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All In with Chris Hayes, Transcript 8/25/2016

Guests: Betsy Woodruff, Jack Hunter, Cornell Belcher, McKay Coppins, Julia Ioffe

Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: August 25, 2016 Guest: Betsy Woodruff, Jack Hunter, Cornell Belcher, McKay Coppins, Julia Ioffe


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

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: The paranoid fringe now calls itself alt-right, but the hate burns just as bright.

HAYES: The alt-right speech.

CLINTON: And now, Trump is trying to rebrand himself as well. But don`t be fooled.

HAYES: Hillary Clinton`s methodical case that Donald Trump is mainstreaming hate and racism.

CLINTON: Through it all, he`s continued pushing discredited conspiracy theories with racist undertones.

HAYES: Tonight, the Democratic nominee`s unprecedented warning to America and the Republican response.

Then --

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Can we be -- and you`ll ask the audience.

HAYES: The man whose harsh position on immigration got him the position --

TRUMP: We have at least 11 million people in this country that came in illegally. They will go out.

HAYES: -- is now taking crowd suggestions for what he should do about deportation.

TRUMP: Number one, we`ll say throw out. Number two, we work with them. Ready?

HAYES: Tonight, the absolute Republican chaos over Donald Trump`s immigration mess.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Who knew that it would be Donald Trump to come off and convert the GOP base.

HAYES: And what happens if Trump doesn`t build the wall?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`re going to come after him, personally.

HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.


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

On a day when all eyes were on Hillary Clinton and her much anticipated speech about the racist elements of Trump coalition, Donald Trump tried to get out ahead with a kind of prebuttal speech which was foreshadowed last night with these words.


TRUMP: Hillary Clinton is a bigot who sees people of color only as votes. Not as human beings worthy of a better future.


HAYES: For days now, Trump has been appearing before overwhelmingly white audiences and pitching African American outreach.

And today, in anticipation of Hillary Clinton`s remarks, he defended his campaign and his supporters against charges that they are the racists.


TRUMP: The news reports are that Hillary Clinton is going to try to accuse this campaign and all of you and the millions of decent Americans at record levels. There has never been anything like this. This is a movement we have and going to accuse decent Americans, who support this campaign, your campaign, of being racists, which we`re not.

When Democratic policies fail, they are left with only this one tired argument. You`re racist, you`re racist, you`re racist. They keep saying it. You`re racist.

She lies. And she smears. And she paints decent Americans, you, as racists.

The people of this country, who want their laws enforced and respected -- respected by all -- and who want their borders secured, are not racists. To Hillary Clinton and her donors, and advisers, pushing her to spread smears and her lies about decent people, I have three words. I want you to remember these three words: Shame on you.


TRUMP: Less than an hour later in Reno, Nevada, Hillary Clinton delivered a calm, almost prosecutorial argument against Trump`s past and present utterances, his business practices, and his association. She highlighted his embrace of birtherism, his comments about Mexicans and his position on Muslims.


CLINTON: He`d ban Muslims around the world from entering our country, just because of their religion. Now, think about that for a minute. How would that actually work?

So, people landing in U.S. airports would line up to get their passports stamped, just like they do now. But in Trump`s America, when they step up to the counter, the immigration officer would ask every single person what is your religion? And then what? What if someone says I`m a Christian, but the agent doesn`t believe him? Do they have to prove it? How would they do that?

Under Donald Trump, America would distinguish itself as the only country in the world to impose a religious test at the border. Now, come to think of it, there actually may be one other place that does that, the so-called Islamic State. The territory that ISIS controls.


HAYES: Clinton reserved her greatest condemnation for the people Trump has chosen to associate himself with, and what the associations say about him and his campaign.


CLINTON: It`s also what happens when you listen to the radio host Alex Jones, who claims that 9/11 and the Oklahoma City bombings were inside jobs. He even said -- and this really just is so disgusting. He even said the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre were child actors, and no one was actually killed there.

But Trump doesn`t challenge these lies. He actually went on Jones` show and said, your reputation is amazing, I will not let you down. And the latest shake-up was designed to, quote, "let Trump be Trump."

So, to do that, he hired Stephen Bannon, the head of a right-wing website called, as the campaign`s CEO. Breitbart embraces ideas on the extremist fringe of the conservative right.

This is not conservatism as we have known it. This is not Republicanism as we have known it. These are racist ideas, race-baiting ideas, and anti- Muslim, anti-immigrant, anti-women, all key tenets making up the emerging racist ideology known as the alt-right. On David Duke`s radio show the other day, the mood was jubilant. "We appear to have taken over the Republican Party," one white supremacist said. Duke laughed. "No, there`s still more work to do," he replied.


HAYES: Hillary Clinton made it clear exactly who Trump is associating with, whatever label they may call themselves.


CLINTON: So, no one should have any illusions about what`s really going on here. The names may have changed. Racists now call themselves racialists. White supremacists call themselves white nationalists. The paranoid fringe now calls itself alt-right, but the hate burns just as bright.


HAYES: Joining me now, McKay Coppins, senior political writer of "BuzzFeed" and author of "The Wilderness", and Cornell Belcher, a former pollster for "The Democratic National Committee, president of Brilliant Corners Research and Strategy.

Cornell, let me start with you. I mean, this was a tactical decision to make this speech. What do you -- how do you understand the decision to make this speech politically, why elevate these elements in the Trump coalition, who is this targeted at?

CORNELL BELCHER, DEMOCRATIC POLLSTER: I don`t often give a lot of praise in politics. But I got to tell you, let`s get in the weeds here of strategy.

This is brilliant by the Clinton campaign. It does two things.

One, today, at a time when Donald Trump is trying to pivot and move away from some -- like last year`s campaign didn`t exist and move away from the racism and the language that he`s been using that`s alienated moderate and middle of the road voters, Hillary Clinton, you were right, she was a prosecutor today. She made him own his racism. She made him tie his racism around his neck and is not allowing him to easily pivot and move away from his racism.

And the second thing that she did was brilliant and also important here is she defined him as a unique transcendent kind of danger to our democracy. And, you know, this is not Republicanism. So, to those moderate, middle of the road and you see it, the college educated Republicans who are pulling back from him, she gave a clarion call to him. This is not Republicanism. This is a unique threat and you cannot allow this.

It was brilliant piece of strategy I think on their part.

HAYES: Yes. McKay, you`re nodding your head in agreement, because I think there`s always been this question, do you see that Donald Trump is the apotheosis of the modern conservative movement and Republicanism, or he is this completely alien force that`s taken it over.

And I think there`s truth to both. I don`t think he`s totally alien force, I should say. But he is definitely something distinct and sui generis, but politically, that seems like that`s part of what this is about.

MCKAY COPPINS, BUZZFEED: I think that is the master stroke of this strategy and the strategy we`ve seen Democrats, the pitch they`ve been making since the convention. It reminds me of 1964, what LBJ did with Goldwater, which he basically said, he ran that famous ad, the confession of Republican, or this moderate was saying, Goldwater, you know, I`ve always been a Republican, this guy just seems different somehow.

HAYES: Dangerous.

COPPINS: Yes, he`s radically scary.

And that is exactly the pitch that the Clintons are now making. The Republicans in that speech, she actually -- she praised John McCain for calling out some of the more radical right-wingers and what they had been saying about Obama. Praised George W. Bush for going to a mosque after 9/11 and saying that Muslims loved America.

She was making a pitch to all the suburban Republican voters who just can`t associate themselves with Donald Trump.

HAYES: Also, McKay, there was a moment where she`s just reading out Breitbart headlines. And these are unbelievably offensive, because they are meant to be.


HAYES: I just had this moment, where it`s like, right, exactly. The reason in a normal political world, the head of Breitbart doesn`t get hired for a political campaign is precisely because you now own every headline written on the website as part of your campaign.

COPPINS: Absolutely. There was this idea that Breitbart could operate outside of normal partisan politics. And they`re trolling. Now, Donald Trump has to answer for every single one, and that`s continuing. Every story that Breitbart runs, people are now -- reporters are e-mailing the Trump campaign, calling the Trump campaign, saying, do you have comment? Does your campaign CEO agree with this latest insane attack that they`ve made?

HAYES: Cornell, what do you think about this? The other side of this, which has been this, I`m not racist and they`re calling -- I think they`re calling all of you racist, the sort of prebuttal speech that Trump has been using to kind of deal with this. And then the -- I know you are, but what am I, you`re a bigot response?

BELCHER: Well, I think, you know, it`s good strategy on their part. I don`t think it`s going to be successful. But what you with want to do is muddy the waters, right? So that I`m a racist, she`s a racist, we`re all racist, let`s muddy the water and we can move on, right?

But I think what the Clinton campaign did today was in a really prosecutor kind of way, lay out the case and put meat on the bones of his racism for all those Americans in a unique way. Again, to make the Trump campaign own the Breitbart stuff is brilliant on their part, but it was also a big mistake on the Trump campaign`s part to bring in this sort of extremism at the same time they were trying to pivot and say, we`re not racists.

HAYES: Well, that`s what`s so bizarre, right, because the dual hire of Kellyanne Conway and Bannon, he`s going out, he`s softening on immigration, he`s doing outreach and then it`s like, oh, the guy who says, like hoists the Confederate flag proud, including an article that directly addresses Barack Obama and says, what were your relatives doing? I don`t think Kenya had a dog in this fight.


HAYES: I`m quoting from memory essentially.

But there`s also this question of, are you essentially elevating -- here`s what I`m reminded of. 2009, right after the inauguration, Rush Limbaugh said, "I hope the president of the United States failed." And the White House took the opportunity to elevate Limbaugh and go at him. Robert Gibbs day after day at that podium, he`s essentially the face of the opposition.

And it was effective tactically, but, of course, you`re also elevating someone that --

COPPINS: I think there`s a real concern there. I think, though, realistically, this was probably a great day for Breitbart and a great day for Hillary Clinton and a terrible day for Donald Trump.

So maybe this helps Clinton win the election. The question is, really, we`re talking about the battle for the right-wing of the party, right? Is the right-wing about tea party conservatism, small government conservatism, or is it racism and nativism? I think that elevating the alt-right, you do give the latter camp a little bit more credibility.

HAYES: Here`s Donald Trump in New Hampshire responding to being asked about his support from white supremacists.


REPORTER: She`s saying you`re bringing a hate movement mainstream. Do you want white supremacists to vote for you?

TRUMP: No, I don`t at all, not at all. I will tell you. This is not about hate. It`s about love.


HAYES: It`s about love, Cornell, and who the real racist is. That`s point in the campaign, we hit the who`s the real racist debate, and it`s all about the love.

McKay Coppins and Cornell Belcher, thank you both, gentlemen.

BELCHER: Thank you.

COPPINS: Thank you.

HAYES: Still ahead, after building a campaign base on appealing to angry and disenfranchised voters, how is that base reacting to Donald Trump`s possibly changing immigration policy, at least changing language? The frightening warning from one fan.

But first, a deeper look at what exactly is the alt-right that Hillary Clinton described today and I`ll talk to a journalist who became the target of alt-right attacks, after this two-minute break.



CLINTON: Alt-right is short for alternative right. The "Wall Street Journal" describes it as a loose but organized movement, mostly online, that rejects mainstream conservatism, promotes nationalism and views immigration and multiculturalism as threats to white identity. So, the de facto merger between Breitbart and the Trump campaign represents a landmark achievement for this group -- a fringe element that has effectively taken over the Republican Party.


HAYES: If you follow the campaign closely, or you spend a lot of time on Twitter or Reddit, there`s a good chance you`ve encountered alt-right trolls smearing minority groups or sharing sexist memes. Many of them read or write for Breitbart news, whose chairman Steve Bannon is now in charge of the Trump campaign as its CEO. "We are the platform for the alt-right," Bannon proudly told "Mother Jones" of Breitbart last month.

In her speech today, Hillary Clinton read a few a choice headlines that have appeared on the site.


CLINTON: Birth control makes women unattractive and crazy. Would you rather your child had feminism or cancer?

Gabby Giffords, the gun-control movement`s human shield. Hoist it high and proud, the Confederate flag proclaims a glorious heritage.

Just imagine Donald Trump reading that and thinking, this is what I need more of in my campaign.


HAYES: Breitbart`s best known provocateur, the author of some of those headlines, is pretty despicable guy, named Milo Yiannopoulos, who was permanently barred from Twitter in July for instigating a campaign of online abuse against comedian Lesley Jones. Jones, "Saturday Night Live" member who starred in the recent "Ghostbusters" reboot, received a torrent of outrageously racist and repugnant messages on Twitter.

Today, a month later, the Department of Homeland Security announced it`s investigating a hack of her website, where hackers posted personal information, including her passport, as well as explicit photos of her. Clinton sent Jones a signed personal tweet this afternoon, "Lesdoggg, no one deserves this, least of all someone who brings us so much joy. I`m with you, H."

Alt-right Twitter has also I targeted Jewish journalists for harassment, especially those covering the Trump campaign. After writing a profile for Melania for "GQ", which Trump later claimed contained numerous inaccuracies, the reporter Julia Ioffe was inundated with threatening anti- Semitic messages, many of them invoking the Holocaust, ultimately prompting her to file a police report.

Joining me now, NBC News political reporter, Benjy Sarlin, who`s covered this movement, Julia Ioffe now contributing writer at "Politico" magazine.

Julia, we got to start, because you`re the episode that you encountered was mentioned by Secretary Clinton. Take a listen.


CLINTON: When Trump was asked about anti-Semitic slurs and death threats coming from his supporters, he refused to condemn them.


HAYES: Julia, I think the key part here is, we are talking about people that run a range of views that are generally white supremacist or Nazi in inclination, anti-Semitic explicitly. But there`s this pack hoard, trolling enterprise that they can engage in online, that if you live a lot of your time online, as you do, can be just -- it`s massively disturbing. It`s not like some thing remotely some people are writing. They`re actually coming after you.

JULIA IOFFE, POLITICO MAGAZINE: Well, it -- in my case, and I think as was the case of a lot of journalists, not just Jewish ones, is, you know, you get one tweet, then you get five tweets. There`s like a geometric element to it, where they just multiply and, you know, you turn away from your Twitter feed and a moment later there`s a hundred more of them, and a thousand of them. You just have to walk away or it takes over your whole life.

In my case, it also crossed over into reality where I was getting, somebody had posted my phone number online, so I was getting threatening phone calls. People saying I had ordered a coffin or a homicide clean-up to my apartment.

So, at that point, it kind of crossed into the realm of the more real, than just maybe somebody sitting in their mother`s basement, as the meme goes, and pounding out these tweets at me.

HAYES: I want to play this, because one of the questions today is the guilt by association. Obviously, Steve Bannon actually works for the campaign. Donald Trump himself has retweeted the account "white genocide" on numerous occasions. But here`s Trump asking about what happened to you.

Take a listen.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Some of your supporters have viciously attacked this woman, Julia Ioffe, with anti-Semitic attacks, death threats. These people get so angry. What`s your message to these people when something like that happens?

TRUMP: I haven`t read the article, but I heard it was very inaccurate. They shouldn`t be doing that with wives. I mean, they shouldn`t be doing that. Melania is a top model. They sent pictures around to Utah and it wasn`t even --

BLITZER: But I`m talking about the death threats that have followed --

TRUMP: Oh, I don`t know about that. I don`t know anything about that. You mean fans of mine?

BLITZER: Supposed fans of yours, posting these --

TRUMP: I know nothing about it. You`ll have to talk to them about it.

BLITZER: But your message to the fans is?

TRUMP: I don`t have a message to the fans.


HAYES: Benjy, this to me is key, is that from the beginning, there has been this cluster of people with very, very frankly vile and fringe views that Donald Trump has quite knowingly played essentially footsie with.

BENJY SARLIN, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Exactly, and this is where he really has separated himself.

You know, these elements have existed for a long time. As Hillary Clinton alluded to in her speech, they have different names, different manifestations, but there has always been a white nationalist front. And one of their biggest tactics was to show up at mainstream conservative settings and basically dare people to get rid of them.

So, it`s CPAC for example, sometimes, some of these same people would show up and infiltrate and then eventually, they wind up and leaders would denounce them. Trump`s thing is that he doesn`t denounce anyone who supports him almost ever, with rare occasions when he`s really pushed into it, like with David Duke and the KKK and even then he was sort of waffling.

HAYES: It took him a long time.

SARLIN: Right. So, you end up with this situation, where whether it`s because he really wants the support of these people or agrees with them -- I mean, obviously there`s elements of his campaign that hook up with things they look. He doesn`t like saying "no" to anyone who`s saying nice things about him, ever. And you just end up blindly retweeting things from white genocide or white supremacist memes with hoax statistics accusing blacks of murdering whites at astronomical rates.

HAYES: Yes, and, Julia, this -- I mean, the other thing that`s key here, one of the really disturbing elements, having covered American politics for a decade or around there, you know, I have never encountered just sort of outright Nazis much in covering American politics until this campaign, until dealing with this corner of the alt-right online Trump world, where people have Hitler mustaches and talk about ovens.

I mean, like the most vile views in the world, suddenly are just not that many degrees of separation from the nominee of the party.

IOFFE: Well, and you have a situation. I found myself listening to Secretary Clinton`s speech and thinking, this is where we`ve come to, that the alt-right, these people who, I think for a long time, a lot of us journalists who received these attacks would say, like, oh, whatever. We don`t know who these people are, how many of them they are, just some pathetic loser in his basement tweeting at me, who cares.

But we`ve gotten to a point where the Democratic presidential nominee has a whole speech addressed to them. I mean, talk about going mainstream. That`s about as mainstream as it gets.

HAYES: Do you think -- I asked McKay this question. It is probably a good day for Breitbart. I`ve said --

SARLIN: It`s an awesome day.

IOFFE: And for white genocide TM.

SARLIN: Every single one of these people individually are celebrating. I mean, this is their big break.

HAYES: But here`s the thing, they will not be able to stop themselves from responding. I mean, that`s part of what -- part of what this is.

IOFFE: Why would they stop themselves?

HAYES: Of course. But the point is the degree to which you bait them to come out and talk, is precisely, it seems to me, what the Clinton camp is doing.

SARLIN: Yes, it seems to be a tactical move on both sides. One is that, you know, it`s tough for Trump to renounce any supporters. So if he gets asked about people individually, it puts him in a difficult spot. But the other thing is that these people have been dying for their big spotlight. Suddenly, we have TV producers saying, who can we get from this movement?

HAYES: Is white genocide book, does anyone have the contact info?

SARLIN: Exactly. And someone from the Trump campaign will have to deal with whatever they say on air. It ends up in a very difficult situation.

HAYES: Yes, you also had a great catch day, which I should note, Trump today refusing to renounce his New Hampshire campaign adviser who has called for Hillary Clinton to be shot.

SARLIN: Repeatedly.

HAYES: Repeatedly.

SARLIN: This is a perfect example. He said these remarks in July. They got a ton of coverage.

Trump`s campaign said he doesn`t agree with those remarks, right? He`s investigated by the Secret Service and said them again this month.

Trump was asked today about a New Hampshire reporter and he said, I don`t know about those remarks, I hadn`t heard them, which is implausible. But second of all, he`s a great guy. What a great advice, I`m getting such good advice from veterans. He knows the military like no one else.

And I just add, by the way, this is a little breaking in here, someone from the Trump campaign reached out to me on background, a little upset because our headline says Donald Trump defends adviser who called for executing Hillary. Because he didn`t defend the execution, but I`d say it`s a bit of character defense, if this is your adviser and you`re saying how great he is.

HAYES: Julia Ioffe and Benjy -- Benjy, hang with me -- Julia Ioffe, thank you very much. Appreciate it.

Coming up, Donald Trump`s stance on immigration waivers from one day to the next. But last night, he took an unprecedented step in deciding his position, by literally asking the audience. That unbelievable moment after the break.


HAYES: If there`s a single issue that has defined Donald Trump`s presidential campaign, since he descended that escalator and announced his candidacy last June, it`s been his hard line on immigration.

Yet today, more than 14 months later, and just 75 days before the election, nobody actually knows what is his immigration policy is, including quite remarkably, Donald Trump himself. Throughout the GOP primary process, Trump cast his rivals as advocates of the, quote, "hated amnesty," who lack his strength when it comes to immigration.


TRUMP: The weakest person on this stage by far, on illegal immigration, is Jeb Bush.

He is so weak on illegal immigration, it`s laughable. And everybody knows it.

He`s been very, very weak on immigration. He`s very much into the whole amnesty thing, which for Florida is absolutely no good.

If you talk about weak on immigration, nobody weaker.

Certainly, if you look at Ted Cruz, he was very weak on immigration.

Kasich is a nice guy, but honestly, very weak on illegal immigration. That`s the end of him.


HAYES: OK, now, the big difficult issue at the heart of the immigration conundrum is what to do with the roughly 11 million undocumented human beings, families, living in this country. In the past, Trump has had an answer, it was wildly impractical, massively expensive, and a human rights disaster in the making, but it was an answer and much of the GOP base loved it.


JEB BUSH (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: To deport people, half a million a month, would cost hundreds of billions of dollars, Donald. Hundreds of billions of dollars, it would destroy community life, it would tear families apart.

TRUMP: We will move them out. The great ones will come back. The good ones will come back.

You`re going to have to send people out.

We are a country of laws. Going to have to go out and they`ll come back, but they`re going to have to go out, and hopefully, they get back.

You`re going to have a deportation force and you`re going to do it humanely.

But we either have a country or we don`t have a country. We have at least 11 million people in this country that came in illegally. They will go out. They will come back. Some will come back.


HAYES: Last night, in one of the truly most remarkable moments in politics, including in this crazy long campaign, Trump just turned to the crowd at a FOX News hosted town hall, and just asked them what his position should be on what is supposed to be his signature issue.


TRUMP: Now, can we be -- and I`ll ask the audience. You have somebody who`s terrific, who`s been here --


TRUMP: Right. Long time. Long court proceeding, long everything, OK? In other words, to get them out. Can we go through a process, or do you think they have to get out?

Tell me. I mean, I don`t know, you tell me.

So do we tell these people to get out, number one, or do we work with them and let them stay in some form? So now we have the person, 20 years, been an upstanding person, the family`s great, everyone`s great. Do we throw them out, or do we work with them and try and try and do something.


TRUMP: Number one, we`ll throw out. Number two, we work with them. Ready.

Number one?

Number two?


HAYES: Now, shortly after that, Trump did seem to take a position and then, well, all hell broke loose. Trump`s stunning immigration mess and why it meant a very bad day for Ann Coulter, with some cannot miss tape you do not want to miss up next.


HAYES: Last night, after he asked a town hall audience which his position should be, Donald Trump seemed to be repudiate his hardline on forcibly deporting the 11 million undocumented people living in this country.


TRUMP: They`ll pay back taxes. They have to pay taxes. There`s no amnesty as such. There`s no amnesty.


TRUMP: But we work with them.

Now, OK, but when I look at the rooms and I have this all over. Now, everybody agrees we get the bad ones out, but when I go through and I meet thousands and thousands of people on this subject -- and I`ve had very strong people come up to me, really great, great people come up to me. And they`ve said, Mr. Trump, I love you, but to take a person that`s been out here 15, 20 years and to throw them and the family out, it`s so tough.

I have it all the time. It`s a very, very hard thing.


HAYES: Yeah, it is hard.

Trump`s comments prompted former house majority leader Eric Canter to tweet that he`s pleased to see @realDonaldTrump embrace Jeb Bush`s immigration plan, the very plan Trump had lambasted in the primary. And they came on the very night that conservative bomb thrower and Trump super fan Ann Coulter is holding a party for her new book celebrating Trump, a book which includes this line: "there`s nothing Trump can do that won`t be forgiven, except change his immigration policies."

Coulter soon posted a series of angry tweets suggesting Trump has embraced comprehensive immigration reform.

Rush Limbaugh, for one, found the whole thing hilarious.


RUSH LIMBAUGH, CONSERVATIVE RADIO SHOW HOST: Who knew that it would be Donald Trump to come along and convert the GOP base to supporting amnesty on the same week Ann Coulter`s book comes out? Poor Ann.


HAYES: Back with me, NBC News political reporter Benjy Sarlin, who`s been covering immigration for a very long time.

So, I mean, I guess to take a macro view, right, we should be clear that like there is no policy on the hardest part of immigration policy, the hardest part is what to do with 11 million people, the most contentious, right. And there`s no policy there.

People talking about a flip flop, this or that, it`s just unclear that he`s thought about it.

SARLIN: Yeah, it`s like he`s just working out the entire debate that the party went through over a wrenching process over years in like a few days and then realizing all the limitations of each option. You know, he`s like, well, I just realized that it`s actually quite difficult to deport all these people and some people are upset about it.

Well, what if we tried to let some people stay? And then you hear people getting upset and you know rumblings on this side. Well, what if we did it without citizenship? And then you hear like a little murmur. It`s like, well, maybe if we made them leave first just for a little...

HAYES: All of these, we should note, are policies that have been floated at various times by the other people in his primary field who he destroyed for suggesting them. These are all -- literally, these are all iterations -- now here he is now -- he`s asked in an interview tonight about whether he`s softening on the 11 million. Take a listen.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: On Hannity, you used the word softening. Even last night on Hannity you talked about...

TRUMP: Well, I don`t think it`s a softening. I think it`s...

COOPER: But 11 million people are no longer going to be deported.

TRUMP: I`ve heard people say it`s a hardening actually.


HAYES: It`s a hardening.

SARLIN: Fascinating.

HAYES: I mean, here`s the thing, you can -- he did have a position, which was deport the 11 million. That was his position. That`s no longer the position.

Once you don`t have that position, you do not distinguish yourself anymore from all those other folks who you savaged as being weak. Because, frankly, Mitt Romney ran in 2012 on basically make life hard enough and they`ll self-deport, which is essentially where he`s going to end up.

SARLIN: Yeah. And I remember some Republicans were really upset about him over that. There was one Republican who ran who said that it was maniacal and crazy and cost them the Latino and Asian vote. And the Republicans never went -- oh, that`s right, it was Donald Trump. He said that right after Mitt Romney lost.

But that`s gets to the point. Building a border wall is something Trump has believed in and talked about a long time, border security is. Legalization is not. He used to be -- it used to sound like he was for it. Then he started talking like it used to sound like he was for it, then he started like he was against it. It`s not like a core issue, even for his supporters, for him.

HAYES: That`s right. And so what he has -- I think where he`s at is, the one non-negotiable thing is the wall and make Mexico pay for it, right? The wall and make Mexico pay for it. And then it`s like, yeah, maybe we`ll just give everyone amnesty too. Like, maybe I can get away with that if the wall is high enough and big enough and scary enough and gets people excited enough about having a country anymore.

SARLIN: Yeah. And it`s really been this way the whole campaign. There`s only about two real core issues to Trump. One is the border wall and border security, two is his skepticism of trade deals and kind of international institutions, this anti-globalist thing. That`s something he`s been talking about for decades. It`s not a new thing.

HAYES: Those are real things and everything else just floats around.

SARLIN: Basically everything else has been negotiable -- you know, taxes he just...

HAYES: Sometimes negotiable...

SARLIN: ...the Muslim ban.

HAYES: Sometimes negotiable with himself. Benjy Sarlin, thanks for sticking around. Appreciate it.

Still to come, is Donald Trump`s softening stance coming at the expense of his most devoted supporters? One eerie warning from a Trump supporter you do not want to miss coming up.

But first, tonight`s Thing One, Thing Two, right after this break.


HAYES: Thing one tonight, North Carolina was once a reliably red state. But now Republicans there are worried, they are facing what could be their worst election year in decades. Among the potentially vulnerable, two-time incumbent Republican Senator Richard Burr. Last time he was up for reelection, he won by 12 points. Now, the latest polling shows him with just a he has a three-point advantage over his Democratic opponent Deborah Ross.

This week, both Ross and Burr released their first television ads of the fall Senate race. Burr`s ad features an African-American pastor Kirby Jones who runs a center in Raleigh that helps kids from low income families.


SEN. RICHARD BURR, (R) NORTH CAROLINA: I`m Richard Burr and I approve this message.

KIRBY JONES, PASTOR: I trust and believe in Richard Burr. Our organization has as its mission to narrow the education gap in math, science, and technology for at-risk and economically disadvantaged children.

Richard has done a great deal to help the children and their families get on a path and a trajectory that leads to academic success and life success. He is genuinely interested in our community, in our children. Thank you, Richard Burr, for helping the families and children of North Carolina.


HAYES: Now, I will say, that is a really effective ad. It`s running in a state whose population is 22 percent African-American, in the year of Trump when Burr is trying to separate himself from them. There`s just one sort of really awkward issue with it. And that`s Thing Two, which I`ll show you in 60 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) HAYES: So, Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina, released a really powerful ad this week, featuring local Pastor Kirby Jones, praising Burr`s support of Jones` work with low income kids in the state. And the ad features these very adorable schoolchildren, looking very studious. And just one problem, the kids are not affiliated with any kind of education program in North Carolina, because they come from here: Getty`s iStock Website.

So, OK, that happens in political ads. But here`s the problem, as Talking Points Memo discovered, two clips of stock footage ni Burr`s ad are featured in his ad are tagged as suitable for stories about Africa. For instance, this image from the Burr ad can be found on i-Stock labeled African teacher and schoolgirls. But it is tagged with key words including Africa, African ethnicity, and non-U.S. location.

While this image, featured in the Burr ad, which struck me at the time as uniforms I hadn`t seen, is called group of children drawing on i-Stock and is tagged with he keywords Africa, South African culture, and non-U.S. location.

That`s Doug McAuliffe, the maker of Richard Burr`s ad, told TPM, the ad company used stock video because it was not able to shoot B-roll with students in Pastor Kirby`s program. According to McAuliffe, he was sensitive about ensuring that Kirby`s group`s tax exempt status was not put in jeopardy by being part of a political ad.

So a good reason to stock video.

Someone just chose or searched very poorly.


HAYES: Donald Trump says he will be giving an immigration policy speech over the next week, amid growing concerns from his supporters about his possible softening approach, although as yet undetermined.

Now, as to what might happen if Trump does change some of his key promises, we got a chilling insight to that, when a self-decribed Trump supporter called into Glenn Beck`s radio show yesterday.


UNIDENITIFIED MALE: Now he`s coming towards the independents and the Democrats. He knows that he can`t...

GLENN BECK, CONSERVATIVE RADIO SHOW HOST: But does he mean it? Wait, wait, wait. Does he mean it, or is he just saying these things like a politician?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s just saying these things at this moment, and I have no problems admitting that, to get elected. Just as long as, as far as I`m concerned, as long as he does the basic things, the foundational things, which is build a wall, he`s not going to have people like me coming after him, because if he doesn`t do what he said....

BECK: So if he doesn`t build a wall, like China, then he`s in trouble? It`s the wall that is your...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, he`s in so much trouble, you don`t even understand, the backlash.

BECK: Oh, I think I do.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People are frustrated and angry and tired of all the political stuff. We`re going to come after him personally, you know what I mean, we`re going to get him.

BECK: I don`t know what you mean.

Hang on, what does that mean? Impeach him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The most peaceful way that you can get rid of a president.

BECK: Is impeach him?


BECK; OK, there`s not violence, When you say coming after him personally?

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: Well, I mean, hey, hey, you yourself said he`s condoned violence in the past, hasn`t he?

BECK: No, I don`t think that it`s good...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not towards him, he hasn`t condoned violence.

BECK: Toward us. Yeah...

UNIDENITIFED MALE: Or towards people at the rallies.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s appealing to people who are very frustrated and angry. Their frustration and anger can only be subsided if he makes his promises true. And he has a lot on his shoulders. Maybe he himself doesn`t even know how much.

If he doesn`t come through for us, he`s going to have bigger problems, bigger problems than what you know.

BECK: OK. Nate.

Well, obviously thank you for one of the spookiest phone calls I think I`ve ever received.


HAYES: By the way, your eyes are not deceiving you, that is a replica version of the Oval Office that Glenn Beck does his show out of.

We`ll look at the repercussions of Donald Trump`s rhetoric and the lasting effect of Trump`s candidacy on the Republican Party, next.



JEB BUSH, FRM. GOVERNOR OF FLORIDA: The tragedy of this, though, is that there isn`t going to be a wall built. And Mexico is not going to pay for it, and there`s not going to be a ban on Muslims. None of that is -- this is all like a alternative universe that he created. The reality is that`s not going to happen, and people are going to be deeply frustrated and the divides will grow in our country, in this extraordinary country, still the greatest country in the face of the earth will continue to stagger instead of soar. And that`s the heartbreaking part of this is I think people are going to really feel betrayed.


HAYES: That was former Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush last month talking about the potential blowback to Trump`s broken promises.

Joining me now, Betsy Woodruff, politics reporter for the Daily Beast. Jack Hunter, who is an editor of Rare Politics.

And Betsy, I think there`s sort of two ways to think about the Trump phenomenon. One is the Goldwater sort of example, right? Goldwater runs, he loses, but he sort of wins by losing. Goldwater takes over the Republican Party.

And the other is the Ross Perot example. I remember back in `92, people thought this was the beginning of a new phenomenon and new enduring and permanent phenomenon in American politics and it proved to be not. It proved to be basically kind of a flukey thing, which of those two do you think is more likely?

BETSY WOODRUFF, DAILY BEAST: I think it`s closer to Goldwater. And the reason for that is that Trump has identified a massive swath of Republican primary voters who have a huge appetite for what he`s selling. He`s shown that there`s a market for this kind of rhetoric and especially for these particular policy proposals.

Although it`s going to be hard to rebottle the Trump magic, he`s demonstrated that candidates can court this sector of the Republican Party and be incredibly electorally successful. The reality is there`s a host of savvy Republican politicians that would be a little more disciplined than Trump, that will run slightly better campaigns than he will and will be able to potentially go further than Trump has.

Jack, what do you think, you`ve had a lot of -- you`re sort of from the kind of libertarian Rand Paul wing of the movement. You have had a lot of tussles with the kind of Breitbart crew. What is your sense of how much they have seized the party, how large they are and the continuity, you know, should Trump lose or win?

JACK HUNTER, EDITOR, RARE POLITICS: I think it`s an overstatement to say that the alt-right, so to speak, has taken over the GOP because Steve Bannon is there. And quite frankly, I don`t think -- you said earlier in the broadcast tonight, Chris, that you`ve never seen an election where people use about swastikas and talk about Nazis. This -- we`re in a different area here.

Being alt-right, identifying as alt-right is something specific and unique and uniquely evil. I think Hillary Clinton today did a big disservice to the country if not humanity by advertising this movement and having people who had never heard of the alt-right, who do have hateful or racist thoughts are now googling it and finding out what this movement is about.

As far as Donald Trump, if he doesn`t become president, I think a lot of this goes away. Populist movements, by their nature, need a figure to rally around.

But did Hillary Clinton just advertised this evil movement today.

HAYES: That sounds a lot like the ignore it and it will go away approach to -- I mean, there are -- the idea, I mean, a, that`s part of the problem.

The other thing is Steve Bannon is on the campaign. Like, he took this guy into his campaign, like that stuff is fair game.

HUNTER: It`s absolutely fair game. But I think there`s a way you could do it to be responsible.

When I watched Hillary Clinton`s speech today, I knew what she was going talk about. I thought it was fair to talk about it to a certain extent. I didn`t want to hear the word alt-right three or four or five times in a row. I didn`t want her to advertise a Twitter handle that people will now go search and that person has more followers. That`s all I`m saying.

HAYES: Yeah. So, Betsy, but -- this is an important distinction. I think Jack is right in terms of the scope of those folks, right. So, when you`re talking about these sort of weird movement to the extent it`s a movement, right -- racists, avowed racists, that is distinct from the broader forces that are shaping what might be something more like an American National Front Party, right? Like the Front Nacional in France, that includes that coalition. And it includes a lot of other people and it has some really gnarly views about race, but it`s a real bloc of people.

WOODRUFF: Without a doubt. And what I find really striking. You know, I was sort of reviewing a lot of the alt-right blogs I reported on in the past today. And one thing that I noticed is how much the alt-rights vocabulary words have now become part of Donald Trump`s campaign.

For example, Paul Ramsay, who is one of the most popular well known alt- right bloggers, made a definition of the alt-right that I think is quite helpful. He said Republicans see the defining political tension as between conservatives and liberals while the alt-right sees the defining political tension as between nationalism and globalism.

Now, Steve Bannon 100 percent buys into the alt-right`s understanding of what the conflict is, and so does Donald Trump.

Donald Trump doesn`t talk about conservatism, he talks about the nation, defending the nation of the United States. We know what he`s talking about. And the fact that he`s using alt-right vocabulary is significant and that`s a lasting change.

HAYES: Jack, quickly, do you worry about what his followers will do if he loses?

HUNTER: Look, we`ve unleashed something ugly here. So who knows.

I mean, I heard that caller to Beck, people sound like that. We`re stoking the flames of something on the left and right, obviously Donald Trump represents this in the biggest way possible.

I don`t know the answer to that question, but it scares the hell out me, to be honest with you.

HAYES: Yeah, Betsy Woodruff and Jack Hunter, thanks for joining us tonight. I appreciate it.

HUNTER: Thank you.

HAYES: That is All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow show starts now.