IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

All In with Chris Hayes, Transcript 5/16/2016

Guests: Healy Baumgardner, Sarah Isgur Flores, Charlie Pierce, Rick Wilson, Barry Bennett, McKay Coppins, Bob Garfield

Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: May 16, 2016 Guest: Healy Baumgardner, Sarah Isgur Flores, Charlie Pierce, Rick Wilson, Barry Bennett, McKay Coppins, Bob Garfield.


CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight on ALL IN --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s interesting, the times got better, and he got worse.

HAYES: "The New York Times" reports on Donald Trump`s treatment of women and tonight those women are speaking out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was not happy with the way that the article was written.

HAYES: How the Trump campaign and Donald himself are pushing back.

Then, why third party talk won`t go away in spite of dire Republican predictions.

REINCE PRIEBUS, RNC CHAIRMAN: It`s a suicide mission for our country.

HAYES: New questions about Democratic Party unity at the state convention turns ugly in Nevada.

And the most novel defense yet of Donald Trump`s publicist, John Miller.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: James Addison, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, they all ruled under pseudonyms.

HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.


HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.

Ever since the start of his feud with Megyn Kelly last summer, Donald Trump has been widely criticized for the way he talks about women in public.

Now, thanks to big front-page report on Saturday in the "New York Times," Trump`s private treatment of women is in the spotlight. "The Times" says it conducted more than 50 interviews with dozens of women who worked in Trump`s orbit or knew him socially, 11 of whom were quoted by name.

The result is a somewhat contradictory portrait of a man who, while hiring someone in the senior roles in her business, and routinely doling out career advice and encouragement, seeing women primarily in their capacity to be sexual objects. According to Carrie Prejean, Miss California 2009, in her book, Trump once asked contestants in his Miss USA pageant to evaluate each other telling them one of them, quote, "I don`t care if she`s sweet, is she hot?" A longtime Trump executive named Barbara Res told that "The Times" that Trump once remarked, "You like your candy, it was him reminding me I was overweight."

Trump`s fixation with physical appearance even extended to his own daughter. According to Brooke Antoinette Mahealani Lee, recounting an incident in 1997 when she was Miss Universe. Lee says Ivanka Trump was on stage co-hosting the Miss Teen USA pageant when Trump turned to her to ask, "Don`t you think my daughter`s hot? She`s hot, right?" Ivanka, who, let`s just note, is his daughter, was 16 at the time.

In another incident, a woman named Jill Harth was working with her then- boyfriend in a beauty pageant in Atlantic City with Trump when she says the real estate mogul made unwanted physical advances. In a 1996 deposition, Harth described Trump asking her boyfriend, "Are you sleeping with her?" And being dismissive of the relationship.

On another occasion, when the three went out to dinner, Harth recounted in her deposition, quote, "Basically he name dropped throughout the dinner when he wasn`t groping me under the table. Let me just say, this was a very traumatic thing working for him."

Trump has been tweeting up a storm about his displeasure with "The Times" story, including this one from yesterday. "The Failing `New York Times` wrote yet another hit piece on me. All are impressed with how nicely I treated women. They found nothing. A joke."

And just last hour or so, quote, "No wonder `The New York Times` is failing, who can believe what they write after the false, malicious and libelous story they did on me."

Today, one of the women named in the story is disputing the paper`s account of her interaction with Trump. According to the report, Rowanne Brewer Lane met Trump at a pool party in Mar-a-Lago in 1990 when she was a 26- year-old model.

I`m quoting here, "He suddenly took me by the hand and started showing me around the mansion", "The Times" quoted her as saying. "He asked me if I had a swimsuit with me. I said, `No, I hadn`t intended to swim.` He took me in a room, opened drawers and asked me to put on a swim suit."

Then, according to "The Times", he took her outside to show her off to the crowd. "He brought out to the pool and said, "That is a stunning Trump girl, isn`t it?"

The two would go on to date for several months. In an interview with FOX News this morning, Brewer-Lane didn`t dispute the paper`s version of the events, just the conclusions they drew from those events.


ROWANNE BREWER LANE: They did take quotes from what I said and they put a negative connotation on it, they spun it to where it appeared negative. I did not have a negative experience with Donald Trump. He never made me feel like I was being demeaned in any way, he never offended me in any way. He was very gracious.


HAYES: Following that interview on FOX, Trump actually called the control rooms of both CNN and this network, MSNBC, to make sure producers had seen Brewer Lane`s interview. Brewer-lane then went on to appear on this network and CNN to tell her side of the story.

But according to one woman quoted at length for "The Times", Trump`s behavior toward women should give voters pause. Barbara Res was Trump`s head of construction in the 1980s, at the time when there weren`t a lot of prominent women in real estate, and she credits Trump with giving her a chance.

In a live chat today with one of "The New York Times" reporter, she said her former boss is not fit to be president.


BARBARA RES, FORMER TRUMP EXECUTIVE: He thinks he`s great for women but he says terrible things about women. When you are a person in a presidential position, you are not Howard Stern. You can`t just say the first thing that comes to your mind, even if it does come to your mind. You can`t rate women. You can`t talk about their bodies. You can`t say you`re not a 10 if you don`t have a certain breast size.

So, no, it has nothing to do with whether or not he should be president, it has to do with the character that he`s presenting. And that`s not, in my opinion, fit for the presidency.


HAYES: Barbara Res plans to vote for Hillary Clinton.

Joining me now, Healy Baumgardner, senior press representative for the Trump campaign, and Sara Isgur Flores is former deputy campaign manager for Carly Fiorina.

Ms. Baumgardner, let me start with you. I mean, even before "The Times" article, there`s the whole archive of the Howard Stern interviews which Ms. Res just referenced. I guess my question to you is, what do you say to people who have looked at all this and concluded that basically, Donald Trump is a pig, that he`s a sexist?

HEALY BAUMGARDNER, TRUMP CAMPAIGN SER. PRESS REP.: I think that they`re making an incorrect conclusion. He`s a total champion of women. Otherwise I wouldn`t be working for him.

I mean, the true sexist in this race is Hillary Clinton.

HAYES: OK. But then do you not see anything problematic with, say, groping an employee underneath the able during a meal?

BAUMGARDNER: These are accusations made by people who interact or know Mr. Trump, who are trying to gain notoriety, because he`s doing so well in this campaign. They`re meritless.

HAYES: Well, that one was from a deposition way before this campaign started.

BAUMGARDNER: And if you continue to read "The New York Times" story, she retracts that.

HAYES: She doesn`t retract it.

BAUMGARDNER: She does and she clarified and said she was not mistreated.

HAYES: Sara, let me ask you this. There was a moment in the campaign when you`re working for Carly Fiorina, when Donald Trump said about Carly Fiorina, I mean, "look at that face, would you want to vote for that?" How do you understand that? How did the campaign understand that comment during the campaign?

SARAH ISGUR FLORES, FORMER FIORINA DEP. CAMPAIGN MANAGER: Well, as Carly said at the time, I think all women understood that comment. It`s not that the "New York Times" is spot on in every example of sexism. It`s that Donald Trump has again and again shown himself to be an authoritarian, a tyrant and a bully who`s corrupt and doesn`t deserve to be in the White House.

Now, those things apply to Hillary Clinton, too. But in the case of Donald Trump, it`s not just this "New York Times" story. It`s a history over decades of his character being shown over time and under pressure where he sexualizes women, bullies everyone, and belittles people who don`t agree with him.

HAYES: Ms. Baumgardner, do you think maybe the best way to respond here is to talk about Donald Trump`s policies on these matters?

BAUMGARDNER: I mean, I think just generally, let`s look at his hiring practices. I mean, he has employed women in a major real estate business, you know, that he has built so incredibly successfully at a time when, you know, women weren`t in these high ranking positions. If anything, as I said previously, he empowers women and they have a seat at the table and he respects their decision in business and on his presidential campaign.

HAYES: I think the thrust here right now, I`ll read from this 1997 "New Yorker" story, which is about a woman that he hired in Mar-a-Lago, a doctor, I asked Trump where she had done her training. I`m not sure, he said, "Baywatch medical school?" does that sound right? I`ll tell you the truth, once I saw Dr. Ginger`s photograph, I didn`t need to look at her resume or anyone else. Are you asking did we hire her because she`d trained at Mount Sinai for 15 years? The answer is no. And I`ll tell you, because by the time she spent 15 years at Mt. Sinai, we don`t want to look at her.

I mean, yes, he hired her but the thrust is every way he evaluates women tends to be primarily based on their looks. I mean, the guy ran a beauty pageant.

BAUMGARDNER: I think the thrust here is that we`re not talking about the election in totally, number one. Mr. Trump has garnered historic support, and that includes women, stay-at-home moms, working, single women, you name it, from all walks of life, and they are excited to vote for him and to elect him as the president.

Secondly, let`s talk about Hillary Clinton and let`s talk about how her husband has treated women. So, why don`t we start pointing that out?

HAYES: Her husband isn`t running for president.

BAUMGARDNER: Well, but they are married and it does reflect on her and she`s been every situation and putting out fires and threatened the women he`s had extra marital affairs with.

HAYES: Sarah, do you think there`s lasting damage on the table here in terms of how women in American perceived the Republican Party through the personage of Donald Trump?

FLORES: Well, I hope that women and all voters can distinguish between Donald Trump and conservatives, because he`s certainly not a conservative. I mean, I`ll tell you what --


HAYES: Hold a second, he`s got the nomination to the Republican Party.


FLORES: Be that as it may, he couldn`t talk about policy because he doesn`t have any. Any time he states a policy, within hours, he`s retracting it, reversing it, or days later having to say that actually, that was just a suggestion. There are no policies in the Trump campaign aside from his Twitter account.

HAYES: What do you think about that, Ms. Baumgardner?

BAUMGARDNER: I`m sorry that your candidate is not still currently in the race. You know, we are engaging in policies and rolling those out as we proceed to run for the presidency and the general election. And we are the nominee.

FLORES: He just took back his tax plan. You rolled out a tax plan and took it back. What policy should we believe him on, even if he does say they`re his policies. Minimum wage, he reversed on that. He`s pro-life stance, he was pro-choice, and he`s pro-life, and he wants to punish women. Now, he`s not sure. Anytime he gives a policy, he has to retract.

BAUMGARDNER: Well, I think that`s highly inaccurate. And, again, you know, Mr. Trump is the nominee. We`ll let that speak for itself.

HAYES: Let me ask you this, are their areas you`re rolling out policy. Are there areas we can expect to see some pronouncements for instance, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, in terms of him supporting some sort of statuary way of addressing the pay gap between men and women? Is that something he`ll be supporting?

BAUMGARDNER: I think it`s pretty premature to talk about any of those specifics at this point, but I will say that, you know, we will continue to campaign hard and we will continue to be out boots on the ground approach where Mr. Trump is having conversation with American voters that they`re having behind their closed doors and he`s winning their votes based on merit.

HAYES: Sarah?

FLORES: I think what she means is they`re going to continue to tweet hard and then when it comes to policies, it`s anyone`s guess.

HAYES: What about -- can I ask you about the abortion issue? Because I talked to Omarosa earlier today, and there has been some confusion, but it is right now the policy that he is anti-abortion and will nominate a justice to the Supreme Court that believes Roe versus Wade was wrongly decided. Is that correct?

BAUMGARDNER: He clarified his position. That was during the Wisconsin primary.

HAYES: Two weeks ago.

BAUMGARDNER: Yes, and he sent out a statement regarding that. So I`m going to refer you to that statement.

HAYES: All right. Healy Baumgardner and Sarah Isgur Flores, thank you both. I really appreciate it.


HAYES: All right. I`m joined now by Joy Reid, host of MSNBC`s "A.M. JOY," which can now be found every Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 to noon. It is a great show, it is great to have you.

JOY REID, MSNBC HOST, "A.M. JOY": Thank you.

HAYES: Well --

REID: That was interesting.

HAYES: Part of the issue here is that here`s a guy who`s got this profile -- there`s a certain kind of persona that he projected and I think that`s what it is how he thinks about women and that`s been pretty consistent.

We should start with that, right? There`s not a lot of inconsistency about how Donald Trump talks about or views women either.

REID: Right. And not one of surprise either. And I think one of the things that has Donald Trump has going for him is the lack of element of surprise, right? No matter how outrageous kind of the new storyline is, because we`ve known who the guy is for a long time, it`s not shocking that these are his views of women.

And so, I think what he`s hoping is that the lack of surprise (AUDIO GAP) goes in the wash.

HAYES: I also feel like it`s important to note something here, which is that this is not partisan on this end, like I`m sure you know, I know Democrats. I know the leftist who are sexist pigs. There are men in this world of every ideological stripe and variety who have terrible attitudes towards the way they treat women. So, we`re not even this is a specific thing I think in this context to the way people think about how he views women in his personal life as opposed to combine with the platform of the Republican Party. The question becomes, a party facing kind of gender gap it is, what does it do to at that?

REID: Yes. And he`s not even aligned with the conservative movement. They hate him, right? The people who dislike him the most are the people - -

HAYES: Right. Sarah making the point.

REID: Right. So he`s not aligned with them. I think it`s the fact that the party is now accepting the idea that it can be led by somebody with this known history. The more we know about it, it just adds to the pressure. The reason that that matters is because the gender gap that Republicans enjoy is very specific, right? So, Democrats typically overwhelmingly women of color.


REID: Barack Obama got 76 percent of American-African women, 76 percent of Latino women, 66 percent of Asian-American women, that`s in the wash. So, we can presume --

HAYES: Right.

REID: -- he does worse with women of color than Mitt Romney did in 2012. Most of the figures is 2012. But typically, Republicans enjoy a gender gap in their favor with typical married women, right?

It was an 11-point gender gap in their favor to George W. Bush that went down to a 7-seven gender gap when Sarah Palin was back on the ballot. So, think about that for a moment. They went back up for Mitt Romney to 14 points.

What does Donald Trump do to the gender gap with white women which Republicans need to have as many white women as possible?

HAYES: That`s exactly right.

REID: Because a 14-point gender gap didn`t help Mitt Romney win.

HAYES: And what I find so fascinating, here`s Trump saying, "just getting nasty with Hillary won`t work", right? And yet, they seem intent out of the gate to focus and Ms. Baumgardner, you know, referencing Bill Clinton, who by the way, like yes, there`s a whole books to be written about Bill Clinton, which have been written. I mean, that`s not some big secret. That`s right.

REID: That`s also known. So, you have -- and he`s not running for president, as you are pointed out to Ms. Baumgardner, he`s not actually on the ballot. But even if you bill that in, that is also known information.

But the problem is anything that tempts particularly unmarried and married white women to cross over and vote to Hillary Clinton, you end up what happened with Sarah Palin. The temptation to vote for Barack Obama was greater with her on the ballot. So, it closed the gender gap to 7 points. What they want to do is maximize that gender gap in their favor and Trump doesn`t do that.

HAYES: And I kept thinking. I honestly think there is a degree to which all this stuff actually does help him with a certain segment of men.

REID: Sure.

HAYES: And I actually think we can see and I`ve been saying this now for few weeks, a huge gender divide open up. I mean, we already see his net favorables among men. He has much higher net favorables among Republican men than Republican women. We can see those, this story, we can see those continue to go in both direction.

REID: But the problem is white voters overall are going to be 69 percent of the electorate. An 11-point gender gap with white women in Mitt Romney`s favor still netted him a 5 million vote deficit with Barack Obama. They do not want anything that tempts more particularly unmarried white women to cross the aisle and vote for Democrat.

HAYES: The key math to keep your eyes on.

Joy Reid, thanks for joining me.

REID: Thank you.

HAYES: Still to come, the incessant rumors about a potential third party candidate to challenge Donald Trump, including the other businessmen turned reality star whose name was floated for the job, ahead.

But first, chaos at the Nevada convention as Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton supporters clash. That video is right after this break, just two minutes away. Do not go anywhere.


HAYES: Today as the Republican Party continues to coalesce around Donald Trump, their presumptive nominee, Democrats remain engage in a bruising, intense and frankly, an increasing brutal primary battle. While Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders spent their weekend campaigning in Kentucky, looking ahead to tomorrow night`s primary, their supporters in Nevada spent Saturday almost literally and in some cases literally duking it out at Nevada`s Democratic state convention, where things at times descended into chaos.

Sanders supporters angry about the report that said Clinton held an edge in delegates loudly demanded a recount and booed Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer while she was speaking on behalf of the former secretary to the convention.



SEN. BARBARA BOXER (D), CALIFORNIA: The future of het country is at stake, that when you boo me, you`re booing Bernie Sanders, go ahead. You`re booing Bernie Sanders.


HAYES: At what point a brawl, about what we aren`t sure, broke out on the floor of the convention.

Now, at the end of the day, Secretary Clinton came out with more delegates than Sanders in terms of who Nevada will send to the convention. That upsets Sanders supporters who came into the convention with a delegate edge from the county conventions it had already met, that despite having lost the original caucus tally of votes to Clinton back in February.

Eventually, after what appeared to be a pretty wild day, security clears the room after the convention went far past it`s supposed end time, perhaps summing up the feeling of many sanders supporters who felt they didn`t get fair shake, someone scrolled "cheating is not winning" on the state Democratic headquarters.

Now, that was Nevada. And today, voters are getting ready to head to the polls tomorrow in both Kentucky and mail in their final votes in Oregon. Hillary Clinton currently holds a pledge delegate lead that is about three times what then Senator Obama held over her at this time at the same point in the campaign in 2008. And yet, Democratic unity that seems to be just around the corner is no where to be found, and the question is, if and when it will arrive.

Joining me now, Charlie Pierce, writer at large from "Esquire." The scene out of Nevada was pretty nasty. They`re -- the state chair has now reported to "The New York Times" that she`s gotten all sorts of threats. Her number was published.

Is this just -- I wanted your historical perspective, Charlie, in terms of this being in the range of par for the course for a contested primary or this being in some different register?

CHARLIE PIERCE, ESQUIRE: Well, I mean, I think that, you know, as with everything, technology accelerates every part of the process, including the emotions. Certainly, it`s nowhere near as bad as the Chicago convention in 1968. I`m not even entirely sure it`s as bad as the stop McGovern movement at the Democratic Convention in 1972 was.

That being said, everything that`s bad that happened we`re all going to see because everyone`s a movie director now. I think there`s certainly a lot to be said for looking at the Nevada process and deciding to do something just a little bit simpler, because I can understand the rules of baccarat easier than what you just explain about how they parcel out the delegates. You give everybody an opportunity to feel cheated.

But I do think that Bernie Sanders is running hard and a very necessary campaign, and that it should not end in a temper tantrum.

HAYES: Yes. I mean, one of the things I keep my eyes are on the favorability ratings among the parties. For all the dishing on the Republican side, I`ll talk to a Republican consultant who is toying with the idea of backing some kind of third party run. I mean, there`s the comparative favorable and unfavorables. They`re not that far apart within their own parties. Clinton, 70 percent favorable, 26 unfavorable among tehir own partisans. Trump in 64 and 31.

What that means to me is ultimately, they`re going to get to -- Trump is going to get to the standard of what you would expect any nominee of the Republican Party. The question is whether over the next two months, we see this increasing fissure in the Republican coalition and whether that comes back together.

PIERCE: Yes, I don`t know if you`re --

HAYES: I`m sorry, Democratic coalition.

PIERCE: Yes, I honestly as baroque and awful as those scenes were out of Nevada, I don`t think the split is that great by and large. I think there will be the possibility that you`ll have trouble maybe in Philadelphia. If the Democrats are very lucky, they will have nothing more than what Ron Paul did in Tampa in 2012, which is to have a lot of people yelling at one point and then everybody comes together. I never underestimate the capability of the Democratic Party to fall apart completely, however.

HAYES: Yes, I can`t get a handle on what it means for this party right now at this point when this -- the person who had been running ahead had been the sort of presumptive candidate all along, Sanders campaign came out of nowhere, it has continued time and time again, (INAUDIBLE) have been counted, to produce huge crowds, deliver big numbers, supporters were incredibly invested. What that adds up in the end rather than just like suck it up, it`s time to vote for Hillary Clinton, that to me is the open question.

PIERCE: Yes, I think you`re right, because it`s very possible he`ll win both primaries tomorrow. I mean, he could win Kentucky and Oregon. And then, what`s the second day story there going into California? Is it still delegate count? OK, probably. But it`s hard to get people to care about delegate count.

HAYES: Yes, and Kentucky obviously, Hillary Clinton has been putting some resources into, spent some time campaigning there, she`s been there with the former Democratic governor. She`s been there with her husband. They seem to really want to win Kentucky in the way they`ve skipped at least West Virginia just a week ago.

PIERCE: Right. You`ll have to also remember on the down side, they went all in for Allison Lundergan Grimes.

HAYES: That`s right.

PERCE: -- during the last midterm cycle and she got crushed. So, I mean, I don`t know how much clout the Clinton swing in Kentucky. So, we`ll see.

HAYES: That`s a great question that we will determine tomorrow.

Charlie Pierce, thanks for joining me. Appreciate it.

PIERCE: Thanks, Chris.

HAYES: Coming up, if you`ve had trouble keeping track of the outrageous story lines coming out of the Trump campaign, we have the solution for you, in a new segment we will debut in just 80 seconds.


HAYES: One of the challenges of following the Donald Trump phenomenon is simply keeping up with all the things he says and does, that for nearly any other candidate, it would be massive, potentially campaign ending stories, for which for Trump are pretty much just another day on the campaign trail. It is legitimately hard to keep up and all too easy to get used to the latest Trump headlines to forget about, say, those lawsuits over Trump University which appears to have possibly been a huge swindle, or that surreal press conference where he decided to pretend against all known evidence for Trump steaks were still a real existing product in the world while we`ve come up with something of a solution.

Behold, our list of Trump`s last ten, our tally of the most recent controversies involving the Donald in chronological order. You`ve got everything from most recently Trump pretending to be his own PR guy, John Miller, the revelations about his racist ex-butler who wants the president to be killed, down to at the bottom, the mean tweet Trump posted a while back insulting the looks of Ted Cruz`s wife. But that gets pushed out of our last ten with today`s new entry.

Let`s go ahead and update the list. Our new number one is that "New York Times" report about Trump`s treatment of women. Now at the bottom is Trump`s comment that, hey, he might use nuclear weapons in Europe. And pretty soon, in fact, any day now, possibly hours from now, the whole possibly nuking Europe thing will get knocked into the news cycle memory hole.

We`re going to keep updating the list of Trump`s last ten and we`ll be posting it on Facebook and Twitter. It marks one small attempt to keep the spotlight on some of Trump`s controversies and to fight the impulse to become numb to each new headline.

Later in the show, resisting the mainstreaming of Donald Trump. Why it is important not to treat this campaign and the Trump antics as the new normal.

Stay with us.



GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), OHIO: I just think running third party doesn`t feel right. I think it`s not constructive. A third party candidacy would be viewed as this kind of a silly thing - I don`t think it`s appropriate. I just don`t think it would be the right thing to do.


HAYES: The trick, for conservatives committed to mounting some kind of independent or third party bid in order to prevent a Donald Trump presidency seems to be finding the right candidate, or I should say, one of the biggest on a long line of tricks the backers need to pull off. Ohio Governor John Kasich, who suspended his own run for the White House earlier this month said in an interview today he would not be running on a third party ticket.

It appears the same can be said for Nebraska Republican Senator Ben Sasse. NBC News asked Sasse earlier tonight about the chatter surrounding his name as a third party challenger, and he said he`s not even interested. Both Kasich and Sasse were mentioned in a Washington Post report on Friday as top recruiting prospects for GOP figures quote "So repulsed by the prospect of Trump as Commander-in-Chief they are desperate to take action."

Also mentioned in that report was Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, who like Trump is a billionaire businessman with a reality show and no real political experience.


MARK CUBAN: I think they looked at me more because possibly I could afford to fund it. But obviously it was an interresting concept to me but there`s no reality to it. It just wouldn`t work.

HAYES: Do you look at American politics and say, "The skills of a business leader make for a strong president?"

CUBAN: Absolutely. You have to be knowledgeable, you have to be prepared, you have to be willing to learn, you have to have a thirst for knowledge. So that skill set, what makes a great businessperson definitely would fit as a president. The question is, is Donald that kind of businessperson?

HAYES: At this late stage, one thing`s for certain. Whoever Republicans might get instead of Donald Trump they`d better do it quickly, because they`re running out of time. Joining me now, Rick Wilson, Republican political consultant. Rick, my sense is that you have been involved in the conversations that are happening such as they are around something, whether it`s third party or independent I want to be clear. It might be one or the other. What are those conversations like?

RICK WILSON, REPUBLICAN POLITICAL CONSULTANT: Well, look, the conversations are in two basic silos. The first is how do you do it logistically, financially, how do you build out a campaign that could do this effectively. And those things are pretty explicable and pretty well set up.

The difficult part, as we`ve always acknowledged, is finding someone who is the right fit, the right character, the right kind of communicator, who is also willing to do this, engage in this very uphill climb, and very tough battle, and that`s been very - no one thought it was going to be easy and it hasn`t been easy. But we`re still talking to folks, and there`s still a lot of people out there, even some that your reporting - have said no haven`t slammed the door as tightly shut as one might think.

HAYES: I want to get your response. Part of the issue here, right, is whether that person is making a calculation about whether they can win or not and I think there`s very good reason to think they would have an extremely hard time. That was the conclusion that Michael Bloomberg concluded when he put a bunch of people together earlier in the cycle to figure it out, and here`s what Reince Priebus had to say on Face the Nation.


REINCE PRIEBUS, CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: This is a suicide mission. It is not right and I think what people should do is take the Paul Ryan approach which is to work with Donald Trump and find out whether or not there`s common ground and whether there can be assurances on the Supreme Court and those sorts of things to make sure that our future is secure down the line as opposed to blowing everything up.


HAYES: That`s sort of the issue here, right? Is what you are discussing essentially some sort of symbolic but to you and the folks around you important statement or is it an attempt to actually win?

WILSON: It`s an attempt to actually save the Republican Party from itself. An attempt to save the conservative movement from Donald Trump. And as much as I like Reince personally, the guy`s got the 1,000-yard stare and he`s blinking out torture every time he says something anymore. He`s gone so far over the line, is ignoring the things about Donald Trump.

Sixty-five percent of the Republicans who`ve cast a vote this year have thrown up their hands and said, "Stop, wait, we don`t want this guy." So this is really a movement right now that recognizes that Donald Trump isn`t just a bad Republican candidate. He`s a terrible existential risk not only to the Party, but the conservative movement.

And the fact of the matter is he has no ideological bearings. All these people that today are - up until today have thought, "Oh, Donald Trump`s going to be my guy on the wall, and China and all these other things," the guy is saying over and over again, "I;m going to be so nuanced you won`t believe it. I`ll be so flexible you won`t believe it."

They`re gonna get betrayed, and once they`re betrayed, and once Donald Trump reveals that he`s not a conservative, they`re gonna say, "Oh my God what have we done?" So it`s not a simple question to find and fund and run this campaign, but it`s an esssential operation to do this to show Republicans they have a place to go other than Donald Trump.

HAYES: Is he a bigger existential threat to the Republican Party if he wins or if he loses?

WILSON: Oh, if he wins he`s the bigger threat, actually, because he`s a statist, and an authoritarian, and he`s a guy who will take all of the things that you hated about Barrack Obama if you`re a conservative, his willfulness, his impulsiveness, his desire to use all the power of the Executive Office and ignore the judicial and legislative branches, and he`ll just do that on the right.

I`m sorry - if you`re a principled conservative you don`t believe that the power of the state should be suborned in that way by either a liberal or a statist.

HAYES: So who are you going to vote for?

WILSON: Look, I`m not voting for Hillary Clinton as I`ve said over and over again for months on end. At this point, I will hopefully have a good third party conservative option to vote for. If not I`ll be looking at other third party options who are more libertarian leaning, in my case at least. And pending that I vote for Chthulu or the Sweet Meteor of Death. This is not a choice where I will pick Donald Trump no matter how the inducements look.

And the other thing that I think Reince gets wrong is he`s promising these things that he`s gonna do and he`s never held to a single promise, ever.

HAYES: Bill Kristol was also involved. He`s .


But Bill Kristol`s also been involved in these talks, was called a "renegade Jew" by David Horowitz, who`s a Trump supporter. If you see Mr. Kristol, we suggested on the 4:00 P.M. Show that he should run himself if he can`t find anyone else. So just pass that along to him.

WILSON: I`ll let him know what (Der Sturmer`s) coverage looks like.

HAYES: Thanks Rick. Thanks for joining us. Coming up, another highly anticipated case goes before the four-four Supreme Court, this time a surprising and unusual decision. I`ll explain what it is just ahead.



(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Frankly he gets called by everybody. He gets called by a lot of people.


DONALD TRUMP, CANDIDATE FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No, I don`t think it - I don`t know anything about it. You tell me about it for the first time and it doesn`t sound like my voice at all.

HAYES: After the days long brouhaha over whether or not Donald Trump did in fact pose, in 1991, as his own imaginary P.R. guy John Miller in order to brag about his romantic exploits, Trump`s former top advisor rather offhandedly admitted it in a radio interview.

ROBERT STONE, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN ADVISOR: They focus on whether or not Donald Trump may or may not have posed as a - not a journalist but a public relations man - in order to get his spin and his side of the story. This is ridiculous. James Madison, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton - they all wrote under pseudonyms. They all had things they wanted to say and they wrote under pseudonyms.

Trump wanted to get his spin on a story so he handled the press call himself. Probably because he didn`t want to pay a public relations expert.

HAYES: Not important in comparison to the Founding Fathers aside, nice to see Roger Stone acknowledging what appears to be the obvious, that John Miller is in fact Donald Trump. This was a subject strenuously deflected by Trump campaign senior advisor Barry Bennett last Friday on this very program, when he also tried to argue that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton had the same positive and negative ratings among voters.

BARRY BENNETT, SENIOR ADVISOR, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: He and Hillary have the same positives and negatives.

HAYES: They do not.

BENNETT: Whoa, whoa, whoa. You can`t argue mathematics. Go back and look at the last five polls, it`s exactly the truth.

HAYES: We checked. We looked at those polls. What we found, in one minute.


HAYES: So, we looked at the last five polls that senior advisor Barry Bennett, and you will find that Trump and Clinton have the same negatives and postiives. In other words, their favorable and unfavorable ratings are the same.

Well, here are the last five polls, as listed by Real Clear Politics, which asked people whether they had a favorable or unfavorable opinion of Clinton and Trump. Publicy Policy Polling, Trump`s favorable rating is lower than Clinton, his unfavorable rating higher than Clinton. The Economist, You Vote Poll same kind of thing - Trump`s favorables less than, his unfavorables more than Clinton. CNN ORC Poll, similar result. Trump`s favorability still lower than Clinton, his unfavorability higher. Investor`s Business Daily Poll - same pattern holds. Suffolk University/USA Today Poll, ditto.

The point is that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton`s favorable and unfavorable numbers, though far from rosy for either candidate, are not the same. Trump`s are worse, contrary to his senior advisor`s claim. And that, to use Barry Bennett`s word choice, is mathematics. It is exactly the truth.


Today the Supreme Court took a highly unusual step. It basically said, unanimously, "We`re not going to rule on this and we think you guys can just work it out." "It" is a case involving the Affordable Care Act`s contraceptive mandate, and joining me now to explain that today is MSNBC reporter (inaudible). All right. What was the issue before the Court?

(FEMALE REPORTER): OK. The Affordable Care Act had a list of minimum coverate requirements. One of those, for preventative care. One of htose is birth control. You`re supposed to cover it with no copay. Now a bunch of different religious objections arose when those regulations came down. Churches totally opted out. No one gets coverage.

For non-profit organizations like churches, seminaries, hospitals, charities and so on, they got a workaround. They said, "You don`t have to pay for it. The insurer will provide it directly."

That`s when everything got really, really complicated. Now the Obama Administration has said, "We`ve accommodated your religious liberty, this is a balance." Two years ago in Hobby Lobby when for-profit corporations wanted to opt out, they said, "Wait." The Supreme Court said, "Look at this great accommodation that the non-profits got."

Now here we are two years later, and Anthony Kennedy says, "Ah. I can`t decide."

HAYES: So basically, the accommodation says, "OK. So this is Little Sisters of the Poor and other groups, Catholic hospitals, Catholic universities, charities, these aren`t actual churches, they`re religiously affiliated non-profits, and the federal government says, "We have to sign this form in order to get this religious conscience accommodation" .

(FEMALE REPORTER): They don`t have to pay for it at all and the insurer covers it directly, and to that they object. They say that it`s still triggers contraceptive coverage to which they object.

HAYES: But the signing of it - and basically what happened today was the Court, with four members on each side, reading between the lines sort of said, "We can`t decide this, we`re tied."

(FEMALE REPORTER): Right. So all of the appeals courts but one have said, "No, you have no argument - a religious objector, let`s say when they object to going into the Army, they can`t say no someone else can go in my place." That`s what all but one court below said, the courts of appeals. The Supreme Court said, "Go back," - first they asked for another round of briefing which was extremely unusual, then they said, "Actually we can`t figure it out right now. You should come up with a compromise, birth control and women`s access to health care is important, religious liberty is important. You figure it out."

Now a way to read between the lines is to say in fact that without a ninth justice they were totally at a deadlock and so everything will depend on when this case comes back from the courts of appeals and the ninth justice will be the tiebreaker.

HAYES: Four-four, a bunch of big cases coming down the road, and Mary Carlin sitting there without a hearing yet. A reminder of what the stakes are just after battle (inaudible). Thank you very much.


HAYES: Silicon - how Donald Trump so far is surviving the litany of controversies that would traditionally end a campaign, that`s right after this break.



MITT ROMNEY, BUSINESSMAN AND FORMER REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a number of women`s groups and said can you help us find folks, and they brought us whole binders full of women.


HAYES: Remember that? Remember Mitt Romney and "binders full of women?" The October 2012 comment was discussed at the time as being hugely damaging to his campaign. Four words that alienated women voters, as the Guardian put it at the time.

Well now imagine that Donald Trump referenced "binders full of women." Would anyone even notice? Trump has given us a procession of controversies that have been so over the top, so unlike anything we`ve seen before. The old rules seem to be dead. These days the presumptive GOP candidates say retweeting a white supremacist isn`t even that big a story. He`s done that three times, by the way.

There`s a big danger in all that, the pressure to treat Trump`s behavior as normal, as well as within the political mainstream, has grown significantly during his political ascent. Indeed, it`s come to the point where you can make the case that people just don`t care what he says or does. The precise argument put forth yesterday by RNC Chair Reince Priebus.


REINCE PRIEBUS, CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: I think that all these stories that come out and they come out every couple of weeks - people just don`t care. These individual things that we`re going to be talking about and reading about - I just don`t think they`re gonna hit him. I think they`re going to bounce off of him.


HAYES: Joining me now is McKay Coppins, senior political writer at Buzzfeed News and Bob Garfield, cohost of WNYC radio show On the Media. Bob it`s great to have you here, McKay it`s great to have you back. You did a piece this week about the danger of normalizing Trump. What`s the thrust of the argument?

MCKAY COPPINS, SENIOR POLITICAL WRITER, BUZZFEED NEWS: The thrust is simple. With every story that treats him as an ordinary presumptive standard bearer and talks about his vice-presidential picks and his and his tax policy and whatever - normalizes him. It aids and abets his goal to be elevated, and this is a man whom we dare not elevate. I mean I hate the idea .

HAYES: Who`s the press?

COPPINS: It`s time for the press to make a decision. This is a historic moment. The democracy is at stake.

HAYES: OK, and I liked your piece a lot. But let me say this. Part of it`s structural, right? Part of the normalization that`s happening here is the guy`s gonna be the nominee ...

(COPPINS): Voters have normalized him .

HAYES: Wait, when you say like we`re talking about his V.P. Person like we can`t pretend we live in an alternate universe in which he is the presumptive nominee, like that`s a thing that`s gonna happen. We`re going to report on it.

COPPINS: We don`t have to pretend we`re in an alternate universe, we just have to pay attention to the most important part of the universe. The press, by its nature - the news is what`s new, right? So we have as a default what happens today, and with Trump creating constant petty controversies, and not so petty ones, it`s easy to be distracted by whatever it is that he says today or by whatever it is that the mandarins say is important.

But what is important about Trump is not what he said today. We shouldn`t cover him like the weather. We should cover him like the Iran hostage crisis, and they were abducted four hundred fifty-some days and we covered it the same every single day. Because the issue is the things that have come out of his mouth. His contempt for the Constitution, his unbelievable ignorance of foreign and domestic policy, his misogyny, his racism, his - you name it. We`re going to have a president who is emotionally arrested at the age of nine and he`s gonna have his finger on the button.

GARFIELD: I think that one of the structural issues, there are actually two here. You cover a campaign, there are campaign political reporters covering the candidates and there`s a tremendous pressure to find false equivalencies. To say, "Sure Donald Trump does this, but Hillary Clinton does this." Right? There`s that pressure there.

Then there`s the other side of campaign coverage every day which is from commentators and pundits and I think bringing up that "binders full of women" thing at the beginning of this segment was important because there was a tremendous outpouring of outrage after that. And look, there was a lot of debate at the time. I remember conservatives saying, "This is ridiculous. How trumped up this is."

But the problem is when you find that level of outrage every single campaign, it`s hard for commentators to go any further. What`s the new level of outrage to take on Trump when he`s got way, way further.

HAYES: This gets to something that is a real challenge, which is the fact the guy has no public record as a public official. And I think we tend to gloss over that and say, "Well he came from outside." But the fact is whether it`s Mitt Romney or whether it`s Ted Cruz, there are things that are carved in stone. Votes they`ve taken. Budgets they`ve passed. Bills they`ve advocated for or vetoed. None of that pertains here, and it is truly a unique situation to begin with - you talk about what he says - that`s all there is. On mattters of public interest, all there are are things he said.

COPPINS: In the last four months, he has said and done so many things that are disqualifying - not just to be the Republican candidate for the presidency - the man is quintessentially against the American way about immigrants, about the First Amendment, about xenophobia - it`s a horrorshow and I don`t think that the story is the push and pull between him and Hillary. The story is that he could potentially be president of the United States.

(Forget) the campaign. The story is to focus on this man. He is a disaster in the making.

HAYES: So even if I substantively agree with you, you are .


I think people know where I`m coming from with him, more than the normal sort of anchoring medium is. The point is that`s still a judgment that the New York Times is never going to make. I mean they`re just not going to make - structurally they can`t make it. They`re just not going to say to the American people - they could say it on the editorial page but - structurally, they have to say, "This guy is the candidate."

GARFIELD: One of the benefits of working at Buzzfeed which is that we`ve been writing our ethical standards and guides over the last few years instead of over the last hundred years, and we - our editor has come out and said we need to call out Donald Trump as a liar and a xenophobe. That`s not something that is natural to the Washington Post and the New York Times.

COPPINS: The time has come for the press to take a stand and if not now, I don`t know when.

HAYES: McKay Coppins and Bob Garfield, I will spare you my best on-the- media intro humming while I did while you were getting miked up. It was pretty good.

Thank you for coming here. That is All In for this evening. Tomorrow night, MSNBC`s Primary coverage starts at 5:00 P.M. Eastern, goes through the evening. I`ll be hosting the midnight show.

So make sure you stay up for that.

In the mean time, you can catch The Rachel Maddow Show, starting right now.