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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 6/1/2016

Guests: Michael Steele, Jonathan Alter, Jerrold Nadler, Karine Jean-Pierre, Jeffrey Pollok, David Corn

Show: THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL Date: June 1, 2016 Guest: Michael Steele, Jonathan Alter, Jerrold Nadler, Karine Jean-Pierre, Jeffrey Pollok, David Corn

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: 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, MSNBC HOST: So, Rachel, because as you know the sound in these magic devices in our ears is not always perfect.

What I thought I heard you say was you were going to talk about a whale tunnel. Like tunnel --


O`DONNELL: Like a tunnel for whales. And so --


And so, when I got this image in my head. of a tunnel for whales, I couldn`t hear anything you were saying about a tunnel --

MADDOW: Well --

O`DONNELL: Just imagine.

MADDOW: How else are the whales going to cross the alps, Lawrence?

O`DONNELL: Well, there you go --

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: There you go --


O`DONNELL: A tunnel for whales, you threw me off there, Rachel, thank you --

MADDOW: Sorry, my friend, thank you, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: So, if you`re Donald Trump, and you`re accused of fraud on the front page of your local newspaper the "New York Times", you`ll of course fight back with childish tweets.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I want to have an intervention.


OBAMA: The Republican Party has picked the candidate that it has.


No booing, we`re voting --


Not booing.

HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We see someone who is unqualified and unfit to be president.

TRUMP: Big deal, like I care.

JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE: We`re not doing a Trump hotel business deal, seeking to rattle people is not objective number one.

OBAMA: Sometimes, I just don`t get it. How it is that somebody could propose that we weaken regulations on Wall Street? That is crazy.

TRUMP: We`re going to build a wall, a wall.

OBAMA: We can`t put up walls around America. We`re not going to round up 11 million people.

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: I don`t hold back, I`ll be voting for Donald Trump in November.

OBAMA: Their answers to our challenges are no answers at all.

CLINTON: Donald Trump himself is a fraud. He is trying to scam America the way he scammed all those people at Trump U.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Clinton`s attempts to focus solely on Trump complicated by her ongoing primary battle.

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hillary Clinton racing to California, Bill Clinton racing to California, maybe they think this campaign is not quite over.



O`DONNELL: President Obama unofficially entered the presidential campaign today, not to support Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders, but to forcefully oppose Donald Trump.

Donald Trump is expected to respond to what the President had to say. Today, he is speaking right now at a rally in Sacramento, California.

The President chose the town of Elkhart, Indiana, to attack Donald Trump on what polls show to be Trump`s strong suit, the economy.

The last time there was a Republican in the White House, the unemployment rate in Elkhart County was 19 percent, the unemployment rate there now is 4.3 president.

President Obama told his Elkhart audience today that the choice is theirs, 4.3 percent unemployment with the continuation of his policies or 19 percent or worse with Donald Trump`s policies.


OBAMA: The Republican nominee for president has already said he`d dismantle all these rules that we passed.

That is crazy!



Have we -- let me -- no, look, I mean, sometimes -- I`ll be honest with you. Sometimes, I just don`t get it.


How it is that somebody could propose that we weaken regulations on Wall Street. Have we really forgotten what just happened eight years ago?


It hasn`t been that long ago. And because of their reckless behavior, you got hurt. And the notion that you would vote for anybody who would now allow them to go back to doing the same stuff that almost broke our economy`s back makes no sense.



I don`t care whether you`re a Republican or a Democrat or an independent, why would you do that?


O`DONNELL: Three weeks after being sworn in as president in 2009, President Obama visited Elkhart when the unemployment rate was 19 percent.

Today, while warning his audience about what a Trump presidency could do to Elkhart, he never mentioned the name Donald Trump.


OBAMA: The debate is not even close. One path would lead to lower wages, it would eliminate worker protections, it would cut investments in things like education, it would weaken the safety net.

It would kick people off health insurance, it would let China write the rules for the global economy. It would let big oil weaken rules that protect our air and water.

It would let big banks weaken rules that protect families from getting cheated. It would cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans to historic lows.

Those are the facts. Don`t think that actually this agenda is going to help you.


It`s not designed to help you. And the evidence over the last 30 years, not to mention, common sense, should tell you that their answers to our challenges are no answers at all!


O`DONNELL: The president knew that in Elkhart, he was not preaching to the converted.


OBAMA: While I may have won the state of Indiana just barely in 2008 --



I know I lost the vote in Elkhart.


I definitely got whooped here in 2012. I know I don`t poll all that well in this county. So, I am not here looking for votes.

I am here because I care deeply as a citizen, about making sure we sustain and build on all the work that communities like yours have done to bring America back over these last seven and a half years.


OBAMA: And I came here precisely because this county votes Republican. That`s one of the reasons I came here.

Because if the economy is really what`s driving this election, then it`s going to be voters like you that have to decide between two very different visions of what`s going to help strengthen our middle class.



O`DONNELL: At a campaign event in New Jersey today, Hillary Clinton leaned on this morning`s lead story in the "New York Times".

The story reports that the sales manager for the now defunct Trump University has given the following testimony in one of the fraud cases brought against Donald Trump over Trump University.

"I believe the Trump University was a fraudulent scheme, and that it preyed upon the elderly and uneducated to separate them from their money."


CLINTON: Donald Trump himself is a fraud. He is trying to scam America the way he scammed all those people at Trump U.

It`s important that we recognize what he has done because that`s usually a pretty good indicator of what he will do.


O`DONNELL: At the speech Donald Trump is giving right now in California, he said this about Hillary Clinton.


TRUMP: Hillary Clinton who lies, I mean, she lies, you remember that I started the -- she lies. She lies, she made a speech, and she`s making another one tomorrow and they sent me a copy of the speech.

And it was such lies about my foreign policy that they said I want Japan to nuke. I want Japan to get nuclear weapons. Give me a break.


O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Nbc News correspondent Katy Tur who`s been covering the Trump campaign, she joins us from Sacramento.

Katy, what have we heard from Donald Trump so far in response to Hillary Clinton`s statements today or President Obama`s statements.

KATY TUR, NBC NEWS: He`s come out pretty hard against Hillary Clinton so far tonight right off the bat.

This is ahead of Hillary Clinton`s foreign policy speech, her sound bite you just played with Donald Trump talking about not wanting Japan to have a nuclear weapon.

That is the first time he`s unequivocally said that back about a month ago, he was talking to the "New York Times" about foreign policy.

And that is where he said he`d be open to the idea of letting Japan and Saudi Korea, Saudi Arabia have a nuclear weapon.

Then said he`s backtracked, he`s walked that back. But tonight, this is the first time he`s unequivocally said that he does not want Japan to have a nuclear weapon.

He`s also been attacking President Obama for the speech in Indiana, saying that he now can go after him, he thinks he`s fair game just like Bill Clinton is.

The reality is Donald Trump has been going after President Obama pretty steadily since this campaign has started calling his policies bad for the country.

Saying that he would immediately overturn all of the executive orders that he has put in place in the last eight years of his presidency.

A lot of red meat from Donald Trump tonight, also a lot of attacks on the - - on the press. This after what was a pretty bad news cycle for the candidate after the Trump University lawsuit in court document dump.

Hundreds of pages of playbook documents and depositions from teacher- student, and the playbook outlining just how they uphold students on their seminars that sorted out three -- went to $1,500, and went as high as $35,000.

Donald Trump trying to get out behind that really because they barely responded to it today, and spin the news cycle back in his direction.

This clearly a day where he did not win the cycle out which is unusual for him, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Katy Tur, thank you. Joining us now, Michael Steele; a former Republican Party chairman and an Msnbc political analyst.

And Jonathan Alter, an Msnbc political analyst and columnist for the "Daily Beast". Michael, one thing I was struck by in President Obama`s speech is that part where he says he came to Elkhart, Indiana today, specifically because he knows they vote Republican.

And he wanted to be talking to those voters. That`s a pretty unusual move for what was clearly a political speech going into basically unfriendly voter territory.

MICHAEL STEELE, FORMER CHAIRMAN, REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE: Yes, it was, and I think it was actually a pretty smart move by the president. Look, the president is very anxious, Lawrence, to engage Donald Trump in this cycle.

And I think he will. This is -- for him, even a lot less about Hillary and Bernie, what`s going on there and more about the opportunity to frame his last eight years against a potential four years of Donald Trump.

And so, going into Republican territory, going into our backyard if you will. For him, it`s juicy. It gives him an opportunity to say, look, I`m not afraid to engage here, I`m not afraid of Donald Trump, and I think you know like I know, that what`s best for this country is not what he`s offering.

So, it`s a very bold move by the president to do that. But be careful how you do it. Because the one thing I think the White House does not want to get into is a pitch back and forth between the President and Donald Trump.

Trump would love it, because it works to his narrative in the long term, but I don`t know how much it helps the other candidates that the President should be concerned about on the Democratic side if suddenly this race becomes more about him than them.

O`DONNELL: And Jonathan, Donald Trump was silent today until he gave this speech tonight in California.

But he`s greeted with a front page just devastating article about Trump University and the fraud that the lawsuit is trying to prove in that case.

And his response to that is to tweet of course, until tonight --

STEELE: Yes --

O`DONNELL: And his tweet was, "crooked Hillary Clinton is a fraud, who has put the public and country at risk by her illegal and very stupid use of e- mails, many missing."

So, no attempt during the day anyway to defend against this devastating article in the "New York Times" about Trump University.

JONATHAN ALTER, COLUMNIST, DAILY BEAST: Yes, what he does is, he just hits back. He`s all about retaliation, as he said to Megyn Kelly, he hits back times ten.

It`s a little scary when you think about it internationally when if somebody (INAUDIBLE) off to the United States, if he hits back times ten, that means we have a war, which I think would be very likely were Trump to become president.

But it`s effective in a campaign. He knows the cut and thrust of this campaign, and that`s what makes him dangerous and, you know, getting -- it`s always dangerous to get into a pizzing(ph) match with a skank.

And that`s what -- that`s what the Clinton people are trying to figure out. They`re kind of dealing with him with asbestos mittens at this point.

They don`t yet know, they haven`t found the key with which to attack him. I think Obama is actually on more solid ground in the way he`s going after it.

Which is on the issues. And you know, the only way that Trump wins is if middle management and their spouses in the suburbs; the people who make between, you know, $70 and $120,000 a year.

If they say, he is better for our 401k, Donald Trump is. If Obama and Hillary can undermine that and say, no, he would wreck the economy.

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALTER: If he became president, then they assure a Hillary victory.

O`DONNELL: Yes, and Michael --

ALTER: Yes --

O`DONNELL: We saw him trying to pre-empt Hillary Clinton`s foreign policy speech tomorrow. And apparently now, he seems -- Donald Trump seems to understand that Japan having nuclear weapons is not a good idea, and --

STEELE: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Not a good idea for a presidential candidate to advocate. I just want to get Donald Trump`s exact words, some of them about this in the records since he`s now trying to apparently deny what he said.

He said in March, "you have so many countries already, China, Pakistan, you have so many countries, Russia, you have so many countries right now that have them.

Now, wouldn`t you rather in a certain sense have Japan have nuclear weapons when North Korea has nuclear weapons?"

And so, Michael, that is the statement --

STEELE: Right --

O`DONNELL: That he is now trying to run away from.

STEELE: Yes, reality catches up and it changes -- it changes your focus. And I think when you`re speaking rhetorically without any basis and understanding of facts, and the relationship, very delicate relationship that the United States has carved out since World War II.

With a lot of its now partners who were once adversaries, yes, you come to that realization, and this is part of the maturation of this process.

I think Donald Trump though has approached it a little bit more slowly than most other presidential candidates would have.

To Jonathan`s point, he stayed much more in the fighting mode times ten than in the appreciation and learning mode times a hundred to really get himself up to speed on some of these very delicate issues.

You just can`t lead with that, Lawrence. You have to understand it before you really go out and pontificate on it. So, you give it the right context.

The American people are smart enough to know that, and I think that`s going to be one of the interesting challenges that the Clinton campaign is going to raise with him with the American people over the next few months on foreign policy and on the economy.

O`DONNELL: The Democrats are not -- they`re not going to have just Barack Obama out there talking about this.

John Kerry, former presidential candidate himself on "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" tonight, let`s listen to him talking about Donald Trump`s approach to foreign policy.


KERRY: We`re not doing a Trump hotel business deal. It is -- these are dealings between nations, based on precedent, based on understandings, based on the trust from one administration to another.

This is an ongoing relationship. And when you`re dealing with nuclear weapons and you`re dealing with war, and you`re dealing with the life and death choices that the president of the United States has to make every day, seeking to rattle people is not objective than the one most of the time.


O`DONNELL: Jonathan, is that argument going to penetrate in that marginal group of voters who decide this election --

ALTER: I actually think it`s a very important argument for Kerry, for Hillary Clinton, for Bill Clinton, for Barack Obama over and over again to make the American people familiar with the word unpresidential.

To say it 50 million times so that you start hearing it back in the focus groups, oh, he`s unpresidential. And right now, you don`t hear that on the street corner by the water fountain.

But you might by the time this is over. And you know, when you get close to a presidential election, the public gets the stakes and I think it`s less likely to elect somebody who`s unpresidential, but they have to drive the message.

It`s not going to happen by itself.

O`DONNELL: Jonathan Alter and Michael Steele, thank you both for joining us tonight, really appreciate it.

ALTER: Thanks, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, why did Donald Trump take federal money from a fund for victims of 911. The Congressman who wants him to return that money will be our next guest.

And a last word tonight about on this day in 1968 in the presidential campaign.


O`DONNELL: Donald Trump`s rally in Sacramento this evening started early and ended early. Jacob Rascon is outside that airport hangar in Sacramento.

Jacob, what`s the situation there?

JACOB RASCON, NBC NEWS: What we`re seeing, Lawrence, are thousands of people who were inside of the rally now walking out. And what we`re going to see just up ahead are police.

A line of them separating protesters that have been here the entire rally from supporters who are going out.

Throughout the rally and just before, there was some taunting, some heckling of reporters, shouting shame on you to the Trump supporters.

We have some video of that, because it did get tense at one point. What we were seeing though is that it wasn`t as intense as we have seen in the past week.

Because this was held, this rally at an airport very far away from where people can easily get to very easily. So, back out here live, we`ll tell you again they have the police on motorcycle and they have others in here, the protesters who were left over with their signs.

So far, nothing physical and Lawrence, no arrests.

O`DONNELL: Jacob Rascon, thank you very much for joining us. And nothing news worthy in that Trump speech we showed you, the one piece of it that was relevant to what Hillary Clinton had to say today.

Up next, Congressman Jerrold Nadler and his call for Donald Trump to return grant money that he took from a fund that was meant for victims of 9/11.


O`DONNELL: Listen to Donald Trump on September 13th, 2001, two days after the 9/11 attacks that destroyed the World Trade Center.


TRUMP: I have a lot of property down there, but it was unfortunately affected by what happened at the World Trade Center.


O`DONNELL: The member of Congress who represents the ground where the World Trade Center once stood is calling on Donald Trump to return $150,000 of federal funds that Donald Trump applied for and received from the World Trade Center business recovery grant program designed to help small businesses in that area.

In an open letter to Donald Trump, Congressman Jerry Nadler wrote, "you claim to be one of the biggest, richest, most successful developers in the city.

Yet, you took taxpayer money from a grant program designed to help the little guys. Whatever the size of your business, we need no further proof that you are a small man."

Joining us now, Democratic Congressman from Newark, Jerry Nadler, who represents lower Manhattan and the west side of Manhattan.

Congressman Nadler, how did this happen? How did Donald Trump, self- proclaimed multi-billionaire apply for small business relief from a 9/11 fund?

REP. JERROLD NADLER, (D), NEW YORK: Well, first of all, we had to establish that fund.

O`DONNELL: Yes, you had to fight for it.

NADLER: We had to fight for it, there were no grant programs to small business people until this. And we got that because we knew that a lot of the really small business people, the pizza shop, the restaurants, the shoe shine places, they couldn`t pay back loans.

They needed grants, and we got that --

O`DONNELL: They were -- these people were wiped out --

NADLER: They were wiped out --

O`DONNELL: They made zero income --

NADLER: And their customers were gone for a year --


NADLER: Or more. So, we got this program and then to see him come in and push the little guys aside and take $150,000, this money for no reason at all.

For 40 Wall Street, which is valued at 400 million -- which he valued at $400 million, which is hardly a small business.

It was just disgusting and small, and that`s why I demanded he return the money. It hasn`t happened, the state government which was handing it out violated the federal government bonds.

O`DONNELL: What recourse do you have other than this demand that he just do the right thing?

NADLER: Well, we don`t have any legal recourse unfortunately, but he says he`s for the small guy, he says he`s fighting for economic fairness and so forth.

He should return the money. I mean, this is just part of the same pattern, he mooches all the time whether it`s -- and whether it`s mooching on the -- on the tuition payments of students of the so-called Trump University or to that matter, I fought him years ago.

Where he was going to get a mortgage guarantee for his west side development based on the fact that it was built on blighted land.

It was an abandoned rail yard, it was in the -- in the most expensive real estate in the world we got this revoked. I got the secretary of -- Dan Cuomo(ph) to revoke the mortgage guarantee.

But he was trying to get that, to take millions and millions of federal dollars intended to build up blighted neighborhoods for his luxury development.

O`DONNELL: Having watched him in your career here in New York City and I watched him operate in your district as well as other congressional districts.

Were you at all surprised to discover that we have Donald Trump on the one hand on video, saying, I didn`t suffer at all during 911, and then with another hand, he`s taking $150,000 of taxpayer money.

NADLER: No, I wasn`t surprised at all, the man is shameless. And I`m sure he was being honest when he said he didn`t suffer at all.

O`DONNELL: Right --

NADLER: But then, I`m sure he`s got people working for him, looking for every federal -- every dollar that he can conceivably get.

I mean, look, he took 40-year tax evade and for the Grand Hyatt Hotel, he`s still not -- well, it`s about 40 years now, maybe he`s paying taxes now, but with an estimated $400 million.

OK, he negotiated it well, the city of New York was in a desperate position at that point, but his entire career pattern is mooching off government, mooching off little guys and cheating anybody he can.

O`DONNELL: Congressman Jerry Nadler, thank you very much for bringing this to our attention, thanks for joining us tonight.

NADLER: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: Thank you. Up next, in the war room, veterans of the Clinton war room are now advising Hillary Clinton on how to handle Donald Trump.


O`DONNELL: Time for tonight`s war room. Two top strategists from Hillary Clinton`s 2008 presidential campaign war room, Mark Pen and Jeff Garron told Hillary Clinton that her best move now against Donald Trump is to go positive not negative.

They did this in an article in Politico. Mark Pen told Politico, "From her point of view, establishing positives is far more important to winning. Why spend so much energy attacking Trump? What difference does it make when he is over 57 percent negative and she has a lot of leadership qualities that have gone unsung? It is like beating a dead horse." Hillary Clinton stayed on attack against Donald Trump today.


HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Just yesterday, we learned the truth about Donald Trump`s big talk about helping veterans. It turns out it was not until the press shamed him that he actually made the donations he had promised.


For months, it was all just a publicity stunt. Donald Trump, himself, is a fraud. I got to tell you, I think that Donald Trump has disqualified himself, completely.


O`DONNELL: With 160 days left for the campaign war rooms, joining us in "The Last Word" war room tonight, Jeffrey Pollok, the President of Global Strategy Group and a pollster for Hillary Clinton`s Super PAC, priors USA. And, Karine Jean-Pierre, a veteran of Martin O`Malley`s and President Obama`s presidential campaigns.

Karine, what do you make of this advice? It is fascinating to be in these war rooms, where they are looking at these astronomically high negatives in the other candidate. And is it possible that you cannot drive Donald Trump`s negative any higher.

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, FMR. DEPUTY CAMPAIGN MGR. O`MALLEY 2016: Well, look, Lawrence, you have to be able to walk and chew gum at the same time. I think it is not just going positive and going negative. You have to be able to have a two-prong approach and do that and execute it very well, which is going to be very difficult to do.

As you just mentioned, both their negatives are very, very high. And so, you know, Donald Trump is this ruthless business man who will take you down by any means necessary. And it is all a game for him. So how does a woman who has a last name Clinton, who has been in politics for 25 years do this?

One of the things that I would argue to say is that, you need to beef up your surrogates. If I was in that war room, I would be like, "OK, beef up who is out there talking for us." Right? "Let us figure out who is out there, who can take off the gloves, and take it to the streets and play the game that Donald Trump is playing with this, which are no rules in this game."

And so that is the key here. And Elizabeth Warren has been excellent at that, right? She takes it to him. She gets under his skin. She shakes him down. But the other part of it too is you have to also figure out how you are going to be positive. And, she needs a messages going to resonate. And it just has not happened yet, right?

There are people out there, everyday people, parents who have two, three kids, who are trying to figure out, if they are going to put their kids in daycare or not. She needs to figure out, how she is going to talk to those people.

One things that she did when she first announced she had that great video, that made us all feel that we were with her, she was with u, that showed a diverse group of people that told their stories every day. And that is what we need to see her do. How she is going to connect. What is she going to do for the people? What is her 2016 "Yes, we can."

O`DONNELL: Jeffrey, one of the lessons I think of the Rubio campaign was, "You cannot do two things in the same speech." Or if you do, what would happen I, he would go up, four and a half minutes of standup comedy about Trump, that to me was effective, con man, all this stuff.

And then, he do 35 minutes of substantive material, that no one would cover, not one word of the policy. So it seems to be me, if you are going to do this, it is going to be one day, and then the next day -- On the same day, if you try to get something substance of him after Hillary Clinton has called him a fraud, which I have to say sounded pretty effective --


JEAN-PIERRE: Yes, definitely.

O`DONNELL: After she has done that, it is going to be impossible for her to get any --

POLLOK: You are telling me substance does not sell.

O`DONNELL: I am telling you that the news media has a limited appetite for any of the deep calls about the tax policy.

POLLOK: Look, and that is the point, right? So first of all, she should keep doing exactly what she has been doing, right? She is the presumptive democratic nominee. And so far be it for me to sort of tell her to do something differently.

Also, you are right about what Marco Rubio was doing in terms of mixing it. But I want to remind you of the Rubio war room and the Bush war room and all the other ones, where people like us, not -- we were not there, but people like us who sat in the beginning. Forget about what Rubio is doing at the end.


POLLOK: Let us talk about the beginning when all those republican campaigns thought, "No, no. This guy`s negatives are so high, we cannot possibly, possibly do any damage to him," and they let him go. And they treated him with gloves. His numbers did change.

So you know what? I think they should continue to take it to him just like they are doing. And I think you are going to see positive. You are going to see all that message, but you cannot let this guy down and you cannot let him off. Every time you put him on the defensive, he seems to trip off as well. So let him do it.

O`DONNELL: Yes. And that is the interesting thing. When they say -- when these foreign advisers tell her publicly, "Do not go negative." I think one of the strategic problems of that is, Donald Trump is going to wake up in the morning going negative. If you get there first, then his negative is going to have to be response to yours.

JEAN-PIERRE: Yes. That is right. That is exactly right. And not only does he go negative in the morning, he goes negative at 10:00 at night for five to five hours, because the guy only sleeps for four hours, right? So that is exactly right.

You have to take it to him. You have to shake him. You have to get him in the core. It will work, right? We have seen that happen, especially I mentioned Elizabeth Warren has done that to him. You cannot let him get away with it. And also the general election is going to be voters are going to be out there. A lot of people are still not quite paying attention. So you have to define him now.

POLLOK: Also do not forget that in the primary, Hillary is still dealing with the primaries. She is still dealing with Bernie. And the notion of sort of taking it to Trump also speaks to those primary voters. Democratic primary voters, we know who them. We deal with them all the time. They want a fight her.

O`DONNELL: They want to see them.

POLLOK: Right. They want that fight. And so you know what? She is actually accomplishing both things in terms of doing this.


O`DONNELL: And it deals with that problem she has in the polls that shows Bernie Sanders beating Donald Trump by bigger margins. She is stuck in a tie with him, and Bernie beats by significant margin. To see her fighting against Donald Trump is not a preview of what is going to happen. It is what she has to show now she knows how to do.

JEAN-PIERRE: That is exactly right. And she also has to be aspirational, too. Voters do want to see that. So that is important for her to do as well.

O`DONNELL: All right. We are going to have to leave it there for tonight. Jeffrey Pollok and Karine Jean-Pierre, thank you both.

POLLOK: Thank you, Lawrence.

JEAN PIERRE: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: I really appreciate it.

JEAN-PIERRE: Thank you, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, new reports that Donald Trump`s businesses are being hurt badly by his presidential campaign.

And later, "The Last Word" about this night in 1968. The great presidential of that year was on this night.



O`DONNELL: Golf tournaments, are getting as far away from Trump as possible. In one case, actually leaving the country and going to, guess where? Mexico. Because Donald Trump`s brand is so toxic. We will have more on the harm Donald Trump is doing to his businesses. But first, here is how it looked on the campaign trail today it.


STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC HOST: A brand new national poll showing a close race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.



HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think that Donald Trump has disqualified himself completely.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER (voice-over): And then there is the mystery man, David French, a conservative writer and Iraq war veteran, being touted by the never Trump movement.



HALLIE JACKSON, MSNCB CORRESPONDENT: He was caught up with Nancy French. Here is more of what she had to say about her husband`s potential ruin to take on Donald Trump.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE SPEAKER: It is not like we sat around, trying to get to the oval office or in a political position ever. So we are very honored to be consider.



ANDREA MITCHELL, MSNBC ANCHOR: Trump`s campaign has yet to answer tough questions about Trump University.



CLINTON: This is just more evidence that Donald Trump, himself, is a fraud.



KRISTEN WELKER, NBC WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: This latest controversy with Trump University, may be giving them one of their best lines of attack to take on Donald Trump.



CLINTON: He is trying to scam America, the way he scammed all those people at Trump U.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER (voice-over): Senayor Sanders made the case that the Super delegates should vote for him, because he polled better against Trump than Clinton. (END VIDEO CLIP)


SANDERS: If we do come out with the nomination, Donald Trump is toast.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Joining me now is Bernie Sanders` closest adviser and top strategist, his wife, Jane Sanders.



JANE SANDERS, BERNIE SANDER`S WIFE: We do not agree with the idea of super delegates. But Super delegates, we respect.



WELKER: Senator Sanders has not left California. He has poured almost all of his resources into trying to win the state.



SANDERS: The campaign results. Why Secretary Clinton and her husband Bill are back in California.


ODONNELL: Today, the PGA tour announced that it was ending a 54 relationship with the Trump Doral Golf Course, because it could not find a sponsor to replace Cadillac, who did not renew its contract to sponsor that golf tournament this year.

The news comes as Trump hotel bookings dropped, since the republican nominee launched his campaign. Data by Price Analytics firm, Price Analytics show reservations at Trump hotels have declined 59 percent over the past three months compared to the same period last year.

Trump`s hotels in New York and Las Vegas have taken major hits falling more than 70 percent. Joining us now, David Corn, Washington Bureau Chief from Mother Jones and an MSNBC Political Analyst.

It could not be more ironic David this gold tournament leaving a Trump golf course, because the Trump name is so toxic for any sponsor and taking it to Mexico. Donald Trump, himself, driving golf jobs to Mexico for that golf tournament.

DAVID CORN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, it turns out that Donald Trump is not too good for the Miami economy. I do not know about you, Lawrence, but I am eating a lot less Trump steaks these days.



CORN: But I was thinking about this and I am not a branding expert. There are people who are out there. But it seems to me that the Trump brand used to stand for luxury. Now, perhaps ostentatious luxury maybe gouty luxury, glitzy luxury. But luxury nevertheless.

And now Trump does not seem for that. Trump stands for Trump the guy, the man. So, if you are going to be staying in the Trump hotel, that is going up a block from my officer here in downtown D.C., you are making a statement now.

I mean, your decision to stay at a Trump hotel, to order anything Trump related is going to be tied up with what you think about Donald Trump. And with his unfavorable being, you know, in the 60 percent region, it means most people do not want to be associated with Trump or anything related to Trump. This cannot be a good business move for him so far.

O`DONNELL: Let us listen to what he told his audience tonight about this.


TRUMP: Today, in Golf, anybody view what happened? They moved the world golf championship, which used to be Cadillac, a great sponsor by the way, Cadillac. And they wanted it longer.

They moved the world golf championships from Miami to Mexico City. Can you believe it? Not good. But that is OK. Folks, it is all going to be settle. You both for Donald Trump as president. If I become your president, this stuff is all going to stop.



O`DONNELL: Sorry, the president does have the power to tell golf tournaments where they are going to play. But of course the Trump audience does not know that.

CORN: Yes. You vote for me, I will build a wall and bring golf back to Miami. Well, you know, that is the thing. He is not pervious to outside external forces. Cadillac did not renew the Trump golf tournament. I wonder why that might be? After all these years, and I wonder why PGA could not find another sponsor.

Now they said today that PGA, bless their hearts that it is hard to find someone who wants to share sponsorship of a tournament. What they did not say was, to share sponsorship of a tournament, where the guy named, Donald Trump.

I mean that - what made your corporation now that cares about its standing in the world and its customers who might be immigrants. Or might be a Mexican background or might just be offended by Trump`s bullying arrogance and bigotry is going to get into bed with Trump in any sort of business deal. He is going to be toxic, even if he comes president for a long time.

O`DONNELL: And for him to use it as an opportunity to pretend that there is a presidential power that can stop this when he becomes president. You know he is trying to turn it into an asset, a setback for his business caused by him. He tries to turn into an asset with his audience.

CORN: Well, once Trump has lost the golfing crowd, I do not know what else is left for him. I mean, his business deals around the world, actually, that are falling apart, too. He had a hotel that is not happening.

He has had projects in lot of countries, where he has been trying to lend his name in Abu Dhabi -- or actually in Dubai, they took his name well for hotel. This is not good for business.

O`DONNELL: David Corn, thank you very much for joining us tonight.

CORN: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, on this very night in 1968, Bobby Kennedy participated in his first and last presidential campaign debate in California. That is next.



O`DONNELL: During this campaign year, our thoughts repeatedly return to 1968, where we saw some of the precedence for what we are seeing this year, the George Wallace candidacy are being married now in Donald Trump`s candidacy.

It was a year of tragic outcomes in the presidential campaign. It was a year that will never forget. We are going to remember what happened on this night in 1968, next.


O`DONNELL: Now, tonight`s "Last Word." There will be no presidential campaign debate in California before voters go to the polls there on presidential primary on Tuesday. There was a possibility of a Hillary Clinton versus Bernie Sanders debate in California.

Bernie Sanders desperately wanted to do it. Hillary Clinton`s campaign decided she had nothing to gain from it. Then Jimmy Kimmel ignited the possibility of a debate in California.


JIMMY KIMMEL, LATE NIGHT TALK SHOW HOST: OK. So here is a question from Bernie. He asked, "Hillary Clinton backed out of an agreement to debate me in California before the June 7th primary." Are you prepared to debate the major issues facing our largest issues and the country before the California primary, yes or no? He wants to know if you will debate.

TRUMP: Yes, I am. How much is he going to pay me?


O`DONNELL: Bernie Sanders immediately accepted that debate and the a couple of days later, Donald Trump presumably agreeing with me that he might get destroyed in a debate with Bernie Sanders, decided it was not worth taking that risk.

And so there will be no debate. No debate. In our most important state. California has more people than any other any state by a giant order of magnitude. No other state is in close. California has more of everything, more rich people, more poor people, more working people, more unemployed people, more young people, more old people.

We think of Iowa and Nebraska, as our big agriculture states. But California is actually our biggest agriculture state. If California were a separate country, if would be the seventh largest economy in the world.

The California economy includes everything: manufacturing, shipping, agriculture, high tech, high finance, service industries, oil production, and a huge amount of international trade through its sea ports and across its southern borders.

There are more governing issues to discuss in California, than in any other state. But Iowa gets the presidential debates every time with candidates pandering to the narrow impact -- to the narrow issues like ethanol, and California again gets no debate.

In 1968, the situation could not have been more different, California got the only presidential debate that year. There was only one. It was not a general election debate between a democrat and republican. It was a one- on-one debate between two democrats, who desperately needed to win the California primary.

The debate occurred on this night, June 1, 1968, with democratic Senator McCarthy, facing the late comer to the campaign, democratic senator Robert Kennedy. Senator McCarthy had just won the Oregon primary. He wanted to use the California debate to finally crush the Kennedy candidacy.

Bobby Kennedy decided to bet his entire campaign on California. He needed to win the debate and win the state three days later. Bobby Kennedy said, he would withdraw from the race if he lost California. A full video of the 168 debate is not publicly available, but there is full audio recording. And here is some of what Bobby Kennedy had to say.


I think that is based on that experience, and the work I have done in the senate of the United States, as well as in the executive branch of the government that -- and experience I have had: the test ban treaty, the Cuban missile crisis, that perhaps there is something that I can contribute in the cause of peace and trying to end the conflict that now exists in Vietnam.

And as Thomas Jefferson said, "Standing for the last best hope of mankind, which we are in this country." In the last analysis, however, it is up to the people of California and it is up to the people of the United States to make their judgment and determination about any of us.

I am going to dedicate myself no matter what happens, to the betterment and improvement of this country and the people, and the choice, really, is up to you. And I am glad to have it that way.


O`DONNELL: Three days later, the people of California chose Bobby Kennedy. Next week, we will talk about what happened when Bobby Kennedy won the California primary.

But tonight, June 1st, the night that Bobby Kennedy won the California debate then watched by 38 percent of the county, a bigger audience than has watched any of the presidential debates this year. On this night, let us give Bobby Kennedy "The Last Word."


KENNEDY: I am going to dedicate myself no matter what happens, to the betterment and improvement of this country and the people, and the choice, really, is up to you. And I am glad to have it that way.