All In with Chris Hayes, Transcript 04/14/15
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight on ALL IN –
REPORTER: You can see the media running behind me here to chase the
HAYES: And they`re off.
Hillary Clinton holds her very first campaign event as a presidential
Plus, before there was Obamacare, there was Hillarycare.
HILLARY CLINTON (D), 2016 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Americans can no
longer wait for health care reform.
HAYES: Tonight, the second installment of Clinton for millennials.
Then, Chris Christie hits reset in New Hampshire.
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I am who I am. We`ll just deal
with it head on.
HAYES: Plus, the Senate reaches a compromise on Iran.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I shot him. I`m sorry.
HAYES: The disturbing world of pay-to-play deputies and why 70
percent of kids in one New York City didn`t take their exams today.
ALL IN starts right now.
HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
The greatest headline to be generated thus far from the brand new 2016
Hillary for president campaign has got to be this one, from today, “MSNBC
reporter heroically stands firm as rest of media chases Hillary`s Scooby
van.” That heroic reporter will join us in just a moment.
Today marked Hillary Clinton`s first day on the official campaign
trail as a 2016 presidential candidate. She kicked things off this morning
with a prearranged stop of the Jones Street Java House in Le Claire, Iowa,
where the cameras rolled where she made small talk with staff and placed
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We started the lunch menu probably a couple months
CLINTON: How is that going for you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Excellent.
CLINTON: Is it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, it is.
CLINTON: This is such a homey place. I love this.
I`ll try both your Chai and your carmello, and maybe a glass of water
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
CLINTON: Good. And maybe some lemon in there would be great.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`ll do that.
CLINTON: Good. Well, I`m going to go over here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Later, Clinton visited Kirkwood Community College in
Monticello, Iowa, for a roundtable with students and educators. MSNBC`s
own Alex Seitz-Wald was reporting live from the scene as she arrived.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALEX SEITZ-WALD, MSNBC REPORTER: We believe she`ll come in behind us
unless she comes in the back but the main entrance to this building is just
over my left shoulder here and the Scooby van is coming up right here right
behind our camera. Here it is. There she goes and Secret Service
following behind her. OK, they`re going around to the back so we`re not –
you can see the media running behind me here to chase the Scooby van. And
she`s going around to the back.
THOMAS ROBERTS, MSNBC ANCHOR: Wow.
SEITZ-WALD: All right. We`ll see her. We`ll see her very soon.
ROBERTS: The guy in the orange pants is pretty quick.
Alex, I mean, I`m looking at these people, wow – orange pants he`s
really outnumbered now by all of the people that are racing around the
back. I`m glad that you have not taken off from your live shot and you
remain with me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: Joining me now from Iowa is that MSNBC political reporter
Alex Seitz-Wald who is once again heroically refusing to sprint away from a
Alex, you`re part of television history this morning. That was kind
of – I fee like that was iconic. Instantly iconic moment window into what
a modern campaign is.
SEITZ-WALD: Yes, absolutely, Chris. I mean, this is a big problem
for Hillary Clinton. She is 100 percent name recognition. Anywhere she
goes, she attracts huge media following and it`s just impossible for her to
do these kinds of small events she wants to.
I`ve asked a bunch of Democratic strategists, if you were working in
their campaign, if you were in their shoes, how would you solve this
problem? And the answer is you can`t.
I mean, it`s just impossible so trying to split the difference here.
She`s doing some events like this one today and another one tomorrow that
are for the media where they will have access. We have footage. We can go
But then she`s also doing a lot of these smaller events where she
actually gets chances to meet with people and the secret to those is she
doesn`t tell the press about them or she has just a small member of a pool
of reporters that are with her.
So, it`s actually kind of very similar to the way the White House does
things, which is kind of incredible. This is the first day of Hillary
Clinton`s campaign and already at this level of the full-on kind of
operation and circus footprint of an almost White House level operation.
HAYES: Well, and that`s only going to grow. I mean, I think the way
to understand a campaign for folks that have not ever worked on a campaign,
whether as a volunteer, as a staffer, as someone covering one in any
capacity is that it`s like – it`s like a little mini society that gets set
up with all kinds of – all the thing about a society like they`re shunning
and shaming and status and back and forth. There are romances.
There are – that`s what happens in this universe. You saw a little
glimpse of it today and we`re just on day two. This is only going to grow.
I mean, dozens and hundreds more people will be coming into that in the
next four, six, ten months.
SEITZ-WALD: Yes, absolutely. And in a place like Iowa, New
Hampshire, these first two states what you would love to do is just have
kind of, you know, casual spontaneous genuine interactions, like what Rick
Santorum drove around the state all 99 counties in a pickup truck. That`s
just impossible for Hillary Clinton as much as she would like to do it.
And, you know, for her especially in 2007, she`s trying to execute
this reset here, she flew around the state in a helicopter literally, so
she`s trying to reintroduce herself but trying to do this other reset with
the media where she had toxic relationships with in 2008. And these two
things are in tension with each other.
You can`t have small events in Iowa while simultaneously allowing
access to the media, so you`re going to let somebody down on one of those
two fronts or split the difference on both sides, and we`ll see how it has
to go. Today is a preview of what`s to come for sure.
HAYES: That is a great point, really, really good points all along,
Thank you very much. I imagine you`ll be sleeping in that camera
All right. So here`s the thing: today, Hillary Clinton did some
stagecraft but there was also the first real bit of concrete substance we
got from the Hillary 2016 campaign. She laid out some of her themes in
that roundtable I mentioned at Kirkwood Community College. She cited a few
speck things, mentioning the tax rate that hedge fund managers pay.
She also said something concrete and specific about the way our
political system functions particularly the role of money in it. Take a
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: We need to fix our dysfunctional political system and get
unaccountable money out of it once and for all, even if that takes a
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, Karen Finney, senior spokesperson for Hillary
Clinton`s presidential campaign.
Good to have you here.
KAREN FINNEY, HILLARY CLINTON PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: Good to see you,
Chris, on the other side of the table.
HAYES: Yes, that`s right.
So, that`s what`s striking to me, here strikes me is the issue. I
think a lot of people feel, polling bears that out that American politics
are too dominated with people with big money. It seems to me that
Secretary of State Clinton feels that way. The president feels that way.
But then at the same time she`s got to run a campaign, right? So, you
guys are going to have super PACs. You`re going to be courting
billionaires and millionaires, like you got to go talk to those people.
So, it`s how are you going to talk about both these things at the same
Talk about how broken the system is while playing by that system`s
rules to win.
FINNEY: Well, again, I think you heard her lay out one of her ideas
an you will in the coming weeks and months because we still got about 18
months to go hear more about that. And, look, I think CEOs, those folks
you`re mentioning, they know where she stands on those issues, right? She
was very straightforward. She didn`t just talk about the hedge fund
carried interests but she`s talked about a lot of other ideas. She talked
about the deck being stacked towards those at the top and what about the
productivity of people who have been hard-working people not meeting their
So, they – I mean if you are a CEO and you give to the campaign, you
know where she stands and I think that`s the balance. That doesn`t mean
you don`t stop pushing. It doesn`t mean – but let`s be honest you can`t
unilaterally dishonor – that doesn`t mean you stop and part of the point
why she wanted to talk about it.
HAYES: Right. So, but this gets to a deeper issue, what is the
process by which what the Hillary campaign will stand for substantively be
produced, right, because there`s – I remember in 2008, you had this kind
of competition. You had a lot of people in the primary field, John Edwards
would come with a plan and then it was, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton
and Chris Dodd, what are they going to do? That doesn`t seem to be
happening here, right?
So, my question is like, when do we get specifics and how do – no,
really, like how do all those get shape?
FINNEY: OK, first we have 19 months.
HAYES: I know.
FINNEY: I`m just saying. So but let me talk you through the process.
For her – I mean, she went through a pretty rigorous process starting
around Christmastime. Even a little before that talking to a lot of
different people, a lot of different policy people and went away at
Christmastime with a 500-page briefing book. Came back and she`s got
But part of the point of this process, like she has thoughts about
where she thinks we should go and the things we need to do but as she said
at the top of this event – part of the reason she wants to talk to people
is to get their input, see what their questions are, so that when she does
start rolling it out what you`re hearing has the benefit of what she`s
And to Alex`s point, I disagree a little and some degree I put this on
the media. Media is going to have to work with us on some of this. And
actually people were – they didn`t like it but they understood what we
were trying to accomplish. You know, she want – this is what she wanted
to do. She wanted to get in the van and just go talk to people.
And so, to some degree, we`re going to have to figure out, this is
part of our job as the campaign is to figure, how do we keep you guys
happy, but also make sure –
HAYES: Well, I`m not out there –
FINNEY: Keep Alex happy and at the same time, make sure that she has
those conversations because I think it`s – this is something about Hillary
Clinton that I think people miss and having known her for almost 25 years
which, of course, I was in kindergarten when I first met her, I think it`s
This is the model – this is her. This isn`t Hillary 2.0. This is
HAYES: Right. Whether it is or not – whether it is or not, the
politics is borne of competition, conflict, back and forth debate. I mean,
that`s just the way politics work. People take positions based on the
political context whether they`re cutting off their right flank when
they`re in the House and John Boehner is doing this, right?
It`s like in the absence of all that dynamic factors, you could do as
many town halls as you want, right? The question is, where is the broader
context that`s producing a Democratic Party nominee who has a platform that
is genuinely a product of what the Democratic Party is?
FINNEY: Well, part of that is actually going out and talking to
people. Part of that is talking to policy people, which she has done. And
part that have is talking to actual real live everyday Americans. I mean -
- because we can have a conversation in the abstract, but if we`re not
connecting that to people`s lives, which is part of why the video started,
the way it did, with people and talking about their lives and everyday
But I also think today, you know, she did lay out a framework. She
talked about sort of four different areas. She talked about community, OK,
hold on. I know, I know you think it`s – but –
HAYES: I think it`s platitude, but it`s politics. I`m not hating on
FINNEY: But the idea is – I think she laid out a framework. I
actually think – you know, to your point, constitutional amendment, she
talked about the hedge fund carried interest, she talked about for-profit
colleges, she talked about college affordability.
HAYES: And she endorsed the college`s community college plan, again,
that`s a substantive position she`s on the record now.
FINNEY: And it`s actually something that she`s been supportive of in
the past. That being said this process, three to four weeks, talking to
people and then we still have time to start laying out –
HAYES: There is time.
FINNEY: The policy. We`re going to do this on her time frame, not
how the media wants it. But we`re going to be really nice along the way, I
HAYES: I want specifics.
FINNEY: I know you do. You are a policy guy.
HAYES: Right. Karen Finney –
FINNEY: Other people want to chase the Scooby van.
HAYES: Karen Finney, thank you. Welcome to Brooklyn.
New York City tabloids are still having a field day after former
Clinton Senate campaign manager, current New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio
couldn`t quite bring himself to endorse Hillary Clinton.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHUCK TODD, NBC NEWS: Are you for her now unequivocally, or do you
want to wait to see if she takes your advice on moving to a more
MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK: I think like a lot of people in
this country, I want to see a vision. And again, that would be true of
candidates on all levels. It`s time to see a clear, bold vision for
progressive economic change.
TODD: You`re not – you`re technically not yet endorsing her.
DE BLASIO: No, not until I see – again, I would say this about any
candidate – until I see an actual vision of where they want to go.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Former Congressman Anthony Weiner, who is married to one of
Clinton`s most trusted top aides, responded to perceived De Blasio diss,
saying, quote, “This notion that he is somehow the spokesperson for some
wing of the party that Hillary needs to audition for I think is wrong and
not helpful. She was working on a progressive vision of health care when
Bill De Blasio was still smoking pot at NYU or wherever he went”.
It`s that statement which brings us to our latest installment of
Hillary Clinton for millennials. Hillarycare edition, almost two decades
before Obamacare battles that nearly tore the country apart, there was
another fight over health care, the Hillarycare wars, and they were every
bit as ugly.
REPORTER: During the campaign one of Bill Clinton`s slogans was buy
one get one free. Well, Americans are already getting their money`s worth.
Hillary Clinton is on the job.
HAYES (voice-over): The year, 1993, America had a new president ready
to fix stuff. Bill Clinton had campaigned on health care reform but needed
someone to lead his efforts to fix a broken system. Who would help bring
America back from the brink?
HAYES: Tonight`s episode, the Hillarycare wars.
REPORTER: When President Clinton named his health care task force,
Hillary Clinton was in the front row. That`s because Clinton put her in
HAYES: Hillary Clinton with a top notch resume, a sterling legal
career, experience leading education reform in Arkansas, was tapped with
leading the White House`s health care reform legislation – a bill that
would guarantee every American health insurance.
REPORTER: The Clintons are taking on the doctors, the trial lawyer,
the hospitals and insurance industry. They know that what they`re
proposing is nothing short of a health care revolution.
HAYES: But not everyone was on board with the revolution`s messenger.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We elected Bill Clinton, not Hillary.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think she has a little too much power for a
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the lady has been handed an impossible
task in an impossible time.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The power that she has bothers me a lot.
HAYES: Initially, both the public and elected officials thought some
type of reform was inevitable.
SEN. BOB DOLE (R), SENATE MINORITY LEADER: I think the president and
Mrs. Clinton and others in the administration have done a pretty good job.
We haven`t agreed on anything yet but my view again it`s an area we can
work together. It`s the biggest single issue we`ve had in this country for
40, 50 year.
HAYES: That fall, the first lady went before Congress to present the
CLINTON: Americans can no longer wait for health care reform.
HAYES: Publicly, those who opposed reform expressed a willingness to
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And while I don`t share the chairman`s joy at our
holding hearings on a government-run health care system, I do share his
intention to make the debate and the legislative process as exciting as
CLINTON: I`m sure you will do that, Mr. Armey.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ll do the best we can.
CLINTON: You and Dr. Kevorkian, right?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ooh.
HAYES: But then things took a turn. Enter the special interest
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This was covered under our old plan.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, yes, that was a good one, wasn`t it?
AD NARRATOR: Things are changing and not all for the better.
HAYES: The Health Insurance Association of America came out with an
ad that would ultimately help sink the Clinton plan.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They choose.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We lose.
HAYES: Hillary fought back.
CLINTON: Now, they have the gall to run TV ads that there is a better
way, the very industry that has brought us to the brink of bankruptcy
because of the way that they have financed health care.
HAYES: But that created an opening for opponents.
REP. NEWT GINGRICH (R), MINORITY WHIP: It`s a little like having the
used car salesman take you for a drive around the block, and you sort of
love the afternoon and the convertible top is down, and it feels good then
you get back and have you a mechanic look under the hood.
HAYES: The barrage of negative publicity eventually soured public
opinion, 1300-page plan drew derision from all sides, and ultimately died
in a Democratic Congress.
SEN. GEORGE MITCHELL (D), MAJORITY LEADER: There`s no way in the
world that a bill of this magnitude can pass precisely as proposed.
HAYES: The Clintons abandoned their plans for health care reform.
And it would take two decades for reform to become a reality after an
equally brutal fight.
But Hillary, of course, knew all along what that fight would look
HILLARY CLINTON: It says that eventually we are all going to die.
BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT: Under the Clinton health plan? You
mean after bill and Hillary put all those new bureaucrats and taxes on us,
we`re still all going to die? I have never been so frightened in all my
HILLARY CLINTON: Me neither, Harry.
BILL CLINTON: There`s got to be a better way.
HAYES: That`s incredible footage, by the way. Hat tip to the ALL IN
who put it together.
If you missed last night`s premiere installment of our new public
series, Hillary Clinton for Millennials, head over to
Facebook.com/allinwithchris, to watch it. And while you`re there, give us
a like, won`t you?
OK. Still to come, Chris Christie tries to recapture the love of the
Republican donor class by going after something that voters themselves
Plus, in a year of shocking police videos, what we have seen tonight
is truly astonishing. The dash cam of video of police running down a
suspect supposedly to save his life. That`s ahead.
HAYES: If you`ve ever London, you probably know that tourists flock
to Buckingham palace to watch the famous changing of the guard, usually
brisk and efficient process, usually, but not every time.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, dear.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That poor guy reportedly slipped. There it is in slow motion,
in front of hundreds of tourists.
This fall captured on the video for the world to see. Contacted for
comment today, the Ministry of Defense declined, telling “The Telegraph”,
it would not comment on, quote, “a young man falling over while doing his
Fair enough, Ministry of Defense, though I`ve got a feeling the
guard`s buddies were not quite so restrained.
HAYES: Chris Christie, Republican governor of New Jersey, says he`s
finally ready to be president. In an interview with Yahoo`s Matt Bai,
Chris Christie said he would never have won if he`d run for president last
election because, quote, “the only way you`re going to perform well is if
you believe in your heart that you`re ready to be president and I didn`t.
And so, there was no way I could have won in 2012, I wouldn`t have because
I wasn`t ready.”
When Matt Bai asked him if he feels ready, yes, Christi answered,
“Without a nanosecond of hesitation.” Also told Bai that he`ll make a
decision on whether to run by May or June.
While Christie might be ready to be president, are voters ready for
Just last month, almost 60 percent of Republican voters say they
couldn`t see themselves supporting Christie. In a poll released today
showed that almost 70 percent of New Jersey voters think that Christie
would not be a good president.
Meanwhile, the governor began a two-day visit to New Hampshire today
as part of his tell-it-like-it-is town hall series.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: Our leaders in Washington are
not telling people the truth. Washington is still not dealing with this
problem. Frankly, Washington is afraid to have an honest conversation
about Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid with the people of our
country. I am not.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Christie went on to lay out a very detailed plan which called
for reduce Social Security benefits for retired seniors earning more than
$80,000, and elimination of the benefit entirely for individuals making
$200,000, and up and other income, along with, and this is key, raising the
retirement age to 69 from 67.
Now, in 2010, a Gallup poll showed broad support for putting income
related limits on Social Security, whether or not that`s actually a good
idea. That same poll showed that raising the retirement age is pretty
unpopular. So, just who is Chris Christie trying to impress with his
Joining me now from New Hampshire is Robert Costa, national political
reporter for “The Washington Post”.
Robert, this is my – this is my theory on this. I want you to tell
me what you think.
Americans aren`t clamoring to see the retirement age raised. But the
people that really do like that policy idea are the Republican donor class.
That is a very popular policy view of the Republican donor class. This is
Chris Christie`s play for them as much as it is for any voters.
What do you think of that?
ROBERT COSTA, THE WASHINGTON POST: I think that`s spot-on. Governor
Christie knows that Governor Bush, Senator Rubio and others have really
become the establishment favorites in this 2016 race. But I`d add another
point to what he`s trying to do here. He was here in Manchester earlier
I think he`s trying to recapture that magic. Think back to 2010, he
was having the town halls in New Jersey, casting himself as a truth-teller
with the public school teachers. He wants to get back to that kind of
popularity with the base talking about fiscal issue.
HAYES: Yes, but it`s also hard to imagine how he engineers – I mean,
back then, right, first of all a different political environment, it was
2010. It was sort of the high sort of frothy Tea Party atmosphere. But it
was also, he was – he was engaged in an actual direct confrontation in
which he was fighting teachers. He was fighting them over pensions. He
was fighting them over a bunch of things.
I mean, he can`t just go around New Hampshire yelling at random
COSTA: Christie`s team – and I`ve spoken with them over the past
week – they want to come back to these town halls, but a lot has changed.
You`re so right, because if you look at the New Jersey`s economy right now.
It`s really struggling. Cities like Atlantic City are having a tough time.
Pensions in New Jersey, they`re having liability problems.
So, Chris Christie, he thought town halls were the key to his
political success a few years ago, and he thinks entitlement reform can
make him sort of the Paul Ryan of 2016. But I`m not so sure the
establishment is convinced or conservatives.
HAYES: And I think the point you make about sort of turning back the
clock to 2010 is also great on the substance right, because one of the big
controversial things he took on were pensions and the way pension payments
were structured. He essentially demanded these concessions. Well, you
turn the clock forward and the state is in terrible fiscal shape and had a
judge basically ordering him to give money into – you know, into a pension
fund that he essentially has in violation of the court not given.
So, he`s even got a tough record to defend on the kind of dollars and
cents of what the spreadsheet in Jersey looks like.
COSTA: But he needs to make himself in intriguing in some ways
because Christie`s confidants, he allies know he`s in a hobbled position.
Rubio is rising. Rand Paul has his own coalition. Jeb Bush has the donors
with him. Where does Christie find space in this 2016 race?
He`s looking for a way back. So, he thinks his personality is part of
it but he needs to have specifics so people in the press pay attention and
the activists pay attention.
HAYES: Robert Costa, thank you for joining us. Always a pleasure.
All right. Up next, an update on the story we brought you last week
about a bill in Kansas that would crack down on how people spend their
welfare benefits. Now we`re learning, you might not be able to use those
benefits to buy underwear from some stores, but you may be able to use them
to buy guns.
Then, a disturbing new police dash cam and why police say their
actions probably saved the suspect`s life? That`s coming up.
HAYES: Pretty remarkable update to a story we brought you, the bill
now awaiting Governor Sam Brownback`s signature in Kansas restricting where
and how poor families can spend their welfare benefits.
The measure includes a ludicrously long and specific list of places
where Kansans on temporary assistance may not spend aid money including
movie theaters, swimming pools, cruise ships, theme parks and lingerie
shops among many, many others.
Because the purportedly small government Republicans of Kansas are
angling for a state government just big enough to regulate where its
citizens buy their underwear. But we, here at All In, couldn`t help but
notice that among the list of two dozen banned activities, retail
establishments, and products, there was no mention of guns.
So, I very pointedly asked one of the bill`s sponsors, State Senator
Michael O`Donnell whether Kansans can use their temporary assistance for
needy families or TAFNF money to buy guns.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Can you buy a gun with TANIF money?
MICHAEL O`DONNELL, KANSAS STATE SENATOR: No, you cannot buy a gun
with TANIF money. We do not restrict everything that you can and can`t buy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Can you catch a twinge of self-doubt after he told me you
cannot buy a gun with TANIF? Did you hear that?
Well, this week we learned that State Senator Michael O`Donnell was in
fact wrong about that. Not only can you spend welfare money on guns in
Kansas, but the spokesperson for the Department of Children and Families
has some super helpful suggestions for how an underprivileged Kansan might
use a weapon purchased with welfare money.
Telling the Wichita Eagle, quote, a gun could be used by a family for
security in a dangerous neighborhood or to hunt for food for their family.
This is, I suppose, not that surprising in a state that has become a
laboratory of right wing governance. A state that just passed a law
allowing its citizens to carry concealed weapons with no training and no
HAYEES: Quirky detail about Shaquille O`Neal that you may know is
that aside from basketball thing, he`s basically been a cop.
Here he is in 2005 being sworn in as a reserve officer in Miami Beach
and had been a reserve officer in Los Angeles prior to that. Most recently
in Lafayette Parish, Louisiana.
The same goes for Steven Siegel Lawman based on his expoits as a
deputy in Louisiana.
But the idea of volunteer sheriff`s deputies isn`t very amusing lately
in light of what happened in Tulsa, Oklahoma where Robert Bates, a 73 year
old insurance broker who volunteers for the Tulsa County Sheriff`s office
as a reserve deputy shot and killed 44 year old Eric Harris who according
to the county sheriff`s office was a subject of a sting operation to catch
him selling guns and drugs.
Harris was unarmed. Mr. Bates, who said he mistook his gun for his
therefore shot Harris by accident, turned himself in to authorities at the
Tulsa County jail today where he was booked.
The Tulsa County DA charged him with second degree manslaughter and he
was released on bond.
Now, whatever Mr. Bates` legal culpability under what scenario, I
have to wonder, is it OK for a volunteer deputy to carry a firearm in an
undercover sting operation that the police expect will have guns involved?
How does that happen?
Well, turns out the reserve officers are fairly widespread in the
U.S., and through their duties and whether or not they are allowed to carry
guns varies greatly from one jurisdiction to another.
Associated Press did a great comprehensive piece about this, quote,
“while there`s no current official tally, the FBI law enforcement bulletin
in 2006 estimated the national total of reserve officers at 400,000. While
some reserve officers receive modest compensation, most work without pay
and many are expected to provide their own uniforms and equipment. Even
within a single department training requirements can vary widely.”
Joining me now former Baltimore police officer Peter Moskos, associate
professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and author of “Cop in the
All right, Peter, I did not know about this institution so maybe let`s
start with the specific case and move to the general. In the specific case
I just feel
like how is it – how is it that this guy is brought along on what police
are anticipating is going to be an undercover gun buy and therefore will
have some element of danger?
PETER MOSKOS, FRM. BALTIMORE POLICE OFFICER: This guy – now I don`t
know if there`s cause and effect, but this guy gave money to the sheriff`s
campaign. The sheriff is an elected official, that`s part of the problem
right there. He`s a politician.
So he gives him a couple thousand dollars. He donates some cars to
county sheriff`s department and then somehow he has access to the most
dangerous part of police work. This was an undercover gun buy. The guy
did sell a cop a gun.
That`s not where you should have reserve deputy sheriffs.
HAYES: No. And I mean, and also – yeah, the confluence of America`s
broken campaign finance system and like our policing problems like pay to
play policing really sounds like a dystopic vision.
MOSKOS: Now maybe he would have done that without giving all that
money, but it`s a strange coincidence. It is that, isn`t it? It`s the
nexus of politics and policing.
HAYES: So, my understanding is that actually that arrangement isn`t
that uncommon. Part of what comes around with these sort of reserve
deputies a lot of times they are contributors or supporters of the sheriff
in question. Is there any defense for this program writ large? Like why
should we have part-time running around as police officers.
MOSKOS: They`re not all part-time hobbyists. We should have it
because I think it bridges the gap between police and the community. It
reminds the public that the public are the police and it reminds that the
police that the police are the public. We don`t want all cops to be
overmilitarized SWAT units.
And I think often these reserve deputy officers – or in New York City
we have the auxiliary police, which are volunteer police officers in
firearms here in New York.
HAYES: Right. So this is key, right, it`s like there`s a big
spectrum of like what we mean by this, right. So in New York, which is –
which is a very professionalized police department I think it`s fair to say
people`s criticism of the NYPD notwithstanding, that the auxiliary police,
which is the New York City version of this are in uniform volunteer, but do
not carry firearms.
MOSKOS: And what they do, they serve at parades, they serve at
community events. They are extra resources for the police department.
It also allows many of my students at Jon Jay College. They are
auxiliary politician because they want to dip their foot in before they
take a 20-year plunge
into the police department. Some of them say, you know what, this isn`t
for me. I mean, better to find…
HAYES: Better to find it out in that position.
All right. We got this video today, I have to ask you about. You
wrote a great book about policing. You have the experience as a beat cop.
This incredible video was released, which we`ll show you full if in a
moment. It shows a Marana, Arizona police cruiser ramming a suspect. It
happened on February 19. According to the police, the suspect Mariono
Valet (ph) – Mario Valencia was fleeing a
Walmart where he allegedly stole a rifle.
Local news reports that Valencia had already been intercepted by
police near a post office where he pointed the rifle at his head multiple
times and threatened suicide before fleeing again and firing the gun in
Police pursued him, ended up ramming him with a patrol car The
officer driving that cruiser that rammed the suspect is officer Michael
Rapico (ph) who was cleared by the county prosecutor`s officer, according
to police, Officer Rapico will not be charged criminally, though he is
still under administrative review at this time.
Police chief said that Rapico`s (ph0 decision probably saved the
life. Valencia spent two days in hospital before being booked into jail.
He faces as many as 15 charges. And while this video is disturbing,
language is graphic, the suspect survived the incident.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIIFED MALE: never mind.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, one round just went out into the sky.
It`s definitely unlocked now. It`s definitely loaded. Have units be
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 10-4. Is the subject shooting, or did you shoot?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Negative. I did not shoot.
Unit right there. Just stand off. Stand off. The gun is loaded.
Unit on Gotera Park (ph), stay off.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh.
Jesus Christ, man down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 435.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 451, he`s down. He`s down.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Unit right there, just stand off. Stand off. The
gun is loaded. Unit on Gotera Park (ph) – stay off.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Christ, man down.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: I don`t know what to make of that. What do you make of it?
MOSKOS: I wish I knew more about the circumstances.
Look, the car can be a weapon, a lethal weapon just like the gun might
be. I don`t know.
HAYES: If you can – if it is possible – conceivable that a police
officer could be justified using a weapon to shoot someone what you`re say
something it is
conceivable he could be justified to – have you ever – is that a thing
that cops do? Like, I`ve never seen that.
MOSKOS: It depends on where you are. I was not trained that way, but
sometimes – but in other jurisdictions, yeah, you see police cars run
other cars off the road. Usually that`s not a – never been a tactic
But exactly, if you can shoot someone yeah you can hit them with your
HAYES: The other – the thing that came to me here, and again I think
a lot depends – I mean, obviously there`s fear he`s armed and dangerous.
They think he has a gun. They say he has a gun.
MOSKOS: Well, we know he`s armed, right?
HAYES: Right. Yeah. Well, I mean it`s not hard confirmed, right.
This is all alleged. I don`t know what actually is actually definitively
That said, what`s interesting to me the guy on the radio saying, like,
OK, let`s take a second to figure out how to do this and I feel like I`ve
seen that now in a number of these police videos where there`s someone is
saying, hey, let`s take a sec and then someone rushes in to make a move or
MOSKOS: You see that time and time again. The more officers you get
on a scene there`s a good chance that one is going to be the most
aggressive officer on the scene and then, yeah, again I don`t know that
circumstance. I don`t want to sort of – but, yeah, you…
HAYES: Right. I got it. Don`t – stand back, and he doesn`t.
I don`t know, one had one idea, another had the other idea. But it`s
the more aggressive officer that makes the point.
HAYES: That`s a very important point. Peter Moskos, always a
pleasure. Thank you for coming.
OK, in a school district in upstate New York today, 70, 7-0 percent of
students did not take the exam that`s mandated by law and they had their
parents` permission. We`re going to talk to the person behind that test
and someone who literally wrote the book on how testing is undermining
education. Ahead, you do not want to miss this debate.
HAYES: After threatening to pass a bill the White House said could
derail ongoing nuclear negotiations with Iran, the senate foreign relations
committee today advanced a bipartisan compromise that, according to one
Democrat, would have a quote benign impact on those historic talks.
While President Obama had previously vowed to veto what`s known as the
Corker/Menendez bill, his spokesman said he would sign the compromise that
was reached today.
Much more on the details of that compromise and what made the
president change his mind is coming up on the Rachel Maddow Show.
HAYES: Eight former Atlanta public school teachers were sentenced to
prison today, some ordered to serve up to seven years for their convictions
in the cheating scandal that rocked the city and the nation two years ago.
Investigators found that Atlanta teachers, under intense pressure to
meet targets, had changed or erased student` answers on standardized tests.
And that scandal, one of the worst cheating scandals in the country`s
history, provides one
small window into the possible impact that high stakes testing can have on
some school districts.
In the past 13 years of No Child Left Behind, many teachers across the
country have openly revolted against testing regimes that they say put too
much focus on data and force them to teach to the test.
Now parents are getting involved and organized and they`re turning the
push to opt out of standardized tests into a full-fledged movement. Today,
in New York State, tens of thousands of students in grades three through
eight sat down to take the English language arts examine as part of a state
assessment designed around New York`s Common Core standards.
The math test is next Tuesday.
But many of their classmates were sitting out the test today amid
outcry from parents concerned about the pressure it puts on their kids.
In the Lower Hudson Valley, many districts reported that more than 25
percent of their students opted out, while in some districts, more than
half didn`t take the test.
In the West Seneca School District near Buffalo in upstate New York, a
whopping 70 percent of eligible students refused to participate. This is a
third year of Common Core aligned testing. And so far, this year`s opt out
numbers appear to be up, way up, from the 60,000 students statewide who
opted out last year.
Some districts in the central part of the state near Syracuse, saw the
of students refusing to take the exam increase more than 600 percent.
Now, the opt out movement cuts across the usual ideological battle
lines, because the tests are designed around Common Core standards, they
draw fire from
conservatives like Fox News personality Michelle Malkin, who object to
government intrusion in education.
The tests are also opposed by many teachers unions, ordinarily no ally
of the conservative movement. Those unions oppose linking students test
results to teacher evaluation scores.
In New York, the state teachers unions ran robo calls to its members
reminding them their children could opt out.
But for the most part, the opt out movement seems to have emerged from
a kind of digital grassroots with parents spreading the word on Facebook
and other social media platforms.
The Facebook group, for example, Long Island Opt Out, one of the
biggest, has almost 22,000 members. They`re even keeping a spreadsheet
tracking the number of students who refuse the test in each individual
school district on Long Island.
Up next, I will talk with the person behind New York State`s
assessment and one of the most prominent critics of high stakes testing.
HAYES: All right, joining me now as promised, Diane Ravitch, former
assistant secretary of education under President George H.W. Bush, author
of the “Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and
Undermining Education,” and Merryl Tisch, chancellor of the New York State
Board of Regent, the top education official in the state of New York
overseeing those tests today.
Let me start with you, Miss Tisch. When you see the reports of the
opting out, the numbers from West Seneca, which are pretty striking, I got
to say, is your reaction people are crazy? Or is your reaction we`re doing
MERRYL TISCH, NEW YORK STATE BOARD OF REGEANTS: My reaction is
obviously not that people are crazy. I think people should act in what
they perceive to be the best interests of their children. And perhaps from
our perspective we have not been clear enough in describing the intent of
The intent of the test is to give a snapshot of performance and allow
parents to know where their children are at any given point in their
educational career as compared to their peers.
If you talk about income inequality in this country, income inequality
is directly tied to the achievement gap for our poor students. Those
students, if they are not given access and opportunity to high quality
education, they simply cannot move along at a continuum.
HAYES: OK. But there`s a whole – let`s sort of bracket for a
sort of sociology of poverty for a moment, right – no because – I mean,
we could go around – there`s lot of things I could contest about whether
that link in what direct the causation of that link flows, right, but so
here`s the question to you Miss Ravitch is I had someone who works in
education who I respect compare testing opt out to people opting out of
immunization, because basically it was like, look, yeah, your kid is
probably not going to get measles and like if you think there`s some
downside you can opt out, but then you`re just a free rider because the
policy as a whole is a necessary means of figuring out where people are,
assessing, right. You need this data.
If you start allowing people to opt out, you`ve just destroyed the
entire dataset. Like, what are they going to do in West Seneca to judge
anything year over year when one year they have data and the next they
don`t have any data?
DIANE RAVITCH, AUTHOR: It`s totally inappropriate to compare opting
out of testing to opting out of immunization – one has a scientific basis,
the other has none. The tests that kids take today have nothing to do with
the tests that we took when we were kids. When we were kids, we took an
hour test to see how we did in reading, an hour test to so how we did in
math. Children today in third grade are taking eight hours of testing.
They`re spending more time takes tests than people taking the bar exam.
Now, when we talk about the results of the test, they come back four
to six months later. The kids already have a different teacher. And all
they get is a score and a ranking. The teachers can`t see the item
analysis. They can`t see what the kids got wrong. They can`t – they`re
getting no instructional gain, no possibility of improvement for the kids,
because there`s no value to the test. They have no diagnostic value.
If you go to a doctor and you say I have a pain, and the doctor says
I`ll get back to new six months and he gets back to you and tells you how
you compare everyone else in the state, but he doesn`t have any medicine
HAYES: Respond to that.
TISCH: Well, I would say that the tests are really a diagnostic tool
that is used to inform instruction and curriculum development throughout
the state. New York State spends $54 billion a year on educating 3.2
million schoolchildren. For $54 billion a year I think New Yorkers deserve
a snapshot of how our kids are doing, how our schools are doing, how our
systems are doing.
There is an important data point…
HAYES: Wait. I let me just say this, though, I just want to point
out something. That was interestingly nonresponsive to what she said,
right. She`s saying this does not work as diagnostic tool for the child or
for the teacher, you`re saying this is a diagnostic tool for the taxpayer
who is funding the system to see if the system is working, right, those are
TISCH: No, let me finish because we`re talking about what happens
when parents opt out and what the system can then report back to parents
and to the state. The point of the matter is, you know, two weeks ago I
was with my grandson at a pediatric visit. There was a new mother sitting
next to me and she was comparing growth charts for her 4-year-old – for
her 4-month-old son. She wanted to know how he was doing on a continuum.
It is natural for parents to want to know how their kids are doing.
And as for the diagnostic nature of these tests and the amount of
information that is gleaned from them, school districts report to us all
the time that they design
curriculum around the results of these tests.
I agree with Diane. There is no such thing as a perfect test,
absolutely not. But the ability to glean information from these tests and
use them in very direct ways to inform instruction and curriculum in
classrooms is actually really important.
HAYES: OK, so let me ask you this, is this – the problem here one of
conception or execution? Which is to say is it that the entire model of
essentially that we have here, right, which is aligning the curriculum with
standards, testing to see if the children can meet these standards, and
then using as a sort of accountability device, that model is flawed or the
actual implementation and the testing itself is flawed?
RAVICH: The model is flawed. You will not find any prep school, any
private school in the state of New York or in any state that uses this
model. They trust teachers to judge…
HAYES: But they have such a different student body. I mean, isn`t
that apples and oranges?
RAVICH: No, no. It doesn`t matter. You`re not helping poor kids when
you put so much emphasis on the test that they lose arts, they lose
physical education, they lose recess and they lose almost everything except
test prep and they spend months doing test prep.
HAYES: So this is an important point, though. I`m just – this is
not about what is in the test, this is about emphasis on the test.
RAVICH: The model is wrong.
We are the most overtested nation in the world. If you look at the
top ten high performing nations in the world they do not test every child
every year. They test them at the end of sixth grade. Canada tests kids
in the third grade and the six grade. Nobody tests kids every year.
HAYES: Let me ask you this – you have an opportunity to speak to
parents who might be watching this. What do you want to tell them about
TISCH: I would like to say that tomorrow was the second day of
testing. And I would hope that parents would understand that if we had not
linked through policy the evaluation of teachers to the testing I think
more kids would be showing up for testing. Actually, I would say to our
parents that our kids have got caught in the labor dispute between the
governor and the teacher`s union.
HAYES: I think that…
TISCH: …and I think kids are paying the price.
HAYES: That may be true here, but there`s a lot of places where that
isn`t true. Dian Ravich and Merryl Tisch, thank you both for being here
tonight. Appreciate it.
That is All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow show starts now.
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