PoliticsNation, Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Read the transcript from the Wednesday show
April 2, 2014
Guests: Donna Edwards, Clint Van Zandt, Jim Cavanaugh, Chuck Todd
REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: Ed, good evening. And thanks to you
for tuning in.
Tonight`s lead, the president slams congressman Ryan`s ruthless budget.
In a blistering speech today, President Obama blasted the GOP`s new budget
and its skewed vision of this country, one where the rich benefit at the
expense of everyone else.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Here is the truth. They are
not necessarily cold hearted. They just sincerely believe if we give more
tax breaks to a fortunate few and invest less in middle class and reduce or
eliminate the safety net for poor or sick and cut food stamps and we cut
Medicaid and we let bank and polluters and credit card companies and
insurers do only what is best to their bottom line without the
responsibility of the rest of us then somehow the economy will boom and
jobs and prosperity will trickle down to everybody.
And when I say it that way I know it sounds like I`m exaggerating, except
I`m not. This is their theory. They are pretty kind of bashing about.
Look. It does create opportunity for a hand few of people who are already
doing really, really well. But we believe in opportunity for everybody.
More good jobs for everybody. More workers to fill the jobs. A world
class education for everybody. Hard work that pays off with wages you can
live on and health care you can count on. That`s what opportunity for all
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Opportunity for all. That`s what the president was pushing out
today. Meeting with minimum wage workers, hearing their stories, fighting
to give them a raise, trying to give them a chance to climb this country`s
ladder of success.
Meanwhile, Congressman Ryan is trying to pull that lighter out from
underneath every day Americans. Today on Capitol Hill he defended his
budget cuts to health care, to Medicare, to food stamps, to Pell Grants for
low income college students. Why? Because we need to get serious.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. PAUL RYAN (R), HOUSE BUDGET COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: So if Washington is
serious about helping families or serious about getting families out of
work back to work, then it needs to get serious about our national debt.
How do we do it? First, we stop spending money we don`t have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: We can`t spend money we don`t have, right? Well, how about the
fact that Ryan`s serious budget gives millionaires a tax break of at least
$200,000. That`s serious all right. Seriously flawed.
And while this budget might never pass Congress, here is what is scary.
Congressman Ryan is looking to chair the ways and means committee which has
power over the tax code and the safety net.
As the "New York Times" said that would put a man with a very dangerous
idea in a position to do serious damage. That`s why this fight matters.
That`s why the president isn`t backing down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: We have to get bail the middle class. We got to give opportunity
for everybody who strives for it. We have to make sure everybody Black,
White, Latino, Asian, Native Americans with or without a disability, folks
from the inner city and outside the borders of the city, everybody has a
chance. America is a place for everybody. That`s what we are fighting
for. That`s what I need you to get out there and talk about.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: America is a place for everybody, not a place for dangerous
ideas and a ruthless war on the poor.
Joining me now is Congresswoman Donna Edwards, Democrat of Maryland and
"the Washington Post" Jonathan Capehart.
Thank you both for coming on the show tonight.
REP. DONNA EDWARDS (D), MARYLAND: Thank you.
JONATHAN CAPEHART, OPINION WRITER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Thanks, Rev.
SHARPTON: Congresswoman Edwards, let me start with you. President Obama
called out Ryan`s heartless budget. Are we going to see more of this from
Democrats in the coming months?
EDWARDS: Well, I think absolutely. I mean, if anybody ever wondered what
it is Republicans would do if they were fully in control, well, this is it.
The Ryan budget slashes everything from education to medical research to
transportation and infrastructure funding to ending Medicare as we know it
and that is true in this budget. And so in case we wondered what
Republicans would do if they had every branch of the government, this is it
and it is bad for the American people.
SHARPTON: You know, President Obama, Jonathan, also joke the current Ryan
plan simply recycles the previous plans. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: If this all sounds familiar it should be familiar because it was
the economic plan in the 2012 campaign. It was their economic plan in
2010. It`s like that movie "Groundhog Day" except it is not funny. If
they try to sell this sandwich (INAUDIBLE) or the meanwich.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The meanwich, I mean. But we have heard a lot of this stuff
CAPEHART: Right. Right. We have. And the other thing about the Ryan
plan which has the same name that it has had, and all those other
iterations path to prosperity is that this is more the Ryan budget -- the
Ryan plan is more of a political document than it is a budget document.
One thing that gets lost in the conversation of the Ryan budget is that
it`s going nowhere because the fiscal year 2015 budget is already set, set
by congressman Ryan and in a deal that Congressman Ryan and Senator Patty
Murray in the Senate put together earlier this year.
SHARPTON: That they were applauded for.
CAPEHART: right, exactly. And so, once you know that and you look at the
details as the president calls it the groundhog day budget, you have --
that is when you know that this is all about politics and setting up,
giving Republicans a message that they could possibly run on in 2014.
SHARPTON: Now, you know, Congress woman the president`s event today
highlighted the need to raise the minimum wage and it`s a proposal
Americans are overwhelmingly supporting by the way. Ninety three percent
of Democrats back the plan as do 69 percent of independents and even 52
percent of Republicans.
The president today told Republicans to walk the walk when it comes to
raising the minimum wage. Listen to this, Congresswoman.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: Next week members of the Congress have a fresh chance to show what
side they are on. They are going to get a yes or no vote on raising
minimum wage all across this country. And they are going to make a clear
choice, talk the talk about valuing hard work and families or walk the walk
and actually value hard working families. You have a choice. You can give
America the shaft or you can give it a raise.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Give America the shaft or give it a raise. These are very
direct and I think in many ways I think it will inspire a lot of Americans
that feel that they have been left out of the discussion to feel like
they`ve got a reason to look at these midterm elections as something that
will represent their interests, Congresswoman.
EDWARDS: Well, I think that is true. And I think what the president said
is this is what we stand for as Democrats, raising the minimum wage in this
country. So that if you work 40 hours a week for minimum wage, you
actually make above the poverty line. Making sure that we raise the wages
of people who work protecting this country who actually haven`t had a raise
in 23 years.
And so, the president is dead on. He knows that this is, you know, not
just a tough sell. It is a good sell for the American people, Republicans,
Democrats and independents support it.
And so, now, it is time for Republicans to put their money really where
their mouths are and raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.
SHARPTON: You know, we have repeatedly heard from Congressman Ryan
referring to takers, Jonathan. And he talks about takers in this society.
Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN: We have got this tail spin of culture in our inner cities in
particular of men not working.
We are coming to a country where we are getting more and more takers than
makers in America.
The left is making a big mistake here. What they are offering people is a
full stomach and an empty soul. The American people want more than that.
We don`t want to turn the safety net into a hammock. The will able body
people to lies in dependency and complacency.
Teach a man how to fish he can feed himself for life. Don`t simply feed
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Don`t the Republicans in particularly Ryan see that this was
rejected by the American people in 2012?
CAPEHART: You would think so, but they don`t see it as a rejection.
That`s why we have seen Paul Ryan -- Congressman Ryan`s path to prosperity
brought back year after year after year because well, quite frankly, that
is where the Republican party is. They believe a lot of them believe in
the takers versus makers nonsense. They believe that the social safety net
is a hammock and that people are perfectly fine and comfortable and happy
living in the hammock as opposed to a safety net as one something that
should -- that needs to be repaired.
And two, that is something that people need a moments of high stress in
their family lives and it is something that, three, they want to leave as
soon as humanly possible, the moment they get the new job or get into
school that allows them to get a better job and get them out of -- get them
out of the safety net and into, back into the middle class, this idea that,
you know, there are people in this country who are willingly living off
public because they want to and like it that way is divisive.
SHARPTON: Well, Congresswoman, that is why the "New York Times" talked
about Mr. Ryan having dangerous ideas and trying to become chairman of ways
and means committee. I mean, can you imagine someone with this idea over
the tax code, over the safety net? I mean, this is frightening to many
people who want to see this kind of politics continue to be marginalized in
EDWARDS: Well, it is frightening, Reverend Al. And I`ll tell you what,
the only takers in this country are employers who pay below the minimum
wage, below the poverty line and then require that their employees get food
stamps and low income heating assistance and those things.
And so, Paul Ryan is saying the Ryan Republican budget is the only thing
that is rally solid in the country. And we need to take that message out
on the road to the American people because now, the choices are very clear.
The choices are very stark.
A Republican Ryan budget sucks the life blood out of the American people or
a Democratic vision that values hard work and that values workers in this
SHARPTON: I`m going to have to leave it there.
Congresswoman Donna Edwards and Jonathan Capehart, thank you both for your
time this evening.
CAPEHART: Thanks, Rev.
EDWARDS: Thank you.
SHARPTON: Ahead, much more from an energetic President Obama today who
unloaded on Republicans still set on repealing Obamacare.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: To give them credit they do have one original idea which is to
repeal Obamacare because they haven`t tried that 50 times.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: And remember all of those wild Obamacare conspiracy theories?
All those kooky predictions, our trip to GOP fantasyland is ahead.
Plus the Supreme Court strikes down another limit on big money in politics.
How the Democrats plan on fighting the billionaire boys club.
And should this homeless mom lose her two kids after leaving them in a car
while on a job interview? You be the judge tonight. Stay with us.
SHARPTON: Breaking news. We are getting reports of a shooting at Fort
Hood, Texas. The U.S. army confirming the shooting at a medical support
building. The shots rang out at 4:30 central time. The suspect is still
at large according to local news reports. There is one person with a chest
wound and several other injuries. There is at least one patient being
transported to the hospital.
Everyone at Fort Hood told to shelter in place, stay away from doors and
windows. We`ll be watching.
SHARPTON: The same justices who gutted the voting act are now taking
another step to undermine democracy and let the rich buy elections.
Today, the John Roberts majority on the Supreme Court stripped away key
limits on political donations, letting people give money to an unlimited
number of candidates and political groups. As you might guess Republicans
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOEHNER: Well, I think this means is that freedom of speech is being
upheld. You all have the freedom to write what you want to write. Donors
ought to have the freedom to give what they want to give.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: This is all about freedom. Freedom for who? The one percent?
Today`s ruling lets America`s big money guys including GOP donors like the
Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson spend as much money they want on
candidates and political groups.
Justice Roberts and his allies on the court are planning it is more
important to let the rich buy elections than to let people vote in those
elections and that is not right.
Joining me now is Joy Reid. Thanks for being here.
Joy, why is the Supreme Court making it easier to buy in an election than
to vote one?
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST, THE REID REPORT: Yes. It is incredible when you put
the rulings together. They say we no longer need the protection of the
voting rights act for the person going in to the ballot count.
SHARPTON: Section four.
REID: Right. But that we also no longer need to limit, in any way
essentially, the ability of a very small number of donors. Because we do
know DEMOS, another groups that put the numbers together. We are talking
about fewer than 1,000 Americans who spend at the level that this will
really make a difference for them, where they can spend millions of dollars
literally. And one justice, good old Clarence Thomas, actually ordered a
separate opinion saying he would have struck down the $2,600 limit on
individual donations to one candidate. So he would like to blow the entire
SHARPTON: So he would not only blow up the cap that they did blow where
you can give -- any candidates ad groups. He would say I will let you give
as much as you want to end the visual cap.
REID: As much as you wanted -- exactly. And they are calling that first
amendment right of free speech. But the problem is at this point, because
of this ruling, some Americans have more speech than others. You know,
this much speech as you can afford. So the person who can afford to give
$200 which very few people even do that is going to be completely dwarfed
now by somebody who can literally spend millions on a single campaign.
SHARPTON: Well, you know, Justice Stephen Breyer wrote delivered to senate
against today`s ruling. He said quote " fails to recognize the difference
between influence resting upon public opinion and influence bought by money
alone." He also wrote where money calls the tune, those ideas representing
the voices of the people will not be heard. Strong language from justice
REID: Well, absolutely. Because if you think about it, somebody who has
the desire to do had the financial where with all the do it could
essentially say I am going to buy this entire block of house races. I`m
going to buy an entire block of state Senate races where the money is even
But on the federal level we are talking about the ability to have
tremendous and broad influence that no ordinary citizen could ever muster.
Because again, it is the small minority of Americans who even give $200 and
$250 in a campaign, let alone people who can give literally millions.
SHARPTON: Or when you have various fights going on whether it is same sex
marriage or whether it is stand your ground or immigration, they can go to
the states and now just blanket it with all of the legislators getting
maxed out and the political action groups and the party and you have to
really try to build a lot of forces to fight that instead.
REID: And then think about the pragmatic impact of this, for instance.
Let`s say that you have an industry that had -- that they want deregulation
of their particular industry. That means that the people who could be
potentially harm by the deregulation, we have seen giant oil spills, we
have seen the chemical and coal ash spills into the rivers in some of the
southern states. We have seen really catastrophic sort of negative results
They could not buy that kind of deregulation by putting in place a panicky
of politicians who would never vote to regulate their industry. Could any
individual person who wants to drink a clear glass of water in West
Virginia ever afford to stand up to them? Absolutely not.
SHARPTON: Joy Reid, thank you for your time tonight. Be sure to catch Joy
on "the Reid Report" weekdays at 2:00 p.m. eastern right here on MSNBC.
And of course, voting rights and election fairness will be part of my civil
rights groups national network convention next week. President Obama will
be a key note speaker for the biggest gathering of civil rights leaders
this year. We will be talking about criminal justice, social justice,
women`s issues, economic equality and how to improve the future of our
kids. That is April 9th through the 12th right here in New York City.
Coming up, for years we have heard all of the Obamacare theories, the
mistrue, the scare tactics, the sky is falling predictions. The president
took them on today.
SHARPTON: More on the breaking news we are learning out of Fort Hood. We
are hearing reports of an active shooting there. Everyone at Fort Hood,
Texas, ordered to shelter in place. The entire base now on lockdown. The
shooting apparently began at a medical support building. Local news
reports indicate there have been several injuries.
Joining me now is former FBI profiler Clint Van Zandt.
Clint, are you there?
CLINT VAN ZANDT, FORMER FBI PROFILER (via phone): Yes. What we are
hearing so far, again, has to be confirmed, but we are told there are at
least two shooters, one may be in custody or one may be down. We are also
told there are multiple injuries. And has since people who have been
injured or wounded.
Now, Al, what makes this not only -- what makes it more significant is an
alert issued by the FBI just yesterday suggesting a man with the last name
of Booker who also has a Middle Eastern name, last name Hasan had tried to
join the military and was released just recently saying that he wanted to
commit some type of Jihad at Fort Hood.
The FBI also suggested at that time there may be more individuals that were
involved with him. Now, I say that that alert was issued yesterday and now
today we have this believed shooting. Whether the two are connected or
not, we don`t know.
SHARPTON: I think, Clint, we have a graphic of that. Will the control
room put up the graphic of who he is speaking of. This is the subject of
an FBI alert, planned Fort Hood-inspired Jihad against U.S. soldiers by
army recruit. Now, we do not know if there is a connection but this was
put up yesterday about Mohammed Abdullah Hasan aka Booker. Am I right,
VAN ZANDT: Yes, Al. And of course, this is right on the hill five years
ago. November in `09, of course, we had the terrible shooting that was
done by Major Hasan. Now, there is a different spelling of the last name.
But otherwise, this has to just scare the heck out of the people at Fort
Hood to think it is de ja vu one more time, all over again. Of course,
this is at a medical facility so it has the ring of five years ago when
they went through the very same thing.
SHARPTON: Now again, we don`t know if there is a connection, but this
alert was put out yesterday. And again, we are being told that one, there
may have been two shooters and one may have been apprehended or down and
one is at large. These are unconfirmed reports though, Clint.
VAN ZANDT: Yes. Everything right now, Al, is in a state of flux.
Obviously, if there is still an active shooter they, as you said earlier,
have told everybody to shelter in place and they will have the law
enforcement scouring that base trying to come up with the second shooter if
there is one before he or she is able to hurt someone else.
SHARPTON: Now, Fort Hood you referenced was the scene of a terrible
shooting. Remind our listeners about what happened right there at Fort
Hood. Tell our viewers who may not be -- who may be sketchy on that what
you are referring to, Clint.
VAN ZANDT: Sure. This was in November of 2009 when an army major by the
name of Nidal Hasan. He was a medical doctor, a psychiatrist who using his
own weapons that he had purchased outside of the base came on the base and
started shooting soldiers, men, women, anyone that he could get a beat on,
he was shooting at the time. He was finally engaged in a shootout with law
enforcement officers on the base and he was shot and critically wounded.
He remains in custody, has physical challenges and, of course, is charged
with all of the shootings, dozens of individuals that were either wounded
or killed and many, many shots fired. So, you know, since that time Fort
Hood like any other base has taken as many steps as they can to protect the
men and women on those bases both military and civilian. And this man we
are talking about, Al, this individual who the FBI had put the alert out
on, he never actually got into the military. He was recruited.
The military, the FBI found out that he was planning and perhaps
recruiting people to participate in some type of Jihad against the
military. He wasn`t allowed to come into the military. So the question is
how could he have gotten on the base. Well, Al, on a base that big it is
not unfortunately that difficult. People have to come and go every day.
Whether this same individual or somebody associated with him is also
identical to the shooters, we still have to find out.
SHARPTON: Now, we are getting reports that the FBI has been sent to
Fort Hood to the location. Give us a sense of what law enforcement does.
This started around 4:30 I believe. Give us a sense of what is probably
happening at the location right now -- Clint.
ZANDT: There is a number of things. There is a civilian police force
that is on that base. These were the same individuals that engage Nidal
Hasan, the army major in 2009 in that shootout and finally resulted in his
arrest. They will be the first responders as well as first aid people.
So, the first thing is obviously trying to care for those that have been
wounded and injured that are down to include as it`s initially reported at
least one suspect or one shooter. But Al, with the possibility that a
second shooter is still out they are going to be tactical teams pouring on
And Al, we are talking, you know, tens of thousands of acres and
thousands of people on that base at any one time, military and civilian.
So it`s going to be a real challenge trying to get people to shelter in
place and trying to find this one more potential shooter and find out who
he or she is and get them in custody, too. So there are a lot of things
going on simultaneously. One of the things they will do Al, is set up a
command post very quickly where every agency who is contributing people to
try to care for the wounded and try to hunt to see if there`s more
That command post will be put together very fast to make sure that we
don`t have a redundancy, people doing the same thing. If there is another
shooter they have to find that person, they have to find them fast. And in
something like this you have to have coordination. And I would suggest
since 2009, these types of terrible exercises have been practiced all over
military bases in the United States to put together this command structure
if they have an active shooter. So that is what is going on at this
SHARPTON: Clint, let me bring in NBC`s law enforcement analyst Jim
Cavanaugh who is also a former ATF special agent in charge. Jim.
JIM CAVANAUGH, NBC LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST (on the phone): Hello,
Reverend, how are you?
SHARPTON: Fine. What do you make of these unconfirmed reports at
CAVANAUGH: Well, you know, Reverend Al, what Clint was saying is
SHARPTON: I think we are losing Jim. I don`t hear Jim. All right.
Let me go back to you, Clint.
SHARPTON: Whatever connection we had to Jim we do not have. We are
still told there is an active shooter. It is still an active shooter at
large. You were telling me they would set up an immediate command post and
breaking down what is going on around with law enforcement at this point at
ZANDT: Well, there is a lot of interviews, Al. They are going to be
talking to any either, shooting victims, people that are injured or anybody
that is been a witness of what is going on. Right now, they need to
identify if there is a second shooter or perhaps more shooters out there.
We have seen many cases in this country where law enforcement has looked
for a phantom shooter where there really wasn`t a second or third shooter.
So, they have to confirm number one, that somebody else is out there.
Number two, if in fact they have a suspect in custody we need to find
out who he or she was working with. Should it be linked to this FBI alert
I would suggest the FBI and military probably already knows who this
individual was writing to, who he may have been trying to recruit in his --
as of yesterday fantasy about committing some type of shooting, mass
shooting at Fort Hood. But should that individual be related they will be
trying to track him down and anybody else who`s related to him as far as
information down off the base while at the same time, they`ll be looking
for the active shooter on the base.
SHARPTON: NBC News is now reporting that as many as eight people may
have been injured in this shooting on Fort Hood. As many as eight people
may be injured, NBC is now reporting. Clint, there is still a lot of
confusion. And again, we are told about this notice the FBI put out
yesterday on this man booker but we do not know if, in fact, this is one of
the two or the only one that is the shooter today. But it is very, very
interesting. This was put out yesterday and this is around the time of the
same location five years ago that faced a shooting. These kinds of things
just seem to be too strange to be coincidental, Clint or we don`t know.
ZANDT: And unfortunately, if you were this individual and if you
actually were going to commit such an incident, such a shooting, you can
see the terrible reasoning in going back to someplace like Fort Hood one
more time to just terrorize all of the people, they`re really terrorize
everybody in the United States that we like to think that there are safe
places. We think our schools are safe and we see Sandy Hook. We think
military bases are safe and then we see Fort Hood. So, you know, there are
people out there trying to send the message that we are not safe in our own
SHARPTON: We are being told now by NBC News there may be two
shooters. And one has apparently been taken into custody, possibly shot
and wounded. And another one, the other one may still be at large and on
the loose, Clint. NBC News now reporting one is in custody and has
possibly been shot, another still at large and on the loose. Eight people,
as many as eight people may have been injured here at Fort Hood. You were
telling me that the man that the alert was put out by the FBI yesterday at
Fort Hood had never actually been admitted to the military but could still
get on the base.
ZANDT: Again, we don`t know the identity of the one or as we are told
now two shooters. We don`t know if they are related to this FBI alert or
not. Again, it`s not that great of a challenge to get on to a government
facility. Some people have legitimate access as we have seen shootings
take place in Washington, D.C. at the Navy Yard and down in Norfolk last
week when a shooting took place. So, some people have an access card that
actually gives them the ability to get on the base. Others may steal that
documentation or they may be able to present themselves as a visitor and
somehow get on the base.
We know a number of years ago individuals had planned on getting on a
large military facility in New Jersey. The way they were going to do it is
pizza delivery people knowing that military bases soldiers order pizzas all
the time, they were going to come in in separate vehicles allegedly caring
pizzas for delivery, and then we`re going to attack the base. So, Al,
there are people out there every day thinking of new ways to try to hurt us
and try to make us afraid in our own country.
SHARPTON: Well, Clint, I`m going to ask you to hold on a minute, we
are going to take a break, we`ll be right back. As of now as many as eight
people NBC is reporting has been shot on the Fort Hood base and two
shooters, one apparently has been taken into custody, possibly he has been
shot and wounded. The other still at large. We will be right back after
SHARPTON: We are following this breaking news story. There has been
shootings at Fort Hood. It is reported there are possibly two shooters.
One has been taken into custody. Possibly, shot and wounded and the other
still at large as many as eight people may have been wounded.
Let`s bring back in NBC law enforcement analyst Jim Cavanaugh who has
also been a former ATF special agent in charge. Jim, you have been in many
of these investigations. Give us a sense of what is happening now based on
the unconfirmed reports that we have so far.
CAVANAUGH: Well, Reverend, the base police and certainly AMPS, and
U.S. army, CID are all obviously engaged with the shooter. We further
report from NBC News that one may be shot in custody and there may be
another actor out there. And I heard your discussion with Clint and he was
very spot on. You know, when you have two shooters it`s a little
different. You don`t usually -- it`s not exclusive but you don`t usually
just have a mentally deranged person. Now, that`s just exceptions to those
cases. You remember, Cal Dine (ph) had to --
CAVANAUGH: We had two D.C. sniper. But generally speaking, a
deranged person, it more goes like the Navy Yard shooter where one person.
Because you don`t usually recoup somebody until you`re delusion for mass
murder. So, when you get two actors sometimes it leads towards a scenario
of more planning, more criminality like Clintwood and you were discussing a
few minutes ago. Like you brought up the FBI alert. So the FBI is very
good at picking those things out and trying to act on them quickly. And
they put a notice out to law enforcement. And, you know, we don`t know if
that is related.
But, you know, it seems like the FBI was trying to move quickly. And
they are very good about that. Fort Hood, I was the special agent in
charge of Dallas division and been to Fort Hood. It is a huge place, huge
complex. It is like a city in itself. Of course, you know Major Hasan, we
all remember that tragedy and the base police who were able to collar him.
And he was a lone actor who radicalized on the internet with the radical al
Qaeda cleric, false cleric, he really shouldn`t be called the cleric but he
was a terrorist acting as a cleric, Anwar al Awlaki.
And of course, he`s been killed in a drone strike in Yemen. So, he`s
not there anymore. But he had recruited Hasan and of course Hasan did that
horrific fiscal attack on Fort Hood and shot a bunch of our heroes. So, it
is sad to see it go back to the place -- a shooting back at Fort Hood for
whatever the motivations may be because they have already been through it
SHARPTON: Right. And then we are told that the FBI Kansas City,
Missouri division sent out an alert about the recent recruit who we talked
about with Clint named Booker who was also known as Mohammad Abdullah
Hasan, the man reportedly bid farewell to his friends and expressed the
desire to commit an act of violence. Again, we do not know if this is in
any way connected to this shooting. But this alert was put out yesterday.
Let me go to a report by a local station that can give us some information.
This was a few minutes ago. Let`s go. Look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
EMILY COLLINS, KCEN REPORTER: There are very, very few people other
than media right over here near the front Ford Hood gate right now. We
have tried to talk to a few, we did speak to a few soldiers we told you
about a little while ago that were trying to get in the gate and were
unable to because they did not have their correct permits on them. But
other than that, people are scarce around here right now just as the
details are. And all we are being told by Fort Hood is that the base is on
lockdown and they are advising all residents to shelter in place right now.
Now, there are reports that multiple people were shot. There are reports
of some even being transported to the hospital. But other than that we
know very little about what is going on on the base right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Well, it is still an active situation and more breaking.
Let`s take a break.
SHARPTON: Continuing our coverage of breaking news, there has been a
shooting, several shootings in Fort Hood. At least eight people have been
reportedly shot and wounded, possibly two shooters, one taken into custody
and possibly has been shot. The other still at large. We are told with
unconfirmed reports. Let`s go back to Clint Van Zandt. Clint, we have
obviously an active area. We just saw a local report where we are told
very few people around. That is probably because everyone has been told to
shelter in in the area, I assume.
ZANDT: Yes. That would be the case. And again, as you and I
discussed earlier it has only been five years since 13 people were killed
in that November 2009 shooting committed by one man. You know, I was
listening to all of your guests who have spoken on this so far and I agree
with Jim that normally when you have someone with a mental illness you
usually see one person acting alone. But if it is not necessarily a mental
illness, if someone is acting for reasons other than being mentally ill, of
course, we see two people acting together or more.
I think Jim alluded to a number of shootings where we had at least two
people. So, again that may be the case. And as we talk about earlier, the
FBI issued an alert yesterday speaking about one individual who had tried
to join the U.S. army and then was refused admittance in the army when the
military, the FBI determined that this man said he wanted to commit an act
of violence, an act of Jihad. And Fort Hood was referenced I believe in
some of his communications.
So, if it just so happens that this took place today and it is
unrelated, well, Al, you and I, we don`t like coincidences. And that is a
heck of a coincidence right now that the authorities are working very hard
trying to resolve. But in a worst case scenario should it be this
individual or somebody working with him we have a place to start. We know
who we are looking for, we know what the reasons may be. Now we have to
get that at least one more shooter we are told in custody before we start
to sort this out. And again, as you reported earlier at least eight people
SHARPTON: Yes. And we, again, we do not know if this is related but
this alert was issued yesterday. And apparently it comes out of the Kansas
City, Missouri, office of the FBI and the person that has been named
Booker, named as Muhammad Abdullah Hasan reportedly bid farewell to his
friends and Fort Hood was mentioned. But again, we do not know if this is
related at all. We are told that there are possibly two shooters, one in
custody and possibly wounded and eight possibly that have been shot by the
one or both assailants.
Jim, let me ask you, at this point as the FBI and others come in you
say, there`s local law enforcement there, they`re setting up a command
post, what is actually happening as you have been in these things? What
can you tell us is your best guess on what`s going on?
CAVANAUGH: Well, Reverend Al, one thing that happens in these
shootings, in these active shooters that I responded to you always get a
report of a second gunman. It`s pretty common. I think you may remember
we saw that in the Navy Yard.
CAVANAUGH: I have experienced that myself. And what happens is,
witnesses report seeing a person with a gun at one spot and might report
seeing a person with a gun in another spot. Descriptions can differ. And
it may be the same shooter. Sometimes we even got descriptions of
responding plain clothes law enforcement officers who get out of their
vehicles with a long gun. You know, they are shot somewhere, it`s an
emergency. Citizen says, I saw a man with a gun over there and they give
CAVANAUGH: Then it turns out a detective or something. So, it could
be two shooters or it could be one shooter seen by a couple.
SHARPTON: Yes. We don`t know yet.
CAVANAUGH: Yes, we don`t know yet. People are reacting to seeing
different scenes at different places. Let`s go back to KCEN reporter Emily
Collins who just moments ago gave us another report from just outside of
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: At this moment Fort Hood police are actually blocking off
the gate entrance to my right over here. And back here behind me, you can
see there are very few people going through the gate. An ambulance just
went through. There`s been about 20 different emergency vehicles going in
and out of here. But this jeep that you`re going to see right here coming
up is the first vehicle that Ford Hood police have let through. Everyone
else is not even being allowed to cross the barricades right here. So, at
this time, all we know that they are not letting anyone else in except
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: So, only one vehicle has been allowed in. Only emergency
personnel has been allowed in. Again, we are following this story,
shootings in Fort Hood. Eight people we are told has possibly been shot,
as much as two shooters, one in custody and wounded. And we are told
another may still be at large. Let`s take a break and we`ll be right back.
SHARPTON: We`re back following the breaking news in Fort Hood. As
many as eight people reportedly shot, maybe two shooters, one in custody
and one possibly at large. Let me go back to Clint Van Zandt. Clint, what
is happening now looking for the possible other shooter that is at large if
there is another shooter?
ZANDT: A number of things going on, Al. Number one, of course, they
are trying to take care of the injured and wounded. Number two, they are
trying to put as much as they can an iron ring around that area where they
think the second shooter is. They want to get if there is a second person,
get him identified, get him in custody, we can worry about the motive
later. Right now we want to make sure there`s nobody else is shooting.
SHARPTON: And they will, of course, try to have everyone stay in what
they call shelter in and have no one moving. We are told by a local
reporter there is nobody being sighted. So, it appears the shelter in is
in effect. But we still don`t know if the second shooter exists or not.
So, we are going to continue following this breaking news as we watch what
is going on in Fort Hood. Certainly those that are there should stay put
until law enforcement replaced it. Now, let me -- for more coverage, go to
my colleague in Washington, Chuck Todd.
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