tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC October 15, 2015 10:00pm-11:01pm PDT
>> and while donald trump is dictating the terms of the next republican debate, he will get what he wants, because? for one, donald trump is right. >> so we're in first place. everywhere. >> i'm amazed at how he has not re resonated. >> i'm not going to scream at people. >> trump is far ahead of the field. >> ben carson is his immediate threat, i don't think he has found that weak spot in carson
or he would go after it. >> he is making outrageous comments every day, stop stealing my campaign strategy! >> it would be way funnier if trump won. >> it would be far better for the health of the country if bernie sanders is the next president. >> we have raised $2 million. >> i actually am aroused by him. i like an old jewish guy who is a socialist. that is my type of guy. >> who has better hair? you or donald trump? >> that goes without saying. >> yeah. >> it looks like a map that is finally ready for an old white president again. >> donald trump is tired. he is tired of being made tired by being forced to stand on debate stage just for more than two hours, many observers
thought trump looked tired during the last republican debate which lasted three hours. now donald trump is threatening to boycott the next republican debate on cnbc, and in a letter to cnbc co-signed by donald trump and ben carson, they say they will not participate in a debate that is more than 120 minutes long including commercial debates. further, it must contain opening and closing statements from the candidates. cnbc then said our practice in the past has been to forego the opening statements to serve the public better. we will certainly take the candidates's format into consideration as we finalize the structure. translation, cnbc will give donald trump exactly what he wants, for two reasons. the first of course is the ratings, which is the guiding light for the decisions made in
commercial television. and the second is that donald trump is absolutely right. the first democratic debate on cnn had opening and closing statements and was a better debate for it. bernie sanders and hillary clinton's opening statements were among their strongest moments of the night. so strong that hillary clinton has turned her opening statement in the debate into a campaign commercial. >> i'm hillary clinton, i have been proud and privileged to serve as first lady, as a senator from new york and as secretary of state. i'm the granddaughter of a factory worker and the grandmother of a wonderful 1-year-old child. and every day i think about what we need to do to make sure that opportunity is available, not just for her, but for all of our children. >> debates are a flawed test, to put it mildly, for choosing a president. once elected, presidents don't
debate. they don't debate anyone. it is not part of the job, but giving speeches is. presenting their thoughts in a carefully composed way usually with the assistance of a teleprompter is part of being a president. done right, the opening and closing statements for the candidates could be the most presidential moments you see in the debate. as for the timing of the debate, the networks have been debating on the lengths to sell more air time. donald trump is right about that. cnn scheduled the democratic debate to begin at 8:00 p.m. and the first time we heard the candidate speak was 8:48 p.m., and two hours after that the debate was over, and no one complained that it was too short. joining us now, political analyst for msnbc, alex, so two hours is that enough of trump and company?
>> yes, yes, i agree with you, i think trump is totally right. three hours was an insane amount of time. i don't think we got any further into the issues. i mean the difference between the last republican debate was not about time nor substance. if anything, there should be a call put out saying oh, let's have a more substantive debate rather than a longer debate. >> and if they want to focus more on the frontrunners, tell chris christie to stay home. >> i think to a certain extent there is something to be said for mixing this up. i don't necessarily say that every debate that happens should be three-plus hours long. i do think you got a chance to see a side of donald trump that we don't normally see. he does short campaign rallies, crowds, people, in that particular case he was forced to
get tired and stand on his feet for a while. and frankly, he didn't have his crowd, it was a reagan library crowd from people more interested in hearing from jeb bush. i think it explains a lot about why he doesn't want to spend three hours on the stage this time. >> and carly fiorina's campaign is up there tweeting loudly. jeb bush isn't only low energy guy! looks like donald trump doesn't have the energy -- >> i think donald trump will get his way, as he points out, he is the ratings king. you can't have a debate without the first and second place candidate. i think he will get everything or everything close to what he wants. i agree with you, for a number of reasons, it will happen, but mostly because you can't have a debate without the number one.
>> the money number reports are coming in, ben carson leading with $20 million, jeb bush picking up only $13.4 million, followed closely by ted cruz at 12 million, carly fiorina, $6 million, rand paul, $2.5 million, others have not reported alex wagner, what do you make of that? >> the whole reason for his candidacy was he was going to overwhelm people with this money flow and that it would be too terrifying to go up against jeb bush, i don't think anybody is particularly scared. and you have establishment donors that are now giving marco rubio a real chance. and the more legitimate he becomes the more scary it is for jeb bush. >> but marco rubio is still raising half the money for jeb bush. >> i have people fighting how
much cash is available, does rubio have more, bush have more? both are raising election money, money they can't use. there is an argument that revealed, raised more than that. the reality is rubio is arriving in the polls, he is spending less money than jeb bush, who is on the air in new hampshire can't move his numbers. that is what his donors are so freaked out about. >> that is probably what is worse for jeb bush, new hampshire, which is a place he should do well, the advertising is not working and that is ultimately the way they were going to go in there and win it. >> well, new hampshire was a tough state for his brother in the 2000 republican primary. certainly he would be doing better than he is doing. they can spend a lot of money, i think what i would be interested in looking at when the reports
are fully available, exactly where he is spending the money, spending money on tv ads for later in the cycle and how much is being spent on the ground versus bloated staff. >> and we're getting reports they are cutting back on spending, alex. that is always that first indicator of the campaign in trouble especially when it's the big wealthy campaign that is supposed to have unlimited resources. >> and then it becomes a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy. and you see the guy who used to fly private, flying commercial around iowa, and that is sort of a bellweather. >> and you see that they knew they had to protect this number several weeks ago. this is not something that has just come up. >> we had a moment today with carly fiorina on the campaign
trail which contrasted very sharply with donald trump when a member of her audience got up and started talking about muslims. let's walk this. >> the muslims are really raising heck right now. they want to change our whole country to suit them. if they don't like the united states, beat it, take your camel and beat it. >> you know, people are so frustrated and angry with the immigration situation. let me say that one of the most important things about this nation is that we judge people as individuals. we judge people as individuals. we don't lump people in a category and say you're this, so therefore you think that. i'm not willing to condemn any group of people. >> alex wagner, donald trump should be taking notes. >> yes, he should be taking notes but to some extent i think carly fiorina plays to some of the middle voters, who are upset. and those that have been around for decades that are not going anywhere.
and the reality is look, donald trump is a force of nature but he is also tabbing into something that is very much still part of american society. and carly fiorina is also tapping into a dissatisfied group of voters. and i think she should be commended for pushing back on that. but at the end of the day neither one of them will be able to speak as strongly and powerfully in shutting down that kind of line of attack given the fact that there is some part of that base that they will continue to court. >> and what she did not say to that audience member is, you're right. >> that is right, lawrence, she didn't say you're wrong. but that was a pretty forceful statement, i think. and especially coming from carly fiorina, if alex is right and that she is courting the nativists in the way that donald trump is, this was certainly not a way to do that. and i think having candidates draw lines and talk about what it is to be an american and how we resident each other's, you know, the places where each other came from, we're all
citizens. i think that is an important moment for her and she probably gained 10% in the democratic primary from it. >> and casey, carly fiorina had already gone on record to say that donald trump was wrong to say that a muslim should not be a president. >> and i look at the other republicans in the field, carly fiorina distinguished herself there. the other thing more broadly i was struck listening to the democratic debate at just how different the conversations are that the two parties are having right now. the number of times border was mentioned in the democratic debate, hardly at all. dozens of times in the republican debate. they're focused on security and essentially that the country itself is surrounded and remains almost a theme in some cases. there is a climate of fear and terrorism. the democrats are talking about how we accept more people and open things up. >> we are just about the 90th day of the trump lead in the polls, not the beginning of the
campaigns. he has been at the top of the polls for 90 days. that compares to what we saw last time around, newt gingrich did three days at the top of the polls, rick perry, 33, herman cain, a glorious two -- >> you know who ended up winning and fighting with mitt romney to the end, rick santorum who was only at the top of the polls for 16 days. >> so how many more days -- >> how many more days that trump is at the their top? >> 37. >> all right, 37, 37 nights from now, all right, everybody stand by, we'll take a quick break. coming up, now, i thought hillary clinton won the debate. but what do i know? turns out focus groups and on-line polls tell another story. and author sam harris, to discuss their new book, religious tolerance, it began with an argument and ended with agreement.
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that is right, a fill in the blank quiz. of all the presidential candidates, donald trump has the biggest what? >> donald trump has the biggest lead consistently over the rest of the field? >> tax return, let's take a look at the picture where he filed his tax returns today, tweeted bit and stacked up what may or may not be his tax return. donald trump, the credibility level, who knows. he has a big tax return, for sure. >> that was a dangerous question, lawrence. >> you know what i was risking was the first thing that would come to your mind, but you know that is what we do here. >> which is what we call skating on thin ice, lawrence. >> all right, did bernie sanders really win that debate? coming up.
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just a little bit of democratic socialism is maybe not the worst type. >> for me, this man has removed my trepidation saying that capitalism and socialism can and should co-exist. >> the bernie sanders campaign announced that they have raised at least $2 million since the debate tuesday night. now, i along with most media observers thought that hillary clinton won that debate, but what do we know? >> 28 democrats, how many of you walked in here supporting hillary clinton, raise your hand. half of you. how many of you are still supporting hillary clinton? only a small percentage, so who do you think won the debate? >> bernie sanders. >> who do you think won the debate tonight? >> all right, so it looks like
we have -- what is that, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven -- so is looks like the young millennial voters here said bernie sanders won the debate with a few votes out there for hillary clinton. >> the former senior adviser to president obama made this observation on twitter, clinton had a great night of sanders winning the focus group and old line polls but the pundits saying he lost. alex wagner, who won? i give up. >> this is what we were realized about this campaign season, there is someone that the media thinks is winning or losing and then there is the reality like the grass roots or the voters. ben carson is on the right and had more facebook fans than hillary clinton and bernie sanders combined, right? he is the darling of the grass roots. bernie sanders obviously has some appeal that we in the media are not picking up on to the degree that the headlines yesterday all touted exactly the
same thing, which is hillary clinton won and by and large all the grass roots, the polling, the donations, what have you, all out there in the world points to the bernie sanders. >> and with focus groups and people changing their minds, hillary clinton supporters watching that debate and then turning away from her and switching to bernie sanders. >> don't you think it is the part of this that is concerning to her. is not necessarily undecided will look at bernie sanders and say he won, or even voters elsewhere saying he could be doing a little better job, but people worrying about support. i do think the way in which she really won, though, is there were a lot of people in her campaign. a lot of people in the professional quad that certainly thought her campaign was off the rails and being able to get it back on is important. the one thing i have not seen from bernie sanders yet is the ability to build a nationwide campaign, to put together the
kind of campaign staff to do that. the ability to get super -- we're looking at an area where bernie sanders has a lot to do to get to the point where he is competitive for the nomination. >> let's get back to frank luntz' focus group where frank just brought up that word. seth mcfarland just used socialist. >> in a word to describe bernie sanders. >> for the people. >> strong. >> direct. >> sincere. >> powerful. >> educated. >> smart. >> he actually answered the question about being a socialist, i know you're nodding your head no, do you really think that bernie sanders can win? >> i don't think he can. i understand the appeal of his proposal. but i don't think he can win. i think --
>> i think the unrest in the country regarding looking for radical change to some of the problems we have been facing is so deep that this could be the year that somebody like that gets in. >> casey hunt, bernie sanders has appeal that is -- that defies what we think -- what some of us thought we were watching in that debate. >> that is right, i think it may be part of the reason why you saw donald trump attack bernie sanders on instagram today as being weak. words like strong and powerful being used. i do think partly to jonathan's point, facebook like do not make votes like. just because you have thousands of facebook likes doesn't mean these people are actually going to show up for you. this is not american idol, you have to go out, get out in the cold and put your ballot out there and punch the ticket. and convincing the people to do that -- >> to be fair, the question was who won the debate, which is very different than who is going to win the election? which i think is important --
who watched the debate -- >> go ahead. >> i was just going to say focus groups are so small how many hundreds of people fewer than you would need to do a national poll that would be reputable or do you have sitting in that room. >> all right, let's go to the conclusive proof that bernie sanders really arrived in that debate. donald trump is now attacking him. let's listen to this. >> i watched hillary clinton last night with we're going to give this, we're going to give that. she has to give everything away, because this maniac that was standing on her right is giving everything away, so she is following. that is what is happening. this sialist/communist, okay? nobody wants to say it. no! no, in all fairness to her, she is standing there listening to this guy, he is going to tax you
people at 90%. going to take everything. and nobody has heard the term communists. but you know what? i call him a socialist/communist, because that is what he is. >> donald doesn't know what a socialist or a communist is. >> i think him going after bernie sanders gives bernie sanders a couple of new cycles and that ultimately hurts hillary clinton. that could be one or the other, what level of strategy you think this is. >> we'll see if he keeps it up. jonathan allen, casey hunt, and alex wagner. and president obama committed troops indefinitely today as the taliban's war continues today, including the taliban's war on women. up next, the author of the new book "islam and the future of tolerance." you get used to the lingering
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we figure you probably don't have time to wait on hold. that's why at xfinity we're hard at work, building new apps like this one that lets you choose a time for us to call you. so instead of waiting on hold, we'll call you when things are just as wonderful... [phone ringing] but a little less crazy. we're doing everything we can to give you the best experience possible. because we should fit into your life. not the other way around. as commander-in-chief i will not allow afghanistan to be used as safe haven for terrorists to attack our nation again. i have decided that instead of going down to a normal embassy presence in kabul by the end of 2016 we will maintain 5500 troops at a small number of bases. >> on the day when president obama announced an endless american military commitment in
afghanistan, page one of "the new york times" today carried the headline, fear of taliban drives women out of kunduz. one woman said i won't go back, i'll never go back. and it tells the story of the only female civil engineer working in kunduz who put on a burka and fled when the taliban arrived. she, too, says she will not return. an afghan government official also fled. she was the head of the women's ministry office in kunduz, she told "the new york times" if your life is in danger and you knew there was a significant threat, would you go back? i am sure you would not. in the over thousand word early, they called the taliban's campaign against women but it never offered a single reason for that methodical campaign and the article did not contain a single reference to the religion
that the taliban says compels them to do this. joining us now, the authors of "islam, and the future of tolerance, a dialogue." sam, i want you to tell the story how this book began with a bit of an argument between you two and how you then came together to do this book. >> yeah, well, thank you, lawrence, happy to be here. we had an inauspicious meeting, in the debate, he had taken an opposing side in the debate where he more or less argued islam was a religion of peace. i think he will admit he was constrained by the emotion of the debate there. at the end there was a dinner, and he asked me if there was anything i needed to say in
response to the debate. so i directed a question to him, we were sitting 50 feet apart with a restaurant 75 people or so listening to us. i said why can't you just be honest with us in this room? we're not being taped now. is your view of how to move islam forward simply pretending that it's a religion of peace when it's clearly not a religion of peace. >> as you may imagine, things broke down, it was a testosterone moment, where he said are you calling me a liar? it was probably good we were not sitting at the same table. i saw a further point, a basis for conversation and reached out to him. and this book was the result. and i think readers will agree, i hope they will agree it was a very productive conversation. >> it really is, it's such a quick read. because it is really this conversation that you're having
with each other. i -- your answer to sam about this is complex, and actually in effect takes an entire book. but it was to paraphrase that it is not a religion of peace, it is not a religion of war, it is a religion. i had 12 years of catholic education and i completely got that. there seems to be a necessary amount of religious education required almost to be able to participate in these discussions. >> yes, thank you for having me as well, lawrence. and good to be on with you. i agree in the summary, the point you made, the challenge we're facing today are there are plenty of people on the politically correct side of this debate who are prepared to take the view that it's not a religion of war. the problem is at the same time
what they're not prepared to do is recognize although it may not be a religion of war, it's ultimately not a religion of peace. the correct conclusion would be to say that islam has nothing to do with the taliban actions, and i highlight the glaring absence of anyone seeing the fact it is used as justification for the taliban's actions. i think the correct answer would be to say it has not nothing to do with islam, just as the correct answer is to say it has everything to do with islam. the correct answer is i spent my whole life, and i use the word liberally, consumed by this debate, i think it is correct to say it has something to do with islam. that something is the connection between belief and action. the connection between one's interpretation, what one believes scripture is saying to what one believes they must do.
and the people on the liberal side of this day, my tribe, i ran for liberal candidate in britain, where for some they're too scared to make that connection and say there is something to do here with islam as well as the other factors that call for radicalization. >> majid, i just want to clarify for the audience, you yourself have a radical islamic history, you went through that period if you could just quickly summarize that for us. >> exactly, that is what i meant by somebody consumed. i speak affluent arabic, 13 years around the leadership, and i was sentenced to five years for my role attempting to incite the egyptians against the mubarak regime. i was a member of an islam extreme organization. >> i found that clarifying, let's talk about that. you, too, agreed that the
jihadist is somebody trying to impose islamic rule by violence, and islamic, somebody who would like to see somebody in an otherwise civil society but doesn't want to go to a violent level. and then there are these other interesting gradations in the book, conservative liberal, moderate muslim, and those terms are thrown around today without an agreement on what they mean. >> yeah, that was a very clarifying part of our conversation. we're talking about the problem of islamism, the problem of political islam. and the subset, the jihadists who are willing to use immediate violence to impose their issue. the crucial issue here, the ideas, the link with the
behavior, denied across the board, on what we're calling the aggressive left side, those people who just followed him off the edge of the world and believe that everything that is happening in the muslim world is the result of u.s. foreign policy, there are no monsters in the world apart from ourselves or those we've made. we created the mujahadeen, and france created its muslim population so bad through, some believe. we're talking about theocracy, people opposed to gender equality, gay rights and free speech, the freedom that guarantees all of our intellectual and moral advances. and we have people on the left who will blame a new hip cartoonists -- liberal
cartoonists get murdered for drawing cartoons and people on the left line up to blame the cartoonists for their insensitivity. that is how far this rot has spread into -- has driven us into these preposterous moral stances. that is why this conversation i had with majid was so valuable to me, he alone among all the people i interacted with could clarify these issues from the point of somebody who had this limited experience. and yet that has not stopped liberals from deriding him as an uncle tom or a porch monkey or native informant. these are words that have come from liberal journalists. it's quite an incredible situation. >> let's take a break here, when we come back i want to ask you something about what president obama said today. he said we will stay in afghanistan until the taliban agrees with a peace settlement with the afghan government. does that mean we are there forever?
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>> with sam harris, majid, how long will it take to get the taliban to enter a peace agreement, a real one with the afghan government? >> well, until president obama and all the leaders across the world can recognize that we're not dealing with just the military problem. we're not dealing with just the legal problem. and we're certainly not dealing with just a political problem. but in fact what we have in our hands here is a fully over-blown ideology, distinct from the religion of islam. i think we'll be there forever, all of us, our viewers, yourself, the american people, you will remember when president obama killed osama bin laden and declared that al qaeda had been dealt with before his second term. i was in the u.s. during those
days warning everybody that actually, this is one area -- that is what happens when you deal with the ideological insurgency, when you kill the leaders, more emerge until we render the ideology as unattractive, as soviet stalinism has happened today. >> i want to get your reaction to ben carson saying he would not vote for a muslim for president. he doesn't think we should have a muslim president. >> so do you believe that islam is consistent with the constitution? >> no, i do not. i would not advocate that we put a muslim in charge of this nation. i absolutely would not agree with that. >> well, the problem with that statement, it then went on to clarify it a little bit. he walked it back. and certainly in the final analysis, seemed less bigoted
than when it first came out. but the problem with carson, he is a bible-thumping christian himself, thinking that charles darwin came up with the theory of evolution because he was led there by satan. so this is not a rational point of view of any great importance. ben carson worries me but i think it's understandable that he views the world that way because he is a kind of christian literalist. >> maajid, if you were allowed one question at one of our presidential debates what would that be? >> would it be a question of the republican or the democrat? >> well, let's say the republican debate. >> well, in which case i would certainly focus on both trump's apparent acquiescence, when somebody suggested that a muslim
should not be president. and sam and i agreed in our dialogue, the issue, the challenge is certainly not muslim-americans. in fact, it's worthwhile mentioning, both groups have graced incredible areas of discrimination. the problem is those that view their religion, the islamists, i would like to make that clear, present liberal muslims of examples that could be incredibly good presidents of the united states if they were ever given that opportunity. >> and what about the democrats? what would you raise with them? >> with the democrats, it would be a question of foreign policy as i hinted at earlier. incredibly let down i feel by
the approach to the middle east. the approach to the growth of jihadism, as a subset to the ideology in the middle east. i suggest for them to take a lead from prime minister cameron who has overcome the voldemar effect, overcoming the fear of naming the islamist ideology. and i would suggest to the democrats they take a lead from his book. >> thank you for joining us tonight. really appreciate it. the book is islam and the future of tolerance. coming up, a lighter book, a much lighter book. dick van dyke is here with his new book "keep moving." ♪ ♪ the beautiful sound of customers making the most of
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afghanistan, american special operations analysts were gathering intelligence on the facility which they knew was a protected medical site because they believed it was being used by a pakistani operative to coordinate taliban activity. according to an unnamed former intelligence official. the dossier included maps with the hospital circled. the president of doctors without borders which ran that hospital said this would amount to a premeditated massacre. 22 patients and hospital staff were killed in that attack. doctors without borders called on president obama to assist in an independent investigation into that matter. and when we come back, we will change the subject and the mood. dick van dyke will join us. some cash back cards love to overcomplicate things. like limiting where you earn bonus cash back.
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to the forefront. and then there are the movies kids are watching every day. mary poppins, dick van dyke's new book is called keep moving and other tips and truths about aging, and he joins us now from our los angeles studio. dick, it is great to see you. thank you for doing this. you know, i was telling people today that maybe i don't know, ten years ago i was driving up to malibu to meet my friend who invited me to your beach house for the day with my daughter who was about ten. and i started to explain to her who dick van dyke was, and she said oh, come on, mary poppins, bye, bye, birdie. you get it from all over, don't you? >> yes, can i thank you for
being an island of sanity in all of this chaos. >> you know, things i discovered in this book, your time with martin luther king jr., tell the story about how you came to participate in the civil rights movement with martin luther king jr. >> he was -- giving a speech at the coliseum at ucla. and rod serling wrote the most beautiful, beautiful speech about -- the subject. and i was chosen to deliver it. i was so pleased. the only thing i'm embarrassed about is that somebody from the secret service said there has been a threat on doctor king's life. and we just wanted you to know. if was sitting next to him like this, a coward.
>> yeah, well, i mean, that was obviously a real threat. and as we discovered a few years later -- you also tell a story back in that period about the aftermath of the watts riot in 1965 you got involved in that community. and there was a night where you invited a family from there you had gotten to know to come to your house. and the lapd had a very strange reaction to that. >> yes, to this day, i don't know exactly what happened. a black panther at that time, we were all going down afterwards, they called us the guilty suburbanites to listen to some of the people who befriend us. we did what we could. and for some reason i had a call from the police, they said the place was surrounded with armed people. i don't know what happened and to this day, i don't know.
but it all turned out fine. >> the sweep of history in your life is amazing. and i'm not concentrating on the show business stuff just because i think a lot of people already know a lot about that. but i was fascinated to hear about you listening on the radio to the presidential election returns when fdr won and what that felt like. >> i think everybody knew that he would be going to win. who are the fdrs and the moynahans today? we need them. there are too many lightweights today. i voted for harry truman and i voted for ike. and i would again. >> what do you think is happening. you go back to the time where you had to listen to the stuff on the radio, we had the internet, the cable news, the saturation on politics. it's a very different world now, do you think things were better then or now?
>> communication is much better now, but unfortunately some of the cable stations are slanters, so far as to almost be propaganda politically. you are have to listen to everybody. ted turner didn't know what he started, with the 24-hour cable. >> no, i am a believer that bernie sanders did win the -- >> oh, good, let's hear about that. >> you watched it, you thought bernie sanders won? >> pardon. >> you watched the whole debate and thought that bernie sanders won? >> absolutely, i thought that bernie sanders sounded an alarm for a problem that has been around for 100 years. he wonders about becoming an oligarky. >> thank you very much for joining us, great to see you again.
the book is keep moving and other tips and truths about aging, dick van dyke gets tonight's last word. thank you. >> what is this? >> it's a critic a teacher, critic a teacher vast right-wing conspiracy. let's play hardball. good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. one thing is certain in american politics this october before the presidential election. the republican party is putting all its eggs in one basket. that basket is called benghazi. to defeat hillary clinton with the candidates they have looks to be an extremely uphill task.