tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC May 24, 2013 10:00am-11:01am PDT
i was spotting, but i had already gone through menopause. these symptoms may be nothing... but they could be early warning signs of a gynecologic cancer, such as cervical, ovarian, or uterine cancer. feeling bloated for no reason. that's what i remember. seeing my doctor probably saved my life. warning signs are not the same for everyone. if you think something's wrong... see your doctor. ask about gynecologic cancer. and get the inside knowledge. right now on "andrea mitchell reports," president obama chooses the hallowed naval academy graduation to call for zero tolerance for sexual assaults in the military. >> those who commit sexual saumts are not only committing a crime, they threaten the trust and discipline that makes our military strong. that's why we had to be determined to stop these crimes. this after he proposed
refocusing the battle against terrorism and limiting the drone war yesterday. despite repeated interruption of of his speech from an anti-war heckler. >> you are commander-in-chief. you can close guantanamo today. can you take the drones out of the hands of the c.i.a.? >> i love my country. i love the rule of law. >> these are tough issues. and the suggestion that we can gloss over them is wrong. forced out, after taking the fifth, lois lernor becomes the third irs official to be replaced in the expanding targeting controversy. leani ining out -- hedge fu philanthropist after saying that mothers can't be successful wall street traders. >> as soon as that baby's lips touch that girl's bosom, forget it. every single investment idea,
every desire to understand, every desire to understand what's going to make this go up or go down is going to be overwhelmed by the most beautiful experience, which a man will never, which a man will never share, about a mother's connection between that mother and that baby. and i just have seen it happen over and over. >> we'll discussion. split decision, the boy scouts vote to allow gay members, but leaders remain shut out. >> we need full inclusion for parents and for adults. it doesn't make any sense to tell me an 18-year-old eagle scout, because you turned 18, you're no longer fit to be a scout. survivor's story, the principal of plaza towers elementary school tells nbc's kate snow about the moment of tornado hit. >> i could hear the air duct crash down.
on the pipe. and i could hear the other four ladies in there. and that's when i started to yell. >> what did you yell? >> in god's name, go away. go away. i yelled it. four or five times. and then it was gone. >> guys, count me down for five, okay? ready five, four, three, two, one. [ cheers and applause ] >> and back on the boardwalk. seven months after sandy, new jersey governor and today's part-time co-anchor, chris christie reopens the jersey shore, just in time for the memorial day weekend. good day, i'm andrea mitchell in washington, a day after trying to redefine and narrow the war
america has been fighting against terrorism since 9/11, president obama made the case for a more limited drone war in his speech at the naval academy graduates today. tony lincoln is deputy national security adviser to the president and joins me from the white house lawn. tony, thank you very much. first, the drone war. and how the president tried to redefine it. he, he redefined it to include a new standard of near certainty that there would be no collateral damage in using drones. is that a, either reliable or reasonable standard? some would say that it is too high a standard. how do you live up to that? >> andrea, first of all, thanks for having me on. we got to put this in context. first of all, when it comes to dealing with terrorists, our strong preference is to be able to capture them and interrogate them and detain them. and we also hope and are working with other countries to give them the capacity to do that. but there may be instances where
the terrorists are in too remote a place or simply too dangerous to send forces in. in this that instance, the drone has been an effective tool and a legal tool. but it's also a tool that we have to put limits on to make sure it doesn't get abused. what the president has done is codified standards that we built up to make sure it's used in a smart, sustainable way. the big question is the one that you raise. which is the one of civilian casualties and there are different estimates about whether civilians have been killed in the course of using drones. the bottom line is they have. and the question is, what can we do to make sure that the greatest extent possible, that doesn't happen? that's what we've codified. those are the measures we have put in place. you have to put this in context what are the alternatives. instead of using drones, we could use traditional air power, we could launch missiles from far away or send invading armies. these are far less precise tools that would have far more civilian casualties and gets into wars we couldn't get out of. what the president has done very effectively is build up clear
standards, clear procedures, he's codified them to make sure we have an effective tool, but one used in a careful and sustainable way. >> is the standard of near certainty against civilian deaths realistic? let's just say hypothetically and you were in the room when the strike was taken against osama bin laden in abadbad. you were aware that women and children would be in the house in that expanded family. would you have not sent in the navy sae.e.a.l.s, knowing there could be women or children who had died along with osama bin laden. >> what the president tried to do yesterday was to bring the american people into the situation room for exactly the kind of conversations that we had. in dealing with these incredibly difficult, life-or-death issues, for our citizens, for our troops and also for people who may be in the vicinity of the
terrorists that we're targeting. and we have applied the highest possible standard. which is northeastern certainty. but there can't be certainty. we can't get to that. but we have, we have a standard of near certainty and all i can tell you is when we are deliberating, deciding, when the president is deciding whether to act. the focus on this is intense and we do everything possible to achieve that standard. >> i want to ask you about the leak investigations. he said in his speak yesterday that he's, he's trying to get answers from the justice department. why does he need answers from the justice department about something that had been going on for so long? isn't he aware more broadly of the way these leaks are pursued and the way journalists have been swept up in it? >> well andrea, i can't comment on a specific investigation, but i can say this, it goes to what the president said yesterday, we have to get the balance right between protecting information that if it were released, would endanger our people, endanger our soldiers. and protecting our journalists
to make sure that they can do our jobs. that is fundamental to our democracy. and so the justice department has standards that it's applied. the president has asked and the attorney general has agree dodd review those standards. in consultation with the media and report to him in 45 days. at the same time, the president believes strongly that we need a media shield law to make sure that there are no abuses in going after journalists. the bottom line is this -- we need to be focused on the folks who are breaking the law by revealing classified information, not journalists who are doing their jobs and we have to get that balance right and the president is determined to do that. >> i know the president repeated that he wants to close guantanamo, that's been his aspiration for years now. but congress keeps blocking him. can he, should he do something by executive order even though congress is making it so difficult? it's such a high bar to return those prisoners to yemen. you've got a hunger strike continuing of 102 or 103 prisoners in guantanamo,
detainees. is there a point at which he should ignore congress and try to take action and dare congress to insist that he keep the place open? >> well first of all, context, remember, the bush administration released 530 prisoners from guantanamo. we released more than 60 before congress imposed restrictions that make it very difficult, if not impossible to go forward. and there are 16 6 prisoners remaining in guantanamo. so guantanamo has become a symbol that we flout the law, it's a recruiting tool for terrorists and ex-tremists. we're spending almost $1 million per prisoner per year to keep them there, as well as the upkeep for the facility. there's no rational reason not to end this. the fact of the matter is, we've been very successful in prosecuting those responsible for terrorism or involved in terrorism-related offenses. we've never had a single person escape from a super-max facility in the united states or from a military prison. and we've had success in sending
prisoners to other countries so the president is determined to proceed with this. he announced a series of measures that he will be taking. we want to work with congress to end the unnecessary restrictions. but beyond that. he is taking action himself. for example, we're ending the moratorium on sending prisoners back to yemen. and we're going to be looking at that on a case-by-case basis. he named a senior envoy from the state department and the defense department whose only job will be looking to working with third countries to take prisoners back. we have a, we've determined to make sure that prisoners get the hearings that they are entitled to by law. and the hope is that we will be able to finally close the facility. we've got to get started. we've got to get moving on moving out the remaining 166. >> tony blinken, deputy national security adviser, thank you very much. >> thanks, andrea. joining me here in studio is michael leiter, nbc news
terrorism expert and the former director of the national counterterrorism center. the president said that all of these years after 9/11, that it's time to move on and redefine this. and in fact, focus on the current threats, the lone wolf, boston, what we saw happen in london. but how, how is he redefining it? we've yet to hear more about exactly what the new strategy is going to be going forward. >> i think the president really did do a very good thing by trying to give some context. the threat has changed. it's evolved. and we face a very different level of threat from pakistan and elsewhere overseas. and as you said, the home-grown threat has gotten worse over the past four or five years. he talks a lot about using our elements of national power. so making sure he can still use drones, making sure that we're engaging overseas. but then also trying to reduce the attraction of the ideology. frankly, beyond that, he doesn't give a lot of detail about how programs will change. how budgets will change. and i think that's the tbd here.
>> and in fact, turning the ship around at the c.i.a., the c.i.a. has now since 9/11 been a paramilitary organization. as much as it is a spy-gathering, let's find secrets. it needs to be shifted very dramatically. and you've got john brennan there, who has the president's complete alliance and trust. but this is a big deal. >> it is. the c.i.a., pre-9/11 was about strategic intelligence, targets like china and russia. and post 9/11 became a paramilitary force. and we have to say, an incredibly effective one. it is largely the c.i.a. that disrupted al qaeda overseas in places like pakistan. john brennan is an incredibly strong leader. he has the president's trust in the c.i.a., he knows that. john is going to reduce that effort towards counterterrorism to some extent and move it back towards the traditional intelligence roles that it really does need. >> agencies don't give back money. if we're not going to be involved in as big a drone war,
is the c.i.a. going to say, here's my black budget, which we can't even tell the american people about. only two committees really look at it but you can take $100 billion back. >> money is guarded more than anything else in this city. and i think what we don't know yet is, is when the president says, the threat has come down, we've got a more distributed threat here in the united states, the c.i.a. is going to do less drones, and the military will do more. what does that mean for the fourses? how does it shift? until those resources actually shift, none of this truly takes hold in the federal bureaucracy. >> michael leiter thank you very much. up next, a major milestone for the boy scouts, stay with us. [ phil ] when you have joint pain and stiffness...
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said reflect as desire to quote serve every kit. but even though one barrier is gone, the scouts left the ban in place on gay scout leaders. the reaction has been mixed. >> it's a very difficult decision for a lot of people. we're moving forward together. >> i have an opportunity to finish everything that i started so many years ago. >> i'm so excited. even though it doesn't affect me, it's what i've been working for. >> when the boy scouts of america are going to put the interests of activists over and above the safety and security of our young boys, that's a program and a leadership that we can no longer trust. >> zach walt is an eagle scout and founder of the group scouts for equality and he joins me now. zach, thanks very much for being with us. ush initial reaction to the decision? >> we're excited. it's an important step forward. it's not enough. and we certainly agree with jennifer that this is not going to be the end of our campaign for parents like mine, i'm the son of a lesbian couple, the ban would still keep them from the
program but it's a step in the right direction. we're confident that this means that the organization is will to change and have full inclusion soon. >> what about the mixed message that is being sent by this split decision, though? the mixed message both to scouts and to the kids who are gay, who now see that their leaders can't be. >> yeah, well it's one of the reasons why we're confident that we'll see full inclusion sooner rather than later. under the new policy we're going to see 15, 16, 17-year-old gay eagle scouts come up through the program. get their eagle scout award, the highest rank that scouting has to offer. the effective leaders in the scouting units, we think that the parents and the scout masters will look at the kids and see these are good role models. we don't want to prevent them from being leaders once they turn 18. >> there is also, a possible threat to scouting, because you've got religious groups who support more than 70% of the troops ott there divided on this the latter day saints, the mormons say they have no objection to this, but other
groups are fiercely opposed. >> the biggest opponents so far has been the southern baptist convention, which are threatening to walk away. but they haven't since the vote made a formal statement one way or the other. earlier this week, the catholic church sent our group, scouts for equality, a letter saying they're excited about the future of scouting, regardless of the way the vote went. so we're feeling confident. there will be a few folks who walk away and we're very sorry about that. we don't want to kick anybody out of the program. we want scouting to be a home to everybody. but if they choose to do that that's their prerogative. it's a free country. but we want to make sure that scouting is accessible to everybody who wants to be part. >> as pete williams pointed out yesterday, the girl scouts have long taken this step, it's not an issue for them. thank you. we have sad news it share with you today this is personal. haynes johnson, the pulitzer prize-winning long-time correspondent for the "washington post" died this morning. he had a heart attack in
bethesda, maryland. in 1966, johnson won the pulitzer for distinguished national reporting. of the civil rights struggle in selma, alabama. the award marked the first time in pulitzer prize history that a father and son had both received awards for reporting. his father, malcolm johnson won back in 1949 for his "new york sun" series, time on the waterfront, which was the basis for the academy award-winning film, "on the water front." haines johnson was 81 years old and he was a true gentleman. ♪ i' 'm a hard, hard ♪ worker every day. ♪
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i love to golf. ♪ [ grunts ] yowza! that's why i eat belvita at breakfast. it's made with delicious ingredients and carefully baked to release steady energy that lasts... we are golfing now, buddy! [ grunts ] ...all morning long. i got it! for the win! uno mas! getting closer! belvita breakfast biscuits -- steady energy to do what i do all morning long. i believe we must keep information secret. that protects our operations and our people in the field. to do so, we must enforce consequences for those who break the law. and breach their commitment to protect classified information. but a free press is also essential for our democracy. that's who we are. and i'm troubled by the
possibility that leak investigations may chill the investigative journalism that holds government accountable. >> president obama tried to justify his administration's aggressive investigations into leaks. sweeping up news organizations, though, in the process, "new york times" chief washington correspondent, david sanger joins me now. david is one of them. david i don't know if you can talk about the personal side of this. but your reaction to the president's tweaking, i guess you would say of the journalism investigations and calling for a report from the attorney general, though one would ask, one would wonder how could it have been ordered without him knowing broadly what the policy is. >> well, andrea, it's interesting, the president decided to reestablish what he basically laid out as a balancing test between trying to protect secrets for people who have access to classified information. and also, protect the first amendment issues here.
and the need to have a very free and vibrant press. and as you know from the work you do so well on msnbc, you can't report on the hardest national security problems the united states is facing today, unless you are tripping into classified information. there is so much that is classified, overclassified these days. to talk about iran or afghanistan or the drone program, you can't do it without getting into areas that somewhere, somehow in the u.s. government is considered classified. even the reporting on the president's speech yesterday, the good reporting on it, then went on to describe the classified memorandum that he signed, that sort of implements the principles he laid out in the speech. the question is how do you make the balancing test work? he didn't take us that far. >> just to play devil's advocate here, walter pinkus in the
"washington post" this week pointed out that the original a.p. leak was a serious one and even though the administration went public with it and briefed the president on it after the fact, they lost the asset of a covert operative inside yemen and someone who might have been more useful had the story not begun to bubble up. >> i read walter's column, he's a fabulous reporter and you know i've got to believe that there was, if he said there was damage done by this, there probably was some. if you hear what a.p. said, they held the story for five or six days. and then they say that they ran it when it became clear that they thought the white house was about to go announce all of the details, anyway. i don't know where the truth lies in that, because i wasn't involved in any of that. >> the operative was supposedly withdrawn by that point, but the saudis and the british and the other intelligence agencies were seriously burned by the fact that we had to pull that guy out. but that being said, does that justify the broad sweep of the a.p. telephones?
>> there are two questions here. one is what most responsible mainstream news organizations do. i know you do it, at nbc and we do at "the new york times," if there's a major story that involves serious risk to national security. you go to someplace in the government and you ask a knowledgeable people and you say look if there are issues that will put someone's life at risk. if there are operational issues, tell us now before we publish. before we broadcast. and usually over the years, across democratic and republican administrations, there have been a channel for doing that. you and i have both been involved in those at various points. >> that's the difference, that did not happen in this case. we're going to have to leave it there, david sanger, from "the new york times" from harvard today, thank you so much. have a gooood nig. here youou go. you, , too.
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as we pause this weekend to salute our veterans, especially on memorial day on monday, thousands of those same veterans are suffering. waiting months, even years for the benefits that are due them. an astonishing 873,000 veterans are estimated to currently be waiting for disability claims in a system still bogged down by paper rather than computerized list, tom tarantino is a former iraq army captain and a chief officer for the iraq and afghanistan veterans of america, welcome, thank you so much for your service. how is it possible that we are still using paper? >> it's a decades-old problem. although the good news is that the department of veterans affairs is actually switching to an entirely digital system as of april of this year, they are not receiving any more paper for claims. all claims are coming in that are digital. the problem is that the majority of the claims in the backlog are either resubmitted claims or older claims. so still 97% of the claims that
are waiting are still in stacks of paper and it is going to take a very long time to work through those. frankly, even though they should have anticipated that, they have not built the systems to do that in a timely fashion. >> we talk about claims, medical benefits, current needs. describe some of the cases you deal with all the time. >> these are injuries that were either incurred while in service or exacerbated while in service. the most common ones are things that should be easy. hearing loss, tinnitus, scarring vision loss. we're having a dramatic increase in post traumatic stress. so as we're seeing a lot more of these injuries come, especially from the iraq and afghanistan generation, who are surviving combat and living with much more complicated injuries, it becomes more difficult to rate. the problem is that the department of veteran affairs did not anticipate this. here we are, 11, 12 years into
the war and they're saying we're seeing this huge flood of cases that they should have anticipated five, six years ago. >> does there need to be a complete shakeup there at the v.a.? >> i think what they're doing is going to help prevent the backlog in the future. for future cases i think we'll see a much more efficient future system. the problem now is they have this overwhelming pile of paper. there's no way to describe it can you google images and it's shocking. that they're going to have to work through. and the v.a. says they're going to work through it by 2015. but behaven't seen any of the metrics or benchmarks that will prove that they're going to get there. >> one of the horrible ironies we have is we have better equipment in the field, so people are surviving, they're surviving horrendous injuries. we're getting them medivac'd out and treating them better, but there are more veterans that really need help. major help. >> and these are men and women out in the middle of the country
who have been waiting two, three, four, five, sometimes 600 days if you're in a major city in iraq or afghanistan veteran, you're waiting close to 600 days forror claim and you don't see any light at the end of the tunnel. we're calling on the president of the united states to lead this isn't just about the v.a. this is about making sure that the department of defense and the department of veterans affairs have the same medical records. they should be looking at the exact same file. but right now if you're a vet, the president of the united states does not give you a clarity as to when you're going to see an end to your long wait. >> this is about who we are as a country, tom. >> especially on memorial day, when we're supposed to remember those that we have lost. you can go to our website to take a moment of silence on your day off and remember those that we have lost and those we have fought for. we have to focus on taking care of those who are home, recovering from combat as well. >> tom tarantino, thank you very much.
hosseini, the afghan-american doctor and novelist, whose books starting with "the kite runner" have sold an amazing 38 million copies around the world. has written a new book "and the mountains echoed" it explores love, family relationships from times pre-taliban afghanistan and the west. >> and i sat down to talk with him recently. >> can afghanistan stand on its own? >> well i think -- >> militarily. >> the very, very big questions, i think afghanistan, i don't think anybody knows the answer to that. i don't think the afghanistan people certainly don't know. i would describe the upcoming few years as a time of uncertainty in the minds of many afghans. certainly those that i've spoken to. there are some who are convinced i happen to be not among them but there's a legitimate argument that some make is that
afghanistan, the doomsday scenario is coming. the doomsday scenario not even being the takeover by the taliban, but what happened before the taliban, which is all-out militia warfare. there are people who believe that will happen. i happen to think maybe it's wishful thinking, but i happen to think it won't, hopefully. in that the parties that are involved in the civil wars hopefully have learned important lessons about the benefits of peace. the benefits of a peaceful country. but certainly the boogeyman that every afghan in afghanistan is terrified of. is a return to the chaos, the rampant violence with impunity of the 1990s. >> women business leaders who are extraordinary, they are very worried about the fragility about the legal rights that they have won. >> yeah, they are. >> in this intervention. things for women in afghanistan
have improved. i think if you were to go to a remote village, say in the south of afghanistan, you wouldn't know what year it is, it could still be 1999 or it could be 1950. so things haven't changed all that much. but i think in the urban regions, like kabul and herat things have improved. women, there have been significant advances. in the field of women's rights. there's a female provincial governor in afghanistan, that would have been unthinkable 12 years ago, before september 11th. women serving in lower house of the parliament. but i, like you, those business leaders, those women business leaders in afghanistan do worry. you know, i think, i think that the role, the role of women in afghan society have got to be preserved. women's rights has to be the one of the cornerstones of national
rebuilding. if afghanistan has any chance of being a prosperous, peaceful nation in the future. i mean it's the way to lift yourself out of poverty is to empower your women. if you shot 50% of the population off the public sector, they're imprisoned in their homes, you're doomed. >> what do you home hoep that people will take away from this experience of reading this book? aside from the fact that it is so heart-breaking and so -- sweeping in its emotional grip. is there hope? >> there's a real answer to that question. and then there's like the fake noble answer to that question. >> try the real one. >> you want the real one? >> yes. >> the real answer is i want people to be deeply moved. you know, i want people to read this book and recognize something of being human on this
planet. as they've come to understand it thus far in their life on the pages of this book. i want them to read something and say i know that experience, you know, i've had that. i know what he's talking about. and to be able to connect on that kind of a human level with my writing. but the fake noble answer, i'll give it anyway, would have been, i want people to understand afghanistan better. i happen to hope they do. but it's not the reason why i sit down to write. but i fully understand that fiction serves often a purpose and touches and reaches people in ways that the writer never really intended. so my books have served as a kind of window into afghan people, afghan culture, afghan way of life. and has given people i think kind of a more human dimension of this country. that is so much on the news. often for the same kinds of
things over and over again. >> often in the news for the worst possible reasons. with the war-weary america. not understanding why we are there. and what the commitment is. and what you have managed to do is create the universeality of human experience. >> i thank you for saying that. i think it's the first step towards empathy, not that i'm trying to generate empathy. but i think that's what the literature inherently does. this day calls you.
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big time taste should fit in a little time cup. new single serve cafe collections from maxwell house now available for use in the keurig k-cup brewer. always good to the last drop. a lot of buzz surrounding comments made by hedge fund billionaire paul peter jones at university of charlottesville where he's a $100 million donor at a symposium there in april, he told a campus audience that women, at least two women that he had worked with years ago, had an experience that justified his view that women traders
cannot combine careers and family. just watch. >> they both got married. they both got married. then they both had, which in my mind is as big of a killer as divorce is, they both had children. and as soon as that baby's lips touched that girl's bosom, forget it. every single investment idea, every desire to understand every desire to understand what's going to make this go up or go down, is overwhelmed by the most beautiful experience, which a man will never share, with that emotive connection between that mother and that baby. >> joining me now, "washington post" editorial columnist, ruth marcus and "national journal" columnist, and jonathan capehart, msnbc contributor. first of all, let's get this out
here. paul jones has issued a statement saying my off-the-cuff remarks at the university of virginia were with regard to global macro traders 24/7 and likely less than 1,000 successful practitioners in the world today. macro trading require as high degree of skill, focus and dedication. life events such as birth, divorce, death of a loved one and other emotional highs and lows are objectk obstacles to success in this particular field. >> some might say that women have a certain connection, bonding that men don't share, some might object to that statement. your take on as someone who has balanced family, children, career, very successfully. >> well, i'm sorry, andrea, i
was thinking about my kids. i wasn't paying attention i -- >> focus, focus. >> okay, all right. here i am. what an unbelievably stupid, self-referencial, 19th century thing to say. i mean -- my goodness, first of all, everybody learns, except for if you want to have a world run by robots, if you can get the robots and the computers to be smart enough, they won't be distracted. but we bring our humanity to our lives and our jobs and we've all learned to multitask and multifocus. and i would say at least speaking for myself, sure, there are times when your kids distract you, there are ways in which you learn as a mother and i would say as a parent to actually be able to be more efficient and focus better than if you didn't have a lot of different things to think about. so what a load of -- you know, whatever. >> jonathan, you want to pick it
up from there? >> i agree, i agree with ruth. and listening to you read his statement, i had the vision of someone in a very deep hole digging the hole deeper. >> well, he does have three daughters and he says, that he, he references that. chris fraits. i don't know whether you have children or whether you juggle family issues and careers, how have you managed in this grueling tchb world of journalism? >> it seems like such a bone-headed thing so say. as ruth pointed out, you have many things you have to handle and the focus on women and children. men have many things they're focused on as well because everybody does. i find it incredible. whether it's birth, death, divorce, moving, there's always things that are going to take away your focus from jobs. and everybody handles them. to suggest that women want do it, they can't handle these things, it's very outdated and i feel like it kind of reflects
some of that wall street ma machismo. it still has very much a boys' club feel to it. in talking about it, he obviously thought this was not something that would become public. it has become public. now he has to, you know, apologize for it but it just shows that when people are speaking, when they think it's a private matter, that they're saying things differently than they might when they're in front of a camera. >> let me say briefly before we move on to lois lernor, speaking of people who didn't handle things 24/7, is the folks, the 380 women graduates of wharton mba, who i addressed two weeks ago -- ignore this. go on and do what you're doing and continue to have a great careers you're all going to have. okay. lois lernor, the irs is out, she took the fifth amendment, which is her right. you're an attorney. i was frankly troubled in just
watching it, because she did give this denial of culpability. and the way that i've viewed these hearings in the past. once you speak, you've actually waived your fifth amendment rights. i know lawyers disagree, issa will have his day and try to bring her back. >> she has a pretty good lawyer. so i haven't gone and read the law. but he is a very careful lawyer. and i really doubt that he would have allowed her to do that if he thought he was really risking her future. look lawyers are paid and they're paid lots of money to be careful. and the smart it looks absolutely terrible to invoke your fifth amendment right and it's infuriating to the members of the committee. it's infuriating to those of us who have to watch it. to the public, but it is in the constitution and once you, as you say, andrea, once you start to answer questions --
>> that's another issue. i only play one on television. >> and so she needs to do that because there is a criminal investigation and he can't responsibly allow her to answer questions. my very brief understanding of the law is that you are allowed to say a few short things in your defense. i would like to now take off my lawyer hat and put on my human being hat. nothing personal to the lawyers. the notion that she did nothing wrong is a little infuriating. because at the very least, gross mismanagement. >> jonathan capehart? >> i think what we're seeing is the tension between legal sphere and legal responsibilities versus the political sphere and political responsibilities. as ruth said, her lawyer is telling her to do these things to protect herself. because d.o.j., attorney general holder will be looking into criminal investigation as to what happened. but politically, the members of
congress in that hearing room and the american people want to know, you know, what did you do? when did you do it? why did you do it? or why didn't do you what you were supposed to do? the tension between legal and political is what is at work here. >> we're going to have to leave it there. thank you so very much. happy memorial day. we'll be right back. we've had s farm for 30 years. we raise black and red angus cattle. we also produce natural gas. that's how we make our living and that's how we can pass the land and water back to future generations. people should make up their own mind what's best for them. all i can say is it has worked well for us.
it will be a somber memorial weekend indeed in the town of moore, oklahoma. a half dozen funerals for tornado victims will be held over the next two days. in the meantime, the recovery effort is underway. state officials said today that 3,100 people have registered with fema. 1.4 million is already being distributed to those victims. nbc's ron mott is live. i know it is one step, one foot in front of the other. are people keeping their spirits up at this stage with what they've got to do in the next weeks, months, years?
>> reporter: i get the sense they are. this is only day four for the clean-up with the people dealing with the destruction. it probably feels like day 44. things are moving along slowly. the power crews are out. they're getting the traffic lights going. that will help with the little things of getting around. as you mentioned, some money from fema is already flowing. the governor is signing this disaster bill that will free up some $45 million after some of the affected areas. not just in moore but the day before the moore tornado. there was one in the shawnee area that cost two people their lives. little by little, things are starting to move around. some good news is ahead this weekend. there is graduation ceremonies tomorrow for the three high schools here in moore. they will all celebrate those commencements at the same place at the convention center in oklahoma city at three separate times and one of the big challenges will be to get everyone there because so many people lost their vehicles. but they are working hard to make sure people can enjoy those high school seniors going off into adulthood as it were.
>> indeed. ron mott, thank you from moore, oklahoma. that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." have a safe memorial day weekend. remember our veterans and follow the show online and on twitter. melissa rehberger is next. 20? new purina one beyond has 9. the simplified purina one beyond. learn more about these wholesome ingredients at purinaone.com diarrhea, gas, bloating? yes! one phillips' colon health probiotic cap each day helps defend against these digestive issues... with three strains of good bacteria. [ phillips' lady ] live the regular life. phillips'.
i find what i need, at a great price. and the money i save goes to important things. braces for my daughter. a little something for my son's college fund. when people look at me, i hope they see someone building a better life. vo: living better: that's the real walmart. accomplishing even little things can become major victories. i'm phil mickelson, pro golfer. when i was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, my rheumatologist prescribed enbrel for my pain and stiffness, and to help stop joint damage. [ male announcer ] enbrel may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal events including infections, tuberculosis, lymphoma, other cancers, nervous system and blood disorders, and allergic reactions have occurred. before starting enbrel, your doctor should test you for tuberculosis and discuss whether you've been to a region where certain fungal infections are common. you should not start enbrel if you have an infection like the flu. tell your doctor if you're prone to infections, have cuts or sores, have had hepatitis b, have been treated for heart failure, or if you have symptoms such as persistent fever,
bruising, bleeding, or paleness. since enbrel helped relieve my joint pain, it's the little things that mean the most. ask your rheumatologist if enbrel is right for you. [ doctor ] enbrel, the number one biologic medicine prescribed by rheumatologists. i'm milissa rehberger in for tamron hall. we're following lois lerner who is off the irs two days after she refused to answer questions. she was placed on paid administrative leave after reportedly refusing to resign making her the third senior irs official to lose their job or step aside. this morning while addressing the academy graduation, president obama spoke about the misconduct of a few who were undermining public trust in the
government. >> every day our civil servants do their jobs with professionalism. protecting our national security and delivering the services that so many americans expect. as we've seen again in recent days, it only takes misconduct of a few to further erode the people's trust in their government. >> joining me now, former pennsylvania governor ed rendell, attorney, columnist and contributor, and politico correspondent anna palmer. my thanks to all of you for joining us. governor rendell, we'll start with you. lois lerner has been put on paid administrative leave. what happens now? do you think she'll be called back to testify? >> i think they'll attempt to bring her back to testify. the fifth amendment can be aasserted at any time. often a witness in the middle of their testimony, if a difficult question was asked, the witness asserted the fifth amendment and