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All In with Chris Hayes, Transcript 01/22/15

Guests: Hillary Crosley-Cocker, Tara Dowdell

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight on ALL IN: A Mitt Romney-Jeb Bush summit is on and we have an idea how it might go. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) "GEORGE MADDOX": We`d love for you to be my vice president. "SELINA MEYER": You`d be my vice president. Huh? What did you say? HAYES (voice-over): Plus, antiabortion problems on the Hill. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to remove myself as a cosponsor of H.R. 36. HAYES (voice-over): Dissension in the GOP as Republican women rebel over an abortion bill. Then, new criticism of Bill Cosby. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t know why it`s so hard to believe women. HAYES (voice-over): The question, is it still OK to watch "The Cosby Show"? And Patriot Games in New England. BILL BELICHICK, PATRIOTS COACH: I have no knowledge -- TOM BRADY, PATRIOTS QUARTERBACK: I have no knowledge of anything. BELICHICK: I have no explanation. BRADY: I didn`t alter the ball in any way. HAYES (voice-over): In two of the most surreal press conferences in recent memory, Pats coach and quarterback deny all knowledge of any ball tampering in last Sunday`s game. ALL IN starts right now. BRADY: Things are going to be fine. This isn`t ISIS. HAYES: Good evening from New York, I`m Chris Hayes. A crucial moment today in the GOP`s invisible 2016 primary. Two main rivals for the mantle of establishment candidate Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney came face to face at a private meeting in Salt Lake City today, a meeting that was scheduled before Romney announced he may launch a third campaign for president. According to "The New York Times," the original idea was for Bush "to show his respect" for Romney, the 2012 nominee, a passing of the establishment torch, if you will, and a signal to donors and operatives to rally around the Romney-approved successor. But then Mitt threw them all a curve ball by deciding he might actually get in the race himself and in so doing he`s turned himself from Jeb`s potential kingmaker into his potential rival. Nevertheless, this meeting between the two of them has somehow stayed on the books. And while reps for Bush and Romney confirmed it was set to take place today, they have been extremely tight-lipped about the details. Earlier today, Jeb tweeted a picture of himself with some Delta employees at National Airport in Washington, D.C.; he was later spotted making his way through baggage claim at Salt Lake City International Airport. With little more information than that, we`re left with no choice but to speculate wildly about what went down when Jeb and Mitt came face to face. Did they draw straws? Divvy us the business group super PACs? Did they play Rock, Paper, Scissors, best out of three, decide which of them actually gets to run? ALL IN has just obtained exclusive footage of the meeting. We bring it to you for the first time right now. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "VEEP") "SELINA MEYER": So I think we both agree that the strongest candidate should run. "GEORGE MADDOX": Absolutely. "SELINA MEYER": And we both agree that the role of vice president could be a very significant one. "GEORGE MADDOX": You`ve certain made a compelling argument. "SELINA MEYER": You`d consider that? "GEORGE MADDOX": Absolutely. We`d love -- "SELINA MEYER": You`d be my vice president? "GEORGE MADDOX": -- for you to be my vice president. "SELINA MEYER": Huh? What did you say? "GEORGE MADDOX": It makes sense for me. You`re already vetted. "SELINA MEYER": Are you kidding me? "GEORGE MADDOX": Plus you would be the first vice president to serve under two successive presidents. "SELINA MEYER": I would rather be shot in the (INAUDIBLE) face than serve as vice president again. Seriously, in the (INAUDIBLE) face. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Joining me now to discuss what actually happened today, Robert Costa, national political reporter for "The Washington Post." So, Robert, this was a scoop on "The New York Times" last night, this meetings going to take place. What were the conditions under which it was created? ROBERT COSTA, "THE WASHINGTON POST": The invitation was issued from Jeb Bush to Mitt Romney. This happened after the November elections and Romney, of course, accepted. It was seen as one of many meetings Bush was going to do between November and February of this year as he makes a final decision. But the Romney allies I spoke to today had a very interesting say, they said that Bush made this invitation thinking Romney was not going to run. And then when Romney started to make his move toward a 2016 bid, Romney just has sat back. He knew Bush wouldn`t cancel the meeting even if Bush was frustrated with Romney`s moves. And so this gives Romney an opportunity to kind of see where Bush stands politically, who he`s talking to in terms of donors and Romney is very interested in what Jeb Bush is doing behind the scenes. Remember, we reported at "The Washington Post" that before Christmas, Bush adviser Mike Murphy and Romney met to talk through the race. HAYES: So what is the end goal for each of these men as they go into the meeting today? COSTA: They both want to believe that they still have a shot at the nomination. Romney wants to really see where are Jeb`s skills right now. Romney, according to people who know him best, has reservations about Bush`s candidacy. Thinks Bush will have the same kind of attacks on his business record like Romney had in `12. He thinks Bush`s skills are a little rusty in terms of retail politics. He wants to see is Bush the talent that everyone is talking about in these donor meetings. And from the Bush side, they really want to see, is Romney just flirting with a bid? Or is he really serious -- HAYES: What does your -- that`s the big question. What does your reporting suggest about that? COSTA: My reporting suggests that Romney is not deterred by the press criticism. He is not deterred by the criticism from some in his own party. He is driven not only by a sense of ambition but a history. I hear he is talking a lot about his father behind the scenes, George Romney, the former Michigan governor. He believes that he -- it`s in his blood, it`s part of his life to try to really seek the presidency. And he believes he was proven right. And I think he knows there is a lot of criticism out there about a third try, but I think he still is moving toward a run. HAYES: What is the state of play among the donors? I saw, I think it was -- I think it was ProPublica, but I was thinking so hard, Senate for Republican Integrity I think started calling through the Romney donor list, got a bunch of people on the fence, on the record, on the fence about whether they would re-up essentially with Romney or they would go to Jeb. It seems like that is the battle for that same set of big money bundlers and donors. COSTA: The complicated rivalry here is that a lot of the people who are Romney`s biggest donors got their careers started as Bush donors for 41. They got ambassadorships from the Bush family. And so there`s a loyalty there and those loyalists are going pretty quickly to Jeb`s side, but Romney still has a huge base of support. And when you talk to Romney people, they believe they could still raise the $100-150 million you need to win a Republican primary. And they think a lot of Jeb`s support is soft because those who went to him early didn`t think Mitt was getting in. HAYES: So what comes next? What is the timeline? I keep waiting to see who`s going to be the person to make the first official announcement among, say, the top tier candidates. What do you anticipate? COSTA: Well, Romney is giving a big speech next week in Mississippi state. Romney knows he needs to start moving toward a run in a more formal fashion in the next months. And if he doesn`t do that, he will be left behind with some of the donors. Jeb Bush, he`s out there. He`s raised a lot of money. I think he wants to have a big first quarter with his leadership right to rise back. But you have Christie, he`s going to be in Iowa; I will be with him in Iowa tomorrow in Des Moines. He`s going to be there on Saturday for Steve King`s event. Scott Walker, he thinks the battle between the establishment heavies will maybe open up a path to him. So it is fluid right now. And no one`s really in the race, but all -- just trying to test the amount of support they could get. HAYES: There will be anywhere between 15 and 20 people running? COSTA: Right, so the consequence of that is money. And if it`s a crowded field and you don`t get a bounce out of New Hampshire or South Carolina that`s going to really propel you through to the nomination process, you need to survive long term. And all the conservatives look at Huckabee and Santorum, they think, I need to play long term. HAYES: And this is the context everyone should understand, what we call the invisible primary, which is lining up donors, this is a small subsection of the American electorate, very, very wealthy people, extremely unrepresentative, not just unrepresentative of America, unrepresentative of the Republican party, even the Republican base. COSTA: And this first super PAC, that`s what`s really important to remember. They`re not to run the campaigns, not to -- it`s to keep these ads going on the outside of the campaign. HAYES: Beauty pageants judged by billionaires, American democracy in 2015. Robert Costa, thank you. COSTA: Thank you. HAYES: In his first conversations with Republican power brokers about his new plans for 2016, Mitt Romney said he is intent on running to the right of Jeb Bush, according to "The Washington Post." Now I think this is an interesting concept for a couple reasons. First of all, why? What exactly would that gain him? And second, it is remarkable to see the unselfconsciousness with which Mitt Romney talks about which version of himself he`s going to try out for this campaign. There has been a pro-choice Mitt Romney, a model he ultimately abandoned. There was a moderate Mitt, then a severely conservative version. Now there is Romney 3.0, the more conservative than Jeb edition. But if Romney`s supposed to be running to the right of Jeb Bush, he certainly picked a strange way of going about it. In his big speech at the RNC`s winter meeting last week, Romney`s message was all about income inequality. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MITT ROMNEY, FORMER GOVERNOR OF MASSACHUSETTS: It is a tragedy, a human tragedy that the middle class in this country by and large does not believe the future will be better than the past or their kids will have a brighter future than their own. Under President Obama, the rich have gotten richer, income inequality has gotten worse. And there are more people in poverty in America than ever before. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: This week he has been talking about manmade climate change. At a speech in Salt Lake City last night, Romney described himself as "one of those Republicans who believe the world is getting warmer and people are contributing to the change." He called for, quote, "real leadership" to deal with coal emissions. That kind of rhetoric has managed to alienate one of his formerly staunch supporters, "The Washington Post" columnist Jennifer Rubin, who tweeted, quote, "Romney now into climate change? No really, maybe he will go back to being pro-choice, is he kidding?" And that`s coming from someone who was widely criticized in 2012 over her perceived advocacy for the Romney campaign. There is something going on here that Jennifer Rubin and everyone else in the political class seems to miss. And I think I have finally figured it out. Mitt Romney is trying to get my endorsement. And I just want to tell you right now, Mitt, because I know you`re watching, I see what you`re doing. You know that talking about stagnant wages and carbon emissions is the key to my heart. Keep it up. Joining me now, Scott Helman, staff writer for "The Boston Globe," and coauthor of "The Real Romney," so I guess this is someone who has managed several iterations of reinvention throughout his political career in various contexts. It doesn`t seem implausible that he will launch another one here, but of course the problem is if he does that, that just reaffirms the image of him as someone willing to say anything. SCOTT HELMAN, STAFF WRITER, "THE BOSTON GLOBE": Right. We were having this exact conversation four years ago, he certainly has a gift for reinvention. He`s shown it over and over again. I have my doubts as to whether or not this will really be a serious candidacy or not. But you`re right. Some of the things he is saying are clearly different points of emphasis than he has made in the past. HAYES: I think that the climate aspect is fascinating. He was someone that was governor of Massachusetts. They signed on to a regional cap and trade system. There is even a letter in which he talks about this preamble letter signed by the governor, talking about the fact of carbon emissions and climate change. It does strike me that there will be some tipping point in that Republican field where it gets too embarrassing to continue to deny it, and you might actually see some of these primary contestants edge out and say yes, this is what the science says. HELMAN: Yes, that is certainly possible. And you`re right. As Governor Romney took a few different actions to act on climate change, and at the time he was seen as somebody that was in that party but believing in it and willing to do something about it. Then he moved very quickly away from those positions when he ran very hard to the right in 2008. You know we saw in each of these campaigns he has run, he has been just attacked mercilessly by his rivals in the Republican primary. It was McCain that had that great line when he was smiling maniacally and he said, you`re right, Governor Romney, you are the candidate of change. So I don`t really know what is left to say about that. Maybe Romney figures if he runs again, everyone is sort of blown all they can in that regard and there`s nothing else to say. HAYES: Do people in Romney World think he is going to run again? Like the people in Massachusetts, the people you talk to, do they think this is some weird kind of ego turn in which he needs for his own sense of identity to reassert his primacy in this party after that loss and then he can hand off the baton, or he is really going to do it? HELMAN: To be honest, I`m not close enough right now to tell you, Chris, but I do know that as Robert was talking about, he has long seen this as his destiny, and I think he is someone also who genuinely wants to contribute. He`s not somebody who`s going to retire and putter around in his garage, right. So I think he is probably a little bit bored. He sees an opening here, he wants to stay in the conversation. I think he genuinely believes he would be a great president and his tight circle has always believed that. So clearly they`re in his ear saying that. How far this goes? Does he really take it as far as he is threatening to? Again, I have my doubts on that. I also have my doubts that at the end of the day, donors and activists and voters are going to give him a third chance. I think it`s a tough bar to get across. HAYES: I think these things have a momentum all of their own. I really do. I think people start thinking about being president and start thinking about running for president, they start out being like, oh, man, that doesn`t seem like a very pleasant enterprise. And then more and more people around them start saying you could be the next president, and you start to think, get up in the morning, look at yourself in the mirror and I could be the next president. And he has already gone through getting over the unpleasantness. He`s in some ways closer than anyone else. At one level is seems sociopathic to want to do it again, given what it requires. But the other level, it`s like -- he is making a choice in the margins in a way that other people aren`t. HELMAN: Yes, absolutely. And again, it`s so funny to be talking about this. Here we are in 2015. These are the same conversations we were having the last campaign, right? He had done it before, he is better at it, he`s more seasoned, he has been through the hard part. He has brought his wife around. Again, and I just think ultimately we`re hearing some of the same rationale for running that he had four years ago in terms of criticizing the Obama economy. The fact of it is as everybody knows the direction of the country will change when Obama leaves anyway. It`s a different argument than it was four years ago, when it`s like, look, I told you four years ago Obama was the wrong guy. I was right. Now give me a chance. Well, you got your chance, and now someone else is going to be president, something totally different. So what is there left to, you know, to run on? (CROSSTALK) HAYES: I think the idea that voters respond to, "I was right," is pretty misbegotten. Thank you, Scott Helman. HELMAN: My pleasure. HAYES: Patriots quarterback Tom Brady managed to reference ISIS in his Deflategate press conference because, hey, why the heck not. It was a weird news day. We will give you the context. Plus, Lindsey Graham wants the GOP to put its best minds together to finally once and for all define rape. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), S.C.: I hope and pray that we can find a way to deal with the current conflict about definitions. And if we do not, shame on us all. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Shame indeed. And that`s ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: Breaking news at this hour, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has died. Saudi television cut to Quranic verses early on Friday, which often signifies the death of a senior royal and the king`s death is now confirmed. King Abdullah, age 90, had been at hospital for several weeks. He will be buried after the third prayer of the day, the same day of his death in Saudi Arabia tomorrow, East Coast time. Crown Prince Solomon automatically became king at his brother`s death. He`s also elderly and reportedly in ill health. And as we`ve been reporting, liberal blogger Raif Badawi was sentenced in Saudi Arabia to 10 years imprisonment and 1,000 lashes, 50 a week over 20 weeks, for insulting Islam. His next round of flogging has been postponed twice due to medical reasons from the first flogging earlier this month. It would be a pretty excellent gesture to begin his new kingdom for the king to decide to spare him. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) SEN. HARRY REID, MAJORITY LEADER: As far as I know, I can`t believe that the National Football League with the billions of dollars they make couldn`t at least determine how much air should be in a football and why it should be left up to the teams. JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, I tell you what, having been a receiver, I like a softer ball, that`s all I can tell you. (LAUGHTER) (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: The scandal over the allegedly deflated footballs used by the New England Patriots in their victory Sunday over Indianapolis Colts in the NFL playoffs has now reached a level where the Senate`s top Democrat and the vice president himself are offering up their thoughts on it. And today, the two men at the center of the controversy, Patriots coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady were forced to address at length the scandal that is now dominating the national conversation in the run up to the Super Bowl. First up was Belichick, who gave an inordinately long statement by the standards of the legendarily taciturn coach, eight minutes that basically amounted to, "I have nothing to do with this. I have no knowledge of the balls being deflated. You need to go ask Tom." (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BELICHICK: Tom`s personal preferences on his footballs are something that he can talk about in much better detail and give more information than I could possibly provide. To tell you that in my entire coaching career, I have never talked to any player, staff member, about football air pressure, that is not a subject I have ever brought up. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: After Belichick`s 8-minute opening statement, he took a few minutes to answer reporters` questions, and answer he did, in classic inimitable Belichick style. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BELICHICK: I had no knowledge whatsoever of this situation until Monday morning. I had no knowledge, I have no explanation. I was completely and totally unaware. I`ve told you everything I know. I don`t have an explanation. I`ve told you everything I know. There`s nothing else I can add to it. I told you everything I know. I`ve told them everything I know. I have no explanation for what happened. I don`t have an explanation for what happened. I don`t have an explanation for what happened. I don`t have an explanation for what happened. I have told you all I know about the subject from my perspective. So that`s where we are. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: After Belichick was done doing his best Marshawn Lynch impersonation, then later this afternoon it was Tom Brady`s turn to address the media in a long, positively surreal press conference. Brady denied wrongdoing. He said his team had beaten the Colts fair and square and that he would much rather be talking about something else. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) QUESTION: Can you answer right now, is Tom Brady a cheater? BRADY: I don`t believe so, I mean, I feel like I`ve always played within the rules. I would never do anything to break the rules. You know, I didn`t alter the ball in any way. I have no knowledge of anything. I had no knowledge of any wrongdoing of any -- QUESTION: -- you did anything wrong? BRADY: Yes, I`m very comfortable saying that. I`m very comfortable saying that nobody did it, as far as I know. I don`t know everything. I also understand that I was in a locker room preparing for a game. I don`t know what happened over the course of the process with the footballs. Things are going to be fine, this isn`t ISIS, this isn`t -- you know, no one`s dying. But, you know, we will get through this and hopefully we can really start preparing for Seattle and get our mind focused there. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: But he also said he likes footballs to be inflated to 12.5 pounds per square inch, which is the lowest level legally allowed by NFL. And that he had talked to the equipment staff who told him, they, too, had not altered the balls in any way. Meanwhile, Richard Sherman, the outspoken Seattle Seahawks cornerback, known for his braggadocio, say yesterday that while he didn`t think the Deflategate amounted to all that much, the public might want to reassess the Patriots` golden boy quarterback, who he said does plenty of trash talking of his own. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RICHARD SHERMAN, SEAHAWKS CORNERBACK: I think people somehow get a skewed vision of Tom Brady, that he`s just a clean-cut, does everything right and never says a bad word to anyone. And we know him to be otherwise. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Joining me now is David Zirin, sports editor for "The Nation". That Brady press conference -- also author of "Game Over." That Brady press conference was one of the most bizarre press conferences I`ve ever seen, first because it seemed like he had made a bet with some offensive lineman before he came out about how often he could the word "balls," and yes, 7-year old in everyone was kind of giggling at that. But also there was this incredibly polarized response. We were sitting in the office, watching it, and the Pats fans were like, oh, he totally seems like he`s telling the truth. Everyone else was like, he`s lying through his teeth. What was your reaction? DAVE ZIRIN, SPORTS EDITOR, "THE NATION": Yes, Tom Brady was certainly testy in that press conference, Chris. Look, when I was watching this, I found Brady to be so unconvincing, that by the time he was done, I was convinced that ISIS was somehow behind the deflating of the balls. (LAUGHTER) ZIRIN: Before that game. And the text messages were flying fast and furious form former football players, pro football insiders who were just saying this is the biggest load of hooey I have ever seen. And that`s the main issue is that the Patriots don`t get the benefit of the doubt because they fail what I call the Queen of England test. Like if I said to you right now, Chris, hey, I heard a rumor that Mitt Romney had an affair with the Queen of England, you would say that`s the stupidest thing I ever heard, get this guy off the air. But if I said, hey, I heard a rumor that Bill Clinton had an affair with the Queen of England, you might say word? And that`s the thing about the -- they have no benefit of the doubt in this, particularly from other NFL teams in players who are so tired, as Richard Sherman alluded to, of hearing about this Patriots dynasty, and golden boy Tom Brady, when a lot of people think that something stinks in Belichickville. HAYES: The other -- well, what I -- what was also fascinating, the subtext here, I mean, basically everyone knows factually what -- the league tests them two hours before the game, tests all the balls. The team takes care of its own. Then at some point in the first half, it appears after a Colts pick, it looks like the Colts basically -- one of their equipment managers got their hands on what was a Patriots ball and said this doesn`t feel right. They tested it, they then tested all the balls, turned out they were underinflated, right? So the question becomes what happened? At what point did they get underinflated? And what had today was that it seemed like Belichick threw Brady under the bus. And Brady said I have no idea. And what I see this all heading towards is some poor equipment manager at the bottom of the totem pole is 100 percent going to take the fall for this. ZIRIN: Absolutely. If I was an equipment manager for the Patriots, I would not even be boiling eggs at this point. I would -- HAYES: Lawyer up. ZIRIN: I would hope that I didn`t have a mortgage. I would be like let me get out of here because this is going to get kicked down the train until somebody`s gone because the Patriots want to protect their image. And Roger Goodell, the lovely commissioner of the National Football League, has a vested interest in defending the New England Patriots because their owner, Bob Kraft, was the first person to come out and defend Roger Goodell when everybody from Bob Costas -- everybody was saying that Roger Goodell should not be commissioner of the National Football League. So of all the billionaires who Roger Goodell has leased a portion of his soul and credibility to, Bob Kraft actually holds the biggest lease. So he`s not going to say anything against him. He is not going to invoke the now famous rule 17, clause two, which actually would allow him to say the Colts are now in the Super Bowl and, my goodness, if he did that, you might have to preempt MSNBC for the next week and a half. HAYES: Are you kidding me? If he did that it would be wall to wall on every network until the Super Bowl, no question. Dave Zirin. ZIRIN: Absolutely. Let`s be clear. That would be a defeat for ISIS. HAYES: Thank you very much. All right. I want to show you this chart. So what that incredible jump from 2011 to 2014, what that represents, ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: All right, I`m going to show you a chart. I want you to take a close look at it, try to figure out what it is. All right, as you can see in the year 2014, something spiked particularly compared to previous years, I mean, really spiked. You might think that is not good, unless it is American median wage growth, or number of Americans winning Noble prizes, or the college graduation rate, but no, it`s measles. That`s measles. That is a chart of new measles cases from 2001 to 2014. There were 644 new cases of measles last year in the U.S., the biggest number since the 1950s. One outbreak, which is believed to begun in early December in Disneyland of all places and another theme park, continues to spread. There are now over 60 reported cases. As headlined by the Washington Post, Disneyland measles outbreak strikes in antivaccination hotbed of California. But with cases also in Utah, Washington State, Colorado, Oregon and Arizona. And unfortunately, measles is highly contagious. Do you remember how we spent weeks on this program underlying the fact that Ebola is not easily spread, not highly contagious. That is not true for measles. Quoting CDC officials, "when [infected people] sneeze or cough, droplets spray into the air and the droplets remain active and contagious on infected surfaces for up to two hours." But here`s the thing, despite how contagious is it, the overwhelming majority of us don`t get measles, because the overwhelming majority of us get vaccinated. In fact, in 2000 due to vaccination the United States declared that measles was eliminated from the country, according to CDC. Now it`s back. And while there is not yet a consensus on who patient zero was, perhaps, just perhaps what there definitely is consensus on is that measles are bad, vaccinations are good and the later prevents the former. So for the love of all that is holy, please, please make sure you and your little ones especially are vaccinates. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: Today is a big day, possibly the biggest day of the year for the antiabortion movement. This was the scene earlier today on the streets of Washington, D.C. at the annual march for life. It`s timed every year to mark the anniversary of the Supreme Court`s decision in Roe V. Wade. And it was supposed to be a triumphant moment for the movement, a day to proudly display their cozy relationship with the new Republican house leadership. In fact, as they marched Republicans had planned to pass what is essentially a federal post 20 week abortion ban. It was supposed to pass without a hitch just like it did in the last congress. But what happened this year was something very different. These protesters from this afternoon, they`re not outside of a pro choice liberal Democratic`s office, those protesters are gathered outside anti-abortion Republican congresswoman Renee Elmers office. And believe me, they are not happy. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REV. PATRICK MAHONEY, CHRISTIAN DEFENSE COALITION: A new congress, a congress with the highest majority of Republicans in the House in many decades, a Senate now under the leadership of Mitch McConnell. They could not have sent a worse signal to the pro life community and they are in essence are getting us to ask the question why should we work for Republican candidates? (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Now, the latest dust up in the new Republican caucus comes courtesy of the party`s recent troubled electoral history with rape. It all started a couple weeks ago according to The National Journal, citing sources who were in the room at the time, when a group of GOP women, including congresswoman Renee Elmers, Kristi Noem, and Cythia Lummis approached majority whip Steve Scalise about their concerns with the language in the proposed 20 week ban bill. It was sponsored by congressman Trent Franks. Now the women reportedly took particular issue specifically with the bill`s rape exemption language, which stipulates a woman does not qualify for the exemption from the ban if she has not reported her rape to law enforcement. In other words, in the eyes of this proposed law, the estimated two-thirds of rapes that are not reported are not really raps. A week later, Elmers spoke out about her concerns at the Republican policy retreat, telling the National Journal, quote, "we got into trouble last year and I think we need to be careful again. We need to be smart about how we are moving forward." After that, as many as two dozen other Republicans have raised concerns about HR36, according to The Washington Post. And on Tuesday, Congresswoman Elmers and Jackie Walorski went one step further. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. JACKIE WALORSKI, (R) INDIANA: Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to remove myself as a cosponsor of HR-36. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Without objection. For what purpose is the gentle lady from North Carolina to seek recognition? REP. RENEE ELMERS, (R) NORTH CAROLINA: Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to remove myself from HR-36. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Without objection. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Even after two women removed themselves as co-sponsors, House leadership remained committed to the bill as drafted. Yesterday in the afternoon, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy told National Journal, quote, "we`re still planning on moving forward with the bill tomorrow." At a closed door conference meeting when according to the journal he delivered that message to a room full of Republican women, apparently it did not go over well. Marsha Blackburn, a lead sponsor of the bill reportedly gave, a quote, "impassioned speech in conference, noting that because of the rape clause, the GOP was again fumbling over this sensitive subject." Renee Elmers reportedly repeated her critique. And sources told the journal that Congresswoman Walorski left the meeting early. Ultimately, leadership relented on the bill that was once a foregone conclusion. (BEGIN VDIEO CLIP) RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC ANCHOR: Right now there is some just breaking news to report tonight out of Washington, a dramatic and very unexpected development in congress. Late tonight, just within the last few minutes, just since we`ve been on the air, this has apparently all apart. House GOP abruptly drops plan to debate abortion bill after revolt by GOP women and others. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: The women in the House Republican caucus may have scored a huge victory over their overwhelming male colleagues last night, but in the process they made themselves a whole new movement of enemies. Joining me now, MSNBC national reporter Erin Carmon, who spent her day in Washington, D.C. at the march for life. Erin, tell me what that scene was like. There was so much furry I saw among conservative anti-abortion organizers, pundits, writers on social media last night directed at Renee Elmers and Marsha Blackburn and Walorski over this -- what they perceive as a betrayal. What did it -- how did it manifest today? ERIN CARMON, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: There was certainly a lot of anger in the grass roots. But I think that they know that the 20 week ban will be back as the House leadership planned. I mean, on the one hand, this was an enormous show of strength from the GOP women. And I don`t want to underestimate that. I don`t want to understate how much it cost them in terms of base votes. They have a -- this is a group of people that don`t want to see any kind of rape exception, let along a rape exception that involves reporting to the police. And, by the way, that rape exception reporting to the police is noxious. One activist told me today that the reason you have to have it in is she said get perpetrators off the streets and some women lie about rape. So, that`s really what`s at stake here. That said, the vast thrust of the 20 week ban will remain in place. These women have said that they will vote for it. This was not a strong show of solidarity for fellow women beyond the specific optics of rape. So while, yes, it`s going to cost them with the base and the people that I talked to today were furious, I think they know that ultimately that they`re going to deliver and that this bill is their preferred vehicle for a direct assault on Row v. Wade. It was no coincidence that this is what they wanted to pass today. I don`t think it`s going anywhere. HAYES: So there`s two issues. One, just quickly on this -- on rape and why they keep having political problems with it. It seems to me the problem is the philosophy to which most of the base adheres really doesn`t want to make a distinction because they think that the fetus is ultimately blameless and so that philosophically their opposed to it, politically it`s a dead-end to include an exception for -- to not include an exception for rape, which is why they end up doing this over and over. CARMON: Right. Well, there is vast daylight between the activists who don`t want to see any kind of exception and the average American who frankly has internally contradictory views, which is they suddenly feel like they have more empathy for people who need abortions once you start talking about sexual assault. There are lots of reasons why people get abortions after 20 weeks that also involve desperate circumstances outside of rape. But I think it`s important to note that in 2013, when this bill passed, as you pointed out, people like Marsha Blackburn sponsored it, they stewarded it on the floor. HAYES: With the same language. CARMON: The exact same language. I feel like I`m the only person who remembers this, it was the exact same language. And no one made any issue of it then. So I`m just a little bit skeptical of this vast uprising of GOP women. Now some of them are facing really competitive races in 2016. There is going to be a presidential electorate. There`s going to be swing districts like Renee Elmers. North Carolina certainly is a swing state. So they have reason to be afraid. But I think even if this bill were to come back and it would have a broader rape exception, it would still be an attack on all of the women who need abortions after 20 weeks. HAYES: And what is clear, I think, is that we are going to see 20 week ban legislation and that it going to make its way before this court at some point. That seems unavoidable. Erin Carmon, thank you very much. CARMON: Thank you. HAYES: It is an exciting night here at All In as we debut a new feature we`re calling jokes you shouldn`t make. Plus, is this the only acceptable way to now watch the Cosby Show? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don`t worry, I`m good for it. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You promised me you were going to pay me back today. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The day is not over is it? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What are you two doing? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE; Theo owes me $5. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You, too? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Look, Vanessa, I don`t owe you $5. I owe you three. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, lately I`ve been hearing you owe. And at the front and the back of it, I hear the name Theo. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: That`s ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: Tonight on ALL IN, as promised we are introducing a new feature we`re calling jokes you shouldn`t make. Tonight`s jokes you shouldn`t make story comes to us from Germany, which has over the past several months seen the rise of right-wing anti-Islamic, anti-immigration rhetoric, in particular in the form of the Pegida group, which stands for, in German, Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West. Weekly Pegida rallies in Germany may unnerve anyone cognizant of 20th Century history. But the most recent rally was cancelled and anti-Pegida rallies draw thousands. So, here`s a joke you shouldn`t make if you are the leader of Pegida. Don`t post a selfie in which you are posing as Hitler. Even if you claim it coincided with the release of your satirical audio book about Hitler, even if you did it back in 2012 and it`s just now surfacing. Too bad. Too late. The guy in that picture Lutz Bachmann has now resigned his post as leader of Pegida. The movement, however, still going strong. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: In his first week on the air, new Comedy Central host Larry Wilmore tackled the controversy surrounding comedy legend Bill Cosby. The question that seems particularly relevant as the list of women accusing Cosby of sexual assault continues to grow. And Cosby continues to deny the allegations. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) LARRY WILMORE, THE NIGHTLY SHOW: I was really taken by that sheer number of women that came out, and all of the skepticism, even after the number. Why do you think we can`t believe women? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don`t know, rape is the only crime that we -- yes we have a system of innocent until proven guilty. But we`re a society and I mean, community members, police officers, district attorneys, really go so far out of their way to discredit victims as if we can`t accept the idea that a man, particularly a powerful man, would take measures to take something from a woman. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: More than two dozen women have gone public with accusations of sexual assault against Cosby, all of which he and his attorneys have strongly and repeatedly denied. Cosby has not been charged with a crime. Some celebrities who have had professional relationships with Bill Cosby have begun to openly speak about the allegations. Perhaps most notably this week, former tonight show host Jay Leno. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JAY LENO, COMEDIAN: This whole Cosby thing, Hannibal Burress, started with him, standup comedian. He made a flatout statement the reverberated around the world. If that was on TV, it would have been edited. If it had been on any other medium it would have been edited, but because somebody just filmed it and put it out there, you`re getting your news raw and unfiltered, which I think is fantastic. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you watch that Cosby thing and just think sad? Or do you think -- what`s your take on that? This was a guy that was... LENO: I mean, I don`t know why it is so hard to believe women. I mean you go to Saudi Arabia and you need two women to testify against a man, here you need 25. (END VIDEO CLIP) HAYES: Former Cosby Show co-star Malcalm-Jamal Warner also spoke out this week telling Billboard magazine, quote "just as it`s painful to hear any woman talk about sexual assault, whether true or not, it`s just as painful to watch my friend and mentor go through this." People with personal and professional ties to Bill Cosby aren`t the only ones wrestling with how to react to the allegations and what they should think about Cosby, his career and his body of work. It`s something fans are considering and reconsidering, too. If you grew up with the Cosby Show, if you believe these women are telling the truth about Bill Cosby, well, then, what exactly do you do? Does that interfere with your love of his work? Should it? And Bill Cosby, let`s be reminded, is not the only beloved entertainer who has been accused of sexual misconduct. We`ll look at three other artists who continue to work in the face of ugly allegations and what it`s meant for their careers and their body of work next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: Joining me now, Hillary Crosley-Cocker, staff writer for Jezebel.com, founder and editorial director of Parlor Magazine.com; and friend of the show Tera Dowdell. So, I have been thinking a lot about what do you do with this? So, just -- let`s just say the blanket thing, which is that -- because you know, nothing has been legally established, they strenuously deny the allegations. I cannot convict him here on this television show and don`t want to. But for people making these decisions about who they believe, what they believe what they believe about what this guy did, what he might have done, how do you integrate that into like, "can you watch The Cosby Show. Can you watch the Cosby Show? HILLARY CROSELY-COCKER, JEZEBEL.COM: You can. It`s tough. HAYES: Can you. CROSLEY-COCKER: Can I? Can I watch it? HAYES: Can I watch the Cosby Show? Yes. Can I watch it without thinking oh,man, bathrobes, Janice Dickenson, Beverly Johnson, the two basketball teams full of women accusing him of either drugging them or sexually assaulting them or drugging them to then be sexually assaulted then kicking them out because they called him an MFer, like, no, I can`t. All those things are happening as Theo`s like, but my allowance, dad. HAYES: Right. But what that means is that functionally, like, that body of work, right -- as of now, like you are not going to be watching Cosby Show or Fat Albert or any other -- you`re not going to be watching Bill Cosby stand up specials, right? CROSLEY-COCKER: Oh, that. No. The dentist joke will not be as funny anymore, because then it sounds like we`re making jokes about drugging people? HAYES: Do you feel the same way? TERA DOWDELL, POLITICAL CONSULTANT: Well, I`m of the belief that I have to separate the art from the man. Do I admire the man? No, I do not. Do I admire the art? Yes, I do. I`ve learned in politics that where there is fire, there`s a gigantic -- where there`s smoke, there is a gigantic blaze. So for me, I definitely am in the camp that I think he did it. But at the same time, I will say this, I am not a fan of double standards. And so when I look at some of these other folks, like our very own founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson, who -- they`re speaking... HAYES: That`s a good point. It`s like can you ever read the Constitution or the Declaration of the Independence again knowing what he did? DOWDELL: Exactly. I mean, he was a slave owner, and you know he was with -- they called an affair. It was a 15-year-old slave that -- is that really an affair or is that rape? HAYES: And let`s also be clear. Just an historical side note on Sally Hemmings when people talk about, well, that was so long ago. That was a scandal at the time. Political opponents ran on that at the time. People thought that was messed up at the time. So, just to bracket that, you know, so people understand... DOWDELL: And she was 15, historically. CROSLEY-COCKER: And people tend to gloss over things. HAYES: There are also other people -- just because I feel like to (inaudible) out the conversation, right -- and again we`re dealing with like varied levels of allegations/legal proceedings, so I want to be very specific here. There`s Roman Polanski, right, pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with a minor in 1977. The victim was 13-years-old at the time. He fled the U.S. after serving (inaudible). This is someone who has been -- the legal system has found him -- this is not an alleged anymore, right. Still making movies, still widely admired as an artist. There`s Woody Allen, again this is an accusation by his 7-year-old daughter at the time that she molested him. He denies the allegation very strenuously, was never charged, but again Woody Allen celebrated, beloved artist. DOWDELL: Oscar-winning actresses are in his films. HAYES: That`s right. And then there`s R. Kelly, who -- no, but like... CROSLEY-COCKER: Not (inaudible). HAYES: R. Kelly was accused of some of the most heinous stuff you can imagine, right. CROSLEY-COCKER: Saw the tape. HAYES: A sex tape with an under age girl, a tape that was presented to a jury. He was acquitted, right. So there`s this sort of legal bar. But I feel like with R. Kelly it was like I remember when we were having the discussion about R. Kelly we`re having now with Bill Cosby, and now it`s just like -- oh, R. Kelly is just back. It`s kind of like he`s just back. CROSLEY-COCKER: I don`t think he is just back,though. I think he really wants to be back... HAYES: Will you bump an R. Kelly song at a party? CROSLEY-COCKER: So here`s the thing. I`m an African-American, so if I`m at a family reunion, if there`s a wedding, Step in the Name of Love is coming on. Am I going to then run out of the room? No. But am I going to be like, oh my god I remember watching that porno of R. Kelly in a Bronx apartment and being like this is -- she`s 5-years-old. Yet, am I not going to have that moment? Absolutely I`m going to have that moment. And that`s kind of my take on it. HAYES: But that gets to what Tara is saying, which is just like you separate them and it`s like there`s this body of work. R. Kelly isn`t unquestionably massively talented musician and singer, like stipulated. And you`re just going to play those songs. That is a struggle, though. I was at karaoke recently where someone sang an R. Kelly song and I was the whole time being like, like this is a jam, though. CROSLEY-COCKER: It`s the jam. But I think the kicker is acknowledging the history, right. And I think so many people want to just listen to the song and they want to just watch the show without saying all of this backstory. And I remember saying to a lot of people when R. Kelly came out like the entire time, because I began as an entertainment journalist and I`d be like, OK, so you like that song so it`s cool for him to pee on little girls. You`re cool with that. Like you`re fine with that, that doesn`t come up... HAYES: But why is it any different now? CROSLEY-COCKER: It`s not to me. It`s been the same the whole time. HAYES: But you`re saying the requirement is that you think of it when the song comes on. CROSLEY-COCKER: Yeah, like for... DOWDELL: No, I think that for me the requirement is that if you`re going to talk about somebody even as a great artist, I think that the whole story needs to be told. It should not be a footnote, the whole story needs to be told. I mean, it`s different for R. Kelly because he was acquitted. So, you know, so that he`s been not proven guilty of a crime, I mean in the legal sense. I mean, he`s not been proven guilty of a crime. But at the same time I do think that in these situations the whole story should be told. HAYES: Right. But then it comes down to -- the problem, right... DOWDELL: But for everybody, not a double standard. Don`t be like Woody is cool, but R. Kelly... HAYES: Although, again, the (inaudible) getting into litigating the very different allegations and the number of the people. But, yeah. I mean, the point is that like, can you still watch that thing, consume that thing and not feel somehow morally implicated. CROSLEY-COCKER: No. HAYES: You can`t. And yet, I will admit that I do. CROSLEY-COCKER: Right. HAYES: All right, that`s where we ended up. Hillary Crosley-Cocker and Tara Dowdell, thank you very much. All right, quick quick correction for something said earlier in the show. I said the number of new measles cases in 2014 was the worst since the 1950s, I meant to say the worst since the 1990. Big difference, but a bad year for measles nonetheless. That is ALL IN for this evening. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END