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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  June 11, 2017 6:00am-7:01am PDT

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we know you care about reducing the sugar in your family's diet, and we're working to support your efforts. more beverage choices. smaller portions. less sugar. hi, everybody. good morning. i'm thomas roberts at msnbc headquarters in new york. 9:00 a.m. in the east, 6:00 a.m. in the west. back in the hot seat, attorney general jeff sessions says he wants to answer testimony by ex-fbi director james comey in the senate, but will it really happen. and better yet, will it happen in public view. just moments ago tweeting back and forth, overshadowing the real story. plus the president's sonic co-s what some of what the
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former fbi director said. plus we'll look at presummerday swelter. it's a record-setting heat wave across large parts of the country. we have a live report on that just ahead, but let's get straight to it. attorney general jeff sessions, two days away from testify fig. the new day will focus on new questions ha came up during james comey's must-see tv testimony from thursday. also, the president's oldest son appearing ing ting to pave the the conversation with former nsa director mike flynn. here's what donald trump jr. said last night. >> when i hear the flynn comment, you and i both know my father. when my father tells you to do something, there's no ambiguity. hey, i'm hoping. there's no hoping.
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he said, you've got to do your job. that's what he told comey. >> honest and trustworthy. 26% sate trump, 46% say comey. 28 'em say not sure. later trump returns to the white house after spending the weekend at his gulf retreat in new jersey. he and his daughter ivanka will travel to the white house on tuesday. we want to go now to the branch in new jersey where the president is staying this weekend, bedminster. kelly o'donnell is there. last week it was infrastructure. now this week the president and first daughter want to talk about job creation. can they get around that because tuesday is also the same day sessions is supposed to testify. >> reporter: well, there is so much that they're trying to to to appear to be moving forward and really have all the behind-the-scenes work go on with the agenda. but, of course, in the parallel
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track, there are all of these other issues that relate to the russian interference investigation and certainly the fallout from the james comey testimony. and, thomas, this morning, they're already making a public statement about james comey. that's always going to be interesting especially since his private lawyer said theyer going to try to challenge comey's truthfulness. o here's what the president tweeted early this morning. i believe that james comey leaks will be far more prevalent than anyone thought possible. he goes on to say, totally illegal with a question mark, which is interesting,nd then very cowardly. the word "cowardly" is in quotes on the president's tweets. that would appear to be comey's own testimony where he described himself when he was ask i why didn't you push back or challenge the president. he said we would see what we could do in response to what comey said was encouragement
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from the president to let go of the flynn investigation. and so in testimony he described his response as slightly cowardly. so the president's making a big allegation here saying that there are more leaks from james comey. he has testified on more than one occasion under oath saying that he was not responsible for any leaks of classified information. after he was fired, he did provide information in a written memo to a friend of his to distribute first to "the new york times" and then other reporters. that memo would be the property of the government as an fbi document, but it memorial lieds his doumits and interactions with the president and phone calls and their personal meeting. so that, the president is saying, is leaking. that is using the word a little differently. normally the word "leak" refers to classified information being. properly released. clearly comey engineered his own disclosure, but that's legal
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mess to get into. the russian investigation also implicates jeff sessions in ways in which he needs to answer questions and comey seemed to put pressure on sessions. here's what happened. sessions was set to appear at a standard budget hearing with the department of justice on tuesday. he's not going to do that. he's announced an abrupt change of plans. attorney general with a surprise move late saturday. jeff sessions offered to meet with the senate intelligence committee, but he will skip a tell advised grilling expected tuesday when lawmakers were likely to pepper him about the russia investigation at an unrelated budget hearing. in a letter the attorney general said, because of mr. comey's recent testimony, some lawmakers plan to focus their questions on issues related to the russia investigation. fallout from the testimony of fired fbi director james comey who said he had classified information on why sessions
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recused himself from the russia election meddling probe. >> we also were aware of facts i can't discuss in an open setting. >> sessions drew fire after he failed to disclose two meetings with a russian ambassador. >> did not have communications with the russians. >> but most of the spectacle around james comey was around the boss who fired him. wednesday along the ohio river just as president rolled out an infrastructure plan and teased about his own political potholes, news broke that comey would testify, that the president urged him to back off, fire trump adviser michael flynn. >> i took it as a very disturbing thing. >> thursday comey delivered a vivid account of nine conversations based on his own written notes and egged on the president who threatened to expose possible tapes. >> look. i've seen the tweet about tapes. lordy, i hope there are tapes. >> by thursday afternoon his
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personal lawyer denied comey's most damaging accusation. >> the president never informed or substance directed or suggested that mr. comey stop investigating anyone. >> friday in a rose garden news conference, the president punched back in what sounded like tweets. >> know collusion. he's a leaker. >> willing to testify himself. >> would you be willing to testify under oath? >> 100%. >> reporter: a couple of key points. the meeting is likely to be behind closed door, so there won't be that big tv event that we saw with james comey. comey had wanted to appear in public. sessions would probably prefer not to, and the typical thng per the senate intelligence committee is to do its work behind closed doors. now, that other hearing where he
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was expected to testify to, he's sending his deputy. that happens to be rod rosenstein. he's the person who wrote the memo and also the person who helped to appoint the special council. so the idea that the special investigation will not come up in questions is something i can certainly imagine lawmakers wanting to ask those questions. what sessions said is he feels the intelligence committee is the more appropriate forum for him to do that. he's under a lot of pressure to do it but to do it in a way that it would appear he wants to reduce responsible. thomas? >> coming up on tuesday. kelly o'donnell. great to see you. thank you. i want to bring in governor allen. as we understand it, a.g. sessions is going to be testifying tuesday before the
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intel committee. does it concern you that the u.s. attorney general was not open about these prior meetings with kislyak and that some people consider he already lied under oath? >> well, good morning, thomas. look. i know jeff sessions. i served with him in the senate. i trust his integrity. he'll be forthright in his answers to it. a lot of these are allegations that there was supposedly a third meeting with russians. and kelly had a good summary of everything that happened this last week, i suppose, with the comey testimony. that's one thing as far as attorney general that should be added to it. that is what we learned was was the former attorney general loretta lynch directed director comey to characterize an investigation as a mattering and he complied with her request. and that to me seems far worse than anything alleged or
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revealed about president trump. >> as a matter but not an investigation although everyone in the media went with it's an open fbii investigation and hillary clinton lost. and so the reality is we're dealing with it and an a.g. who cannot actually participate in investigation of russia because of his recusal on such matters. how damaging can it be? >> it remains to be seen. i don't know, thomas. i wish i do. we all can speculate. e don't think it will amount to much. i don't know. it will probably be as you said and kelly said, behind closed doors. i do think it's importance, they're the focus of the intelligence committee and no one likes a foreign government
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but they want it decided by the people. this is another thing that came out of comey's testimony. this isn't the first time russians tried to get involved with the u.s. elections. they were also involved in the french elections. it's important for our integrity that we don't have outside influences violating our laws. that seems to be the focus. i know they're on phishing expeditions for other things but they need to keep their eye on the ball. >> you made a good point. so it is a big concern and part of the bigger issue as we kind of go back and forth between these different versions of how the president says the interactions with james comey happened, how james comey said it happened. but we have this article, sir, "new york times," looking at the feud, and it's pretty active right now, but the threat from
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russia and the fact that we have this ongoing back and forth and the tweet red, in washington it's become partisan because mr. trump insists any meddling in election is an attack on his legitimacy pg and we just had the president tweeting this morning right now about this. i mean doesn't the president look weak on this issue if he is not willing to talk about the strength of american democracy and making sure it is not something that can be meddled with? >> i think the president has said that. i think what the president is really focused on more than anything else is keeping the promises he made to the american people. kelly was talk about he had his infrastructure event last week and making sure that regulations, he's doing a great job in reigning in a lot of these layers that em pead the
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jobs and companies. the president wants it at 15% so that we're better than average. so i think those are the key things that the american people care about. yes, they see democrats or republicans fussing with one another. the people i saw during the election were not influenced by russian matters. i think what people are focused on right now are jobs. that's what he was elected to do. >> the tweet storm goes after james comey saying i believe the james comey leaks will be far more prevalent than anyone thought possible. it's interesting that he was
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able to classify it to a friend. right now it's between the credibility. comey's credibility and president trump's credibility. who do you believe more? >> well, mr. seagull. let me say this. if you take h testimony, number one, the president was not under investigation. president trump was not under investigation. number two, president trump did not obstruct this investigation. if he did, then director comey would have said so and taken action on it. so in my view what director comey's testimony reviews is the
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president was not involved. they'd like someone in the fbi to say, no, i'm not longer under investigation. >> they don't want to wade in those waters as we witnessed through the 2016 election, they then had to get in those waters, wade back in to clean them up, wade back in once again. his point is we don't want to discuss it because we don't want to have to do that cleanup work. >> i understand that, but a natural human instinct is if you're accused of something and it's hanging over you leak a cloud and they're not investigating you, you'd hike to sark look, i don't want to be distracted by all this, i want to redo the tax code, see production active energy policy and so forth. that's just natural. not just the president but everyone. >> do you think there's a linchpin, any of the trump
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associates under investigation say something triggered the investigation and donald trump because of evidence found against one of these associates? then what? >> well, yeah. and then, in fact, as i understood the testimony of director comey, you'd say, go ahead. find them. we'd like him to get h done. now we have special counsel robert mueller involved in this. hopefully they'll expeditiously determine what the russians were doing, if there was any collusion by anyone else. that's all fine and then determine -- >> didn't we learn though by the fact that sally yates went to the white house to inform them of the compromise of the nsa
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director who ultimately left this administration because of lying to pence about what was discussed with kislyak? there was retaliation brought against her and she was let go as the acting attorney general. and as you look at the time line, it all came crashing down after going to the white house to enform them what happened with flynn and they waited some 18 days before he was eventually removed. >> well, obviously general flynn was removed. i don't think that the yates' dismissal had anything to do with flynn. it had more to do with the travel issue. the visa issue. point is general flynn has been dismissed because he wasn't trubltful with vice president pen pence, and if they want to investigate, they'll continue on with general flynn.
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perhaps the most salient is the president has not investigated flynn. >> that is up to bob mueller now. that's the whole reason we have bob mueller as the special pros kulter. >> bob mueller is then going to have to say, well, gob gosh, director comey didn't think it was obstruction. why would i consider that. i guess we could. >> we're going to hear from bob mueller until he has this all tidy with a big bow on it. george allen, former governor of virginia. thank you, george. >> thank you, thomas. why the focus isn't on finding the answers into the russian hack after this. this is a story about mail and packages.
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new reaction to attorney general jeff sessions upcoming testimony. on tuesday the former u.s. attorney who was fired by trump tweeted last night, i hope there be an open sessions. see what he did there. joining me now political reporter for usa "today." heidi, let's talk about this, what we're learning. is this a smart calculation for the a.g. at this point? >> he may not have a choice. here's what we learned in watergate. veebltually all side player do have to come before congress. for his sake it is better that it is behind closed doors because there are two areas, veins we didn't realize existed before. one is just the extent of his role of the comey firing.
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he is supposed to have recused himself and yet we now know he may have been come promietzed not just because he wasn't supposed to be involved in writing letter but we know that comey came to him for help and said, please, don't leave me in the room alone with trump and yet sessions and rosenstein were allegedly involved in crafting the letter. no one is talking about that anymore. and secondly we're now learning that there was classified information that would have forced him to recuse himself much earlier on. so members are going to want to know, what is the extent of that. as you recall before the previous hit, he said before congress he didn't have contacts. now we're finding one, two, three kaitlyn, as we know, ther are others. there's the fact that he had such tension going on in the
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administration that he offered to resign. is this an opportunity for him to maybe come clean or is it something else sh. >> well, it really depends as heidi mentioned whether this is a closed or open session. so that certainly is something that has been kind of the sidebar, people wondering about his relationship with donald trump, which is really interesting given the way in which donald trump has been going after his own justice department. jeff sessions who has been with him since the beginning. very beginning, very close with him. and then you also have these really interesting details of comey, of course, saying that sessions was kind of lingering around, kind of expressing some kind of skepticism over the two, the president and the fbi director meeting together. so we saw in this hearing that the questions and the details of the matters really matter here and help color what going on. if that's behind closed doors, that's one thing. if it's in public, that will be a big revelation.
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>> are we hearing any reports hikerdy, that tensions are just as bad between sessions and trump right now or because of the testimony coming up, this is an effort to help ease those two tensions? >> the president himself said he may be willing to testify. i just can't speculate about who's up and who's down in trump's inner circle because that seems to change on a regular basis. what seems to be clear is he's increasingly isolated given that so many people in his inner circle now have their own set of legal problems and that goes up to and including not only sessions but jared kushner who is also going to get hauled before congress. and that's why so much of the job is getting outsourced like rnc. including his personal lawyer.
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there were a lot of paem surprised the lawyer would come out after the testimony and folks within the white house themselves were essentially mum. that's just an indication of how many had their own set of legal concerns going into this. >> certainly it's a hot potato. one of the tweets we had from the president, i believe the james comey leaks will be far more prevalent than anyone thought possible. totally illegal. quote, cowardly. they've sent a letter over to the senate to try to bring some kind of sanction over to comey for doing this, but these were unclassified memos that he used to the third party to get to the press to rebut what the president had been saying. >> that's key here, right? he said he released the description of the memos after the president tweeted about having tapes. so it was in reaction to the president. i think what's really interesting you're seeing here
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is the republicannd and the white house. republicans outside of the white house trying to denigrate comey as a bad figure, a flawed figure. he's what they're trying to paint this picture of him in order to kind of exonerate the president. and you're seeing that message reflected -- i've been talking to republicans outside washington in swing states. they point to this as the democrats. they point to comey and the way in which democrats didn't like what he had to say a few moments ago. >> that's so funny because george allen said look how he talked about investigations. people can cherry pick right out of this testimony and comey brought that up saying you can't do that with me. you take all or nothing. >> exactly. you see the president saying,
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democrats are obstructionists. republicans don't have any legislative accomplishments and republicans on capitol hill are frustrated with that. >> is that the biggest thing, fact that he's really a halted field of progress chlg no legislation. >> it really is remarkable because we're well past the first 100 days and folks in white house were arguing that's an art official benchmark. we're well past that now. all of the major jemts, they don't seem to be going anywhere but that something has about 17% approval rating and right now the biggest challenge they're going to face is keeping this government open. it's unclear how these rifts within the republican party are going to lead to potentially a government shutdown as well over
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funding and right now all they have to point to is the confirmation of gorsuch. >> right. that's certainly a legacy for the legislation. here we come. great o see you both at 30 rock. coming up in a moment the latest reaction from the sunday talk shows and all of the headlines, plus a big change in the weather. it's a little hot out there. it's okay. it's june. and we'll talk about the areas you might not be expecting after this.
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hi, everybody. welcome back. i'm thomas roberts at msnbc headquarters in new york. this is what we're watching. new reaction from diane fine
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stain making her case moments ago for why jeff recessions should come before the judicial committee in addition to the intel committee. >> the judiciary staff are mostly lawyers and very good lawyers, and so there is an opportunity to look atta law with respect to obstruction of justice, to hold a hearing, and also to have those relevant people come before the judiciary committee. i've been very concerned by the fact that both director coats and director rogers refused to answer the questions when put to them by members of the intelligence committee. >> and she's speaking to the meeting that was happening on wednesday, the testimony of those four men. also new republican senator susan collins saying she would support or not a s&p issuing to get president trump to turn over recordings of any conversations with comey. >> this is an issue that the president should have cleared up in his press conference.
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he should give a strt yaight yer no to the question of whether or not the tapes exist and he should voluntarily turn them over not only to the intelligence committee but to the special counsel. >> if he doesn't and a subpoena would be necessary to find that out, you support that? >> i would be fine with issuing a subpoena, but that would most likely come from the special counsel's office. >> meanwhile we have a tweet from president trump this morning. i believe the james comey leaks will be more prevalent than anyone ever thought possible. totally illegal? very cowardly. the "atlanta journal-constitution" poll shows the democrat jon ossoff leading
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karen handel. joining me now, bryce. you challenged the republican for that seat. ultimately she was able to get past you but what do you think about aossoff's lead? >> thanks for having me, thomas. first off, jon ossoff is dealing with a very, very well qualified karen handel. she did a wonderful job with the county commission, brought it out of the red, got it budgeted. has a great name i.d. lives in the district. has family, worships in the district. unlike her challenger who doesn't live there. >> why isn't she running away with this right now? you make those great points. why does he have such a chance and a lead at that? >> you know how polls are.
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i feel very department. you have to understand republicans historically always turn out in better elections such as this type of election. we're mobilized and doing very well in terms of the first 100-plus days of president trump. 4.3 unemployment rates. yo luke at the dow look at the nasdaq. we have a lot of great momentum going for the country, which is going to resonate very well for a republican like karen handel. >> poles can be an indicator, but, yes, we have to wait until every last vote is counted. but with just over a week to go, sir, president trump traveled to atlanta and he raised about $750,000 for handel. but she said the race is not about the president and i am not an extension of the white house. why do you think she's pushing herself away? >> i don't think she's pushing them away.
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>> you would think someone running for congress would be in lockstep. why wouldn't she be an extension of it? >> i think she embraces the president and the voters of the six like any other candidate and leaders across the country. the great thing about candidate karen handel is when she does get elected from my understanding, she'll be a part of the committee which the president is implicating this infrastructure which atlanta definitely sees. you saw us in the news with the 85 bridge and some of the worst traffic corridors in the nation, so we're very, very happy and optimistic that she will be a champion and help that and work with the president on relieving some of this terrible traffic. >> i lived in mid-atlanta for seven years when i worked for another network.
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yes, the traffic can be tight, but if you stay on the city streets you can get around a little faster. that's my tip. but i'm sure you know that. >> but we do know the president's been hampered by the testimony. >> what do you make of all of this because we have certain people that are coming out. a former federal prosecutor i spoke to yesterday, cynthia oxny, gives very important details about what it means legally. take a listen. i want your reaction. >> he asked comey to let it go. he did so in doing it in a way he knew he was doing something wrong by having everybody go out and then he spent several weeks by trying to figure out if comey would go along with him, will you be loyal with me, and when he didn't get it, he threatened him and then he fired him. this is worst than watergate because it involved a foreign
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government injuring our voting process. >> would you agree with that? >> we're still trying to get our momentum, get going, and get the new administration in place. >> she was speaking specifically about foreign government trying to interfere in our election and any type of connective actions by associates within the trump campaign or trump administration. you don't think that that would be more serious than watergate? >> i think it's just smoke and mears respectfully. i'm not trying to be sar cass it, thomas. i want to make this clear. in reference to comey, here i am in my 50s. i grew up in atlanta. my uncles march. to have an fbi director go out and randomly go out and throw
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the word investigation around. it hurts the american citizen. i think it's very dangerous to have any director of any public safety, you know, director going out randomly using that word against any elected official without bringing strong evidence and i think we need to get a hold on that. it's very dangerous. you know, historically they use that to try to undermine dr. king. you know i'm talking about j. edgar hoover. this is serious. i hope the president did make a change so he can start off and get his new fbi director and we can get going. i will tell you this. president trump as i know him well, e's not going to cover for anyone. if you're wrong, you're wrong. he's not going to sacrifice his name. >> i really appreciate your time. i do have to run. i'd love to have you back on.
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we can text privately about atlanta traffic too. thanks. still ahead. a debate over trump. whether he testify under oath. i can't wait for her to have that college experience that i had. the classes, the friends, the independence. and since we planned for it, that student debt is the one experience, i'm glad she'll miss
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new lower taxes. and new university partnerships to grow the businesses of tomorrow today. learn more at all right. so happening right now, high temps sweeping much of the west and the northeast. it's expected to linger for the next couple of days. joining me now the weather channel's mike seidel. good to see you. fill me in on the heat wave. it's june, so shouldn't we like this? >> reporter: yeah. i think people in chicago like it. they didn't have much of a winter. remember, thomas, in january and february, they only had 0.6 of snow. that's oak beach. we're going to swing around and show you north avenue beach. much larger. there's a volleyball tournament
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going on. the record tomorrow, 97. what we don't have today like yesterday is oppressive humidity, but that's going to be increasing as we go through today, and then monday and tuesday, it's going to get steamy. so that's going to bring the heat index up close to the century mark on tuesday and wednesday. water temp, mid- 60s. meanwhile in your neck of the woods, we see that. that's the definition of the heat wave in the northeast as well as the humidity also creeping up. so heat index values. new york, philly, boston will likely touch or crack 100 in sought spots before it starts to cool down by midweek. >> my fellow marylander, when are you going to ocean city for vacation? >> reporter: next month i'll be there for two weeks.
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let's get crabs and corn on the cob. >> mike seidel, my buddy, you'll see him. separating fact from fantasy, and what about the russia investigation? what can happen next? what is really going on? that is the big story, right? mental sharpness in dogs 7 and older. (ray) the difference has been incredible. she is much more aware. she wants to learn things. (vo) purina pro plan bright mind. nutrition that performs.
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do you think that it reaches the level of obstruction of justice? >> i think that it is -- those dots are very much connected. let's let all of the facts fall wherever they may, but it seems clearly to me that obstruction of justice is an element of a crime that needs to be deeply looked at by the special prosecutor. >> so there we have new york congressman, a democrat and senior member of the house foreign affairs commission weighing on whether president trump could be charged. i want to bring in our panel.
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there we have it. guys, i just want to start off with the part of the doj and working here in manhattan, being on this week with george stef n nop laos. what is your reaction to that? >> well, i believe in the theory that if there is a lot of smoke, there must be some type of a fire. but i also believe in the right that the president is innocent until proven guilty. i also believe that we have to get to the bottom of this and i think the first step of that is really unpacking director comey's testimony which i thought was very riveting a couple of days ago. he seemed to be very calm, very truthful and earnest. i hope there are tapes because -- >> as my grandmother says,
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lordy, i hope there are tapes. so we have to wait and see. >> unfortunately, there aren't tapes. i'm sure if there ever were -- if there are tapes, there are no more tapes at this point. but i do want to point out this has been set up as it's comey's word versus trump's word, which is a battle that i think comey feels pretty good about. but i don't think that's really an accurate depiction because comey has his word. he also has contemporaneous memos he wrote and shared at the time with a number of other high level officials. so it is not just he said versus he said and if comey's testimony is correct, if he was asked for this oath of loyalty and then he was asked to let the flynn case go and then he was fired because he refused to let up on the russia investigation, it was putting too much pressure on, that's a pretty good case. >> and the other hook is in that
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moment where comey and trump are alone in the oval office, comey describes who was there, how often left that room, how -- >> how often was told to leave the room. >> the a.g. lingered a little bit and left. jared kushner made niceties and then left. all of them under oath would have to refute that story. reince priebus sticking his head in by the door by the grandfather clock, maybe he would have to refute whether or not comey was inside there. the group outside the door that would have seen comey leave. but president trump did tweet about this saying it was a total and complete vindication for him. that was the other day. this morning more recently we have him saying i believe james comey's leaks will be more prevalent than anyone thought possible. totally illegal, very cowardly. right now we don't have any legal precedent that has been examined to be broken because these were unclassified memos that comey basically planted
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through a friend of his to refute what the president had said via tweet. do you think that the president who said he's 100% willing to, do you think he's go under oath about this? >> well, i think the president is worried. he said at that press conference a couple of days ago that he would be willing to testify. that was a direct question from jonathan karl. without any hesitation he said 100%. by the way, there is precedent for that. gerald ford testifies under oath a couple of months after he pardons richard nixon. bill clinton did the same during his personal situation. i hope the president does this. look, the reality is, as i've said before and i get animated about this because we love this country. the russians tried to undermine the very tenace of our democracy. that is extremely serious. and, so, if the president wants to testify about that, then so be it. all the better. >> still take him at his word?
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>> i do not take him at his word. but one of the things that is incredibly disturbing here is the fact that no matter what involvement this president may or may not had or whether he obstructed justice, the lack of interest in protecting our country from these future hacks is really horrifying. >> that is what's ahead of us. thanks so much. we need to get you to new york so we could have this holy trinity together in one place. >> indeed, indeed. i'm out here in colorado. i had two dead concerts i just came from. >> oh, my gosh. you must smell like -- i'm not going to say. that's going to do it for me. thanks for watching. a.m. joy is next. garfunkel (instrumental) [ snoring ] [ deep sleep snoring ]
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