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The Rachel Maddow Show, Transcript 06/11/15

Guests: Larry Hall, Joseph McQuaid

CHRIS HAYES, "ALL IN" HOST: That is "ALL IN" for this evening. THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW starts right now. Good evening, Rachel. RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Thanks, man. HAYES: You bet. MADDOW: And thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. Bear with me here for a second -- there is an important point to this, and it is kind of a funny, important point. But you have to bear with me. OK. Most cities around the country that have gay pride parades hold their gay pride parades in late June, and that is for specific reason. It`s because the Stonewall riots in New York City happened in late June 1969. And the first pride parades ever were started as a commemoration for those riots. So they happened on the anniversary of those riots. So, in most cities, late June is when your local pride parade happens. There are a few places, though, in the United States that do their pride parades at different times. Where I live in western Massachusetts, the city of Northampton, Northampton is so unbelievably awesomely lefty up there, that we peg our gay pride parade not to the anniversary of the Stonewall riots, but to May Day, because yes, sure, those were riots, but it`s International Workers` Day, comrade. And there`s also the city of Miami Beach in south Florida. They hold theirs not in June, they hold theirs in April. They hold theirs earlier than everybody else. And I don`t think in Miami Beach that it`s for any specific political reason. In Miami Beach, they just do theirs in April because it`s nice there in April. And, of course, it is traditional to show off a little of what you`ve got at a pride parade. It`s traditional to be a little ostentatiously shameless at a pride parade, shamelessness and pride being two sides of the same sequined Speedo. So, Miami Beach may be the one place in America where you can guarantee that in April, it will probably be warm enough outside to do your, you know, slinky topless leather hose and thing or wherever else you`re going to be celebrating your pride and there won`t be any risk of you being chilly, even though it`s April. So, the Miami Beach parade stands out for its timing. It`s earlier than everyone else`s. And it stands out for its Miami fabulousness. But it also stands out for its role in one of the most hilariously satisfying news stories of this summer so far. On last night`s show, we made a little bit of fun of the evangelist Franklin Graham. Franklin Graham is the inheritor of the rich evangelism empire built by his father, the late Reverend Billy Graham. And this empire is a big one. He`s got lots and lots and lots of money. And when Franklin Graham saw this advertisement running on TV recently, it`s an ad run by Wells Fargo for the last couple of months, it shows a same-sex couple, two women learning sign language, they`re trying to learn sign language, they`re taking online courses, they`re taking in person classes, they`re being very earnest about it, and then at the end of the ad, you learn the reason they are teaching themselves sign language is because they`re about to adopt a deaf daughter who is deaf, and they wanted to be able to communicate with her from day one. A total tear jerker of an ad, right? Even if it is from some freaking bank. But Franklin Graham saw that ad and was enraged. He was so offended by that ad that he decided to pull all his Franklin Graham evangelism money out of Wells Fargo Bank. And he wrote this Facebook post explaining why he was doing it. "Have you ever asked yourself how can we fight the tide of moral decay that`s being crammed down our throats? Every day, it is something else. Wells Fargo Bank is using a same-sex couple in their advertising. Let`s just stop doing business with those who promote sin and stand against Almighty God`s laws and His standards. Maybe if enough of us do this, it will get their attention. Share this if you agree." So, Franklin Graham shared. He moved his money out of Wells Fargo Bank and he moved his money instead to a different place. He moved it away from the godless, nice ladies learning sign language for their new adopted deaf child, and he decided instead to put this money in a bank called BB&T. And the reason this is a funny story is because BB&T is maybe even a gayer bank than Wells Fargo is. BB&T recently built a makeshift chapel inside one of their branches to host a same-sex marriage wedding reception. BB&T is the lead corporate sponsor of a program called legacy couple which specifically celebrates gay and lesbian couples who have been together longer than ten years. B&T is also, as a bank, a platinum level sponsor of -- the Miami Beach gay pride parade. So, it`s funny, right? This guy being motivated by anti-gay animus and puts his money in the bank that sponsors the gay pride bank in Miami. It is funny. It`s delicious. It`s de-lovely. But Franklin Graham today has published an op-ed in "USA Today" saying that this is not funny at all. In fact, this is exactly what he meant to do. He argues today that his objection is not to some bank sponsoring a gay pride parade. His objection is to a bank using that terrible nice ad to promote homosexuality. Quoting Franklin Graham`s op-ed today, "Why did we move from one bank to another? Because in our view, Wells Fargo went beyond being gay friendly to being a public advocate. We simply chose not to continue doing business with a bank that is promoting something that violates our conscience and beliefs." But the new bank he just moved his money to sponsors literally a public parade of gay people who are proud of being gay and are promoting acceptance of themselves as such. I mean, if you`re worried about people publicly advocating support for the homosexual lifestyle, a gay pride is literally that, out loud, in heels, in public, blocking traffic in full view of everybody. I mean, it`s possible somebody told him that maybe -- maybe somebody said your new bank supports Miami Beach gay pride, so he thought they were doing like private self-esteem classes or something, and he was OK with that. I would like to be the person who tells him what they support with his money now is a parade. But my guess is that somebody already shared the news with him today after his amazing op-ed was published. I don`t want to promote homosexuality. I`m OK with the promote homosexuality parade, though. Will it be on TV? I saw the other one on TV. My TV. When it comes to the anti-gay side of the argument right now, trying to follow the logic of their argumentation is not, I think, the best way to understand what it is they are doing and how well they are doing. I don`t mean to say that they`re dumb or that they`re inherently illogical. It`s just that they are not now counting on making great arguments in order to get their way. And that is true around the hilarious story of Franklin Graham and his money who very soon will be stuffing his millions into a mattress that he`s personally verified as a super anti-gay mattress. But it`s also true in a lot of the litigation that`s happening right now around gay rights, there`s a civil trial going on in New Jersey, an actual trial, you know, with witnesses and experts and everything -- a trial on the issue of conversion therapy to try to turn kids from gay people into straight people. One of the dramatic turns in that case is that the judge, in a case like this, has to rule on the credentials and the coherence and intellectual rigor of experts on both sides to qualify them as expert witnesses, and the judge in this case dismissed every one of the would-be experts on the anti-gay side because the judge said none of them were actually qualified experts in any field that would justify them testifying in a court of law. All of their experts got thrown out because none of them were actually expert in anything. In the big famous case on marriage in California, the Prop 8 case, they have the same problem. They had a really hard time finding anybody who would stand up to scrutiny as a legitimate legal expert witness on the anti-gay side. One of the guys they did get on the stand in that case who did testify in the anti-gay side in that case, he later recanted everything he said and said actually he`s for gay marriage now. So, they`re having a hard time making good arguments now. Particularly arguments that stand up to, you know, a strong other side, an adversarial process, right? But just the fact that they`re making not great arguments doesn`t mean that they`re losing their fight. I mean, even as the logic keeps getting fuzzier and fuzzier and fuzzier on the anti-gay side, the political victories on the anti-gay side keep piling up, including two really big ones, two really radical ones that happened today. The first one was in Michigan, which was a little out of the blue. People knew this was on the docket in Michigan. I don`t think anybody expected it to pass as quickly as it did. Certainly, nobody expected Michigan Governor Rick Snyder to sign it into law less than a day after it passed. But today, Rick Snyder signed into law this new thing in Michigan which will let Michigan adoption agencies deny adoption services to anyone on the basis of any religious claim or prejudice. And there`s no protection for any groups, any couples under this law. And the religious objection can be to anything as long as you say it`s from your religion. So, as of now, you can be the right to adopt in Michigan if you or your partner was ever divorced or if you and your partner are of different religions or if you and your partner are you`re both Jews and the person you`re dealing with at the adoption agency doesn`t like Jews. Some people have raised religious exceptions to interracial couples. Michigan adoption agencies can now say that they will refuse an adoption to a couple on the basis of that couple being an interracial couple, if they claim that racial prejudice is rooted in their religious faith. In Michigan, the law sponsors made clear that the couples they were aiming to discriminate against with this bill are same-sex couples. But any couple in Michigan could be denied now on the basis of anything as long as somebody said they had a religious reason for making that objection. So, that happened today in Michigan. And in terms of the logic for explaining this one, check this out, this is amazing. This is Rick Snyder`s statement on signing this law today. This is how the governor explains why he signed this law today, which makes it legal to tell families this they are not allowed to adopt because of their race or their religion or because they`re gay or anything else that somebody says has some basis in religious doctrine. This is how he explains it today when he signed this thing. Look, quote, "Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation ensuring Michigan children up for adoption have the greatest opportunity to be placed in loving homes." Wait, what? Here`s the quote from Rick Snyder, "We are focused on ensuring that as many children are adopted to as many loving families as possible, regardless of their makeup." So, the way we`re going to do that is with this new law that ensures that loving families will not be allowed to adopt Michigan kids because of the makeup of those families on the basis of the religious beliefs of the people who run the adoption agencies. That`s Michigan. That happened today. And something similar happened today as well in North Carolina. This one we`ve been watching for a few days. When it finally happened today, it was described as a legislative ambush in North Carolina. This has been sort of circling. We`ve been wondering what`s going to happen with this for a few days. But today when it finally happened, North Carolina Republicans brought it up without warning and they allowed zero debate on it. But what they passed in North Carolina today is a bill that says local public officials in that state do not have to give you a marriage license if that public official has some religious objection to you getting married, any objection. And that is not just a theoretical possibility or theoretical concern in North Carolina. When it became clear that North Carolina Republicans were really going to try to pass this thing, Carol Ann Person, North Carolina resident, wrote an op-ed in "The Raleigh News and Observer" in North Carolina about she and her now husband, she`s white and he`s black, they had gone in 1976 to their local courthouse in North Carolina to get a marriage license. Quote, "People always say your wedding day is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your life, and I was expecting mine to be exactly that. But when we walked into that government office together, we were told that the magistrate on duty wouldn`t give us a marriage license, I was flabbergasted. We had planned everything, we had all our paperwork, we were legally eligible to get married. So, why wouldn`t he marry us? The reason it turned out was because Thomas is African-American and I am white. The magistrate told us that marrying an interracial couple was against his religious beliefs. I was so surprised that a government official was using his own personal religious beliefs to deny us a civil marriage license that I didn`t know what to say. There was a second magistrate on duty, but he, too, said he would not marry us, because doing so would violate his religious beliefs. One of them took out a Bible and began to lecture us about their religious views and why Thomas and I should not be together. We eventually went down the street to the local legal aide office and returned with a lawyer, but the magistrate still refused." And it`s true. I mean, for generations, people have cited the Bible, right? People have cited specific Bible verses as the reason they are religiously opposed to interracial marriages. When George Wallace gave his inaugural address as governor of Alabama and he said, famously, "Segregation today, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever," he followed it with this conciliatory explanation that he thought segregation could be good to black people and should be viewed as good for black people, because after all, it comes from the Bible. It`s in his religion. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) FORMER GOV. GEORGE WALLACE, ALABAMA: We invite the Negro citizens of Alabama to work with us from a separate racial station, as we will work with him to develop, to grow an individual freedom and enrichment. This is the basic heritage of my religion, for which I make full practice, for we are all the handiwork of God. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: The handiwork of God. But God made separate handy works. Franklin Graham says he`s got nothing against gay people, just that God told him to take his money out of Wells Fargo and put it this that other bank. God has not yet explained what a parade is, but presumably that`s next Sunday`s lesson. Michigan Republicans want foster kids to not be placed in otherwise loving suitable homes because God might tell some adoption agency employee that a Muslim family in Dearborn, Michigan, is inherently unsuited to raise children because they have not recognized the gospel of Jesus Christ. And now in North Carolina, what was aimed to be an anti-gay bill to stop gay couples from getting married in North Carolina has gone into law today. It`s in effect today because it was an override of a veto, and the law in North Carolina now says, as of today, you no longer have, as a North Carolina resident, you no longer have any legal right to pick up your marriage license and get married in North Carolina without being subjected to a religious test by whatever public employee happens to be on duty that day, looking you up and down deciding what their god thinks of your life. Joining us is Larry Hall, Democratic leader of the North Carolina House of Representatives. Representative Hall, thanks very much for joining us this evening. It`s nice to have you here. STATE REP. LARRY HALL (D), NORTH CAROLINA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: Thanks for having us, Rachel. MADDOW: So is this a done deal? I mean, it`s my understanding that this is law now, because it`s the overriding of a veto. But am I right that there`s also some procedural concerns as to how this happened today? HALL: Well, yes, Rachel, and certainly, it is the law now. We did override the governor`s veto, the Republicans did, and it will certainly head to court, and we`ll spend a lot of the citizens money to get a court decision that says what we knew was illegal, what we knew was unconstitutional, but what we did anyway has no legal effect. MADDOW: On substances, I understand it, this bill allows magistrates and registers of deeds to recuse themselves from marriages, to deny people marriage licenses, to say I will not do that for you based on their own sincerely held religious beliefs. Is there -- is there language in the bill that defines that, that defines the scope of what religious beliefs might be grounds for recusal? Are there things that are out of bounds? HALL: No, Rachel, there`s no description of what a religious belief would be and there`s no description of what you have to do to prove it other than just say it. And you don`t have to say it in advance. You can say it as soon as someone presents themselves or whenever you feel it`s necessary as an individual. MADDOW: So, from the perspective of a couple in North Carolina turning up to get their license, for them they have no idea if it`s going to turn into the sort of humiliating standoff where somebody tells them no, my God judges you unworthy of marriage and you can`t get your license from me, we`re going to start a process by which you can get it from somebody else. Nobody actually knows that`s going to happen to them until they get to the office and their local county or whatever? HALL: That`s correct. As a matter of fact, Rachel, they don`t know if they`ll get the license and even if they get the marriage license, they`ll go through the same test or decision when it`s time for them to get married by a magistrate. So, it`s a two-step process and they can be discriminated against at both instances. MADDOW: Just to be clear now, in terms of how this moved forward, do you think the next stop for this, now this is law and it`s in effect in North Carolina, do you think the next stop for this is the courts, that this will just become a big legal issue for the state? HALL: Almost surely, Rachel, it will go to court. We`ve had precedent already established that moving a bill forward and a veto in this manner is unconstitutional and the last case that we had, the precedent we have right now says that. And the content of the bill itself is unconstitutional. So, again, this will be about the 14th time that this legislature has passed a law that we know is unconstitutional, that they admit they know is unconstitutional. And an unconstitutional manner, and to spend the money just to have the courts slap it back down. MADDOW: Wow, Representative Larry Hall, Democratic leader of the North Carolina House of Representative, you guys have been through the ringer over the last few year. Just been a radical transformation in your state -- thanks for helping us understand this later chapter. Appreciate it, sir. HALL: Thank you. MADDOW: All right. I have an important correction I mean sincerely. Near the start of the show, I referred to the late Reverend Billy Graham. That was wrong. And I`m very sorry. Reverend Billy Graham is very much alive and kicking. He`s 96 years old. I`m sorry about the mistake. I don`t even know how I made it. All right. Much more ahead. We`ll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: So this time last night, we were reporting as the news was breaking basically that the Republican Party`s 2016 debate plan was descending into chaos. FOX News announcing in a hurry last night that they would add a whole new separate event, a whole new sort of debate to the Republican primary debate schedule, a separate debate before the first national scheduled debate on August 6th. They`re adding this event so there would be some venue that day that would include all the candidates who didn`t make the cut for the main event on FOX that night. FOX News had to rush that announcement last night because of what a New Hampshire newspaper did to challenge them as put them on the spot. This little New Hampshire newspaper challenged FOX News. FOX News last night folded. But this fight is not over. And the publisher of that newspaper is going to join us here live in just a moment. It`s very exciting. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: It`s day six now. This is officially the longest jailbreak in New York state history. The two prisoners who cut holes in their cell walls and shimmied out of maximum security prison in Dannemora in New York this weekend have still not been found. Yesterday`s news was that the search for them had broadened to include not just New York but also Vermont. Since the prison is near Lake Champlain, which is New York on one side, and Vermont on the other. But then today`s news brought the search back in tight to the prison, with authorities setting up a new perimeter immediately adjacent to the prison, and stretching to the southeast toward a nearby town called Cadyville. This is very, very close to the prison. If the escapees are there, it would mean that they have not gotten far at all over these last six days. The new tight focus on this area immediately next to the prison was apparently sparked by more than one police bloodhound catching what`s described as a strong scent of these two escapees in that immediate area near the prison. The search has been going on all week now, but today was the first day schools were actually closed in Dannemora to give law enforcement more room to maneuver. History says these guys will be caught. But history also said these guys would have been caught by now and they haven`t been. Day six, manhunt continues. We`ll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Running for president is really hard. Just ask Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas. Senator Cruz was the first Republican to officially announce that he`s running for president in 2016. He announced on March 23rd in a speech at Liberty University. Since then, approximately one gazillion other people have entered the race alongside Ted Cruz. But Ted Cruz would like you to remember that he`s been campaigning for a very long time and he`s very tired. Quote, "Dear insert name here, I`m about to ask you to make a sacrifice in the next 48 hours. But before I do, I want you to know, I wouldn`t ask you if I hadn`t already done it myself. You see, running for president of the United States is a significant sacrifice, and I must share with you, I`m committed to sacrificing a great deal for our campaign. Time with my family, health and sleep. I`m sacrificing even more sleep with long nights and constant trouble, and the pizza diet is a staple on the campaign trail. Finances. The cost of campaigning back and forth across the country for president is increasingly expensive. Personal time. You think of this the least, but as a candidate, my days are no longer my own. Days start before dawn and many times don`t end until early the next morning. There`s almost no personal time when you run for president." This was a fund-raising e-mail sent by the Ted Cruz for president campaign today, telling people how much he really freaking hates this running for president thing, and so, won`t you please donate to his campaign? Ted Cruz`s warnings about how terrible it is to run for president and eat pizza all the time, those warnings are apparently not deterring anyone else from joining him in that same terrible sacrifice. On Monday, Jeb Bush will announce his candidacy, followed by Donald Trump on Tuesday. Hillary Clinton is already in, but she`ll give her campaign kickoff the public speech this weekend on Saturday in New York. But the Democratic dynamic this time is obviously really different than the dynamic on the Republican side, if only because there are so many Republican candidates, potentially viable Republican candidates in the running. As you know, FOX News announced a few weeks ago that only Republican candidates who placed in the top ten in an average of national polls would be invited to participate in the first debate of the 2016 race, which will be on August 6th. For most voters and potential voters, their most extensive exposure to the candidates, the way they decide between them is those debates, right? Excluding candidates from the debates, especially from the first debate in a very real way, basically takes those candidates out of contention for the nomination. But FOX says no matter the size of the field, they`re only going to take ten, based on national polls. Which national polls? Who knows? How are they going to calculate? Who knows? But this decision to basically ignore a big swath of Republican candidates so early on in the race has a lot of people mad inside the Republican Party, understandably. And it all basically came to a head yesterday, and specifically last night because of New Hampshire, because live free or die, because New Hampshire doesn`t take stuff like this lying down. Yesterday, 56 New Hampshire Republicans and conservative activists sent a letter to FOX News asking them to change the criteria so more candidates would have a chance to participate in the debates. And that started a very interesting ball rolling, because a few hours later, "The New Hampshire Union Leader", the largest newspaper in New Hampshire decided to do more than just complain about that FOX debate, they decided to blow it up. "The Union Leader" announcing yesterday at the exact same date on the same night, as the FOX debate, they would hold their own event, their own candidate forum also on August 6th, that night, in direct protest of the FOX News event that night. The publisher of "The Union Leader" saying, quote, "What FOX is attempting to do, and is actually bragging about doing, is a real threat to the first-in-the-nation primary. FOX boasts that it will winnow that field of candidates before New Hampshire gets to do so. That isn`t just bad for New Hampshire, it`s bad for the presidential selection process, by limiting the field to only the best-known few with the biggest bankrolls. Why the RNC would defend this and be a party to it is baffling." And the gauntlet was thrown. So, Republican candidates for president now have to decide if they want to do this FOX News debate where only ten of them are invite when there are like 20 major candidates, or if they want to do this event with the biggest and most influential newspaper in the all-important state of New Hampshire. Can`t do both. They`re at the same time in different places. What are you going to do? And, by the way, the RNC says if any candidate chooses to participate in a non-RNC sanctioned debate, that candidate will be kicked out of all of the remaining RNC sanctioned debates for the duration of the primary. So, the stakes are high, right? One RNC official from New Hampshire tried to tamp that down and told "The National Journal" maybe there wouldn`t be a conflict. He said, as far as he understood it, participating in the New Hampshire event wouldn`t break the RNC rules about unsanctioned debates because that one wouldn`t really be a debate. The candidates would only be allowed on the stage one at a time. OK, so maybe standoff defused? No! No, not at all. Check this out. The publisher of "The Union Leader" newspaper told "The National Journal", your report about our newspaper having only one candidate at a time is false. Whoever fed you that is, and I quote directly, "full of B.S." Asked to clarify whether his forum would have multiple candidates on stage at the same time, he simply replied, "Yes." Yes. Yes. Yes, New Hampshire`s biggest and most influential paper really is throwing a grenade into the Republican Party`s screwed up presidential primary plans. I mean, this is the choice for the candidates now. They can screw over New Hampshire and make the RNC happy, even if the RNC lets a cable news network decide who`s allowed to compete for the nomination and who isn`t. Or they can go to New Hampshire instead of doing this flawed FOX debate, and thereby face getting excluded from all the other potentially similarly flawed official RNC debates for the rest of the whole year. The publisher of "The Union Leader" newspaper, Joseph McQuaid, is a revered figure in New Hampshire conservative politics. For years, his newspaper regularly referred to George W. Bush as Junior Bush. In 2011, he called Rick Perry a big disappointment. He said Rick Santorum has been out of office too long. He said Michele Bachmann is nowhere. He minces no words. Every four years, as Republicans vie for an endorsement from New Hampshire`s largest newspaper, Joseph McQuaid, Mr. No Mincing Words, he`s the guy they court to get that endorsement. And now, he is flexing his muscles, in an effort to maintain that power against Goliath, right? Against the whole Republican Party and not to mention FOX News. Just a few hours after announcing his forum last night, FOX News announced that they too also have a new idea. They say they`ll host a kind of kid`s table forum just for the candidates who don`t make their top ten cut for the real debate. They`ll host that in the afternoon before the adult debate on August 6th. Is that going to defuse this crisis? I don`t know. Right now, there is a very real tug of war going on between the stakes that have played a crucial role in the primary process on one side, particularly New Hampshire, and FOX News and the National Republican Party on the other. A big fight over how the primary process should go. I have no idea who is going to win. But Joseph McQuaid, the publisher of "The Union Leader" joins us next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RICK SANTORUM (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: In January of 2012, I was at 4 percent at the national polls, and I won the Iowa caucuses. I don`t know if I was last in the polls, but I was pretty close to last. So, the idea that the national poll has any relationship as to the viability of the candidate, ask Rudy Giuliani about it. Ask Phil Gramm about it. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum speaking last month. He placed second overall in the 2012 primary. If the first debate of 2016 were held now, Rick Santorum would not even be invited on the stage, which would take him out of contention in the primaries all together. Well; yesterday, the largest newspaper in New Hampshire offered a new more inclusive opportunity for candidates seeking the presidency. One that`s already caused some serious drama within the highest ranks of the Republican Party. Joining us now for the interview is Joseph McQuaid. He`s publisher of "The New Hampshire Union Leader", who yesterday announced that his paper will host a competing event for candidates, the same evening as the FOX News debate on August 6th. Mr. McQuaid, it`s really great to have you here tonight. Thanks for being here. JOSEPH MCQUAID, NEW HAMPSHIRE UNION LEADER: Hey, Rachel, you are my new hero. I watched your program last night and I thought you really grasped what is important about the New Hampshire primary with your examples of McCain and Clinton who didn`t have a shot, and wouldn`t be on this debate either. But they came to New Hampshire, met people and turned it around. MADDOW: Thank you for saying that. I feel like it`s not a liberal or conservative thing, it`s not a Republican or Democratic thing. It`s something that we`ve learned about the early states and the values of how New Hampshire and Iowa in particular take their responsibility seriously as early states that try to usurp that is something we at least ought to have a fight about. We shouldn`t just hand it over to a cable news network to do the winnowing on their own, instead of letting the voters do it. MCQUAID: Exactly right. And it doesn`t matter, conservative or liberal. I think to be -- try to be fair to the RNC and the networks, I don`t think anybody had any idea a year ago that this Republican field was going to be as big as all those elephants you had behind you last night. MADDOW: Yes. MCQUAID: But it is, and there is no clear front-runner. No anointed one. Jeb Bush isn`t the front-runner. Scott Walker isn`t the front- runner. And you can go on and on with the names. I don`t know if your statistic of a gazillion is exactly right, but I think it`s three quarters of a gazillion. But there are some serious people. This is supposed to be held in Cleveland, Ohio. Why, I`m not sure. But I think you and others have pointed out that the governor of Cleveland, Ohio, who may get into this thing, and has some street cred as a governor and congressman, may not make the threshold to be in the debate in his own state. MADDOW: It is -- it is remark -- I mean, you can imagine how mad John Kasich feels about that when he looks at that prospect. I wonder if the anger of individual candidates about this, particularly guys like John Kasich and Rick Santorum and Carly Fiorina and some of the other people who have a real claim why they should be on the stage -- is it they`re upset about the debates that motivated you in part to say that "The Union Leader" ought to do your own event, that you ought to compete essentially with FOX that night? MCQUAID: Not really, although I`ve asked several about it. And I`ve -- it was more -- two things yesterday. One was the letter from the 56 people in New Hampshire who made a very valid point and they`re all Republicans. They`re taking on their own party on this. And, secondly, I read some things on the Internet concerning statements that FOX people had made about and you`ve used the quote, that they were going to winnow the field before New Hampshire. Well, who the hell are they? MADDOW: Is the RNC lobbying you about this stuff? Do they want you - - have they talked to you about your announced forum here? Are they trying to get you not to do this? MCQUAID: They`ve talked to my editor a couple of times, who used to work for this TV station. They have not talked to me. I understand tomorrow I`m supposed to tape a program for another network and the guy who is the lead guy for them in this matter is supposed to be on at the same time and I`ll be interested to make his acquaintance, because either he or somebody else who is spreading those tales that we were going to play nice and abide by the Republican national rules regarding a forum. I`m not sure what the Republican national rules are regarding a forum. I like to see them. When FOX made its announcement last night, hey, we`re going to have a forum too, what kind of forum are they going to have? Are they going to have the same kind of forum that the Republicans agreed on? Which you said is one at a time on stage. That`s like watching paint dry. I think it would be better to have some interaction. MADDOW: Have you heard from candidates yet who have committed to coming to your event? Has anybody told you they`ll do it for sure? MCQUAID: One, who is a real long shot, who says to say hi to you. He used to be the governor of Virginia. MADDOW: Jim Gilmore, tell him I said hi back. MCQUAID: He seemed to be serious. He`s a guy who was the governor of a big commonwealth when 9/11 happened. He ran a 9/11 commission. He`s a military guy. And the only way that he`s got any shot in hell at this is coming to New Hampshire and meeting voters, which he`s done quite a bit of. And, you know, lightning can happen in a bottle, although I`ve been distressed in recent year that even with New Hampshire and Iowa, there`s so much influence by the national parties and so much money involved that we used to be the starting point for the primary process and the election process. Now, we`re close to the end point. I`m speaking of the New Hampshire primary and South Carolina. And I don`t think that`s a good thing. So, I would be very happy, Rachel, if FOX came up with a new scheme much like that suggested by the New Hampshire Republicans, and mix up the group, throw polling out, get credible candidates in, and if it takes you over two nights, I would think the people would watch that nationwide to do it. Otherwise, we`re going to have to go with my buddy Roger Simon`s idea of a big Hollywood Squares box, 27 candidates, and you take them -- you take them from city to city for the whole campaign season. MADDOW: And they all compete to see who can be Bruce Vilanch. I love it. Joseph McQuaid, publisher -- MCQUAID: Well, I`m -- MADDOW: Go ahead, sir. MCQUAID: No, no, I`m older than you. For me, it`s Paul Lynde in center square. MADDOW: That`s fair enough. Mr. McQuaid, publisher of "The New Hampshire Union Leader", honestly, I could talk to you all night. I hope you`ll come back and talk to us again. I think this is a fascinating fight that you picked and I think you`re going to win it, sir. Thanks for being with us tonight. MCQUAID: Well, thank you very much. Thanks for the invite. MADDOW: I appreciate it. That`s great. I love it. I love -- A, I love New Hampshire. B, I love New Hampshire politics. And, C, I love the way they will not take anything from anybody. I love it. I just absolutely love it. There`s no way the RNC and FOX are going to win this, not against New Hampshire. No way. We`ll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Some words are not all that translatable. For example, the word Cwtch. Cwtch rhymes with butch, thank you very much. Cwtch comes from Wales, and the Welsch love this untranslatable word that they`re happy to try to explain it for outsiders so other people might start using the untranslatable word, too. Cwitch, as close as I can explain it, basically means hug, or cuddle or snuggle. Cwtch is hard to define exactly but when you need one, you know it. Today in Wales a timely cwtch got handed out and it was on tape. It makes everything make sense and that tape, that story is ahead. Please stay tuned for that. It is truly amazing. Stay with us. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Tamir Rice was killed the week before Thanksgiving last year. He was 12 years old and had been playing with pellet gun in a Cleveland park on a snowy day when police rolled up and shot him in a blink in less than three seconds. And in a nearly seven months since that shooting, there has been no decision on whether or not to charge those officers and Tamir Rice`s death. But this week, eight people, eight regular people, civilians in Cleveland took the matter directly to a local judge. Ohio law allows ordinary citizens to petition a drug for an arrest warrant. It`s a rarely used thing but you can do it. And these local citizens in Cleveland asked the judge to ask whether the evidence in the Tamir Rice case justified bringing serious charges in this case. They did that on Tuesday. This afternoon, that Cleveland City judge issued his ruling. He said he was, quote, "thunderstruck" by how quickly this event turned deadly. He also said, crucially, that he believes there is probable cause to charge the shooting officer with murder and both officers on the scene with negligent homicide and dereliction of duty. He said prosecutors should file criminal complaints and that he would tell them so. Now, it`s important to note these officers haven`t been charged. The judge`s opinion is not binding on the prosecutors. But obviously, this does crank up the pressure for prosecutors to reach a resolution in this case. The county prosecutor`s office tonight said they will bring this case to a grand jury, as they do with all cases involving police use of force. They told us the case will need more investigation. They said they are not setting timetables. But with this judge`s opinion today, saying charges should be brought and probable cause exists, the stakes got yet higher in the case of 12- year-old Tamir Rice. Watch this space. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Macy, meet the queen. Queen, meet Macy. Macy is 6-year-old girl in Wales. Today on a royal visit, Queen Elizabeth and Macy met. Macy was waiting for the queen in a lovely traditional Welsh dress so she could give the queen a bouquet of flowers. Macy got up really, really early. She got dressed all nice. She had to wait for the queen to show up. And at the right moment, she has to hand over the flowers and remember to curtsy properly. It`s a very high stress thing, but she does it. She does it perfectly. She does it great. And then something comes out of left field. (VIDEO CLIP PLAYS) MADDOW: Oh, god. She did so well. She was just a little too close to that soldier. Local press reports the soldier turned around and apologized profusely as soon as he was allowed to, but apparently you cannot just stop saluting the queen in the middle of it even if you hit a girl in the face on the upswing of your salute. Macy`s family`s reaction is priceless, right? One of them is shocked. The other completely loses it. It turns out Macy is fine. She went to her aunt for a cwtch which in Welsh means she got a cuddly hug that made her feel safe. And, yes, I would want one of those too because sometimes the cost of misjudging the tiniest thing can be very, very high. All right. Ready for the metaphor? Today in the U.S. House of Representatives, Speaker John Boehner began the tight rope walk that he hopes will result in a giant 12-nation Pacific trade deal moving ahead. House Democrats generally hate this thing. But even Republicans generally like it, they can`t get all their troops in line to pass it because President Obama likes it too -- ew, cooties. So, the Republicans have to get some Democrats onboard. But as John Boehner tries to cobble together enough votes, he has a considerable opposite force working against him. Senator Elizabeth Warren has been leading the fight against the trade deal for months. She almost derailed it in the Senate. And today, as John Boehner is painstakingly constructing this fragile deal in the House, Elizabeth Warren sent out a call asking everyone to call their member of Congress and urge them to vote no. This whole thing is so precarious, a flood of calls from Senator Warren`s wing of the party on the big eve of the big vote could be enough to upset Speaker Boehner`s apple cart. They need Democrats. Nobody knows if the voters are there for this trade deal. It really just takes one small thing to make everything to wrong. The tiniest misjudgment, just a couple of inches either way, and whap! House Republicans need 217 votes on this series of bill that they`re going to move this trade deal forward. Speaker Boehner called the first of these many votes this afternoon. He needed 217, he got 217. They made it but boy, is it close. They can`t afford to lose a single vote. Nobody knows if this is going to go down in flames in the House when the real show starts tomorrow. The tiniest thing could make the difference and if it does, somebody is seriously going to need a cwtch. That does it for us tonight. We`ll see you again tomorrow. Now, it`s time for "THE LAST WORD". Ari Melber is sitting in for Lawrence tonight. Good evening, Ari. THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END