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ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES for January 30, 2019, MSNBC - Part 2

January 31, 2019

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<Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES>

<Date: January 30, 2019>

<Time: 20:00>

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<Head: ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES for January 30, 2019, MSNBC - Part 2>

<Sect: News; Domestic>

<Byline: Chris Hayes, Zerlina Maxwell>

<Guest: Chris Murphy, Barbara Lee, Betsy Woodruff, Robert Reich, Brian

Buetler>

<High: Today, lawmakers from both parties met for the first time to try to

head off another Trump shutdown on a temporary bill to fund the government

runs out 16 days from now. Days after Donald Trump announced he`d run for

president, a consulting firm with links to Israeli intelligence started

gaming out how a foreign government could meddle in the U.S. political

process met with the Trump campaign. Chris Hayes interviews Sen. Chris

Murphy (D-CT) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA).>

<Spec: Donald Trump; Government Shutdown; Border Wall; Democrats; Robert

Mueller; Wikistrat; Politics>

HAYES: Betsy Woodruff, thanks for joining me. Great reporting. Still to come, one of the President`s most celebrated achievements promised to bring thousands of good old-fashioned manufacturing jobs to Wisconsin. Now it might not happen after all. The Foxconn walked back next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Remember when the President went to Wisconsin to announce what he was calling the eighth wonder of the world. The signature Trump deal was a deal with the Chinese tech company Foxconn to bring a Chinese factory into the U.S. to reverse 30 years of bad trends.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: Moments ago we broke ground on a plant that will provide jobs for much more than 13,000 Wisconsin workers. I had this incredible company going to invest someplace in the world, not here, necessarily. And I will tell you they wouldn`t have done it here except I became president, so that`s good.

This plant will manufacture state of the art LCDs, adding an average of 3.4 billion to the state`s economy every single year. I want to wish you good luck and congratulations on truly one of the eighth wonder. I think we can see -- this is -- we can say -- the eighth wonder of the world. This is the eighth wonder of the world.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: The eighth wonder of the world, or one of them. Critics at the time raised questions about the deal, including the fact that Foxconn was getting more than $4 billion in state subsidies, that the terms of the deal were secret, that the cost per job was at best nearly $350,000, and at worst around $1.5 million per job.

And then the news started come out that maybe a la Trump Taj Mahal or Trump University, it was too good to be true. First, The Wall Street Journal reported the company was considering importing Chinese engineers instead of hiring Americans. Then two weeks ago, Foxconn said it may slow the pace of recruitment at its Wisconsin plant. And now the today the company says it`s reconsidering its plan to make LCD screens at that plant at all. That would mean none of the manufacturing jobs President Trump promised.

A special assistant to Foxconn chief executive told Reuters in Wisconsin we`re not building a factory. You can`t use a factory to view our Wisconsin investment.

Joining me now, Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton, the author of The Common Good that is now out in paperback.

Are you surprised, Robert?

ROBERT REICH, FORMER SECRETARY OF LABOR: Well, Chris, I wish I were surprised. It`s not the eighth wonder of the world. In fact, there`s no wonder at all here. Foxconn -- basically a lot of people doubted that Foxconn was going to make these jobs in Wisconsin. It was a lot of hype, and hype is, shall we say, nothing new to this president.

HAYES: You know, it was thing that people thought was a con from the start. And it was a sort of pioneer in what is already a tawdry genre of these kind of throwing subsidies at companies. This really was out -- far out and above as far as I can understand, even in an area where that is pretty gross.

REICH: Yeah, per job, Wisconsin was providing probably the largest subsidy that has been provided by any state in this kind of -- it is a con. You know, there are a certain number of jobs that are going to be here. And if one state provide as lot of money for those jobs, to attract those jobs, it`s just jobs that don`t go to another state. So, it is a con. It is just -- it`s money that could otherwise go to education and job training and infrastructure, and basic research, it`s not really helpful to Wisconsin.

I think Wisconsinites are actually better without Foxconn than they are with this big subsidy and Foxconn.

HAYES: Yeah, the upside here is that what happens in a lot of these cases is the company does come in, take the subsidies and they don`t actually end up hiring as many people. If Foxconn sort of precancels, then at least every can walk away from the deal.

REICH: Now, Foxconn has not canceled yet. Foxconn is still hinting that it may want these subsidies. But there is absolutely no way.

I mean, manufacturing jobs are not really coming back in large numbers. We have not come back even to the number of manufacturing jobs we had before the great recession in 2007.

HAYES: Yeah, this is one of the sort of great promises of Trump, right, the idea was 30 years of a kind of neoliberal trade agenda, selling out the American worker, themes that I think you`ve talked about, that other people on the left have talked about, that he railed against NAFTA, that those trends were going to reverse. He comes in and he, quote unquote saves the Carrier jobs. He slaps on tariffs, which have already wiped out -- so that the Harley Davidson profit. You have Ford canceling a factory in Lordstown (ph). He has not delivered on that core promise.

REICH: No. And manufacturing jobs -- remember, the reason that everybody wanted manufacturing jobs back is that they used to pay much better than service jobs. And the reason they paid so much better is they were unionized.

I mean, most of the manufacturing jobs today, particularly in right-to-work states, that`s what they`re called, ironically, like Wisconsin now, a lot of those jobs are not unionized. The starting salary is, adjusted for inflation, about half what it was 20 or 30 years ago. So these are not great jobs, even if they were being created, they`re not great jobs.

HAYES: Is this a better economy than the economy Trump inherited two years ago?

REICH: The economy in terms of unemployment is a little bit better, yes. There are more jobs. But, Chris, the great problem for American workers is not the number of jobs, it`s the quality of the job. What people need are better jobs, higher wages, more secure, better benefits, that`s the big problem across America. You`ve got 78 percent of American workers living paycheck to paycheck with very lousy jobs, really, and that`s the problem.

HAYES: And this was the big promise here. I mean the promise of the stopping Carrier layoffs, the promise of this Foxconn deal, right, was this is going to be a new era in which blue collar folks can go in and make a good healthy living wage and have a middle class life, that was why this was a tantalizing promise, it`s why Scott Walker and Donald Trump took out the golden shovels to make this campaign appearance.

REICH: And arguably it`s also why they were elected, certainly Donald Trump. Across the Midwest, across the Rust Belt, I mean, workers genuinely and with good reason were worried about their jobs felt that they were, and again justifiably on a downward escalator, but all of this rhetoric and all of this Foxconn con has not really helped.

HAYES: All right, Robert Reich, thank you so much for your time.

Still ahead, the fight for the identity of the Democratic Party in this presidential election. Plus, tonight`s Thing One, Thing Two next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Thing One tonight, remember during the Trump shutdown when the Clemson football team visited the White House, but there was no one in the White House to make them any dinner because most of the resident staff wasn`t working because of the Trump shutdown. And remember when our super rich president stepped up, opened his wallet and ordered in fast food.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We`re going to serve McDonald`s, Wendy`s and Burger King with some pizza.

So we went out and we ordered American fast food paid for by me. Lots of hamburgers, lots of pizza.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What`s your favorite thing here, Mr. President?

TRUMP: I like it all. It`s all good stuff. Great American food.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you prefer McDonalds or Wendy`s?

TRUMP: I like them all.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s a tough question.

TRUMP: If it`s American, I like it. It`s all American stuff.

We have pizzas, we have 300 hamburgers, many, many french fries, all of our favorite foods. It`s good stuff. Grab one, fellas. Grab one.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Too many fries to count.

Clearly, the president`s favorite day in office, I think. So, yeah, there was lots and lots of fast food. 300 hamburgers, or converted into Trump speak later, 1,000 hamburgers.

For the record, it looked to be way fewer than 1,000 hamburgers.

But there are still outstanding questions about that night, like all that food was cold, right? It had to be cold. And what did the players think? And did the whole Clemson team really show up to eat fast food with Donald Trump? We have answers in Thing Two in 60 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: In the Trump era, for the first time we`re seeing sports teams that do not want to come can anywhere near the White House. The Golden State Warriors skipped out on the tradition after winning the NBA championship in 2017 as did the NCAA champion Villanova Wildcats last year, and the Philadelphia Eagles were famously dis-invited after nearly the entire Super Bowl-winning team said they would boycott.

But earlier this month when the supposedly super rich president catered with happy meals to the national championship winning Clemson Tigers, they did show up, well, some of them did. As it turns out there were quite a few players missing. The Root reports that just only senior made the trip, only six of the players in attendance were even listed on Clemson`s national championship depth chart, and just 15 of the 57 black players on that team listed on the schools official roster attended the White House visit, the vast majority of whom were freshmen or sophomores who had very little playing time during the season.

Clemson University`s president said today there could be any number of reasons why players didn`t attend. It could have been the gross food, or the gross president, who is to say for sure.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Mitch McConnell is pretty upset that Democrats are trying to make it easier for people to vote. First piece of legislation House Democrats have introduced, HR1, would simplify voter registration, reform gerrymandering, and create a federal holiday for election day, among other provisions. McConnell has written a very angry op-ed about this horrible offense. And today, he took to the floor to continually hammering on the theme.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL, (R) KENTUCKY: Just what America needs, another paid holiday and a bunch of government workers being paid to go out and work. I assume our folks on -- our colleagues on the other side on their campaigns. This is a Democrat plan to restore democracy?

(EDN VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Ah, yes, what could be worse than giving people a day off on election day so they can vote? How nefarious.

McConnell has called this bill a power grab. And in one sense, he is right, the idea behind it is to start to grab power back from politicians who choose their voter through gerrymandering and try to restrict access to the franchise and give it back to those in whom power should be rightly invested: the voters.

Nothing to me is more revealing of core pathology of the modern Republican Party than the way it sees widening access to the ballot and higher turnout as a threat.

And they`re not necessarily wrong. I mean Mitch McConnell`s ideal political system is one in which ultra wealth anonymous donors pour unlimited money into elections to elect Republican majorities that can gerrymander their states to insulate them from democratic accountability, all while he pushes through dozens and hundreds of unelected judges who can sit on the court and knock down future liberal legislation no matter how much the people demand it.

More than any other politician, it is Mitch McConnell who is the soul of the modern Republican Party. If his project is successful, he will barricade the power of a shrinking minority of voters and plutocrats inside a structural fortress that cannot be penetrated by democratic will.

Historian Christopher Browning wrote, “if the U.S. is someone whom historians will look back on as the grave digger of American democracy, it is Mitch McConnell.”

But that`s only if, in this moment, the forces of democracy are successfully vanquished by McConnell and the movement and party he represents. And that is still very much an open question.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HOWARD SCHULTZ, FORMER CEO, STARBUCKS: I`m not a Democrat. I don`t affiliate myself with the Democratic Party who is so far left, who basically wants the government to take over health care, which we cannot afford, the government to give free college to everybody, and the government to give everyone a job.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: That`s the most interesting aspect of the strange and often cringe inducing Howard Schultz phenomenon is that he has been for most of his adult life a fairly reliable Democratic donor.

And he is not alone in being a rich person who gives money to Democratic candidates, but would very much like the government not to tax their wealth or fundamentally alter the centers of the nations of economic power. Which is one of the core questions for Democrats in this era and this campaign, how many Howard Schultz`s are still inside the tent writing checks and attempting to make sure their class interests are protected?

I`m joined now by Zerlina Maxwell, MSNBC policy analyst and Brian Buetler, editor-in-chief of Crooked.com. He wrote a piece today titled “Howard Schultz at the plutocrat revolt.”

Zerlina, I`ll start with you, the one thing that I think is interesting here, actually, is that this last few days have seemed to actually unify Democrats in response to him.

ZERLINA MAXWELL, MSNBC POLICY ANALYST: Yes. Because he doesn`t have any qualifications to run for president. So, he is talking about seriously considering running for president because he can because he is a rich person, not because he has any qualifications or previous job experience, which would set him up to run for president. And that`s actually what we are objecting to.

He also doesn`t have any substantive ideas. When he was asked on CBS this morning, well, what`s your big idea? He said I`m going to pull people together and unite the country, that was his big idea.

If you`re going have a bunch of strategists and policy advisers who are setting you to run for president, one would think you would think about some policy specifics. And I think Democrats right now, we`re talking about Medicare for all, we`re talking about free college, or tuition-free college, and we`re talking about substantive policy ideas that actually make people`s lives better. Hes not talking about that.

HAYES: Right, exactly. You can talk about like if you`re going to run on privatizing Social Security or cutting Social Security and Medicare, you should run on that and say it.

MAXWELL: Run on what you actually believe.

HAYES: You know, Brian, you had -- I thought your piece was really because it kind of articulated something I had been feeling. I want to read this part and have you explain. “Schultz`s candidacy is a counterpart to corporate America`s winking complicity with Trump`s agenda. It`s a warning from donors to Democrats not to respond to Trumpism with an appeal to working class solidarity, a threat to booby trap the apple cart if Democrats promise to upset it.”

What do you mean by that?

BRIAN BUETLER, CROOKED.COM: So, I guess what I mean is that for a long time -- and even throughout part of the Trump era, Democrats have tried to broaden the tent, you know. It stems from Bernie Sanders on the left to, you know, Sally Yates and James Comey even on the right who are now supporting Democrats very openly. And they have been seeking a united front from basically all the forces in American politics that believe Trump is an unacceptable threat in office. And that he needs to be defeated, and they have sort of convinced themselves that at least part of their donor class base is with them on that.

And at least on these questions of economic power, they`re coming to -- I hope that they`re coming to learn that that`s not really the case, and that when push comes to shove, people like Howard Schultz, who, you know, will play nice on issues like the environment and on gay rights and other social issues will throw the election to Trump if he thinks that`s what he needs to stop an economically progressive agenda.

HAYES: Now one thing -- I was looking at data today, which is interesting, about the donor class. And actually, the Democratic donor class is quite liberal. In fact, they sync up -- interestingly, people that give over a thousand dollars -- this is some data from Progress Data I was looking at - - their opinions on stuff matches pretty well with Democrats in the base.

MAXWELL: Right.

HAYES: On one issue there is a big divergence, which is raising taxes, basically, right. Like and this is one of the things you`re seeing, right? Like, you know, Elizabeth Warren wants to tax wealth at 2 percent on people who have over $50 million. If you have over $50 million if you`re a Democrat, you might not like that.

MAXWELL: I get that, right. But I think that what we`ve seen with Donald Trump is not just a lack of empathy, but it`s like you know I`m running for president and I`m a rich guy, but I will do it with less racism, that`s essentially what Howard Schultz is doing. And I think that that`s a red flag for me, because it`s not just that Donald Trump is saying and doing racist things, he is also implementing policies that are hurting and impacting negatively communities of color.

So I think that if I were Howard Schultz, and I was seriously considering running for president, I would lay out an agenda to address those issues and not just attack, you know, people of color who are in office, like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who are at least putting forward proposals and ideas.

HAYES: Well, that`s the other thing that I think has been interesting in this week, and I don`t think Schultz is that interesting, what I think is a reaction to Schultz is quite interesting, Brian, which is to Zerlina`s point, is just how sort of substantively rich the early parts of this primary have been. I mean, when you look at Kamala Harris and Medicare for all, and the big sort of tax cut that she is proposing, and Elizabeth Warren`s wealth tax, there is a lot already on the table sort of substantively about what the vision that these candidates have.

BUETLER: Right. And Howard Schultz is free to enter that primary. And I think if he had decided that that he wanted to run as a Democrat, I don`t think a lot of people would have given him a very good chance of winning, but he wouldn`t have engendered all this backlash if he really thought that he could persuade everyone that Elizabeth Warren was wrong and that Kamala Harris` tax cut didn`t go far enough, or whatever, he could have entered the fold and tried to persuade the Democratic Party primary voters that the party had veered too far to the left and they should tack more to the center.

He made the choice not to do that, and he has made the choice in this context of trying to say that the entire Democratic Party is on board with the 70 percent top income tax bracket and Elizabeth Warren`s wealth tax, and he is calling those things unAmerican. I mean, he just attacking the Democratic Party. And it seems pretty clear that the reason that you do that is that you know that you can`t win, but maybe you can bring the Democratic Party to heal if you threaten to do what happened in 2016 all over again by throwing the election to Trump.

HAYES: Well, and here`s the question for me. When I think Schultz -- so Democrats have united with a lot of anger at Schultz. And I actually think in some ways it`s been a little bit overstated that because I don`t think he is going to be that big of an influence, frankly -- you know what I mean, like...

MAXWELL: We`re not overreacting here. I`m saying is that like that`s a bad idea, and here are the reasons.

HAYES: Right, but what I do think is interesting, and this is one shoe that has not dropped in this race yet is some person or some group of people are going to run, try to run in the Howard Schultz lane in the primary.

MAXWELL: Yes.

HAYES: Right, like Bloomberg`s already running that. I think Terry McAuliffe who wrote that op-ed. Do -- the lane of we can`t go too far left. I`m the one who is a sensible moderate centrist. Is there a lane, is there an appetite, is there a market for that message in the primary?

MAXWELL: It depends how you package it.

HAYES: That`s a good point.

MAXWELL: And I think that, you know, I think the debate is going to be robust, but I think that you have to think about who the Democratic electorate is. It`s a little different than it used to be.

We talk about the Democratic electorate and white working class voters as if that`s the base of the Democratic Party. It is not anymore. I think as America and the emerging majorities of people of color grow and grow and are a political force to be reckoned with, the parties actually, the policies that they put forward, will align with what the voters are asking for. That`s I thought how it was supposed to work.

HAYES: I mean, I think the only person, Brian, who can pull off that lane actually ironically enough is Biden.

BUETLER: I mean, Biden has name recognition. He is well liked in the party, and he`s been doing this for a long time. But I also don`t think that what Biden would run on would look like what Howard Schultz or Michael Bloomberg...

HAYES: Right, yes, I know -- you can`t -- what you can`t do is run on how bad the Democrats are in a Democratic primary.

BUETLER: Right. I think that what you saw in 2018 is the Democratic all- stars, they didn`t all run super far left, but in the squishy center they looked more like Beto O`Rourke who was still running for Texas on a super progressive platform.

HAYES: Right.

BUETLER: You know, I just don`t think that you`re going to get a whole lot of juice out of Democratic primary voters saying that, you know, that the no labels crew is kind of on to something, and maybe Howard Schultz has a decent critique and we should do that. I just don`t think it`s going to get anyone very far.

So I don`t even think that if Joe Biden or Terry McAuliffe get in the race, they`re going to be as tacking as far to the center as a lot of their critics imagine they will.

HAYES: Yeah, there`s not a -- and this is different, actually, than that 2016 -- what Donald Trump realized was that they hated -- they hated the Republican establishment.

MAXWELL: Right.

HAYES: The Democratic base does not hate the Democratic Party...

MAXWELL: Especially not right now after...

HAYES: The way -- Zerlina -- the Republicans do -- Zerlina Maxwell and Brian Buelter, many thanks.

That is ALL IN for this evening. “THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW” starts right now.

Good evening, Rachel.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END

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