Show: All in with Chris Hayes Date: February 17, 2017 Guest: Roger Stone, Maxine Waters, Charlie Dent, John Dean, Dorian Warren, Susan Sarandon, Josh Fox
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HARDBALL HOST: -- by the way, if you boot the reason, you said you were running for President. The reason people voted you into the White House, creating good paying jobs for good patriotic Americans. And if you can`t deliver on that, all the king`s horses and all the king`s men will not be able to put Humpty-Dumpty together again. That`s you, by the way, Humpty-Dumpty. That`s HARDBALL for now. Thanks for be with us. "ALL IN" with Chris Hayes starts right now.
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC ALL IN HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Michael Flynn, General Flynn is a wonderful man. I think he`s been treated very, very unfairly by the media.
HAYES: New questions about who in the Trump campaign had contact with Russian Intelligence and when.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I spoke to Paul Manafort last night.
HAYES: Tonight, my exclusive interview with one of the operatives under scrutiny.
Have you spoken to the President since he`s been the President, while he`s in the White House?
Plus, the growing calls for an independent investigation.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If there are contacts between the Trump officials and Russian intelligence officials that amount to collaboration, that is a big deal.
HAYES: And Susan Sarandon comes back on the show for the first time since the election.
Do you feel that you properly appreciated what a Donald Trump Presidency would be?
When ALL IN starts right now.
Good evening from New York, I`m Chris Hayes. And it is only Wednesday. We are now smack in the middle of what has already been by far the worst week yet for the Trump administration. One that brought us first, the resignation of National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, and then, just this afternoon, the withdrawal of Labor Secretary Nominee Andy Puzder, which we`ll discuss shortly. But we begin tonight with revelations that have some raising the specter of Watergate.
New details about alleged contacts during the Presidential campaign between Trump campaign aides and senior Russian intelligence officials. As I said last night on this program, the most potentially explosive allegation against this administration is that it colluded with the Russians in an effort to boost Trump`s chances to become President. It`s a very serious charge and it`s important to note that as of now, there is no direct evidence to substantiate it. At this point, both NBC and the Times reporting has found no evidence of collusion. However, with each new revelation, the questions only get louder.
Last night, shortly after we went off the air, the New York Times, citing four current and former American officials reported that phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Trump`s campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election. Today, CNN also citing multiple officials reported Trump aides wherein, and I`m quoting here, "Constant touch with senior Russian officials during the campaign." Now, shortly after the election, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said there were contacts between the Russians and the Trump team," adding, "Obviously we know most of the people from his entourage." The Trump campaign and now Trump administration has long and strenuously disputed that very claim.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Today can you still say definitively that nobody on the Trump campaign not even General Flynn had any contact with the Russians before the Election.
SEAN SPICER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I don`t have any - there`s nothing that would conclude me that anything different has changed with respect to that time period.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Among those who allegedly spoke to the Russians during the campaign was Flynn, who the White House said yesterday, was asked to resign not because of improper contact with the Russians, but because he had lied about it. Today however, Flynn`s ex-boss found someone else to blame.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: General Flynn is a wonderful man. I think he`s been treated very, very unfairly by the media, as I call it the fake media, in many cases. And I think it`s really a sad thing that he was treated so badly.
HAYES: Of course, that`s the President who fired him, and demanded his resignation. Now, in the orbit of President Trump, there are few people more controversial than one Roger Stone. He is a former Trump Campaign Adviser who we stopped inviting on this very network because of numerous incredibly offensive, bigoted and objectionable tweets. Tonight, however, Stone is once again the middle of the news, because according to the New York Times story, the FBI has examined four people regarding the Trump campaign to Russia ties. Former Trump Adviser Carter Page, former Trump Campaign Manager Paul Manafort, Michael Flynn and, yes, Roger Stone. So today, I sat down for an interview with Stone, a principal in the story, and I started by asking him to characterize his relationship with the President.
ROGER STONE, TRUMP`S FORMER CAMPAIGN ADVISER: Friend. Friend of Trump, FOT. And obviously, a supporter in the most recent Presidential Campaign.
HAYES: Do you - do you - do you call him? Do you have his phone number? Have you been talking since he`d become the President?
STONE: We speak from time to time, but I consider those conversations to be privileged and I`m not prepared to disclose the content. You know, I have great affection for Donald Trump and his family. I`ve been - we`ve been friends for 40 years. I wanted him to run for President in 2012, as early as 2000.
HAYES: And you were - you sort of started in a formal role in the campaign and quickly left the formal role, and became kind of an informal adviser, and had contact with him throughout the campaign.
STONE: That is correct.
HAYES: So, I wanted to talk to you today because your name appears in this New York Times story, and I should be very clear about how it appears. Because you are not named as one of the people about whom Intelligence Officials are saying was caught on bugged calls essentially talking to Senior Russian Intelligence Officials, but as someone who had reportedly been investigated for that before. So I want to ask you directly, if you had contacts with Russian nationals during the campaign.
STONE: Well, first of all, I appreciate you`re having me here today to clear this up. The answer, Chris, is categorically, no. I have had no contacts from Russians or intermediaries for Russians, I have no Russian clients, no Russian communications. In all honesty, I`ve never been informed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that I was under investigation. This is a canard. I write about this extensively in my new book. I told the New York Times this, but it is curious to me that yesterday`s Times story seems to be almost a total recycle of a story that was written on January 20th, the same three names, the same general allegation.
HAYES: You know, it`s interesting you`re categorical on this because Paul Manafort is on the record in that article in a - in a - in a kind of not categorical way. Very sort of tellingly says, "I do not knowingly speak to any Russian intelligence officials." He also said "It`s not like these people wear badges that say I`m a Russian intelligence officer." You`re not saying that. You`re saying something far more categorical. No Russian nationals, no intermediaries with Russian nationals. Nothing, kaput.
STONE: No Russian money, no Russian communications, period. I spoke to Paul Manafort last night. I prefer to look at the more adamant part of his statement. Now, is it possible that he spoke to someone without knowing they were a Russian agent? When you`re the campaign manager for a candidate for President, you speak to a lot of people. But even in that case, he does not believe that is the case.
HAYES: You just mentioned Paul Manafort. Are you - are you friendly with him? Do you - are you in communication with him regularly?
STONE: We were partners for almost 20 years. He was an usher at my wedding. Yes, we are very good friends.
HAYES: And what about the recently fired, resigned General Flynn? Do you have a relationship with him?
STONE: I do not know General Flynn. I am an admirer of General Flynn. Based on what I`ve seen over the last 24 hours, he has broken no laws, but laws were broken by those who disclosed government wire traps or eavesdropping on a U.S. citizen, in this case a government official. As you know, Chris, that`s very, very rare that the government even admits that that happens.
HAYES: It`s interesting you raise that because there`s - and I agree. I mean, it appears to be that that is most likely the case. That there was a legal - there was a law broken in these leaks. I want to talk about the leaks during the campaign, because of course, the nexus of all this, and I think that in some ways the origin of quote "the Russia story" has to do with the WikiLeaks. And it has to do with the fact that it is the conclusion the intelligence agencies, that those leaks emanated from hacks of e-mail accounts by Russian Intelligence. You said during the campaign, you have a back channel to Julian Assange, that you were in regular connect - communication with Assange through an intermediary. Is that right?
STONE: Well, it`s a little overstatement, and what I said was that we had - that there was an intermediary in the sense that we have a common friend who communicated with Assange and communicated with me, and what he told me was that WikiLeaks was in possession of extraordinary information about Hillary Clinton that would rock her campaign and roil the race, and that they would begin releasing this in October. That is the total extent of what I know. No specifics beyond that. And of course, both those things turned out to be true. The intermediary in this case is someone who is in the media, and I`m not going to disclose their name, because I don`t want to cost them their job.
HAYES: You said that that was the sum total of what you knew, but you did have this sort of remarkably prophetic tweet on August 21st. You said "Trust me, it will soon be Podesta`s time in the barrel". This is - you know - we should note that`s a full two months or six weeks before Podesta`s e-mails start being disclosed. Did you know at that point that Podesta had been hacked?
STONE: No, I referred very specifically to a piece based on my own research regarding John Podesta, and money laundering by the Russian mob for the Clinton Foundation, which is posted at my web site Stone Cold Truth. None of that information, by the way is reflected in the subsequent WikiLeaks disclosures.
HAYES: So that was not - that was not a reference to you having advanced knowledge that WikiLeaks had acquired the essentially entirety of the inbox of John Podesta?
STONE: That is correct. I had no knowledge of that. And I learned it when they disclosed it like everyone else.
HAYES: And then this other tweet which was October 2nd, you said, "Wednesday, Hillary Clinton is done." #WikiLeaks. Now, that was a little far in advance of what ended up happening. I believe the disclosures start on October 8th, if I`m not mistaken. Was that because you knew that the documents were about to be released?
STONE: On October 5th, Julian Assange held a press event in which he announced that he would begin disclosures for 10 weeks at the beginning of every week, and of course, the following week on the 8th, those disclosures began. Again, I make reference to what I said previously. I told he had - I was told he had information that was unspecified political dynamite, and that he would begin releasing it in the October. Those things turned out to be true.
HAYES: You are a - you`re a notable fan of Richard Nixon. In fact, you have the man`s face tattooed on your back, if I`m not mistaken. What do you think Richard Nixon would be making of all this?
STONE: Well, he would be very angry about the leaks -
HAYES: He sure would be.
STONE: - particularly, the leaks from his - from his - from his own White House. I mean, if you know that I had been - I`ve written a book on Richard Nixon. He was both very great and very flawed. He achieved many great things for peace and he made egregious mistakes. My admiration of him has to do with his resilience. The tattoo is a daily reminder that in life, when you get knocked down, when things don`t go your way, when you`re defeated, you got to get up and fight again. It`s simply that.
HAYES: And final question here, have you spoken to the President since he`s been the President, while he`s in the White House?
STONE: I have but, again, I`m not prepared to disclose the contents of that conversation.
STONE: All -- honestly, it`s not all that momentous. I called to congratulate him, he was very gracious.
HAYES: All right. Roger Stone, I appreciate your time tonight, Sir. Thank you very much.
STONE: Thank you much for having me, Chris. I appreciate it.
HAYES: Joining me now, Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters of California. And Congresswoman, I thought of you today for this reason. I want to play your reaction January 13th when you were briefed by James Comey in a classified briefing. Members of congress walked out, yourself among them, flabbergasted, frustrated, upset. This was your reaction to that briefing. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Can you tell us anything about the discussion in the briefing?
MAXINE WATERS, UNITED STATES CONGRESSWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA: No, it`s classified, and we can`t tell you anything. All I can tell you is the FBI Director has no credibility. That`s it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: I thought of you because I read the Times story last night, and I thought, "Was that what she was talking about?"
WATERS: Well, let me just say I`ve been talking a lot about President Trump and I`ve been talking about all of his allies. I`ve come to conclude that Trump has the Kremlin clan surrounding him and have been involved with him for a long time, and you named some of them this evening starting with Flynn, of course, who just got caught in a lie because he was on a telephone conversation with the Russian Ambassador, and he did talk about sanctions. And of course, there`s Manafort, who was his Campaign Manager and who certainly had a consultant agreement with the past President of the Ukraine, who was an ally of Putin`s and controlled by Putin. And then, you go on further, and you take a look at Roger Stone.
Roger Stone didn`t tell you in this interview that he did business in Ukraine. And what you have to ask him is, "Oh, were you tied into the former President who is the ally of Putin? Who was controlled by Putin?" And then, of course, there`s Tillerson. Tillerson, who is now the Secretary of State, had a multibillion dollar deal with Putin and the Kremlin to drill in the Arctic, and guess what, it was stopped dead in its tracks because of the sanctions. And so, his major job, in my estimation, is to help get those sanctions lifted from Russia so that they can proceed with this oil deal.
So, whether we`re talking about any of them or Wilbur Ross or Carter Page, these are all people with ties that are documented with Russian and the Kremlin. And so, I have named them Trump`s Kremlin clan, because how is it that all of them with this background and with these connections end up in the same administration? I tell you, there`s more to be learned about it. I believe there`s been collusion; they were involved in his campaign and we`ve got to dig these investigations have got to show the connection and prove that collusion, because as for me, I think it leads to impeachment, and I believe that, and that`s what I`m paying attention to.
HAYES: All right. Congresswoman Maxine Waters, thank you for joining me tonight. I appreciate it.
WATERS: You`re welcome.
HAYES: Still to come, is this turning into a Watergate-level scandal? You just heard the Congresswoman say the word impeachment. With lawmakers already drawing that comparison, I`ll speak with Richard Nixon`s own White House lawyer, stick around for that interview.
Plus, more bipartisan calls for expanded investigations, including top republicans, now suggesting Michael Flynn testify under oath before the Senate. Will democrats get the independent select committee some are calling for? Next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LINDSEY GRAHAM, UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM SOUTH CAROLINA: I`d like to know, did he just do this as a rogue General Flynn? Did he just decided to call the Russians up one day, or did it come from somebody else in the White House?
ROY BLUNT, UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM MISSOURI: The President is better served by Congress looking at this, looking at it quickly as possible, but taking all the time necessary.
JOHN MCCAIN, UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM ARIZONA: Obviously, these allegations which currently are credible, I think, because they`re carried by the most credible media that it needs to be investigated.
BOB CORKER: (INAUDIBLE) coming before us and testifying if that can be done, would be a very appropriate thing for us to have happen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Today, growing cracks in republican unity as more GOP Senators demand investigations of the alleged contact between Trump associates and Russian Intelligence Officials during and after the presidential campaign. Some even calling for ousted National Security Advisor Michael Flynn to testify on Capitol Hill. The Senate Intelligence Committee is already probing Russia`s attempted interference in the Election and any potential ties to Trump world. But according to some Senate Democrats, it will take an independent Select Committee to get the job done. I`m joined by Congressman Charlie Dent, republican from Pennsylvania. Congressman, democrats have called for Jeff Sessions, the Attorney General to recuse himself from what we know from reportings and investigation. Do you agree with them?
CHARLIE DENT, UNITED STATES CONGRESSMAN FROM PENNSYLVANIA: No. At this point, I would say, no, unless there`s some suggestion that Attorney General Sessions had some inappropriate contact with the Russians. If that were the case, then yes. But I have not heard that. But I believe that Senator Sessions should be engaged on this issue.
HAYES: Let me read to you from the Department of Justice regulations on Conflict of Interest. "No employee shall participate in a criminal investigation or prosecution if he has a personal or political relationship with any person or organization substantially involved in the conduct that is the subject of the investigation or prosecution." Clearly, he violates that.
DENT: Well, we`ll see. I mean, that`s going to be up to the Attorney General to determine whether or not he should recuse himself from this particular matter. But I will tell you that many Attorney Generals who are appointed often have close political ties to the President who appoints them. I`m mean, that`s just a simple reality.
HAYES: Well, he chaired - he chaired a campaign committee, didn`t he?
DENT: Yes, he was very involved with the campaign, that`s true. I mean, but the issue to me is, was he involved with the Russians? I have not heard anybody suggest that about the Attorney General.
HAYES: But -- so you don`t think - you don`t think these Department of Justice Regulations should apply here? He should just waive them?
DENT: Well, again, I suspect you could have the Attorney General recuse himself or herself on any number of matters. I just saw it too, you know. Did Loretta Lynch recuse herself from the Clinton e-mail situation where she had that contact with President Clinton -
HAYES: She did.
DENT: - on the tarmac? Well, she recused herself? OK, well, that`s a -
HAYES: Yes, after a 30-minute meeting, she was forced to recuse herself.
DENT: OK, then she did. But the point I`m making is that Senator Sessions - or I should say, Attorney General Sessions will have to make that determination for himself. If I -- if I had any suspicion that he was - or I had any reason to believe that he was involved with the Russians, and I would certainly say, yes, that he should recuse himself, but I have not heard that so far.
HAYES: What do you think is the appropriate avenue for investigation here?
DENT: I believe that the - I believe there should be an investigation. I believe the House and Senate Intelligence Committees should conduct a thorough investigation. Those members on those committees have access to a lot of information that the rest of us will not have access to. Now that said, let`s see how that investigation goes, let`s see what they find and let`s review their findings. And after that point, we can talk about whether or not there should be a select committee. But I agree that there should be an investigation. These are very serious issues.
HAYES: Are you - are you concerned?
DENT: Yes. Of course, I am. I`m very concerned. I`m deeply concerned. I`ve been very concerned about the administration`s - at least I should - more of the President`s and General Flynn`s very conciliatory comments toward the Russians. I believe that the Russians are a threat and an adversary. That the Russians want to break up NATO. They want to unravel the European Union. They want to undermine democratic institutions. Not only in our country but throughout Europe and the West.
And they want to diminish American power and influence anywhere they can in the world. So I would say that the Russians are a threat. They`re an adversary, we need to understand their interest, be very clear eyed about it, and I also think we should be very - just very wary as we deal with them. We want good relations with the Russians but we have to understand what -- their interests and ours are not aligned.
HAYES: Final question here and just pivoting for a moment. You`re a member of Congress in the House. There`s been a lot of reporting that there`s essentially no clear messaging coming from the White House about what you guys are to do. Tax Reform, the nature of the Affordable Care Act, what exactly the legislative agenda is? Do you know what`s going on at that White House? Are they communicating to you?
DENT: Well, look, I believe that the White House must be much more clear in terms of its policy agenda. I feel that if you`re the President of the United States and if you want to deal with health care reform or tax reform, it`s an imperative that the President present a proposal to Congress in bill from. That`s the ideal way to do it. Then congress will chop on it. That`s just the - that`s a function of leadership. So I would - I certainly think that the White House does need to become more engaged on the policy specifics --
DENT: - of the proposals that they`re advancing. That has not happened yet and I hope it does happen soon.
HAYES: All right. Congressman Charlie Dent, thank you for your time tonight, Sir. Appreciate it.
DENT: Thank you Chris.
HAYES: Coming up, is the Trump administration facing a scandal as big as Watergate? President Richard Nixon`s former lawyer joins me after this break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELIOT ENGEL, UNITED STATES CONGRESSMAN FROM NEW YORK: I think it has the potential to be bigger than Watergate. That`s why I`m for the creation of an Independent Commission to seek out really the truth. We have a situation, you know, Watergate was serious and there were lies there and there was a political break in. This, with Russia`s involvement has the potential to be far, far more dangerous.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: A scandal swirling around the White House barely -- not even a month then. The Watergate analogy is being thrown around a lot these days. Particularly the last 24 hours. We thought we`d consult with someone who saw it happened up close. Joining me now, former White House Counsel of Richard Nixon, John Dean. John, this is - this is something people throw around any time there`s a hint of anything scandal in Washington. There`s the invocation of Watergate, sometimes in preposterous circumstances, and both parties do it. What do you think about its implication under these set of circumstances?
JOHN DEAN, RICHARD NIXON`S FORMER WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: Well, there is of course the suffix "gate" that gets attached to most any scandal today, to designate it as a scandal. In the bigger picture stepping back and looking at this historically, Watergate if you recall ran about 900 days, it was a very protracted scandal. It began very slowly with only one or two papers covering it and slowly expanded. This situation with Trump has sort of exploded at the start. And we`re in a different media era and that may account for it. But we`re certainly off to a - what is a sort of atmosphere that Watergate had on a more protracted bases.
HAYES: So it`s sort of atmospherics to you in the sort of, the drum beat of revelation which are accelerated to you but they do feel familiar in that sense?
DEAN: Well Chris, there is no - in today`s world there is no scandal unless it`s a mediated event. Unless the media itself makes it into a scandal. The media is giving a lot of attention to this administration. So you have the makings of a - of a serious and protracted scandal here. They seem to happen faster because of the way news cycles are instant today whereas they were - what, three networks and PBS, there were a couple newspapers covering Watergate early, primarily the Washington Post, occasionally the New York Times, so it moved at a much slower pace. Laurence Tribe made an interesting comment the other night, where he said it`s like a black hole where history is just getting sucked into it right now, and I think, that`s a good analogy of what`s happening.
HAYES: You know, one of the parallels here, we`ve seen the President - I asked Roger Stone about this and he said, you know the President was certainly - Nixon would certainly hate the leaks. And obviously there`s a huge paring. Nixon became obsessed with the leaks over coming out of the White House and wanted criminal prosecutions and we`re seeing the President today talking about quote "Illegal leaks." And he has a point in the certain extent that they probably are violations of the law, to the extent that people are leaking classified information. But there is a parallel in that deep throat Mark Phelps was an agent in the FBI with his own kind of ax to grind that drove a lot of this.
DEAN: Well, that`s true. And Watergate itself was very much born in leaks. It was the setting up of the so-called "plumbers unit" that was investigating leaks for Nixon that had Howard Hunt and Gordon Liddy, the two principal guys that would organize later Watergate. And they initially - and become - the reason the White House was involved in Watergate is because of the things they had done when working at the White House. Mainly breaking into Daniel Ellsberg`s Psychiatrist`s office, trying to find out if he was up to more leaks. So some media says -
HAYES: Right. That`s it. I have forgotten that that was the origin story. Right. Of course. The plumbers -
HAYES: - start because of the White House obsession with stopping leaks.
DEAN: That`s exactly right and that we have now - we have another President who is - seems equally as obsessed. Maybe hopefully he`s learned something from history. He was old enough to remember Watergate and he will - he`ll avoid using the kind of leak cures that were used by Richard Nixon.
HAYES: What did you learn from that White House about what happens if a President is willing to cut corners?
DEAN: It`s not wise. Presidents have to be very open about what they`re going to do. They cannot have secret squads looking for leakers. They can`t have enemies that they want to punish because of their leaks. It`s part of the territory. It was inevitable because of the way Trump is approaching his Presidency. He`s planning to shake things up.
There`s going to be bureaucracies both in the White House, National Security Council permanent staff, over at the Office of Management and Budget there`s permanent staff. Those people aren`t going to like it. This is going to be a very leak prone presidency. Not to mention what will happen out in the department and agencies with some of these cabinet members who want to - in essence, take apart the agencies they`re going to be running. So it`s going to be a leak-prone presidency. If anything Nixon has taught, it is just let it flow and just do your thing.
HAYES: That is - that is an important counsel to the President of the United States from John Dean. Thank you, Sir. Appreciate it.
HAYES: Still ahead, why yet another Trump pick is gone. The second in just three days. What happened with Andrew Puzder, after this break.
HAYES: President Trump is now down two cabinet-level appointees in three days after his nominee for Labor Secretary, fast food executive Andrew Puzder withdrew today when it became clear Senate Republicans lacked the votes to confirm him. Puzder was probably done in by several issues -- right wing opposition to his views on immigration, 30-year-old abuse allegations, since retracted, from his ex- wife, and a huge progressive mobilization against his anti-labor positions and practices.
His withdrawal marks a huge victory for that organized opposition.
Joining me now, Dorian Warren, president of Center for Community Change, fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. And you`ve been sort of at the nexus of a lot of the organizing that was happening around this nomination.
What was the mobilization like?
DORIAN WARREN, PRESIDENT, CENTER FOR COMMUNITY CHANGE: So the mobilization started in December when a broad coalition of worker organizations, labor unions, community organizations, progressive groups started meeting weekly to plan the opposition campaign around Puzder led by his very workers at CKE, that`s the company that owns Carl Jr.s and Hardees.
And so his own - they organized a series of protests every week, including just this Monday at Hardee`s headquarters in St. Louis, fast food workers protested in front, to say this is his record on labor issues.
You couldn`t think of a worst poster child to be secretary of labor. Dozens of employment discrimination lawsuits, wage theft and other wage violations at the workplace, gender discrimination, like everything you can think of.
HAYES: Precisely the kinds of infractions that the department itself exists to enforce is what was -- the routine and systematic infractions from the business that he ran.
And so you have this coalition of his own workers protesting him for over six weeks with a broad community of labor and progressive organizations supporting this and, by the way, really good independent journalism. There is a six-week series in this out fit called Capital and Main that highlighted all of the employment violations and sex discrimination lawsuits against Puzder.
So it`s a combination of really good reporting and journalism and organizing with a broad coalition of workers and community organizations.
HAYES: There was also the fact that he appeared he had hired someone who was undocumented at a certain point and then fired that person which had given conservatives the willies a little bit, and that we know in the past has been something.
There`s a kind of broader question here about what -- how mobilization is working at this moment. Are there lessons to be drawn from Puzder?
WARREN: I think the lessons are sustained and targeted and strategic mobilization. Sustained - again, this organizing started in December. So this has been going on since December. Every week there have been protests of workers, particularly, again, from the company that he ran since 2000 and that he`s still in charge of. His own workers protesting every single week, right?
So sustained mobilization, but targeted and strategic, right, focused at his restaurants, focused on bringing up the issues around wage violations.
HAYES: And it`s funny you say sustained, because I remember talking to a congressman back in 2009 about the Tea Party - about the town halls, and people get shook. Like, they don`t -- people don`t like protests, they don`t like being the subject of it like as a human being. And we saw Puzder telling someone today that he, quote, "didn`t want the abuse" anymore.
\WARREN: He didn`t want the abuse. Let`s look at the record about who`s the abuser here.
HAYES: But the broader lesson I think also is part of it - and we saw in the the town halls, is showing up, making yourself known, being loud, people do not like it as a general rule, like people in power anywhere across the ideological and political spectrum, it does have an impact.
WARREN: It has an impact. And you can - look, we know from public opinion polls that Senator Collins in Maine and Murkowski in Alaska, they had moved, based on public opinion their constituents. Protest works, it moves public opinion and it gets legislators to act.
HAYES: All right. Dorian Warren, thanks for your time tonight.
WARREN: Still to come, actress Susan Sarandon and climate activist and filmmaker Josh Fox react to the first weeks of the Trump administration.
Plus, tonight`s Thing One, Thing Two starts right after this break.
HAYES: Thing One tonight, President Trump appearing with Benjamin Netanyahu was asked by an Israeli reporter today about anti-Semitic incidents here in the U.S.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENITIFIED MALE: Mr. President, since your election campaign and even after your victory, we`ve seen a sharp rise in anti-Semitic incidents across the United States and I wonder what do you say to those among the Jewish community in the States and in Israel and maybe around the world who believe and feel that your administration is playing with xenophobia and maybe racist tones.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: It`s pretty good question. How did President Trump respond? Here`s how he began.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Well, I just want to say that we are very honored by the victory that we had, 306 electoral college votes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: It just got stranger from there, what the president said next is Thing Two in 60 seconds.
HAYES: President Trump today asked by an Israeli reporter about the rise of anti-Semitic attacks in America. The president began his answer by talking about his election win.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We were not supposed to crack 220. You know that, right? There was no way to 221. But then they said there`s no way to 270. And there`s tremendous enthusiasm out there.
I will say that we are going to have peace in this country. We are going to stop crime in this country. We are going to do everything within our power to stop long-simmering racism and every other thing that`s going on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Every other thing that`s going on.
And as to the second part of the question about those in the Jewish community who feel his administration has cultivated bigotry, the president affirmed he has Jewish friends.
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TRUMP: As far as people -- Jewish people, so many friends, a daughter who happens to be here right now, a son-in-law and three beautiful grandchildren.
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TRYMAINE LEE, MSNBC: The violence is spread beyond the gun. Poverty is violence, right? Hunger is real violence. The trauma that folks are seeing inside the home, but also the repeated exposure to violence in streets. People are wound up and traumatized and all of that is violent, but we don`t address that kind of violence.
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HAYES: In the nearly four years this show has been on the air, we`ve reported extensively on race and policing, violence and democracy and how all of those things fit together. From reporting in the midst of protest and unrest and outrage and mourning in Ferguson to North Charleston, Dallas and Baltimore, to talking with police officers and taking a look at their training, I`ve drawn on that reporting for a book I wrote called "A Colony in a Nation."
I wrote it over the past year. And I started working on it, because I wanted to better understand a key question -- why have we, as Americans, as voters, created the justice system we have? And what exactly is that system?
"A Colony in a Nation" is about policing and democracy, and it is, I think, particularly relevant in this new law and order age of President Trump. It comes out March 21 from Norton. And it`s available for pre-order now at any number of fine booksellers. I`ll be touring the country soon and I`m going to let you know more about that in the coming days.
HAYES: For the first time since last March, Oscar winning actor and Bernie Sanders supporter Susan Sarandon is on the show.
When she was last here, she made headlines for suggesting she might not support the eventual Democratic nominee. That quote "some people feel Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately," well that went kind of viral.
Now, three weeks into the new administration she rejoined us on set alongside environmental activist Josh Fox to highlight what`s happening with the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.
That project had been put on hold by the Obama administration after months of protests by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and their supporters, but within days of taking office, President Trump reauthorized the project.
We spoke about that, but first I had to ask Sarandon about what she said last time she was on the show nearly a year ago.
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HAYES: Isn`t the question always in an election about choices, right. I mean, I think a lot of people think to themselves well, if it`s Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton -- and I think Bernie Sanders probably would think this...
SUSAN SARANDON, ACTRESS: I think Bernie would encourage people because he doesn`t have any ego in this thing, but I think a lot of people are sorry I just can`t bring myself to do that.
HAYES: How about you personally?
SARANDON: I don`t know. I`m going to see what happens.
HAYES: I cannot believe as you`re watching Donald Trump...
SARANDON: You know, some people feel Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately if he gets in and things will really...
HAYES: Oh, you`re saying the Leninist model of heighten the contradictions?
SARANDON: Yeah, some people feel that.
HAYES: don`t you think that`s dangerous?
SARANDON: I think what`s going on now -- if you think that it`s pragmatic to shore up the status quo right now, then you`re not in touch with the status quo.
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HAYES: What do you think of that now?
SARANDON: I think if you`re not in touch with the status quo you`re going to lose.
I mean, if you`re not -- if you`re arguing for shoring up the status quo then when America is asking for change you`re going to have a difficult time.
HAYES: OK, but there`s two elements that are twinned together that I want to just be clear on. There`s a descriptive one, which is like a political analysis, basically, which is the point you`re making, right, if you do not present to people enough of a choice for change you can be on the losing side, right?
But then there`s also a kind of normative one about like what are the choices we make as citizens? And do you feel that you properly appreciated what a Donald Trump presidency would be?
SARANDON: I think that I absolutely feel that analyzing and spending time and energy talking about blaming people or who made mistakes or what should have happened is really wasting your time and energy because what we have now is a populous that is awake. What we have now -- I mean, we`re here to talk about what`s happening to the environment. The pipeline didn`t get to the river overnight. This has been going on for...
HAYES: You`re talking about the Dakota -- just to be clear, the Dakota Access Pipeline.
SARANDON: Dakota Access, but also all these other pipelines that have exploded, how many in the last three weeks? Seven or nine leaks and explosions, so let me just finish.
HAYES: Yeah, please.
SARANDON: So now he`s so clumsy and so bad at putting these things through that everybody is awake and saying oh, my god, what`s happening to the EPA?
HAYES: Which in some ways you can see as a vindication of what you said. I mean, in the sense of like yes, is it bringing the revolution?
SARANDON: I really am not a proponent for trying to have a revolution when we could have had peaceful change without. We could have had a revolution that was a legal revolution. I would much rather have seen it with a leader like Bernie Sanders who has continued constantly doing what he`s doing.
So what we have to do now is spend our time and energy focusing on how to fight what`s going on. And so when people are attacking me or trying to say this could have happened or aren`t you -- you know, really? That`s where we want to spend our time and energy?
I mean, you`re a journalist, you consider yourself a journalist, right?
I spend 15 hours a day covering what`s going on.
SARANDON: So, how many hours did you spend on Standing Rock?
HAYES: Not very much.
SARANDON: So what we need from you is to allow people to understand what`s happening and to also allow them to understand a very...
HAYES: But part of that is -- Josh, this question of the status quo seems to me the crucial one here, right, because at one level it`s like particularly from the standpoint of the environment, right, let`s talk about the pipeline. The status quo prior to the election was totally untenable because it was heading us towards disaster. All of us at this table agree with that.
But it was also the case that it could get much, much worse, for instance, the head of Exxon could be the next Secretary of State.
JOSH FOX, ENVIRONMENTALIST: Couldn`t agree with you more, Chris, on that point. But the point is this is there`s two pieces to this, right. There`s what`s totally unacceptable to people and what creates an enthusiasm in an election. And when I was on the platform committee, I was there with Bill McKibbon (ph) talking with Bernie Sanders, talking with the Clinton campaign, trying to negotiate for the Democrats to have a ban on fracking in their platform, which was a position that would have created an enormous amount of enthusiasm in states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina, you see where I`m going with this?
And the Clinton campaign consistently decided, no, we`re going to side with the oil industry on these questions and they employed fracking lobbyists as their energy people.
People could see this. She did a $650,000 fundraiser with the leading fracking company in America the day after the platform hearings when we had come to some compromises. So what was happening, Chris, was not only are we going to side over and over again with the establishment that the Demorats created and with the situation -- because I said in those hearings. I said mark my words people are not going to vote to frack themselves. They`re not.
HAYES: But they did vote to frack themselves, because they elected the guy who is going to frack the entire country. So the idea that people did not vote to frack themselves -- they did. That`s exactly what they did.
SARADON: But the country was already fracked.
HAYES: They just signed an executive order today to get rid of the disclosures of oil company payments to foreign governments.
SARADON: And you have to fight that.
But don`t you understand that this was already happening? And if you look at all the super delegates, they`re all these people that are funding the pipeline.
FOX: Again, back to my point about enthusiasm. You can`t win an election without voter enthusiasm and time and time again that was deflating the balloon. Deflating the balloon.
We were pleading with the Clinton campaign, pleading with them on the phone after Bernie was already -- after Hillary was the nominee, I was on the platform committee. I was one of those people saying no vote for Hillary. That what I did. And I was one of those people who...
HAYES: I know you were.
Can you look me in the eyes, both of you, and say yes, 24 days into the Trump administration this is about what I expected it would be?
SARADON: What is the point of even saying that?
HAYES: I`m just asking you that. I`m just asking you -- we all make judgments about what we -- the choices are. And I`m asking you, can you say - look me in the eyes and say, yeah, this is about what I thought it would be, 24 days in.
SARADON: Can you look me in the eyes and tell me you are doing your job to cover these issues.
HAYES: Yes. I can.
SARADON: You just told me that you didn`t really cover DAPL. Are you covering now all of these explosion that just happened? Because that`s what we need you to do. We don`t need you to have a conversation about my imagination about where Trump was going to be.
What I need you to do is talk about and tell people that listen -- your money is paying for these pipelines.
HAYES: Excuse me, excuse me.
SARADON: And people don`t make this association.
HAYES: Excuse me.
I spend all day covering things, OK? There are things that don`t get covered, because there are things that don`t get covered. Have we talked about the hundreds of thousands of people getting slaughtered in Syria everyday? No. Like, are you guys devoting your activism to that, no, you`re not.
SARADON: Yeah, I am.
HAYES: You choose your battles, right?
But the point is that...
SARADON: But you don`t think that water is a very important...
HAYES: Of course it`s important.
SARADON: But are you aware of how many pipelines are going all over this country and how many people...
HAYES: So then the question becomes what is the leverage now with this government to stop that?
FOX: Well, it`s -- there are many points of leverage, obviously divestment is a big one. Taking -- making sure your money is not in the banks that fund these pipelines.
SARADON: Every city should follow the lead of Seattle and divest from these pipelines. People have to understand...
HAYEDS: From banks, specifically that are partial investors in them, just to be clear to folks listening.
SARADON: Most of them. So just the way South Africa worked. People have to be aware that when they buy products, even though they might be tweeting and liking and everything else and trying to get the word out, they have to know that if they`re in certain banks that they`re paying for these things and divestment really works.
FOX: And I would say that Donald Trump is a referendum on Obama`s legacy for progressives because progressives could not muster the courage to vote for the clean power plan when it meant more fracking. To say OK, well we had a recovery but 95 percent of that recovery went to the 1 percent and everybody else in America is at 2008 levels. We - you can`t get mad at us. We were the people who were out there saying...
HAYES: I`m not mad at anyone.
FOX: We are pushing for Bernie here because this is a candidate that`s actually addressing the issues.
HAYES: Right, but the question is what is the leverage now?
FOX: The thumb on the scale, like the DNC did, first we have to do is get Keith Ellison elected and absolutely these protests that you`re seeing all over the country, we`re just getting started.
SARANDON: The good thing about this horrible thing of having Trump is that people are awake and they`re participating and they`re having town meetings and they`re having -- going to people`s doorsteps and saying "what have you done?` and how could you get DeVos in?
I mean, on so many levels because it`s really visible now. I mean, Exxon has been involved in our government for a long time. All of these people have been involved in our government, it just hasn`t been such a mess, so obvious.
And this guy is so fumbling that he`s giving a real lesson in how things work or don`t work. So, that`s our opportunity, as Leonard Cohen said, you know the cracks are where the light comes in. So now we have to be the light.
HAYES: You can find my full, unedited conversation with Susan Saradon and Josh Fox on our website. And that is All In for this evening.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END