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PoliticsNation, Monday, August 26th, 2013

Read the transcript from the Monday show

August 26, 2013

Guests: Floyd McKissick, James Peterson, Goldie Taylor, Heidi Beirich, Eric Schneiderman

AL SHARPTON, MSNBC HOST, "POLITICS NATION": Thanks to you for tuning
in. I`m live tonight in Washington, D.C. Tonight`s lead, driving back the
GOP`s anti-voting drive. One of the most respected Republicans is slamming
his party for trying to restrict voting rights. And he is issuing this


that are being put in place to slow the process down and make it likely
that fewer Hispanics and African-Americans might vote I think are going to
backfire because these people are going to come out and do what they have
to do in order to vote. And I encourage that.


SHARPTON: So Colin Powell says it`s going to backfire, that people
will come out and vote. Well, they came out this weekend. You could see
it. You could feel it. The parks department says some 178,000 people used
the city`s metro system, most to go to the rally and march. We came out to
retrace the steps of Dr. King and others, and to say we will fight for our
right to vote.


REP. JOHN LEWIS (D), GEORGIA: I gave of blood on that bridge in
Selma, Alabama, for the right to vote. I am not going to stand by and let
the Supreme Court take the right to vote away from us. You cannot stand
by. You cannot sit down. You`ve got to stand up, speak up, speak out, and
get in the way, make some noise.

SHARPTON: They`re coming with all these schemes, voter ID. Well, we
always had ID. Why do we need new ID now? We had id when we voted for
Johnson. We had ID when we voted for Nixon. We had ID when we voted for
those that succeed him -- Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush again. Why
when we get to Obama do we need some special ID?


SHARPTON: The Justice Department is already suing Texas to stop its
new voter ID law and reports say that North Carolina`s extreme voting
restrictions will likely be next in line for Attorney General Eric Holder,
who also spoke on Saturday.


ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: We must remember generations who
carry themselves on a day-to-day basis with great dignity in the face of
unspeakable injustice. But for them, I would not be attorney general of
the United States and Barack Obama would not be president of the United
States of America. This struggle must and will go on in the cause of our
nation`s quest for justice. Until every eligible American has the chance
to exercise his or her right to vote, unencumbered by discriminatory or
unneeded procedures, rules, or practices.


SHARPTON: The thousands who came out this weekend are ready to
continue that quest for justice.


SHARPTON: We`re on our way to North Carolina. We`re on our way to
Texas. We`re on our way to Florida. And when they ask us for our voter
ID, take out a photo of Medgar Evers, take out a photo of Goodman, Chaney
and Schwerner, take out a photo of Viola Louisa. They gave their lives so
we could vote. Look at this photo. It gives you the idea of who we are.


SHARPTON: When this march was called, it was called to continue to
fight to make the dream of Dr. King a reality. When Martin Luther King
III, the National Action Network and I said we knew thousands would come,
those numbers came. But now the march is over. We will have the
commemoration Wednesday. Then we head to the field to do the work. Watch
out, North Carolina. A lot of people are going to deal with this issue
because voter rights is not a partisan issue, it`s a people issue. It`s a
citizen issue.

And joining me now are North Carolina State Senator Floyd McKissick,
James Peterson and Goldie Taylor. Thanks for joining me.




SHARPTON: Let me start with you State Senator McKissick. You`ve been
fighting the voting law in North Carolina. Colin Powell says it will
backfire. What are you seeing on the ground?

MCKISSICK: Well, I hope Colin Powell is correct. I mean, I hope it
will be able to march all the troops to make certain people for Monday here
in North Carolina, get simply three to 6,000 people killed up Monday after
Monday while we were in session is, go throughout the state to the most
important districts that there are and that we can get people out to vote.
And I feel very confident that we can. There is litigation that has been
filed in federal court and in state court, basically attacking all these
voter suppression practices that have been implemented.

The decrease of the early voting period by a week. Back in 2008, we
had over 700,000 people killed in the first week of early voting. In 2012
with an increase buying an additional 12,000 people, 900 thousand people
killed up. Those people won`t have that right when this comes the forth
next time at the next election cycle. There is a multitude of things that
have changed. Same day voter registration. Not allowing college students
to go out there and vote if they have gotten preregistered in the state and
will be 18 by the period, the time of the general election.

SHARPTON: Let people understand what these new voter laws say. It`s
the new voter ID law in North Carolina is a strict voting ID requirement.
It eliminates same-day voter re registration. Cuts early voting by a week.
Stops extended polling hours in the event of long lines. No matter how
long the line, cut the line, close the booths. Increase the numbers of
poll observers, and bans preregistration for 16 and 17-year-olds. I mean
this is probably the most regressive that we`ve seen, Senator.

MCKISSICK: It is. It`s a poster child of the very worst voting
practices the United States of America. And if you have a republican-
controlled legislature, it could be coming soon to a legislature near you.
It even disallows people who vote in the wrong precinct. Sometimes people
go to the wrong precinct because they moved. Sometimes the precinct lines
have changed. If they used to if they went in and cast a provisional
ballot, it was counted. Now those provisional ballots will no longer be
counted either.

SHARPTON: Now, Goldie, when you look at the fact that even Supreme
Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg told "The New York Times" the Supreme
Court decisions is one of the most activists she has ever seen, and she has
specifically cited the gutting of the voting rights act, saying the
decision was stunning in terms of activism.

TAYLOR: Well, certainly stunning to me to see that, you know, to see
it gutted in that way, and to say that we did not need precertification
anymore because some states had made so-called strides over the years where
we watched those very same state, the states that were recovered under the
voting rights act in precertification, we watched them at the stroke of the
pen begin drafting more regressive voter suppression laws in their states
to say that we need to strip away a civics program for high school students
which teaches them about public engagement and how to be involved in their
government and how to take their voice to the voting booth, to strip that
away, to make it so the 16 and 17-year-olds, your children and mine cannot
preregister to vote, to get them involved in the process earlier.

To say that we are going to focus our attention on students, on racial
minorities, and on the elderly. Key constituencies that happen to lean
more democrat in their voting preferences, to focus your attention on them
I think says that we need to relook at precertification and I`m glad that
Attorney General Holder has begin to make a move in Texas. And I hope that
he will make a move also in North Carolina.

SHARPTON: Now Professor Peterson, the Republican National Committee
today held its commemoration of the march on Washington. And republican
Congressman James Sensenbrenner said he will fight to restore the voting
rights act. This is a republican congressman. Listen to this.


REP. JAMES SENSENBRENNER (R), WISCONSIN: I am committed to restoring
the voting rights act as an effective tool to prevent discrimination. I`m
a mechanic. And my job is to fix the voting rights act. Now, the first
thing we have to do is to take the monkey wrench that the court threw in
out of the voting rights act.


SHARPTON: Now, as he says that, James, you have the chairman of the
party, Priebus, which hosted the event today. He is on record defending
voter ID laws, saying, quote, "Voter identification laws are common sense
and an effective way to combat election fraud." I don`t know how you
commemorate the march on Washington and "I Have a Dream" speech where Dr.
King talks about governors lips speaking with nullification and at the same
time can`t join Colin Powell and Sensenbrenner in saying, you`ve got
correct the voting rights act which was gutted by this Supreme Court.

PETERSON: That`s exactly right, Rev. Reince Priebus is a politico.
He`s not a policymaker here. And here, obviously not interested in the
commemoration or the continuation of the spirit and the hard work of the
march on Washington. And obviously what we`re seeing in states like North
Carolina, Texas, and other states has just been really, really tragic in a
lot of different and interesting ways. I think at the end of the day,
we`ve got to try to fight this on two fronts. We do need to press the
Wisconsin senator and his colleagues to restore preclearance and actually
expand the map of preclearance.

We need to expand the states and municipalities that are included in
the preclearance measure of what used to be section five of the voting
rights act. A lot of legal experts were suggesting that the use of section
two might not be as effective for voter ID laws. It`s been very, very
effective in terms for discriminatory practices and redistricting. But not
so effective yet in terms of voter ID laws. So we need the Congress to act
here. We need the Republicans and Democrats in Congress to work to restore
section five and really expand the map for preclearance so that we can make
sure we`re expanding our democracy.

SHARPTON: Now, Senator McKissick, I want to show you a picture,
because you more than anyone understand what a lot of us are talking about
what a lot of us are talking about this weekend. This is a photograph of
your father, Floyd McKissick Senior at the march on Washington 50 years
ago. And he was at the side of Martin Luther King, Jr., he represented
CORE. The national president and chair of CORE at the time was James
Farmer couldn`t make the march because he was in jail in Louisiana for a

Your father stood in his place and then later succeeded him as
chairman of core. So you`re not only fighting in North Carolina as a state
legislator, you grew up in the family of one of those that represented the
six convening organizations 50 years ago.

MCKISSICK: Yes. And it`s a wonderful to be a part of that legacy. I
mean, they all fought 50 years ago for the voting rights act, came the
voting rights act. And we`ve seen people in this country be able to
exercise that privilege in increasing numbers. We`ve seen many African-
American and women`s elected to public office. But it`s sad to see what
the Supreme Court has done recently.

Because with section five eventually being made null and void until
Congress does something, and Congress is at a stalemate, I`m afraid that we
could see a reversal in terms of those that are holding public offices and
return to the types of practices which existed before there was
preclearance under section five of those practices which in the past had
been used to deprive African-American and others of the right to vote.

SHARPTON: Senator, we have another son, Martin Luther King III, he
and I pledge we are coming to North Carolina. And we know Reverend William
Barber and others are doing a great job in a huge coalition that needs to
even have national support even more I should say, because they have some.
And I think it is important that people understand, we`re talking about
people`s basic right to vote. It is almost unthinkable that we`re debating
in 2013 stopping people from voting. That`s why we need to hit the ground
hard in North Carolina when they come with these kind of regressive
unthinkable laws that your father thought they solved in that generation.

MCKISSICK: Absolutely. And it`s wonderful to have people like you
championing those efforts. And we welcome all the help we can get. As I
say, North Carolina has become a poster child of this country for voter
suppression. And wee we need to reverse it. We need to make it the
example in this country of what we can do to reverse that conservative tide
and put those people back in office by building the type of multiracial
coalitions that have been successful in transforming the south.

SHARPTON: How do we go around the world, preaching about democracy,
Goldie, and we`re not practicing full use of democracy in North Carolina
and Texas and Florida and on and on.

TAYLOR: Well, in fact, you know, that challenges, you know, our
credibility around the world. You know, if we can stop certain people from
engaging in the process and violate the real sanctity of the ballot. If we
can keep those people away from the poll who are not likely to vote for us,
then we have won the day. And so, we can`t let them win the day. If we
can reverse this tide, Georgia can be won.


TAYLOR: Texas can be won. There are other state senators, then up
for grabs. But, you know, the GOP knows this. They know that the country
is growing demographically against their tide. And so they are doing
anything and everything possible to keep certain people away from the

SHARPTON: Well, we`ve got to make sure all people can go to the polls
with no impediments.

TAYLOR: Absolutely.

SHARPTON: State Senator Floyd McKissick, Goldie Taylor, James
Peterson, thanks for your time tonight.

TAYLOR: Thank you, Reverend Sharpton.

PETERSON: Thank you, Reverend Sharpton.

SHARPTON: One program night. This Wednesday night at 8:00 p.m.,
MSNBC will air Dr. Martin Luther King`s "I Have a Dream" speech in its
entirety. That`s a special broadcast of the whole speech, Wednesday, 8:00,
on "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES." It will be a special show. Please tune in.

Ahead, is right-wing Senator Ted Cruz actually President Obama`s
secret weapon? Why Cruz`s mission to destroy Obamacare is actually
dragging Republicans down?

Plus, a stunning new report says a white supremacist prison gang is
threatening republican officials that report coming up.

And Donald Trump sued for fraud. New York`s Attorney General drops a
$40 million lawsuit against the Donald. It`s real, and we`ll speak live to
the man who filed the lawsuit.

And what is on your mind? E-mail me. Friend or foe, I want to know.
"Reply Al" is ahead.


SHARPTON: We`re back with a stunning new report about a hate group
targeting public officials. In April, we reported to you about a Colorado
prison chief, Tom Clements, who was murdered at his home. The suspect,
Evan Ebel, a 28-year-old white supremacist who was thought to have
connection with a prison gang 211 crew was gun down, gun down in a wild car
chase following the murder.

Now the Denver Post is reporting the same notorious white supremacist
gang has ordered a hit on an El Paso County judge who signed search
warrants in the Clements murder investigation. The source verified details
of the investigation, including allegations that the assassination of
Clements was ordered by leaders of the white supremacist prison gang. And
the group is also reportedly targeting elected officials.

Investigators reportedly discovered a list in Ebel`s belongings
identifying Clements and other officials as possible targets, including
Governor John Hickenlooper who has been under special protection since
Clements was killed. There is a real history of violence from these groups
and has not been contained by prison walls.

Joining me now is Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Thank you for being here tonight.


SHARPTON: Now, this new report is disturbing. A white supremacist
gang targeting elected officials. What can you tell us about this group?

BEIRICH: Well, they`ve been around since 1995. There was a major
indictment of about 38 members of the 211 crew in 2005 for a whole host of
crimes. Led to some very long prison sentences. We know that Department
of Corrections officials say there are about a thousand of these folks, and
many members have been involved in violence, including a nasty hate crime
in 1997 where a black man was gunned down, and the perpetrator who was a
211 crewmember said he killed him because he was quote, unquote, "wearing
the enemy`s uniform," meaning the color of his skin. Now they`re going
after officials. This is scary stuff.

SHARPTON: Now, you know, these are prison gangs. But the fact that
they wield power outside of prison walls is most disturbing. Quoting from
the report, quote, "The informants told jail supervisors that 211
crewmembers also were sending out orders to other paroled gang members,
instructing them to commit new crimes or violate parole rules so they could
return to prison and strengthen their ranks behind bars." I mean this is
serious stuff.

BEIRICH: Yes, we`re finding increasingly that white supremacist
prison gangs like the 211 crew are operation outside of the prisons as much
as inside the prisons, and they`re involved in, you know, every bit of
criminal activity you can imagine. They also funnel things back into the
prisons. And in the case of the 211 crew, this apparently involves hit
lists and already, you know, one murder of a DOC official there in

This has been happening in many, many places in the country that
prison gangs when people get paroled, get let out of prison, continue those
activities outside the walls as they call it. And we`re just -- we`re
seeing more and more of this kind of activity, major indictments of prison
gangs in many states because of this problem of the, you know, sort of the
criminality just leaking out and the white supremacy leaking out.

SHARPTON: Now you`re, saying you`re seeing more and more of these
kind of gangs in prisons. Because we have covered many prison gangs in the
past like the Aryan Brotherhood in Texas. They were formed in the `80s in
state prisons, and they were modeled after the California gang founded in
San Quentin. They have about 2,000 members in Texas prisons. Members
tattoo themselves with neo-Nazi symbols. I mean why 211 crew and the Aryan
Brotherhood are not affiliated, they do share similarities, don`t they?

BEIRICH: That is absolutely true. I mean, they both share, you know,
certain white supremacist beliefs. Their Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, Aryan
Brotherhood which is originally from California, 211 crew, groups like the
European kindred are involved in the same kinds of criminal activities
inside and outside the walls, pose many of the same threats. And like I
said, this is an expand problem. More and more members of these groups,
more and more outside the wall`s activities.

SHARPTON: Now, your organization, the Southern Poverty Law Center,
estimates that since 2000 the number of hate groups have gone up 67
percent. Nearly 70 percent increase in these hate groups. I mean, this is
a real concern, Heidi.

BEIRICH: It`s absolutely horrible. Yes. In 2000 we counted 602 hate
groups. Our last count from about a year ago was 1,007. I mean, there has
been a real movement of organizing among white supremacists in the United
States. And that`s reflected in those numbers. And unfortunately we don`t
see anything to have them go down. I mean, it`s just been kind of an
unending rise for over a decade now.

SHARPTON: Now, they influenced both outside and inside the jail, even
though they`re prison-based. How do they do this, and how do you explain

BEIRICH: Well, for white supremacist prison gangs, they make sure
that there is a blood in, blood out system. You get sucked into the gang
when you`re in the prison. When you get out of the prison, the only way
you`re going get out is if you`re murdered. You have to basically play by
their rules and continue to do the business that the gangs want you to do.
It`s a very scary situation. You know, oftentimes people who are killed
are actual other members of the prison gangs who aren`t playing by the
rules. So, that`s how they keep, you know, and enforce order.

SHARPTON: Heidi Beirich, thanks for your time tonight.

BEIRICH: Thank you, Reverend.

SHARPTON: Ahead, Ted Cruz is on a crusade to sink Obamacare. But is
he actually killing his own party?

And Donald Trump sued for fraud. His Trump University allegedly took
advantage of students. The amazing details are coming with the man who
filed the suit, New York`s Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.


SHARPTON: Rush Limbaugh goes ugly again.


RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Every despot in the world has
had some version of nationalized health care. As a means of gaining
control over his population. Hitler did it. They`ve all do it. Idi -- I
mean they all do, Mao Sickle (ph), they all do it, Castro.


SHARPTON: But Limbaugh isn`t the only one leading Republicans down
and ugly self defeating path. Senator Ted Cruz, you`re up next.


SHARPTON: The President has a new best friend, and his name is
Senator Ted Cruz. Yes, that Ted Cruz, the same right winger who is trying
to single-handedly destroy health care.


SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: Now is the single best time to stop
Obamacare. And I believe if we see a grassroots tsunami, that is going to
cause Republicans and Democrats to listen to the people. But it`s going to
take a tsunami. It is going to take a tsunami, and I`m going to do
everything I can to encourage that tsunami.


SHARPTON: So why do I think Mr. Tsunami is the President`s new best
buddy? Because he is destroying the GOP. His relentless mission to defund
the health care law is tearing the party apart. The party is completely


CRUZ: Now is the single best time to stop Obamacare.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Shutting down the government is a suicidal
political tactic.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: The American people shouldn`t fund it. And so
that`s what I intend to do.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I think there are more effective ways of achieving
that goal.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: How can you be against Obamacare, but
vote for a budget that funds its implementation?

kid ourselves. We`ll be blamed. This is the one strategy, the one tactic
that might be able to guarantee that the Democrats pick up seats in the
Congress in 2014.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: It`s not a debacle to shut down the government.
Even if you don`t have a chance to stop it, why not make a stand, tell
people who you are?


SHARPTON: That`s not exactly one big happy family now, is it? And
now Tea Party activists are planning a rally outside of Speaker John
Boehner`s office, vowing they will rebrand President Obama`s healthcare law
Boehner care if he does not defund the legislation. And not only are they
at war with each other, they`re at war with their constituents. Sixty
percent have a negative impression of lawmakers who are making it harder to
implement the law. So thanks, Mr. Cruz. The President and Democrats,
thank you.

Joining me now are Abby Huntsman and Joe Madison. Thank you both for
coming on the show tonight.


ABBY HUNTSMAN, MSNBC CO-HOST, "THE CYCLE": Thanks for having us.

MADISON: Thank you, Reverend.

SHARPTON: Abby, let me start with you. Do you think the GOP`s
obsession with healthcare is hurting the party?

HUNTSMAN: It`s absolutely hurting the party. It`s hurting the party
for some time now. Because as you were saying, it divides the party. I
mean, you have the establishment now saying guys, this is not a fight worth
fighting. This is not a fight we`re going win. You have Senator Ted Cruz
who is trying to own this issue and rallying up the base of the party.
Still very fired up about Obamacare. You know, you look at someone like
Ted Cruz and you think, you know, being smart doesn`t necessarily lead to
common sense. You know, this is a guy who is Ivy League educated. He is
someone that understands this isn`t going anywhere.

He understands that he doesn`t have the votes. He understands that
they don`t have the signatures.


HUNTSMAN: I think they have 14 signatures in the Senate right now
which paints a pretty clear picture about the outcome of all of this. And
you`re even seeing governors around the country, folks that are just like
Ted Cruz that don`t like Obamacare would rather not have it in place. But
they recognize that they have to govern a state. And governing a state
means making the lives of the people in their state better. So, they are
now implementing parts of Obamacare. Even Governor Rick Perry is doing
such a thing.


HUNTSMAN: So, that`s just the reality of it. I think Ted Cruz is --

SHARPTON: And Brewer as well in Arizona.


SHARPTON: You know, Joe, you know, my mother used to say common sense
isn`t that common. Look at the fact that this single minded obsession with
killing health care is hurting the party. Just 19 percent identified
themselves as republican. That`s down nine points since last fall. And
the party itself is against the idea of shutting down the government in
order to defund healthcare. This is party members. Fifty three percent of
Republicans oppose the plan. Just 37 percent support it.

MADISON: And let`s add this fact too. That I think you need about
7.5 million to, you know, to sign up. And already at least according to
statistics in 19 states I believe it is, they`re at four million people who
are ready to sign up and ready to take on health care. So quite honestly,
to sit up here and say the need is a tsunami, you`re absolutely right.
You`re going to have two tsunamis to stop this. And once it gets started,
people are going to realize the benefit. Some people are getting checks
right now. And they understand this is going to benefit. So Ted Cruz to
shut down the government, and here is what people needs to understand.
They`re going to shut down everything but their paychecks.

SHARPTON: Right. Well, you know, Abby, you talked about having
common sense. I wonder if he is cracking up. Because he says we don`t
know -- listen to him say it, because you`re not going to believe it. He
says he doesn`t know if the president will defund his own law. Listen to


CRUZ: Funding it if it doesn`t happen now it`s likely never to
happen. The President is never going to sign a bill that defunds
Obamacare. You know, you may be convinced it.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: You`re not convinced of that?

CRUZ: I`m not convinced of that.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: This is what they consider his signature
achievement so far of his administration in its fifth year.


SHARPTON: I mean, is he listening to the same President Obama as me?
I mean, he has been hammering GOP for attacking health care. Take a


PRES. BARACK OBAMA (D), UNITED STATES: Maybe they think it`s good
politics, but part of our job here is not to always think about politics.
I think the really interesting question is why it is that my friends in the
other party have made the idea of preventing these people from getting
health care their holy grail, their number one priority, we can`t afford in
Washington the usual circus of distractions and political posturing.


SHARPTON: Now, you know, how important do you think the President is
pushing in on these Republicans, Abby?

HUNTSMAN: You know, he is exactly right. This is politics. I mean,
what we`re seeing with Ted Cruz is just simply his own political ambition
that is taking total control of everything he is doing. I mean, you look
at, you know, in trying to own this issue of defunding Obamacare when he
knows very well it`s not getting anywhere, he is thinking if I can own
this, if we can make some moves on Obamacare, then I`m going to have a lot
to stand on come year 2014 even into the, you know, 2016 primaries. He is
really thinking about himself. He is thinking about his own future.

You know, what he doesn`t have, though, is he has never governed. He
has never governed a state when you look at governors that are now looking
at this a little bit differently, they know what it means to lead a state.
They know what it means to compromise, they know what it means to bring
ideas together, to ultimately make the lives of the people better. This is
something that Ted Cruz has never had to do. So he is obviously just
thinking about himself here.


HUNTSMAN: And ultimately, hurting the party along the way.

SHARPTON: Joe, you know the President says that he really slammed the
GOP, saying they care more about what Rush Limbaugh thinks than about the
American people. Listen to this.


OBAMA: Republicans, after having taken 40 votes to try to get rid of
Obamacare see this as their last gasp. Nobody thinks that`s good for the
middle class. And I`ve made this argument to my republican friends
privately. And by the way, sometimes they say to me privately I agree with
you. But I`m worried about a primary from, you know, somebody in the Tea
Party back in my district. Or I`m worried about what Rush Limbaugh is
going to say about me on the radio. So you`ve got to understand it`s
really difficult.


MADISON: Well, they better understand Rush Limbaugh has good health
insurance, and he can afford it. And the constituents are the ones who
don`t care whether Rush Limbaugh has health insurance or not. They`re
going to be one where grandma doesn`t have health insurance, where that
child who graduates from college still needs health insurance, won`t be
able to get it. And Rush Limbaugh will be sitting back, do I dare say,
big, fat, happy, with all the health insurance he needs.

Look, the reality is isn`t it a sad day with all the power that you
are supposed to have as a United States congressman and a senator that you
are afraid of one single person who just happens to be a radio talk host.
It`s a sad day when you can`t use the power you have as a United States
Congress person.

SHARPTON: I`m going have to leave it there, Abby Huntsman and Joe
Madison. Thank you for your time this evening. And be sure to catch Abby
on "THE CYCLE" weekdays at 3:00 p.m. Eastern right here on MSNBC.

Coming up, honoring an American hero at the White House. And an
elaborate bait and switch. Donald Trump University hit with a $40 million
lawsuit with claims of fraud. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
filed the suit. He`ll join us ahead.


SHARPTON: Today, President Obama honored an American hero at the
White House. He presented Staff Sergeant Ty Carter were the Medal of
Honor, the highest military honor in the United States for his bravery and
heroism during this 2009 firefight in Afghanistan. Staff Sergeant Carter
was one of 53 American troops surrounded by more than 300 Taliban fighters.
Under heavy gunfight, he risked his life over and over to help protect his
fellow soldiers.


OBAMA: The outpost was being slammed from every direction -- machine
gun fire, rocket-propelled grenades, mortar, sniper fire. It was chaos.
The blizzard of bullets and steel into which Ty ran, not once or twice or
even a few times, but perhaps ten times. And in doing so, he displayed the
essence of true heroism. Now the urge to surpass all others at whatever
costs, but the urge to serve others at whatever costs.


SHARPTON: And this message is the message President Obama had for
Staff Sergeant Carter`s children.


OBAMA: Ty said he was hoping to take his children around Washington
to show them the sights and the history, but Jaden, Madison, if you want to
know what makes our country truly great, if you want to know what a true
American hero looks like, then you don`t have to look too far. You just
have to look at your dad, because today he is the sight we have come to
see. Your dad inspires us, just like all those big monuments and memorials



SHARPTON: There`s trouble in the boardroom. New York`s Attorney
General is suing Donald Trump for $40 million accusing him of scamming
people who spent tens of thousands of dollars on his for profit investment
school, Trump University. Mr. Trump was featured on ads for the school,
promising success in business and an introductory video. He said he would
hand-pick all of the instructors.


DONALD TRUMP, ENTREPRENEUR: Honestly, if you don`t learn from them,
if you don`t learn from me, if you don`t learn from the people we`re going
to be putting forward, and these are all people that are handpicked by me,
then you are just going make it in terms of the world of success.


SHARPTON: But the Attorney General`s office says that claim and many
others are just not true. The lawsuit says not a single instructor was
hand-picked by Donald Trump. Instructors encouraged students to request
increases on the borrowing limits of their credit cards so they could
afford more expensive classes. If students didn`t purchase the more
expensive programs, they were ignored. And students often ended up worse
off financially than they had been before.

The Donald is denying the charges, claiming the lawsuit is politically
motivated. And the vast majority of his students were satisfied. But
looks like Trump has bigger problems than picking his next apprentice.

Joining me now is the man behind the lawsuit, New York Attorney
General Eric Schneiderman. Mr. Attorney General, first of all, thanks for
being here tonight.


SHARPTON: Now, this lawsuit comes after an investigation that started
in 2011. How did your office find out about these issues?

SCHNEIDERMAN: Well, we started an investigation of for-profit
colleges generally, because -- and we in fact settled with one for-profit
school that was distorting the job placement numbers that it provided to
induce students to enroll last week for 10 million bucks. We came across
Trump University and we realized that it was a scam from top to bottom,
starting with the fact that it wasn`t a university, never registered with
the New York State Department of Ed. The State Department of Ed had called
them on it, and they gave them one lie after another, we`re shutting down
our operations in New York, we`re merging into a Delaware company. All

And then as we dug into it further, we discovered that all of the
promotional materials were false, that we got the president, former
President of Trump U. to testify to us that Donald never picked one of the
instructors. That he never met any but maybe one of the instructors. That
people who thought they were going to this program to see him, and he was
saying on that video you just ran, oh, you`re going to learn from me, they
ended up having their pictures taken next to a life-sized poster of Trump
to make it look like they met him.

SHARPTON: So Trump never got personally involved, but he was behind
this whole school idea?

SCHNEIDERMAN: He was behind it. He was the chief pitchman. And it
turned out to be a classic bait and switch. People were invited to a free
seminar. At the free seminar, they were pitch that they`d had to take this
three-day $1500 seminar. And we`ve gotten what they called their playbook,
their instruction to teachers of these programs. And they were directed to
spend all their time getting the students to enroll in more and more
expensive programs. We have people who ended up having to move out of
their houses, going way into debt.

And as you noted, one of the most despicable things about this is that
their teachers were directed to tell students that if you want to make it
in real estate, you`ve got to have more credit. So call all your credit
card companies and get bigger lines of credit. And then they got them to
use that extra credit to buy what they call the leap programs that were 10,
25, or even $35,000. All the money went to Trump U. These people came
away with nothing useful. No hand-picked instructors. No insiders,

They said, they were going to give them a list of hard money
investors, so they never had to go to a bank, what they gave them was a
Xerox copy of a list out of a magazine. This was a scam from top to
bottom. And we`re going after a variety of schools and investigating them.
Mr. Trump seems to think because he is a famous guy he is above the law.
Not in New York he is not. So he is going to have to face justice.

SHARPTON: Now, the lawsuit also lays out a playbook that Trump
University instructors was supposed to follow. As you just said. Trump
has responded to the lawsuit with this website claiming 98 percent of
students were satisfied.

SCHNEIDERMAN: Yes. This issue was addressed, this is not me
talking, but was addressed by the court of appeals for the 9th circuit.
The federal court out in the west coast. A woman who had people filled out
a questionnaire, they had people filled these questionnaires out in front
of the teachers at the end of a motivational speech at the seminar. And
actually, we have records of them berating students to give them higher

So the 9th circuit in considering Trump`s -- this claim that Trump was
asserting there said victims of fraud often praise their victimizers until
the moment they realize their money is gone and compare this to Bernie
Madoff. His customers all praised him because they thought they were
getting such great returns until they realized it was a scam. Same thing
with Donald Trump.

SHARPTON: Now, in your lawsuit, it says, quote, "Mentors compel
students to complete the non-anonymous evaluations in their presence,
filled out the forms themselves, or pressures students into giving higher
scores." Is that how you get 98 percent approval rating?

SCHNEIDERMAN: I guess so. We don`t even know if the 98 percent
number is true. But we have gotten dozens of complaints came to our
office, came to better business bureaus. Now that we filed the lawsuit,
we`re getting complaints from other states. A lot of people are upset
about this. As I said, there is a class action suit in California by
disgruntled students. People were not happy once they realized they hadn`t
gotten anything, once they got out and discovered that the mentorship
program they thought they were buying was useless and the people wouldn`t
return their calls.

There are very few people who I think that Trump is going to be able
to bring forward who say, they really got a great, you know -- they really
got a great buy when they invested in a phony university with phony
curriculum, with phony instructors and a life-sized poster of Trump so they
can pretend they met him.

SHARPTON: Now, how serious is this for Trump? And are you afraid to
talk him on?

SCHNEIDERMAN: Well, obviously not. I mean, the strange thing about
it is, he decided he wants to fight this out in the press. Which I -- I
don`t know. I`m sure his lawyers would not advise him to be doing this.
And that`s why we`re responding. But I`m not afraid to take him on. Yes,
I mean, you`ve known me for a long time, Rev. This is not the kind of
thing that I shy away from. In fact, it`s important to send a message that
no matter how powerful you are, no matter how famous you are, there is one
set of rules for everyone.

SHARPTON: Very interesting. New York Attorney General Eric
Schneiderman, thank you for your time tonight.

SCHNEIDERMAN: OK, thanks, Reverend.

SHARPTON: We`ll be right back, and we`ll keep watching this case
closely. We`ll be right back. Friend or foe, I want to know. "Reply Al"
is next.


SHARPTON: It`s time for "Reply Al." Remember, friend or foe, I want
to know. Eddie wants to know, "Just how long before Attorney General
Holder files proceedings in North Carolina?"

Great question, Eddie. North Carolina Senator Kay Hagan has called on
Attorney General Holder to review the law. As we reported earlier, Mr.
Holder has already sued Texas over their voter ID laws, and all indications
point to North Carolina being next in line. And as you heard tonight, some
of us are planning to go in there and put even more of a national spotlight
on what they`re doing there, and would Reverend Barber and a cross section
of North Carolinians are doing to resist these kind of laws. I think that
we`ve got to stop these laws wherever we find them because it will only
embolden other states if there is not national resistance.

Dave says, "My daughter was truly moved by the spirit of the march.
Attached is a picture of her with a sign she made."

Wow, thank you, Dave. This is the picture he is talking about of
Dave`s daughter holding a sign that reads "The Dream Lives On." And I
think that more than anything else that Martin III and I wanted young
people to capture the spirit of the dream, because the dream of equal
justice, fairness, and equal opportunity is what it`s all about. And that
dream has not been fulfilled. But if the next generation keeps fighting on
and on and on, we will fulfill it one day.

Well, thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. "HARDBALL" starts right


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