tv The 11th Hour With Brian Williams MSNBC January 3, 2017 11:00pm-11:31pm PST
msnbc's live coverage continues into the 11th hour. that's next. msnbc's live coverage continues into the 11th hour. that's next. >> tonight, the rescue mission. president obama heads to capitol hill in the morning to save his legacy. after, the tweeter in chief taking aim at his own party and winning. can he lead the free world to the twitter account? we'll ask the current communications director to weigh in. and the transition no one predicted. we'll find out how it is really going from one of the president's closest advisers. "the 11th hour" begins now. good evening. i'm nicole wallace. brian has the night off. we're joined by the person who has the very same job i once held a long, long time ago at the white house. someone who spends the vast majority of her time behind the scenes helping craft the message. just 16 days before the inauguration and on the eve of
the president's trip to comment hill to save his his legislative choices. >> the final countdown. 16 days. >> it is. and your life is about to change dramatically. since the election, donald trump has spoken literally out of both sides of his mouth when it comes to obamacare. >> let me ask you about obamacare. which you say you're going to repeal and replace. when you replace it, are you going to make sure that people with pre conditions are still covered? >> yes. it happens to be one of the strongest assets. also with the children living with their parents for an extended period. very much try to keep that in. it costs but it is something we'll try to keep. >> we will repeal the disaster known as obamacare. and create new health care reforms that work for you and
for your family. >> so, my question to you is, what is the point of tomorrow's trip? clearly donald trump has some openness on some of the central tenets on obamacare. and i know it has come up in the private conversations between the president and the president-elect. what's the point of tomorrow's visit? >> first, the president will thank many of the members of the democratic caucus for really being with him in the fight. hant always been easy. it has been incredibly difficult at times. he will encourage them to buck up and stay in the fight. it isn't dead yet. we know that the american people are not for repeal and delay which is what we're looking at and being discussed on capitol hill. >> do you think the president, your boss corks live with something called trump care that was rebranded but maybe held in place in the things the president-elect talked about?
>> the devil is in the details. what i think the president will talk to members about tomorrow is to really build on the things that are working. protections, covering children under 25. people universally support. the reality is we haven't seen the exact details what is being proposed by the president-elect, what is being proposed by many republicans in congress. what we don't want to s to create a situation where there is uncertainty. the market places are collapsing and people who had health care and didn't before, don't. so there are a lot of things we don't know. the president will buck up the democrats to stay together in this fight. >> i want to turn to donald trump's statements about what he puts in quotes. the intelligence community. are you worried as veteran of the state department, as someone who has looked at a lot of
classified information over your career in the white house and the state department, that he is setting himself up for a stand-off with maybe the last government agency you want to be at war with before you even assume the office of the presidency? >> many people don't who know haven't worked in government, the agencies are filled with career public servants. it is foreign service officials, career civil servants. that's certainly true of the intelligence community. these are people who are not political. they're a-political. what they're committed to is public service and getting to the bottom of the facts. so it is really disturbing. and upsetting, i think, that this is a group that anyone would attack and certainly any president-elect would criticize. so i think that should be troubling to people. when he takes office and his team takes office, that is a
reset. but i think the events of the last couple hours on twitter are certainly strange, to stay least. >> he's already getting briefings. i have to say one of most striking and dramatic images on a pretty dramatic fall was to see the president and the president-elect sitting practically knee to knee in the oval office. the man that created the birther movement, and your boss, president obama, and i wonder if there is not some dialogue between two of them about the more sober aspects of the job. the threats we face. is there a line of conversation between of two them that sort of gets beyond the things we've been talking about so far? the politics of obamacare? the politics of being at odds with the intelligence agencies, it seems to be all about donald trump's rather inexplicable desire the chauffeur for vladimir putin at this point. is there a private dialogue? >> there certainly a private dialogue and it is private. they've talked about a big range of issues.
a big part is being commander in chief and protecting the american people, the public and certainly that has been part of their discussion. >> do you know when the last time they spoke was? >> i don't have any more details their conversations. >> do you know if the president has expressed any exasperation at donald trump's sort of insistence on operation russian president vladimir putin? >> well, the president is human, even if he doesn't show it to us. i'm sure he's moments of exasperation. what he told us the day after the election when many people in
the white house were pretty upentity the outcome baltimore we have to show the world and the country that we're classy people and that we're going to carry forward a graceful transition. there was the exchange over the christmas holiday when president obama said to david axelrod, we're calling in his former adviser, if he had been running against donald trump, he might have been able to assemble a coalition to defeat donald trump. donald trump took exception with that and responded. there has to be some events that test what i know is his eaddict to have a smooth and professional transition. >> that is absolutely true. he is a human being. no doubt. i think he's trying to keep his eye on the game here.
he is explaining and keeping an open line of communication with the president-elect. and he spees as the priority. so there is a lot of tweets and language and behavior that was true during campaign that hasn't necessarily changed. so i don't think please surprised by it. but overall, you know, he is keeping his eye on trying preserve a lot of the issues that he has fought so hard for and cares so deeply about. >> he's delivering a farewell address to put what i think you just outlined for us into one final address. is that something that he had planned regardless of who won? would he be giving a farewell address if hillary clinton had won? >> absolutely. it is pretty standard fare and it takes place typically, historically in the last couple weeks before a president leaves office. usually it is done from the white house frrgs the oval office or another room in the white house. and when we talked to the president about it, probably six
to eight months ago, the one thing he felt strongly about was doing it out in the country. chicago felt like a natural place since that has been his home for so long. that's where he is headed next week. >> do you have any sense that the issues he spoke so passionately about, in his end of the year press conference when it came to what russia really is, i think he calls them a small country that exports nothing other than arms and oil, do you think he will stay involved in issues like that? could you imagine him maybe endemocrats, more democrats to work with john mccain who seem to be focused like a laser on vladimir putin and russia who is threatening their neighbors? i know you know more about these issues than just about anyone in the west wing. is he agitated or frustrated or
angry enough about what happened during this election to stay involved in some of these issues? >> well, i think he's going to follow a bit of the model of your old boss. >> he's going to paint! >> i'm not sure he'll paint. maybe he'll find his own version of paging. and i don't think he'll be out there leading the charge on any of these issues. he wants to rebuild the party and the bench. he feels very strongly about looking into what happened not just in the 2016 election but in the past. what is important for people to remember here is that russia has a history here of trying on gain access to sensitive materials in the united states. it goes back decades, long before the 2016 election. they have not indicated they
will stop that. what he wants to leave as part of his, before he leaves office is information about what we know and what were some of their methods, information to help companies and governments better prepare for what's at risk. i think he will try get information out before he leaves office. and i think he'll be a little bit quiet for at least, take his wife on a vacation once he leaves. >> he's also made sure, i understand, that there will be presidents from both parties at the inauguration. is at this time case that he felt it was important for the clintons and the bushes and other presidents to be there, to do just what you described earlier? to send the signal around the world that we will have a peaceful transfer of power? >> i haven't talked to him about inauguration attendance specifically. at his heart, the president is not a partisan hack. he is somebody who has always believed that people can and should work together. sometimes perhaps naively so. and so i think for an inauguration, he would support and does feel strongly that it is important to have people of both parties there. >> so i remember vividly my last exit from the west wing. i remember turning in my blue badge.
i don't know if they're still blue. >> they're still blue. >> and look. we got the memo about blue tonight. you got jacket. on i have on the dress. i remember leaving the white house for the last time. and i remember driving out. i'm sure you park in the same place i did. i remember thinking, i wonder when i'll ever be here again. for the obamas, it is not just where they work. it is where they live. tell me about living in the white house with a couple weeks left. is there some nostalgia? some ang it into how much of his legacy will be unraveled by a republican controlled congress and a republican president who seem to make it up as he goes? tell me about the mood in the white house from the president on down? >> it is present emotional and nostalgic. i don't mean emotionally upset. there are new pictures, you
remember the jumbo pictures that fill west wing. >> i stole some of those. take some of them yourself. >> we have to pay for them now. so i'm paying for them. but they're new jumbos that are up all over the west wing now that are some of the best photos from his eight years in office. and it just reminds us of some of the special moments. good moments, tough moments, happy moments. and it is a reflection of that. so i think from the president on down, there is a recognition that our time is limited. and there are a lot of laughs that are happening. we've been experiencing that since december. but there is a real recognition of that. i think some of us have found ourselves a little emotional and teary in surprising moments, or in coffee at the mess or getting lunch. just recognizing, this is almost over. >> jen, thank you so much for
talking to us. good luck in the final days. >> thank you so much. >> whenever you feel like staying up to this hour. coming up for us, donald trump stands up to his own party on twitter and he wins. can he really keep this up? this is "the 11th hour" on msnbc. spaki. for a 100% fresh mouth. just ask listerine® users. the very people we studied in the study of bold. people who are statistically more likely to stand up to a bully. do a yoga handstand. and be in a magician's act. listerine® kills 99% of bad breath germs so you can feel 100% in life. bring out the bold™. go to boldpercent.com to join the bold percent for the chance to win a trip of a lifetime.
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and add phone and tv for only $34.90 more a month. call today. comcast business. built for business. many americans are afraid president-elect, that instead of rolling up your sleeves and policies, for you twitter suffices. >> that was chuck schumer on the senate floor today. with me to discuss that, the managing editor of bloomberg
politics and veteran republican strategist, mike who has worked for everybody i've ever worked for and others. governor chris christie and on the campaign of bush 43, rudolph giuliani and john mccain. for all the guff, if we can call that it. arguably he scored a couple victories today, right? >> i don't want to concede these facts. i think this will be one of the central challenges. cause and effect. he had a tweet today where he suggest that had it was not a great idea for republicans to get rid of the ethics office at the top of the agenda. he didn't say they should be doing it. he said they might not want to do it first. shortly there after they backed away and put it off until later. the other was the tweet on general motors which again, in
some world, might in somebody's eyes, might be linked to it. from all the reporting that i've read, it seems like the bigger factor for the republicans were that their phones were ringing off the hook from the constituents saying this is a horrible idea. they came to their senses. the tweet didn't give them a sense the president was not loving it. the idea that ford made a multi-billion dollar decision, a many, many hundreds of millions of dollars decision of that magnitude because they saw that tweet this morning and made decision within an hour afterwards, just beggars belief. i don't want to give trump credit for any of that. >> he said they made decision today. >> i'm skeptical that they would
make decision today. trump is a master of communication. schumer who mastered giving press conferences, being the only one to dominate new york news, to go at the communication style. he really understands the news how to dominate it. while i agree that republicans are having phones running off the hook, i don't think any of them wanting donald trump angering constituents. he has a very passionate following. and that turns on the republicans. i think that shows the power he will have when it comes to house votes. if he wants votes, he'll be able to do it. that passion is there. i don't think they want to challenge that or be the one that comes under that gaze. >> you've been in this situation. kellyanne conway goes on television this morning. she didn't know he would extend tweet. he then sends the tweet. we know trump will keep tweeting.
as president of the united states, he will keep tweeting. in his twitter voice, he keeps tweeting. there's no reason to think that will change. if he's already catching the house republicans and his own staff on the wrong foot because he is so unpredictable using this tool, what happens when he starts using it in the contech of foreign affairs, international diplomacy, monetary affairs, the stock market. the fact we now know he will stick with it and he is so unpredictable with it. this is a small potatoes thing. it does raise the specter of the outcomes coming out of those twitchy little fingers. >> is this a warning that he will respond, it was not popular to gut the ethics office. if it is unpop larg he doesn't care. he doesn't owe this victory to them. the second part -- i forgot the second part. answer that one. >> one of the things in the campaign was his ability to
question them on the orthodoxy. he is unafraid to go after both parties equally. you're right. he is going to do what he thinks is popular, what he thinks is right. and in this case it wasn't smart politics to go after this. it was really smart to be opposed to this and. it was smart for republicans to do this first. >> it was insanity. >> i remember the second part. one of the analysis i read was that he was able to wrangle the caucus. >> i think he will be able to do that going forward. if you look at the numbers he got in the districts held by republicans, he won big. the last thing they want is any climbed of primary challenges. most of the house seats are safe on both sides. their fear is on the primary side. when donald trump says he wants something, they're going to listen and understand how politically strong he is. >> so my question is, to counter
president obama's trip to the hill. should the democrats take little bit of solace in what happened today, in what we've been talking about that? that donald trump is perfectly willing to go after republicans? >> if write a democrat, i would take solace, he doesn't care about the republican party at all. right? so i would take solace in that. the thing i take more solace in, that house republicans thought this was a good idea in the first place. it was a nuts thing to do. and if you were a democrat, you would think what is the biggest potential down fall for democrats? hubris, overreach on game one. even the night before the congress is gavelled in. if write a democrat looking, there aren't many rays of hope for democrats. but that's a ray of hope. that house republicans will shoot themselves in the foot. >> please don't go anywhere. they're sticking with me. coming up, what could be the
>> you've sustain target list. if they want to take down one appointee, which is all they're going to get. the history, they're not going to get three or four scalps here. they're going to have to decide which is the most valuable. rex tillerson, because of the russia connectionering looks most vulnerable. substantively he raises the most concerns. with all the bush era heavy hitters coming in to testify on his behalf, which will certainly be a skillful and poised performance, i think it is very hard to imagine that they could take out the secretary of state nomination in the an sense of some scandal that we don't know about. >> the same about senator sessions.
i think a sitting u.s. senator, yothsds i don't know that his colleagues are going to do that. i agree with john. they have to pick one. and the question, are there any republicans, will they find one to remind the president-elect that they matter, managing mccain, marco rubio, lindsey graham, this group of folks. they're u.s. senators and didn't always get along with donald trump. i agree the democrats will have to focus on it. >> the interesting thing, he gets whole floor. he will get confirmed. given that the margin is so small, three republicans defect and he's done. it is not impossible that he'll get strangled in the crib. >> like i said -- i think he will get through. that's where it will happen. >> that's where the fight is and he gets out. >> all right. so my thanks to both of you. that will do it for this edition of "the 11th hour." "hardball" with chris matthews starts right now.
trump trumps. let's play "hardball." >> good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. now the scene of the action. for a while now, we wondered who would call the shots. will it be the republican power base in congress which has been raring to go with its own agenda for years? will it be donald trump who takes off 17 days from now but is already governing by tweet? earlier today we got an answer. the republicans acted last night to drastically curtail the powers of the independent office of congressional ethics. bringing it in under the tight supervision.