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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 9/27/2016

Guests: Rick Wilson, Cornell Belcher, Vicente Fox, David Fahrenthold

Show: THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL Date: September 27, 2016 Guest: Rick Wilson, Cornell Belcher, Vicente Fox, David Fahrenthold

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, hello, Lawrence.

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST: Thanks, Rachel, a quick quiz --

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Before you go.

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Who among these O`Donnells am I not related to, OK?


O`DONNELL: NBC News Kelly O`Donnell, "Cbs News" Norah O`Donnell, hunky actor Chris O`Donnell or America`s sweetheart, Rosie O`Donnell. Who among those O`Donnells am I not related to?

MADDOW: Oh, God, I`m going to say Rosie?

O`DONNELL: All of them, Rachel --


I am not related to any famous and capable O`Donnells.

MADDOW: If we go back --

O`DONNELL: I mean --

MADDOW: Far enough? --

O`DONNELL: I think --

MADDOW: Come on? --

O`DONNELL: If you go a thousand years back --

MADDOW: Yes --

O`DONNELL: In the bog, the lines will cross somewhere in Ireland. But none of us have any trace of being related, and Rachel, that is going to turn out to be a relevant point --


O`DONNELL: For what is to come, and thank you --

MADDOW: I`m on --

O`DONNELL: For helping me make that point --

MADDOW: I`m on the edge of my genetically predetermined seat.


O`DONNELL: Thank you, Rachel. Well, David Fahrenthold is going to join us tonight with his latest expose in the "Washington Post" about the Trump Foundation.

And the former president of Mexico Vicente Fox will join us with his reaction to the debate last night. And after that first Clinton versus Trump debate, a former Republican senator has endorsed Hillary Clinton and a newspaper which has never endorsed a Democrat for president has now endorsed Hillary Clinton.




BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Did she have a good debate or what?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If I were Donald Trump, I wouldn`t participate in another debate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The first presidential debate was moderated by Lester Holt and heckled by Donald Trump.

TRUMP: Wrong --

CLINTON: That is absolutely --

TRUMP: Wrong --

CLINTON: Proved over and over again.

TRUMP: Wrong --

JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I tell you what, if this choice isn`t clear, I don`t know, oh, my Lord.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: She`s serious, she does her homework. I would say that the other guy doesn`t have the preparation, the temperament.

TRUMP: I think my strongest asset maybe by far is my temperament. I have a winning temperament. She does not have --

HOLT: Secretary Clinton --

TRUMP: Wait --

BIDEN: What in the hell is he talking about?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Donald Trump choked, actually.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He did not seem to me acutely aware of how some of those things that he was doing with his face might look.

TRUMP: The microphone in the room wasn`t working properly. I had a problem with the microphone, it didn`t work, my microphone was terrible.

CLINTON: Somebody who complains about the microphone is not having a good night.


O`DONNELL: America watches presidential debates to see someone fall on his face, just get wiped out, humiliated. Like on one of those humiliation reality shows. The kind that Donald Trump used to run where he fired people.

That`s not the way you and I watch debates, but that is what draws a huge audience to a presidential debate when it gets a huge audience.

The possibility of someone just collapsing on stage, utter humiliation, live in front of the whole world, the whole country.

And that is why 84 million people watched the class president debate the class clown last night. They watched because there was the possibility of real humiliation. And that possibility existed only on one side of that debate.

There was no possibility that the class president would be humiliated on the debate stage. The presidential debate is usually a debate between two class presidents. People who use the same rules in debates and variations on the same general style.

A relatively gentlemanly affair, because it`s always been gentlemen on that stage until last night. And so, 84 million people watched and waited. That`s 20 million more than watched the last presidential debates four years ago.

But it is less, much less than watched the first time the class president debated the class clown. The first time someone from show business found himself on a stage debating the president of United States.


JIMMY CARTER, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Governor Reagan, again, typically is against such a proposal.




O`DONNELL: President Jimmy Carter and his challenger Ronald Reagan had only one debate and 80 million people watched that debate.

Yes, that`s 4 million less than watched last night. But a much bigger share of the American population which was 100 million people less than we have today.

Since the Reagan-Carter debate, we added 100 million people to our population, but we added only 4 million viewers to the debate last night. Only 26 percent of the country watched the debate last night.

Thirty six percent watched when Ronald Reagan, the former actor took the stage against the president of the United States.

And as the country bears witness every day now to the rank and competence and ignorance of Donald Trump, it is hard to remember how incompetent the former actor Ronald Reagan was regarded by much of the electorate and the news media.

Ronald Reagan was a man of slim education going against an Annapolis graduate who majored in science and the country tuned in because the possibility that the Hollywood guy could fall flat on his face in the history of president-televised presidential debates.

Ronald Reagan was the first nominee to take the stage with about half the country thinking he might simply be unfit to be president, and he might prove that. Might prove that in spectacular fashion on live TV.

The possibility that the Hollywood actor would be utterly humiliated by the scientist was why America tuned in, in huge numbers.

It didn`t happen. Most observers thought Ronald Reagan held his own on the debate stage with President Carter, and the rest is history.

Ronald Reagan won the presidency because he wasn`t a clown. Because he was smarter and a better politician than his sharpest critics gave him credit for.

And so in 1980, when America tuned in to watch the class clown debate the class president, the class clown didn`t show up.

Governor Ronald Reagan showed up. But last night, the huge audience that tuned in to watch the class clown debate the class president was not disappointed, because the class clown showed up with all of his clownish impulses on full display.


CLINTON: I have a feeling by the end of this evening, I`m going to be blamed for everything that`s ever happened.

TRUMP: Why not?

CLINTON: Why not? Yes, why not.



O`DONNELL: No one who ever thought that Ronald Reagan was stupid could have ever imagined Ronald Reagan saying something as stupid as that. Why not blame your opponent for everything?

That was the wise guy talking. The wise guy`s favorite retort is why not? This country is full of stupid wise guys like that whose best line is "why not?"

That`s all they can come up with. We`ve all been in conversations with them, they all sound like that guy we heard on the stage last night.

Why not blame Hillary Clinton for everything? Well, because you won`t sound like a serious person if you do that. But Donald Trump has not spent one waking moment of his life as a serious person.

He has no idea how serious people think. He has no idea how serious people sound. When is the last time you heard a presidential candidate`s retort on the debate stage be "why not?"

The answer is never. It was that Trump being ignoramus impulse to say something, anything. That`s what wise guys always feel in every argument. The wise guy just needs to say something.

It doesn`t need to make sense, it doesn`t have to be smart, but they have to hear their voice pushing back against another person`s. So, Trump, the wise guy said "why not?" about blaming Hillary Clinton for everything.

After which, anything he might try to blame her for then appears as ridiculous as his impulsive, why not? The two words he simply couldn`t stop himself from saying because the wise guy had to say something,

And that was the best he had. And that is Donald Trump`s problem. Not that he didn`t do enough homework because there is no amount of homework he could possibly do that could change who he is.

That could stop him from the irresistible impulses that pass through a wise guy like Donald Trump. Nothing in debate prep could stop Donald Trump from saying this.


CLINTON: Maybe he doesn`t want the American people, all of you watching tonight to know that he`s paid nothing in federal taxes.

Because the only years that anybody`s ever seen were a couple of years when he had to turn them over to state authorities when he was trying to get a casino license, and they showed he didn`t pay any federal income tax. So, if he`s paid --

TRUMP: That makes me smart.


O`DONNELL: There were several options for Donald Trump there, that makes me smart was not one of them. He could have said, I`ve paid a lot of taxes, believe me. He wouldn`t have to specify what year.

He wouldn`t have to specify whether they were local property taxes, he wouldn`t even have to specify whether they were just sales taxes like on jet fuel for his plane.

He could have just said I have paid a lot of taxes. And he was offered more than one opportunity to say that, and instead he said in response to Hillary Clinton citing the public evidence that he pays no taxes, he said nothing to challenge the idea that he pays no taxes.

Everything he then said presumed that to be true, that he pays no taxes. That makes me smart. Well, it might make him a very smart income tax filer with very smart accountants for someone with no plans to ever run for president.

But if Donald Trump has paid no federal income taxes for decades as the evidence indicates, that is not a smart choice for a presidential candidate.

And that is one of the reasons why Donald Trump is hiding his tax returns that he claims are under audit even though there is absolutely no proof that there is an audit of Donald Trump`s taxes going on.

The exquisite Donald Trump irony of the statement "that makes me smart" is that saying those words in that debate at that moment, in fact, could not make him more stupid.

The single stupidest debater in the history of televised presidential debates. And the only one to ever say that makes me smart in a presidential debate. Lester Holt asked Donald Trump a question that the Trump campaign had to see coming for five years.


HOLT: Mr. Trump, for five years, you perpetuated a false claim that the nation`s first black president was not a natural-born citizen. You questioned his legitimacy.

In the last couple of weeks, you acknowledged what most Americans have accepted for years, the president was born in the United States. Can you tell us what took you so long?

TRUMP: I will tell you very -- just a very simple to say Sidney Blumenthal who works for the campaign and close -- very close friend of Secretary Clinton.


O`DONNELL: Yes, Donald Trump went on to speak 412 words about President Obama`s birth, and he never came close to answering Lester Holt`s question.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HOLT: I`ll let you respond, it`s important, but I just want to get the answer here. The birth certificate was produced in 2011, you continued to tell the story and questioned the president`s legitimacy in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 --

TRUMP: Yes --

HOLT: As recently as January. So, the question is, what changed your mind? --

TRUMP: Well, nobody was --


O`DONNELL: And Trump spoke again, but he did not come close to answering that question. And so it remains incumbent tonight on the next debate moderator to follow up, to ask Donald Trump exactly the same question, word for word, that he refused to answer last night.

Can you tell us what took you so long? What you saw last night is that Donald Trump has no answer to that question.

And perhaps, as important, no one in the Trump campaign has been able to come up with one, been able to write an answer to that question for Donald Trump because it is an unanswerable question.

The truth is that a pathological liar relentlessly told a racist lie for five years and lied about it in detail to the point of lying about sending investigators to Hawaii.

Lied year in and year out and suddenly, recently, because his presidential campaign adviser said he had to do this to keep his campaign alive.

He bent to the will of those advisors and said President Obama was born in the United States, and nothing more. No apology, no explanation of why he told the lie for five years.

Pathological lying is the Donald Trump illness that no one in his campaign can cure. Donald Trump`s campaign staff will have to live with the shame of their choice for the rest of their lives.

The choice to work very hard to try to elect an incompetent, ignorant, racist, pathological liar to be president of the United States.

The choice to work for Donald Trump is unlike any other choice made by a campaign professional in the history of politics in the United States of America.

It is a choice of this hate-filled campaign to put the most dangerous man in the history of American politics in the White House, in possession of the nuclear codes.

A campaign to leave that dangerous, emotional, rage-filled, childish, ignoramus in a position of having six minutes or less to decide how to respond to a potential nuclear threat to this country, including the possibility of a false alarm.

Which we have had more than once in the history of our nuclear weapons poised for launch at any moment. A man with a truly sick set of ideas about the world and about people that no one on his campaign staff has been able to change his mind about.


HOLT: Earlier this month, you said, she doesn`t have "a presidential look". She`s standing here right now, what did you mean by that?

TRUMP: She doesn`t have the look --


O`DONNELL: So, he meant by that, exactly what he said. She doesn`t have the look. This was a likely question that a competent campaign staff would have prepared Donald Trump to answer with deflection, because there`s no other way.

And instead, he insulted Hillary Clinton and women everywhere over something imaginary. Over something somewhere deep in his dysfunctional brain, something Donald Trump calls "the look".

If Hillary Clinton doesn`t have the look, then Margaret Thatcher didn`t have the look, and Indira Gandhi didn`t have the look, Golda Meir didn`t have the look.

But after insisting that Hillary Clinton didn`t have the look, Donald Trump went on to say that she didn`t have the stamina which Hillary Clinton then handled masterfully.


CLINTON: He tried to switch from looks to stamina, but this is a man who has called women pigs, slobs and dogs, and someone who has said pregnancy is an inconvenience to employers. Who had said --

TRUMP: I never said that.


O`DONNELL: Of course he did say that, all of that.


TRUMP: Pregnancy is never -- it`s a wonderful thing for the woman, it`s a wonderful thing for the husband, it`s certainly an inconvenience for a business. And whether people want to say that or not, the fact is, it is an inconvenience for a person that is running a business.


O`DONNELL: So yes, he said it, and Hillary Clinton wasn`t finished.


CLINTON: And one of the worst things he said was about a woman in a beauty contest. He loves beauty contests, supporting them and hanging around them, and he called this woman Miss Piggy. Then he called her Miss housekeeping because she was Latina. Donald, she has a name.

TRUMP: Where did you find this? --

CLINTON: Her name is Alicia Machado --

TRUMP: Where did you find this? --

CLINTON: And she has become a U.S. citizen, and you can bet --

TRUMP: Oh, really? --

CLINTON: She`s going to vote --


CLINTON: This November --



O`DONNELL: And here from the poisoned mind of Donald Trump and presumably his campaign advisors, here was his response.


TRUMP: You know, Hillary --

HOLT: And --


Final question --

TRUMP: Is hitting me with tremendous commercials. Some of it said in entertainment, some of it said -- somebody who`s been very vicious to me, Rosie O`Donnell, I said very tough things to her and I think everybody would agree that she deserves it and nobody feels sorry for her.


O`DONNELL: She deserves it, yes. That is what every man guilty of spousal abuse always thinks. I`ve talked to prosecutors who`ve handled these cases. I`ve talked to defense lawyers who represent these guys -- she deserves it.

That`s what they say. That is what enables them to do what they do to women, women they once loved. Mothers of their children. She deserves it. Donald Trump believes that about every abusive thing that he has ever said about anyone, about any woman.

She deserves it. And what he said last night in those words, he shamed every person associated with his campaign, including his children when he said everybody would agree.

Those were his words, everybody would agree she deserves it. He has said repeatedly that Rosie O`Donnell deserves every vile thing that he has ever said about her, and he believes that.

Everybody would agree with that. He believes that because presumably, everyone in his family, in his campaign office, on his campaign plane, his campaign manager, all of them, everybody, they all agree with that.

And it should be presumed by the news media that they do. That Kellyanne Conway and Ivanka Trump and every other woman who is working hard to make Donald Trump the next president of the United States agrees with that.

She deserves it, that they all agree with the verbal abuser that she deserves it. And if they don`t agree, then step forward now and tell us that now.

If Ivanka Trump and the Trump children do not agree that she deserves it, then tell the 84 million people who heard your father say that last night, that you don`t agree.

If Kellyanne Conway does not agree that she deserves it, then tell the 84 million people who heard that last night that she doesn`t agree.

Tell the 84 million people that no one deserves it, or live the rest of your lives with the shame that Donald Trump deserves for everything he has said about Rosie O`Donnell and other women.

Live with that shame because Donald Trump said everybody agrees with him, and that means you. We`ll be right back.


O`DONNELL: Tonight, another major, and in this case, historic endorsement for Hillary Clinton from the largest newspaper in the battleground state of Arizona.

The "Arizona Republic" has endorsed the Democrat for president for the first time since it began publication in 1890, their choice, Hillary Clinton.

The latest Nbc News/"Wall Street Journal" Marist poll of Arizona taken earlier this month shows Donald Trump at 42 percent, Hillary Clinton at 41 percent.

Coming up, David Fahrenthold will join us with his latest expose of the Trump Foundation and former Mexican President Vicente Fox will join us.



CLINTON: He made it very clear that he didn`t prepare for that debate.


You know, at one point he was kind of digging me for spending time off the campaign trail to get prepared. But just trying to keep track of everything he says took a lot of time and effort.


And I said, yes, you know what? I did prepare, and I`ll tell you something else I prepared for, I prepared to be president of the United States, and I think that`s good!



O`DONNELL: Joining us now, Cornell Belcher, president of Brilliant Corners Research and Strategies and a former pollster for Obama 2012 campaign.

And Rick Wilson, Republican strategist and contributor to the website "Heat Street", he`s an adviser to Evan McMullin; an independent presidential candidate.

And Rick, my point in the earlier segment was, I don`t think I care about what debate prep could have done for Donald Trump because he couldn`t get the poison out of him.


O`DONNELL: And the poison was going to come out no matter how many index cards you had him memorize.

WILSON: There is no better Donald Trump. If you -- if you bring a hyena puppy into your house, it`s still a hyena.


WILSON: And this guy is always going to break, he`s always going to lose his mind at some point, and he had 20 minutes of debate as Stuart Stevens says for 90 minute of that.

And after that 20 minutes of prep was over, he was just pure hot cray and the whole thing went downhill.

O`DONNELL: And Cornell, we saw what Hillary Clinton could do, but we knew she could do that. I didn`t have a moment of surprise watching her through this debate, especially having watched her through the 2008 debates, all the way to the end with President Obama.

And then in the primaries this time. And so she was prepped and -- but doing homework is who Hillary Clinton is. It`s very consistent with who she is, what we saw on that stage.

CORNELL BELCHER, PRESIDENT, BRILLIANT CORNERS RESEARCH & STRATEGIES: Well, I mean, she`s prepared. I mean, she has -- she knows the issues and she`s prepared to be president. I`ve got to go back to Trump here for a moment. And again, just as someone who does campaign for a living.

I`m confused as to what the strategy going into it is. I mean, it`s not about one debate, but about strategy. So, what do you have to do, right? And Trump has to do a couple of things.

You know, he`s got to do better among women, right? He`s got to do better among college-educated white folks who`ve been breaking for Republicans, who are uncomfortable with his lack of depth and sort of the extent of racism around his campaign.

And he`s got to do better with non-white voters, right? On all those accounts, I don`t know how he expanded his tent. I mean, he attacked a woman for being -- for her weight.

And it was a two-fold because she also happens to be Latino, and he called her a housekeeper, and he went after, you know, Secretary Clinton for her - - for her stamina.

I mean, there was nothing in that last night that says, I mean, from a strategic standpoint they were thinking about what it is he has to do to actually improve his position in the electorate. It was quite stunning to me.

O`DONNELL: OK, so he went on Fox News this morning to do repair work on that bad performance last night, and here`s what he said about that Latina woman who was Miss Universe. He wanted to straighten out the mess he made last night. Let`s listen to this.


TRUMP: That person was a Miss Universe person, and she was the worst we ever had, the worst. The absolute worst.

She was impossible and she was a Miss Universe contestant and ultimately a winner who they had a tremendously difficult time with as Miss Universe.

So, Hillary went back into the years and she found this because this was many years ago and found the girl and talked about her like she was Mother Teresa. And it wasn`t quite that way, but that`s OK, you know, Hillary has to do what she has to do.


O`DONNELL: So Rick, he really knows how to fix a problem.

WILSON: You know, there`s nothing I think women love more than being told they`re fat or that they`re housekeepers. I mean, this is a -- this is a sure fire winner for most women.

This is a guy who absolutely -- I mean, he set the dumpster on fire and then he poured tires on top of it this morning. It`s just a remarkable exhibition.

I can`t imagine Kellyanne Conway just stealing a line from somebody, wasn`t like laying on her hotel room floor in a (INAUDIBLE) position surrounded by many bar bottles.

This is a guy who just has a disastrous knack for exaggerating what he`s done wrong, and then he emphasizes it even farther.

O`DONNELL: Let`s listen on what President Obama said today because what you saw in the Democratic reaction General Byd‚n, President Obama was very clearly they think they had a win here. Let`s listen to this.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: She`s serious. She does her homework. And she`s got a vision to put people back to work and make sure that the economy`s working for everybody and not just the few.

And I would say that the other guy doesn`t have the preparation, the temperament or, you know, the core values of inclusion and making everybody, you know, have opportunity that would take our country forward.


O`DONNELL: And Cornell, the President is going to be saying that everyday in one form or another on the campaign trail. And that`s not something where the Trump campaign has -- has a version, a surrogate version like that that they can go to.

CORNELL BELCHER, PRESIDENT, BRILLIANT CORNERS RESEARCH AND STRATEGIES: No. I mean the president -- we enter into an election cycle where it`s been a long time as you know Lawrence, that we`ve had a sitting president who has a popularity that can go out on the road. I mean he`s 54 percent to 58 percent job approval right now.

And his favorable`s are remarkable. And his wife`s favorable`s are probably even better, actually. So him going out they`re talking -- talking about her, typically for millennials and minority voters. And those low-turnout propensity voters that he was so good at bringing into the electoral system especially those younger voters. I mean that is gold and that is where they can use him the most.

But also do want to caution a little bit here is that you know we make a big deal of debates. But how many voters out there, you know, were really introduced to Donald Trump? I mean we -- he is neck and neck in a lot of polling right now.

And he is exactly what he has been for the last several months, and we have not moved the needle. I don`t think anyone is saying that, you know, they`re going to support Donald Trump because he has, you know, the best answers and understanding to the issues.

O`DONNELL: That is a necessary note of caution by a lot of scorecards, John Kerry won all three Presidential debates --


O`DONNELL: -- in his year. Rick Wilson, Cornell Belcher, thank you both very much for joining us tonight. I really appreciate it.

BELCHER: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, we`re going to have former President of Mexico, Vincete Fox will be here. Also David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post as I mentioned has a new dig into the Trump Foundation. This is an astonishing piece of news that could involve a violation of tax law and the Trump Foundation.


O`DONNELL: Time for tonight`s Campaign War Room. This morning on Fox News, Donald Trump reacted to the bad reviews of his performance at last night`s debate.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE 2016: I thought it went well. I mean I had some hostile questions. But that`s okay.

Well he didn`t ask her about the e-mails at all. He didn`t ask her about her scandals. He didn`t ask her about the Benghazi deal that she destroyed.

I don`t know if you saw that in the room, but my microphone was terrible. I think -- I wonder was it setup that way on purpose. But I don`t want to believe in conspiracy theories of course, but it was much lower than hers. And it was crackling and she didn`t have that problem.

He gave me very unfair questions at the end. The last three, four questions, but, you know, I`m not complaining about that.


O`DONNELL: A poll released today by CNN, done scientifically by a polling firm shows 62 percent of voters say Hillary Clinton won the debate, 27 percent say that Donald Trump won the debate. With 41 days left for the Campaign War Room.

Joining us tonight in the Last Word War Room is Elise Jordan, a veteran of Rand Paul`s Presidential Campaign War Room and MSNBC Political Analyst. Emily says we know, there are some junk polls out there on websites where anyone can just go on and vote about who won. And so the Trump supporters flood those websites. And he does well on the junk polls.

But the only one that is real is that CNN Poll. And that`s about as clear an audience verdict as you could get.

ELISE JORDAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, the first thing the Trump campaign should do if they`re going to be responsible and not commit political malpractice is level with Donald Trump and tell him you didn`t have as great of a performance as you`re publicly saying. We really have to do better next time.

They need to force him to do some preparation if, you know, he really there`s so many errors he made that were completely avoidable if he had just done the basic preparation that one would do for an important interview. He needs to do 90-minute prep sessions, full-length. So that he has the stamina to go toe to toe with Hillary Clinton for the duration of the debate.

Last night, he was like someone who needed to run a mile who had only trained for a 400-meter dash. So there really are so many little things that he thought he could coast through. But he just didn`t do it last night.

O`DONNELL: And he had Rudy Giuliani traveling with him tonight on his campaign stop where he had a big rally. But last night, let`s listen to what Rudy Giuliani said right after the debate.


RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NYC MAYOR: And if I were Donald Trump, I wouldn`t participate in another debate unless I was promised that the journalist would act like a journalist and not an incorrect, an ignorant fact checker. The moderator would have to promise that they would be a moderator and not a fact checker.


O`DONNELL: Elise, there`s Giuliani saying as clearly as he could in effect. I think Trump lost the debate tonight.

JORDAN: And I hope that Giuliani is getting that message across to Donald Trump because he needs advisers around him telling the truth and not being sycophants because he needs people to say, hey, you`ve got to do better. You aren`t going to be able to win if this is your performance against Hillary Clinton. And you show up looking utterly unprepared.

You know I`ve been in North Carolina doing focus groups with different voters. And a lot of the complaints I hear is, you know, Trump voters they want to vote for him. But they feel he doesn`t do basic homework that he needs to fulfill in order to make them be able to go to the, go and cast their ballot for Donald Trump in November.

O`DONNELL: Elise Jordan, thanks for joining us in the War Room tonight. Really appreciate it.

JORDAN: Thanks for having me.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, the former President of Mexico Vicente Fox joins us with his reaction to last night`s debate.



TRUMP: We will build the wall 100 percent. Who is going to pay for the wall? They may not know it yet, but the answer is Mexico.


O`DONNELL: That was Donald Trump tonight speaking to an audience of his supporters saying something that he did not dare say in last night`s debate. He`s also lied since the debate last night bragging about how he did talk about immigration.


TRUMP: A very big moment, very important moment, talking about a lot of very important subjects, including jobs, including immigration. One thing I got out, I think really the best was immigration -- illegal immigration, talked illegal immigration.


O`DONNELL: But Donald Trump did not talk about illegal immigration or the wall at all last night even though, apparently, in his dream version of the debate he did. Joining us now, via Skype from Mexico is President Vicente Fox. He was President of Mexico from 2000-2006.

President Fox, welcome to the program, and I`d like to get your reaction to last night`s debate. Were you surprised that Donald Trump did not mention those things about Mexico last night in the debate that he always does at his rallies?

VICENTE FOX, PRESIDENT OF MEXICO 2000-2006: Lawrence good night. Good night, America. Yes, I was surprised, because he quite -- he`d been using for the whole year`s time, maybe now he`s learning a little bit that that`s an absolute wrong and crazy idea. But then me just talk a little bit form on the D-Day

I think that numbers one and of course it`s not relevant. But I`m sure that he wore the blue, color of Democrat, and she wore the red color of Republicans. This could be some cross tantalizing. But more important impression we got here Mexico it was the beauty and the beast. She looked gracious.

She looked so presidential, elegant. And he was clumsy and helpless. This is very important message that we perceived in Mexico. And of course everybody here agrees all news and media agrees that Hillary took all the advantage and won the debate. But now she must work harder so that she makes sure that she will get in a fame (ph) a solid victory.

Because one of the problems we envision in this great nation of United States is governance. It`s governability. It`s crucial to come out of exact nation. You need then this capacity of having a strong support from people and from the rest of political actors. And yes, the world of trade was something else that we knowledge. Wherein he spoke about, that Mexico taxes U.S. imports into Mexico. That`s an absolute lie.

What we have is a sales tax exactly as the sales tax that you would have for imported products or for regular products. So, he lied there on a very suspicious way in trying to come out with his side of the story. Something else that what`s very important you notice and is about guns and gun control. It`s clear. All worldwide statistics show that those countries that exercise control over arms possession and have a real control over them are the ones who have much lower crime rates.

And he is still owes an apology to Mexico, even though that he didn`t mention that. What we have is a very strong reaction on Hispanic, all migrants, all Mexicans in United States to go to vote and to make sure that they will stop all this crazy ideas that could affect Mexico. And so this is what we saw on the debate.

O`DONNELL: Former President Vicente Fox, thank you very much for joining us tonight. And please join us here in the studio in New York whenever you`re in town. Really appreciate you joining us tonight, Mr. President, thank you.

FOX: Lawrence, thank you very much, and we will be there.

O`DONNELL: Thank you. Coming up, did the Trump Foundation break the law? David Fahrenthold has the story once again.


O`DONNELL: Breaking news tonight from Israel. Former Israeli President Shimon Peres died tonight. He suffered a stroke earlier this month. Shimon Peres was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 for his efforts to create peace in the Middle East. Shimon Peres was 93. We`ll be right back.



SHARYL ATTKISSON, PUBLIC AFFAIRS PROGRAM HOST: Are you confident that the Trump foundation has followed all charitable rules and laws?

TRUMP: Well, I hope so. I mean, my lawyers do it.


O`DONNELL: Donald Trump is much less confident tonight that the Trump foundation has followed the law. Thanks to the latest report in the Washington Post by David Fahrenthold who has made Donald Trump`s Charitable giving or lack thereof. The in-depth focus of his reporting. One of the mysteries of the Trump foundation has been why other people can companies filled the Trump foundation up with money while Donald Trump has been contributing nothing.

Joining us now with his latest findings David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post. So, David why has the others been filling up the Trump foundation with money?

DAVID FAHRENTHOLD, WASHINGTON POST REPORTER: Well we now know part of that answer is that is that for at least $2.3million worth of the money coming in to the Trump foundation. It was money that was owed to Donald Trump himself or to one of his businesses by someone he did business with. And he said no, don`t pay it to me, pay it to my foundation.

O`DONNELL: And the tax challenge there is you can do that as you put it in your article. It`s called assigning the income, but when you do that, you have to pay the income tax on it yourself as if it was received by you before it was passed to the foundation.

FAHRENTHOLD: That`s right. You have to, if it`s income due to you and you control where it goes, then it`s your income and you had to pay income taxes on it. You can take a charitable deduction. It may or may not wash out, but you have to assign the income and pay the taxes on it.

What we don`t know in this case is whether Trump paid income taxes on the bulk of that money, 1.19million of that 2.3. His campaign has not answered the question of whether he paid income tax.

O`DONNELL: And you did this reporting over the weekend. And the Trump story, the Trump campaign story changed during the course of the phone call that you were on with them especially about the Comedy Central money. The campaign then said to you that, oh, those income taxes were paid by Donald Trump before the income was assigned. Then you asked if you could see those tax returns to prove that those taxes were paid, and what was the answer you got?

FAHRENTHOLD: Absolutely not. That was the answer. And for the other, that`s only 400,000 of his 2.3 million. As I said, the other 1.9 million they just haven`t answered the question at all.

O`DONNELL: And there`s a new answer tonight from the Trump -- from Boris Epsteyn who was the person you were talking to about this. He has yet a third answer to the Comedy Central money. Let`s take a look at this.


BORIS EPSHTEYN, CAMPAIGN SENIOR ADVISOR TO DONALD TRUMP: There was no issue there. You must know that Comedy Central paid Trump productions. Trump productions paid income tax. And then Trump productions donated the money to the foundation. Mr. Trump does not has always followed all applicable rules and regulations on taxes.


O`DONNELL: And David, I could tell you, if Trump productions is like other so-called production corporations in Hollywood, they never pay any taxes at all. Those are strict pass-through corporations where all of the money is then in effect passed through as income to the person who runs it.

FAHRENTHOLD: Well the interesting thing is, if you look at the tax forms of Trump foundation. Comedy Central is listed as the donor. So it could be that they just didn`t do their paperwork right, but that`s the case. You`ve mentioned earlier that they had changed their story.

That was a really interesting part of this that when I called and said tell me about the examples or Trump directed the money that was due to him to his foundation. They actually said that never happened. And they had this long explanation of how Trump avoided that from ever happening.

And I said, "Were you sure it`s never happened?" And they said, "Well you have to prove us, you know, you go find a case where it proves us wrong." And I said, "Well, you know, here are some examples," and they did said, "Oh yes, well that`s right, that was an exception. I know we said never a minute ago, but there`s an exception."

O`DONNELL: Right. Yes. It`s an amazing interview to read as the story goes on. And so on the Trump Foundation of their records indicate that the money came directly from comedy central, not from Trump productions which is Boris Epshteyn`s new and I guess third story about this.

FAHRENTHOLD: That`s right. And the money, they recorded the full $400,000 coming in. So, that if there`s any tax withheld and paid at that time, it doesn`t show up in the Trump Foundation`s tax forms

O`DONNELL: David Fahrenthold, thank you very much for joining us you`re your latest scoop. We really appreciate it.


O`DONNELL: We`ll be right back.



STEPHEN COLBERT, COMEDIAN: He may not have prepared, but it also looked like he didn`t. Meanwhile, Hillary was so prepared, my new nickname for her is Preparation H.


O`DONNELL: Stephen Colbert, who normally tapes his show around 6:00 p.m. waited late last night, went live after the debate last night. MSNBC`s live coverage continues now into The 11th Hour. Brian Williams will be joined by Robert Costa of the Washington Post with reporting on the Trump campaign`s new plans and the NBC news interview with the Ms. Universe winner who became part of that debate last night.

"THE 11TH HOUR" with Brian Williams is live, and it is next.