IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

The Last Word With Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 12/9/2015

Guests: Jonathan Chait, Kurt Andersen, Hillary Mann Leverett, Javier Lesaca, Cecile Richards, Janai Nelson

Show: THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL Date: December 9, 2015 Guest: Jonathan Chait, Kurt Andersen, Hillary Mann Leverett, Javier Lesaca, Cecile Richards, Janai Nelson

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC: That does it for us tonight, we will see you again tomorrow, now it`s time for THE LAST WORD with Lawrence O`Donnell, good evening Lawrence.

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, HOST, THE LAST WORD: Rachel, you know, how these, you know, two minutes before the show go for me.

I come in here, I sit down, someone sticks a thing in my ear, I start to hear things and other people are saying other things to me.

I`m hearing you and there`s all these -- so I hear somebody wet his pants and an Admiral and naked --

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: And that`s all I`ve got. Because --

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Other people are doing these other things.

MADDOW: Naked --

O`DONNELL: Don`t do -- Rachel, don`t do this to me, OK? Can you just do -- can you just do something real straight stuff in the last 90 seconds of your show?

MADDOW: No, as long as there are pants-wetting Admirals falling off bar stools, no, I can`t, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Right, OK --

MADDOW: All right --

O`DONNELL: That`s what it was, all right, thank you Rachel --


MADDOW: Thanks Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Well, Washington Republicans are now officially in panic mode that Donald Trump is going to destroy their party while Trump continues tonight to tell more lies than any of his compliant interviewers can keep up with.


BILL O`REILLY, FOX NEWS: I don`t think you thought through the unintended consequences of banning an entire religion from coming to the United States.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Trump`s proposal echoing around the globe today.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is profoundly wrong about the contribution of American Muslims and indeed British Muslims.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Prime Minister Netanyahu rejects Donald Trump`s recent remarks about Muslims.

JIMMY KIMMEL, COMEDIAN & TELEVISION HOST: Even former Vice President Dick Cheney said the ban goes against everything we stand for and believe in. And this is a guy who shot one of his friends.


So --

CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC: Sixty eight percent of Trump supporters say they would follow him from the party if he ran on a third party ticket.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you going to break this pledge?

DONALD TRUMP, CHAIRMAN & PRESIDENT, TRUMP ORGANIZATIONS & FOUNDER, TRUMP ENTERTAINMENT RESORTS: If the playing field is not level, then certainly all options are open.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Party leaders fear a surging Donald Trump could cost him control of Congress.

EUGENE JOSEPH DIONNE, COLUMNIST, WASHINGTON POST: The Republicans are in a box. They really need to distance themselves from Trump.

JEB BUSH, FORMER FLORIDA GOVERNOR: He`s not a serious candidate. He`s inflammatory.

CARLY FIORINA, FORMER BUSINESS EXECUTIVE: I do not believe Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He ain`t going to win, it`s not going to happen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So says the candidates who are not leading in the polls.

TRUMP: This was not supposed to happen to them.

O`REILLY: All right --

TRUMP: The establishment --


Is very upset.


O`DONNELL: Republicans running for re-election in the house and Senate are now running scared of Donald Trump.

The "Associated Press" reports, "Donald Trump`s plan to ban Muslims from entering the United States is shoving the Republican Party to the edge of chaos.

Abruptly pitting GOP leaders against their own presidential frontrunner and jeopardizing the party`s long time drive to attract minorities."

Now "POLITICO" is reporting that Republican members of the house say Donald Trump could jeopardize their control of Congress in 2016.

Representative Greg Walden; he is the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, his job is to elect Republican members of the house.

He said this, "this is not what we`re about as a party and this is not what we`re about as a country and we cannot yield to this. It puts certainly competitive seats in jeopardy."

We`ll have a much more difficult time." His Deputy Chairman Steve Stieber(ph) said, "it would be devastating to our attempts to grow our majority and would cost us seats that our people that couldn`t win if he was our nominee."

Republican Charlie Dent who represents a swing district in Pennsylvania said, "are these comments helping us as a party? No.

Running political campaigns and winning elections is an exercise in addition, not subtraction when comments are made that are so divisive, that alienate women, Hispanics, the disabled, Muslims, it just simply limits your ability to win. It`s that simple."

Last night, Republican cheerleader Bill O`Reilly said this.


O`REILLY: The latest comments on Muslims have pretty much sealed his doom within the party itself.

That the chieftains who run the party who are loathed by many Republican conservatives, they loathe them, OK, will say there`s no way we`re going to give this guy the nomination.


O`DONNELL: And tonight, Bill O`Reilly gave Donald Trump a friendly forum to once again offer his empty threat of running as an independent.


O`REILLY: If they deny the nomination to you which is very possible. Are you going to run on a third party ticket, thereby handing the election to Hillary Clinton?

TRUMP: I think that I will get the delegates, I`m winning in Iowa big, I`m winning in South Carolina --

O`REILLY: If you don`t --

TRUMP: I`m winning in New Hampshire big --

O`DONNELL: If you --


O`DONNELL: Don`t, I`ll --

TRUMP: If I`m treated fairly, I would never do it. If I`m not treated fairly, I might very well do it.


O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Kurt Andersen, host of public radio "Studio 360" and Jonathan Chait, columnist for "New York Magazine" joining us from Washington.

Jonathan, can you smell the panic down there in Washington?

JONATHAN CHAIT, COLUMNIST, NEW YORK MAGAZINE: There is a lot of panic down here in Washington.

But I do have to disagree with you about one point. I don`t think it`s necessarily an empty threat for Donald Trump.

Donald Trump does not care about the Republican Party. Donald Trump cares about Donald Trump. And for whatever reason he wants to run for president, and that reason is hard to discern.

There`s no -- there`s no particular barrier that`s going to stop him from running as an independent if that`s what he wants to do.

O`DONNELL: Well, the math is going to stop him, let`s put it up on the screen. He`s -- because Donald can`t do math, actually, he`s very proud and tweeting about a poll that shows that if he runs as an independent, he would get just about what Ralph Nader got as an independent.

Donald tweeted very happily that 68 percent of his supporters would go with him if he ran as an independent -- 68 percent. Now, only 30 percent of voters identify as Republicans.

So, 68 percent of the 30 percent is 8.4 percent -- actually, Donald Trump`s share, let`s start back where his share is, let`s call it 30 percent of the 30 percent, OK?

CHAIT: Right --

O`DONNELL: Twenty eight percent of 30 is -- that takes him down to around 8.4 percent. Right now, he commands less support in polls than Bernie Sanders does.

He commands less than 10 percent of the vote nationally, and if he goes independent, he would get a whopping 5.7 percent of the vote if all 68 percent of those people went with him. And --

CHAIT: But he`s not going to win as a Republican nominee either, so he`s clearly irrational at some level. So, I wouldn`t assume that he is aware of the math that you`re saying or accept it as valid.

KURT ANDERSEN, RADIO HOST: And by the way, somewhere between Ralph Nader`s 2 percent and Ross Perot`s 21 percent, give or take. There are independents.

There are people who don`t call themselves Republicans who would certainly vote for Donald Trump as a --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ANDERSEN: Independent candidate. You know, I certainly -- if he ran, certainly can see him getting enough to ensure that the Republican candidate doesn`t win.

O`DONNELL: Well, but then again, what he would run against, Jonathan, which he`s not running against now, is a -- is a very strong argument that I do believe would persuade many of those 68 percent who say they`d vote for him.

That a --

CHAIT: Sure --

O`DONNELL: Vote for Donald Trump is a vote for Hillary Clinton. And they`ve got the 2000 election with Ralph Nader and Al Gore and George W. Bush to point to, to prove it.

CHAIT: Right, but he`s an irrational crazy man. Nothing he`s doing is putting him on the path to winning the presidency anyway.

So, obviously, he has reasons other than having some rational desire to become president to do what he`s doing. And maybe it`s to get attention.

Maybe it`s to build some weird brand or satisfy some ego maniacal desire. But I wouldn`t assume -- but just because something is irrational Donald Trump won`t do it.

Because that supposition has been disproven over and over again.

O`DONNELL: OK, that is a very strong point. But I`m placing my bet tonight that he will not run as an independent.


O`DONNELL: I don`t -- all I can do is bet in response to that, Jonathan, I have no come back to that --

CHAIT: All right --

O`DONNELL: The irrationality point. Now, let`s listen to the way Donald Trump handles interviewers. They all -- they all suffer this.

They cannot possibly keep up with the lies. Let`s listen to the way it typically works.


TRUMP: You know, when I came out against illegal immigration, everybody thought the same thing. Two weeks later, everybody was on my side including the members of my own party.


O`DONNELL: So that`s it. He says things like that on his way to something else, he is saying it tonight on television. He says tonight on television, everyone agrees with me.

And he says that on "Cnn", no one on "Cnn" objects to that and he keeps steam-rolling these constant lies that the compliant interviewers just let him roll right by them.

ANDERSEN: And he has this huckster`s salesman`s ability to do that.

O`DONNELL: And the speed of the huckster, yes --

ANDERSEN: And the sheer shrewdness as the economist magazine calls him. I mean, what I would say though about Donald Trump, not everybody agrees with me and obviously all of the major figures in the Republican Party are criticizing him for the Muslim comment.

Let`s not forget that only a few weeks ago, 30 Republican governors said we`re not going to take Syrian refugees into our states.

Donald Trump saying I don`t want any Muslims coming in is just a sort of advanced version of the same thing.

So the -- oh, we`re shocked, we`re shocked, this is hateful and unacceptable in our party, I don`t entirely buy it.

O`DONNELL: Let`s listen to Jeb Bush in New Hampshire today.


BUSH: It`s not going to help the security of Israel. It`s not going to help the security of the United States.

It pushes away allies that are necessary and essential to destroy ISIS and to bring about security in the Middle East.

Mr. Trump is not a serious person. He`s not a serious candidate. He`s inflammatory, and he makes the task for the next president a lot harder.


O`DONNELL: Jonathan, is this -- is that one of the final statements of the Bush campaign, or is that the Bush campaign finding its way to leverage against Donald Trump?

CHAIT: No, I think it`s more of the former -- Jeb Bush has never had much top offer to his party. He just reminds people of the last time Republicans held the White House which was a disaster.

It`s -- he`s got the worst branding you could possibly have in the form of his last name. And it`s really -- there`s really no escaping that problem.

I mean, but the larger problem that people who agree with Jeb Bush has is that most people on this point agree with Donald Trump.

A poll came out today and found that two-thirds of Republicans agree with Trump`s insane proposal to exclude Muslim immigrants. So, he`s got the lion share of the party and the rest of them are all fighting for the minority share.

O`DONNELL: And to your point, Kurt, two-thirds of Republicans agree with Donald Trump, once you get out of the Republican Party, most people don`t agree with Donald Trump.

And that`s of course the Republican Party. Is that the party and its voters are completely out of sync with the rest of the country and with the winning formula nationally.

ANDERSEN: Which is why they don`t elect presidents and it`s looking more like today depending on who they nominate. That they won`t win the presidency this time.

Which, of course, serves them, you know, some ultimate sense. If you`re a party that whose basic principle is, I don`t want the federal government to work very well --

O``DONNELL: Right --

ANDERSEN: They got it.


ANDERSEN: They got it made, it`s a win-win for them. And speaking of polls, Jonathan mentioned the polls, there was a "Fox News" poll today in South Carolina about the Republican nominees.

In the two days and the polls straddled the anti-Muslim comments Donald Trump made in South Carolina before the speech, 30 percent.

He was in first place with 30 percent of the Republicans in South Carolina. In the two days of polling afterwards, he had 38 percent of the poll.

O`DONNELL: Yes, and Jonathan, I imagine if we were in -- if it was 1958 and it was a candidate up there saying that, you know, of course these people should not have the right to vote, that same thing would happen --

CHAIT: Right --

O`DONNELL: In South Carolina poll.

CHAIT: That`s absolutely right. I mean, this is -- this is a depressing series of events that we`re seeing play out.

But I think Trump has really identified some of the strong passions in his party in a way that other figures just have not.

O`DONNELL: Jonathan Chait, thank you very much for joining us, giving us the panic from Washington, thank you very much.

CHAIT: Thank you --

O`DONNELL: Coming up, inside the Islamic State, the recruiting videos are not what you think they are. We will show you a young Canadian and an Australian who recruit for ISIS online.

And Cecile Richards will join us with her reaction to the outburst in a Colorado courtroom today when Robert Dear suddenly confessed to murdering three people in the Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood.


O`DONNELL: A new WMUR University of New Hampshire-"Cnn" poll finds that 50 percent of New Hampshire voters say they support Bernie Sanders.

That`s up from 46 percent in September, 40 percent say they support Hillary Clinton and that is up from 30 percent in September.

Strangely in the same poll of New Hampshire voters, 70 percent of those same people say that Hillary Clinton has the best chance to win the presidency and 17 percent say Bernie Sanders does.

Coming up, new details about the terrorists who struck in San Bernardino last week.



SEN. MAZIE HIRONO (D), HAWAII: What does defeating ISIL look like? Including the -- preventing the ability of them to encourage a lone-wolf factors across the world?

ASH CARTER, DEFENSE SECRETARY, UNITED STATES: Yes, it means destroying their organization, their leadership, their ability to control territory, their ability to have a source of revenue and their ability to claim that they`re anything but a bunch of barbarians -- their end state.

That`s what eliminating them and that`s the end state that we`re seeking in Iraq and Syria.


O`DONNELL: In Senate hearing today, Defense Secretary Ash Carter agreed with the assessment, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff made two weeks ago that ISIS is "not contained."


CARTER: Chairman Dunford and I recognize that in principle, there are alternatives to the strategic approach we have adopted to drive ISIL from Syrian and Iraqi territory.

Including the introduction of a significant foreign ground force, hypothetically international, but including U.S. forces.

While we certainly have the capability to furnish a U.S. component to such a ground force, we have not recommended this course of action.

By seeming to Americanize the conflicts in Iraq and Syria, we could well turn those fighting ISIL or inclined to resist their rule into fighting us instead.


O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Hillary Mann Leverett; a former U.S. State Department and National Security Council Middle East specialist under President George W. Bush and President Bill Clinton.

Hillary Mann Leverett, what is your reaction to this discussion now about ground troops and what we have to do against the Islamic State in Syria?

HILLARY MANN LEVERETT, FORMER UNITED STATES STATE DEPARTMENT & NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL MIDDLE EAST SPECIALIST: Unfortunately, it seems like more of the same. This administration like the prior administration are seeking to double down on failed strategies.

We know for looking at the record over more than ten years that introducing more troops to serve, to drive recruitment to al Qaeda, ISIS now and other types of organizations.

We know that supplying more weapons both to, you know, various militias on the ground and to some of our so-called allies like the Saudis only serves to further militarize these situations leading to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of civilians.

So we know these strategies have failed over the course of more than ten years. But like the prior administration, this administration is yet again doubling down on this failed strategy.

O`DONNELL: Let`s listen to what General Odierno said on "Morning Joe" this morning.


RAYMOND ODIERNO, RETIRED UNITED STATES ARMY GENERAL: Well, you can`t defeat ISIS or destroy ISIS without having people on the ground -- thousand special ops?

I`ll let the people on the ground determine numbers. I think it`s probably around that range. But there comes a point where you might have to put -- special ops can only do so much.

So, you might have to put some conventional force. But I`m not talking 20,000, 30,000, 40,000. I am in the 1,000 to 2,000 range to get done, at least initially what we have to do.


O`DONNELL: And Kurt Andersen, so you -- let`s say you put in 2,000 and let`s say you get done initially what you have to do as the General would say. How many do you have to leave there for how long?

How many decades in order to maintain whatever it is you`ve achieved?

ANDERSEN: Well, that`s the problem that we`ve never faced -- our American empire of this ongoing need for occupation.

And, of course, in the present day in that region, we don`t have the luxury even of saying, oh, we`ll stay here and our people won`t be killed and there won`t be an insurgency.

I mean, you know, so that`s the problem. I mean, you can -- all of these - - as far as I can see and tell, the military effort, which me -- I`m not going to gain, say military people might say that 3,000 U.S. troops will solve the problem temporarily.

But it will solve the problem temporarily. And also when you have the sort of franchise spores of the people in San Bernardino and the people in Paris, are they going to go away simply because you have a -- you take Raqqah and you have a military defeat in Syria and Iraq? I`m not sure.

O`DONNELL: Hillary, address that point. What do you -- what do you think at this point? Is the connection or the need for a connection, if any, direct connection between what we saw happen in San Bernardino and what`s happening on the ground with the Islamic State?

MANN LEVERETT: Well, I mean, what we know is that putting more military force into these -- into these conflicts.

Whether it`s 1,000 troops or 2,000 troops or like George, you know, George W. Bush did, more than a 100,000 troops in Iraq.

It makes this problem worse. And worse in now maybe the most dangerous way for us here in the United States.

Worse in terms of these organizations getting stronger, not just where their nexus is located for now, Syria and Iraq.

But far further than that, whether it`s Libya, Egypt, Afghanistan, Yemen and now here in California as well as in Paris.

The situation gets worse and worse as we militarily double down on what we know are found strategies.

The one thing that we`re most reluctant to try, but works the most effectively is conflict resolution, diplomacy, engagement.

Secretary of State Kerry did that incredibly well with Iran. And I think that he may be on the path to doing that with Syria. But that`s the one thing that doesn`t get discussed.

As there is this debate between the ranges from A to B, whether it`s 1,000 troops or 10,000 troops.

The real debate needs to be in terms of conflict resolution, diplomacy, what do we need to get this conflict resolved? That`s the one thing that would drain the swamp within which ISIS exists and feeds.

O`DONNELL: Quickly, how long a process is that, that conflict resolution?

MANN LEVERETT: Well, it`s hard -- of course it`s impossible to predict. But Secretary of State Kerry did in two years what people thought could never happen with Iran.

We have -- we have real conflict resolution, and we`re on -- we`re on the road to real realignment, if not fall out -- we`ll approach more with that country.

These things can be done. It was conflict resolution in the neighbor of Syria, Lebanon, that also experiences civil war. It was resolved in something called the (INAUDIBLE) agreement.

We`ve had conflict resolution incredibly tough places before. This can happen -- it can happen here and I think the one silver-lining is that Secretary of State Kerry is working and seemingly lock step with the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

And I think over the next few weeks, we may see some important movement toward that political process. It`s not going to be any kind of magical silver bullet. But certainly sending in thousands more troops isn`t either.

O`DONNELL: Hillary Mann Leverett and Kurt Andersen, thank you both for joining us tonight.


O`DONNELL: Up next, Islamic State recruiting videos. I actually watched them for the first time today. I`d never seen an Islamic State video before.

They were nothing like what I expected to see, we will show you how the Islamic State lures young people to their cause.


O`DONNELL: ISIS has released 1,015 videos in just the last two years and at least 37 of those videos are in English. Now, these videos are ISIS propaganda, of course, we know that.

But it is important to show you some of these videos tonight to help you understand the message that ISIS is using to try to radicalize youth around the world. This is a brief portion of one of those videos.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Islam, I was like any other regular Canadian. I watched hockey, I went to the college in the Summer time, I love to fish, I wanted to go hunting, I like outdoors, I liked sports.


O`DONNELL: The FBI director said this today about the radicalization of Syed Farooq and Tashfeen Malik who murdered 14 people in San Bernardino last week.


JAMES COMEY, DIRECTOR, FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION: San Bernardino involved two killers who were radicalized for quite a long time before their attack.

In fact, our investigation to date which I can only say so much about at this point indicates that they were actually radicalized before they started courting or dating each other online.

And online as late as -- as early as the end of 2013, they were talking to each other about Jihad and martyrdom before they became engaged and then married and lived together in the United States.


O`DONNELL: Nbc News has learned that Syed Farooq and Tashfeen Malik left evidence that they were contemplating attacks on other targets in Southern California.

Although, it is unclear how far long any of that planning actually was. One source said one of the targets considered might have been a university building.

Two sources said possible targets could have included a building and other gatherings possibly in public areas.

The information came from the electronic media left behind by Farooq and Malik on their smashed phones and computers.

Today, the third attacker of the -- at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris was identified as 23-year-old Foued Mohamed-Aggad; he was a French citizen, born in France.

He was identified by police after his mother got a text message announcing his death as a martyr. She then gave Paris police DNA sample which confirmed that he was killed inside the Bataclan.

His father said to "Le Parisien"; a French newspaper, "what kind of human being could do what he did? If I had known he would do something like this, I would have killed him."

Joining us now is Javier Lesaca. He is a visiting scholar at George Washington University. Javier, you have been studying these ISIS recruiting videos. I just want to show the audience a little bit more of that one that we began with, which is a Canadian trying, no doubt, to convince other Canadians to come to join him. Let us listen to more of this.


ANDRE POULIN, CANADIAN FIGHTER: Mujahedin are regular people too. You know, we get married. We have families. We have lives, you know. We have lives just like any other soldier and any other army. We have lives outside of our job.

You know, life in Canada was good. I had money. I had good family. But, at the end of the day, it is still dar al-kufr and at the end of the day, you cannot obey Allah fully as you can by living in a Muslim country and an Islamic state.


O`DONNELL: Javier, talk about the effectiveness of a video like that and its target audience?

JAVIER LESACA, GWU SCHOOL OF MEDIA AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS: Hi, Lawrence, good night and thanks for letting me explain this research. Well, I mean, first of all, I want to make clear that nobody became a terrorist by watching all these videos.

But, at the same time, it is important to take into consideration that since ISIS established in Syria and Iraq, they have released 1,015 videos and have created a whole network of communication including 36 other research producers.

So, they know that by connecting and talking and communicating, directly with their target audiences, they can make a difference. And, they can win the hearts and minds of the target audiences. So, all these videos, what they pretend to do is to call attention -- is to be the first step in the radicalization process.

I mean, they want to be in touch with all these young people in the western world, which are completely alienated from the nation states and that by watching this video for the first time, they feel the necessity or they feel, you know, the curiosity to learn more about all this movement.

It looks like a social gradual movement trying to fight capitalism, trying to fight the international system. They present themselves as a movement that is helping Muslims all around the war. So, it is like the first step of radicalization. Sorry.

O`DONNELL: Go ahead. I watched videos today that include executions and all sorts of mayhem and violence. And, in those videos, there is constant references like brothers rise up. They love to die is one of the things that they proclaim very happily on that kind of video.

But, I want to show more of the video that is so surprising. This one is a video of an Australian doctor, who has gone to work for the Islamic state and it starts off, you would have no idea that you are watching something from the Islamic state when it starts. Let us watch this.


My name is Abu Yusef. I am one of the medical team here in Raqqa. I am from Australia to the Islamic state to come and live under the Khalifa. And, I saw this as part of my Jihad for Islam to help the Muslims in the area that I could, which is the medical field.


O`DONNEL: And, he then goes on to very explicitly ask people to come and join, he says, they do not actually really need any medical supplies. They just need more medical personnel.

LESACA: Yes. I mean this video is very clear example of a technique of the Islamic Statement for equipment. Only 16 percent of all the videos are about executions. The rest of the videos are much more like those videos of the Canadian boy and Australian boy sowing the ISIS and sowing this terrorist movement, not a as terrorist movement but as an any other NGO. Especially those messages delivered to western audiences.

They are sowing themselves that he is an NGO, that I mean a blue eyed, blond boy from Australia has travelled to Syria in order to join this NGO. So, they are cementing the messages, and they know perfectly which audience are they talking to and which kind of message to engage with them.

So, it is very sophisticated. And, I mean the contra-narrative, they take into consideration all these segmentation of audiences and all these variety of thematic. The Islamic state - talking about the execution. It is only 16 percent of those videos. The rest is sowing themselves as a social movement that can engage with people from all around the world.

O`DONNELL: Javier Lesaca, thank you very much for joining us tonight. Appreciate it.

Coming up, the man who attacked the Planned Parenthood Clinic Colorado overruled his lawyer in court today and in an outburst said that he is guilty. Cecile Richards will join us with her reaction to that.

And, later, it was a very strange day at the Supreme Court today during an affirmative action case. Justice Antonin Scalia embarrassed himself once again.



O`DONNELL: Over the objections of his lawyer, Robert Dear confessed in court today to murdering three people on a Planned Parenthood Clinic Colorado Springs. In an outburst from the defense table that was not under oath, Dear said "I am guilty. There is no trial. I am a warrior for babies." Here is more of what he had to say.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: We are obviously going to need some time to review this with Mr. Dear.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: You need to protect the constitutionality of this proceeding.

DEAR: I protect the babies.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: But, I would ask the court to some kind.

DEAR: Let us let it all come out. Truth. Babies are supposed to be aborted that day, could you add that to the list?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: We are, certainly aware of his rights and privileges.

DEAR: Can we not seal the truth, huh? Kill the babies. That is what Planned Parenthood does. Do you know who this lawyer is in he is the lawyer for the batman shooter that drugged them all up. That is what they want to do to me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: We do not think the presumption should be that everything is posted. But, that nothing is posted. And --

DEAR: Just what you want posted, right? You will never know what I saw in that clinic, the atrocities. That is what they want to seal. The babies. A house with no toilet, no water. Contact amnesty international. Have them contact me, please.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: Judge, we cannot begin to make a determination about the nature or the depth of Mr. Dear`s mental illness until we receive --

DEAR: You are not my lawyer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: We have serious concerns about competence in this case.

DEAR: The truth will come out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: If we can somehow get that important information to us first, it would expedite the process and move the process forward and we would not --

DEAR: You have the information in the newspapers. They want the truth out.


DEAR: This is unheard of that the prosecution is trying to help get the truth out and you are trying to silence the truth. You are trying to make me -- you want -- nobody of never know the amount of blood I saw inside that place.

And, I am not going to agree to their mental health evaluations, where they want to take me and put me under psychotropic drugs, so that I cannot talk like the batman guy.


O`DONNELL: Joining us now for the "Last Word Exclusive" Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Cecile, I know that is difficult to watch. There is the man who murdered three people in one of your clinics, arguing with his lawyer, fighting with his lawyer.

That is what that was all about. And, he wants to get right to it. He wants to get his story out in that courtroom as fast as he can. And, we heard little snippets of it there. What was it like for you to listen to that?

CECILE RICHARDS, PRESIDENT OF PLANNED PARENTHOOD FEDERATION OF AMERICA: Well, it was obviously horrifying, Lawrence. And, this was an incredible tragedy in Colorado and our focus now is just making sure this kind of thing never happens again. You know, the safety of our patients and our staff is the most important thing for us at planned parenthood.

And, I think it is really important that people recognize what happened in Colorado and commit to women`s safety whether they are going to planned parenthood or any other health center in America.

O`DONNELL: You know, police analyzed crime patterns in the areas that they police. And, it makes me wonder whether police with planned parenthood clinics and their jurisdiction should be taking an extra look at those clinics and staying extra close to those clinics after they see something like this.

RICHARDS: Well, I will say, Lawrence, law enforcement has been absolutely 100 percent working with us, there in Colorado as well as across the country. And, in fact, it was really our work with law enforcement and the training that we do of our staff that prevented further tragedy in the Colorado situation.

So, I do think that, of course, we always learn from these events. But, I will say that law enforcement has been very, very collaborative and helpful. They do not want to see these things any more than we do. Obviously, they lost one of their own. I just think it is so disturbing to hear this kind of hateful rhetoric.

This is the kind of hateful rhetoric, though, unfortunately we do hear from protesters. And, it is sometimes rhetoric we hear from politicians. So, I think everyone really has to think long and hard about how we demonize women and doctors, who provide abortion services and organizations as well. This just not what America wants to see.

O`DONNELL: It is a good point. This is -- You do hear a lot of these same words and ideas coming from protesters you hear them at political conventions. They are there as people go in and out. And, I have heard -- I have been around planned parenthood operations, where I have heard them do exactly this. Let us listen to more of what he had to say in the courtroom today.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: Mr. Dear, you have a right to have a preliminary hearing within 35 days from the filing of the charges or you can waive your right to have that hearing within 35 days.

DEAR: I want the right. I want the truth to come out. There is a lot more to this than me to go silently into the grave. There is a lot of things that they do not want to be known, planned parenthood and my lawyer are in cahoots to shut me up. They do not want the truth out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: Just listen for a moment, OK? Do you in fact have a right to have a preliminary hearing within 35 days from today. Your attorney is not requesting a preliminary hearing within that 35 days. Is that OK with you?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE ATTORNEY: Do you wish to have a preliminary?

DEAR: Yes.


DEAR: I want everything as soon as possible.



O`DONNELL: Cecille, there is a murderer who has begun the day by confessing to the murder, saying that "Planned parenthood and my lawyer are in cahoots to shut me up." And, I know that there are millions of protesters out there who share his view of this situation, who are going to believe that that is exactly true.

RICHARDS: Well, I do not actually think there are millions of people who believe what he is saying are true. And, obviously, I wish that we would talk -- quit talking about him and talk about actually the thousands of incredible staff at planned parenthood and other women`s health care providers across the country, who get up every day and go to work and provide health care.

In fact, I am so proud of the resilience of our staff that even despite this tragedy, we opened our doors again on Saturday, all across the country. And, since the events that have unfolded in Colorado Springs, thousands of women have come us to for health care and they do every single day.

And, again, their health and safety is our primary concern. And, what I think is really important is this is -- most women will come to planned parenthood and never see this kind of abhorrent behavior. But, when we do see it, I think we have to call it out. And, again, we are pleased to be working with law enforcement about this.

But, I do think it is really important for politicians and to think long and hard about the ways in which they talk about doctors providing legal abortion services to women in America and to the women -- nearly three million patients who come to planned parenthood every single year.

O`DONNELL: Cecile Richards, thank you very much for joining us to night. I really appreciate it.

RICHARDS: Thank you, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, a spontaneous protest today in Chicago calling for the mayor and the county prosecutor to resign.



O`DONNELL: In a speech to the city council this morning, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel apologized for the way the Chicago police investigated the police shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, which resulted over a year later in a murder charge against Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke.


RAHM EMANUEL, (D) CHICAGO MAYOR: I own it. I take responsibility for what happened, because it happened on my watch. No citizen is a second-class citizen in the city of Chicago!



O`DONNELL: That emotional plea was not good enough for protesters, who later took to the streets demanding the mayor`s resignation and the resignation of the Cook County Prosecutor, Anita Alvarez, who brought the murder charge against Officer Van Dyke but still has not explained why it took her over a year to do that in a case that includes very explicit video showing Laquan McDonald posing no imminent threat to the police officers.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE PROTESTER: We do not want your heartbreak apology. Rahm Emanuel, we want your resignation! Anita and Rahm must go! Anita and Rahm must go.

UNIDENTIFIED GROUP OF PROTESTER: Anita and Rahm must go. Anita and Rahm must go.


O`DONNELL: Also, today, a member of the mayor`s own party introduced a bill in the state house of representatives that would amend existing law to create, quote, "A procedure for an election to recall the mayor of Chicago."

Coming up, tonight`s last word about Antonin Scalia`s uninformed and insulting words in the Supreme Court today.



O`DONNELL: And, now tonight`s good news. Since, I last updated you on the K.I.N.D. Fund, "Kids In Need of Desks," you have contributed $103,346 to continue building desks in Malawi for African schools that do not have any desks and providing scholarships for girls to complete high school there.

You can help by going to and buying a desk or a scholarship in the name of anyone on your Christmas gift list and UNICEF will send them an acknowledgement of the gift you made in their names.

I was in Malawi last month and I saw the gratitude for what you are doing on the face of every kid sitting at the desks that you have provided. And, every high schoolgirl I met who is on a K.I.N.D. Fund scholarship went out of her way to tell me how grateful she is for the chance to finish high school.


FATOUMA: As for me, I thank those people who provided this for us. I thank them a lot, because my parents cannot manage to do all these things for me, that I thank those people. Yes.


O`DONNELL: The Supreme Court listened to oral arguments today in a case that could impact affirmative action at colleges and universities around the country. In Fisher versus the University of Texas. Abigail Fisher, a white woman who was denied admission in 2008 is suing the school claiming their policy of using race as a factor in accepting students` unconstitutional.

During the oral arguments Justice Antonin Scalia said this, "There are those who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to get them into the University of Texas, where they do not do as well, as opposed to having them go to a less advanced school, a slower-track school where they do well.

One of the briefs pointed out that most of the black scientists in this country do not come from schools like the University of Texas. They come from lesser schools, where they do not feel that they are being pushed ahead in classes that are too fast for them.

Joining us now, Janai Nelson, Associate Director-Counsel in the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. She was in the courtroom today for those arguments. Janai, I must say that must have been a very difficult moment to sit through, the Scalia moments.

JANAI NELSON, NAACP LEGAL DEFENSE & EDUCATION FUND: That is exactly right. It was pretty jarring, I think, for most people in the courtroom to hear a Supreme Court Justice make those types of comments that we are just rolled up in assumptions about racial inferiority; just thoughts that you cannot imagine a figure of such stature and in such a respectable position would make.

O`DONNELL: And, it is filled with just wild assumptions. The first of all, the notion that you can define this hierarchy schools, this school is higher that school and so forth. Let me just say confessionally, I went to Harvard college. It is the easiest college in the world if you choose the right courses.

You have 6,000 courses to choose from, and I promise you a thousand of them could not be easier. And, so it is, with schools, you know, all over the country, you cannot -- these are not apples and apples. They are all different.

NELSON: That is right. It depends on your experience with classes you take.

O`DONNELL: Yes. What your major is.

NELSON: What your major is, what activities you are involved in. It is really unfortunate to cast, again, an entire group of people and suggest that they cannot compete at this high level of higher education. Because, clearly, we have so much abundant evidence to the contrary that it is shocking that in this day and age, you would have such outbursts from the Supreme Court Justice.

And, particularly, in a case where all of this is hanging in the balance. And, at a time in our country where we really cannot afford to have this sort of divisive rhetoric and to have any sort of denouncement of people based on race or based on, you know, some assumptions about their ability that are completely unfounded.

So, I hope that the backlash or at least the feedback from those comments will resonate with him and resonate with the court that this is a very important decision that they have before them and the future of the diversity of our country and particularly the leadership of this country is hanging in the balance with this case.

O`DONNELL: And, it seems like some of the justices had no memory at all or had no thoughts that those anything relevant about past discrimination. That the portion of affirmative action that is directed toward rectifying past discrimination.

NELSON: Well, really the standard now is that universities can use race in a limited way to achieve diversity. It is not remedial any longer. Unfortunately, we lost that battle in University versus Bachi -- University of California versus Bachi back in 1978.

But, four times since then the Supreme Court has said, it is perfectly constitutional to use race in a limited fashion to achieve diversity goals. And, those diversity goals benefit black students, Latino students, Asian students, white students and benefits the country at large. That is why you have --

O`DONNELL: What did Scalia say about the affirmative action program for football players?

NELSON: Precious little.

O`DONNELL: Yes. Yes.


NELSON: Precious little.

O`DONNELL: That is the part they cannot quite deal with. Janai Nelson, I am sorry you had to listen to some of that today. But, it is maybe a historic moment in that court today.

NELSON: Let us hope so.

O`DONNELL: Thank you very much for joining us tonight. Chris Hayes is up next.