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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  November 24, 2017 6:00pm-7:00pm PST

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i mean, even though prosecutor doesn't have to act politically, that's where he's going to be headed. >> thanks so much for being here. that is "all in" for this evening. we'll be back on monday. good night. happy friday. still full? welcome to a special edition of the rachel maddow show tonight. a few days after the presidential election in 2016, something quite unexpected happened. planned parenthood started getting a flood of donations from mike pence, from all over the country, mike pence was donating, the new vice president elect. once it became clear that republicans would soon control the white house in both cam beers of congress, americans felt an urge to donate to civil rights and reproductive health organizations like the aclu and planned parenthood and when people started donating a good number of them did so under the
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name mike pence. it was just a little dig at the very anti abortion conservative in coming vice president. please send certificate of receipt for my donation to the indiana state house. when liberals and democrats try to figure out what to do next in the aftermath of the 2016 election, troll mike pence was a funny election. a huge influx of people chose to donate to progressive rights protection groups that presumably would be working over time in the election. by the end of the transition and start of the new administration, the next widely chosen option would be for people to march. in new york city and washington d.c. made national news for days in part for their sheer size. women's marches turned up in pockets in the country all over
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the place, places like jackson, mist mist. or fairbanks, alaska. almost 2,000 people braving snow and sleet. thousands of people took over the capital building in utah in the snow. monday after inauguration. nobody really knew at the time that energy would become after the women's marches were over, whether it would be harnessed and turned into something tangible and long-lasting but those marches definitely helped shift the national tone in that direction and then the first big electoral test of that was in the commonwealth of virginia. >> jennifer loves a challenge. she was one of the first african american women at vmi first in her family to graduate from college and law school and in january, this public defender announced her candidacy for a house seat that covers part of prince william in stafford. she had concerns about policies she viewed as anti women.
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>> i said, you know, why not me and if not now when? >> my youngest elyce was just 7 months old. elyce was inspired by alice island. it is vietnamese for bright bell and that was inspired by the liberty bell. her name is to ring the bell of liberty and champion for all. i made the decision to run when she was about a month old. i had given a very aspirational name to this tiny baby and i couldn't rest upon her shoulders that responsibility. i had to stand up and fight for those values myself. i had a brother who struggled with alcoholism and ptsd for decades. i lost him in march, two weeks after i announced for this. it was devastating, and hard to go on, but there are others like him and i intend to make sure
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that they have more chances than he had. >> the women featured in that footage there, jennifer carl, kathy tran, they ended up being some of the first time candidates in virginia who flipped 15 seats in virginia's house of delegates from republican to democrat. it's been decades since democrats flipped more than one seat in that legislature and they just flipped 15 in one night at least. it includes the first latino women, the first asian american women in the house of delegates and the first openly transgendered person to sit in any state legislature. that night they won the governorship in virginia and new jersey. and then a week later democrats in oklahoma flipped a very unlikely seat. they flipped a state senate seat that had gone for trump by 40 points. the woman that won it is a democrat, a woman and mother of
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three and she's 26 years old, and she's openly guy. hello, oklahoma. right now democratic women are having a moment which is remarkable given what happened to the first female presidential candidate a year ago. >> one of the things you deal with in a surprisingly straightforward way is people are obsessed with your human nature. >> yes. >> everything from sort of deep thing that you point out, which is that people needed to be told again and again why, why truly do you want to be president when nobody ever asked marco rubio or ted cruz that question in exactly that same way but also, the really human stuff. this is what you write in the opening of chapter five in the book. what i ate, who did my hair and makeup, what my mornings were like. it may seem strange but i get asked about these things constantly.
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philippe reines, who played trump in the debate prep sessions has my favorite explanation why. we are like pandas. you amarveling at people having that interest but concede you learned that's what people want to know. chapter five of the book is literally, here is what time i get up. yes, i hit the snooze button. yes, i exercise. yes, i love my husband. here is mystery novels i like. yes, i like hot sauce. do you wish people didn't want to know you in that way and down why they do? >> well, you know, i've stopped asking both questions because i've concluded that it's just a part of our lives now. and i think i was slow to accept that and i believe that i'm pretty straightforward and pretty ordinary and most of my
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human existence and so i think, though, that people were a little bit intrigued, maybe even obsessed because of when i burst into the public awareness, you know. bill was the first baby boomer president. i was the first professional wife first lady, and, you know, there was just this curiosity and i said many times before i became like a national war shop test. you see what you want to see in you. but i wanted it in this book because it is true people ask me these questions all the time and i thought well, you know what? i want to embrace it and go ahead and tell you what i had for breakfast and all the rest of it and maybe it will give people a little bit of satisfaction they know me better than they thought they did. >> do you feel like it's that
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sort of interest and that sort of almost that sort of no win situation about your privacy? is something that is inherent -- that any woman who runs for president is going to face? is it inherently gender dynamic going forward? did you face it more than anybody else because you were the one trying to break the glass ceiling twice? >> i think there is a lot of truth to that. i think that just being a woman at that high level of politics is still so unusual and people are sorting it out. i have some fascinating statistics in there about how there is a big difference between democrats and republicans in terms of wanting to see a woman be president. lots of good research that i put into the book about how difficult it is because as a man gets more professionally successful, he becomes more likable and people i really
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wanted and talk about this because i hope through my experience and trying because also in that chapter i have and sexism and i say look, it's not just about me. there is that thing, i ran for the senate elected twice. i don't know how people can get to know you and respect you. because we never had a woman president, the barrier is so high. that glass ceiling is so hard and now that some of the potential 2020 candidates are starting to get public attention, they are getting hit from both the left and the right and sometimes when it comes from the left, you're not sure whether it's a russian pretending to be an american on the left or not.
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so i want to raise the visibility of these issues so that if women run for president in 2020 or 2024, whenever it might happen, you know, more americans will say hey, you know, maybe i should actually listen to her and see what she has to say rather than say i don't like her hair or why is she wearing that color. the kinds of things that get in the way of giving women candidates the serious consideration that we deserve. >> i hear your optimism about how that can get better. >> i hope so. >> by talking about it and naming it you give people away to at least discuss it and maybe combat it. i also feel like the sexism that you faced as a political barrier in 2016 was considerably worse than the sexism you faced as a barrier in 2008 and in 2016 you got further but i feel like what i saw directed at you as a public figure was more
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rhetorically violent than what i saw eight years earlier, which implies to me, maybe that's the general election versus the democratic primary but i like to think things get better over time, too, and i don't see that as having happened. >> i think there were several different conditions that had to be dealt with for the first tmem the internet was going but social media was not unleashed in '08 like 2016. i ran against someone who demeaned women, degraded them, attacked them and again, not just me but ms. universe contestants and republican women that dared to run against him and interviewers who question him. it was so rhetorically vile, what he said about so many women
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that was some type of restraint. i feel like in '08, there was a lot of it. it was out there. by years that followed. i thought okay, people are coming to grips with the fact that you don't talk about women like that. you may think it but you don't talk about it anymore. you have to try to give lip service to women being treated equally. trump threw that out the window. >> you think he changed the weather? he changed what was possible in -- >> i think he -- >> in the american -- >> he gave permission for people to be much more sexist and ma much more generalized hatred of women. for me, i was taken aback by some of what he would say and the fact that people would vote for him including women after the hollywood access tape. it just had a different feel to
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it. so yeah, i think he was in large measure the determining factor that made it so much worse in 2016. hillary clinton speaking very bluntly there about who made things worse and how. former attorney general eric holder has some thoughts on that, too. that's next. statins lower cholesterol,
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it was 2010. i was in alaska. lisa lost the primary and went to win it by a write in
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candidate. which is nuts for a senate race. in the middle of the nuttiness i went to alaska to cover the race and there unexpectedly in the street in anchorage is where i learned any political conversation with a stranger at any point might veer into in a sense about eric holder. you have to be ready for it at any time. >> eric holder and we disagree. >> why is that? >> we're anti gun attorney general country has ever had. >> what has he done against guns? >> what hasn't he done against guns? let's ask that question. let's look at his voting record. >> eric holder wasn't an elected official. >> all i'm asking is look at what he's done with obama. >> what has he done on guns that you're upset about? >> i honestly i'm not -- i don't
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know enough about him to answer that truthfully. >> can i ask why you're upset about eric holder? >> because he's anti gun. >> what has he done that's anti gun? >> what? >> i just know he's anti gun. >> look at his press releases and where he's coming from. >> about what? >> anything -- >> that was in alaska in 2010. eric holder, the nation's first african american attorney general had only been serving since the previous year but by 2010 he was the object of or nate fantasies but people that were really invested in hating him for things he hadn't done. eric holder served from 2009 to 2015 where the republican controlled senate confronted to swear in loretta lynch. eric holder served for 12 years in the justice department's public integrity unit before becoming a superior court judge in d.c. and u.s. attorney in
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d.c. and deputy attorney general and then becoming attorney general. since leaving office he returned to private practice. tonight he's here for the first live tv interview since president trump was sworn in office. thank you for being here. >> good to be here. >> have you seen that clip before? >> i have seen that clip. i saved it. i saw it on youtube and watch later, i watch it every now and again. >> i wonder if now that you are no longer the lightning rod you once were, do you miss that or get satisfaction from the hay trade that you attracted? >> not really. actually, it was something that baffled me. i never understood that piece you showed, what was the nature of and the depth of the negative feelings that i generated in people on the other side. i never quite understood that. >> in your time as attorney general all those years it didn't become more clear?
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>> no, no, never did. i said things in support of the program of the president but there was political washington and people like that had for me and, you know, i'm not totally sure what that was about. >> there had been -- by the time you were sworn in there had been 82 attorneys general? >> 81. i was the 82nd. >> 82nd. so 80 of them, 79 of them had been white men. >> right. >> alberto gonzalez had a term as attorney general that didn't end well. janet reno was the only woman that served as attorney general before you and you're the first african american man to serve. the only that i've seen directed a public official so divorced from that public official's record other than to a president was against janet reno and my theory about that is the nation's top law enforcement officer is someone who evokes a
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different kind of emotional reactir reaction and it's therefore a hard place to be first. >> yeah. >> to break in any sort of barrier. >> the attorney general sits at the conjunction of law and policy and the justice department is in so many parts of so many people's lives from national security things to civil rights, voting that you are a presence in a way that other cabinet members are not. that's a reason perhaps i could ingender those negative feelings people saw me as rep sresentati for some, for some, not all, there were probably racial issues. >> the attorney general of the united states is often a lightning rod for criticism of the united states. eric holder understood that to be part of the gig. now, though, we got that gig inverted. we're now the attorney general
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is lightning rod for criticism from the president, not for the president. more ahead. stay with us. my dad's.
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and this president and the republican congress are making a bad situation even worse. they won't tell you that their so called "tax reform" plan is really for the wealthy and big corporations, while hurting the middle class. it blows up the deficit and that means fewer investments in education, health care and job creation. it's up to all of us to stand up to this president. not just for impeachable offenses, but also to demand a country where everyone has a real chance to succeed. join us. your voice matters.
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we need to be ready for my name's scott strenfel and r i'm a meteorologist at pg&e. we make sure that our crews as well as our customers are prepared to how weather may impact their energy. so every single day we're monitoring the weather, and when storm events arise our forecast get crews out ahead of the storm to minimize any outages. during storm season we want our customers to be ready and stay safe. learn how you can be prepared at together, we're building a better california. is this january, cory booker became the first sitting quite senator to testify against another sitting u.s. senator. >> i know that some of my many colleagues aren't happy i'm breaking with senate tradition to testify on the nomination of
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one of my colleagues but i believe why perhaps all of my colleagues in the senate, in the choice between standing with senate norms or standing up for what my conscious tells me is best for our country, i will always choose conscience and country. >> that senator who cory booker was breaking president for in the united states senate, it was republican senator jeff sessions of alabama. he was a senate back bencher, a district court judge failed years before after accusations of racism against him. session was never a particularly senior senator or particularly influential senator but the hard line nature of his views did stand out over time. not just against illegal immigration but against immigration. not just in favor of the drug war but wanting one specifically against people who smoked pot. that made him a favorite of the hard line part of the american conservative media.
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he then became the first u.s. senator to endorse donald trump for president. and then once trump was president, sessions became the nation's attorney general. now jeff sessions' days may conceivably be numbered even there as every day spenpresents new opportunity to pick a fight. former attorney general eric holder explains why that dynamic might be something dangerous. >> in terms of the department for a national security agency, which in many ways it is, i've always wondered if it fits the line of national security policy making in the sense that it's less partisan than other types of domestic policy, what i mean by that is in my job i'm often looking back into sometime in the last couple of generations, looking for historical contests for things happening now and
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public officials are national security advisors. i often have to look up with their partisan affiliation is because it's just often not that important and there is a certain continuity in national security policy that transcend partisan wins. is that also true at justice? >> yes. justice department officials have gotten in trouble, attorney generals who got in trouble when they have forgotten that the justice department is different from other cabinet agencies. i remember senator lahey said during confirmation, you're not the secretary of justice. you're the attorney general of the united states and there has to be a wall between the justice department and the white house even though you're a part of administration. put kind of an interesting thing between me and a president who i was a friend with, certain things we couldn't discuss and certain things we didn't discuss but i think that's an appropriate way for an attorney general to think of himself or herself and it's an appropriate way for the justice department to be run. >> is there more discontinuity
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between jeff, the justice department under jeff sessions and the justice department under president obama than there has been between previous administrations? >> i'm looking from outside but sure seems that way to me. there have been statements that this attorney general has made, attorney general sessions has made. the interactions he had with the white house and inconsistent with i think the way in which i conducted myself as attorney general and frankly the way in which my predecessors, many predecessors conducted themselves, certainly, the berating that he reportedly took by the president is totally inconsistent with my experience and again, i think inconsistent with all the previous attorney generals that i'm aware of. >> is that just a matter of personality and washington personal drama or do you think that there is national consequence of risk associated with that strange thing that we saw unfold with the president beraiding his attorney general?
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>> i think that actually worries me because i think it betray as lack of understanding what the attorney general is supposed to be. you can't go at the ag that way. if you understand the independent role with the administration. there are things an attorney general is going to do that the president isn't going to agree with and the president is going to suck it up and say the ag has the responsibility to enforce the laws and has national security responsibilities and he's an independent actor in the way other cabinet officials are not. >> unless the president doesn't treat him that way. >> unless the president doesn't treat him that way. history has shown us that when that wall is too low, that's when justice departments get in trouble during the nixon years, during the bush years when you have white house contacts with the justice department and channels that are not approved. >> what's the correct for that when it goes back? >> resignations, investigations,
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public outcries, you know, there are really no formal things that condone -- ultimately impeachment of an attorney general something along those lines but it really is a question of having a vibrant press focused on these issues and the american people keeping track of what is going on between doj and the white house. >> a vibrant press last line of defense. bother rick holher rick holic h warned about shifting norms under president trump affecting our government's institutions. insider information to offer on that front from clinton and that's coming up next. stay with us.
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. you said it seems defense secretary jim mattias may be operating as defense secretary and secretary of state. you're the highest profile we had. rex tillerson is among the lowest, certainly the lowest in modern times and advocated a cut to the agency and left jobs unfilled as you said today and told state department staff that his biggest goal for the state department is efficiency and they stopped doing daily press briefings. given the risk of nuclear war with north korea and diplomatic challenges we got around the country and around the world, why do you think they are
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hollowing out the state department? >> i think they came in with preexisting conceptions about the state department and about diplomacy that were not particularly well-founded. not that you don't want to be more efficient. i had a process to make sure we became more efficient but they came in with a bias against diplomats and diplomacy. the good news, rachel, the budget that tillerson has been promoting has been rejected in the senate appropriations committee on a bipartisan basis. the members of the senate said look, we traveled the world. we know what our diplomats do on the front lines and we are not going to give you a 30% cut and they basically came up with about the same amount of money. so the congress is even recognizing that there is no strategy. there is no real plan. what i hear from inside the department because i still have
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a lot of communication coming to me is that there is a very small group of people around tillerson, none of them experience diplomats that he has brought in to be his palace guard so to speak. they don't even reach out into the state department to talk to the people who have studied north korea for years. so they are not getting the expertise and experience that is still at the state department -- >> the destainful. >> i think they are destainful. i think they don't know what they don't know to be honest. i think they had views that were super official and secretary tillerson was a chief executive officer and you have a different and a really complex place. it's about a lot of things that people in the state department
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had experience with and that we should be brought to the table and listened to, which i don't think is happening. >> do you think that it was inherently a bad idea to take somebody who had been a lifer at exxon, somebody who only worked at exxon to put him immediately in charge of diplomacy and the state department. when you were secretary of state in 2011, rex tillerson went to vladimir putin's house on the black sea to celebrate exxon and russia signing a half trillion dollar oil deal which is the biggest oil deal in the history of oil. >> right. >> putin later awarded him the russian order of friendship when another part of that deal closed. was he a strange choice for the job as being the ceo of exxon inappropriate experience to bring to the job he's trying to do now? >> it's very limited experience. i think there have been in our past people with extensive business experience, ceo
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positions, other kinds of private sector work that i believe could have gotten into this position and had a better understanding of what is required in the 21st century. i don't know that he was a particularly bad choice from the very beginning. i mean, i didn't know anything about him other than what you said basically, but he's never reached out to anybody. he's never asked people, you know, there used to be a tradition republican, democratic administrations you would come in and the prior secretaries of state would get together and have a dinner and talk and often times, you would be on the other end of a phone call saying what did you deal with on this or can you tell me more about that? i've talked to a few of the younger secretaries of state still around and nobody has heard anything, whether they were republican or democrat. >> you haven't had any
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communication with them? >> none. i met them at the inauguration lunch and that was it and then you got somebody like steve bannon who clearly is welding influence from the outside who recently just spewed contempt about some excellent american public servants including two prior republican secretaries of state and one prior republican national security advisor. so the attitude was so negative and, you know, why take a job that you're not willing to really dive into and learn about and you come in with preconceptions and you have a model that you're trying to put on top of a institution that has so much inherent strength. does it have problems? everything in government does. that's not a big surprise. not to want to learn. i kept waiting for the ah-ha moment where you hear the
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secretary actually called in people and said hey, tell me what i don't know. tell me what i need to know. let's listen, but from what i hear, that doesn't happen and in fact there is a concerted effort to prevent that from happening. kimchi bbq. amazing honky tonk? i can't believe you got us tickets. i did. i didn't pay for anything. you never do. send me what i owe. i got it. i mean, you did find money to buy those boots. are you serious? is that why you don't like them? those boots could make a unicorn cry. yeah, tears of joy. the bank of america mobile banking app. the fast, secure and simple way to send money. iton the only bed that sadjusts on both sides to your ideal comfort your sleep number setting. does your bed do that? right now save 50% on the ultimate limited edition bed. ends monday. visit for a store near you.
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here is my question for you, having been through your own particular version of the trump ringer, the political opponent, do you have any advice for his staff? >> well, this is a man who
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engages in humiliation and domination as a tactic of control and he acted out in the national stage first in the republican primary and continuing into the general election. and i think for a lot of people watching, the public process, it was hard to turn away from. you haven't seen somebody at that high of a level aiming for a job that's the most important in the world who behaves like that, who says what he says, who delights in mocking people or attacking people. so i think that's pretty deeply embedded in his character. and i think going forward any effort to try to contain him, which i know some in the white house and in the broader administration have been trying
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to do is especially important when it comes to kons kwenconse decisions. i think the goal might have been psychologically to make jeff sessions, who is a proud man, i served with him in the senate, i did serve with him to make him just be more dependent on pleasing the president. whatever he can do delivering that speech about daca to say we'll do something that will keep these young strivers in our country. it's all part of his manipulation, that is part of who he is and how he behaves. people that have the exercise of power when it comes to something like north korea, life or death. when it comes to something that would be incredibly stupid given
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north korea pulls out of the iran deal so we have a second nuclear crisis to contend with. i'm hoping on the really big issues, there is enough authority to be able to restrain and contain the president. that's what we all have to hope because i think this president and some of the people around him pose a clear and president danger to our country. domestically to the institutions of democracy, ourself governance, our rule of law, internationally in so many ways because of the unpredictability then the fact that there is no strategic plan, just a reactive emotion emotional behavior. so i can only hope and i think every american can only hope people who know better, who have experience and who realize that, you know, this country of ours
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is really worth defending and protecting would be able to prevent anything really bad from happening. it's a horrible thing to have to say about anybody in that office. >> on the question of the challenge that this presidency and this president chose, proves for american norms for american law. i want to ask you about the lock her up thing that started out as astonishing and became a regular daily feature of the campaign and the president and his supporters calling for your arrest, for you to be jailed. he's kept up his rallies as president and that's still a regular thing they chant when he mentions you as he always does. do you take that literally? do you worry they might at some point try to gin up a prosecution against you? >> well, i know there is nothing there so i don't take it substantively as much of a
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worry. here is what i do believe. i believe that trump admires authoritarians. he doesn't just like putin. he wants to be like putin. he wants to have that kind of power that is largely unaccountable, unchecked. and when i first heard that, especially at these rallies that, you know, we're insighting violence and insulting people and all the rest of it, i thought it was bizarre kind of, you know, really unbecoming, somebody running for president. then when they moved it into his convention and it was being done from the platform and people were chanting it and screaming it, i thought wow, this is unlike anything i have ever read about or seen in presidential conventions. every kind of political barrier that should have restrained this president and those urging him
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on was broken through. and so i don't personally worry. i have no doubt that if he got into serious political trouble, he would try to gin something up, you know, about me or president obama, we're his two . but i worry that it is indicative of the kind of self image that he has not only of himself but of what the president should be able to do and that's why it's really imperative that the republicans in congress rein that in. that's part of the reason i mentioned on the state department, you know, standing up to some of these very foolish. plans that they have, why the press has to hold him more accountable than it did during the campaign and why the people around him have to be the first line of defense against him doing something that could have serious repercussions. >> placing a lot of hope for the
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country in the wisdom of the people who surround him. >> well, it's not -- we don't have much else to place it on right now. he is somebody who doesn't listen and pursues his own interests as he perceives them. and is very emotionally reactive. so on the small stuff, you know, they may not be able to stop him. they may need to hold their fire until something is serious enough to intervene. statins lower cholesterol,
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replace the full value of your totaled new car. the guy says, "you picked the wrong insurance plan." no, i picked the wrong insurance company. with new car replacementâ„¢, we'll replace the full value of your car plus depreciation. liberty mutual insurance. are you ever going to run for office? >> i don't know. you know? i'm focused on this national
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democratic redistricting committee, the focus of the political activities at this point. want to make sure that we repel these attacks on our democracy, try to end political gerrymandering to the extent that we can. and then, you know, i'll see. i'm not, you know, saying no at this point but that's not the -- not the focus of what i'm concentrating on. >> not working on the redistricting project because it's part of a larger project in terms of you getting back into public life? >> no. i think -- i'm not being hyperbolic here. i think our democracy is under attack f. you look at gerrymandering in the way in which we have a system where politicians are picking their voters as opposed to citizens picking their representatives. if you look at the way in which these voter suppression laws have been passed. we are coming to be a country that's inconsistent with our founding ideals and the notion of one man, one vote is really under attack so i'm bound and determined to do all that i can to reverse that which is
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happened, especially over the last decade. >> i think you and president obama surprised a lot of people in early january announcing that you were going to be working on this project together, redistricting. in part because it's an old political problem. it's not novel and each party has used it to their own advantage in different ways and different times and people have sort of been better or worse at it in different parts of the countries and different eras. are you and president obama working on this because you want democrats to compete better at this time at the old project of redistricting and gerrymandering or eliminate it in general in a good government way? >> first, princeton did a study saying that what the republicans did in 2011 drawing the lines was the worst partisan gerrymandering of last 50 years. what we are engaged in, sounds inconsistent, is a partisan attempt at good government. all i want have done in 2021 after the census is lines drawn be drawn in a fair way and a
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battle of republican ideas, democratic ideas, liberal ideas, progressive and conservative ideas. if that is the case, if that's the contest that we have, i think democrats will do just fine. but what i do not want to have happen is a successful effort and then have democrats in 2021 do what republicans did in 2011. that is not what this project is all about. >> you feel like republicans kind of ran the table on this during the obama administration doing the red map project in 2010 and tilted the playing field. what you want is to tilt it back and fix the system? >> tilt it back and just to fair. not favor democrats. just to get it to a place where the lines are drawn in such a way that people truly have a choice, more competitive districts at the congressal level, consistent with the wishes of the voters. if you look at wisconsin, for instance, a 50/50 state. republicans control two thirds of the state assembly and when
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you control for everything else, it is really a function of the way in which the lines were drawn in 2011. >> so, i know that in this project you're working on ballot initiatives in some places to try to do nonpartisan redistricting. >> right. >> you're wokking on obviously public consciousness and awareness of these things. litigation strategy. also working on supporting individual democratic candidates in state legislatures whose election would be key in terms of what control of redistricting looks there. a comprehensive strategy i feel like gets at the different almosts to make it as a strategy. what i don't get is why this effort is going to succeed. i feel like i've heard so much democratic hot air on we got to work in the states. we have to work on redistricting and so many projects, launched that were going to do this. >> yeah. >> and never really seemed to. why does yours have traction? >> i think ours is organized,
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first off. it is also only thing in the democratic party sole responsibility this whole notion of redistricting and other reality is in the trump era. and i think people have seen over the past decade what partisan gerrymandering on the republican side has meant. we have state legislatures passed the crazy gun laws, these anti-choice laws, voter suppression laws and not necessarily supported by the people in those states. we have seen a dysfunctional congress where people come to congress, especially in the republican side and because of gerrymandering, you are in a safe seat and worried of being challenged of a person on the right and primaried as opposed to the general election. and that means that you have dysfunction in washington because people don't necessarily have to talk to one another and compromise. that's a bad thing for somebody who is in a gerrymandered district so i think that dissatisfaction with the dysfunction, the concern about what trump -- the trump administration has been doing,
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and the way in which this thing is constructed within the party. and the support x frankly, that we have gotten and having -- >> raised more than $10 million the first half of the year. >> a former president of the united states support this. i think this can be successful. >> i should mention that in the wake of that statewide election of virginia earlier this month, the richmond times dispatch published an editorial about the fact that democrats in that election earned a majority of votes in the house of delegates, over 200,000 more votes for democrats than republicans f. you only look at the votes cast for two major parties, democrats won 55% of the vote. in virginia's legislative races this month. republicans won 45% of the vote. and yet, despite democrats winning so many more votes than the republicans, despite democrats beating the republicans by almost ten points, democrats are still fighting to win enough seats to control the house of delegates. the richmond times-dispatch
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wrote, quote, this year a tidal wave erased much of the gerrymandering advantage but not entirely. that does it for us tonight. we'll see you again next week. now it's time for "the last word with lawrence o'donnell." have a great weekend. good evening, i'm lawrence o'donnell and this is our special thanksgiving week edition of "the last word" with conversations of rachel maddow and steven colbert and the economist i most want to hear from about the impact of the trump tax cuts but first as president trump gets ready for his first semester final exam on tax cuts how does the rest of his report card look? >> he has 24 hours after donald trump's presidential inauguration, people fill the streets of america cities and capitals around the world. >> far more people marching for women rights than inauguration. >> the president late today signing an order for what he calls extreme vetting


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