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PoliticsNation, Friday, July 17th, 2015

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Show: POLITICS NATION
Date: July 17, 2015
Guest: Jonathan Capehart; Erroll Southers, Rodney Ellis, Angela Rye, Will
Pierce

REV. AL SHARPTON, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on "Politics Nation," breaking news
from the death of Sandra Bland, a trooper involved in the case is put on
administrative duty as activists march for answers.

Also, was the Tennessee gunman inspired by ISIS? New questions tonight as
people gather to mourn the victims.

And making a splash. How Donald Trump`s belly flop into the GOP field has
them running scared, and how they plan to hit back.

Welcome to "Politics Nation."

We start with that amazing cover of "the New Yorker" magazine. They say a
picture`s worth a thousand words. This one may be worth 10 billion words
or should I say dollars? A shirtless Donald Trump belly flopping off a
diving board. He`s taking a big leap into 2016 waters and look what`s
happening below.

There`s Marco Rubio who normally likes water, running away. Rand Paul
looks completely stunned. Governor Christie is looking up at Trump.
They`re scared because Donald Trump is for real.

His finance forum is in, he`s stumping in New Hampshire, and oh, by the
way, he`s number one in the polls. He`s leading the GOP field in a new FOX
poll. Just like he`s leading the latest "USA Today" poll and leading the
latest economist poll.

Folks, Trump`s leap is real, and he`s picking fights with all of them
including John McCain who accused Trump of firing up the crazies. Trump
fired back with an insult tweeting that he, quote, "graduated last in his
class at Annapolis, dummy." And today. Trump kept at it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It was an unbelievable day, and
they weren`t crazies. They were great Americans. I know crazies, believe
me. When he called them crazies, I think he will lose in the primary. If
the right person runs against him, they`ll win. He`s not very popular
there anyway.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Rick Perry tried taking on Trump saying he was offering
nonsense. And Trump fired back tweeting, Governor Perry failed on the
border. He should be forced to take an IQ test before being allowed to
enter the GOP debate.

And then there`s that other guy looking worried at Trump`s jump. That`s
Jeb Bush holding on to the railing for dear life. And Trump has been
hitting Bush harder than he is about to hit that water.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Jeb Bush will never take us to the Promised Land. He doesn`t have
it. Jeb will be very poor as a president. No energy.

Jeb Bush couldn`t answer a simple question on Iraq. Was Iraq a good thing
or bad thing? Took him five days to get the answer out and get the answer
right.

I mean, can you imagine I`m dealing with Bush. I mean, if I don`t win that
one, I think I`ll just quit.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: It`s been a nonstop barrage of ridicule. And now some like
Christie, Governor Chris Christie, saying it`s starting to get to Bush.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It`s pretty obvious to me
that, you know, Donald Trump has gotten inside Jeb`s head or under his skin
if he`s talking that much about it and not about the issues that we really
need to be talking about in this country.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So yes, Trump is coming into that water, and it doesn`t look
like he`s getting out any time soon.

Let`s bring in MSNBC`s Abby Huntsman and "Washington Post`s" Jonathan
Capehart. Thank you both for joining me here tonight.

(CROSSTALK)

SHARPTON: Well, Abby, it`s a crowded pool. And you have the picture on
"New Yorker" magazine cover, Donald Trump jumping in.

ABBY HUNTSMAN, MSNBC HOST, THE CYCLE: That photo is unreal.

SHARPTON: A big belly jump.

HUNTSMAN: Belly flop.

SHARPTON: Belly flop would be the right term.

HUNTSMAN: It is an unbelievable photo. And here we thought Chris Christie
was going to be the bulldog in this race coming in and just saying
ridiculous things and having that strong personality that he has. And I
think Donald Trump has surprised everyone, including the media. We`re all
kind of watching this and saying, wow, he`s still in this thing. And he`s
probably surprised. And I didn`t realize I was going to do as well as I
have.

You look at the polls and how well he is doing. And I do think there is
something about him speaking his mind. And you look at what the American
people have agreed on, which is not much over the past few years, and
that`s a frustration in Washington. They don`t trust their elected
officials. Donald Trump is not a politician. He`s someone who says it
like it is. You don`t have to agree with him, I don`t have to agree with
him on a number of things. But I do think the folks that are out there
supporting him feel that there`s a freshness about Donald Trump that he
just as going to say it and that makes them. And also everyone in the
media continues to talk about it and hit on Trump, it makes them all the
more want to coalesce around this guy and say we are going to keep fighting
for him.

SHARPTON: I don`t know if he tells it like it is or tells it like he sees
it.

And I think that, Jonathan, that the magic of Trump may be he is
authentically inauthentic. Everybody knows that he says whatever, and
that`s his authenticity. He`s the -- he`ll say anything and everything.

JONATHAN CAPEHART, WASHINGTON POST: Right, he`ll say anything. He will
say anything that benefits him. That benefits Donald Trump.

SHARPTON: Authentically.

CAPEHART: Authentically inauthentic. He says it like it is. But here`s
what`s so troubling. He says things that are so impolitic, so, in some
cases, hateful, so, in some cases, racist, that he`s gaining support. And
that says a lot about where the Republican Party is today, where the base
of the Republican primary voter is today.

And if the Republican party, once again, if they`re going to move out of
being a regional reactionary party and going back to being a national party
that actually wins presidential races, they can`t be in a bear hug with
Donald Trump. They need to be in a bear hug with the other people in that
"New Yorker" cover who are quivering in fear of the belly flopping Donald
Trump.

SHARPTON: But, Abby, he`s not just going after Jeb Bush. He`s going after
others as well. Look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Jeb Bush will never produce a job in his life. Forget it. You`re
kidding yourself if you think he will. Can you imagine him negotiating
with China?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: What about Marco Rubio?

TRUMP: I think he`s highly overrated.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: Rick Perry?

TRUMP: Well, I don`t want to be nasty to him. Really he failed at the
border. He failed totally. The governor of Texas. Totally failed at the
border.

He`s got, you know, a hurdle that nobody else seems to have at this moment.
It`s a herding and somebody could certainly look at it very seriously. He
was born in Canada.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Now, let`s deal with this seriously for a minute. The
candidate`s under attack by Trump leading in the polls, don`t they have the
dilemma of do they fight him or do they ignore him? I mean, is that not
the dilemma they are in?

HUNTSMAN: And it (INAUDIBLE). I think from the beginning, there was a
sense of he is not going to last very long. Let`s just sort of avoid
talking about Donald Trump or responding to him when he says insulting
things. And now, I do think they`re left without a choice. I mean, you
have the debate coming up in just a few weeks. That is going to be
fascinating to watch because someone is going to have to stand up to him
whether that`s Chris Christie, whether that is Jeb Bush.

I do find it fascinating that Ted Cruz has supported him and has stood
behind him on his comments, because if anything, he`s direct competition to
a Ted Cruz. I mean, they`re going after the same type of voters here. The
party, as you are saying, is at a reflection point. Where do they want to
go from here? Is it someone like a Donald Trump or they are going to go
with someone like --?

SHARPTON: But here`s the problem, Jonathan. When you look at what he`s
saying, like he`s saying Mexicans are -- they`re sending rapists over here.
And then you look at a poll where they are polling that 70 percent of
Republicans say that he`s basically right, I mean, what do you make of
this?

CAPEHART: Well, that gets to the point I was making in my earlier answer,
that this is where the party is. And if that`s where the party is, well,
good luck getting Latino voters, which, you know, the next nominee is going
to need about 40 percent of the Latino vote in order to win the presidency
and Mitt Romney got 27 percent. So good luck with that.

And to your Ted Cruz point, Ted Cruz is latching on to Donald Trump because
I think Senator Cruz has made the calculation that Senator Cruz is the
long-termer in this, Donald Trump is short-termer. And so, if you will
hang on to him, when Donald Trump drops out, you are the natural
beneficiary of those people.

SHARPTON: If you don`t drown in the pool after the belly flop.

CAPEHART: Right.

SHARPTON: But Abby, you know that he`s a sound bite machine. There`s no
question about it.

HUNTSMAN: I don`t know where it comes from because I could not think of
those responses to sound bites the way he does.

SHARPTON: He`s a sound bite machine and he`s entertaining, but listen to
what people say. In New Hampshire, you talk to people on why they like
Donald Trump.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: First of all, when I heard his comment about
immigration, I said this guy is talking what everybody thinks. This guy
just says it the way it is.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He has a lot of money, and he doesn`t have to pay
anybody for anything that he wants. Any vote that he or is going to put
through, he`ll be just great.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I came out because I believe in his message that he`s
going to make it great. And the thing is he`s lived the American dream
twice. He built an empire, it went bankrupt or whatever and then he built
it back again.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So this is what Republican voters are saying that went out in
New Hampshire. How do you, if you`re running against him in the primaries
-- Republican primaries, how do you deal with those feelings?

HUNTSMAN: Well, this is sort of what I was saying earlier. The folks that
are supporting him are loving the fact that he`s not a politician. That he
is saying what is on his mind.

I spent a good chunk of time in New Hampshire last go-around of primaries.
And I will tell you, there was a lot of anger from the primary voters at
this point about government, about President Obama. And I think that anger
has only continued to build with these primary voters over the past few
years. So that`s why they`re coalescing around him.

If you`re running against him, if you are a Jeb Bush or Chris Christie,
Chris Christie is only campaigning in New Hampshire. So you`ve got to be
able to worry when Donald Trump is leading the polls and not really
spending any money on advertising.

SHARPTON: Why does he need advertising?

CAPEHART: I know. Because right here we`re talking about him. Everybody
is talking about him.

SHARPTON: But he`s number one in the polls. You can`t ignore it.

CAPEHART: No, you can`t ignore him. But I do think at some point the GOP,
the grown-ups in the GOP are going to have to do something not just about
Donald Trump, but about the primary voters and what their claim to him
means for the party.

They know this because of the GOP autopsy that was done back about the 2012
election. They know what their problems are Mitt -- I`m sorry, Donald
Trump magnifies those problems and they haven`t done anything to mitigate
them.

SHARPTON: Well, the problem is when all the grown-ups in the pool are not
good swimmers themselves.

Abby Huntsman and Jonathan Capehart, thank you for your time tonight.

CAPEHART: Thanks, Rev.

SHARPTON: Have a great weekend.

Don`t forget to catch Abby on "the Cycle" weekdays at 3:00 p.m. eastern
right here on MSNBC.

Coming up, breaking news on the jail death of Sandra Bland. A trooper
involved in the case is put on administrative duty as activists march for
answers. We`re live in Texas.

And tonight who is the Texas massacre shooter? We`re learning more about
his travel in the Middle East.

And you`ve heard about the Warren effect. What about the Biden effect?
New buzz about the vice president and what it says about the Democratic
field.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Tonight we`re learning more about the four marines who were
killed in that shooting rampage in Tennessee. Gunnery sergeant Thomas
Sullivan won a purple heart during two tours of duty in Iraq. Staff
sergeant David Wyatt served one tour in Afghanistan and two tours in Iraq.
Sergeant Carson Holmquist (ph) was deployed to Afghanistan from 2013 to
2014. And 21-year-old lance corporal Skip Wells was the youngest victim of
yesterday`s tragedy. He joined the marines just last year. Our thoughts
and prayers are with all of their families tonight.

Coming up, new details on the gunman and new debate about why some attacks
are considered terror and some aren`t.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL KILLIAM, U.S. ATTORNEY, DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE: The active shooter
situation is being treated as a terrorism investigation. It is being led
by the FBI`s joint terrorism task force, and we will continue to
investigate it as an act of terrorism until the proof shows us otherwise.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Officials today talking about the deadly shooting in Tennessee
that left four marines dead. The head of homeland security committee said
he thought the attack was inspired by ISIS.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MIKE MCCAUL, CHAIRMAN, HOMELAND SECURITY COMMITTEE: My judgment and
any experience is that this was an ISIS inspired attack. And it has been
opened as a terrorism investigation by the FBI, which is a very significant
event in this case.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Authorities are now investigating the gunman`s travel in the
Middle East including one trip to Jordan and a possible visit to Yemen.
They say he spent several months in the region. His electronic devices
have been sent to the FBI crime lab in Virginia for analysis. And
investigators are looking into his past including a brief career as a mixed
martial arts fighter and a stop for drunk driving back in April.

Joining me now is Dr. Erroll Southers, a terrorism expert and former FBI
agent and author of "Homegrown Violent Extremism." Thank you for being
here tonight.

DR. ERROLL SOUTHERS, TERRORISM EXPERT: Thank you, Reverend. Pleasure to
be here.

SHARPTON: First, what`s your reaction to the homeland security chairman
saying this attack was inspired by ISIS?

SOUTHERS: Well, I think it`s always challenging when a speculation gets
ahead of the facts. As of yesterday`s shooting, the only thing that we
knew for sure was the fact that we had an individual with an Arabic-
sounding last name, perhaps a Muslim, and had attacked several government
locations -- military locations, and that in and of itself was certainly
cause to rise to a suspected act of terrorism because of the pronouncements
made by ISIS to attack government locations and because of it being the
last day of Ramadan. But again, no specificity to suggest that it was ISIS
inspired at that time nor any that I know of as of this moment.

SHARPTON: Now, there`s a lot of discussion on the difference between how
this case has been described and how people talked about the massacre in
Charleston. I want to play you some sound from the very first press
conferences following both tragedies. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are conducting this as an act of domestic terrorism.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We will treat this as a terrorism investigation until
it can be determined that it was not.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do believe this was a hate crime. It will be
investigated as a hate crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So how do officials decide whether they`re investigating
terrorism or not?

SOUTHERS: Well, Reverend, you know, terrorism is a term that has typically
been used over the years as it related to state-sponsored groups. But in a
more contemporary sense we`re using terrorism to define or attach to
individuals or nongovernmental groups.

There are three things we really need to think about when we think about
terrorism. We need to think about the threat or the use of violence. We
need to look at whether the targets of those violent acts are civilians.
And then we need to determine whether or not a political objective was met.

So, in the South Carolina shooting, we had a whole list of items readily
available, unfortunately, when that shooting occurred that would suggest it
was an act of terrorism. We had a manifesto by the suspect, we had
connectivity to websites, supremacist websites, we have statements made to
the victims who were in the church at the time and the pronouncement that
he wanted a race war to start.

So it seems to me that in that individual instance, we had enough to start
with a terrorism investigation perhaps even before Mr. Roof was even
apprehended.

SHARPTON: You agree when former attorney general Eric Holder talked to the
"Huffington Post" about Charleston. I want to read how we define terror,
he said.

We have a young man who apparently becomes radicalized because of an
incident and becomes more radicalized as a result of what he sees on the
Internet, then goes and does something that by his own words apparently is
political/violent act with a different set of circumstances than if you had
dialed in religion there, Islam. That would have been called an act of
terror.

I mean, you literally wrote the book, you did, on homegrown violent
extremism. Do you see any difference between the Charleston shooter and
the Tennessee shooter?

SOUTHERS: I see no difference at all. In fat, as I mentioned previously,
I see more evidence to initial gate a terrorism investigation in Charleston
at least as quickly as they did in Chattanooga.

Terrorist actions strive for specific ideological goals or objectives. And
Dylann Roof had goals and objectives spelled out both physically and
verbally when he was in the church that day. So I would think that I would
have to agree with former attorney general Holder that, in fact, a
terrorism investigation was warranted in Charleston at the onset.

SHARPTON: I have to take note that African studies Professor William
Jelani Cobb, he points out the first anti-terrorism law in U.S. history was
the Klan control act. So we have a lot to look into here. I`m sure we
will continue the discussion.

Dr. Erroll Southers, thank you for your time tonight. Have a good weekend.

SOUTHERS: Thank you, Reverend.

SHARPTON: Coming up next, breaking news in the jail death of Sandra Bland.
A trooper is put on administrative leave. We`ll go live to Texas.

And later, President Obama meets an inspirational woman in the oval office
today. The country`s oldest living veteran.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We`re very, very proud of
them. That`s why we`ve got to make sure we do right by them, all right?
So it`s a great honor to have her here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: But first, Scott Walker`s taking a stroll down memory lane
straight into tonight`s gotcha.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Governor Scott Walker is officially running for president, but
he`s starting off with a walk down memory lane. He brought TV cameras with
him to his old stomping grounds. The McDonald`s where he worked as a
teenager. But it was striking to see him there since he`s so opposed to
raising the wages for the very workers he`s using for political props.
Here`s how he justifies his position.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. SCOTT WALKER (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I started out just like
Paul Ryan did down the road from me working at McDonald`s. Jobs that
involved the minimum wage are for young people starting out in the
workforce.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Governor Walker, the minimum wage isn`t just for young people.
The average age of a minimum wage employee is 35 years old. Twenty seven
percent of people earning the minimum wage are parents and 46 percent have
some college experience. Plus, many of those workers you visited don`t
exactly look 15 or 16 years old, at least not yet to my eyes. So what else
does Walker think about the minimum wage?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WALKER: I believe the state should be focused on helping people create
jobs that are much greater than the minimum wage. I was paid the minimum
wage when I worked at McDonald`s as a kid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Sure, he wasn`t supporting a family. But that`s not true for
everyone. A full-time minimum wage worker in Walker`s own state earns just
over $15,000 per year. That`s $4,000 below the poverty line for a family
of three. Any thoughts on the minimum wage you`d like to share, governor?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WALKER: The left claims they`re for American workers and they just got
really lame ideas, things like the minimum wage.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Lame ideas like the minimum wage? It`s not lame, governor.
It`s life changing. Nice try but we gotcha.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Breaking news. Authorities say they`ll release key video from
the case that`s getting national attention. A woman found dead inside a
Texas jail cell. Sandra Bland was found hanging inside her cell Monday
after police say she was pulled over for failure to use a turn signal. The
D.A. says, they`ll release dash cam video that shows the stop and her
arrest. They`ll also release surveillance video of the jail hallway.
There is none from inside the cell itself. The D.A. promised transparency
as he talked about the videos.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ELTON MATHIS, WALLER COUNTY, TEXAS DISTRICT ATTORNEY: It is not yet been
made public and that`s for a very good reason. We have asked the FBI to
thoroughly examine the videos to confirm that they`ve not been tampered
with or changed in any way before they are made public.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: The video could shed new light on what plays out in the cell
phone footage. Bland`s family believes it shows her arrest, but NBC News
has not verified that claim. This video doesn`t show what led up to her
arrest when authorities say she became argumentative, they charged her with
assaulting a public servant. And tonight a trooper has been put on
administrative leave for violating policy during her traffic stop. All
this comes as protesters march from the county jail to the courthouse
demanding answers.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What happened?

(Protesters): To Sandra Bland.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What happened?

(Protesters): To Sandra Bland.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

The medical examiner ruled Bland`s death a suicide by hanging. The FBI and
Texas rangers have launched a joint investigation into what happened.

MSNBC`s Trymaine Lee is live outside the county jail where Sandra died.
Also with me is Texas State Senator Rodney Ellis who is calling for a full
investigation of that jail. Thank you both for being here.

STATE SEN. RODNEY ELLIS (D), TEXAS: Thank you, Reverend.

SHARPTON: So Trymaine, a trooper has been put on administrative duty. Is
that part of what people down there are asking for?

TRYMAINE LEE, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: Rev, I`ve been talking to protesters
and people have been marching in support of Sandra Bland all day. And they
want a few things. They want transparency in their investigation. They
want answers as to how this young woman with such a promising future ended
up dead with apparently a trash bag wrapped around her throat, but
ultimately, sir, they want the truth. And it`s almost cliche at this point
so often we have these incidents in the community rally and they just want
transparency and truth. When I spoke to people who knew Sandra and they
say that she was starting a new chapter in her life and they were so
excited. I want you to take a listen to this, people I spoke to earlier,
and this is what they had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That`s just not who she was. You know, I never would
think that she would do something like that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She was passionate about the community. She was
involved with the community. And she really cared about what happened to
people and what went on in the community in which she lived.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEE: Rev, that`s why it`s so inexplicable for so many people. You know,
she went to Prairie View A&M not far from here. She was returning here in
somewhat of a homecoming to take a job. And she was so happy and she
called her family and was almost giddy with excitement. I spoke with one
protester who said, you know, how do you go from cloud nine one minute and
the next minute you`re killing yourself inside a county jail? That`s what
doesn`t make sense and that`s what people want answers to, Rev.

SHARPTON: Senator, what are your concerns about this case?

ELLIS: Well, first of all, my condolences to the family. I mean, just
tragic. Reverend, as you know, I have two daughters at New York.

SHARPTON: Yes.

ELLIS: I`d just be so heartbroken for a child to get a stop and end up
dead. My biggest concern is, getting to the truth, having transparency,
but then add to that, what reforms can come out of this unfortunate
tragedy? I`m looking at issues like how common is it to stop someone for
not signaling when you change lanes? I know three categories of people who
don`t signal on a regular basis. Politicians, the press and students. You
know, issues like a better bail bonding procedure in that rural county or
counties in Texas in general. I`m told that about 82 percent of the people
in Odwalla County jail are people awaiting trial. They`ve not been
convicted of anything. Many of them don`t have the resources to post bond.
So I want to, before I dig too deep into the facts of this case because I
just don`t know what I don`t know. But what I do know is that there`s a
need for serious criminal justice reforms in this country and Texas is
ground zero for that.

SHARPTON: Now, along those lines, the Texas commission on jail standards
is investigating the county jail now. "The Houston Chronicle" says that so
far it found two big problems. Jail officials did not observe inmates
every 60 minutes, and the jail did not properly train its staff in
supervising inmates who were mentally disabled or potentially suicidal.
Senator, what`s your reaction to that?

ELLIS: That`s a serious problem particularly when it`s a jail that just
had a suicide about two, two-and-a-half years ago. I mean, just
commonsense issues like if you`re going to have that many people in a rural
county jail, should you give them trash bags, as an example, to clean their
own room. So whether or not this was a suicide or not, I don`t know. But
that is a serious problem. If you`re going to incarcerate such large
numbers of people particularly for minor infractions. Look at that case
from Rikers Island, of course, the young man was there much longer --

SHARPTON: Right.

ELLIS: But a whole host of reforms came out of that, and I hope that comes
out of this tragedy in Texas.

SHARPTON: Trymaine, the family is en route to Texas. I spoke with the
lawyer today. They are going to meet with officials and really press for
justice here. Do you know whether or not they`re going to get an
independent autopsy?

LEE: That`s what a lot of people are calling for, Rev. I spoke to someone
earlier who said, you know, they really want to push for the FBI getting
their own autopsy. As now as you know, families who are searching for
answers have a few limited tools at their disposal. You have to imagine
that this would be one of them. I want to also reference back to what the
-- said, apparently the D.A. said there were 85 people in this jail on
Friday night over the weekend. If you ever come to this community, Rev,
it`s a very small country little snap of a town.

SHARPTON: Right.

LEE: To have 85 people in there is very interesting to say the least. And
she was one of those folks by herself. But again, to your point, the
family`s coming down for answers from Chicago. On Monday they`ll meet with
Texas rangers. And they`re hopeful they`ll get at least some answers or
some insight into what happened to Sandra Bland.

SHARPTON: Well, we`re going to stay on this story. Trymaine Lee and State
Senator Rodney Ellis, thank you both for your time tonight.

ELLIS: Thank you.

LEE: Thank you, Rev.

SHARPTON: Coming up, will Joe Biden run for president? It`s a long shot,
but when does the speculation become serious, and what does it say about
the democratic field?

And later, one year since the death of Eric Garner. A community still
healing and a national movement sparked and still going.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: It`s a big night in Iowa tonight. All five of the Democrats
running for president will be on stage together for the first time, but
there`s buzz about another democrat not on that stage. Vice President Joe
Biden. He`s been very visible lately. This week selling the President`s
Iran deal on Capitol Hill and from the Iran announcement to the Supreme
Court upholding ObamaCare to re-establishing ties from Cuba, Biden has been
there for all the administration`s success this summer. And we`re seeing a
lot of speculation in the press about a Biden run. Even a report saying
his late son Beau was reportedly pushing his father to run. Now a Biden
run is more than a long shot, but he said whoever gets the nomination,
they`ve got to defend the Obama legacy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

VICE PRES. JOE BIDEN (D), UNITED STATES: In my view, those seeking the
lead the nation should protect and defend and run, yes, run, on what we`ve
done, own what we have done, stand for what we have done, acknowledge what
we`ve done and be judged on what we have done. Some say that would amount
to a third term of the president. I call it sticking with what works.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: So what does the speculation say about the democratic field?
And could Biden still have an effect on the field?

Joining me now is political strategist Angela Rye as well as Will Pierce of
the Draft Biden group. Thank you both for being here.

ANGELA RYE, POLITICAL STRATEGIST: Thanks, Rev.

WILL PIERCE, DRAFT BIDEN PAC`S ORGANIZING DIRECTOR: Thank you.

SHARPTON: Let me start with you, Will. Why do you want Joe Biden to run?

PIERCE: Reverend, I want the Vice President to run because, myself, I`m an
army veteran. I deployed over to Iraq and Afghanistan. And I want someone
like the Vice President who has over 30 years of foreign policy experience
and domestic experience to help lead our nation.

SHARPTON: Angela, we`ve talked a lot about the Warren effect.

RYE: Uh-mm.

SHARPTON: Is there a Biden effect possibly?

RYE: I think there`s 100 percent of Biden effect. The reality of Joe
Biden is that he is an individual that everyone loves. I think that
article after article says that the Republicans say, well, I don`t agree
with his politics but there isn`t anything about that guy that I don`t
love. So, Biden effect is entirely possible into his immediate last point,
it does equate to a third term for the President.

SHARPTON: What kind of response are you getting, Will? Is there in your
judgment, a groundswell or it`s just some loyalists or some admirers that
are advocating this?

PIERCE: Reverend, we`re seeing people from everywhere in the country
coming out to support the vice president. We have over 100,000 people who
have signed our petition on a website DraftBiden2016.com. We have state
legislators into early stage are all organizing. Myself, I was just down
in South Carolina this past week. And South Carolina especially is very
organized and ready for the vice president. We`ve seen just a national
movement and are ready for him.

SHARPTON: Angela, you know, I mentioned earlier, but when we talked about
Joe Biden`s future, we have to remember he just lost his oldest son. But
according to "The Wall Street Journal," quote, "Before his death, Beau
Biden encouraged his father to get into the race. And hunter Biden told a
friend in recent weeks he, too, would like to see the Vice President wage
one more campaign for the White House." How much could this affect his
decision?

RYE: I think it will have a tremendous effect. Lately, the President`s
been spending a lot of time with his family, and to the extent that --

SHARPTON: You mean the Vice President.

RYE: I`m sorry, the Vice President, yes.

SHARPTON: All right.

RYE: He`s been spending a ton of time with his family. And they could
very well be putting the same ideas into his mind. Beau Biden was, as he
described, his soul. And so to the extent that he wants to ensure that he
does something, one of his son`s last wishes, I think he very well could do
it. I think the other thing that is important for democratic primary is
you want to have a candidate whoever it is in a general to be vetted and
the best way to ensure that they`re vetted is to be tested and tried on a
stage with other qualified candidates.

SHARPTON: I got to say this to you. When we think of the 2016 race and
the field, it`s clear that Democrats don`t want Hillary Clinton to have a
free pass. A "Washington Post"/ABC poll last month showed 55 percent of
democratic-leaning respondents think that other democrats should run. Is
that`s what`s behind the Joe talk and the Warren talk, Democrats don`t want
a coronation here?

RYE: I don`t think they do want a coronation. I know for me, I`m a
democrat, I don`t want a coronation. Again, I think the most important
thing that could be done for the potential candidate who would eventually
be the nominee is that they`ve been properly vetted, they`ve been tried,
they`ve been tested and they have been tried in debates. And I think Joe
Biden, as we know, is an excellent debater.

SHARPTON: Well, have you or any of your group had any direct conversations
with the vice president or his senior advisers?

PIERCE: We haven`t had any direct conversations with the Vice President.
But we`ve been doing this since March. And by now the Vice President and
his inner circle, they could have come out and said, hey, let`s stop doing
this. But we have seen nothing but just great response here at the home
hontai (ph) country. And just like you were talking about earlier, about
numbers, a recent poll came out this week over 30 percent of polled
Americans said that they would support the Vice President if he gets in.
And the most important thing, like you were saying as well, the hontai (ph)
primary, it`s kind of like the playoffs before the Super Bowl. We want to
make sure whoever is going to be the nominee in Philadelphia is ready to go
against a republican.

SHARPTON: So, the staff of the Vice President or his advisers have not
talked to you, but they have not discouraged you or called on you to stop
either.

PIERCE: We haven`t had not hear any -- anyone saying, no, let`s stop what
you`re doing. But what we`ve seen throughout the country just past
supporters of the Vice President, people who will endorsed him when he ran
in 2008 as well as back in `88, they`re coming out and supporting the Vice
President.

SHARPTON: If he runs, Angela, what do you think the immediate reaction
would be? Hillary Clinton is way ahead in the polls. Does he get traction
quickly? What does it do to the field, what does it do to the race if Vice
President Biden just all of a sudden jumps in the race?

RYE: Sure. I think it will be exciting for the Democrats right now. The
primaries have been kind of slow. I know folks have been kind of excited
about Bernie Sanders but we`re still seeing him in the teens. The polls
that have come out about a potential Vice President ran have also been in
the teens. But I think if he`s in the race, you might see something a
little different.

SHARPTON: Well, the news has been Trump lately.

(LAUGHTER)

IYER: Pun intended.

SHARPTON: Yes. Pun definitely intended. Angela Rye, Will Pierce, thank
you both for your time tonight.

IYER: Thanks, Rev.

SHARPTON: Have a great weekend.

PIERCE: You too.

SHARPTON: Ahead, Eric Garner`s family fighting for justice exactly one
year after the chokehold death that sparked a national conversation.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: We`re back with a couple of stories to make you smile. In the
middle of the summer, what`s better than a nice dip in the pool? Only this
young boy was pretty hesitant about jumping in. But just listen to how he
pumped himself up.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Okay. I`ll do it. I`m great. I`m Sean. I`m going to
jump in this water right now in the pool! Okay. I`ll do it.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Way to go, my man. Sometimes all you need is a little courage
to take a leap of faith. The country`s oldest living veteran took a trip
to the White House today. One hundred ten-year-old Emma Didlake met
President Obama in the Oval Office this afternoon.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: Ms. Emma Didlake is our oldest
living member, 110 years old, born in 1905, and served with distinction and
honor and received all sorts of commendations for her service during World
War II. We are so grateful that she is here with us today, and it`s a
great reminder of not only the sacrifices that the greatest generation made
on our behalf, but also the kind of trailblazing that our women veterans
made, African-American veterans who helped to integrate our armed services.
We are very, very proud of them, and that`s why we got to make sure we do
right by them. All right? So a great honor to have her here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: It`s a great honor for all of us to hear her story. Thank you
for your service, Miss Emma.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Today is an important day. One year since the death of Eric
Garner, exactly one year today. He died after being put in a chokehold
during his arrest for selling loose cigarettes. It was the first of
several high profile deaths over the last year at the hands of police. And
it sparked a national outcry. People of all races marched in the street.
Athletes and celebrities drew attention to the case by wearing shirts that
said "I can`t breathe." And President Obama talked about it. A grand jury
refused to press charges, but last week Governor Andrew Cuomo announced
that all police-involved deaths would be handled by a special prosecutor.
And this week I was with the family when they learned that they`ll receive
a $5.9 million settlement from New York City. My colleague Joy Reid spoke
with Eric Garner`s daughter about her dad.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ERICA GARNER, ERIC GARNER`S DAUGHTER: People don`t think of my father as a
human being. He was a human being, he was a father, he was my best friend,
he was my counselor, he was my daughter`s grandfather. And we want justice
not just for the past but for the future.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: I was honored to be part of a church service this week
remembering Eric Garner`s life. POLITICS NATION film crew was there and
captured the emotional service to help a community come together.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: A symbolic moment at the Eric Garner memorial. The Police
Borough commander lighting a unity candle with Garner`s mother Gwen Carr.
The service brought the family together with police, community and faith
leaders all joined in prayer.

CARDINAL TIMOTHY DOLAN, ARCHBISHOP OF NEW YORK: I`m afraid we all gasp
with Eric as we admit we can`t breathe.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Police officers sitting with the Garner family as New York Mayor
Bill de Blasio talked about his impact.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK CITY: Brothers and sisters, Eric Garner
did not die in vain. It should not need to be said, but until we make more
progress, we will say it again. Black lives matter.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Many in the community still frustrated by the tragedy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COREY ETHERIDGE, NEW YORK RESIDENT: I`m thinking back to Rodney King.
Where are we at 2015, we`re still having the same conversation?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They can learn a whole lot from it. But learning is
not the thing. It`s doing something about it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: But still others have hope.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What are we supposed to do, stand as a people and do
nothing? That`s not fair. But hopefully one day something will change.
It has to change.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: As a community looks for a way to move forward and find justice.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: We can reach out and try to heal each other`s pain and maybe
healing can begin.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know his mother misses him. We think about him all
the time. We never forget him.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: It`s been a year, a year that has brought the nation and many of
us all over the country, but the Garner case was the first one. There`s
been a lot of talk on all sides, attacks and praise, hope and despair, but
at the end of the day, it is undeniable that something is wrong with how we
deal with our criminal justice system when it relates to these cases. All
police are not bad. Most are not. But there must be a way to hold those
that are accountable and those that are not to have the benefit of the
trust in the community that the inquiry into their behavior was fair.

But let us also remember we`re dealing with human beings, with families and
loved ones. They`re not activists, they`re not the once out front like us
that chose this life. They`re ordinary people whose lives are gone, who
leave families who just want real straightforward answers. That`s what
this country should stand for. That`s what this is all about. We`ve made
some incremental steps toward that, but we`ve got to make longer and
stronger steps. We can`t rest until we can all breathe in a nation that
has equal protection under the law. We owe that to all involved.

Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. Have a great weekend. "HARDBALL"
starts right now.

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

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