PoliticsNation with Al Sharpton, Transcript 5/1/2016

Guests:
Terry McAuliffe; Adolfo Franco; Dana Milbank; April Ryan
Transcript:

Show: POLITICS NATION
Date: May 1, 2016
Guest: Terry McAuliffe; Adolfo Franco; Dana Milbank; April Ryan

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Is this dinner too tacky for
the Donald? Is he at home eating a Trump steak, tweeting out insults to
Angela Merkel?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Obama`s big night of political lunch lines.

OBAMA: They say Donald lacks the foreign policy experience to be
president. But in fairness, he has spent years meeting with leaders from
around the world, Miss Sweden, Miss Argentina (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Also, what does Bernie Sanders want? And what to
expect from a general election brawl between Hillary Clinton and Donald
Trump.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think the only card she has is
the woman`s card.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Then deal me in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We talk to Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe.

All that, plus a Selma veteran tackling the new fight over voting rights.

From Washington, D.C., this is “Politics Nation” with Al Sharpton.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

REV. AL SHARPTON, MSNBC HOST: Good morning. I`m Al Sharpton. Live this
morning from Washington, D.C.

Just a few miles from here last night, President Obama gave his final roast
at the White House Correspondents Dinner. And no one was safe, not even
the Democrats.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: We`ve got the bright new face of the Democratic Party here tonight,
Mr. Bernie Sanders.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: There he is, Bernie.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: Bernie, you look like a million bucks or to put in terms you`ll
understand, you look like 37,000 donations of $27 each.

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: How much I admire Hillary`s toughness, her smarts, her policy
chops, her experience. You have got to admit it though, Hillary trying to
appeal to young voter is a little bit like your relative who just signed up
for Facebook. Dear America, did you get my poke? Is it appearing on your
wall? I`m not sure I`m using this right. Love, Aunt Hillary.

(LAUGHTER)

SHARPTON: But the president saved his harshest attacks for the
Republicans.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: Some candidates aren`t polling high enough to qualify for their own
joke tonight. Ted had a tough week. He went to Indiana, Hoosier country,
stood on a basketball court and called the hoop a basketball ring.

You know I`ve got to talk about Trump, although I am hurt he`s not here
tonight. We had so much fun the last time. And it is surprising, you`ve
got a roomful of reporters, celebrities, cameras and he says no. Is this
dinner too tacky for the Donald? What could he possibly be doing instead?
Is he at home eating a Trump steak?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: And he wasn`t done with the Donald yet.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: They say Donald lacks the foreign policy experience to be
president. But in fairness, he has spent years meeting with leaders around
the world Miss Sweden, Miss Argentina, Miss (INAUDIBLE) and there`s one
area where Donald`s experience could be invaluable and that`s closing
Guantanamo because Trump knows a thing or two about running water front
properties into the ground.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Joining me now, April Ryan, White House correspondent and
Washington bureau chief for American urban radio networks, “Washington
Post” political columnist Dana Milbank and former John McCain adviser,
Adolfo Franco.

Thanks for being here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good to be with you, Reverend.

SHARPTON: So April, did the president once again set the blueprint on how
to tackle Donald Trump?

APRIL RYAN, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORK: Yes, I think he did. He had to
deal with the topics of the day, even if it was the Trump steak. He dealt
with, you know, Donald Trump himself, the lack of him being there. It`s
been so poignant that he was there. Every year we watched Donald Trump.
The first year Donald Trump was very angry. The second year he knew how to
play to the camera. I was sitting right next to the next table was Eric
Trump and I can`t laying back and watching to see how Eric played it.

SHARPTON: Because I saw Eric last there –.

RYAN: He laughed. He laughed at the president`s jokes. And there was one
point when the president first came out, he kind of was let`s see where
we`re going and laid back and started laughing. But I think Donald Trump
is fair game like every other presidential candidate and you have to deal
with him.

SHARPTON: Dana, you know, the president also, he had a little fun with the
rift in the Republican Party when it comes to the presidential race.
Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: On the Republican side, things are a little more, how shall we say
this – a little more lose. Just look at the confusion over the
invitations to tonight`s dinner. Guests were asked to check whether they
wanted steak or fish. But instead a whole bunch of you wrote in Paul Ryan.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: I mean, all jokes aside, the Republicans are seemingly
struggling to get on board with having to support Trump and some seem to be
coming kicking and screaming. I`m saying this morning`s “New York Times”
saying that very notable names say no, don`t put me on the ticket. I mean,
they are going to have to come to terms with this.

DANA MILBANK, COLUMNIST, WASHINGTON POST: Yes. And it was, you know, fish
in a barrel for the president last night, making fun of this. In general
it`s been because the Republican race has been such a parody. It`s hard to
not make fun of it. How can you say something more absurd than what is
occur actually occurring? That`s why I actually thought the president, he
is funny talking about Donald Trump. I don`t think that`s the blue print
for Democrat. I think there has to be more outrage.

SHARPTON: Right.

MILBANK: The dinner was not the place for outrage.

RYAN: But I think sometimes Donald Trump is a caricature of himself. And
for the Democrats, they can play it. I do believe that.

MILBANK: Yes. That`s a piece, that`s an element of it. It`s going to be
exquisite watching Republicans now that it seems inevitable for Trump –

(CROSSTALK)

SHARPTON: Let me say this, Adolf, we are seeing though someone as notable
as George Will, writing a column saying that if Trump is the nominee and it
appears he will be, the Republicans should defeat him in all 50 states.
This is George Will now.

ADOLFO FRANCO, FORMER JOHN MCCAIN ADVISER: This is George will. But I
think as the convention draws more closely and I think after Tuesday
frankly, Reverend, I think this will be functionally over if Trump actually
wins –

SHARPTON: In Indiana.

FRANCO: In Indiana. But I really believe that the nominee and the
alternatives are going to be such you`re seeing the coalescing. You think
of three more house endorsements this week. And I don`t believe that the
Republican Party is going to become fractured.

About last night`s dinner, though, if I could very well, my biggest
observation, because this is the prom for nerds as we all know.

RYAN: No. Don`t call it that, please it`s the White House Correspondents
association dinner. It is not the nerd prom.

FRANCO: I think it is. I don`t think the rest of the country was really
watching this. But I will tell you this from the dinner. What I thought
is too bad the president doesn`t behave more like this more frequently. I
think he delivered very well. I think the president`s demeanor and the
president`s style is far better than he normally does. So I think this is
the Barack Obama people were hoping for we`re seeing seven or eight years
ago with all due respect. I do not believe the rest of the country was
watching –

SHARPTON: We could debate that about Barack Obama but the fact is he won
re-election so I think the public bought it. And talking about demeanor, I
think you and I both took exception to George Will using the n word in
referring to the president. I thought it was very inappropriate.

FRANCO: I think it was simply unfunny, really.

SHARPTON: Well, sadly, you know, funny. One think it`s another to be
offensive, April.

RYAN: Yes, you know, the whole – and I`m going to say it, there was
several things, he was teeing up for you my – word and I want to say that
he is. He said it. He was teeing up for it. He first came out saying
Negro nation then he said thugs which is all is now equated to the n-word.
Then he went to old term used that was used hate and anger, jiggaboo (ph).
OK. Then it came - that, first of all, you have to look at this. It`s a
historic night. That`s the last word for this the last correspondents
association –

SHARPTON: For first black president. I thought it was –

RYAN: Then on top of that, historically, historically – I`m one of three
African-Americans in the 102-year history of that dinner to ever serve on
the board for us to be in the room and then to set us back that way. The
history of that word –

SHARPTON: I had to bring that up. It goes, Dana, with another piece
talking about this morning`s Times where they talk about Trump and bringing
out openly the problem of racism that is still alive in this country.

MILBANK: He`s done a good job and a very bad way of bringing out racism in
this country. And now, we see him pivoting to try to bring out the latent
sexism to try to boost the white male working class turnout in November.
You see this going on.

I think you`re being quite optimistic about, you know, how Republicans will
get in line because I mean, certainly a large number of people who don`t
have, you know, racist or bigoted motivations will say he`s the guy and
we`ll get in line here. A lot of other people, even if this isn`t a third
party alternative, I have to say, you know, I have a moral problem with
this. This is beyond politics.

SHARPTON: Republicans or Democrats.

FRANCO: Well, obviously, we have heard this and I don`t disagree with
this. But we all been around here long enough. When power or the prospect
of power and coalescing of it around a nominee who could become president
of the United States after all if he is the nominee, he has a chance to
become president of the United States, however were difficult role that
might be. That just brings people around –

SHARPTON: But don`t you fear, Adolfo, that with the kind of racism and sex
or racism as certainly been some of the pillars of his campaign, that it
will risk Senate seats and house seats?

FRANCO: There is no question. I think, in our party, I think the
trepidation is absolutely it was going to happen down ballot. It isn`t
just – there`s no question about that. However, I am seeing and there are
respectable people coming along, people like Giuliani, who is not exactly a

SHARPTON: Well, we can debate that. Let me take my break and we`ll be
back with the whole panel later in the show. Lots more ahead. Let`s go
forward.

Ahead, one on one with Terry McAuliffe, former DNC chair and now Virginia
governor. What he has to say about the fight within the party.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Can the Democratic Party get united in time for what could be a
brutal general election match-up against Donald Trump? It`s been a rough
primary between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders and Trump says he`s been
taking notes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Bernie Sanders says a message that`s interesting, I`m going to be
taking a lot of the things that Bernie said and using them. I can re-read
some of his features. I can get some very good material. That she has got
bad judgment. When he said bad judgment, I said sound bite.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: But this past week, Sanders appeared to be begin shifting from
attacks on Clinton to attacks on the Democratic Party.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The Democratic Party up
to now has not been clear about which side they are on. Are we on the side
of working people or big money interests? The Democratic Party has turned
its back on many of those states.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Can Democrats come together in a year they face not just a
political challenge but also a challenge to their right to vote itself.

Joining me now is Virginia`s Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe who just
made a big move in the fight for voting rights.

Thanks for joining me, governor.

GOV. TERRY MCAULIFFE (D), VIRGINIA: Reverend, good to be with you.

SHARPTON: Now, we will get to that voting order in a moment but let`s
start with Democratic politics. You`re a Clinton supporter. How do you
feel about the things sander has said about her and the Democratic Party?

MCAULIFFE: Well, if you remember, Reverend, I mean, eight years ago, you
know, I chaired Hillary`s campaign for president. We had a rough primary
season. We went all the way, as you know to the first week in June,
Hillary actually ended up winning one of the last primary contests. It was
very hotly contested. I would make the argument. I think it is even
rougher than what we`re going through today. And listen. We all came
together. And once this process is completed, we are going to unify.

In 2004, when I was national chairman, working with you and other
candidates, we wanted to make sure it was inclusive for everybody. That`s
the process. I`m excited about in general election.

SHARPTON: Now, you mentioned eight years ago with then senator Obama and
Senator Clinton. And both Hillary Clinton and President Obama have tried
to sound conciliatory towards Sanders and his supporters. Let me play this
to you, governor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: You know, you`ve got to give Bernie Sanders, for example, credit.
Building on the work I did, smaller donations grass roots donors.

CLINTON: I applaud senator Sanders and his millions of supporters for
challenging us to get unaccountable money out of our politics.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: What kind of concessions will Sanders and his supporters need to
come into the fold and support Mrs. Clinton assuming she is the nominee if
that`s where we`re heading?

MCAULIFFE: We clearly assume she is the nominee. I mean, she`s got the
delegates. She and has many more, I think, couple hundred more at this
stage than senator Obama had eight years ago. So she is going to be the
nominee. The process is going to go forward. Senator Sanders and his team
and his supporters are going to come to us with ideas and thoughts and
things we ought to include.

This election is going to be defining moment for our country. Hillary is
going to layout out her message. I`m very confident we are going to win.
She won the Virginia primary by 29 points. She is going to win Virginia in
the general election. With a positive message and that message will help
to be crafted by the some of the great ideas as Senator Sanders had.

SHARPTON: Now, on that point, I want to get o to voting rights, but on
that point, Pennsylvania voters, for example, in this year`s primaries,
Democrats 69 percent say it energized their party. Republicans say 58
percent say it divided the party. Are concerns about the nastiness in the
primaries overblown, governor?

MCAULIFFE: Totally overblown. It`s going to happen because, obviously,
the issues we care about and senator Sanders supporters and Secretary
Clinton`s very common themes on a lot of different issues, don`t agree on
everything. Nobody agrees on everything. But I will tell you this A
unifying force will be Donald Trump as the nominee of the Republican Party.
That will be the greatest unifier for our party.

SHARPTON: You made a very bold historic step in my opinion. And
Republicans in Virginia slammed your executive order restoring voting
rights for 206,000 ex-felons who have served their time. Speaker Bill
Howell said and I`m quoting him, “he is changing the rules in the middle of
2016 election to ensure Hillary Clinton`s victory,” end of quote. But
weren`t these rules put in place to manipulate elections in the first
place, governor?

MCAULIFFE: They were in 1902. We had obviously literacy tests, we had the
poll tax, disenfranchisement of felony convicts. So that happened in 1902.
What we were able to do is to erase about 115 years what had been very bad
history in our state. I don`t understand the Republicans. You know what,
their idea of democracy is fewer people voting. I come from the other
side. I want as many people to vote as possible.

Since I`ve been governor, I`ve had to veto bill after bill from the
Republican legislature where they have tried to take rights away from
people`s ability to vote. I don`t understand the Republican Party in
Virginia. The leadership wants fewer to vote. They want to disenfranchise
voters. I don`t. Why give up on any voters. I told them to quit
complaining. These 206 thousand voters go out and talk to them. They are
not automatically going to register Democratic voters to go out and say I`m
going to vote for Democratic candidate. Go out and try to earn their vote.

SHARPTON: And again, these are people that have already done their time
and have served whatever their obligations are to the criminal justice
system.

MCAULIFFE: When someone comes up to you and tells you their life story, it
emboldened me. I was tired of hearing fathers tell their sons and
daughters on Election Day, what they would drive down to the polling booth,
try to sneak in and get one of those “I Voted” sticker. Or they drive down
the booth and come back and say I votes. They didn`t vote because they
weren`t allowed to vote. They were embarrassed to tell their children they
didn`t have the right to vote.

Why do we live in society like this? You served your time determine by a
judge and jury. I want you back in society. I want you feeling good about
yourself. Let`s embolden people, redemption.

You now, second chances matter in this nation and we in Virginia as I say
are joining 40 other states. But it is sad to see and I tell the
Republicans be very careful of your rhetoric and what you`re saying about
this. It is sad to see what the Republican Party in Virginia has done.
Once again, stepping out to try and deny people their ability to go out and
vote.

Let`s let everybody come and vote. Let`s earn their vote, if you got a
good message, then they should vote for you. But by demonizing them,
you`re not going to get their vote.

SHARPTON: Governor Terry McAuliffe, thank you so much for your time today.

MCAULIFFE: Thank you, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Next, a judge upholds North Carolina`s voter I.D. law,
sparking an appeal in the courts. And an objection in the politics nation
gotcha.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Now to the fight over voting rights, a federal judge this past
week upheld North Carolina`s controversial voter I.D. law.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ruled while North Carolina had a sort of racial
history, the plaintiffs did not show that the law hamper the ability of
minority voters to exercise political power.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Judge Thomas Schrader (ph) wrote quote “there is significant
shameful past discrimination in North Carolina`s recent history. However,
certainly for the last quarter century, there is little official
discrimination to consider.”

Oh, really? No official discrimination. Like the law itself, which
creates a shorter early voter period. In 2012, 70 percent of the state`s
black voters use early voting. No official discrimination? Like ending
same day registration.

In 2012 black voters used the tool at nearly twice the rate of white
voters. No official discrimination? Like imposing photo I.D.,
disproportionately impacting black and Latino voters. We`ll have more on
this ahead. But first, Judge Sharpton has a ruling for Judge Schrader
(ph), nice try but we`ve got you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: We are back with more on that crucial fight for voter rights in
North Carolina. Critics are already appealing the ruling. Hoping it will
be off the books in time for November. One of the fiercest critics is a
North Carolina lawmaker who marched from Selma with Dr. Martin Luther King.

Last year on the 50th anniversary of the march, Representative Mickey
Michaux took to the statehouse floor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. MICKEY MICHAUX (D), DURHAM COUNTY: Here, now, I`m finding that I have
to fight the same fight I fought 50 years when you look at disenfranchised,
when you look to suppress, then think about the people who died for that
right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Joining me now is Representative Mickey Michaux. He testified
against the voter ID law. Joining him is Allison Riggs, attorney for the
Southern Coalition for social justice which is challenging the law in
court. Thank you both for being here.

ALLISON RIGGS, ATTORNEY, SOUTHERN COALITION FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE: Thank you
for having us.

SHARPTON: Representative Michaux, those were powerful words about the
franchise. What was the reaction to the judge upholding the rule in your
state?

MICHAUX: I was not surprised at the judge ruling. I figured that it was
going to come out, particularly since he held out the portion of the voting
– of the I.D. at the time that – at the time the trial started. If you
remember he only – we had the trial on one phase and then he took the
voter I.D. thing at the later day. And I figured that he was going to do
that. And but I mean, he wrote this 487 page novel that is just hard to
fathom.

SHARPTON: Alison, where does the legal fight in North Carolina stand now?

RIGGS: We`re encouraged because it`s moving quickly. The fourth circuit
court of appeals the next step in the appeals process just yesterday put us
on a very expedited review. This is the court that struck down Judge
Schrader`s ruling on the preliminary injunction. We`re going to be briefed
by the end of June, hopefully argued in July and we`ll – we`re hopeful
we`ll have this fixed in time for the November 2016 election.

SHARPTON: Now, Representative Michaux, how do you respond when the judge
says there`s no official discrimination in North Carolina in the last 25
years?

MICHAUX: Well, I think he`s a bit out much touch with what reality is,
particularly in North Carolina. One of the things that we tried to stress
was the fact that why did they have to go in and do this? We always
thought that everybody wanted people to turn out to vote, that you had a
big crowd. But here the legislation that was passed puts a damper on that.
It suppresses the vote and nobody could give us any good reason. And we
thought that that was certainly should have been, you know, foremost in the
judge`s mind, but evidently it wasn`t. He thinks, you know, that things
are all right like a lot of people think things are all right. But we are
still having to fight the same battles.

SHARPTON: Now Allison, many of us have been raising questions and seeking
to deal with these voting laws that are around the country and what it has
in many ways imped a lot of people from voting. And President Obama won
North Carolina but I only won by one percent. Why is North Carolina`s laws
in your opinion particularly more egregious than others?

RIGGS: The scope of North Carolina`s laws are the problem. I mean there
are problematic individually but this is not just a voter I.D. law or just
a cut to early voting. In fact, what this law does is attack every avenue
of participation that voters of color availed themselves of in 2008. And
so there`s a very obvious attack to restrict participation amongst those
voters and the way the – all of the changes – I mean this is a monster
election law. The way they all interact with each other, creates an
election system that`s very hard to navigate.

SHARPTON: Now, Representative Michaux, one of the things that is alarming
to me is that it is a solution looking for a problem when you deal with
voter I.D. around the country, these new laws in certain states, rather
than a problem in need of a solution. But let`s take North Carolina, for
example. Because when we look at the facts, in the last presidential
cycle, there was just 121 allegations of fraud. Out of nearly seven
million, seven million votes cast. That`s a fraud rate of 0.00174 percent.
I mean, what`s your response to Republicans in the state warning about
voter fraud?

MICHAUX: Well, one thing you have to remember, you had those 121
allegations but you didn`t have any prove of any of those allegations at
all. So your percentage drops even lower than what you just gave.

Like I said before, we don`t know what they were thinking about or how they
were thinking about we`ve always felt that everybody, you know, wanted
everybody to turn out and vote. But it`s just a puzzle actually to all of
us who had been involved in this whole thing. I told them they could take
that piece of abomination and consign to the streets of hell and lay there
forever. And that was the way I felt about it.

And you know, Reverend Sharpton, the other thing is that people are playing
on the fact that there was a larger voter turnout in 2014 of African-
Americans then there was no loss – there was no suppression. What they
don`t understand is that we will not be intimidated. We will do everything
possible to get people who into office who will take these things and
backtrack the whole situation. If you had put a poll tax out there we
would have scraped together to get enough money to get enough people to the
polls to put people in office who would overturn all of this. All it is a
backlash and that can`t be really a valid excuse for saying we need voter
I.D.

SHARPTON: Representative Mikey Michaux and Allison Riggs, thanks for your
time this morning.

MICHAUX: Thank you.

RIGGS: Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Coming up, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump kick start
potential general election attacks, our panel weighs in.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I think the only card she has is the women`s card. She has got
nothing else going. And frankly, if Hillary Clinton were a man, I don`t
think she would get five percent of the vote.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Mr. Trump accused me of
playing the quote, “woman card.” Well, if fighting for women`s health care
and paid family leave and equal pay is playing the woman card, then deal me
in!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: This week we got a potential preview of this year`s general
election. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump attacking each other on
everything, from money to Benghazi.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Instead of taking charge that night, Hillary Clinton decided to go
home and sleep.

CLINTON: Donald Trump says wages are too high in America. And I have said
come out of those towers name for yourself and actually talk and listen to
people.

TRUMP: As far as New York, they are not real New Yorkers because they
didn`t come from New York.

CLINTON: Those insults, the kind of demagoguery that we are seeing from
him, you have to ask yourself, what really is at stake in this election?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: And now, Trump is hinting that he might bring up Monica Lewinsky
again. Trump tweeted that Hillary Clinton is one of the all-time great
enablers. Is this a preview of what`s to come?

Let`s bring back our panel, April Ryan, Dana Milbank and Adolfo Franco.

Dana, how will Clinton respond when Trump makes these personal attacks?

MILBANK: Well, I think the way she has been responding is effective. I
think the most important thing is look, he is going to label her as crooked
Hillary. He has already said that`s what`s he`s going to do, like little
Marco, low energy Jeb. So it is going to be crooked Hillary. I think the
Democrats need a label for Donald. I think it should be dangerous Donald
because you don`t want this guy`s fingers on the nuclear button. So I
think the best defense is a strong offense there. It does appear that, you
know, Trump is going to try to run this., you know He ran a primary
campaign based largely on sort of the white grievances and now it`s going
to be male grievances. So bringing out the white male voters –.

SHARPTON: But April, does secretary Clinton take the high road? Does she
go aggressively in offense like Dana is saying and how far is too far, I
mean? And how does she energize her vote doing this?

RYAN: This is a whole interesting topic. I was there – we were there
during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. It`s a fact. It happened. It`s over.
And let me tell you something. Hillary Clinton found her strength in that
moment because she stayed. A lot of women would have left. I`m not saying
that you should stay or you should go, that`s not the issue. If she would
have left President Clinton at that time she would not have become – would
not have kept the (INAUDIBLE) as being a first lady. She would lost but
she stepped up. The nation watched her strength in a moment of weakness
and hurt and pain. She left the White House to become senator of New York.
Then ran for president and then she became secretary of state. She has
embraced it. And I`m going to tell you something, Donald Trump likes to
take the gloves off. He plays dirty. He hits below the belt. But that`s
one of the reasons you don`t see a lot of congressional leaders campaigning
with him for office.

SHARPTON: Let me go to that, Adolfo, because when you look at the polls,
2016, women voters, 71 percent disapprove of Donald Trump, 51 percent
approve of Hillary Clinton according to the George Washington university
poll done very recently. Now, that`s a huge gender gap. And isn`t Trump`s
rhetoric helping to continue to move this trend that way?

FRANCO: Well, but these same statistics were used throughout the
Republican race. We were all saying if you push the rewind button on these
programs, six or seven or eight months ago that no one believed Donald
Trump would ever be the nominee. He had crossed the line. He had attacked
every single Republican and ethnic group. And the fact of the matter is
his popularity only increased.

I think frankly, labeling her as crooked Hillary is probably going to
stick. I think it`s going to underscore the email scandals and her own
weaknesses. It has played very well and with the Republican electorate so
far and I think it possibly will continue to play very well. I think she
has a lot of weaknesses. With all due respect, April, I think it`s a lot
to have people leave the position of first lady. I think there was some
vested interest in herself personally. A lot of people believe –

RYAN: She was a wife of a man who publicly cheated on her.

FRANCO: Yes. And a lot of people believe their marriage has been an
arrangement for a long period of time.

RYAN: We can`t – we can`t talk about anyone`s marriage.

FRANCO: That`s the comments that have been made.

RYAN: That`s up for the perception of the American people.

SHARPTON: Let`s stay on the election. We`ll deal with the –

RYAN: It`s been put on the table though.

SHARPTON: When you look at this from a general election, because Adolfo
says that it`s done well with Republicans. But in a general election, we
have heard all these emails for a while now. We dealt with Monica Lewinsky
for years. Is the public really going to respond the way Republican voters
did in a general election?

RYAN: Trust worthiness on both sides.

FRANCO: On her side though –

RYAN: I hear you but on both sides. A lot of people I`m hearing from,
it`s like choosing between the lesser of two evils, OK. And so now, when
it comes to general election, this is dumping on a woman. He has to be
very careful how he dumps on a woman. And women do matter in this - women
are the number one electorate in this country. And for him to – he has to
be very careful how he attacks her. And so he`s got – this does play in a
general election. It can play for her or it can play against her and it
can be for him or against him.

SHARPTON: And it`s also a matter of styles, Dana, because when you look at
the fact that they obviously have different styles on the trail, let me
show you what I`m talking about.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: In Los Angeles, homicides are up 10.2 percent, rapes are up 8.6
percent and aggravated assault is up 27.5 percent. What the hell is
happening? We`re going to build that wall, folks.

CLINTON: Imagine a tomorrow where hard work is honored and streets are
safe and communities are strong. And where love Trumps hate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Now, I`m going back to your point at the top of this segment.
Love Trumps hate. Love Trumps hate. Is that the message for this year? I
mean, are there too many angry voters to use love as your message?

MILBANK: That`s a piece of it. But I just think, you know, sanity Trumps
Trump is much more of the message. It`s not like Hillary Clinton is all
about hope and optimism. She`s definitely a more affirmative candidate to
his negativity. I don`t think it`s fair to say that Trump succeed in the
primaries, he is – if not more unpopular now than he was before. He was
able to carve up the Republican electorate. He`s got about 36, 37 percent
of it. The thing is he is the most unpopular major party nomination.

SHARPTON: I`ll have to leave it there.

I`ll have to leave it there. Adolfo and April and Dana, thanks for your
time this morning.

Sanity Trumps Trump. You heard it here first.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ll be right back with more “Politics Nation” with Al
Sharpton.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: With that I just have two more words to say, Obama out.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: President Obama literally dropping the mic last night at his
final White House Correspondents dinner. He joked that the first lady is
eager to leave.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: You might have heard that someone jumped the White House fence last
week but I have to give secret service credit, they found Michelle and
brought her back. She`s safe back at home now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: And he also joked about what he would be doing after the White
House.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: If this material works well, I`m going to use it at Goldman Sachs
next year. Earn me some serious Tubman`s.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: But in reality the president is focused on his legacy laying out
how he saved the economy in a “New York Times” magazine cover story this
morning.

Joining me now is MSNBC`s Joy Reid who just officially was named as weekend
host here on MSNBC.

Thanks for being here, Joy.

JOY ANN REID, MSNBC NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thank you, Rev.

SHARPTON: So he still has nine months in office. But how is he already
starting to shape his historic place and his views in history and legacy?

REID: Well, you know, I think first of all the president obviously very
proud of the affordability care act and taking any opportunity he can to
tout that. And look. He is going into his final year in the 50s in terms
of approval rating. That`s a very good place to be and it also sets him up
to have his preferred successor take over historically a president with
those sort of robust approval ratings is in a good position to have the
next president be from the same party. So I think what you saw last night
was a confident president, ridiculing the likely Republican nominee,
mercilessly. And I think feeling very confident going into his final nine
months, six, seven, eight months.

SHARPTON: Now, it also is that a lot of people feel he has not gotten the
credit that he deserves for what he did for the economy, the affordable
care act, that a lot of Americans have seen positive things done. His poll
numbers have gone much higher. But a lot of the pundits and critics have
not really given him credit, including in the African-American community
for things he`s done.

REID: No. It`s interesting because you have, you know, the met tricks of
the economy are all very positive. I mean, he has done a good job of
turning around what was an economy that was cratering when he took office.
The metrics on the economy look good. When you look whether it is on the
left or the right, you still have people with a lot of but dot, dot, dot,
right, when it comes to President Obama.

SHARPTON: How much is that concrete? How much is that an industry if you
know you get a little attention if you kind of like attack him, making
noise?

REID: I think some of it is over raw (ph) expectations, right. You heard
last night lots of joke about him not closing Guantanamo. So they are
picking on the things that he can get done.

SHARPTON: Well, and I was offended to Larry Wilmore (ph) just referring to
him as the n word. I had got to say that again because I just thought that
was so inappropriate, the state, the president. I`m against n word anyway
but I just thought that was a bit much.

REID: Well, I think overall people who have looked at this president as
having been racialized - I mean, obviously electing first black president
there were going to be racial aspects that we are not going to be
avoidable. But I think that generally feel that he is not credited enough
tore saving the economy, not credited enough for saving Detroit, not
credited enough for the success of the economy under his watch.

SHARPTON: Against a headwind, against obstructionists and look where the
economy was and other things when he came into office.

REID: Well, eventually, the obstructionist piece, you know, he played with
it last night and talked about the fact that will now the Republicans are
going stop taking phone calls and listening to him. That`s pretty much
been his presidency from day one.

SHARPTON: All right, Joy Reid, thanks. And be sure to watch Joy Saturdays
and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to noon right here at MSNBC.

That does it for me. Thanks for watching and keep the conversation going.
Like us at facebook.com/politicsnation and follow us on twitter at
politicsnation.

I`ll see you back here next Sunday.

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

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