Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: June 8, 2016 Guest: Karen Finney, Bruce Bartlett, Sarah Isgur Flores, Rick Wilson, Wendy David, Terry O`Neil; Jeff Merkley
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight on ALL IN --
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESUMPTIVE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Don`t let anyone tell you that great things can`t happen in America.
HAYES: History for Hillary, teleprompters for Trump.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESUMPTIVE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: We`re going to take care of our African-American people that have been mistreated for so long.
HAYES: Today, Hillary keeps hitting.
CLINTON: I`m going to continue to make the case he is temperamentally unfit to be commander in chief.
HAYES: As Republicans fears grow.
TRUMP: As to whether or not they endorse me, it`s OK if they don`t, but they have to get over it.
HAYES: Tonight, all the fallout from general election day one.
Plus, my exclusive interview with the Sanders super delegates switching to Clinton. And Wendy Davis and Terry O`Neill on Hillary Clinton`s historic victory.
CLINTON: I`m going to take a moment later tonight and in the days ahead to fully absorb the history we`ve made here.
HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.
HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes.
And today, what was officially day one of the general election race after Hillary Clinton solidified her claim on the Democratic nomination clinching a majority of pledged delegates with big primary wins last night, making history as the first woman ever to become the presumptive nominee of a major U.S. political party.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: Tonight`s victory is not about one person. It belongs to generations of women and men who struggled and sacrificed and made this moment possible. We all owe so much to those who came before, and tonight belongs to all of you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Now, Clinton is wasting no time turning her attention to November. She`s scheduled to campaign next week in Ohio and Pennsylvania, two key battleground states. And tonight, in an interview with NBC News "Nightly News" anchor Lester Holt, Clinton discussed her strategy for taking on Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LESTER HOLT, NBC NIGHTLY NEWS ANCHOR: What did you learn from his primary race as you go forward and face him one-on-one?
CLINTON: Well, I think that there is several lessons from his primary race. Number one, a lot of his primary opponents never took him on over issues because they were somewhat close to what he was saying. They were not ready to embrace comprehensive immigration reform, even those who had in the past. They were, you know, not ready to take him on on the economy and his absurd ideas about what he would do for billionaires while leaving everybody else behind because, you know, they want to cut taxes on the wealthy too.
And you can go down the issues that Trump has been trumpeting and the Republicans really couldn`t figure out how to address those. And when it came to the personal attacks, because they didn`t have any strong issue position to contrast with him, they really couldn`t come back on the personal side either because in so many instances he was insulting them and insulting their families. They got caught up in that because there was no larger -- there was no larger message that they were promoting and I think that in many ways made it possible for him to succeed.
HOLT: You have been on the receiving end already of some of those more personal attacks. Is this going to be the nastiest campaign ever? Will you respond insult-to-insult?
CLINTON: No, absolutely not. He can run a campaign of insults. I`m running a campaign of issues that are going to produce results for the American people. I`m going to talk about why he`s unqualified to be president based on his own words and his deeds, and I`m going to continue to make the case he is temperament alley unfit to be commander in chief.
We need to unify our country. He is determined apparently to continue to divide Americans between and among ourselves and that is not tolerable. Look what he`s done attacking this judge who is overseeing the case against Trump University claiming he cannot be impartial of his Mexican heritage. The man was born in Indiana. He`s as much an American as I am, or as Donald Trump is.
That kind of racist attack has no place in presidential politics and I think you`ve seen a lot of Republicans who just can no longer sit by and tolerate what he`s doing to their party speak out against him.
HOLT: He has of course shown his hands on your issues regarding e-mail. Are you vulnerable there going forward?
CLINTON: No, I`m not. And again, he is saying whatever he chooses regardless of the facts and that`s his prerogative. But we`re going to stay focused on what matters to the American people and I think that`s a winning strategy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Starting today, a super PAC supporting Clinton, Priorities USA, is launching $20 million worth of anti-Trump ads. That is a big buy set to run in seven swing states through the Republican convention, according to "New York Times". One of those ads was posted online earlier this week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, POLITICAL AD)
CHRIS AND LAUREN CLAROS, COLUMBUS, OHIO: I remember being in the ultrasound room and finding out our daughter was going to be born with a disability, spina bifida.
She was born 20 weeks later on Valentine`s Day, and she is a total blessing in our lives. When I saw Donald Trump mock a disabled person, I was just shocked.
TRUMP: You got to see this guy -- I don`t know what I said. I don`t remember.
TV ANCHOR: That reporter he is talking about suffers from a chronic condition that impairs movement of his arms.
CLAROS: The children at grace`s school all know never to mock her and so, for an adult to mock someone with a disability is shocking.
When I saw Donald Trump mock somebody with a disability, it showed me his soul. It showed me his heart, and I didn`t like what I saw.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Those new attacks come at a vulnerable moment for Donald Trump who is trying to reassure Republican leaders after drawing condemnation for his racist attacks on the Mexican American judge overseeing a fraud suit, one of several, against Trump University.
In a victory rally last night, Trump sought to deliver on his promised pivot to more presidential behavior, sounding a conciliatory tune, and using a teleprompter, a device he has repeatedly mocked in the past.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I understand the responsibility of carrying the mantle and I will never, ever let you down. Too much work, too many people, blood, sweat and tears. Never going to let you down. I will make you proud of your party and our movement. And that`s what it is, it`s a movement.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The subdued performance drew high marks from RNC Chairman Reince Priebus who tweeted, "Great victory speech from Donald Trump tonight, exactly the right approach and perfectly delivered."
The Clinton campaign couldn`t tell trolling Trump`s new style, using one of his signature lines against him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TV ANCHOR: Hillary Clinton used public office for the enrichment of the family, that`s something he said he`s going to be talking about.
ROBBY MOOK, CLINTON CAMPAIGN: Well, this is classic Donald Trump. We all know he`s a bully, albeit last night, you know, he was a little muted and low energy as a result of using a teleprompter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, Karen Finney, senior strategic communications advisor to the Clinton campaign.
Two ways to think about this race, Karen, as I think it`s sort of day one properly of this race. This is a race that is going to be fought in between sort of the normal contested battle ground states and the normal kind of between 45 percent, 55 percent, or this race is something different that we haven`t seen that Trump because of who he is and the way he`s behaved is this x-factor.
What is -- what is the belief of this campaign about how much this will be a normal general election?
KAREN FINNEY, HILLARY CLINTON CAMPAIGN: Well, look, I think you heard it directly from Hillary herself. I mean, I think we`re all prepared for this to be not so normal which was part of what I think she was communicating in her speech last Thursday, kind of going through various point, certainly talking on substance about foreign policy and national security.
But, you know, the deep now was just using Trump`s words against him, just using those words in and of itself. So, I think it`s going to be a little bit not so normal but we are still going to find ways to make sure that we are both talking about what Hillary Clinton wants to do in terms of how we are stronger together in this country, and I want to say, Chris, I think one of the things about this race that will be somewhat maybe more normal than usual, the differences could not be more stark.
And I think we`ve seen that certainly over the course of the last week. Obviously, Hillary Clinton has been articulating some of those differences but I think at the end of the day, people are going to see a choice between -- I mean, Hillary is putting forward a positive vision, how we come together and keep doing the work of this country to make sure that we are lifting people up and we keep our country safe versus Donald Trump who is playing into fear and bigotry and that`s a very different vision for America. And as she pointed out last night, that would take us backwards.
And I don`t think anybody in this country certainly I believe a majority of people in this country don`t want to go back. They want to keep our country moving forward.
HAYES: So there was a line last night in the speech where she said and she repeated it today in several of the interviews she conducted including with Lester Holt Donald Trump is temperamentally unfit to commander in chief. It struck me as, that`s essentially the Tweet link version of the case.
I mean, I guess my question to you is, will this campaign be a referendum on the suitability of this man to occupy the highest office?
FINNEY: Well, look, I think there were a couple of things, right? I mean, I think certainly when we`re talking about being the commander-in-chief, your temperament actually really matters and it was sort of funny when she was giving the speech and talking about him drafting tweets, right on queue, he actually was drafting a tweet.
But take, going beyond that, but it`s just -- I mean, it`s funny but it`s serious and, you know, Hillary was really the first person to start to call these points out. I mean, the attitude just showed the couple talking about their child who is disabled, I think part of what the father was talking about is Donald Trump is a fraud. He presents himself as some kind of populist hero and he`s not.
And we also learned that from the Trump University documents that are coming forward. We learned that from some of the practices he`s done where in housing markets sort of, kind of admitting that he was hoping for a crash so he could make money. I mean, that is someone who is in it for himself. I think that`s part of it.
I think the other part of it is that he is both dangerous and divisive. The fact that if you don`t have the temperament, if you don`t have the temperament to have your finger anywhere near the nuclear codes, that is a danger to this country.
HAYES: There`s some reporting suggesting that Elizabeth Warren will make an endorsement of Secretary Clinton in the next week or two. In fact, I believe, the president, I`m just looking at this now, transcripts of his appearance on tonight show that the president told Jimmy Fallon, he`s hoping do it in the next week or two.
How -- what is the message right now to Bernie Sanders supporters over this next sort of crucial period in which your campaign and your candidate clearly hope to unify the party?
FINNEY: Well, look, I think you -- again, you heard it from her yesterday and a bit today and that message is: thank you for all of the work that you have done. We honor that.
We honor the work that Senator Sanders has done to bring certain issues not just into this race but them front and center of this race. I think that`s been a good thing for the party and a good thing for the country in terms of the conversations that we`re having now.
I would say, secondly, we want you to join us. We all need to come together because we cannot let Donald Trump be president. That`s something that Senator Sanders has said he`s committed to and that`s a value we share. And so, we`re going to share those values and work hard to move forward together.
HAYES: All right. Karen Finney, always a pleasure. Thank you.
HAYES: I`m joined now by Bruce Bartlett, a Republican who worked for Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, and Howard Dean, former chairman of the DNC, and an MSNBC political analyst.
Good to have you both.
Bruce, let me start with you. I think you tweeted something yesterday saying, "I wanted to destroy the current Republican Party for years and now Donald Trump is doing it for me." What did you mean by that?
BRUCE BARTLETT, FORMER REAGAN & H.W. BUSH AIDE: Well, I`ve thought for a long time that there was a deep, deep rot inside the Republican party, a cult of stupidity, bigotry, racism, craziness, conspiracy theories, et cetera that had gotten control of the tea party and was really the driving force in the party, and Trump really brought all that to a head. Now, people can see it very much more clearly I think and there`s no getting around it.
And so, I think that now finally it`s like a fever coming to its final pitch and I think it`s just wonderful and I noticed today that Tom Friedman of "The New York Times" was echoing what I have been saying for years, the party must die so that a new sane conservative party in this country can live.
HAYES: When you watch the reaction of the sort of leadership of the Republican Party who have been twisting themselves into pretzels. And they keep hoping, it`s like I`ve watched people in these relationships in other context, whether it`s someone who is in a romantic relationship, someone who`s a very difficult person, if it`s someone who has a loved one who has an addiction problem struggling with, this kind of constant doling out of second and third and fourth and fifth chances hoping for them to change -- I mean, every time Trump does something clears the bar (INAUDIBLE) openly racist, he gets this round of applause and this fingers crossed hope from the whole leadership that it`s going to stick.
HOWARD DEAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: I agree with Bruce. My analysis is the same. I want the Republicans to lose for two reasons. First of all, I think Hillary will be a great president. Secondly, we need a Republican Party that`s functioning.
This party is dependent on race-baiting, gay-baiting, immigrant-baiting, Muslim-baiting for too damn long, and we`ve got to have -- it`s a healthy thing to have two strong parties, a conservative party and a more liberal party. The economics is important. The conservatives -- we want to have them in the debate. They haven`t been in the debate.
We`ve been pursuing these cockamamie odd things and like these voter repression bills and all this stuff. Let`s have a real party that cares about the country.
HAYES: Here`s what --
DEAN: This defeat -- I think they are going to lose and that`s going to cause them to restructure and come back and be stronger and that, in a long run, is good for the country.
HAYES: Republicans would say, hey, look, Paul Ryan, he`s got a vision for the country. He was at an anti-poverty event in Anacostia yesterday where he was rolling -- or two days ago rolling out his agenda.
DEAN: Which he went down to a whole bunch of black limousines and everybody dressed in a coat and tie. I mean, really? You know, it would be helpful if they`d actually listen to some people from Anacostia before they go into their neighborhood.
HAYES: Bruce, what do you say to folks that say, look, there is an agenda, Trump is this sort of anomalous sui generis figure that`s kind of pulled off this hostile takeover and put these Republican leaders in an impossible and untenable position because he`s the nominee of the party and they have to support him?
BARTLETT: Well, they don`t have to support him. There are lots of honorable Republicans out there who don`t. People that have been going along with the party and looking the other way have been enabling those people and now they`re looking in the mirror and they see Trump`s face and they suddenly realize that the lowest common denominator in our country is their party. And I think what they are really afraid of is that he is going to lose so badly, he`s going to drag down the entire ticket, governors will lose, congressmen will lose, senators will lose, because of Trump and there`s nothing they can do about it.
HAYES: There`s one senator, Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois who I think by consensus the most endangered Republican incumbent in the country. He`s in Illinois. He got elected in 2010, he`s going to have to face a presidential electorate in that state, he has unendorsed Trump.
Do you expect to see more of that as this unfolds?
DEAN: Probably not. The problem is that`s not going to help.
DEAN: So I mean --
HAYES: We must hang together or we will hang separately.
DEAN: It almost makes it worse when you do that because the base is mad at you and the Democrats aren`t going to embrace you anyway. So, this is --
HAYES: You think the logic of it -- Bruce said there are honorable people doing it. And we should say Jeff Flake has also said he hasn`t yet gotten --
DEAN: Jeff is doing it for a different reason.
HAYES: He`s not doing it to cover himself.
DEAN: He`s also not up for election. He`s saying what he thinks and you respect that.
HAYES: Yes. But you think the folks, Toomey, and Portman and all these folks, they`re not going to follow the Mark Kirk lead because there`s no upside for them.
DEAN: Well, they may, but it`s a mistake.
HAYES: Politically interesting. Fascinating.
Bruce Bartlett, Howard Dean, thank you, gentlemen, both. Appreciate it.
DEAN: Thank you.
HAYES: Still to come what is the end game for the Bernie Sanders campaign after last night. I`ll talk with a Sanders super delegate who is urging the candidate to step aside.
Plus, we`ll show what the president told Jimmy Fallon on the subject just moments ago. But, first, Republicans are turning on Donald Trump, receiving as I just noted his first un-endorsement. Is there still life in the never Trump movement? We`ll talk about that next.
HAYES: Republican lawmakers have gone from taking a stand against Donald Trump to supporting the businessman as a standard bearer for Republican Party. But Trump`s recent claim that Federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel cannot objectively oversee a legal case involving Trump University because of his Mexican heritage now has some of those same lawmakers betting against his vision of conservatism.
Illinois Senator Mark Kirk, who is up for reelection this fall, rescinded his support for Trump at a statement yesterday. Telling ABC News that Trump is, quote, "Too racist and bigoted for the party of Lincoln for me."
But according to a recent survey, far too many Republicans share that kind of racism. A YouGov poll out today shows that when asked if you think what Donald Trump said about Judge Gonzalo Curiel was racist, 65 percent of Republicans said it was not.
Joining me now, Sarah Isgur Flores, former deputy campaign manager for Carly Fiorina. Rick Wilson, Republican strategist, and political consultant.
I just want to get -- enter in the record here, here`s Paul Ryan who is the most powerful Republican in country, speaker of the House, third in line for the presidency.
Here`s him describing these comments. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Claiming a person can`t do their job because of their race is sort of like the textbook definition of a racist comment. I think that should be absolutely disavowed. It`s absolutely unacceptable.
But do I believe that Hillary Clinton is the answer? No, I do not. I believe that we have more common ground on the policy issues of the day and we have more likelihood of getting our policies enacted with him than we do with her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Rick, when I saw this, I thought to myself here is in a nutshell why Donald Trump won this race, because you`ve got all these GOP leaders saying this is textbook racism, you have Erick Erickson saying it, you have Lindsey Graham saying it, you can`t this about a federal judge, it`s completely immaterial. Sixty-five percent of Republicans are like no, that`s not a racist comment. That is -- that is the gap between the party leadership and the base that has created the Trump phenomenon I think.
RICK WILSON, REPUBLICAN MEDIA STRATEGIST: I think what`s terrifying the party leadership, he`s like the Ike Turner of the Republican Party now. I love, Tina, I had to slap you to teach a lesson.
This is a guy who terrifies these people and Paul Ryan who is a wonderful and brilliant thinker, who I admire tremendously, needs to tear the band aid off and say this guy is unacceptable racist boob, he`s not qualified to be president or our nominee, we`re done.
And Reince Priebus needs to man the hell up and say to Donald Trump, you may have the delegates but you don`t have the moral standing to represent our party in this country and we`re done. It`s going to be tough and these guys are going to take more beatings before the lesson sinks in, but at some point, you can`t just make excuses anymore for this kind of behavior.
HAYES: Sarah --
WILSON: And at some point Trump is going to have to -- Trump is going to have to attack every Republican who walks away from. He`s going to be busy with Republicans who are headed for the tall grass with every single crazy statement he makes.
HAYES: Sarah, to Rick`s point about the idea of some kind of rebellion some sort of no more, this is being reported today, Bob Vander Plaats, supporter and campaign co-chair of former candidate Ted Cruz who you were supporting until he dropped, suggested a convention coup at next month`s possible. Everything has to be on the table.
Do you think there`s any possibility if there were to continue, if he were to behave the way he has over the past week for the next four or five weeks, something like that could happen in Cleveland.
SARAH ISGUR FLORES, FORMER DEPUTY CAMPAIGN MANAGER FOR CARLY FIORINA: I think it would be tough for that to happen in Cleveland. I`ve never seen so many Republicans so grateful for the teleprompter as they were last night. It was the night of the teleprompter. I think that was the real star coming out of that speech. Well done. Teleprompters one and two.
But I really question whether it`s a practical thought that we`re going to change the rules of the convention and kick out Donald Trump as much as I wish it were a realistic possibility I think that`s tough. That being said the last week that Donald Trump has had has sure made that more likely.
HAYES: Well, here`s, Rick, to me what`s been guiding all of this, right, is basically it`s 90 percent just self -- like the incentive of self preservation, right?
Politicians want to stay in power. They want to get reelected.
They are gauging not I think in the terms of like the struggle for the soul of conservatism. Some of them probably are. Mostly, it`s what`s better, right? We stick together or we try to dump him or we distance ourselves.
My question to you is we haven`t had national polls in like a week I feel like. The "Reuters" is the last one. If you start seeing big, big gaps open up between Clinton and Trump, does that change the calculus?
WILSON: You bet it does. And here`s what`s going to happen, Chris, right now, the Hillary Clinton and priority U.S. campaign are in the middle of a $25 million media buy, Donald Trump who is broke, whose campaign is dead broke, and the RNC, which is essentially, broke they`re not up for anything meaningful right now. They bought $1 million of TV this week. That`s it. Hillary Clinton is in the middle of $25 million media buy.
Secondly, the de facto end of the Democratic primary Bernie my putter along for a while, like, you know, like a cranky old man, but it`s over. Democrats will start coming home to Hillary Clinton. She`ll gain two to three points because off of that, they`ll take two to three points off of Trump, and these swing states where there`s big media buy up and running right now.
And you`re going to then see the ability of other Republicans to go wait a second, this guy isn`t 20 feet tall, he`s not going to roll over this whole thing like a steam roller, and that will give them some cover to do the right thing in the venal, shitty -- sorry, political way that they behave in a lot of cases they`ll understand their self interest is protected by getting rid of their association as they can with Donald Trump.
HAYES: Apologize for that language which was --
WILSON: Sorry, guys.
HAYES: It was fine. It was not fine. It was honest though. It was an accurate characterization of the way politicians often behave. But apologies on that.
Sarah, there`s -- that to me the key point here, is that so much of this has been a self referential con about the campaign`s content is the campaign. Like even the fact that Donald Trump came back to Twitter after an absence the other day and tweeted out articles about his polling, like that is what -- if you were to say what is the Donald Trump campaign about, the Donald Trump campaign is about the Donald Trump campaign. I mean, most of his stump speeches for much of the primary was about the polling.
If that starts to suffer in measurable ways, I feel like that`s the thread that makes this a harder thing to maintain.
FLORES: Yes, but remember on the other side you have Hillary Clinton, someone who is proven to be bad at campaigning, a bad candidate. She still hasn`t put Bernie Sanders to bed even though she has. Any other candidate would be done by now and she has the e-mail thing.
The FBI keeps coming out. I mean, I`m a Harvard law grad and a political operative, and I can tell you as an expert, an open FBI investigation is bad for your presidential candidacy.
WILSON: Never a good thing.
FLORES: So, you do have that problem where Trump is bad, Hillary is bad, so which narcissist do you want. The narcissist who tries to hide it or the narcissist who`s open about their narcissism.
HAYES: Well, I think that Trump has displayed characteristics of narcissism far more than Hillary Clinton has.
The open FBI investigation, that is the thing that hangs out there. She addressed today. It will be really curious to see how that plays out.
But here`s the thing -- Trump can`t seem to gather himself for more than two minutes from whining about the multiple lawsuits against his failed university to drive home any kind of message on that.
Sarah Isgur Flores and Rick Wilson, thanks for making time tonight. Appreciate it.
FLORES: Thank you.
WILSON: Thanks, Chris.
HAYES: President Obama just gave Jimmy Fallon a preview of his meeting with Bernie Sanders. We`ll show you what he said on "The Tonight Show" next.
And still ahead, how Hillary Clinton made history. My conversation with Wendy Davis and Terry O`Neill on the first woman to win a major party nomination and what it means.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Next Tuesday, we continue the fight in the last primary in Washington, D.C., and then we take our fight for social, economic, racial and environmental justice to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania!
I am pretty good in math and I know that the fight in front of us is a very, very steep fight but we will continue to fight for every vote and every delegate we can get.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders last night in California vowing to fight on. Just about an hour ago, Sanders campaign plane landed in Burlington, Vermont, arriving back home from California, after yesterday`s primaries.
The only contest remaining in the entire primary fight is in Washington, D.C. next Tuesday. That will be the last votes cast.
Hillary Clinton has won the majority of pledged delegates and has for two days now been the presumptive Democratic nominee for president.
"Politico" reports Sanders seen here greeting supporters makes every major decision in his campaign about being so focused on each primary, he has not turned his attention about how to proceed in the event of a Clinton nomination. Quote, "Top Sanders aides admit that it`s been weeks if not months since they`ve realized he wasn`t going to win. They`ve been operating with a Trump`s-got-no-real-shot safety. They debate whether Sanders role in the fall should be a full vote for Clinton or whether he just should campaign against Trump without signing up for her directly. They haven`t been able to get Sanders focused on any of that."
Someone who`s been one of Sanders` most prominent supporters, Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon, will be here with me next to talk about his views on the path forward.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: I understand what it feels like to put your whole body and soul into a campaign, your staff, your supporters, people are 100 percent invested and when it doesn`t work out I know that feeling. It`s a hard one. And it takes time to really work through it and so we are reaching out through our campaigns to his campaign, we`re going to continue to have conversations.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Presumptive democratic nominee Hillary Clinton tonight discussing the initial steps to work with Bernie Sanders to unify the party. Today, President Obama who is scheduled to meet with Senator Sanders in the White House tomorrow sat down with Jimmy Fallon right here in 30 Rock, The Tonight Show, and gave a preview of how that discussion will go.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIMMY FALLON, TONIGHT SHOW HOST: Is Bernie going to endorse Hillary?
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, I`m sure they`re going to have a conversation.
FALLON: Is he ever going to drop out? Or is he going to stay in?
OBAMA: I`m going to be talking to him tomorrow. He`s going to be coming to the White House. And the main role I`m going to be playing in this process is to remind the American people that this is a serious job. This is not reality TV. I`ve seen the decisions that have to be made and the work that has to be done. And I have a lot of confidence that if the American people are reminded of what`s at stake and all the incredibly important issues that we have to get right that they`re going to make a good choice. That`s what they usually do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And now Congressman Raul Grijalva and Senator Jeff Merkley, both Sanders backers and super delegates, have suggested the time has arrived that Sanders to come to the logical conclusion that Clinton is the nominee.
Joining me now is Senator Jeff Merkley from Oregon who endorsed Bernie Sanders for president.
Senator, have you had a conversation with your colleague in the senate, Bernie Sanders, since last night?
SEN. JEFF MERKLEY, (D) OREGON: No, I haven`t talked to him yet but I`m looking forward to it. I know he`s recuperating in Vermont. He`ll be coming down to meet folks and discuss the issues with them. And clearly he put out some thoughts today that I think are very important, ones that indicate he`s had a serious productive conversation with Hillary Clinton, that he`s looking forward to providing unity at the convention and going forward effectively into November to make sure Donald Trump does not win.
HAYES: Do you think -- what do you want to see? I mean, if you get a chance to sit down with him and you are - if I`m not mistaken his only endorser in the senate.
MERKLEY: That`s correct.
HAYES: And you didn`t do it, I think, for political expediency, you did it because you believed in it, you believe in him. What would you say to him? What do you want to see him do?
MERKLEY: So, his campaign mobilized millions of people because he spoke to some really big issues we`re facing in America. And, for example, he said we need to pivot off fossil fuels quickly to save our planet. We need to create living wage jobs to save middle class families. We need to take on Wall Street to end the practices that have stripped so much wealth from working folks and we need to raise the minimum wage.
He just - he connected on these things and he particularly took on this system in which we have an economy in which national wealth has grown and grown and grown and essentially all the new income for four decades has gone to the top 10 percent of Americans and said this is a system that is not working for working people, and we need to change it. And that has resonated, and to take those values and find the avenue to kind of permanently weave them into the DNA of the Democratic Party, work with...
HAYES: What does that mean?
MERKLEY: Well, that means certainly a discussion and hopefully adoption of some of these concepts of the platform, but more than that it means really the key is for it to be woven into the Secretary Clinton`s campaign for the presidency, that would be just tremendous.
HAYES; Wouldn`t it also be the case -- I mean it strikes me that he could have a fairly -- a more prominent role in the U.S. Senate should Democrats take back a majority particularly that he could have a more prominent role in the United States senate than he has had heretofore in terms of being at the forefront of a kind of a kind of legislative agenda that would embed the very things you`re talking about, the campaign was run on.
MERKLEY: No, absolutely.
I mean, he has campaigned for the presidency not because it was the office, it was because fulfilling the vision of these objectives was best pursued by running for the presidency.
And you`re absolutely right, in the Senate he already carried great weight in the caucus, people pay a lot of attention to him. He brings great information to bear and certainly challenges us, lays forward the vision, but that has simply increased by what he has done.
He has really shifted probably the conversation across America...
HAYES: That`s true. I agree with all of that, but my question to you is, do you trust - I mean, on a personal level, and I`ve known the Senator for a long time, and I`ve interviewed dozens and dozens of times. There`s a Politico piece that paints him as this sort of scowling and bitter man in a bunker. It`s unclear to me how accurate that characterization is.
I mean, do you personally trust that he will come around to throwing himself into the project of getting the Democratic nominee elected?
MERKLEY: Absolutely. He made very clear when I talked to him early when he was thinking about this campaign that he did not want to be a Ralph Nader, he wasn`t going to do something that would empower the Republicans. We know what happened with that. We got George Bush and it was an absolute disaster for our country.
Certainly, there`s - but all sides have to reach out. In other words, it`s important that the ideas he`s put forward that energized millions of Americans, and certainly within the Democratic Party, that those ideas find embodiment in this presidential campaign. f that doesn`t happen, then it`s not going to be easy to say to folks come and join us, we reject your ideas, but come and join us. And so there`s got to be effort on both sides to reach out.
But I think there will be, because there`s many issues that Secretary Clinton shifted on during the campaign because of Bernie`s campaign, ones where she took on -- she finally -- she opposed the Keystone Pipeline, which she didn`t originally. She came and joined us on opposing drilling in the Artic...
HAYES: And TPP, which - TPP is going to be a fascinating fight, particularly if there is a lame duck TPP vote, which is what I predict, personally.
Senator Jeff Merkley, thanks for your time tonight. Appreciate it.
MERKLEY: You`re so welcome.
HAYES: My conversation with Wendy Davis and Terry O`Neil about Clinton`s historic moment still ahead.
But first, how far does an endorsement from the presumptive Republican nominee get you? Well, the one candidate Trump supported had a primary last night. So, I`ll let you guess how that went over this break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Hello. This is Donald Trump and I`m calling to personally ask you to vote for Renee Ellmers on Tuesday, June 7.
Renee was the first congresswoman to endorse me and she really was terrific and boy is she a fighter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Republican representative Renee Ellmers is the first and only member of congress to have been explicitly endorsed by Donald Trump and last night she faced a tough primary in a redrawn North Carolina district that combined hers and another congressman`s district, Republican Congressman George Holding.
Now, we`ve always been fans of Ellmers way back in May of 2013. Ellmers she was one of the first Republican guests on this show and three-and-a- half minutes into our interview, which concerned budget cuts from the so- called sequester, she surprised me with a prop she had apparently been holding since the interview began.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. RENEE ELMERS, (R) NORTH CAROLINA: Now, but the point being that two cents of every federal dollar was cut from our budget. We need to put the spending cuts in place.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That`s not easy to do. You know you hold the pennies down there for three-and-a-half minutes, you bring them up, and they`re perfectly positioned, tip of the cap.
But last night, Ellmers got crushed in her primary election, becoming the first GOP incumbent to lose in a primary this entire year. She`d been lambasted in conservative media as a, quote, Tea Party turncoat.
But before you start feeling too bad for Renee Ellmers, you need to see what she said to a fellow Republican while campaigning yesterday, someone who then deemed Ellmers a, quote, "mean girl on steroids." We`ll bring you the video in just 60 seconds.
HAYES: Yesterday, a few hours before she became the first GOP incumbent to lose a primary this year, despite an endorsement from Donald Trump, Representative Renee Ellmers stopped off to vote. And as she left her car, Ellmers spotted a local Republican official who is backing one of her opponents. And it was at that point that she uttered one of the nastier comments we`ve heard this entire campaign season. CBS affiliate WNCN caught that comment on camera and got a reaction from Ellmer`s target, Maggie Sandrock.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELLMERS: You`re eating too much pork barbecue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What was going through your mind when she said that?
MAGGIE SANDROCK (ph): Typical Renee. She has become a mean girl on steroids in my view.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: You`re eating too much pork barbecue.
WNCN then followed up with Ellmers who didn`t seem to regret accusing Sandrock (ph) of, quote, eating a little too much pork barbecue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELLMERS: Oh, yeah, she`s put on a little weight.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you friends with her.
ELLMERS: Yeah, I know her.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Would she describe you as friends?
SANCROCK (ph): I don`t know.
I would consider her a friend, but certainly not a good one. Good friends don`t tell you you`re fat.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Last night, Hillary Clinton became the first woman in American history to clinch a major party`s nomination. The monumental achievement comes a full 96 years after women first won the official right to vote, though, of course an African-American would have to wait decades to realize that right, and exactly 100 years after the first woman was elected to congress.
Now, after winning four decisive primary victories last night Clinton almost immediately turned her attention to Donald Trump, but not before reveling in the truly historic nature of the night with a campaign video titled simply "History Made."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: Well, let`s learn from the wisdom of every mother and father who teaches their daughters there is no limit on how big she can dream and how much she can achieve.
UNIDENIFIED FEMALE: I`m a little feminist growing up to help all women with equal rights I hope you can be the first woman president of the whole United States.
CLINTON: I want to build an America that respects and embraces the potential of every last one of us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: I`ll talk to Wendy Davis and Terry O`Neil about the significance of this moment next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: It may be hard to see tonight, but we are all standing under a glass ceiling right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now, Terry O`Neil, president of the National Organization for Women, whose PAC has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, and Wendy Davis, former Texas state senator and a Clinton supporter.
And, Terry, let me start with you, how did you feel watching that speech last night and the build up to it?
TERRY O`NEIL, NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN: It was an absolutely thrilling moment. It was a thrilling speech. And you know part of me said, oh, I`m so proud and I`m so proud of all the amazing work that I know that NOW activists, frankly, around the country have been doing to make this happen.
And then part of me was saying why did it take so long? Why didn`t this happen in the 1970s, but it is absolutely amazing.
And I have to tell you I think that Hillary Clinton is exactly the feminist woman that we need to lead us in this country right now. You know, my organization endorses men as well as women who support our issues, but Hillary Clinton is exactly the feminist pro-woman candidate we need right now.
HAYES: Well, Wendy, it`s interesting you say, Terry, because, Wendy, last night it was so clear how much, you know, in that video that we showed there and in Clinton beginning with Seneca Falls, sort of proclamation of sort of the basic quality of women in a civil democracy here in the U.S. that she really very explicitly was placing herself in the lineage of American feminism in a way I don`t quite think she ever did in 2008, or even in this campaign so far.
WENDY DAVIS, FRM. TEXAS STATE SENATOR: I think to some extent that`s true, but she wanted to make sure in this historic moment to pause and to celebrate it. And she was clearly celebrating last night for people like me, and I know so many women and little girls around this country, to watch her in that moment and to feel that we have all been a part of this fight. And the fact that she acknowledged those many, many years of struggle that we`ve had.
We live in a country where only 50 years ago women had to get permission from their husbands to be able to get a credit card. And we`ve seen the steps over time of what`s happened because of women like Hillary Clinton who have been fighting for our rights. We have the Violence Against Women Act now. We have Title IX. We have Roe v Wade.
But we have so much further to go. And for her to acknowledge where we`ve been before we steer our sights on where we`re going, I think was absolutely appropriate. And I just - I loved it.
HAYES: I thought the best moment of the speech in my mind, Terry, last night was when she talked about her mom. She used that - she embedded her announcement of herself as the presumptive nominee in the recollection of her mother. She told about her mother telling her to stand up to bullies. And in some sense, it`s almost like the Republican Party has nominated the equivalent of Bobby Riggs to face the first woman nominee of a major party. I mean, you couldn`t kind of script a more oppositional foil for her to face off against.
O`NEIL: And in some ways that`s absolutely right, Chris. But in many ways he is an extraordinarily dangerous foil.
Donald Trump wants power. He considers himself a hugely powerful man. He wants more power. He intends to win this election. And he comes perilously close to it.
I think that -- and frankly I think that Hillary Clinton is the best candidate that the Democrats can put up against him sright now because she doesn`t stand -- she does stand up to bullies. She knows exactly how do that. Goodness knows that women politicians who put themselves out there, and I think my friend Wendy Davis can attest to this women who stand up and say I`m going to reach for high office they absolutely get bullied. They get subjected to a double standard.
Hillary Clinton is so familiar with that and she knows how to win despite it.
Wendy, you know, it is interesting watching last night and thinking about this sort of -- this quality called authenticity that people seek in politician, which itself is necessarily fabricated. It`s a performance of authenticity and certain people can do it very well and certain people can`t it that well.
I thought it was -- she performed authenticity well last night in the way that a good politician does, but it also struck me that she -- there is to much animus directed at Hillary Clinton. It always seems outsized to me that even if you really dislike her politics or policies, there`s this personal nature to it. What do you make of that?
DAVIS: You know, I think that there`s been a tremendous amount of -- a feeling of being threatened by her for a long, long time. They -- they watched her as first lady, as she marched in to that White House and decided that she was going to be a part of policy making, that she was going to work for passing universal health care. And then throughout her history, both as first lady, as a U.S. Senator, as Secretary of State, she has been forcefully out there fighting chief among many of the issues she`s fought for, making sure that women receive the kind of respect in this country and be full equality in this country and in this world that we deserve.
So, I feel like it`s coming from a place of feeling like this person in office actually is the beginning of the end of this patriarchal system of governance that we`ve had in this place and of course they feel threatened by that.
HAYES: All right, Terry O`Neil and Wendy Davis, thanks for taking time tonight. Appreciate it.
DAVIS: Thank you, Chris.
O`NEIL: Thank you.
HAYES: 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