tv The Place for Politics 2016 MSNBC April 9, 2016 6:00am-7:01am PDT
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ijoo i'm aman mohyeldin. the republican delegate hunt is heating up as ted cruz outmaneuvers donald trump at the state republican convention in colorado. we will take you live to colorado springs where ted cruz will address party leaders. democrats are caucusing in wyoming, 14 of the state's 18 delegates are up for grabs today. in the last democratic contest before that, very critical new york primary. this week, hillary clinton and bernie sanders trading jab ns an unprecedented string of attacks between the two democrats. sanders is now walking back his doubts about whether clinton is qualified to be president. clinton responding friday to the very same question about her opponent. take a listen. >> i would take him over donald trump or ted cruz any day. >> both hillary clinton and bernie sanders are campaigning in new york city today. sanders will start the day at a rally in washington heights an hour from now and head to the
bronx and long island city. clinton will hold an event in new york city. kristen, let's talk about bernie sanders who could pick up his seven seventh win in a row today. how important is that momentum going into the final stretch before they get to the new york primary? >> it is really important for that momentum that you talk about, aman. bottom line, he keeps raking up wins. that's good for him and his supporters. it energizes his base. what he is not doing is significantly chip noog her delegate lead. what the campaign likes to call an insurmountable delegate lead. he has to start winning larnler states like new york and not just winning them but winning them by huge margins. that's why we are seeing such a fierce battleground here in new york. if you look at the latest poll, secretary clinton still leads.
she has a double-digit lead by about 12 points. that is down from her nearly 30-point lead she had several months ago. if you talk to sanders supporters and sanders surrogates, they are encouraged by that. they think this state is winnable for bernie sanders and, quite frankly, that would be a game changer. >> a little interesting dynamic unfolding in new york. hillary clinton and bernie sanders getting to play the i'm from new york card claiming it is their home turf in different ways. who do you think is winning that argument? do you think it is going to resonate with voters? >> it is hard to tell who is winning the argument. we will know on election day. senator sanders has a strong argument. he was born here and lived here until he was a teenager. he has been campaigning vigorously in brooklyn. that will be critical to his strategy as he tries to energize minority african-american voters throughout the empire state. for secretary clinton, she
served two terms as senator. she is using that blueprint that she used to win her senate seat to try to win the new york primary. she is reminding voters of her record here. another thing secretary clinton is doing as a part of her strategy aim is to focus on upstate new york. you have a lot of delegates and an area hit hard by the recession. you have secretary xlin tclinto really focusing there. that's an area she could have some trouble. let's move on to the republican side of the debate. nbc's jacob rascon is live for us outside trump towers in midtown manhattan where there has been a recent campaign shake-up. jacob? >> reporter: this is a major shift in the trump campaign. it is incredibly small, incredibly tight, incredibly unconventional as we know, famously so. this week, the new convention manager who was just hired got expanded responsibilities.
he is going to oversee the d.c. office, do congressional outreach as well and now he says he is going to hire seasoned operatives. of course, this coming on the heels of a big wisconsin loss and losing as well delegates in other states like louisiana to ted cruz and last night, losing 21 out of 37 to ted cruz. they know they are behind in that game. this he have hired paul manafod who has decades of experience, who has known trumps since the '80s. even he says and campaign officials tell me they do believe they have a path to 1237. that path starts in new york winning big, at least 80 delegates here. if they can do that, they only have to get 52%, 53% of the delegates going forward. they are confidence they can do that. on another note, donald trump, we have been waiting for him to respond to what bernie sanders said about unqualified.
finally, he did that this morning. he tweeted about an hour ago, bernie sanders says hillary clinton is unqualified to be president. based on her decision making ability, i can go along with that. this is a lot of time off for donald trump. this is now the fourth day. he says he is catching up on running his billion dollar business and a few days late but now he is, of course, chiming in on that argument and you can expect more of that as we get closer to the general election. aman? >> all right, nbc's jacob rascon. appreciate that. for more, i want to bring in bloomberg national political reporter, sawa kapore. let's start with you. the polling shows donald trump with a big lead in new york with just ten days until the critical primary. what's the game plan for ted cruz and john kasich to chip away at trump's lead in new york if there is one? >> trump is very far ahead. recent polls show him 30, 35
points ahead. this is a very important state, 27 micro primaries. trump wants all of these delegates, if he gets them, that would reduce the ratio of which he needs to win future races to clinch the nomination on the first ballot. what ted cruz is trying to dice reduce trump's delegates. the trouble is ted cruz is competing with john kasich for second place. some polls have john kasich ahead of ted cruz and some polls have the two of them tied. ted cruz plan is to starve trump of as many delegates as he possibly can and keep his hopes alive. ted cruz, even after his big win in wisconsin, needs about 80% of the remaining delegates to win the nomination. his best bet is to prevent trump from getting the majority, 1237 and winning at an open convention. >> let me pick up on that point. ted cruz had a strong showing in wisconsin. he had a record month in fundraising, bringing in, i
think, $12 million. he hasn't done so well here in new york with the criticism about new york city values or new york values. what's the strategy or the play for ted cruz? >> number one, donald trump wants to win as many as possible to get it to 50% of the delegates going forward after new york. it is 27 vidcon tests. y you have some congressional districts that are very small. you could have a district where you get 3,000 votes and you win and take three delegates from donald trump. there are about 18 from the new york city media market south. upstate, there are only nine congressional district. that's a lot of down state tv. you have new jersey and connecticut. if somebody comes in with money and spends money on broadcast tv against donald trump, it actually benefits them in future states as well. >> so ted cruz should try to compete for new york in the next ten days? >> i don't any he can walkway from it.
the challenge is, given those new york comments and given kasich's lack of money, can they form an operation to make the phone calls and knock on doors and drop mail in the congressional districts and try to swing a few votes their way? >> there are nearly 200 unbound delegates on the republican side, delegates that go to the rnc convention beholden to no one. they have been recruiting supporters in pennsylvania and virginia. could these unbound delegates determine the race going forward? >> i think they will be very important. this is an area where you have to give the advantage to ted cruz. this team is very organized on this. they are doing all they can to make sure they get elected and show up. even to woo the delegates that were bound on the first and second ballot. this is one of the reasons for the shake-up you were talking about. did the did the's campaign is very, very far behind on this delegate front. it is not.
they can't bet on clinching the 1,237. he is trying to win all for starters, win all of new york delegates and get the wind at his back again. what ted cruz needs to do is compete where he can. there are some areas. there are some parts of new york where he will do better than others. some of the upstate districts and the better educated districts. >> the number of delegates in new york awarded on april 19th, the names of those delegates is selected at a later date. even though he wins them, he is only guaranteed on the first and second ballot. when they go out to cleveland, you don't know where they are going to go on the second ballot or who these men and women are. that brings them back, trying to organize conventions and pick their delegates to have them on a second and third ballot. >> a lot of uncertainty left. thank you very much. sahil, we are going to be talking to you later in the show. we are looking at live pictures
from wyoming where democrats will start caucusing less than four hours from now. what's at stake when we come back? crunching the numbers. what it will take for bernie sanders to overcome his deficit in the delegate race. stay with us. is it becoming a better professor by being a more adventurous student? is it one day giving your daughter the opportunity she deserves? is it finally witnessing all the artistic wonders of the natural world? whatever your definition of success is, helping you pursue it, is ours. t-i-a-a.
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today, democrats will caucus in wyoming. bernie sanders hoping they extend his recent win streak out west less than two weeks before the all important new york primary. kristen dahlgren is on the ground for us in cheyenne, wyoming. sanders has a chance to pick up a few more delegates whachlt are you hearing from voters about his chances and how optimistic they are? >> reporter: there is a lot of excitement around the wyoming caucus. the republicans had theirs a few
weeks ago today, all about the democrats. we are expecting people to begin lining up in the next hour to two hours. they had to move the venue of the caucus here in cheyenne to a smaller hotel here to this huge gymnasium. they are expecting so many people, possibly record turnout. you might be asking, why so much excitement. this is a red state. there is only about 19% of wyoming voters that are registered as democrats. it really is about momentum at this point. bernie sanders has been outspending secretary clinton here. he is the only candidate who has been to the state. she hasn't visited. president clinton was here campaigning for her. it really would mean if he wins here today another win that would head towards the new york primary. it really could be key in this momentum that he has been talking about in so many of his stump speeches, really important
for him going into new york. that's why there is so much focus here even though it is only 14 delegates. the four superdelegates already pledged to clinton. a good, good chance for bernie sanders here today. caucuses really favor him. he is expected to do well here. >> kristen dahlgren live in cheyenne. we heard kristen talk about despite sanders recent winning streaks, the path to the nomination for him remains daunting. steve kernacka breaks down the numbers for us. >> bernie sanders has been on a roll lately. is it too late for him to catch hillary clinton and get the democratic nomination? let's take a look at the delegate matthi delega delegate math. these are elected leaders, overwhelmingly for hillary clinton. it drives the sanders people nuts when you count these. these delegates are not
officially locked in. they could still change their mind. getting them to change their mind could be a tall order. the sanders campaign believes if they could get the allocated delegates, those given out by winning primaries and caucuses, if they can win this category, that would send a message to the superdelegate that is the will of the people is behind bernie sanders and this they have to change their minds. i'm not sure that's what would happen. let's go with that for now. what would it take for bernds to catch hillary clinton in this category, the pledged delegate sns rig s? >> right now, he is 246 behind her. washington, where he won big, not tallied yet. that will drop down to 210. he has to make up 210 pledged delegates. if you want to erase 210 if you are sanders, a couple of
obstacles. "x"s in new york dakota and w wyoming, he only has two caucus states on the boar. the rest of these, some of them closed primaries, meaning end penalties can't vote. another obstacle for bernie sanders. here is the thing. the big states that are left, california, new york, new jersey, pennsylvania, new jersey, maryland, two thirds of all the remaining delegates come from those states. here is the problem for bernie sanders, if you lose any of these states, you have the potential to start losing ground, to start losing 10, 20, 30 delegates. it becomes insurmountable quickly. if you are bernie sanders, all these other states, the smaller states that are left, you have to run the table, win some of them big. you basically have to win them all. these big states, california, new york, you have to win them, pennsylvania, new jersey.
maybe you can afford a loss in maryland where the demographics look particularly rough but you can't lose it big. you need a perfect storm the rest of the way. 210 may not sound like the biggest number in the grand scheme of things. the way they give out these delegates, very hard to make up. bernie sanders, not going to say it is impossible. he has a steep hill to climb. >> msnbc steve karnakky, we will check back with him shortly. new anti-terror raids in belgium. at least one person has been arrested. we are going to take you to brussels for the very latest. stay with us.
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this is humira at work. spending the day with my niece. that make me smile. i don't use super poligrip for hold, because my dentures fit well. before those little pieces would get in between my dentures and my gum and it was uncomfortable. even well fitting dentures let in food particles. just a few dabs of super poligrip free is clinically proven to seal out more food particles so you're more comfortable and confident while you eat. so it's not about keeping my dentures in, it's about keeping the food particles out. try super poligrip free. we are watching developing news out of belgium where new raids are underway in etterbeck. about 50 armed police have closed off-roads and evacuated a building. at least one perp hson has been
arrested. investigators are now trying to figure out if one of them is the man in white seen in a photo from brussels airport bombings right before that caught on closed circuit television. nbc's bill neely is in brussels this morning with more. >> reporter: good morning, aman, from brussels, where police are still questioning at least five suspects they arrested here yesterday. two of them they believe are connected to both the paris and the brussels massacres. the question they can't answer, not now at least, not for the moment, is one of them the so-called man in the hat. anti-terror police were hunting for men, weapons and police and explosives in brussels into the early hour this is morning. that followed the dramatic daytime arrests on the city streets of isis suspects wanted for mass murder. mohamed abrini, top of the list, the last named fugitive from the
paris mass akirs. the isis suspect was arrested right here on the sidewalk. police have been searching nearby because recently they have found a network of bomb factories and safe houses all within a mile of here. abrini was arrested after five months as one of europe's most wanted. renting rooms for killers. >> the suicide bombers stayed in different places before the attacks in paris. >> reporter: abrini will be questioned not just about one massacre but two. investigators are trying to prove if this is him, if he is the man in the hat with two suicide bombers at brussels airport. a day before he was arrested, police released these new pictures of him walking away from that bombing. they asked for help finding him. now, they are questioning him. >> abrini in custody is a very important commodity, information can be pieced together from what he says or doesn't say, will turn out to be quite important
to crack the other cells that are undoubtedly preparing some sort of activities. >> he was filmed at a gas station near paris two days before the killings there with his childhood friend, salah abdel slam who fled the attacks. the next day they were with a suicide bomber in a car used in the mass akirs. his dna was also found in a bomb factory. police also arrested this man, osama kay who they say may have been with the suicide bomber in brussels and had the bag force the airport bombs in this city mob. police believe they have two of the men at the very heart of the terror attack. >> that was bill neely in brussels the new york primary may be ten days away. this will be a crucial day for ted cruz as he tries to deny donald trump the delegates he needs to win the nomination. more than a dozen delegates will be selected today.
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welcome back, the caucus doo doors close in wyoming. democrats are caucusing. bernie sanders poised to notch a seventh straight win against hillary clinton ten days before the primary here in new york. just a half hour from now, sanders will address supporters in manhattan. on the republican side, the delegate fight is on. we are entering a stage of the campaign where what happens during delegate selection matters just as much as what happens on primary days. 13 delegates will be selected today at the gop convention in colorado. ted cruz is hoping for a clean sweep where jacob soboroff is. he joins us from colorado springs as he tracks down some
unbound delegates. let's talk about what this process is all about. explain that to us if you can. >> reporter: good morning, aman. basically, this whole line of people you are looking at right now, which stretches all the way down that way and into the broadmoor world arena in colorado springs is going in to vote for 13 remaining delegates here in colorado. ted cruz is going to be here today. on the lines right now, you are actually seeing people pass out the ted cruz brochures for people that are here. i think one of them is right now walking in, might tell you more. i might be able to grab one. are you on the cruz slate, ma'am? >> no, i am not. >> you are passing out this cruz sleeve of delegate zs i have been a cruz supporter since 2013. >> that is very key here, aman. the ted cruz campaign is focused heavily on this state to clean up the delegates. if he can stop donald trump from getting to 1,237 on the first ballot at the republican convention in cleveland, he has
a shot an an open or brokered convention of getting himself in there. the cruz campaign will tell you they think they can get 1,237 on the first ballot themselves. they wouldn't be able to do it without the delegates they are fighting for here. >> jacob, thank you very much for that update. to avoid a nasty delegate battle, donald trump has a chance to clinch the nomination. we break down how he could do it. >> a lot of talk about donald trump. as paem seople say, no way he i going to get to 1,237 and avoid that contested convention. hang on a second. it might be a little more complicated. can trump get that magic number? i think it is still possible. take a look at this. right now, he has 756. remember, the number he needs to hit 1,237. what's the next state on the board? it is new york.
95 delegates here. donald trump has a big advantage in the polls. very possible he gets most of the delegates. that could turn to 850 when new york is over. what comes next? the northeast. this looks like trump territory. if he comes into april 26th when all of these states vote with 850 delegates. this is winner take off in maryland. he could get the lion's share in delaware, maryland, a lot out of connecticut. there is only 17 you can get from pennsylvania that day. it is a little complicated there. rhode island, p 850, could be 950. back ahead by a pretty big margin. from 950, where would he go? these are the rest of the states in may and june. if he starts at 950, can we get him up to 1237? i think we can. take a look at new jersey. this is one of the last states to vote. trump would be the favorite. that would him over 1,000.
1,0001 could become 1,030. for now, let's say trump win it is. that would mean even a small win would mean about had 2 delegates at least. that could put him to 1072. we head out west. these are winner take all states that look like cruz states. we'll forget about those for now. how about new mexico, trump could take 12. that could put him at 1084. california is complicated. they do it by congressional district. we know trump is leading in the polls there. what if he gets 120. then, he is at 1204. if he gets half the delegates, it becomes 1240 and 1240 is greater than 1237. donald trump could still get to
1237 and avoid the contested convention. we are going to find out right away in new york on the 19th. how close does he come to 95? if he is at or near 95, he could still have a shot at this? >> our real time calculator, steve karnacki. next, we'll turn to the democratic race and bernie sanders attack on hillary clinton. will it resonate with new yorkers ten day frs now? stay with us. (laughing) there's nothing like making their day. except making sure their tomorrow is taken care of too. financial guidance while you're mastering life. from chase. so you can.
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is it one day giving your daughter the opportunity she deserves? is it finally witnessing all the artistic wonders of the natural world? whatever your definition of success is, helping you pursue it, is ours. t-i-a-a. hillary clinton and bernie sanders are both campaigning in new york. he campaigned in front of his childhood home. clinton visited a medical center. new york is a delegate rich state for the democrats. 291 delegates are at stake here. for more, let's bring in evan syviski and syhil kapur joins us
from bloomberg politics. evan, the sanders campaign has released a new video hitting clinton by name for her ties to wall street. it has been a strategy of his throughout the campaign. do you think it will take on a different meaning? how is it likely to resonate with new york city? >> you have to remember that just as the auto industry is to detroit, the finance industry is to new york city. it may not be popular with everybody. there are a lot of people that work in the finance, insurance industry. >> let's talk about bernie sanders yesterday in this issue of qualifying and in the debate about qualifications. yesterday, he defended himself against claims that he engaged in negative attacks. take a listen to what he said. >> how often have i talked about hillary clinton's e-mails? have you heard me? not a word. how often have i talked about the clinton's foundation fundraising? have you heard me say that?
>> to say i am running a vitriolic campaign. >> why haven't you? some are very good questions. i have tried to stay away from personal attacks. >> you wrote yesterday about the reaction inside the democratic party to this week of campaigning. are people worried about the party unifying down the road? are we starting to see some lines that are not going to be repairable? >> i think we are seeing. we were seeing earlier in the week democratic strategists worried, doing pandering about the possibility that if bernie sanders and hillary clinton keep escalating the fight and things keep getting nastier, that the party would be unable to unite? firstly, bernie sanders walked back his comment yesterday by saying, of course, she is qualified and of course he is going to support her if she is the nominee over the republicans? the more important thing is, we saw this movie in 2008. the battle between obama and clinton was much nastier than what we are seeing between bernie sanders and hillary clinton? the party united. there were polls saying as many
as half of hillary clinton's supporters in places like indiana wouldn't get behind obama. as many as a quarter would support mccain over obama. the democratic party is in better shape with both candidates pledging to support each other if they are the nominee. what bernie sanders is trying to do is use his laser focus critique. what he was talking about there is the fact that he has had a singular critique about hillary clinton for months and months. it has resonated and help him cut a national lead down to single dinlg hillary clinton leads in new york. she cannot be trusted to take on these big corporate interests if she is taking their money. that also applies to president obama and hillary clinton has a lot to say about that. that's his critique. that's what he has been using to chip away at her. >> evan, we were hearing earlier from steve who was mapping out the numbers game for bernie sanders, do you feel as he gets to the stage where he has to run
the table that this campaign could turn negative? na that a desperate candidate could turn to desperate measures? >> typically, when you are behind, your supporters get frustrated. as he is further behind, you start to see a little more i can't quite call it vitriol. it is far more measured. he is frustrated, banging his head against the wall. he is behind in the delegate math. the god's honest truth is cutting it close or even winning new york, which won't happen, isn't enough. he has to start running the table. the math just isn't there for him. >> in terms of the negativity of it, is it going to work for him to remain focused on policy or do you think there has to be as we were hear ng that segment on "morning joe" people are asking him, why aren't you talking about some of these issues that may have legitimate questions to the clinton campaign? >> for bernie sanders, is he committed to the issues or the ambition of running for
president? if he is committed to the issues he is articulating, the best way to eventually affect policy in a way that is favorable to his point of view is for a democrat to win the white house. having a hugely divisive primary where the democrats go down the same side show mentality that the republicans have had, that's not helpful. all that does is put november into doubt and that's not good for the issues bernie sanders cares about. >> bill clinton made headlines after a tough exchange with some black lives matters protesters over the 1994 crime bill. here is that exchange. we'll talk about it right afterwards. take a listen. >> i don't know how you would characterize the gang leaders who got 13-year-old kids hopped up on crack and sent them out on to the street to murder other african children. maybe you thought they were good citizens. she didn't. she didn't. >> i rather vigorously defended
my wife. i realized finally i was talking past her the way she was talking past me. i know those young people yesterday were just trying to get good television and it did. that doesn't mean that i was most effective in answering it. >> so "the washington post," among many outlets calling this clinton's p 2016 moment. the former president later saying he regretted how he handled the exchange. do you think this will cost hillary clinton among african-american voters, who she holds a large majority of support now? >> i think bill and hillary clinton did enough damage control that i don't know it will stick beyond last week. bill clinton was clearly going for a moment. it is not the '90s anymore. this issue does not resonates with democrats in the same way it did in the '90s. the black lives matter movement is fierce, very powerful, very vocal about the fact that the african-american community is
the victim of these instances of violence of police brutality and so forth. what worked in the '90s when there was a big wave about tough on crime, does not work now with the democratic base. it is not the first time that bill or hillary clinton has moved off script and had to swiftly move back. they have been pretty good about that this campaign, not letting mistakes stick and walking them back. >> evan, want to play you the sound bite. this was president clinton defending his wife and say she was held to a higher or different standard in this campaign season. take a listen. >> i think she would be the best president. i think it's obvious by a country mile. that's all that matters to me. yes, i think there are some different standards. some of them are subconscious. >> is that a winning argument or have voters moved beyond that? >> i think voters in new york know hillary clinton. i think most of the country
knows hillary clinton. her numbers are consistent. the undecided will break towards the lessor known candidate as they become more defined. that's what's happening with sanders. she maintains good solid lead because she represented new york so effectively and because she has such a long history and deep well of support within the new york democratic party. >> evan savisky and sahil kapur, thank you for joining us bernie sanders will sit down with chuck todd on "meet the press" tomorrow. check your local listings. how bernie sanders is trying to connect hillary clinton to the so-called panama paper scandal. stay with us.
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you know, has allowed corporations and wealthy people all over the world to avoid paying their taxes to their countries. >> that was bernie sanders tying hillary clinton to the banking bombshell that shook the world community sunday of the panama papers. a massive leak of over 11 million documents, exposing how some of the wealthiest and influential people around the world used a law firm in panama to create tax shelters to avoid paying taxes in their home country. he blamed the 2011 pan aman free trade agreement for allowing these tax havens, slamming clinton for the support of the deal as then secretary of state. she quickly fired back in philadelphia. take a listen sxwch. >> outrageous tax havens and loopholes that super rich people are exploiting in panama and elsewhere. some of this behavior is clearly
against the law and everybody who violates the law anywhere should be held accountable. it is also scandalous how much is actually legal. that's why last year i proposed a plan to so-called private tax system for the mega wealthy. we're going after all these scams and make sure everyone pays their fair share here in america. >> it's not just here in america. the scandal is having global political implications. joining me is will fitsbegin object, the organization that coordinated with 400 journalists from the last year in secrecy to analyze the documents. and also joining us for analysis is professor of international affairs and senior fellow at the world policy institute. thank you for joining us. will, you lived these documents the last year. but this news didn't get much coverage here in the u.s. how big and widespread are the
implications of this and is it illegal, per se? >> i think what we've seen since sunday since the panama papers went wide across the world is that every corner of the globe is touched. taxi drivers in uruguay, ministries of finance in rwanda, prime ministers in pakistan are talking about it. it is of great interest to politicians, and the average citizen across the world. >> let's talk about one of the important aspects of this. a founding partner of the law firm at the center of the storm said in an interview with reuters the firm had been hacked and had filed a complaint with state prosecutors. could you tell us a little bit about how these documents became available since you worked on it? where did you guys get them from? >> so icij, the international c consortium has done a number of leaked-based projects. i a source who remains unknown
contacted a german reporter at a newspaper. the german reporter early last year decided there was so much information and there was so much evidence of interest to countries and governments across the world that it didn't make sense to hoard it within one newsroom alone. and that's when he reached out to icij and that's when we set about building a network of 400 journalists who could decide what issues needed to be brought to light. >> let's talk about this leak. it's obviously having global implications. some of the political implications include iceland's prime minister already stepping down from his position for an unspecified period of time in the wake of the leak. britain's david cameron admitted he profited from offshore accounts too saying just this morning he accepts the blame and plans on releasing his tax returns which in itself is somewhat unprecedented for british prime ministers. people aren't happy, more than
1,000 protestors calling for cameron's res in additiignatior. close friends to vladimir putin and yesterday eamon javers spoke with the law firm, and he was asked whether he knew of the world leaders using his law firm for this activity. take a listen to what he said. >> did you know that vladimir putin's aides and associates were using the information? >> no. when we find out names like putin or like other heads of state, it is always through the media. it means that -- >> did you know that eight members of the chinese bureau were using your services? >> no, of course not. did you know that david r cameron's family were using your services? >> you continedon't want to kno owns that company? >> nowadays with the regulations, we have to know who is behind the company.
so because our -- >> you just told me you didn't know all those names. >> yes. that is -- that is correct. >> first of all, who do you believe? do you believe the -- the ceo of this law firm? >> well, if you're going to say -- i did know that 12 heads of states laundry money through my firm, of course not. of course he would say -- >> but the implication is maybe they're not doing something illegal. i mean, yes, they're doing something that may be considered, you know, not popular in their countries. maybe unethical. but not necessarily unlegal. his answer seems to suggest he debit know anything going on about his law firm with these clients. >> what he says is, he seems to me that he didn't know anything that these are the clients. and whatever he did for the clients just per se was absolutely legal. and i think the scandal is that once you're the service of your nation, you're not really supposed to launder money elsewhere, and you're supposed to get a paycheck from the government and that's where it
ends. and i think it's more of a -- more of a political scandal, obviously, than it is probably illegal or even an economic scandal. >> so will, let me pick up on that point. can the trail of these tax havens or any money laundering schemes be tied directly to let's say vladimir putin or other world leaders from what you've researched? >> i think what we see in panama papers is a variety of maneuvers, mechanisms and often legal ways to hide ownership. in some cases, people and politicians obviously use stand-in or nominee directors or shareholders. sometimes they're family members, sometimes they're friends. sometimes they're random individuals who live in a slum in panama who you pay a few hundred dollars to represent you. in other cases, what surprised me about so many panama papers there was quite clearly on black and white paper the names of the children, for example, of the president, and the box wasn't ticked to say and recognize they were someone related to
politics. >> so let me press you on this real quickly. did you see from your research illegal activity or just what you described unethical or perhaps not popular activity or very, you know, poorly -- from a political perspective, very poor activity? >> i think we saw plenty of poor activity. people explicitly asking to pay as little as tax as they could. often when it comes to questions of legality and illegality, that's something investigators and judges find some years down the track. what we found lots of proof of was that someone who had been jailed in the united states or nigeria five years ago for funneling money. >> are you surprised you're not seeing a lot of american names and the reason why is because there are some tax havens already in the united states? >> well, that's what i'm reading. that's what people are saying, that the american names are unknown there because it's already possible here in certain
states. but i'm also thinking that probably panama wouldn't -- there is such rich clientele all over the world. why would you want to mess up with america, where there are more checks and balances than in other places. >> nina and will, thank you very much for joining us this saturday morning. that's all for me this hour. thanks for joining us. i'll be back with you at 2:00 eastern time. joy reid picks up our nonstop political coverage from here. stay with us. intelligent one. ♪ the all-new audi a4, with available virtual cockpit. ♪ whyto learn, right?e? so you can get a good job and you're not working for peanuts. well what if i told you that peanuts can work for you? while you guys are busy napping, peanuts are delivering 7 grams of protein and 6 essential nutrients right to your mouth. you ever see a peanut take a day off? no. peanuts don't even get casual khaki fridays. because peanuts take their job seriously. so unless you want a life of skimming wifi off the neighbors, you'll harness the hardworking power of the peanut.
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technology moves faster than ever. the all-new audi a4, with apple carplay integration. gotta love the music. i'm joy reid here at msnbc headquarters in new york. bernie sanders and hillary clinton have been battling all week over breaking up the banks, gun policy and who is or isn't qualified to be president. the two democratic party contenders continue their quest for empire state voters today with campaign events scheduled across new york city this afternoon. ten days out from the big new york