tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg March 20, 2017 6:00pm-7:01pm EDT
♪ >> from our studios in new york city, this i"charlie rose." >> good evening evening, i'm john hockenberry filling in for charlie rose. we begin with a look at president trump's meeting with angela merkel. it was the first face-to-face meeting since trump took office. in the past, trump has been critical of her leadership. he said germany made a catastrophic mistake welcoming more than one million migrants and refugees in recent years. during today's summit, he expressed his strong support for nato but emphasized member nations must pay what they own to support the alliance. mark landler of the "new york
times" joins me now from washington. would you say this is a test of the relationship between merkel and trump? it seems when i look at the body language of angela merkel, that she from the beginning has not known what to make of this man. is there more clarity here? >> i think angela merkel is someone used to dealing with testosterone-style men. she has dealt with vladimir putin in russia, bruce ghani in italy, erdogan in turkey. now she is dealing with donald trump in the united states. the u.s. is such a major trading partner and ally of the u.s. that she has to figure out how to work with the new american president. i think that is what you saw today whenever she may make of him and it would be wonderful to know what her inside thoughts
are, she was going to make this relationship work. she came to washington to try to find common ground. i think the news conference they held together was an illustration of two people literally poles apart on crucial issues. but at least from her perspective, trying very hard to find a way to work together. john: i got the sense that she expressed, suddenly if you will -- subtly if you will, to donald trump that she will take care of this part of the relationship and he can take part of this relationship. she set out domains she thought germany would be better to handle and other aspects of the migrant crisis trump to deal with on his own and that would build into a kind of bifurcated relationship that might function very well. >> yeah, i think that is right. i think she made a point of saying she is the leader of germany and will look after german national interest.
she described a response to the migrant crisis that is obviously very different from what president trump is talking about, but one that she thinks is suited to german interests. likewise on trade, the other major bone of contention between the two of them. she said i am also here to lobby for an push german interests. she turned to him at one point and said a trade-in is only worth doing if both sides win. i think you are right. she is saying i will play my corner of the court and you play yours. and that way, we will be able to coexist and even work together. john: since before the end of the cold war, and merkel was a leader early on understanding how the forces work, demographics have been a warning sign in germany that the workforce needs to grow. it needs to grow somehow. the birth rate needs to rise. part of the impetus for migrants to come into germany is to add to the workforce.
it is not an argument donald with.has much context he does not think about immigration in those terms. is it possible merkel expressed to him, here is another way of looking at it, a lot of these nations need to think about bringing workers in because it is helpful for them for the reasons we want trade to work? >> people always say donald trump is surprisingly receptive to the arguments of people he meets. ist said, the united states blessed with very different demographics than germany or other western european countries. it has a younger population, more young people. that argument simply is not particularly applicable to the united states. we have other very valid reasons and historical reasons for being open to immigrants. replenishing the workforce and creating new, younger citizens
is not one of them. so i don't think that argument probably makes much of an influence on him. i wonder whether it is more on the trade side, where today the two talked about german companies and the role in apprenticing and training and workers. that might be an area where chancellor merkel can present donald trump ideas that will make an impact. and that is the subject they discussed after the news conference when they went back into the white house for lunch. john: what do you think the urgency is for angela merkel to figure out exactly what donald trump's relationship or intentions are with vladimir putin right now? >> angela merkel has always been the leader in the west who has kind of served as the bridge to vladimir putin. she understands him perhaps better than any other leader in the west. she certainly met him more perhaps than any other leader in
the west. i think it is vitally important for her to figure out what kind of relationship donald trump is seeking. that is not an easy question to answer in the current environment because while president trump came into office calling for a new kind of relationship and reset with russia, in recent days, and i think in part because of the continuing questions around the trump campaign's ties to the russians during the election, you have seen the administration stake out a more traditional position, making hayley the u.s. ambassador to the human saying we can never trust russia. where in a fluid moment you have a president who wanted to change the relationship but perhaps is finding out he has little room to maneuver to do that and may indeed and up with a relationship that is much closer to the one the obama administration had and what angela merkel would be comfortable with.
john: with chancellor merkel be in a position to say, look, bear down on this if you like, but this is not going to fly, these things, this never trust russia, and we have a problem in ukraine and we need to decide together how we are going to deal with it. that is a priority. >> i think probably what she will try to do is say i know vladimir putin better than anyone. i have been working this issue now for years. the whole minsk process, the diplomatic process to try to resolve the situation in ukraine is something the germans have spearheaded. the american administration said last week to reporters in advance of this meeting that donald trump would be interested and curious about tesla merkel --chancellor merkel's take on vladimir putin. he does not actually know vladimir putin at all. i think he will quiz her about how best to deal with the russian leader.
and perhaps, she could make an impact on him. he has a penchant for listening to people and taking their ideas to heart when they make a persuasive case. john: did you get any sense of the friendliness of them? it is so different to see how they address the reporters at a meeting like this. thought itnest, i was meticulously formal, very impersonal. there was no chemistry i could detect. but to be fair, chancellor merkel is a rainy intellectual. she is not a warm person. even president obama with whom she had arguably the best relationship president obama had with a foreign leader, there was not a lot of sentimentality of putting their arms around each other. she is not like that. you will remember the famous episode years ago when president bush put his hands on her
shoulders, and she short of -- sort of recoiled. she is a low-key, very intellectual person. i would not have expected to see a very emotional display. that said, these are two people who have very little in common and are pulls apart are many issues. that distance came through today in the news conference. john: no touchy-feely. what about the notions of nationalism building in europe and some evidence such nationalist sentiments are building in the united states? what would she want to say to donald trump about that? >> she has gotten a bit of good news on that front recently. the far right populist party in the netherlands did not do as well as some thought it would earlier in the week in the election. she has got her own far right party in germany that months ago many in germany were very worried about. but in recent months, there is
also evidence that party has declined in popularity. you are beginning to hear more about what they are calling a sort of trump backlash, that some of these far right populist movements in some european countries appear to be running out of steam. so i think she probably feels better about that issue than she might have last november in the wake of donald trump's election. john: mark landler, thank you so much. >> great to be here, john. ♪
ethan: good evening. i am ethan bronner filling in for trouble in prose -- charlie rose. it was once one of the richest countries in the world. govern for the past two decades by the socialist party and ravaged by corruption and inefficiency, it is now on the verge of collapse with spreading hunger, rent a crime, and triple digit inflation. will it get? is there a solution? and how should the trump administration react? joining me in new york is chris abatini, professor of what american studies -- latin american studies and a research fellow at the center for latin american studies. i am pleased to welcome them to
the program. chris, you're in the studio with me. i will start with you. speak about how it got so bad given all the wealth and talent venezuela was famous for at one time. >> it was a confluence of issues. in 1998 when huger chavez was elected, the two-party system that dominated venezuela from us 30 years had basically imploded. you had an outsider candidate, lieutenant colonel who had staged a coup earlier came to power promising to clean up the system. and he did in since he completely did away with the old system. in doing so, he doubled down on venezuela's oil wealth which is considerable. over the course of his patronage-driven, socialist-oriented economy, he basically consolidated the economy around oil. today, 96% of venezuela's will exports -- exports are based on
oil. that was fine when it was based -- $120 a barrel. today it is $40 a barrel and the country is hurting. ethan: there are questions of institutions being able to withstand the corruption that came in with this. the barriersown between the semi-state owned oil company and government and raided its coffers. it also means he did not invest in infrastructure. underminedupted and democratic institutions. the supreme court is firmly under his control. the electoral commission is under his control. it has been stripped of power. ethan: a little less than a year ago, you wrote in the "washington post" that venezuela is a powder keg. you said there is widespread social disorder triggering instability throughout the continent.
is that still true? has something shifted and why? >> great question. i think it is accurate to say in 2016, the biggest fear of those of us who follow venezuelan politics had was the possibility of the country exploding in terms of social unrest. there was in fact -- there were a number of episodes of instability on a citywide basis. however, the government hunkered down, deployed the armed forces to repress these protests as much as possible, and it managed to hold onto power. at the end of 2016 when the opposition managed to mobilize millions of the population on behalf of the recall referendum, the government blocked the effort which set the stage for what people thought was going to be a clash in the last couple of
months of 2016. but lo and behold, an international supported dialogue process began immediately. that cooled the street down and basically the escalated the situation in 2016 and it came to an end. describe the venezuelan population today is in a state of depression. they have moved through the stages of grief with regards to , to anger,referendum to bargaining. now i think we are in a situation of depression weather does not feel like there is a sense of possibility or hope about political change. that helps explain why at the beginning of 2017, it has been calmer on the streets of ethan: --venezuela despite the fact the country is expressing a depression marked by hyperinflation and severe shortages. dialogue you mentioned
that can't things down was promoted by the united states government under president obama. i think the dialogue has collapsed. i would be eager to hear from both of you whether you think the dialogue was the right policy. let's want to complement michael on what he said. it is a powder cake. he is absolutely right. it may seem depressed now. but what has happened is this desire to kill of the institutions and rules that could have mediated and provided something. you have a hyper polarized situation. 90% of families are food insecure. they are not getting enough. they do not have medicines coming in. people are waiting in long lines. there is a boiling cauldron of discontent. the government has postponed what would have been a constitutional or recall referendum and new elections for governor's.
the hope was there could be a dialogue. the problem was the united states and later the vatican intervened. also the union of south american multilateral organizations try to foster dialogue. but there were no rules to the dialogue. they were holding the government accountable for the basic rules and writes it was violating. there are over 100 political prisoners in ethan: --venezuela and they are not being released or on the table for discussion. ethan: let me go back to something you said. michael said a year ago it was a powder keg. now he says it is in a state of depression. you say it is a powder keg. it seems there's a difference between whether it is about to blow or it is depressed. could the streets explode? >> i think they could. the situation economically and socially has become so dire that people are basically scrounging
and garbage to get food. people are starting. poverty is at 80%. they are pursuing basic survival needs now. that does not mean there is not defeated discontent -- deep-seated discontent. should they begin to protest, i don't know where it will go. ethan: before we get to the dialogue, do you have the sense we spoke of moving from powder cake to depression, the impression you gave me is it is not about to explode. do you feel it is? did i misunderstand you? of myhink your analysis review of 2016 is correct. i think at this point, the venezuelan opposition leadership has a guide -- gigantic challenge in front of it to somehow get over the sins of demoralization that exists in the venezuelan population and
create a sense of belief again. ethan: that leads me to asking whether the dialogue approach was a problem. >> i think there needs to be some nuance thing in terms of how we understand the dialogue's negative effects in terms of taking away the opposition's main resource at that time in october and november which was street mobilization. the opposition accepted a request from the vatican to not lead a march that was going to culminate in a rally in downtown caracas. the vatican made that request because it seemed likely such a rally would result in violence. the opposition basically took a step back. one could argue it was a mistake to call off the march completely. but you could also understand why the vatican made that request.
the problem is the vatican was not able to deliver. at this point, they have somewhat disengaged from the process. and there is a real problem it is ain country, problem of firepower in venezuela. how do you create a new equilibrium in which the opposition can in some way match force with the government? it is going to be very difficult . the trump administration has used the kingpin authority to make a special designation about the vice president of the country, unappointed official, that he is a narco traffic or. that is significant because it governmentshould the look to make an internal transition, the current vice president would not be viable as a substitute because how would
you travel? --how would you travel? has been the first attempt by the trump administration to send a new message. it is quite clear dialogue has been put on hold for now. i think we need to think about talks as a multi-shot game. it is not just one and done. it is about creating new conditions for a future round. ethan: the future round, you think the organization for american states might be involved? >> currently, the secretary-general issued a very good report, a 75-page report condemning all of the different the past dialogue saying the government was not held accountable. as michael was saying, by engaging in those talks it stripped the opposition's ability to exercise its fundamental rights. i do not see the venezuelan government accepting the oas
because it has been very outspoken. the president has called the secretary-general trash. but is not a good way to initiate dialogue. it is not a one and done. this has to be a repetitive process. the issue is it has to be in a way -- done in a way that holds the government accountable. the government is betting it can hold the line until the next elections in 2018 and at that time hopefully when the price of oil will have gone up and they can engage in a new round of patronage. ethan: do you agree with michael this move to name the vice president a drug kingpin by the is an states government attempt by this administration to say something? obama did the same with the guy who became the interior justice minister as well. indu also have the feeling of the naming of this man as vice president was also a political
act by the president. >> this man is bad news. most: he is one of the thuggish individuals in power anywhere. >> crime spiked. good evidence he has been involved. was this a wise move to spur the dialogue? some people say no. may be by naming him it will send a message to others in the regime that if you do not start to get in line in the dollar process, you may lose your privileges to travel to the united states and the goodies. moving toy are not the united states quickly anyway. >> losing the privileges. it is a double-edged sword. it could cut either way. immediatement's reaction was thumbing its nose at the united states saying
tough luck. ethan: do you have the sense that president will allow an election when the electoral calendar turns up? >> i am not so sure. there was a recall referendum the opposition demanded. they kicked the can down the road. there were supposed to be local elections in december. they have postponed those indefinitely. ethan: do you think the obama administration's desire to improve its relationship with have aused it to shortsighted view of what to do in venezuela? >> i think the or two answers to the question. part of the issue of not applying sanctions was driven by the state department and career officers who wanted to pursue dialogue who had serious doubts about the opposition. it was not just an obama administration policy. the obama administration made
the calculation cuba was a lesser national security threat than venezuela. does that mean they trimmed their sails on being more aggressive on venezuela? that is possibly true. i do not think they were linked as directly as one might think. >> i generally agree with chris. i do not think there is much of the cost to sanctioning venezuela. as much a cost hitting the country that way. he does not support internationally. democrats in congress are no longer willing to listen. longer democrats are no willing to listen to the government claims. you have a bipartisan consensus about the importance of sanctions for standing up for universal human rights. i think although there was the close sequencing, the simmer 17 obama -- december 17 obama
announced normalization talks with cuba. the day after, he signed a bill from congress which ultimately resulted in the sanctions in 2015. there is a connection. the point is that venezuela for the moment is something where we are trying to rally the troops. but there still is not a consensus about what to do. no one is really talking about the real value of the most aggressive action, which would be sanctioning venezuela's oil exports. that would really hit the government where it hurts. but that seems unlikely because of the presented it would set. we are not talking about a crisis in u.s. vital national security interests. it is a difficult crisis to manage and we don't have many great options. thateal point is to argue
there are great costs for disengaging. we have made significant progress ratcheting up pressure. there still remains a great amount of work to figure out a solution to this highly complicated problem. ethan: that is a great way to end it. i want to thank both of our guests tonight. we will be back in a minute. ♪
i'm william cowan, filling in for charlie rose. his campaign was flailing last summer. steve bannonhired who worked at breitbart news, the media organization part owned by the mercer family and kellyanne conway. said to be hugely instrumental and responsible for several key people have, many asked just to is this 43-year-old woman? ,oining me now is vicki ward correspondent for the huffington post highline magazine he's been four months reporting on the piece about mercer that was published today. it is called the blow it all up billionaires. welcome, vicki world. this is a pleasure to have my at thisolleague here table as charlie rose would say. this is an incredible piece of journalism. can you tell us who are these
people? who are the mercer's? they suddenly appeared out of what seems like nowhere and we should know more about them. what is really unusual about them is an particularly rebecca , you know, has become the mouthpiece of a far more reclusive billionaire father, -- william: the hedge fund manager? guest: only made his billions later on in the 50's. so unlike most of the other mega-political donors, rebecca mercer is essentially a housewife without a big business of her own to run who is in a position to really then get involved in a detailed way in
the trump campaign, in the details. then, as we saw, on the trump transition team, we did not see any of the other trump donors sitting around pushing -- yes -- in that kind of way, but what is really different about the mercer's is not only did they lobby very hard to have their preferred candidates and people they knew very well to then work with him, they actually want you blowup the whole political system. they wanted to blow up the republican establishment and the vehicle through which they wanted to do that was this originally british data science , which has been renamed cambridge analytical. the reason that is important is
that the way the political system works is that all these science companies use in these political campaigns, in america, traditionally, are affiliated with either the republican party or the democrat. did,: what the mercer's particularly after mitt romney's loss in 2012 -- that was when rebekah mercer first got noticed. william: didn't they back some wacky congressman candidate? vicky: yes. yes, yes, yes. when it all starts with citizens united, that decision -- william: that is a very important point. there would be no mercer's without citizens united. piece, i fact, in the have one person, david, on the the wallho spoke to
street journal and was suspended from renaissance technologies. william: incredibly, for criticizing robert mercer. vicky: right. he said they are all slightly renaissance technologies. slightly wacky, anti-establishment people who all have crazy views. robert mercer really used to say quite publicly that, you know, that he believed that people who aren't very little money had very little value to society. william: he was critical of teachers in this regard? that is astounding to me. vicky: it is. william: simply because they do not make enough money. vicky: so he would say things like this, and inside the firm, but david said, we were all slightly crazy inside renaissance technologies. no one thought really, that this mattered. sort of, robert mercer was the person who preferred speaking to cats than to humans, so as long
as he spoke to his cats, all of this was fine, but when citizens united, when that decision gets passed, of course -- william: which allowed unlimited amount of money being spent for the little -- vicky: for individuals. william: it changed the whole political landscape. vicky: and the mercer's, their first test run was in oregon with this doctor, robinson, who was affiliated with this , and very proudly so, that collected files of vials of urine, but they saw that their money really had an effect, and that changed everything. from there, they invested in breitbart, which is of course, when they come across steve bannon, and steve bannon earn their trust. andrew breitbart dies, steve
think, tos a lot, i rectify the health of the financial health of breitbart and expand the platform. in theo, what i get into piece, which i found interesting, is that quite a few of the republican consultants i talked to mention that steve often appeared dressed like a homeless person -- william: he still kind of looks like it. vicky: he wears a suit and a tie, but, you know, the first glance you see of him is in his trump-pence, all disheveled, -- track pants, all disheveled. a very brilliant strategy in this very strange kind of rubik's cube like world of
uncomfortable codependency dependencies that make up the political world, because if you are a political consultant you want the donors you are so reliant on to just focus on your brain, to what is your strategy. you don't want to be looking at your cufflinks. or how you eat. that can make a huge difference. they can abandon you because of things like that. turning out looking like a homeless person may have worked extremely well for steve bannon. thatam: let us that that the little bit because i think renaissance technologies and jamie simons and robert mercer, this is a big hedge fund. jamie simons is usually the highest, one of the highest if year inhighest bid, and year out. robert mercer was his right hand guy and made a lot of money himself. has a few toys, right, big
yacht. they went out to fishers island, but rebekah mercer, his 43-year-old daughter -- vicky: the middle daughter. william: she has got this -- she not only worked at renaissance for a few years. i would like to know what she did theire. she also has a cookie -- did there. she also has a cookie company. this is a very complex woman that you seem to have captured very well in this piece i think. vicky: two or three years at renaissance. william: stanford degree in computer science and engineering. vicky: a not sure, i don't think, again, david was one of her bosses. it ended not so well.
time --ainly had by the citizens united came out. she had enough time on her hands. i know she does homeschool her four children, but she had enough time on her hands to go all in, and she would attend these freedom summits, the koch network, david boston. -- david bossie. william: there is a direct link between citizens united, steve bannon, the mercer's, trump. bossie was a person who introduced the mercer to donald trump. he did not know them very well, but over the years, that is how
he got to know steve bannon, kellyanne conway, and how he got another mercer's. they would all talk. mercer i think found ande summits frustrating she thought they were too soft and sheration and trade also thought that no one paid enough attention to her. william: is she an egomaniac? would even people who call themselves supporters and friends of hers call her a force. william: a force. is that a euphemism for something? vicky: i think she is clearly a very assertive personality. someone who would definitely
consider themselves a friend of hers, you know, she perhaps has , youq, which means that know, obviously, means she has low eq. she does not read of room well. what she is interested in is politics, her agenda, and getting it across. she first got herself really noticed after the mitt romney loss in 2012 when she stood up at the university club in new paraded the room for saying he had had a terrible candidacy and data operation, and sort of scolded them all and everyone was like, who is this woman? william: there is great detail in this story and i would like to talk about quickly. bannon, steve bannon being in charge of biosphere2. i don't know whether it was the scientific experiment in the desert. he changed the locks and they --
the scientists ended up breaking biosphere two because he locks them in. vicky: really the point of biosphere two is to show that steve bannon -- william: is a complicated die. vicky: he has a history. coming in andd at taking -- he was brought into biosphere two as a banker. andhe ended up running it, he has not appealed to very rich people. they end up trusting him. the billionaire who felt that this project was being completely mismanaged brought him in to fix it. that -- yes.
the other thing with steve bannon, there is always quite a lot of drama. the way that the old regime had to be sort of removed and he could take over, did involve armed federal marshals, so you know. william: a similar thing with, you know, with getting out, getting the mercer's and himself and kellyanne conway out of the trump campnto the after the paul manafort -- vicky: the thing that really the cruz campaign about steve bannon, and many of these people are obviously great and ial friends, was -- think they wanted to this day if he had not realized until the
spring of last year that ted because born in canada with bannon was supposedly the mercer's and they had all agreed that ted cruz would be the candidate, but suddenly, , 61tbart wrote, i think articles mentioning the fact that ted cruz was no longer electable because he was born in canada, and the cruz campaign and senator cruz called and said, called the mercer's, and said, "what is going on?" and rebeck of -- mercer said i have to be fair and impartial. clear that steve bannon had said to the mercer's, who had put a lot of pressure to ted cruz, that they felt ted cruz was not close enough to jeff sessions positions on trade
he had toation and move his policies closer to jeff sessions. they complained about a wall street journal op-ed he co-authored with paul ryan andng he was pro-free-trade they complained about that and then it was definitely a sort of whispering in their year on that then, when trump, during the primaries, came out with his saidm ban, rebekah mercer to ted cruz, she was giving the dressing downs after each debate, which i think the cruz campaign found difficult to follow because cruz was after all a debate champion at princeton. i believe. so, but she told him that his positions on immigration were
not needed to move closer to trump's and indeed to the base, so he came out with this policy a 90 dayb visas, period where h-1b visa holders, you know, -- andiam: so trump wins, everybody is a claiming that they had a roll and were responsible for his victory and on election night, she is hanging out with breitbart. great details. breitbart, in his office with a curtain, so no one can see. , in his office so no one can see what he is doing, but then she tries to get people she wants mtv administration. she is on the executive transition team and tries to get the people she wants in the administration and she gets mixed by and large. vicky: she wanted flynn. [laughter] william: ok, she got plan.
vicky: -- she got flynn. vicky: for it while, she wanted jeff sessions. she was that against mitt romney. william: ann romney -- and romney's daughter. vicky: she, yeah, she was furious when mitt romney's niece and ide head of the rnc, think another huge disappointment, she tried twice for john bolton, who had a relationship with the mercer's. they have donated to him. bolton's foreign-policy believe, not in line with donald trump, so it makes no sense that she -- and she is very, very, very vocal, but i think the thing
and ieally upset her, have seen in the piece where she goes to the memorial service on december 19, she really wanted -- this is the sort of, i think, whatworrying element of the mercer's were trying to do. she really wanted to control one outside group. what is called the outside group, that did this advocacy -- h,vocates the issues that, u gets the president's addenda out across the country. she did not just wanted to do that. someone than the piece said she got these people elected, she got -- william: she got been elected? vicky: she believes she wanted this group using cambridge analysts engine, she wanted to hold them accountable, so theoretically, theoretically,
let us say donald trump, you know, hypothetically wanted to invade granada. if she had got her way and her engine with their great database , could message the country to follow her agenda, you know, that power above the level -- william: thinking he is the mentoring candidate and she is hurian candidate and she is controlling it? vicky: that was the most terrifying part of this. the history, if you look at the mercer's history, shows if you go back to the candidates that they backed at the beginning when they were testing things, the end mattered to them more than the means, so this i think was the most sort of, troubling aspect of all of it. -- she got get
stopped. she got stopped because alexander has upset every single american who has come his way, in contact with him, and brad paschal, the very down-to-earth kansas born, you know, -- william: took over the whole digital strategy. vicky: yes, to the trump family, and to jared kushner, got sick and tired after the election, of theing from, you know, cambridge analysts pr machine, how it was all them, when in fact, he never used any of their psychographics. the decision of donald trump to go to the rust belt, wisconsin, actually, it started when brad pascal had the -- william: pennsylvania. vicky: it was a lightbulb moment
aen pascal thought, wait moment, what if we have much lower voter turnout then everyone has been expecting and he then asked two members of his team to run models based on voter turnout that was similar to the midterms, 2014, not as high as people had been thinking it would be, and that is when he saw the path. he mapped out a path, 305 electoral college votes, and was one vote off, and he then took bossie. to bannon, to william: most people have never even heard of him. when: he is like that, so he is in a meeting in trump tower during the transition team with, you know, you know, with otherh mercer and all the , kellyanne conway, all the
people in the room and she is pushing for this one organization. yes, and he -- said, very politely, no. this is not about mercer. this is about trump. for cambridge analysts, who had nothing to do with why we got here. , thatat caused, you know had caused a rift. we ended up with, i mean, i think rebekah mercer will have her own group but there are going to be three different outside groups, and it dilutes the power of each because donors will decide which group to go with. william: from the way you ended the piece, we have not heard the last of rebekah mercer. vicky: oh no. william: it sounded like steve bannon knows he is a short timer. that seemed to be news you are
breaking in this piece. is that true? someone very close to steve bannon phoned me this morning to tell me he has definitely told friends, you first,hat country comes and he likened himself to thomas cromwell, who, as we know, did end up the headed. beheaded. wearing see him on tv makeup. recently, we saw him at cpac without any makeup, so he looked worse. thisnk his priority is list on the wall he has of all the things, his agenda, for the first 100 days. he cares about that, to his the country. if he somehow implodes in the process, that is fine. country first. william: he seems to have
-- he'sed that his days only going to have a limited time on the stage. vicky: we do know that steve bannon is a student of history. people in his position, you know, -- william: have a half-life. but the mercer's, i think the whole fascinating thing that citizens united unleashed the mercer's, unleashed a a lot of powerfully wealthy people, but this election cycle, it seems like it unleased the mercer's on unleashed the mercer's on us. we have an understanding of who they are, how they worked throughout this campaign, first backing ted cruz and then switching over to donald trump. it is a really fascinating rendition of the behind-the-scenes power plays behind these very wealthy people, and clearly, rebekah mercer loses out and we have not heard the end of her. vicky: not at all.
>> on the record, the fbi director says there is no evidence to support president trump claims of wiretapping. presidency says four hikes this year, the other says, what is the rush? >> the process of leaving the european union. corruption.n of south korea's former leader faces prosecutors over the scandal that brought her down.