tv MSNBC Live With Andrea Mitchell MSNBC October 31, 2016 9:00am-10:01am PDT
university. andrea? >> thank you, tamron. right now on a special edition, live from kent state, the comey surprise, the fbi director's halloween bombshell. from the moment it broke, donald trump has been trying to capitalize. >> this is the biggest political scandal since watergate. i bet you, without any knowledge, there was a veal volt within the fbi. >> i respect the fact that director comey was able to come back after what he did. when the other side is complaining and complaining and complaining -- >> we never thought we were going to say thank you to
anthony weiner. >> another 650,000 e-mails. i think that's called the mother lode. i think they found them all. >> fighting back hillary clinton and her allying are rallies the base with an attack on the fbi. >> it's pretty strange to put something like that out with such little information right before an election. it's not just strange, it's unprecedented, and it is deeply troubling. >> we won't be distracted no matter what our opponents throw at us. we're not going to be knocked off-course. >> and objection, eric holder on comey's actions, calling them a serious mistake. good day, everyone. happy halloween. i'm andrea mitchell as kent state today, eight days from election day, where
hillary clinton is going to try to rally the vote today, and also run out the clock on yet another e-mail eruption. today fbi agents are sorting through messages on that laptop belonging to anthony weiner, estranged husband of huma abedin. director comey's controversial letter on friday is breathing new life into donald trump's white house hopes. we expect to hearty from the republican nominee in an hour or so in grand rapids, michigan, as he claims contrary to most evidence that he's still expanding the electoral map. >> we were in new mexico yesterday, and mr. trump continues to go to places like colorado, pennsylvania, states that have been blue for a wile i think you say that hillary clinton's lead was evaporating last week gf the fbi's explosive new revelation we have a couple different paths
to 270 and we'll continue pursuing them. >> and joining me is pete williams covering the fbi in washington, has been doing it since friday when it all broke. kristen welker has been all over the issues, joining me in ohio. bring us up to date, pete. i think there has been reporting erroneously, i think, 650,000 e-mails. we don't know if there were any clinton e-mails. the latest reporting is that is the universe of all e-mails on this weiner laptop. >> that's right. they don't know how many are letters to and from the clinton server. that's the big question. we're in this weird position of sort of tapping the fbi constantly on the shoulder, saying, how is it going? how are you doing? that's not something they're used to doing, giving play by play on the investigation.
what we're being told is they're well in the process of doing this. they started it last night, as soon as they got permission from a federal judge to begin the search. the first part of this is largely automated, driven by friendsic tools and programs that the fbi using. there will be search criteria applied to the e-mails that are to and from huma abedin on this laptop. first of all, their narrow it down. they're narrow it to a time frame, because that's the bottom line here. the question is part of the e-mail investigation was classified e-mails send to her. then the question is how many of these that remain are duplicates.
that all that's times. i don't get any sense that the fbi knows how long this is going to take. there remains some oop mitch if they can do this quickly, if they can get their answers fast, if they know whether or not there are any classified e-mails or not they might biblt say something this week, after the comey letter went up last friday. other than that, it doesn't sound like we'll hear anything more from the fbi until they have some answers. >> in that case he will not respond to the demand. dianne feinstein, and others demanding answers by today because of the wording, what they criticize as very ambiguous swording of his left.
i think that's right. i don't think there's any black to say anything on to elaborate on, amplify, explain, further parse the letter that he send to congress on friday. pete, hang in with us for a sec. you've been covering this sudden frins, first of all they were stunned. they had no advanced warning, huma abedin saying she had heard nothing at all, and i guess that's because this was anthony weiner's laptop. it would been in their possession for four, five weeks. >> that's right. >> the clinton campaign was caught off-guard, we were mid flight traveling to a campaign event twh the campaign learned because they were told by reporters, who had seen it online. they sort of raced into
damage-control mode. right now their strategy is try to put the focus on director comey, to try to put pressure on them. calling these actions unprecedented. you have surrogates out today echos the remarks, their goal is to try to energize the base, but the question is, andrea, how does it impact undecided voters? here you have this flip, where donald trump and the republicans -- am comey, saying his decision was a disgrace, and that that's part of the reason why they say this election is rigged. hq hrk and democrats are now all over him. if she wins, he has a ten-year
term. this is poisoning the atmosphere between a future potential president and the law enforcement. >> well, there's no question about that, but, you know, i think we're way ahead of the game here. and it's happened before in history. things have a way of working themselves out, especially when there are serious issues that involve the fbi, law enforcement and threats to the country. they're simply trying to see how quickly they can get this work done. if it turns out that any of these e-mails are work related, any of them from the private server reflect something that
isn't in any respect potential classified, we've seen how rigorous the intelligence communities have been about determining that something is classified. they've been fighting with the state department for a year and a half. in each case they win. >> that would be the slow mark. >> that would be a very long process. >> you have to go back to the decision whether something is classified, so if there's a question about something, you have to go back to the agency and say was this classified then, and that takz time. pete williams, as i say, this is really an unprecedented situation 11 days out. obviously, thank you so much, pete.
kristin, thank to you. it's unlikely that director comey will get back in any timely way. >> i think that's plain wrong. he has a wonderful record in the past, has really not just leveled an october surprise. i call it an october betrayal of long-standing fbi protocol, and department of justice protocol that you don't weigh in with something like this. for about nine years i've been the chairman or vice chaim, and in a bipartisan basis, we just
do not even answer complaints if it's within 60 days of an election. why hasn't he stepped out and given us an interim report whether donald trump is involved with the russian hacking, when he actually called on them to do it. why hasn't he done that? why hasn't he gotten back on the prosecution of the wall street people? it's not fair. >> praisic james comey back when he decided not to prosecute hillary clinton. >> what i do know is there was an extensive investigation by the fbi under the direction of a wonderful somebody with the
highest standards of integrity. >> i think director comey could not have been more exhaustive. >> i'm grateful for the professionalism. >> this is a great man. we're very privileged to have him be director of the fbi. >> no one can question the integrity, the competence. he was a great american when he decided not to prosecute hillary clinton. >> you're known by your deeds, your words, what you do every day. one day, the people in my state could hold me in high esteem. that would send the words about me plummeting in the wrong direction. the fact is here he is coming out with this very odd kind of
letter, and he said it could be misconstrued. this could be nothing more than the storage of all e-mails they already looked at. again it's protocol. you don't put your finger on the sail. here is why it's so critical. we are having an election about the hard and soul of this country. donald trump an admitted, if his own words. a man who's called women pigs and dogs and all the rest, have gone after vet advance, disabled people. turf, mexican-americans, immigrants, it doesn't stop. now we're talking about something that really has no facts behind it, so i think we've got to get back to this
election. everything is on the ballot, as hilly says, whether it's education for your children, whether it's tax breaks for the middle class. anything you care about, so now we have comey putting the finger on the scale. you have jamie gorelick and thompson in the department of justice in the past for different administrations coming together and excoriating what comey did. >> let me ask you about the political impact. >> yeah. the reply dat contact could be most on -- your republican college from pennsylvania, and
closely fought race hillary clinton latest charpt is just a reminder of how much corruption there is in washington, and the last thing we need is a nor who will be a part of this. >> isn't this giving them -- who are saying even if you can't vote to donald trump, stick with republicans in the senate, because that would be a check and balance on hillary clinton, and this proves everything you always thought about hillary clinton. it's been one of her biggest problems, the trust worthiness issue. >> i give the american people a lot more credit, whether they live in pennsylvania or any of these battleground the fact is do you care about your kids' education? do you want a serial sexual abuser in the white house and hi
friends in the united states senate? i just give the people a lot more credit. this election is about them. it's not about somebody's e-mails in a server. it's about their life. it's about whether or not we're going to have runaway climate change and the planet won't be habitable for our grandchildren. >> first, he's got to -- >> i give the american people a lot more credit. >> thank you very much. i'm sorry to disrupt. this is a potential game changer. thank you so much. and how are republicans now trying to capitalize on this latest october surprise. sean spicer joining me next. when it comes to healthcare, seconds can mean the difference between life and death. for partners in health, time is life.
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the fbi would never have reopened this case at this time unless it were a most egregious criminal offense. now the fbi has found -- you're not going to believe this one, this just happened -- another 650,000 e-mails. how do you get to 650 -- i think that's called the motherlode. the investigation is the biggest political scandal since watergate. donald trump pouncing on the fbi announcement on friday of the newly discovered e-mails, trump calling it a big bombshell, claiming it was a criminal investigation, proving illegality. joining mess is sean spider, for
republican national committee, working closely with the trump campaign. good to see you. >> good to see you. happy birthday. >> thank you. thank you for that. please respond for barbara box, we've just heard from donald trump again, because right now what we don't know from that letter is whether or not there are any e-mails that come from the private server. we don't know if any e-mails come from or went to hillary clinton, and we don't know if there's anything relevant to the investigation. how can donald trump conclude that this is the worth thing since watergate? >> here's what we do no. this is what perplexes me about what barbara boxer said, but frankly the question today. the burden seems to be on director comey. the realie is huma abedin signed a form which states he agrees when she left the government she turned over all work-related products and devices. on union 28th, 2016, she had a
sworn court order deposition, where she said under oath that she had turned over all devices and e-mails. so why is the question not being asked twice you have said under penalty of law that everything was turned over. what we do know is that in both cases, that was not true. so the reality is that it's not director comey's fault. they lied twice, and everyone wants to know if it's the director's fault or not. >> let me pause to give you the answer, is huma abedin said that wasn't her laptop that it was anthony weiner's laptop. she was not aware she had any e-mails at all on the laptop. obviously something is awry here and we're about to find out from the fbi. >> so wait, wait, time-out. i appreciate how the media always runs to their defense, but let's -- she is saying my husband, who was involved in a sexting scandal had access to a
computer i wassen aware about that may or may not involved classified information. that is quite the defense -- >> you've made a leap to classified information. >> hold on. i cannot believe that we are sitting around having a discussion about the fact that her defense is, well, my husband may have been sexting with underage women. i didn't realize he may or may not have had access to a computer i had, which may or may nod have had classified information. this mind-blowing. there should be serious -- >> i'm not leaping to anybody's defense. >> everybody at the firm. >> sean, sean, take a bret. >> why is the director -- the fact of the matter is twice they swore they had turned over everything. twice they were wrong. the fact of the matter is this is a national disgrace. >> that is still her point, apparently, and i obviously
don't have firsthand knowledge of this i'm just telling you what they are saying, what she is apparently telling people, telling colleagues is that that's not her laptop. she wassen aware of that she and her lawyers turned over every device they knew of. now we will find out from the fbi. >> right. these are the same people who told us the first time in 2013, who signed legal documents, we found out they were lying then. there were more devices, they tried to crush them with a hammer, they deleted them, bleach-blitzed them. with all due respect they don't have a pattern of telling the truth when it comes to this whole investigation. >> if the shoe were on the other foot, if something came out about the fbi of came out with vladimir putin, a case being either exup and downed or revisited 11 days before the election and it involved your candidate, wouldn't you be crying foul? >> what i would be doing is i guarantee the press wouldn't by
running to our defense, demanding questions, saying how -- the clintons didn't seem to have a problem in 1992 when an indictment came down on chap weinberger, so again it's always a double standard with the clintons. when it benefits them. when director comey came out and held a press conference earlier this year, they talked about what a great man he was, harry reid talked about no one could touch the integrity. nancy pelosi set, quote, he is great man to which at the helm of the fbi. it's amazing how -- >> and we judd played. >> the second the instance it turns over on them -- >> in fact, we just played all of that to make that very point. by the way, sean, on friday when this was breaking, i went on the air and pointed out in 1992, i was covering bill clinton on october 30th, on friday in pittsburgh when that indictment
came down. as we all pointed out on rachel maddow pointed out that friday night, that indictment was dropped on december 12th, after the election, but george erbiler walker bush told david frost-a cruel blow and it helped to defeat him. >> but hold on, andrea, again, i've said this before, this entire thing has to be put into perspective. the only reason we're here is they rited rules and regulations from the get-go. if hillary clinton and her aides had used a state department e-mail, the rule at the time and hadn't tried to bleach it away and hadn't self-selected the e-mails, we wouldn't be here. this is a scandal of their own choosing. they chose to evade government rules and regulations, they chose to lie and lie and lie. this is where we are. they have no one to blame but themselves.
>> sean spicer, great to see you. thank you very much. thanks for being with you. >> good to see you. thanks for being with you, hillary clinton making a campaign stop, an unannounced stop at angie's soul cafe. i wish we were there before heading here to kent state. and coming up, elijah cummings joining me next. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics, live from kent state university, in ohio. there's only one egg that just tastes better. so fresh from the farm. delicious. perfect. only one egg with more great nutrition- now with 5 times more vitamin d, 10 times more vitamin e, and 25% less saturated fat. only one egg good enough for my family. because why have ordinary when you can have the best. eggland's best. the only egg that gives you so much more:
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sacrificing over and over and over again, trying to do the right thing, sometimes coming under ridicule, but yet still doing the right thing. >> well, that was then, this is now. maryland congressman eye lininga cummings, the top democrat on the house oversight committee, joins me now. congressman, what do you think of james comey now. how do you explain the difference? >> let me be clear that i still have a tremendous amount of respect to director comey, but i agree with eric holder. i think here director comey made a grave mistake. we all make mistakes, but this is a grave mistakes. it is interesting within the hour attorney general -- former attorney general gonzalez pretty much agrees with former attorney general holder, that it was a mistake. i'm not one of these people going around saying comey is a bad person.
i respect him just as i respected him on the day that clip was done, but we've got -- one of the things he said, by the way, during that hearing, andr andrea, he said, you know, i do not believe there should be a double standard, and that is going against hillary clinton. so the point was that now we have a situation where he's come out with this vague letter. we don't know how many of they e-mails are dupe lick tiff, we don't know very much at all, but this letter has been put out there. he now has placed her in a situation where she's basically being questioned and asked to defend something. she doesn't know what she's defending. one of the other things we have to keep in mind, maybe the public may have forgotten is during that hearing, director comey came in and he said that
20 all-star senior fbi agents had looked at the case, and they had agreed unanimously there should be no charges. there was no obstruction of justice, there was no intent to do anything wrong. one of the things he can do is let us know -- he's put out this information with regard to secretary clinton, also some questions about mr. trump, his association. the russians and any coordination and cooperation with regard to our elections. >> let me ask you -- did he reach out to you at all before or during this? after the controversy over it? before he issued the letter? if so, what did he say? >> no, he did not. he has not reached out to me. again, i want to be clear. i hate even sitting here having
this conversation. it pains me. as a lawyer, i can tell you that it's very important that the public have trust in our justice system that's part of our democracy. in some kind of way it needs to be corrected. i would be happy to talk to him. i would like to understand his thinking, but more importantly, i would like for him to come out and tell us what he knows or doesn't know. i'm not trying to interfere with an investigation, but clearly he could bring some clarity to this situation before more voters go to the polls. >> now, assuming that the facts are that this was anthony weiner's laptop, and huma abedin has twice signed declarations, and certainly scherr and her attorney -- the justice department told the fbi they had turned everything over. how can there be e-mails on this device if -- >> you know that -- i think you
answered your own question in the last segment. ms. abedin has been very cooperative with the fbi. they have all along been clear that there has been no intentional attempts to obstruct justice in any way, and she said apparently that she didn't even know these things were on there. again, we don't know how many things are duplicative. that's part of the problem, us having this discussion, but there's something else happening here, and we can't miss this. i don't think the public has a clue as to how much pressure has been put on comey by the republicans in the congress. they basically have subpoenaed his investigative file. that's almost unheard of. the investigative file of hillary clinton they have in their hands. that's not right. the only reason they're doing that is so they can investigate the investigator, and i told
director comey when he came before us, they have put you on trial. and that's very unfortunate. we have to have trust in our fbi. pinches tha pinches. >> thank you, congressman. >> thank you. please go out and vote. >> i didn't hear him he end here. i apologize. former attorney general eric holder calling out comey's actions, calling it a serious mistake. matt miller from the department of justice, joining me next. surprise!!!!! we heard you got a job as a developer! its official, i work for ge!! what? wow... yeah! okay... guys, i'll be writing a new language for machines so planes, trains, even hospitals can work better.
holder, sharply critical of -- >> i have two main objections. one is the fact he's commented at all on an ongoing investigation. the department's rules are very clear about that, but i think he started down this road in july when he went far beyond the normal -- >> you're saying he should not have announced his decision not to prosecute. he should have left that hanging? >> no, i think he should have announced the decision not to prosecute in conjunction with the attorney general or the deputy attorney general, but he went far beyond the usual practices in passing judgment on her behavior, in making -- in releasing underlined information about the facts and their judgment on the law, went far beyond what the rules say directors are supposed to do. he violated that again on friday. the second is the department's long-standing practice is they don't do anything in the closing days before an election, usually interpreted within of 0 days as can be seen as putting the thumb
on the scales. for him to release this letter is 1 days before the election is a gross violation of that policy. i think that's why you've seen so many prosecutors, both democrats and republicans, the last few days who have stood up and said enough, this is not acceptable. >> what do you think he should do now to fix it? should he explain the very brief letter, try to be more specific about what this does not mean, given the fact that the republicans, donald trump is saying it shows criminality? >> it's such a difficult situation. there's no way for him to absolutely unring the bell from what he did thursday. but he's got to try to clean it up a bit. i think they should try as quickly as possible -- if it means throwing fbi agents from different officesto this, to quickly go through the e-mails, find out what they have and give the american public some clarity. it's something the fbi never does and should not have to do,
but in this situation, it's really the only way we can -- >> if they uncover anything that's questionable and goes back to the intelligence agencies, you know that takes weeks and weeks. >> i know it does. if, for example, some of these, as some of the reporting seems to south are duplicates, maybe that's the kind of things they could come out and say alternates more quickly. >> matt miller, thank you very much. thanks for being with us today. >> thank glue more ahead right here on "andrea mitchell reports" here on kent state university. we'll be right back. ays were tod we were german. we were in a german dance group. i wore lederhosen. so i just started poking around on ancestry. then, i decided to have my dna tested through ancestry dna. it turns out i'm scottish. so, i traded in my lederhosen for a kilt. [aand i've never seen a rocketge ship take off like this.
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try to reset this now, reset the table. we've heard a lot from both sides. sean spicer strongly arguing against what you heard barbara boxer. what is the problem james comey -- if he sat on the material, he would have been accused of -- >> i think you have to understand how incredibly unusualing this. it became clear, the head of the fbi, not the head of the injures department, and the attorney general loretta lynch had specifically indicated she did not want him to go forward with this, because it broke with the protocols of the justice department. nonetheless he felt he had to do it any, and you're certainly not
supposed to do it so close to an election. the reason for the uproar is what comey did is so unusual. many people are using the word unprecedented. as a reporter i'm always afraid to say something is unprecedented, but it's incredibly unusual. it's unusual for comey. he is someone who people from both sides of the political aisle think of as having tremendous integrity and independence. so there's no way to put the toothpaste back into the tube. it has been an extraordinary situation. >> jane, isn't the original problem that lo ressa lynch recused herself because of that untimely, to say the least, meeting, the 30 minutes spent with bill clinton on the tarmac in private. that let james comey basically make the decision himself rather
than the attorney general make these final decisions. >> because of her impromptu meeting with bill clinton close to the end of the investigation into mrs. clinton's e-mails, she recused herself. and said she would follow whatever the advice was of jim comey in terms of whether or not to bring charges against mrs. clinton or not. comey's decision was not to bring charges. that -- it would have been the end of things probably except for maybe, you know, complaints from part sans. it would have been the end of things, except that comey then came out and started editorializing about how he came to this decision, which is also very unusual. while you've had on the show a number of people who are democrats who praised comey at the time for not bringing charges against mrs. clinton, there were critics at the time, nonpartisan people, law professors, people like steven
giller, who specialize in legal ethics. people who know what the procedure is supposed to be so that it's fair, were uncomfortable from the start when comey came out, and one mistakes has -- kind of as your other guest matt miller said, led to the next and the next and it's escalating into this amazing situation. just to put a period at the end of the sentence it's also the radio lease of the po its in the fbi interviews that are not usually put out, certainly not sent to congress as well. >> absolutely. this is all very unusual, and very prejudicial really, because it casts a cloud over a candidate so close to the election. >> jane, thank you, as always. a longtime veteran reporter and investigative reporter and author. >> glad to be with you. >> we really appreciate it.
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we are here at kent state university where hillary clinton will rally supporters before heading to cincinnati later this afternoon where she'll be joined by gabrielle giffords and captain mark kelly. they have been campaigning for clinton as they continue to promote their chief cause -- common sense gun proposals. captain mark kelly joins me now. captain kelly, great to see you. >> thank you. >> let's talk about why you are campaigning for hillary clinton. i know you agree with her on the
gun issue. other issues and how you see this october surprise, this bomb shell from the fbi director clouding the race, if at all. >> you know, certainly gabby and i are behind secretary clinton for a number of reasons. chiefly it is her support of common sense changes to gun laws to keep communities safer from gun violence. she has a record on this issue, a good record on it. she has a plan while her opponent has neither. if it is the economy or national security or the environment or, you know, marriage rights. just about every issue, you know, is where gabby and i, we are with her. we know she will be a much better president than her opponent. she's what america needs. on the e-mail issue we are a week away from an election. it is unfortunate that this
happened at this point. as a former government employee, somebody who worked for nasa for 15 years and has been in the navy for 25, we are often reminded not to interfere in the electoral process in politics according to the hatch act and d.o.d. regulations. it is unfortunate this happened so close to november 8. >> let me ask you as a former military man and someone who was in nasa for many years, do you have concerns about what the fbi director in july said was extreme carelessness in the handling of classified data by hillary clinton? >> well, he looked into it and came to a conclusion that, you know, there were not going to be charges filed. what's disturbing to me is a lot can happen in a week. to be involved in the politics of a presidential election isn't
what i was trained to do. every year we talk about the hatch act and not being involved and this does seem political to me. >> is there a chance that hillary clinton and the democrats have a shot at arizona where you and gabby spend so much time. at least if the democrats were to win in a republican state like arizona. >> i was on the phone with one of the campaign staffers in arizona. just a couple of hours ago we were talking about this very thing. it looks good. she could win arizona. arizona, i think we'll see over the years become more of a blue state. demographics does support that.
absolutely. she could win arizona next week. it does appear important to give the opponent a shot. >> we'll see you later this afternoon. we'll see you and gabrielle giffords. thanks for coming on today. appreciate it. >> thank you for having me on. >> thanks, mark. more ahead on "andrea mitchell reports" on the trail at kent state university. we'll be right back. if you have moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, and you're talking to your doctor about your medication... this is humira. this is humira helping to relieve my pain and protect my joints from further damage. this is humira helping me go further. humira works for many adults. it targets and helps to block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to ra symptoms. humira has been clinically studied for over 18 years. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis.
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plus, there are no networks, and virtually no referrals needed. see why millions of people have already enrolled in the only medicare supplement insurance plans endorsed by aarp. don't wait. call now. so dad slayed the problemt with puffs plus lotion, instead. with lotion to soothe and softness to please. a nose in need deserves puffs, indeed. and that does it for "andrea mitchell reports." live from kent state. follow the show @mitchell reports. hallie jackson is next. hi, everybody. thanks, andrea. we are also on the road here in warren, michigan at macomb county community college. if you couldn't tell, donald trump will be here this afternoon. the second of two