Witness testimony begins on the first day of the Oath Keepers` sedition trial. The New York Times identifies Perla, the operative behind Ron DeSantis` migrant stunt. With nearly 100 percent of the vote in, Bolsonaro is at 43 percent while his challenger, former leftist President Lula da Silva which would send the race to a runoff. Poll shows GOP support is growing among Latino voters. Brett Favre hires an ex-Trump lawyer amid Mississippi welfare scandal.
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JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: The President also is set to visit the Fort Myers area in Florida on Wednesday to survey the damage from Hurricane Ian. And that is tonight`s "REIDOUT." ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES starts now.
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CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on ALL IN. The seditious conspiracy trial begins.
ELMER STEWART RHODES, FOUNDER OATH KEEPERS: Show the world who the traitors are, and then use the Insurrection Act to drop the hammer on them.
HAYES: Tonight, how prosecutors sought to prove the Insurrection Act which is legal cover for a coup by playing tape on the defendant all but admitting it. Plus, new evidence of Oath Keeper communications with Roger Stone.
Then, the operative who pulled off the DeSantis migrants stunt is unmasked. The New York Times reporter who revealed Perla`s identity joins me live.
Plus, connecting the dots between the election in Brazil, Brexit, and Donald Trump.
And meet the new attorney representing Brett Favre in his volleyball welfare scandal.
ERIC HERSCHMANN, FORMER WHITE HOUSE LAWYER: Get a great effing criminal defense lawyer. You`re going to need it.
HAYES: When ALL IN starts right now.
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HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. Well, today we got an extended look at just how narrowly we avoided the January 6 insurrection becoming much worse because this morning the seditious conspiracy trial of five members of the Oath Keepers started. That, of course, the far-right militia group who prosecutors say plotted to use violence, weapons if necessary, to block the peaceful transfer of power.
Now, even before today`s opening arguments began, lawyers for one of the defendants argued to suppress evidence of two hand grenades found in an RV apparently brought to dc by one of the alleged co-conspirators, this man named Jeremy Brown. Lawyers say Brown`s DNA was not found on the grenades and that many members of his family including his dog use the RV, to which the judge reportedly replied, was it the dog`s hand grenade.
And the topic of weapons and the potential for violence was a recurring theme today, as it will likely be for the remainder of this trial. The government today previously released these security camera photos seeming to show members of the Oath Keepers bringing what appear to be gun cases, rifle shaped objects into a hotel room in Virginia.
We already know from this seditious conspiracy indictment that a major component of the Oath Keepers` plan on January 6, according the government, was to ready a so-called quick response force, which according to Department of Justice, "were prepared to rapidly transport firearms and other weapons into DC in support of operations aimed at using force to stop the lawful transfer of presidential power.
In one message quoted in the indictment, one Oath Keeper, a man by the name of Thomas Caldwell, even floated the idea of using boats to quickly bring large numbers of weapons from Virginia to DC. "How many people have a boat on a trailer that can handle a Potomac crossing? If we had someone standing by at a dock ramp, one near the Pentagon for sure, we could have our quick response team with the heavy weapons standing by, quickly load them and ferry them across the river to our waiting arms."
Now, you might have heard of that defendant Thomas Caldwell before. It might ring a bell. And it`s because he`s appeared on Fox News quite a bit where he`s portrayed as a simple man who was being persecuted by an overzealous government.
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TUCKER CARLSON, HOST, FOX NEWS: So, this indictment -- so, you`re pushing 70 or 100 percent military disabled, you spent a career in the Navy. This indictment paints you as the leader of a crack commando unit trying to stage a sort of D-Day invasion on the banks of the Potomac with what they described as heavy weapons. Were you planning what kind of heavy weapons do you think that refers to? Were you planning to do that?
THOMAS CALDWELL, OATH KEEPER: I have no idea. And no, I was not, Tucker. Look, I was a Navy guy. OK. Now, Navy guys do know about water, but it`s like aircraft carriers. You know, we`re talking about Blue Water Navy here. So, this other stuff I don`t know anything about, didn`t have any role in planning any of it. It`s just more hooey.
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HAYES: So, Caldwell`s argument there, as you can see, sort of backed up by Tucker Carlson is that these allegations are false, that I guess he never even wrote that in an email, that Caldwell is just a harmless old man. That`s probably a characterization prosecutors would disagree with. According to a search warrant filing from earlier this year when law enforcement search Caldwell`s home, they found, and I quote here, "a document that included the words death list handwritten across the top with the name of a Georgia election official, a purported family member of that official, and the county and state associated with that official all handwritten underneath."
Now, I should say, a judge ruled prosecutors could not use that piece of evidence in this trial which as a legal matter I think makes sense, but they appear to plenty other samples to choose from. According to NBC News reporter Ryan Reilly who was in the courtroom today, "The Department of Justice quoted Thomas Caldwell saying they would have killed 100 politicians if they had guns on January 6."
It was a sentiment apparently echoed by the leader of the Oath Keepers, another defendant named Elmer Stewart Rhodes III. As NBC News reports, "My only regret is that they should have brought rifles, Rhodes said in a recording from January 10 played by the government." He added that they could have fixed it right then and there if they had weapons with them at the Capitol.
So far, three Oath Keepers, keep in mind, have already pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy. Four more have pleaded guilty to conspiring to obstruct Congress during the insurrection. And the Department of Justice has mountains of evidence in the form of messages the Oath Keeper sent each other. And so, the argument from this trial, at least so far -- again, first day, appears to broadly go like this, that the defendants didn`t actually do anything illegal.
Rhodes and his lawyers in particular have argued that Rhodes was simply waiting for Donald Trump to invoke the Insurrection Act. That`s a pre-Civil War law that would essentially allow the President to deputize these militia groups to act on behalf of the government. That appears to be the argument that Rhodes made on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones` show ahead of January 6.
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RHODES: We have men already stationed outside DC as a nuclear option. And in case they attempt to remove the president illegally, we will step in and stop it. So, I`ve got good men on the ground already. We`ve been delivered recon there last week. And we`re sorting out we`re going to be staging and we`ll be there. We`ll be inside DC, we`ll also be on the outside dc of DC armed, prepared to go in if the President calls.
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HAYES: Again, according to Ryan Reilly, prosecutors said today the Oath Keepers, "Think Insurrection Act were magic words that would give them cover." Then they played audio of Rhodes saying the Insurrection Act was legal cover. And of course, Donald Trump did not end up invoking the Insurrection Act but the Oath Keepers seem to go about their plan anyway. That`s pictures of some of them going up in the building. And then some of them allegedly lamented that they did not bring weapons to the Capitol to make things even more violent, potentially deadlier, than they had been. Imagined, imagine, imagine if a bunch of folks there, trained ex-military particularly had to have the weapons, what that day would look like.
Right at the end of today`s proceedings, we also got a preview of what there is to come. According to a reporter from Reuters, "The government showed some evidence of communications between the Oath Keepers and Roger Stone." Now, that`s an interesting shoe to drop. Stone, of course, the longtime political adviser to Donald Trump. His involvement as a potential liaison between militia groups in the White House is of great interest to all the various entities investigating the insurrection. All which to say, we still have a lot more to learn from this trial and is only getting started.
Now, joining me now are two people who are in the courtroom during the Oath Keepers` trial today, Ryan Reilly, justice reporter for NBC News and Glenn Kirschner, former federal prosecutor who spent 30 years in the U.S. Attorney`s office in Washington DC.
Ryan, let me start with you and just give us a little bit of a kind of scene setter here of what today was in court and what you who have reported on this as thoroughly as anyone learn today.
RYAN REILLY, NBC NEWS JUSTICE REPORTER: Yes, I mean, I think that the surprise twist here was those recordings because we`d seen a lot of these text messages. We sort of knew what to expect. That, of course, was all new to the jurors. But in terms of what is publicly known, it was this recording on January 10 that prosecutors came up with that essentially undermine this argument preemptively essentially, that, you know, the head of the Oath Keepers, Stewart Rhodes, is going to be making essentially that this was all about the Insurrection Act.
And I mean, it was a pretty devastating moment in court where they literally said, you know, this is the Insurrection Act was being used as legal cover. And how do we know it`s uses legal cover, hit play on the audio tape, there`s Stewart Rhodes saying we`re using the Insurrection Act, the Insurrection Act is a legal cover.
So, it was a pretty -- it was a pretty solid to the prosecutors there to sort of preempt that argument that they`re going to be making here, basically just saying that this was just -- you know, this was a basically a way to provide cover for what this illegal plan. You know, they pointed out to the jury that this -- you know, that Stewart Rhodes is a Yale- educated lawyer. He knew what he was doing.
And he`s also very careful about what words he says, and the language that he uses, which is why they had -- you know, it took so long potentially for them to charge because they really had to drill down and get a solid case together against the Stewart Rhodes because he was so careful and because he laid out his plan and he sort of comported it to this theoretical invocation of the Insurrection Act.
HAYES: Yes, it was interesting following the coverage today both from you, Ryan, from you, Glenn, and from others. Glenn, I mean, you can imagine, right, like a trial for say, you know, an assault or homicide, right, where the defense is going to dispute the main facts, right? So, the defense is going to say, you know, my client wasn`t actually at the apartment building where the murder happened, they were at this other place. Here`s the alibi and there`s a factual dispute about what -- you know, was he in the building.
In this case, it seems like a lot of the facts are pretty established that the legal defense for the Oath Keepers doesn`t seem like it`s going to be a lot of factual disputes like no, we didn`t bring the guns to the, you know, the Virginia hotel, no, we didn`t send those messages that you have in your possession from our phones, but rather, we did all that stuff and it wasn`t illegal. How does that work?
GLENN KIRSCHNER, MSNBC LEGAL ANALYST: In a word, it doesn`t work. And the thing is, not only is it a very strong case but, Chris, there`s so much direct evidence of guilt which frankly, is unusual. Usually, prosecutors have to build their cases on circumstantial evidence and ask the jurors to infer that the defendant did something or that the defendant intended something.
I sat there and listened to Assistant United States Attorney Jeffrey Nestler open and it was videotape after videotape and written communication after written communication. Rarely do we have crimes caught on video, but here, what Nestler promise the jurors would see and what he previewed for them in opening statements is we see the defendants breaching the Capitol, we see the defendants in the Capitol, we hear the defendants on tape, bragging about, "taking the Capitol."
So, you know, no case is a sure thing. Criminal litigators know that. But after I heard the openings and after I heard the openings from the defense attorneys, three of the five defense attorneys chose to open, the other two reserved which is unusual but not unprecedented. Defense attorneys don`t have to open at the beginning of their case. What they can do is assess the government`s case. And when the government rests, then they can decide to open, which has some pros and some cons.
So, we haven`t heard two of the openings yet. Presumably, we`ll hear them later in the trial. But based on what we did here, it seems to be a very strong case.
HAYES: Well, unto this point, Ryan, that Glenn just, you know, sketched out. There`s just a lot of evidence here. And it`s also the case that they were planning something, right? I mean, there`s just -- there`s no denying. You can`t say, well, we had nothing to do with that or there was no plan. Like, there was a plan. We know there was a plan, we know what they were doing, we know -- so, all of that is just there. They`ve got -- the different defense strategies here have to be how you kind of bend out of the way of that from a legal perspective, but there was clearly a plan.
REILLY: Yes, I think that`s true. I mean, with the, you know, the guns in Virginia, there`s not a lot you can really do to deny that in terms of like -- because there`s just so much evidence of what they were planning to do there. I do think that Stewart Rhodes, to a certain extent, can throw some of the other defendants under the bus because he himself doesn`t go inside the Capitol building. And I think that that`s basically the argument that they`re going to be making is, hey, look, my hands are clean, they did this of their own volition. Stack one and stack two went inside and in fact, I was angry after I heard they went inside.
So, that`s essentially the case that he can -- he can sort of be making here. I would be curious if we hear any pushback on that from some of the other defendants` attorneys about what those communications. But what we do know is that based on the evidence today that Stewart Rhodes is pretty amped about what happened afterwards. Of course, they infamously went to go celebrate at the Olive Garden afterwards in the night of January 6, but also in this January 10 phone call that prosecutors were playing.
You talked about, you know, I wish we had brought guns is what Stewart Rhodes has said there. So, that`s not certainly a condemnation of what happened on January 6. That`s wanting to escalate and wishing it went further than it did in terms of the Oath Keepers going inside the Capitol. They wish they`d won. They wish they took this over is essentially what prosecutors are arguing here, Chris.
HAYES: Yes. And that -- and Rhodes isn`t a different -- your point there an important one that he was never in the Capitol, which is part of what makes his seditious conspiracy prosecution so notable here, right? But there`s also, Glenn, the issue of the -- of the people who have already pleaded guilty. I mean, we don`t know what role they might play in this trial, but you`ve already got people who were a party to the conspiracy pleading to the federal crime of seditious conspiracy.
KIRSCHNER: Anytime you get insiders from a criminal organization who flipped who decide to plead guilty and they agree to cooperate in the prosecution, that is often some of the most compelling evidence because it`s one of their own. It`s an insider saying, I will tell you what I did, I`ll plead guilty to what I did, I`ll take responsibility for it, but then I`m going to tell you what my fellow conspirators did.
And you know, Stewart Rhodes didn`t go in the Capitol and as Ryan said he has already thrown his co-defendants under the bus. His attorney and opening said hey, they were off mission. And if Stewart had gotten into the capitol, that might be a whole different thing. You can almost feel the four defendants looking at Rhodes like, can you give us a little bit of help here.
But the other little nugget that we got about what Rhodes did after the capitol attack, he sent messages to Oath Keepers saying, delete your self- incriminating comments, delete your comments that incriminate other Oath Keepers, and delete your comments that incriminate the Oath Keepers organization itself. The problem is, Elmer didn`t delete his own incriminating comments. So, no one will accuse him of being, you know, a criminal mastermind.
HAYES: Yes, that`s always tough. That`s the last thing on the to do list sometimes, you know, doing your own thing. It`s easier to tell people what to do. Ryan Reilly, Glenn Kirschner, thank you very much.
Coming up, new revelation in the Ron DeSantis human trafficking scandal. Who was the woman? Who was she, the one who lured dozens of migrants across the country with lies? Thanks to some excellent reporting, we now have that answer. We know she was, next.
HAYES: It`s been nearly three weeks since Republican Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida flew almost 50 unsuspecting Venezuelan migrants including children from Texas to Florida, and then drop them off in an island off the coast of Massachusetts. In that time, his political stunt has sparked a criminal investigation in Bexar County, Texas led by the sheriff there and it leads to lawsuits. But apart from all that, the more we learned about the governor`s human trafficking scheme that were sketchy and troubling, it appears.
We know the flight was paid for with taxpayer money. About $1.5 million went to a politically connected Florida company for this flight, as well as other planned flights migrants. That company Vertol Systems has connections to top Florida Republicans including the current Public Safety Czar for Governor DeSantis.
But one of the central mysteries, one we`ve been looking at since the story first broke of all this has been who was the person known as Perla. That is the woman who essentially acted like a coyote. She was the one that went to San Antonio and lured migrants with $10.00 McDonald`s gift card saying sign this indemnification and a hotel stay and promises of jobs and housing to travel across the country before pulling a bait and switch and stranding them on an island in the Northeast.
Well, now, thanks to reporting in the New York Times, we know the identity of Perla and more about the false promises that were made.
Joining me now, one of those reporters who cracked open the story, Edgar Sandoval who writes about South Texas for the New York Times. Edgar, it`s great to have you on. It`s a great bit of reporting. You know, since this story first surfaced, the -- who is this woman? You know, she appears in all the accounts. She`s got to be out there somewhere. Who is she? You guys found out. Who is she?
EDGAR SANDOVAL, REPORTER, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Yes, so I mean, we learn about her name pretty early on after the story broke. And we spend more than two weeks trying to verify two different sources. And what we know so far is basically based on her military record, that she spent about 20 years in the military as counterintelligence and combat medic, and she was deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. And she was discharged fairly recently in August.
And, you know, efforts to reach her family members have not been successful. So, we were looking to learn more about her as well.
HAYES: So, she was -- I mean, she was a counterintelligence Army officer who is in -- just got -- just got back, right, from deployment?
SANDOVAL: That`s what it sounds like. That`s what we know from just looking at her military records.
HAYES: And what do we know of her connection to Vertol Systems and if she`s ever done this kind of thing before?
SANDOVAL: You know, all that we know right now is the governor of Florida took credit for the flights. And there was government investigation underway as we speak. So, I think we`re going to -- we`re going to learn pretty soon more about the direct connections and what happened. What we do know right now is that the city officials and everyone in San Antonio was cut pretty much off guard. That was a pretty stealthy operation, and they only learned about it in the news.
HAYES: Yes, that`s what was such a lightbulb moment when I read your reporting that she was former U.S. military counterintelligence. The operation was a strange operation I think it`s fair to say, I mean, no matter what you think of it, and was done in in not a particularly transparent fashion. It was a strange thing for a government agency to be doing. It seems like this woman was the one who was sort of coordinating the entire undertaking.
SANDOVAL: According to the migrants that we spoke with, that`s what they point to, you know. She showed up one day and say her name was Perla and was there to help them. And -- but many of them have no idea. Most of them had no idea that this was an operation allegedly organized by another government. Well, not allegedly because Mr. DeSantis admitted to it as much. But they just thought this would just be benefactors trying to help them.
HAYES: Yes, this is -- I just should note that the attorneys -- some of the attorneys in -- after your reporting, identified Perla, issued a statement saying once we`ve verified this information, we plan to amend our complaint to substitute Perla`s true name for Doe Defendant Number One because she`s named in the lawsuit. She will then be formally served with complaint required to respond in federal district court. The fact that Perla is apparently a former military operative and spy aligns with the allegations in the complaint, which describe a highly orchestrated plan based on secrecy, deceit, and misrepresentation.
In your reporting, you spoke to the migrants who reported -- and we`ve heard this from a number of them through various reporters who have spoken them feeling fundamentally duped that they had no idea how they ended up on this island when they got there.
SANDOVAL: That`s right. Many of them thought they were going to bus them. And so, when they were dropped to this little island, they were really, really also like, caught off guard. And then they were told to just knock on a door, there was somebody waiting for them. And when they did so and the person who opened the door had no idea who they were, why they were there, then they got really scared. And that`s when they realized that they were lied to.
HAYES: Yes, I want to read this, just this anecdote has really stuck with me. There`s been a number of these little details that just the penny drop moment for these folks who again, had this woman come up and said I can help you, there`s jobs, there`s opportunity, we`ll fly to Boston. And the penny drop moment when they realize something is wrong. They`ve been fooled. This is from the New York Times.
"Staff members at the community center in Martha`s Vineyard arranged for migrant named Pablo to call home to Venezuela. He appeared broken. My love, we were tricked. He told his wife, weeping uncontrollably. This woman lied to us. She lied." Do you suspect that we will hear from Perla herself at some point?
SANDOVAL: I think everyone -- everybody wants to hear from her, right, to hear about her motivations, what led her to allegedly lied to these migrants. Because everyone who talked to her, they really believed her. They thought she was going to help them. You know, they just spent like two months or more for many of them just going through an ordeal to get to United States and apply for asylum. So, by the time they met her, they were hungry, they would tired, you know, they were looking for a friendly hand.
HAYES: Edgar Sandoval who reported the story out at the New York Times and identified who Perla is, ex-military counterintelligence, thank you so much for your time tonight.
SANDOVAL: Thank you for having me, Chris.
HAYES: Still ahead, you`ve heard it before. He`s running for reelection by spreading conspiracy theories, threatening violence if he loses, except this time he`s the current president of Brazil. But voters there have another idea. That`s next.
HAYES: The results are in in Brazil`s high-stakes presidential election that happened this weekend. The far-right incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro, who some had hoped would lose resoundingly, managed to pull in enough support to send the race to a runoff. With nearly 100 percent of the vote in, Bolsonaro is at 43 percent while his challenger, former leftist President Lula da Silva, received 48 percent.
Now, Bolsonaro is probably the single most Trumpian figure in global politics today. And as you may remember, from their meetings when Trump was in the White House, they are quite enamored with each other.
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DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: -- the gentleman has won one of the greatest election leads anywhere in the world as far as I`m concerned. And he was very proud of his relationship with President Trump, the President of Brazil, and he`s a special man. I just want to welcome you and say thank you very much, my friend.
JAIR BOLSONARO, PRESIDENT, BRAZIL: It gives me great pleasure to be next to you, Mr. President. I have been a great admirer of you for quite some time, even before the election.
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HAYES: These two even have family ties. According to the Brazilian President, his son Eduardo is friends with Trump`s children, presumably his adult children, Don Jr, Eric, and Ivanka who are all around Eduardo`s age. The two presidents have taken a very similar approach to both campaigning and governing. In 2018, during Bolsonaro`s first campaign for president, he repeatedly encouraged his supporters to commit violence against his opponents supporters in the media. He said awful and disgusting things about his political opponents.
After he won the presidency, amidst the worst days in the COVID pandemic. Bolsonaro downplayed the severity of the disease, oversaw one of the world`s most disastrous responses to the virus. And recently, as he runs for reelection, Bolsonaro has been whipping up paranoid conspiracy theories about election fraud. In between, he`s proven himself to be basically an incompetent and he`s been intimating he could attempt a coup saying in a recent speech, "If need be, we will go to war."
So, that`s where Brazil is. They`re going to have a runoff between him and Lula in about a month. That`s what Brazil is four years after electing the so-called Trump of the tropics. Brazil, though is not the only country still reeling from this sort of Trumpian moment around that time, because six years ago, populist movement in the U.K. brought about the Brexit vote citing -- cutting the U.K. off from the European Union.
Since then, the U.K. has -- well, it hasn`t been smooth sailing over there. They`ve cycled through three prime ministers, the latest of whom, I don`t know if you`ve been paying attention to this, Liz Truss, is having a tough go of it. She began her tenure by announcing a wildly aggressive and regressive tax cut that would mostly benefit the rich. That announcement sent the pound plummeting to a record low against the dollar.
Truss is now having to reverse that decision. As her Chancellor of the Exchequer, basically, their sort of treasury minister explained today.
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KWASI KWARTENG, CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER, U.K.: I can be frank. I know the plan put forward only 10 days ago has caused a little turbulence. I get it. I get it. We are listening and have listened. And now, I want to focus on delivering the major parts of our growth package
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HAYES: In the wake of all that turmoil, support for the opposition Labour Party has surged. I mean, the pulling out of the U.K. right nuts. It`s not it`s up 33 points over the conservative. It`s the biggest polling lead by any U.K. party in more than two decades. And then, of course, here at home, some conservatives are not faring well in the polls either.
The latest NBC News poll found Donald Trump`s favorability rating hit its lowest point a year and a half, 34 percent, so a third of the country that`s got a positive view of the guy. And it`s funny because I think of these three things, these three major global events over the past six years, in my head is kind of being in the same category.
Obviously, there`s specific things happen in each country that brought them about, but Donald Trump`s victory in 2016, the Brexit vote that same year, and Jair Bolsonaro`s victory two years later, all kind of like a right-wing middle finger to tutting liberal establishment that thinks it knows better.
And in all three cases, in all three countries, we kind of ran the experiment. OK, blow it up. Screw you. You can`t look at any of these three countries and the outcomes and think that was not a disaster. And I really got to hope that at least enough people have learned their lesson.
HAYES: With 36 days out for the Midterm elections on November 8, in which party will control Congress, still an open question, coin flip homos. But one demographic that has traditionally favored Democrats is showing some movement away from Democrats towards Republicans. We got a new poll from NBC News and Telemundo that oversamples Latino voters so you can draw better conclusions in the normal cross tabs in this kind of polling.
And although a majority of Latino voters prefer Democrats to Republicans for the Midterms, 54 to 33, which is pretty big advantage, that democratic advantage is not as large as it once was. Back in 2012, 10 years ago, for instance, Latino voters preferred Democrats over Republicans by a 40-point margin, meaning that margin has been cut in half over 10 years. And you can kind of see those credit lines there, those two numbers converging.
Joining me now to digest what`s driving those numbers, Maria Teresa Kumar, President and CEO of the political organization Voto Latino. Maria, it`s great to have you. And part of the reason I wanted to do this segment is this data can be -- you know, polling data could be unreliable. But the New York Times did somewhat similar polling last week I think it was, a similar kind of oversample, so you take a group, you do a lot of polling with that group so you can draw more statistically accurate conclusions, and basically came up with some a fairly similar story, Democratic advantage cut down from years in the past. Are you convinced by that data? Do you think that`s an accurate reflection of what`s going on?
MARIA TERESA KUMAR, PRESIDENT AND CEO, VOTO LATINO: So, when you start digging in and asking these individuals -- Chris, first of all, thank you for having the segment because I think we what we need to do is deep dive in the Latino community and not do it as an afterthought. And what we have found at Voto Latino in extensive data, and just as you mentioned, Gallup did data that found very similar findings to ours, it wasn`t that Latinos were deflecting to the Republican Party, is that they couldn`t tell the difference between the two parties. So, full third of them are thinking of sitting out.
And if you dig into Telemundo data, it basically says that a whole third of them are thinking that they`re going to sit it out because they can`t tell the difference between the two parties. And so, one of the things that Voto Latino did was for the very first time, RC4 did persuasion work. If we were able to explain to Latino voter what the Democrats did in the short 18 months that Biden has been in office, would you see a difference?
Get this. Of the people that saw our ad, just one ad, compared to the -- compared to the placebo, there was a 14 percent lift. And that tells us, Chris, is that the Democrats are not communicating. And that was our finding. Now, if you look at a sister organization, NALEO, they found that just up to three weeks ago, 51 percent of registered Latino voters have not received any contact from a political party or candidate, 51 percent.
And when you`re talking about Latinos where the concentration will determine the Senate and the House when you`re looking at the concentration in Georgia, and even in North Carolina, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and Nevada. And even at state like Texas, you can come to the conclusion that the Democratic Party really needs to double down and do extra work.
And donors have to better understand what is happening at the grassroots level. People have to be far more curious about Latinos. I can tell you that even in a place like Texas, we found a poll when the -- after the Dobbs decision, and we found that 68 percent of Latino voters, including men, believe that abortion was a private issue between a woman and her doctor, not the government`s business. 81 percent believes in some sort of gun reform, including a ban -- assault banned weapons.
So, we`re -- we need to have more curiosity and not talk to Latinos 18 days out when all of a sudden they figure out that that`s when they need to talk to them.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, part of what`s striking to me about some of the Telemundo data and the New York Times data and what you were just mentioning here, we look at, for instance, issue topics, right? The economy is 80 percent and say -- it`s very important them. Abortion has gone up 15 points to 57 percent is that, you know, a lot of the cross-pressures in the electorate writ large, right? Like, people are frustrated with high inflation. And against the backdrop of high inflation, we`ve seen like real wages declining, people are frustrated the economy. And also, a vast majorities of Americans across all kinds of different demographics don`t want to see abortion criminalized and don`t like Roe being overturned.
So, there`s also just a certain degree to which a lot of the main stuff here doesn`t seem that different than some of the larger factors that are playing across the electorate as a whole.
KUMAR: That`s exactly right. The only thing that I would encourage folks to do when they look at the polls, and this is what we`re finding, the moment that you add MAGA Republican versus Democrat -- versus a Democrat in a Latino community, that immediately creates a deflection. People understand what MAGA means to their homes personally. It means not just their economy, but their personal safety.
And so, a place like Arizona, the reason that Mark Kelly is doing strongly is specifically because of the MAGA Republicans that were around before they had that coinage so to speak. It`s the same thing as what we`re starting to see in Nevada. It`s going to be a little harder in Pennsylvania because there hasn`t been enough outreach there but it`s going to be close.
HAYES: There`s this sort of question write about how much of what we`ve seen in these diminishing margins are failures at the Democratic Party in outreach which I`ve reported on, and I`ve interviewed people who say that the Democratic Party has not done a great job particularly in specific different communities in the Rio Grande Valley, in South Florida. There`s been -- there`s been different challenges. We saw that in 2008 election. And then part of it to just the, you know, different kinds of broader structural forces, particularly education polarization that again, are acting like physics on all different parts of the American electorate.
KUMAR: So, what you`re talking about, Chris, is this idea that Latinos are not a monolith. It`s absolutely true. We are not a monolith. But I would encourage the folks to think about Latinos as not a monolith more around generational lines and where they`re growing up. To give you an idea. Florida is the only state where young Latino voters will never surpass their older voters ever, just because of the demographics.
KUMAR: But in a state like Georgia, where -- in a state like Georgia, young voters are 30 percent of the Latino vote, 30 percent. And they represent 20 percent of the classrooms. So, you`re just going to have a whole bunch of young Latinos in Georgia graduating into electoral politics. I don`t need to convince that young person that climate change is real. I just need to convince politicians are actually going to meet them where they are.
The same thing in Arizona. In Arizona, there are 40 percent of the classrooms. In Texas, there are 52 percent of the classrooms.
HAYES: Wow, that -- those are all really, really striking bits of data. Yes, and I think, you know, it`s funny, we just did the Bolsonaro commentary. I mean, obviously, like, Latin American and South American politics are incredibly complex. And people run the gamut across the many countries throughout central South America. Like, there`s lots of conservatives. There`s very -- you know, there`s no reason to think like there`s some iron wall here. I mean, a lot of it has been the sort of partly immigration politics but also lives sort of general politics in the Republican Party. We`ll see how much those forces endure in this Midterm.
Maria Teresa Kumar, thank you very much.
KUMAR: Thank you so much for the conversation, Chris.
HAYES: All right, still to come, as the scandal surrounding Brett Favre`s alleged misuse of welfare money deepens, Favre hires a new lawyer, and it is this guy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HERSCHMANN: Now, I`m going to give you the best free legal advice you`re ever getting in your life. Get a great effing criminal defense lawyer. You`re going to need it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The Mississippi reporter who is detailed every step of this incredible story joins me next.
HERSCHMANN: I don`t want to hear any other effing words coming out of your mouth no matter what other than orderly transition. Repeat those words to me. And I figured that --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What did he say?
HERSCHMANN: Eventually he said orderly transition. I said good, John. Now, I`m going to give you the best free legal advice you`re ever getting in your life. Get a great effing criminal defense lawyer. You`re going to need it. And then I hung up on him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: It`s one of the more memorable moments the January 6 hearings when Trump White House lawyer Eric Herschmann shared his firsthand account of the coup-plotting he witnessed in the days before the insurrection and that -- the day afterwards. His deposition was made even more memorable for the baseball bat hanging on his wall emblazoned with the word justice.
Herschmann had been a staunch Trump defender representing the president in his first impeachment trial in the well of the Senate. Well, now Herschmann has a new client according to Axios. Eric Herschmann will be the new attorney for former NFL star Brett Favre in the Mississippi welfare fraud case he is embroiled in. And Favre certainly seems to be in need of a good lawyer as more and more revelations come out about his involvement in an effort, successful effort to use Mississippi state welfare funds to build a volleyball center at his alma mater Southern Miss where his daughter also attended and played volleyball.
Favre and his new lawyer say he did not know welfare dollars will be used in the project, though there are a handful of text messages from him that seemed to suggest otherwise. Favre has said he believes he did nothing wrong. The Mississippi Free Press put together this extensive timeline of efforts by Favre to help build not one but two volleyball facilities at schools his daughter attended, and how he went to shocking lengths to divert money, again, meant for the poor and sick to fund those projects.
Ashton Pittman is one of the reporters who put that timeline together, as well as offering a piece detailing what reporting and court filings revealed about Favre`s involvement and he joins me now. Ashton, I got to say, again, Favre is not facing any criminal charges though other people involved in this fraud case have already pleaded guilty. But every new detail just seems to show a level of involvement and determination by Favre to get this money that is not like a casual undertaking.
ASHTON PITTMAN, SENIOR REPORTER, MISSISSIPPI FREE PRESS: Right. We see, you know, through the texts that have come out, we can see that Brett Favre was -- he was looking for a lot of ways to pay for this. And we know that starting in 2017 which was the year that his daughter was going to graduate high school and started the University of Southern Mississippi, which is his alma mater, that`s when he started really pushing for help funding this volleyball stadium at Southern Miss.
And from, you know, from everything we`ve seen, he had actually pledged to, you know, give the money to fund the stadium himself. So, then we suddenly though see and these texts to Governor Phil Brian, going back to April 2017, Brett Favre is talking about, you know, getting help with fundraising and sponsorships. He`s talking about all sorts of ways to pay for it. And at one point, he even mentioned the possibility of prison industry labor.
So, we so we`re looking at this -- and it`s it doesn`t start out with -- you know, Brett Favre isn`t it -- doesn`t come into the saying, you know, I want some welfare money to build a volleyball stadium. He`s kind of just like, you know, from what we see in these texts, he`s looking for any kind of help he can get in any way he can come to pay for this stadium that he had apparently pledged to pay the bill himself.
HAYES: Yes. If that sequence of facts is important, because the last time we did that story, I don`t think that was yet so clear -- and it was it was so strange, right? Like, why is -- he`s a very wealthy man. He could write a check. I mean, this is the kind of thing that very wealthy people do. It`s like, well, my kid is going to school. I`m going to give you a big check for it.
What becomes clear is that basically, that`s the agreement need struck, and we get -- we learn that from these texts. This is the president of his alma mater, USM, University of Southern Mississippi says -- and he`s texting with the governor, right? He says the bottom line is he personally guaranteed the project and on his word and handshake we proceeded. It`s time for him to pay up. It really is just that simple. And then, later on Rodney Bennett, then-President, says that`s my thoughts. Maybe he wants the state to pay off his promises like all of us. I like Brett. He is a legend, but he has to understand what a pledge means. I have tried many times to explain that to him.
So, it seems like he makes this pledge, he makes his promise, then he just doesn`t want to pony up the money. And that sends him on this bizarre Odyssey to find a way to pay for it that someone else`s money.
PITTMAN: Right. And you can -- you can see from the text that Governor Phil Bryant released in a recent court filing. You know, from everything we`ve seen so far, we haven`t seen an indication of Brett Favre definitely knew that the money was temporary assistance for needy families which, you know, a family of three would have to make less than $600 (INAUDIBLE) children to get in Mississippi.
We haven`t seen a text that says he knew exactly what that money was. But we know he knew that it was at least coming from the Department of Human Services, right? So, we also from these texts, you know, we don`t know for sure that, you know, what Governor Phil Bryant knew and when he knew it. We do know -- we don`t see Governor Phil Bryant apparently realizing that state funds are being used for this, at least in the text messages until July 2019.
By that point, he`s already informed the auditor that the head of the Department of Human Services might be doing some -- you know, committing some illegal activity using state funds. So, if you if you look at the timeline of events, it`s just -- you know, there`s still questions about who knew what, when. But it`s also clear that you know, Brett Favre didn`t like the idea of people knowing that he was getting money at least from a nonprofit for this purpose.
HAYES: Yes, he asked whether it can come out. There`s also clear indication that Phil Bryan, the governor, at one point says, we`re going to get this done Brett, but we got to do it legally, I`m too old for federal prison. Like, Phillip Bryant is aware that there are some laws guard -- guiding whether you can take federal welfare dollars for the poorest people in the poorest state of the union to go get your daughter a fancy new volleyball facility and seems aware there`s probably some compliance issues with that.
The other thing that`s wild here is this appears to be the second time that he used charity money or money that you would think would go to other purposes for volleyball facility for his daughter, reporting that the nonprofit tax records show that his foundation Favre4Hope, sent $60,000 to the booster club of suburban Oak Grove, which is the high school that his daughter was playing at before she went to USM where they were playing volleyball.
So, you could sort of see where the idea might be planted in his head. Like, maybe we can tap some charity money.
PITTMAN: Right. And you`ve got to -- you`ve got to also know about Oak Grove High School. Mississippi is a state where a lot of schools are in really bad shape. They don`t get great funding. Oak Grove High School is one of the best funded schools in Mississippi. So, it`s really interesting, you know, seeing even if there was nothing wrong with the expenditure of that money for the Oak Grove stadium, it`s just -- you just see this pattern of you know, Brett Favre`s daughter goes to goes to a school and it gets a volleyball facility. Well, she`s at LSU now. She actually moved there, started there in August. So, you know, maybe we should look at LSU and see if they`re going to get a facility.
HAYES: Yes. I think it`s -- yes, we should probably have some reporters looking at the volleyball facilities in Baton Rouge. Ashton Pittman who`s been doing good reporting on this, thank you very much.
PITTMAN: Thank you.
HAYES: That`s ALL IN on this Monday night. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.