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updated 1/28/2014 2:20:20 PM ET 2014-01-28T19:20:20

ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES

Guests: Raymond Lesniak, Darryl Isherwood, Richard Sherman, Kay Hymowitz,
Irin Carmon


CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris
Hayes.

Well, a couple of things happened in the state of New Jersey today.
There were in developments in Chris Christie`s bridge scandal, and I went
over to Jersey City to interview Richard Sherman of the Seattle Seahawks.
That interview is coming up.

But, first, two bridge investigations officially joined forces today
to become one joint inquiry with the authority to pursue any other
potential corruption charges that might come to light on the way. That is
big. This just as another abuse of power accusation that did not get much
attention before the scandal comes under new scrutiny.

After the governor at the center of it all hears what he was up to as
the investigations into his administration march forward.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: Now, people can go to New York
and have some fun in New York. I`m fine with that. That`s good. Let them
go over there. Go to a couple -- they have a few good restaurants over
there. They got some theater and other stuff to do.

But you know, in the end, this is about the game. It`s not about all
the other stuff. It`s about the game. So, we`re proud to be the hosts of
the game. We`re proud to share other festivities with our neighbors on the
wrong side of the Hudson River.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Some understandable home state pride from a governor who has
left to pretend like nothing is happening, which is more or less his
strategy at his inauguration last week.

But something is definitely happening in New Jersey. In the infamous
bridge scandal, two investigations, one by each house in the New Jersey
legislature, were merged today by unanimous votes. The newly created joint
committee will be comprised of eight Democrats and four Republicans.

And despite some Republican grumbling that this makeup could give a
blank check to the investigators, Assemblyman John Wisniewski said he would
not change the investigative committee`s partisan balance, or the scope of
its power.

Quote, "We can`t predict where the investigation will take the
committee. The prudent judgment is to give the committee the kind of
leeway it needs to uncover the facts."

Wisniewski will co-chair the committee with Senate Majority Leader
Loretta Weinberg of whom Christie once infamously said to the press, quote,
"Can you please take the bat out on her at once?" Advising the joint
committee will be a man by the name of Reid Schar, a guy who knows his way
around uncovering malfeasance. Just ask former governor of Illinois Rod
Blagojevich. Schar is the former assistant U.S. attorney who helped
convict Governor Blagojevich back in 2011.

Bear in mind that the 20 subpoenas already issued to Christie`s circle
by the New Jersey legislature investigation will require a response by
February 3rd. Meanwhile, Governor Christie`s spokesman said today the
governor will travel to six states this spring, Texas, Georgia, Utah,
Connecticut, Massachusetts, and the home state of Rod Blagojevich,
Illinois, to campaign for candidates in his capacity as chair of the
Republican governors association.

Everywhere he goes, he will be dogged by questions about "time for
some traffic problems in Fort Lee", about a mayor who says his
administration held up federal funds for Sandy relief in exchange for green
lighting a development project for politically connected firm. And every
other emerging example of alleged corruption, political malfeasance were
just bully politics. It`s all going to trail as the press now goes back to
Christie`s record and views it with a new set of eyes.

As people wonder aloud, why Mayor Dawn Zimmer, for example, did not
speak up earlier, there`s a good argument to be made that no one would have
listened. And if you think that`s crazy, ask this guy. Ben Barlyn, now
feature by "The Newark Star Ledger`s" editorial board, quote, "Ben Barlyn
is a former Hunterdon County prosecutor who says he was fired in 2010
because he refused to drop a case against a Christie ally. For the past
year, he`s been striving to prove his story, paying through the nose for a
civil lawsuit against the state while telling it to anyone who will
listen."

"Star Ledger" concluding their editorial with a call for, quote, "a
state legislative, committee, a U.S. attorney`s office or a specially
appointed prosecutor to get involved and issue subpoena."

So, to turn the phrase from Governor Christie, it`s not about the
other stuff. It`s about the investigation.

Joining me now is New Jersey State Senator Raymond Lesniak, a
Democrat.

There was some concern I think about the two committees and the
assembly and the Senate tripping over each other. Is this a good
development, the merging of them?

STATE SEN. RAYMOND LESNIAK (D), NEW JERSEY: For sure. Now we can
focus on the facts and get the facts out. And it`s not just about the
bridge. It`s now about the misuse and abuse of governmental power, whether
it be Sandy money or whether it be stifling a prosecutor because he wanted
and did indict a friend of Christie`s.

HAYES: What do you think -- I`ve got to say, this case, which again,
it was fully reported. It was in "The New York Times," which is hardly an
obscure paper. It was reported by the New Jersey press.

It strikes me as a fact pattern that is potentially quiet damning. I
mean, you have a politically connected sheriff of a county indicted by a
local prosecutor, the governor`s own attorney general comes in, kicks out
the prosecutor and rescinds the indictment.

LESNIAK: Well, if you`re not from New Jersey, not in politics in New
Jersey, you don`t understand how difficult it is to get the attention of
you guys in the press. But --

(LAUGHTER)

HAYES: I thought you were going to say something else. I thought you
were going to say you don`t understand how normal this is.

(LAUGHTER)

LESNIAK: But once we get that attention, then everything is exposed
and everything is becoming exposed.

HAYES: Let me -- OK, here`s the thing. First of all, I want to get
your reaction to this headline. Governor Christie breaking the record for
most bills vetoed in New Jersey ever, just while this thing is going on.
So, it doesn`t seem necessarily there`s a point to point connection with
what`s going on with the investigations and him wanting to play nice with
the legislature.

LESNIAK: This was actually at the same time, he touted how
bipartisanship he was. He vetoed -- a record number of vetoes. But I
think it is a question, he just didn`t have time.

HAYES: Here`s my question for you, Senator. I feel like every time I
talk to you, I talk to someone else in New Jersey politics. It`s like
they`re always holding back.

You know, this has been the case for a year. You`re smiling because
it`s the truth. Every time I talk to someone in Jersey politics, oh, this
guy. Man, you wouldn`t believe what`s going on.

And slowly but surely, we get stuff reported out and things get
confirmed, and allegations are now on the record. What is the deal? Are
people just still scared of the Christie operation? Is it that there`s
just a lot of rumor mongering and people don`t want to be associated with
it.

It seems to me like when you start pulling the thread, there`s all
these stories that have been out there, that have been passing around the
capital in Trenton, for the duration of Christie`s term. Only now are we
getting them.

LESNIAK: People feared Chris Christie. Republicans wouldn`t go to
the bathroom without questioning him. Democrats endorsed him because they
were afraid they wouldn`t get municipal aid.

So, it was a pervasive feeling. This guy is a tough guy, and if you
crossed him, he was going to cross you. Now, it`s all coming out. People
are starting to get courage.

HAYES: Republicans -- I want to bring in Darryl Isherwood, senior
political reporter for NJ.com, who has been covering the story.

Republicans are complaining about the makeup of these committees,
basically saying this has now become a partisan vendetta. Do you think
that has much traction now in the state?

DARRYL ISHERWOOD, NJ.COM: I think it`s getting a little. But I don`t
think it`s there yet.

I don`t think anybody is ready to say, oh, it`s a witch hunt. They`re
right. Let`s move on, you know?

I think the problem for Christie is we`ve talked about all of these
things is exactly what you said. They start to come out of the woodwork
and story lines we all reported and we all looked out for a long period of
time now get looked at through a new prism, through this bully prism. It
changes the whole dynamic of it all because now you say, well, all right,
this happened. This happened.

Is this a pattern?

HAYES: Let`s say, bully is one thing. That`s a description of
someone`s character, or their disposition, their attributes. Abuse of
power is a different thing, right? That`s over the line. Someone can be a
bully and not abuse power.

But what is being alleged in the bridgegate, what happened clearly in
bridgegate and what is being alleged by Dawn Zimmer. And in this case, I
just want to read a little of this Ben Barlyn accusation because I will
admit, Senator, as you were chasing me a moment ago, I was -- I did not pay
attention when this first came out.

Barlyn says after he secured the indictment in 2010 against Hunterdon
County sheriff Deborah Trout (ph), a Republican with political ties with
Christie, he was fired. The case hastily killed by Christie`s appointed
attorney general at the time, Paula Dow.

How much traction did this story get the first time around? And how
much do you see it getting now?

ISHERWOOD: You know, it got some buzz. There was definitely buzz out
there when this thing hit. You know, people were talking about it.

One thing I would point out and was pointed out at the time, Paula Dow
was a Democrat. It`s not like she was a Christie loyalist and a crony who
he -- you know, Christie has a ton of people that came with him from the
U.S. attorney`s office. She`s a Democrat.

HAYES: But she came from Christie`s U.S. attorney`s office. We
should be clear. I mean --

ISHERWOOD: My point being, she wasn`t one of the Republicans who has
followed him throughout his administration. She is a Democrat. So, that
was pointed out at the time, and you know, as I said, some of the things
get looked at through a different prism.

I`m not saying in this case. But wait, I was bullied, too. Anybody
who looked cross eyed at by the governor is now saying he bullied me.

HAYES: Well, I think there`s a distinction to be made. One of the
things I think that does -- there`s a sort of sliding scale of what this
term bullying means. I mean, you have to remind everyone as we go further
into this that giving federal funds to a city that had been under water or
causing a traffic jam for no reason, which again, in some ways it`s causing
traffic problems in Fort Lee, that can get lost in a certain way, Senator,
as we mark through the other instances.

LESNIAK: And it`s important that it does not get lost, particularly
the cover-up. We -- I don`t know -- probably I don`t believe governor
Christie ordered the lanes to be closed. But he had to be -- his whole
staff was involved in making up this phony story. It`s a loss of
credibility that is really going to haunt the governor, for sure.

HAYES: David Samson has emerged as a key figure in this. And Samson,
we`ve talked about on the show. He`s very well respected. He`s part of
the New Jersey establishment.

It does seem, though, that there`s just almost an inherent conflict in
him being at this law firm that`s politically connected while sharing the
port authority. Forget whether the guy is an angel or a devil. He`s in a
position that is almost the abuse of power and conflict of interest seems
baked into it.

ISHERWOOD: Yes, it really came out in that story that your colleague
Steve Kornacki reported. That, you know, here you have a former law
colleague of David Samson who now works for the Chris Christie
administration recommending Hoboken go for this Port Authority money for
the study. Port Authority approves it. A Samson client suddenly emerges
as the best developer for this ad.

HAYES: Let`s look at this Google map. This has gotten lost in the
story. The prologue, the tweet link version of what Mayor Dawn Zimmer is
alleging is this kind of pro quid quo, right? Unless you approve this
development of the Rockefeller group, the money won`t start flowing.

But let`s remember, the whole thing started with the Port Authority
paying for a study which concluded of the whole area, only three blocks
were right for this kind of redevelopment. Those three blocks that
happened to be the three blocks owned by a Rockefeller development group.

So, forget everything. Forget the allegations. Just look at what we
know on the record. That itself is suspect.

ISHERWOOD: Right. And the Port Authority hired that person, the
informant who did the study.

HAYES: Yes.

ISHERWOOD: I should say chose the person (ph) who did the study.

HAYES: Yes.

ISHERWOOD: So, you`re right. You`ve got that inherent conflict. And
Samson is sort of on all sides of that piece, which I think makes people
look at that and look at him in a different light as well.

HAYES: Yes, David Samson is one of the people who has been
subpoenaed. What is the game plan right now among you and your colleagues
as we head towards the big day of February 3rd?

LESNIAK: One of the difficulties we`ll face is now there`s a federal
investigation. There will be a lot of Fifth Amendments being played. I
think the governor may very well claim executive privilege from some of his
people. We`re going to have to face that. We`re going to be in court.
There`s going to be a lot of back and forth.

But meanwhile, David Samson`s response to the lanes being closed and
people`s lives being endangered and laws being broken was circle of wagons,
let`s keep this under wraps. That alone should cause him to resign from
the Port Authority.

HAYES: It is remarkable again, I`m not saying whether he has been
telling the truth or not about his involvement, whether he`s been honest
with the governor or not about his involvement, it is remarkable of all the
people on record of being involved with this and the pushback to it, he`s
the guy who still has his job of chairman of the Port Authority,
particularly given the cloud of suspicion that`s been created by the
mayor`s allegation.

State Senator Raymond Lesniak, Darryl Isherwood from NJ.com -- thanks
so much.

All right. Coming up, my interview with Seattle Seahawks cornerback
Richard Sherman. I asked him to respond to this now infamous interview.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)

REPORTER: Who was talking about you?

RICHARD SHERMAN, SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: Crabtree! Don`t you open your
mouth about the best, or I`m going to shut it for you real quick. LOB.

REPORTER: All right. And, Joe, back over to you.

HAYES: Have you watched that? Have you watched the clip of yourself
in Erin Andrews?

SHERMAN: I`ve seen it. I`ve seen it.

HAYES: When you look at it, do you -- what`s your reaction when you
watch it or when you see it?

(END VIDEO CLIPS)

HAYES: That reaction and more of my interview with Richard Sherman,
ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Up next, my interview with Seattle Seahawks` cornerback
Richard Sherman. Don`t miss what he has to say about everyone else`s trash
talk.

And later, Senator Rand Paul, known to do some trash talking himself,
says the war on women is over and women won because of female
veterinarians.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Before last week, Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman
was known for a few things for those who knew him. He was known as one of
the best, arguably the best at his position NFL cornerback. He was known
for his incredible life story that took it from Compton, to graduate in
high school with the 4.2 GPA, to Stanford University and finally to the
NFL.

He was also known for his trash talk. And it`s that last part that
has made him a household name because of these 25 seconds last week.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLP)

REPORTER: Joe, thank you so much.

Richard, let me ask you the final play. Take me through it.

SHERMAN: Well, I`m the best corner in the game. When you try me with
a sorry receiver like Crabtree, that`s the results you`re going to get!
Don`t you ever talk about me!

REPORTER: Who was talking about you?

SHERMAN: Crabtree! Don`t you open your mouth about the best, or I`m
going to shut it for you real quick. LOB.

REPORTER: All right. And, Joe, back over to you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Since then, this 25-year-old has found himself in the updraft
of a full multiplatform media firestorm. There is unbelievable invective
unleashed on social media where Sherman was called classless or worse.
Like Richard Sherman is an ignorant ape and someone needs to introduce
Richard Sherman to George Zimmerman.

The next day, the word "thug" was said 625 times on TV, which is more
often than any other day in the last three years according to IQ Media, a
research company that tracks these kinds of things.

Let`s face it. There`s a total limitation placed upon the speech of
athletes, particularly brash, young, black men in the public eye. If it`s
not adhered to, they become easy targets for backlash politics. Those same
folks leading the backlash have succeeded in making Richard Sherman the
most talked about athlete in America.

His story is the story people are talking about. This week, leading
up to the most watched television event in the country, Sunday Super Bowl.
In fact, the Super Bowl has been billed as Peyton Manning versus Richard
Sherman.

Richard Sherman is a clever guy. Far too clever to let himself be
turned into a one dimensional cartoon villain, or in the words of "Sports
Illustrated", "to take the bait."

In fact, as I discovered when I got a chance to sit down with him
today face to face, number 25 is a much, much more complex and fascinating
man than those 25 seconds showcased.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: So this is the big debate right now after -- so, after the
last game, after the NFL films tape came out in which you`re miked. You
make the play. You celebrate for a moment. You run up to Crabtree.

You`re like, heck of a game. Heck of a game.

And the big debate in my office is are you taunting him in that -- is
that a good faith like, "Hey, hell of a game"? Or do you realize you`re
like putting it in his face?

SHERMAN: So the game is going to end in 22 seconds. Is it taunting
then? You know what I mean?

It`s one of those things where the game was going to be over in 22
seconds. If the guy walks to the locker room, I don`t get a chance to say
good game. So, I guess as good-natured as you can do in a football game, I
was going to give the guy a handshake before. His season is over. Their
season is over. He`s headed to the locker room. It was a great game. It
was great --

HAYES: So, in that moment when you`re running over to him, you`re
thinking I want to give him a quick pound and be like, hey --

SHERMAN: Be like, yes, man, that was great. You battled today.
Great job. And --

HAYES: And you were -- I mean, you were surprised when he gave you --

SHERMAN: Yes, I was surprised because I thought -- I mean, if he
didn`t want to shake, all he had to do was wave it off and I would have
turned around and celebrated with my teammates. So, I was a little
surprised by the push.

HAYES: Is that what set you off?

SHERMAN: No, no. I mean, what set me off was a lot of other factors,
I guess.

HAYES: Like?

SHERMAN: Like, I mean, you know, it`s a competitive game. Passion
set me off. You know, making a big play set me off. Just being in the
moment.

HAYES: Have you watched that? Have you watched the clip of yourself?

SHERMAN: I`ve seen it. I`ve seen it. I`ve seen it.

HAYES: When you look at it, do you -- what`s your reaction when you
watch it, or when you see it?

SHERMAN: I mean, it looks fine to me. I don`t think too much of it.
You know, I don`t think too much of it. I mean, it`s after a game. Big
play made. You`re going to get a big reaction.

HAYES: I thought it was interesting when you were talking about thugs
and one of the things you said is I know thugs. And if you talk to thugs,
I`m the furthest thing from a thug.

I was curious. What do you mean by that? What`s your definition of
it?

SHERMAN: I mean, the dictionary`s definition -- Webster`s definition
is a criminal, is criminal. And I`m far from a criminal. You can check my
record. It`s pretty clean.

And I think -- I think people confuse it, you know, with the way they
use it, and they`re a little confused.

I think people are trying to use it, as I said before, as a substitute
for the "N" word. It`s an accepted way to say it. People aren`t using it
like I`m a criminal, because I didn`t do anything criminal in that sphere.
I didn`t do anything criminal. I didn`t break any laws, didn`t break any
rules.

And they said I`m classless and this, that, and the other. But the
way they were using the word took it out of context. They took it out of
its true definition and true meaning.

HAYES: One thing that happened in response to all that is people are
then getting a bio of you. I mean, you know, most NFL players are kind of
anonymous, aside from quarterbacks that we see on endorsement deals is
people behind helmets making plays, right? Most Americans didn`t know who
Richard Sherman was frankly. People of Seattle did, and people who had you
on their fantasy teams --

SHERMAN: Fantasy teams.

HAYES: Because everyone (INAUDIBLE) to you.

SHERMAN: Yes.

HAYES: But what do you want people to -- if people have the chance to
get the second bite of the apple of who Richard Sherman is, what is the bio
you want them to know?

SHERMAN: I want them to know about -- you know, the journey. The
journey that I took from Compton, California, Watts, California, to
Stanford, the trials and tribulations. The things I do off the field to
help the community, to help kids, to try to get kids to understand that
furthering you education is a path to accomplishing goals, to being
everything you can be, being as powerful as a person as you can be, to
really reaching a potential and understanding that you`re not -- you`re not
boxed in by the neighborhood you`re brought up in, by the circumstances
that you`re raised in.

And really try to be an inspiration for kids. And it`s something that
I felt like I needed as a young kid, and I would love to have. To just see
somebody who came from humble beginnings, who came from where I came from
to make it to where they are now.

I would have loved to hear that story, and see that story. I`m sure
it would inspire me as a little kid. So, I`m trying to do as much as I
can.

Just kids seeing that, that people from your neighborhood are going to
the next level. They are taking the next steps and then they`re getting
their degrees. So, it`s possible. So it`s totally plausible for you to
think, oh, man, I can go to Dominquez High School, then graduate from
there, go on in college, graduate from there, and potentially make it to
the NFL. Or potentially take a different career path.

HAYES: If you weren`t, you were just talking about checking your
stock trade, your Tesla stock. If you were not a corner, if all this ended
tomorrow for some reason or another, what would you want to be doing out
there?

SHERMAN: I think I`d still want to be involved in football. I think
I`d want to be coaching or teaching. I think I have too much knowledge of
the game and it has been such a blessing to be able to show your talents
and show your skills. But I think I have more to give to the kids that are
playing now, you know, showing them fundamentals, helping them understand
the game for what it really is, and also getting into the final sphere a
little bit.

HAYES: One of the things I`ve noticed and people talking about you is
that one side of it is people calling you a thug. And then people run and
they say, but, oh, he`s got a Stanford degree.

And it feels like sometimes the sub text is that he`s one of the good
ones. Like don`t worry, he`s got a Stanford degree.

How do you respond to that and the way that that degree, and the fact
that you were a good student is being marshaled in the way people talk
about it?

SHERMAN: Well, I think that`s showing some of the closed mindedness
of society and how they want to label people. They want to feel like it`s
black or white. It`s either this category or this category. There`s no
middle ground.

I think I encompass just about every part of both. I was totally
raised in Compton. I totally was there.

You know, I might not fit in the best, but I was there. That`s where
I was from.

And I also went to Stanford and got my education. I succeeded in that
way. I`m also in the NFL and part of that fraternity. And there`s so many
things that go into a person that -- stop trying to label people is what I
can say. I mean, I guess best label for myself, I`m a pragmatist. You
know, I`m a guy who believe that had my reality is the reality of the
world, and I do my best to make it that way.

HAYES: Barack Obama calls himself a pragmatist --

SHERMAN: Yes.

HAYES: -- someone who has lived in a lot of different worlds as well.

SHERMAN: Yes, he did.

HAYES: When you showed up the first day of Stanford, were you like,
where the hell am I? Or where you like, this is -- this is -- I like it?

SHERMAN: A combination of both, a combination of both, because where
I`m from, there isn`t a lot of culture, there isn`t a lot of diversity in
Compton. You know, you have Hispanics. You have some Polynesians and you
have blacks. And that`s really the mix in the city.

And then you get to Stanford and you have different Asians. You have
South Africans, East Africans, you have European, you have Canadians, so
many different nations, so many different cultures, so many different
people coming together in one spot. I was shocked at the way they were
talking, the conversations, the dialogue, the debates that are going on.

The intelligence, you know. You can be yourself. You can read in the
library and not be bothered.

So, it`s a kind of a culture shock. A kid from Compton who hadn`t
seen too much outside the city, to tell you the truth.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: More on my interview with Richard Sherman up next. Stick
around.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

HOST: Who are you picking for the Super Bowl?

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I think Denver. You know, everybody
is such a Manning fan, and that loud mouth from Seattle sort of epitomizes
the Seattle team to me.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

HAYES: I asked Richard Sherman what he thought of Senator John
McCain`s comments. I also asked him about what he had to say about
Compton`s other shining star, Kendrick Lamar. Just a couple of things we
discussed in the second half of my interview.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: Senator John McCain had this quote the other day, which I`m
just quoting because he said it. But a lot of people have this feeling.
Everybody is such a Manning fan. That loud mouth from Seattle epitomizes
the Seattle team to me. Do you feel like the story that`s getting built in
the run up to the game is like Peyton Manning is the hero and Richard
Sherman is the villain? That`s the good guy and you`re the bad guy?

RICHARD SHERMAN, CORNERBACK, SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: I don`t see it that
way, maybe in his circle. I`m sure he`s said worse than that and I think,
I try not to judge people on what they say or what they do, you know, his
opinion is what it is. He`s entitled to it. I don`t think it`s good guys
versus bad guys. We have way too many good guys on our team. We have
Russell Wilson versus Peyton Manning. If you label Russell Wilson a
villain, you`re definitely wrong.

If he`s the leader of the villains, what are you really saying? And
I think people are trying to pass judgment, trying to make themselves
comfortable with the situation and you know, make themselves understand
that this guy is the bad guy. They don`t want to sit there and do the
research. If you did the research and looked and tried to figure out what
I did off the field, you figure out I`m trying to do as much as I can to
make the world a better place.

As much as I can to help as many people as I can. My teammates love
me because I`m not a selfish player. I`m not a selfish person. I`m not
me, me guy. I`m a total team guy and I`m sure he`s got caught up in the
moment before. If everybody labelled him off a sound bite, I`m sure
everyone would have a different view of him. In terms of Senator John
McCain, that`s true. He has gotten caught up in the moment

HAYES: Did you watch Kendrick Lamar last night?

SHERMAN: I didn`t. I didn`t get a chance. I was watching pro ball.

HAYES: You and he are Compton`s most famous right now.

SHERMAN: Compton`s finest right now. He`s a great talent.

HAYES: The Richie Incognito situation. We were talking about
people`s reaction and his use of the word thug. Do you feel like I`m
curious what you thought of that situation? Here`s someone who is
identified in some ways as kind of a villain also. It seems to me what he
did was much more involved. How did you respond to that?

SHERMAN: Objectively, I try not to pass judgment on anybody. I know
Jonathan Martin. He went to Stanford with me. Of course, I`m not going to
judge the guy. I understand Jonathan`s character and who he is as a
person. I`ve talked to him about the situation. I just seems like it was
blown out of proportion. There may have been disagreements. I let
situations play out and let it be who it is. If he did it, he was wrong
for doing it. If he didn`t do it, whatever happened, somebody was wrong.
You can`t pass judgment if you weren`t there.

HAYES: So I feel like you`re someone who has uniquely gone through a
life in which you have been in these deep subcultures. Whether it`s in
Stanford or a football locker room, which have own rules, and sometimes the
rules are frankly messed up. Sometimes they`re the rules that get people
through the day doing something very difficult. And you`ve had to adapt
yourself in those different situations.

SHERMAN: Yes, I`ve had to be a chameleon of sort. You drive from
Compton to Stanford and have to flip the switch. The culture is too
different to treat them both the same. I think it`s not right to treat
them both the same. I see what you`re saying. I understand the culture.
I understand the way the locker room interacts with one another and how
it`s really a family environment. They were saying they`re like brothers
and I can understand that as well. You feel like the guys are the closest
to you.

HAYES: Everyone is Goggling L.O.B. the other day.

SHERMAN: Somebody said I was talking about a gang. That doesn`t make
sense.

HAYES: All right, final question is Payton going to throw to anyone
that you are on?

SHERMAN: I`m sure he will. I`m sure he will. He`s indiscriminate.
He attacks what he feels like is the weakness of the defense. I`m sure
he`ll come my way. I`m sure he`ll come Earl`s way. I`m sure he`ll move
the ball and get it to multiple receivers. It will be a fun game.

HAYES: All right, man, thanks a lot.

SHERMAN: Thank you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: It was really a joy to sit down with Richard Sherman today. I
was struck when I talked to him about what he said about sound bites when
it came to John McCain. It`s true. We live in sound bite culture. I`m
part of that. I know there are people that only know me because of sound
bites. In some ways I only know John McCain because of sound bites. It
was really extraordinary to sit down with Richard Sherman and see this full
complex person or at least a little slice of this complex person.

It also struck me how much we have distinct specific pretty
conceived mental categories for young black men, criminal, star, A-student,
whatever it is, Richard Sherman is someone who kind of messes with all
those. I think that`s part of what America has had a hard time with last
week. I look forward to seeing what he gets up to, not just next weekend
but after that.

Senator Rand Paul argued this weekend that there is no war on women
because his niece is in vet school and his younger sister is an OB gyn.
That story is ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Listen up. Big news! We here at ALL IN have something
special planned for you tomorrow night. President Obama is set to deliver
this year`s "State of the Union" address just after 9:00 p.m. tomorrow,
which means this show will serve as your official MSNBC "State of the
Union" pregame destination. I`ll be joined by some very special guests as
we await the pomp and circumstance and take bets on most likely
presidential heckler. So be sure to join me right here at 8:00 p.m.
tomorrow night for a very special pre-state of the union episode of ALL IN
WITH CHRIS HAYES.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Rand Paul is on a mission to talk some sense into people like
myself and others who keep talking about the Republican Party waging a war
on women. Yesterday Paul appeared on both "Meet The Press" and CNN to
defend the GOP and I will give this to him. He did successfully make it
through not one but two entire interviews without saying libido or uncle
sugar. He even avoided making unfortunate comments like this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COL. ALLEN WEST, FORMER CONGRESSMAN (R-GA): I`m going to be very
blunt. The left tries to win the women`s vote by talking from the waist
down.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Rand Paul managed to avoid Allen West territory, but what he
did do was make an argument essentially that there is no war on women
because there are women in his own family who are doctors and going to
school to be veterinarians, or as his colleague, Haley Barber, may say,
lady vets. Who would have thought?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SENATOR RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: This whole sort of war on women
thing, I`m scratching my head. Because if there was a war on women, I
think they won. You know, the women in my family are incredibly
successful. I have a niece at Cornell vet school. My younger sister is an
OB gyn with six kids and doing great. I have a lot of successful women in
my family and I don`t hear them saying, woe is me in this terrible world.
The women in my family are doing great and that`s what I see in all the
statistics coming out.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: Rand Paul is right. Yes, over the past several decades there
have been massive historical strides in women`s educational attainment.
What Paul didn`t mention when talking about all the successful women in the
Paul family is that every single educational level, women still make less
in real wages than men by a lot. This is the chart for real wages for men
by different educational level. This is the same chart for women.

As you can see, from a high school education to a graduate degree,
all the way to Ph.D., women are making less than men. Perhaps the most
important and deliberate omission from Paul was any mention of women`s
reproductive rights. Rand Paul and others on the right prefer to talk
about women`s equality in the work place as a distinct issue. There is
nothing to do with whether or not women can control their own bodies.

Right now the Democrats are making the argument the two cannot be
separated. The argument has been resonating with women for a good reason.
At least of which is that while Rand Paul may want to go on "Meet The
Press" and not talk about abortion or reproductive choice. He has a very
clear record on the issue.

In 2009, the AP wrote that Paul opposes abortion without exception.
Not even cases of rape, incest or the health of the expectant mother. In
2010, he filled out a questionnaire from the Kentucky Right to Life
Association reaffirming that he opposes abortion in cases of rape and
incest. In 2011, he tried to hold up a flood insurance bill with a fetal
personhood amendment to recognize life begins at conception and last year,
he introduced a similar give bill to give fertilized eggs the same legal
rights as people effectively outlawing abortion.

This week the House is expected to vote on the no-taxpayer funding
for abortion act, a bill that could effectively ban abortion coverage
through the new health care exchanges not just with taxpayer dollars, but
just with private money in those exchanges. And you know who one of the
original cosponsors of that bill? None other than Rand Paul who boasts on
his web site that I`m 100 percent pro-life and proud to be an original
cosponsor of no taxpayer funding for abortion act in the Senate.

Joining me now is Carmone, national reporter for MSNBC.com, Kay
Hymowitz, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and contributing
editor at "City Journal." She`s also the author of "Manning Up, How the
Rise Of Women Is Turning Men Into Boys," and Nancy Giles, contributor of
CBS "Sunday Morning."

OK, Kay, let me start with you. The reason I want to have you here,
I saw a talk you gave by the Manhattan Institute basically saying this war
on women thing is bunk. So wait. Do you think that let`s start with this.
Let`s separate out the questions of reproductive choice. Even though let
me put on the table I don`t think they`re separable because they have a lot
to do with women`s wage earnings and things like that.

Let`s separate it out for a second. When you look at that world
that Rand Paul is looking at with women going to veterinary school, do you
think he`s right? We basically achieved the quality?

KAY HYMOWITZ, AUTHOR, "MANNING UP": Well, I think if you look at the
wage gap and you just showed us an interesting chart there, you see the raw
numbers are extremely misleading. So for instance we hear all the time, we
just heard from the president recently that women only make 77 cents on the
dollar. Well, those are raw numbers. Its gross averages that don`t take
into account hours worked. They don`t take into account professions and
occupations.

And when you take all that into accounted and time offing for
having children, absolutely --then the numbers look very similar. And
there`s a recent paper that was just released by Claudia Golden at Harvard
basically saying, yes, we have achieved a kind of parody. When you take
all that into account --

HAYES: Right. And the taking into account gets me precisely at this
point. There`s this argument that you need to bracket out yes, what the
GOP wants to say, Irin is yes, we are a pro-life party, resolutely pro-
life. We are aggressively pro-life. We are aggressively anti-abortion.
We`re constantly waging this battle. But that has nothing to do with any
war on women. These are separable things. You can be for women`s equality
and against reproductive choice. That`s the argument they`re trying to
make. Why is that not a legitimate argument?

IRIN CARMON, MSNBC.COM: Well, they`re trying to go even further.
They are trying to say that the issues of abortion and contraception I
might add don`t even include women. That`s why every time a Republican
politician is asked about that they say I don`t know what they`re talking
about. They don`t say abortion is not a women`s issue because they know
that that`s kind of a laughable stance. The problem is that women keep
doing things that don`t fall into what they say women should do.

Women have abortions. One in three women will have an abortion in
her reproductive time. They don`t get married. They make choices that
don`t fit the Republican view. Rand Paul, the women in his family that are
doing well, that`s wonderful. Right, but I think --

HAYES: We all stipulated at the table.

CARMON: They`re still underrepresented in leadership roles. Even
white upper middle class women whose dads are congressmen are
underrepresented in leadership roles. They`re underrepresented in Congress
and ultimately it`s not the person bill that he said would restrict birth
control. So we`re talking about a range of things that sort of before
women can get to the point where they achieve leadership, the choices are
constrained.

HAYES: And when you hear the rhetoric, are you hearing this as they
keep stepping in it because they`re mucking up the messaging, or is there
something deeper here?

NANCY GILES, CONTRIBUTOR, CBS SUNDAY MORNING: I think it`s deeper. I
would just elaborate on what Irin is saying. It`s almost as if, we`ll just
start with Rand Paul saying what he said about the women in his life who
are so successful. It reminded me of the "Duck Dynasty" man and said the
black people he knew were laughing. There was no need for civil rights.
If you talk with a very limited group, you`re going to get the answer you
want, number one. Number two, it`s as if they`re not living in the world
we live in. Women have sex. Men have sex.

They don`t have to carry children. If they did, this wouldn`t
be discussible. But I don`t think people even realize how screwy a
religious look at what marriage is supposed to be is. I`m of an age where
if I got married I couldn`t have children. Not being able to be fruitful
and multiply makes me null and void.

HAYES: So I would like to hear you weigh in, which is I think part of
what`s deep here, right, there`s a deep question about female sexuality,
reproductive autonomy? But even deeper that is this question of like do
they want to stand for traditional gender roles or not? It`s clear one
does not stand for that. And I think there`s actual dissent within the
conservative movement whether they actually want to be for traditional
gender roles or not.

HYMOWITZ: I agree. You`re describing the positions of what I see as
fairly extreme positions and you know they do have a big following. I
don`t deny that. But I think there`s a mistake in assuming that there`s
this black and white kind of approach to abortion. Maybe not so much
contraception, I mean abortion. Let`s take abortion. So if you look at
the polls, I mean, women it`s not clear that a war against women would mean
--

HAYES: But that`s a really important point, I think, right. That
gets to what exactly is deep here. Which is that when you look, when you
ask, when you pull on abortion, you don`t see anywhere near the gender gap
that you would expect.

HYMOWITZ: That you would expect!

HAYES: But if you looked at the voting behavior and who was elected
in different respects. So I want to get what is going on other than that.
We`ll take that right after this commercial break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: We`re back. I`m here with Irin Carmon, Kay Hymowitz and Nancy
Giles. You just made the point about the fact that in the polling,
specifically in the polling on abortion, there is not a massive gender gap
between men and women, and you were going to respond.

CARMON: OK, so the way that people vote is not necessarily what they
tell pollsters, right. In the last few elections where abortion has been
on the agenda, the 20-week abortion ban in Albuquerque, Virginia, the
governor`s race, women from broken either for the candidate or issue that
did not involve restricting abortion. Just because a majority of people
say they`re pro-life, that`s a public relations issue.

When it actually comes down to politicians talking in an extreme way
about people`s body, that sees abortion as an issue about sex and
controlling women, that is when women start to go for the candidate that is
not interested in doing that.

HAYES: And particularly in the case of Virginia, talking about
unmarried women versus married women, right. Married women, actually
there`s not a huge partisan gender gap between voters. There`s a massive
gap.

GILES: I have to jump in. I feel like there`s a basic
misunderstanding about abortions, and I`m not speaking for any particular
group. I`m just saying this from a woman`s point of view. There`s no
woman who jumps up in the morning dancing and singing I want to go have an
abortion. Most people are not pro-abortion. The other side is hijack
prolife, making anybody not that anti-life and it`s not that simple.

HAYES: You`re right. In fact, the polling does show, when you say
it`s not that simple, and so here`s what is interesting. Public opinion on
abortion is complex. It`s textured. It isn`t censored. When you ask
questions in different ways you get different responses. And there`s a
constant battle on both sides. But I think when the rubber hits the road,
right, which is like this thing is on the ballot, the data is pretty clear
in that respect.

HYMOWITZ: Well, it depends what the issues are. If the issue is sex
election in an abortion -- it may not, but there are laws out there or on
the books. If there are issues about parental notification, where do they
go? I`m not so sure.

CARMON: It`s quote in which the pro-lifers seem to win.

HYMOWITZ: All I`m saying is while some of what we`re describing is
extreme. Some is really gray area.

HAYES: It`s not a gray area. Is it`s the fights that Republicans are
picking legislatively and it`s also the way they`re talking about it.
Huckabee has been making this tour of woe is me. Everybody is beating up
on me. If you did not say libido and Uncle Sugar, you would not get beat
up. No one made you say libido.

CARMON: How you can say it`s not about sex when you keep pushing it
into the conversation. You`re not talking about concern for the unborn.
You`re talking about what women put in their bodies.

GILES: Sexually, they`re trying to put a hammer down on anything that
we do. It`s not only absurd from an economic standpoint, it`s really,
really mean. Women who don`t have access to Planned Parenthood and good
birth control and good medical choices, they`re the ones who get burned the
worst.

HAYES: So respond to that. So the contention that you take issue is
they are trying to control women`s sexuality. It`s a goal of republicans
in the conservative movement to do that.

HYMOWITZ: It depends which republican conservatives you`re talking
about.

HAYES: The one who is running the show in the House of
Representatives?

HYMOWITZ: There are plenty of more moderate republicans. I don`t
actually want to get into that so much as to say, look, just as Republicans
are over playing their hand on this, and I really do think they are and
they`re risking their futures. There`s no question about it. I think the
other side can risk overstating the war on women and creating their own.
For instance, it`s one thing to be if your enemy is Todd Aiken. It`s
another if your enemy is Little Sister of The Poor.

HAYES: I`m totally fascinated on the Little Sister of The Poor and
hobby lobby case. I think both sides think they have the better of the
argument. Not just substantively, but politically, and we`re going to set
it get pulled out when the decision happens.

Irin Carmon from msnbc.com, Kay Hymowitz from the Manhattan
Institute and Nancy Giles from CBS Sunday Morning, thank you. That is
great. That is ALL IN for this evening. "THE RACHEL MADDOW" show starts
right now. Good evening, Rachel.

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

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