ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
July 2, 2013
Guests: Tim Carney, Larry Hall, Glenn Greenwald, Ayman Mohyeldin, Mona
Eltahawy, Samer Shehata
CHRIS HAYES, HOST: Good evening, from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
Tonight on ALL IN:
A high-stakes international drama playing out tonight as the airplane
carrying the president of Bolivia has been forced to reroute and land in
Austria. Why? Because of reports that NSA leaker Edward Snowden had been
smuggled onboard when the plane left Moscow. That story is coming up.
Also tonight, right now, it is quite simply one of the largest protests in
all of human history. But what we are witnessing in Egypt is a very
delicate situation, on the verge of total chaos. We`ll go live to Cairo
for the very latest.
Plus, super awesome helicopters. They`re super awesome and they`re super
expensive and for some crazy reason, they`re jammed into the immigration
bill in one of the craziest pork stories I`ve seen in ages.
But we begin tonight on this: the 49th anniversary of President Lyndon B.
Johnson signing the Civil Rights Act into law.
It was LBJ`s then-special assistant Bill Moyers who wrote on that night,
July 2nd, 1964, he found LBJ who just signed one of the most monumental and
morally elevated pieces of legislation in this country`s history, in a,
quote, "melancholy mood."
When lawyers asked him what was troubling him, the president said, "I think
we just delivered the South to the Republican Party for a long time to
Ninety-nine years later, that prediction looks spot-on in the state of
North Carolina, where the Republican Party gained control of both of the
state`s legislative and executive branches for the first time since 1870.
That all-Republican government of North Carolina is making very good on
LBJ`s prediction. Legislatively, he`s trying to undo the gains of the
Civil Rights Act. Politically, it`s catering to those who saw themselves
being on the losing side of that landmark law.
Yesterday, we received further confirmation from the chair of the state
senate rules committee who said Republicans would be moving forward with a
voter ID legislation next week. North Carolina will join the Republican
government of Texas and the Republican government of Mississippi in rushing
through voter restriction laws o the heels of the Supreme Court`s voting
According to a "Los Angeles Times" report, North Carolina freed from the
Voting Rights Acts preclearance provision, well in addition to working on a
voter ID, work to end early voting which 2 million people, mostly
Democrats, took advantage of during the last election. Eliminate same-day
registration. And end Sunday voting.
Now, the context of this is that the Republican Party in the South, in
particular, is -- well, it`s a party of white people. A party that has,
frankly, every incentive, strategically, to maximize levels of white
turnout and minimize levels of other turnout. That`s more or less the
tactic the Republican parties of the South have taken, certainly in North
Carolina, sparking massive protests in response.
Those suppression tactics were not supposed to be the strategy of the
National Republican Party, particularly after the clock cleaning they
received in 2012, because all of us across the spectrum in the days and
weeks after that election, looked at the exit polls and we all saw the same
results. Barack Obama won Latinos by 50 points, Asians by 47 points and
African-Americans by a cool 87 points.
We also saw that Mitt Romney actually won about as much of the white vote
as George H.W. Bush did but lost the election because the 2012 electorate
was 13 percent less white than the 1988 electorate.
And so, observers of the Republican Party concluded the party was going to
have to change.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS: The future of the Republican Party,
Hispanics are a crucial voting bloc. So what will Republicans do to win
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: We`ve got to get rid of the immigration issue
altogether. It`s simple for me to fix it. And that is in a position that
I`ve evolved on.
KARL ROVE, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: The first thing that we need to do is we
need to be, you know, forward leaning on immigration.
BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS: The Republican Party is going to have to ask itself
if the hard line position Mitt Romney assuredly took during the primary
season to win this election, hard line law and order position on
immigration is in the long run a winning position for them.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
HAYES: And thus was born the "gang of eight" and Marco Rubio`s meteoric
rise to Republican stardom as the man who could bridge both worlds. But
now, with the most comprehensive immigration reform in a generation staring
them in the face, Republicans and prominent members of the center right are
beginning to rethink their logic. They`re starting to think maybe, just
maybe, we can just get by on white people.
And much of this recent thinking has come straight from Sean Trende of
"Real Clear Politics" who has written a series of extremely influential
pieces about, quote, "The case of the missing white voter." which he has
dangled in front depressed Republicans the tantalizing possibility that if
they can win elections, they can win elections if only those missing white
people showed up.
Republicans started to think to themselves, if only we can get enough white
people to the polls. Well, then, we don`t have to sign this immigration
bill that we don`t like and even yet we don`t have to, better yet, we don`t
have to pander to Latinos.
You`re even hearing that thinking from relatively respectable talking heads
like Brit Hume.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HUME: I am absolutely convinced this troupe (ph) you`re hearing saying if
Republicans don`t go for immigration reform, much as the Senate has done,
they`re going to be -- they`ll never win another presidential election.
Oh, baloney. There was -- if you look at the statistics, you find there
was one significant bloc of voters who turned out in major numbers this
time and a major way, below expectations, below their `08 turnout and that
was white voters.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Think for a second what the modern Republican Party already looks
like before it made a collective institutional decision to further embrace
white voters. This is what Republican voters looked like before they
decided to really put their backs into becoming the party of white people.
Just imagine what that party is going to look like after.
Joining me now is Tim Carney, senior political columnist at the "Washington
Examiner," visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.
All right, Tim, you and I he gone back and forth on this a little bit.
Tell me where you are in terms of just as a descriptive matter of where
this debate is inside Republican and conservative circles, because I am
seeing it play out and I feel like the Trende article has been really
TIM CARNEY, WASHINGTON EXAMINER: There`s this underwear gnomes arguments
coming from Barack Obama, right? Help Barack Obama get an immigration bill
that includes amnesty so he can have a big signing ceremony. That`s step
Step two is a question mark. And step three is Republicans win the
I`m not sure how that argument plays out, and very few Republicans are
convinced by that. A lot of Republicans just sort of assert that.
What we really is the industry, the K. Street, the Chamber of Commerce
pushing for something that will bring in more workers and that will help
business. But this cuts against the idea of trying to get the missing
white voters. Because the missing white voters aren`t the Southerners that
you spent the opening talking about -- the missing white voters are people
in Pennsylvania, in Ohio, all the way down to Nevada, who are working class
whites, who feel left out by both Democrats and Republicans.
HAYES: So this is a fascinating analogy. First, take them in steps.
I completely agree. Here`s what I would say about the Marco Rubio thing --
I agree that the idea that passing comprehensive immigration reform, with
Republican votes, Marco Rubio at the signing ceremony, that`s going to turn
the ship around in an instant with Latino voters. I agree that that is
What I do think is this, having the House Republican caucus kill this bill
when the hopes of 11 million people are on the line will be absolutely
deathly destructive for a long period of time with that bloc of voters.
Don`t you think that?
CARNEY: Yes. And this is one reason that Rubio bringing it up was, I
think, stabbing his own party in the back because you give this great
opening for the people to attack Republicans as being racist, as hating
Hispanics. Republicans ought to be trying to get more Hispanic and more
black voters in. Not just to win more votes, but because a good party will
have lots of different voices and lots of different perspectives
contributing to it.
The way to do it is not to hand the president some victory on immigration.
So, that`s my view there.
But I do agree that the missing white vote is a relevant factor because you
look at how the Republicans turned away these working class whites because
that`s who it was.
HAYES: Let`s talk about that for a second because the missing -- when I
hear let`s go after the missing white voter, I start to think, oh, Lord,
what would it look like if the party says, man, we really have to cultivate
a sense of white motivation and white grievance and get to the poll.
What -- but you, Trende actually makes an argument, it might not be as
horrible as you think when you hear that.
CARNEY: No, in fact, right before this, I was listing Chris Matthews
misstate it. It was not that there were these hardcore conservatives who
stayed home because Romney was a liberal. Sure, Romney was a liberal.
But more importantly, Romney was this country club millionaire who talked
about how 47 percent of the country couldn`t possibly vote Republican. So,
you have the people who spent the last four years under Obama not doing
well. Wages, median wages are stagnating. Unemployment is down.
Meanwhile, corporate profits are at a record high.
CARNEY: Biggest banks are even bigger. So you`ve got the working class
voters who are staying home who aren`t going to vote Republican. Working
class voters who are black and who are Hispanic, they have a home in the
Democratic Party, just because naturally that`s the way the parties line
Working class voters who are white, they don`t have a home in the
Democratic Party if they`re not already liberals and they look at Romney
and didn`t have a vote there.
So the way to go after the working class voters, I think, is a free market
populism. It`s saying Obama-nomics like a lot of Bush-nomics was enriching
HAYES: Right. So --
CARNEY: Government is growing. Government growth is enriching the well
HAYES: So, this is interesting. This is the third path out of this
wilderness would be a class war of populism. There`s the Ross Perot
example that Trende cites.
And the thing I think you and I agree on is breaking free of the kind of
donor class of the GOP to get there is going to be very difficult.
Tim Carney from "The Washington Examiner" who does battle against that
donor class every day in those pages -- thank you so much.
CARNEY: Thank you, Chris.
HAYES: Joining me now is North Carolina State Representative Larry Hall, a
Democrat, for the latest on what this Republican governance looks like on
the ground in North Carolina.
Representative, my first question for you is, were you surprised by the
alacrity with which the Republicans in North Carolina moved to push these
voting measures or announced they would be moving them in the wake of the
voting rights decision?
STATE REP. LARRY HALL (D), NORTH CAROLINA: Well, no, and good evening,
Chris. Certainly they`ve been trying to do this for the last two sessions,
so because we had a Democratic governor last session, we were able to
sustain her veto of these efforts, but they`re back and they`re ready to go
to do what they`ve always wanted to do. Restrict the right of people to
HAYES: What are the arguments that they are making? I mean, the arguments
generally that Republicans will make in this context is about voter fraud.
Empirically, that bears out to be essentially nothing. I mean, it`s really
But how do they make an argument -- I want to play this -- I was thinking
about how you make the argument about banning Sunday voting as if Sunday is
a day particularly susceptible to fraud. And here`s State Rep Bob
Steinberg giving his argument for why they should ban Sunday voting.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STATE REP. BOB STEINBURG (R), NORTH CAROLINA: I`m just opposing to voting
on Sunday. I`m opposed to hunting on Sunday. Sunday`s the Lord`s Day.
UNIDENTIFEID MALE: Technically, Saturday is the --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Do you take him at his word that that`s why he wants to shut down
HALL: Well, it doesn`t make sense. Certainly hunting is not a right
guaranteed in the constitution and one that we swore an oath to protect.
So apples and oranges, whatever you want to call it, it seems to be an
Again, the numbers bear out why they want to keep people from voting on
Sundays. They know that`s a traditional effort in the African-American
community to have folks go out and vote.
And so, that`s something that`s been successful and people are exercising
their right and they want to stop North Carolinians, in this case, from
exercising their rights.
HAYES: So if you`re running the North Carolina Republican Party, and you
have no conscience whatsoever, you`re just -- you`re just making decisions
completely amorally, it seems to me the calculation is you want to maximize
white turnout, you want to minimize turnout for people who aren`t white.
That`s just in your basic interest. And you want to cater to that group of
people that sent you there to try to hold on to that majority.
What is going to break that logic for the North Carolina Republican Party?
HALL: Well, nothing is going to break that logic. I think they`re in what
you would commonly call a death spiral. That`s the only option they have.
The policies they have will not appeal to the working families. It will
not appeal to those who want to upwardly mobile. And they`re destroying
our education system.
So the values they brought and the promises they`ve made are not being
kept. They`ve only got a war right now on folks who want to vote and want
to exercise the franchise, and they plan to keep folks away from the
polling place except for a select few.
HAYES: When you look at what`s going on in Texas with the battle there
over an antiabortion bill, what happened in Ohio with the budget there, and
there`s just been word that another bill that`s working its way through
North Carolina in one branch of the statehouse is now going to get a vote,
it looks like, in the Senate possibly tonight.
How much do the folks that you represent in your constituency, how alert
are they to this onslaught from the Republicans in your state? Well, I
think you said it right and that`s an example. What they`re doing in the
Senate tonight. They took a House bill, stripped it out, added language
that was objectionable and policies that are objectionable that aren`t
relate to the deal. They forced it out of committee, and they`re going to
vote it tonight and vote it tomorrow before people two on the Fourth of
July vacation, so the public does not have a chance to know what`s going
So, it`s not a matter of the public necessarily not being attentive. It`s
more a fact that they`re hiding what they`re doing and going to get out of
town before the public can react.
HAYES: North Carolina State Representative Larry Hall -- thanks so much.
HALL: Thank you.
HAYES: Just a little quote on that, that bill if I`m not mistaken began as
a bill to ban Sharia law and then was turned into an antiabortion bill,
which it looks like will thousand be voted at around midnight tonight and
voted on again tomorrow before people leave for the break. Think about
Coming up, the hunt for Edward Snowden had a pretty dramatic action scene
tonight. You do not want to miss this story. That`s next.
HAYES: Up next the hunt for NSA leaker Edward Snowden took a real dramatic
turn tonight. Right there. That turn. That loop. There`s an airplane
carrying the president of Bolivia that was forced to turn around mid-flight
and land in Austria because Snowden was suspected to have been on the
plane. That amazing story is next.
And later, we finally found out why Republicans wan to spend an obscene
amount of money on border security. It`s because they want some really,
really expensive toys. That`s coming up.
HAYES: Breaking news tonight in the hunt for NSA leaker Edward Snowden who
has reportedly been holed up in Moscow`s airport for a week now.
"The Associated Press" reporting tonight that the plane carrying the
Bolivian president from Russia back to Bolivia was rerouted over suspicions
that Edward Snowden was onboard presumably being smuggled away to Bolivia
to seek asylum. President Evo Morales` plane reportedly landed in Austria
within about the last 90 minutes.
After "The A.P.", France and Portugal refused access to their airspace.
Bolivia`s foreign minister released a statement denying that Snowden was
onboard the president`s plane. Quote, "We don`t know who invented this
lie. We want to denounce to the international community this injustice
with the plane of President Evo Morales."
Bolivian officials are now demanding answers from France and Portugal as to
why the president`s plane was not allowed to cross into their airspace.
At this point, the French Prime Minister`s office tells NBC news they have
no comment, no confirmation nor denial on the incident. Joining me now on
the phone from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is Glenn Greenwald, columnist on
civil liberties and U.S. national security issues for "The Guardian"
newspaper. Glenn, of course, broke the story in "The Guardian."
Glenn, my first question is what your reaction to this kind of remarkable
series of events. I`ve never heard of an example of a plane carrying a
head of state being denied access to airspace by other countries that were
not in some kind of active hostilities with that nation.
GLENN GREENWALD, THE GUARDIAN (via telephone): It is extraordinary. I
mean, the premise of this behavior presumably was that Snowden was on that
airplane because Bolivia had decided to take him back to Bolivia to either
consider or grant him asylum.
Asylum is a centuries-old right in international law, and what this would
essentially mean that Western countries like Portugal and France and
presumably working cooperatively with the United States -- which is the one
that really wants Snowden -- no longer recognizes amnesty as a valid
concept of international law and they will actually forcibly prevent other
countries from granting it. It`s really rogue nation behavior.
HAYES: Well, but here`s -- to play devil`s advocate for a moment, right?
I mean, you have someone who`s been federally charged. There is a
complaint filed. It cites which part of U.S. law. And the U.S. has asked
countries that have extradition treaties for him to be extradited to them.
This all seems like fairly standard insofar as any country that has a felon
that they are seeking who is abroad is going to want to do what they can to
make sure that they can get him back into their country so that they can
bring him to what they see as justice.
GREENWALD: Yes, I don`t actually agree with that, Chris. Most or many
people who are given asylum by Western nations are people who are charged
with crime in the country which they`re fleeing, and from which they`re
seeking asylum. So if we accepted this premise that any time anybody is
charged in a court of law with the country that they`re fleeing from, that
it means somehow asylum is invalid or that country is within its rights to
take any steps it can to prevent that person from obtaining asylum, it
would essentially be anarchy and the end of asylum.
I mean, it is true that Mr. Snowden has been charged in a federal court but
there are lots of people in the United States who say there`s an unjust
warrant on whistleblowers being waged by the Obama administration.
Remember that Bradley Manning, the WikiLeaks whistleblower, was found by a
former U.N. investigation to have been subjected to cruel and inhuman
treatment while in detention.
So, there`s a serious ground here for an asylum request, that Bolivia under
international law has every right to consider by taking him back to Bolivia
and essentially use the law of the jungle which is what France and Portugal
are doing by blocking them physically from doing that is really quite an
HAYES: Glenn, let me ask you this, there was a statement posted on the
WikiLeaks page yesterday under the name of Edward Snowden in which he
talked about what he plans to do. He heard he applied to asylum in 21
countries, notably not Russia after Vladimir Putin had made some comment
about Snowden shouldn`t make things hard for our friends in the U.S.
When you read that statement, you have talked to Edward Snowden, you spent
about as much time with him as anyone that I personally have a connection
with or have to do, there were a lot of people who felt like the syntax and
the voice of that statement did not sound even like a native English
speaker. I`m just curious when you read that statement what your reaction
was to it.
GREENWALD: I -- I -- of course, I`m being speculative here because I don`t
know who wrote it or who influence it. It seemed to me like the core ideas
were very much consistent with how Edward Snowden thinks, but that it was
sort of flavored with some person who isn`t Edward Snowden.
If you -- I think all the world really knows about him in terms of how he
expresses himself is the video --
HAYES: Is that video, yes.
GREENWALD: -- that Laura Poitras made of my interviewing him. And he`s
very mild mannered. Very soft spoken, even though his ideas are very
So the idea he won`t accept asylum in Russia if he`s not allowed to
continue to leak, the idea that he thinks that the U.S. is being extremely
unjust in its treatment of him and pressuring other countries, those are
all consistent with his philosophy, but I agree there was sort of a
virulent tone to it that didn`t strike me as his own.
Again, he`s in a pretty stressful situation --
GREENWALD: -- given that he seems to be in suspended animation in an
airport, and he`s sort of who knows what effect that has on someone.
HAYES: I have to say, I was even reticent last night when the statement
was issued to know if it was, in fact, had anything to do with Edward
Snowden because he`s in the Moscow transit lounge as we`ve been told and
it`s impossible to know through what intermediaries he`s communicating or
what he is saying because none of us, of course, can confirm that.
Glenn Greenwald from "The Guardian" joining us from Rio de Janeiro -- thank
you very much for coming out tonight. I really appreciate.
GREENWALD: Thanks, Chris. Appreciate it.
HAYES: You know the Website where some guy posts grocery lists he finds?
This really exists. It`s pretty awesome.
Well, Republicans have just made a shopping list for border control that
you will not believe. Guess what, America? You`re paying for it. I`ll
tell you what`s in it, next.
HAYES: My friend. Yes, you. Are you in the market for really serious
According to the United States Marine Corps, no single aircraft provided
better blend of offensive air support, assault support, command and
control, and aerial reconnaissance than the UH-1N Huey helicopter. If
you`re in a war zone, you spot the enemy on the ground, you want to light
them up, and Huey is the way to go, especially with its door mounted 50-
caliber machine guns.
(VIDEO CLIP PLAYS)
HAYES: The sales pitch I just threw at you is probably similar to one that
was pitch to members of Congress. And guess what? It worked. The Senate
has directed the government to order 17 of these helicopters with
situational awareness and 360-degree field of fire support.
But that`s not all. Oh, no, they also directed them to order them some
Black Hawks as well. You may know the Black Hawk helicopter from the film
"Black Hawk Down". It`s one of the most important tools of the world`s
most powerful army. If there`s a warzone the U.S. has engaged in, there
are Black Hawks there.
Black Hawk helicopters were used famously in the raid on Osama bin Laden.
So, if you`re the manufacturer of Black Hawk or the UH-1N Huey helicopter,
let me tell you, you`re in the very good week, because last week, when the
Senate passed the comprehensive reform bill by a 68-32 margin, the border
surge amendment that was part of that bill states that the United States is
statutorily required by law to purchase these helicopters in these numbers
for the Southern border.
Just to make sure I have your attention, the United States Congress didn`t
just say, go get a bunch of helicopters or make sure you can see and
patrol the border, no. It said make sure you go get 10 Black Hawk and five
more M model helicopters put in the immigration reform bill.
This bill also directs the government to buy everything from drones to
night vision to high tech surveillance systems. In other words, this piece
of legislation turns out to be an absolute goody bag of giveaways to just
to buy the entire defense contracting industry including Sikorsky Blackhawk
helicopters at $17 million a piece, four drones of $18 million each, at a
cost of up to $3,500 an hour just to fly them, six Northrop Grumman
airborne radar systems at more than $9 each and eight American Eurocopter
helicopters coming in at a bargain just $3 million a piece.
We learned all this from a great piece of reporting in the "Washington
Post" otherwise known as actually reading the bill. It was all hiding in
plain sight in the text of the $38 billion Corker (inaudible) amendment
that was crafted by two self-professed fiscally conservative Republicans.
This is something of a surprise to people like us. The people in the room
crafting this legislation, they knew exactly what they are doing. Here`s a
tip off, the headline from the "Defense News," a defense contracting
industry publication, a day after the bill passed, here`s the headline,
"Senate passes immigration bill, billions later for drones, choppers,
Senator Patrick Leahy, who called this amendment a Christmas wish list for
Halley Burton, was warning the whole time that Corker and Hoven were
smuggling this into the bill.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. PATRICK LEAHY (D) VERMONT: For sure there are federal contracted
firms high fiving at the prospect of all the spending demanded so our
friends on other side in this amendment.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: This goes to show one of the single most important cardinal rules
of the United States Congress. It`s a rule I learned when I covered it day
after day when I was Washington bureau chief for "The Nation" magazine.
Whenever someone says the word "security," watch for your wallet. We`ll be
right back with Click 3.
HAYES: As millions of Egyptians continue to protest and as Egypt`s
military stuck to a deadline for him to step down, Egyptian President
Mohamed Morsi was defiant on state television tonight. We will go live to
Cairo with all the latest details and amazing images coming up.
But first I want to share the three awesomest things on the internet today
beginning with four decades of fashion immortalized in a school yearbook.
Meet Dale Herby of Garland, Texas. As a first year teacher in 1973, he was
told to wear something nice on school picture day. This is what we wore.
On picture day the following year, Mr. Herby put on the same exact
polyester shirt and sweater vest. Irby now tells "The Dallas Morning News"
he felt embarrassed when he realized he repeated outfits. His wife,
Cathie, dared him to go for a hat trick. After wearing the combo five
years in a row, he thought, why stop now.
So year after year, Dale Irby wore the exact same outfit for class photo
day. After 40 years of teaching, the beloved Mr. Herby has retired from
both his job and wearing the Nixon era thread. Mr. Herby`s style will live
The second awesomest thing on the internet today, some silent threading to
jolt you awake. For folks who like to ease into their morning, New York`s
local cable station New York 1 offers a perfect fix. A channel so gentle a
guy will actually read to you what`s in the papers in a segment called "In
the Papers." So imagine if you were surprised when this happened on their
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here we go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That was New York 1`s Roger Clark reporting on tonight`s U.S. air
guitar semi-finals all while demonstrating his own rather impressive chops.
And the third awesomest thing on the internet today, Mitch McConnell may
not want to ruin his record, but that won`t stop him from offering up some
funky fresh beats. Kentucky`s Secretary of State Allison Grimes is daring
to go where Ashley Judd wouldn`t. She will take on the Senate minority
leader in 2014.
However, judging by her rollout, she might want to rethink her strategy.
As the "Washington Post" reports, Grimes` announcement was not promoted on
her Twitter account, Facebook page or really by anyone other than her top
adviser. As of this afternoon, Grimes still has a campaign web site.
That`s why her opponent, the always conciliatory and courteous Mitch
McConnell has stepped up to the plate, not only introducing his opponent to
voters, new ad, but giving her an auto tune at the same time.
Well, apparently McConnell`s staff was too busy thinking of things that
rhyme. Check it out, they didn`t bother to spell check their boss` name at
the end of the ad, just a little typo. If this is their idea of
proofreading, I`d hate to see their research.
You can find all the links for tonight`s Click 3 on our web site,
allinwithchris.com. We`ll be right back.
HAYES: Today, after days of protests by an unprecedented number of
Egyptians, a nation at the very heart of the Arab spring, 60 years of
authoritarian rule, came crumbling down on all our television sets bringing
about a democratically elected government. Today, the nation of Egypt is
once again threatening to explode into chaos.
The current president, Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, defied a
military ultimatum, a Wednesday deadline given by the commander of Egypt`s
armed forces to resolve the political standoff or face the military`s own
road map toward a solution. In a lengthy televised statement, President
Morsi angrily said he will not step down and will protect his
constitutional legitimacy with his life.
Morsi said, quote, "There is no substitute for legitimacy, but today
opponents of the elected Muslim Brotherhood government called their
supporters to the streets yet again and came by the millions, largely
dwarfing counter protesters called out in support of Morsi`s government.
Today`s protest featured a laser light show, which oftentimes displayed
words in English about what protesters hope is Morsi`s imminent ouster.
Some are calling this the largest mass protest in human history. An
estimated 14 million people taking to the streets in a country of 84
President Obama traveling in Africa was once again put in the position of
deciding whether to pick a side or hold back and let this very uncertain
process unfold, even after Secretary of State John Kerry last month
approved $1.3 billion in annual U.S. military aid to Egypt. President
Obama called President Morsi urging him to listen to the voices of all
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: So we`re going to
continue to work with all parties inside of Egypt to try to channel this
through legal, legitimate processes. Our position has always been it`s not
our job to choose who Egypt`s leaders are. We do want to make sure that
all the voices are heard and it`s done in a peaceful way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Now with Morsi saying he`s staying put and protesters still in the
streets, all eyes on the military to see just what happens next. NBC News
foreign correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin is live tonight in Cairo with the
latest. Ayman, there was a lot of concern today, violence on the streets,
when both sides, opposition protesters and pro-Muslim Brotherhood
supporters had called to be on the streets. What played out on the streets
of Egypt today?
AYMAN MOHYELDIN, NBC NEWS FOREIGN CORRESPONDENT: There have been a few
different pockets of protests taking place across the capital and other
parts of the country. In Cairo, itself, the main anti-Morsi protest has
been in Tahrir Square. There`s been one also outside the presidential
palace. And in another part of town, the supporters of President Mohamed
Morsi have held their own rallies.
Now, in and around the areas between these two major gatherings, there
have been scrimmages. In fact, Ministry of Health officials this evening
say there have already been at least three people killed in clashes outside
of Cairo University. Now, at Cairo University, there was a group of
protesters who were actually in support of President Morsi.
They are alleging that police did not protect them from attacks carried
out by thugs. And so in the last couple hours, particularly since the end
of President Mohamed Morsi`s speech, there has been an uptick in violence
that many people feel is a result of the building tension in these final
hours before the ultimatum.
HAYES: The ultimatum which the military has issued, I would even say not
with authoritatively, but on somewhat dubious authority, other than the
fact they are the military, this ultimatum they`ve issued, my understanding
is it expires around 10:00, 11:00 a.m. our time tomorrow morning. What are
people anticipating in the next 12 to 24 hours?
MOHYELDIN: Well, at this particular point, we really have no clear
indication what is going to happen. Local Egyptian media with sources in
the military have been suggesting that the military has already prepared
this roadmap. The roadmap would involve a series of short-term and long-
Among the short-term steps would be the announcement that the constitution
has been suspended. That the parliament will be dissolved and that
elections in the long run would be held. Now, to get the government back
up and functioning, a caretaker prime minister would be appointed, perhaps
one from the military, an officer, perhaps or certainly somebody the
military approves of that would be made up mostly of a technocratic
They would then be responsible for running the day-to-day affairs of the
country while a committee of experts prepares a new constitution that would
then pave the way for presidential and parliamentary election. What would
happen to President Mohamed Morsi, what would happen to senior members of
the Muslim Brotherhood, Freedom and Justice Party?
What would happen to the political opposition and the protests? All those
questions remain unclear. We do know the military has deployed some
additional resources on the streets. There are more police present in and
around areas that could be possible flashpoints including the large
As of right now, nobody has a clear indication what will happen once that
ultimatum is actually reached at 4:00 p.m. local time, as you mentioned,
around 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time.
HAYES: Ayman, when the first round of protests broke out that ended up
ousting Mubarak from power, there was a broad perception, my understanding
from my reporting, there was a broad perception the U.S. was slow to back
protesters that essentially stood with Mubarak. What is the perception,
now, giving the very carefully parse statement of the president today.
What is the perception there about where U.S. is in this particular
MOHYELDIN: If you were to ask those in Tahrir Square, those that have been
campaigning against President Morsi, there is no mistake about it. The
United States has once again stood with the wrong leader in this equation.
For the past year, many people have been criticizing how the United States
has systemically warmed up to the Muslim Brotherhood.
More so in recent days, ahead of this big protest, on Sunday, the United
States ambassador here in Cairo, Ann Paterson, made some very controversial
remarks that angered a lot of Egyptian local media saying that the protests
were not necessarily going to amount to anything.
In fact, many people interpreted her comments as lending legitimacy to the
presidency of Mohamed Morsi saying he was democratically elected, but more
importantly, he was capable of getting the job done. So a lot of local
media took her to task. More so, the protesters and activists have been
very critical in terms of how the United States has not exercised more
influence over the course of the last year in trying to make sure this
country takes proper transitions to democracy.
HAYES: NBC`s Ayman Mohyeldin, thank you so much. Really appreciate it.
More on the U.S. role in Egypt and the question of whether we are in
danger of, as Ayman just mentioned, ending up on the wrong side of a
popular movement for the second time in just a few years when we come back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is this how Egypt is going to change presidents, every
time there`s a president you`re not happy with, protesters are going to
come out and you`re going to kick him out?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, hopefully we`ll have a proper constitution and a
proper parliament that will give us the democratic means of impeaching this
president. Right now the country is built on no foundations and a
president that is doing a very bad job. So you don`t have democratic means
of impeaching this president right now so this is all we have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That was an Egyptian protester speaking with NBC news chief foreign
correspondent Richard Engel. Joining me now is Mona Eltahawy, an Egyptian
activist and columnist, and Samer Shehata, associate professor of Middle
Eastern politics at the University of Oklahoma.
I want to start with you. You`re living in Egypt now. You`ve been very
involved in the protests from the beginning. What gets 14 million people
in the streets, like why is everyone so angry, and why, and maybe this
shows my own ignorance, but it seems kind of all the sudden that this has
sparked. Explain to me why we saw a galvanized action.
MONA ELTAHAWY, EGYPTIAN ACTIVIST: Mohamed Morsi has spent the last year
since elected to president during this transitional period, at every step.
Last November, tremendous powers to himself that allowed him to rush
through a constitution that is utterly horrendous and incredibly unfair to
the revolution and the Egyptians that paid with their lives for this
revolution. He consistently attacked his opponents. He sent to jail, in
detention, activists. He`s even hounded comedians like Yusef who is
described as the Jon Stewart of Egypt. He made it impossible. You have an
extra 1 million against him in the streets.
HAYES: That`s great.
ELTAHAWY: Which says to me Egyptians just like this young man said,
because they don`t have institutional means of impeaching him. The economy
is on the brink of collapse. Unemployment is terrible. Torture is more now
under Morsi than it was under Mubarak. So we`re looking at him saying, how
can you help us in this transition?
HAYES: All right, So here is where -- I`m watches this unfold, reading it.
At one level I have zero love for the Muslim Brotherhood, and the way he`s
acted as a quasi authoritarian figure. It`s not the greatest thing for the
development of Egyptian democracy for the first democratically elected
government to collapse within a year under the threat of essentially a
military coup. How should I be feeling about this as an American liberal
watching this unfold? I want someone to tell me whose side I should be on
as I watch for this outcome.
SAMER SHEHATA, UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA: Well, I think your emotions are
spot on. I mean, clearly the side that you should be on is the side of the
people and the popular will. And I think that is demonstrated in the
people in Tahrir protesting as well as the people protesting in front of
the presidential palace, but your torn ambivalent feelings are correct
because here we have a paradox.
We have a supposedly democratic movement calling for the military to
intervene to oust a democratically elected president in order to restore
Egypt on the right path to democracy. Clearly there are some difficulties
here. The difficulty is not only with the idea that Morsi be removed, but
then what happens to the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist groups in
Now, I share the feelings completely with regard to Morsi`s abysmal
leadership and presidency. She also mentioned the economy has
deteriorated. There are daily fuel shortages, electricity outages. He`s
done none of the things he`s promised to do. At the same time, however,
you cannot exclude any significant elements of the population that is
willing to participate in formal politics.
So, you remember what happened in Algeria. Not that it`s going to happen
in e Egypt, but when a military pushed aside democratically elected
Islamists, the salvation front, that led to a civil war of horrific
proportions. That`s not going to happen in Egypt. How do you integrate
the Muslim Brotherhood into the politics?
HAYES: Here`s the thing I kept thinking about, I would not want to be the
person who wakes up every morning for the Egypt portfolio for the U.S.
government. If I could get in a time machine now and talk to some
Americans in 2003 and said, check this out, in ten years the U.S.
government will be viewed by the most populist Arab nation in the world
being close to the political Islam party. You would be like, are you out of
your mind? Somehow it now perceived at the U.S. and Muslim Brotherhood of
all people are in bed together.
ELTAHAWY: It`s hugely ironic. I sat on a panel with Madeleine Albright a
couple of days ago. This horrible word, stability, kept coming up. The
U.S. administration and the people who advice cannot get over that
stability must not come at the expense of the people. So 20 years ago, 30
years ago I would have told the administration, make sure there`s enough
space in the middle for people who aren`t either the military or Muslim
Brotherhood to be the only powers in the country. We`re now the third point
of that triangle and the military must understand that people will not
allow return to military rule.
HAYES: If you could sit down with the president for 15 minutes and tell
him how to play the next 12 hours, it seems like a real difficult thing to
navigate. What would your advice be?
SHEHATA: Well, it`s clearly a difficult position. The first thing Mr.
Obama has to realize is the United States` influence on Egypt and other
countries in the region is significantly less than it was before. In the
past it was a phone call to an autocrat who was not accountable. Egyptians
and Tunisians and Yeminis are making their own.
Secondly, I think Mr. Obama hasn`t, and it was pointed out earlier, hasn`t
put enough pressure on Mr. Morsi up to this point to behave in a democratic
fashion. Clearly he needs to be putting pressure on Mr. Morsi, but also
needs to be telling the Egypt military that receives $1.3 million of
American largesse every year.
That we will not tolerate what we saw before with regard to autocratic
politics d military`s involvement in domestic affairs. There needs to be
some process that produces civilian democratic pluralist politics where all
Egyptians are equal, regardless of gender, religion and so on.
HAYES: What you just said right there, your two-pronged answer is the
contradiction I always here. Point one, the U.S. has to recognize it has
less influence. Point two, the U.S. needs to exert pressure to make sure
this outcome happens. That seems like what we face here as we watch the
countdown toward the ultimatum tomorrow morning. Egyptian activist Mona
Eltahawy here with me at the table. Samer Shehata from the University of
Oklahoma, thank you both.
That`s ALL IN for this evening. The "RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now.
Good evening, Rachel.
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