Date: October 10, 2014
Guest: Rep. Joaquin Castro, Ryan Haygood, Buddy Cianci, Ellis Henican,
CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST: Cool the karma, show me the money.
Let`s play HARDBALL.
Good evening. I`m Chris Matthews in the beautiful state of North
Carolina, where nothing could be finer.
That`s not the way it was in Phoenix, Arizona, yesterday, where the
chief executive officer of Microsoft, a presumably state-of -- the art hi-
tech industry, told women to hush up, do their work and let their karma get
them a raise some day. That`s if they deserve one.
The "sit back and shut up" advice did not go over well. CEO
(INAUDIBLE) Nadella, who was speaking to a conference celebrating women in
the tech world, is an old-fashioned lightning rod right now, especially for
women who believe they`ve been getting the short end of the stick and don`t
want to rely on the kindness of bosses.
Here are the Microsoft biggie`s words that got him in all the hot
water. They came when he was asked for advice to those women who find it
difficult to ask for a raise.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SATYA NADELLA, MICROSOFT CEO: It`s not really about asking for the
raise, but knowing and having faith that the system will actually give you
the right raises as you go along. And that, I think, might be one of the
additional superpowers that, quite frankly, women who don`t ask for a raise
have because that`s good karma. It`ll come back because somebody`s going
to know, That`s the kind of person that I want to trust. That`s the kind
of person that I want to really give more responsibility to.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, those remarks set off 4th of July fireworks across
the country, and not the celebration kind, forcing Nadella to put out a
statement to his own Microsoft employees. They carried the familiar form
of the public apology. "I answered that question completely wrong. I
believe men and women should get equal pay for equal work. If you think
you deserve a raise, you should just ask."
Well, earlier today, on "MORNING JOE, co-host Mika Brzezinski remarked
on Nadella`s advice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKA BRZEZINSKI, CO-HOST, "MORNING JOE": That is exactly the opposite
of -- that has been the problem that women confront. They actually think
if they put their head down and work really hard, someone is going to
notice, while guys are banging on the table, saying, Where`s my raise?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, Mika Brzezinski`s the author of a much respected book
addressing this very issue. Its title, "Knowing Your Value." And Mika
Brzezinski joins us right now.
What is your reaction to the apology? Is this just a pro forma thing,
or do you think he was saying what meant the first time?
BRZEZINSKI: You can`t retract a mindset, Chris. And what he said, he
said very articulately and it was profoundly disturbing to me. I mean,
this was tantamount to telling women to behave, to patting them on the head
and saying, Just do what you do, and some day, it`ll get noticed.
The first thing that came to my mind, was, Oh, my God, one of the most
powerful CEOs in America just fed into the big lie that women tell
themselves every day, that if they do a good job and keep their head down,
somebody`s going to notice. And that`s exactly why we`re in the situation
we`re in, at least one of the main reasons, and why we don`t get what we
MATTHEWS: You talk as if from experience. Can you tell us some of
BRZEZINSKI: Well, yes.
MATTHEWS: What you`ve learned about it.
BRZEZINSKI: Absolutely. Look, I wrote the book "Knowing Your Value"
based on my own experiences of 25 years working in television and
apologizing my way into negotiations, letting other people speak for me,
thinking if I work really hard, they`ll notice.
That`s -- look, of course, if you`re good at what you do, you should
be able to communicate it effectively, and an apology should be the last
thing on your mind. "Grateful to be there" should be the last thing on
your mind. But women for some reason, Chris, have this instinctive feeling
that they need to make everybody in the room feel comfortable and be
friendly with them.
And I actually advise against that mindset. You`ve got to go in there
and communicate effectively and authentically what your value is. And if
you don`t do that, don`t be surprised if you don`t get what you deserve.
MATTHEWS: What do you make of this Paycheck Fairness Act that`s out
there now? It`s a bit of a partisan issue, but it`s on both sides.
They`re fighting about it. And one of the provision of it -- we talked
about it before tonight -- is that it basically provides training for the -
- training, believe it or not -- for the very thing you`re talking about,
how to go to the boss, how to get away with asking for a raise, and most of
the time, at least, you want to get that raise, this is how to do it.
BRZEZINSKI: Yes, look, I think it`s fantastic. The Senate
Republicans have blocked it twice. I think one candidate just in the past
few hours called it a gimmick. It`s not a gimmick.
MATTHEWS: Thom Tillis down here.
BRZEZINSKI: Yes. It`s an important message. Women have a long way
to go in feeling that their value is, quite frankly, appreciated.
Corporations are beginning to really get the message that they need to be
on the forefront of this.
Quite frankly, I wrote a book while I was working at MSNBC about my
own struggles, and our company was transparent and forward thinking enough
and brave enough to be on the forefront of this conversation and have me
publish it with no changes at all.
And we need more of that. And we need to break the culture. This
president, you can say what you want about a lot of his policies, but on
this, he`s been right on. He`s started the White House Council on Women
and Girls and he`s been working on paycheck fairness since day one. And if
you look at political teams, good ones that really know what people want,
like I`d say, team Clinton -- interesting, they`re talking about it, too,
MATTHEWS: Let me ask you about when a young woman, or a girl,
actually, might want to start thinking like you talk, and you probably did
-- you learned it the hard way, in the college of hard knocks, at the
workplace. But what do we -- you notice those things about -- surveys
about who raises their hand in class, it`s more the boys than the girls.
They think they`ve got a better idea, where the girls are just as smart as
the boys, but they don`t think that, that (INAUDIBLE) smart.
How do you start working on that early on, that attitude?
BRZEZINSKI: Well, I mean, look, we`ve got to create an environment
where girls and women feel like they can raise their hand. And it starts
in the home, but also in the workplace. I mean, there are folks at the
White House -- I was there today talking about equal pay. I`m having
meetings on this issue, on things that are coming down the pike that I want
to know about, I`m interested in.
And I will tell you, the reason why the president issued the executive
order back in April is exactly because of what happened at Microsoft. By
the way, not at Microsoft, in Phoenix, at a women`s conference, if you can
believe that. This happened at a women`s conference, Chris!
MATTHEWS: Well, there`s nothing more effective than the attack from a
defensive position, and you`re displaying it. You`re simply demanding your
equal rights. It`s a powerful position to be in. Mika Brzezinski, it`s an
honor to have you on the program today. I`ll be watching you next week, as
I always do.
BRZEZINSKI: Thank you.
MATTHEWS: Equal pay, by the way, and women`s rights have become a
rallying cry for Democrats on the campaign trail. Yesterday, Hillary
Clinton hit the stump in Pennsylvania for gubernatorial candidate Tom Wolf.
Take a listen to Secretary Clinton.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: We have spent years now
clawing our way back out of the hole that was dug in 2008, but we have a
lot more to do if we want to unleash our full potential and make sure that
American families finally feel the rewards of recovery. And that`s
particularly true, in my opinion, for American women. Ask yourself, why do
women still get paid less than men for the same work?
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
CLINTON: Why, after American women have contributed so much to our
economy over the decades, do we still act as if it were 1955?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, David Corn`s with "Mother Jones" and Jay Newton-Small
is the congressional correspondent for "Time" magazine.
Jay, tell me about your reaction to this, just in a total political
(INAUDIBLE). We`re a month from an election now. Will this -- this noise
we`re hearing about this statement by this CEO at Microsoft, a sort of
sophisticated modern industry -- is this going to resonate with voting
JAY NEWTON-SMALL, "TIME" MAGAZINE: Well, it absolutely plays right
into the Democratic strategy here which, is to drive out unmarried women,
and their biggest sort of appeal to unmarried women is, as Hillary Clinton
just said, you`ve got to get equal pay. You`ve got to work on child care.
You`ve got to work on, you know, access to -- raise the minimum wage, which
affects women disproportionately.
Their entire economic agenda that the Democrats rolled out this cycle
was in order to appeal to unmarried women because if they can turn out that
one demographic at the same level that they turned out in 2012, they`d not
only, you know, keep the Senate, but they`d get back the House. Of course,
that`s really hard because unmarried women are notorious drop-off voters.
So it`s a real challenge for them.
MATTHEWS: They`re notorious what voters?
NEWTON-SMALL: Drop-off voters. So they tend not to vote in non-
MATTHEWS: Well, David, let me ask you about this vote. There`s a
Paycheck Fairness Act out there that, basically, as I just said with Mika
Brzezinski, actually trains women in the workplace how to ask for a raise.
Now, this obviously is a perception that`s real. Is it a voting issue?
Will it drive people to the polls?
DAVID CORN, "MOTHER JONES," MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think,
you know, that is the hope. That`s what the Democrats have worked on in
the some of the previous elections in the last couple of years, to use
these issues to get those women out and people who care about issues for
working families and -- and -- and women.
But you know, the Democrats are in a really deep hole now. There was
a Gallup poll that came out a couple days ago that showed the enthusiasm
gap between Democratic voters and Republican voters to be 48 percent to 30
percent, almost 20 percent difference. So if the Democrats can`t do this
on these economic issues for women, they can`t turn out some of the younger
voters, they can`t get those African-American and Hispanic voters to turn
out in large numbers, you know, they`re going to, you know, be up against a
pretty big tide.
So this is one way to try to deal with that, but they`re starting in a
very, very disadvantaged position.
MATTHEWS: I know. This strikes me as one of those 47 percent things.
It`s not supposed to go viral, but it has.
Anyway, here in North Carolina, Democratic senator Kay Hagan, who
we`re going to be covering all weekend, is slamming Republican challenger
Thom Tillis on the issue of equal pay. And this is the two candidates
battling it out during Tuesday night`s debate this week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. KAY HAGAN (D), NORTH CAROLINA: Speaker Tillis, North Carolina
women earn 82 cents on the dollar compared to their male counterparts. In
the General Assembly, you killed an equal pay bill, and you`ve said you
don`t support a proposed equal pay bill in Congress. Why don`t you support
these bills to ensure that women get equal pay for equal work?
THOM TILLIS (R), NORTH CAROLINA SENATE CANDIDATE: Well, Senator
Hagan, you probably know that there are laws on the books, that it`s
against the law to do something that any employer does, he should pay the
consequences. Let`s enforce the laws that are on the books, versus some of
the campaign gimmicks that are going to put more regulations on businesses
and make it even more difficult.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Did he step in it there, Jay, calling equal pay a gimmick?
NEWTON-SMALL: Oh, I mean, Republicans have said constantly that the
bill that the Democrats have on the floor of the Senate, which has now been
voted down twice -- they call it the equal -- the -- sorry, the Paycheck
Fairness Act -- is a gimmick. They say it`s just a sop to trial lawyers
because it`s going to increase litigation and women suing to get paid
But at the same time, I mean, he`s losing single women or unmarried
women in North Carolina by more than 30 points to Kay Hagan. Her entire
strength in that state is off of the strength of her -- with unmarried
women. And the last thing they want to hear is to call equal pay a
gimmick. You have to put it -- if you really believe that, then you have
to say it in a much more articulate and artful way.
MATTHEWS: Well, just so everybody learns something tonight, the
Paycheck Fairness Act would punish employers for retaliating against
workers who share wage information and would allow workers to sue for
punitive damage. In other words, a lot of problems (ph) is they don`t even
know that they`re getting underpaid. The Lily Ledbetter Act`s about a
woman who didn`t know she was underpaid for decades and finally found out.
Anyway, David Corn, thank you -- Jay Newton-Small -- I think this is a
hot issue for women who work outside and inside the home.
Coming up next, the outrage. How can it call itself the party of
Lincoln when it does everything it can to kill the black vote, kill it by
every means possible? Even with the courts on the side of the voter, more
than a dozen states are putting laws into effect this November to screw the
minority voter. Stick around. Right after this, we`ll tell you how this
ruthless thing is going on.
And this is HARDBALL, the place for politics.
MATTHEWS: Coming up in tonight`s program, we`ll have the hot story
from Kentucky. What was Alison Lundergan Grimes thinking when she dodged a
question about whether she had voted for President Obama? It`s coming up
later in the show with the roundtable.
MATTHEWS: Welcome back to HARDBALL. Voter suppression was dealt a
blow yesterday in two big states, Texas and Wisconsin. The Supreme Court
blocked Wisconsin from imposing its voter ID law, and in Texas, a federal
judge banned that state`s voter ID law, saying it amounted to an
unconstitutional poll tax.
Yet 2014 will be the first federal election with new voting
restrictions in place in 14 states. You see them here. And in states like
North Carolina, where the Senate contest between Kay Hagan and Thom Tillis
could decide control of the Senate itself, here`s what North Carolina
voters face this month -- this November.
No more same-day registration, reduced early voting, period, no more
registration for 16 and 17-year-olds, and no out-of-precinct voting, which
will make it much harder for college and university students, in
particular, to vote. North Carolina`s photo ID requirement goes into
effect in 2016.
Joining right now is U.S. Congressman Joaquin Castro of Texas, and a
Ryan Haywood -- Haygood, rather, of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
Congressman, tell me about what you think the impact in Texas is of
all this voter suppression effort by the Republicans?
REP. JOAQUIN CASTRO (D), TEXAS: Well, first of all, I think
yesterday`s ruling by Judge Ramos is a real victory for democracy because
this was a clear attempt by the Republican legislature to shave off at the
margins the number of people who vote in Texas.
And they did it not only by voter ID, but also by making it harder to
go in and register people to vote, setting up rules about mail-in ballots.
They`re looking at cutting early voting in the 2015 legislative session.
And so I`m glad to see that she made that ruling, and I hope that it`s
going to be upheld by the fifth circuit, and if necessary, by the Supreme
MATTHEWS: Do the Republicans that you get to talk to down there -- do
they make any bones about it? Do they pretend this is to prevent cheating?
They never seem to come up with examples of cheating that justify these
laws. Do they say that to you (INAUDIBLE) this is just to make it cleaner?
What do they say when you catch them?
CASTRO: Yes, I mean, I think that`s right, you know? People have
deluded themselves into believing that there was a real problem with voter
fraud. And then when they went to court, they scrambled very hard, but for
the most part were unable to find any kind of widespread voter fraud.
And the problem that we have in this country, Chris, is not that too
many people vote, it`s that not enough people vote. We have to get more
people to go out and vote, and these efforts have been very harmful.
MATTHEWS: Well, the federal judge in Texas who struck down the
state`s voter ID law wrote a scathing opinion that said, quote, "It creates
an unconstitutional burden on the right to vote. It has an impermissible
discriminatory effect against Hispanics and African-Americans. It was
imposed with an unconstitutional discriminatory purpose" -- discriminative
Let me go to Ryan on this. Ryan, it seems like the court there said
it`s not just bad law, it`s not only unfair, it`s purposely unfair.
RYAN HAYGOOD, NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE FUND: Sure, Chris. Thanks for
having me on the show.
And your point is very well taken. Judge Ramos`s opinion at 147 pages
is impressive not only because of its breadth and because of its depth but
because it reflects that she, as a fact-finder who was closest to the facts
and the evidence presented in this case, looked at the real impact that
Texas`s photo ID measure would have on real people facing real-life
challenges in Texas.
And she found, for example, through the testimony of Ms. Sammy Bates
(ph), a woman who was impoverished, who lives on a fixed income of about
$350 per month, that people like Ms. Bates have to make real-life decisions
about whether, for example, she could spend $42 to purchase a birth
certificate to vote in Texas or whether she`s have to use that money to
feed her family.
And in testimony before Judge Ramos, Ms. Bates testified that she
couldn`t eat a birth certificate. So she would need to use the $42 to feed
her family. And this, Chris, really is the real cold-blooded nature of
measures like Texas`s, these photo ID measures, which were purportedly
passed to prevent in-person voter fraud, when they actually prevent
eligible voters from casting their ballots.
And the evidence in this case show that there were more than 600,000
registered voters who were blocked from voting because of Texas` photo I.D.
measure. And Judge Ramos, on that basis, both because this measure was
determined to be an unconstitutional poll tax, and because it was enacted
with discriminatory intent, enjoined Texas from further using this photo
MATTHEWS: Let me ask you about it. I want to stay with you and go
back to the congressman, because here in North Carolina right now, I`m
going over to Chapel Hill right now, the great university over there where
I went to grad school.
And I`m wondering, what would be the good purpose in saying, you can`t
vote near campus? These are -- 90 percent of this university system are
from North Carolina, I believe. They go to school. They go to great
schools like UNC and N.C. State and North Carolina Central.
Why can`t they vote near campus? Why do they have to somehow find a
ride home to where they come from in North Carolina on Election Day, which
is a school day?
I think this is another important point you make, Chris, because I
think, in North Carolina, context matters greatly. In 2008, North Carolina
led the nation -- led the nation in terms of voter turnout. They had
actually increased their previous turnout by 10 percent.
And this happened largely because of programs like the early voting
period, by making voting accessible for students and by the Election Day
registration program. And following the Supreme Court`s devastating ruling
in the Shelby County case, the political winds changed in North Carolina.
And Texas -- sorry -- and North Carolina took aim at the very channels
through which voting had been made more accessible to young voters,
students, voters of color, and women.
And this has really had a striking impact on African-American voters
in particular. In 2012, African-Americans represented 40 percent of those
who used the Election Day registration program to cast their ballot, even
though black folks in the state are only 20 percent of the overall
So there`s a stark impact that`s reflected in the choices that North
Carolina has made to make voting more difficult for its citizens, when it
was having an opportunity to make voting more easily accessible for its
MATTHEWS: Congressman Castro, thanks for joining us.
And I just wonder, is this an attempt broadly by the Republican Party,
which has had a hard time recruiting people of color to its party, whether
Hispanic people or African-Americans or any group that is not white? Is
this an attempt to deal with the declining proportion of the country, of
the electoral base which is white by making it harder for people who are
not to vote? Is this what`s going on here?
CASTRO: Well, I think part of it is trying to shave off, you know, 2
or 3 or 4 percentage points of people that do vote and who tend to vote
And, Chris, you know how many elections that you can win if you can
shave off three or four points. And we should also note that, in 2011, the
Texas legislature also passed a redistricting plan that a federal court
also said intentionally, intentionally discriminated against minorities.
And so the 2011 session is historic in terms of the bad legislation that`s
come out of Texas. And it certainly was no accident.
MATTHEWS: That was Tom DeLay`s work, right?
CASTRO: Oh, absolutely. Tom DeLay spearheaded it. We had the re-
redistricting in 2003, my first session in the legislature, and they have
basically kept it up since then.
HAYGOOD: Chris, I would just add the final point on the North
Carolina case. It`s important for your viewers to recognize that the North
Carolina case is not yet over.
That case continues. There was a preliminary injunction that was
sought that ultimately wasn`t granted, but that case is being handled ably
by expert lawyers, and the Supreme Court`s ruling only impacts the November
elections in North Carolina, but that litigation continues beyond November.
MATTHEWS: OK. Thank you so much, Congressman Joaquin Castro of
Texas. Thank you. You`re a rising star, of course. Glad to have you on
And rising -- Ryan Haygood for doing great work for the NAACP.
Buddy Cianci, the twice convicted former mayor of Providence, Rhode
Island, wants his old job back. He`s coming here next and he`s doing well
in the polls.
And take a look at this. That`s President Obama making a rare
appearance with a Democratic candidate. The president made a surprise
visit, along with DCCC Chair Steve Israel, to the campaign headquarters of
Ted Lieu, who is running for Congress in the deep blue district in Los
Angeles, where the president still gets strong approval numbers.
This is HARDBALL, the place for politics.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUDDY CIANCI (I), PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND, MAYORAL CANDIDATE: With a
sense of humility, contrition and confidence, I announce to you my
candidacy for mayor of Providence.
QUESTION: You resigned twice as a felon. How do you convince people
that you can be trusted?
CIANCI: I am -- that`s up to them. I am the most vetted person
running for office probably in America. What you see is what you get.
QUESTION: But is that two strikes?
CIANCI: Well, you get three, don`t you, before you`re out?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: We`re back.
That was the legendary former six-term Mayor of Providence, Rhode
Island, Vincent Buddy Cianci, a convicted felon who is launching comeback
bid for his old job at the age of 73.
Cianci was elected mayor as a Republican in 1975 and served until
1984, when he was convicted of an assault in 1984. He was elected mayor
again in 1991, serving until 2002, when he resigned after his conviction
for racketeering conspiracy and sentenced to five years in prison.
Now Buddy Cianci, the prince of Providence, is seeking a seventh term
and could win.
He joins me now.
Mayor, thank you for joining me.
And I just want to say this. I want to give you a chance to say this
on national television. Have you changed? Did you know you did something
wrong before that you were guilty of and now you`re not going to do it
again? Tell me what should the voters think about you.
CIANCI: Well, let me tell you this, that obviously the system of
justice in this country is what it is.
I was convicted of one charge of conspiracy to commit racketeering,
which I -- RICO -- which I was found not guilty of.
Yes. I think, when you get older, you get a little wiser. I`m
certainly older. I hope I`m wiser. I think I have -- I have learned a lot
of lessons about myself and about really how to treat people. And so
that`s why I`m running again.
Look it, in America, you pay the price. And I paid dearly. I was in
jail for almost five years.
MATTHEWS: Yes, you did.
CIANCI: I came out. And I rebuilt my life. And the la says I can
run. And I think I have a vision for the city and I hope the people have
confidence in me to effectuate that vision.
MATTHEWS: Yes, it`s not a moral question by me. I always think of a
politician, and I respect all people that run for office, but if they have
paid a price, it`s over for me. I would go to dinner with you. I would
love to hang out with you.
MATTHEWS: The question is this. You`re a mixed bag. And I will say
that. You don`t have to say it.
You built that city up like nobody. I thought when you got in trouble
this last time, a fair judgment would be not to send you to prison, but
send you to Worcester, send to a place in this country that needs your
help, Worcester, Massachusetts...
MATTHEWS: ... and say, you got a hundred days to fix this city up,
and then you can leave, or some judgment which would be useful to society.
You have a gift for rebuilding. You have a gift for renaissance. You
built the downtown of Providence. There was never a downtown like you
build it. And yet you committed crimes.
Is there only one Buddy Cianci that can`t be retooled? Or does it all
come together in a package?
CIANCI: Well, I think you are -- you are -- you -- I am what I am.
But as I said before, you don`t make an omelet without breaking some
eggs. And have I made mistakes in life? Sure, I have. But, frankly, have
I changed? Yes, I have changed in many ways. And I think that that`s why
I`m leading in the polls, that people realize that, and they will express
support to me come November 4.
Look it, no one is perfect. I`m certainly not perfect. People make
mistakes in life, and I have. And all I can tell you is that, yes, I`m
sorry for the mistakes that I have made in life. But I hope I have learned
from them. I`m humbled by them. And, hopefully, I can use the mistakes
that I made and also use the things that I have learned over the years to
be a better person.
MATTHEWS: What do you think of the Republican Party? You were once
Gerald Ford -- President Gerald Ford`s favorite mayor. You gave the
MATTHEWS: ... at the `76 Republican National Convention.
MATTHEWS: Now you`re an independent. What`s changed in you or the
CIANCI: Well, I think the party`s changed a bit. I ran twice as a
Republican in this town, and that was like being the Ayatollah Khomeini at
the American Legion Convention back in 1974 and `78.
And the party -- I was more of a liberal or more of a center person
than the Republican Party was. In those days, we were a more moderate
party. When the party got to be a real conservative party or it got taken
over, I didn`t want to be part of that, and so I ran as an independent.
There`s no Republican way to clean and pick up snow, and there`s no
Democratic way to build a home for the elderly.
CIANCI: But there`s a right way to do it. John F. Kennedy once said
that, and he also said that there`s the right -- there`s no Republican way,
no Democratic way. There`s the right way.
We shouldn`t start blaming. We should accept responsibility for our
future and that journey that we`re going to take together. And I believe
that`s true. There`s no Republican way to pick up snow, and there`s no
Republican -- Democratic way to pick up garbage. I mean, it`s -- we`re in
it together. And we have to make it work together.
And, listen, I have got elected, Chris, six times as an independent.
I never won an election with just independent votes, of which there are a
lot of. I always had strong Democratic support.
MATTHEWS: And thank you, Mayor. We got to have dinner if you win
this thing. And you`re leading in the polls, Mayor Buddy Cianci up again
for a big fight.
Up next, the roundtable on income and equality and how Democrats hope
to use the issue for women to win this fight.
You`re watching HARDBALL, the place for politics.
PAGE HOPKINS, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: I`m Page Hopkins. And here`s
The death toll from the Ebola outbreak raging in Western Africa has
surpassed 4,000. More than 8,000 people are sick with the virus in Guinea,
Liberia, and Sierra Leone.
The 17-year-old girl shot in the head by the Taliban two years ago for
going to school has won the Nobel Peace Prize. Malala Yousafzai, now a
well-known author and activist, is the youngest recipient of the award
And Kmart says its payment data systems were breached. The intrusion
was detected yesterday -- and now we`re going to take you back to HARDBALL.
MATTHEWS: Welcome back to HARDBALL and time for the roundtable.
And they are going to be digging into the politics of equal pay for
Hillary Clinton spoke about it yesterday in Pennsylvania. Will it be
a big voting issue in 2016? Plus, voter suppression, it took a blow
yesterday in Texas and Wisconsin, yet new voting restrictions will be in
effect in 14 states in November.
Joining me right now as the roundtable members, former U.S.
Congressman Harold Ford, MSNBC.com political editor Beth Fouhy, and Ellis
Henican of "Newsday."
Congressman Ford, this issue -- you have run for office many times.
And this issue, it seems, is going to rouse a lot of women to the question
of not getting paid as much as the men, not being able to make the case for
it, and then being told by a hot shot Microsoft CEO, don`t ask, live with
HAROLD FORD (D), FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN: You got to hope that it was
a moment, just a bad judgment moment. He`s apologized, I know. And
normally I`m one that accepts apologies.
But I think it will certainly heighten the issue and heighten the
focus of the issue. Hillary Clinton obviously is very poised to make the
case. It will be interesting to see how Republicans rally around the
The interesting thing about the CEO of Microsoft was that he made
those comments in front of one of the senior members of his own board who
happened to be a woman, who said at the end of his answer, this is one of
the only things I disagree with you about.
Let`s hope that his comments don`t permeate the culture, do not
reflect the culture at Microsoft. And let`s hope it`s a teachable and
learning moment for him, and for that matter other CEOs, not only across
technology, but across all service sectors and spaces.
BETH FOUHY, SENIOR EDITOR, MSNBC.COM: Yes, you know what, Chris?
FOUHY: I was going to say that the equal pay issue is just one of the
many issues that Democrats are trying to rally women around.
It`s -- especially in 2014, but even in 2016, Democrats cannot win
elections without women, particularly younger single women who are most
affected by minimum wage and are most affected by the lack of equal pay.
So it`s a matter of gambling I think at this point that those women will
come out in larger numbers than they typically do in midterms to support
Democrats, because Democrats literally cannot win without them.
ELLIS HENICAN, "NEWSDAY": Yes.
And you know what? When you talk to smart Republican consultants
right now, they`re telling their candidates just shut up on the topic.
Every time you try to say something, it`s not going to come out right.
HENICAN: Maybe that advice needs to go to the corporate world as
well. Just -- just don`t talk about it.
FOUHY: And the CEO -- the fact that the Microsoft said what he said
is actually a real validation of this for Democrats, because they can say,
look, it`s not just a political issue. We`re not just trying to score
points against Republicans. This is something that is deeply ingrained in
the culture. A guy who is not even in politics is making the point so very
clearly that women are in a disadvantaged position when it comes to pay.
HENICAN: It`s funny that...
MATTHEWS: What did you make?
I mean, Congressman, you`re very gentle here. And I understand why
you would be, because you`re a nice guy. But it doesn`t seem like it was a
faux pas on the part of the CEO. He seemed to be a smart guy. I`m sure he
is a very smart guy. And he was seeming to make a case about gentility and
women. It seemed to be a gender comment.
It seemed to be that men can be feisty, pushy, obnoxious even about
their demands for pay, if they`re in a strong position, whereas women will
have a stronger position if they don`t act like that. That seemed to be a
gender distinction he was making. It wasn`t an accident of missed -- of
FORD: The thing I find curious, even his apology, again, which I
accept, I thought he would -- I would have been far more aggressive if I
were him in making the point that it was just an idiotic, stupid and
completely incorrect comment.
But, again, you know, I don`t know what was in his head. The
interviewer of him for that conference, it was a women`s conference, made
clear that she adores him, respects him, and what he`s been able to do with
the company and the culture of the company she`s pleased with, but he`ll
have to answer to the board, to his employees and ultimately have to answer
to shareholders and customers.
HENICAN: Yes, hold on a second, Harold, I mean, I know what`s in his
heart because it`s on his lips. It`s an old suppression, right? They say
the eyes are the window on the soul.
That`s not true anymore. It`s the microphone that`s the window on the
soul, right? You put that in front of somebody`s face. They start saying
stuff that they really mean.
The last cycle, we saw it from a lot of Republicans, you know, go back
to Todd Aiken and other people. You know, people really believe that
stuff, and despite whatever you put on Twitter trying to backpedal, there`s
a reason you said it in the first place.
FORD: But in fairness, Todd Aiken came back and said he meant when he
HENICAN: That`s even worse. I`ll give you that. That`s even worse.
BETH FOUHY, MSNBC.COM SENIOR EDITOR: And, Chris, this whole thing
underlines a point that came out, the White House put a big report on the
status of woman in 2011, said women had met or exceed the levels where men
are in many ways, in academics, law, medicine, so many places they made so
much progress. The place they have not made progress is in pay, the pay
differential is very real.
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: Let me ask you about you can start with
this, about this voter suppression issue.
MATTHEWS: I`m amazed because I thought there was still a touch of the
party of Lincoln in the Republican Party. But when I heard people from my
home state of Pennsylvania, the party leader up there, the legislative
leader, happily, giddily talking about how they were getting through voter
suppression laws, or they call them reform laws, that would cut down on the
Democratic vote, the minority vote.
Fourteen states, we found out tonight, are still going to be hampered
by, you can`t vote on campus. You have to go back to your hometown. You
can`t vote early -- all these things. You can`t have same-day voting,
registration. All these techniques to keep basically older, minority
people and sometimes students from voting.
FOUHY: Right. They may want to be the party of Lincoln, Republicans
do, but they also want to be the party of winning and they`re not going to
be the party of winning if these folks who are typically suppressed
actually vote, because as you rightly said, it`s usually minorities, it`s
usually older minority people, it`s students, as you say.
Republicans are having a very hard time winning with their candidates.
They`re having a very hard time winning with their issues. So what they`re
trying to do now is cut down on the number of voters who are going to
support Democratic candidates. They have very little else to go on.
HENICAN: Come on, it`s not a coincidence that every single case is
being pushed by Republican legislators, right? I mean, they know how these
votes turn out if they actually get cast. To me, that`s not the surprising
part. The sad and surprising part is that we still don`t really have from
the courts clear definitive language that says, hey, stop that, you can`t
make it so hard for people to vote.
Back in the `60s, in the civil rights era, at least we had a court
that was some kind of a clear beacon. I think we`re still waiting around
FORD: We ran into a lawyer, Chris, as we were waiting to go on from
the legal defense fund, I think it was on another show, shared that one of
the most unique characteristics of the decision that came down in the last
24 hours, was that a judge I believe in Texas cited that this was
intentional discrimination, which is the first time this has been cited in
one of these cases.
Hopefully, this has a cascading effect and can begin to cure this. I
think Beth said it best. Republicans don`t have a message, don`t have
candidates that can appeal to big parts of African-American, Latino
communities. So, what is their answer instead of trying to create the big
tent they purport to have? They want to shrink the tent by shrinking the
number of voters.
Shame on them going for Democrats and for that matter, moderate and
smart Republicans have a better chance of winning if they look at expanding
the tent and reaching out to all voters. I don`t understand -- for the
life of me, how any political figure, in any party, can argue for reducing,
restricting, constraining number of people that can vote and have that be
an answer for making our system better. Shame on anyone who supports these
And I`m embarrassed my home state of Tennessee would even support
anything that`s a travesty of this level.
MATTHEWS: OK. You folks are coming back. We got a big topic, it
could be a game-changer in Kentucky. Alison Lundergan Grimes showed how
hard it is for some red state Democrats to talk about President Obama. She
wouldn`t say if she voted for him. This is going to be a problem and that
video is coming here. It was a debate -- actually, it was an editorial
This is HARDBALL, the place for politics.
MATTHEWS: Senator Kay Hagan and Republican challenger Thom Tillis met
for their third and final debate here in North Carolina last night. Take a
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THOM TILLIS (R), NORTH CAROLINA SENATE CANDIDATE: When you miss more
than half of your committee meetings, when you sit on the Armed Services
Committee and you know that ISIS is the threat that it`s emerged to be, you
show up for work. Senator Hagan has missed more than half of those
meetings. We found out this week, two days ago, just after the debate,
that Senator Hagan put a cocktail fund-raiser on Park Avenue ahead of a
classified briefing where these thoughts were being discussed.
SEN. KAY HAGAN (D), NORTH CAROLINA: Speaker Tillis` hometown
newspaper has called on him to resign because of the number of days he
missed at the general assembly because he was out fund raising.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, down here in North Carolina this week, and I`ll be
talking to Senator Hagan about her tough re-election fight. Don`t miss our
field report on the tight North Carolina senator race, including my talk
with Senator Hagan. That`s coming up here on Monday on HARDBALL.
And we`ll be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALISON LUNDERGAN GRIMES (D), KENTUCKY SENATE CANDIDATE: I`m not
Barack Obama. I disagree with him on guns, coal, and the EPA.
And, Mitch, that`s not how you hold a gun.
I`m Alison Lundergan Grimes and I approved this message.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: We`re back with the roundtable -- Harold Ford, Beth Fouhy,
and Ellis Henican.
Anyway, Democratic candidate for the Senate in Kentucky, Alison
Lundergan Grimes, famously ran that ad to put some distance between herself
and President Obama, whose popularity in Grimes` home state of Kentucky is
near an all-time low.
But look at this headline from the "Louisville Courier-Journal" today.
In an interview yesterday with her editorial board, Grimes was pressed to
say whether she voted for President Obama in 2008 and 2012. She was very
hesitant. In fact, wouldn`t answer the question on the spot.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you vote for President Obama in 2008 and
GRIMES: You know, this election isn`t about the president. It`s
about making sure we put Kentuckians back to work.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you vote for him?
GRIMES: I was actually in `08 a delegate for Hillary Clinton and I
think that Kentuckians know I`m a Clinton Democrat through and through. I
respect the sanctity of the ballot box and I know that the members of this
editorial board do as well.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So, you`re not going to answer?
GRIMES: Again, I don`t think that the president is on the ballot, as
much as Mitch McConnell might want him to be. It`s my name and it`s going
to be me who`s holding him accountable for the failed decisions and votes
that he`s made against the people of Kentucky.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, "The Washington Post" blog "The Fix" described
Grimes` response as 40 painful seconds. And while her opponent Senate
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has maintained a slight edge in the polls,
the Cook Political Report considers that race a toss-up. In Real Clear
Politics average shows McConnell narrowly leading 46-43.
Let me ask you, Beth Fouhy, about this. It seems to me that this is
unacceptable. She`s going to have to, and the sooner the better, say how
FOUHY: Well, it also really seems like a rookie error. And it`s
shocking that she hasn`t been asked this question until now. Look, I don`t
see why she couldn`t have easily said -- I did, I voted for him because I
thought he was a better candidate than Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney is a
candidate for the wealthy and for the privilege -- and just go on with it
Nobody is going to be surprised that she voted for Barack Obama. And,
frankly, by distancing herself and being so awkward that way, she doesn`t
rally the base which she needs to get out of Kentucky, including African-
American voters who may not like the fact that she couldn`t even bring
herself to admit that she supported the guy.
MATTHEWS: Let me go to Congressman Ford for this issue, because he
ran for office.
How long can she get away? It seems to me that the Republican ad
makers are already working on this. And they`ll say, it took her 24 hours,
took her 48 hours, took her a week to say that she voted for Obama, because
the longer time she lets roll now, the more they`re going to use it as a
bigger powder keg against her.
FORD: Beth is right, she should have just said, yes, of course, I
did. There are things I disagree with him and my vote for him would not
dissuade me, I`m elected to the U.S. Senate here from Kentucky for standing
up to him and standing up to Republicans, for that matter, anybody, who
wants but to stand in a way of things happening for the right way in
You know, these are mistakes candidates to make and I`m hopeful that
my friend, Alison, will correct the record before the night is up.
HENICAN: Well, it`s cringe-inducing, right? Right here, we could
think of about 20 better answers. She`s not wrong to try and distance
herself. I mean, he`s not popular in the state. She doesn`t want to run
And Democrats, by the way, here we are, pretty late in the game, she`s
still doing respectably well. She really can win the thing. So, you know,
it`s just a stumble. You dust yourself off and try to move on.
FORD: But, Chris, when I ran in Tennessee, I got criticized for not
taking louder, more definitive stands on big, big social issues. You know,
if you`re going to invest in these campaigns in parts of the country, you
have to be respectful of these candidates.
Now, I`m not suggesting that Alison should have suggested she
supported Barack Obama. But I agree with that, she has run one heck of a
race and to have he majority leader who has spent tens if not almost a
hundred millions dollars of outside money and inside money coming to raise
against her, more power to her. She knows a little more about this state -
- lot more about it than I do, and I would imagine sitting around here and
sat here, but I do hope --
MATTHEWS: Let`s not be happy about this, but I want to go back to
this, Congressman. I want to go back to this, Beth, you , I don`t
understand this. I don`t understand the answer. I remember Ted Kennedy
was asked by Roger Mudd why do you want to be president? He should have
had an answer. He should have had an answer.
This is these things like Hillary Clinton and the Drexel University
thing when Tim Russert asked her about the illegal -- the driver`s licenses
in New York that Eliot Spitzer was giving to people who aren`t documented.
You ought to have these questions ready.
I don`t know how you -- didn`t she ever think about whether she voted
for Obama or not and what it meant politically?
MATTHEWS: I don`t want to condemn her because I don`t get it.
FOUHY: No, nor do I. And I would agree with Harold that she`s run an
amazing campaign and she`s really grown as a candidate, which is why this
rookie error is a bit surprising. It sounds like she sort of practiced how
to say I don`t agree with him. I don`t support him. She`s finding all
these verbs that she can apply to Barack Obama.
But the actual act of voting for him was not part of the part of the
dialogue that she had with her campaign staff about how do I answer this
question? So, it really did seem like she was caught completely off-guard.
Again, I`m going to say it again. I`m surprised she doesn`t have an answer
and I`m surprised she wasn`t asked the question earlier.
HENICAN: It`s just a personality, right? I mean, some people are
comfortable. She has not proven herself to be not real comfortable,
particularly when she gets in a situation that she`s not used to. She`ll
learn, but she`s still not totally there.
FORD: Just for the record, she`s only running three points behind
against the majority leader. So --
HENICAN: Fair enough.
MATTHEWS: She`s still on the running. I do think it`s something
every media trainer should tell every politician or candidate. First of
all, answer the question and then give your speech. The first thing you
got to do is answer the question --
HENICAN: And only give your speech once, only give it once. You
don`t have to say it five times.
MATTHEWS: Although, that`s too hard of a standard.
Anyway, thank you, Congressman Harold Ford, Jr. Thank you, Beth
Fouhy. And thank you, Ellis Henican.
We`ll be right back after this.
MATTHEWS: Let me finish tonight with this. You know, I spent a
couple of years in my life working as a Peace Corps volunteer in Africa. I
think all of us have become concerned with the precarious health situation
Let me tell you about a good cause on that front. Recently, I met
with Dr. Anthony Charles, a trauma surgeon at the University of North
Carolina-Chapel Hill. He directs the UNC Malawi Burn and Surgical
Initiative in that country. It treats over 2,000 patients a year where 70
percent of the patients are under the age of 10 and the halls of the open
air hospital are lined with mothers and their children waiting for care.
Serious burns are a high risk in Malawi because people heat their
homes and cook their food with an open flame out of necessity and the lack
of basic resources such as pain treatments and intravenous fluids and wound
dressings and the lack of health personnel most of all in sub-Sahara Africa
results an untold suffering and death, especially among children.
The UNC Project over there differs from other outreach programs in the
since that it empowers Malawians themselves for Malawi, to help their own
county, to go and to train a cadre of Malawian surgeons and clinical
officers to rise up and care for their own people through education and
clinical care. Please consider lending your support to uncmalawiburn.org.
That`s HARDBALL for now. Thanks for being us with.
"ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts right now.
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