Sen. Warren interview. TRANSCRIPT: 02/25/2019, All In w. Chris Hayes.
Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: February 25, 2019
Guest: Hassan Zuvareei, Christina Greer, Betsy Woodruff, Marcy Wheeler
STEVE KORNACKI, NBC NEWS NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: We will see if
Warren can reverse that or if she will end up ruining the day that Bernie
Sanders decided to run again. That`s HARDBALL for now. “ALL IN” with
Chris Hayes starts right now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I just start kissing them.
It`s like a magnet.
HAYES: Shades of the Access Hollywood tape in a brand-new accusation
against the president.
TRUMP: And when your star they let you do it. You can do anything.
HAYES: Tonight, the first new accusation against Donald Trump as president
and the attorney for the newest accuser joins me live. Then, Elizabeth
Warren changes the game.
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), MASSACHUSETTS: Corruption is a cancer on our
HAYES: Tonight, my exclusive interview with Elizabeth Warren on her
campaign play to swear off big-money fundraising. Plus, why what`s left
out of the latest Manafort filing could mean trouble in Trump world.
PAUL MANAFORT, FORMER CHAIRMAN, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: That`s obviously what our
HAYES: And as the White House plays both sides again.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do yourself believe in climate ring I believe there
are signs that there – both, on both sides that are accurate.
HAYES: The growing urgency for climate action on the left.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fire, this is an emergency in this country.
HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Good evening from New York I`m Chris Hayes. Tonight, a staffer on
the Trump 2016 presidential campaign has come forward to become the 16th
woman to accuse Donald Trump of unwanted sexual contact. Alva Johnson was
a Trump campaign staffer in Florida. That`s her on the day of the alleged
She claims in a new lawsuit that then-candidate Trump quote forcibly kissed
her as he exited an R.V. in August of 2016. Johnson says she turned away
from Trump as he tried to kiss her on the lips that he ultimately kissed
her on the side of her mouth. This is the first sexual misconduct
accusation against the president since he became the president. It`s the
first alleging misconduct while he was a candidate. It is also the first
accusation be made by a woman who worked on Trump`s campaign.
Johnson who in addition to suing Trump is also suing the Trump campaign
alleging she was underpaid because of her race and gender, says the
incident took place about six weeks before the release of the Access
Hollywood tape in which Trump in the Year 2005 can be heard boasting that
he can do the very thing he`s been accused of doing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: You know, I`m automatically attracted to beautiful. I just started
kissing them. It`s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don`t even wait. And
when you`re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.
BILLY BUSH, RADIO HOST: Whatever you want.
TRUMP: I can do any of that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Johnson did not speak out at the time that tape became public but
told The Washington Post she was stunned when the tape came out. “I felt
sick to my stomach. That was what he did to me.” Two women who say they
were present for the alleged kiss, Melania Trump chief of staff Stephanie
Grisham and former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi told NBC News that
they did not see it take place. Bondi flat-out called the allegation
In addition, the director of trumps Florida campaign Karen Giorno told the
Post the allegation was ridiculous saying that absolutely did not happen.
In a statement, Sarah Sanders also rejected the allegation “this accusation
is absurd on its face. This never happened and is directly contradicted by
multiple highly credible eyewitness accounts.”
Johnson`s boyfriend, mother, and stepfather confirmed to the Post that
Johnson told them about the alleged kiss on the day it took place, and a
Florida Attorney told posted Johnson had approached him about the alleged
incident just two months later.
Joining me now is Hassan Zuvareei. He`s the attorney for Alva Johnson.
Good to have you here. Good evening, Chris. Why filed this lawsuit now?
HASSAN ZUVAREEI, LAWYER OF ALVA JOHNSON: Well, so Ms. Johnson actually
tried to come forward and was prepared to come forward shortly after the
Access Hollywood tape came out. It was at that moment that she was able to
contextualize what happened to her. I think at first she was very
confused. She knew it was inappropriate but she didn`t really know what it
meant until Mr. Trump told her exactly what it meant.
He told her and he told the rest of the country that this was a pattern,
this was his modus operandi, this was part of his way of sexually
assaulting women. And so once she saw that, she left the campaign, she
never came back. She hired an attorney. She moved out of campaign housing
and she began the steps to bring a lawsuit.
HAYES: This is two months after the incident when the tape comes out.
You`re saying that is the precipitating incident for her to break with the
ZUVAREEI: That`s right. The Access Hollywood tape.
HAYES: I will say that she had very fond things to say. I`m not saying
this means that she`s not telling the truth here but I do want to put on
the record that she did say fun things about the president back in a May
2017 radio interview. Take a listen to what she had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALVA JOHNSON, FORMER STAFFER, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: He is more incredible in
person than I think than you would even think as you see him on T.V. He`s
just the nicest guy. He really loves this country. He loves his family.
He treats everyone as if they`re a part of his family.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Is that reflect the way she feels about the president?
ZUVAREEI: Absolutely not, Chris. Keep in mind – so after she found the
attorney or thought she had found an attorney, he declined to move forward
with the case for business reasons even though he believed in the merits of
her claim. And at that point shortly afterwards, candidate Trump became
President Trump. And at that point she was terrified and she was very
scared of coming forward, and she decided not to come forward.
And as a victim, as many victims are terrified she was as well. And she
decided to go along to get along, to shut up, to not talk about it, and to
move forward with her life which at that point included her life as a
HAYES: The allegations are that this was done in a public – in public.
Essentially, her boss, the boss of the campaign just to forcefully kiss her
in the midst of what is a day of public campaigning.
ZUVAREEI: Yes – look, again, that`s his M.O. He did it to Cathy Heller
at Mar-a-Lago in 1997. He did it to a Miss USA candidate on camera, so yes
that`s exactly what he did and it`s consistent with his behavior in the
HAYES: She – did she sign an NDA as the condition of her employment in
ZUVAREEI: She signed an NDA purportedly as a condition of her employment
and we intend to fight that NDA. We believe it`s unconscionable and
ZUVAREEI: Well, it`s so over brought (AUDIO GAP) not just the President,
his entire family, his grandchildren. They`re –
ZUVAREEI: Yes. It stifles all kinds of speech. I mean, it`s so broad.
I`ll provide a copy for you if you`d like to see it. And you can see how
he`s tried to abuse it. I mean, he`s tried to shut down people who are
working in the White House. He`s tried to shut down people who have made
other complaints about him. And in the line of work that I`m involved in
where I fight corporations every day, they try to shut people down and shut
people up, that`s what we do. We fight these sorts of abusive agreements.
HAYES: There`s another aspect to the lawsuit aside from this allegation of
unwanted sexual contact by the president which has to do with the way that
she was paid on the campaign. Tell me what is that part of the lawsuit.
ZUVAREEI: That`s right. So there are two aspects to that. She was paid
less than comparable men who were working on the campaign and she was paid
less than comparable white people who were working on the campaign. With
respect to her gender claims, she`s actually bringing that claim on behalf
of all women who worked on the Trump campaign.
And just as an example there was a kid straight out of high school, white
kid straight out of high school, a teenager who was brought on the campaign
as an intern, and after he graduated from high school was making more than
HAYES: So this is a federal race and sex discrimination lawsuit claim in
ZUVAREEI: That`s right.
HAYES: What is her thinking about her role in that campaign now? What
does she feel about being some small part of getting this man elected
president and what does she think about it now?
ZUVAREEI: This has been the most difficult thing for her. Feeling like
she helped to legitimize this man and help him become the President of the
United States. After what happened in Charlottesville, when she saw I`m
talking about there being fine people on both sides, after what happened at
the Mexican border, where he saw – where she saw him separating children
from their – from their parents, and then when she saw him mocking the
Those things I think have made a big impact on her and she feels very
responsible. And I think part of coming forward now is to try and redeem
herself for what she feels guilty about which is her role in having Donald
Trump elected president.
HAYES: All right, Hassan Zuvareei who is the lawyer for Alva Johnson who
has filed suit in federal court over what she says is unwanted sexual
contact by the President of the United States while she worked on his
campaign. Thank you so much for making some time tonight.
ZUVAREEI: Thank you, Chris.
HAYES: The latest allegation against Donald Trump is a reminder of the
enormous body of sexual misconduct allegations that exist against the man
who is now the President of the United States.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JESSICA DRAKE, TRUMP ACCUSER: When we entered the room he grabbed each of
us tightly in a hug and kissed each one of us without asking permission.
MINDY MCGILLIVRAY, TRUMP ACCUSER: I feel the little you know, this little
grab. It`s like you know, you`re feeling like a little cheek, like a
little cheek lift almost, and I stand up really tall. I`m shocked in a
moment. And I look – and I turn around and I look at him and he doesn`t
look at me. He doesn`t want to make eye contact with me.
JESSICA LEEDS, TRUMP ACCUSER: Somehow another, the armrest in in the seat
disappeared and it was a real shock when all of a sudden his hands were all
KRISTIN ANDERSON, TRUMP ACCUSER: The person on my right who unbeknownst to
me at that time was Donald Trump put their hand up my skirt. He did touch
my vagina through my underwear, absolutely.
JILL HARTH, TRUMP ACCUSER: He pushed me up against the wall and had his
hands all over me and tried to get up my dress again and I had to
physically say what are you doing? Stop it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Donald Trump has dismissed all the women who accused him, everyone
as liars and suggested some were not attractive enough for him to assault.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: One came out recently where I was sitting alone and at some club.
I was sitting alone by myself like this. And then I went – to somebody.
Every woman lied when they came forward to hurt my campaign. A total
fabrication. All of these Liars will be sued after the election is over.
When you looked at that horrible woman last night, you said, I don`t think
so. I don`t think so. Whoever she is, wherever she comes from, the
stories are total fiction. I was sitting with him on an airplane and he
went after me on the plane. Yes, I`m going to go after her. Believe me,
she would not be my first choice, that I can tell you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now Christina Greer, Associate Professor of Political
Science at Fordham University and Betsy Woodruff, Politics Reporter for The
Daily Beast. Christina, you know, it occurred to me as I read this story
today that A, in another context, it would be enormous world stopping news
if a campaign staffer had said that getting off a bus, Barack Obama had
forced himself a kiss on her.
In the middle of the two years of the administration, I think we all agree
that would be a (INAUDIBLE). It is not that kind of story partly because I
think there – it is priced in an assumptions about how the president
CHRISTINA GREER, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF POLITICAL SCIENCE, FORDHAM
UNIVERSITY: Well, I mean, we`ve been dealing with these assaults by Donald
Trump just as citizens –
HAYES: Alleged, I must say.
GREER: No, when I say assaults, I mean, just the constant barrage. Yes,
double entendre. The constant barrage of him just – and his brutish
behavior. So yes, there are 16 women who have allegedly accused – you
know, accused Trump of alleged assault but there`s so much more. Every day
it`s a fire. I mean, you have to put this show together. Every single day
there`s something new and so it`s this onslaught, where e can`t really
focus on sort of one issue because each day something else happens.
And so what really bothers me though is that this is clearly a pattern.
For those of us who live in New York, we`ve known about this pattern for
decades actually, and he seems to be Teflon Don, right? And we`ve seen
what happened to Dr. Blasi Ford where she is not back at work. She is
using her private funds and savings to hire her own security. We know that
the supporters of Donald Trump are highly aggressive and some of them
unstable as far as you know, going after these women.
So for some of them, it`s a safety issue. And he encourages that. I mean,
we`ve seen this time and time again with the way he talks about his
HAYES: You know, Betsy, it struck me the singular role that NDA`s play and
Trump world which has followed him into the White House. Clifford Sims who
just wrote the book now engaged in a legal dispute with the White House
over getting out of those NDA`s which the president in unprecedented
fashion has used to lock up almost everyone he comes into contact with.
BETSY WOODRUFF, POLITICS REPORTER, THE DAILY BEAST: That`s right. This
story is sort of the extension of two lifelong trends for Trump. The first
of course being allegations of sexual misconduct and assault, and the
second being efforts to sort of weaponize the American legal system to
force people not to be open about their encounters with him and about their
work with him.
One thing the Daily Beast reported a couple days ago is the fact that the
Trump administration has actually forced interns to sign NDA`s and it
hasn`t let these interns according to our reporting keep the copies of the
NDA`s that they signed. In other words, if you`re a young – perhaps a
college student trying to get started in the White House trying to get your
foot in the door in politics and you want to work in this White House the
prospect of financial ruin will be hanging over your head because of these
Now, to be crystal clear, it is very much unclear whether or not these NDAs
are illegal and whether they can actually be enforced in court. There`s a
very interesting argument that First Amendment rights for these federal
employees can`t be enforced because the NDA rather than the president being
the person they`re making the commitment to, they`d be making the
commitment to the United States as a country.
Anyway, the legal side of this is really interesting. And if an intern
decides to try to sue them of that NDA, it will – it will be fascinating
to watch. But this is just Trump`s M.O. This is how he works.
HAYES: Yes. And you heard the attorney from Miss Johnson saying they
think it`s totally null and void. But there`s another part of this. You
talked about Teflon Don and I think you know, we`ve seen – you know, this
amazing thing about the equilibrium of the approval rating right? Like no
new facts change things that much in one direction or another. It`s not
like people can be converted to thinking –
GREER: Well, Chris, if you were with him when he came down a gold
escalator and says Mexicans are rapist, like you`re not moving down.
HAYES: But there`s also to me, there`s a lesson almost for the rest of our
politics about the value of shamelessness which is essentially – I mean
Ralph Northam right now is still the governor of Virginia, right? And
there was this moment where when the blackface came out and people thought
well, obviously he got to go. And one of the things that I think Trump has
shown for all kinds of political and public figures is if you don`t bow to
the shame and you just plunge ahead, maybe you can just weather anything.
GREER: The most dangerous man in the world has no shame. And that means
he will not be moved by anything, right? Not by embarrassment, not by
embarrassment to his family, not by embarrassment to his wife because he
has no shame. And for those of us who are from New York, we know – the
interesting thing that Betsey talks about this NDAs is that we also know
that Trump has weaponized the legal system in a sense that he says he`s
going to sue people.
But he also always reneged on deals that he makes with other people and his
go-to line is will sue me, right? Yes, I know we`ve made an agreement
where I`m supposed to pay $50,000, I`ll only pay you $25,000. But if you
want you`re other $25,000 sue me. Spend $25,000 to get your $25,000.
HAYES: That`s right. And there is, Betsy, there is no one probably in
American public life as litigious who has been as in many lawsuits on both
ends as Donald Trump which is part of another part of his lifelong M.O.
WOODRUFF: Right. There`s no doubt. And an interesting you know, factor
in the American legal system is that this type of civil litigation, your
ability to be successful in it is often contingent on how much money you
have. Hiring lawyers to represent you for these civil suits, some of which
can drag on for years before resolution, just costs a ton of money. And
this is a tool that Trump doesn`t – Trump is not breaking new ground here
in the way that he uses the legal system, although he certainly is a quite
innovative and enthusiastic about it.
But the reality is that many Americans have trouble when they`re – when
they have a choice between do we stay quiet or do I go to try to fight for
the right to say what I believe is true and that people need to know. And
that`s part of the reason that Trump has been able to use this tool so well
is that he`s had the financial resources to essentially use law fair to go
after his credits.
HAYES: Yes, I`m just sort of – I`m sort of processing the idea of intern
– White House interns locked up behind NDA which is – it just early
insane idea. Christina Greer and Betsy Woodruff, thank you both.
Senator Elizabeth Warren will be here live to discuss her announcement
today that she is swearing off big-money fundraisers. That`s ahead. And
my next guest says Robert Mueller`s latest Manafort filing may be an
indication of bigger things to come. Marcy Wheeler will explain why right
HAYES: After delay Friday night, prosecutors working for Robert Mueller
finally filed a sentencing memo in one of two cases against the president`s
campaign manager Paul Manafort. This was the one in Washington D.C.
That`s where a judge just ruled that Manafort violated his plea deal by
lying to investigators. And the sentencing memo which is unsealed on
Saturday is more notable for what it leaves out than what it includes.
While previous filings by Mueller`s office have contained what appeared
pretty intentional hints about the probe`s trajectory, revealing for
example that Roger Stone`s outreach to WikiLeaks in 2016 “was directed by
high ranking individuals in the campaign. The Manafort sentencing memo
that we got on Saturday covers no new ground.
Instead of shedding light on the central mystery of Manafort`s contacts
with his Russian-Ukrainian henchmen Konstantin Kilimnik during the campaign
which according prosecutors quote go very much the heart of the Mueller
investigation, the memo sticks with information already in the public
record. It skates over Manafort`s lies to investigators mainly dealing
with his illegal lobbying work for Ukraine. Though we don`t know what`s
hiding under roughly a full page of redactions.
And then conflicting reports on the status of the investigation, it`s hard
to know how to interpret this latest public move by the special counsel.
No one has been following this more closely than journalist Marcy Wheeler
who writes about the Mueller probe on her blog emptywheel.net going over
every document with a fine-tooth comb and who`s got a theory for why this
latest memo holds its cards so close to the vest, namely that it shows
Mueller still has another hand left to play.
Marcy, I read what you`ve been writing about this. What is your sort of
main takeaway from the document that we got on Saturday?
MARCY WHEELER, JOURNALIST: Well, Mueller has made accusations of lying
against five of Trumps associates George Papadopoulos, Mike Flynn, the
draft room Corsi plea, Roger Stone, and Michael Cohen. And every single
one of them as you know, it describes other roles on the campaign. It
describes dates. It quotes directly from e-mails. And both in this in
sentencing hero – memo that we got on month on Saturday but also in all of
the breach negotiation, the breached discussions going back to months
before that, we got none of that.
And so at the time when there`s a big question about whether or not Mueller
is going to be able to report out what he discovered, that`s the first time
he`s withholding those details. So I don`t really know what to make of it,
but he had an opportunity on Saturday to show his hand and he didn`t show
his hand. So for the first time, he`s did not disclosing those details.
HAYES: Right, because he`s made – I mean, what you – what you sort of
picked up on is there`s a sort of affirmative decision about how many
details to include and he seems to be making affirmative decisions to
withhold things in this document and a few of the others that he has not
made in the past.
WHEELER: Right and at the core of the breach discussion was this August
2nd, 2016 meeting between Manafort and Konstantin Kilimnik where Manafort
dealt Kilimnik 75 pages of polling data and at the same time discussed a
peace deal for Ukraine which is – which was obviously also a sanctions
And so we don`t get any of those details. Those details came from Paul
Manafort and to some degree the judge. They don`t come from right Mueller
in this case but that – but that`s the story. That`s like the gut of the
question of whether or not Trump and his campaign were conspiring with the
HAYES: You know, and you just mentioned 75 pages someone casually, but I
had not seen that number anywhere in the reporting and you sort of go
through the document and you find that basically in a footnote by one of
Manafort`s own lawyers filings, they say how long the polling data is and
it`s 75 pages in at least the attachment that they gave to the court, is
WHEELER: Yes. So it`s included as a declaration to what the government
presented back in January and Manafort`s lawyers in their very last memo
which is probably why no one noticed this, they`re like here`s the e-mail
that Manafort sent to Rick Gates saying print this out.
HAYES: Print this out. Right.
WHEELER: And print this out so we know that the exhibit. And then it says
here`s the pages of the data that we`re all discussing. It`s actually 76
pages. I`ve been corrected on that, but it`s at least 75 pages long. So
it`s a chunk of polling data. It wasn`t just you know top lines or
something like that.
HAYES: Which does seem material to this right? Because as you said, this
sort of question that had been hinted at by Mueller`s lawyers in the breach
conversation about going to the heart of, what are they doing in this cigar
bar on this night meeting with this guy during the campaign printing out
polling data and giving to him. And the idea that Manafort`s own lawyers
are copping to the fact that what they gave them was like a big hefty chunk
of whatever it was.
WHEELER: And their – I mean, his lawyers also say – I mean, they kind of
go back and forth on how they`re explaining it, but they also say it was so
complex and so focused that I don`t understand it. And so the judgment
came in case Amy Berman Jackson is like that`s the point right?
HAYES: Right. And so her discussions about why it was material are
actually really interesting. But Mueller isn`t saying that. Mueller has
been silent about what that August 2nd, 2016 meeting is. We know it`s
central to the investigation. He just isn`t going to tell us what it
HAYES: And there`s – and the last question I guess is what – I mean,
there has been so much about when it`s going to end. There are sources at
NBC News, congressional sources and others who have said that it`s wrapping
up soon. Other organizations have reported the same. The Special
Counsel`s office pushback and said no, not next week. What do you make of
WHEELER: I have no idea. I mean –
HAYES: Good. Well, that`s a nice answer because that`s how I feel too.
WHEELER: Yes. I mean, I have no idea. I mean, there`s obviously
investigative things we`re waiting to come in like the mystery appellant
that is before the Supreme Court. And there you know, there`s like three
or four other pieces that we know have yet to come in. But yes, I`m
hearing like you are that we`re really close. I just don`t know whether
that meeting is a week from Monday or mid-March.
HAYES: Right. All right, Marcy Wheeler, thank you so much. Coming up,
Senator Elizabeth Warren on her pledge to shut down big donor access to her
presidential campaign. She joins me to talk about that next.
CHRIS HAYES, ANCHOR, MSNBC NEWS: Senator and Democratic presidential
candidate Elizabeth Warren just blew up her fundraising operation, swearing
off big ticket fundraising events and calls to wealthy donors in favor of
the Wall Street Journal reports of pay what you can events, as a major
departure from the usual presidential campaign.
Here to talk about the decision and others in her campaign, Democratic
Senator Elizabeth Warren. Senator, what - what caused this decision, what
- what does it mean for you?
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D), M.A.: So look, we`ve got a problem in democracy
right now, and that is that money just has too much influence in
Washington. And we have a chance right now in a Democratic primary, we`re
in a primary, it`s Democrats against Democrats, to say here`s how we`re
going to do this.
We`re going to build from the grass roots. We`re actually going to build a
foundation for the Democratic Party that is really about face to face,
person to person, neighbor to neighbor people who are engaged in this
campaign, whether they can give five - 50 bucks or thousands of dollars.
What we care about is that we have a whole movement of engaged people who
are going to help us get elected, not just to the White House, but help us
take Congress, help us take state houses, help us take the governor`s
mansions and help us have the momentum we`re going to need to make the
changes once we`re elected.
This is about how we build real change and I`m excited about it.
HAYES: So here`s my question, you`ve been - you`ve been in politics for a
little while, you`ve just recently re-elected.
WARREN: That`s right, one Senate term.
HAYES: And during that time - right, one Senate term, right. So - and
during that time you have done - you`ve done calls to wealthy donors,
you`ve done big ticket fundraisers, you`ve put together a pretty good war
chest, I think about $11 million that you had amassed.
What does that say about what you were doing before? This is the right way
to do it now, why now and why not before?
WARREN: So look, I`ve never actually been in a deeply competitive primary,
I get it. Republicans come to the table armed to the teeth. They`ve got
all of their donors, their wealthy, wealthy donors.
They`ve got their super PACs, they`ve got their dart money, they got
everything going for them. And I`m just going to be blunt, I do not
believe in unilateral disarmament. We`ve got to go into these fights and
we got to be willing to win these fights.
HAYES: So this just applies to the primary, like were to get the
nomination or anyone else who gets the nomination like just raise all the
money you can however you can.
WARREN: Yes, but here`s what I want you to see that`s different about it,
Chris, think about the difference once we`re down to the two candidates.
If the Democrats have spent the next year in a primary building this thing
face to face, person to person, neighbor to neighbor across the country,
think of the kind of foundation that we have laid down so that when we`re
really up against it in the general election, it`s not just money to fund
television ads, it`s all the folks who will do the door knocking, it`s all
the folks who will make the phone calls, it`s all the folks who will reach
out to their network.
Because you know how we`re going to win in 2020? It`s going to be big,
it`s going to be people who voted for Donald Trump last time around, it`s
going to be people who haven`t voted at all, it`s going to be people who
see a vision and a way to make this democracy work, not just for the rich
and the powerful but make this democracy work for everyone.
HAYES: Final question on this and then I want to ask a few other questions
about some stuff that is happening in the campaign proposal you put
forward. But for this (ph) final question, I guess the question is how
much is this an either or, right, there are campaigns that are able to
build both a sort of that kind of grassroots fundraising machinery and also
wealthy donors and also do big ticket fundraising.
What does it mean for a candidates` time? Why - why make this sort of
WARREN: Well see that`s the real point, the best estimates are that most
candidates for office are spending about 70 percent of their time with
millionaires and billionaires, spending it behind closed doors at fancy
cocktail receptions and private dinners in mansions.
Let me tell you what I`m going to do tonight, I`m going to call time
tonight. You know what call time is.
HAYES: I do know what call time is, it`s -
WARREN: This is when you call and say thank you.
HAYES: – it gives me a stomach ache and I don`t even have to do call
WARREN: Well I am doing call time tonight and tomorrow night and the next
night. But here`s the deal, the people I`m calling to say thank you to,
I`m going to call not based on how much money they kicked in, I`m just
going to pick these numbers up randomly and I`m going to call people and
say thank you very much for being part of this, thank you for going to
elizabethwarren.com, signing up whether you signed up for five bucks or 25
bucks or 50 bucks, thank you for volunteering, because that`s how we get a
chance to build a democracy.
You know, Chris, I`m only going to come this way once as a first time
candidate for president, I want to run a campaign that`s based on ideas,
that`s based on principles, that`s based on restoring democracy and I think
this is a way to do that. Join us.
HAYES: So to segue to that, you have a very ambitious child - universal
childcare proposal, your campaign put out I think about a week ago if I`m
not mistaken. And I want to ask this question, so there are - so let`s say
you view the problem, which I think is obviously a problem that parents,
particularly women do not have access to childcare.
It hurts the female labor force participation, it`s an incredible financial
burden. So there`s two different ways you can imagine about solving that
problem. One is universal child care that you stand up and sort of
accredit through the federal government, which is - looks like what you`re
The other would be just like give people a tax credit, give them a
childcare tax credit and then they could go out there into the marketplace
and find it. Why did you choose your path?
WARREN: So I chose it for a couple of reasons, the first one is it`s the
way to get real money into it for everyone. This is childcare - universal
childcare and I should say early learning. It`s an investment from zero to
five in our future.
And so it`s about childcare for all our kids, but it`s also about putting
the money into early learning, because we have learned that nickels spent
on two year olds and three year olds and four year olds so they`re ready to
go to kindergarten and ready to learn pays off many, many, many times over
through the years.
So what this permits us to do is to have enough money, enough resources and
then go straight in to the communities and the providers, the non-profits,
the towns and cities that want to do this and say here are the standards,
if you`ll meet those standards, we`ll make sure there`s money available.
And by the way, we`ll also make sure that the childcare providers who are
taking care of our most precious resource get paid like public school
teachers. We`ll even put some money in to help them bring up the standards
so that happens.
So think of this, Chris, not just as could your kids get parked in front of
a TV set and at least be safe for a few hours, it`s really about an
investment in our children so they have the best possible start.
This is how we build a real future in which not just the children of rich
people but the children of everyone get a real chance to build lives that
HAYES: There are two big sort of domestic policy proposals your campaign
has unveiled. You`ve got a variety of positions, but this and the wealth
tax. And this is a question I`ve been asking every candidate, you - let`s
say you get elected and let`s say by some sort of political miracle frankly
that the Democrats have both the House and the Senate maybe even by a
healthy margin in the Senate, what`s your first big domestic legislation,
the first big bill that President Warren moves?
WARREN: Anti-corruption, the problem we`ve got in Washington right now is
that money is influencing basically every decision that goes on. So
whatever brings you to the table to say I care about what`s happening in
Washington, whether it`s climate change that`s baring down on us, whether
or not it`s student loan debt that you can`t pay, whether or not it`s
housing that`s unaffordable, whether or not it`s childcare, whether or not
it`s a criminal justice system that works great for those who are running
private prisons but not for people who`s lives are being destroyed, whether
it`s prescription drugs, I guarantee you every one of those crosses through
the intersection of the influence of money.
And when you`ve got a government that`s working great for the rich and the
powerful and not working for anyone else, it`s corruption and we need to
call it out. So I`ve put together - it`s a big bill because it`s a big
problem - but it has the features we need to just beat back some of the
influence of money.
End lobbying as we know it, force the United States Supreme Court to have
to follow basic ethics rules, stop the revolving door between Wall Street
and Washington. Oh and here`s one, everybody who runs for federal office
has to put their tax returns online.
We`ve got to make this government work again for everyone, because we got
to make this country work again for everyone. And it starts by reducing
the influence of money and increasing the influence of the voices of people
all across this country.
That`s - that`s the kind of campaign that I believe and that`s - this is my
chance to get out there and fight for it.
HAYES: That`s a - that`s a straightforward answer, admirably so. A second
question I`ve been asking everyone and this is the final one and I`ll let
you go. The filibuster, there has been - Jay Inslee who is the governor of
Washington, he`s not a U.S. senator so there`s a different perspective on
this, said today he would - he thinks they should get rid of the
There`s some back and forth among different people. Would you support
ending the filibuster in the near future?
WARREN: So I already have a record on this, back when the Republicans were
blocking everything that we were trying to do, do you remember back in 2013
and 2014, man I was one of the ones out there fighting to beat back the
And we did. We chopped the filibuster back a lot. You may remember they
not only were blocking judges, they were blocking the head of the Consumer
Financial Protection Bureau so it couldn`t take on its power, blocking the
NLRB so workers wouldn`t have a place to be able to go to have their
complaints heard when - when their employers broke the law.
And I was all for it. My view on this is everything stays on the table.
We can`t live in a world where the Republicans do what they want like they
got rid of the filibuster for the Supreme Court, and then we turn around
and as Democrats say oh, we`re going to play by some set of rules that are
long passed now.
My view is it all stays on the table.
HAYES: All right Senator Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts, thank you very
much, I appreciate you making time tonight.
WARREN: Thank you.
HAYES: Ahead, the climate fight cutting through the heart of the
Democratic Party debate, plus is Stacey Abrams about to run for president?
I asked her last night that very question in front of a ruckus (ph) live
audience and you will hear her fascinating answer next.
We did our second ever live “Why Is This Happening?” podcast taping last
night at a sold out Gramercy Theatre here in New York City with Stacey
Abrams. Abrams of course the former Democratic candidate for governor of
Georgia who recently testified before House Democrats on voting rights and
And one of the first things we talked about was that moment when minority
leader Chuck Schumer asked her to be the one to give the response to the
state of the union address.
STACEY ABRAMS, (D) GEORGIA 2018 GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE: So, I actually
saw Leader Schumer in New York. I`m sorry, in D.C. and we were meeting to
talk about this other thing he has got thoughts of me doing but before we
had that conversation.
(cheers and applause)
. but before we had that conversation he actually told everyone else to
leave the room and I`m thinking how am I in trouble already? And he said,
Speaker Pelosi and I were having this discussion. This is my year to pick
the person. But she and I do this in tandem and we unanimously wanted you
to be the person to do the State of the Union response. And I looked and
the room, wait, I am alone, okay.
And I was flabbergasted. It was amazing he would ask me to do it when you
guys did see the results of the election, right?
HAYES: We talked about a whole range of topics during our hour plus long
conversation including her upbringing, the arc of her political career and
what`s next for the Georgia democrat. And it was here I learned among other
things Stacey Abrams is very, very funny.
HAYES: Are you considering running for Senate.
ABRAMS: I am considering it.
HAYES: Are you a possible presidential candidate?
HAYES: I mean, let me hone in. Is that something you`re actively thinking
ABRAMS: I will say this, I`ve been approached by groups and by individuals
who have asked me to think about it and I am – I don`t think you say no to
anything. I think the best decision .
HAYES: Like president.
HAYES: .for instance.
ABRAMS: Look, if Idris Elba is like, would you like to go out with me,
I`m not going to just say no because.
HAYES: You`d be like, I`m considering it Idris.
ABRAMS: Exactly. I am. I`m giving it careful thought, where are we
HAYES: That entire conversation which was a blast to do will be available
wherever you get your podcast first thing tomorrow morning so subscribe
HAYES: Just got some breaking news in the Mueller probe. Paul Manafort
has through his lawyers asked the D.C. District Court judge to give him a
sentence significantly below the statutory minimum of ten years. Manafort
wants to serve the time in his D.C. case at the same time as his sentence
in the Virginia case, not surprising. His attorneys write quote,
“importantly the defendant has not been charged with any crimes related to
the primary focus of the special counsel`s investigation otherwise referred
to as Russian collusion.”
Meanwhile, there is an intensifying debate among democrats about how
ambitious to be and how hard to push on addressing the current climate
emergency. And while that is happening in the Democratic Party, the party
that controls the White House and the Senate is an outlier among all major
parties in the entire developed world in their ridiculous juvenile,
embarrassing and idiotic continued denial of the obvious facts of the
There is no party like the Republican Party in the world in this respect.
They`re basically trying to turn the president`s tweets about how when it
gets cold we could use more global warming, a joke he`s made at least 19
times in the last 6 years, into an official White House trolling panel.
They`re putting together this body. They`ve even got a guy who compared
persecution of carbon to persecution of the Jews in Nazi Germany.
WILLIAM HAPPER, CLIMATE CHANGE PANEL MEMBER: You know I get called a
denier and anyone who objects to all of the hype gets called a denier.
That`s supposed to make me a Holocaust denier. You know I`m getting tired
of that and the comment I made was the demonization of carbon dioxide is
just like the demonization of the poor Jews under Hitler. Carbon Dioxide
is actually a benefit to the world and so were the Jews.
HAYES: OK. They also announced they are nominating this woman, the U.S.
Ambassador to Canada, Kelly Knight Craft, as the next Ambassador to the
United Nations which is a huge deal. That`s a cabinet-level post, OK? And
this is what this individual said about literally the most pressing global
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you yourself believe in climate change?
KELLY KNIGHT CRAFT, UNITED STATES AMBASSADOR TO CANADA: I believe there
are signs both on both sides that are accurate.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You believe that there are scientists that – science
that proves there is – man is not causing climate change?
CRAFT: Well, I think both sides have - you know they have their own results
from their studies, and I appreciate and I respect both sides of the
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Okay.
HAYES: Your possible next U.N. Ambassador, America. By the way, Kraft`s
husband is a billionaire co-executive who “The New York Times” reports has
a close relationship with former EPA Chief Scott Pruitt.
Meanwhile back on planet earth, literally, democrats are engaged in a
spirited debate about how big to go. Is the climate crisis an existential
threat that exists on another plane in which all old ways of doing things
need to be thrown out and rethought or is it just another problem we face,
a real one, that we have to use our current tools to evaluate and fix?
Joining me now, Heather McGhee, a distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos who
made an emotional plea for urgent action yesterday on “Meet the Press,” and
Neera Tanden who is
president at the Center for American Progress.
So I think this Green New Deal debate is interesting because first of all,
let`s just say that it`s only happening in one part of American politics
because there is a side doing things like nominating that U.N. Ambassador,
who can`t - like there is nothing happening over there. Right? What do you
see the debate - what are the axis of debates that are happening here,
HEATHER MCGHEE, ADVOCATE AND FORMER PRESIDENT OF DEMOS: So I think
everything changed when the latest U.N. climate report came out. My son was
a month old when that came out, and I sat there and just had all the range
of feelings when you realize this person you brought into the world is
going to be inheriting, if we do nothing over the next 12 years, basically
a nightmare. So, you know, I think most of the Democratic Party, much of
the main stream has been working for a very long time – for 10 years for
20 years on a plan that frankly has just been surpassed. There is now a new
goalpost, I wish that there weren`t but there is.
MCGHEE: And so the Green New Deal, the resolution, the idea, the vision
that I will say is popular, immensely popular just in its raw form, the
idea of using this crisis as an opportunity to rebuild the American dream
and to channel that American ingenuity I grew up thinking was our hallmark
as this country, that we were Superman and that when a meteor was going to
be coming towards the planet, absolutely this country would suit up and get
That idea of the Green New Deal is something that is aspirational but also
absolutely the minimum that we need to do in order to stave off planetary
disaster. That`s where we need to be and something popular with 80 percent
of Americans including the majority of republicans.
HAYES: Where do we see this discussion, sort of the axes of tension in the
NEERA TANDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS: So I think
it`s - you know I agree with Heather, that I think the IPCC report
fundamentally changed the calculus of this issue. But I really think if
you think about how we`ve made substantial social change in the last 100
years, it`s both a mixture of widespread political movements that see a
And that is what is so important about the Green New Deal is that it`s
recognizing the cataclysmic effects of climate change. But I also think
you need to at some point have a specific plan just like the actual new
deal had. And that`s the energy behind the Green New Deal.
It`s that we are recognizing the scale of the problem. I do think this
debate is between – has unfortunately become like a kind of effort of
people talking past each other on what is the right solution, how do we
actually get there. We have made progress there for a period – like
periods of time.
We were in the Paris deal; we did have the clean power plant. Those are
being destroyed. It`s not that they`re neutral, it`s not like the
republican administration signed Donald Trump is neutral on these topics–
HAYES: No, no, of course not.
TANDEN: It`s not like there`s nothing happening over there. There is an
assault on climate scientists on the – any effort in this country to deal
And I think a lot of democrats are caught between these two issues which is
they`re defending against Trump, right, and trying to take on Trump. But
also recognizing that it is a cataclysmic challenge and we can`t just have
the solutions we`ve had in the past.
HAYES: So, to me there`s two things happening, right? Like one is about
the sort of size of the scope of the Green New Deal division, right, which
is like not just a price on carbon, right? It`s a bunch of stuff about
transition in the economy, Medicare for all. That said, I want to put that
But the other thing to me is just that a fight in the Democratic Party
right now and in this primary that will get sorted about prioritization.
That to me is one of the key things that`s happening. And I asked this –
I just asked Elizabeth Warren–
HAYES: – and you heard her answer. I asked this of every candidate.
It`s like what`s the first bill you move?
HAYES: What`s the big first domestic priority? And I think what we`re
seeing right now is a fight in the party and partly that being worked out
in real-time, Heather, that like climate`s the answer to that, should be
the answer to that question.
MCGHEE: Well, I think the twin crises of our time are in equality and
climate change. And the answer to both is more democracy. So, I actually
agree with Senator Warren that it`s important to get the kind of climate
bill that this planet desperately needs.
We needed to make the people who are in office at that time inoculated from
the fossil fuel money that`s going to be–
MCGHEE: – waiting for them on the other side. So, I see the theory of
the case, but you can`t get the planet we deserve, that our children
deserve without dealing with corruption.
HAYES: Do you see that, Neera, that priority question? Because I watched
– I have watched the 2008 primary and I watched healthcare I mean through
the process of that primary healthcare – it became clear that whoever was
going to win that primary back in 2008–
HAYES: – it was going to be a healthcare bill. Like that was going to –
like they had to deal with the stimulus because the economy fell apart.
But like the first big thing. Do you think we`re watching this sort of
prioritization battle kind of play out now?
TANDEN: Absolutely. I think that that is part of what it is. I hope that
through this debate, we have not just a discussion of motive and who cares
most about this, but what actually also happened in the 2008 campaign and I
was on all sides of the debate was an actual discussion of how these plans
So, as you remember there was detailed discussion back and forth between
then Senator Obama and then Senator Clinton about how you actually got–
TANDEN: – a universal healthcare plan and whether we`d have an individual
mandate or not. And I – and what I think is so vital about this debate is
that we have a sense of urgency about it.
But it also believed that the next president has to have a specific plan.
Not just a resolution, a resolution is really important, but a specific
plan to deal with the climate crisis–
TANDEN: – because if we`re just talking about what we like and what we
care about and the priority and we don`t have specific goals or a specific
legislation, then that too will let a lot of people–
TANDEN: – off the hook.
HAYES: Politically (ph).
MCGHEE: So, I think this is a really important thing to respond to because
there absolutely needs to be a next part of the Green New Deal movement,
which is legislation.
MCGHEE: But I think that we can do that. And the first step to doing that
is getting a sense of the Democratic Party on the senate floor that we are
all behind this vision. There are things that are happening all across the
country at the state level that`ll be components of the Green New Deal.
And it`s not like we don`t have the answers. I mean, we have this weird
can`t do right now–
MCGHEE: – in this country. Even among democrats. We built the Hoover
Dam; we put the man on the moon.
MCGHEE: Like why can`t we (inaudible)–
HAYES: Well, let me say as a final point to Neera`s point–
TANDEN: But let me just say, I agree with that.
TANDEN: We did put the man on the moon, and that`s what I appreciate about
the Green New Deal.
TANDEN: But there was a plan to put a man on the moon. That`s my only
HAYES: Let me say that living through the 2008 primary about the mandate,
Barack Obama was like, no, you can`t have the mandate and won the
nomination. OK, we have the mandate. So, it`s like – it mattered more
what sort of consensus was in either the positions.
Heather McGhee and Neera Tanden, thank you both.
That is “ALL IN” for this evening.
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