The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, Transcript 09/23/15

Maria Teresa Kumar, Rick Wilson, Jonathan Allen, Michael Daly, Matt Malone, Dave Itzkoff

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Many of them are crooks or we can – pressing
or maybe inspiring that here in our country, so many of our high-ranking
politicians end up having mugshots.

Either we can despair because so many of them are crooks or we can rejoice,
we can find joy in the fact that it turns out they`re not above the law
when they are crooks.

Maybe we can rejoice in the fact that so freaking many of them get caught.
Oh, yes, they do. That does it for us tonight, we`ll see you again
tomorrow, now it`s time for THE LAST WORD with Lawrence O`Donnell, good
evening, Lawrence.

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST: Rachel, the big question I`ve always
wondered about is what percentage of them get caught?

Is it like speeders on the interstate where it`s like less than 1 percent
or is it 90 percent?

MADDOW: We need an omniscient guide to tell us these things –

O`DONNELL: We don`t know, we don`t know –

MADDOW: I`ll see if I can get to the pope about it –

O`DONNELL: We`ll be watching tomorrow night, Rachel –

MADDOW: Thanks Lawrence –

O`DONNELL: Thank you –

MADDOW: Thank you –

O`DONNELL: Almost every word the pope says in Washington is being
interpreted as political. Father Matt Malone is here to explain just how
political the pope intends to be.

And at this hour, Donald Trump is in another Twitter war with “Fox News”
after announcing today that he will boycott “Fox News”.

The Trump boycott of “Fox News” is expected to last just right up to the
moment the next time Donald Trump is on “Fox News”.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A lot of happenings over the
last little while.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The frontrunner declared he was boycotting “Fox

TRUMP: I didn`t feel I was being treated fairly and we`ll see what
happens. Last night, I did Colbert, did anybody see that?

STEPHEN COLBERT, HOST, “THE LATE SHOW”: I certainly hope we are shooting
the show in IMAX so we can capture his entire head on camera.


TRUMP: But the ratings were phenomenal.

COLBERT: I`m going to throw you a big, fat meatball. Barack Obama, born
in the United States.



TRUMP: I don`t talk about it anymore.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yet, he keeps bringing it up.

TRUMP: Hillary is a birther. In 2008, she was the original birther.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have been blamed for nearly
everything. That was a new one for me.

LESTER HOLT, NBC NEWS: For Pope Francis, a day that began at the White
House ended at the altar.

spirit. We see a living example of Jesus` teachings.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Francis toured the ellipse in the Popemobile,
blessing the 50,000 along the route.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was a blessing to see him, you know, he waved to us
and we just, you know, felt the energy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But the Pope himself had a special request.






BERGOGLIO: I promise.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He also led the first canonization ever to take place
in America.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ending the day that saw this often bitterly divided
city united in joy.

BERGOGLIO: God bless America.



O`DONNELL: Donald Trump has had it with “Fox News”. No, this time he
means it. This time he`s serious.

At high noon today, Donald Trump went into the Trump war room and tweeted,
“”Fox News” has been treating me very unfairly and I have therefore decided
that I won`t be doing any more “Fox” shows for the foreseeable future.”

In the past, when Donald Trump got mad at “Fox News” for asking him
excellent questions in the first presidential debate, the president of “Fox
News” immediately called up Donald Trump to make peace.

That was a good business move for “Fox News” because Donald Trump is good
for the ratings of any show he appears on, most of which have been “Fox
News” shows.

But today, it seems “Fox News” has had enough of Donald Trump. “Fox News”
released this statement explaining that Trump`s boycotting decision came
exactly 17 minutes after “Fox News” canceled a Trump interview with Bill
O`Reilly scheduled for tomorrow.

“At 11:45 a.m. today, we canceled Donald Trump`s scheduled appearance on
the “O`Reilly Factor” on Thursday which resulted in Mr. Trump`s subsequent
tweet about his boycott of “Fox News”.

The press predictably jumped to cover his tweet creating yet another
distraction from any real issues that Mr. Trump might be questioned about.

When coverage doesn`t go his way, he engages in personal attacks on our
anchors and hosts which has grown stale and tiresome.

He doesn`t seem to grasp that candidates telling journalists what to ask is
not how the media works in this country.”

Less than an hour later, team Trump released a written response, and as
usual, it was all about polls and ratings.

“Mr. Trump stands by his statement made earlier today as a candidate for
president of the United States and the definitive frontrunner in every poll
both nationally and statewide including the just-released poll in the state
of Florida.

Mr. Trump expects to be treated fairly. All you have to do is look at the
tremendous ratings last night from “The Late Show” with Stephen Colbert
where Mr. Trump was the guest or the ratings from both debates to fully
understand the facts.”

Needless to say, the Trump campaign did not explain why TV ratings – what
TV ratings have to do with the facts or for that matter what facts they
were actually referring to.

The Trump boycott of “Fox News” is now ten hours old. And a short time
ago, Donald Trump tweeted that he will be on “Morning Joe” on this network

You can – the – so we can confirm that, that is true. There is some good
news tonight for the people hoping Joe Biden will officially declare his
candidacy for president.

A new “Bloomberg” politics poll shows Joe Biden inching ahead of Bernie
Sanders for the first time and within eight points of frontrunner Hillary

A new “Fox News” poll out tonight shows Donald Trump leveling off in the
lead at 26 percent with Ben Carson at 18 percent, Carly Fiorina and Marco
Rubio tied at 9, Ted Cruz at 8, Jeb Bush at 7.

And, of course, I was joking when I said we don`t know what “Fox News” show
Donald Trump will be on tomorrow, but at the end of his first day of
boycotting “Fox News”, Donald Trump admitted that he wasn`t really going to
boycott “Fox News”.


TRUMP: I have a lot of respect for a lot of the people at “Fox”; Hannity
and Bill O`Reilly and Greta. I`ve had great relationships with the people
at “Fox”.

But I haven`t thought that they`re treating me fairly. And I`ll give you
an example. The polls came out the other day, they were outstanding.
“Fox” didn`t put them up.

So, we`ll see what happens with “Fox”. Well, they`re certainly possible,
I`m sure at some point it will happen. But I didn`t feel I was being
treated fairly and we`ll see what happens.


O`DONNELL: So much for the tough guy stick-to-his-guns boycott of “Fox
News”, it just means he hasn`t yet scheduled his next appearance on “Fox

Joining us now, Rick Wilson, Republican strategist, contributor to “The
Daily Beast” and “POLITICO” and founder of Intrepid Media.

Jonathan Allen, chief political correspondent for Vox and Maria Teresa
Kumar, president of Voto Latino and host of “CHANGING AMERICA” by shift on

Now, there is a latest eruption by Donald Trump, a Twitter war that has
started because of something Rich Lowry said about Donald Trump on “Fox
News” tonight.

Let`s first of all take a look at what Rich Lowry said.


RICH LOWRY, EDITOR, NATIONAL REVIEW: Trump obviously attacks everyone, but
she`s become a much bigger target and I think part of what`s going on here
is that last debate.

Let`s be honest, Carly cut his balls off with the precision –

MEGYN KELLY, FOX NEWS: What did you just say?

LOWRY: Of a surgeon and he knows it.



O`DONNELL: Donald Trump absolutely shocked by the language, of course.
Here`s the Trump tweet. “”Fox News” owes me an apology for allowing
clueless pundit Rich Lowry to use such foul language on TV, unheard of.”

It is unheard of, Maria Teresa, except by the host of “Morning Joe” who
used the same word in the same –


Recently. I personally won`t –

KUMAR: Late night TV –

O`DONNELL: I have only – I`ve only used that word in coverage of the Tom
Brady scandal, I haven`t used it in any other way. But, you know, here we
go with Trump now.

And this time, Trump, of course, is never serious, but “Fox News” seems a
little bit serious this afternoon with the statement they made about him.

KUMAR: Well, I think it`s because they`re tiring of him, and basically,
they`re saying at the end of the day, you and I both know that you need our
TV stations in order to rally up your base.

So, we`re going to turn that off, good luck with you. Because at the end
of the day, that`s one of the reasons why Trump is saying he will go back

Because the only megaphone he has to rally up his base is through “Fox

O`DONNELL: Another tweet by Donald Trump about this: “Incompetent Rich
Lowry lost it on “Fox News”, he should not be allowed on TV and the FCC
should fine him.”

Rick Wilson, Donald Trump once again showing he knows nothing about how
government works and the FCC of course –

outstanding, Lawrence –

O`DONNELL: Can`t fine anyone –

WILSON: And he would –

O`DONNELL: For that – but go ahead, Rick.

WILSON: First, he files this ridiculous cease and desist letter against
the Club for Growth.


WILSON: For a well sourced and –

O`DONNELL: A fake threat to sue –

WILSON: And a well documented –


WILSON: Yes, but fake, right. Like Donald Trump is ever going to go into
discovery with anyone. And secondly, listen, I`ve got to give props to my
friend Rich Lowry.

I thought I had set a pretty high bar by calling Donald Trump an epic
douche canoe, but Rich has really moved it up, I`ve really got to step up
my game now because –



Not on this show, no, this is a family show, Rick.


But no, listen, you and –

WILSON: Remember what –

O`DONNELL: Other Republicans are obviously hitting very high frustration
points with this Trump campaign as Rich Lowry demonstrated tonight.

irrationality of the Trump campaign and the ecosystem he built basically
softball interviews on “Fox” and talk-radio that drove his numbers, you
know, it proves the adage at this point that Roger giveth and Roger taketh

And I think that we`ve reached a point now where the shenanigans and the
name calling and the temper tantrums like a tween girl from Donald Trump
have reached the point where –

KUMAR: That`s not fair to tween girls –


Let me tell you, that`s not fair to tween girls –

O`DONNELL: Yes, that is not fair –

ALLEN: Well –

O`DONNELL: To tween girls –

ALLEN: No, you`re probably right, that`s not fair –


ALLEN: To tween girls –

O`DONNELL: No. But listen, Jonathan Allen, there`s a couple of
interesting dynamics here, one is the business situation for “Fox News”, I
mean, this is all anecdotal on my end.

But I – in Boston, I was talking to a friend of mine, devoted “Fox News”
watcher saying I`m done with them, absolutely done with them.

You know, he hated all the tough questions at the debate, he hates that
they don`t praise Trump constantly.

And to the “Fox Business” side, you know, Roger Ailes might have looked at
this and said, the longer this goes on, the more he`s hurting us with our
base of viewers.

ALLEN: You know, I think there`s actually been a turning point that we can
see with the way “Fox” has treated Donald Trump.

You know, the last time he said he was going to boycott and he got in a big
fight with Megyn Kelly, you saw “Fox” quickly essentially apologizing and -


ALLEN: Want to break bread with them. And now you`re seeing a completely
different attitude from “Fox”. And I actually think what it shows is that
Donald Trump is vulnerable.

I mean, this guy has got the thinnest skin I`ve ever seen on a politician.
I`m not sure how he expects to win the presidency like that. It`s like to
borrow from another network.

It`s like he`s one of these bachelorette candidates, like doesn`t get the
rose, gets a little –


Or the bachelor – or the bachelor –


ALLEN: You know, the way – the way Maria Teresa, I didn`t mean it to be
sexist, I`m just saying, you know, this is – it`s getting – as “Fox”
said, a little tiresome.

O`DONNELL: And you know, the power of “Fox”, I think, is in question in
this campaign season, too.

Because the most fascinating analysis I`ve seen this week about Scott
Walker dropping out is the power of Rush Limbaugh.

Scott Walker was Rush Limbaugh`s favorite candidate until Donald Trump came
along and Rush discovered Trump was his audience`s favorite candidate.

And he is in his business for the ratings. He went with his audience,
abandoned Walker, went with Trump and now there`s no more Walker and Trump
is at the top of the polls.

Rush Limbaugh in this analysis is way more important to Trump than “Fox
News” can ever be.

KUMAR: That`s exactly right. And let`s not forget, the folks that were
backing Scott Walker were the Koch Brothers.


KUMAR: So, which tells you that this is actually – this is going to be a
debate much more than money – incredible ideology. And what the – what
Trump is doing, he`s stirring the pot of an extreme Republican Party.

And that`s one of the reasons why “Fox News” may want to turn him down and
turn down the dial on him because everybody knows that unfortunately he
can`t win the White House if he has just such an extreme individual –
extreme views.

But he`s not going to be able to win the middle of America, which is what
he needs.

O`DONNELL: Jonathan Allen, the power of the Koch brothers as we saw this
week, the power of the $20 million sitting in the Super PAC that you
technically cannot coordinate with turned out to be not very much power for
Scott Walker at all.

ALLEN: No, I mean, his biggest problem obviously is that, nobody felt
allegiant to him in terms of the voters.

I think in the past, what you would have wanted is somebody who is a bridge
candidate between the wings of the party.

But neither wing of the party right now wants a bridge candidate. And so,
a candidate like Scott Walker who I think reflected a lot of the various
positions of Republican constituencies actually turned out to essentially
destroy himself that way.

There was no reason for anyone to rally behind him the way that you`ve seen
some rally behind Trump and others.

O`DONNELL: Jonathan Allen, thank you very much for joining us tonight.
Coming up in the rewrite tonight, the most important question that
interviewers should ask Donald Trump.

And just how political does the pope intend to be in Washington this week?


O`DONNELL: Just how bad a job Carly Fiorina did running Hewlett-Packard
has been well documented and well documented on this program.

But you don`t know it all. There`s another part of what she did there that
Michael Daly is going to tell us about next.

And later in the program, the most amazing viral video of – for me, the
year, where the Boston guy swears at a fish for five minutes.

You`ve got to see this. Sadly, there will be bleeping, but you`ll
understand it.



CARLY FIORINA (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We should want all companies
grow and to succeed and to prosper. That`s how you create jobs, that`s how
you save jobs.

I was recruited to Hewlett-Packard to save a company and we did that and
saved a lot of jobs in the process.


O`DONNELL: That was Carly Fiorina speaking to reporters today in South
Carolina today. “The Daily Beast” Michael Daly has a new piece on Carly
Fiorina`s tenure at Hewlett-Packard.

“Specifically her company is lobbying for the Homeland Investment Act of
2004 which the piece calls “Carly Fiorina`s $4 billion job scam.”

Michael Daly writes, “the purported aim of the legislation was to generate
economic growth and therefore jobs at home by – according to corporations,
a one-year tax holiday on billions in overseas profits they had stashed

U.S. corporations took $265 billion in tax deductions.” But, as Michael
Daly points out, it did not result in the job creation that was promised.

The three biggest beneficiaries cut jobs including Hewlett-Packard which
brought back $14.5 billion from overseas profits but then cut more than
14,000 jobs.

To make it all even uglier, Michael Daly writes, “Hewlett-Packard lobbied
for the Homeland Investment Act as a member of something called the
Homeland Investment Coalition.

This at a time when the war on terror was intensifying and the word
“Homeland” made everyone think of national security.

We had invaded Iraq in March 2003 and there was Fiorina four months later,
party to using Homeland to hustle the government out of billions with false
promises of new jobs.

That may not be treason, but it is close enough to turn the stomach.”

Joining us now, Michael Daly, special correspondent for “The Daily Beast”.
Michael, we thought we knew everything about Carly Fiorina`s tenure.

I had a Yale professor Jeff Sonnenfeld here last week running through
everything she did to collapse the stock price and all that, the value of
the company.

This is a particular outrage for people who really know how tax policy

seems like, you know, kind of your classic corporate – you know, you know,

And then – but when you see that word “Homeland”, I mean, that really – I
don`t know about you.


DALY: But me, I mean, that was the time in 9/11 that all these kids going
over, getting killed and maimed and coming back in coffins.

And you know, you say that word “Homeland” and then all of a sudden they`re
using that word to try to peddle this? That`s what really got me nuts.

And then I think one other thing is everybody is looking at her performance
with the company, but what they weren`t looking at is what she was doing
with other companies to pull off a scam like this.


DALY: I mean, it was billions of dollars and the argument was, oh, well,
you know, we`re going to get this money and it`s going to be research and
development and we`re going to create jobs, it`s going to be good for

Even the Bush White House was saying, you know, forget it. One of the
people on the Economic Council said you might as well fly over Beverly
Hills and start pushing cash out of a helicopter, that`s about how much –

O`DONNELL: And that`s a Republican economic adviser –

DALY: Yes –

O`DONNELL: To President Bush, I would –

DALY: Right before the bill was passed –

O`DONNELL: Right –

DALY: While she`s pushing this bill, you got Republicans in the Bush White
House saying, this is a giveaway –

O`DONNELL: Yes, and wasn`t easy to outrage them –

DALY: Their call to the give –

O`DONNELL: Right –

DALY: Away –


Now, the current Republican frontrunner for the presidential nomination is
a big fan of this kind of giveaway. Let`s listen to him.


TRUMP: Where we have $2.5 trillion sitting outside, can`t come in, and now
what`s happening is companies are leaving this country.

You know, it used to be, you leave New York for Florida or you leave New
Jersey for Texas or something, it used to be state to state, now it`s
country to country.

We have companies with thousands and thousands of jobs that are leaving
this country –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s the Trump –

TRUMP: To go out and get their money –


TRUMP: Let the money come in, tax it at a much lower rate and let the
money come in.


O`DONNELL: Michael, that`s the old song you hear –

DALY: Him – he`s channeling Carly.

O`DONNELL: Yes, and many others before Carly in industry who`ve always
come to Washington saying, oh, you know, we`ve got all these billions
parked outside the country, we`d love to bring them back in but you guys
tax us.

You know, and –

DALY: Well, you got to pay taxes like you and me –

O`DONNELL: Right –

DALY: I mean, you know, I`ve –

O`DONNELL: Right –

DALY: I mean, I got –

O`DONNELL: Right –

DALY: Some money packed in my pocket, you know, and I –


DALY: I`d love to keep it in Luxembourg, but, you know, I can`t, I need it
for the rent. So – but you know – but for him to say that there`s
trillions of dollars out there and that they can`t bring it in – what do
you mean they can`t bring it in?

They can bring it in tomorrow morning, they just got to pay taxes on them -

O`DONNELL: Yes, and that`s – and that`s the game, is to hold it out there
as long as it takes, years of lobbying to get this kind of bill passed so
then we can bring it back in for free –

DALY: You know, interesting study at the University of Kansas did, where
they determined that for every dollar spent lobbying, they got $220 on
average in tax breaks.

I mean, so that`s a pretty good return.

O`DONNELL: And when they get the money, they cut jobs.

DALY: That`s it.

O`DONNELL: That`s an amazing story, Michael Daly, thank you very much –

DALY: Thank you –

O`DONNELL: For joining us tonight. Coming up next, what Pope Francis is
really saying in Washington. What he wants people to hear. Is it really a
political message?

And later, in the rewrite, there is a question to ask Donald Trump that
will go to the heart of the most important possible presidential activity
in the Oval office.

That activity is the finding of fact, the sorting out truth from untruth.
We know how Donald Trump has done that in the past and there`s a right way
to ask him about it now.

And most interviewers don`t ask him about it, but Stephen Colbert did last


O`DONNELL: In a short speech at the White House this morning, the Pope
raised one of the most divisive political issues in Washington; climate


BERGOGLIO: Mr. President, I find it encouraging that you are proposing an
initiative for reducing air pollution.


Accepting the urgency, it seems clear to me also that climate change is a
problem we can no longer be left to our future generation.


O`DONNELL: Thousands lined the streets of Washington to greet the pope,
including 5-year-old Sophia Cruz.

Pope Francis called the little girl to him as she sat on her father`s
shoulders, she gave the pontiff a letter and a T-shirt.

Sophia was born in the United States but her parents are undocumented
immigrants. She and her family traveled from Los Angeles to see the pope
and Sophia also came with a message for the pope.


tell you that my heart is sad and I would like to ask you to speak with the
President and the Congress in legalizing my parents.

Because every day, I am scared that one day they will take them away from
me. I believe I have the right to live with my parents. I have the right
to be happy.


O`DONNELL: Tomorrow, Pope Francis addresses a joint meeting of Congress.
Joining us now, father Matt Malone, editor-in-chief of “America Magazine”,
also with us, Rick Wilson and Maria Teresa Kumar.

Father Malone, everyone watching this is wondering how much of this does
the – does the Pope intend to be political and when he goes straight into
climate change at the White House in Washington, he must have been advised
that this is a hot political issue.

And how much of it does he consider just to be the essence of his

important to remember that the Pope is by definition a political figure.


MALONE: He leads – is the spiritual leader of nearly 1.5 billion people,
he`s a head of state –

O`DONNELL: He has ambassadors.

MALONE: He has ambassadors –

O`DONNELL: He receives ambassadors, yes –

MALONE: He does, right, since the time of Charlemagne, he may have done
that at the Holy See. So, I – but I – while the Pope is a political
figure, he is not a politician in this –

O`DONNELL: Right –

MALONE: That – which would –

O`DONNELL: Right –

MALONE: Right understand that, right?


MALONE: And he sees his job to propose, not impose. And that – and what
he is proposing is what he sees as how the moral mandate of the gospel and
the Catholic social teaching ought to be applied in our contemporary world.

O`DONNELL: And Maria Teresa, we see Sophia being brought to the pope
there. And this is – this is – this girl, this is what Donald Trump
calls an anchor baby.

I want to hear in the next debate how they – how Donald Trump believes
Sophia should be treated, when and how Sophia should be arrested with the
rest of her family and sent back out of this country.

KUMAR: Sophia`s an American, and she`s advocating for her parents. And
sadly, Sophia represents millions of kids that are under 18 years old,
actually having to bring on – shoulder the burdens of adulthood at such an
early age. The fact that we are looking at her – looking at her and not
ashamed that we`re not doing something about it is not only ungodly, but at
the same time, it`s un-American.

And when Trump uses words such as anchor babies, it`s not any different
than saying tar babies. They`re talking – he`s mixing up a pot that unless
the Republican Party actually stands up and puts a mirror to his face
saying what he`s doing, it`s going to get really uncomfortable, and that`s
not presidential.

O`DONNELL Rick Wilson, we have a Republican congressman Paul Cossar who is
going to boycott, he says he`s going to boycott the Pope`s speech tomorrow
because he doesn`t like what he expects the Pope to say about climate
change, which is I suppose is any sentence involving the phrase climate

And I`ve got to say, talking to Father Matt Malone here about it, I
couldn`t be more shocked as catholic educated.


O`DONNELL: Paul Gosar is apparently Jesuit educated. The notion that you
would boycott a speech by the Pope because there`s a – there`s a sentence
or an idea in it that you disagree with politically? I can`t find the
Catholic explanation for that.


WILSON: Well, look, I`m not going to – I`m not going to have a doctrinal
fight about why Paul made that decision. But look I think there`s a
tendency in Washington right now on both the left and the right to project
your desired political outcomes and political believes on the Holy Father.
And I think there`s a certain tendency you know on the left to say, well,
he`s with us on climate change, income, and equality. And on the right to
say he`s with us on gay marriage and abortion.

I think there`s way too much political projection on to the Pope right now.
And his spiritual message gets lost in the shuffle rather significantly in
that because everyone is trying to sort of leverage a political you know
advantage off of what ought to be a primarily spiritual visit. Even though
there is a spiritual aspect to the Pope`s leadership of the Catholic

O`DONNELL: But Rick let me just as you I mean as a republican political
strategist, as a Catholic, what would you have advised Paul Gosar to do, if
he said to you you know I`m going to boycott the speech because I don`t
like what he`s going to say about climate change.

WILSON: Well look I don`t think it will make any significant political
difference to him one way or the other. He made his point about it. And
frankly, it`s – for Catholics, it`s such a unique moment that I would have
had trouble staying away from it regardless of what he was going to say
politically. I like Paul, he`s a good guy, he`s a solid conservative. But
he made a decision on this and like I said I don`t think there`s a bigger
political implication to it. And I think – I think you know that the
climate change argument alone would not be sufficient to keep me away from
it. It`s a unique moment in history.

O`DONNELL: Father Malone, what would you say to Paul Gosar, if someone – a
congressman said to you, I`m not going to go to the speech because I don`t
like what he`s going to say about climate change. Or anything. Let`s say on
the other side a liberal said to you I`m not going to go to the speech
because I don`t like what he said about abortion today in Washington, which
her did say.

MALONE:Yes, I think there`s too much in this country of people saying that
they`re going to stop listening because they don`t agree with people. And
particularly in this context where you have this global religious leader
and a head of state coming to address a joint section of congress, it seems
it`s a basic matter of courtesy and stability to go with an open mind and
open ears.

O`DONNELL: So will tomorrow – how would you describe it? Will this be a
political speech? Will this be a religious speech? What are – what are the
set of adjectives you would expect to apply to this speech?

MALONE:Well I think religious and political are two good ones . I think it
will be both.

O`DONNELL: You`re not shying away from the idea that the pope is here and
will speak politically.

MALONE: No, absolutely not. Because it`s -every Pope, when the Pope
speaks, speaks politically. What he says has political implications. What
we have in this country is a separation of church and state. But the
separation of religion from politics is almost inconceivable. And it`s not
envisioned by our constitutional arrangement or by the founders of this
country. There is a – there is a legitimate place for religion in the –
in the – in the public debate. It tends to bring some sunshine into the
darker corners of the world in which we don`t always shine a light. And it
provides a moral context for the discussion of what our public policy
should be. So no, I don`t shy away with it.


O`DONNELL: The last word on the Pope tonight goes to Father Matt Malone as
is appropriate, I think we all agree (inaudible). Thank you for joining us
Rick Wilson, thank you for joining us.

Up next in “The Rewrite” Donald Trump tries to rewrite history


O`DONNELL: And in the process lies about Hillary Clinton.




COLBERT: Barack Obama, born in the United States. Go. It`s a meatball. It`s
hanging out there. Just right there. Come on!


TRUMP: You want to know-I don`t talk about it anymore.

COLBERT: You don`t talk about it?

TRUMP: I talk about jobs. I talk about our veterans being horribly treated.
I just don`t discuss it.

COLBERT: You know that meatball is now being dragged down the steps of a
subway by a rat right now.

TRUMP: You`re right I saw that.

COLBERT: You missed the meatball.


O`DONNELL: He missed the meatball. Doesn`t talk about it anymore. Here he
is not talking about it today.


TRUMP: And Hillary, who`s become very shrill, you know the word shrill?
She`s become shrill. She was saying what I said about Obama. And yet in
2008, she was the original birther. She`s the one that started that whole
thing. Hillary is a birther. By the way, don`t switch your votes to
Hillary, please. But Hillary is the one that started it.


O`DONNELL: Every time, and I mean every time, Donald Trump talks about
President Obama`s birth certificate, he lies. He lied about it last night
with Stephen Colbert when he said he doesn`t talk about it anymore. There
he was talking about it today.

And then when he talked about it today, he lied about Hillary Clinton. He
said she was saying what I said about Obama. Hillary is a birther. Those
are his words today. Both of those sentences are lies.

Hillary Clinton has never, ever suggested this President Obama was not born
in Hawaii. She has never said what Donald Trump said about the President`s
birth. Donald Trump doesn`t know how to talk about the President`s birth
without lying about it. Even the lie that he doesn`t talk about it anymore.

Here is why interviewers should never stop asking Donald Trump about the
President`s birth certificate. It is the single best possible preview of
how Donald Trump would evaluate information, especially intelligence
information in the oval office. The President has to do that every day.

Voters should worry about a President unable to distinguish fact from
fantasy. Voters should worry about just how easily a president could be
misled by bad information. As George W. Bush was when the CIA director told
him that it was a slam dunk, that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
This is serious business.

George W. Bush went to war in Iraq because he was unable to distinguish
good information from bad information. In his first round of lying about
President Obama`s birth certificate four years ago Donald Trump lied about
having top secret intelligence about the President`s birth.


TRUMP: You are not allowed to be a President if you`re not born in this
country. He may not have been born in this country. And I`ll tell you what,
three weeks ago, I thought he was born in this country. Right now I have
some real doubts. I have people that actually have been studying it and
they cannot believe what they`re finding.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You have people now down searching in Hawaii?

TRUMP: Absolutely. And they cannot believe what they`re finding.


O`DONNELL: That`s what Donald Trump looks like when he`s lying. In other
words, that`s the way he looks every day.

I said at the time that Donald Trump was lying in every word that he was
saying about the President`s birth four years ago, including lying about
sending people to Hawaii to investigate it. He never sent anyone to Hawaii.
He just lied about that. In the same way that Dick Cheney pushed the lie
within the Bush administration about Saddam Hussein trying to obtain
uranium for nuclear weapons from Africa.

President Bush was never presented with absolute proof that Saddam Hussein
had weapons of mass destruction and he was never presented with absolute
proof that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction. We do
not know whether President Bush would have recognized absolute proof if he
had seen it.

We do know that Donald Trump is incapable of recognizing absolute proof
when he sees it. Here is the proof that President Obama was born in Hawaii.


O`DONNELL: There isn`t a court in America that would not accept that birth
certificate as proof. Here`s what Donald Trump says about that proof.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A few years ago, you led the birther movement. You
sent investigators out to Hawaii to find out whether or not Obama, which
you say was not born here.

And it turned out to not be true so why should they believe you here?

TRUMP: Well, I don`t know, according to you it`s not true. I don`t know,
you know .

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He released his birth certificate.

TRUMP: You know, if you believe that, that`s fine. It`s an old subject. I`m
about jobs, I`m about security, I`m about fixing the military, I`m about
taking care of our vets. I`m about things that you don`t have to bring up
old subjects. Whether he did or not, who knows. A lot of people don`t agree
with you on that, by the way.


O`DONNELL: Four years later, Donald Trump still doesn`t believe President
Obama`s birth certificate is President Obama`s birth certificate. You could
not ask for a better illustration of how a President Trump would evaluate
the information. And that is the single most important presidential skill.
Being able to separate truths from untruths.

The interviewers who get a chance to question Donald Trump and don`t ask
him about the President`s birth certificate are in effect adopting the
position that if a presidential candidate continue continues to lie about
something long enough, then those interviewers will eventually just give up
and allow the lie to live.

Those interviewers are also missing the perfect opportunity to examine the
fact-finding skills that Donald Trump would use in the oval office. What
could be more important than that?


has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of
uranium from Africa.



O`DONNELL: Late night comedy shows have become mandatory stops for
presidential candidates it seems there`s a presidential candidate on one of
the shows every night.

Here are some of the highlights so far this campaign season.


COLBERT: I want to thank you not only for being here, I want to thank you
for running for President.

TRUMP: I`m liking him a lot.

COLBERT: I`m liking you too.

What do you make of what`s the name Donald Trump? I`ve heard of him.

election. You never know what might happen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s going to be really classy. It`s going to be
fantastic. It`s going to be huge.

COLBERT: Say something nice about Carly Fiorina?

TRUMP: I think she`s a very nice woman. Really a nice woman. Am I doing a
good job?

COLBERT: I want to ask you to do something silly because that`s what our
show is all about.

please don`t take a walk with me, I`d rather stay right here at home in
bed, I want to lie back down in my nice warm bed. My name`s Snick and
you`re going to have to carry me.

COLBERT: I want to give your office the respect it deserves. How much is

I think you`re very, very, very tough. I know you`re a tough mother and I
know you are a grandmother as well but you`re a tough mother.

CLINTON: A tough mother?

COLBERT: No, no, no.

Do you think America is ready for the first socialist President?


COLBERT: Your campaign poster is just Jeb! With a JEB! Why the Jeb! Why?

JEB BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Because I`ve been using Jeb since
1994. It connotes excitement. It connotes [laughing]


I want to talk about the elephant in the room which in this case is a
donkey. Do you have anything you`d like to tell us right now about your

you should run for President again and I`ll be your vice president.


O`DONNELL: Up next more on the late night comedians and the campaign. And
later, the comedian of Boston Harbor.


O`DONNELL: The Boston guy who went viral today screaming about a wicked big
fish. You`ve got to see this. There will be bleeping. But I think you`ll
understand every word he says.




COLBERT: For years I played an over the top like conservative you know
character. Not as long as you did, but for many years.


O`DONNELL: Joining us now Dave Itzkoff, culture reporter for the New York
Times. It`s that season again, Dave, and these shows become remarkably
important. At least the candidates seem to think so. They all line up to do

think because there are just more candidates than ever. It also sort of
feels like more late night shows an ever. All these shows needs ways to
stand out. They`ve all attached themselves to certain candidates.

Colbert, premiering as the host of Late Show, sort of just as the
presidential election is ramping up. I mean it`s a great opportunity for
Colbert, but it also has I think increased the competiveness of the


ITZKOFF: And so people really want I think to tie kind of down these
candidates as soon as possible, take ownership of them, give them an
association with one of their shows as quickly as they can.

O`DONNELL: And Stephen Colbert has brought seriousness to some of these
interviewees that we haven`t seen before. He always makes sure they`re
funny, but let`s take a look at this moment with Vice President Joe Biden,
for example.

COLBERT: You said this weekend that you don`t know if you are emotionally
prepared to run for President.

BIDEN: Look, I don`t think any man or woman should run for President
unless, number one, they know exactly why they would want to be President
and two, they can look at the folks out there and say I promise you, you
have my whole heart, my whole soul, my energy and my passion to do this.
And I`d be lying if I said that I knew I was there.


O`DONNELL: It`s hard to imagine that interview going that way and all the
ways that it went before Stephen Colbert was doing The Late Night shows.

ITZKOFF: Absolutely. I mean not only in the clip that you showed us but
throughout it was a very touching conversation, a very sincere conversation
between these two men.


ITZKOFF: Because of elements that they share in their lives, not only their
Catholicism but also lives that have been touched by personal tragedies,
they relate in that way.

And Colbert I think in particular is an interviewer just giving the Vice
President the space to speak about these things and not interrupt him, not
cracking jokes the whole time. You can`t really think of too many
television personalities in general that would give him the room to do
that, to have that conversation.


O`DONNELL: The oldest political player of them all in this field late night
show is “Saturday Night Live” which has not yet weighed in on this
campaign. Let`s take a look back to one of the most important “Saturday
Night Live” takes on a presidential campaign.


SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, HOST: We are almost out of time. So I will instead
ask each candidate to sum up in a single word the best argument for his
candidacy. Governor Bush?

BUSH: Strategary.

HOST: Vice president, Gore?



O`DONNELL: SNL was able to reduce each one of those candidates to one word.
And we`re going to see what they do with this field of candidates pretty

ITZKOFF: Yes, I mean it does seem like they`ve already got their sights on
Hillary Clinton. They`ve got Kate McKinnon coming back to play her. And I
think Donald Trump is clearly going to be a prime target of theirs.


ITZKOFF: That I think this year they`re going to have Taron Killam start to
play him.


ITZKOFF: And so there`s certainly an expectation that those are the two
main targets.


ITZKOFF: So beware if you`re Hilary Clinton or Donald Trump.

O”DONNELL: Can`t wait, Dave Itzkoff, thanks for joining us.

ITZKOFF: My pleasure, thank you.

O`DONNELL: Up next, a video that`s been viewed over a million times now on


O`DONNELL: We`re going to play it here and you`re going to meet the man
behind the camera. The guy you never see in this video, but you hear. You
really hear him.



O`DONNELL: Jaws was a big scary fish story about a giant shark off the
coast of Massachusetts. Another big scary fish story in the Boston area has
gone viral today, thanks to a video that “The Daily Beast” describes this
way –


O`DONNELL: Fish gets most Boston reaction ever.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh look a baby whale.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s a baby [ bleep ] whale, man. Holy [ bleep ], we are
witnessing a baby [ bleep ] whale right here, dude. Holy [ bleep ]. We`re
seeing some [ bleep ] we ain`t never seen before, kid. Oh, my god, that
thing looks dead, man. We got to call the aquarium or something, dude. Jay
stop, here it is, right here, Jay. Oh, man, look at this [ bleep ] thing.
Holy [ bleep ]. What is that have [ bleep ] thing?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s a big flounder, man,

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If that`s a flounder man, let`s put it in, Jay. Come
on. Jay, Jay, we could get some big money for that if it`s a [ bleep ]
fish, buddy. Come on. Let`s [ bleep ] hook that [ bleep ] and we`ll be on
the [ bleep ] news, man. It needs help, whatever it is, dude. It`s dying.
Jay, let`s get it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, he`s dying buddy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let`s get it. Let`s get it. Oh, man, Jay, that is a [
bleep ] – that`s a tuna, bro.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jay that`s a tuna or something, Jay. Look at it. Come

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It looks like a flounder with the fins.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, man, Jay, let`s put it in. Dude. Look at that [
bleep ] thing. Oh, my god. Jay`s got a little [ bleep ] fishing hook. Are
you telling me that`s the hook you come? Oh, my god! Oh, we got it! Oh [
bleep ], Jay. Oh, my [ bleep ] god. Jay, that is still good meat on that
fish, kid. Am I lying? Holy [ bleep ]! Look at you mother [ bleep ]! Oh, my
god, Jay. Look at him, he`s trying to get away.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What kind of fish is it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who the [ bleep ] knows. It`s Moby Dick!


O`DONNELL: Was it Moby Dick? Was it a flounder? Was it a Tuna? The man
behind the video will tell us.


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