tv This Week With George Stephanopoulos ABC January 22, 2017 8:00am-9:01am PST
starting right now on "this week" with george stephanopoulos. >> i, donald john trump. do solemnly swear. >> donald trump takes the oath. >> this american carnage stops right here and stops right now. >> stark promises. >> from this day forward, it's going to be only america first. >> and gets to work. >> we're going to start winning again and you're going to be leading the charge. and -- >> not my president. >> after massive protests. can he unite a divided america? >> the -- is not america. we are america. >> tough questions ahead for counsellor to the president, kellyanne conway.
senator john mccain, and senate minority leader chuck schumer. after the transfer of power. a new administration. what is first on the agenda for number 45? from abc news, it's "this week." here now, chief anchor george stephanopoulos. good morning. what an extraordinary start to this new presidency. the day after his inauguration, president trump met with massive protests. hundreds of thousands in the capital for the women's march on washington. hundreds of thousands more in new york. chicago. los angeles. cities across the country and around the world. from paris to sydney, australia. the president ignored the protests. on his first full day in office, he used his bully pulpit to deny reality and declare war on the press. >> i have a running war with the media. they sort of made it sound like i had a feud with the
intelligence community. and i just want to let you know. the reason you're the number one stop, it's exactly the opposite. exactly. >> reports of a feud were based on trump's own statements. during the transition, he accused the intelligence community of conducting a political witch hunt. questioned their quote intelligence. he suggested the cia director leaked damaging material on him. and compared the agency to the nazis. >> i think it's a disgrace. and you say that and i say that -- and that is something that nazi germany would have done and did do. >> trump also inflated his inaugural crowds to the cia and opened a new front with the press. >> it looked -- honestly, looked like a million and a half people. whatever it was, it was. it went all the way back to the washington monument. and i turned and i -- i get this network. and it showed an empty field. it said we drew 250,000 people. now, that's not bad. but it's a lie.
so -- we caught them. and we caught them in a beauty. i think they're going to pay a big price. >> hours later, the president sent press secretary sean spicer to the podium for his first white house briefing. where he called the press, reckless, shameful. accused some of sowing division with false narratives. >> yesterday, at a time when the world and the nation was watching the peaceful transition of power. and as the president said, the transition of the power from washington to the citizens of the united states, some members of the media were involved in the deliberately false reporting. this was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration. period. both in person and around the globe. >> the facts say otherwise. there on the left is barack obama's first inauguration in 2009 at noon. on the right, the matching shot for donald trump's inauguration at the exact same time. according to the nielsen ratings, 30.6 million people
tuned in to watch trump take the oath of office. that's more than four years ago. but fewer viewers than obama in 2009. both were dwarfed by ronald reagan in 1981. and washington metro officials said they had 571,000 riders on inauguration day. down from 782,000 in 2013. and more than 1 million in 2009. spicer closed the briefing with a warning. >> there's been a lot of talk in the media about the responsibility to hold donald trump accountable. i'm here to tell you, it goes two ways. we're going to hold the press accountable as well. >> spicer then left the briefing room without taking questions. kellyanne conway is here with us from the white house. thank you for joining us. why did the president choose to give that speech and why have sean spicer make that statement? >> i thought president trump's speech at the cia was remarkable. and he really went there to help with the swearing in on his cia
director, miake pompeo. he hasn't been confirmed yet. the president decided to keep it on his schedule. >> why did he choose to not tell the truth about press reporting on his feud with the intelligence community? that reporting was based on the president's own statements. >> the president went to the intelligence community yesterday to establish good relationships with them. we had over 1,000 requests to attend. we could only accommodate a few hundred. he will be back. he got a standing ovation. it's time for him to put in his own security intelligence community. we would prefer the intelligence community that is going out the door to be much more respectful to the president and his vision in moving forward. we're not thrilled with the leaks that have come out in the last several weeks or months. we think in the interest of keeping us all safe, george, the intelligence community that we saw on their feet yesterday welcoming president trump for his rousing speech is the one we look forward to working with.
>> you mentioned the outgoing officials. former cia director brennan put out a statement from his aide. former cia director brennan is deeply saddened and angered at trump's despicable display of self-aggrandizement in front of the cia's memorial wall of agency heroes. brennan says that trump should be ashamd of himself. your response? >> i thought that was an unremarkable, spectacularly disappointing statement. from the outgoing cia director. george, does that statement and the very vituperative language improve relationships with the intelligence community? we have an outgoing cia director sounding like a partisan political hack. about the president of the united states. i think everybody needs to take a step back and a very deep breath, george, and think about what their words are. you had president trump calling for unity, patriotism, giving america back to its people in his inaugural address. the government back to its people. the outgoing cia director making a statement like that.
how in the world does that improve relationships with our intelligence community? it was deeply disappointing and unnecessary. >> while we're still on the intelligence community, you know several agencies and the fbi are now investigating possible contacts between trump associates and the russians during the campaign. will president trump pledge to allow those investigations to go forward without any interference from anyone in the white house? >> our executive branch does not believe in interfering with the legislative branch, what they choose to do. we believe in federalism. i would say that -- >> but these are in the government. these are the agencies that the government of your administration who are now investigating. >> well, same thing. we're not going to comment on that. if they feel they need to do that. these media reports struck us as brand-new information. we had no idea what's going on. i was the campaign manager, contemporaneous with some of those events. and i aslur you i wasn't talking to moscow. i was talking to people in macomb county, michigan. that's how the president became
the president. >> you're sighing the white house won't interfere with it in any way. let talk more about what happened yesterday in the white house briefing room. and sean spicer's briefing. was that the president's idea? >> the president supports his press secretary and his press operation, obviously. i think our press secretary sean spicer was making the point that accountability has to go both way. just the day before in the oval office, while the president was signing executive orders, we allowed a press spray in. i was there. sure enough, a press pooler gave a false report that the bust of martin luther king jr. had been removed from the oval office. that is just false. it's dangerous and destructive on day one for the press to be reporting false information. >> that was one -- >> the bust of churchill had been returned and the bust of martin luther king is there. the press pooler apologized and the damage is done. >> i thing you're right. he probably shouldn't have reported it if he wasn't positive.
he was called on it. he apologized. i want to get to the issue of accountability. you all make that point often. you had instances yesterday where both the president and sean spicer talked about the reporting on the crowd size and repeated things that just are not true. >> george, the crowd size is not an animating topic to me for a simple reason. he had hundreds of thousands of people here. there's no question. i was on the platform where the president was. we saw crowds as far as the eye can see. presidents are not judged by their likability ratings among contemporaries or the crowd sizes at the inauguration. they're judged by the -- >> i completely agree. let me step in there. because i completely agree with that. we spent 11 hours on the air on friday during the inauguration barely talked about the crowd size if we brought it up at all. we spent time talking to people in the crowds. the question is, why does the president choose to talk about that at the cia? why does he send his press secretary out to talk about it in his first white house briefing and say things that are not true? >> george, i would just say
about crowd size. first of all, there was rain that -- the downpour that was reported. ajd and i think it deterred many people from coming. there were thousands of people here. 31 million people watched this inaugural i'm sure including watched abc's coverage of it. according to nielsen. that is far above the 20.5 million that watched president obama's second inauguration. many other people are watching on other screens. phones. online. we're confident that the crowd sizes in the historic election of donald trump. and it was historic. based on projections. that were given. based on the fact that we, for the first time, have a nonpolitician in the white house. i think the crowd size argument is not as important. as what he's going to do this week as president of the united states. >> again, i completely agree. that's why i'm asking why he chose to make his first speech about it and the first press briefing about it? >> that did nominate media coverage by many yesterday. a day after the inauguration. and there are plenty of people. you saw the march yesterday. plenty of people trying to
delegitimize the president. and honestly, it doesn't matter. because he's a man of action. watch what happens just in the first week. presidents are judged by accomplishments. but i would tell you. the great deal of interest that has attended donald trump through his campaign continued through his inauguration in terms of 31 million people watching the inauguration on tv. that is far and above what president obama had in his second inauguration. but, you know, i just think, look, i want good relationships with the press. i'm here in part, for that reason. but it does -- it has to be a two-way street. when i see twitter feeds. words people are using to describe this president, it's incredibly disrespectful to the office. just watch what he does. he's going to end this week at the gop house and senate retreat. he'll meet with his first foreign leader here at the white house, theresa may, prime minister from the united kingdom. the two came in similarly, from brexit and the movement in the united states. people want the government to go
back to the people. his speech called for unity. it was uplifting. and it called about patriotism and giving power back to the people. and i think folks should look at that respectfully and try to give us some coverage accordingly. >> we're going to watch what the president does and says. when the president speaks at the cia and says things that are not true. when his press secretary goes to the podium, repeats things that are not true, is that okay with the president? and isn't it our responsibility in the press to call, to hold them to account? to hold the press secretary to account for saying factual things from the white house podium? >> are you referring to the crowd size again? when you say thing that are not factual. >> what the president said yesterday at the cia. the press was falsely reporting at a feud. that was based on the president's statements. what sean spicer said yesterday from the white house podium, he cited wrong facts about metro ridership.
said this was far and away the most viewed inaugural ever. that is not true if you look at the nielsen ratings from 2009 or 1981. if you look at the pictures of the crowd. that is factually not true. all we're saying is -- >> we're talking about the same topic in a week where the president is talking about replacing obama care. it has helped millions of people lose their health plans. he's going to meet with foreign leaders. we're still talking about crowd size. i'm a pollster by trade. i'm into things that are quantifiable. here are the numbers that matter. the numbers are the 2600 counties he won. the 31 of 50 states. and by the way, the other numbers that matter that i didn't hear from the women marching around washington yesterday are the 16.1 million women in poverty. the millions of people who don't have health care after eight years of president obama. donald trump has been president the for about eight hours. president obama has been here for eight years. if you want to talk about numbers that matter.
it's quantifying. the women that have slid into poverty. their children who deserve a better life. i want to talk about things that are quantifiable. not metro riders and crowd sizes. >> again, it was the president who brought up crowd size. one final question on this. does the president believe it is important for his press secretary to be factual from the podium and to take questions from the podium? >> yes, he does. but i want to tell you something else. it's completely irresponsible if not worse for members of the media to be calling our press secretary a liar and worse. on twitter, in social media, in print. that is not the way to start relationships with the press. i believe in a free and open press. people have to cover the presidency. respect the office and its current occupant. we need to it be a two-way street. we have not been treated very well. this man is the president of the united states. if people would just go back, george, and listen to and watch his inaugural address again, that goes for everybody. calling for unification.
being aspirational. talking about giving power back to the people. i know he's coming to washington, d.c. in a way no one ever has. and the institutions. and the lethargy. people are wondering what will happen there. we need to have a two-way street with the press. i look forward to that. i appreciate the platform on your network and others and look forward to an open and honest relationship. we can't invite the press pool into the first day of the oval office with the president of the united states signing executive orders and then a big lie told about the bust of martin luther king jr. days after our president, donald trump, met with martin luther king iii in new york and had an incredibly powerful and constructive conversation. with martin luther king jr.'s son saying he believes in this president and he wants to heal and unify the nation. people from the press writing snarky articles that are false. it has to go both ways.
and it has to start right now. >> and yesterday, the president started it with his speech. the president's press secretary started with his statement in the briefing room, called the press reckless, wrong, and shameful. you're right. we've spent enough time of this right now. i want to get to a question on obamacare. you had the president's executive order signed on friday. a lot of people are trying to figure out why exactly does that sneen the obama administration chose to stop the employer mandate. will president trump stop the individual mandate? >> he wants to get rid of the obamacare penalty almost immediately. that is something that is really strangling a lot of americans to have to pay a penalty for not buying health care? >> he'll stop enforcing that mandate? >> he may. look, we want to make very clear to everyone. those who are relying upon coverage will not lose it. many people have already lost health care. millions already lost their health care because they either visit and can't use it because of the explosive,
skyrocketing premiums. or they lost their doctors or insurance plans or access to health care through obamacare. we hear from the millions of people every day that have lost their health care, their plans, basically got drilled down to 28 hours a week so they can't access the health care that employers are supposed to provide. we want to help those millions of people. we have received through our transition over 225,000 comments and pleas from americans. many of those -- i have read many of them. they have to deal with health care. he's going to replace this with a plan that allows you to buy insurance across state lines. it is centered around the patient. and i wish i had heard more of that from the women yesterday here in washington. why aren't they talking about the millions of women who live in poverty, who don't have health care after eight years under president obama? >> what did the president think of that march? >> i discussed it with him briefly. we respect people's first amendment rights.
i frankly didn't see the point. you have a day after, he's uplifting and unifying. you have folks here being on a diatribe where they could have requested a dialogue. nobody called me and said, hey, can we have a dialogue? you have celebrities using profanity-laced thoughts. you have a prominent singer worth hundreds of millions of dollars, not going over to a women's shelter in washington, d.c., to write a check, but instead she's thought of quote burning down the white house. >> talking about ma don ma? >> this is destructive. i read an article or two that the secret service may be investigating that. we just had an election. and a lot of what i heard from this march yesterday in washington we heard all through the election. that whole messaging, and their candidate, hillary clinton, lost. 29 to 30 million women voted for donald trump. their voices are heard as well. they should be respected. i just thought they missed an opportunity to be about solutions and to really fight for those millions of women
whose kids are trapped in failing schools. who don't have access to health care. who don't have access to an economic affordable life. and those are the -- those are the people that we're here for. the forgotten men and women and their children. i just thought it was such a contrast to have president trump deliver an inaugural address so uplifting and aspirational and inclusive. if you open your heart to patriotism there's no room for -- and the next day, you have the profanity-laced comments coming from the podium. the whole celebrity thing didn't work for hillary clinton. she tried that in her campaign and it failed. and the other thing i would just mention, george. guess who was conspicuous by their absence yesterday? president obama. secretary clinton. they were up on the platform applauding and embracing president trump. they were not here marching with women. >> final question. you mentioned a couple hundred thousand people who sent in petitions on health care. talking about health care. you have more than 200,000 petitioning the white house
calling on president trump to release his full tax returns with all information needed to verify the emoluments clause. compliance. when over a 100,000 petition, that triggers a white house response. so what is the white house response? >> he's not going to release his tax returns. we litigated this all through the election. people didn't care. they voted for him. let me make this clear. most americans are focused on what their tax returns will look like while president trump is in office. not what his look like. you know full well that president trump and his family are complying with all the ethical rules. everything they need to do to step away from his businesses. and be a full-time president. but on this matter of tax returns, people keep -- they want to keep litigating what happened in the campaign. people want to know that they're going to get tax relief. he's promised that. we hope that the democratic senate will support his tax relief package.
the way they did in 2001 for president bush, george. they passed tax relief by june of that year. the president has appointed cabinet nominees. only two have been confirmed. it's time for democrats to step up and stop talking about bipartisanship and be bipartisan when it comes to passing the tax reform so americans' tax returns look better this year. we need a treasury secretary. commerce secretary. a new government that works. we hope they'll meet the call very soon. >> i know the office of government ethics has cleared jared kushner. saying he's in full compliance. there are questions of the overall conflict of interest rules with the white house right now and the president. we don't have time for that today. kellyanne conway, thank you very much. >> thank you, george. coming up, a response from the opposition. democratic minority leader chuck schumer is here. also republican john mccain.
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democratic leader in the senate, chuck schumer. thank you for joining us. >> hi, george. >> we just heard from kellyanne conway.
we want to talk about the president's statement at the cia. it drew some fire from former cia director john brennan. she fired right back and said it was remarkable. >> here's what i would say to stand on sacred ground, the wall which commemorates cia agents who gave their lives to the country and then talk about what he talked about was so, so wrong. president trump ought to realize. he's not campaigning anymore. he's president. and instead of talking about how many people showed up at his inauguration, he ought to be talking about how many people are going to stay in the middle class and move into the middle class. >> what did you make of his inaugural speech? kellyanne conway say it was unifying. >> it was not at all. he spoke only to his supporters. the theme is to reach out to people who didn't vote for you. and of course, the majority of people didn't vote for donald trump. instead, he just spoke to his supporters. the other thing that bothered me, as much as the narrowness of
it and the darkness of america that he portrayed was this. i think he's trying to use populist rhetoric to cover up a right wing agenda. if you look at his cabinet, they're far from the populism he talked about. people like price who want to end medicare as we know it by privatizing. mulvaney cut to smithereens. out of every program even research for cancer. devos. who wants to end public education funding. not end it but greatly curtail it. these are people who have been chosen forthe cabinet aside from all the conflicts of interest. >> the white house is saying you're not acting fairly by moving slowly. president obama had far more cabinet officials in place on his first day. >> this is a different cabinet than we have ever seen. we call it a swamp cabinet. billionaires and bankers. so many of them have potential
conflicts of interest. the one obama cabinet appointee who had this kind of wealth and potential conflicts of interest took six months. these people have to divest themselves of conflicts of interest. that's the law before they come in. they were not properly prepared. many of them, they tried to hold hearings without even their paper. their conflict of interest plans. the ethics reports. the fbi reports being available. advise and consent doesn't mean ram it through. if i were the republicans and president trump, i would want to ram the nominees through because so many have conflicts of interest. and so many of them have views inimkabl to what the american people want and trump campaigned on. >> you mentioned the cabinet. what about president trump himself? you heard kellyanne conway say he's not releasing his tax returns. he's sticking by that position. some ethics experts believe his plan to divest of his business, to give it over to his sons, not divest, did not go far enough and he'll be in violation of the
emoluments clause. is that your view? >> well, the emoluments clause has never been tested. we have never had a president who has refused to give up his personal investments and other things. my advice to president trump is get rid of it. it could cause you real trouble. we don't know if foreign aid comes from you know, goes to a country that has trump hotels in it. whether any of these clauses are violated. you know, when you run for president, and he did it willingly, you have certain obligations. one of them would be to avoid even the appearance of conflicts of interest. he ought to get rid of all this stuff. it's not right to keep it and be president. and he's risking a lot. >> hundreds of thousands of marchers here in new york yesterday. >> i was there. i marched. >> were you comfortable with everything you heard? you heard kellyanne conway right there and i think she spoke to a lot of people hen she talked about the comments from
madonna about burning down the white house. >> i don't agree with those comments. the celebrities don't matter in the march. i marched in new york. i didn't see a single celebrity. i saw average people. worried about women's health. if they appeal the affordable care act. women will no longer be required to be treated equally. they repeal planned parenthood, women's health is at risk. they're talking about undoing roe v. wade. women had the right to march. the depth and sincerity of the protesters that i saw really fortified me. i got a lot of strength from this and i think there's going to be a lot of american who will really are willing to be much more active than they were before because they're worried about where trump is headed. >> you saw president trump sign the executive order on friday night on obamacare. kellyanne conway said he may stop endorsing the individual mandate. >> they don't know what to do with the affordable care act. who would have thought two weeks into this, democrats would be united and on offense and the republicans would be on defense?
the republicans say they're going to repeal. they don't know what to replace it with. i think his executive order exemplified that. they didn't say anything. keep the good things, get rid of the bad things but obey the law. they don't know what to do. they're like the dog that caught the bus. >> the president says he may seek a deal where he would lift the sanctions in return for an -- a nuclear arms reduction with russia. is that a deal you could sign on to? >> that would be horrible. senator cardin and i are introducing legislation to say that before the president could reduce sanctions on russia it would have to be passed by congress. >> he has that authority right now, doesn't he? >> he does. we have bipartisan support. senators mccain and graham are supporting this legislation. and for us to repeal sanctions given what russia has done in ukraine and threatened the baltics. and now, they have clearly tried to intervene in our election. whether or not it had an effect,
that is something -- that is a danger that we have never faced to this extent in our elections. we repeal sanctions, it tells russia go ahead and interfere. it tells china a, iran. that would be terrible. this legislation, i hope, will get bipartisan support. a mirror thing happened a few years ago. republicans were worried that president obama would lift the iran sanctions. they introduced legislation saying he couldn't do it without congress okay. got 90 votes. i voted for it. >> final question. we now know the intelligence agencies are looking into possible contacts between any trump associates and the russians during the campaign. kellyanne conway said the white house would not interfere. with this investigation. are you confident that's the case? >> i hope so. it would be dramatically bad if they did. bottom line is. we should have a thorough investigation of all the allegations. they are really serious. >> thank you, senator
schumer. >> thank you, george. good to be here again.
and let's take this right to senator john mccain. he joins us as well this morning. thank you for joining us this morning. you heard senator schumer invoke your name on the issue of russia. russian sanctions. what is your take on that possible deal that president trump has floated? >> well, i'm deeply concerned about -- our relationship with russia. i believe that the president has around him a national security team that is very concerned as well. all of them, whether it's general mattis or general kelly or general flynn or my good friend, dan coates, view russia as our major challenge. they've committed war crimes they have. you have airplanes with precision weapons striking hospitals in aleppo and slaughtering innocent men, women, and children, you're committing a war crime. we need more sanctions against russia. we should not relax them. if we have peace through strength. and, by the way, rebuilding our military is one thing i'm excited about this administration and general mattis.
but, if we don't keep those sanctions on and even increase them, it will encourage putin, who is a war criminal. >> when you mention the president's national security team, you didn't mention the nominee for secretary of state, rex tillerson. have you decided how you'll vote? >> i will be voting in favor of his nomination. i have had numerous conversations with him. my concerns have been about our relations with russia. and his past relations, i believe, i'm very cautious about this. but i believe that mr. tillerson understands the importance of a steadfast and strong relationship with -- >> how did he assure you? >> he talked to me a lot about his views about russia. about the events that have taken place. about the fact of what his duties were as the head of one of the world's largest corporations. listen, this wasn't an easy call.
but i also believe that when there's doubt, the president, the incoming president, gets the benefit of the doubt. that's the way i have treated every president i have had the obligation to vote for or against as a member of the united states senate. >> and on the issue of russia, are you confident the investigations, by the intelligence agencies, the investigation by the fbi, the congressional investigations, are going to get to the bottom of what happened in this election? >> it may. but the best way to do it is with a select committee or a select commission. what the russians did, was imperil the very fundamental of a democracy. and that is to affect the election. i don't believe there is evidence that they did. but the attempt was very sophisticated. the attempt was much more far-reaching than we had ever anticipated. and so, there has to be a full and complete investigation. that should guide our relations to a large degree with russia. >> you heard both kellyanne
conway and senator schumer weigh in. on both the president's inaugural speech and the speech yesterday at the cia. what is your tame? >> well, my take is, obviously, i disagreed with some of the things that the president-elect said. but the point to me is, not what he's saying. we keep reacting to things he says and his tweets. what he is doing is important. i have the utmost confidence in general mattis, general flynn, general kelly, dan coates. i couldn't have picked a better team. so i'm confident that he'll listen to them and be guided by them. as far as this back and forth on his tweets, that's an endless rabbit hole. >> you say you have utmost confidence in his team. do you have utmost confidence in president trump? >> i do not know, george. i do not know, because he's made so many comments that are contradictory. but i think the fact that he's appointed and nominated these outstanding individuals is bound
to be an encouraging sign. i trust them and believe many them. i have worked with them over many years. >> senator schumer said he thinks president trump has to go farther of getting rid of his businesses. he thinks he has to fully divest. if he doesn't, he's putting himself at risk. do you agree? >> i think that's up to more experts than me. clear i, i think his tax returns have always been a tradition that should be observed. by the way, on this march yesterday, it's also a testimony to the power of social networking. this wasn't big on abc news. but it was networked all over the country. it was a remarkable turnout. >> what did you think of it? >> i think it was remarkable. and i think it's an urgent plea for us all to sit down together. the world is on fire, george. we have seen -- we're in more danger than we have been and the -- our adversaries are increasing their military capabilities dramatically. closing the gap.
we need to work together, as we do on the armed services committee, i'm happy to say. >> senator mccain, thank you for joining us this morning. >> thank you. we'll be right back with "the roundtable." c'mohappy birthday! i survived a heart attack. i'm doing all i can to keep from having another one. and i'm taking brilinta. for people who've been hospitalized for a heart attack. i take brilinta with a baby aspirin. no more than one hundred milligrams as it affects how well it works. brilinta helps keep my platelets from sticking together and forming a clot. brilinta reduced the chance of another heart attack. or dying from one. it worked better than plavix. don't stop taking brilinta without talking to your doctor since stopping it too soon increases your risk of clots in your stent, heart attack, stroke, and even death. brilinta may cause bruising or bleeding more easily,
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matthew dowd. along with republican strategist alex castellanos. democratic strat just stephanie cutter. hard to begin, jon karl. you saw my back and forth with kellyanne conway. i am the first person to say i don't care about crowd size either. we had these speeches yesterday that were just not factual. >> look, on his very first appearance in the briefing room, sean spicer went in and uttered at least three things that were demonstrably false. he left without taking a question. i have never seen a white house press secretary do that. that said, i think we need to be careful as reporters and as journalists not to take the bait and get into an end less discussion about issues that are trivial. how many people were there? the crowd size, not important. he had a huge crowd. >> telling the truth is important. >> especially from that podium.
sean is not an rnc spokesperson. a campaign spokesperson. he's a spokesperson for the white house. credibility matters. >> in "the new york times" people suggesting donald trump thought sean spicer went too far. so already, you have his colleagues throwing him under the bus. >> it will be a tough job for the next four years to be the spokesman for this administration. president trump's style is different than we have seen in any other presidential leader. he pushes the ball well past the 50 yard line. he's a negotiator. not a reciter of facts. he'll buy the car and say it's the worst car in the world. >> is that acceptable? >> well, it's a different way he's used to dealing with the world. that's the worst car in the world. i'm not going to give you all that money for it. the germ of truth is he's trying to tell you something else. just looking at it on the micro level won't help you. understand what's really going on in the trump administration. >> i think that's where jon is right. we shouldn't take the bait.
here we are, having a whole conversation. and leads in the papers and all that about what trump said. >> i couldn't disagree more. if he doesn't tell the truth, what are we supposed to do? >> but what he's managed to do was to minimize the incredible demonstrations yesterday all over the world. of women turning out by more than a million. and instead of that being what everybody is talking about today, it's donald trump again. with his -- >> that's the way to deal with this is, what's the larger truth here? >> yeah. >> and we miss that a lot. >> except that this cannot be -- maybe it is the new normal. where a press secretary takes the podium and blatantly lies. when a president goes to the cia as the commander in chief and blatantly lies. but it shouldn't be. now we're in a position where every time sean spicer takes the podium or the president says something, they don't need to
just be fact-checked. you have to presume that they're not telling the truth. i have worked for two presidents. i have spoken for two white houses. that has never, ever been the case. >> i may be a little old fashioned. but i actually believe if you live and work in our house and you work on our payroll, and you take oaths, then integrity matters in this. >> sure. >> what we always see with spin is the three sisters of spin. miss represent, miss lead, and miss stays. what we're seeing now is mr. lie. mr. lying in the course of this. what you heard from donald trump and you have heard this all the way up until he's president. now you're hearing it as president. and from sean spicer. are you going to believe me or your lying eyes? what they should have said yesterday is, thomas jefferson said, the highest form of patriotism is dissent. what we saw with the protesters is what makes mek america great.
peaceful protests. it would have totally deflated the issue. >> it would have given them legitimacy. he doesn't want to do that. we're in a real bind here. because we really do need to call out untruths. absolutely. but we also can't let him be in a position where he dominates everything so that other news does not -- >> i take that point. let me put this question back to jon karl. it wasn't just not telling the truth from the podium. it's when questioned, he says the people questioning him are not telling the truth and everything that is a question is fake news. >> yeah. the reason he has this obsession over what seems like such a trivial issue on the crowd size is that every step, donald trump has been, his legitimacy has been questioned. first, is he going to run for president? he will never run. he's leading in the polls. that won't last. we'll beat him at the convention. we'll beat him in the electoral college. >> the russians. >> he is the president.
the legitimate president. he'll be better for him if he moves beyond this. >> the war has not ended. the campaign has not ended. donald trump has had no honeymoon because there's been no marriage. that speech he gave was -- not a call for unity. it was a call to overthrow the establishment that he sees, and i would agree with him, has failed in washington. donald trump is operating in an environment where the war goes on. with the media. the washington establishment. it's not just a question of who gets their facts right. he knows they're trying to undermine him and -- >> define reality. in some cases by denying it. >> right. to jon's point that he feels like he doesn't get the credit for being a legitimate president. that's -- we can psychoanalyze donald trump for the entirety of the show. he should have therapy over the legitimacy thing. he's now the commander in chief
of all americans. as a commander in chief, what you do and what you say has real consequences. our friend, david axelrod said, the day we walked in the white house, now what we say and do, we can send armies marching and stocks dropping. we saw that with donald trump the other day. he caused the dollar to drop. there are consequences. >> pretty striking that john mccain said he doesn't know if he has confidence in donald trump. >> he said clearly, i have confidence in people he's appointed. he said clearly, i don't know if i have confidence in the president of the united states. the president of the united states it's okay to acknowledge facts. it's okay to acknowledge, you have lost the popular vote. it's okay to acknowledge there were 3 million, 4 million people that marched around the country mainly in opposition to what he is and who he stands for. at some point, you have to be the person that is bigger. and what i have watched in the course of this. most of us have said, we're going to give him a chance. let's give him a chance. he's got elected now. let's watch his transition.
the transition didn't turn out that great in terms of how he was going to unify. let's watch the inaugural address. every single step of the way, now as president of the united states, instead of getting bigger and the office holding him up, he's gotten smaller in the course of this. more petty. go to the cia and have a petty argument about crowd sizes and attack the press, you're not being big. you're being small. >> something is likely to happen that really gets his attention. because, as president obama kept saying, you get in this office, and things start to change. and, i think that -- some -- some consequence, as stephanie said, will occur. we saw it with president clinton also. you know, and, um, and i think that with any luck, at some point, he gets the grace. but it's not been -- >> and on that point, jon karl, most presidencies are defined by what happens to them and how they react. >> even on what he's doing in terms of his agenda.
he's set forth a bold agenda. he's breaking not just with the previous administration. he's breaking with the republican leadership. that inaugural speech was a declaration of independence from both parties. we don't know how this is going to end. >> now he has to fill in the blanks. >> his success is not going to be determined by what he said about crowd size. his success is going to be determined by whether he can transform washington. and whether that change that he brings, whether that grows the economy and makes america safer in the world. there's no way he could have given the speech friday that would have unified the country. he's going to take the country in a very different direction. >> that leads to the question about the marches. is this going to turn into a movement that puts pressure on president trump and democrats? >> it puts pressure on congressional republicans. and i think that they sent a pretty big notice to everybody. democrats, republicans, the president of the united states yesterday.
when millions of women, not just in this country. >> and men. >> and some men. a few brave men. >> more than a few. and children, frankly. >> and women of all ages. the pictures. >> the march to say, we're going to be heard. our rights matter. we don't want planned parenthood defunded. that's where we get our health care. we don't want to be left out in the cold when you repeal the affordable care act. we don't want our rights rolled back. these are serious things that republicans in congress most particularly need to -- >> i think it's really with any -- with the enthusiasm that existed yesterday. which was truly remarkable. >> it doesn't last. >> that's the question. i think they really can create a movement. because they've come to -- a lot of women have come to understand that you can't just show up and say, i'm unhappy. you have to then go out and do something. and there's a lot of talk about more women running for office. more women supporting people in office. all that. turning it into a political movement.
>> i think that i'm just going to repeat something donald trump said for the last 18 months. and kellyanne conway said. and everybody around them said. you're missing what is going on. look at the crowd sizes. right? as i look at what happened yesterday, we cannot underestimate the idea that in city across city, across the united states, across the globe. it was very young. i walked through some of it here and in washington. people never involved before. in all of the movements, they don't start with a broad strategy and what are you going to do and how are you going to do it? they start with a moment. it surges. what happens from that, people figure out the strategy. >> you know what saw that? john mccain. he brought it up with you to send a signal that, we heard you. so, let's indeed see what happens from here. both in terms of whether that's a permanent organizing opportunity or whether what they did yesterday -- >> but i think these women -- >> it's not a creation of donald trump in this moment. the gender gap, it used to just be in the home in the good old days. now, of course, battles for
power are fought with power resides. as power has moved into the economy for working women and into politics. we want our government to be a nurturing and more feminine government and yet a tough daddy bear that enforces strict rules. the gender war has moved there. this was the most divisive election in terms of gender. we have seen. i think it will only get worse. >> it was mostly -- i think what we're seeing, i know donald trump constantly talks about this being a moment of change, a moment of change. what has gone on this is a reaction to change. what donald trump is is not a movement of change. it's a reaction to global change. it's a total reaction to global change. transformational change in the world, transportation, technology. most of donald trump's voters. alex, most of donald trump's voters want to go back. >> right. >> no, that's not true. >> america great again. >> it may not be true. that is all we have time for
thearea. the big problems people are fiesing if they're trying to get to or from tahoe. good morning, wow, isn't that gorgeous? the rain, the heavy rain has ended, but we still have run-off and some debris flow and flooding to pass along to you. more scattered showers today. i'll have a look at the entire fast next on the nbc 7 morning news at 9:00.