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President Trump pays tribute to Allied troops. TRANSCRIPT: 6/6/19, Hardball w/ Chris Matthews.

Guests: Joe Crowley, Shannon Pettypiece, Aaron Blake, Carlos Curbelo,Eleanor Holmes Norton, Dana Milbank

ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST:  And that does it for THE BEAT.  Again, I`ll see you 6:00 P.M. Eastern tomorrow.  But don`t go anywhere because "HARDBALL" with Chris Matthews is up next.

CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC HOST:  I want to see him in prison.  Let`s play HARDBALL.

Good evening.  I`m Chris Matthews in Washington.  Those words were from the Speaker of the u.s. House of Representatives about the President of the United States.  I want to see him in prison.  Politico is reporting that in a closed-door meeting on Tuesday night, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi clashed with House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler over how to hold the President accountable.

Unhappy with the Speaker`s current strategy, Nadler pressed Pelosi to allow his committee to launch an impeachment inquiry but was rebuffed by the Speaker, according to multiple unnamed sources.  Pelosi`s response, however, was she didn`t want to him peach, she wants him in prison.  She`s talking about the President.  Pelosi wants Trump defeated in 2020 and then prosecuted under the law.

With 59 members of Congress who have now expressed support for impeachment proceedings, here is what Chairman Nadler said in an interview yesterday.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST:  Why not now?  What`s the problem if you start it right now and begin the process?  You`re going to go ahead with investigations to begin with.

REP. JERRY NADLER (D-NY):  Well, right now, there doesn`t appear to be the support for it.

BLITZER:  In your committee or among the democrats in the whole House?

NADLER:  Well, I`m not going to get into that, but there does not appear to be support for it now and we will see the support may develop.


MATTHEWS:  Well, this comes as the President today delivered some politically charged remarks during an interview for the -- right in front of the American cemetery in Normandy, in France.  Speaking in front of graves of U.S. service members, the President put decorum aside and attacked Speaker Pelosi and Special Counsel Robert Mueller.


LAURA INGRAHAM, FOX NEWS HOST:  Do you mind if he testifies still before?  You said he didn`t care if he were to testify.

DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT:  Okay.  He made such a fool out of himself the last time because what people don`t report is the letter he had to do to straighten out his testimony because his testimony was wrong.  But Nancy Pelosi, I call her Nervous Nancy, Nancy Pelosi doesn`t talk about it.  Nancy Pelosi is a disaster, okay.  She is a disaster.  And let her do what she wants.  You know what, I think they are in big trouble.


MATTHEWS:  Well, this comes as Politico reports that Robert Mueller could be subpoenaed in the next two weeks.

Democrats are also preparing a house resolution empowering their committee chairs to enforce the subpoenas that the White House has blocked at every turn.  According to Politico, it`s a move to stream line and speed up the House`s ability to respond to a mounting list of confrontations with the White House.

I`m joined now by Shannon Pettypiece, White House Reporter of Bloomberg, Joe Crowley of New York, former U.S. Congressman from there and former Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, and Aaron Blake is a Senior Political Reporter at The Washington Post.

Congressman, thank you for joining us.  I have never heard -- I sometimes think Trump has brought deviation to the norm.  Now the Speaker is saying he ought to be in prison.  Imagine you live in some rinky dink country out in the world that has looked up to ours.  You know, some fourth world country doesn`t even have democracy.  And here, we have the leader of the opposition saying the other guy is in prison.  This is stuff we used to see in Pakistan in the old days.  Defeat the guy then hang him.

FMR. REP. JOE CROWLEY (D-NY):  I do think though it`s in politic rhetoric.  But Pelosi is speaking to a number of wings within the party itself.  And I think she has to be heard to be strong on this as she`s taking a slightly different tack.

MATTHEWS:  I get you.  That`s applied (ph) to it.  In other words, so she said she really doesn`t like Trump, that makes up for the fact she is not impeaching him.

CROWLEY:  Because, you know, Chris, I have been saying all along -- right.  And what I`ve been saying all along is that she doesn`t believe in a banana republic.  She thinks that elections have consequences.  And impeachment shouldn`t be used every time a person doesn`t like the President.  You know, you hear about it all the time now.  It`s almost become the norm, when someone doesn`t like it, that the other party tries to impeach them.

So what she`s been saying is stay the course, do your jobs, investigate and let the truth lead where it will.

MATTHEWS:  But she`s not going to impeach.

CROWLEY:  Well, you know what --

MATTHEWS:  Okay.  I have asked a guy --

CROWLEY:  I`ve read the second volume of the Mueller report and it`s pretty damning.

MATTHEWS:  I know what you think.  I mean, I accept it.  But I don`t believe she`s going to be for impeachment a year from now.  So you do that.  But I -- I mean, Shannon, all the reporting said she is delaying.  She`s saying, I want to hear from one more witness.  I want to hear from Don McGahn.  I want to hear from Mueller.  I want to hear from -- nobody believes that after those hearings, we have a front page story the next day that McGahn says he`s told him to fire Mueller, right?  But he didn`t follow-up.  He didn`t fire Mueller.  So where is the case?  I can see this coming apart.

SHANNON PETTYPIECE, BLOOMBERG NEWS WHITE HOUSE REPORTER:  Yes.  I mean, our reporting indicates that this prison comment was meant to mean more exactly what you were saying that I don`t want to impeach.  Let`s find any other method than impeachment, like indict him and put him in prison after he is out of office.

MATTHEWS:  She said I want him in prison.

PETTYPIECE:  Well, because she didn`t want to impeach him.  She said, I don`t want to impeach him, I want him.

MATTHEWS:  She didn`t say, I want to have a trial.

PETTYPIECE:  I believe the full quote (ph) is that I don`t want to impeach him.  I want him in prison.

MATTHEWS:  I want him in prison.

PETTYPIECE:  But as an alternative, I will do anything other than impeach this president is what she`s trying to say.

MATTHEWS:  I know.  I agree with you guys with your interpretations.

AARON BLAKE, SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST:  I mean, here is the thing.  That`s not her choice.  That`s the choice of prosecutors, the SDNY, other people in the Justice Department.  Also, she may -- they may not ultimately have that decision to make if the President is re- elected, which a lot of people say is a 40, 50, 60 percent chance depending upon who you ask.  The statute of limitations is going to run on most of the federal crimes that they can charge him with.  So how are you going to ultimately get him in prison if you can`t actually charge him after that second term?

PETTYPIECE:  And you can always impeach him during the second term.

BLAKE:  Yes.

MATTHEWS:  Somebody said the other day, I mean, everybody is a pundit now, I`m a pundit, that we should wait until the second term to impeach him.  But that would lose a lot of its propulsion by then.

PETTYPIECE:  Well, I mean, I guess that`s --

MATTHEWS:  If the American people twice elect the guy and then you impeach him?


MATTHEWS:  I mean, it`s been done.

PETTYPIECE:  Well, which what happened -- which was exactly what happened to Nixon in his second term.

The calculus in the White House though is that there is not going to be an impeachment.  They do not think there is enough support in the Democratic Party.  I don`t know if they are correct about.  But their calculus right now is that the democrats aren`t going to impeach because they don`t have the votes and the support, not because it will be bad politically, not because they don`t think the President committed a crime but because there is not the support among democrats.

MATTHEWS:  Okay.  Here is what I think.  Because I think Pelosi is the smartest speaker we`ve ever had in so many ways.  And I think she is calculating the following.  Remember the opening scene in Gone with the Wind, where all of sudden there is a cheer and we`re going to war with the Yankees?  Everybody is cheering.  At the end of the war, it was all the dead people in Atlanta, right, all the people lying in the graves out in the street there.

I get the feeling that she knows that from the second she moves impeachment hearings, Trump calls the democrats in the House the impeachment House.  You know, the impeachment democrats.  That`s all you are.  You`re worth nothing else.  You just want to overturn the election of 2016.  That`s all you are.  And every day, he dances on that grave from what you guys are doing and he wins the election.  I think that`s what she`s afraid of.

CROWLEY:  It seems to be his game plan, right?  But what I`ve said a number of times in this network, I think that what`s lacking this town apparently is character and integrity, and Pelosi has it in droves.  And that`s why she`d be able to keep this, her caucus together and behind here in this.  They believe in her.  She has more suasion over this caucus.  And it`s a testament to her friends.

MATTHEWS:  Could she keep the numbers pushing for impeachment down to under 40, roughly where it is now?

CROWLEY:  I think she can.  I think she can.  If that`s her will, I think she can do that.

MATTHEWS:  What kind of pressure is on Chairman Nadler?

CROWLEY:  I believe Jerry (INAUDIBLE) 35 years.

MATTHEWS:  I know.  He`s been stalwart (ph).  But he is getting pressure, I assume, from the newer members, like AOC and all of them, and he`s also getting pressure from the boss.

CROWLEY:  Here`s a guy that voted for the Iran deal, and why it matters.  A Jewish American himself, the largest supported by Jewish America and voted for the deal which stood that against the primary.  And Jerry --

MATTHEWS:  Against the hard right over there, yes.

CROWLEYT:  Jerry is a tough guy.  And Jerry also doesn`t believe in using the justice system to persecute, even this president.  He believes that he`ll follow the law, he`ll follow -- again, follow the truth.  Let the truth come out and let it lead where it goes.

PETTYPIECE:  And he can continue doing indictments and contempt votes and hearings and showing to that wing of the party that wants impeachment, we`re doing something, we`re exposing this, we`re even embarrassing the President.  He continues to paint (INAUDIBLE) without having to go down the impeachment route.  So they can accomplish a lot of the things they may want to accomplish without having to do --

MATTHEWS:  Well, I`ll talk about what happened on Tuesday night at that rough meeting apparently between her and the chairman, the Speaker and the Chairman.  Given the chance, Nancy Pelosi refused to comment on Trump`s possible impeachment while commemorating the fallen heroes of D-Day.  She didn`t play Trump`s game today.  Watch.


ANDREA MITCHELL, MSNBC HOST:  Do you worry about the politics right now, impeachment and everything else on the table and how they can further divide us?

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA):  Well, again, with all due respect to your question, I`m not here to talk about impeachment.


MATTHEWS:  I have to wonder about this media.  I know Andrea is the best there is, but we probably shouldn`t talk nasty boy politics in front of the graves.  Everybody -- we have all been there, I think.  It`s an astounding place to go and the gravesites are something else, and it is sacred ground.

BLAKE:  And it`s always been that politics stops at the water`s edge and that would doubly true when you`re standing in front of a cemetery honoring dead American service members.  But, you know, this eroded over the course of the last several years.

I was looking back in 2016 when Vice President Biden was in Latvia.  He made a dig at President Trump who is then running for the presidency talking about how he didn`t respect NATO, he didn`t understand Article V.  And then, of course, the President comes in and then all bets are off when the President is in office.

MATTHEWS:  Why don`t they go over to Arlington to debate politics?

CROWLEY:  No, you don`t.

MATTHEWS:  And cross the river for him.

CROWLEY:  I also think it was kind of a softball for Nancy.  He tossed this up.  And instead of attacking the President, she showed who she really is.  Our character again comes through.  We`re at a scared place, a solemn, and this is not the place for it.  And I think it gave Nancy an opportunity to show what she`s really made of.

MATTHEWS:  At least one 2020 candidate is stepping her rhetoric when it comes to impeaching the President.  Here`s Senator Elizabeth Warren last night during Chris Hayes` town hall.


SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA):  Donald Trump, as president, delayed, deflected, moved, fired, and did everything he could to obstruct justice.  If he were any other person in the United States, based on what`s documented in that report, he would be carried out in handcuffs.


MATTHEWS:  So, Shannon, there you see the divide between the parliamentary responsibility of the Speaker and the chairs of the committee and the road show.  The road show is to speak to the animated, activated, energetic left of the Democratic Party who were out for blood.

PETTYPIECE:  And, say, Elizabeth Warren, I think, many people forgot she was running and then she came out real strong on impeachment.  It was one of the first candidates to come out strongly on impeachment.  And we`ve kind of seen her star rise since then.

MATTHEWS:  Smart.  Go through the whole thing now.  Bernie is not doing that.

PETTYPIECE:  Right, no, he`s not.  And, I mean --

MATTHEWS:  She`s catching up.

PETTYPIECE:  And I would say maybe a month -- I felt like a month of ago, I was not hearing people talk about her.  It was pretty much that Bernie had the left wing of the party sort of locked up.  And now, people are telling me, they were in Oakland and they saw this crowd enormous crowd and Elizabeth Warren`s event.  So, yes, she has been kind of a leader among the 2020 candidates on this impeachment, and I think that`s helped her . MATTHEWS:  Aaron, you watch that.  Because I`m watching her and I think if you are willing to burn your bridges to the middle for the short time for the next year and you`re willing to go hard left on something that`s so emotional, getting rid of this president, I mean, I hear it everywhere, get rid of this president.  And the people that are progressives or liberals or people on the left are so angry about this, they want it over with. When are we going -- people stop me everywhere.  Why don`t we get rid of this guy?  And she says, I want to get rid of him.

BLAKE:  Yes.  I saw that clip and I said it almost looks like she is planning this to put in a campaign ad down the line.  And I wouldn`t be surprised if she does.  But I think what she`s being smart about here is she is doing that.  She came out early for impeachment.

MATTHEWS:  But couldn`t Bernie do this if he wanted to?

BLAKE:  He could.  But she`s also marrying it with the I have a plan thing.  She`s putting out detailed policy proposals.  People are accusing Joe Biden right now kind of being a one-note candidate.  He`s all anti-Trump.  That`s the only thing he can talk about right now.  She is doing this thing that Biden is doing in certain ways, but she`s also providing very detailed things that liberal voters can look at and say, I would like this person even if she wasn`t so anti-Trump.

MATTHEWS:  Well done (ph), sail and cargo, as I say in politics.  You have to have the sail, which is excitement and all the drift, all the people pushing for you, and you have to have something to bring along.  Do you agree with that?


MATTHEWS:  And I think she`s got it.  I think -- I keep thinking one standard, Joe.  Can they carry Pennsylvania?  And with her, I don`t know.  I think Biden could.  I think kamala could, a little riskier.  But in the end, it`s going to be on conditions and how to --

CROWLEY:  What I heard about Elizabeth Warren is, for many democrats, is that she has a good message.  She has a message that resonates, but it`s the messenger.

MATTHEWS:  I know.  That`s the challenge.

PETTYPIECE:  And to your point of sail and cargo, if you`re just an anti- Trump candidate, well, let`s say, you get elected, Trump is gone.  Then what are you?  And then that question is going to come about.  But I think you`re also right there.

MATTHEWS:  Or if you`re running on the hard left, you`re going to have Medicare for all and all those good things, college expenses, and you confront Mitch McConnell in the Senate, and you`re a senator with nothing to get anything done, nothing.  That`s a possibility.  Your cargo is dumped.

PETTYPIECE:  And to your point, it`s Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin is all that matters so far.

MATTHEWS:  Former Congressman Joe Crowley of New York, Shannon Pettypiece, who is brilliant, because I agree with her, and Aaron Blake.

Coming up, the two faces of President Trump, the not so good.  One is okay, one is awful, and face Janus masks.  You know, the President got all his lines right about the heroism of allied forces on D-Day, but in his spirit time, it was Trump airing his grievances about London`s Mayor, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and even Bette Midler at 1:30 in the morning local London time.  He`s got Bette Midler on his (INAUDIBLE) voice singing.  What`s going on with this guy?

The President`s next big patriotic gesture comes next month, however, when he turns America`s 4th of July celebration into a star spangled MAGA rally.

We`ve got much more aggravate here.  Stick with us.



TRUMP:  One these shores, on these blocks (ph), on this day 75 years ago, 10,000 men shed their blood and thousands sacrificed their lives for their brothers, for their countries and for the survival of liberty.


MATTHEWS:  Welcome back to HARDBALL.  That was President Trump today honoring American and allied soldiers on the 75th anniversary of D-Day, where more than 150,000 troops stormed the beaches of Normandy, turning the tide of World War II.

Well, the President was joined by French President Emmanuel Macron and living veterans of the invasion.  We saw that today.  These guys were in their 90s.  Trump paid tribute to the courage and sacrifice of the fighting men and the enduring ties of the military alliance that went on to defeat the Nazis.  Here he goes.


TRUMP:  To all of our friends and partners, our cherished alliance was forged in the heat of battle, tested in the trials of war and proven in the blessings of peace.  Our bond is unbreakable.

To the men who sit behind me and to the boys who rest in the field before me, your example will never ever grow old.


MATTHEWS:  But that somber reflection stood a stark contrast with the interview he gave to Fox News just minutes earlier, minutes, using the head stones of the fallen heroes as a backdrop as he slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other critics.  It`s in keeping with what The New York Times called a split screen of a president, embracing regal respectability on one side and settling scores on the other.

He was hosted by Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace just hours after calling London`s Mayor a stone cold loser on Twitter.  He fired off Tweets in the middle of the night calling Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer a creep and actress Bette Midler, as I said, at 1:30 in the morning a washed up psycho.

And then, once again he flipped the switch, acting presidential at a commemoration event reading from Franklin Roosevelt`s prayer to the country the night before D-Day.


TRUMP:  Almighty God, our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor.  A struggle to preserve our republic, our religion and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity."


MATTHEWS:  For more, I`m joined by Peter Baker, chief White House correspondent with "The New York Times," and Jon Meacham, NBC News historian and co-author of "Songs of America."

Let me start with Jon.

Jon, do you think it`s, let`s say, plausible that the Democrats will run against Trump next year the way that W. ran against Clinton, by saying, when I take the oath of office, I will also take an oath to uphold the dignity of the Oval Office?  And everybody knew what that meant.  It was about Monica and Bill. 

Do you think the Democrats care that much about the dignity of the office that you can run against this guy for what a clown he has been in his political behavior in the last few days? 


I think it`s there for the picking.  We have a situation where the president never pivoted.  The incumbent president never moved from professional wrestler and provocateur to the person who, in another phrase of Franklin Roosevelt`s, the presidency, which is preeminently a place of moral leadership. 

And so I think the case for dignity, I think the case for respect and empathy is going to be a huge part of this. 

Now, the interesting question, of course, is whether that moves enough people, because, clearly, the people who are with the president have long ago discounted, or perhaps even worse, decided that they enjoy this bifurcated behavior.  It is part of the show. 

And so the question is, are there enough people in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Florida who would like to have a president who acts and sounds like a president all the time, not just when he decides to try it? 


Peter, I want to get to a fact-check here, because I`m looking at Macron, the president of France.  And he`s got his own problems too.  He`s no perfect leader, whatever. 

But he must have heard the president of the United States say yesterday -- or today, actually, in a different time zone -- that we have this bond with Europe.  We have this bond that`s unshakable.  But he called it a military bond. 

What`s happening with the idea -- for months now, Trump, ever since he took office, has been trashing our alliance with Europe, trashing our need to respect our allies in NATO especially.  And, at the same time, he comes out today and acts like, I`m your best brother in the world.  We have an unshakeable bond with Europe, with the Allies from World War II. 


Well, imagine that.  President Trump is sometimes inconsistent.  I know we should...


BAKER:  ... maybe be surprised, but it`s not.

Look, I think what he would say is that they have differences on issues like trade, on defense spending and so forth, but they can still be close allies.  It doesn`t sound like that a lot of the time.  That`s the trick, is that when he badgers them on an issue that other presidents have also had with Europe about their -- how much they contribute to the defense of Europe in terms of NATO, he does it in a way that is so personal and so visceral, it doesn`t sound like two allies urging each other to do better. 

It sounds like two -- two adversaries who don`t particularly like each other.  So when he gets out there, as you say, and mouths the words that have been scripted for him for an event like this, the words you have to say in this kind of a moment, it does kind of ring against the grain of the other policies and adversarial approach he`s been taking to Europe. 


Well, the president`s dual personality was perhaps most evident as he discussed the bravery of these soldiers of D-Day, after downplaying his own lack of service in Vietnam during his interview with Piers Morgan yesterday. 


TRUMP:  Before the war, many had never ventured beyond their own community.  Now they had come to offer their lives half-a-world from home.

They came, wave after wave, without question, without hesitation, and without complaint.

PIERS MORGAN, TALK SHOW HOST:  You were not able to serve in Vietnam because of a bone spur condition in your feet.  Do you wish you had been able to serve?  Would you liked to have served your country?

TRUMP:  Well, I was never a fan of that war.  I will be honest with you.  I thought it was a terrible war.  I thought it was very far away. 

Nobody ever -- you know, you`re talking about Vietnam, and, at the time, nobody ever heard of the country. 


MATTHEWS:  Jon, you don`t have to be a historian to recognize that, in 1968, when he got that deferment for his bone spur from that concierge doctor in Manhattan, a tenant of his father who did it as a favor, apparently, to know that the Vietnam War was the number one issue in the country at the time.

It was dividing our country like we can`t believe even today.  And to say that nobody ever heard of Vietnam is absurd. 

MEACHAM:  It is.

And it`s -- by 1968, the average casualty rate per day killed in action was 47 -- 47 Americans died every day, on average, in 1968.  And it was -- the war was one thing in 1966.  The war was a very different thing in `68-`69.

It was a generational choice that many people made.  But let`s be clear.  A lot of people didn`t have a choice.  A lot of people who didn`t have the means and the ability to manipulate the draft or move out of the line of fire were those -- and then people had to go in their place. 

And we are still dealing with the very un-American, unequal fallout from the inequality of the way the draft worked. 


You know, Peter, back when I was a speechwriter, our goal was to read what the president said, keep up with him.  Do Trump speechwriters listen to what he says?  There`s no connection between what he said about D-Day and what he said about himself.  There`s no connection.  That`s not the same person talking.

One is a dodger, and one is an absolute patriot. 

BAKER:  Yes, he says, look, I have made up for it because, in effect, now, by giving the military a lot of money through the budget, that should -- that should take care of any issues that are out there.  He`s so pro- military, he`s saying that it doesn`t really matter whether he personally served or not. 

Now, look, he`s not the first president to not have served in Vietnam.  What`s really interesting, of course, is, we have three of the last four presidents are Vietnam era generation, and all three of them managed to avoid serving in Vietnam.  Bill Clinton, of course, avoided the draft.  And George W. Bush served, but served in the Texas Air National Guard at home. 

President Trump, as you mentioned, had the bone spurs.  So, Americans used to think that was a pretty important qualification for a president.  Today, they look at it differently.  And I think that, because of the ambivalence a lot of people feel about Vietnam, the president can probably say one thing about Vietnam, another thing about the D-Day soldiers who went in 75 years ago.

MATTHEWS:  I think if the Republicans knew a Democratic president had pulled that number that he did with his bone spur, they would never forgive him, never. 

Anyway, thank you, Peter Baker.  Thank you, Jon Meacham. 

Up next: Joe Biden being separated right now from the rest of the Democratic pack on the issue of federal funding for abortion.  Is government funding for abortion going to be a Democratic litmus test come 2020 already?

You`re watching HARDBALL. 


MATTHEWS:  Welcome back to HARDBALL. 

Former Vice President Joe Biden is maintaining his front-runner status, with a new poll out from Reuters showing him with double the support of his nearest rival, Senator Bernie Sanders. 

And now Biden`s Democratic challenges are looking for ways, of course, to chip away at that lead of his.

On Wednesday -- that`s yesterday -- an opportunity presented itself for that when the Biden campaign confirmed to NBC News that the former senator -- he was a senator for all those years -- continues to support the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits the use of federal money, federal funding for abortions. 

The Hyde Amendment was first passed in 1976, three years after Roe v. Wade, and has been attached to every health appropriations bill since then, including Obamacare.  His Democratic challenges were quick to oppose Biden`s position, while mostly not hitting him personally. 


SEN. CORY BOOKER (D-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  Things like the Hyde Amendment are attacks on women.  And I will continue to fight to rip them down and empower women to have better access to contraceptive care, to health care, and the kinds of things that help them live healthy lives, where they control their destinies, not a bunch of politicians. 

BETO O`ROURKE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  I hope that Joe Biden rethinks his position this issue.  Perhaps he doesn`t have all the facts.  Perhaps he doesn`t understand who the Hyde Amendment hurts most.  And, again, it`s lower-income communities, communities of color.

SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  We do not pass laws that take away that freedom for the women who are most vulnerable. 


WARREN:  It`s been the law for a while.  And it`s been wrong for a long time, because it really is.  It`s just discrimination. 



MATTHEWS:  Historically, senators from both sides of the aisle have voted in favor of funding bills with the Hyde language included with it. 

Every current or former member of Congress running for president has, in fact, voted in favor of bills that do include the Hyde Amendment.  However, eight of those members have co-sponsored a bill that would repeal it, the Hyde Amendment.

For more, I`m joined by former Republican Congressman Carlos Curbelo of Florida, and Zerlina Maxwell, senior director of progressive programming for SiriusXM. 

How does this work, do you see it now, in the next couple of weeks, even days, Zerlina, politically?

ZERLINA MAXWELL, SIRIUSXM RADIO:  I think that this is a point of vulnerability for Joe Biden. 

And I actually think that, eventually, we may see him shift his position on the Hyde Amendment because of the pressure from the Democratic base.  This is an issue that came up in 2016.  And Hillary Clinton was a staunch, staunch opponent of the Hyde Amendment and was very vocal about repeal.

It ultimately ended up in the DNC-adopted platform at the convention because the Democratic Party right now has shifted on this issue.  We understand that the Hyde Amendment essentially means that there are two classes of women in the United States.  One class of women can afford abortion, and they have access to all of their constitutionally allowed health care options. 

And then poor women, mostly women of color, do not have that access and those -- freedom to exercise their rights.  And, frankly, one in five American women of reproductive age are on Medicaid.  So, this is a lot of American women we`re talking about. 

MATTHEWS:  Let`s talk about the numbers now. 

Basically, I`m looking at the number here; 58 percent of the country, that large, Democrat, Republican and independent, 58 percent are against using Medicaid or government money, taxpayer money, to pay for abortions.  That`s a pretty decent majority. 

On the other hand, among Democrats, Clinton supporters when they did this poll, 57 percent, another healthy majority among Democrats, are for it. 

So, Congressman, what do you think of this trade-off?  Because it seems like, if you just look at this in political terms, obviously, Biden is with a minority of Democrats -- there may be 30 or 40 percent of Democrats who are against this funding.  The whole country as a whole is, by margin, against it. 

What`s that tell you politically, as he goes from Iowa, to New Hampshire, to South Carolina, to California?

CARLOS CURBELO (R), FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN:  Chris, Joe Biden is running an unconventional campaign for a primary. 

He is basically not apologizing about the fact that he`s running as a consensus-builder, as someone who wants to build a coalition to try to win in November.  He`s almost looking past the primaries.  Now, that`s dangerous.  And the big question here is whether Democratic base voters are going to tolerate this kind of candidacy, where Biden isn`t apologizing, he`s owning his positions. 

And he`s basically announcing or making it clear that he`s not going to change who he is, that he`s been a dealmaker his whole career.  He`s reached across the aisle.  And I think he`s signaling here to a lot of those independent voters, those swing voters who will make the decision in November of next year as to who`s going to be the next president that he is going to govern from the middle. 

Again, this is dangerous.  This is unconventional these days, as both parties have moved, Republicans to the right, Democrats to the left.  So it`s a dangerous strategy for a primary.  We will just have to see if Democrats will tolerate this kind of approach. 

MATTHEWS:  Well, do you think it`ll become a litmus test, Zerlina? 

MAXWELL:  I do think it will become somewhat of a litmus test.  I`m not saying that people will not support Joe Biden only for this reason. 

But I think this goes to a litany of reasons why his candidacy is under such scrutiny, not just because he`s the front-runner, but he was in the Senate for longer than I was alive, Chris. 


MAXWELL:  And he has a record that doesn`t jibe with current views on many, many issues, not just race, not just abortion, but also criminal justice reform.


CURBELO:  But, Chris -- but, Chris...

MATTHEWS:  Go ahead, Congressman.

CURBELO:  Chris, I think Joe Biden`s message to, not just Democrats, but to the country, is that he wants to win in November.

And, sure, that means sacrificing some of the decisions that would be made in a primary process.  We know that there`s a lot of pandering to the bases of each party in primaries.

MATTHEWS:  I know.

CURBELO:  We have seen that a lot over the last decade.

Joe Biden is saying, I`m going to be principled.  I want to govern from the middle.  I want a change.  And perhaps the change in politics these days is to not go for the base strategy, to try to win those middle-of-the-road voters. 


MAXWELL:  But what about the women who are hurt by this policy? 

MATTHEWS:  I know.

MAXWELL:  I think that`s what the conversation the Democratic base is having right now, is about who is negatively impacted by this policy. 

MATTHEWS:  Right. 

MAXWELL:  And it`s women of color who are a very important constituency...

MATTHEWS:  I`m with you.

MAXWELL:  ... that Biden will need in the primary and the general.

MATTHEWS:  Strong words, and true words, I think.

Anyway, on Tuesday, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on threats to reproductive rights in America.  And during the hearing, the chairman of the committee, Jerry Nadler, went on after a Republican member for wanting to impose, as he put, his beliefs on other Americans.

Take a look at this quote. 


REP. JERROLD NADLER (D-NY):  The rhetoric from the ranking member of the subcommittee is heartfelt and sincere. 

It is also arrogant, in that it seeks to impose his and certain other people`s moral commitments on everybody else who don`t -- on people who don`t share those moral opinions. 

The power of the state should not be used by one segment of society to impose its moral or religious beliefs on another segment of society. 


MATTHEWS:  Congressman, I think you could argue that those words could be used just as well from people who are -- who believe that abortion is wrong morally, it`s of grave moral consequences to them, and they don`t want their money or their government supporting it by funding it. 

And, therefore, it`s the same way you could argue a person who doesn`t share a maybe evangelical or Roman Catholic belief about the unborn or the fetus life or whatever and the importance of life, if you don`t share in that, you shouldn`t be out -- shouldn`t be ignored and overlooked. 

This is a tricky question. 

CURBELO:  Well, Chris -- yes, Chris, I...

MATTHEWS:  And I don`t think anybody can claim high moral ground, when there`s so much moral consequence, both sides, in this issue. 

CURBELO:  Yes.  Yes.

I`m a Catholic.  And I`m pro-life.  And I can certainly relate to that.  And I think that`s why so many Democrats over the years have agreed to compromise with Republicans on this issue and to say, even though we, those of us who are Democrats, support abortion rights, we will go ahead and agree that taxpayers who may strongly disagree with this policy -- in my case, I do -- that taxpayers not be forced to pay for these abortions. 

So, it`s a very controversial issue.  This has been going on, Chris, since before...

MATTHEWS:  I know.

CURBELO:  ... Roe vs. Wade, the divide in our country.

But the fact is...

MATTHEWS:  I got to go.

CURBELO:  ... even a lot of those Democrats who today are campaigning and criticizing Joe Biden have voted in spending bills for this policy exactly for that reason, because they don`t want to impose abortion on American taxpayers. 

MATTHEWS:  We don`t as a country hold the same values.  We don`t all hold the same values. 

Thank you, Congressman, former congressman.  As always, Zerlina Maxwell.

Up next, from a celebration of our country`s independence to a celebration of Donald Trump?  A closer look at the president`s plans to insert himself into what has been a nonpartisan, well, celebration on the Fourth of July. 

We`re back after this. 


MATTHEWS:  Welcome back to HARDBALL.

For a man who loves pomp and circumstance, President Trump has received his fair share of it this week.  Meeting with the queen of England and being hosted for a state banquet at Buckingham Palace. 

And today, he participated in a D-Day commemoration alongside French President Emmanuel Macron that include a flyover, they`re they are, of military aircraft.  Well, in just four weeks, President Trump, always the showman, will be putting himself at the center of an annual celebration here at home that is typically remained a political.  U.S. Park Police and D.C. officials have confirmed to "The Washington Post" that the president will deliver remarks from the Lincoln Memorial to the crowd celebrating the Fourth of July. 

He will be the first president in almost seven decades to do so.  The last was President Harry Truman back in 1951 for the 175th anniversary for the Declaration of Independence. 

It was back in February, of course, that President Trump said he was considering holding an event on the Fourth of July. 


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  We are thinking about doing something which would become perhaps a tradition, a salute to America on July 4th or July 4th weekend.  It could be a very exciting day.  The fireworks is there anyway, we just saved doing fireworks.  We get free fireworks because it`s already being done. 


MATTHEWS:  Two of those members are gone right now. 

The president has been eager to find a way to insert himself into this country`s celebration ever since he was dazzled by France`s Bastille Day celebration in 2017.  He even talked about hosting a parade with tanks rolling down Pennsylvania Avenue. 

And not surprisingly, the reaction to the president`s plan has been largely negative, with one member of the U.S. Congress comparing it to the old Soviet Union. 

We`ll get to that, next.


MATTHEWS:  Welcome back to HARDBALL.

President Trump`s plans to deliver a speech at this year`s Fourth of July celebration is receiving push back from lawmakers who are worried the president will try to make it all about him.  Three senior House Democrats, including Majority Leader Steny Hoyer sent a letter to the president asking him to reconsider his plans.

And Washington, D.C.`s nonvoting representative, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes-Norton, told "The Washington Post", you never want to make events like this around a single person.  This is the difference between the Soviet Union -- the old Soviet Union and the United States.  Cults of personality are not how we operate in this country. 

For more, I`m joined by herself, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, and Dana Milbank, political columnist for "The Washington Post".

Congresswoman, it`s great to have you on and I know you`re protecting home turf here.  It`s your District of Columbia, it`s your capital city, and Trump wants to turn it into a MAGA event. 

REP. ELEANOR HOLMES NORTON (D-DC):  He does and he is trying to commandeer the holiday that is perhaps most nonpartisan in our country.  I mean, it`s all about -- where are those fireworks come from?  They came from Frankfort.  That`s what they did for joy.  We are doing them to this day. 

If you go to the Mall, and that`s where we usually have, in the foot of the capital, you won`t be able to tell a Democrat from a Republican.  Presidents do not insert themselves into these holidays.

What do we do there?  We have music.  We have picnics.

But once a president who was a political figure inserts himself into a holiday of this kind, he invites protests.  That`s the last thing we need on the Fourth of July.  Bring us together. Bring us together, don`t pull us apart on the Fourth of July.


MATTHEWS:  Well, speaking of that, Congresswoman, I`m imagining what the president has in mind is the traditional concerts and entertainment at the foot of the capitol, west front, which he had for years, and have these dueling banjos situations where he`s down -- simultaneously at the Lincoln Memorial talking to his troops. 

There will be protests -- the congresswoman said, there will be protests against him or for him.  Certainly against him.  It`s not going to be pretty. 

DANA MILBANK, POLITICAL COLUMNIST, THE WASHINGTON POST:  It doesn`t matter if he`ll claim the crowd size was all there because of him.  No, I mean, I suspect he would be very happy with that outcome because it`s sort of a living embodiment of the polarization that he does. 

I`m not surprised that he`s tried to do that.  I`m surprised it`s taken him this long.  I mean, think about it, he`s already announced that he made it to safe to say merry Christmas again.  He tried to take over Veterans Day with the parade.  He was asked on Thanksgiving what he is thankful for and he said he is thankful for himself and for his leadership. 

So, he is injecting himself into every American tradition.  So, we shouldn`t be surprised by this.  I mean, the question is where does this end? 

MATTHEWS:  Well, we have the head of the Republican Party, nationally, Congresswoman, who thinks it`s great because on Fourth of July, she said, it should be a celebrate -- chance to be celebrating our president. 


MATTHEWS:  This stuff I`ve never heard before.  Go ahead.

HOLMES NORTON:  How about celebrating our country?  That`s what I thought it was all about. 

And even people who don`t think much about their country every day do think about the birth of a nation.  That`s the time to celebrate it.  When you mention Harry Truman, remember, that was on an anniversary of our independence. 

This is his perhaps third try to insinuate himself into a holiday of this kind.  And, by the way, I`m not sure he wants to go to the Mall.  That`s a wide open space.  It`s not a good place to be on the Fourth of July with a crowd like that. 

He says the Lincoln Memorial.  That was where we had the march on Washington. 


HOLMES NORTON:  Presidents don`t go there just to be going there.  Even if he were to give a completely Fourth of July nonpartisan speech, it would be very much resented that he stole the Fourth of July for his own political purposes. 

MATTHEWS:  He will probably go after Bette Midler there anyway. 

Let`s watch RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel saying this is also a day we should be celebrating President Trump. 


RONNA ROMNEY MCDANIEL, RNC CHAIR:  We are celebrating the anniversary 75 years of D-Day.  This is a time where we should be celebrating our president, the great achievements of America, and I don`t think the American people like this constant negativity.  There are times when we should be lifting our president, especially when he`s overseas. 


MATTHEWS:  Republican Party.  She thinks the party is the Trump party, we should celebrate Donald Trump on the Fourth of July. 

MILBANK:  This is for the state -- it`s him.  This isn`t a president.  This is Louis XIV hat we`re talking about. 


HOLMES NORTON:  We don`t celebrate a person.  We don`t celebrate any person on the Fourth of July.  We celebrate the nation. 

MILBANK:  Not until this moment, Congresswoman.  But you can imagine sitting there in front of the Lincoln Memorial comparing his poll numbers favorably to Abe Lincoln.  I mean --

MATTHEWS:  And imagining the size of the crowd in his own mind. 

Thank you.  It`s great to have you on, Congresswoman.  Thank you, Eleanor Holmes Norton of the District of Columbia, and Dana Milbank. 

Up next, remembering a generation who taught us how to make a selfless silent gift of patriotic courage. 


MATTHEWS:  Well, today, we remember the servicemen who risked and in some cases lost their lives storming the beaches of Normandy 75 years ago.  Over 150,000 troops were carried by ships across the English Channel where they invaded a 50-mile stretch of the German-held coastline.  And there, they crossed the open beaches, completely exposed to enemy fire. 

It`s a generation of American men who never learned to brag.  My father`s best friends piloted the boats that delivered the troops to the shores of Normandy.  He did the same at other western landings in 1944.  And he and his wife would rightly come over for coffee and cake or play pinochle with my parents, and on Saturdays when he and dad played golf together.  And all that time, he never mentioned what he had done in the war. 

There was Uncle George, my father`s brother, who drove his tank right into the camps, the concentration camps, a liberator of the starving people they met and set free.  And he never talked about it with us, nor did my father- in-law who fought in the South Pacific. 

Tom Brokaw, that great man, called these guys the greatest generation, and they were also, as the "New York Times" had it in this morning`s paper, the quiet generation.  They didn`t brag.  They didn`t even share the stories of courage in that great war that united so many, a war that ended 50 million lives and changed so many more. 

So, tonight, in the quiet and safety of the 21st century America, I`d like to share and paying tribute to those who came before us and taught us how to do it, to take it, to get through it, and to make the selfless silent gift of courage of which the battle of Normandy was a gleaming emblem. 

My grandfather -- grandmother, rather, an immigrant from northern Ireland had three photographs on her bedroom wall all the time, her three sons who served in World War II for her new country.  She knew that those pictures were all that needed to be said. 

And that`s HARDBALL for now.  Thanks for being with us. 

"ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts right now.