leaving the white house his longtime friend christopher ruddy claims the president is considering firing special counsel robert mueller, the man in charge of investigating possible collusion between the trump campaign and russia. >> i think he's weighing that option. i think it's pretty clear by what one of his lawyers said on television recently. i personally think it would be a very significant mistake. >> white house press secretary sean spicer insisting mr. ruddy never spoke to the president regarding this issue. but hours earlier spicer's deputy said ruddy speaks for himself. several trump allies attacking mueller's credibility despite initially praising his appointment. former trump campaign adviser newt beggingrich said, republic are delusional if they think special counsel will be fair. praised mueller as a good choice. cnn analysis of records reveals
three of the five lawyers on mueller's team have donated almost exclusively to democrats with two giving the maximum donation to hillary clinton's 2016 campaign. still white house sources said they are urging him not to fire mueller, a move lawmakers feel would backfire. >> it would be absolutely astonishing if he were to entertain this. the echos of watergate are louder and louder. >> all this before testimony of embattled jeff sessions. he's expected to face a grilling about russia and firing of james comey. >> he was very close to and inevitably going to recuse himself for a variety of reasons. we also were aware of facts i can't discuss in an open setting that would make his continued engagement in a russia investigation problematic. >> sources tell cnn comey told
senators behind closed doors may have had a third meeting with kislyak which the justice department denies. it will likely be brought up along with an account sessions was booted before a meeting in february when the president asked him to drop the michael flynn investigation. >> my sense was the attorney general knew he shouldn't be leaving, which is why he was lingering. >> it's unclear if sessions will invoke executive privilege to avoidancing questions. >> do you believe executive privilege in conversations with the president -- >> it depends on the scope of the questions. >> of course the other big questions lingering in washington, are there tapes between president trump and james comey. it's a president the president refuse toss answer but secret service telling "wall street journal" they know of no such recordings and more than a dozen white house staffers told cnn
they also do not believe those tapes exist. of course there is a deadline of friday for the white house to produce those tapes if they do, in fact, exist. chris and alisyn. >> thank you. let's bring in panel, maggie haberman, jeffrey toobin and reporter and editor-at-large for cnn politics chris cillizza. reporting on this this morning, it would be easy to dismiss ruddy under the category of with friends like these who needs ene enemas with president trump on this. it's not just him. people are questioning, it seems, with some type of guile here bob mueller. what's at play? >> two things going on. in terms of what's going on with bob mueller and questioning, you're seeing no action viewed as nonpartisan anymore. you're basically seeing everything -- if a democrat does something, therefore they are doing it for partisan reasons. therefore he has people working for him that are democrats. you have a lot of conservatives who see the main option for
giving the president antibodies on this is to question bob mueller's credibility. it's interesting. have you a lot of people former house speaker who has been critical, initially said this is fabulous, a great choice. in fact, bob mueller's credentials were so solid he interviewed for the fbi intern job yesterday thanks to mr. ruddy i think a day before he was named as special counsel. that in and of itself is interesting. in terms of what ruddy is doing, i take the opposite view. i don't think this is a friend enema situation other than the idea he's trying to basically kill this. i think you're seeing what you have seen over and over again with president trump where someone goes public essentially to talk to him through the press, because it would be very odd to do a trial balloon that ends in the next sentence with, and i think this would be a really bad idea, which is what chris ruddy did. the other problem this white house has, they refuse to answer the question yes or no over the course of five hours. the president is thinking of this or not.
sean spicer helpfully cleared it up five hours later or so, said the president speaks for himself, that's it. great. >> he said ruddy speaks for himself. >> the president later -- >> i apologize. >> yes. ruddy speaks for himself, too, which i don't think was in dispute. the white house is facing a problem of, number one, the fact that so many people come in and out of this white house that when you see people physically in the building you do assume they know what they are talking about, number one. >> sure. >> number two, you cannot literally from the very first news conference, or whatever that was sean spicer did about the crowd size the day after the inauguration, you can't tell people who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes day after day after day and not expect it to hit you in terms of the benefit of the doubt. i do know a number of aides are telling the president this is a bad idea. this is a president who may or may for the have said this seriously at some point.
he says lots of things. >> jeffrey, i hate to get out too far ahead of this, because it is speculation, however, since the white house won't answer it, what happens if president trump fires his own lead, where he fires james comey then fires bill mueller, then the investigation goes away? what happens? >> let's start with how he would have to fire him. unthe rules of the special counsel, he can't just say you're fired. he has to instruct the attorney general from firing him. the attorney general is recused so it would be rose nstein who just hired him. then the question is would rosenstein follow through or would he like elliot richardson in 1973 arefuse to fire the special prosecutor in that case and then wait for someone lower in the chain to do it. that's what the saturday night
massacre was. the question is firing him is not as simple as on "the apprentice" firing someone. but if he was fired, the investigation would go away. >> congress would then intervene, right? >> yes, that's true. they would have to pass a law like the ethics in government act. but if anyone believes paul ryan and mitch mcconnell would on a dime set up a special prosecutor. >> legislation would have to make its way to the president. >> so i think he really could kill the investigation if he wanted. presumably he would pay a political price for that. but as a practical matter, i think he could do it. >> chris cillizza, your thoughts. >> politically it would be a death sentence to do that except that this is donald trump. so what looks like a death sentence -- i got out of the donald trump predictions game
right around -- >> november 9th. >> no, before that. i got out in february 2016 when he started winning things. who knows the political loss of kbrafity do look like they hold more to donald trump resident than donald trump candidate, when he says and does things, unfavorable at 59, half of that is strongly unfavorable. it does look like political gravity does hold for him. i think it would be crazy for him to do it, that doesn't mean he won't do it. i agree with maggie. i think this is chris ruddy talking to the president of the united states in the one way he knows he will listen, on television. >> look, if nothing else they got 8:30 of talking about whether or not mueller is going to go rather than what mueller is doing. maggie, jeff sessions, this
matter today was supposed to be about oversight. he said i'm not going to that. i'm sending my deputy to those. then he wanted intel privately. even burr said, no, it's got to be public. today how deep do we expect the questioning to go, not because of potential immunity play, but what the questions are. >> chris cillizza's mark of predictions, with that caveat, i don't think we're going to hear that much. the people who think we're doing to hear james comey part two, they are likely to be disappointed. you will see the attorney general get pressed on a couple of different areas. the main one is going to be why he didn't reveal everything about meetings he had had. >> do we know what his answer is? >> i don't personally know, others on the panel might. >> he's answered before. >> he said he did not mean in a campaign capacity so he didn't
report every senatorial contact he had. >> how does that work for you. i meet with a lot of people, not special about this, nothing covered of any interest to anybody, so i just didn't mention it. >> again, that may yet involve the special counsel, because the form that he fills out does not say did you meet in one capacity or another, it just said did you meet. so it is a false and inaccurate statement. the question is will mueller regard it as an intentional false statement worthy of investigation and prosecution. >> then of course, chris cillizza, he'll also be asked about that exchange between president trump and james comey and why, number one, he was described as lurking around during that conversation and then why he allowed himself to be dismissed from the room so president trump would not have further conversation with james comey. >> don't forget follow-up at
least as comey describes it, you have to stop the president from doing these sorts of things. and sessions gives no answer, is silent. to comey's description sort of gives the, you know, i don't know -- >> push back on that, right, chris. >> i think if you're going to hear an immunity, you know, that would probably be the most likely category for it, because that's a sticky wicket. what did you know about that conversation? why did you leave? you left because the president told you to. that was tough to get around. what did you ask about what comey said? what did you do about it? do you know -- >> those are tough questions, likely duck them. >> he will likely duck them. jeff sessions made his bones in this campaign for his unflinching loyalty to donald trump. i'm skeptical that today is the day ties break. >> there is reporting there's more bad blood now than there
was. >> no question. but jeff sessions, i think, wants to keep his job, alisyn. now, he's not going to perjure himself. there's limits. maggie said this isn't a comey part two. i think we should prepare for that. the idea that jeff sessions is going to crack the case wide open i think is unlikely given what we know about jeff sessions. my thought is what he'll say is, you know, jim comey misread that situation. i left the room because the president asked me to leave the room. when jim comey asked me to intercede, i made clear to him i would. it's the same thing, he said, he said. his perception is this. my perception is that. >> i remember reading a long time ago, a clear conscious never threattons resign. it will be interesting what sessions will say he knew. we'll see soon enough. cnn special coverage of the
hearing is going to begin at 2:00 p.m. eastern. >> president trump's first full cabinet meeting took a bizarre turn. watch this. >> vice president to the president, keeping his word to the american people. >> the entire senior staff around you, mr. president, we thank you for the opportunity and pleasing you've given us to serve your agenda. >> did the president order his cabinet secretaries to praise him in front of the cameras? our panel takes that up next. >> i make him do that. e and choose what's right for you. woah. flo and jamie here to see hqx. flo and jamie request entry. slovakia. triceratops. tapioca. racquetball. staccato. me llamo jamie. pumpernickel. pudding. employee: hey, guys! home quote explorer. it's home insurance made easy. password was "hey guys."
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all right. so there's kissing up to the boss, and then there's this. president trump held his first official cabinet meeting, and it turned into a rather bizarre lovefest. the president's top brass lavishing praise one after another on him, seemingly trying to outpraise each other. listen. >> thank you, mr. president,. this is greatest privilege of my life serving as vice president to the president keeping his word to the american people. >> mr. president, i'm privileged to be here, deeply honored. i want to thank you for keeping your commitment to the american workers. >> mr. president, what an incredible honor it is to leave t
-- lead the department of health and human services. i can't thank you for the leadership you've shown. >> mr. president, thank you for the honor to serve the country. it's a privilege you've given me. >> on behalf of senior staff around you, mr. president, we thank you for the opportunity and blessing you've given us to serve your agenda and the american people. >> if you'll excuse me, i'll have to shower now. back with us, maggie haberman, jeffrey toobin and chris slice as. what's happening here? >> you know exactly what's happening. >> before do you think he said cameras are here, say something good about me. >> i don't think the president ordered that edict, maybe another person ordered that edict. those who have seen mr. trump a long time at trump tower know this is how his staff talk to him, too. it's not a huge leap. with everything, this is the seat of the u.s. government. this is a cabinet room, a somber meeting. look, it is absolutely a privilege to serve as vice president.
it is absolutely -- i thought rex tillerson was the most demure, honor to serve your agenda. thanks for giving me the opportunity. everything else translated into what i thought "the washington post" captured, dear leader language we don't hear in this country. that was surreal. >> it was very north korean, i thought. interestingly because i'm weird, i watched that whole video. mattis, secretary of defense mattis does not exactly play along. he says i'm proud to represent the men and women in uniform. he does not do praise. >> here is mattis. >> an honor to represent the men and women of the department of defense. we're grateful for the sacrifices our people are making, the strength of the military, our diplomats from a position of strength. >> one of the things you tip to see with donald trump is he has a real difficulty distinguishing
between the personal and the institutional. so he has -- there is this weird sort of quality about how he runs this government. you saw mattis there as the only person who really didn't join in that and made clear this is about something broader, this is about country, we are in shared sacrifice. this meeting is a distillation of the problems you see this president inflict upon himself repeatedly. >> look, i want to thank the president for the opportunity to discuss a very important issue with you, chris cillizza, which is this notion that balance means you must be nice, and you can criticize. but there must be a leavening of both. margaret sullivan took this on well in the "washington post" but that's not the right question. the question is not whether or not you're being nice to the president, it's whether you're point guard fair covering the things that matter. there is this -- this is perfect what just happened at the meeting. this is what the white house is
saying. you have to be nice, too. >> there's a tendency to dismiss stuff like this, because, look, no policy got me. it was a photo-op that turned into something else. i think these sorts of moments or windows into donald trump's psyche, how he views the world, him at the center of it and everyone else a helpful spoek in that wheel. the idea you would have these people, billionaires, tremendously accomplish pem in the military, reince pribz, whatever you think of him, chairman of the committee, serious person, they would do around and each sort of lavish praise on him while he sat there. i was watching the video there. his role is remarkable in that. just imagine if you guys had the "new day" staff all sitting around a table and they just went around and praised you. it would feel odd for you. you would almost certainly feel a little uncomfortable.
>> or great. >> cuomo would be fine. alisyn -- >> i'll be honest, it's not what happens at our staff meetings, i'll tell you right now. >> look, the normal human reaction even if you didn't feel this way would be a bit abashed. yeah, i guess i am pretty great. his response is to sort of like preen, you know, nod knowingly because that's what he is. he's a performer. he wants to be praised. he wants to be surrounded by people hotel him he's great. >> the late night comics made some hey ay of this. listen. >> this is next level weird. this is an unprecedented public strokefest for an emotionally frail man, okay. that is absolutely chilling, right, mark? right, boss, absolutely true. whatever you say. it's an honor, sir.
>> that's right. there's never been a president who has done more. even bill clinton took six years to get impeached. i might do it in six months, you guys. we are racing. we are racing. >> chris, the point you made about how -- i missed the margaret sullivan piece. it is absolutely true. this has been the case for trump since the dawn of trump. you used to get calls when you would cover himling before he was a candidate, everything is so negative. why is this so negative. can't you write a nice story. that is not the job certainly of what journalists do, that is not -- welcome to washington, mr. trump. it is not a nice town. there is a degree to which we are hitting the expiration date of the learning curve period. he's been there six months now. at a certain point -- but he's never going to change. this is who he is.
>> he's not a victim. the important point for people to remember is it's not like this is coming out of nowhere when the president is being criticized. if you tweet, say, or do something outrageous as president of the united states, it tends to bite you. >> i also think our behavior has changed and i think in a good way. we especially in the more mainstream press did have a preoccupation with balance. any time somebody said x, we got some be to say -- then donald trump started saying there were thousands of people cheering after 9/11. there were the biggest crowds ever at the inauguration. and that barack obama wiretapped him. we started saying, that's false. there are not two sides to that story. that's false. i think that is a positive development in our business because we're being honest. we're not manufacturing balance when there is none to be found. >> so chris, obviously there's still the question lingering about whether or not the
president taped james comey. the white house seems unable to answer a simple yes or no. we've been promised this week we will get an answer. >> by friday. donald trump, again, always playing the reality tv show host. basically on friday at that joint press conference, stay tuned, very soon, we'll have something, dot dot dot, cliffhanger. >> i don't understand why. what's the political advantage of that? >> there is none. >> why is that -- >> because that's who he is. >> enjoy watching the show. >> that's who he is. >> because you don't know, you're going to ask about this. this is doing to take your attention. there's intrigue, buildup, gives him power. >> makes no sense politically. >> that's the question. >> that you would want to deal with it and have it over with. but who he is is keep the eyeballs on me. all press is good press. as long as they are talking about me i'm winning. >> he's right. how can you even question that
at this point after watching it over the past two years. this is what he does. what is the political advantage in half this stuff, including saying there are thousands of theerg muslims on 9/11 there we cheering muslims 9/11, which is not true. >> made him a vehicle of message for that group. >> i give you all that, still a politically risky thing. just because he managed to gamble correctly does not mean every single time there is a clea clear motive or a gamble he's going to win and has thought out. >> -- health care. >> i'm with maggie, i think -- >> wait a minute. chris and maggie, not just one side of the box, you can if there are tapes, they are coordinated a message of confusion. >> they coordinate a message of confusion on other things, too. >> what's the point of a message
of confusion. >> rather be talking about health care. >> they still have the ball. you want to know if we have tapes. at the end of the week when they say, yeah, there are no tapes. you guys are crazy. that's why people hate you. but you never answered. >> it's the "snl" parody of sean spicer. that's your word, ban, echoing your language. that's what this is like. why are you guys so obsessed with the tapes. well, because you said there were tapes and you're the president of this then they say i never said there were tapes. i said you better hope there aren't tapes. >> my answer will disappoint you. >> all right. well, thank you for that lively debate. >> all right. so just when you think, boy, donald trump, he's really pushed it. he is nothing compared to the man who is about to enter the
fray once again in north korea. dennis rodman is heading back. the best detail we can tell you is who is sponsoring him to go to north korea. we have a live report from pyongyang. rodman is back. tech: when you schedule with safelite autoglass, you get time for more life. this family wanted to keep the game going. son: hey mom, one more game? tech: with safelite, you get a text when we're on our way. you can see exactly when we'll arrive. mom: sure.
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dennis rodman arriving in north korea just hours ago. it is not clear whether the eccentric hall of famer was sent there by the white house. there's no indication it was. rodman is hinting his old pal donald trump is happy about the trip. will ripley live from pyongyang with more. this is a little bit bizarre even on the rodman scale. the sponsor of the trip, timing of the trip. what do we know about any, any
white house involvement at all? >> we don't know anything about white house involvement. in fact, the state department is saying this is absolutely not official visit in any capacity. they were aware the trip was happening. probably because we called them and told them. initially on the phone they were quite surprised about the trip. dennis rodman is friends with donald trump, and on "celebrity apprentice" twice, and with him in 2015. leader kim giancarlo. this is his fifth visit. he put together a basketball game. he sang happy birthday to the leader. it's not clear if the leader will agree to meet with him this time. what is clear it's sponsored by u.s. digital currency industry who specializes in marijuana industry, a company he's pitching numerous times throughout the trip. he's even wearing the company t-shirt. he wore it yesterday in beijing when cnn spoke to him this.
>> just a private citizen, spoken to president trump at all. >> i'm pretty sure he's pretty much happy about the fact that i'm over here trying to accomplish something that we both need. >> what are you trying to do, sir. >> open the door. that's it. >> are you doing to talk at all about the detained americans? >> that's not my purpose right if you. >> so is there back channel diplomacy or just a publicity stunt? we don't know the answer to that. but alisyn, certainly should be an interesting few days in north korea. >> certainly will be. we're glad you're on the ground to bring all the theater of the absurd to us, will. thank you very much. we'll check back. meanwhile we have to tell you about this story. two navy s.e.a.l.s killed earlier during secret high-risk operations overseas. how they died and details about t mission have not been discussed until now. a cnn exclusive next.
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dover air force base gunned down in an insider attack at the pentagon. named three soldiers as sergeant dillon balanced ridge, eric houck, williams bays. this comes after the death of two navy s.e.a.l.s killed in action this year. cnn has an exclusive report live from the pentagon. what have you learned, barbara. >> good morning, alisyn. one navy s.e.a.l. against 400 militants and that is just the beginning. navy s.e.a.l. ryan owens 36, killed in action in january in yemen during a nighttime raid targeting al qaeda operatives. it's one of the most dangerous migs that special operations forces are called upon to carry out. navy s.e.a.l. kyle milliken, 38, also killed but in somalia last
month. also during a raid while serving as a military adviser to somali forc forces. the two navy s.e.a.l.s spent years on secret missions in dangers few knew anything about. congressman scott taylor, a former navy s.e.a.l. sniper knew them. >> a big tragedy we lost both of those men. they were outstanding heroes for our nation. >> cnn has obtained the battlefield citations for both owens and milliken, both of whom served for years on high-risk classified combat missions. new details now revealed of their extraordinary service. owens was posthumously awarded the silver star, the nation's third highest medal for value or in a never disclosed battle against 400 al qaeda militants in 2015. u.s. officials say it all happened deep inside war-torn somalia. this secret battle raged for
three days in july 2015. owens leading a 12-man team alongside african forces targeting 400 enemy militants, constantly ambushed and attacked with small arms, machine guns, anti-aircraft guns, rocket-propelled grenades, mortars and improvised explosive devices according to his citation. owens repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire. the citation said eventually the team securing a town that had been in enemy hands for ten years. on earlier tours he helped rescue buddies down and wounded and medevac'd in choppers under fire. >> from what i know about him, great guy, highly committed, highly talented. >> from somalia, yemen, iraq, afghanistan, it's largely fallen on special forces to wage battle
against isis, al qaeda, and their affiliates, and they are increasingly paying with their lives. five killed in action in 2017, 22 since june 2014 when the war against isis began. taylor, like so many who have served on the front lines rejects the controversial pentagon view when troops are military advisers they must stay out of the direct line of fire. >> there's no boots on the ground, just advisers. we know that's b.s., they are all poots on the ground. >> mill kevin's final mission -- >> certainly can't plame the operator for wanting to get spot fight. they are there on the dproupd with the forces they are helping. >> scott taylor recalls his own first mission in iraq, which was alongside milliken. >> everyone loved kyle. everyone loved him. >> milliken had years of combat. in 2007 alone, 47 in iraq, on
the one mission he helped three s.e.a.l.s under fire. he was awarded navy achievement medal for developing ground breaking procedures for future national mission taskings. in the world of special operations, national missions are the most classified requiring presidential approval and remaining secret for decades. in the final testament to their service, after both men were killed, the pentagon quietly did acknowledge that both have served with s.e.a.l. team six, the secretive union that killed bin laden. alisyn, chris. >> barbara, obviously our hearts do out to their families who also serve alongside them. as barbara makes a point, it doesn't matter how you term the involvement, putting america's
fighting men and women on the ground in war theater is going to result in casualties and deaths. their sacrifice has to be remembered and reported. thank you to barbara starr for that. big news out of the sports world. we have a new world champion. the warriors for the second time in three years. the bleacher report has all the details. is this the dynasty of the current era?
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so you save up to 30% on the hotel you want. lock it in. tripadvisor. >> the line says the warriors steal the crown from king james and the cavs, but they didn't steal a dang thing, they trounced cleveland cavaliers to win their second. what do you say, coy wire, you're good looking, do you think this is it is new dynasty of the era. >> they are looking tough and all in their 20s, chris. this could be the case. they blew the 3- 1 lead last year. they have been on a mission since. they only lost one game in the playoffs. they picked up kevin durant to bolster their squad. some say the warriors needed him but i'm not so sure they could have won it without him the way they did. he's the first player since
shaquille o'neal in 2000 to post five straight 30-point games in an nba final. final choice mvp. lebron james showing some love and respect. you know, all this time, durant on a mission to get his first ever title, his mother has been there with him the entire time. here is durant after the game talking about the win and his mom. >> i just wanted to lay it all out there. i put in work, trust in it. we were really good. have to sit behind cleveland. i told you when i was 8 years old we did it. >> in the locker room after, a reported 150 bottles of champagne costing $1200. that's about $180 grand, i believe. what a celebration. the fans will get to celebrate with the warriors. the parade already planned for thursday in oak, alisyn.
>> i would drink champagne with goggles on also, just in case. >> crack me up. >> thank you so much. robert mueller's appointment last month drew praise from both sides of the aisle but now republicans are changing their tune. we discuss next. tech: when you schedule with safelite autoglass, you get a text when we're on our way. you can see exactly when we'll arrive. i'm micah with safelite. customer: thanks for coming, it's right over here. tech: giving you a few more minutes for what matters most. take care. kids singing: safelite® repair, safelite® replace. i'm the one clocking in... when you're clocking out.
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it's hepatitis c. one in 30 boomers has hep c, yet most don't even know it. because it can hide in your body for years without symptoms, and it's not tested for in routine blood work. the cdc recommends all baby boomers get tested. if you have hep c, it can be cured. for us it's time to get tested. ask your healthcare provider for the simple blood test. it's the only way to know for sure. there is so much on the table this morning of the president tweeting once again in a way that is doing to drive the news cycle. let's get into it. we have big issues whether or not bob mueller is going to stay in his job. we just had a big court decision on the travel ban and the president tweeted about all of it. first he started off with a shot at the media. fake news, never been so wrong or so dirty, purposefully incorrect stories and phony sources to meet their agenda of hate.
sad. i hope he's not talking about his media friend chris ruddy always driving the news cycle by saying the president is considering something preposterous, getting rid of special counsel. ninth circuit, held travel ban in abeyance, can't go into effect yet. as predicted, ninth circuit ruled against travel ban, such a dangerous time in the history of our country, s.c. i assume that means supreme court, usually abbreviated scotus but twitter is shorter. executive editor of bloomberg view and trump nation, "the art of being the donald." do you believe the president should seriously consider getting rid of bob mueller, a man who was lionized by
republicans, now being somewhat savaged. >> no, he's simply putting his team together, looking over the information comey has given him. we ought to let him do his job. rosenstein, number two at doj, unlike fitzgerald, a previous special counsel, a u.s. attorney, bob mueller is not u.s. attorney, picked as special counsel, a little bit of a protected class for that reason. >> all right. other headline that we're seeing this morning. tim, you've been talking about this a little bit. you have a take on why trump is playing this about taped conversations. i want to hear that. you see the travel ban tweet as code as well. what isses expressing in that? >> his lack of understanding or checks and balances, in keeping with a long tradition of trump of taking potshots at judiciary and law enforcement officials. i think he's got a powerful
perch but he's yet to show he understands he should use it in a more judicious way. >> you've been involved in litigation with him in the past. the threat/suggestion of tapes of the conversations came up in that litigation as a way of pushing you back a little bit. what happened there? >> avis reporter at the "new york times" at the time. i was reporting there and wrote a book about him. he sued me for the book, liable for trump nation. during the course of the reporting over a year we were in regular contact. sometimes our telephone conversations he'd finish off the conversation with saying you don't mind if i'm taping this, do you? i would say, no, no. that's fine. i would be in his office and he'd say you don't mind if i turn on my taping system, do you? i'd say no. when litigation rolled around, we wanted access to the tape. we thought it would reflect well. efts asked during a deposition, have you taped mr. o'brien. he said new york city, i don't. i don't have a taping system.
my lawyer said, why did you say this to him. i thought it would intimidate him, make him nervous. i think that's what's going on with jim comey. i don't think trump has tapes. i think comey is unnerved by the fact he made a record of the conversations. he wants to put out this red herring out there that doesn't exist. >> what do you take of this tactic about not answering the question about whether tapes exist. there's swo of an imposed deadline on friday, what do you make of this? >> i don't know. there's so much happening with jeff sessions testifying, i think we should talk about tapes if he shows tapes. everyone i talked to, people i worked with in the white house tell me the chances of any tapes, can't imagine there would be tapes. i do think donald trump has had to forego so much leaking from the executive branch in an unprecedented way that i think everyone is a little spooked on when something is taped, when
there's a deposition, even people who have been doing this a long time wonder with all the new technology and our digital devices, what actually does get taped. i think we should cover it if it comes up, if not -- >> what about the tactic of saying whether or not there were tapes. >> what about the tactic james comey did, the first time ever i wrote an account with a president. i went on twitter last night and read another account of his interaction with george w. bush which had to come from jim comey, which was eerily similar. he talked with the grand father clock, trying to slip out the door by the grandfather clock. so many things with james comey. >> it's a good tactic, good environment. >> why did he say it's the only time he's done it. also in the book of the angler, one-on-one account with george w. bush was written about. that to me is a.
>> bob: >> that's your opinion. it's fine. have you it. >> no, it's a book. >> i'm saying based on what you read in a book, this is your opinion whether or not he's being truthful about whether he's done this before. >> maybe he forgot. >> let me ask you this, why is that the answer to the question i asked, what do you make of the tactic of pretending there are tapes and stringing it out for over a week when you are the white house and the president of the united states. do you bless that tactic? >> what i bless and don't bless doesn't matter. >> it does. you're onon my show and i'm asking your opinion as swab who is relevant. >> if there are no tapes, as i said to alisyn, it doesn't make sense to me. i think it's a failed tactic. that being said, i don't know until he says definitively, yes, there are, or no, there are not. he's going to tell us. until that happens, all i can say is the people i talked to
are saying it's doubtful. >> what happens when it's about whether or not telling people tax relief, next week. you want these tactics. matt schlapp, you matter, my brother. that's why i have you on the show. your opinion matters. thank you, as always. thanks to you, our international viewers. thank you for watching us. for you "cnn newsroom" is next. for cnn viewers, the president is tweeting, making news. guess what, we're doing to get after it. >> you have to start asking what is the president so desperate to hide from the american people. >> he's considering perhaps terminating the special counsel. he's weighing that option. >> what the hell are we investigating? >> this seems more like an evident to prosecute donald trump. >> we're not doing to let the president choose to conduct this investigation. >> do you believe he should invoke executive privilege? >> depends on the scope