Politics Nation with Al Sharpton, Transcript, 6/19/2016

Guests:
Glozell Green; Tara Dowdell; Annie Karni; Matt Welch; Ben Cardin
Transcript:

Show: POLITICS NATION
Date: June 19, 2016
Guest: Glozell Green; Tara Dowdell; Annie Karni; Matt Welch; Ben Cardin

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Trump in trouble, sinking in the polls and lashing out
at GOP leaders.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Just be quiet. Let me just do
it by myself. I will do very well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are Republicans really now pinning their hopes on
George W. Bush?

Also, the fight for gun control after Orlando, are we at a turning point?

Plus our new special series on the injustice of our prison system.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Twenty years, four months, four days, and one hour is
how much time I did.

One man`s journey from a life sentence to redemption.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe in your ability to prove the doubtful wrong,
sincerely, Barack Obama.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All that, plus the return of the rights. Obama
derangement syndrome and a visit from You Tube star, Glozell Green.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: First, I have to ask you, is you OK?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I is OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get ready for a few surprises.

From Rockefeller center in New York, this is “Politics Nation” with Al
Sharpton.

REV. AL SHARPTON, MSNBC HOST: Good morning. I`m Al Sharpton.

We start this morning with Donald Trump. All alone and painting himself
into a corner. He has done it to himself, most recently his response to
the Orlando massacre and now the biggest names in the party are leaving
Trump on an island.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R), MAJORITY LEADER: Yes, I`m not going to be
commenting on the presidential comment today.

REP. PAUL RYAN (R), HOUSE SPEAKER: I`m not spending my time about
commenting about the go – the ups and downs and in between by the
comments.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Trump`s relationship with the RNC is reportedly getting more
quote “sour.” Republicans up for reelection are now looking to campaign
with former President Bush instead of Trump and rather than patching things
up, Trump is telling GO Pleaders to shut up.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: The Republicans, honestly, folks, our leaders have to get tougher
and be quiet. Just please be quiet. Don`t talk. Please be quiet. They
are the leaders because they have to get tougher. They have to get
sharper. They have to get smarter. We have to have Republicans stick
together or let me do it by myself. I`ll do well.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Republicans might be happy to keep their distance given Trump`s
plummeting numbers against Hillary Clinton. An NBC poll shows that more
voters hold positive views of Clinton a five-point edge. A Bloomberg poll
gives her a 12-point favorability advantage. “The Washington Post” has her
14 points ahead on favorability. And Clinton is already looking to
increase her advantage. She is out with her first TV ads of the general
election across eight battle ground states.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Who we are as a nation.

TRUMP: I would like to punch him in the face, I tell you.

CLINTON: Do we help each other?

TRUMP: Knock the crap out of him, seriously.

CLINTON: Do we respect each other?

TRUMP: I don`t know what I said. I don`t remember.

CLINTON: Do we stand together?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Let`s bring in our panel. Democratic strategist Tara Dowdell
who knew a different side of Trump as a contestant on “the Apprentice” and
Annie Karni, political reporter who has been covering the Clinton campaign
and Matt Welch, editor at large of “Reason magazine.” Thank you all for
being here.

Matt, have Republican leaders finally dropped their hopes that Trump will
change?

MATT WELCH, EDITOR AT LARGE, REASON MAGAZINE: Oh my God, yes. I mean, the
idea that he was – that a 70-year-old man was about to change his spots
and pivot hard in the general election, I think they knew was fantasy to
begin with. So a question of, excuse me, how you dealt with that in
advance. Did you do it by saying I`m not going to show up at the
convention? Did you do the song and dance like Paul Ryan where he looks
the worst of a lot of I`m not going to endorse, I am going to endorse or do
you pull a Mitch McConnell and just say I`m going to endorse him. I never
going to talk about him again and hopefully we don`t get slaughtered in the
down ballot race. They know now he is not going to change. This is what
they are saddled with. And there are a lot of people having to answer
really bad, the question –

SHARPTON: Well, he is not only not changing, it seems to be getting worse,
I mean. And you`ve been covering the Clinton campaign. Are they just
popping popcorn and sitting back enjoying this like it is a matinee?

ANNIE KARNI, POLITICAL REPORTER, POLITICO: Very confident.

SHARPTON: Like the movies?

KARNI: Not quite but they are really confident and they see what they
think a lot of unforced errors, him going after the judge Curiel for one.
And now the Republicans sort of fleeing from him. What we saw right after
he became the presumptive nominee in early May was it looked like
consolidation and the polls showed it. And the poll showed that even
though this isn`t a normal candidate, like it looks like it could shape up
to be a norm election where Republicans fall in line with their nominee and
the Democrats for the Democrat.

But then, there seems to be a reverse. Hillary Clinton now looks like
she`s unifying the party and what looked like a unified from the other side
seems to be falling apart.

SHARPTON: And she seems to be picking up some Republicans even.

You know, I saw an interesting headline, Tara, in “The New York Times” late
this week where the unlikely savior emerges to help endangered Republicans,
George W. Bush. I mean, what does it say that you`ve got people running
for reelection to the Senate that are now going – saying they want George
W. Bush as opposed to the Republican nominee to come in and campaign for
that, for them, and raise money for them. I mean, what does that say?

TARA DOWDELL, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: It was not long ago when George W.
Bush was persona non-grata within the Republican Party –

SHARPTON: Most unpopular man to leave the White House.

DOWDELL: Exactly. Did not want to be seen with him, did want to campaign
with him, did not want to talk about him. So the fact that now, people
would rather campaign with George W. Bush who was once very toxic versus
their own nominee is really problematic with Donald Trump. I would say
this though with respect to Trump, when you look – this is a guy who has
spent his whole life being coddled. Someone whose constantly been told
yes, he surrounds himself with yes people so the notion he would ever take
advice from the Republican party and fall in line what they wanted when he
surrounded himself with yes people, he was going to be told no by the
Republican Party on certain things, that was a non-started. That was never
going to happen.

SHARPTON: But talking about how he has been all his life, I mean, even his
language when you talk about how he has turned off certain people, his
language has always been sort of different. I can go back to 2011 when he
talked about the blacks, he says the blacks, the women, the Muslim. I
mean, people don`t talk like that anymore. Let me show you what I am
talking about though.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I have a great relationship with the blacks. I have always had a
great relationship with the blacks.

Everyone says Trump with the Mexicans. The Mexicans love me.

The Muslims have to work with us.

And for the gays out there, ask the gays and ask the people. Ask the gays.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: I mean, the gays, the Mexicans, it`s all – it`s very much
implying they are different. It`s them, not us. That`s the inference.

WELCH: Well, the selling proposition of his campaign is of his vision of
American nationalism right? So it is filled with others. The main others
are the Muslim others, the Mexican others and the Chinese others and there
are other others.

SHARPTON: And the president wasn`t born. We started with the ultimate
other individual who happened to be the president of the United States and
commander in-chief.

WELCH: Which is amazing. And the fact that there is any Republicans this
week, last week saying we can`t believe that Trump is saying this about the
president. He was the biggest birther on the planet in 2011, but another
thing that Trump does is he changes his spots. In 2012 he said Mitt Romney
lost the election because of this (INAUDIBLE) anti-Mexican.

SHARPTON: Yes. We are going to get to that more in the next block.

But Annie, let me go to the fact that there is one who is not done that in
terms of denouncing the president and that`s Hillary Clinton. In fact,
they sounded very similar, President Obama and her this week. Let me play
you what the president said and what she said and the similarities were
note-worthy. Let`s put it that way.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLINTON: Is Donald Trump suggesting that there are magic words that once
uttered will stop terrorists from coming after us.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: There is no magic to the
phrase of radical Islam.

CLINTON: Trump`s words will be in fact they already are a recruiting tool
for ISIS.

OBAMA: That`s their propaganda. That`s how they recruit.

CLINTON: Will responsible Republican leaders stand up to their presumptive
nominee?

OBAMA: Do Republican officials actually agree with this?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Annie, how effective is this one-two punch?

KARNI: I think it was very effective. It came on a day before they were
supported to campaign together, an event that was cancelled because of the
shooting. But they effectively were campaigning together, obviously,
corded message. Hillary Clinton`s campaign started tweeting hashtag in
sync about let the coordination of them.

This will be coming, we will see a lot of as Obama hit the trail. But
also, Hillary is going to have to kind of walk a fine line here because she
and Obama are not completely in sync on all foreign policy decisions.

SHARPTON: There is a difference in Syria and all.

But Tara, let me ask this. Are we seeing that the president whose
favorability is high, is no longer considered as some used to say risky for
her to kind of like really hope the president endorses and he`s already
endorsed but embrace and get out there and she identifies as much as she
can with the president?

DOWDELL: Yes, President Obama, I think even when people were saying he was
risky, he was still going to be a huge asset to her. Now he is even a
bigger asset to her because his favorability numbers have gone up. But the
people who like President Obama, he has a very strong coalition that has
maintained itself even when things weren`t going great for him in terms of
the media coverage.

But I will tell you this, Donald Trump is used to being on the offensive.
He is not used to having to play defense. It is very smart strategy for
the president and secretary Clinton to continue to hit him and not just hit
him randomly but to hit him on the issues that people already have
concerned about, to hit him on things that make people nervous about him
and his being a loose cannon, his being a risk to this country from a
foreign policy standpoint, those are things that give people pause. Those
are the things that make even some of – some Republicans concerned about
him.

SHARPTON: Let me take my break. I will come right back to you, Annie.
Everybody stay with us. Lots more ahead.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Next, is it a game change for gun control? Democratic
senator Ben Cardin on the fight in Congress.

And later, the Alton Mills story, the debut of our new series following one
man`s path from prison to redemption.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: I held and hugged grieving family members and parents and their
asked why does is this keep happening? And they pleaded that we do more to
stop the carnage. They don`t care about the politics and neither do I.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: President Obama calling for a political breakthrough on gun
control in the wake of the Orlando massacre and this week the Senate is
planning to take up several propels. After a dramatic democratic
filibuster, one measure is aimed at stopping those on a terror watch list
for buying guns. It could make a difference. Last year 244 transactions
involved a person from a terror list trying to buy guns. They were able to
do it 223 times. That`s a 91 percent success rate.

The other issue on the table, stronger background checks. An 89 percent of
Americans support it. Friday marks the one-year anniversary of the mass
shooting at Mother Emanuel church that killed nine people. Reverend Sharon
Risher who lost her mother and two cousins said her heart could not take it
when she heard the news from Orlando.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REV. SHARON RISHER, MOTHER AND TWO COUSINS KILLED IN CHURCH SHOOTING: I
plead with you, I plead with you with everything that I have in my heart I
ask everyone to join me in this walk to disarm hate.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: President Obama warns of dire consequences if we don`t act.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

OBAMA: This debate needs to change. It`s out grown the old political
stalemate stalemates. Those who defend the easy accessibility of assault
weapons should meet these families and explain why that make sense. If we
don`t act, we will keep seeing more massacres like this because we will be
choosing to allow them to happen.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Joining me now senator Ben Cardin, Democrat from Maryland. He
was part of the filibuster on the Senate floor.

Thank you for joining me, senator.

SEN. BEN CARDIN (D), MARYLAND: My pleasure. It is good to be with you.

SHARPTON: Let me ask you. This week we expect to get to some votes. Are
you confident Republican wills join you and other Democrats in voting on
the no fly issue and background checks?

CARDIN: I am not confident that we will have the support. I hope that we
do. I know we have the support of American people. I know this is common
sense to stop those who are terrorists from being able to get handguns. I
know it is also common sense to have background checks so we know people
are legally entitled to have a handgun.

This is common sense gun safety legislation that is overwhelmingly
supported by the American people and we are going to see how members of the
Senate vote this coming week.

SHARPTON: Let me show you what two Republican leaders, senator Cruz and of
course, speaker Ryan had to say because some Republicans are casting this
as about terrorism and not about gun control. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RYAN: So the question is, is going after the second amendment how you stop
terrorism? No. That`s not how you stop terrorism. We need to make sure
that we are focusing on the real issue here which is terrorism.

SEN. TED CRUZ (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is not a gun
control issue. This is a terrorism issue.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: What`s your response to those comments?

CARDIN: What we are talking about doing is people who should not have
handguns being denied the opportunity to buy them. I don`t think any
American wants a terrorist able to go and legally buy a handgun in our
country. I think all Americans believe that our laws that prevent those
who have felony records, those that are mentally have problems, those are
not entitled to have a handgun shouldn`t be able to get it. We shouldn`t
have a loophole that can go to a gun show and be able to buy the handgun
without a background check.

This is not about the second amendment. The second amendment is very
clear, the Supreme Court interpreted that that law-abiding citizens have
the right to purchase handguns. There is nothing in any of these
amendments that will affect law-abiding citizens.

SHARPTON: Now, you said that the main obstacle to reform, I`m quoting you,
“pandering to the NRA.” How do we overcome that?

CARDIN: You`re absolutely right. The NRA basically wants to block
anything meaningful from happening. There is no rational for that. The
NRA believes that they control the Congress. I think the American people
have a say how Congress should act. And I hope you will see my colleague`s
respond to Americans want us to do. Look. We have gone through too many
tragedies in our community and the one option that should be off the table
is do nothing. It`s time for Congress to act.

SHARPTON: We are at one year since Charleston, South Carolina in the
massacre there at the Emanuel Church now in Orlando. Are we at the tipping
point here?

CARDIN: I will tell you, I`m as frustrated as the people of this country.
These tragedies are happening too frequently. We need to take action to
keep American safe. And it is got to be on many different tracks. Yes, we
have to go after terrorists who want to come to America and make sure we
keep our country safe. Yes, we have to deal with radicalization within our
own country. And yes, we have to deal with keeping guns out of the hands
of people who shouldn`t have them.

SHARPTON: Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland, thank you for being with us this
morning.

CARDIN: Thank you.

SHARPTON: And on this topic, you should check out a powerful new column by
White House senior advisor Valeria Jarrett. She writes in part, after one
year from the atrocity at Charleston, the mass shooting in Orlando last
Sunday reminds us that our work is far from done. You can find the whole
piece at WhiteHouse.gov.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Coming up, one lawmaker has called to drug test rich
people who get tax breaks. We will tell you what it`s all about.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Speaker Paul Ryan is desperately trying to show that the GOP has
an agenda separately from Donald Trump starting with the poverty plan.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RYAN: We should measure success based on results, outcomes, are our
efforts working to actually get people out of poverty instead of measuring
success based on input by effort. Are we spending enough money? Do we
have enough programs? Do we have enough people on these programs?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Do we have enough money? Do we have enough programs? Spoken
like a man who has repeatedly called from cutting trillions of dollars from
the safety net. And he made those comments in front of a drug rehab
center, underscoring the false view that all poor people are on drugs.
That was the last straw for Democratic Congresswoman Gwen Moore. She is
sick of states drug testing the poor for benefits even though studies show
they useless drugs than people not on assistance. So Moore unveiled a bill
that would drug test the rich. If they want tax breaks from the
government, if someone is getting over 150,000 in tax deduction, Moore says
they should prove they are not on drugs. She is treating welfare for the
rich just like welfare for the poor. Let`s see if speaker Ryan adds that
to his poverty agenda. Nice try, but she got you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I love the cowboy hats but I love the make America great again
hats, too. You know, the protester just gave me an idea. We will say make
America great again on a cowboy hat. Right? I love that idea. Thank you
Mr. Protester.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: It seems like the right is suffering from a relapse of Obama
derangement syndrome. Of course, it all started with patient zero, the
original birther king himself Donald Trump. He spent a lot of time after
the Orlando shooting implying the president was somehow on the wrong side.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: He doesn`t get it or he gets it better than anybody understands. I
happen to think that he just doesn`t know what he is doing but there are
many people that think maybe he doesn`t want to get it.

We are lead by a man that either is not tough, not smart or he`s got
something else in mind and the something else in mind, you know, people
can`t believe it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Trump even issued a statement saying quote “he continues to
prioritize our enemy over our ally and for that, the American people for
that matter. Trump then tweeted out this debunked article that claimed the
Obama administration had actively supported ISIS.

Let me bring back our panel. Tara Dowdell, Annie Karni and Matt Welch.

Let me go to you, Annie. Why is this kind of language bubbling up again?

KARNI: Well, for one, I think it is happening because Obama just endorsed
and now he is going to be the most effective surrogate for Hillary Clinton.
Her path to nomination is still the Obama coalition. And he is a big part
of getting those people to vote.

But one thing I would say is the attacks on Obama are a gift to Hillary
Clinton, I think. I think she looks best not when she is defending herself
but when she is not role of defending her president, defending Obama.
Voters I talked to all through the primary, a big motivating factor is she
had his back. People love her in that position. And she has a problem –.

SHARPTON: It would energizes his base.

KARNI: But she`s – so her – Hillary is defense or attack dog for Obama
is a more likable image of her than if she was just defending herself or
defending her husband. So I think that Trump is actually doing her a bit
of a gift by letting her play that role here.

SHARPTON: Tara, the Obama derangement syndrome seems to be spreading.
This week Senator John McCain said President Obama was responsible for the
Orlando massacre. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: Barack Obama is directly responsible for it
because when he pulled even out of Iraq, Al-Qaeda went to Syria, became
ISIS.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Now later in the week senator McCain, of course, walked it back
and said he was talking about the president`s policies, not the president
personally. But it`s still a very disappointing thing coming from John
McCain.

DOWDELL: Well, Donald Trump is a rabid dog and he appears to have bitten
John McCain and spread the rabies. No, in all seriousness though, He`s
John McCain is in a fight. He is in a fight. And so you see him trying to
appeal to Trump supporters because they are energized and they are going to

SHARPTON: You mean his reelection. He`s in a tough reelection.

DOWDELL: Yes, yes. And so, you see him trying to appeal to Trump
supporters. And what mobilizes Trump supporters is this anti-Obama, this
veiled in John McCain`s case, veiled discriminatory statements, where
Donald Trump is more of a whistler. You know, John McCain is still dog
whistling. But that type of thing energizes his supporters. And he is -
it is not lost on John McCain. Those folks are going to show up and vote.

SHARPTON: But Matt, before we get too far over there, there is a startling
poll I want to raise this week. NBC polled Americans are split on Trump`s
call for a Muslim ban, 50 percent support it, 46 percent oppose it. I
mean, is that what Trump is appealing to this wide spread hostility toward
Muslims?

WELCH: I mean, he has popularized that. That number would be different if
he hadn`t been talking about this for the last six months which gets in our
minds the steaks of this election and rhetoric around it, which should I
think certainly be alarming to a lot of people. It`s just ridiculous on
the face to ban people waiting to ask them, are you Muslim?

SHARPTON: Or constitutional DOJ.

WELCH: That`s a little bit less clear. But, you know, it is for McCain,
it is another thing. Remember last time John McCain had a competitive
election in 2010. That`s when he has made the worst commercial we have
seen in a long time called complete the dang defense, right? So the
problem with Trump is not necessary that he is so different than
Republicans but he actually emanates from a lot of the same kind of things
we have seen from him for the last 15 years. It is not just under Obama,
it is the 2004 Republican National Convention here in New York, the way
that they are calling Democrats girly men.

(CROSSTALK)

SHARPTON: Annie, when you look at the fact that Trump loves his Obama
conspiracies, will we start seeing him start rolling out his Clinton
conspiracies?

KARNI: I`m sure. I think that he is saying he is just getting started on
Hillary. He is down in the polls and kind of acknowledging as much, which
is rare for him to acknowledge he is losing and say I haven`t started. So
yes, I mean, we have seen him go after Bill Clinton. I have been a little
surprised that he seems to prefer, actually, maybe this is interesting, he
seems to prefer Bill Clinton and Barack Obama as head on targets over
Hillary Clinton herself.

SHARPTON: Interesting.

KARNI: I have sort to be surprised he didn`t make more the emails, the
other week when the IG report came out.

SHARPTON: Interesting.

Well, let me ask you, Tara, a lot of this fear mongering work for him
during the primaries, will it work during a general election?

DOWDELL: Well, I think Donald Trump`s fear mongering will continue to keep
his supporters energized and certainly that`s a priority for him. The part
of why he doesn`t want to pivot on certain issues that he probably would be
willing to pivot on since he`s OK with having being on every side of every
issue to begin with, I think one of the reasons he doesn`t want to pivot is
because he does not want to alienate those folks to have been his long-time
supporters. So that`s a factor for him. That`s something that he is
clearly considering and is a part of his thought process.

But I do – I want to say one thing, I do think you have to be careful. I
think some of what he believes is more popular than we would like to think.

SHARPTON: Tara Dowdell, we`ll have to leave it there.

Tara Dowdell, Annie Karni and Matt Welch, thank you for your time this
morning.

WELCH: Thank you.

KARNI: Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Straight ahead, the Alton Mills story, our new series
on criminal justice, mandatory minimums, a life sentence and struggle for a
second chance.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Today we are launching a special installment of our bending
towards justice series. The story of Alton Mills. This year, we will be
following Alton, a promising high school football player who became a low-
level drug carrier and ended up in federal prison with a life sentence.

It was part of the so-called war on drugs which really became a war on
people. Harsh sentencing guidelines were sold to the public as a way to
crackdown on crime. Instead, they ruin lives and put a shocking number of
non-violent offenders behind bars.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KEVIN RING, VICE PRESIDENT, FAMILIES AGAINST MANDATORY MINIMUMS: What you
see in Alton`s case and in others is completely disproportion sentences.
So you have series of individual cases that injustices that taken together
have produced a system of mass incarceration, essentially.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: Since Congress created mandatory minimums in the 1980s, our
prison population has exploded. Today there are 2.2 million people behind
bars, a rate that far exceeds any other country.

“Politics Nation” went to Chicago to put a face to this issue. We followed
Alton Mills and his family through the injustice of mandatory minimums, the
despair of incarceration and the fight for a second chance.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was still dark outside when they came. It was the
FBI. They had shotguns and everything. You would think it`s a nightmare,
you know, think it`s just going to go away but it don`t. It don`t.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was a big teddy bear. That`s what he looked like.
He wasn`t troublemakers. He wasn`t mad.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was a good kid. I had the type of mother and father
that raised me to be respectful.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I started seeing him staying away from home and
wasn`t coming home, I knew something wasn`t right.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I had a friend that came to me and offered me a job and
the job was to be a courier. I hung out with a bunch of goldfishes that
was dealing with some sharks and the sharks caught the goldfishes up and we
was the ones to end up going to prison. They arrested me at my mother and
father`s house. That was the worst day of my life because my mother had
never seen me in handcuffs and I never seen my mother cry.

So that day when I got in the squad car, the FBI agent told me, he said
listen. You have a great family. Don`t you know you`re going to get life
in prison? I said life in prison? I said for what? I didn`t do nothing
but sold a little drugs. He said no, it`s a bigger picture than that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Until this year, violent crime was rare and blame the
up surge on drugs.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Nothing he would say that we are winning the drug
lord.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some say it`s more like crime and no punishment these
days.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Clinton signed a crime bill into law.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mandatory minimum sentences, what Congress has
answered to public demand to get tough with drug dealers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I knew that one day I was going to go to jail, but I
didn`t have the thought in my mind that I was going to be going to jail for
the rest of my life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There were a lot of problems in my view in the justice
system at this time and this was one of them. The mandatory sentences
which took discretion out of the judge`s hands completely.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They told me you know your son looking for life in
prison. I said what did he do? You know, he isn`t killed nobody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At the time of the sentencing, I clearly expressed my
discomfort with the law required me to do and I had no option.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Alton`s daughter was 19. So when he was
incarcerated, he missed his daughter growing up. He missed birthdays,
graduating from eight grade. Graduating from 12th grade.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They took the remainder of my 20s, all of my 30s and
part of my 40s.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s never been to prison in his life and he`s going to
prison and he`s going to die there and that`s it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Being on the inside in prison is a nightmare. I used
to go to sleep at night and always dream of a place that I wanted to be.
Like my mom`s house when she used to send me pictures of the house, of the
barbecues, I always look at the picture and at night I would dream of being
there. Those are 22 years that I lost that I can`t get back.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I never gave up. You know, because I said he`s not
going to die up in there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I used to always tell his mom, he`s going to come home.
He`s going to come home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When president Obama gave his inauguration, I was in
Greenville and the only thing that I said about President Obama was that he
is going to make some changes.

OBAMA: Earlier today I commuted the sentences of 95 men and women who had
served their debt to society.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a letter from President Obama. Dear Alton, I
want to personally inform you that I am granting you your application for
commendation. I believe in your ability to prove the doubtful wrong and
change your life for the better. So good luck and God speed, sincerely,
Barack Obama, president of the United States.

I just don`t know how many times I read that thing.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He called me and told me mom, I`m home. I`m coming
home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After I got off the phone with him, I sat in the track
and cried because I couldn`t believe it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, God, when he came through that door and he cried,
he cried, and heard me and stuff, you know, and said I`m fixing to get
emotional. And I thought I would never see you-all again, never. You
know, and that was a good feeling. It was a good feeling.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I waited 22 and a half years for my brother to come
home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I did 22 years, four months, four days and one hour.
That`s how much time I actually did.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If someone has been in prison for a long time and does
not have the support system, it`s very easy to go back to a life of crime.
You need all the help you can get.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SHARPTON: He needs all the help he can get. There are a lot of Americans
just like Alton Mills trying to rebuild lives after years or even decades
lost to our broken criminal justice system.

In the next part of our series, we`ll follow Alton as he navigates life on
the outside living in a halfway house, looking for work and learning what
it means to be free after two decades in prison.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can open up the window and see freedom. Instead of
looking out the window with the bars and constantly seeing what`s going on
on the compound I`m on but here, open up the window and I see freedom.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: To share your thoughts on Alton and his story and for more
updates on his progress, go to facebook.com/politicsnation and follow us on
twitter.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SHARPTON: Finally this morning, we talked to someone who has taken a
different path to celebrity and that`s an understatement. In 2003 Glozell
Green was a struggling comedian trying to make it in Hollywood but then she
began posting original videos in You Tube and her popularity took off with
her signature green lipstick and wild personality. Glozell has become an
internet sensation offering had advice, interviewing celebrities and doing
crazy stunts like eating hot peppers in cinnamon.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GLOZELL GREEN, COMEDIAN: Hello, is you OK? Is you good? Because I wanted
to know. I`m here with the kid president. Go gators, I can`t really – I
don`t –

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: She has more than four million subscribers. Her videos have
been viewed more than 700 million times. And that fame even landed her an
interview with President Obama.

Joining me now is comedian and You Tube star Glozell Green who just wrote a
new memoir, is you OK?

Thanks for being here. First, I have to ask you, is you OK?

GREEN: Yes, I is OK. I`m so excited. I almost teared up because it`s
Reverend Al Sharpton talking about me. I`m so excited. I`ve been watching
you a few sizes ago. I just love you. I love you.

SHARPTON: I love you. I mean, let me ask you something, you are a You
Tube sensation. Why use technology that`s thousands of years old to tell
your story. You`re writing a memoir now or you`ve written one.

GREEN: Yes, there is nothing wrong with the written word. And it is good
to hold a good book and just get intimate. So yes, I`m going and throwing
back to a book, you know. I`m bringing reading back, making reading great
again.

SHARPTON: All right. Now, your interview with President Obama, I
mentioned the president did an interview, it got a lot of criticism because
of this moment. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GREEN: My mama said when you go to somebody`s house, you have to give them
something, don`t come empty-handed so I have green lipstick lipsticks, one
for your first wife –

OBAMA: My first wife? Do you know something I don`t?

(LAUGHER)

GREEN: For the first lady. And he first children.

OBAMA: First lady and the first children.

GREEN: Sorry.

OBAMA: I`m teasing.

GREEN: Sorry. All right. I`m going to put these here.

OBAMA: Let me take a look at these, though.

GREEN: It`s green.

OBAMA: Yes. I mean, it is impressive. I`m so sorry. I`m going to see
how it looks and ask Michelle to try it on, maybe tonight.

GREEN: OK. All right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SHARPTON: I mean, you are used to people knit picking and criticizing you,
I`m sure.

GREEN: Yes, of course, when you`re online you get a lot of people who are
going to troll you and say all kinds of horrible things, but I could have
died in that moment, really. I`m glad you showed a clip because I didn`t
even remember after I missed up. I went somewhere else. So that was
crazy.

SHARPTON: Now you talk about in the book and it`s a great book people
should read it.

GREEN: Thank you.

SHARPTON: You talk about growing up in the non-digital age.

GREEN: Yes.

SHARPTON: How were you able to do that and transition into being such a
success in this age?

GREEN: Because I was working hard on doing standup and trying to figure
out my way when You Tube came along, I`m like this is the medium for me. I
could reach a lot of people. I wasn`t quite sure but putting down ideas
and I thought maybe one day I`ll have a show and I will have my ideas
already on a video because I kept losing pieces of paper where I was
putting my ideas. But I didn`t know that the You Tube, the internet would
be the medium that launched my career.

SHARPTON: And it definitely has done that. Let me ask you something
between you and I as you say I used to be much larger, I have come down a
lot but I`ve been thinking about increasing my image online, my profile. I
want your advice. Let me show this and let me ask you, do you think that
would work?

(LAUGHTER)

GREEN: That is beautiful. I love it. You post that, you know, everybody
is going – you`re going to get millions of more views right there. Yes,
definitely.

SHARPTON: Thank you so much.

GREEN: I love you.

SHARPTON: The book is “is you OK,” Glozell Green, thank you for your time.

GREEN: Thank you.

SHARPTON: That does it for me. Thanks for watching. Enjoy your father`s
day. 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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