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The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, Transcript 10/17/2016

Guests: Indira Lakshmanan, Charlie Sykes, Matthew Garahan, Mike Allen, Jim Messina, Josh Singer

Show: THE LAST WORD WITH LAWRENCE O`DONNELL Date: October 17, 2016 Guest: Indira Lakshmanan, Charlie Sykes, Matthew Garahan, Mike Allen, Jim Messina, Josh Singer

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Lawrence --


MADDOW: That is how it works, that is sometimes how it works even after bad stuff happens, sometimes particularly after bad stuff happens.

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.

O`DONNELL: Hey, Rachel, I know you never -- on a Sunday night, you never miss an episode of "Family Guy". I know you, I know you never miss.

But on a busy election season, I think it`s possible maybe with the heavy reading you have to do now that last night maybe you missed last night`s --

MADDOW: The heavy reading I have to do --


MADDOW: Yes, I know --


O`DONNELL: On a Sunday night, and I`m thinking it`s possible you missed it. And --

MADDOW: I will be -- OK --

O`DONNELL: And I`m going to -- I`m going to save the day for you.

MADDOW: I look forward to being --

O`DONNELL: Because --

MADDOW: Updated.

O`DONNELL: I am going to show you the clip from "Family Guy" last night when "Family Guy" gets on the "Access Hollywood" bus with --

MADDOW: Oh, God --

O`DONNELL: Donald Trump. And you`ve got to see this.

MADDOW: As I said, thanks, Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Thank you, Rachel.



O`DONNELL: Well, Donald Trump is changing the subject to rigged elections, and he wants that to be the subject because it`s changing the subject from accusations of sexual assault by Donald Trump and Donald Trump himself bragging about sexual assault on video.

I hope you don`t mind if I don`t change the subject for Donald Trump.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: This is a rigged election, folks, OK?

JON HUSTED, SECRETARY OF STATE, OHIO: I am in charge of elections in Ohio, and they`re not going to be rigged.

D. TRUMP: People that have died ten years ago are still voting, illegal immigrants are voting.

HUSTED: Are there cases of voter fraud? Absolutely there are cases of voter fraud, but it`s rare.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are as a statistical matter more likely to be hit by lightning.

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: The media is obsessed with him, I might in fact -- the process he`s talking about --

KELLYANNE CONWAY, TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: He just can`t get fair coverage.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, that`s a victim.

D. TRUMP: The media is trying to rig the election by giving credence to false stories, events that never happened. Just you do understand that, OK?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We`ll probably believe Trump more if while he talks, he wasn`t groping the air the entire time.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: He`s made some comments about the way some of the women who are accusing him look.

MELANIA TRUMP, WIFE OF DONALD TRUMP: Well, that he`s wrong, he will say it as he feels it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you feel you`re modeling appropriate and positive behavior for today`s youth?



M. TRUMP: I give him many advice, he will do what he wants to do on that.

D. TRUMP: I`ve got to do some few things, just in case I start kissing her.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s the cheapest breath mint, I thought you were a billionaire.


O`DONNELL: Now, that last clip of course was "Family Guy`s" take last night on the Trump on a bus video, you`ve got to see this thing. We will show you the rest of that "Family Guy" ride on the Trump bus later.

But first, Melania speaks. So, Melania Trump`s husband gets caught on the "Access Hollywood" video bragging about sexual assault about exactly how he commits sexual assault.

He describes his methodology in detail, that video has been played for the world ten days ago, and Melania Trump`s husband is not in trouble with her because in the Trump household, there is apparently no such thing as sexual assault.


COOPER: In terms of what he actually said on the tape, I`m not saying he did it, but what he said, the behavior that he described to you, is that sexual assault?

M. TRUMP: No, that`s not a sexual assault.


O`DONNELL: That`s what Donald Trump said at the debate when Anderson Cooper asked him if he understood that he was admitting to sexual assault in the "Access Hollywood" video, and he said no.

He wasn`t admitting to sexual assault. Melania Trump`s variation tonight on the locker room defense was to call Donald Trump`s bragging about sexual assault boy talk.

And so, we now have a unanimous opinion so far among all of the Donald Trump relatives who have spoken publicly about this, that sexual assault is simply locker room talk or now boy talk. Everyone does it, everyone brags about sexual assault, that`s their view.

It is hard to think of how tonight`s softball interview with Melania Trump could have been any softer including when she was helped through her conspiracy theory about why nine women have now come forward to accuse Donald Trump of some form of sexual assault.


M. TRUMP: He would never do that, but everything was organized and put together to hurt him, to hurt his candidacy.

COOPER: Organized by the opposition? --

M. TRUMP: By opposition, yes.

COOPER: The media, Clinton.

M. TRUMP: Media, Clinton, yes.

COOPER: You think they`re working together?

M. TRUMP: Yes, of course.


O`DONNELL: It was over two months ago when Donald Trump promised that within two weeks Melania Trump would have a press conference to answer questions and prove that she never violated American immigration law by entering the country illegally or working in the country illegally.


D. TRUMP: Let me tell you one thing, she has got it so documented, so she`s going to have a little news conference over the next couple of weeks, that`s because -- that`s because I love it. I love it.


O`DONNELL: She has got it so documented, of course Donald Trump knew that the news media could be relied on to forget about that. And if he and Melania just let enough time past, which they obviously did.

And so, tonight, no one asked Melania to produce her documents, she`s got it so documented, no one asked her to produce her immigration records to prove that her immigration history with the United States is completely legitimate and legal.

She obviously would never have agreed to an interview with anyone who would be so impertinent and would have asked her to produce those records.

And so, they`re at home somewhere and maybe beside Donald Trump`s tax returns and forgotten by most of the media. Melania Trump went unchallenged tonight when she said that no woman should make accusations of sexual assault without what she called evidence.


M. TRUMP: Of the assault should be taken care of in a court of law. And to accuse, no matter who it is, a man or a woman, without evidence, it`s damaging and it`s unfair.


O`DONNELL: Of course, every woman who has accused Donald Trump of sexual assault does have evidence, though you never would have learned that in that interview.

And that evidence is their own testimony to what happened. That is what most evidence is in most criminal trials -- testimony. People saying what they saw or heard.

And what we have in each of these cases is the eyewitness testimony of each of the victims of the alleged sexual assault.

That is very serious evidence and would be treated very seriously in any courtroom, but it is not proof beyond a reasonable doubt. And so, is Melania Trump doing what most people do and just blurring the distinction between evidence and proof?

Is Melania Trump saying that no woman should ever accuse a man of sexual assault if that woman does not have proof beyond a reasonable doubt?

Is Melania Trump saying that no woman should ever accuse a man of sexual assault if that assault happens the way most assaults happen, when the woman is alone with the man with no other witnesses?

Is Melania Trump saying we should always ignore every accusation of sexual assault made by a woman who is the only witness to her sexual assault? We don`t know.

Because softball interviews don`t pursue questions like that. As Donald Trump has been sinking in recent polls, presumably because of his own bragging about sexual assault and the sexual assault allegations against him, he has tried to change the subject to how the election is rigged and the media has for the most part gone along with that change of subject.

So, Donald Trump`s media manipulation is mostly working once again. Which subject do you think Donald Trump would like the media to be talking about? Accusations of sexual assault against him or his accusation that the election is rigged?

Which one of those do you think he likes better as a subject for these kinds of shows? That`s why he is talking about a rigged election.

That`s why he`s saying these crazy things about the election being rigged, along with the possibility that he actually might believe the election is being rigged.

He needs the media to change the subject. He needs the media to stop talking about sexual assault, which has destroyed him in the polls.

The polls indicate that talking about a rigged election though will not be enough to move Donald Trump back up in those polls.

Yesterday, a new "Nbc News" poll came out showing Hillary Clinton within a 11-point lead. Today, a Monmouth University poll came out showing Hillary Clinton with a 12-point lead.

And tonight, a "Cbs News" poll just came out showing Hillary Clinton with a 9-point lead. Joining us now, Charlie Sykes, radio host on "Wtmjam" in Milwaukee and an Msnbc contributor.

And Indira Lakshmanan, op-ed columnist for the "Boston Globe". Indira, I just wanted to get your reaction to what we heard from Melania Trump tonight, especially the point where she says basically that no one should make these accusations with what she called evidence, and I think she means proof.

INDIRA LAKSHMANAN, OP-ED COLUMNIST, BOSTON GLOBE: Well, right, of course, it makes no sense. I mean, remember, this is the complete double standard because Donald Trump and his entire campaign have been making the same sorts of allegations against Bill Clinton from the start.

Down to sitting Bill Clinton`s accusers at the last debate front and center, trying to throw Hillary Clinton off her game or whatever they were trying to do, so, they can`t have it both ways.

Either sexual assault where the woman is the only witness other than her alleged attacker is -- the woman`s own testimony is either legitimate or it`s not -- it`s not legitimate.

I mean, you can`t have it one way for one candidate and one for the other. But I want to pick up on what you`re saying about him throwing out this accusation of a rigged election.

And I think this is really important and really dangerous. And it`s of course not the first time that Donald Trump has said the election was rigged.

Remember back in Iowa when Ted Cruz won the Iowa caucus, that was the first time that Donald Trump said it`s rigged.

There was no way that Donald Trump could have lost. And I think it basically comes down to the fact that in Donald Trump`s mind, he`s always a winner, he`s never a loser, he always denigrates everyone else as a loser.

Remember, the reason "The Apprentice" didn`t win an Emmy was because the Emmys were rigged. In August when Hillary Clinton polled ahead after the DNC Convention, he first started to talk about the elections being rigged, and it`s come back again now because once again she`s ahead in the polls.

So, he has to create this narrative to justify what looks like it`s going to be his defeat, and also to make his supporters have a place to put their anger. What`s really dangerous is what comes next.

O`DONNELL: Yes, and Charlie --


O`DONNELL: This new Monmouth --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Poll that shows a significant Hillary Clinton lead as they all do --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Nationally. Also says this about the Trump allegations, it asked people it polled, are the Trump allegations of sexual assault true?

Definitely, probably true amounted to 62 percent, definitely, probably not true 26 percent, don`t know, 8 percent, and so --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Charlie, that poll says anything you can do to change the subject.

SYKES: Yes, absolutely, look. This election is over for the Republicans. The big question they have is how much are they going to sully themselves?

I mean, I remember back in the 1990s when Republicans said things like character matters and you know, thought that Bill Clinton`s treatment of women was a big issue.

What you`re seeing now is an abandonment of that moral high ground. And the question is, is it worth it at this point? I mean, it`s not just with Donald Trump is doing with his own campaign. It`s this massive vortex of lunacy that he`s created for sucking other Republicans in.

And whether or not over the next three weeks they`re going to go along with this. Whether they`re going to buy the rigging, whether they`re going to, you know, pursue this candidate down this rabbit hole of denial and alienation and paranoia and misdirection.

O`DONNELL: There`s also a poll on this question of rigging the election. The "Politico"-Morning Consult poll on rigging the election, they asked, could the election be stolen from Trump?

And you see what might be maybe something of a Trump supporter versus everyone else breakdown here. Strongly somewhat agree 41 percent, strongly somewhat disagree 49 percent.

SYKES: Right --

O`DONNELL: Don`t know, 10 percent. And let`s just listen to what the Ohio Republican Secretary of State said about this. Let`s listen to this.


HUSTED: We have so many safeguards in place in our election system, it`s bipartisan, it`s transparent. And there`s just no justification for concern about widespread voter fraud.

I actually intend on voting for Donald Trump, but I`m just remorseful or regretful that he`s saying things like this, which really undermine the potential that he has as a candidate, they`re not the kinds of things that he should be saying.


O`DONNELL: Indira, he maybe --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: That Jon Husted may become a star on November 9th if he`s the Republican Secretary of State who`s willing to say that after this election.

LAKSHMANAN: Well, remember, Ohio again was the subject of concern back in 2004 when John Kerry was known to have at the time quietly have nursed suspicions that there was some problems with voting machines in Ohio that might have cost him the election.

So, it`s not the first time that we`ve heard about --

SYKES: Yes --

LAKSHMANAN: Irregularities. But I have to say that in terms of the country getting on board with this notion of a rigged election, there is really very little evidence to back this up.

I mean, there is one legal scholar who has dedicated his career to studying supposed voting irregularities and among a billion votes has only found 31 cases of voter fraud.

So, it is really hard to find evidence of this. In that same "Politico"- Morning Consult poll that you mentioned, Lawrence, it was really striking to me that 75 percent of the Republicans who were polled actually believed that rigging was possible.

I mean, you have to --

O`DONNELL: Right --

LAKSHMANAN: Go back 140 years to t Ulysses Grant to a time when he won the electoral college and his opponent Samuel Tilden won the popular vote when somebody really had grounds for saying, hey, here`s the problem and even then Americans accepted it.

O`DONNELL: Charlie --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Republicans on November 9th assuming Hillary Clinton wins --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: As you now expect her to --

SYKES: Yes --

O`DONNELL: We will be looking to people like Jon Husted and other Republicans Secretaries --

SYKES: Right --

O`DONNELL: Of State, and people like you and others, Republicans in media to address this issue of how legitimate is this victory? What do you expect to hear?

SYKES: Well, I -- look, I do think that there are legitimate concerns about voter fraud, but also this is not what this is about right now.

This is about delegitimizing the election. This is about rationalizing his defeat because there`s nothing gracious about Donald Trump.

The chances of him graciously conceding are zero. And I do think that there`s going to be tremendous pressure on other Republicans to say we need to have a bipartisan moment here to understand that the peaceful transfer of power is a fundamental element of our democracy and we need to defend that against Donald Trump`s cynicism.

O`DONNELL: Charlie Sykes and Indira Lakshmanan, thank you both very much for joining us tonight, really appreciate it.


O`DONNELL: Coming up, Donald Trump might have a strategy after all. Not a strategy to actually win the White House, but a strategy of what to do with his followers, how to make money from his followers, starting on November 9th if he doesn`t win the White House.

And in the war room tonight, the Clinton campaign has a very tough choice, and yes, even when you have a lead, and sometimes a big lead, you still have very tough choices.

Do they try to expand the map for Democratic victories in traditionally red states or do they stay with the safe choice of just fighting the battleground states.

That is a tough choice for them to make. Juma Sina(ph) who was in President Obama`s war room will join us tonight.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The time has come for the Sarah Palin network.


SARAH PALIN, FORMER ALASKA GOVERNOR: Hello, my fellow Americans, it`s me. You know, ever since I won the silver medal in last year`s vice presidential election --


I`ve made it my goal to connect with as many people of this great nation as possible. It just seems like the next logical step was to launch my own network.


O`DONNELL: Is that now the objective of the badly-trailing Trump presidential campaign? Is it now a campaign to launch the Trump TV Network?

A new report today says that Donald Trump`s son-in-law is already discussing that idea with people who can make it happen.

Here is one of the shows that Tina Fey describes for her version of the Sarah Palin Network that you can actually really imagine being an actual show on the Trump Network.


PALIN: Do you hate gauche journalism? Well, get ready for paid journalist, I got you, right, reiterated my interviews with journalists to make them look like they were the ones that were woefully unprepared.


So, Katie, what newspapers do you read?


It`s an easy question, Katie.


Well, better luck next time, gotcha.




O`DONNELL: We will be joined next by the man who got today`s scoop on the latest planning for the Trump network.


O`DONNELL: Nothing Donald Trump has done during the debate season has made any sense at all if Donald Trump is actually trying to win the presidency.

He has used that valuable time attacking Hillary Clinton in the least effective way possible by reminding everyone that Bill Clinton has a history of marital indiscretions.

But that decision, that Trump decision makes sense if Donald Trump knows he can`t actually win the election and simply wants to win the audience.

The audience that hates all things Clinton, an audience that he might be able to turn into the next Trump business, starting on November 9th.

The "Financial Times" reports today Donald Trump`s son-in-law Jared Kushner has informally approached one of the media industry`s top deal makers about the prospect of setting up a Trump television network after the presidential election in November.

Joining us now, the co-author of that article Matthew Garahan; he is the global media editor for the "Financial Times".

Also with us, the legendary Mike Allen; chief White House correspondent for "Politico". Matthew, tell us the story, what`s happened so far?

MATTHEW GARAHAN, GLOBAL MEDIA EDITOR, FINANCIAL TIMES: What`s happened in the last couple of months, a lot of reports about the Trump camp thinking about a TV network.

And we heard that Jared Kushner, Donald Trump`s son-in-law, Ivanka`s husband had contacted a guy called Aryeh Bourkoff who is one of the big media deal makers.

I guess put together $300 billion worth of deals, he`s the guy you go to see if you want to raise a lot of money, if you want to get something like this started.

To sound him out about setting something up -- about setting up a network. And the conversation didn`t last very long, didn`t go in any particular direction.

But it suggests that the Trump camp and Jared Kushner in particular are thinking very seriously about a post-November 8th life for Donald Trump and for the Donald Trump movement for the --

O`DONNELL: And Mike --

GARAHAN: Populists movement he`s started.

O`DONNELL: You look at the so-called campaign strategy, which, as I say makes no sense unless, and then you look at who`s involved. Here`s this guy, you know, Bannon whose experiences entirely basically in running "Breitbart".

You look at Jared Kushner, the media savvy -- owns a media --


Already --

GARAHAN: Yes, "New York Observer" --

O`DONNELL: Yes, son-in-law of Donald Trump. You look at Donald Trump, who loves, you know, doing this kind of thing, it all makes a certain sense.

MIKE ALLEN, CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO: It absolutely does. And first, congratulations to Matthew for putting this on the front page of tomorrow`s print edition of the --


ALLEN: Around the world. But Lawrence, people are talking today about this as if this is a plan B for Trump.


ALLEN: Like I am excited that you`re excited about it, I think it`s a real big deal because it makes so much sense.

And as we saw in the previous segment, as your viewers well know, the map and the math for Trump are so bleak that you`re starting to wonder if this is plan A. That --


ALLEN: That for Donald Trump --


ALLEN: Who knows the power of media in the last half, I think this was significant in the last debate. He bragged about the fact that he had 25 million people between Twitter and Facebook. That`s a nice start to a news network audience.



ALLEN: So, he has whatever he wants. Have a big following, an owned- audience, and at the very end here, he`s inciting them all, like blaming the rest of the media, and it`s a perfect layout, and there`s going to be a huge opening.

That audience we`ve talked on this show about how that audience is not going to go away. They`re going to be hungry, and Donald Trump wants to feed them.

I think it`s funny though and telling that the way this leaked, the fact that -- and Lawrence, you`ve been involved in campaigns, I can`t think of being more off-message than three weeks --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALLEN: In a wake up out of -- out from --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALLEN: Your election day and to be thinking about --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALLEN: What you`re going to be doing next, though, it`s not --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALLEN: What you should be doing, that the reason this leaked was Trump looking for money. So --


ALLEN: Trump is not going to invest --


ALLEN: In it --


ALLEN: But he wants someone else to.

O`DONNELL: Right, and Matthew, the --


There are as economists say, huge barriers to entry --


Regarding a network. It`s a really tough thing to do. We --


O`DONNELL: We get that.


O`DONNELL: But there`s also the Glenn Beck version of this which is --


O`DONNELL: More of a website or anyone can do that. And what I wonder about on the network side is, has Donald Trump become commercially untouchable?

If I -- if I give him a cable channel in my -- in my cable system, no matter how obtained, no matter how much profit I make from it, do I get people, you know, cutting off, there`s just saying, no, I`m cutting off this cable system, I will not watch that cable --

GARAHAN: You might do, and "Comcast" famously never took Glenn Beck`s channel. I mean, Glenn Beck has been railing for a long time about how "Comcast" wouldn`t take his channel.

But Donald Trump doesn`t need a channel. Doesn`t need a carrier, doesn`t need a distributor. He can go and launch an app, he can launch, you know, the Netflix of Donald Trump, you know --

O`DONNELL: Yes, so, think outside of the box --


O`DONNELL: Of this kind of network which is just about impossible --

GARAHAN: He can launch a little reporting today that we did, we -- he aired that it`s much broader than just a network. It`s a media company and you think about what Stephen Bannon is doing with "Breitbart".

It`s a network of --


GARAHAN: Global right-wing website citizens surfing populist anger in France and then the U.K. With the U.K., France with the French National(ph). You know, you have -- Trump thinks something similar here, (INAUDIBLE) in the tens already.

O`DONNELL: Right --

GARAHAN: In the campaign --

O`DONNELL: Mike, why not just rename "Breitbart" Trump? And we`re done.

GARAHAN: It could --

ALLEN: TNN, yes. The -- I think Matthew is right about the idea of something broader. And you may have seen this great news SnapChat, channel on SnapChat Discover.

We the people just about this election is from now, and this Jim Vandehei was the founder of "Politico" --

GARAHAN: Yes, I miss him --

ALLEN: And they do the snap last --


ALLEN: Week, they got a lot of pickup, saying that what Donald Trump really wants is a media empire.


ALLEN: So, this is going to be the -- you`re right, that the barriers to entry now are much lower. You take "TheBlaze" --


ALLEN: Model that Glenn Beck --



ALLEN: I talked to experts today who said you could do that for around $20 million whereas the other end of the scale, the Oprah Network costs hundreds of millions.


ALLEN: So, you could do it for most little. But Lawrence, you know Donald Trump, he`s going to want to be on the kind of TV --

O`DONNELL: Right --

ALLEN: When you change the --


ALLEN: Channel. He`s going to be on --

O`DONNELL: The kind of TV he knows how to find.

ALLEN: Yes --

O`DONNELL: He doesn`t know how to find any of those --

ALLEN: Right --

O`DONNELL: Things, yes, that`s right --

ALLEN: Wouldn`t(ph) be easy --

O`DONNELL: Right, we`re going to have to leave it there, Mike --

ALLEN: Yes --

O`DONNELL: Allen and Michael Garahan, thank you both very much for joining us tonight, I really appreciate it --

ALLEN: I`m afraid that three weeks --

O`DONNELL: Coming up, we always know when Donald Trump is watching TV because he always tweets about what he`s mad about watching TV as --

ALLEN: Perhaps he`s not watching --

O`DONNELL: As he did with "Saturday Night Live", yes, and as he`s done with this program many times.

We can only imagine what he would have tweeted if he knew where to find "Family Guy" last night, when they got on the Trump "Access Hollywood bus, that`s coming up.


O`DONNELL: In tonight`s war room, go big or play it safe. That is the tough question that Hillary Clinton`s Campaign War Room faces right now tonight. Playing it safe would stick to a battleground state strategy focusing only on the must-win states.

The strategist who want to go big, want to expand the democrats electoral map and turn some red states blue for the first time in a very long time. And with Donald Trump complaining about a rigged election, going for an electoral college landslide seems to be getting more support in the the Clinton War Room.

The Clinton campaign announced today it is investing $2 million in Arizona, which has not voted for a democrat since 1996 and it is sending Michelle Obama, Bernie Sanders and Chelsea Clinton to campaign in Arizona this week. The Clinton War Room is also spending a million dollars in traditionally Republican states of Indiana and Missouri, and it is placing an ad buy in - - this is hard to believe, Texas which has not voted for a democrat since 1976 when Jimmy Carter won Texas.

Grendel (ph) Washington Post today, some are of the Clinton campaign are concerned that expanding the electoral map would take the focus away from the key battleground states where they are still struggling. New battleground polls today from Quinnipiac show Hillary Clinton six points ahead in Pennsylvania, 47 to 41, four points, only four points ahead in Florida, 48 to 44. And a new CNN poll in North Carolina shows Hillary Clinton just one point ahead, 48 to 47.

But in Ohio, the Quinnipiac poll shows Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump now tied at 45. And the CNN poll shows Donald Trump four points ahead there, 48 to 44. And with just 21 days left for the presidential campaign war room, joining us tonight in the Last Word War Room is Jim Messina, the former campaign manager for Obama, for America 2012 and he`s the co-chair of Hillary Clinton`s Super Pac priorities USA.

Jim, this is the big question. Go big or just, you know, beat out thosebattleground state victories, where do you come down on this?



MESSINA: Look in 2008 and 2012, the Obama campaign went big. We went and tried to win states and everyone thought we were crazy. In 2008, we went after Virginia, which hadn`t gone democratic in a generation and now that state is so purple that Donald Trump pulled out of it last week and he gave it to Hillary Clinton. So I think the state of Arizona is a state that I spent more time thinking about Arizona in 2012 when we just couldn`t make the play there.

It looks like the Clinton Campaign has decided to do that. And Lawrence I think it`s really important to the democratic party and it`s important to her campaign, too, because she`s trying to stretch Donald Trump`s resources and he`s starting to have to plug holes that nobody thought he`d ever have to plug, like in Utah. I mean Mitt Romney beat us by 48 percent in Utah.

And now there`s poll showing that race tied. And so he`s got to try to stop these holes that are springing up in his boat. And, you know, he`s in trouble here and I think the Clinton campaign is doing exactly what they should do, and that`s go big.

O`DONNELL: So, Arizona the state you once dreamed about. Hillary Clinton, latest poll, 39, Donald Trump 37, that comes against the backdrop of John McCain abandoning Donald Trump in Arizona, so you look at that and you would place that bet for Hillary Clinton in Arizona?

MESSINA: Absolutely. And Lawrence the other number we haven`t talked about yet is Donald Trump is trailing with Latino voters by 50 points nationally. Mitt Romney got 29 percent of Latino voters. Trump`s now at 17, he`s doing barely better than that in Arizona. And you start to look at the math and say it`s like Arizona. And if you`re the Clinton campaign, you say let`s go for it.

And I think it`s really crucial I mean the combination of the opportunity in Arizona and Trump`s hemorrhaging Latino and women votes means that they`re going to take a shot at it.

O`DONNELL: Jim, how much would you let Donald Trump talking about the rigged election get in your head in the War Room? Would you say, we`re going to have to answer that with as bigger victory as we can get or would you say I`m sticking to my game?

MESSINA: Look, I think, you know, what Trump is saying is just another silly thing that you can`t worry about it. In the war room, Lawrence as you know better than any anyone, you stay focused on your plan. You don`t let people pull you off your plan. And that is why expanding the map makes total sense.

The rigged thing, you know, the only thing that is rigged here is Donald Trump. And he has no chance to get to an electoral math victory right now. And so what he`s trying to do is just change the debate and talk about anything other than his failing candidacy. The guy doesn`t know how to admit defeat.

But on November 8th, he`s going to get a whole bunch of it.

O`DONNELL: Jim, we`re going to take a quick break here. I got one more thing for you which I think is really important and it`s what we`ve learned about early voting and what you might have learned the hard way last time around about early voting. Why not all early votes are equal? We get this a lot that we`ve learned about this especially in the example in North Carolina. I want to come back and go through that quickly. We`ll going to be right back with Jim Messina.


O`DONNELL: Campaigns are learning a lot about early voting, and it seems that maybe the Obama campaign had to learn it the hard way. President Obama won North Carolina in 2008 and then lost it in 2012. And one of the reasons he lost North Carolina to Mitt Romney is that the Republicans seem to have done a much more sophisticated job of turning out early voters.

While the Obama campaign was working the phones and urging anyone to vote early, the Republicans targeted their early voting campaign at people who were actually not likely to vote, not likely to vote on election day. They basically turned potential non-voters into Romney Voters, while the democrats were simply switching the time when their voters were going to vote from Election Day to some earlier day.

They were simply redistributing the timing of those early votes. Here`s how Mitt Romney`s North Carolina state director explained it. He said, by simply turning out voters earlier, who are going to vote on Election Day no matter what you are only playing a shell game for positive media stories. Instead, we have to turn out people who not vote on Election Day.

Back with us Jim Messina who was running that Obama campaign in 2012, Jim, what do you make of that? Early voting turns out to be a trickier thing for campaigns to manage than we thought.

MESSINA: Well look I think it`s a trickier thing for Democrats, right? We have voters who are only less propensity to vote. We have younger voters who voted a smaller percentage than national average. Some minority groups like Latinos don`t vote at a higher average. And so democrats do have to focus on our base more than Republicans do and that`s just part of our game.

O`DONNELL: When you look at the way early voting is being managed this year in the Clinton Campaign, are there lessons that were learned four years ago that will make that a more sophisticated system this time?

MESSINA: Absolutely. Look, I think Robby Mook, who has my old job as campaign manager has internalized this to a T. When you look at the early vote numbers in Virginia, they`re partially why Trump pulled out of Virginia last week because he realized he couldn`t win. You look at North Carolina, the state you and I were just talking about and Hillary`s performing several points above where the Obama campaign was in 2012.

That really matters in the state where we only lost by 1.9 percent. You look at states like Florida, where the numbers look really good as well. And so, these are really important strategic decisions, and you`ve go got to go straight at it.

It is partially why Trump bleeding women voters is such a big opportunity for the Clinton campaign. Because women voters are people that like to vote early, they are targetable and the Clinton campaign has gone straight after them and tried to get them to early vote, early in the selection and from the numbers I see and I look at these numbers everyday Lawrence. The Clinton campaign is doing a stellar job here.

O`DONNELL: And have we -- what about that Republican technique of trying to turn non-voters into early voters? Is there a way that, is there something that Democrats can learn from that?

MESSINA: Well, look, I think in every election cycle you learn something from the last one. I think what is true is Donald Trump has said repeatedly to you and everybody else, he doesn`t believe in big data. He doesn`t believe in targeting he just believes in his twitter feed apparently and mostly in the middle of the night. The Clinton campaign has invested millions and millions of dollars in data and a ground operation that allows you to do both things. It allows you turn your vote out and allows you to target swing voters and make sure that they support you and they vote early.

And I think that`s exactly what the Clinton campaign has done. You know, you know this, Lawrence. On the ground, in these states where you and I both are, there is no Trump campaign on the ground.


MESSINA: And to actually turn voters out, especially swing voters early, you have to have a campaign, you have to have a real ground operation, and that`s just not there for the Trump campaign.

O`DONNELL: Jim Messina, the mastermind of the last Obama War Room. Thanks very much for joining us tonight Jim, really appreciate it.

MESSINA: My pleasure Lawrence.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, you know when Donald Trump hates what he`s watching on T.V. because he always tweets what he`s watching on T.V. which means he probably, I don`t now, missed Family Guy last night.

We`re going to give Donald Trump another chance to see Family Guy on the Trump bus. That is next.


O`DONNELL: In last night`s episode Family Guy got on the bus with Donald Trump.


PETER GRIFFIN, FAMILY GUY: Hey, thanks for letting me ride on the bus with you. You want to have locker room talk?

D. TRUMP: I moved on her, actually.

GRIFFIN: Whoa, whoa, whoa that`s not locker room talk. I meant like good play, good pass, like that kind of thing. D. TRUMP: I moved on her and I failed. I`ll admit it.

GRIFFIN: Well as long as you didn`t try to [ bleep ] her and she was single.

D. TRUMP: I did try and [ bleep ] and she was married.

GRIFFIN: Whoa, you`re awesome. Hey have you ever thought of being President?

D. TRUMP: And I moved on her very heavily. In fact I took her out furniture shopping.

GRIFFIN: Aw, sweet move. Was it Levitz?

D. TRUMP: She wanted to get some furniture. I said I`ll show you where they got some nice furniture.

GRIFFIN: Levitz.

D. TRUMP: But I couldn`t get there and she was married. And all of a sudden I see her she`s now got the big phony [ bleep ] and everything. She`s totally changed her look.

GRIFFIN: Well it is 2005, everything`s changing, which reminds me, I have this idea for twitter, where crazy people can bash ladies and minorities at 3:00 a.m.

WILLIAM HALL BUSH, AMERICAN RADIO AND TELEVISION HOST: Sheesh, your girls hot as shit in the purple.

GRIFFIN: Oh also Uber, i invented this if you`re listening to this in the future.

D. TRUMP: I better use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her.

GRIFFIN: That`s the cheapest breath mint. I thought you were a billionaire.

D. TRUMP: You know I`m automatically attracted to beautiful -- I just start kissing them. It`s like a magnet, just kiss and I don`t even wait. And when you`re star, they let do you it. You can do anything.

BUSH: Whatever you want.

GRIFFIN: What? Like grab them by the hand?

D. TRUMP: Grab them by the [ bleep ].

GRIFFIN: Oh, my.

D. TRUMP: You can do anything.

BUSH: Down below, pull the handle.

GRIFFIN: He can`t open it, because he has tiny hands.


O`DONNELL: Tiny hands, the Obama Administration believes WikiLeaks is now the favorite tool of Vladimir Putin`s hackers who have now stolen e-mails from the Clinton campaign. How does WikiLeaks do it? That`s next.


O`DONNELL: How does WikiLeaks do it? How do they get the information they get? And how do they make it public. That has changed significantly since WikiLeaks began in 2006.

WikiLeaks latest release of stolen material includes a large trove of e- mail from john Podesta, Chair of Hillary Clintons Presidential Campaign. Earlier this month Homeland Security and National Intelligence said that they are confident that the Russian government directed the recent compromises of e-mails. Those e-mails reveal some of what Hillary Clinton had to say on her paid speeches to Goldman Sachs as well as some strategic decisions made by the Clinton Campaign.

For example one of the stolen e-mails apparently shows Clinton Campaign Manager Robby Mook changing his mind on whether the Clinton Campaign should accept donations from lobbyist who represent foreign countries. After multiple e-mails over four days from senior staff members making different points Robby Mook wrote so in a complete U-turn I`m OK just taking the money and dealing with any attacks.

We invited Robby Mook to join us tonight. We told the campaign that we wanted to ask him what changed his mind about taking those contributions. Robby Mook declined to appear. Joining us now someone who high school studied the history and process of WikiLeaks, Josh Singer who wrote the film the Fifth Estate about WikiLeaks and it`s founder Julian Assange played by Benedict Cumberbatch.

Josh Singer is also the Oscar Winning co-writer of this years Oscar Winning best picture Spotlight. Josh you learned -- you studied WikiLeaks from the ground up. And apparently they have technical abilities and systems in the early years that they don`t have now. Is WikiLeaks just Julian Assange alone in a room now? What is there?

JOSH SINGER, HOLLYWOOD PRODUCER AND WRITER: Well, you know, Lawrence WikiLeaks started as a whistle blowing organization. I mean their whole drive was to present -- was to have a submission platform where whistle blowers could anonymously give information that will exposed corruption.

You know they did some great work early on. They exposed corruption in the Julius Baer Bank. They exposed corruption in the Julius Baer Bank. You know people who are not paying their taxes. I mean --

O`DONNELL: Donald Trump`s.

SINGER: Exactly. That`s the kind of person that they would have gone after back in the day. You know there was a big mutiny at WikiLeaks right around the time of the America Data Dumps when they released the Iraq War Logs, when they released, you know, U.S. Diplomatic Cables where I think certain people in the organizations suddenly didn`t feel that this was what they should be doing. This was not their mission.

O`DONNELL: Because they wanted to filter that release more carefully?

SINGER: They wanted to filter that release more carefully and also there was the bigger question of what are we doing? Is this really whistle blowing after all, you know, you could maybe argue that Private Manning has knowledge of this stuff going on in Iraq. And so the Iraq War Logs is a whistle blowing release. But the diplomatic cables, what did she have real knowledge of when it came to that.

And so, you know, just sending out big troves of data without really filtering it how is that whistle blowing. And now they`ve -- and so what happened at that point which is very interesting is that key members of Assange`s team basically destroyed his submission platform. And so they don`t really have a proprietary system for protecting whistle blowers anymore which is why whistle blowers generally don`t go there.

So how does Assange get his information now? Well I suppose he gets it from people who hack information and don`t care if, you know, you find out where he got his information perhaps like the Russian government.

O`DONNELL: What -- your reaction to our governments assertions based on their information that they believe that this is basically the Russian government hackers obtain this stuff, hand it to WikiLeaks?

SINGER: I mean again I`m just --

O`DONNELL: And just to say hand it to Julian Assange, right?

SINGER: And if you look at the leaks that WikiLeaks has put out, you know, they had a ton of leaks in 2006, `07, `08, `09, `10 and suddenly they were quiet. They were quiet because they don`t have a submission platform anymore. And now suddenly in the last in the year or two they`ve had all these leaks about the NSA and about the Democratic Party. And where do we think those are coming from, you know?

The other thing that I think bothers me a bit is, you know, WikiLeaks own it`s on website says that what it`s trying to do is putting -- put out political or historically important documents that are either censored or suppressed. I don`t know how John Podesta`s e-mails fits into that description. Frankly I`m not entire sure how the DNC e-mails fit into that description. It seems like they are very far away from the mission they started out at.

O`DONNELL: Yes, Josh Singer also former writer for that T.V. show called the West Wing. Is that what they call it?


O`DONNELL: Thank you very much for joining us. Josh, really appreciate it. We`ll be right back.



JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We had a capacity to do it. And the message sent--


BIDEN: He`ll know it. It will at the time of our choosing and under the circumstances that have the greatest impact --

TODD: So a message is going to be sent. Will the public know?

BIDEN: I hope not.


O`DONNELL: That was Joe Biden on yesterday`s "MEET THE PRESS". And imagine for a moment Donald Trump in that kind of interview situation trying to being revealing of some things but circumspect and careful, hard to imagine. MSNBC`s live coverage continues into "THE 11TH HOUR" now with Brian Williams.