Show: HARDBALL Date: October 6, 2016 Guest: April Ryan, Jeri Muoio, Ed Rappaport, Patrick Murphy
CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST: Good evening. I`m Chris Matthews in Washington.
Well, it`s getting to be a make-or-break time for Donald Trump. He`s holding a town hall this hour up in New Hampshire in preparation for Sunday`s huge debate, a debate he needs to win, and many people believe he needs to win big.
We`ll get to all the day in politics in a minute, but first an update on Hurricane Matthew, which is barreling toward the Florida coast tonight, bringing with it 140-mile-an-hour winds and the threat of what could be an historic devastation.
Matthew intensified to a Category 4 storm and is expected to make landfall tonight or early tomorrow morning. Florida, as well as Georgia and the Carolinas, are under a state of emergency. Millions have been ordered to evacuate coastal areas, and residents are bracing for the worst.
Experts are saying that Matthew could prove to be the strongest storm on record to ever strike the east central region of Florida, threatening lives, and of course, costing billions of dollars in storm-related damage, potentially.
President Obama today ordered FEMA to mobilize disaster relief efforts, and Governor Rick Scott of Florida this morning issued a dire warning to those still remaining in the evacuation zones.
Here`s the governor.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: Don`t take a chance. A small movement could mean a lot. That`s why we have to prepare for a direct hit. So again, if you need to evacuate and you haven`t, evacuate. This storm will kill you. Time is running out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: Well, for more on the path of Hurricane Matthew, let`s check in with NBC meteorologist Bill Karins. He`s at the Weather Center tonight. Bill, give us an update on what it looks like the next couple of hours.
BILL KARINS, NBC METEOROLOGIST: Well, thanks, Chris. We`re in the critical period now, where the slightest little jog or wiggle is going to mean destruction for one city and maybe not so much destruction for another city.
Already watching the forecast path, and where the direction it`s heading up the coast. The forecast has improved over the last couple of hours. In the Miami area, you`re probably barely even going to see tropical storm- force winds. Great news for you. Even Ft. Lauderdale, maybe some tropical storm-force winds. The storm surge will be well to the north of you. A glancing blow for you, it appears.
I can`t give you the all-clear in West Palm Beach. You still have a chance of going through the outer eyewall of the storm. So here`s the center. That`s the eye. That is where we have the 140-mile-per-hour winds. Gusts could even be higher than that.
So this is what you want to eliminate. This will be catastrophic, where this comes on shore later on tonight. And then we have what we call this outer eyewall that has developed. And this is where the hurricane-force winds are. So once you get into that, that`s when the trees go down, we start to get some roof damage, and that`s also problematic once it gets to the coast.
That is only probably about three to four hours now away from the West Palm Beach area. That`s when we`ll start hearing about the power outages, the power surges, transformers blowing up in the sky.
Here`s the forecast path. So 2:00 AM, we`re still off shore. Then during the night, we rake the coastline near the Space Coast, maybe a landfall, maybe not right near Cape Canaveral.
Here`s the key. If the storm is going to be historic, likely it`s going to be because of two things. One, the wind damage with the 140-mile-per-hour winds, Cat 4, and especially the storm surge. That`s what typically what kills the most people. That`s typically what does the most damage to businesses, hotels, houses all along the shore.
As I mentioned before, West Palm Beach southwards, we`re really not concerned with any storm surge there at all. It`s once we get from Jupiter northwards, Port Saint Lucie, Vero Beach, Indian River, Cocoa Beach area to Melbourne. This is where we`re going to be anywhere in the 5 to 7-foot range.
And the really nasty stuff, Chris -- this is going to be occurring late tonight into tomorrow -- is going to be from Daytona Beach, Palm Coast, Jacksonville, Brunswick to Savannah. This is where we could get up to a 10-foot storm surge in isolated areas. That`s 10 feet, Chris, of where the water levels normally are, add 10 feet to that. That`s where the destruction will come in.
MATTHEWS: OK, Bill Karins, thanks for that report from the Weather Center. We`re going to get to politics in about a minute now, but (INAUDIBLE) one more report. NBC`s Miguel Almaguer is with us now from West Palm Beach, which is bracing right now for a possible direct hit.
Miguel, what`s it look like down there? I can`t tell from watching.
MIGUEL ALMAGUER, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Chris, good evening. The weather conditions here really have rapidly changed over the last two or three hours here. When we first got here this morning, we had a light breeze and a pretty steady wind. That developed into a pounding wind, and then of course, we got buckets of rain. That`s been intermittent. We just got hit with a round a short time ago. Those bands are certainly moving their way through this area.
Let me show you what the scene looks like out here. This is Ocean Street, one of the most popular areas in all of West Palm Beach. We have had police completely shut down this area. My photographer, Abraham, (ph), will show you down the street here. It is completely deserted.
For the last couple of hours, we have seen police cruisers come up and down this street ordering everyone in this area to leave. Now, the media has been given special access here. Police tell us we will be safe in this area for a few more hours. And then later on this evening, we`ll be forced to evacuate.
I want to show you across the street here. This is some of the waves here that have been building over the last couple of hours. As Bill mentioned, the storm surge isn`t necessarily a major problem here, but they are going to expect other issues like wind speed to be a major problem tonight.
Chris, everyone here is bracing for that next band that may hit us. And of course, overnight, the even more extreme weather that`s coming our way.
Back to you, Chris.
MATTHEWS: Great report, Miguel. Thanks so much, Miguel Almaguer in West Palm. We`re continuing to watch Hurricane Matthew bear down on Florida, on the coast down there. We`re going to keep the radar map there on the screen so you can keep up yourself. We`ll be back to our reporters on the ground there momentarily.
By the way, the second half of this hour, we`re going to really get into this storm.
But right now, in New Hampshire, Donald Trump is holding what his campaign is calling a town hall event, a practice run, a dry run, you might call it, before Sunday`s town hall-style debate with Hillary Clinton, the real thing.
The difference tonight is that the people in Trump`s town hall are all invited guests. It`s an exclusive party up there, which likely means friendly questions.
"The New York Times" reports today -- this is a huge report -- that Sunday`s debate, the one upcoming on Sunday, could be a do or die moment for the Trump campaign. If Trump stumbles, congressional candidates might openly abandon him.
Public polls show Trump losing ground around the country in all the key states. According to "The Times," private polling -- this is the key stuff -- by both parties, both Trump and Hillary Clinton -- show a precipitous drop in his support in the last couple of days, especially among independent voters, moderate Republicans, and of course, women.
And today, 30 Republican former members of Congress announced their opposition to Trump. They wrote, quote, "Sadly, our party`s nominee this year is a man who makes a mockery of the principles and values we have cherished and which we sought to represent in Congress."
Joining me right now, the HuffingtonPost`s Howard Fineman, April Ryan of the American Urban Radio Networks and "The Washington Post`s" Robert Costa.
Robert, let`s get to this thing. The way we were looking at this coming up debate on Sunday was, well, just the bar is so low after the disastrous performance in the first debate. But now I`m getting from your reporting and others that Trump has to win. He`s got to be a whiz on Sunday because he`s got to turn things around from what looks like right now a sinking ship.
ROBERT COSTA, "WASHINGTON POST," MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: The bar is very high for Trump on Sunday. It`s not just about the Trump campaign. It`s about the future of the Republican Party. Are they really going to have strong, across-the-board performance this November 8th?
Trump is not the kind of guy, based on his friends and associates, who wants to even be having a mock debate or a dry run. But he feels compelled to do so tonight in New Hampshire.
MATTHEWS: What kind of a bar do you put for him? What does he have to -- make a call here. Does he have to clearly win -- let`s put it this way. Does he have to do at least as well as his running mate did on Tuesday this week and walk away known to be by all quarters, including Podesta, the chairman of the Clinton campaign -- he had the poise, he was likable, basically, he won. Does he have to do that well?
COSTA: My sources tell me Trump`s been on the phone with Governor Pence, trying to talk through Pence`s own debate performance, what could he learn. Body language, I hear, is part of the discussion...
MATTHEWS: You mean acting like a grown-up?
COSTA: And not looking at your watch, not being fidgety. It`s 90 minutes, it`s intense, it`s person to person.
HOWARD FINEMAN, HUFFINGTON POST GLOBAL EDITORIAL DIR., MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, Chris, you and I...
MATTHEWS: Where`s your bar?
FINEMAN: Well, the bar is high, and he`s got to -- he has to be -- it has to be a Pence-like victory, let`s say.
FINEMAN: A Pensive victory. You and I -- you and I took a road trip...
MATTHEWS: Spent all day today.
FINEMAN: ... to the "T" in Pennsylvania, Trump territory, and we spoke to the Republican chairman of Adams County up there around Gettysburg. This is a woman who`s solid for Trump. And she told us in no uncertain terms he`s got to do a much, much better job this time. He`s got to hit it out of the park this time in a way he didn`t (INAUDIBLE)
MATTHEWS: Well, I`m looking at this, April...
FINEMAN: And this is a Trump supporter.
MATTHEWS: What I`m looking at is what matters, the Electoral College. And I look at the states. I thought Trump had a good grab for Florida, Ohio, North Carolina. It He looks like he`s losing those three, let alone not even winning Pennsylvania, even winning states like Virginia. He`s not even close to having a good shot at this point. So he has to do something that`s, wow, it seems to me. You agree?
APRIL RYAN, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: Yes, most definitely. The wow -- he thought the wow was attracting his supporters, those people who watched him on "The Apprentice" saying "You`re fired," those types of people because he was coming up with one-liners. From what I`m told, when he was in debate prep for this first debate with Hillary Clinton, it was a lot of one-liners. And he paid a lot of people a lot of money to help him come up with these, and it just didn`t work. So now...
MATTHEWS: Did he use them?
RYAN: He -- well, if he used them or not, it did not work. It failed. The bottom line is for him to go up against Hillary Clinton, who`s done well in debates, and then for his number two to be much better than him, he has -- the bar has got to come up much higher than that.
FINEMAN: Chris, our chairman that we talked to, that Republican chairman in the "T" of Pennsylvania, Trump territory, said he`s got to make his substantiative points and move on. In other words, he`s got to be disciplined. And in terms of Trump, that is a high bar.
RYAN: ... it cannot be personal. It cannot go personal. He`s got to hit the issues.
FINEMAN: Especially in front of a crowd...
MATTHEWS: ... Hillary Clinton -- I don`t mean to call her Hillary. Hillary Clinton, the former secretary of state, is not going to let him have a clear field to do what he has to do. She`s going to be every step of the way Sunday night screwing him up, reminding him of Alicia Machado, throwing in those things that sort of drive him nuts.
COSTA: It`s not the whole performance, not just must-wow (ph) in a general sense. He`s got to wow those suburban voters who remain skids (ph), women voters...
MATTHEWS: OK (INAUDIBLE) that because Pence can`t do that. Pence is very good, I think, looking at it over the religious right...
MATTHEWS: We watched today. He talks about, you know, religious -- he talks religiously about prayer and how he`s praying for success. It`s very good, I think, in the middle of the country, but I don`t think that works with suburbanites.
They think, Keep religious out of politics. They don`t even like that sort of religious tone. It`s secular! It`s jobs! It`s foreign policy! It`s war! It`s hard stuff. They don`t want to get too mystical about it.
COSTA: And a lot of Republicans say the only chance Trump has is to play in non-traditional areas, like different districts in Maine and do well in certain parts of New England and in Pennsylvania.
MATTHEWS: OK. You`re from Bucks County.
COSTA: I am.
MATTHEWS: As is Hallie Jackson...
MATTHEWS: ... your classmate. That is, to me, is becoming to look like ground zero. Can he get the kind of woman who in the old days when I was - - took her husband to the train in the morning, picked him up at night, went to New York once in a while, read the papers, knew what was going on.
Is that woman still out there? She may be in her 60s or 70s now, or older, but they`re out there voting.
COSTA: I always say they`re intrigued by Trump. I was just up in Bucks County. These are the kind of women and men who are pro-choice.
COSTA: They`re pro-choice moderates, both parties. They`re looking maybe for an excuse to vote for Trump, but as long as he continues to have incendiary language on women and other issues, there`s a bar.
MATTHEWS: ... gets to the heart of this, Howard and April. Look at this. Despite days of teasing that he might bring up Bill Clinton`s past scandals, like sex stuff, at the next debate, today Trump seemed to rule that out. He told "The New York Post" -- there`s a reliable source -- "I want to win this election on my policies for the future, not on Bill Clinton`s past. Jobs, trade, ending illegal immigration, veteran care, and strengthening our military is what I really want to be" -- well, that`s what he should be talking about!
FINEMAN: Chris -- Chris, that`s what the county chair, the Republican county chair told us up there...
MATTHEWS: I should say "The Post" is a good source for him.
FINEMAN: Yes. The Republican county chair that we talked to in the "T," in Trump territory, said he`s got to stick to his substantiative topics. And even though she`s died-in-the-wool for Trump, she said, We`re lacking civility in politics. Remember when she said that? We have no civility in politics. I think a lot of those suburban women, they`re going to vote partly on the basis of who comes off as a decent person.
MATTHEWS: But she originally said that`s why she was for Trump, which doesn`t make any sense to us.
FINEMAN: I know, but what...
FINEMAN: ... is her yearning for civility somewhere.
RYAN: It doesn`t serve Donald Trump to get up there again and talk things that really basically put his foot in his mouth and brought his numbers down, talking about the fact that he has taken advantage of the housing crisis and made money off of people`s pain, then also talking about -- I mean, if we have to pay taxes, talking about the fact that he has not paid taxes for 20 years after he lost $916 million.
RYAN: The American public feels what they feel, and they know what they know.
MATTHEWS: Yesterday, Trump said many of his past comments about women`s looks were done -- catch this -- for the purpose of entertainment. Let`s watch. I don`t know if this covers him at all, but let`s watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you understand the concern from parents of younger girls that some of the wording that you`ve used to talk about attractiveness or unattractiveness might make it more difficult for girls who are struggling with their body image and the pressure to be model- perfect?
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Sure, I do. And you know, a lot of this is done in the entertainment business. I`m being interviewed for "Apprentice" long before I ever thought in terms of running for office.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.
TRUMP: But a lot of that was done for the purpose of entertainment. And you know, when people hear it and when they hear -- there`s nobody -- I can tell you this. There`s nobody, nobody that has more respect for women than I do.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you trying to tone it down now, not use those words...
TRUMP: Well, it`s not a question of trying, it`s very easy. But you know, you`re in the entertainment business, you`re doing "The Apprentice," you have one of the top shows on television, and you say things differently for a reason.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right.
TRUMP: And now it`s a much different world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: You know, I`ve always thought about one phrase that I think is true. You only get one reputation in life. And here`s a guy trying to shake his whole reputation of being a show business guy, an act, and now he`s saying, Oh, that was just an act. That was just for show biz.
RYAN: This is not an act. I`ve covered three American presidents for 20 years January. What you say is what you mean. You can`t take it back. This is not entertainment. This is real life. This is real-life drama. People are affected. Women are the key voting bloc for this election and any election...
MATTHEWS: He wasn`t ready for that.
RYAN: He wasn`t ready.
MATTHEWS: Miss Piggy and all that stuff.
RYAN: He`s not ready for primetime. And for him to talk about a woman -- again, it goes back to the trophy look. His daughter is beautiful. His wife is beautiful. Everyone out here is not glamorous. Everyone -- there are people who work every day, who fight hard every day. How many of us have not had weight issues? I still deal with it.
MATTHEWS: I agree about it. And you know what I thought what was interesting, Howard, how effective -- you know, some ads -- this wouldn`t have happened (INAUDIBLE) like, 10 years ago. You would -- Hillary does this ad. I`ve been watching it on our network. It`s so good. They have young, you know, regular-looking people, good-looking people, but they`re not movie stars, and they come on, a girl, a thin girl, you know, then they have the "flat-chested comment." Then they show somebody a bit overweight, and they had the weight comment.
They`re directly targeting the very basic kind of people who would be offended by these shots (ph) by Trump.
FINEMAN: Well, Chris, we saw evidence of that today when we went to Gettysburg College. We had 10 or 15 college kinds in the room...
MATTHEWS: ... one young woman.
FINEMAN: There was one young woman...
MATTHEWS: (INAUDIBLE) emotional.
FINEMAN: ... who was very emotional on this topic. Was she a huge Hillary fan per se? Not necessarily. Is she driven to Hillary because of her fear and loathing of Donald Trump and his comments about women, including women who have weight issues? Absolutely.
MATTHEWS: She was great. She was great. She was -- I said, You`ve got to run for office, and I meant it to her. Because she`s the kind of person, a regular person, obviously smart and political, wouldn`t be in the room with us today at Gettysburg College if she wasn`t one of the top students.
And I said, Why don`t you run? And then I asked everybody in the room to close their eyes and I said, Put up your hands if you`re ever going to run for office. And this is where the country is right now, and it`s such a troubling thing to see. Less than half of them. This is the politically astute, political junkies, as we call them, totally into it -- not, what, 40 percent at the most said they were going to run for office.
Why are young people being driven away from running for office? We`re getting the most scant list, the weakest list of presidential candidates we have ever had. Now, Hillary`s fine in terms of her resume, but she`s got problems, too. And what I don`t understand is nobody wants to run for office anymore, nobody, especially these bright young kids today. That is scary.
FINEMAN: Well, why would you...
MATTHEWS: Democracy depends on good candidates!
FINEMAN: Why would you, given the atmosphere that we`re living in...
RYAN: People talk about you -- anything that`s associated with you is in the street and on the table. But I`m going to say this. As the mother of two young girls, I try to instill in them every day self-esteem. They don`t look like every person out here, but they`re individual and they`re perfect in their own way.
MATTHEWS: Good for you.
RYAN: And I`m telling you, that what Donald Trump did is wrong.
COSTA: One quick point on the polling. You brought up internal polling. Both parties show Trump sliding in the past couple of weeks.
MATTHEWS: That`s what I want to know.
COSTA: There are...
MATTHEWS: What started it, the debate performance?
COSTA: Not the debate performance, what happened after the debate performance...
COSTA: ... the late-night tweets. The two most important people watching this debate on Sunday, Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate leader McConnell. What do they privately think and advise their members?
MATTHEWS: I`ll tell you people watching. They`re women. And they`re going to make a final judgment on this guy, and if he acts like he`s been acting -- did you like that sound?
FINEMAN: The technical term is (INAUDIBLE)
MATTHEWS: Yes, Howard Fineman, April Ryan and Robert Costa are staying with us for one more segment. Much more on Trump as he gets ready for Sunday`s rematch -- that`s a phrase, rematch -- with Hillary Clinton. And more on what Howard and I learned today when we went and talked to people up in Pennsylvania.
That`s a state Trump needs absolutely to win, and it may be slipping for him out of reach, which means he ain`t going to win.
We`ll be back after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. MIKE PENCE (R-IN), VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Some people think I won that debate. Now, I -- I...
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
PENCE: But I -- honestly, I would leave that to others to say.
But, from where I sat, Donald Trump won that debate.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
PENCE: Donald Trump`s vision to make America great again won that debate, and Donald Trump`s vision to make this nation great again is going to win all the way to the White House!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: What was the Julius Caesar line? Thrice, he was offered the crown, and twice he denied it.
MATTHEWS: Anyway, we`re right back.
That was Governor Mike Pence earlier today up in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Howard and I were there.
We continue to follow the news from Florida, of course, which is under a state of emergency, as Hurricane Matthew barrels towards it at this hour. We will wait and see when it does hit. We will have much more on that coming up in the last half-hour this hour.
Well, we continue now with Howard Fineman, April Ryan, and Robert Costa in this pivotal race in the presidential race.
Howard, you came out of there. And you were great at reporting, getting the right people. We were talking to regular kids -- not kids -- college kids. We were talking to party chairs from both parties. We watched a Pence rally. You were running around and interviewing all the guys and people at those rallies, a lot of cat hats, a lot of working people, very few suits in the room.
These were not the rich people. These are regular people backing Pence and Trump. Interesting, they were the classic T. people in Pennsylvania, what Carville calls Alabama, the middle of the state.
Howard, what are the big three things you got out of...
HOWARD FINEMAN, NBC CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, my first big takeaway is that Mike Pence is the real deal in that part of the country and in that part of the political system, very confident.
But what struck me, also, was that his was not a cult of personality speech. The thing about this campaign is, neither of these -- it`s not a cult of personality. These are issues. People say that this is not an issues-based campaign, in a way because the candidates are so disliked.
The focus is on the Supreme Court, it`s on taxes, it`s on, actually, substantive things.
MATTHEWS: They got the headlines. They got the cheers today.
FINEMAN: That`s right. Yes.
And Mike Pence did not go on and on about Donald Trump`s life story. You didn`t hear, you know, him building X building or Y building. It was pretty...
MATTHEWS: He said the importance of the Supreme Court in this election, and they all went crazy.
FINEMAN: Yes, Supreme Court, Supreme Court, Supreme Court. So, that`s number one.
Number two is the fact that the millennials that we talked to at a place like Gettysburg, however reluctantly, however unenthusiastically in some cases, are coming towards Hillary Clinton. And I think there are two reasons, college money -- money for college tuition.
MATTHEWS: The Bernie people like that.
FINEMAN: The Bernie people. College tuition and the Obamacare, which allows them to stay on their parents` health care until the age of 26.
None of these kids, by the way -- we asked them this -- we asked all 15 or so of them, do you think Social Security will be around when you`re ready for it? Not a single person said that, said so.
So, they want to get what they can get now, which is college tuition and health care. And, third, as obscure as it sounds, we were in a rural farm area, where having migrant labor is actually not -- is seen as a good thing, not a bad thing.
MATTHEWS: For the apple -- that apples.
FINEMAN: Believe it or not, to pick the apples, you need the migrants.
MATTHEWS: It`s like "Cider House Rules."
FINEMAN: And this is something you wouldn`t know if you hadn`t gone there. And, as a matter of fact...
MATTHEWS: And they`re year-round residents. They`re not just migrants.
FINEMAN: They`re not just migrants.
FINEMAN: And it tinges and softens the views in some rural areas toward migrants, which I think is interesting and unexplored.
MATTHEWS: And I don`t think they feel the cultural change or any of things in big cities people worry about.
I think, up in the apple orchards, they said they`re doing a job that needs doing and they`re open to it. It was very interesting.
Anyway, yesterday a rally in Reno, Donald Trump made a point of pronouncing the state of Nevada correctly. The only problem, he didn`t pronounce it correctly. Let`s watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Heroine overdoses are surging and meth overdoses in Nevada -- Nevada -- and you know what I said? You know what I said? I said -- when I came out here, I said, nobody says it the other way. It has to be Nevada, right?
And if you don`t say it correctly -- and it didn`t happen to me, but it happened to a friend of mine. He was killed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: He just dug the hole deeper and deeper and deeper by saying Nevada.
MATTHEWS: That`s what we said growing up on the East Coast.
But you learn, when you go out there, any time, you learn, it`s Nevada. By the way, is Frisco next? Is he going to go to San Francisco and say, it`s great to be in Frisco, which they don`t take lightly?
FINEMAN: There goes Nevada.
APRIL RYAN, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: Or Tanzania. A couple of months ago, remember, he said -- and he was doing this big foreign policy speech, he said Tanzania.
RYAN: So, this is -- look it up. It`s true.
MATTHEWS: I think it`s Tasmania, and it`s right near Australia. He got them mixed up.
RYAN: No, Tanzania.
MATTHEWS: I know what it is.
RYAN: So he`s used to -- I guess he`s used to misspeaking.
MATTHEWS: I`m the only one at this table to hitchhike through Tanzania.
RYAN: Oh, right.
MATTHEWS: I know it well.
RYAN: All right.
ROBERT COSTA, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Peace Corps.
COSTA: Peace Corps, right?
RYAN: Yes for the Peace Corps.
MATTHEWS: Anyway, do you think things matter, or are we just picking points here?
COSTA: I think Howard`s point is a really provocative one, because when you ask the question to people on Capitol Hill, why haven`t you deserted Trump, they think, when he sticks to trade, when he sticks to the issues that appeal to the T., economic, jobs, and he`s not becoming just Donald Trump and all the Donald Trump controversy, they think he has a shot.
And that`s what they want to see Sunday.
MATTHEWS: OK, Sunday, suppose he does the perfect storm on Sunday and does what most of us think he`s got this far on, illegal immigration, uncontrolled immigration? And that`s mostly the Republican Party`s fault, because they don`t want a bill, to some extent, the Democrats, too, because they haven`t done a tough bill.
Losing jobs through trade, everybody is responsible for that, because we kept cutting these trade bills, and places like Michigan get hollowed out, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan City in Indiana. All these places, you go to, there`s nothing there but rust. And maybe there used to be Blockbuster movie place there.
Now there may be a diner, and that`s it, Spencerville, Ohio, places like that.
FINEMAN: Terrorism, law and order.
MATTHEWS: Well, the three. No, I would say illegal immigration, trade and loss of jobs for guys, mainly manufacturing tough guy jobs, and, third, stupid wars. And yet we think, in the whole week, what it`s about? Machado. Alicia Machado.
COSTA: Can he speak to what you`re talking about, or is he going to speak about Donald Trump? That`s the question.
MATTHEWS: Well, can he resist a personal shot from Hillary?
I asked -- I asked Mike -- we asked Mike Pence. I said, what do you do when he tweets out something at 3:00 in the morning about this woman? Why don`t you take his smartphone away?
MATTHEWS: Yes, that`s what you did. You said it to Governor Pence. Take away his phone.
FINEMAN: They should take away his phone.
RYAN: What did he say? What did he say?
FINEMAN: Mike Pence, not an ounce of daylight, a sliver of daylight there, he said, no. He said that Donald Trump likes to and can communicate with the...
MATTHEWS: With the American people.
FINEMAN: With the American people.
MATTHEWS: He used it as a plus.
FINEMAN: It`s a plus.
MATTHEWS: Like, not only does he talk to you during the daytime. He`s going to be talking to you at 3:00 in the morning.
FINEMAN: He will talk to you at night. He will talk to you at any time.
MATTHEWS: That`s what a running mate has to do.
RYAN: And that`s for the California -- that`s for the West Coast folks.
But you know what?
FINEMAN: You mean time of day.
RYAN: Yes, the time of day, tweeting at 3:00 a.m., OK?
Anyway, but here`s the deal. When we really look at these debates -- and I`m thinking about a conversation I had with former Baltimore City Mayor Kurt Schmoke in Baltimore.
MATTHEWS: Rhodes Scholar.
RYAN: Rhodes Scholar.
He said, one of the main issues, going back to Howard`s point, the Supreme Court. There`s also issues of the economy, which brings in the trade issue. Then there are also the real issues in urban cities and mothers who have to deal with this criminal justice. That`s on the table as well.
So we have got to look for answers, not just the glitz and the glimmer and shine and who can throw the one-liners. It`s about real people, real issues, and what affects the pocketbook at home.
MATTHEWS: I would go into every major city in the United States, if I were Trump -- and he`s not me and I`m not him -- and I would say, I`m going to rebuild the Philadelphia subway system.
I`m going to build it up to the ground up.
MATTHEWS: I`m going to build it up. And we are going to have so many real jobs, paying $30, $40 an hour, whatever. It`s going to be real union jobs with Davis-Bacon rates of payment. Everybody`s going to work for years. And then we`re going to have a city that`s up to date, like the parts of the world anybody gets to visit.
MATTHEWS: Which is most of the rest of the world.
Look, we have got to go.
RYAN: What about the nation`s bridges, the nation`s bridges?
RYAN: Yes, everything, infrastructure, roads.
MATTHEWS: Anyway, I would spend money on fixing things up with real jobs. Forget the welfare, everything else. Stick with real building jobs, real jobs, not leaf raking. And he doesn`t talk like this. I don`t understand. I think Hillary should do the same.
I think building this country is what we ought to talk about, building it together. That`s Hillary`s way.
Howard Fineman, April Ryan, Robert Costa.
We will be right back, full coverage of this monster storm right now. It`s a Category 4 storm right now, which is big-time. It`s called Matthew as it bears down on the coast of Florida.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: These catastrophic levels can completely wipe out well-built homes and destroy neighborhoods.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: That`s Florida Governor Rick Scott today talking earlier about the profound danger facing his state of Florida, as Hurricane Matthew nears the coast.
For the latest, let`s go down to the National Hurricane Center.
Ed Rappaport is the NHC deputy director.
Thank you, Ed.
Give us a sense of where this stands in history. Can we place it now in terms of its danger? ED RAPPAPORT, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER: Well, it depends on whether the center comes ashore and how close it gets to it.
Right now, we have got the center of the hurricane about 100 miles off the Florida coast. But the forecast is for that center, which is here on this graphic, to move towards the northwest. Here`s the Florida East Coast. The red means we have a hurricane warning in effect.
And the track of the center is forecast to come right up to the coast, perhaps move inland. And it`s the area here in brown, which we can move along, slide along there, which is where the worst of the conditions are going to be, the core of the hurricane.
This is where the Category 3 and 4 winds are occurring. This is where the very dangerous storm surge is at a maximum.
MATTHEWS: What strikes me, as a total amateur following this, is that the danger here is not just the horror, and horrible nature of the winds and everything. It`s how it just sits. It`s apparently going to just sit over a lot of the United States for a couple days. It`s just going to sit there and just wreak havoc for a long time.
Well, at this stage, it does look like the entire Florida East Coast, particularly north of Palm Beach, is at risk, as is the coast from Georgia to South Carolina. And our biggest concern, really, as it is with most of the hurricanes, is storm surge.
And this is a prototype National Weather Service graphic that will be official next year. And it shows where there`s the threat for life- threatening -- where there is life threatening storm surge. You can see, along the coasts, spreads a little bit inland, even goes down the St. Johns River. That occurs because, if you have the center of the hurricane here, with the winds flowing this way, it piles the water up along the coast and pushes it ashore.
And, for this hurricane, we could see seven to 11 feet of storm surge. That`s the depth of the water moving inland, and, on top of that, there`ll be waves as well.
MATTHEWS: So much of Florida along the resort areas, certainly the expensive parts of Florida, have these offshore islands, like the offshore strips like Miami Beach.
Can that surge just go right over a place like Miami, which apparently is deserted right now? Can they go right over it, right to West Palm?
RAPPAPORT: Yes, they can certainly top the barrier islands.
In this case, though, fortunately, the center is passing far enough offshore of Miami-Dade and Broward counties that that`s not an issue. But it will be a concern as it moves up -- the storm moves up the coast.
Again, biggest concern is that storm surge.
RAPPAPORT: And it`s the entire East Coast really from Palm Beach northward, up to South Carolina.
MATTHEWS: Thank you so much, Ed Rappaport. Thanks for your expertise coming on from the National Hurricane Center.
U.S. Congressman Patrick Murphy is going shelter to shelter in his Florida district.
He joins us now by phone from Jupiter, Florida.
Congressman Murphy, thank you for coming up.
Give us a sense of what -- are people -- are they dealing with the fact that this could be the worst? Are they getting ready for the worst?
REP. PATRICK MURPHY (D), FLORIDA: Well, Chris, it`s a little bit early to tell right now.
I went to a few shelters earlier today. And, unfortunately, there weren`t as many people there as the experts had predicted. And I was talking to a family in one of the shelters, and they said that they live in a trailer park that is near the shore, and they were the only family to evacuate.
MURPHY: And that`s scary to me, because this could be a catastrophic storm.
And it looks like it`s going to veer a little bit more north, but, as you know, these things can change at the last minute. It can move a little bit left or to the west. And those folks that are, you know, on the -- along the coast there, whether that`s the storm surge, whether that`s the power outage, whether that`s the wind, they need to be very careful.
At this point, it`s getting a little bit too late to evacuate, so we are recommending that folks hunker down and stay put until this storm has passed.
MATTHEWS: I heard Rick Scott, the governor, say something odd today. He said that don`t disobey this order just because -- or this request to get out to evacuate just because you like to defy orders. It was almost like working against the orneriness of people.
Does Florida have a law that can tell people to leave by law or not? What`s the legal situation for evacuation?
MURPHY: Well, I was with the sheriff of Martin County -- that`s the county just north of where I`m at right now in Palm Beach -- earlier.
And he said that he`s not going to go around and arrest people, that they simply don`t have the resources to do that. They have to make sure the resources are going to the true emergency situations.
They are in what they call the emergency operation centers right now, whether that`s the fire department, the police, folks from FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers, all coordinating with the federal and state governments to make sure they`re handling the most critical of circumstances.
You know, I remember, Congressman, as you all do, you do as well, that back when we had Katrina hit New Orleans, everybody was bragging about how we`re going to get 95 percent of the people out of here, but that left 50,000 people stuck below the water line.
So, the question is, what about those hangers-on? You said that their best bet now at this point is to hunker down, as you put it?
At this point, it is -- the first bands are starting to come through where I`m at in Northern Palm Beach. The power is already flickering around that. And I imagine, in the next hour or two, we will probably lose power here. We are of course hoping we don`t, but, with those tropical-storm- force winds, oftentimes, you lose power.
You don`t want to be on the streets, what happens, the kind of debris out there, or, worst yet, a downed power line in some water. You step in it, and it doesn`t end well. So, we`re advising people to stay in, use flashlights. Don`t use candles. That sometimes can lead to even worse conditions.
So, hunker down, stay safe, and don`t leave at this point.
MATTHEWS: Is it smart to go to a local hotel even, or stay in your house?
MURPHY: It`s best to go to one of the shelters that have generators, that have food, that have emergency officials there.
MURPHY: They have been -- and most folks should have power and Internet right now.
Go on to your local news station, go on to your local agencies to find out the best place to go regarding a shelter, not a hotel.
Thanks so much, U.S. Congressman Patrick Murphy of Florida.
We continue to monitor the path of Hurricane Matthew, now a Category 4. It`s called a monster storm.
MSNBC`s live coverage of Hurricane Matthew will continue after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I will stay with a co-worker and wait out the storm, and hopefully come back and be glad that I left.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Board her up and then pray.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s a little scary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: Stop and think about this. We should not be putting people`s lives at risk because you made the foolish decision not to evacuate.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC ANCHOR: Well, Florida is bracing for Hurricane Matthew right now, a strong category 4 storm. NBC`s Craig Melvin is with us now from Melbourne, Florida, which is getting ready for the worst.
Craig, you`re right where it`s going to hut?
CRAIG MELVIN, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Chris, we are. And I can tell you the last 20 or 30 minutes or so, we`ve seen the winds pick up considerably. You can see some of these palm trees that are all over, of course, all of Florida. These palm trees starting to sway far more than they have throughout the course of the afternoon. Street signs like this.
We are, for the most part, minus some emergency vehicles and a few police officers, we`re the only people on the street here in Melbourne. Roughly 75,000 people live here, about an hour south of Orlando. And a drive in from the airport, you would be hard-pressed to find even a gas station open. Fast food restaurants boarded up. A lot of folks heeding the warnings from local officials here to get the heck out of town.
I talked to one of the cops a short time ago. He said they were very pleased that most folks, most folks seem to have evacuated. Again, I`m going to show you the street here. There`s a causeway maybe about a quarter of a mile from here, Chris. Typically, they shut down the causeway when the winds reach 35 to 40 miles per hour. Police tell me they`re not going to do that tonight, because they really want people to continue to get out of here.
They are expecting wind gusts tonight, somewhere between 55 and 60 miles per hour. Tomorrow morning, somewhere between 5:00, 6:00, maybe 7:00, local officials say they are bracing for wind gusts north of 100 to 120 miles an hour. This is the same area where you might remember back in 2004, 2005, hurricane after hurricane after tropical storm battered this city so much so, in fact, that they`re still recovering more than 10, 15 years later.
This is an area that has seen its fair share of storms. I talked to an official, I said, they are expecting this to be the worst that they`ve seen, in some 30 years. You can`t really see it from here. I`ll try to show you, we are maybe 200 feet away from the ocean.
The fear here, of course, is that storm surge that we spent so much time talking about this afternoon and this evening, that when the waters rise and they`re saying they could rise somewhere between 10 inches to a foot, if not more than a foot, then a lot of these businesses behind me, a lot of these homes behind me, they`ll be flooded. That`s going to be the story here of the storm surge, the power outages, of course, as well, Chris.
MATTHEWS: Well, take care of yourself. I just saw you, by the way, somewhere around Richmond. There you are down in Florida, Craig. Take care of yourself.
That was Craig Melvin, of course.
By the way, 1 1/2 million people have been ordered to evacuate in advance of Hurricane Matthew, but not all are leaving. They`ve been encouraged to leave, they haven`t left.
NBC`s Mariana Atencio is with a family hunkering down right now in Melbourne where we just were with Craig.
Mariana, tell us -- well, let`s meet that family.
MARIANA ATENCIO, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Chris. That`s right, I`m here with the McKinney family. They`re about three miles from where Craig was. Like millions of families throughout this state, they`ve made their preparations. They pondered whether or not to evacuate. In their case, they`re staying put, they`re now sitting down, watching the news, waiting for this monster storm to arrive.
I want to talk to Susan here, who I met at the boardwalk where Craig was earlier this morning.
Susan, you live in Georgia. What are you doing here now in Melbourne?
SUSAN STALCUP, MELBOURNE RESIDENT: Well, we had a trip already planned here. We were going to come down, surprise our mom and watch one of our kids play soccer. We found out about the hurricane, we already had the time off, we were already coming here, and I didn`t want to turn around and tell my family I wasn`t going to come down here when they could need us, so we came.
ATENCIO: And you`re a hurricane pro, because you grew up here in Florida?
STALCUP: My whole life, my whole life.
ATENCIO: So, mom to Susan is Barbara over here. I want you to meet Tom and Barbara McKinney, and their dog, Bella, Chris.
Are you happy your daughter decided to stay and accompany you through this storm tonight?
BARBARA MCKINNEY, MELBOURNE RESIDENT: Yes, I am. I was a bit concerned, but I know how stubborn she is and when she wants to see her family, she wants to see her family. Good times, bad times, she`s coming. So, I`m glad she`s here.
ATENCIO: Barbara, you`ve got your whole family here. What kind of preparations have you made for when this storm hits, possibly, tonight into tomorrow morning?
B. MCKINNEY: Well, we have water, we have food, we have ice, our biggest thing is if we lose power.
ATENCIO: And Chris, just (AUDIO GAP) I think upwards of 20,000 people have already lost power throughout this state and the storm hasn`t even hit.
Tom, do you guys have a generator, for example?
TOM MCKINNEY, MELBOURNE RESIDENT: No, we don`t.
ATENCIO: Does that concern you at all?
T. MCKINNEY: No, we`ll be all right.
ATENCIO: You also are hurricane pros, right? You were referencing Andrew before, do you think this will be like Andrew?
B. MCKINNEY: Actually, Andrew, if you remember, a high came out when it was supposed to hit Brevard County. A high came out and it hit Miami instead.
So, we really didn`t experience that. I don`t think this storm will be anywhere near Andrew. Do I think we need to be concerned and watchful? Yes, I do. But it`s just being prepared and making the best of what you can.
ATENCIO: And I -- before I leave with you, Chris, I want you to meet young Eisley (ph) over here.
Eisley, this will be your first hurricane?
UNIDENTIFIED GIRL: Yes.
ATENCIO: Are you scared?
UNIDENTIFIED GIRL: Well, I`m nervous.
ATENCIO: She`s nervous.
So, a slice of life here, Chris. Families like the McKinney`s deciding to stay put and we`ll follow up with them tomorrow when this monster storm hits Melbourne, Florida.
MATTHEWS: Well, that`s a great report, Mariana Atencio. Thanks so much for joining us and bringing those people to us.
Anyway, the Palm Beach area is getting ready for a possible direct hit.
Joining us by phone is Mayor Jeri Muoio of West Palm Beach, Florida.
Mayor, thank you for joining us. I was asking about these barrier islands being hit by a surge. Can that surge jump across Miami Beach to West Palm? Can that happen?
MAYOR JERI MUOIO, WEST PALM BEACH, FL: Well, we have Palm Beach to the east of us, which is a barrier island. I don`t think we`ll see any jumping going on, but we have an intercoastal waterway that will surge, as well, and mostly some flooding along Flagler drive, which goes right along the intercoastal waterway.
You`ve been here, Chris, you know what it`s like in North Palm Beach. It`s beautiful and right now we`re hoping for the best.
MATTHEWS: What do you think people should do, if you had to advise them right now? Get out of town, join the traffic rush out of town or hunker down or go to a hotel or go to a shelter? They`ve got some options, not many.
MUOIO: Yes, well, we`ve been telling people to shelter in place at this point. If you haven`t left, it`s probably not a good time to leave, because we`re starting to see the bands come in here, and a lot of wind and rain. Make sure people have a safe room in their house. Be careful if the electricity goes out, be careful using candles, try to use flashlights. If you have a generator, don`t bring it inside. Just try to give people a lot of good advice.
MATTHEWS: Do you think this is part of the regular hurricane season, or is this something that`s extraordinary in terms of climate?
MUOIO: Well, you know, I think it`s extraordinary. Part of the reason this hurricane is so large is that there was nothing to stop it. So the water around Florida and in the Atlantic is very warm. And that, of course, is a concern, as we talk about global warming. And it didn`t go over any land to get broken up, so the problem is it just -- there to stop it. And part of it is because the water is so very warm.
MATTHEWS: Yes, I just wonder about Florida being so close to sea level and the fact that this climatic situation is raising the sea level and making everything more precarious. Thank you for taking the time.
MUOIO: It`s very concerning.
MATTHEWS: Mayor, thanks so much, Mayor Jeri Muoio for joining us, from West Palm Beach, where she`s mayor. That`s right near, right across to the west of Palm Beach itself.
Back with more, as we continue to track Hurricane Matthew as it bears down on the coast of Florida.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People do not seem to get it and are not leaves, and I have already checked. I`m not saying this to be theatrical. You all know me. I don`t lean towards bravado, but I talked to my detective captain earlier today and I asked him, do you have body bags? Are you prepared for mass casualties? Because if people do not leave, and we get 140 mile an hour wind gusts in some of our mobile home place, we are going to have fatalities.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MATTHEWS: We`re back.
Hurricane Matthew has left 264 people dead across the Caribbean. Many of them in Haiti. And now, Florida`s getting ready for the worst.
Let`s go to Daytona Beach. That`s where NBC`s Ron Mott is in an SUV on the roads there.
Ron, give us a sense of what`s happening there.
RON MOTT, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Hey there, Chris. Well, we decided to get out here on the road just to see what we could see out here before this becomes impossible to do.
This is the main north/south drag along the coast here in Daytona Beach, Atlantic Avenue. Let me take you outside here. Show you what we`re seeing. This is a scene that officials want to see all night long, which is very little to no traffic out here.
We have seen a couple cars go by us before we got on the air with you, Chris. You see some flashing lights up there. There`s a police officer sitting there in the middle of the intersection and is stopping cars making sure that people know where they`re going and not just wandering around, because that is going to be a problem here in a couple, three hours when this business end of this storm bears down over Daytona Beach.
We are anticipating getting quite a bit of storm surge here. Could top ten feet. We`ll see. If it does, that may threaten this roadway here.
One thing that I thought was interesting, Chris, is that a lot of these businesses, they`re geared toward the tourism industry, and all the folks who come down for fun in the sun here, many of them didn`t board up which I found sort of interesting and maybe they`re taking their chances thinking that because they are facing due east, we`re expecting when those first bands, real bands get in here, we`re expecting the winds to be coming almost straight at us from the north, maybe north-northeast, they think they`re going to be okay to last through the storm.
Again, this all depends on where this eye is when it gets around Daytona Beach. If we stay on the western side, which everyone is hoping for, the winds won`t be nearly as strong and we think that that should help a lot of these businesses that didn`t board up make it through the worst of this storm. If somehow we get too close to that eye or end up on the eastern edge of it, all bets are off, Chris, because that`s the side you don`t want to be on. Back up to you.
MATTHEWS: Ron Mott, thanks for that.
Anyway, we used to go down there for our spring breaks and drive along the beach. Those beaches were so strong down there.
Anyway, for a sense of what Florida may be facing right now, just look at the Bahamas. NBC`s Tammy Leitner is with us from Nassau in the Bahamas, of course, which took a direct hit from Hurricane Matthew.
Tammy, give us a preview based upon what`s happening there.
TAMMY LEITNER, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Chris, the rain is finally sub sided enough that we can go out and check out the damage, now this is the main downtown area where the tourists come, from the cruise ships stop. The street is lined with stores and now it`s also lined with water. You can see they put some sandbags up here, but it did not do a lot of good. There`s actually water inside of these stores and it goes pretty far back.
You know, we had a very short, short window to take a drive around the island and we saw a lot of devastation. Trees down. Power poles down. Trees on top of houses. Roads completely washed away. And we now know people are still trapped in their houses. Chris?
MATTHEWS: So is paradise island under water, too, and Atlantis, all these resorts? Are they under water?
LEITNER: You know, we have not been able to get over to Paradise Island, as you know, there`s a bridge connecting them. We do know everybody at Atlantis, they were evacuated from their rooms. They had to sleep on the floor over there in a big ballroom. So I`m guessing that everybody is safe. We`re told there are about 3,000 visitors on this island and all the visitors are accounted for.
MATTHEWS: Was it -- was it a category 4 when it went through the Bahamas? What was the category level of the storm when it went through where you are?
LEITNER: Yes, it eventually upgraded to a category 4 and, I mean, this island just got pummeled. I mean, we were out there in the eye of the storm for at least nine hours and the winds were 125, 130 miles an hour. Trees were just bending in the wind. We saw cars smashed, roads completely flooded and just devastation, utter devastation from this nine hours of beating that this island took.
MATTHEWS: So, to be in a brick building, we`re looking right now at the sort of classic pictures of the look down there in Bahamas. If you`re in a brick building or strong structure, were you okay? Or is -- people in the mobile homes, the manufactured homes in Florida, who`s going to be at risk?
LEITNER: I can tell you who`s going do be at risk. The houses on the south side of this island. You know, we were in a hotel and our hotel had tiles coming through holes in the ceiling where water was coming through. Our hotel was falling apart this morning when the storm was coming through. So I can only imagine what the houses on the south side of the island look like now.
We`ve not been able to get over there. That was the first part of the island that was hit from this hurricane and I`m guessing that`s where most of the damage is.
MATTHEWS: Is the water level crested now around you? I see a car driving through. It looks like it`s about three, four inches deep. Is that it? You`ve seen the worst there, in the Bahamas?
LEITNER: You know what, this is actually receded, Chris. So I`m up on the sidewalk. I`m stepping down here onto the street. I mean, this is only about ten inches now. It has receded some from when we first came out a few hours ago.
LEITNER: I mean, there are neighborhoods that have three feet of water in their front yards.
MATTHEWS: You`ve got a story to tell for all times, Tammy Leitner. Thank you, from Nassau in the Bahamas. What a look.
Anyway, that does it for us this hour. Our continuing coverage of hurricane Matthew continues now with Chris Hayes.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END