tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC June 27, 2013 4:00pm-5:01pm PDT
richards of planned parenthood here in the building. she is in texas, a red state. what do you do? you keep fighting. you stand up no matter where you are. and if you lay out truth, people will recognize it. it may take a moment. it may be a few and then a little more and a little more. but never stop and never lower your guard, if you know you're right. remember, friend or foe, i want to know. keep them coming in. thanks for watching. i'm al sharpton. "hardball" starts right now. witness for the prosecution. let's play "hardball." good evening. leading off tonight, back on the stand. for a second day, rachel jeantel described as the prosecution's
key witness underwent a long and grueling cross-examination. zimmerman is accused of murdering the unarmed trayvon martin last year. trying to discredit the young woman who was the last person to speak to martin moments before he was killed. and in fact as he did yesterday, west exposed a number of inconsistencies in numerous efforts to describe what happened that night. but what is not as clear is whether west managed to successfully challenge the core of her story, that george zimmerman stalked trayvon martin moments before their fatal confrontation. joining me now, msnbc legal analyst lisa bloom, and former florida circuit court judge alex ferrer. judge alex, is she as integral to the prosecution of this case as we have all made her out today? >> she absolutely is. she is the key witness. she was talking to him at the time of the confrontation, or right up to the confrontation.
she provides a lot of detail she would love the jury to believe. she testifies the fact that trayvon martin says to zimmerman when he supposedly approaches him, why you following me? and zimmerman's response, what are you doing here? it kind of buttresses their claim that zimmerman is the one that went over to check out what trayvon martin is doing. she adds some additional language that we hadn't really heard before where she says right before the phone went dead, she hears trayvon saying get off, get off, or get off me, or words to that effect, which certainly implies that he's been jumped by george zimmerman, which goes along with the state's prosecution theory as well. >> lisa, anecdotally i can support something i've heard you repeatedly on the today show and on msnbc, and that is that her credibility is in the eyes of the beholder. on the radio today, it broke on racial lines. i said i thought yesterday she was a weak witness, and i was
overwhelmed by calls from african-americans today who said you're completely misreading the situation. >> yes. overwhelmingly, on social media and elsewhere, a lot of people have expressed support for her. they feel she was almost abused on the witness stand. it was harassment, too much, not fair, people don't understand her. i look at it through the framework of a trial. this is a murder trial. every witness who tells a story is going to be cross-examined in the same way she was, yet she has elicited a lot of sympathy. she's 19-year-old young woman who just finished her junior year of high school. she cannot read cursive handwriting, she had to admit, even though she signed a letter that was written in cursive by a friend. this is a young woman with perhaps some learning issues, and as you say, there's a strong sent inspect her favor. >> if it's the case that it breaks along racial lines in terms of how people interpret her testimony we need to remind folks this is a jury of six women and no african-americans.
>> that's absolutely true, but i -- i don't think that this jury is going to say, well, we're white and zimmerman is white and we're goal along those lines, but they are going to have a harder time understanding the cultural differences that the audience out there is understanding. that is absolutely true. she did herself a lot of disfavors yesterday because of her attitude and the way she came off on the stand, because if the jury doesn't like her, they're less likely to believe her. they may not like her and still say i believe her, but you don't want that acting against you if you're the prosecution. you want the jury to like and relate to your witnesses. they may have had a hard time yesterday. an easier time today. >> i can add to that that you can like her and still not believe her. >> that is true. >> i think where the defense is going with her testimony is she was trying to help the martin family, and that's why her story has evolved, because she felt sorry for them. initially she said she thought this was just a fight and that's why she didn't call the police. now she says he's being stalked and his final words were "get off, get off." and so i think the defense can characterize this in a way that
is respectful to her but also makes their point. >> in this morning's testimony, don west tried to establish a string of inconsistencies in her descriptions of events. here's one. >> you lied because you wanted to give a plausible answer to ms. fulton as to why you didn't go the wake? >> yes, sir. but on the april 2nd interview, you were, in fact, under oath. >> yes, sir. >> you knew that. >> yes, sir. >> you made a decision because of how difficult the situation you had just been put in, you decided to lie about going to the hospital rather than say something that might be painful? >> yes, sir. >> lisa bloom, if likability is a factor in this, i think that
don west and rachel jeantel have some degree of parity. i thought he went too far today, too long-winded and could have shut down that cross-examination a lot sooner. >> well, he was not concise, and you lose people's attention, and you lose their affection when you repeat the same point over and over again. that's what he did. listen, i'm a trial lawyer. i'm watching this case every minute of the day. i can make a list of all the discrepancies that he got out of her, but i don't think most people, even the jurors are watching that closely and analyzing that closely. most people are watching this case, sitting back and trying to get the point. and you just lose the forest through the trees. >> he'll bring it back together in closing. he'll get up there and say remember these discrepancies? one of the things that stood out to me, she's a crucial witness, they pick her up along with trayvon martin's mother. and mr. crump, the family lawyer, take them over to trayvon's mother's house and sit there's and gives an interview to the police. and basically, this is an eyewitness or an ear witness to
the murder, okay. they're interviewing her with the victim's mother sitting there. i've never heard that in a criminal prosecution. no police department would ever take the witness they want to interview to decide if they're going to prosecute and bring the family of the victim and sit they want next to them. it really gives a bad light to the prosecution. >> at another point in the trial, the defense attorney in this case, don west, tried to poke holes in rachel's description of every on what she heard on her end of the phone during the last call with trayvon martin. let's listen. >> so the last thing you heard was some kind of noise like something hitting somebody? >> trayvon got hit. trayvon got hit. >> you don't know that, do you? >> no, sir. >> you don't know that trayvon got hit. >> he could have. he had to. >> you don't know that at that moment trayvon didn't take his fist and drive it into george zimmerman's face. >> please lower your voice. >> do you? >> no, sir. >> lisa, in her testimony she
also related that she heard the sound that she ascribed to wet grass. that was one of those moments yesterday when all of the sudden my antenna went up, and that sounds like the sort of thing you pull from a police report or a media report. and again, phone callers to me said you're being too harsh on her. >> well, there is two different languages being spoke here. rachel jeantel speaks the language people outside of the courtroom speak. in a courtroom, you have to be very, very precise. what was the sound? you didn't know he was hit because you couldn't see anything. you're making assumption. most of news normal conversation make assumption all the time. she is not familiar with the courtroom and the rules of evidence, and of course don west. >> alex, listen to this. let's everybody watch a bit of her testimony so we know what i'm talking about. >> are you saying that the sound of west grass, as you describe it yesterday, as you describe it today, you're saying you believe that it was people rolling
around on the ground? >> yes, sir. >> and what is that based on? what is the sound you heard that led to that conclusion? >> i really don't know how to describe it. >> alex, how do you read that? >> it's a fair question. when you is say something like i heard the sound of wet grass, he's going to come after you and say what does that sound like and how have you ever heard it to say over the phone, in the background you're going to be able to tell people are struggling. the thing here is, this is the prosecution's side of the case. this is the part of the case where we should be going wow, this is a powerful case against george zimmerman, because when they get to the defense side, it's going to eat away at the prosecution side. and every witness the prosecution has called has given a point for the prosecution and maybe a point or two for the defense. so they're in a tough position. >> to that issue, lisa, i believe i'm getting the entire
defense version of this without george zimmerman testifying. and i forget what the word choice was, cold dock or sucker punch? >> sucker punch. >> you know what i'm talking about. there was that moment when don west in a question to her said what if there had been a sucker punch thrown at george zimmerman? i thought jeez, zimmerman doesn't have to take the stand now because the jury just heard this. >> i think you're putting the finger on one of the interesting issues, will george zimmerman testify? i think the defense wants to keep him off the stand, because they don't want him to be cross-examined. he has inconsistencies in the stories he told. he wrote out a police statement right after the incident. he submitted to a videotaped interrogation the next day. and there are inconsistencies. perhaps they're innocent. perhaps he was telling lies. i think the defense would love to get the videotaped statement in or even the handwritten statement in. they may not be able to do that themselves because it could be hearsay. the prosecution may get it in. all of this is a little bit of legal gamesmanship, but it remains to be seen. i think the prosecution wants to force the defense's hand.
>> alex, at the end of today's testimony, it was the woman who logged the 911 call where in the background you heard the call for help. >> right. as you well know, the expert testimony was disallowed, yet the jury has heard that tape repeatedly. i think that's significant. i think they will each bring their lay experience and try to analyze who is crying for help. that could be determinative. >> if they could identify who is crying for help, it absolutely is outcome determinative, end of the case. it was right to keep the expert testimony out. it was not reliable testimony. what you're left with this is this wailing on the tape, which is very impactful. the jury -- i'm sure the jury reacted to it, and then you'll hear say von's trayvon's parents get on and say that's my child, even though tracy has said in the past that's not trayvon's voice, he's now on board and maybe he reconsidered it. neither of them have probably
ever heard their child screaming in a panicked stage. so how much weight will the jury give to that? i don't know. it may end up being a wash. >> lisa, the lawyering in this case, are mark o'mara and don west involved in a good cop/bad cop routine? >> that's an interesting perspective. i don't think so. i think they're both fine defense lawyers. certainly don west has made his mistakes, the knock-knock joke. >> ridiculous. >> he tends to run too long, too long-winded. but he is making some really important points, and he is trying to save his client from 25 years to life in prison. so he's doing his job. >> it's really great to see both of you. i appreciate you being here. >> it was a pleasure. coming up, the fallout from the gay marriage decision. but this isn't 2004 when republicans were able to use it as a wedge issue. against john kerry. next year, democrats may be able to ride the tide of public opinion to make gay marriage work for them. also, late today, the senate passed the immigration reform
bill, 68-32, and now comes the hard part. is there any chance the house will go along? we can also agree it was great theater, the fill buster in texas that presented the bill that would shut down most of the state's abortion clinics. but the bill is likely pass next month anyway. the question, will abortion rights advocates around the country be inspired to copy what they saw on tuesday night. ever wonder how supreme court reporters get their hands on decisions? so fast? as it turns out, it takes a village, a real fast village. this is "hardball," the place for politics. i want to make things more secure. [ whirring ] [ dog barks ] i want to treat more dogs. ♪ our business needs more cases. [ male announcer ] where do you want to take your business? i need help selling art. [ male announcer ] from broadband to web hosting to mobile apps, small business solutions from at&t have the security you need to get you there. call us. we can show you how at&t solutions can help you do what you do... even better. ♪
"that starts with one of the world's most advancedy," can help you do what you do... even better. distribution systems," "and one of the most efficient trucking networks," "with safe, experienced drivers." "we work directly with manufacturers," "eliminating costly markups," "and buy directly from local farmers in every region of the country." "when you see our low prices, remember the wheels turning behind the scenes, delivering for millions of americans, everyday. "dedication: that's the real walmart" the manhunt no nsa leaker edward snowden has generated plenty of attention. one person who clearly doesn't think it's all that big of a deal, president obama. listen to what the president said about the hunt for snowden. >> no, i'm not going to be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker. >> the president said he hasn't spoken to the presidents of russia or china about snowden,
first of all, i think the supreme court ruling yesterday was not simply a victory for the lgbt community. i think it was a victory for american democracy. i believe at the root of who we are as a people as americans is the basic precept that we are all equal under the law. welcome back to "hardball." that was president obama this morning reacting to yesterday's historic decision from the supreme court overturning a major part of the defense of marriage act. speaker of the house john boehner certainly had a more muted response. >> well, as you're probably
aware, i was disappointed in the ruling yesterday. i believe in traditional marriage, but there are people on both sides of this issue with very heartfelt feelings about it, and i respect those views. the court made its decision. no plans at this point in terms of how the house would move ahead on this. >> now, while boehner's response was moderate, the reaction from his party has been anything but. tim huelskamp said he plans to introduce a federal amendment. to define marriage as between one man and one woman. former arkansas governor mike huckabee reacted to the news by tweeting, quote, my thoughts on the scotus ruling that determine that same-sex marriage was okay, jesus wept. all this could be a problem for
republicans as americans seem to be growing more comfortable with the idea of same-sex marriage. many republican politicians seem any going out of step. "the washington post" put it this way, less than a decade ago, the republicans considered the issue to rally conservatives and put democrats on the defensive. today, although a majority of republicans continue to oppose same-sex marriage, republicans leaders and candidates are on the defensive. their position mace not have changed, but many of them are silent on the issue, particularly in the context of political campaigns. history is moving against republicans on this. david axelrod, a former senior adviser to president obama, now an msnbc senior political analyst. john feehery is a republican strategist. david, you have been around the track. have you ever seen a wedge issue jump aisles like this before? >> no. it's moved very quickly. you know, what i was struck by today, i was watching the vote on immigration. two-thirds of the republicans in the senate opposed immigration reform.
you see republicans on the wrong side of public opinion on this issue. you see the republicans mounting campaigns to restrict a woman's right to choose, and you look at what happened in 2012 where they got beaten so badly among latinos, among young people, among women. and you have to ask yourself, what are they looking at? what did they learn here? because it seems like they're just digging a deeper hole with a lot of constituencies around this country. john feehery, i have a scenario in my head. i see a whole crop of akins, murdoch, angles, and how did the republican party prevent against the emergence of those sort of candidates? >> well, i think what they have to do is try to do a better job of picking the right winners in the primaries, try to cultivate people who have some vast
experience, not only business experience, but also governing experience and have them vetted in campaigns. i don't think that's necessarily a big problem. and i think that this ruling obviously is a jump off. it throws it back to the states there are 36 states that have on the books right now laws against same-sex marriage. so i think that the red states are going to get redder. i think the blue states are going to get bluer. and in the national election, i don't disagree that a republican candidate has to understand that they want to be competitive in blue states, they have to calibrate their message. i think for a lot of fundraising for republicans, they need to be careful on this issue, because there's a huge fundraising potential with the gay community. >> today this press conference in senegal, president obama made some news suggesting that the overturning doma should be applied to all 50 states. >> it's my personal belief, but i'm speaking as a president, as opposed as a lawyer, that if
you've been married in massachusetts, and you move someplace else, you're still married. and that under federal law, you should be able to obtain the benefits. of any lawfully married couple. >> david, john feehery mentions those three dozen or so states where same-sex marriage is nevertheless banned, even in the aftermath of what we went through yesterday. so how active should the president become in championing a turn-about of the law in those states? >> well, he's certainly spoken out on it. he has done it here in illinois where the illinois house has a bill pending that along with the senate that already passed it would bring same-sex marriage here to illinois. but the one thing that struck me about what john was saying is he is right, of course, that a republican nominee for president in 2016 would have to be more sensitive to these issues. the question is whether that
kind of candidate could actually get through the primaries, because the same forces that you talked about, michael, are the ones who are in control of the nominating process for president. so the paradox for the republican party is the kind of candidates who can win nationally can't get through their nominating process. >> david, to that point, last night new jersey governor chris christie, one of those candidates perhaps was asked his response to the supreme court decision. and christie, who supported civil unions in the past, last year vetoed a marriage equality bill in his state. and he had strong words for what the supreme court did yesterday. here they are. >> i don't think the ruling was appropriate. i think it was wrong. and i thought that justice kennedy's opinion in many respects was incredibly insulting to those people. 340-some members of congress who voted for the defense of marriage act. and bill clinton basically said the only reason they passed that bill was to demean people. that's a heck of a thing to say about bill clinton and about the
republican congress back in the '90s. it's just another example of judicial supremacy, rather than having the government run by the people we actually vote for. so i thought it was a bad decision. >> john feehery, how do you interpret those words? i interpret them as chris christie wanting to be one with the gop base, especially because i'm mindful of the fact that there was an opportunity for him to align the special election that will feature cory booker with his own general election, and he opted not. to me, it looks like a second sign that he is really going in 2016. >> i don't disagree with that, michael. i thought it was very clever of the governor to talk about it as judicial activism, because i think he is talking more on process grounds and less on, you know, the whole equality argument, which is a bad argument for republicans. i think that he is going to run, and i think he can be very competitive. and to david's point, i do think that if you look at mitt romney and john mccain the last two nominating cycles, i mean, they were the most moderate candidates of the bunch, other
than jon huntsman. and i think they were the most electable. they just ran bad campaigns once they got the nomination. it's not necessarily a problem of getting the most electable one through the process, the problem is making sure you run a decent campaign once you get the nomination. >> thank you, both. i wish we had more time. thank you, david axelrod and john feehery. who won the democrats dubious distinction of being the most clueless member of congress? that's next in the side show. and a reminder, you can listen to my radio show weekday morns 9:00 a.m. eastern on potus channel 124. this is "hardball," the place for politics. [ female announcer ] love.
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to your tv screen pretty quickly. in part, that's thanks to a few interns and hopefully a decent pair of running shoes. here goes. take a look at the doma decision being hand delivered to nbc's pete williams by an amazingly deft intern for scotus blog named dan stein. >> coming through, coming through. >> and there you have it. doesn't pete seem totally at ease? dan the intern and pete williams were both on the today show to look back. >> first of all, it's good open field rung there is speed, lateral movement. you kept your head up. you protected the document, which was very good. how are you feeling? >> feeling great. i had to do a little bit of stretches this morning, try to loosen up a little bit. a little sore, obviously these aren't running shoes. >> exactly. >> it's your running outfit. >> not only did he have to dodge people with signs and strollers and everything else, remember, these were the hottest days of the year down here. i was perspiring just standing
still. so he must have lost about ten pounds in the last few days. >> next, there was no shortage of jubilation across the country when doma was deemed unconstitutional. but for a message to opponents of same-sex marriage, people that think it will cause a threat to marriage between a man and a woman, we turn to stephen colbert. >> the defense of marriage act is dead. [ cheering ] yes. like my audience, i clap when i'm afraid. so straight, married people, listen up. if a gay charges your marriage, you're going to want to puff yourself up, make yourself seem bigger, try to frighten it off by talking in a firm, loud voice by pleated denim or jimmy buffett. it's going to be okay. it will scare them off. doma is unconstitutional as a deprivation of liberty of persons that is protected under the fifth amendment. oh, please.
i find it hard to believe that there are amendments after the second. sounds made up. next, members of the democratic congressional committee campaign cast their ballots for which their republican colleagues, which of them is as they put it the most clueless. but first, some highlights of their video mash-up of contenders. [ twilight theme playing ] >> pregnancy from rape that results in abortion after the beginning of the sixth month are very rare. >> when you say it's not a man and a woman anymore, then why not have three men and one woman, or four women and one man? or why not, you know, somebody has a love for an animal? >> father had a ranch. we used to hire 50 to 60 wetbacks. >> do you believe he is a muslim?
>> i don't know. i really don't know. we don't have enough information about this president. >> that doesn't mean there aren't some other explanations on how they might have announced that by telegram from kenya. >> now according to politico, members of the dccc really did cast their ballots at a private din their week. who was voted the most clueless republican? that would be iowa congressman steve king, noted in the video for using language like illegal aliens, and suggesting that president obama's birth certificate may have been telegrammed from kenya to hawaii when he was born. so good news for steve king. up next, the senate passes immigration reform, but how much press is now on the house to do the same? this is "hardball," the place for politics. there is a pursuit we all share. a better life for your family, a better opportunity for your business, a better legacy to leave the world. we have always believed in this pursuit, striving to bring insight to every investment, and integrity to every plan.
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crowds holding prayer sessions outside the hospital where nelson mandela remains in critical yet stable condition. a judge in massachusetts has denied bail for former new england patriots player aaron hernandez. he is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of a friend. and friends and family gathered in new york city for the funeral of actor james gandolfini. he died of a heart attack last week in italy. he was 51 years old. i'm veronica de la cruz. let's get you back to "hardball." we're back. late today with vice president biden presiding, the senate passed a massive immigration overhaul bill. the vote 68-32. about a dozen republicans crossed party lines and voted for the measure, no doubt thanks to a recent amendment which adds 20,000 new agents along the border in addition to 700 miles of fencing. despite that, the bill failed to win any support among the republican leadership.
now the spotlight turns to the gop-controlled house, where reform faces a much greater challenge. in a statement praising the senate's work, president obama said now is the time when opponents will try their hardest to pull this bipartisan effort apart so they can stop compromise reform from becoming a reality. we cannot let that happen. senator robert menendez is a democrat from new jersey. he is a member of the senate's gang of eight, which crafted the legislation. senator, i made reference to the fact that there will be 20,000 new border agents. someone has noted that that's one every one thousand or so feet. what else is left to offer to accommodate those in the gop-controlled house? i thought security was their beef. >> well, it certainly was one of the critical elements that got us to 14 republican votes in the senate. it's the most significant border protection efforts. you know, we're willing to listen to the house's views. we'd love to see them take our bill. it was created through bipartisan compromise. it had bipartisan votes.
over 2/3 of the senate voted for this legislation. so we look forward to the house meeting the same challenge that we met in the senate and responding to the american people's desire to see immigration reform. >> house speaker john boehner isn't impressed by the senate vote. this is speaker boehner earlier today. >> the house is not going to take up and vote on whatever the senate passes. we're going to do our own bill through regular order, and it will be legislation that reflects the will of our majority, and the will of the american people. >> in "the washington post" reports, quote, house republican deputy whip peter roskam said thursday morning the senate immigration bill likely won't come to a vote in the house, labeling it a pipe dream. the house has no capacity to move that bill in its entirety, he said. are there areas of reconciliation, areas of agreement between that which they envision and what you have already passed? or are you just not sure what they have on their mind? >> well, look, i'm not sure what
they have in their mind. and look, the house can have its own process. we'll get to it. i'd like them to take up our senate bill. as i said, it's bipartisan, strong vote. the speaker may not be impressed, but we rarely get 60 votes in the united states senate these days for any momentous piece of legislation or anything that might be considered controversial. we got 68. that's more than you need to ratify a treaty for the united states. so it's an incredible vote. we respect the house's process. the question is does the house leadership want to get to yes? does the house leadership agree that as one of the core elements of immigration reform in addition to security, there must be a pathway to citizenship. and if the answer to those are yes, then we can ultimately get to a bipartisan bill that we can pass in both houses and send finally to the president. i hope that the leadership in the house, particularly on the republican side that controls the majority will allow the house to truly work its will. because if you insist on a
majority of the majority as speaker boehner has said, that is a minority of the house of representatives, and a minority should not dictate the future of millions of lives of people in this country, the security of the nation and the prosperity of america. >> thank you, senator robert menendez. >> thank you. >> we turn to howard fineman. howard, i love the politics by this by way of example within the senate, marco rubio and ted cruz being on opposite sides of this issue. what is your analysis? >> well, my analysis is that the house leadership, the house republican leadership i think in theory, in somewhere in their political brains would like to pass a bill. but they've got the tea party to deal with in the house, and if they come up with any kind of bill at all, it's going to be hugely different, obviously, from the senate bill.
exactly how i don't know. i think the republican bill will have such a complex and difficult pathway to citizenship that it will barely be that at all. that seems to be the only kind of thing that the house could pass. but i think -- i get the sense from talking to some people in and around the house leadership that at least in theory they do want a bill, because they're not stupid politically, michael. if they read karl rove and "the wall street journal" today, karl rove said looking at the numbers, republicans need hispanics. not all immigrants are hispanics, but this is a huge issue. the republicans have to get it off the table somehow. they know that. all but the heart of the tea party know that. >> but they'll win the battle and lose the war, as you make reference to the numbers, the demographic shift in this country. >> right. >> we're going to do a segment in just a couple of minutes about the purple nature of the state of texas. >> exactly. >> and the power of momentum is never going back. >> and it's no accident that karl rove, who is sort of one of
the leaders of the republican establishment, you know, made his bones in texas. he came up in texas. he managed george w. bush, who got over 40% of the hispanic vote hen he ran for reelection for governor. got over 40% when he ran for reelection in as president. karl rove and the people around him were trying to build a republican party through the bush family and others that would reach out to hispanics. but that's utterly different from what most of the tea party people are doing. now, the tea party is not only by necessarily an anti-immigration party. but it's kind of taken on that tenor in the house. and it's a looming disaster for the republicans. and anybody with any sense, and i actually put john boehner that category, know that. >> howard fineman, thank you as always. >> sure, michael. take care. up next, that dramatic fill buster in texas. will abortion right advocates across the country use the same playbook that we saw tuesday night? you're watching "hardball," the
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final vote on the bill just long enough that the lieutenant governor couldn't sign it before a critical midnight deadline. and make no mistake, this was no ordinary filibuster. procedural rules dictated that she couldn't eat, couldn't use the bathroom or even lean on her desk for the ten hours. at one point, a colleague helped her put on a back brace which republicans quickly denounced as a violation of the rules. but while davis and her throngs of supporters which overwhelmed capitol police that night succeeded on tuesday, the victory has been short-lived. governor rick perry has ordered a special session in the texas legislature for monday. the message is clear. no amount of procedural heroics will kill this bill a second time. so what does it all mean for the future of women's rights? for women in politics, for the political fate of texas, and even the nation? cecile richards is the president of planned parenthood. nia malik henderson is a report were "the washington post."
cecile, a real significant factor is the shutting down of virtually every abortion linnik the state. >> that's exactly right. that's what you're seeing is an outrage shutting down women's health centers. of course this comes on the heels of governor perry and the legislature ending services through the women's health program, cutting off women from breast cancer screening through planned parenthood, vetoing the equal pay act. this is sort of the final nail. i think that's what you saw this week is that folks simply have had enough. >> the bill passes, texas will become the 13th state to impose a ban on abortion after 20 weeks. at a new poll from the national journal shows that more people across the nation favor that kind of law than oppose it. in an interview on cbs this morning, wendy davis addressed the reality that this bill will likely pass. >> there was an incredible focus put on what is happening here in texas. women and men across texas are in an uproar about it.
and i don't expect that their concerns on this issue are going to go away with the passage of the law. and i think there will be political consequences in the future as people exercise their opinion about this issue at the ballot box. box. >> nia malika, are you surprised by the polling data we just shared where a majority of americans say 20 weeks seems like the right number? >> not really. it's fairly close to what roe v. wade sets out as well, 22, 24 weeks. in fact, not many abortions happen after 20 weeks. when they do, it's usually because the mother is in deep distress and it's a painful decisions mothers have to make to get abortions. i think it's something like 2% k of abortions happen after 20 weeks. what we see from this is a galvanizing effort. already ofa has been sending out messages to their supporters saying they want to fight these measures in these different states and see courts also move to block these measures to put tighter restriction on abortions in north dakota, i think, there's a measure passed that
put it at six weeks. in arkansas, it's 12 weeks. in arizona, another law passed that was at 20 weeks. and courts have very much stepped in. you have seen this wholesale shift in the antiabortion movement going from essentially waiting for a roe v. wade to be overturned by the supreme court to really chipping away at this timeframe, at these different state legislators. it's been a real battle, i think, they have successfully waged in many ways and you now see i think some backlash and a real galvanizing movement now with these women's groups. >> cecile, governor perry took a shot, direct shot at senator davis today. watch this. >> she was a teenage mother, herself. she managed to eventually graduate from harvard law school and serve in the texas senate. it's just unfortunate that she hasn't learned from her own example that every life must be given a chance to realize its full potential and that every
life matters. >> and davis responded in a statement saying "rick perry's statement is without dignity and tarnishes the why high office he holds. there are dark words that reflect a dark and negative point of view. our governor should reflect our texas values. sadly, governor perry fails that test." >> that patronizing attitude you saw about senator wendy davis who, of course, is widely respected across the aisle, it's that kind of attitude that rick perry has had toward women and that this legislature has had toward women which i think has led to the kind of mobilization you're seeing in texas. women are perfectly capable of making their own decisions. and particularly about childbearing. they and their doctors and their families. what you're seeing from rick perry and it's the same attitude he's had all along, which is somehow he knows what's best for women. >> and nia malika, texas you need hispanics and need women. one of the reasons that state is on the verge of going purple is because of the factors we're
discussing right now. >> that's right. some of the architects of obama's win, went straight to texas, essentially after his victory and started battleground texas. the problem there is that lat o latinos, while they are a growing population there, 30% of them can't vote because of their immigration status, and even the ones who are registered to vote don't show up at the polls. it's something like 40%. so that's a real challenge, but i do think we are going to see in the south more generally a real effort for democrats to really capitalize on the demographic changes that are happening. >> nia malika henderson, thank you for your time. cecile richards, nice to be with you as well. right back to "hardball" after this. i'll have a final word to offer about race relations. back, which is deposited in your fidelity account. is that it? actually... there's no annual fee and no limits on rewards. and with the fidelity cash management account debit card, you get reimbursed for all atm fees.
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let me finish tonight with this. when it comes to race relations, this past week was one that suggested things aren't getting any better. first, there was celebrity chef paula deen and a professional tailspin after acknowledging in a sworn deposition she has used the "n" word then came the start of the george zimmerman trial in which the town watchman facing second-degree murder charges for having shot trayvon martin, the words fing bunks, these a-hs always get away. the first words uttered by prosecutor john guy quoting zimmerman. next came a pair of supreme court rulings each decided by a 5-4 margin. one gutting that part of the voting rights act which requires nine states, mostly in the south, to obtain federal
clearance before tinkering with voting procedures, and another which upheld affirmative action only in narrow circumstances and only after imposing strict scrutiny. when i opined on the radio that the collection of these headlines made me realize that race relations don't seem to be improving any time soon, and might be hampered by the changing demographics of the nation, my comment prompted a noteworthy response. melissa from dallas was listening as she dropped off her seen pre-k last tuesday. i was focused on the affirmative action case. fisher versus the university of texas at austin. abigail fisher, a white woman, sued after being denied admission at u.t., claiming minorities with inferior qualifications were admitted instead. i made what i thought was a practical, political observation, if affirmative action is running out of support in 2013, imagine how hard it will be defend the necessity come 2050 when whites will collectively be a minority in comparison of people of color.
melissa responded there were more important considerations than the raw numbers in demographics. she said, "the reason affirmative action exists is because for 300 years we had legalized slavery, and then we had another 100 years of segregation based on jim crow." she thought it would be grossly premature to say that after many years of legalized discrimination based on one factor, race, it's now time to get rid of affirmative action. she told me she was only 1 of 20 or so blacks in law school at u.t. and said that there were only seven black men in the entire class that followed her in law school, the class of 2000. more important than just population data, she said, will be questions of who is running the institutions and, thereby, who is running the country. wherever we are in race relations, this week has proved that the supreme court is wrong. in the opinion released on monday neutering the voting rights act, chief justice roberts wrote that congress, "re-enacted a formula based on 40-year-old facts having no
logical relation to the present day." if only things had changed that much. 40 years later, we are not as far along as the supreme court thi thinks. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. tonight on "all in" the blue revolution. i'll tell you why the great texas filibuster might have been just the beginning of something much, much bigger. plus, on a week of huge victories for progressive america, the choice for the republican party becomes more and more clear. change or die. spoiler alert, they don't appear to be choosing to want to change. and the cross-examination of rachel jeantel, reluctant witness in the trayvon martin case is a reluctant subject of national conversation. why what p
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