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

Democratic clash over substance in first debates. TRANSCRIPT: 6/28/19, All In w/ Chris Hayes.

Guests: Tom Perez, Aimee Allison, Howard Dean, Dorian Warren, Corbin Trent,Maya Wiley

CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST:  The spin room is heaven.  That`s HARDBALL for the big week we just had.  Thanks for joining us.  "ALL IN" with Chris Hayes it starts right now.



SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  America does not want to witness a food fight, they want to know how we`re going to put food on their table.

HAYES:  Democrats vying to take on Trump make history.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  I`m still holding on to that torch.

HAYES:  Tonight, record viewer shift for the first Democratic debates of 2020.

PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  We should call out hypocrisy when we see it.

HAYES:  What we learned about where the candidates stand.


HAYES:  And what happens next with DNC chair Tom Perez.  Then --

HARRIS:  She was bused to school every day and that little girl was me.

HAYES:  The fallout from that Kamala Harris moment with Joe Biden.

BIDEN:  I never, never, never ever opposed voluntary busing.

HAYES:  The big takeaways from both nights.

WARREN:  What`s been missing is courage.

HAYES:  And why never-Trump former Republicans need to expect Democrats to act like Democrats.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Raise your hand if covered -- if your government plan would provide coverage for undocumented immigrants.

HAYES:  When ALL IN starts right now.


HAYES:  Good evening from New York I`m Chris Hayes.  The most-watched Democratic debate in history happened last night.  NBC News announcing that 18.1 million T.V. viewers watched the debate across MSNBC, NBC, and Telemundo, an additional nine million watched via live stream setting a new Democratic debate viewership record.

That follows a first night debate that also generated tremendous interest attracting more than 24 million combined viewers.  Now, going into these debates, there were some concerns that it would be a circus because there are so many candidates in the mix.  We really didn`t get a circus.

For the most part, over two nights we saw 20 candidates having genuine, at times spirited disagreements over substantive issues without blatantly making things up or throwing out belittling nicknames for the rivals, or bragging about the size of their hands.

It was a return to some semblance of seriousness and presidential politics.  And the size of the audience suggested crucially both an enormous enthusiasm to get rid of the current President Donald Trump and a real investment in the fights that are happening on the issues that matter from immigration, to health care, to civil rights.


BETO O`ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  We would not build walls.  We would not put kids in cages.  In fact, we would spare no expense to reunite the families that have been separated already --


O`ROURKE:  -- and we would not criminally prosecute any family who is fleeing violence and persecution --


JULIAN CASTRO (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  -- repeal of Section 1325.

O`ROURKE: We would make --

CASTRO:  Some of us on this stage have called to end that section, to terminate it.  Some like Congressman O`Rourke have not.  And I want to challenge all of the candidates to do that.

LESTER HOLT, MSNBC HOST:  Who here would abolish their private health insurance in favor of a government-run plan, just a show of hands to start out with?

WARREN:  I understand, there are a lot of politicians who say oh it`s just not possible, we just can`t do it, it have a lot of political reasons for this, what they`re really telling you is they just won`t fight for it.  Well, health care is a basic human right and I will fight for basic human rights.

HARRIS:  In this campaign, we`ve also heard and I`m going to now direct this at Vice President Biden.  I do not believe you are a racist, and I agree with you when you commit yourself to the importance of finding common ground.

But I also believe and it`s personal and I was actually very -- it was hurtful to hear you talk about the reputations of two United States senators who built their reputations and career on the segregation of race in this country.  And it was not only that but you also worked with them to oppose busing.

And you know there was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools and she was bused to school every day, and that little girl was me.  So I will tell you that on this subject, it cannot be an intellectual debate among Democrats.  We have to take it seriously.

Do you agree today that you were wrong to oppose busing in America then?  Do you agree?

BIDEN:  I did not oppose busing in America.  What I opposed is busing ordered by the Department of Education.  That`s what I opposed.

HARRIS:  Well, there was a failure of states to integrate public schools in America.  I was part of the second class to integrate, Berkeley California public schools almost two decades after Brown v Board of Education.

BIDEN:  Because your City Council made that decision.  It was a local decision.

HARRIS:  So that`s where the federal government must step in.  That`s why we have the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act.  That`s why we need to pass the Equality Act.  That`s why we need to pass the ERA.

BIDEN:  I supported the ERA from the very beginning.  I`m the guy that extended the Voting Rights Act for 25 years.  We got to the place where we got 98 out of the 98 votes of the United States Senate doing it.


HAYES:  I`m joined now by the person who`s most responsible, more responsible than anyone for reciting what these debates would look like and what they look like going forward Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez.

We didn`t know how it would go.  Give yourself a grade in how you and the DNC managed this process.

TOM PEREZ, CHAIR, DNC:  Well, I`m excited that so many people watched it.  I was really excited to see those viewership numbers.  My goal, Chris, was to make sure that everybody got a fair shake to communicate their vision and that we didn`t talk about hand size.  We talked about health care, and climate change, and how we build an economy that works for everyone not just a few at the top.

And I think we did a good job in having that.  We saw disagreements.  And you know, Chris, I think the area just to take one example where we really helped to crystallize where we are and where we need to go and what the differences are is in healthcare, because every candidate believes that every person in this country should have access to quality affordable health care.

We`re 90 percent of the way there thanks to Barack Obama and LBJ and other Democrats.  And we had a spirited discussion about how to get to the mountaintop, that final ten percent.  Some people believe that we should have a single-payer model, Medicare for all, others believe that you should be able to keep your health care if you want it and we can build on the Affordable Care Act.

And I think voters knowing that now, if you want to choose one path or another, now you know what the candidates see.  I think that`s great.

HAYES:  Yes, I agree.  I thought -- I thought the health care off of the immigration debates, I thought the civil rights rates were all you know substantively about people with different positions on the issues within the Democratic coalition.

I want you to respond to a line that has developed, and I`ve heard it from a lot of sort of chin-stroking and tisk-tisking pundits who are kind of former Republicans who don`t like Donald Trump but they`re -- they want the Democratic Party to speak to them, to fire them up, to speak to the David Frum`s and the David Brooks, and the Charlie Sykes and all those folks, and they say oh. you`re chasing us away.  You sound too liberal.  You`re alienating us.

What`s -- what do you say to people that say the party is moving too far left or it`s alienating moderates in these -- in these debates?

PEREZ:  The party is moving exactly where the American people are.  The American people have compassion.  We look at that photograph of Mr. Martinez and his daughter and we say that`s not who we are as a nation.  We look at that person who was diabetic and is rationing her insulin so she can buy food and say that`s not who we are as a nation.

We look at that person who just lost his job at the Chevy plant in Lordstown, a job that his father and grandfather held, and Barack Obama saved the auto industry, and Donald Trump promised that there`d be no plant closures and there are, and we say we`re on your side.

Voters want to know who`s got their back on the issues that matter most and that`s the Democratic Party.

HAYES:  So, I want to talk a little bit about the sort of logistics here because they`re fascinating and obviously the DNC was very transparent.  Months ago they said look, there`s -- this is the threshold and there`s going to be 20 slots, and those -- the people that made that threshold, they were on the stage.  There`s another debate in July and it`s the exact same threshold.  Is it also -- is that also capped at 20?

PEREZ:  That`s correct.

HAYES:  So even -- so then there are tiebreaker scenarios for candidates that might -- if 22 meet the threshold, then what`s the tiebreaker?

PEREZ:  Correct.  Right.  Then we will look at -- well, first of all, if you -- there are two thresholds for the viewers.  There`s a polling threshold of one percent or you have -- you`ve gotten 65,000 grassroots donors including at least 200 from 20 states.  That`s the 1971 campaign finance laws about public financing and we modernized them.  We didn`t just you know, pull that out of thin air.

HAYES:  Right.

PEREZ:  And so those are the two criteria.  If somebody has reached both, they will make the debate stage.  And 14 out of the 20 that you saw the last two nights did both including all of the female candidates and all of the candidates of color I would note.

And so let`s assume for the moment that in July we still have some that have not met both.  Then what you will see is we`ll look at polling averages to see who moved up highest on the polling averages and that`s how we will break the tie.  And then in September, we have different criteria because you have to show progress.

HAYES:  Yes.

PEREZ:  So in September, it moves from one percent to two percent, and it`s no longer in or, it`s two percent and 130 -- 130,000 unique donors.  And if you have 100,000 now, Chris, you only need 30,000 more.

HAYES:  So that`s key I think for people to understand.  You`ve need -- there`s like identical criteria for the June and July ones.  Two nights, ten candidates per night, 20 candidates, right.  Then August no debate.  Then September, the first step up.  So now we`re at two percent plus 130,000 donors.  You guys haven`t announced October, correct?

PEREZ:  I think that`s correct.  We announced this for September, and you know, we`re continuing to assess.

HAYES:  Yes, one of the things I think that`s interesting here, right, I mean, there is all this talk about how big the field is that those criteria are going to have a huge effect.  How many people are on that debate stage in October, and then November, and then December, and then when you`re up against the Iowa caucuses?

I mean, do you feel, does the DNC feel that it`s important to winnow, to devote essentially attention and eyeballs towards a smaller group of candidates who are performing better as time goes by?

PEREZ:  Well we -- here is my core belief right now and our North Star principle is, we want to make sure that everybody got a fair shake.  We wanted to build a very transparent set of criteria.

HAYES:  Right.  Let me interrupt, though.  I get that.  But that`s -- that is -- everyone getting a fair shake is intention with concentration of attention on people that are the most serious candidates.

PEREZ:  Right.  And you see it`s a stair step and it`s always been a stair step and this is no different.  And what I`m saying now, I`ve been asked today, well, why don`t you start winnowing the field now by raising the criteria for July?  I don`t think that`s fair.

HAYES:  No, you guys -- you already announced the criteria.

PEREZ:  And we don`t want to do that.  And also, I want to make sure that everybody -- I`m a baseball fanatic.

HAYES:  Me too.

PEREZ:  And, you know, I want people -- I want every single candidate to be able to say that they got to the plate, they swung the bat, they had a fair opportunity, not only with our debates, but with all the various forums that are being held with those town hall meetings that you have done and other networks have done.

I believe there has been unprecedented earned media access for our candidates this time around.

HAYES:  I think that`s true.

PEREZ:  And that is spectacular.  That was our goal.  And as a result of that, I believe, we`ve had this record viewership and it will continue.  And I also believe that you got to raise the bar and you got to show progress.  And that`s only fair.

HAYES:  Final question on election integrity and election protection.  Some comments by Jimmy Carter today in which he essentially called the president illegitimate because of the aid that was given his campaign by Russia, aid which we`ve established was exactly extended.

There`s legislation from the House that for election protection that is essentially being blocked by Mitch McConnell.  Are you confident that this election process in the general will be an election that is protected and has integrity?

PEREZ:  I am absolutely confident that foreign actors will attempt to do again what they did in 2016, because we are at war right now, Chris.  It is a cyber war.  And the Commander in Chief is complicit with the enemy.  He has his head in the sand deliberately because he benefitted from it.  And that is why we have invested early and often and with many partners to make sure we`re securing our elections.

When Director Mueller testifies, I hope somebody asks him about the indictment in which it is alleged that foreign interference took place, not only at the DNC, but in 500,000 names in an unnamed state party.  We need to know more about that.  And this president isn`t doing anything about it.

And that is why election protection is a staple for the Democratic National Committee and for others in the Democratic ecosystem.  This shouldn`t be about right versus left.  This is about right versus wrong.  It`s about election integrity, and it`s about our democracy.

HAYES:  Well, I should say, I should slightly correct you, which he is doing something about it, which is joking with Vladimir Putin about it today.  Tom Perez, thank you for being with me tonight.

PEREZ:  Always a pleasure, Chris.

HAYES:  All right, still ahead, the first major test of the campaign.  How did the candidates fair?  We`ll talk about the many layers behind the most intense moment of last night, in two minutes.


HAYES:  Unequivocally, the most intense, the most replayed and talked about moment from the two debates was the exchange between Sen. Kamala Harris and former Vice President Joe Biden.  When Harris brought up comments that Biden had made last week and in line with comments he has made throughout his career and his memoir about basically his positive working relationship with white southern Democrats who are notorious segregationist Senators.


HARRIS:  I`m going to now direct this at Vice President Biden.  I do not believe you are a racist, and I agree with you when you commit yourself to the importance of finding common ground.

But I also believe and it`s personal and I was actually very -- it was hurtful to hear you talk about the reputations of two United States senators who built their reputations and career on the segregation of race in this country.  And it was not only that but you also worked with them to oppose busing.

And you know there was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools and she was bused to school every day, and that little girl was me.

BIDEN:  It`s a mischaracterization of my position across the board.  I did not praise racists.  That is not true.  The fact is in terms of bussing, the bussing I never -- you would have been able to go to school the same exact way because it was local decision made by your city council.  That`s fine.  That`s one of the things argued for, that we should not be -- we should be breaking down these lines.

HARRIS:  But Vice President Biden, do you agree today, do you agree today that you were wrong to oppose bussing in America then?  Do you agree?

BIDEN:  I did not oppose bussing in America.  What I opposed is bussing ordered by the Department of Education.  That`s what I opposed.  I did not oppose --

HARRIS:  Well, there was a failure of states to integrate public schools in America.  I was part of the second class to integrate, Berkeley California public schools almost two decades after Brown v Board of Education.

BIDEN:  Because your City Council made that decision.  It was a local decision.

HARRIS:  So that`s where the federal government must step in.  That`s why we have the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act.  That`s why we need to pass the Equality Act.  That`s why we need to pass the ERA because there are moments in history where states fail to preserve the civil rights of all people.

BIDEN:  I supported -- I supported the ERA from the very beginning.  I`m the guy that extended the Voting Rights Act for 25 years.  We got to the place where we got 98 out of the 98 votes of the United States Senate doing it.  I`ve also argued very strongly that we, in fact, deal with the notion of denying people access to the ballot box.  I agree that everybody once -- my time is up.  I`m sorry.


HAYES:  Today Joe Biden was back on the trail, trying to clean up the fallout from that clash last night.


BIDEN:  I heard and I listened to and I respect Senator Harris, but, you know, we all know that 30 seconds to 60 seconds on a campaign debate exchange can`t do justice to a lifetime committed to civil rights.  I want to be absolutely clear about my record and position on racial justice, including bussing.  I never, never, never, ever, ever opposed voluntary bussing.  And as a program that Senator Harris participated in, and it made a difference in her life.


HAYES:  Joining me now for more on the first round of the Democratic debates Howard Dean, former DNC chair and a 2004 Democratic presidential candidate, Aimee Allison, President of the national political organization She The People, and Dorian Warren President of the National community organizing group Community Change.

Aimee, let me start with you.  So there`s two levels I want to talk about this on and we`ll start with the kind of performance level for lack of a better word right, just the dynamics of the exchange and your impressions of the sort of sharpness with which Senator Harris made her case and Biden`s response.

AIMEE ALLISON, PRESIDENT, SHE THE PEOPLE:  Well, I was in the room and I watched as she turned toward Joe Biden and talked personally.  This is something that you know, Senator Harris is not really known for talking personally, but when she was vulnerable and talked about her own experience and the hurt, she was really speaking of an experience many of us can deeply relate to, and calling him on his history really is a question of how committed are you to people who are just like me.

When she said the little girl liked me, you know, I`m not usually emotional in political setting, you know, I got to tear it up because it was so profound for me to watch a woman of color on stage calling out you know, arguably one of the most recognized establishment Democrats in a context where black and brown women have felt ignored, particularly black women.  In 2017 the country woke up to the fact that black women had been the backbone but had been ignored.

We`re very accustomed to Democrats who have traded our protections or our rights for political reasons but this was a moment where she showed very direct and she took a lot of space and he was defensive on his record.

HAYES:  Yes.  Howard Dean, what did you think -- I mean, it seemed to me that there are defenses that Joe Biden could offer in the moment he`s got a very long career right?  So in some ways, part of what he`s going to have to do in this primary talk about 40 years, thousands of votes, thousands of pieces of legislation.

It seemed to me there were ways to handle that or defenses to offer that he didn`t necessarily offer in that moment.  What do you think?

HOWARD DEAN, FORMER CHAIRMAN, DNC:  Well, he`s in a tough spot.  The ground is shifting under his feet as it is in under my generation`s feet.  And you`re seeing a youth movement take over the Democratic Party.  And that was Eric Swalwell`s comment.  But this is very much like this stuff that`s going on with MeToo.  What was maybe swept under the rug 30 years ago is not anymore.

And so I`m not saying that Joe isn`t going to be the nominee, he may well be, but that`s what the battle really is.  It`s changing.  It`s OK to compromise before, it`s not OK to compromise now.

HAYES:  Let me say this at actually Dorian because this is something you and I have talked about in other context.  Because this is not a defense of Joe Biden but it`s the context here that seems important. 

Federally mandated busing as a feature of a federal Department of Education desegregation program as he`s existed in the mid-1970s and then was basically ratcheted back by the courts and political losses.  Bernie Sanders is the only person I think in the Democratic field calling for that, Julian Castro a little bit.  And last night Kamala Harris` press secretary when asked, do you support busing said yes a one-word answer.  But we don`t -- like the actual this is not a thing.

That policy that he was getting raked over last night is a policy that the National Democratic Party and national white politicians have retreated from for 40 years across the board in cities blue and red large and small.

DORIAN WARREN, PRESIDENT, COMMUNITY CHANGE:  100 percent, 100 percent.  I feel like I`m the last generation.  I was actually bused to magnet school in Chicago from the south side to the north side literally of the city.  And it was -- it was you know, for so many of us it was transformational in terms of our life trajectories and mobility.

Here`s the thing.  Nobody under 40 actually knows what that means.  Like what is busing mean?  What is voluntary or forced or mandated desegregation mean?  So it`s interesting that it`s now back center -- right in the center of the Democratic debate --

HAYES:  It`s fascinating.

WARREN:  It is -- it is I think about -- and Amy said this.  This is how social movements have changed the nature of the Democratic Party.  So there has been a racial justice movement right, the movement for black lives that many people say it`s just focused on policing and criminal justice but it`s all -- it`s put these other issues of race front and center and that was an interesting addition to the conversation on racial justice around school segregation, or schools have been resegregate so there`s a whole new conversation we`re about to have about what is our commitment to desegregation.

HAYES:  Thank you.  Aimee, that`s my point is that -- my only point is that it is -- it is easier to level a critique of a white democratic politician in 1976-1977 being against busing which to be clear substantively morally wrong in my view but politically the correct view in terms of the majority of his white voters, majority of the voters in Delaware.

It`s easier level that critique than to affirmatively say in 2019 we should have federally mandated desegregation plans that involve busing kids.

ALLISON:  You know, Joe Biden sent out a message to his list that said look, my -- to talk about race shouldn`t be about the past.  He wanted to basically -- let`s forget about that, let`s focus on the future.  So yes, let`s focus on the future.

So we may talk about one specific set of policies and legislation like bussng which is indicative of a strategy used decades past, but what is this true commitment to change in the structural ways that black people have you know, their futures have been limited by building in racism into the systems, what is that for people right now.

And so it is -- what I thought was really fascinating very powerful that Senator Harris did was she reintroduced herself to the country and placed herself in a legacy that is very powerful.  He use the word busing and you think about Ruby sales or you think about the trajectory of civil rights, she`s indicating something that`s bigger than policy.

HAYES:  Yes.  I want to actually stay on this topic because I think there is a lot here to unpack.  So everyone, stick around when I take a quick break.  We have a lot to get through from the very first Democratic primary debate including what happened all the way back on night one.  Remember that?  What we learned about the Democratic candidates ahead.  Don`t go anywhere.



WARREN: Who is this economy really working for?  It`s doing great for a thinner and thinner slice at the top.  It`s doing great for giant drug companies.  It`s just not doing great for people who a re trying to get a prescription filled.  It`s doing great for people who want to invest in private prisons, just not for the African-Americans and Latinx whose families are torn apart, whose lives are destroyed, and whose communities are ruined.  It`s doing great for giant oil companies that want to drill everywhere, just not for the rest of us who are watching climate change bare down upon us.

When you`ve got a government, when you`ve got an economy, that does great for those with money and isn`t doing great for everyone else, that is corruption, pure and simple.


HAYES:  It seems like a long time ago now, but one of the stars from night one of the debates was Senator Elizabeth Warren.  She didn`t have the opportunity to directly attack the other candidates at the top of the polls, but she laid out her many policy proposals and walked away I think largely unscathed.

Still with me, former DNC Chair Howard Dean, She the People president Aimee Allison, and Community Change President Dorian Warren.

Howard, one thing that sort of I think -- thought connected nights one and two, and across most of the candidates, and epitomized by Elizabeth Warren there is, there was a very full-throated and central critique of the Trump economy, which I thought was interesting because so often in the punditry around him has conceded as a strength.  What did you think of that?

HOWARD DEAN, FORMER DNC CHAIRMAN:  I think her mastery of policy is extraordinary, and that was an extraordinary speech that she gave, and it has resonance with the American people.  The problem that she has is people would much rather talk about the food fight that was going on the next night than they would about Elizabeth Warren`s policies.

Nonetheless, I think Elizabeth is going to be one of the top candidates going into the convention, most likely, unless there is a major stumble.  I think there is probably room for four or five people to go well past the first four states, and she`ll most likely be one of them.

HAYES:  I thought the economic storytelling was sort of interesting and central because you could tell that they all understand how key that is, like there is that old Karl Rove thing about like attack the strength, right.  With John Kerry it was like well John Kerry is a war hero, so you can`t attack John Kerry about his service.  It was like, oh, no, we`re going to literally attack him about his service.

And the Trump thing is like, well, he`s all these things, but the economy is pretty good, and it was interesting that the Democrats were like let`s go right at that.

DORIAN WARREN, PRESIDENT, COMMUNITY CHANGE:  You have to go on offense.  And because people are suffering in the so-called good economy.  And so what`s the story that you  tell?  And as Howard just said, right, she is a great -- Elizabeth Warren is a great storyteller, that she wraps the policy in the story that invites people in and can see themselves in it and can relate to.

What united both nights, frankly, in terms of the president`s strengths, if you think about the immigration conversation in last night`s debate and you think about the economy conversation the first  night, when we go into a recession, what is the president going to do in terms of his campaign narrative?  He is always attacked immigrants and been racist in terms of his rhetoric in good economic times.  What is he going to do in bad economic times?  And so when you combine those two things, he is going to double down on immigration and scapegoating immigrants when there is an economic downturn.  Democrats have to take both of those head-on.  You have to take his strength on the economy and take away his strategic racism in his attacks on immigrants.

HAYES:  You know, Aimee, one of the things these debates are designed in some ways to put candidates in uncomfortable situations, or to force them, right to talk about things they don`t necessarily want to, but I wonder how much when you sort of think about the message in the aggregate over the first two nights of these debates, you felt like it was coherent, you felt like there is a kind of general consensus about what the Democratic Party stands for or is about.

AIMEE ALLISON, PRESIDENT, SHE THE FIRST:  Yeah.  I would say that one other thing is with the exception of perhaps Biden, I`m still on the fence about, but most of the top candidates have adopted a lot of the language of racial, social and economic justice, even in that clip you just played, Elizabeth Warren is telling an economic message, she`s telling it very simply and straight forward, but she is also explicitly mentioning black and Latinx communities.  She understands who she is campaigning for.

You know, on the Wednesday night, the first night of the debate, She the People worked with New Florida majority to host a watch party for 400 women of color and we all watched it together.

  We are listening as a quarter, nearly a quarter of Democratic voters and most loyal Democrats, were listening for these racial, economic and social justice messages.  And so for not just Senator Warren, but when Booker mentions trans rights and trans people and the violence they suffer, when Julian Castro mentions it`s enough -- I think he was correcting Amy Klobuchar -- he said, look, racial justice has to be part of an economic solution, that makes me know that the center of our politics and our party and what we`re looking for is a leader who can deal with our complex issues.

Women of color call that intersectional politics.  But simply put, if you have a leader that can think 4D in those ways, those are the kind of leaders that are exciting the base right now.

HAYES:  Howard, what do you think about the critique.  I asked Tom Perez about it, and I think it relates to what Aimee was just saying, because look, the party is in the midst of a fascinating ideological moment, beth on the sort of substantive issues about things like should we repeal criminalization of illegal entry into the U.S., which was one of the debates between Julian Castro and Beto O`Rourke.  There is this line of thinking that the party is moving too far left, or even that the kind of way that the party is talking to itself, right, as it sort of stitches together an extremely diverse coalition, the most diverse coalition in American politics since reconstruction, that the way it`s talking to itself will be alienating to voters that are not already in the big Democratic tent.  What do you think of that critique?

DEAN:  Well, I think that is an interesting critique, and I think it`s wrong.  And that`s what I was talking about before when we were talking about the ground shifting under Joe Biden`s feet.  Our base is completely different than it was even when Bill Clinton was elected president.   It is young people. 70 percent of people under 35 vote for Democrats, that is in places like Virginia and Kansas, not just New York.

People of color are a core part of our base and women are a core part of our base, all women, not just non-college educated women so -- in the disturbs.  So our base has changed dramatically, and that is the battle we`re having here.

And there is not a lot of acrimony about the battle.  The fact is that our base has just changed dramatically.  And we`re not going to get back the people who don`t like immigrants.  And that`s fine.

HAYES:  And this is the thing about these two nights, I mean, both in the representation on stage, right.  I mean, you had a gay man, you had several women, you had a woman of color, you had an African-American, you had a Chicano, like...

WARREN:  Like think about who performed the best.

HAYES:  Women.

WARREN:  On both nights.

HAYES:  I think women, both nights, right?

I think that both what`s on stage and also the coalition itself, like, it`s not easy.  I mean, there is almost sort of like looking over from outside being like oh, those Democrats again.  And it`s like forming tight multiracial coalitions that endure in American politics is the thing that people have been trying to do for hundreds of years and is not an easy task.

WARREN:  This is the most diverse country in the history of the world in terms of democracies, so having a multiracial base and alliance is probably one of the hardest things to ever do in politics.  It`s never really been pulled off before in a sustainable way, at least in this country.  There have been like three moments, you know.  You mentioned Reconstruction, there was a short moment.  We can argue there was a brief moment in civil rights and then resulting in Obama.

And this is another moment.  And I think this moment has the potential to be transformational.

HAYES:  If you can get it right.

WARREN:  But there is three electorates here, right?  There is the base, and Governor Dean was right to point out it`s young.  There is some white working class folks that I think that`s Biden`s strategy.  The third group that no one talks about are nonvoters.

HAYES:  How do you get them?

WARREN:  How do you get them?

HAYES:  Howard Dean, Aimee Allison, and Dorian Warren, that was great.  Thank you so much to all of you.

Still ahead, the Supreme Court this week highlighted the stakes in the 2020 election, issuing two major rulings that will have profound effects for decades to come.

Plus, we`ll check in on the front-runner of a different election in tonight`s Thing One, Thing Two, next.


HAYES:  A reminder that ours is not the only election in town, broadly construed.  Across the pond in the race to replace Theresa May as prime minister, the Conservative Tory Party, will make their final pick next month, and the odds-on favorite is this guy, of course, Boris Johnson, former mayor of London, the one-time zip-line enthusiast, also former foreign secretary, pro-Brexit, pretty controversial figure all around, gotten more controversial over the years.

He has of course often been compared to Donald Trump, and not just because they have the  similar hair.  Johnson also has issues with telling the truth.  As a young newspaper reporter, he was fired for just making things up.

And in his political career, he has been fired for lying about an affair, and of course he sold the whole country a bill of goods on Brexit.

But Johnson is also known for the Boris Bus, the classic double decker that he brought back into service when he was mayor of London.  It turned out to be a disaster kind of for a number of reasons, not the least of them the Boris buses were notoriously and outrageously hot in the summer.

But Boris has a new bus of his own design, and it`s all really strange.  That`s Thing 2 in 60 seconds.


HAYES:  Boris Johnson, the favorite in the race to be the next UK prime minister, is an interesting fellow, to say the least.  But this interview he did last week -- this week -- was particularly odd.  The question is a simple human one.  What do you do to relax?  His answer, well, we can`t decide what exactly is going on here, he is either telling the truth and it`s kind of adorable, but also a little strange, or he is just literally making this up as he goes along.  You be the judge.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  What do you do to relax?  What do you do to switch off?

BORIS JOHNSON, FORMER MAYOR OF LONDON:  I -- I -- I like to paint or I make things.  I like to...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  What do you make?

JOHNSON:  I make -- I have a thing where I make models of -- when I was mayor, rather, we build a beautiful -- I make buses.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  You make buses?

JOHNSON:  I make models of buses.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Are they going to be in Downing Street?

JOHNSON:  So, what I do -- no, I didn`t mean models of buses, what I make is -- I get old, I don`t know, wooden crates, right, and then I paint them.  And they have two -- I suppose it`s a white box that`s been used to contain  two wine bottles, right.  And it will have a dividing thing.  And I turn it into a bus, so I put passengers -- you really want to know this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  You`re making them -- you`re making cardboard buses.  That`s what you do to enjoy yourself.

JOHNSON:  No, I paint the passengers enjoying themselves on the wonderful bus.



HAYES:  We had two major consequential decisions from the Supreme Court on the very last  day of the session, and it`s a bit of a good news/bad news situation.

First, the bad news, the Supreme Court blocked challenges to partisan gerrymandering, ruling basically the courts can`t stop legislators from doing whatever they want on that score.

Now in the past, that`s led to situations like, for instance, Wisconsin where Republicans drew such a tilted map that even though, as the Journal Sentinel reports, Democrats won 53 percent of all the  assembly votes cast statewide, they only came away with 36 percent of the seats. 

Now, to be clear, it`s a problem that can cut both ways.  The Maryland map, which is one of the maps that was also challenged in this case, has been drawn to favor Democrats.  But the practice risks further driving deeply partisan state legislatures into maximalism.  It also risks furthering a red-blue divide polarizing the country even more.

Now, for the good news from the Supreme Court, on a question that we`ve covered extensively here, whether to include a question on citizenship in the 2020 census.  And the conclusion of that question, experts agree, would almost certainly drive down census responses in immigrant and immigrant adjacent communities, many of which happen to be in blue states.  It would take federal funding and representation away from them if that were to happen.

Now, the possibility of adding that question appears to have been driven by people in the administration such as Steve Bannon and Chris Kobach, but it`s worth remembering that commerce secretary Wilbur Ross lied about the whole origins of that, even lied about it to congress.

In his decision, Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the courts four liberals to find that the administration`s stated reasons to add a citizenship question were just BS, pretext.  In fact, Roberts quoted another judge, Henry J. Friendly, when he wrote "the courts members," quote, "are not required to exhibit a naivete from which ordinary citizens are free."

In other words, Trump administration, we see what you`re doing.  We know what you`re trying to do.  You lied about it too flagrantly for us to ignore. 

The court did leave the door open for the administration to come up with a more convincing reason to add a citizenship question, though the discovery so far in the case has already turned up documents suggesting the racial motivations involved, and thereby making it harder for the government to pretend otherwise.

Butt, maybe Roberts wants them to pretend otherwise.  Really the question has just become whether Chief Justice Roberts just wants the Trump administration to go and think about it, and then come back and lie to the court a little more deftly.  Let`s hope not.


HAYES:  Here to talk about how Democrats could and should run in this election, Corbin Trent, communications director for Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Maya Wiley, MSNBC contributor and the founder for the Center for Social Inclusion.

OK, so I think there is this thing happening like the David Brooks column, like all the Never Trumpers and the centrist being like, oh, you`re going too far to the left and people won`t like that.  And I think that`s under theorized, right, just to agree with that.

But I also think there`s a similar instinct that`s happening on the sort of left part of the Democratic coalition in which people have convinced themselves that everything they want substantively is also good politics, everything that is morally correct is also good politics, that it is good politics to decriminalize illegal entry, good politics to pass a New Deal, good politics to do Medicare for all, good politics to forgive all student loan debt, and that like the voters are just going to love that, that`s what the voters are clamoring for.

CORBIN TRENT, COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR, ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ:  And there`s polling that sort of back that theory up.

HAYES:  And the polling is a mile wide and an inch deep, it`s like go out and actually try to pass that thing and see what happens to the polling on Medicare for all when you have a knock down, drag out fight.

TRENT:  but it`s a question of are you going to go out there put your finger in the wind and see where people are at right now, or are you going to try to lead and change where people are at in the future?

MAYA WILEY, FOUNDER, CENTER FOR SOCIAL INCLUSION:  And do they understand what you are talking about?  Because I think...

HAYES:  Well, in some ways the ambiguity helps the people on the Medicare for all side, because part of the reason it polls so well is because people think it`s just going to be optional.

WILEY:  Well, it`s also what we understand.  I mean, part of the problem with the debates was it wasn`t clear what anybody was talking about.  So, if you say, for example, the question came, are you going to lose your private insurance company or are you not going to lose your private insurance  company, the real question for most Americans is, are you going to lose your doctor.  They don`t give a shit out of -- oh, sorry.

HAYES:  They don`t really care.

WILEY:  I`m just sitting -- I mean, I...

TRENT:  It`s what happens.  Blame me.

WILEY:  What people don`t want to lose is their doctor, because their doctor is the relationship.  The relationship is not with the insurance company.

So, the question becomes are you going to lose your doctor, but that`s not the conversation that happened last night.

HAYES:  All that can be true, all of that could be true...

TRENT:  Or a Green New Deal.

HAYES:  And I guarantee you this, is a Green New Deal and Medicare for all were actually being debated in the House and Senate and possible, that they would be under water by the time the thing passed.

Can you not?  Isn`t that obviously the case?

TRENT:  I think that it`s about pushing -- I mean, we saw that when FDR was trying to pass the New Deal originally, right.  There were things that -- World War II, our entry into World War II was highly unpopular with the American people for a long time, but they went out and they made the case.  They fought for it, and they campaigned on it...

HAYES:  Right, but the other example of this is like sometimes maybe you shouldn`t push things that are too unpopular, because it will literally cost you elections.

TRENT:  Busing might be one of those things...

HAYES:  Well, that`s a question, right? 

TRENT: was the right thing to do at the time.  If we were going to be able to integrate our schools, we had to pressure -- the federal government had to make that happen.

HAYES:  And people ran away from it, because it was politically toxic.

WILEY:  But there`s also how do you talk about?  How do you talk about it in away that Americans know what we are talking about?

And so there is wonk talk and there`s real talk.  And wonk talk is -- I`m so enamored with the policy idea that I`m not going to talk about what speaks to what Americans care about.  So, busing, let`s take that aside, because that`s a complicated one.  In the context of health care reform and what everyone wants, and some of the candidates were saying this last night, the real issue is do you get to  see a doctor when you`re sick, do you not get to see a doctor when you`re sick?  Can you afford to see the doctor when you are sick?  Can you not afford to see the doctor and if you have a doctor you trust, do you get to see that doctor?

All of the confusion about policy proposals around private insurance made it much more difficult to understand do you get to see the doctor of your choice?  And under a lot of the models you do.

TRENT:  And at what point?

HAYES:  Yes, although no one can guarantee that as we saw with the ACA.  And if you guarantee it, it will come back to bite you.

WILEY:  No, I think that`s the wrong example.  That`s the wrong -- no, that`s the wrong example, because I think this is what happens when we talk about specific policy versus what are we trying to achieve.  Because the reality is let`s take single payer.  Single payer, if you look at Canada says you don`t get to keep your private insurance company unless you are purchasing supplemental insurance.  Australia says, look, the question is do you get this benefits package and how do we pay for it?  And you can make a choice as the individual whether you pay more taxes or stick with your private insurer.  That`s the wonky conversation.

HAYES:  Yes, it`s that`s a wonky conversation, but the question is, there is a certain amount of good communication that gets you so far.  And there`s a certain amount that like you will face backlash.

TRENT:  But there`s also 40 to 50 percent of people that aren`t voting in our elections, right.  At some point you`ve got to figure out how to get those people off the couch and into your democracy.

HAYES:  Right, and if you do that you win.  But good luck with that.

Corbin Trent and Maya Wiley, thanks for sharing your thoughts.

That is ALL IN for this evening, "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. 

Good evening, Rachel.