Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES Date: October 23, 2018 Guest: Amanda Terkel, Ryan Costello, Ro Khanna, Janai Nelson, Dale Ho
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST: Commander-in-Chief who speaks as if it never mattered. To whom a nuclear arms race is a test of his macho and how much money he has to put on the table. What will a man with that kind of attitude do in a nuclear crisis? And that`s HARDBALL for now. "ALL IN" with Chris Hayes starts right now.
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CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: But they have a word. It sort of became old-fashioned. It`s called a nationalist.
HAYES: The President outs himself.
TRUMP: We`re not supposed to use that word. You know what I am, I`m a nationalist.
HAYES: As the campaign of fear continues.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Undefended open borders.
HAYES: Tonight, beyond the scare tactics with what`s working on the ground.
ANDREW GILLUM (D), GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE, FLORIDA: We`re going to show them on November 6th that they have played their hand the wrong way.
HAYES: Plus, debate night in Georgia and the Republican candidate caught on tape.
BRIAN KEMP (R), GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE, GEORGIA: Something that continues to concern us.
HAYES: And amid right-wing Caravan fever --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Soros question mark.
HAYES: The terrorism investigation into a bomb left at the home of George Soros when ALL IN starts right now.
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HAYES: Good evening from New York I`m Chris Hayes. There are now just two weeks until the midterms and Americans are engaged like they never have been before. In Florida, voters camped out to be among the first to cast early votes. In Nevada, they showed up at early voting sites in record- breaking numbers. And in many counties in Texas, they cast more votes on the first day of early voting for a Midterm Election than they did two years ago for a presidential one.
And as a GOP works desperately to hang on to Congress, the man whose beliefs carry arguably more weight within the party than nearly anyone is trying to ride to the rescue. I speak of course of Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson whose company got a $1.2 billion windfall from the Republican tax cut and who has the President of the United States working as his personal lobbyist as he tries to build a new casino in Japan. He is seeking to protect his investment.
Adelson and his wife Miriam adding $25 million to their Midterm campaign spending bringing their total spending to boost Republicans in this cycle alone to an astounding $113 million, a super PAC they support is even running ads on this very network. Now, that money is being used to stoke fear and resentment in an effort to inflame the Republican base and keep the party that delivered Adelson the billion-dollar windfall firmly entrenched in power.
Republicans are reveling in the effectiveness of their fear-mongering. Barry Bennett former Trump campaign official describing the migrant caravan that Donald Trump has been relentlessly focusing on and blatantly lying about as a "political gift." Get this, Bennet telling the Washington Post " I wish they were carrying heroin." The GOP strategy of stoking fear and racial resentment among white voters in an effort to hold on to power comes as two southern states Georgia and Florida may be on the verge of electing their first ever black governors in Democrat Stacey Abrams and Andrew Gillum.
In Georgia, as we`ll discuss later in the show, Secretary State and GOP Gubernatorial Nominee Brian Kemp who has been accused of trying to suppress black voter turnout and is in charge of the state`s voting system was caught on tape voicing concerns that Abrams voters will exercise their rights and vote. And in Florida, some voters received an incredibly racist robocall from someone pretending to be Gillum. A warning, what you`re about to hear is wildly offensive.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, hello there. I is the Negro Andrew Gillum, and I`ll be asking you to make me Governor of this state of Florida. My esteem opponent who don`t call me monkey is doing a lot of hollering about expensive my plans for health care be.
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HAYES: Appearing on MSNBC late this afternoon, Gillum said the people who recorded the ad and are take -- are taking their cues straight from top Republicans including his opponent Ron DeSantis.
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GILLUM: Leadership starts at the top. When Mr. DeSantis became his party`s nominee, went on Fox News and told people now to monkey up the state by electing me, a phrase that I`ve -- it`s not commonly used so far as I know, certainly not a month`s any of the circles that I`m in, and quite frankly I think people are taking their cues there. What I think they ought to do is quite frankly stop the dog whistles, stop the bullhorns, the attacks on me, the false ads that are being running are all intended to quite frankly further a stereotype about black men, illegal, unethical, take things for free, monkey it up, jungle animals. I mean, those kinds of things. It`s not hard to understand why neo-Nazis would take an extension of that and then take it to the next level of extremity.
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HAYES: With me now Huffington Post Washington Bureau Chief Amanda Terkel who`s been reporting on the origins of that racist robocall today. Amanda, what are they?
AMANDA TERKEL, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, HUFFINGTON POST: Well, it`s a neo- Nazi group or a guy who basically has a podcast and a Web site called the road to power and they`re based in Idaho so they are not even in Florida. But this guy Scott Rhodes is known for doing these sorts of robocalls in other states too. He`s done it in Iowa, Idaho, California, Oregon, Virginia, and some other places and he`s done it against Andrew Gillum before. He did a similar one when Andrew Gillum was running for the Democratic nomination and it`s incredibly racist.
I mean, you know, I couldn`t believe what I was hearing when I first heard this robocall. You have sort of music in the background from Amos and Andy which was a controversial popular but relied on racist stereotypes of T.V. show, and you have the monkey sound, you have this exaggerated dialect, and it just -- you know, parts you didn`t play, parts about Jews trying to elect Andrew Gillum, it`s just horrifying. And now you even have the governor of Idaho coming out and saying we don`t want this in our state either.
HAYES: Ron DeSantis I`m sure has condemned this, right?
TERKEL: The DeSantis campaign did condemn it. They said we have nothing to do with it. We don`t like this. But as you -- as you played the audio or the video earlier, Gilliam said and he was right that DeSantis the day after the Florida primaries said that Gillum is basically monkeying up this race and that is a very racist dog whistle. And so that comment was alluded to in this racist robocall as well.
HAYES: They actually referenced that line.
TERKEL: Yes, they actually referenced that line in the robocall so it`s being used by this neo-Nazi group.
HAYES: It strikes me -- I mean, is it -- how easy is it to hire up a robocall?
TERKEL: It`s really easy and a lot of -- a lot of basically racists or crazy people are people who just don`t want their identities known often do this because it`s easier to be a little more anonymous. This group actually did have a disclaimer at the end saying it was paid for by the Road To Power which is this Web site in this podcast. So it was easier to find out who did it. And this group is it`s pretty well known for doing this.
HAYES: It also comes in the context of just an incredibly racialized campaign being run increasingly from the top on down.
TERKEL: Oh absolutely. I mean, obviously with Trump you have what he`s been saying lately about the caravan and immigration and I mean it`s not just lately but it`s been ramping up in recent weeks because that`s what happens when you have a close election and you don`t like the issues that people say they care about, things like health care. Those issues aren`t great so Trump is fear-mongering about the caravan and other things like that. But throughout this campaign, you`re seeing racist attacks across the country especially against candidates of color. Andrew Gillum has faced other things, memes about his race, a congressman said he`s Andrew Killum because he said he was soft on crime so this is happening everywhere.
HAYES: All right, Amanda Terkel, thank you very much for being with me. For more the Midterms, I`m joined by two members of the House of Representatives, Democrat Ro Khanna who is up for re-election in California 17th District in two weeks and Republican Ryan Costello of Pennsylvania who`s getting the hell out of there retiring at the end of his term. So I want to -- well, let me start with you actually. If I say to you what is this election about in two weeks, what`s your answer?
REP. RO KHANNA (D), CALIFORNIA: It`s about a check on executive power. We need a check on Donald Trump. And it`s about the economy. We need people who are working Americans to do better. They haven`t been gotten anything under Donald Trump.
HAYES: How about -- what`s your answer that?
REP. RYAN COSTELLO (R), PENNSYLVANIA: Are we better off than we were two years ago? Is the country moving in the right direction from a job creation and an economic growth perspective? And are we willing to give Republicans a continued chance to govern out of the House notwithstanding the fact that there are frustrations with the way that the President communicates
HAYES: Right. So that`s a perfectly decent but there is -- I can`t find a 30-second ad being run on those issues. I mean, honestly, it is -- it seems to me an incredible condemnation of the Republican record that every ad is about -- it`s about the caravan, it`s about MS-13, it`s about the Democrats are going to let the mob get after you and there`s precious little you can find on anything having to do with the record of Republican.
COSTELLO: Look, I think that it`s for whatever reason, the strategic decisions being made are we need to get our base out when from my perspective is it would seem to me that the base in large measure should be happy with the types of policies that the president has been espousing and in the districts that we need to keep suburban Minneapolis, suburban California, we should be layering on top of that a more centrist message.
KHANNA: The reality is most Americans aren`t happy and that`s why the President is doing this. It`s out of weakness. And the President had a winning hand. If he really thought that Americans were doing better, he`d run on that, but he`s stuck in the 40 percent in his polls and so he`s -- this is desperation. He`s clinging to power. I think it`s going to backfire because most Republicans are reasonable like Ryan. I mean, they actually believe in evidence, the reason, you can actually debate with Ryan, we do bills, we disagree. That`s what most people believe in. This is --
COSTELLO: It goes to say that (INAUDIBLE) win the debate. But also the point --
HAYES: You two are both saying the same thing which I think is wrong. You guys are both saying that -- you guys are both saying that the strategic decision that`s been made is incorrect. The strategic decision which we all agree on which is clear is get the base riled up with really nasty stuff. I mean, really, honestly. The way -- you know, lying about there are terrorist infiltrating the caravan completely baseless stuff. They think that will work. You both don`t think it does but what if it does? What does it say?
COSTELLO: But the caveat here is that I believe the President in large measure is campaigning for the United States Senate not for House races. And if you look in North Dakota, in Indiana, in Missouri and a few others, Montana, they love them there or at least it`s above 50 percent.
HAYES: But what does that say? What does that say to you? They love the fact that he`s lying and saying that there are Middle Eastern terrorist --
COSTELLO: Well, the voters of those states get to do -- choose what they - - what they support and what they don`t but if -- look, in my district, having the President in to campaign for me this year if I were running would not be a good recipe.
HAYES: Would be bad. Yes, right.
KHANNA: And his tactics are not original. I mean, people lying to hold on to power is as old as politics itself.
HAYES: Yes, that`s true.
KHANNA: And you know, at some point you have to believe in the common sense and decency of Americans. Eventually, they`ll get it right. And what we can`t do is get distracted. Look, remember he`s at 45 percent. The majority of Americans don`t believe in his tactics.
HAYES: What I thought was such a tell was this ridiculous. First of all, the lies have been sort of like some have been really nasty, some have been hilarious, like the idea that there`s riots happening in California that just like no one`s seen. Like oh yes, there`s -- like the President of the United States just casually being like get to the riots in California. You know it obviously. But I thought the rolling out a fictitious middle-class tax cut was such a tell, right? Because what that says to me is you don`t trust the thing you passed. You guys passed it. You walked the plank for it. You voted for that bill.
COSTELLO: I voted. We were on last week. We had a good conversation about that.
HAYES: Right. So you voted that bill. What does it say to you that he comes and he invents a new middle-class tax cut which is not happening which is totally fictitious two weeks before Election Day because he clearly thinks the first one didn`t work?
COSTELLO: I don`t know what to make of a fictitious tax cut. I can`t help you on that one.
KHANNA: Well, I mean, he knows.
COSTELLO: Will you vote the fictitious tax cut?
KHANNA: Well, if he had -- if he had a tax initially to help working families, that`s what a lot of us wanted. We wanted the earned income credit to be expanded. That`s what Kamala Harris has proposed but the President knows he didn`t do that. And he did attached it for his donors, now that it`s election time he thinks he can pull the wall over folks eyes and it`s not going to work.
HAYES: There`s another -- there`s another theme that`s been emerging here. This is the pre-existing condition issue. I want to play -- Rick Scott is now the latest -- Republicans is very much on the defensive about pre- existing conditions largely because of a lawsuit that would end them if it was successful and also the vote on ObamaCare repeal. This is what Rick Scott had to say. Take a listen.
Yes, sorry this is Rick Scott as he say, he support forcing insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions. Just supposed to be there. This has been a theme Republicans trying to get right with the American people on this even when they`ve supported things that would change protection for a pre-existing condition.
COSTELLO: Correct. Well, correct in the sense that that`s the campaign issue. I think -- I voted against the health care bill on the floor. The pre-existing conditions coverage I think at this point in time, nobody can be against. I think that the question that`s being litigated is whether those who voted to allow a state to waive that in certain circumstances if there was a state stability fund set up in order to provide the alternative cover. We`re going to talk about health care policy, we`re going to get end up getting in the weeds.
COSTELLO: That`s what will ultimately get litigated, very difficult to litigate health care policy and 30-second political commercials.
KHANNA: But Chris, this is what Democrats need to run on. Everyone --
HAYES: They are.
KHANNA: And we shouldn`t get distracted with the -- with the sidetrack that Trump is trying to do. He knows health care is a losing issue for him. He knows people`s deductibles have gone up, premiums have gone going up, they aren`t getting coverage and we`re winning on the health care debate.
HAYES: Let me -- let me bring up one more issue that no one is running on but might be one of the most important in the world just because I have you both here. There are millions of people in Yemen who are facing the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. We`re talking about millions of children who are at risk of starvation because of the U.S. and Saudi-led war in Yemen. Mohammed bin Salman who just apparently ordered the murder of the journalist has also been running this. You have a bill to stop U.S. support for Yemen. Tell me about it.
KHANNA: Well, Chris, I appreciate your bringing it up. You`re one the only mainstream journalists covering the issue. Let me just put it in perspective. There are 12 million Yemenis who faced the possibility of starvation. 800,000 people died in Rwanda, 100,000 died in Bosnia, the world`s worst famine in West Bengal over the last 100 years was 3 million. Here you have 12 million and the United States is supporting the Saudis in bombing those civilians and not allowing humanitarian aid. Regardless of the politics we should demand a cessation to the violence and let aid get in there.
HAYES: This doesn`t strike me as particularly partisan issue. Is that something that you could see yourself supporting other Republicans?
COSTELLO: Well, I could and I will just add to that. There are a number of hot spots around the globe that because of the way that campaigns are run now we don`t focus on and we don`t have the ability to lean in on them and inform our constituents on the types of things that we`re working on so I applaud your leadership.
KHANNA: And I like Ryan. Look, this is how politics used to be. Ryan and I disagree but he believes in evidence, facts, and it`s a shame that the President is distorting the campaign so you don`t have this --
HAYES: Well, the President said he`s willing to leave punishment of the Saudi situation up to Congress. It strikes me that the lame-duck session, I think there`s probably -- you know, lame-duck session, I think he can get 235, 240 votes to end the U.S.-backed war in Yemen. I hope so. Representatives Ro Khanna and Ryan Costello, thank you both for being with me. Let`s do it again. It was fun. All right, next, it`s debate night in Georgia. We`ll show you what happened when Stacey Abrams and Brian Kemp go head-to-head in two minutes.
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STACEY ABRAMS (D), GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE, GEORGIA: -- Undersecretary Kemp, more people have lost the right to vote in the State of Georgia. They`ve been purged, they`ve been suppressed, and they`ve been scared. This is a man who had someone arrested for helping her blind father cast a ballot. He raided the offices of organizations to stop them from registering voters. That type of voter suppression feeds the narrative because voter suppression isn`t only about blocking the vote, it`s also about creating an atmosphere of fear, making people worry that their votes won`t count.
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HAYES: Tonight in Georgia, an election that is effectively deadlocked. Stacey Abrams, the Democrat you saw there running to become the first African-American female governor in American history faced off in a debate with Republican Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Abrams is currently suing Kemp for suppressing votes in the election that he is both running in and overseeing. Kemp for his part is well aware that African-American and minority turnout is a problem for him. He voiced his concerns over Abrams voters outreach to donors at an event last week. A recording of that event was given to Rolling Stone Reporter Jamil Smith who posted it online hours before tonight`s debate.
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KEMP: As worried as we were going into the start of early voting, with the literally tens of millions of dollars that they are putting behind the get out and vote efforts for their base, a lot of that was absentee ballot requests they had just an unprecedented number of that works is something that continues to concern us especially if everybody uses and exercises their right to vote which they absolutely can. And mails those ballots in, we got to have heavy turnout to offset that.
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HAYES: Kemp`s campaign today confirmed he was at the event and leave no comment on the remarks. Tonight, the issue of election integrity was central to the debate.
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KEMP: As you know in a recent video you called on illegals to vote for you in this election. I was actually shocked I had to watch that video twice. So my question is why are you encouraging people to break the law for you in this election?
ABRAMS: Mr. Kemp, you are very aware that I know the laws of Georgia when it comes to voting. In fact, I am one of the foremost experts in the state on expansion of voting rights and I have never in my life asked for anyone who is not legally eligible to vote to be able to cast a ballot. What I`ve asked for is that you allow those who are legally eligible to vote to allow them to cast their ballots. And in fact, we took you to court in 2016 and a federal judge said that you illegally canceled 34,000 registrations. You use the exact same system, the exact match system that is under dispute right now.
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HAYES: To talk more about those race, I`m joined by Janai Nelson Associate Director and Counsel to NAACP Legal Defense Fund and Dale Ho Director of the ACLU`s Voting Rights Project. What`s -- so there`s a policy thing happening here in Georgia. There`s a -- there`s a fascinating kind of personal story here which is that like these two people have been facing off on this issue way before this election happened.
JANAI NELSON, ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR AND COUNSEL, NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE FUND: That`s right.
NELSON: That`s right. It`s been a really interesting dance leading up to this election where you have the person who`s been in charge of elections for years now being a candidate and reaping the benefits of all of the manipulation and all of the voter suppression that he`s engaged in four years. Since 2012 he`s been responsible, Brian Kemp, for one point four million registration cancellations. And most recently we found out that there were voter purges just last year after he announced his candidacy and we have voters who were removed from the rolls. He`s effectively choosing the people who are able to participate in a select and choosing the voters who may ultimately elect him or his opponent into the gubernatorial office.
HAYES: What does the law say about what you can and can`t get away with? I mean, the finessing thing about voting rights right in the history of the country is that they`re constantly since the period after reconstruction they`re shot through with bad faith right so all of the efforts to suppress the vote particularly the south after reconstruction are facially race- neutral right, like oh, take a literacy test, like oh we`re going to close a polling place here. They knew what they were doing right?
So the question now becomes like what can you do and not do if you say oh we`re going to purge a million people, you can get away with that purge, four million people, like what is the standard?
DALE HO, DIRECTOR, ACLU VOTING RIGHTS PROJECT: Well, a lot of what Brian Kemp has done is illegal. We`re challenging a number of his practices. The danger here is that it takes time to litigate these cases, right? And if we can`t get relief in the courts before the election, it`s too late. There`s no way to redo the election and get people`s voting rights back before November.
HAYES: Right. So the remedy there is you know, one gets to say like get the other person elected.
NELSON: But there`s a reason that Georgia was once covered by Section Five of the Voting Rights Act that we know the Supreme Court basically eviscerated in 2013 in the Shelby County versus Holder decision. And the reason that that law was so effective and in place was because of places like Georgia that routinely engages in voter suppression. And therefore, were required to present any change like the purging of 100,000 voters or the changing of polling sites or the cancellation of registrations. They had to present those changes to the federal government for clearance.
HAYES: Is it -- just to be clear, that`s all stuff that would have to go through preclearance?
NELSON: That`s right.
HAYES: If you purge voters?
NELSON: Yes. If you change the rules and you -- if you`re just doing routine voter list maintenance, that`s one thing, but if you are changing the rules that effect who gets to stay on the rolls and who doesn`t, that`s a change. If you are engaged in the cancellation of registrations based on a new rule that you`ve put into place then you would need to seek some sort of preclearance.
HO: There are still opportunities to get emergency relief. Lawyers from the ACLU and the ACLU of Georgia, the Legal Director of the ACLU of Georgia Sean Young was in court today arguing that what Georgia is doing throwing away absentee ballots, you heard Brian Kemp complain that there are too many people casting absentee ballots, that`s like the head of the IRS complaining they`re too many people I don`t know, paying their taxes. But we were in court today on an emergency motion to stop the state from throwing away absentee ballots without first verifying that those ballots were in fact legitimately cast by voters.
HAYES: There`s also the question about this sort of conflict of interest that hangs over all this and one of the moments in the debate tonight he said he had no plans if there were a recount, he had no plans to recuse himself from a recount which just I think strikes everyone as kind of a little weird like you`re going to oversee the recount?
NELSON: Yes. I mean if, Kris Kobach is besting you in this area then you`ve got a problem. I mean, he really should commit ahead of the election to assure voters to instill some sense of security and integrity in the process. To say if there is a recount, I will recuse myself. Frankly, we demanded the Legal Defense Fund sent a letter last week demanding that he step away voluntarily from supervising the elections. It doesn`t mean he has to necessarily abdicate his office entirely, but in terms of his responsibilities concerning the Georgia elections, the idea that he is still in charge of that process is absurd in any other circumstance. We would see this as a clear conflict of interest and an invitation for self-dealing.
HAYES: Is Georgia -- I mean, Kansas, obviously Kris Kobach is notorious. I wonder is Georgia out of line with other states or is it just the fact that Brian Kemp is running that has put the spotlight on him?
HO: Brian Kemp has I think pretty bad history when it comes to suppressing votes. What I -- what I was -- when I was asked about Brian Kemp before, you know, is he you know, doing something new, what I`d say is he`s not doing something new but he`s using every old trick in the book and that`s what`s kind of unique about him. He doesn`t just champion sort of one restriction on voting the way Kris Kobach for instance with his proof of citizenship law, Brian Kemp has got a strict voter I.D. law.
He`s got purges for not voting, something that the Supreme Court, unfortunately, upheld in a case coming out of Ohio the other year. He has this exact match program which Stacey Abrams challenged and that was apparently back online and then now he`s got this system of rejecting absentee ballots based on someone`s eyeball test of whether or not the signature appears to match someone`s voter registration.
HAYES: That`s what they`re using right now?
HO: That`s what we were in court today challenging. Several hundred ballots have already been rejected or ballot requests have been rejected in Florida -- in Georgia, I`m sorry. The number is expected to go up as we get closer to Election Day based on just an eyeball test that someone`s signature on their absentee ballot or their ballot request doesn`t look like the voter registration form. All we`re asking for is that those voters get notified and have a chance to say don`t throw my ballot away, that was me.
HAYES: That seems like a fair pass. Janai Nelson and Dale Ho, thank you for joining us.
NELSON: Thank you.
HAYES: Ahead, following countless right-wing conspiracy theories targeting philanthropist George Soros. This week someone appeared to hand-deliver a pipe bomb to his home. The details next.
HAYES: In the world of the American right and even the national right, billionaire philanthropist George Soros is the secret puppet master of world affairs.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Soros has given about $10 million to groups opposed to the policies of Israel.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do not want a second referendum, Mr. Soros.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s not the people`s vote, it`s the George Soros vote is how I would put it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is such a person in the United States, Mr. Soros who interferes in affairs all over the world.
TRUMP: Did you ever see their signs resist? They say what are you going to resist, I don`t know. They`ll go to a person holding a sign who gets paid by Soros or somebody, right. That`s what happens.
ANNOUNCER: Left wing mobs paid to riot in the streets.
Billionaire George Soros bankrolls the resistance and Dan Fian (ph). Fian (ph) is employed by a Soros funded liberal outfit in D.C. His campaign propped up by out of state super PACs backed by Soros`s millions.
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HAYES: Trump says Soros and other paid for the Kavanaugh protesters. Congressman Matt Gates claimed cash payments to the migrant caravan suggesting Soros was behind it.
And in the midst of this rhetoric, which constant on the right, a bomb was found in the mailbox of George Soros`s suburban New York yesterday. It was detonated by bomb squad technicians. Soros was not home at the time.
An employee had opened the suspicious package and alerted authorities. The FBI joint terrorism task force and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms are now investigating.
Angelo Carusone is the president of Media Matters. And Angelo, welcome.
So, let me start with this. I mean, let me say this, it is the case that George Soros does fund lots of causes on the sort of progressive and the center left. At one time I think he made a donation to Media Matters years ago. He funds lots of different organizations.
There`s a distinction between him being a funder and the caricature and image of him in the right wing media.
ANGELO CARUSONE, MEDIA MATTERS: Yeah, but I mean, it`s not what he does that makes him a target of this. And obviously the fact that he`s putting so much money in makes him a target. But there`s nothing inherent about him except for the fact that he has a background, right, that he`s both Jewish, so it fits into a lot of anti-Semitic narratives that they can tie into. And he operates on a global scale, right, so they can weave in a conspiratorial nature.
But if George Soros wasn`t doing what he was doing or didn`t exist, they would have another individual that they would prop up as their centralizing figure. Before Soros, it was the Rothchilds. I mean, still see the Rothchilds mentioned in the context of George Soros.
So part of this is to understand how Soros sort of fits into the larger right-wing narrative and then how that leads into, say, the bomb being delivered to his house.
HAYES: Yeah, I mean, it`s also an international narrative, as you saw from Putin.
I mean, in Hungary, his native Hungary, there`s a Stop Soros law against NGOs that help migrants that is proposed by the ultra right-wing Viktor Orban government in Hungary.
CARUSONE: Yes. And the one thing that I point out internationally is that the countries where -- that have the most explicit hostility toward Mr. Soros or his foundations and their activities send to be either authoritarian or moving into authoritarian territory, because a lot of work that he does is fund and support democratic movements, right, open societies, societies in which there are transparency, in which there`s accountability on the government`s part to its people, and so there`s a natural tension there because his activities directly undermine or run against either explicit authoritarian regimes or the creep in movement toward authoritarianism.
HAYES: And, in fact, there`s a sort of tragic irony here. This is someone who has sort of experienced childhood experience of surviving the holocaust, family being murdered and escaping has led him to fund and invest in sort of liberal democracy and institutions that support it at a time when there`s a movement both in the United States and Hungary and elsewhere in Europe against it.
CARUSONE: That`s correct. And I think that the one thing that they`ve done really effectively, and it sort of makes it both really sad and kind of sick, but it also is a testament to the agenda setting and persuasive power that the right-wing echo chamber, not just here but globally, can use is they can actually turn somebody with his background who as a child in the Nazi regime and portray him as a Nazi, as a Nazi collaborator.
And that`s actually a really important thing that they do, because one of the ways -- they don`t just say he`s supporting all these things. That`s not the story that the right-wing tells their audiences. That`s not what makes somebody want to go and bring a pipe bomb or governments to crack down on him, what they do is say he is sporting all these things because he has horrible ends. They actually portray him as the ultimate authoritarian figure. And that is a hallmark of the societies, right, is to have to have a sort of vague fear of violence or threats against you, it`s all manufactured, and you sort of create a new villain that you turn your people against, and that is largely how Soros kind of fits in here.
He is the perfect straw man for so much of the worst impulses of authoritarian movements and right-wing movements.
HAYES: Yeah, our own Ben Collins who monitors this kind of thing posted a screen shot of our "the Donald" where you`ve got just in the last week multiple people calling for him to be killed, violence against him.
I should read the statement from the Open Society Foundation, the politics of hate that dominates our discourse today in the U.S. and so many countries around the world breed extremism and violence. In this climate of fear, falsehoods and rising authoritarianism just voicing your views can draw death threats. George Soros deplores violence of any kind and urges politicians across the political spectrum to tone down the rhetoric."
I am a little surprised that an apparent assassination attempt on George Soros, or a bomb at his house, hasn`t been a bigger issue.
CARUSONE: I am surprised by that, but I`m not surprised that -- a little surprised. I thought for sure this would maybe sort of shock the mainstream media into thinking about it differently. A lot of times when they cover it, they cover it in ways that actually reinforce right wing myths about him or false equivalencies, right. They portray him as, oh, he`s just the liberal analog to the Koch brothers, which is entirely incorrect.
And that`s how they kind of dismiss it. They only look at it through a very narrow, partisan political lens. And they ignore both the global context as well as the culture context that`s at play here. And the fact that the attacks against him are representative of the fact that part of the right-wing narrative is -- and the violence that it leads to is a feature, not a bug, it`s not an anomaly.
HAYES: Angelo Carusone, thank you very much.
Still ahead, the inevitable Republican bait and switch of campaign style fear mongering that disappears right after the election.
Plus, presidential math in tonight`s Thing One, Thing Two next.
HAYES: Thing One tonight, when it comes to Trump and Saudi Arabia, the policy is the customer is always right which is why President Trump seems to be overcompensating lately when it comes to talking up the number of jobs that are supposedly going to be created by these arms deals that we`ve got.
Now, the original deal was supposedly going to create 40,000 jobs, then Trump made it bigger.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I worked very hard to get the order for the military. It`s $110 billion. I believe it`s the largest order ever made. It`s 450,000 jobs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: OK. Now two things here, the $110 billion number itself we know to be an exaggeration. But 450,000 jobs? Now that is a lot of jobs, although I think it might sound a little better if you rounded up a bit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: They have a tremendous order, $110 billion. Every country in the world wanted a piece of that order. I mean, it`s 500,000 jobs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: 500,000 jobs, or up to 500,000 jobs.
Nothing has changed about the deal, of course, but in two days we somehow went up 50,000 more jobs.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We have $450 billion worth of things ordered for a very rich country, Saudi Arabia, 600,000 jobs, maybe more than that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HYAES: 600,000. Do I hear 600,000? And now it`s a $450 billion deal. Every time this guy talks, the numbers go up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: This is equipment and various things ordered from Saudi Arabia, $450 million. I think it`s over a million jobs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
This is kind of not even funny anymore.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I think that`s over a million jobs, a million to over a million.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: OK, yes, yeah. A million to over a million jobs, sure.
You ever notice that there is -- if there is a sentence with a number in it, Trump cannot complete that sentence without raising the number. That`s Thing Two, or maybe three, or maybe even more than -- more than that in 60 seconds.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Donald Trump has been inflating numbers as long as anyone has been paying tension to him, from his net worth, to his crowd sizes, to the jobs created by Saudi arms deals.
But to the close observer, the behavior seems to be more pathological. It seems that with the exception of golf scores and official weight, whenever Trump see as number he needs to make it bigger.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We`ve created almost 500,000, soon it`s going to be 600,000, manufacturing jobs.
We had vets that used to wait in line for seven days, 20 days, 30 days. I`ve heard up to 38 days.
Two days, five days, 20 days, 30 days, 50 days.
To build a highway in this country would take 17, 18, 20 and even 21 years.
You could have lost 30, 40, 50 million people.
401(k)s are up 30, 40 and in some cases much higher than that percent.
What they have 90, they have 92 and they have 93 percent.
They have massive tariffs on us, 50 percent, in one case 100 percent, in some cases more than that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: So two world leaders spoke out today about the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi operatives with very differing results. Turkish President Recep Erdogan who himself, we should note, has a terrible record of press freedom, called Khashoggi`s death inside a Saudi consulate in Istanbul, quote, a vicious murder. Adding, quote, "whitewashing such barbarity will, of course, injure and wound the conscious of all humanity."
And to hammer that point home, Turkey leaked security footage of a man they say wore Khashoggi`s clothes around Istanbul in order to make it look the Washington Post columnist was still alive.
Now, Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman seemed undeterred by this, walking into an investment conference in Riyadh to a standing ovation and later taking selfies with attendees.
Not to mention, photos released by the Saudi press agency members of the royal family meeting with the son of the man the Saudi officials murdered.
Erdogan wasn`t the only one with something to say today. After repeatedly bending over backwards to find excuses for the Saudis, Donald Trump finally seemed upset, but maybe not for the reason you`d think.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: They had a very bad original concept. It was carried out poorly and the cover-up was one of the worst in the history of cover-ups. It`s very simple. Bad deal, should have never been thought of.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Speaking later in the day, the president clarified that, yes, the brutal murder itself was bad, not just the cover-up, before adding, yet again, that the crown prince, quote, "strongly denied" being involved.
HAYES: In the last few weeks before the 2014 elections, the mid-term conversation was dominated by one subject: Ebola It seems absurd, but it was.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: A lot of people are fleeing West Africa and they`re coming here because they want to get away from Ebola Now, how many of those people have Ebola? And it`s going to be a problem. And I cannot understand why we`re allowing so many people. We should end flights coming from West Africa and Liberia.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Republicans like Scott Brown who was attempting to get into the Senate stoked fears that terrorists could use Ebola as a sort of biological weapon.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCOTT BROWN, FORMER GOVERNOR OF MASSACHUSETTS: I think it`s naive to think that people aren`t going to be walking through here who have those types of diseases and/or other types of intent, criminal or terrorist, and yet we do nothing to secure our border.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Just think for a second about that, that you would go and get Ebola and then come over and sneak across the border as a biological attack.
And yet after the midterms, coverage of Ebola disappeared, because it was never a real issue here for Republicans, and the right-wing outreach machine is now gearing up again, this time over the so-called caravan just in time for the mid-term elections.
Here to help me understand why this artificial conservative outreach can happen, Washington Post columnist and MSNBC contributor Jennifer Rubin, GOP strategist Rick Wilson, and Christina Greer, associate professor of political scientist at Fordham University.
And Christina, I`ll start with you. One thing we know, in study after study is that when you make people feel scared or under threat or threat of invasion, their politics get more conservative. It`s like a tried and true, like, everyone -- liberals, conservatives, everyone.
And it just seems so obvious what is being done here. They did with Ebola, and they`re just directing attention to it now.
CHRISTINA GREER, FORDHAM UNIVERSITY: Well, we have to look at the past two years of this particular administration. Trump has not promised his base the signature piece of legislation, which is this wall.
GREER: And so to deflect from that, right -- and he keeps talking about the economy. It`s Obama`s economy. He is not talking about the tax breaks because we know that there is not going to be any money for regular people, it`s just going to be for his friends. So, he is talking now about all this caravan and all these people coming. They`re 1,100 miles away, right.
And the reason why the caravan is in place is because you, sir, have closed our borders and put children in cages. And so the problem is we have one party, the Democrats, who see this as essentially a humanitarian disaster. We have the Republicans, oftentimes who don`t even see these children and these families as human, and they`re saying you know these are the people who are going to come to our summer homes when we`re not there and sets up shop and take over.
HAYES: Let me read the quote that you`re referencing. This is an interview, Carol Shields, 75, a Republican in northern Minnesota said she was afraid that migrant gangs could take over people`s summer lake homes in the state of Minnesota. "What`s to stop them, said Shields, a retired accountant. We have a lot of people who live on the lakes in summer and some place else. When they come back in the spring, their house will be occupied."
I don`t think that will happen.
Jennifer, part of it, too, is just the shamelessness. Like they don`t care -- no one cares. This is all just a point and look situation, and the president realizes -- and I think Bill Shine, who is there helping him -- realizes he can direct the media`s attention to what he wants it directed at.
JENNIFER RUBIN, WASHINGTON POST: That`s right. The lies come faster, and they get bigger and weirder. Just like he said there was a tax cut coming the following week after he appeared with Ted Cruz. This is nonsense. This is lies.
And you point to the nub of the problem and that is that there is a universe of people who live within this bubble, whether it`s talk radio, whether it`s Fox News, whether it`s blogs, whether it`s Breitbart, and that`s all they hear. And they`re more than willing to believe whatever told to them. They exercise no independent judgment.
And this White House -- listen, all presidents shade the truth. They exaggerate. They leave things out. But this is really the first president who makes things up out of whole cloth.
HAYES: Not all presidents just invent riots in California.
And Rick, part of -- I think part of the awareness that happened, right, in the Republican primary was this awareness among Republican politicians and operatives that a huge part of their base were ingesting brain poison every day, and that they had no -- they couldn`t interrupt the circuitry to get in front of them and now that`s become a kind of national party phenomenon.
RICK WILSON, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Sure. The self-reinforcing cycle of, you know, what Fox is feeding these guys every day. You know, it always follows -- like you covered earlier, the arc of exaggeration always gets more and more lurid every day.
WILSON: So one day it`s going to be 500 refugees marching north. By the end of the week, it`s going to be the entire bin Laden family coming here with knives in their teeth to kill every American. The drama and the exaggeration and the constant drum-beating on this thing, it requires that they constantly stoke that fear center with more and more vivid imagery, and more and more terrifying claims.
This is an old story. We`ve seen this before how this plays out over and over again. And it gets Trump`s nativist base very, very excited every day. And they look at these people as less than human, and this is part of Trump coming out of the closet on being a full-on nationalist. And let`s not exaggerate the impact of that on these people. They believe that those folks are less than human, and they believe that they don`t deserve asylum. They believe that the kids in cages was a net benefit for this country.
HAYES: Yeah, I mean, there is interviews with people saying, like, why can`t we just shoot them, which...
GREER: And if they didn`t want their children taken away if them, they shouldn`t have come.
WILSON: Yeah, it`s crazy.
HAYES: There`s also -- what`s also bizarre about this is like there is this parallel universe happening in the campaign trail where if you go to every Democratic race, they`re like we`ll protect your health care. Like, it is so striking. I go to -- you look at ad after ad after ad. And you know New York 19 is a great example here, outside New York where it`s like the Republicans is like big city rapper Antonio Delgado. And Antonio Delgado is like preexisting conditions are important to me. And those are literally the two campaigns that are being run right now.
GREER: Right. Well, I mean, look at Stacey Abrams in Georgia, right, and you have got Brian Kemp who is slow motion stealing an election. She is talking about health care, and he is just making up whoppers.
And I think part of the frustration that so many Democrats feel -- because right now the Republicans are using this buzzword of civility, right, and the Democrats aren`t being civil. And we`re comparing like apples to steak, right. Democrats yelling at you while you`re eating in your ethnic restaurants saying shame on you for taking away our health care is not the same as pipe bombs and Tiki torches and Republicans actually wholesale threatening children, women, you know, and marginalized communities.
HAYES: There is also, Jennifer the fact that they told -- they sold themselves on the tax cut. They pulled the wool over their own eyes. They thought it was going to sell.
RUBIN: Yes. And they did the same with repealing Obamacare. They thought that was going to sell too.
Imagine, imagine that taking away health care and giving tax breaks to rich people is not popular with the American people.
But to go back to something Rick said, it`s not enough to have Hispanic people marching 1,100 miles from the border. They have to say that there are Middle Eastern people, meaning terrorism.
HAYES: Yeah, exactly. Gilding the lily.
RUBIN: Yes. So you just have to get more and more preposterous every day.
WILSON: So, yeah. By the end of it, the exaggerations always reach the most ludicrous end point. And I think the two campaigns, though, it`s a very telling thing. The Democrats, for once, rarely, you know, they are using the right messaging that actually is moving voters underneath this whole thing. The Republicans` campaign has become a base-only operation. Unless they have an area where they can turn up the base at 100 percent, they`re not going to do well.
HAYES: No. There is no...
WILSON: That`s why they`re doing this stuff that only speaks to the...
HAYES: There is no persuasion message right now.
Jennifer Rubin, Rick Wilson and Christina Greer, thanks for your time.
This is your Tuesday reminder. We have a new episode of our podcast up, and it`s about the growing popularity of Medicare for all and crucially what it would actually take, details wise, to make that happen.
This week`s guest, Abdul El-Sayed, his fascinating insight into the topic. Find it wherever you get your podcasts.
That is All In for this evening. The Rachel Maddow Show starts now.
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