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PoliticsNation, Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

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July 9, 2014

Guest: Esther Panitch, Eric Guster, Jim McDermott

REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: And thanks to you for tuning in. I`m
live tonight from Washington, D.C.

Tonight`s lead, breaking news. Right now, President Obama is in Dallas,
Texas meeting with Governor Rick Perry and local leaders about the border
crisis. Within the last hour, the President touched down and was greeted
by Governor Perry who recently attacked President Obama with an off the
wall conspiracy theory.


GOV. RICK PERRY (R), TEXAS: I have to believe that when you do not respond
in any way, that you are either inept or you have some ulterior motive of
which you are functioning from.


SHARPTON: An ulterior motive? It was an attack without any facts and
utterly cynical response to a genuine humanitarian crisis. But all day
long today, it`s been more of the same from Republicans back in Washington.
GOP lawmakers stormed to the Senate floor.


SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: It is a disaster that is the direct consequence
of President Obama`s lawlessness. He`s not visiting the border. He`s not
visiting the children. Apparently there`s no time to look at the disaster
of the devastation that is being caused by his policies.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How can you have a humanitarian crisis as the White
House called this and not want to go see it for yourself?


SHARPTON: They are bashing the President, for not visiting the border
tonight. Some critics are foolishly comparing it to President Bush`s
infamous fly-over of hurricane Katrina, even one democrat is doing it.


REP. HENRY CUELLAR (D), TEXAS: I hope this doesn`t become the Katrina
moment for President Obama, saying that he doesn`t need to come to the

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He could become the President`s Katrina moment because
he does not seem engaged on this either.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is President Obama`s Katrina. If he is down there
with pictures, of thousands of children in jail cells.


SHARPTON: This is about action, not appearances or optics. They want a
secure border? Why don`t they attack House Republicans who blocked the
bill that would do it. But something can be done, right now to help.

The President wants $3.7 billion to deal with the crisis. But today,
Speaker Boehner and the GOP are threatening to deny the request finding it
easier to criticize the President than to solve problems. And if they are
so worried about optics, why don`t they condemn right wingers yelling at a
bus full of mothers and their kids and why don`t they condemn this?


SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: There is also a potentially deadly outcome
of having this influx of illegals crossing into the U.S. and it has to do
with diseases that they are bringing with them. And an exclusive report
about the potential breakout of Tuberculosis.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nurses and other healthcare workers are telling us that
the federal government, the federal government, is covering up the extent
of the health crisis. They say kids have scabis (ph). They also say they
have chicken pox and all out epidemic of lice.


SHARPTON: I fear an all-out epidemic of hypocrisy. Hypocrisy from right
wingers in Washington down to Texas. It is time for them to stop talking
and start acting.

Joining me now, Joe Madison and Bill Press. Thank you both for being here.

BILL PRESS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Good to be here, Reverend.


SHARPTON: Joe, big meeting on immigration going on right now. You think
Governor Perry has a good explanation for the President about what he meant
for ulterior motives?

MADISON: No. And he realizes Reverend Sharpton that the President comes
with potentially $3.7 billion. That, by the way, the local communities
need. They are the ones that are complaining how do we in fact handle all
of this? How can we pay for this and that`s what President is saying.
Here, I have a check. I`m willing to right this check. If the Congress
will pass it and this will help you out.

And let me draw something else that I find very hypocritical, too.
Everyone is criticizing the President, why hasn`t he flown from Washington
to the border. Well excuse me, why hasn`t the governor flown from Austin,
Governor Perry, to his state? He hasn`t even been to the --

SHARPTON: You`re not suggesting that the governor has an ulterior motive
for criticizing the President?

MADISON: I`m not usually into conspiracy theories.

SHARPTON: Let me go back to the money that the President has proposed that
you addressed. Speaker Boehner said that the President`s pending request
fails to secure the border. But in the past, he rejected the President`s
plan to secure the border. Listen to him today and several months ago.


border, nothing`s going to change. And the President`s request, it is all
continuing to deal with the problem.

He is feeding more distrust about whether he is committed to the rule of
law. Listen, there`s widespread doubt about whether this administration
can be trusted to enforce our laws. And it is going to be difficult to
move any immigration legislation until that changes.


SHARPTON: So I mean, if he is just finding any reason it criticize this

PRESS: First of all, hard it tell which was then and which is now because
he keeps saying the same thing old mines. And then you got to understand
that the money -- there are more -- there are more agent at the border
today than there ever has been. The President put them there. There`s
more fence. There is more guards or more drones, more protection at the
border than ever, number one.

Number two, the comprehensive immigration bill that passed a year ago in
the Senate, 14 Republicans voted for, it has all this protection for the
border that the Republicans want. And why? That man, Boehner, has refused
to schedule -- they can`t even debate it and can`t vote on it at the house.

SHARPTON: He won`t put it on the schedule.

PRESS: The final point I would make here, Joe said, I can`t put President
Obama as I said to Congresses, put your money where your mouth is. You
want protection at the border, we need more resources, $3.7 billion. If
they reject this, they are the biggest hypocrites that ever entered the
United States Congress.

SHARPTON: Joe, bottom line, put your money where your mouth is. You
really want reform, you really want to secure borders, $3.7 billion to put
your money where your mouth is.

MADISON: And the reality is, the votes are there for the immigration bill.
We have talked to Republicans and Democrats. That if the vote was taken
today, it would pass because of the 17 Republicans. What is holding it up
is this handful of tea party people and let`s go back to --

SHARPTON: And Speaker Boehner.

MADISON: And Boehner. Boehner cannot make -- he can`t decide whether he
wants to be speaker of the House of Representatives or whether he wants to
protect his -- the position he now has. He is so afraid. This is the most
leaderless speaker that I`ve seen in my lifetime in dealing with politics.

SHARPTON: I don`t want to get off the conspiracy theory too quick because
I mentioned the governor`s conspiracy theory which you have commented on.
But GOP congressman Louie Gohmert, he also has a conspiracy theory. Listen
to this.


REP. LOUIE GOHMERT (R), TEXAS: In the end they said they want to turn
Texas blue, they want to turn America blue. And if you bring in hundreds
of thousands or millions of people and give them the ability to vote,
President Obama`s lawyer`s not going to allow them to ask for an ID so go
vote or you`re going to lose the benefits you`re getting now. That drives
people to vote and it will ensure that Republicans don`t ever get elected


SHARPTON: So first, they block the immigration reform. Then they act as
if the President is purposely causing the crisis at the border.

PRESS: That`s why they`re letting all these young kids come in, because in
two years, they are going to be eligible to vote and they are going to bus
them to the polls and have --

SHARPTON: And President Obama`s lawyers will make sure of that.

PRESS: Louie Gohmert, let`s face it, Louie Gohmert is crazy. And that
proves that he is crazy. If I can just said, if you want to talk about the
impact on the election, you ought to talk to Mitt Romney who got 27 percent
of the vote in 2012. If they keep this up this way, in 2016, they will be
lucky if they get --

SHARPTON: But Joe, this is growing on the right. We are hearing this more
and more. Not just Gohmert. We are hearing a lot of this on the right.

MADISON: Look, these kids, eight, nine, 10-years-old. The President has
two more years in office. He can`t run for a third term. So who in the
hell -- excuse me, Reverend, just pray for me. Who are they going to vote
for? I mean, he won`t even be running for office. This is nuts.

And he also, Gohmert, also needs a history lesson. Because now he is
talking about, you know, let`s do what Wilson did like when he sent black
jack disparaging him. But wait a minute. He ought to realized that he
never --

SHARPTON: Talking about history, (INAUDIBLE) the comparison that some
critics have made to Katrina, the right wing has done it before, many
times. They call the roll out the President Obama`s
Katrina. Before that, it was hurricane Sandy`s aftermath, before that, the
gulf oil spill, then it was h1n1 flu, the Fort Hood shootings, earthquake
in Haiti, housing policies in Chicago, financial crisis, Benghazi, IRS, and
now the border crisis. All comparing to Katrina. This is going to be
President Obama`s Katrina.

I`m just wondering, what is it the President`s Katrina, according to the

MADISON: I just had a hip replacement. So that`s the President`s Katrina,
my new hip.

SHARPTON: This, by the way, new video of the meeting taking place with
President Obama and some of the leaders in Texas.

MADISON: In other words, look, they know Bush blew it during Katrina. We
know that. We know lives are lost. You were there. I was there. We know
that people were dying in the superdome. This has nothing to do with
Katrina. This is nothing more than to reflect, simply deflect anything
that happens, it is Katrina because Bush blew it and they want it make the
President look like he did it.

PRESS: The President is in Texas and he is dealing this as a humanitarian
crisis and humanitarian mission to help, to do the right thing and help
these children. That`s exactly what Bush didn`t do.

SHARPTON: Well, I`m going to have to leave it there. Joe Madison and Bill
Press. And Joe Madison is right. We were in Katrina. I was there. We
didn`t just want Bush to come. We wanted the levies to work. Make
immigration work if you think it`s Katrina. Pass the $4.7 billion. Put
your money where your mouth is.


SHARPTON: Coming up, before coming down in Texas, President Obama was in
Denver touting the economy he is building. And he took another political
shot at Republicans.

And hot car`s dad. Secret pick up Web site reveals new details on his
dirty web page. And naked photo he was sending at his son was dying in a
sweltering hot car.

And this California highway patrolman caught beating a woman is still on
the job. Why? Why is he still on the job? The justice files ahead.


SHARPTON: Tonight, out facebook community is fired up about the right wing
fantasy of impeaching President Obama.

Carol says, impeachment talk is wasting time and money. Let`s get busy
solving U.S. problems. Not trying to do the most ridiculous thing ever.

I agree, Carol.

Betty says, I`d like to impeach Congress for not doing its job.

We`ll have much more on right wings absurd of impeachment talk coming up

Until then, we want to know what you think. Please head over to our
facebook page to join the conversation that keeps going long after the show



Then they have plan to sue me for taking executive actions that are within
my authority while they do nothing. I have a better idea. They should do


SHARPTON: House Republicans should do something to help the country. But
they won`t. Instead Speaker Boehner is putting the final touches on his
plan it sue the President.

"National Journal" reports today he has got a three-week roll-out planned
to get the bogus lawsuit as much attention as possible. Next week a panel
of experts will testify on litigation before the house rules committee.
The week after that, a house panel will debate the plan. And finally, just
before their August break, they will vote on the suit. Speaker Boehner`s
hoping all these technical moves will make the lawsuit legitimate. They
won`t. But the crazy thing is, some on the right don`t think he`s going
far enough.


SARAH PALIN (R), FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR: The one tool they have are the
articles of impeachment, let`s get going on that. And not necessarily,
Sean, a lawsuit being filed by Congress because you don`t bring a lawsuit
to a gun fight. And there`s no place for lawyers on the front line.


SHARPTON: Since when do you call a political disagreement a gun fight?
And pushing impeachment, even Boehner won`t go that far.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Speaker Boehner, former VP candidate Sarah
Palin talking about the bringing a lawsuit to a gun fight, that President
Obama should impeach. What`s your response to Governor Palin?

BOEHNER: I disagree.


SHARPTON: He disagrees. So that is where Speaker Boehner draws the line.
He is willing to obstruct all the President`s priorities, allow a
government shutdown, and even sue the President to appeal to the base.

But impeachment, he thinks that`s going too far. I`m glad Speaker Boehner
has his limits but he should have reached them a long time ago.

Joining me now, are Zerlina Maxwell and Abby Huntsman. Thank you both for
being here.



SHARPTON: Abbey, how is this obsession with impeachment and lawsuits
affecting the public view of GOP leaders in Washington?

HUNTSMAN: Well, to your point, it`s important to recognize and point out
that Speaker Boehner is not for impeaching President Obama. He is just
pursuing the President.

So Rev., I would say that that is a moderate version of what is going on
here. Look, I think there are a number of Republicans, including myself,
that are watching this play out, watching a car crash that is about to
happen and they are saying, don`t do this. Why are you making this
decision when you know there is going to be public backlash?

The question that I have in this lawsuit, though, is it really lacks all
credibility when you look at Presidents before Obama that have all done the
very same thing and more often. And that`s the point of this whole thing.
It is not about immigration, right? It is not about abusing executive

For some folks within the Republican Party, as we often talk about, their
main goal is to take down President Obama. But I will say, what does
surprise me about this situation, is Speaker Boehner. Because we have seen
two sides of Boehner, right? We have seen a side that calls out the far
right and says they can be crazy.

I`m surprised to see him leading the charge on this one. Obviously, his
job is at stake. You saw what happened to Eric Cantor. He knows if he
doesn`t support their cause then his job might be on the line, too.

SHARPTON: Well, Zerlina, you know, this talk about impeachment is all
about appealing to the base. Because one North Carolina Republican told
"the Huffington Post," quote, "most of the conservatives in my area would
like to see impeachment brought to the floor for debate." So it fires up
debate. But is the establishment back firing on the party as a whole, is
the question, Zerlina.

MAXWELL: I think it will back fire. But also this is building since the
Republicans took back the House of Representatives in 2010. In 2009, I
wrote an article about the fact that they were going to try to impeach the
President with faux manufactured scandals like fast and Furious or Benghazi
or IRS. You know, throw it out, you name it, this scandal, and they were
tried to build it up to the level where they can impeach the President.
And I think that it does not surprise me that someone like Sarah Palin on
the extreme right would pull out the "I" word because they been talking
about "I" words all along. In legit imines that was the burst there.

Then now, they are talking about the imperial presidency because he is
using his executive authority. And then the next logical answer is

And so, I think that they are just going further and further to the right.
But like Abby said, there is going to be a huge backlash. Because the
American people want jobs, they want infrastructure and they want a little
bit of help with their student loans. Can we get a little bit of help from

SHARPTON: You know, Abby, Sarah Palin isn`t the only one talking
impeachment. This video from January just surfaced of Iowa senate
candidate, Joni Ernst. Take a look at this.


JONI ERNST (R), IOWA SENATE CANDIDATE: So yes, absolutely and he is
overstepping his bounds. And I do think that yes, he should face those
repercussions. And whether that is removal from office, whether that`s
impeachment. But as a U.S. senator, absolutely. As a U.S. Senator,
though, we have to push that issue. He has become a dictator.


SHARPTON: And Abby, Ernst is now walking back those comments saying that
there is no evidence the President should be impeach. But she is not in a
general election and a close race. Will this turn off undecided voters?

HUNTSMAN: Well, you ask how this will affect the voters more broadly. And
I think in the midterms, obviously, this is the type of stuff that really
fires up the primary voters. But makes me very concerned about 2016
because this is not where the rest of the country is at. And they see this
type of stuff playing out and they`re thinking, how could I be a part of a
party that are seeing this type of stuff.

The advice that I would give is look, we talked about President Obama`s
poll numbers are not where he would like them to be. You know, 40 percent
of the country approves of the President right now. Republicans should let
this breath, let this play out. I mean, they are making it worse on
themselves by talking about a lawsuit, by talking about impeachment. Just
let this go.

SHARPTON: You know, Zerlina, the talkers have been calling the President a
dictator, a radical, forever, I mean. Well, Sean Hannity took an even a
step further. Listen to this.


SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: He has governed as a radical. He has never
shown a propensity to adjust any pragmatic side of this man. He is the
Manchurian candidate. He knows one thing. Radicalism and that is how he`s
governed and he will govern this way to the end.


SHARPTON: The Manchurian candidate? I mean, he is being controlled by
some outside force? I mean, could these attacks get any weirder, Zerlina?

MAXWELL: That one is particularly weird. And I don`t know if that is
because, you know, they are not giving him the credit that is due for the
fact that he has been accomplished and able to become the President of the
United States. I mean, is the question there that he is not smart enough
or intelligent enough or capable enough to be the commander in-chief as he
has done successfully the past six years. Whether you agree with him
politically, I think there is undermining the president`s legitimacy and
authority in questioning the fact of whether or not he actually deserves to
be where he is.

HUNTSMAN: Well, and this is the group that has been doing that since the
day he came into office.


HUNTSMAN: And that is not going to change any time soon.


SHARPTON: All right, I`m going to have to leave it there. Zerlina Maxwell
and Abby Huntsman, thank you both for your time.

And be sure to watch Abby on "the Cycle" weekdays at 3:00 p.n. eastern
right here on MSNBC.

Still ahead, we are waiting new comments from President Obama on the
humanitarian crisis on our southern border. We will have that for you live
in just a few minutes.

Also, Paul Ryan is confronted with the real face of poverty. We`ll show
you how one woman demolished the right wing talking point.

And new photos from the daily Web site of the dad accused of killing his
baby son in a hot car. How could his secret life affect the case? It is
in tonight`s justice file.


SHARPTON: Tonight, new questions about the secret life of the dad accused
of killing his baby son. By leaving him in a sweltering hot car. These
photos from a dating Web site could provide a clue to the case.

Also, outrage over the patrolman shown beating a woman in this video.
Should he still be on the job? You be the judge. The justice files are


SHARPTON: We`re back with the Justice Files. The big criminal justice
stories making headlines today.

Joining me now is legal analyst Esther Panitch and criminal defense
Attorney Eric Guster. Thank you both for being here.



SHARPTON: Was it an accident or was it murder? As investigators dig
deeper into how a 22-month-old boy died in a sweltering car last month,
more details are emerging about the boy`s father`s social media footprint.
Today, we`re learning about the secret flirty pick-up sites he visited.
These are profile photos showing what appears to be Ross Harris on the
flirty site called Police say he met at least one of the six
women he was sexting with on this site.

He was allegedly texting naked photos of his private parts at the same time
his son was dying in the car. On this site, Ross used the profile name,
RJ. It lists his age at 27 years old, even though he is 33. It also
reads, quote, "Just looking to talk. Message me. I`m harmless."
Prosecutors say, Harris exchanged nude photos with multiple women. One was
just 16 years old. That say it was all part of Ross`s desire to lead a
double life.


now that he has this whole second life that he is living with alternate
personalities and alternate personas.


SHARPTON: Harris is charged with murder and the death of his 22-month-old
son. He has pleaded not guilty remains in jail after the judge denied
bail. Esther, what did these new photos mean for the case, if anything?

PANITCH: Well, they may be a red herring or they many provide motive for
why Ross Harris did what he is accused to have been doing. The issue alone
that he was sexting doesn`t make him a murderer. But the prosecutors are
going to have to show annexes between that. So, for example, if the wife
knew about these sexting issues, then it probably wasn`t a motive for
murder. If she didn`t know, then it could have been. So prosecutors
really need to dealt in and find more of a link between the sexting and the

SHARPTON: Now, when you go with this, you find that NBC, let me put it
this way, NBC found profile that appears to belong to Harris. In February
of 2013 he wrote, quote, "I`m now in my dream job. I have a beautiful 6-
month-old son, and love going to work every day. I couldn`t be happier."
Now these postings stopped on June 18th. The day Cooper died in the hot
SUV and Harris was taken into police custody. So we`re seeing two
different personalities reflected here?

PANITCH: Yes, we are.

SHARPTON: Eric, I`m sorry. I should have directed that. Eric?


GUSTER: Well, we are seeing two different personalities in this issue,
Reverend Al. Because this man has shown himself as being, I`m a loving
father. I love my wife. But then on the other hand, he`s going on web
sites trying to attract women. And not only has he done that, he has been
caught texting and sexting women. And not just women, but girls. Because
one of the people, one of the young ladies he was texting was 16 years old.
Which is a totally different charge from this murder charge that he is
actually facing. Not only does he have problems with the murder charge of
his son, but he will probably have charges in references to the sexting
because that is illegal to send pictures like that.

SHARPTON: Now authorities, Esther, are homing in on the child`s car seat
as a piece of the evidence. Quote, "the boy`s parents had purchased the
new forward-facing child seat six weeks ago. But just a few weeks before
his death, they switched back to his old seat for reasons not made clear."
Now, Cooper was several inches too big for the rear-facing seat. Why is
this important to investigators, Esther?

PANITCH: Well, it may show that this was planned. That even though they
knew he should have been in a forward-facing seat, they intentionally kept
him in a rear-facing seat. There are lots of reasons they could have done
it, in fact, if they wanted to hurt their son. He would be facing the son
the way the car was laid out, if he was facing the back window.
Additionally he was put on the highest strap, which is designated for a new
born. Which would show that they were really trying to restrict his
ability to move and to help himself. Which if that was their intent just
makes this crime that much more horrible.


PANITCH: But we don`t know, I mean, these are facts that would come out.
It could have been as innocent as switching cart seats, they only had one
forward-facing but they had swapped between the parents. We just don`t
know at this point.

SHARPTON: Well, we will certainly going to stay all over this. Eric,
let`s move on to Los Angeles. And calls for federal investigation into
this police caught beating this woman on camera.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Bleep) Oh he was beating the --



SHARPTON: We`re learning the California highway patrolman seen in this
video has been with the department for a year and a half. And he`s been
assigned to desk duty pending the investigation. He is still getting paid.
Still on the job. Still getting paid. No suspension. Thirty seconds for
both, starting with you Eric. Should we see charges here?

GUSTER: I believe there is a descent chance for charges in this particular
case. Because police officers, they have a right to use force but only the
amount of force that is required to subdue a suspect. This lady appears to
have some type of mental issues. She was walking along the freeway, she
was not obeying the police officer`s orders. She was walking without
shoes. Which may indicate some other type of issue. And unfortunately, we
don`t have sound with the video, we don`t know if she was making threats,
if she was threatening this officer. So, I do believe an investigation
will possibly result in charges.

SHARPTON: All right. Esther, what do you think?

PANITCH: Well, there is absolutely no excuse for that type of brutality.
The police officer is the professional. This woman may have had
psychiatric problems but the officer should be trained to deal with them.
Possibly, one, you know, restraining her a little bit, but 15 punches. To
me, that`s excessive.

SHARPTON: It doesn`t matter what she was saying, it doesn`t matter what
shoes she had or not. Fifteen punches on one woman, I`m with you on that

GUSTER: I agree with you. It was too excessive. I wasn`t saying it
wasn`t, Reverend Al.

SHARPTON: I know you want to get it straight before we go.

PANITCH: And I agree with Eric.

SHARPTON: Eric Guster, Esther Panitch, thank you for your time tonight.

GUSTER: Thank you.

PANITCH: Thank you.

SHARPTON: Coming up. We are waiting to hear from President Obama after
this meeting with Governor Perry in Texas. Stay with us.


SHARPTON: We`re back with breaking news tonight. President Obama is about
to make a statement from Dallas on the humanitarian crisis at the border.
We`ll bring you the President`s comments live just as soon as he starts.
But we turn now to the economy. Earlier today, the President was in Denver
talking about building an economy for everyone.


PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: That`s what makes this country
great. A sense of common purpose and patriotism. And economic patriotism.
It says we fall and we rise as one nation. As one people. We need
economic patriotism that says it is a good thing that everyone gets health
insurance. That`s not a bad thing. That`s a good thing. It`s a good
thing when women are paid the same as men for doing the same work. That
not un-American.


It`s a good thing when nobody works full-time isn`t living in poverty.
That`s not un-American. That`s not radical. It`s right. It`s what built
this country.


SHARPTON: It`s not radical. It is right. But while the President was
talking about getting working Americans out of poverty, Paul Ryan was back
on Capitol Hill holding a fifth hearing on poverty. And the safety net.
And after a month of hearings from so-called experts, Republicans finally
agree to hear from someone actually living in poverty. Tiana Gaynes Turner
(ph), a mother of three from Philadelphia testified today. Tiana, her
husband and their three children have been homeless twice. All three kids
suffer from medical disabilities. Tiana and her husband both work and
together earn about $300 a week. It is nearly impossible to make ends meet
without government assistance.


UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Could anyone live off of that amount of money like I
do and the amount has been every day? Every month. Every week. It`s
difficult. It is not something that we choose to do. I don`t know one
person, maybe in this room, that can juggle the things that me and my
husband have to juggle every single day. With having three children on
medical disabilities, going back and forth to work. Sometimes maybe having
to take an under the table job just to bring in extra money.

There`s not a lazy bone in my body. No one who lives in poverty wants to
stay on government assistant programs. We want to be independent. We want
to work hard and believe in the American dream, that if I work every day,
get up at 7:00 in the morning and my husband gets up and we work, that we
will have the same jobs, benefits, wages, paid sick leave as everyone else.


SHARPTON: That`s all anyone in this country wants and it is what the
President continues to fight for. As republicans continue their war on the

Joining me now is Congressman Jim McDermott, democrat for Washington who
serves on the House Budget Committee. Congressman, thank you for being
here tonight.

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT (D), WASHINGTON: It`s good to be here, Rev.

SHARPTON: The testimony we just heard was incredibly powerful. I mean,
why did it take so long to get a real person who is living in poverty to
testify at one of these poverty hearings?

MCDERMOTT: Well, we ask and we ask and we ask and we ask. And finally, I
think Mr. Ryan seemed like a compassionate conservative so he brought her
on. And she stole the show. She was so powerful.

SHARPTON: Now, you know, Republicans have repeatedly insinuated
congressman, that people on government assistance are lazy. Listen to


REP. PAUL RYAN (R), WISCONSIN: We don`t want to turn this safety net into
a hammock that lulls able-bodied people into lives of dependency and

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Why don`t you just pay for your clothes, pay for your
shoes, pay for your housing.

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: Self reliance means, if anyone will
not work, neither should he eat.

NEWT GINGRICH (R), FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: Really poor children in really
poor neighborhoods have no habits of working and have nobody around them
who works.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Supplemental nutritional assistance
program. The Buy Beer program with the government credit card.


SHARPTON: But the witness today made it very clear there`s not a lazy bone
in her body. And how they are doing all they can and still can`t make ends
meet with three children with disabilities.

MCDERMOTT: She is working at a part-time job. Her husband is working at a
part-time job. And they make about together $300, about $320 after taxes.
Now, that`s a $1200 a month. There isn`t any place in the United States
you could live on $1200 a month in any kind of style at all. Without the
snap, without the food stamp program they would not have food for their
table. And Paul Ryan is sitting up there smiling, that his budget that he
put up, cuts $137 billion on the food stamp program. I mean, they want to
seem like they care, but when you put and look at their deeds, they clearly
don`t care about the poor. It`s an absolute war on poor people in this

SHARPTON: You know, Republicans love to say since you brought up snap,
they love to say that welfare programs like food stamps are overrun with
fraud. But look at this new study about the snap or food stamp program.
The overpayment rate for the system is that just over 2.5 percent. That`s
the lowest overpayment rates since 1981, Congressman.

MCDERMOTT: It is no surprise to me, Al. The people who come forward for
food stamps, by and large, are people who are hungry and need it. They are
not trying to cheat the system, trying to get a fist fall of coupons or
whatever so that they can somehow steal from the government. These are
hungry people, a lot of them very proud like Miss Tiana. It was hard for
her to sit there and tell how poor she really was and what she has to deal
with with her two kids that are on medication. She`s got all kinds of
problems. And he still has to beg for food stamps from Paul Ryan. He
doesn`t care that she can`t make it without food stamps.

SHARPTON: You know, it has taken a toll because the recent poll asked
Americans, what it means when someone says they are a republican. Twenty
one percent said it means that they support wealthy and business. They
support the wealthy and business. And are not for the people. The only
description that registered more often was conservative or right wing.

MCDERMOTT: Well, you know, you`re going to see tomorrow on the floor, us
put a big great tax break-in permanently for rich people but we`re still
trying to decide whether we can have food stamps and we got unemployment
benefits. We got three million people out there who have no money. Now,
they said, well, of course when we don`t give them the benefit, they will
go find a job. The long-term unemployment has not dropped in the six
months since the Republicans cut off the people who are on long-term
unemployment. Just cutting people off doesn`t make them able to find a job
if they are not skilled or there is nothing out there for them, they can`t
find a job and they are out there all over the place. They simply don`t
recognize what it`s like for ordinary people. Congressmen make $170,000.


MCDERMOTT: And we don`t understand.

SHARPTON: Congressman, we have to leave it there. Congressman Jim
McDermott, thank you for your time this evening. Stay with us. We`ll be
right back.


SHARPTON: We`re back with breaking news tonight. President Obama`s about
to make a statement from Dallas on the humanitarian crisis at the border.
The President just wrapped up a roundtable meeting with leaders in Texas,
including Governor Rick Perry, to discuss the tens of thousands of
immigrants children who have flooded into the U.S. GOP lawmakers have
blamed the president for the crisis. Even as they refuse to act on real
immigration reform here in Washington.

Back with me now is Congressman Jim McDermott, democrat from Washington.
Congressman, thank you for staying with me.


SHARPTON: Tonight, I want to ask you, what is your reaction to all of the
GOP rhetoric we have heard on this humanitarian crisis in Texas, over

MCDERMOTT: Well, Al, it`s like everything else. If the President hit a
home run, the Republicans will say he lost the ball. They simply will
never give him credit for anything that he does. He has put budgets and
they have stalled them and blocked them for all this time to have people to
do this. He now comes forward with a bill that says exactly what they have
been talking about and they reject it and say, well, it is not enough or
it`s too -- they simply will not work with the President. They would
rather have the problem than solve it. That what is really going on here.

SHARPTON: Now, he was greeted at the airport at a tarmac by Governor Rick
Perry who first said he wasn`t going to greet him. Then he did. After he
got the meeting he wanted. But he has also raised that there were ulterior
motives, raising some really, in my opinion, strange conspiracy theories
around the immigration crisis and the President. How do you read what
Perry is doing here, Congressman?

MCDERMOTT: Perry is getting ready to run for president. And he will say
anything that he thinks will help him get down the road. You have to
remember, again, it`s by your -- he has refused to take Medicaid and he`s
got hundreds of thousands of people in Texas who do not have health care.
And yet he has given the stories about the president once these kids to
come up here and get shuffled around, he has all this crazy theory.
Nothing about Rick Perry made sense and people are seeing it right on

SHARPTON: Yes. I`m going to have to take a quick break. We`re waiting on
President Obama to come out and make a statement in Dallas after that
meeting. Congressman, stay with me. We`re going to take a break. We`ll
be right back.



SHARPTON: We`re back live with Congressman Jim McDermott as we await
President Obama`s statement on the border crisis. Thanks for watching, and
thanks for staying with me, Congressman.

MCDERMOTT: Thank you.

SHARPTON: As we wait on the President, Congressman, the $3.7 billion that
the President has requested of Congress, the challenge we put out on the
show tonight, with several guest, why don`t they put their money up where
their mouth is if they really want to secure the border and have real
immigration reform?

MCDERMOTT: That`s the whole point, Al. They never -- the bible says, by
their deeds he shall know them. And when you make this offer and say, here
is the amount of money it will take to do the job, put the money up and
they don`t do it. You know that whatever their mouth is saying, it is not
true. They do not care about this border issue. They want to use it as a
political tool to inflame the right wing and they simply, if they wanted to
do something about this, they have a bill from the Senate that is sitting
on the desk in the House.

Now, if John Boehner were to put that up for a vote, he would have 200
democratic votes immediately and probably there are 30 or 25 reasonable
Republicans who go along with it and we would be moving in the direction of
solving this immigration problem. They don`t want to solve the immigration
problem. They could bring it up and amend it. They can use the whole
process. And they simply want the problem, not the solution.

SHARPTON: Well, I`m going to have to leave it there. That`s why people
watch this show, Congressman. Where else could you have a congressman from
Washington quote the bible to a preacher?

Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton, stay tuned for the President`s live
statement from Dallas. And "HARDBALL" starts right now.


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