All in with Chris Hayes, Transcript 1/4/2017
Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: January 4, 2017
Guest: Karen Bass; Jess McIntosh; Anton Gunn, Kevin de Leon, Adam Schiff,
Nancy Giles, Randal Pinkett
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: Thanks for being with us. “ALL IN” starts
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY), MINORITY LEADER: We`re united in our opposition
to these republican attempts to make America sick again.
REID: Democrats unite to fight for Obamacare as the President-elect warns
republicans over the risks of repeal.
MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES: And as he said this
morning in a tweet.
REID: Tonight, the fight to save Obamacare has officially begun and
democrats have a plan.
Plus, the headquarters of the resistance, California, hires a high-powered
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You don`t want to go there, OK?
REID: Inside Donald Trump`s love for Wikileaks as he escalates his fight
with American intelligence.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Wikileaks,
I love Wikileaks.
REID: And from Rockettes to marching bands to brand-name celebrities,
Donald Trump`s trouble attracting the star power he craves for his big day.
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: You are not summoned to perform
for the king or for the dictator.
REID: ALL IN starts now.”
Good evening from New York, I`m Joy Reid in for Chris Hayes. With just 16
days until Donald Trump becomes president, democrats say they have a battle
plan for what will be the first big fight of the Trump administration.
Obamacare, along with a fancy new slogan that they plan to use to make
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCHUMER: The republican plan to cut healthcare wouldn`t make America great
again, it would make America sick again.
REID: That was incoming democratic leader Senator Charles Schumer this
morning after Schumer and his democratic colleagues met on Capitol Hill
today with President Obama to discuss their strategy to fight GOP efforts
to repeal the health care law. Also on the Hill today was Vice President-
elect Mike Pence who vowed the GOP`s repeal and replace plans are on track.
PENCE: As I said today to members of the senate, that the first order of
business is to repeal and replace Obamacare.
REID: Senate republicans have now taken the first step in that direction,
voting today to start debate on a budget resolution to repeal substantial
parts of the law. But repeal is the easy part, it`s the replacement that`s
SCHUMER: For years they`ve talked about repeal but for five years now they
have had nothing to put in its place. Now, they`re responsible for the
entire health care system and it will be on their backs and I believe a
year from now, they will regret that they came out so fast out of the box
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Now, democrats can`t stop republicans from hobbling Obamacare, but
they can help make the process politically painful and potentially
disastrous for the GOP, and they have a strategy. As POLITICO reports,
democrats plan to hold rallies in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia,
featuring Americans who have benefited from the law. Leading up to
nationwide rallies on January 15th warning of the chaos they say would
ensue if the law is repealed. Democrats also plan to use the amendment
process to force republican to take politically toxic votes on popular
provisions like protecting people with pre-existing conditions. And
they`re encouraging Americans to bombard their representatives with phone
calls opposing repeal. Republicans have signaled, they plan to repeal the
health care law in the near term, but maybe delay the effective date
possibly for years as they work on a replacement.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: We have a plan to replace it.
We have plenty of ideas to replace it, and you`ll see as the weeks and
months unfold, what we`re talking about replacing it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: But voting for repeal while delaying a replacement could mean
massive financial losses for hospitals and insurers and potentially result
in millions of Americans losing their healthcare coverage. The American
medical association yesterday came out against the delayed replacement plan
and some prominent republicans, including Senator Rand Paul, are warning
about problems if they delay on a replacement. But republicans don`t have
much in the way of good options. Replacing the law effectively means
overhauling the entire American health care system. And let`s just say
that`s not an easy task. Just ask democrats, especially if you want to
keep the parts of Obamacare that Americans like.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LESLEY STAHL, AMERICAN TELEVISION JOURNALIST: When you replace it, are you
going to make sure that people with pre-conditions are still covered?
TRUMP: Yes, because it happens to be one of the strongest assets.
STAHL: You`re going to keep that.
TRUMP: Also, with the children living with their parents for an extended
period we`re going to –.
STAHL: You`re going to keep that?
TRUMP: – very much try and keep that in. Adds cost but it`s very much
something we`re going to try and keep.
REID: Well, Donald, you can`t keep all the good stuff like coverage for
people with pre-existing conditions while eliminating the ostensibly bad
stuff like the individual mandate that make that coverage possible. Trump
himself seems to realize the political peril his party now faces and today,
he seemed to walk pretty close to opposing repeal, Trump tweeting that,
“Republicans must be careful in that the Dems own the failed ObamaCare
disaster” and later adding “it will fall of its own weight, be careful”.
Now even if that were true and it most likely is not true, it would be
political suicide for republicans to simply let the law stand after
spending years and years casting it as a democracy-threatening disaster.
But the costs of repeal could be very, very high, particularly in the
Rustbelt States that narrowly gave Trump his win. Take a look at these
maps. The one on the left shows the percentage of Americans with health
care coverage in 2013. See how it`s all dark there? And look at the one
on the right. It shows the percentage of Americans with coverage in 2016.
See, see all that light blue there on 2016 map? That`s where people got
coverage and as you can see it was disproportionately right in those rust
belt states. Well, now millions of people in those states face the
possibility of losing their health care coverage and the party that is
poised to take it away, that coverage, doesn`t seem to have any real plan
in place to replace it. This morning on MSNBC, West Virginia Senator Joe
Manchin, arguably the most conservative democrat in the senate, laid out
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D), WEST VIRGINIA: Donald Trump won West Virginia by 43
percent. 43 percent. Unbelievable, OK? Now, a lot of the people didn`t
know and they really still don`t know how they got health care called
Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, but I`ll assure you one thing, they`ll
know when – who did it and got rid of it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Exactly.
MANCHIN: They`ll know that. They might not know how they got it, they`ll
know how they got rid of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Joining me now is Democratic Representative Karen Bass of
California. All right, congresswoman. So the last thing that you just
heard from Joe Manchin who`s arguably – I mean, he is quite a red state
conservative. As democrat his – Trump won his state by 43 percent but you
heard him say “a lot of people don`t know, they really still don`t know how
they got health care called ObamaCare but they`re sure going to know who
got rid of it for them.” What is the democrats` plan to let those people
know if republicans get rid of their health care, who done it?
REP. KAREN BASS (D), CALIFORNIA: Well, you know, I think first of all a
lot of people think that Obamacare just covered people that didn`t have
insurance. There`s a whole lot of parts to the plan that cover everybody,
such as pre-existing conditions. Our health care caps. You know, I used
to work in the emergency room in Los Angeles and the people that come to
the emergency room or who came during those years were people who, one, had
caps. In other words, I was on chemotherapy for two months, my insurance
company said I hit my limit, they won`t cover my chemo anymore. Or
somebody who had diabetes or hypertension and they couldn`t get health
insurance so they come to the emergency room as a last resort. So if they
get rid of Obamacare, those people will be back flooding emergency rooms
and that`s one thing that has happened since ACA has been in place.
You`ve seen a decline of people who use the emergency room. Another thing
is for prevention care. So you go and you have your colonoscopy. Well,
you didn`t realize that with Obamacare, you now no longer pay for that
colonoscopy. So if they get rid of Obamacare, you are going to have people
complaining all over the place that, one, they didn`t have – they don`t
have coverage anymore, they`ve been cut off, they`ve been kicked off, and,
two, the costs are going up because they`re – they are paying for things
they didn`t cover when they had Obamacare. People will realize the
REID: Yeah, imagine people going into their doctors` offices and suddenly
finding out they have a co-pay they didn`t have. Are democrats then going
to make the connection? Because congresswoman, I got to tell you. One of
the biggest criticisms of the party, even at the president, has been that
when Obamacare was rolled out, democrats kind of walked away from it, some
ran away from it, but never really explained to people what Obamacare is.
A lot of people have what they had connect and in Kentucky and didn`t know
that it was Obamacare.
BASS: I agree.
REID: Are the democrats going to do something concrete, meaning to run
ads, meaning have specific stories showing, so that people know no, no, no,
when you`re getting that co-pay, that was Obamacare?
BASS: Exactly, that`s absolutely right. And I agree with you. The other
thing that I don`t think that we pointed out is that Obamacare has been a
jobs plan. So when you talk about cutting off Obamacare, you are talking
about serious layoffs in – that are going to happen in hospitals because
rural hospitals have had to depend on it. And a lot of these hospitals are
in republican states. And so, I think the pain is going to be very wide
and very deep and it is going to be our responsibility to make it very,
very specific. I can tell you that my phones in the capital and in my
district office were flooded today with people calling up and saying, well,
is my insurance going to be cut off now? Am I going to have to pay for
this? Well you know, I`ve had cancer, you know the only way I`ve been able
to get health care is because of Obamacare so when the faucet is shut off,
I believe the pain is going to be deep, it`s going to be wide and it is our
responsibility to make sure that everybody understands who is responsible.
REID: Yeah, it`s pretty pointed that the three states you guys are
starting off are in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and one West Virginia. Think about
those coal miners` benefits for their black lung. That`s Obamacare.
REID: All right, I want to ask you a quick question on your way out.
Mitch McConnell had a pretty interesting– we`ll take a quick U-turn for a
moment. Mitch McConnell had a little pretty interesting quote today that I
want to play for you, and it`s about another thing that republicans have
been holding up, and that`s the Supreme Court seat, which they held open
for a very long time because they didn`t think Barack Obama as president
had the right to make a nomination. Take a look at Mitch McConnell talking
about democrats pretention holding up a Supreme Court nominee of Donald
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MITCH MCCONELL (R-KY), MAJORITY LEAER: Apparently, you had a new
standard now, which is do not confirm a Supreme Court nominee at all. I
think that`s something the American people simply will not tolerate.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BASS: I mean, I can`t believe that he actually even said that when he was
the one that said that they were not going to even have hearings,
confirmation hearings. Well you know what, I`m very proud of the senate.
I hope they hold that line. The idea that Trump, I mean, if his cabinet is
any example as to who he would put forward would be on the Supreme Court,
it would be disastrous. And I can see that protections that we`ve had in
our country for decades being rolled back, so I think it`s a great stand.
We need to emulate what the republicans did in 2016.
REID: Yeah, I – that had nothing do with Obamacare, I just want to give
you a chance to hear him say that and get your response. Congresswoman
Karen Bass, thank you for your time tonight. I appreciate it.
BASS: Thanks for having me on.
REID: All right, joining me now, Democratic Strategist Jess McIntosh and
Anton Gunn, who is a healthcare strategist extraordinaire. I`m going to
come to you first on this, Jess, because here`s the thing. Republicans
have been saying for so long that they`re going to repeal, repeal or
replace, repeal and replace. It`s – a catch phrase but they never had a
risk of ever having to do it because they always had Barack Obama to save
them from themselves.
JESS MCINTOSH, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Right.
REID: Now that they have to do it, do you think they will actually go
MCINTOSH: You know I don`t. I think the republicans really like to govern
by catch phrase because they don`t actually like to govern. The reason why
the president spent so much political capital putting the Affordable Care
Act and remember how long and awful it was to be a democrat working on the
Hill at that moment, that was, that was really intense. He did that, we
all did that, because it mattered so much. Because we cared so much about
making sure that millions of Americans got insurance who didn`t have it
before. We cared about fixing that problem because democrats believe the
government can fix certain problems that need to be fixed. Republicans
don`t share that belief, at least the republicans today don`t. They don`t
believe that government is a solution to the problems that America is
facing. So they, they obstruct.
They, they use this catch phrase obstructionism and that`s how they brand
their party. Their party is very little more than a brand right now. Now,
we have to see them actually implement these tenets. No one is going to be
spending political capital to get this done. No one is going to put their
name on we`re going to have the replace package here, and if Trump decides
to start tweeting that the republicans in congress are doing it wrong,
they`re going to turn around and run away faster than it will make his head
REID: Well – the thing is, there once was a republican health care plan.
It`s called Obamacare.
MCINTOSH: Yeah, they did that.
REID: So since democrats took their plan, right, and there isn`t a new
plan on the table, they keep saying “oh no, we`ve got a secret plan, we`ve
got a secret plan”, what would be the political you know, importer, or
political – what are the incentive to go through the same senate finance
process that we saw democrats go through, to go through that excruciating
public horrible process of trying to reconfigure the entire American health
care system in public? Would that help republicans at all politically?
MCINTOSH: No, I mean, it certainly didn`t help democrats politically and–
especially when democrats had to do it while republicans were standing
there yelling “death penal and you`re going to push grandma off a cliff”.
If we go back to a system where, like congresswoman bass was saying “chemo
patients are kicked off their insurance after a couple sessions”, that is
an actual death penal. That you really will have Americans saying I can`t
afford life-saving treatment.
MCINTOSH: So you`re going to do it under the guise of real stories being
told. It`s not going to be a talking point. It`s not going to be a Sarah
Palin blog post. It`s going to be actual Americans who live in the states
that these people are supposed to be representing. So there`s this, this
other layer that they have to get through which is the political perception
of what happens when they yank health care away from millions of Americans
who need it.
REID: Well, then there`s the part two, because the thing republicans are
actually quite good at is the atmospherics, it`s the staging. And they
were able to create this thing called the tea party that started about
calling homeowners deadbeats if they couldn`t pay their mortgages but
suddenly became this really well-funded faux grass-roots kind of thing,
which just went after health care every minute, every minute. It had all
the optics that you needed. Do you see evidence that democrats can figure
out how to message discipline, get an-you know, adds on the air and
actually do the mechanics of politicking?
MCINTOSH: I don`t think that we can replicate the republican strategy
because we are bound by principle and we are bound by an ideology that
government is supposed to do good for the people that it`s-represented to,
or that it`s elected to represent. I don`t think that we can have a
Democratic Tea Party. That said, I think that we can do a much better job
of sloganeering and running ads and telling real people stories. It`s not
about getting everybody to wear shirts that`s say “Make America Sick
Again”. It`s making sure America knows the real-life consequences to their
families and neighbors of what republicans are trying to do. That`s the
REID: And I do believe now we have Anton Gunn, a health care strategist
who used to be with the Department of Health and Human Services. So Anton,
let`s talk about sort of the practical things, what democrats would
actually be showing the country is happening as ObamaCare is rolled back.
Can you talk about how – can you possibly unwind this law without – and
leave in place, let`s say, leaving somebody who`s 26 on your insurance?
Can you do both those things?
ANTON GUNN, HEALTH CARE STRATEGIST AND FORMER HEAD OF THE OFFICE OF
EXTERNAL AFFAIRS AT THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES: You
can`t do both things. See, the biggest problem is most people have no full
understanding of all the incredible things the Affordable Care Act has done
over the last six years because they`re not having the conversation with
the right people. If you talk to any CEO that runs a large hospital in any
major metropolitan area, whether you`re talking about Detroit, in Henry
Ford, or you`re talking about Tulane Medical Center, these are major health
care systems who are taking care of the people who now have coverage
because of the Affordable Care Act. These are people who are getting
treatment for very important life-saving conditions that will all go away
if they try to undo this law.
So, you can`t just say you want to do one part and can`t do the other
because there`s so many benefits beyond the insurance. We love to talk
about the under 26. We love to talk about a 20 million people who now have
coverage. But what about the mom who had a baby and was finally covered
after her first child wasn`t covered at all and she had to pay out of
pocket $17,000 because her pregnancy was considered a pre-exist condition?
What about the father who didn`t get a double bypass when he need it and
passed away because he didn`t have health insurance coverage? These people
are now getting treatment all across the country and so you can`t undo
parts of it. You can`t undo the fact that we`ve improved the quality of
care that people received in healthcare because the ACA put so much more of
framework around delivering value for people who are using health care
services, improving doctors` ability to deliver care at a higher quality so
that people can actually get better faster and live the lives that they
want and deserve.
So, all of this conversation around we got multiple plans. Well, if you`ve
got multiple plans, that means you don`t have a plan at all. And so you
can`t repeal the ACA and leave this gaping hole in a health care system
that has been reformed, I mean, it`s almost like the conversation about
whether you should eat broccoli and spinach. Everybody knows broccoli and
spinach is good for you. And what the republicans are trying to get us to
do is understand that we don`t need broccoli and spinach, they want to give
us a happy meal box, but they`re not going to tell us what`s in the happy
meal box. But what I`m clear about, broccoli and spinach is good for you
whether you like it or not and happy meals are not good for you at all. So
we got to get beyond this conversation and the rhetoric and get deeper into
what the law is actually doing to save people`s lives.
REID: But here`s the thing, because, you know, happy meals are really well
advertised as well. I mean, Anton, very quickly, why didn`t the
administration advertise all these great things years and years ago so that
people felt the value and understood the value of the Affordable Care Act.
I mean, you have southern states that are letting rural hospitals close
rather than take the expansion of Medicaid because they`ve been able to
convince their own citizens who are suffering that it`s better to suffer
than have Obamacare. Why wasn`t all this message rolled out before?
GUNN: Well, see, that`s the funny thing. We did roll all of these
messages out before. We spent a lot of time doing it. But the problem is,
when you spend a billion dollars trying to confuse, distract and dissipate
the whole idea that health care reform needed to be done and the benefits
of the law, it`s hard to fight those messages. When you have members of
congress that are willing to go on television and radio shows and tell
bold-face lies about the, you know, what the Affordable Care Act is but
have no clue about it, it`s hard to beat against that. And we did
everything in our power to try to convey those messages but frankly most of
the American public didn`t want to hear those messages. They`re into the
catch phrases, as we heard, they`re into the 142nd characters, but it`s
hard to talk about payment reform and delivery system reform in 140
characters. It`s hard to talk about in a snapshot and a sound bite.
But it`s easy to talk about it when you talk to a family who`s gotten life-
saving treatment at a place where they were uninsured five years ago. They
walked into the emergency room. They could not get treatment that they
needed but now they`re getting care and they`re getting better. And so
I`ve talked to these CEOs and health systems, I`ve talked to the leaders
who run hospitals, I work with a lot them and they believe the Affordable
Care Act means a whole lot to them and it`s allowing them the opportunity
to do what they do best, and that is to save lives. And I`m not talking
one or two lives, I`m talking tens of millions of lives in cities all
across the country.
REID: Yeah, well we do know for certain that now, that the uninsured rate
in 2009 was 16.4 percent, now it`s 10.9 percent. I wish we had more time,
one word answer for each of you Anton and Jess, yes or no, do republicans
fully repeal and not replace the Affordable Care Act or do they repeal and
replace it? Yes or no do they repeal it, Anton?
GUNN: They`re going to repeal it. I believe they`ll do that. Yes.
REID: All right, bold prediction from Jess McIntosh. Anton Gunn and Jess
McIntosh, thanks to both of you.
And still ahead, Obamacare is just one of the battles democrats are
preparing for in the Trump era. Up next, California takes bold moves to
brace for the incoming President, recruiting a former U.S. Attorney
General. And later, Donald Trump`s self-imposed deadline for repealing
allegedly new information on the Russian hacking has come and gone.
The incoming president escalated his fight today with his own intelligence
agencies, meanwhile. So inside Donald Trump`s love affair with WikiLeaks
REID: Opponents of Donald Trump, particularly frustrated liberals, are
looking for ways to properly channel their anger and their deep foreboding
into a strategy for fighting back. Not just against Trump but against also
the 115th congress which is likely to make their agenda, Trump`s agenda,
along with threatening even cherished programs like Medicare. And perhaps
the strongest challenge comes from the world`s sixth-largest economy – the
state of California. Already, the University of California System has said
that it would fight Trump on immigration. U.C. President, Janet
Napolitano, said in a statement last month that the university would
“vigorously protect the privacy and civil rights of the undocumented
members of the U.C. Community”.
And Governor Jerry Brown has vowed to challenge any attempt to – by Trump
to interfere with climate science. But today, in what appears to be a
rather exceptional move, the state legislature hired Barack Obama`s former
Attorney General Eric Holder to represent them in any legal fights against
the new republican White House. It`s a move that seems to signal that
California is poised to become America`s liberal front line against the
And joining me now is Kevin de Leon, California`s Senate leader. So Kevin,
explain to us the process or the decision to hire Eric Holder and how that
different – differences from having or how that`s different from having an
KEVIN DE LEON, CALIFORNIA`S SENATE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you very much,
Joy, for the invitation. It`s an honor to be here with each and every one
of you. I will say right now that we`re confronting a dichotomy of
democracy. Where it appears that, it`s something unique in our history,
and it appears that the most overt opponent to our state of the state
appears to be the incoming head of state, and that is the President-elect,
Donald J. Trump. Given the campaign rhetoric, one of the most bruising and
controversial polemic and polarizing campaigns in modern political history,
we actually thought perhaps this is just campaign rhetoric.
But it`s very clear that our worst fears were being confirmed. After he`s
appointed individuals to head up HHS that want to dismantle and eviscerate
the Affordable Care Act. When the Kris Kobach, the chief architect of of
senate bill 1050 of Arizona is one of his close political counselors and we
have someone like Jeff Sessions to be the nominee of the Department of
Justice, that sent a very clear message to us in California that these
individuals would be – would pose a clear and present danger to the
economic prosperity and the well-being of the values and the people of
California. So that`s why we have secured the legal services of the recent
former attorney general of the United States, Eric Holder. We`re very
proud that he will be representing us, providing legal strategy and counsel
and he`ll be working very closely with the incoming attorney general as a
legal team. I think the more legal firepower the better for the state of
California and for the people of California.
REID: Well, it`s certainly unprecedented. And of course Xavier Becerra is
going to be the attorney general replacing Kamala Harris. So, you walked
us through, why Holder? Tell us what, from California`s point of view,
are, let`s say the three most pressing issues. The things you`re most
worried about. You ticked off a few, but what are the three areas of
greatest concern for Californian?
DE LEON: Three areas of greatest concern in California obviously is health
care, the ACA. We have 6.5 million Californians of every single hue, every
geographical area in the state, who had benefitted greatly from the ACA.
If, in fact, Tom Price and Donald Trump moves forward by eviscerating, and
the republicans in–on the Hill by eviscerating the ACA, you`ll have 6.5
million Californians who will no longer have any access to any type of
health care. This is equal to a middle-class tax increase on Californians
who have to foot the bill for people end up in the emergency rooms for
their care. That is the big issue. And that would be a big economic blow
for California, because we have roughly about 200,000 jobs in the health
care service industry that directly related to ACA.
Second thing, is climate change, environmental protections, the clean air
that we breathe into our lungs, the clean water that our children drink
every single day. If they roll back regulations and actually dirty our air
with more harmful toxic pollutants, people are going to get sick,
especially children. And lastly–
REID: The third thing?
DE LEON: The third thing is separating children from their mothers which
is massive deportations. Expanding the criteria of who is a violent
criminal felon and actually making mothers and nannies, you know, criminal
felons and separating children from their mothers. So those are three big
issues for us in California.
REID: Yeah, well, Kevin de Leon, one out of eight Americans live in
California, sixth-largest economy in the world. So it could have a huge
effect on the rest of the country. As California goes, so maybe goes the
nation. Kevin de Leon, thank you very much for being with us.
DE LEON: Thank you very much.
REID: And coming up, why Donald Trump would take the word of Julian
Assange over U.S. intelligence. A look at Trump`s recent love for
WikiLeaks after this quick break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did Russia give you this information or anybody
associated with Russia?
JULIAN ASSANGE, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF OF WIKILEAKS: Our force is not a state
party so the answer for our interactions is no.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: WikiLeaks Chief Julian Assange in an interview on fox news last
night, denying the Russian government was the source of thousands of hacked
Democratic Party emails released by Wikileaks during the campaign.
Notably, Assange specifically rules out that his source was a quote “state
party”. Meaning, he didn`t exactly say the leaks had no connection to
Nevertheless, his denial seems to have impressed one Donald J. Trump who
used his favorite means of communications to state this morning – to state
this morning, “Julian Assange said, a 14-year-old could have hacked
Podesta,” Hillary Clinton`s campaign chair – who is Hillary Clinton`s
campaign chair, “why was DNC so careless? Also said Russians did not give
him the info!”
One might ask why the soon to be President of the United States would take
the word of the guy, said to have leaked stolen American emails over the
conclusions of the entire U.S. Intelligence Community, delivered with utter
unanimity and about as much as certainty as you can get in matters like
these. By the way, today was the day that Trump said that he would reveal
his own secret information about the hacks, still no word on that. And
this isn`t the first time that Trump has appeared to favor Assange and his
organization. During the campaign, he repeatedly hailed Wikileaks for
releasing information that hurt his opponent, Hillary Clinton.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL-ELECT: This just came out. This just came
out. Wikileaks, I love Wikileaks. Wikileaks has provided things that are
unbelievable. Boy, that Wikileaks has done a job on her, hasn`t it? Oh,
we love Wikileaks. Boy, they have really – Wikileaks. Wikileaks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: But it was just a few short years ago that Trump was singing a very
different tune. In 2010, Wikileaks released hundreds of thousands of
military communications and diplomatic cables which, at the time, were seen
as damaging to the U.S. Trump was asked about it backstage at Fox News.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He claims it will be on, he`ll talk about Wikileaks.
You had nothing to do with Wikileaks.
TRUMP: No, but I think it`s disgraceful. I think there should be death
penalty or something.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Same goes for Fox News host, Sean Hannity, who flew all the way to
the U.K. this week to interview Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London
where the Australian has been living since granted asylum there in 2012.
Assange still faces extradition to Sweden on charges of rape and sexual
Hannity has been full of praise for his interview subject, including
once telling Assange “I do hope you get free one day.” But it was a very
different story back in 2010 when he devoted an entire segment to
questioning why the Obama administration had yet to put Assange behind
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST “HANNITY”: These are real lives that are now
in jeopardy and in danger. That was step one. Then 390,000 other
documents were released, many of them classified documents and now we have
this. What is – why? Why didn`t they go after this guy? Why didn`t they
arrest him? Why didn`t they stop this from being published when we had so
much time to do it?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Even Sarah Palin, who was herself hacked by Wikileaks in 2008 and
who later called Assange, quote, “An anti-American operative with blood on
his hands” even she did an about-face today, actually apologizing to
Assange on her Facebook page. She apologized.
Not even – not every Republican is jumping on the Wikileaks
bandwagon. Today House Speaker Paul Ryan called Julian Assange, quote, “A
sycophant for Russia.” Well, Senator Lindsey Graham had a forceful message
for Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: I hope the president-elect
will get his information and trust the American patriots who work in the
intelligence community who swear oath and allegiance to the Constitution
and not some guy hiding from the law who has a record of undercutting and
undermining American democracy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Tonight, a new report suggests Trump`s friction with the
intelligence community is not just rhetorical. The president-elect`s plans
for the U.S. top spy agency next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You take on the intelligence community they have six
ways from Sunday of getting back at you. So even for a practical
supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he`s being really dumb to do this.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What do you think the intelligence community would do
if they were motivated to?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t know, but from what I am told they are very
upset about how he has treated them and talked about them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: I`m joined by Congressman Adam Schiff, Democrat from California, and
a ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee. Congressman, thank
you for being here.
I will pick up and ask you the same question that my colleague
Rachel Maddow asked Chuck Schumer. You sit on the Intelligence Committee,
what has been the reaction of the leaders of the intelligence community to
just being essentially spurned by the incoming president?
REPRESENTATIVE ADAM SCHIFF (D), CALIFORNIA: I think people are really
incredulous that he continues to take the side of the kremlin that
essentially he disregards what the intelligence community has to say of the
enormous consensus among the intelligence agencies that basically because
the facts are at odds with his own preferred version of events, he is going
to shun and ignore what the intelligence community has to say.
I`m running out of adjectives and expletives to describe the
situation. It`s really so appalling and here he is taking the side of
Julian Assange, you know, I think what it does show more than anything else
is that in Donald Trump`s world, you`re for him or against him.
Here during the campaign what the Russians did was helpful, he`s not
going to bite the hand that fed him and what Wikileaks did was helpful and
so he`s going to praise them, but as you saw in those clips that you played
of Sean Hannity before and after, Donald Trump before and after, there`s no
consistency here at all far from it.
One final point I would make because I think the president spoke to
this so eloquently during his press conference a couple weeks ago, what we
are seeing here is such a hyper-partisan environment within the GOP that
they are willing to overlook all the qualms that they have about Russia
over the last half century or more.
They`re willing to overlook the way that Julian Assange has
endangered our national interests. If it`s good for the Republicans and
bad for the Democrats and that is a terrible development in our democracy.
REID: Congressman, do you get the sense that is lasting? That Republicans
and Donald Trump are going to continue to have this fealty or to give
Russia a huge pass on even spying on American and hacking into American e-
mails and give Assange a huge pass? Do you think that`s lasting or do you
think it`s temporary because they don`t want Donald Trump`s election to
SCHIFF: I think it`s temporary because a lot of the members of the House
and some in the Senate have districts or states where Trump is more popular
than they are, they`re still afraid of their own shadow, but you have
courageous GOP member who are speaking out, people like McCain who are not
going to sit idly by while Trump takes actions that are unamicable to our
national security and cozy up to the kremlin. I think others will find
their voice too.
REID: Congressman, in closing, there is a report in the “Wall Street
Journal,” they`re reporting the incoming Trump administration is looking to
actually make serious restructuring, a change both the director of National
Intelligence Office to essentially cut it and also make changes and
restructuring to the CIA.
Cutting back on staffing at the Virginia headquarters, moving people
into field posts, that kind of thing. That seems alarming and a response,
maybe, to what Donald Trump doesn`t believe or believes from the
intelligence agency. What do you make of those proposals?
SCHIFF: I think that`s exactly right. If this “Wall Street Journal”
report is accurate, under the guise, ironically, of saying we want to
depoliticize the office of the director of National Intelligence or the
CIA, what the president-elect would be doing is exactly the opposite, would
be politicizing it, would be effectively punishing the intelligence
agencies for speaking the truth. Punishing them for speaking out about
Russian interference in our democracy. That would be a terrible step.
REID: Yes, it would certainly be unprecedented. Congressman Adam Schiff,
thank you very much.
SCHIFF: Thank you.
REID: Thank you. Coming up, top celebrities are making big plans for
inauguration day – to do just about anything but attend the actual event.
Why Donald Trump can`t stand the celebrity snubs, ahead.
Plus, tonight`s “Thing 1 and Thing 2” starts right after this break
so stick around.
REID: “Thing 1” tonight, after congressional Republicans ill-fated attempt
to gut the House Office of Congressional Ethics, we`ve heard a lot about
the cases of corruption both large and small that Congress`s independent
watchdog has investigated over the years.
Today, we learned some interesting details about a hair-raising
investigation by the oversight office that involves a GOP congressman and
his pet rabbit. That story is “Thing 2” in 60 seconds.
REID: Just yesterday, the House Office of Congressional Ethics survived an
11th-hour attempt by the new Republican Congress to gut its oversight
powers. Already we`re seeing the benefits of having a watchdog overseeing
the behavior of those in Congress.
For the past year, the OCE had been investigating Congressman Duncan
Hunter, that`s him vaping during a congressional hearing, for misuse of
campaign funds. The investigation into Congressman Hunter`s alleged misuse
of funds has been public for some time now.
But thanks to a comment made by his office in response to questions
about the OCE, we now know that one of the things Representative Hunter was
specifically being investigated for was spending $600 of his campaign`s
money on, quote, “in cabin rabbit transport fees.”
In other words, the congressman spent $600 in campaign donations on
airfare for his family`s pet rabbit. Rascally. Now a spokesperson for
Representative Hunter`s office told a local paper that the $600 rabbit ride
was mistakenly charged to his campaign account and that might be true.
But how to explain some other expenses that the OCE as well as the
Federal Elections Commission have been investigating? Expenses like $1,300
in steam video games spent over the course of two months. Another alleged
mistake his office blamed on his teenaged son or how about nearly $300 in
food from Jack-In-The-Box. Also a mistake.
The $1,200 in utility bill payments, also a mistake. The list of
mistakes goes on and on. So far, the congressman has yet to repay his
campaign upwards of $49,000 and the full report is set to come out some
time soon, perhaps forcing the poor Hunter family rabbit to fly coach.
REID: So for all his efforts to sell himself as a supremely successful
businessman and author of books on being a successful businessman, Donald
Trump has always sold himself as a celebrity, a showman. That`s been a
very important part of his persona to who he thinks he is.
Why else would he star in “The Apprentice” and “Celebrity
Apprentice?” And it clearly bothers him that having attain it had
presidency he feels he`s being robbed of the celebrity praise and affection
he feels his new standing deserves.
The frustration was showing when Trump tweeted “Jackie Evancho`s
album sales have skyrocketed after announcing her inauguration performance.
Some people just don`t understand the movement.”
Although what Trump calls skyrocketing others call a bump that
coincided with a TV appearance that she had made. The 16-year-old`s
“America`s Got Talent Season 5” runner-up is one of the few entertainers
who have accepted an invite to perform at the Trump inauguration.
So has country band, “Big and Rich,” and now with his inauguration
just 16 days away, Trump can really start fuming about comparisons to his
predecessor, President Barack Obama, who had performers like Aretha
Franklin sing at his actual inauguration.
And at the inaugural concert had Denzel Washington, Bruce
Springsteen, Mary J. Blige, Tom Hanks, Garth Brooks, and U2, and that`s
literally naming just a handful of the huge superstars from his first and
Beyonce, by the way, Queen Bey was involved in both Obama
inaugurations, both. When we return, Donald Trump is feeling disrespected.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL O`REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: The harsh truth is there is reverse
McCarthyism going on in the entertainment industry. The evidence is
there`s nobody booked.
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: Because they don`t want to –
O`REILLY: It`s two weeks away.
KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: They don`t want to play for Donald
KRAUTHAMMER: This is a republic.
KRAUTHAMMER: You are not summoned to perform for the king or for the
dictator. In some places if Kim Jong-Un calls you to sing you better show
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Celebrities refusing to participate in the Trump inauguration is
getting plenty of attention. Joining me now, Nancy Jiles, a contributor
for CBS News “60 Minutes” –
NANCY GILES, CONTRIBUTOR, CBS “SUNDAY MORNING”: Sunday morning.
REID: That`s right. And Randal Pinkett, winning contestant on “The
Apprentice,” which was hosted by one Donald J. Trump. Thank you for being
here. I have added you to other shows.
GILES: I love it.
REID: Correct your check. I`ll go to you first, Nancy, on this. It`s a
bitter shad and fruid (ph), I am sure, of people in the left that Donald
Trump cannot pull celebrities the way Barack Obama did or really George W.
Bush did for his inauguration. But is there anything to this idea put
forward, let`s give him a break –
GILES: The Bill O`Reilly idea?
REID: It`s not that they don`t want to perform for Donald Trump, but
they`re afraid that somehow the left will destroy them.
GILES: No, there`s nothing to it. And who would have ever thought in the
history of my life I`d be sitting here with the two of you saying I agree
with Charles Krauthammer. That`s really weird.
Bill O`Reilly is locked in the `50s where at that time the studio
heads did have a lot of power and there were fears of being on the wrong
list or accused of being a communist and people lost work and did control
Now come on, the stars control things way more than the studios do
and it`s a funny thing. If you start your campaign by saying Mexicans are
drug dealers and rapists, if you say things to black people like your lives
are hell, what do you have to lose?
If you say mean things about women, about grabbing their body parts
and saying that`s all right, it might offend people and make them not
necessarily want to lend their talents to your presidency. It`s weird,
REID: Who`d have thunk it? Randall, the other spin coming out of Trump
world is that Donald Trump doesn`t want those people, he wants the people.
He wants Jackie Evancho because she`s the movement. Do you – knowing
Donald Trump, having worked with Donald Trump and been on the show with
him, do you think it`s legit that he really doesn`t care whether
celebrities show up?
RANDAL PINKETT, FORMER WINNER, “THE APPRENTICE”: No, no Donald`s ego is
damaged right now. It`s bruised and an ego that can fill the room, right.
So there`s no mystery that he wants the most famous inaugural celebration
and he has to be fuming right now and what I`ve heard is we know Mark
Burnett is producing the inauguration.
REID: Who produced “The Apprentice.”
PINKETT: And he brought in Suzanne Bender, a former “Dancing with the
Stars” and “American Idol” producer at the last minute to pull off a Hail
Mary to try to get some celebrities to sign on because they`ve had such a
difficult time doing it. So I know Donald`s ego feeds off celebrity. It
fed off “The Apprentice,” it fed off “Celebrity Apprentice” and he`s not
happy with the way things stand –
REID: What do you think he`s blaming it? Do you think that Donald Trump
is capable of admitting that maybe the kind of campaign he ran and attacks
on these groups offend people in the arts community who have lots of LGBT
people and people of color?
PINKETT: Yes, I don`t think Donald will give the entertainment community
the credit they deserve from the standpoint I think people are really
standing on principle and you could look at the opportunity that they might
have to gain favor with Donald, we`ve seen that with the auto industry.
And for them to decline in my opinion when the opportunity to
perform at the inauguration has always been considered an honor, to decline
that means you must be standing on principle because you could have
REID: And Nancy, what do you think it says on the other side of it that
there has been so much cohesion in the arts community in opposing Trump?
GILES: I`m happy to hear that. It gives me hope because it`s been a
hopeless kind of time for me since the election and I`m glad to know people
that are creative and open and want to express themselves and create art
and move this world forward in many ways are united against hateful speech.
At the very least, even if it turns out he doesn`t believe anything he said
he still ran his campaign on smut, basically, smack.
GILES: And that don`t play with the arts.
REID: Yes, indeed. And I have to ask you before we go, Randal, there`s
been a big sort of to-do about Talladega`s marching band, a historically
black college, their band was supposed to perform, a lot of alumni are not
happy about it, it`s in my social media feed. The president said the
school hadn`t decided. Do you know whether they`ll perform?
PINKETT: The last report I got was that the Talladega marching band will
perform at the inauguration. There was a big debate amongst alumni and
students, many on the side of saying the school should not perform because
it would give the appearance of support of the president, which is the big
issue we`re talking about and the last report I heard is they will perform.
REID: Well, we shall see because there won`t be a lot of them. There are
no D.C. bands. Nancy Giles and Randal Pinkett, thank you both. That is
all for ALL IN this evening.
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