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Trump Administration
  Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  February 17, 2017 3:09pm-3:30pm PST

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>> certainly a concern. thank you very much. joining me now to talk more about the day's news is republican congressman ted yoho hoe of florida. he is a vocal supporter of trump's. i want to get your reaction to president trump. today he gives the speech. he was incredibly focused on jobs. he talked a little bit about his election succession which has become his m.o., and he talked about what republicans want him to talk about. but then he tweets, the fake news media, failing "new york times," it's not my enemy, but the enemy of the american people. what do you make him saying about that when he won't say that about russia and he's trying to it seems stay on topic about jobs? >> brianna, number one, thanks for having me on. >> of course.
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always. >> he has a certain style and people are getting used to that. and i'm glad to see him go back to the basics. when things get out of hand or the turmoil you were talking about, when you see that go back to the basics, creating jobs, making america great again, putting america first, the competitiveness of our country, raising the income for the middle class, those are the things that he's focusing on and that's what i see him doing. we had mike pence come in this week and also dr. price who is the new secretary for hhs, both of them said that mr. trump is very focused, he's very good at making decisions, he'll listen to stuff and he makes a decision and moves forward. >> why is he -- >> sorry about that. >> i know the earpiece gets whirly. what is it that he says the news media is the enemy when you have
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russia trying to effect a u.s. election. is russia the enemy or do you think the news media is the enemy? >> you're going to have to ask him. i think part of that -- >> i'm asking you. i'm not asking you what he thinks. i'm asking you what you think about that. >> well, i don't want anybody to be my enemy and as mark twain says don't take a fight with a man with an ink pen. >> i like that. >> i've learned that. so what we have to do is he's got his style. do i think russia is my enemy? no. am i cautious of russia, absolutely. and our goal is to make sure that we have strong foreign affairs relationships with all nations. we've got to have a reset on our foreign policy, and it's not just over the last eight years. i'm going to say over the last 20, 30 years our foreign policy is leading us in a direction that's, you know, created a lot of where we're at. and, of course, there is different players in the world than there was 20 or 30 years
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ago, but we need to reset our foreign policy, and we need to have strong alliances with all people around the nation. i was fortunate to become the chairman of the asia pacific committee. and we were sitting with people talking about realining our relationship, focusing on trade, economy and national security and i also sit on the western hemisphere and the chairman of that committee he's doing the same thing with our partners in the western hemisphere. >> to go back to this tweet. it's so puzzling. >> his style. >> he has a certain style, but he's -- i mean, he's using a phrase, the media is the enemy of the american people. i mean every president deals with the media. >> everybody does. and there's times they've been favorable to presidents and sometimes they're not. i think look at the stories, look at the facts and your job
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in the media or not just you but all media is report accurately. i could bring up examples in my own case where my own races where people, they took context and cut the whole context out and used a -- just a headline. you know, and this is something that misleads a lot of people because today so many people are reading the headlines or looking at a tweet and not reading the whole story and most time if you read the whole stair, you're going to get the rest of the story as paul harvey used to say. it's a different world and you've got a different executive and the world platform they're not used to seeing this. things will adjust. when i hear him talking like the other day about the direction of the country, getting the economy going, repealing and replacing obamacare, getting tax reform and growing our economy and changing our trade policies and look at those and renegotiate
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those so that they're fair and more equitable. and that's what i see him doing and he's very focused on that. i think he's right on track. >> he's also trying right now to find a national security adviser after firing michael flynn. >> true. >> this is such a coveted role. how concerned are you that vice ad mrl harward turned it down? a lot of people wanted him to be the national security adviser. >> without trying to inflame you or anybody else in the media, i heard the story that admiral flynn -- harward he turned this down because he wanted to pick his own cabinet, he didn't like the -- >> that's true. we reported that out. that's true. >> all right. but i also read stories -- >> he said that to i friend. >> he also said that he didn't want to take time away from his family and he was worried about his connections with some of of the military contractors.
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and he thought that played in. i don't know which one is -- >> he also said it was an ex-completive sandwich. this is what he said. >> welcome to politics. it's not a clean business and i'm glad i'm a large animal veterinarian that has dealt with a lot of stuff. >> i see how that prepares you. >> sorry about that. >> congressman, stay with me. >> we'll be back on. >> we'll have you back ever at the break. much more in just a moment. in about five minutes you get delicious, premium veggies, steamed to perfection. now! ♪ ahhhhhhhhhhh... mmmm heavenly, right? birds eye steamfresh. so veggie good.
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stay with us because we have a report that we want to show first, congressman. tonight even the russians are questioning whether the members of the trump administration are on the same page about members of the kremlin. michelle kosinski the president's message may havaed to the confusion. >> hi, brianna. with all the words what we finally got was a coherent message about what a russia policy could look like, but it did not come from the president. there have been so many mixed messages including from the president himself that the russians are ridiculing him. if this relationship seemed to be heading in the direction of a bro mans that time is not now. >> reporter: tonight this russian spy ship lurks off the american east coast. us u defense officials is telling cnn the kremlin is
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testing the us u.s. that's different than what interru interrupt. >> the fake and horrible reporting makes it much harder to make a deal with russia and probably putin said, you know, he's sitting behind the desk and he says i see what's going on in the united states, i follow it closely, it's going to be impossible for president trump to get along with russia because of the pressure he's got with this fake story. >> reporter: trump said he thinks he can work with vladimir putin. >> the thing i'm going to do is i can shoot this ship out of the water. people will say, oh, that's so great. that's not great. >> reporter: he didn't dismiss russia's provocation.
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>> the spy ship. >> not good. >> and a russian plane buzzed -- >> not good. >> reporter: statement, though, defense secretary james mattive meeting with nato counterparts is taking a defending line. >>er not in a position to collaborate and we will engage and try to find common ground and a way forward. russia's aggressions have violated law. >> reporter: rex tillerson isn't letting russia off the hook. >> the united states will consider working with russia where we do not see eye to eye. the united states will stand up for the interests and value of america and our allies. as we search for common ground we expect russia to honor the agreements it and work to deescalate the violence in the ukraine. >> reporter: russia would not
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comment on president trump's unexpected words and they had better things to do. a russian official had this to say. tillerson is playing a second carry. three lines from one administration. >> reporter: you heard the secretary of state there, he didn't say we would love to do a deal with russia. he said the u.s. would consider working with russia if certain conditions would be met. we've seen a harder line from both sides, a backing away. analysts wonder, is that simply reality intruding in the original optimism or is it because of the politics right now. russia says it's too early to tell what this relationship will be. they say they're still working on a day and time for president trump to meet in american with
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president putin. brianna. >> very interesting. michelle kosinski. ted yoho, you are a vociferous support of donald trump. you get briefings. there is a spy ship off the coast, 19 miles off norfolk and 30 miles from connecticut and you have the launching of a missile that violates a treaty. does it concern you that president trump, whom you support, is more willing to go after nordstrom and "saturday night live" than vladimir putin? >> no. it doesn't concern me. he's got a team in place that's going to negotiate with russia. i'm 61 years old and heck my whole life we haven't had a great relationship with russia. >> you're saying his team is responsible, he's not responsible for taking on vladimir putin when we're seeing what we're seeing?
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>> he is the quarterback. go back to the previous administration and go back to the conversation that barack obama had with med yef that said after the election i'll have more flexibility. what did that mean and look at russia going into crimea, and the united states didn't do anything about that. we did some light sanctions but america over the last 15 to 20 years -- >> we were talking about the president and vladimir putin. >> it builds on that. >> if we're going to use that analogy. isn't he more the coach and the one who is supposed to show the utmost leadership on this issue. >> i agree. i agree. his style is different, as we talked about. this is something that over the last 15 to 20 years, you've seen us back up on our foreign policy and we've -- there is a vacuum
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created. other countries are going in. that's why you saw russia going like this and china going into the sea. there is a new quarterback on the field and they will work this out. i have the utmost confidence in people like mr. tillerson that they're going to go ahead and they'll have strong foreign policies and the america's allies will know we're back and where we stand. >> donald trump is embracing vladimir putin, do you support that? >> i support creating a dialogue where you can talk. you know, i want a proponent of what president obama did with castro and cuba. >> so when he tweets on the day that the obama administration puts in place new sanctions, this is sortly before donald trump became president and putin says he's not going to retaliate. and he says great deal on delay by vladimir putin. i always knew he was very smart. look at that.
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he's calling vladimir putin very smart. but let's put up a graphic of the entities that he has taken on. just taken on recently arnold schwarzenegger, john mccain, blumenthal, judge robart, nordstrom, nbc, abc, mark cuban, "the washington post," cbs as well as the national security agency. so does that concern you that he is at one hand -- and we also have a graphic of someone just to make a point that he has not criticized. vladimir putin. he's not targeted him on twitter as he has these others. is that appropriate -- >> he hasn't? well, again, it's style. but look what he has -- >> how is that style? just explain to me, how is that style and not substance? >> because it's rhetoric. it's rhetoric. look what he has focused on. we've got $20 trillion in debt.
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a failed healthcare policy from the last administration, tax code needs to be fixed. >> i hear you on that, congressman. >> he's commented on that. i think that's a good thing. >> let's talk about relations with russia. if you want to say that is style and not substance because it's rhetoric, then how is it -- how is it when we're talking about russia, we're not talking about economic issues or domestic issues. why is that okay for him to do that and on -- explain to me how that is not substantive on russia? >> well, you'd have to ask president trump. i think it's his style. he likes to be combative. he likes to go out after that. but i have no doubt -- >> he's not being combative about vladimir putin. he's being complimentary to him. >> well, i thought that was a pretty good move on vladimir putin, not to retaliate, myself. i didn't tweet that out, i don't tweet. i don't think that is bad for him. it leaves an opening for the new
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administration coming in to start off on a better footing and go from there and build from there. we met with some ambassadors around the nation in the last two weeks and some of them we don't have the better relationship. my goal is to make better relationships and that's what he's going to do. i don't see him buddying up and having him up for thanksgiving dinner. if he did, that would be great, if we got to that point. we have to focus on national security, russia china and iran and syria. we've all got a common enemy in the world. let's partner up with the people that we can and work with the things that we can and air our differences and work to improve those. because fighting each other in today's -- with today's military capacity, this is not a good way for humanity and i feel confident that when we get through and we get into the end of the first quarter and second quarter, you'll see a
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well-moving foreign policy and things concentrating on getting our debt under control. >> i'm out of time. he says it's a well-oiled