All In With Chris Hayes, Monday, November 04, 2013
Read the transcript from the Monday show
ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
November 4, 2013
Guest: Dylan Scott, Nancy Metcalf, Michael Waldman, Josh Barro, Goldie
Taylor, Richard Kim
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris
Behind in the polls, desperate to turn things around, the Republican
candidate for governor of Virginia, Ken Cuccinelli, the Cooch, was on the
trail today ripping Obamacare, convinced, it seems, that this will be the
issue that can catapult him to an improbable victory tomorrow.
Probably not going to happen, but bashing Obamacare is good politics
if you`re a Republican right now. And it certainly helps when so much of
the media is serving up incomplete reports about the Affordable Care Act.
HAYES (voice-over): Is the flurry of coverage about Obamacare
confusing you? Well, we here at ALL IN can help.
Here`s our viewer`s guide to watching Obamacare coverage.
When you see a report about someone being dropped from their insurance
and not able to afford a replacement policy --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You`ve got millions of people being kicked off
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Katherine says she found a plan on the health
insurance marketplace that would cost them $178 a month, which she still
considers a stretch for their budget.
HAYES: The question you should be asking is, does the person in this
report qualify for subsidies on the newly created health exchange? Someone
like Deborah Cavallaro.
DEBORAH CAVALLARO: I`d be paying more for the exchange plans that I
am currently paying by a wide margin.
HAYES: The report did not mention that Deborah qualifies for a hefty
federal premium subsidy a reported later by the "L.A. Times."
If you are watching a report that doesn`t say whether or not the
subject qualifies for subsidies, the story is incomplete.
Next, when you watch a report about someone losing insurance they
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For tens of thousands are being notified their
insurance plan is being canceled.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That includes 56-year-old Diane Barrett. Last
month, she received a letter from Blue Cross Blue Shield informing her that
as of January 2014, she would lose her current plan. Barrett pays $54 a
month. The new plan she`s being offered would run $591 a month.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are people that love their plan, they want
to keep their plan, and they`re not able to get a plan.
HAYES: You should be asking yourself, just what kind of policy is
this? Does it cover the things you would want insurance to cover? Does it
cover hospitalization or doctors` visits or prescriptions? Or is the
insurance being dropped insurance in name only, also known as a junk
If the report doesn`t say, you`re not getting the whole story.
Next, and this is important, you will see story after story featuring
a letter from an insurance company bearing bad news.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Letters in the mail alerting people, they or
their doctors are being dropped by their insurance company.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN: Individual policy-holders getting letters from
their insurance companies.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Letters are hitting mailboxes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the letter Florida Blue customers are
receiving in the mail that`s basically telling them, due to the Affordable
Care Act, their health plans will be canceled.
HAYES: While watching these reports, you should be asking, is the
reporter taking the insurance company at face value?
Today, Dylan Scott at "Talking Points Memo` reports that across the
country, insurance companies have sent misleading letters to consumers,
trying to lock them into the company`s own, sometimes more expensive,
health insurance. "TPM" has confirmed two specific examples where
companies contacted their customers and pushed them to renew their health
coverage at a higher price than they would pay through the marketplace.
And finally, when you watch these individual stories, remember, there
are over a million people in Texas alone who are not getting insurance
under Obamacare because Republicans in Texas blocked the Medicaid
expansion. There are over 700,000 people in Florida, over 400,000 people
in Georgia who will not get coverage because they live in a state that
blocked the Medicaid expansion.
Have you heard their stories? Do you know their name? Just because
they didn`t get a letter doesn`t mean they aren`t getting screwed.
HAYES: Joining now is Dylan Scott who reported that great piece for
"Talking Points Memo", and Nancy Metcalf, senior editor at "Consumer
Reports," where she covers health care reform.
Dylan, I`ll start with you.
Great piece of reporting, and one of the things I found amazing is the
way in which the letter from the insurance company announcing the
cancellation of coverage is designed to essentially very quickly and slyly
roll someone over into a much more expensive plan without actually
communicating what their options are.
DYLAN SCOTT, TALKING POINTS MEMO: Exactly. I mean, there are two
problems here as far as consumer advocates and state regulators are
concerned, and that is, the letters from insurers are leaving out two
critical pieces of information. One, that people have the option to go to
the marketplace and shop for insurance, both from these insurers and from
other insurers. And two, that if they take these kind of default options
that these insurers are presenting in the letters, they`re not going to be
able to take advantage of the financial assistance that Obamacare has to
So, for example, the woman that we reported on today in Washington,
the difference between what her insurer tried to funnel her into and what
she was able to find on the marketplace was the difference between night
and day. Outside of the marketplace, her company would have put her in a
plan that costs more than $1,000 a month, had a more than $6,000
deductible. But inside the exchange, she was able to find a plan with a
$250 deductible that cost her $80 a month after the Obamacare`s financial
assistance was applied.
HAYES: Wait a second, you are saying that her current insurer sent
her a letter and they said, well, we`re canceling your current program,
your current plan, but comparable plan, 1,000 bucks a month. When she
actually goes to the exchange, shops around, she finds something that when
all in after the subsidies, she`s paying $80 as opposed to$1,000 a month?
SCOTT: Exactly. And I think what is riling up consumer advocates and
state regulators is that the plan that she got from her insurer said if you
like this plan, which is the most comparable plan, we can offer you under
Obamacare compared to what you had before, just do nothing. Don`t worry
about it. You`ll be covered.
HAYES: Yes, that`s like the old record of the month club move, right?
It`s like, don`t do anything. We`ll just bill you. Do not worry about it.
Nancy, is this an isolated incident or are you seeing this from your
perch at "Consumer Reports" as a kind of widespread practice right now?
NANCY METCALF, CONSUMER REPORTS: I`ve seen -- I was looking at a
bunch of letters today, and they`re all pretty much as Dylan describes.
Hey, we have to cancel your plan. Obamacare made us do it. We`re going to
give you a better plan. It`s going to be really expensive, but you don`t
have to do anything. And somewhere way down in the letter, it will say,
oh, by the way, you can go on your marketplace.
I saw a letter today from Missouri. It didn`t even bother to tell
anybody where to find the market place. And I think it just -- it just --
the way that people are reacting to this really brings home the point that
a lot of people who will benefit from this law still don`t know it, and we
need to do a much better job of educating them.
HAYES: Do you think -- is there any way to cash this out a little
bit? I mean, I guess the question, is how will these practices change,
Nancy? Is it just a question of these insurers being called out on this?
Are they cynically using the excuse of Obamacare in the letter to deflect
blame so that they can kind of get away with what used to be called panic
METCALF: Well, I think two things are going on. One, they really do
have to get rid of these plans because they`re no longer going to be
allowed to be sold or renewed after the beginning of the year.
But I think the other thing is, they want to keep these people as
METCALF: One of the big deals for insurance companies is market
share. And now that a lot more people are going to be able to get
insurance, they`re nervous because they want to keep as many healthy people
in these plans as they can.
And remember, most of the people who are being canceled are healthy or
they wouldn`t have the insurance at all. They`re really trying to keep
hold of them as customers.
HAYES: Dylan, you talked to some state insurance regulators who are
starting to raise some red flags about this. What did you hear from them?
SCOTT: Well, it sort of depends on the state, for starters. In the
case of Kentucky, the commissioner was able to levy a $65,000 fine. The
company had to send out, you know, a new letter, and anybody who had
committed to the misleading letter was free to shop for insurance under
But, like, out in Washington, technically, the insurer was following
the letter of the law, so the best that the insurance commissioner could do
was put out a consumer alert and try to inform people that they have other
options. But in some cases, their hands are tied. In some places, they
are able to take some disciplinary action. So it depends.
HAYES: What`s striking to me about the reporting in your piece is the
woman who`s the subject of that, who receives the letter in Washington, a
woman by a name of Donna, strikes me as quite self-possessed and quite
educated, and she essentially has to do all this due diligence to go out
and realize she`s having the wool pulled over her eyes.
But you can imagine thousands and hundreds of thousands of people who
are in similar circumstances not being necessarily equipped to do that.
Dylan Scott from "Talking Points Memo," Nancy Metcalf from "Consumer
Reports" -- thank you so much.
Joining me now David Axelrod, former senior adviser of President
Barack Obama, now an NBC News analyst and director of the University of
Chicago Institute of Politics.
David, what is your feeling about this, the coverage that the health
care law has gotten in the last few weeks?
DAVID ALEXANDER, NBC NEWS ANALYST: Well, look, some of it is self-
inflicted because the Web site hasn`t functioned properly. And you know,
part of the problem here is that people haven`t been able to go on to the
Web site and learn that they could get a better deal.
On the other hand, many of these people aren`t even being informed in
these letters that they have that opportunity or that it`s buried in the
fine print, and that, you know, that`s unacceptable. That`s deceptive.
And I do think that, you know, there is -- you know, Chris, you`re an
experienced journalist -- there tends to be kind of a herd mentality in
AXELROD: And now the story is -- well, the Web site`s not working.
Now, the letters are out there.
And I have no doubt that the opponents are fanning this. I don`t
think this is all original reporting going on, but I don`t think people are
digging deep enough. I think the piece you did at the front end was a
service in terms of demystifying some of this.
But it is problematical. And, you know, my strong feeling is that
they need to get this Web site up and running and they need to remarket the
whole program so that people will go on. And what they`ll find is a very
competitive marketplace, good subsidies.
And let`s remember, these insurers we`re talking about here and the
market we`re talking about here, this small market, individual market, and
the people who are being impacted by this are people who have poor
AXELROD: And you know, I said -- I`ve been saying throughout this
period that I have a very personal perspective on this, because when I was
a young person, I got insurance that I thought was adequate.
I had a child when I was 26 years old. When she was 7 months old, she
started having seizures, epilepsy, and my coverage had no prescription
coverage, and her medications to keep her alive -- she had uncontrolled
seizures -- $1,000 a month. We couldn`t shift her to another insurance
policy because she had a pre-existing condition.
AXELROD: And I thought I had great insurance, and it was great as
long as we were all healthy.
HAYES: So, I`m glad you raise that, because it seems to me when we`re
talking about, there`s the first wave of coverage, which is about the Web
site, and I think basically, the Web site was not working, and that was the
The second wave of coverage is deeper and it`s more about this, the
cancellation letters. And to me it strikes me, there`s two issues here.
There`s the issue on the merits, which is, there are changes happening
to this market that was a very broken market for some of the reasons you`re
saying, testifying to personally, right? Very broken market. I also
participated in this very broken market at times in my life.
Those changes on the policy merits are different than the other
critique you`re hearing from conservatives, and like you hear from Mitt
Romney this weekend, that it`s fundamentally that the president misled or
lied to the American people. I want you to take a listen to what Mitt
Romney had to say this weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MITT ROMNEY (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Perhaps the most
important lesson the president I think failed to learn was, you have to
tell the American people the truth, and when he told the American people
that you could keep your health insurance if you wanted to keep that plan,
period. He said that time and again.
DAVID GREGORY, MEET THE PRESS: Right.
ROMNEY: He wasn`t telling the truth.
GREGORY: But, Governor, on that point --
ROMNEY: I think that fundamental dishonesty has really put in peril
the whole foundation of his second term.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Fundamental dishonesty. What`s your response to that, David?
AXELROD: Well, first of all, I regret that Governor Romney felt a
need to engage in that way. The campaign`s a year old. Get over it.
The fact of the matter is, the president went out and he said I think
he said what he believed to be the fact and what was substantially was the
fact, because 95 percent, 96 percent, whatever it was, 97 percent of
Americans are in the position where they can keep the insurance they have
and they`re going to see no changes.
There is this small group of people who weren`t grandfathered in
because they got insurance after the law was signed in the individual
market who bought substandard policies that don`t protect them -- and, by
the way, don`t protect us, because when their coverage isn`t adequate, we
end up footing the bill as taxpayers.
And so, you know, there is this small group there that has to be dealt
with. Many of them will get better insurance for less money.
HAYES: Right. But the issue that strikes me is the phrasing here,
and the president used this phrase a lot, and it was a powerful phrase
politically, which was you. It was addressing the listener. You can keep
your plan. You can keep your doctor.
And there`s always going to be someone on the other side of that you,
sitting on the other side of the television screen for whom that is not
NBC News analyst David Axelrod, thank you so much.
AXELROD: Good to be with you.
HAYES: Coming up --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV), MAJORITY LEADER: A more important reason to
support this legislation and popular support, it`s the right thing to do.
All Americans, regardless of what they look like where they live or who
they choose to love, deserve to be treated with the same respect and
dignity while they earn a living.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: A recent study found that nearly eight out of 10 voters think
that LBGT people were already protected from workplace discrimination by
federal law. That is not true and the Republican House wants to keep it
I`ll explain, ahead.
HAYES: Fortunately for Senator Rand Paul, when you type his name into
Google, plus the letters "P" and "L," this is what comes up for now. But I
bet it won`t be that way for long.
More on the senator`s plagiarism problem, ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The ayes are 61, the nays are 30. Three-fifths of
the Senate duly chosen and sworn, having voted in the affirmative, the
motion is agreed to.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Today was a historic day in the United States Senate, where 61
senators, more than enough to break a filibuster, voted to advance the
Employment Non-Discrimination Act or ENDA -- legislation that would make it
illegal for employers with at least 15 workers to discriminate based on
sexual orientation and gender identity.
Right now, in 29 states in this country, your boss can in many cases
fire you simply because he does not like the fact that you are gay. That`s
in 2013, and that is insane. Democrats and a handful of Republicans have
been pushing to change this, and the Senate is now poised to pass ENDA for
the first time ever and throw its support behind the notion that it should
be illegal to discriminate in the workplace based on sexuality just as it
is illegal to discriminate based on race, religion, gender, age and
But on the same day the Senate moved toward greater equality for LGBT
Americans, a spokesman announced that House Speaker John Boehner would not
support the law and signaled Boehner will not bring it up on the House
floor for a vote.
Now, Republicans are smart enough to realize they can`t just come out
and say they favor discrimination against gay people in the workplace, but
it wasn`t that long ago they would say just that. The new tactic is to
argue that ENDA will, quote, "Increase frivolous litigation and cost
We asked Boehner`s spokesman if that means the speaker wants to roll
back civil rights protections for other groups that can now sue over
discrimination. He said no. Apparently, frivolous lawsuits are only a
concern when it comes to gay people.
In March, the Republican National Committee under chairman Reince
Priebus said that if they want to win the elections, Republicans "must
change our tone, especially on certain social issues that are turning off
It would be hard to find a Republican strategist who would disagree,
who would say the GOP should be the party of intolerance against gay
people. Yet, Republicans, particularly House Republicans, can`t stop
taking stances that alienate large swaths of the population, they did it on
the shutdown, they did it on immigration, and now, they`re doing it again.
They can`t seem to help themselves.
Joining me now is Michael Steele, MSNBC contributor, former chairman
of the RNC.
And I think there`s an interesting dynamic here, which is if you got
in a room with six or ten strategists who are trying to plot a political
path forward for the GOP post-2012 --
MICHAEL STEELE, FORMER RNC CHAIRMAN: Right.
HAYES: -- I think there`s three things that you wouldn`t want to --
it`s not the hill you`d want to die on.
HAYES: If you`re the Republican Party. The shutdown, which was
STEELE: Absolutely. Right.
HAYES: I think you don`t want to be seen as the party that kills
comprehensive immigration reform.
HAYES: And I think you don`t want to be the party that`s seen as
sticking up, as we see today, sticking up for essentially the right to
discriminate against gay people in the workplace. And yet, we see the
Senate passing all three of those things, right? Clean CR, comprehensive
immigration reform, and today it comes out of the Senate, breaking the
The House, though, we just got nothing.
STEELE: I will give you two of those hills, not the third. I think
in terms of the first two, absolutely, because --
HAYES: You`re saying the shutdown and immigration.
STEELE: The shutdown and immigration. I think that the political
ramifications of that are long term, particularly when you see for
Hispanics, for example, you know, 50,000 Hispanics turn 15 every month.
That`s a big number after a while.
I think on this other hill, this third hill on ENDA and its progeny,
and it will be, I think, other federal legislations, as well as state
legislation in this regard, they -- the party tends to look at that as
something that it`s more socially-oriented, it`s going to be more
community-based, and therefore, there`s no need for this broad swath of
federal regulation or legislation.
HAYES: But doesn`t it --
STEELE: -- which is inconsistent when you look at our history in
terms of civil rights legislation that we promoted from the 13th, 14th
Amendment, et cetera.
HAYES: So, I`m a little confused. Do you yourself, Michael Steele,
do you favor ENDA?
STEELE: I would vote for it, yes.
HAYES: You would vote for it.
STEELE: I would support it, yes.
HAYES: But you think they`re not going to see political backlash for
HAYES: See, I disagree with that for the following reason. I agree
it won`t be the same as the backlash they faced for immigration reform, but
I do think there is a deep branding problem around tolerance, around
openness, around the accessibility and cultural affinity, particularly
culturally affinity generationally. That was the Reince Priebus line --
HAYES: -- coming out of the big postmortem in 2012, and I think --
STEELE: So, you think there will be a youth push in a sense.
HAYES: There is a case to be made, if you go to your median voter at
age 30 or 35 and say, you know, the government right now, you can be fired
for being gay, and do you think that`s a good idea? Overwhelmingly,
they`re going to say no.
STEELE: First off, you`ve got to get that message to that medium
STEELE: And so, who`s going to deliver that message? How does it get
delivered through the system? And keep in mind --
HAYES: I`ll tell you --
STEELE: Well, keep in mind, Chris, that you`re talking about members
of the house who are dealing with a much smaller subset of the voting
population in which nine out of 10 heads would nod in agreement with them
in not pursuing an ENDA agenda.
HAYES: A perfect night, well done. Well done. And in fact, what do
we have, ENDA`s game?
I actually was going to say we`ve avoided any ENDA puns, but check the
bugs first and actually, we haven`t.
So, the thing I would say is, you know, that first question of who`s
going to message this. I mean, this was the thing that the Obama campaign
did well, masterfully in 2008 and again in 2012, was essentially stitching
together this coalition, right, this sort of ascending coalition. And
these steps to me, and I agree, this is not a make-or-break issue for the
GOP in the long run, the way that, say, comprehensive immigration reform,
But what it speaks to the deep inability of this House Republican
caucus, which is the governing institution of the Republican Party right
now, because they own part of the government --
HAYES: Their inability to make strategic decisions en masse --
HAYES: -- hat can respond to precisely the branding problems the
STEELE: And that`s where I think the rub will ultimately wind up.
Maybe not right now, but when you get into 2014, I think individual members
are going to revisit this issue in their own way. I think that, certainly,
by the time we get to the presidential, this issue will have a broader
platform and more voices attendant to it.
So, I think this is going to be more incremental than just coming out
of the box.
HAYES: That, you know, that to me is the question, right? The 2016
Republican presidential nominee, do they come out in favor of ENDA?
HAYES: That`s a really interesting question.
STEELE: That`s a really good question.
HAYES: MSNBC contributor Michael Steele, thanks so much.
STEELE: Thank you. Good to see you, man. All right.
HAYES: All right, coming up --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. BOB MCDONNELL (R), VIRGINIA: Eight months ago, I applied for the
job of governor of Virginia. Tonight, you have hired me. Thank you.
And I am so glad to be going to work with someone that every governor
needs. That`s a good lawyer. Thank you for Attorney General Ken
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: What a difference four years makes. We`ll preview this year`s
governors` race in Virginia where it`s not looking so good for right-wing
darling Ken Cuccinelli.
Stay with us.
HAYES: Here is what Wikipedia says about plagiarism. "Plagiarism is
the wrongful appropriation and purloining and publication of another
author`s language, thoughts, ideas or expressions and representation of
them as one`s own original work."
You will notice I cited Wikipedia as I read from it, and you know why?
Because I`m not a plagiarist. I communicate to people for a living
association, so it`s pretty damn essential that people know when the words
I`m saying are mine and when I`m quoting someone else.
Now, if there`s one thing I`ve noticed in the series of plagiarism
scandals that tend to pop up from time to time in American pop culture, is
it`s hard to find examples of people who just plagiarize once, because you
are either a kind of person who cares about citing things correctly and
giving credit where credit is due, or you`re not.
Remember, for example, former "New York Times" journalist Jayson
Blair, was accused of plagiarism, deception and just straight up making
things up, snowballed into one of the biggest scandals in the paper`s 162-
year history. It didn`t take long for people to pull the thread on Jason
Blair`s work, as one former "Times" reporter was quoted, "There has never
been a systemic effort to lie and cheat as a reporter comparable to what
Jayson Blair seems to have done."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAYSON BLAIR, FORMER "NEW YORK TIMES" REPORTER: I think once you
realize you can get away with something, once you cross over that line, you
somehow have to rationalize how I`m a good person and I did this. So,
somehow, this has got to be OK. I`ve got to make this OK. So, then it
becomes a lot easier to do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky now has a Jayson
Blair problem, as my colleague, Rachel Maddow, first pointed out last week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: From Wikipedia, Ethan Hawke`s character, quote, "assumes the
identity of Jerome Morrow, a former swimming star with a genetic profile
second to one, who had been injured in a car accident, leaving him
Hit it, Senator.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL, (R) KENTUCKY JUNIOR SENATOR: He assumes the identity
of a Jerome Morrow, a world-class swimming star whose genetic profile who
is said to be secondary to none. He has been paralyzed in a car accident.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST OF "ALL IN" SHOW: And, then BuzzFeed pointed
out that Senator Paul lifted another parts of Wikipedia entry verbatim.
This time on the movie "Stand and Deliver."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JORGE RAMOS, HOST OF FUSION T.V./MEXICAN JOURNALIST: The website
BuzzFeed, they said that you borrowed several lines from Wikipedia again
for a speech in June --
RAND: I think once again -- I think once again --
RAMOS: -- in this case, the movie "Stand and Deliver."
RAND: And, once again, it`s a disagreement on how you footnote
things. And, I think people footnote things different in an academic paper
than they do in a public speech.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Oh, you didn`t see me footnoting with my hand as I made my
speech? Perhaps even more damning is this latest revelation that Paul`s
book "Government Bullies," copied more than 1,300 words from a 2003
heritage foundation study. And, now comes words that Paul`s camp is
removing speeches from its website. If the internet makes it easier to
plagiarize, it also makes it easier to get caught.
Joining me now, Michael Waldman is a former director of speechwriting
and assisted President Bill Clinton. He is the author of "My Fellow
Americans." The most important speeches of America`s Presidents from
George Washington to Barack Obama. All right, Michael, let`s just say,
authorship in a speech is a complicated thing.
MICHAEL WALDMAN, AUTHOR OF "MY FELLOW AMERICANS": That is right. A
speech is really are a little bit different from an academic paper or
anything else written down. It is an oral tradition, and the Martin Luther
King`s great peroration --
WALDMAN: -- at the Lincoln Memorial borrowed lines from different
WALDMAN: But having said that, going to Wikipedia and lifting things
in full paragraph form probably takes it to a different level.
HAYES: Well, in your day, you didn`t have Wikipedia. So, you had to
go to Britannica, right? And, just sort of copy word for word -- I mean,
did you do this as a speech writer?
WALDMAN: Well, no. I mean, well, first of all, with Bill Clinton, he
didn`t really read the speeches.
WALDMAN: So, even if somebody had plagiarized, and there were always
-- when you have a deluge of facts coming in and information, you know,
there can be slip-ups. We now know how Rand Paul`s speechwriter wrote his
term papers in college, right? Control --
HAYES: Yes, right. Well, multiple speech writers. And, I think
that`s part of what`s weird here.
WALDMAN: When I was working for President Clinton, it was a different
era before there was such a ubiquitous internet, but also it was harder to
get caught. We at one point had a line from "The Communist Manifesto"
accidentally went into the 1996 State of the Union Address --
HAYES: There is a specter haunting America!
WALDMAN: All in solid melts into air, which is the same speech where
he claimed the end of the era of big government.
HAYES: The era of big government is over, semi-colon; all that is
solid melts into the air.
WALDMAN: I would have been the first speech writer deported in
American history; but you know, that kind of thing happens, but you really
do want to be careful, because the words that a political leader says are
not just vapor. They are policy. They are politics. They are supposed to
be taken seriously. And, the thing that is troubling here is the kind of
slap dash nature of all of this, especially with the book.
HAYES: There are two things that I find. It is, "A. The slap dash
nature," particularly the book. I mean that is just inexcusable. It is
just sloppiness. So, I don`t even know what it is. I don`t even know what
the motivation is, but also the reaction. I mean, the reaction -- this is,
you know, this is him reacting to Jorge Ramos in that interview, gives you
a sort of taste of the high dungeon that we are seeing from Rand Paul.
Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAMOS: Do you write your own speeches, senator? Or is someone else
helping you with that?
PAUL: A lot of people participate in writing the speeches; so, they
are not really attributable to one person. But the thing is, is that if
you look at any of my speeches, there`s never been any indication that I am
trying to take credit for someone else`s work. So, really, this is really
about information and attacks coming from haters.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Attacks from haters. There is him challenging. It seemed,
amounted to a duel this weekend, which my bet would Rachel had something to
say about that later this evening, but the reaction is unhinged.
WALDMAN: Well, the level of insecurity that comes through in the way
he is reacting to this should really give pause. There is almost, you
know, sometimes people talk about the impostor syndrome, and it is like,
"He is got a little bit of a cold sweat breaking out here."
You know, I really think that if politicians just get handed a speech
and they read it, even somebody with as distinctive ideological makeup as
Rand Paul, there is something wrong with that. I mean, I really want the
people to at least play a major role in writing their own speeches. They
can`t do it all, but this comes from --
HAYES: It makes you think what kind of operation is being run here.
And, finally, this -- the Joe Biden famously, you know, was essentially
knocked out of a presidential primary in 1988 for delivering a speech that
was actually delivered by a British politician.
It was about sort of a Boyhood Story, uncredited. The Dukakis
campaign circulated a video of him doing it uncredited. Should Rand Paul
go in a time machine back to 1988 and like apologize to Joe Biden? You
know, is that -- what are the rules here? What is a misdemeanor? What is
WALDMAN: Look, I do think that some of the rules are in flux because
there is greater ability to look at videotapes. There is greater ability
to cut and paste. Biden got in trouble in particular because it was a
first person story about his coal miner ancestors and Neil Kinnock`s coal
miner ancestors, too. I think if I were Rand Paul, I would just say, "Yes,
this has been sloppy and I would make darn sure not to have it happen
again." His reaction of threatening a duel and the haters --
HAYES: As if his honor has been questioned when he has been caught
red-handed. That strikes me as bizarre.
WALDMAN: Well, plus, he is seen even by democrats as something of a
WALDMAN: With a not so orthodox, heterodox mix of libertarian, drug
legalization and foreign policy. But, I think part of the freshness is the
idea that he is not just the product of a committee.
WALDMAN: But, actually --
HAYES: Or just, you know, stealing Think Tank papers and putting them
in his book. Former speech writer Michael Waldman. Thank you.
WALDMAN: My pleasure.
HAYES: We will be right back with "Click 3."
HAYES: Coming up, there is a lot to look forward to tomorrow night.
Results from three big races that are going to say a lot about the wretched
state of the Republican Party. We will preview them ahead.
But, first, I want to share the three awesomest things on the internet
today. We begin with 26.2 miles of triumph. Congratulations to everyone
who ran in the New York City Marathon, which returned after being canceled
last year due to hurricane Sandy.
And, what I learned is getting it done on the marathon path. All the
spectators were showing their creativity and encouragement with signs.
There were signs cheering on random strangers. There was "No time for
walk-in," a classic. This one promising an extra boost of power to get you
across the finish line, and course, no New York event is complete without a
healthy dose of sarcasm.
But, it was not only spectators having fun. As "New York" magazine
pointed out, plenty of runners were still in the Halloween spirit. I saw
that guy, actually. He is wearing in a full banana costume. Here is
another guy running his Elmo. There is Captain America crossing the finish
And, then there is a guy wearing the costume of "All In" producer Cary
Fox. Wait a minute, that actually is "All In" producer Cary Fox, who
finished the marathon in 4:01 and out-paced banana guy, Captain America and
Elmo. That steady, steady performance from Mr. Fox is almost certainly the
result of seeing this inspirational sign along the sidelines. Congrats,
The second awesomest thing on the internet today, a power surge north
of the border. This mysterious video was taken from inside a house in
Quebec, Canada. What is lurking around the bend? The clover field
monster? The northern lights? Nope. This.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKER: (EXPLICIT WORDS) Oh, my God. Oh, my God. That
is not cool.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We beg to differ. That was way cool! The website IO9 says
the fireball was a result of a high-impotence electrical arcing fault.
Sure. All we know is that it was so cool to look at. We can disregard the
fact that camera is being held vertically. Stop doing that, people,
And, the third awesomest thing on the internet today, everyone is a
critic. Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com is a subject of the
book, "The Everything`s Story: Jeff Bezos and the age of Amazon." And, you
try to buy the book on Amazon, you will find a one-star user review by
someone name McKenzie Bezos, who slam the book saying, "It passes off
speculation about Jeff Bezos` thoughts and intentions as that.
The "Wall Street Journal" confirmed this harsh critic was, indeed,
Jeff Bezos`s wife, McKenzie, which means her reviewed joins ours list of
our favorite Amazon Reviews ever, including this one for a so-called UFO
detector. "One star is too much for this product. I don`t know if this is
a scam or mine was broken. It does not work. I am still getting abducted
by UFOs on a regular basis."
And, then there is the all time classic for the book, "How To Avoid
Huge Ships" by John Trimmer. Read like who done it? I bought "How To
Avoid Huge Ships" as a companion to Captain Trimmer`s other excellent
titles, "How To Avoid A Train" and "How To Avoid The Empire State
Building." After reading them, I have not been hit by anything bigger than
a diesel bus. Thanks, captain. You can find all the links for tonight`s
"Click 3" on our website, allinwithchis.com. We will be right back.
HAYES: There are republican candidates on the ballot in three big
races tomorrow in three quite different electorates, but their fates say a
lot about the political moment. In Virginia, the Attorney General, Ken
Cuccinelli, the pro transvaginal ultrasound Tea Party candidate, is limping
his ways towards an embarrassing defeat. In a state that is reliably
republican at the state house level, where the current Governor Bob
McDonnell, won pretty handily four years ago.
In New York City, which has not elected a democrat for mayor in 20
years, if you could believe it, the republican candidate Joe Lhota is about
to get trounced most likely with loyalists now resorting to 1950 charges of
communism against democratic front-runner Bill De Blasio. That is not
photoshoped. That is actually in the "New York Post" today.
And, in New Jersey, Governor Chris Christie, perhaps you have heard of
him, is a study in contrast, particularly compared to Ken Cuccinelli.
Christie appears to be waltzing into an easy re-election, having
successfully mastered the atmospherics, if not the substance, of going
after the Tea Party strain of his own party. Here is Christie`s sermon to
his own faithful yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS CHRISTIE, (R) NEW JERSEY GOVERNOR: Folks don`t care if you
agree with them on everything, because let me tell you, if you are looking
for the candidate that you agree with 100% of the time, then I want you to
do something for me tonight. Go home and look in the mirror. You are the
only person you agree with 100% of the time.
But, sometimes we make political candidates feel like that`s what you
want, like you want us to agree with you 100% of the time or you won`t vote
for us. That is why we have the political system we have in Washington
now, because we have people who have become convinced that they have to be
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, MSNBC Contributor Goldie Taylor. She is also
contributor to TheGrio.com. Josh Barro, politics editor at "Business
Insider" and my colleague, Richard Kim. He is executive editor at
Josh, you wrote about that speech and I thought it was a fascinating
study in contrast. David Wilde did a great piece about the last days of
the Ken Cuccinelli campaign and just a little color in his reporting was
that like the person before Cuccinelli like updated the crowd on the latest
Benghazi stuff. And, it was just like that is like the perfect difference.
And, here`s that Christie sermon to his own faithful. I thought was an
JOSH BARRO, POLITICAL EDITOR AT BUSINESS INSIDER: Yes. And, that
speech was in Toms River, New Jersey, which is, if you can call anything a
republican stronghold in New Jersey, that`s it. Christie won that county
2-1 in 2009. And, he is going there and telling these people, "Look, we
have to compromise with democrats."
When I spoke to people in the crowd at that rally, they agreed with
that. They repeatedly said that have among the things they really liked
about Christie were his record of bipartisan achievement. And, I think it
is the national level, people tend to look at this, especially people from
the left, and say Oh, this is just spin and really he is another republican
like everybody else.
HAYES: Yes, correct. Go on.
BARRO: But, in New Jersey, you had these politics for the four years
with a lot of achievements between Christie and the democratic control
legislature. They did a reform of public employee pensions and benefits.
These were a bipartisan reform. They have done four budgets in a fairly
non acrimonious way, including this last time. The democratic candidate
was up set that democrats in the legislature --
HAYES: Everything you are saying is a perfect indicator of why the
current Tea Party domination of Washington creates a counter narrative
about bipartisanship being so beautiful and wonderful that`s completely
bankrupt as well, which I would like to talk about right after we take this
SEN. MARCO RUBIO, (R) FLORIDA SENATOR: This is the first election in
America since the full impact of Obamacare has been felt. This is the
first chance that people in this country have to speak clearly at the
ballot box about the impact that this law having on their lives and on our
economy. And, this race is a very clear choice between a strong supporter
of it and the first attorney general in America who stood up against it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That is Marco Rubio in Virginia making the case the Virginia
election`s a referendum on Obamacare, which I don`t think the republicans
necessarily want to do. We are back here with Goldie Taylor, Josh Barro
and Richard Kim. Josh, you made the point about sort of democrats and
Christie working together, and that has done wonders for, I think,
Christie`s image; but democrats I think might end up regretting just how
close they work with him.
RICHARD KIM, EXECUTIVE EDITOR, THENATION.COM: I think they absolutely
will regret it. And, look, I don`t think there is actually that much
difference between Chris Christie and Tea Party people like Rand Paul or
Ted Cruz. On the ideological level, he has moved to the right on abortion,
on gun control, on austerity. He has pretty much a maximalist if you look
at what he has done to teachers` unions.
The difference between him and those senators is situational, right?
He has actually had to govern something as an executive, and so I would put
him in the category of people like John Kasich of Ohio, Jan Brewer, who
have for example expanded Medicaid, right?
KIM: But, on the sort of fundamental question of the size and power
of government, I think he is right there with them.
HAYES: Well, I also had to point out this one thing. He got into
this fight with a teacher, you know? He yelled her. I`ll say that again.
Goldie, go ahead.
GOLDIE TAYLOR, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: There are a couple things about
this. Number one, it is, typically 12 months, 18 months out before a
presidential election or any election you have to road test your messages.
It is curious that we are far enough out and he`s got far enough of a lead
over his opponent to be road testing messages right now.
HAYES: Right, but he is road testing the compromise moderate message
TAYLOR: But, I got to tell you. If he runs this message to Oklahoma,
to Alabama, to Mississippi, to Georgia, that jalopy will not get out of the
dealership before it breaks down, because then they are looking, go you
know, "What are you saying to us?"
And, so, that is the kind of a rhino language that they are looking
for. So, yes, he has had to govern places, but the grassroots activists
across the country who drive the GOP today. They even driving the GOP
They are driving the Tea Party and the evangelical wings of the party
today. Those are the people who are going to decide that GOP primary.
And, so, not only does he have the need to come out to the right on some of
these issues; but, even, further to the right on some others. So, we don`t
know the Chris Christie that we are going to know in 2016 just yet.
BARRO: Here is why I think he is actually a very strong candidate in
2016. What he intends to do out of this election is he is going to win
big, maybe by 20, maybe by 25 points. Cuccinelli is going to have a solid
loss in Virginia. The narrative is going to be --
BARRO: -- I am the one who knows how to win. And, he has been saying
this in his speeches, because he has been saying republicans in the other
49 states are going to be looking to New Jersey to see how to win. And, he
is going to go to these republicans and say you need to change in order to
Now, the republican pace is very good at resisting that message. But,
the question is how long can they go on getting beaten up and losing and
continue to resist it? The other thing I notice that the establishment
candidate always wins the republican primaries for president and people
always said, they this about Mitt Romney about John McCain, that he is too
moderate to win. You can see him as a rhino.
BARRO: They end up -- they get beaten up in the primaries. But, I
think what Chris Chistie`s banking on is that he has a strong enough
personal appeal and people intuitively trust him. And, I have finding this
going all over New Jersey this weekend and today. The first thing people
say to you with this Chris Christie rallies, they talk about his stance on
HAYES: Right. Yes.
BARRO: They say, "He says something and then he does not." And, that
will allow him in his primaries not to pander as much because people at
least have this intuitive idea to trust him.
HAYES: That is a big asset.
KIM: You know, I think on the optics, you are right that he has tried
to do this sort of moderate and reach across both sides of the aisle. You
know, I think when it comes down to the issues, there is going to be
problems he is going to face from his base and from moderates. From his
base, they are going to look at his abortion record. They are going to
look at his gun control record. They are going to look at -- you know.
And, then from the moderates, those things are also going to present
HAYES: Well, the other thing -- I think you are right, though, about
the dynamic. The Cuccinelli, what looks like is going to happen tomorrow
Cuccinelli really helps him because it is such an object lesson? How to
lose an election?
BARRO: It`s not important for Chris Christie. The people that Chris
Christie has his eyes on are Rand Paul and Ted Cruz.
BARRO: Those are the people he has to contrast winners --
HAYES: But, they are the people -- Right. But, Rand Paul is coming
through -- you know, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio are the ones coming through
Virginia, right? And, he will be able to yoke the rest of them to
Cuccinelli. And, this Cuccinelli, this is an electoral disaster in the
HAYES: In what should be a winnable state.
TAYLOR: But, nobody in the republican base, and gosh, I know them
well, nobody in the republican base is going to say, you know, that
Cuccinelli lost because of our principles. They don`t say that. They
don`t learn that lesson.
HAYES: That is so true. You are already seeing -- and he is, he`s
been massively outspent by Terry McAuliffe. I have already seeing every
conservative writer that I read is like saying that`s what`s going it
TAYLOR: They are not going to say it`s because of the platform. They
are going to say it was Cuccinelli. They are going to blame that campaign.
They are going to blame the Slickster that is. You know Terry McAuliffe.
They are not going to blame republican principles. They are not going
to blame their stance on abortion or their harsh things about women`s
reproductive rights. They are not going to blame their plank about smaller
government. They are not going to blame shutting down the government.
They are going to blame Cuccinelli.
HAYES: Cuccinelli has managed to turn abortion, access to birth
control and reproductive choice and women`s health services into a wedge
issue favoring democrats in the state of Virginia.
HAYES: It is a pretty remarkable accomplishment.
KIM: Yes, that is an achievement.
HAYES: It`s like through the culture war looking glass.
BARRO: But, I think so much of this is tone, right? Like Cuccinelli
is not actually that much more conservative than Bob McDonnell --
TAYLOR: That is right.
BARRO: -- who solidly won the gubernatorial race four years ago; but
Bob McDonnell comes off as a business conservative suburban guy, whereas
Ken Cuccinelli feels like the bible --
HAYES: Like a culture warrior.
BARRO: And, so when you say -- I mean Chris Christie is pro-life.
KIM: He has a tone problem, too, though.
BARRO: I don`t think he does.
KIM: -- he can be conciliatory, but also jabs his finger in people`s
faces and calls them names.
BARRO: People like that -- people in new jersey like that. I mean
New Jersey`s a state that spends more than $19,000 per pupil on education,
70% more than the national average, so teachers union is popular --
HAYES: OK. Yes -- but also does quite well in terms of educational
thing. The thing that was missing today -- it is quite well. And, here is
the thing that was missing today. He wanted to cut a lot more from that
budget and a judge stopped him because he found it a violation of the civil
rights of poor kids in New Jersey.
So, he says you`re getting as much money a you want. The only reason
that woman is getting, quote, "that money" is because a federal judge
stopped him. MSNBC Contributor Goldie Taylor, Josh Barro from "Business
Insider" and Richard Kim. We will be covering the election tomorrow night
right here live. You will want to tune in for that. And that is "All In"
this evening. "The Rachel Maddow Show" starts right now. Good evening,
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Thanks, my friend.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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