All In With Chris Hayes, Wednesday, August 5th, 2015
Read the transcript from the Wednesday show
Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: August 5, 2015
Guest: Evan McMorris-Santoro, Lawrence Wilkerson, Jonathan Allen
STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC GUEST HOST: Good evening from Cleveland, site
of the first Republican presidential debate of the 2016 campaign, taking
place tomorrow night. I`m Steve Kornacki, in for Chris Hayes.
These are the ten candidates invited into the primetime debate
tomorrow night, under the rules set forth by debate host FOX News. The
candidate with the highest poll number, Donald Trump right now, will be
center stage tomorrow night with the other candidates positioned around him
based on their standing in the polls.
These seven candidates polled outside the top ten in the average of
the national polls chosen by FOX, and because of that, they missed the cut.
They will not be allowed the take cut in the main debate. Instead, they
are being relegated to an earlier debate at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow. A debate
expected to attract far fewer eyeballs than that prime time showdown.
And Donald Trump yesterday taking credit for the fact that two of his
primary antagonists, Rick Perry and Lindsey Graham, are both being forced
into the earlier debate. They will not be on the main stage. Trump
telling "Breitbart", quote, "Graham and Perry were really hitting me hard
and they went down in the polls. I am greatly honored by that."
Trump says his plan for tomorrow night is simply to be the Donald.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don`t know how you can
rehearse for a debate. I watched Romney, Mitt Romney. He let us down last
time. He rehearsed. And that third debate, it was really catastrophic. I
don`t know what happened to him. But I think you have to be yourself. You
have to be who you are.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: FOX News debate moderators say they have a plan for dealing
with Trump though they aren`t sharing it right now. One of the moderators,
Bret Baier, last month told "Time" that he gets, quote, "cold sweats" not
at the thought of handling Donald Trump.
Joining me now is Chuck Todd, NBC News political director and
moderator of "Meet the Press".
Well, Chuck, let`s start on Trump. That`s the guy everybody`s going
to be looking for, first and foremost, tomorrow night. So, we have seen he
has attacked John McCain. It didn`t hurt him. He gave out Lindsey
Graham`s cell phone number, it didn`t hurt him. When he seems to trip up
on a policy question, he just blows off, doesn`t seem to hurt him. Is
there anything that can go wrong for Donald Trump in this debate tomorrow?
CHUCK TODD, NBC NEWS POLITICAL DIRECTOR: I think if he is caught
without an answer. If he is caught sort of fumbling around. And, you
know, we`ve not seen him in this role. He is not used to being cut off,
although you do get sense that Trump is trying harder, sort of in
shortening his answers a little bit. Softening his tone a little bit,
which I think is a weird risk for him, because I think some people that are
gravitating toward him, one of the reasons is the idea that he is
unfiltered, the idea that he is unscripted.
So, I think that on one hand -- I get why he is trying to show that
he`ll tone it down. He wants to surprise people that are skeptical of him.
That is only way to grow if he is serious about this.
But he also needs to provide his sort of base here which is, I think
this base is sort of sticking it to the elites. He has to give them
Now, my guess is he will hit Bush and hit Bush hard on the shared
donor issue with the Clintons. Like that was just ready made for him. But
I -- he`s got to find something. I think he can`t be too mellow.
KORNACKI: That`s interesting. The idea that he is maybe not blunt
enough for all the bluster we`ve seen the last few weeks.
So, what about from the other side? He has been, to the extent he`s
been telegraphing anything, that he doesn`t plan to go in there to attack
these guys full on. He will wait to see if they attack him.
But how do these other candidates, how does Jeb Bush, how should he be
handling Donald Trump? Because there`s almost a physical intimidation with
the way Donald Trump argues with people, and attacks people. There is a
risk for somebody like Jeb Bush of looking weak if he doesn`t handle at
this time right way.
TODD: I think Jeb is in the toughest box of them all, especially
coming off what wasn`t a very strong performance in New Hampshire. He got
criticized, a very powerful Byron York piece in the "Washington Examiner"
over the weekend quoting a lot of conservatives who were concerned that Jeb
didn`t respond to Hillary Clinton`s broad side at the Urban League where
she mocked Right to Rise, basically pounding him throughout most of the
speech. Then he gets on there and pre tends it never happens.
So, I do think there is a potential narrative that is about to take
off if he is not careful among some conservatives who think, is Jeb tough
enough? Is he tough enough to take on the Clintons? If he is not tough
enough to take on Trump, does that make him tough enough to take on the
So, I think he`s got a lot on the lightning. I think he might have
more on the line here than anybody.
But, Steve, let me throw some back at you here on the minute. The
idea that we`re debating he will go after anybody, he is the front-runner.
Normally, it should be -- the norm is the frontrunner won`t attack anybody.
They have on sit and wait for the incoming.
It will be amazing to me if he doesn`t get attacked. Conventional
debate rules state when you`re in a debate, you go after the guy who`s in
KORNACKI: Well, I guess there`s the thing we`ve seen with Donald
Trump, though, isn`t it? That all the conventional rules and the
conventional assumptions, seem to be out the window, at least for right
now. For instance, I mean, it seems to me, whenever I see a reporter
talking or writing about this race, it seems they felt the need to
immediately attach a disclaimer. Not that I think Donald Trump will
actually be president, that I think he will beat the Republican nominee.
But are we starting to reassess that a little bit? If he gets out of
this debate tomorrow night unscathed, if he even jumps out in the polls
more, do we get to a point here where we have to start saying, this could
TODD: You`re right. I was thinking about the way you were doing.
That I was thinking of the pass over line.
You`re right. I`ve noticed that in a lot of people writing it up.
But they want to make sure they let the readers know. Nobody really thinks
he can get the nomination.
Now, I think he is attempted into something. At first immigration is
a wedge in the Republican Party. That`s not news. We know that it is, but
it`s usually not a long lasting thing.
The other part of his message that is more powerful, that you hear
resonating when you talk to Trump voters, people who say they`re for Trump
and you ask them why, it is the issue that he is not a member of the
political class or in their minds he`s not, that even though he is rich and
a billionaire, he is not part of the elite. By the way, that`s an amazing
thing for him to pull off.
Here`s a billionaire who have does nothing but invites elites to his
weddings and hangs out with them and rubs elbows, but because of the way
he`s talked, and because of the way the elites talk about him, the more
they criticize and the more the working class folks that have been
gravitating toward him think, well, he`s not one of them and he`ll stick it
I think that`s -- that`s the part of his message that is more powerful
here that could resonate across party lines, and that all the candidates
should be nervous about.
KORNACKI: All right. Well, a lot of anticipation here of that that
debate just over 24 hours from now. What will Trump say? What will the
others say to him?
Chuck Todd, thanks for your time tonight, I appreciate it.
TODD: All right, Steve.
KORNACKI: And for the second time in less than a week now, Donald
Trump`s campaign has cut ties with someone over racially charged posts on
social media. First, the Trump campaign fired staffer Sam Nunberg over
racist Facebook posts and now, BuzzFeed has a new story about an operative
named Aaron Borders, who identified himself as Trump`s Arizona state
director, and who has a story of racially charged Facebook posts.
But that`s just the part of the story that includes secret recordings
that seem to contradict claims made by Trump`s campaign manager.
Here to explain is Evan McMorris-Santoro, "BuzzFeed News" White House
So, Evan, I put -- the basics there. Tell us what you guys learned
EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, BUZZFEED NEWS: Well, first of all, Steve, it`s
great to see you at a reasonable hour although I miss the doughnuts in
front of me.
KORNACKI: Well, we`ll ship some to you. Don`t worry.
MCMORRIS-SANTORO: You know, this is a great story reported by my
colleagues, Andrew Kaczynski, Chris Massey (ph), and Elan van Mayer (ph).
This is a story that sort of encapsulates at one sort of political
sophistication by Donald Trump and also kind of the level of support, sort
of where Donald Trump still is when it comes to the rest of the Republican
So, as you mentioned, this Aaron Borders, who is a former Maricopa
County, Arizona Republican Party official, he was vice chair, I believe, of
the party, former politician himself. He tried run for state house and
didn`t make it.
You know, he has claimed and says that he is the Arizona state
director for Donald Trump and was paid by Donald Trump, or going to be paid
by Donald Trump to write up a plan for Arizona, you know, a plan for the
And then our reporting by the reporters that I mentioned, our team dug
in and found these incendiary Facebook posts were on the one hand, somewhat
common to some segments of the far right but very, very extreme in terms of
racially tinged language, about Obama specifically, President Obama
So, we asked him about it. And he, you know, said, OK, I`m this guy.
I`m this guy`s director. We asked the campaign about it.
And campaign says, "We don`t know this person at all. He is an
Now, generally, when that happens, there is a campaign that is having
a crisis moment, trying to lock it down, trying to protect itself, you
don`t get, which is what we got, which was phone recordings that Border
made of the phone call he had between the Trump campaign and himself,
talking about the fact that they were going to claim that he was an
overzealous campaign volunteer.
So, now, the story is the insides of what the Trump operation campaign
is like, which is that they`re very nervous about these staffer stories.
They want to shut these staffer stories down.
You mentioned the Sam Nunberg story, which they, you know, they fired
the Sam Nunberg guy. They distanced themselves from him. They`re on the
phone with him, according to our recordings, saying that, you know, we
don`t need -- we can`t have you around anymore of these posts. These posts
are incendiary. We don`t want you around.
We`re going to say we never knew anything about you when the phone
call that we got have them saying that which flies in the face of not
knowing anything about him.
KORNACKI: And I guess one of the questions about this, too, is long
term for the Trump campaign. This is something. They`ve tacked into this
grassroots energy out there on the far right, certainly on this issue of
immigration. And there is a campaign that is being put together
organizationally on the fly. There`s a risk here for the campaign of a lot
more eruptions like this.
MCMORRIS-SANTORO: Well, that`s right. This is why this campaign
connects with a certain sophistication you may not have expected, which is
that he has a campaign manager that is aware of things that can be bad for
them, that understands staff stories, stories that aren`t just about Donald
Trump are bad and they distance themselves very quickly, which is a modern
day of doing.
They with call them, we mentioned in the Facebook posts, he is out of
the tent in moments just like that Sam Nunberg guy days after being caught.
But on the other hand, he has tapped into some of the things that the Tea
Party candidates from 2012 also got trapped with, which is that some of
these tougher, more incendiary comments. So, that`s a problem going
forward. So, it`s interesting how these will balance -- these incendiary
comments, plus keeping a good campaign going.
KORNACKI: All right. Evan McMorris-Santoro from "BuzzFeed" -- thanks
for taking a few minutes tonight. Appreciate it.
MCMORRIS-SANTORO: Sure. Thanks.
KORNACKI: All right. Still ahead in our preview of the big debate
tomorrow, how President Obama anticipated and countered the expected
criticisms of his Iran deal today.
Plus, how topics like the Black Lives Matter movement and immigration
will play out on stage.
And later, the other TV event also taking place tomorrow night, as Jon
Stewart makes his final appearance behind "The Daily Show" desk.
That story and much more, straight ahead.
KORNACKI: For nearly an hour this afternoon, President Obama
prebutted the kind of arguments we can expect to hear from the debate stage
tomorrow night, by taking on his Iran critics point by point.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Let me address a few of
the arguments that have been made so far in opposition to this deal.
First, there are those who say the inspections are not strong enough
because inspectors can`t go anywhere in Iran at any time with no notice.
TRUMP: We don`t have the right to inspect immediately.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re giving them 24 days --
AD NARRATOR: Military sites can go uninspected.
OBAMA: Well, here`s the truth. Inspectors will be allowed daily
access to Iran`s key nuclear sites. And, by the way, nuclear material
isn`t something you hide in the closet.
The bottom line is if Iran cheats, we can catch them and we will.
Second, there are those who argue that the deal isn`t strong enough
because some of the limitations on the civilian nuclear program expire in
SEN. TOM COTTON (R), ARKANSAS: A 10 to 15 years.
AD NARRATOR: And over the next 10 to 15 years, all restrictions will
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS: In about 10 to 15 years.
OBAMA: Without this deal, the scenarios the critics warn about
happening in 15 years could happen six months from now. By killing this
deal, Congress would not merely pave Iran`s pathway to a bomb. It would
Third, the number of critics say the deal isn`t worth it. Randle will
get billions of dollars in sanctions relief.
SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: Over $100 billion will flow into Iran.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: Iran will deep more than billions of
RICK PERRY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hundreds of billions of
OBAMA: An argument is effectively sanctions against any diplomatic
resolution of this issues. And whatever benefit Iran may claim from
sanction relief pales in comparison to the danger it could pose with a
Now, the final criticism, this is sort of a catch all that you may
hear, is the notion that there`s a better deal to be had. We should get a
SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: This is a terrible deal.
GOV. SCOTT WALKER (R), WISCONSIN: Why do we have a bad Iran deal in.
GOV. BOBBY JINDAL (R), LOUISIANA: This is a bad deal.
GRAHAM: At the end of the day, there is a better deal.
OBAMA: That`s repeated over and over again. It`s a bad deal. Need a
Those who say we can walk away from this deal and maintain sanctions
are selling a fantasy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Much more on the president`s preemptive, pre-debate attack
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: Between now and the congressional vote in September, you are
going to hear a lot of arguments against this deal. If the rhetoric in
these ads and the accompanying commentary sounds familiar, it should. For
many of the same people who argued for the war in Iraq are now making the
case against the Iran nuclear deal. It was a mindset characterized by a
preference for military action over diplomacy, a mindset that put a premium
on unilateral U.S. action over the painstaking work of building
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: President Obama making the case for his nuclear deal with
Iran at a speech today at American University, connecting the current
opposition to the deal to the push for the Iraq war more than a decade ago.
Coming on the eve of the first Republican presidential debate, this
speech functioned as a kind of prebuttal to what we`re likely to hear from
the Republicans on Iran tomorrow night, including one candidate who`s had
some trouble nailing down his stance on the legacy of the Iraq war and
trying to evoke John F. Kennedy who spoke at the same campus in 1963 to
present a nuclear test ban treaty the Soviet Union, President Obama today
urged the lawmakers who will decide the fate of the deal to consider the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: President Kennedy warned Americans not to see conflict as
inevitable, a combination as impossible and communication as nothing more
than the exchange of threats. And as members of Congress reflect on their
pending decision, I urge them to set aside political concerns, shut out the
noise, consider the stakes involved with the vote that you will cast.
If Congress kills this deal, we will lose more than just constraints
on Iran`s nuclear program or the sanctions we have painstakingly built, we
will have lost something more precious, America`s creditability as a leader
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Joining me now, Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of
staff to Colin Powell when he was secretary of state.
Colonel, thanks for joining us.
So, some heavy statements here from the president today, one in
particular jumped out of me where he said the choice that Congress is
facing right now with this deal is a choice between diplomacy and some kind
of war soon. I`m curious what you make of that. He seems to be saying, if
Congress rejects this Iran deal, we`re looking at war.
Do you agree with that?
COL. LAWRENCE WILKERSON, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF TO COLIN POWELL: I
think the president gave a very powerful speech, Steve. I`m not a fan of
his rhetoric anymore because I don`t think his actions live up to the
rhetoric. That said, I think this was a very powerful speech and it
covered all the points he needed to.
The mindset that identifies the people from the Iraq days with the
people now is that they lie, they disassemble, they give ambiguous answers
and they have no alternatives. And that gets to your question.
There is only one alternative here: if we say and we have said, two
presidents have said Iran with a nuclear weapon is unacceptable. We have
two choices. We proceed down the path with this negotiated deal and hope
it works and do everything we can to make it work or we go to war. There
are no other choices.
KORNACKI: When you talk about war. One thing that some critics of
this deal argue is that the notion of a massive commitment and occupation,
ground troops, that sort of thing, did that notion of war maybe doesn`t
apply to what it would take to disable Iran`s nuclear program. This is
what Senator Cotton from Arkansas said. I want to play that and get you to
react to it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)]
COTTON: The United States military has amazing capabilities. The
Israeli military has pretty amazing capabilities as well. The president
has said over the years that the military option remains on the table. I
don`t think he would say that if he didn`t it would work. I think the only
implication you can draw from that statement as well as the president`s
past statements is that that air and naval bombing of Iran`s nuclear
facilities would in fact work.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: So, Colonel, I mean, the history that somebody like Tom
Cotton would usually point to is they`ll say, look, in 1981, Israel
targeted Iraq`s nuclear reactor, a nuclear reactor. They took it out with
targeted air strikes. In 2007, Israel targeted Syria, a nuclear reactor in
Syria. They took that out. No ground troops, no long material commitment.
Why couldn`t that be done with Iran?
WILKERSON: We have a totally different situation today with Iran.
And I would hasten to advise Mr. Cotton that he needs to look back on ten
years and over a trillion dollars spent in Iraq and no real positive
solution there, and then look at Iran with three time population, four
times the territory, much more difficult territory. And think about what
it would mean to really have to do something militarily, because what you
get with bombing, and I`m participated in studies, others have produced
studies, that more or less demonstrate this with great clarity, is you get
a five to seven-year delay in the program.
It goes then deep underground like the North Koreans and they make a
decision which our intelligence community says they have not made to this
point to build a nuclear weapon and they build it. And they were
confronted with one or two possibilities again, we either invade and end it
for all time or we let it go on and they develop it. By the way, that`s
what we did with North Korea. We let it go on and they`re now a nuclear
KORNACKI: Another thing president said in this speech today, he
talked about the knee-jerk partisanship a big part of the opposition here.
And I take his point, that has been an aspect of American politics for the
last few years. But there are also a number of Democrats who have come out
against this deal. There were a number from New York, I saw the other day.
Do you see -- beyond knee-jerk partisanship, do you see some valid
objections, some valid critiques of this deal?
WILKERSON: There is a valid critique of the deal, of course. I won`t
go into it, because it`s complex and I don`t think it really matters here,
because such stark alternatives.
I think that we have to give as the president did, in his speech, a
nod to those who are listening to Bibi Netanyahu and others in the Israeli
government around Netanyahu and who really believe that this potential for
a nuclear weapon and this will lead to it they think, is existential for
I think the exact opposite. I think the chaos in the region unleashed
by America`s invasion of Iraq, ISIS, all that that produced, the civil war
in Syria, has put Israel`s security in jeopardy unlike any time since 1948.
I think further military action in the region against Iran, further
embroiling the empire, if you will, in southwest Asia and for God who knows
how long and how much money will jeopardize Israel security even further.
So, I think they have a genuine interest in Israel`s security, but I
think their arguments are misplaced and wrong.
KORNACKI: All right. Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, thank you for your
time tonight. Appreciate it.
WILKERSON: Thanks for having me, Steve.
KORNACKI: Still ahead, why the FBI is now asking questions about the
security of Hillary Clinton`s private e-mail. That`s next.
KORNACKI: If there`s one person you can expect to be a major presence
at tomorrow night`s Republican debate, without actually being there on
stage, it`s probably Hillary Clinton, the Democratic frontrunner. And with
all the attacks she is likely to come under, her campaign probably wasn`t
too happy to see yet another round of bad headlines on the eve of that
first Republican debate set off by "The Washington Post" scooped this
morning that the FBI is now looking into the security of Clinton`s private
I`m joined now by Jonathan Allen, chief political correspondent for
"Vox" and co-author of "HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary
So, Jonathan, we had a story last week, or two weeks ago by "The New
York Times" about Clinton and maybe a Justice Department investigation. A
lot of the details of that were subsequently walked back by the newspaper.
Now, we have this report from "The Washington Post" about the FBI.
Do we know the nature of what they`re looking at and where this could
JONATHAN ALLEN, VOX CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: I think this is
really part of the same thing. It is a question of whether classified
information was being forwarded to, sent to, received by Hillary Clinton
and then how the State Department handled any information that might have
been classified once they got possession of this document. So, this is
actually a related thing, and congressman Elijah Cummings, the top Democrat
on the House Benghazi committee, wrote something for the Huffington Post a
few days ago basically said, the Chairman Trey Gowdy had written to the FBI
asking them to look into this. So a very related matter to that earlier
Still, we`re not talking about a criminal investigation and still
we`re not talking about Secretary Clinton being the subject of an
investigation. But it is not good news for her.
KORNACKI: Yeah. There is some new polling numbers, too. I want to
put these up on the screen. One of these is in New Hampshire, the first
primary state in the
country, the second contest next year on the Democratic side. Look at
this, this came out just yesterday now. Bernie Sanders, of course, he`s a
next door neighbor. He`s from Vermont, so a lot of people there extra
familiar with him. But he is within six points in this poll of Hillary
Clinton in New Hampshire.
And if you take a step back and look at the national numbers, a little
bit more lopsided there. Our new NBC poll showing Hillary Clinton still
about -- a little more than 2-1 ahead of Bernie Sanders nationally, but
again there is growth there for Bernie Sanders.
So with these stories that we keep seeing about the email server. Now
we have the story of the FBI. I guess every month between now and the
election there are going to be releases of new batches of emails.
Are you picking up concerns among Democrats that this is the kind of
issue that could drag Hillary Clinton down?
ALLEN: Oh, absolutely. I think there`s -- they don`t want to say it
too loudly because there`s some concern that they could actually stoke the
fire a little bit. But I do hear from Democrats, mostly from people who
are not big Hillary Clinton fans, but I do hear from Democrats that they
are worried that they could nominate her and then have her implode in a
general election because of this email issue.
But there are two sort of separate issues here, Steve. One is the
legal issue, the question of whether she did anything wrong legally and she
may be fine in that regard. We haven`t seen any charges against her or any
illegality. But the other one is a political problem. And that goes to
who is it that we might be electing president and how does she structure
She decided to do this email system in a way that subverted open
records rules. And I think that that`s something that makes Americans a
little bit uncomfortable and certainly something that ties into that
narrative of her not being trustworthy.
KORNACKI: All right, Jonathan Allen from Fox. Thanks for your time
tonight. Appreciate it.
ALLEN: Take care.
KORNACKI: And coming up, how the Republican candidates will respond
to something that`s getting harder and harder to ignore: the Black Lives
Matter movement. That`s next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHUCK TODD, HOST, MEET THE PRESS: In an earlier interview this week,
asked about The Black Lives Matter movement and you called it silly. Why
did you call it silly?
DR. BEN CARSON, 2016 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don`t recall calling
silly. But what I called silly is political correctness going amok.
That`s what is silly. When, you know, I guess it was Martin O`Malley who
said black lives matter, white lives matter, he got in trouble for that and
had to apologize. That`s what I`m talking about is silly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: On Sunday`s Meet the Press, Dr. Ben Carson, the only
African-American presidential candidate from either party appeared to walk
back comments he made last week to the left leaning news outlet Think
Progress about The Black
Lives Matter movement.
In the 360 days since Mike Brown was killed by Darren Wilson, the
incident that essentially gave rise to The Black Lives Matter movement, a
growing number of Americans say the country needs to change to give
African-Americans the same rights as white.
A new Washington Post poll finding that 60 percent of Americans
believe that to be the case, and that marks a shift from a Pew Research
Poll just last year. Back then, prior to Ferguson, less than 50 percent of
American said that more changes were needed to guarantee equal treatment.
The question now seems to be if whether The Black Lives Matter
movement, perhaps the most intense civil rights movement in a generation,
will play a role
in the first Republican presidential debate tomorrow.
Joining me now is Dorian Warren, MSNBC contributor and host of Nerding
Out on MSNBC`s Shift. He`s also a senior fellow at the Roosevelt
So, Dorian, we heard Ben Carson there talking about -- he sees
political correctness at work here. He mentions Martin O`Malley getting
booed at Net Roots
Nation. Jeb Bush also recently basically made the same point, Jeb Bush,
said about that Martin O`Malley incident. He said we`re so upsight and so
politically correct now that you apologize for saying lives matter. I know
in the political context, it is a slogan, I guess.
So it is really striking to me when you ask a Republican presidential
candidate about the Black Lives movement, and you ask a Democratic
presidential candidate about it, you`re getting two very completely
different answers here. It`s almost as if there`s no common ground
DORIAN WARREN, HOST, NERDING OUT: Right now there`s no common ground.
But, Steve, there are two ways in which movements influence American
politics. One is through agenda settings. So, at the National Urban
League Conference last week, all three of the major candidates on the
Democratic side, Secretary of State -- former Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton, Martin O`Malley and Bernie Sanders all gave speeches addressing
the demands of the Black Lives Matter movement, around police
accountability, around the criminal justice system and mass incarceration,
around issues of disinvestment in especially black communities and
It is almost as if the movement could have written the speeches that
those three Democratic candidates gave.
Now on the Republican side, you`re right. They think this is silly to
Ben Carson`s phrase. But let me tell you, you pointed to polling data.
And this is the second way in which movements have power. They influence
public opinion and the public opinion among Americans and particularly
among white Americans and independence has shifted dramatically in the last
year since Mike Brown`s killing.
And so you have now a majority of white Americans who agree that we
need to do more around racial justice in this country. We have over 60
percent of independents who agree. And even on the Republican side,
something like 20 some odd percentage of Republicans agreed last year. Now
it is over a third.
So even within the Republican Party, there is movement in agreement in
terms of public opinion with the broader demands of the movement.
KORNACKI: Although it is striking. Here is another poll stat that
jumped out at me. You talk about the issue of police violence, police
brutality. A new AP poll out just today showing 18 percent of Republicans
say that police are more
likely to use deadly force against a black person. 50 percent of Democrats
say that`s the case. A big chasm there.
I want to play for you how Donald Trump is talking about this. Donald
Trump was asked by Chuck Todd on Meet the Press about Black Lives Matter.
This is what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TODD: I want to ask you about Black Lives Matter. The latest
shooting of a white police officer shooting an unarmed black man. Do you
see this as a crisis in
DONALD TRUMP, REAL ESTATE DEVELOPER: It is a massive crisis. It is a
double crisis. So, what`s happening and people, I look at things and I see
it on television and some horrible mistakes are made. At the same time, we
give power back to the police, because crime is rampant. And I`m a big
person that believes in very big -- you know, we need police. And we need
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: You know, Dorian, the story of Donald Trump`s rise in the
polls. I`m curious with what you think of who he is talking to there, who
he is connecting with, because the claim that crime is rampant. I mean, of
course the story of the last generation is that crime has fallen to record
low levels and yet there is a constituency out there that`s listening to
that and nodding its head.
WARREN: Yeah, there`s so much to unpack with that discombobulated
statement by Donald Trump, half of which was just not factual. The first
half I think is more important where he acknowledges there is a problem.
And so if he says that on the stage tomorrow night, that there is a problem
of police killing of innocent black people, how will his other comrades in
the Republican Party respond to
And so in that sense, he is actually again responding to the Black
Matter movement. He has to acknowledge that there is a problem even though
he sneaks in and basically a lie, right, that crime is somehow rampant
which is just not true.
But he addressed the first -- in the first half of that comment, he
acknowledged the movement`s demands.
KORANCKI: All right. Dorian Warren, thank you for your time tonight.
WARREN: Thank you, Steve.
KORNACKI: And still to come, Donald Trump`s immigration comments
looked like they might sink him. Instead, well, why it left the other GOP
candidates scrambling to catch up with him. That`s ahead.
KORANCKI: For the second time in two weeks, police responded to
reports of an active shooter at a movie theater today. This time it was at
a theater outside Nashville, Tennessee.
Joining me live from the scene with the latest is NBC`s Mark Potter.
Mark, I understand new details now emerging about this incident. What is
the latest we know about what happened there in Nashville today?
MARK POTTER, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is an ever fluid
situation. It is changing minute by minute. We`re waiting for an official
news conference to happen again soon. What we are hearing now from police
is that despite the thing
that they said earlier about the suspect being in his 50s, they are now
saying he was a 29-year-old white male, a local man. They had not
identified him officially yet so we`re waiting for that.
There have been some reports giving out a name but we`re not going
with that yet until we get officially confirmed.
They`ve also, they were revising the account of what happened in the
room, in the theater, when an officer walked in here and confronted the
man. At first they said that the suspect fired at the officer. The
officer fired back, retreated. The man went out the back door and was shot
dead by SWAT officers. Later, the police chief here for the metro police
department said that the officer went in, the man raised his hand, appeared
to pull a trigger finger. The officer backed up. They didn`t know if the
man had actually fired a shot. He went out the back door, threatened the
SWAT team somehow and was shot dead.
Now -- and the officer said that they had, the chief said they had not
found that handgun. Now there`s been a tweet that`s gone out alleging that
an air soft pistol, it`s like a pellet gun, that shoots soft pellets, that
that`s what the man was carrying. And they showed a picture of that.
So again we`re waiting for all this to be pulled together, to have a
clearer picture of what the man had.
What we do hear consistently is that he was inside. He was
threatening patrons. He had pepper spray with red dye in it and he went
after at least three patrons in there with the pepper spray, one man was
also slightly cut apparently with a hatchet that this man was carrying.
Nobody was seriously hurt, none of the patrons seriously hurt. No one
was taken away in the ambulance. But this could have been much worse.
The -- a patron in the theater next door said he was told by police of
a man, a white man with red hair comes in here, run, get out of here. And
that was a warning he was given.
So, Steve, we`re getting new details as we go. And we expect more
KORNACKI: All right. Mark Potter in Antioch, Tennessee. Appreciate
the time tonight. Thank you
We`ll be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICK SANTORUM, 2016 REPUBLCIAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Everyone else
is dancing around it. I`m going stand for the American worker.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO, (R) FLORIDA: We have to prove to the American
people that illegal immigration is under control. They want to see the
fence completed. They want to see more border agents. They want to see
more drones and cameras and ground sensors.
RICK PERRY, FRM. GOVERNOR OF TEXAS: Those that have overstayed their
visas, you go find them, you pick them up, and you send them back wherever
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Donald Trump`s declaration that some undocumented
immigrants are rapists and murderers could have hurt him in the polls,
instead it didn`t, though, it actually may have helped to propel him to
front runner status in that very crowded Republican field.
With a recent CBS News poll finding that 65 percent of Republican
primary voters are confident in Trump`s ability to make decisions on
Trump`s fellow Republican candidates are now trying to play catch up,
many of them targeting the candidates are playing catch up, many of them
targeting so-called sanctuary cities along the way.
Sanctuary cities are places that shield undocumented immigrants by
refusing to comply with federal immigration officials.
Yesterday Rand Paul introduced an amendment in the senate that would
restrict aid for these cities.
John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Jeb Bush, Rick Perry, Mike Huckabee and Carly
Fiorina just to name a few have all loudly called for the federal
government to do the same. And this week Bobby Jindal went one step
further saying a sanctuary city mayors should, quote, absolutely be
Joining me now is one of those mayors. The mayor of a sanctuary city.
Joe Curtatone of Summerville, Massachusetts, Summerville a so-called
So, Mr. Mayor, thank you for joining us tonight.
Well, I mean, let me put it to you this way, if federal law says there
are certain people who should not be in this country, if they are illegally
living in this country, illegally living in the city, why shouldn`t you be
trying to turn them in?
JODSEPH CURTATONE, MAYOR OF SUMMERVILLE, MA: Well, thanks, Steve, for
having me on.
You know, I think the issue which is typical of the rhetoric, the
reckless rhetoric you`re hearing from the candidates, especially on the GOP
side, really just confuses people and didn`t give justice and truthfulness
to what sanctuary cities and how they were developed and what they mean.
Sanctuary cities evolved almost 30 years ago, actually in 1979,
starting in Los Angeles, and Summerville, Massachusetts, 1987.
And it weren`t done in an attempt to not cooperate with federal
officials, but to not have us have to begin to profile and distinguish
between so much documented and undocumented status.
Now, I am, I continue to be blown away by comments of Bobby Jindal and
the actions of the other candidates. There`s nothing bold about these
comments. There`s nothing that espouses leadership with their statements.
In fact, these are cowardly comments meant to incite the mob.
We are a community in Summerville, Massachusetts where one-third of my
population is foreign born. We speak 52 languages. Since we declared
a sanctuary city -- and it`s not the only variable, over time our crime has
been down 41 percent.
It is just absolutely absurd and people know that it is much more
complex than this, absolutely absurd on the part of Governor Jindal or any
other candidate to make statements such as, the declaration or calling
yourself a sanctuary city in and of itself cultivates an environment for
rapists, for murders, for felons. That`s just not the case.
KORNACKI: OK, so you are saying you don`t want to be in a situation
where you have to be checking the paperwork of everybody trying to
distinguish between documented and undocumented.
But are there circumstances? Is there any condition where you would
investigate, where you would inquire about, where you would look into
somebody`s immigration status?
Summerville not only has been a sanctuary city since 1987, a little
over a year ago I signed an executive order stopping our participation in
the secured communities program. You know, federal courts have found that
program to be unconstitutional. In fact, it was unconstitutional for
municipalities to hold people on a blind warrant detainer.
In fact, Summerville`s policy is that if you have a felonious record,
been charged with a violent crime, or such as the case in San Francisco,
we`ll not only hold you on the immigration warrant, we will follow up with
those federal agencies.
You don`t get a free pass. And just because a community that more
than almost 300 communities and counties that have declared themselves
sanctuary cities over the decades, that doesn`t mean you get a free pass,
that`s just not the case.
All the data belies -- actually everything that Bobby Jindal and the
other candidates have stated belies the data, the truthful data that during
the greatest wave of undocumented immigration since then, all the studies
show, Steve, that undocumented males are less likely to commit crimes than
their counterparts here in the U.S. It is just not true.
And what I find even offensive is that I`m a mayor of a small city
trying to grow an exceptional place, create an exceptional place to live,
work play and raise their family for all. I need their participation and
the engagement to earn the trust of everyone in the community to solve
issues of public health, public safety. But I find myself out there by
myself as one small city mayor, when I hope others will join me side by
side taking on the ridiculous reckless rhetoric of Bobby
Jindal and that cast of cowardly characters.
KORANCKI: All right, Joe Cortatone, the mayor of Summerville,
Massachusetts, thanks for joining us tonight.
And up next, Jon Stewart bids farewell to The Daily Show on Fox News
debate night. We`ll look at that next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JON STEWART, HOST, THE DAILY SHOW: What appeared to me to be another
example of a Fox News segment expressing anger and victimization over the
loss of absolute power and reframing that as persecution of real America by
minorities, free loaders and socialists -- that`s trademarked by the way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: Tomorrow night is a big night for television. Fox News
will host the first official Republican presidential debate and Jon Stewart
will host his final episode of The Daily Show after a 16-year run.
Going after the Fox News machine and its personalities has become a
staple over his show over these years so it is really something that he`ll
say goodbye just minutes after what may end up being the highest rated
broadcast in Fox News history.
Joining me now is, Matthew Belloni, executive editor of the Hollywood
So Matthew, I`m wondering if it is seen tomorrow night, Fox has this
debate for two hours from 9:00-11:00. Jon Stewart comes on the air at
11:00. He has just watched this with everybody else. And he says, you
know what? I`m going on keep going. I can`t -- this is too good to hang
it up now.
I mean, he is going to miss this, isn`t he?
MATTHEW BELLONI, HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: Oh, absolutely. I mean, there
is no doubt that Fox News and Jon Stewart have both benefited from each
other over the past, especially the past five to ten years.
You know, Roger Ailes, the head of Fox News, just gave the Hollywood
Reporter a statement saying he actually doesn`t think Jon Stewart dislikes
him and there`s
no reason to. They`ve -- Fox News has been a fountain of material for Jon
Stewart over the years.
KORNACKI: You know, it is hard to remember when he took over the show
back in 1999, it wasn`t nearly as political. It didn`t have the edge that
right now. Here`s one of those I think key moments in sort of the
evolution of Jon
Stewart`s Daily Show. A lot of people probably remember this, 2004. He
went on Crossfire, that old show on CNN and this happen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEWART: It`s not so much that it is bad as it is hurting America.
So I wanted to come here today...
TUCKER CARLSON, FRM. CO-HOST CROSSFIRE: But in its defense. Wait,
STEWART: Here`s just what I wanted to tell you guys. Stop. Stop,
stop, stop hurting America. And come work for us. Because we as the
CARLSON: How do you pay?
STEWART: The people -- not well.
CARLSON: Better than CNN, I`m sure.
STEWART: But you can sleep at night.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KORNACKI: And you know, Matthew, after that appearance, Crossfire was
canceled. Jon Stewart was celebrated in a lot of quarters for that. Was
that where he really found his identity?
BELLONI: I think so.
Right around that period, it was a period where he dropped the couch
from his set and he turned it into much more of a news programesque looking
The head of CNN at the time later said that -- when Jon Stewart did
that, it actually contributed to their decision to end Crossfire, which for
a media critics,
which is essentially what Jon Stewart has become, that`s the ultimate
compliment. He really effected change.
KORNACKI: I wonder why you think he kind of decided to hang it up.
Did he get tired of it? I used to always hear him say when he was
questioned about the
political content, the critical content of his show, he would always sort
of fall back on, hey, I`m just a comedian. What are you hassling me for?
But he was really so much more than a comedian what he was saying.
BELLONI: Oh, absolutely. I mean, he has become one of the fiercest,
funniest, most insightful and influential media critics of the past two
decades or so.
And I think as to the question of why he is leaving, he said plain and
simple just said he was getting restless. I mean, he took time off last
summer to direct a movie and I think it just sort of got him thinking,
there is more to life than this. He is only in his mid 50s. There is
probably another act for him doing something different. And he was heading
into an election cycle where he said he
just didn`t have the same fire and he was ready to hand it off.
KORNACKI: All right.
Matthew Belloni from the Hollywood reporter, thanks for joining us
tonight. Appreciate that.
That`s All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow Show starts right
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