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PoliticsNation, Friday, July 11th, 2014

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POLITICS NATION
July 11, 2014

Guest: Jonathan Gruber, Lisa Bloom, Perry Thurston, Eric Guster, Carmen
St. George

REVEREND AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: And good evening, Dr. Dyson. And
thanks to you for tuning in.

Tonight`s lead, the GOP`s lawsuit impeachment hysteria. House Republicans
are have now set a date for the first hearing on their lawsuit, the lawsuit
against the President. They will go at it next Wednesday. And today, the
leader of the Republican Party couldn`t be happier.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: I wanted Obama to fail at what he
has done. I wanted him to fail at growing government. Obama is doing it
by himself and he`s bragging about it. He`s promising to do even more by
himself.

If they won`t do their job, I will. I`m not going to sit around, I`ll do
it.

And he`s doing it. That`s why he`s being sued.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Listen carefully. Limbaugh accusing the President of bragging,
the same language used by the man bringing the lawsuit, Speaker John
Boehner.

Quote "the current President believes he has the power to make his own
laws, at times even boasting about it."

There you have it. The two leaders of the GOP on the same page. They
would rather sue the President for delaying part of the health care law
than focus on real issues. Speaker Boehner has no vote scheduled on
immigration, minimum wage, unemployment insurance or equal pay for equal
work. Instead, they are busy with political stunts exposing their own
hypocrisy.

Back in 2006, President Bush was rolling out a new health care law,
Medicare part D. As a key deadline approached, the President decided low
income seniors should have more time to sign up. So he waived the
deadline.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: As we head for a
May 15th deadline, I want to make this very clear. If you are eligible for
extra help, if you are a low income senior, the May 15th deadline doesn`t
apply to you. in other words, you can apply after May 15th without
penalty.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: A Republican President delaying part of a health care law.
Democrats didn`t sue or threaten to impeach. It would have been are
ridiculous and harmful to the country. And yet that`s exactly what
Republicans are doing now.

Joining me now a former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell and political
strategist Angela Rye. Thanks to both of you for joining me.

ANGELA RYE, POLITICAL STRATEGIST: Thank you, Rev.

ED RENDELL (D), FORMER GOVERNOR, PENNSYLVANIA: My pleasure.

SHARPTON: Governor, should it be alarming to the Republicans that the
speaker of the house has started to sound like Rush Limbaugh?

RENDELL: Sure, it should. It should be alarming to any right-thinking
Republican who is interested in winning on this Senate and congressional
election coming up what the party is doing. I mean, Rev., have you ever
seen the movie "Dumb & Dumber"? I mean, this impeachment talk and now this
talk about suing the President for something he did two years ago. It`s
"dumb and dumber." It is turning bright thinking voters, Republicans,
independent, Democrats, moderate Republicans, they have to think, my party
is crazy. My party doesn`t want to do real work, accomplish anything. And
they want to waste our time on stuff like this. It`s "Dumb & Dumber".

SHARPTON: Let`s show more of why people might question why they are a
little crazy, Angela.

Because last year, right after President Obama are delayed the employee
mandate, speaker Boehner said he was glad. He urged the President to delay
more of the law. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOEHNER: I`m glad the President recognized that his health care law is not
good for our economy. But just delaying the employer mandate frankly isn`t
good enough. And today we sent a letter to the President asking him to
justify delaying the employer mandate while leaving in place the mandate on
individuals and families.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So just to be clear, the speaker`s first reaction was to praise
the delay. And to push for more of a delay. But now he wants to sue over
it, Angela.

RYE: Well, Rev., to use Governor Rendell`s language it was dumb to ever
try to repeal the affordable care act. It was dumber to try to repeal it
over 50 times. And now this is dumbest in action with this lawsuit. And
not only is it dumbest, it is wasteful of taxpayer dollars. This is a
taxpayer-funded lawsuit. I thought these folks were fiscal conservatives.
But rev., I know these folks aren`t actually hypocritical, right? Really.

SHARPTON: Yes, right.

RYE: So I think it`s clear on its face. You showed exhibit A of that
happening, in action. These folks want with it to fail by any means
necessary. They have shown it above and beyond. Rush Limbaugh said it on
his show today. As you say, the President of the party. So it`s very
clear what they are about. And it`s not about ensuring that the American
people have the health care they need, the access they need or anything
else. It is about trying to ensure that this President fails until he
walks out of the White House and turns the lights off.

SHARPTON: And you know, Governor, there really is -- it is really all
leading to this impeachment talk and is chipping away at the legitimacy of
the President.

For example, Speaker Boehner was asked about impeaching President Obama
back in 2006. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi back in 2006 was asked about
impeaching President Bush. Now, I want you to listen. As I said, this
week Mr. Boehner was asked about it. `06 Pelosi was asked about impeaching
President Bush. Listen to the difference in the answers.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOEHNER: Listen, I think this is a battle between the two branches of
government. Others could make a determination about whether it is
impeachable or not.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: Impeachment is off the
table.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: That`s a pledge?

PELOSI: Well, it is a pledge -- yes. It`s a pledge. Of course it is. It
is a waste of time.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So Boehner is against impeachment, but it`s for others to
determine. Pelosi slammed the door. No, that`s off the table. There is
no real leadership. It is a question, is he the speaker of the House or
the microphone of the tea party, Governor?

RENDELL: Well, and most importantly, I can`t believe Congressman Boehner
could, again, be that dumb. He knows what the constitution says. The
constitution doesn`t say that the President can be impeached because he
makes a decision that they think is out of the bounds of the constitution.

The constitution clearly states that a President can only be impeached for
high crimes and misdemeanors. Let Speaker Boehner tell the American people
which high crime or misdemeanor President Obama is guilty of.

SHARPTON: And you know, Angela, the silver ling in all of this, is it has
energized President Obama. I mean, it is really energized him. Look at
this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You hear some of them. Sue
him. Impeach him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes!

OBAMA: Really? Sometimes I feel like saying to these guys, I`m the guy
doing my job. You must be the other guy. So rather than wage another
political stunt that wastes time, wastes taxpayer money, I`ve got a better
idea. Do something.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: I mean, he knows he has a political winner here, Angela, doesn`t
he?

RYE: He absolutely does, Rev. I mean, you have the speaker of the House
who should know not only the constitution, but should know what the
President can do within his authority. The first quote you showed from
speaker Boehner today said that the President, they thinks he can make his
own laws. Yes, he can. They are called executive orders. They have legal
action tied to them. That is absolutely what he can do. And they have
used the talking points that he is, you know, above the law and he goes --
supersedes what his boundaries are.

This guy is the President of the United States, the commander in chief.
And not only do they need to demonstrate some type of respect, they need to
demonstrate that they might be able to work with him. He has a year and a
half left. He`s not going anywhere any time fast. They might as well do
something before the election.

SHARPTON: Well, but they have not waited for a year and a half. Let`s not
forget, Governor, the meeting the night of the first inaugural ball,. `09.
First one, they were planning how to get rid of this President.

RYE: That`s right.

SHARPTON: How to delegitimize this President. And they have never
stopped. Some on the right want this lawsuit to be the first step to
impeachment.

Sarah Palin wrote today ;quote "Obama can keep laughing and say so sue me
to the House`s tepid lawsuit threat. Let`s hear him laugh off
impeachment."

I mean, will Boehner`s lawsuit satisfy the right wing or whet its appetite
for even more drastic action like impeachment, Governor?

RENDELL: Well, no. Look, these people -- Angela got it right. Although,
Angela, President Bush has two and a half years left. Let`s not hurry him
out.

RYE: Fair enough. I`m sorry. Math was bad. I went to law school. I`m
sorry about that.

RENDELL: There you go. Well, you`re absolutely right, Rev. There is no
end to their insatiable, I think, hatred of the President. And it is
irrational hatred.

Ironically, the lawsuit is the right remedy, not impeachment. If you
believe the President has overstepped his bounds, you have the right to go
ahead and sue and the courts determine whether the President has violated
his constitutional powers. That`s the way we determine and decide things
in the United States of America. We don`t impeach people except for high
crimes and misdemeanors. Speaker Boehner, read the constitution.

SHARPTON: Well, they are doing a lot of things that we don`t do as
Americans.

RYE: And they lost once already.

SHARPTON: We are going to continue raising that to the public`s attention.

Governor Ed Rendell and Angela Rye, thank you both for your time tonight.
Have a great weekend.

Coming up, they hammered President Obama for selling the affordable care
act with a comedian. Tonight, the numbers are in and he has the last
laugh.

Plus, nearly one year from the George Zimmerman verdict, we look at the
fight against the shoot first and ask questions later law.

And you might have heard that Lebron James is in the news today. He`s
going home to Cleveland. But he`ll have are some political company. We`ll
explain that.

Big show tonight. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Our facebook fans had a strong reaction to Speaker Boehner`s
decision to move forward with his stunt to sue President Obama.

Jason says, so he unveils a bill to sue Obama but not a bill to help fix
the immigration issue?

Exactly, Jason.

Marie says, that`s all the GOP does -- waste time and money.

And Lars points out, history will not be kind to these obstructionists.

You might be right, Lars.

We want to know what you think. Please head over the to our facebook page
to join the conversation that keeps going long after the show ends.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Before Republicans were suing President Obama over the health
care law they were freaking out about this, his appearance about promoting
the law on the spoof web show "Between Two Ferns".

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So do you go to any websites that are dot com or dot
net or do you stick with dot govs?

OBAMA: We go to dot gov. Have you ever heard of healthcare.gov?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here we go. OK. Let`s get it out of the way. What
did you come here to plug?

OBAMA: Well, first of all, I think it`s fair to say I wouldn`t be with you
here today if I didn`t have something to plug. Have you heard of the
affordable care act?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. I heard about that. That`s the thing that
doesn`t work.

OBAMA: Healthcare.gov works great now. And millions of Americans have
gotten health insurance plans. And what we want is for people to know that
you can get affordable health care.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: It was fun, but Republicans said he was wasting his time, going
Hollywood. But a video that was huge. It was a huge success on two
fronts.

This week we learned that the episode is up for an Emmy award. And his
real goal, getting people to sign up for coverage, the video helped the law
go way past expectations.

One recent study found 20 million Americans gained health insurance under
the health care law. Gallup tracks the percentage of Americans without
health insurance and it has fallen to its lowest level since 2008. But you
know what might be my favorite statistic, 78 percent of Americans who
gained insurance under the law are satisfied with their new coverage,
including 74 percent of Republicans. The same people who fought this law
tooth and nail like what it does. So I don`t think the President needs the
video to win an Emmy. He`s already won the real fight.

Joining me now, MSNBC`s Krystal ball and MIT economist Jonathan Gruber who
helped design the affordable care act.

Thank you both for being here.

KRYSTAL BALL, MSNBC HOST, THE CYCLE: Thanks for having us, Rev.

JONATHAN GRUBER, MIT ECONOMIST; Good to be here, Al.

SHARPTON: Krystal, let me go to you first. Seventy four percent of
Republicans who got coverage under the law like it. How soon until
Republicans in Washington with try to start taking credit for it?

BALL: I love that question. That`s a great thought. I hope it happens
sooner rather than later, actually. It`s a lot better than them constantly
trying to repeal it and undermine it rather than embracing it and moving
forward and making it the best possible law.

There is great news that came out of this study. There is the fact that
people are really satisfied with the coverage that they got as you pointed
out. There is the fact that a lot of people got coverage. There is the
fact that the number of uninsured is, of course, dropping off a cliff.

One thing that`s really sad to see, though, is the fact that in states that
haven`t gone forward with the Medicaid expansion, there is, of course, a
much lower participation rate. There are many fewer people who have gained
insurance. The uninsured rate has not dropped to the extent that we have
seen in other states. So, it`s really sad to see that because of politics,
some of the red state governors, red state legislators have decided that
they want to continue to resist rather than taking the help from the
federal government to do something really good for their population.

SHARPTON: You know, Jonathan, a new report from the commonwealth fund
shows that in states that expanded Medicaid, the uninsured rate among low
income Americans dropped from 28 percent to 17 percent, 11-point drop. But
in states that refused to expand Medicaid, the uninsured rate only fell two
points. I mean, what effect is this going to have, Jonathan?

GRUBER: I mean, Al, I think you have to remember that the overall news is
great here. I think it`s striking that FOX News doesn`t seem to want me on
anymore. They were happy to have me on when the law wasn`t going well.
Now, the law is going well, they suddenly don`t want to cover it.

SHARPTON: Really?

GRUBER: Survey after survey is showing a huge drop in the number of
uninsured as we predicted. However, beneath that good news is that
terrible piece of bad news which is the states which continue to commit
political malpractice by not expanding Medicaid for the core citizens.

Despite the fact that the government will pay for it, we cannot hit this
topic enough, we cannot call off these governors enough, they are punishing
their citizens, not just the core citizens who are left uninsured. They
are punishing all citizens by turning down billions of dollars of federal
stimulus that could come into their state.

SHARPTON: You know, I want to just go the next step on that with you,
Jonathan, because there is a real human cost to this. Just look at this
Tennessee couple. The wife has epilepsy and they earn too much to qualify
for Medicaid because of the husband`s retirement income. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have been at points in times where a good day was 10
to 15 grand mal seizures. I have seen her go through brain surgery. We
have been through a lot. On December 26 after 33 years of marriage, we
separated.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: The (INAUDIBLE) say they make too little to
qualify for the affordable care act. Both of them would have qualified for
ten care while still living together if Tennessee had expanded its Medicaid
program.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In order to keep my wife alive, I can`t live with her.
Unless the governor expands Medicaid, I will never be able to live with
her.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Jonathan, now remember, this is Tennessee where the governor has
refused to sign on to expand Medicaid. I was in Memphis yesterday. And I
fear that these are not the only couple that are going through this in
various states around the country where governors won`t expand Medicaid.

GRUBER: Al, you know, opponents to this law point to examples of somebody
had to pay another hundred dollars or someone had to buy insurance they
didn`t want. These are the stories that matter, Al. These are the
people`s lives that are changing.

In Massachusetts, when we expanded our health care coverage, we saved over
300 lives a year. If the states that aren`t expanding Medicaid would
expand them, that would be $6,000 people a year who would stay alive who
these governors and legislatures are dooming to die by not expanding their
programs. It is an enormous tragedy. And we need to get Americans to
focus on the cost of inaction. That this is not just a political football.
These are people`s lives at stake. And it`s just tragic that we can`t get
the public to understand that.

BALL: Yes.

SHARPTON: This is what we need to focus on, Krystal, that this is not a
political football. It`s people`s lives at stake as Jonathan said. This
is not Democrat or Republican. This is life and death for some.

BALL: It is literally life and death. And increasingly, we are going to
see more and more clear examples of people whose lives could have been
saved if their governors had just decided to do what`s right for their
state and for their citizens rather than what they perceived to be good for
their political career.

It really is shockingly unbelievable that there is anyone who would fail to
go forward with the Medicaid expansion. And also, Jonathan pointed out the
fact that this money would be a huge fiscal stimulus in the states that
they would go forward with it and create good, well paying jobs.

It also is fiscally irresponsible not to go forward with Medicaid expansion
because it would actually save money over the long term. So as all these
people who claim to be fiscal conservatives, they are actually costing
their state money and lives by not going forward with it.

SHARPTON: That was the point I was going to raise. These are the fiscal
conservatives, right?

Krystal Ball and Jonathan Gruber, I`m going to have to leave it there. But
believe me, we are going to stay on this issue.

Thank you both for your time tonight. Have a great weekend.

BALL: Thank you, Rev. You, too.

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

Coming up, turning tragedy into activism. One year after the Zimmerman
verdict, the fight against the stand your ground law.

And Mitch McConnell three years ago, meet Mitch McConnell today. We`re
breaking out the flip-flops in tonight`s "Got You."

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: We`re back with another classic flip-flop from switch Mitch
McConnell. As the Republican leader in the Senate, McConnell was a top
cheerleader for Paul Ryan`s extreme budget that gutted the safety net and
ended Medicare as we know it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MINORITY LEADER: Congressman Ryan`s plan
would put us on a path to reducing the national debt.

I would like to applaud Congressman Ryan.

I voted for the Ryan budget this week.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: He voted for it. He applauded it. He loved it. But now it`s a
different story. His democratic opponent is running ads slamming him for
it and his campaign is not taking it well.

They released a statement saying quote "there is no way to speculate if
McConnell would have voted for final passage without having debated
amendments."

Speculate? We don`t need to speculate. He said it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCCONNELL: I voted for the Ryan budget this week.

I voted for the Ryan budget this week.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Well, well, I guess you never know which Mitch you`re going to
get. Did the senator think we wouldn`t notice how he`s twisting himself up
like a pretzel?

Nice try, but we got you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: State of Florida versus George Zimmerman, verdict.
We, the jury, find George Zimmerman not guilty. So say we all.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: The verdict that stunned the country. Announcing one year ago
this weekend. The death of Trayvon Martin made stand your ground laws part
of the national debate. After the trial, rallies against the law were
withheld across the country everywhere. And celebrities like Jay-Z and
Beyonce came out to lend supports as we fought to fix this injustice.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: There should not be a law that means that if you think you are
under threat you have the right to kill somebody. That law hurts blacks,
whites, Latinos, Asians. This is not just a black thing. This is a human
thing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: Since then, prior to GOP Governor Rick Scott signed a law
actually expanding the stand your ground law and Republican lawmakers voted
down attempts to repeal it were voted down. Now it`s time to redouble our
efforts. This law is injustice. We are seeing it invoked in case after
case after case.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOYCE CARRANZA, VICTIM`S SISTER: He`s going to get away with murder. He`s
going to get away with executing my little brother.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Joyce Carranza is distraught. A court of appeals
decided the man who killed her brother should be immune to prosecution
under the Florida`s stand your ground law.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The investigator says, that`s when the homeowner walked
out and shot the burglar.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good for him. Wonderful. I wish more people would do
it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Investigators say the homeowner was within his right to
stand his ground.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now one Broward youngster who charged with battery has
convinced an appeal in court he should have the right to say he was
standing your ground.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One word is trying to use the stand your ground law as
defense.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Families of the victims say all who were shot were
unarmed.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He came back and shot Gary ended up shooting him 17
times. That`s not standing your -- that`s a cold-hearted murder.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SHAPTON: Each of those news clips is from Florida in the last year, after
the Zimmerman verdict. Too often the law is being used and is being use to
justify murder. It`s time for a change.

Joining me now is Florida State Representative Perry Thurston. He led that
attempt to repeal the stand your ground law in March. And Lisa Bloom,
legal analyst for avvo.com. Her latest book is "Suspicion Nation."

Thank you both for being here.

LISA BLOOM, LEGAL ANALYST, AVVO.COM: Thank you.

REP. PERRY THURSTON (D), FLORIDA: Thank you for having us.

SHAPTON: Representative, one year after the Zimmerman verdict, stand your
ground laws are now known. That`s a big change from before.

THURSTON: It`s a big change, reverend. But we are saddened in Florida
that a year later after a young man has been needlessly gunned down, we
have created a culture with this verdict that encourages shoot first and
ask questions later mentality. We have a culture here that encourages
individuals where it says the biggest gun would win. And that`s
unfortunate, and it`s unfortunate that we have situation where is no matter
if you are in a parking lot, a movie theater, wherever you are, parents are
concerned about the protection of their children.

SHAPTON: You know, Lisa. That`s why I got involved with Trayvon Martin.
I never had heard of the case when the attorney and the parents called me.
Most Americans never had heard of it until we begun rallying around this.

And now we`ve learned this week that Curtis Reeves, a retired police
captain who shot and killed a man who threw popcorn him at a movie theater,
may try to use stand your ground next year.

Here`s how Reeves justified the shooting to police.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OFFICER: So what made you shoot him?

CURTIS REEVES, SUSPECT: Well, I guess -- he scared the hell out of me. I
thought the guy was fixing to beat the [ bleep ] out of me. I don`t know
how else to say that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: He was scared of what turned out to be popcorn. This is how
they are using stand your ground, Lisa.

BLOOM: We can either value human life or we can have stand your ground
laws. But we can`t do both at the same time because they are completely
inconsistent.

You`re absolutely right, reverend and I salute the State Representative,
Mr. Thurston as well for trying to do something about this horrific
problem. You know, until 2005 we didn`t have stand your ground laws. For
over 200 years in America we were perfectly content to have regular, old-
fashioned self-defense law which required people to get out of the
situation if they could without committing violence.

Now we have stand your ground in half the states. There`s no question that
it increases violence and there is no question there is a huge racial
imbalance in the way it`s administered. Whites who kill blacks in stand
your ground cases are 356 percent more likely to be exonerated than it`s
the other way around.

SHAPTON: Three hundred fifty six percent more likely, wow.

BLOOM: Yes.

SHAPTON: Let me go back to you Representative Thurston. Now, there are 26
states - she said, none before 2005, there are 26 states with some form of
stand your ground laws. But you are there in ground zero where it really
started where we made it a national issue and the Democratic candidate for
governor, Charlie Crist, he says, if he beats Rick Scott in the election
he`ll call a for a review of the law.

Does the political will exist in Florida to fix some of the worst abuses of
stand your ground in your opinion, representative?

THURSTON: Reverend Shapton, I would agree with you. I`m glad to see the
potential governor, Governor Crist takes the stand. But I want to tell
you, across the state there are so many others have taken the position.
Where you have the proliferation of individuals who are utilizing the law
at the same time you have individuals who are affected by it. They are
coming out by the drones saying enough is enough.

That`s why we introduced, called for a vote on the floor of the House
against stand your ground and instituted a petition at
thurstonforflorida.com where thousands and thousands of Floridians have
already signed up. Along with Governor Crist you have a number of people
across the state who have recognized, who recognized that this is a
problem. And we encourage more of your listeners to come on board and
let`s join this petition.

Let`s do something about this and make Florida the great state we know it
could be. These other states across the nation should also be standing up,
voicing an opinion against this bad law.

SHAPTON: All over the country.

Lisa, you are more than most have really delved into the legal side of the
cases. And dealing with how the prosecutors in some of them have not done
their best in trying to deal with this or the defense attorneys in trying
to defend against it.

BLOOM: Right. So we know - you know it`s the one-year anniversary of the
George Zimmerman acquittal. We know the prosecutors did an abysmal job,
the first half of my book walked everyone through how bad it was the. Part
of it was because of stand your ground.

We know George Zimmerman was with free for 45 days while the country was in
an uproar because of stand your ground laws. We know that he came in the
Zimmerman case in closing arguments, that the jurors talked about stand
your ground. That after the verdict they talked about stand your ground
and more generally, jurors and people in the public think that stand your
ground means that you can take your are gun out and shoot when you feel
threatened. That`s actually not the law but it creates a culture of
escalating violence of escalating of violence. And the law should
encourage de-escalation of violence.

SHAPTON: In our country, we must. I will never get at least one or maybe
two of the jurors said he got away with murder. A year ago.

State Representative Perry Thurston and Lisa bloom, legal analyst for
avvo.com. Thank you both for your time tonight.

BLOOM: Thank you, rev.

THURSTON: Thank you, Reverend Shapton.

SHAPTON: Coming up, a friend of the hot car dad speaks out on his
fascination with women. And why he`s calling the father a, quote,
"monster."

Plus, major news in the sports world. Lebron James is going home. But
he`ll have company.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHAPTON: Was it an accident or was it murder? Why did a 22-month-old die
in a sweltering hot car?

Right now investigators are closely looking into the father`s secret online
activity. The pickup cites are Ross Harris trolled for women on. Those
photos come from a site where he met at least one of the six women he was
sexting with, police say. He was sending naked pictures of his private
parts to a girl as his son`s dying in t he car.

Today, a former close friend spoke out to NBC news revealing Ross`s
fixation on other women, even while he was married saying Ross would are
visit him at work and talk about the women there.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BEN MCREA, ROSS HARRIS`S FRIEND: Most of the cashiers there were younger
females. He would tell me later on, oh, that one`s so fine and that one`s
so fine. Then I noticed he was adding them as friends on Facebook. And
I`m like, you are not really trying to talk to these girls, are you? He`d
say, she`s so fine. Like, I know she`s pretty, but -- she`s in 10th grade.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: Prosecutors say Harris lived a double life, a double life that
shocks his friend.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCREA: Oh, Lord. When I saw that scout.com profile, "Message me, I`m
harmless." This isn`t the same guy. This isn`t the Ross Harris we knew.
What happened? It blows my mind that the Ross Harris I knew is capable of
doing any of the things I have heard. I mean, it seems like a monster.
This don`t seem like my friend. It seems like a monster.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: A former friend calling this man a monster. Harris is charged
with murder and has pleaded not guilty.

Joining me now, our Criminal Defense Attorneys Eric Guster and Carmen St.
George. Thank you both for being here tonight.

ERIC GUSTER, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Thank you for having us

CARMEN ST. GEORGE, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Thank you.

SHAPTON: Eric Ross`s former friend talked about his obsession with women.
How might the prosecutors use this information?

GUSTER: Well, they are going to use this to show he`s not honest. He is
not being honest about his life and the life he was living. One of the
problems the prosecution will have is that he did not make a statement.
They are going to show his statement might be an admission to the crime.
They will try to prove he`s a liar -- he lied about different incidents.
And this would show his propensity for lying.

SHAPTON: Now, Ross`s friend also told NBC news, Carmen, that he was
surprised that the police were able to find any information on his
computer.

Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MCREA: When it comes to computers, Ross Harris is no dummy. I mean, even
in high school, the boy could build a computer. To be so clumsy not to
cover something up, to not know that would be the first thing to come out
is your internet search history. He knows how law enforcement works. He
knows how computers work.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHAPTON: He knows how computers work. So what does this say about the
search he made looking for sites that talked about how animals die in hot
cars?

ST. GEORGE: The internet information is what the police and prosecution
should use as concrete proof in this case. It`s not a guessing game.
Sometimes we look at people`s subjective reaction. We want to analyze how
did they respond, how was he at the scene when he saw his son dying.
Everybody does that. We are human. But some people respond differently.
Some are stoic, some cry. Scott Peterson didn`t shed a tear.

Now you take it to the concrete evidence. You have computer searches. But
even if he`s a wizard in computers, he`s not thinking. He`s got a double
life he`s leading. This search points to various different areas once a
search engine is hit. Within your computer you would have to go
individually and delete every area to clear that evidence and that proof.
That`s what the prosecution will hold onto.

SHAPTON: Eric, put on your defense attorney hat. You`ve got a defendant
charged with murder. You have him with this history now in terms of his
footprint in using his computer to search where animals died.

GUSTER: Yes, sir.

SHAPTON: Exactly the way his son died. And you have the emotions of a 22-
month-old baby that died. How do you approach this?

GUSTER: Well, the facts are, there one in ten people left their child in
the car by mistake. And men, according to one study I just read, are three
times as likely to leave their children in the car and forget about their
children being in the car. And people don`t want to think that a man would
actually be this evil to do this. And the prosecution may have problems
proving their case because like we said earlier, he didn`t admit to killing
his son with malice.

SHAPTON: But, but, but Carmen, his friends say he was very routine in this
interview. The friend says heaven went to the restaurant, ate the same
thing every day, ordered the same for the kid. He`d walk in the
restaurant, they would start fixing it. They knew. Somebody this routine.
Somebody this methodical, predictable forgot his son all of those hours and
just happened to have searched those sites? How do you defend that?

ST. GEORGE: Well, you would have to say, if I was defending him, I would
say that the proof on the internet about Googling being child-free or
prison life, that it had other reasons why they were doing it. Perhaps the
notes in his state they were looking for making sure kids are protected
from this particular incident so he wanted to make sure what do I have to
do so I don`t put myself in that circumstances. What are the clues I have
to look for so I know if this ever happened --

SHAPTON: I get it, Eric. You looked at the site to make sure you defend
yourself and a week later you forgot your kid in the car. You were so busy
making sure it didn`t happen that you turned around a few days later and
did it.

GUSTER: First of all, I think he`s guilty. But the prosecution has the
burden of proof to prove it, reverend Al. I`m not sure even with the facts
we have read, the sexting, the computer searches, I`m not sure they have
enough of a case to get 12 jurors to vote guilty in this. I just don`t see
it.

ST. GEORGE: He`s Googling child-free, how to survive prison? Now I`m
putting on the prosecution hat. There is no way this man looked past the
baby in his car nor is there a way he got into that vehicle with a stench
in it and drove to a parking lot where people would see him do his act of
crying over this child.

SHAPTON: All right. We are going to see where it goes. We are going to
stay on this one because this one struck a nerve with me, 22-month-old
baby.

Eric Guster and Carmen St. George, thank you both for time tonight. Have a
great weekend.

ST. GEORGE: Thank you.

SHAPTON: We`ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHAPTON: We are back with a pause from the political battles of the day.
A time to rest, relax and recharge.

That`s right. It`s time for the "Politics Nation" summer break.

At number three, we go to Germany where world cup fever spread to the
elephants. Look at this power kick. He`s scored in the Argentina goal
that means he`s predicted Germany to win the cup. Brazil could have used
this fellow the other day. He also predicted an epic overreach for speaker
Boehner`s lawsuit.

We go to Mexico for number two. All rise because here comes the crocodile
bride. Yes, doesn`t she look beautiful? Hey, croc, who are you wearing?
The Myanman married the crocodile in a symbolic ceremony, part of the local
tradition. The happy couple danced the night away. Look at those sweet
moves. Rick Santura was protesting outside.

And at number one, we stay with the dancing theme in Michigan where they
honored the history of Native Americans at the Cherry Festival. Hundreds
gathered to boogie down. They cut it up and had a great time. But the
dogs stole the show. Awards were given out to the best dressed dog, the
ugliest and my personal favorite, the owner-pet look-alike. Other pets
were also celebrated. No word on if that this horse suit met President
Obama this week qualified for the contest.

That`s today`s summer break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHAPTON: It`s the story everyone -- and I mean everyone -- is talking
about. Lebron James is going home to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The story broke this afternoon, and nearly broke the internet. James
revealed the decision on the Sports Illustrated Web site. The White House
even responded with the press secretary saying the president is a big fan
of Lebron and praised Lebron`s values. But James isn`t the only one going
to Cleveland. Earlier this week, RNC Chair Reince Priebus revealed the
2016 Republican national convention will be in Cleveland. So it got us
thinking. How is Lebron different from the RNC?

Number five, Lebron is best known for getting fans out of their chairs.
The RNC is best known for celebrities talking to empty chairs.

Number four, Lebron`s trademark is throwing chalk in the air. The RNC
tries to throw Americans off health care.

Number three, Lebron`s nation`s capital name is King James. The RNC is
obsessed with calling the president king Obama.

Number two, Lebron is leaving Florida to go home. The RNC is going to
Florida to block the vote and the number one difference, Lebron wins
national championships, and the RNC loses national elections.

Congratulations to Lebron on his decision. He is a great role model for
kids and a great ambassador for the city. We wish him and the city luck as
he returns home.

Thanks for watching. I`m Al Shapton. Have a great weekend.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
BE UPDATED.
END

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