The Rachel Maddow Show, Transcript 11/3/2016

Spencer Ackerman, Steve Schale

Date: November 3, 2016
Guest: Spencer Ackerman, Steve Schale

CHRIS HAYES, “ALL IN” HOST: That is “ALL IN” for this evening.

THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: God bless you, Chris Hayes. I`ve got to say,
I`m not a Cubs fan, but they won last night, I was teary on your behalf.

HAYES: You sent me an all-caps e-mail which I greatly appreciated.

MADDOW: Yes, within moments. Man, congratulations. Thanks for that.
That was awesome.

HAYES: Thank you.

MADDOW: And thanks to you at home for staying with us for the next hour.
Happy to have you here.

Donald Trump`s largest donor is this guy. His name is Robert Mercer. He`s
a hedge fund zillionaire and a Republican activist. Robert Mercer and his
family have put more money into the effort to elect Donald Trump president
than anybody else in the country. In this election cycle, one of the ways
Robert Mercer spent his money was by funding one of the many Republican
super PACs that played a role during the primary process this year.

Robert Mercer funded his own super PAC and the person put in charge of
running it was Kellyanne Conway, who you know. She`s now very famous, very
widely recognized as the campaign manager for the Donald Trump campaign.
When Kellyanne Conway got that job, when she became Donald Trump`s campaign
manager, she had to quit her old job running the Robert Mercer super PAC.

So, then the Mercers had to replace her, the guy they hired to replace her,
the guy they hired to run their super PAC once Kellyanne Conway left to go
to the Trump campaign, was this guy, his name is David Bossie.

But very shortly after they put him in charge of the super PAC, he also
left the Mercer family super PAC to go work for the Trump campaign just
like Kellyanne Conway did. He became the deputy campaign manager to
Kellyanne Conway.

Robert Mercer is also reportedly the principal funder of is a website that`s on kind of a ragged, slightly unnerving
edge of the conservative media, depending on where you`re coming from.
They`ve been around for a while.

But if you want a little flavor of what is like in the
conservative media universe, is these guys. “Birth control
makes women unattractive and crazy.” Breitbart famously called
conservative commentator Bill Kristol “a renegade Jew”, for the crime of
not supporting Donald Trump.

After the massacre at a black church in Charleston, South Carolina, where
nine black churchgoers were killed in cold blood by a white supremacist who
fetishize the Confederate flag, responded to that massacre
with this. Hoist it high and proud, the Confederate flag proclaims a
glorious heritage.

The editors are also seemingly encouraged to make as big a
splash online as they can. One of their editors very famously banned from
Twitter altogether after he led an online campaign of racist and sexist
abuse against the comedian Leslie Jones. In general, Breitbart`s whole
take on the “Ghostbusters” movie that featured Leslie Jones was that it
shouldn`t have been called “Ghostbusters”. It should have been called
“weightwatchers”. That`s what Breitbart`s like.

When Donald Trump said that if he is elected president, he`ll ban all
Muslims from the United States, that struck most people not just as on
scene but also kind of obscure, right? Where did that come from? Seemed
like a nutty idea. Where would somebody even get that idea? If they were
going to propose that in a political campaign.

It turns out, that`s not a nutty idea at You look at their
online footprint, and it`s like, oh, #deportallMuslims. Not that you can`t
come here if you`re a Muslim but if you`re Muslim here already, we`ll find
you, run you up and deport you. Immigration is terrorism forever until
you`re conquered. Close the borders. No immigration whatsoever.

British settlers and their descendants built civilization. Indians never
bothered to build more than a few teepees. Slaves built the country as
much as cows built McDonald`s. This is Notice, see the
word “slaves” has scare quotes around it, that they weren`t really slaves.

So, that`s a little flavor. That`s

Donald Trump`s biggest donor, Robert Mercer, is also reportedly the main
funder of The head of took leave from the
publication as the same time Kellyanne Conway came over from the Mercer
super PAC to become campaign manager. He took leave because the two of
them at the same time were installed at the top of the masthead for the
Trump campaign, the same time Kellyanne Conway from the Mercer super PAC
became campaign manager, the head of became the campaign CEO.

So, from two Mercer-funded outfits came the campaign manager and the
campaign CEO, from the and from the Mercer super PAC. I
should also mention the next name down the masthead, deputy campaign
manager used to run that super PAC funded by the Mercer family.

So, you`re getting the sense, right? Something to like connect desperate
dots and this case, the dots are like here, here and here. It is like this
is a very, very tight-knit thing. This is an orderly thing to understand.
Robert Mercer and the Mercer family and the Trump campaign.

Robert Mercer and the Mercer family also fund something that`s called the
Government Accountability Institute. And that sounds good, right? Sounds
like a kind of generic good government thing.

It`s not a generic good government thing. It`s a right-wing activist group
that is run by the head of and running the Trump campaign.
It`s also run by this person. This person runs the Government
Accountability Institute with Steve Bannon. He`s also himself a senior
editor at, and both of those jobs are both funded by the same
hedge fund zillionaire, by Donald Trump`s biggest donor.

And with that support, working for those organizations, all funded by this
one guy, this guy from the Government Accountability Institute, this editor
at, he wrote a book and you`ll be very surprised to learn
this book spins some very elaborate, very damning conspiracy theories about
Donald Trump. No, no. Just kidding. Not about Donald Trump.

Obviously, the book is about how terrible, terrible, terrible Hillary
Clinton is. And then once he produced this anti-Hillary Clinton book with
all these elaborate theories about Hillary Clinton`s terribleness, after he
wrote this book, Trump`s campaign chief, this guy`s boss at Breitbart, the
guy who used to run, he decided to turn it into a movie of
the same name.

It`s all very neat and tidy, right? It`s all of a piece. It is all one
freaking donor, a specific pedigree of this one corner of the conservative
media world and now the Republican presidential campaign that doesn`t
really look much like anything else in Republican politics.

I mean, this is, yeah, super right wing stuff but it`s not in a lot of ways
not normal Republican messaging. It`s unusual. Banning all Muslims from
the country, right?

I mean, this is the corner of the conservative media world that says
Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan is secretly working for Hillary Clinton.
And he has been for months and he must be destroyed.

Also, they maintain that every Republican you might have ever heard of not
named Donald Trump must be destroyed. Everybody from John Boehner to Eric
Cantor to Paul Ryan to John McCain. In all of those
guys, they aren`t just the household name Republicans that have led this
party, who every American has heard of if they care about politics. In land, all of those folks are traitors, they`re evil secret
liberals who must be destroyed. has campaigned for primary challengers against John McCain,
against Eric Cantor, against Paul Ryan, against John Boehner. They were
the ones who led the online media campaign to throw John Boehner out as
speaker of the House.

Incidentally, I should also tell you that maintains that
everybody in America needs to be aware of the rising threat of eco sexuals,
people who have sex with trees. People are doing it with trees, you guys!
It`s terrible. Eco-sexuals.

And incidentally, if you`re attracted to that story, you might notice on
the side bar there, get your own copy of the anti-Hillary Clinton book.
Give us your email address and we`ll send you the DVD version of it in case
you don`t read. Hurry. Act now while supplies are limited.

Actually, I don`t think supplies are limited at all. I think they have a
lot of them and probably have multiple copies if you want. Just give them
some fake e-mail addresses.

This week, “The New York Times” and “Wall Street Journal” reported there`s
been I guess you`d call it like a breakout. There`s been a breakout from
this otherwise insular little corner of conservative media
and political activism. Those two papers reported that apparently there
are fans, they are true believers, there are
people who buy this stuff who are working inside the New York field office
of the FBI.

“The New York Times” and “Wall Street Journal” first to report that the New
York field office of the FBI used that anti-Hillary Clinton book and DVD of
the same name from the guys and editor and his boss who`s now
the head of the Donald Trump campaign, the one funded by Donald Trump`s
biggest donor, right? They actually used that anti-Hillary
Clinton book as their source for launching a local FBI inquiry into Hillary
Clinton. That was their evidence. That was their research.

These agents in the New York field office reportedly decided that they
needed to look into what was saying about Hillary Clinton.
All sounds terrible. Sounds totally legit. We should look into that.
We`re the FBI.

It had previously been reported that New York FBI agents had brought this
anti-Hillary Clinton-Breitbart stuff to a meeting – excuse me. Brought
the anti-Hillary Clinton stuff to a meeting with career Justice Department
prosecutors back in February and one of the participants in that meeting
described it as, quote, “one of the weirdest meetings I have ever been to.”

But all we knew before now was that they had brought some stuff of Hillary
Clinton and Clinton Foundation to that meeting. We now know, based on this
current reporting what the New York agents brought prosecutors at meeting
wasn`t just generic anti-Hillary Clinton stuff or Hillary Clinton stuff
they had cooked up on their own. No, it was this stuff that had been
cooked up at Breitbart. It is the stuff that came from the eco-sexuals
having sex with trees website.

That is what they had, that is what they brought to career Department of
Justice prosecutors and reportedly the current prosecutors were like, oh,
where you did you get this? I`m not sure that`s a case.

Thanks to Lord knows whatever`s going on apparently inside that New York
field office of the FBI, that little adventure which is now reportedly
over, that little adventure of the readers inside this one
FBI field office, that`s what`s out now in today`s news five days before
the election. That`s what was breathlessly reported on FOX News last
night, “based on FBI sources”.

It`s breathlessly reported on FOX News as a whole new Hillary Clinton FBI
investigation, one that was definitely going to lead to an indictment. FOX
News since walked back that part about it, definitely leading to an

But the Trump campaign is still running with it anyway. New investigation,
Hillary Clinton definitely going to be indicted.

And, of course, you know what? Do you blame them? Of course the Trump
campaign is running with this. You would expect them to. I mean, they
bought and paid for it.

The donor who is mostly funding the Trump presidential effort bought and
paid for this. I`m not saying it hyperbolically. Trump`s biggest donor
paid the people who created the story to create the story. And so, of
course, the Trump campaign is going to use it.

But it`s one thing to cook up a, you know, dubious conspiratorial political
attack and fling it at the opponent. It`s another thing altogether to cook
up a dubious conspiratorial political attack like this and have the FBI
fling it at your opponent. That`s a different thing.

And that is what the FBI, at least part of the FBI, is now doing in this
election. They`re using stuff from apparently as their
research, as evidence and then they`re leaking about their new
investigation into this evidence to FOX News right before the election.

And here`s the really creepy part. Here`s the prospect that the anti-
Clinton Breitbart readers in this one office of the FBI, they`re not just
leaking it to the FOX News, not just leaking this stuff to the conservative
media. Here`s the prospect they`re leaking it to the Trump campaign

Wayne Barrett, great writer, writes today for “The Daily Beast” today, he
points out that this was Trump campaign adviser Rudy Giuliani on FOX News
two days before FBI Director James Comey sent his bombshell letter to
Congress about Hillary Clinton`s e-mails this past Friday.

This was Rudy Giuliani on FOX, unprompted, bringing this up on this own,
two days before the FBI Director James Comey sent that letter. Watch this.


RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NYC MAYOR: He`s got a surprise or two that you`re
going to hear about in the next two days. I mean, I`m talking about some
pretty big surprises.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I heard you say that this morning. What do you mean?

GIULIANI: You`ll see.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Stay tuned. Rudy Giuliani, you`re lucky because we
got to go. I`m out of time. I`m not going to keep pressing you.


GIULIANI: We`re not going to – we`re – we`re not going to go down and
we`re certainly not going to stop fighting. We`ve got a couple things up
our sleeve that should turn this around.


MADDOW: We have a couple things up our sleeve that should turn this
around. You`re going to hear about, we`ve got a couple of things – you`re
going to hear about over the next couple of days, I`m talking about some
pretty big surprises. That was Rudy Giuliani two days before the director
of the FBI sent that letter about Hillary Clinton and the e-mail
investigation that landed like such a bombshell in this campaign and
arguably has put the presidency back in reach for Donald Trump.

Rudy Giuliani two days before that saying we have a couple of things up our
sleeve. You are going to hear about some things over the next couple of
days, some pretty big surprises.

How did Rudy Giuliani know that? Did somebody at the FBI leak to the Trump
campaign two days in advance that the FBI was about to throw an anti-
Hillary Clinton grenade into the presidential race?

Today, Mark Hosenball at “Reuters”, he`s really good investigative
reporter. Mark Hosenball reported at “Reuters” tonight that when the FBI
director sent that letter to Congress about the Clinton e-mail thing,
quote, “he was driven in part by a fear of leaks from within his own

Quote, “Two law enforcement sources familiar with the FBI`s New York field
office said a faction of investigators based in that office is known to be
hostile to Hillary Clinton.”

Over at “The Guardian” newspaper today, their national security editor
Spencer Ackerman, who`s a great reporter, Spencer reports this, quote,
“Deep antipathy to Hillary Clinton exists within the FBI.” This is
according to multiple FBI sources speaking to “The Guardian”. That deep
antipathy has spurred, quote, “a rapid series of leaks damaging to
Clinton`s campaign just days before the election.”

One currently serving FBI agent tells “The Guardian”, quote, “The FBI is
Trumpland. Clinton is the antichrist personified to some person – some
FBI personnel and the reason they`re leaking is that they are pro-Trump.”

The FBI would not comment for “The Guardian” story. They would not give a
comment to Mark Hosenball and his reporting about New York`s FBI field
office, essentially trying to throw the election in favor of Trump. But
that`s where we are right now.

If part of the FBI is a fan club and they`re trying to use
the FBI, the power of the FBI to throw the election in Trump`s favor, how
does Clinton fight back against that? How does anybody?

Joining us now is Spencer Ackerman, national security editor with “The
Guardian” newspaper.

Spencer, it`s nice to see you. Thanks for being here.

much for having me, Rachel.

MADDOW: This current agent has told you the FBI is Trump-land. Read that
reporting tonight along with this reporting we also got from Mark
Hosenball, specifically naming the FBI, New York field office. We have had
other reporting from other sources pointing fingers at the New York field
office saying if you want to – basically to know where the leaks are
coming from and where the political impetus for them is coming, it`s that

Is it in your reporting, in your estimation, is that the right place to
work or a more widespread thing you`re reporting on?

ACKERMAN: I would say it`s more widespread thing. The New York field
office is a particular locust, particularly when you look at its
connections to Giuliani as “The Daily Beast” reported today. Really
powerful story there.

But a lot of this seems to be rather widespread, seems to be rather
persistent within the FBI itself and now, it`s something that their
Director Jim Comey is having to deal with.

MADDOW: And you`ve got FBI sources, law enforcement sources coming to you
talking about this. I`m not – I`m not – obviously, I`m not asking you
anything about – to point at your sources but is – is part of what`s
happening now that there are some folks within the FBI who are concerned
about the political interventions that are being made by some people within
the FBI? Is that why people are talking to reporters about this?

ACKERMAN: A couple of levels in this. First, there are people within the
FBI and in law enforcement circles that are very disturbed that in
particular the FBI appears to be throwing its lot in with Trump, especially
when you look kind of broader at national security circles, senior levels
of the military, officer corps, very much afraid of Trump. Very much
against, you know, to the degree that they can be without being overtly
political. Not on board certainly. Same thing with a lot of people within
the CIA and around the intelligence community.

So, it`s somewhat anomalous and striking that there are people, this
sympathetic to Trump in such a high profile way.

And then there`s a kind of broader sense from within the FBI that this
intervention that we saw with Comey on Friday with this very vague
innuendo-filled letter is crossing a Rubicon, a threshold is crossed in
American politics where now something much more familiar to the decades ago
history of the FBI with J. Edgar Hoover essentially controlling a lot of
people`s political fates with innuendo. No one thinks it`s that far, but
if it rhymes in that kind of history it creates a great deal of anxiety.

And one more thing about this.


ACKERMAN: There aren`t a lot of people within the FBI that I`ve been able
to find and people sort of in law enforcement circles and intelligence
circles and even in political circles broadly who knows how this ends, who
knows how the FBI walks this back, who knows what the FBI will behave like
if Clinton is elected or even if Trump is elected.

MADDOW: Right. What`s the relationship between the FBI as an agency and
the FBI director with the new president once the FBI is known to play a
role, an overt political role in trying to get one side elected. To that
point in terms of how this ends, I`m wondering how this ends just over the
next five days.

Do you have any reason to expect to hear more politically motivated leaks
in either direction from the FBI over the next five days?

ACKERMAN: They seem to be coming every single day now. I mean, this has
been – it`s been an intense weekend. I have to tell you, when I started
reporting this story, I didn`t think it was going to lead to someone saying
the FBI is Trumpland or using the FBI with a description, you know, rhyming
with Portlandia. That, you know, in my experience, a lot of people at the
FBI are sober professionals and to hear that this is the way things have
developed really was very striking.

MADDOW: Yes. And they`re using the power of that agency as a political
op. It`s – this is a big deal. Spencer Ackerman national security editor
with “The Guardian” – Spencer, I haven`t seen you in too long. It`s
really good to have you back.

ACKERMAN: Thank you so much, Rachel.

MADDOW: Thanks, my friend. Great reporting.

All right. Lots to come including a big scoop exclusively here. We`ve got
a story that`s going to break tomorrow morning. We`ve got it here first
tonight. It`s an impressive visual associated with it, and that`s coming
right up. Stay with us.


MADDOW: I love this story.

Russia only has one aircraft carrier. They have one aircraft carrier.
It`s old and it`s called the Admiral Kuznetsov. Unlike most modern
aircraft carriers that use fancy high-power catapults to basically
slingshot aircraft into the air, the Admiral Kuznetsov is old-school. It`s
also just old.

The Admiral Kuznetsov doesn`t have a catapult system to fling aircraft into
the air. So instead, look. See how its nose goes up. It`s a baby ski
jump at the end. It`s basically buck tooth. The ship`s bow curves up.
That`s what its planes rely on to get airborne because they don`t have a

One Russian aircraft carrier is diesel powered. So, it`s pretty. It
belches this thick black plume of smoke wherever it goes, which is not

I should also tell you that once you`re on board, the ship`s plumbing
reported to be so bad nearly half of the toilets are out of commission at
any one time and that`s bad no matter where you are but really bad when you
have a 1,700-member crew living in that confined space.

Russia, I`m sure, is psyched to have its one aircraft carrier. One is
better than none. But they`re one aircraft carrier kind of sucks. When it
sets sail, there`s so much fear that Kuznetsov might sink along the way or
that it might get stuck or stall out that everywhere it goes, see that boat
there and see how little that is? That`s the – that`s their aircraft
carrier`s tug boat. It goes with it, tugs alongside the carrier wherever
the carrier goes, just in the event it breaks down and needs a push,
because that happens often.

And that is what makes this really interesting. Because starting last
month, Russia`s one aircraft carrier and its battleground group, including
its tug, they set sail for Syria to go take part in Russia`s very
controversial military campaign in the middle of the Syrian civil war.

Given the Russian aircraft carrier`s history of problems, anybody who knows
about the Kuznetsov has been frankly waiting to see if it was going to make
it all the way there. It`s a long sail. This is the first time they`ve
even tried to put the aircraft carrier in a combat situation. There have
been fears that it would conk out even before it got in theater.

Well, today, a website called Ukraine Today made some headlines today
posting this article. Russian aircraft carrier towed in Mediterranean.
And we have not misspelled Mediterranean in our headline. That`s the way
it appears in the article.

Quote, “Satellite photos published by DigitalGlobe project showed the ship
stopped moving, says the carrier is being towed to a Russian support point
and then there`s a satellite photo which at first glance does seem to show
the Russian aircraft, the Kuznetsov being towed by another vessel.

Don`t believe it. Don`t believe it. This is fascinating. We reached out
to the U.S. Naval Institute today. Their experts told us they`re 100
percent sure, nearly 100 percent sure that the aircraft carrier not
actually being towed in this picture.

For one thing, if it was being towed it would be being towed backwards in
this picture and it`s almost apparently impossible to tow something as
large as an aircraft carrier backwards. More importantly, there are no
wakes visible in this photo. If it`s an active tow, both ships would be
moving, there would be wakes behind them you can see.

We also think that the boat that appears to be doing the tugging here, we
don`t think it`s a tug boat. We think it`s an oiler which is basically a
floating gas tank and probably refueling the aircraft carrier. This is not
the configuration that an American aircraft carrier would be in getting
refueled but this might be how the Russians have to do it.

And our friends at the U.S. Naval Institute think that`s what`s happening
in this photo. Thinks they`re gassing up, not necessarily being towed,
although everybody`s waiting for that to happen at any moment.

The Admiral Kuznetsov has not collapsed at sea, at least not yet. Despite
what you might have seen today. Russia`s one terrible aircraft carrier
with the buck tooth front and the rest of it is still chugging away towards
the war in Syria.

I should also tell you that Russia`s one terrible autocratic leader is also
reportedly still chugging away toward trying to influence the U.S.
presidential election and that, and unbelievably surprising detail about
that, is something that we have gotten an exclusive scoop about tonight.

This is a story that`s going to break tomorrow. We`ve got it tonight.
This is something nobody else has at this point. That`s next. Stay with


MADDOW: OK. This is exclusive to us. “Newsweek” reporter Kurt Eichenwald
has been on a bit of a tear of investigative reporting concerning Donald
Trump this year. His first cover story blast in the late part of the
campaign was a groundbreaking story about Donald Trump`s foreign business

You might remember, that`s the story where we learned that Trump`s plan for
dealing with the business conflicts of interest becoming president, his
plan for dealing with that is to let his family run his business instead of
himself, which, of course, wouldn`t resolve those conflicts of interest at
all. They would just be about his family instead of about him.

Then, a couple weeks after that we got this from Kurt Eichenwald in
Newsweek. The Castro connection, how Donald Trump`s company violated the
U.S. embargo against Cuba. Kurt Eichenwald had just had these two big
swats against Donald Trump in the form of “Newsweek” cover stories over the
last several weeks.

Well, tonight, we have got scoop number three. And we have got it
exclusively. This, ready? This is the “Newsweek” cover story breaking

“Why the Russians are backing Trump.” And then you see the sub head there?
“Inside Putin`s complex gambit to weaken the NATO alliance.” This is the
new cover story set to publish tomorrow in “Newsweek”. It`s a Kurt
Eichenwald joint once again and we have obtained an advance look at some of
this story – some of its lead and some of its details.

I have to tell you, I`m going to be a little bit wooly to quote this and
describe some of the rest of it because we here at MSNBC we have not
obtained the entire article. We have pieces of it. We have
characterizations of the rest of their reporting and this is “Newsweek”
reporting. This is not NBC or MSNBC reporting but I want to tell you what
we have obtained and I want to tell you that some of it is red hot.

According to what we have seen, “Newsweek” is going to report tomorrow this
remarkable detail of Donald Trump and the Russian government. “Newsweek”
as far as we understand it going to report tomorrow that after Donald Trump
publicly insulted the Khan family, the family whose son was killed in Iraq,
Russian government officials busy hacking documents trying to influence the
U.S. election, they briefly freaked out after Donald Trump insulted the
Khan family because the Russians assumed that Donald Trump would be forced
to drop out of the race.

According to “Newsweek`s” reporting, the Russian assessment of that
political problem that they were worried that that fiasco, with insulting
the Khan family made Donald Trump appear psychologically unsuitable for the
presidency, that that was something he could not come back from and he
would be forced out, forced to drop out of the race. “Newsweek” further
reports that briefly because the Russians thought they were going to lose
Trump as basically their chosen candidate in the election, the Russians
stopped at that time, they temporarily stopped feeding hacked e-mails and
documents back out at the U.S. to try to influence the election.

Basically, the idea is that if it wouldn`t benefit Trump anymore, if Trump
was going to be replaced by Lord knows who, well maybe they wouldn`t be so
good to Russia. So, they held tight for a little bit. Stopped leaking
hacked documents back into the U.S. market when they thought that Trump
might be about to be thrown out of the race.

The “Newsweek” report that`s due tomorrow also discusses Donald Trump`s
distrust of American intelligence, specifically about Russian hacking of
the DNC and Russian hacking to influence the election. “Newsweek” will
report tomorrow that U.S. allies in Western Europe are worried that they
won`t be able to trust Donald Trump as president if he`s not believing what
intelligence tells him.

Now, this is the part where I`m going to wrote directly from the “Newsweek”
article. This is what we`ve got from them that I can quote you directly.
A former British official says, quote, “a lot of people are trying to
connect the dots of all the data in the intelligence files to try and
understand Trump. They`re certainly are a lot of conspiracy theories
bandied about and concern of Trump`s head and whether we would be able to
work with him.”

Eichenwald reports at “Newsweek”, quote, “Officials in Western Europe say
they`re dismayed they feel compelled to gather intelligence on a man who
could be the next president of the United States but they believe they have
no choice. Moscow is seen as a direct threat to their interests, both in
its aggressive efforts to reshape global alliances and its power to inflict
extreme damage in Western Europe. For perhaps the first time since World
War II, countries in Western Europe fear that the American election should
Trump win could trigger events that imperil their national security and do
irreparable harm to the alliances that have kept the continent safe for

Imperil their national security and do potentially irreparable harm.
Western European spy agencies collecting intelligence on Trump to try to
understand that what they perceive to be that threat to them about his
potential election.

This is the third investigative bombshell in a series of them from
“Newsweek” and their investigative reporter Kurt Eichenwald. It will be
out in full tomorrow. Those excerpts we just read, we`ve got those
exclusively tonight.

We`ll be right back.


MADDOW: I got a really nice thank you note today from a friend of a friend
saying one of the things that she likes about the show is that sometimes I
give a warning if I`m going to show something that is gross or vulgar or
offensive happened in politics or the news today. Thank you note said
basically thanks, I watch with my kid and I`m grateful for that warning
because some of the stuff I don`t want to show my kid.

So, that was nice to hear. I`m glad that that thing we do on the show
sometime, I`m glad that has been helpful. That said, what I`m about to
show you now, this is something from today`s news that is gross, that is
offensive, but it is not the kind of gross or offensive that might make you
want to cover your kid`s eyes. Your kid should be fine with this.

The thing to cover up here is your sense of civic decency, because this
will definitely offend that. Have you seen any of these online?

Save time, avoid the line. Vote for text from home.

These ads have been popping up all over social media and claim to be paid
for by Hillary for President 2016. Some of them even appear in Spanish
which is particularly nice.

There are lots of different kinds of ways to suppress the vote, right? You
can cut the number of polling places, the number of days for early voting,
require new kinds of I.D. and paper work in order to vote you know people
don`t have.

But trying to convince people to vote by e-mail or they can vote by email,
or they can vote by hashtag or they can vote by text? That`s vile. You
cannot vote by text. You cannot vote by e-mail. You cannot vote by
hashtag. You cannot vote by a Facebook post.

There`s no phone number you can call in order to cast your vote. Anybody
who tries to tell you any different is lying to you about that and they`re
lying to you for the worst possible reasons. I know it`s the end of the
campaign and I shouldn`t be surprised, but that stuff is disgusting.


MADDOW: Behold, your president and the osprey swoop. The osprey swoop
comes from the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. Their mascot`s
the Osprey. Ospreys are fish hawks. They swoop down from on high and snap
fish up out of the water with their amazing talons.

Ospreys are also known for their huge wingspan. The average Osprey
wingspan is like five feet across or something.

And from that wide winged swooping badass raptor comes the University of
North Florida signature fan gesture which is the of osprey swoop. And you
can tell somebody prepped President Obama on the osprey swoop before he
went to the University of North Florida to urge everybody there to vote for
Hillary Clinton.


Before I get started, I was taught that before I do anything else, I got to
do a swoop.


Come on.


MADDOW: Come on. The osprey swoop.

Even if we hadn`t had the strategic swooping today, crowd goes wild. It
was just a huge day in the campaign. Five days out. Shear number of
events on the schedule, candidates themselves, al of their biggest
surrogates campaigning all over the country.

Hillary Clinton just wrapped up a huge rally in Raleigh, North Carolina,
with Bernie Sanders and Pharrell Williams. In Phoenix today, Tim Kaine
held a rally with the speech entirely in Spanish. Clinton campaign says
the first time a candidate on a national ticket has ever done that.

On the Republican side, Ted Cruz hit the trail for the first time for
Donald Trump. Ted Cruz appeared in Iowa today along with Mike Pence. At
that event, Ted Cruz refused to say Trump`s name, even though it was a
Trump event, which is nice and insulting at the same time. And that is Ted
Cruz in a nutshell.

In Pennsylvania, the northern Philly suburbs, Melania Trump, Mrs. Donald
Trump, she made her first solo appearance of the whole campaign.


MELANIA TRUMP, WIFE OF DONALD TRUMP: Love for this country is something we
immediately shared when I met Donald. He loves this country and he knows
how to get things done. Not just talk. He certainly knows how to shake
things up, doesn`t he? Donald Trump, with your help and God`s grace, will
make America great again.


MADDOW: The would-be first lady of the United States, Melania Trump,
speaking today.

Today, we also had the actual serving president in Florida. He made two
separate stops. Did the swoop, Jacksonville, in Deval County, President
Obama lost that county twice by little. Democrats are hoping to keep
things at least close again there this year.

President Obama also went to Miami where he won twice by double digits.
This year, the Clinton campaign is looking strong in South Florida in the
early vote. President Obama today did his best to roll up more votes
there. You could tell from the vote early signs from the rafters. And you
could also tell from his speech.


OBAMA: You don`t have to wait until Election Day to vote. What does that
say up there? I`m sorry. I can`t hear you. What`s it say up there?

You know, I`m still not hearing it. What, what?

Vote early!

You know, there are times where history is movable, where you can make
things better or worse. This is one of those moments. And it`s in your
hands. This incredible power that each of you have.

Hillary Clinton will move us forward if you give her a chance. And if we
win Florida, we will win this election. It is in your hands! So, go out
there and vote!


MADDOW: History is movable. It`s in your hands. We know what it looks
likes to have the campaigns doing everything they possibly can to win the
race, right? But in order to see if it`s working, for that you have to
talk to people super, super close, not just to the action but to the data
and we`ve got a very special, very specific look at that, next.

Stay with us.



OBAMA: If you got one person who you know is not qualified and you got
another person who is eminently qualified, the only thing that`s left to do
is vote. The only thing left to do is vote!


MADDOW: President Obama speaking in Duval County, Florida, this afternoon.
That`s part of the Florida that usually leans Republican. Democrats hope
to if not win there at least keep it close there.

Joining us now, Steve Schale. He`s a Democratic strategist who run
President Obama`s Florida campaign in 2008.

Steve, it`s nice to see you. Thanks for being with us.

be on again.

MADDOW: So, you have been, I would say, slightly bullish, slightly
positive on Democrats` chances in Florida up to now. How do you think
things are going in the state right now?

SCHALE: Yes, I think they`re going well. Saturday I was a bit down on it.
But what we`ve seen over the last two or three days is an explosion of
turnouts among African-Americans and Hispanics. At this point in the
election, there have been 170,000 more Hispanics that have voted early
yesterday than in the entire 2012 election.

So, you know, it`s shaping up to be a much more diverse electorate than
four years ago, and that`s good news for us.

MADDOW: How much of the electorate in Florida has voted already by your
estimation. We`ve seen the raw vote numbers in terms of how many votes
cast. But what proportion of the electorate do you think that is?

SCHALE: Well, so we had about 4.8 million voters through last night,
probably another 3,000 or 4,000 more today. We`re pushing what is likely
60 percent turnout already in. I think by the time we get to Tuesday,
we`ll be close to 70 percent if not a little over of all the votes that are
going to be cast in the door.

So, the good news for Floridians and Americans, I think we`ll know pretty
early on Tuesday night how Florida is going to go.

MADDOW: You know, given that – those are remarkable numbers, by the end
of the weekend, we`d be at 70 percent of the Florida vote already cast.
Given that, one of the things that Jon Ralston has been being raising in
Nevada is he keeps saying, listen, there`s so much early voting happening
in Nevada, polls don`t matter. Look at the early vote. Look who`s turning
out to early vote. Polling at this point is irrelevant, because so much of
the vote is already cast.

Do you think that`s the way to look at Florida too?

SCHALE: Yes, I think so. I mean, first of all, almost every poll that`s
come out in the last three or four days has been within the margin of error
of the other one. So, there`s varied instances in sample.

What we do know again is we`ve got, you know, 50 percent, 55 percent of
state already voted. Republicans and Democrats are basically in a dead
heat. We`re seeing record Hispanic turnout, very strong African-American
turnout. Here`s a number for you – 100,000 more Democrats who have no
voting history or just a little bit of voting history have voted more than

So, things like that are better indicators of where the electorate`s going
to end up than looking at a poll that shows a one-point movement here or

MADDOW: Yes, it`s one thing to watch every twist and turn in the election,
and news about the election at this point. But watching those numbers rack
up, top 30 million and keep on going in terms of early vote, that`s – the
election`s already under way.

Steve Schale, Democratic strategist, thanks for your time tonight, Steve.
Good to see you.

SCHALE: Thanks again, Rachel.

MADDOW: All right. We`ll be right back. Stay with us.


MADDOW: Tonight, I will be on the “Tonight Show” with Jimmy Fallon. I
wore my glasses, a totally ill-fitting jacket, not this one, and I got an
unexpected civics lesson from Jimmy. Watch.


MADDOW: The thing to watch at this point, first thing to remember is that
more than 30 million people have already voted.


MADDOW: So if stuff happening in the last few days is going to influence
what happens in the election for those 30 million people, they can stop
paying attention. It`s fine. They`ve already cast their vote.

FALLON: No, because Donald Trump said we could actually change our votes.
He tweeted out, you can change your vote in six states. And if you realize
– he did this once with “Dancing with the Stars,” when Kate Gosling, it`s
the same thing, and in some places it is legal.


MADDOW: I did not know that about “Dancing with the Stars.” You never
know where you`re going to get your education.

That`s tonight on NBC. We`ll be right back. Stay with us.


MADDOW: OK. This is propaganda. Really, obviously, it`s propaganda from
an Iraqi group fighting. They made this propaganda video of themselves to
counter ISIS propaganda.

This video they made, it shows Iraqi soldiers storming into Mosul. It`s
got a lot of slow-mo. It`s got dramatic music, and there`s this one
soldier who`s kind of the main character in this video who`s got that scar
in his cheek.

And he enters into the city and spies a Christian church. He sees that the
doors are locked on this church, and he uses the sledge hammer that he`s
using to destroy the lock and open the doors to the church. Because the
idea is that the door has been locked since these totalitarian monsters
took control.

Throws the doors open, walks down the aisles to the altar, puts down his
gun, kneels in the church, the bells ring and all these people pour into
the church, presumably Iraqi Christians who`ve been locked out of their
church because ISIS has occupied their city for tow years.

And the video ends with a scream in Arabic that says Mosul`s bells will
ring again.

So I mean, this is propaganda, very over the top propaganda. I think
particularly for a western audience and Christian audience, it is
nevertheless an evocative thing to see.

I mean, one important thing to say is that Mosul in Iraq is that Mosul is a
very diverse, very culturally rich city. Military offensive to take back
Mosul started a couple weeks ago, and what I am about to show is you is not
propaganda. It`s the real thing.

We`ve gotten in new images from Reuters, Reuters news service, and what
they show, in fact, is the largest Christian church in Iraq, the grand
Immaculate church near Mosul, a huge Catholic cathedral built in the early
part of the 20th century, it`s a landmark, physically, it`s a landmark
culturally and religiously in terms of diversity in Iraq.

Before ISIS, 3,000 people would go to Sunday mass there and these are
photos of the first mass being said after ISIS occupied that city for two

The battle for Mosul isn`t over. Iraqi special forces are still pushing
their way into the city. Once that battle is won, the battle against ISIS
is still not going to be over. The tenuous time and a tenuous place, but
this is a nice thing to see. We`ll see what happens next.

That does it for us tonight. We`ll see you again tomorrow.


Good evening, Lawrence.


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