tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC July 18, 2013 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
watching us too. >> sybrina fulton, tracy martin, attorney benjamin crump, thank you for your time tonight. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. >> thanks for watching. i'm al sharpton. trayvon martin's parents speak tonight, and this is "hardball." >> good evening. i'm kris matthews out in san francisco. let me start tonight with the obvious. we just saw reverend al sharpton's interview with the parents, the mother and father of trayvon martin. in a moment, we're going to hear from my colleague himself on what he heard and what he felt from the hour with those grieving parents. he is with us now, the reverend al sharpton. reverend sharpton, i want to congratulate you on something
historic, a role you played in this whole matter. and i think it gets to something the father tracy said tonight, about his feelings in those early weeks after the killing, when it appeared that nothing was going to be done, that his son was going to die, left there cold, buried without any action by the government. that there was no sense of public responsibility for this tragedy i salute you for getting that into court. reverend, tell what you thought about his reaction to what he said along those lines tonight. >> i mean, i was very moved, because i felt that the real job of those of us that are advocates, whether we use journalism or whatever, is to try to put light in dark situations. when i first was called about this case, i hasn't really heard much about it. and all we wanted was to help get it into court. we did. i never went to the trial. i never even went to florida while the trial was going on. it was about letting the system go forward. and we always said we wanted the
federal government to come in and we wanted them to look at the laws. even the juror that was interviewed said the laws must be changed. so we've tried to keep this in a positive light, knowing there are going to be people that castigate us. but tonight i wanted them as parents to be able to talk from their heart in an unrushed manner about this is their son. this is not a political issue to them. this is not posturing to them. this is their son. and guess what? there are millions around the country that have to deal with their child. if we can get those in power to understand this is not about republican and democrat. it's about how we protect our kids equally, then i think we can make something -- make this a learning moment and a teaching moment that will help the country. >> well, along those lines, let's listen now to tracy martin, what he said to you, reverend sharpton, about how heartbroken he was with the feeling that his son's life hadn't been taken seriously when he lost it. let's listen. >> i just felt that as a father,
who had lost his child, i felt that his life had been a made a mockery of. so i couldn't just stand in front of the tv and watch them parade so to speak on unreasonable television. >> why do you feel that trayvon's life was made a mockery of? >> i just didn't feel as though they the jurors. >> not all of the sanford police, but some of the sanford police department didn't take this serious at all. and i just, as i said, i just didn't feel that his life value meant anything to them. >> you said it well, i think, reverend sharpton, and we keep forgetting it. this isn't some thing we're watching. if you're the parent, it's your kid who is never coming back in a million years. he is never coming back to earth the way he was. and you have to deal with that.
it's bigger than anything about the case. it's particular. the big giant reality of lost trayvon. what do you think? what do you feel, actually, about what happened in the trial where there is this almost zero sum thing gets created. if it's self-defense, then the victim must have done something. you see the situation. you know. you could be a $10,000 million lawyer right now. the situation the way it developed, it put the defense attorney -- i don't dislike mark omar rachlt he had to go in there and make a case that his defendant defendant was threatened with his life. which is a horrible thing to do, and i think the mother felt it obviously. we'll get to what she said in a moment. >> i think the defense attorney had to do his job, and his job was to put up a defense. i think the prosecutors in some cases were lacking. i think the family's attorney
ben crump and parks did their jobs aggressively. but at the end of it all, we're left with a country now that is torn, but we must establish laws that can reconcile the tear. and that's where going forward is. how do you bring people together and even if the jury is saying we can't just have laws that people presume things and move forward. and i really think these parents deserve a lot of credit by not being bitter and by not being selfish. i don't know how many people could do that. >> i agree. >> and say well, let's try to heal and correct society in my son's name. >> the mom, sybrina fulton right now, she was very upset and felt betrayed in the fact that her dead son is now used as sort of a target in order to gone rate someone, to get him acquitted. let's listen. >> it just it seems to me as though trayvon was on trial. and this trial was not about trayvon. this trial was about george zimmerman and what he did that night. but it just constantly seemed to
me like they were trying to bring things up that trayvon had done. i moon, who hasn't done things as a 17-year-old, you know? i think they put more responsibility on the trial, trayvon, and not the adult, george zimmerman. so the comments they made was based on that. the comments were to me some of the comments were just distasteful, you know. you can tell me you're sorry for my loss and then stabbing me in the back at the same time. what it's not like, what it's like to have an attitude about what the police are going to be like. what some government neighborhood watch person. you don't even know who they are. some grownup comes at you and how you would react. there any way you can teach that to a white jury? >> i don't -- and tried to talk to them about that disconnect. and i don't know that the
members of that jury understand what it is. for this woman to raise two black sons, and always have the hope that they don't succumb to civilian or some policeman off of some crime and then they become demonized when they're the victim. at the end of the day the thing that i think brought it home and really made what she said tonight was so powerful, because i said to her, did she watch the defense attorneys. no one would admit at the end of the day at best george zimmerman was wrong to feel that trayvon martin was doing anything. to always be guilty until proven innocent on sight is the kind of america we've got to stop. that's what the whole fight is about. why are young blacks guilty until proven innocent? assume that you're doing something wrong, and even when you find out there was nothing
wrong, i'm going to demonize you anyway to justify what i did. and your mother and father is going to have to sit there and watch me take you apart. >> we're going to talk than a lot with one of our colleagues here, val nicholas at nbc. he is coming on after this in the next segment. and also michael steele who has had his own experiences as a middle class person with this kind of police behavior. let's take a look to tracy martin, what the dad said. he didn't think the jurors could see what happened through the eyes of a young african-american parent or a child, in this case the teenager. let's listen. >> i don't think they could connect with him in the sense that they're not looking through the eyes of an african-american parent. they don't know what it's like to be an african-american. they don't know the -- all of the trials and tribulations. so i think the disconnect was maybe they have kids, and they never figured that their kids would ever have to be put in
that position, where as we on the other hand, we understand that society is cruel. and i just don't think that they saw it coming from our perspective. >> let's go through it all now and put it all together and take all your time, reverend. they weren't tough on the prosecution. they seemed to give some applaud dids to the governor, who i don't give much plaudit. he may have done this for political reasons. he got the u.s. attorney involved. they didn't seem to hold it against what i thought, and i think you did too a somewhat less than stellar prosecution. they hold it against the effective defense team because obviously they won out. and they wonder, i guess they're careful about the jury. but what do you think their general verdict of their own family feeling is of all the players in this tragedy, especially in the courtroom. >> since i became involved with talking with them 16, 17 months ago, they've been very, very positive people. i mean, amazingly so.
and they have shown no bitterness. they've always said it's bigger than us. it's bigger than trayvon. i remember that we were at a church once, and somebody had said we're putting out a reward for george zimmerman. she said oh, no, let's go out there and hold a press conference right now and denounce that we will not be part of the harm. we must be part of the healing. which amazes me how strong they are and how spiritually connected they are. i have my views on the prosecution. i have my views on rick scott. but that's politics. to them, they want to have a lasting memory that their son helped change the country. that's what i heard the father say tonight. and i just wanted america to hear forget about the lawyers, forget about the advocates like me. listen to them. they're the ones that are trying to protect the legacy of trayvon martin since they couldn't protect his life. >> you know, in a much different and less grievous case, i'm sure you were taken with the movie
"42". >> yes. >> and the greatness of jackie robinson wasn't just that he was gifted athlete and he perform and he was a ucla student and everything else, he was great, but that he took the crap from the phillies dugout, which embarrasses me as a phillies fan. in fact, was a legacy in philadelphia growing up all these years. i knew about the african-american anger at the phillies at the way they treated robinson and refused to integrate the team. i remember that history. but it was about the player himself, jackie robinson and his beautiful wife who were able to establish permanent greatness because of their manner, the way they took almost like jesus, the manner in which they took the spitting. in this case, these noble parents seem to be showing that on your show tonight. >> i think you're right. i think that branch rickey and 42 was not looking for just the best athlete, but the best temperament. and i think history will say the reason trayvon martin's movement
and trayvon martin will i think lead to some real change for the better for all of the people in this country is because of the temperament and the maturity of his family who were able to take it a lot better than all of us and keep their eye on the prize. driven, and in many ways passionate, but also disciplined and focused. and that's unusual when you are grieving and in pain at the same time. >> well, congratulations to you, sir. as i said before at the beginning of this conversation, i think you deserve a lot of credit for bringing this trial to justice, to trial at least. we'll see about the justice in the long-term. but i think you've got it to a trial which it deserved. and i think everybody agrees with that except for mark o'mara who said there wouldn't be a trial if it was an african-american defendant. we'll see about that. thank you, reverend al sharpton for coming on our show. coming up, the african-american nbc vice president who says i would have been trayvon martin. wait until you catch this next segment. plus, he twice in his life has found himself looking down
the barrel of a police gun. guilty, it appears, of simply being a black teenager. also, the missing man in the debate over obama care emerges finally himself, president obama. not only does he have a strong case to make, now he's got evidence it is cutting prices for insurance across the country. and watch darrell issa pretend he is not accusing the white house and guess who of causing the irs to target tea party groups, just as he accuses washington, as he calls it, of using the irs to target tea party groups. and what got a committee to make this fake ad campaign against texas governor rick "oops" perry. >> don't mess with texas. no don't [ bleep ] with new york. >> we blanked that out, of course. that's sideshow and this is "hardball," the place for politics. probably the car. cause as you get older you start breaking down. i love my car. i want to take care of it. i have a bad wheel - i must say.
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welcome back to "hardball." the george zimmerman verdict and the tragedy surrounding trayvon martin has brought back memories for many african-american men who see themselves as trayvon martin. their stories and their experiences are all too familiar and all too moving, especially to those of us who don't know anything about it. as vice president here at nbc news, nicholas broke his silence today in an op-ed for msnbc.com about what he calls, quote, the long suppressed memories that last week's verdict ignited, and
realized that he could have been trayvon martin and didn't even know it. he says, quote, twice as a teen i ended up looking down the barrel of police guns for no other reason than i happened to be a black teenager. i had completely forgotten about those incidents, but the zimmerman verdict opened that door again. well, val nicholas strongly believes that race plays a role in decisions people make every day. and he has his own experiences to prove it and show it. growing up as a successful professional african-american man. as the zimmerman verdict sparks a nationwide conversation on race, could something positive perhaps come from this verdict for all of us, regardless of race? joining me right now to discuss this is nbc news vice president val nicholas. also with us is msnbc political analyst michael steele. val, you don't usually do television, but you make it possible by being one of the executives here at nbc news. tell us, especially white people watching who don't know the world as you know it, as fully as you know it, what happened to you as a teenager and more subsequently? >> interesting.
when i was younger, and i was an a student, i was a student athlete, and i never lived in a hood. you know, i don't even know what one's like. i've never been there but twice i ended up look do you think the barrels of guns, which was completely unexpected. one time i was waiting for a bus at a bus stop, waiting to go to my after school job, and suddenly two chp, california highway patrol cars jumped over the middle island, and both of them screamed up on either side of me. guys jumped out with guns, screaming for me to get my hands up and lay down on the ground. and eventually they threw me down to the ground. and they asked me if i was some person. and i said no, i'm not. they asked me for id, which fortunately i had a work id that had a picture on it. otherwise i probably would have gone to jail. and they realized i wasn't the guy. so they decided, okay, and they jumped in their car and took off. they never hey, sorry about that.
they never said hey, are you okay? nothing. they just took off. the second time i was at a convenience store, and unfortunately, at that time i had just cash mid work check. so i had it in my jacket pocket. and suddenly, somebody came up behind me and said don't move a muscle. and i thought okay. and i glanced back, and i saw the barrel of a shotgun at the back of my head. it turned out what it was the guy, the clerk had accidentally stepped on the switch that calls the police when there is a robbery. and so they had responded. and what i was thinking the whole time is oh my god, this is the only money i have. maybe i should try to sneak it out and stick it into the snack thing. and if i would have done that, i would have been done instantly, because i turned around and it was a police officer. what really got me at the time was there were a lot of other customers in the store, but i was the only one with the gun on me.
>> let me go to michael steele. what is your reaction to hearing that story? >> you know, it is a story of a lot of young african-american males. whether they're from the hood or from, you know, or not. it doesn't matter. >> exactly. >> what val, myself, and so many others have in common is black skin. and a lot of the perceptions that go along with that. and as i tell my young boys, my two sons were in their early 20s, particularly when they got their driver's licenses, chris, said look, if you ever get pulled over by a cop, and you likely will, roll down all four windows, turn on the dome light, put your hands on the steering wheel and don't move and just answer yes, sir, no, sir. that mind-set is something that is passed on. it has to be, because as val just very pointedly said, if he had done what anybody else could have done, it likely would have led to his arrest or his being killed. and so there is this dynamic at play here that has now come to the surface as a result of the
trayvon martin case that causes an introspection among a lot of african-american men, particularly those who are talking to their sons right now as they are about to go out into the world about what it means to be a black man in america. >> let me ask about a practical thing, val. you and i talk once in a while about everything except. this i want to ask you about speed limits. you drive the jersey turnpike. you drive the garden state, 95. you know, you see a black guy stopped. i always wonder, i see it all the time. is that guy speeding? is he two miles over the speed limit rather than five? most of us drive about five miles over the speed limit. that's what we do. we assume there is a grace period there. do you think cops grab african-americans when they're within the five-mile grace period that other people seem to operate by? i've been in traffic when everybody is going 80. >> i'll give you a story, chris. when i was a young producer at a local television station in california, i finally earned enough money to get a decent car besides that piece of junk i
had. so i bought a nice bmw. and what i found was during the week when i was dressed like this, not a problem. but on the weekend when i was wearing a t-shirt and a ball cap, police cars would do what i call the five-block follow. they would side isle up behind me and they would follow me for five blocks while they're running my plates, and then they would veer off. and at first i didn't november noti notice it. but every weekend. >> they were tailing you for a while. >> to run my plates. >> common history here? did you have that experience? >> oh, my gosh, yes. i was in a suit. i didn't have the running suit or the t-shirt. i was in a suit coming home, cutting through rock creek park. and this parked police kind of pulled up behind me. and it was at dusk. it was getting dark. and he followed me all the way out of the park, all the way out of the park. and so -- and i'm sitting there thinking, okay, am i going too fast, am i going too slow, what
is it? i almost wanted to pull over and say why are you following? i knew that would open up a can of worms that didn't need to open. i kept the speed limit and drove by the park. >> how do you moderate yourself? when you go a store, and i heard cases where people follow you if you're african-american. they claim like they're being attentive, but they're being atentative in kind of a nasty way. >> exactly. my father not unlike michael, when i was young taught me. he said if you end up in a situation with the police or security or whatever, never argue. just capitulate because he said there is only three results that can happen from that. one, you go to jail, two, you go to the hospital, three you go to the morgue. and he told me that when i was like nine or ten years old. >> we have to continue this conversation, gentlemen, privately and on television. a lot of people out there. i'll just tell you one thing. i'm speaking now for all white people, especially we tried to change the past 50 or 60 years.
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there's doughnuts in the conference room. automatic discounts the moment you sign up. back to "hardball." now to the sideshow. oops. governor rick perry has launched a million dollar ad campaign to lure businesses from new york to his home state of texas. and as you might imagine, native new yorkers resent his meddling. but no one is more indignant than comedian lewis black who issued a searing rebuttal in an advertisement of his own on "the daily show" last night. >> this is new york, the city that never sleeps. people come here from all over the world for the freedom to live as they choose, for the variety of cultures.
but most of all, for the fact that it's not texas. you say everything is bigger in texas? we have a 300 foot beacon of liberty, and you have a whatever the [ bleep ] this thing is. you say we've got too much regulation? we've got wall street. they break the law for a living and never get punished. new yorkers go to the bathroom anywhere they want. we love the smell of urine. it smells like freedom. they all come from different places, but we all agree on one thing. >> no, no, no texas. >> rick perry, you are a schmuck. >> remember the alamo? neither do we. >> don't mess with texas? no! don't [ bleep ] with new york. >> talk about throwing down the gauntlet. next, a group that calls itself hack marriage is redefining marriage, literally.
it seems after the ruling against doma, defense of marriage act last month, a group of activists is taking matters into their own hands, updating the entry for marriage in dictionaries in various bookstores across san francisco. and to boot, these rogue pranksters are filming themselves in the act. the video you're just watching shows the retrofitting the books at barnes & noble, target, even at the famous left-seening city lights bookstore where i spent this afternoon. so is this marriage mischief an act of vandalism or just a prank? weigh in on our facebook page. it will be interesting to see what you think. and finally, an historic landmark. netflix's house of cards which i love has been nominated for nine emmys including top categories best drama and best lead actor and actress. it's the first time a digitally distributed show has made the cut. and it marks a turning point in the history of tv. kevin spacey plays the machiavellian congressman frank
underwood. you could even say he co-starred alongside bill clinton. here is their bit from the correspondents dinner. >> i want to thank the academy for this tremendous honor. this may be the greatest moment of my life. i mean, ever since i was a little boy i wanted to be a real actor. >> come on, who is the better actor? anyway, up next, selling obama care. it's about time. it's lowered costs in 11 states so far. so why did it take until today for the president to get out there in this fight? he did well today. i hope he catches up to the millions of dollars being spent to attack an historic program for health care. this is the place for politics. i like a clean kitchen.
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hey there. i'm veronica de la cruz. south africa wraps a day of celebration for nelson mandela's 95th birthday. his daughter says he is making remarkable progress and could be discharged from the hospital soon. the white house says president obama and his team are closely monitoring detroit after the city became the largest in u.s. history to file for bankruptcy today. and the dow jumped 78 points to smash its own record. a new high for the s&p too, which gained 8. the nasdaq inched up 1. i'm veronica de la cruz. now back to "hardball." we're back. think about this. if republicans were really convinced that obama care is going to be as unpopular as they say it will be, would they be trying so desperately to scuttle it now?
wouldn't they let the law go into effect and then watch it implode and chirp told you so. instead you have the gop today actively rooting for it to go badly at the outset. you had them making purely symbolic efforts in fact to repeal or change the law. for example, yesterday marked the 38th and 39th attempt by the how many times to repeal the measure. maybe what they're really afraid of is the law will succeed and become popular. as paul krugman wrote this week, quote, conservatives are right to be hysterical about this. it's an attack on everything they believe and it's going to make americans live better. what could be worse -- for them, that. the reality is in order for the law to work, the american public, and especially young people need to buy into it literally. and today president obama made a strong pro push, hitting back at republican efforts at obstruction. here he is. >> yesterday, despite all the evidence that the law is working the way it was supposed to for middle class americans, republicans in the how many times voted for nearly the 40th
time to dismantle it. sometimes i just try to figure out why. maybe they think it's good politics, but part of our job here is to not always think about politics. part of our job is sometimes to think about getting work done on behalf of the american people, on behalf of the middle class and those who are striving to get into the middle class. [ applause ] >> well, the white house says it has a strong message and they see people already reaping some benefits from the law as in new york state, where costs are set to fall by an average of 50% next year. that's premiums. can they get that message out, though? sam stein is political editor for "the huffington post" and nia-malika henderson. i can think of three great reasons why the republicans are doing what they're doing. one, they might be able to discourage young people in participating in the program,
meaning only unhealthy people participate, which is bad economics. two, they could create an unhealthy atmosphere and next year lose a lot of votes. and third, i'm not sure. just make life miserable in america. i'm sure i can think of a third reason. sam, it is smart politics on the republican side to just trash this thing again and again and again with hopes they'll be proven right, i guess. >> chris, you just had your rick perry moment where you couldn't remember the third thing on the list. >> don't ever do that again, sam. >> fair enough. >> go ahead. >> i think you're right about this. i think part of what the republican calculation here is that you have to kill the law now or you won't be able to do it later, in part because some of the benefits are going to start to accrue starting in this year and going into 2014. if these exchanges do get off the ground, it will prove their thesis wrong. so this is sort of the last gasp to make sure that the law doesn't work. and if that's what they do want, that means they have to go on right now. you're seeing it in some of the information campaigns they're launching. for instance, convincing the nfl
not to participate in a public relations campaign that people knew the exchange exist. they want it repealed now because they're worried about the possibility that it will become so entrenched in the public consciousness that they won't be able to repeal it later. >> the third reason is they want people to think in terms of bad ways how difficult it will be to deal with. so it will be. it gets into your head. let me get to one point i think they're fearful of, the real reason, the real number three on my list, they're afraid it's going to be popular. and they're afraid the same thing will happen with health care that happened with social security when everybody came to love it. nobody turns it down. and with medicare, nobody, even the most conservative republican turns it down. they grow to love it in their retirement years. and i think they're afraid this is going to catch on with working middle class people who say i needed it, i got it, and i'm happy. nia? >> that's right. and that certainly could ham. come 2014, they're particularly looking at young males, working
class males who need to sign up for this thing to make it work. and republicans are betting, they spent a lot of money on this. they won campaigning over it, let's face it. that's why they were able to win the house in 2010. so if they bad-mouth it enough, then it won't be popular. but also, they've got some leverage here. if you look at some of these states like mississippi, louisiana, states like that, where there isn't going to be an expansion of medicaid, it is going to be difficult for the very poor to actually get insurance. so there are some glitches. >> what are states like that? when you say states like louisiana and mississippi, whoa what do umean states like that? >> they're states with republican governors. a lot of these southern states. a lot of these are states that have millions of people. >> you mean backwater states that don't like any kind of federal role? >> i'm from a backwater state from south carolina. so i don't really like to refer to them as that. but i don't think nikki haley is one of these governors who is going to expand medicaid. you're going to have a lot of people in my home state of south carolina who aren't going to be
able to take advantage of this new law. >> here is the president here. by the way, i'm glad this guy isn't selling cars because he wouldn't get many off the lot. he is good at maybing this stuff, but selling it, he doesn't spend much time on it. here he is finally making a sell on health care. and efforts by republicans to sabotage it. here he is today in the east room. let's watch. >> i recognize that there is still a lot of folks in this town at least who are rooting for this law to fail. some of them seem to think this law is about me. it's not. i already have really good health care. it's about the dad in maryland who for the first time ever saw his family's premiums go down instead of up. it's about the grandma in oregon whose free mammogram caught her breast cancer before it had a chance to spread. it's about the mom in arizona who can afford heart surgery for her little girl now that the
lifetime cap on her coverage has been lifted. >> sam, i think i have a reason why the president hasn't been so great at this. he is obviously an inspirational speaker. i've said that a million times. it's this. the real beneficiaries of this system of obama care are going to be those tens of millions of people who now rely primarily on the er. they don't have any health care when they get hurt, whether it's something serious or something not so serious. they race over and spend hours waiting in that room. then they finally get treated pretty well. but that's the way they rely on it. he doesn't want to talk with those people, because politically they may not be a strong voting gunship. he wants to talk about the people a little better off than that, not desperate, but struggling. people who can't afford maybe the procedure they needed for their mother, or it costs too much in terms of having a full-strength health care program. tell me why. explain what i'm getting at, because i know i'm getting at something. the target zone of this group is not a great voting bloc, where as the big voting block is better off. >> a lot of the health care
debate takes place in the abstract. for instance, anyone who is healthy doesn't think they're going to get sick. they don't think about the medical costs they're going to incur when they do have to go to the hospital. so when you sell them a bag of goods, it's very hard to make that sale. the second reason the president and the white house underestimated the difficulty of this is when they looked at the bill, they said wow, we're giving away free money essentially to all these states. we will match your medicaid. we'll pay for medicaid and pay 90% of it. that's free money. how could anyone possibly turn that down? well, in fact a lot of the governors did turn it down. and even the governors that did accept it are facing tough times in their state legislatures because the republicans there want to make a name for themselves and say we're not going to have this. thing are two miscalculations. one that it would be easy to sell when people think about health care in the abstract. and two, thou they thought the money would be so alluring to republicans that eventually they would drop their opposition, which has not proven to be the case. >> he has always underestimated the hostility to him as a person. >> that's right. and i think in some ways he has
overestimated the power of the bull by live pulpit. he has made dozens and dozens and dozens of speeches on health care. if you look at the numbers going back to 2010, the poll numbers have not budged on this. you have a little bit more of the public doesn't like health care for various reasons than actually do. so i don't know if a speech like this actually is going to move the needle. i think the rubber meets the road come in 2014 when young people decide whether or not they're going to sign up for this thing. >> chris, the needle gets moved in this law by word of mouth. it's why people start going to the exchanges, say look, i've got this great coverage here. it's cheap. start telling the friends that's when the popularity comes through. >> saturday radio on this every week for weeks to use that ways to keep educating people. it's going to take a while, sam, and malik california. sam stein and nia malik is a henderson. darryl ice sack, they want to pretend he is not accusing the white house or that democrats are using the irs to target tea party people. he did it again. the implication is again and
again obama did it, obama did it, and he didn't. this is "hardball," the place for politics. which is why he's investing in his heart health by eating kellogg's raisin bran®. good morning dad. hi, sweetie. [ male announcer ] here's another eye opener. not only is kellogg's raisin bran® heart healthy it's a delicious source of potassium. ♪ mom make you eat that? i happen to like raisins. now that's what i'm talkin' about. [ male announcer ] invest in your heart health with kellogg's raisin bran®.
be sure to catch our special final edition of the chris matthews show this weekend. join me and 17 great journalists as we address the big question about race in america's future. and also celebrate 11 great years on the air. i'll have some last thoughts as we close out a great run. and we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] the wind's constant force
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[ male announcer ] when your favorite food starts a fight, fight back fast with tums. trusted heartburn relief that goes to work in seconds. nothing works faster. ♪ tum, tum tum tum tums! i certainly want to make sure that the smear stops here today. i want to caution the ladies and gentlemen on both sides of the aisle here we will work with what we know, and we will work to find out what we do not know. and i for one, and i hope everyone on both sides of the dais will reject categorically assumptions for which there is not evidence. when i say something goes to the office of the consul of the irs, that is not to be construed as the office of the president or
to the consul himself. it is important we understand that words matter, nuances matter, and that we not go one step beyond what we know. >> that's rather unctous, isn't it? welcome back to "hardball" that is darrell issa of california with some curious words of today's irs hearing. issa has been the gop architect of the narrative that the white house ordered the targeting of conservative groups which some republican colleagues have used to make the more outrageous claim that the white house sent the irs a nixonian list. if you saw the op-ped in "usa today" asks the question "was the targeting of the tea party applicants directed by the white house?" representative gerry connolly, a democrat from virginia. >> it's a terrible thing when the narrative we've got in our heads just doesn't quite work because the facts don't back them up. >> would the gentleman yield? >> i will in a second, mr. chairman. but i -- in fact, before i
yield, i'd read back a quote from the chairman on national television, because he just assured us that he never linked the president to this, and i read this quote. "this was the targeting of the president's political enemies. effectively. and lies about it during the election year so that it wasn't discovered until afterwards. now, that's the narrative. and there's no evidence including from those two witnesses today that that's true. >> well, the facts of the case so far have not stopped issa. he announced he is expanding the irs investigation. t it was part of the group that reviewed complex issues involved in tea party applications. we're joined by elijah cummings. i keep thinking of the phrase, bang your way out of a paper bag. how do you get out of this endless morass?
this chairman will not stop calling witnesses, will not ever say it's over. it seems like he's going to go on and on and on until people forgot there was a beginning or will ever be an end to this thing. >> well clearly, chris, he called two witnesses, irs witnesses today out of 16 that we've interviewed, and every witness, first panel and second panel, including i.g. george, said that there has been no white house involvement, there has been no political motivation involved in these decisions, and chairman issa, i had to admit, on the one hand that there was no political involvement, no white house involvement, and then but at the same time, he left the door open basically saying through the "usa today" article and some statements that he made during the hearing that he still blames the president. so, you know, it's sad. we have had 16 interviews so
far, chris, and every single interview people have said, no white house involvement, to political motivation. but yet and still, and by the way, those were republicans and democratic members of the irs. people who work for the irs. h he didn't call any republicans today. he called others, but not the republicans who even one republican out of washington irs employee,dy said, look, these allegations, it was a political enemies list of the president and we were targeting and all this. she said it's laughable. yet and still he wcontinues to march down that aisle and i think basically those are the talking points of the republican party. >> let's go back to the seat of this hurricane. that was the inspector general report. the inspector general report i understand in the testimony said he now realizes there were progressive groups targeted and hi never knew that when he issued his report. >> well, he knew that they were
on a be on a lookout. interesting thing, he claims tea party folks were treated differently but also admitted he never has investigated what happened to the progressive groups. and he also, chris, stood in the way of us getting certain information that irs wants to give us with regards to this investigation, but he has personally blocked that information from coming to us. and the first time in talking to the folks at irs, they said they don't even remember a time when an i.g. actually blocked them from providing information to congress. >> you know what i think is disturbing? you're a lone voice out there. you're a ranking member. it's your role to play. do you think there are a lot of members in the democratic congress afraid to get into defensive mode with regard to the iirs? because in nature it's an unpopular institution. >> i think members want to know
the truth. they are learning the truth. they are seeing that there's not one scintilla of evidence with regard to things being, you know, with the president and others. but i think they also know that there are problems within the irs, itself. the i.g. has already told us that. that's what we ought to be about, chris. trying to straighten out those problems. the president, by the way, is making giant steps toward doing that. >> thank you, elijah cummings from maryland. ranking member on committee. thank you. we'll be right back after this. 250,000 jobs here. through all of our energy operations, we invest more in the u.s. than any other place in the world. in fact, we've invested over $55 billion here in the last five years - making bp america's largest energy investor. our commitment has never been stronger.
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let me finish tonight with martin family. a lot of defense attorneys over the years have opposed giving rights to the families of the victims. i think that's wrong. i think it's vital when we speak about murder cases, including capital cases, where execution is a possible sentence that we consider the alleged criminal act, itself. we need to look at what happened. the full horror of it. and that includes the horror under the families of the person killed. there's nothing colder than to prevent the purpose of the law, the emotions of a jury, for example, should be swayed by the punishment facing the accused. the jury should see the horror inflicted on victim as seen in the wries of the family and those close to victim. i know this isn't a popular notion or hadn't been, at least, before this trial of george stimerman. perhaps now seeing the martins and hearing their grief, we have
a stronger sense when it comes especially to the sentencing the scales of justice must be weighed for the victim as well as the defendant. just a thought. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. good evening, from new york. i'm chris hayes. tonight, on "all in" there's a simple, humane and perfectly reasonable solution to the tragic case of a florida woman spending 20 years in jail for firing a warning shot at her allegedly abusive husband. governor rick scott pardoned marissa alexander. more on this in a moment. also tonight the fire storm over the cover of "rolling stone" is taking a new turn this evening. an outraged member of the massachusetts state police responds by releasing dramatic new photos of the night dzhokhar tsarnaev was taken into custody.