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

Trump and Stormy Tranascript 1/12/18 All In with Chris Hayes

Guests: Maxine Waters, Jelani Cobb, Lanhee Chen, Richard Blumenthal, Maria Hinojosa, Randall Pinkett, Michelle Goldberg

Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: January 12, 2018 Guest: Maxine Waters, Jelani Cobb, Lanhee Chen, Richard Blumenthal, Maria Hinojosa, Randall Pinkett, Michelle Goldberg

CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: And that`s HARDBALL for now. Thanks for being with us. "ALL IN" with Chris Hayes starts right now.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are you a racist?

REID: Trump ducks the question.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are you a racist?

REID: As we get the complete story of the President`s slur in the Oval Office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He repeated that. He didn`t just say it one time.

REID: Tonight the exclusive reaction to Trump`s racist remarks in the White House. The relative silence from Republicans.


REID: And Maxine Waters and Richard Blumenthal on what Democrats should do next.

Plus the new Wall Street Journal report on a Trumpworld payment to a former adult film star.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Does anyone really believe that story?

REID: And what we learned from Trump`s big day at the doctor.

TRUMP: A great, great success.

REID: ALL IN starts now.


REID: Good evening from New York, I`m Joy Reid in for Chris Hayes. A week after the release of the book Fire and Fury kicked off a national conversation about the President`s mental fitness, we are now finally confronting the truth about Donald Trump`s character specifically his racism. It`s a fact that for many Americans hasn`t really been a question at all but which many in politics and the media have shied away from, even when Trump questioned President Barack Obama`s place of birth, when he kicked off his presidential campaign calling Mexicans rapists, and so on and so on and so on. Well, it`s no longer a debate. And today we witnessed an unprecedented spectacle. An American President doing what presidents have done every year since 1986, holding an event commemorating the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But in this case, the President had to avoid shouted questions from reporters about whether he is a racist.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, will you give an apology for the statement yesterday?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President, did you refer to African nations as shitholes --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are you a racist?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, will you respond to these serious questions about the statement, sir?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, absolutely not --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We`re talking to the President, not you. Mr. President, are you a racist?


REID: Those questions, of course, came in response to a report by The Washington Post, later confirmed by NBC News and other outlets, that the President of the United States, during an immigration meeting with lawmakers, in the Oval Office, asked of African immigrants, why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here? And adding, why do we need more Haitians? Take them out. The President`s comments were praised by white supremacists and rationalized on Fox News. But by and large, they seem to have flipped some kind of switch in the national consciousness. In the same way that Fire and Fury made it OK to talk openly about the President`s mental health, Trump`s remarks have finally given us all permission to stop tiptoeing around the r-word. The country and the world are now being forced to reckon with an American president whose policy goals, it seems, include making America white again.

After the White House pointedly did not deny the reports last night, this morning Donald Trump defended himself on Twitter saying, "the language used by meat the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used. Never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country. Never said take them out." Of the seven lawmakers who we know were in that meeting, almost no one has come forward to set the record straight. We haven`t heard a peep from Kevin McCarthy, the number two Republican in the House or from Bob Goodlatte, GOP Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. Congressman Mario Diaz-Ballart, Republican from Florida, released a statement saying only "there are almost 800,000 young DACA beneficiaries who will face imminent deportation in March if we do not reach a deal. Nothing will divert my focus to stop the deportation of these innocent people whose futures are at stake."

Senators Tom Cotton and David Perdue, both immigration hardliners, said in a joint statement they simply couldn`t remember. "We do not recall the President saying these comments specifically, but what he did call out was the imbalance in our current immigration system which does not protect American workers and our national interest." But their colleague Senator Lindsey Graham seems to have a different recollection. According to his fellow South Carolina Senator, Republican Tim Scott, Graham told him the reports were "basically accurate." So far the only person who`s given a full account of what the president said yesterday is the one Democrat who was president -- who was present, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, a leading advocate for DREAMers and other immigrant groups. In a series of press appearances this morning, Durbin recounted exactly what happened inside the Oval Office.


SEN. DICK DURBIN (D), ILLINOIS: The President came into the Oval Office and Senator Lindsey Graham and I made our presentation. As Senator Graham made his presentation, the President interrupted him several times with questions. And in the course of his comments, said things which were hate- filled, vile, and racist. We have a group that have temporary protective status in the United States because they were the victims of crises and disasters and political upheaval. The largest group is El Salvadoran, the second is Honduran, and the third is Haitian. And when I mentioned that fact to him he said, "Haitians, do we need more Haitians?" And then he went on and started to describe the immigration from Africa that was being protected in this bipartisan measure.

That`s when he used these vile and vulgar comments, calling the nations they come from shitholes. The exact word used by the President not more, not just once but repeatedly. My colleague, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, spoke up and made a direct comment on what the president said. I was very proud of him. It took courage for what he did. And I made my own comments in response to it but for him to confront the President as he did literally sitting next to him, took extraordinary political courage, and I respect him for it. He said "put me down for wanting more Europeans to come to this country. Why don`t we get more people from Norway?" That was exactly what the President said.


REID: I`m joined now by Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters of California. So, Congresswoman, you have Dick Durbin saying that when immigration from Haiti or the TPS situation from Honduras and Haiti and El Salvador was described, Donald Trump said, "Haitians, do we need more Haitians?" On the question of Africa, he called those nations shitholes, that was the exact word used by the President per Lindsey Graham. And then the last bit here, Donald Trump saying "put me down for wanting more Europeans to come for this country." Your thought, Congresswoman?

REP. MAXINE WATERS (D), CALIFORNIA: Well, you know, I have called him what I know him to be for a long time. Remember some time ago I called him scumbag. I`ve called him a racist, deplorable, despicable, added to what others are calling him, a moron, ignorant, on and on and on. The United States of America is represented by the most despicable human being that could possibly ever walk the earth. I don`t know when Americans are going to tire of this lying man. It has been documented that he has told over 2,001 lies since he has been in office. He name-calls. He basically disparaged a United States Congresswoman and basically said she would do anything for a contribution. Talked about, as you know, during the campaign, grabbing women by their private parts.

What more do we need to see or hear from this racist man? Not only is he racist, he is an embarrassment for this country. Our allies are quickly moving away from him. What are we waiting for? He is basically bringing this country down. And for all of those Republicans on the other side who stand with him, who claimed to have been patriotic, they are not patriotic. They are weaklings with not the guts to stand up, or they join him as racists. And so I have known this, and I`ve called for his impeachment over and over again. I`ve been criticized for it but I don`t know what else we need to see about him. I know a lot of people are saying, let`s see what Mueller is going to do, is he going to connect the dots?

Well, this man has obstructed justice right before our very eyes. We keep hearing about all of these meetings and connections with the Russians, about his family and others. I simply believe that not only has he colluded, and of course he has obstructed justice, but his character is such that the United States and the citizens of this country, rather, should not be willing to tolerate. He`s a bad image for our children, and he should be impeached. We should move him out of office. The American citizens who are fed up with him are looking for Congress to take responsibility and do what we must do and impeach him, get rid of him, get him out of her.

REID: And you know, Congresswoman, you`ve hit on a point because when you say, how much more can we tolerate? And you know, I think those (INAUDIBLE) we hear from people all the time. What can we do? And the truth is that only Congress can rein in a President of the United States and that impeachment or censure has to begin in the House of Representatives. I want to play you two pieces of sound from the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan and the way he reacted to Donald Trump`s racism back on the campaign trail and the way that he reacted to what we just learned the President said in the Oval Office. And this was -- these are those two things. And this is -- the first one is June 2016. Here you go.


RYAN: Claiming a person can`t do the job because of their race is sort of like the textbook definition of a racist comment. I think that should be absolutely disavowed. It`s absolutely unacceptable.

The first thing that came to my mind was very unfortunate, unhelpful, whether you`re coming from Haiti. We`ve got great friends from Africa in Janesville who are doctors, who are just incredible citizens. And I just think it`s important that we celebrate that.


REID: First piece of sound was when Donald Trump disparaged Judge Curiel, saying that he`s Mexican, therefore he can`t judge a case against Donald Trump. What do you make of the declamation of Paul Ryan`s outrage from June of 2016 to today?

WATERS: Well, evidently he is not a real leader. And I wish I could say he didn`t have the courage of his convictions because I don`t know if he has any. But I know this. History will not be kind to him, to these Republicans, and to those who are basically standing by him, embracing him. As far as I`m concerned, they`re confirming that they`re just as bad as he is. And so for Paul Ryan, who is supposed to be a leader, who, you know, occupies the speakership for the Congress, for the House of Representatives, he is irresponsible. He is not providing leadership. He`s not doing his job. We need to get rid of him also.

REID: And Congresswoman, John Lewis, Congressman John Lewis, of course, civil rights legend John Lewis, is not going to going, he says to the State of the Union. Are you going to go?

WATERS: Oh, no. You know, I didn`t go to the inauguration. I didn`t go to, you know, the Joint Session that was held after that. I don`t intend to go to this one. Why would I take my time to go and sit and listen to a liar, to someone who lies in the face of facts, who -- someone who can change their tune day in and day out? What does he have to say that I would be interested in? I don`t trust him. I don`t appreciate him. And I wouldn`t waste my time sitting in that house listening to what he has to say. He does not deserve my attention.

REID: Congresswoman Maxine Waters, definitive as always, thank you so much for your time tonight.

WATERS: You`re so welcome.

REID: Thank you. And for more on the fallout from the President`s racist comments, let`s bring in Jelani Cobb, Staff Writer for the New Yorker and Lanhee Chen, former Adviser to Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney`s Presidential campaigns. And Jelani, you just heard the Congresswoman say she`s not going to go and sit in that chamber. I think the next question then would be, should Democrats continue to sit across from Donald Trump and negotiate DACA or anything else with him? Does it make sense to keep doing that in your view?

JELANI COBB, STAFF WRITER, NEW YORKER: Well, first, I should shout-out to Paul Ryan for the -- some of my best friends are African comment.

REID: Yes.

COBB: You know, we haven`t heard that --

REID: They`re doing a wonderful job.

COBB: We`ve never heard that line before. But no, no. This has been apparent from the beginning. Even at the outset when Chuck Schumer said that he would look for areas that he could work with the President on. And Andrew Cuomo said something to that effect too before he kind of got the hailstorm of criticism and then turned around and realized that this was kind of swimming upstream politically. And so I don`t -- the thing that I don`t understand is the kind of infinite faith that there is some honorable portion of Donald Trump`s soul that they can stakeout and find a deal with that he actually is going to adhere to. And this has been shown time and time again that he may make an overture, but it`s like Charlie Brown with the football, they pull it away, and then it comes back a few weeks later saying, well, perhaps we can find some area to work with him on. It doesn`t exist.

And to pretend that it does I think fundamentally misunderstands, one, who Donald Trump is and two, what was his ultimate objective in pursuing the presidency itself? It wasn`t to further agenda -- an agenda, it was the naked pursuit of power. And what he wants to use that power for is to humiliate or to indulge with his own whims. You remember when Mitt Romney thought that it was perhaps in line for the secretary of state position, comes out, and he makes that apology and then he yanks it out. The whole point is Trump is sitting there enjoying you know, watching Mr. Romney apologize in that way. And so the short answer to this is, no, I don`t think there`s any reason to believe that anything about this person is going to change, and there`s never been any reason to suspect that.

REID: And Lanhee, you worked for, you know, Senator Marco Rubio, who Donald Trump also took delight in humiliating during the 2016 campaign, only to have Senator Rubio saying he`d be honored to help him become president and gravel along with the rest of them. And as you recall, Senator Rubio had to run, not walk but run away from comprehensive immigration reform when he was a part of the gang of eight because the base of the Republican Party had tissue rejection against the idea of anything that would permit the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country to stay. So in that vein, are we too narrow in just talking about Donald Trump? Do we need to talk about the fact that the Republican Party itself is so dead set against immigration that Donald Trump is just channeling them, he`s not leading them?

LANHEE CHEN, FORMER ADVISER TO MARCO RUBIO AND MITT ROMNEY`S PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGNS: Yes, well this is what it comes back to, Joy. I think the challenge that Republicans are facing, I think the reason why quite frankly you haven`t heard more of them with the kind of response that is justified and warranted in this situation, is because they`re concerned about repercussions from elements of the base. It is midterm election year. Immigration has always been an extremely toxic issue in the Republican Party. The politics around it have been extremely treacherous for many, many years, and nothing about that has changed.

In fact, if anything it`s gotten worse. The identity and racial politics have gotten worse over this last -- over this last year. And so I think Republicans are responding to that reality, that this is a difficult issue that`s only gotten more difficult, and immigration is an issue that doesn`t look to be getting easier any time soon. Unfortunately what`s transpired the last 24 hours has only made it less likely there will be a deal on DACA, less likely we`ll see permanent and comprehensive immigration reform, and less likely that we`ll have a rational immigration system going forward.

REID: I`m sorry, but is that good enough Jelani, because if you`re talking about the fact that Republicans are making a calculation in their minds about what the electoral impact would be of responding to a moral issue, quite frankly. I mean, when you listen to this story, Dick Durbin himself saying exactly two people in that room of eight people had the guts to say anything when Donald Trump made racist remarks, himself, and Lindsey Graham and Lindsey Graham won`t even repeat them for cameras. Are we too narrow in what we`re expecting from Republicans if all we`re thinking about is their electoral response?

COBB: Well, I mean, I think the fundamental point of it is that I think they`re afraid to deal with the bully. I don`t think it`s much more complicated than that. You know, a fundamental part of him -- and this is the nature of his relationship throughout the primaries so it doesn`t really change now. He`s doing to the Republican Party what he did to the other candidates during the primaries. I mean, to think you know, Marco Rubio you know, kind of does this about-face, that he actually insulted Ted Cruz`s wife. I mean, there`s not a kind of fundamental point where it says, well, this is where I draw the line that no one can insult my wife.

If you don`t have that kind of part of your character, why would we expect that -- for there to be anything that`s a bridge too far? I think that has been the nature of what`s happened with the rest of the GOP. Now on the issue of them being concerned about the base, is there anything else, is there anything that comes above the priority of being re-elected? Is there any point in which someone says, I`m actually interested in the well-being of the United States over my own particular political interests? And right now it doesn`t appear to be.

REID: Yes, Lahnee, well, that question to you. You`ve worked with many of these Republicans. Is there anything more to them and to their character other than re-election?

CHEN: Well, look, I don`t think the need to get re-elected is unique to Republicans. I mean, I think both Republicans and Democrats have it. In this situation, yes. Look, I hope -- I would hope that more of them would be willing to step up and make the comments that need to be made. But again, what I come back to is the bully here, we can talk about the bully. The bully is actually elements of the Republican electorate. That is the bully and that is the challenge that`s being faced here.

This is why the Republican Party is headed toward extinction because you have a situation where people are not willing to stand up for the right things and they`re not willing to stand up and say to people look, these views are not acceptable, these views are not what America`s about. An American president doesn`t get to pick and choose who he represents. And that should be the bottom line here. But ultimately that is not -- unfortunately our politicians in both parties I think have not found the backbone they need to be successful in that way.

REID: One party one another.

COBB: Well, I mean -- that`s true, that`s true. But we also don`t have people kind of tweeting our way into nuclear war. I think that`s a different category than simply the servile, I want to be elected to another term.

REID: Yes, absolutely. Jelani Cobb, Lanhee Chen, great conversation. Thank you, both. I appreciate it.

CHEN: Thank you.

REID: All right, still to come, on any other day the introduction of a woman named Stormy Daniels and the salacious details about an alleged tryst with Donald Trump would be front page news. But don`t worry, we`ll get to it. Next, the national security implications of Trump`s racist remarks in the Oval Office with Senator Richard Blumenthal, that`s in two minutes.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, will you give an apology for the statement yesterday?

TRUMP: Oh, boy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President, did you refer to African nations as (INAUDIBLE) shitholes --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are you a racist?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, will you respond to these serious questions about this statement, sir?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, absolutely not.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We`re talking to the president, not you, sir. Mr. President, are you a racist?


REID: While Donald Trump continues to duck the question of whether he considers himself a racist, House Democrats are pushing to publicly reprimand, censure Trump, next week for conduct unbecoming a president. And they`re demanding that GOP House leaders bring that resolution to the floor. While Senator Dianne Feinstein today all but called for the President to resign saying, "if the President can`t control himself and lead this country with the authority, dignity, and leadership it requires, then he shouldn`t be the president." With me now is Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut. And Senator, thank you for joining me and do you agree with Senator Feinstein?

SEN. RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D), CONNECTICUT: I agree certainly that if he lacks the character and moral compass to be president, Congress should do something about it. And my feeling is we should engage and confront and fight. That`s the way to deal with a bully. And I want to thank you, by the way, for your sharing your story of your family because it reminds us, such a powerful and compelling story, of our shared immigrant experience. And what Donald Trump has done so divisively and reprehensibly is expressed the dark side, the abyss of America.

And one way to confront him is to call on our Republican colleagues to repudiate him, to join with us in seeking a sensible compromise, to enable the DREAMers to stay in this country. I`m encouraged that we are moving toward a compromise. Whether Donald Trump likes it or not, this nation overwhelmingly believes the DREAMers ought to have an opportunity to stay here and fighting him. If it means giving those DREAMers an opportunity to stay here fairly and effectively, is one way to counter him.

REID: Well, thank you first of all for what you said about my own story. I really do appreciate that, Senator. But I want to go back to this question of this deal that Democrats are trying to get. At this point, does it make sense to have Donald Trump in the room or is this a situation where it`s time for Democrats to bypass the President of the United States and his aides like Steven Miller?

BLUMENTHAL: The next step really is for us to reach out to our Republican colleagues and to ask them, in all good faith, because Donald Trump doesn`t speak for me when he uses that kind of language. And he doesn`t speak for them. He doesn`t speak for America. That`s not America. And I think we can come together with a sensible compromise that enables the DREAMers to stay here and gives rights to their parents and avoids draconian wall- building. If we work among ourselves, across the aisle, together, without the president.

REID: I want to come back to the question of whether you trust your colleagues based on what they`ve done in the last 24 hours. But I want to also go to some of the real world implications of what Donald Trump said and did. This is a statement from the government of Botswana on the African continent. The Botswana government has inquired from the U.S. government through its ambassador to clarify if Botswana is regarded as a shithole country given that there are Botswana nationals residing in the U.S. And we do know there are at least 6,000 U.S. troops deployed in Africa. We just saw the death of Sergeant La David Johnson in Niger. We know we have active operations on the continent to combat terrorism. Is there is a national security risk that countries in Africa would come to doubt the commitment of the United States to mutual defense and cooperation given the President disparaging them?

BLUMENTHAL: Joy, we have special operators in the large numbers throughout those African countries, as well as elsewhere in the world, that the President disparaged. And we need their cooperation. We are working hard for the hearts and minds of their people, for their support using our soft power. And the greatest soft power we have is the example of our democracy, our openness, and tolerance, and we put those special operators, our men and women in uniform, and others in harm`s way when we increase hostility to them. We should be reaching out and highlighting, as you did with your story, the great American immigration experience.

We are beacon of freedom and opportunity. We`re a nation of immigrants. Our strength is our diversity. And Donald Trump ought to come with me one of these days to an immigration naturalization ceremony. I do it as often as I can in the State of Connecticut where new citizens are made. And the spirit and gratitude among those 60 people in every one of those sessions, they come from all over the world, is absolutely inspiring. So yes, we put them at greater risk. And we need to work ultimately with the President. We need him on board to sign a DREAM Act as well as comprehensive immigration reform, as well as other measures.

REID: Well, let me very quickly ask you, we`re out of time, but do you trust your Republican colleagues across the aisle to work with you, given the fact that only one of them, Lindsey Graham, was willing to speak back to the President when he made these disparaging remarks and none of them, including Lindsey Graham, are willing to go before cameras and do what Dick Durbin did and tell us what the president said and denounce him on camera?

BLUMENTHAL: I hope that they will show by their actions, as well as their words, that they`re willing to repudiate Donald Trump, that he does not speak for them by referring to these countries in this way, a blatantly racist remark, odious, invidious, and that they will look at this and step back and join us. I have to trust ultimately or at least hope that they will take that kind of constructive action and that ultimately the president will sign a sensible DREAM Act.

REID: I appreciate your optimism, Senator Richard Blumenthal, thank you for joining us, sir.

BLUMENTHAL: Thank you.

REID: Thank you. And still to come, new reporting that Donald Trump`s lawyer arranged to pay a former adult film star $130,000 one month before the 2016 election. There are late-breaking details just ahead. Stay there.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How do you think the physical will go tomorrow?

TRUMP: I think it`s going to go very well. I`d be very surprised if it doesn`t. It better go well, otherwise, the stock market will not be happy.


REID: Today Donald Trump got his first presidential physical. The exam was not conducted by Trump`s long-time personal physician, Dr. Harold Bornstein, the man who famously and dubiously claimed during the campaign that Trump would be the healthiest president in history. Instead, the duty went to Navy Rear Admiral Ronny Jackson, the White House physician, who`s appointed by President Obama.

That`s Jackson shaking hands with Trump today at Walter Reed as trump was departing the physical after it was over. In the wake of Michael Wolff`s book which claims the President`s closest aides regularly question his mental stability, dozens of experts urged the doctor to examine Trump`s neurological health citing Trump`s declining faculties for complex thought, rambling speech, difficulty completing a thought, along with suspect judgment, planning, problem-solving, and impulse control.

But the White House ruled out a neurological exam insisting that "Trump is sharp as a tack." The White House is not legally required to disclose the result of today`s physical and the 71-year-old who reportedly enjoys lots of fast food, cake, and ice cream, along with 12 diet cokes per day, can release whichever results he chooses.

Late today Sarah Sanders released a very brief statement from Dr. Jackson with Jackson`s name spelled wrong, quote, "the president`s physical exam today at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center went exceptionally well. The president is in excellent health and I look forward to briefing some of the details on Tuesday."

Dr. Jackson is set to join Sanders in the White House briefing room Tuesday, and it`s safe to say the reporters will have lots of questions.

Up next, The Wall Street Journal reports that the adult that this film star was paid $130,000 shortly before election day to keep quiet about an adulterous sexual encounter with Trump. That story right after this.


REID: Quite a story today in The Wall Street Journal, and I quote, "Trump lawyer arranged $130,000 payment for adult film star`s silence." The adult film star in question goes by the stage name Stormy Daniels. Citing people familiar with the matter, The Journal reports that Daniels was paid one month before the 2016 election in exchange for keeping quiet about a 2006 sexual encounter she had with Trump. 2006, that would be one year after Trump married his now-wife, first lady Melania.

The Daily Beast has corroboration for the alleged sexual encounter with film star Alana Evans claiming that Trump and Daniels invited her to their hotel room. Trump allegedly saying "oh, come onA alana, let`s have some fun. Let`s have some fun. Come to the party. We`re waiting for you."

The hush money was reportedly arranged by Trump attorney Michael Cohen, who neither denied nor acknowledged making the payment. "These rumors have circulated time and again since 2011. President Trump once again vehemently denies any such occurrence, as has Miss Daniels."

Cohen released a letter purportedly signed by Daniels denying any sexual encounter, though Daniels herself could not be reached. And a White House official said these are old recycled reports which were published and strongly denied prior to the election.

Trump is accused here of paying hush money to cover up an adulterous encounter. He is not, in this case, being accused of non-consensual behavior, though he is on record bragging that his fame allows him to commit sexual assault, and he`s been accused by sexual misconduct by at least 25 women.

Joining me now, Michelle Goldberg, columnist for The New York Times.

Several interesting things about this, Michelle, one of them is Michael Cohen releasing a statement on this woman`s behalf, not using her real name but using her stage name, Stormy Daniels. There`s so much about this that`s weird. What stands out about it to you?

MICHELLE GOLDBERG, THE NEW YORK TIMES: To me, the thing that stands out about -- well, a couple of things. First of all, the fact that the president paying hush money to a prostitute is like the fifth-most scandalous thing that`s happened today.

But more than that, I thought there was a line in Michael Wolff`s book about Trump that never got the sort of play that I thought it deserved. In it, Steve Bannon going on one of his epic rants and he`s talking about how Trump should listen more to his lawyer Marc Kasowitz, and he`s saying because Kasowitz -- there was what, 100 women during the campaign. Kasowitz took care of them.

And so, you know, I kind of thought, hm, I would like to know more about those 100 women. And now maybe this is the first of those stories. And I would guess more and more of them are going to tweet out -- I mean, are going to come out.

You know, it`s not -- whatever, this is consensual affair. It`s like, you know -- this is who Trump is, right? And so in some ways it`s neither shocking nor particularly scandalous. I think that it kind of confirms what we already know about him.

And then the other thing I think is interesting is that Steve Bannon is obviously somebody who knows about this. And so if you`re thinking about, well, why is this story coming out now? That could be one reason.

REID: Maybe that`s his little revenge. I mean, we do know there`s several things we know. So porn star Jessica Drake came forward in October 2016 to accuse Trump of kissing her without her consent, offering $10,000 in exchange for sex, also in 2006. On November 2016, The Wall Street Journal unearthed documents revealing The National Enquirer shelled out $150,000 to a Playboy centerfold Karen McDougal for a tell-all about her alleged 10 month affair with The Donald from 2006-2007, and they never ran the piece.

So there are instances dating back to 2006, which I believe is when Baron was born, it was one year into the marriage with Melania, and it was around the same time as the infamous Access Hollywood tape. At this point is this kind of a situation where this behavior it`s not shocking, as you said, but it also in a sense kind of boosts him, because part of what Trump is, is the man movement candidate, right, the candidate that`s bringing back the alpha male, as Dr. Gorka likes to say.

GOLDBERG: Well, yeah, I don`t think -- it`s very hard for me to imagine anybody who voted for Trump being dissuaded by the fact, again, that he is paying hush money to a porn star. I feel like they know who he is and maybe they are even impressed that that`s who he is.

REID: But the question is then why is it that sexual scandal can still bring down other candidates? Because even some Republican candidates -- it was temporary with David Vitter, the prostitution scandal temporarily hurt him. You know, you`ve had sort of scandals about people stepping outside their marriage, taking careers down in some cases, even when it`s Republicans. Obviously, the former governor of New York.

But with Trump it doesn`t seem to stick.

GOLDBERG: I think partly it`s for the same reason that Trump`s racism doesn`t stick, right? I mean, think about the way that Trent Lott lost his career.

REID: Yeah.

GOLDBERG: For the kind of comment that wouldn`t even be on a radar today if Trump said it.

I think it`s because, again, all of this depravity is already priced in. You know, people don`t expect anything more of him. And so -- and I think that the real scandal will be if some of those other 100 women turn out to be instead of somebody like Stormy Daniels, have had experiences more akin to, like you said, the kind of couple dozen women who have come forward and said that they were groped or sexually assaulted by the president.

REID: Yeah, it will be interesting to see if these women ever get their day for their stories to be taken seriously, they are in the #metoo movement as well. And I should just point out that Stormy Daniels is not a prostitute as I think was inadvertently said, she is an adult film star. Big difference. Michelle Goldberg, thank you.

GOLDBERG: Thank you.

REID: Appreciate it.

GOLDBERG: All right, and still ahead, how the president`s racism extends beyond his rhetoric and into his staffing and most dangerously his policies. More on that ahead.

Plus, how many lies can you fit in one tweet? Thing One, Thing Two is next.


REID: Thing One tonight, Donald Trump`s lies just passed a milestone, crossing the 2,000 mark. According to The Washington Post, which keeps an ongoing tally of the lies since Trump took office, and it must be hard work to stay on top of it, because the lie counter is only updated through January 9th, which mean The Post will get around to counting this lie from today.

Trump tweeting, "reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for peanuts only to build a new one in an off location for $1.2 billion. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon, no!"

Now we want to make the case right now that this should count, not as one lie but as three. And we`ll tell you why. And that`s Thing 2 in 60 seconds.


REID: So, we here at All In believe the lie-o-meter for the Donald Trump presidency should count this tweet as three lies. Quote, "reason I canceled my trip." OK, stop right there. Trump canceled his trip because of overwhelming opposition in Britain and the inevitable protests. London Mayor Sadiq Khan saying today, it seems he finally got that message. Other current and former British lawmakers echoing that sentiment. So not admitting that is lie number one.

Trump then blames it on, quote, "Obama administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for peanuts." But as The Washington Post explains, quote, "it was the George W. Bush administration that decided more than a decade ago to relocate the embassy during a worldwide push for greater security at U.S. diplomatic sites." Trump can`t blame it on President Obama just because the final sale landed in Obama`s term.

As for the embassy being sold for peanuts, that is lie number three. As The Guardian notes, although the sales price was never disclosed its estimated value, 500 million pounds, was not peanuts by any measure.

So, since Trump doesn`t want to cut the ribbon of the new embassy in London, he can stick to bogus ribbon-cutting ceremonies here at home.


TRUMP: One, two, three -- thank you. Thank you, everybody.


REID: An extraordinary scene unfolded one day in the Oval Office last fall. NBC News reports today a career intelligence analyst, a hostage policy expert, was briefing the president. Trump had a question for her. Where are you from? New York, she said. Unsatisfied, Trump asked again. The woman got more specific, telling the president she was from Manhattan. Trump, still not getting the answer he wanted, asked, where, quote, "your people" are from. The analyst said her parents were Korean whereupon Trump asked, quote, "why the pretty Korean lady" isn`t negotiating with North Korea on his administration`s behalf.

That kind of racist pigeonholing is one of many, many, many, many, many examples of racism we`ve seen from this president.


TRUMP: We have our inner cities, African-Americans, Hispanics, are living in hell because it`s so dangerous. You walk down the street, you get shot.

I have had horrible rulings. I`ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now this judge is of Mexican heritage. I`m building a wall.

I don`t know anything about David Duke, OK? I don`t know anything about what you`re even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacists.

Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country`s representatives can figure out what the hell is going on.

When Mexico sends its people, they`re not sending sending their best. They are rapist.

Look at my African-American over here. Look at him. Are you the greatest?

We have a representative in congress who they say were here a long time ago. They call her Pocahontas.


REID: But with Trump`s comment this week referring to whole countries, have we finally reached a tipping point, a point where a majority of the media will join those who have long been calling Trump a flatout racist. That`s coming up next.



TRUMP: I am the least racist person, the least racist person that you`ve ever seen, the least. I am the least racist person that you`ve ever met, believe me. Is Donald Trump a racist? I am the least racist person that you`ve ever looked at, believe me. The least racist person. The least racist person that you have ever met. I am the least racist person. I`m the least racist person that you`ve ever met. So many of my friends who are black, they say you are the least racist person -- but no, I am the least racist person that you have ever talked to. I am the least racist person you`ve ever met.


REID: Maria Hinojosa is the host of NPR`s Latina USA, Randall Pinkett is the winner of season four winner of The Apprentice, reality TV show, and has denounced Trump`s past racist behavior -- his race behavior in the past.

Randall Pinkett, is Donald Trump the least racist person you have ever met?

RANDALL PINKETT, WINNER, THE APPRENTICE: Donald Trump is vying for the most racist person that I`ve met these days. It`s interesting that he has this sound byte of saying he`s not racist. I remember when he was asked how do you defend against racism? His response was, well, I hired Randall, right, that`s like saying I have my black friend.

So, when we look at the pattern. I think people were afraid to label him a racist early on because there was reticence, maybe political correctness. But after you look at the history, and I grew up near New York, so you look at what is happening in New York. You look housing discrimination. You look at his treatment of Black Lives Matter protesters, all of what we`ve seen is a pattern of racism that has just been consistently across Donald Trump`s career. So, there is no question in my mind he`s a racist, and now I think the question is how are Republicans going to respond in light of this continued pattern just putting them into a corner. And I`m really disappointed in people like Paul Ryan who in my opinion have been less and less vocal as time has progressed in denouncing Donald`s behavior.

REID: Yeah, and in your case, he didn`t even want to hire you alone. He wanted to pair you with a white contestant so that he can make it more palatable for himself.

Maria, you know, we keep talking about the substance of Donald Trump`s racist behavior, but we haven`t talked that much about the outcomes. Could his pronouncements have outcomes that could wind up helping in someways the DACA recipients who are in jeopardy?

MARIA HINOJOSA, NPR: Well, that`s very specific. So I`m not sure, but what we do know, right, is that the DACA program was reinstated because of judges seeing an argument that included Donald Trump`s racial animus towards Mexican, because he said that, right? We know it. I mean, it`s kind of clear.

PINKETT: It`s on video.

HINOJOSA: It`s on video.

So, now the question is, is that clearly he is showing racial animus towards particular people in countries, right. So now the question is, if that is the case, aren`t there going to be lawsuits that say you cannot stop -- you cannot stop TPS because you don`t want people from these countries that you have labeled this?

So, I`m like how far does this go? Does this go all the way to the international court of hate of human rights? Does it end up in the Supreme Court? And if it ends up in the Supreme Court, yeah, right, what does that look like?

But I think that there are lawyers around the country right now who are figuring out what is the legal argument here. And this was created by Donald Trump.

REID: And I think about that because, Randall, you have Democrats saying, well, you know, we still need to get in the room and negotiate with Donald Trump as if that`s the only way to stop his reversals of TPS of El Salvadorans and Haitians, if it`s the only way to stop him from sending 800,000 DACA recipients home. But it does feel like there are other alternatives.

With the Muslim ban, his animus towards Muslims that he showed in his tweets was the way to go legally and go through the courts to stop him, and it does feel like there are other measures here. You have not just Donald Trump, but the existence on his staff of people like Steven Miller who have passed instances of racial animus.

I`m looking here, and I keep thinking about this essay by Michael Anton, employed by the taxpayers, working for the administration, who when he was a blogger under this Publius (inaudible) name, wrote "the ceaseless importation of third world foreigners with no tradition of taste for or experience in liberty means that the electorate grows more left, more Democratic, less Republican and less traditionally American every cycle. If people like that work for Donald Trump, why is there not a case being made that this is akin to the Muslim ban? Stop him in the courts."

PINKETT: Yeah, I agree. And you Maria make a great point.

I think it`s time for a Schumer and Pelosi and the Democrats to really rethink their strategy. You know, up until now to your point I think there has been this dance that`s gone on with the administration, do we want to work together, do we want to go against it? And we know how they treated Obama.

REID: Correct.

PINKETT: They were clear from day one, our agenda is to shut down everything this guy does. I think the Democrats have to dig in and say are there more sophisticated ways, whether it`s legal, whether it`s the courts that can begin to pry away if not shut down what he`s trying to do because there are some real legal challenges, which we`ve talked about.

REID: Yeah, and at the same time just in your reporting, Maria, because there`s also a real world rebound to this inside of these communities that are watching this president speak in this way. They`re getting a very clear message.

HINOJOSA: So, the words I`m focusing on actually three words, take them out. Everybody is focusing on these other two words. I`m focusing on when he said take them out. Because what that means is sending a signal clearly to the agents on the ground to go and do this. So that is the part where, you know, your heart is clenching, but Joy, today, I got a delivery in Harlem and I asked the driver. I said where you from? He said, I`m from Senegal. I said how you feeling? He`s like I know I`m like I`m Mexican, I know. It`s like.

And I I said but you`ve got American. U.S. born children. He goes, oh, yes. And I said, and what -- he said they are going to become lawmakers.

REID: Yeah.

HINOJOSA: So all of this, you know, is going to come back and we don`t know how and it`s very scary and it`s very upsetting, but this is setting in motion things that we can`t even see for the next, let`s say, nine months.

REID: Absolutely, and for the self-interest of Republicans that they clearly can`t see. You`ve now had -- and Puerto Ricans insulted can come to Florida and vote. You have people of African descent can vote. You have voters that actually can respond to this as well.

Maria Hinojosa and Randall Pinkett, I believe I am out of time. Thank you for joining me.

That is All In for this evening.



Copy: Content and programming copyright 2018 MSNBC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Copyright 2018 ASC Services II Media, LLC. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of ASC Services II Media, LLC. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.