Show: MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY Date: February 7, 2016 Guest: Christopher Borick; Basil Smikle; Elise Jordan; Boris Epshteyn; Camry Wilborn; Ryan Wolfe; Cam Midgol; Erica Jordan, Karen Weaver, Brittney Cooper, Michael Arceneaux, Dave Zirin, Adam Howard, Shana Renee Stephenson, Ben Leber, Jane Kim
MELISSA HARRIS-PERRY, MSNBC HOST: This morning, my question, will Beyonce and cam own this weekend?
Plus, the mayor of Flint, Michigan, joins me live.
And wake the vote is here.
But first, fight night in New Hampshire.
Good morning. I`m Melissa Harris-Perry.
And last night`s presidential debate was the eighth time we have seen the top contenders for the Republican nomination square off on a national stage. The last before Tuesday`s New Hampshire primary. But the first since the Iowa caucuses, shifted and reshuffled the field of contenders.
So in some ways, it was like watching them debate for the very first time. Gone was the undercard of low polling also rans (ph). We bid farewell to drop-outs Rand Paul, Mike Huckabee, and Rick Santorum - hi, guys. And other low pollers still in it to win it, Carly Fiorina and Jim Gilmore, they just didn`t make the cut for the stage.
But making Saturday night`s debate a prime time to reorder the politics of the 2016 race. And that seems to be precisely what happened at the GOP governors came out swinging from the opening bell and unrelentingly pursued the senators, the doctors, and reality TV hosts throughout the night.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: For anybody who is here tonight, if I get elected president, head out tomorrow and buy a seat belt because there`s going to be so much happening in the first 100 days, it`s going to make your head spin, and we`re going to move America forward. I promise you we are going to move this forward.
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: The shame is you would criticize somebody for showing up to work, plowing the streets, getting the trains back on time, when you have never been responsible for that in your entire life.
JEB BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What Donald Trump did was use eminent domain to try to take the property of an elderly woman on the strip in Atlantic City. That is not public purpose. That is downright wrong.
To turn this into a limousine parking lot for his casinos is not a public use.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes, it was revenge of the governors. After all the Republican Party currently controls, 31 governors seats in this country. And until the election of then-senator Barack Obama back in 2008, American voters had shown a pretty strong preference for electing governors to the White House.
See, governors are suppose said to be the adults, the ones with the real policy positions. Clear cross party constituencies and a record of tough executive decisions.
Look at what happens when Donald Trump is asked about the divide between law enforcement and communities of color.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`m telling you that not only me speaking, minorities all over the country, they respect the police of this country, and we have to give them more respect. They can`t act. They can`t act. They`re afraid for losing their pension, their job. They don`t know what to do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: OK. But then Governor John Kasich of Ohio weighed in with this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I created a big collaborative in Ohio made up of law enforcement, community leaders, the head of my public safety and a former Democrat liberal state senator Nina Turner, run it. They got together. They made recommendations on recruiting, on hiring, on the use of deadly force, and what we`re about to do is to bring community and police together so we can have a win-win.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: See the difference? Kasich saying specific things. Talking about, you know, Nina Turner. So what the Republican governors pushing back hard against the upstart outsiders, has the force finally awakened in the GOP establishment?
Joining me now are Boris Epshteyn, who is a Republican strategist and former communications aide with the McCain/Palin campaign. Elise Jordan, who is NBC News and MSNBC political analyst and a former senior adviser for policy with the Rand Paul campaign. Basil Smikle is executive director of the New York state Democratic Party, and Christopher Borick who is professor of political science and director of the Muhlenberg College Institute of public opinion.
So Boris, I have to tell you, Kasich was showing to me last night why governors typically win the U.S. presidency.
BORIS EPSHTEYN, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Kasich, Bush, and Christie all had a very good night. There is no question about it. I thought Christie on the attack on Rubio really showed why he is a strong executive. Showed that power that he has about him, which I think is attractive to voters in New Hampshire and beyond.
Kasich, he knows his stuff. He was in Congress for a long time. He will be the first to tell you about the Kasich claim. He knows his stuff. There is no question about it.
But I thought Trump still won the debate. Beyond all that, Trump leading, he didn`t do anything to hurt himself. And some of the answers he gave in particular, I thought on the police, he was good. And he did give more details on immigration. Gave more details on the economy. So while the governors were good, Trump was still the best.
HARRIS-PERRY: Elise, do you agree with that?
ELISE JORDAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: I do disagree with that. I think Christie`s moment with Rubio, if these debates actually matter, it could potentially break the race open just because Rubio was ordained as the establishment pick after his momentum in Iowa. And Christie just demolished him with what Christie`s message has been all week, that Rubio sticks to canned talking points, that he is a Republican version of Obama. And Christie just hammered that point home.
HARRIS-PERRY: You know, Obama got elected to the presidency twice, though. I mean, like -- so even if one dislikes President Obama, I just want to point out --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For the Republican Party, that a bad thing, right?
HARRIS-PERRY: No, no. I get it. But from an electoral standpoint, I will just point out that even to make that claim is still a bit of an odd one for electability. But part of what you said there, Elise, I think is useful, is you said if these debates matter.
And so, part of what I`m interested in is, you know, the granite state primary voters are famously late deciders. So does this debate matter? Not just for the national audience that is watching but for the actual New Hampshire primary?
CHRISTOPHER BORICK, PROFESSOR, MUHLENBERG COLLEGE INSTITUTE OF PUBLIC OPINION: Yes. That`s the point, Melissa, last night if you`re looking at it. And just think, if you`re giving Rubio some consideration, you are one of those moderate voters in New Hampshire and you are giving him a really good look and you are thinking electability, and you see that performance last night, are you really going to move from Kasich? Are you really going to move from Bush? Are going to move from Christie given what you saw from Marco Rubio last night?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, absolutely not.
JORDAN: I don`t know.
HARRIS-PERRY: But my question is, do you move from one of the outsiders to a Kasich. Like this must --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You like Kasich.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, I do. No. I have to say, I feel like, you know, I just want my country to have a grown-up in the presidency. And so, even though I`m not a Republican, I have to say, I want strong candidates on both sides. And Kasich makes me feel like, OK, good, I can just -- if he got elected, OK, I`m not going to agree but --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But this is a guy who even in his own state bucked the Republican Party by expanding Medicare on the affordable care act, which a lot of Republican governors did not do. I think of that group, he is a grown-up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Kasich is the Democrats` favorite Republican?
HARRIS-PERRY: Probably. Probably.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s a grown-up. He shouldn`t be insulting the audience in New Hampshire.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The only person you`re talking about is Donald Trump.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who you said won the debate?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He did win the debate. He will do anything do to hurt him. You`ll see in the polls, he`s been leading by 20 points as it is. The tracking poll will continue to do that. They only have two days. He didn`t do anything to take away votes.
HARRIS-PERRY: Does Trump actually have to win New Hampshire, though? So, here is -- you know, I thought that sort of what Trump did in Iowa, right, so coming in second, and then not giving a very strong concession speech. There`s ways to give concession speeches. And he didn`t kind of come out and do, yes, I was second, but I`m about to take this. He was like, all right, peace, I`m out. You know, does he need to actually win and win decisively in New Hampshire in order to keep going?
JORDAN: I think absolutely. I think he absolutely has to win in New Hampshire because the loser narrative with Trump will really start to set in. That`s a narrative that is repel about to his followers, to him. It brings out the absolute worst in him. And you look at Iowa. He made a lot of tactical errors in the run-up to Iowa. He didn`t have a strong ground organization. He thought he could cruise through on the strength of his polls. He didn`t do the debate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The debate could have hurt him. And he said that the debate could have hurt him. But we`re talking --
HARRIS-PERRY: The FOX debate that he didn`t do.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said that it couldn`t hurt him. He said he would do it all over the same way which, you know, he talk about the $6 million for veterans and all that. Now, we`re talking about him losing. He is up 20 points in the latest tracking poll. He may lose.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But the electorate is 40 percent independent.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s still leading by a lot. Everything we`re talking about Rubio being hurt, we didn`t talk about Trump being hurt. Maybe that exchange an eminent domain.
JORDAN: They have their own -- it`s a big rallying cry.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hasn`t hurt him in the polls.
HARRIS-PERRY: And go to beyond the polls for just a second. It is part of the reason I want you at the table. So what does the 40 percent undecided mean? Are those - I mean, given how well known a commodity Mr. Trump is at this point, are those 40 percent of folks who are likely to break for Mr. Trump late?
BORICK: You know, the New Hampshire undecided in many ways are in many ways really undecided. It is not like a lot of the people we polled in. There`s movement. We have seen this traditionally in the polls in New Hampshire. Lots of movement at the end, sometimes some surprises. Now, as Boris said, that`s a big, big gap.
EPSHTEYN: That`s a huge gap. Again, if you look from a voter who is not as zeroed in as we all are, right, in New Hampshire. You need to step back and you look at what Donald Trump did. And again, talk about police, talk about foreign policy, he is the one who came out the strongest. He didn`t even dive into the details to all the details like Kasich did, but he said when you elect me, I`m going to lead the country and we`re going to do well. And that is very (INAUDIBLE).
HARRIS-PERRY: You know whose name we did not say one time in this block? The guy who supposedly won Iowa, Ted Cruz. Did he manage to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?
Also, last night, the candidates that we were asked very important prediction. Who do they think will win today`s super bowl.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BUSH: Peyton manning is supporting me and I`m for Denver.
MARCO: Well, I was going for Peyton Manning. But now I`m going for Carolina.
BEN CARSON (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: With 100 percent certainty, I will predict the winner. It will be either Denver or Carolina.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Our country that we love so much doesn`t win anymore. We don`t win with the military. We don`t win on the border. We don`t win with healthcare. We don`t win with trade. If I`m elected president, we will win and we will win and we will win. Thank you. Thank you very much.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: That was Donald Trump during last night`s GOP debate channeling DJ Colin with his insistence on nonstop victory, going to win, win, win, but the primary season is rarely so clean. Take Senator Ted Cruz.
Sure, at first glance, Cruz`s numbers, it looks like he won in Iowa. Certainly looks impressive. But only in politics can you finish first and still not quite win. Take a look at the Iowa exit polls. Now, it`s clear that Ted Cruz won Iowa because he won among voters who described themselves as very conservative.
But take a look at those who describe themselves as somewhat conservative or moderate. Cruz falls way behind, trailing the candidate who surpassed expectations in Iowa, to land strong within spinning distance of Cruz and Donald Trump at that three spot. And you know who I`m talking about. There he was on caucus night with his wife and kids, looking victorious and there I say rather presidential, even in defeat. And polling in second place in New Hampshire.
So can you feel the Marco-mentum, well, maybe not after last night because, you know, although he wore out of Iowa, Senator Marco Rubio, let`s say he struggled in Saturday night`s debate in New Hampshire as the GOP governors targeted him and his inexperience.
Obviously, there was a talking about this last night, I mean, talking about what this looked like last night. How big -- clearly, he really did look like the winner out of Iowa even though he came in third. Ted Cruz, even though he won, looked awfully weak. Where do you think Marco will end up?
EPSHTEYN: He`s going to end up out of the top three because of this performance in New Hampshire. He crushed himself. Well, Chris Christie crushed him. And it was right out of the gate. And you could see it coming. It was like this slow pitch that you could see coming. And it just killed him. When he kept repeating himself with that Obama line --
HARRIS-PERRY: It was really that bad?
EPSHTEYN: I thought he was maybe having a breakdown. It reminded me of the 1960 Richard Nixon moment. He started sweating, his makeup came off. I mean, it was really bad. And what`s worse is I`m hearing --
HARRIS-PERRY: Was it worse than the little water bottle moment?
EPSHTEYN: I`m hearing the establishment on the Republican side now is taking another look at saying can we really support this guy? Now with them, look out for Jeb Bush or Chris Christie.
HARRIS-PERRY: Although, so it`s super bowl Sunday, though. Isn`t it true that sometimes you get that one loss, you actually don`t want to go into the super bowl with the perfect season, right? You actually don`t want to go in undefeated. You need a loss to kind of pull yourself back together unlike Marco.
BASIL SMIKLE, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DEMOCRATIC PARTY: He may have actually done as well as he did in Iowa is potentially because Donald Trump pulled out of the last debate and he took some of his voters. That might be the case. But I like what Axelrod said, that Chris Christie went full New Jersey.
HARRIS-PERRY: It was real jersey.
SMIKLE: I mean, yes, the man may have some great message discipline, but it did not resonate at all.
JORDAN: With Rubio, also, he had this momentum going into New Hampshire, but I was still not totally quite buying it because immigration is such a huge issue in New Hampshire, oddly enough. And I think that this debate chipped away at his invincibility because it hit him in immigration and that moment with Christie was so bad for him.
SMIKLE: He even flip-flopped on his football pick.
HARRIS-PERRY: He did.
EPSHTEYN: He said he was going to like Denver, but now Jeb Bush who used to be his mentor and he used to look up to but now he doesn`t, he picked Carolina. It`s kind of sad.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, that is it. Sometimes people are running, when they are running for president, they are actually running for different kinds of things, right. Sometimes people are running for HUD secretary, strange enough, but isn`t it also possible that part of what Marco Rubio is doing here is running for vice president, right? Like this, you know, it seems pretty clear that really whether Sanders or Clinton win that nomination on the Democratic side, it is highly likely going to be actually the HUD secretary, Mr. Castro, who is very likely to end up the VP pick on the Democrat, side. Marco doesn`t make a bad VP pick, right, as a young guy with the beautiful family, kind of demonstrating the, you know, diversity on the Republican side. He doesn`t make a bad candidate.
EPSHTEYN: We tried the young guy thing with the good friend and now diverse. We tried Paul Ryan last time. You can`t just pick a VP candidate. And also, Rubio, if you look at the polling in Florida, Rubio doesn`t do well. What is most interesting of the numbers you showed in Iowa, 35 percent of moderates broke for Donald Trump? What does it tell you? It tells you that he really is appealing to a much broader spectrum - -
HARRIS-PERRY: You`re killing me with the Donald Trump. Are you really going to nominate him with the U.S. presidency?
EPSHTEYN: Right now, I mean, he`s probably the safe bet.
HARRIS-PERRY: Sir, are they really going to nominate Donald Trump for the U.S. presidency?
BORICK: There`s more than a fair chase of that happening.
And last night placed in that. I mean, I think that`s why it`s so important. I never want to overstate or go into hyperbole for a single debate, but the time last night. It was Rubio`s chance coming out of Iowa with momentum. He is feeling real momentum. And New Hampshire voters, as we talked about before, a lot of them are undecided. They`re finicky. They`re going to wait and they are going to look. And if they wanted electability, and a lot of Republicans want electability, in that moment last night where he had a chance to sway some of the voters and really say they can coalesce around them, he dropped the ball.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was really important last night.
SMIKLE: That`s why I think Ted Cruz won Iowa, because they feel he`s closer to Donald Trump in terms of ideology, but he`s also electable.
HARRIS-PERRY: But Ted Cruz disappeared last night. Didn`t you feel like that?
SMIKLE: I do feel he disappeared last night, but I think also Republicans like to see Donald Trump on stage because he`s saying a lot of things that Republicans want people to say, but I can`t imagine that they want him to be president of the United States.
EPSHTEYN: If you look at the polling in most states where you have seen recent polling, right, South Carolina, Florida, going to Super Tuesday. And again, all we can go on are polls now. You know, polls can be wrong, but Trump is winning state after state after state. Cruz is not -- let me finish. Cruz is --
HARRIS-PERRY: OK, (INAUDIBLE). And we appreciate it. We will give you a minute.
JORDAN: OK. No, Cruz has been running the best campaign by far, though, of all candidates. And we did see in Iowa where that really matters. You look at what Cruz is doing with and it is absolutely incredible. He had 77 micro-points that matter to Iowa voters. He had honed in on I think 30 people who supported states fireworks laws. Yes, his campaign is really going deep with hyper-data driven, so that matters.
HARRIS-PERRY: Ted Cruz is a nerd. Who knew?
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes, who just dropped out. That`s right. Iowa doesn`t matter for you.
EPSHTEYN: Iowa is not as big of a deal as it seems.
HARRIS-PERRY: Up next, the Republican candidates on reproductive rights.
But as we go to break, a word from the Democrats.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANDERS: I`m so sick of the 1 percent getting this preferential treatment. Enough is enough. We need to unite and work together if we`re all going to get through this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sounds like socialism to me.
SANDERS: Democratic socialism.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s the difference?
SANDERS: Huge difference.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Huge?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: After a strong finish in Iowa, Senator Marco Rubio entered Saturday night`s New Hampshire debate as a target for his GOP opponents. And under the intense pressure, he stumbled. But late in the debate, he was responding to tough questions with at least one really important, thoughtful response.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RUBIO: It`s a difficult issue because it puts in conflict two competing rights. On the one hand is the right of a woman to choose what to do with her body, which is a real right. On the other hand is the right of an unborn human child to live. And they are in conflict. And as a policymaker, I must choose which size takes presidents. And I chosen to ere on the side of life. I would rather lose an election than be wrong on the issue of life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: OK. I don`t agree with Mr. Rubio on this point, but I actually thought that the response represented exactly what any candidate has to do. After they win the primary, they have to pivot in the general. And what he did there was say this is actually a hard question. It`s one that puts into question two competing values. I recognize that Americans see there are two competing values and then I`m going to come down on my side.
EPSHTEYN: He didn`t give you really an answer there, right. He didn`t say that I`m pro-life with necessary exceptions which I believe in, also, right, health, incest, rape. He didn`t say that.
HARRIS-PERRY: He did. He said there`s competing ones, and then he said in there, then was like, but he came back with strong, like I don`t know. I feel like that felt stronger to me than the kind of just the pandering piece that sometimes -- and I don`t mean just around abortion. I mean, on a wide variety of issues where you`re going for like just the primary. There`s tape people will play your answers in the general election.
BORICK: I agree. I think that was his best moment in the whole evening. And I think one of it was, first of all, I do like, as a professor, the idea of competing goods.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes, right. Maybe, that`s what it is.
BORICK: A lot of these things are tough questions in politics. But also the point that he -- look, it`s going to be a tough decision. He`s going to have to hold his ground on a certain thing. You know what? I`m going to make some tradeoffs. And then make some tradeoffs in other things. I can`t make a tradeoff in this. I thought it was a good pitch that he made, especially to conservative Republican voters.
SMIKLE: Which is interesting because in the previous debate, I think he sounded more like that. That he was sort of in charge of the policy that he was talking about. I don`t agree with him on any of it, but he sounded a lot stronger. He sounded a little more thoughtful and a little more passionate. But all of that was lost last night.
JORDAN: I think it was in the first debate with Megyn Kelly. She asked him about his -- what he believed on abortion and did he believe abortion should be allowed in the case of rape or incest, and he gave the worst answer for a general election. And so, now this answer allows him to have a little cover if he does get the nomination, can say I have softened.
EPSHTEYN: Outside of the first ten minutes, he had an OK debate.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. But the first ten were death.
EPSHTEYN: The first ten was the headline, and it really killed him. And so, this was sort of buried beyond the headline.
HARRIS-PERRY: There was another moment, I have to say, when I`m making this point about, I need -- on both sides, I need a grown-up in charge. I was almost like this weird thing that happened around the selective service question. I want to play a little bit of the sound here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Tell me what you would say to American people out there who are sitting at home, who have daughters, who might worry about those answers, and might worry --
JEB BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Why would they worry?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That the draft is reinstituted.
BUSH: Well, the draft is not going to be reinstituted. But why if women are accessing --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you just going to do away with it?
BUSH: No, I didn`t say that. You asked the question not about the draft. You asked about registering.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You register for the draft.
BUSH: But we don`t have a draft.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: You know, that had been set up with, OK, now women can be in combat. So, should they have to register for the draft? And the right answer, right, has been over the years, no. Our daughters should not have to register for the draft. And each and every one of them was like, yes, they should register. I was like, I wonder if they know what they`re answering. It really was a question for me about whether or not there was an informational confusion about what selective service is for people who are planning to be the commander in-chief. And it was distressing for me. Was I reading that moment wrong?
EPSHTEYN: I thought the moderator tripped up Governor Bush, because he knew what he was talking about, and then she confused selective service with the draft. And they`re definitely not the same thing. As we know, selective service is something you register for early on, at 18, and then if there is a draft at some point, you`re eligible for the draft.
HARRIS-PERRY: But right now, only boys, only men have to register.
EPSHTEYN: I do think it should be both, right. I think it should be men and women at 18 should have to register because now, you know, women serve in military. They are able to participate in combat. There`s full equality. We should keep that consistent throughout.
HARRIS-PERRY: That`s a relatively new position is my only point.
JORDAN: I think this is actually a bright spot in Republican Party is trying to grow the platform when it comes to women. Because you know, Marco Rubio actually has consistently supported women in combat, since about 2013. And that`s been a really hotbed issue on the Republican side. And so, they are actually being consistent. And I thought Chris Christie really nailed the answer in terms of. And he also is surrounded by a ton of strong women in the top levels of his campaign. He is always been great with women`s issues. And so, I thought he particularly did well there.
SMIKLE: You talk about Chris Christie and pivoting in a general election. He is a man who hugs the president of the United States and he gets pillared by his own party for it.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, but then in that debate, you know, a few months ago, he also said kind of horrible things about the president.
SMIKLE: Absolutely. No. That`s absolutely right. And what`s interesting to me is that, you know, of the governors that -- I mean, he had this really strong, passionate response to government and to being the executive, which no one really, even among the governors, really could --
EPSHTEYN: He`s the most in charge of the governors, correct? He has something that Donald Trump has. He has that strength about him, but he`s also a governor. So he brings a long time of making executive decisions. I thought that that contrast that he drew with Rubio again early on came out so good for him. And also, the U.S. attorney experience that he has, talking about national security, talking about foreign policy. I wish they talked more about foreign policy last night, because that is really what the presidency should come down to. Bernie Sanders, for example, never talked about foreign policy.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. Well Madeleine Albright was clear about that yesterday.
Thank you to Boris, Elise, Basil and Chris. You know they are going to be back over the course of this election season. My panel is going to be back in the next hour.
Up next, we are going to go live to New Hampshire with the latest on the campaign trail. But before we go to break, we are going to be talking super bowl later in the show.
And NBC`s Kate Snow caught up with some political strategists and asked them about the game.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Super bowl.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m watching.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know who`s playing?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No. I take that back. The Eagles? I`m not sure. I`m on the campaign trail. I`m on the campaign trail.
HARRIS-PERRY: Today before the New Hampshire primary, Hillary Clinton is focusing on the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, which will host a Democratic debate next month. Now, Clinton will tour Flint today with the city`s mayor, Karen Weaver, and meet with the residents dealing with the consequences of the lead contaminated water.
NBC`s Kristen Welker joins me now from New Hampshire with more.
Kristen, what is the goal of Mrs. Clinton`s visit to Flint today?
KRISTEN WELKER, NBC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Melissa, good morning.
This is an issue that Secretary Clinton has been talking a lot about lately, both on the campaign trail. She is also been bringing it up at the debates. It`s an issue obviously that impacts a large African-American community in Flint, Michigan. So it is something that resonates with a lot of her constituents, particularly if you look at a state like South Carolina, where they have a large African-American population there. And a visit like this could actually resonate for the folks in South Carolina and some of those Super Tuesday states that are going to be very critical for Secretary Clinton, particularly if she loses here in New Hampshire.
Chuck Todd asked her about her trip earlier today on "Meet the Press." Take a listen to what she told him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`m worrying about the kids in Flint, Michigan, right now, trying to figure out what we`re going to do to make sure they are not damaged irreparably. The mayor asked me to come. This is as earliest we could get it done. I want to lend my support. I`m very hopeful that Congress which is trying to work in a bipartisan way will come up with funding to deal with the problems that have afflicted the community. And I`m going to keep doing everything I can to help them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WELKER: Melissa, Secretary Clinton trails Bernie Sanders here in New Hampshire by double digits. So once she leaves Flint, she`ll be back here in New Hampshire campaigning. And her goal here is to really try to close the double-digit gap. If she can narrow that gap to single digits on Tuesday, her campaign is going to try to sell that as a win to some extent because it`s not the loss than they could get if she loses by 20 points, for example.
So her strategy here has been to talk a lot about the work she has done for women`s rights. By the way, she`s trailing women voters here in New Hampshire, which surprised a lot of people. She`s trailing younger voters as well. So she is trying to reach out to them in her campaign speeches.
The other part of her strategy that we are seeing, Melissa, she has been talking about Senator Sanders` foreign policy criticizing him for that. And yesterday, she brought in one of her surrogate, former secretary of state Madeleine Albright, who had very strong words for senator Sanders in an interview that I did with her, saying he essentially doesn`t seem prepared on the foreign policy front. So that`s the strategy moving forward here in New Hampshire. Her husband, former president Bill Clinton, will be here on the trail today while she`s in Flint.
Back to you.
HARRIS-PERRY: Thank you so much NBC`s Kristen Welker in New Hampshire. And indeed, Madeleine Albright did have very strong words yesterday.
I`m going to speak live with the Flint mayor, Karen Weaver, at the top of the next hour.
But up next, wake the vote of wake Forest University is here live in Nerdland.
HARRIS-PERRY: All right, the premise is simple. If you want to understand American democracy, really understand it, then you can`t be just expected. You have to be part of the process. Which is why in January, Wake Forest University where I`m a professor, launched Wake the Vote. It`s a full year deep immersion, civic engagement program where students learn about American elections by, well, actually taking part in them.
So, you met two of my wake the voters on MHP show last week, just one day before their first Iowa caucus. And what a raucous caucus they had. I mean, these students, somehow, they managed to hang out with everybody from Marco Rubio to Sarah Palin to John Lewis to Josh Hutchinson, and they are just getting started.
Before the sun was up on Saturday morning, while wake the voters were bidding farewell to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and Benson Center Circle and they were on their way to New Hampshire to work in Tuesday`s primaries.
And here`s the twist with wake the vote. So it`s a whole year program, but initially, right now, we assign the students to campaigns without regard for partisanship or ideology. Now later this summer, the students is going to get to choose to work for an extended period of time for the candidate of their choice, but in the early primaries, wake the vote, offers these young people a fairly unique opportunity, to campaign for a day for a candidate that they may not have initially chosen. Now, the rules can be surprising.
Take Erica Jordan, who was assigned to work for Marco Rubio in Iowa. She wrote this piece afterward. The political process that I got to be part of in Iowa today made me challenge all of the assumptions I made about the parties and their bases, and my place within the system as a black woman, and I`m extremely glad that it did.
Joining me now is Erica Jordan, a first-year student planning to major in politics and international affairs and English. Cam Migdol who is a sophomore majoring in politics and international affairs who also live and work in Israel this summer. Ryan Wolfe who is a sophomore majoring in political science and international affairs and communication, and Camry Wilborn, a senior majoring in politics, international affairs and women and gender and sexuality studies.
I`m so happy to have to you all here and some although wake the vote colleague that are here standing behind you. There is 22 Wake the Voters altogether.
I want to start with you, Erica. I quoted a little piece. Everybody has to write reflections after each of your experiences. What happened for you in Iowa when Mr. Rubio actually walked into the Iowa campaign office? What was your experience?
ERICA JORDAN, WAKE FOREST STUDENT: It was totally energizing. All the volunteers had been working so hard beforehand. But I was kind of, you know, not feeling it. I was like, I don`t know. I`m the only person in here that looks like me. So it was little jarring at first. When he came in, I really got to meet him. He was so nice and so genuine that I got swept up into the spirit. I got really heavily invested in the success of his campaign.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. I got to say one of the most enjoyable experiences for me was sitting and watching the returns that night. And on the one hand, everybody rooting for their actual candidate. But also rooting for the candidate that they worked ford.
So Cam, you also worked on the Rubio campaign and had one of the selfies that sort of went mini viral that day. Actually, what`s it like to meet someone who is actually running for president?
CAM MIGDOL, WAKE FOREST STUDENT: It was incredible. You realize these are real people. And I think Rubio came off as such a real person, not just this larger than life kind of guy. And coming through, shaking our hands just talking to us, thanking us. It really, like Erica said, energized us. Really made us think whether we actually agree with him completely ideologically, like wow, I`m proud to work for this guy. Let`s do everything we can to help him win here because this is our job right now, and I like this guy right now.
HARRIS-PERRY: So I`m thinking to myself, you know, it is one thing to work across party lines. For you and me, it may have been even harder because you are working within the party that you generally identify with before the other candidates that who you would have normally thought you supported. You were working on Hillary Clinton`s campaign. Tell me about that experience for you.
CAMRY WILBORN, WAKE FOREST STUDENT: So I definitely think that I went into the experience not really committing to either candidate but leaning towards Bernie Sanders. But because I went in with such an objective view, I think that I was able to really evaluate the weaknesses and strength of who is campaigning. And so, with that being said, I think that she does a very good job with technology. And you know, she is experienced. This is her second time around. But on the other hand, I think that Bernie is really experienced in talking to voters and getting the young people and very figuring out what voters want.
HARRIS-PERRY: So you actually receptive on something very similar. In your piece, when you wrote about working for Hillary, you actually said precisely that in your piece. You said, you know, it is one thing to have a campaign that is sort of technically great, but you also learn something about sort of the connection to voters. Tell us more about it.
RYAN WOLFE, WAKE FOREST STUDENT: Exactly. But I think, you know, Hillary and her policy and her campaign operation is incredible for her voters. But I think one of the things that I felt on the ground that she was lacking was that kind of passion and being genuine to her voters, and just in the campaign in general. Sometimes it feels like she is an extension of her campaign operations herself. You know, she changed her policies and her views based on what people think.
And so, I think with Sanders, people really see someone who is passionate and he is steadfast in his points and he won`t change. So I thought that was really appealing, especially to youth voters.
HARRIS-PERRY: So Ryan, I`m worried that your parents, given that first you worked for Hillary Clinton and now you are on MSNBC, are going to take you out of Wake Forest, right. You`re a good Republican kid, raised in jersey. You worked on Republican campaigns. What has this experience been like for you, working across this line?
WOLFE: You know, it is really awesome. It is cool, kind of, to see the mechanics of how the other side works. And it also kind of neat to be part of the other team for a day and to really feel their, you know, world view and perspective and really get to learn about that. I think it helps kind of uniting people across partisan lines.
HARRIS-PERRY: When we come back, we are going to talk a little more about the Iowa experience. And I also want to ask you guys what you are looking forward to in New Hampshire, hopefully the main thing I`m looking forward to you is that the experience will not be on the travel back like it was before.
You can follow the progress of the Wake the Vote students online at #wakethevote. Remember, my real job Monday through Friday is I teach at Wake Forest University. So we are going to be following the Wake the Votes student throughout the campaign cycle. It`s so much fun. You can follow them online at #wakethevote.
HARRIS-PERRY: All the Wake the Vote students have to, of course, it`s a class, write about their experiences after they have had them. And this is part of a reflection from sophomore Cam Migdol after working on the Iowa caucuses.
He writes, this is Iowa, he explained. Do whatever you think is right. Don`t do what you think is wrong. This is what he ultimately instructed me. It was at that moment that I put the pieces of this remarkable Iowan political culture together. People trust each other to do the right thing. People aren`t afraid that others will cheat or corrupt the Democratic process.
So I love that you were talking about, you know, trying to figure out where you are supposed to put the signs, where you can do electioneering, you were talking to an older gentleman who was like, I`m not exactly sure what the rules are but do what you think is right. Tell me more about the lessons you took away from the Iowa experience.
MIGDOL: It`s an incredible political culture. Like I wrote that it involved so much participation. It`s not just stop by the poll and vote. It is you have to go to a caucus and sit there and maybe stand there in a corner and put your vote out there and even cheer for your candidate, sway other people. It`s not a secretive private thing. It`s I`m out here part of the community and we are all getting involved in this civic space, whether it`s a church or a gym. And I think it`s an incredible aspect of a Democratic process that you don`t see everywhere. And I think they`re very lucky to have and we are so luck a y to see.
And it contrasts so much in places like North Carolina where they just passed the strictest voting ID laws. You can`t just walk up the day and register right there at the place. You have to go to the RMV and get a new state issued I.D. And it`s just such a crazy contrast between two places yet the same government, the same country.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. Come in, we want you to be part of it. I mean, the kind of proximity of everybody together. You know, I was there when Erica you and some of the other Wake the Voters ran up and met Sarah Palin because she just happened to be standing there. And there`s just kind of an enthusiasm, like all of the folks that I see as characters in the American political system are actually available to have as part of my conversation here.
JORDAN: Yes. I think it was typical of what the Iowa experience is like overall. It was just being really engaged in the democratic process in a way that made it feel more realistic than it sometimes can because when you`re watching people on TV, it`s often these inflated personalities. But when you get to meet them in real life, you really could just see like an authentic side of them.
HARRIS-PERRY: So Ryan, one of the ways that we can close those gaps, I mean, part of it is like being physically together, you know, here comes Marco Rubio into the room. There`s Sarah Palin walking across the hotel lobby.
But the other is social media. And Wake the Vote has been doing a great job on social media. You are one of the most active members of both Wake the Vote but also even in your own social media. I have seen you have opportunities to interact across miles with folks. How is that part of how young people are engaging the political process and actually building political community?
WOLFE: Yes. Well, I think social media is really important because now for the first time really, you can reach anyone anywhere in the country in using like twitter and hashtags and things like that. If there`s certain things that people want to learn about on the ground, they can find it fast. And so we had the opportunity in Iowa really to be on the ground, to share our experiences with everyone and also to get feedback. So I think that`s really awesome.
HARRIS-PERRY: Cam, you`re a senior. And so, that means that for you, you are part of this big process, but you are also going to be making some big decisions moving forward. Is anything you`re learning as part of the process affecting kind of part of what you are thinking about next? Are you thinking about joining a campaign or going into politics? How is it impacting how you`re thinking about American politics in the broadest way?
WILBORN: I`m definitely thinking on engaging in politics after I graduated. Working on Hillary`s campaign definitely piqued my interest. I think that she could use me on her campaign. And so, I think I have a minor in communications. So I think that really getting involved in that sector in politics would be really engaging for me.
HARRIS-PERRY: I want to play a little bit sound from last night`s Republican debate. There was a conversation about millennial voters. I just want to play a little bit and ask you to react to it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: On one hand, it`s clear young people across the political spectrum increasingly favor same-sex marriage. However, young voters have not moved to the left on abortion. In fact, large numbers of them favor at least some modest restrictions that conservatives have supported. How do you speak to millennials on both these issues while Democrats will inevitably charge intolerance and extremism?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: All right, you all are millennials. How important will social issues like marriage equality, like reproductive rights be when it`s time to make a decision at the polls?
JORDAN: I think that`s one of the first issues that millennials look to. That`s how they first start to get engaged in the Democratic process and then they move into more economic and foreign affairs. But I think it`s really important to connect in a way that makes it feel like the parties aren`t pandering specifically to milelians. And not really kind of a cheesy look at this clip on You Tube way, more I understand where you`re coming from and I`m trying to adjust on the issues so I can be more align with how you are feeling.
HARRIS-PERRY: Anybody else want to weigh in on that one?
MIGDOL: I agree with that, especially being students on a campus. We`re not concerned with jobs and working quite yet. But right now, what we are discussing and studying is social issues. That`s what we are discussing and learning about in our classes and that`s really the hot button for us. And I think that they can argue back and forth about jobs and security, but I think that for younger people, it`s definitely the social issues. And that`s, of course, relevant to us.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, I can`t wait. We are going to watch the super bowl together this afternoon and we are getting on the bus. We are heading to New Hampshire. Follow us at Wake the Vote because there`s going to be a lot more happening.
Thank you to my students, Erica Jordan, Cam Midgol, Ryan Wolfe and Camry Wilborn.
And coming up next, later today, Hillary Clinton will be in Flint, Michigan, to attend a meeting with Mayor Karen Weaver. We`ll talk to the mayor next.
Also, Beyonce and Cam Newton and our countdown to Super Bowl 50.
There`s more Nerdland at the top of the hour. Take a listen to a few more predictions.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Super bowl Sunday.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know who`s in it?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I do know who`s in it, yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Super bowl Sunday.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Panthers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: Welcome back. I`m Melissa Harris-Perry. And today, Hillary Clinton will take a break from the campaign trail in New Hampshire to go to Flint, Michigan. Where she will meet with Mayor Karen Weaver. And community members about the city`s lead contaminated water. Now, people in Flint are still reliant on bottled water for daily needs, and inmates at a local prison have had no chose but to use the poisoned water until last week. Yesterday, we spoke with Flint resident Melissa Mays about the heartbreaking, infuriating real-life consequences of this crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MELISSA MAYS, FLINT RESIDENT: My 12-year-old can`t sleep at night because his bones hurt so bad. My 11-year-old, his white blood cell count is four. He`s so anemic, he looks exhausted all the time. He gets sick anytime he goes anywhere. My kids want to play sports and I`m too scared to let them because their bones are brittle. Unless you have a child under six, they give you one case of water. We go through that a day, at least that. We wash our vegetables and meats in bottled water. Everything we can possibly do, wash our face, brush our teeth, everything in the bottled water. And so the one case isn`t enough. So, we just continue to buy it at the store, and my newest water bill came a couple days ago and it`s $1,064. We`re left with no options when want we need to home filtration and pipes replaced and we`re getting anything about that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: In recent weeks, Hillary Clinton has made Flint a focal point of her platform, putting the crisis in the campaign spotlight as an example of inequality and government failure.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We`ve had a city in the United States of America where the population, which is poor in many ways and majority African-American, has been drinking and bathing in lead- contaminated water. And the governor of that state acted as though he didn`t really care. I`ll tell you what. If the kids in a rich suburb of Detroit had been drinking contaminated water and being bathed in it, there would have been actions.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: Clinton`s opponent Bernie Sanders has also criticized the response to Flint`s water crisis, calling for Governor Rick Snyder to resign. And last week, Clinton pushed for a democratic presidential debate in Flint, which is now scheduled to take place in March. Mayor Weaver endorsed Clinton last month, praising her response to the crisis.
And joining me now is Flint`s Mayor, Dr. Karen Weaver. So nice to have you, Mayor Weaver.
MAYOR KAREN WEAVER (D), FLINT, MICHIGAN: Thank you for having me.
HARRIS-PERRY: So yesterday, when I had Flint resident and mom Melissa Mays on, we asked her beforehand whether or not there was anyone in government who she now trusts after everything that has happened. And her response to us was that you are the only person who she now trusts. So, tell me why. What steps have you been trying to take to bring some relief to the people of Flint despite the inaction of others at other levels?
WEAVER: Well, you know, one of the things that I have always let people know when I got into office was, the question I was asked was, what could I do? Because at that point, I didn`t have local control. I didn`t have power. But one of the things I always pledged to people was, I would speak up and speak out on behalf of the issues that I knew our community was facing. And nothing was going to stop me from doing that. And that`s what I`ve continued to do.
HARRIS-PERRY: So one of the things, I know you`re working on right now is actually a private/public partnership for trying to fund a full replacement of the piping in the city. Talk to me about what that looks like.
WEAVER: That`s exactly right, because you know, one of the things we know is lancing also had some issues with lead in their pipes. It didn`t get to the extent that we have it here in Flint. They were able to do something before it got to this level. But we have been talking with them, and we`re looking at what we can do, because one of the things we know we cannot do is wait on the state to come in and fix this problem. We have been waiting for almost two years. And so, we want to do what they did in lancing because we know it doesn`t require the digging, it doesn`t take as long and it doesn`t cost as much. And time is of the essence, and we need to move quickly.
HARRIS-PERRY: There`s obviously sort of multiple layers of Government Issue here going on. You know, one of the things that we have been talking --
HARRIS-PERRY: -- about is the way in which this is in part a set of choices that were made by an emergency manager because there wasn`t local control. That emergency manager was reporting to at the level of the state, but then the EPA is also implicated here. So, talk to me, when you`re kind of looking at kind of the whole broad sweep here of the federal, the state, what are the different levels that you need response from for the local people of Flint?
WEAVER: You know, what I need response on the level of the state and federal. Because we know that there was a breakdown, there was a failure on all levels. And so at this point, and that was why I wanted this declared an emergency. And really, I wanted Flint declared a disaster area because we know this is bigger than the state financially. We know we need some federal assistance as well. But I don`t want to take the focus off over the state. The state has a huge responsibility in this because we had been under emergency manager. And so we know there`s money there, and that`s what we`re requesting. That`s what we should be the priority, and that`s what the residents are demanding, money, financial assistance from the state. But we also know we need it at a federal level because of the cost of the infrastructure and also the human cost, which is going to be more than the infrastructure, I would imagine.
HARRIS-PERRY: So, I want to talk about the human cost for a second. Because obviously, everyone in Flint is at risk, but there are some communities that are particularly vulnerable. We started by talking a little bit about those who are in prison, who were still drinking the water, including even pregnant prisoners who were still drinking the water up to a week ago. I also highlighted on the show last week some of the challenges around Spanish-speaking communities. Mr. Sanders, Bernie Sanders, put out a statement just yesterday saying that the federal government must also halt all immigration raids immediately because these inhumane raids are having a chilling effect across the country, especially in Flint, preventing some of the most vulnerable people from stepping outside their homes, let alone seeking clean water for their families. Have you seen this for yourself?
WEAVER: And you know what. That`s what I`ve heard. I haven`t seen it firsthand because I have been out in the streets, and you know, helping to do the delivery. But one of the things we want people to know is they are not supposed to be doing that. You are not supposed to or required to show I.D. If you come to one of the places where we`re dispensing the water or if we`re coming to your home, that should not be a requirement. If that happens, I would really like them to call the 211 number and report that to us. Because that should not be happening.
This is not the purpose of this. But you know what. That`s one of the other reasons we believe that, you know, we appreciate the National Guard coming in. We appreciate the help and the support that we`ve gotten, but it`s time for us to be able to help take care of ourselves and be part of this healing process. And instead of that money going to them, we would like to use our own people, our own local people, to help with this water dispensing.
HARRIS-PERRY: Thank you, to Mayor Karen Weaver in Flint, Michigan, you have been absolutely heroic in this process. We have -- this is tough. And listening to Melissa Mays yesterday really talk about the human cost of this, thank you for the work that you continue to do.
WEAVER: Thank you so much.
HARRIS-PERRY: Before we go to break, a quick programming note. You can see Senator Hillary Clinton and Mr. Donald Trump on "Meet the Press" at 2:00 p.m. Eastern today, right here on MSNBC.
Up next, Beyonce broke the entire world yesterday with her new music video formation. You do not want to miss the Nerdland conversation about it.
HARRIS-PERRY: So, there we were -- we were putting together our annual MHP show, Super Bowl segment. And because you know how we do it here in Nerdland, it gets complicated because it`s always football`s biggest day is about so much more than football. This year, it`s all about unapologetic blackness and the heightened scrutiny of a black body and vulnerability the police violence and displacement of marginalized people, and we`re going to talk about all of that late, but later. Because in the middle of our planning, Beyonce broke the internet again. Out of nowhere.
I mean, in just under five minutes, she somehow managed to use her black girl magic to read our minds and tackle all those complicated questions of race and justice in one Beyonce video to rule them all. And you all, where do I even begin? First, I can`t help but to notice the timing, the surprise drop of her new video formation came the day before television`s biggest audience gathered to celebrate our favorite national pastime. And as we watch the entertaining spectacle unfold today in the stadium in Santa Clara, Beyonce is asking us to recall the shameful spectacle that unfolded in a stadium in New Orleans more than a decade ago. Because there she is on top of a New Orleans and OPD New Orleans police car that is sinking slowly beneath the rising waters and that image paired in the next moment with a young African-American boy in a hoodie dancing defiantly before a row of armed police threading the needle between the Black Lives Matter movement and the police violence against black bodies.
And its early roots in a movement that arose when systemic violence against black bodies was unveiled when the levees broke during Hurricane Katrina. I mean, B. She`s not only showing us images that evoke New Orleans suffering. Formation also reveals and revels in New Orleans joy. The video shows us the city`s undeniable blackness, its authentic, unvarnished images of people that both honor their individual humanity while celebrating the unique culture of New Orleans that binds them together. There`s Beyonce performing her own heritage, as she says that creole with that negro in a way that both affirms a corseted color conscious skin that must be shaded from the sun model of respectability even as she demolishes that respectability bouncing and twerking in the broad daylight hard alongside the squad of brown girl dancers flinging frost from the kinkiest and of the hair texture spectrum.
Hair that by the way, she`ll style however she damn well pleases on her own child when she sings I like my baby hair with baby hair and afros. With a co-sign from blue ivy who rocks said style in cameo appearance. This is Beyonce making an artistic statement that is boldly, unapologetically black. She`s giving us black bodies and a black politics that will not be silenced or shames but instead command space for the one thing the video tells us they are most definitely here to do. As Beyonce says in the refrain, I slay.
Joining me now, Brittney Cooper, assistant professor at Rutgers University and contributor at Salon.com. Michael Arceneaux, columnist at Complex Magazine. Dave Zirin, sports editor for The Nation magazine and host of the Edge of Sports podcast. And Adam Howard, reporter for MSNBC.com. Where do we begin? So what is the formation?
BRITTNEY COOPER, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY: I begin with my hot sauce.
COOPER: Hot sauce and my bag swag. Listen, there`s just so much wonderful stuff that we can say about this, but I think one of my most favorite moments happens about the 3:45 mark.
HARRIS-PERRY: About the 3:45 mark. Have you watched it?
COOPER: I was watching this, right. When the young man is dancing in front of that police line.
HARRIS-PERRY: Right, and that`s clearly the Baltimore picture come to life.
COOPER: That`s right, and then immediately, it shoots to a clip of black women in formation. And so I love that she is saying the police are getting in formation, but it`s also black women who are in formation, running this movement, telling it how it is going to move, choreographic freedom. She literally shows us a young black boy, choreographing freedom and then black women falling into line and figuring out how to create a spine for the movement that moves and shifts and changes in the way that it needs.
HARRIS-PERRY: And the slaying, right?
COOPER: That`s right.
HARRIS-PERRY: It`s also the language of the slaying. Because for me, part of it is, when we think about the slaying of the young black male body felled by bullets. But when this boy slays the police. When they have to put their hands up, right, he`s slaying them with his talent. Right? It`s a different. And she`s slaying everybody with all of her everything.
MICHAEL ARCENEAUX, COLUMNIST, COMPLEX MAGAZINE: Can I just say, I wanted to stand Melissa throughout the whole intro.
I`m a gay black man from Houston with the last name Arceneaux. Like everything that was in that video speaks to me.
ARCENEAUX: And Beyonce has always actually been really, really black. Everything that`s continued to build like from B-Day became Beyonce and Beyonce came -- she`s always included gay black people. She`s always been very pro black women. She`s always been very pro-Black. And what I really, really, really love about her is that the biggest pop star in the world is unapologetically country as hell, and owns it because so often, even between us, that strain of blackness is not celebrated. It`s looked down upon.
HARRIS-PERRY: Because a lot of those images, so, there`s the images that are shot, that are -- where be herself is in them, but many of those images are actually coming out of a documentary, a bounce documentary, and some of the sound that you hear is actually big Frida.
ARCENEAUX: That just means so much. Like she helped me become comfortable with even my feminine ways with the B-Day album. Like she wants you to celebrate who you are. Like I literally want to run around and just like, thank you, mother. She makes me so happy.
DAVID ZIRIN, SPORTS EDITOR, THE NATION MAGAZINE: I`m never going to look at a couple eating at red lobster the same way.
ZIRIN: I`m always going to --
HARRIS-PERRY: I did maybe invite my husband to red lobster once.
ZIRIN: Oh, Mr. Perry.
But I have to say, like, watching it, it took me -- there are more indelible images in this video than any movie I can remember.
ZIRIN: I mean, it`s a five-minute video. The artistic accomplishment of this is remarkable. If it wasn`t for a blog called New Southern Negress and a writer name Zandria, I wouldn`t have understood half of it. And frankly, that`s part of the beauty of it, because it`s not for me to understand. It is an unapologetic statement not just of blackness, but southern blackness. And to have it happen the day before the Super Bowl, it`s like Beyonce is the Cam Newton of popular culture, or maybe Cam Newton is the Beyonce of football.
HARRIS-PERRY: And literally, she did the socks and sandals. She had the actual socks and sandals. How could that have happened? Like the timing, how is that even possible that that could have happen?
ZIRIN: And a real dialogue that happened with a friend of mine that said, when have we seen something so unapologetically southern and black in recent history. And my friend said, how about a week ago when Cam Newton said our team is like collard greens.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well --
ZIRIN: I agree. So the ties are really tight. And not just because both Cam Newton and Beyonce what they have in common is a level of just physical attractiveness that makes you feel like they`re not only breaking molds, they are creating new molds.
HARRIS-PERRY: I don`t even know how you get that in way for us.
ADAM HOWARD, MSNBC.COM REPORTER: This is about to be #SuperBowlsoblack I think. No, I mean, I`m such a Beyonce fan, I can`t always be exactly rational when I think of --
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. I do. I worry about that. Like my students were pushing back on me a little bit because I do stand awfully hard for her.
HARRIS-PERRY: And so, they were like, but wait a minute, maybe actually the inscrutability of it is problematic around the kind of whether or not it actually operates as an intervention in the Black Lives Matter movement.
HOWARD: Yes. I mean, even if I`m predisposed to love everything she does, I don`t think anyone can deny the power of this video. I think of it as an act of righteous defiance. It`s a provocation poised on the eve of the Super Bowl. It`s something she didn`t have to do. She`s at the pinnacle of her career. She could just lay back and crank out hits and everybody would love it. But she chose to do this. And I think it`s part of a narrative she`s been telling over several albums. If you follow her career, it`s an evolution of --
HARRIS-PERRY: We`ll going to have a break. I promise we`ll have more when we come back from break -- come back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BEYONCE KNOWLES, MUSICIAN: I remember growing up, watching the Super Bowl with my family, and it`s an event that families come together and watch. I knew I had to make the best of the moment, and I wanted it to be something iconic and something that people would never forget.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: That was Beyonce in a new and rare interview with CBS talking about her extraordinary halftime performance at the 2013 Super Bowl. And judging by the video she just dropped for formation, you bet her Super Bowl appearance tonight will probably be another game changer. So, you know, for me, again, part of what I loved about the visuals here is the way that she looks at southern black culture with such love. And it reminds me of "No Angel" and the way she does the Houston Third Ward, and it could through certain eyes feel exploited, but when she`s looking at it, it feels very loving, but she did just do a kind of problematic kind of anthropological gaze in the Coldplay piece. So, break that down dear.
COOPER: That`s right. So, look, I think it`s problematic, and I very much viewed it as appropriation. So, the challenge here though is that she`s such an important artist that I thought, man, we`re going to have to break up, and now I`m like, let me get you these cheddar bay biscuits. Because --
HARRIS-PERRY: That`s right.
COOPER: You know, so but look, the other thing that I want to say here, though, is one, she really challenges the king narrative very subtly. She said he`s more than a dreamer. That`s so important, right? And it`s also a real clap back at anybody that would sort of read her as white or leaning towards whiteness to extract that king narrative. And the last thing I want to also shout out Professor Zandria Robinson`s piece because the thing she says in this piece is, in the end when Beyonce is sinking down into that water and I thought, why would she drown? How is that triumphant? And she said, she uses her body and her black woman labor to finally sink the car and submerge it. And I think that that is such a tribute to the labor of black women in this movement, that they`re saying we`re not going to let the state continue to take us out, even if we have to put our bodies on the line.
HARRIS-PERRY: Can we talk about how long and how uncomfortable it is? How long she holds the double middle finger, right? Because there`s a moment in flawless where she gives us a quick middle finger, right? But she just is like, for a really long -- like patriarchy, you take all of that.
ARCENEAUX: No one is as gracious and commanding at the same time with offering an f-you as Beyonce. And even in the song, she gets at Black people who participate in anti-blackness with respect to her child and her son, because a lot of that was in house.
HARRIS-PERRY: Uh-hm. Almost all of it was.
ARCENEAUX: And she got them together. Like she just -- I literally just want to just like fallout and say, thank you, mother. I love her so much.
HARRIS-PERRY: But it feels to me like part of what that is, part of what that is, it is the anti-respectability politics. Right? So, it is the sinking of the car, and the getting at folks on her child`s hair. But also getting at a whole movement that is saying, you know, she`s signaling a Black Lives Matter movement that is doing something different than a civil rights movement that is saying, we`re just not doing -- also, did anybody notice she`s having sandwiches again, which obviously she ate. Like, thank you, Beyonce.
HOWARD: Only she can start conversations like this right now. There`s no other pop artist who can --
HARRIS-PERRY: Literally what she says.
HOWARD: But she`s right.
HARRIS-PERRY: The line is actually like you know you`re that be where anybody, when you`re starting all the conversations.
HOWARD: Yes. Sorry to interrupt. But she does a genius thing by not oversaturating the markets. So, when she drops a single, everyone stops in their tracks and must bow down.
HARRIS-PERRY: That`s right.
ARCENEAUX: I wanted to say, I don`t like the comparison like, oh, you like this, but you didn`t like Kendrick Lamar`s song. Kendrick Lamar`s song, while it got people talking, but not necessarily for a good reason because he was essentially blaming black people for being victims of racism that is beyond their control. Like black on black crime, that is a very stupid reductive way of looking at things. We need to move beyond that. That video is a celebration of every facet of blackness and a direct f-you to much of the white supremacy and institutionalized racism that causes all of that.
HARRIS-PERRY: Maybe you get the last word on Beyonce.
ARCENEAUX: I just wanted to say, without queer black women, there is no Black Lives Matter movement, and without the courage of black mothers like Jordan Davis, his mother, Trayvon Martin`s mother, there is no Black Lives Matter moment. What Beyonce did was in a pop-cultural sense center queer black women, black mothers as the reason why we have this new civil rights movement. And that`s not done nearly enough in our popular culture or in our media.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, amen. Thank you to Brittney Cooper and Michael Arceneaux. And Michael, anytime you want to come back and just say Beyonce is better than Kendrick Lamar, you can come.
All right. David and Adam are sticking around, and up next, Super Bowl Sunday, the whole country will be watching and dabbing. Superman impersonating Cam Newton. We have a lot to talk about. As we go to break, some more predictions about tonight`s big game.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sunday.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Patriots.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They`re not in.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: At least you know who`s playing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- and the Broncos.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You will be watching?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have no idea. I hope so.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: It`s the most watched event of the year. Not New Hampshire, not the presidential election. Not even Beyonce swooping down to earth and slaying with unapologetic southern girl blackness. No, this is about football. Super Bowl Sunday is finally here. With about six hours left until kickoff, all eyes are on Northern California, as the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos meet for the most hyped, flashiest spectacle in sports. Now, the only thing representing my beloved New Orleans at this year`s Super Bowl isn`t the Saints, but Beyonce`s formation, and that is just going to have to be good enough for me.
But you know team MHP isn`t just watching the halftime show. We have our eyes on the quarterback of the moment. Carolina Panther Cam Newton. The end zone dabbing Superman channeling star quarterback who runs the 40-yard dash in 4.59 seconds and who has dominated defenses, throwing a career high 35 touchdown passes and a career low 10 interceptions for a team that lost just once. Yet, the newly minted MVP has launched a firestorm of criticism along his road to the Lombardi. The reason? Cam likes to dance. When celebrating a touchdown, a dance that just gnaws at some folks in game, like the Titans coach who said, it`s a little rubbing it in your face. There`s a little code of ethics in the NFL. It`s not a good move.
ZIRIN: NFL is so ethical.
HARRIS-PERRY: Fans pile on Newton, too, like the unsettled onlooker who penned an open letter to Newton, because his celebratory moves scandalized her and her nine-year-old daughter, complaining about, quote, "the chest puffs, the pelvic thrusts, the arrogant struts, and the in your face taunting." Tack on angry editorials about Newton being an unwed father irked headlines about his fashion sense and shoe game, along with these choice words by former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RODNEY HARRISON, FORMER PATRIOTS SAFETY: If I was playing against Cam Newton, I would try to take him out. I would try to take him out.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you mean?
HARRISON: I would try to hurt him. I would go right at his knees.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. Yes. That`s real ethical. And then on Thursday, just when we thought there was nothing left to criticize about a man who has done nothing but win and act joyful about it, he was asked this question.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why are you wearing socks with sandals?
CAM NEWTON, PANTHERS QUARTERBACK: Why are you wearing jeans -- with shoes?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS-PERRY: Seriously. Sandals and socks?
Joining my panel now is Shana Renee Stephenson, founder and editor-in-chief of All Sports Everything. Also joining me from Minneapolis, Minnesota, is Ben Leber, former NFL linebacker and sports radio host on KFAN. So, may I ask, is that like, are socks and sandals like a thing that is somehow bad for the NFL? Like I`m sorry, this just really feels -- this feels like an odd pile-on for a guy who is having this level of accomplishment.
BEN LEBER, FORMER NFL LINEBACKER: Well, look, when somebody wears Versace pants, right? You want to think that he`s got the greatest fashion sense, whether you like the pants or not listen, nobody wears socks with sandals. Nobody does.
HARRIS-PERRY: Everybody wears socks with sandals.
LEBER: No, no. Your dad wears socks with sandals on the beach. And you criticize him for it. Cam Newton probably shouldn`t wear socks with sandals, but the thing that everybody loves about Cam Newton is he does it his own way. So, there`s no way you can totally criticize him.
HARRIS-PERRY: OK. So, for me, I want to come out, for me, I guess the thing I`m finding most difficult about this is the idea that there is some ethical code of behavior in a game where the rule -- like the actual rules are hit the other guys. I mean, so beyond everything else that is going on in the NFL, right, just even the basic rules of the game, and this kid is dancing when he wins.
SHANA RENEE STEPHENSON, FOUNDER AND EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, ALL SPORTS EVERYTHING: Right. I mean, that`s the sheer irony of this whole thing. And I think that what it boils down to you is that Cam Newton is a black quarterback, as he stated last week, and he is excelling at the game, winning at the game, in a position where black quarterbacks haven`t necessarily been accepted in a very long time. And he`s doing it his own way. He`s a dual threat. And that in essence is a threat to those who aren`t necessarily a fan of his.
HARRIS-PERRY: I`m literally shocked. Actually shocked that I`m doing this segment. How could it possibly be true in 2016, Adam, that we`re doing a segment about people can`t get their heads around a black quarterback. You know, I don`t wanted to be the Obama like, we have a black president for eight years thing --
HARRIS-PERRY: But for real, are we seriously having emotions on a black quarterback?
HOWARD: Yes. I think so. Because I think --
HARRIS-PERRY: How could we have emotions about a black quarterback?
HOWARD: Well, I`m not having emotions --
HARRIS-PERRY: I mean, as a country.
HOWARD: There`s a certain segment of this population that thinks that black athletes should be seen and not heard. And we have dress codes to keep them from expressing themselves. We have rules that keep them from enjoying themselves in the end zone. And there`s something that is very visceral to certain people when a black athletes says, yes, I am the greatest and I am amazing. And try and stop me. We saw it happen with Muhammad Ali. We saw it with LeBron James when he had the audacity to say, you know what I want to play for a team that might be able to win. And it`s happening now with Cam Newton who by any measure actually deserves to be arrogant.
HOWARD: I mean, he`s been the best player in the NFL this year. So, he`s earned it.
ZIRIN: It`s because he`s unapologetically black, and he is playing the position of quarterback in a way that is very transgressive because there are these unwritten rules if you`re going to be quarterback, you have to be like Rodney Harrison`s quarterback Tom Brady and look constipated on the field. Look, like, I am only -- I have to go to the bathroom and I hate my teammates and I`m going to yell at you on camera. And somehow, that`s not showing off, that is not showing people up, that`s not arrogance, but Cam Newton actually looking happy to be there is arrogance.
HARRIS-PERRY: OK, but let`s back up. Let`s back up to the first time that I became really aware of professional football was 30 years ago, and it was the Super Bowl shuffle. It was the Chicago Bears. It was a whole team of like wonderful arrogant guys, led by the most arrogant quarterback of all time, right? Jim McMahon, who actually mooned the, you know, but we loved him for it. We embraced him for it. Ben, I mean, that was 30 years ago that we saw McMahon doing that. And in fact, you know, we all wore the headbands and like, that was the thing.
LEBER: Yes, it was. And the thing I think that he gets a lot of criticism for is because he not only appeals to the urban but also the suburban. And this is a black issue whether people want to admit it or not. You know, he`s only the sixth quarterback to ever start a Super Bowl being African- Americans. So, yes, there is that story line, but he pulls it off so perfectly. He`s perfectly flawed, I think in his leadership abilities. He does a great job with community stuff. The teammates love him. So, you have that aspect where he`s respected by the guys in the locker room. Does he celebrate too much?
Yes, I think he does. I think he does pushed the envelope on being disrespectful at times. But he`s so polarizing that he dresses nicely, he`s one of the sharpest dressed guys in the NFL. So, black or white, young and old, you do love him because he is entertaining. And this is an entertaining business. He`s just playing quarterback in a whole new way that is new age and for some it`s hard to handle.
HARRIS-PERRY: Yes. We`re going to go to break, but I don`t know if he`s celebrating too much. I`m just going to give it a little Beyonce. And I think he`s twirling on them haters. We`re going to break. We`re coming back on all of this.
HARRIS-PERRY: So, we`re back, and we`re continuing to talk about the complications around race and the Super Bowl and also just this idea about sort of this notion that there`s some sort of code of ethics.
And David, I wanted to come to you on this, in part because obviously, particularly as we`re thinking about head injuries and we`re thinking about sort of how the league treats its players, the furor around Cam dancing feels to me awfully misplaced.
ZIRIN: Yes. I mean, code of ethics. There`s a commissioner in charge of the National Football League who took the ALS ice bucket challenge while his league formally denies that there`s any connection between head injuries and ALS. This commissioner stood up, Roger Goodell, in front of a whole group of reporters. And they said, what do you think about football being dangerous? And his response was, well, it`s also a dangerous to sit on the couch. I mean, this is tobacco company level stuff. Remember, the tobacco people said, well, you could also die from eating too much applesauce.
ZIRIN: I mean, that`s where Roger Goodell is, he`s reached peak tobacco when it comes to his comments.
ZIRIN: And so, to call Cam Newton ethical is just -- it really does boggle my mind. And with Cam Newton, like Beyonce has done, is he has opened up political space to have wider discussions in the culture.
ZIRIN: I was listening to the show Mike and Mike on ESPN, which is if all due respect kind of a jackass show, and on it was this guy Domonique Foxworth, brilliant guy. And he said, Cam Newton reminds me of WEB Dubois, and the negation of double consciousness. This idea that you have to be one person in front of black people and another person in front of white people. And I`m like, oh my God, they just said WEB Dubois on Mike and Mike --
ZIRIN: And that`s what Cam Newton brings to the table, a cultural power to educate.
HOWARD: And one of the coolest things about him is when he gives those footballs away to little kids after he scores a touchdown, most of those little kids are white.
HOWARD: And they have no knowledge of Warren Moon and how the NFL forced him to play in Canada for years. He won every championship in the world for them to even allow him to start. And they`re going to grow up in a world where Cam Newton is commonplace. And nothing about his race is going to necessarily permeate their consciousness. And I think that alone is a revolutionary thing.
STEPHENSON: Well, Warren Moon was Cam`s mentor and one of the pieces of advice that he gave him was be yourself. Like that`s one of the regrets that he had when he was a player, that he felt that he really couldn`t be himself. And so, what we see is Cam heeding that advice and doing it to the fullest power.
HARRIS-PERRY: And I wonder if that also, Ben, let me go to you on this. I wonder if that also releases something in him as a player. I mean, literally, we know from research that sort of having to hide some portion of yourself, having to conceal, having to have the double consciousness can actually affect performance on things like tests or athletic performance.
LEBER: It really can. You know, you look back in his young NFL career, and he wasn`t a great leader. He had poor body language when things got tough. And when his teammates need him the most, you know, there you see him with the towel on his head, his head down, and not being a leader. And I think, you know, he took a lot of that advice and said here`s my epiphany. I need to start having fun, I need to be myself. Because when you`re yourself, you`re relaxed. And as football players, we tell our players all the time, you play the best when you`re prepared and you`re relaxed and not thinking.
Whether it`s Xs and Os or this read or that read, but it comes to your personality as well. If you can be yourself, then your leadership comes out of you naturally. And I think that`s what`s happening. He is having fun, and they talk about it`s the most fun team to watch, because it permeates through the locker room. Defensive guys are feeding off it, offensive guys. And it has created a team culture, a winning culture that everybody is going to be going after if they win the Super Bowl today.
HARRIS-PERRY: Well, I will say, one of my favorite be yourself just kind of permeate your leadership things is actually going to happen in a Super Bowl commercial today. It`s a Pantene commercial. And it`s going to be -- you`re going to see these guys doing the hair of their daughters. And I just going to do one more shout-out for the university where I work, Wake Forest University. And actually this commercial -- this Pantene commercial is based on research done by one of my colleagues at Wake Forest University about father/daughter bonding. And so in a league that has also had some real issues and challenges around gender, it will be a nice moment to see these men acting as fathers in this role. It will be a nice one.
But thank you to Ben Leber in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
LEBER: Thank you.
HARRIS-PERRY: Also thank you to my guests here in New York, Adam Howard, Shana Renee Stephenson. And Dave is going to stick around a little bit longer because up next, how Super Bowl also became the story of gentrification.
HARRIS-PERRY: We now bring you a tale of three cities. The first one, Santa Clara, California where later today, the Panthers and the Broncos will take the field in nearby stadium for a football`s greatest game. And there`s San Francisco, less than 50 miles north, the host of the Super Bowl`s pregame festivities. And within that city is a city some of you have never heard of because it`s only been around for about a week. Super Bowl City. Like a pop up Disneyland for a football heads directed at a foot -- about a foot of market straight, a quote, "A fan village dishing out its special blend of fireworks, concerts, heightened police presence and an $8 bud light."
It`s a place that many of the actual residents of San Francisco are navigating with caution or avoiding all together. A scene that hip hop journalists Dave Dee (ph) likened to the Hunger Games. Telling my guest Dave Zirin in an interview that quote, "You have an elite drinking champagne and eating caviar standing right alongside people who have been smashed on economically and socially who are sitting there trying to make sense out of what just hit them."
Because San Francisco has been hit hard. Under that majestic veneer of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Victorian architecture reputation for quirkiness and liberal politics, San Francisco was very much the epicenter of troubling social issues of city where the homeless population is getting sicker and older facing displacement by gentrification. A city that was ranked the second highest for income inequality in the nation and where some residents are getting booted out of their homes by the influx of skyrocketing rents, luxury condos, tech industry arrivals and the rich and force San Francisco the Super Bowl tale comes with no trophy. Local taxpayers are footing a $5 million bill in Super Bowl cost. While Santa Clara where the actual game is being played is not paying a dime.
Joining me now is Jane Kim, elected member of the San Francisco board of supervisors who has introduced legislation to renegotiate the city`s agreement to host the NFL. So, nice to have you this morning, Jane.
JANE KIM, MEMBER, SAN FRANCISCO BOARD OF SUPERVISORS: Good morning.
HARRIS-PERRY: So, we know that your city loves football, but share with us why the Super Bowl has touched a nerve for San Francisco residents.
KIM: First I should say that this isn`t about whether we welcome the Super Bowl or not. The debate around the Super Bowl is really about a larger systematic issue which is the growing economic divide and the question of whose city is this for. This is no longer a divide between the rich and the poor. This is a divide between the ultra-wealthy and everybody else. The NFL has said to San Franciscan, well, what`s $5 million? Well, $5 million may not be a lot to one of the wealthiest companies in the world. They raked in $12.4 billion last year and its highest paid executive made $44 billion in 2012.
In fact, the NFL will make $5 million in one 30 second commercial this afternoon. But $5 million is a lot to a San Francisco family that is homeless and living in its car and $5 million is a lot to our middle class household who make good money but are still struggling to live in San Francisco. San Francisco has an eviction crisis and affordability crisis. A homelessness crisis. So, this is really a policy debate about how best been down, public dollars that everyone contributes to. Is it to pay and subsidize for party for the wealthy or she will use it to address this really critical issues.
HARRIS-PERRY: It feels to me, and I just want to go to David for just a second. David it feels me, like what Jane has just lay out there are precisely the kinds of things that I haven`t even heard about in the context of Olympics for example.
ZIRIN: Yes. It`s very similar the World Cup and Olympics. It`s using sports as a method to push neoliberalism and gentrification into a city and using our love of sports as a kind of neo-liberal Trojan horse to push it through. I mean, you realize at this game today in Santa Clara, they are going to be selling sausages with real gold flakes on top of them.
ZIRIN: So you can eat gold on top of your sausage while you have as many as 10,000 people homeless living in shelters and tent cities in San Francisco. I mean, you couldn`t make this up. I mean, Hunger Games looks more like a cautionary tale when you think about this. I mean, we are reaching peak Marie Antoinette territory with what`s happening here and there needs to be a response. The one statistics I want people to live with is 61 percent of the homeless in San Francisco were working at the time when they lost their homes.
HARRIS-PERRY: So, Jane, let me come to you on that. Because the critique that I have heard pushed back on this is, well, the folks who are angry about the Super Bowl also are people unwilling to change the zoning of San Francisco, unwilling to let San Francisco build up and to create a more New York-looking skyline that would allow rents to come down. What do you say to that?
KIM: So, you know, this actually comes down to another issue which is that I really reject the notion that cities shouldn`t negotiate aggressively for its residents.
KIM: So, I hear the same argument from our market rate housing developers that we shouldn`t ask for more, that if we asked for more, they won`t build in our city, that they won`t come to San Francisco. The same as the NFL and the Super Bowl host committee. But last year I was able to negotiate two major housing deals where we won 40 percent affordable middle income housing after developers said that even 10 or 15 percent would prevent them from building at all. This is really about making sure that we are negotiating and fighting for our residents to make sure that this is a city that includes everybody.
HARRIS-PERRY: Jane, let me ask one last question here. Mayor Ed Lee said that the homeless are going to have to leave the street for the Super Bowl. Is that right?
KIM: The mayor did say that earlier this summer. And, you know, I should add to the statistic that was just mentioned, a third of our homeless count are children between the ages of five and 17. This is a moral and ethical issue not just for San Francisco, but cities across the nation. And one last thing that I will say is that the NFL has said that San Francisco will make millions of dollars from these parties and I think that remains to be seen. But what we do know for sure is that the NFL is going to make tens of millions of dollars from these parties and they`re not going to pay for any of it.
HARRIS-PERRY: I want to say thank you to Jane Kim in San Francisco, it`s tough, right? For those of us who is do in fact, love sports but we do have to keep our eyes on the ways in which there are these big ethical issues that are right at the heart of it. Thank you so much for joining us today.
KIM: Thank you.
HARRIS-PERRY: And right here in New York, a big thank you to our good friend Dave Zirin.
ZIRIN: Thank you.
HARRIS-PERRY: To have Dave Zirin on a Super Bowl Sunday.
ZIRIN: You want a Super Bowl fans bag (ph)?
HARRIS-PERRY: I do want a Super Bowl fans bag.
ZIRIN: All right. Real quick. This is Super Bowl 50. Cam Newton is responsible for 50 touchdowns this year, it`s in the bay area where they`re going to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding or the Black Panther Party. Cam Newtown`s team is the Black Panther. His name is Cam Newton, he was born in 1989, the year that Huey P. Newton was killed.
HARRIS-PERRY: Dave Zirin, only Dave Zirin doing all the 50s.
That is our show for today. Thanks to you at home for watching. Happy Super Bowl Sunday in only the way the Nerdland can bring to you. And you can see who might wake the vote. Students are rooting for because Wake Forrest University is in North Carolina. I`m going to see you next Saturday at 10:00 a.m. Eastern. Let`s see those wake the vote students! Remember that you can see Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump on "Meet the Press."
Coming up, two days for the New Hampshire primaries. It`s going to continue, next.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END