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The Rachel Maddow Show, Transcript 10/29/15

Guests: Marc Caputo, Nicolle Wallace

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, my friend. HAYES: You bet. MADDOW: And thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. When Jeb Bush announced in June he was going to be running for president, he gave -- you may remember, it was a big, joyful, high-energy speech in Miami in front of a big diverse crowd. He gave part of the speech in Spanish. He, of course, gave most of the speech in English. But when he got to the part he was actually announce, saying directly he would be running for president, he kind of -- he kind of excited himself. Do you remember? He gave a little hoot. A little hooting noise. And it was nice. It was like he was legitimately thrilled to be announcing he was running and to have everybody applaud him for that announcement. It was exciting in the moment. He was clearly excited. And he went "hoot", like a little happy owl. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JEB BUSH (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I`m a candidate for president of the United States of America. (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE) Whoo. Whoo. Whoo. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Whoo. Jeb Bush, kind of whoo, crowed out loud, in joyful little noise, at the exact moment he announced he was running for president. And as Jeb Bush has continued running for president, his surprising talent and proclivity for making interesting little noises has been one of the fun and unpredictable small things about covering him as a candidate. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BUSH: That`ll light up the Twitter. (LAUGHTER) The Twitter universe. There`s some heads exploding right now. I can feel it. Like doo doo, doo, doo, doo, doo. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: That was the noise of the Twitter. There was also the noise of the anger. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BUSH: Politically, we`re going to win when we`re big enough domestic and big and broad rather than err, just angry all the time. Errr. Errrr. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: There`s a lot that hasn`t gone right with the Jeb Bush campaign. It feels ill-fated or star crossed or mistimed or something, sort of has even from the beginning. But for all that is wrong with the campaign the weird little noises thing he does, it does make it kind of fun to cover him. And he is still doing it. He is still even now unveiling new unexpected noises. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REPORTER: Speaking of which, you know, the whispering campaign has already started, Bush is falling is part -- BUSH: Blah, blah, blah, blah. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: It was Jeb Bush speaking on Saturday in South Carolina, and then he tried it again with a slightly different pronunciation. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REPORTER: You know what they`re saying out there. BUSH: Blah, blah, blah. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Blah, blah. Whatever you think about whether or not Jeb Bush has any shot of being the next president of the United States or whether that would be a good thing or a bad thing, there is one thing he has proven he can do better than anybody else who was even trying for the job. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BUSH: Doo, doo, doo, doo, doo, doo. Whoo. Err, errr. Blah, blah, blah, blah. Blah, blah, blah. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: If Jeb Bush does drop out of the race, admit, it you will miss the unexpected noises. I mean, the other campaigns offer a lot of suspense and sometimes some weirdness, but nobody else leaves you wondering if at some point they`re going to go boo-da-boo-da-boo in the middle of their sentences and blah, blah, blah. That`s part of what it`s meant to cover Jeb Bush. This was Texas over this past weekend. The strongest hurricane ever recorded in the known history of hurricanes smacked into the Pacific coast of Mexico this weekend. And the strength of that hurricane was quickly dissipated by the inland mountains in Mexico. But it was a really strong storm, and a big storm. And the remnants of Hurricane Patricia ended up moving north and just lashing Texas with huge amounts of rain overt course of this weekend. It led to dangerous flooding in some places. At one point, it derailed a train on Saturday. And this weekend, as Jeb Bush kept up his busy schedule of campaign appearance, that was where we got the blah, blah, blah surprise in South Carolina, as Jeb Bush kept campaigning this weekend, his family met together in Texas. They convened what they called a family celebration for Bush campaign donors in Houston. It was supposed to happen at the lovely Houston home of former President George H.W. Bush and his wife Barbara, the former first lady. And, of course, that would have been really nice and really nostalgic for everybody but there was all that darn rain, that huge storm that flooded huge parts of Texas and that forced the whole gathering inside. They ended up having to share space at a downtown Hilton with a local quilting convention. Even if it had not rained so hard, though, even if they had not had to move the whole thing to that dreary hotel ballroom, it seems like calling it a celebration was really never going to be enough to get Bush donors this past weekend into a celebratory mood. "The Washington Post" on Friday ran a bunch of blind quotes from Bush donors that were just absolutely devastating. This is how the post put it. Quote, "One Bush fund-raiser who requested anonymity to speak freely said, it feels very much like a death spiral, and it breaks my heart. I don`t know anyone who wants to reinvest now." And by reinvest, that means people who have previously donated to Jeb Bush don`t want to donate to him again. Then the donor says this, quote, "I wouldn`t be shocked in 60 days from now if he wasn`t even in the race." And again, this isn`t a critic. This is an anonymous observer. This is a Jeb Bush fund-raiser, somebody who is giving money to the campaign and trying to get other people to give money to the campaign as well. So, heading into that donors event this weekend, the Jeb Bush campaign had just given everybody some bad news. The campaign had announced a 40 percent reduction in the Jeb Bush campaign payroll. That includes across-the-board pay cuts for staffing, cutting his headquarter staff and cutting his spending on travel and on consultants and that dramatic payroll cut was actually the second one that the Bush campaign has gone through. So, it`s probably the second pay cut for a lot of Bush campaign staff and that, of course, has to be profoundly demoralizing for the Bush campaign staff. I think in a sort of parallel universe in which things were going better for Jeb Bush, even headlines like that about those drastic cuts inside the Bush campaign operation, they could have been spun as something positive about how thrifty Jeb Bush was being and how lean and mean his operation was and the agility with which he could manage the hard-won money that his donors were entrusting to his campaign. But none of that happened. Instead, the payroll cuts led to questions like -- and headlines like these: "Can Jeb stop the implosion?" "Jeb Bush expresses despair." In, this rather devastating one in the foreground here, "Bush family gathers in Texas to rescue Jeb." It also led to some unkind criticism on the campaign trail as to why exactly governor Bush was going out of the way to do this event with his brother and his dad and his mom at this particularly difficult point in his campaign. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Think of this -- here`s a guy, here`s a guy wants to run our country, and he can`t even run his own campaign. No, think of it. And you know what? He`s cutting back big. He`s cutting back 40 percent. So, Bush has no money. He`s cutting. He`s meeting today with mommy and daddy. And they`re working on their campaign. They`re working. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: With 40 percent payroll cut for the whole campaign, with all of the terrible press, with even their donors telling the press they think the campaign is over and he`ll be out in 60 days, with that kind of thing ringing in their ears, yes, the Bush family convened their donors this weekend, in the middle of that epic storm, for what was either going to be the start of Jeb Bush for President 2.0, some optimistic relaunch and a restart and a rethinking of his campaign. It was either going to be that or it was basically going to be a good-bye party. It was going to be the beginning of the end. And that is how they started this week. That was this past weekend. That was how this week started for what was supposed to be the prohibitive front-running presidential campaign of 2016. He was supposed to be the inevitable nominee. That`s how this week started for him. And then last night happened. Did you watch last night`s debate? It`s OK if you didn`t. There`s going to be a lot of these things. This was not the most entertaining one. It was not the most riveting. But I think a case can be made this was the most politically important one yet. And even though there was one sharp exchange between Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush and there was a weird thing about fantasy football where Jeb Bush gave a sort of human answer and then Chris Christie screamed about it in a very different tone and people thought that didn`t look for Jeb -- didn`t look good for Jeb compared to Chris Christie, I have to say I think I might differ from the rest of the commentariat in believing neither of those individual exchanges was deadly. I mean, neither one of them was good but neither one of them was instant death. Neither one of them was oops, right? Neither one in isolation explains how politically important last night`s debate was. The reason last night`s debate was I think the most important moment in the political campaign yet is because of the uniformity, the ideological heterogeneity, the breadth and the ubiquity of the consensus that Jeb Bush had been on life support heading into this debate and last night, that debate pulled the plug on his life support machine and he`s now politically dead. I don`t want to just say that as a shot across the bow. I want you to bear with me now because I want to show you what I mean. I want to show you this instead of just saying it. I want to show you what this looks like today in quantity because the quantity matters. Nothing in politics, particularly in partisan politics, is ever this agreed to. Nothing is ever this unanimous. But this is unanimous. Just look, "Time" magazine. How Jeb Bush lost debate., "Yeah, Jeb Bush is probably toast." "The Boston Globe", "The beginning of the end for Jeb." Conservative blog RedState, "Dear Jeb Bush, it`s time to take your campaign out back and shoot it." The syndicated column by the founder of RedState, "Jeb Bush is not the man for this presidential season.", "Jeb Bush`s stunning televised implosion." BuzzFeed, "Jeb Bush continues death spiral at GOP debate." "The Chicago Tribune, "GOP debate helps Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio but leaves Jeb Bush in trouble." "The Weekly Standard." "Jeb`s dead." "The National Review," "Jeb finds himself on the ropes." "The Daily Caller," "It`s time for Jeb Bush to call it quits." "New York Magazine", "The instant and widely acknowledged death of Bush`s hopes.", "Jeb died on that stage." "The New Republic," "This might have been Jeb`s Waterloo, the moment when he lost everything once and for all." Bloomberg News, "Bush`s big bomb." "It was even worse than it looked, a fundamental test and Bush failed it badly." That`s left, right and center. That`s everything. I mean, in partisan politics when it comes to the subjective perception of a candidate`s success or failure, it`s always a hung jury, right? I mean, there`s always somebody who dissents or sees it differently. You never get across the spectrum universal agreement. But that is the rare bird that we have discovered today. And the one thing that didn`t change between yesterday and today, of course, is that Jeb Bush`s super PAC is still sitting on $100 million. But money can`t buy you love and it can`t make you a better candidate and it can`t probably reverse universal public and political opinion. So, now, there`s this interesting question. Whatever else you think about how well Jeb Bush has been campaigning and how much the political press may or may not be just a lot of blah, blah, blah, blah, as the governor would say, now there is this very interesting question to ask about what`s going on here, which is this -- how much does the perception that he is politically dead affect the reality of whether or not he really is? Is that an insurmountable perception? Joining us now is Marc Caputo, senior writer for "Politico", who before that was a long-time "Miami Herald" political writer. Mr. Caputo, it`s really nice to have you here. Thanks for being here. MARC CAPUTO, POLITICO SENIOR WRITER: Thanks. I thought my dad is here. He`s Mr. Caputo. Please -- MADDOW: Oh, fair enough. You can call me anything you want. I answer to hey you on a regular occasion. Let me ask you that question I guess broadly and also specifically about Jeb Bush. Is perception reality for a candidate like this? Is the perception he`s dying as good as him being dead? CAPUTO: Well, he`s certainly getting there. It`s like that scene in Monty Python`s "holy grail" where the old man says "not dead yet" and somebody finally clubs him and kills him. I think Jeb Bush is -- he`s heading in that territory. There is one group of people who think Jeb Bush still has a lot of life in him and that`s the few people in the Jeb Bush campaign who are pretty well-paid to push that message. But otherwise, you`re generally finding across the board, again, this really rare uniform opinion whether it`s left, right, or center that he did himself no favors. And there`s an added bit of drama here that`s just really difficult for the news media to pass up, which is the fact that he basically handed the sword to kill himself to his former protege Marco Rubio by deciding to engage him on an issue that seemed to have relatively little legs or few legs and then Rubio rope-a-dopes and kind of whacked him in the jaw with it and after it was done, Bush had very little to say. In the entire debate, he had less to say in that debate than anyone else in the debate. MADDOW: It is incredible that time of possession statistic that he ended up last. I mean, some counts have Rand Paul less than him, but most of them have Jeb Bush with the least speaking time of all. CAPUTO: He got cold-cocked. I mean, he got hit kind of so hard he went back into his corner and then he kind of never came out. MADDOW: It is a weird strategic decision too, if you think about what`s been going on with the rest of the field. I mean, there is a very clear top tier of candidates, right, which is Donald Trump and Ben Carson. They`ve done great and they don`t attack each other. I don`t know why in that dynamic you would think as a second-tier candidate what I`d really try to do is try to knock out the other guy next to me in the second tier. It seems like a rookie miscalculation. CAPUTO: Well, yes. And it`s so odd that we start to default to the idea that this is personal. A lot of people who surround Jeb Bush were Marco Rubio supporters. And Marco Rubio came up in that milieu in the Republican Party. Some of these people backed Charlie Crist in 2010 and said that Marco Rubio had absolutely no prayer in that Senate race, and what he did is he proved them wrong. In fact, he chased Charlie Crist out of the Republican Party and then beat him in the general election. And then this go-around a lot of those same people, well, almost all of them are in Jeb Bush world. And they`re saying oh, Jeb is different than Charlie. And it`s true, Jeb Bush is a different person, different politician than Charlie Crist. He is a good and solid Republican and his record shows that. But the reality is Jeb Bush`s people and Jeb Bush`s messaging in macro looks exactly like the same sort of denial campaign that Charlie Crist was waging. And Marco Rubio tap-danced around Charlie Crist. And again, last night, he did it to Jeb Bush. He basically said to Jeb, we all know why you`re doing this, you`re desperate. MADDOW: That`s exactly right. CAPUTO: He was at least nicer than that because Rubio still wants to come across as the hopeful positive hopey changey guy and he was effective at doing that. And when Rubio finished one of his salvos, the crowd applauded. And there`s that added optical or audio element to the fact Rubio scored, which is the support of the crowd. And Jeb didn`t have it, and Marco did. You`re also seeing that now in the polling as well. MADDOW: It does feel wills nobody rooting for him who`s not paid to be rooting for him at least in public which can hurt. Marc Caputo, political writer for "Politico", long-time political reporter, it`s great to have you here tonight. Thanks for being with us. CAPUTO: Thank you for having me. I appreciate it. MADDOW: I will say one of the interesting things that happened tonight is that a Jeb Bush strategy book got leaked tonight. "U.S. News & World Report" tonight published a more than 100-page PowerPoint presentation that the Jeb Bush folks apparently showed to their donors and their supporters this weekend at that event in Houston. It`s hard to believe that that leak was accidental since that was 100 and-some-odd pages of trying to convince the people in that room and now everybody who reads the Internet that Jeb Bush really can do it. Convenient leaks. That part of the campaign. I`ll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: The first Republican debate broke all audience records, 24 million people watched the first debate. Second Republican debate did almost the same number, 23 million people watched. Last night`s third Republican debate didn`t do as big a number. Still a giant broadcast, but expectations were so high after the first two debates, 24 and 23 million people, that it weirdly seems like news that last night`s debate had only 14 million people tuning in. I mean, everybody thought the Republican debates would be blockbuster all this year for obvious reasons and the Democratic debates would be a comparative snooze-fest. But last night`s Republican debate actually had a smaller audience than the Democratic debate did. And perhaps more importantly, the folks at bad lip reading have finally finished their own bad lip reading version of that first Democratic debate in all its absurd glory. Let me just counsel you, friends. Don`t be offended by this. Just don`t. Just suspend all offense and let this wash over you. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anderson, I`m all disappointed. I spent $5 on a pinata and I wanted to have that bull and then they bring me this weird firebird and set it up there. I said, hey, you better give me if or I`ll shove somebody. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, everyone, do you know him? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not at all. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Okay. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jimmy, I`m sure you`ll make a friend someday. A friend that doesn`t treat you like human waste. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Jimmy. Shush, jimmy. OK? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On to the next question. Should I get a scooter? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hey, the white boy thinks it`s scooter time. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The ride`s going to be scary, you know, Anderson, because it`s spring and I don`t know where you`re going to be riding. Mainly to the cleaners. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, right. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cool. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Bad lip reading. I love you so much. Still ahead tonight, we have more bad lip reading to come. And some news now about how the whole debate process might be about to blow up on the Republican side. Stay with us. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This woman makes dynamite beans. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I do. Pinto. Pinto. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. (END VIDEO CLIP) (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: At last night`s Republican debate, in his very first answer, the first time he had a chance to speak, Senator Rand Paul made a solemn pledge. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) SEN. RAND PAUL (R-KY), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Now on the floor of the Congress the Washington establishment from both parties puts forward a bill that will explode the deficit. It allows President Obama to borrow unlimited amounts of money. I will stand firm. I will spend every ounce of energy to stop it. I will begin tomorrow to filibuster it. And I ask everyone in America to call Congress tomorrow and say enough`s enough, no more debt. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Wow. I will spend every ounce of energy to stop this budget deal starting tomorrow. Rand Paul pledging he would march back to Washington and filibuster this budget deal. One problem: he was actually already too late to filibuster the budget deal. It was already on its way toward a vote in the Senate. That vote scheduled to begin about 1:00 in the morning tonight, no matter what Rand Paul did. But hey, OK. So, he can`t filibuster the budget deal. But, of course, he`s running for president. So that doesn`t mean anything was going to stop him from fake filibustering the deal. Under the rules, he could in fact speak for hours and hours and hours even though it wouldn`t be a real filibuster. He could take up all the time leading up to that 1:00 a.m. vote by refusing to yield the floor. And so, this afternoon just before 3:00, we got word that Senator Paul would arise to begin his marathon fake filibuster. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) PAUL: We`re in the middle of a filibuster. This filibuster will go on till about 1:00 in the morning and then we will find out who the true conservatives in this town are. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Whoo. Let her rip. Rand Paul, not going to take the vote until 1:00 a.m., we`re in the middle of a fake filibuster, do your thing. Rand Paul started round 3:00 and his filibuster went for just under 19 minutes it turns out. That was it. 18 minutes and-some-odd seconds. We don`t know really what happened there. But he had until 1:00 a.m., he took 19 minutes. Not much of a fake filibuster. Still, though, 19 minutes is more than three times the amount of talking time he got at last night`s debate. Rand Paul did not manage to have any memorable moments last night at all in the few minutes that he got, but despite that I think admittedly lackluster performance and his abandoned less than half an hour non-filibuster today, there is some real drama to Rand Paul`s candidacy right now that other candidates really don`t have. Marco Rubio may be having trouble getting around to voting as senator. Jeb Bush tried to hit him last night. His home state paper that endorsed him hit him for that as well. Today, Harry Reid joined on that pile-on and said Marco Rubio should quit the Senate because he hates being senator so much he never votes. Marco`s Rubio`s got a little trouble being a senator and a presidential candidate at the same time. Rand Paul is in a whole different vote, though. Marco Rubio isn`t running for re-election to the Senate. So, it`s sort of OK to him if you think he`s a terrible senator. He`s not running to be re-elected to the Senate at the same time he`s running for president. Rand Paul is. And that has resulted in there being a norm of pressure on him that nobody else has to cope with. The fact that him continuing his long shot presidential campaign is potentially putting in jeopardy something that he has that the Republican Party desperately wants to keep. And now, that pressure is getting more intense because in Rand Paul`s home state, in Kentucky, voters in Kentucky are going to the polls on Tuesday. They vote next week. They`re having an off-year election this year in 2015 and the new polls just out in Kentucky make it look like Democrats could do great in those elections next week. It looks like the Democratic candidate is on track to win the governor`s race in Kentucky and importantly there`s one other down-ticket race, which is the auditor`s race, which is really relevant to Rand Paul. The reason that down-ticket race is important is basically everyone thinks this guy, the state auditor, Adam Edelen, is the Democrat who is likely to beat Rand Paul for his Senate seat next November if he chooses to challenge rand fall for that Senate seat. Adam Edelen is up for reelection as auditor this Tuesday. The Rand Paul political machine has been trying to defeat him by backing his Republican opponent. But it looks like Adam Edelen is not going to get knocked out. I mean, the polls could be wrong, anything could happen. But he`s up eight points just five days before Election Day. So, Rand Paul. Rand Paul has been under pressure for weeks from the Republican Party in his home state and nationwide to give up his long shot White House bid so he can focus on trying to keep his Senate seat. I mean, if the Democrats do sweep the statewide races in Kentucky on Tuesday, which seems possible, expect that pressure on Rand Paul to quit the presidential race to increase exponentially. I mean, I know the presidential race is much more of an area of focus, but Republicans really do face the very real prospect of losing the United States Senate to the Democrats next year. They cannot afford to lose Rand Paul`s seat. And that is creating some legitimate drama around what is otherwise a totally flat-lined presidential campaign from Senator Paul. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: (AUDIO GAP) never go wrong attacking the media. Last night was a tent revival celebrating and exuberantly practicing that particular faith. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: It`s not a very nicely asked question the way you say that. SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The questions that have been asked so far in this debate illustrate why the American people don`t trust the media. (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE) This is not a cage match. SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You just listed a litany of discredited attacks from Democrats and my political opponents and I`m not going to waste 60 seconds detailing them all. CRUZ: And, Carl, I`m not finished yet. The contrast with the Democratic debate where every fawning question from the media was which of you is more handsome and wise. RUBIO: Democrats have the ultimate super PAC, it`s called the mainstream media. It`s actually evidence of the bias that exists in the American media today. PAUL: What are the rules on who gets to follow up? How do we decide who gets to follow up? I`ve seen plenty of other people follow up. GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We`re talking about fantasy football? (APPLAUSE) Enough on fantasy football. Let people play. Who cares? RUBIO: So this is another example of the double standard that exists in this country between the mainstream media and the conservative movement. TRUMP: Such a nasty -- such a nasty question. CHRISTIE: John? Do you want me to answer or you want to answer? Because I`ve got to tell you the truth: even in New Jersey what you`re doing is called rude. MODERATOR: Does that not speak to your vetting process or judgment in any way? BEN CARSON (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: No. It speaks to the fact that I don`t know -- (BOOS) CARSON: See? They know. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: You yell at the media and the moderators for long enough, eventually the audience learns to follow along with that. Stay with us. More ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Behold the bad lip reading version of the Democratic candidates` debate. This is not the debate from last night. This is the Dems. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor O`Malley, during birth how do babies exit the mother`s body? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wait. So the babies come out somehow, but I`ve just got to think how. It`s a simple question. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where do babies come out of the mommies? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe that most come, I would say that there was a way that they move from the interior to the -- up into the uvula -- can I help you? I don`t like how she stares. It`s super creepy. And I think I can say where babies came from without you blinking at me. I`m serious. You need to stop. OK? Have fun in staring class. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have a foam finger. You ready? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ah. Secretary Clinton just activated a noun challenge. Senator Sanders, you have 13 seconds to list ten nouns. Starting now. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Grizzly. Cute squirrel. Bugs. Coffin. Pig. Smoothie. Ghost. Heavy kid. Come on, Bernie, think. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ooh. Time`s up for Colonel Sanders. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, look, I see a dead person. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, really? Where? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He`s got your eyes. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You shouldn`t have said that. Golly jeepers. There`s no doubt about it. I`d like to start with a vacant face. Hmm, hmm, hmm. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anderson, I`ve got more. Bench, match, performer, poll me. Gremlin, chocolate, cinnamon. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bernie, that game`s over. Remember? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s that? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We just did this. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`ll punch ya. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: I`ll punch ya. I love it too much and I know you know I love it too much. But just one more. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anderson, I need to say my poem. I went trespassing in the forest to see if it jumps. The monkey peeped the rhino and I had to bounce. Old hot dogs are juicy enough to drink. I love these beans. Destroy the mysteries and then go fight Chewbacca. (APPLAUSE) (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Go fight Chewbacca. The triumph of bad lip reading. America, we wouldn`t be the same without them. National treasure. That Democratic debate, I should tell you, actually got a larger audience than the Republican debate last night. Which ought to be politically impossible this year given the drama on the Republican side compared to the calm and friendly little group on the Democratic side. But last night`s Republican debate actually did have a smaller audience than the Dems. And something to keep an eye on for the next Republican debate. Right now under the somewhat blurry standards that the Fox Business Channel has announced for how to qualify for that next debate on November 10th, right now, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is not slated to be allowed on stage. Right now, under their current polling rules as best as we can discern them, he is slated to be at the kids` table. John Kasich, I should say, is also right on the line of not making it. But Chris Christie doesn`t make it. That said, maybe that`s all going to change. Because after a whole night of all the Republican candidates complaining about the media and yelling at the moderators from CNBC, today, the Republicans apparently started considering blowing up their whole debate process while it is already in progress. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CARSON: Debates are supposed to be established to help the people get to know the candidates and get to know what`s behind them and what their thinking process is, what their philosophy is. And what it`s turned into is a gotcha. That`s silly. And that`s not really helpful for anybody. I`ve asked my staff to reach out to the other campaigns, to talk about a change in format. REPORTER: Have you reached out specifically to Donald Trump or to his campaign about this, and what changes specifically are you asking for going forward? CARSON: Well, we`ll be reaching out to all the campaigns, everybody that was on that stage. And specific things we`re looking for are first of all, moderators who are interested in actually getting the facts and not in gotcha questions. And we`re looking for an opportunity to actually be able to explain what your program is, what your philosophy for leadership is. And then be questioned about it. REPORTER: So longer answers? CARSON: Yes. Longer statements and answers to questions. REPORTER: Dr. Carson, are you trying to tell us that you may not participate in future debates if the formats are not changed, or is this something that you`d like to have a conversation about, but you`ll participate even if the format remains largely as it already has been? CARSON: Well, we will always have the conversation first. I don`t see any reason whatever right now to be posturing. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: Yes, certainly none of this berating the media and the moderators could be posturing. But tonight, just in the past few minutes is reporting, this has just happened since we`ve been on the air, that the revolt is well and truly under way. reporting tonight in the 9:00 hour that Republican presidential campaigns are planning to gather in D.C. on Sunday night to plot how to alter their party`s debate process. They have not invited to their meeting anybody from the Republican Party. Today, many of the campaigns told "Politico" that the RNC has failed to take their concerns about debates into account, they`ve decided it`s time to discuss among themselves how the next debate should be structured, they are no longer going to leave it up to the RNC. It`s apparently being spearheaded by members of the campaigns of Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Bobby Jindal and Lindsey Graham, piping in from the kids` table, but they apparently have commitments to attend from not only those campaigns but the campaigns of Rand Paul, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, Marco Rubio, and Carly Fiorina and say they`re reaching out to the evident rest of them too. If you guys need Jim Gilmore`s number I`ve got. Joining us is Nicolle Wallace, former adviser to the McCain-Palin campaign. She also once worked for Jeb Bush. Nicolle, it`s good to have you here. NICOLLE WALLACE, FORMER PRESS SECRETARY TO GOV. JEB BUSH: It`s really good you showed Hillary Clinton saying pinto beans. Because it got me over the way you started the show with Jeb Bush. MADDOW: Pinto, pinto. WALLACE: Let me be the one to say tonight, and I don`t want to spend any more time on this, but there`s a long way to go. Anything could happen. MADDOW: So unless people stop giving you money -- WALLACE: But you asked the right question. (CROSSTALK) WALLACE: So, we`ll see. And I know you`ll report it out and not just declare it. MADDOW: I think it`s an interesting question. The unanimity of the opinion that he`s dead in the water is -- it sort of creates its own weather. WALLACE: And what I think is unanimous is he had a bad night. I think it`s way too early to -- I mean, the Republican race, two front- runners are Ben Carson and Donald Trump. It really anything can still happen. MADDOW: He didn`t have a terrible night on the debate stage I think. I know I defer from other pundits. People thought he totally tanked. I don`t think any of his bad moments were like a "you`re no Jack Kennedy". WALLACE: They weren`t fatal from a performance stand point, but they were fatal in terms of the momentum of his campaign. MADDOW: That`s right. WALLACE: He needed a turnaround moment, and he didn`t -- he needed to make a moment and he didn`t make a moment. But I worked for him. He`s a guy, he has to get over the part that the only part of his job he likes is the nerdy wonky policymaking part. He has to accept that the only way you get to make policy that affects the country and the world is by sort of stepping up the performance -- MADDOW: Maybe he`d be a better policy adviser than president. WALLACE: Well, people are going to rule on this. It won`t be decided by any quacking people on television. He`s got to get in front of others and improve the performance. MADDOW: In front of donors too. WALLACE: Of course. MADDOW: Let me ask you about this news tonight not from the RNC but from the campaign -- WALLACE: I keep thinking pinto beans. MADDOW: Pinto. Fight Chewbacca. The campaigns think that the debates are such a disaster that they need to take over, box out the RNC, tell the RNC we don`t care about your rules, your sponsored debates, all this stuff, it doesn`t matter if none of us go along with it, we`re going to stop -- are things so bad in the debate process that this should be happening? WALLACE: Here`s my take. The debate was a great moment for the Republican field because they stood united against -- MADDOW: The terrible media. WALLACE: Not the terrible -- the moderators stunk. And I know they`re your colleagues, you might not be able to say, that but that was a terribly moderated debate. And I would say you have three debates on the Democratic and Republican sides were fair. There were good moments, there were bad moments. But this -- MADDOW: It wasn`t unfair. It was aggressive to the point it made people uncomfortable. WALLACE: It was not perceived by any Republican as being a true fact-finding operation. MADDOW: Did it seem less wing? I mean, I just thought they didn`t like it. WALLACE: The moment of the night came from Ted Cruz who when he stood up and indicted the litany of questions from all moderators -- MADDOW: OK. Yes. Absolutely. Because attack the media always works. But wait, wait, wait. What question did he -- (CROSSTALK) MADDOW: No, no. He said -- he was asked a question about his opinion on the debt ceiling and what he thought should happen about that in Washington and he responded by saying, how dare you not ask those questions about the issues? WALLACE: My only point -- MADDOW: We did just ask you a question about an issue and instead you`re attacking us. That was just theater. WALLACE: But it had been building. If you`d watched the debate -- MADDOW: It had been building since the `70s. Come on. WALLACE: There`s three legs of the Republican rage machine, right? We`re mad, right? MADDOW: Right. WALLACE: And Democrats have some rage issues on their end. But one leg is feeling that the media is totally stacked against them. One leg is feeling that the Republican establishment, pundits like myself, we live in the Acela corridor and we`re clueless about tapping into the country. The third leg is feeling like government`s too big and Republicans have a problem. But Republicans animated that one leg, that feeling, that indictment of the media for being stacked and that unites Republicans and -- MADDOW: It`s always a great debate moment every time they do it. The question, though, if that`s the animating force right now and they think they can turn those applause lines into a better idea for the debate, what are they going to be come up with? They`re all going to be moderate bid Rush Limbaugh or Hugh Hewitt? WALLACE: The FOX News debate where -- (CROSSTALK) MADDOW: How were the FOX News moderators treated? WALLACE: They were bashed. So that`s the whole solution. MADDOW: Right. WALLACE: I think if there are specific things they want to change, I think Lindsey Graham obviously wants to make it out of that -- and he`s a great debater. Maybe he does -- you know, if they want to go and unite and try to change the rules of some of the debates, that`s fine. But I would contend the debates as they are not hurting the field. MADDOW: I agree. WALLACE: In some strange ways they`re bring them together. MADDOW: I agree. That`s why I think they`re going overthrow the RNC in the four days -- WALLACE: You`ve got a debate. Maybe you`re part the solution. Congratulations on your debate. MADDOW: Thank you very much. And, hey, Republican candidates. If you would like a moderator you could really beat up on, come on. Nicolle Wallace, MSNBC political analyst, former senior adviser to the McCain-Palin campaign -- you have all these titles. Thank you for be being here as the Republican who I must like fighting with. WALLACE: As big of a fan of the lip-sync than you, though. I could watch that all night. Pinto beans. Please play it one more time. MADDOW: Fight Chewbacca. We`ll be right back. WALLACE: Pinto beans, my favorite. Love that. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Every year on Halloween, my partner Susan gets the whole stuff, little white chocolate ghosts and they`re really delicious and everybody looks forward to it and I`ll wrap them in little package that says boo on it. I saved one for Nicolle Wallace because she was going to be here today and then I ate it. Nicolle, I`m terribly sorry. WALLACE: (INAUDIBLE) my life. MADDOW: Here`s my replacement present to you. Watch. WALLACE: Thank you. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This woman makes dynamite beans. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I do. Pinto. Pinto. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: I have nothing better to give you. That`s it. There you have it. WALLACE: Better that I`m going to see Pinto election day. MADDOW: Pinto Halloween. WALLACE: I`m going to make that my ring phone or something. MADDOW: Bo! WALLACE: Bo, I love it. Thank you, pinto beans. We`ll always have pinto beans. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MADDOW: Here`s a low profile thing to keep an eye on in the news that may become a very high profile thing in the news. Today, the Defense Department announced that they have just transferred another prisoner out of Guantanamo. They sent him back to his home country of Mauritania. This was a guy who`s been held at Guantanamo for 13 days. Never charged with a crime. He was actually cleared for release six years ago. Today, he was transferred him out and home. With this transfer and the transfer of another prisoner to Morocco last month, the population at Guantanamo is now down to 113. It`s growing smaller by the month. President Obama continues to insist he will have that prison empty by the time he leaves office, by hook or by crook. Guantanamo as an issue has not yet really popped either in congressional politics or on the presidential trail. But if these transfers continue a pace, expect that to change. We`ll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) (INAUDIBLE) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, there something you don`t see every day. (END VIDEO CLIP) MADDOW: It wasn`t the marshmallow man reeking havoc across Maryland and Pennsylvania yesterday. But it was close. It was this military length, this giant radar equipped air defense system broken loose from its mooring at the Aberdeen proving ground outside Baltimore and then it floated away off to Pennsylvania, dragging a cable that was more than a mile long and smacking that cable into power lines, knocking out power for 30,000 people. It`s interesting. A local tea party group in Maryland had been sounding the alarm 4 months about that limp, that giant military spying on people. Just this week, they`ve given a public talk about that military blimp being a zombie program. And then day after they gave that talk, look what happened to you can`t say nobody warned you, America. But now, on date two of the zombie blimp apocalypse, the story has gotten more interesting than it was before, if that`s even possible. In part, it`s more interesting because we still have no idea how or why this happened. We reached out to the North American Aerospace Command, aka NORAD, this afternoon, which is now investigating how the blimp got loose in the first place. NORAD told us there was no indication that something like this might be about to happen. They said to us that this was an anomaly -- yes. They told us the tether rope off somehow from the mooring station. It wasn`t the morning itself that failed. The mooring is apparently fine. But the tether came off it or broke somehow. Officials say there is no sign of any foul play. The blimp appears to just have gone rogue somehow, someway. They don`t understand. Either the tether snapped or it became untethered somehow. We don`t know. And the ordeal is not over yet. Because even though it came down in Pennsylvania after that two-state, slow-speed chase yesterday trailed by F- 16 fighter jets come even though it came down in Pennsylvania, it didn`t come all the way down. And so, today, continuing the theme of high tech equipment having very low-tech problems, this morning, the National Guard decided the best way to bring the blimp all the way down, to deflate it the rest of the way, to get the last bits of helium out of it so it would fall to the ground completely, they decided shoot it with guns. They fired 100 shots at this $235 million limp, which is full of very sensitive and very important government surveillance/radar stuff. Then, after shooting it to death, they rolled away part of it. They rolled away detail and say they will use a helicopter to try to pull the rest of it out of the blimp and its parts and trail and cable and stuff out of the trees where it remains stuck today after free-floating those hundreds of miles. For the record, I once wrote a book called "Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power." I did not mean it literally. But now, I`m not so sure who has the better power of accidental prediction. The Harford County, Maryland Tea Party, this week or me three years ago? But I`m willing to bet that this is not what either of us had in mind. That does it for us tonight. We`ll see you again tomorrow. Now, it`s time for "THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL". THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END