tv MSNBC Live MSNBC May 12, 2016 8:00am-9:01am PDT
as you can see by the screen, a very active day in our nation's capitol and all of it focused on the gop's presumptive nominee. we're waiting for donald trump to arrive at the national republican senatorial offices to meet with republican senate leadership. just a few minutes ago trump wrapped up meetings at the rnc headquarters. he was meeting with speaker paul ryan and rnc chairman reince priebus and gop house leadership, this all happening as protesters were voicing disapproval of the candidate. we're continuing to get new information on how the meetings went, including just a short time ago a tweet from reince priebus calling his meeting with trump, a positive step towards party unity. shortly we'll actually hear from speaker ryan, expecting to hear from him this hour when he holds his weekly briefing.
this is donald trump's motorcade arrivie for the senate meeting. it's supposed to start at 11:45. this is the scene of a lot of interesting things to put it mildly happening with the republican party -- luke russert is standing by. let's go to the latest with luke. >> reporter: hey, there, tamron. i think we just saw donald trump's motorcade just came over here to the nrsc. this is the building where republicans are tasked with fund raising and also trying to come up with a strategy for them to keep the senate. donald trump, this is something that a lot of folks have speculated might be troublesome especially for republicans that represent blue or purple states, kelly ayotte in new hampshire,
some folks speculate john mccain in arizona could have a tough go of it because of the latino turnout against donald trump. he'll have meetings with officials as well as the senate republican leadership. mitch mcconnell comes to mind. he also will have john cornyn and roy blunt. the interesting difference though, tamron, unlike paul ryan who has been slow to warm up and embrace donald trump, mitch mcconnell said after ted cruz dropped out that he was willing to support the nominee and willing to support trump. a little bit more of a unified front on the senate republican side than we know on the house side. we'll hear from paul ryan around 11:30. that's the latest from here. it will be interesting to see for me, what the electoral strategy is with donald trump from the very well paid smart minds in the room that were able to get mitch mcconnell, they have a big -- i would argue
herculean task on their hands. >> you mentioned that the meeting with the members of the senate at least those in that meeting, it's expected to go pretty well but when you look at races like pat toomey, there are other senators not as enthusiastic as the few he may meet with today who are worried about their individual races if trump is their nominee. >> reporter: without doubt. and i think toomey is a great example. you can look at it on both sides of the coin. you can say on one hand, look, donald trump had a tremendous margin of victory in pennsylvania, white working class voters were very enthusiastic about his candidacy. perhaps some of them were democrats. perhaps independents all alike, perhaps they'll say pat toomey, donald trump, we got t the other side of the coin, hold on, philadelphia, pittsburgh, donald trump, two areas that have
vibrant african-american latino constituencies and a lot of women in the surrounding suburbs that might be uncomfortable. what does that mean for patrick toomey. he has not been quick to embrace donald trump in any capacity, and he's just one of a handful of senators that you have interesting questions about what it means, what does trump mean for them and they are just starting to come to grips with that. i think flying at 30,000 feet, the one thing i've been fascinated about. we cover this minute by minute. there's such a level of confusion by how quickly this came about. and that's what they are coming to grips with, oh, my gosh, this really is our nominee. they thought they would have until july to come to that conclusion. >> which was surprising, because when you look at the vote count and how he started to build on his margin of victory, it is kind of stunning it would catch them by surprise. but it's also because we talked so much about a contested
convention. let me bring in katy tur, and katy, as i mentioned, reince priebus tweeted out saying the meeting went well. this is an interesting contrast. you had earlier in the day yesterday, donald trump saying he had a mandate to continue his unorthodox campaign style, which was part of the hesitation coming from people like house speaker paul ryan as far as trump's campaign, the tone of it and also the importance of policy differences. >> reporter: 100%. we just were walking down the alley to where done 5ald trump t depos departed. we'll see if we can get anyone else. as you said, there's a wiwide g between donald trump and the party. he's been flip flopping if you
will or flexible on issues quite a bit lately and they are trying to nail down where he stands on core republican policy positions like abortion, like immigration and like entitlements and taxes, trade, these sorts of things. they don't really maybe don't know yet where donald trump stands because he's been a little bit mushy in his positions if you want to put it in an off the beat way. different way. but donald trump left here a second ago, his motorcade passed by me up this alley way and he had a big smile. didn't open his window though. it seems as if the meeting at least by appearances went well. we will find out more as to what exactly they were speaking about in the coming minutes. remember, this meeting just ended, now going over to meet with the senate. but it's a big day for donald trump. he hasn't had a relationship with these folks in washington at all. he hasn't been a politician.
he's been a businessman and been on the other side of the aisle trying to buy influence with them. but now he's got to try to work together and whether or not they find a way to bridge that gap, we're going to have to wait and see. >> we just got something in, a joint statement. we just got a joint statement now from house speaker paul ryan and donald trump. it reads in part, the united states cannot afford another four years of the obama white house, which is what hillary clinton represents. that is why it is critical at a republicans unite around our shared principles and advance a conservative agenda and do all we can to win this fall. with that focus, we had a great conversation this morning while we were honest about our few differences, we recognize that there are many important areas of common ground. we will be having additional discussions but remain confident there's a great opportunity to unify our party and win this fall. we're totally committed to
working together to achieve that goal. we're extremely proud of the fact that many millions of new voters have enter the primary system far more than ever before in the republican party's history. this was our first meeting but it was a very positive step towards unification. let's dissect this here. we know the last part of that statement, the millions of new voters which entered the primary system far more than ever before in the republican party's history. chalk that up to donald trump, we know that's his line. and advance a conservative agenda, katy tur, that would be paul ryan's part of that statement, wanting to really emphasize that the party remains focused on their conservative values and that goes to what katy, you were pointing out, these differences beyond tone but regarding policy. we've seen donald trump at least in the last few days amend his so-called ban or desire to ban muslims from coming into this country, katy. >> reporter: absolutely. i just stepped off camera, we
want to see if we can get paul ryan leaving the rnc. that's what you're seeing right now. you're absolutely right. what donald trump has in his meetings right now, the fact he has a mandate from the voters. he has more voeters than voted for mitt romney during the primaries in 2012. he's going to use that to his advantage. he's going to say, listen, the republican voters have spoken and they've said and you can see a number of folks are leaving right now, they've said that i'm their choice, not necessarily those that are already in washington, not necessarily paul ryan or the folks that haven't necessarily embraced people like lindsey graham or bushes or number of others. what donald trump has got that in his corner whereas paul ryan has to figure out a way to make it work with him. regardless of whether he wins or loses, the republican party is going to be his after that. they are going to have find a
way to rebuild and move on. what the republican base going to look like post donald trump is it a completely new party? if he doesn't get into office is it a fractured party that they have to find a way to heal. what are the issues that matter to republican voters most? are they conservative issues or is it a broader base? is it more economic principles and job creation rather than social issues. >> let me get you to hang on. let's go to hallie jackson at the capitol where paul ryan will be speaking a few minutes from now. we've got this joint statement. let's focus and hear what katy was saying regarding the conservative agenda. this says that they were honest about their quote, few differences in the past few days, those few differences have turned into many. we saw at the start, the entitlement issue and immigration reform, which paul ryan in the past has been open
to what they call a common sense agenda related to that. on the other side donald trump wanting to ban certain groups of people and put this wall up. that alone, the issue of increasing taxes, we could go down the past week a few things -- >> reporter: future of nato -- >> maybe i should say makes that line questionable because the differences are not few. >> reporter: this is something that i asked speaker ryan about these policy differences and his point was that the republican party as he sees it is a big tank party and there's room for policy differences. the point he wants to make and what was it sounds like discussed today was the idea there is a commitment to share broad conservative principles, not necessarily the tick tok on the policy but what conservatism is and donald trump being on board with that. and wanting to hear about unity. the fact we are getting a joint statement at all is indicative that this meeting went
apparently well. otherwise my sense is you would have seen trump and ryan speak separately to the media and release their own statements. a joint statement from them. the separate tweet brief tweet from reince priebus, the chair of the rnc talking about this being a great meeting. interesting to me, you pointed this out a couple of minutes ago, the idea that they are proud of the fact that many millions of new voters enter the primary system. that is something donald trump talks about a lot and trump supporters talk about as well, members of congress, including a couple i've spoken with, say that is incentivizing to people to back donald trump and come on board. they know that will be key for them to have a shot at beating the democratic nominee likely hillary clinton come the fall. we expect to hear from speaker paul ryan on camera in the next 20 minutes. we're heading into the capitol. it's business as usual. there were school kids on the steps and things are happening normally outside but inside it is a different feeling kind of day. we're continuing to monitor as we head inside here.
>> thank you very much. joining us now republican representative marshacsha black of tennessee. thanks so much for your time. >> good to be with you. >> i think expectations can be viewed in many ways here. you do have as hallie jackson pointed out a joint statement from speaker ryan and the presumptive nominee, donald trump. but this note points out that they will have additional meetings. it does not end with speaker ryan saying that he will endorse or support donald trump. how do you feel about that? >> i think it's pretty much what we expected. today was a day about process. how to move forward so that we get everybody unified and on the same page. and working towards an agenda and tamron, i've got to tell you. i think this is an incredibly exciting time. voters have spoken. we need to be listening to them. people look at donald trump and they have seen him listen. they've responded.
they want something done in d.c. about the issues important to them, national security, jobs in economic security and for women, retirement security. >> so you mentioned jobs and economic security, donald trump said he would be open to a minimum wage increase. do you support that? >> i don't. i think this is something you look at the states and let the states handle this. it's a better handle that way. the other thing to interject into this, i think you and i maybe talked about this one time, having a training wage. when you talk to moms that have teenagers in their household, this is something that they will bring up, that there needs to be that entry or training wage. all of these policies are going to evolve as we go through. you're going to see an agenda. i think the fall campaign is going to be one of the most exciting that we've ever had. >> we are getting some new video in of paul ryan leaving the meeting. i want to go back to this
advancement of the conservative agenda that speaker ryan referred to. donald trump said he would not touch entitlements or social security. do you support that idea? >> well, what you hear from people, i think you go back and say what did someone say or what did people hear? here is what people want to be sure of. that we stabilize medicare and social security. they are trust funds and people are sick of this money running into the general fund and then there just being ious. they want to make certain that the money that the government has taken from them, that they have the opportunity to get that money back. >> is that what donald trump is saying? that is not how he describes it. >> i lost you for a second. >> you are saying what people say. i'm specifically asking what donald trump has said regarding entitlements. >> i have heard the statement that he wouldn't effect those. i think what you're seeing is that older -- individuals who
are currently utilizing medicare and social security, and individuals who are near to that process, would not see that effect. now, i think when it comes to mandatory spending and here we get in -- >> can you answer, you said you don't agree with donald trump? >> i haven't talked to him about it. i haven't had a conversation with him. >> donald trump said this week that he would be in favor of increasing taxes on the wealthy. do you support at least the initial proposal idea floated out there? >> well, i haven't looked at his tax plan. i do know he has great people like art helping work towards how we get america back on the road to prosperity, to use speaker ryan's term. they are going to come forward with some things. i don't think anybody needs to be paying more tax. you can talk to anybody around and they will tell you we are
not under taxed. we are overtaxed and the federal government is overspent by trillions of dollars. we've got $19 trillion in debt. >> why do you think donald trump would be entertaining the idea of increasing taxes on the wealthiest? >> i think his comment there was he was talking about the proposal he put forward that would actually reduce taxes on higher income earners. but it would not be as low as what he had initially come forward with. he was open to negotiation there. but there again, i've not had a conversation with mr. trump so i can only tell you what i hear from my constituents and what people are telling me they want to see done. i think that's the important thing right now. we're not going to have these debates about what the policy or the platform or the ten points we're going to campaign on, we're not going to hold those in the public arena. those are things members of the house and senate and the presidential campaign are going
to work out. what we all need to do is listen to what the voters are saying and the voters are saying we need to tighten up on our national security. we need to make jobs and economic security a priority. and when it comes to retirement security, people need to know that the money the federal government has been taking out of their paychecks for medicare and social security is going to be there. they are not going to have to worry about it. >> donald trump has said what we've seen from his millions of voters and votes was a movement. >> sure. >> this was a ground swell. you agree with that which makes me curious why at this stage in the game you don't know a lot about donald trump. you're saying you need to talk to him and you're trying to get to know him better. the voluntaters you keep referro seem to believe they know enough they went into the ballot and backed him. >> absolutely. >> i'm wondering about the curiosity. there seems to have not been
curiosity about the person who has been leading in the votes for a very long time. donald trump did not happen overnight. you have yourself and speaker ryan all trying to get to know him now. why weren't you curious about him what he was saying before? why the curiosity? >> i've known mr. trump for several years. i think what you're wanting -- you're asking for is pin down a specific policy. i'm saying, let's give the house leadership. there are a lot of folks who don't know mr. trump as well as i have gotten to know mr. trump. i think he is going to be the next president of the united states and he he would be an incredib president of the united states. >> but a few minutes ago you said you still need to get to know him and sit down and talk to him. which is it? you're either familiar with his policies and where he stands -- >> you know that, i said that let's give he and speaker ryan -- they've had a good statement. they are going develop these
policies and it's going to be a great campaign in the fall. mr. trump has wonderful people working with him. they are working very quickly. bear in mind, he has not been in the halls of congress. he has been out running companies -- >> he's been on the campaign trail for months speaking to your base. >> i have said and told you, we're going to have an outsider campaign, your people are looking for outsiders because they are sick of things, not being done in washington, d.c. and they want those things done. let's give them time to bring forward what their platforms are going to be. >> it sounds like things he's brought forward are not things paul ryan wants to see for your party. can we establish that the things that donald trump has proposed and you can call them -- few of them -- >> i'm just so sorry -- i'm losing you. >> her ear piece fell out. >> i caught part of what you were saying. >> that's okay. we'll go on. i appreciate you spending the time to talk with us. >> absolutely.
>> we have new information, congressman blackburn, thank you so much. let's go to kelly o'donnell on capitol hill. and i guess we have new information on what we could hear from speaker ryan. >> reporter: one of the things i'm hearing from sources who have direct contact in the room is that one of the big issues that was talked about during the session that has already concluded is something that republicans like to call top line principles. that means when you think of the republican party, what are the issues and values and policies that stand out most. that typically deals with things like taxes and foreign policy, views on abortion rights. and what that also suggests is that the meeting really had to do with more of identifying those areas of common ground that trump can run on as well as congressional republicans. because there is always a relationship between the top of the ticket and what they call down ballot races. in most years, there's a happier marriage than what we've seen so far. so talking about top line principles, again, that's a term of art in politics but you get
what it means. in a sense, this also tells us that some of the more controversial areas are things to diem if a size, the temporary ban on muslims coming into the u.s. you heard donald trump back away from that already. this push from unity is coming at a point where there is this tense relationship. there has been a sense from multiple sources that the bond between reince priebus and paul ryan as speaker of the house and their wisconsin background, that that was sort of an imbalance in a way to have the two of them versus trump coming in as more of a new comer. as the senators meet with trump today, i'm told to expect that they may raise some concerns to talk about things they are hearing from their voters, but again, they want to talk to trump and hear what he has to say and we're also hearing talking from lawmakers that it's time to stop showing any disdain for the choice voters have made. that's a practical application
of politics but also kind of the stages we're working through where despite all of the controversial things which will be dissected and talks about for months to come, looking for ail way to show a bit more partnership. there are important reasons for that. raising money is a big one. this is the first time that the parties have to pay for their own convention. we know the conventions will be a big show this summer. that's a big fund raising kinds of ask for everyone. are there the resources ? you need the top of the ticket to help do that. will donald trump help them raise money? that's one of the practical parts of politics that needs to be resolved, getting on the same page is important for themes and for the practical. >> we've got to go to katy tur with reince priebus. katy? >> reporter: chairman priebus, i want to ask you a little bit about the meeting. what was the mood like? >> it was a positive mood, a mood of cooperation and a feeling that it's time to unify the party.
i think both parties wanted to do that. it was great. it was really a positive step towards unification. >> reporter: what is one issue that paul ryan and donald trump were able to come ton an agreement? >> i'm not going to get into the specifics, i hate to spoil the fun. it was a private meeting, private conversation. certainly everything you're hearing about is accurate, that it was all positive and it was cooperative, it was great. >> reporter: a lot of reporting there is concern about donald trump flip flopping on issues being unpredictability. he talked about the ban calling it a worldwide problem and paul ryan has not supported that idea. is he going to back off of it? >> i'm not going to get into the specifics of what was discussed, only to say that it was -- it only can be described as very positive and i think a first step towards the speaker and donald trump working together in unifying the party but getting to know each other too. >> why hasn't paul ryan
endorsed? >> this thing was supposed to be over a month from now or two months from now. everyone was a little caught off guard how quick it all ended. we all were surprised -- >> you would not have said that about mitt romney winning sultdly in 2012. this is the republican nominee. why hasn't the leader of the republican party come out and said i endorse him? this is who the voters have spoken for? >> i was in the building in 2012 and romney was expected to win in the late months of the campaign. it was a matter of time and totally different. people are being honest about this. no one is spinning you. people didn't think this thing was going to be over two weeks ago. people thought that senator cruz was going to least go to california. that didn't happen. let me say this, very positive. and paul and donald trump had a great day today and we'll take it from here. >> one last question, is donald trump going to get in line with the republican platform as it stands now or are you going to have a new one come the convention?
>> he's in the line with the platform. there's never 100% u.n. nimty on anything. i don't think we agree with spouses 100% of the time. like reagan said, my 80% friends is not night my 20% enemy. we agree that. >> let's bring in global editorial director of the huffington post. in the statement released by speaker ryan, the word honest was used. let's look at an honest assessment of what we heard from reince priebus. he said the party or some were caught off guard, as if 60 more days would have made a difference in their opinion of donald trump. it sounds as if there were some power brokers behind the scenes who thought despite what they were saying on camera, this would be a contested convention, which would have meant a challenge to donald trump who
had been leading for much of this campaign cycle. they are saying they thought july -- something different, that's about 60 days. >> yeah, well, here's what's going on. i mean, the republicans have to face the fact that donald trump swept through the primaries and cauc caucuses, the word used by karl rove, bludgeoned his way to the nomination. he got millions of votes from people who don't usually vote republican or in those primaries. he's the guy they have to get used to and shape to the extent they can. there's a kind of good cop/bad cop going on here. i spoke with mitch mcconnell recently. i'm down here in kentucky where he's from. and have talked to him and my sense is that he went out there to endorse more quickly with the full knowledge that paul ryan was going to play the semi bad cop if you will. what they want to do here is pull donald trump away from some of the more problematic
positions to the extent they can. donald trump is like watching a guy in times square playing the three card monty game, moving the cards around. >> yes. >> trump is now moving the cards around on muslim ban because he indicated a few hours ago that well, maybe it's just a suggestion. he's going to do the same thing about the wall which will turn into a metaphor rather than a reality in a way that you can't quite pin trump down. what they want to do is make trump acceptable enough to the mainstream to make him less controversial on muslims and less controversial on hispanics to the extent they can. and they need paul ryan's refusal to fully commit to do that. and trump seems to me to be willing to be moved. trump is nothing if not transactional. they have this guy here who's the nominee. how do they make him acceptable enough so that he doesn't get
clobbered in the general election and drag down both the house and the senate republican control of those two chambers? >> how risky is that? >> that's the dance going on here. >> it's an interesting dance when you look at for example, former president carter and what he said about donald trump compared to other republicans at the time in the race, that he basically was the one that could be made flexible to your point. his book, art of the deal, his story line has been that he's willing to move and shuffle cards. you've been at his rallies and i've been at his rallies and we've seen the lines that got those people going were the ban on muslims. i'm building this wall. if he starts to pivot, those millions who voted in the primary, they are not obligated to turn out during the general election. we talk so much -- >> i agree with you. >> you could then disenfranchise some of those voters who had not been out before to vote for a
republican candidate and they start to see donald trump as the same old guy, even though he's an outsider he's now been flipped. >> i think donald trump is betting first of all he's got a big fund to draw on of outsiderhood that he's not going to use up quickly. he's going to be very vague -- the guy -- >> how do you become vague about the wall, for example? how does he vaguely describe his stance on that? how would you see that? >> i don't know how he'll do it. but there's some way in which he will try to make -- keep shuffling those cards around as i goes along. i think the -- he is playing an entirely different ball game from any other politician i've ever seen. now, it used to be the politicians were criticized for flip-flopping and lost credibility somehow when they did so. donald trump seems almost to glory in his flip-flopping.
that's his whole theory of the art of the deal, to keep things unstable and unknowable until he closes and makes the sale. i think he's approaching this entire presidential campaign in the same way. and i think the republican leaders having talked to mitch, having talked to a lot of other republican members of congress, are going to be ultimately convincing themselves that they are okay with that because they can't afford to completely abandon their standard bear because to do so would potentially create a situation where he loses by 10 or 12 points where the surge of that draws -- pulls down both the republican control of the senate and republican control of the house. so they are going to will themselves into accepting the vagueness of donald trump as a way to fry try to get through f here to fall. i'll say one other thing, tamron. there are polls out there, unreliable or reliable they are
that trump is in the ball game. the first one showed 13 points behind and more recent polls no more or less credible but more recent polls that say he's sort of even in the mid-40s with hillary clinton. that allows -- >> paul ryan is out now, howard let's go to paul ryan. >> good morning. right now, more americans die every year from drug overdoses then they do in car accidents. let me say that again, we have more of our fellow citizens dying from drug overdoses than they die of car accidents. today the house continues to work on legislation to address the heroin and opioid epidemic across this country. for those of you at our press conference yesterday, you heard from susan brooks and bob, authors of two initiatives. we're acting on 18 bills to deal with this. i'll actually be signing one of them today.
it is s 32. this allows prosecutors to go after drug traffickers in foreign countries if we believe their drugs will make it to our shores, that's going to the president's desk today. one reason we call this an epidemic, because it cuts across all demographics and affects families everywhere in america. take youth athletes, they get injured and prescribed some medication. before they know it they are on a path to dependency and addiction. yesterday we passed a bill interest dugsed by pat meehan of pennsylvania to help families and students deal with these dangers and also be born with a dependency. this is the saddest story of them all. that actually happens every 25 minutes in this country. these babies struggle to eat or even breathe. yesterday we passed a bill interest dugsed by evan jenkins of west virginia to help protect infants and make sure they get a healthy start. next step here is we'll take all of these bills we're passing out of the house and go to a
conference committee with the senate. then we intend to send a bill to the president's desk. i hope that each and every one of you will be back here when we sign this bill. this opioid epidemic is something we have to get on top of. i'm proud of the republicans and democrats that have come together to address the situation because this really is about people's lives. it is about whole communities being torn apart. and i believe we can win this fight and we must. questions. chad? >> thank you. i'm reading the statement that you and mr. trump put out a few minutes ago. you want to beat hillary clinton. >> that is true, we do want to beat hillary clinton. >> that can't be the only point of unity, you're having trouble passing the budget in the house. what makes you think you can get on board with some of the things donald trump is talking about? >> i think we had a very encouraging meeting. it's no secret donald trump and i have had our differences, we
talked about those differences today. that's common knowledge. the question is, what is it we need to do to unify the republican party and all strains of conservative wings in the party. we had a very good and encouraging conversation on how to do just that. it was important we discussed our differences that we have and also important that we discussed the core principles that tie us all together. principles like the constitution, the separation of powers, the fact that we have an executive that is going way beyond the boundaries of the constitution and how it's important to us to restore article one of the constitution. it's the principle of self-government. we talked about life and how strongly we feel about this core principle. we talked about the supreme court and things like this. i was very encouraged with what i heard from donald trump today. i do believe that we are now planting the seeds to get ourselves unified, to bridge the gaps and differences and so from here we're going to go deeper
into policy areas to see where that common ground is and how we can make sure that we're operating off the same core principles and so yes, this is our first meeting and i was very encouraged with this meeting but this is a process. it takes a little time. you don't put it together in 45 minutes. that is why we had a very good start to a process on how we unify. >> you don't think it's an issue of -- >> jonathan. >> so read that statement as well and little confused. are you endorsing donald trump? if you're not, what is holding you back? do you have a choice? >> the process of unifying the republican party, which just finished a primary about a week ago, perhaps one of the most divisive primaries in memory, takes some time. there are people who are for donald trump or ted cruz or john kasich or marco rubio and everybody else. it's very important that we
don't fake unifying and don't pretend unification that we truly and actually unify so we are full strength in the fall. i don't want us to have a fake unification process here. i want to make sure that we really truly understand each other and that we are committed to the conservative principles that make the republican party and built this country and again, i'm very encouraged. i hear a lot of good things from our presumptive nominee and we exchanged differences of opinion on a number of things that everybody knows we have. there are policy disputes we will have. no two ways about it. plenty of republicans disagree with one another on policy disputes. but on core principles, those are the kinds of things we discussed and again i'm encouraged. craig. >> i think this is going in a positive direction and i think this is a first very encouraging meeting but again, in 45 minutes, you don't litigate all of the processes and issues and principles that we are talking about. i didn't catch that.
>> did you offer assurances that he would change or moderate his tone on the campaign? >> i think it's important that the kind of conversation we had is between the two of us and no offense, i don't want to litigate our conversation through the media because i think when you're beginning to get to know someone, you have a good conversation of trust between each other. i want to keep the things we discussed between the two of us because they are very important and they are personal in some senses. that means we talked about what it takes to unify, where our differences were and how we can bridge these gaps going forward so that we're strong as a party going into the fall. >> mr. speaker, reiterate the desire to you as chairman of the convention and is that a role that you still want? >> he did. i'm the speaker of the house, i'm happy to serve in this capacity at the chair of our convention if our presumptive nominee wants me to do so. i see it's the delegates who technically being make that decision but i would honor the
decision and he did express that interest. halperi halperin. >> to what extent do you see committed to -- what did you think of his personality? >> his personality, very good personality. a very warm and genuine person. i met him for like 30 seconds in 2012. so we really don't know each other. we started to get to know each other. so i actually had a very pleasant exchange with him. point number one. point number two, there are things we really believe in and believe in limited government and believe in the constitution. we believe in the proper role of the differences in the separation of powers. we believe in things like life. i know not everyone is pro-choice in our party. we accept all but we're a majority pro-life party and these are things important to us. we had a good exchange of views on these kinds of issues, i think he's having the same conversation with the senate
right now. leaders met with him and everybody expressed opinions and exchanged ideas. the point of this is, we're off to an encouraging start. it is important we get ourselves to full strength to win in the fall because the stakes with not be higher. but it takes more than 45 minutes, mark. >> you're someone committed -- >> we discussed those issues at great detail. >> mr. speaker, you have defined modern conservative along the lines of entitlement reform and pro trade and immigration, both on the muslim ban and dealing with issue comprehensively. when you say few problems in this joint statement, aren't you p papering over these rather sizable differences and how you have tried to define it with this house -- >> i represent a wing of the conservative party you could say. he is bringing a whole wing to it, new voters we've never had for decades, that's a positive thing. the point though is, can we
agree on the common core principles that unite all of us. we will have policy disputes, all republicans -- mitt romney and i didn't agree on everything in 2012. we will have policy disputes. i'm not interested in litigating the past. i'm interested in going forward and seeing where that common ground exists to make sure we can have a unified republican party that yes, there will be different republicans that have different views on various policy ideas. the question is, can we unify on common core principles that make our party -- by the way the principles that built this country. i'm very encouraged that the answer to that question is yes. >> endorse before the convention -- >> one moreover here. >> sorry, the lady first. >> you just mentioned the millions of new voters that he's bringing in new people. i was wondering how you actually interpret his success? is it going to mean the real
fundamental realignment of the party because of these new voters that he's bringing in, how do you interpret his success? >> it's really kind of unparalleled, i think. he has gotten more votes than any republican primary nominee in the history of our country. this isn't even over yet. he hasn't even gone to california yet. it's really a remarkable achievement. so the question is, and this is what we think we can be a party to helping, how do we unify it all. this is a big and growing movement. how do we keep adding and adding voters and not subtracting voters. to me that means a positive vision based on core principles taking those principles applying them to problems facing our country today and offering people positive solutions. speaking to people where they are in life and addressing anxieties and showing we have a better plan. here's what we agree on. hillary clinton presidency would be a disaster for this country. it's effectively a third obama
term. the other thing we all know, most americans do not like where this country is headed. seven out of ten americans think america is on the wrong track. we agree with that. so the question is, can we unify around our common principles to offer the country a compelling and clear choice in an agenda going forward so that the men and women of this nation get a real and honest choice about how to fix this country and get us on a better track. i'm very encouraged that we can put that together. one more in the back. >> thanks for calling -- >> you got here late. >> your statement last week on cnn, donald trump said he was not ready to support your agenda. did he change his mind today? i assume you talked about the agenda. >> we talked about all of these issues and our policy teams are meeting to just walk through
details. again, this is a process. we just began the process. i'm very encouraged at the first meeting of this process and going forward we're going to go a little deeper into the policy weeds to make sure we have a better understanding of one another. thank you very much, everybody. appreciate it. >> the headline there, speaker ryan saying he was very encouraged by the meeting he had with donald trump who is still in washington, d.c., continuing the series of meetings. let's go to luke russert, we're getting an update on the meeting that donald trump is in right now. luke, are you there? >> reporter: yeah, hi, tamron, i'm outside the nrsc where donald trump is meeting with the senate gop leadership. they just arrived a few short minutes ago and caravan of suvs. a few takeaways i found fascinating. not quite there yet. it's a positive meeting but there are some differences, speaking that they talked about
the role of limited government and role of the constitution and how he sees that, separation of powers, that's a very important thing to paul ryan. he believes the last seven years of president obama, been too much of an imperial president and ryan wants an assurance from trump that he would work with congress as an equal partner and not a dictator as one person told me. one thing we did hear from ryan, it's very important to beat hillary clinton and it won't get done in 45 minutes but they are willing to work there. the one question i have to ask from having all of these conversations with republican members, how good is it for the party if the speaker is unwilling to give the nominee a full embrace? they can say all of these nice things like they are but if ryan is not going to go forward and say i'm 110% in, what does it mean? the nrc chairman, he's all in on ryan. you're starting to see it divide
between ryan and the chairman and ryan and majority leader and mitch mcconnell having the meeting behind me. it's going to be interesting to see how it plays out. >> let me bring in for more analysis, ben ginsburg. howard fineman is with us as well. i go back to this statement of honest dialogue. you have speaker ryan saying we cannot pretend to be unified when we're not. but is he pretending here that his goal is to roll donald trump, to have donald trump be the opposite of what he has been from everything on immigration, from the fluid answer now on banning muslims, to even as he pointed out, the separation of power, which it seems that some within the party and maybe even speaker ryan are not convinced donald trump fully understands. >> well, i'm going to disagree with your basic assumption in the question. i think what you're seeing here is people that do have different views and they will end up
coming together before the convention. and frankly, a paul ryan endorsement of donald trump given what we've seen today and what we've heard will mean much more and add to much more momentum if it comes on the eve of the convention down the road after having these discussions that do bridge the gap in the republican party. >> you're speaking of the theatrics and drama. i'm going back to who would have to -- if they are having discussions, policy discussions here, compromise means in some cases you move to the middle with things that donald trump has proposed, potentially increasing taxes on the wealthy, protecting entitlements and the list goes on and on. i don't know where the compromise would be with someone like speaker ryan is my specific question. someone seems to have to roll in this. >> you're on capitol hill. compromise and different parties getting together is part and parcel of what happens over my
shoulder every single day. it is what's going on in the democratic party as hillary clinton gives wall street speeches and has to deal with income inequality. it's what happens when you have the iraq war votes that the democrats are having to reconcile. it is true in both parties. it happens in the legislative process. this is a discussion of views so that they can get to the same place. >> will it be counted as a flip flop for donald trump if he reverses some of the things that got the largest and most passionate applause lines from these rallies we've witnessed for many months now? >> it will be precisely what you see in congress when two sides disagree and then come together with a solution. each side will say they have been enlightened a bit by the other side and here's common ground we can strike. >> does it mean donald trump is not the outsider, the rebel who shook up your party and now he is part of the establishment? >> well, i believe that donald trump has succeeded in being a
outsider by a great number of the ways he is run his campaign and that he can hang on to his status as an outsider. and come up with a policy that can bridge part of the gaps. they are not mutually exclusive and it's a false narrative to think they are. >> you're a former lawyer for the republican national committee, one of the big questions not a legal question, but it could be have legal implications depending what's in the tax returns, should donald trump has mitt romney and others called on him to do, release his tax returns? >> i think what you've seen with public -- with candidates who don't release their tax returns, is that it becomes a distraction from getting out their more essential message about the campaign. so having been through the mitt romney experience in 2012, i think it is better to release tax returns so you can talk about the issues that matter to the american people and not get hung up in the issue of taxes.
>> if you're running as a successful business person and you're using that as the primary resume on what you believe you can do for the economy and turn the economy around, well, some of them are lease named. he does not own all the building on there. he makes the money so he's a successful businessman and taxes are not going to impact that impression the people have of him. >> do you believe speaker ryan at this point, i no theknow the they need to have more sessions of the meeting. he's ready to embrace donald trump at the big convention?
>> you have to take their word that this is a positive first step that they are going to work through both issues and both men have compromised and worked through the common ground and ending up being stronger positions. paul ryan in congress and donald trump in business. neither makes any pretense of the way to stick to their principles and finding grounds to make both sides stronger. >> do we have howard strong with us? >> i think a lot of people will see this somebody got a role. we can call it the way washington dc works, the whole thing with donald trump, he's not your usual character and your usual creature of washington dc. >> he knows how to play the
game. everybody else in the leadership and the republican side of the senate to all the people around paul ryan including kevin mccartney and others have already endorsed donald trump. they have all done it. >> paul ryan is being careful and cautious and shrewd and helping donald trump by giving donald trump a reason, namely party unity to modify some of the position that got donald trump the attention o f the american people. the republicans have decided that even though this effort may have no close, they're going to say he's got a beautiful garment on g they're going to go with him all the way. i think they decided, it is a win-win for them. >> it is as wild card question, howard, they reached out a solution for donald trump. is donald trump willing to reach back and take their hand as
pointed out before the interview where he says -- i guess we'll go back to the question of is it now the ball in his court and he's going to take the help? >> what's going to happen here is they're going to find a way to square the circle on this issue. donald trump will say, i am from preserving social security and medicare to essentially democratic position and i am going to whack the budget elsewhere and that'll make paul ryan at least a little bit happy. interestingly, they agreed with pro-life issues even though donald trump has his own history on that and they agreed on that. on immigration. donald trump is going to keep to his position the best he can and give a little bit of that and the muslims ban. eventually, paul ryan will not
only endorse donald trump and be the chair of convention. >> based on what you have presented, all is well now in republican land and we should count down the next few days. >> i am not saying that. i am saying they're all going to get together behind trump in the end. >> it sounds like they have no choice at this point. the speed of which is pointed out by reince priebus of the speed, kind of caught priebus off guard. they thought they had more time and it would be a competitive race with ted cruz. >> we are watching a show being played out here of horror of donald trump. in the end these are politics on the republican side. for the most part swallowed their differences and get behind them if for no other reasons than to protect the house. halie jackson is there.
what's next and as far as what we are hearing from speaker ryan and donald trump of the meetings that are left. [ inaudible ] looks like we lost our connection with halie jackson. i think howard, are you still there? can we listen to both of them? >> howard, going back to, what do you see the next move here? >> i know there is a series of meetings beyond the conclusions of cleveland. what's happening in the middle. >> well, there is going to be a lot of policiy discussions whic is useful for the party. donald trump is not running as a party guy. his proposal is a mix of protection of entitlement, skepticism of free trade and opposition to free immigration. what paul ryan is saying look, we got to open to immigration,
we cannot lose all the hispanic vote. they have to try the biggest threat in winning the white house is the fact that at this point, they're not going to get any african-american support and the biggest thing that paul ryan can do is figure out a way to modify donald trump on immigration. >> trade, there won't be free traders. they got to square the circle and immigration. i think that's what the key thing of the republicans are for the next couple of months. they have a chance and if they cannot, they'll lose. >> great analysis. thank you for sticking around for it. an interesting hour and this will certainly continue as you see we have cameras stationed at several locations. that does it for this hour, what's happening in washington continues with my colleague, andrea mitchell.
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the summit on the hill and how paul ryan is being questioned of the presumptive nominee, donald trump. donald trump is sitting down with republican leaders none of whom endorsed him of the primary fight. we are live on capitol hill today. we have it all covered for you. we want to get right to our team with nbc's halie jackson and joined by sam stein. halie, let's start with the speaker if we can, what did we hear moments ago as you were there with the series of questions, did anything strike you? >> reporter: several things. one on personality and the other on politics and policies. ryan