Welcome to an HBO podcast from the HBO series Real Time with Bill Maher. Thank you, I appropriately space. I appreciate it. Welcome to. It did it came down to brave the pandemic. I appreciate it. Thank you. All right, I know we're all very, very close for four days before the election, as Stormy Daniels once said this, let's just get this over with.
Right. Isn't that how I tell you everything is going on at once, the election and it's fucking Halloween tomorrow and you know, there's a full moon and we got to set our clocks back and do that. Melania loves that, by the way. She gets she gets an extra hour of pretending she's asleep.
But this election is over, you know, over 80 million people have voted already.
And the Supreme Court says some even may be counted, so that's no, we never had anything like this amount of early voting.
Are you kidding? That's good. You know what they say? The early bird votes out the worm.
And how about, you know, how about a big thank you to the postal workers of America? I know they get a lot of. Trump tried to make it hard for them, Trump has not been this scared of the mail since the draft. Not that not that he's giving up, by the way, there's a lot of voter intimidation going on out there. Have you seen that on the news? A lot of Trump thugs harassing likely Biden voters.
You know, the poll watchers, they call themselves poll. You know what? If you see one of these poll watchers point at your crotch and go, you know what? You can watch this poll.
I got a call. You can watch. Trump has been having is this a coincidence? He's been having three rallies a day and also covid-19 infection rates are the highest ever. It's almost as if someone has been traveling around the country super spreading.
It's like. Drugs like if I'm going down, I'm taking everybody with me, but not here in California. Our rate is low compared to the rest of the country because he doesn't come here, because he doesn't come here.
If we want covid here, we'll get it the old fashioned way from Justin Turner, yeah, there was also it and that now went all through the White House.
Now, pense there was a big outbreak and Mike Pence, his office, five of his aides were tested positive and his fly is on a ventilator.
I love this story, Phil Collins, latest musician. A lot of them have had to do that to tell Trump, stop using my music. The Rolling Stones did this. Aerosmith had to tell them. Neil Young, Elton John. Boy, it is not easy being a baby boomer Trump fan. An entire playlist hates you.
And of course, we have a new Supreme Court justice, Amy Connie Barrett was sworn on Monday, newest Supreme Court judge, and this was eight days before an election.
Wow. That's like marrying a woman after her water breaks.
Really, I mean, she went to the courts the other day, Ruth Bader Ginsburg still had stuff in the fridge.
Watch what was so wrong about that one. We've got to get the full crowd back. There's always going to be 20 with the stick up their ass. Now the writing is on the wall there with the Supreme Court on Roe versus Wade getting overturned, are you kidding? I was driving to work today. I passed a Planned Parenthood there to sign out front now providing anal bleaching.
OK, so this is it.
Oh, you like anal bleaching is OK, but Ruth Bader Ginsburg refrigerator was out of bounds. I will never understand audiences. OK, so this is it, folks, right?
Are you ready? Did you vote? Are you going to vote?
I mean, this is this is the moment. I'm not going to see sing again until after. I'll see you on the other side. Vote your conscience. And by the way, this selection for this election, if you voted third party, we're going to give you a sticker that says I farted.
All right. We've got a great show. We have John Heilemann and Liz Smith. And a little later, we'll be speaking with author David Sanger. But first up, he is the former Democratic senator from Minnesota who now hosts the Al Franken podcast, Al Franken.
All your papers are sticking out of your pocket. Oh, yeah, I got it. Oh, by the way, thanks for the free covid test.
Oh, our pleasure. For some for life. And you nervous? I mean, it's election time. Does it get the old juices flowing?
Do you remember the old days when you used to have been following for quite a while during a cycle. But, you know you know, you have said for two years, I think you're the first one to say that over two years, you know. Yeah, get going. What if he won't leave? And my answer to that is, that's great, because if he won't leave, that means he lost and he will be escorted out and I'll pick him up and take him wherever he wants to go.
Well, that's it. You know, this is what Democrats keep saying and, you know, Democrats have been wrong about so much. So excuse me if I'm not so sanguine as you are about this. Oh, but escorted out.
This is what happens in other countries. We've seen this in many other countries. Now we are one of those countries. Maybe I should point out to you, but I didn't mean.
I know. I'm afraid he'll steal it if that's what you're talking about. What I'm talking about is if he says there's easily a scenario which you can see where he said he's never going to concede, so he's going to say all kinds of shit about what I'm hearing.
I'm hearing about ballots. I'm hearing about this.
And then he has a lot of enablers in courts and legislatures. OK, so it comes to January 20th. He's saying we've got to suspend this until we find out what the hell is going on. And then I know you guys keep saying he'll be escorted out by people in the government.
He is the government now, January 20th by the dialogue with Joe Biden. If this scenario happens, Joe Biden will be the president at noon. He will get taken, escorted out.
That's if listen, what you're telling your story is perhaps what you're talking about is the boogaloo boys. And everybody I'm talking about is at the point that the commander in chief says this election has been rigged. It's not fair. I'm still president until we figure it out. We don't know what will happen.
Let's agree to this agreement. Yeah, we don't know. But look, you're one of the few liberals who the military likes. Really, you are you played many USA. You're welcome there they trust you, they like you. What's your assessment on if they have to get involved?
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Milley, will take him out.
So you OK? Well. OK, I hope so, but, you know, it may not come down to him, he's it shouldn't. It shouldn't. It shouldn't. I know it's a thing that shouldn't happen along the way, that he's going to try to steal it.
That's why it is so important for everybody to vote.
And I I won my first election by 312 votes, you know, right hand recounts.
Right. I had a recount.
They and I didn't get there till July. And they I won the recount actually in January, but they did legal stuff to keep me out. But if it weren't for those three hundred and twelve votes, we wouldn't have the Affordable Care Act because I was the sixtieth vote.
So this is what this was.
This is what this was about, this was I want your audience to go to Joe Biden dot com slash call, because I know everybody tells me I'm so nervous I can't wait to do something.
And you call there, they will give you people in battleground states if you live in L.A., they won't give you somebody across the street.
And listen, you can.
You ignore your family. You can do that here. Here's you don't have to cook meals for them. Scientific proof of a seven year old can use a microwave oven and scientifically been proven that a seven year old can teach a four year old to use a microwave oven.
So you guys, what does that have to do with Biden getting you don't have children.
You know, I do know that happily so. I know. I know. OK. All right. Let's not forget, we have to fight about that. No, no, we're not fighting, OK? All right. You know what I'm saying? You seem hostile about that. You do not have children and happily so. Yeah, and you do. That's great. We're different people. I know. It's Bill. I am so happy you don't have children because you don't want to have children.
I think I'm so happy, too. Here's what that man here.
Yes, you should be. Here's here's what they tell me. Yeah. Here's what the joke means. When you're a parent, you often have to prepare food for kids.
But if you're not, if you're lazy about it, you can put it in the microwave. I had a seven year old knows how to do that. And I'm saying scientific fact, which really isn't.
But we all know it is.
And then the scientific fact, I went even further with the joke.
And, you know, this is scientifically proven that a four year old, a seven year old can teach a four year old.
Right, right, yeah, yes, yes. But that's not what we want to talk about. I know that it's true that kids say the darndest things is that is that I've heard that off there. So frickin cute.
And by the way, I did take an insult from the from the I did marry Franni immediately after her water broke. Yeah.
That's also a joke. Yeah. If anyone should not like that joke, it should be. It's Franni kids. Let's click let's listen, we got a little clip. Let's let's get on to the I mean, what's even more important than kids in microwaves is the Senate.
How about that for a is the Senate? The Senate?
I mean, absolutely. Your old place of business where you used to work there. If Biden wins and doesn't have the Senate, it's pointless. Mitch McConnell will stop everything. Right. He filibustered more appointees of Obama's than had been filibustered in the entire his previous history in the United States. Right. And believe me, we don't want him to be the majority. He's not as charming as he looks.
So we have to have opportunities in Maine, in North Carolina, South Carolina, too, in Georgia. Mississippi was in play. Iowa, Kansas is in play. Alaska is in play.
Colorado, we should win Montana and Arizona.
But if you call folks and you can just go back and watch the tape and see where it was, I won't do that again.
Play back to the part about the microwave, though. It's fantastic. It's gold. You see, a lot of people don't understand frozen dinners and.
OK, so we've got to right and but you mentioned Lindsey Graham, did you?
You work with people like that, you and you, besides being liked by the military, you also were liked by Republicans as much as they can. Like someone on the other team. Lindsey and I were friendly. Oh, OK. I know what you're doing there.
No, I didn't. And anyone who starts a sentence, Lindsey and I'm interested.
Listen, there is sort of an open secret in DC, and that is Lindsey is a compulsive shoplifter and they have video of him lifting a gravy boat from a Pottery Barn and the people of South Carolina.
They they they're very religious, they'll forgive anything, but they just they love their gravy. Now, that's not fake news, is it? You wouldn't indulge also, I was like the microwave. I understood.
So so a joke. I roll a little rusty. Yeah.
So, yeah, it's nice to have an audience. It is not. It's it's what. It's fantastic. Thank you guys. It is. So, OK, so my final thing is I was going to say you were friendly with the Republicans, say everything goes the way you say it. Well, they tent the White House and make Trump believe.
I don't I don't see it happening, but they do.
And on January 20th, my sixty fifth birthday, we have a new president.
How do we get back to normal?
How do we get back to at least where we were, which wasn't good, but better than horrible as such a great question. You have eight seconds.
I don't know what the answer is, is that we probably can't because there's two universes of information. Right?
Remember when I wrote Rush Limbaugh's a Big Fat Idiot and other observations and I wrote Lies and the lying liars.
They tell lies, lying liars who tell them a fair and balanced look at the right. And that was about Fox Rush. That book was about Rush.
And he gets the Presidential Medal of Freedom in a war that was given to Cesar Chavez, to Martin Luther King Jr., to the Apollo 13 astronauts and Rush.
But it's because if it weren't for Rush, Trump wouldn't have been there. Right. All right. Well, thank you. We miss you.
Hope to see you soon. All right. Let's bring in our panel. All right. OK, here's the executive editor of the Rinka and executive producer of host of Showtime's The Circus. John Heilemann is over here.
John Heilemann. Appropriately distance from me, and she's a Democratic strategist and former senior adviser to Mayor Pubertal Judge appropriately distance Liz Smith is over here. How are you doing? OK, guys, I'm so glad you guys are here, because it is right before the election and you two are lifers with elections, right? I mean, you guys you have feel for elections that I don't think I quite have because I'm still I don't know. You know, the polls are so up for Biden.
And then when I see, like in the on the streets, in the countryside, people I know know Pennsylvania and Ohio. And they say all you see is Trump. Trump signs, Trump flags, Trump parades. And we've had at Beverly Hills, we've you saw it in Times Square in New York. Is it just because they're loud and proud and armed? Yeah. You know, oh, yeah. There's some of it we could see. And and the Biden people are like, OK, you know what?
We don't need to engage. You guys are intimidating, Will. We'll do it in the voting booth.
Yes. So that's it. No, I don't think that's it. You're right. You do not see Biden people walking around in these bright red hats putting 10 flags in their yard. Right. You know why? Because we're not members of a cult. OK. And you don't see Joe Biden telling his supporters to pack into a super spreader event that is going to put his supporters at risk for health complications, right. Because Joe Biden is not a cult leader.
OK, and we need to get away from this sort of cult of personality that has sometimes has dominated politics, I think recently. But more importantly, you know, there's so many signs of enthusiasm. Youth enthusiasm is up.
Biden said independents, seniors, that he's beating Trump with women by 25. Yes. Can you win an election if you lose women by twenty five?
Well, it's hard if you're losing women, college educated voters, suburban voters and senior citizens, losing them all by large, not by large increments.
And I would say, Bill, you know, it's been fascinating. We've been making the circus. Now we're in our 12th at the end of our 12th episode. So we've been out in the field following the campaign, doing what a lot of people are doing, which is like out there in the world covering this. Right. And everything Liz says is true. And Joe Biden has not done a lot of it, does not do as many events as Donald Trump.
He does want to be the Johnny Appleseed of covid, you know, going around the country.
And and and really, I mean, it is the case that Donald Trump right now is the most irresponsible person on planet Earth when it comes to this.
Every penny of it is going. Every day we used to criticize Trump for not trying to bring the country together and being only focused on his base right now.
He goes and does he's done four or five events a day. He's going to finish this thing with 17 events in the course of the next three days. Every single one of them, he's threatening to kill every single person who shows up and every single person that those people meet at the Starbucks later. Right. So he doesn't care. He's like, get covid, stay alive long enough to vote for me. And I don't give a shit if you die.
He only cares about himself. So that's true. Yeah. And Joe Biden is not doing that.
Right. He's doing, you know, events that follow CDC guidelines, et cetera, et cetera. But you know what? I know you see Democratic enthusiasm, 86 million three hundred ninety four thousand seven hundred and seven votes have been cast in this country already.
That's so astronomically far off the charts really vote ever in the history of the country. Right.
And the vast majority of them. We know from company registration, we know from party registration. The vast majority of our Democrats now Republicans may make up that that shortfall. They may make it all up on Election Day. But today, where you see Democratic enthusiasm and whether that's for Joe Biden or if it's mostly for getting Donald Trump the fuck out of town.
Yeah. Is in those giant lines that you've see. We've been watching them on television for the last month. You look at those big lines, that's your Democratic enthusiasm.
It's those people who are standing in line in the cold for four, six hours a day.
Great speech. I would add one other thing. If you're elected, I would add one other thing that I'm not wrong. Feel better about 2020 versus 2016 is in 2016. Trump was a theory. He was an idea. You know, let's burn the house down now. It's a reality. And now everyone who voted for him realizes that he burned down the House. Hardly ever. OK, but I mean, lots of people like I mean, the voters, not the Trump supporters.
Right. And there is a big difference. And between Trump voters and Trump supporters. Right. Trump voters are not the people wearing the red hats. Right. And those are the people that we are seeing who is coming back. And the Democrats, he definitely lost a lot of people.
OK, so let me ask you about Philadelphia. A lot of trouble in Philadelphia. And I have to say, I like Trump right now. When you say that while people in Philadelphia. Well, there is. There's not.
No, no. I'm just saying he's going to tell us you were just talking about before trouble in Philadelphia. He likes picking up Philadelphia's Mike.
Right. Well, let me explain to people who have been following what's going on there in Philadelphia. It's a familiar script. From 2020, there was a shooting of a black man by the police, followed by killed him, protests, then looting. National Guard called out curfew. We've seen this before. The guy was mentally unstable, had a knife. My two things. One, police have to look. Was this racism?
I don't know. No one will ever know whether they would have shot him, whether he was white or black. But what I do know, and I've been saying this about the police for years, they have to find a way to not kill people who you could do it.
You could get rid of the knife from a guy without killing him.
Yeah, this this to me is more about maybe the race is maybe more about tactics and training and this attitude that the police have that our lives are somehow more valuable. I'm not saying they're less valuable, but they're not more precious. You could get you could diffuse a guy with a knife without firing 14 slugs.
You can't. Police have got to stop this attitude. This you know, this is what Stalin used to say. No person, no problem, right? Yes, exactly. If there's no person, there's no problem. But that can't be the way to do it.
Right. And I think that if we want those sort of common sense reforms, you know, de-escalation, trainings, things like that, and police in police departments across the country, you know, Biden is the way to go. I know that Donald Trump is trying to exploit this and exploit some of the violence that has erupted in Philadelphia after the fact. But, you know, he contributes to the atmosphere that has created that. And I think that if he's trying to win over the suburbs so suburban moms, my guess is that suburban women, suburban moms are a lot more pissed off seeing a son shot and killed to death in front of his own mother than they are seeing, you know, a few stores being looted.
But here's my other question about Trump said to the proud boys, his little paramilitary group, stand down and stand by, you know, which was his way of saying wait till the election is over before ginning up the other side. I feel like maybe the left should say this in Philadelphia. I feel like maybe this is a gift to Donald Trump.
I feel like when people see a city on fire, first of all, they may not want to go to the polls if things are on fire and you need Philadelphia to win Pennsylvania and you need Pennsylvania probably to win the White House, or it certainly may be. And Hillary, one reason why she lost was because she underperformed in Philadelphia.
There's there's going to be a lot of there's going to be a lot of unfortunately, give me a lot of complexity and a lot of chaos.
And unfortunately, Pennsylvania, over the course of the next week, Bill, and I think, you know, and some of it relates to this problem and some of it relates to larger problems, some of as it relates to the fact the Postal Service has been cut back and that the things that we should have done that the federal government should have done, if the president had cared about making sure everyone could vote safely, like funding a big, you know, help, help make the vote safe for people effort, once the pandemic hit, all of that would have been reduced.
So Pennsylvania is going to be a shit show next week, I'm certain. And it's obviously it's a crucial state in terms of both candidates paths to 270 electoral votes.
But I don't know what Joe Biden could say more than what he said about the leaders of the protests there.
I'm saying I feel like, you know, it's kind of ironic, but I feel like what you saying? We're you think somebody should say this to the protesters, the Democrats, yes, but not Joe Biden. Maybe you believe the Democrats. He should, too, but also they themselves. I feel like sometimes I read about these protests, like in Portland, and it's like it's like white people leading these protests about black rights. And I feel like one of the ultimate ways of showing white privilege is to not have to think practically.
You know, I feel like the black folks save the Democratic Party because they thought practically that's why we wound up with Joe Biden, because they didn't.
You know, and that's that's a good question. What what where would we be now? Let me ask that. Where would we be now if the candidate was Elizabeth Warren or Bernie or Pete Budha?
So with Pete, I think Pete would be probably running similar to Joe Biden, because I think that they appeal to the same part of the party with Elizabeth Warren and Sanders. That's more of an open question. But, you know, I remember sitting here six months ago with you and and we were debating, is Joe Biden going to meet the moment? Is he going to be able to generate enthusiasm? And goddamn, yes, he has not been so surprised by it.
And he has met the moment with his seriousness in a way that I never thought possible.
And here's the thing, Bill. I think that, you know, as we've seen in a lot of these cases, there have been a ton of peaceful protests since George Floyd. Some of those protests have gotten out of hand. There's been looting, there's been violence, all of it unacceptable. And and to the extent that it got out of control in various places like Seattle, in some other cities, and to the extent that it might in Philadelphia, it is ostensibly a political gift to Donald Trump.
Trump has tried to capitalize on that. And what we've seen is him from Kenosha to other places. He's tried to make that argument that Joe Biden as president would be the president for looting and rioting and cities out of control.
And as we sit here today and every national poll that's been done over the course of the last couple of weeks, Joe Biden continues to beat Donald Trump on the issue of law and order pretty consistently because of the fact that he's not been a left Democrat who's been soft on that question.
He made a choice after the Republican convention came out and said looting and rioting is bad. There's no place for it. There's a place for peaceful protests, not for looting and rioting.
And by making that choice, which was, you know, not there are a lot of Democrats who would have, I think, not stood up and made that argument. Biden did. And it helped to diffuse that issue.
It is in the context of the election. I thought his best moment at the debates was when he said this guy doesn't know he's running against Joe Biden. Right. I beat those other people because. Yeah, exactly. So. All right. So we have a new Supreme Court justice. Amy, tell me it's a hard name to say I'm going to ACB and we're going to get it done. OK, she is making it almost a completely Catholic court, which I like to point out.
And she's not just a Catholic. She's she's a Mel Gibson's dad, Catholic.
This is. She's used the Catholics as you are to atheist. Yes, I mean, this is like a court that looks like The Da Vinci Code now. So we thought it would be a good time to do one of our favorite bits, 24 Things You Don't Know about Amy Barrack.
Twenty four. Twenty four, not twenty five. They stole that from us, all right. Like, for example, when my family play Scrabble, we take out the letters LGBTQ you.
It's the things you don't know about Amy me, but I won't eat Chinese food because fortune cookies look like vaginas.
Yeah, that sounds like. When I'm stressed out, I'll eat a whole box of Eucharist. I'm a classically trained lawyer. My volleyball team was 10 and three against the other coaches in our division. I believe the Spanish Inquisition had fine people on both sides. In college, I refused the title Magna cum Loudy because it sounds dirty. And I'm looking forward to getting some real hands on experience, being in judge. Can I double down on my vitriol for Amy, Cumi, Coning, Cumi, whatever it is?
Oh, please, please do. OK. She is part of a cult. And I don't just mean the Catholic Church. I mean, she's a cult within a cult. You the people of praise, I mean, snake handlers, snake handlers, people who talk in tongues, speak in tongues, but just babbling. You know this they get messages from the Holy Spirit talking to ghosts.
OK, if you took religion out of this, this you would say this is a fucking nut.
What do we do?
We really have to keep pretending that being part of this is not going to affect someone who is in one of the most powerful positions in the world making judgments about climate change, for example.
Now, I've had arguments. I remember having one in the dorm room once in college where someone went on for like three hours as bullshit dorm room arguments you had. And at the end of it, he just said, because Jesus Christ is going to come down and say this now, why did I waste three hours arguing with you?
Because that's what's in your head. Jesus is going to save us. And that's who we have making decisions now.
Yeah. I mean, ultimately, for me, you know, I don't know about the whole cult thing, and I know I'm right about that. But I like the fact that she wants to strike down the ACA. The fact that she wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, that matters a lot more to me, honestly, than, you know, whatever religion she practiced.
But it comes from the religion. So why are you separating them?
You don't need to be religious to believe in those things and we should help. OK, Brett Kavanaugh, look at him. Another one. Well, another Catholic. Not on the court exactly.
But I do think that the more that we focus on what these people actually want to do and how it will impact everyone's lives, the better it will be. Because you know that the Republicans will just say we are a bunch of anti Catholic bigots. I don't care.
It's the truth. We can't have a country. We have a country that is increasingly liberal and secular and we have a Supreme Court that is increasingly doctrinaire.
Yeah, that's not going to work. Yeah. So she's so she's on the court, though, right? There's no that's a done deal. So, yes, I mean, I think the question now before us and particularly before the Democratic Party, as Joe Biden, if he wins the presidency, which I continue to think is likely but not certain, is going to be this question of are this Democrat Party going to get behind the notion of trying to increase the number of justices on the court?
And that will be a a big question going forward. And, you know, Joe Biden is clearly, instinctually not in that does not like that idea, has not had a lot of enthusiasm, but a lot of Democrats think it's you know, the Republicans have not played fair.
They have attacked the court already. And so it's time to increase the number.
It's called court packing. Can I ask you to run campaigns very successfully? Very good. I was thinking, why are the Democrats so bad at messaging court packing? They can't change the term. It sounds corrupt. It's associated with corruption. No one likes it. And yet they keep they keep using the term. OK, can't they have meetings like that, like the Republicans have Frank Luntz and tell them how to talk about something? I would actually disagree with you.
I think that's the term that's used often in the media. I worked for Pete. He was the one candidate in the primary that was for it. He proposed well, not for court packing law, for expanding the court and court reform. Well, that's what I just said. Why can't we call it. Yes, that's already done that. Yeah, that's what he called it. Right. And no, but I think that's right, because court packing does have a negative connotation.
And I think no matter what side of the aisle you're on, you've got to be able to admit that the way things are happening right now, it's not sustainable. Right. And the Supreme Court has gone the way of the U.S. Senate. It is not an August institution has become completely partisan. And the fact that we let people just sit there until, you know, into their 90s and making decisions and you've got to just fundamentally change the way that we do it, whether it's term limits, whether it's extending the number of justices, whether it's having like five liberal, five Republican, five middle of the road justices.
But the days of having sort of swing votes on the Supreme Court are done. And I think that is really, really troubling development first.
And I'll say I'll just say the Wizards, the Wizards point earlier, the thing that's going to happen, that's going to make court packing or expanding the court, whatever you want to call it, going to make it real popular is if this court overrules the tosses out the ACA and overturns Roe v. Wade, then that's I mean, I think you're right, Bill. The country is getting more secular. But here's where the country really is. The country is really in favor of the Affordable Care Act now, and the country is broadly in favor of abortion rights.
And so you have a court now that has been that has been packed by Republicans goes and does those two things.
Watch how fast the public will want to see the court packed or expanded or grown reform reform for everyone, whatever it is, we'll see that move across the Atlantic.
So, OK, so let's imagine Joe Biden wins this election and somehow he takes office on January 20th. Imagine again, we'll just imagine we'll see what's going to happen with the Republican Party. It's interesting because there's going to have to be some sort of civil war, right? There's going to be the people who still want to stay with the Trump model and maybe a sort of, you know, restoration. Yeah.
And by the way, I hate to tell you this, folks, but if he loses, he can run in twenty, twenty four, you know, no, it's even worse because the day he loses Donald Trump, Junior becomes the presumptive front runner for the Republican.
Not while Daddy's still alive. He doesn't hear that he will run until he's one hundred and twelve.
Tucker Carlson, you know, like those are going to be some of the top choices.
OK, but what is Donald Trump like outside the tent pissing in?
Well, he's he's the most he's the most powerful voice. He's the most powerful voice in the Republican Party who gets beat and goes and buys OCN or gets installed the of bow and starts a media network and becomes a voice, you know, the crazy right wing television network that you know well.
Anyway, don't don't watch.
You don't want to break the break out of your way further, right. Than Fox News. Come on. Wait for the way the Breitbart it really exists. And one of the one of the reporters gets to go, the White House press conferences and ask questions that Trump loves. But Trump on the outside becomes the leader of now what is will be a hashtag resistance to the tweet to the Joe Biden Democrats who will be seen as having stolen this election.
40 percent of the country will think this was a coup. Trump will say it was all rigged. He will become the voice of leading, of keeping Trump ism alive and and lives exactly right. Whether it's Donge. But I'm asking, where did where do the Republicans will win that? Donald Trump is a big, fat liar, to quote Al Franken. But he's right about this. He's got the support of 92, 93 percent, the Republican Party.
So the party is Donald Trump's party, but it's going to still be Donald Trump's party even when he loses.
Yes. So naturally, Trump ism has infected that party and he's going to take at least a decade, if not a lifetime, to exercise it. You know, and I do not see Larry Hogan. I don't see. Charlie Baker coming in to take the reins of that party. I just don't think the party of white grievance and it will still be the party of white grievance if Donald Trump's not the head of it anymore.
And that will be still. And and Don Jr. or Tom Cotton or somebody else like that will become that will be there will be some resistance.
There'll be some people on the on the moderate side, whatever's left of that.
But that is a shriveled, desiccated part of the party.
The part the vibrance of the party is now is racist, populist, xenophobic, white grievance.
That's what the Republican Party is now. So they will never be. They will not be held accountable for not doing the one thing you're supposed to do when you get elected, which is policy. I agree they don't do policy.
They do make you cry. Your liberal tears. Exactly. And they won't get there was no there'll be no accounting. There was no Republican platform in 2020, Bill. There was no platform. They abolished the platform. That's their policy now was whatever Trump says goes. And and if you abolish your platform, you were a party without policy by definition.
The platform is triggering the Libs and basically fuck your feelings, OK. All right. What a great note to break out. David, here. Yes. The New York Times national security correspondent, an executive producer of the new HBO documentary The Perfect Weapon, based on his book of the same title now streaming on HBO Max. David Sanger.
David. Great to be with you, Bill. Great to have you here by Zoom. So your book here, the documentary, Fantastic. It's about cyber warfare. And I feel like this election that we're about to have is a battle in this war. And I would hesitate to even say this is the future of warfare, cyber warfare. I feel like it's actually the present of warfare and people haven't caught on to that yet.
Would you agree with that assessment?
Well, it's definitely the present. And it's so far, Bill, we've been lucky. It's been instead of warfare, it's been sort of low level, daily, constant conflict. But everybody's been really careful, even the Russians, not to take it right up to that notch that would lead to a military conflict. And that's what makes the next few days so really fascinating, because as we describe it, as John Nagios laid out so well and as the director of the of the documentary, what happens over the next week, whether the Russians feel like they've been beaten back by U.S. Cyber Command, by all the publicity or whether or not they feel like they can go mess with the election.
And the Iranians, too, may well decide what's going on and it may well decide whether Donald Trump can stand up and say, oh, there's been foreign interference. We need to stop and think about where these electors came from.
Well, you mentioned the Iranians. It's interesting. I read a story about the proud boys, which, as we mentioned here earlier there, kind of a paramilitary group that work for Trump. And there was some stuff attributed to them online. And then it turned out or it was said that this was the Iranians posing as the proud boys. And we've seen this before. People try to get people on the other side excited. They're trying to sow chaos and divisiveness.
So it wasn't really the prod boys posting that. It was the Iranians. And then I read it was possibly the Russians posing as the Iranians, posing as the proud boys.
So we're living in this hall of mirrors edge where we don't know who is doing what or where it's coming from. How do we counter that? Well, you know, as Donald Trump famously said four years ago, it could have been a 400 pound guy sitting at the edge of his bed. Right.
In this particular case, U.S. intelligence pretty quickly tracked down that these emails were coming from the Iranians.
And did you read any of the emails? Yeah. I mean, they they read a little bit like the script writers from Borat had been writing emails out there.
They weren't the smoothest thing that was ever done. They routed them through Saudi Arabia and to Estonia, and it got delivered to a few hundred people in Florida and Alaska, maybe a few few others. That was pretty amateur work. What worries me more out of this bill is some other things we've seen happen in the past two weeks. The the Russians moved there 18, the group that broke into all of the American utilities, the power grid, they haven't turned off the tower yet.
They know that would be a step too far. But they're beginning to focus on state and local government. So far, they haven't touched the election infrastructure. Maybe they will next week. Maybe they just did it to psychos out. But as you say, it's a hall of mirrors and really nothing is safe.
I mean, we saw this with corporations. We remember the Sony hack was I think it was 2014 because, you know, they put out a Seth Rogen movie and North Korea didn't like it. And everybody's emails and we found out about what was going on with the executives at Sony. And Sheldon Adelson got hacked because they didn't like something. He said, I didn't like it either. But it's, you know, the city of Baltimore. Got it.
Now we're seeing ransomware. We're seeing hospitals are being threatened and targeted because of the pandemic and and these hackers know or they can't afford to have their stuff shut down right now. They can't afford to have their technology locked up. There is no defense, really. It's a little like I feel like when they started stealing music and everybody panicked and then everybody just went, we can't stop this, we just have to give it away. We have to go to streaming or whatever.
And musicians make nothing, really, unless they tour because you just can't stop it.
We don't know how to do that. Is that correct?
Part of it is correct. And part of it, we're learning how to stop. So take a look at some of the hacks you mentioned. Sony was one of the most interesting. And in the documentary, Seth Rogen sort of takes you through this as as the victim.
But that was a geopolitical hack. They didn't get hacked because somebody wanted to get money out of Sony. They got hacked by the North Koreans because the North Koreans wanted to stop a movie. That invasion, the assassination of Kim Jong un seemed pretty funny. And Hollywood didn't seem so friendly to the North Koreans. And Sony was wide open. It took the North Koreans I mean, the North Koreans, Bill, and not exactly the top of the game here, just days to break into Sony.
And while you mentioned that they released emails and they did, the most interesting thing is they melted down about 70 percent of Sony's computer systems.
So you're saying that Sony could not be hacked today?
I bet I'm not saying they couldn't be hacked today. I'm saying it was no effort in 2014, the Sands Casino, which was Sheldon Adelson Casino. Why were they had? Because Adelson had suggested and I talk at the university that we drop a nuclear weapon in the Iranian desert and show the Iranians a lesson. And they said Desert guy's got a casino. Be real shame. Right. So those were two where I think we probably could have protected against it.
The harder question is the disinformation issues and the question of whether or not you can protect something as broad as the election infrastructure next week. I'm not that worried about the voting machines, but the registration systems that you see what happened when the governor of Florida went to go vote last Monday. It turned out some hacker had gotten in and changed his registration from Tallahassee to West Palm Beach. Now, if he could do it right hard, can that be what I'm saying?
I feel like we're always fighting the last war. I feel like if you have this technology, if you have hackers, if you can do this, why wouldn't you? You mentioned in the book and it's in the documentary that we started this with Stuxnet in 2007. We were the first ones we wanted to cripple the Iranian nuclear facilities. We did it with a hack, just as if we had sent B1 bombers. It had the exact same effect. And that's what I mean about the last war.
Aircraft carriers are fax machines.
They don't. That's not where it is anymore. That's that's absolutely right. And yet we're spending far more on the aircraft carriers, the airplanes and all that than we are the cyber weapons.
The Stuxnet hack, which was codenamed Olympic Games, was really fascinating because on the one hand, we were able to go cripple the Iranian program for maybe a year or so. The United States was able to do that. On the other hand, it legitimized this form of conflict. And as President Obama warned his staff in The Situation Room, as he was approving some of these, sooner or later, every country that wants to attack us anyway is going to say the Americans are doing it.
Why can't we? Right.
All right, David, great work. Great. Thank you for your work.
Thanks very much. Thanks for that. Now it's time for new rules. Everybody knows. All right, new rule, if you test positive for covid-19 in the middle of a baseball game like Justin Turner, don't hump all your friends on a dogpile.
I know. I know. This week was the high point of your life and you wanted to celebrate under a pile of men.
You can imagine how Lindsey Graham felt. Neuro, somebody needs to break into Jackson Oswald, the Memphis teen who achieve nuclear fusion in his bedroom at the age of 12, nobody gives a shit. This is America, not some nerd country that's just science you want to impress people, lose the lab coat and start shaking your ass on Tick-Tock.
They're also going to have to tell Miley Cyrus, who this week insisted she was once, quote, chased down by UFOs, but, quote, I'd also bought weed wax from a guy in a van in front of a taco shop. So it could have been the weed wax.
It was the weed wax.
There are people who download Easy TIV, the app that lets you donate money to your church, have to download another app called Hard Truth, which tells you 50 percent of your donation went to legal settlements for child molesting, 40 percent to pay for the lawyers, and the remaining 10 percent taking the kids out for ice cream.
Here are the makers of the new erectile dysfunction cream Roxon touted to work within just five minutes of rubbing it directly on your penis. I have to admit, that's pretty much true of any cream.
And oh, dick joke before the election. Come on.
And finally, new rule, no matter which side wins on Tuesday, let's skip the civil war and go right to reconciliation.
Thirty four percent of the voters think there will be another civil war in the next five years, and I'd like to remind them of one thing. America is a family and the definition of family is people who hate each other without resorting to violence.
We have to see each other not as mortal enemies, but rather merely as roommates from hell, if we want to simply exist, we're going to have to find a way to work together, like the Rolling Stones, a lot like the Rolling Stones, because we also need a comeback tour to pay the bills.
So let's not have a civil war with the trumpets.
We're no good at war and they're no good at being civil.
Like them or not, they're not going anywhere. Neither side is the only people who ever threatened to leave the country are rich celebrities and none of them ever do.
People keep sending me these maps showing how red states and blue states should just go our separate ways. We'll get New York. They'll get Texas. Shut the fuck up.
Take it from someone who has traveled this country my whole life, there are no red states or blue states, they're all like Mitch McConnell's and some shade of purple.
We can't have a second civil war because the two sides aren't neatly separated anymore. You see, the Mason-Dixon line up today would cut through states, cities, streets, even bedrooms.
We're amongst each other now, all swirled together and marveled in there are three point eight million Hillary voters in Texas and four point five million Trump voters in California. We can't go to war by dry cleaner is behind enemy lines.
I don't want to fight the battle of Trader Joe's. We have got to figure out ways to start working with each other again and the way we've always done that in the past is with a grand bargain. Mr. President, you must know this. You're the big deal maker, and I know you watch the show every week by accident.
You're like the guy in the emergency room who darn the luck keeps getting a zucchini stuck up his ass.
I don't know how it happened again, but here's a grand bargain that could work for everybody.
If liberals lose, we won't loot Footlocker. And if you lose, you don't loot the Treasury. That's that's how we get America back with a grand bargain on looting, because I'll admit our side has lately been having a little trouble saying looting is bad, like axios cheerily reported that looting can have positive effects because it generates cash for the looters.
Yes, stealing usually does. There's even a book called In Defense of Looting, the author says looting, quote, provides people with an imaginative sense of freedom and pleasure.
So does masturbating in a zoo meeting. But we don't recommend it. Have we lost our minds stealing bad? No looting the mall and also no Gucci for Republican looters ransacking the government because I know what.
I know what you're thinking, Don, you lose the election and everything must go right, lost the lease going out of business.
Oh, yes, you'll be selling pardons on Craigslist. Jared will turn the Smithsonian into condos.
You're going to try to strip this government like it's an abandoned Range Rover in a bad neighborhood as we speak.
They are trying to pull off one final giant swampy scam with the new five G, a deal one official said is perhaps the biggest handoff of economic power to a single entity in history after the Jeff Bezos divorce, of course.
Yeah, five g Trump's cronies are cutting themselves in, this is looting on a much grander scale than boosting the window display at Lululemon. And and they're doing it with the pandemic as well. In September, the stock price of Kodak surged because they were given a huge contract to make pandemic drugs with one small problem, Kodak. Does it make drugs? They make cameras.
In 1985, Kodak, who was the second highest bidder for this, the gap.
Stop stealing. Is this really such a hard thing for Americans to agree on? Can we agree on something, anything, because it's getting a little chippy out there? So please, whatever happens Tuesday, let's find a way to live together. We have to because no other country will take us.
All right, I want to thank my guest, John Heilemann, Liz Smith, David Sanger and Al Franken, and we will be back next week, we hope. All right, thank you, folks.
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