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Kanye West files TRANSCRIPT: 8/5/20, The ReidOut

Guests: Jena Griswold, Chokwe Lumumba, Cori Bush, Shermichael Singleton, Ben Jacobs

ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: That does it for THE BEAT tonight though. I`ll see  you back here hopefully if you join us tomorrow night at 6:00 p.m. Eastern.

Don`t go anywhere though, because "THE REIDOUT" with Joy Reid is up next.

JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: In his all-out assault on the integrity of our  elections, Donald Trump has made it clear who he thinks should be allowed  to cast ballots safely by mail in the middle of a deadly pandemic, no less.  Spoiler alert, it`s people who Trump thinks will help him win.

Today, the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit against the State of Nevada over  its new law that would send absentee ballots to ever active voter in the  state. That comes a day after he encouraged voters in Florida to vote by  mail, saying it`s totally safe and secure. But, apparently and  nonsensically, only in Florida.

In an interview this morning, Trump tied himself in knots trying to defend  the hypocrisy.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  You can`t do a mail-in vote.  Now, Florida is different in the sense that they`ve been doing it and  they`ve had two very good governors, frankly, and they have an  infrastructure that`s taken years to build. But Nevada, they start voting  very soon and he just threw it out there. And the other thing is the votes  don`t have to be counted or tabulated until seven days after November 3rd.

They plan to send these ballots to everybody that`s ever walked in the  State of Nevada. It will be a disaster.


REID:  Trump argued that it could be years until we know the results of the  election because of the delay but just (INAUDIBLE) tried before, which  would ultimately mean President Pelosi.

Now, of course, there is the obvious fact that Nevada`s governor is a  Democrat and Florida`s governor, Trump`s supplicant, Ron DeSantis, is a  Republican. But President Trump`s attitude towards mail-in voting in the  Nevada law is also elitist, as evidenced by his latest canard that absentee  voting is just fine, but universal vote by mail, not so much. Perhaps  because President Trump votes by mail in Florida, since he switched his  primary residence from New York to his vacation home at Mar-a-Lago, one of  his many residences, after he got mad at his home State of New York.

He`s repeatedly said that it`s okay for him because he lives at the White  House. It`s a literal way of saying it`s perfectly fine for our people to  vote by mail but not those people. It`s perfectly understandable that our  people can`t make it to their vacation homes in swing states to vote, but  those people, those people need to stand in line for hours in a pandemic.

Although today, he said the quiet part out loud again.


TRUMP:  Absentee is okay because you have to go through a process, Brian,  and you go through a process and you make a request, and they send it to  you, and you get it, and you fill it out and it`s a process and it`s a  smaller number.


REID:  Joining me now is Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold, her  state is one of five in the country that conducts all elections almost  entirely by mail, and Jason Johnson, Professor of Journalism and Politics  Morgan State University. Thank you both for being here.

I want to go to you first, Ms. Griswold. Talk about the Colorado system of  voting. When I was growing up there in Colorado, we voted standing in line,  et cetera. How long has Colorado been voting fully by mail and how much  horrific fraud has there been?

JENA GRISWOLD, COLORADO SECRETARY OF STATE:  Well, Joy, I am so glad to  tell you there is not horrific fraud. So that`s the first good piece of  advice, or the good news out of Colorado. And we`ve been voting by mail  since 2013. The legislature passed by vote by mail, and it was implemented  by my predecessor Republican Secretary of State Wayne Williams, and it  works.

The Colorado election model is very simple. You register to vote, you`re  sent a ballot, and then you return it, either through the mail at one of  the many drop boxes, or you could even go vote in person.

REID:  And so here is a question, right? The drop box thing is another  thing Donald Trump is suing another state over. The drop boxes, how are  they secured, how do you know that only each person has returned only one  ballot into the drop box, although everyone (ph) is mailed one ballot? But  just -- let`s just humor Trump. How would you know that only one person has  returned a ballot to the drop box?

GRISWOLD:  Well, we have a statewide voter registration system, where we  are checking when people vote. So we know exactly when Coloradoans vote. We  also have cameras filming drop boxes and chain of custody of all ballots.  And, by the way, Joy, we even have signature verification of our ballots  performed by bipartisan teams of election judges.

(INAUDIBLE), we just had our state primary. We set a turnout record, even  during the pandemic.

REID:  Yes.

And so, Jason, look, Colorado is not the only state that votes by mail.  Hawaii has managed to do it for many, many years. Oregon has managed to do  it. Utah has managed to do it. And elect Republicans, pretty every state  office, Washington State has managed to do it. All these states do it.

And just having worked on election campaigns in Florida, I can tell you  that people who mostly vote by mail, at least in my experience in  campaigns, is Republicans. So it seems to me a little off key for Donald  Trump to decide that this is the hill he wants to die on, that voting by  mail is bad, mostly Republicans and wealthy people and people with two and  three homes. That`s who votes by mail, and older people, seniors. That`s  his people.

JASON JOHNSON, PROFESSOR OF POLITICS AND JOURNALISM, MORGAN STATE  UNIVERSITY:  Yes. Joy, you would almost think that the president doesn`t  know what he`s talking about. He`s just a pathological liar, he wants to  create chaos so that people don`t vote. It could be that. Because, yes, you  talk to any local campaign person in Ohio, Pennsylvania, especially swing  states, and Democrats, they fear the mail-in vote because they know that  that`s coming from overseas, they know that tends to come from Republican  areas.

And as we have seen reports in Politico and other places, as the president  continues to spout this insane conspiracy theory that mail-in voting will  be nothing but terrible Democratic people and young people and everything  else like that, it`s actually discouraging Republican voters from wanting  to go out and vote. So this is not just a lie, it`s not just voter  suppression, but it`s suppressing the people that he wants to turn out.  It`s sheer lunacy on every level.

REID:  Well, I mean, I can remember elections where the early vote, which  is where black people disproportionately vote, standing in line for early  vote, that number looked really good on election night. You know, this  happened in `04. But then, once the absentees started to pour in, a lot of  those are military voters, a lot of those, again, snow bird-type (ph)  voters, older voters, those can overwhelm and sometimes push the election  toward Republican. So it is strange for Donald Trump to choose this hill.

Let me play for you, Jason, this is Donald Trump talking about President  Obama`s eulogy for John Lewis, whose life work was the right to vote.


TRUMP:  I thought it was a terrible speech. It was an angry speech. I  thought his speech the other day at the funeral was a terrible, terrible  representation of what our country is all about.


REID:  I just wonder what you think he thinks our country is all about.  Because I thought that voting and the right to vote is sort baked into what  we`re supposed to be about, and the idea that President Obama would ever be  angry is funny. I find that funny. I just imagine if Malia and Sasha had  jumped on the furniture in the White House, he would have said, Malia  Obama, Malia -- he`s not --

JOHNSON:  Key and Peele literally had to do a sketch called Obama`s Anger  Translator, okay? This is not a guy who gets angry on a regular basis. But  I would go further. I don`t even know if you quiz Donald Trump if he  remembered who the funeral was for, because he said he doesn`t remember  John Lewis because he didn`t show up to his inauguration.

So this is a typical projection of this president. He has not been  encouraged or invited to any state funerals, to any passing of George Bush  or John Lewis or John McCain. He`s basically been blocked out of every  single club for every single statesman this country has had since he`s been  in office. So, of course, he`s saying it`s an angry because that`s a  projection of how he feels, but again, he can`t get into the club.

REID:  Yes, he`s angry at President Obama because he`s popular and he did  really well as president.

Ms. Griswold, I want to come back to you just on the way this election  looks going forward. Do you anticipate it being more chaotic than usual? We  know the mails are being slowed down, that there`s some tinkering going on  with things like that, that there`s some gamesmanship going on among  Republicans. Do you expect this election in Colorado to be the norm, what  you`re used to in a very -- in an election where a lot of people want to  turn out, or do you think will be more chaotic than usual? And if you think  it will be chaotic, what can you do about it?

GRISWOLD:  Well, I expect us to continue to have just fantastic elections  in Colorado because we have a model that works. It includes in-person  voting, early voting, online voter registration, and mailing a ballot to  every voter.

But I do have concerns as we see the president lie time and time again  about vote by mail and an attempt to undermine our democracy. That should  be concerning to everyone. And the fact that he said that it was okay for  Republican governors to have vote by mail systems but not everyone else  shows his true colors. He`s a partisan, trying to use his rhetoric to win  his seat.

But there is one thing that I think we should take his advice on, which is  a rare feature from the (INAUDIBLE) Republican governor in this nation  should be expanding vote by mail as quickly as possible. That`s how we`re  going to have a great election during a pandemic.

REID:  And very quickly, so you said people can register online, everyone  gets mailed a ballot, it`s universal, what`s the turnout rate like in  Colorado, in general?

GRISWOLD:  Well, we consistently lead the nation in turnout, and a large  part of that is because of vote by mail. So since its adoption, our turnout  rates increased by 9 percent, including by 13 percent for black voters, 10  percent for Latino voters, 16 percent for young voters. So it`s one of the  reasons that we have the most accessible elections in the nation.

And, by the way, elections are not just facing a crisis of the pandemic, we  are also facing the crisis of foreign interference. And, frankly, Russia  and other countries cannot hack a paper ballot, that`s why vote by mail is  such a good thing for this country to expand immediately.

REID:  Yes, absolutely. And please protect your voter rolls too because  that`s one thing they can`t get into.

Jason, you had now in Iowa, of all places, the governor of Iowa, Kim  Reynolds, has now signed an order that would restore the right to vote for  former felons. That`s a good thing. We`re seeing some expansions in the  franchise. But what do you make of the ways in which most Republicans,  other than Ms. Reynolds here, are really fighting to force young people,  people of color to stand in line during a pandemic?

They really are engaged in trying to make sure that that`s the only way  that people who aren`t their people can vote. And in Florida, trying to  keep former felons from voting, even though there is a constitutional  amendment saying they can, but saying we have to pay what amounts to a poll  tax in order to vote.

I mean, to me, it speaks of weakness and an inability to win an election.  But I want to know from the political science mind of yours, what does it  say to you?

JOHNSON:  In sports, you always say if you`re not cheating, you`re not  trying. But in politics, if you`re cheating, it means you`re losing. What`s  been happening is the reason that the Republicans are so obsessed with  making it difficult for young people and black people to vote, whether that  is Georgia, whether is that is Florida, whether that is in Utah, whether  that is in Texas, is because they know that young people and former felons  are likely to be people who will vote Democratic or at least vote out the  status quo, to be perfectly honest.

And here`s the problem. When you continue to play whack-a-mole and make it  harder and harder for people to vote, it becomes a less precise weapon and  it ends up actually hurting you. Look, there are young college students who  like Donald Trump. But if you`re making it hard for them to vote, maybe  they can`t flip that one college town. There are seniors and older black  people occasionally who may want to vote for a Republican governor and  you`re making it harder for them to vote. The Republicans are engaging in  this very unsophisticated attack on everybody, hoping that it plays out in  their favor.

And I think what they`re going to underestimate is the number of white  people that they frustrate and white independents that they frustrate with  these voter suppression tactics who end up throwing them out of office.

REID:  I think the high political science term for that is punching  yourself in the face.

Thank you very much, Jena Griswold, Jason Johnson, I appreciate both of you  for being here. Thank you.

And up next on THE REIDOUT, Trump`s strategy for addressing the  coronavirus, well, we`ll show you the way.

Also, remember Cori Bush from that documentary, Knock Down the House?


CORI BUSH, DEMOCRATIC NOMINEE, MISSOURI:  I was not trying to become an  activist. I live six minutes from Ferguson.

Being a woman of color, our image is scrutinized. People in my district,  this is how we look.


REID:  Well, Cori didn`t win that time, but she sure did yesterday, pulling  off a major upset. And she is here with me tonight.

And for our craziest damn thing, we`re putting Agents Mulder and Scully on  the case, because the truth is out there, just not from him.

And Trump-backers working to get Kanye West on the ballot in Wisconsin.  We`ll get to that and much more when THE REIDOUT continues.


REID:  More than six months into the pandemic, and Donald Trump is still  not willing to face the facts. After his devastating interview with  Jonathan Swan from Axios, Trump retreated back to his safe space of the Fox  and Friends Company Couch this morning, where he continued to push for  schools to reopen, falsely claiming that children are almost immune to the  virus and that it would all just go away.


TRUMP:  My view is the schools should open. This thing is going away. It  will go away like things go away. And my view is that schools should be  open. If you look at children, children are almost -- and I would almost  say definitely, but almost immune from this disease.


REID:  None of that is true. It isn`t the first time Trump claimed it would  magically just go away.


TRUMP:  This virus is going to disappear.

It`s going to disappear one day. It`s like a miracle, it will disappear.

Calm, you have to be calm. It will go away.

This is going to go away without a vaccine.

This is going away.

It`s going to go away. This is going to go away.

I said it`s going away and it is going away.

It will go away. You know it is going away.


REID:  Okay. Not only is it not going away, we`re continuing to see hot  spots emerge across the country, especially in the south. Mississippi is  seeing the number of daily new cases roughly double since the start of July  and its positivity rate is over 20 percent. In fact, if things don`t  change, Mississippi could soon overtake Florida as the state with the most  new coronavirus infections per capita, according to researchers at Harvard.

For more, I`m joined by the Mayor Chokwe Lumumba of Jackson Mississippi,  and Dr. Lipi Roy, an Internal Medicine Physician.

Mayor Lumumba, let me start with you first. What would your constituents  say to you if you told them that this virus that`s killing their neighbors  and family members is just going to go away? Would anyone take you  seriously if you said that in your city?

MAYOR CHOKWE LUMUMBA (D-JACKSON, MS):  I don`t think that my constituents  could say much. They would just vote me out of office. I think reality is  that we don`t need 1,000 confirmations of who Donald Trump is. The question  is, who are we, what proactive steps are we going to take from a state  level, what proactive steps are cities needing to step into? And so it`s  requiring that we step into that void and make certain that we do all that  we can to protect our citizens.

And while the president wants to have a willful blindness to the facts, we  don`t have that luxury here in Mississippi.

REID:  Your governor, at first, Tate Reeves, was very much against the idea  of mask mandates and seemed to be 100 percent with President Trump on the  issue of the pandemic. He`s now done a 180. He has now mandated masks. He`s  delayed the start of school. There`s a two-week statewide mask mandate, and  delaying school reopening in counties with more than 200 cases. It`s an  executive order that will require teachers and students to wear masks. Is  that enough in your view, Mr. Mayor?

LUMUMBA: We really don`t have a choice. It has to be done. 

The reality is that we haven`t operated with a sense of urgency. In the  city of Jackson, we issued a mask mandate nearly a month ago. When the --  we saw the state (AUDIO GAP) reopen, reopen the city, at that time, I  warned that I didn`t think that it was based on data. It was based on  political pressure. 

And so we`re seeing the ill effects of that. As we see students prepare to  go back to school, it`s not just about the health of our children, which we  are certainly concerned about, but our children to be asymptomatic carriers  that bring the virus home to mom and dad. 

They can be asymptomatic carriers that bring it to our teachers that are so  kind to enter into the noble profession (AUDIO GAP). And so there are a  litany of issues that he fails to recognize by pushing children into  schools. 

And so one of the things that I have centered around is if that needs to be  an adjustment to the 180-day requirement for the districts to have  accreditation for the school year. By restricting those number of days, it  allows the districts to map out a plan that is better able to assess  safety, and better able to assess the inequity issues that are created.

Not every child has a computer, even if you try to go virtually. Not every  child has access to Internet. And so we need to not only be concerned about  safety, but we have to make certain that we`re not creating a greater  divide in equity of education. 

REID:  Yes.

And, Dr. Roy, I wonder if you think it`s too late. A state like Mississippi  that is now belatedly putting in just a two-week mask mandate -- I want to  just put up a number of cases and U.S. deaths worldwide. We`re seeing this  pandemic spiking again around the country. 

But when you hear that a governor is now belatedly putting in a mask  mandate this late in the game, will that do any good at this point? 

DR. LIPI ROY, MSNBC MEDICAL CONTRIBUTOR:  Yes, Joy, that`s a great  question. 

And, first of all, I`m thrilled to be on THE REIDOUT prime time. So thank  you for having me. 

The mayor brought up a great phrase. He used the phrase a sense of urgency.  It is now August. We`re in the second half of 2019. And I don`t know about  you, but I`m still not getting that sense of urgency from our elected  officials. 

The White House, in my opinion, really needs to be proactive in three key  areas, widespread, rapid point-of-care testing, second, a focus on the one  area that we know works, which is prevention. As you probably know, I don`t  leave my home without wearing a mask. 

This simple item, along with the physical distancing, actually can  dramatically contain the virus. And, third, and perhaps most important, a  national strategy that`s specifically detailed and tailored to each state  when it comes to testing, prevention, school and business reopening, and  PPE, because, in a matter of weeks, we`re going to have flu season.

Flu, coronavirus and all the other neglected illnesses, such as heart  disease and stroke and cancer, our health care system is going to be  decimated if we don`t protect them as well. 

But in order to do all of that, Joy -- and, by the way, that national  strategy also really needs to address the people who are most impacted, our  most vulnerable, communities of color, black, Native and Hispanic  Americans. 

But in order to do so, Joy, you need the two C`s. You need competence and  you need compassion. 

REID:  Yes.

And there`s -- because there is no national strategy, Dr. Roy, which is  still shocking, right? It`s August. We`re still -- we`re months into this,  and we don`t have a national strategy. 

You`re now seeing states do it themselves. There are seven states --  unfortunately, Mississippi is not one of them -- but Louisiana, Maryland,  Massachusetts, Michigan, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia have now sort of  created a compact, the same way that New York, New Jersey and states in the  Northeast have done.

And it`s a seven-state effort to purchase more than three million  coronavirus antigen tests. It said it was born out of need and  disappointment. It was midwifed by the Rockefeller Foundation and Maryland  Governor Larry Hogan. It skirts Donald Trump`s administration, even if many  governors would prefer an approach coordinated by the federal government.

Can state compacts actually start to fight this virus, in part because you  can`t necessarily bar people from other states coming into your state? But  do You think this will actually start to reduce this the rapid rise in the  pandemic? 

ROY:  Well, Joy, I mean, the states are compelled to do this, right,  because they`re lacking the support from their -- our federal leaders. 

You saw this happening, coalitions happening among states early on in the  pandemic. You saw that with New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, where the  governors all formed a coalition, including Massachusetts, with a  Republican governor. 

I mean, you just need people that are that are smart and that follow the  evidence Joy. That`s really what it comes down to. So, the fact that  Mississippi and other states are creating these coalitions that are basing  their policies on evidence, on the science, that -- it`s going to work. 

It`s never too late. Yes, obviously, it would have been ideal if this was  all implemented on a state -- on a national level back in March-April to  prevent the unneeded deaths that we`re seeing in other states. 

REID:  Yes. 

ROY:  But, hey, it`s never too late. If they can implement it today, that  means lives are going to be saved down the road. 

REID:  Yes.

And, Mayor Lumumba, I wonder if there`s a possibility for city to city to  do something similar. I mean, I know the economic devastation that we`re  seeing across the country, which is disproportionately being visited on  black communities, along with the health devastation that`s happening, and  I`m sure that that`s happening in Jackson as well. 

Is there a way to maybe combine with other states to work together -- or  other cities to work together on mandates, et cetera?

LUMUMBA:  Well, to Dr. Roy`s point, in the absence of federal leadership,  we look towards the state. In the absence of state leadership, we look  toward city leaderships to do so -- city leadership to do so. 

And so I`m constantly within discussions with other leaders across the  state, looking at how we can create our own uniform policy. The reality is  that our communities are far too interconnected. There are literally parts  of my city where just across the street lies another incorporated  community. 

And so if we`re doing all that we can to socially distance, if we`re doing  all that we can to shut down certain establishments where there are --  there`s a heavy amount of congregation, or even issuing a mask mandate, and  they`re choosing not to do so, then that puts pressure on our community. 

It makes our social distancing efforts more of a notion than a reality. 

REID:  Yes. 

LUMUMBA:  And the circumstance in Jackson is not only are we the largest  sitting by a factor of three, but we`re also the capital of health care.

And it puts pressure on own our health facilities as well. 

REID:  And I assume that Mississippi does not -- has not expanded Medicaid,  right? That -- would that help you, if there was an expanded Medicaid in  your state? 

LUMUMBA:  Absolutely. 

And we -- our city resembles the demographic that is most detrimentally  impacted by this virus. We`re about 85 percent black.

REID:  Yes. Yes. 

LUMUMBA:  People not having their own personal health care physicians. 

REID:  Yes. 

LUMUMBA:  And so this is a very dire circumstance here in Jackson,  Mississippi and the state abroad. 

REID:  Yes. 

Well, we will be praying for all of you who -- in Jackson.

We thank you for coming on. Mayor Chokwe Lumumba, thank you so much.

Dr. Lipi Roy, as always, thank you so much. Always great to talk with you. 

And still ahead: Listen to what Trump had to say about his upcoming  convention. 


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  We will have some great,  great people making speeches. And I will probably do mine live from the  White House. 


REID:  In the words of one Republican senator:  Is that even legal? 

We will find out next. Don`t go anywhere. 


REID:  The DNC announced today that next month`s Democratic National  Convention will be entirely virtual, with Joe Biden officially accepting  the nomination from his home state of Delaware, instead of from Milwaukee,  as originally planned. 

This comes as Trump today floated the idea of giving his acceptance speech  from the White House lawn.


TRUMP:  We`re thinking about doing it from the White House, because there`s  no movement. It`s easy. And I think it`s a beautiful setting. 


REID:  As NBC`s Rebecca Shabad reports, use of the White House as a  platform for a reelection speech would be highly unusual and represent a  blurring of the line between taxpayer-supported government activity and  political campaigning. 

The Hatch Act says that an employee may not engage in political activity in  any room or building occupied in holding office in the government of the  United States. 

But the law does not apply to the president or the vice president, making a  political speech there by a president a move that would technically be  legal, as "The New York Times" puts it, period. 

Meanwhile, last night was a big night for congressional primary elections.  Congressional -- Congressman Roger Marshall won the Republican nomination  for the open Senate seat in Kansas, defeating anti-immigration firebrand  Kris Kobach.

And Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, a member of the Squad, fended off  her primary challenge last night. 

But the biggest news of the night was easily the Missouri 1st District  race, where nurse, pastor, and activist Cori Bush defeated Congressman  William Lacy Clay, ending a political dynasty that has spanned more than  half-a-century. 

Clay`s father, Bill Clay, was elected to the district in 1968. He was a co- founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus and served until 2000,  when his son, William Lacy Clay, took over the seat. 

I will talk to Cori Bush about her historic win after this quick break. 



CORI BUSH (D), MISSOURI CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE:  It is historic that this  year, of all years...



BUSH: ... we`re sending a black, working-class single mother...



BUSH: ... who has been fighting for black lives from Ferguson all the way  to the halls of Congress.



REID:  I`m joined now by Cori Bush, the Democratic primary winner in  Missouri`s 1st District. 

And, first of all, Ms. Bush, congratulations. 

BUSH:  Thank you so much. And it`s an honor to be here with you. 

REID:  Oh, thank you so much. 

I saw your kids standing there. Those looked like my kids. Your son was  standing there like, can I go home? Your daughter was, like, obviously  super thrilled. 


REID:  What did your family say when you won? 

BUSH:  Oh, my dad jumped up and down. He cried. He`s been in politics for a  very long time. 

And to see his daughter just come through like that, I mean, and the  support that I had, he cried in front of everybody. 

REID:  Yes. 

BUSH:  My children did the same. 


REID:  Absolutely. 

Well, of course, we all watched the documentary in which the ending was so  tragic, when you didn`t win against Lacy Clay when you ran against him  before,"Bring Down the House."

And everyone was rooting for you to run again, to try again. I`m sure lots  of people said, try again. And you did. 

What does it mean to you to beat not just any politician? But, I mean, I  did a deep dive on Bill Clay and William Clay. You`re talking about the son  of one of the co-founders of the Congressional Black Caucus. His father was  a legend in that district, held that seat for 40 years. He then inherited  the seat. 

Do you think part of why you were so successful this second time was  because he really wasn`t in the district that much? There`s a piece by John  Allen that talks about the fact that, once his dad got in Congress, they  basically moved to Maryland-D.C., area, and he really lived more in  Maryland and D.C. than in the District. 

Do you think it was his absence that made it possible for you? Or was it  something else? 

BUSH:  Absolutely, I think that that`s what it was.

So, knocking doors, making phone calls to the district, that`s the main  thing that people were saying, is just that he`s absent. And when we`re  talking about the place where the Ferguson uprising happened...

REID:  Yes. 

BUSH: ... we`re talking about where protests broke out for more than 400  days that sparked a revolution that -- where we`re still having the ripple  effects of it now, where so much -- where we`re always one or -- number  one, number two for homicides and high from -- high on the list for violent  crime, and high poverty and all of that.

And it continues in this community. And people are looking for the leader  that`s going to help us through it, but be here to help us through it. 

What people have seen with me is that I have been here. I have been the  active leader, and I am the people I serve. I have been that person that  has had to walk through these struggles. And I have been very open about  it. 

But that`s the difference. Being here, even if you weren`t raised here, be  a part of the district, because that`s how you know what the people need.  You`re the representative. 

REID:  Yes.

Well, and your story is really moving. I mean, I was reading about the fact  that at one point you had to leave your job. You were working in preschool  education, lived in your truck, in your car for a while with your young  children. 

You have been through those kinds of struggles. As you said, you`re a  working-class woman. 

Do you think that that is what`s missing in Congress? So many of those  people are millionaires and multimillionaires, so many of them are  disconnected from the idea that $600 extra in your unemployment check could  make all the difference in the world. That`s something they can`t relate  to. 

Do you think the fact that you can relate to those kinds of struggles, do  you think that that will make you a different kind of congresswoman, and in  what way would you be different? 

CORI BUSH (D-MO), CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE:  Yes, it will make me a  different Congress person. I think that we need to have different people  from different walks of life that represent our country.

And so, this district is, you know, we have a lot of poverty, we have --  and we don`t just have poverty. We need people who can represent on  different levels in Congress. For me, being someone who has lived out of my  car, you know, let me tell you, that pain of the struggle that I`ve been  through, I can still feel that pain right now. 

So that pain is walking with me into the doors -- into the doors of  Congress, and that`s what is going to feed me. That`s what is going to fuel  everything that I do. That, and what I`ve seen the rest of our people in  the community go through, how much we have had to fight. 

And when we`re looking at what`s happening in other places, it`s like, why  are we fighting so much? Why do we have to struggle so hard? Especially  black women in this community. You know, we`re fighting so much, you know,  where is the relief? 

I`m ready to bring the relief. I`m ready to be that champion, because I`ve  been fighting this thing, unpaid fighting it, just because we need a  different type of life. We need equality to our lives. We need to stop  surviving St. Louis and start thriving here. 

REID:  Yeah, absolutely. Well, of course, you were very much involved in  the Michael Brown protest. You`ve been very much, as you said, a part of  the community, fighting the fight with your soon-to-be constituents. 

Very quickly, what`s the most important thing that you want to accomplish  as a congresswoman? What is the thing you want to fight the most for?

BUSH:  Equity. That`s going to be in our healthcare system, our school  systems. It`s going to be when we are dealing with wage equality,  environmental justice, reproductive justice. All of it will start with  equity, you know, because we have so many marginalized groups in our  community. 

REID:  Well, I will say that Missouri should be very proud that the people  decide to expand Medicaid, expand Obamacare in the state. That was also  another big win.

But I think the biggest win for a lot of people was you. Cori Bush,  congratulations. I`m sure you`re going to be great in Congress. Thank you  so much, and hello to your kids. 

And a quick reminder, that we are 89 days from the election. Hey, and that  means there`s still time to register to vote. So get out there and do it. 

Up next, the craziest damn thing in the world. 


REID:  So the relationship between Lou Dobbs and Donald Trump is crazy. 


LOU DOBBS, FBN HOST: This president is not a politician. He is, arguably,  the greatest president in our history. 

It is a shame that this country, which has -- benefitting so much from this  president`s leadership, does not understand their obligations to the  leader. 

A lot is happening in Washington, and all across this great country of  ours. It`s because we have a president who is a true leader in my opinion.  What I happen to believe will be regarded as this country`s greatest  presidents, indeed our greatest. 


REID:  OK, OK. That is well, bizarre. But according to a "Daily Beast"  report from several years ago, the feeling is mutual. 

Trump cherishes Dobbs. He calls him at night to gossip and ask for advice.  Trump even puts him on speakerphone during White House meetings. That`s not  frightening at all. 

So it`s certainly not crazy that President Trump called in to Lou Dobbs`  show last night. But you know what is crazy? After reciting the usual  talking points we`ve heard countless times before, the conversation  straight into literal uncharted territory. 

Dobbs took the time to ask Trump, out of all things, UFOs. 


DOBBS:  A lot of my friends are very concerned about what the federal  government is doing when it comes to UFOs. So if I could just ask you, are  we going to commit -- are you going to commit more resources to exploring  UFOs and open the documents to the public? 

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  Well, I think you`re  probably in this country, you`re the UFO expert in this country. I`ll do  whatever you ask me to do, including total transparency. 


REID:  OK, wait. A lot of Dobbs` friends are very concerned about UFOs? Who  is he hanging out with? 

And I`m sorry, I`m sorry, did President Trump just say Lou Dobbs is a UFO  expert? What is happening? 

This crazy Trump TV show has jumped from "Veep" to "The X-Files." Instead  of Moulder and Skelly, we`ve got Dobbs and Trump.

But the sad truth is that UFOs are far more believable than many of  harebrained conspiracies that Trump and his followers have embraced, from  birtherism to claims about Hillary Clinton`s server, to the false  allegation that Obama spied on him. Trump is willing to bend the truth as  far as he can.

And that`s crazy. That`s all so crazy. Well, here`s the Trump version of  "The X-Files." We call it the Trump files. 


TRUMP:  When you look at the people that are registered, dead, illegal, and  two states, we have a lot to look into. 

He gave a birth certificate. Whether or not that was a real certificate,  because a lot of people question it, I certainly question it. 

His father was with Lee Harvey Oswald. What was he doing with Lee Harvey  Oswald shortly before the death? 

This is a woman cheating the United States government for years with her  emails. 

They set up an illegal server, destroyed evidence, deleted and acid washed  33,000 emails. 

I was spied on by President Obama and Biden. 

The highest levels of government, they were spying on my campaign.


REID:  Well, the truth is certainly out there. 

And that is the craziest damn thing in the world. We`ll be right back. 



REID:  Kanye West has officially filed to get his name on the ballot as a  presidential candidate in Wisconsin. Since he announced his candidacy last  month, he has had mixed success. It`s becoming increasingly clear he`s  getting help from Republicans and Trump supporters, leading some to  question whether a clearly vulnerable Mr. West is being used to try to  siphon votes away from Joe Biden. 

Trump told reporters tonight that he had nothing to do with getting West on  the ballot.

For more, I`m joined by Shermichael Singleton, political consultant and  "Washington Examiner" contributor, and Ben Jacobs, reporter for "New York  Magazine". 

And, Ben, I want to go to you first on this. 

This is the states -- this is (INAUDIBLE) of my producers of where Kanye  West has gotten on state ballots and the status so far. He`s qualified only  in Oklahoma fully. Pending Wisconsin, West Virginia, Vermont, Missouri,  Illinois, Colorado, Ohio. Some of those states are swing, and missed it in  Florida. How serious is this effort clearly by Republican operatives, some  of whom were actually seen going in and bringing ballots in to get him on  the ballot in Wisconsin? 

BEN JACOBS, NEW YORK MAGAZINE:  It`s certainly serious enough that there is  a concerted effort to get him on the ballots in these states, to get him on  the ballot in Wisconsin where one Republican told "The Milwaukee Journal  Sentinel" today that they thought Kanye West could get 100,000 votes in the  state. In terms of what Kanye is dong, it`s unclear how that`s going. That  he`s, you know, purported to be off with his wife for Paris (ph) and his  marriage, and that this process seems to be almost taking place on  autopilot, without any real involvement from the candidate. But it`s going.  And his name is going to be on the ballot in some of these states. 

REID:  Yeah. I mean, Shermichael, it seems clear that Republicans, in order  to win, understand they have to recreate the similar conditions that Donald  Trump had in 2016. They need to lie about Joe Biden and make him a hated  figure. That hasn`t really worked so far. The media hasn`t taken the bait  on some of the garbage they have tried to throw on him. 

And they need there to be a Jill Stein type of figure. If you look at the  way that Donald Trump won in Wisconsin last night, he got 47 percent of the  vote. Hillary Clinton got 46 percent of vote in Wisconsin. Jill Stein only  got 1 percent of the vote. But that added up to 31,000 votes. 

Trump only won by 22,748 votes. If he could somehow get a third person in  there that people could vote for instead of Biden, he could recreate those  conditions. 


REID:  Is that to your understanding the plan? That`s the plan?

SINGLETON:  That`s what it appears -- that is -- that`s what it appears to  be. 

I mean, the dynamics that existed in 2016 that assisted Donald Trump in  being elected do not exist this time around with Joe Biden, in my opinion.  And if you look at Jill Stein and the impact she had in several  battleground states, it is very clear that the numbers would indeed assist  Donald Trump. Kanye West may not show up in Wisconsin. He may not show up  in a place like Michigan or Nevada. 

But the fact that he is on the ballot, Joy, he could, indeed siphon some  votes away from Biden. Maybe it`s 22,748 votes by which Trump won in  Wisconsin. Maybe it`s 44,000 votes by which I believe he won in Michigan.  That could be enough, Joy, to impact and tilt the race in Mr. Trump`s  favor. That has to be something that the Biden campaign should be paying a  lot of attention to. 

REID:  Yeah. Let me play for you Kanye West during a Charleston, South  Carolina, rally for this nascent campaign for president. This was on July  19th. Take a listen. 


KANYE WEST, MUSICIAN: When Harriet Tubman -- well, Harriet Tubman never  actually freed the slaves. She just had the slaves go work for other white  people. 


REID:  Kim Kardashian has given a statement on her husband, saying those  that understand mental illness or even compulsive behavior know that the  family is powerless unless the member is a minor. People who are unaware or  far removed from this experience can be judgmental and not understand that  the individual themselves has to engage in the process of getting help no  matter how hard family and friends try. 

So, I think a lot of people assume, Ben, that Kanye West is being used  because Republicans can conveniently get him on the ballot in places where  young people, disaffected people may put down Kanye West because it is not  Joe Biden. 

But my question is whether or not that`s entirely true. I mean, we know  Kanye West is a Trump supporter. We know he got millions of dollars from  the PPP program, which is supposed to go to small businesses. He got that  money. 

So he does have a financial and a political interest in Trump being re- elected. Do you have any reporting that states that it is not just his  mental health that`s at work here? It is his own personal and political  interests? 

JACOBS:  I don`t have any specific reporting there. The one thing he`s been  vocal about is being pro-life and that jives with -- you know, he talked  about that in South Carolina. But it`s also hard to see where this is going  because obviously there is a significant side of the electorate who has  been inclined to vote for a celebrity who says controversial and  problematic things, so they`re not Joe Biden voters. So, it`s even more  curious how this all play out in November as well.

REID:  The same question I guess to you, Shermichael. Is there a belief  inside of the Trump world that this will actually work, that he will pull  enough voters away from Biden that will it allow Donald Trump to sweep a  state like Wisconsin, where there`s also lots of voter suppression? 

SINGLETON:  Right. I mean, from my understanding, there is, Joy, I spoke  with a friend of mine who has very close relations with the Trump campaign  and told me there are some people on the inside internally that are hoping  that that is the result. I mean, Joy, we have to ask ourselves, a majority  of the state at this point is already surpassed trying to get on the ballot  as a presidential candidate. There are only a handful that are remaining.  It is an expensive process, an exhaustive process. 

Who is paying for this? Who`s supporting a Kanye West and why are they  supporting him?

These are all legitimate questions that have to be asked because at this  point in time no serious candidate, Joy, would attempt to do what Mr. West  is trying to do. There is no other thought in my mind other than it`s to  help Donald Trump. 

REID:  Yep, that`s what it seems to be. 

Shermichael Singleton, Ben Jacobs, that`s -- thank you both very much. 

That`s tonight`s REIDOUT.

"ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts right now.