tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC February 3, 2014 10:00pm-11:01pm PST
sent to the state after hurricane sandy and whether or not the administration divvied that money up fairly or whether there were politics in play. we're going to be taking a dive into some of those questions tomorrow night on that with our own steve kornacki. steve kornacki has been we have breaking news tonight on several fronts in the investigation of governor christie and his administration. bridget anne kelly, the author of the smoking gun e-mail on the traffic problems in fort lee, has announced through her attorney that she is invoking the fifth amendment against self-incrimination. governor christie himself made news tonight in an extraordinary radio interview which he may soon regret in which he changed his story and in which he revealed that his office has
received subpoenas from the u.s. attorney investigating the case. also tonight, governor christie responded to assertions from david wildstein made through his attorney that "evidence exists," end quote, that governor christie knew about the lane closures at the george washington bridge at the time that they were happening. eric scott, the host of "ask the governor," the "ask the governor" show, made news with his very first question in which he asked the governor about his knowledge of the lane closures while they were happening. governor christie gave an entirely, entirely new answer to that question tonight, which proves now -- which says now and only now that he may have known about the traffic problem while it was happening. >> your former appointee to the port authority claimed through his lawyer that he's got evidence to show that you knew about the lane closings in fort
lee while they were happening. your office put out a pretty strong response to alan zegas's letter. >> yep. >> what in particular do you dispute in wildstein's account at this point? >> well, eric, listen, let's make one thing clear right off the bat, which i think is the most important issue. and the most important issue is did i know anything about the plan to close these lanes? did i authorize it? did i know about it? did i approve it? did i have any knowledge of it beforehand? and the answer is still the same. it's unequivocally know. and in fact, no one's ever accused me of that. and that's the thing i think the people of new jersey care about the most. now, when did i first know about the lane closures? >> yeah. >> the fact is the first time this really came into my
consciousness as an issue was when pat foye, the executive director of the port authority's e-mail about this incident was leaked to the media and reported on. and that was the first time that i got a sense that there might be some issue here. >> and who brought that to your attention? was that staff? >> no, it was news accounts. >> but you read them personally or did somebody bring it to your attention? >> no, i read it. in the "wall street journal." and it was that day when i read that that pat foye was saying i didn't know about this, it wasn't clear through me. and whatever else he said in that e-mail. that's when i asked my chief of staff and chief counsel. i said would you look into this and see what's going on here? now, if prior to that -- i know prior to that that there were press accounts about traffic issues up there. and if someone -- you know, if i either read that or someone said something to me about traffic issues up about, it wouldn't
have been meaningful to me because i didn't know that there was any problem up there because i didn't know that we had actually closed lanes up there before that. so my dispute is twofold. first, to make clear to everybody in the midst of, you know, all the things that were reported that nobody has said that i knew anything about this before it happened. and i think that's the most important question. secondly, that when this first became an issue for me -- because let's face it, eric. there's traffic every day at the george washington bridge, at the lincoln tunnel, at the holland tunnel. i hear those reports on the radio. we all hear about them. that's not something that rises to the gubernatorial level. when this first became clear to me, that this was a potential issue, was when the foye e-mail was put out. now, like i said to you, there were press accounts before. whether, you know, i read any of those -- if i did or heard anything from anybody about traffic, it would not have been
meaningful to me because now we're looking at it in the prism of knowing everything we know since january 8th. back then this was not a major issue. and it became one to me in terms of finding out what was going on when the foye e-mail came out. >> the foye e-mail that governor christie was referring to is of course from patrick foye, the executive director of the port authority, who was appointed by new york governor andrew cuomo. in the e-mail foye told the agents he was reopening the lanes. the e-mail first appeared in the "wall street journal" on october 1st. foye wrote, "i believe this hasty and ill-advised decision," to close the lanes, "violates federal law and the laws of both states." the next question tonight to governor christie was about the subpoenas due today to the new jersey legislature. >> so today is the day that subpoenas were due to be answered in the legislative
investigation. we know some of those who were served were granted some extensions. have you seen any of the documentation that had been gathered to this point? >> i have not. we -- the governor's office has started to produce things today. we did not ask for an extension. we started to produce documents today, but we're doing so on a rolling basis. we're working as hard as we can to get through because there was a lot of stuff asked for from us. but we didn't ask for an extension. we started today on a rolling basis to produce things to the legislature. but i have not seen any documents that were produced by anybody else, no. >> are you not the least bit curious to know what's in some of those documents? >> well, i mean, listen, i've got -- here's what i'm curious about, eric. what i'm curious about is what happened here. and that's why i've authorized an internal investigation as i talked about on january 9th. and we've hired a law firm to come in and do that internal investigation. they're working really hard. they're working diligently. and i can't wait for them to be finished so that i can get the full story here. >> and this is the internal
investigation of your staff to determine who may have known what. >> right. and to get into the situation. we're going to try to get as much information as we possibly can by interviewing folks and reviewing documents that are in our possession or we have access to. and then they're going to give a report. so that's what i'm really anxious to find out about. >> is there a timeline on that? >> my timeline to them is as quickly as possible. >> because you made it clear during that press conference if you find out anybody on your staff lied there are going to be repercussions. >> they'll be fired. listen, here's the thing that i find so interesting. because what's going on now with all this other stuff is just a game of gotcha. you know, when did i first learn about this or that? well, the fact the matter is i've been very clear about this. before these lanes were closed i knew nothing about it. i didn't plan it. i didn't authorize it. i didn't approve it. i knew nothing about it.
thereafter, and i've said this a number of times before, it became clear to me this was an issue i had to have somebody look into when the foye e-mail came out. so in the period of time before that there were press accounts, you know. things could have been mentioned to me about traffic. at any point in time. none of it was memorable to me, eric, because i didn't know there was any issue. so what i'm curious about, i'm sure the documents will eventually -- i'll get a chance to look at them. i don't even know if we've gotten copies of them at this point in the governor's office because they're produced to the legislature. but what i'm really curious about is the folks that i hired -- we hired a national law firm to come in, being led by a former assistant united states attorney, who is leading an internal investigation and has done a lot of interviews i know already. and i want to find out what happened here so i can make changes if necessary. if there's anybody else that needs to be held to account, i'll hold them to account. and then to make changes
hopefully so i can assure the people of new jersey that something like this won't happen again. >> you heard it here first. chris christie can't wait. he just can't wait. you heard him say "i can't wait." for their own internal investigation at the governor's office to find out what really happened here. an investigation that chris christie did not think worth pursuing himself the day he decided to fire bridget anne kelly without asking her one word about why she wrote the e-mail "time for some traffic problems in fort lee." governor christie was asked tonight if he knows if anyone else on his team is still lying to him. >> are you confident at this point in your day-to-day operations that there is nobody on your staff right now that is lying to you? >> there's been nothing that's been brought to light so far that would make me believe that anyone is. but i'll tell you something.
i'm not warrantying anything anymore after what happened before. so i want the internal investigation to run its course and i don't want to pak any prejudgments on it pro or con. i think it would be wrong for me to do that, both for the people who work on my staff and for the people who serve me. >> there's probably nobody who knows better than you how this whole process plays out in terms of legal terms. you were the united states attorney before you became governor. nobody has prosecuted more government corruption more successfully than you have. so i'm going to ask you to put kind of your prosecutor's hat on for a second. do you see as a prosecutor possible criminal charges against somebody like bridget anne kelly or david wildstein? >> you know my standard answer on this, and i'm not going to deviate from it, which is i hated when i was u.s. attorney when politicians would give opinions about what should be done or not done by a prosecutor
while they were in the midst of doing their work. and i'm just not going to do that. i'm not going to sit here and give opinions on that. one, because quite frankly, eric, i don't know all the facts yet. and so for me to give an opinion would be irresponsible, not knowing all the facts. secondly, that's not my job now. and it's not appropriate i think for me at this point in time to comment or give opinions on what the u.s. attorney's office should do or might do. i just think it's wrong. i hated it when i was u.s. attorney, and i'm not going to participate in it. and it's not a dodge on this particular instance because if you've listened to me over time when they've asked me that regarding other people, i've said i'm not going to give opinions on that. i just think it's not appropriate for me to do that regarding others. and so i certainly am not going to do it regarding folks who were previously associated with me. >> my last question is this. i mean, you've obviously -- this has obviously taken a toll on your family.
this has got to be hard on your kids, who are seeing and hearing and some of the -- what people are saying about you. what do you say to them? what did you say to your kids? and how has your family been through this? >> well, first off, my family's great. and i'll tell you, yesterday, you know, we're all at the super bowl together, and my son andrew, who had been away during a break from school to go skiing, i saw him for the first time in a week this weekend. and he's my oldest. he's my 20-year-old who's a sophomore at college. and i put my arm around him. i said, are you doing okay with all this? and he said to me, dad, stop asking me that question, i'm fine. i'm fine. and don't worry about it. so my wife and my kids, they know me. and they know there's nothing to be worried about. because i told them the same thing that i just told all the people who are listening tonight. is that i had nothing to do with this.
and i'm so disappointed that this has happened, but i'm also determined to get to the bottom of it and to fix it once and for all if i haven't fixed it already by the actions i've already taken and to move on to do the job that the people of new jersey elected me to do, which is to try to continue to control property taxes, to try to reform education, to try to create jobs. i mean, i had a meeting today with the senate president and speaker to talk about our agendas as we move forward, and we had a really good hour and a half meeting today. and talking about all those types of things and other issues that are on their agenda. so i appreciate you asking about my family. you know i love them. but they're fine. you know, the fact is that things happen like this in public life sometimes. you get disappointed by people. there are down moments. and i'm certainly not saying to anybody that any of us in my family have enjoyed this. but they also know that dad has
a job to do. and my job is to be governor of the state of new jersey for the next four years. and i'm going to do that job. and i'm back to work, eric. i can't afford to allow this to dominate my time the way it dominates the time of some folks in the media and some partisans. i've got to do my job every day. when the super bowl's going on yesterday and we're trying to figure out how we're going to deal with 34,000 people moving out of there, i'm on the phone. with my chief counsel, with the d.o.t. commissioner, with the head of nj transit-w my authorities union chief to say what's our plan going to be, guys? the thing about this is while it dominates lots of other folks it can't dominate me. because i have the responsibility for 8.9 million people. and i'll be damned if i'm going to let anything get in the way of me doing my job. i took an oath a couple weeks ago. so what the people in new jersey need to know is two things about this. one more time.
first, i had nothing to do with this. no knowledge. no authorization. no planning. nothing to do with this before this decision was made to close these lanes by the port authority. secondly, that while i am disappointed by what happened here i am determined to fix it. i've told people all the time in this job i can't promise you that we're going to be perfect. but what i can promise you is we're going to do our best and when there are mistakes that we're going to do our best to fix them. and that's what we're in the process of doing. and sometimes it's going to take a little while, eric. but here's what i don't want to have happen. i don't want to have some internal investigation that doesn't get to the bottom of it and then we find out more stuff later. i've told these guys, be thorough, be efficient so we get to it as quickly as we can, but get me the story. as best as you can tell it with as many folks as we can get to cooperate with talking to us.
>> every time chris christie talks about this publicly, he says something that is absolutely prohibitive to the possibility of him running a successful presidential campaign. we will have more analysis on that later. and coming up next, one of the new jersey legislators on the special investigative committee will react to everything we've just heard from the governor including the new information tonight from the governor and the breaking news tonight that bridget kelly is going to plead the fifth amendment. [ male announcer ] staples has everything you need to launch your big idea. adding thousands of products online every day. from hard hats and goggles. to tools and cleaning products... to state of the art computers, to coffee to keep you fueled. from the sign over the door to the boxes to get it out the door. yes, staples has everything you need to launch your big idea. except your big idea. so when you get an idea, we're ready with everything else. staples. make more happen.
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could have asked her all about that before he fired her, but he deliberately did not ask her a single question. and tonight he claims to the people of new jersey that he cannot wait to find out why bridget kelly did that. and tonight bridget kelly announced she's not going to tell anyone. she will not say a word about this. she will remain silent by invoking the fifth amendment right against self-incrimination. one of the new jersey assemblymen investigating this incident will join me next. [ female announcer ] crest presents:
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bridget anne kelly, the author of the smoking gun e-mails that links the christie administration directly to the controversial and possibly criminal closure of access lanes to the george washington bridge, is now invoking her fifth amendment right against self-incrimination and is refusing to comply with a subpoena from the new jersey legislative commission. a five-page response to the subpoena. bridget kelly wrote "the information demanded from ms. kelly related to the reassignment of access lanes to the george washington bridge directly overlaps with the parallel federal grand jury investigation being conducted by the united states attorney's office for the district of new jersey. as such, ms. kelly asserts her rights and will not produce the information demanded by the committee." during an appearance on new jersey radio, talk radio tonight, just as that news was breaking, chris christie was asked for his reaction to his former deputy chief of staff
refusing to cooperate with the legislature's investigation. >> you know, listen, it doesn't tell me anything. i know everything i needed to know from a point of employment for bridget kelly when she didn't tell me the truth. and i fired her. and what i've said as to all these people are that have lawyers now is i hope they would share information with us but i also understand that people have rights and they're going to exercise those rights as they see fit and as their lawyers advise them to do so. i would hope they share any information they had that would let me get to the bottom of it. but on the other hand, they have constitutional rights like everybody else and if they're going to exercise them there's nothing i could do about that, eric. but we're certainly going to be asking and have asked for information from folks, and if folks give it to us, great. if they don't, great. because they say they're exercising their constitutional rights. i don't think any of us could be critical of us for exercising their constitutional rights.
>> governor christie was also asked tonight about subpoenas directed at him. >> has your office, your office now, the governor's office, not the campaign, been subpoenaed by the united states attorney? >> yes. >> and when are those subpoenas due? >> you know, i don't know. but i know the requests -- and by the way, they did that and i understand why they did it. we had already communicated to them that we would cooperate voluntarily. they decided to send a subpoena. and that's fine. we are complying with that in the same way we'll comply with the legislative subpoenas. >> of course, christie suggesting that it would have been perfectly reasonable for his office to just voluntarily comply with requests from the u.s. attorney and no subpoena was necessary, he knows is a ridiculous proposition. the reason the u.s. attorney issues subpoenas is that any tampering with any of the evidence under subpoena would
instantly become a federal crime. there were no subpoena, that jeopardy would not exist. today was the original due date for responses to 20 subpoenas issued by the legislature's investigative committee. but the committee announced that it has granted several extensions to that deadline. one of the requests granted was to governor christie's campaign office. joining me now is assembly majority leader louis greenwald, who is one of the members on the special committee that is investigating the bridge lane closures. it was really an extraordinary interview on the radio there tonight. you have the governor now saying that -- his phrase was "i can't wait to find out what went on here." in other words, i can't wait to find out what bridget kelly knows. and he's saying that on the same night that we discover bridget kelly isn't going to tell anyone, she's not going to tell you, she's going to invoke her fifth amendment right. and then the governor says that her invocation of her fifth amendment right tells him
absolutely nothing. what does it tell you? >> well, you know, lawrence, i have to tell you, i know bridget kelly's attorney. he's -- i have tremendous respect for him. and the governor's not wrong in what he said that they're going to take advice from their counsel and they have rights of themselves as citizens. i would also point out that mr. wildstein had taken the fifth amendment early on when he first appeared before the committee. but as those weeks have gone by, he has started to share more information, as you have seen, publicly. and i think the most important thing here is we want to know who knew what. we want to know who ordered this, we want to know where it began. and i think as this -- this investigation and the discovery period we are, in it's just that. it's a discovery period. you're trying to discover that very critical information. and this is going to be a long process and a methodical process. but i think as we start to gather the documents, which will
be shared, and that those documents come in, that we will learn more. and in addition to that, our counsel has as in any case, any legal matter, really started to interact with the counsel of the people that have received the subpoenas and started to have some very good conversations and share the beginning of sharing information back and forth. so i can't stress enough, lawrence. i've said this a number of times on your show and others. the subpoenas is not an indication that we think someone has committed a crime. it's not an indication we think someone is guilty of something. it is a discovery tool to gather information and find out what was the root of this abuse of power and where did it go. >> do you think your investigation would be much farther down the road tonight if governor christie had asked bridget kelly why did you write that e-mail about time for traffic problems in fort lee? if he just asked her that one question before firing her. >> well, look, i think obviously, lawrence, if the governor had asked that question
and she had been forth coming in her information, that would be information that the governor's office would be able to share with us. and obviously just fundamentally we'd be farther along. but trying to go back and play monday morning quarterback as to would should have asked what and when, why didn't they have the curiosity or what curiosity did they have, is not going to help us move the ball forward from where we are today. it's why we took the extraordinary step, much like the governor did, we hired a nationally recognized firm with a very well-respected former u.s. attorney, who is very active in this case. >> new jersey assembly majority leader louis greenwald, thank you very much for joining us on this breaking news night. >> lawrence, thank you. coming up, where all this leaves governor christie in terms of a political future. i've said already it's over, he has no real chance of running for president. tonight he made it even worse. that's next.
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i understand that it's a distraction. believe me, nobody understands that better. it's not like i can say okay, listen, everybody, i need a few months off to deal with this, i'll be back to you. that's not the way life works. and what the people of new jersey need to know is i don't need a few months off to deal with this because they know the truth. they know me. they just re-elected me resoundingly. and they know i'm going to do this job.
and that's it. and anybody who tries to distract me from doing this job is going to be disappointed. because i won't be distracted. >> and the people of new jersey in a recent farleigh dickinson poll said that 53% of them think it is very unlikely that chris christie did not know about the lane closures according to the story he is telling. joining me now, the "washington post's" jonathan capehart and brian murphy, a professor at baruch college, and a former political reporter in new jersey. brian worked for david wildstein. we're in the full disclosure section. brian worked for david wildstein in 2002 as the managing editor of politics.com. and the full disclosure goes on to say that bill is also a friend -- you're also a friend of bill baroni. >> that's right. >> and so as a friend of bill baroni can you get him on the phone and find out when he's going to invoke the fifth amendment? >> i wish i could.
i haven't talked to him actually in a couple of years. but he did come to my wedding. but i haven't been in touch with him in a while. so i unfortunately can't do that. >> so brian, the way this has out and tonight with this extraordinary interview by the governor we see a new opening in this story where he is allowing for the possibility that somewhere around him and within earshot was the knowledge of the traffic jam while it was happening and then he leans on the phrase "it didn't come into my consciousness." until that famous foye memo arrived. >> right. it's a curious -- this bar keeps moving. and that gets journalists very curious, and it gets someone like me, a journalist turned historian -- my superpower in life is that i can read documents very closely. and when i look at this, i just see these press availabilities
that he's done -- and he hasn't done many. but the january 9th one and now tonight this just raises more questions than it answers for me. this is not clarifying things. >> jonathan capehart, that is the big problem. brian has identified it. these stories, in order for these kinds of press moments to work, you want them to not create any new news, and the way they create new news is you, chris christie, give us a new story. which he did tonight. >> yes. by giving that little window. the one place where he has been consistent is saying that he didn't know about it really until the "wall street journal" story about the patrick foye e-mail saying stop the lane closures. he said this during a press conference on december 13th of last year. but even then the "wall street journal" reported that there
were -- that because of what the governor said there were now two timelines out there from the governor about when he learned about these traffic -- this -- the traffic lane closures and even in that story it said that he might have heard about it from press reports before reading about patrick foye, the patrick foye e-mail. so i am as confused by the moving goalposts as anybody else. >> i said when he did his big long news conference that he absolutely killed any presidential campaign right in the language of that news conference when he said, "i delegate enormous authority to my staff and my cabinet," and then he says, "of course they have humiliated and embarrassed new jersey" and him and all that. then tonight he said this thing about i can't warranty anything that they say. i can't warranty anything that my staff says. which is -- they can throw that at him if he ever dares to step on a presidential debate stage.
it just seems like there's no way -- brian, i don't see any way he can talk about this where he doesn't have to put down in his own defense some statement that makes him unelectable as president. >> left himself so little wiggle room, and now he's trying to create some. i don't think he knew that he asked his chief of staff and counsel to look into this after he learned about the story in the "wall street journal." i don't think we knew that before. i'm surprised he's still talking about a traffic study. and "shenanigans" is the word he uses that might have arisen out of it. as a matter of -- as someone who observes professional politicians, you know, i thought between what happened on saturday night and what we've heard tonight, i'm not really sure what the image -- i'm not sure what image he's trying to convey here. but it's not -- it doesn't seem consistent with what you would
want to put out if you were trying to run for national office. >> and the big defense he put out this weekend against the wildstein -- wildstein's lawyer's statement is that -- his big defense is i, governor chris christie, appointed to the port authority a completely untrustworthy liar. that's what i did at the port authority. that was his big defense. jonathan, sorry. we're out of time. we have much more christie radio stuff to use than we thought. we're out of time. jonathan capehart and brian murphy, thank you very much for joining me tonight. >> thanks very much. >> thanks, lawrence. up next, a pause for a very special "rewrite." and a farewell. as a business owner, i'm constantly putting out fires.
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[ male announcer ] introducing fedex one rate. simple, flat rate shipping with the reliability of fedex. they will dim the lights on broadway on wednesday night at 7:45 p.m. all the lights. on all the theater marquees. the theater world does this in moments of great loss. this is such a moment. on wednesday night broadway will dim the lights for philip seymour hoffman, who died sunday at the age of 46. his last stage performance was in mike nichols' brilliant broadway revival of arthur miller's "death of a salesman." i had the privilege of being in the audience for one of those performances. but the truly lucky ones were those few who got to see philip seymour hoffman's first turn as willy loman in 1984, when his high school drama director decided that the school play would be "death of a salesman" because they finally had a high school senior who could handle
the lead role. it's impossible in a few minutes here to summarize a 25-year brilliant career that includes 50 movies, oscar nominations, tony nominations. let's just watch him work. first in "boogie nights." >> wait, wait, wait. [ bleep ]. how much time is there? >> i'm sorry. >> what the hell is the matter with you? >> i'm sorry. >> why did you do that, scottie? >> you look at me sometimes -- >> what? >> i want to know if you like me. >> well, of course -- yeah, i like you, scottie. i -- >> can i kiss you? >> scottie, i -- >> please, can i kiss you on the mouth? >> no. >> please let me. >> scottie. >> i'm really sorry. i didn't mean to grab you like that or scare you or anything. do you want to kiss me or -- >> scottie. >> no? >> what's the matter with you? >> all right, forget it. i'm really drunk. really, i'm just -- i'm out of my head. i'm so -- i'm really wasted. really, dirk, i'm really just wasted. i'm crazy right now. i'm really crazy.
>> do you want to go back inside? >> do you like my car, dirk? >> what? >> i mean -- >> yeah. yeah. >> because i wanted to -- you know, i wanted to make sure you thought it was cool or else i was going to take it back. >> oh. >> yeah. >> it's great, scottie. >> happy new year. >> in "almost famous" he offered words to live by. >> good-looking people, they've got no spine. their art never lasts. then they get the girls. but we're smarter. >> yeah. i can really see that now. >> because great art is about guilt and longing and, you know, love disguised as sex and sex disguised as love. hey, let's face, it you've got a big head start. >> i'm glad you were home. >> i'm always home. i'm uncool. >> me too. >> you're doing great.
the only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool. this is my advice to you, and i know you think these guys are your friends. if you want to be a true friend to them, be honest and unmerciful. >> philip seymour hoffman was nominated for the oscar for supporting actor three times. first in "charlie wilson's war." >> gus. >> yeah. >> the swiss make an anti-aircraft gun called the holicon. >> listen, charlie -- >> 20-millimeter cannon -- >> i know the harlicon. don't forget the limo driver. >> what do you mean? >> you took a limo from the casino to the airport. it's easy enough to track down a limo driver, hand him a subpoena, ask him if anything happened in the back seat. in terms of cleaning up this -- >> were you listening at the door? >> i was listening at the door. >> were you standing at the god [ bleep ] door listening to me?
>> no. >> that's a thick door. you stood there and you listened to me? >> i wouldn't stand at the door. don't be an idiot. i bugged the scotch bottle. >> what? >> it's got a little transmitter on it. i've got a little thing on my ear to get past it. >> i don't believe this. who the [ bleep ] -- who the [ bleep ] are you? >> it's not in my ear right now. take it easy. i was going to tell but it but i'd leave the room for a second because you're getting indicted. >> is there a camera in there? >> that's a little paranoid. >> if he had a favorite among his films, based on his public comments, it seemed to be paul thomas anderson's "magnolia." >> i know this sounds silly, and i know that i might sound ridiculous, like this is the scene in the movie where the guy's trying to get hold of the long lost son, you know, but this is that scene. this is that scene. and i think they have those scenes in movies because they're true. you know, because they really happen. and you've got to believe me, this is really happening.
i mean, i can give you my number, and you can go check with whoever you've got to check with and call me back. but do not leave me hanging on this. all right? please. i'm just -- please. see -- see, this is the scene of the movie where you help me out. >> and of course as everyone knows philip seymour hoffman won. his much-deserved oscar for "capote." >> it's all right.
>> i did everything i could. >> it's okay. >> i truly did. >> i know. >> it's time. >> philip seymour hoffman leaves his mother and father, his brother and two sisters, and he also leaves his three children and his partner and mother of his children, mimi o'donnell, who issued this statement. "we are devastated by the loss of our beloved phil and appreciate the outpouring of love and support we have received from everyone. this is a tragic and sudden loss, and we ask that you respect our privacy during this time of grieving. please keep phil in your
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with tampax radiant -- whatever i want. [ female announcer ] tampax radiant protects 30% better. plus, it comes with a resealable wrapper for discreet disposal. you'll be ready to wear anything with the tampax radiant collection. if you blink, we go back to the start. infringement. you blinked. starting now. you're not to blink. if you blink, we go back to the start. do you often think about how inconsequential you are? >> no. >> do you believe that god will save you from your own ridiculousness? >> no. >> have you ever had intercourse with someone inside your family? >> yes. >> have you ever had intercourse with someone inside your family? >> yes. >> who? >> my auntie. >> have you killed anyone? >> no. >> maybe? >> not me. >> have you killed anyone? >> no. >> how many times did you have
intercourse with your aunt? >> three times. >> where's your aunt now? >> i don't know. >> would you like to have intercourse with her again? >> no. >> do you regret this? >> no. >> where's your mother? >> i don't know. >> infringement. [ bleep ] back to the start. >> joining me now, david denby, film critic for "the new yorker." david, i asked you what clips you thought you might want to see tonight. that was one of them. why "the master"? why that part? >> well, he's a public man for a lot of it, but what you saw there was a very intimate moment with joaquin phoenix. and at other times he betrays all kinds of anger, lust, rage. i mean, the guy had an ability to open up his soul. i mean, he wasn't the romantic actor. he wasn't a physically heroic actor, but he was the soulful actor of his generation, par excellence. i mean, the truman capote thing that you showed, he's breaking
up in that scene, but that movie -- in that movie you get all kinds of guile and calculation and ambition. it's an extremely rich performance, as so many of them were. >> i want to show another clip that you suggested that we show tonight from "capote." let's look at that. >> we're not so different as you might think. i was abandoned repeatedly as a child. my mom would drag me along to some new town so she could take up with another man she'd met. and night after night she'd lock me in the hotel room alone. mom would turn the latch and tell the staff not to let me out no matter what. and i was terrified.
i'd scream my head off. until finally i'd collapse on the carpet next to the door and i'd fall asleep. >> david, it was one of the most deserved best actor oscars ever awarded. >> yeah. you see the brilliant technique. that high, thin sort of goose quill voice, you know, of truman capote's but also this anxiety and this sadness. this guy really understood loneliness and defeat. and you showed that in some of your earlier clips. he understood what it was to be a loser. and he was one of the great winners of the acting profession of all time. he never lost his touch for that and his understanding of it. so it's a loss, lawrence. it leaves a hole that cannot be
filled. there aren't many dramatic actors in hollywood. there are a lot of clowns. there are a lot of buffoons. and there are some very good young women. but there are not many dramatically capable young males. so when a heath ledger dies or when this guy dies, i mean, i'm just, you know, devastated. the movies are devastated. >> and he was one of the wonderful good guys of the business. never an entourage. always kind of unassumingly off in a corner, wherever you would see him. >> rumpled, completely an actor. you know, completely unpretentious but completely serious all -- and as you indicated, an enormous theater career. chekhov, o'neil, sam shepherd. he would have gone on and done things in the theater and been brilliant there also. i don't know how -- >> he will be missed. but he's left us an enormous treasure to keep looking at for years to come. david denby, thank you very, very much for joining us on this
sad night. david dunby, the new yorker. more trash talk from trenton. let's play "hardball." >> good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start tonight with this wild weekend we just saw in trenton. what possessed the christie team to put out a memo trashing the man he, the governor personally appointed to the new york port authority. why did he get so down in the mud to go after the man's behavior back in high school days, yes, high school. if the governor was out to prove himself a bully, this would be, let's face it, the way to go. if he were out to show he knows how to intimidate an adversary, go back to his teen years.