tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC November 15, 2016 4:00pm-5:01pm PST
by far. really weird. not good. until tomorrow, for mark and me, we say to you, sayonara. >> "hardball" with chris matthews is next. faulty tower? let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. as barack obama landed in greece, in germany, for his final trip to europe as president of the united states, his successor continued making plans for the kind of commander in chief he will be. in greece, president obama warned about, quote, a crude form of nationalism, taking hold around the world. back home, "the new york times" reports that rudy giuliani is the leading contender to be the next secretary of state. according to the times, mr. giuliani appears to be lobbying aggressively for the state department position.
and mr. trump seems inclined to reward his loyalty. another possible choice for the nation's chief diplomat is reportedly john bolton, the former ambassador to the united nations, a man who has called for bombing iran. the basic question is, what will president trump's foreign policy be? trump made his opposition to the stupid wars, as he called them, of the past well known. he criticized president bush and vice president cheney for leading us into the iraq war. and he called his democratic opponent, hillary clinton, a trigger-happy war hawk. let's watch. >> cheney's the one that started the war in iraq. you talk about an extremist, chamy started the war in iraq, which should have never been started. >> had i been president, captain khan would be alive today. we wouldn't have been in this horrible, horrible mistake, the war in iraq. >> unlike my opponent, my foreign policy will emphasize diplomacy, not destruction. sometimes, it seemed like there
wasn't a country in the middle east that hillary clinton didn't want to invade, intervene in, or topple. she's trigger happy and very unstable. >> our new foreign policy will put america first. now she wants to start a shooting war in syria, in conflict with a nuclear-armed russia that could very well lead to world war iii. >> well, during the campaign, donald trump also laid out an aggressive policy of going after isis. let's watch. >> i would knock the hell out of the oil areas, because they're rich as can be. >> i would bomb the [ bleep ] out of them. >> i'd blow up the pipes, i'd blow up the -- i'd blow up every single inch. there would be nothing left. we're going to declare war against isis. we have to wipe out isis. >> with troops on the ground? >> i'm going to have very few troops on the ground. we are going to have unbelievable intelligence, which we need, which right now we don't have. right now you have isis and others, but you have isis cutting off christians' heads
and others, they cut off anybody's heads. they're drowning them, they're cutting off their heads. we have to go in with force and take the oil. >> how are we going to take the oil? how are we going to do that? >> we would leave a certain group behind and take various sections where they have the oil. >> anyway, so, which will it be? an america-first policy or four years of bombing the you-know-what out of them. anyway, his choice of secretary of state will be a telling fact. joining me now, director howard fineman, also msnbc political analyst and "washington post" opinion writer, jennifer ruben. jennifer, i'm going to start with you on this. i have to admit as a somewhat dovish guy, i'm not a pacifist, but i am dovish, that he was tickling my erogenous zones when he was saying that hillary clinton is trigger happy, that we're getting into every war, cheney wants to get into a war with everyone. yet he wants to kick the crap out of isis. does that mean he wants to keep assad? how do you read him as a hawk versus dove? where do you put him on that
spectrum? >> i think it's a mistake to think he has an idea of what he wants to do. this is a guy who wants to work off of emotion and impulse. he wants to hit the bad guys and make america great. the details, he's not so clear on. that's why you have things that are completely inconsistent with another. on one hand, he doesn't want to get into wars, but on the other hand, he wants to waterboard and do other things, whatever that is. he wants to buddy up to putin, it's all in a mishmash, because he hasn't thought these things through. >> and where it really comes out as a switcheroo, if you're against the iraq war, you tend to be somebody who supports the iran deal, but he opposes the nuclear deal with iran and he opposes the iraq war. he's not confident of either policy of trying to avoid war or wanting a war. what is he? >> well, it's a total contradiction. and i think he goes on a case-my-case basis. >> he's got to -- >> i don't think that he's without any thoughts on any of this stuff. i think to the extent he does examine them, he looks at them case by case. and what he looks at in iran is
a bad deal. in other words, he's the art of the deal guy and he says, i can get a better deal. that's why president obama said yesterday in hiss press conference, so far it's working. even the israelis say, it's working, don't mess with it, donald. we'll see. you tell donald not to mess with it -- excuse me, president-elect trump with, and he will mess with it. >> i find myself rooting for the strangest people in this election. i'm for reince priebus all of a sudden and steve bannon -- >> who's name has never been -- >> i'm rooting for rudy against bolton. biden will say, everybody sentence has the word 9/11 in it. but bolton has said he wanted to bomb iran at the nuclear sites, totally for the iraq war. doesn't rudy in the interview for secretary of state say, where were you on iraq? i was for it. where were you on the deal? well, i'm for bombing iran. doesn't he ask questions before he picks these guys or he just likes loyalty? >> he just likes loyalty. that's what this is about. rudy is no walk in the park, either, this is a guy who's temperament is probably worse
than john bolton. >> i said it's becoming a revoltant development for me. >> rudy has no idea what he's doing. we thinks he's mr. national security because he was mayor of new york when we were hit. >> his international business in recent years has involved some security stuff. i'm talking about rudy. he would no something about the global security situation. but the fact is, if you talk to diplomats here, which i've been doing all day, they express a few concerns. number one, if they're worried their security attaches are worried that donald trump is going to be so close to vladimir putin that anything donald trump learns, vladimir putin going to learn. they're learning about security leaks from the people around trump over to russia. that's number one. number two, trump is pursuing a foreign policy already that doesn't have anything to do with the official governments of the countries they're supposed to be dealing with. he invited nigel farage, the head of the rejectionist movement over to the united states. they were together on saturday night. he's got direct linc links to
la penn in france. all the nationalists. typical donald trump, outside of the box. >> and the super nationalist, of course, vladimir putin, he was on the phone with him yesterday, according to trump's camp. the two talked about, quote, having a strong and enduring relationship. well, today, somebody didn't like that. senator john mccain seemed to warn the president-elect not to work with putin. this is from mccain, who just got re-elected. with the united states presidential transition underway, vladimir putin has said in recent days that he wants to improve relations with the united states. we should place as much faith in such statements as any other made by a former kgb agent who has plunged this country into tyranny, murdered his political opponents, invaded his neighbors and threatened to undermine his american allies. at the very least, the price of another reset would be complicity in puttin and assad'
butchery of the syrian people. he says the only way is to cut a deal with russia and use their influence with assad to somehow find our way to creating a state there. my belief is you're going to have to do something like what biden proposed in iraq. some kind of sectarian breakup of the country, where the kurds get their own piece of the world, the sunnis get their piece, the shia get their piece. you have to do something like that with the royal family of assad. give them the alawites, some lilt canton where they can live happily and free the rest of the country to be sunni. maybe that's too complicated, but maybe the russians can make that happen and it will end the bloodbath. it can be done. >> this is absurd. that's what president obama has been trying to do, use russia to cut a deal with assad. it doesn't work, because these people don't have the interest in -- >> maybe there has to be a more sophisticated approach, which is, we're beginning to break up the country. >> but then the question becomes, chris, what do we give putin in return for that great favor? do we give him the baltic
states? do we go easy on nato in europe? this is what the people i talked to today, the diplomats from europe were saying. they're worried -- you know, supposedly the president went over there, oddly enough, the sitting president depose over to europe to reassure the european allies that the incoming president is okay with nato. yeah, nato, maybe. but what about the european union, what about defending the eastern flank of nato and so ton? i mean, vladimir putin, he knows something about the art of the deal, too. what's he going to want -- >> what's he want? does he want the baltic states? >> he wants freedom to do what he wants in the baltic and eastern europe. >> when it comes to syria, trump's strategy seems different than president obama. >> if putin wants to go and knock the hell out of isis, i am all for it 100% and i can't understand how anybody would be against it. i've been looking at the different players and i've been watching assad and i've been pretty good at this stuff over the years, because deals are people. and i'm looking at assad and saying, maybe he's better than
the kind of people we're supposed to be backing. >> now it's such a mess over there with nerve involved and the air space is very limited. you know, it's not that big an area. the air space is very limited. now we have -- what, are we going to start world war iii over syria? >> i think hillary clinton had a rather tricky policy of, she was going to protect the air space over -- protect certain areas of syria from bombing, no-fly-zone. if you have russian planes involved, we've spent since 1945 avoiding a war with russia. i'm for that. let's talk about the two selections. i want to know who you're for. give away your hand, jen. you're a hawk, fair enough. you want john bolton to be secretary of state? >> between those two, absolutely. >> why bolton? >> because number one, he's at least been in a position of national security authority. number two, he is a much more stable, personally stable and sane individual. number three -- >> does that look stable, what you're looking at right now? >> you know, listen, we're
talking about degrees. are we, chris? it's a comparison. the other problem is rudy has his own foreign slushes and messes. you alluded to it earlier, he barely made it through a few months of the 2008 campaign. there's a fabulous interview, the late and great tim russert, in 2007, really ripping rudy, shred by shred, over his foreign connections to hugo chavez, to the qataris, the whole slew of them. this is not draining the swamp, this is imploding, this is expanding the swamp. >> i'm not sure city oil is going to get him in trouble, though. >> no, with i don't think so, but the point i would take from this is it seems that nothing that donald trump is going to do, as he puts together his cabinet and his team is going to resemble anything we've seen by way of the traditional markers of people who hold high positions. and why should we be surprised? nothing he did in the campaign was by the book. and nothing he's going to do in this round is going to be by the
book either. >> so we should think of the bar scene at "star wars"? >> yes. >> well, they had a thing going there. >> yes! >> they seemed to be enjoying themselves. >> i'm hopeful someone like bob corker is still on the list as someone for secretary of state. thank you, howard fineman, senior, top guy on foreign relations. he wouldn't be a hawk, but he might be good for us. coming up -- for me. it may be a small consolation, but hillary clinton's lead in the popular vote is growing and that's fueling some concerns to call top end to the electoral college. the small states will keep it. you'll never get three quarters of a state's constitutional amendment. we'll see. it's making a lot of people unhappy. plus, chaos in trumpland. one report called the trump transition team a knife fight rye now. what's going on right now inside trump tower is going to have a big affect on trump's presidency. i would like to see that. i wish we had cameras in there. i want to see these people duking it out or knifing it out. and with president obama overseas, how nervous are our
allies over president trump? according to howard, who talked to all the ambassadors today, quite. the "hardball" roundtable battles that question, whether trump has a cop concrete plan for foreign. and finally, let me finish with trump watch. this is "hardball," the place for politics. retiring retired tires. and i never get tired of it. are you entirely prepared to retire? plan your never tiring retiring retired tires retirement with e*trade. i'm in vests and as a vested investor in vests i invest with e*trade, where investors can investigate and invest in vests... or not in vests. sign up at etrade.com and get up to six hundred dollars.
late today, outgoing senate democratic leader harry reid took to the senate floor and launched a blistering attack on donald trump. >> many of our fellow americans believe that trump's election validates the kind of plbullyin aggressive behavior trump modeled on a daily basis. if we fail to hold trump accountable, we all bear responsibility for normalizing his behavior. so i say to donald trump, take responsibility. rise to the dignifity of the office of president of the united states. stop hiding behind your twitter account and show america that racism, bullying and bigotry
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welcome back to "hardball." hillary clinton's popular vote lead over donald trump is growing, high. as of today, she now leads trump by nearly 800,000 votes nationwide. and that number is likely to climb much higher. this has some wondering why the popular vote and not to electoral vote isn't the ultimate factor that decides the outcome of our presidential elections. well, protests have been out there taking place across the country. obviously, they're all over the place, voicing their dissent over the results of the election. donald trump himself even has reservations, if you apply that word to him about the electoral college. here's what trump told lesley stahl on sunday night on "60 minutes." >> now, for months, you were running around saying that the
system was rigged with, the whole thing was rigged. you tweeted once that the electoral college is a disaster for democracy. >> i do. >> do you still think it's rigged? >> well, i think the electoral college -- look, i won with the electoral college. >> exactly. but do you think it's rigged? >> yes, some of the election locations are. some of the system is. >> even though you won, you're saying that? >> well, i'm not going to change my mind just because i won. but i would rather see it where you went with simple votes. you know, you get 100 million votes and somebody else gets 90 million votes and you win. there's a reason for doing this, because it brings all the states into play. the electoral college, and there's something very good about that. this is a different system, but i respect it. i do respect the system. >> four years ago, when it appeared that moitt romney migh win the 2012 popular vote but lose the electoral college to president obama, trump tweeted, he lost the popular vote by a lot and won the election. we should have a revolution in
this country. sounds like bernie sanders. revolution! that tweet was deleted, of course. after that election, trump tweeted this. this election is a total sham and a travesty. we are not a democracy. the electoral college is a disaster for democracy. but today trump was back on twitter, responding to the critics of the electoral college system. he tweeted, if the election were based on total popular vote, i would have campaigned in new york, florida, and campaign, and won even bigger and more easily. and now he says the electoral college is actually genius, in that it brings all states, including the smaller ones, into play. campaigning is much different. california senator barbara boxer released a statement today saying, she will introduce legislation when the senate comes back into session today, to eliminate the electoral college, calling it an outdated, undemocratic system that does not reflect our society and needs to change immediately. every american should be guaranteed that their vote counts. but can and should anything be done? i don't think you can pass a law to change the electoral college, it's constitutional. jean pierre is with moveon.org
and gary greg is author of "securing democracy: why we have an electoral college." thank you, gary, for taking the unpopular position tonight. somebody has to be in the barrel, basically, and you're in there. >> i'm here for you. >> make the case, why it's good for this country that we have an electoral rather than popular vote? >> it works, chris. we get presidents, we get presidents with limited controversy, 99% of the time, we're not fighting in courthouses across this country, recounting in precincts. we had a diverse population that got to weigh in not just major cities, but those rural people out in western pennsylvania and iowa and ohio. it works. it gives us a broad-based democratic, because it is democratic, in the 50 states plus, the district of columbia, it gives us presidents and that -- and ultimately, good government, because everyone across the fruited plain had a chance to participate and will feel like they participated in this election. >> well, here are people that
won't be happy. this explains what barbara backseater said in the senate. if you look at california, clinton won by 2.1 million votes out there. new york went by 1.5 million votes. look at the power of those big states, almost made irrelevant, because all those numbers don't count. clinton won them, but didn't get the benefit of all those numbers. >> i think that's right, chris. >> i'm right about what those states -- i don't know what i think about the electoral college. we have the electoral college, there's not much we can do about it. >> you're right, you need a constitutional amendment, a law is not going to change it. >> little states will never go along with it. >> i agree. little states will never go along with it. but you can debunk that statement, too. because people have said, you know what, electoral college, you needed it because big states were going to win over little states, but if you look at the history, most presidents have come from big states. there's only been three presidents that have come from small states. one including bill clinton. but, here's the thing. there's the democratic idea of
one person, one vote. and that does not happen with to the electoral college. >> we are a united states. we are 50 states and the district of columbia and they all vote for a country. but the question is, are we a country or a collection of states? if we're a collection of states, then the electoral college makes sense. if we are unpeople, e pluribus unum, if we are one people, why not just have a vote? >> we are the first country of people and states. and one man, one vote is exactly how the elections operate. they just operate by states. if you abolish the electoral college, we'll end up with a situation where, what matter? the coasts matter. us people in flyover country here will not matter. if you just look at hillary, you said, was up 800,000 votes, chris. but if you look in l.a., just in l.a., she won 1.1 million more votes than trump just in l.a., which means she lost the rest of the country, but won one city out west. we don't want a country, i think, where you can just run over rural americans, farmers,
hunters, steel workers, across the country. we need to be united and we need to all feel like we are participating in this system. the electoral college gives us that. >> how far a distance would you take that argument? if it came out, for example, that a candidate loses an election in the electoral college but wins the popular vote by 5 million people, would you still stick with the electoral college principle? >> yeah, you have to. it's the rule of law. look, the election, it's really a falsehood, this talk about hillary winning this election. she won no election that actually took place. she got more popular votes in an election that was run to win 270 electorates. >> why doesn't somebody in idaho have more power than somebody in l.a.? >> they have very, very little more power. it's a very small offset. it's a the same offset in the united states senate. so you have to abolish the united states senate, if you're going to use that principle to abolish the electoral college. >> that's another problem, it seems to me that you'll have to do this through constitutional
means. you'll have to get three quarters of the state. of course, i've accepted the needo get things done if you can find a statutory way to do it. the civil rights bill of '64 could have been argued against a stretching of interstate commerce clause, but it was the only way to get some rights in this country. they were never going to get three quarters of the states, including the south to go along with the civil rights laws. >> that's right. it's going to be very difficult -- >> but there's no statutory route, is there? give me one? >> really, it's going to be difficult. it's an uphill battle. >> what about the one plan out there, i'll offer it to you. there's a statement, it was an idea, a friend of mine, rick hertzberg is pushing it, if you get enough states to add up to 270 electoral votes and they all pass a statutes in those states that no matter who wins their state, their electorates are going to go vote for the winner of the national popular vote. that would work, if they would stick to it. >> it would. i mean, i think those are ten states and they're primarily democratic states, including the -- including d.c. so it could potentially work, but i think the way that it has to be done is constitutional amendment.
look, here's what happens, right? during the general election. you have candidates that focus on 10, 15 states to try to get to that number, 270. they're not focusing on all the 50 states, because one vote under the electoral college, one vote does not equal -- one person does not equal one vote. >> we also know there's only about ten states in play anymore. the rest are either red or blue, permanently. although that seems to be changing. former new york mayor rudy giuliani defended trump over the many demonstrators and protests taking place throughout the uncu country. let's watch him. >> tell people to stop doing what they're doing. he has no more control over them than president obama or hillary clinton have over the goons and thugs that are in my city, that are destroying property, that are taking over streets, and that are yelling and screaming at donald trump. >> well, i don't know about goons and thugs, one of my sons, my oldest son is actually one of those protesters. i'm not really, mr. mayor, ready
to accept that definition. gary, what do you think of the people protesting right now? i'm sure there's different points of view among those protesters, your thoughts? >> and i'm sure there are some that are fighting because they really believe whoever wins the popular vote should be president. but look, these would be happening no matter how donald trump won the presidency. this is about donald trump, this is about losing power on the other side, this is about his statements. it's not about the electoral college. >> what do you think? >> well, i think people are starting to lose -- >> what do you think of goons and thugs? >> well, i wouldn't call them goons and thugs. but protests should be peaceful, absolutely. look, people are going to start losing faith in the system if this is the -- this is twice in the past five presidential runs where the person who's won the most votes hasn't won the presidency. is and that -- people are around this country, i've heard stories, i don't think my vote matters because they're focusing on those 10 to 15 states. and i think there is tremendous push from folks out there to really try to abolish the electoral college.
>> let's get it going. it's a good american debate. we have lots of amendments to the constitution. but i wonder what you would think of the people out there in those demonstrations, for example, in portland, oregon, who are learning that 60% didn't vote. >> yeah, well, but that goes to my point. >> a little late in their actions. >> that goes to my point that people are starting to not believe in the system. >> no, these people didn't vote to start with. >> thank you both for coming on. up next, inside the chaos of the trump transition. one source calls what's happening right now inside trump tower, i love this, a knife fight. i think that's hyperbole, but we'll see. this is "hardball," the place for politics. and light-hearted i take to the open road. healthy, free, the world before me, the long brown path before me leading wherever i choose. the east and the west are mine. the north and the south are mine.
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i'm milissa rehberger. here's what's happening. republicans renominated paul ryan to be house speaker when the new congress begins work in january. he says they have to go big to get the country back on track. in athens, riot police fired tear gas at protesters as president obama attended a dinner elsewhere in the city. and oklahoma city's will rogers world airport remains closed after a fatal shooting there. the victim is a southwest employee. and the suspected gunman has been found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. back to "hardball." welcome back to "hardball." with less than 70 days now until president-elect, donald trump, takes over, his transition team is struggling to get up and running. behind the sacenes, the faction
are contending for position. nbc news reported that former congressman mike rogers, who is the national security adviser for the transition team and a close governor christie ally was pushed out, as part of a stalinesque purge of people close to christie, according to people close to christie. "the new york times" also report that trump's, quote, transition operation has plunged into disarray, as a result of the second shake up in a week on that team that has not yet begun to execute the daunt task of taking over the government. well, today, both donald trump and mike pence received their first national security briefing. this came at the same time as pence took over official control of the transition. he'll have to play referee now to differing groups within trump tower. there are the campaign loyalists, there they are, who have been early and evacuaarly vocal supporters, loyalists. then the campaign confidants or trump whispers which include corey lewandowski, kellyanne conway, steve bannon, and hope hicks. the most trusted inner circle
includes his children and his son-in-law, jared kushner. you'll hear a lot about jared. finally, tough d.c. insiders led by reince priebus and jeff sessions. with every passing day, trump's transition team is looking more and more like an episode of can praens. big surprise. for more on this, i'm joined by a man who's been covering this, ken vogel. go ahead and teach us the warring factions within this trump tower. >> so much of this personal, it's personal driven. so chris christie, you see the purge of all the christie people, as you mentioned. the trump people are really upset about him, because he skipped the second debate. and then he didn't get an invite to the election night party and he showed up anyway. and this was like a determining factor as well as jared kushner being -- having a grudge against him, because his father was prosecuted by christie, when christie was attorney general, when he was a state attorney, working for the justice department. >> so jared kushner, the son-in-law of the president-elect has got a grudge
against chris christie. it's got nothing to do with bridgegate or all that stuff? >> well, there was also some concern about bridgegate, certainly, but so much of it comes down to the personal. so, corey lewandowski, another example, feuded just bitterly with various people on the campaign, was eventually pushed out because jared kushner had sort of had enough with him. but he retains donald trump's ear. >> who else doesn't like each other? >> well, reince priebus doesn't like corey lewandowski either. there's a lot of concerns, certainly, still towards the christie people and even within the, within the transition team, within the establishment types, who have folks like jeff sessions and some of the folks who are more socially conservative, who are very happy that mike pence is taking over, but were very concerned about chris christie and even about rudy giuliani, folks who they see as more sort of chamber of commerce, northeastern republicans. those are tensions that are not unique to the campaign, rather, that are sort of inherent in the conservative movement in the republican party.
>> there's been some questions if the transition team will reach out to gop experts, who oppose donald trump's candidacy. last week, eliot cohen, a former state official under george w. bush urged officials to work with trump. and this week, after exchange with trump transition team, changed my recommendation. stay away, they're angry, arrogant, skraeping, you lost. it's going to be ugly. so in other words, a guy like eliot cohen, who i would call a moderate neocon, not a totally hawkish guy, he was one of the anti-trump people during the campaign, he went and looked for position or influence or whatever and they said, get out of here. you lost! >> there's a lot of that, where they're prosecuting these grudges against people who they deem to be not supportive enough of them. not even people who were opposed, but people who were not supportive enough. >> this blackballing thing is going to be -- >> you look at eliot cohen and he's a neocon and as you suggested in the earlier segment, that seems to be
different from the nonint noninterventionist that trump pointed out. who do they have up there, john bolton. now, where john bolton sort of crosses some of these lines we're talking about, is he is in with the mercer family. the very wealthy new york hedge fund folk who is funded breitbart, which was run by steve bannon, who funded john bolton's super pac and you see rebecca mercer who's on the transition team. that's the populist wing. that's the pop you list base. >> i'm watching this. rudy will get the secretary of state job if it's announced in the next day or two. if it's prolonged for a week or so, look out for bolton. the phone calls will come in from the strangest sources and rudy will be hearing -- trump will be hearing them, he won't even know who's getting the call. just read the book "fountainhead."
it's like connections. the longer the decision takes, the better chance bolton gets it. he's going to have his regiments out there working trump. >> one person who we understand is in communication with donald trump is the quintessential neocon, very influential, exactly who you were talking about, sheldon adelson, the las vegas casino mogul will probably have some influence there, as well. >> well, fortunately, it's hard to find the pony these days, i don't think trump owes a lot of people with money. >> that's one way to look at it. although the mercers again -- >> but by self-funding, as much as that's going to be a bad thing in america, i think there is hope -- well, i don't want to give too much hope. it's all a limited commodity these days. hope being a limited commodity. ken vogel, you know your stuff. keep reporting for us. up next, the "hardball" roundtable and our top story, the world according to trump. we're learning more tonight about what trump's foreign policy may look like. he ran as a dove against the iraq war over and over again, i noticed. i liked that part of him.
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but now is a good time to start thinking about how you want things to be. go long™. it's fair to say that i was surprised by the election results. and i've said so. at times of significant stress, people are going to be looking for something and they don't always know what it is they're looking for, and they may opt for change, even if they're not entirely confident what that clang will bring. >> welcome back to "hardball." that was president obama speaking today in greece about the outcome of our election last week. while he tries to ease fear among european allies, the president also warned about the rise of divisive national sentiment around the world,
obviously talking about trump. >> i do believe separate and apart from any particular election or movement, that we are going to have to guard against a rise in a crude sort of nationalism or ethnic identity or tribalism that is built around an us and a them. >> he's so well spoken about this issue we're confronting right now here and abroad. it comes as president-elect donald trump is in the process of choosing members of his cabinet, many will shape the incoming administration's foreign policy. but trump has leealienated many senior officials leaving him with an apparent shortage of qualified republicans willing to serve in his administration. i'm joined right now by the
roundtable. katie packer, the republican strategist, and former deputy campaign manager to mitt romney. and michelle bernard, president of the bernard center for women and columnist at "u.s. news & world report" and jeremy peters is a columnist covering news for "the new york times." i'll start with you, katie. let me ask you about this, in the republican party, which you're familiar, are there -- do you see this fight -- let me just take it simple. rudy giuliani, john bolton. next secretary of state? this could be announced tomorrow morning at 10:00 for all we know. this to me sets the direction of hawk and super hawk. but it department say -- there's no option there for moderate, like richard haass or, you know, stephen hadley or -- he's not even fishing in that stream. maybe bob corker, the senior guy on foreign relations. but what do you make of this? >> well, with you know, we don't really know a lot about where donald trump stands on foreign policy -- >> who's leaking this stuff? >> he's made a lot of very vague sort of generalities that allow people to see what they want to see about him. but now that it's his time to
governor, he's actually got to make some real decisions about what kind of person is going to lead him and lead his foreign policy team and is going to advise him. and, you know, rudy giuliani is not somebody that comes to the table with a lot of foreign policy credentials. he was -- >> but he has -- >> the mayor on 9/11. >> he has an attitude. >> very aggressive. >> you get the message watching him, this guy's tough. >> yeah, he's tough. here's what is so striking about this. as the president gets ready to leave his presidency, think about 2008, when he came and he was senator-elect in 2007, the whole world was, you know, in economic turmoil and it was senator-elect or president-elect obama who was calming people down. and he's now doing the same thing on his way out, bookended by two republicans. and it will be very interesting to see what he does with the secretary of state. rudy giuliani likes to refer to people as thugs. he is a thug. john bolton, extremely hawkish. some people have said that he is one of the most hated people in
national security. >> in the world. >> so, what does that -- >> but beyond what you said, the president is such a gentleman. >> yes. >> you know, he's what everybody who's a conservative -- what they always say, he should behave as a human being, the president does. he's being a gentleman about this. let me ask you about this. what do you think of this message he's sending by putting rudy out there? "the wall street journal" led, that he's pretty much going to be the front-runner to get this job. >> well, what i'm told from sources inside the trump administration is that there are two people who are essentially going to have the pick of basically whatever job they want. and that's jeff sessions and rudy giuliani. as katie pointed out, trump has no guiding ideology or known principles that he applies to foreign policy. but what he does have is this overriding sense that loyalty matters. rudy was loyal to him. rudy went on tv and said really nice things about him --
>> and absurd things. remember what he said over and over, hillary's sick. look at her. and when i would challenge him on that, he would so -- >> that goes a long way with trump. when trump was in the fox hole and the campaign looked like it was going to lose by 20 points, rudy stuck by him. and you cannot overstate how much that means to donald trump. >> not only that, but in the primary, he actually paved the way. he and chris christie were the one who is gave him credibility as somebody that should be taken seriously, that could win a republican primary. and that's what i think rudy giuliani really brought to trump. >> do you think he gigged up the new york offices of the fbi to get them all excited? i always wonder. you're ready to speculate here. do you think he sort of got the fbi jazzed up to go back into the e-mail situation? >> i think that he certainly didn't do anything to dissuade their enthusiasm from getting, you know, more involved. but i was going to turn back to rudy giuliani as secretary of state. imagine him dealing with andrea merkel the way he did with megyn
kelly. telling -- >> do you think he's going to do that? >> i don't know if he's going to do it, but the fact that you have to ask. like, we should be talking about -- >> i don't think merkel is going to do what megyn kelly did to him. i won't consider megyn kelly the underdog in any of this stuff. >> i'm not considering her the underdog, but we want people who have some -- >> some manners. >> yeah, exactly! >> i think angela merkel has dealt with tougher germans than this guy. >> it's tough to slap an ideology on donald trump because he doesn't have one. he's totally non-ideological. but if you look at what he said he stood for in the campaign, john bolton could not be more different. john bolton was for the war that donald -- for the escalation of the war that donald trump insisted over and over and over again that he had opposed, when he really didn't. >> and his advocate -- john bolton has advocated for calm in iran. he's anti-russia. >> i'm going back to the issue i
care about most, the war i was opposed to for a hundred years. how can you pick somebody who's more for war, and talking him up as chief foreign policy guy. >> that's what kills his chances of actually having that role. bolton is very good at sort of promoting himself. >> do you think he might get it? >> i think he might get it. bolton has experience at the u.n. donald trump has said he wants -- >> i want josh bolten. >> look, trump had saz he wants boots on the ground in syria. >> i'm predicting rudy. if it's early. if it's two weeks from now, anything goes, because the neocons are such networkers, they'll have more phone calls than trump's ever gotten in his life. anyway, the roundtable is sticking with us. up next, these people will tell me something i don't know. this is pretty hot tonight. this is "hardball," the place for politics. urinary symptoms o. tell your doctor about your medicines, and ask if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take cialis if you take nitrates for chest pain,
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very different world view just got elected. as i said, sometimes people just feel as if we want to try something to see if we can shake things up. >> finally president obama's approval rating has hit a four-year high. in the latest gallup poll, 57%. he should stick around a couple more months. know how to cover at anything. even mer-mutts. (1940s aqua music) (burke) and we covered it, february third, twenty-sixteen. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ you're hetruck, suv. used car,
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we're back with the roundtable. tell me something i don't know. >> well, i think what's really interesting is regardless of what's being put out on paper, jerod kushner, who is ivanka's husband, is the one who is really running this transition. he's made it clear that anybody brought in by chris christie, has anything to do with chris christie, go for the ext doors now. >> don't you feel like we're covering the kardashians.
this is a reality show. how come tiffany is not getting enough attention and how is barron doing? this is the kardashians. >> my thoughts are i'm going to give you some news that you don't know on my side. >> think we're both on the same side. >> pamela harris, my classmate from howard university, fellow bison, felly jamerican, our fathers went to school today. won 48% of the latino vote against mrs. sanchez in california. sanchez thought she would get the latino vote. she didn't. >> i'm learning a lot here. >> regardless of whether or not the defense secretary -- i'm sorry secretary of state nominee is john bolton or rudy giuliani, expect to see filibusters. i spoke to rand paul who said he would filibuster bolton. i would expect someone like rand to -- >> we'll talk about the
cover people with pre-existing medical conditions, diabetes, for example, or the young adult children still dependent on his parents' insurance, yet he declares a vendetta against the only program, the affordable care act, that offers such protections. trump has assumed a similar position on foreign policy. he says that he opposed the iraq war but totally buys into the people who sold us on the iraq war. why do we believe he won't take us into another war if he makes the support of the iraq war itself secretary of state. how can he even think of naming john bolton as secretary of state or national security director if he disagrees so passionately with the war that bolton supported so passionately? what is it? is trump opposed to obamacare but supports its popular features that are known to be inseparable from the rest of it? is he really opposed to the iraq war if he supports the people who led our way into that disaster? the reckoning is at hand. to save the popular parts of
obamacare, he'll have to save a good bit of obamacare, period. if he names john bolton he's creating an administration in search of the next war. for donald trump, the reckoning is at hand. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. tonight on "all in" -- >> we got these hats at conference today. >> hats on the hill and a trump transition in turmoil. >> we're filled with questions in the trump transition, and that's just very logical. >> tonight, new questions about rudy's business ties, the, quote, stalinesque purge of chris christie allies, why ben carson suddenly bailed and the mounting conflicts for trump's children. plus rachel maddow on the global implications of a president-elect not having his act together. senator sherrod brown on the democrats first real fight to remove steve bannon. and the facebook effect. mark zuckerberg denie