tv After the Bell FOX Business October 23, 2017 4:00pm-5:00pm EDT
there is is chart of properties. thanks, jason. [closing bell rings]. a day without a record. the dow, nasdaq and s&p. we're down 50 points as make it through final six seconds, five, four, three, two, one. see you tomorrow. melissa: i blame connell. >> a stumble into the close. who are you pointing at? melissa: i'm blaming you. market closed down. we had no record. you're the variable. >> relax. nasdaq isdown too. i'm connell mcshane in for david asman. melissa: i'm melissa francis. this is "after the bell." here is what else we're covering during this busy hour ahead. president trump making a big push on capitol hill on tax reform telling lawmakers get it done by end of the year or pay the price a live report from the white house. aspects counsel robert mueller's
federal investigation now setting sights on a powerful democratic lobbiest. who he is and why. what happened to those four american soldiers killed in an ambush in niger. we're expecting a news conference from chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general joseph dunford from the pentagon. any moment we'll take you there live. >> look at markets. nicole on floor of new york stock exchange. well it is almost like we need a little bit of a breather, right, nicole? what are traders saying. >> they think it is quite okay we have a little bit of a breather. they are impressed we tested thresholds and moved higher. scott ressler on us last hour said exactly that we pull back hold levels on bottom, only moving higher to the up side. you saw every sector to the downside, energy, materials, telecom, utilities, those
dividend-paying stocks those did okay. we're trying to hold on to the green. everything finished to the downside. the dow down 53 points after the 70th record close on friday under, since election day i should note. some other movers, names weighed on dow. ge was a big laggard. down 6.3%. the company cut its outlook. mcdonald es, ibm, goldman sachs, under pressure. hasbro weighed on s&p 500. they're talking about toys "r" us bankruptcy, how that could hurt them for the holidays. they are a little cautious on that one. that is down 8 1/2% today. back to you. connell: thank you, nicole. chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general joseph dunford briefing what happened in niger. let's listen. >> we were at inflection point in the global campaign, not an end point. i welcome chiefs of defense and representatives from 75
different countries to improve effectiveness of and defeat terrorism. in the our discussion we'll focus on improving information sharing between nations to dedebt and defeat attacks before they occur and improve the support for nations confronted with violent extremism and that is exactly what our forces in niger were doing. the united states military has had forces in niger off and on more than 20 years. today approximately 800 servicemembers in niger work as part of an international effort led by 4,000 french troops to defeat terrorists in west africa. since 2011 french and u.s. troops trained five-thousand person west african force and over 35,000 soldiers from the region to fight terrorists and affiliated with isis, al qaeda and boko haram. let me address the specific events in niger that took place early this month. on the 3rd of october, 12
members of u.s. special operations task force accompanied 30 nigerian forces on a civil military reconnaissance anything pro the capital city near an area near the village of tongo-tongo. 30-kilometer letters to the north was location of that village on 4th of october, u.s. and nigerian forces moved south. the patrol came under attack from 50 enemies using small arms, fire, rocket-propelled grenade is and technical vehicles. what i want to walk through for you the timeline that we have in kind of what i would categorize what we know about the incident. early morning of 3rd of october u.s. forces accompanied nye saparmurat niyazov gearian unit. they assessed that contact with the enemy was unlikely. mid-morning october 4th the patrol began to take fire as they were returning to the
operating base. approximately one hour after taking fire the team requested support. within minutes, a remotely piloted aircraft arrived over head. within an hour french mirage jets arrived on station. later that afternoon french attack helicopters arrived on station and nigerian quick reaction force arrived with troops in contact with the enemy. during the firefight, two u.s. soldiers and evacuated by french. and that was consistent with the evacuation plan in place for this particular operation. three u.s. soldiers killed in action were evacuated on evening of 4 october, at that time sergeant la david johnson was still missing. on evening of 6th october, the sergeant johnson body's found and subsequently evacuated. by the time the firefight initiated until sergeant johnson's body was covered, french, nigerian or u.s. forces remained in the area.
many of you asked number of questions. many are fair questions. we owe you more information. more importantly, we owe the families of the fallen more information. that is what the investigation is designed to identify. the questions include did the mission of u.s. forces change during the operation? did our forces have adequate intelligence, equipment and training? was there a premission assessment of the threat in the area accurate? did you u.s. force, how did u.s. forces become separated during the engagement, specifically sergeant johnson? why did it take time to find and recover sergeant johnson? again these are all fair questions that the investigation is designed to identify. what i would say is that i hope from this brief overview i have outlined why our forces were in niger. what they were doing at the time of the incident in 3rd or 4th october. what we know, and questions remain we will work on next several weeks as the investigation unfolds.
with that i'm happy to take your questions. >> general dunford, thanks very much. we have reported that sergeant johnson's body was found someone mile away from the initial site of contact s that consistent with the information you have and is there any assessment at this point as to why that was the case? i have a brief follow up, if you don't mind. >> sure. jim, this is for all of you as we ask questions. we feel pretty confident in what took place before this patrol moved out. we know the general route that the patrol took before they came back in. what happened from the time the patrol went out on the operation to time it returned there has been a lot of speculation and a lot of reports, and that is why i want to baseline what we know and what we don't know. what you're asking is a fair question, but we don't know that definitely right now. i can't answer it definitely. what i'm trying to do today, is be very candid and what do we know, i will share with you, where i have seen speculation, and then what the fundamental
questions we're asking. the questions we're asking, this is very complex situation they found themselves in, pretty tough firefight. what tactical instructions commander on the scene gave at given time that caused units to manuever, where they might have been when sergeant johnson's body was found, those are all questions we'll identify during the investigation. you had a follow-up. reporter: you're aware that some in the administration when faced with tough questions about this information, the information-sharing from the had intimated members of the press shouldn't ask tough questions, particularly of people in uniform or recently in uniform. i am curious if you have reaction to that? do you share any of that? do you take issue with that? >> myself sharing information with the media. i don't know what you're referring to, i will not benchmark my comments against that. i think first and foremost in this particular case we owe the
families as much information we can find out what happened and we owe the american people an explanation what their men and women were doing at this particular time. and when i say that i mean men and women in harm's way anywhere in the world. they should know what the mission is and what we're trying to accomplish when they're there. those are all fair questions in my judgment. in other words we're out here today, is to take your questions and provide as much information as we. the only thing i'm asking for today is a bit of patience to make sure what we provide to you, when we provide it is factual. the other thing that is important, when this information is finally available, the first thing we'll do is go visit families in their homes should they welcome us. we will have a team go in of experts. i have done this personally myself, several times, team of experts go into the family and share all the facts available as a result of the investigation and give them an opportunity to ask questions. as soon as we're done with that,
we'll come back in here, we'll share exactly that same information that we share with the families. so, when i tell you today we don't know, it will be a fair answer, we don't know. and i'll tell you everything we do know definitely. i will tell you what the key elements are of the investigation that we hope to find out in the coming weeks. but again with regard to being transparent, i think we do owe the families and the american people transparency in incidents like this. we intend to deliver just that. reporter: general dunford, quick follow-up on the timeline. you said they didn't call for air support, until an hour into contact? >> correct. reporter: then the french came, 90 minutes, good two hours after initial contact which conflicts with what we have been told. >> let me walk you through the timeline. the best we know now, when i have a degree of confidence i'm sharing it, about an hour after the initial contacts with made they requested support.
when they requested support, it took french aircraft, the french were ready to go in 30 minutes. it took them 30 minutes, approximately 30 minutes to get on the scene. so from that, i think it's a fair conclusion to say, that about two hours after the initial contact was made the initial french mirages arrived overhead but it is important to note when they didn't ask for support for that first hour, my judgment would be that that, that unit thought they could handle the situation without additional support. so, we'll find out in the investigation exactly why it took an hour for them to call. we shouldn't conclude anything by that one hour. it may very well have been, i have been in these situations myself, you're confronted with enemy contact. initial assessment you can deal with the contact with resources you have. at some point in the firefight they concluded they then needed support. so they called for additional support. the confusion of the 30 minutes which is always a danger coming out sharing information, right?
this is what i'm trying to do clear up today, i think what you were told in the past, that the french were there in 30 minutes. they responded within 30 minutes. they were overhead of this unit within 30 minutes. that is were the 30 minutes came from. i'm making that clarification. reporter: operational clarification, you said they were ambushed when they were coming back to their outpost. previously we've been told they were ambushed leaving village. is there discrepancy? >> there is not discrepancy. when i described they're leaving the village, where are they going at that point. they're going back to the operating base. they're moving southport port far from the village? >> i don't have exact details how far. the investigation again, we'll go out there -- these investigations for those that haven't been involved in the past, there will be people on the ground that will actually go and look where this took place, measure the distances and get details. we will be provided so we provide the family with detailed graphics what happened, how this
unfolded. i wouldn't want to talk about numbers and meters from the village. the initial report contact made with the enemy was outside of the village, south of the village heading back to their operating base. reporter: i want to be clear, sir, they did not call for support until hour after first contact. that is putting a lot of pressure on those team members, so can you say without a shadow of a doubt, within that hour they did in the try to call out for support? >> what i can tell you, the timeline that we have is the first, first indicator that the unit called for external support was one hour later. now we'll tell you, the information i'm providing to you today is the complete information i have available. we may very well find out, this is the difficulty in addressing these before the investigation is complete. i'm not, tell you what, one thing i would push back on hard is, i'm not putting any pressure on that unit. i made it very clear that i make no judgment as to how long it
took them to ask for support. i don't know that they thought they needed support prior to that time. i don't know how this attack unfolded. i don't know what the initial assessment was what they were confronted with. what i know our logs indicate an hour after the contact, approximately they requested support. i talked about the timeline of the french response. that is just what i know right now. i'm not going to tell you that in the investigation we won't find out that they attempted to get support and it didn't come. i'm telling you what i know. everything beyond what i told you would be speculation. tom? reporter: is there good enough intelligence, do they have enough isr and equipment. general walt houser who runs african command, said in the theater he doesn't have enough. if the french comes to help out doesn't that raise the question is there enough american equipment there number one? >> sure. reporter: secretary mattis wants
to expand and lean forward more with africom. can you do that without sending more equipment isr over there? >> fair question. i would distinguish what does the commander of africom need to do a full range of missions he needs to be done, and, what missions are being done with equipment available. and i would tell you, general walters may need more capability to do more mission or more expansive mission, the responsibility of commanders is to deploy the force within resources they have available. we shouldn't confuse need for more capability to expand the mission with what capabilities are provided to a particular unit at a particular time, if you understand the distinction i'm trying to make. reporter: particular question still needs to be answered. >> absolutely. there are two reasons to do the investigation. one reason is to make sure that we inform the families, the american people. and congress of course. the second is, every time something like this happens, we
do an internal look at ourselves. we find out what is it that we did, what could we do better? make changes based on what i would consider an after-action review. so i think that is fair. >> other issue, there are some in african command, some here in the pentagon think special forces are taking too many risks over there. >> i think that would be speculation. here is what i'm very clear on. i'm clear on the framework which this operation took place. in other words, what do their orders say. i don't have any indication right now to believe or to know that they did anything other than operate within the orders that they were given. that is what the investigation is all about. so i think anyone that speculates about what special operations forces did or didn't do is doing exactly that, they're speculating. reporter: in general special operators in africa may take the risk. that is sense of some people in this building or africom? >> that is my assessment they're
taking too many risks. keep in mind, i talked about enemy contact being unlikely on this particular mission, the reason why we're in west africa because of area of concentration of isis and al qaeda. the reason why our special operations forces are operating in libya because there is threat of isis attacks from libya. the reason they're in east africa, there is al qaeda and smaller isis presence there. to the extent they're taking risk. we sent them to operate in areas which there are extremist elements that if we weren't conducting operations, our judgment is they would be having capability to conduct and plan operations against the homeland, the american people or our allies. are they taking risks? they are. are they taking risks unreasonable or not within their capabilities, i don't have any reason to believe that. sure. i will stay to answer questions. i will get to you all. reporter: thank you, general dunford. can you describe what weapons this unit had with them to
defend themselves? were they heavily defended going in light trucks not expecting much resistance? >> i will answer the second part because i know. i give you in general the first part. they did not expect resistance on it particular patrol, at least when they first planned. what happened subsequently will be the investigation. because the rules in that part of west africa are we will only accompany partnered firsts when the chances of enemy contact are unlikely. so with that, they were equipped with machine guns, small arms, and obviously had the ability with communications capability to reach back and get greater, larger supporting arms. reporter: have you learned at all what type of fire they came under? small-arms fire? were there ieds? >> initial report, i don't any reports of ieds. i haven't seen those. small arms, rockets and machine guns. jennifer, come this way.
>> general dunford, when did you alert the white house? there are indications that they did not know until 10 hours after the tack began. also there are members on capitol hill, members of the armed services committee say they didn't know we had troops in niger. is that possible? reporter: two separate questions. we notified the white house as soon as we had a soldier that was missing, was the first report. they would have received a initial report simultaneously with me way it works with the on centers, we reported three killed in action. we made specific calls with a soldier was missing. we didn't report publicly in the process trying to recover him. i know, i spoke to general walthouser at that night when we got the initial report t was probably 9:00 or 9:30
washington, d.c. time, the night of the 4th. at that point knowing we had a missing soldier, we made a decision to make sure all the resources including national assets were available for recovery of that operation. of course we maintained operational security to not put at risk our operations to recover sergeant johnson at that particular time. with regard to congress, i heard criticism, when i provide enough information. in a way i've taken that to say, if the congress doesn't believe they're getting sufficient information, then i need to double my efforts to provide them with information. so without going through what people may have known at any given point in time about this operation or any other operation, one thing i can tell you secretary mattis and are i committed to satisfy needs of congress for information they need to provide oversight. we're looking okay, we thought we were doing all right. what is most important how the congress feels about that. so we need to double our
communications efforts and we'll do that. reporter: thank you, general. you mentioned there has been a reconnaissance mission. there have been conflicting accounts. have you seen any evidence to suggest that the mission changed in nature from its original intent? >> no. here is what we know. it was planned as reconnaissance mission, what happened after they executed it, if the mission changed that is one of the questions being asked, it is a fair question, but i can't answer definitely the question. we've seen reports, speculation, given what happened is a fair question to ask, because if the enemy situation was unlikely we obviously lost four soldiers, two others wounded in significant firefight. so at some point did intelligence available to them changed? did they have other intelligence available? did they decide to do something different than the original patrol with partner forces.
that is something the investigation is looking to uncover. reporter: general are, you satisfied overall with the response times, including fact it took two days to sergeant johnson's body? more broadly what does it suggest to you how you go back things going ahead? is this a more dangerous area than perhaps intelligence or something something indicated and do you change things, change assets over head and increase security patrol? >> all the questions you asked, all of those will be informed by reading of the investigation. we'll ask every single question you just asked. we'll ask ourselves and make adjustments. keep in mind, i think it is an important point, this area is inherently dangerous. the judgment of contact with the enemy was made about a particular operation at a particular location at a particular time. so, is this a dangerous area? yes. that, we're there because isis
and al qaeda are operating in that area. that is why our forces provided advice and assist, with local forces to help deal with the particular challenge. with regard to equiping, responsiveness, those are questions we'll ask at every level once the question is included. important to baseline support was requested, what particular time, what did it arrive, was it what they needed. all those are fair questions. i would ask for your your patience, giving us time it takes to do the investigation. one of the questions we haven't asked yet, how long will it take to do the investigation? for secretary mattis and i, we talked to general walthauser we expressed sense of your again i to get the answers to the questions you asked and we want to do that as quickly as possible and we prioritized to
make sure the investigation is accurate. when we go to families and what happened, it is based on facts. we balance the need to do this quickly, with the need to make sure that is accurate. we'll certainly err on the side of accuracy. >> should there have been u.s. forces used to help locate his body rather than relying on niger forces you think? >> there were niger forces involved in the operation. there were french forces involved in the operation and u.s. forces involved in the page in its entirety. there were u.s. forces involved in recovery. as i mentioned to you, without going into detail, as soon as general walthauser contacted me that night. i spoke to the secretary of defense. it was 20 second phone call what we were asking for. i immediately called general walthauser and told him his request for additional support was approved and we started putting wheels in motion to deliver that capability. once we found out sergeant
johnson was missing we brought the full weight of the u.s. government to bear trying to recover his body. >> there is a 800 troops of niger. is that high point what we have in region? more in mali are nigeria? >> no, that is largest number in africa. we have more in east africa but in any one country that is most. reporter: mission creep -- >> what i will do. i will have the team come back, look at all the countries. it is also a high in this particular area. again we've been there off and on for over 20 years. we established a joint special operations task force in 2011. in 2008. we had five or 600 forces there some months ago. this happened to be high of 800.
reporter: public will wonder is this mission creep? in 1993, october 3rd, "black hawk down"? >> i do. reporter: people say is this mission creep? >> let me talk about the mission. i think it is important for me to go back to my opening statement to talk about strategically what we're trying to do. in my judgement we're dealing global threats like al qaeda and isis. we're trying to put pressure on them simultaneously wherever they are. and important to participate where they will be. to anticipate where they are and where they will be when they get there, local security forces have ability to meet challenges from al qaeda, isis and other groups. we're working with partners on the ground and in other parts of africa. that is what we're doing in africa and afghanistan. if you look at numbers we have
800 americans, 4,000 french and other partners. look at numbers in afghanistan, 11,000 americans on the ground, 300,000 afghans. with a relatively small footprint we're enabling local forces to deal with the challenges before they become a threat to the american people. and to help them deal with the challenges so they don't further destablize their local area or region. melissa: so you have been listening to general dunford at the pentagon, and this is really the heart of the story we've been talking about here with the four green berets lost in niger. how their group set out on patrol, was set upon and ultimately how we lost american lives. there are a lot of questions. people who didn't know why we were there, how many troops were there, what was the mission, why did it take so long between the time they were set upon that
they then got reinforcements. this is an attempt to answer a lot of questions, although to be fair as he said early in the investigation. connell: the general is up front there are questions need to be answered coming through the investigation. there is the big picture and smaller picture of this. you mentioned number of troops there, there are members of congress even on republican side, like lindsey graham, why are we there, didn't know we were there, that type of thing. those questions we to the some answers to, talking about 800 u.s. servicemembers being in niger, largest of any african country. talking about a larger effort to fight terrorism, specifically mentioning isis, al qaeda, boko haram, in west africa. then we found out a lot about. we got into details of some of the timeline what happened to the four soldiers and the sergeant for sergeant la david johnson's bad did i afterwards. there rather questions we don't know yet. melissa: definitely. they were talking up front how yes, this is a very dangerous area. this is where al qaeda in isis
has moved to, why we're in the african theater. that brings up the idea do we need more troops in the area? is there mission creep. connell: listening along with us, david sears, retired navy seal. david joins us now. what stood out from you of general dunford's briefing? >> i like how clear he was exactly what is occurring. he laid out the baseline what it is about and where we're going with the investigation, and what it is about, can we fix things what occurred and letting the family know and bring them to closure what happened. i thought it was very clear and well-done. connell: let me go to the specific incident, timeline. 3rd of october, 4th of october, what he was talking about. we know there were 12 u.s. special operators go into the task force into the village. what they leave the village in niger, they come under fire, at that point, four total killed,
three bodies found. there seems to be question about how long it took them to ask for assistance. what do you make of that, that it was an hour after they came under fire, that they requested assistance and then a total of another hour later until a french aircraft arrived on the scene? >> again it is just as general dunford said, that is the initial report, right? connell: right. >> likely if that holds true they thought they could handle this or had it under control. connell: from your experience, for lack of a better term normal? that didn't surprise you to hear that? >> that is normal, no, exactly. if they think they have it under control. they have been ambushed and think they're countering ambush -- the enemy manuevers, enemy get as big vote and flank them, they see there are more cornered more enemy they have to react. you don't want to call in every single's set in the world, drag everything there for no need. you try to handle what you can
on your own. connell: what does preassessment look like? the general spoke about that, the preassessment told them they're unlikely to come under fire here? >> exactly. they will do a risk assessment what does the patrol look like what do we expect to encounter and what is the all the intelligence. it is not a perfect world. you don't have 100% clarity that could occur. connell: something could have changed in the mission, he alluded to, something we don't know, right? >> i'm not sure the mission was changed. the mission seems to me went as planned. they conducted a meeting, with reconnaissance and went with nigerians or nigers, were returning back to base. seems mission went as planned but the enemy introduce ad different piece to it and conducted an ambush after that. so then everything changes. connell: david, thanks for we'll pick up conversation. thanks for your analysis. >> thanks, connell. melissa: the president is pushing congress to serve him a tax bill on his desk for
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blake burman has that. blake. reporter: we just thought he was coming here for diplomatic talks but there was a pretty big announcements off the top as it related to boeing. the president announced that singapore airlines would buy 39 planes from boeing, to the tune of shy of $14 billion. president trump said that would lead to 70,000 jobs, as he pointed out u.s. jobs at that at the top of the agenda of course remains tax reform. it was earlier this morning when president trump shot down a story right off the bat this morning as it relates to 401(k)s, and how much money may or may not be taxed. here is tweet from the president, quote, there will be no change to the 401(k). this is always a great and popular middle class tax break. that works and stays, the president proclaimed. more ambiguous, going forward as we look for the tax reform battle, just how wealthiest of americans might be taxed. there was a story over the weekend which contended that republicans are looking attacks
ing millionaires, at least keeping their rates the same at 39.6 level. if you make a million bucks the rate might not drop. talking with senior administration official saying that number is premature, at least the report is, that the number is not set in stone. the other question whether or not will be fifth tax rate, somewhere above 35% and current law at 39.6%. maria bartiromo asked president trump about it the other day, while he said it is something they are looking at he couldn't necessarily offer a guarranty. >> i don't think we'll use a fifth bracket. i only want to use a fifth bracket if for any reason i think middle class is getting as much as they thought they would. they're entitled to a lot. this is about the middle class. it is really about the middle class and jobs. reporter: by the way, connell, melissa, on capitol hill the chairman of the ways and means committee, said no decision has been made on the top tax
bracket. bottom line there is a lot of talk what may or may not happen over last couple weeks t appears a lot of details here are still being worked out. connell: yeah, still some work to do, sounds like. blake, thank you, melissa. melissa: here is congressman peter roskam, republican congressman from illinois, house ways and means tax policy chairman. when i hear about what is still being discussed and i hear issues that anyone involved is willing to lead with, like what we heard just now, makes me think those are points of negotiation. this is thing i'm willing to give away or add. in your mind, what are the points around the edges here right now? >> start at the core, because at the core is middle income tax relief. melissa: right. >> at core is rate no higher than 20%. pass-through rate no higher than 25%, previously mentioned, trying to create the best business environment we possibly can. everything else is subject to these large discussions, once we know that debt amount that we're
able to borrow, that is 1.5 trillion, that is what it is looking like, you will see the ways and means committee, senate finance committee, begin this process of writing to that number, looks like that will be the number in all likelihood. all these things are subject to negotiating. this is about adjusting dials to come up with a good result. melissa: you have a financial audience watching you here. they certainly understand the equation how things are made. what you laid out is the core. we understand that is the meat of it. that is not going anywhere. what is around the edges are the idea that is this idea of another bracket that is way to collect more money to make the whole thing balance out the other thing when you talk about deduction for state and local taxes is that another thing being pushed back and forth or is that definitely going away. is that another point there to create money or to you know, trade away to somebody who lives in a state that will get taxed a lot, that is not very happy
about what is going on? >> i'm right in the middle of that discussion. i represent urban chicago. illinois, california, new york, new jersey, are states particularly sensitive to this and the point i made largely, look, to walk away prothat and reassign a tax liability from one end country to another is not tax reform. we have to come together, members of congress from high-taxed states coming to the table on this trying to find a soft landing. from my point of view i think my constituents are particularly scandalized by the property tax. well, if that is true, is there a way for to us separate out property taxes from other things? there is a lot of discussions about this. but one point is, you can't have tax reform without reforming the tax code. it sounds like a truism. that means these things have to be on the table. they have to be readjusted to the point of coming up with something. melissa: absolutely. you brought back in the idea of a property tax around that. so are you saying you would
trade in a property tax deduction would phase out at certain level? >> what i'm saying there is lot of interest coming up with a soft landing on this notion of state and local taxes and my constituents who are representing are particularly scandalized by the property tax. melissa: how but twice spend a lot less? >> that is a great idea. that is worthy. other states, large states, too, sending a lot of money to the federal government. sort of well, this is subsidy of red states to blue states. melissa: yeah. >> it doesn't quite fit in the calculation if you look at outbound flow to the federal taxpayers but here is the bottom line. nobody likes the status quo. melissa: that is true. >> we're in a place we can't stay. we have once in a generation opportunity to fix it. melissa: thank you for your time. >> thank you. connell: if you look at political scene we see division obviously in both parties. the gop establishment though is on notice. mitch mcconnell, fighting back what he called specialists who
connell: we have the swamp fighting back. fallout from steve bannon's plan to go after gop incumbents. mitch mcconnell and other white house strategists backing the plan are specialists at nominating people who lose. >> this is not about personalities. this is about achievement. and in order to make policy, you have to actually win the election. the kind of people that are supported by the element that you have just been referring to are specialists in defeating republican candidates in november. and that is what this inner party skirmish is about. connell: let's go to vince colin nays from "the daily caller"
where he is editor-in-chief. we'll talk about both parties. start with senator mcconnell's comments. is it even correct? what is your view? >> in steve bannon, kelly ward oaf john mccain, didn't happen over thad cochran, didn't happen. mitch mcconnell holding on to that his evidence, don't listen to steve bannon, don't listen to any of my naysayers, reality electorally mitch mcconnell has mixed record of his own. mike lee, ted cruz, rand paul. what do they have in common, mitch mcconnell opposed them before they became u.s. senators. they have outsized presences in the republican party and all ran for president. when you kind of assess this, what you should assess is that mitch mcconnell is sort of desperately trying to hold on to some power here. conservatives are upset at him, rightfully some there are lot of legislative achievements when you have a senate, white house, all congress and they have a lot
of blame that they lay at must have mitch peace feet. connell: the enthusiasm is on steve bannon on his side, don't you think. >> anti-establishment enthusiasm is undoubt the lid why donald trump is president of the united states. why you have seen so much discontent not only from the base and president himself this year as he challenged senate to change rules for instance, in order to get legislation passed. connell: we've seen it on the other side, think about a democratic centrist that existed in either party, a lot of people think about joe manchin, west virginia, when he is running he may want hillary clinton to help him out. but listen to this. >> wouldn't be wise for hillary to come to west virginia. wouldn't be a good thing for her or for me. connell: so much for that. vince? >> when you say during the campaign you would put coal businesses and coal workers out of business, it is crazy to expect you would get a warm welcome in west virginia. west virginia vote remembers best example way democrats are
struggling since the 2016 election. they're having trouble identifying with working class voters. when it comes to pocketbooks issues democrats are not nowhere near them. they don't care about global warming or transgender bathrooms. they care about making money. connell: you are probably right, west virginia translates to that. vince, thank you. >> thank you. melissa: this time a democrat is in the spotlight. fred barnes joins us after the break with his take. ♪ i need to get back on track with my plan." the financial advisor was able to work with this client. he's now on track to retire when he's 65. having someone coach you through it is really the value of a financial advisor.
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registration act surrounding its work with ukraine. this according to nbc news, remember, tony of course is the brother of john podesta, the former clinton campaign chair. here is fred barnes, "weekly standard" executive editor. what do you make of this group of facts? >> well, there are a couple of things, one, mueller is going wherever he wants to. doesn't make a difference, whether he started looking at possible collusion between people at the trump campaign and russians. now they're going to get into all the clinton people. interest are a lot of connections. it is not just tony podesta. you could say, tony podesta, this was just a ukrainian group he was helping improve its image. it's a ukrainian group that was pro-russian. according to nbc, financed by the russian oligarchs. so i think some of these firms like the podesta group now knee-deep in it. it will expand. melissa: knee deep in it. what does that mean?
as we look threw all of this, you sort of start to get this picture that there are russians hiring americans to help them with all kinds of things. whether it is lobbying, improving their image, trying to make connections in washington, one way or the other, everybody has done something some point in time. it is starting to feel like that. is that inherently wrong? >> that is inherently right. melissa: is it unlawful, is it immoral, where is the law in all this? >> the law in this can be a minor one. well, they didn't register. they didn't disclose that they were working for this ukrainian group, nominally ukrainian group and that's a pretty, you know, you can be sent to jail for five years but nobody is and those non-disclosure violations are rarely even prosecuted. so, that's the small part. the big part is, there has been this network of clinton people, the clinton foundation is
involved, and all these russians, even, john podesta was involved in it. a group that with was, i believe it was a mining company or an energy company. melissa: yeah. >> and there were senior russian government officials on the board with him. all these connections that have been ignored. here is the point, melissa, they have been ignored, with all the emphasis on trump and russia, these ones with clinton and russia, the clintons, i think are now going to be looked into heavily. melissa: those are there. you put on top of issues with paul manafort and mike flynn, everybody is working for the russians, what do we conclude out of that? that this is all bad? we have to stop everybody from doing it? that they're influencing our democracy from every different side and we need to put up our guard? i'm wondering for people out there, if everybody is taking money from russia, everyone is doing it what is the downside? what am i supposed to be looking out for and upset about?
>> the downside is, for instance with this effort that was, after the reset hillary clinton with great relations with russia and help them build silicon valley. the through that the russians got all sorts of dual-use technology. you know what that means? military technology that they get. there are some aspects of this can be looked into. that are in, and there are, look, it was a policy. i think it is still basically, maybe not untrump but certainly was under obama, we'll have better relations. we'll send businessmen over there. melissa: yeah. >> we'll deal with russian companies and so on. but there is a downside. and now that is what we're seeing. melissa: whatever we do we don't want to sell them 20% of our awe uranium supply. that is disaster. >> no excuse for that. melissa: oh, wait. fred barnes. connell: thank you so much. connell: little break from politics. might be a good thing coming up here in a moment. coming together as americans. a rare public appearance from
when they see their neighbors and their friends they see strangers in need the american step up. the heart of america without regard to race or religion or political party is greater than a problem. i speak for the folks right here when i say we really admire and love george hw bush. five men who all held the highest office. i don't know about 39.