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PoliticsNation, Monday, July 14th, 2014

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July 14, 2014

Guest: Joan Walsh, Faith Jenkins, Dana Milbank, Ken Padowitz

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

Tonight`s lead, the next GOP shutdown. House Republicans forced a
government shutdown less than a year ago. But they have already forgotten
how badly it backfired. Because right now they are playing another game of
brinksmanship. Refusing a deal to finance the highway fund which pays for
projects to keep roads and bridges safe.

The White House says if Congress doesn`t act by August 1st, they will have
to cut highway and infrastructure spending by 28 percent. That would put
112,000 infrastructure projects in jeopardy and 700,000 jobs at risk.

Today, former vice President Dick Cheney brushed the whole crisis aside
saying we only really need to worry about the military.


whole trend with respect to the United States military. That ought to be
our top priority for spending -- not food stamps, highways or anything
else. Your number one job as President is to defend and support the
constitution of the United States. He`s the commander in chief and he`s
absolutely devastating the United States military today.


SHARPTON: Forget about keeping the bridges and highways safe. Who cares
as long as we can pay for more wars?

The truth is the Republicans could derail our economic recovery. One
economist told the "Washington Post," quote, :2014 has the potential to be
a breakout year for the U.S. labor market. To get there though we need a
quick and painless solution to the shortfall in the highway trust fund."

Things can be great if Republicans don`t mess it up. And is that really
something we should count on?


OBAMA: The best thing you can say about this Congress, the Republicans in
Congress and particularly the House of Representatives. The best thing you
can say this year is so far they have not shut down the government or
threatened to have America Welch on our obligations and ruin our credit
rating. That`s the best you can say. But of course it`s only July so who
knows what they may cook up in the next few months?


SHARPTON: The best you can say for them is they haven`t caused a shutdown
this year. And we might not even be able to say that for much longer.

Joining me now, Jared Bernstein and Krystal Ball. Thank you both for being

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


SHARPTON: Jared, 700,000 jobs at risk if Congress doesn`t do anything on
the highway trust fund? I mean, how dangerous is it for the economy?

BERNSTEIN: It is as dangerous are as anything I can think of for the
economy. I mean, we`re talking about a job market that`s really has gained
some momentum in recent months.

I was talking about it with Krystal and her colleagues the day the last job
report came out. Over the last three months we are generating 270,000 jobs
a month on average. If you go back a year ago, that number is 200,000.
Now, why was 2013 so much weaker than this year so far in the economy? A
lot of it has to do with precisely this kind of fiscal drag. That`s when
fiscal policy pushes the wrong way, it creates headwinds against economic
growth instead of tail winds we need. You teed it up just right the
introduction. If Congress isn`t going to help the economy, at least don`t
hurt it.

SHARPTON: Now, you know, Krystal, the White House is starting to push this
week, in fact, to make a deal on the highway trust fund. In fact, the
President made the case fairly at this month too. Listen to this.


OBAMA: It`s not crazy. It`s not socialism. It`s not the imperial
presidency. No laws are broken. We are just building roads and bridges
like we have been doing for the last -- I don`t know -- 50, 100 years. BUT
So far House Republicans have refused to act on this idea. I haven`t heard
a good reason why they haven`t acted. It is not like they have been busy
with other stuff. No, seriously.


SHARPTON: I mean, Krystal, what is the Republican argument? I mean, they
are so busy suing the President that they can`t find time to do this?

BALL: That`s right. And what`s interesting here is the Republican party
on this issue, as on many issues is deeply divided, right? You have the
wing that wants to sue the President and the wing that wants to impeach the

Here you have a wing that wants to sort of kick the can down the road, do
some sort of accounting gimmicks to replenish the highway trust fund for
now. And then you have the wing that wants top just essentially get rid of
the highway trust fund and give everything back to the states and not have
the federal government involved at all, which is an extreme position.

SHARPTON: Very extreme.

BALL: And what the President is pointing out is things that used to be
business as usual, right? Raising the debt limit, keeping the government
from shutting down, passing is basic bills and funding we need to keep the
country going, those things are no longer business as usual. That`s how
far out the Republican party has gone.

SHARPTON: You know, Jared, there is something interesting to note. The
group heritage action which pushed the government shutdown is also bashing
plans to pay for the highway trust fund.

On their Web site it says, quote, "the highway trust fund has been
completed and lawmakers are now seeking $10 billion to bail it out to
continue transportation spend in spending at current unsustainable levels."

Now, they are calling infrastructure spending a bailout? I mean, will
anyone buy this? A bailout?

BERNSTEIN: The exchange you had with Krystal was interesting. Because
this idea that you would devolve highways down to the state level, it`s
called the interstate highway system.

BALL: Thank you.

BERNSTEIN: We have all been there. We drive on it.

SHARPTON: Unless you tell everybody to stay in their particular state, you
can`t go anywhere.

BERNSTEIN: OK. So, you know, there`s a solution.

So I think the thing folks need to remember is that trust fund is mainly
supported by a gasoline tax, a federal gasoline tax, 18.4 cents a gallon
that hasn`t been adjusted for 21 years. Now, you have inflation over those
periods. You got a fleet that is getting lower mileage. Does anybody in
their right mind believe that we can maintain a world class interstate
highway system on a 21-year-old federal gas tax? I don`t think so.

SHARPTON: You know, and Krystal, and the uncertainty of this highway trust
fund is affecting projects all over the country. Look at this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Hot lanes won`t be extended. Improvements
to ramps along 285 will have to wait. The state`s entire transportation
wish list will be on hold.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That`s what people go through every day here. The
narrow lanes. The danger of it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Secretary FOX called his experience calling
the bridge the worst he`s ever seen. But turning it from this in to this
is going to take some work in Washington.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Next summer, O-dot plans to smooth things out by
repaving this stretch of freeway. But that project and many others could
be put on hold. The problem, there are no more federal funds to help pay
for next year`s road projects.


SHARPTON: I mean, Krystal, these are real problems. This has nothing to
do with bailouts, the handouts. We are talking about the roads and bridges
that we drive our children across that people need repaired.

BALL: That`s right.

SHARPTON: We are talking about necessity here.

BALL: We are talking about necessity. We are also talking about, you
know, roads businesses need to get their goods to market, to keep us and to
help us rebuild and sustain our status as a world class economy.

The really sad thing here is the best case scenario that it looks like
we`ll get out of this Congress is a short term deal. which means states
can`t plan. They can`t do the sort of long-range project, the rebuilding
of the bridge that needs to be done. They can`t do that when they can`t
count on the next Congress to restore funding again, as Jared is alluding
to. We really need to change the funding mechanism or we need to up the
gas tax. And there is just absolutely no way that Republicans are going to
stomach any sort of actual real solution to this problem. The best we can
with hope for is kicking the can down the road.

SHARPTON: And to keep kicking the can down the road, you`re kicking
Americans` opportunity, not only for safety and not only for maintaining
jobs. But, Jared, you`re really messing with the economy.

BERNSTEIN: Well, yes. And that road has a lot of potholes in it. So, you
know, you`re going to get that can stuck.

BALL: It`s a bridge to nowhere, Jared.

BERNSTEIN: Look, the investment in infrastructure of the type that you and
Krystal are talking about is actually as low as it`s been as a share of
GDP. And to me, this is what happens when you have a dysfunctional
Congress. That is, we can tell all kinds of intriguing political stories
about one side fighting with the other. But really, the end result here in
economic terms, and in foreign policy we have another discussion, the end
result in economic terms is a considerably weaker economy. Precisely in
the spirit of what Krystal was saying, a less productive. An economy where
GDP growth is demonstrably slower because we are disinvesting in our
political goods. It is political malpractice, Rev.

SHARPTON: Well, I`m going to have to leave it there. Jared Bernstein and
Krystal Ball, thank you both for your time tonight.

BALL: Thanks, Rev.

BERNSTEIN: Thank you.

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

Coming up, attorney general Eric Holder has a response to all of Sarah
Palin`s impeachment talk. And I think you will like it. Plus, are Rick
Perry revealed why Republicans aren`t serious about fixing the border
crisis. We`ll talk about that with my new colleague, MSNBC`s colleague of
mine Jose Diaz-Balart. And that`s a must see interview today that he also

The FBI links police officers to the Ku Klux Klan. It`s an unbelievable
story and it`s ahead. Stay with us.


SHARPTON: Big show ahead tonight. We have heard all kinds of anti-
immigrant rhetoric from are the right. But tonight, a human face on the
border crisis. Why this shouldn`t be the Republicans` latest political

And attorney general Eric Holder takes on the GOP`s impeachment circus.
That`s coming up.

But first, 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


SHARPTON: We are facing a major humanitarian crisis at the border. We
learned late this afternoon the department of homeland security is starting
to send undocumented migrants back to their home countries.

Today, about 40 adults with children were flown back to Honduras. This is
being described by an official as, quote, "just the initial wave."
President Obama has asked Congress for $3.7 billion to address the
situation. But Republicans are dragging their feet, playing politics with
the crisis.

Texas Governor Rick Perry has been at the forefront. He`s pounding his
chest and demanding the National Guard be sent to the border. But he
received unexpected pushback on that plan yesterday.


BRIT HUME, FOX NEW SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: National guardsmen and women.
They are not under the law allowed to apprehend any of the children
crossing, are they?

GOV. RICK PERRY (R), TEXAS: Well, the issue is with being able to send
that message. Because it`s the visual of it that I think is most


SHARPTON: The visual is the most important thing? What about the lives of
these children? What about finding a solution. Isn`t that the most
important thing?

Earlier today, my new MSNBC colleague Jose Diaz-Balart had an emotional
interview with this undocumented immigrant from Honduras. She went by the
name Maria because she`s a minor and it puts a face to the crisis happening
right now.


JOSE DIAZ-BALART, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: What would you say to people who
say you should be sent back, no ifs, ands or buts? (SPEAKING SPANISH )
What would you tell them?


DIAZ-BALART: In my case, it`s horrible. Because I went through a lot. To
deport me would be too fatal. I don`t deserve this. I don`t deserve it
because I have suffered so much. I have suffered so much need and so many
problems along the way. The only thing I would beg is please give me a
chance to stay here. So I can fulfill I my dreams. So I can take care of
my family.


SHARPTON: That`s what this issue is about, not visuals or optics. It`s
about real lives. There is no easy answer here. No simple solution. But
politicians on both sides of the aisle have to work together on this
crisis. That`s one visual. Then working together would be a welcome

Joining me now is new MSNBC host Jose Diaz-Balart.

Jose, first of all, congratulations on your new show.

DIAZ-BALART: Thank you, Reverend. It`s a pleasure to be here. And what a
privilege to have the opportunity to have a show on MSNBC.

SHARPTON: Well, you know, everyone is talking about the show. Everyone is
talking about this emotional interview today. I mean, what would you say
to politicians who want to play politics with this crisis?

DIAZ-BALART: Reverend, I would say that it`s very easy to be in your
offices in D.C. or maybe some different state across the country and your
office protected and comfortable in many, many ways and to discuss this
issue with a certain level of detachment.

And I think it`s important and not taking an opinion, I think it is
important to let the voices be heard.

And Reverend, Maria is just one of the many voices and each one of the
statistics that we read, you know, this amount of hundred kids crossed the
border today. This many tens of thousands of kids have crossed the border
by themselves since October, every one of those numbers is a person, it is
a human being with the life story that many times are extremely tragic.

And I think it`s important to put into the national conversation, those
voices of people who are risking their lives to be here. Why are they
leaving their country? Nobody wants to leave their country. They are not
coming here to go to Disney World. They are coming because they for their

SHARPTON: No. And that brings me right to E.J. Dionne`s piece in the
"Washington Post" today. He writes in his op-ed, quote, "instead of
dealing with this problem in a thoughtful way reflecting shared
responsibility across party lines, President Obama`s critics quickly turned
to the business of seeking political gain."

I mean, for example, Jose, Governor Perry talked about the visual of the
National Guard being important. Isn`t seeking political gain exactly what
Republicans are trying to do here when they are talking about the visual
and not really dealing with a solution to the problem?

DIAZ-BALART: You know, Rev., the if anybody thinks -- take the example of
Maria, a 17-year-old young lady who lives in Honduras. And her brother was
shot in front of her by gang member who later, years later, came back to
her house and said, you know what, your time is coming soon. So you are
going to become property of ours shortly or if you can say no, you will

Do you think that for Maria who decided to go leave her little village and
go through Mexico where she was subjected to some of the most horrific
things a human being could imagine, that could happen to another human

Do you think that seeing more or less guards on the border in the United
States is going to deter her? Do you think that message after these people
have decided to leave everything they know behind for fearing their lives
are going to be worried about the optics and political message?

SHARPTON: You know, the language of some on the right that they use to
talk about the kids is astounding really. Listen to this.


REP. LOUIE GOHMERT (R), TEXAS: Schools cannot handle this influx. We
don`t even know what all diseases they have.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Along with the kids comes some sickness.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are thinking these are diseases we have eradicated
in our country and our population isn`t ready for this. And so, for this
to break out and be an epidemic or pandemic, as you mentioned earlier,
would be unbelievable.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The government spreads illegal immigrants across the
country and the diseases spread across the country.


SHARPTON: I mean, diseases, Jose. These are kids. How can these people
govern? How can these people solve the problem when they are talking about
kids like this?

DIAZ-BALART: Yes. And Reverend, I didn`t take down all the names of the
people you put up there. I`m wondering how many of them are doctors, and
how many of them are disease specialists. And I wonder how many of them
have spoken to anybody who is dealing with this humanitarian crisis.

And you know what? This is a Judeo-Christian-based nation. What those
principles would mean for someone if they are able to say something like
that with not one iota of information.

SHARPTON: Well, I`m going to have to leave it there. But thank you so
much, Jose Diaz-Balart. Thank you for your time tonight.

And be sure to watch Jose Diaz-Balart weekday at 10:00 a.m. eastern right
here on MSNBC.

Coming up, attorney general Eric Holder has something to say about Sarah
Palin`s impeachment talk.

And the Florida police department with a Ku Klux Klan problem. Yes, you
heard, that`s right. Please stay with us.


SHARPTON: Sarah Palin has become the ring leader of the GOP`s impeachment
circus. She`s pulling the party right off a cliff.

But tonight, the attorney general is hitting back. You will want to see
this, next.



PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: You hear some of them. They`re
like, sue him! Impeach him!

(Crowd): Yes!

OBAMA: Really?


Really? For what?


SHARPTON: President Obama talking about the impeachment lawsuit circus we
are seeing in the GOP. In just two days, House Republicans will hold the
first public debate on Speaker Boehner`s lawsuit. Between that and
impeachment, they don`t have time to talk about anything else.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We do believe that the President is not enforcing the
law. And that`s why the speaker and many of us in the Congress are getting
ready to take legal action.

determination about whether it is impeachable or not.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: I wanted Obama to fail at what he has
done. I wanted him to fail at growing government.

SARAH PALIN, FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR: The one tool they have are articles
of impeachment. Let`s get going on that. You don`t bring a lawsuit to a
gunfight. There`s no place for lawyers on the front lines.


SHARPTON: So Sarah Palin is now the GOP`s expert on constitutional law.
Attorney General Eric Holder had some thoughts on that this weekend.


ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: She wasn`t a particularly good vice
presidential candidate. She`s an even worse judge of who ought to be
impeached and why.


SHARPTON: He`s right. It`s ridiculous. It feels like a circus, a
carnival side show. And you know what? It is. So tonight, we are
unveiling the official POLITICS NATION Obama derangement scale. Your guide
to measuring just how kooky the right wingers have become. Let`s start
with a simple question. How many Republicans think President Obama has
exceeded his constitutional authority? Wow! The answer is 89 percent.
According to a new poll out just today, that`s pretty close to peak
derangement. Look out.

Let`s try another question. How many Republicans think impeachment could
be justified? Sixty eight percent. That`s not a joke. Two-thirds of
republican voters are jumping into the impeachment clown car. Do you know
what? Maybe it`s time GOP leaders stopped catering to the worst impulses
from their base and started working on things that actually matter for all
American people.

Joining me now are Joan Walsh and Dana Milbank. Thank you both for being



SHARPTON: Dana, the Attorney General hit back at Sarah Palin pretty hard.
Do Democrats know all this impeachment lawsuit talk is a big loser for the

MILBANK: I think they do. And I mean, that`s why you see a lot of the
Republicans like Boehner trying to push back against it. And this lawsuit
was with basically a way to try to inoculate them from the political damage
that would come with impeachment. But the inoculation seems to have been
some sort of a live virus. And it only seems to have fired up more
impeachment craziness. That`s the danger here in trying to head off the
craziness of the base they have actually seemed to have encouraged.

SHARPTON: You know, Joan Walsh, you wrote in an article about Speaker
Boehner`s lawsuit. He`s throwing table scraps while the wing nuts want red
meat. Boehner` stunt is impeachment light, I like that term, or
impeachment for cowards.

WALSH: Well, it is.

SHARPTON: You`re helpful to the speaker but go ahead.

WALSH: No, I don`t think he liked that. But he probably doesn`t read me.
Dana makes a really good point. All the talk of a lawsuit just supposed to
channel this angle in a protracted direction. Has actually served to gin
it up. And it kind of makes it -- it makes it a certain kind of sense to
me, Rev. Because if you think about it, once you start saying, John
Boehner says the President has indeed done something that he exceeded his
power, people who believe that he`s a tyrant and all of that.


WALSH: Start to say, well, why not impeach him? That`s actually the --
you do have the power to do that. And when John Boehner actually stands up
and says, as he said in that introductory clip, others can decide whether
this is an impeachable offense, that`s crazy. I mean, he`s abdicating that
decision to somebody else. He`s the speaker of the house. Say it is or
say it isn`t. But he won`t do either.

SHARPTON: Now, you know Politico Dana, reports that Sarah Palin`s call for
impeachment caused the real spike in fundraising but for the Democrats.
Quote, "The result was a flood of grassroots donations. The Democratic
Congressional Campaign Committee claimed it received nearly 10,000
donations in just 24 hours. The response to impeachment has been well over
six figures, DCCC Spokesman Josh Schwerin told Politico. Don`t Republicans
realizes impeachment lawsuit talk is backfiring, Dana?

MILBANK: Well, I think they do. And that`s why we had that effort by
Boehner and others to tamp it down. But it doesn`t seem to have done it.
And I think part of the reason is because you do have members of the
republican establishment, elected officials and prominent people like Sarah
Palin even though she doesn`t hold an elected position anymore, giving
voice to this. You know, you can`t blame people responding to a poll
saying, they`re for impeachment, you know, a republican voter saying, oh,
heck, I didn`t vote for the guy anyway.

Yes, sure, I`d like him out of there. We saw a similar thing when late in
the Bush presidency when a lot of the democratic voters out there wanted
him impeached. But the difference is, the office holders, the people are
supposed to be in a position of responsibility, you have now got several
members of the House. Several republican members of the Senate, candidates
elsewhere who have brought up impeachment. So, that what`s taking this to
a whole different level and giving people the sense that it`s actually a
plausible thing.

SHARPTON: You know, Joan, the Attorney General also says that some people
-- not all but he said some, race is one of the factors in their opposition
to President Obama. And you have written about this. Listen to the
Attorney General.



HOLDER: There is a certain level of vehemence it seems to be that directed
me, directed at the president. You know, people talk about taking their
country back. You know, I can`t look into people`s heart. Look into
people`s minds. But it seems to me that this President has been treated
differently than others. There is a certain racial component to this for
some people. I don`t think it is a main driver. But for some there is a
racial animus.


SHARPTON: And the right wing went nuts.

WALSH: Right.

SHARPTON: Surprise, surprise. I mean, all of the signs and the cartoons
and the kind of racial designs. None of that is racial. They never
thought about race until yesterday when Eric Holder said this really.

WALSH: Right. How dare he. No, the Attorney General was incredibly sober
and incredibly careful and really used very careful words. Did not
describe all of it or even most of it. Just some of it. And when you see
some of those signs and I`m not going to describe them, you know that yes,
some of it is racial. And, you know, a lot of constitutional scholars have
said that this standing by John Boehner, he doesn`t have any, this lawsuit,
he doesn`t have any standing to bring the lawsuit.


WALSH: And Yale`s Akhil Amar has said it reminds him of birtherism. That
there`s no -- nothing like this has ever succeeded, it`s not going to
succeed, and it is just an attempt to play to that ugliness of the base.
And I agree with it.

SHARPTON: Dana, what is the Democrats` opportunity here?

MILBANK: Well, look, it`s a difficult year for them. But this has been
essentially a gift. The overplaying of the hand by the Republican Party.
So, as you mentioned there is some fund-raising advantage here. And as
candidates go out like the republican Senate candidate in Iowa, as they get
out on board the impeachment bandwagon, well, that may give some voters
pause. So, it may at the margins helps him at the polls. And certainly
will help him with some fund-raising.

SHARPTON: So, the overreach Joan in terms of impeachment talk or even
lawsuits, couple of that with the infrastructure money they are blocking.
I mean, all of this could begin to turn around would look like a bleak year
for the Democrats.

WALSH: It could begin. I think Democrats have a lot of hard work to do.
But, you know, the highway trust fund is such a great example of something
that used to be a bipartisan concern.


WALSH: It used to be routinely renewed. And this is now something that`s
become controversial in the Republican Party. So Democrats know this. But
I think when they treat the President with such disrespect, they do
personalize the election. It helps with their base but it helps with
democratic base as well.

SHARPTON: Joan Walsh, Dana Milbank, we`re going to have to leave it there.
Thank you both for your time tonight.

MILBANK: Thanks, Reverend.

SHARPTON: A Florida man shoots and kills a father over popcorn. And a
text message. Why is he now out of jail?

And the FBI, a Florida Police Department and the Ku Klux Klan. You will
not believe this story. Stay with us.


SHARPTON: We turn now to Florida. Ground zero for the stand your ground
law where a man who shot and killed someone over some movie popcorn is out
of jail on bond. The shooting happened at this movie theater in January.
Navy veteran Chad Oulson, seen on the left, was in the theater when he got
into an argument with 71-year-old Curtis Reeves, a retired Tampa police
captain, seen on the right. It started over a text Oulson was sending to
his two-year-old daughter`s babysitter. But what happened next was

Reeves killed Oulson with a single bullet to his chest. He claims he shot
in self-defense, that Oulson hit him with something. But in surveillance
video from inside the theater, you can see what appears to be Oulson
tossing a popcorn box at Reeves. Then Reeves grabs his gun and shoots.
Reeves is charged with second degree murder and was held without bond since
January. On Friday evening he was released on $150,000 bond after an
appeals court tossed out the earlier order. Nicole Oulson`s lawyer said
the news was, quote, "difficult pill to swallow."


T.J. GRIMALDI, NICOLE OULSON`S LAWYER: This man who ripped a family apart
and tore them to pieces is now able to be home in his own bed, see his
family, see his daughter, his son, and his grandkid. And it`s just
unbelievably unfair. I believe that he is an absolute danger to society.
There is absolutely no question. He went from someone throwing popcorn in
his face to murdering someone. What`s to say that can`t happen again?


SHARPTON: The big question tonight, should Curtis Reeves be held in jail?

Joining me now is criminal Defense Attorney Kim Padowitz and former
prosecutor and MSNBC legal analyst Faith Jenkins. Thank you both for being



SHARPTON: Ken, why was Reeves released?

PADOWITZ: Well, Reverend, in this country we are presumed innocent unless
proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. And the Florida constitution
actually echoes this in article one, section 14 which this says basically
there is a presumption of pretrial release. And so, the initially the bond
hearing where there was a lot of evidence presented that this man had no
prior record, was not a flight risk and was not a threat to society, the
judge basically thought that once the state had met its burden of proof,
that proof is evident presumption great, that the court basically felt its
hands were tied and could not allow the defendant out and could not allow
him to post bond.

The appellate court on appeal said, no, no, judge, you do have discretion,
and by the way there was a lot of evidence to release him on bond. So
basically would happen is that the judge made a decision using his
discretion to release him on bond now knowing that the initial bond
hearing, there was a lot of evidence that suggested he should be released.

SHARPTON: Now, Faith, in their ruling the appeals court said that it had
no reason to deny Mr. Reeves` bond. Quote, "He presented several character
witnesses whose testimony went largely unchallenged by the state. He is an
older defendant with no prior record. The court also said Mr. Reeves,
quote, had a long and distinguished career as a police officer."

JENKINS: Right. And the appeals court wanted the trial court judge to
reconsider all of those things and reconsider his initial ruling of not
granting him bond. The appeals court said he`s essentially not a flight
risk. If you are concerned about his danger to the community then do the
things you said you could do if you were to grant bond which is have him on
House arrest essentially. He can only go to the grocery store, he only go
to church.

SHARPTON: Yes. Well, the conditions are, he can leave his home only to
attend church, court dates, medical appointments, and go to the grocery
store. He must surrender all of his firearms to either the sheriff`s
office or to his lawyer and he must wear an electronic ankle monitor.

JENKINS: Right. And so, they were saying those things would address the
danger to the community aspect of him being out on bond. And then the
other issue of presenting all of those character witnesses at his bond
hearing. So, the appellate court essentially said, when you take all of
these factors into consideration, this is someone who we think bond should
be granted to. But we`re going to let you have the final decision, trial

SHARPTON: But Ken, in the real world, I understand what the paper says.
There are a lot of people held in jail with no bond for a lot less than
murdering somebody in a theater.

MILBANK: Well, again, you know, we have a court and we have a set of rules
that go with these courts. We are a nation of laws. And even though it
may appear to be unfair to some people or appear to be unfair to the
victim`s family, we are still faced with an individual who is charged with
a crime. He`s not yet convicted of a crime. He is presumed innocent.

SHARPTON: You have many circumstances Faith where people have only been
charged with a crime, nothing near this serious and they are held without
bond for a longer period of time or unless until their trial. Does the
fact that this man was former law enforcement in your opinion have any
weight with the appeals court?

JENKINS: Oh, it clearly had weight. They actually put that in as a
reason. He served as law enforcement. He had a long, distinguished career
in law enforcement is how they described it. But this is someone who`s
charged with the most serious crime which is taking the life of someone


JENKINS: And his lawyer basically said, you know this someone who went
from 0 to 60 in a matter of a few seconds and took someone`s life. This
isn`t in a who done it. We know he did it. He confessed to do it. Doing
it. The question is, did he act in self-defense? So, the danger to the
community aspect for this man being out among the public is the most
concerning to me.

SHARPTON: Let me get to the case itself, Kim. Back in January during an
interview with police, Curtis Reeves claimed Oulson hit him with his cell
phone. Listen to this.


CURTIS REEVES, CURTIS REEVES` SHOOTER: He hit me with his fist or with
something. I think he had a cell phone in his hand. When he turned away
if me, I looked down and a cell phone was laying at my feet.


SHARPTON: Now, Reeves didn`t have any marks on his face after the
altercation. And all the witnesses say they saw Oulson throw popcorn. But
could he use this as a self-defense claim? Will this fly?

MILBANK: Well, clearly that`s their out they are going to take. They are
going to try self-defense, they may try the stand your ground law in
Florida and they`re going to try to bring it to a jury and let a jury of
his peers make the decision. But I`ll tell you what, as you are alluding
to, it sure does look like somebody over reacted and fired a weapon and
killed someone based on very little aggression. I mean, throwing a cell
phone or throwing popcorn is really not good enough to kill somebody or
fire a gun. But clearly it`s not going to be up to me. It`s going to be
up to a jury and a jury is going to hear all the evidence in this case and
have to make that decision.

SHARPTON: Well, you know, Faith, without it saying, Ken brought up the
term that just gets me going.


SHARPTON: Stand your ground. And the possibility that that could be
invoked here in Florida as you know it is something that`s in 25 states
now. But it started in Florida, that`s home, that`s ground zero, and you
might have a stand your ground defense here. The law allows people to use
deadly force if they just feel threatened. Even if it`s a box of popcorn.
The judge has warned Reeves` attorney that they need to provide at least
four weeks` warning if they plan to use the stand your ground defense. Is
it likely that they will try to use it in this case?

JENKINS: Well, so far his attorneys have been careful. They have not said
anything about stand your ground. All they said is, self-defense, this is
self-defense. So, even if they don`t invoke stand your ground and they
have that immunity hearing, it`s going to come up. Because it`s in the
jury instructions for self-defense, so it will be a part of the case.

SHARPTON: As it was with Zimmerman.

JENKINS: Right. So, we will be part of the case. When you look at
factors that they consider for the bond hearing, everything they talked
about, 71-years-old, ties to the community, former police officer, as
positive thing, reasons why he should be released on bond, I think those
things will turn around and have a detrimental impact on him in this trial.
Because it means that this is someone who should know better and know how
to react in circumstances that he was in.

SHARPTON: I`m going to have to leave it there. We`ll certainly be
watching this. Kim Padowitz, Faith Jenkins, thank you both for your time
tonight. We`ll be right back.


SHARPTON: Two Florida police officers are off the job tonight following
allegations they were in the Ku Klux Klan. These officers served in the
Fruitland Park Police Department until an FBI report identified them as
secret members of the KKK.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: An international FBI probe uncovered allegations linking
the men to a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. A confidential source
named deputy chief David Borst and Corporal George Hunnewell as Klansmen.
Borst resigned Friday, Hunnewell was fired in the allegations brought to
their chief.


SHARPTON: These are disturbing allegations. Especially as the same issue
came up in the same department five years ago. In 2009 a different officer
had to resign after it emerged that he was in the KKK. That`s him there in
the Klan hood and striped shirt. And earlier year, a local KKK leader
actually bragged to a local TV station that they had members in positions
of authority.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: What you`ve seen is just the tip of the iceberg right
now. We have police officers, paramedics, judges, you know, they`re


SHARPTON: Klansmen judges and police officers? This warrants further
investigation, especially since the KKK in Central Florida has a long,
violent history. In 1951 Klansmen were suspected of bombing the home of
civil rights activist Harry and Harriet Moore. They both died. And just
this year, KKK flyers were spotted near their home, now a historic site.
America has come a long way. And it`s easy to forget that groups like the
KKK still exist. But today`s news is a sober reminder that we still have a
long way to go and we must remain vigilant.


SHARPTON: Finally tonight, a reality check. CNBC commentator Rick
Santelli, some call him the God father of the Tea Party since he slammed
President Obama back in 2009. Today, one of his colleagues set the record


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Hey, Rick. You already decided this wasn`t going to
work five years ago.

RICK SANTELLI, CNBC COMMENTATOR: And I was right! I was right!


UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Rick, it`s impossible for you to have been more wrong,
Rick. Your call for inflation, the destruction of the dollar, the failure
of the U.S. economy to rebound. Rick, it`s impossible for you to --


Every single bit of advice you gave would have lost people money, Rick.
Lost people money, Rick. Every single bit of advice. There is no piece of
advice that you have given, Rick.

SANTELLI: They need a better strategy. Wait until next year isn`t the way
to go.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: There is no piece of advice that you have given that`s
worked, Rick. Not a single one.

SANTELLI: Yes, there is.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Not a single one, Rick.

SANTELLI: -- can do her job or his job --

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Not a single one. The higher interest rates never came.
The inability of the U.S. to sell bonds never happened. The dollar never
crashed, Rick. There isn`t a single one that`s worked for you.


SHARPTON: I have nothing it against Mr. Santelli, but the Tea Party has
been wrong over and over again. On the deficit, it`s about to dip below
$600 billion for the first time since the recession. They were wrong.
That big bad Affordable Care Act, it is working. Even 74 percent of
Republicans like their plan. They were wrong. On jobs, 52 the straight
months of private sector growth, they were wrong. So we heard all the dire
predictions. But the reality is they were wrong. I`m sorry, Tea Party.
You can have your own opinions, but facts do not lie.

Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. "HARDBALL" starts right now.


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