All In With Chris Hayes, Wednesday, October 15th, 2014
Read the transcript from the Wednesday show
ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
October 15, 2014
Guest: Karen Bass, Kavitha Patel, RoseAnn DeMoro, Jonathan Cohn, John
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight on ALL IN --
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: What we`ve been doing here
today is reviewing exactly what we know about what`s happened in Dallas and
how we`re going to make sure that something like this is not repeated.
HAYES: The second nurse who treated Thomas Eric Duncan is diagnosed with
Ebola, just one day after flying on a commercial airline from Ohio to
TOM FRIEDEN, CDC DIRECTOR: She should not have traveled on a commercial
HAYES: The CDC is tracking down passengers, the president cancels a
campaign trip, and a national nurses union says hospitals are not prepared.
Then, after National Democrats pull funding in Kentucky, Hillary lends a
hand on the campaign trail.
Plus, he`s considered a 2016 presidential contender, so what happens if
Governor Scott Walker loses his re-election bid?
ALL IN starts right now.
HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
President Obama canceled his plans today and convened an emergency meeting
on Ebola, in the face of mounting evidence that the government`s response
to the crisis has been shoddy, haphazard and insufficient to keep Americans
safe. The second nurse to contract Ebola at a hospital in Dallas has just
touched down in Atlanta on the way to Emory University Hospital, which has
already successfully treated American aid workers who contracted Ebola in
West Africa without any infections among its staff.
The same cannot be said for Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, which
treated Thomas Eric Duncan, the Liberian man who succumbed to the virus
just over a week ago and where first Nina Pham and now, a second nurse
identified as Amber Joy Vinson, age 29, has tested positive for Ebola after
treating Duncan. Vinson reported to the Texas Presbyterian Hospital
yesterday with a low grade fever, just a few hours after arriving on a
flight from Cleveland, the previous evening.
According to health officials, Vinson boarded the plane with a temperature
of 99.5 degrees, which the CDC said was violation of CDC protocol.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
FRIEDEN: Because at that point, she was in a group of individuals known to
have exposure to Ebola, she should not have traveled on a commercial
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The CDC is now trying to track down all 132 passengers who were on
board that flight, Frontier Airlines Flight 1143, although they`re said to
be at a low risk for transmission. According to the airline, the patient
showed no signs of illness during the flight. The plane itself has been
CDC said Vinson had extensive contact with Duncan while he was producing
highly contagious bodily fluids, including vomit and diarrhea. And
according to an "A.P." report, medical records show she inserted catheters,
drew blood and directly handled the patient`s bodily fluids before his
death last week. A native of Akron, Vinson flew to Northeast Ohio a week
ago today to visit family and plan her wedding.
According to Ohio health officials, three of her relatives including her
mother are employees at Kent State University. And while Vinson didn`t
visit the campus during her stay, the school says her family members did.
They`ve been asked to remain off campus and self-monitor during the 21-day
And amid widespread questions about government`s ability to contain the
virus, President Obama cancelled a couple of campaign stops today to
address the crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: If we do these protocols properly, if we follow the steps and get
the information out, then the likelihood of widespread Ebola outbreaks in
this country are very, very low.
But I think what we`ve all learned over the last several weeks is that
folks here in this country and a lot of non-specialized hospitals and
clinics don`t have that much experience dealing with these issues and so,
we`re going to have to push out this information as aggressively as
possible and that`s the instructions that I provided to my team.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: This comes as Republicans, including House Speaker John Boehner,
are stepping up their calls from a visa ban from the affected West African
countries. The White House is facing questions over who is in charge of
Meanwhile, evidence is emerging of potentially significant protocol lapses
during Thomas Eric Duncan`s treatment, including a report that health care
workers in the hospital treating him did not wear protective gear for two
days before he officially tested positive for Ebola.
And while both a CDC response team and a pair of expert nurses from Emory
are in Dallas now to train hospital workers and assist with infection
control, nurses around the country are sounding the alarm that our nation`s
hospitals are woefully underprepared to respond to the crisis. We`ll have
more on that later.
Back in Dallas, officials have taken by now what become the familiar steps
of disinfecting Amber Vinson`s apartment and the areas around it, and
notifying her neighbors.
Texas Governor Rick Perry announced today that he`s cutting short a
prescheduled trip to Europe to return to the state tomorrow.
While Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins who is blaming the CDC for failing
to restrict travel for the affected health those -- says he`ll enact a
legal order to ban those workers from public transportation.
On Wall Street, U.S. airline stocks took a tumbled today amid renewed fears
that Ebola can be spread by air travel, just another reminder the longer
this goes on, the more people get agitated.
On October 5th, before the virus was transmitted here in the U.S., CDC
director said his agency was getting 800 calls a day from hospitals
reporting possible Ebola cases. That`s 800 false alarms per day.
Joining me now, NBC News correspondent Gabe Gutierrez who is outside Emory
University Hospital in Atlanta.
And, Gabe, my understanding is that Ms. Vinson has just arrived there. And
this hospital is one of a small handful of them where she`s on her way to
the hospital, a small handful that`s explicitly trained to deal with Ebola.
GABE GUTIERREZ, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Chris, that`s right. One of
four hospitals throughout the country.
The reason I`m looking over there is police have blocked off the street
here. They do have some experience with this. They transported three
Ebola patients to Emory University so far over the last few months.
As you see those live pictures right now, the ambulance is on the move.
The patient landed here in the Atlanta area just within the past few
minutes. There was little less than a two-hour flight from Dallas Love
And the patient, Amber Vinson, walked on to the transport plane, walked off
the transport plane on to that ambulance, and you see right there they`re
making their way here. We expect them in about 10 minutes or so.
Now, the isolation unit here at Emory, it currently can hold two people.
That`s what it`s set up for, but it can be reconfigured, officials here at
Emory say, to hold a maximum of three people. And they`ve had some
experience in this.
Dr. Kent Brantly, you may recall, was successfully treated here and
released. So was Nancy Writebol, another aid worker. She was successfully
treated and released.
Here at Emory, they are treating an unidentified third person that seems to
be doing better. That person just put out a statement this afternoon
saying that he hopes to be released in the next couple of days.
But, again, as you see the live pictures right now, that ambulance holding
29-year-old Amber Vinson is making -- she`s her way here to Emory
University Hospital. We expect her here in the next few minutes or so --
HAYES: Gabe Gutierrez in Atlanta, you`re seeing there live footage of the
ambulance carrying Amber Vinson who tested positive for Ebola early this
morning on her way to Emory Hospital in what looked almost like a strange,
bizarro world presidential motorcade has traffic is stopped in the Atlanta
area to allow that ambulance to go en route.
Joining me now, NBC News correspondent Craig Melvin, who is outside Texas
Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
And, Craig, if I`m the lawyer for Texas Presbyterian, it`s a pretty busy
day given what we are now learning about how this case was handled of
Thomas Eric Duncan.
CRAIG MELVIN, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: You know, and here`s the thing,
Chris, we heard today from the head of the CDC, I mean, there is a chance,
perhaps a good chance that we have not seen the last Ebola case come out of
this hospital. When you look at the two cases that have come out so far,
the fact that you`ve got dozens of folks who came into contact with Thomas
Eric Duncan, when you look at the fact that initially, there were no
protocols in place, and then when protocols were put in place there was
confusion over the protocols.
Then, we heard from the head of the CDC, I mean, he talked about these
health care workers who had skin exposed -- skin exposed when dealing with
an Ebola patient. Health care workers who had put on layers of protective
gear when, in fact, apparently, that sometimes makes it even more likely
that you are going to contract that disease.
HAYES: That`s right.
MELVIN: So, it`s -- you`re right. I mean, what has happened here, what is
happening here has raised lots of questions, questions that are going to
continue to be asked here over the next few days, months, weeks -- weeks as
HAYES: We should also note this. I mean, Amber Vinson was this morning
when Dr. Frieden talked to the press as the head of the CDC, Tom Frieden,
he said that she had breached protocol when getting on that plane with the
slightly elevated 99.5 fever. We`re now learning that she had actually
called the CDC because she was self-monitoring and had been given the green
This is now twice in a row, we have to note here, in which the initial
response of the CDC was to say that the protocol was breached in the case
of Ms. Pham and in the case of Ms. Vinson, and, in fact, it then later
turned out that the protocol wasn`t breached, necessarily, that either the
protocol was insufficiently explained or in this case, she had actually
checked with the CDC who apparently it appears told her to get on the
MELVIN: The CDC, in an attempt to try and explain it -- I mean, one could
argue the explanation itself is even more confusing, but in an attempt to
explain it, essentially said they have these workers, get a phone call,
they go to a Web site, and they look, 99.5, and they say, OK, well, yes,
it`s fine for you to fly. So, yes, that`s something that over the next few
days -- and we`ve already seen the CDC, they`ve come out and said they`re
going to clarify these protocols, but gosh, Chris, that looks bad.
HAYES: It certainly does. Craig Melvin down there in Texas, outside Texas
You can catch Craig`s show, "MSNBC LIVE", on Saturdays at 2:00 p.m.
Eastern, Sundays at 3:00 p.m. Eastern.
Joining me now, Congresswoman Karen Bass, Democrat from California. She
serves on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Global
Health. Before becoming an elected official, she worked as a physician
And, Congresswoman Bass, I feel like the bargain here is this -- CDC, the
government says don`t panic about this. I think the American people aren`t
generally panicking. I think people understand that this is a genuine
terrifying crisis in West Africa where it`s killed thousands. It is not in
the U.S. we have an incredible health infrastructure.
At the same time, part of that bargain is a display of competence,
trustworthiness on behalf of the people saying, "Don`t worry, we got this."
And as a member of Congress, are you satisfied that they have displayed
sufficient competence, whether the private hospital in Texas or it`s the
REP. KAREN BASS (D), CALIFORNIA: Well, in general, I think they have, but
there`s certainly clearly been mistakes. The mistakes that were made at
the hospital in Texas clearly have led to what we see with the two nurses,
and I`m concerned that there are going to be more.
I do think that there`s going to be additional cases, but I don`t think
that we will be facing an outbreak because of our strong health system in
general. But clearly, there were mistakes that were made on both parts,
CDC and a lot of mistakes on the part of the hospital in Texas.
HAYES: There`s also the question here of whether there`s sufficient
preparation across the nation`s 5,700-plus hospitals given the fact that
the outbreak still continues to expand in West Africa. We live in a time
of global travel. And it seems inevitable, just in terms of the numbers,
some other patient from West Africa`s going to walk into some emergency
room somewhere else in this country at a certain point.
BASS: Right. I mean, I think that`s absolutely right. Or somebody who
has come in contact with someone from the region, maybe not even from West
But you know what, I`m certain is happening in our hospitals around the
country and that is immediate in-service where people are learning. What -
- from what I read about what happened in Texas, they seemed as though they
went about the infectious disease control protocols in a normal manner, as
opposed to being hyper-vigilant and taking special care with Ebola.
But I am certainly hoping that the CDC is on video throughout the country
in hospitals, showing very specific procedures that are different than the
normal ways we handle infectious diseases in hospitals.
HAYES: Congresswoman Karen Bass, always a pleasure. Thank you.
Joining me now, Dr. Kavitha Patel, an internist at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
She attended the meeting Johns Hopkins had today about Ebola preparation
All right, Doctor, what is the plan when and if someone walks into the
emergency room at Johns Hopkins saying, "I`ve got a fever and I`m nauseous
and I was just in West Africa"?
DR. KAVITHA PATEL, INTERNIST: So, there`s an extensive set of plans, not
just for the hospital but also for the clinics, which is part of what we
were all oriented to. And actually, we started the orientation earlier in
the month with kind of specific protocols for how to take that patient, how
to identify one staff person to deal with that patient, immediately to put
them in isolation, where to put them in isolation and, Chris, even the
level of detail of how to clean, if that patient has any use of the
bathroom, which one could imagine they will, how to dispose, decontaminate
and kind of deal with any of the body fluids.
Remember, this is a virus that`s transmitted through body fluids and how to
handle that. I think something that was also important that Hopkins did
was also identify a standardized protocol in our clinics because some of
these patients don`t just show up to emergency rooms or the hospital doors,
they show up to a clinic where the front desk staff are now trained to ask
if they`ve visited any of these areas.
HAYES: Well, and to me the question here is, what you`ve just described,
is that being done everywhere? Again, this is not -- our issue here isn`t
that this is going to spread like wildfire, World War Z, et cetera. The
issue is just that this needs to be contained and contain through a very
specific set of protocols, and those protocols have to be distributed
across an entire health care system. And thus far, there is evidence that
is not working or happening.
PATEL: So, part of every hospital, even before all of this is like a
standard infectious disease protocol and what I think you just highlighted
it correctly with Representative Bass that it`s specific to Ebola and this
really kind of unique set of circumstances.
PATEL: What is not happening, she was talking about the CDC kind of being
on the phone with all the personnel or training. What`s happening is that
it`s very local. What we`re doing at one hospital, even though it`s under
one system, it`s unique to that one hospital. And I know that that`s
happening across the country, but interestingly enough, Chris, it`s nurses
because they come into contact with these patients hundreds to even
thousands of times a day.
PATEL: You`re not hearing about the doctors or the other personnel yet,
and that`s exactly why I think that even if there were a training that the
CDC did today, doing it every single day and reinforcing these mechanisms
HAYES: We`re going to be talking to the head of the nurses union in fact
in just a little bit. Dr. Kavitha Patel, thank you.
All right. It being an election year and, of course, Ebola is now a
partisan issue, all the Republican finger-pointing ahead.
And then, one of the most bizarre starts to a candidate debate I had ever
seen in one of the marquee gubernatorial races this midterm election. It
happened just over an hour ago.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My understanding is that Governor Scott will be coming
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Unimaginable.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Frank, have you ever seen anything like this?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I haven`t. This is remarkable over sort of a
trivial issue no matter what side you believe you are on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We`ll tell you what that trivial issue was and what went down in
HAYES: Political dogfight happening in Wisconsin, plus Hillary Clinton
hits the trail in Kentucky. Why does she seem to have more faith in Alison
Lundergan Grimes than the official party group that works to get Democrats
elected in the Senate? All that is ahead.
HAYES: All right. We`re watching the convoy taking Amber Joy Vinson, the
second nurse to contract Ebola at the hospital in Dallas, as it makes its
way to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta where she will be treated.
The other nurse who has contracted the disease is Pham. She`s still in
That`s two nurses who have gotten the disease after treating the one
patient in America who showed up in an American hospital.
And it`s led to nurses across the country increasingly fed up with the
nation`s Ebola response. Today, the nation`s largest nurses union has
written the president of the United States, asking him to use his executive
authority to, quote, "mandate uniform national standards and protocols that
all hospitals must follow to deal with Ebola."
The letter comes after the second nurse in the U.S., as I said, 29-year-old
Amber Vinson, tested positive for the disease.
National Nurses United which represents almost 200,000 nurses across the
country has been warning for almost a month that hospitals and frontline
health care workers, the people most exposed to the virus, were not
prepared. Right now, with the first two cases of Ebola contracted in the
U.S. being nurses, those warnings are proving to be pretty on the money.
Yesterday, a group read a statement from nurses not represented by the
union who said they work at Texas Health Presbyterian that describes a
hospital with almost no set protocols or preparations to handle the Duncan
case. The nurses who asked to remain anonymous for fear of losing their
jobs allege Duncan was left for several hours, not in isolation, in an area
where other patients were around. They said that nurses initially wore
generic lab gowns and three pairs of gloves to protect themselves while
treating Duncan. And when they finally were given protective gear and
expressed concerns about their necks being exposed, they were told to wrap
medical tape around their necks.
The story today in the "Dallas Morning News" seems to fall in line with at
least some parts of the nurses` account, revealing that workers, quote, "in
a hospital isolation unit didn`t wear protective hazardous-material suits
for two days until tests confirmed the Liberian man had Ebola."
All in all, if the allegations are true, it`s a pretty horrifying picture
of the hospital ill-prepared to protect its patients or its workers.
And joining me now RoseAnn DeMoro. She`s executive director of National
And, RoseAnn, you`re reaction to the news today that a second nurse has
contracted the disease?
ROSEANN DEMORO, NATIONAL NURSES UNITED: Completely predictable. That`s my
reaction. That`s the nurses` reactions across the country.
We`re saddened, heartily saddened, appalled. But we know it`s predictable,
because the numbers have been saying, as you just stated, that what`s
happening in the infrastructure of health care is basically a nonexistence
infectious disease control policy. We don`t have a health care system. We
don`t have policies in place.
And the dialogue`s happening, the narrative is happening on an individual
basis when the status quo that`s intact is just completely indefensible.
It puts nurses` lives in jeopardy. And I just heard you say that the
president said today that -- let me get this right -- that they want to
push out communications. Push out communications.
How about mandates? How about direction? How about control?
They have control of Medicare funding. That`s the power they have over
This isn`t OK to push out communications. It`s to demand. It`s to say
this is not acceptable. We want these protocols in place and we want them
in place now. Not yesterday, now.
We don`t have them yesterday. These nurses were exposed. Other nurses
will be exposed.
And we`re trying to quell public fear, not create fear. We`re trying to
say that everything that can be done is being done, that the nurses are
protected in order to take care of their patients. And that`s the way to
contain this in the United States.
This is one of the most lucrative industries in the United States. This is
a billion -- this is a billion dollar industry. We have a pharmaceutical
industry that`s essentially sacrificed cures for profits when they`re
making -- the last five years, they made almost $600 billion in profit, and
yet, they didn`t work on a cure for Ebola because it wasn`t profitable
I mean, the priorities of our country are outrageous. I would really -- I
appreciate -- you know, Chris, just one last thing. I appreciate the media
paying attention to the nurses and the nurses certainly do. We appreciate
the fact that you`ve given us a voice in terms of speaking.
But, honestly, we`ve got to go deeper. We`ve got to go deeper and say
there`s something fundamentally wrong with the overall direction of health
care in this country and globally.
HAYES: Let me ask you -- let me ask you this question. Do you have a
reaction to tom Frieden, a man who I have to say I respect a tremendous
amount, who has sort of incredible resume and record and has done really
amazing work. Do you have a reaction to him?
It seemed to me kind of casting the blame on these two individual health
care workers, both nurses, in the initial reaction to how they contracted
the disease. Do you feel that was fair? Do you feel that was justified?
DEMORO: I want to know who`s controlling Tom Frieden, first of all.
That`s the real answer to that question.
And then, secondly, we have an entire campaign where the nurses are
outraged. We have signs that say "don`t blame the nurses".
We picketed -- we had a press conference on Sunday immediately when they
blamed that poor, young nurse in Dallas who had no protocols. They said
she wasn`t following protocols. There were no protocols. That`s when I
When I heard from the nurses yesterday who called me from that Dallas
hospitals, I have to say -- I mean, I`ve been doing this for 30 years, and
I actually cried. Because what I heard broke my heart.
It just doesn`t have to be that way. That`s the thing. It doesn`t have to
be that way.
We need a health care system in this country that puts the priorities of
our health care workers first and the patients first, obviously, and
And I -- you may not want to talk about profits, but I would like the
dialogue to change to taking a look at what happened to this country. Why
don`t we value our health care workers? Not another nurse should be
sacrificed at this altar of profit. Not one more nurse. I mean, we are --
we`re furious and we`ll do everything that we can do.
I don`t want to hear talk about communications from the Obama
administration. And that`s not to say that we`re vilifying the Obama
administration or the CDC. The bipartisan basically collusion in terms of
not taking the responsibility for this country and its infrastructure for
health care is unconscionable. Both parties are responsible.
HAYES: RoseAnn DeMoro of National Nurses United -- thank you very much.
DEMORO: Thank you.
HAYES: You`re seeing there. That is the ambulance carrying the second
nurse who has contracted the disease, Amber Vinson, to Emory Hospital.
Final note here on the point that Ms. DeMoro just made, there`s a reason
that workers having a voice at work matter, and it`s not just wages and
it`s not just the dignity of a union or solidarity. Sometimes, workers
know better than their bosses. And if they don`t have enough power in a
workplace, say a hospital, that knowledge doesn`t go anywhere.
We`re seeing some of the consequences of not listening to people on the
frontline as this epidemic plays out and as you see one of those frontline
workers pull into that hospital now being treated for Ebola for going to
work and doing her job and treating a man she knew had a deadly
The politicization of Ebola, ahead.
HAYES: Ambulance carrying Amber Joy Vinson, the second nurse to contract
Ebola at a hospital in Dallas has just arrived at Emory University Hospital
in Atlanta where she`ll be receiving treatment.
There is new polling today showing how Americans are reacting to the
ongoing Ebola situation. NBC News/"Wall Street Journal" poll says a
majority of Americans think the U.S. is prepared for possible Ebola
outbreak, 61 percent of Democrats saying the U.S. is prepared.
A narrow majority even of Republicans, 52 percent saying the same, but when
it comes to Tea Party supporters, self-identified, almost 60 percent
believe the country is not prepared for a possible Ebola outbreak.
This comes after a wave of political attacks from conservatives and
Republicans against the White House`s handling of the situation. A few
days ago, Senator John McCain said the Obama administration should appoint
a czar to lead America`s response to Ebola.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: My constituents are not comforted. There
has to be more reassurance given to them. I would say that we don`t know
exactly who`s in charge. There has to be some kind of czar.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Senator McCain calling for Obama to appoint an Ebola czar is
interesting since he accused Obama has having more czars than the families
that ruled Russia for three centuries.
Republican New Hampshire Senate candidate, Scott Brown, spoke yesterday on
a local radio show talking about Ebola coming across the border.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCOTT BROWN, NEW HAMPSHIRE U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: With regard to the
potential outbreak, we have obviously great health care professionals and
facilities, who hopefully are capable of handling these.
With regard to your question on do we curtail flights, yes, and that`s one
of the reasons why I have been so adamant about closing our border because
if people are coming in from normal channels, can you imagine what they can
do through our porous border?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And there was Rand Paul early this month. He told Glenn Beck he
believes political correctness has put us all in danger from the disease.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: I think that it`s a real mistake to
underplay the danger of a worldwide pandemic. And I`ve been saying this --
I think I said this the last time I was on your show a couple weeks ago. I
said that I`m concerned that political correctness has caused us to
underplay, you know, the threat of Ebola.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Today House Speaker John Boehner called for a, quote, "temporary
ban on travel to the United States from countries afflicted with the Ebola
Texas Senator Ted Cruz called for the same thing yesterday calling it,
quote, "common sense." So far both the Obama administration and CDC
Director Thomas Frieden are opposed to such a ban because they and most
experts believe it could make the situation worse, not better.
But according to Fox News` medical contributor, Keith Ablow, there`s
another reason why the Obama administration won`t impose a travel ban.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEITH ABLOW, FOX NEWS: His affinities, his affiliations are with them.
Not us, that`s what people seem unwilling to accept. He`s their leader.
We don`t have a president who has the American people as his primary
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The story of the Ebola outbreak is front page news across the
country. As Jeremy Peters pointed out in "The Times" the other day playing
off feelings of anxiety is a powerful strategy for motivating the
Joining me now is Jonathan Cohn, editor of "The New Republic," where he has
been covering the politics of Ebola. Jonathan, there`s a huge amount of
literature in political science that show if you get people scared,
fearful, particularly of any kind of foreign invasion, whether that`s
disease, immigration, terrorists, they get more conservative. A pretty
well established thing in political science.
JONATHAN COHN, "THE NEW REPUBLIC": It is, actually, there`s quite a lot of
literature on that. There was a study earlier that crossed my desk making
that very point. And I`m sure Republican strategists are aware of this.
They`re -- you know, at first I think they were trying to be a little
They didn`t want to seem to be exploiting this situation. I think as time
goes, they`re happy maybe, some of them, to start exploiting the situation
a little bit. And just to be clear, I think there`s nothing wrong with
asking hard questions.
COHN: About how the administration is handling this. Your segments before
I think asked some very good questions. What is the CDC doing? Is the
White House taking the right steps? That`s fine. But some of those
segments you just played right now, I think we are starting to see the
predictable let`s take this, let`s use this.
And I imagine this is not the last time during this campaign cycle we`re
going to hear Ebola used against the White House and against the Democratic
HAYES: Well, I think to talk about like these legitimate questions, look,
I said this before, but it`s true, right? There`s a contract here. The
elites and the experts are -- ask us to trust them, and in turn they have
to perform competently.
And if there`s one thing we`ve seen in this benighted century so far, it`s
just tremendous amounts of incompetence at the top and tremendous amount of
trust repeating in kind. I find myself saying to folks, listen, these
folks know what they`re doing. Trust them.
I know Dr. Frieden. He`s got a great record. The fact of the matter is
they have not acted in a way so far that`s necessarily established the
trust. The politics all fall out of that fairly naturally.
COHN: They do. And this is what is tricky, I think, for Democrats, for
liberals, because you do want to ask those hard questions. I look at what
happened in that Texas hospital during the first two days. There was some
kind of breakdown.
It`s not clear to me where the breakdown was, but clearly for the first two
days when Duncan was in that hospital people taking care of him were not
using the proper gear. This second patient got on a plane when she wasn`t
supposed to. So that`s a breakdown.
So you want to ask those questions. I would like to think and I`ve seen
signs that the administration is saying, we need to fix this. We saw today
or yesterday the CDC announcing new steps, sending infection control
experts to hospitals and hopefully that is a sign they`re fixing the
So you want to ask that. At the same time, you have this opposition over
here that is happy to ask those questions and happy to sling anything else
that will stick before November. And frankly, it`s counterproductive
because this is complicated. There is uncertainty.
HAYES: And if we want to deal with this responsibly, we have to have a
kind of sensible, rational conversation.
HAYES: Also you can see the White House on foreign policy they have that
motto, don`t do stupid stuff. Sometimes politicians demand stupid stuff be
done and we can see that happening with Ebola very easily. Jonathan Cohn,
thank you very much.
Something happened on a debate stage in Florida tonight and involves a fan,
fan as in a wind making machine. It`s really, really precious. Stick
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have to stop the military, zero military budget,
close all the bases, stop the factories that build all that equipment and
ship it off to the Zionist regime so that it can defend itself against the
gigantic Gazan military.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The question was about reforming the department for
children and families. Mr. Peters?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Last night, we brought you some of the highlights from one of the
more bizarre debates this election cycle, courtesy of the state of Vermont,
proving how interesting politics can be when every candidate is allowed to
Tonight, just in the last hour, we got a reminder from the Florida
gubernatorial debate between Republican Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie
Crist that politics can be just as interesting when only the mainstream
candidates participate. It can be even more interesting when one of those
candidates refuses to participate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The two candidates who are invited to take part in this
debate right now are not stepping up on the stage. Ladies and gentlemen,
we have an extremely peculiar situation right now.
We have Governor Charlie Crist. Governor, Florida Governor Rick Scott, our
incumbent governor and the Republican candidate for governor is also in the
building. Governor Rick Scott?
We have been told that Governor Scott will not be participating in this
debate. Now, let me explain what this is all about. Governor Crist has
asked to have a fan, a small fan placed underneath his podium.
The rules of the debate that I was shown by the Scott campaign say that
there should be no fan. Somehow there is a fan there, and for that reason,
Ladies and Gentlemen, I am being told that Governor Scott will not join us
for this debate.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Governor Crist, do the rules of the debate say that
there should be no fan?
GOVERNOR CHARLIE CRIST: Not that I`m aware of.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So the rules that the Scott campaign just showed us
that says that no electronics can be used --
CRIST: Are we really going to debate about a fan or are we going to talk
about education and the environment and the future of our state? I mean,
This is not a platform for one candidate. We`re hoping that Governor Scott
will join us on the stage. And I`m told that Governor Scott will join us
on the stage. In all fairness to Governor Scott, I was shown a copy of the
rules that they showed me that said there would be no fans on the podium.
My understanding is that Governor Scott will be coming out?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not in my life, I would imagine.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Frank, have you ever seen anything like this?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I haven`t. This is remarkable over sort of a
trivial issue, no matter which side you believe you`re on.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ladies and Gentlemen, that has to be the most unique
beginning to any debate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t think we`ll forget it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not only in Florida, but I think anywhere in the
HAYES: Charlie Crist was on stage alone for 4 minutes before Governor Rick
Scott showed up. No debate on the fate of the fan although we`re
monitoring its already-created Twitter feed.
HAYES: It`s no secret that Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin has been
eyeing a 2016 presidential run, but that is going to be a lot harder to
pull off if he loses his gubernatorial re-election in three weeks in his
Of course, Walker has proven to be a political survivor before having
survived the recall election after having won the governorship in a blue
state. He`s now in a dogfight with a candidate who hasn`t exactly set the
political worlds on fire, Mary Burke, former executive at Trek Bicycle
Corporation and a former Wisconsin secretary of commerce.
The race is now neck and neck with Walker and Burke each garnering
47 percent of likely voters in the latest poll from Marquette Law School.
Just two weeks ago, Walker was leading Burke by five points.
Governor Walker is probably doing himself no favors when he creates a
headline about how the minimum wage doesn`t serve a purpose. I`m not going
to repeal it, but I don`t think it serves a purpose because we`re debating
then about what the lowest levels are at.
I want people to make, like I said the other night, two or three times
that. Joining us now to walk us through the dynamics of the race is
renowned Wisconsinologist, Washington correspondent for "The Nation" John
John, so what has happened -- do you think to tighten this race it looks?
I was sort of surprised because I thought, look, you know, blue state,
tough terrain, although he`s shown himself -- he`s got two elections in 2-
1/2 years. What`s happening to tighten this race up?
JOHN NICHOLS, "THE NATION": I think a lot of things have happened. One
was the previous poll may have been something of an outlier. It came at a
time when there was a lot of controversy about Mary Burke`s jobs plan. She
was being attacked a lot on it.
I think this poll probably captures where the race is at a little more
accurately. All the polls this summer have been relatively within the
margin of error. But in the last two weeks a very interesting thing has
happened in Wisconsin.
The issue of the minimum wage and the issue of a living wage have come
front and center. A group of workers asked Governor Walker to review
Wisconsin`s wages, and it`s under an old Wisconsin law, a hundred-year-old
law requires the governor to accept a complaint and then review.
If he determines that the wages are insufficient, he has the power to
convene a commission and raise them. Governor Walker came back from that
request, his administration, that $7.25 is a living wage and nobody
And so weirdly enough, that challenge by a couple of groups, raise
Wisconsin and Wisconsin jobs now as well as a lot of working class folks
who earn minimum wages, has really pushed that issue up front.
And the governor has not handled it well. He`s faced questions in debates
and from newspaper editorial boards, and he keeps sort of defaulting to
this position that he doesn`t seem to be much of a fan of a minimum wage
let alone a living wage.
HAYES: What`s fascinating about that is one of the underlying dynamics
structurally in these midterms the Democrats had an advantage on minimum
wage and a number of economic issues, but in the Washington-based races, in
the Senate races and the House races, it`s been very hard to kind of center
the campaign on that partly because Washington is very gridlocked and
people don`t think anything`s going to happen there.
But it sounds like what we`re seeing in Wisconsin, that those issues that
Democrats have strength on are the issues that are dominating the campaign
or at least coming to the forefront down the stretch.
NICHOLS: I think that`s exactly right. And Mary Burke is a newcomer to
statewide politics, there`s no doubt of that. I think a lot of people had
questions about how well she would do when things got intense.
What`s fascinating is that as this race has really tightened up, she turned
in what almost everyone agrees was a quite strong debate performance last
Friday night. She has another debate coming this Friday. Her ads have
focused like a laser beam on these economic issues.
They`ve talked about Governor Walker`s failure to keep 250,000 job creation
promise. They talked about the loss of jobs. They talked about how
Wisconsin has not kept up with neighboring states. Now when you layer on
this minimum wage debate, I think it changes the dynamic and helps Burke,
for one reason.
It`s not that everyone is obsessed with the minimum wage. But if you have
a governor who has a rough track record anyway suggesting that the minimum
wage is, you know, not that big a deal, I think it all starts to add up and
put pressure on these issues and raise them into the forefront.
HAYES: John Nichols, from "The Nation," thank you very much.
NICHOLS: Thank you.
HAYES: Hillary Clinton goes to Kentucky. What she was doing there, next.
HAYES: Today former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton campaigned for
Kentucky Senate candidate, Alison Lundergan Grimes, just one day after the
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee announced it was halting its own
advertising in the Senate race.
The DSCC official confirmed to "The Courier Journal," the group was off the
air in Kentucky beginning Tuesday and dispelled the notion that it was
determined the race can`t be won. We still believe the race is very
competitive, he said.
DSCC has now spent more than 2 million in Kentucky and continues to make
targeted investments in the ground game. Clinton is there in Kentucky in
the wake of Lundergan Grimes refusing to say that she voted for Barack
Obama in his two presidential elections while touting she was a Clinton
delegate in 2008. Also failing to acknowledge she was also actually an
Obama delegate in 2012.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: It is a chance to say no to
the guardians of gridlock and yes to government that actually delivers
results for working people the way your Democratic governor has here in
this state. It is a chance to say no to special privileges and insider
deals and yes to a fair shot for every Kentuckian.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now MSNBC political correspondent, Kasie Hunt, reporting
tonight from Louisville, Kentucky. Casey, Bill Clinton is the last
Democrat to win Kentucky in a presidential election. He`s been down there,
now Hillary Clinton. How did she go over there tonight?
KASIE HUNT, MSNBC POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: She went over very well and I
will say the person who showed up here was Candidate Clinton. She recalled
that several points in her speech when she was here during her own 2008
campaign. She won the primary here.
She recalled dipping a bottle of maker`s mark into that red wax that forms
the top of the bottle. And you know she kept it pretty safe. She talked
in broad strokes about democratic priorities, the minimum wage, breaking
the glass ceiling.
She didn`t once mention Senator McConnell`s name, possibly looking to
preserve what`s been a pretty long-standing relationship with Senator
McConnell. Kentucky, these are Clinton Democrats.
That`s something that Alison Grimes is saying, something that Hillary
Clinton said tonight. These are the people that both of them will need as
they look to the future.
HAYES: Also the question here is how much of a race this is. I`m a little
surprised. You know, DSCC they pulled out and are trying to do triage and
basically defend Democratic incumbents are putting more money into
Colorado, that`s not a surprising choice.
But it does seem to me that, look, you`ve got a Democratic governor, you`ve
got Grimes pulling up too in the recent poll, it does seem very much that
there`s still a race there.
HUNT: There is a race here to a certain extent, but the structural makeup
of the electorate has had Democrats privately saying for months that this
is just a really difficult place. There`s a lot of symbolism in beating
Mitch McConnell, and they really want to.
But are they going to trade beating Mitch McConnell for losing control of
the Senate. The ads here say no, we`ll focus on places where we need to
play defense, Colorado, potentially New Hampshire and places where the
offense might actually work better like in Georgia, where David Purdue, the
Republican there, has suddenly run into trouble over outsourcing.
HAYES: You know, it`s a testament, though, I think to McConnell`s status
in the state that this race is as close as it is given the fact that this
is the most powerful Republican in the entire country in a state that,
remember Barack Obama lost that state by 23 points. It shouldn`t really be
HUNT: Well, you know, state politics and federal politics tend to be
really different here in Kentucky. I think what you`re referring to really
is how deeply unpopular Senator McConnell is. And that`s sort of been the
challenge for him, is to overcome his own unpopularity while still managing
to sort of capitalize on the conservative nature of the state.
You know, the president is so unpopular here that, obviously, for him it`s
a challenge, it`s an attempt to make this, you know, him running against
President Obama, in coal country, out in -- yes, go ahead, I`m sorry.
HAYES: We`ve seen that strategy in Kentucky and Arkansas particularly in
which the president`s poll numbers are vastly upside down and both
candidates there, Tom Cotton in Arkansas and McConnell in Kentucky are
basically running against Barack Obama despite the fact he is not on the
ballot. Kasie Hunt, thank you very much.
All right, that is ALL IN for this evening. "THE RACHEL MADDOW" show
starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC ANCHOR: Good evening, Chris. Thanks, my friend.
Thank you at home for joining us this hour.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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