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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 07/28/15

Guests: Brandy Zadrozny, Stacy Phillips, Nicholas Confessore, Beth Fouhy,Valerie Fallows, Valerie Plame, Theodore Simon

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: That does it for us tonight, we`ll see you again tomorrow, now it`s time for THE LAST WORD with Lawrence O`Donnell, good evening Lawrence. LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST: Good evening Rachel, thank you. MADDOW: Thank you. O`DONNELL: Well, the Trump campaign stopped being funny today when an accusation made under oath by Donald Trump`s first wife was reported in the "The Daily Beast", the reporter who wrote that story will join us. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DONALD TRUMP, CHAIRMAN & PRESIDENT, THE TRUMP ORGANIZATIONS & FOUNDER, TRUMP ENTERTAINMENT RESORTS: Well, some people think I`m not a nice person. No, you`re finished. You don`t even know what you`re talking about. GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I have been treated very unfairly. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you disagree with someone, you just can`t fire them. MIKE HUCKABEE, FORMER ARKANSAS GOVERNOR: I`ll swim in my lane, I`ll let Donald Trump swim in his. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As president of the United States, would you use the words march the Israelis to the door of the oven? HUCKABEE: Yes, I would. JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE, UNITED STATES: The alternative to the deal that we have reached is not some kind of unicorn fantasy. MORGAN FREEMAN, ACTOR: The agreement currently on the table is the best way to ensure Iran doesn`t build a -- bomb. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need a better deal. JOHN OLIVER, COMEDIAN & TELEVISION HOST: Oh, a better deal. (LAUGHTER) Of course, why didn`t John Kerry think of that? TRUMP: I`ve watched Kerry negotiating and I said to people, is he bright? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Those running for president have to say outrageous things to get attention. BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I actually think I`m a pretty good president, I think if I run I could win. TRUMP: I would beat him so easily -- JIMMY KIMMEL, COMEDIAN & TELEVISION HOST: It`s all going to be very funny until the White House is covered in gold paint. It really is. (LAUGHTER) (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Donald Trump presidential campaign took a very dark turn last night when "The Daily Beast" posted a story with the headline, "Ex-wife: Donald Trump made me feel violated during sex". "The Daily Beast`s" reporting was largely based on the 1993 book "Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump" by Harry Hurt III. The book includes an account of an under-oath deposition in which Ivana Trump accused Donald Trump of raping her in 1989 while they were still married. The deposition was a part of their divorce proceedings. The book includes a statement by Ivana Trump which was inserted by the publisher at the last minute. Statement says, "during a deposition given by me in connection with my matrimonial case, I stated that my husband had raped me. I referred to this as a rape but I do not want my words to be interpreted in a literal or criminal sense." "The Daily Beast" article summarized the book`s account of the incident this way. "After a painful scalp reduction surgery to remove a bald spot, Donald Trump confronted his then wife who had previously used the same plastic surgeon. Your f-ing doctor has ruined me, Trump cried, what followed was a violent assault according to "Lost Tycoon". Donald held back Ivana`s arms and began to pull out fist-full of hair from her scalp as if to mirror the pain he felt from his own operation." There are more details of that alleged assault in "The Daily Beast" article which I cannot read on this program. Today, Ivana Trump issued a statement about "The Daily Beast" article saying, "I have recently read some comments attributed to me from nearly 30 years ago, at a time of very high tension during my divorce from Donald. The story is totally without merit. Donald and I are the best of friends and together have raised three children that we love and are very proud of. I have nothing but fondness for Donald and wish him the best of luck on his campaign. Incidentally, I think he would make an incredible president." Tonight on Fox News, Donald Trump said this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: It`s totally false and Ivana said it was false. You can`t do any better than that. I don`t think Ivana was called at all. But when she read it, she put out a statement that it was false. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All right -- TRUMP: I mean, you can`t do better than that. She put out a statement that it was false. The fact is, it never happened and Ivana said it never happened. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Brandy Zadrozny, a reporter for "The Daily Beast" who wrote that story, Nick Confessore, a political reporter for the "New York Times", Beth Fouhy, senior editor at Msnbc and host of "REPORTER`S NOTEBOOK" on shift by Msnbc. Also joining us, Stacy Phillips, divorce attorney and founder and managing principal of Phillips Lerner in Los Angeles. Brandy, the story in here, Donald Trump is now saying, it`s not true, it`s not true and his wife Ivana says it`s not true. According to what I have seen here, there are exact -- there are exactly three statements from Ivana Trump about this one under oath, saying what happened was rape. And then when the book was coming out a few years after that, a statement saying, "I called it rape under oath, but I didn`t mean it in a legal sense". And then this statement today about your article, how do you interpret the statement she gave today? BRANDY ZADROZNY, THE DAILY BEAST: Well, the first statement like you said was a sworn deposition under oath and she said these things. The second statement she gave was after they had reached a settlement where she received some $14 million and she also had the condition of a gag order. So, she can no longer say anything about Donald Trump or their marriage without it going through Donald Trump. O`DONNELL: Yes, so in the divorce agreement, she is under a gag order involving anything concerning her marriage. So, for example, the statement today that was given according to her divorce agreement, Donald Trump would have the legal right to approve every word of that statement today? ZADROZNY: Correct, and it`s not like we didn`t try to reach out to her, of course we reached out to her and we got radio silence. And now in this -- through Donald Trump and through the campaign, now she has something to say. And which I think interestingly enough, it`s not what I said in my deposition as untrue, it is the story is without merit, we are great friends, I wish him luck in his campaign, all of that. But I haven`t seen her say that that`s untrue. So when Trump goes on Fox and says that she had said this is false, I just think that`s untrue. O`DONNELL: And Stacy Phillips, as an attorney with experience in these kinds of cases, how do you read the unfolding of these statements, the first one under oath some 30 years ago and then what we`ve seen through today? STACY PHILLIPS, ATTORNEY: Exactly the same way as described. The detail that she provided during the deposition has excerpted, seemed quite compelling to me. That when she was asked, I am sure to write that little blurb for the book because they knew -- that the Donald knew that this would, you know, explode. And now what better could you have that it`s your ex-wife where been very public that there were problems supporting you and I am not surprised that genuinely she feels that way. After 30 years and emotions change, and raising kids -- that`s the past and what better way to sort of vindicate herself that her ex-husband is sitting in the White House. She`ll probably be invited to the Lincoln bedroom. O`DONNELL: Yes, Stacy Phillips, I want to get to the evolution of feelings in your experience in bitter divorces and this was clearly one of those bitter divorce cases according to the deposition and other aspects of the proceedings. But even in some of the most bitter divorce cases you`ve handled, I imagine that over time, the litigants once unmarried and co-parenting over decades, as they have done, at some point, some -- many of these bitterness are let go. People just let bygones be bygones and they feel very differently about them over time. PHILLIPS: I think it goes to one of two extremes. You know, whether 80 years old, they still hate each other and act out inappropriately. We`ve seen TV stories and movies about that. And then others who, you know, sort of grow up in a different way and works through it and that was the past. For the bitter divorces, you hope that at least evolves into something more appropriate and you know, kudos to them if they have a really good relationship. O`DONNELL: Wonder if -- PHILIPS: Benefits to their kids. O`DONNELL: Yes, I want to listen to something else Donald Trump said on "Fox News" tonight about how you and the press can get away with saying anything about him and he just can`t sue you. Let`s listen to this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: I think it`s amazing what the press is allowed to get away with nowadays. If they can come out with a thing and somebody like me has no recourse because the liable laws are so pathetic and so weak that you can`t bring litigation or lawsuits. My lawyer got a phone call and he said we`ll sue if you write it because it`s totally false. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Of course, it was a Fox News interview, so there was no exploration -- NICHOLAS CONFESSORE, NEW YORK TIMES: Right -- O`DONNELL: Of the conflict in those two statements. But Brandy, you were threatened very strongly by Michael Cohen, his lawyer and we`ll get to some of the quotes of those threats. Tell us about inside "The Daily Beast", the decision to publish. This had to go with those threats and had to go all the way to the top, it had to go to the ownership, I assume. ZADROZNY: Well, sure. So, we are a very small newsroom and we`re lean and we`re run by Noah Shachtman and John Avlon who are really fearless and are gutsy. And it wasn`t even a question. We weren`t concerned, we weren`t -- I mean, of course went to our lawyers who might be a little concerned but there was no question that we were going to publish this. Because, you know, he has a long history of doing this -- O`DONNELL: Your lawyers did not say, this is too risky, they`re very litigious, they will sue us and even though we might win, it could cost us too much money in winning -- nothing like that from their words? -- ZADROZNY: So, we may be the only people that haven`t been sued by Donald Trump yet. I mean, he is a -- O`DONNELL: Welcome to the group that`s been threatened though -- ZADROZNY: Yes -- O`DONNELL: I got a little Twitter threat from Donald four years -- ZADROZNY: Oh -- O`DONNELL: Ago about getting sued. ZADROZNY: Could actually -- O`DONNELL: But he never did, I knew he wasn`t going to do it. I knew -- ZADROZNY: Will be -- O`DONNELL: He didn`t mean it -- ZADROZNY: Yes, he loves to threaten -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- ZADROZNY: But he makes good on a lot of those threats -- O`DONNELL: He does -- ZADROZNY: He`s got ton of people -- O`DONNELL: Well, yes. And Nick, that`s what`s so interesting about this, because here is a guy who did sue someone, "New York Times" reporter for writing a book questioning how rich he was. That was enough for him to sue him and lose, by the way, in that lawsuit. CONFESSORE: Right -- O`DONNELL: But here he is tonight with just -- it`s so unfortunate that he just can`t sue anybody because he`s a public figure. CONFESSORE: It`s hard to feel super bad for him. I mean, he has sued plenty of people, he`s lost a lot of those lawsuits. So, he has the same tools, you know, in front of him of any other famous person. But the facts are, you know, he`s so protective of his identity, of his wealth and presentation of his wealth. So, he often sues over somebody challenging how much money he has, which is fascinating. O`DONNELL: Yes, and Beth, to go back to the book that contains the original account of the deposition, he did not sue Harry Hurt or the publisher of that book in which Ivana Trump is quoted as saying he raped me and quoted as saying these things to her friends, right? And -- BETH FOUHY, SENIOR EDITOR, MSNBC: Right, and that`s what I understand about all this. I mean, you guys did a great reporting job and you found corroborating documents which is fantastic. But ultimately, this material was in the record, it was in this book. So, for Donald Trump, for Michael Cohen, his lawyer to threaten you guys based on something that was written more than 20 years ago makes no sense at all, except that it`s complete bluster. O`DONNELL: Now, here is what Michael Cohen said to you according to your story, this is what he said to you about the actual incident when he wasn`t threatening you. He may have said this in a threatening tone, but what he said was she felt raped emotionally, she was not referring to it as a criminal matter. But he is granting to you that whatever happened left Donald Trump`s wife feeling raped emotionally. ZADROZNY: Well, she says in her statement, she says -- O`DONNELL: In the statement to the -- about the book when it first came out, she says -- ZADROZNY: Right, exactly, she felt -- she felt violated -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- ZADROZNY: So, that`s very clear, you can`t walk that back -- yes, and -- CONFESSORE: And also by the way, in this book, it says that he went into her room, pulled hair out of her head, you know, this is a violent act, this is the guy who is running for president. O`DONNELL: And again, he`s never disputed the specifics of this -- CONFESSORE: Right -- O`DONNELL: But tonight, he is saying, you know, Ivana says it was not true, it did not happen. So his position is, it did not happen. And -- ZADROZNY: And he did dispute it, so -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- ZADROZNY: In the news report, that`s not -- (CROSSTALK) O`DONNELL: He also -- he also for the record disputed having the hair surgery also. ZADROZNY: And he called -- (LAUGHTER) O`DONNELL: It was important to him, he said he never had the scalp operation back then. What you were up against with Michael Cohen, who you took all of his threats and put them in your story quoting him. One of his threats was, "you write a story that has Mr. Trump`s name in it with the word "rape" and I`m going to mess up -- I`m going to mess your life up for as long as you`re on this fricking planet. You`re going to have judgments against you, so much money you`ll never know how to get out from underneath it." What did it feel like to be listening to that? ZADROZNY: It`s just insane, like you can`t threaten a reporter like that, who are these people? O`DONNELL: No, you can`t, and people do threaten reporters and there are reporters and publications and news organizations that get scared by threats like that and corporate lawyers with news organizations -- ZADROZNY: Right -- O`DONNELL: Who back down because of threats like that. FOUHY: But you know -- but you know, Lawrence, it`s -- Michael Cohen in many ways is kind of a doppelganger of Donald Trump himself. He could be very -- O`DONNELL: If Donald had gone to law school. ZADROZNY: We said today -- FOUHY: He is -- he is -- ZADROZNY: You were like, this is the guy that we are -- of course he`s Donald Trump, so, he`s -- FOUHY: Well -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- FOUHY: I mean, I`ve dealt -- I`ve dealt with Michael Cohen quite often, and he can be very charming, he could be very solicited, he would call me up and say, you know, Beth, sweetheart, how are you? You know, he -- and like Donald Trump, he can be very solicitous of reporters as well, you know. He calls reporters on the phone, he can flatter them and tell them how wonderful they are and how important they are, but as soon as you get on their back side, then they turn and they attack. And that`s what Michael Cohen did and that`s what Trump does. O`DONNELL: I want to read one of these threats to our lawyer, Stacy Philips, this is another threat that he made. And by the way, all on tape, he was being taped during the entire -- all these threats. He said to the reporters, "I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we`re in the court house and I will take you for every penny you still don`t have. And I will come after your "Daily Beast" and everybody else that you possibly know, so I`m warning you, thread very f-ing lightly because what I`m going to do to you is going to be f-ing disgusting. You understand me?" Stacy Phillips, your reaction to a lawyer saying that? PHILLIPS: He shouldn`t be a lawyer, that`s not the way you communicate. You don`t go to law school to act like a thug, and you can see, I guess it is just for (INAUDIBLE) are that, Donald has distanced himself from Mr. Cohen. O`DONNELL: And is that -- Stacy, in your experience, is that the kind of thing that you could -- you could bring a complaint to a bar association about? PHILLIPS: Yes, possibly because he is threatening, you know, bodily harm. When you said he was taped, was it on a voice mail or it was taped because he was talking to a reporter? ZADROZNY: It was -- he was talking to a reporter. PHILLIPS: OK, in California, without his permission that could not be done. So we have that problem, but there is a little bit of an exception there for criminal act. But -- CONFESSORE: I think in the U.S., the laws -- PHILLIPS: This is appropriate -- CONFESSORE: Are a bit different on -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- CONFESSORE: Concern -- ZADROZNY: In New York, I think it`s one way -- CONFESSORE: For a reporter, yes -- ZADROZNY: Right? O`DONNELL: OK -- CONFESSORE: Right, sorry -- O`DONNELL: We`re going to take -- PHILLIPS: New York is different -- O`DONNELL: We`re going to take a break here, Stacy Phillips, thank you very much for joining us tonight, really appreciate it. Up next, how the media is handling the Donald Trump story. And later, the international outrage over the Minnesota dentist who is accused of illegally killing a famous lion in Zimbabwe and the chances that, that dentist could be extradited to face criminal charges. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: Today in New Hampshire, Hillary Clinton got this question. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As president, would you sign a bill -- yes or no, please, in favor of allowing the Keystone XL pipeline? (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: What would the odds of the answer being yes or no? In her answer, Secretary Clinton noted that President Obama has not yet decided whether to approve the Keystone pipeline, and then she finished her answer this way. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: This is President Obama`s decision and I am not going to second-guess him. If it`s undecided when I become president, I will answer your question. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders issued a statement, saying, "we must make significant reductions in carbon emissions and break our dependency on fossil fuels. That is why I have helped lead the fight in the Senate against the Keystone pipeline." Up next, Donald Trump`s past public comments about rape. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HOWARD KURTZ, FOX NEWS: This is an appalling story that never should have been published. To take a 25-year-old single allegation by an ex-wife during a hotly contested divorce and try to make it as if Trump raped his wife. When she said in a statement subsequently that was included in this 1993 book, Megyn, that she didn`t even rape in a criminal or even a literal sense, it`s just the epitome of a cheap shot. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Brandy, there is Fox News saying, it`s an old allegation lie, they bring this up, it`s a cheap shot. ZADROZNY: The past matters. And so, I think it`s not like once you run for president, then all the things that have happened in your past, all the crazy things you`ve said just suddenly fall by the way side and it`s only what you present right now. So, when he made those comments about illegal immigrants coming in and raping everyone, we decided, what has he said -- (CROSSTALK) O`DONNELL: Your piece begins with that framework of what he said -- ZADROZNY: Right -- O`DONNELL: About rape with Mexican immigrants, you also pointed out other public comments he`s made about rape in the past. You point out, it was his idea that when Mike Tyson was convicted of rape, he should be able to buy his way out of jail, hand over money to rape victims instead of serve time -- ZADROZNY: He proposed a fight, and all the proceeds would go to rape victims including his own. O`DONNELL: He also tweeted in 2013 you reported about sexual assaults in the military and he said, "what did these geniuses expect when they put men and women together"? So, his explanation for the rape, I guess -- I mean, is that blaming the women? That you pick -- ZADROZNY: I don`t know -- O`DONNELL: You put women in the military with men, of course, there`s going to be rape -- ZADROZNY: I don`t know -- O`DONNELL: That was the -- ZADROZNY: If he`s blaming the women or blaming the men -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- ZADROZNY: That men are just such a brut that -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- ZADROZNY: The side of a women in combat will precipitate rape, or whether it`s the woman`s fault for wanting to fight alongside men, I can`t figure that one out, but either way it`s offensive -- O`DONNELL: And your piece also pointed out that he took out full-page ads in New York newspapers on the Central Park jogger case, saying that those suspects should get the death penalty. They were convicted, they were all then later released many years later when the evidence indicated they didn`t do it. And so, Nick Confessore, being a media referee here, is this a legitimate story? Is Howie Kurtz right that this is a hit job and there`s no legitimacy to this story. CONFESSORE: Well, Trump has one friend in the media, so that`s a good thing for him, he was complaining about the -- O`DONNELL: He`s got a lot of friends in the media actually. CONFESSORE: Look, it was the candidate`s views on gender are 30 years out of date, and I figure his comments from 30 years ago are whatever, are probably a fair game. This is rape we`re talking about or a serious allegation of rape. So, it`s totally a fair game, it`s absolutely 100 percent a legitimate story and good for you for doing it in the face of threats, I think. O`DONNELL: And -- FOUHY: Yes, and I want to say, Lawrence, I mean, to both Brandy and Nick`s point. I mean, he`s not running for president, he needs to be held to a different standard than he`s used to being held to. In fact, in the past where he`s floated the idea of running for president so many times and didn`t, everybody knew that this is one of the reasons, he doesn`t want his image to be punctured in any single way. But when you are a serious candidate for president, which he is, he is polling at the top of polls and everywhere that has been surveyed, you get subject to this kind of scrutiny. And any candidate in his position would be. Past statements would be explored, past behavior, a divorce and what went into that. This is not uncommon and he is just feeling the heat. O`DONNELL: So, now, let`s go -- CONFESSORE: He wants to be taken seriously and we are. O`DONNELL: Yes, let`s get to -- you know, and as far as this being an old case on the cover of "New York Magazine" with all these women who accused Bill Cosby of rape. All but two of them predate the incident we`re talking about with Donald Trump. All of these are older cases than what we`re talking about with Donald Trump. But -- and -- so Michael Cohen, today, was forced by Donald and by the circumstances to apologize, and so here is his apology and Brandy, I guess it`s an apology to you but I`m not so sure. It says, "as an attorney, husband and father, there are many injustices that offend me but nothing more than charges of rape or racism, they hit at my core. Rarely, am I surprised by the press, but the gall of this particular reporter to make such reprehensible and false allegation against Mr. Trump truly stunned me. In my moment of shock and anger, I made an inarticulate comment which I do not believe and which I apologize for entirely." Do you know which comment he`s talking about? ZADROZNY: I have yet to figure it out, I don`t know if -- that he`s going to f-ing destroy us or do something I think disgusting to us or if it`s about rape, marital rape isn`t real. I am -- O`DONNELL: Yes, because -- ZADROZNY: Going to find out -- O`DONNELL: When he said -- when he said it`s not a crime to rape your wife, turns out it is, it has been for a long time -- ZADROZNY: But who wouldn`t know that? O`DONNELL: Yes, he`s -- ZADROZNY: A lawyer -- O`DONNELL: He`s a lawyer, whatever he -- (LAUGHTER) But -- so, the angle that has emerged in the media is the -- the headline in the media outside of "Daily Beast" had nothing to do with rape. It was entirely Michael Cohen. Beth Fouhy, the story changed today, and at first people thought, oh, Michael Cohen did a terrible job. Look what he did, he made things worse for his guy. I would submit to you, Michael Cohen saved his guy. Because Michael Cohen made all the coverage today about a lawyer apologizing, a lawyer yelling and being wrong and none of the coverage, none of it was about what was that story in that deposition where Donald Trump`s wife used the word "rape"? What was that story? That`s been buried, thanks to Michael Cohen. FOUHY: Yes, but you also have to ask yourself, what are these people who he might -- who Donald Trump surrounds himself with? Is that the type of person he brings to the White House with him. I mean we applied that standard to Chris Christie and the bridge story. You know, perhaps Chris Christie was not involved in bridgegate, but clearly his aides were, and you`d have to ask, are those the people that you want advising a president and I think that`s a legitimate question in this case. O`DONNELL: But Nick, it seems to me that what Michael Cohen did in effect worked, it kind of got them through the day and changed the subject. CONFESSORE: I don`t agree, I think, it`s -- you know, kind of too clever. I think people are talking about this, it`s not a great day for you if you`re running for president and you`re talking about the definition of rape again. You know, a whole candidacy as we know, been ruined by talks about what it is and there is not rape, it`s never ever a good day. I -- O`DONNELL: All right, well, the latest Monmouth University poll in New Hampshire voters, let`s take a look at this, Donald Trump is at the top, 24, Jeb Bush hanging in there at second at 12, John Kasich at 7, Walker, 7, Rubio 6.5, Ben Carson and then it becomes less real as you go down there. And so, Brandy, one of the points Michael Cohen made to you is that, you are writing an article about the frontrunner for the Republican nomination. And so, you know, he thought that, that was somehow a reason for you not to do it. ZADROZNY: Right, I think you were right on point. I mean, he is -- he is at the front now and these are the things you`re going to focus on. We`re going to focus on every word that he says and we`re going to look into his facts and see what the record says about where he stands on this issue. O`DONNELL: And Beth, you know, I agree with you. This book, Harry Hurt`s book is something I remember. And so, it`s one of the things that I had in mind when I kept saying he is not going to run for president because he`s not going to want this story out there, because this is the stuff that comes up especially if you float up to the lead in the polls. FOUHY: Right, and in the past, I mean, he`s -- he -- Donald Trump has been so brilliant about floating the idea that he would run. Teasing it out there right up to the last second and then saying nobody is going to go back to my show, I got to go back to "Celebrity -- O`DONNELL: Yes -- FOUHY: Apprentice". So, the whole thing was a fantastic PR move around his show. So, now he actually did it. He stepped into it and he now -- he is realizing it`s different doing it as opposed to staying out of it. O`DONNELL: Nick, where are we in the Trump bubble? That`s the question everybody ask everyday, where does the arc of this thing go? How long does it hang on? CONFESSORE: Think you know, enough for a while I think. He actually speaks to a real segment of that party that wants the guy who`s going to talk like a real person and take it to the other team, right? Who enjoys bombast, who enjoys the fight and the conflict. There is an appetite and audience for that. It`s not that big, it`s a quarter of the primary according to that poll, but it`s there. O`DONNELL: But it`s also Beth, a very specific issue. It is I`m going to build a wall, I am the anti-Mexico candidate, that`s clearly in that 24 percent. FOUHY: Oh, that`s one of the things, but think of all the other things he`s saying to this group that Nick is referring to enjoys. Things like Hillary Clinton is the worst Secretary of State ever. I am an incredibly successful person. I mean, he`s projecting this success and money and taking it to the other team like Nick said, and naming names. Most candidates just kind of -- to kind of dog whistle around the issues. Trump says it right out loud and there`s a segment of that -- of that -- of that voting base that really likes that. O`DONNELL: All right, that`s the last Trump word for tonight. Beth -- ZADROZNY: Oh -- O`DONNELL: Fouhy, Nicholas Confessore and Brandy Zadrozny, thank you all very much for joining me tonight, I really appreciate it. Coming up, John Kerry testified to Congress about the Iran deal today, Valerie Plame will join us with her view of that deal. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. MICHAEL MCCAUL, (R) TEXAS, REPRESENTATIVE: I think, you know, obviously, those running for president have to say outrageous things to get attention, I guess and try to get in the top 10 to be in the debates. But, I think we need to keep this rational debate on the merits of the deal and not engage in a bunch of inflammatory rhetoric. (END VIDEO CLIP) LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST OF "THE LAST WORD" PROGRAM: That was the Republican Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee today. Here is what he was talking about. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DONALD TRUMP, 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And, if they were a stock, I would buy so much of Iran right now. (END VIDEO CLIP) (BEGIN VIDEOC CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE SPEAKER: This is the most dangerous, irresponsible step I have ever seen in the history of watching the Middle East. (END VIDEO CLIP) (BEGIN VIDEOC CLIP) TED CRUZ, 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If this deal goes through, the Obama Administration will become quite literally the world`s leading financier of radical Islamic terrorism. (END VIDEO CLIP) (BEGIN VIDEOC CLIP) MIKE HUCKABEE, 2016 U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This president`s foreign policy is the most feckless in American history. He is so na‹ve, he would trust the Iranians and he would take the Israelis and basically march them to the door of the oven. (END VIDEO CLIP) (BEGIN VIDEOC CLIP) MATT LAUER, NBC HOST: As the president of the United States would you use the phrase march the Israelis to the door of the oven? UNIDENTIFIED MALE SPEAKER: Yes, I would. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Global Zero, a group dedicated to the elimination of nuclear weapons has produced a video starring among others Jack Black, Morgan freeman And Valerie Plame. The video makes the point that the only alternative to the deal just might be war with Iran. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) VALERIE PLAME, FORMER CIA COVERT OPERATIONS OFFICER: Once a war begins the chances of Iran developing a nuclear weapon would only increase. JACK BLACK, ACTOR/COMEDIAN: Wait a second. That is Valerie Plame. Valerie Plane is in this living video. Valerie, do you know that because you are a spy. PLAME: I am not going to answer that question, Jack. MORGAN FREEMAN, ACTOR: I think what Valerie is saying is that the agreement currently on the table is the best way to ensure that Iran does not build up (EXPLETIVE WORD) bomb. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Up next, Valerie Plame and James Fallows will join us. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE: Can I just say something? You know, we hear these complaints. We hear, "Well, this agreement does not do this." "Does not stop their terror." "This agreement is going to give them some money." "This agreement is going to do this." What this agreement is supposed to do is stop them from having a nuclear weapon. Now, I want to hear somebody tell me, how they are going to do that without a disagreement. (END VIDEOC LIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now is Valerie Plame, former CIA covert operations officer and a global zero leader now. And, James Fallows, National Correspondent for the Atlantic. Valerie Plame, your reaction to the Iran deal as it has been negotiated. VALERIE PLAME, FORMER CIA COVERT OPERATIONS OFFICER: Hi. Good evening, Lawrence. It is a pleasure to be with you. I am fully supportive because I see this as a very stark option between war on one hand, peace on the other. It is not a perfect deal. Everyone has acknowledged that but it is the best deal that we are going to get. And, that is why I was involved with the global zero video. It is not often that you would get someone like Jack Black and nor in the same video. But, the point was trying to get across, how important it is, because the only other alternative is war, which the pentagon generals have said is only going to set the Iran nuclear program back two to three years at the most. So, I come down on the side of saying, let us give this a try. O`DONNELL: I want to listen to something that Republican front running presidential candidate Donald Trump said tonight on Fox News about Israel`s influence in the United States Senate. Let us listen to what he said about that. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: You are assuming it is going to pass, which everybody tells me it is going to pass. What I am surprised at, is that I actually thought that Israel had more power over some of these guys like Senator Schumer. He is rolling over for Obama. I know him very well. And, he is rolling over for Obama and that actually surprises me. You would think that Israel would put tremendous pressure on Senator Schumer not to allow this deal to happen, because he could kill the deal. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: James Fallows, your reaction to that reading of Israel`s influence on the senate. JAMES FALLOWS, JOURNALIST: One of this many things we are going to hear only from Donald Trump in this campaign. I think something interesting is in the last week or so, since the president`s defense of the deal in his press conference, you have seen more and more sort of coalition of forces where you have the democrats pretty much united by him. You have essentially every former national security official military or civilian of the United saying, this is a good deal. You have all of America`s normal allies plus Russia and China saying this is the best way to go. On the other hand, you have the GOP Congressional Leadership, Bhoener, et cetera, who have invited Netanyahu to speak. You have all of the candidates we heard a few minutes ago with their over the top rhetoric and you have essentially the government of Israel. Prime Minister Netanyahu has said he is against the deal. I think it has become stark in that way. The president` -- the calm tone of the president`s defense and the humorous tone of his wonderful video that Valerie Plame is part of is contrasted with the increasingly shrill tone that probably reached its peak with Mike Huckabee. PLAME: What I -- can I jump in? O`DONNELL: Go ahead, Valerie. Yes, go ahead. PLAME: Let me just add, important to what he was saying is that there is - - and this does not get much play but there is broad bipartisan consensus among nuclear policy experts. And, I would not say anyone in the GOP presidential field falls in to that category that agree that this is a good deal. The nuclear experts say, "Yeah, this is the best way to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, bringing them back in to the international community, and then we can begin to actually exert some leverage over their behavior. O`DONNELL: Well, nuclear expert Donald Trump spoke on the technicals of this tonight on Fox News saying that, "If we cannot get in to every sight that we want to examine immediately, then the deal is not any good." Let us listen to that. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: To have almost like a month to do what they can do nowadays with movement and getting things nice and clean and then they will paint the floor, nice battleship gray and everything will look beautiful and you say, "Oh, gee! Nothing is happening here. Give me a break. It is ridiculous." (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: James Fallows, Donald Trump, who has a pretty big microphone these days is telling America that the Iranians will paint the floor in those 24 days and the nuclear scientists will not be able to figure out what has been going on here. FALLOWS: Well, you remember the president is equipped in the news conference, saying these are not things you can kind of wheel in and out on dollies. These are huge primitive establishments. And, of course, the nuclear experts from U.S. and elsewhere, who were negotiating a deal. I think it is also worth spelling out if the deal does not go through, what will happen? The reason why people say it will be war, because if the U.S. Congress turns this down, Russia is not going to agree with the GOP. China is not going to agree with the GOP. They are going to reduce the sanctions. Iran will proceed much more quickly than they could do under this deal, and that is when people who are alarmed by Iran`s progress will start to say, "Well, gee why could not we stop this with negotiations and we will have to think of military means which are, of course, a doomed avenue." O`DONNELL: And, Valerie Plame, give us your view of how a targeted military strike would work just trying to go after nuclear facilities in Iran. PLAME: Look, I am not a military expert. But, from everything I have read and understand, and from my experience in the CIA working this target, it would be very limited effectiveness and that is what the pentagon says, as well. The Iran has put their nuclear facilities in densely populated civilian areas. And, it would only set them back by two with or three years. So, this deal is our best chance right now. I believe that there is a moment in time now. This is an opportunity. And, while those that are opposed to it have said, "Well, you know, this means that Iran will be able to build a nuclear bomb within 10 to 15 years." Well, anything can happen. The region is so volatile. And, if we do not do this, then for sure we will see a nuclear Iran. O`DONNELL: James -- FALLOWS: On this point, 11 years ago we actually ran a war game at the Atlantic saying, in 2004 was the U.S. then able to take out Iran`s facilities with a nuclear strike and the conclusion was even then we could not. It was impossible 11 yea1 years ago, it is entirely lunatic now. You can go back to cover story in the Atlantic in December 2004 to see all the details. O`DONNELL: That is right. I always go to read about the future. Valerie Plame and James Fallows, thank you both very much for joining me tonight. Thank you. Up next, officials released more video of Sandra Bland after she arrived at that jail in Texas where she was later found dead. And, later, the Minnesota dentist facing international outrage for allegedly killing a lion for sport in Zimbabwe. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: Officials in Texas released new video today showing Sandra Bland`s arrival at the Waller County Jail. In the video, Sandra Bland is seen wearing the same dress she had on during the dash cam video of her arrest. She is escorted by a female officer out of the car. Roughly seven hours of video also shows Sandra Bland in the intake room with the initial arresting trooper, Brian Encinia, a jail employee and the female police officer, who escorted Sandra Bland out of the car at the jail. The video also shows Sandra Bland having her mug shot taken. Her time in a holding cell and making what officials say was at least six phone calls at the booking desk outside of her jail cell. There was no video of Sandra Bland in her jail cell, however. Sandra Bland was arrested during a traffic stop for failure to signal for a lane change on July 10th. She was found dead in her cell, three days later. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TREY DUHON, WALLER COUNTY JUDGE: There is no footage that indicates to me that Ms. Bland was treated unfairly or was mishandled or mistreated in any way shape or form while she was in the Waller County Jail. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Coming up, this is what Newt Gingrich tweeted today about Zimbabwe`s most famous lion. "The entire team that killed the Lion, Cecil, should go to jail including the Minneapolis dentist." That story is next. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) O`DONNELL: Today, a Minnesota dentist admitted that he killed a popular and protected Lion in Zimbabwe. The dentist Walter Palmer is accused of luring the Lion, known as Cecil, from a protected park in Zimbabwe before killing the Lion on private land. This is not the first time that Walter Palmer has been accused of using illegal methods to hunt an animal. 2008 court records show Walter Palmer pleaded guilty to making a false statement to federal officials after he killed a black bear outside of an authorized zone during a guided hunt in Wisconsin. Dr. Palmer was sentenced to a year probation for that crime. NBC`s Kevin Tibbles has this report. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) KEVIN TIBBLES, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Cecil was the pride of Zimbabwe`s big cats with a recognizable black mane and relaxed nature. He was a tourist favorite. But, earlier this month Cecil was killed, lured from the safety of a game preserve say conservation officials. Hit first with a bow and arrow, finished off 40 hours later with a gun, then skinned. His head removed. The killing has sparked global outrage. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JEFF FLOCKEN, DIRECTOR FOR THE INTERNATIONAL FUND FOR ANIMAL WELLFARE: In the big picture, what does it say we are killing lion for sport when we know that they are threatened with extinction. It is an animal in fierce decline. (END VIDEO CLIP) TIBBLES: Today, it was learned the man responsible is a dentist from Minnesota. 55-year-old Walter Palmer, a lifelong hunter. In a statement today, Palmer said he hired professional guides and that they secured all proper permits. Adding, "I had no idea, the lion I took was a known local favorite." But in Zimbabwe, the National Parks Authority says two men with Palmer have been charged with poaching. This is where most of us get up close to the big cats, at the zoo. But, some hunters are willing to pay thousands for the chance to kill one on Safari. Some reports suggest Palmer paid as much as $54,000. Palmer said I deeply regret that my pursuit of an activity I love and practice responsibly and legally resulted in the taking of this lion. And, adds that he will cooperate with any investigation. Kevin Tibbles, NBC News, Chicago. (END VIDEOTAPE) O`DONNELL: When we come back, will Walter Palmer be prosecuted? (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) EMMANUEL FUNDIRA: The absence of Cecil is a dfisaster in terms of the disappointment it has caused in his absence in the industry. We have since suspended the professional hunter from our association. They are no longer a member. We have also suspended Bush Man Safaris, who are also involved in this particular illegal act. (END VIDEO CLIP) O`DONNELL: Joining us now Ted Simon. He is an attorney and an extradition expert. Ted Simon, what do you see here in terms of extradition to Zimbabwe? THEODORE SIMON, ATTORNEY: Well, I think we have to understand the basics. And an extradition treaty, and this one is a bilateral treaty between two countries. It is an agreement that establishes the procedures and the rules and the necessary documents that one country, the requesting country, which if this gentleman is charged would come from Zimbabwe to the request of the country or the United States. So as far as I know, this particular -- Mr. Palmer has not, as yet, been charged. So, if he is charged with a crime, then it will be necessary to send those necessary documents over to the U.S. and I can explain what those documents are, but the key one will be -- they have to provide facts and circumstances that are reasonably trustworthy that would warrant a prudent person in to believing that a crime was committed and he committed it. It is not enough to simply say this was an unpopular event. True, it is an unpopular event, but they are going to have to prove that he committed a crime with the requisite intent. He has already admitted that he has done it. The question is whether he did it with the requisite bad intent. O`DONNELL: And, whose decision is it to determine his extradition fate? SIMON: Well, first the government of Zimbabwe would have to issue an arrest warrant. That would be sent over to the United States, and then it would be with evaluated. They would have to provide the facts of the case, the procedural history. O`DONNELL: But who makes the decision on it when they have that? SIMON: First the justice department would evaluate it. If they thought it was adequate, they would send it to the local U.S. attorney, who would then issue an arrest warrant and then a federal court judge would make the ultimate decision. But, while I have identified one aspect of extrajudicial, it is a fairly complicated procedure and there are many other possible defenses. So, it is understandable, that this event is reprehensible. It is morally outrageous for most people whether or not it was done legally or illegally. The real question here is not how horrendous this type of crime is, but whether or not this individual committed it with the requisite intent. O`DONNELL: Now, there is also the possibility that some are raising tonight that he could be prosecuted in the United States for violation of what is called the travel act. And, that would be in the event that evidence is developed indicating he went there with the intent of committing crime in Zimbabwe including possibly bribery in order to get out this lion. SIMON: Well, obviously, we do not have the facts. Theoretically, it is possible to be charged with extraterritorial crimes. That is things that happen in a foreign country, but you are charged in the United States. It does happen. However, I do not think that is his primary problem at this point. The real primary issue is whether or not he will ultimately be charged in Zimbabwe. What is the crime he is charged with? What are the elements? Even in Zimbabwe, one has -- all the elements must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. The question is whether they can provide those reasonably trustworthy facts that would justify his committal for trial in the United States if the events happen here. It is likely he committed than not that he committed the elements of defense with the requisite bad intent? O`DONNELL: Ted Simon, thank you very much for your guidance on this tonight. I appreciate it. Chris Hayes is up next. END