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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  December 21, 2016 3:00pm-4:01pm PST

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but the county auditor rejected it due to a six-we're blackout surrounding a general election, it will be full of holiday cheer and vote signs apparently everywhere. let's see how many people turn out between christmas and new years. good night. hello. it is 6:00 p.m. on the east coast. what does a half blind trust look like? looking for some innovatives. what do we know and what can be proven about the election hack? i'll talk with glen green wald. also the manhunt. a new europe wide search for the man suspected in the deadly truck attack in berlin.
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we begin with our top story. donald trump searching for a new way to address his business conflicts of interest. experts have called on him to do what others have done, separate them into a blind trust. sources close to trump now say he is considering a halfway measure called, we're not making this up, a half-blind trust. politico's noting that trump aides spoke to current government officials called tech nick lay discretionary trust that allows trump or his family members inside and how the businesses are faring, while also allowing trump continuing to make money from those investments. to be clear, this is just one option on the table that they're considering. they may wind up doing something else. we don't know because donald trump canceled his press conference to explain his plan on conflicts. we'll keep reporting whether trump holds that announcement or not. here's why this new report
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matters. even if trump does not go this route. the fact a half blind trust is currently under consideration, a month out from inauguration, shows that trump was not telling the whole story when he told 60 minutes after the election, he didn't even care about his businesses anymore or when he was on that debate stage and said he would use some kind of blind trust. >> are you planning on putting your assets in a blind trust? >> if i become president, i couldn't care less about my company. it is peanuts. i want to use the same up here, whatever it may be, to make america rich again and to make america great again. i have ivanka and eric and don sitting there. run the company, kids. have a good time. i'm going to do it for america. >> so would you put night blind trust. >> well, i don't know if it is a blind trust if they run it. is that a blind trust?
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i don't know. i would probably have my children run it. >> beyond the broken pledges up to today, there is also a pattern. trump's team said they plan an immediate transfer of management of the company to his children. then the plan was for the two sons to focus on the business instead of government, which would be fine. now they are showing up at key transition meetings like the one with tech executives and this week they were caught setting up a new organization, asking for $1 million in donations in exchange for access, not only to them but for trump himself the day after the inauguration. the central for public integrity broke that story and they said they didn't know they were two of the four people on that government filing that we're showing you right there. as the story keeps changing, the clock is ticking. it is hard to see how a quote half blind trust would get trump out of this sticky business ask there's no such thing as being
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half blind. just like no such thing as halfway crooks and no such thing as halfway pregnant. joining me, josh, who broke the story as well as david corn, washington bureau chief for mother jones and an msnbc political analyst. what are your sources telling you today? >> well, this is what we heard is that there is a special type of trust that they are exploring with government ethics officials. they don't technically call it a half blind trust. they call it discretionary and it seemed to arise out of wealthy people who served in government before who maybe had some assets in the family that they expected to get but weren't guaranteed to get. and at various times, government officials have said that's okay. that doesn't invoke federal laws if you're not sure if you're going to receive the money or the property or the company. >> you're partly talking about situations where items, assets
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and other potential wealth may not have been fully realized yet. has this ever been flied something as massive as donald trump's international business? >> no. it's not a good fit by any means to his situation. i'm not sure of any situation where the ethics officials had something set up to get around these laws. they blessed pre existing arrangements or said that they were not ethically problematic. if you go down the road, many of the other arrangements like a true blind trust, it is unclear why you would want to go that way at all. >> i'm worried we're really falling downhill when we have to call it a true blind trust because there's a half blind trust. i think it is either fully blind our get the other stuff. i want to bring in our panelists. the political satirist was responding to josh's reporting here today.
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and he wrote in the land of the blind, the one-eyed trust is king, david. >> or sometimes the half blind are leading the quarter blind. it is a ridiculous situation josh is reporting, solid on this. and donald trump has said time and time again that whatever it took, he would separate himself, distance himself from his business. but there are so many problems. we can spend the whole show listing the conflicts of interest. they include huge loans with foreign banks, some of which might come under regulatory actions. how he gets out from under this will take a lot of work and it is pretty clear that donald trump has not gotten on this. he has had over a month now to start, to do this. he knew the issue that would be there before the election. he hasn't prepared much for the election or for this. and of course he will be violating the constitution and
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the emoluments clause and i'm not sure a blind trust will address that if there is any, if the trump hotel continues to exist as the trump hotel. >> you're referring to the constitution's ban on any and all foreign gifts intended to affect thepresident. there is a mythology around donald trump that he's snuff doesn't listen and none of this matters because we're just talking and he'll do what he wants. as we mentioned, they have tried move some things, at least when caught on. top of that, even people like newt gingrich are saying, hold. on we're not signing on to four years of you can do anything with government assets and money coming in the front door. take a listen to newt. >> until now, donald trump has said, trust me. >> that will not last. this is not a country that wanders around trusting people
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with power. this is a country that wants accountability. he is unique and i totally defend him against those, for example, put the holdings in a blind trust. which is an absurdity. >> explain it to us. at least the rhetoric of, you can't just sell off assets of the government. like trying to sell air force one. but he has to have his hands on the company. >> the cornerstone of the trump campaign from the earliest days of the trump campaign. there will be no pay to play politics this washington, d.c. the way we've previously had it. that we're going to drain the swamp. trump has been calling himself the ultimate roto-rooter of washington, d.c. now in an interview with npr said the whole drain the swamp stuff, we won't talk about that so much anymore. donald trump has moved beyond that. we've seen just a couple of
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examples. very profound ones where donald trump, however, has engage in the what is pay to play politics. as you talked about, the story of this nonprofit organization effectively selling access to the president and donald trump's son, serving as directors of the organization. you have ivanka being auctioned off for coffee. >> and you were involved in the reporting. what did you think of the pushback saying these were brain storms and we won't be involved? >> that seems somewhat implausible. you have a document circulating all throughout the donation and contributing circles in zpees beyond. that he laid it out. you give $500. you get this kind of access. if you gave million, it's even better. >> when you say his sons' defense is implausible, is that because you work at a place for the central of public integrity
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and you don't want to say "lie" and it's mean? >> we've had a number of different explanations. the walkback has been pretty incredible over the past 24, 48 hours. and effectively since the story broke, they've been walking everything back and saying the trump brothers, the two sonls are not involved. donald trump won't be at this event. an event that would be taking place and still ostensibly will take place the day after the inauguration in washington, d.c. at the convention story. not a small deal. >> is are there a bunch of plans on the table and he hasn't picked one? >> you have so many different assets. the assets all around the world as you were discussing earlier. you have these branding agreements. a lot of it is very confusing. how do you tell someone that signed a branding agreement with donald trump and agreed to pay a
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certain amount of money to put his name on the building that now you'll put another name on the building, mcdonald's or something. some of it is very, very confusing, how you unwind it. and i think they're down in the muck trying to get through these issues. the hotel if washington, another one that's very, very difficult to square. >> who is working on it? they've consulted with people like in, i think there are around 500 different assets and limited partnerships and so forth listed on the financial disclosure campaign. >> the problem with that at a basic level, you can put a lot of lawyers in the room. a lot of paperwork in the room. you can talk about a lot of money. if you don't have a client who
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has made a decision about what you're doing, then lawyers are kind of flapping around in the conference room wasting their time. >> that's a good point. you make a lot of good points. clearly donald trump has to say, i want to be clear. unlike caesar's wife, above it all. that may mean, too, ivanka is running his company if it is not in a blind trust and her husband is an adviser. maybe he has to say that, there should be strict rules for that. there's so much tied up. he has done this to himself. he brought his children into the governing process when they didn't have to be. >> exactly. it has gotten to the point where even the trump family's conflicts have conflicts. and these are avoidable conflicts. it is not normal to bring children who have no expertise into these meetings. they didn't have to do it. pointing out a problemmatic
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conflict of interest is pointing out they've been thrust into an untenable position. we don't i don't know donald trump has done had because he hand had a press conference. we will continual our reporting on it. new tonight, progressive groups saying the election mourning, that's over. tonight they're saying it is time to get on with the fighting. and we're learning key details about what democrats want to do and what they want washington democrats to do. plus the controversy over russian hacking e-mails ask who are all these anonymous e-mails? the person who broke the nsa surveillance story is here live. next. but there will still be pain. it comes when your insurance company says they'll only pay three-quarters of what it takes to replace it. what are you supposed to do? drive three-quarters of a car?
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about donald trump at all of it is about how democrats are planning to deal with him in washington. hillary has been complaining about it but other democrats striking a more aggressive tone. vising his aide to go on offense. this is jesse ferguson. he was a top strategist all year for hillary clinton and he said the democrats the opposition party about w the real mandate. he said clinton won as many votes in 2012 which is 2.8 million more than trump and that democrats gained seats in the house and the senate in this election which is a forgotten fact. ferguson is not alone. there are some new battle plans. they're merging with the voting rights group to build a permanent center of opposition against donald trump. and for a president-elect who uses lawsuits and threats to try to get his way, some democratic
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attorneys general now ridge is handlely looking for legal ways to hold donald trump accountable in court. even while liberals work on these efforts, democrats are unsure whether to battle trump or look for common ground. we've seen people from chuck schumer to bernie sanders saying they might want to give trump legislative victories on the bills which is a different message than i'll see knew court. joining no break it down is the ohio senator 19 a turner. a big bernie sanders support here has been criticized, and we're back with david corn again. nina, your thoughts on this. >> some of that is true. we may have won the popular vote but not the power. and those are two different things. you have to win the power. but do i appreciate that some democratic leaders and some folks who advised democrats are saying, stop having a pity
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party. it is time to stop it. he won. he got the electoral college votes and it is time to move. if we're going to change it starting next year, leading into 2018, 2019, 2020 and beyond. >> two pieces to this. one is that tone does matter. when you only talk about the idea that fbi, russia was unfair, which may be important to get into. when you only talk about that. it can feel like, wow, you you must have gotten blown out. many people have said, you see this online and in other forums. if donald trump got 2.8 million votes, don't you think he would have a different message even if he lost the electoral college? >> absolutely. and it comes down to whining. there is no crying in baseball, no crying in politics. we have to really figure out why we lost, how we lost and what we'll do moving forward. and that's why initiatives like the new georgia project, led by
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leader stacy abram is one example of what we can do. i believe we have a persuasion problem. we try persuade ideological voters, instead of trying on persuade people who don't vote. why it matters and why the party is the right party. she would battleground states like ohio, we have a cultivation problem. in states like georgia and other states in the south and southwest, we have a registration and cultivation problem. so we need one that we follow. to be steadfast instead of always being zoosed by the shiny object which is the presidency. meanwhile we've lost over 900 legislator seats from 2010 to now. >> that's a damming statement you've raised. >> what i am interested in is just developing a whole new
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generation of talent. and making sure whatever resources, credibility, spotlight that i can bring to help them rise up. that's something that i can do well. michelle can do well. is it hard to do when it is quite established? >> that's one way to put it. i think the democrats are really in an all the above period. they need to work on issues, messaging. they need to recruit some vot s voters. they need to get out more of their base. and it is key, they need to win local races at the local and state legislative deal.
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all the groups that are alive at the dnc need to think about building this infrastructure that does recruit candidates and does the nuts and bolts work of turning toward the democratic side of the aisle because remember, there is another census coming out in 2020. after that, they'll be redistricting again. and they will continue on control jury mannedering and give themselves. >> final thought? >> we just have to stop. all the variables, russia, all of those variables may be there. but the bottom line is that democrats lost and the 2016 election was really just the straw that broke the camel's
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back. and we've got to go backwards a little bit to analyze what happened in 2010, in 2014, what happened in this year's election, and really get to the root of this matter so that we are connecting with the vote here's really need to know from their gut that the democratic party, not just in words but also in deeds, is the party to take this to the next level, the party that cares about the working poor. and we can't only say that we when we need people to come out to vote. this election cycle was a change election, anti-establishment, and democrats didn't want to hear that but i'm hoping they're hearing it now. >> i'm hearing you. nina turner, david corn, thank you for being here. still ahead, that europe-wide manhunt for the man who drove truck in the attack in
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violence in germany and turkey, president-elect trump with his security adviser. the meeting comes during a european wide manhunt for the tunisian man suspected in that deadly truck attack. 24-year-old is described by authorities as violent and armed. the germans say he was under surveillance for several months. >> what can you tell us? >> he is 23 years old, he turns 24 tomorrow.
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this manhunt has metastasized. we're seeing a reward that now exceeds $100,000 in order to track down and provide any evidence about this young tunisian man. when we look at his history, it is quite interesting. if there is a profile, he seem to follow in it material of his criminal history. not because he follows a particular religious belief or an as you tear version of islam. quite the opposite. he has a history of petty crime, brawling, drug abuse, drunkenness, drug activity. he's been detained and under suspicion in three countries, tu german authorities are feeling quite embarrassed they were
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planning on expediting him back to tunisia. because of the a snafu, they couldn't verify that he was a tunisian citizen, they were not able to do that. >> thank you. we should note that jeh johnson will be on the rachel maddow show tonight. still ahead, could donald trump have won the popular vote if he just wanted to? we have the final numbers. also, should you be more skeptical on the russian election hack? ♪ as soon as i became a parent i changed as a person, drastically. ♪ i tried hard to quit smoking. ♪ but when we brought our daughter home that was it. ♪ now i have nicoderm cq. the nicoderm cq patch with unique extended
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the u.s. government is in transition until january 20 but russia is expanding in several ways. russia talked tuesday about syrian war plans, cutting out the and u.s. the u.n. russian sources say they're testing the anti-satellite weapon in space. that they're freezing relations with the u.s. now this wrangling comes amidst the controversy over russia hacking e-mails in the u.s. election. while some examples of the hacking are actually known, the actual details have come mostfully anonymous leaks by
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u.s. intelligence officials. some democratic officials are treating it as different ini have the. a long way from the often justified system. the pulitzer prize winning reporter who broke the story said many people are making an old mistake. and he warns, a anonymous claims linked to newspapers about what they believe do not constitute proof and do not constitute reliable evidence that substitutes for actual evidence that can be reviewed. have we really not learned this lesson yet? joining me, glen green wald, editor of the intercept. good evening to you. how would you like to see it applied? >> i would like to see it applied the way that any rational person, let alone a political citizen ought to be functioning cognitively and in terms forming beliefs. there is a distinction between
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on the one hand, faith based beliefs. when you put your trust in a person or an institution or a religious leader so when they say that, you have faith in that individual to tell you the truth. and the opposite of that is a rational based way of thinking. you don't except a claim just because somebody makes it. you need to actually see evidence for it. and the second come possibly is exactly what we're lacking when it come to claiming the russian government is behind the leaks. >> let's stipulate that it has not come out that it needs to be declassified but there is stale spectrum that investigators, lawyers, intelligence officials all use. and the argument is that the public accounting of the e-mail is known. that there was a lead-up of intelligence about russia doing
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this. then it was done. they're saying this was russia and hit certain political goals. would you say that all of that adds to strong evidence as a general matter? >> no, no. you just identified what agents have claimed, what agencies have claimed. agencies with a long history of error that are designed to disseminate information. that are subject to group think. that are political actors, that have constantly disseminated claims that turned out to be false. you have taken all of those agencies and you just describe in the your question to me what they claim. what evidence is there? definitive, circumstantial or otherwise that they have presented that suggest that the russian government is behind these leaks. there is none. what is the evidence? >> i'm asking you the question. i think the back ground is, what they predicted ask then fact the e-mails were released. but yes, to your point, what we
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want, what everyone has been calling for is some declassified aspect of the motive. now, turning to the politics of this. are you of the view that democratic elected officials are basically using a different standard because they like and agree with the outcome of this particular set of leaks? i think what they are doing, they thought this was a winning tactic. to link donald trump to a country that they tried to build into this really scary threat. barack obama spent eight years saying russia is not the scary threatful he mocked mitt romney for trying to do that in 2012. but i think it was an election year tactic. fear is a really potent weapon. but i think americans when they wake up in the morning don't wake up worried about vladimir putin and what the kremlin is doing. it proved to be a losing political technique. and since the election, democrats like a lot of americans including myself are
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disoriented, still in shock and just grappling for explanations, and screaming putin over and over and accusing them of being kremlin stooges. you mentioned trying on link critics to russia. it is a fairly deplorable political tactic. here is howard dean, the former chairman of the dnc and a guess on this network, saying today, it would be interesting to find out if the intercept gets money from russia or iran. and then responding to an allegation, not proving that the intercept has morphed into a russian propaganda machine. dean said, that's been the case for a while. i want to give you an opportunity to respond. >> he sounds like the love child of j. edgar hoover.
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to cast that insinuation with no evidence whatsoever about a media outplet has criticized him. that is tactic the far right used for decades, as you know. during a cold war. to smear every democrat and every liberal who said we ought to have better relations with russia. who questioned propaganda about the kremlin. to say you're a disloyal american. there were investigations because of those claims. it is astonishing to watch democrats resort to those tactics. and as a political matter, i don't think it will get them very far. ethically, it is rep rehencible. >> and the final question. do you a lot on espionage. where do you think democratic party and liberals go from here? >> i'm really hoping that the democrats find their footing. because there are a lot of very
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serious dangers that a trump presidency poses. we need an opposition that is serious about how to impede certain policy proposals that donald trump has said he would pursue that will run rough shod over the interests of lots of people. that's the why i'm hoping that democrats stop calling people putin stooges and focus on the much more approximate and immediate danger that's a trump presidency poses. >> thank you for your time. >> great to be with you. thank you. coming up, donald trump is claiming he could have won the popular vote. he just didn't. we have the new numbers. this was interesting. trump's campaign manager dishing on when she said she advised that he was headed for victory. how did she know? we have our panel straight ahead.
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welcome back. we're going to get cracking with our political panel. a man who i have been on tv with and had the pleasure of being on with for what, ten years? >> that's look time. >> it's crazy. you don't age. it takes a while to get to the final vote but it's here. clinton up by 2.86 million votes. this is interesting. she ends with 48.2% total compared to trump's 46.1. that means trump won with a lower vote share than mitt romney had when he lost last cycle. trump pushing back saying he would have campaigned differently if this were a popular vote contest and he spent far less money than clinton which is true. >> that is true. i think the idea that trump could have somehow won more
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votes had he attempted on win more votes is a little bit laughable. towed make up that millions of people were voting illegally to explain why he lost the popular vote by such a large margin. >> let's be fair. he was lying about that but right now he's not lying about that. >> it is true. he spent less money. and everybody's tactics would change if we moved to a popular vote. if you have major cities be real swing areas, all of a sudden that would drive tim cost of campaigns. the reason why it is important is because the electoral college was established to make sure that slave states were able to hold outside power, even though they disenfranchised large majorities of the population. that's not something we need to do today. >> i think you make a great appointment. the electoral system is the constitution. that's something we respectful we're in a rule of law nation.
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it is also whack. what do you make about donald trump saying hey, i would have won in a different way if i needed to? >> if i was five inches taller, i might have played in the nba. seriously. whether you're a fan or not of donald trump, he did, he really ran a very, very successful campaign. he was able to without spending lots of money, to really energize his base and to get them out to vote and he did it by using social media and also by using free media. being the core of the news every single day that he was out there on the campaign trail and really helped him a great deal to galvanize support. i was one of the people who thought he would not win the electoral college. his voters showed up to vote in
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north carolina and pennsylvania and lots of places, wisconsin, lots of places. >> we talked on a lot of republicans who didn't expect him to win and yet victory is written by the victors. kellyanne conway said she was one of the few who saw this win coming in late october. >> well, by about october 22nd, i knew he would win. and i told him that. >> october 22nd. >> that account has not been confirmed by in other sources. that's news speak for no one else has said this. five days later we know that trump's own team drop his estimated chance of winning down to a measly 17%. what is she doing here? >> i'm not sure. i haven't had a chance to talk to her. clearly all the polling date that i saw, i wasn't really an insider in the campaign. i was just analyzing the campaign. all the polling date that i saw
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showed hillary clinton winning on election day. and i think a lot of americans like me were surprised when they saw donald trump win florida and north carolina and pennsylvania and michigan and wisconsin. all critical states for him to win the electoral college which he ended up winning. i was surprised. i'm glad kellyanne had her finger on the pulse. did i talk to my friends on the campaign trail and said, they thought there was a good chance that donald trump would win given the enthusiasm. >> he also had the energy of the russians and the fake news sites and republican attempts -- >> how about the kellyanne conway thing? >> october 28 was when comey said he was reintroducing hillary clinton investigations.
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i think if you knew something was not way or the other, that wouldn't hold all the way. >> i think i misunderstood your point. you're saying that the sequence of events would not have supported that thinking that then. >> absolutely not. no one wants to see, i felt pretty good about our chances. no one wants to see a race get thrown into upheaval like that at the very end. but it doesn't make for it to be plausible to be the only one who knew. >> we talk about the voters but american elections are full of the people who don't vote. 100 million eligible voters didn't turn out. how do they feel about it? 44% do regret not voting in november. but more of them, 55% are just fine with it saying they don't have any regrets at all. most said they didn't vote because they were too busy or did not like the candidates.
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15%. they didn't vote because they were sure who would win. we believe in vote nog matter what. even if you don't like either candidate. there's always a reason to get out there. that last answer is how a lot of people feel. and economists say your single vote is unlikely to move the election. >> it's true. if we moved to a single vote system, it would go down. right now republicans in liberal places like new york city have very little voice like democrats in texas. if we moved to that, everyone would feel more empowered, more the enfranchised. we have to focus on the local stuff organization ballot initiatives, on the ground game. >> you're concluding where you began. >> final word, americans, vote. exercise your right to vote. so many people died and fade ultimate price to make sure every american would have the
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right to vote. it is here. please exercise the right to vote going forward. >> all right. thank you both for joining me. if i don't see you, merry christmas. >> we know donald trump likes to tweet. how has technology changed this sxleks what parallels are there from past races? they might surprise you. ♪ gaviscon is a proven heartburn remedy that gives you fast-acting, long-lasting relief. it immediately neutralizes acid and only gaviscon helps keep acid down for hours. for fast-acting, long-lasting relief, try doctor-recommended gaviscon.
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donald trump continues to claim his victory a lands slide, like a reagan style blowout. actually had reagan won 49 states, it was big. trump's victory far narrower as we've reported today. and some liken his rise to actually older wlekss technology swiftly changed how voters got information and scrambled which politicians would excel in the new environment. our next guest. you can't understand his rise without looking at the way he deploys twitter to reach and confuse his followers just like the 1930s and 40s with the big shift in that era. the rise of radio. that suddenly brought many people into a new way of receiving communication. a huge jump. the media changed how
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information reached the public. it was a crucial tool in italy, spain and germany ask radio couldal reply identify ideas that were previously restricted in the u.s. discourse. president roosevelt began the first national radio addresses. it helped shape the way many previous politicians could have never dreamed of. breaking it down, the strategist who worked for president obama and advised clinton. what do you mean that donald trump is using the internet the way radio had been used by politicians? >> if you look at the way radio worked in the 1930s, it was a direct communications investigating vehicle to reach a wide populace. social media works in almost the exact same way. it allows for messages that were previously not main stream to be freely expressed.
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the same way in the 1930s. feelings about anti-semitism and racial superiority which had been not been heard. and it allowed people to get involved and to carry their prejudices and beliefs in the political arena. >> let me ask you. part of what you seem to be getting at is something that a lot of people have been worrying about. that you can rely on media for information that has been report or verified or just define it as a mechanism to get things out this. you seem to be drawing a parallel that they emerged in a way that people associated with true information and do all kinds of communication, chug
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bigotry. >> the onlien news economy, if you look at the famous war of the worlds broadcast which led to the deaths of actual people. not unlike the recent pizza debacle where people believed online fake news because it is carried by the media. social media and the way people interact with it is almost the same way that people reacted. the people were themselves masters of the media. >> such an interesting point. of course roosevelt is the one we think of. we don't always remember what came before. take listen to donald trump talking about how he uses social media. >> it's a modern form of communication. there is nothing to be ashamed of. it is where it's at.
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the fact i have such power with facebook, twitter, instagram, it helped me win where they spent much more money than i spent and i won. >> it is certainly true that did he that and didn't pay for tv ads. but he also uses that power to say things that you can't run a tv ad because of the standards used. >> yes. that's correct. if you think about it in the 1930s and 40s, there were wannabe people. father coughlin, moesby. i think most of your audience never heard of them. the reason is? and that's why we didn't have it
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happening in europe. >> you can always e-mail me at ari@msnbc.com or sign up for my news letter at arimelber.com. unpopular vote. let's play "hardball." good evening. when he came outside for a moment he briefly answered questions from reporters. one which of was about the reason terrorist attacks in europe and what it means for his immigration policy. >> i want you to rethink -- >> you know my

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