ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
October 21, 2013
Guest: Barney Frank, Eric Stern, Evan Smith, Salamishah Tillet, Sonia
Ossorio, Rebecca Traister, Winnifred Bonjean-Alpart
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris
President Obama appeared in the Rose Garden today to remind his
conservative critics just why Obamacare matters and why you should be
listening to the gleeful conservative attacks on the health care
exchange`s rollout with a big grain of salt.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I`m sure that given
the problems with the Web site so far, they`re going to be looking to go
after it even harder. But I just want to remind everybody, we did not
wage this long and contentious battle just around a Web site. We waged
this battle to make sure that millions of Americans in the wealthiest
nation on Earth finally have the same chance to get the same security of
affordable, quality health care as anybody else.
HAYES (voice-over): Today, the president defended his health care
law against a chorus of disingenuous critics who are suddenly very
concerned that people are having trouble signing up through
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), MINORITY LEADER: Obamacare is,
indeed, a train wreck. I mean, a visit to the Web site is kind of like
a trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles in your state.
REP. BUCK MCKEON (R), CALIFORNIA: I`ve heard that they`ve had over
8 million hits, and so far, they have people in the single digits that
have signed up.
REP. TIM HUELSKAMP (R), KANSAS: I`ve been online waiting on hold
virtually for 89 straight hours, still can`t get signed up.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m hearing firsthand the frustrations from
my constituents. One constituent said, "The program freezes up when I
try to enter your tax filing status."
HAYES: This is the same political movement that just a few month
ago was encouraging people to cripple Obamacare by not signing up.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There`s a grassroots effort sweeping the
nation to encourage young people to opt out of the law.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Most young people don`t realize, they have the
opportunity to opt out of Obamacare.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you know Obamacare may be hazardous to your
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: May be.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The "burn your Obamacare" campaign is about
telling young people that this is bad for you.
STEPHEN COLBERT, COMEDIAN: There`s only one small problem with
this burn your Obamacare card plan, there are no such things as
HAYES: Conservatives have gone from anti-Obamacare hysterics to
complaining about people not being able to use the law in question.
Yes, the very same people who said Obamacare was going to hurt Americans
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: These are hard, working class
Americans who are on the verge of being punished, because as you said,
this law was built on broken promises.
HAYES: -- are now saying it`s a shame the government can`t get its
Web site to work.
RUBIO: In the 21st century, setting up a Web site where people can
go on and buy something is not that complicated.
HAYES: Republicans who said the president`s health care law will
literally kill people --
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R), MINNESOTA: Repeal this failure before
it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens.
HAYES: Those Republicans are still skeptical, but now they`re
much more reasonable.
BACHMANN: So, let`s make this voluntary for people. If it`s
great, people will sign up. If not, people will find another way.
HAYES: And it`s not surprising, given the governance record of
their last president, the Republicans see an opportunity to even the
Jonathan Strong, a reporter at "The National Review", tweeted "Is
Obamacare President Obama`s Iraq war?"
John Podhoretz, a conservative columnist with the "New York Post"
tweeted, "This Obama speech could be the equivalent of Bush speaking
from New Orleans two weeks after Katrina."
Four thousand four hundred and eighty-nine American service members
and over 100,000 civilians died during the Iraq war, 1,833 people died
in the waters of Katrina.
Three weeks into the launch of Obamacare and the Web site is indeed
So, next time you hear concern from conservatives about Obamacare
implementation, remember, it`s best not to take medical advice from an
HAYES: Joining me now, former Congressman Barney Frank, Democrat
from Massachusetts. Congressman, I imagine you were quite touched by
the out pouring of concern and technical critique and acumen being
exhibited by the center right in these days of the Obamacare rollout.
How do you see this as someone who has gone through the health care
battles over a set of numerous decades?
BARNEY FRANK (D), FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN: Well, first, I wish it
was coming to the center right. I wish we had a center right. I spent
most of my time in politics working with people who are in the center
right, whether it was Mike Oxley when he chaired the committee or
Senator Alan Simpson. The sad fact of American politics today is that
the right has eaten up its center.
Secondly, obviously, it is hypocrisy. But I do want to be clear,
the Obama administration should be severely criticized for this, and I
frankly resent it. I worked hard for this health care bill. I had some
initial doubts about the political staging. I think we finally got it
right. And I regret very much that they`re giving the right wing this
kind of ammunition.
Having said that, I should note that one of the things they did do,
which people should give them credit for, was to start this months
before it takes effect. The fact is that this will not have any
negative effect on anybody until January 1st.
So, while it`s regrettable that they did a lousy job of getting
ready, it`s at least good that they gave themselves some time.
Secondly, I would have to say that having been in the financial
services area for a while, the notion that the government is somehow
peculiarly unable to do these things, I heard from Mitch McConnell, is
just ridiculous. We`ve seen this high speed platform do mess-ups, we`ve
seen IPOs go very badly.
So, yes, they should have done a better job and I`m critical of
them, but I believe that it will be fixed in plenty of time before it
hurts anybody. And yes, there was great hypocrisy.
And you know, you also have to say this notion of taking over
medical care, we can`t get the government take this big role in medical
care. Actually, it is Medicare.
FRANK: We ought to stress, again, the government role in Medicare
-- which not even the most right wing Republicans are ready to get rid
of these days, they thought about it and backed off -- is far greater
than it will be under the Affordable Healthcare Act. In Medicare, there
is much more government involvement in the actual delivery of services.
HAYES: Not only that, I mean, one of the great ironies here is, of
course, that the Paul Ryan plan for Medicare, or the most recent
iteration of it, would be something that looks a lot like the Obamacare
exchanges. Essentially would be, yes, that`s what he wants to do for
Medicare. In fact, that`s what the Republican Party has voted in lock-
step partisan line for is essentially government running an exchange
that Medicare would be phased into.
And so, I think that --
FRANK: And I`ll tell you this.
FRANK: When I was in office and I got a complaint from someone who
felt that he or she was being treated unfairly with regard to health
insurance, we and my staff of great people learned right away, if they
were people who were on Medicare, if they were people who there was
government involvement, we would have likely been able to help them if
they were treated badly.
If they were dealing with the private insurance sector, where there
wasn`t a government role, there wasn`t anything we could do for them.
FRANK: The people being mistreated by the private health sector,
whether out of malice or more often out of incompetence, we couldn`t
help them. With regard to Medicare, we could do a much better job.
HAYES: Finally, Congressman, do you think we`re going to see
members of Congress, Republican members of Congress come around to
actually being genuinely invested in fixing the Affordable Care Act, in
getting it working as opposed to investing in destroying it, the longer
it goes on?
FRANK: No. Look, let`s be clear, people ask me, when did
bipartisanship end in America? It ended on January 21st, 2009. When
George Bush came to the Democratic Congress in 2008 and said, you know,
as a result of these deregulatory policies -- he didn`t admit that, but,
we`re in a terrible situation, we worked with him.
2009, Mitch McConnell announces that his number one goal is to
defeat Obama, and no, they haven`t been constructive about anything.
They didn`t cooperate with us -- forget about health care, which you may
say is a big ideological problem for them. We couldn`t get them to work
with us in either the House or the Senate constructively on financial
reform or trying to regulate derivatives, and setting up a consumer
HAYES: My favorite example, the office of the printer of the
United States, which had to be recess appointed because he was being
stone-walled by Republicans.
Former Congressman Barney Frank, thank you so much.
Joining me now, Michael Eric Dyson, MSNBC political analyst,
professor of sociology at Georgetown University.
The other side of this coin is the news of Ohio today. Medicaid
expansion funding gets approval. About 275,000 low income Ohioans
through the Medicaid expansion, which has gotten less coverage, but in
raw numbers is doing a lot more than anything we`re seeing on the
exchanges right now.
MICHAEL ERIC DYSON, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Absolutely right, and
it`s part of the hypocrisy here, because it`s been an accepted
governmental program that the Republicans dare not now offer a program,
then they support it silently, and the irony is, you won`t even let this
fledgling program -- yes, bugs aside, get buggy with it on the Will
But the reality is, once they get those bugs out, as the president
said today, the stuff is good. What it`s leading to is great, and it`s
comparable to what you`re now defending on the other side here. So, you
know, it`s not a matter of apples and oranges. It`s apples and apples,
and one of them, one set of green, one set of red, but let it go up, so
to speak. Let it mature.
HAYES: So, you`re saying -- this is the argument I`ve heard from
Democrats before, right? Twenty years from now, the president said, 20
years from, it will be unthinkable for Republicans to oppose Obamacare.
DYSON: That`s a great way of putting it and that`s absolutely
right, because it will benefit the very people that they ostensibly are
protecting. Their populous out there that they say, we`re speaking on
behalf of those people, those people will be so ingratiated, so to
speak, with this program that they will be the most ardent defenders.
HAYES: I want to play something that Senator James Inhofe had to
say recently about Obamacare.
HAYES: Take a listen.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
SEN. JAMES INHOFE (R), OKLAHOMA: A person can find out here in the
United States that he has this emergency situation where he`s got to
have immediate heart surgery. And if you`re in a country other than the
United States, a lot of them, you can`t get it done.
In my case, with my age, it would have been about a six-month wait,
because I hadn`t had a heart attack. And so, the message there is that,
you know, I say this to all your American listeners, let`s hold on to
what we`ve got here. You know, you`re talking to someone right now who
probably wouldn`t be here if we had socialized medicine in America.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HAYES: That`s James Inhofe, who just survived a quadruple bypass.
That argument, that zombie argument, A, that we`re socializing medicine,
and that, B, it`s terrible everywhere else in the world, refuses to die.
DYSON: Oh, my God, and it flies in the face of logic, because
first of all, the exact opposite is true. So, to talk about Obamacare
as socialized medicine, those of us on left and progressives, hey, where
is it? We`d love to see it, but it ain`t here.
HAYES: Medicare expansion is a lot more like socialized medicine.
That`s the one doing well so far.
DYSON: That`s right. That`s what they`re riding on, and they keep
suckling from it, but they cannot give acknowledgement on the other
side. And the flip side, of course, is people from all over the world,
hey, you know, we`re over here, if something happens to us, we`re able
to get care immediately.
DYSON: So, this argument about socialized medicine being wrong, on
the flip side of that argument is, people in other countries that have
access to health care in a broad fashion much more likely are to prevent
themselves from getting the emergency kind of treatments that were
mandated by his --
HAYES: And what`s fascinating to me here is the fact that what you
end up with is Republicans and everyone in the political conversation
having to take a hard look at the fact that this thing is here now and
people are wrestling with it because the status quo of what a lot of
people have is so terrible.
DYSON: It`s bad.
HAYES: That I think is what we`re going to see develop more
politically as this rollout continues.
MSNBC contributor Michael Eric Dyson, thank you so much.
DYSON: Thank you.
HAYES: Coming up --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: I hope Washington, in all seriousness, is
listening, because this is impacting people in every state, from every
corner of this country, and yet, they are tone-deaf. They will not
listen to what the reality is, and that is the shame of all this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KLEIN: Well, at least one person was listening and he took it upon
himself to report the stories of each of Sean Hannity`s guests, and he
found -- drum roll -- they were completely misleading, and that is being
nice about it. He`ll be here with me, ahead.
HAYES: You know we love hearing from you on Facebook and Twitter.
Republicans are all of a sudden so genuinely upset and concerned about
the glitches on Obamacare`s Web site.
So my question for you tonight is, what right-wing issue are you
concerned about and think should be trolled the way Republicans are
Tweet your answers to @allinwithchris. Or post at
Facebook.com/allinwithchris. I`ll share a couple at the end of the
So stay tuned. We`ll be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Now, there`s no question that businesses are being
negatively impacted by Obamacare. Now, they are not the only ones.
Average Americans, their families are also feeling the pain, thanks to
the health care overhaul train wreck.
And six of them, they`re here with us tonight to tell their story,
which, by the way, the media ignores.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We`ve been talking about the famed concern conservatives
are showing for Obamacare and its implementation, but the most infamous
example of this kind of thing, the crown jewel of conservative health
care concern trolling comes from that Sean Hannity special earlier this
month. And not simply because the outright falsehoods that were told
about the health care law, but because after Hannity brought on those
average Americans, the three couples, to tell their Obamacare horror
stories, something about it just didn`t ring true.
Eric Stern, a contributor to Salon.com, saw the show and decided to
pick up the phone, do some reporting. He spoke to the actual guests and
discovered their worries, well, had some holes. Stern first talked with
Paul Cox, who along with his wife, Michelle, told Hannity Obamacare was
limiting the growth of their business.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: And you`d like to hire full-time employees.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We would love to.
HANNITY: So, you`re going to keep them below 30 hours?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Exactly.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`d have to keep them below 30 hours, or --
not that we wouldn`t want to pay it, we just wouldn`t be able to stay in
business and pay it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The provision of Obamacare they`re talking about requiring
all full-time workers be offered health insurance from their employers
only applies to businesses with 50 or more employees. Stern wrote that
Mr. Cox revealed his company has only four employees, or in other words,
their company will not be affected by that provision of Obamacare.
So, what was with all the talk about cutting back workers and
There was a long pause, wrote Stern, when he asked him this.
"After which he said he`d call me back. He never did."
Next, Stern called up Kurt and Alison (INAUDIBLE), who said this to
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don`t have insurance for our daughter, who
has a pre-existing condition, so we`re looking at probably $20,000 in
premiums next year.
HANNITY: Nineteen thousand.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
HANNITY: Which is how much higher than what it was? Twice as
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Twice as high.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Stern reported that, assuming the couple didn`t smoke and
was eligible for subsidies, they would get a plan for less than $8,000 a
year through Obamacare, which would include their daughter and her pre-
Finally, Stern spoke to the last of three couples, Robbie and Tina
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our new policy that we can have won`t have the
same benefits to it. Anything similar, though, is going to rise between
like 50 percent to 72 percent and it will have things in it that we have
no choice, like we`ll have to have maternity benefits, and we`re not
planning on having any more kids.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: After that couple told Eric Stern they had no plans to go
on healthcare.gov and actually look for a better deal because they
oppose Obamacare in principle, want nothing to do with it, Stern took
upon themselves, and found them a plan that`s more than 60 percent less
than their current bill.
I`m pleased to be joined by Eric Stern from Salon.com, also deputy
secretary of state for Montana, senior counsel to former governor of
Montana, Democrat Brian Schweitzer.
Eric, you write in the piece that something about watching this did
not sit right with you. What was it?
ERIC STERN, SALON.COM: I -- you know, based on what I know about
the act, about the Affordable Care Act, it just didn`t sound right.
Nothing that these people were saying sounded like they were really,
like, it really would matter come January 1st.
And basically, so, I just -- it just had a funny smell to it, and
so, I basically just Googled them and I searched them and I picked up
the phone and I had a series of conversations with them. And,
generally, they were pretty helpful. And you know, I want to make
clear, they believe -- they are pessimistic about the upcoming
Affordable Care Act.
They believe it`s going to be a train wreck, for lack of a better
expression. And so, I don`t know that they were being dishonest. Paul
Cox, maybe, but generally speaking, I think they`re just afraid. And
the real fault lies with Hannity for trying to claim that these people
represent the train wreck.
STERN: It`s ridiculous.
HAYES: Well, what you have to do if you`re producing that show is
you have to vet the stories of the people that are coming on your show
to tell you this are actually what they say they are and actually fit
under something that Obamacare changes or would make worse.
STERN: Right. And, obviously, you know, they didn`t -- Hannity`s
producer didn`t do his homework. Hannity, obviously, didn`t ask basic
questions of anybody prior to running the story and I think it`s
inexcusable. I think you have to do basic work if you`re going in front
of however many viewers he has, I don`t know, 2 million, 3 million.
You`ve got to do your homework.
HAYES: Here`s the thing I found fascinating about the episode is I
remember this period of time where Dick Cheney was sort of planting
seeds about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and he was running this
crazy information laundering operation, which he would plant a story,
you know, through Judith Miller, appear on "The New York Times" have, go
on "Meet the Press" and then report in "The New York Times." and a lie
would sort of reinforce itself.
And what you`re seeing here is these three people, my sense from
your reporting is, these are conservatives, they`re FOX News viewers,
they`re getting a lot of information about Obamacare from actually
watching FOX, reading the conservative media, and then they`re going on
FOX to give their real-life testimonials based on not information about
how they`re actually interacting with the law but based on the tales
they`ve been told on FOX itself.
STERN: Yes, that`s correct. In other words, they`re in an echo
chamber and there`s a fenced-in garden around the whole thing, and there
is this enormous section of America that basically just wants to listen
to FOX and hear -- want to be up in arms about something and they want
to be outraged about Obama. And it gets to the point where it`s not
even -- it`s no longer advocacy.
If Hannity wanted to be an advocate against Obamacare, there`s a
lot of arguments he could make, there`s a lot of research he could do.
He could do stories about, for example, why the exchange crashed or why
it wasn`t working.
I think there`s a lot of -- I would be interested in that story if
he did that, because I would like to see somebody who is sort of, you
know -- I like adversarial journalism, but this is not even -- this is
just a made-up thing. It`s not even -- it`s not even advocacy
journalism. It`s literally just made up out of whole cloth and it`s
nonsense, and he ought to be ashamed of it.
HAYES: Do you -- you said one of the people you talk to, Mr. Cox,
I believe, you feel he did kind of know that what was happening didn`t
actually comport with what was being communicated on the program.
STERN: No, I mean, I think he said he doesn`t want to hire -- he`s
keeping his workers part time. He doesn`t want to go full time with
them. He has four employees, because he is concerned about costs.
Now, he could argue that he has some sort of global concern about
the sort of general costs to everybody about Obamacare coming down the
STERN: But it`s not really --
HAYES: And what that points out, too, is employers having keeping
people part time are not growing for years, and now they have this
wonderfully convenient excuse in Obamacare which they are invoking any
chance they can get and I have heard that up and down the line.
Salon.com contributor, Eric Stern, thanks so much for joining us
It`s homecoming night for Senator Ted Cruz, as he`s welcomed back
into the arms of conservatives in Texas. There are some signs of
buyer`s remorse in the Lone Star State. More on that, ahead.
HAYES: Any moment, Senator Ted Cruz will take the stage at his big
homecoming party in Houston, Texas. You see a live shot of that right
Just two days ago, Senator Cruz received a standing ovation from
Texas Federation of Republican Women`s State Convention in San Antonio,
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED CRUZ (R), TEXAS: Thank you. That is a slightly different
reception than I get in Washington, D.C. And having spent the past
month up in D.C., it is really great to be back in America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Get it?
Earlier the same day, Cruz spoke to the Texas Medical Association
in Austin, Texas.
Just a quick recap, in case you found that confusing. Senator
Cruz, having flown in from the foreign country of Washington, D.C., to
his home state of Texas, is right now celebrating his great big
homecoming in his home state of Texas.
The Houston Tea Party is more than willing to offer up its
adoration, but Cruz has become one of the most polarizing figures in
national politics. He almost single-handedly shut down the government.
And this weekend, he showed no regret and no recalibration.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CRUZ: The House Republicans marched into battle courageously, and
the Senate Republicans should have come in like the cavalry to support
them. Unfortunately, a significant chunk of Senate Republicans instead
came like the air force and began bombing the house Republicans, our own
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: However, even on the home front, there are signs that all
is not well. As "The Houston Chronicle" notably unendorsed the senator.
"When we endorsed Ted Cruz in last November`s general election, we did
with many reservations and one recommendation that he follow Senator Kay
Bailey Hutchison`s example in conduct as a senator. Obviously, he has
not done so. Cruz has been part of the problem in specific situations
where Hutchison would have been part of the solution."
Joining me now is Evan Smith, CEO and editor in chief of "The Texas
And the big question, Evan, is --
EVAN SMITH, THE TEXAS TRIBUNE: Yes?
HAYES: Is it the case that the more rivaled Ted Cruz is by fellow
Republicans in the senate, the less popular he gets nationally -- and
the polls show his national approval rating just absolutely plunging --
does that solidify his support in the independent-minded state of Texas?
SMITH: Oh, most definitely. The more that Washington hates him,
the more that Texas loves him. The more that the liberal jackals of the
media attack him, it makes him stronger. When "The New York Times" or
"The Washington Post" or MSNBC attack him, that is spinach and he is
Popeye. It makes him stronger.
HAYES: OK, but here`s the question. The attacks from Cruz have
been coming from, you know, people such as myself, it also come from
sort of more mainstream or Beltway publications. It`s come from a lot
of conservatives, too.
And my question is, the Texas donor class, the folks in Texas that
are writing the checks, the folks in Texas who run big oil companies
that don`t want to see the government default, for instance, OK -- how
is this affecting their relationship to Ted Cruz, their understanding of
SMITH: Well, if it is affecting their relationship, they`re not
talking about it publicly. Privately, some Republicans may grumble.
Some Republicans say, gee, by the standards of Ted Cruz, I must be a
liberal. These are people who have been Republicans for a long time,
who bank-rolled mainstream conservative Republicans for some time, but
that`s what they say privately.
Publicly, they can`t possibly speak out against this guy.
Publicly, the Republicans support this guy. Publicly, he gets standing
ovations like the one you showed in San Antonio, an eight-minute
standing ovation from the Texas Federation of Republican Women.
The Republican Party of Texas loves this guy. He said he would do
the things he went to Washington to do. He has done them. And of
course, he is getting the kind of welcome that a conquering hero gets
when he returns back from the battle.
HAYES: We were doing the series during the shutdown called "These
Are The People Who Are Running The Country," and we were looking at the
house republican caucus. And, I couldn`t help but notice how many of
the folks that signed on to this defund Obama Care letter were in Texas.
SMITH: That`s right.
HAYES: The Texas delegation seems to me -- they really seems to be
epicenter of the kind of politics that we saw that brought us to the
SMITH: Yes, well, you know, Louie Gohmert and Steve Stockman are
the most extreme examples in the Texas delegation, but the reality is,
the vast majority of the republicans in the Texas delegation, dare I say
all the republicans, were right there alongside Ted Cruz.
They didn`t see any difference between their position and his.
Now, again, privately, some of them may roll their eyes and say, "Well,
we are not sure that his tactics would be our tactics." But, everybody
in the Texas delegation is in sync. This is the federal republic of
SMITH: We may not have seceded literally, but we may as well have,
at least in the mind of many of these guys. Washington, D.C., could be
a million miles away, for all they know.
HAYES: So, here is the question, is there a tipping point? We
have seen in other states in which we have had unified republican
governance, a lurch to the right, often on the backs of a 2010 victory
and then redistricting. We are seeing this in North Carolina, we saw it
in Florida, in which there is backlash, right?
HAYES: There is too far you can go -- even in a fairly
conservative state. Texas is quite a conservative state. Is there a
sense from the electorate that you might be edging towards that point?
SMITH: Well, you know, Wendy Davis`s candidacy for governor and
the fact that democrats have something to rally around for the first
time in about 20 years gives some hope to people on the left that they
can fight back against this. But, the key bloc is not the democrats.
It is the few remaining moderate republicans, who up to this point have
cast their lot with the conservatives.
And, the question going into the next election and the next
legislative session is whether the moderate republicans are able to
speak up and say, "At whatever risk it poses for them, we have had
enough. We are going to join with the other guys and try to reset the
pendulum." So far, very little evidence, at least publicly, that they
are willing to do that.
HAYES: Well, and they can all look at what happened in the Ted
Cruz senatorial primary in which the person who is coded as moderate,
who himself was quite conservative, got his butt kicked handily.
HAYES: Evan smith from "The Texas Tribune." Thank you so much.
SMITH: Thanks, Chris.
HAYES: We will be right back.
HAYES: There is big news today on a story that has the whole
country talking. The latest from Maryville, Missouri, coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES (voice-over): But, first, I want to share the three
awesomest things on the Internet today. We begin with some photo shop
wizardry from an online favorite.
Congressman Trey Radel jumped on the Obama Care troll wagon today
with this tweet, "Why isn`t president Obama using Obama Care?" adding
"Maybe he is trying to logon or call right now." In response, I was
prompted to christened today national troll day. My tweet did not
escape the watchful eye of notorious Internet photo-shopper known only
by the name Dart.
Where some artists work in oils or water colors, Dart works in
photo-shops. They are something -- there is some -- It is sometimes
absurd, sometimes heretical and always hilarious. Case in point, he
took the original poster from the Camp B-horror film "Troll." He gave
it a new leading man in Congressman Radel.
It is not the first time Dart has delivered the goods for "All In"
during the pointless government shutdown, I tweeted "Hey, Dart! What
does $24 billion had lit on fire look like?" To which he responded,
"Something a bit like this, Chris." And, this was born. Some artist at
their Sistine chapel, Dart has Ted Cruz`s Nero with a flaming pile of
The second awesomest thing on the Internet today, a football
twofer. First, the Ohio State marching band performed a musical tribute
to Michael Jackson this weekend, and while the whole thing was really
cool, the buckeye band actually brought a gigantic moon-walking king of
pop to life on the field.
Here is the video of the choreographed routine sped up to give you
a full sense of how well done the whole thing was. And, while the skill
on display is something to cheer for, the NFL`s Kansas City chiefs had
some real celebrating to do when they survived the weekend as the only
undefeated team in the league and no one was happier than Coach Andy
HAYES (voice-over): That enthusiastic entrance reminded Twitter
user @LSUfreek of something from the deep recesses of pop culture`s
UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKERS: Hey, Kool-Aid!
KOOL-AID: Oh, yeah! Here comes Kool-Aid
HAYES (voice-over): And with that, we are treated to this
masterful gift. If you are having a bad day and can`t get the Ohio
State marching band to perform a moonwalk for you, this will do fine in
cheering you up.
And, the third awesomest thing on the Internet today, a one hit
holiday or at least a month away from those massive Christmas light
displays, but the trend has now crossed over to Halloween and one
Virginia family is set up to create a synchronized light display, that
really speaks to this moment in time.
YLVIS: But there`s one sound that no one knows. What does the Fox
say? Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, di-ding, ding, ding, ding, di-ding,
di-ding, di-ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, di-ding, ding, ding,
ding, di-ding, di-ding, di-ding. What does the Fox say Pow, pow, pow,
pow, pow, pa-pow, pa-pow, pow, pow, pow, pow, pow, pa-pow, Pow, pow,
pow, pow, pow, pa-pow, pa-pow. What does the fox say?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: It is the good thing Halloween is less than two weeks away
because the 15 minutes of that song are definitely up. You can find all
the links for tonight`s "Click 3" on our website, allinwithchris.com.
We will be right back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAREN FULLER, CO-ANCHORS KCTV5 WEEKNIGHT NEWSCASTS: Maryville,
Missouri, finds itself in the midst of a national firestorm over
allegations that a teenaged girl was sexually assaulted, and most of the
charges in the case were dropped.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Big news today in a case that has prompted national
outrage. Missouri has chosen a special prosecutor to investigate the
alleged rape of two teenaged girls by a group of boys who were initially
let off the hook. The details of the case out of Maryville an hour and
a half North of Kansas City are absolutely horrific.
The girls, who were 13 and 14 at the time, say they were drinking
alcohol and watching scary movies last January when they snuck out to
meet up with a 17-year-old football player. One of the girls, Daisy
Coleman, says the boy drove the pair to a small party in his basement
where he handed her a tall glass of clear alcohol, urged her to drink
it, and that`s where her memory of that night gives out.
When she woke up on her front lawn, Daisy wrote on the website
XOJane last week, she was freezing and sick and bruised. Her hair
frozen to icy chunks. Her mother discovered her at the door and brought
her inside for a bath where she discovered injuries consistent with
The rape kit, Daisy wrote verified her nightmare was real. She
later found out that her best friend said she had been raped as well.
The boys involved were arrested and charged, but despite the fact there
was reportedly a cell phone recording of the alleged attack on Daisy,
the local prosecutor dropped felony charges against the boys, citing
insufficient evidence to prove a criminal charge and an unwillingness of
the witnesses to testify. The boys said the sex was consensual.
It was later reported that Daisy`s alleged attacker was the
grandson of a longtime Missouri political figure. In an interview, a
local prosecutor said the matter involved drinking and sex, quote,
involving -- involving, quote, "Incorrigible teenagers, said the boys
were doing what they wanted to do and there weren`t any consequences.
And, it is reprehensible, but is it criminal, no."
Daisy and her brother say they were harassed in the aftermath of
the incident. Daisy was suspended from the cheerleading team. Said,
she was accused of "Asking for it." She twice attempted suicide and the
family fled Maryville.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HEATHER STAGGERS, KCTV5 CORRESPONDENT: When we talk to people here
in Maryville, Missouri, everyone had an opinion, either in favor of the
boys or in favor of the girls, but no one wanted to talk about it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Daisy and her mother eventually went public in a radio
interview and blockbuster story in "The Kansas City Star." It was
published to full 21 months after the alleged attack. The online
collective anonymous then took up Daisy`s case, which it compared to the
infamous rape case last year in Steubenville, Ohio.
In a statement anonymous lamented that "We have heard Daisy`s story
far too often." The publicity helped the story gain national attention,
which Daisy and her mother have embraced her best friend Paige Parker
has since gone public about the incident as well.
"I not only survived, I didn`t give up," Daisy wrote, Friday,
responding the indications as a special prosecutor is expected to reopen
the case. She added, "This is a victory, not just for me, but for every
girl." Joining me now is Sonia Ossorio, President of the New York City
chapter of the National Organization For Women, Salamishah Tillet, Co-
founder of A Long Walk Home, a non-profit organization that uses art to
end violence against girls and women. She is also a guest blogger at
"The Nation" and journalist Rebecca Traister. She is the author of the
book "Big Girls Don`t Cry: The Election That Changed Everything For
This case has blown up. I think it is fair to say. It is blown up
in the way no case has blown up I think since Steubenville. Why do you
think it has captured something in the national attention; because these
kinds of incidents, it`s horrifying to say, happen far more often than
they end up on the front pages.
REBECCA TRAISTER, JOURNALIST: They happen all the time, and I
think it is really important that we look at what is different about
this case. This case, there was a witness in the friend, Paige Parker,
there was reportedly an iPhone video taken, there was a family that was
willing to come forward and a mother who was empowered enough and
recognized the signs of rape the morning that she found her daughter and
took her straight to a hospital.
Despite all of these things that make this case seem so horrifying
to us, still with all that behind it, if literally it didn`t get
prosecuted. So, imagine -- and all those things are very unusual,
because in most cases like this that happen all the time all over
America to all kinds of people, there aren`t sober witnesses. There
aren`t iPhone videos. There are far greater areas and late reporting
and anxiety about coming forward. And, so, I think we should really
consider what is so unusual about this case and then multiply it by how
many times we don`t have those things.
SALAMISHAH TILLET, CO-FOUNDER OF A LONG WALK HOME: I would also
add to all of the things that Rebecca just said. It`s also the ripple
effect of the case, right? So, that the mother lost her job, that the
house that was on sale was burned down. So, one of the things that we
do know --
HAYES: It burned. We don`t know if it was burned down.
TILLET: Or burned, right.
HAYES: Under mysterious circumstances.
TILLET: -- under the mysterious circumstances that may or may not
be connected to the case. But, one of the things -- and her attempted
suicide, that`s part of my argument here. One of the things that we do
know is that violence against girls and women begets more violence,
right? So, that it`s also unusual in the sense of how much violence we
see used against the mother, the daughter, the brother, the kind of
emotional and maybe physical terror that they are experiencing.
HAYES: And, also, I think, the way which is similar to the
Steubenville case, the way in which it seems like there are a
significant portion of the community that has taken a position that from
the outside seems just completely morally abominable, right? Which is
the defense of these alleged assailants and not the survivors.
SONIA OSSORIO, PRESIDENT OF THE NEW YORK CITY CHAPTER OF THE
NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN: You know, one has to wonder if --
because it seems so just out of character, and so many people are
compassionate, caring people who think rape is terrible --
OSSORIO: Is it a coping method that we have? Because if we deal
with reality, the fact that 1.3 million women -- 1.3 million were raped
or fended off rapists in 2010, according to the CDC --
OSSORIO: -- who has named this a national health crisis in this
nation. The reality that then would be that, basically, women are just
randomly raped all the time, is it a way to think of, well, this is the
way it won`t happen to me or my daughter.
HAYES: Compartmentalize -- I want to talk about this case and
Steubenville and the phenomenon with the high school student actress who
is playing the role of the 16-year-old sexual assault survivor in an off
Broadway play that is getting a lot of attention here in New York. Stay
HAYES: Earlier in the show, we asked you what right-wing issues
are you concerned about. We got a l of answers posted to our Facebook
and Twitter. Cassy Zobel Sioufi from Facebook said "Gun control. Every
time the Tea Party held a vote to repeal or defund Obama Care, or
threaten to shut down the government over it, the senate should send the
house a gun control bill."
Debra G from Twitter says "Do you want the list alphabetically or
numerically?" And, Donna Kat from the Facebook who says, "Their fixing
Social Security and Medicare." Thanks, we will be right back.
HAYES: We are back. I`m here with Sonia Ossoria, Salamishah
Tillet, and Rebecca Traister, joined by Winni Bonjean-Alpart, who plays
the lead character Joey in the off-Broadway production of "Slut: The
Play" about a high school rape whose details were hauntingly similar to
those at issue in the Maryville case. And, if I`m not mistaken, you and
the other folks in the play wrote this together as high school young
women engaged in living the reality of this.
WINNIFRED BONJEAN-ALPART, ACTRESS, "SLUT: THE PLAY": Right. I
mean, a lot of what we aim to do in the production of "Slut: The Play"
is to basically just present a reality, and we are high school girls.
We live it every single day. And, although I might not have the same
experiences as the character I play, what our play aims to do is give a
voice to even every girl living in a slut shame and culture.
HAYES: There is a detail that`s in the play, and that is a detail
that is common to the play and to the Steubenville case and to the
Maryville case. And, that is drinking too excess, right? That in all
cases, the survivor was very drunk, black-out drunk. Do high school
students understand in your world consent and someone being black-out
drunk as being something that by definition denies the possibility of
BONJEAN-ALPART: You know, I think if you ask that question to your
average high schooler, I am sure they would say, "Yes, we understand the
meaning of consent. But, when you are put in a scenario where there is
a lot of alcohol and most everybody should probably be beyond the realm
of consent --
HAYES: Right, that`s a good point.
BONJEAN-ALPART: -- I think, actually, the lines are really heavily
blurred by some of the most smart and on the ball students, especially
where I go to school.
HAYES: That`s a really interesting point. I think the flip side
of that argument is, do adults understand this? Because it`s not clear
that they do. It`s not clear that the lack of affirmative consent from
someone who is inebriated past the point of being able to affirmatively
give it is definitionally a non-consensual sex. That`s what an issue
here, and it`s not the case of -- like it`s just teenagers that have
TRAISTER: No, of course not and in fact this is when feminists
talk about rape culture, one of the things we are talking about is a
culture in which rape is assumed as a kind of norm, and it very
misaddressed among other things that assumes that men out there a just
HAYES: Animals, predators for prey.
TRAISTER: -- waiting to rape and that women are by definition
rapable and that it is in fact up to them to make choices and engage in
behaviors to prevent themselves from this normal activity. And to me,
this is, too often when we talk about rape and sex.
We confuse the two. And, I think that one of these things that we
lose is that rape and sex are very different things and rape is about
power, whereas sex in an ideal world should be about connection, demand
connection is consent.
TILLET: But, I still want to add, because I feel like the alcohol
conversation oftentimes, it`s really important when we talk about sexual
violence in rape culture; but, I sometimes think it kind of clouds the
real rape culture that we exist in. I mean I was sexually assaulted in
I wasn`t drunk. I wasn`t incapacitated, and I am pretty certain
that I would have been blamed for my sexual assault. So, it`s the only
crime in which we over identify with the perpetrator and automatically
HAYES: Why is that?
TILLET: Why do we do that? I mean I think it`s part of what you
were saying earlier not wanting to identify with the helplessness or
powerlessness of a victim on one hand. But, I also think it is just
because it is disproportionately affects women, because it`s part of how
patriarchy kind of reproduces itself. I think it`s acceptable. It is
normative and -- now people think it`s kind of a natural expression of
male aggression or male sexuality. So, I just think that there are so
many components to our -- go on.
HAYES: No --
OSSORIO: Our legal system has really buttresses what she has said.
I mean if you look at the evolution of rape laws, it wasn`t that long
OSSORIO: -- where, you know, a woman`s private sex life was
completely open to be scrutinized in court.
HAYES: It was also not long ago that it was legally impossible for
a woman to be raped by her husband.
TRAISTER: Those laws are still being changed week by week, those
laws are being overturned.
OSSORIO: And, if you look globally, I mean you have countries in
Peru, if the rapist asks for the victim`s hand in marriage, he`s
absolved himself because he`s given her back her dignity. Just one
HAYES: One of the things I think that is also striking about this
case and these cases is the presence of the publicness of social media
HAYES: So, like, teenagers drinking is not a new phenomenon. It
has been going on for a long time. Sexual predatory behavior by young
men towards young women is also not new.
HAYES: Which is not to excuse in any way, but it is not new. Part
of what makes this so combustible is the presence of social media, the
fact that in this case, we think that there was an iPhone video. The
fact the Staubsteubenville case, there was an iPhone video. How do you
understand the way that social media, the way that the publicness of an
average teenager changes, like, how people in your generation are
thinking about each other and sex?
BONJEAN-ALPART: Right. I think especially with this, like, over
presence of social media and where we are always being told. You know,
our mistakes are permanent, the things that we do online can carry
offline. I think that`s one thing that`s so ludicrous about this case
is that should be used to the advantage of the victim, and you know the
people fighting for her. If there was a permanent mistake made by the
rapists in the video, that should be something that`s taken advantage
of, so yeah --
HAYES: That is a great point, right? That, like, the mistake you
make of posing in some photo is permanent, but the mistake you made of
allegedly committing a sexual assault and having it recorded, that
somehow ends up expunged.
TILLET: And, I also think it proves how literally, actually -- or
how literal we take rape seriously, right? So, that people can record
evidence that can be used against them in the court of law and do it so
willingly and so carelessly and then circulate it to the point where her
brother can see it.
So, I think if we actually took rape -- if rapists understood that
they could actually be prosecuted for it, they could go to jail for it,
if there were actual punishments consistently meted out to rapists,
they would not do things like --
HAYES: There is clearly no fear of recrimination. I wanted to
just -- quickly I wanted to get the sort of statistic as we know them
obviously. It is a hard thing to quantify, it`s something that`s
underreported, incidents of rape, sexual assaults. This is just
incidents from the department of justice, which is 243,800 sexual
assaults in 2011.
That is far below the estimate that u gave, which is based on a
survey methodology. My question is, is it getting better or worse? It
feels sometimes like it is getting worse, but then I wonder if it`s just
because we`re hearing about more cases.
TRAISTER: I think we are hearing about more cases and I do think
that there are -- I think that one of the slow ways in which
contemporary feminist conversation is making progress is that we are
having conversations like this. The slut walks movement, which I was
actually critical of, I think has done a lot to advance the
Young feminists, young women talking about their experiences,
perhaps social media bringing it to the attention, cases like
Steubenville, and now Maryville. The conversation where at least
cultivating a new awareness at the fact that it happens, I don`t think
it`s making the behavior better. I think the behavior is consistent.
HAYES: There is also a very public and present voice to say, going
to the house of older boys and drinking does not mean that you deserve
what you get afterwards or that there is nothing -- that there are no
recriminations, there is no punishment that all the rules for consent go
outlook the window. Sonia Ossorio from National Organization For Women,
Salamishah Tillet from "The Long Walk Home, Journalist Rebecca Traister
and actress Winni BonJean-Alpart, thank you all so much. I really
appreciate it. That is "All In" for this evening. "The Rachel Maddow
Show" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
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ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES