tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN March 21, 2017 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT
presidential fact and fiction. wiretapping. vladimir putin, size of the crowd at inauguration. president trump seems to be operating from his own set of facts. but will that thinking that made him business succession and won him the white house undermine the president's faith in the presidency? and ivanka trump moving into the west wing. raise red flags? get to my guests. kevin madden and andre bauer. good evening to all of you. kevin. start with you. white house not backing down from the wiretapping claims even he though the fbi director told the american people, no evidence. listen to this from today's
briefing. >> administration and president have repeatedly soefrd the next few weeks present evidence he was wiretapped. last week he said coming this week and will speak on it. will he this week present evidence he was wiretapped by barack obama or will he speak about it? didn't speak with it at the rally. >> we'll see how the week goes. >> will the white house finally say there is no information. solved matter but he says coming in the next few weeks. have to admit something? >> admission for the white house is concession and it's not in donald trump's dna to back off or jat miadmit or concede. imprinted on him as businessman and politician. they feel their strategic goal
has to be on offense. constantly pushing forward and not admit any defeat. i don't see it coming anytime soon. >> so when are the claims going to come? it's like we're going to invest the 3 million people who voted illegally, inauguration crowd size, the wiretapping thing, which got him into the predicament yesterday with the fbi director and head of the nsa. when an end or admission that i lied. >> that's a good question. i don't think we'll see one. if you look at strategically the way they manage their way through some of these crises is to create more of a distraction. just by the sheer volume of some of the untruths they promote do create a bit -- desensitize
people to it and manage their way through it. >> andre? >> i think he keeps throwing the stick and media is chasing it. credibility in the eye of the beholder. i think you -- shouldn't say you, media takes him seriously and not literally and his voters take him seriously and not literally. there is a vast difference. they want somebody fighting for him. some of the things we are talking about in the media they're not interested, doesn't affect their life. >> what does that have to do -- >> don't understand the trump phenomenon. >> what does that have to do with the things we're talking about? >> you all keep saying he's not coming up with this, he's lying about them. >> you don't think he's lying? you think trump power was wiretapped by president obama even though the head of every single intelligence agency pretty much said no, there's no evidence? do you believe it? >> i don't know how you would do
surveillance on all the people supposedly associated with he and russia without some form of surveillance. maybe not wiretapping, some type of surveillance. >> and you think the former president ordered this surveillance, there's no evidence of any surveillance either but certain people, minority by the way, believe that something -- something that is not true we should not cover it? >> no. absolutely not. i will say i don't think he should have used president in his tweet. i wish he had not. but other than that, i think he probably knows more than we think. but another fact. rasmussen said several percent of people think the country is
moving in the right direction when was 20%. >> approval rating is -- fact is a fact. every single response to something that is not favorable to donald trump is his voters don't care about it. that means nothing talking about facts. lot of people don't care about a lot of things. when people say they didn't want this or that, lot didn't believe that same sex should get married or black and white people get married or go to school together or integration. but guess what, wasn't the right thing to do or truth about what america is. does that mean we should ignore facts and ignore what most of the american people care about because a small number of people, trump supporters, not living in reality? >> not talking about what most americans care about. health care, jobs and pay. >> don't care about the truth?
>> but not about spying in russia. in facts proven. narrative pushed for weeks -- >> same thing. not proven that anyone wiretapped anyone and administration is still lying and saying it has been or proof coming down the road. head of the department who would be investigating it said there's no true so president and his spokesperson lying to the american people. that means nothing to you? >> dangerous for people on your show to say this is like watergate. there's no proof whatsoever. >> these people lived through watergate. person who broke the story is on the air. have to talk to carl about that. but i think people involved, john dean and carl bernstein would know more about water get
than any of us sitting here, who read about it in a book. wouldn't they know? >> trying the president in the court of public opinion. i hope the folks who say this will apologize to the president when there are no facts found. but to continue to push the narrative when there are no facts, nothing presented through any government agency that anything was done, keep pushing this confusing people and they say why comparing to watergate when no facts whatsoever. >> i need the nixon sound bite. there are comparisons in the way -- and i think carl bernstein and john dean were saying this, the way this particular administration treats press, very much like the nixon administration, especially in the weeks before something was found with watergate. bernstein till it's not just a smoking gun. it's a drip, drip, drip. listen to richard nixon in 1973.
>> i have never heard or seen such outrageous, vicious sort of reporting in 27 years of public life. don't get the impression that you rouse my anger. >> i have that impression. >> one can only be angry with those he respects. n >> doesn't ring of familiarity? >> not really don. again it there were facts here that had been presented and said x, y and z happened and is the president tied to that. don't have anything so far. continue to go down this road and put crowd over our president without any facts of collusion or -- >> should it continue to be investigated? >> yes. people should know. there's finality in this.
if there's something out there they think should be investigated. fine. as american i want them to make sure. but continue to beat it in the media with no facts i think is wrong. >> what do you think -- we should not talk about until they find proof. until it is all concluded. is that what you're saying? >> i'm not saying that. he's being tried in the court of the news media without any facts whatsoever. speculation, speculation. without any x, y, z, here's what was done to change the outcome, how the election was suede, hillary lost because of what the russians did. don't have any of that. >> i don't know if what you're saying is true, if hillary lost because of what the russians did. not what the intelligence shows. they made no conclusion about that. fact is yesterday we found out, c
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and we had a good laugh about that. [laughter] that's a commercial made the johnsonville way. all right. back now with my panel. so thanks for joining. listen, i understand that it is upsetting to compare this president to nixon. but one of the reasons we did it, not to pick on you andre is the president in his tweet compared the former president to richard nixon. said this is nixon/watergate stuff. bad or sick guy. saying shouldn't compare to watergate or nixon but the president made that comparison himself. bring in the other members of the panel. >> i think donald trump's stock in trade for his whole life has been allusion and deception. plo
promoted himself as more powerful than he's ever been, richer than he's ever been. now he's president credibility is a big problem. never dealt with that before. destruction of the presidency and public trust, the american public has the right to believe that the president is telling them the truth and speaking credibly. >> people think when you hold someone's feet to the fire. president trump or campaign or surrogate. something to do with ideology. it has not. this is to do with what the administration is doing and competency and hypocrisy of many people. i don't think andre is a hypocrite but to say why are people comparing nixon to this president when the president did it himself, i think it's a bit hypocritical. >> and see poor sean spicer wriggling like a worm on a hook
trying to get off it. just like ron nessen in the nixon white house, standing up there trying to justify something that's been said that's not true. so there's this stream of distortion. until the guy at top says now it's time to tell the truth, they're trapped in this lie. it's a terrible circumstance for every one of trump's supporters. >> corinne? you've been listening. what do you think? >> i think the problem is the president didn't understand what it means to be president. when you use twitter to say your predecessor essentially committed a felony, that is serious. that is potential for constitutional crisis. that's what he doesn't understand. and so -- but here's its thing. the president started his political foray by lying about president obama, saying he wasn't born here.
and continued to lie was president with the crowd size and wiretap, and what it's doing is eroding his credibility. not just as president but also the office that he holds. so it's one thing to lie as tv star. it's a whole other thing to lie as president. and don't forget the international aspect of this too. his lying is hurting, damaging our relationships with the u.k., with germany, two of our best allies. so it is disconcerting. >> and that was part -- yesterday found out u.k. said -- fbi director, nsa, department of justice, no evidence as well that president obama used u.k. and their intelligence department to spy on trump tower. this whole odd web of really just lies that comes out of the administration. kevin during director comey's testimony, official potus tweeted this, be nsa and fbi
tell congress that russia didn't influence electoral process. director comey asked if that was true. said not his intention to say that today. and sean spicer asked about that moment. >> is there concern on the part of the white house about the president's credibility that his own director is correcting his tweets and what he's saying in real time? >> let's be clear, answering questions. not like he was out there. direct quote, i have no hard evidence of collusion. end quote. director clapper. not to my knowledge. senator tom cotton. not to my knowledge. in reference to russia connections. to fact check the president for quoting them -- question should be directed at them. not us. >> and that was yesterday, my bad. do you think the white house is in denial? >> first of all you have to
remember the role that a white house staffer has. first and foremost fierce and passionate advocates for the president. and prejudice to the president's position. that's their job. but to darlene's point and hallie jackson's question, credibility is at stake. and i think one of the big challenges that this white house has is being able to make some of the arguments in a credible way so supporters on capitol hill will rally to their defense. and at the same time maintaining that credibility because -- >> how do you do that kevin? >> it's very hard right now. challenge is they're making it harder on themselves. so many unforced errors. and because the white house is put in the position of defending indefensible statements by the president. but bigger risk is the credibility of the president is going to be very important during times of crisis.
we haven't faced a huge crisis yet. keep pushing ourselves towards self-made crises but credibility to bring the country together or communicate directly to the american people so they have faith in the process or in their government, that's where this could come under assault down the line. >> new piece in "new york times" today about why president trump can't let the false claim go. write this. mr. trump who often says i'm a really smart person in public is drivenly need to prove his legitimacy as president to the many critics who deem him an unworthy virkt forever undercut by hillary clinton's three million vote in the popular vote. secondly claim about phone taps is false is important part of the president's self-image. shou
sound like the trump you have studied? >> is it does. he's about delegit miegz others and worrying about his own legitimacy. that's the game he plays. always trying to diminish everyone and fear is no one respects me. always casting for feedback from staff saying yes you're right when he's not and immune to information. things come in that contradict him and he really does ignore it. guest earlier today said the president takes in his counsel and processes it. i think what he does is ignore it if it doesn't comport with what he's hearing on fox news or other shows, he's not going to buy it. >> our discussion continues right after this.
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attempt by north korea to launch a missile. saying south korea and u.s. aware of the missile launch and to their knowledge not successfully launched. breaking news. when you consider how high the stakes are now. just reporting on failed launch of a missile by north korea. if we're unfortunately in a position where we have go to war or get into a standoff with a foreign adversary, credibility matters andre, what the president says matters and shouldn't the americans be in position to believe just about everything that comes out of the president's mouth? >> i agree with you on that. i think the military trusts this president more than the former president. they know if donald trump gets ready to engage the military, going to use them. trying to bump up the funding
for them right now. this is a guy as proud of the country as any guy we've had. believes in the military and supports them utterly. i think other countries are concerned as well if he says going to doing? he'll do something. see it in policy, with building wall. taking on the economy, getting jobs back in the country. seen these things happening in short time. less than 100 days. >> lot to unpack but get the other panel members in. karine on my orders we've done this, sending troops to here, are we to believe him? >> i don't know how we can don. this is a president who has had more things to say about crowd size, which was a lie, obama
wiretapping which was a lie and putin who undermined the democracy and got involved in the election, hasn't said much about that. isn't focusing much on the international affairs. went after china and they stole one of our missiles once he did that before he even became president. there's nothing he has shown to give us any comfort that god forbid there is international crisis where we have to go into war that we would believe him. you see that in his approval numbers. historic low. because of his lying. >> kevin, republicans are standing by the president instead of questioning directors comey and rogers yesterday about the investigation into foreign adversary interfering with the election, focusing on leaks. leaks are important but how long do you think this can last?
>> well look right now interested in supporting the president. partisan tribal instincts driving support towards the president. not new to this president. happened with other presidents. main challenge is these members of congress did not run for office to become chief litigators for the president's tweets or latest statement he makes. they're going to grow tired of that. if you look at agenda this white house and many congressional republicans have, it's ambitious one. tsz hard enough to pass tax reform, repeal a major law like obamacare and secure the borders without all these distractions. as these distractions continue to get in the way of an agenda, members of congress are going to become more and more reluctant to really become the chief defenders of the president. going to focus on their own
provincial interests. >> and interesting michael. mentioned wall. mexico will pay for it. so far not. no legislation on the wall. jobs, no difference. jobs report. last one out, can't be attributed to this president. great they have jobs but probably past administration. coming months new jobs can be attributed to this president. some of the companies that donald trump has taken trouble for, under works with president obama. health care, having a hell of a time. nothing -- there's been a lot of slight of hand and move and talk but nothing on the issues that andre is talking about. you wrote president is cherry picking hearing highlights. trump can't resist attempting to shape reality through the media and level of confidence bordering on delusional. has he always acted like this?
how did it impact his business career? >> he has always acted like this and he's had four major bankruptcies. he doesn't learn the lesson of the first and goes on to have three more. i also think the difference between a president trump and -- >> let's let andre address one point. you said it's not true. go ahead. >> in 2000, when he had the downturn and did poorly in business, 2008 came and everybody was tanking, he made a lot of money. he did learn. was no education in the second but when he did have tough time in business, next time the market went down, capitalized on it. >> four major bankruptcies, two minor ones, can't be trusted with other people's money and i think american public will start
to wonder can he be trusted with our nation? difference between nixon and donald trump is nixon was competent. understood foreign affairs. didn't alienate two allies, australia and great britain in the first days of office. at some point allies stop sharing information with us and volunteering for coalitions. >> if you don't want to be compared to nixon, don't compare your predecessor in nixon. next up, wait until you hear who is giving the president advice on his travel ban. and a team of experienced traders ready to help if you need it. it's like having the power of a trading floor, wherever you are. it's your trade. e*trade weeds. nature's boomerang. at roundup®, we know they keep coming back. you never invited this stubborn little rascal to your patio. so, draw the line.
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dershowitz. good to have you on. ask you about the hearings, how is he doing? >> very well. but made three serious unforced errors. he should never have tried to justify his dissenting opinion in this truck driver case. should have admitted he made a mistake, he was wrong and human. no way of interpreting that statute the way he did. >> can i explain to the viewers? exchange between senator al franken and judge gorsuch. took the judge to task for a ruling against a truck driver who claims to have been unrightfully fired. tires froze. reported to company and waited for repair truck to arrive.
waiting allegedly started to suffer from hypothermia. walked away and returned later. fired for abandoning the trailer. >> two safety issues here. one, possibility of freezing to death, or driving with that rig in very dangerous way. which would you have done judge? >> senator, i don't know what i would have done in his shoes and don't blame him at all for doing what he did do. i empathize with him entirely. >> talking about this case. haven't thought about what you would have done? thought about for a second? >> i thought a lot about this case. >> what would you have done. >> i empathize. >> i'm asking a question. please answer. >> i wasn't in the man's shoes. >> you don't know. i tell you, i would have done exactly what he did.
i think everybody here would have done exactly what he did. and i think that's easy answer. frankly, i don't know why you had difficulty answering that. so you decide to write a thing in dissent. if you read your dissent, don't say it was subzero but say it was cold out. the facts that you describe in your dissent are minimal but here's the law that -- and you go to the language of the law. you talk about that. i go to the law. a person may not discharge an employee who refuses to operate a vehicle because the employee has reasonable apprehension of serious injury to the employee or the public because of the vehicle's hazardous safety or
security condition. that's the law. and you decided they had the right to fire him. even though the law says may not discharge employee who refuses to operate a vehicle because he did operate the vehicle. is that right? how you decided right? >> gist of it. >> no. is that how you decided? >> senator, a lot more words in the opinions, majority of my colleagues and dissent but happy to agree with you that's the gist of it. >> that's what you've said. and look, i'm not a lawyer. but i've been on this committee for about eight years. and i paid some attention. so i know that what you're talking about here is the plain meaning rule. here's what the rule means. when the meaning of the statute is clear on its face, meaning is
obvious, courts have no business looking beyond the meaning to the statute's purpose. >> argued to us by both sides. both sides argued that plain meaning supported their -- >> and you used it to come to your conclusion. but the plain meaning rule has an exception. when using the plain meaning rule would create an absurd result, courts should depart from the plain meaning. it is absurd to say this company is in its rights to fire him because he made the choice,
possibly dying from freezing to death or causing other people to die possibly by driving an unsafe vehicle. that's absurd. now, i had a career in identifying absurdity. and i know it when i see it. and it makes me, you know -- it makes me question your judgment. >> so you were discussing. do you think that franken was too harsh? >> i no. i think he got the better of the argument. statute says vehicle. there were two vehicles. one was the cab of the truck. other was trailer. refused to drive the trailer. plain meaning of the statute didn't allow him to be fired and franken is right when he said there was absurdity.
gorsuch better off saying i made a mistake. i'm human. no way to defend that by law, morality, interpretation, it's absurd and should have just admitted it. >> you said three things. what other two things? >> he said no difference between the rules regarding precedent and circuit court judge and supreme court justice, just plain wrong. and third he looked us in the eye and said he would have walked into the room if the president had asked him to reverse roe versus wade. wouldn't have walked out of the room but would have said to the president, that's inappropriate question and if you insist on that, wouldn't accept this position. that's hyperbole. did well. better than most of the senators
other than al franken who asked hard questions. >> switch gears. talk about your conversation in mar-a-largo, president struck up the conversation. give us the details. >> he came over and started smoozing. we talked about the travel ban, wiretapping, leaks, gorsuch, ninth circuit, range of issues. then he left and went and have dinner and came back to say goodbye and stayed another ten minutes and kept smuzing and talking to me, values my opinion. i told him i didn't vote for him. oh, you're one of the very view who didn't vote for me. then he said if i can get this guy to vote for me in 2020 be accomplishment. never voted republican. i said you're right. i have open mind. >> any chance you would vote for
him? >> i have open mind. as patriotic mernamerican, i sa day after the election, root for success whoever is president. i'm skeptical. at moment wouldn't vote for him. want him to change and be a good president. has to do a lot. but i'm american first. as american, i want to see him be successful president. >> but he's got to make some -- >> oh, yeah. >> alterations, course corrections. you said you discussed the travel ban. you've made it clear in the past while you don't agree with the ban you do think it's constitutional. what advice did you give the president that you can share? >> only advice i gave him was on your show. withdraw the first ban and do better one that might be constitutional. we talked about my prediction
that the court would find it constitutional. vindicated a day later by five judges of the ninth circuit who said the stay orders were absurd. brilliant judge, made it clear he thought the supreme court would vacate the stays and uphold the statute. i think they will uphold the major parts of the rule. >> you gave him no advice in mar-a-largo? >> i just told him i predicted would be upheld. he said something about maybe going back to the first order. i didn't suggest that because i said earlier, i thought the second order had better chance of surviving. >> are you official adviser now? >> may be last time i see him in person. no idea. invited to have dinner with my wife, thought a quiet dinner. vice president came over. first lady. >> having dinner with chris --
at mar-a-largo, come on? you know the president is coming over. >> didn't know the president was going to be there. week he was supposed to go, wasn't there. we couldn't make it. secretary of commerce came over. i was probably only democrat in the restaurant. >> on inauguration night i went to the trump hotel in washington, d.c., interesting time to be had by all. >> i had fascinating time. >> you can pretty much guarantee every weekend he's at mar-a-largo except for one or two. coming back, ivanka trump moving to west wing. what role will the first daughter have in the white house? get on your feet for the nastiest bull in the state of texas. ♪
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always a pleasure. you were on last night, weren't you? >> i was. good to be back. >>. >> i want to start with you. you wrote a tough column for cosmo about this. here's part of what you said. she sits with foreign dignitaries is setting up an office in the white house and issued government communication devices and seeking clearance. what is she doing? nobody knows. what qualifies her? being the president's daughter. there is a word for this. nepotism. it makes everything i varcvanka done to position herself as an example for working women. >> why nepotism? >> the only reason she is getting west wing space is because she is the president's daughter. she is a direct load line to the president. no one else has the privilege she does in that position that doesn't have a title.
we don't know about this vague description. what is most is the way of smoothing over the concerns of this. she will volunteer to abide by ethics laws. no one else gets to volunteer. you are expected to comply by them. will she volunteer to go to jail if she does not? i don't think so. everything about this arrangement signifies privilege in a special position for a presidential daughter that is nothing other than nepotism. >> she will not receive a salary or title. does that make a difference to you? >> not really. this piece is excellent. i don't think the house is a place for on the job training with regard to national security matters. we knew this was going to happen and she has been a part of his
business and with the campaign. she has been a strong advocate for working moms and was crucial in the human trafficking legislation that is being discussed and will give him the peace of mind and comfort he wants. looking back to 1993, hillary clinton set up shop in the white house. the white house press secretary was asked why and she said because the president wants her to be there to work. the same standard holds true here. president trump like it or not wants her there and she will be there, like it or not. >> is is there a difference between a first daughter and first lady? >> this is a huge bait and switch who said it was fake news that he was seeking clearance for any of hiss or daughters.
now that is not the case. that is a huge game changer. ivanka trump is no advocate for working women. she is taking a job from a well qualified woman who most personal has more national security experience than her. i don't know why ivanka trump is at that table for critical decision making. someone needs to explain that. i think there are far more qualified men and women to have that spot in the white house. >> the only -- >> she has her own interest like fashion line and jewelry brand. she stepped down from daily management, but is that enough to eliminate conflicts of interest? >> she seized control of her fashion industry and she is going to comply with ethics
rules and regulations. the bottom line is we knew that she was going to be part of this campaign or administration. she is doing so. i think the fact that she doesn't have a title and has a loose portfolio gives her more power and can walk in and out. >> i'm out of time. >> that gives her more time. >> thank you all, i appreciate it. see you here tomorrow. is there an elk in your bed? with sleep number, there's an adjustment for that. tilt your tormentor and put those snores to sleep. does your bed do that? come into a sleep number store where mattresses start at $899. it's a no brainer.
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good evening from washington. we begin with president trump trying to do what he does best. close a deal. they are predicting failure this evening. a dinner for republicans, he pushed again for the house republican legislation to replace the oraffordable care a. this is something they campaigned on. the president will promise cheaper health care and insurance coverage for all. the new legislation did not deliver and republican members delivered too much,