Scaramucci supports GOP challenge. TRANSCRIPT: 8/12/19, The Last Word w/ Lawrence O’Donnell.

Guests:
Lisa Bloom, Maria Hinojosa, Bill Weld
Transcript:

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST:  Good evening, Rachel. 

 

And Stacey Abrams was on everyone`s list to join a field of presidential

candidates, especially if it was going to be as big as it has become.  But

apparently, she has decided to sit this out. 

 

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST:  She`s decided to sit this out but I think she

has other ideas.  I mean, I think that part of – I think she`s, A,

ambitious, B, strategic, and C, knows that whoever is the nominee is going

to have to consider her as a running mate, and may be considered as a

running mate from not being in the pool of presidential contenders is a

good move at this point. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Yes, and a southern running mate for the Democrats, that`s

something we haven`t had for quite a while. 

 

MADDOW:  Let alone someone who`s incredibly talented and charismatic. 

 

O`DONNELL:  And did we mention African-American woman which is something

they`ve never had ever.  So, there`s that.

 

Thank you, Rachel.

 

MADDOW:  Thank you, Lawrence.

 

O`DONNELL:  Well, this is one of those very, very – I mean, wicked strange

nights when I find myself agreeing with Donald Trump.  Yes, I said that. 

And I mean agreeing with him word for word, in one of his tweets today. 

 

And I also agree with the person who currently claims to be the White House

press secretary even though we have never heard her voice publicly, I agree

with her for the first and only time about the very same thing that I agree

with Donald Trump on.  And that is a very small piece of the ground we will

have to cover in the next hour and one of the least important pieces of

ground we will cover in the next hour.  And so, we will save that for later

in the hour. 

 

And I think many of you are going to find yourselves in agreement with this

one, in agreement with Donald Trump for this one time. 

 

But we begin tonight with the death in prison of a former friend of Donald

Trump`s, a man who Donald Trump called a terrific guy, who with Donald

Trump`s full approval liked girls who in Donald Trump`s words were, quote,

on the younger side.  It took the death of an accused child rapist and sex

trafficker and friend of Presidents Trump and Clinton to unite the

Democrats and Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee in the search

for information from Donald Trump and William Barr`s Justice Department. 

 

Chairman Jerry Nadler and the ranking Republican member of the House

Judiciary Committee, Doug Collins, co-signed a letter tonight to the

Justice Department with 23 questions about the death of Jeffrey Epstein,

quote, from an apparent suicide on the morning of August 10th, 2019, while

in your custody at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in New York.

 

The letter is addressed to Hugh Hurwitz, the acting director of the Bureau

of Prisons, which is an agency in the Justice Department under Attorney

General William Barr`s control.  Hugh Hurwitz is a lifetime government

bureaucrat whose career began in Republican administrations but has also

included Democratic administrations.  He started as a low-level assistant

in the Bureau of Prisons the year after he graduated from college. 

 

He eventually became a lawyer, spent some time in private law practice,

returned to the Bureau of Prisons in 1997 in a technical capacity as an

assistant chief for construction.  During the Bush administration, he

worked in a technical job in the Food and Drug Administration, later became

the FDA`s I.T. guy.  Moved on to another technical job having nothing to do

with policy and the Department of Education, during the Obama

administration, he joined NASA and the inspector general`s office, and

returned to the bureau of prisons in 2015 as an assistant director. 

 

May 18th of 2018, Attorney General Jeff Sessions appointed Hugh Hurwitz,

the acting director of the Bureau of Prisons, and because this is the Trump

administration, he is still the acting director, over a year later.  When

you see Hugh Hurwitz testify to the House Judiciary Committee both under

oath and under pressure as he most surely will, you will be seeing the

classic government technocrat.  You will not be seeing someone who has ever

run a prison or a jail himself. 

 

He has never had one day of experience working in a prison or a jail.  It

is possible he has never met an inmate.  But it was his job to keep Jeffrey

Epstein alive.  It was also William Barr`s job to keep Jeffrey Epstein

alive. 

 

And Attorney General Barr said today in effect, don`t blame me.  Attorney

General Barr claimed to be, quote, appalled and angry – those were his

words – about the death of Jeffrey Epstein.  And he made it very clear

that Hugh Hurwitz is in line to take the fall for this one. 

 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

 

WILLIAM BARR, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL:  We are now learning of serious

irregularities at this facility that are deeply concerning and demand a

thorough investigation. 

 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

 

O`DONNELL:  So, William Barr is clearly going point downward and blame Hugh

Hurwitz or someone lower down the chain of command at the federal

correction center in New York where Jeffrey Epstein died.  Maybe the Barr

investigation will ultimately point the finger at the unionized guards who

failed to keep Jeffrey Epstein alive.  Or the chief psychologist of the

correctional center who was supposed to be in charge of the suicide watch

of Jeffrey Epstein and the aftermath of the suicide watch of Jeffrey

Epstein. 

 

After Jeffrey Epstein reportedly tried to kill himself last month, he was

placed on suicide watch for some period of time and then reportedly taken

off suicide watch.  The federal Bureau of Prisons rules for suicide watches

were written in 2007 when Hugh Hurwitz was working at the Department of

Education.  It`s entirely possible Hugh Hurwitz had no idea what those

rules were until he got the Judiciary Committee`s letter tonight. 

 

One of the rules says once an inmate has been placed on watch, the watch

may not be terminated under any circumstance without the program

coordinator or designee performing a face-to-face evaluation.  Only the

program coordinator will have the authority to remove an inmate from

suicide watch.  The program coordinator is usually the prison`s chief

psychologist.

 

Question 12 of the Judiciary Committee`s letter to the Bureau of Prisons

is: Does MCC New York have such a program coordinator?  Did he or she

authorize the removal of Mr. Epstein from suicide watch?  If not who did?

 

Question 13: Did the program coordinator consult with anyone else in making

this determination?  If so, who? 

 

Question 14: Was the termination of Mr. Epstein`s suicide watch by the

official who made such determination discussed with or directed by any

supervisory personnel or leadership of the Bureau of Prisons or any

Department of Justice personnel or executive branch personnel outside of

the Bureau of Prisons?

 

Question 15: Who at the Bureau of Prisons, Department of Justice and

elsewhere in the executive branch was notified of the termination of Mr.

Epstein`s suicide watch and when?

 

The Trump White House is the craziest White House in history.  It is the

most reckless group of people who have ever worked in a White House.  And

the president himself is the most reckless of them all. 

 

The Judiciary Committee`s letter signed by the top Democrat and the top

Republican on the committee, is asking if anyone in the Trump White House

was involved or aware of the removal of the suicide watch of Jeffrey

Epstein.  That`s what`s in question number 14.  Was the termination of Mr.

Epstein`s suicide watch discussed with or directed by any supervisory

personnel or leadership of the Bureau of Prisons or any Department of

Justice personnel or executive branch personnel? 

 

Was William Barr involved?  Was Donald Trump involved?  That`s what is in

question number 14.  And the House Judiciary Committee is going to get

answers to these questions, to all of these questions, including please

provide information pertaining to the individual correction officers who

were responsible for monitoring Mr. Epstein on August 9th and August 10th

specifically with respect to how long they had been on their shifts at the

time Mr. Epstein had been found non-responsive in his cell. 

 

Question 17: If Mr. Epstein was removed from suicide watch, what

precautions were put in place to help prevent the possibility of self-

injury from Mr. Epstein, given that he was transitioning from suicide

watch?  Were there any steps taken to remove possible implements of self-

injury?

 

Question 20: Were any video surveillance cameras placed in or near Mr.

Epstein`s cell?  Do recordings show the circumstances that led to Mr.

Epstein`s death or the presence of any other person during this time

period?

 

The bipartisan letter sent by the House Judiciary Committee to the acting

director of the bureau of prisons says: The apparent suicide of this high-

profile and if allegations are proven to be accurate particularly

reprehensible individual while in the federal government`s custody

demonstrates severe miscarriages of and deficiencies in inmate protocol and

has allowed the deceased to ultimately evade facing justice.  Any victims

of Mr. Epstein`s actions will forever be denied proper recourse.  The

competency and rigor of our criminal justice system has been marred by this

apparent oversight.

 

Leading off our discussion tonight. Mimi Rocah, former assistant U.S.

attorney in the Southern District of New York.  She`s an MSNBC legal

contributor.  And John Heilemann, national affairs analyst for NBC News and

MSNBC.  He is co-host and executive producer of Showtime`s “The Circus.”

 

And, Mimi, you know these facilities down there in Lower Manhattan.  Former

U.S. attorney tweeted over the weekend that surely there is video that will

tell us something if not everything about this. 

 

MIMI ROCAH, MSNBC LEGAL CONTRIBUTOR:  Well, there will be video that will

be part of the puzzle that they`re going to have to piece together.  There

won`t be video in the sell because of privacy rights.  But there will be

video in the hallways.  There will be – there will be – I`m sure they`re

already looking – somebody is going through whatever video can be gone

through. 

 

They are looking at who did Epstein speak to.  Who did he have phone calls

with?  Who did he have contact with in the time between when he was taken

off suicide watch and killed himself presumably? 

 

You know, every personnel, everyone who works there is going to be

interviewed and questioned separately and carefully.  But the real problem

here in my mind is we need answers and we need both the public and the

victims to trust the answers that we get.  And with Bill Barr at the helm

and doing what he`s already doing, which is spinning this, like he did with

the Mueller report, how can anybody trust it? 

 

He had been recused.  He unrecused himself to take responsibility over the

southern district investigation.  And now, he`s already disclaiming

responsibility as you said. 

 

And I think for anyone to have faith in what the findings are, which are so

important to the victims and the justice system as a whole, Bill Barr must

recuse himself. 

 

O`DONNELL:  John, there is an established Republican congressional view of

responsibility for department heads in situations like this, especially if

it`s the head of the State Department and the death occurs in Benghazi. 

All of that was blamed on Hillary Clinton by House Republicans. 

 

Here`s William Barr at the top of his department.  But this letter tonight

co-signed by the leading Republican on the House Judiciary Committee is

asking all the right questions. 

 

JOHN HEILEMANN, MSNBC NATIONAL AFFAIRS ANALYST:  Yes.  Does the word

hypocrisy mean anything to you, Lawrence?  That`s not a new thing for this

Republican Party in this age of Donald Trump to cast aside all prior

alleged convictions or commitments to how responsibility works, where the

buck stops in situations like this. 

 

I think it`s, you know – you`ve seen the cognitive dissonance as you

watched before the Epstein event, you know, on Friday, you had the names of

some prominent people who were implicated in the Epstein thing.  You saw

Bill Richardson`s name.  You saw George Mitchell`s name come out.  And you

saw Donald Trump`s name.  And you saw Bill Clinton`s name. 

 

And yet overt weekend, you have the Trump administration, people around

Donald Trump basically pointing to Bill Clinton, pointing to Bill Clinton

as the president stoked this conspiracy theory by retweeting someone who

claimed that this is part of the Clinton body count.  Yet it is the case

that both of them are – were known historical consorts of Jeffrey Epstein,

and only one of them is the current president of the United States whose

Justice Department runs the federal prison system. 

 

So, I`m not engaging in any conspiracy theories.  Just to say, if you`re

going to start asking about culpability and you`re going to start point

fingers, the place to start looking is with the government that runs that

facility.  And that goes all the way up to this attorney general, this

attorney general who has shown over and over again that he`s in this game

first and foremost to protect Donald Trump above all. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Mimi, to go back to your point about the Barr non-recusal,

because the investigations in the southern district do cross lines with

Donald Trump here and there and here is someone who is a former friend of

Donald Trump Trump`s.  Ironically, oddly, given his job, his first job in

New York at a private high school in New York by William Barr`s father,

William Barr`s father as the headmaster of school actually hired this guy,

that`s plenty of grounds right there for Barr to recuse himself. 

 

But he didn`t, as you pointed out in this case, which means he left himself

in charge fully of the incarceration of Jeffrey Epstein.  What efforts did

he make personally make with that facility to explaining to them the

importance of this prisoner? 

 

ROCAH:  Exactly.  I mean, he`s now saying in his statement today, when he

was speaking, he said, you know, this is such an important case.  If it

were that important of a case, a case you said, you know what, I`m so

invested in this case and I`m going to put aside those maybe apparent

conflicts that people might have issue with because I want to oversee this,

I want to make sure it`s done right this time around – well, then you

should have said from the top down whatever resources you need to protect

this man, the same way they did with El Chapo, right?  It`s not like they

aren`t capable of doing it. 

 

Whatever resources you need I will get you.  I`m not saying there aren`t

systematic problems on a day-to-day basis in the MCC, MDC, other prison

that maybe will come to light as a result of this and be addressed, but he

could have reached out, he should have reached out, especially given his

position, and said, I am giving you the resources you need to make sure

Jeffrey Epstein goes to trial and sees that day of trial. 

 

O`DONNELL:  And so, John, as Mimi said in her first statement tonight,

William Barr is already spinning this.  He goes out there today and goes

way beyond anything we know in the news reports and says serious

irregularities in this facility which he supervises, which is under his

jurisdiction.  And that again is William Barr stepping out ahead of what we

know before we`re allowed to know.  And then not giving us any hint of what

an irregularity is. 

 

HEILEMANN:  Well, we`ve seen Bill Barr do this before, step out ahead of

everything we know and cast events in a certain way.  Spin them in a

certain way.  It`s part of the troubling pattern I think on the part of the

attorney general. 

 

And I will say, you know, we don`t know when he says there are troubling

irregularities, we do not know if he`s talking historically.  We don`t know

if he really just reporting specifically to this case.  There clearly are

irregularities with respect to this case.  The question is if he`s casting

an aspersion that he`s trying to now claim that these problems are systemic

and have gone on for years and years.  And so, although, you know, it

happened on my watch, I can`t be responsible for problems that have been

festering in this prison for many, many decades. 

 

We`ll see if that`s where he go but don`t be surprised if that is where we

go. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Mimi, “New York Times” reporting that this means that

prosecutors will probably start concentrating more heavily on the financial

life of Jeffrey Epstein since they can`t prosecute any of these criminal

cases against him. 

 

We have another report in “The New York Times” tonight from James Stewart. 

He reports of an interview he had with Epstein last year where Epstein

points to a picture saying that`s MBS, referring to Mohammad bin Salman,

the crown prince of Saudi Arabia.  The crown prince had visited him many

times and they spoke often, Mr. Epstein said. 

 

Mimi, if that`s true, that`s just one indicator of the kinds of people who

may be exposed in the continuing of this investigation. 

 

ROCAH:  Yes.  Look, the fact that Geoffrey Berman, U.S. attorney in the

Southern District of New York, put out a statement on Saturday – I mean,

that`s unusual for them to put out a statement at all about a case so

quickly over a weekend, and the fact that he made that point about there

being a conspiracy and we`re going to continue investigating and we want

victims to come forward, I don`t think he would have done that if there

were just sort of, hey, let`s throw it up and see what happens.  That would

be pretty risky on his part. 

 

So, they clearly have already I think some idea where this is going in

terms of co-conspirators.  Whether that turns out to be, you know,

Ghislaine – I can`t pronounce her name – Maxwell and/or other more high-

profile people, I don`t know.  But they are going to keep pursuing this,

both I think criminally and civilly, in terms of forfeiture of his assets. 

 

O`DONNELL:  The U.S. attorney said to Mimi`s point on Saturday: To those

brave young women who have already come forward and to the many others who

have yet to do so, let me reiterate that we remain committed to standing

for you in our investigation of the conduct charged in the indictment,

which included a conspiracy count, remains ongoing.

 

So, John, that`s the essence of what we know continues. 

 

HEILEMANN:  Conspiracies are rarely conducted alone.  Conspiracies usually

involve co-conspirators, and we have some idea about some of the people who

were close to Jeffrey Epstein.  Ms. Maxwell is one of those people who`s

pointed to frequently. 

 

It is the case, I believe, not being a lawyer but having listened to a lot

of smart lawyers over the weekend that the one positive element of this

entire thing and there are really – I mean, it`s obviously, a really dark

turn of events, but the notion that there will no longer be standing or the

ability to challenge the searches of all of Geoffrey Epstein`s properties,

of all of his bank records, that he won`t have lawyers who have standing to

fight.  So, if there are going to be cases brought against co-conspirators,

it – should they exist, it should now be for a committed prosecutor, a set

of prosecutors, easier to get evidence of that conspiracy than it would

have been previously with Jeffrey Epstein`s lawyers fighting at every turn. 

And that will be one of the tests of whether or not this investigation is

serious or not. 

 

Are we now going to see prosecutors or investigators just ransacking every

element of Jeffrey Epstein`s life in order to try to find whatever evidence

exists of anyone who is complicit, whether they`re a co-conspirator or just

complicit in this behavior because that is what the victims are owed. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Mimi, are we going to know how Jeffrey Epstein died and why he

died and who`s responsible? 

 

ROCAH:  Well, look, the inspector general`s report I think they generally

make their findings public, and they are, you know, reasonably independent

from Bill Barr, although part of the Department of Justice.  I think we

have a good chance of knowing that. 

 

The FBI investigation – and by the way, I`m not casting aspersions on the

FBI agents themselves.  This is about Barr overseeing it.  That if it`s a

criminal investigation we would only know about if they brought criminal

charges against someone, and I think it`s just too early to say that.  I

think also through House oversight, you know, we will get some answers. 

 

So, yes, I think we will get the answers.  I think it`s probably going to

take longer than people want, which is why Bill Barr should not be doing

what he`s doing already, which is putting out a few little select cryptic

facts with his spin on it. 

 

O`DONNELL:  And pointing downward with the blame. 

 

Mimi Rocah and John Heilemann, thank you both for starting us off tonight. 

 

When we come back, Lisa Bloom will join us.  She represents some of the

women who have been – who have lawsuits pending against Jeffrey Epstein

for his conduct with them.  She will join us next. 

 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

 

O`DONNELL:  The criminal case against Epstein died when he did.  Those are

the words of NYU law professor Stephen Gillers.  The criminal case of the

United States of America versus Jeffrey Epstein is over, but civil lawsuits

brought against Jeffrey Epstein can continue against Jeffrey Epstein`s

estate. 

 

For more on the civil cases, we turn to our next guest, attorney Lisa

Bloom, who has been handling some of the civil lawsuits against Jeffrey

Epstein. 

 

Lisa, thank you very much for joining us tonight.  What happens to your

cases now? 

 

LISA BLOOM, THE BLOOM FIRM MANAGING ATTORNEY:  Well, we are filing this

week on behalf of two Jeffrey Epstein victims.  I`ve heard from about five

more over the weekend.  Our clients for the last few weeks before his

death, we decided it was more important to cooperate with the criminal

investigation.  And so, that`s what we were doing.  We thought that should

have priority. 

 

Now, that he`s passed away, there`s no reason why we shouldn`t go forward

with the civil case.  I want everybody to know that civil cases can go

forward even after the defendant dies.  You simply proceed against the

estate of the person who died. 

 

And there`s a wonderful coincidence which is that in the state of New York,

this week, a window is opening up of an extended statute of limitations,

which means more time to sue if you were a victim of child sexual abuse,

you can now sue up to age 55 for child sexual abuse that happened at any

time.  That window is going to open on Wednesday and it`s going to be open

for one year.  So, anybody who has claims against Epstein for child sexual

abuse should certainly speak to a lawyer as soon as possible. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Now, in lawsuits like this, the normal discovery procedure at

some point would include a subpoena to depose the defendant.  You would

have had Jeffrey Epstein under oath in a deposition at some point.  That`s

testimony that in a criminal case, they cannot compel.  But now, you`ve

lost that opportunity also. 

 

What other discovery methods do you have? 

 

BLOOM:  That`s OK.  I don`t mind losing that opportunity.  That`s one less

witness to contradict what my clients will say.  I don`t know if there will

be anybody on the defense side to contradict what my clients will say. 

 

But you`re right, Lawrence, that in filing a civil suit one of the big

advantages besides getting compensation for my clients, which I think is

very important, is the subpoena power.  That I will have the power to

require people, not just the estate but third parties to answer my

questions under oath in depositions, give me documents and information, and

that`s something that`s very important to my clients as well, is getting

answers as to how this happened.  And if others were responsible, if others

were enablers, they could certainly be brought into the civil case as well. 

 

O`DONNELL:  What do you anticipate in terms of cooperation for your cases

from the federal prosecutors in New York?  Also from the criminal

investigators in Florida? 

 

BLOOM:  Well, I`d expect cooperation.  I mean, why not?  We`ve seen been

cooperating with them.  Now that Mr. Epstein is deceased, I don`t see any

reason why we shouldn`t cooperate. 

 

I also think it`s possible, call me maybe overly optimistic, it`s possible

that Mr. Epstein`s estate might decide to do the right thing by the victims

and waive legal technicalities like statutes of limitations for victims who

are over the age of 18 and actually just do the right thing, set up a fund

for victims, do what he was never able to do in life and that is show some

respect for the victims, compensate them for their injuries, let them come

forward with credible claims, show how they`ve been damaged, show how their

careers have been derailed, their relationships ruined, their mental health

destroyed, and compensate them, do the right thing, don`t fight them. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Are there precedents in cases like this of the federal

government basically handing over their investigative product to civil

attorneys after the defendant in a federal criminal case has died? 

 

BLOOM:  That`s a great question, and I don`t know the answer to that

question.  I think we have made Freedom of Information requests in other

cases to law enforcement.  I have many cases where we accuse high-profile

individuals like Bill Cosby, for example, Bill O`Reilly, many others, and

when they`re accused and sometimes there`s law enforcement implications as

well, we can get the files sometimes redacted.  Again, in this case, I

don`t see any reason now that he`s gone why we shouldn`t get anything.  Why

redact?  There`s really no more privacy interests involved. 

 

O`DONNELL:  Lisa Bloom, thank you very much for joining us tonight.  Really

appreciate it. 

 

BLOOM:  Thank you. 

 

O`DONNELL:  When we come back, an analysis by the “New York Times” shows

that the El Paso mass murderer wasn`t just echoing Donald Trump`s words. 

He was echoing the words of the Trump-supporting media, especially that

word “invasion.”  A “New York Times” analysis shows how the Trump-

supporting media has been pumping out that language to the El Paso mass

murderer and others. 

 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

 

O`DONNELL: You can shoot invaders. Those are the exact words that Ann

Coulter said to a Fox News host last year. Today those words appeared on

the front page of “The New York Times” in an extensive analysis by the

“Times” of the similarity of language used on Fox News with the language

used by the El Paso mass murderer in his writings.

 

What he called an invasion at our southern border. A “New York Times”

analysis of Fox News and other Trump-supporting media outlets found

hundreds of examples of language, ideas, and ideologies that overlapped

with the mass killer`s written statement of a shared vocabulary of

intolerance that stokes fears centered on immigrants of color.

 

The “Times” found more than 300 Fox News references to an immigrant

invasion since last year alone. Here is video compiled by “The New York

Times.”

 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re being invaded.

 

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: The invasion of illegal immigrants.

 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The fact of the matter is that this is an attempted

invasion of our country.

 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have all these minors from Central America flooding

the border.

 

HANNITY: Multi-culturism isn`t real. This is really destroying one culture

and replacing it with a new foreign culture.

 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is not migrants coming into the country. This is

nothing short of an invasion.

 

LAURA INGRAHAM, FOX NEWS HOST: Democrats who want to replace you the

American voters with newly amnesty citizens.

 

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a government sanctioned invasion of our country.

 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

 

O`DONNELL: As “The New York Times” reports the portrayal of immigration as

a menace has returned with force, a shift brought on not just by Radio and

TV hosts but by Republican leaders in Congress and the President himself.

After this break, Maria Hinojosa will join our discussion.

 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

 

O`DONNELL: Donald Trump does not know what an invasion is. He`s never seen

one. He`s not related to anyone who fought on the American side in World

War II. He doesn`t know what happened on D-day. He doesn`t know what the

word “invasion” means and that has something to do with the way he uses the

word.

 

Here`s something he said in one of his rallies in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

He said, “It`s an invasion. You know that? I say invasion and they say

isn`t that terrible?” Yes, we do. And then he said, “I don`t know what

these people are thinking.”

 

Joining us now, Maria Hinojosa, Anchor and Executive Producer of the Public

Radio Show “Latino USA.” Maria, what are you thinking when you hear Donald

Trump say invasion, when you see this article on the front page of “The New

York Times” with the way Fox News has pumped this word “invasion” into this

mass murderer in El Paso, who is 21 years old, let`s remember?

 

So he`s heard Donald Trump talk invasion since he was in high school. He`s

heard this language since he was in junior high school developing out

there. And here`s Donald Trump saying what`s wrong with saying invasion?

 

MARIA HINOJOSA, ANCHOR AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCER LATINO USA: You know, just

when you said it, Lawrence, I was like - especially because you said he

said it in Michigan. I grew up in Chicago. Like my family is who he`s

talking about.

 

So one of the things that I do as a journalist is of course I`m always

talking to people. So I`ll say look, when Donald Trump is talking about

Mexicans and invasion he`s talking about me. And they`ll be like no, not

you. And I`ll be like, well, my entire family wasn`t born in this country.

We`re immigrants.

 

So - and my father was a professional. He`s a medical doctor. So somebody

could say he was taking somebody`s job away. But this is who we are. Look

at me. And I say look at me because this is who we are.

 

And in a way what we`ve had to do in the horror of El Paso is like we`re

having to like be on this little what is it? The mouse thing that`s going -

we`re trying to prove our humanity constantly whereas this President,

everything about him is really focused on a tackiness.

 

It feels in-congress because it`s like guys; I`m an American just like you

I`m an American citizen. What is this thing about an invasion? And I want

to tell you something, Lawrence because you and I spoke last week when I

was in El Paso.

 

We crossed the border into Mexico. There were people waiting in line. This

is a new phenomenon since Donald Trump. They were waiting in line to cross

into the United States. They`re in Mexico. I saw about 50 people. I saw

lots of children lots of toddlers. I saw babies, infants.

 

And I walked up to these people very calmly because I didn`t want to alarm

them. But I said have you heard anything about what`s happening in the

United States regarding people like you who are seeking refugee status and

who have children?

 

And they were like, no. No. Have you heard any stories about children or

babies being taken away? No. That couldn`t - you know, that`s impossible in

the United States. These are not people that are coming to invade. These

are not people that have an agenda that`s kind of like now let`s go into

the United States and - these are people who are suffering.

 

But the problem with the Trump administration is probably no one has

actually gone and looked in these people`s eyes and had a conversation with

them.

 

O`DONNELL: So they don`t have information about what`s happening on this

side of the border and what`s happening to parents and children on this

side of the border?

 

HINOJOSA: I mean, it wasn`t shocking because I don`t buy into this notion

that this White House puts out which is that the caravans and the people

that this is all one massive, you know, big ploy to take over - look, I

have been talking to immigrants for the entirety of my life because I am

one.

 

This is the same thing I said to Samuel Huntington from Harvard University,

who wrote a seminal book saying basically like those are them and they`re

not us. And I said, in all of my time talking to immigrants not once,

Lawrence, not once has anyone of them said mm-hmm, I`m coming to take over,

I`m coming to invade.

 

So this is an illusion that has been created and propagated. But it`s not

based on reality. And I say this to the people who are watching. Talk to

your neighbors. Talk to the people who work with you. Ask them. If you say

it with love and without asking them to show their papers they`re going to

respond to you and be like invasion. What are you talking about?

 

O`DONNELL: I want your reaction to the Trump administration`s announcement

today that they`re going to tighten the rules around immigrants in this

country in any way relying on federal benefits - government benefits of any

kind. There are already rules about that but they want to narrow and

tighten the interpretation zone?

 

HINOJOSA: I just don`t - the messaging is very clear for immigrants. And

certainly when we talk immigrants, I mean, immigrants could be you, could

be me. It`s anybody, right? It`s of all races. But in specific just kind of

after El Paso, after Mississippi, after the President saying let`s have

more raids, and then it`s like and guess what, even those of you who have

green cards, nothing for you. It`s distressing.

 

You know, when they don`t want to provide health care, for example, to

undocumented immigrants, I`m like, hmm, that is really smart. Not giving

health care to the people who are picking your fruit, making your food in

the restaurants, serving it to you, delivering it to you, but you don`t

want them to have health care.

 

So what they don`t understand is the way in which this backfires. But it`s

another way in which the message is clear, we don`t want you hear.

 

O`DONNELL: Maria Hinojosa, thank you very much for being here. It`s good

talking to you tonight. I really appreciate it.

 

HINOJOSA: Always a pleasure.

 

O`DONNELL: Thanks for joining us. And when we come back, a former Trump

supporter now thinks that the Republican Party should find a new

Presidential candidate for 2020. He doesn`t seem to know that there already

is one Former Republican Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld is running for

President. And he will join us.

 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

 

O`DONNELL: One of the most incompetent people who were hired to work in the

Trump White House has at least for now publicly turned against Donald Trump

as his latest ploy for tricking television bookers into putting him on TV.

 

And on this one I`ve got to admit Donald Trump is absolutely right when he

tweeted today “Scaramucci, who like so many others had nothing to do with

my election victory, is only upset that I didn`t want him back in the

administration where he desperately wanted to be. Also I seldom had time to

return his many calls to me. He just wanted to be on TV!”

 

And then came this in a Bloomberg report. “He worked at the White House for

less than two weeks and is certainly no expert on this President. White

House Spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said this is all so self-serving on his

part and the media plays right into it and this will surely be the only

time that I agree with the current White House Press Secretary.

 

Anthony Scaramucci is a lying fraud who supported a lying fraud for

President. He then won a power struggle with the other lying frauds working

in the White House at the time and got himself appointed White House

Communications Director, a job he was fired from before he could actually

start the job because of an interview that he gave to the New Yorker in

which he announced his plans for the White House Staff.

 

“I`m going to fire every one of them. The entire place will be fired over

the next two weeks.” he also said to the New Yorker when comparing himself

very favorably to Steve Bannon, “I`m not trying to blank my own blank.”

 

Now, remember, Anthony Scaramucci lies about everything. So it is entirely

possible that he was and continues to try to blank his own blank. Anthony

Scaramucci has never appeared on this program because he is one of the most

ridiculous characters in the Trump freak show and he is a proven liar and

proven liars aren`t welcome here, especially the clowniest of the clowns in

the Trump world.

 

Anthony Scaramucci`s break with the President, if it holds, which is

actually unlikely because this is Scaramucci we`re talking about, will mean

the loss of at most one Trump vote in the state of New York, which Donald

Trump is going to lose anyway.

 

The words “Anthony Scaramucci” have always meant absolutely nothing in

American politics and they always will. His new claim that he is looking

for a Republican to challenge Donald Trump for the Republican nomination

means that he remains so flawlessly ignorant about American politics that

he doesn`t even know that Donald Trump already has a serious Republican

primary challenger, the Former Republican Governor of Massachusetts,

William Weld, who will join our discussion here after this break.

 

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

 

O`DONNELL: Here is Iowa Republican voter Kate Miller who has had enough of

Donald Trump.

 

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

 

KATE MILLER, IOWA VOTER: I`m a lifelong conservative. I actually campaigned

door to door for Chuck Grassley his first year as a Senate candidate, but I

cannot vote for Donald Trump. He is not a conservative and I don`t think

he`s a good man, and when you watch cabinet member after cabinet member

fall away from him, I just can`t vote for him.

 

(END VIDEO CLIP)

 

O`DONNELL: Joining our discussion now, Bill Weld, Former Republican

Governor of Massachusetts, he is running for the Republican presidential

nomination against President Trump. Governor Weld, thank you very much for

joining us tonight. It sounds like Kate Miller is ready to hear from you

when you get to Iowa?

 

BILL WELD (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, I hope that`s so, Lawrence, and

I hope that maybe next time you`ll tell us what you really think about

Anthony Scaramucci.

 

(LAUGHTER)

 

WELD: But seriously, I think the mooch may have settled on a valuable

metaphor, durable metaphor in Chernobyl, because that suggests the idea of

a meltdown, or whatever you call it meltdown, or unhinged or un-tethered.

 

I do sense a rumbling there that the President has been obliged to spend so

much time dealing with things inside his own head, notably the emotions of

anger and fear that, you know, it may be at some point in the not-too-

distant future, he`s going to seemingly be overwhelmed by the demands of

his job.

 

And as you know, I think he`s going to lose by a lot next year, and I think

partly it`s because the U.S. house is going to recognize they don`t give

advisory opinions. They have to have real facts and so they need a real

investigation to get real facts, and that takes eight or ten good months,

not good months for Mr. Trump.

 

O`DONNELL: Governor, when you were Governor of Massachusetts early 1990s,

you supported an assault weapons ban there. In the aftermath now last week

of Dayton and of El Paso, do you think you can argue an assault weapons ban

to Republican primary voters?

 

WELD: I think when people say assault weapons a lot of them mean automatic

weapons, and those are, as you known, already illegal. You have to be a

federally licensed firearms dealer to own a fully automatic weapon.

 

I`m kind of nervous about all this talk about super universal background

checks on steroids. People are even talking about licensing all weapons out

there. There are 300 million rifles out there in private hands, and you

know me, Lawrence, I kind of tend toward the libertarian side.

 

I regard private gun ownership as kind of a bulwark against possible

government overreaching. If you look at history, Hitler makes it impossible

for the Jews to own guns or firearms, and when the knock comes at the door,

they can`t resist. They go to concentration camps.

 

Jose Dallon (ph) killed 20 million people. IDI Admin in Uganda after they

outlawed guns killed everyone who wasn`t part of his coalition. I do think

that red flags and hooks to signs of mental illness or previous violence

reported by a coworker or family member, that`s fine.

 

In this country you can get in front of a judge in six hours, and a judge

can decide whether the person is a danger to themselves or others, and I

think that would be a much more direct way to go at these mass shootings

than saying, we want to license 300 million rifles.

 

O`DONNELL: Well, the licensing argument is about sales that go on now. In

order to go to a weapons store and purchase something now, you would have

to be licensed to do that. In some of the proposals you would have to be

insured. Just like an automobile.

 

Just like if you get a new car tomorrow, what you have to do with a new

car. There are plenty of people that have old cars up in the backyard that

aren`t registered. No one is saying they have to register those?

 

WELD: Yes, that`s right. When I got my first shotgun, I sure this hell had

to have taken a hunter safety course, so I`m not saying you can`t put any

conditions on the acquisition of firearms. But I do want to point out that

throughout history, when the government has imposed stringent conditions

upon the mere ownership of firearms, having nothing to do with safety or

violence or threats. That has often ended in disaster. So gun ownership by

itself should not be the focus here.

 

O`DONNELL: But no one is talking about guns in general, they`re talking

about these particular kinds of weapons, these high-powered weapons that

can fire so many bullets with those magazines. They`re not talking about

revolvers? They`re not talking about handguns–

 

WELD: You said another magic word, which is magazine. One of these two

fellows who did the shooting over the weekend was walking around downtown

with a magazine holding 100 rounds. No, that`s not a God-given right.

 

But going after just pure rifle or shotgun by itself, even if it`s a five-

shot semiautomatic, those are - that`s the standard, AR-15 is a standard

U.S. military rifle. People do use five-shot rifles in hunting. That does

not shock my conscience as a weapon.

 

If you make it fully automatic by removing a pin, I used to prosecute

people for that. That`s a crime, because that transforms it into an

automatic weapon. But I don`t think that`s all well understood, but I do

think that the conversation is healthy because I think the red flag laws

where people can get an injunction from a judge or an order that someone

surrender their weapon if they have a sufficient history of violence or

violent tendencies.

 

Like one of these guys carried around a list in high school of people he

wanted to kill. There was one of the terrible cases two years ago where the

FBI had open investigations on the fellow who committed the crimes twice

and had to close them, because then there was a rule then that you had to

close a case in six months.  That`s not how the criminal justice system

works.  It takes longer than that often to build these cases.  But focusing

on people, you know, the potential people involved, I think, is the

shortest way to get there.

 

O`DONNELL:  Governor Weld, we haven`t just run out of time, we`ve gone into

overtime.  We have to get out of here.  Thank you very much for joining us

and please let Anthony Scaramucci know that you are running for President

as a Republican.

 

WELD:  I will call him tomorrow.  Thank you.

 

O`DONNELL:  All right.  That is tonight`s LAST WORD.  “THE 11TH HOUR” with

Brian Williams starts now.

 

 

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY

BE UPDATED.                                                                                                    

END

 

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