: This is going to be very, very hard on us.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Families coming in were in shock. Many have to
work or go to school during the day. So to them head start was not a
luxury, it was a necessity.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Even if we end up getting reimbursed for the time
off, it`s too late. You know, we need money now.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Something like seven-month-old Harper`s $300
emergency room visit this weekend for an ear infection could be a financial
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Without this food pantry I wouldn`t have anything
to eat. They`re not thinking about us. The people that really needs it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Outside the GOP bubble people are hurting. But for the
right-wing extremists the shutdown is cause for celebration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: We`re really very energized
today. We`re very strong. This is about the happiest I`ve seen members in
a long time.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Most Americans realize the government shutdown has
no impact on their daily life.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: It`s not going to be the end of their life even if
you`re under assistance from the federal government. I believe that no one
is going to starve in Arkansas because of this shutdown.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Each day that passes the damage from this shutdown gets
worse and worse. Republicans better open their eyes and see what`s
Joining me now is E.J. Dionne and Krystal Ball. Thank you both for
KRYSTAL BALL, MSNBC CO-HOST, "THE CYCLE": Thanks for having us, Rev.
E.J. DIONNE, THE WASHINGTON POST: Good to be with you.
SHARPTON: E.J., conservatives in Washington act as though people
aren`t getting hurt. Are they so out of touch or how do you explain it?
DIONNE: Well, I think for some conservatives there`s just this deep
ideological sense that government doesn`t do much good anyway, so we`re not
going to miss it. Well, people in the wick program, you`re women, infants,
and children, nine million mothers and babies, basically are going to start
losing benefits in about a week if this shuts down. People who use head
start programs. Those are going to slowly shutdown.
DIONNE: Which is bad for a lot of reasons including for working poor
people. But if they`re not worried about that, what about the small
business administration and various kinds of help to small businesses that
won`t go on? The government touches us sometimes in very direct ways that
we know about. But also touches the economy in a lot of other ways. Not
paying two million people is not good for the economy.
SHARPTON: You know, Krystal, there`s a woman who`s the wife of a
fallen New Mexico firefighter. She isn`t able to get her husband`s death
benefits because of the shutdown. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Heidi not only lost her husband. She also gave
birth to their daughter.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Now the federal government shutdown has frozen her
late husband`s federal benefits.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I had a meeting set for benefits tomorrow.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Heidi was supposed to finalize her late husband`s
federal benefits. But the meeting set for tomorrow has been canceled.
She`s told it could be as much as four weeks before token`s benefits
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Four weeks would be critical.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: I mean, this is the widow of someone who gave his life
BALL: It`s heartbreaking.
SHARPTON: Protecting others.
BALL: And I think because a lot of Republicans, they aren`t in touch
with these people and because a lot of the people who are suffering most as
usual are those who have the least voice in our democracy, who have the
least power, and so their voices aren`t heard particularly by the
Republican Party. But you know, I think there were a lot of folks on the
republican side of the aisle who thought this shutdown was going to show
the American people how irrelevant the federal government was, how much
waste there was, how much you could live without it. And I think it`s had
the exact opposite effect. The longer the shutdown goes on, the more
people realize how important the federal government is and what good work
it does do.
SHARPTON: You know, E.J., it`s not just individuals that are hurting.
Reuters reports that more and more manufacturers are reporting problems
with delays and furloughs.
DIONNE: Right. Well, in fact, I mean, we forget how much government
money flows into the private sector, and so people have jobs in the private
sector that are supported largely or at least in part by government
dollars. And I think it`s worth noting that this shutdown is not popular
with the vast majority of Americans. There are plenty of Americans who
aren`t pro-government liberals who just don`t like the idea of government
disappearing, who are fully aware of what the government contributes to the
economy as a whole and often to their own lives and their communities.
SHARPTON: Yes. And you know, let me tell you something along those
lines that`s of concern, Krystal. Tropical storm Karen, which is forming
near the Gulf of Mexico, may make landfall this weekend. FEMA and the
National Hurricane Center have both been affected by the shutdown. This is
just another reminder of where government is important.
BALL: That`s exactly right. And the longer that the shutdown goes
on, the more examples that we`re going to have like that. And I think as
E.J. was pointing out, people already realize and were already very much
against shutting the government down. And let`s not forget what this is
over. It`s over the Affordable Care Act. It`s over Obamacare. It`s over
providing health insurance to millions of Americans who desperately need
it. That is what they`re trying to prevent. And to do so they`re willing
to take the whole government hostage and threaten the very constitutional
balance on which our democracy rests.
SHARPTON: Isn`t that the whole point, E.J.? We`re talking about the
whole government shutting down because people are going to be insured that
wasn`t insured by a bill that was already made law and upheld by the
Supreme Court. I mean, when you think of what we`re going through all of
this danger and potential danger, for something that`s already been
debated, already been voted, and that`s helping people that had not been
helped, it`s ludicrous.
DIONNE: The government`s being shut down to take health insurance
away from about 25 million people, maybe a little more. And I think it was
very interesting that the shutdown coincided with opening day for the
exchanges. And one of the things opening day showed -- they had some
problems. But the fact is a whole lot of Americans really want to take
advantage of the Affordable Care Act. And I think it shows they really
want to shut this down before Americans take advantage of it because
they`ll never want it to go away. And they`ve acknowledged that. And
they`ve already missed the deadline, and it`s now starting to take effect.
SHARPTON: But when you see, Krystal, the tape we showed of McConnell
and Paul talking and they`re being overheard in the mic where they`re kind
of like plotting on the talking points and saying we can win this, it seems
all like brinkmanship, like it`s no consideration at all for what it`s
doing for the country, what it`s going to do for the economy, and what it`s
doing to real ordinary people that I`ve been showing tonight.
BALL: It`s incredibly cynical. And you can see how cynical and
ridiculous their strategy is by the fact that one of their last gambits
before they shutdown the government was to try to demand that healthcare
subsidies to their own staffers be taken away.
SHARPTON: Yes. Right.
BALL: And this is something that Boehner had been working behind the
scenes to get. And now he`s going to shut down the government over
something he fought to get. I mean, that`s how cynical they are here and
how just transparently vacuous their strategy has been.
DIONNE: And maybe republican staff members will join a union because
I just found that astonishing, that they were going to pull that health
insurance out from their subsidies.
SHARPTON: Krystal Ball, E.J. Dionne, thank you both for your time.
BALL: Thanks, Rev.
DIONNE: Good to be with you.
SHARPTON: And remember, you can catch Krystal on "THE CYCLE,"
weekdays at 3:00 p.m. Eastern right here on MSNBC. Still ahead, new
information about today`s deadly car chase and shooting on Capitol Hill.
Stay with us.
SHARPTON: We`re back with more on today`s breaking news. Law
enforcement sources have identified the woman shot and killed in that chase
through Washington, D.C. today. Her is Miriam Carey, a 34-year-old dental
hygienist from Stamford, Connecticut. We`re also learning she was the
subject of an extensive police and FBI investigation in Connecticut. But
still no word on her motive. We`ll be right back.
SHARPTON: Finally tonight, the government shutdown continues with no
sign of an agreement. So, I want to talk for a moment about political
courage. As of today 19 Republicans in Congress are now pushing to fund
the government without strings attached, without making it about the
President`s healthcare law. The hope is that others will join them and
that they`ll become unlikely allies with Democrats. So we`ll have members
of different parties working together to open our government. In my new
book "The Rejected Stone." I write about the need for all of us to be
aware of where we are going, not who we`re going with.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Being open to unlikely allies talks about how I learned and
watched others learn that sometimes your goal will attract people that you
don`t normally walk the same path with. And you must always be more
committed to the end goal than to those that travel along the way. If you
have a destination, you may find some fellow travelers who may be different
than you, may come from a totally different perspective than you, but for a
while could travel the same road. Always keep your eye on the prize.
Don`t worry about who`s going to walk with you on the path.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: I`m really excited about the book. If you`d like to read
an excerpt from "The Rejected Stone," please go to our Facebook page,
Facebook.com/POLITICSNATION. On the page you will also find details about
the book signing I`ll be doing in New York City next week. It will be this
Tuesday, October 8th. The day the book comes out. I will be at Barnes &
Noble`s on 5th Avenue at 12:00 noon. That`s 45th street and 5th Avenue.
I`m looking forward to seeing all of POLITICS NATION.
Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. "HARDBALL" starts right now.
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