The Rachel Maddow Show, Transcript 07/08/15
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Thanks.
HAYES: You bet.
MADDOW: And thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. Happy
Happy birthday to the U.S. Secret Service. Secret Service turns one
of those really good big round numbers today. Today, the Secret Service
turns 150 years old.
Apparently, to recognize the Secret Service on the 150th anniversary
of its founding, today, all the people alive in the United States who used
to be president before but who aren`t anymore, of whom there are four,
those four former living presidents all reportedly recorded videos –
videos of thanks and congratulations for the men and women of the Secret
Service on this big anniversary of the founding of their agency.
Now, that said, I`m not allowed to show you any of those videos that
the former presidents made for the Secret Service because it is a service
that is secret. So, we`re told that those videos happened on the occasion
of this birthday. But I can`t actually prove it.
On the occasion of this birthday, though, I do have a present for the
agency though, which is this – this heroic Russian hacker perp walk. It`s
the man on the left in the purple V-neck sweater. His name is Vladimir
Drinkman, 32 years old, Russian. He was expedited to the United States to
face trial in U.S. federal court this past February.
And the way they got the hacker Vladimir Drinkman was a big sprawling
international investigation led by the U.S. Secret Service. We think of
the Secret Service as having the job of protecting the president of the
United States and his or her family. But the origin of the agency actually
gives them a lead role on a lot of different types of financial crime.
Now, it`s the Secret Service, for example, that`s in charge of
busting counterfeiters. The Secret Service likes to brag that when they
were founded as an agency 150 years ago, fully one-third of the currency
being used in the United States was counterfeit. But they put a stop to
The Secret Service used to be housed administratively inside the
Treasury Department until Homeland Security was formed.
So, yes, they protect the president. That`s what we think of their
most important job as, right? But Secret Service also goes after large
scale financial crimes.
And the way they got Vladimir Drinkman for a large scale crime, the
way they got him caught in their snare is because of a hack of one of the
country`s main stock exchanges, which was first exposed in 2011 by “The
Wall Street Journal.” This was the headline, “Hackers Penetrate NASDAQ
Computers.” This was a blaring news story, both as a financial story and
as a crime story. It`s broken by “The Wall Street Journal” at midnight, at
12:01 a.m. one night in February, 2011.
Quote, “Hackers have repeatedly penetrated the computer network of
the company that runs the NASDAQ stock market during the past year. And
federal investigators are trying to identify the perpetrators and their
purpose. The NASDAQ situations has set up alarms within the government
because of the exchange`s critical political role, which officials put
right one power companies and air traffic control operations as all part of
the nation`s basic infrastructure.
A probe into the matter was initiated by the Secret Service and now
includes the FBI.
So, the stock exchange, that particular stock exchange, NASDAQ,
really had been hacked extensively. And by the time “The Wall Street
Journal” broke the story in February 2011, that hack had been going on for
a very long time. Apparently, the hackers chose not to affect trading on
the NASDAQ, although it seems clear they penetrated the stock markets
computer system so effectively, that maybe they could have disrupt trading
if they wanted to.
One of the things that prosecutors listed in the indictment was an
instant message sent between two of these hackers while they were in the
middle of breaking into the NASDAQ`s computer system. They said to each
other, quote, “NASDAQ is owned.”
And, in fact, these hackers, by the time they finally brought them
in, including our friends Vladimir Drinkman, they ended up getting charge
for a huge range of hacking related financial crimes. Vladimir Drinkman
was charged for not only hacking NASDAQ. He was also charged with hacking
into companies like Visa and JetBlue and 7-Eleven, for some? Perhaps he
had the munchies, I don`t know. He was charged with hacking 160 million
When they announced the indictment against Vladimir Drinkman and four
other Russian and Ukrainian hackers, they announced it as the largest data
breach prosecution ever announced. So, that was NASDAQ. NASDAQ is the
stock exchange that bills itself as the home for tech companies, basically.
It`s not all they do, but that`s sort of what they specialize in.
And as a tech-focused stock exchange, NASDAQ has been particularly
embarrassed over and over and over again over the years, as an exchange,
supposedly focused on tech issues. But NASDAQ has had a lot of technical
failures on its own over the years, some of them happening at the most
outrageously inconvenient times.
For example, when the company Facebook launched its IPO, it was
thought that might be one of the biggest IPOs ever. First day trading on
Facebook was hyped like nothing you could possibly believe. But it turned
out the first day was a little soft, a little slow, a little unexpectedly
sluggish which was later revealed to be because NASDAQ blew it.
Technical difficulties on the day of the Facebook launch. Oof!
In earlier times, in simpler times, like say in 1987, NASDAQ was once
laid low by a four-legged technical glitch known as squirrel. It was only
a few weeks after the Black Friday crash in 1987, everybody was pretty
freaked out from Black Friday. But a squirrel, not this exact squirrel,
but a squirrel bit the wrong power cord somewhere in Connecticut and it
crashed NASDAQ, completely shut down NASDAQ for more than 80 minutes.
As “The New York Times” tactfully noted, in addition to the 20
million shares that were prevented from being traded during that squirrel
glitch, one very specific squirrel also lost its life that day.
Then, it was another squirrel, 1994. Another squirrel ate another
super delicious, irresistible power line, lost its life. NASDAQ thought
they had a back-up power system that would kick in in the case of another
squirrel. But it didn`t work, and in 1994, again, NASDAQ shut down – this
time for 34 minutes because of squirrel number two.
And, you know, technical problems do happen. Sometimes it`s
squirrel. Sometimes it`s power outages.
About a month after the indictment of the Russian hackers who had
hacked NASDAQ, in August 2013 is when they were indicted. In August 2013,
NASDAQ shut down for three hours one day in August 2013 because of
something they called connectivity issues. I don`t know what that means
but they said connectivity issues.
And it is not just NASDAQ. It happens in all the exchanges,
including the big kahuna, the New York Stock Exchange. In 2005, the New
York Stock Exchanges blamed systems communications problems for a four-
minute outage. In 1998, it was a computer switch malfunction they blame
for stopping trading for just under an hour. In 2009, they close the
exchange 16 minutes early one day because of something they called system
Glitches happen. And the markets feed on fear and the unknown like
Donald Trump feeds on your sense of outrage, and we will have more on that
And so, every time there`s something that causes fear and a sense of
insecurity, every time there`s a glitch that shuts something down in the
markets, even when we`re all assured it`s just a glitch, it does always
cause a certain degree of panic, or if not panic, and at least
But today`s glitch – today`s glitch was a really, really big glitch,
at least a really longstanding glitch. We don`t know exactly what it was.
But we know that in market terms, it took them forever to resolve and it to
Trading shut down on the New York Stock Exchange today, suddenly,
with no warning, at about 11:30 Eastern this morning. They didn`t start it
up again for another 3 1/2 hours, until after 3:00 p.m. Eastern, less than
an hour before the New York Stock Exchange was due to close.
And of all the times that the stock exchange has been closed for a
computer glitch or a technical glitch in the past, some technical
malfunction, some freaking suicidal squirrel making the ultimate sacrifice,
out of all the times and all the ways that some sort of technical failure
has shut down the exchanges in the past, it does happen, out of all those
times, no technical failure has ever taken down the stock exchange for as
long as it did today.
The previous record on the New York Stock Exchange was less than 90
minutes back in 2001. The stock exchange that day said they had a computer
systems connectivity problem. Everybody lost their minds in June 2001
because that glitch took so long to resolve, almost an hour and a half.
Today, it was more like three and a half hours. What happened?
So, the length of the shutdown is part of the reason people freaked
out a little bit today about what happened in the stock market. Another
reason people freaked out today is because of this guy in the purple
sweater, because back in February 2011 when his hack was first exposed,
when “The Wall Street Journal” broke that story at midnight last night in
February 2011, Russian and Ukrainian hackers had broken into, hacked into
the computer systems at NASDAQ, it was “The Journal” that first broke that
story. But then, it was “The New York Times” that broke the detail the
next day that I think has stuck in everybody`s mind ever since.
This hack was exposed in 2011, but the hack did not happen in 2011.
Quote, “The intrusion occurred late last year.” Late last year, but NASDAQ
said it had delayed notifying customers at the request to the Justice
So, Secret Service, FBI, Justice Department. They knew that the
system had been hacked. They were actively investigating who had hacked it
and why they hacked it and what damage they had done. They told that stock
exchange that that`s what happened and they were investigating it, and that
they told that stock exchange, you cannot admit this publicly. You cannot
tell people this is what actually happened.
Yes, they had been hacked. They knew that they had been hacked.
They couldn`t say so, they weren`t allowed to admit it publicly. So,
today, following mysterious ground stops at United Airlines, where all
United planes had to be kept on the ground for more than an hour because of
that company having a technical glitch of some kind, following “The Wall
Street Journal” home page, loading like this without explanation,
apparently just a minor technical glitch at “The Wall Street Journal” home
In the midst of those other things happening, the shutdown at the New
York Stock Exchange starts today, right, the stock exchange pretty quickly
assures everybody that, yes, this is a big deal. Yes, the entire New York
Stock Exchange is being shut down indefinitely without warning. But it is
just technical matter. Nothing to worry about.
These are the series of tweets from the stock exchange today. We`re
experiencing a technical issue that we`re working to resolve as quickly as
possible. The issue we are experiencing is an internal technical issue.
It`s not a result of a cyber breach. We chose to suspend training on the
stock exchange to avoid problems arising from our technical issue. Did we
mention this is just a technical issue?
On the one hand, in truth, it is not at all weird that the New York
Stock Exchange would have a technical issue, even one that shuts the whole
thing down. That stock exchange and lots of other stock exchanges have
lots of technical squirrel issues, right? They`ve had them over the years.
They haven`t had ones that took quite this long to resolve. Not ones
that were quite this big, but there was a long history of technical issues
So, on the one hand, it is not weird. On the other hand, if this was
a hack, if this was not just a failure but an attack, would they tell us?
Or do we have to wait until the indictment?
I mean, the government, the stock exchange, law enforcement, were all
very emphatic today that this was a glitch. This was not an attack from
any sort of external source. But in part because of all those apparently
unrelated other technical failures that happened in high profile businesses
today at roughly the same time, for a while today, it kind of felt like an
And maybe that is just a sad window into our psychology, right? That
it`s easier and more comforting in some ways to imagine when something like
the New York freaking stock exchanges goes away for three and a half hours
without any explanation. It may be that it is more comforting to think
that that is the result of some crime, right, some aggressive attack.
It may be more comforting to think of it as an attack, instead of to
think of it as us just being that fragile. Our critical infrastructure
being that squirrel.
Joining us now is Kelly Evans. She`s co-anchor of CNBC`s “Closing
Bell”, which broadcasts from the floor of the stock exchange.
Kelly, thank you for being here.
KELLY EVANS, CNBC: What a day it was.
EVANS: No squirrels in sight, but I think – just to start with what
you just said –
EVANS: You know, the extent to which this was a shocking, probably
the worse example the New York Stock Exchange has ever had of a systems
failure. And yet, it barely caused a ripple in the financial system, which
tells to you some extent the New York Stock Exchange is a pebble now. It
has 15 percent of the volume of equities that are traded every day, of
stocks that are traded every day. It once had 85 percent.
So, those outages that you mentioned from earlier last decade, there
have been 15 computer outages since 1975 when this first started happening.
So, it`s happened every couple of years, not that unusual. They were much
worse in the past, when pretty much any time anybody was trading, it was
going through the New York Stock Exchange.
That is not happening anymore. There are upwards, between public and
private exchanges, lit pools, dark pools, we`ve heard of this especially
with Michael Lewis`s book, more than 50 places where stocks trade today and
that`s exactly what happened during that three and a half hours.
MADDOW: Just because of the diversification of the trading world,
the stock exchange going down, while alarming, just doesn`t – there`s
other places for money to go, there`s other places for trading to happen.
EVANS: There is the entire time. We watch – for example, if you
just look at the ticker for the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the way that
most of us gain what happened every day, that continues to fluctuate. It
was well to the downside and that`s part of what happened today.
Psychology was already down in the market for other reasons.
China`s market, by the way, you want to talk about halting trade, I
mean, their regulators have basically halted 70 percent of the volume
simply because there`s been a sell-off, you know, without really giving
people any information. A lot of individual investors obviously had just
gotten into that market, they`re getting hammered. The issue in Greece,
does it stay or go from the Eurozone?
There are plenty of reasons people were nervous heading into the
trading session today. But when the market really started to take another
leg lower and it was open the whole time, it was in key time right before
3:00 p.m. Eastern where the New York Stock Exchange does become important,
MADDOW: It becomes more important than it is with other times today.
EVANS: Yes, because at the end of the day, a lot of mutual funds to
have marshal their pricing to the close and they use the New York Stock
Exchange close to do that. So the real issue became, could they get it
back up and running, in time to the close before 4:00 p.m. today.
MADDOW: Oh, wow. So, the urgency – so we were hearing like they
might open at 2:45. They might open at 3:00. It got pushed past 3:00. It
started to feel more stressful.
As it gets closer to 4:00, the real potential impact starts to loom
larger and larger and larger.
Can I just ask you one – I mean, you broadcast from the floor of the
stock exchange. Can you tell us what happens at the stock exchange? What
happens on the trading floor when something like this happens? The screens
freeze, do cursors disappear? What happens?
EVANS: You have this graphic, which I think viewers can still right
behind you with the squirrel, and it sort of shows the way most of the
time, there are all these panels and you can see them while you`re watching
us down on the floor behind us. They`re all lit up. They`ve got the
trades and the volume and the bids and the asks that are happening. Those
basically had the name of the company at each post, because there are
several posts and each post is responsible for different groups of
The company names were still up there, but it was just frozen in
black and white, which shows you there was no activity going on. There was
no sound going on. I mean, you were in the middle of the stock exchange,
which I albeit has gotten quieter over the years, and it was as silent as
it pretty gets during opening hours today.
MADDOW: Do you expect that tomorrow is going to be a little
EVANS: Tomorrow is going to be more tough for the New York Stock
Exchange than the days ahead, than it is for the financial systems more
generally ,because what it did, in your point, Rachel, is spot on the
sense, this morning, there was a lot of concern that there was a targeting
of the U.S. financial system or some sort of hacking attack that
potentially was taking down both our air infrastructure and the financial
As it moved on towards the afternoon, United got back up and running,
“The Journal” perhaps still not explaining what happened. Now, the
attention come on the New York Stock Exchange which as one trader put it
me, had its NASDAQ moment, it`s glitch.
EVANS: It`s really – so, they have to make sure as the president
told us today, this doesn`t happen again, because what they just show the
world was how little the New York Stock Exchange matters relative to how
much it used to.
MADDOW: Right. And when you`re talking about a literal physical
market, confidence in that market, and its structures, you know, its
calibration, and all of those things, its responsiveness – that`s
everything, that`s the whole reason people have to go there, especially if
they have other places they can take their business that work, too.
MADDOW: Kelly Evans, co-anchor of CNBC`s “Closing Bell” – thank you
for helping me understand this.
EVANS: Thanks for having me here.
MADDOW: I`m sorry I yelled squirrel a lot in front of you.
Lots more ahead tonight, including a remarkable day of debate and
passion in the South Carolina story that we have been covering, the debate
around the Confederate flag. Something happened in the debate which we
have on tape which is absolutely remarkable, brought our own newsroom to a
halt when we saw it. I`ve got that tape for you next.
Stay with us.
MADDOW: One of my favorite “Associated Press” quotes of all time,
direct quote, “I`m sorry. I didn`t think I was going to talk about man on
dog with a United States senator. It`s sort of freaking me out,” end
Maybe the greatest response, greatest spontaneous response ever given
by an interviewer. That was an “AP” reporter responding in amazement to
then Senator Rick Santorum after he volunteered to that reporter that he
thought same sex relationships were the moral equivalent of what he called
“man on dog” relationships.
And thus, he forevermore became known as Rick “Man on Dog” Santorum.
Having a quote like that attached to your name is not just a Rick
Santorum phenomenon. It is happening again right now, today. It`s
happening in the funniest way possible. That is our best new thing in the
world coming up right at the end of the show tonight.
Please do stay with us for that.
MADDOW: Coming up in this segment, just a moment, I`ve got that
remarkable tape that I mentioned a moment ago. It`s from South Carolina,
where the house there today started debating whether or not to remove the
Confederate flag from the grounds of the state capitol.
There was an expectation I think that this debate today would be
contentious if not nasty, given how contentious this issue is and how
emotional this issue is for many people in that state.
But for much of the day, it was quite the opposite actually. It was
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STATE REP. GRADY BROWN (D), SOUTH CAROLINA: I`ve got a lot of people
who told me back home, “Grady, you vote to take it down, I`ve never voted
But if this has to be my sword and arrow, then so be it. My mama,
God bless her soul, this coming April, she would have gone 19 years. She
left me all of her Confederate memorabilia.
She was an avid member, loved the United Daughters of the
Confederacy. But my mama, God bless her soul, would tell me – Grady, you
need to do what you know is right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: So, that was Grady Brown, a Democrat who has served for over
30 years in the legislature, someone whose great-grandfather was a
Confederate soldier, saying today, despite the political risk, what she
knows and is hearing about in his face, in his district, he would vote to
remove the flag. His side of the argument came into the debate, appearing
to have a narrow margin, the votes they need to win. The votes they need
to take down the flag.
Keeping and retiring the flag is the last issue the house is going to
be taking up before they adjourn for the year. There`s a real sense that
if this legislation doesn`t get passed right now, then the political
momentum and the moral heft of this issue will be gone by the time they can
take them up again. The further we get in time from the massacre in that
Charleston church, the further we get from the funerals of Senator Clementa
Pinckney and the other eight people who were killed in that church, the
less politically possible it will ever be to retire this Confederate symbol
from the state capitol grounds.
So, there is this sense of urgency to do it now. That`s perhaps why
Governor Nikki Haley went personally to speak to members of the South
Carolina House during their lunch break this afternoon, to urge them to go
forward with this bill. The governor reportedly made another emotional
plea to have the flag removed.
If the house can do it, if they can pass that bill, that flag could
be gone by the end of this week. But the debate today slowed way down
because of more than 65 amendments that were put on the bill to be road
blocks, designed to drag the bill down and keep it from passing. Those
amendments are mostly the work of one, sort of grump Republican and already
dozens of his amendments have been tabled or withdrawn or ruled out of
order, but he`s been putting them out there to stop this thing from
The House in South Carolina has been debating this issue for more
than ten hours today and tonight, the with mostly civil and impassioned
speeches from lawmaker of both parties. But this is the tape I want you to
Very late this evening, right as we were getting ready to come into
the studio and do the show live, one Republican lawmaker named Jenny Horne
pleaded, as a lifelong Carolinian, pleaded, pleaded, for the flag to come
down. Watch this. She`s a Republican.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STATE REP. JENNY HORNE (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: I attended the funeral
of Senator Clementa Pinckney, and the people of Charleston deserve
immediate and swift removal of that flag from these grounds. We can save
for another day where this flag needs to go. Where – which flag needs to
fly or where it needs to fly or what museum it needs to be in.
But the immediate issue as far as I`m concerned as a member of the
Charleston delegation and speaking on behalf of the people in Charleston,
this flag offends my friend Nia McCloud (ph), my friend John King, my
friend Reverend Neil (ph).
I cannot believe that we do not have the heart in this body to do
something meaningful such as take a symbol of hate off these grounds on
Friday. And if any of you vote to amend, you are ensuring this flag will
fly beyond Friday. And for the widow of Senator Pinckney and his two young
daughters, that would be adding insult to injury. And I will not be a part
I`m sorry. I have heard enough about heritage. I have a heritage.
I am a lifelong South Carolinian. I am a descendant of Jefferson Davis.
But that does not matter. It`s not about Jenny Horne. It`s about
the people of South Carolina who have demanded that this symbol of hate
come off the state house grounds. We need to follow the example of the
Senate – remove this flag and do it today, because this issue is not
getting any better with age. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: Republican Jenny Horne speaking late this evening in the
South Carolina House.
As this amazing session continues, lawmakers could hold a second vote
on the bill tonight, which would pave the way for a final vote tomorrow
that could send the bill to Governor Nikki Haley`s desk. If that all
happens, the flag could be down as soon as Friday, maybe as soon as
tomorrow. But it is far from a done deal as this remarkable conversation
continues in that state.
Watch this space.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KATY TUR, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Why are we here in New York? Why
aren`t we out in the campaign trail?
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`ve been to Iowa many
times. I`ve been to New Hampshire many, many times. I love the people
there and we`ve had tremendous success. We`ve had tremendous crowds.
Nobody gets as many standing ovations and, you know, I spent a lot of time
out. I was in South Carolina recently. And we`re all over.
TUR: You`ve had no campaign events really this week. No campaign
events planned for next week that we know of so far. You`re not
campaigning that much. How can anybody take you seriously if you`re not
out there showing your face?
TRUMP: Because I`m doing television with you and I am up there a
lot. And I watch them there walking the streets and it didn`t mean
anything. And I was actually getting more news coverage than anybody else
by far because I`m the one that brought up the whole situation and the
whole mess with immigration and what the Mexican government is doing to us.
So, you know, I didn`t have to be and I would have been if they wanted me
to and I just decided that probably it wasn`t necessary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: It wasn`t necessary.
NBC News` Katy Tur did this interview with Donald Trump today and to
her credit, she identified this aspect of the Donald Trump phenomenon in
the race for president that nobody was talking about before Katy put it to
him like that.
And that is awkward issue that Mr. Trump, whatever you think about
him and his prospects, he isn`t really campaigning for president in the way
that candidates campaign. He`s not, you know, going to the early voting
states. He`s not showing up at Fourth of July events in New Hampshire.
Katy is right on that.
He is not really campaigning. And her asking him about that is part
of why this made so much news.
But in all fairness, I also have to say, that Mr. Trump`s answer to
her charge, his answer to her question, his answer that he doesn`t need to
be in Iowa, he doesn`t need to be in New Hampshire, he just needs to keep
doing national interviews, that answer is also really quite rational in
this political environment because – in contrast, today was an example of
a day when a PAC supporting another also-ran candidate who`s not likely
going to even make the debate stage next month, John Kasich, started
blowing hundred of thousands of dollars running ads in New Hampshire.
Bobby Jindal started hundreds of thousands in ads in Iowa yesterday and
I mean, traditionally, that`s the way you campaign in the early
states, because the early votes in the early states matter. But this year,
guys like John Kasich and Bobby Jindal, they don`t even get on the stage to
compete in the debates, unless they`re getting national poll numbers, which
Donald Trump is getting but these guys are not. And you don`t get them by
going to the early states and spending all your money in local TV markets
in the early states.
You get national poll numbers by being of national interest, by doing
national media, by making national news. And Donald Trump, whatever you
think of his strategy, he continues to place very comfortably in the top
10, sometimes even the top two in terms of national poll numbers among the
And as of today, Mr. Trump has just had his first place polling
finish in the state of North Carolina. PPP poll out of North Carolina has
him in first place by a big margin.
For all that success though, he does not seem to be enjoying himself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TUR: What about the company that have backed away from you? Nine by
our counts, if you want to count the city of New York that`s looking at its
Are you concerned that you`re going to come to a point where you`re
going to lose so much business that this isn`t worth it?
TRUMP: Now, I`m not concerned.
Let me tell you what`s worth it. If it weren`t for immigration, OK,
you wouldn`t even hear the word immigration if it wasn`t for Donald Trump.
This is too important. Yes, I`m losing some contracts. Who cares?
People politically, they are weak and they want to be politically correct.
Some of them have already apologized to me. They made a mistake.
And you know what? That`s fine, because compared to what I have.
First of all, my company is a massive company and it`s a very rich company.
But compared to what I have, it doesn`t matter.
Most importantly – even if it was a huge amount of money, I would
still do this. Now, when people run for – as an example, when these
different people are running for president, they don`t lose anything. A
politician doesn`t lose anything when he or she runs for president. They
run, they lose, they win, they don`t lose anything.
When I run, as a successful person, I lose a tremendous amount.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: I lose a tremendous amount.
Mr. Trump is still losing business. The latest to jump ship include
the PGA, which pulled its Grand Slam of Golf exhibition from Mr. Trump`s
golf club in L.A. Philips-Van Heusen, this big clothing company behind Mr.
Trump`s menswear brand. They say they are in the process of winding down
business with Mr. Trump.
Today, the star chef who was slated to open the flagship restaurant
in Mr. Trump`s new Washington, D.C. hotel. He pulled out. Jose Andres
said he was out of that business deal, he also put out this quite eloquent
statement explaining why he felt like he could no longer stay in this
He said, quote, “Donald Trump`s recent statements disparaging
immigrants make it impossible for my company and I to move forward with
opening a successful Spanish restaurant in Trump International`s upcoming
hotel in D.C. More than half of my team is Hispanic, as is many of our
guests and as a proud Spanish immigrant and recently naturalized American
citizen myself, I believe that every human being deserves respect
regardless of immigration status.”
And that eloquent and fairly moving statement from this famous chef,
from Jose Andres, highlights one of the unexpected ways that the presence
of Donald Trump as a presidential candidate is giving some other people the
opportunity to shine. I mean, it is happening in business as companies and
individual entrepreneurs who are working with him get a chance to say, I`m
not going to associate myself with him anymore. And these are my values
and this is why. It`s giving them a chance to shine.
It`s also happening now in politics. It`s happening now more in the
campaign as more and more of the rest of the Republican presidential field
realizes that one of the ways they can make themselves look serious and
responsible and respectable is to make a big public deal out of telling
everybody how much they disagree with Donald Trump. Rick Perry did it
today in a sort of self-serious video – he doesn`t do the video thing
well. He doesn`t do a great job.
But in this new self-serious video from Rick Perry today, he called
Donald Trump “Donal” throughout like he`s Irish. He says Donal Trump is
After a speech today, Lindsey Graham told the audience, quote, “My
party is in a hole with Hispanics. The first role of politics is when
you`re on the hole, stop digging. Somebody needs to take the shovel out of
Donald Trump`s hands.”
Those kinds of statements followed Jeb Bush and Chris Christie
slamming Mr. Trump last weekend, saying he doesn`t represent the Republican
Party. So, the success of Donald Trump as a Republican candidate for
president so far, it has had some weird side benefits. It has provided
lots of people in the business world and in politics with a way to build
themselves up as more rational and more decent simply by comparison when
you put them alongside Donald Trump and ask them to comment on Donald
But it`s also had one truly excellent side benefit, which is that his
candidacy and I think the success of his candidacy, has reinvigorated what
really ought to be a great American industry, of making fun of Donald
And I`m here to tell you tonight, that industry, the making fun of
Donald Trump industry, is back. I mean, it`s always been there to a
certain extent. He`s always been a little bit inherently hilarious. But
the industry of making fun of him to great effect is reborn as of today.
It is a thing of great beauty and that is going to be tonight`s best new
thing of the world right at the end of he show.
Please stay tuned for this.
MADDOW: Hey, we have some breaking news to report which has just
come in on the subject of Donald Trump, Republican presidential candidate.
Just within the last couple minutes, “The Washington Post” has reported the
chairman of the Republican Party, Reince Priebus, spent nearly an hour on
the phone tonight with Donald Trump, nearly an hour on the phone with him
tonight urging him to tone down his inflammatory comments about
Amazing. Reince Priebus gesture here apparently comes, according to
“The Washington Post,” comes at the urging of increasingly worried party
leaders. So that – if they`re trying to get him to tone it down, one
question is whether Mr. Trump will respond to that?
The other question is whether or not Republican leaders are out of
step with Republican voters on this, because Republican voters seem to like
Donald Trump today has just placed first in a statewide Republican
poll. PPP has just released its findings of a poll of Republican voters in
North Carolina. And North Carolina Republican voters picked Donald Trump
as the first choice for president by a pretty large margin. First choice.
Joining us now is Tom Jensen. He`s the director of Public Policy
Polling, which conducted that North Carolina poll.
Mr. Jensen, thanks very much for being here. It is nice to have you
TOM JENSEN, PUBLIC POLICY POLLING: Thank you, Rachel.
MADDOW: So, I don`t mean to be too oblivious about this, but I
really want an answer to this question and I`m hoping you are the man to
Who is it that wants Donald Trump for president as their first
choice? What can you tell us about who are these respondents who tell you
that he is their guy?
JENSEN: If you`re a conservative in North Carolina, your world has
been turned on its head over the last couple weeks.
Here are three things we found on this poll: Republicans in North
Carolina love the Confederate flag. It is getting taken away. Republicans
in North Carolina hate gay marriage. It is here to say stay. Republicans
in North Carolina hate Obamacare, it`s here to stay.
And one thing that these conservatives think is that the reason all
of these liberal thing have been happening is that Republican leaders have
not been steadfast enough in their conservative leadership. They`re
compromised too much.
Well, here you have Donald Trump making the most extreme statements
possible, going as far to the right as he can. And that`s really appealing
to a segment of voters who think that Republican leaders have abandoned
their own party and let this happen.
MADDOW: And if that doesn`t translate into “I want a nonpolitician”,
if that was – if it was oh, politicians have failed us. We need someone
outside the political system. There are other potential choices on your
list of candidates: Carly Fiorina, there`s Ben Carson, there`s these other
outsiders. You`re saying it is his outrageousness that makes him
attractive rather than just that as he business guy.
JENSEN: Yes. Every single time Trump makes one of these really far
out conservative extremist sort of statements, we see his favorability
number with Republican voters just go up and up and up. Before Trump got
into the race, we were intending to find Republican voters actually
slightly negative opinion of him on. But on this most recent North
Carolina survey, 55 percent favorable, 32 percent unfavorable. So, he is
really striking a chord with these voters, particularly who identify
themselves as being very conservative.
MADDOW: Tom, I don`t want you to get ahead of the numbers, but based
on those number that you`re describing, as somebody with the polling
background you`ve got, do you expect this to be a North Carolina-only
phenomenon? Or do you expect this to be the kind of thing that you`re
going to see in other states that have a similar demographic profile?
JENSEN: I think this is something that at least for now, is the case
across the country. Basically, every single poll that`s come out in every
state over the last two or three weeks or nationally has shown Donald Trump
in the top two or three. And, you know, one thing that was particularly
fascinating about this poll, Rachel, John Kasich was at zero. Bobby Jindal
was at 1.
Some of these people, really well-established, substantive
politicians, just aren`t getting any momentum, while we see Trump doing
well in state after state after state, because he is willing to say the
things that really appeal to the most conservative base, even if they`re
things that just destroy Republicans for a general election.
MADDOW: Tom Jensen, director of Public Policy Polling, director of
polling at PPP, thanks very much for helping us make sense of all this.
Fascinating findings. Good to have you here. Thank you.
JENSEN: Thanks, Rachel.
MADDOW: All right. The industry of making fun of Donald Trump is
reborn. We have a lot more still ahead tonight.
Stay with us.
MADDOW: We`ve got a story coming up that we started reporting on
last night. We do not know the answer to this story but it is very
important that you get the update. Anyway, it does not involve cocaine.
Despite everything they`re saying on FOX News, it does not involve cocaine.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I knew there were dictators around the world,
but did you know that some of the dictators now apparently, allegedly, are
drug addicts as well. That may explain a few things. Hugo Chavez now
admitting in a speech that went wildly undocumented by the way, that he
chews coca every morning and also eats something called coca paste.
By the way, it`s addictive and he gets it from the dictator in
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you say?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is coca.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, coca. Cocoa would be fine.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: Apparently, there`s somebody at the FOX News channel whose
job it is to stand on the side of the set and say things like, it`s not
violins on television. It`s violence on television. It`s violence. And
they all go, oh, violence is a different story then. That would be fine.
Thank God for FOX News. If they didn`t exist we`d have to invent
them and tell people that is what right wing TV is like.
On the subject of coca, cocoa, Copa Cabana, whatever, today, Pope
Francis landed in Bolivia, the capital city of which, La Paz, is the
highest altitude national capital in the world.
The Bolivian culture minister told minister told the press that in
advance of the pope`s visit to La Paz. the Vatican reportedly specifically
requested that coca, not cocoa, coca leaves be made available for his
holiness during his trip. And yes, the coca leaf is what you make cocaine
from. But in Bolivia, the leaves are also used legally both as a mild
stimulant and also to treat altitude sickness.
The Vatican has said that Pope Francis might chew coca leaves and he
might not. Quote, “The pope will do what he thinks is right.” Well, the
pope has now safely landed in La Paz, Bolivia. We do not know if he chewed
the coca leaves to alleviate altitude sickness. We don`t know. He might
have. Everybody, freak out.
The other big news today about the pope, though, is American news.
The pope is coming to the U.S. in September. On September 24th, he will be
the first pope to address a joint session of Congress, very exciting.
September 24th. Speaker John Boehner announced today that they are going
to arrange a, quote, “inauguration-like setting” at the capitol while he is
there so people can watch his address in person. They`re going to put up
big jumbotrons all along the National Mall so people can go to Washington
while he`s there.
Apparently, they are also organizing basically a place for the pope
to appear in person to greet the public from the worst front of the
capitol. So people can watch the speech he will give on the House chamber
on the jumbotrons or TV, but Speaker Boehner wants to send him out to the
people from the worst front of the capitol. Doesn`t sound like the nicest
place to send the pope now that I think about it, but the plan –
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: West front.
MADDOW: What`s that?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: West front, not the worst front. The west front
of the capitol.
Oh, that would be fine.
MADDOW: Best new thing in the world today – this is Vinnie “The
Chin” Gigante, former mob boss in the Genovese crime family for 25 years.
Vinnie apparently got his nickname “The Chin” because the way his mother
said his full name, Vichinzo and it stuck. It was even in his obituary.
“Mob Boss Vinny `The Chin` Gigante Dies”.
This is not an uncommon way to get a moniker. The wrestler-turned-
actor Dwayne Johnson is never referred to as just Dwayne Johnson, he is
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. His full name incorporates his wrestling
So, it`s a common thing. It`s not always a nice thing. The practice
of bestowing a nickname can be twisted in a way to attach the person`s most
notorious utterances to their identity. So, Richard “I`m not a crook”
Nixon, former Delaware Senate candidates, Christine “I`m not a witch”
O`Donnell, or Rick “man on dog” Santorum.
Well, now, the latest form has been cast. Donald Trump has always
been quotable and speaks in quotable sound bytes on purpose. Now that he`s
running for president in part by keeping up a constant patter of insults
and inflammatory claims about immigrants, it was probably inevitable that
something like this would happen. It happened today.
The people at “Fusion” have developed an app, a little extension
program for Google Chrome, which is called the Trump Web. If you use
Chrome browser, you download this free thing for it. Once you have this
thing running, every time you see the name Donald Trump online, almost
anywhere, you will not only see his name, the app will insert in to his
name one of his accurate, if occasionally unbelievable quotes.
So, here`s how it works. So, “New York Times” “The wasted gift of
Donald a `My Twitter has become so powerful` Trump.”
“Washington Post,” “Jose Andreas backs out of restaurant in Donald
`I don`t want to say screwed but I screwed him` Trump`s hotel.”
MSNBC, “GOP candidates slammed Donald `Stay and we keep the oil`
Trump`s offensive immigration stance.”
It also works on tweets. Te original tweet from Senator Harry Reid,
“Donald Trump`s comments on immigration are distasteful and disgusting.”
Here`s the same tweet on Trump web. “Donald `The U.S. has become a dumping
ground` Trump`s comments are distasteful and disgusting”, or hit refresh
and it comes this way, “Donald `I`m starting to wonder myself whether he
was born in this country` Trump`s comments on immigration are distasteful
and disgusting.” Hit refresh again, “Donald `I`m more honest and my women
are more beautiful` Trump`s comments on immigration are distasteful and
disgusting”. I can do this for hours.
If you look at Donald Trump`s own Web site on Trump Web, it works the
same way. `Show your support for Donald `Laziness is a treat in blacks`
Now, there`s a way to undo this app if you get tired of seeing it,
honestly the Internet is more useful if you keep it installed. God bless
“Fusion” and the Trump Web. It`s the best new thing in the world today.
That does it for us tonight. We will see you again tomorrow.
Now, it`s time for “THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL.”
Good evening, Lawrence.
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