Trump Legal Team on PR offensive. TRANSCRIPT: 8/10/2018, The Beat w. Ari Melber.

Guests: Anna Schecter; Leah Wright Rigueur; Howell Raines; Richard Blumenthal, DeRay McKesson,Patrisse Cullors, Tabatha Coffey, Howell Raines

Show: THE BEAT WITH ARI MELBER Date: August 10, 2018 Guest: Anna Schecter; Leah Wright Rigueur; Howell Raines; Richard Blumenthal, DeRay McKesson, Patrisse Cullors, Tabatha Coffey, Howell Raines

ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: -- you are a master of it on Sundays, but I do wonder if someone knew if they say were those facts from that long ago why go work for that person in government.

CHUCK TODD, MSNBC HOST: She spends couple hundred pages trying to explain that.

MELBER: It would take a couple hundred pages, I say that with no disrespect.

TODD: No. And I`m just telling you, you are asking and she is self-aware at criticisms like that.

MELBER: Well, I think it`s going to be what everyone thinks so much of what`s happening right now.

TODD: Right.

MELBER: I think it is going to be fascinating to see that discussion. And we will be watching it on "MEET THE PRESS" on Sundays, sir.

TODD: Alright, Ari. You got it.

MELBER: Thank you, Chuck.

Robert Mueller right dialing up pressure on witnesses holding one in contempt which sets up an important court battle appealing on Mueller subpoena that is happening right now. And tonight, we are also seeing some of the reaction from Donald Trump`s legal team to this pressure.

Now the technical term for what is happening, what is coming from the Trump lawyers is a meltdown. They are taking their case public but not through in a round of media interviews. Instead, it is a round of Trump lawyers interviewing themselves in the media and moonlighting as guest hosts on none other than Sean Hannity`s radio show. Seriously.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAY SEKULOW, TRUMP`S ATTORNEY: Hey, welcome to the show in "Hannity Show," Jay Sekulow and mayor Rudy Giuliani. How about that Giuliani and Sekulow?

RUDY GIULIANI, PRESIDENT TRUMP`S LAWYER: Isn`t that nice.

SEKULOW: I`m Jay Sekulow, chief counsel to the American Center for law and justice and one of the counsel to the President. And Rudy Giuliani, of course, America`s mayor, former U.S. attorney department of justice official. And for purposes of right now my colleague and co-counsel in a case involving a Russia inquiry that we are engage in. You may have read something about it. We are also going to be taking your calls.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: We are providing the criminal defense for the sitting President, but also taking your calls.

If this looks and sounds bizarre to you as a human being living in 2018 that`s because it is bizarre, legally and historically, is also unprecedented in the entire American archives of criminal defense work for a sitting President.

Now critics of Trump may like this, and we are about to show you more of what they said, critics of Trump may like it for the same reason that they want him to keep tweeting. More talking and freelancing can provide more evidence for Mueller and incriminating information in plain sight on the public record. In fact, some of the largest recent scoops that have heard the White House involve Trump or his aides and lawyers talking. The only reason we know team Trump lied about their story defending the Trump tower Russia meeting, for example, was because they told so many stories in the media about it.

Now, in today`s outing (ph) the Trump lawyers/guest hosts, I don`t know. They stressed they are not leaking the secret details of their discussions with Mueller. They also criticized James Comey for what they call his leaking. And they used these appearances to try to undercut witnesses and the entire probe.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: I think if I were the attorney general, I would appoint an independent counsel. And I would appoint the independent counsel for two purposes. Purpose number one, to appropriately prosecute the people who violated these laws. Comey clearly leaked a document that he wasn`t supposed to leak.

SEKULOW: If you look at the scope and nature of this inquiry, the way it started, the corruption of the outset.

GIULIANI: It surely looks like an illegitimate investigation. President of the United States said this a long time back that it is a witch hunt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: The other weird part of the bind these lawyers have put themselves in is that instead of taking questions from journalists, if you would, in much shorter not three-hour appearances they are taking questions from Sean Hannity fans. And today, one of those fans was out even farther than Trump`s lawyers wanted to go

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is very clearly, Obama should be charged. The department of justice is being lack in its responsibility right now. They should be looking at investigating and charging Barack Obama with abuse of power.

SEKULOW: What do you think, Rudy?

GIULIANI: I don`t want to jump that for yet.

SEKULOW: I don`t think you could --.

GIULIANI: I would agree with you. It is crying out for an investigation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: When the lawyers finished their time with the live callers, they also stressed how serious their work is and people can evaluate how serious a job is if you can take out three hours from it to fill in for Sean Hannity when he has time off.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEKULOW: That is the highest honor that any lawyer could have representing the President and defending the constitution. And that`s why we have to go through a deliberative process.

GIULIANI: Yes. We can`t just shoot from the hip. We have to be able to have thought it out. We have to also be able to answer his questions and you know he takes this very seriously. He does have a desire to explain that he is innocent, which he is, but he also understands his role as President and that you just can`t throw aside prerogatives to the presidency.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Joining me to take this very seriously, U.S. senator Richard Blumenthal from Connecticut who serves on Judiciary Committee, former "New York Times" executive Editor Howell Raines and Harvard professor, Leah Wright Rigueur.

Senator, what is going on?

SEN. RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D), CONNECTICUT: You know, Ari, I have been on both sides of the courtroom. I have defended criminal cases. I was the United States attorney for Connecticut. I was attorney general at State of Connecticut. I have never seen this kind of bizarre behavior from a lawyer in a series deposit in a serious criminal case. In fact, what went through my mind as I listen to them was that a defendant convicted of a crime and later challenging a conviction would have a very good argument that there was incompetent assistance of council (INAUDIBLE) or whatever they might be.

MELBER: You are talking about a federal ineffective assistance of counsel petition. I would tell you that previously on the show, people have made lawyers have made jokes to that effect. This is one of those days that what you are saying it would go On the Record and say look my lawyer was not working much on my case. He was moonlighting talking about my case.

BLUMENTHAL: Any defendant, and most specially the President of the United States who needs and deserves serious council on that claim. But there is a really overriding and profound point here which I think you made. That we are talking here about the President of the United States who should have some respect for the legal system.

MELBER: Sure.

BLUMENTHAL: He is the commander-in-chief. He is the chief executive in the constitutional system. He is the head of the executive branch. He should respect the rule of law. And he should of all people respect the principle that no one is above the law. And yet this President through Rudy Giuliani has said in effect repeatedly he won`t cooperate with this investigation. He won`t be interviewed unless they comply with equally bizarre set of convictions.

MELBER: Yes. I feel torn. Part of me wants to continue to playing around the margins of how ludicrous this is with you. And part of me want to probe the parts of it that actually implicate the investigation.

So let me do a little more of the serious part. Sean Hannity is a person who shared a lawyer with the President, Michael Cohen, that he hid from the public who is now under serious investigation and strain who just last night the if he finished dealing with the privileged aspects of all of the materials they raided on him including seized tape recordings of the President.

What`s it say not only about Sean Hannity who can do whatever he does in the media and says that he is not a journalist and doesn`t follow rules that`s freedom? What is it say about the President and the judgment of the people around him that knowing all that, two of lawyers are going to literally take the place of Sean Hannity substitute for him while continuing what they say is their public advocacy on behalf of their client, the President.

BLUMENTHAL: What it says very seriously is they are making a mockery of the judicial system, of the rule of law, of our justice system. And ironically, it`s a former United States attorney, Rudy Giuliani who was in charge of a major office in the department of justice who is the one doing it. It also says that there are these legally insidious connections between Hannity and Cohen and lawyers that I think will at the end of the day do none of them any good.

MELBER: Howell Raines, we often draw on your Wisconsin wisdom and experience. We don`t talk about age on this show but as the former person in charge of "The New York Times" and all of the battles in government and legal matters, you have seen a lot. Have you seen anything like this? And in a period of declining norms and expectations is it still a night to address the kind of standards that seem to be failing at the White House?

HOWELL RAINES, FORMER EXECUTIVE EDITOR, THE NEW YORK TIMES: I have never seen anything like this. We have never had a moment like this in our country. And you put your finger on something very important that this temptation to enjoy the comedy. But the country is trembling on the brink of tragedy.

As the senator Blumenthal pointed out it`s this assault on the, not just on the opponents in this legal case but this assault on the judiciary and the entire constitutional underpinnings of our legal system from someone like Rudy Giuliani, you know, I must say, the sound bite you showed, Ari, I had a hard time distinguishing whether the Hannity caller or the two lawyers of the President were the kookier party.

And this is -- we were very caution at the Times about ever using the word unprecedented because as soon as you would be at someone would side the President that you had ignored. But there`s no precedent for this kind of assault on the judiciary, the legal system, directed from the White House.

One wants not to get too extreme in language but right now we saw the few show poll today in the Times, 35 percent of the lesser educated people in this country are in charge and their agent and his mouth pieces are conducting a war on our legal system.

MELBER: Right. And I think, Leah, coming to us from your Harvard expertise, education is often aligned in American politics, not everyone has financial means or where with all to be highly educated but a specific education about how things should work and three branches, the President, that`s something we try to get from our government leaders and not thinking of them typically, traditionally as demeaning it.

With that in mind, take a listen to Rudy Giuliani arguing that effectively the President shouldn`t have to tell his side of the story under oath because of the conspiracy theory that automatically, everyone will automatically believe James Comey not him. Take a listen --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: I think what we have to get clear is the fact that a lots of people interpret it this way. Well, if he is telling the truth, why wouldn`t he just go in and justify? Hey, welcome to the real world. The fact is he is telling the truth. We are walking him into a possible perjury trap, not because he isn`t telling the truth, but because somebody else isn`t telling the truth who they would credit namely Comey.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Leah?

LEAH WRIGHT-RIGUEUR, PROFESSOR, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: So, I think, you know, there`s the line between trying to be a good lawyer for your client and trying to defend your client and being a flat out propagandist. And I think this is one of the things that`s so dangerous about the moment we are in.

We are seeing the erasure and the transformation of norms, of rules, of ethics, of morals but we are also seeing the transformation of fact. You know, it`s one thing again to defend your client, it`s another thing to go on Sean Hannity`s radio show and host it and, you know, essentially give into conspiracy theories for three hours, including indicting a former sitting President.

You know, I think one of the things that we have to talk about really here is the power too of media and propaganda. And so, right now what Trump`s lawyers are essentially do is running a counter PR or counter propaganda campaign and using all of these media networks in order to advance their position. They have been very successful in the past both in terms of exposure but also in terms of reaching, right, people, voters, people from across the country. And this is something that we really have to watch out for and be concerned about.

MELBER: Well. And Senator, I think that`s the only place where you don`t want to see them being misleading and false. And there are consequences for that in court. When it comes out to the body you serve and whether the Senate is ever actively going to adjudicate any of this, it will be ultimately a battle for public opinion. You are an answer to your constituents. And so in that respect if may be that they are short-term pessimistic about what the Robert Mueller probe will uncover and long term optimistic about trying to get a lot of the country on their side, or confused or defining collusion down, you know.

And Rudy Giuliani is clearly going in that direction because it is not just on the radio him sort of freelancing, he wrote out and post it on the internet today, maybe it is time for Sessions to appoint a special counsel who will investigate the conspiracy to defeat Donald Trump by buying ad disseminating these fake dossier as illegal wires and commencing baseless FBI investigation.

Now, some of that is false. And we have to note there`s not been anything about wire taps being found illegal. Some of that is fair opinion. You can debate whether FBI investigations are baseless or not.

But when Rudy Giuliani is the President`s lawyer and actively calls on Jeff Sessions to be involved in something that he is recused himself on because of the DOJ, he seems to be in conflict there between what he is allowed to do which is try to convince the public of something and what you are not allowed to do which is go up against the DOJ recusal precisely because Sessions was too close to the campaign.

BLUMENTHAL: The recusal was correct. In fact, the attorney general of the United States had no choice but to recuse himself. And so, you are absolutely right that Rudy Giuliani is asking Jeff Sessions to do something clearly improper. But he is also doing more which is to discredit or safety discredit the entire investigation. And that`s where I have been so appalled and astonished by many of my colleagues in the United States Congress who have joined in this effort to demean and disrespect, not only the rule of law in general, but also Robert Mueller and this investigation.

And I will tell you that at the end of this era when the history is written, I think the heroes are going to the independent judiciary and our free press.

Hal Raines is a great example of that kind of conscience in our media over many, many years. Because they have in effect exposed this effort to discredit a lawful investigation.

RAINES: Thank you, senator. And I must say I was sharing with senator Blumenthal earlier, I think "The New York Times" and "The Washington Post" and the responsible capital networks have done a really remarkable job of adjusting to kind of unimaginable daily chaos.

And there is -- you spoke of norms earlier, I think we, that entities that we were just talking, are the guardians of the norms now. And it is heart breaking to me that the Republican party who founding to destroy slavery was a land mark in the history of freedom is solid as this man is waging war on our legal system. And I just, my heart almost broke reading the "Times" profile of Paul Ryan this week where he seems obvious to the realities of what is going on around him.

MELBER: Well, let me go to Leah on that because we are over on time, but maybe you could tie it together for us because the political science is the problem, isn`t it Leah, that we have so many people in one party looking at self-preservation over any of the standards and norms they used to talk about.

RIGUEUR: So it`s polarization. Its partisanship and it`s a fact that one party has completely, you know, thrown out the window any semblance of red line, line on the sand, like having a breaking point in favor of a President who most of once hated.

But we also know that, you know, many of them have been implicated in some of the things that have come out but also to that they are incredibly invested in whatever agenda that they push through through this this President in using him as a vehicle in the same way that he is using them as a vehicle. So a lot of this is about power as opposed to party, as opposed to concern for the country.

You know, one of the things that Tony Morrison said is that racism, that inequality, that all of these kinds of things serve as a distraction. And that`s what it is, it is a distraction, because the President refuses to take accountability for the kinds of things that he has been doing. We are not focusing on the things that we should be focusing on.

MELBER: I appreciate that, something to meditate on, an important point.

Professor and senator, thank you. Howell will stick around for fallback Friday. You know how it works here.

We have a lot more though in the news part of the program. Roger Stone`s associate is the first witness to be held in contempt by Mueller probe today.

And the so-called Manhattan Madame testifying before Mueller`s grand jury.

Later, what Leah was just talking about, Trump making an attack on NFL players. We are going to hear an important response in the founder of Black Lives Matters and Deray McKesson.

All that, plus, yes, we will still get to fallback bravo star top of the coffee is here with Howell Raines. They hang out all the time so they might as well hang out at the end of the show.

I`m Ari Melber. You are watching THE BEAT on MSNBC.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Today marks the end of the second week of Paul Manafort`s trial, a new signs in Bob Mueller`s grand jury of an investigation that is circling, Trump advisor Roger Stone. We can report tonight that a witness that Mueller wants to talk with is being held in contempt. That is Stone associate, Andrew Miller.

Now his lawyers argue he shouldn`t have to face the grand jury under these terms so that is why he is in contempt. But it doesn`t mean that Mueller - excuse me, Miller did anything wrong yet. His attorneys say they want to escalate this legal fight on purpose to get a wider hearing on the probe`s legitimacy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In order to appeal, Judge (INAUDIBLE) decision, challenging the constitutionality of the special counsel. You have to have a contempt order in order to go to the Court of Appeals. This case is likely to end up in the United States Supreme Court.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: That is a fair game strategy. And we will be watching if it gets to the court.

Meanwhile, there is another Roger Stone associates Kristin Davis testified in the same grand jury. Now, she was involved in a scandal that took down a New York governor.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Davis reportedly provided escorts to celebs in high- powered patriots on what remain a secret, perhaps the most infamous of them all. Disgraced former New York Governor Elliott Spitzer, otherwise known as client number nine, who resigned office after accusations of spending thousands of dollars per night with escorts, some of whom were Davis` best girls.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Now, that is what in the public domain in terms of history. But again to be clear, we don`t know exactly what Mueller wants to learn from Davis. It does appear though that people around Roger Stone are going into the grand jury box.

Meanwhile, that is not all. In the Paul Manafort trial, there was some mysterious happenings today. The judge stopping the trial for hours without explanation. That`s unusual and ordering jurors to quote "keep an open mind, warning them not to discuss this case while it`s open with anyone."

I am joined by reporter who has been all over this story, NBC`s Anna Schecter and former federal prosecutor Seth Waxman.

Anna, let`s start with what we know and don`t know, which is I emphasized in this kind of case is voluminous. But what do we know about the Madame and the type of people that are headed into the grand jury.

ANNA SCHECTER, NBC NEWS REPORTER: Well, she is a very, very close friend of Roger Stone. They have worked together for since 2010 but he is also godfather to her son. He could have told her any number of things and it does look like this probe is wide-ranging.

Sam Nunberg was on earlier today and he said they asked when he went in and spoke to prosecutors they were asking him every single person that Roger Stone ever worked with. So that is very broad. And Kristin Davis was in there for hours today.

Now she did handle his schedule, set up meetings and she did secretarial work for him. It is usually, when she needed money Roger Stone would create a job for her and have her as an assistant but she said that Andrew Miller handled stone`s schedule several months before the election, the crucial time when WikiLeaks was releasing the DNC emails.

MELBER: And so, the possible inference from that is that Mueller wants to put in front of the grand jury people who can say where Roger was and when he was telling the truth about where he was.

SCHECTER: Exactly right. And she met with a prosecutor last week and seemed to be a real rush to get her in front of the grand jury, get her On the Record just a week later many they`re moving in.

MELBER: Seth, what is that imply to you?

SETH WAXMAN, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Yes, I mean, it implies me that Mr. Stone should start thinking about what he looks like in an orange jumpsuit, you know. I mean, you have five, six and seven associates - close associates of Mr. Stone being pulled in front of the grand jury, people like his mentee Sa Nunberg. He got the social media director.

I tell you, the one that concerns me the most, maybe, is his driver. And Ari, if you would ever get in trouble and the feds start pulling in your driver or your gardener or your plumber, they are digging that deep on you, you got to be really, really concerned about where you sit.

MELBER: And the other piece to this is timing. Anna, was just mentioning that it seemed like an urgent thing to get this material in front of the grand jury. That could be for reasons that are unrelated because anything is possible. Or could be a desire to put material down on the record for potential action, for potential indictment. And you add that to the fact that Randy Credico who broke news on this show by describing how Mueller sent federal agents to New York to talk to him and we broke again the story last night advancing that he was getting a subpoena. That seems to fit in because he is linked to Assange and Stone. Take a look at Credico on THE BEAT this week.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RANDY CREDICO, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Set up a conversation with somebody from the Mueller team and they asked my lawyer if I would like to go down and do a voluntary interview and he said no.

There`s couple reasons he came to me and I kept this under my hat for at least six weeks, I didn`t want to talk about it because I don`t want to instigate the special prosecutor.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: He didn`t want to instigate the special prosecutor. But we can confirm that he is now been subpoenaed with date in September. We here in THE BEAT have fact checked that. An obtained it. So when you look at that situation, does that tell you anything? And does that imply that any action on Stone could wait until after Credico goes in the grand jury or not necessarily.

WAXMAN: I think they want all of these material witnesses into the grand jury so they have entire orbit of evidence and then do whatever bring, whatever action they are going to bring against Mr. Stone who, you know, by many accounts could be kind of the bag man for this trump campaign.

If it is true that they did in fact want that dirt during that Trump tower meeting and they, of course, have claim that nothing came out of that. But remember, three days after the Trump tower meeting, Julian Assange went public and said he was going to released emails related to Clinton.

You know, that is just three days. If Mr. Stone facilitated that or helped carry that, you know, he would be a co-conspirator, an aider and a bettor and would be just as responsible as the principles who wanted that to happen.

MELBER: And let me go to Anna, finally on the other side of this, which is Seth talked about an orange jumpsuit. But we are a long way from conviction. We don`t even have materials that confirm where they are headed. Is it possible that they are being diligent prosecutors, but if they find that the entire story checks out they don`t have anything on Stone.

SCHECTER: It`s looking unlikely but it is possible given the public statements that he made at the time he was in touch with WikiLeaks. The Atlantic published twitter conversation between Roger Stone`s twitter feed and WikiLeaks twitter feeds in October. It was clear they had conversations in the past. There`s a lot there for them to look at.

MELBER: Well, let me say this. Our viewers know you to be a fair reporter and the fact faced with the on the other hand question, you`re answer is well that hand is getting smaller and smaller, so to speak. That likely -- it`s interesting.

WAXMAN: To bring in five former employees, that`s a lot of people.

SCHECTER: It`s telling.

And yes, it`s interesting legally.

Ana Schecter and Seth Waxman, thank you both.

Up next we will turn Deray (INAUDIBLE) about important discussion on race in America. As the white nationalist anniversary in Charlottesville comes up. That`s in just 30 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Another important top story tonight, white nationalist who marched on Charlottesville, well, their allies say they are coming back to the White House this Sunday. The idea is marking the year since alt-right rally, which of course resulted in the killing of a protester.

Now, today Donald Trump was back attacking NFL players for protesting police brutality during the National Anthem and one of his biggest defenders on Fox News Laura Ingraham under fire for very controversial comments about what she views as "demographic changes."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

LAURA INGRAHAM, HOST, FOX NEWS CHANNEL: Because in some parts of the country it does seem like the America that we know and love doesn`t exist anymore. Massive demographic changes have been foisted upon the American people and their changes that none of us have were voted for and most of us don`t like. Now much of this is related to both illegal and in some cases legal immigration that of course, Progressives love.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Laura Ingraham now says those comments "had nothing to do with race." Meanwhile, we can report that across the nation there is a surge in candidates associated with white nationalism.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I consider myself a white racialist.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He`s also campaigning to keep Chicago`s neighborhoods 90 percent white.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Most white people want a white neighborhood.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This monstrous nature of the Jewish people must be known to the public.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s not because we`re racist, it`s because we feel marginalized and we`re the ones who are being oppressed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: We turn now to prominent civil rights leaders in the new generation DeRay McKesson from Black Lives Matter, Patrisse Cullors a Co- Founder Black Lives Matter, she`s also the Author of When They Call You a Terrorist. Thank you both. DeRay, let`s start with the point. This is an anniversary of a thing and a killing of -- that was brought about by the white nationalist. How is a society do we address that and turn it into something potentially more constructive?

DERAY MCKESSON, ACTIVIST: Yes, so this is a racist rally and we should name it as such. I`m less interested actually in the rally and more interested in how this rally functions. You know, just today the one of the leaders of the rally was actually on NPR and he espoused a belief that was just scientific racism and we continue to give platforms to that and we shouldn`t do that anymore. I`m also mindful too of the way that this solidifies a set of beliefs for a base of the Republican Party that benefit through this. So you see Laura Ingraham say things that are really about making sure the country is as white as possible and the reality is that white people are the minority or they`re becoming the minority really quickly and you see this wing of the party fighting against that at every step of the way.

Trump didn`t even condemn the last year and Sessions did call the act evil. He said that he would investigate it but you and I haven`t heard anything about the fruit of that investigation and here we are one year later.

MELBER: I think that`s well put. Patrice, on that very point, I want to play the mother of the woman who was killed at that rally speaking out. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SUSAN BRO, MOTHER OF HEATHER HEYER: I can tell you what David Duke and Richard Spencer and Jason Kessler, and I believe Matthew Heimbach have even said and that is that the current administration has given them to go ahead, given them a thumbs up, giving them a wink and a nod. That`s their words, it`s not mine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: That is potent coming from a mother who lost her child there last year. How does that fit into this, the "political accountability" for what may be separate acts of violence?

PATRISSE CULLORS, CO-FOUNDER, BLACK LIVES MATTER: I mean what we`ve seen since Donald Trump was on the campaign trail is extreme white supremacy an affinity towards white nationalism. He`s allowed four people -- white people, in particular, to talk terribly about Black people, about Muslims. And so when that young person was killed by the protester while it was shocking and disturbing, we knew that Donald Trump created the environment for that to happen.

MELBER: And so DeRay, what is the activism that turns this or is this by necessity I guess defensive activism? In other words, you both are involved in organization that had a wide impact and had a grassroots support, and Black Lives Matter is a term that I think is we`ve discussed, it`s known all over the world. But talking about fighting white nationalists at a grassroots level if you will, is quite different from the work you were doing a few years ago before the Trump era or police brutality.

MCKESSON: Yes, and some of it is being mindful that we can give platforms that normalize this sort of language and these ideas. You know, my challenge to you and all the media is about how we cover this is that your show, shows across the country aren`t having any of the people who went in and killed journalist, you`re not having people on who said that the media is like terrible people who we should hate. Why, because you know that that actually leads to bad things. You know that that speech is harmful. It`s the same with these guys is that they come out and they espouse these things that they say really nicely like they deliver it nicely but the fruit of it is just bad.

The second is that people have been organizing will continue to organize, this will stop any of that but what this does do is like it allows this language to enter into the Civic space in a way that we need to make sure it doesn`t. You know like I know part of free speech is not speech that incites violence and I don`t know any better example of speech that incites violence then-Charlottesville in the recent memory. I don`t even know why they`re back in Charlottesville, why they`re loud back.

MELBER: So on that point, build on the -- on the media particular making. You`re saying specifically what should the media, the television media try to avoid.

MCKESSON: Yes. I think, one if there`s a platform, we should use the actual words and phrases that they say and stop paraphrasing it. The second is that we should also -- hosts should be able to challenge them on the facts. So today on NPR, Kessler literally espoused the scientific racism and the hosts should sort of let them talk and it`s like that is just wrong. It is not that black people have lower I.Q.s than other races like that is what he said, and the host is sort of is like oh, that`s interesting why do you think that? It`s like no, not why do you think that it should be that just isn`t true. And we can`t let people espouse these things and put them into the public conversation because it feeds a set of behaviors and actions that we know are dangerous. And again the media is not having all people who think the media should be shot and killed or the comedian`s are showing the road. You`re not validating those set of opinions because you know it`s wrong.

MELBER: Patrisse?

CULLORS: Well, I just want to make sure that I call out folks on the ground that are going to be you know, dealing with the white supremacist in D.C. Our local chapter the Black Lives Matter Global Network, local chapter Black Lives Matter D.C. is going to be doing a series of events this weekend to both hold space for people who are going to be you know, protesting against these white supremacists but also making sure that people are safe. We don`t know what`s going to happen this weekend and we need people on the ground and our chapter is going to be making sure that folks are safe on the ground.

MELBER: I think you guys have made several important points. The last one, Patrisse, is important which is we are on the precipice of another period here just this weekend where there is a credible higher risk of hate crimes and race-based violence which is part of how we cover it and then try to do that thoughtfully without exacerbating it and both of you offering I think food for thought or for our viewers and ourselves here in the in the newsroom about how to do better. DeRay McKesson, Patrisse Cullors, thank you both.

CULLORS: Thank you.

MCKESSON: Good to be here.

MELBER: I have a programming note to share. MSNBC is airing Breaking Hate which addresses a former white supremacist who tries to bring others back from that ideology and that airs this Sunday night 9:00 p.m. Eastern. Up ahead we take a turn as we still often do and we have the Pulitzer Prize- winning journalist warning Trump`s attacks on the Free Press are dangerous. That`s an important story this week. And also, up next yes, it`s "FALLBACK FRIDAY" and I`m happy to be joined by Tabatha Coffey from Bravo and Howell Raines.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Maybe we could all use this right now because it`s Friday on THE BEAT and it`s time to fall back. I am joined today by Bravo`s Tabatha Coffey or chosen crude Shear Genius relative success with Tabatha and of course, Tabatha Takes Over where she saves salons from the brink of closure.

TABATHA COFFEY, HOST, BRAVO: I do.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COFFEY: I`m Tabatha and I`m taking over. That`s the (INAUDIBLE) and that`s what your sell to client? I`m embarrassed to be here so we`re going to start to change.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You`re a (BLEEP).

COFFEY: Really?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

COFFEY: It`s the wake-up call that you needed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Lord knows I could use a wake-up call, sometimes. I`m glad you`re here. And as always a friend of THE BEAT, former Executive Editor of the New York Times How ell Raines an author of multiple books including Fly Fishing Through the Midlife Crisis. He`s also a Pulitzer Prize Winner. We`ve got some stars here. Who needs to fall back?

COFFEY: OK. So Arizona Cardinals need to fall back. They have a new burger. They`re launching it this weekend. It is seven pounds.

MELBER: Wow.

COFFEY: You get an hour to consume it and if you do you get a free t- shirt. I mean who wouldn`t do it for a free Cardinal shirt and you get your picture on the Jumbotron.

MELBER: It looks good though. I got to be honest.

COFFEY: It looks revolting. It looks revolting. It has 5/3 pound patties on there, five hotdogs, eight chicken tenders, eight slices of bacon, 20 slices of cheese and five bratwursts with of course lettuce and tomato and I think they give you 12 ounces of fries which is bizarre.

MELBER: 12 ounces of fries.

COFFEY: 12 ounces of fries.

MELBER: Not enough --

COFFEY: No, I mean --

MELBER: To go with the of that size.

COFFEY: It`s absolutely disgusting.

MELBER: It`s been a long week so you know, we take on the big issues and fall back Friday. Howell, who need to fall back?

HOWELL RAINES, FORMER EXECUTIVE EDITOR, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Well, despite my occasional warnings about let`s not be seduced into thinking the Trump Administration is pure comedy, I have a real weakness for Vice President Pence. He`s my "FALLBACK" guy. And he needs to fall back from that speech he gave Thursday in which he warned the universe that we`re going to send warfighters into space and their goal will be to achieve U.S. dominion over space. And you know, I think about these science-fiction warnings about intergalactic flesh-eating aliens out in the universe monitoring us and I think about them looking at this mousy fellow talking about dominating them and saying I don`t think so, Mickey.

MELBER: I mean, I don`t know if there`s any sci-fi fans out there but when you look at Ender`s Game by Orson Scott Card or Star Wars or Star Trek isn`t the less than always we don`t need a space war?

RAINES: Let`s leave them alone.

MELBER: Yes.

RAINES: Don`t tell them where don`t tell them we`re here.

MELBER: Let`s not go too far --

COFFEY: I`ll give them a burger because that will surely get rid of them anyway.

MELBER: Well, it`s funny you mention that because one thing I will say for viewers is when you ran the New York Times my understanding is you suppress several key stories that we`re going to explain that there are UFOs.

RAINES: Yes.

MELBER: And you always censored that. That`s important just to get on the record for everyone watching.

RAINES: Well, we were alarmed because they kept kidnapping people from these trailer parks in Alabama and we thought that was discriminatory.

MELBER: You always getting Alabama in there. How about -- how about my "FALLBACK" and I want your expertise on this because you are I think it`s fair to say fashionable.

COFFEY: Sometimes.

MELBER: Yes, more so than many. And there is a new dog bed for very fashionable doggies. And I`m calling on it to fall back. You`ll see it here because it is $1,000 for this letto daybed. And that just seems to me even if you love your dog, where my dogs at, I don`t think they should be in $1,000 daybed.

COFFEY: No, I`ll agree. That`s a "FALLBACK." That`s definitely -- $1,000 dog bed, and I love my dog, he`s my baby but no.

MELBER: And is this just targeting -- how does this work with fashion? It`s like you can get rich people to buy anything.

COFFEY: I think it`s getting more so and everyone just thinks it`s a little bit more special because it costs so much more money and that`s what is hooking people in because they feel a little cooler, and a little trendier and a little hipper if you can spend more.

MELBER: And blow that kind of money on your pet. Do you have any other "FALLBACKs" for us?

COFFEY: My other "FALLBACK" is actually from -- Franklin Graham had a rally on the weekend in Oregon and he talked about Governor Kate Brown saying that he asks everyone that attended to pray for her so that she could be a Christian. It sounded to me like he was doing that because she is a self-proclaimed yoga practicing woman and he thinks that she needs to be prayed for because she`s a yogi.

MELBER: It`s funny. I didn`t know that your "FALLBACK" and mine would have so much in common and that they`re both about the downward dog to some degree.

COFFEY: Absolutely. You say -- you see what happens?

MELBER: I`m very -- I`m very sorry about that.

RAINES: That`s was very good.

MELBER: I`m very sorry. Howell, who needs to fall back?

RAINES: Well, I will play the Alabama card again.

MELBER: It doesn`t surprise me.

RAINES: My "FALLBACK" is another comical Trumpian Jeff Sessions and he`s falling back all the way to Alabama. The tradition in Alabama that started with the George Wallace and it`s been taken over by the Conservative Republicans who run the state now is to use the law as an instrument to deny people of color certain rights and government services. And so this move he made this week or he writ large in the form of government to deport these young -- this mother and daughter to Salvador before they could have their day in court you know, it was something that all of us need to fall way back on.

MELBER: Well, it`s important and it goes to family and it goes to due process and so I`m happy to have that one in and shine a light on that as well as some of the lighter stuff we`ve done. Tabatha Coffey, your first time on the show, I hope you come back. Howell Raines, thank you as always. Up ahead we have an important discussion of the attacks on the press from Trump and how it`s affecting his supporters. And later why Omarosa`s new claim about Trump hush money is so familiar.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: President Trump attacks the media as a kind of trolling bait and we often decide not to cover it, but this is important. There`s an impact now on many Americans. A new poll finds that 43 percent of Republicans say they think the President should actually get the authority to close down news outlets engaged in any vague claim of "bad behavior." Now our Constitution prevents that regardless of who is president but it may be the result of many years of Donald Trump hammering at the media and Free Press and anything that criticizes him. Donald Trump was not always like that. In fact, ABC today on earth the 2013 interview where he praised one of his most frequent targets in the press.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I`m a fan of the Washington Post and I have to tell you I think that Jeff who really is an amazing guy, I think he`s going to bring it to that next plateau. I think he`ll do great. I think it`s a great thing for the Washington Post.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Almost makes you wonder if he believes what he says now because he goes after the Post all the time. Does Donald Trump think that these attacks will help him politically and not care about the constitutional implications? Well, to dig deeper I was just able to sit down with Pulitzer Prize-Winning journalist Patt Morrison to discuss this and she makes two key points. Here`s one of them.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PATT MORRISON, PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING JOURNALIST: It isn`t about challenging the quality of her reporting or saying this fact is wrong or that fact is wrong, it`s about saying I don`t want anybody to believe you from the get-go, only believe me. This is practically Orwellian that he doesn`t want his audiences to listen to any outside information except what it is he`s giving them. And by demeaning the press, he undermines what is essentially a First Amendment function of functioning democracy needs an informed citizenry and we`re not getting that in some quarters if you rely only on what Donald Trump is saying.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Ms. Morrison also pointed to the unprecedented rebuke from the United Nations about the President`s discussion and attacks on the press.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MORRISON: This is the kind of rebuke that you see delivered to other nations, to nations where journalists are being imprisoned, where journalists are being killed, that we hear it about the United States these two experts from the United Nations saying you have to stop criticizing the press the way you have been. You have to stop undermining the Free Press and challenging verifiable facts, all of which Donald Trump has been putting in his playbook all since the election and during his presidency.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Tonight we give Miss Morrison the last word on that but up ahead our final word on why Omarosa`s hush money could matter.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Finally a note on former reality T.V. star Omarosa who has this new memoir about her time in the Trump White House which is going to get a lot of political attention. There`s one claim, in particular, that could matter. Omarosa asserts that when she was removed from the White House, Trump`s campaign offered her what she described as a hush money contract for $15,000 a month so she would keep quiet. That is actually the exact same amount that Trump`s bodyguard Keith Schiller is receiving after he left the White House. It comes from the RNC which says it`s paying him for "security services" in the White House for its part says that Omarosa book is full of lies. Why does this all matter? Well, for one thing, political payments are regulated and there`s a question of whether Mr. Schiller is being paid for security services or for his silence or something else.

For all the hype around Omarosa, some of what`s in that book may come back to haunt the White House. That does it for THE BEAT. I can tell you also a programming note if you`re interested, I will be in for the great Lawrence O`Donnell tonight at 10:00 p.m. Eastern right here on MSNBC. But don`t go anywhere because "HARDBALL" is up next.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END

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