ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
July 23, 2014
Guest: Tony Blinken, Yael Even Or, Chris Murphy
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight, we are ALL IN.
KHALED MESHAAL, HAMAS LEADER: We are the prey, not the predator.
HAYES: Hamas says no long term cease-fire without ending the Israeli
offensive. The FAA extends its bans on flights on Tel Aviv, and Ted Cruz
calls that decision an economic boycott of Israel.
SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: We stand together to stand with Israel.
HAYES: Today, the latest from Gaza and an interview with an Israeli
reservist who is refusing to fight.
Then, Senator Chris Murphy on today`s big revelations in Ukraine.
Northeast governor not named Christie has a major corruption scandal.
And as some residents of the state revolt against taking migrants
fleeing from Central America.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They`re illegal. They need to go (ph).
HAYES: Governor Deval Patrick makes a plea for compassion.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK (D), MASSACHUSETTS: If a stranger dwells with you
in your land, you shall not mistreat him.
HAYES: Tonight, my exclusive interview with Governor Patrick.
ALL IN starts right now.
HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
A fairly stunning development tonight: politicians are urging the U.S.
to send commercial airliners into a war zone tonight. This just six days
after another commercial airliner, Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, was shot
out of the sky in another active war zone, costing the lives of all 298
people on board.
Today, the Federal Aviation Agency, tasked with protecting the safety
of American airline passengers, decided to extend by another 24 hours the
current ban on all U.S. flights in and out of Ben Gurion International
Airport outside Tel Aviv, an airport serving 90 percent of flights to and
from the state of Israel. Individual airlines began to cancel flights to
Tel Aviv yesterday after a rocket fired from Gaza, struck a suburban house
just a mile away from the airport. The FAA noticed making it official for
all American operators, some major European airlines cancelled flights as
well, including Air France, KLM and German carrier, Lufthansa.
Israeli officials objected strongly to the ban. And now, some U.S.
politicians are joining the chorus.
Michael Bloomberg booked himself a flight last night on El-Al, an
Israeli airline that continues to fly in and out of Tel Aviv, to show
solidarity with Israel and condemnation for the FAA`s decision.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL BLOOMBERG, FORMER NEW YORK MAYOR: The FAA ban gives Hamas a
win and Hamas even put out a statement to that, they`re thrilled that they
were able to cow somebody into stopping commerce and hurting Israel. We
cannot let them do that. We just can`t do that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Pro-Israel lobby AIPAC is criticizing the ban, noting it could
have the effect of isolating Israel. Newt Gingrich tweeted that Obama
handed Hamas its greatest victory by cutting off American aircraft from
Israel, the most hostile Israeli act in our country`s history. This is the
FAA saying planes can`t fly into an airport that just received rocket fire
a mile away.
And Ted Cruz working off a conspiracy theory apparently first floated
on the Internet, is accusing the Obama administration of using the flight
ban for brazen political ends. Quote, "The facts suggest that President
Obama has just used a federal regulatory agency to launch an economic
boycott on Israel, in order to try to force our ally to comply with his
foreign policy demands. If so, Congress should demand answers."
The Texas senator now vowing to hold up all State Department nominees
until questions are answered about the ban.
This afternoon, the State Department spokesman Marie Harf rejected
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARIE HARF, STATE DEPT. SPOKESPERSON: It`s ridiculous and offensive
quite frankly. The FAA takes their responsibilities very serious. I will
speak for them in that case. They make decisions based solely on the
security and safety of American citizens, period. For anyone to suggest
otherwise is just ridiculous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Meanwhile, the war continued to rage on today. With 90
rockets fired into Israel, over 100 targets attacked in Gaza by the IDF in
the last day alone. Over 700 Palestinians now, and at least 32 Israeli
Defense Forces soldiers have died since the conflict began.
European astronaut Alexander Gerst posted an aerial photo of the
explosions taken as the International Space Station flew over the region
tonight, calling it, quote, "My saddest photo yet."
Secretary of State John Kerry touched down in Tel Aviv today, on a
military plane, to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas,
and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in ongoing attempts to
negotiate a cease-fire.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN KERRY, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: We will continue to push for
this cease-fire. We will continue to work with President Abbas and others
in the region in order to achieve it. And I can tell you that we have in
the last 24 hours made some progress in moving towards that goal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: I spoke earlier with the president`s deputy national security
officer, Tony Blinken. And I started by asking his response to Senator Ted
TONY BLINKEN, DEPUTY NATIONAL SECURIT OFFICER: The response is, it`s
plane and simply wrong. The FAA acts independently, it makes judgments
about the safety and security of American airlines and American passengers.
We`re not in the business of second guessing the FAA or telling it what to
do. The FAA is now working very closely with Israel to try and resolve the
concerns that were raised by the incident yesterday. I`m very hopeful that
that will happen.
And, frankly, Chris, the only people who are playing politics with
this issue are the folks who are accusing us of playing politics with the
HAYES: Secretary Kerry says the negotiations are making progress.
What exactly does progress mean and look like given the current situation?
BLINKEN: So, Secretary Kerry is intensely engaged in trying to get a
cease-fire. In the first instance, a short term humanitarian cease-fire,
and that will work the space necessary to have some kind of durable
solution that involves, first and foremost, Hamas stopping, raining down
rockets on Israel, sending terrorists in tunnels to kidnap or kill
Israelis, and at the same time trying to alleviate the living conditions
for the Palestinians who are in Gaza living under very, very difficult
HAYES: One of the keys to making the circumstances so difficult, of
course, is the fact that the Palestinians in Gaza have a very hard time
getting out of Gaza. Egypt has closed one of the main border crossings.
Today, Khaled Meshaal, one of the commander of Hamas, basically said the
single most important demand, they won`t consider a cease-fire until Israel
pledges to lift the siege on Gaza.
What is your -- what`s the White House`s feeling about that?
BLINKEN: I think the most urgent thing is to get the cease-fire, and
then these other issues, which are important, can be discussed and
negotiated and dealt with. But unless and until we get a cease-fire, then
the terrible violence that we`re seeing will continue.
The Israelis have to be able to have clear assurances that the rockets
will stop, the tunneling is going to stop, the terrorism will stop. And
from there, these other questions can be discussed and negotiated.
HAYES: So, you order a cease-fire and then negotiations. But no kind
of negotiated cease-fire that would include some of the items that some,
including Palestinian Authority, are calling for?
BLINKEN: What you can do is have a short cease-fire, a humanitarian
cease-fire for a week or so, and start to engage these other issues. And
then if there`s not satisfaction on those issues, the parties will have to
make their own decisions.
But the point is, to get the cease-fire to stop the violence in the
shooting, and then to work on these issues, that`s the way to go. Israel
has accepted that, this is an Egyptian initiative, Hamas is the holdout.
So, the real question now is, will Hamas accept the cease-fire? And
that will enable all of us to work on these other issues.
HAYES: One of the things that makes this difficult for Secretary
Kerry, of course, is the fact that he`s not negotiating directly with
Hamas. The U.S. says it`s a terrorist group and does not recognize it as a
Given the fact the secretary across the table from the Iranians, who
many Israelis feel represent a far greater threat to their country and
sponsor terrorism in other places, why not just negotiate this directly
BLINKEN: We have other countries, including Qatar, including Turkey,
who have relationships with Hamas, and indeed, the secretary is directly
engaged with them. They`re engaged with Hamas, and they have the ability
to find out what Hamas is prepared to do --
HAYES: Why not just talk to them directly?
BLINKEN: Hamas is a terrorist organization. And we`re not in the
business of dealing with them.
But other countries can, other countries will, and the question now,
before us is whether Hamas will accept the Egyptian initiative and cease-
HAYES: What`s the difference between Iran and Hamas?
BLINKEN: A big difference, but Iran in the first instance is a
country with whom we`re engaged in a discussion about whether we can end
the nuclear threat that they pose through their program, and that`s
something that as you know, we`ve been intensely engaged in, and it`s
profoundly in the interest of the United States and the international
community writ large.
HAYES: Tony Blinken, deputy national security adviser to President
Barack Obama -- thank you very much.
BLINKEN: Thanks, Chris.
HAYES: Israel`s urging the U.S. to reverse the FAA`s ban on flights
to Tel Aviv, arguing the airport is perfectly secure. And tourists are
being encouraged to go on with business as usual. Tour groups like
Birthright continue to operate despite the war. But for weeks, Israel has
been emphasizing the state of fear and insecurity created by the constant
threat of rocket fire.
(VIDEO CLIP PLAYS)
HAYES: And it`s this very real sense of being under attack that
contributes to Israeli`s overwhelming support for the military`s current
offensive in Gaza. With 80 percent in favor of the current operation, and
94 percent satisfied with the IDF, Israeli Defense Forces, performances,
according to one poll.
In Israel, unlike the U.S., almost everyone is required to serve in
the armed forces, they have an intimate understanding of what war really
And today, a group of Israeli reservists chose to voice their
objections to the Gaza war in "The Washington Post", writing, quote, "We
are more than 50 Israelis who were once soldiers and now declare our
refusal to be part of the reserves. We oppose the Israeli army and the
conscription law. Partly, that`s because we revile the current military
operation. But for us, the army is flawed for reasons far broader than
Operation Protective Edge, or even the occupation. We rue the
militarization of Israel and the army`s discriminatory policies."
Joining me now is Yael Even Or. She`s an Israeli reservist and co-
wrote that letter. She`s also contributor to "The Washington Post".
YAEL EVEN OR, THE WASHINGTON POST: Thank you for having me.
MADDOW: So, this was a pretty gutsy thing to do. I mean, I think a
lot of your fellow Israelis, a lot of Americans who are supporters of
Israel, whether they`re Jewish, Christian or otherwise say your country`s
under attack, you signed on to be a citizen and to serve in the armed
forces and you`re abandoning your country in your time of need?
OR: Yes. So, well, to be accurate, the army didn`t call me right
now, I stopped going there, a few years ago. But I`m still under reserves
and that we were looking for an opportunity to declare our refusal in terms
of our political because if you want to refuse going to the army, you have
to do it in another way usually. So, we wanted to say, it is political.
We publish it now because we felt there`s an urgency in this statement
now, because we`re deeply concerned about what`s going on in Gaza Strip
right now. We mentioned the numbers, I don`t have to go over it. But we
actually started to work on this thing months ago. And we wanted to open a
discussion about militarization, and the connection to the offensive (ph),
to show that they`re inseparable.
HAYES: You make an argument in the letter that basically says the
fact that everyone does serve in the army, and the role that the IDF has in
Israeli life which is quite prominent contributes to a toxic effect in
which military solutions are raised up above political solutions.
OR: Yes, I mean, we can see it now, with the support the IDF is
getting, even though all of us wrote a letter, we don`t think that was
necessary. We think the Israeli government could have addressed this issue
in political means. There`s a constant feeling among us that political
means are never being exhausted before going into wars.
And that is -- it`s also the most difficult time to talk against the
HAYES: Yes, I would imagine -- I mean, there is -- what is the space
right now for dissent in Israel against this war. It doesn`t seem like
there`s much of it, frankly. I mean, it seems that the overwhelming
majority of Israelis support it.
OR: So, there are reports by organizations in Israel that there are
dozens of people who refuse to go to the military and participate in the
operation. They didn`t go public, and so, there`s a reason. For us to go
public right now, even though we didn`t get the current call up, was a
statement of supporting them, supporting everyone that refused to go to the
HAYES: America has been through 13 years of unceasing war, the
longest period of war in history. One of the things is a very small
percentage of Americans have had to fight for the whole nation and have
gone through five and six and seven deployment and it`s created a very
strange situation in America, a small group of people sacrificing, a larger
group going about life.
A lot of people point to something like Israel and say, well, there,
everyone`s together, right? That it somehow binds the nation together to
have everyone serving the military.
OR: Yes, of course, people will talk about solidarity and about
equality. What we`re trying to challenge is the perception and to say that
we don`t want to live in a society where you have to go to the army when
you`re 18, (INAUDIBLE) if you won`t go because you don`t want to hold a
weapon when you`re 18, you`re doomed to pay a very high price. That`s the
place to say that stating something like we did, it`s a huge privilege,
because the risks are really, really high for most people. It`s not even
about -- it`s not that everyone actually is going to the army, it`s more
about the efforts around it.
HAYES: What`s going to happen to you when you go back to Israel?
OR: To me? I think I`ll be fine.
HAYES: People will be angry at you?
OR: Yes, people are already angry.
HAYES: Very angry.
OR: Some people are angry. The message, and I guess -- yes, but the
message was more important to us.
HAYES: What is, do you see this movement growing? Do you see
people`s opposition to what you say is the kind of militarism of Israeli
society in retreat or advance?
OR: I really hope so. The whole idea was to start a movement that
would object the conscription and the army as a whole. And it`s mainly
because we can`t -- I think when we take -- we think about the structure in
Israel, with the IDF -- with the current structure of the IDF, we can`t
imagine a solution, or we can`t imagine a way out of it.
HAYES: It`s very hard to think of Israel without the IDF. It is, of
course, the -- it was a nation that was born after being declared -- war
declared on it and fought its way out of that.
Yael Even Or, thank you so much. I really appreciate it.
OR: Thank you.
HAYES: Tonight, we may be closer to knowing who shot down Malaysia
Airlines Flight 17 in eastern Ukraine.
Plus, some late breaking news, we learn tonight an execution in
Arizona has gone horribly wrong. The story is still unfolding. We`ll tell
you what we know, ahead.
HAYES: An incredible and heart-wrenching scene in the Netherlands
today. Hundreds of people lining the road to pay their respects, as 40 of
the victims of Flight MH17, were driven in a convoy of hearses from
Eindhoven Airport to nearby military barracks, forensic experts will begin
identifying the bodies. A hundred ninety-three of the 298 people on board
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 were Dutch.
Meanwhile, there are reports of at least one Dutch family having to
cancel the credit card of their lost loved one after discovering it was
being used by someone in Ukraine who apparently took it from the crash
Senator Chris Murphy will be with me to discuss this maddening
situation and the potentially game changing claims about who shot down that
plane. That story is next.
Stay with us.
HAYES: Today, a break in the case in the mystery surrounding just who
shot down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in Eastern Ukraine. We know that
U.S. intelligence believes it was shot down by an SA-11 missile, also known
as a BUK, BUK missile, fired from rebel-held territory. But pinpointing it
to a separatist group today moved us one step closer.
We already knew the Ukrainian military and the Russian military have
the BUK system. In June, Russian state media congratulated the pro-Russian
separatists on their latest military acquisition, which was drum roll, a
set of Russian-made BUK missile launchers seized from a Ukrainian air force
base. The Donetsk resistance fighters have captured an anti-aircraft
military station, declared the Kremlin`s main television network Vesti.
Yet minute after the news of MH17 captured the world`s attention,
separatist leader Oleg Tsarev of the self-proclaimed Donetsk`s People`s
Republic told "Time" magazine, "We don`t have weapons that can take down a
plane from that altitude", a full denial.
Furthermore, as recently as two days ago, Alexander Borodai, the self-
proclaimed prime minister of the Donetsk People`s Republic, denied being in
position of a BUK missile system.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALEXANDER BORODAI, DONETSK PEOPLE`S REPUBLIC: I am telling you again,
we have never been in possession of even a single BUK system. I can list
all of the means of defense that we have in our possessions. All of these
means of defense are capable of crashing only the low flying targets.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: But today, yet another rebel leader, Alexander Khodakovsky,
commander of the Vostok battalion, seemed to give up the goods, saying that
the Luhansk People`s Republic, which is different from the Donetsk People`s
Republic, had a BUK missile system, again a type of system that allegedly
shot down MH17, I`m reading from "Reuters."
"I knew that a BUK came from Luhansk. At the time, I was told that a
BUK from Luhansk was coming under the flag of the LNR", he said, referring
to the Luhansk People`s Republic, the main separatists group operating in
Luhansk, one of two rebel provinces along with Donetsk.
"That BUK, I know about, I heard about it, I think they sent it back,
because I found out about it at exactly the moment that I found out this
tragedy had taken place. They probably sent it back in order to remove
proof its presence," Khodakovsky told "Reuters" on Tuesday.
Now, that sounds like a smoking gun, I mean, that sounds like a
confession, an admission. Then just a few hours ago, in a further twist,
came news that Khodakovsky is apparently backing off his claims.
Khodakovsky himself told "Life News", a Russian news agency with links to
Moscow`s security services, he was misquoted. Reuters got it wrong, and
merely discussed possible versions with "Reuters". Khodakovsky said the
rebels do not have and never have had a BUK.
Joining me now, Senator Chris Murphy, Democrat from Connecticut. He`s
a member of the Foreign Relations Committee.
Senator, how much does it matter whether it`s ever definitively
established, because it seems like the world, the U.S., the West, Europe,
particularly, have already basically concluded that Russian-backed
separatists are to blame for this?
SEN. CHRIS MURPHY (D), CONNECTICUT: Yes, I think that`s the point.
Yes, I think that`s exactly the point. I mean, our intelligence officials
are confident that they have this missile system, and to my mind, it
doesn`t really matter whether there was a Russian standing next to the
Ukraine who fired it, whether there was a Russian soldier who fired it,
because but for the Russian provocation and support and assistance and
direction of the insurrection and separatist there, there wouldn`t be
fighting in the first place, there wouldn`t be missiles taking airplanes
out of the sky.
And so, I`ve said from the very beginning, that it doesn`t really
matter in the end exactly who pulled the trigger, or exactly where this
weapon came from. Russia has blood on its hands because the minute the
Russians decide to stop funding the separatists, is when this rebellion
ends, when this hostilities end.
HAYES: Let me take the other side of this, one of the things I think
has been lost and was a surprise to people in the shot down is, this is
very much an active war zone. I mean, there are mortar shells, there are
two more Ukrainian planes shot down today we got reports, fighter jets
taken down. I asked a "Washington Post" reporter Michael Birnbaum who was
in that region, what the folks on the ground, the Eastern Ukrainian, were
making of the war around them. Here`s what he had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL BIRNBAUM, THE WASHINGTON POST: People have lots of different
ideas. But they, by and large, are really angry with the Ukrainian
military for what they see as an offensive that does not make any
distinguishing between the rebels who have taken up arms and ordinary
civilians. A lot of residential complexes have been hit with artillery
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Are you confident the Ukrainian government is taking adequate
precautions around the civilian population as it pursues its military
campaign against the separatists in eastern Ukraine?
MURPHY: Well, over the course of about 10 years, the Russians very
intentionally hollowed out the capabilities of the Ukrainian military.
They have people embedded within those organizations, so as to render them
largely ineffective. So, of course, you`re going to have mistakes, some
rather large ones by the Ukrainian military as they try to push back
against this rebellion.
But the reality is, is that if they don`t draw the line, it won`t
stop. Putin`s ambition here I don`t think is to just simply control the
east. I think he will continue to march his forces, the separatists, for
as far as they will go into Kiev, if that`s where the path leads them.
And so, it was perfectly within the rights of the Ukrainian government
to fight back. But, of course, without, you know, modern training over the
course of 10 years, this is going to be an effective pushback to say the
least at times.
HAYES: The Ukrainian prime minister, Poroshenko, said the other day
in an interview, that Ukraine is united now, that we`ve gotten past our
differences, we all want to be one country. And yet, this is the second
day in a row that we saw fist fights on the floor of parliament in Ukraine.
Are you -- there they are in split screen. Are you confident the
government is indeed united?
MURPHY: Well, it was -- this is a very difficult time for them.
They`re managing this insurrection in the east, amidst an economic
meltdown. And every day that this conflict continues, their economy gets
worst and worst. So, of course, there are going to be tensions.
But I think Poroshenko is the right leader for the right time, and
ultimately, he`s got a message that I think will sell in Eastern Ukraine.
Eastern Ukrainians don`t want to be part of Russia, but they want more
power. For instance, there`s no reason why they shouldn`t be allowed to
elect their own governors. There`s no reason why they shouldn`t have
robust trade with Russia.
And so, I think that -- yes, there is a deal here, ultimately, where
he can deliver a lot of what Eastern Ukraine wants and unite the country
around a less centralized form of government.
HAYES: Senator Chris Murphy, thank you so much.
HAYES: A mystery in New York today. Did Governor Cuomo corrupts the
commission he set up to get rid of corruption? I`ll talk to one of the
nation`s top anti-corruption crusaders who`s now calling for the governor
to resign, ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL KIEFER, "ARIZONA REPUBLIC": He would open his mouth and you
could see his chest move and go all the way down to his stomach. So, it
was a clear gasp. And it just looked like a fish opening and closing his
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: A fish opening and closing its mouth.
Tonight, breaking news of a horribly botched execution in Arizona.
The execution Joseph Wood, sentenced to death for the murder of his ex-
girlfriend and her father, started at 1:52 p.m. local time. He was
pronounced dead nearly at 3:49 p.m. local time, nearly two hours.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KIEFER: This is the fifth execution I have witnessed. I have seen
them done with thiopental, with pentobarbital.
Usually, it takes about 10 minutes, the person goes to sleep. This
was not that. This -- it looked like that at the beginning for maybe the
first seven minutes. He closed his eyes, he went to sleep. Then he
started gasping and he did. He gasped for more than an hour-and-a-half.
And when the doctor would come in to check his consciousness, he would
turn the mike on, and you could hear a deep snoring, sucking-air sound.
And this when on more than an hour-and-a-half. The whole process took
probably, well, about two hours from start to finish.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The death of Joseph Wood was so drawn out, his lawyers had
time to draft and file an emergency stay over an hour into the execution.
It read -- quote -- "The Arizona Department of Corrections began the
execution of Joseph Rudolph Wood III at 1:52 p.m. At 1:57 p.m., ABC
reported Mr. Wood was sedated. But at 2:02, he began to breathe. At 2:03,
his mouth moved. Mr. Wood been continued to breathe since that time. He
has gasping and snorting for more than an hour. At 3:02 p.m. staff
rechecked for sedation. He is still alive. This execution has violated
Mr. Wood`s Eighth Amendment right to be executed in the absence of cruel
and unusual punishment."
Mr. Wood`s lawyers had requested a stay of execution before, citing,
among other things, concerns about the execution drugs. The two-drug
combination Arizona said it will now use for executions, utilizing
midazolam and hydromorphone, was first used in a January execution in Ohio
that saw an inmate choke, gasp and take nearly 25 minutes to die.
The Supreme Court lifted that stay of execution yesterday, paving the
way for today. Arizona Governor Jan Brewer just released a statement on
the matter this hour -- quote -- "I am concerned by the length of time it
took to complete for the administered drug protocol to complete the lawful
execution of the convicted double murderer Joseph Wood. While justice was
carried out today, I direct the Department of Corrections to conduct a full
review of the process. One thing is certain, however. Inmate Wood died in
a lawful manner and by eyewitness and medical accounts, he did not suffer.
This is in stark comparison to the gruesome, vicious suffering he inflicted
on his two victims and the lifetime of suffering he has caused their
Tonight at 9:00, Rachel Maddow will have much more on this still
developing story, including an interview with one of Wood`s attorney who
witnessed the execution. Do not miss that.
We will be right back.
HAYES: When people talk about political corruption in the state of
New York, in the New York capital, Albany, there`s one word you tend to
hear a awful lot, cesspool. No, seriously, cesspool.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The other thing that`s struck me about Albany is
the cesspool of corruption that pervades the culture of this town.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This building is a cesspool of corruption. And
that`s got to stop.
RACHEL MADDOW, HOST, "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW": It`s hard to stress
just how bipartisan, let`s say nonpartisan, a disgusting cesspool of public
corruption and terrible behavior this really is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Headlines about political corruption in New York appear with
numbing regularity. Ten state officials have been implicated in just the
past 18 months.
So, it`s no surprise a new poll found that two-thirds of New York
voters think Albany lawmakers are corrupt, or to quote "The New York Daily
News," New York voters think their state legislature is, yes, a cesspool.
New York`s Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo has made Albany corruption
a big, big issue. He`s the guy who was going to clean it up. Not long
after revelations of a bribery plot in the mayor`s race last year,
involving a state lawmaker, Cuomo created a new panel known as the Moreland
Commission to investigate the state`s political corruption.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D), NEW YORK: Politicians in Albany won`t like it,
but I work for the people, and I won`t stop fighting until we all have a
government that we can trust.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The governor vowed the Moreland Commission would be
But a blockbuster investigative story in "The New York Times" today
offers evidence it was far from it and that it was Cuomo`s office that was
to blame, "The Times" reporting T. after the commission issued a subpoena
to a media buying firm that counted Cuomo among its clients, Cuomo`s most
senior aide, Larry Schwartz, called a commission co-chair and ordered him
to `pull it back."
The subpoena was swiftly withdrawn. That`s just one example from the
"Times" investigation, which found that Cuomo`s office "deeply compromised"
the commission`s work. Federal prosecutors are now investigating the role
Cuomo and his aides played in shutting the commission down in March, months
before it was supposed to wrap up its work.
We reached out to Governor Cuomo`s office to invite him on the show
tonight and didn`t get a response.
Joining me now, Lawrence Lessig, professor of law at Harvard Law
School. He`s launched a petition urging the governor to resign if he did
indeed interfere with the commission.
All right, Larry, you are one of the big anti-corruption crusaders of
our time. Why have you launched this petition?
LAWRENCE LESSIG, HARVARD LAW SCHOOL: Well, if in fact he has
interfered with this commission which he set up and called an independent
commission, that cuts to the core of the trust that we were supposed to
have in a process like this, designed to bring out and to end the
corruption in New York.
And the challenge here is for him to demonstrate that in fact he was
living up to the promise that he gave when he said he was going to set up
an independent commission. If "The Times" report is true, then he did not
do that. He has instead set up a commission, a puppet commission, and
behind the scenes has tried to play it to make it look like it was doing
what it promised to do, but in fact was doing nothing more than exercising
the power that would benefit him.
HAYES: Cuomo`s office wrote a very lengthy response to "The New York
Times," 15 pages or so published on their Web site.
And I can`t get into all of it. The main thrust was, basically, we
set up this commission. It reported to the governor`s office. Of course
it reported to us. We had to have some role in what it did and didn`t do.
And there`s nothing wrong about that. It`s not like we were dealing with
some criminal investigation from a district attorney. This was our
commission we set up. And we ran it how we wanted to run it.
LESSIG: Yes, it`s Nixonian in its characterization.
Remember, when Nixon appointed -- or had the attorney general appoint
Archibald Cox to look at the Watergate affair, Nixon didn`t like what Cox
was doing, and Nixon said you shouldn`t be asking for our tapes. And Nixon
said, look, Cox, you work for me. And Cox said, no, I work for the
And Nixon said to the attorney general, get rid of this guy. And the
attorney general said, I can`t do that. The laws says I can`t do that.
In this case, when the commission starts issuing subpoenas, they`re
invoking the law. And when you start invoking the law and using the legal
power like that, the question that raises is whether the governor`s
authority, whether the governor`s discretion has been restricted.
And my view is, at least that`s what is suggested by what`s going on
with the U.S. attorney, that in fact it was restricted. And so the mere
fact that he had set it up doesn`t mean he gets to control everything that
happens inside it. If he wanted to have his press people run an
investigation, he could have set up the press people running an
But when you call it an independent commission, you invoke the power
of the law with a subpoena, you`re restricted in what you can do, and you
just can`t say it`s ours to do with as we want.
HAYES: So, what about this? Look, the guy has got to get stuff done,
he would say. The governor would say, I have gotten a lot of things done,
I have gotten my agenda through. I have been very effective. Albany`s a
tough town. You have to break some eggs to make an omelet.
LESSIG: Yes, well, Albany may be a tough town, and he may have done a
lot of things.
The question here though is whether he`s behaving in a corrupt or non-
corrupt way with a commission designed to flesh out corruption. And my
view is, if you reach in and you start affecting what the commission can
do, a commission which was originally set up to look at government -- he
said, if they want to go after me, they can go after me.
A commission set up originally to look at government, which is steered
to then look to the legislature exclusively, that commission controlled in
that way betrays the very kind of corruption which he says he`s trying to
bring out. He believes -- he is behaving as if he`s above the law here,
and that is the keystone of corruption.
And that`s the reason that we have said that if in fact this is what
he`s done, he needs to step aside. This is worse than the kind of internal
corruption that brought down governors like Spitzer. This is one at the
core of what he`s doing.
HAYES: Lawrence Lessig from Harvard, thanks a lot.
LESSIG: Thank you.
Ahead, my exclusive interview with Massachusetts Governor Deval
Patrick on how the immigration crisis is affecting his state.
HAYES: If anyone knows what it`s like to have a lot of visitors, the
residents of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, do.
But, apparently, a certain type of visitor not so welcome in the Cape
Cod town of Bourne this summer. As the crisis of tens of thousands of
unaccompanied migrant children coming across the borders has intensified,
so has the challenge of housing them.
And Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick announced a plan last week to
offer secure temporary housing in his state for some migrant children
apprehended at the border.
And so the Cape Cod town of Bourne, a community thousands of miles
from the border, has found itself embroiled in this fight, as officials
there voted to send Governor Deval Patrick a letter opposing the housing of
"Boston Globe" reported one local official at the town meeting --
quote -- "elicited applause from the crowd when she declared that money
spent on immigrants could be better spent on citizens in the community."
That official also saying -- quote -- "Something should have been done
years ago to keep people from coming across the border." And one local
resident held a banner reading -- quote -- "Send them back, they broke the
But as ugly as the response to this crisis has become in Bourne and
towns like it across the country, one of the most compelling voices
weighing in on the side of trying to help has been Massachusetts Governor
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK (D), MASSACHUSETTS: America and this commonwealth
in particular has given sanctuary to desperate children for centuries. We
have rescued Irish children from famine, Russian and Ukrainian children
from religious persecution, Cambodian children from genocide, Haitian
children from earthquakes, Sudanese children from civil war, and children
from New Orleans from Hurricane Katrina.
Once in 1939, we turned our backs on Jewish children fleeing the
Nazis, and it remains a blight on our national reputation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Earlier tonight, I spoke with Governor Patrick.
I asked him about the condemnation of his plane to help house migrant
children in Cape Cod.
PATRICK: God bless them. I represent them too.
And many of the concerns that have been raised are quite reasonable
ones you would expect from citizens and from local officials. I also think
that the answers that have been given us by the Obama administration are
We`re talking about a short-term duration, housing a limited number of
people in a secure facility, not integrating them in communities, because
indeed they`re being processed through and under the immigration laws. And
it`s a way to relieve the suffering of children.
And I think there`s a way to do that and a way that`s been proposed to
do that, where we as citizens of Massachusetts and citizens of the nation
HAYES: So, when you hear someone -- this is a reporter who attended a
town hall in Bourne about this very issue -- saying, "These people don`t
have the same culture we have in Bourne. We have to protect our children.
They`re adults. They know what they`re doing. They`re going to be sucking
us dry. Send them back."
What`s your reaction to hearing that kind of sentiment?
PATRICK: Well, obviously, that sort of language is unhelpful and
coarse. It`s not the first time in American history that newcomers have
been talked about in terms like that.
And every time, over the course of a century-and-a-half or so of
fairly regular immigration, and some of that in waves, we have had to
endure all of that until we got to our higher and better selves.
And we have been stronger as a nation as we have done so. Of course,
in this case, we`re not talking about integrating the children into
Massachusetts or American society and culture. We`re talking about where
they can be housed and fed and clothed and schooled while they`re processed
under our law. And I think we ought to be able to do that.
HAYES: Well, let me push on that from the other side. Why not? Why
only 35 days?
Isn`t America with its 300 million people and one of the most
powerful, wealthiest nations on earth, can`t it absorb 90,000 children and
terrified parents who are running from terrible violence?
PATRICK: Yes. Yes.
Well, look, I guess my point is that -- that the immigration debate
generally is one where at least I feel, Chris, we get a lot more -- a lot
more heat than we do light. I think there`s general agreement that we need
comprehensive immigration reform that is more consistent with our values.
And the first person I ever heard describe the problem and the
response that way was George W. Bush when he was president of the United
States. There used to be a bipartisan understanding that not only have we
broken -- we have a broken set of laws, but that we need reform that makes
us as open-doored as we are open-hearted.
We are the only superpower in history, as one very famous man once
said, whose power comes from giving, not from taking. And I hope that
there is a way ultimately for us to welcome the suffering, the huddled
masses from around the world, because, historically, that has made us
But my point is, the question about whether or not to help shelter
these desperate children, and some of them as young as 3 years old, now at
the southern border is a separate question from what our immigration laws
ought to be.
We have got a humanitarian crisis on our doorstep right now. And good
ethics and good morals, I think, demand that we do something about that.
HAYES: There are people who look at what Governor Perry has done in
Texas, with ordering the National Guard down there, in a very conservative
red state, and say, that`s politics, that`s posturing.
But someone could look at you and say, well, you`re a blue state
liberal and it`s Massachusetts, and it`s going to play well to the crowd to
trumpet your own empathy. Is this essentially a politically advantageous
position for you to take?
As you can see, as you mentioned from the -- as you can see from the
letter that you quoted -- I haven`t gotten it yet, but I have heard about -
- I have heard about some of the comments at that meeting in Bourne -- that
there are views on both sides of this issue here in Massachusetts.
And you know what? I have never thought that we were as reliably blue
or as reliably liberal as we`re sometimes painted. We have the whole
spectrum of points of view. I`m trying to assure that our citizens` points
of view on this issue are informed by fact. And that`s not always easy too
do, when so much of the general immigration debate is not.
But we have seen -- and we saw it very recently in the wake of the
marathon bombings -- that we are capable of enormous grace and magnanimity
when we`re called upon to do so. And, frankly, we have seen that through
history in this commonwealth and in this country. And that`s the nerve I`m
trying to touch right now.
HAYES: Governor of Massachusetts Deval Patrick, thank you for your
PATRICK: Thank you, Chris.
HAYES: We know what happens when migrants arrive in this country, but
what happens when they`re deported back to their own?
My next guest just returned from Honduras and he will tell us next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): It`s a crime to enter a
country illegally, but what other option do we have? In my case, I will
tell you, it`s out of necessity.
ROY GERMANO, VICE NEWS (through translator): You have been
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): A lot. A lot.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: It`s been a growing political consensus the way to address the
influx of young mothers and unaccompanied children arriving at the U.S.-
Mexico border from Central America is to accelerate the process by which
they are deported, which is now being called repatriation.
But what happens after they`re deported? What happens when they get
off the plane back in Central America?
Here to answer that question is my next guest, Roy Germano, producer
and host of "Immigrant America" for VICE News, just returned from Honduras,
where you were speaking to people that went through this.
HAYES: Olga and her 5-year-old son came to the U.S. They were among
the first deported. They got back to Honduras.
GERMANO: You get a bag that has some beans, and some rice and some
spaghetti. And they give you a free ride to the bus station and maybe a
few bucks to catch a ride back to your home community. And you`re on your
own after that.
HAYES: Why had they come in the first place?
GERMANO: Necessity mainly.
Olga is a mother of 3, but also both of her brothers were killed, so
she`s raising her nephews. And she`s also supporting her mom. And she
just can`t find enough work to support everybody.
HAYES: So, was she an economic refugee or was she -- economic migrant
or was she fleeing violence?
GERMANO: It`s both. It`s usually both cases.
And it`s I think a different kind of refugee than we see in sort of a
war sort of situation. These are people that are living in a place where
anything can happen at any time with the violence. Nobody is immune to the
violence. We have reported, for example, on the deportation story. A
journalist right next to us two days as murdered. So, it can happen to
HAYES: This is Herlyn Espinal.
GERMANO: Herlyn Espinal, yes.
HAYES: Who you were standing next to you, and two days, just -- he
GERMANO: Yes. We were five feet away from him.
And that`s -- when that happened, that`s where it really hit me, that
it`s a deceptively beautiful country and the people are very hospitable.
But these gangs are there, and they don`t mess around. So, people are
leaving because of poverty, but they are also leaving because there`s this
HAYES: How much could you feel that other element? I think it`s very
hard for us to get an image. We have an image of what a war zone looks
HAYES: We have an image of what a country that is struggling with
poverty looks like. But this idea of these gangs that are so threatening,
how present did that feel?
GERMANO: Part of it is, we can`t take our cameras a lot of times to
these areas, not only because it would endanger us, but because it would
endanger the people that we would be interviewing, because they would get a
lot of questions.
But one night, we rode around with the police, the military police,
the army, and the national police all at once, to go to a murder scene.
And, yes, you can feel it. We were going. We thought there was one body
at this murder scene. And they started digging in this area. And it
turned out there were three or four, just bodies that had just been there
for months and someone finally called it in.
It`s ever present. It`s pretty intense down there.
HAYES: Is there any degree to which people that try to leave have
gotten deported back are known to the gangs that they -- is there some sort
of punitive fear that they`re going to be targeted because they tried to
GERMANO: We didn`t come across that.
But, as a rule, I ask people, are you going to go back or not? And it
was interesting their reaction. Some people were just like, I`m done,
throwing in the towel. I will just make the best of it here. And other
people said, yes, I will go back. A lot of people said they`re going to
wait it out, because they know this is all going to blow over here.
HAYES: That`s the question. How much is the coverage, how much is
the humanitarian crisis, we call here, and the coverage here getting back
there? How is it being covered there?
GERMANO: People are so aware of it. And people know now what the law
is. And they know what they`re doing is illegal and that they probably
won`t get in.
I think though people are going to hang back for a while and just let
all the media attention blow over.
HAYES: It is getting back there that we`re covering a lot, and that
people -- that there`s a sort of ramped-up deportation?
GERMANO: Yes, definitely.
HAYES: And folks are more aware of what the sort of law says?
GERMANO: More aware, yes, definitely.
HAYES: But, of course, the things pushing them out are going to
GERMANO: They are.
But I know how politics works. And I know no one`s going to do this,
but if you really want to solve this problem, investing in education and
giving kids opportunity back there. And there are organizations that are
working down there to help kids stay. So, anybody who wants to be part of
the solution should look for those sorts of opportunities.
HAYES: Roy Germano of VICE News, thanks so much. Great reporting.
GERMANO: Thanks a lot.
HAYES: All right, that`s ALL IN for this evening.
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