All In with Chris Hayes, Transcript 8/9/17 The Manafort Raid

Guests:
Tom Hamburger, Renato Mariotti, Natasha Bertrand
Transcript:

Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: August 9, 2017
Guest: Tom Hamburger, Renato Mariotti, Natasha Bertrand

STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC HOST: Thank you all for joining us. That`s HARDBALL
for now. Thank you for being with us. “ALL IN” with Chris Hayes starts
right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.

PAUL MANAFORT, TRUMP`S FORMER CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: I`m not looking for any
clients right now other than Mr. Trump.

HAYES: The FBI raided the home of a man who ran Donald Trump`s campaign.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: We have great
people. Paul Manafort

Paul Manafort has done an amazing job.

HAYES: Tonight, what we`re learning about the raid of Paul Manafort`s
home. What it means for an investigation that is more advanced than anyone
knew and what the Manafort raid means for the President of the United
States.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So to be clear, Mr. Trump has no financial
relationships with any Russian oligarchs?

MANAFORT: That`s what he said. That`s what I said. That`s obviously what
our position is.

HAYES: Then the White House confirms the President is improvising his
North Korea threats.

SEBASTIAN GORKA, PRESIDENT TRUMP`S DEPUTY ASSISTANT: We were a super
power. We are now a hyper power.

HAYES: And the growing back lash to the President`s plan for opioid abuse.

TRUMP: The best way to prevent drug addiction, that overdose is to prevent
people from abusing drugs in the first place.

HAYES: When all in starts right now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Good evening from New York, I`m Chris Hayes. Tonight, a dramatic
new chapter in the Russia investigation, news of a pre-dawn FBI raid at the
northern Virginia home of President Trump`s former Campaign Chairman, Paul
Manafort. Sources telling NBC News, the search is tied to the intense
investigation into Manafort`s business dealings and financial
relationships, both in the U.S. and abroad. After the Washington Post
broke the news this morning, Manafort spokesman confirmed it in a
statement, “FBI agents executed a search warrant at one of Mr. Manafort`s
residences.

Mr. Manafort has consistently cooperated with law enforcement and other
serious inquiries and did so on this occasion as well.” When the FBI is
executing a search warrant in your home, you really have no choice but to
cooperate. ABC News cites a source familiar with the investigation and
says a dozen armed FBI agents walked Manafort up by not being on his
bedroom door. Manafort`s friend and former lobbying partner Roger Stone
gave his version of events to Alex Jones today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ROGER STONE, POLITICAL CONSULTANT: Thugs authorized by Robert Mueller
kicked down the front door of Manafort`s home, proceeded to the bedroom,
kicked down the door to the - to the marital bedroom seeking documents that
they had never requested

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: The granting of the search warrant is a big development in this
case. It`s a sign that investigators do not trust that Manafort fully
responded to their subpoenas. In order to get a search warrant, Special
Counsel Robert Mueller and his team had to convince the Judge that there
was probable cause to believe that a serious crime had been committed and
that a search would likely turn up evidence related to that alleged crime.
The FBI search took place on July 26th. That`s one day after Manafort met
with the staffers at the Senate Intelligence Committee who are
investigating the Russia matter.

Notably, in the hours after the FBI raided Manafort`s home, President Trump
unleashed a misleading attack on the then Acting Director of the FBI,
Andrew McCabe, “why didn`t A.G. Sessions replace Acting FBI Director Andrew
McCabe? A Comey friend who was in charge of the Clinton investigation but
got big dollars, $700,000, for his wife`s political run from Hillary
Clinton and her representatives. The Trump administration has sought to
play down Manafort`s role but Manafort spent six months last year on
Trump`s campaign and ran it from June through August of 2016.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Paul Manafort has done an amazing job. He`s here someplace.
Where`s Paul? Paul Manafort. Good, he made it.

He doesn`t have to do this like I didn`t have to. He didn`t need to do
this but he wanted to because he saw something and he called me, he said,
this is something special.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Sources with knowledge of Mueller`s inquiry tell NBC News that FBI
investigators are looking at records tied to Manafort`s activities in
Ukraine, Cyprus and other parts of the world and they have plenty of
avenues to explore. In June, Manafort retroactively registered as foreign
agent disclosing that his consulting received more than $17 million in
secret payments from a Kremlin linked political party in Ukraine. Manafort
has also been accused of possible money laundering, both in the tax haven
of Cyprus and here in the United States where his all cash real estate
deals have raised flags among experts.

Manafort was also present along with Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner at
that infamous June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer who
had promised dirt on Hillary Clinton direct from the Russian government.
Manafort denies all wrong doing. Last July, when he was Trump`s campaign
chairman, Manafort was pressed on whether then candidate Trump had
financial ties to Russian oligarchs and whether Trump would release his tax
returns to put the issue to rest.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MANAFORT: Mr. Trump has said that his taxes are under audit and he will
not be releasing it. It has nothing to do with Russia. It has nothing to
do with any country other than the United States and his normal tax
auditing process. So that issue will be dealt with when the audits are
done

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So to be clear, Mr. Trump has no financial
relationships with any Russian oligarchs.

MANAFORT: That`s what he said. That`s what I said. That`s obviously what
our position is.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Joining me now, Washington Post Reporter Tom Hamburger who broke
the story of the Manafort raid with his colleagues at the Washington Post.
This strikes me as someone who follows this story closely, as an enormous
deal. Is that how you understand it?

TOM HAMBURGER, THE WASHINGTON POST REPORTER: Well, it is a significant
escalation and a sign of seriousness on the part of Robert Mueller and his
team of investigators to request and then gets a search warrant. And then
to execute that search warrant in the early morning hours at Paul
Manafort`s home is really quite a striking development. We don`t know
exactly what it means at this point but it is clearly an escalation, a sign
that Mueller is moving in a very deliberate and now a pretty quick fashion
and it is not good news obviously for Paul Manafort. And I can tell that
it`s unnerved others in the - in the Trump world as well.

HAYES: What do you mean by that?

HAMBURGER: Folks that we talked to at the White House, my colleague Phil
Rucker who covers the White House for us, has reported already that people
are just feeling a chilling effect from this. To know that the
investigation which was pooh poohed, it will be turn out that really
there`s nothing to these Russia charges and so forth, that now it has
proceeded to the point where the Special Prosecutor is asking a judge to
issue a search warrant. And search warrants are issued as you know Chris
based on probable cause of criminal wrongdoing. So this is a sign of
seriousness and it`s both surprising in some ways and it`s shaking at some
point.

HAYES: Obviously you can`t the back - your sources at the back ground of
your reporting but I will say, note, it is remarkable to me that this did
not get out for two weeks. I mean, 12 FBI agents showing up in a home in
Alexandria in the middle of the night, you know, people are going to notice
that. It is pretty striking we didn`t hear about this for two weeks.

HAMBURGER: It is striking I suppose in some ways. Maybe it`s a tribute to
the way in which Bob Mueller and his team and others and also Manafort and
his counselor kept things quiet. We had been hearing about it for a few
days and finally got confirmation from three separate sources and learned
just this morning just how dramatic this raid was occurring in the very
early morning hours about 6 a.m. or just before and surprising Paul
Manafort and his wife at home.

HAYES: Yes. So can you confirm and the detail, what do you know about how
they found out that there were a dozen armed FBI agents in their house?

HAMBURGER: Well, I heard you play a clip earlier. I got it from Paul
Manafort former business partner Roger Stone saying that they broke down
door and surprised Paul Manafort in his bedroom, cannot confirm that. What
we can confirm from those who are familiar with the situation is that
Manafort was surprised that this raid occurred in the early morning, and is
- and then it included numerous FBI agents who were wearing flak jackets.
I gather that that`s customary in these sorts of raids but it was very
surprising. I can tell that one of my colleagues at the Washington Post
was - found no evidence at the scene that there was a door that had been
battered down or that sort of thing. We would not be able to confirm that
but we do know there was an early morning raid and it did involve multiple
FBI agents and it was stunning to Paul Manafort, his wife, and his team.

HAYES: All right. Tom Hamburger, thank you for your time tonight.

HAMBURGER: Thanks.

HAYES: Joining me now, former Federal Prosecutor Renato Mariotti and MSNBC
Justice and Security Analyst Matthew Miller, former Chief Spokesperson at
the Department of Justice under President Obama. Renato let me start with
you. What - how significant is this as someone who is a former Federal
Prosecutor?

RENATO MARIOTTI, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: It`s very significant. What
it indicates is not only do Mueller and his team and the FBI agents that
they work with believe that there`s probable cause to believe that a crime
had been committed and that evidence of that crime was in Paul Manafort`s
home, but they had to go to a judge, a federal judge and get judge`s
approval of that warrant, which means judge actually agreed with the same
conclusion. So it is very significant because this is the first time you
had an independent third party, a federal judge indicate that he believed
that there was good reason to believe that a crime had occurred and was -
that evidence of it was in Paul Manafort`s home.

HAYES: Matt, you said on Twitter just a little while ago that this was
evidence of how quickly Mueller is moving. You even mused that you thought
he may even already have the President`s tax returns. Why do you say that?

MATHEW MILLER, MSNBC JUSTICE AND SECURITY ANALYST: You know, look, anyone
that has worked with Bob Mueller will tell you he`s not the kind of guy
that let the grass grow under his feet and he`s not been doing that in his
investigation. We now see that he has two grand juries open, one in
Virginia, one in Washington. He`s executed this dramatic raid on Paul
Manafort`s house, rather than issuing a subpoena and allowing Manafort to
comply that way. I think - I think what we have to assume from Mueller is
that he is pursuing this investigation as quickly as he can, as
aggressively as he can, through every channel that he can.

And one of those channels would be getting the President`s tax returns.
It`s funny you think about having to go to a judge to show probable cause
that a crime - that there`s evidence of a crime to execute the search
warrant. That`s actually a higher standard than he would have get to
obtain the President`s tax returns. You just have to show a judge that
it`s useful to his investigation, he could accomplish that.

HAYES: Renato, take me through the reasoning here of if you are - if you
had someone that is a target investigation, or someone who is involved in
an investigation, I know target is a slightly technical term here. But
someone that you`re talking to as a federal prosecutor, you want documents
from them, they have fancy lawyers who are complying with you and saying
we`re cooperating. What`s the trigger to go from that to 12 armed agents
in flak jackets at their residence in the middle of the night?

MARIOTTI: That`s an excellent question because the usual course of action
is to use a subpoena. To send a subpoena to the lawyers because then the
expense is on them. They`re going to spend the hours going through all the
documents, weeding out the ones that don`t matter, collecting them all,
putting them all with an index - you know, in an organized way, putting
them in a file that I can - that I could read or search et cetera, doing
all the work for me. To go and send agents in to conduct a search warrant
and seize documents is a pretty aggressive step.

What it means and what it suggests to me, is that Bob Mueller and his team
believed they would not have received the same information if they had
requested it via subpoena. And so that either means they`re concerned
about documents being destroyed or altered or they`re concern about an
assertion of Fifth Amendment privilege over the production of documents,
but they`re definitely concerned they`re not going to get the same
information. That`s what it would take.

HAYES: Matt, it also strikes me that Flynn and Manafort have always been
at the forefront of this and they`ve always seem to be the ones in the most
legal peril. How do you think this affects their calculations of their
decisions in terms of how cooperative to be?

MILLER: Yes. Both Flynn and Manafort are in a little bit of a present
dilemma right now. They each are kind of in a same situation where they
have three possible strategies. One it`s to continue to protest their
innocence and hope they don`t get indicted and fight an indictment if they
are indicted. Two is to cooperate. And you know, there`s usual a golden
ticket for the first person in to cooperate so I think they`ll be eyeing
each other wondering if the other one is going to go in and cooperate and
get the best chance for reduced sentence or no jail time. And then the
third is to continue to drag your heels and hope you eventually get a
pardon from the President. Obviously, that`s a lot to ask from the White
House, it would be greatly, hugely, politically controversial but it might
be the safest way out for both of those people.

HAYES: Renato, this may be a naive question but indulge it. If someone
was involved in a level of criminal conspiracy or criminal activity that
appears to be what`s being investigated here, would they just keep
incriminating documents in their house? It seems to me unlikely that if
you were doing the thing that you may be accused of doing, that you would
just have like incriminating documents around your house.

MARIOTTI: Well, that`s a great question. So first of all, let me - let me
answer your question this way as a starting point. They had to show the
judge, not only that there was a crime committed and that - but they
actually had to show the judge and convince the judge that there was
evidence that there would be things in that house that would constitute
evidence of a crime, so they`ve convinced the judge of that. And what I
would say is, you know, some people asked me on Twitter today, there was a
lot of discussion on my Twitter about, wouldn`t somebody already destroy
everything?

And I`ll tell you, I`m sure Paul Manafort has good lawyers. A good lawyer
is going to tell his client and I tell my clients don`t destroy anything.
That`s a separate crime, that`s going to be evidence of your guilt and the
least finger prints behind and there may be duplicates elsewhere, it`s a
bad thing to do. But there`s some - there`s no question that Bob Mueller
and his team have some evidence to suggest that he was keeping stuff at
home.

(CROSSTALK)

HAYES: In showing to the judge actually, it isn`t just probable cause that
a crime was committed but probable cause that there are things in the house
that they are serving the search warrant on that would be evidence of said
crime.

MARIOTTI: And specific things. So the stuff that they ceased, these
financial documents, they actually specify those in the warrants. So they
hadn`t know - I mean, who does that, right? I don`t keep in my house all
sorts of complex financial records. I doubt most people do. So they had
to have reason to believe that he was bringing that stuff home for some
reason.

HAYES: All right, Renato Mariotti and Matthew Miller, thanks to you both.

MILLER: Thanks.

HAYES: Coming up, the ties that bind the current President to the man
whose home was just raided by the FBI. Why today`s big news about Paul
Manafort could have massive implications for Donald Trump in two minutes.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEAN SPICER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: And then obviously
there`s been discussion of Paul Manafort who played a very limited role for
a very limited amount of time. But you pull out a gentleman who was
employed by someone for five months and talk about a client that he had ten
years ago.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: The last time that Paul Manafort was splashed across the front
page, the White House tried very hard to downplay his role in the Trump
campaign. But it`s worth remembering who Paul Manafort is and his
relationship to the President. He is a longtime Republican operative hired
by the Trump Campaign on March 28th, 2016, to lead the effort to lock down
enough convention delegates to secure the nomination. But from the very
beginning, Manafort had some baggage.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MANAFORT: I`ve known Trump for 30 years.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have some controversial clients in your past, some
current, some in the past. Has Mr. Trump asked to you stop working for
certain clients, stop working in Ukraine if it`s against America`s national
security?

MANAFORT: Well, the work I was doing in Ukraine was to help Ukraine get
into Europe, and we succeeded. But I`m not working for any clients right
now other than Mr. Trump.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: No, it would not become public knowledge till much later. The FBI
investigation into Mr. Manafort began during that spring in 2016. In May
of that year, Manafort was promoted to the role of Trump Campaign Manager
and Chief Strategist. On June 9th, Manafort in that capacity attended the
now infamous meeting with Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and a Russian
lawyer and some other folks, a Russian lawyer who had promised dirt on
Hillary Clinton from the Russian government. As the Republican National
Convention in early July, the Trump campaign which had extremely spare of
policy positions and took a very light touch during platform meetings
intervened specifically to change the GOP stance on arming Ukrainians that
were fighting Russian forces. In an interview, Manafort denied having any
part of that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MANAFORT: I had not - in fact, I didn`t even hear of it until after the
convention was over.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where did it come from then because everybody on the
platform committee had said it came from the Trump campaign? If not you,
who?

MANAFORT: No, it absolutely did not come from the Trump campaign. I don`t
know who everybody is but I guarantee you -

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Nobody from the Trump campaign wanted that change in
the platform?

MANAFORT: No one. Zero.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: In July, WikiLeaks began releasing thousands of DNC e-mails in the
roundup to the Democratic National Convention. And Clinton campaign
manager Robby Mook asserted that Russia was behind it and suggested ties to
the Trump campaign.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are there any ties between Mr. Trump, your or your
campaign and Putin and his regime?

MANAFORT: No, there are not. That`s absurd and there`s no basis to it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Keep in mind, that was after the meeting. The meeting that he had
with Russians who said they`re going to give him Russian government
information on Hillary Clinton. Now, on August 14th of 2016, a secret
ledger revealed $12.7 million in undisclosed cash payments designated for
Mr. Manafort from Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych, pro-Russian
political party. The Trump campaign fire Manafort on August 19th but he
reportedly remains in contact with the President. Joining me now, Natasha
Bertrand Political Correspondent for the Business Insider and MSNBC
Political Analyst Robert Costa, National Political Reporter at the
Washington Post. Robert, how long - how long is the relationship between
Manafort and Donald Trump?

ROBERT COSTA, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: The relationship goes back decades
because Manafort has long had property at Trump Tower in New York. They
have associated different Republican circles over the years. But it really
came through Roger Stone the long-time Trump confidant who connected
Manafort to Trump during the campaign.

HAYES: And just to be clear, I mean, he was central to that campaign. He
was not an ancillary figure when he was the Campaign Manager and Chair and
the Head of the delegate strategy.

COSTA: Correct. You just said it yourself, Chris. He was Campaign
Manager, he was Chairman, he was head of delegate strategy and as someone
reported day to day on the Trump campaign, he was for a time the man at the
top of the whole operation.

HAYES: Manafort`s role - of all of the players in this, the one whose
financial ties to Russia and Russian friendly operations in Ukraine seemed
the clearest. I mean, they`re pretty extensive, right?

NATASHA BERTRAND, BUSINESS INSIDER POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. So, Paul
Manafort worked for roughly a decade in Ukraine working for this pro-
Russian political party in Ukraine for you know, the former President
Viktor Yanukovych. He was eventually ousted in 2014. And also, as
previous reports have shown, Manafort is indebted to pro-Russian interests.
I mean, there was a New York Times report that said that he owed many - as
much as $17 million to pro-Russian interests. So this is someone with very
explicit ties to pro-Russian entities that of course would be of interest
to Robert Mueller as he investigates whether the Trump campaign colluded
with Russia.

And I`ve also point out that Manafort is not just - he wasn`t just central
to the campaign but as soon as he came on, that`s kind of when all the
Russia shenanigans started to really play out, right? I mean, so we had
you know, the DNC was hacked and the e-mails were released by WikiLeaks in
June. We had the change of the GOP platform which softens the stance on
Ukraine and I would you know, push back against what Manafort has said
which he said, the Trump campaign had nothing to do with it. Multiple
people who were in the room at the time told me that he played a very
direct rule over the Trump campaign did anyway which he was managing at the
time. So these are all connections that Mueller is going to be looking at
and that are very significant.

HAYES: And Robert, there`s also - I mean, Manafort had to - the reason
Manafort left the campaign at all was stories related to this. That the
story about the secret payments from the Ukrainian political party if I`m
not mistaken, right. That was the reason that he left.

COSTA: It was one of the things that pushed him over the edge. The
family, the Trump family, I remember at the time was telling me and other
reporters that they were just becoming concerned about all the mounting new
stories. And then candidate Trump was also slipping in the polls. But you
had a scenario that played out in a strange way. He was brought on to
someone to steady the whole campaign, a campaign that was falling apart.
Corey Lewandowski had tensions with then candidate Trump. But then the
recognition started to sink in that this was a foreign lobbyist, a long
time foreign lobbyist now running the campaign and the consequences weren`t
really thought out by the people around Donald Trump at the time and it
wasn`t until August that they finally had a reckoning.

HAYES: Now, there`s another aspect to Manafort which is these stories
about transaction that he has made, real estate transactions in particular.
That - for people who study money laundering, at least look a little
strange. Here`s one, in 2006, Manafort`s purchase of a Trump Tower
apartment for all cash coincided with his friend`s signing of a $10 million
contract with a pro-Putin Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.

BERTRAND: Right. And this is clearly what the FBI was looking for and
that`s great. Violations of the bank secrecy act which has to do with
restrictions on money laundering and detecting money laundering in the U.S.
Paul Manafort is known for buying real estate with shell companies. And
many of those shell companies have been connected back to Russian
oligarchs. So a big part of this is going to be trying to figure out where
his funds come from and whether or not he was rerouting them into Russian -
into New York real estate in properties across the United States for the
purpose of hiding the sources of the cash.

HAYES: Robert, we`ve seen what the President that even when people are
fired or removed from their official position with him, or quit, he remains
in contact. It`s true Roger Stone who was briefed was part of the
campaign, it`s true to Corey Lewandowski. Was that true of Paul Manafort?
I saw a reporting indicating that they were still in touch even after he
left the campaign.

COSTA: There was a time where the bridge was burned, so to speak and they
were not in contact but you`re right. There were sporadic reports that
Manafort during the Fall was in occasional touch with then candidate Trump,
was in touch with people within the campaign, that they publicly kept their
distance from him and there was some talk even in the transition, could
Paul Manafort have a role of some sort but because of all these
controversies and allegations, that never really came to be.

HAYES: As someone who has really followed this extremely closely and I`ve
been reading your reporting on it, were you surprised by the news today?

BERTRAND: No, absolutely not. I mean, I think that Paul Manafort along
with Michael Flynn have both been kind of at the center of Mueller`s
investigation. Not only because they are you know, arguably the most
vulnerable players in all of this, just given all their financial ties and
their past contact with Russians, but also because they have, you know,
they`ve had contact with Russians in the past. I mean, Paul Manafort was
at that meeting last June at Trump Tower with Jared Kushner and Donald
Trump Jr. And that was - you know, he was the most high ranking figure in
the campaign at the time to attend that meeting. So I think that you know,
all of these players they`re going to be - Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn
are going to be you know, extremely central to all this and the FBI is
probably going to try to get them to talk by trying to leverage the
possibility of criminal chargers being brought against them.

COST: And real quick Chris, it`s so important in our reporting. We`re
watching Mueller, the Special Counsel, hire prosecutors who pursued
financial crimes, raid Manafort`s home for financial documents. This is
not just about possible obstruction of justice or meetings with Don Junior,
it`s about possible financial crimes.

HAYES: Natasha Bertrand and Robert Costa, thank you both.

BERTRAND: Thank you.

HAYES: As the world grapples with how to handle the President`s rhetoric,
can the remarks from international leaders paint a picture of an ill-
informed erratic Obama obsessed Commander in Chief, those comments after
the quick break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: As the world tries to figure out what to make of the President`s
latest threats towards North Korea, we`re gaining a new sense of how
foreign governments including close allies have come to regard the U.S.
Commander in Chief. BuzzFeed talked to six senior European officials who
have all had direct dealings with the President and his administration.
They paint a pretty grim picture of the President`s reputation abroad.
Some diplomats have reportedly taken to mocking the President for what they
perceive to be sort of intellectual shortcomings. One source revealing
that a small group of diplomats played a version of word bingo whenever the
President speaks because they consider his vocabulary to be so limited.
Everything is great, very, very great. Amazing.

Others officials question the President`s comprehension of world affairs.
He has no historical view according to one source. He`s only dealing with
his issues now and seems to think the world started when he took office.
The President`s main concern according to BuzzFeed sources seems to be
unraveling the legacy of his predecessor. It`s his only real position. He
will ask if “did Obama approve this?” And if the answer was affirmative,
he will say we don`t. He won`t even want to listen to the arguments or
have a debate. He is obsessed with Obama. And even before the latest
tensions with North Korea, one diplomat expressed grave concerns about the
President`s behavior. “Trump could send a tweet in the middle of the night
pissing off Kim John-un and the next morning we wake up to a world on the
brink of war. The real danger is a President reacting off the cuff right
after this break.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: North Korea from best not make any more threats to the United
States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Lots of reporting today has confirmed the impression that many
people had watching those comments yesterday, that the president wasn`t
delivering a carefully vetted statement crafted by national security aides,
he was improvising. The escalator y rhetoric surprised some of his closest
advisers, according to the New York Times, including John Kelly, the new
chief of staff, who was recruited to improve White House discipline.

In a statement today, the White House press secretary insisted Kelly had
been in the loop along with the National Security Council.

General Kelly and others on the NSC team were well aware of the tone of the
statement of the president prior to delivery. The words were his own. The
tone and strength of the message were discussed beforehand.

While some aides are minimizing the president`s comments, warning against
reading too much into the combative talk, as Politico reports, others
suggest those comments reveal the president`s real thinking about the
nuclear impasse.

According to the Daily Beast, it was a sentiment that Trump has shared
privately with top White House staffers, some of whom report that he has
used language that reflected the fire and fury bluster
in sporadic fits of venting about a North Korean regime that his
administration has sought unsuccessfully so far, to rein in through
diplomatic channels.

The president was back at it first thing this morning, sounding off about
nuclear weapons on Twitter: “my first order as president was to renovate
and modernize our nuclear arsenal. It is now far stronger and more
powerful than ever before…” That was the first tweet followed by an
ellipses. You really wanted to see what he was going to tweet next.
“Hopefully we will never have to use this power, but there will never be a
time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world.”

In fact, that first tweet is not accurate. There is a plan underway to
overhaul the U.S. nuclear arsenal. It is expected, however, to take
another three decades to complete and it was put in place by President
Obama.

Hours after the president`s tweets, a guest at his New Jersey golf club
posted a photo on Instagram of the two of them out on the golf course,
noting they played a full 18 holes. The guest has declined to make his
photo available to the press.

I am joined now by Ambassador Wendy Sherman, a former top official at the
State Department under President Obama.

How surprised are you to hear the president was improvising?

AMB. WENDY SHERMAN, SENIOR STATE DEPT. OFFICIAL, OBAMA ADMINISTRATION: I`m
not surprised, sadly. I think we have a serious problem around the world
with the president`s credibility. We know from the Pew Global Attitudes
Project that the measure and
respect for the president of the United States has plummeted around the
world. The only two countries where there`s been an increase in regard are
Russia and Israel.

This is not a good place for the United States of America. And I think it
leads to concern about
what the president`s actions might be to follow those words.

Words are concerning, actions are even more concerning.

HAYES: What do you mean by that? I mean, are you concerned the president
will order a nuclear strike of North Korea?

SHERMAN: Well, I don`t think that is going to happen at this moment, I am
happy to say for the American public.

HAYES: Good. Keep going.

SHERMAN: …that might be watching this evening.

But let`s take a look at what the president said and what Secretary Mattis
said. Secretary Mattis` comments were very tough, but they were all
focused on what Kim Jong-un`s actions are, and that his actions will
control what happens to the future of him, his regime and his people.

HAYES: Let me stop you there, because I want to actually read the
statement, so folks know what you`re talking about. This is Mattis saying
the saying the DPRK must choose to stop isolating
itself and stand down in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. DPRK should cease
any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and
the destruction of its people.

SHERMAN: So, you can see in that, I`m sure, that Secretary Mattis sat with
his aides and very
carefully went over each of those words. It wasn`t a statement of threat,
though it was quite tough, maybe tougher than some people would wish for.
It was all about what Kim Jong-Un was doing and what he could do to have a
different future for his people.

I`m very concerned that there is not a cohesive, coherent policy in this
administration, and you spoke earlier about Kelly having to bring
discipline to the White House. I think he`s brought some discipline to the
process, the real problem is he doesn`t seem to bring any discipline to the
President of the United States.

HAYES: I want to play for you also the Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
who has become quite a controversial figure I should note, particularly in
circles of foreign service that I`ve talked to, and folks around the state
department, this is what he had to say on North Korea. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REX TILLERSON, SECRETARY OF STATE: I think Americans should sleep well at
night. I have no concerns about this particular rhetoric over the last few
days. I think the president as
Commander in Chief, I think he felt it necessary to issue a very strong
statement directly to North Korea.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: What do you make of that?

SHERMAN: Well, I think Secretary Tillerson is in a very tough place. He`s
in part put himself there. Quite frankly, both and he and Nikki Haley
really did achieve something significant in the 15 to nothing U.N. security
council vote the other day for a resolution to put some very tough
sanctions in
place against North Korea. It is amazing that the President of the United
States didn`t pick up on that victory, so to speak, and move forward in the
diplomacy.

Instead, he blew up the diploma and what Secretary Tillerson was trying to
do, what Nikki Haley was trying to do. And it undermined the Secretary of
State, who already, as you point out, is under a lot of controversy because
the state department is completely demoralized. The most significant
positions there have not been filled. Secretary Tillerson said he wants to
wait until he achieves some reorganization of an institution he knows very
little about.

And meanwhile, we don`t have an ambassador in Seoul, South Korea. We don`t
have an assistant
secretary for east Asia pacific. We don`t have virtually all of our
assistant secretaries or ambassadors
around the world. If we`re going to be focused on diplomacy, you`ve got to
have the team ready to go. There`s no team.

HAYES: Ambassador Wendy Sherman, thanks very much.

SHERMAN: Thank you.

HAYES: Coming up, the return of Just Say No as national drug policy. The
brewing backlash as the president ignores his own commission`s
recommendations to stem the ongoing opioid crisis, and was Donald Trump
watching our show last night? Thing one, thing two, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Thing One, a strange endorsement. President Trump chose to endorse
a candidate in next week`s primary election in Alabama for the Senate seat
vacated by his Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

It`s a race between three Republicans, at least two of which believe Trump
was sent to Washington by God.

In a 9:16 p.m. tweet last night, he authored Luther Strange, current
senator, “my complete and total endorsement.” it is a significant blow to
the other two Trump friendly Republicans in the race.

And the endorsement came despite Alabama Republicans having been told in
recent weeks, the White House would remain on the sidelines. One senior GOP
official saying my jaw did drop.

So why, all of a sudden, did President Trump decide to make a late night
surprise endorsement
on Twitter? We have a theory based on what was on TV just minutes before
that tweet and that`s Thing Two in 60 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: The President`s cable news consumption has been well documented and
so have his Twitter reactions to cable news segments. For instance on
Monday morning, Senator Richard Blumenthal talked about the Mueller
investigation and eight minutes after that segment ended, the
president began a tweet storm attack on Blumenthal.

Last night this was what was on cable news late at 8:00 p.m. Eastern time
hour: North Korea coverage, someone phoning climate change film maker Josh
Fox, and a segment on this show about the Alabama senate primary.

And just 16 minutes after this show`s segment, the president tweeted out of
nowhere his surprise endorsement in that primary for the current senate
Senator Luther Strange.

Now, we don`t fool ourselves to think the president is a regular viewer of
All In. Perhaps he was tired of watching, “Transgender Athletes: Unfair
Competition”, and switched the channel, but this program was the only cable
channel that covered the Alabama election at all yesterday, including the
minutes leading up to the president`s tweet so it`s possible he saw this
moment of discussion of the
other two candidates Mo Brooks and Roy Moore.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BETSY WOODRUFF, THE DAILY BEAST: Roy Moore and Mo Brooks have a
fascinating commonality, which is both are conservative Christians and both
of them during the presidential campaign were really uncomfortable with
being closely associated with Donald Trump. Mo Brooks actually called Trump
a serial adulterer.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Or maybe it`s just a coincidence.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And can guarantee you, we
will
not only stop the drugs from pouring in but we will help all of those
people so seriously addicted. We`ll get them assistance. We`ll make sure
that they have the top treatment and get better. We got to get them better.
We got a lot of people that are strung out on bad stuff.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: During the presidential campaign, Donald Trump, like pretty much
every candidate, Republican or Democrat, acknowledged the magnitude of the
opioid abuse crisis all across the country.

And after he became president, Donald Trump created a commission on the
subject appointing New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, an outspoken
advocate of treatment to lead it.

But we`ve since learned a bit more of what the president really thinks
about the crisis. Just last week for example, the Washington Post published
those transcripts of a call with the leader of Mexico in which the
president said, quote, “I won New Hampshire because New Hampshire is a drug
infested
den.” By the way, Hillary Clinton won New Hampshire.

And just yesterday he attended what was billed as a major briefing on the
opioid crisis, except the head of the White House opioid commission wasn`t
there. Chris Christie is out of the country having left the country for his
own ten-day vacation in Italy.

Also absent, anyone at all from the Drug Enforcement Administration, from
Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg on down. Someone who did manage to
attend however was First
Lady Melania Trump who has no formal role in fighting drug addiction.

Now, Donald Trump didn`t adopt his own commissions recommendation to
declare a national emergency for opioids, instead he offered a very
different plan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: The best way to prevent drug addiction and overdose is to prevent
people from abusing drugs in the first place. If they don`t start, they
won`t have a problem. If they do start, it is awfully tough to get off. So
we can keep them from going on and may be by talking to youth, telling
them, no good, really bad for you, in every way. But, if they don`t start,
it will never be a problem.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: The reaction to that from West Virginia, a state where someone died
from an overdose every ten hours last year, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: No one in Washington was talking about opioids until candidates had
to go start doing
town halls. What happened in the campaign is they started showing up in New
Hampshire, and every town hall, all anyone wanted to talk about was
opioids.

How many people have lost someone in this room? Whoa.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: We were in West Virginia earlier this year, everyone we spoke to
had been affected by the opioid crisis. Instead of the resources for
treatment and rehabilitation, they promised from the trail, President
Donald Trump has offered basically not much.

Joining me now, Bob Kincaid, the co-founder Appalachian Communities Health
Emergency Campaign, which is based in West Virginia, and host of Head-On
with Bob Kincaid.

I guess, first a reaction to the president`s opioid briefing yesterday.

BOB KINCAID, APPALACHIAN COMMUNITIES HEALTH EMERGENCY CAMPAIGN: Well,
considering he lifted his fury line from Harry Truman, now he`s lifted
“Just Say No” from Nancy
Reagan, if he shows up in a red dress now, I guess we`ll know he`s gone
full Nancy.

HAYES: There was a certain kind of throwback quality to the idea of just
don`t start. But my sense, from at least the data, I think it`s probably
clear in West Virginia, that starting is often born of
prescriptions, right?

KINCAID: Well, that`s exactly the point, Chris. Nobody gets up in the
morning in West Virginia or anywhere else in this country and says, gosh, I
think I`ll go get some heroin today. My life is going entirely too well.

This is a process of people getting addicted to prescription painkillers,
that are made by pharmaceutical firms inside the United States, and
frankly, some big stupid wall with holes in it
and solar panels is not going to stop the profiteering that lies behind the
influx of these pills.

There are legitimate uses for these chemicals, but you know, once they got
hold of you, then
after you can`t get them anymore, the problem arises and sends you out onto
the streets where it`s not just heroin, it`s Fentanyl cutting into the
heroin. What`s the other one now? An elephant tranquilizer that
even first responders, the – I`ve been told the mere touch of it can be
debilitating?

HAYES: Wow.

KINCAID: And so this – it`s a universe that cannot be solved, ever, as we
learned with Nancy
Reagan in “Just Say No”. It cannot be solved by slogans, and by
grandstanding.

Addiction treatment is hard work, and it is expensive work. And it requires
compassion, and
dedication, and understanding. And I don`t think any of those things are
present in this president, especially in light of the fact that he
completely blew off his own blue ribbon commission.

HAYES: I want to give people the sense of the scope of the problem in West
Virginia. Here are overdoses, the rate. So this is per 100,000 deaths I
imagine that is. You can see that shooting up, 41.5, shockingly high
number, the national rate at 16.3.

This piece from the Washington Post, that there have been so many overdose
deaths they have
overwhelmed the state program for burial assistance for needy families for
at least the fifth year in a row causing the program to be nearly out of
money four months before the end of the fiscal year, according to the
state`s Department of Health and Human Resources.

Does it feel like a top of line front and center crisis there, both in
people`s lives, but also as a political question?

KINCAID: Chris, it is so in the front of people`s minds in West Virginia,
that almost nothing
else can get through. Because everybody knows somebody who has been through
this. I know someone who`s died of an overdose. I know people who deal with
addiction.

And you know what? This is the thing. None of them are bad people.

HAYES: Yeah.

KINCAID: And so just saying that it`s a bad drug, or acting like people
deserved to be demonized, you know, one of the things that might have been
nice in terms of dealing with this, and you asked about the political end
of it, how about not talking about cutting out all the funds that go for
treatment and healing and ending these addictions.

I`m talking about Medicaid where the treatment moneys can run as high as
40% of our Medicaid.

HAYES: Let me ask you this. I think the president performed better in West
Virginia, I think
than in any other states. He talked about this a lot on the campaign trail.
Hillary Clinton did as well,m other folks did, but this was a theme of his.

I guess the question to you is, do you think it will matter, I mean, is
there an expectation that there will be action taken by this president and
the federal government and will it matter if there isn`t?

KINCAID: It depends on who you`re talking to. If you`re talking to a
dedicated Trump supporter, then he`s the reason that the sun rises in the
morning and sets at night. They point to an imaginary return of the coal
industry. And so, sure, he`ll get something done about this, because he`s
Trump.

But if you`re talking about the real world, the only thing that`s going to
do anything about this, by any political party, or any politician, is the
rolled up sleeves gritty work of dealing with the causes of addiction, and
the treatment of it.

And I come back to it again and again and again, because treatment is
everything. There was a brutal day of overdoses oh, a year or so ago in
Huntington, West Virginia. I just read a newspaper story a week or so ago,
maybe one out of, you know, more than 20, maybe more than 30 OD`s in that
one day were referred to treatment, because you can`t get people to
treatment.

HAYES: There`s a tremendous shortage in West Virginia, around this country
of good treatment facilities and is a massive and pressing part of this
crisis right now.

Bob Kincaid, thanks for joining me.

KINCAID: Thank you, Chris.

HAYES: That is All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow show starts right
now.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
BE UPDATED.
END

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