Crowd boos 2020 candidate Delaney. TRANSCRIPT: 6/3/19, The Rachel Maddow Show.
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Yes, it is remarkable. I mean, I come back to
this time and again. The America first campaign, the America first
president, who is putting American interests behind the interests, quite
frankly, in front of all of us, of Mohammed bin Salman who runs the Saudi
Jennifer Rubin, thank you very much.
JENNIFER RUBIN, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: You`re welcome.
HAYES: That is ALL IN for this evening.
“THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW” starts right now.
Good evening, Rachel.
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Thanks, my friend. Much
HAYES: You bet.
MADDOW: Thanks to you at home for joining us tonight. Happy to have you
This is the largest U.S. air base in the Middle East. It is a logistics
hub for ongoing U.S. operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. It is a key asset
for the U.S. military in terms of its air power, among other places in the
Syrian civil war and in every engagement and training mission in the
is a huge base. There`s like 10,000 or 11,000 American personnel. And it
is all the more striking the size and the import of the space given what a
small place it is in, because this huge U.S. air base is located in the
tiny nation of Qatar. This really big American outpost in that very small
country, which sticks out like a thumb into the Persian Gulf right off the
coast of Saudi Arabia, right next to the United Arab Emirates.
And, of course, America has complicated and textured relationships with
every major country in the Middle East. But with Qatar, we do have this
one very special thing, right? In that we`ve got this huge air base there.
There are a ton of active-duty service members, American service members,
who live there all the time, right?
That special thing about us and Qatar was what made it a weirder than usual
moment in the Trump presidency when just a few months after he was sworn
in, President Trump summoned the courage to try to pronounce Qatar live and
in front of some cameras, I think for the very first time ever. The reason
that he decided he would take the leap and try to pronounce Qatar was so he
could proclaim them to be a bunch of terrorists.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The nation of Qatar
unfortunately has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: And this was a somewhat random occasion for the president to bring
this up. He was standing there in the Rose Garden. You might not
recognize the flag behind president Trump there.
He was standing there in the Rose Garden with the president of Romania when
that thing about Qatar, or as he calls it “ka-tawr” (ph) popped out of his
mouth like a loose denture.
It was also strange, though, because that comment about Qatar appeared to
be completely disassociated from anything else going on in U.S. policy at
the time. I mean, to put a very fine point on how weird it was, that the
president decided that day he was going to denounce Qatar as a bunch of
terrorists. I mean, literally, less than a week later, the U.S. government
sold Qatar a whole bunch of F-15 fighter jets, $12.5 billion worth of
So where did that thing come from from Trump that day, with him apropos of
nothing denouncing Qatar, denouncing this country that has the largest U.S.
air base in the Middle East, this key U.S. ally in the Middle East? Why
did he say that? Well, who knows exactly and for sure? But if you start
flipping through the rap sheets, literally the criminal history of some of
the people associated with this president and his campaign, you may get
pretty close to a story that explains it.
Elliott Broidy was a top fund-raiser for Donald Trump during the campaign.
He was then named deputy finance chair of the National Republican Party
after Trump became the party`s nominee for president. Elliott Broidy also
narrowly avoided prison time when he became a cooperating witness back in
the day after he was caught paying an elaborate and brazen series of bribes
to financial regulators in New York state, along with their family members
and their mistresses. That`s that sort of a record was apparently not a
barrier for entry into the upper echelons of the Trump campaign in 2016 and
into the upper echelons of the Republican Party in the Trump era.
At the Trump inaugural festivities, Elliott Broidy, of course, was there
and at the inauguration, he reportedly hooked one another Trump-connected
ex-con who the “New York Times” reports would go on to take frequent
meetings. Sorry, “The New York Times” reports had taken frequent meetings
throughout the campaign with Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner and might
Flynn after the inauguration, during the first year of the Trump
administration. This guy was also reported to have spent lots of time at
the Trump White House including multiple visits to Steve Bannon`s office
just off the Oval.
His name was George Nader. And his criminal history included multiple
convictions for child pornography and child molestation in two countries,
resulting in at least two prison sentences.
So when Elliott Broidy, the guy who had narrowly avoided prison in the New
York state bribery scheme, and George Nader, the multiply convicted child
pornography and child molestation guy, when they met up at Trump inaugural,
that was clearly a match made somewhere other than heaven. But they hit it
off and those two men after meeting at the Trump inaugural reportedly
decided they would go into a kind of business together. Because George
Nader had long-standing connections to two gulf monarchies, to the united
Arab emirates and Saudi Arabia, those two countries quite near Qatar that
we just showed on the map.
Nader at various points appears to have been a paid emissary of some kind
of diplomatic go-between for the royal families of both UAE and Saudi
Arabia. According to landmark reporting from “The Associated Press”, the
basic deal that Elliott Broidy and George Nader hatched after he had met up
at the inauguration was that Nader would use the connections he had with
the royal families in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, he`d use
those connections to get huge contracts from those countries for Elliott
Broidy. Broidy was operating some kind of defense contracting firm. Nader
was planning to hook him up with a huge amount of contracting revenue, like
a billion dollars in contracts from UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Was that because his defense contracting firm was the greatest one on earth
and ought to have those contracts? I don`t know. But this is what Broidy
was reportedly going to do in exchange for him getting those contracts. In
exchange for those billion dollars worth of contracts Broidy, right, this
deputy finance chair for the RNC, leading fund-raiser for the Trump
campaign, Broidy would use his influence with the new Trump administration
to get the administration to do things that the U.S. government would never
otherwise be inclined to do, but that Saudi and United Arab Emirates
Specifically, in exchange for his company getting a billion dollars in
contracts, Broidy would reportedly try to persuade the Trump administration
that the president should start talking smack against Qatar, that the U.S.
government should turn against Qatar, that the U.S. government should
separate itself from and start denouncing Qatar, where we have that huge
air base, right? Qatar, this crucial U.S. ally in the Middle East, the
biggest U.S. military outpost anywhere in the Middle East.
Those other Gulf countries right next to Qatar, though, UAE and Saudi
Arabia, they see Qatar as their archenemy. They want to turn the U.S.
government against Qatar. How much would they be willing to pay for that?
Almost anything presumably.
Well, George Nader and Elliott Broidy reportedly teamed up after they met
at the Trump inauguration to try to give those countries someone to pay in
order to achieve that result. And that result the president himself
inexplicably delivered in the Rose Garden standing right next to the
president of Romania on a fine June day in 2017, just months after he was
inaugurated, out of the blue inexplicably denouncing Qatar as terrorists.
It`s almost like you could pick any day on the calendar, you could pick any
day the Trump administration has been in effect, just pick one thing that
happened that day. If you then go back and tell the full back story as to
what led to that moment in the Trump administration and what cast of
characters made that moment possible – I mean, if you cast it really well
and you got like George Clooney or Ben Stiller to direct it, you could make
a movie about any day of the Trump administration that had a plot that was
more scandalous than anything that has happened in any other U.S.
presidential administration since there were cars. Or like since there was
America. I mean, just the president making those – anyway.
But now these kinds of trailing ends and the fuller back story on these ex-
cons and these revealed schemes, they`re all starting to come to some
dramatic conclusions. When it comes to that seedy little plot to
apparently pay for the U.S. government turning against our ally Qatar,
well, Elliott Broidy, he is no longer the deputy finance chairman of the
RNC. He stepped down from that position after is it was revealed he made
hush money payments to a “Playboy” model with whom he`d had an affair.
Oddly, his hush money payments were brokered by the presidents long-time
attorney Michael Cohen and another man named Keith Davidson, the two guys
who were involved in hush money payments before the election arrangements
for which Michael Cohen is now serving his own federal prison sentence and
for which he too had to step down as deputy finance chairman of the RNC.
Broidy himself has also reportedly come under federal investigation for
among other things, offering to have the Justice Department investigation
into a huge international fraud case turned off. Broidy was offering a
contract in which he said that he could get that investigation quashed if
the interested parties would pay him and his wife $75 million. Now, why
Elliott Broidy believe that he could turn off a major Justice Department
investigation in exchange for tens of millions of dollars? I don`t know.
But that is one of a number of issues for which Elliott Broidy has
reportedly come under investigation.
Nice folks from the Trump campaign. Nice folks from the Trump-era
Republican National Committee.
Now, as for Elliott Broidy`s business partner in that Qatar thing, well, as
of today, he has a new and newly serious additional child pornography
charge to contend with. Devlin Barrett and Rachel Weiner at the
“Washington Post” were first to break the news today that George Nader has
been indicted again on new child pornography charges stemming from an FBI
search of his three iPhones at Dulles Airport in January of last year.
These charges we now know have been pending against Nader for months. But
apparently, he`s been out of the country and therefore out of the reach of
U.S. federal law enforcement despite this sealed criminal complaint against
him and a sealed warrant for his arrest that were filed with the court last
He fell back into the clutches of U.S. law enforcement today when he re-
entered the country. He flew in to JFK airport in the New York City area
reportedly to seek medical treatment. Upon landing at the airport he was
arrested and taken into custody. Today, he made an initial appearance in
the eastern district of New York, which means in federal court in Brooklyn.
The magistrate judge hearing his case said she believed that Nader is a
flight risk. She would not give him bail today. She ordered him held
overnight and reassessed tomorrow.
He is expected ultimately to be conveyed to Virginia, to the Eastern
District of Virginia, where he will face these new child pornography
But as I said, these types of charges are not a novel thing for George
Nader. In 1985, he was charged with importing child pornography into the
United States. He ultimately had that charge dismissed on a technicality.
A few years later, in 1991, he was again charged with importing child
pornography from overseas. In that case, he was convicted. He was given a
Years later in 2003, he was sentenced again, this time in the Czech
Republic, this time not for child pornography but for child molestation.
That conviction also resulted in a prison sentence in the Czech Republic.
Despite that extensive record, though, George Nader did become some kind of
adviser to the government of the United Arab Emirates and the government of
Saudi Arabia. And he did then attach himself like a barnacle to the Trump
campaign and the Trump White House, where he really made himself one of the
guys. He was apparently around a lot.
In August 2016, during the presidential campaign, George Nader organized a
meeting at Trump Tower which ultimately became the subject of this
blockbuster report in the “New York Times”, this time last year.
At the Trump Tower meeting where George Nader, Donald Trump Jr., Erik
Prince, and a man named Joel Zamel who was reportedly offering at that
meeting an off the shelf foreign election interference effort that would be
run by Mr. Zamel`s Israeli company and would be financed by some of these
Gulf monarchies that Mr. Nader worked for, all to benefit the Trump
campaign by flooding American social media and what amounted to a giant
psy-ops campaign to turn off Clinton voters and boost Trump. That`s what
he was offering. The Trump campaign, of course, says they weren`t buying.
“The Times” reports that after that meeting, George Nader became a frequent
presence around the Trump campaign, he took multiple meetings with Jared
Kushner and with Michael Flynn and with Steve Bannon. After Trump got
elected in November of that year, George Nader reportedly made a $2 million
payment to one of Joel Zamel`s companies. Again, Zamel was the guy who had
been offering a foreign election interference effort for sale at that Trump
tower meeting back in August. And again, the Trump campaign says they
didn`t buy what he was offering. But still, Nader paid him $2 million
right after the election, and that payment has still never been explained.
That same month, December 2016, George Nader is the one who organized
another meeting, this one involving Jared Kushner, Mike Flynn, Steve Bannon
and the crown prince of United Arab Emirates who`s usually described in the
west by his initials, MBZ. That meeting took place in New York at the Four
Seasons Hotel. Again, this is right after the election, December 2016.
And that meeting became a flashing red light for the Obama administration
at the time because it was a big breach of protocol. It was a strange
thing for the crown prince of this U.S. ally, the senior government
official, in fact the de facto ruler of that country, to come visit the
United States without telling the current administration that he was going
to be paying a visit. It`s a very unusual thing. It`s not the way these
things are usually done.
But in fact, that meeting that George Nader organized in December 2016, it
involved the crown prince of the United Arab Emirates there in person plus
all of those Trump transition officials. It was conducted as a secret
thing. United Arab Emirates did not notify the Obama administration that
he was coming in. They found out anyway that MBZ was here and that he took
that meeting; but knowing that he had secretly come into the country to
take that secret meeting set off alarm bells for the Obama administration.
A month after that in January 2017 just before the inauguration itself,
George Nader set up another meeting. And this time it was in an exotic
locale. It was in the Seychelles islands. George Nader is the one that
organized that strange encounter where Erik Prince, the brother of Betsy
DeVos, who`s the education secretary, the founder of the controversial
security firm Blackwater, a man who`s described in the Mueller report as
essentially being an informal representative of the Trump transition.
He met with the head of a Russian sovereign wealth fund in Seychelles
islands in a meeting that was set up by George Nader. That meeting is now
believed to have been yet another effort by the Russian government between
the Russian government and the Trump campaign to try to set up some sort of
back channel secret communications between the two. Nader set up that
meeting in the Seychelles as well.
The crown prince of the UAE was there. MBZ was there. Erik Prince was
there, the guy from the Russian sovereign wealth fund was there as an
emissary of the Kremlin. Nader is the one who brought them all together.
That`s January 2017.
Later that month, Donald Trump is sworn in and becomes president. “Axios”
goes on to report that George Nader becomes a frequent visitor in the Trump
White House. During that first year that Trump is in office, that`s when
Nader and Elliott Broidy are apparently trying to pull off this scheme
where Broidy will get paid a million dollars of contracts in exchange for
him using his influence to turn the president, to turn the U.S. government
against Qatar, despite the fact we have this big air base there.
And then as we are rolling up on the one-year anniversary of Trump being in
office, in January of 2018, George Nader apparently makes plans to travel
to Mar-a-Lago to attend what were expected to be over-the-top festivities
at the president`s private club in Florida to celebrate his first year in
office. On his way to Mar-a-Lago, George Nader has to transit through
Dulles Airport just outside Washington. Now, whenever he does that he
probably has prison sentence flashbacks because back in 1991, one of the
times he was prosecuted on child porn charges, the way he got caught in
1991 is that customs officials found child pornography on reels – on reel
to reel tapes that were concealed in candy containers in his luggage while
he was flying in from Germany and trying to pick off his luggage in Dulles.
They went through his luggage, they found the child porn that led to those
1991 charges and the prison sentence thereafter.
This time, January 2018, again he`s going through Dulles. And this time
child porn was not on reel-to-reel tapes that he had to secret somewhere
inside his luggage. This time, his newer stash of child porn was allegedly
stored on his multiple iPhones. And unluckily for George Nader, when he
was transiting on his way to Mar-a-Lago in January 2018, the FBI agents who
stopped him at the airport had a search warrant, to look into his luggage,
to search his person and to search his electronic devices.
Now, it appears that those search warrants related to the Mueller
investigation, to Mueller looking into foreign interference in the 2016
election. Today`s FBI affidavit filed in the new criminal case against
Nader describes those search warrants as being unrelated to child
pornography. So child porn is not what they were looking for when they
stopped and searched George Nader at Dulles Airport last January when he
was on his way to Mar-a-Lago. But child pornography is nevertheless what
the government says they found.
And so, to the already absolutely sordid and somewhat terrifying tale of
George Nader, you can now add this new twist. I mean, we know from the
context provided by the Mueller report that basically immediately after the
FBI agents stopped Nader at Dulles Airport in January of 2018, immediately
after that contact where they stopped him on his way to Mar-a-Lago, George
Nader almost immediately became a cooperating witness for Mueller. Nader
is all over the Mueller report, particularly when it comes to the section
of that report that describes efforts between the Russian government and
the Trump campaign to use various intermediaries to create secret back
channel communications between the two entities.
Even this weekend in “The Times”, there was new reporting about how
prosecutors are still investigating whether MBZ and the United Arab
Emirates might have been involved in some kind of illegal influence
operation concerning the 2016 election and the Trump campaign. But what
does this mean that George Nader has now been arrested? I mean, it had
been widely reported in multiple reputable news sources that when Nader
started cooperating with Mueller`s investigation he was doing so under a
grant of limited immunity, he was getting immunity in exchange for his
Mueller`s report says in black and white that all but one of the interviews
that Nader did with the special counsel`s office were under the umbrella of
some sort of proffer agreement, meaning that Nader would have had some sort
of immunity in exchange for the testimony that he was giving to Mueller.
But if that all is true, if Nader had worked out some sort of deal with
prosecutors to avoid being charged for his own crimes, why did they draw up
a sealed criminal complaint and arrest warrant for him in April of last
year? That`s the complaint, an arrest warrant they acted on today when he
re-entered the country.
If he had some sort of immunity deal with prosecutors, what was the
immunity for? I mean, what was he not charged for if he was charged for
this? I mean, these child pornography allegations he`s facing, prison time
for this is a range of 15 to 40 years. He didn`t get immunity for this but
he did get immunity for something else?
Or was he awarded immunity for these alleged crimes too but for some reason
that immunity deal that he had has now been called off either because of
something that he did or because of some change in the way the Justice
Department is looking at it?
George Nader has been one of the most unnerving characters and ex-cons in a
Trump campaign that frankly is full of them. He was also a crucial witness
for the Mueller report, including on a number aspects of that investigation
that as far as we can tell have not yet been wrapped up.
News of his arrest today is horrifying in many ways. It is also kind of a
shock. The reporter who broke the news first joins us next.
MADDOW: The day after the election in November 2016, the morning after the
election, we now from Robert Mueller`s report that somebody whose name is
redacted sent a text containing this phrase. The phrase, quote, “Putin has
won.” That phrase was texted to a Russian businessman, to the head of a
Russian sovereign wealth fund, a guy by the name of Kirill Dmitriev.
Soon after Kirill Dmitriev received that message about the U.S. election
result, Putin has won, that same businessman, the guy who`s the head of a
sovereign wealth fund, Kremlin-connected, sort of Kremlin emissary business
guy, he responds to that “Putin has won” text by turning around and texting
somebody else. He texts a guy named George Nader to say, hey, I want to
meet all of the key people in the incoming Trump administration given the
Quote: Later that morning, Dmitriev connected Nader who was in New York to
request a meeting with the, quote, key people in the incoming
administration as soon as possible in light of the, quote, great results.
So, here`s a guy who`s working for the Kremlin running a Kremlin-backed
Russian sovereign wealth fund. He gets this message, “Putin has won.”
That`s the response to Trump winning the election. He is super psyched
that Trump won the election.
Right after receiving the “Putin has won” text, he turns around that same
morning and thereafter he decides he needs to be connected to the key
people in Trump`s world ASAP. Who does he call to make those connections
to introduce him to all the key Trump people? He calls a guy named George
George Nader is the guy who was just arrested today on child pornography
charged as he landed at JFK airport. That`s one of the threads involving
George Nader that`s described in the Mueller report and in open source
reporting. His arrest today is in keeping with his previous criminal
record. But given what else is going on in terms of the Mueller
investigation and the Russia scandal, the news of his arrest today at JFK
airport was a shock.
“The Washington Post” reporter who broke that story today is Devlin
Barrett. He joins us now.
Mr. Barrett, it`s great to have you with us today. Thanks very much for
DEVLIN BARRETT, NATIONAL SECURITY REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Thanks
for having me.
MADDOW: So you and your colleague Rachel Weiner were first on this story
Do you – do you have any understanding of whether or not Mr. Nader knew
that traveling back to the U.S. today would result in him being arrested?
BARRETT: It`s pretty clear that from everything that`s happened in the
last 24 hours, that he did not know this was coming. This wasn`t some sort
of arranged surrender or, you know, negotiated deal between Nader and the
government because what happens is he`s arrested at the airport and then
they proceed to have a bail hearing in which he very clearly is trying hard
to come up with some conditions to get released on bond. And so far, that
hasn`t happened but there`s going to be another hearing tomorrow.
But my point is if there had been some arrangement or some expectation that
this could be even possible, it wouldn`t have gone down like this. It
would have gone down in a much different way.
MADDOW: So there`s been previous reporting that, obviously, Mr. Nader was
a Cooperating witness with the Mueller investigation. He is described
including his multiple discussions with special counsel`s office and FBI
agents described and footnoted throughout volume 1 of the Mueller report,
there`s been a lot of reporting that he cooperated with the government,
with those prosecutors, with some sort of immunity deal, at least a limited
Does our understanding of that previous reporting change at all now that
he`s been arrested?
BARRETT: I don`t think it changes a lot but there`s still some gaps that
we haven`t been able to fill in. But, basically, I think the simplest
answer is he cooperated under some sort of proffer terms and we`re told,
gave testimony to the grand jury and technically – and basically most of
the time when you have a proffer, what you`re talking about is you agree to
tell your story to prosecutors with the understanding that you`ll only be
charged if you are caught lying to them.
And so that is the basic premise of most proffer sessions. And so, at that
point, we have every reason to believe that was sort of the general
condition of the Nader conversation, although we`d certainly like to know
more and get the particulars of this. But my point is, it`s entirely
possible and what it looks like so far is that Nader had some sort of
understanding with prosecutors to talk about things like the meeting in the
Seychelles, but not necessarily in a way that would expose him to any sort
of criminal charges unless he lied to them.
MADDOW: So, forgive me for being dense. In part I`m distracted because
Nader is part of so many different plots and so many storylines here, not
many of which we feel like we`ve gotten to the end of. But is it possible
that Nader would have done the type of immunity deal where he was not going
to be prosecuted, where they agreed to not prosecute him for any of the
things that he was describing to them related to the subject of their
investigation, but this child pornography stuff was totally outside the
realm of what they were talking to him about? They obviously had evidence
of this from their first contact with him in January of 2018.
Is it possible that he would have done a cooperation deal without this –
with this stuff carved out knowing that he was still liable to be
prosecuted on this stuff?
BARRETT: It`s a great question. I think the parts we can answer are this.
It basically appears that by February of – so Nader arrives – let`s back
up. Nader arrives in the United States January of 2017. I`m sorry,
January 2018. He is questioned by NBA agents working for Bob Mueller`s
In February, the following month, those agents realized that one of the
phones they`ve seized has this child pornography video on it allegedly,
several videos according to the chart, the criminal complaint. So, in
February of that year, they have some sense there`s a problem here that
goes way beyond just the Mueller issues. But they don`t have a full
chargeable case on him until April. And what seems to have happened is he
seems to have left the country by April.
And now, because he came back, apparently thinking as best we can tell that
he had no – he was no longer in danger, then he gets charged.
MADDOW: OK. So, he did his cooperation, he testified to maybe the grand
jury, certainly talked to Mueller`s investigators, between the time that he
was initially picked up in January and when they brought that criminal case
against him in April.
MADDOW: So he may have thought enough time had passed that he was out of
the woods. Let me just ask you one other piece of this Devlin. Obviously,
part of the intrigue about Mr. Nader is that he appears to have been a
little bit of a go-between for some Kremlin connected figures like Kirill
Dmitriev and the campaign. He also directly appears to have been directly
working on behalf of the United Arab Emirates and the Saudi government in
terms of some other kind of overtures they were making to the Trump
campaign and later the Trump administration.
Do you have any understanding from your reporting as to what happened to
Mueller`s inquiries related to the Emirates and Saudi Arabia and whether or
not they may have also been involved in any sort of improper foreign
BARRETT: Well, they certainly – they certainly looked at this. And what
you see from the report is the investigators are really focused on the
Seychelles meeting and the Russian official, Dmitriev, and how that played
into it. But obviously, that`s probably not Nader`s main focus considering
who he works for and where he lives.
But I think what`s interesting about that whole sequence of events is what
seems to happen according to investigators is at some point, that meeting
in the Seychelles happens and then after that meeting, basically the
meeting doesn`t go well. It`s an attempt to establish a back channel as
far as we can tell that just falls apart because the Russian official
Dmitriev doesn`t seem to much like Erik Prince and doesn`t seem to trust
him as a good go-between and it all sort of falls apart from there.
So, the relationship seems to go sour and go south pretty quickly after
MADDOW: Devlin Barrett, national security reporter at the “Washington
Post” – thank you for helping us understand this, and congratulations on
the scoop today.
BARRETT: Thanks for having me.
MADDOW: All right. Much more to get to tonight. Stay with us.
MADDOW: This is one of those days when in addition to everything that has
happened in the news, there`s also a bunch of stuff that is about to happen
that we`ve been sort of watching for and waiting for all day and into this
evening. One of the things we`ve been watching for involves the criminal
case about Trump`s national security adviser Mike Flynn.
A couple weeks ago, the judge in the Flynn case ordered prosecutors to
produce specific documents and make them public, including the transcripts
of Mike Flynn`s calls with the Russian government during the presidential
transition. These are the calls about which Flynn later pled guilty to
lying to the FBI about them. Well, the dealt for federal prosecutors to
have complied with that order and released the transcript of Flynn`s
conversations with the Russians was this past Friday.
Sort of amazingly, prosecutors didn`t comply with that court order. They
didn`t release the transcript of Flynn`s conversations with the Russian
government. Judges don`t tend to like it when lawyers don`t do what
they`re told to do by court order.
The judge in Flynn`s case in particular, Emmett Sullivan, beyond I think
the way judges would typically feel about their orders not being followed,
Judge Sullivan in particular has a reputation for not suffering any
shenanigans in his courtroom or in his cases.
But since the prosecutors hit that deadline on Friday and refused to
release that information about Flynn despite the court order, we have been
expecting a response from Judge Sullivan. Thus far we have not yet seen
one. But we`re sort of on tenterhooks waiting for that to happen.
Another thing we`ve been watching for today is whether Roger Stone could
soon be going to jail. Roger Stone is awaiting trial on charges that
include lying to Congress about his interactions with WikiLeaks during the
2016 campaign when they were releasing information stolen by the Russian
You might remember that after his indictment, Roger Stone decided it would
be a good idea to post online a picture of the judge in his case with a
crosshairs next to her head. At which point that judge imposed a very
strict gag order on Roger Stone about his – barring him from talking about
his case and the overall investigation from which his case sprang.
Well, nevertheless, this weekend, Roger Stone decided he had a new good
idea. He decided to go online and call for the death of former CIA
Director John Brennan. He called for Brennan to be hanged for treason,
claiming that the entire Trump Russia investigation that led to Roger Stone
being charged was illegitimate and ought to result in its perpetrators
And I am not a lawyer, but boy, does that seem like a straight down the
middle violation of that gag order prohibiting Roger Stone from talking
about the investigation or his case. So, again, with that one we are
watching to see whether or if the judge in the Roger Stone case will react
to that online posting and whether or not the judge might view that as
having violated that gag order, in which case Mr. Stone could be up against
the risk of going to jail while he awaits his trial rather than waiting it
out at home.
One last thing we are keeping an eye on this evening is not in a courtroom
but in Congress. Last month, former White House counsel Don McGahn, you
may remember he defied a subpoena from Congress. Congress ordered him to
show up and testify. The White House ordered him to not show up and
testify. He decided to go with the White House instruction.
But the Judiciary Committee pressed ahead that same day, issued two
additional subpoenas to other important Mueller investigation witnesses,
former White House communications director Hope Hicks and Annie Donaldson
who was Don McGahn`s chief of staff and who reportedly kept voluminous
notes of all her time in the White House.
The subpoenas to Hicks and Donaldson require them to turn over documents to
the committee by tomorrow morning 10:00 a.m. Now, as of tonight, we have
not heard whether those two witnesses intend to comply. We are expecting
that the Trump White House will presumably order Hope Hicks and Ms.
Donaldson to not turn over documents, just like they`ve ordered other
witnesses to not comply with other congressional subpoenas. So, tonight,
we are awaiting word on whether the White House is going to block them from
hanged over those documents or whether they will just defy them on their
own, whether there will be additional contempt charges here.
I mean, even without Mueller investigation witnesses, the Judiciary
Committee does say they are moving ahead with hearings on the Mueller
report. Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler today announced a series of
hearings in response to the report, starting with someone who knows
something about presidents obstructing justice. Richard Nixon`s White
House counsel John Dean whose congressional testimony blew the Watergate
scandal wide open, he`ll be the Judiciary Committee`s first witness a week
from today because history doesn`t repeat itself but it does rhyme.
The Judiciary Committee, again, trying to get witnesses who are people who
provided evidence to the Mueller report directly. So far, the White House
has either blocked those witnesses from complying with subpoenas or we are
expecting them to. That includes documents we`re waiting on from the White
House this night. We`ll let you know over the course of this hour as we
Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN DELANEY (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We need as Democrats to build an
economy that works. But it`s got to be with smart policies. Medicare-for-
All may sound good. But it`s actually not good policy nor is it good
I`m telling you. I`m telling you. A hundred –
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: John Delaney finally gets his moment in the sun. Now, you will be
forgiven if you do not know who John Delaney is, given the enormity of the
Democratic presidential field this year. I mean, heck, John Delaney is not
even the only moderate Democrat named John who is in the race this year.
So there`s that.
But Mr. Delaney has now made national headlines for the first time for
getting all but booed off the stage at the California Democratic convention
Mr. Delaney was one of just 14 Democratic presidential candidates who spoke
at the California Democratic convention this weekend, 14 of them. This was
the biggest event. This was the largest collection of Democratic
presidential candidates in one place in the whole presidential primary
season thus far.
The reason they all went is because the state is so important in the
primary this year because of its huge haul of delegates. But in particular
because of the combination of its huge haul of delegates and the state`s
new position in the earliest weeks of the primary.
There`s those four early states, right? It`s Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada,
South Carolina. They each get their own week. Three days after South
Carolina is this gigantic Super Tuesday event that includes California,
which has the largest delegate haul of all.
California has not had this kind of importance in choosing a Democratic
nominee in forever. And California voters I think are kind of feeling it.
California Democrats are recognizing that they`re sort of in the catbird`s
seat they haven`t been before.
And they had no problems letting candidates like John Delaney know what
they thought of his criticism of Medicare-for-All. And Delaney was not the
only one roundly booed during this weekend`s events.
Former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper got his share as well.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN HICKENLOOPER (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Let me be clear. If we
want to beat Donald Trump and achieve big progressive goals, socialism is
not the answer.
I was re-elected –
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: Honestly, though, that wasn`t the worst of the reaction for
Governor Hickenlooper. At the end he was forced to kind of like scream
into the void as he got played off stage by the music when his speaking
time was up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HICKENLOOPER: I will once and for all take on the NRA and have universal
background checks on all gun sales. I will stop ignoring the two thirds of
Thank you very much.
(END VIUDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: The hug was probably worth it. At the end, you need to have a
final moment there.
It`s worth – for a taste of what this was like, it`s worth comparing that
to the reception for Senator Elizabeth Warren and her speech in California.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So if you think we
need to be a party of big plans to make this country work for everyone, a
party that has the courage to fight for those plans, then join me. Text
the word “change” to 24477. Help us organize, volunteer to dream big!
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: See, she doesn`t need the hug. You see that?
I mean, if they`re going to start the music when your time is up anyway,
you are going to get played off the stage. But if you`re going to get
played off the stage, there are better and worse ways to do it. There`s a
hero`s way to go out, right?
But honestly, watching the events this weekend in California, maybe the
biggest hero of all, at least for those of us watching from home, was not
one of the candidates who were speaking at the main events, not one of the
invited candidates. It was actually a moderator at a forum for the
progressive group Move On.
(BEGIN VIDEOI CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Next question, Senator. On implementation of your
first big idea on the gender pay gap, not everyone works for corporation.
SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yes.
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, MOVEON.ORG: Hey! Hey, hey, hey, hey.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Settle down.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, hi. Hi. Wait a minute, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Just a few minutes ago asking for your attention to a
much bigger idea than.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you so much, sir, for your big idea. But we
want to make sure that we are able to get through this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: So that young man decided that this was his moment. But there was
somebody else on stage who took control of the situation in an instinctive
and very brave way. That is a boss move putting herself immediately
between Senator Harris and the heckler who just walked up and took the
microphone out of her hands. Not escalating things but also not having it
The boss moderator was honestly the one in control up there until security
augmented by the senator`s husband hauled the guy off stage. But that will
moderator, that as I said, that was a heroic move. I want to talk to her.
She`s here next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AUDIENCE: Kamala! Kamala!
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You`re good.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MADDOW: That was Senator Kamala Harris making her triumphant return to the
stage after a protester jumped up on the stage, took her microphone away
from her at the Move On Big Ideas Forum this weekend.
The star of this moment ended up being the woman in the pink dress.
I wish – we all wish that we would have that kind of presence of mind and
calm, cool collected bravery in that kind of a strange moment.
Joining us now is Karine Jean-Pierre. She`s chief public affairs officer
at MoveOn.org. She`s an MSNBC contributor.
Ms. Jean-Pierre, I appreciate you being here. This is weird circumstances
in which to be talking to you.
JEAN-PIERRE: Yes, it is. It`s been a wild 48 hours, for sure.
MADDOW: Yes, obviously, this is something nobody had any idea was coming.
JEAN-PIERRE: No, absolutely not. I mean, you know, just to explain. We
did have security plan in place. You know, we thought, you know, it`s a
kind of, you know, progressive space and you know, people are very messy.
It`s not surprising there would be a protester, but in the audience, not on
And there was a breach. And it didn`t work out to plan. And I was shocked
when it happened. We all were. And it did not play out the way that we
thought it would, obviously.
MADDOW: You know, the reason I wanted to talk to you about today and I
recognize this is not your work. This is a thing that happened. You had
this admirable and brave response.
When – like I saw this first on Twitter was the first place I saw it. I
instantly burst into tears. I am a softie and I cry at weird moments all
the time. But I – other people I talked to about this moment also had a
similarly very emotional response not just to the fact that this happened
to Senator Harris, but the way that you bodily put yourself in there.
Is that – have people been bringing that to you?
JEAN-PIERRE: Yes, people have brought that to me. They`ve actually said,
you know, it was great that I was there protecting Kamala Harris and I
stood up to do that, but who was protecting me. And I think that`s
something that really touched people. It`s like wow, you put your body in
between her and this person you had no idea what he was doing and what was
he about really.
JEAN-PIERRE: It was totally instinctively. I saw him kind of on the
previously and I saw this person just hurl their body onto the stage and I
thought to myself, OK. Virginia Beach just happened yesterday, where we
lost 12 souls. We have an increase in hate crimes. Things are not safe
for women of color, people of color, in this climate that we`re in
We have a senator who is a woman of color running to be president of the
United States. This is not good. And I just jumped into I guess into
action and I thought, no, he`s coming for her and I can`t let that happen.
Not today. It will not happen.
And so, that`s just where my heart went. That`s where my instincts went.
And I can`t explain it. It`s just – I just jumped to it.
Even when I watch it, even sometimes I`m like that`s not a big deal. I
just stood up because the guy was coming. Everyone was like no, this was a
I do want to say, Rachel, I do want to thank Kamala Harris, because she
came back on stage as you saw. And when she was done answering the
questions, I gave her a hug and apologized.
And you know what she said to me? Instead of saying, oh, don`t worry, it`s
OK. She said, you know what, Karine, I`m proud of you. I`m proud of all
the work that you`re doing.
I looked at her and I`m like that`s the response you`re giving me? Thank
And then she called me yesterday and she – I think it`s OK that I say
this. She called me to check on me and to make sure that I was doing
something normal for myself. And thanked me.
And I thought to myself, Rachel, this is what we`re missing in this moment.
I`m not endorsing Kamala Harris. I`m not endorsing anyone. But I thought
this is what we`re missing right now is someone who cares about people and
shows that they do care where not just a certain sector of the population
And I think that`s the fear people have been having for the last three
years is that they feel their marginalized, their rights will be taken away
and they`re fearful. A friend of mine said to me today, they texted me and
said, you know what, Karine, you just gave me watching that – gave me –
encouraged me to do more. And I`ve been so fearful, I`ve been so scared,
and now, I`m realizing I need to fight and stand up. What can I do in
And I think if that could come out of this, that`s fantastic.
MADDOW: Obviously, as an organizer of this event as the moderator of the
event, you had no intention for this to happen.
MADDOW: It has catalyzed the kinds of conversations you`re describing and
I think also it`s put Move On in the spotlight in a way that`s going to be
important as California and these other states decide what their role in
the primary process.
Karine, thank you for doing it.
JEAN-PIERRE: Thank you so much.
MADDOW: I`m sure it has been a really weird 48 hours since then. But that
instinctive behavior that you modeled there is inspirational.
JEAN-PIERRE: Thank you. Thank you so much. Appreciate it.
MADDOW: All right. Karine Jean-Pierre is chief public affairs officer at
That`s going to do it for us tonight. I will see you again tomorrow.
Now, it`s time for “THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL”.
Good evening, Lawrence.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
Copyright 2019 ASC Services II Media, LLC. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>
Copyright 2019 ASC Services II Media, LLC. All materials herein are
protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced,
distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the
prior written permission of ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter
or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the