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Transcript: All In with Chris Hayes, 7/20/22

Guests: Miles Taylor, Tanya Miller, James Helminski, Mondaire Jones


Former President Donald Trump asked a top Wisconsin Republican to overturn the 2020 election last week. The Justice Department speaks out as January 6 hearings returned to primetime and the disgraced ex-president who fomented a coup continues to foment a coup. A federal judge is telling Rudy Giuliani he`s got to testify before a special grand jury in Georgia. Lindsey Graham agrees to accept the Georgia subpoena.


JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: But for now, stay right there because ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES starts right now.


CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voiceover): Tonight on ALL IN.

MERRICK GARLAND, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: This is the most wide-ranging investigation and most important investigation that the Justice Department has ever entered.

HAYES: The Justice Department speaks out as January 6 hearings returned to primetime and the disgraced ex-president who fomented a coup continues to foment a coup.

ROBIN VOS, STATE REPRESENTATIVE, WISCONSIN: He would like us to do something different in Wisconsin. I explained that it`s not allowed under the Constitution.

HAYES: Tonight what we`re hearing about tomorrow`s hearing from someone who is inside the Trump White House.

Then, the former Deputy Assistant Director of the Secret Service on why he suspects malicious intent in the text message purge.

Plus, Rudy Giuliani ordered to testify in Georgia as we learn more about the targets of the investigation.

Some epic cringe from Republican senators forced to take a position on same-sex marriage.

SEN. BILL CASSIDY (R-LA): This is such a silly messaging bill. I`m just not going to address that.

HAYES: And how one bad candidate could keep those Republican senators from taking control when ALL IN starts right now.


HAYES (on camera): Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. Tomorrow night at exactly this time, the January 6 Committee will convene its second primetime hearing. We`ll be, of course, airing it here live on MSNBC, including special coverage afterwards. This hearing is going to focus on the one man responsible for the attempted coup and insurrection Donald Trump.

And as we head towards that hearing, two things have never been clearer in my mind. First, that it was Trump`s plan all along to overturn the will of the voters and the American public to fire a bullet into the heart of American democracy to use any means necessary, force if it took that, to install himself as ruler of the United States. Second, that is quite literally still the plan right now. And I don`t mean that in an abstract sense, like he still wants to be president No, Donald Trump tried this month in July of 2022 to overturn the 2020 election.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A state lawmaker describes a new attempt by former President Donald Trump to pressure Wisconsin Republicans to decertify the state`s presidential results. 12 News` Matt Smith is joining us now live. Matt, the new account is coming from Assembly Speaker Robin Vos.

MATT SMITH, REPORTER, WSIN 12 NEWS: Vos telling us in an interview for Upfront. Trump called him last week just after the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling declaring absentee ballot Dropbox is illegal in the state. That phone call happening. Then, Vos says Trump blasting him on social media.

When`s the last time you talked to the former president, President Trump?

VOS: Within the last week.

SMITH: In the last week?

VOS: Yes.

SMITH: Before or after he tweeted about --

VOS: Before.

SMITH: What was that conversation like?

VOS: It was one of those that -- it`s very consistent. He makes his case which I respect. He would like us to do something different in Wisconsin. I explained that it`s not allowed under the Constitution. He has a different opinion and he put the tweet out. So, that`s it. Yes.

SMITH: The former President`s most recent attempt to pressure Wisconsin Republicans to decertify Wisconsin`s 2020 results. Now coming after the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled the use of absentee ballot drop boxes is illegal.

VOS: The court case as you read it does not go back and say what happened in 2020 was illegal. It just says going forward, it can`t happen.


HAYES: I mean, first of all, how surreal is that interview, this speaker of the Wisconsin house being like, oh, well, you know, he called me he`s very consistent. He makes his point that he would like to functionally install himself as dictator for life. You know, I said, you can`t do it. We just continued on. Does anyone think he is no longer a threat to our democracy?

Nearly two hours -- two years after he lost reelection, Donald Trump is still, still trying to overturn the results. Now, on the one hand, this is delusional the point where one might genuinely question the ex-president`s mental fitness. On the other hand, in a weird way, it`s almost rational. It kind of makes sense from Trump`s perspective because he has still suffered no consequence for his attempted coup.

Let`s be clear. We`ve said it many times on this show. Donald Trump almost got away with it. If he had been able to go to the Capitol during the insurrection like you wanted at the head of the armed mob, if he had been able to browbeat Mike Pence into refusing to certify the results, well, who knows what might have happened?

So, yes, he`s going to keep trying. That`s what makes these January 6 hearing so important because you have an entire party, the Republicans, as embodied by Speaker Vos there that just continue to politely indulge Trump`s continue anti-democratic cravings in this bizarre, polite, submissive, often humiliating way.


I mean the Republican Wisconsin assembly speaker who you just heard recounting the crazy ask Trump made to him last week and said "he makes his case, which I respect." I don`t respect it, just me. So, of course, Trump will continue trying because he has not suffered any consequences for his continued attempts.

And an indictment of the ex-president from the Department of Justice, though clearly plausible given the facts we already know -- I mean, not saying he would be convicted or it`s a clear-cut case, but plausible, right? An indictment is quite far from guaranteed. Although, although, take a listen to what Attorney General Merrick Garland said today, which makes it sound like the DOJ investigation is ongoing.


GARLAND: The central tenant of the way in which the Justice Department investigates as central tenant for the rule of law is that we do not do our investigations in public. This is the most wide-ranging investigation and the most important investigation that the Justice Department has ever entered into. And we have done so because this represents this effort to upend a legitimate election, transferring power from one administration to another cuts at the fundamental of American democracy, we have to get this right.

And for people who are concerned as I think every American should be about protecting democracy, we have to do two things. We have to hold comfortable, every person who is criminally responsible for trying to overturn a legitimate election. And we must do it in a way filled with integrity and professionalism, the way the justice department conducts investigations. Both of these are necessary in order to achieve justice and to protect our democracy.


HAYES: So, that`s where the Justice Department is. We don`t really know where they are, to be totally honest. But without any real certainty on DOJ indictments and I think that`s just a completely open question, no one really knows right? And Donald Trump`s still call around being like, hey, can we get an election overthrow, fellows?

We are left with this committee, with the select committee, the January 6 Committee night in night out, day in day out attempting to spell out to everyone just how dire the threat to our democracy was, and perhaps more importantly, how dire it remains.

Now, tomorrow`s hearing will focus on Trump`s conduct during the insurrection itself. We already know a lot about that. Trump wanted to, according to testimony, lead the mob when they stormed the Capitol. And the Secret Service stopped them. Again, according to testimony, he cedes and he pouted. It`s entirely possible that in that moment, he realized he wasn`t going to be able to stay president. Because he thought if he could lead the mob to sack the Capitol, then he win, right? Of course, that`s why he`s still trying to overturn the election.

Tomorrow night, we`re going to hear from two witnesses who both resigned from the Trump White House on the sixth, Deputy National Security Adviser Matthew Pottinger, and Deputy Press Secretary and Trump 2020 spokesperson Sarah Matthews. We`ve actually already seen a small preview of what we might hear from both witnesses tomorrow, as the committee has previously shared some of their recorded closed doors testimony.


SARAH MATTHEWS, FORMER WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: We had all talked about at that point about how it was bad and the, you know, situation was getting out of hand. We thought that the President needed to tweet something and tweet something immediately. We all got a notification, so we knew it was a tweet from the President. And we looked down and it was a tweet about Mike Pence. It felt like he was pouring gasoline on the fire by tweeting that.

MATTHEW POTTINGER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: The tweet said something to the effect that Mike Pence, the Vice President, didn`t have the courage to do what he -- what should have been done. I read that tweet and made a decision at that moment to resign. That`s where I knew that I was leaving that day.


HAYES: Both Matthews and Pottinger saw the insurrection for what it was in the moment on that day. And they joined the legions of people who provided some of the worst, most cutting characterizations of Donald Trump for the years. And those are the people who worked closely with him, know him best, have seen him clearly, and have seen clearly what an active danger he is to our democracy. And it`s long been a pattern with Donald Trump well before to January 6.

I remember that anonymous op-ed that got a lot of attention from the New York Times from back in 2018. I am part of the resistance inside the Trump administration where a then-unnamed Trump staffer wrote, "We believe our first duty is to the country. The President continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our Republic. That is why many Trump appointees have vowed to do what we can to preserve our democratic institutions while thwarting Trump`s more misguided impulses until he is out of office."

Now, that was a polarizing, controversial op-ed for a bunch of reasons. Whatever you think of the moral calculation embedded in that op-ed of anonymously blowing the whistle on a president you believe is unfit to serve while continuing to work for him, it was pretty prophetic insofar as it basically is how much of the Trump administration played out particularly the last 35 days, last 40 days, right up to and including on January 6, as we will hear tomorrow.

Miles Taylor is the author of that anonymous op-ed, the follow-up book A Warning. He served as Chief of Staff for the Department of Homeland Security during the Trump administration. He resigned in June of 2019, has since left the Republican Party, is now the co-founder and executive director of the Renew America Movement. And he joins me now.

Miles, it`s good to have you on. First, I wonder if you could talk a little bit about this perspective that I think we`re going to hear from Matt -- Sarah Matthews and Matthew Pottinger tomorrow of people who stayed longer, much longer than you did, but who on the day had the clarity of exactly what was unfolding before them?

MILES TAYLOR, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY: Well, Chris, I think the important thing to say up front is what you alluded to in your opening, which is that we knew who this man was, right? There was - - we didn`t need an insurrection at the United States Capitol behind me to tell us this was a man whose intrinsic impulses were towards illegality and immorality and actions ultimately that were unconstitutional. That was evident.

I mean, a year before the insurrection, I wrote that, even if Trump lost, he would not leave quietly or easily. And he was already seeding the narrative that coups were afoot and a Civil War was in the offing. And it was a narrative he was seeking for his followers that would end tragically. And it did end tragically, Chris.

Now, look, to the moral judgment of how long to stay, that`s everyone`s decision who was in there. I went into that administration knowing that it was already a turbulent presidency, and that people needed to go in to try to stabilize it. My calculus was the point at which you realize you were not able to put Donald Trump`s bad ideas back in the box was when it was time to go, right, when saying no was no longer enough.

However, I knew Sarah and I knew Matt. Both are good public servants. And I`m actually grateful that both of those individuals stayed until the end of that administration. Why? Because we know that when Donald Trump replaced people like them, the very last remaining adults in the room, he replaced them with incompetent advisors.

You know, Matt, in particular, I know to be an exceptional national security professional, a former United States Marine, and someone that really was one of the last steady hands on the wheel. I`m glad he stayed until when he did. I`m glad Sarah stayed until when she did. But what I think is really interesting and what will be interesting about their testimony is not how they describe what happened in those 187 minutes, but how they will describe what did not happen during those 187 minutes, Chris.

HAYES: Yes, it`s an interesting -- you know, it`s an interesting point. I have very sort of conflicted feelings about. It`s a little like the old philosophy -- you know, intro to moral philosophies, trolley problem, right, where you -- you`re sitting there, and there`s a trolley headed down the tracks, and it will hit five people on one track and 10 on the other, right? So, it`s a sort of question of the least bad option, which is a lot of what was confronting people at that time.

Am I -- you know, am I glad Pat Cipollone said no, don`t do a coup. Yes. Like, good he was there to do that. And to your point, you know, there was the other option which is like the real bottom of-the-barrel folks, the kind of pro-coup camp. You know, Peter Navarro and his staffer, for instance, this individual Garrett Ziegler -- I don`t know where he was in the coup, but I can into it. Here he is. I want to just play this for you for a sense of the quality of some of the people that are in that White House.

This is the individual who apparently left -- let in that kind of rogues gallery to the White House to plot the coup. Here he is after giving testimony to the committee tomorrow -- yesterday talking about the committee. Take a listen.


GARRETT ZIEGLER, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE AIDE: They`re Bolsheviks, so they probably do hate the American founders and most white people in general. This is a Bolshevistic anti-White campaign. If you can`t see that, your eyes are freaking closed. And so, they see me as a young Christian who they can try to basically scare, right?


HAYES: I should note that that was live streamed on this individual`s telegram after he gave his testimony. This is him in his own words. He would later go on to refer to Hutchinson and some of the other female staffers as disparaging, were hoe bags and things like that, really nasty disgusting stuff.

But to your point, you know, for every Sarah Matthews or Matthew Pottinger leaves, like it was a -- it was a Garrett Ziegler who`s going to be in there right after that.


TAYLOR: You`re absolutely right, Chris. And you know, if Garrett Ziegler wants to cite history, I`m going to cite history in response. If you go back to the 1940s, Friedrich Hayek wrote a book called The Road to Serfdom, right? He wrote a book about how Nazi-ism came to be, how totalitarianism rose in Europe. And one of the chapters in his book is titled, "Why the worst rise to the top."

This is almost 100 years ago, he wrote about how Garrett Ziegler types go from nobodies to rising to the very top of these types of administrations. And why those people of deficient moral character ultimately are the ones left in the end. Now, this was also foreseeable, Chris. And again, a year before the end of the administration, many of us were saying that in the end game, it was this bottom-of-the-barrel crew, this island of incompetent child soldiers that were running the United States federal government. That is who was running the United States federal government.

Garrett worked in the office of Peter Navarro. I know Peter. Peter was the guy that launched a manhunt thinking he was Sherlock Holmes trying to figure out who anonymous was. Instead of being Sherlock Holmes, he turned out to be the keystone cops because he pointed the finger at every wrong person and ruin people`s lives.

It was one of the reasons, Chris, that I ultimately said, I need to unmask myself and go out publicly. People need to be saying this in their own names. Now, look, you can judge Sarah and Matt for waiting until January 6 to step forward. We can have the recriminations later. What I care about now is that they are stepping up at a moment of truth.

And this is what the committee hoped would happen after Cassidy Hutchinson testified is that it would be the push of a domino to get others to come forward. And this is what needs to happen if we`re going to prevent something like this from ever occurring again.

HAYES: Yes. I basically agree with you on that -- on that point. Miles Taylor, thank you very much.

TAYLOR: Thanks, Chris.

HAYES: Coming up, the Georgia election investigation continues to pick up steam. A federal judge telling Rudy Giuliani he`s got to testify, and even more Republicans are told they could be indicted. We`ll tell you who next.



HAYES: Last week, Rudy Giuliani who was Donald Trump`s personal lawyer failed to show up at a hearing before a judge in Manhattan, the city where he lives, about potential 2020 election interference in Georgia by Trump and others. So, today, that same judge ordered Giuliani to appear in Atlanta, Georgia next month before a special grand jury, which is all part of the ongoing criminal investigation being led by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. And this is just one of the many new developments in that election probe.

Tanya Miller is a former Fulton County Assistant D.A., federal prosecutor, is currently running unopposed for the Georgia State House. And she joins me now. Great to have you on. I guess first, the Giuliani ruling from the New York City -- New York judge seems like a good development from the Fulton County DA perspective.

TANYA MILLER, FORMER ASSISTANT D.A., FULTON COUNTY: Yes. And I think what`s most interesting about that, Chris, is that he didn`t even bother to show up at the hearing. So, it doesn`t seem like he really put up any meaningful fight to have that subpoena actually quash. Look, no judge is going to quash a subpoena if you don`t even show up, bother to show up to come in and explain yourself, explain why you think the subpoena is overly burdensome or perhaps you shouldn`t -- you weren`t properly served by it, or your information isn`t particularly relevant to the investigation, all the things that are available to you to argue when you`ve been subpoenaed. It doesn`t sound like he came to court himself to do that.

So, we don`t know if the court denied the subpoena based on that, or based on the merits of any arguments he could have made. But essentially what we know is that Rudy Giuliani has to show up in Fulton County and appear before the citizens of this special purpose grand jury.

HAYES: We`ve got two sitting members of Congress who have also received subpoenas, Lindsey Graham of the United States Senate and Jody Hice who is a Georgia Congressman. They`ve both basically objected and essentially moved to object to it and move it into federal court because they think they have essentially Federal claims for why they don`t have to respond.

Graham agreed to accept service of the subpoena for his testimony before the grand jury but he still retained his right to challenge the legality of the subpoena, a court filing showed. I guess, your question, as someone who worked in that office, I mean, this stuff is not simple or straightforward subpoenaing members of Congress. I imagine, you know, there`s going to have to put a real argument here together to litigate this and get this -- and get the subpoena.

MILLER: Definitely, Chris. I mean, look, this is unchartered territory for this district attorney. She is a newly elected District Attorney, but a very experienced prosecutor. What essentially the federal witnesses or subjects or receivers of the subpoena are arguing is that they are entitled to a certain immunity that applies to legislators for what they do when they are legislating. It`s official -- it`s essentially an official work privilege.

The question will be whether or not the allegations that the district attorney is investigating, interference in the 2020 election, can lawfully or legally or reasonably considered official acts of a legislator. So, it`s sort of an ironic position to take, and certainly one a federal judge will have to decide in this case. I`m not surprised that they`re raising it. I`d be surprised if anybody bought it.


HAYES: So, finally, a big new development on this. And this is from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution which is doing great reporting on this, that the sham GOP electors, right -- these are the alternate electors who are not duly chosen -- that they face potential charges. Court filings Tuesday indicated all 16 phony Georgia Republican electors have been informed they could face criminal charges. The filings were latest signal that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is investigation circling GOP electors who gathered at the State Capitol in December 2020. That strikes me as a pretty big deal, because we know the federal government is also looking into that.

MILLER: Yes. I mean, this is -- this is actually a really big deal. And what I think is most interesting about it is the issuance of the actual target letter. Target letters are not often used in state investigations. They are a tool that are primarily used by federal prosecutors when they`re conducting federal grand jury investigations.

In this case, the district attorney has given target letters to folks, some of whom have already given statements. They claimed that they gave the statements under the belief that they were witnesses. And now the DA is surprising them by changing their category to target. And perhaps that`s the reason why she issued the target letter to signal to them, listen, whatever you thought, in the beginning, when we were starting this investigation, that has changed.

This investigation has proceeded forward, we have gotten new evidence and more information as you would expect the grand jury to get when they`re constantly working and investigating. And now, you are in a different category. And we are giving you this courtesy so that you can talk to a lawyer, you can intelligently decide whether or not you want to assert a fifth amendment privilege. You have all of the options available to you if perhaps you also want to cooperate in this investigation. Perhaps there`s an opportunity to explore that.

So, what this is saying to me, Chris, is that this -- and what she said, Fani has said, this investigation is serious and anyone who thinks that she is not, that this is for show, is definitely not paying attention to what`s happening here on the ground.

HAYES: Yes, I`ve definitely have converted to that view through her actions and words. Tanya Miller, thank you very much.

MILLER: Thanks, Chris.

HAYES: Still to come, a new report The Secret Service was warned multiple times to preserve their texts and still didn`t do it. I`ll talk to a former high-ranking Secret Service official about just what the heck happened next.



HAYES: The Secret Service missed a deadline yesterday failing to produce the deleted text messages subpoenaed by the January 6 Committee. Today NBC News reports that "agency employees receive two emails at least one prior to January 6, 2021 reminding them to preserve records on their cell phones, including text messages before their devices were essentially restored to factory settings and texts were lost as part of the planned reset and replacement program across the agency.

A senior Secret Service official tells NBC News that a third e-mail sent on February 4, 2021 instructed agents to specifically preserved documents relating to January 6. Yet somehow all of those text messages except one were deleted. Oops. In a letter, the Secret Service notify the committee it was turning over a single text from January 6, a message from the former chief of the US Capitol Police requesting assistance during the attack.

The January 6 Committee released a statement in response saying, "The procedure for preserving content prior to this purge appears to have been contrary to Federal Records Retention Requirements and may represent a possible violations of the Federal Records Act.

Jim Helminski is the former Deputy Assistant Director of the U.S. Secret Service who served under Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama. And he joins me now. Jim, great to have you on. I am anxious to talk to someone who knows the agency. As someone watching this develop, what is your reaction to what we`ve learned?

JAMES HELMINSKI, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, U.S. SECRET SERVICE: Well, Chris, the motto of the United States Secret Service is being worthy of trust and confidence. And in this situation, the U.S. Secret Service was at odds with the Office of Inspector General from the beginning. They were very recalcitrant of providing them any documents to which to the point the inspector general had to go up to the subcommittee and complain about the fact that the Inspector General was not getting any replies to his requests for these documents.

And then the subcommittee sends out a request to the Secret Service and telling him that -- telling them to hang on to these documents. And then several weeks later, the Secret Service sends out a message to their -- to their agents to retain these documents. And then, the only thing that they get back is one email of which should be multiple emails.

Now, I`ve been with the Secret Service for 27 years. I ran the Seattle office, which has a large electronic crimes unit, and I understand what the Secret Service capabilities are. And this has a sense of being a certain degree of malicious intent. And if you have -- as an agency, if you have a choice between malicious intent and being a inept, I would choose the inept.


HAYES: Yes. I mean, I guess the question is, if it`s inept, which it might be, and obviously, I don`t know, it`s stunningly inept. I mean, you know, migrations happen all the time, not just in the federal government, but in all kinds of large enterprises. The first step for any migration is a backup. You know, plus, on top of that, there`s the federal bureaucracy has records requirements for backing things up as well.

And so, if they really just, like, send out a few warnings and be like, hey, turn stuff over if you think and that was it. That`s just wildly contrary to what the records protocol should be, right.

I think he`s frozen. I think we might have lost Jim`s shot which is a bummer. I was glad to have Jim Helminski on who worked at the Secret Service for years. But hopefully, we can get him back maybe later on this story. We`re trying now. OK, I`ll cut off the suspense for you at home watching to see if we will get a frozen shot.

So, let`s go to break and see what we`re going to do next. Well, we`ll be right back.


HAYES: We were not able to get Jim Helminski`s shot back. Hopefully, Secret Service has more luck with recovering this text messages, but we`ll have Jim back on the program to discuss soon. In other news, one of the more key Senate races this November is in the state of Pennsylvania. It`s between Democrat John Fetterman and Republican Mehmet Oz. It`s pretty incredible matchup for a bunch of reasons. It`s obviously very contested, difficult political environment, swing state.

And in this environment, Democrats have put up an almost perfect candidate, at least from the sheer perspective of vibes. This is a guy who seen by many and I think rightly as a kind of archetype for the state of Pennsylvania. On the other side, Republicans have nominated a multimillionaire TV doctor who actually does not live in Pennsylvania. He lives in northern New Jersey, not even southern Jersey, which is you could argue, close to Pennsylvania.

As People Magazine wrote in this piece highlighting his six-bedroom, eight- bathroom mansion, it has views overlooking the Manhattan skyline. In fact, Dr. Oz is so unfamiliar with the state he is currently running represent a local political reporter, a caught that his campaign misspelled his supposedly hometown, writing Huntington Valley rather than Huntingdon Valley.

Oz even voted in the 2018 Turkish election, appearing in this image posted on the Facebook page for the New York Turkish consulate. That`s as recently as 2018. So, he has been far from an ideal candidate for the people of the Keystone State. But here`s the thing. Fetterman recently, you might remember, right before the primary, had this bad health scare, right?

He suffered a stroke back in May, took them off the trail. He said in one of the statements that he could have died. His wife told him to go to the doctor, and he`s had a recovery. And during that recovery, he`s been off the trail but he has taken a social media just absolutely hammering home the fact that Oz has basically nothing to do with Pennsylvania. There is no reason for this to be the senator from Pennsylvania.

A few weeks ago, I was posted this video criticizing the Democratic mayor of Philadelphia. Fetterman quickly pointed out that it appeared the video was filmed in that North Jersey mansion. Nice bookshelf there between those very, very nice windows. Fetterman then hired planes to fly over the Jersey Shore with a banner reading, Hey, Dr. Oz. Welcome home to New Jersey.

And when Oz made the obligatory Philly trip to two cheesesteak restaurants, Pat`s and Geno`s, Fetterman burned him by calling it "A rite of passage for every tourist." Then there was this amazing cameo that Fetterman commissioned by a very recognizable New Jersey face.


NICOLE POLIZZI, T.V. PERSONALITY: I don`t know why anyone would want to leave Jersey because it`s like the best place ever and we`re all hot misses. But I want to say best of luck to you. I know you`re away from home and you`re in a new place but Jersey will not forget you. I just want to let you know. I will not forget you. And don`t worry because you`ll be back home in Jersey soon. This is only temporary. So, good luck. You got this and Jersey loves you.


HAYES: By the way, the funniest part of that cameo is to imagine that she had no idea that it was going to be used in the campaign. It was just like oh, a message for my friend who`s from Jersey. The trolling is literally nonstop. In fact, just today, Oz tweeted this amazing image trying to tie Fetterman to Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Fetterman responded with this graphic design, this is my passion tweet. Just the latest in Fetterman`s unceasing campaign to clobber his opponent who again has no reason to be the senator from Pennsylvania. Now, Fetterman says he is ready to get back on the trail, getting an interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette today trying to put Democratic minds at ease ahead of November about where his health is at. So, we`ll see if he can continue to absolutely roast Oz IRL. I think the odds are pretty good.




SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX): There`s no doubt that a great many Americans support changing marriage laws to have them apply to same-sex marriage. And we were seeing the democratic process operate.


CRUZ: I support the Constitution and letting the democratic process operate.


HAYES: Pro-democratic process Senator Ted Cruz. For years, Republican politicians like Ted Cruz have gotten away with being neither for nor against marriage equality for LGBTQ folks. It`s because in 2015, the Supreme Court quite famously, made marriage equality the law of the land and found a constitutional right for people to marry the person they loved. And it was no longer than a live political issue.

And because voters support it by a massive margin, 2-1 in most of the polls, Republicans were kind of off the hook. But now, in the wake of the radical right-wing Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade and 50 years of precedent and crucially, Justice Clarence Thomas explicitly calling to overturn the case that made marriage equality the law of the land, Republicans in the Senate and the Congress are now having to pick a side. Because you see, yesterday, Democrats in the House brought up a bill that would federally protect existing same sex marriages, make states recognize marriages from other states, and also repeal the odious Defense of Marriage Act.

The bill passed with a big bipartisan majority 267 to 157, 157 Republicans voted against which means most House Republicans voted against it. But again, 47 voted for it. So, that bill now comes to the Senate, which is why Senate Republicans are suddenly so squirrely on the issue.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Codify same-sex marriage. Would you support that?

SEN. TODD YOUNG (R-IN): Right now, I`m focused on the chips legislation. I haven`t -- I haven`t read that bill. The details are really important. So, I feel more comfortable answering it after I read the legislation.

CASSIDY: It`s a pure messaging bill. I mean, it`s obviously settled law right now.


CASSIDY: Again, I`m it`s such a silly messaging bill. I`m just not going to address it.

SEN. BEN SASSE (R-NE): I`m not answering questions that are about hypotheticals that are just Pelosi trying to divide America with culture wars.


HAYES: Here`s the thing. Because there`s overwhelming support for this, the bill could clear the 60 vote filibuster threshold that could get 10 Republican votes and then become law. The President can sign it. It`s really a rare example of what going on offense on "social or cultural issues" looks like, particular when you have public opinion in your favor. You press the advantage. And here, either Republicans vote against this wildly popular provision, or you enshrined people`s marriages into law or both.

Yesterday Democratic Congressman Mondaire Jones, one of just a few openly gay members of Congress, took to the floor to introduce the House bill in a moving and personal speech. Take a look.


REP. MONDAIRE JONES (D-NY): I am one of only nine openly gay members of this body. For me, this is personal. I still remember where I was on June 24, 2011. The day the New York State Legislature passed marriage equality. I was living with my friends in New York City, but I was still closeted, and I was so afraid still that someone might find out the truth about my being gay. So instead, I closed the door to my room and cried tears of joy by my lonesome.

Finally, my home state of New York had recognized me as a full human being affirmed all of those scary yet beautiful feelings that I had bottled up inside for decades wondering, hoping one day that the world would change. Four years later, the Supreme Court`s decision in Obergefell sent the same message to millions.

Since Obergefell, nearly 300,000 same-sex couples have been married. Imagine telling the next generation of Americans, my generation, that we no longer have the right to marry who we love. Congress can`t allow that to happen.


HAYES: And Congressman Mondaire Jones who gave that speech, Democrat of New York joins me now.

Congressman, it`s great to have you. I really appreciate what you had to say on the floor. Maybe you could start by responding to Senator Cassidy`s characterization that this bill is a "silly messaging bill." What do you think of that?

JONES: There`s nothing silly about protecting fundamental rights in this country. So many of my Republican colleagues over in the United States Senate have suggested in the past few days that these precedents set by the Supreme Court are settled. But of course, we know that the right to an abortion was settled law for 50 years until it wasn`t.

And Justice Clarence Thomas, in his concurring opinion, was honest in setting his sights and the sights of the majority on the Supreme Court, that far-right six-three majority on the Supreme Court on other fundamental rights, like the right to marriage equality. It`s why I`m so glad that the House passed my bill with Jerry Nadler and others last night called the Respect for Marriage Act.

HAYES: There`s a real possibility that this could pass the Senate. But before we get to that, one thing that`s striking here is the speed and aggressiveness with which the Democrats have moved on this, right? I mean, this has come together in a few weeks. It seems like an example of seizing the moment, pressing the advantage, doing the thing. How did it come together so quickly?

JONES: Imagine that, Chris, Democrats actually leveraging the power that they have to galvanize the American people to turn out in November to make sure that we finally protect fundamental rights in this country. And of course, to your point earlier, we may well get 10 Republican senators of good conscience to vote for this legislation.

I`m not counting on it but I remain optimistic that 10 people on the Republican side in the United States Senate will look back on the progress that we have made, and say, Hey, we have to recognize the full humanity of everybody. That everyone deserves to live complete lives, including members of the LGBTQ-plus community.

And we should be doing this with so many other pieces of legislation, whether it is codified the right to contraception, the right to interracial marriage, and so much more. We should be having -- enforcing up or down votes on this legislation, which is precisely what I`m calling on the United States Senate to do on this and other bills.


HAYES: Yeah, the cases you`re mentioning, they`re Loving v. Virginia, which found a constitutional right on their substantive due process to interracial marriage. Griswold, which found a substantive due process right in the constitution to birth control, a right to privacy that protects that decision and that action. These were the line of cases, although notably not loving, that Clarence Thomas pointed to as necessary to be reconsidered.

It`s interesting to me because you`ve been a very outspoken critic of the court and outspoken proponent of expanding the court. There`s something striking about the fact that for years, conservative said, this shouldn`t be the judiciary. Let the democratic process decide. And now, the democratic process is deciding and a lot of them don`t seem to like it very much.

JONES: And of course, these are the same people who say, let the states decide questions of fundamental constitutional rights even as they themselves at the state level enact voter suppression laws. As you know, we are facing the worst assault on our democracy since the Jim Crow era. And so, we`ve got to defeat that voter suppression.

By the way, voter suppression that has been unleashed by the Roberts Court itself through decision after decision since 2013, striking down the Voting Rights Act or dismantling key provisions of the Voting Rights Act, which was the crown jewel, the greatest legislative achievement of the civil rights movement. And of course, fundamental rights are not up or should not be up to a vote.

If we recognize that rights are fundamental, they should be enshrined and recognized even by the highest court in the land, even a judiciary that has been packed by Mitch McConnell and his Republican allies in the United States Senate through, for example, denying Merrick Garland a seat and leaving a vacancy open for 14 months following the death of Antonin Scalia. And then of course, going back on that same rule that he invented and rushing through the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett even as a presidential election was underway, and even as millions of votes had already been cast.

When I introduced my legislation to add four seats to the Supreme Court, even my Democratic colleagues scoffed at me, for the most part, more than a year ago. But I knew we would find ourselves in this moment. And I`m fine - - I`m glad that the -- that the American people are on our side.

HAYES: I want to ask you about some of your colleagues` votes, and then I`m going to ask you about Senate. But this was really striking to me as someone -- you talked about the emotional moment when New York passed marriage equality and Obergefell, which I remember very clearly covering on our air that the day that had happened.

And as a journalist in a certain age, you know, watching the kind of marriage wars and wars over -- cultural wars over gay and lesbian people`s right to equality, that Utah`s four Republican Congress joined all House Democrats in passing the bill Tuesday that would right same-sex marriage into law. I do not believe the federal government should infringe upon an individual decisions about who they wish to marry, Congressman John Curtis said in the statement.

It is very striking, given the Church of Latter Day Saints` views on this issue and the position of so many from that state, just have four Republican Congressman from Utah voting with you. And I`m just curious how that makes you feel, what that says to you.

JONES: It speaks to the progress that we`ve made as a society. And it also speaks to what happens when you force a vote on broadly popular things. The stuff that Democrats care about and the economy that works for everybody, protecting fundamental rights, of course, making sure that we still have a democracy moving forward and defeat fascism, which is increasingly represented by the modern-day Republican Party.

When you force votes like that, you start to pick up some Republicans support because they know that it is untenable for them to continue to oppose that by hiding behind the filibuster, for example, if we`re talking about the United States Senate. But we also know that progress must be fought for and protected.

And we`ve got to make sure that we continue to be laser-focused on that. So, I`m calling for additional legislation to be passed in the United States House of Representatives. And we also need to look very strategically at limiting the jurisdiction of an unaccountable institution called the Supreme Court of the United States. It`s why I`ve been pushing to strip away the jurisdiction of this court to review certain statutes like the Women`s Health Protection Act, which codifies Roe v. Wade, and of course, the Respect for Marriage Act, my bill that passed last night with Jerry Nadler.

HAYES: Yes, it`ll be interesting to see what those votes are in the Senate. Marco Rubio from Florida coming out and saying he`s going to vote against it, which is interesting. Earlier he had said when asked about it, that he said it was a waste of time, but I know plenty of gay people in Florida that are pissed off about gas prices, which is a top five all-time politician pivot.

Congressman Mondaire Jones, thank you very much for your time tonight. I appreciate it.

JONES: Thanks for having me, Chris.

HAYES: That is ALL IN on this Wednesday night. "MSNBC PRIME" starts right now with Ayman Mohyeldin. Good evening, Ayman.