tv With All Due Respect MSNBC November 22, 2016 3:00pm-4:01pm PST
if a partisan legislature, rather, overturned results of contested ballots with minimum efforts of impropriety. we'll be keeping a close eye on this in coming days, as will chuck. that's all for tonight. we'll be back tomorrow with more "mtp daily." "with all due respect" starts right now. >> i'm nicole wallace. >> and i'm john heilemann. with all due respect to donald trump, who keeps trying and trying to get ben carson to join his administration, have you considered ag secretary? we hear that carson has some interesting theories about the pyramids and storing grain. donald trump upheld his day today with a very old gray lady. >> oh, my god, me? >> trump's on-again, off-again,
on-again sit-down with the variable "new york times" was in doubt this morning after he fired off a series of tweets, canceling the interview and calling the newspaper "failing, nasty, and not nice." in the end, the incoming the president agreed to sit down with about two dozen times journalists as well as the paper's publishing for an hour and 15-minute wide-ranging discussion. this is as close to a press conference that we've gotten out of donald trump since july 27th. and it did not disappoint. among the topics that were addressed, trump seemed to change course on climate change, saying he would, quote, keep an open mind about the paris climate accord, which he had previously vowed to withdraw from. he also said there is, quote, some connectivity between humans and climate change. trump was also lukewarm, at best, on the idea of prosecuting hillary clinton for her sins regarding e-mail, whatever those may be. another campaign pledge of trump's saying it would be divisive for the country. the incoming president also disavowed groups of white supremacists, who have been celebrating his election victory. and he defended his appointment
of alt-right figure, steve bannon, as his white house chief strategist, insisting that if he thought bannon was racist, he, quote, wouldn't even think of hiring him. the topic of trump's businesses came up, amid drns about conflicts of interest, potential and actual, which the president-elect also dismissed. trump said he's following law and that as president, he has more important things to worry about than boosting his bottom line. trump also fielded questions on several other subjects related to foreign policy, president obama, republican leadership, and the media, especially "the new york times," and his cabinet deliberations. so, nicole, there is a lot to talk about here. and we're going to spend a fair amount of time talking about it. so what stands out to you from his first semi-press conference. >> other than when you say old gray lady, i thought you were talking about me. >> we were not. >> so, first. i watched this, i experienced this by following maggie haberman's tweets. and this is in and of itself a remarkable new sort of development that trump is
ushering in. this sort of -- i think he's the first post-twitterverse tweeter to be elected president. and to sort of read it as it was going on, there was an interesting, i mean, as a journali journalist, what did you think of watching it unfold in realtime? in the old day, with when george bush would would have reporters in, they would come in, do their interview, they would have to go write a story, file it and then you would consume it. this was different for me as a communications professional that we got to experience it in realtime, without any prioritizing -- no one picked a lead. we got to read it as it was happening. that in and of itself was remarkable. >> in some weird way, obviously president-elect trump has put twitter in the center of his communications strategy. and in doing it this way, in arranging this meeting with "the times" editors and having a private, behind-closed-doors press conference, he sort of forced them to use his medium of choice, twitter, to report on
what he was saying rather than using the normal modes of the television camera and broadcast or the website. so that's interesting. you know, it seems to me win mean, all of these -- i would love to see the transcript of the whole thing. obviously, we really only now have snippets. now there are stories being written off of the snippets. but it seems to me in almost every away, apart from trashing the times and saying starting in the way he started yesterday with network anchors, criticizing them for the way he had treated him unfairly, in every other way, he seemed to be trying to reassure people and turn down the temperature on his rhetoric and trying the best he can, and he's kind of clumsy about this, but trying to assuage people's worst fears about what to come. >> i saw it the other way. i thought he was turning down the rhetoric to perhaps a university of voters who didn't support him, because of the most extreme parts of his campaign message. but i feel like what he's done in the last two days with the media was to declare a hot war
on his detractors in the media, and i was more interested in that, having sort of stood at the intersection of a president and his relationship with the press. it was -- it is, to me, very interesting that the meeting yesterday, which seemed to have more sort of the bombastic donald trump than what we know so far from "the new york times" meeting, that seemed to be an escalation. and that's going to cheer a lot of trump backers, and that might even bring into his fold some republicans, who have harbored a lot of distrust of the mainstream media for a long time. however, i thought that what i read out of the meeting yesterday was almost a chilling warning, really, a sort of a shot at his detractors in the media. back to sort of the bullying of the reporters who were on the trail covering him. i thought it stood in very stark contrast to what he did today with "the times". >> yeah, especially if you believe what happened yesterday was the meeting was held, a tantrum was staged, and an off-the-record meeting, and the trump people leaked it to the
"new york post." we had kellyanne conway on the show yesterday, saying, i don't know who would have possibly leaked that story. it was off the record, they should think thrice about it and it turns out a lot of people think it's the trump transition that leaked it to their favorite newspaper, the "new york post." i agree with you, and we'll talk a lot about some policy matters, but to stay on the poison you were just talking about, every administration i have covered comes into power. and believes that it has mastered a new technological tool, whether it was bill clinton with satellite television and others with cable and others with facebook and obama and facebook. they all think -- we found a way around the gatekeepers. we have now found a way to communicate directly to the american people. we will go over their heads, around the side door, underground, whatever. and they all have found out, in my experience, no, you know, you can do that a little bit, but in the end, you still need the mainstream media. do you think trump is new in the sense that he will be more successful than his predecessors at browbeating the mainstream
media and finding alternative ways to get his message out? >> i think he's different, because i don't think he's going to arrive to the conclusion that he needs the mainstream media, i think it's so apparent that he wants them. it is almost like a lover's quarrel, these fights that he has with the mainstream media. and not just the mainstream media, fox, he wants the legacy outlets to love him. and this is dangerous. and this is the kind of stuff that if a president gets too consumed by his own press, it is very perilous. he won because the voters felt they were hearing directly from him. and if he spends too much time consumed with his image in the media, it's not a good sign. >> so, trump -- we talked about things that he covered in this pseudo press conference. the one that's getting the most attention right now is about the clinton, not going to investigate her, not going to prosecute her or whatever. that's like the lead in almost every newspaper in the country. the climate change stuff is also at the top of the lead for a lot of newspapers. do either one of those things strike you as meaningful or surprising? >> everything's meaningful at
the beginng. this idea that he's going to decide that he will not prosecute hillary clinton, suggests to me that he thinks that he could have or would have. a president doesn't decide who his justice department prosecutes. this is a riddle to me at this moment. i want to know more. climate change is interesting to me, because i can't imagine that was a top three issue for the kinds of voters that he won over in the final days of the election. >> i also think there are areas that you think that trump has some really dangerous instincts and some worrying instincts. i can't believe that in his heart of hearts, donald trump, manhattanite, sophisticated, actually an intelligent person, doesn't believe that, in fact, climate change is man made and it's a real problem you have to deal with in some way. he might be worried about the effects on jobs, he might want to renegotiate some treaties, but he's not someone who's a climate denier in his heart of hearts. >> i hope not. i'm not sure where he was for sandy. even from the top of trump
tower, the winds blew. >> i think the place that is now the obvious place, the way he answered questions on it today suggests it's going to be a huge problem. he is not taking seriously enough these questions about his business, his -- the conflicts of interest inherent there, the potential unconstitutionality of things that he might want to do, the role of his kids in the business, all of it. he brushed them away, at least on my reading of how he answered the questions by "times" reporters, just brushed them away, just adds he brushed away, you know, he denounced the alt-right, but he brushed it away very cavalierly. i think both of those areas will continue to be problems for him until he articulates much more clearly what he thinks about the alt-right and what he's going to do about these massive conflicts of interest that face him. >> i agree with you, and i think those are two issues and two areas that threaten to undermine him with his own base, who's looking for a major shake up of the way that politics is normally done. >> 100% correct. we are going to talk about some more stuff that's sort of related to this when we come back from commercial. up next, we'll talk about the trump video that came out last night about his policy
priorities. we'll talk about that, as i said, in detail, not just the things he said, but the things he left unsaid right after this. o mess with that. but when (my) back pain got bad, i couldn't sleep. i had trouble getting there on time. then i found aleve pm. aleve pm is the only one to combine a sleep aid plus the 12 hour strength of aleve. for pain relief that can last into the morning. ♪ look up at a new day... hey guys! now i'm back. aleve pm for a better am. ♪ ♪ see ya next year. this season, start a new tradition. experience the power of infiniti now, with leases starting at $319 a month.
donald trump's sweeping interview with "the new york times" comes a day after his transition team put out a web video to promote his campaign pledges and the policy agenda that trump has planned for his first days in the oval office. >> my agenda will be based on a simple core principle, putting america first. whether it's producing steel, building cars, or curing disease, i want the next generation of production and innovation to happen right here on our great homeland. i am going to issue our notification of intent to withdraw from the transpacific partnership. i will cancel job-killing restrictions on the production of american energy. for every one new regulation, two old regulations must be eliminated. protect america's vital infrastructure from cyberattacks. investigate all abuses of visa
programs that undercut the american worker. >> impose a five-year ban on executive officials becoming lobbyists. a lifetime ban on executive officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government. these are just a few of the steps we will take to reform washington and rebuild our middle class. >> i heard nothing after he said "curing disease," but also not mentioned in that list of priorities, building a wall, repealing obamacare, his so-called extreme vetting of refugees, or any other of the more controversial things that donald trump campaigned on. including all that business about locking up hillary clinton. john, two things seem to be happening here. either, trump was never planning on doing all the things he talked about on the campaign trail, or he's keeping quiet about them now, to ease fears about his presidency from his
detractors. >> first of all, he's going for low-hanging fruit. >> these? >> somehings that are totally -- >> everybody wants to cure disease. >> yeah, maybe apple pie, i'll choose that instead. the main thing i took away from here. yes, first, definitely trying to calm people down and not try to lean into the most extreme of his proposals. he may still come back to those extreme proposals later on. and all i meant is those are -- the extreme things are going to be hard to get down. maybe he wants to do things again apart from curing disease that are hard to do. but the main thing i took away from that was he just sounded like just another politician in that video, which i think goes to your thing about, the point you made earlier about, is he going to just disappoint his fervent supporters right out of the gate by starting to seem very quickly like just another washington politician? >> you know who i thought of when i listened to that tape, and i've now watched it three times, i thought of ann coulter who sat right here and had just written a book about his immigration policies, and i
thought, oh, my god, not that i care that ann coulter's happy, actually, the more unhappy ann coulter gets, the more happy i will be with the person we just elected. but i thought of rush limbaugh, rush limbaugh sort of had his back for many, many months now. and i don't think he was necessarily rush limbaugh's guy in the primary, but rush limbaugh has certainly had his back. if he reverse himself on the hardest line things that he campaigned on, and that's inconsistent with his appointment so far, but it really would sort of scramble the circuits of the people who were his defenders as a candidate. >> how do you do a policy video where when you said two things, two core things, one, i will repeal obamacare on day one. well, that was always impossible. but i will do that on day one. highest priority, not on the video. number one. number two, build that wall! >> right. >> right. >> build that wall -- >> it's a fence now. >> he talked about immigration in the video. he said, we're going to tighten up the visa systems and look for anomalies. like, what are you talking
about? again, i'm against building a wall. >> listen, i -- >> i'm against repealing obamacare, so happy to hear it if those aren't on your agenda anymore. but how do you campaign the way he campaigned for 16 months and not mention either of those two things in this video. >> and these things may be more popular, but it reminds me of something jeb bush said over the summer. i said, did he scam the republican party. and he acknowledged that perhaps much of this overheated the rhetoric was a bit of a scam. >> we'll see. we'll see. maybe we're being too hopeful that it's a scam. >> hoping for a scam. >> a position to be in american life. one thing that we are thankful for this holiday season, that would be david fahrenthold, "washington post" gum shshoe, ha new report out that donald trump reported to the internal revenue service that they violated a law for self-dealing, which laws charitable organizations to enrich themselves. these new tax reforms did not provide many details. and an investigation by the new
york attorney general is still ongoing, but fahrenthold has previously reported on instances in which the foundation helped trump settle busy lawsuits or purchase charity at auction items that the billionaire aledly kept or displayed at his properties. nicole, this is -- well, how big a deal do you think this is? >> you know, i looked at the tax form myself, it's not completely clear what the reporting is based on, and i couldn't fill out a tax form when i made $12,000 a year as a local reporter in chico. >> i bet you didn't have the shoes that nice -- >> these are stolen, though. these are not my shoes. >> you did not wear those in chico. >> these are not my shoes. see, now i'm all lost -- >> you're totally distracted, aren't you? >> but this sorry is going to be another one of those thorns in his side. and i think that the voters made clear that this was not top of mind. they want to change so badly, they were willing to tolerate all of these sort of lapses in judgment, which is where i think these stories end up.
but i think that if a narrative can be stitched together that he's got business conflicts, which we talked about before, that he's reversing himself on his pledges with, and that now that the charity wasn't so benevolent after all, it was shady after his really aggressive tone with the clinton foundation, it could start to paint him as a typical politician. that's the vulnerability. >> i think we have -- we must say, for those of us, including me, and i will proudly proceed for the rest of my career, saying that i thought there were a lot of things that were problematic about the clinton foundation, there were a lot of things that deserve scrutiny, deserve criticism. that it was a political problem and a substantiative problem for hillary clinton. i still believe that 100%. but i also said at the time, this foundation is as corrupt or more corrupt than the clinton foundation. and now we have them coming out and acknowledging, oh, yes, we're tax cheats. we just cheated the federal tax system. i think it's just incumbent upon us to point it out and remind people that when it came to charitable foundations, there were sins on both sides of this aisle, and mr. trump is now president-elect. and so we've got to focus on
this and it's important. >> i know the bell dinged, but i would go further than that and say, hillary clinton is out of the picture. she lost. i think focusing on this and not losing it because we feel like voters don't care is urgently important. >> and it does tie into these questions about donald trump's businesses and conflicts of interest which are really problematic. up next, the guy who wants nancy pelosi's job as house republican leader. we'll be back with democrat tim ryan right after this. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ i want a hippopotamus for christmas ♪ ♪ only a hippopotamus will do
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the race for the presidency may be over, but the race for house minority leader has just begun. joining us now from his hometown of youngstown, ohio, is congressman tim ryan, who's challenging nancy pelosi for her house leadership position. congressman, what is wrong with nancy pelosi? as leader, that is. >> well, what's wrong is -- well, what's wrong is, we keep losing. i love nancy pelosi. she was a mentor of mine. i've got a lot of respect for her. she's an historic figure. but we keep losing, john. we're down 68 seats since 2010. smallest democratic caucus we've had since 1929. and we've got to keep score here and if a coach keeps having losing seasons, even though it's tough, we've got to get a new coach. >> do you think the minority leadership job, the leadership job in congress is both a legislative job and also has political implications. you're pointing to a political problem. what is it that you think makes you qualified, having never held
a leadership position in the house before, to lead the democratics on a legislative level, in terms of trying to stop donald trump's agenda, get things done, from the democratic party? >> well, you've got to be ready to fight. and i come out of youngstown, ohio, politics, so i know how to fight. and i think that's going to be important in the next two years. and you have to work your way back into the majority. we could talk, as democrats, all we want about infrastructure or, you know, the future of work or, you know, technology and all of that stuff. it doesn't mean a hill of beans if you're not in the majority. so this stuff is very integrated. and i just believe that under the current leadership, we cannot get the 40 or so seats we're going to need to get back that aren't on the coast. we're not a national party right now, we're a coastal party. and if we're going to get back in the majority, we've got to build that blue wall that collapsed the other day. we've got to build it back up. and we've got to go in the southern states and win congressional seats. there's going to be an opportunity to do that, because
of the cycle and the complete republican control, not just in the national -- at the national level, but also in states. so we're going to have a hell of an opportunity, but we better position ourselves properly with the right message and the right messengers to go out and scoop those trump voters and bring them back into the democratic fold. >> do you see any -- obviously, donald trump won your state. i think he won your district. do you see any parallels, or are there examples that you will follow from his political arc this year? i mean, do you see yourself and your political efforts as having any parallels to his in the way you're trying to topple, really, an establishment figure? he toppled 16 in my party. do you see yourself as the donald trump in this race? >> well, i've been talking about issues that donald trump was talking about economic issues, anyway, for a long time, and there have been a lot of other democrats that were doing that. and i think if we're going to get back in the game as democrats, it's about having a robust economic message. we can be progressive, we can
stand up for all of those very important issues that we all believe in, equality for all and all the rest, and those are important, but the lead issue's got to be economics, nicole. it's got to be robust, it's got to be every single day. look at trump, he had people disagreeing with so many different things that he did and said, but the fact of the matter is his economic message pushed out and drowned out everything else he was talking about or that other people were talking about. and we need to do that as democrats, because at the end of the day, i feel like we're better on those issues than he will be. >> but, it sounds like you're angry that hillary clinton ran a campaign that focused on other issues, on equality, i think you mentioned. are you angry at the campaign she ran? >> i'm turning the page. i'm heartbroken about tuesday night, you know? i mean, it was an earthquake that came through the industrial midwest and the great lakes states. so i'm heartbroken, but look, i come out of sports. you get knocked down, you get
back up. you watch the game, you study, figure out who the opponents are and put a new game plan together. we've got to turn the page. and to my fellow democrats, especially those that i serve, we've got to ask the question. how many seats are we willing to lose before we make a change? 70 seats, 80 seats, 90 seats? what's the number before the lightbulb goes off and say, look, we have a responsibility for our kids and grandkids and our party to rebuild and make a change. >> congressman, you're from youngstown. you understand the rust belt. . you're a champion of lunch pail economics. richard trumpka, a guy who shares a lot of your views about a lot of things tweeted out today that nancy pelosi was with us before and after the election. our agenda is her agenda, and that's why we're with her to be a democratic leader. what do you say to rich trumpka? >> i love rich trumpka, but i think we saw what happened on tuesday. and it's time for a change. look, i'm running against nancy pelosi, john. i'm having a lot of
disagreements with some people in my party right now. i'm pulling the fire alarm because the house the burning down. and we can sit here and we can play the normal traditional game and we're going to get where we got. and where we are right now is not where i want to be. we've got a lot of young people in this party that want to move up. we've got a dynamic party. we've got a good agenda. i think we understand a lot of what's going on in the party and how to rebuild it. that message is not getting out. we've got to change the quarterback. and it's time to do that. i love rich, but i think we've got to go in a different direction. >> congressman, great to have you on. we'll be back in just a couple moments.
weekly standard," john pedoris, and my former white house colleague, david frum. hi, guys, so i asked you before, so how we doing? >> well, we're watching the completely unprecedented events unfold in unprecedented ways, minute by minute, granularly. and he does not seem to disappoint on the unprecedented front. >> are there any rays of hope in the way he's handled his interactions with the press the past few days? yesterday's meeting with broadcast journalists and today with "the new york times"? >> not especially, no. depends what you mean by "hope." >> i mean for you, do you have hope? >> not much. i don't have a lot of hope. i wish i could offer you some hope. i don't have a lot of hope. >> you're a very honest man. david frum, i want to ask you -- >> he has less hope. >> i want to ask him a question, they're related questions. you're postal focused on
corruption, right? david, your attitude is, this is going to be a totally corrupt administration, follow the money. so explain why -- you basically say, nothing else matters. just focus on this. tell us why. >> i think that -- why is donald trump president? what is he trying to do? he obviously has no ideas. he obviously doesn't have a lot of regard for the job or even much of an agenda, which switches from minute to minute. what he has made clear is that he's going to get rid of all previous restraints, restrictions on presidential wealth-seeking. you know, no one has ever really tried to see, how much money can you make out of the presidency of the united states. but around the world, we have seen authoritarian leaders, sometimes in fairly modern countries, like in hungary, say, i am going to use the lack of transparency in the office to make myself seriously wealthy. and that can succeed. it succeeded in hungary, obviously succeeded in many places in the former soviet union. it succeeded in other
semi-democracies. and donald trump is bringing that project right to these shores. >> do you have this concern? i asked kellyanne conway about this yesterday on the show. her attitude is basically, he's already seriously wealthy, what are you talking about? he's a rich, rich guy. if he was in this for the money, he would haven't run for president in the first place. he spent a bunch of money and now he's going to try to make america great again. this is all ridiculous, what frum and others are saying. what do you see the problem with this? >> that would be the hope and the expectation. but the problem is, we already know, he told "the new york times" today, he used the nixon standard, the sort of post-1865 reconstruction standard to say that a president cannot exactly be held legally accountable. the only real way to hold a president legally accountable for misbehavior is the nuclear option of impeachment. otherwise, much of the way the
constitution is structured, he is not exactly punishable by the court system or the system that we have. so we are in unchartered waters, in the sense that if he's going to say that he can run his business and run the presidency at the same time, if he chooses to, not only is that a conflict of interest, it represents an entirely new idea of moonlighting at the highest level that we've ever possibly seen it. and i would just ask you one question, which is, his behavior is insane in this one sense. he got himself to the presidency, one of the greatest feats in political history on this planet. what does he need this, you know, a golf course, you know, in florida for? what does he need to talk about wind farms on a golf course on scotland for? that's pip-squeak stuff. he's the president of the united states. this should all be like, you know, like toy trains to him now. that he has the executive branch of the united states to play
with. >> since now have hope, can i ask you about another -- >> that's just -- i'm sorry, go ahead, david. >> that's just the appetizer portion. look, the working motto of this administration, to update dr. evil in the austin powers series, why make billions when you can make trillions. donald trump is rich, but not as rich as silvio berlusconi, he's certainly not as rich as vladimir putin. he's not comparing himself to you and me, he's comparing himself to vladimir putin and saying, what does he got that i've got? and the scale of wrongdoing that has already begun is unprecedented. as to kellyanne conway's point about, well, he's already rich, he's too rich to need to steal. look, one of the things, as we break away from all of the precedents of the history of the american republic, certainly the modern republic, we also as members of the media have to be able to break away from some of our inhibitions and restricti restrictions. it's hard for us to have a guest on our set, look him in the face and say, your just a liar.
but the problem is, donald trump lies all the time, every day, hundreds of times a day. and the people around him are supposed to do the same thing. they lie to us all the time. and not just like hillary clinton, you know, i don't remember lies. i mean, "what dead body?" kind of lies. i don't see a dead body on the carpet in front me, there's no dead body there, and there's a dead body there. >> can i ask you something about david mentioned? this authoritarian streak. you obviously aren't sleeping well these days. is this sort of parallel between putin's rein, what's happening in t in the philippines. i know david's obsession is the money. i've read a lot about in your publications about the authoritarian -- >> i mean, i think that something very improvisatory is going on. i think he didn't think he was going to win, so the idea was to go back to his business, now he's president and he's like,
well, i've got the business and the presidency. as long as i'm on the phone with a nigel farage, maybe i could tell him to kill the wind farms in scotland. and if i'm on the phone with the president of argentina, i could put ivanka on and they could talk business. and it hasn't sunk in yet. david thinks it has and this is the purpose, i think it hasn't sunk in yet. he didn't say to "the new york times," i don't even care about my businesses anymore, it's not important to me now. if that's true, he can divest himself of the businesses, which is what he should do. because he is walking into a buzz saw. and i don't care whether he has a republican congress or not. you know, if it happens that the president of the united states is enriching himself personally using his office, he will be impeached and earemoved from office, even by a republican congress. that is so egregious, it cannot be missed. >> this is my question, one of the things he asserted that as president of the united states, you cannot have a conflict of
interest. you guys are both republicans, okay? that's a proven fact. so, this is kind of on you here, in the sense that at least on your party whereby what happens now if you're right, david frum, that this is going to be basically a semi-criminal enterprise going forward, in violation of the constitution, trying to enrich himself in a putin, berlusconi, carlos slim level going forward, what will it take at this moment? trump points out over and over again, everyone in the republican party now loves me. paul ryan loves me, mitch mcconnell loves me. everyone loves me. what would it take for your party to say, hold on, and prosecute him and try to impeach him, is what you're saying, is the only way to stop him. >> well, there are ways to stop him short of impeachment, or at least to hinder him. and the very first thing to do is to pass senator wyden's bill to require the president to publish tax returns. that's something congress does have the power to do, it's hesitated to do it, do it now. that is a powerful prophylactic.
congress should convene a standing investigative committee to make sure that there is, that there is no wrongdoing. and that should be set up as a permanent committee, with equal numbers of republicans and democrats in my opinion, just to check what's going on. they should issue subpoenas, freely. >> let david finish. dave, go ahead and finish. >> so, you don't have to get there to impeachment, to the darkest possibilities. but one more thing, we have to bust out of some frames and we have to bust out of the idea of politics as a game. the institutions of the country are in danger. i actually probably agree, speaking of republicans, quite a lot with donald trump -- like if he were a different human being, what he would want to do. more than john, i think. i generally agree with his immigration policies, i appreciate his attempt to make the republican party more secular and more focused on middle class economics, at least rhetorically.
it's not about agendas anymore. it's about protecting the constitutions of the country, at a time when democratic institutions across the country are under great pressure. >> i will say this. we have seen -- we saw a gigantic victory in 2008, by barack obama, that was presaged by a huge victory in 2006 by the republicans in congress. and the idea that this can't turn on a dime, that if trump looks like a crook, that you couldn't have a reverse tea party rise in the democratic party, that would throw the republicans out and block him and investigate him and kill him, you know, beginning in 2018, despite the fact that senate, structurally, is supposed to go the republican way. we've seen it happen, we've seen it happen in this presidency, we saw it happen to george w. bush after a big victory in 2004. so we should not be -- he should not be secure and his people should not be secure in the idea that the love of the republican party is going to allow him to do whatever he wants for four years. >> let me ask you -- let me move
topics just quickly, because in addition to being a republican, you're also a famed desi ed zio a jew. there are a lot of things coming out of this administration that have a lot of jews worried. people celebrating with heil hitler this weekend in'i washington, d.c. do you feel comforted by that reassurance, both on the specific point of steve bannon and on the broad question of, the emboldened alt-right? >> well, i don't think those are -- those can be divorced. i'm perfectly willing to believe, people tell me that steve bannon is not personally an anti-semite, and that he's a supporter of israel. that doesn't mean he's attempting to create a revolution in the republican party that he did not consciously harness forces that are, you know, not only aligned, but actively promoting
anti-semitic tropes, anti-semitic ideas, and a kind of general world view that is hostile to jews. so, in that sense, trump can be right and wrong at the same time. and the fact that his son-in-law is an orthodox use doesn't inoculate him, but this is one of those things where we'll have to see what he does. you know, we're still talking about him talking and talking and talking wiand at some point he will act. and when he acts, we'll have a basis to judge his behavior, not just his words. john podhoerts talking about how we're all talking too much. >> careful what you wish for. >> david frum, john poedhaerts, thank you both very much. we'll talk to a pair of political strategists in just a moment. if you're watching us down there in washington, d.c., you can listen to us on the radio at bloomberg 99.1 f.m. we will be right back.
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tell your doctor your medical history. taking victoza® with a sulfonylurea or insulin may cause low blood sugar. the most common side effects are headache, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. side effects can lead to dehydration, which may cause kidney problems. now's the time for a better moment of proof. ask your doctor about victoza®. welcome back. we're bringing in two friends of the show. and they also happen to be brilliant political operatives. steve mcmahon, a democratic strategist and cofounder of purple strategies in washington, d.c., and kim al nonno, a republican strategist, she's also in d.c. that's fantastic, both in the nation's capital. good to see you both. kim, you have have had varying views about donald trump over the course of the campaign. at this moment, your view of president-elect trump -- at this moment, your view of president-elect trump is -- fill
in the blank. >> it's a wait-and-see approach, i guess, still. i apologize. i think he's doing fine. i think everybody has got their hair on fire. everybody needs to chill out. he'll be fine. >> all right, steve, i have a feeling your view might be slightly darker. >> a little darker, and that's probably not surprising. i think the interesting question in washington is the extent to which the republicans in the senate, in particular follow him or fight him. there's already some evidence tonight that some of the maverick senators like senator rand paul and ted cruz are going to fight him a little bit. lindsey graham, john mccain, jeff flake, ben sasse. he's got some people that he's got to try to keep in line in his own party. and i think that's going to be at least as much of a challenge for him as trying to get democrats in line. >> kim, do you think he will relish fighting with the republican establishment more or the do you think he will relish fighting with the democrats more? >> i think he's going to relish just being trump, which is fighting with everybody.
you know, he could care less whether the republicans or the democrats who are elected officials and have been there forever like him or not. and he's proved it. he's picked some initial picks that don't go with -- along with what some people want. and then he has others that irk the other side of the fence. so, i think you're going to see trump be trump from here on out, which is, i'll do what i want, thank you very much. >> can i follow up with you, steve. do you think that his first accomplishment might be something that he gets done with senator schumer instead of a republican? >> i think it could be. i mean, you know, if you look at what he's doing right now in appointments, you would have to wonder what his agenda is. he seems to be rewarding the sycophants and the followers rather than the republican establishment choices like mitt romney and some of the others that he's paraded through there. and so, i think he's a dealmaker, though. and he's going to ultimately do whatever's best for donald trump and donald trump's brand. if that's to cut a deal with chuck schumer, then i'm sure
he'll do it. i don't know how happy that will make his supporters and i don't know how easy it will make his re-election if he plans to run for re-election, but i do think that's kind of the nature of donald trump, to do what's in his interests and only in his interests. >> i'll ask you a question which we debated earlier on the show, we looked at that trump video from last night, that was his message to the american people on his policy priorities. and i'll start with you, steve. notably missing, repealing the affordable care act, building the wall, the muslim ban, you know, locking up hillary clinton. all of the most incendiary proposals, that were his signature proposals, not mentioned in the video whatsoever. how do you read that, the absence of those campaign promises from his, ostensibly, his first governing document? >> he seems to be taking the attitude that that was then and that was the campaign. i had whatever i had to say to close the deal, to get the deal done, and now i'm going to govern in a way that is uniquely and distinctly donald trump. i think in some respects, that's
a good thing. in other respects, it's a very dangerous thing. because there are some voters that put him into office that expect him to keep the promises that he made. i think the decision he made about secretary clinton is a smart and wise one. i think the affordable care act is going to be a lot more difficult to unwind than he thought. and i think that building the wall is ridiculous and always has been, but he seems to have stuck with it, through the campaign. i think he's abandoning it right now. >> kim, what do you think about that video? i said earlier that it made minimum look a little bit like a conventional politician for maybe the first time ever in his life. what was your take on that video? >> i would say two things. one, it's what he can the in the first hundred days, all by himself. so some of those campaign promises that he talked about require, you know, action from the congress. and i think what he's trying to say is,time going to pick off the stuff i can do all by myself, by issuing, you know, executive orders, et cetera, and get it done, and then i think
he'll tackle the next issues. i think donald trump's supporters want more than anything, actual action, something to happen, something to be significantly accomplished, quickly, and he gets that. you know, you're assuming on the same, that donald trump is -- should be judged on the same plain as past presidential winners, and i think that we've got to stop doing that. we did that in an entire campaign and he proved us wrong the whole way. i think he's going to do it the way he wants to do it. and i give him credit for understanding his voters, and knowing that they're hungry for something tangible to get done. >> can i ask you if you think there are any limits to that hunger? i guess to both of you. are there limits to that hunger, when might that limit stop short of, well, i'm not going to deport anybody, because these are families i'm actually going to keep in tact. where is the limit, do you think, that his supporters will tolerate, in terms of reversing -- we talked about ann coulter, how upset she's going to be. she might actually cry in public
if he doesn't follow through on any of his immigration policies. i agree with you, i think they have a lot of tolerance to adjust now that he's in the office. but where do you think that line is? take immigration, first. >> well, you know, people said something very smart, i wish i had thought it up. but his voters took him seriously, not literally. so i think that if he adheres to the spirit of what he said, which i think spoke to the people's fears of, you know, immigrants coming in or refugees coming in that would put america in danger, undocumented immigrants taking jobs. i think if he adheres to the spirit by, say, going forward with deporting illegal immigrants who have committed crimes, i think that's a head-nodder across the spectrum. >> so two million instead of 11 million. you think he could get away with
that? >> absolutely. i think he could. i think if he gets to the beginning of some change that has so more broad brush appeal just to his hard-core supporters, i think they'll be okay with that. at least he's doing something. i think that's the line you'll hear a lot, well, at least he's doing something. >> my own view is not surprisingly a little bit different. i think donald trump made a series of very specific promises that his supporters expect him to keep. and i think he doubled down on those promises again and again and again. and his supporters stood and cheered when he did that. you know, there's a rule in this town that you can get almost anything done if you're president and your approval rating is high enough. but if he starts adding his supporters to the list of people who don't like and don't approve of the job he's doing, he's going to have a very difficult time getting congress to do anything. the voters who put him in office first and foremost want something to happen, as kim pointed out. they want very specific things that he promised to happen. he doesn't seem willing or able to do any of those things, or at
least many of those things were missing in his pronouncements so far. and i don't think you're going to see any of them in the next hundred days or the next six months or the next four years. >> all right, steve and kim, i would loved to have time to speak to you both about the state of the democratic party, but unfortunately, that is a very long conversation and it would have made steve weep openly, like nicole wants to see ann coulter weep -- >> no, i just -- >> steve mcmahon -- she wants to see it. steve mcmahon and kim alfano, great to see you. we'll be right back. at outback, steak and unlimited shrimp is back! for just $15.99 for a limited time.
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today at the white house, president obama awarded his last batch of presidential medals of freedom to an all-star list of 20 armed recipients. our thanks to ellen degeneres, tom hanks, and all the others. our script writers decided to the no include lauren michaelses of "saturday night live" fame, come on, and vince gulley.
and bruce springsteen! holy mowly. until tomorrow, from nicole and me, still baffled by the absence of vince scully in the script, we say to you, sayonara. coming up, "hardball" with chris matthews. hillary walks. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. donald trump once called hillary clinton's e-mail scandal bigger than watergate. his supporters chanted "lock her up." well, today the president-elect said he wasn't interested in pursuing a criminal case against clinton, as he promised to do. he told "the new york times," it's just not something i feel very strongly about. well, earlier today, an adviser to trump, kellyanne conway, was asked about republicans in washington who still want