tv At This Hour With Kate Bolduan CNN October 20, 2017 8:00am-9:00am PDT
hello. i'm kate bolduan. today a public viewing set to get under way for sergeant la david johnson in hollywood, florida, one of the four u.s. service members killed after an isis affiliated group ambushed their 12-man team in niger. their deaths, sacrifices, and the reasons for it all huge questions still. all being investigated still and also still in danger of being overshadowed by a very sad he said, she said, they said now about the president's condolence call to johnson's family. the president's chief of staff john kelly who lost his own son in afghanistan made an extraordinary appearance in the press briefing room yesterday to talk about what that kind of loss means, what the president's intentions were, and also how upset he was when a
congresswoman said the president offended the family of la david johnson. >> it stuns me that a member of congress would have listened in on that conversation. absolutely stuns me. and i thought, at least that was sacred. >> well that was not the last word, though. this morning, the president calling florida congresswoman frederica wilson whacky and a liar, even though the family has confirmed her account of what he said. wilson now responding on cnn this morning. >> the only reason i came on this morning was to say that i do not appreciate someone lying on me. if you lie on me i'm going to answer because i'm not going to let you get away with it. that's the way i teach my boys and that's the way i live my life. don't lie on me. >> none of this, though, gets us any closer to the crucial questions here and that can't be lost of what happened to
sergeant johnson and the three other members of his team that were killed. what happened to that team at that village in niger, the 12 men team. why did it happen. and what's going to be done now about it. let's start at the white house right now. cnn's kaitlan collins there is. caitlin, i assumed i thought this last night, yesterday afternoon, after listening to john kelly, i assumed the white house thought john kelly's word would be the last one last night but clearly it was not. >> yeah. they certainly did, because they thought john kelly was the most qualified person to come out and answer questions about the situation, kate, but we're clearly seeing this public feud between the white house and this congresswoman continue to intensify with the president tweeting about it last night saying the fake news is going crazy with whacky congresswoman wilson who is secretly on a very personal call and gave a total lie on content. this all got started because the congresswoman wilson who is a friend of the family of sergeant
la david johnson, who was killed during the ambush in niger, was in the car when the president called his widow, myy shah johnson, and it was on speaker phone. she criticized the president for what he said to her, something along the lines of he knew what he side up for and the president disputed he said that. she had fabricated it and he had not said what congresswoman wilson accused him of saying. as chief of staff john kelly came out to this press briefing at the white house yesterday, this very gripping, emotional briefing with reporters, he essentially confirmed parts of that account, but sought to defend what the president had meant because kelly said that when joseph dunford told him about his son robert dying in afghanistan, he had said something along the same lines. but clearly it was not interpreted that way by the johnson family. and then during that briefing john kelly delivered a sooerg criticism of this congresswoman saying she was selfish and publicity seeking and recalled
an event from 2015 at the dedication of an fbi building in miami when he said that she was trying to take the political credit for getting the funding for that building. congresswoman wilson put out a statement last night saying she wasn't going to comment any further on this issue, she was going to let the focus be on this grieving family here but she was on cnn this morning disputing what john kelly had said about her regarding the fbi incident, but what's clear here, kate, the tragedy of the four soldiers who lost their lives is being completely overshadowed by this fight between the white house and this congresswoman. >> and it is everyone's job to try to make that not happen, but it's hard to have those two things happening at the same time. thank you so much. we'll see what comes from the white house, if anything more on this, today. i'm joined right now to discuss this as caitlin laid it out
well, retired rear admiral john kirby spokesman to the pentagon and state department under president obama, david chalian is here and political reporter nia mallika henderson. john you've spoken to this a bit but as i've been thinking about kind of the last 24 hours and the last seven days -- five days if you will, can't all of these things be true about where things ended up? that the president intended to console and had the best of intentions, that the family did feel disrespected, though by his words, that general kelly is uniquely positioned to speaks to the grief of this horrible loss, but he also entered a political discussion because he is the chief of staff to a politician now? >> yes, yes, yes, and yes, kate. it got all those things are true as we sit here today. what's also true is we have, as caitlin rightly pointed out, three other families going through unspeakable grief, two families dealing with wounded
troops from the raid and a pentagon trying to figure out how it happened and how to prevent it from happening again. that's where our focus needs to be, on two things, one taking care of those families of those fallen and those wounded as well as the thousands more that we have -- we now have in our society as a result of the two wars in iraq and afghanistan and number two, getting to the bottom of this ambush and trying to figure out what's going on. we have as the secretary mattis said yesterday a thousand troops in west africa alone doing counter terrorism missions and this is a combat and command that has been historically underresourced. we need to put all this behind us and have a larger conversation about what we're doing to fight isis and al qaeda affiliates in that part of the world. >> the white house thought this was going to be put behind everyone, with what john kelly said yesterday, but then the president continuing it with this tweet last night saying that -- caitlin read it, but i can read it that the fake news
is going crazy with whacky congresswoman wilson secretly on a personal call and gave a total lie of the content. everyone seems to agree that none of this, that none of this is good where it has gone, if i can say it that way. not good for gold star families and not good for the country. does the president think this is good for him in some way? >> i mean, it's certainly a comfortable place for him to be. it's a real familiar place for him to be going after this congresswoman, representative wilson, in the way that he is going after her, calling her whacky, a liar. we've seen this from the president before. i think it was in some ways surprising for a lot of people to see chief of staff kelly yesterday go in such a personal way as well. he sounded in a lot of ways xwivg her sort of a nickname too, calling her an empty barrel twice. i think in some ways that speech didn't provide the kind of
closure that the white house probably hoped for from kelly because essentially a fourth of that speech was aimed at representative wilson. i think the first part of it, obviously, was very eloquent and personal, but then he launched into a personal attack against this congresswoman and i think that's why you got this cycle and you had the president wanting to go after her again. it's also, it might be at some point that kelly wasn't accurate in some ways in terms of his framing of the congresswoman trying to say she was disrespecting people at that fbi dedication when, in fact, it seems like she was part of the legislation that went to work naming that building after those fallen agents. so, you know, a lot of, you know, kind of ongoing discussion of this from the white house and you imagine, you know, does the president who watches cable news, he watched the coverage, i'm sure, of not only kelly giving that very moving speech
yesterday, but watching the coverage afterwards and some people were critical of what kelly said and wait that he went after the congresswoman. >> david, as we end the week, i think it's important to remember how we started, this started with a simple and good question coming from our own sara murray, just because i want to remind folks of where this began, this what is sara murray asked the president at that conference. why haven't we heard anything from you so far about the soldiers killed in niger and what do you have to say about that. what does -- what does it say in how this week has played out? >> i'm glad you read that question. because you will note in that question, there is nothing in that question about calling families or making condolence calls. it was about why haven't you spoken to the american people about the attack, right. that was sara murray's question. here's the reality of this week, kate. i don't think anyone involved this week, congresswoman wilson,
president trump, chief of staff kelly, entirely followed the better angels of their nature, right. i think everyone was a little suspect of everything. president trump suspect of the press asking a question, congresswoman wilson suspect of president trump's intentions, john kelly, suspect of the congresswoman and the president. the whole thing, nobody was sort of just riding the better angels among them about how to sort of deal with this and so what happened was, is that mix overtook something that it never belonged in, having said that, donald trump is the commander in chief. there is an extra burden that comes with that. and i just think that in his way that he chose to answer sara murray's question in the rose garden, all of a sudden comparing himself to past presidents and trying to portray the way in which he goes about calling families is more extensive than what others have done, by letters, and phone calls, he wanted to immediately get into a political realm. then the next day, suggesting
that people and reporters ask john kelly if barack obama ever called him when he experienced this horrific loss in his life of his son. and then again, we have john kelly going after the congresswoman. we have president trump tweeting here last night in a factually inaccurate way about -- to keep this going. this in each one of those instances, there was a choice made on behalf of the administration and the president, to delve into the political. and to me, so much of this could have been avoided if the president made a different choice. >> i have the moment and i want to play it for you because john, you know, general john kelly well. the moment when john kelly, when he was speaking at the podium, i think we can divide it into almost like two statements, right, the statement about the loss of a loved one -- the loss of a soldier which he uniquely
knows and when it entered the political rel frm the podium. when john kelly was talking about his son. >> typically the only phone calls a family receives are the most important phone calls they can imagine that is from their buddies. in my case, after my son was killed his friends were calling us from afghanistan. telling us what a great guy he was. those are the only phone calls that really matter. and yeah, the letters count to a degree, but there's not much that really can take the edge off what a family member is going through. >> and i just want to end our discussion there, because it kind of is exactly what you said, david, these are choices that were made in every step of the way in what they have done. you know john kelly. what did it take for him to come out and talk about that? >> i can't imagine the courage he had to summon to go to the podium and talk about his family, grief and son that way.
because in all the time i worked with him, he never wanted to talk about it, not because he didn't love and honor his son and cherish the time he had with his son, but because he didn't want to hold his grief and his family's loss up any higher than anybody else's family's loss. he was completely cognizant of the fact that other families were going through very similar pain and grief and he always wanted to respect that. i asked him once to write a note to my son shipping off to navy boot camp and it's a personal note, i won't say everything in there, but he spoke eloquently to my own son about service and sacrifice and doing something larger than yourself and giving back to the country and that's what john kelly i think really believes that he's doing and i think that, you know, for him to go to the podium yesterday, for him that was a real act of courage. >> there are things still sacred. i will not allow it to be taken away and where this discussion has gone and the loss of john kelly and so many families have suffered with their sons and
daughters and house bands and -- husbands and wives in service that can't be lost. john, nia, david, thanks for that. we could be hearing very soon from defense secretary james mattis on the niger ambush moments from now when he welcomes his french counterpart to the pentagon. some very important headlines and made very important comments yesterday. let's see what he has to say about this today. plus, they didn't say his name, but there is no -- there is little doubt who they were talking about. two former presidents taking aim at president trump and his world view. >> if you have to win a campaign by dividing people, you're not going to be able to govern them. you won't be able to unit them later if that's how you start. you wouldn't do only half
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to meet with senator john mccain, the chairman of the senate armed services committee on capitol hill, he will be meeting with him today. of course this comes in light of john mccain raising many questions and also voicing his frustration that he has not been able to get the answers that he believes is deserved for -- on capitol hill about what happened in niger that left four service members dead. james mattis heading to capitol hill to sit down with john mccain today. also new this morning, fbi investigators are also now on the ground in niger, joining the military, to find out exactly what happened in that deadly ambush of u.s. soldiers. here is the defense secretary just yesterday speaking for the first time about the attack. >> we in the department of defense would like to know what we're talking about before we talk and so we do not have all the accurate information yet. we will release it as rapidly as we get it because we are very proud and as you know we
investigate any time we have our troops killed, whether it be in training accidents or combat. i don't care if it's in a car accident. in d.o.d. we investigate the circumstances surrounding and see how we can address the very questions you brought up, about what can we do in the future. >> and now john mccain, as i mentioned, could be getting some of those answers to those questions as james mattis is heading to the hill. let me bring in right now democratic congressman mike quickly, a member of the house. thanks for coming in. >> good morning. >> good morning. the fbi involved in the niger investigation. what is the biggest question in your mind with regard to this ambush? >> what was the intel information offered to the troops before they hit the ground, were there communication issues, is it true that one of the sergeants was separated from the rest. clearly we have more questions than answers. we've only got a cur sorry
briefing giving the time of the intel committee staffers. we anticipate a fuller briefing shortly from my committee, the intel committee, and i'm sure armed services. >> do you know when that will be happening? james mattis the defense secretary is going to sit down with john mccain today. when do you think you will all be fully briefed even in the classified setting? >> you know, i suspect it will probably be in the coming week when we're back in washington, d.c. i suspect still it will be cur sorry because this investigation will take some time and there will be multiple investigations within the department of defense, as there are in all such instances, such as the yemen raid, which unfortunately was a tragedy of equal proportions. so i suspect we'll get a curse sorry briefing to some extent next week, and continued briefings as d.o.d. learns more and hopefully sharing this
information with the other committees that have responsibility. >> do you think in any way d.o.d. has been -- i don't know of a better way of saying it, holding out. john mccain was frustrated that he hasn't gotten the information he thinks he's deserved already. >> i think this administration as a whole has been opaque at best on anything. clearly the president of the united states doesn't like to take responsibility for anything that goes wrong. i can't think of a single time in which he said this was my fault, my responsibility. we think of president kennedy after the bay of pigs, highly different story than this president after the yemen raid, in which he publicly blamed the generals. look, this is going to get more complicated. we have known for some time of the likely demise on the battlefield in iraq and syria, of isis. but we also recognize that it's going to have its ramifications elsewhere. we're going to see returning
fighters going across the world in terrorist acts. probably going to see insurgency acts like we just saw. this is an insurgency group likely formed because of the battlefield losses in iraq and syria. we will have to be prepared for that. do we have the information we need, do we have a strategy in place to fully meet this challenge. >> well, there are clearly so many answers still being sought there. what do you make of how this has devolved this week from a question about the president's thoughts on the niger attack at a press conference monday to now name calling between the president and his chief of staff and a democratic member of congress? >> yeah. it is a second tragedy for those families who have lost their members. it should never have happened this way. the fact of the matter is, when something like this happens, immediately, the house and senate need to be informed. the american public needs to know exactly what took place to the extent we can tell them, and
those that were lost need to be comforted and offered assistance. the second tragedy for these families is, they are dragged through this horrible, embarrassing mess that i suspect just poured salt on terrible wounds they're already suffering. >> i have to tell you -- >> congressman -- >> if the president -- >> i don't see this president, other than being -- >> if the president made this political, congressman, does congresswoman wilson deserve criticism as well for making it political and continuing it as well? >> look, i don't want to reference john kelly because of his loss and i wasn't part of the conversation with the congresswoman, so if you're asking me who do i believe in this matter, it's probably the family that was part of that conversation and agrees with the congresswoman. so if you're asking me how to do this on a nonpartisan basis, i would suggest that we should
probably all trust the grieving families and their account of what took place which would agree with the congresswoman. let me just say this, this is a president that cannot sympathize or empathize with those who have suffered. and as a result, perhaps what they should do is in what they try to tell his staff, tries to tell him when he talks to grieving families, is let's reference the president who seemed to know how to do this, quoting perhaps president lincoln's letter, the vixby letter, in which he says i pray that our heavenly father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement and leave you only the cherished memory of the love and loss in solemn pride that must have laid so costly a sacrifice po sacrifice upon the altar of freedom. if he can't do at least reference a president who could. >> congressman, thank you so much for coming on. i have many questions, especially on where the russia investigation goes when you return to capitol hill, but
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on capitol hill at least one democratic senator is now threatening to hold up the confirmations of u.s. attorney nominees. this after reports of president trump took the rare step of personally interviewing two candidates for posts as u.s. attorney and it's not just who they are or their posts but also what jurisdiction they could be covering. they could be nominated to cover. let me bring in cnn crime and justice reporter shimon prokupecz. shimon, lay this out. this is pretty fascinating. >> it's actually pretty rare for a sitting u.s. president to do this and we're told these are two lawyers with connections to people very close to the president. this is marc kasowitz, his
personal attorney, they have connections, one of them has a connection to him and the other attorney who has interviewed with the president has a connection to rudy giuliani the former new york mayor and close adviser to the president. we're told that two attorneys now who are in private practice are jeff berman, who works with the giuliani law firm and ed mcnally who is a partner at the marc kasowitz firm, they met with the president for this position. it's pretty rare and rarely done and so its has created -- it has raised some concern among people on the hill that the president would meet with potential u.s. attorney candidates so early in the process and so one senator in particular as you know, senator blumenthal who sits on the judiciary committee calls it alarming. >> a city with probably the most connections to the president to
say the least. let's see where this goes. thank you for laying it out. appreciate it. let's discuss this right now with alberto gonzales former attorney general under president george w. bush. he is dean of belmont university's college of law and the author of a new book "true faith and allegiance a story of service and sacrifice had war and peace." mr. attorney general, great to see you, thank you for coming in. >> good to be with you. >> so shimon laid it out, but the president meeting with two u.s. attorney candidates, not just any two but two that could cover manhattan and brooklyn, does that raise alarms in your mind? >> it's unusual. it would have been unusual in the bush administration. i never brought in a u.s. attorney candidate. i didn't bring in a judicial candidate to meet with the president, quite frankly, other than, of course, the supreme court candidate. now, as to whether or not it's appropriate or inappropriate with respect to u.s. attorney candidates as a general matter, the president is head of the executive branch. these are appointees within the executive branch.
on its face nothing inappropriate about it but it has raised questions because it is unusual. i'm somewhat releevd by the fact that i understand the white house counsel was present in the meetings which is important for the white house counsel to make sure the president understand what is appropriate and what is not appropriate in these discussions. i might also add that, you know, i know ed mcnally, one of the people mentioned in the story, ed used to work for me when i worked in the white house, and i have total confidence in ed's integrity. the question here is whether or not by these meetings, has the president created a situation where the impartiality of these two men is somehow eninn doubt to the extent that there is an investigation that must be undertaken and a prosecution must be undertaken in new york city. >> what do you think? even if with the best intentions, do you think that these candidates are now tainted? >> i think that it certainly -- the test at the department of justice is whether or not under
the circumstances a reasonable person with knowledge of the facts would have questions about the impartiality. i think one could argue that yes, i have questions about the impartiality of a possible investigation involving the president or the president's family. and so i think that's the danger of these kinds of meetings. but as to whether or not there is, in fact, impartiality, that's -- or not, that's a question that will have to be examined. >> you don't recall president bush having a personal interview like this, if he wanted to what would you have advised. >> i would want to be in the meeting and i'm sure i would have been in the meeting and caution him that he should not have any kind of discussion whatsoever about a potential prosecution or investigation. i think it may be appropriate to say with respect to policy, for example, if you were interviewing a u.s. attorney for an arizona position, border enforcement is important for me
and should be a priority for you, that would be perfectly appropriate. to single out a potential person or set of facts, that may be subject to investigation by that u.s. attorney, i think raises some alarm bells. >> the fact that you said right off the top that wouldn't have happened with george w. bush, there's clearly a reason why. >> well listen, you never want to put the president in a situation where those kinds of questions that we're talking about now are being raised. more importantly you don't want to put the potential u.s. attorney in the position where he might have to recuse himself from an investigation that may be important for that district. >> can i ask you, running out of time, your former boss, a man we were talking about, george w. bush, made a rare and forceful speech yesterday here in new york city, speaking out against the divisive state of politics today. here's just a bit of what he said. >> we've seen nationalism distort distorted into nativism, bigotry
seems embolden our policies seem to conspiracy theories and our discourse degraded by casual cruelty. >> he didn't mention president trump by name, of course, but didn't seem to leave much doubt who he was talking about. what did you think of his remarks? >> i was proud of those remarks frankly and very consistent with the person, the man, that i worked with for so many years down in texas and then, of course, in the white house and so i think his fundamentally reflects his vision of america. he's proud of america, and we all understand that we're undergoing challenges today but nonetheless still remain the greatest country in the face of the earth and the president was trying to remind everyone of that fact and remind everyone of what makes us unique and special in the world. >> alberto gonzales, thank you so much. >> thanks for having me, kate. >> coming up for us, not just president bush and former president obama. it's not just president bush that we're talking about that is speaking out against the
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it's something you rarely see, sort of like an eclipse but i guess the political kind. all five living former presidents will take part in a benefit concert for hurricane victims this weekend taking place at texas a&m university. former presidents obama, clinton, carter and both bushes will be there, but the current president he will not. and even if he were, after yesterday, it could get a little awkward especially after these hits from two of the former presidents just yesterday. >> our young people need positive role models. bullying and prejudice in our public life sets a national
tone. provides permission for cruelty and bigotry and compromises the moral education of children. the only way to pass along civic values is to first live up to them. >> if you have to win a campaign by dividing people, you're not going to be able to govern them. you won't be able to unite them later if that's how you start. >> joining me right now, cnn political commentator and former special assistant to bush 43 scott jennings and former obama speechwriter david lynn. great to see you. david, let me give you more of an intro because you're that good wrote a book about his experience in the white house and now head writer and producer at funny or die. let's get to the fun. scott, first to you, what did you make of bush's speech? did it surprise you? >> i wasn't surprised. i mean this is the same decent public service oriented george w. bush that we knew while he
was president and while he was running for president and i think it was very consistent with the world view that he always portrayed. i do find it interesting today, we have a lot of democrats and people on the left side of the spectrum praising george w. bush today. i don't remember it quite so kumbaya especially in the second term of the bush administration but i'm glad to see folks are coming around. >> david, with president obama far less of a surprise, obviously, the tone he took last night, but did he hit the right tone? didn't he hit the similar theme throughout the election and that failed? >> well, i think that president obama is a reminder and president bush is speaking as well, was a reminder of a different time in politics. i mean nobody called anyone a moron, no one used a demeaning nickname but they were both very clear in saying that this is not just a matter of republican or democrat. what donald trump -- and not just trump, but trumpism stands for is a real threat to the
country and we need to take it seriously. so i think that it's similar to things that president obama was saying on the campaign, but it's also been shaped by events since then. i mean it's not -- a lot of the things on the campaign that he warned about were we to elect donald trump have happened. hopefully voters will remember that as well and i think they will. >> does this speak of things to come? do you think we will hear more from president bush about this? >> no, i don't think president bush is one to go out and give speech after speech after interview after tweet. he doesn't tweet, for instance, and so i think he made -- >> i wish he did. i would like to read them. >> talking about them -- oh, i mean it would be fascinating, but i think he just -- i think he said what he had to say and i also think he speaks through the bush center, his presidential center, i think is sort of a monument to a lot of the values he talked about in his remarks yesterday and people can go visit that. i suspect you're going to hear more from obama, president obama, politically than you are from president bush who has
largely stayed out of politics since he left office. >> probably a smart guess. david, if you are going to go there, do you wish that both of these men would just call the president out by name? like if you're going to walk up to the line, why not call him out by name? >> well, i think that this is the beginning of structuring an argument -- in my book i talk about what speech writers call a permission structure, letting voters decide to make a specific choice, and this is an argument not just to democrats but to republicans as well, to say, you may not agree with most democratic policies but this is about something that's bigger than party. it's notable that president obama made these comments in virginia where ed gillespie is running a very divisive campaign that is now based on not so subtle racial attacks and racial ads and not long ago republicans nominated roy moore in alabama. what we're seeing is donald trump infecting his entire political party. the trumpism threatens to become a philosophy that dominates one
half of our political discourse and that's the bigger threat. it's not just calling out trump. it's the ideas and the mode of rhetoric that he represents. >> i want to make a quick turn. i know scott, you disagree with the assessment of ed gillespie. we will leave it there. i want to talk about something else that was -- another speech last night. you've written, david, many a joke speeches as well for president trump. those white house correspondent dinner speeches i was in the crowd and saw so many of. try these lines on for size, paul ryan at a charity dinner. listen. >> i want to promise you, though, because i've heard a few few stories about how the dinner went last year, i want to put your minds at ease you can relax about my remarks. i know last year that donald trump offended some people. i know his comments, according to critics, went too far. some said it was unbecoming of a public figure. and they said that his comments were offensive.
well, thank god he's learned his lesson. every morning i wake up in my office and i scroll twitter to see which tweets i will have to pretend i did not see later on. >> i mean, that's what it's about, a little truth, little fiction, home run, david? >> well, i would say that's a lot of truth and it's a little bit strange because it is paul ryan joking about the fact that he's ignoring all of the things that both president obama and president bush were talking about. and so he's basically saying, you know, hey, i'm part of the problem, isn't that funny. i suppose some people find that funny. i think it hits a little too close to home for me personally. better than last year when donald trump did get booed. >> scott, your quick assessment of ryan. >> i thought pooeshg ryspeaker funny and the venue called for a funny speech and good job, pooeshg ryan. >> may none of us be the subject of one of those speeches. let's say that. thank you so much. coming up for us, we will
hear from -- we could very well hear from defense secretary james mattis live from the pentagon. will he comment -- will we hear from him again on the deadly ambush of u.s. soldiers in niger. we will be listening in to see and bring you his comments live. let's meet this week's cnn hero. she made it her life mission to boost literacy for children living below the poverty line in california. watch this. >> for a child the library can be a magical place. >> i'm officially the most awesome girl in the world. >> it can transform you academically, but it can also nurture you emotionally. what people don't realize is that school libraries are sometimes not funded at all. we provide libraries for under served communities and schools. our whole goal is to spread literacy and the benefits of literacy. >> learn more about rebecca and
other cnn heros, go to cnn heros.com. we'll be right back. cnn heros is brought to you by geico. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance. visit geico.com for a free rate quote and by consumer cellular. where low rates and award-winning service are just the beginning. you interfering imbecile! give us one good reason we shouldn't vanquish you to another dimension! ok, guys, hear me out. switching to geico could save you... hundreds on car insurance. huh, he does make a point... i do like to save money... catch you on the flip, suckas! geico. because saving fifteen percent or more on car insurance is always a great answer.
smaller portion sizes, clear calorie labels, and reminders to think balance. because we know mom wants what's best. more beverage choices, smaller portions, less sugar. balanceus.org coming up this weekend, the next "parts unknown." anthony bourdain this week takes you to pittsburgh. >> pittsburgh is a city of neighborhoods, each with its own rights and rituals. a patchwork of cultures that took shape over a century ago. back then the city was a beacon
of hope and possibility for people from all over the world offering the promise of work, prosperity and new life. pittsburgh could have been another company town gone to beautiful ruin, but something happened. the city started to pop up on lists of the most livable places in america. >> and earlier i talked to bourdain about this week's episode. great to see you. >> great to see you. >> so this one is about pittsburgh. a city that i love. and i saw from the episode you fell in love with too. >> me too. >> you say in the episode it's a city in transition. what is the food of pittsburgh tell you where it's headed? >> well, often the sort of the agents of change or at least the first sign that a city is fundamentally changing is the arrival of hot restaurants with a national profile, hipster chefs, farm-to-table and that's very true with pittsburgh.
about 10, 15 years ago, the cuisine, the restaurant scene started to change and along with that the city started to come back in a way that you could see as either positive or negative depending on your point of view. >> and that's an interesting part about this episode is the food and -- the food kind of led it, right? these people are coming in -- >> it's a cultural change. it sends a message along with the hipster barista that there's a clientele for that, along come the artists, entrepreneurs, the techies. >> people are split on that, i thought it was fascinating. >> it's a city proud of working class roots, it was the central of industrial america in many ways, it was steel city. and as manufacturing in the steel industry vaporized over time, they hit some really, really tough times. but they're still very proud of
that ethic, that self-image as, you know, hard working people who came from all over the world to, you know, work really hard and live the american dream. that pittsburgh to a great extent doesn't exist anymore and it's becoming like so many other cities in transition, you know, the new industries are, you know, tech, intellectual property and the service industry. >> so what does professional wrestling have to do with it? i love this part of the episode. >> well, i thought it was interesting. in western pennsylvania in particular there's a very strong sort of a local/regional, you know, this ain't the wwe. >> right. >> this is very enthusiastic practitioners and very enthusiastic crowds. and, you know, it's a glimpse of -- you know, i'm sentimental about the old pittsburgh and working class america and those kinds of aspirations, that kind of entertainment. you know, demolition derby as well. >> that's right.
>> i'm a dollar and a dream, i'm sentimental about that. >> so you say it, pittsburgh is like so many cities, the boom in the industry, the bust in the city that's left behind when the industry fails and the people left behind. but you ask in the episode and it stuck with me, you ask what went right here in pittsburgh. did you find an answer? >> well, i think it still held onto its look, its dreams. there are still people there who pride themselves on their roots, on who toughed it out, who could have and probably should have left as so many young people did during the really hard times but were determined to stay there and either wait it out or build something new. >> another fantastic look at an amazing american city. great to see you. thanks for bringing it to us. >> thank you. >> that is this weekend. but still ahead for us, soon, defense secretary james mattis is welcoming his french counterpart to the pentagon. with so many questions still out there about the deadly attack in
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welcome to "inside politics," i'm john king. thank you for sharing your day with us. a big presidential promise has momentum today. senate passes a budget blueprint that allows a giant tax cut, democrats say it helps the rich and explodes the deficits. republicans say it will create jobs and is long overdue. >> so the first action in 31 years since president reagan's reforms in 1986 that begins very quickly. >> plus, the fbi now helping investigate that isis ambush that left four u.s. servicemen dead. the president's chief of staff, a retired general whose son