tv Washington Journal Christopher Ruddy Discusses the Trump Presidency CSPAN June 13, 2017 8:01am-8:33am EDT
benjamin franklin was the conduit for which this information flowed. made its way in the articles of confederation and in the constitution. >> watch sunday night at 9:00 eastern on c-span 2 book tv. >> c-span where history unfolds daily. in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies. it's brought to you today by your cable or satellite provider. >> "washington journal" continues. host: newsmax ceo chris ruddy is back after making headlines. telling pbs that you believe president is considering firing
special counsel robert mueller. what do you base that belief on? guest: i'm a journalist in addition to running newsmax. i have some good sources in the administration. i think it's an accurate statement. i have not spoken to the president about the matter. i believe it's an accurate statement. it's really not different from what the president's own attorney said this past sunday. where he said the president is leaving open the option to terminate the special counsel. host: you're a friend of the president. you're at the white house yesterday? guest: correct. host: what did you talk about? guest: i didn't deal with president. i met with other white house officials yesterday. i usually don't discuss conversations i do speak to the president from time to time. unless there's some go ahead from him to reveal something publicly. i don't put that out there.
host: did you offer any advice when it comes to special counsel? what advice did you give? guest: the advice i give is the same advice i give on publicly. i thought it was a mistake to fire the special counsel. i've been saying that for the past couple of weeks. this issue has been out there for a while. i think the president himself tweeted a few weeks back, he still have the right to terminate. he was reserving that right. he certainly has a legitimate case to terminate special counsel robert mueller. always remember, john, there's no underlying crime that's been committed. there's no evidence of a crime. there's not even a serious allegations that a crime committed that has been committed. there's nothing. that's against the president or anyone else in his
administration. why on that basis just because there's smoke, there's some wild claims on certain cable networks being made. why would you appoint special counsel to begin with. the whole thing sounds odd. i can understand the frustration the president and senior officials the white house has. that this thing is being dragged out i think for political purposes. he calls it a political witch hunt. i'm a person that thinks that the press should do a job of being fair. i was listening to one of your callers i was in the green room here. talking about president trump bringing dictatorship. the press has been so negative to the president, they are creating hysteria among the public. i think it's perfect legitimate for you and me and rest of the press to criticize the president when it's appropriate. but to say things that are completely untrue, i think it's
damaging. host: bring it back to robert mueller. newt gingrich tweeting that he doesn't think robert mueller will be fair in his investigation. do you agree with that? guest: i don't know mueller personally. i think he was a very good director of the fbi. i think he has a history of being fair. let's run through some of the issues here. wasn't -- one is a day or two before he was named special counsel, robert mueller met with the president. the president and him had a conversation about mueller being the next fbi director. isn't it odd that you would meet with someone that would not reveal they're under consideration to be the counsel and they maybe investigating you. they're having a private conversation about your most intimate and candid thoughts about the bureau and the investigation. we don't know what was discussed in that meeting. it seems ethically challenged
for a lawyer to do something like that. i'm just little shocked that mueller, i reported that yesterday on pbs show, they had this meeting and the trump was seriously considering it. i'm shocked that mueller took the job after he had that meeting. he was being a candidate. the second thing is, the special counsel's exist any time one of his appointed, they typically go well beyond their initial jurisdiction. i think there's an effort for them to justify the huge amount of expense and time they put in these investigations. they end up trying to indict the infamous ham sandwich at the end of the day. we see this time and again. i was there in the 1990's when i was critical of the clintons. i believe journalist like me overhyped. there was too much political hype. there was some legitimate concerns and questions, i think
at the end of the day the special counsel came in, there was no significant results. there was lots of indictments and lot of legal issues raised. host: this focus on robert mueller. your comments making the front page of the "new york times." do you think it makes jeff sessions testimony any harder today? does it impact what we're going to be hearing? guest: nice to know i'm on the cover of the "new york times." thank you for pointing that out. i didn't know that. i think jeff sessions coming before congress is part of the whole administration's approach to this. which has been from the very very beginning, we have nothing to hide. this investigation has been going on six months into the president's campaign activities with russia. everybody keeps saying there's no evidence or collusion. there's no evidence of obstruction. yet, everybody keeps on suggesting there's something they're hiding. if you go look through -- white
house has been very cooperative with the senate and house committees. they could have tried to pressure them to be closed down or slow them down because republicans control them. there has been none of that. sessions testimony tomorrow is part of the administration which has been very forthcoming. the president has been very forthcoming. i think there's not going to be many surprises here. host: chris ruddy is ceo of newsmax and also friends of the president. guest: i like to say i'm a friend. i don't think i need to go more than that. i support the president. even though sometimes as a journalist i criticize him. i've known the man for 20 years. i've known him for well for the past 10 years. i think he's an incredible guy that has done not only remarkable things in his career this is a guy first six months office reset the needle for a president like no other
president in history. nobody is talking about any of these achievements. host: for folks who don't know what newsmax is. what is it and who's your audience? guest: they can go to newsmax online where they can download our free app from their android or iphone store. newsmax is a multimedia web media publishing and broadcast company. we reach about 50 million people online. our total reach according to com score. we have many different platforms. people stein up for e-mail alerts. we have over six million individual subscriptions. our newsmax tv channel is on verizon fios 20 cable system. we had bill o'reilly on last week. we expect to be in 35 million homes by this summer. the channel is growing. what we try to do, we don't
advocate the truth. we're in search of the truth. we try to get both sides. you'll see very fair balanced approach to the news. we let the american people decide. much like you guys do here at c-span. host: let's let the american people talk to you. rich is up first, marion, ohio line for republicans. caller: interesting discussions. it's very interesting how we decide to have witch hunts on what's russia is up to. for the last 50 years, we've all known that russia trying to get into different situations where they can actually have old programs about -- we had to deal with that. suddenly, last four years, we've become aware of it. because it's convenient for them, they're into it. the other part is, we're tiring
ourselves out from other things. the economy and that. we are not being fair when obama said in the election, with russia, confidential solution -- collusion. we could talk about this better and we can do more for you after the election. i'm on -- on a hot mic. nothing came of it. it's amazing. it's wasting our time when we should be dealing with this economy. host: thanks for the call. guest: there's to question that the russians tried to interfere in the u.s. elections. even the president has said that's true. i actually think it's backfiring on them. i think hillary outperformed obama in most states. if you look at the election results, 20 points better than obama did in california a blue state and red state like texas. she cut the republican lead
trump's lead by half over what romney did in that state. hillary's problem was, in states like ohio, michigan, wisconsin pennsylvania, she didn't show up. her campaign didn't do a good job there. if the russian effect had helped trump, you would have seen it all across the country. his performance in those states would have been higher. i don't think it really matters at the end of the day. i do think it was bizarre that the fbi director, comey issued a press conference in june where he said there was not going to be indictment against hillary clinton, which the fbi never does. that was a violation of fbi protocol. supposed to let the justice department handle that. he two weeks before the election reopens the investigation. has another statement about it. it's a violation of justice department rules to get involved in the election of an investigation. the democrats were extremely
angry at that time. it may have had an impact on the election. then, for him to meet with the president and write memos after meetings with the president like he was creating a file against the president. seems to be very strange. i think when you look at the picture, the president was justified. i think he should have fired comey upon taking the oath of office earlier in january. i'm not sure the timing of when it happened. this time was good idea. i think the president's instinct about firing comey was generally a good one. host: go to john in michigan. line for democrats. go ahead. caller: i have a comment to make and i haven't heard previous callers address this issue. when you have 17 independent intelligence agencies saying that the russians colluded in our election.
that in itself is enough for an investigation. other issue is, why is it paul manafort carter page and general flynn all meeting with the russians. they weren't meeting with allies, united kingdom. i like to hear mr. ruddy's comments on that. guest: i will answer your question. i think that all of these intelligence agencies, you didn't need intelligence agencies, the russians were open they were involved and they were trying to influence the election with fake news and all of this other stuff. the question is is there any evidence that the trump campaign work order colluded with the russians. people have suggested that might have happened. but there's no evidence. there's no evidence from those 17 intelligence agencies. we have repeatedly gone before
congress, both republicans and democrats and said there's no evidence. we know that for example, james clapper who was the director of national intelligence, you look at all the agencies, he's the highest guy on the pole he said on meet the press after he left the job when donald trump was becoming president he said we found no evidence or collusion. why would you have a further investigation if there's no evidence? just because somebody makes a suggestion, i think that merkel got involved in the electronic. she really liked hillary. i'm shocked the intelligence agencies are not investigating. we need a special counsel to determine if merkel got involved in this election. you look at me like you're looking at me now. is this guy crazy. i think that's how the president -- i don't want to speak on his
behalf. any normal person, i think people in the white house look at this and saying, why are we going through this? host: christina line for independents. oakland, michigan. good morning. caller: good morning. this is mr. ruddy who is a media person and is protrump. i'm not sure that call into thing. i love to the horse's mouth. i watch all kinds of hearings and c-span constantly. i don't listen to pundits. i don't listen to the news. i listen to mr. trump and all he has said for years. that was on him. i listen to so much on what mr. trump said. that's where i form my opinion. it's not on the media.
when you talk about mr. trump saying yeah, russia was trying to do this. i heard mr. trump say, it could have been some 400-pound kid in a basement. i have never him say, i heard him say a lot, i listen to him every time he tweets. that's where i form my opinion. host: thanks for the call. guest: i'm really glad that christina is making her own judgment. i would ask her to consider the following. we hear a lot of negative things about donald trump all the time. you hear the press every night talking about how he has made jobs a priority if this country like no other president? i'm shocked by the impact he's had just by the bully pulpit. in a positive way i'm shocked. every boardroom in this country now considers, we outsourcing jobs, might the president attack us on twitter. is this a good thing for us. host: thinking twice?
guest: thinking twice, he's made that. look what he's done. he's getting nato increase their spending. american kids and families go bankrupt putting their kids in college. if you're a german student, the government pays for your college constitution -- tuition. donald trump said south germans why you pay such a small percentage of your economy. if they were paying the same percentage that we americans pay, they would be paying -- they would not have the money for college for their kids. if america paid the same percentage that the germans were paying for their security, we would have over a trillion dollars in extra spending. we would be able to pay for every kid's college in america and private colleges is public colleges. we are paying for the security burden of nato countries. donald trump goes over to nato said hey folks, the game is over. i'm not going to be paying so you can send your kids free to college while american kids are going bankrupt. when i watched the morning shows, christina all they're
saying is nato hated trump, they dislike him. he was mean in and that. i like he's over there mean and shaking things up. i think it's good. whatever you think about donald trump, i know some people think he says things. you cannot question that this guy loves america. i think everything he's been doing as president is an effort to improve the standing of this country to improve its economic condition and really make the american dream alive again. i think this is the guy that can do it. host: christina concerned about the stake news. ceo of multiplatform news organization. what is your policy specifically on when you can use unnamed sources and stories? guest: we can use unnamed sources like any other media organization. as a news organization, we tend to like things on the record. if we feel that it's a very credible source and confirm we'll go with it. i think fake news is not about
using unnamed sources. host: there's unnamed sources are one of the big concerns that callers call when they talk about sighting fake news and stories they don't trust. guest: it's very important that a free press exist. i don't think there's anything wrong with unnamed sources. i think each news organization should develop its own credibility on those issues. we have a good track record. i think the "new york times," i disagree, i think they're editorial pages seep over into their news pages all the time. i also think they're credible quoting unnamed sources, i generally think it's true. i think they have some credibility. my issue is that fake news exist. it's always existed in this country. it's up to intelligent, informed american public to make decisions. not what's fair or right. we see from your caller, this
country is filled with people that are smart and they don't buy the party line whether the media giving it or political party. host: about ten minutes left with chris ruddy before you have to continues your work here in d.c. bob waiting in texas, line for republicans. caller: good morning mr. ruddy. i'm doing fine. doing great. i wanted to talk about a couple of things real quick. number one, people out here in flyover country are so sick and tired of this ghost of an investigation regarding russia. it happened on obama's watch. i can remember when mitt romney in 2012 brought up the problems with russia. he was laughed and snickered at by eeverybody in the media. i don't know -- we've had it. we've had it. i don't know where the disconnect is between the media.
people like me joe scarborough they couldn't fly over the country with a map. they better wake up. we go to c-span because we see the unvarnished truth. i don't have any clown at the "new york times," trying to tell -- intrigue to interpret what i saw. you guys have a good morning. guest: i like bob. bob, you're my heart and soul the public should be informed. i like mika and joe i been on their show. caller: we don't. guest: i find their show entertaining. they accuse the president of being obsessed. they're guilty of it. they're obsessed with him and they're constantly attacking him. they don't really show any other side. just remember i was talking with christina earlier she's saying, i hear president trump and i've
made an opinion of him. yeah your opinion is shaped by all these people constantly giving the negative side. bob makes a really good point. he's in flyover territory. you know that the president one poll was out that showed he would do better in ohio if he ran again. host: which poll was that? guest: i i was told recently there's a poll. i spoke to the tip poll. it was the most accurate poll. he told me that the president enjoys about 40% favorability rate which he found amazing considering the incredible negative press barrage that the president has been under. when you look at that, 40% and everyday you turn on the tv and there's another negative story. i think people like bob and other americans in flyover territory are making the
judgment about the president based on their thoughts. not what mika and joe are telling know. host: heidi is in oakland edmond, line for democrats. caller: hi mr. ruddy. the question for you. host: go ahead. caller: you run newsmax. have you ever heard of vanessa molina? host: why do you ask? caller: talking about the fake news. she's illuminati. host: we'll skip that question this morning. let's go to rockville maryland,
independent. caller: good morning. the question i have this morning for the guest is, you're talking so much about fake news, the fact that it's been proven again and again that there's no collusion. why isn't some for of independent -- so control these news? once something there's confirmed there's to collusion, we can broadcast it. all it does is confuses the public. i started watching c-span, i'm absolutely obsessed because it sort of opinion of all. my question is, why isn't there some form of independent -- host: can i ask on that set up you're talking about, who would run that? would that be a federal agency? would that be an independent outside group? caller: i would think independent just because so much -- everything some point gets controlled do seems like. it's so much better if it's independent. once something that's been fact
checked, so be the end of it. all that does, it confuses the public. somebody mentioned that people have such a short span. i feel like that's true. we learn something and we understand it. the next person starts talking it, we start it again. guest: there's a great danger for what you're suggesting. it sounds good on face value. you do not want a group of bureaucrats or independents people deciding what is true and what isn't true. the american people have made that decision. i would urge you to go back and to the internet look up thomas jefferson second inaugural. if you think donald trump criticizes the press too much or angry about the press, read what thomas jefferson said about the press. he says, they are guilty of lies, vicious slander. he had been the subject of that especially in this second campaign for president.
his response was, he said, you know what, at the end of the day, if you have an informed citizenry, that is the best bulwark for stopping what in his day was fake news. that the alternative is far more dangerous. it's okay for error to exist as long as there's reason to combat it and there's a free press to combat. we do want to go down the road where people are deciding what is fake or not. some independent commission is. when a is. when a fake news story comes out and said the pope endorsed donald trump, i think people are smart enough to realize that is a fake news story. if they aren't, they probably my guess is likely not a voter. host: penelope is if san antonio, texas republican, good morning. caller: i like to talk about is
there's absolutely no way to prove a negative. as long as the democrats and turncoat republicans and whoever, want to keep rambling on this russia story, they can interview every person in the district of columbia and still say, we don't have any evidence yet. we're still investigating. until the republicans get together and just start saying, you can't prove a negative. guest: i think you're right. this is the whole basis. it's unfounded allegation that's been started. it's really -- it's political leverage against the president. i criticized barack obama. i praised barack obama on certain things that he did. i think his general war on terrorism was good. it was continuation of the bus
thing. killing bin laden, i praised him and wrote about it. we didn't go on political witch hunt against obama on newsmax. we disagreed when we thought it was appropriate to do it. that's the level and tone. anybody that goes to my site now, you will see stories a are pro trump you'll see ones critical of the trump. we don't hide from the news. we need to bring this back into the country where so many -- the "washington post" is a great publication. they've also hired 30 to sit there and write articles about the president. they didn't have 30 reporters covering barack obama everyday. i get the feeling sometimes there's so many reporters covering the president a they almost take stuff that doesn't really have much there there. they blow it out of proportion. they should be talking about the
facts. host: before you go our last minute that we have. i want to ask you the attorney general and his a appearance. today. is the president being well served by his attorney general? guest: i don't track everything that the attorney general does. everything so far, i think has been fine. i believe that the attorney general made a strategic error by recusing himself when he really had no reason to do so. that has set in motion a series of things that have been detrimental to the president. i believe that robert mueller poses a serious threat to the trump presidency. not because i think there's anything there, at the end of the day, they're going to spend millions and millions in legal. the president has a very important agenda. this country really needs to get moving on infrastructure, taxes and this is going to totally sideline a lot of that and slow down the progress that the country needs to make.
host: chris ruddy is ceo of newsmax. appreciate you stopping by. guest: i encourage people to download our app and you can watch newsmax tv anywhere in the world at any time for free. host: come back again and talk to us down the road. time for open phones here on "washington journal." you can start calling in now line for republicans democrats and independents. we'll be right back. >> sunday night on afterwards, utah republican senator mike lee talks about forgotten historical figures who fought against big government in his book, "written out of history." >> when you're on the look out for them they come to you gradually. you can ask friends and other people i knew who they thought should get more credit than they get. this is indian chief who was from the tribe. he understood the principle of
federalism. they lived it for centuries before we were our own country. >> i was intrigued by that. he is not a name that most americans know anything about. yet he had a profound impact on our system of government. he's the guy who benjamin franklin to learn about federalism. benjamin franklin was conduit for which this information flowed. made his way into the articles of confederation and into the constitution. >> watch sunday night at at 9:00 eastern. ♪ >> c-span, where history unfolds daily. in 1979, c-span was created as a public service. it's brought to you today by your cable or satellite