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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  March 28, 2017 1:00am-2:01am PDT

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off to the mark hopkins hotel. take a look at, come out if you can. rachel maddow show starts right now. >> i think we should start a new >> i think we should start a new thing where you tell people where they can come meet you. >> exactly. here's where i'll be, everybody. >> come and get it. well done my friend. thank you so much for joining us this hour. in the cold war, the united states and the soviet union were the opposing super powers in the world. two huge countries with huge militaries, huge nuclear arrests analyze and influence beyond the bounds of the considerable home territory. it was a match in force of equals. but despite that simplistic construct, the whole super powers modeling. the u.s. and the soviet union before not really equal counter
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parts. they were not equal in terms of their strength, their ability to project power, their resilience. the united states was far stronger in terms of the economy, in terms of international influence, the soviet union had tight and oftentimes brutal control turnover statements and territories that were within their orbit. but their orbit was kind of limited. the united states had influence and involvement and even an accepted leadership role over a much bigger portion of the globe or at least a much higher number of other countries, also our role in international institutions, countries we were in alliance with that we could look to as friends for all sorts of of things. we had more influence in the world. the united states we can also now tell in retro aspect was far better in our ability to manage
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our own destiny. we were more stable, for all our faults, we were more stable. the united states didn't collapse. the soviet union did. that said, one area where the u.s. and the soviet union before quite evenly matched, owner other than the nuclear stuff, one place where the dueling myth was in intelligence, our spy agencies, as opposed to every other competition, the spy agencies tried to beat each other every single day and they were well matched and the spy versus spy stuff didn't stop at the end of the cold war. you can talk to u.s. intelligence officials even today and they will tell you how
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much respect they have for the russian capacity when it comes to spying and intelligence. still though, even if the spy agencies in our two countries are well matched and i think most people would say they are, they're equally good, that doesn't mean they're the same. for example, one of the things that they've got that we do not is a kbg university. if you want to join the fbi or cia in this country, you go off and you do training, but it's not literally spy college. in russia, they've got a spy college. it's not a conceptual thing. it was inspired by lennon. it was called the central school of the nkvd for a while. then it was called the higher school of the kbg. that was a nice honor for hi.
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they named kbb college after him. then it became known as the academy of the federal security service of russia. fsb school, it's an actual college. it's a crypt to go ra if i institute. russia's fsb academy is in the news today because it is where this guy went to school, the fsb academy is the alma matter of sergei gorekov. he was fwhorn 1968 so he's 48 or 49 years old. the same-year i graduated from college in california, 1994, he graduated from spy college in
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moscow. he went to the fsb academy. after that he went to work at the oil company right up to when the government seized that oil company. he didn't have all that much of an impressive resume, but he was really well connected so he went from spy school to yukos to being deputy chairman of the biggest government-run bank in russia. it's a bank i think it's called spur bank. i don't know how else to say it. he was deputy chairman of the largest state run bank in russia from 2008 until last year. if the name of that bank is familiar to you from recent news, if you'll like you've seen that name recently, it's because on friday we learned that sper sbang in trouble in the united states. the federal prosecutor's office
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in new york that until recently was run by preet bharara. that prosecutor's office brought charges against sper bank, they brought criminal charges against them in conjunction with granite mining firm. you don't need to know all the details, but basically the bank is charged with helping to destroy an industry in russia in helping pick a monopoly twoirn take over the granite mining in that country. that's a typical story how corruption works in vladimir putin's russia. people talk about the oligarchs, that's kind of the dynamic when it comes to putin and the oligarchs. this bank is the largest state-run bank in russia, sper bank, and the reason it made american news on friday is because the bank announced on friday they've hired an american
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lawyer to defend them in this case. they hired one of donald trump's personal lawyers. with the "new york times" published the tax returns last year, this is the lawyer who threatened to sue "the new york times." when they wrote about all the women to could you see donald trump of as well abusing them and threatened to sue the paper for that one too, this was the lawyer who he sent to threaten to sue them. buzzfeed reports the same lawyer also represented him in the atlantic city casino financing. but now this guy who has ban trump lawyer for a decade and a half, he's now just been hired by the biggest state-owned bank in russia. and until last year, sergei gorekov, the guy who went to kbg college, he was deputy chairman of that bank. he is no longer though because
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he is still rising in his career. he's no longer deputy chairman of anything. sergei gorekov, the guy who went to kbg clerjs he's now the head guy at another government-owned russian bank, and is one is a doozie, and this is the one that gets into american politics. january 26th, 2015, 1145 in the morning in river detail new york, fbi agents swooped in at a super patrick and arrested a dude who was doing his grocery shopping. this guy got handcuffed and taken out of there without incident. he didn't fight. turns out that guy was a russian spy and he worked at sergei gorekov's bank. federal agents picked up that guy at the supermarket and charged him with being an unregistered agent of a foreign power, russia.
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in march 2016 he pled guilty. the criminal indictment in this case was absolutely riveting. he not only used his position at the bank to secretly gather information that he fed as intentionally to the russian spies, he full on stole u.s. government documents which is part of how they caught him. he was involved in trying to steal information about u.s. government sanctions against russia, which russian institutions were going to be targeted for sanctions, which people were going to be targeted. object extensively he worked at this bank. he was an undercover russian agent, because he didn't have a connection to an embassy, he didn't have any way to secretly transmit his intel home to moscow center, to the spy hub back home. so it's all laid out in the indictment.
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held, sir, rip titiously hand off scraps of paper and do dead drops and passing stuff, all that spy movie spuf. he and these other russian spies would do that in new york. they got out and fled to moscow before they could be arrested. the one who got caught and put on trial in new york, hektd 30 months in prison. his day job when he wasn't being a russian spy was that he was the number two official in new york for this bank which is called veb. like sper bank, veb is also controlled by the russian government. the prime minister on the supervisory bank, in twine that's the bank that paid $4.5 billion to the billionaire who put paul manafort on a $10 million a year retainer to
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promote the interests of putin's government in the united states and around the world. the oligarch closest to putin for a long period recently. putin shoveled $4.5 billion to him through that bank. this bank is basically putin's to do with as he wishes. he funds his favorite oligarchs. he uses it to mess with countries he wants to mess with. for example, if he wants to mess with ukraine, he'll have this bank drop $8 billion into the hands of his patterns for them to grab a bunch of important assets in ukraine. so then russia's president's friends own all these critical assets in ukraine, that means ukraine is tied even closer to russia and to him. ukraine has even less hope for magnet its independence.
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that's what he uses this bank for. the sochi olympics, he funded the stuff through this bank. it's his bank. he controls it. his sprooirms on the board of this bank. and the new chairman of that bank is the guy who started off his career in kbg school, sergei gorekov and today we learned he met with jared kushner, which is nuts in its own right. perhaps the most nuts thing about it is that we are only finding out about it now. i mean, michael flynn was fired as national security adviser for not fully disclosing his ties with the russian government. nevertheless we're learning today for the first time from the "new york times" that jared kushner met with michael flynn and the russian ambassador during the transition. then there was a follow-up
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meeting with the russian ambassador to which jared sent his assistant. in other news, jared has an assistant. but now we have learned that in addition to those two meetings with the ambassador during the transition, jared kushner also met during a transition with sergei gorekov, the head of putin's own state run bank which he uses for all sorts of things and where he's got just the right guy with just the right training at the top to keep things sort of [ clears throat ] in house. it wasn't just generically affected by banking sanctions on russia generally, this bank was named specifically, singled out for sanctions because it acts as an agency for the russian government because it's controlled directly by putin and his government.
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why is the guy running that bank getting a bheegt jared? he's 36-year-olds. he's not that much oriole than sergei was when he got out of spy school in moscow. maybe they talked about that. the white house and the bank have both confirmed the meeting took place. there has been no incredible explanation thus far for why this meeting between aread and the head of this russian bank was not disclosed until now, particularly when other senior white house officials were getting fired or having to recuse themselves for major parts of their jobs because of their undisclosed meetings with russian government officials. incredibly, this news about jared kushner comes on the same day the white house has announced that jared kushner is about to take charge of kind of everything in the white house. i mean, he already had an unusually expansive portfolio.
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we already knew jared kushner, the 36 year old son-in-law of the president, we already knew he was the white house point person on middle east peace and china and canada and mexico, including building the wall. we're also told he was in charge of trade deals in the white house, which is kind of a big responsibility on its own. we learned today from the white house that in addition to all those things, jared kushner's now being put in charge of the white house office of american innovation. in addition to all the other things he's responsible for, did i mention middle east peace is one of them? in addition to all that other stuff he's in charge of, he'll also be in charge of the v.a. what the "washington post" describes as reimagining the v.a.. oh, good.
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after inheriting his dad's real estate company, he shouldn't definitely be able to handle that one super fast, second largest agency in the u.s. government, one of the largest organizations on earth responsible for the care of tens of millions of american veterans. in addition to reimagining the v.a. he will also be in charge of the infrastructure plan and installing brand new technology for every single department and agency of the federal government and he'll be in charge of branding and getting rid of the opioid crisis. we learned today that they will be summoning him about his contacts with the russian banking chairman at the head of a putin-controlled russian bank multiple known links to spy agencies that's currently under investigation by the u.s. government.
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i don't know how much time he's going to have to spend preparing for that testimony, but it hope it's not going to cut into the time he's going to use for all the countries and overhauling the technology of the government and reimagining the v.a.
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a little bit of breaking news. the top democrat in the house, nancy pelosi, just moments ago
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has called for the chairman of the house intelligence committee, congressman devin nunez for him to recuse himself from the trump/russian investigation he's supposed to be leading in the house. we had calls earlier in the day today from the top democrat in the senate, chuck schumer that paul ryan should step in and replace devin nunez either in that role specifically or running that committee generally. there's a lot in motion on this story right now. it was a week ing a today that the fbi director confirmed that there's an ongoing counterintelligence investigation into the russian attack into our elections last year and whether or not the trump campaign knowingly colluded in that attack. the second hearing on that top was supposed to be tomorrow morning. it was going to be tomorrow until quietly on friday the republican chairman of the intelligence committee, devin nunez canceled that public hearing.
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initially he said that it wasn't canceled, it was just postponed indefinitely. nothing to see here, just a scheduling conflict. he said he had to cancel, i mien postpone that public hearing scheduled for tomorrow because he said the committee instead needed to go into a closed session tomorrow where they would hear more closed-door, classified testimony from the guys who testified at the hearing last week, from the fbi director and the head of the nsa. that's how he explained why he had to cancel tomorrow's public hearing because a closed door session was going to happen instead. that closed-door session tomorrow has also been canceled. oldly, even though that was the excuse for getting rid of the public hearing, they didn't reinstate the public hearing.
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it's weird if it's just a scheduling conflict. you have a long standing plan with a friend and suddenly something comes up for work and you're like i'm so sorry. oh, wait the work thing got canceled too, we're back on. that's happened. that's the explanation that the house intelligence chairman gave for cancelling that public hearing tomorrow. the explanation for why he gave that explanation for why he canceled that has fallen apart, but there's still no public hearing and it's not rescheduled. it's starting to look like that house intelligence investigation under the leadership of devin nunez is blowing up. there are screaming calls today from democrats that chairman nunez should recuse himself from this investigation or that house speaker paul ryan should replace him as chair of that committee. after he called two dramatic press conferences last week saying he was rushed to the
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white house about troubling information about american intelligence incepts, there's been explanation and wondering since then, a lot of unclear and contradictory information as to where he got that troubling information that he rushed straight to the white house with once he got it. today chairman nunez confirmed that where he got that information from was, quote, the white house grounds. hu h? on the light before his breathless press conference where he insisted to that he had to bring this to the white house, he went to the white house grounds to receive that information in the first place. if that sounds absurd to you, you are not alone. there's nobody on either side of the aisle in washington who says they have any idea what devin
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dunes is talking about in this regard or what he's up to and that includes the intelligence agencies that are talking about to members of congress and other intelligence committee officials who are supposed to have access to all the same information that he has. the house intelligence investigation of trump in russia is in a weird placements we will have more on that in just a moment with one of the senior democrats on that committee. the senate intelligence investigation proceeds. it's going to include this bizarre information, belated inexplicable revelation of jared kushner that is linked to the russian intelligence services as an institution and headed up bay chairman who started his career at the fsb academy, at moscow spy school. he's the one that met with jared. the senate intelligence committee, that i shall first public hearing on this issue will be on thursday. so we will get one public hearing this week.
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but, by god, every news day it's like another. who knows what we will have reported by then. joining us is congressman jim hines of connecticut. congressman, he's nice to have you with us tonight. i imagine it frustrates you tomp somebody like me say the house sbeej committee seems to be blowing up. >> that is not. weir in a bizarre moment where not only is the investigation frozen with hearings being canceled but the committee is frozen. we ordinarily have a meeting at 5:00 p.m. on the day we all return which was today to go turnover previous week's activities and that was canceled.
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we had a thursday meeting to talk about something totally different, i think, than russia, and that was canceled. so we are in suspended animation right now. >> you received no information in terms of what chairman nunez was talking about last week about these incepts that he said he was so concerned about. you haven't had an intelligence committee, internal meeting. there hasn't been a rescheduling of what was originally going to be another public hearing tomorrow and the closed door hearing that was also scheduled for tomorrow, that has also been canceled? >> that's exactly right. i arrived back today, went to our offices and discovered not only have the democrats not received one single fact about the chairman's rather bizarre behavior, but% none of the republicans have been briefed on any of that. in the meantime, we're left with a situation where two things are going to happen here.
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one is because of the chairman's behavior, how is is the american pick up going to trust him when he stands with adam schiff and says here's our report. and second, an investigation relies on people from the intelligence community, maybe whistle blowers coming forward saying here's what i know. at this point in time with chairman nunez doing what he did, can you imagine if you are a whistle blower, do you want to be there at the committee where the possibility the chairman might jump into two cars and show up at the white house to brief the entity that is being investigated. >> congressman, i know that you have said that the democrats should not back out of this investigation because if you're not there, there won't be an
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investigation. izer harder you articulate that. in our estimation, is there anything he could do that could reinstate him as a trusted, and appropriate leader for this investigation or is the only way out of here that he recuse, gets replaced or the other investigation ends. >> by the way, we could wake-up tomorrow and find out something tanked senate vechlgts we're hanging on by our fingertips here hoping to make the progress we made in the opening hearing on monday. that's not progress with white house particularly appreciated, but the only way after all this bizarre behavior and this record of acting in the transistor of the very group being investigated that is trump and his people, the only way for us
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to proceed with any credibility, and i agree with adam schiff on this is for devin nunez to recuse himself as chairman for this purpose. something a little reminiscent of what the attorney general had to do with respect to russia contacts. >> one last question. we've been discussing this revelation in the "new york times" today tied to the senate investigation that jared kushner had this unexplained and preoperatively unclosed meeting with this guy who's the head of a russian government-controlled bank with very close ties to president putin and to the russian spy services. did you as a member of the house intelligence committee learn that today in the "new york times" or is that information that has been surfaced already in your investigation? >> this is pretty rapidly breaking. you have been covering it. we've seen this movie before. we saw it with paul manafort, roger stone, michael flynn. aurmg people around the
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president who had extensive kwakts russia. i've run five campaigns, granted for the presidential campaigns. i'd be shocked if anybody in my campaigns made contact with russia. we get back to the reason for this investigation in the first place which is the bizarre intensity of the contacts with russia, coupled with the president's completely solid refusal to level any sort of criticism at the country that all of his people have been happily meeting with for so long. >> i will say what the congressman was just saying there about how these things fit to account, the part of this right now that beggar's belief for me is that we are still now at this date texan march still learning about new contacts between trump officials, trump campaign transition and administration officials, new contacts we're still learning about now with russia.
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if you are in the trump administration and you are sitting on contacts you had with russian officials, and you haven't said so by now, time is running out when that starts to feel hike a scandal. it's remarkable tob to me that somebody could still be sitting on that this deep into this story. who knows what's going to come out next. we'll be right back. ♪ if you've got a life, you gotta swiffer
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earlier this month we tloortd russian opposition leader has posted an hour-long video outlining and showing a whole bunch of secret properties owned by the russian prime minister. he officially lives just on his government salary and has in other source of wealth or income. his anti-corruption group actually flew drones with cameras over the walls of his 45,000 square feet mountain chalet in sochi. he sent another drone over the fence of this gigantic country house complete with its own large man-made lake. there was also this 30,000 square foot mansion in the moscow suburbs. it also had its own lakers different shape. they also got this footage of his 17th century villa in at us canny complete with its own vineyard. and the not once, but two yachts
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that the prime minister owns and has reportedly named after his wife. he's a public servant. he's never declared legal sources of income other than his government salary as prime minister which is a nice salary. but it's not two yachts, a vineyard, and 45,000 foot see chalet nice. it's not that kind of nice. turns out there's more. there's also this estate which was previously discovered by the anti-corruption group. this has some notable features. see that? looks like a sort of water slide. this is the a multilayered cascading swimming pool. also a big greenhouse, three helipads, two large garages, also a modest little house built specifically for his ducks. a duck house. a little island in in the middle of one of his man-made lakes. that particular piece of corrupt opulence, the 35k9 that he had a
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home for his ducks, that has really annoyed people in russia. the reason i know that is because this weekend tens of thousands of russian citizens took part in anti-corruption protests all over the country, sparked in part by these revelations about their prime minister. and a lot of them were carrying rubber, did you inflatable ducks, ducks on sticks. it's all a nod to this allegation that putin's prime minister is living in such excess on a government salary that he could afford to build a house for his ducks at one of his many, many mansions. foreign reporters estimate that about 60,000 people took part in this weekend's demonstrations in dozens of cities across russia. these anti-corruptions protesters were the biggest protests to hit russia since 2011 and 2012. those anti-government protests were so threatening to russian
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president vladimir putin in 2012 that the country passed new laws saying you're basically not allowed to protest the government anymore unless the government specifically allows you to have a protest against them which doesn't happen all that often. the murder, the oppression, the exiling, the harassment of opposition figures in russia, everybody thought that had stomped the life out of the opposition, out of people willing to visibly oppose putin. but this week people did turn out, and it was not just in moscow. in 82 towns and cities across the whole of russia. tens of thousands of people protesting the putin government. russia without putin, russia will be free. at the large protest in moscow, russia's most visible opposition figure, he was arrested in moscow. that man is alexey in a very
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wellny, the man who's group put together the drones. he's tallahassee guy who was dyed green recently, campaigning in siberia when someone the law chemical all over him that literally dyed him bright green. this week he was arrested at these protests that he helped organize. it's interesting. a lot of people reported haegtd slap on the wrist. he got charged with a $350 fine and 15 days in prison. one of the things they do opposition figures in putin's russia and they bring all sorts of criminal charges against people in the opposition. he right now is serving a suspended sentence over an embezzlement charge related to timber futures. the trial is shotgun that is very wildly believed to be nonsense charges designed to harass him and give him a criminal conviction that would
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keep him from kwfrg to be on the ballot to run against putin next week year. he's on a suspended sentence for that already. yes, when he got arrested in moscow, they gave him a 15-day sentence for illegally protesting. that on top of this, that would give him a reason to lock him up for a much longer time. on who's faced thousands of drivers. she's a world-class swimmer who's stared down the best in her sport. but for both of them, the most challenging opponent was... pe blood clots in my lung. it was really scary. a dvt in my leg. i had to learn all i could to help protect myself. my doctor and i choose xarelto® xarelto®... to help keep me protected. xarelto® is a latest-generation blood thinner... ...that's proven to treat and reduce the risk of dvt
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tens of thousands of people took to the streets in moscow on sunday in an anti-corruption against the government. a number is actually closer to 700. among those detained, the opposition leader. >> joining us is michael mcfall.
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mr. ambassador, appreciate you being here. >> sure. >> we're focused in this country on the russian attack on our election last year, the investigations into that continuing revelations into unexplained contacts between the trump campaign and russian officials. that's an area of intense focus for us in this country. in that light as we are think about that, what do you think is important to think about these protests in the streets against putin at at home this weekend? >> i have to say i thought i'd never see the day when someone would go into the detail that you just did to talk about the sperbank. that was quite brilliant. >> how did i do on saying sperbank. i was worry about that? >> you did just great, seriously. that was just a fantastic piece. i even learned some things given that i used to deal with both of
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those banks when i was ambassador. to your point, i think what this underscores is the nature of the russian regime that we've kind of forgotten about. what they've done with americans, forget about the nature of this regime. what you saw on display on sunday was, a, as you rightly pointed out before the break, the protest movement that was bigger than anybody protected. i think even the protesters were surprised. but two, how they were just smashed, literally hundreds of people arrested, maybe up to a thousand. the opposition leader may be facing future sentences. >> in terms of the threat to putin here, obviously we have talk in the past about how part of the impetus for this influence campaign that they apparently ran on our election last year may have been putin's intense fear of being toppled in
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a revolution at home, his intense hatred for then secretary of hillary clinton when she criticized the fiernz of his election in 2011, the parliamentary elections there, and implicitly stereotyped protests that rose up against putin government then. is putin right to feel worried that his own people aren't really with him? that he is in danger from increased democrats and people being allowed to speak their mind? >> i teach about did he mocktization, and this would be very easy to negotte with these people to open up and your regime would be fine. but that's never been his tactics. it's always been to crack down. i think it shows an extreme paranoia, extreme insecurity by the way that they responded to these protests. it shows he's not comfortable. we've seen the official public opinion polls, but this shows
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there's something else going on inside russia. you raised an important point. this was a bit of banter with twitter and me and russians last night. he can't blame me for these protests. these are russians protesting against him without any opposed to it support whatsoever from the outside. >> professor at stanford now, appreciate you being here with us tonight, sir. thank you. we have much more tonight, do invious. y pause a spontaneous moment? cialis for daily use treats ed and the urinary symptoms of bph. 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, or adempas® for pulmonary hypertension, as this may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. do not drink alcohol in excess. to avoid long-term injury, get medical help right away for an erection lasting more than four hours. if you have a sudden decrease or loss of hearing or vision, or an allergic reaction, stop taking cialis
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tomorrow the administration is expected to roll back the clean power plan role. the most ambitious climate change initiative of the obama presidency. it was put in place to cut back pollution from coal-fired power plants. trump is due to kill that tomorrow. but while everything is chugging along on the white house's environmental policy side, there appears to be some unexpected and as yet unexplained drama around how the personnel side of things is working when it comes to environmental stuff. specifically, there appears to be some real drama in the epa. now today has a very dishy article. and i say that in the best possible way. it's about white house infighting, backbiting, suspicions. it claims, among other things senior administration officials have now taken to calling reporters to ask those reporters if other administration officials have been talking to
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those reporters and talking smack about them. not a healthy dynamic. but in the middle of all this dish on how bad things are at the white house right now, there is this very specific news from a trump official who has just quit the epa. quote, the back story to my resignation is extremely complex. i will be writing about it myself. it's a story not about me, but about a much more interesting set of events involving misuse of federal funds, failure to honor oaths of office, and a lack of loyalty to the president. misuse of federal funds? tell me more. mr. former epa appointee who has just quit. we do not know what that is about. we wait with baited breath for his autobiographical back story which he promises is coming soon. one last story tonight, which includes what really appears to be quite blatant corruption on another issue that
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is in the same wheel house. and that story is coming up. stay with us. does your makeup remover every kiss-proof,ff? cry-proof, stay-proof look? neutrogena® makeup remover does. it erases 99% of your most stubborn makeup with one towelette. need any more proof than that? neutrogena.
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during the republican convention last year, you might remember there was one change that the trump campaign actively sought to insert into the republican party platform. they decided they would gut the part of the platform relating to ukraine and russia. they made it much nicer to russia. at the time that seemed weird, that the trump campaign would pick that one thing to change when they clearly didn't care about anything else in the whole party platform.
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it was weird. now we also know that it was kind of telling, given all the russia stuff that has emerged since then. this is not about russia, but it's the same dynamic. right after the inauguration, the administration declared a freeze on all new government regulations. stopped them all, except one. the trump administration made one exception for one pending irs rule which they did allow to proceed and go into effect. it's the, quote, qualifying income from activities of publicly traded partnerships with respect to minerals or natural resources rule. super obscure tax rule. that's the one thing they allowed to go forward. why? who on earth would care than? >> we've got carl icahn. >> carl icahn endorsed me. so many people endorsed me. >> i have the greatest businessmen in the world, carl icahn, many endorsing me. >> i will call the executives or i will have carl icahn do it. >> i want carl icahn negotiating for me. >> he loves him some carl icahn. the president's billionaire
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investor friend carl icahn it turns out loves that obscure irs rule. he says because of that obscure irs rule, that's why he bought an 82% stake in an oil refinery business in 2012. he spent over $2 billion because he saw that rule coming. and that would make it all worth it. there has been only one problem with that investment there is an environmental rule, the renewable fuel standard that has really been eating into the profits of that refinery that he owns are 4/5 of. last year carl icahn fired off an 11-page letter to the obama administration complaining about that rule. he told them the rule is broken and needs to be fixed immediately. the obama administration was not persuaded. they did not pull the rule. that was in august. four months later after donald trump's election victory, carl icahn got himself appointed to the new administration as a special adviser to the president for regulatory reform. it's not an official white house position. carl icahn is not taking a salary. that means he is not bound by any disclosure agreements or any
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conflict of interest rules. he gets to keep all his asset, including his oil refining business. and in his new advisory role, carl icahn has been working triple time to get that regulation overturned that is keeping him from making money at his refinery. eliminating that rule should earn him nearly a quarter billion a year. the stock price of his company is already up 50% since that election, presumably with expectations of what carl icahn is going to be able to do for that company. this is the kind of thing we point and laugh at in other countries when we explain why it's frowned upon for americans to do business there, because they're so flagrantly corrupt. but we're not immune to this kind of thing. not now. today seven democrats sent a letter to carl icahn citing his concerns about his role within the administration, suggesting he may be breaking federal conflict of interest laws. we'll see where this goes. maybe he will decide that they're right, he shouldn't be in this position of making all this money from pushing a rule change that lines his pockets. that might happen.
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it might. we don't know. watch the space. that does it for us tonight. we will see you again tomorrow. this morning growing calls for house intel committee chairman devin nunes to step aside. democrats are demanding he he recuse himself from russian investigation after learning he had a secret meeting at the white house. after failing to pass a health care bill, the president is now reportedly eyeing tax reform and infrastructure but he may have to avoid a government shutdown first. good for business or bad for the environment? good morning, everyone. it's tuesday, march 28th.


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