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tv   The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell  MSNBC  February 13, 2020 10:00pm-11:00pm PST

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>> do not go anywhere. massachusetts senator elizabeth warren is just ahead on "the last word" with lawrence o'donnell which starts right now. >> good evening, rachel. i am wondering about elizabeth warren's case. is it possible that michael bloomberg's entry to the campaign helps her because he
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goes directly with the past comments of his that are being unearthed now, they go directly into some of her areas of expertise. bankruptcy law, consumer financial protection and now this red lining controversy. >> when i saw her post that today i thought this would be very interesting. it is one thing to unearth a comment from a candidate he will find awkward to complain and another against a competitor that can take you to the wood shed on it like no other politician in the world can. >> bloomberg clearly had struggles with reporters trying to handle this. he know what is he wants to say but there is a shakiness in the way he presents it. if he is on the debate stage next week i imagine they will spend time working on that. >> when i talked to amy klobuchar about the prosecutor
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that mayor bloomberg might qualify for the debate. she didn't rub her hands together but it was implied by the eyes. >> we will have some video of amy klobuchar two nights before they counted the votes in new hampshire. the way that she felt in this one-on-one discussion with john right after having the largest audience she ever had in her campaign turning out to see her in new hampshire. we will show that video later. >> i can't wait. thank you rachel. as rachel showed you elizabeth warren will be joining us tonight. i have a theory that sometimes a candidate gets lucky when another candidate enters the race because sometimes that will emphasize the skills of the candidate that is already in the wait and that could be the
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situation for elizabeth warren with michael bloomberg's entry to the campaign because of these controversies every day. some of them are right in elizabeth warren's areas of expertise. she was a bankruptcy law professor at harvard and created the consumer production bureau for president obama. we will have her later in this hour when she finishes with that event in virginia. and at the end of the hour you will see an extraordinarily powerful video that is not easy to watch. it is from the captain of the wrestling team at ohio state when congressman jim jordan was the assistant coach of the wrestling team. the captain of the team told the ohio state legislature this week that jim jordan knew that the wrestlers were being sexually abused by the team doctor and jim jordan did nothing about it.
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the captain testified when all of it became public jim jordan tried to get him to lie about it saying that jim jordan called him and that jim jordan was crying and begging him to cover up the story. we will bring you that wrestling team's captain testimony on video at the end of this hour and consider what it means for how jim jordan will handle himself in the next high profile hearing in the house judiciary committee where he is the top republican. and the next high profile hearing will have the attorney general of the united states in the witness chair next month. attorney general william barr gave us a preview of his congressional testimony next month about why he changed the sentencing recommendation for donald trump's long time friend and campaign associate roger stone who was convicted of multiple crimes concerning his
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involvement with the trump campaign. the attorney general explained that the prosecutor who he recently put in charge of supervising the prosecution of roger stone discussed the sentencing with the attorney general on monday. >> on monday he came by to briefly chat with me and say that the team very much wanted to recommend the seven to nine year for the judge but thought there was a way of satisfying everybody and providing more flexibility and there was a brief discussion of that. i was under the impression that what was going to happen was very much that i had which is deferring to the judge and pointing out various factors and circumstances. on monday night when i first saw the news reports i said the news
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is spinning this. this is not what we were going to do. >> you were surprised? >> i was very surprised. >> the attorney general he was very surprised that the prosecutors in the case filed a recommendation with a seven to nine year sentence. he wants you to believe that he told the prosecutor supervising the team on the case to not do that. don't do that. but the prosecutor then allowed that to happen anyway. that is the story of everyone working under the attorney general defying the attorney general's order earlier today about how to handle the sentencing recommendations. members of the house judiciary committee are going to have a hard time doing that when they question william barr on the points he just glided through. as the rest of william barr's story unfolds in the abc
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interview you can see why it is very, very important that he insists the prosecutors working on the case just defied him. and then surprised him by doing their original recommendation. seven to nine years in their sentencing recommendation. once i confirmed that is actually what we filed i said that night to my staff that we had to get ready because we had to do something to amend that and clarify what our position was. >> william barr's story is that he decided to request a lower sentence before the president of the united states in the middle of the night tweeted what was basically an order from the president to the attorney general to ask for a lower sentence. >> once the tweet occurred the question is well, now what do i do. do you go forward with what you
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think is the right decision or do you pull back because of the tweet. >> are you following this? william barr's story now is that he was going to do it anyway, recommend a lower sentence before the president told him to do it on twitter. that led to william barr having to say that donald trump's tweets are making it kind of difficult. he used the word impossible. donald trump's tweets are making it impossible for him to do his job. >> public statements and tweet made about the department, about our people in the department, our men and women here, about cases pending in the department and about judges before whom we have cases make it impossible for me to do my job and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department, that we are doing our work with integrity. >> william barr is right.
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it is impossible to honestly do the job of attorney general the way that it is supposed to be done if you are appointed to that job by donald trump. he is also correct that no one should think that as he put it, he is doing his job with integrity. donald trump under mined that. we shouldn't even think he is doing his job with integrity. donald trump is making it impossible for him to do that. nobody should believe william barr when he explained in the interview with abc when it is right or wrong for the attorney general to do. william barr said it is perfectly appropriate for the president to tell him to concentrate more law enforcement resources on terrorism but william barr gave an example of what he would not do or never do even if the president told him to do it. >> if he were to say go and
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investigate somebody and you sense because of a political opponent the attorney general shouldn't carry that out, wouldn't carry that out. >> william barr has indeed carried that out. william barr flew to europe making multiple stops investigating joe biden and joe biden's son because the president wanted him to. william barr assigned a u.s. attorney the extra duty of investigating joe biden and joe biden's son and hillary clinton and the democratic party. william barr said he would not do an investigation like that if you sense it is they are a political opponent. you don't have to sense that joe biden was a political opponent to donald trump. he was declared candidate for president of the united states. william barr will be challenged with his own words, these words you heard from him tonight. he will be challenged when he
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testifies to the house judiciary committee about this next month. william barr has a lot of work to do on the answers to the questions he will be facing, including the question if donald trump has made it impossible for you to do your job why haven't you resigned like federal prosecutor jonathan kravis who had the dignity and sense of duty to resign when you made it impossible for him to do his job. when attorney general william barr changed the sentencing recommendation in the roger stone case, all four -- one resigned because william barr made it impossible for him to do his job and will take his place in the period as a person of principle and lived his oath as a member of the bar and lived
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his oath to support and defend the constitution of the united states. that is not what history will write about william barr. leading off our discussion tonight senior editor for, joyce advances with us, a former attorney for the northern district of alabama and an msnbc contributor and matt miller, former spokesman for the attorney general. an msnbc contributor. because you worked with the attorney general and know the processes so well, i want your reaction to william barr say had a meeting with the lawyer in charge and said i don't like the seven to nine years. said it on monday. you should basically just leave it to the judges' discretion. that is what we should do. that lawyer left the room and
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all of the lawyers involved defied the attorney generals order. what is the likelihood of that happening? >> you know i think the likelihood of them outright defying the attorney generals order is very low. i think there was some type of communication breakdown. i largely believe what william barr said about what happened. >> i think you are crazy. you can stop right there. i think you're crazy. >> no. i don't think he changed the sentencing recommendation because donald trump tweeted that, i think he wanted to deliver it for the president all along. i think he is mad about the president, not because that he is interfering with the justice departments operations but in such a ham handed way that is making it impossible for him to do his job and he interprets his job not the way others do to add minister the law without
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consideration of politics, but to deliver for the president. he wants to deliver for the president in every way he can. as long as he goes out to tweet about it publicly it makes it hard for him to do it. william barr is trying to give the president the greatest gift he can. going after his political opponents the way he wants, shorter sentence for his political allies, quashing investigations into the president himself and the president can't just shut up and take the gift. i have your back. i will take care of you. stop making it so hard for me the people inside the department are revolting and judges are getting angry too. >> it is hard to decide which theory the case is more morally bankrupt, yours or ours. or if the attorney general is just lying to abc, the most simple analysis that i went for.
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matt miller you are here to supply a more sophisticated analysis i am capable of. joyce vance, what do you make of it? >> i think what matt is saying is actually very likely. the more that we hear, it seems like what the attorney general is trying to do is to position himself to save himself. he is trying to come up with a narrative that lets him pretend to the justice department that he has not completely let their independence be taken away by this white house. i think we hear him weaving together a narrative where he said that he spoke with the prosecutors, and the prosecutors were the bad guys. the reason we know that is not the truth is because there is a written pleading filed in the united states court, signed by the united states attorney in the eastern district of virginia, not the senate
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confirmed that was ushered out a week early but a newly installed acting u.s. attorney that came straight out of barr's inner circle. we see the effort to circle the wagons and to give barr plausible deniability. i don't think anyone believes he is really criticizing the president but trying to provide cover for the activity that they are engaged in. >> the lawyer that was hand-picked to be the supervisor of all of this and signs the sentencing recommendation is the guy who is in the office with barr when barr is saying i don't like seven to nine years. we are to believe that guy leaves the room where the attorney general said don't ask for seven to nine years and said let me sign my name to seven to nine years. i am struggling with that. >> it is a thorny one.
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actually i don't want to associate myself with matt's theory of the case. i think it is possible if it gone down the way it should have gone down and donald trump hadn't asserted himself into it, it might have been easier for everybody. but i think one of the things that is so astonish burglar this to me. i remember when we were covering the travel ban at the supreme court, we were trying to understand whether donald trump's tweets were presidential acts with binding force or wallpap wallpaper. you would always see the justice department toggling back and forth. now republicans challenged on the senate floor. why is donald trump threatening judges via twitter and threatening the state of new york via twitter and going after the jury form on twitter. we hear he is just tweeting. i don't care about that. bill barr is saying they are
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real and they are sequentimakind to do my job. it is head-snapping that we can't pick whether the tweets are a joke or whether they are real. that is part of the destabilizing that is going on. >> more what william barr said about the tweets. i am sure we will be hearing more of this in his hearing at the house judiciary committee. >> i do think that in the current situation as i have said, you know, the fact that the tweets are out there and correspond to things that we are doing at the department, you know, that is why i think it is time to stop the tweeting about the department of justice criminal case. >> dahlia, when roger stone is sentenced on thursday we can expect zero tweets from the president? >> you would think that a president that knows at some
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point this judge who is overseeing the case and who has been threatened by roger stone. they had to put him under an order because he was putting pictures of her head with a target next to it. we know she does not react well to threats. anyone, anyone would say huh, maybe i shouldn't be threatening this judge who is about to sentence roger stone. and it seems manifestly clear that he thinks whatever she does is not go to matter because his supreme court will fix it. it's weird. >> one of the things that i find so strange about this, the difference between asking for seven to nine years and then asking in the amended version something less than seven to nine years that is not specified. it is not a big difference and in the end it is all up to the judge anyway no matter what the
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prosecutors recommend. >> that is right. i think you have identified something that is really perplexing here. ultimately the sentencing decision is completely within the judge's control. the reason that the government initially suggests the seven to nine year sentence, that is what the law calls for and the guideline range. roger stone went to trial, convicted of crimes including witness intimidation. not the type of setting where the government asks for a reduced sentence but stays clearly within the context of the law. but in reality the defense was always free to go into the sentencing hearing and ask for a lesser sentence. no reason they can't do it in this setting. the question is why did barr put so much capital into this. he had to know filing the second motion would leave to controversy.
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>> it would be controversial even without the tweet. we will see how soon the pardon comes down on thursday. and when we come back elizabeth warren has just wrapped up a town hall event in the super tuesday state of virginia. she will be our next guest. y st. she will be our next guest
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my podcast is about what it takes to get the nomination. six episodes and timeless themes that separate the few winners from the many losers. from the many losers senator elizabeth warren is campaigning tonight in virginia which will award 99 delegates in their primary on super tuesday, march 3rd where 14 states will be voting. senator warren is currently third in the total. as a former harvard law professor specializing in bankruptcy law and the narn created the financial protection bureau in president obama's
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administration, michael bloomberg who is now running as a democrat is now being asked to answer for statements he is made in the past. in one how he explained the collapse of the homing market that left millions drowning on mortgages on homes that lost their value. >> red lining if you remember was the return where banks will took whole neighborhoods. they said the people are poor. tell them the salesmen, don't go into those areas. congress got involved and local elected officials as well. these people should be able to get credit. once you started to push in that direction banks started to make more and more loans where the credit of the person buying the house wasn't as good as you would like. >> joining us now from arlington, virginia, senator elizabeth warren.
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i want to get your reaction to what michael bloomberg just said about the history of redlining. >> right. what the mayor is really saying is that the crisis could have been averted if the banks were able to discriminate against black and brown people more. let's be clear. that would not have averted the crisis and anybody that thinks the banks should have been allowed to be more racist shouldn't be the leader of our party. >> let me read to you what a bloomberg campaign spokesman said about this specifically. >> mike's saying that something bad, the financial crisis, followed something good which is redlining.
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your reaction to that senator. >> you can try to scrub that video any way that he wants, but it clearly says that you know, redlining is what helped to protect the banks so the banks could make bigger profits. this is how i see this problem. this is the problem of a billionaire who thinks the way he will be elected is go and buy an election. i think the way that the democrats ought to be picking their candidate is through the grassroots. i think funding is a big part of this. when you can just reach in your po pocket and throw a few hundred million on the table and buy your way to a nomination is different than doing it from the groo gra grassroots. just pitch in $5 to say that is the way that we should make our
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campaigns run. be part of this. volunteer. volunteer an hour of phone banking, go to a place near you. we are in 31 states now. really, this is about democracy hanging in the balance. will we be a country where you have to be a billionaire or go suck up to the billionaires or a country where we go and make our democracy work again and fund the campaigns from the grassroots up. >> let he go to the more general question with the stories about peoples' backgrounds and positions. we know that barack obama was against marriage equality before he became in favor of marriage equality. many politicians have changed positions in many ways. bernie sanders used to be more supportive of the nra's position
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on guns than he is now. now he would be defying the nra and continues to defy the nra now as a vermont senator. how much does it matter what is in a candidate's past? isn't it more important what they are saying they will do as president? >> look, we can all say what we will do as president but who is incredible on that? and part of your credibility or lack of credibility is your record. everybody brings their record along with them. somebody that thinks that redlining was a good deal for the banks has the wrong perspective on the whole deal. understand this about redlining. what happened in america is that the federal government subsidized the purchase of the
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housing because it builds wealth and did it for decade for white people and discriminated against black people and created a racial wealth gap that persists until this day. part of the reason when i put together a housing plan, i know we need more housing for all of american. i want to build about 3 million housing units. part television directly addresses redlining saying people that live in former redlined areas can be able to become homeowners. people that got cheated during the financial crisis when black and brown communities were targeted will get a leg up. it is about the role of government. is government there to help the banks? michael bloomberg sure seems to think so. or is it supposed to be on the side of the people. i think it is time to switch over to a government on the side
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of the people. >> presidential candidate ascertain elizabeth warrwre -- warren, thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> the nevada caucuses will be three days after the debate. we saw how the debate in new hampshire four days before the primary boosted senator amy klobuchar to a third place finish. the next debate will probably include michael bloomberg. who will get the debate boost this time and who will be helped or hurt by michael bloomberg's participation in that debate? t e needles. essential for the sea urchin, but maybe not for people with rheumatoid arthritis. because there are options. like an "unjection™". xeljanz xr, a once-daily pill for adults with moderate to severe ra for whom methotrexate did not work well enough. xeljanz xr can reduce pain, swelling and further joint damage, even without methotrexate.
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the league of united latin american citizens is havings it presidential forum in las vegas right now. pete buttigieg has been taking some questions.
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most of the candidates will be appearing or all of them will be appearing in front of that group. four are appearing today. others appearing at another time. we will dip into that if it gets more compelling. we are joined now by the president and ceo of voter latino and john heilman, a national analyst and co-host of showtime's circus. the lulac meeting there in nevada, timed specifically for the nevada caucuses. tell us the importance of that as the nevada caucuses approach. >> well, that is the very first time the latino vote will help to determine who will be the nominee. for the very first time latinos will be the second largest
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voting block. the majority of whites in america are 54. 4 million latinos will be able to cast a vote for the first time since their president called their people rapists and criminals. it is quite significant. >> john, we are seeing pete buttigieg in effect introducing himself to many of the voters and people in that room. they are very much aware of him. but having just been in new hampshire and been in the room where he is speaking it is a very different thing than seeing him on the television. he has the benefit of coming off of some very big showings in iowa and new hampshire. they know who he is when he shows up there. >> this is what happens. we haven't had a lot of
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widowing. >> clarity. at least at the loser. >> we lost andrew yang and patrick and michael bennett but still have five candidates that have gone under. tom steyer who is still floating around. six really competitive candidates in nevada and north carolina. normally you are down to two or three at this point in the race. the widowing hasn't happened. pete buttigieg and bernie sanders have gotten the positive attention. sanders has the great advantage of competing in these in 2016. caucus. organization matters more. the caucus in 2016 was a mess just like in 2008. i think it is helpful to sanders to have been through the process once before and have the organization out there from four years ago. >> i think we have video of michael bloomberg answering a question this week about something he said in 2015 about
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stop and frisk. i want to show that. because if he is on the debate stage next week he will have to work on answers like this. let's listen to this. >> mr. mayor, why did you say what you said in that 2015 speech. >> i don't think those words reflect how i led the most diverse city in the nation and apologized for the practice and the pain that it caused. >> why did you say it? >> it was five years ago. it is just not the way that i think. it does not reflect what i do every day. i led the most populous, largest city in the united states and got reelected three times. the public seemed to like what i do. >> the treereaction tonight andt
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do you think the reaction at lulac would be if there is an answer like that? >> that is something michael bloomberg has to address and be prepared for. what was challenging, he was surprised by the question. that will on the top of everybody's mind. what is interesting with what michael bloomberg is doing at the same time, he is finding the majority of african-american mayors and latino mayors. he does have the ability through bloomberg university to teach these best practices. but he is going to have to talk about not just what the leadership of the leaders have to say about michael bloomberg but what are the practices that impact african-american and latino young males that in some cases, it was more than the idea of being racially profiled but in other cases hurt people. the more he can speak to that
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will able to get him over the hurdle. >> we are go to have to squeeze in a quick break. when we come back we will show that video. john heileman's one-on-one with amy klobuchar in new hampshire a night or two before the votes were cast in new hampshire when she had just spoken to the largest crowd that she had anywhere in the entire one-year history of her presidential campaign. we will be right back. story of campaign we will be right back. ♪ limu emu & doug
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>> i know. >> your campaign alerted everyone this is the largest amy klobuchar in the campaign. what explains that? >> momentum. it is all about what happened after the debate honestly. i think that i had a moment to of course show policy difference with some of my opponents and make the case for me. >> what feels different now in this eight-day window? >> it is really different. i'm here. >> right. >> because in iowa i was basically bolted to my desk in d.c. i am able to be here and go with the flow and to get to events and spontaneously stop by diners. it makes you a better leader. your whole goal is to win and to bring people to you and your goal in an election is to figure out what people are listening to. if you are not out there with
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people, you lose that. >> we are back. maria teresa, amy klobuchar showed other candidates how to break out of the pack during the district attorney bait. the nevada debate will be equally important coming out of the nevada caucuses. >> i have to say when i have been asked behind closed circles who i thought was a sleeper candidate, i have said that amy is one of the sleeper candidates. she has incredible instinct when it comes to politicaling. and she is one of the funniest people that i personally know. just to see her grow from the first time she took the debate stage where she felt nervous, to see her really own the stage and talk about policies and really
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grounded in the amy that has been able to connect with minnesotians, that is huge. it gives her an opening to have a conversation with the folks in nevada in a fresh, new way. >> with the exception of bernie sanders who is always himself in a debate and always has been. what i have noticed, the higher a candidate climbs in the polls, the more careful they are in the debate. the lower they are in the polls, the more they go for it. amy klobuchar was so low in the polls she had nothing to protect. she went for it and scored. >> she has been getting better. october, november, december, three solid debates and didn't perform as well in des moines. she really focused on this one. she knew it was it for her. if she finished fourth or fifth as she did in iowa she would have had to drop out of the
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race. it was on the line for her. and the thing that you see in that clip, the retail politician. she is going to touch people and she gets better by adjusting as she goes along. she could feel it working and that is kind of a special thing. what's the state that amy klobuchar wins? if she does want win soon she won't go very far. and big states are looming after south carolina. the pressure is on her in nevada. she has to put something on the board here. she is not broken through yet. she has length but not a break
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through. >> thank you for joining us. i really appreciate it. when we come back new public testimony about congressman jim jordan and jim jordan's role in covering up a sexual abuse scandal at ohio state where reports say 177 athletes weby o of the doctors there at ohio state. we will tell you what jim jordan knew and when he knew it. this is very powerful video. some of you might not want to watch it but it tells you a lot about jim jordan's history. t about jim jordan's history he's a systems quarterback.
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where's the truck? what? parked it right there. male voice: what did i tell you, boys? tonight we eat like kings! (chuckling) you're a genius, gordon! brake! hit the brake! uh, which one's the brake? (crash, bottles smashing) stop! stop! sto-o-op! (brakes squealing) what's happening? what? there's a half of cheesesteak back there. with geico, the savings keep on going. just like this sequel. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance. raccoon: i got the cheesesteak!
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that's how xfinity makes tv... simple. easy. awesome. ♪ i'm feeing good right now jim jordan was an assistant wrestling coach at ohio state before becoming the congressman without the suit coat. and when jim jordan was the coach testified about sexual
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abuse of his wrestling teammates, including his brother and that he told jim jordan about that. i was a wrestler at ohio state. i was captain of the team in question with a lot of these allegations and what was going on for four of the final years. so, i am very disgusted in the way that this has been handled. i have had my teammates call me crying. i went to jim jordan. i went to them as a captain begging them to do something. they did nothing. >> when his brother, mike, became the whistleblower that exposed the sexual abuse of
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wrestlers by the team doctor he says jim jordan tried to get other wrestlers to defend him, jim jordan, against the accusation that he did nothing about the abuse that he knew about. >> jim jordan called me crying. on the fourth of july begging me to go against my brother. begging me. crying for a half-hour. that is the kind of cover-ups that is going on there. jim jordan called me several times after that. that week i had to have my lawyer call him. tell him to stop calling me. i had a team made george pardos
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i talked to. call jim jordan and tell him to quit calling me or i am going to beat his -- that's what i said. he is a coward. he is a coward. he is not a leader. he is a coward. i am a leader. i was captain of these guys. that is why i am here. i would never abandon my team. he abandoned us. our head coach abandoned us. he flipped his story. he called other people to flip their story. he called his parents, 90 years old. that is the kind of person jim jordan is. okay. jim jordan, if i ever see him he better not come around me. i guarantee you that. >> john heileman is back with us. it is so difficult to listen to.
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he is not the only one. there are many other members of the team that are saying the same thing and over a period of years. ultimately 177 athletes involving others and wrestling. the political question for us with jim jordan, what i had not understood about this even before this testimony is why isn't jim jordan chased down every hallway in congress with microphones asking him to answer for this? >> i don't know. i know i think, you know, because some figures, the finality of evil and the way the coverage of politics, people are very comfortable staying in their lane, asking the questions they are supposed to ask. talking about process and legislation and things in the normal coolki normal tool kit. if you ask them to behave like
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human beings, they get uncomfortable with it. there is some uncomfortableness with this level of topic and rawity. i have never viewed the evidence in this case, but that is credibility. i think there are cases that are this horrific where it's incumbent on us all to step outside our comfort zone and start to do what you just suggested. >> we're out of time for the night. the most important thing was be see that video. more important is what he had to say about it. john heilman, thank you for joining us. "the 11th hour" with brian williams starts now. >> tonight, the effort to figure out what the attorney general of the united states is up to while admitting today to quitting involved in easing the jail time for trump's friend roger stone. the a.g. goes on to say the president's tweets make it impossible for him to do his job. meanwhile, john kelly finally speaking up candidly about what he saw