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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  June 26, 2014 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT

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there's nothing -- ahhh! >> usa! good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. republicans in congress are taking a victory lap today after
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the supreme court in a unanimous decision, ruled president obama lacked a constitutional authority to appoint three members to the national labor relations board while congress was effectively, though not officially, in recess back in 2012. the ruling, which puts into question hundreds of decisions the labor board issues after those appointments, was hailed by senate minority leader mitch mcconnell as a rejection of obama's brazen power grab. by house speaker john boehner as the victory for the constitution and against president obama's aggressive overreach. now, the supreme court did not actually strike down the president's ability to make recess appointments. a presidential power that is explicitly written into the constitution. what the high court did do is deem legitimate the procedural
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gimmick republicans had used to keep the senate technically in session when most lawmakers were, in fact, out of washington and straight chilling. all this is part of the ongoing fight for position between two parties trying to game each other in a permanently obstructive washington. republicans wanted to keep the national labor relations board and the consumer financial protection bureau from functioning properly. they just didn't want it staffed. so they refused to make appointments. the president wanted, well, he wanted functional government. so he tried to get around the obstruction. to republicans, that move was yet more evidence of the tyrannical overreach of king barack obama. a man that many in the gop base want to see impeached before this is all over. and it is those rumblings bubbling up in the base that john boehner is catering to with his big announcement yesterday that he is going to sue the president over his use of executive authority. >> while the constitution makes it clear that a president's job is to faithfully execute the laws.
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in my view, the president has not faithfully executed the laws. >> it's not yet clear exactly what this lawsuit will look like, but most people see it as lit more than a stunt to satiate the impeachment-hungry republican base. they're not just saying it's a stunt here on this network. >> i think you know in your heart of hearts, this is a waste of time now. there are far more important things you guys have to be addressing than filing lawsuits past each other. by the way, rome's burning. >> gop is supposed to be opposed to waste of time lawsuits. they, the right, the infrastructure of the right have spent years and years wailing against this sort of thing. >> we have an opportunity to stop frivolous lawsuits. >> we, we have frivolous lawsuits. >> excessive and frivolous lawsuits. >> paralyzing and frivolous lawsuits. >> vicious cycle of frivolous lawsuits. >> coming from two lawyers, i can tell you we need to cut down the frivolous lawsuits. >> or ending the junk lawsuits. >> ending junk lawsuits. we get rid of the junk lawsuits. we need to do something about junk lawsuits. let's get rid of junk lawsuits. number four, end junk lawsuits.
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>> junk lawsuits. hate them. as it happens, there are many, many areas in which the president has almost certainly overreached his executive authority. this is an administration that just argued in a heavily redacted memo released to the public, the legal right to kill an american citizen without trial. administration has defended the sweeping bulk surveillance of its own citizens, both without warrant and without specific indications of suspicion of those who are caught up in the drag net. this lawsuit, the one that is forthcoming apparently from john boehner, almost certainly won't be about any of that. no, this has more to do with moves like drafting an executive order requiring private firms that get government contracts not to fire people because they're gay. and that after congress refused to take action on the same issue. that, my friends, that is a sort of tyranny republicans appear to want to go to court to stop. joining me now, dahlia lithwick, senior editor at where she covers the supreme court. you know what my favorite thing about supreme court decision day
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is, i know there's a dahlia column coming. it's my favorite thing about big decisions. sit there clicking refresh. the nlrb decision, unanimous decision, was this a surprise to you? >> yeah, if you had told me this morning at 8:00, chris, that we were going to get both canning the nlrb decision and the abortion buffer zone decision and they were going to be unanimous, both of them, i would have said you were drunk. not two decisions we thought were going to come down 9-0. a strange, strange today. today in my column, i coined the phrase faux-nanimous. >> of course, because these decisions have been made -- we had a unanimous decision yesterday as well. the decisions have been unanimous, but then they've had concurrences that basically say, here's my real feeling about this whole thing. in the case of the appointments, i mean, what struck me as strange is you got your three branches. you got your white house, you got your congress, you got your supreme court. this seemed like one of those
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fights between the white house and congress that supreme court is very careful about stepping into and yet here they did, they just charged right in. >> right. not only did they charge in, but then they proceeded because there's no precedent, right? there's -- we don't have a heap of case law about the recess appointment power. and so then it really just turns into a fight about, you know, first of all, what the word "happens" means in the recess appointments clause, but also like an even crazier fight about should we dignify what the framers would have done or should we dignify what presidents have done in fact since the time of george washington? and so it becomes this kind of strange fight about originalism but what really happens, and everybody's kind of super angry, as justice scalia writes i guess a concurrence but really a blistering dissent. it's all this kind of strange inter-nicing bickering about something that's gone on since the dawn of time. it's a deeply weird dispute. >> it also is deeply weird in the sense that the context here,
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of course, is this kind of, you know, obstruction the president's faced, in terms of filibustering of his nominee. that obstruction has been essentially fixed through an alternate means which is getting rid of the filibuster of nominees. so the original problem that the recess appointment use was meant to solve is no longer there. >> right. not only that, but we've now got a reconstituted nlrb. they'll just go back and re-hear -- we're having a big existential fight about executive power. problem, itself, is solved, and i would add there's one more valiance of weird, in the opinion, in the aggregate, gives more power to the president but also more power to the senate and to the house to block the president. it's a complete wash. >> right. >> so the court basically gives each of them an even bigger hammer to bonk each other with over a fight that's basically over and over a fight that has been going on since the dawn of time. it's really odd. >> here's -- in terms of this
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lawsuit that boehner has announced, the content of which remains to be filed so it's hard to analyze it from a legal prospective. as a general manner, congress suing the white house isn't something that happens that often or necessarily is the way that we conceive of these issues being resolved between two branches. >> right. you said before, you know, the courts are very loathed to get involved in these fights between the executive and the legislative branch. and here you have a doubly problematic thing which is boehner sort of announcing a generalized loathing of kinginess i guess is the complaint. this tyrannical president. you're not going to specify. you know, i think one of the things to really understand is that in addition to not knowing exactly what the offenses are and who has standing to bring suit as a legal matter, and the court's not wanting to get
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involved, i think you have this other problem which is, you know, are you really going to sue about the fact that you've obstructed everything the president has done? >> right. right. >> it seems like not the smartest tactical move, either. >> dahlia lithwick from read her piece on today's buffer zone decision which is up now which we're going to talk about in a moment. thanks so much. overreach is not just for the executive branch. supreme court today unanimously struck down a massachusetts law establishing a 35-foot protective buffer zone around abortion clinics. in mccullen versus coakley, the court tried to -- make a distinction between harassment on one hand and so-called counseling on the other. keep in mind the supreme court, itself, is public property and nonetheless, it does, indeed, have a buffer zone. in fact, look carefully at this aerial photo courtesy of naral pro-choice massachusetts comparing the supreme court buffer zone which is rather large to the buffer zone that the supreme court unanimously struck down. the black line encompassing the entire plaza in front of the supreme court building is the supreme court's buffer zone and the itty bitty red line
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underneath is a 35 foot buffer zone the court struck down today. 35 feet. that's all. anyone wants to get into the clinic still has to pass whoever gathered outside the buffer zone to protest. you can't go up to the supreme court's doorstep, not even for so-called quiet persuasion or counseling. you can't tap, tap on the windows of the justice's car door windows like protesters routinely do to women trying to access clinics. you can't go up to the justice every day with a bunch of people and say something like, may i take a moment to talk to you about your majority opinion in citizens united? court says safety concerns for health clinics are protected other laws. in a 2013 survey, the national abortion federation found nearly 90% had patient who were concerned about their safety. more than 80% called law enforcement because of concerns about safety, access, or criminal activity. in the past 40 years, abortion providers have seen eight murders, 17 attempted murders, 42 bombings, 181 acts of arson,
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399 invasions, almost 1,500 acts of vandalism, and almost 2,500 acts of trespassing. 4 kidnappings and 550 acts of stalking. imagine how big the supreme court's buffer zone would be if eight federal judges had been murdered in the past 40 years by anti-court terrorists. if federal court buildings had been bombed 42 times, set on fire 181 times, what kind of buffer zones would those justices want for themselves? joining me now, martha coakley. she's a democratic attorney general for massachusetts. what did the court get wrong? they unanimously found that your arguments were insufficient, that you are unduly restricting free speech. what did they get wrong? >> well, it is a little ironic, chris, as you pointed out that somehow, you know, the donning of a black robe lets them say, do as we say, not as we do. particularly this is about the rights of women who have constitutionally protected rights to access health care, to enter freely, to not be intimidated or harassed or have
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to worry about being intimidated or harassed. >> public sidewalks with public places. it's the place where our great civic democracy takes place. why can't i stand outside any building i want to on a public sidewalk and express my first amendment rights if that place happens to be a clinic that provides abortion? >> well, because we've had a history of violence in massachusetts, a history of trying to do more narrowly tailored ways to balance the right. as the court acknowledged we have a right to protect safety and the women have a constitutionally protected right to access health care. so this decision was particularly disheartening, particularly because our legislature worked hard and long to get that balance. it's worked very well. we believe it's been effective. so the decision, itself, creates some bizarre, well, you know, this is content neutral, but we think you've overly burdened
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speech. >> there was a previous case, colorado case law in 2000 which basically made this 100-foot bubble around -- in that zone you couldn't get closer than eight feet to people to talk to them or to counsel them or to tell them you thought they were doing something horrific. the court upheld that. they struck down your law. your -- in the massachusetts record, you have police testimony saying we tried to do the eight-foot thing, but we're ending up, like, chasing billiard balls around the place trying to enforce this and it's unenforceable. >> exactly. our floating buffer zone didn't work. this particular statute was a carefully crafted way in which we could balance all the interests involved. it worked. it was effective. it was predictable. people knew where they could go, what they could do. striking down this law seems to me now to say, you have to wait until someone's hurt or someone's been interfered with and we will do that. we are prepared to go back to the legislature.
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we're prepared to do whatever we need to do to make sure women in massachusetts have access to it. >> quickly, as a matter of fact, did protests go away after you passed this law? >> no. we still had people there able to speak and occasionally people would hear them and talk to them. protests were still -- and still do. they'll be happening tonight. they'll be happening on saturday. all across massachusetts. >> attorney general of massachusetts martha coakley, thank you so much. >> thank you, chris. last night on "all in" we brought you a special investigative piece about a murder that disappeared in chicago. tonight we're going to tell you about a twist to that story. you do not want to miss it. stay with us.
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coming up tonight, "all in america" continues. we're in north carolina. birthplace of the progressive moral mondays movement. where we've made a surprising discovery. plus, i had the chance to sit down with texas state senator and democratic candidate for governor, wendy davis. one year after her epic 11-hour-long filibuster at the texas statehouse. stay tuned for that.
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the police report indicates the body of tiara groves was found naked and decomposing with evidence suggesting she'd been bound and gagged. the chicago police department did confirm to "all in" that the tiara groves case was reclassified from a homicide to a noncriminal death investigation. >> put it back as a homicide, get back on their job. reclassify that and get back on their job. >> last night, we brought you our special "all in" investigation about a murder in the city of chicago that
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disappeared without any real explanation. 20-year-old tiara grove's body was found in a warehouse on the city's west side last summer. her death certificate reads homicide to this day. as far as the chicago police are concerned the tiara groves case was only a homicide for a few months before it was reclassified as a noncriminal death investigation. there's a little wrinkle to that story we didn't talk about last night. "chicago" magazine reports, a lieutenant overseeing the groves case reclassified the homicide investigation as a noncriminal death investigation. a producer working for "all in" got a look at that police department report. and lieutenant responsible for reclassifying the groves case is, as "chicago" magazine first reported, a man named dennis walsh. it's a name that might be familiar to chicago crime reporters. you see, in 2004, richard r.j. vanecko, a nephew of then-chicago mayor daley punched
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a man named david koschman, fell, hit his head and died several days later. it didn't surface again until after the "sun-times" began looking into the matter and after chicago police ended their initial investigation without charging daley's nephew with a crime. "sun-times" later reported, "the file had been missing for months, possibly years when it mysteriously turned up one summer's night three years ago on a shelf in the police station at belmont and western. officer who reported finding it, dennis walsh." walsh, according to the "sun-times," has been tied to four instances of missing items. joining us, the go-to reporter on this case. tim novak. tim, walk me through this case. this incident happens outside a bar, and what happens next? >> there's two groups of people that encounter each other on the street back ten years ago. words are exchanged. the biggest guy in the other group throws a punch and knocks the littlest guy in the other group to ground. he cracks his head open, dies 11 days later.
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the guy who threw the punch fled the scene and was never arrested until we started doing our stories three years ago. >> you guys start looking into it, and what do you find when you start looking into it? >> we find a case there's more peculiar. there were people who were never interviewed. police never canvassed the area for witnesses, never looked for surveillance tape. they never visited the victim's mother in the hospital. the case was just allowed to die on the vine and it remained an unsolved homicide for seven years. >> and what role did dennis walsh play in all this? >> well, dennis walsh has a couple of roles in the case. back in, ten years ago when the case happened, he was a lieutenant working the police district where the crime occurred that evening. we're not quite sure whether he was on duty or not. the police have never said that. but then when the case was re-investigated following our
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investigation three years ago, mr. walsh had become lieutenant overseeing all the detectives on the north side of the city. he is involved in several missing files in this case that disappear and reappear, and finally it turned out that he had taken some of those files to his house. >> wait a second, he took police report, police files to his house? >> yes, we're not quite sure for how long he had them in his house, but he did take them home three years ago for a brief period of time before they were turned back over to investigators. >> this is a police report that has to do with an alleged crime, a possible murder, in which the nephew of the mayor figures in that alleged murder? >> well, at this point it's not an alleged crime. the mayor's nephew pled guilty to manslaughter back in january of this year. ten years after the incident occurred. so he has now admitted that he did throw the punch that killed this young man, and the case had been classified as a homicide.
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it was downgraded to involuntary manslaughter when daley's nephew pled guilty. >> when you're someone who's worked with the chicago police department and reported on chicago police department for many years in that city, i'm just curious your understanding of the "chicago" magazine report, allegations from several members of the city council that they don't believe the stats are on the up and up. and you're someone who's reported on this department for years. what is your sense? >> well, the statistics that the police department keeps have been questioned for decades. back in the '80s, mayor jane burn was accused of killing crime by reclassifying crime. so this notion that crimes are reclassified for whatever reason, it comes around every few years. >> has there ever been any
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professional sanction for mr. walsh given the roles that he played which taking a police file home, my sense is, is a violation of the code of conduct for officers. >> yes, it is a violation of the code of conduct. mr. walsh is one of six police officers who remain under investigation by the city's inspector general for their role in the cover-up of the david koschman case. police actually covered it up twice. they covered it up in '04 and covered it up again in '11. so mr. walsh is playing a center role in that investigation. >> so he is currently under investigation from the inspector general for his role in allegedly covering up what has now been determined to be a homicide or it was downgraded, involuntary manslaughter. the plea. tim novak from the "chicago
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sun-times." thanks so much. coming up, my conversation with texas state senator and democratic candidate for governor, wendy davis. plus a special sneak peek at tomorrow night's "all in america." that's ahead. to map their manufacturings at process with sticky notes and string, yeah, they were a little bit skeptical. what they do actually is rocket science. high tech components for aircraft and fighter jets. we're just their bankers, right? but financing from ge capital also comes with expertise from across ge. in this case, our top lean process engineers.
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block, it's law now. at least 21 abortion clinics have closed with more to come. wendy davis is now the democratic nominee for governor. but by any metric, her campaign is struggling. she staged her rally last night to commemorate the one-year anniversary of that filibuster and inject much needed energy into her gubernatorial bid. i got a chance to talk to wendy davis yesterday and started by asking her looking back after a year in which she seemed to distance herself from the abortion issue, what was that filibuster all about? >> it was about fighting for people. fighting to make sure that people's voices were heard. and as i said that morning when i began the day, it was about giving voice to so many people who had signed up to testify in committee. only to be turned away and told that their stories had become repetitive. i wanted to make sure that people across the state who were so concerned about reproductive
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rights had their stories told. >> there's a process question here about people's voices being heard, then there's a substance question here which is the actual legislation. >> sure. >> i mean, just to be clear -- >> absolutely. >> -- you really opposed that piece of legislation that has closed down these clinics and made it difficult for women seeking reproductive health services. >> right. since the bill was passed and only a couple of provisions have been put into effect at this point in time, we have already seen just over half of the clinics in texas close. and these were clinics that weren't only providing abortion services. they were clinics that were also providing cancer screenings and family planning services for women around the state. the last piece of the bill will go into effect in september. and it's the most draconian piece.
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it's the piece that will require all of these centers to meet ambulatory surgical center standards without any evidence that there is a safety concern that requires that that be the case. and when that happens, we expect that we will likely only have five or six clinics left open out of the 42 in the state. >> when you announced your campaign, there was a lot of -- a lot of high expectations. you had fund-raising base, you have an incredible resume, an incredible personal story to tell, an accomplished legislator. polling has not been favorable to you so far. you recently replaced your campaign manager. is the campaign going as you hoped it would when you declared? >> i'm actually very, very pleased with where our campaign is. i wish you could be here on the ground with me, chris, to see what i see as i travel the state. certainly in my experience, and democratic politics, i've never seen anything like it. and we know that oftentimes the only accurate poll is the one
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that's taken on election day. i expect that we're going to see something remarkable happen because i see it already happening on the ground all over the state. >> the democratic party in texas has been, frankly, more -- it is not a strong entity. it has not been a strong entity in a long time. what makes you think you can turn that around in the next few months? >> i guess i could speak to that by referring, first, to the senate races that i've won. and our senate districts in texas are huge. they're about 100,000 people larger than congressional districts. and i won twice. in a district where both times polling and every political pundit counted me out. >> i want to talk about medicaid expansion. greg abbott is someone who sued against the affordable care act in his role as attorney general. obviously opposes medicaid expansion. texas has blocked medicaid expansion and has more people eligible in raw numbers than any other state. do you favor medicaid expansion? will you make that a priority if elected governor?
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>> i do. i absolutely do. and, you know, for a myriad of reasons. not the least of which is that in the next ten years, texans will pay about $100 billion to the federal level that will go to subsidize health care in california and new york rather than come back to texas and work for us in our own economy. we also will cover between 1 million and 1.5 million hardworking texans through medicaid expansion, and there's the expectation through economic analyses that have been done of what it will mean for our state that demonstrate a stimulus effect of about 300,000 jobs per year. and what's so important about that is not just that sheer number, but the fact that those dollars will go to some of our most economically depressed areas in the state. >> that's right. >> and help create job growth where it's most needed. >> some of those economically, most economically depressed
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areas are, of course, in along the border. i'd like to get your reaction to the current unfolding humanitarian crisis as regards unaccompanied minors and whether you think the federal government is doing the right thing right now. >> we are hearing from border patrol, and i met with them personally in mcallen on monday, they're processing between 1,000 and 1,200 people per day. what i've asked at the federal level is that they send to us immigration judges who can properly, efficiently, and effectively while we have these people here in our community, put them through a proper immigration hearing process, where appropriate, repatriate them. where not, make sure we help move them along and to a productive part of our community and safe part of our community. about 20% of the people who are coming in every day are unaccompanied minors.
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it's a heartbreaking situation. >> state senator wendy davis, democratic nominee for governor in texas. thank you so much. >> thank you, chris. all right. fusion. you know fusion. when harnessed in physics, it can unleash awe-inspiring power. and fusion can do the same in politics. i will explain in tonight's "all in america" dispatch, ahead. (vo) after 50 years of designing cars for crash survival, subaru has developed our most revolutionary feature yet. a car that can see trouble... ...and stop itself to avoid it. when the insurance institute for highway safety tested front crash prevention nobody beat subaru models with eyesight. not honda. not ford or any other brand. subaru eyesight. an extra set of eyes, every time you drive. here's another. try charmin ultra strong.
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check your speed. see how fast your internet can be. switch now and add voice and tv for $34.90. comcast business. built for business. tonight on "all in america," if you've watched our show you've heard the story of the conservative wave in north carolina. a state where all three branches of government are now under
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republican control for the first time since the 1800s. a state where that power has been used to cut unemployment benefits, past voter i.d.s, to opt out of medicaid expansion. you're heard about the progressive response to that. moral mondays. we got a chance to go down to north carolina to look at the secret ingredient in the moral monday movement. it's called a fusion coalition. you ever thought you'd be working with president of the naacp from north carolina? >> no, never did, but something i have learned through this process is that, you know, when you have a common goal, people can work together if they try. >> it's one of the hardest things to do in all of american politics. bring african-americans and white people into the same coalition in the south. ♪ reverend william barber ii is the president of the north carolina naacp. he comes from four generations of pastors and for 21 years he's been preaching on sunday mornings at the green leaf
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christian church in goldsboro, north carolina. barber has been working for years to create a cross-racial, nonpartisan coalition in the state. >> what we call a homegrown led state-government focused, deeply moral, deeply constitutional, pro-justice, pro-labor, anti-racist, anti-poverty, transformative fusion coalition. >> on november 6th, 2012, organizers in the state faced a new challenge. >> ladies and gentlemen, it's time for a carolina comeback. it starts tonight. god bless. >> with that, north carolina's first republican governor in two decades claims victory. >> with one of their own in the governor's mansion, north carolina republicans didn't waste any time pushing forward a right-wing agenda. >> today the statehouse voted in favor of stricter regulations on abortion clinics. >> a large crowd gathered in downtown asheville today to protest north carolina's cuts to
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education. >> republicans in the general assembly won't expand medicaid. >> state lawmakers debate major changes to north carolina's voting law. >> new law requires a photo i.d. to vote in north carolina, also shortens the early voting period in the state. >> today less than six years after the state went for barack obama, republicans in north carolina control the entire law making process. >> the first work of a moral movement is to snatch people out of depression. when these folks took over in raleigh last year, people were like, oh, lord, they got a supermajority, what are we going to do? some of us said, what did we do in the past? what did dr. king do, what did young people do? they stood up. they refused to accept reality as it was being told by the dominant power. >> we're asking you to disperse. cease and disperse. we'll give you five minutes. >> since april of last year, reverend barber has been showing up at the north carolina legislature protesting what he calls an immoral agenda.
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>> we ought to have a mass sit-in and sit-in everywhere in every houses, in every hall, all over the general assembly. >> week by week, month by month, the moral mondays movement has grown. in part, by engaging ordinary folks around the state's republican agenda. joy boothe has been living in high mountains of yancey county, north carolina, since the 1970s. >> yes, it's very conservative. it's a predominantly white community. >> boothe was born in southern alabama to generations of sharecroppers. >> my dad's mom was 17 years old and there was no health care in the area, and she basically came out of field to have my dad, got an infection and died when my daddy was 6 weeks old. i saw what it was like to live in a community with very little or no health care. >> last year, boothe found herself drawn to the moral
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monday movement. >> i made a vow as a child, if i could, i would break the cycle of poverty, you know, domestic violence, that i would do my best to break those cycles. that's why i'm willing to talk to you today. >> her activism has come at a cost. >> not all my relatives in the deep south agree with me. as i became more involved and more visible, people stopped being my friend. cousins stopped being my friend on facebook. it's a big deal to talk to you just as myself because i love my family. >> boothe made the four-hour trip to raleigh half a dozen times. last year she spoke to her neighbors, nearly one in five of whom lives below the poverty line at a moral monday demonstration. how do you neighbors feel about what's happening in the state? >> i'll be honest, it's hard for people to follow it. politics. they're angry. sometimes they don't know who sure to be angry at.
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they know it's not fair, but that's an honest answer. >> but it's not just in yancey county the moral monday movement is finding allies. it's neighboring mitchell county, too. >> after 15 weeks of moral monday last year, i got an invitation to go to mitchell county. at first i said i'm not going to mitchell county. in 1920, all the blacks were run out of mitchell county because of an alleged rape, okay? put on a train, get out of here. in my practical mind, it says that's a waste of time, it's a stronghold. >> mitchell county is 97% white. yancey county is almost 97% white. in may, the naacp officially opened a mitchell yancey county branch. one of five new the chapters in the state that are majority white. reverend barber found you can organize across race and party if you focus on what matters to people where they live. you a democrat or republican? >> republican. >> lifelong?
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>> all my life. >> consider yourself a conservative republican? >> absolutely. >> adam o'neal is the republican mayor of belhaven, north carolina, rural oceanside town, home to vidant hospital. last year, they announced they would be closing pungo. the president of vidant community hospitals told "all in," "the failure to expand medicaid in north carolina does affect the number of patients we care for that would have been covered under this program but the expansion of medicaid would not have altered this decision." it's hard to overstate how important the hospital is to the town of belhaven. it serves a county and a half and is the largest employer in the town. if it closes, o'neal says residents would have to drive to the nearest emergency room. chris noble, methodist minister in town says he's alive today because of pungo. what happened? >> january 12th, sunday morning, 2:00 a.m. i had a heart attack in the parsonage down here. i coded. they air flighted me to greenfield.
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if it hadn't been for this emergency room, you wouldn't be interviewing me right now. >> right now hospital is scheduled to close july 1st. despite vidant's statements, mayor o'neal blames his fellow republicans in the capitol. >> if the legislature isn't going to accept medicaid expansion, they need to come up with their own program to help these rural hospitals. the fact is if these hospitals close, people are going to die. >> the mayor has teamed up with two local naacp chapters and reverend barber to fight the closing. >> i've been extremely impressed by him. we don't agree on all issues but on medicaid expansion, we do agree. >> look at the current politics of north carolina in one of two ways. permanent, enduring product of the unique history of the south, or you can choose to look at them the way reverend barber does and think it doesn't have to be that way. up next, melissa harris-perry who knows north carolina, lived there for years and is right now in the process of moving back into the belly of
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♪ my mom can print amazing things right from her computer. [ whirring ] [ train whistle blows ] my mom makes trains that are friends with trees. [ train whistle blows ] ♪ my mom works at ge. ♪ we're back. joining me now, my msnbc colleague and dear friend melissa harris-perry. also a professor in lake forest in north carolina. and author of "dear white america," tim wise. what is the history of this kind of cross-racial organizing we're seeing now in moral mondays movements? it does go back. we're looking at mississippi
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summer, freedom summer in mississippi. we know that iconic photo of the three folks, two of whom are white, one of whom is black. there have been moments before when it's been pulled off. >> a couple of things. i mean, one, when we talk about southern exceptionalism, it matters. the south is exceptional. not in the way nonsoutherners tend to think of it that it's so utterly backward and utterly racially divided. in fact, often quite the opposite. there's a level of intimacy internationally in the u.s. south that hasn't always led to equality, but has meant that there have been moments when interracial political movements could emerge in part because people are intimate with one another, because they know one another. so we've seen at various moments, most strikingly, of course, immediately after the civil war, during a period when there was this opportunity for reconstruction. when basically the non land holders, the laboring poor white agricultural workers in the u.s. south saw their interests as
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potentially connected to that of the newly freed formerly enslaved african-americans. and in those moments what we see is what i suspect will happen here which is to say that there are strategic partnerships, but we probably should not expect enduring long-term coalitional change. >> i saw that, right? one of the people we spoke to, that methodist minister, he also said i'm conservative, like i don't like obamacare, i don't think we should have medicaid expansion. i'm telling you, i like doe this hospital, we should keep this hospital. reverend barber talks about a constitutional movement, talking about the north carolina constitution. for a long time i was like, why are you so into the north carolina constitution? it's a document that was written in reconstruction. why -- traditionally, why do these coalitions fall apart? what are the obstacles to them historically and, you know, today? >> one of the things that divides these coalitions is the deliberate exploitation of racial tension by governors, by right-wing politicians, the populist movement in the 1890s was destroyed by that.
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let's remember, this is important, we've been denied this history. there's this idea that the cross-racial struggle has been black and brown southerners and then nice white northern liberals. the civil rights struggle involved white folks who weren't from the north. ann braden wasn't a northerner. connie curry wasn't a northerner. will campbell, not a northerner. these were southerners who stood shoulder to shoulder with black folks. there weren't enough of them. that stretches back all the way to not just reconstruction, the colonial period in colonial, virginia. landless white folks who realized they had more in common with african enslaved persons than with the rich. so if we can tap into that historical recognition that working class people have far more in common regardless of race than that which divides us, i think the folks in north carolina and throughout the country who try to do this work will be on to something that is quite lasting. >> you know, i think about that in those terms, too, right?
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you look at medicaid expansion. nice and concrete. it's just madness as policy. it's just the not -- i think it's pretty indefensible policy, right? at the same time, it's like there a lot of people, white folks in north carolina who are conservatives. they think abortion is murder. they really believe that. >> a lot of black people in north carolina think abortion is murder. >> right. the question is why do they get sorted in way -- the idea that, like, your class interests or your interest in good policy can overcome these sort of false conscious beliefs, that always seems to me unpersuasive. >> it's not false consciousness. it's about the salience of any given issue. the fact is that whiteness is a really valuable privilege. it simply is. right? and to suggest that, oh, you should vote your class interest and not your race interest is odd. like, you know, if you have whiteness, there's a lot of good reasons to protect it. right? but i think part of what we see happening under this particular
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extreme version of the north carolina republican regime is two things that are really critical around the question of whiteness. one, north carolina white voters have often seen themselves as different. >> we. >> as a different kind of southerner. as more advanced, more progressive. even when -- >> there's been a brand around north carolina. >> there's a brand of north carolina that is tarnished and the second thing is, as much as there is undoubtedly racism in north carolina, as there is, by the way, in new york, and in all parts of the u.s., there's also this sense of this is just -- this has gone so far that it literally is stripping white privilege. whiteness doesn't even get you over in what is now happening. >> tim, to watch reverend barber and the folks around him, not just reverend barber.
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there are a lot of different people, two different county naacp presidents that launched this lawsuit. to see them organize on that, it's not like come join our movement, what is going on, how can we help you keep this hospital? that's where organizing really starts. >> that's absolutely right. here's the bottom line. the whole trick and lie of whiteness for 400 years has been this idea that you can take white folks who do not have a shirt on their park hardly and say, well, i may not have much, but at least i'm not black. here's the bottom line. at the end of the day, whiteness will not pay your hospital bill, whiteness will not make college affordable for you, whiteness will not get you a wage or alloy you to live at a decent living. i hope as a result of that the movements like that in north carolina will gain traction all around the country and we'll have different coalitions. >> let me tell you, as we left belhaven, mayor staid, do not give up on this pungo hospital. melissa harris-perry. tim wise. thank you. that is "all in" for this evening. "the rachel maddow show" starts now. amazing show. thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. okay. check this out. let this paint a picture for you.


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