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tv   Wolf  CNN  January 27, 2017 10:00am-11:01am PST

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you on that, and she also has to talk, i think, and you would know this more than i would, nick, this notion that the president somehow says torture works and has opened the door for torture potentially, again, to be used. i know it has to go to congress, et cetera, but there is a big thing that folks over there would say, which is we will not share intelligence with you if the intelligence is gathered through the use of torture because that is against our law, and, you know, british intelligence has been very important to us over the years. >> nick, you just came to us from washington. both leaders have a strong interest in putting forward a very positive, friendly relationship. >> absolutely, they do. there's one thing here that we haven't talked about in the relationship so far, the sort of secret weapon that theresa may has. let's not forget president trump's mother was british. she came from scotland. there's that really strong connection there. we can certainly expect theresa
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may to sort of play up his natural warmth, if you will, to britain there. he talked about his mother loving the queen, the pomp and circumstance. you know, i think that sort of -- that tone may be in the conversation as well. this is a tough one for her. it's a difficult line to walk. i mean, she wants to do improved trade relations with the united states, but in which areas? agriculture is potentially one of those areas, but that alone for her could be contentious. do british farmers really want to import beef that's treated with hormones, these sorts of things? it's those technical details, technical specifications in trade deals that are hard to work out. she won't get into those details, but she will try to use any commonality she can. we heard her lay out britain's vision on parallel on track with the united states yesterday. she will be trying to use that and anything that commonality, that common heritage to persuade him of her views. >> we're going to be hearing a
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lot more over the next hour. on the u.s.-u.k. relationship. let's get to the u.s.-mexico relationship. it's in trouble right now. >> it's very much in trouble, and the issue is we need to find out more about today's news, this call. an hour-long conversation between president enrique pena nieto. a day after the big diplomatic dust-up. that means both leaders are trying to dial it back. will we get a new meeting scheduled? has president trump agreed? the mexican president said i can't do business with you if you are constantly berating my country and saying you will do something that i said i cannot do, pay for the wall. is there an agreement to dial back the language and have a meeting? that doesn't mean you erase the difficulties, but this is, again, to the point where whether it's prime minister may, whether it's president pena nieto. president trump doesn't speak nuance, the language of diplomacy. it's not the way he acts. a, he has some things to learn about how to operate in this space, but, b, we and the other leaders have a lot of things to learn about him as they develop
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these relationships. it will be fascinating to hear. the call lasted an hour. clearly, they were doing some business. >> that's a long call, would you not say? >> let me say, it's probably not as long as it sounds because it's through a translator, and so they have to wait for the translators to translate between spanish and english. >> except for the word wall, which i think -- >> the question really is do they come out of this saying we have agreed to meet on day x or we have agreed to meet in the near future. if they can say that, then they had a blow-up, and like in many relationships, you have a fight, and then you try to make peace or at least make detante, and we'll see how it goes forward. >> the principles are talking. you would generally assume that's a good thing because you wouldn't put the presidents on the phone if they weren't working something out. those are conventional rules. we don't know. this is donald trump after all. the thing that's striking to me about the relationship with prime minister may, you know, we've covered the white house. we look for the body language and all of the choreography of a day like today, but, you know,
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the european order has been disrupted. as you know, geopolitically, economically, all of that has been thrown up in the air, and donald trump represents a kind of economic nationalism that has both disrupted europe and has disrupted the united states. it's going to be interesting to see where they can come together on the prospect of a trade deal, how willing he is to listen to a more establishment european leader, a british leader saying, hey, mr. president, you know, put the brakes on this close relationship with vladimir putin and dial back the issue of torture. let's not forget, again, you know better. the brits are still going through the searing experience of iraq, and it is deeply embedded in their national -- in their political psyche, and it played out this summer. i was there visiting when the report came out about the intelligence. that's still very much a debate that they're having. >> the other problem, david, that the president has right now is making sure his republican
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supporters in the house and the senate are with him because many of them are feeling a bit uncomfortable at splf these issues. >> we followed throughout the campaign the divergence between trump and the republican party and where they came together, and i think we're going to continue to see that play out perhaps on issues like trade we'll see it diverge, and also constitutionally as he goes through all these executive actions and puts more and more power into the executive. is there going to be a concern institutionally from some legislators, but i want to pick up on what john said. when john said he doesn't speak the language of nuance, and he doesn't do diplo-speak, absolutely. he does speak the language of negotiation, though. that is the language he speaks, and that he grew up in. i do think that we are seeing with this kind of relationship, theresa may, or a deal getting done, we're seeing now a president who relishes deal making and has opened the door to these bilateral agreements
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instead of multi-lateral agreements, and that may be for theresa may. >> jeff, are we getting any more word on this phone conversation between the american president and the mexican president? >> we don't have any specific details about if any action was discussed or if any specific meeting is coming out of that, wolf. we are told that we will get more details shortly. perhaps even in this news conference here, which is coming up. just the fact of the phone calls, you all have been talking about, interestingly, it came after a tweet that the president sent out this morning and then they had that telephone call. i'm told it was an impromptu call. it wasn't planned at the beginning of the day. it's clear that at least on this side and probably in mexico as well, that they wanted to ease what really had been becoming an escalating stand-off here. they wanted to, you know, sort
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of get in front of that. i am told we will find out more details if there is a rescheduled meeting or if they come to some terms of agreement here at least on the broader outlines of things, but we know where both sides stand here, wolf. there is not a ton of room there in the middle for this. as we've heard, the mexican president pena nieto say they're not going to pay for the wall here. at this point a lot of the conversation must happen inside the republican party how that wall will be paid for up front. wolf. >> jeff zellany stand by. jeff is on the north lawn of the white house. our senior white house correspondent jim accosta is inside the east room of the white house where president trump and the british prime minister theresa may will be holding their joint news conference momentarily. earlier we showed some video of their meeting in the oval office. a little photo op that occurred there. set us -- set the scene for us right now. i assume they'll be making, jim,
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opening statements and then answering reporters' questions. >> some of the atmosphere is worth pointing out. the east room in the white house is just packed, as you might expect, for a first joint news conference for president trump. as you have been talking about throughout the morning, this president made a point of welcoming british prime minister theresa may in ways that you don't normally see presidents welcome foreign leaders at the white house. it does happen on occasion, but it is rare to have the president of the united states welcome a foreign leader at the portico entrance of the west wing. they then went right into the oval office and showed off the bust of winston churchill. president trump in this first visit with a major foreign leader is trying to really roll out the red carpet here, and, wolf, this east room is just absolutely packed. it took a lot longer than we're normally used to taking in terms of getting in here and getting in our places, but there are lots of questions to be asked here, and i i say that because typically these formats, wolf, there are two questions asked of the president, two questions
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asked of the other foreign leader for these joint news conferences, but as you know with donald trump, normalities go out the window, and so the question is if he is finished with the two plus two here as we call it and other questions are asked, does he indulge himself and indulge us and take more questions, and there are lots of questions, of course, to be asked about. you mentioned that call with jeff zellany about the phone conversation between enrique pena nieto and president trump that happened earlier this morning. what, of course, is the fall-out from yesterday's proposal that was trotted out and then walked back that there would be some sort of 20% import tax on mexican goods to help pay for the wall on the border. the white house later on in the afternoon said, as you know, talked that down and basically said it was just one of a menu of options in the words of reince priebus. there's also a phone conversation that's supposed to happen tomorrow between president trump and vladimir putin.
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there are already expectations that perhaps president trump is in the mood to lift sanctions that came about as a result of russia's invasion of ukraine and crimea. john mccain, the senator from arizona, earlier this morning put out a statement saying that that is not acceptable and that he will be introducing legislation to block that from occurring. we are putting those sanctions back on in place by virtue of law if the president goes down that road. lots of questions to be asked. also, the questions of the voter fraud that are unsubstantiated earlier this morning. he tweeted out that he wants to get results of an investigation, but he sited as a source someone who was quite questionable when it comes to the issue of voter fraud. lots of questions to be asked. we'll see how many he takes. >> you were speaking. we saw several of the president's top aides walk right behind you. >> right now they're waiting for the president and prime minister to walk in.
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we saw jennifer kushner and steven miller. we saw steven bannon and kellyanne conway walk right behind you. they are inside the east room. i want to bring in john king for a moment. we covered the white house. you were in the east room for a lot of these news conferences. it will be interesting to see how this new american president handles a formal news conference like this. normally with president obama, for example, there were two american reporters allowed to ask questions. they could be multi-part -- actually, they're coming up right now -- and two british questioners as well. here they are. >> thank you very much. >> i am honored to have prime minister theresa may here for our first official visit from a foreign leader. this is our first official visit. great honor.
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the special relationship between our two countries has been one of the great forces in history for justice and for peace and, by the way, my mother was born in scotland. today the united states renews our deep bond with britain, m l military, financial, cultural, and political. one of the great bonds. we pledge our lasting support to this most special relationship. together america and the united kingdom with a beacon for prosperity and the rule of law. that is why the united states respects the sovereignty of the british people and their right of self-determination. a free and independent britain is a blessing to the world. it's a relationship that has never been stronger.
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both america and britain understand that governments must be responsive to everyday working people, says that governments must represent their own citizens. madam prime minister, i look forward to working closely with you as we strengthen our mutual ties in commerce, business, and foreign affairs. great days lie ahead for our two peoples and our two countries. on behalf of our nation, i thank you for joining us here today as a really great honor. thank you very much. >> thank you very much, mr. president. can i start by saying that i'm so pleased that i have been able to be here today, and thank you for inviting me so soon after your inauguration. i'm delighted to be able to congratulate you on what was a stunning election victory. as you say, the invitation is an
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indication at the strength and importance of the special relationship that exists between our two countries. a relationship based on the bonds of history, of family, kinship, and common interests. in a further sign of the porn importance of that relationship, i have been able to convey her majesty, the queen's hope that the president and the first lady will pay a visit later this year, and i am glad that he has accepted that invitation. there is much on which we agree. the president has mentioned foreign policy. we are discussing how we can work even more closely together in order to take on and defeat diash and the idea ol of extreme islamists wherever it's found. we are already leading efforts to face up to this challenge, and we're making progress with them losing territory and fighters. we're discussing how we can do this by deepening intelligence
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and security cooperation and critically by stepping up our efforts to counter them in cyberspace. we know we will not eradicate this threat until we defeat the ideology that lies behind it. our talks later i'm sure we'll discuss other topics. on defense and security cooperation, we are -- as the bullwork of our collective defense, and today we've reaffirmed our unshakeable commitment to this alliance. mr. president, i think you confirmed that you were 100% behind nato, but we're also discussing the importance of nato continuing to insure it is as equipped to fight terrorism and cyber warfare as it is to fight more conventional forms of war. i've agreed to continue my efforts to encourage my fellow european leaders to deliver on their commitments to spend 2% of their gdp on defense so is that the burden is more fairly shared.
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finally, the president and i have mentioned future economic cooperation and trade. trade between our two countries is already worth over 150 billion pounds a year. the u.s. is the single biggest source of investment with the u.k., and together we have around $1 trillion invested in each other's economies. the u.k.-u.s. defense relationship is the broadest, deepest, and most advanced of any two countries sharing military hardware and expertise. we want to build on this relationship in order to grow our respective economies, provide the high skilled, high paid jobs of the future for working people across america and across the u.k. we are discussing how we can establish trade negotiation agreement, take forward immediate high level talks, lay the ground work for a u.k.-u.s. trade agreement, and the practical steps we can take now to in order to enable companies in both countries to trade and do business with one another
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more easily. i'm convinced that a trade deal between the u.s. and the u.k. is in the national interest of both countries and will cement the crucial relationship that exists between us, particularly as the u.k. leaves the european union and reaches out to the world. today's talks i think are a significant moment for president trump and i to build our relationship, and i look forward to continuing to work with you as we deliver on the promises of freedom and prosperity for all the people of our respective countries. thank you. >> very nicely stated. steve holland. steve. >> how close are you to lifting sanctions imposed on russia over its ukraine incursion? what would you expect in return? and prime minister may, would you see a change in british
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attitudes towards sanctions on russia? >> we'll see what happens as far as the sanctions. very early we'll be talking about that. we look to have a great relationship with all countries ideally. that won't necessarily happen, unfortunately. it probably won't happen with many countries, but if he with can have, as we do with prime minister may and the relationship that we've all developed and even in the short relationship that we've just developed just by being with each other and have lunch and we've really had some very interesting talks and very productive talks. if we could have a great relationship with russia and with china and with all countries, i'm all for that. that would be a tremendous asset. no guarantees, but if we can, that would be a positive, not a negative. okay? >> we have -- as far as the u.k. is concerned on sanctions for russia in relation to their activities in the ukraine, we have been very clear that we want to see the minsk agreement
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fully implemented. we believe the sanctions should continue until we see that minsk agreement fully implemented, and we've been continuing to argue that inside the european union. laura. >> thank you very much, prime minister. bbc news. prime minister, you've talked about where you agree, but you have also said you would be frank where you disagree with the president. can you tell us where in your talks you did disagree, and do you think that the president listened to what you had to say? mr. president, you said -- we'll see what she says. mr. president, you said before that torture works. you have praised russia. you said you wanted to ban some muslims from coming to america. you've suggested there should be punishment for abortion. for many people in britain, those sound like alarming believes. what do you say to our viewers at home who are worried about some of your views and worried
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about you becoming the leader of the free world? >> this was your choice of a question? there goes that relationship. >> on the issue that you raised with me, laura, can i confirm that the president -- i've been listening to the president, and the president has been listening to me. that's the point of having a conversation and a dialogue. we have been discussing a number of topics. we'll carry on after this press conference meeting and discussing a number of other topics. there will be times when we disagree and issues on which we disagree. the point of the special relationship is that we are able to have that open and frank discussion, so that we are able to make that clear when it happens. i'm clear also that there are many issues on which the united kingdom and the united states stand along side one another. many issues on which we agree, and i think as i said yesterday in my speech, that we are at a moment now when we can build an even stronger special
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relationship which will be in the interest not just of the u.k. and the united states, but actually in the interest of the wider world as well. >> we have a great general who has just been appointed secretary of defense. general james mattis. and he has stated publically that he does not necessarily believe in torture or waterboarding or however you want to define it, enhanced interrogation i guess would be a word that a lot of -- words that a lot of people would like to use. i don't necessarily agree, but i would tell you that he will override because i'm giving him that power. he is an expert. he is highly respected. he is the general's general. got through the senate very, very quickly, which in this country is not easy. i will tell you. so i'm going to rely on him. i happen to feel that it does
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work. i've been open about that for a long period of time. i am going with our leaders, and we're going to win with or without, but i do disagree. as far as, again, putin and russia, i don't say good, bad, or indifferent. i don't know the gentleman. i hope we have a fantastic relationship. that's possible, and it's also possible that we won't. we will see what happens. i will be representing the american people very, very strongly, very forcefully, and if we have a great relationship with russia and other countries and if we go after isis together, which has to be stopped. that's an evil that has to be stopped. i will consider that a good thing, not a bad thing. how the relationship works out, i won't be able to tell you that later. i have had many times where i thought i would get along with people, and i don't like them at all. i've had some where i didn't
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think i was going to have much of a relationship, and it turned out to be a great relationship. theresa, we never know about those things, do we? i will tell you one thing. i'll be representing the american people very strongly. thank you. how about john roberts, fox. >> mr. president, thank you so much. madam prime minister. it's my understanding, mr. president, that you had an hour-long phone call this morning with president enrique pena nieto of mexico. could we get an update on where the relationship is? further to that, what do you say to your critics who claim that you have already soured a relationship with a very important u.s. ally? madam prime minister, if i may ask you as well, are you concerned about the state of relations between the united states and mexico? sir. >> well, i think the prime minister, first of all, has other things that she's much more worried about than mexico
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and the united states' relationship, but i will say that we had a very good call. i have been very strong on mexico. i have great respect for mexico. i love the mexican people. i work with the mexican people all the time. great relationships. as you know, mexico with the united states has out-negotiated us and beat us to a pulp through our past leaders. they've made us look foolish. we have a trade deficit of $60 billion with mexico. on top of that, the border is soft and weak, and drugs are pouring in. i'm not going to let that happen. general kelly is going to do a fantastic job at homeland security, as you know, where we swore him in yesterday. we have a really -- i think a very good relationship. the president and i. we had a talk that lasted for about an hour this morning. we are going to be working on a fair relationship and a new
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relationship, but the united states cannot continue to lose vast amounts of business, vast amounts of companies, and millions and millions of people losing their jobs. that won't happen with me. we're no longer going to be the country that doesn't know what it's doing. so we are going to renegotiate our trade deals, and we are going to renegotiate other aspects of our relationship with mexico, and in the end i think it will be good for both countries, but it was a very, very friendly call. i think you'll hear that from the president, and i think you'll hear that from the people of mexico that really represent him and represent him very well, and i look forward to over the coming months we'll be negotiating, and we'll see what happens. i'm representing the people of the united states, and i'm going to represent them as somebody should represent them. not how they've been represented
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in the past where we lose to every single country. >> as the president himself has said, the relationship with united states, with mexico, is a matter for the united states and mexico. tom. >> you said you would help us with a brexit trade deal. you said you would help us with a brexit trade deal. you said you would stand by us with nato, but how can a british prime minister believe you, because you have been known in the past to change your position on things. also, a question to both of you. people are fascinated to know how you're getting on with each other. the hard-working daughter of a vicker. the brash tv extrovert. have you found anything in common yet? >> not as brash as you might think. i can tell i think we're going to get along very well. it's interesting because i am a people person. i think you are also, theresa, and i can often tell how i get along with somebody very early, and i believe we're going to
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have a fantastic relationship. brexit -- i really don't change my position very much. if you go back and you look, my position on trade has been solid for many, many years. since i was a very young person talking about how we were getting ripped off by the rest of the world. i never knew i would be in this position where we can actually do something about it, but we will be talking to your folks about brexit. brexit was an example of what was to come, and i happened to be in scotland at turnbury cutting a ribbon when brexit happened, and we had a vast amount of press there, and i said brexit -- thfis was the da before. i said brexit is going to happen, and i was scorned in the press for making that prediction. i was scorned.
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lo and behold, the following day it happened. the odds weren't looking good for me when i made that statement because, as you know, everybody thought it was not going to happen. i think brexit is going to be a wonderful thing for your country. i think when it irons out, you're going to have your own identity, and you are going to have the people that you want in your country, and you're going to be able to make free trade deals without having somebody watching you and what you are doing. i had a very bad experience. i have -- i had something bh i was in my other world. i have something in another country and getting the approvals from europe was very, very tough. getting the approvals from the country was fast, easy, and efficient. getting the approvals from the big group -- i call them the consortium was very, very tough. i think brexit will go down as being a fantastic thing for the united kingdom. i think in the end it will be a
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tremendous asset, not a tremendous liability. >> i'm just on the question you asked me, tom. i mean, i think as the president himself has said, i think we have already struck up a good relationship, but you asked what we had in common. i think if you look at the approach that we're both taking, i mean, one of the things we have in common is that we want to put the interests of ordinary working people right up there center stage. those people who -- you know, they're working all the hours. they're doing their best for their families, and sometimes they just feel the odds are stacked against them. it's that interest in insuring that what we do, that the economies -- our economies and governments work for ordinary working people, work for everyone in our countries. i think we both share that. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. >> all right. there they are. there they are. the president of the united states, the prime minister of the united kingdom having about
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a 20 minute news conference. lots of news unfolding during the course of these 20 minutes on mexico, the president releasing details of his nearly one hour phone conversation with the president of mexico pena nieto. weigh also heard the president wants to have i fantastic relationship. he is going to have a conversation with president putin tomorrow. he says let's see what happens on sanctions, although theresa may, the british prime minister, insisted no relief in sanctions until the russians accept the so-called minsk accord, which should have prevented the russians from moving into ukraine, taking over crimea. the issue of enhanced interrogation, the president said he believes in all of that. he is going to defer, though, to his defense secretary general mattis. let him handle that even though he thinks that torture actually
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does work. we did hear theresa may say he promised him that he will offer 100% support for the nato alliance even though in recent weeks the president has said nato may be obsolete. let's bring in our panel for some analysis, and gloria, let's start with you. >> let's start with nato. what was astonishing to me is she turned to the president and said i think you confirmed you are 100% behind nato. just to get that on the -- >> she needed that back home. >> just to get that out there. that was one thing done off her checklist. the president did not disagree with that at all. he seemed to be looking at her quiz quizically as she said it, but generally told we heard a different tone, i think. >> a little? >> from donald. a lot of a different tone from donald trump. particularly on the phone call with russia. we were talking about early today that john mccain sent out an kbreshl statement saying that
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when donald trump gets on the phone with vladimir putin, he should remember the man on the other end of the line is a murderer and a thug who seeks to undermine american national security interests, and today the president said, well, i don't know if imauto going 'm g him. sometimes i think i'm going to like people and then i don't like people, and it work the other way around. he seemed to actually just give a little bit of an opening there on the question of his relationship with putin while not getting specific at all about sanctions. >> i want to go over to our senior white house correspondent jim accosta. is he in the east room at the white house. jim, you were there. you saw the body language up close. you saw the aides who were all there. the british aides. the white house officials. what was your bottom line analysis based on what we heard? >> wolf, that is one of the shortest news conferences i have ever seen in the east room of the white house. we clocked it around 18 minutes. that is extraordinary in its
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brevity. as you saw the president there explain just a few moments ago, he is open to lifting sanctions on russia. he did say it's early on in the process. he did not close the door on that despite the fact that the british prime minister standing right next to him said she believes that the sanctions on russia because of the russian invasion of ukraine and annexing of crimea should continue. that's an interesting conversation that president trump will have. we'll look for that read-out from both countries to see what was talked about. i definitely think there was some news there, and, of course, what you and gloria were just talking about, what the president is saying, and it's extraordinary to hear these words uttered in the white house that a president of the united states believes that torture works. he agrees with torture. we heard that out on the campaign trail all the time, and those are one of those omg moments from donald trump when he was a presidential candidate, but to hear the president of the united states say that he believes torture works, i think, is something that is going to
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send shock waves around the world. despite the fact that she did say she is going to defer to his defense secretary, retired general mattis in his view that it should not work and it should not be used. as for that relationship between the u.s. and mexico, i thought it was quite striking that president trump did not really give any ground. he did not give any ground when comes to building a wall on the border. he didn't lay out any specifics when it comes to paying for it. we heard that confusion yesterday as to who is going to pay for the wall. when a news conference in the white house -- a joint news conference is 18 minutes, he is certainly the un-obama, the anti--obama. president obama would have taken each of those questions and gone for a very long time. we would have gotten paragraphs, not sentences, as we heard from this president today, wolf. >> he has a lot of more activity coming up later today. the president of the united states. jim, i'm going to get back to you in a moment, but, john, on the issue of mexico, we did hear
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the president describe that one-hour phone conversation with the president of mexico pena nieto. he said it was a very good call. we have a very good relationship. he was very respectful. he is showing great respect. then he began to unload on all the awful things happening from mexico into the united states. the awful trade deals, the drugs, the people pouring in. he was pretty blunt on that. >> he was blunt, but he was calm. he was quiet. his language was not confrontational. this was a very different donald trump we saw from beginning to end. in his opening statement, he didn't say anything except welcome to the white house. we talked about isis and this and that. he said nothing. i'm glad to have you here, and it was the prime minister who put the meat on the bones about what he this talked about. then donald trump was something he almost never is. careful. in every one of his answers, he was satisfyiying very careful t speebing calmly making clear he is not going to back down in his grievances with mexico. he believes what he believes about the trade issue, but very friendly.
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i like the president. i like the mexican people. i want this to work. the tone very important coming out of a dust-up. donald trump normally just look at his twitter feed, escalates fights. if you get if his face, he escalates. in this case that was clearly trying to say i'm not backing down. i have serious issues here, but trying to de-escalate the volume. very, very interesting. interesting words in every one of these negotiations i put the american people first whether he is talking about vladimir putin or talking to the mexican president. if you are watching around the world and you are looking for this brash, and he said i'm not so brash, confrontational, stir it up outside of the box, disruptive donald trump, that's not what you saw right there. >> can i just say to john's point, i think the president deserves some credit here. critics have been on him every day for a rocky start to his presidency. he is not a politician. he has not been part of the convention at all in diplomacy or the language or the choreography of the presidency. to john's point, he was careful. he was measured and spoke about
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representing america. the fact that he put some distance with russia and injected these cautionary notes, i think, is really significant and is a sign despite as much pushback as we've seen in the media and in other quarters from the trump white house that they want to find their footing. they want to try to prioritize what some of their goals are. i'm sure they're getting a lot of counsel quietly about how to modulate or calibrate how disruptive he is going to be here and around the world. >> also because the two british questioners asked some pretty forceful questions. one saying how could the british people believe you because you change your positions on all these issues, but he didn't go after them. he was very calm in responding. >> imagine if that same question was asked by an american reporter in trump tower two weeks ago. the response would have been completely different. i think for a president who spent the first week trying to break every convention possible,
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be totally unconventional, he actually was quite conventional today. he understood, it seemed -- he was sort of wearing the trappings of the east room, the moment of being on stage with a foreign leader. the understanding of the impact of his words. all of that was very present in donald trump today in a way it has not been i think for the most of the last seven days. >> abby phillip, one of our cnn contributeors, our analyst in as well. abby, what was your reaction to what we just saw nearly a 20 minute news conference? >> very similarly surprised to see trump really moderating his tone and dealing with this in a way that we've never really seen before. i think it's instructive that theresa may did something that we now know that she was advised to do from president obama, which is get in there really early. get in his ear very early. it seems like that strategy has already paid dividends. you see trump reacting to her
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and working with her in a different way, and she is influencing him as a world leader. the very first one that he has really had to engage with person to person about how he approaches these situations in terms of tone. you know, i'm a little surprised to see that he has declared pretty definitively that he seated the decision about torture to james mattis. i think that will be a little bit of a relief to a lot of people who are watching, but you don't often see trump kind of putting decision making on someone else's table, and that's essentially what he did today. he didn't back down on saying that he thinks torture works, so by saying that james mattis going to make the decision, that's a pretty big deal, and i think that's going to be reassuring to a lot of people in the intelligence world and in the defense world going forward. >> stapd by. we're getting some breaking news. we're getting a statement in from the government of mexico on the nearly one-hour phone conversation that president
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trump had with president pena nieto. it's an interesting statement. i want to get reaction from our reporters and analysts here. it was described by the mexican government as a constructive and productive conversation about the bilateral relationship between the two countries on a whole range of issues, but listen to this. this is from the statement from the mexican government. with regard to the payment of the border wall, both presidents acknowledge their clear and very public differences in position on this sensitive issue and agreed to resolve these differences as part of a comprehensive discussion of all aspects of the bilateral relationship. the presidents also agreed at this point not to speak publically about this controversial issue. that's a pretty stark statement. >> i don't mean this as flippant as it's about to sound, but you could put up a countdown clock as to when donald trump will talk about the wall, or to the point we just saw, or is he ready as president of the united states to step back some, to step back some?
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there is a way out here. remember, during the campaign the president as a candidate said he was going to rip up nafta. then in the transition he said he wanted to renegotiate and modernize nafta. if you can renegotiate with mexico and with canada a joint agreement in which the president can make the case the united states is getting a better economic deal, that pays for the wall. >> what if he gets all of this after pushing pena niet on the wall. what if he gets a better deal on nafta and some payment on the wall, in the end this disruptive approach may bare fruit. >> this is what he takes about in the book "the art of the deal." go deep, scare everybody, and then be the first to go back. >> don't you think the president will have to talk about this because the congress has to talk about it in some way, shape, or form. if you are going to slap some kind of a tariff on imports, you know, that's got to be part of a larger congressional discussion. to your point, this is the way trump operates. you know, in reporting about donald trump over the last year,
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i was talking to a lot of people who have done business with him, and they said, what he does very often is he -- this is from somebody who worked for him. he would go into a board meeting, throw a grenade into the board meeting, upset the board meeting, walk out, and then say you guys figure this out. then come back in at a certain point. i think in a way that's what he has done with mexico. >> not how they teach at the school of foreign service. we'll see if that works. >> i doubt they do it -- >> let's move on to the last -- this mexican government statement. the presidents also agreed at this point not to speak publically about this controversial issue. the wall -- >> did he say tweet? did he say tweet? >> let's see how long that lasts. christiano amanpour is with us as well. christiane we did hear the prime minister say very flatly that she got a firm statement from the president during their private meeting in the oval office of 100% u.s. support for nato. this follows several statements by the president when he was a
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candidate and earlier that nato may be obsolete right now because so many of the nato allies are unwilling to pay what they should be paying for that defense expenditure and deploying troops when necessary. you heard her say that. >> sitting overseas and knowing what all the overseas leaders were expecting in this press conference, you can imagine that a lot of what they've heard today -- this was a very different donald trump. many people had been waiting for see whether there would be a may affect so to speak. the first foreign leader to meet him, a woman nonetheless, and on these very important issues. of course, she was going with a lot in hand. she want thad trade deal which she promised. on nato it's very significant what was said. he is 100% committed to it. theresa may says they are going to talk about, you know, upping nato's game when it comes to fighting terrorism and cyber
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warfare as well. remember, 2% of gdp is not a treaty obligation. it is aspirational by nato countries and only a handful of them pay it, and, yes, many people believe they should be paying much more, and that is what they are going to try to put out there as well. also, of course, the torture comments will go down much here. people are very concerned. they won't be able to do business on military, intelligence, and other things. if the u.s. is ek braing the law -- breaking its own law on torture. handing that over to jim mattis was a very interesting development, as you've just said. then again, you know, i've been talking to -- yeah. about the whole mexico deal as well. >> finish your thought. go ahead. >> i was just talking to the former u.s. commerce secretary under george w. bush. you know, this mexico issue was a huge massive blow-up, and it's very interesting how both sides have now stepped back from that brink and agreed to talk about it in a big over-arching future discussion and carlos gutierrez
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has said it has to come with immigration talks as well because america actually needs, he said, something like 600,000 to a million farm workers, unskilled people, to come and "pick lettuce." what americans are going to want to pick lettuce? there are huge issues ahead. he said it's not right to say that the u.s. has been stiffed by mexico and nafta. this is millions and billions of dollars investment that helped all three economies. it's very delicate this whole issue here. >> yeah. that's an important point as well. nick roberts, i want to play a clip. president trump was asked about this notion that the u.s. might ease sanctions on russia, and as you know, the president is having a phone conversation tomorrow, his first, with president putin. listen to what president trump said. >> as far as the sanctions, very early to be talking about that, but we look to have a great relationship with all countries ideally. that won't necessarily happen,
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unfortunately. probably won't happen with many countries, but if we can have, as we do with prime minister may and the relationship that we've all developed and even in the short relationship that we've just developed just by being with each other and had lunch and we've really had some very interesting talks and very productive talks, but if we can have a great relationship with russia and with china and with all countries, i'm all for that. that would be a tremendous asset. >> and you heard from the prime minister say she doesn't want to lift any sanctions until the russians agree to abide by the minsk agreements, the minsk accords that prevent russia from doing what it did moving into ukraine and annexing crimea. >> she said they would be discussing the issue of russia through lunch. one can only imagine had they discussed it prior would she have stood there and said, actually, president trump, you do agree with me 100% that doing a deal with vladimir putin is the wrong thing to do.
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to me -- it's hugely complicated. you get into the whole issue of regional allies, the sunni-shia split between the middle east at the moment. it would be very difficult for him to support president putin, to tackle isis, and align himself effectively with president assad in syria and iran. hugely difficult path to go down. perhaps over lunch he will hear more on her thoughts on in a, but that minsk agreement, getting that enforced, she said it in parliament a couple of days ago. absolute red line. britain cannot support changing the relationship, lifting sanctions with russia until they meet the terms of that. this includes handing back the control of the borders of ukraine to ukraine. russians controlling the border -- >> let me play the clip. this is the prime minister, theresa may, speaking about nato in her opening statement. listen to this. >> on defense and security cooperation we are united in our recognition of nato as the
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bullwork of our collective defense, and today we've reaffirmed our unshakeable commitment to this alliance. mr. president, i think you said you confirm that you are 100% behind nato, but we're also discussing the importance of nato continuing to insure it is as equipped to fight terrorism and cyber warfare as it is to fight more conventional forms of war. >> gloria, this is an important statement from the prime minister. >> right. it was the statement she intended to get when she came here, and she got it. again, this is another way where donald trump was saying he was deferring to general mattis. well, general mattis in his confirmation hearings as we all know because we listened to it, was that, you know, he said he was behind nato 100% and more and called it the greatest treaty, you know, et cetera, et cetera. i think this is another way where you see the president stepping back and deferring to somebody like general mattis. >> i wonder if there's a reason
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he did that. prime minister may may have needed to make that statement for domestic consumption and for european consumption, but it also gives president trump some room. i mean, if he really feels that way, why not come out and say it in a stallworth way. >> he might. >> he didn't there. i thought that was striking. he said that nato was not valuable because it didn't do its job on terrorism, and, yet, nato, of course, committed troops to afghanistan. that simply wasn't correct. on russia what i think is interesting is what leverage the president now thinks he has. if putin wants those sanctions lifted, maybe trump is going to think twice about overturning them so quickly unless he gets something that's real, say, in syria. will he use it as leverage against bashir assad? these things are going to be interesting to see what the initial steps are. if there is goodwill, like saturday night live likes to parody, how will trump use that, as he says, for america's benefit? >> i want to go back to
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christiane. we did significantly get a statement yesterday from the new american defense secretary, general mattis. he had a phone conversation with his german counterpart, the german defense minister, and in that statement that the unshakable u.s. support for the nato alliance, so he did get that from the defense secretary. but give us your analysis of what we just heard. >> the bottom line is that nato has been the single most successful modern science in history. it has allowed america to protect its strength not just protecting a bunch of no good european countries as it's described by the united states, and therefore economic prosperity and all the other stuff that goes with it so the idea that somehow it is going to
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be blown up and that it's obsolete obviously nobody overseas that it was credible, so the fact that teresa may say it is an alliance, it is a very big deal. the president of france and chancellor of germany, and talk tomorrow by phone have said listen there are challenges from this new administration when it comes to facing our joint problems and conflicts and bolstering this world order that the u.s. has led over 70 years so it's a big big moment right now and i think if teresa may can translate the fierears of t western europe and foreign -- and identify putin's russia and threat to the united states right now, isis is a major
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threat but not a an existential threat that is something they hope president trump will take on board and act accordingly even though it's in everybody's interest to have a better relationship with russia but not at any cost and not on putin's terms, so that's what everybody is waiting to see how that pans out. >> week one has just been completed for this new american president. stand by coming up as president trump met with the british prime minister, spoke to large crowds gathered at the march for life event. his comments on the new administrations policies, the supreme court pick, that and more when we come back.
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anti-abortion demonstrators are gathering in washington for the annual march for life. the movement is getting major support from the white house, just a little while ago the vice president mike pence addressed the crowd. >> i would like to say over there at 1,600 pennsylvania avenue we're in the promise keeping business, we will work with congress to end tax payer funding abortion and abortion providers and will devote those resources for health care services for women across america. >> our congressional correspondent is with us, sun land is this the first time a sitting vice president has spoken at the march.
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what does this mean for the movement and those marching today? >> reporter: wolf, when you talk to the anti-abortion activists they feel encouraged by the new administration so far and encouraged that they point blank will have a much larger platform for their opinions here. they were very happy with vice president pence coming down to address them today and also in addition getting kellyanne conway out there one of donald trump's top advisors and believes this gives them a boost of momentum because many believe they are on the cusp of getting legislation passed perhaps as early as next week. >> the up coming new executive orderers right after a quick break.
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hi there i'm brooke baldwin you're watching cnn thank you for being with me this friday, we begin with a stream of major headlines as donald trump ends the week number one on the job, he just finished his first joint news conference with british prime minister teresa may, and the first question was about vladimir putin and whether they would lift the sanctions, here is the president. >> we'll see what happens, as far as sanctions it's very early to be talking about that but we look to have a