Town hall with Elizabeth Warren. TRANSCRIPT: 6/5/19.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER: There is something happening with Elizabeth Warren.
(UNKNOWN): Elizabeth Warren’s popularity is gaining in the polls
ANNOUNCER: In a field full of candidates, she’s the one with a plan
WARREN: I got a plan for that.
I got a plan.
I’ve got a plan for that.
ANNOUNCER: But does she have a plan to win in the places that made
Donald Trump president?
WARREN: We’re at risk in 2020, and Donald Trump puts us squarely in
ANNOUNCER: Live from Fort Wayne, Indiana, in the heart of Trump
country, an “All In” 2020 candidate town hall.
WARREN: I’m Elizabeth Warren. I’m running for president of the
United States. And I have a plan to do it.
ANNOUNCER: Here now, Chris Hayes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Good evening from Fort Wayne, Indiana. I’m Chris Hayes.
Thank you all for being with me here at Ceruti’s Bergstaff Place. The
address here, appropriately enough, is 2020 East Washington Boulevard.
It’s a former brewery and a bottling plant back all the way back to 1903.
It’s our venue tonight and for a very special town hall event.
We are in the heart of the industrial Midwest here in Fort Wayne,
Indiana. It’s a city that’s seen its fortunes rise and fall over the past
century in a state that helped power Donald Trump to victory in 2016 amid
his promises of protecting jobs and keeping factories open.
Now, a lot of people talk about how the Trump base is the Trump base
and no one’s ever going to defect from Donald Trump ever, but when you go
back to 2016, you look at those 77,000 votes that cost three key states,
when you look at the overperformance Donald Trump had in states like
Indiana and Ohio and those swing states he narrowly eked out, the question
is, are some of those voters up for play? And what would it look like if
they were willing to listen or vote for another candidate?
It’s the reason, I think, that Elizabeth Warren wants to co-opt some
of the central economic rhetoric of Donald Trump. Donald Trump came to
places like Fort Wayne and all through the industrial Midwest and said I’m
going to be your protector and fighter to keep jobs here.
Well, just in the last day, in a swing through the industrial
Midwest, Elizabeth Warren has unveiled yet another new plan, this one
geared towards what she calls economic patriotism, an attempt to kind of
recast some of the Trumpian appeals to people’s material interests in many
of the places of the country that have seen manufacturing go away and
economic stagnation set in.
And with that, I would like to introduce tonight’s guest, Senator
HAYES: How are you, Senator?
WARREN: Hi, it’s good to see you.
HAYES: Have a seat. It’s good to see you.
WARREN: It’s good to see you.
HAYES: Well, the folks in this room obviously are very excited to
WARREN: Well, I’m very excited to see all of them.
HAYES: So here’s a question that I got from a bunch of people. We
went back and forth with our people. We said, where would you like to do a
town hall? We’d like to do a town hall with you. And you guys said Fort
HAYES: Why are we in Fort Wayne, Indiana?
WARREN: We’re in Fort Wayne, Indiana, because people in Indiana
understand jobs. They understand how you build an economy that doesn’t
just work for a thin slice at the top, but an economy that works for
But people in Fort Wayne, Indiana, also understand that leaving it to
a handful of giant multinational corporations to build our economy just
isn’t working. You know, those big corporations, they don’t have any
loyalty to America. They don’t have any loyalty to American workers.
They have loyalty to exactly one thing, and that is their own
profits. And what we’ve got to do is we’ve got to have a government that
doesn’t say, hey, whatever it is that the giant multinational corporations
want, let us help you. We’ve got to have a government that says we need
this economy, we need this country to work for working people. And that’s
what we’re going to do.
HAYES: You know, there’s an interesting sort of message and
messenger question here, right? So, you know, I think that that’s a very -
- that’s a message I think that has some real appeal in places like this
and across the industrial Midwest.
I think there are people that think – that see you and say, oh,
that’s – Elizabeth Warren is a Harvard law professor. She’s a liberal
from Massachusetts. And even if I like her, like, is that – are people
going to listen to that? Are you the messenger who can talk to the folks
that are experiencing that in places like Fort Wayne and beyond?
WARREN: So, look, this is the 20th state I have come to, to do a
town hall, 20 states plus Puerto Rico. I’ve done 90-plus town halls now.
And it’s about being out and talking to people.
You know, keep in mind, I was born and raised in Oklahoma. I have
three much older brothers. I was that late in life baby, always referred
to as “the surprise.”
All three of my brothers went off and joined the military. My oldest
brother was career military. He spent about five-and-a-half years in
combat in Vietnam off and on. We were lucky to get him back home. My
second brother was stationed overseas. My third trained as a combat medic.
Me, I had a different dream. And my dream was to become a public
school teacher. Can we hear it for America’s public school teachers?
It’s all I ever wanted was to be a public school teacher. And by the
time I graduated from high school, my family didn’t have the money for a
college application, much less to send me off to four years of school. And
like a whole lot of folks in America, I don’t have a real straight line
story. You know, mine starts with I got a scholarship to college, yay!
And then at 19…
HAYES: And you dropped out.
WARREN: I fell in love.
HAYES: You know, I did not know this part. Somehow – I read a lot
of it. I didn’t know this part. You are 19 years old.
HAYES: You get a – you’re from Oklahoma. Got three brothers who
joined the service. You get a national debating scholarship.
HAYES: Right. George Washington. Very fancy, expensive school.
WARREN: Yep, yep.
HAYES: You go there, and then you’re like I’m out after a year.
WARREN: I fell in love and got married to the first husband. Never
good when you have to number ‘em.
But – and then, after I got married, I thought that’s it for me. I
got a full-time job, minimum wage, answering phones. And I thought, OK,
it’s a good job. It’s a life I chose, but it wasn’t the dream, to teach
So here it was for me. It happened. I found a commuter college. We
were living in Houston by then, or outside Houston, 45 minutes away, it
cost $50 a semester. That was my chance, a four-year diploma. I hung on
for dear life, and I became a special needs teacher. I have lived my
HAYES: A huge part of your story personally, when you talk about
your trajectory, which is a really remarkable one, is making a bunch of
decisions buffeted against different forces, right? Can you find
One of those is whether you can control your reproductive freedom,
right, for women that are making decisions about whether they’re going to
go to school, things like that. There was an interesting thing that
happened today. Former Vice President Joe Biden came out and said that he
would not support repealing the Hyde amendment. That is a provision, a
federal law, that bars the federal government from funding abortion
services from Medicare and Medicaid and others. You disagree with that
WARREN: Yes, I do.
HAYES: Is Joe Biden wrong?
HAYES: Why is he wrong?
WARREN: Here’s how I look at this. I’ve lived in an America where
abortions were illegal. And understand this: Women still got abortions.
Now, some got lucky on what happened and some got really unlucky on what
But the bottom line is they were there. And under the Hyde
amendment, under every one of these efforts to try to chip away or to push
back or to get rid of Roe v. Wade, understand this. Women of means will
still have access to abortions. Who won’t will be poor women. It will be
working women, it will be women who can’t afford to take off three days
from work, will be very young women. It will be women who have been raped.
It will be women who have been molested by someone in their own family. We
do not pass laws that take away that freedom from the women who are most
HAYES: I should note, in the face of the Hyde amendment, though,
this is – this is not the sort of – when you’re talking about those laws
in Georgia and Alabama, frontal assaults on Roe, this has been the law for
WARREN: It’s been the law for a while, and it’s been wrong for a
long time. Because it really is. It’s just discrimination.
HAYES: But what do you say to someone who says, look, I
agree with you on substance, but if you look at the polling, right,
Americans have all sorts of cross-pressured moral views on abortion. There
is strong support for keeping Roe v. Wade.
HAYES: Right? People don’t want to…
WARREN: Three out of four people want to do that.
HAYES: Absolutely. But if you say government funding
abortion, the polling flips the other way, right? It’s not necessarily a
majority position. And what do you say to someone who says, no, this is
the smart political move, if you need to win in a general election, to
support the Hyde amendment?
WARREN: This is not about politics. What this is about is
about health care, about reproductive freedom, about economic freedom, and
about equal opportunity for all women. That’s what this is really about.
HAYES: So then the final question I guess is, are there
things – right, I mean, it would be amazing to live in a world in which
the right policy was always the best politics, right?
HAYES: But it’s not the world we live in. Right? I mean,
I guess my question is, are there things where you think substantively
that’s probably the right thing to do, but 70 percent of the public doesn’t
like it. Or that might be a good policy, but that’s going to be a very
tough sell in Pennsylvania.
WARREN: Look, the way I see this, is this is what
leadership is about. You really do work through what you believe is right.
And you get out there, and if most of America isn’t with you, then you talk
about it, and you make the arguments and you listen, because maybe you
don’t have it right. But that’s the whole point. You start with what you
believe is right and then you get out there and fight for it.
HAYES: I want to – let me poll the room for a second. By
WARREN: Oh, you’ve got an applause-o-meter? OK.
HAYES: Applause-o-meter. We’re improvising an applause-o-
WARREN: OK. OK.
HAYES: I’m going to ask you if your top issue is health
care, applause for health care as top issue?
How about jobs and the economy?
That’s interesting. That’s interesting.
WARREN: That’s interesting.
And what about – a lot of people say this in polling among
Democratic primary voters, your number-one issue is just beating Donald
We’re actually – we’re going to talk to a few folks who
are here from Indiana…
HAYES: … and the area around, including a few that voted
for Donald Trump…
WARREN: I’m glad.
HAYES: … and then see what they have to say, what
questions they have for you. Don’t go anywhere. We will be right back
with Senator Elizabeth Warren.
HAYES: You may remember shortly after he won in 2016, but
before he was sworn in, Donald Trump famously came to Indiana to the
Carrier heating and air conditioning factory, along with Mike Pence, to
make a big show about he personally having saved over 1,100 jobs from going
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PENCE: Thanks to the initiative and the leadership of
President-elect Donald Trump, Carrier has decided to stay and grow right
here in America.
TRUMP: Companies are not going to leave the United States
anymore without consequences.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The deal was largely smoke and mirrors, and Carrier
would go on to have round after round of layoffs. Hundreds of jobs did, in
fact, go to Mexico, where workers make around $3 bucks an hour, and the
laid-off Carrier workers who voted for Trump, like Renee Elliott, were left
to fend for themselves.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELLIOTT: I thought he was going to protect our jobs, you
know what I mean? We all voted for him. And then, boom. I felt betrayed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And joining us here tonight, we have Renee Elliott,
who you saw there. She was also in the room when the man that she voted
for came to Carrier to take credit for saving her job, which then was lost.
We have another Carrier worker, Frank Staples (ph), he is now out on
medical leave. He was a worker at Carrier for 14 years and he wrote in
Bernie Sanders in the 2016 presidential election.
We have Susan Cropper, who was laid off from her job at
United Technologies after 31 years on the job. She voted for Donald Trump,
as well, in 2016.
And rounding out our group, Dora Boyd, she’s a single
mother who works in a restaurant and voted for Hillary Clinton.
Let me start with you, Renee, because, you know, Donald
Trump came to places like Fort Wayne and said very clearly, like, I am not
going to let the jobs leave, he came here and said I’m not going to let
Carrier leave, and then they left. What do you feel about the guy now?
ELLIOTT: I feel duped. I don’t have a lot of faith in
political candidates much anymore. You know, they make promises, you know,
they – they make them and they break them.
HAYES: How about you, Susan? How do you feel?
CROPPER: About like Renee. You know, I just feel like
I’ve been betrayed, let down. I thought Trump was going to really secure
American jobs, and that’s just not what’s happening out there at all. The
jobs that were saved in the Indy plant were never going to leave to begin
HAYES: So you feel like it was a con?
CROPPER: Oh, absolutely.
HAYES: Senator, there are – you know, this was one of the
key parts of the appeal, I think, in certain parts of the industrial
Midwest, particularly the white voters in the industrial Midwest, which was
“I will save your jobs.” What do you say to folks like Renee or Susan –
and there are a lot more out there, folks in Lordstown, to say, listen, you
should listen to what I have to tell you.
WARREN: OK, so the thing is, you just can’t wave your
arms. You know that. It’s that you’ve really got to have a plan. And I
do have a plan on this.
So here’s how it starts. I’m looking to make about 1.2
million new jobs, new jobs that are good jobs, that are jobs in
manufacturing, that are going to be good union jobs, the kind of jobs on
which people can build a future.
And here’s the idea behind it. Right now we’ve got a
climate crisis in this country and in this world. It threatens us all.
Worldwide, there is about a $23 trillion dollar market for fighting back
against climate change. And that’s going to mean a lot of research, a lot
of innovation, and a lot of manufacturing to push back against that.
My plan is to make America the leader in that fight. We
doubled down, tripled down, go 10-fold on the research from where it’s been
before, and we say to anybody who wants to use that research, who wants to
innovate around it, good for you. You can do it, but you have to produce
the products right here in the United States of America. You have to build
those jobs here.
If American taxpayers are the ones who are going to foot
the bill for the research, then by golly, it’s going to produce good
American jobs right here. So that’s one part.
One more part is a commitment to spend about $1.5 trillion
in making our federal government go green. It’s buy the products – and
here again, it’s going to be all buy American. We are going to change our
fleet of cars, we’re going to bring in new products, we’re going to change
what happens with our buildings.
And look what that does. That not only helps improve on
the climate front, but it creates demand, demand to keep those factories
open, demand to expand those factories and those jobs.
And then there’s one more part to it. And that is, look,
even if we manage to go entirely carbon neutral by 2030, we’re only about
20 percent of the world on this. There’s another 80 percent. And that’s
where the worldwide demand for change is.
So, huge market, $23 trillion market. Right now, the
Chinese spend a hundred times what we spend here in the United States
marketing their manufactured products around the world. I say we’re going
to spend that money in the United States to market American products around
the world. That’s how we’re going to produce these jobs.
ELLIOTT: What we’re going to do – yes, there is a climate
crisis, but what are we going to do about the opioid crisis that we have
going on here? There are so many. I mean, you know, it’s in the inner
cities and it’s the younger generation and the ones my kids’ age. I see
everywhere. And it’s so much so now that you cannot ignore it. You know
what I mean? It’s bad.
WARREN: So I have a plan for this.
ELLIOTT: Let’s hear it.
WARREN: It’s already out there. It’s with Elijah
Cummings, congressman from Maryland. We’ve got over 100 cosponsors right
now between the House and the Senate.
And here’s how this plan works. It starts with exactly
what you said, and that is how big this problem is. You realize just
something short of 200 people will die today from an overdose? It’s like a
plane crash. And another one tomorrow and the next day and the next day
and the next day.
And here’s the deal. The problem keeps getting bigger, and
right now the federal government just keeps nibbling behind it. We spend a
little more, we spend a little more, but the problem gets bigger.
If someone came to you who loves you and said, I know I got
a problem, they have a less than one in six chance of getting the medical
help that they need. Why? Not because we don’t know what to do, but
because right now we won’t make the investment to help them. Not enough
beds, not enough doctors, not enough rehab centers.
So my plan with Congressman Cummings is over the next 10
years, we’re going to put $100 billion – I’ve already got this paid for –
$100 billion in to hit this opioid crisis head on and bring it to its
knees. We’ve got to save the people we love.
HAYES: I want to – just – I want to circle back around
to the feasibility of these plans.
HAYES: I think that’s a question. But, Dora, you had a
BOYD: Yes, I’m a single mother. My main concern is my
child. The children are the future. What is your plan for that and also
for people that have to pick whether you’re going to pay – if you’re going
to work a full-time job to pay for childcare or if you’re going to work a
full-time job and hope you can rely on somebody that – because in my
perspective, everyone doesn’t have an aunt like yours. So what is your
plan for that?
WARREN: So, as you know, this one’s really personal for
me. When I got my first full-time teaching job, I had two little ones
under feet. And I loved that job. I was so excited by that job.
But there I was. You know, I’m still doing dinner at 8
o’clock at night, I’m giving baths at 9 o’clock, get them into bed, and
I’ve got three loads of laundry, and then I’ve got my class preps. It was
hard. But I could do hard.
The part I couldn’t do was when the babysitter quit, and
then when the daycare center turned out to be a mess, and then when the
second daycare center said, no, they were moving, and then one more and one
more and one more.
And then there was the night, kids were in bed, my Aunt Bee
called, and said how are you doing, honey? She’s my widowed Aunt Bee from
Oklahoma. And I said, fine. And then I burst into tears. And I said, I
want to quit. It just – it’s like it just fell out of my mouth. You know
what this is like, Renee.
And Aunt Bee listened while I cried and I cried. And finally I blew my
nose, got myself back together, and she said the words that changed my
life. She said I can’t get there tomorrow, but I will come on Thursday.
She arrived with seven suitcases and a Pekingese named Buddy and stayed for
16 years. And that’s how I got to have a job.
But it’s just like you said. If everybody in the world had
an Aunt Bee, we’d all be fine. But they don’t. So this is a big priority
What I’ve got is a two-cent wealth tax on the biggest
fortunes in this country, the top 0.1 percent. Anybody who’s already made
$50 million, the 50 millionth and first dollar, we’re going to do two cent
tax. They pitch in that two cents and two cents on every dollar after
That will give us enough money to do universal childcare
for every baby aged zero to five, universal pre-K for every 3-year-old and
4-year-old, and raise the wages of every childcare worker and preschool
teacher to the levels that they deserve. That’s how it is.
Look, high-quality child care early on, high-quality pre-K,
that’s all the difference in the world. And that should not be reserved
for the children of the well-to-do. That’s an investment we should make in
every child in this country.
HAYES: So Senator’s already got – I count three plans
already that have been rolled out.
HAYES: So there’s three plans.
WARREN: I’ve still got more.
HAYES: I know you do. I know you do. I’ve been on your
website. I want to talk a little bit about, like, whether the plans can be
reality. Right? You can – anyone can put something on – Donald Trump
can come to a place like Fort Wayne and say…
(UNKNOWN): And he did.
HAYES: And he did. And he could say, I am waving the
magic wand and you’re never going to see – and the jobs will come back.
The question is, how do you make that a reality? Can you make that a
reality? I want to talk to you folks about that and the senator right
after we take this quick break. Don’t go anywhere.
HAYES: All right. We’re back here in Fort Wayne with
Senator Warren. You know, we were just talking about the feasibility of
plans, OK. And promises are made by politicians all the time. They are
not always kept. And part of that has to do with who has power, right, in
So I want to play this clip we dug up of you in 2005.
Senator Warren is not a lifelong politician. You were not – you were a
Harvard law professor at the time and you were going to Capitol Hill to
testify on your area of expertise, the bankruptcy bill. And there were a
bunch of politicians who were backing the credit card industry, trying to
make it harder for people to be able to declare bankruptcy.
WARREN: That’s right.
HAYES: And you went to testify. And you ended up going
toe to toe with some of those senators who were defending the credit card
industry, including one senator in particular. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WARREN: I submit, Senator, that there are many in the
credit industry right now who are getting their bankruptcies prepaid. That
is, they have squeezed enough out of these families in interest and fees
and payments that…
BIDEN: Maybe we should talk about usury rates, then.
Maybe that’s what we should be talking about, not bankruptcy.
WARREN: Senator, I’ll be the first. Invite me.
BIDEN: I know you will, but let’s call a spade a spade.
Your problem with the credit card companies is usury rates from your
position. It’s not about the bankruptcy bill.
WARREN: But, Senator, if you’re not going to fix that
problem, you can’t take away the last shred of protection from these
BIDEN: I got it, OK. All right. You’re very good,
Professor. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Do you remember that?
WARREN: Yes. I used to die my hair brown.
HAYES: What do you learn from that exchange that made you
want to end up going into politics?
WARREN: That you don’t get what you don’t fight for. And
that that’s actually a good example. I got in there and fought for what I
believed in. I – over a million families a year were filing for
bankruptcy at the time that that was going on. There were people who’d had
terrible medical problems, people who had lost jobs for extended periods of
time, people who’d been left behind after a divorce or a death in the
family. And those credit card companies, they just wanted to wring the
last possible nickel out of them.
Those companies were profitable in the extreme. And you
know who they were making most of their money off of? Families that were
just right at the edge. And they wanted to make it harder for those
families when it all went just completely wrong to get a chance to get back
on their feet. I got in that fight, and I’m proud to have been in that
HAYES: But that – that relates to the way power works in
Washington. It’s something you’ve talked about a lot. Frank, you were –
you wanted to say something before. And I want to ask you – ask you this.
I mean, when you hear Senator Warren say we’re going to spend $100 billion
on this and we’ve got a $1 trillion plan for this, and we’re going to do
this, like, do you think in your head, I can see that actually happening
and making things better here? Or do you think to yourself, that seems
STAPLES: It’s hard to believe, because, first of all, we
need to know where that money is coming from. Does that mean my taxes are
going up? Does that mean the next guy’s taxes are going up? Is that
coming -where is that money coming from?
And the thing is, is – we get everybody promising
manufacturing is coming back. We get people promising that health care is
going to get better. We get promising all this stuff, and it never
happens, for a simple fact, like, on the IRS tax code. You have a 20
percent tax break for corporations that shut their companies down here and
move overseas. So they get that 20 percent to move their equipment.
STAPLES: So, you know, we had Trump – he come over to
Lordstown, he’d come to Indianapolis, he’d come Fort Wayne, he’d come
everywhere and say, hey, we’re going to bring these jobs back. He told the
guys in Lordstown, Ohio. Got a couple good friends over there, Chuckie
Dennison and Tommie Wallacle (ph). They were told, don’t sell your homes.
These jobs are going nowhere.
They shut the plant down. We just lost 300 jobs at Harley
Davidson in Kansas City, Missouri. They lost their jobs in May. You know,
we lost Rexnord in Indianapolis. We’ve lost all kinds of GMs at different
So you can sit here and tell me that you’re going to
produce these green jobs, you’re going to produce this. But you have all
these uneducated people – and I’m not saying they’re uneducated – but
they’re not in that field. You know? You’re saying we’re going to bring
these car companies back. So why don’t we take the tax codes off that are
given them and send them to leave? Quit giving these guys all this money.
WARREN: Frank, I’m there. This is part of the plan.
You’re right to ask the question, where does the money come from? Because
what happened is, yeah, the guy made a lot of promises, but then they
turned around and gave them even more tax breaks. And who did those tax
breaks go to? They went to the biggest corporations. They kept the
payments in there so, in effect, you can make money by shipping jobs
overseas under our current tax code.
So here’s how I propose to do this. We’re going to do
childcare. And, by the way, we’re going to do universal technical school,
college. We’re going to do student loan debt. We’re going to do all of
this with a two-cent wealth tax. That’s a tax on the $50 millionth and
first dollar of the richest fortunes in this country. That’s less than 0.1
percent. That’s – I’m guessing that’s not you. Right? You asked where
it’s going to come, where it’s going to come from. But the point is, it
comes from there.
The other part of the money, the money we’re talking about
here, for doing green manufacturing, where is that money going to come
from? It’s going to come from a couple of places. One, we’re going to
take away the subsidies from the oil and gas industry.
The second is just what you said. We’re going to take away
the tax breaks for moving jobs overseas.
And the third is we’re going to say to the biggest
corporations in America that publicly report huge profits to their
investors – yes, I’m looking at you, Amazon – reports more than $10
billion in profits and sets their CEO compensation based on that, tells the
investor community, and then turns around and pays zero in taxes? No more.
We’re going to have all these big companies pay.
And here’s the key. That’s how we get the money. And then
the question is how we spend it. We can spend it on childcare. We can
spend it on student loans. We can spend it on green investment, in
manufacturing right here in America.
Here’s the deal. I get why people feel discouraged. But
the bottom line is, this is a democracy. And in a democracy, we need our
budget, our numbers to align with our values.
HAYES: But, Senator…
WARREN: And our values are not that the top 0.1 percent
keeps their two cents and nobody else gets it.
HAYES: But wait a minute. But they’re Mitch McConnell’s
values. I mean, you’re not going to be elected ruler of the universe or a
monarch. I mean, let’s say Elizabeth Warren is the president of the United
WARREN: Well, say that again.
HAYES: No, like, they had – I mean, they had to scratch
and claw to get two Republican votes on a stimulus when the economy is
going through the worst crash in 70 years, they fought them tooth and nail,
they didn’t give them a single vote on the Affordable Care Act, and they
had 60 votes.
HAYES: So you’re walking in, you’ve got a website full of
plans that might pencil out and people might like, but in what universe are
those going to be passed?
WARREN: So that’s the reason that I am here today. And
it’s the reason I’ve done 90 town halls. It’s the reason that I’ve been to
20 states and Puerto Rico, and I’m going to more. Because the bottom line
is, we’ve got to build a grassroots movement across this country.
We got to do it. It’s got to be all of us. And if we do,
it doesn’t just help the person at the top. That’s how we take back the
Senate. That’s how we take back the House. That’s how we take back
governors’ offices and statehouses and city councils. We build this thing
up and down the line.
ELLIOTT: (OFF-MIKE) politicians and people who are in
power like that to keep their word. When they say that they’re going to do
something, they need to do it.
WARREN: Yes, you do. Yes.
STAPLES: And the thing is, is we need to go back where, no
offense, Senator, but people like yourself and people like Paul Ryan and
everybody else, they need to go back working for the American people,
because we’re the ones that give them their paychecks.
WARREN: I agree.
STAPLES: You know, we have policies in place where half of
the Republicans want to raise the retirement age to 68 or 69, but yet they
can retire out of Congress at 42, 45, and have health care for the rest of
ELLIOTT: People are already…
STAPLES: But I’m just saying, I mean…
HAYES: No, no, I just – I think you’re getting at a point
which is profound here, right, which is that the question is, can you go –
given what’s happened both with Donald Trump and the nature of the
structure of the American economy, and what’s happened to a place like Fort
Wayne and all across Indiana for decades, to come and say that they will
trust you in good faith when you say we’re going to bring those jobs back
or we have a plan to change life here.
WARREN: So, look, we can give up. You’re right. We can
just totally give up and say, hey, let them have it. Or what we can say is
this is the moment that we fight. I am in this fight all the way.
HAYES: I want to…
CROPPER: How do you address these small thinkers in
Congress? How are you going to get them to come to your big ideas?
WARREN: So, I’ll tell you how.
HAYES: It’s a good question.
WARREN: I’m counting you on, Susan, and I’m counting on
everybody in this room, and I’m counting on millions of people who watch
this. And what I mean by that is, yeah, it takes leadership from the White
House. It takes the willingness to wade straight into the fight.
But where it’s really going to come from is when you build
this grassroots movement, when you build this momentum, when people demand
it. When people say this is the America – I want an America that invests
in little kids. I want an America that cancels student loan debt. I want
an America that invests in manufacturing here in this country.
ELLIOTT: … men make.
WARREN: There you go.
ELLIOTT: We need a job – the same jobs that they do, we
do them just as well…
WARREN: I’m with you on this, Renee.
CROPPER: I just don’t see anyone in Congress or any of
these high positions giving up any money.
CROPPER: I just don’t see it happening.
HAYES: You’re not wrong.
WARREN: But here’s the deal. In a democracy, we’re
talking about you’re asking for two cents from 0.1 percent of the people.
The rest of us have a say in that. We set the tax laws. And if we’re
willing to get out there and fight for it, the politicians, more of them
are going to fall into line.
Remember on health care, I was in the Senate when we didn’t
have the votes to stop the Republicans from repealing health care for tens
of millions of Americans. But what happened? People from all over this
country made their voices heard.
They came to Washington. People in wheelchairs came to
Washington. People – mamas pushing the littlest lobbyists, these little
babies who had serious medical problems. They got right in the faces of
those senators. And at the end of the day, at the end of the day, it was
the people across this country who pushed and pushed and pushed. And we
got the votes, and we saved health care for tens of millions of Americans.
HAYES: Let me ask you this. I think having watched the
way these political dynamics manifest, right, it does matter whether people
are willing to pick fights or not.
HAYES: It really does, whether people want to – you say
you’re a fighter. Do you trust that every other Democrat in this primary
field is a fighter in the same way?
WARREN: I know why I’m here. I’m here because I’m a
HAYES: So that’s a no.
WARREN: Look, I’m not going to…
HAYES: It’s a serious problem, because it…
WARREN: But I’m not here – I’m not here to slam other
Democrats. I’m just telling it how I see it. This is the fight I believe
ELLIOTT: … is the issue is, once we do, you know, do
they honor their promises? Do they honor their policies that they’re going
to put in place?
BOYD: So at this point, with you and your issue with Trump
– and you believed in him and he’s backing you or whatever, how is your
vote swaying right now? Are you uneasy? Do you know? Are you going to
back her because she’s saying this? Or…
ELLIOTT: Oh, trust me. When it came to – let’s – we
won’t get into him, because, you know, he’s the first Republican I ever
voted for. And I got a lot of people to vote for him. I believed in him.
BOYD: And that was just for your job security’s sake and
that – only purpose?
ELLIOTT: Oh, no, no. It wasn’t just for the job security.
I believed he was going to make a change, period. Just like I believed in
Barack Obama when I voted for him, because I believe we needed change. You
know what I mean? Now I think it’s time for another change.
HAYES: More change.
ELLIOTT: I think it’s time to put a woman in the White
House. I think it’s time to listen to what we’re saying, because we are
out there working just as hard as men are. We are.
HAYES: I want to thank all you good folks for coming up
here. We’re going to get to some questions from more people who are in the
audience here in Fort Wayne right after this. Don’t go anywhere.
HAYES: All right. We are back here in Fort Wayne,
Indiana. I want to ask some questions of the crowd. But before I do that,
Senator Warren, what is your biggest frustration with the way that the
campaign gets covered?
WARREN: Too much like a horse race. This isn’t a horse
race. This is about the future of our country. And it’s about how we see
the direction we want to go. You know, I think every one of the things we
talk about, we call them policy, we call them budgets. They’re really
about our values.
And they’re a statement of what kind of a country we want
to be and what kind of a people we want to be. And I wish we could do more
of that in our big national conversation.
HAYES: All right. So we’re going to horse – if one of
you had a horse race question, I hope you’re reconsidering.
WARREN: That’s right.
HAYES: Right before we go to the audience. All right,
you, sir. Give me your name and tell me what your question is, if you can
stand up for me.
QUESTION: Yep. My name is Austin. And my question is…
WARREN: Hi, Austin.
QUESTION: How are you doing today? My question is,
climate change is real, and we’re got to get going on it. At GM here in
Fort Wayne is one of our largest employers. They make trucks. How do we
make sure that that factory is not negatively impacted with your policies?
WARREN: Oh, good question. Good question.
HAYES: Great question.
WARREN: So here’s how we have to think of this. We’ve got
to know what the goal is. This is what the Green New Deal is all about.
It tells us two things. It tells us that this is an emergency, and it
tells us where we’ve got to head.
And it’s a lot like for me what it was like for landing on
the moon, right? John F. Kennedy set the goal, he said I want to be on the
moon, he set a time that he wanted to do it. People looked left, looked
right, said, gee, I don’t know how we land on the moon.
But what did we do? We invested in science. We innovated
like crazy. And we counted on American workers. We do those three things
right here in America, we can not only clean up our country and clean up
our planet, we can actually build a manufacturing future for the United
States of America. And that’s good jobs right there.
HAYES: But there’s – just to follow up on that, right?
It’s a great question, right? Because, look, there’s – if they’re making
big trucks that get 14 miles a gallon, right, like that factory is either
going to have to shut down or be remade. And there’s industries like oil
extraction and natural gas that are – there’s no way to make them green,
right? I mean, there are going to be some folks that lose jobs in those
WARREN: Look, what there’s going to be is a lot of change.
But that’s how America has always flourished. We didn’t make ourselves
into a country that said, well, this works, we’re stopping right here. We
have always been a country that has innovated, that has changed.
You know what really troubles me right now is the way this
administration keeps trying to deny science across the board. Listen,
that’s not going to work.
That’s why my plan starts by increasing by tenfold the
amount of money that we put into scientific research and R&D. That’s how
we start building a future. And then we innovate around that.
But here’s the hook in it that makes it different from
where it was in the past. We don’t just say to giant corporations, you
know, like we did to Apple, you all, taxpayers, you paid for the basic
technology to develop that science, that technology that led to those fancy
phones. And then where did Apple go build them? In China.
So what this plan says is American taxpayers will make the
investment, because we believe in building a future, but then you want to
harvest that investment, you want to make big bucks on it? Great. It’s a
$23 trillion market out there. We want you to do it. But you’re going to
do it by building those plants and having those jobs right here in the
United States of America.
HAYES: Please tell me your name and your question.
QUESTION: Hi, Senator. My name is Courtney Tritch.
WARREN: Hi, Courtney.
QUESTION: Hello. When I ran for U.S. Congress in 2018…
QUESTION: Thank you – everyone wanted to know, rightly
so, how I would work across the aisle. And that’s so important. But what
I want to know is, what is the one issue or piece of legislation that you
feel so strongly about you would not compromise on it?
WARREN: Oh. So, let me put it this way. I believe in
working across the aisle when that lets us get things done. And can I do a
really short version of this? Forty million Americans have hearing loss,
but fewer than one in six actually gets a hearing aid. And the reason is
because they cost a bazillion dollars. And most people need two, and
they’re not covered by insurance, and they’re not covered by Medicaid.
OK. So what do they do? They do without. Why are they so
expensive? And the answer, it’s one more market that doesn’t work. That
is, a handful of manufacturers have control of that market and have driven
So I had an idea and a plan to say what we’re going to do
is manufacture – let anybody who wants to manufacture hearing aids,
certain safety standards, sell them across the counter in drug stores.
Think about it. You can buy glasses. You can go pay for more or you can
buy glasses in a drug store. And a lot of people get help.
I checked this out with doctors and scientists. They all
say that would work great, and it would drive the price down from thousands
of dollars to hundreds of dollars.
So I had this idea. And you know what I did? The first
person I called is a Republican. I explained the deal to him, and he said,
what? And I explained it again.
And he said that’s a fine idea. Sign me up. And I called
another Republican, he said sign me up. I called another Republican. He
said sign me up. We did this under the radar screen. Now, at one point,
the NRA came out in opposition.
I kid you not.
HAYES: It’s true.
WARREN: But the point is, we got it through, and next
year, people are going to be able to buy hearing aids over the counter,
across the aisle.
So now, can I finish Courtney’s question, though?
WARREN: I do want to say on this, though, Courtney – and
I was glad to do that. We made some changes in the bill. But when we’re
talking about things like health care coverage, I’m not going to compromise
when people say I want to take away health care coverage from 30 million
people, because I’ll tell you what, we’ll just take it away from 15
million, and that’s going to be OK.
Health care is a basic human right. We fight for basic
So I’m in all the way. Thank you, Courtney. Thank you.
HAYES: So, Senator, I want to introduce you – this is TJ
HAYES: Yes. He worked at the Carrier plant. And there
was coverage of him on NBC asking Donald Trump to save the jobs at Carrier.
That was what prompted Donald Trump to tweet about it and come down.
You’re a Trump voter. I think you’re still inclined.
QUESTION: No, I didn’t vote for Trump.
HAYES: Oh, you’re not. OK.
QUESTION: No, no, no.
HAYES: What is the – are you – what would you like to
ask the senator?
QUESTION: Well, hi.
WARREN: Hi, TJ.
QUESTION: I am TJ. I’m from Indianapolis. I worked at
Carrier. I still do. I’m a 17-year employee. Thankfully, my job was
saved. I’m also with the United Steelworkers Union Local 1999.
WARREN: Go Steelworkers.
QUESTION: So my question to you is, I really don’t know
much of your history with labor and organized labor. So what can we expect
to see your support of organized labor and how we can get that brought back
up in this country?
WARREN: OK. So let me do this two ways. The first is,
you know, I told you about all three of my brothers, military, first one
was career. Second one came back and worked construction. And he got a
good union job, a good union job that let him support a family and put
three kids through school, and he has a pension today because he had a good
union job. We want to have good jobs in America, then we need stronger
The second is, I’ll do – just a little bit on the policy
side, and that is to say we got a real problem in this country, and that’s
a handful of giant corporations that have so much power, they just roll
wherever they want to roll. They roll over their employees. They roll
over their customers. They roll over their communities.
We need structural change. And the way we get structural
change is we need more power back in the hands of employees. That means
make it easier to join a union and give unions more power when they’re in
Unions built America’s middle class. Unions will rebuild
America’s middle class.
HAYES: Thank you so much, TJ. There is a question over
here I want to get to on something that we cover on the show sometimes.
Say your name and your question.
QUESTION: Hi, Senator. My name is Erin.
WARREN: Hi, Erin.
QUESTION: How are you?
WARREN: I’m good. How about you?
QUESTION: My question for you is, do you believe still
that impeachment is the right path forward? And why or why not?
WARREN: Yes, I do.
And understand this, Erin. I didn’t decide to run for
president so that I could get into a big debate over impeachment. I
decided to run because let’s go to beat that guy, right, straight-up.
But the deal is, the Mueller report came out, and the
afternoon it came out, I sat down and started reading it. And I read it
all afternoon. And I read it all night. I read it into the next morning,
all 448 pages.
I got to the end, and there were three things that were
just, man, there’s no avoiding them. Part one, a hostile foreign
government attacked our 2016 elections for the purpose of getting Donald
Trump elected. Part two, then-candidate Donald Trump welcomed that help.
And part three, when the federal government tried to investigate part one
and part two, Donald Trump as president delayed, deflected, moved, fired,
and did everything he could to obstruct justice.
If he were any other person in the United States, based on
what’s documented in that report, he would be carried out in handcuffs.
Now, I took an oath of office not to Donald Trump, not to
any president. I took an oath of office to the Constitution of the United
States of America. And that Constitution says no one is above the law,
including the president of the United States.
I get that this is politically tough. I get it. But some
things are bigger than politics, and this matters for our democracy, not
just now, but under the next president and the next president and the next
president. We have a constitutional responsibility here, and that’s to
start this impeachment proceedings.
HAYES: Let me ask you.
I want to ask you a final question here. We got about a
WARREN: Sure. OK.
HAYES: I hear this from people. They say, I like
HAYES: She seems smart. She’s got a lot of ideas. But I
just don’t know. I feel like Trump would beat her. I feel like he just
doesn’t work. I don’t know, are people going to vote for – what do you
say to people that say I like you on the substance, but I’m worried about
your electability as the nominee for the Democratic Party?
WARREN: You know, I remember when people said Barack Obama
couldn’t be elected. I remember when people said Donald Trump couldn’t be
HAYES: That’s also true.
WARREN: And here we are. Elections are about getting in
there and fighting for it and making clear to the American people what you
stand for. I got in this race because an America that keeps working better
and better and better for a thinner and thinner slice at the top just isn’t
going to work. We can’t sustain this.
I am in this fight to make this America, to make our
government in Washington work for everyone else. That’s my job. That’s
why I’m here.
HAYES: Senator Elizabeth warren. I want to thank all the
folks here in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Thank you, Senator. Thank you,
Senator, very much.
To our wonderful hosts here, to all the people in Fort
Wayne, Indiana, you did an amazing job hosting us. Thank you very much.
That does it for “All In” this evening. “The Rachel Maddow Show” starts
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
Copyright 2019 ASC Services II Media, LLC. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>
Copyright 2019 ASC Services II Media, LLC. All materials herein are
protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced,
distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the
prior written permission of ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter
or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the