IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

'The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell' for Thursday, July 25th, 2013

Read the transcript to the Thursday show

July 25, 2013
Guests: Ari Berman, Alma Adams, Mike Dow

ALEX WAGNER, GUEST HOST: It was three women. No, wait, six to ten
women. But who is counting? Survey says, voters.


that for many New Yorkers, this might disqualify me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: New developments in Weiner`s sexting scandal.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: New poll shows he`s rabidly losing support.

ANDREA MITCHELL, MSNBC ANCHOR: That is not keeping the former
disgraced congressman off the campaign trail today.

WEINER: Like problems people have, this one, thankfully, is beyond

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This guy is a predatory flasher.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: God help New York if he is elected.

TAMRON HALL, MSNBC ANCHOR: Weiner has made it clear that he does not
plan to bow out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now to our other top story.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Breaking news out of Philadelphia.

UNIDENTFIED MALE: Attorney General Eric Holder saying he will ask the
federal court --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: To protect the voting rights of U.S. citizens.

ERIC HOLDER, ATTORNEY GENERAL: I have directed them to shift

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To reinstate its authority over the voting rights
laws in Texas.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Texas`s strict new voter ID law.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a crisis. This is an emergency.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s exactly the right thing for the Justice
Department to do.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you have any thoughts on how this might
impact the work that Congress is doing on this issue?

getting the policy right.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And, by the way, Congressman Steve King --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Iowa Congressman Steve King stands by his

REP. STEVE KING (R), IOWA: They weigh 130 pounds and they`ve got
calves the size of cantaloupe.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Comparing immigrants to drug mules.

KING: Because they`re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the

BOEHNER: Representative Steve King made comments that were I think
deeply offensive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The speaker of the House, other leaders have said,
stop it.


BOEHNER: I think I have made that pretty clear.

KING: What I`m saying is factually correct.

BOEHNER: What he has said does not reflect the values of the American
people or the Republican Party values.

REINCE PRIEBUS, RNC CHAIRMAN: I don`t know if I`d use the word
tolerant. I don`t really care for that word myself.

BOEHNER: I think I`ve made myself very clear when it comes to Mr.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So there you go. We`ll see how that plays.


WAGNER: Good evening. I`m Alex Wagner, in for Lawrence O`Donnell.

Carlos Danger`s sexting partner gave her first TV interview to "Inside


SYDNEY LEATHERS: He was making these campaign promises that he had
totally changed, that he was a better man now and he learned from his
mistakes. And I am proof that that is not true.

JIM MORET, INSIDE EDITION: Do you think he was trying to pull one
over on the voters of New York?

LEATHERS: Oh, absolutely. Otherwise, he wouldn`t have went on the
whole, "oh, I`m a changed man, I`ve learned my lesson." He wouldn`t have
said all of those things if he wasn`t trying to be someone he wasn`t.


WAGNER: As for Carlos Danger himself, his pants are (INAUDIBLE),
while his poll numbers are starting to cool.

Campaigning today in Brooklyn, Anthony Weiner rolled up his sleeves,
donned the hair net and spent some in the kitchen preparing meals with

Later, when speaking to reporters, he was questioned, not about his
plans for the city of New York, but why voters should believe Weiner when
he says he is no longer sending lewd messages to women who are not his


WEINER: These things did take place before and after I resigned.
Over a period of time, sometimes they didn`t go consistently, whatever.
But the point is, they`re behind me. It`s a year ago at least.


WAGNER: OK, wait. It is a year ago at least.

According to the reports from, the site that published
the oh, my God, we can`t show those on TV pictures of Anthony Weiner, the
recipient of those pictures said, "Things were already tense by August
2012, already talks of the Chicago sex condo and having sexual
conversations. We would send naked images to each other and have phone
sex. Anthony Weiner would send me penis pictures from his Carlos Danger
Yahoo email to my Gmail. By November 2012, our relationship began to
fizzle out."

August 2012 is 11 months ago. November 2012 is only seven months ago.
Neither is, quote, "a year ago at least."

Today,, also published un-pixilated versions of the
former congressman`s sexting photos. But as with many things Weiner-
related, oh, my God, we can`t show those on TV.

A brand new poll taken after this latest round of scandals finds
Weiner`s unfavorability rating has skyrocketed, 55 percent of New York City
Democrats now have an unfavorable impression of him, only 30 percent give
him the thumbs up. That is the opposite of last month, when 52 percent of
the city`s Democrats have a favorable impression of Weiner, and just 36
percent had an unfavorable one.

Carlos Danger is now trailing his main Democratic rival in the mayor`s
race by nine points, 26 to 16 percent. Last month, this same poll put
Weiner out in front by five points.

Today, Anthony Weiner, also finally, sort of answered this question.


REPORTER: How many women were there? Can you remember?

WEINER: There are more than -- there are few -- I don`t have a
specific number for you.

REPORTER: Can you ballpark it?

WEINER: It`s not dozens, and dozens. It`s six to ten, I suppose, but
I can`t tell you what absolutely what someone else is going to consider
inappropriate or not.


WAGNER: Joining me is the host of "ALL IN", Chris Hayes, and the host
of "UP", Steve Kornacki.

Gentlemen, I don`t -- it is unfortunate, Chris, that our viewing
public could not see you with your forehead on the desk, as Anthony Weiner
gave yet again the I can`t say with certitude answer, and I must play this
archive footage from his interview with our colleague Rachel Maddow. Can
we cue up the videotape?


WEINER: Part of it doesn`t look familiar to me, but a lot of people
looking at this stuff on our behalf are cautioning me that, you know, stuff
gets manipulated. Stuff gets -- you know, you can change a photograph.
You can manipulate a photograph. You can doctor a photograph.

And so, I don`t want to say with certitude it maybe didn`t start out
being a photo of mine, and now looks different, or maybe it was something
that was from another account that got sent to me. I don`t -- I can`t say
for sure. I don`t want to say with certitude. I`m not trying to be
evasive. I just don`t know.


WAGNER: I`m not trying to evasive. Chris, is there any reason New
York City voters should trust Anthony Weiner on this at any point?

CHRIS HAYES, "ALL IN" HOST: I mean, you know, look, I don`t think
Anthony Weiner should be mayor for a whole lot of reasons. And these are -
- I would go through about, you know, just as a New York City voter, I got
to about 20 before I got to this.

What I think what you are seeing reflect in the polling is just a
feeling -- like this is that, A, this is a circus and circuses are things
that are created both by the media and the candidate. But it`s a circus
that he seems to thrive off of, that he seems to me like, and this was the
case when the first thing broke. I mean, remember how many different press
conferences he did, I keep thinking to myself, just stop talking to the
press, like this --

WAGNER: Or stop sexting. That`s one way of not creating the circus.
Stop sexting with six to ten women after you`re apparently on the road to

HAYES: Well, look, clearly, incredibly compulsive behavior on his
part. And so, I think that what -- from a political perspective, to sort
of getting out how people feel about this morally, what is frustrating and
also a -- let`s say a turnoff to New York City voters is that -- is that
you don`t want -- this is not what you want the mayoral race to be.
Frankly, there was a day of headlines and a sort of prurient thrill.

But this city, 8 million people live here. It`s a very important
election. And this is not what I really think anybody wants to be talking
about in any way. And I think if you`re a voter, myself, as a voter, I`m
just like it -- stop it, stop, stop, stop.

WAGNER: And yet, it still trickles on, Steve. To Chris` point about
whether or not Anthony Weiner, independent of the sexting scandal, is
qualified to be New York City mayor. I must read an excerpt from a
damning, searing indictment by Richard Kim in "The Nation."

"As a congressman, Anthony Weiner was a spectacularly ineffective
buffoon. Weiner was megalomaniacal, narcissistic, bad at navigating the
political ropes, alienating to potential allies, alarmingly disinterested
in making actual change, and really, really mean to his staff. Yes,
Anthony Weiner is a weasel, a liar, a moron, and a ridiculous egomaniac.
Yes, he is unfit to hold public office. It doesn`t take a picture of his
junk to prove that."

STEVE KORNACKI, "UP" HOST: Well, to me, it`s always been -- it`s been
the narcissism, sort of mixed with the ambition and a little bit of
recklessness. But, Anthony Weiner, the most unfair comparison politics, I
always believe, is when people look at Anthony Weiner and they look at
Chuck Schumer and say, well, this is the same politician. They`re both
always on TV, they`re both always holding press conferences. And there is
a fundamental difference between Anthony Weiner and Chuck Schumer.

I think if you go back to when they`re in college, you can figure it

Chuck Schumer when he was in college wanted to be a chemist. Anthony
Weiner wanted to be a TV weatherman. Anthony Weiner is essentially a
performer. He`s sort of a performance artist as a politician.

He learned how to cut corners so he wouldn`t actually do the work
behind the legislations. He would, for instance, go to the well of the
House after his colleagues from New York, Carolyn Maloney and Jerrod Nadler
had spent months working on the 911 bill, which he had nothing to do with.
He would go to the floor of the House, he would have this eruption, and
he`d be all over cable news, and he`d be everybody`s hero for standing up
to the big Republicans, without doing any work, without doing anything
productive. That encapsulates Anthony Weiner`s entire congressional and
political career.

WAGNER: He didn`t get any legislation passed. He couldn`t build any
coalitions. He was really, really mean to his staff. I mean, to go this
far, with that as your record, Chris, and think somehow you will be
insulated, or that people will forgive you and give you the benefit of the
doubt, or come to your assistance, when something like this breaks, I have
to play the sound of Nancy Pelosi today. Let`s hear what the former
speaker of the House has to say.


REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), CALIFORNIA: Let me be very clear: the conduct
of some of these people we`re talking about is so reprehensible. It is so
disrespectable of women. And what`s really stunning of that they don`t
even realize, you know, they don`t have a clue. And it is really -- if
they`re clueless, get a clue. If they need therapy, do it in private.


WAGNER: If they`re clueless, here is a clue delivered by Nancy

HAYES: And they there is sort of reference to Bob Filner, mayor of
San Diego, who actually is going to far more serious allegations of him,
I`d just like to say, are far more serious, because they involve groping
constituents and staff members, right? So this is predatory, exploitative

I think what is sort of astounding about this situation, from a pure
character study, is like the raw exhibition of display. And the notion,
which was embodied also by Huma Abedin, his wife, like this guy, we should
forgive all of this because of how great Anthony Weiner is, because he is
such a spectacular gift to the city of New York, because he would be an
amazing mayor of probably the hardest city in the world to govern. And
there is no evidence backing up that claim --

KORNACKI: There is evidence that he would be a terrible mayor.

WAGNER: Right, there is only the --

HAYES: He was at the congressional office and he ran it poorly.

WAGNER: It`s like John Boehner speaking about the president`s jobs
plan today and he said it`s like an Easter egg with no chocolates in it.
That`s sort of like Anthony`s being a candidate, there is no there, there.
There is nothing there. But apparently, sext sent to random women on the

Steve, the other piece of this, and Chris touched on Huma Abedin, is
the Clinton link. And while the Clintons, of course, stayed in the
background, at all, who knows how involved they actually are in terms of
talking to Abedin through this, but we are seeing a lot of vintage,
archival clips of Bill Clinton, this rehashing Lewinsky, although I think a
lot of people would say these are two completely different scandals. Bill
Clinton married Anthony Weiner and Huma Abedin.

There is some linkage between these two -- I guess, if you want to
call them clans. I can`t imagine this moment makes the Clintons
particularly happy if Hillary Clinton is thinking about 2016.

KORNACKI: No. The comparisons, it`s kind of driven me a little nuts
this week, because, yes, OK, look, narcissism and recklessness with Anthony
Weiner, narcissism and recklessness with Bill Clinton, no question, and
Bill Clinton responsible for what happened to him in the late 1990s.

But they were sort of -- what happened with Bill Clinton and it also
became an excuse for Republicans who tried to delegitimize his presidency
and all these other grounds to latch onto this. There was reason, I think
for the Democrats in the late 1990s to rally around Bill Clinton, even of
they believe he behaved horribly, you know, recklessly, narcissism.

With Anthony Weiner, you`re talking about somebody who is not in
office, somebody who quit the job he just had, somebody who`s saying, you
know, let`s put this all aside, make me mayor when there are six other
choices out there.

HAYES: And the other thing. I mean, the one commonality here and I
think the reason there -- the reason is there is a certain fascination,
let`s be honest with this, is the stubbornly persistent self-destruction,
right? There is an incorrigibility of it.

I mean, let`s remember -- the thing that was so remarkable about the
Bill Clinton situation, it almost tanked his campaign before he ever became
president of the United States. The idea is, whoa, man, close call on the
road there. Buckle up next time. And don`t like have a few martinis
before getting behind the wheel. And then, what do you know, right? And
that is the thing, and a lot of us are looking at this with exasperation
and judgment also, the absolute incorrigibility of the behavior.

WAGNER: I will leave America with these three names, Tony Weiner,
Carlos Danger, and Sydney Leathers, you could not write that screenplay.

Chris Hayes and Steve Kornacki, thank you both for joining me tonight.


WAGNER: Coming up, the escalating fight against voter suppression.

And later, the GOP`s trouble with minority voters gets worse.

And Steven Colbert, assessment of the royal baby name.


WAGNER: Spanish officials are now investigating the driver of the
train that crash at high speed yesterday, killing 80 people and injuring
dozens more. They suspect the train may have been running at twice the
speed limit when it derailed. Police plan to question the driver, who
according to Spanish news reports, boasted about breaking speed limits on
his Facebook page. He suffered minor injuries in the crash. At least one
American was killed in the accident.

Up next, the Justice Department`s plan to fight Texas on voter



HOLDER: And today, I am announcing that the Justice Department will
ask a federal court in Texas to subject the state of Texas to a pre-
clearance regime, similar to the one required by section 5 of the Voting
Rights Act.



WAGNER: Texas is first on the list of states with new restricted
voter ID laws. That Attorney General Eric Holder intends to challenge.
The Justice Department blocked the Texas law in 2012 under the pre-
clearance rule in the Voting Rights Act. That rule forced states with a
history of disenfranchising minority voters, to get permission before
changing voting laws.

But just two hours after the Supreme Court struck down that part of
the Voting Rights Act, Texas reintroduced the voter ID law. The Justice
Department also blocked the state from using an electoral map drawn up in
secret by a group of all white Republican representatives.


HOLDER: Based on the evidence of intentional racial discrimination
that was presented just last year in the redistricting case of Texas v.
Holder, as well as the history of pervasive voting related discrimination
against racial minorities, that the Supreme Court itself has recognized, we
believe that the state of Texas should be required to go through a
preclearance process whenever it changes its voting laws and practices.
This is the department`s first action to protect the voting rights
following the Shelby County decision, but it will not be our last.


WAGNER: The next step on the list could be North Carolina. The
legislature now controlled by Republicans for the first time in the century
is working on one of the most restricted voter ID laws in the nation. The
bill passed the state`s Senate yesterday and could disenfranchise more than
300,000 voters who don`t have the correct state issued IDs.

The North Carolina bill would also cut a week off early voting and end
same-day registration, which is actually popular in the state, even among

Joining me is North Carolina Democratic State Representative Alma
Adams and Ari Berman of "The Nation" magazine.

Representative Adams, I`d like to go to you, first. As we talk about
Texas and look towards North Carolina, the measures that are being proposed
are some of the most restricted in the country. And yet you look at the
numbers of people in North Carolina, 56 percent of the state votes early,
78 percent of North Carolinians support the current system, 75 percent say
they voted early.

Could this strategy not backfire on North Carolina Republicans?

STATE. REP. ALMA ADAMS (D), NORTH CAROLINA: Absolutely, because the
numbers that you mentioned are not just Democratic voters. And so yes, it
will impact all of the voters in our state regardless of party, whether
they`re unaffiliated. Every voter will be impacted. And particularly
those as you said, vote early.

A number of our citizens vote early. They like voting early. It is
convenient. They like voting on Sunday. It is convenient. And so, this
is going to have a tremendous impact. And I believe it is going to

WAGNER: Ari, you are I believe in Texas, where the redistricting is
somewhat shocking. And that is the first piece of legislation that the
attorney general seems to be working on, which is to say the electoral maps
that the committee has re-drawn.

And I just want to quote Think Progress on that vote rigging and that
redistricting. "A panel of federal judges found that substantial surgery
was done to predominantly black districts, cutting off representative
offices from their strong fundraising districts. Meanwhile, whites
Congress members` districts were either preserved or redraw to include
particularly country club and in one case, the school belonging to the
incumbent`s grand child. The new map was also drawn in secret by the white
Republican representatives without notifying their black and Latino peers."

I think the level -- I mean, we talk about gerrymandering and it`s
bandied about as sort of something that happens in a bipartisan fashion.
But the sort of racist underpinnings of this redistricting I think are
fairly shocking to most people and deplorable.

ARI BERMAN, THE NATION: Well, absolutely, Alex, that is why the
redistricting maps and the voter ID law passed by Texas last year were
blocked in the federal courts, in the same week, which is pretty much
anticipated. And Texas has become a poster child for voter suppression.
That`s why the attorney general is starting with Texas in terms of what
they`re going to do in a post-Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act world.

And you have a situation where there is a tremendous amount of change
in Texas, really at the forefront of demographic change. And that`s why
Republicans in Texas have done absolutely everything they can to try to
subvert that demographic change and to subvert the changing minority voting
power in the state right now.

WAGNER: Representative Adams, we know that there`s been a great
movement afoot in North Carolina, the moral Mondays. And there seems to be
real outrage over some of these restrictive measures, not just in terms of
voting rights but on a host of our issues. How are people in North
Carolina, how your constituents reacting to this proposal? And is there a
sense of indignation around it?

ADAMS: Well, people are absolutely upset about what is going on. And
they`re demonstrating their displeasure about that. On Moral Mondays they
are coming to the general assembly, en masse, thousands have come, almost
800 people have been arrested already. And this is really the last draw,
this voter intimidation act, which is exactly what we call it, because
that`s exactly what it does. We have not had an issue in North Carolina
with the voter fraud.

But this bill goes too, too far, and it creates all kinds of obstacles
for people. They`ve actually looked at the ways in which people have been
successful in turning out this vote. It targets various populations of
African-American population, of women, of students, all those people who
normally would vote and vote in large numbers, those are going to be the
citizens impacted.

And that was the part of the plan. Not just for North Carolina, but
we think it`s a national plan. We`re unhappy about it. I think our
constituents are unhappy, as well.

WAGNER: Ari, as the representative points out, this is part of sort
of a grand evil design, and it doesn`t just begin and end with voter
suppression effort. This is a concerted effort to make life difficult and
make voting hard and making the democratic process something that not
everybody is a part of.

In Texas, in legislative action, they include abortion restrictions --
sorry, North Carolina, 70,000 people have been cut from unemployment
benefits. There are have been changes made to the university, their cuts
to pre-K programs. I mean, this is systematic disenfranchising of a
certain section of the electorate, and effectively, once these
predominantly conservative politicians get elected to office, it`s very
hard to vote them out.

MELBER: Well, absolutely, Alex. And it really has been a four-step
plan for subverting democracy. The first thing you do is you win election
with huge corporate money, which is what Republicans in North Carolina did
in 2010 and 2012. The second thing you is gerrymandered in such an
egregious way so you can try to stay in power as long as possible. The
third thing you do is you pass a host of unpopular policies to benefit the
1 percent and hurt everybody else. And then make it harder for your
political opponents to vote you out of office based on those unpopular

And so, what the North Carolina Republicans are doing is so
transparent. It`s a blatant power grab. It can`t be seen as anything
else. And I do think it`s going to backfire because people are going to
see what is going on here and get motivated through Moral Mondays and
through other avenues and they`re going to vote these politicians out, I
think sooner than the politicians in power are expecting.

WAGNER: Well, all the more reason to watch what the attorney general
does with the Department of Justice.

Ari Berman of "The Nation" and North Carolina State Representative
Alma Adams, thanks so much for joining me tonight.

ADAMS: Thank you very much.

WAGNER: Coming up, Steven Colbert goes gaga over the royal baby name.

And Speaker John Boehner tells a member of his office to stop the
deeply offensive commentary. The GOP`s trouble with race is coming up.


WAGNER: Juror B-29 is the last woman from the all female jury in the
George Zimmerman murder trial that we are hearing from. She is the first
one to show her face. In an ABC News exclusive, the woman known as Maddy,
the only minority on the jury, speaks out for the first time in her
decision to acquit George Zimmerman in the murder of Trayvon Martin.


JUROR B-29: I stand by the decision because of the law. But if I
stand by the decision because of my heart, he would have been guilty.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: I know you have heard, some people have
said point blank, they said George Zimmerman got away with murder. How do
you respond to those people who say that?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: George Zimmerman got away with murder. But you
can`t get away from God.


WAGNER: Up next, the rights` trouble with race.



REP. STEVE KING (R), IOWA: For everyone who is a valedictorian, there
is another one out there who weighs 130 pounds and they have calves the
size of cantaloupes because they`re hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across
the desert.


WAGNER: In the spotlight tonight, Republicans and race. Today, young
undocumented immigrant delivered cantaloupes to Republican Steve King`s
congressional office.


the message to the immigration staffers to the congressman that his
comments are ridiculous. That I`m an undocumented students and I was
actually part of the ten percent highest grades. Our legs are not that
size of camel and even if they are, we`re not drug runners. We are here.
there is 11 million of us and we are here to stay because this is our home
and this is the United States America and we grow Americans (INAUDIBLE).


WAGNER: Today, house speaker John Boehner made absolutely clear what
he thinks about congressman King`s views on young, undocumented immigrants
who may be granted a path to citizenship under the dream act.


there is no place in this debate for hateful or ignorant comments from
elected officials. Earlier this week, representative Steve king made
comments that I think were deeply offensive and wrong. What he said does
not reflect the valuing of the American people or the Republican party.
And we all need to do our work in a constructive, open and respectful way.
As I`ve said many times we can disagree without being disagreeable.


WAGNER: A reporter asked speaker Boehner whether comments like Steve
King`s will make it more difficult to pass immigration reform in the house.


BOEHNER: If it does make it more difficult. But I`m going to
continue to work with members who want to get to a solution as opposed to
those who want to do nothing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE REPORTER: To be clear, you were saying his comment
makes it more difficult.

BOEHNER: Of course.


WAGNER: Two hours later, Steve King went on the house floor and said


KING: That is what I`m advocating for, Mr. Speaker. I want the most
logical, rational policy. And I think we need a policy that is right for
America. I have an obligation to preserve, protect and defend the
constitution of the United States. And represent my constituents and
represent my state, and represent my country. And all of those things
should be compatible with each other and I believe they are. And I have
not found myself in a conflict here between them.


WAGNER: Sixty-nine percent of Steve King`s constituents in Iowa`s
fourth congressional district want comprehensive immigration reform, 59
percent support a pathway to permanent residence for undocumented
immigrants under the age of 15, including 51 percent of Republicans and 50
percent of those who call themselves very conservative.

Joining me now, MSNBC`s Joy Reid and David Corn, Washington bureau
chief of "Mother Jones" and an MSNBC political analyst.

Joy, I was actually impressed with speaker Boehner`s comments today.
At least her is acknowledging that hateful comments that Steve King had
made. And yet, Steve King remains unbowed. Let`s hear what he says about
child smugglers.


KING: But I can tell you this, 80 90 percent of illegal drugs
consumed in America come from or through Mexico. I can tell you that in
Mexico they are recruiting kids to be drug smugglers, between ages of 11
and 18, the media is replete with this. Anybody who reads the paper should
know, especially those who live on the border should know that there are
many, many young people coming across the border unlawfully who are
smuggling drugs into the United States.


WAGNER: Joy, the reasoning there seems to be there are drug
smugglers, therefore they must all be dreamers. I mean, there is in
connection actually between the statistics he is spouting off and any
linkage to the dreamers.

Republican party lost 72 percent of the Latino vote. I can`t figure it
out. And the thing -- even when he is not speaking, and doubling down on
the cantaloupe calves, I mean, it is insanity. Listen, if all African-
Americans are murdered, all Hispanics are illegal immigrants and drug
mules, all gays are just bad, bad, and women should be baby machines. The
Republican party is going to die if they don`t weed out this frosting of
evil that is on the top of riddled used to be a relatively sane cake.

WAGNER: You know, David Corn, Joy refers to this as a frosting of
evil. But in "Mother Jones," you guys have a really compelling piece about
the underground Republican coalition called "groundswell." And if only, it
were just a frosting of evil, I mean, what you have is liquid molten center
of conservative hatred that is so extreme. And you detail this in a piece
in the "Mother Jones." They are intent on taking down Karl Rove, John
McCain, and Lindsey Graham, who are seen as traitors to the party.

caramel at the center of the story. Yes, we broke a story on "Mother
Jones" and read it, about the leader of the group called "groundswell."
One of the leaders is Genie Thomas (ph). Allan West, Frank Gaffney and
others are part of this. And they`re coming up with coordinated messages
and points and strategies to take them on, not just the Democrats and
progressive out, But also Karl Rove and Republican party establishment
because they think they are squishy and far too moderate.

But I have to tell you because we are talking about race and politics
here, that even, even the people on this far right band of folks, I will be
polite here, who know that they have a race problem, problem with minority
voters. And we put out a lot of documents. Let me just, if I may, read
from one right now in which they say this is from a February 28th meeting
of groundswell.

They write, we are failing the propaganda battle with minorities.
Terms like GOP, tea party, conservative, communicate racism. Now, listen,
this was their answer. They wanted to press a, you know, put forward a new
twitter hash tag. A new term, they wanted to put this into play.
Frederick Douglass Republicans.

WAGNER: And I believe, David, in that memo, they spell the name
Frederick Douglass wrong which is basically, That`s all you need to know.

CORN: They got Fredrick and Douglass wrong. But they realize there
is a problem. But they think coming up with a fancy buzzie twitter hash
tag will solve it for them.

WAGNER: Well and that is -- I mean, that was so -- what they are
doing is offensive, Joy. But their sort of mechanics to fix the problem
are even more offensive in a lot of ways. I mean, this is RNC chair,
Reince Priebus, on the Christian Broadcasting Network earlier this week
responding to questions about whether the Christian right should be
concerned that Priebus has called on Republicans to be more tolerant.


all, I don`t know if I would use the word "tolerant." I`m sort of I don`t
care for the word myself. I don`t have a problem and I just think it has
another meaning politically that can go the other direction.


WAGNER: I mean, tolerance now is a four-letter word in the Republican

REID: I just -- I mean, co-exist used to be the word they hated.
Remember when Alan West said, why co-exist with Muslims? We can`t do that.
The problem with the Republican party isn`t the twitter hash tags are not
cool enough, the problem is them. But you know, certain words you have to
like look in the mirror and say you know it is me, it is the things I see.
It is the fact that they have had 30, 30-plus years of right-wing talk
radio that is now (INAUDIBLE) on their TV, on to their Internet.
Everything about the core o their message, rather than being about politics
is about hating everybody who doesn`t look like them.

WAGNER: It is divisive and it is fear-based. And David, you know,
what is striking to me about the Groundswell piece is, you know, on some
level, what is want to dismiss these people as fringes and frosting, but
the talking points that are circulating. For example, immigration reform,
Groundswell member saw immigration as a life or death issue. If we lose on
immigration, the post meeting memo noted, we lose on every issue. The
messaging on this issue has to be we can`t trust Obama to enforce
immigration laws after the amnesty. That is exactly hook, line, and
sinker. The line that Republicans in Congress have been giving to the
public as to why they can`t have comprehensive reform.

CORN: You know, a lot of politics is about the use of language and
the presentation of ideas. And so you have this group, "Groundswell" and
you have people on the left doing this. you have Grover Norquist group
doing it every Wednesday morning as well trying to come up with the best
language to convey their ideas.

Now, often what we saw on this piece is that they are looking for ways
to really come up with spin to cover major problems. And one memo that we
published today, they say we have to convey things on the fourth grade
level. That is what they think of voters. And they have to come up with
silly terms like Frederick Douglass Republicans? And they, you have Reince
Priebus, and you know, that he can`t say the word "tolerance." And yet,
they still think he is far too moderate. And all of these memos we fought
a lot antagonism towards him, the party (INAUDIBLE) and Karl Rove even for
saying listen, this party has to be perhaps less strident to appeal to more
people. So, the party itself, Republican party still have this civil war
within a train, some of these social issues and so with this race related
issue that they just can`t work out because there are a lot, I think,
haters within their own ranks.

WAGNER: Well, I mean, it is shocking to me that in the meantime, the
proclamation don`t stop getting issue with Rand Paul, Joy today, who said I
don`t think or yesterday, I don`t there is anyone in Congress who has a
stronger belief in minority rights than I do. I mean, it is -- from almost
anybody in the Republican Party that would be a questionable statement.
From him, it is downright insulting.

REID: It is insulting because the problem is that you have had two
successive presidential campaigns, in which the presidential campaign on
the Republican side has decided to try to resist the talk machine. And not
have that run the policy. But now they have just given up. What you have
is that the right wing fringe is now enforcing the discipline on the normal

So, you have people who were classically deal makers like John
Boehner, and even Mitch McConnell, whose whole career has been about deal-
making, they`re having this discipline enforced on them. So, Republican
politics itself is hostage to this fringe. And these crazy people are
making the rules and they are dragging everyone further to the right. And
Genie Thomas, by the way, if she is asking her husband, Clarence, for
guidance, good luck with that.

WAGNER: Yes, well. And if Clarence Thomas is asking Genie Thomas for
guidance, though, we see where that leads. The caramel center has over
taken the cake.

Joy Reid and David Corn, thank you both for your time tonight.

REID: Thank you.

CORN: Thank you.

WAGNER: Coming up, Steven Colbert`s unique take on the royal baby`s


WAGNER: Your royal baby fever may have broken, but Steven Colbert`s
has not. Especially now that we have a name. His royal highness, prince
George Alexander Louis of Cambridge. The last king, George, was George VI,
William`s great grandfather who battled with speech impediment, who was
depicted in the Oscar-winning movie, "the King`s speech." People have
speculated that Alexander may have been a preference of Kate. The full
name of the queen herself is Elizabeth Alexandria Mary. And Louis is also
one of Prince William`s four names.

But die hard royal watcher Stephen Colbert says none of that has
anything to do with the royal nomenclature.


good to have you with us. As you can tell, I`m still in the throes of
royal baby fever, which has me worried because you`re supposed to starve a
royal baby cold and feed a royal baby fever and I do not want to eat
English food. Me and the royal baby have so much in common in that both of
our Fontanelles (ph) are not closed yet. Of course, once the heir arrived
here was only one question on every newsman`s mind, how long is this still
news? The answer, of course, until we get a baby name, damn it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Britain`s new prince is named prince George of
Cambridge. The royal baby`s full name is George Alexander Louis.

COLBERT: There is going to be another king George. That makes me
want to establish our independence all over again, who is crazy? Who peed
blue? Georgy? Well, folks, there is a lot of speculation over what these
names would be, but I for one am not surprised. Because as a royal watcher
I know that Will and Kate are huge fans of Seinfeld. And clearly, named
the baby for George Costanza , who is played by Jason Alexander, and Julia-
Louis-Dreyfuss, because just like Seinfeld, the English royal family is
really about nothing.


WAGNER: Coming up, Anthony Weiner and therapy.


WAGNER: Senate majority leader Harry Reid thinks Hillary Clinton
would make a better president than her husband. Reid appeared on last
night`s "News Hour" on PBS, saying that Hillary Clinton may have a bigger
fan, I just don`t know what it would be. I think what she did as a senator
and what she did as a secretary of state will go down in history books as a
remarkable job that she did. I, of course, had such admiration for the
president. Remember, I the last three or four year he was here, we reduced
the debt and created 22 million jobs, pretty good deal. And I think that
they`re a pretty good team. But she will handle things probably even
better than he did.

Up next, compulsion, addiction, or something else? And can Anthony
Weiner actually get help for it?



some of these people that we are talking about here is reprehensible, it is
so disrespectful of women. And what is really stunning about it is they
don`t even realize it. You know, they don`t have a clue. And it is really
-- if they`re clueless, get a clue. And if they need therapy, do it in


WAGNER: Nancy Pelosi minced no words today when asked about the
scandals involving San Diego mayor, Bob Filner, and former congressman
Anthony Weiner. Weiner has said he started to see a therapist after the
scandal broke in 2011.

Here is how Weiner answered the question about his treatment at a
campaign event this morning in Brooklyn.


ANTHONY WEINER, I sought help, I got help. I sought the help of my
wife. And like problems that people have, this one, thankfully, is behind
me. And this one has not occurred again --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Do your view this as an addiction?

WEINER: I don`t believe that it is -- people that I`m working with
don`t believe that it is. And I`ll leave it, you know, I did something
that I want, you know, I want to have privacy between me and the people
that are offering me this help. But the answer is no.


WAGNER: Joining me now is sex therapist is Dr. Mike Dow, host of
"Logo, that sex show."

Doctor Dow, do thanks for joining us. I want to ask you first about
the question of addiction. I mean, Anthony Weiner, the letters, the woman
who has come out publicly this evening has told inside edition that she had
phone sex with Anthony Weiner at least twice a week and the relationship
lasted for six months. Anthony Weiner said there were six as to ten,
possibly women, involved in this. Does this strike you as addictive

DOCTOR MIKE DOW, SEX THERAPIST: Listen Alex, I think there are many
hallmarks of addiction here. We have the file of list. I think what is
important here, we have the worsening consequences over an amount of time.
This is somebody, a politician who has already lost a job. He may be
losing a marriage. So yes, I think we clearly see signs that do point to
sex addiction in this case.

WAGNER: Insofar as we see he can`t seem to stop himself from
conduction destructive behavior. Is that what you were saying?

DOW: Absolutely. When somebody has that amount of consequences on
the line and they are still unable to with withdraw from the behavior or
stop the behavior, then, it is one hallmark that we look at when assessing
for sex addiction.

WAGNER: In her interview tonight, Sydney Leathers told Inside edition
about Weiner being controlling. And I think this is interesting, take a


controlling with me towards the end.


LEATHERS: He would tell me that he would be jealous, he would look at
my facebook frequently and he would tell me that he would get jealous if
other men would compliment me, and just little stuff like that.


WAGNER: Sidney also revealed that she never had Anthony Weiner`s
phone number. That he would call from a blocked number, but he, of course,
had hers. He was in control of this thing, and as she said, he was a bit
controlling. What does that tell you about his psychological profile?

DOW: Well, it tells me this is a man who likes power. And listen,
one of the assessment criteria for sex addicts anonymous is using some
coercion to get what they want, namely sex. It is very -- it is a huge red
flag to me that this woman didn`t have the number of the man that she was
having phone sex with. That there were a lot of women. So, this could be
somebody who likes the power, and that power is not necessarily linked with
intimacy and healthy adult relationship.

WAGNER: I want to ask about this therapy. Weiner revealed in a "New
York Times" magazine profile in April that he started seeing a therapist
who is a woman in 2011 when the scandal broke. But, this is what he said
about the conversation with his therapist.

It is none of, sorry. It is none of the easy stuff, she did tell me
you have a sex addiction. You were abused -- she didn`t tell me you had a
sex addiction, you were abused as a child. None of that stuff which in a
lot of ways that kind of prefer. It is an easy explanation that people
intuitively get.

I wonder, you know, she is obviously struck up the sexting again, you
know, what are the expectations of a therapist in this situation? Is it
usual or unusual to fall off the wagon as he seemed to have done.

DOW: Well, relax is very common in all forms of addiction whether we
are talking about a process addiction, something like sex addiction in this
case, or a more chemical, traditional addiction, most people think of like
alcohol or drugs. So yes, relax is very common in all these cases.

However, I would say when you have that amount of power or when you`re
in the public spotlight, you clearly need to be seeking treatment to the
point where you`re getting your behavior under control. And I clearly
think we see that in this case he was not getting enough therapy or he was
not getting the standard of care that he was needing. Because clearly,
there are clearly more consequences and some really problematic behaviors.

WAGNER: Dr. Mike Dow gets tonight`s "last Word."

I`m Alex Wagner, in for Lawrence O`Donnell.

Chris Hayes is up next.


Copyright 2013 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by
United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed,
transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written
permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark,
copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>