Trump worried he may lose 2020 over bad economy. TRANSCRIPT: 8/16/19, The Beat w/ Ari Melber.

Guests: Juanita Tolliver, Michelle Goldberg, John Flannery, Bill Nye,Jessica Pels, Jon Batiste

CHUCK TODD, MSNBC HOST: That`s all we have for tonight. We`ll be back Monday with More Meet the Press Daily. And if it`s Sunday it`s Meet The Press on your local NBC station. We`re going to look at economy 2020 race. My guest President Trump`s Chief Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow and Democratic Presidential candidate Beto O`Rourke as well as potential Republican Presidential candidate Mark Sanford. The Beat with Ari Melber starts right now. Good evening Ari.

ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: Good evening Chuck. Thank you so much. We have a lot to get to tonight. Donald Trump freaking out about a potential economic downturn. A key Trump advisor now agreeing to testify publicly about obstruction. And later tonight we turn to a very important topic. Scientists warning this July was the hottest ever on record. Wow.

Well, Bill Nye, the science guy is here later for a look at this very real climate crisis so we have all of that but we begin tonight with this new reporting that Donald Trump`s getting nervous after a week of warnings of economic turmoil. Apparently worried that without a strong economy, he might have nothing else to run on in 2020.

Privately Donald Trump sounding anxious and apprehensive about the economy, now calling executives to sound them out about what comes next. One Republican close to the administration telling The Washington Post, bottom line he`s rattled. Now compare this reporting to Donald Trump very public stance, which is kind of a reminder that for all the critics who cast Trump as a kind of emotional undisciplined hot mess.

If you believe this Washington Post account, on this he`s actually quite disciplined at least when it comes to lying in public about the things he contradicts in private.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: See the bottom line is I know you like me and this room is a love fest. I know that but you have no choice but to vote for me because your 401Ks down the tubes, everything`s going to be down the tube.

So whether you love me or hate me, you got to vote for me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Trump also saying it will be tough to win his trade war that he started with China. Fact check, last year he himself promised it would be easy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: By the way, I never said China was going to be easy but it`s not tough. And they want to make a deal.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When a country USA (ph) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good and easy to win.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: As for what comes next, the reporting says that Trump has no new steps plan to counter a possible recession. Now let`s take that in. This could affect everyone, the economy. There could be legitimate reasons to not have those plans. There are Presidents who have policies that believe the government does more harm than good if it tries to get into short term market management.

You hear this thing about well, maybe some corrections are necessary. But tonight let`s be clear, the reports are not that Trump is using any of those policy or factually based reasons but rather he doesn`t believe the facts and he`s taking the conspiratorial view that the actual economic data itself cannot be trusted.

And maybe there`s a larger conspiracy among economists to thwart him. This reporting showing the depths of the President`s conspiracy theory world view. First, real simple, the data is the data. Second, if you take the view that maybe people do within reason skew somethings towards their goals, but let`s remember these leading economists, they lean right and towards the GOP, not left or socialist or against it.

Now while Trump may have some of the details wrong, it is true that a bad economy hurts the incoming President almost every time. Since the civil war check this out only one President has won re-election when a recession hit in the final two years of their term and that`s not a recent President.

It was over a century ago, a time when think about it, the bad news that we`re talking about tonight, that`s getting out, the bad news that might hurt Trump if the market slumps continue, back then it didn`t spread as fast, there wasn`t a daily national media updating everyone on a kind of a vision of the national economy.

So where does all this leave America heading into this weekend? We`ve had weeks of race baiting and division from this President. Very real jitters over the markets and his trade war. Questions about what Trump will do here is economic and political position gets more desperate. Those rough realities, they may sink in for many and this is a President with a level of approval that can`t afford to lose hardly anyone.

So it is worth as you know the facts because you`re watching the news and we deal in the facts here, it is also worth hearing how these realities are dealt with inside the MAGA universe because at the President`s new rally, we didn`t see bad news rebutted so much as denied and distracted away, replaced with a kind of meandering stadium set list that could leave the even hard core fans somewhat confused.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Is there anything better than a Trump rally?

CROWD: No.

TRUMP: And remember when they used to say that the Hillary Clinton campaign is highly sophisticated, highly sophisticated. She did a lot of bad things, folks. I will tell you this. We now have a great Attorney General. By the way, the wall is being built. That`s there.

That guy`s got a serious weight problem. Go home. Start exercising. Got a bigger problem than I do. There`s never been a movement like this. Never. Our movement is built on love and it is.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: I`m joined by New York Times Columnist Michelle Goldberg whose latest piece is with Trump as President, the world is spiraling into chaos and Juanita Tolliver, Campaign Director for the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Juanita, is the movement built on love and what do you make of Trump`s predicament?

JUANITA TOLLIVER, CAMPAIGN DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS ACTION FUND: I mean the movement is based on lies. You saw that on full display in New Hampshire where he honestly is working every single day to deflect attention from the fact that one, this recession is impending and two, the reality is he and his trade war are exacerbating the situation.

He didn`t have to do any of that. He didn`t have to escalate things with China. He didn`t have to change tariff programs that are hurting farmers and people every single day in this country but he created an economic situation that`s going to be exacerbating this upcoming recession and now his play is to lie and deflect.

So I don`t think there`s anything else to expect from him but that as we get further into 2020.

MELBER: And Juanita, take a look at his numbers which are very low. It`s become sort of commonplace in politics to discuss the fact that his numbers don`t move. They probably don`t move much because they are so low. If you`re stuck at 40-4, you`re dealing with the hard core partisan base. Does that in your mind explains some of why we`re seeing these new reports that Trump whatever he says in public is privately nervous?

TOLLIVER: Absolutely right? His numbers are already low and those approval ratings are linked largely to the economy so if the economy tanks then he has nothing left but I - except for like a long history of broken promises around taxes, around trade, around healthcare, all of the things that he has not delivered on, that he promised whether in the 2016 campaign trail or as President.

So he honestly has nowhere to run here.

MELBER: Michelle, your view of all this and of that - of that sound we heard from the rally and I do think although we don`t broadcast the entire rally or broadcast critically, I think it`s a reminder of what he does and where he`s taking his folks. Did you find that sort of meandering or telling in anyway because it was certainly all over the map?

MICHELLE GOLDBERG, COLUMNIST, NEW YORK TIMES: Well, I guess the one thing that I would maybe disagree with Juanita about is that I actually don`t think his approval ratings low as they are. The people who approve of him, I don`t think it`s because of his performance on the economy. I think it`s because he says send them back and you know denigrates people of color, denigrates religious minorities, right?

Like embodies of this kind of bullying, patriarchal model that people had missed when it went out of fashion and so I think that he will, you know, just as he did in 2018, right? He didn`t run of the tax cuts, the tax cuts are extraordinarily unpopular. A lot of people in this country feel like their own personal economic situation is precarious even if they rate the economy - even if they say that the economy is doing well.

One thing that we`ve seen in this era is that perceptions of the economy are increasingly polarized by partisanship and so he may very well just do if there`s a recession, he might simply deny it, he might be - the same way you have him there saying that the wall`s being built, right?

The way that he deals with inconvenient facts is just to lie to a base that`s in a kind of hermetically sealed an epistemological bubble. You know, that said if you`re - if you`re 40 percent--

MELBER: Sounds comfy.

GOLDBERG: If you`re at 40 percent, you know, a recession`s obviously not going to help you.

MELBER: Right and that and that goes to the sort of the two sides of that. It polarizes as you say Michelle, but then there`s a breaking point if people are hurting enough. Juanita, this is not a Presidential debate but your names and views were mentioned by the other guest so you get to respond.

TOLLIVER: Allow me to respond, Ari.

MELBER: And you get more than 15 seconds.

TOLLIVER: Oh, what a gift. But you`re absolutely right. I do think that a lot of his bases founded and really mobilized and excited by the fact that he continues to pivot back to his racist statements and disgusting slurs about and attacks in targeting people of color.

But I do think there is part of the base that is no matter how much they want to reject the notion that they are being hurt by his policies, they`re going to have to face it, when it`s harder to pay their rent, when it`s harder to put food on the table, when it`s harder to make ends meet.

MELBER: Yes, I almost wonder and maybe this is overly optimistic because you both are driving it I think, the nuance of something important which is whether the fake news` `deny everything strategy` actually runs into a brick wall on these economic issues in a way that might wake people up and take them out of I think where you referred to as this hermetically sealed cave, I`m paraphrasing, if there`s a wake up moment because Trump has done the opposite. Take a listen to him on the data.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: The unemployment number as you know is totally fiction. These are real unemployment numbers. The 5 percent figure is one of the biggest hoaxes in American modern politics. The jobs numbers are phony numbers. They were put there to make politicians look good and particular Presidents look good.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Michelle.

GOLDBERG: My sense is that if it does happen and to be clear, we don`t know that there`s going to be a recession, there`s likely going to be a slowdown of some sort but whether or not it is you know, dramatic enough that people feel it personally in their own lives, I don`t think we know.

And we also don`t know you know again, because we`re so polarized, if you look at what`s happened with some of the Trump supporting farmers, you know it took a long time for their confidence in him to be shaken and he`s out there taking a meat cleaver to their livelihoods and it`s you know for a long, long time they`ve retained their faith in him and many of them still have it.

So you know again, I just don`t think we know how tight economic performance is to partisan approval.

MELBER: Right. Well, in fairness - in fairness Michelle, what about all the brand new coal mines that have reopened?

GOLDBERG: I mean we`re actually in a manufacturing recession right now.

MELBER: It`s just a coal line joke.

GOLDBERG: No, but I mean like these jobs he has said that he`s going to bring back specifically, coal mine jobs, manufacturing jobs, right? Those jobs, there are fewer of those jobs than there were when he took office and it`s not clear to me at that that has really hurt him with his base.

TOLLIVER: I think what--

MELBER: So Juanita, let me go to the final word to you building on Michelle`s point. I just want to ask you know, my reference to the coal mines is, it would be great if there was a resurgence and it`s not really the President`s job to put it in a conservative rhetoric to pick winners and losers within different industries, right?

There`s nothing conservative about saying well, you want more of this in less of that because there`s some cartoonish notion of who has what jobs or where they would be and yet that`s exactly what the President sort of ran on in 2016 to Michelle`s point and to the jitters in the market.

The broader economic picture has not taken that hit yet but at the same time the results he has promised aren`t really there yet. A final word, Juanita.

TOLLIVER: Yes, those broken promises are stacking up and as people are sitting at home again without jobs, those manufacturing jobs that he promised that weren`t going to leave the country, that have left. Those farmers who have soy product and Dairy products that aren`t moving because of his trade wars, they`re feeling it and I think that`s what they`re going to take to the polls.

MELBER: Juanita Tolliver and Michelle Goldberg kicking off a big Friday show, thanks to both.

TOLLIVER: Thank you.

GOLDBERG: Thank you.

MELBER: Absolutely. Great to see you both. We have so much ahead. Now there is more details about the Trump administration`s handling of the prison where Jeffrey Epstein died suspiciously including new details about why it is being ruled a suicide.

Former Trump aide, Corey Lewandowski now saying he will testify publicly. He`ll face key questions about obstruction. On the show tonight, Bill Nye, the science guy is here live to talk about the climate change tipping point and later tonight, this could be one of our best Fall back Fridays ever. NBC`s Savannah Guthrie and jazz legend Jon Batiste are both here.

All that and a whole lot more, in fact we`re going to be back in just 30 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: New developments on this Friday night. Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski after some wrangling is now saying he will testify publicly in this impeachment probe by the House Judiciary Committee.

Committee ramping up what is now calling formal impeachment proceedings according to Chairman Nadler investigating these obstruction issues. Now White House officials have talked about invoking executive privilege in some sort of bid to stop someone who never worked at the White House.

That was a shaky legal argument. Lewandowski here - here clearly seems to be moving away from that bid and saying look, he will engage. I want to turn right now to former federal prosecutor John Flannery who knows his way around these issues as a Counsel to three different congressional probes. Good to see you, Sir.

What does Corey Lewandowski know and how would it assist an obstruction probe?

JOHN FLANNERY, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Well, it`s critical. It`s one of the obstruction points in the Mueller report. He submitted to interviews on at least two dates and what he outlined was a request by the President, two different meetings. The first meeting he was asked to go to the Sessions, the Attorney General.

Ask him to praise how Trump didn`t have anything to do with the Russians and to encourage the Attorney General to limit the ongoing investigation of the Special Counsel to perspective elections.

And he tried to do that and came back to a second meeting and said that he had gone to Dearborn. The significance in the Mueller report is that they outlined what this meant and what it meant was that there was an obstructive act because there was a nexus to an ongoing grand jury investigation and they believe that there was clearly intent.

So his testimony under oath before the Judiciary Committee would translate into a pretty fair description of obstruction of justice by Trump. Of course, we have to wonder whether or not his agreement today to appear before the Judiciary Committee isn`t a head fake and one day before his appearance, we won`t hear about some use of immunity or something that should block him from appearing.

But presently he says he`s going to be there so we`ll wait and see if he shows up on September 17.

MELBER: How would you advise the Committee to deal with a witness like this? Mueller - Mueller was basically able to table and defer a lot of questions. Of course he was speaking as a former government official with some credibility. Here you have someone who and I`ve mentioned on the show and I would like to keep my viewers involved in the transparency of this.

I`ve spoken to Mr. Lewandowski since our reporting where we played things he said on this show about the issue that were proven to be false by the Mueller report. I`ve invited him back on. He hasn`t come back yet but what do you do with a witness like this who has proven willing to tell falsehoods about the same thing that he told the truth to Mueller on which shows he`s got a - he`s got a bifurcated brain about I`m going to - I`m going to say it one way on the news and then another way under oath.

FLANNERY: Well, I guess he figures no one `s going to prosecute him and that`s one of the problems with the proceedings thus far in Congress. You know, we hold him in contempt and then we think that the AG`s office, the U.S. attorney`s office is going to prosecute him for contempt and that`s not going to happen.

So we go to court and we spend a lot of time and they do more delay. I think it`s time that they considered using their inherent powers. The ones that were used back in the teapot dome, there`s a case McGrane against Dorothy who was the Attorney General who was believed to by misfeasance and nonfeasance failed to prosecute you know, conspiracies to affect our trade.

MELBER: You talking about jailing them inside the capital.

FLANNERY: Absolutely, absolutely. It`s about time that these people stop talking about using their inherent powers for a penalty or a fine which they need the court to enforce. Instead they can have the Sergeant at arms, appointed deputy and if they fail to testify, put him in custody.

And there`s no reason why they shouldn`t do it. This is a constitutional crisis of historic dimensions. Every day we have a new act or other that is erring on the side of despotism, the general conversation now is that we have something like a made up dictator in the west wing so I think it`s time that we act affirmatively and forcefully because the nation is suffering because of who is now the thief of state.

MELBER: Well, when you lay it out like that, to some people it may sound extreme or strong but as you say there are precedents for it and there is statutory constitutional structure for it which is do you ever march anyone right out of the committee room and into a - into a jail and be a big debate. But John Flannery, you always keep us thinking, Sir. Thanks for being here.

FLANNERY: Thank you.

MELBER: Yes Sir. Up ahead, we have new reporting on the medical examiner`s findings in a story we`ve been covering. The mysterious death of Jeffrey Epstein in jail before trial but first, this alarming news from our own government scientist on global warming. Bill Nye, the Science Guy live on The Beat. We are excited. Next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Nobody breaks it down quite like our special guest tonight. Bill Nye, the Science Guy making his debut on The Beat right now and Bill, I want to ask you about a series of pieces of news we`ve been getting. These government scientists tell us July was the hottest month ever recorded on earth. Americans are greeted with headlines like this.

Extreme climate change has arrived. The system is basically code red. I mean, look at the new images of this reality. I want to show everyone as we tee you up. These sled dogs wading through water on top of a melting ice sheets in Greenland. A huge gusher hit when 12 billion tons of ice recently melted into water in just 24 hours.

Here`s an exhausted polar bear the people saw wandering hundreds of miles from home into a Russian city because he was starving for food. Or take India where we have these climate changes clashing with poverty. They are trucking in water for a city of 7 million.

When we take it together, have we hit the breaking point?

BILL NYE, THE SCIENCE GUY: No, but we will soon. That`s the claim or the conclusion of the one of the most recent intergovernmental panel on climate change, the IPCC report. So everybody, we have a chance to do this right, to save the world for humans. You know the earth`s going to be here no matter what we do. We want to save it for us, for us humans.

And so the current ministrations taking stronger steps in the wrong direction.

MELBER: You mention the administration. Take a listen to Donald Trump on the issue.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: It`s so hot in here maybe I`ll start to believe in myself. Who believes in global warming? Who believes in global warming? So Obama is talking about all of this with the global warming and a lot of it`s a hoax, it`s a hoax. I mean, it`s a money making industry, OK?

Is there a climate change yet? Will it go back like this? I mean, will it change back? Probably.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER: Plenty to choose from there. I guess I ask you one, will it change back and two, does his type of a bluster make it harder for scientists to get their jobs and their work to matter?

NYE: Well, of course. Of course it makes it - his bluster is very troubling and it makes it harder for everybody. Instead of being the world`s leader technologically and addressing climate change, United States has become a pariah.

People, my colleagues on other continents are very concerned about the United States` lack of initiative. I`ve been to Greenland and really is amazing when you go to the glaciers and watch them melt. When you go to the middle of the ice sheet, the east Greenland Ice core research project, there`s nothing but ice and so they - we pull up Ice cores of ancient water, ancient ice that contain bubbles of ancient atmosphere.

And we can see the world`s never gotten this warm this fast. That`s the key everybody. It`s the speed at which things are getting warmer. And the latest news for us on the science side is this idea that you could tie endangered species to profits, to money. And but it`s just old fashioned thinking but somehow you can manage resources and eliminate species and ecosystems and still count on everything working OK.

When you reduce diversity in ecosystems, biodiversity, ecosystems are less resilient. That is to say the animals and plants living there have a much harder time makes - getting into the future, it becomes a desert, it becomes a swamp or rather a swamp without living things in it.

And so this is very well established science but having the administration continually fight against science is really troubling and I think what`s going to happen very soon is farmers, people in the heartland are feeling the effects of climate change. Their croplands are drying out faster than they used to. Their parasites and pests are showing up sooner in the growing season and sticking around longer which requires more inputs, more pesticides and herbicides.

More mechanical removal of weeds and this is costly and then of course, there`s more flooding. So this is the time everybody, to address this and I just want to - I want to disabuse everybody of a common notion. People say to me Bill Nye, Science educator guy, what can I do about climate change?

Well, yes, recycling bottles is good. That`s a good thing. Not using more energy than you need, not wasting water, those are good things but we need big ideas Ari. We need big changes. We need sweeping changes in the way we`re doing business and so to have a guy as a department of - the Head of the Department of Interior who is tied to the fossil fuel industry, the extractive industries of mining and oil and gas is probably not in anybody`s best interest. What impresses me so much-

MELBER: Do you--

NYE: Go ahead please.

MELBER: Well, I`ve got 30 seconds left. Are you gesturing at the idea that while those are the baby steps, you don`t want people patting themselves in the back too much and saying well, I`m thinking local so I don`t have to do the politics or the international politics which seems to be where this - this fate of the human race on earth is going to be decided in kind of the - from a geological perspective, the kind of the near term.

NYE: Well, yes. Just we have to think big. I tell everybody, please vote. If you don`t do anything else, please vote and take the environment into account when you vote, no matter which side of the red or blue you`re on. Just take the environment into account. But this is our time, we just celebrated landing on the moon, walking on the moon.

50 years. Amazing because we threw money at the problem by just reasonable reasoning that was at least one and a third, one and a half interstate highway systems in cost. If you throw that kind of money at something, we can get it done. Let`s go people.

MELBER: I feel like - yes, I feel like you`re saying it takes some green to be Green Bill.

NYE: Yes, exactly.

MELBER: I loved having you on. This is your first time. We tweeted it out. Our viewers some of whom engage with at The Beat with Ari, our accounts online, they were thrilled that you`re doing it. I hope you`ll come back, Sir.

NYE: Hit me the ball as we say.

MELBER: All right.

NYE: We can do this everybody. I`ve got lots of specific ideas for you so that we can - there I say it - change the world.

MELBER: Let`s change the world. Let`s save the world. We`ll put you in coach again and I hope you have a great weekend, Bill.

NYE: Thank you, Sir. Carry on.

MELBER: Thank you. As I mentioned, we have a lot of this show. A big announcement coming up tonight. New findings about the mysterious death of Jeffrey Epstein in a Trump run jail and the biggest issues facing women in the age of Trump. We will speak live to the very new Editor in Chief of Cosmo magazine and then this, Savannah Guthrie and Jon Batiste together tonight on Fall back Friday.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER: Tonight, New York`s chief medical examiner has announced that Jeffrey Epstein`s cause of death was suicide by hanging.  This comes while his alleged victims continue to seek justice.  One accuser filing a new lawsuit and this is not because he died but rather a brand new rule in New York that allows accusers more time to file these new suits.

Now, I want to turn to a special guest, someone breaking ground on many major stories right now.  This is the first time on THE BEAT for the new editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan Magazine Jessica Pels.   She`s Cosmo`s youngest such editor ever in the magazine which bills itself as a fresh funny and fundamental take on the news, is increasingly covering policy and politics.

In fact, it was making waves with this feature in the wake of these mass shootings profiling a top-secret investigator infiltrating these hate groups to try to stop the most violent men in the country.  Other news organizations touted that story as a must-read.

We should mention the magazine is also been covering 2020.  And that since Pels took over, the Web site has now jumped to 26 million more visitors in the course of a year which may be why the New York Times has profiled her highlighting more digital experience than all past editors in chief.  Jessica Pels is on THE BEAT.  Thanks for doing this.

JESSICA PELS, EDITOR IN CHIEF, COSMOPOLITAN:  Thanks for having me.

MELBER:  What do you think is important in how you`re approaching these stories?  We mentioned that work on tracking hate and the role of sexism and misogyny.  And why do you think as we mentioned for our viewers who are interested in the way a politics and civic engagement is changing especially for young people in the Trump era, why are you finding more eyeballs for that?

PELS:  Well, so Cosmo is the litmus and the voice for all things millennial culture.  Our audience is 81 million strong.  And the thing about young women is that they care a lot about what`s going on in the world around them and how it impacts their safety and their success.

A story like the savants is an unfortunately timely story to tell.  It`s really important because of the devastatingly proud moment that misogyny is having in this country between the rise in insults and men`s rights activists online, and the dark domestic violence histories that a lot of the mass shooters in this country have.

Again, it was a really timely story and it`s a once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing for us to be able to reveal.  We worked really hard on it for an entire year.

MELBER:  Well, and the way you put it, I think for viewers thinking about 2020, thinking about these candidates, how they reach people.  If you`re reaching tens of millions of young people who could be involved, who could be a voting bloc, how do you view that?

When you tell a story like that, are you saying you need to know about this and the role of this online misogyny in potential violence against people, against women, mass shootings because it`s important to know or are you also saying there`s something you can do about it or you should back gun control?

PELS:  It`s absolutely largely about gun control which is a primary issue for my audience.  They tell us we pulled them all the time during the debates between the debates to see what their attitudes are in terms of the election, and gun reform is a huge issue for them.

The first issue is actually health care not just because of the attacks on reproductive rights but because of cost and access.  So these are all things that she`s juggling all of the time and we`re making sure that she has the full perspective in regards to the savant.  The interesting thing is that we`re not seeing the stories of the men that she does catch, it`s her missus who make headlines.

And that`s sort of a fascinatingly devastating thing for her as a person after El Paso, for example.  She took it really personally that she hadn`t caught that shooter and that`s a hard burden to bear alone.

MELBER:  I also want to ask you about all the women running for president.  Everyone knows it more than ever before.  Take a look about how this gender issue comes up sometimes on the trail.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

YASMIN VOSSOUGHIAN, MSNBC ANCHOR:  A record number of women winning in the midterms and yet today the New York Times is reporting some top Democrats are still asking the question, can a woman be elected president?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Are you sick of all the talk of how you`d be a perfect running mate?

SEN. KAMALA HARRIS (D-CA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  I think that Joe Biden would be a great running mate.  As vice president, he`s proven that he knows how to do the job.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Kamala, very aggressive in a prosecutorial sense but I just don`t know if she`s likable.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Democrat women said that they felt like they should vote for a man this time.  What do -- what do you think when you hear that?

SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR (D-MN), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  I think may the best woman win.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER:  My final question to you is how do you running this magazine address those issues, cover that, and speak to younger voters who as you know and I think as our audience knows, will remind folks the actual data overwhelmingly broke with their older generations or their parents in opposing Donald Trump?

PELS:  Well, first of all, my audience and I find it thrilling that there is a record-breaking number of female candidates for president.  But what`s interesting is that in the last debate, my audience 66 percent of them said that gender is actually not a deciding factor in who they will vote for in the election.  For the majority of them, age and race are not either.

What they`re most concerned about our policies and a candidate who can get Trump out of office.  Right now, for my audience, that seems like Biden.  We`ll see -- we`ll see if he can stay in the lead.

MELBER:  That`s really interesting coming from you given the work you`re doing and for us to learn from you because Cosmo here is clearly as it`s long been, but clearly a growing force.  I hope you come back on THE BEAT, Jessica.

PELS:  Thanks.  Me too.

MELBER:  Thank you.  We`re fitting a break, and then we have a very special fall back Friday coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER:  Now we turn to some 2020 news you need to see.  In American politics, there is a split in how we experience campaigns.  On one level there`s the serious stuff, the debates the interviews, the policy papers.  But then out on the campaign trail there`s all this other stuff where candidates are supposed to have fun and hang out and be down-to-earth.

It`s the sort of the political nerd equivalent of that tabloid Us Magazine feature stars.  They`re just like us.  And now, one of the newest candidates who actually just made the strict cut as one of the nine candidates for that next debate Andrew Yang is following the tradition with this dance in South Carolina.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  Now to the right.  Hey, I see you.  Now to the left.  We need some more.  Take it to the left.  To the right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER:  Yang showing a practice knowledge of the cupid shuffle, a 2007 hit that`s found something of a second life at weddings, bar mitzvahs, and other festivities across the nation.  He`s not alone.  While Bernie Sanders made news this week for the interview he did with the rap star Cardi B, Kamala Harris has been showing her familiarity with Cardi B`s hit "I like it" during a staff meeting.

On that track, Cardi famously says she`s about my coins like Mario.  They call me Cardi B, I run all this like cardio.  And to paraphrase Cardi, you can`t win this primary without raising a lot of those coins.

Now, Harris incorporates music into her own campaigning.  Here she was with a drum line in South Carolina.

These moments tend to work best for candidates when they`re real.  You lean into the song you know, you don`t just do it for the gram.  Now that appears to be the case in this moment we want to show you.  Elizabeth Warren backstage before an Ohio speech loosening up to the 1964 classic Hang On Sloopy.  This video uploaded by former Obama digital director who Warren hired for her campaign.

It`s way broader than American politics.  British leader Theresa May was dancing on this U.N. trip here you see to Nairobi.  And archaeologists say the earliest records of human dancing date back 5,000 years to ancient Egypt in India.  This is all part of our real-world culture and communication so it makes sense that it`s part of our politics.  And that`s true even well after these types of political people make it to the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  All right, I`ll be going like this.  Hey.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MELBER:  Maybe there`s a life lesson here.  For most of us, just dance like nobody`s watching.  For candidates, somebody is always watching but just keep on dancing.  Or as the great Bob Marley said, forget your weakness and dance.  I`m going to fit in a break and then something that we`re very excited about, our special "FALLBACK FRIDAY" tonight next with Savannah Guthrie and the Colbert Show`s Jon Batiste.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MELBER:  It`s time to fall back.  Joining me now is Grammy-Nominated Musician and Composer Jon Batiste.  He`s recorded and performed music with a wide range of artists from Stevie Wonder to Ed Sheeran as a new album called Anatomy of Angels live at the Village Vanguard.  You can catch them, of course, every weeknight as the bandleader on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

And we`re also thrilled to welcome Emmy Award-Winning Journalist Savannah Guthrie, Co-Host of "THE TODAY SHOW" NBC News Chief Legal Correspondent, also the New York Times bestselling author for her children`s book Princesses Wear Pants.  You heard it here.  Nice to see both of you.

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE, NBC NEWS CHIEF LEGAL CORRESPONDENT:  Hi!

JON BATISTE, MUSICIAN:  Shaking down.

MELBER:  There it is, two first time "FALLBACK" guests together.  You guys look like chess pieces.  You look incredible.

GUTHRIE:  We are ready to make beautiful music.

BATISTE:  Yes.  Let`s do it.  I`m ready, you know, moving.

MELBER:  Savannah, what needs to fall back.

GUTHRIE:  OK, Ari, I`ve been meaning to talk to you about this.  I think season two of any show needs to fall back because even when it`s good, it`s bad, you know.  Like you`re so excited, you love a show in season one -- I loved Homeland for example -- season two, a disappointment, right.  Big Little Lies, I loved season one.  Season two was good, but it wasn`t as good as season one.

So I think season two is almost always a letdown.  So I think it just needs to fall back and maybe just skip right to season three or just keep it at one season.

MELBER:  So you believe in the sophomore jinx.

GUTHRIE:  I do.

MELBER:  Do you think people know?  Do people know their season two is going to be hard to keep the magic but we haven`t grown enough for the later season?

GUTHRIE:  Yes.  I think actually it`s a growing season literally because they`re like well, we know the show was good enough that people want more of it.  But we didn`t really actually think this far ahead to know what season two would be.  By season three, they`ve worked out the kinks --

BATISTE:  Yes.

GUTHRIE:  -- but you know, I think -- like even Mad Men, season two was good but it could never be as good as season one.

MELBER:  My issue was Mad Men is it was mostly meetings and I was like I have enough meetings at my real job.

BATISTE:  I don`t know, man.  Season two is like where they try to do what they did for season one but they know they can`t repeat their selves. `

GUTHRIE:  Yes.

BATISTE:  So then you got to be like well, let`s (INAUDIBLE) it a little bit.  I think you got to quit while you ahead.  I agree.

GUTHRIE:  Yes, exactly.

BATISTE:  I`m all season two fall back.

MELBER:  Not to flip a fall back on to the other guests, we don`t usually do that, but this is a special fall back.  A lot of artists as you know struggle with their sophomore album.

BATISTE:  Oh my goodness, that stuff could come out.  Sometimes it`s like yes, other times --

MELBER:  I mean, Jay-Z`s widely considered worst album is the second album, and he says it was the expectations of grades but then he had to go bigger, he went too pop and he lost his voice.  And then his later albums as you know, everyone said, oh no, you`re great again.

BATISTE:  What it`s like is you live your whole life building all these experiences into your first album.  And that`s your first album, that`s like your whole life`s experience.  And then your second album is like OK, we need another album.

GUTHRIE:  It`s true.

BATISTE:  And you don`t think about it.

GUTHRIE:  It`s true, right.  Like I just got to get to the summit.  It`s like climbing Mount Everest and then not knowing like how to climb down.

BATISTE:  Absolutely.  You`re like OK, now that I felt -- it`s like bombing like Chappelle says, you know, bombing is the greatest thing that can happen to a comedian.

MELBER:  Because it frees you.

BATISTE:  Because it frees you.  It`s like, OK, well, got that out of my system.

GUTHRIE:  Yes, liberating.

MELBER:  I know you`re busy so I don`t know how much you watch THE BEAT but that`s good news for us because we bomb pretty regularly when we go our jokes around here.  All our dad jokes bomb.

GUTHRIE:  I don`t believe that.

MELBER:  Well, ask around, Savannah.  Ask around.  Jon, what`s on your "FALLBACK" list?

BATISTE:  OK.  So hot dog flavored ice cream sandwich or a hot dog and an ice cream sandwich put together.

MELBER:  Yes, this is real thing.

BATISTE:  I can`t mess with it.

GUTHRIE:  It`s wrong.

BATISTE:  It just ruins a childhood pastime of mine of getting the ice cream sandwich, you know, the long ones or sometimes a Neapolitan ones with the three different flavors in there and you just have it after you play basketball or you`re out skating or something, and you ice cream sandwich.

And now they`re going to ruin my nostalgia in the imagery of my childhood by placing this hot dog flavored abomination in people`s freezers.  I`m going in somebody`s freezes into something and I`d be like, what you got it there?

MELBER:  This I think -- first of all -- first of all we tackle the big issues here so thank you for bringing this to the table.

GUTHRIE:  That`s right.

BATISTE:  Well, absolutely.  You know, I got to do it, Ari.

MELBER:  Second of all, this is that thing with -- I actually think this applies to a lot of things with technology, this is sort of flavor science if you want to call it that.  The fact that we can now do things doesn`t mean they should all be done.

BATISTE:  That`s right.

GUTHRIE:  Yes, just because you can doesn`t mean you should.  And you know why I object to this? It`s taking two good things and making one bad thing.  I love an ice cream sandwich, and I love  hot dog.  But I do not love a hot dog ice cream sandwich.

BATISTE:  No.  Show some restraint.  Come on.

GUTHRIE:  Exactly.

MELBER:  Anything else on your list?

GUTHRIE:  Yes.  Actually, I`m glad we`re here to raise these issues.  And I`m -- I think I speak for all of womankind that the air conditioning in the office in summer is far too cold.  It`s freezing.  It`s like a meat locker.  Over at "THE TODAY SHOW" in the studio, I swear they must hang meat overnight and then remove it because it`s like 42 degrees in there.  We can see our breath.

All the guys are like it`s perfect, it`s perfect.  The girls are freezing.  We have chills.  I literally have a space heater in my office.

BATISTE:  Oh my goodness.

GUTHRIE:  In my own office just to keep -- there it is.  There`s my space there, which I think violates like 10:30 Rock rules.  There it is.

BATISTE:  That`s like a --

GUTHRIE:  My contraband space heater.

BATISTE:  You got a space heater.

MELBER:  I didn`t know we`d have a little scoop here today.  But the times rule article that you`re citing, Savannah, of course, sites that this is actual unseen systemic discrimination because the formula was devised by men who are wearing different outfits than women historically in the workplace.

GUTHRIE:  Ari, I wouldn`t come here and bring you an issue without it being substantive.  Of course, it`s important.  I mean, this office thermostat is often for 68 degrees or so.  These buildings were built for a time in the 50s and the 60s when it was men going to work and three-piece suits and they have not cut up at the times.

And women are coming to work and they`re cold and they`re having to wear blankets and have space heaters, and we just -- we`re not going to take it anymore.

BATISTE:  Yes, I wouldn`t take it.  I`m from the south.  I don`t even like air-condition.

GUTHRIE:  You know what, I don`t like air-conditioning either.

BATISTE:  You know what I`m saying?

GUTHRIE:  Yes.  I`m from Arizona.  It gets too cold.

BATISTE:  Oh yes.

GUTHRIE:  Yes.

BATISTE:  What part of Arizona you`re from?

GUTHRIE:  Tucson.

BATISTE:  Oh yes, hotel congress.

GUTHRIE:  That`s right.

MELBER:  Jon Batiste, congrats on your new album.  It`s an honor to have you here.

BATISTE:  Thank you.

MELBER:  Savannah Guthrie, long-time fan, first time having you here.

GUTHRIE:  I hope to come back.

MELBER:  And I love coming on the "TODAY`S SHOW" with you.  We`d love to have you as a "FALLBACK" regular.

GUTHRIE:  I would be honored.

MELBER:  Count on it.  And let me show you before everyone goes, one more thing.  Up tonight on our YouTube page, we have an extended one-on-one interview with our friend right here Jon Batiste.  We`re talking about that new album I mentioned as to why he wants to, "make jazz great again."  We`ll get into all of that.

And as I mentioned on the show sometimes, we post these things in multiple places depending how you want to find them.  YouTube if you`re into that or right here on a podcast, that extra interview which hasn`t aired anywhere yet with Jon Batiste will be up on the podcast this weekend as well.  Check it out.

Now we have one more thing before we go.  Bill Nye the science thing was here, debut on THE BEAT talking about big ideas for climate change, investing in the future.  We did want to leave you with one more thing from Bill Nye on his Instagram page.  He makes these important points in his Bill Nye colorful way.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL NYE, SCIENTIST:  So here it is, people.  I`m going to level with you.  The real reason, you should do your part to combat climate change is it will make you filthy (BLEEP) rich.  Can you imagine how much sweet, sweet cabbage you will be piling up if you could invent a cleaner energy source or help develop carbon capture technology.

  END

 

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