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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  November 22, 2017 4:00pm-5:00pm PST

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thought, the famous verizon ad. >> can you hear me now? good. >> can you hear me now? >> that's where we land. cell service needs to fall back. if people are using that trick to get off the phone with the president, that is amazing. >> works. >> liz, thanks for being on the show. this other guy, thank you for being on the show. that's our show sp. have a great thanksgiving friday. at 6:00 p.m., we have our speci special, "russia on trial," check that out. and "hardball" starts now. trump stands alone. let's play "hardball." good evening, i'm chris matthews up in boston. for weeks, republicans is have distanced themselves from roy moore. they've pulled endorsements and urged him to drop out. and many have said they believe his accusers. let's watch. >> do you believe these allegations to be true?
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>> i believe the women, yes. >> i am -- have no reason to doubt these young women. >> i think these charges are very serious. i think these accusers are very credible. >> you believe the women. you think that these are credible allegations, that he assaulted -- sexually assaulted a 16-year-old girl and sexually molested a 14-year-old girl? >> i do. i did not find his denials to be convincing at all. >> the evidence is becoming overwhelming, that he had a problem. >> i think the women's allegations have the ring of truth and this stuff sort of confirms the behavior in question. >> and then there's donald trump, the head of the party. president trump backed up the alabama senate candidate by raising questions about the timing of the accusations against him. >> if you look at what is really going on and you look at all the things that have happened over the last 48 hours, he totally denies it. he says it didn't happen. and, you know, you have to listen to him also.
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you're talking about he said 40 years ago, this did not happen. so, you know. and i do have to say, 40 years is a long time. he's run eight races and this has never come up. so 40 years is a long time. >> well, both new york tabloids ran with the same headline today in response to that performance. and politico reports the president has vents about moore's accusers for days, expressing skepticism about their account. quote, during animated conversations with senior republicans and white house aides, the president said he doubted the stories presented by moore's accusers and questioned why they were emerging now, just weeks before the election. according to two white house advisers and two other people familiar with the talks. the white house advisers said the president drew parallels between moore's predicament and the one he faced just over a year ago. nine women have made accusations against moore, most of whom were in their teens when the incidents occurred, though they vary by age and by circumstances. some say moore just pursued them
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for dates. others say he assaulted them. moore has denied them all. here are a few of those women in their own words. >> my mother went first, and then when i got up and went out, he grabbed my behind. just, hard. he grabbed it so hard that it was almost like fondling. like, it was such a hard -- like a -- i could even feel the dents of his fingers. >> mr. moore reached open and began groping me, him putting his hands on my breasts. i tried fighting him off while yelling at him to stop. but instead of stepping, he began grabbing my neck, attempting to force my head on to his crotch. >> he removed my clothing, he left the room and came back in wearing his white underwear. and he touched me over my clothing, what was left of it. and he, um, tried to get me to
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touch him as well. but i was a 14-year-old child trying to play in an adult's world and he was 32 years old. >> for more, i'm joined by "national post" reporter, robert costa, yamiche alcindor and peter baker, all msnbc contributors. let's go in that order. robert, i always count on you to give me a sense of trump, the man. why is trump the man defending roy moore, the man? this person? >> it's pure politics, chris. when you listen to insiders in the wlohite house, they say the have to get this tax bill through. and the president is haunted by these accusations he faced los angeles yelast year. so he doesn't want to wade into this national debate about sexual harassment, even though he knows that these women are making pretty credible accusations. so the white house feels politically boxed in and the president has chosen to make a political decision that puts him
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at odds with his own party and the congressional leadership. >> well, do you figure out based on the timing of this, if roy moore can win this fight, this special election, when would he take office? >> he would take office very soon after december 12th. >> so he might be a voter on the tax bill? >> he would. and that's the explanation coming from some white house officials. but there is a real divide in the course of my reporting, when i talk to senate republican sources and house republican sources. they say they don't want judge moore on capitol hill, because even if he would be a vote for taxes next year, they say long-term, he's a burden for the party in the 2018 midterms. >> let me go to yamiche on this. i've been thinking about this for the last couple of seconds, which is the poll numbers on the u.s. congress dreadful. because when they have an image of it, they have the leadership in mind. that's bad enough. if they have roy moore in mind, it will sink them even further. >> i think it will sink them even further, but this political calculation that president trump is making is one that is in some
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ways questionable, because when you have someone like mitch mcconnell saying, not only, i think, saying, yes, i believe the women, and i don't want roy moore here, even before all of these allegations, mitch mcconnell was going to have a really, really hard time convincingry moore to vote for any bill for the good of the party. now, whether or not he would vote for tax reform is one thing, but long-term, when republicans have to put together other things like health care or infrastructure bills, roy moore is not going to be somebody's vote you'll be able to whip by telling him you have to do what's best for the republican party. so i think there's something going on there. but i as agree with robert that president trump is haunted by the own allegations he has made in recent days. there have been stories asking, what about the women who said president trump was sexually inappropriate to them? will they have a second voice? so within the media and within the party and democrats, when you're interviewing them about roy moore, the question always goes back to president trump and why he was able to send political success while still having all these other women
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saying these things. >> peter baker, let me broaden this for a moment before we go further on the details. it seems to me by defending roy moore, president trump yields up, basically, forfeits any notion of being a moral arbitrator on any of these cases, including his predecessor, two or three before him, to bill clinton. that question came up thanks to kirsten gillibrand, the senator from new york. if he says roy's okay, does he have any say in any other case? it seems to me he doesn't. >> well, it's been very striking, of course, his own daughter, ivanka trump, said there's a special place in hell for people who molest children. and she obviously was talking about roy moore at that time. is he in fact being used by the democrat doug jones in his campaign ads against roy moore. her father taking a different position, basically saying, well, all you have is a he said/she said and it's 40 years ago and you have to listen to him as well as to the women. and you're right, it's a selective case. he tweeted out against al franken, the senator from
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minnesota. there was photographic evidence in that case. and what the white house would say is, look, al franken admitted what he did and therefore it was fair game for the president to talk about. but it does raise questions about when he's going to be a moral arbitrator, a leader of the country beyond a party figure. >> president trump called roy moore's opponent, doug jones, soft on crime. let's watch. >> i can tell you one thing for sure. we don't need a liberal person in there, a democrat, jones. i've looked at his record. it's terrible on crime. it's terrible on the border, it's terrible on the military. i'll tell you that we do not need somebody who's going to be bad on crime, bad on military, bad for the second amendment. >> bad on crime? for the record, jones is a former federal prosecutor who won convictions against two ku klux klan members for the 1963 bombing of the birmingham church that killed four young black girls. meanwhile, jones is making a
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provocative argument against moore in a new web video his campaign released just today. it's pretty powerful. let's watch. >> leigh corfman, beverly young nelson, debbie wesson gibson, gloria thacker deeson, gena richardson, wendy miller, kelly harrison thorpe, and the list is growing. they were girls when roy moore immorally pursued them. now they are women, witnesses to us all of his disturbing conduct. will we make their abuser a u.s. senator? >> let me go back to robert costa. if again, the man for understanding the president personally. do you think the president's squirming about this personally? and i know he's out there saying this is false testimony, it's political, held-timed for that. and you know he's argued that the timing is disturbing, but the charges in themselves seem very credible and they make this guy look like some character out of some horror movie.
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do you think trump is bothered to be on his side? >> those images, the statements of these women, it's troubling, it's emotional to see. sexual harassment is a tragedy for women. at the same time, we heard from president trump echoes the remarks of governor kay ivy of alabama, that they're trying to celebrate the growing referendum idea in alabama, that doug jones and other democrats are pushing and trying to separate that idea of making this a referendum on roy moore and make it about republican policies and republican politics. and that's the test case here in alabama. can the democrats score a win in the south by making this about politics and about the politics of people's personal choices, not just how they vote when they're on capitol hill. >> yamiche, it seems like they're trying to turn it into a british election, where you basically vote party no matter who the person is? >> i'll say that to someone who went to swing states in north
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carolina, to ohio, right after the "access hollywood" tape came out, i talked to so many republican women who said, yes, i don't like the fact that the president trump said this. i don't like the fact that then candidate trump was accused of being sexually inappropriate with women. but at the end of the day, i need republicans policies, i'm pro-life, i believe in the tax reform that they're going to have. i believe in the way they look at the world. and as a result, i'm going to go with the party. because i know if i put hillary clinton in there, she's going to do democratic things that i don't agree with. so there are women who made that political calculation, and that's why president trump won overwhelmingly white women, because they looked at the women that were accusing president trump of acting inprotoly and said, you know, i feel bad for you, but i'm going to go with my party. so president trump isn't doing anything that's atypical of republicans. it's how he got into office. >> well, allies for roy moore have offered some truly bizarre defenses. catch this. we've saved this. on monday, pastor phillip bennam
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offered perhaps the most ridiculous one yet. he said that moore dated younger girls for their purity. he also said that moore returned home in his 30s after serving in the military and going to law school and women his own age, moore's own age, were already married, so therefore, let's watch. >> many of the ladies that he possibly could have married were not available then. they were there are married. maybe somewhere. so he looked in a different direction. and always with the parents of young ladies. by the way, the lady that he's married to now, miss kayla, is a younger woman. he did that because, you know, there's something about the purity of a young woman. and there's something about, something that's good, that's true, that's straight. is it all right for a man who's 30 years old to date and court a young lady who is 14 years old
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with their parent's consent? is it or is it not? >> no. >> not at my house. no, it's not. not in the '80s. >> well, peter, i'm going to give you that one. i don't know what to say. i mean, that pablam he's giving people is so -- i don't know what -- what is it? what is the word? it's a terrible idea, that somehow that this guy can go for sex, basically, with 14-year-olds because the 25-year-olds are all taken and then he said he did it with their parent's consent. why doesn't he come up with this list of young women who were in their early teens at that time that did get his parent's consent. he's nooacknowledging all the charges can but saying it's okay because the guy was desperate. >> he's not disputing the facts, unlike roy moore who said it's not true. his defenders are saying, well, yeah, it could be true, and if it's true, it's okay, because it's not predatory, even if
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people today might look at it that way. it's an extraordinary rationalization. and the real question is whether that ise s res s res r s res res in alabama. i think party preferences tend to win out a lot of cases like this. it's not a choice between two republicans, it's a choice between a republican and a democrat. and sometimes people will hold their nose and vote for someone they see as flawed because of the policies they care about. >> i'm going to make a prediction right now. i predict that roy moore loses this race. i don't think alabama is going to put up with this stuff. thank you, robert costa, yamiche alcindor, and peter baker. coming up, the russian investigation and new information about an associate of michael flynn, general flynn now a subject of special council robert mueller's investigation. more coming, getting deeper, in russia. this as mueller may be zeroing in on trump's son-in-law, jared kushner. he looks like the next one to fall. that's ahead. plus, how did trump spend
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the day before thanksgiving? well, you'll see, tweeting of course, with another attack. this case again on the father of the ucla basketball player and a vulgar re-treat about hillary clinton, of course. and obama envy. president trump is taking every opportunity now to remind his base how much he wants to race a the accomplishments of his predecessor, even with regard to pardoning turkeys. and no opportunity is too small. finally, let me finish tonight with a day no one will ever forget. this is "hardball" where the action is. in every town, across america. small businesses show their love to you. with some friendly advice, a genuine smile and a warm welcome they make your town... well, your town. that's why american express is proud to be the founding partner of small business saturday. a day where you get to return that love, because shopping small makes a big difference. so, this saturday get up, get out, and shop small.
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presidential candidate? >> oh, i don't think so. i'm not sure that that's how it works anymore. but, you know, i think i bear the responsibility of -- for not succeeding. >> we'll be right back. it's open enrollment. time to open the laptop... ...and compare medicare health plans. why? because plans change, so can your health needs. so, be open-minded. look at everything-like prescription drug plans... and medicare advantage plans from private insurers. use the tools at medicare.gov. or call 1-800-medicare. open to something better? start today. ♪
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welcome back to "hardball." we already know that special counsel robert mueller has enough evidence to bring indictments into investigations against former national security adviser, michael flynn, and his son. now nbc news is reporting tonight that another flynn associate has become a third subject until mueller's probe of flynn. quote, federal investigators are zeroing in on bijan kian, a partner at the now-dissolved flynn intel group. that's according to three sources familiar with the probe who say a grand jury is expected to question some of those witness as soon as.
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suspected e-mail also showed kian was with flynn at a meeting in september of 2016, with pro-russian congressman, dana rohrabach rohrabacher, as msnbc previously reported. that meeting is under scrutiny by mueller's team. i'm joined now by the author of that report, julia ainsley of nbc muse and jessica woodruff is is reporter with the daily beast. so is this a gambino-style ro rollup where they'll start with the most tesirnlgier figures. >> we saw with this rick gates and paul manafort. rick gates was the business manager of paul manafort, his deputy, and bijan kian played a very spectacular role with michael flynn at the flynn intel group. he was arranging a lot of these meetings, the person out front
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shaking hands and arranging for him to meet people like dana rohrabacher. so now this is a point where mueller has not only questioned kian for information about flynn, but he's focusing specifically on him aon bringin witnesses before the grand jury in coming weeks. it tells us that mueller is following this strategy where he sort of circles everyone. he figures out who someone he tried to get to works with pb and gets to those people to get them to cooperate and tell them the whole story. >> is jared kushner next on the food chain? >> there's been a steady drum bate of reporting over the past few weeks. it seems we're hearing more and more about what kushner did and what he did not disclose in terms of his foreign contacts or outreach from russia. so it seems that mueller has a lot of information on him and he could be someone that he could go to next, especially as he works his way further inside this trump inner circle. >> well, jared kushner is also
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under more scrutiny, according to the "wall street journal." investigators are asking questions about kushner's interactions with foreign leaders during the presidential transition. the inquiry includes his meeting with the executive of a sanctioned russian baeng, as well as a request from israel, asking the trump team for help blocking a u.n. resolution. as we already know, kushner originally failed to disclose any foreign contacts on his security clearance form, which he called an administrative error. but kushner could also be a key part of a potential obstruction case. general mueller's prosecutors have asked witnesses detailed questions about mr. kushner's views of mr. comey and whether mr. kushner was in favor of firing him or had staked out a position. according to four people familiar with the matter, mr. kushner pushed for comey's firing with the president and his top advisers. so two things. kushner was involved with the russians. kushner was afraid of his involvement with the russians.
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kushner didn't like comey coming after his involvement with the russians. he tries to get rid of comey, gets the president to get rid of comey, both the obstruction piece and the collusion piece touch on jared kushner, the president's son-in-law. that's awful close to the nervous system of this president. >> this is a really stressful time to be jared kushner. and it's important to remember that the news that we're getting about michael flynn over the past few weeks also relates directly to jared kushner himself. during the transition period, according to reports, flynn, kushner, and sergey kislyak, the controversial russian ambassador to the united states had a meeting together that didn't get disclosed on that security clearance form. and in that meeting, it appears that there were conversations about setting up some sort of back-channel between trump world and russian leaders. and something really astonishing happened recently. and that is chuck grassley, who's the republican -- republican, conservative guy -- who heads the senate judiciary
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committee, actually released a letter where he said jared kushner failed to turn over e-mails to him for his committee's investigation, that involved the efforts to set up that back channel. so we have a u.s. senator on the record, saying, first, that kushner somehow was involved in communicates about a back channel, and second, that kushner wasn't completely forthcoming with that republican u.s. senator about those efforts. what that all means is that -- >> okay, what is unique -- what is wrong -- i'm sorry, betsy, what is wrong, legally -- what's illegal about a back channel? >> i think -- i can't necessarily speak to that. that's a complicated diplomatic issue. it's definitely outside of the norms of how the united states generally kentuckies these foreign policy matters. and of course, when we're talking about the mueller probe, what we have to remember is that first and foremost, it's a counterintelligence probe. it's looking at russian efforts to influence the united states. it's not primarily a criminal probe. so those counterintelligence
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matters relate directly to the way that powerful folks in the united states may try to communicate with powerful folks in the kremlin. additionally, of course, the major legal liability for kushner here is the fact that he did such a poor job disclosing all of these conversations when he was trying to get a security clearance to have access to even more classified and incredibly sensitive material. >> well, i'll start with julia on this. i know a lot about bobby kennedy. bobby kennedy had a back channel relationship who could have been kgb at the time. but that back channel is the way we got through the cuban missile crisis, because it was him who suggested that we deal with the turkey missiles and trading them from the cuban missiles. another case of nepotism, by the way, bobby kennedy. is it illegal to have a back channel? >> so we have to look lat what this back channel looks like. john kelly when he was dhs secretary came to kushner's defense earlier this year when it came out that kushner may
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have been trying to set up these back channels. he said, look, people have to do diplomacy in a number of ways. here's where it gets tricky. if there was a way for him to set up a back channel where it couldn't be secured, where things were either being traded quid pro quo or the u.s. didn't know about that or in a way this information wouldn't have been secure, in other words, the u.s. wouldn't know about its own diplomatic conversations, but another country like, say, russia could hear this if it perhaps happened at the russian consulate. we would be running into major national security risks and of course running into what could be illegal activity, if there's some sort of trading and selling off of u.s. foreign policy. it would be the content, not the back channel i.t. >> i think in the cold war sense, it was just an attempt to diffuse a possible con ton federation, a nuclear confrontation. thank you, julia ainsley and betsy woodruff, great reporting. next up, president trump is gearing up for thanksgiving by asking why people don't thank him enough.
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interesting. it's him, again. trump launched into a twitter tirade about those basketball players he helped free from china, calling one of their fathers an ungrateful fool. this is "hardball." and that's the president. where the action is. how do you chase what you love with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis? do what i did. ask your doctor about humira. it's proven to help relieve pain and protect joints from further irreversible damage in many adults. humira works by targeting and helping to block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to ra symptoms. humira has been clinically studied for over 20 years. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common, and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores.
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from capital one. now, i'm earning unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase i make. everything. what's in your wallet? i'm page hopkins and here's what's happening. u.s. and japanese naval ships searching the philippines seas for three service members missing after a u.s. navy plane crashed on its way to the ronald reagan aircraft carrier. eight others were rescued in good condition. gop texas congressman joe barton is responding to a nude photo that surfaced online. barton said he had consensual relationships with mature adult women while separated from his wife. workers are inflating the iconic balloons for the macy's
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thanksgiving day parade. security will be extra tight at the annual tradition this year. and now we take you back to "hardball." welcome back to "hardball." on the eve of thanksgiving, as families gather together to give thanks for all that they have, the president of the united states decided to launch another series of twitter attacks. and today, he decided to continue a fight he's had with lavar ball, the father of a ucla basketball player, arrested in china for shoplifting. ball has refused to thank the president for his role in orchestrating the release of his son and two other players. here he is this past monday. >> it wasn't like he was in the u.s. and said, okay, there's three kids in china. i need to go over there and get him. just because people say things, you know, it's supposed to be true. like, hey, i stop them from serving ten years. maybe we was doing some talking
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with some other people before we even got there. >> okay, anyway, a worthy opponent. trump didn't seem to appreciate that, because at 5:30 in the morning, the president tweeted, "it wasn't the white house, it wasn't the state department, it wasn't father lavar's so-called people on the ground in china that got his son out of a long-term prison sentence. it was me. too bad, lavar is just a poor man's version of don king, but without the hair." he then went on to call ball a, "ungrateful fool." for me, i'm joined by a.b. stoddard and jonathan capehart, msnbc contributor. jonathan, why does the president punch down? why does he get another ego guy like himself, who nobody ever heard of, and pitch up a holiday-long fight with this guy? >> well, that's a good question. the president always punches down. let's think about this for a second, chris. we have the president of the
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united states, who is engaged in a fight with a private citizen, with an american citizen. you know, we used to have presidents who used to rise above these things, who would leld such insults as the interview that lavar ball gave on cnn, just let that slide, because that sort of thing is beneath -- should be beneath the president, should be beneath the office of the presidency. and yet, what we have here, chris, are two big egos in the age of trump, where the president feels that it's okay to punch down and zbeget into a very public fight with a private citizen. and where that private citizen sees no problem whatsoever or at all with engaging in a fight with the president of the united states. and one more thing, chris. what we have here are two people, clearly, for whom everything is about themselves. the president is getting into this fight, because he feels personally insulted by lavar ball. and then you've got lavar ball, who's someone who from what i understand, is very savvy when
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it comes to creating publicity for himself. and he's got a business of his own. and this helps him. >> yeah, exactly! a.b., i think if the guy had the intention of sparking up a feud that would make him on the level of the president of the united states, he pulled it off! and the fact that president trump understands what the guy was up to, he compared him to don king, one of the great promoters of all time in boxing, he knew what the guy was up to, and he played his game. i don't get this? why does he want to have a -- unless there's a race piece to this, where he wants to have tan african-american opponent wherever he can find one. that would be another way of looking at it. your thoughts? >> well, there's a couple of aspects to this. one, president trump is energized by grievance and by fighting. so that's just -- if someone throws him some bait, he's going to come at it. number two, as jonathan points out, this guy is a provocateur and a self-promoter. and if you watched the entire interview the other night, he's a serious jerk.
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so it provided -- it's not only that president trump takes the bait, but he became a good sort of foil for the president, because the president is really trying to, as ---ion, ioyou kne tweeted again about nfl players, sort of speak to the sense to his voters that these are privileged, entitled athletes and they're doing the wrong thing. and so if you -- if you have the combination of the culture war over nfl players, and this guy who sort is willing to set off president trump and be really rude about it, it was kind of the perfect storm, right? and then at the same time, president trump has a theme that we've heard often. even back to the campaign before. he was a president, that he doesn't get enough credit for things. and he likes to be given credit for things. and so, he anticipated that he wouldn't be thanked by the basketball players. remember the tweet from a week ago, i bet they don't even thank me. then they thanked him, he sort
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of calmed down, and we're back where we are. i really hope that father ball doesn't continue this feud, because donald trump will stay with it. >> the president also re-tweeted a london-based pro-trump broadcaster who took a swipe at mr. ball and hillary clinton. the trump supporter wrote, "the undespera ungratefulness is something i've never seen before. if you get someone's son out of prison, he should be grateful to you, period. i don't care. if hillary got my kid out of prison, as much as i hate the woman, i.d. thank her corrupt --" well, you fill in the bank. jonathan, this does seem to be -- it does seem to be the president's wheelhouse. if you take the take the knee stigt, t fight, the statue fight, he does want to aggravate this ethnic fight we have in this country and widen the gap as wide as he can get it that day. that day, he wants it to be wide. >> look, chris, to pick up on what a.b. was talking about, this isn't just a fight with privileged athletes or
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privileged nfl players. this is the president of the united states, who always seems to find time to pick fights with african-americans. that we cannot look away from the race angle that's at play here. the president, for one reason or another, things that, and we've seen it work, that his base likes the fact that he is standing up to people, who they think are benefiting from a system that's been rigged against them. and that what better way to feed, to stoke that grievance that a.b. was talking about, and i agree 100%, but what better way to stoke that grievance than to pick a fight with african-americans, whether they're african-american men who may or may not be jerks like lavar ball, or like colin kaepernick's who's taking a knee and standing on a principle, or jahmell hill who had so-called the temerity to criticize the
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president of the united states. this works for his base. but unfortunately what works for his tiny base is really horrible and detrimental to the rest of us in the united states. >> it's so rich that he mentioned don king. the ultimate promoter of boxing fights. here's trump, who loves to be promoted. he promotes himself, in fight after fight after fight, to keep his core together. >> and don king is a friend, supposedly, of donald trump's. but obviously, the tweet was incredibly personal, incredibly ugly, and he called him an ungrateful fool. and that's why i'm worried that lavar ball will punch bag. >> okay, great. remember what p.t. barnum said, if you want a crowd, start a fight. trump does it every day, he starts a fight, and we pay attention to him, unfortunately. thank you, a.b. stoddard, happy thanksgiving and also to my friend, longtime buddy, jonathan capeha capehart. thank you, sir. up next, it certainly seems like president trump is fixated
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on his predecessor, barack obama. yesterday, we got a stark reminder of that. even at the turkey pardoning ceremony, trump was talking about erasing obama's legacy in that regard. you're watching "hardball." statins lower cholesterol, but can also lower your body's natural coq10. qunol helps restore this heart-healthy nutrient with 3x better absorption. qunol has the #1 cardiologist recommended form of coq10 qunol, the better coq10. wthe phone line can be a lifeline to the outside world. i'm sorry i just can't understand you.
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welcome back to "hardball." president trump never misses a chance to undermine his predecessor. yesterday at the annual thanksgiving turkey pardon, of all things, trump, langsialongs first lady melania trump and barron, spared the lives of two turkeys, wishbone and drumstick. but the president couldn't resist the urge to get political once again, taking a shot at his predecessor, barack obama. >> drumstick and his friend, wishbone, will live out their days at gobbler's rest. beautiful place. there they'll join tator and tot, the two turkeys pardoned last year by president obama.
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as many of you know, i have been very active in overturning a number of executive actions by my predecessor. however, i have been informed by the white house counsel's office that tator and tot's pardons cannot, under any circumstances, be revoked. so we're not going to revoke them. >> well, let's bring in the "hardball" roundtable. we need heavyweights for this topic. margaret carlson is a columnist with the daily boose. howard fineman is global editorial director for the "huffington post." i think you can handle this one. and franchesca chambers is white house correspondent for the "daily mail." of that order, what do we make of trump in this reach, this stranged, strained attempt to take something that's supposed to be felicitous and cheerful and turn it into a cheap little job on obama? margaret? >> the turkey pardoning is a ceremony that allows you to riff a bit. however, the unifying theory, if
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there is one, of the trump administration, is to undo everything he can that obama has done. and so, he has to insert this into a pleasant holiday tradition, because he can't resist this impulse, this impulse drives everything. it's why we have, you know, an epa, we have scott pruitt, who's reversing everything that obama did, so that coal is becoming the official fuel of the united states of america. the agriculture reversing everything. it is what trump wants to do. and so it -- he -- he's standing there and it just flies into his mind. and when those cameras are rolling, lroll rolli rolling, he can't stop himself. >> howard, i'm wondering if he's not being political here. could it be in his interests -- i watch politicians these days. they have to act like they have no friends on the other side of the aisle, because their friendship is for their contributors. they give their friendship to
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their contributors. so they have to like the friends they get money from and they have to hate the enemies of their contributors. so it's important for him to be seen as somebody that has nothing but contempt and hatred for obama, for his own political well-being. and i think it's sick, but i think it is going on in politics today. >> i think you're absolutely right. and at the risk of sounding like i'm buttering up the host of the show, i think that's brilliant. i hadn't heard it expressed that way. there's no event too triviale not to be politicized, and politicized for the reason that you say. which is, we're on our side, they're on their side. we're going to see that playing out at thanksgiving dinners all over the country tomorrow. the democratic congressional campaign fund put out a bulletin for everybody about how to argue with your republican relatives tomorrow. that's the world that donald trump came into. it's the one he's exaggerating and accentuating. and by the way, that's the way he's going to play it down in
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alabama. >> franchesca, what do you make about this turkey, this turkey talking about turkeys? i mean, i'm sorry, i shouldn't say that. but there's a turkey aspect to the president's behavior. who would talk about turkeys with such enthusiasm as political pawns? >> well, he was riffing, as margaret was saying. and i think that he thought that he was being funny, kind of making a funny joke about his predecessor. but, of course, for people who support those policies that barack obama put in place, that donald trump is now revoking, it's not as funny to say that. but one has to wonder if the white house was breathing a deep sigh of relief when he didn't bring up other potential pardon jokes that he could have made yesterday. there are some other folks that everyone is wondering, people that he could potentially pardon in his administration and i think there was definitely a sense of whether he would make some jokes either about that or about his other favorite person who's a democrat, hillary clinton, and i think there was a
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real question whether he would bring her up instead of barack obama and a potential pardon for her. >> well, back to my conversation with howard, i really do think he has to make it clear that he hates hillary. he has to make it clear all the time, because his people hate hillary. >> anyway, late-night comedian stephen colbert couldn't resist making his own political joke about trump's reference of revoking political pardons of tators and tot. >> because, if they could, i would eat tator and make tot watch. you're next, tot. >> mm-hmm. >> i'm eating tator because he talked to mueller. >> franchesca, howard, and margaret, in that order, what do we make of the fact that it's hard to tell satire from reality. it's getting more tricky to discern the difference. >> i think the late-night comedians are having quite a ball, as you could see there, with this event. but, you know, i do want to point something else out. the other reason that president
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trump might have brought up president barack obama yesterday is looking back on the previous year's event, there was some speculation that president obama took a slap at donald trump in his final turkey pardoning. he mentioned one nation for everyone and how we should be a divided society and we need to move forward after this past election. and there was some questions about that. so i'm also wondering if that was in president trump's mind, because he has a very long memory, as we know, and likes to talk about the election quite often. >> well, you couldn't be more opposite than what trump did in his pardoning, than what obama said and what trump said. >> he's got a whole -- chris, this guy has a whole castle full of bank woes ghosts. there are people who haunt him, and i think somewhat guiltily in his own mind, about his -- where he is and how he got there and who he ran over there to get there on the way. and he'll run back over barack obama every time he can and the same with hillary clinton. his mind is full of those people
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who challenge him. i've never seen -- and i've covered a lot of presidents, as have you. i've never seen the mix of egotism and paranoia that this guy displays. . a and as you said, there's no event too trivial for him to bring that up. it's inescapable. every minute of the waking day for him. >> it could be in the middle of the night subway ride from somewhere dark, deep into queens, on his way to manhattan, and he's not quite there yet. anyway, the roundtable is sticking with us. up next, these impede people will give me some scoops, three of them, that you'll be talking about all weekend as you're eating your cold turkey on saturday. anyway, you're watching "hardball."
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a programming note now about this friday, november 24th, the day after thanksgiving. we'll be back on the air with a special edition of "hardball." president trump: in his own words. anyway, we'll examine whether trump's delivered on the promises he's made, take a look at his trouble with the truth, and discuss his fixation with his predecessor, barack obama. that's this friday, black friday, the day after thanksgiving. we'll be right back. sband, not just being in the military, but at home. she thinks she's the boss. she only had me by one grade. we bought our first home together in 2010. his family had used another insurance product but i was like well i've had usaa for a while, why don't we call and check the rates? it was an instant savings and i should've changed a long time ago. there's no point in looking elsewhere really. we're the tenneys and we're usaa members for life. usaa. get your insurance quote today.
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well, what are you doing o take care otomorrow -10am? but... staff meeting. 3:45? tai chi. 6:30? sam's baseball practice. you are busy. wouldn't it be great if you had investments that worked as hard as you do? yeah. introducing essential portfolios the automated investing solution. we're back with the "hardball" roundtable. margaret, tell me something i don't know. >> so, chris, it's a happy thanksgiving day for big agro business, cargill and butterball, thanks to donald trump, who is punishing the small farmers who voted for him by taking away their protections that, by the way, obama had
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given him. >> wow -- >> had given them. had given all of the small growers. >> chris, the whole sexual harassment story is just beginning on capitol hill, as you all can imagine. and one reason is that secret list of $15 million worth of payments to various staffers on the hill. many of them, we presume, for sexual harassment claims. senator kerstin gillibrand, who's really taken the lead on this issue, is pushing now and is gaining support for a measure that would require that list to be made public. and all future payments to be made public. that's going to be a focus of this debate heading forward into next year. >> thank you, howard. franchesca? >> all right. well, next week, ivanka trump, the first daughter and also a senior white house adviser, will be heading to india to represent the white house at the global entrepreneurship summit in hader abad. and this year it will focus on women, women in the workforce, she'll be on two panels and be
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giving a keynote speech at that summit and i'm also going with her. so i'll be reporting live from there. >> thank you so much, margaret carlson, howard fineman and franchesca chambers. when we return, let me finish tonight with a day that no one will ever forget. you're watching "hardball." (avo) when you have type 2 diabetes, you manage your a1c, but you also have a higher risk of heart attack or stroke. non-insulin victoza® lowers a1c, and now reduces cardiovascular risk. victoza® lowers my a1c and blood sugar better than the leading branded pill. (avo) and for people with type 2 diabetes treating cardiovascular disease, victoza® is now approved to lower the risk of major cardiovascular events such as heart attack, stroke, or death. and while it isn't for weight loss, victoza® may help you lose some weight. (avo) victoza® is not for people with type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis.
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let me finish tonight with a day no one will ever forget. that other november 22nd, the one in 1963. it was a day that seemed to separate two realities, the life before and the troubled world since of vietnam and watergate and this gray, grinding division running through life ever since. i spent that afternoon watching walter cronkite give us the news flash from dallas, the news that
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would change everything, it seemed. i watched him on the other networks tell the story of the new frontier and everything that was now lost. we never quite recovered, did we? and as i write in "bobby kennedy college a raging spirit," he changed after dallas. he decided to spend his later years, especially after dallas, tending to their victims, to lives overlooked, and to those discarded. and so he ended up giving us a model that villains create their own hell here on earth. if we want to do some good, we should work to heal the divide. we can do that, of course. if you want to be good, that's what we should do. and that's why i spent these years digging for and discov discovering we need ways to not only recover, but raise again
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the spirit we had before. and that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us tonight. wishing you and yours a very happy thanksgiving. all"all in with chris hayes" sts right now. tonight on "all in" -- >> the rumor mill was that roy moore likes young girls. >> roy moore is in trouble, despite an almost endorsement from the president of the united states. >> roy moore denieied it, that' all i can say. >> tonight, the state of the race in alabama, and the president's political calculation. >> you have to do what you have to do. >> then, the son-in-law now being investigated for his contacts with foreign leaders. >> i had no improper contacts. >> plus, the chef who is cooking 40,000 meals in puerto rico. and the president who said he had a busy day, then went golfing. >> golf, golf, golf, golf, more, more. >> "all in" starts right now. >> i want more.

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