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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  June 13, 2017 3:00am-6:01am PDT

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leadership. i can't thank you enough. >> president trump, thank you for the honor to serve the country, it's a great privilege. >> president trump thank you for the opportunity to help fix the trade deficit and other things. >> i want to thank you forgetting this country moving again and also working again. >> thank you, mr. president. it was a great honor traveling with you around the country for the last year and an even greater honor to be serving in your cabinet. >> on behalf of the senior staff around you, mr. president, we thank you for the opportunity and the blessing you've given us to serve your agenda and the american people. we're continuing to work very hard every day to accomplish those goals. >> whoa, that was some sad stuff. >> your hair looks great today, joe. >> thank you so much. >> so proud to be here. >> thank you again, joe and mika, for having us here. i can't begin to express the
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honor and pride i have to be with you. thank you again. >> i'm just so privileged, so privileged to be here. >> are you blessed? >> i'm blessed. and you are fantastic. there's never been anybody in this job better than you are. >> thank you very much. >> am i allowed to say that was kind of sick, or is that over the skis? >> mika and i at the beginning of the week decided -- >> that's a great blazer by the way. >> mika and i right now are in a bit of a quandary. >> no, i'm good. >> no, we are. because we decided this weekend that we thought we had been a little too rough and a little too snarky. >> not too rough, but a little personal. >> it got too personal and we needed to report more news and offer less harsh biting criticism. and with that in mind and with
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that as a backdrop. >> that is sick. >> that is the most sick, shameful, pathetic, un-american, autocratic display. >> i'll channel my father. sick in the head. >> if i were ever in a meeting and people did that to me, i would say shut up or i'm going to fire you. >> you all can leave. actually, you all are dismissed. >> you guys don't know this, but i was in congress one time. i had a guy who worked for me for six years, and everybody went ahead of him but this one guy. he stayed and he went like this, like this, like this. he came in finally after six years. what's up? why is everybody zoomed ahead of me? i said because whenever i call you in here, all i get is yeses. all you do is tell me how great i am. have you not understood these other people come in and they knock my head off. >> bring value to the table.
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>> and tell me where i'm screwing up and where i'm messing up and how it can get better. all you do is suck up. then, of course, he did a really lousy attempt at being tough. i mean, steve, you can't run an organization like that. >> you can't run an organization that way. >> you're sure to fail, sure to be at 36% in the polls. you'll go bankrupt if you don't have people around you hammering you every day, keeping you honest. >> not only that, but to program this whole thing, they all came in with these scripts one after another and read them, i've never seen anything like that in my life. >> other than general mattis. >> other than general mattis. >> the former ceo of exxonmobil, former ceo of one of the most important funds on wall street and wilbur ross. >> harold, you and i can always tell who is going to succeed on the hill and who is going to fail on the hill depending on
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who they had around them. there was always yes, boss, yes, boss, yes, boss types. we'd always mock and ridicule those guys. we had one guy who would always have people around them and a staff member and i would always laugh. i'll tell you who it is afterwards. walking to the house floor and a guy nudges me, he said do you know what they call him back in his home district. i'd say no. they say when they see him shopping, they say there goes a congressman that keeps his word. you go vote. i'll have to go over to the trash can and throw up. >> we have the newly minted washington bureau chief with us, julie pace. you look fabulous today. >> julie, you are the most brilliant and gleaming and
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effervescent and intellectually chargeed person we have ever met before. >> guys, i have to say i have to say i love your show to be here at 6:00 a.m. >> we wasted four minutes doing that. here is the thing -- >> we're honored and we thank jesus christ -- >> don't take it too far. we said it was sick. it's very sick. the president started out -- >> who needs that, mika? that's the question. who needs that? >> here is how the president started talking about himself. it's not just his little people he has talking about himself, he likes to talk about himself, too. here is president trump. >> i will say that never has there been a president, with few exceptions, in the case of fdr, he had a major depression to handle, who has passed more legislation, who has done more things than what we've done. i think we've been about as active as you can possibly be at a just about record setting
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pace. >> fact check, julie pace. >> fact check, not true. >> one of "the washington post's" five lies a day? >> it's not true. there has been a lot of action. there are a lot of days at the white house that feel pretty frantic and pretty busy. a lot of executive orders that the president has signed. when you dig into the substance of them, a lot are for show, a lot create commissions and studies to look at issues. on the big-ticket items, the big things the president has promised, health care being at the top of the list, that hasn't had a lot of traction. tax reform is kind of dead in the water on the hill right now. putting yourself in the same category as fdr is a pretty bold move on the president's part. >> look at the legislation fdr passed in the first 100 days. even newt gingrich, newt who has short-term memory loss these days when it comes to mueller. look what was passed the first 100 days in that congress, what
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has donald trump's administration -- what makes major piece of legislation has donald trump had passed and signed. >> there hasn't been a major piece of legislation. >> maybe a half a piece? >> are we talking 12, nine? he said more than anybody else. he said legislation. just give me -- >> is he fixing it up with executive orders because he's confused? >> what's the round number, how many major pieces of legislation have been passed, over or under five? >> under. >> over or under three? >> under. >> over or under one? >> i would say under. >> so then he didn't tell the tru truth. >> he's passed no legislation that have moved the country for
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ward. they've passed a bunch of bills rolling back legislation put in place by obama. >> technically is that legislation? >> technically it's legislation. >> well then, there you go. >> major legislation, it is zero. >> general mattis, though, stood alone doing what you were supposed to do if you serve this country and you get a paycheck from the people of the united states of america. he talked about serving others. he talked about being in service of others and not about himself. let's roll that tape. >> mr. president it's an honor to represent the men and women of the department of defense, and we're grateful for the sacrifices our people are making in order to strength then our military so our diplomats always negotiate from a position of
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strength. >> there you go. you need more of that. people talking about the sacrifices and the selflessness of people in the military, people who do their jobs each and every day and do not require adulation around a table. my god that was embarrassing. >> that was sick. sick is the word. it's also deeply un-american to turn a cabinet meeting to the president of the united states in the white house into a cheerleading routine where everybody is supposed to go around the table and praise him. how wonderful that general mattis focused on the troops that he is serving. what donald trump doesn't understand is -- so many things, but the first thing is he is serving the american people. he is working for the people, not only that voted for him, but the people that didn't vote for him. what his obsession should be is not getting praise from those
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people, but doing everything he can to help the working class people that voted for him, who also voted for barack obama, and the rest of americans who need this economy to grow at more than 2%, who, if he believes he can help them by tax reform, he needs to fight hard, and that entire thing should have been orchestrated -- how do we get real tax reform passed that will help working class americans and small business owners and people that hire working class americans and get them back to work, get money from offshore, get it down here, bring wages up. if he even wanted to talk about immigration reform, to make sure working class americans weren't competing with too many other low-wage workers. that's fine, but don't make it a cheerleading session about yourself. that's not why americans voted
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for this man. if you're a cabinet member, come on. come on. you owe us more than that. we pay your salary, too. stand up for yourself. have dignity. if he doesn't want you around because you stand up for yourself and have dignity, then leave. general mattis is the example. in other news attorney general jeff sessions will likely face tough questions from the senate today about his contacts with russian officials and what role he played in the firing of james comey. a spokeswoman said, quote, he believes it's more important for the american people to hear the truth directly from him. members of the intelligence committee are interested in a pair of undeclared meetings between sessions and russian ambassador sergey kislyak. now there are reports of a third meeting at the mayflower hotel at a campaign event in april.
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senator al franken discusses how it may have been discovered. >> for seven weeks after he gave his false testimony, he didn't correct it. he didn't correct it until "the washington post" actually said he met with kislyak a couple times. we asked specifically about this meeting at the mayflower and other meetings, too, in a private letter to the director and that we've now made public. he'll probably explain whether this third meeting was an actual meeting. they've intercepted some contacts between kislyak and his people. kislyak may have been exaggerating the meeting because he wanted to look important. i met with jeff sessions. oh, you're an important ambassador. >> a doj spokesperson said sessions didn't have any private conversations with russian officials at the mayflower. >> also claimed the doj claimed an fbi employee advised sessions he didn't have to disclose meetings with foreign
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ambassadors that took plates during his time in the senate which could muddle things up a little bit. >> julie pace, i'm -- i've been doing this -- i've been around washington officials for 25 years. you're so great, you could have just been around for three minutes and you should have been spectacular. you don't need 25 years. i usually know when i'm being played and when i'm being spun. let me tell you, when i talk to white house officials off the record where they're really talking to me, they just think our best option is to go straight to the senate, talk to the senate, we have nothing to hide. i'm talking about a lot of the staff members who keep saying there is no collusion. and when word gets out, the meeting is going to look stupid. it sounds like jeff sessions feels the same way. he wants to go and talk to them and let them hear for themself. are you picking up the same vibe from your sources? >> yes, i am.
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i think this is important for sessions. sessions is caught right now because he has these meetings that he initially didn't disclose, and there's been a lot of speculation about this possible third meeting. we do know sessions and kislyak and other now white house officials were at president trump's big campaign speech on foreign policy at the mayflower hotel last spring. we do know they were in the same place. there's been a lot of speculation about whether they had a side conversation, whether there was a private meeting, whether kislyak was possibly embellishing about his conversations with sessions. the attorney general really can't get beyond that speculation until he stands in front of his former senate colleagues under oath and tells them what happened there. he can't get past that. if nothing happened, this is an important moment for him to say nothing happened. >> in an area where nothing is happening also for the most part, is legislation. what can you tell me about health care?
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a lot of people curious about how the senate is trying to pass health care, they're keeping it quiet. the absolute wrong way to manage one-fifth of the economy. but mitch mcconnell is no fool. he knows the second he puts a plan out, they're going to get chopped up into a thousand pieces. what's happening with health care? and is there really a sense that they're going to be able to give the president a bill he can sign or is the president just covering himself like the house members are covering themselves who don't believe whatever they pass will ever become law. >> mitch mcconnell is a brilliant senate tactician. he's decided to do this behind closed doors. he believes he can round up the votes if he does this through this process. the problem with this process, though, it gives you no opportunity to build public support. if you look at the bill that came out of the house, i think the numbers in some of these polls are like 10%, 12% public support. so this idea that you're going to do something in private, put
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it out to the country and expect people to rally around it on something that's this huge and also this personal, i think is a bit misguided. republicans feel like they can't end this year without having given health care a real go, simply because it's been so crucial to what they have promised. if the senate can get a bill out, there's still a long way to go. they have to reconcile it with the house bill. these two pieces are going to be pretty different if the senate can even get something done. >> steve has charts on this later this hour. >> he does. we're going to get to those. quickly before we go to break, though, you can understand republicans have been promising for six years, we're going to pass health care reform. so it's almost like each chamber needs to pass something so they can go home and say we have done this. it's just the other side that's screwing things up. it seems to me at this point they've got to be thinking that
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because they're not going to pass a piece of legislation that has 12% approval rating. >> the other point which julie mentioned at the end is that the senate is not going to pass the bill the house passed. the senate is going to pass their own bill. there have been reports that the senate might want to leave some of the obamacare taxes in place in order to pay for some of the benefits that they don't want to cut back. that's going to be an en nagt ma to the house. whether they can be reconciled is highly problematic. it may come back to what you said, joe, they want to pass a bill so they can go home. >> more on that and we'll talk to harold ford to get his input on that. they promised this for six, seven years, promised it in 2010. they've racked up the largest legislative run, legislative seats over the past six years in large part by promising to repeal obamacare. they have to be able to go home and say we voted, this is the
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vote, this is the bill i passed to repeal obamacare. but those stupid house members or those stupid senate members. i suspect that's what we're looking at more than anything. >> that was so insightful. >> jen, would you like to say why you're happy to be here. >> i feel blessed. >> we're all blessed. >> her and reince priebus. >> still ahead on "morning joe" -- >> you could almost hear mike barnicle saying that. >> almost. >> the ninth circuit does extreme vetting of its own ruling against the president's revised travel ban. constitutional law professor jonathan turley breaks down the decision which, not surprisingly, used the president's own tweets against him. also the top house democrat on intelligence, congressman adam schiff joins us, plus senator richard blumenthal who calls
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sessions a key in the probe. also the two attorneys general who are suing president trump for allegedly violating a key part of the constitution. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. there's nothing more important to me than my vacation. so when i need to book a hotel room, i want someone that makes it easy to find what i want. booking.com gets it. and with their price match, i know i'm getting the best price every time. now i can start relaxing even before the vacation begins. your vacation is very important. that's why booking.com makes finding the right hotel for the right price easy. visit booking.com now to find out why we're booking.yeah! only tylenol® rapid release gels have laser drilled holes. they release medicine fast, for fast pain relief.
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and these guys. him. ah. oh hello- that lady. these houses! yes, yes and yes. and don't forget about them. uh huh. sure. still yes! you can get it too. welcome to the party. introducing gig-speed internet from xfinity. finally, gig for your neighborhood too. mike, you asked a question when we went to break, and it's a question mika and i talked about. i think we're a very resilient country and we'll be fine after this is all over. but you asked the question -- >> will the country ever be the same given what we're going through right now? >> what do you think? >> i hope so. i don't know so. we're creating seemingly permanent divisions where people of different races and economic classes go to their separate corners and fight it out ideologically. we watch only what we want to watch on tv, we read only what
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we want to read online. it's a country seemingly separating itself from ordinary daily life. we've survived so much in this country and prospered as a result. i've always felt we endured through the year, 1968, a horrendous year, and we can endure almost everything. when you look at the daily out put in the news media and you have public people urging wars against the media. we're not the enemy. we're not the enemy. we're part of the system. we explain hopefully truth to people. but people no longer know what truth is. they have their own truth. >> i just look at our place in the world and i don't know how we withstand an unhinged presidency, as some would call it and still maintain our strategic alliances, maintain the exchange of intelligence with certain allies which has already been impacted. you look at what the lead are of
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germany has said about going it alone basically. this is impact our place in the world in a way i think is extremely dangerous. if we don't take this seriously and just depend on resiliency, depend on the balance of power to hopefully see us through, i think we're in danger. i really do. >> as our friend ed forest told me, the world keeps moving. if we're not going to be allied with germany or if we're going to back off of germany, then you see china already moving in. and we already see with italy, if we're not going to be there shoulder to shoulder with italy, you see russia already moving in. >> and they're backing off from us which is worse. >> that's what i'm saying. again, i think i'm still hopeful but -- >> i think our institutions will survive. i think this is one of those ugly strange moments, more of a reflection of where the country
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is more than where politics is. i think donald trump has forced the media to going back to doing what they do best, finding the truth and reporting it. there has to be hope and belief that the country and everyday americans will react to it. we hope the -- it takes individuals in politics to rise above the nonsense and to challenge the luna see that may be challenging our institutions. i'm irked by this notion that the president my fire robert mueller. something i think as much a disgrace -- >> doing an about-face on mueller. >> i really wish newt gingrich wouldn't bring shame to himself
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and his name, given the historical place he has had in our party, that is shameful and knows it's shameful. no ambassadorship is worth it. that's all i'll say about newt. i will say, you see the federal court steps up, and i know conservative jurists as well as moderates and liberals have been enraged when they've seen the federal judiciary's independence challenged by somebody from a coequal branch of government who believes that perhaps he's king. so the courts have stood up. they did it again yesterday, showing that no man is above the law. the media has fought back. he's used the stalinist term, the media has fought back. i do think we'll be fine. i will tell you, steve, the one thing i've heard from a lot of trump supporters, we actually do agree we've been carrying the load of the world for too long.
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they need to start pitching in more. i understand that. i don't understand, though, the president's hostile reaction to our democratic allies, but i know this, we've got 240 years on our side. if we've got a ceo right now that's running the company a bit into the ground, i think we'll still have that strong brand afterwards, even though it may be a little damaged. >> i'm like you, joe. i tend to be an optimist. i've been around enough that i was an adult in the watergate years and we went through two years of unbelievable hell. >> that and vietnam at the same time. >> i was at age during vietnam. i know what the country went through during those years i think we have 24 years hf history and we'll get through this. while i agree with you other countries need to step up and do more, we had a unique leadership
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roll over the world. and we are piece by piece receiveding that leadership role more importantly to china and to russia. we don't want to be creating this vacuum to have china step into it. that's not in our long-term strategic interest. >> there have been a lot of people, mika, who believe for a long time the united states has been retreating and creating a vacuum. when we were fighting for eight years under george w. bush and spending all the blood and treasure we were spending on those wars, the chinese were quietly going in, investing across africa and investing across the world. eight years during barack obama, even your father was talking about his concerns about the fact we didn't have a strategic vision for the world. it seemed to be america in retreat on the international stage leading from behind, and now we have this. it's one administration after another administration after another administration. you do collect scar tissue over
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16, 17 years that causes serious problems. the situation is far worse now than it was over the last two presidents. but he didn't come in in a great situation himself. >> five months that we've never, ever, ever seen in our life times. that's for sure. we'll take a quick break. we have jonathan turley after the break. listen up, heart disease.) you too, unnecessary er visits. and hey, unmanaged depression, don't get too comfortable. we're talking to you, cost inefficiencies and data without insights. and fragmented care- stop getting in the way of patient recovery and pay attention. every single one of you is on our list. for those who won't rest until the world is healthier,
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the ninth circuit court of appeals unanimously upheld a decision by a judge in hawaii by blocking the government from enforcing the executive travel ban argued. the judges ordered that the president exceeded the scope of the authority delegated to him by congress. they also disputed the president's claim that there weren't adequate safeguards in place to keep terrorists out of the u.s. the judge cited president trump's tweets from earlier this week in which he declared we need a travel ban for certain dangerous countries, along with sean spicer saying trump's statements are statements by the president. >> let's bring in law professor from washington university jonathan turley. no surprise this came from the
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ninth circuit. it has been a sir price from other circuits. when are they going to stop knocking around in the circuits and go straight to the supreme court? >> i think we're there. this is an interesting opinion. it was well written. i thought it was better written than the fourth circuit. i disagree with it. i still think they're trying a bit too hard to rule against the president. i think he has good arguments to make in the supreme court. joe, i think we're there. i think the fourth circuit and ninth circuit both give very broad platform for the court to look at this. i do think the administration has arguments. the problem is the president keeps becoming a witness himself. >> i was going to ask you that, jonathan. before his latest round of tweets, i said there are a few powers the constitution grants the president in a more unambiguous way than immigration and the protection of borders and the very things that this
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case fits neatly in in all four corners of this case, but after those tweets, the latest round of tweets, suddenly i thought he gave the supreme court a back door to get out of this. where do you think we stand given the president -- that's right, we need a travel ban, all caps, for dangerous countries for some politically correct term that won't help us protect our people. how does that impact what should have been a slam dunk case for donald trump and one i predicted would be a 6-3 at least. >> it must be bizarre for the lawyers. it's like a presidential version of death by cop. every time you seem to make advances, the president seems to stand up and say shoot me, shoot me. out can't make much progress by this. many of us predicted the ninth circuit would pick up that tweet. it did. it's not clear what the president is trying to
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accomplish here. it's hard to believe he wants to prevail if he keeps making these types of statements. having said that, i think the white house has a point that the court is being a bit fast and loose on previous cases, the president's inherent authority. i thought the ninth circuit case was really interesting. while reading it, i kept feeling, wow, you're really trying awfully hard. they're making this distinction about how you've shown that the countries are dangerous, not the individuals that live in them. frankly, by the end of the opinion, i was not that convinced. >> professor turley, harold ford, good morning. i happen to agree with you several weeks ago. but the opponents of this ban from the white house have stated all along that the president's true intentions, the true intentions of this ban were, a, b and c without describing, and the president early on, when his team said it is not, he indicated it is. all his tweets have suggested it is.
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i'm of a different opinion now. i think the opponents of this have a stronger argument than they did several weeks ago for the singular reason that president trump continues to tweet. if he stopped tweeting, perhaps he would be different. how do you still make the same argument today when it seems president trump has actually enumerated all the opponents of his ban's argument before the court. >> you make a good point. there's so much water the court is going to carry for you if you're working against your own case. having said that, both the fourth circuit and ninth circuit really marginal lines of cases of the supreme court that i think will bother many of the justices. i think the extent, for example, that the fourth circuit relies on campaign statements will be of great concern, not just for conservatives on the court by liberals. you're absolutely right. you have these continual perry mason moments jumping up and saying stuff which is not helpful. what's ironic they currently
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have a team that is pretty darn good. i was very critical of the first round of defense by the justice department. this team is actually pretty good. this is not helping obviously. >> all right. the attorneys generals of maryland and washington, d.c., jonathan, have formally announced a lawsuit against president alleging he violated anti corruption clauses in the constitution. the officials unveiled the suit yesterday saying the president has failed to completely separate himself from his vast business empire which they claim undermines public trump. they came he's in violation of the foreign emoluments cause which prohibits the president from accepting payment from foreign governments without the consent of congress. it cites the luxury hotel in washington, d.c., numerous golf courses, resorts, hundreds of thousands of dollars played by saudi arabia and qatar. the attorneys general say they plan to ask have the president's
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financial and tax records as part of the suit. can i just ask you, while it may seem so obvious and inappropriate to some, this is more complicated -- >> first of all, this is a fantasy come true for constitutional law scholars, to talk about the emoluments clause. i've dreamt of this my whole life. it may ultimately come down to benjamin franklin's snuff box. one of the reasons we had this clause is benjamin franklin and other ambassadors were given jeweled snuff boxes by the king of france. much of the early discussion about emoluments dealt with gifts. this is going to be an advantage in this sense to the trump team because they're going to say, look, george washington sold -- they sold various products to england from his farm, other countries, things like cornmeal. those were not viewed as an emolument. rockefeller, when he was vice president, had oil interests
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around the world. so there is a legitimate question here. there's also a legitimate issue -- no person has ever had the type of portfolio or holdings of donald trump. having said that, trump has made this again more difficult for himself. he decided not to completely divest. he took the half-way measure in that sense. if i was to bet, i would have to bet with the administration for two reasons. first, they have to establish standing which is really hard, the right to be in court. these two attorneys general are going to have a heavy fight on that one. second, courts are going to view this as largely a political issue and i think they're going to try to find an off-ramp to get out of this. they haven't ruled on this question in any substantive way for the history of our republic. >> jonathan, with regard to attorney general sessions' appearance later today before the senate, are you familiar and could you explain the element of retraction as it's posed in
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several state statutes and apparently it's referenced in the federal code, whereas a witness goes in and says, by the way, i forgot to tell you when i was last year, i also had dinner at the bolshoi ballet? when you refresh your testimony to avoid a perjury indictment, are you familiar with that? >> first of all, witnesses do correct their testimony regularly in the sense that it's happened, it's accepted. sessions did that with his first testimony. if he had a third meeting with the russians, that's obviously quite serious because of the very recent denials of that. it's always better to go in and correct that testimony. i don't know of any previous case where a witness came and made such a correction in a circumstance like this and was ultimately prosecuted. apparently sessions may, in fact, say this meeting never did occur. he's going to face some very uncomfortable questions.
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there are some legitimate questions where he can claim executive privilege, where you're talking about conversations with the president in the oval office. but i hope he'll men mize that. i think it's in his advantage and the administration's advantage to try to be as transparent as possible. >> all right. thank you so much. greatly appreciate it jonathan, as always. we are all around this table so happy that all of your fantasies are coming true. the emoluments clause. what fantasies. thank god, harold, you and i never became constitutional law scholars. >> can you imagine what our fantasies would be if we had become constitutional law professors. >> i would keep it in the gutter with the commerce clause maybe. >> let the lord say, amen. >> both attorneys general will join us to discuss their lawsuit at our 7:00 a.m. hour. coming up, "washington post's" gene robinson will join us.
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and representative adam schiff will join us. when we heard the white house was thinking of getting rid of independent counsel bob mueller, he said congress would establish the independent counsel and appoint bob mueller. that's the least of the president's problems, now sitting at 36%. so much of that collapse started, of course, with the firing of james comey. he doesn't want to double down and make things even worse. that would put him into the 20s. "morning joe" back right after this.
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with us now, editor from "washington post" and nbc political analyst gene robinson. as we mentioned, senate republicans hope to vote on a health care bill by july fourth. they're working on that bill behind closed doors. they want to avoid the backlash that surrounded the house version. we asked steve rattner to come
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with charts and discuss provisions of the health care debate. steve, what i'm mostly interested in is how is this bill going to impact the people that put donald trump over the top in places like wisconsin and pennsylvania and michigan and states like that? how does it help those that voted for barack obama eight years ago and then voted for donald trump, the so-called fabled white working class voter. >> that's what's so interesting about not just health care but everything donald trump is trying to do, this disproport n disproportionate effect. let's start with medicaid. donald trump as you may recall wants to cut medicaid both through his health care bill but general legislation as well by 50% over the next ten years. who gets medicaid? if you look at children which are the major recipients of medicaid, 45% of children in rural areas get medicaid versus only 38% in urban areas.
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>> for people that voted for donald trump that live in rural areas, when you see numbers like that -- i certainly learned this through serving and talking to hospital administrators, that doesn't just help the poor in r. that hurts everybody. because the hospitals, the other health care facilities, the hospice centers, the critical care centers all take a disproportionate hit and they all have to close portions of their services off to people. >> exactly. in rural america, as we know, donald trump got 62% of the vote versus 35% in urban areas. here is a case where a policy will hurt his supporters more than everybody else. take a look at the next one, which is disability. he wants to reform the disability program, which does need reforeman ireforming. six or so counties in america where the highest percentage of americans are on disability.
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dickenson, verge ibina, buchanan, virginia. look at the national average of the number of people on disability and look who the people in those counties voted for in the last election. >> my mind is like a super computer and i went to the university of alabama. >> yes. yes, it is. let's all agree. >> above 75%. so here we have, harold ford, in the top county harmed by these cuts that have just been proposed. not the law yet but just proposed. these areas will be hurt disproportionately, voted for donald trump by more than 75%. >> health systems across the country impacted by the slowing of these dollar flows to these hospital systems. that affects every aspect of the delivery care system there. the medicaid component of
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obamacare was provided by cuts from the outset f you take the medicaid dollars, restore them to the medicare piece. steve, you talked about this before. equally, if not more so impact on seniors in these counties as well and across states where president trump did so well. mick mulvaney said no one thinks it's part of social security. no one thinks that the office of management and budget exists in the white house. maybe we should get rid of his office as well. these are inherent parts of big pieces of policy. your chart does nothing but underscore the real impact it will have. >> medicaid pay force nursing home care for the elderly. on the tax side of what the president wants to do, he wants to repeal 900 billion of taxes. benefits go almost entirely to the top 1%, little bit to the top 20%.
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for everybody down here at the bottom or toward the bottom you get practically zero. tax cuts for the rich. >> gene robinson, it would be hard to draft tax bill that hurt donald trump's working close voters that put him over the top, that hillary clinton never seemed to grab ahold of. more than this bill did. i'm flummoxed by it. not only because of these charts and economic realities but also because it goes against everything that donald trump promised on the campaign trail that he was going to do for working class americans. you were going to get better health care. lower premiums. more coverage. >> yet they haven't all abandoned donald trump. his support has eroded slightly. but not that significantly, to tell you the truth. he is at 36%. that's not great.
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but, geez, that's this 36%. and, you know, you have to conclude from all the reporting and from conversations that i've had, these are people who want to believe in donald trump, who want to believe he's going to be transformational, who want to believe he's going to do something to help them in their communities. he's doing exactly the opposite. he's going to hurt them in their communities. >> gene, for these americans more than any other americans, they need a transformational president. >> absolutely. >> things have been going in the wrong direction for a long time. >> absolutely. and he connected with them. and he -- and they have put their faith in him. and, you know, they're not going to quickly withdraw it. i think we've seen eventually, they probably will. especially if any of this actually becomes law. if any of this actually happens. you're going to see communities
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that are suffering now just in agony. >> right. >> then, of course, it will rebound against donald trump. >> julie, this piece of legislation, the house version, the senate version, whatever comes out of the senate, is obviously one of the more critical pieces of legislation that affects so much of this country. almost everyone in this country. how difficult is it, though, to extract information, reportage on what is going on with this bill in the senate right now behind closed doors? >> i would hope that the public would be pretty outraged by how difficult it is to get information. we're talking about one-fifth of the economy and something that is so personal to people. this isn't something that washington is working on that ends up being pretty distant or doesn't affect your lives. this affects your lives on a daily basis. i was around during the writing of the obamacare legislation and remember how a lot of that was done behind closed doors and how outraged republicans were about
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that process. now we're seeing that happening at an even faster clip. both privately and happening quickly. to gene's point, this is something to remember in this whole debate when we talk about trump and his supporters. yes, there were people who voted for him that did it out of anger and because they saw him as the lesser of two evils but there are a lot of people who voted for him because they truly believed in the policies about promises he was making. the big question that trump has to grapple with, is he going to be held to the same standards as other politicians who, if they break their promises, they get voted out of office? >> so far, no. we'll bring in "new york times" reporter michael schmidt, tracing unconfirmed reports of a third secret meeting between jeff sessions and russia's ambassador. we're facing 20 billion security events every day.
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greatest privilege of my life is to get to serve as vice president to a president keeping his word to the people and assembling a team that is bringing real change. >> this pivotal time under your leadership. i can't thank you enough for the privilege you've given me and the leadership you've shown. >> mr. president, thank you for the great privilege you've given
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me. >> thank you for the opportunity to fix the trade deficit and other things. >> i want to thank you for getting this country moving again and also working again. >> thank you, mr. president. what a great honor traveling with you around the country for the last year and an even greater honor to be here, serving in your cabinet. >> on behalf of the entire senior staff around you, mr. president, we thank you for the opportunity and the blessing you've given us to serve your agenda and the american people. and we're continuing to work very hard every day to accomplish those goals. >> good morning, joe. it's a blessing to be here. thank you. >> how big of a blessing? >> god, so big. it's just so big. >> imagine one of those mornings at church you go to the 8:00, 10:00, 11:00 service. one of those blessings. >> so much of a blessing as you're singing the last verse of "just as i am" when they say "we've been there 10,000 years" and you get the chills, that
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much of a blessing? >> maybe a little more. >> you're on the cabinet still. >> greatest privilege of my life. >> what did we just see? and have we ever seen anything like that in the history of the united states that you can recall? >> no, i can't recall it, which is why i have to believe in coming days we're going to find out they were doing a north korea parody skit. >> schumer's office did a parody. >> it's really gross. >> explain why that is the spookiest thing you've ever seen. >> that we have a president who would be impressed and moved and bolstered. >> and needs that. >> they looked like they were speaking with some sort of prod under them. those were not enthusiastic, heartfelt testimonials. for many of them it's not the greatest privilege of their lives to work for donald trump. he contradicts them. he undercuts them. he leaks to the media that he's
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unhappy with them. >> elaine chao worked for george w. bush. >> i'm going to place a wager, she liked working for him better. >> gene robinson, chime in. >> what in the world? >> this really is -- there are clips of vladimir putin having these type of meetings. >> thank you. >> people go around and praising him. >> i think putin would be embarrassed by the level of abasement that we saw in that cabinet meeting. it was just -- it is stunning. s it abberrational. we don't -- >> their reputations. >> the sycophancy that you see there and the fact that mika mentioned that the president needs this, that they have to do
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this because it feeds him and it keeps him going. to what end i'm not sure. >> what does that suggest? >> well, it suggests this is the weirdest administration we have ever had in this country. and it's not getting better. in some ways, it seems to be getting worse. and more sort of out of the american norm. >> narcissistic behavior. >> we knew the guy was a narcissist. i don't think -- i don't know that anybody ever thought that everybody around him would debase themselves and would sell out their reputations to be in an administration. >> there are some good people in that room. >> what i don't understand about donald trump, and we've certainly known him for a long time and understand all his failings. one thing i said during the campaign, even after we started going after him hard in december 2015, this is a guy that in the
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arenas that he's in usually figures out how to prevail. he did. that's why when everybody said he's going to lose, we said -- >> careful. >> -- just wait. this guy figures out how to win. >> oh, my god. >> he's at 36% and doubling down, digging in, in a way that will get him in the 20s. he continues these sort of disgraceful episodes. >> needy episodes. >> needy episodes and he continues keeping people around him like steve bannon that play to his worst instincts. he's at 36%. i think i speak for all of us here and probably none of us here voted for him. we want our president to succeed. we want jobs to come back to america. we want things to pass. i, at least, would love to have tax reform pass. steve would love to have tax reform pass. nothing wrong with regulatory
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reform. we would all love to see big infrastructure bill pass. get this country working again. so, he's at 36%, going down, doing bizarre things like this that distract from the business. why can't he self correct? he did in the campaign and he won. >> there are a number of traits of his that don't speak well, i think, to being a long-term, big leader we want. it's fascinating. listen to tom price. there's no health care bill. the president has zeroed out a number of efforts in the budget to provide services and benefits to people. you tloivlisten to rex tillerso. the president has injected uncertainty in our relationships in middle east, syria, north korea, china and recently withdrawing from the paris climate change. whatever you think about climate change it certainly sounds like we're advocating this leadership role. there's no infrastructure bill.
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>> good point. >> he has signed a few executive orders. gorsuch nomination through. it would be different if he had something to brag about. >> he did brag about a body of work. there is no body of work to speak for. >> i'm in agreement. >> no legislation, and yet that -- whatever show you want to call it, was started out by the president. >> right. >> talking about himself and making up untruths about, or misunderstandings about his own accomplishments. >> he did make an allowance. he said maybe not fdr he has surpassed but everyone else. >> so modest of him. >> this is how -- no i'm going to show how the president start this had off. >> okay. >> because it's incredible. take a look. >> i will say that never has there been a president, with few exceptions. in the case of fdr. he had a major depression to handle. who has passed more legislation, who has done more things than we've done. i think we've been about as
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active as you can possibly be and at a just about record-setting pace. >> so, none of that is true. any how, attorney general jeff sessions -- no, there's no legislation -- will likely face tough questions from the senate today about what role he played in the firing of james comey. a spokeswoman said, quote, he believes it's important for the committee to hear directly from him. now there are reports of a third meeting at washington's mayflower hotel. senator al franken on how it may have been discovered. >> for seven weeks after he gave this false testimony, he didn't correct it. he didn't correct it until the washington post actually said that he met with kislyak a couple of times. we asked specifically about this meeting at the mayflower and
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other meetings, too, in a private meeting with the director. he will probably explain whether this third meeting was an actual meeting. they've intercepted contacts between kislyak and his people. kislyak may have been exaggerating the meeting because he wanted to look important. i met with jeff sessions. oh, well, you're an important ambassador. >> in june, a doj spokesperson said sessions did not have any private or side conversations with any russian officials at the mayflower hotel and that doj claimed that an fbi employee advised sessions he did not have to disclose meetings with foreign ambassadors that took place during his time as -- >> there is obviously conflict here. we heard people say he has met a third time, that he has met multiple times. there are others who say there were no other meetings.
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what are you learning? >> this is the microcosm problem that mueller has. you have a russian witness in the ambassador. you have some intelligence that shows a meeting. and you don't have a lot of other evidence that shows that it happened but there is some suspicion about it. what mueller has to do is get to the bottom of all this. he just can't go over to russia or the russian ambassador and ask for kislyak's help in that. >> what about the specific meeting? they're talking about meeting at the mayflower. why is there ambiguity here? >> the day in april of 2016 when trump was giving this foreign policy speech. the problem is that the intelligence community recently got stuff that showed that there may have been more to it, that there may have been more there. as a reporter you could see folks bragging i had this great
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meeting with sessions, and that's where the conflict is. democrats saw this, were briefed on this in classified settings. i was a little surprised to see the senator there, acknowledge that it was actually intercepts that they had learned about it on. and they say, hey, what the heck, why didn't sessions disclose this when he came back and clarified his testimony? >> jonathan turley, talking about cleaning up the record, something bill clinton's lawyers did after his first testimony back about monica lewinsky, just trying to clear things up. it would be tough for an attorney general to come back, clean things up, asked about something, deny it, then have to come back again and clean it up a second time. >> a lot of this may boil down to semantics. you refer to the clinton era. it depends on what the definition of "is" is. this may depend on the definition of "meeting" is.
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unless you had eyes on these two men the whole time to characterize what happened between them. >> how strange is it that you have a senator from alabama, who has never really had any reason to meet with russians before, never met with russians before, suddenly gets involved in donald trump's campaign and we're wondering whether he has had two or three meetings with the russian ambassador. >> what's the jared connection with all that? >> and suspicion with russia surrounding this president. >> it's very strange. >> strange. >> is there collusion here? hays what the larger question is about. all the policy terms that trump and his campaign and then his administration took with a warmer attitude toward russia, is that what was being discussed and set up? this was out of the ordinary. there obviously was some purpose to it. what is the main purpose some collus oichlt. n to sway the election? >> and at least a major distraction for this presidency,
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five months in. >> during the election you had the president telling the russians, look into these sort of e-mails. >> the president saying on our show that -- >> stronger, better leader than obama. >> on live television without batting an eyelash. joining us from washington, the ranking member of the house select committee on intelligence, democratic congressman adam schiff of california. thank you for being on the show this morning. >> what do you expect to hear from the attorney general today? >> certainly there will be a lot of questions about whether he had meetings that he didn't disclose. what would be significant here is he gives the initial testimony before the senate. it isn't accurate. he later comes back when it becomes public that it's not accurate and clarifies the record. if there were an additional meeting or meetings that he didn't even disclose then when he was on notice that this is of great interest to the senate, that would be even more
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problematic. that's a very fruitful line of inquiry for the senate. all the circumstances that led to the firing of jim comey. any facts that would corroborate jim comey's testimony. whether, for example, sessions knew that the memo that rod rosenstein wrote would be used for pretext for firing on a completely different basis. there's a lot to ask him. and the only question really is whether he's going to be willing to answer these questions. >> gene rob u.inson is in washington and has a question for you. >> congressman, what's your understanding of where the investigation is in the house? we've had these ongoing senate hearings now. but what's happening in the house? are we going to see some visible manifestations of that investigation? >> yes. well, we have sent out letters to any number of witnesses, to bring them in for testimony. most of that will be in the form of interviews or depositions. that will be behind closed
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doors. we are also scheduling further open hearings. one with jay johnson that we're working on pinning down the date. he was one of the three agency heads that signed that initial statement of atribution. as you know, we wrote to the white house at the end of last week, demanding the tapes, if they exist, as well as seeking the memoranda that would corroborate the director's testimony. i think we also ought to bring in these fbi personnel around comey, some of whom were in the room when comey was on the phone with the president but others who could get the contemporaneous recollections of those meetings right after they took place. >> harold ford? >> congressman, sle quickly, if president trump were to go
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forward with relieving or firing bob mueller, what sense do you have of how many republicans might express anger and might be willing to act in a very aggressive way, either by approving a special counsel act or even going further? >> i think i would hope that would be the last straw for many republicans that have stayed their hand and not been willing to speak out, if he were to take this step with all its echoes of watergate and i would hope congress would take up a law, single purpose, not that gave indefinite life to independent counsel but authorize this investigation so that bob mueller could be reappointed. i don't think congress would sit still and allow the president to pick his own investigator. mueller is widely respected and a lot of members have spoken out that he was the perfect choice. he was the perfect choice then and is still the perfect choice.
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i don't think congress will allow this to go forward. i have to think this is the president venting. then again, i remember thinking whether i thought there was any chance that the president would fire comey and that didn't seem possible either. >> mike schmidt? >> congressman, what role is devin nunes, the member of your committee, playing in the investigation? he said he was going to step aside and then there was some notion that he was still signing subpoenas and playing a role in the investigation. how involved is he, and does that concern you? >> his only involvement in the russian investigation, but it does concern me, is that he is still insisting on signing off on the subpoenas in the russian investigation. that authority, by our rules, can be delegated to mr. conaway with consultation with myself. that should have been done by now. it hasn't been done. that does concern me. >> why hasn't it been done? >> he simply refuses at this point. >> even related to the russian investigation? >> yes. >> but he recused himself.
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>> exactly. >> isn't that one of the most important aspects of running an investigation, the power to subpoena witnesses? >> it absolutely is. and it's indefensible. the only thing i can say is thus far we have only sought to issue four subpoenas. he did sign off on them but it's still inexcusable that he's ultimately a check on what the russian investigation can do. the other part of it is there is this unmasking oversight going on. that is something that he is conducting. and i think some of the timing of what he has done is helping to prop up the administration's message that not helpful to the russian investigation. >> swregene robinson, final thoughts? >> that was an incredible revelation. i was not aware that chairman nunes was holding on to power over subpoenas.
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that ought to be shouted to the heavens and something ought to be done about it. that's not recusal. >> you just shouted it to the heavens. harold? >> can you imagine a more powerful responsibility on a committee that issues subpoenas and making a decision on subpoenas? >> this is like jeff sessions being a part of the conversation about firing james comey. either you're recused or you're not recused. you're not half pregnant. if you're recused, you get out of the room. >> on all matters. >> everyone knows, we were all warned. you know, if the democrats take control of congress, we won't have the power of subpoena anymore. or, you know, if the democrats take control -- that's the power and nunes is still holding it. he's not recused. republicans need to pass that along. >> the trump administration has
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us a lot of things we've never seen before. and one of them is apparently a definition of recused. >> what level will they stop cooperating? i'm recused, still signing the subpoenas but the democrats are continuing to cooperate? at what level would they stop? >> he has signed all four of the ones requested so far. >> still. no one needs to go to devin nunes to ask for a hall pass. he has recused himself. the republicans need to go to him and say you're undermining the investigation. get the hell out of here. >> that falls to speaker ryan. >> speaker ryan, i'm sure he will do the right thing. >> i hope so. >> he needs to tell devin nunes, thank you for your service. now pass along the power -- >> speaker ryan is not new at this. he probably will do the right
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thing. >> i know he will. >> he will. senator dick blumenthal will be our guest. we invite any republicans on that committee to call in. we'll take your phone calls and gladly talk to you. >> as long as you want. >> you can reverse the charges. we'll pay for the charges. also you have to tell me why i am a great host and why this is the greatest honor in your life to be talking to me. no, you don't have to do that. call in. what else, mika? >> two of the nations top lawyers accuse the president of violating the constitution. washington, d.c. and maryland break down their lawsuit against the commander in chief. >> you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. brian, i just need to know if the customer app will be live monday. can we at least analyze customer traffic? can we push the offer online?
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i have been called a surrogate at a time or two in that campaign and i did not have communications with the russians. >> back in january, jeff session told the senate judiciary committee something that wasn't true. now the senate intel committee it intends to find out just how many meetings he did have. democratic senator richard blumenthal of connecticut, very good to have you on the show sir. >> thank you. >> i know you're going to be in the audience today. i'm going to turn it over to michael schmidt, who is on to something with adam schiff in the last interview. take it from here. >> we were talking to congressman schiff about the issues with devin nunes on the house intelligence committee. cooperation on this investigation would the democrats say this is a breaking point and we're not going to continue working with you on this? >> for one thing the refusal to issue subpoenas. my view is that subpoenas should
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be issued right away for all the tapes that may exist, even to establish that they don't exist, subpoenas should be issued right away and to preserve their existence. i want a commitment from jeff sessions that he will not oppose those subpoenas on behalf of the president through the justice department. i also want a commitment from jeff sessions that he will resign if the president of the united states fires bob mueller. i think it's a matter of fundamental conscience. republicans on the committee should cooperate in defending bob mueller, this investigation under the special prosecutor should be bipartisan. i called for it some months ago. it is key to uncovering the truth. >> do you think if mueller were to be fired the republicans would go along with appointing an independent counsel? do you think that would create the political will to do that? >> i would predict, although
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nothing is certain, that there will be a firestorm, much like there was in the wake of the saturday night massacre in the watergate era and that we will see legislation. and i know in the senate -- i can't speak for the house -- there would be sufficient support, i believe, for some kind of independent counsel, probably through a three-judge court, maybe limited to this investigation, but some kind of special counsel. and i think it would be bob mueller. nobody is better qualified in the whole country in terms of his involvement as a united states attorney, as head of the fbi, person of unquestionable integrity. and this attack on him to undermine his credibility, the smear campaign, unconcionable. i want jeff sessions to denounce it. >> harold ford. >> emerging as a key figure in
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this investigation. building on michael's questions, explain to all of us, and the public, if he were to have one, two, three meetings with the russian ambassador, what's the implication or seriousness of that in your mind or in the mind of some of your colleagues on the committee? >> he is the highest ranking official in the trump administration to be involved in these meetings, whether it's two or three. he made false statements before the judiciary committee about them. he has yet to explain fully those false statements, which is why he needs to be subpoenaed to come back to the judiciary committee. and, of course, his participation in the comey firing as part of this charade, seemingly a cover-up where rod rosenstein and he both endorsed this theory that comey was being dismissed because of the ineffectiveness of his leadership. and then the president and they, presumably knowing all along about the russian investigation. >> steve rattner? >> senator, we talked about the
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question, whether sessions had two or three meetings with the russians. i assume you'll talk to him today about what he said to comey when he said he didn't want to be alone with the president anymore. what else is on your list of things that you want to try to get to the bottom of, recognizing that he may very well exercise executive privilege on some of the conversations between he and the president at least? >> first as to executive privilege, i think there's no basis for it. it cannot be invoked in furtherance of criminal action. and here they investigate violations of law and executive privilege even if they existed, in my view, has been waived by the president. i would want to know what the president said to him about firing comey. what gave him the reason that this letter had any basis, in
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fact and was, in fact, any part of an attempted cover-up. the reason that's key, as you well know and talked about extensively on the show, the russian interference in this election and trump campaign collusion with it has led to this unfolding obstruction of justice that is occurring right before our eyes in real time. and the effort to suppress it, to smear mueller, to call it a witch hunt, is part of an orchestrated effort, in my view, to undermine justice and the credibility of this investigation and has to stop. >> senator richard blumenthal thank you for being on the show this morning. michael schmidt, thank you as well. the secret service says they don't have any white house recordings. that doesn't mean that other people might not have their own. ongoing choice to play coy on whether there's really secret tapes of the president's conversations with james comey.
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does president trump have audio recordings of his conversations and meetings with fbi director james comey? >> the president made it clear
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he would make an announcement shormt. >> do you have any timeline on when that will be? >> when he's ready to make it. >> if the president has evidence that the fbi director lied under oath, what is he waiting for? >> i think he made it clear on friday that will he will get back on this. >> what is he waiting for? what's the delay? >> he laid out his position very clearly, concisely on friday. >> so, sean spicer, everybody's whacked sean spicer and they should have. he has done a horrible job in many respects. >> and sidestepping. >> when you don't have the information, you say i don't have the information. they keep pressing. and he stayed calm. when are we going to find out? when the president wants you to find out. but he said last week in the rose garden. well, you'll know when -- we don't ask much more of our press secretaries. be respectful to the press, which people do say off camera he's very respectful to them.
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but it's almost like he's now -- it's tough. he's working for the hardest guy in the world to work for. but that actually is more comforting to see that come from the podium. you'll know when i know. >> he doesn't know the answer and is kicking it back to the president. to the point of sean spicer having done a horrible job, is it possible in that job, in this administration, to do a good job? i don't think so. i think you would need to be is some kind of superhero. >> well, you would have needed to start off with your integrity intact. and actually not do that first press conference where he humiliated himself and the country about crowd size. that was the end right there. >> which brings us back to -- >> also, steve rattner, actually, again, you know, we don't -- >> made a joke of the presidency. >> i do know from everybody i
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talked to that actually trump would be angry with him afterwards for not going even further. so, obviously, he was in a no-win situation. >> he was in a terrible position. to your point i watched that briefing yesterday and thought he kind of found his lane. maybe because trump left him alone. maybe because people realized he had to handle this differently. i think he did handle it the way a normal press secretary would handle it. >> yesterday's performance. look, the job of press secretary to the president of the united states depends on your relationship with the president of the united states and whether information you get in terms of your access to the president and his closest advisers. clearly, poor sean has had not much of a relationship, i would think, with the president. i don't know. and, thus, he has very little information. >> and, again, as long as he does that, stays calm. i don't know. you know, and then they can say, well, why don't you know? then the pressure is not on sean spicer but on the president of the united states, to give his press secretary more
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information. i want to show you poll numbers that, obviously, this is the lowest donald trump has ever been at in gallup. 36% approval rating. the disapproval, i guess, is as high as it's ever been. record high, 59%. harold, my question -- you know, i always joke about president bannon's approval ratings. it is, in fact -- put it back up there, please. that is president bannon's view of how you run the white house. take no prisoners. us against the world. attack everybody. go to war with the intel community. go to war with your allies. go to war with the press. and if we can just keep this up while harold talks, this is what steve baninfonon's strategy lea you to. us against the world, the world always wins. >> trump made a number of assertions and promises to voters across the country that obviously resonated with working
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class and middle class voters in key states that democrats have done well in. this poll reinforces and underscores how he is losing support with so many of those constituency. whether it's steve bannon and others, this has to trouble trump, the campaigner. trump the campaigner rose above being a republican, brought in democrats. if you're going to govern successfully, you can't govern with those numbers. people make the point that ronald reagan and tip o'neill got along very well when reagan was president. the reason is because reagan's approval numbers were so high. you cannot be an effective president if you're hovering in the high 30s and low 40s. i don't care how enthusiastic your base is. you're not going to win support in the congress. add to it you're under investigation for alleged collusion with russia during a campaign. you cannot pass health reform, tax reform, regulatory reform with those numbers. >> steve bannon, as long as he's
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preaching tear down everything, the number will stay right there. it's not going to get higher. us against the world. if you make everybody your enemy, everybody makes you your enemy. it's that simple. >> if you're at 60%, you can do that. >> i heard somebody in the administration early on, you're so tough to us. politics is a friend-making business. you build bridges. people will say horrible things about me. i would go down and sit down with them. what do you need? what's your problem? let's talk through it. they're at war with everybody. i had a rule in my office, you guys want to be at war with somebody, we can be at war with one person at a time. we do one front wars. >> pick your battles. >> and then they would come and say now we need to fight so-and-so. okay. is going into that second battle and having two people shooting at us instead of one worth giving up the first battle? that's your choice. make it and let me know what you think. >> they're going to lose congress with these numbers.
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>> right. >> i'm not sure they care. >> he's not going to keep control of the house if these numbers remain where they are. >> i just don't get -- genuinely, i feel like republicans in congress need to understand this. i don't get the feeling he cares at all. >> he does care about his poll numbers. coming up next, legal issues take center stage in a case against donald trump and rule r.
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the future isn't silver suits phianit's right now.s, think about it. we can push buttons and make cars appear out of thin air. find love anywhere. he's cute. and buy things from, well, everywhere. how? because our phones have evolved. so isn't it time our networks did too? introducing america's largest, most reliable 4g lte combined with the most wifi hotspots. it's a new kind of network. xfinity mobile. the attorneys general of maryland and washington, d.c. are suing the president of the united states, claiming he has failed to completely separate himself from his vast business empire. at the center of it is the little-known piece of law known as the emolluuments clause.
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>> we had jn than turley on earlier this morning. he had a question about standing. do you have standing? >> we believe we have standing on two bases, first sovereign standing, the responsibility of attorney generals to protect the interest of their residents. if the president of the united states is violating the fundament alan tie corruption law known as the emolunts clause ta gives us standing to protect our people. you make a good point, joe. there is a no doubt that they have a role in the emoluments clause. he would have the following checks and balances, the president checking himself, then the staff checking the president then the republican-controlled
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congress checking the president. we know that's not happening. it's the press, the democratic attorney generals and others who are invoking the constitution and taking these things to court. >> all right. harold? >> general frosh, harold ford. at the end of his answer he said this is a politically motivated lawsuit by two attorneys general who the majority of their residents didn't support donald trump and they personally don't support him. number one, how do you react to that? is there anything you want to build on general racine's point, please do. >> first of all, we're working with the ethics adviser to the obama administration and george w. bush administration. the emoluments clause is the key anti-corruption clause in the constitution. it protects every american from the president putting his interests above those of all of
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the rest of us. i think every american needs to know that when the president sends our sons and daughters into harm's way he's not doing it because of his business interests. we node to know that when he makes a deal with another nation he's not doing it because he has a golf course there. this is not a partisan issue. this is an issue about presidential honesty and the avoidance of corruption. >> brian, does it concern you at all when people hear about this suit or read about this suit that there's a general knowledge that there is a big league investigation of the president going on in both the senate and the house and as a major leaguer bob mueller conducting his own investigation and that people would think, man, this is just now all politics? they're just jumping on this poor guy because the country is divided and a lot of trump supporters will refuse to believe almost anything said or
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filed against him. does that concern you at all? >> what concerns me is you have a president who is doing so many things that violate his oath of oath of office. specifically, the emoluments clause is one of the most important protections we have in the constitution. mueller may be looking at things that relate to that. the russia investigation may unveil some payments that he's received, treatment he's received from russia that affect his conduct, but our lawsuit is about things that we know have happened. we know he's receiving payments from china. we know he's receiving payments from saudi arabia, from qatar, from afghanistan, and a number of other countries. and we know he's marketing his properties addition. >> so, let me interrupt you. wouldn't you have to prove he's getting more than market value or maybe, perhaps, those payments have increased
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exponentially since he became president of the united states? >> well, he's proved that himself. i mean, he got elected president. he doubled the fees at mar-a-lago, that's his florida resort, from $100,000 to $200,000. he doubled the price of the rooms at the trump hotel in washington. and he he brags about what a great negotiator he is, that china is one of his biggest tenants. he himself has testimony -- >> but he bragged about china being one of his biggest tenants during the campaign. i guess what i'm saying, if you go before the court, doesn't january 20th have to be the cutoff date and you show there's been an increase exponentially from foreign powers in money that's gone to the trump organization? >> joe, inc. you're exactly right. january 20th is the key date. that's the date on which the president should have taken steps to put in a credible
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divestment plan. the fact he hasn't, the fact he's so willing enthusiastically accept money from foreign country who is clearly have an interest in influencing american policy is why we're filing this lawsuit. >> steve rattner. >> he increased those fees at mar-a-lago shortly before he was elected, not after. the president can be sued civilly. see you're going to subpoena his tax records and other interesting documents. what do you see the timeline for this case? when do you think this will be in court in a way where with we can find out what was going on with the president, his guests, his taxes and businesses? >> this will be an extend the civil litigation. president has 60 days to answer to our complaint. we expect the president and the department to file a motion to dismiss. i think you're looking at a period of months. during that time frame, we will be seeking discovery. >> attorneys general karl racine
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and brian frosh, thank you for being on the show. >> while we're in this legal sphere, what do you think the impact is if donald trump makes the extraordinarily bad decision to follow newt gingrich's advice and fire bob muler? >> i'm not at all convinced congressman schiff or the senator are right in there would be two-thirds vote to get independent counsel statue but inc. we see republican defections. the great mystery of the trump administration is why have republicans held so firm with him? >> you look at newt gingrich, let's put those back up, on may 17th newt gingrich said what a wonderful guy bob mueller was. on june 12th he said republicans are delusional if they think the special counsel is going to be fair. that's deeply offensive.
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check fec reports. if you check donald trump's fec reports, the last time chuck schumer ran for senate in 2010, i believe, he was cutting chuck schumer checks in 2010. he was giving democrats checks all the way through 2010. so, if newt gingrich, if that's newt's yard stick, then the president of the united states failed. obviously, an ambassadorship has been damaged in front of the gingrich family, and much has changed. again, i just wish he would be quiet and let her go do her job. >> right. the attacks on mueller, this smear campaign as the senator said against mueller, it happens just as he staffs up in a very, very serious way. as it becomes clear he's going back this in an extraordinarily professional and professional way, the smear campaign rises. >> i cannot -- so, donald trump was shocked about the james comey firing and the impact that
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had. he should not have been shocked that would look like a spring shower, a light spring shower compared to the category 5 political horror -- >> don't be surprised if it happens. >> -- that would sweep over washington and donald trump and keep them in a bunker for the rest of their presidency. >> you saw that cabinet meeting yesterday. don't be surprised if it happens. frank bruni, thank you. we'll take you inside that will cringe-worthy cabinet meeting where -- >> can i just ask everybody -- >> this is why he makes really bad decisions. >> has mika been at her absolute best today? >> absolutely incredible. >> steve, can i -- >> i'm a rookie. >> what a wonderful question. >> what was your favorite part? what was your favorite part of what mika did the first two hours? >> just showing up. >> she is better just showing up than anybody else. what do you think? >> i like all two hours. its hard to single out a moment. i'm honored to be here with you
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serve a prt. >> what an incredible honor to lead the department of health and human services at this pivotal time under your leadership. i can't thank you enough for the privilege you've given me. >> president, thank you for the honor to serve the country. it's a great privilege you've given me. >> thank you for the opportunity to help fix the trade deficit and other things. >> i want to thank you for getting this country moving again. and also working again. >> thank you, mr. president, a great honor traveling with you around the country for the last year. an even greater honor to be here serving in your cabinet. >> on behalf of the entire senior staff around you, mr. president, we thank you for the opportunity and the blessing you've given us to serve your agenda and the american people. we're continuing to work very hard every day to accomplish those goals. >> whoa.
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that was addition that was some sad stuff. >> your hair looks great today. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. >> i'm so proud to be here with you. >> harold? >> thank you again, joe, and mika, for having us here. i can't even begin to express the honor and the pride i feel just being near you and all the great work you do. thank you again. >> i am just so privileged, so, so privileged to be here. >> blessed? are you blessed? >> i am blessed. and you are fantastic. there's never been anybody in this job better than you are. >> thank you. >> am i allowed to say that was kind of sick or is that over -- >> the thing is -- >> that was sick. >> mika and i at the beginning of the week -- >> and that's a great blazer, by the way. >> thank you. mika and i right now are in a bit of a quandary. >> no, no, i'm good. >> no, we are. because we decided this weekend thought we thought we'd been a little too rough and a little
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too snarky addition. >> not rough but personal. >> it got too personal and we needed to report more news and offer less harsh, biting criticism. and with that in mind, that as a back drop -- >> that's is just sick. >> that is the most sick, pathetic, autocratic display. i mean, i will tell you -- >> sick in the head. >> if i were ever in a meeting and people did that to me, i would say shut up. i'll fire you. >> and you can all can leave. are you all dismissed. >> i actually had a guy -- you don't know this because i was in congress one time. i had a guy who worked for me for six years. everybody went ahead of him but this one guy. he just stayed. he went like this, like this. and he came in finally after six years and he said, what's up?
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why has everyone zoomed ahead of me? i said, every time i call you in here all i get is yeses. all you do is tell me how great i am. have you not understood these other people come in and they knock my head off? >> bring value to the table. >> they tell me where i'm screwing up, where i'm messing up and i can get better? all you do is suck up. of course, he did a really lousy attempt at being tough. that's just -- mean, steve, you've -- you can't run an organization like that. >> you can't run an organization that way. >> you're sure to fail. you're sure to be at 36% in the polls. you'll go bankrupt if you don't have people around you hammering every day, keeping you honest. >> not only that, but to program this whole thing where they all came in with these scripts one after another and read them. never seen anything like that in my life. you've got to have people who are going to stand -- >> other than general mattis. >> and harold ford -- >> the former ceo of exxonmobil,
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former ceo of one of the most important funds on wall street, wilbur ross -- >> we could tell who was going to succeed on the hill and who was going to fail on the hill depending on who they had around them. there were also yes, boss, yes, boss, yes, boss, types. we would always mock and ridicule those guys. we had one guy who would always have people around him and a staff member and i would always laugh because one guy said, i'll tell you who it is afterwards, walking to the house floor and a guy nudges me and says, do you know who they call him back in his home district? i go no, no, what's that. tell me, i'd love to know. they say when they see him shopping, they go, there's the congressman that keeps his word. >> oh, god. okay. >> i said -- >> i know who you're talking about. >> i have to go to the trash can and throw up. >> since you're going to launch into this, we also have the
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newly minted washington bureau chief. julie pace. >> julie -- >> julie, you look fabulous today. >> -- you are the most -- the most brilliant and gleaming and effervescent and intellectually charged person we have all ever met before. >> the president started out -- >> but who needs that, mika? that's the question. who needs that? >> don'ten. here's how the president started talking about himself because it's not just his little people he has talk about himself. he likes to talk about himself, too. here's president trump. >> i will say that never has there been a president, with fewer exceptions, in the case of fdr, he had a major depression to handle, who's passed more legislation, who's done more things than what we've done. i think we've been about as active as you can possibly be and at just about a record-setting pace. >> fact-check, julie pace --
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>> not true. >> one of the five lies a day? >> is that true? >> it's not true. there's been a lot of action, certainly. there are a lot of days at the white house that feel pretty frantic and busy. a lot of executive orders the president has signed. when you really dig into the substance of them, a lot are for show, a lot create commissions and studiys to look at issues. on big ticket items, health care at the top of the list, that hasn't had a lot of traction. tax reform is dead in the water on the hill right now. putting yourself in the same category with someone like fdr is a pretty bold move on the president's part. >> look at the legislation fdr passed the first 100 days. look at what newt gingrich passed, newt who has short-term memory loss these days when it comes to mueller, but look at what was passed the first 100 days in that congress.
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what major piece of legislation has donald trump had passed and signed? >> well, there hasn't been a major piece of legislation. >> i mean, when you say that, i mean like -- >> maybe half a piece? >> nine major pieces of legislation? >> he said there's so much -- >> he said more than anybody else. >> is he mixing it up with executive orders -- >> meek kashika, i just want th numbers. how many major pieces of legislation have been passed, over or under five? >> under. >> over or under three? >> under. >> over or under one? >> i would say under. >> well, okay, that would -- >> so then he -- >> just calling him cornfused. >> he's passed no legislation to move the country forward. what they have passed and what he may be trying to take credit
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for, they passed a bunch of bills rolling back legislation under obama. that's going backwards, not in my opinion, not forward? >> that technically legislation? >> it is technically legislation. >> so, general mattis, though, stood alone doing what you were supposed to do if you serve this country and you get a paycheck from the people of the united states of america. he talked about serving others. he talked about being in service of others and not about himself. let's roll that tape. >> president, it's an honor to represent the men and women for the department of defense and we're grateful for the sacrifices our people are making in order to strengthen our military, our diplomats always negotiate from the position of strength. thank you. >> thank you. >> there you go.
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>> you need more of that, people talking about the sacrifices and the selflessness of people in the military. people who do their jobs each and of day and don't require adulation around a table. my god, that was embarrassing. >> it was sick. sick is the word. it is also deeply un-american to turn a cabinet meeting for the president of the united states in the white house into a cheerleading routine where everybody is supposed to go around and praise him. general mattis, how wonderful general mattis focused on the troops he is serving. but donald trump doesn't understand is, so many things, but the first thing is, he is serving the american people. he is working for the people not only that voted for him but the people that didn't vote for him. what his obsession should be is not getting praise from those people, but doing everything he
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can to help the working class people that voted for him and also voted for barack obama and the rest of americans who need this economy to grow at more than 2%. who if he believes he can help them by tax reform, he needs to fight hard. and that entire thing should have been orchestrated, how do we get real tax reform passed to help working class and middle class americans and small business owners and people that hire working class americans and get them back to work. get money from offshore, get it down here bring wages up. if he wanted to talk about immigration reform, to make sure working class americans weren't competing with too many low wage workers. that's fine. but don't make it a cheerleading session about yourself. that's not why americans voted for this man. if you're a cabinet member, come on. come on!
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you owe us more than that. we pay for your salary, too. stand up for yourself. have dignity. and if he doesn't want you around because you stand up for yourself and have dignity, then leave. still ahead on "morning joe," the nation's top lawyer representing himself today in front of the senate intelligence committee. we'll preview the tough line of questioning that awaits attorney general jeff sessions on capitol hill. >> i wonder if he'll correct himself a second time. that would be remarkable. yeah, i know i screwed up one time and forgot this, but this is the last time i'm going to do that. >> maybe. >> we'll see. first, here's bill karins with a check on the forecast. >> well, let me addition i want to talk about the heat wave. first i have to show you these pictures from wyoming. this tornado video we just got in. that was a barn that was destroyed. look at the wind ripping it apart and circulating the
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debris. it didn't move very quickly either. only two injuries yesterday. they were minor, no fatalities. 30 tornadoes reported, wyoming, colorado and nebraska and southern portions of south dakota. that was pretty incredible. let's talk about the heat wave. we have the hot, humid conditions from texas through the plains all the way to the east coast. many record highs including boston, new york, washington, cleveland included. today new york city, 97. one of the hot places in the can country will be new york city. dallas right there, too, at 98. memphis at 97. you get the picture. changes will be coming. showers and thunderstorms will be cooling off the northeast later today. look what happens thursday and friday. 70s for new york. d.c., low 80s. enjoyable, cool conditions will arrive after the three-day heat wave. the same storm that produced the stormy just showed you will be affecting the minnesota and dakotas again. 10 million people at risk. if we get a tornado it will be
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likely between fargo and sioux falls, western sections of minnesota is the biggest issues. for those on the west coast, you're still enjoying cool conditions with showers in the inner mountain west. last day of early summer heat wave. 70s will feel so nice by the time we get to thursday. you're watching "morning joe." my business was built with passion... but i keep it growing by making every dollar count. that's why i have the spark cash card from capital one. with it, i earn unlimited 2% cash back on all of my purchasing. and that unlimited 2% cash back from spark means thousands of dollars each year going back into my business... which adds fuel to my bottom line. what's in your wallet?
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attorney general jeff sessions will likely face tough questions from the senate today about his contacts with russian officials and what role he played in the firing of james comey. a spokeswoman said, quote, he believes it is more important for the american people to hear the truth directly from him. members of the intelligence committee are particularly interested in a pair of undeclared meetings between sessions and the russian
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ambassador, sergey kislyak. now there are reports of a third meeting at washington's mayflower hotel during a campaign event during april. senator al franken discusses how it may have been discovered. >> for seven weeks after he gave this false testimony, he didn't correct it. didn't correct it until the washington post actually said that he had met with kislyak a couple times. we asked specifically about this meeting at the mayflower and other meetings in a private letter to the director that we've now made public. he'll probably explain whether this third meeting was an actual meeting. they've intercepted some contacts from kislyak and his people. kislyak may have been exaggerating the meeting, you know, because he wanted to look important. >> that's understandable. >> i met with jeff sessions -- >> well, let me ask -- >> you're an important ambassador. >> and in june, a doj spokesperson saying sessions
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didn't have any private side conversations with russian officials at the mayflower. >> also claimed the doj claimed an fbi employee advised sessions he did not have to disclose meetings with foreign ambassadors that took place during his time in the senate, which could, you know, muddle things up a little bit. >> so, julie pace, i'm addition you know, i've been doing this -- i've been around washington officials for 25 years. you've been around -- i mean, you're so great. you could have just been around for three minutes and you were spectacular. you don't need 25 years. i usually know when i'm being played and when i'm being spun. i have to tell you, when i talk to white house officials off the record where they're really talking to me, they just think our best option is to go great to the senate, talk to the senate, we have nothing to hide. i'm talking about a lot of the staff members who keep saying, there is no collusion. when word gets out, the media is
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going to look stupid. it sounds like jeff sessions feels the same way. he wants to go and talk to them and let him hear for himself. are you picking up the same vibe from your sources? >> yeah, i am. i think this is important for sessions. sessions is caught right now because he had these meetings he initially didn't disclose and then there's been a lot of speculation about this possible third meeting. we do know sessions and kislyak and other now-white house officials were at president trump's big campaign speech on foreign policy at the mayflower hotel last spring. we do know they were in the same place. there's been a lot of speculation whether they had a side conversation, whether there was a private meeting, whether kislyak was embellishing his conversation with sessions. the attorney general can't get beyond that speculation until he stands in front of his former senate colleagues, under oath, and tells them what happened
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there. he can't get past that. if nothing happened, this is an important moment for him to say, nothing happened. coming up on "morning joe," apparently federal judges read twitter, too. the ninth circuit knocks down the travel ban, saying the president's own tweets undermined his argument. law professor jonathan turley joins us next on "morning joe." ♪
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the ninth circuit court of appeals unanimously upheld a judge by a judge from hawaii. the judges argued the president exceeded the scope of the authority delegated to him by congress. they also disputed the president's claim that there weren't adequate safeguards in place to keep terrorists out of the u.s. the judges cited president trump's tweets from earlier this month in which he declared, we need a travel ban for certain dangerous countries, along with comments by white house press secretary sean spicer that trump's tweets are considered official statements by the president. >> let's bring in law professor from george washington university jonathan turley. jonathan, at what point --
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certainly no surprise this came from the ninth circuit. it has been a surprise from other circuits. when are they going to stop knocking around in the circuits and go straight to the supreme court? >> yeah, i think we're there. this was an interesting opinion. it was well written. i disagree with it. i still think they're trying a bit too hard to rule against the president. i do thing he has very good arguments to make in the supreme court. but, joe, inc. we're there. i think the fourth circuit and ninth circuit both give a broad platform for the court to look at this. i do think that the administration's arguments. the problem is the president keeps becoming a witness against himse himself. >> i was going to ask you that. before his latest round of tweets i was going to say there are few powers the constitution grants the president in a more
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unambiguous way than immigration and the protection of borders and the very thing this case fits neatly in all four corners of this case. but after those tweets, the latest round of tweets, suddenly i thought he gave the supreme court a back door to get out of this. where do you think we stand, that's right, we need a travel ban, all caps, for dangerous countries. just said that on june 5th. how does that impact what should have been a slam dunk case for donald trump and one i predicted would be a 6-3 at least? >> well, it must be bizarre for the lawyers. it's like a presidential version of death by cop. every time you seem to make advances, the president seems to stand up and say, shoot me, shoot me. you can't make much progress like this. many predicted the nooibt circuit would pick up that tweet. it did. it's just not clear what the president is trying to
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accomplish here. it's hard to believe he wants to prevail if he keeps on making these type of statements. having said that, i think the white house has a point that the court is being a bit fast and loose on previous cases, the president's inherent authority. i thought the ninth circuit case was quite interesting. i kept on -- while reading it i kept thinking, wow, you're trying awfully hard. you know, you're making this distinction about how you've shown that the countries are dangerous not the individuals that live in them. and, frangly, by the end of the decision i was not that convinced. >> i happened to agree with you several weeks ago but the opponents of this ban from the white house have stated all along that the president's true intentions -- true intentions of this ban were a, b and c, without describing, and the president early on when his team said it was not -- he has actually indicated it is.
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all of his tweets have suggested it is. so, i'm of a different opinion now. i think the opponents of this have a stronger argument than they did several weeks ago for the single reason that president trump continues to tweet. so, if he stopped tweeting, perhaps it would be different but how do you make the same argument today when it seems president trump has enumerated all the opponent's bans in front of the court? >> you make a great point. there's only so much water the court will carry for you if you're working against your own case. having said that, both the fourth and ninth circuit marginalize cases of the supreme court that i think will bother many of the justices. for example, the fourth circuit relies on campaign statements will be of great concern not just for conservatives on the court but liberals. you're absolutely right. have you these continual perry mason moments, people jumping up, in this case the president, saying stuff that is not
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helpful. what's ironic is they currently have a team that's pretty darn good. i was critical of the first round of lawyers. this is not helping. >> jonathan turley, thank you very much. coming up on "morning joe," nbc's hallie jackson live from capitol hill ahead of today's big testimony by jeff sessions before the senate intel committee. plus, former justice department spokesman matt miller joins "morning joe" in a moment. a millie dresselhaus doll! happy birthday, sweetie!
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i think he's considering, perhaps, terminating the special counsel. i think he's weighing that option. i think it's pretty clear by what one of his lawyers said on television recently. i personally thing it would be a very significant mistake, even though i don't think there's a justification, and even though -- i mean, here you have -- >> you don't think there's a justification for? >> for a special counsel in this case.
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>> that was news max ceo christopher ruddy yesterday saying president trump may be thinking of firing special counsel robert mueller. last night press secretary sean spicer didn't exactly deny ruddy's claim saying, quote, mr. ruddy never spoke to the president regarding this issue. with respect to this subject, only the president or his attorneys are authorized to comment. joining us now addition. >> >> the people in the administration were quick to reach out to me to say chris ruddy doesn't speak for this administration. >> did they say it's not true? >> they're not going to say anything is not true with president trump being president of the united states. what i have heard from anybody is the president didn't speak to him on this matter and he doesn't speak for the president. >> but i think ruddy is now saying he spoke to good sources, so -- >> listen, all i can tell you is, other than the president, i spoke to three sources are about as high as it gets in the white house over the past 12 hours.
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>> it's not true? >> every one said the same thing. ruddy does not speak for the president and the president never said that. now, all three of them could be lying to me. i don't think so. >> joining us now -- >> maybe ruddy -- he's got all these weird relationships where he says i haven't talked to so and so in six months and then you find out he talks to so and so that day. i'm sure he'll talk to chris ruddy today. >> joining us, elise jordan. >> this is very important. it's going to be the most important question asked throughout the day. how great is mika brzezinski? >> pretty awesome. >> i love that dress. i would be very happy to borrow that dress. >> well, biana has this and told me to get it. >> how honored are you to be here in her presence? isn't it a blessing? >> it's more funny when we do it to you. nbc legal correspondent ari melber. >> blessed, blessed.
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>> capitol hill justice department spokesperson and msnbc justice and security analyst matthew miller. also nbc chief white house correspondent, hallie jackson. hallie, we'll start with you. chris ruddy firing back at the white house, what is he saying? >> he's essentially saying, yeah, i'm one of the few allies you have left. don't try to undermine me. in a statement to nbc news, basically pushing back on the pushback from sean spicer talking about the source he he has spoken with regarding this apparent consideration of the president firing potentially bob mueller, as mr. ari will explain, the president doesn't have the authority to do that. in the sense i get from talking with sources over the last 10, 12 hours since this ruddy news broke is the president, as you guys knows, often does this spit-balling. he's on the phone at night, talking with his pals back at new york. the sense that's been conveyed to me is this is a president trying to show that he can flex his muscles a little bit to say, hey, i do have the authority, i do have the power in this situation, but whether he really
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is or not considering really actually firing bob mueller is still certainly up in the air. at least, again, that's the sense we're getting. >> what's the impact of that? i hate to play this game since all the white house officials are saying he's not going to do it. obviously, chris ruddy isn't going to go out and say something that isn't meant to be sent up as a trial balloon and the white house shoots it down immediately. this would not be the first administration to do that. but since they even started to bring it up, let me ask you, what is the impact of firing bob mueller? >> first of all -- >> at this point we're in saturday night massacre. >> it would be saturday afternoon if we were getting close to them even considering doing something like this. the first rule of constitutional and federal law that the president should learn is he doesn't have this personal u.n. tear power. unlike, say, dropping a bomb,
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which the president can pretty much do exclusively alone, the current federal rules bar this. none other than rod rosenstein explained this under oath saying the president himself can't fire bob mueller. we can play that. >> could have been fired by the president because he was the united states attorney. robert mueller cannot because he's protected by the special counsel regulation. even though it's theoretically true there are circumstances where he could be removed by the acting attorney general, which for this case at this time is me, your assurance of his independence is robert mueller's integrity and andy mccabe's integrity and -- >> so, rod is saying the president cannot, is that correct? >> bingo. rod is saying the president cannot do this. unlike labor secretary, defense secretary, president may be brainstorming what he can do -- >> this is all irrelevant because rod rosenstein is not
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going to fire bob mueller. >> that's a prediction or possibility. this is how i would put it. the president can call up news max or not call up news max, but the president can brainstorm with someone, maybe i should start levitating and that would be useful and i would have zero gravity abilities and an adviser or someone will tell the president, you don't have that power. what could happen, the other part of your question, joe? it's always possible a white house tries to change the rules so they would take the federal rules that currently put this power only in the hands of the acting doj official, in this case rosenstein, and try to take it back to the white house, cancel those rules or ask rosenstein to do it. if he doesn't do it, he can fire him -- >> that's where we get into the saturday night massacre territory where he tells rod rosenstein to fire bob mueller and rosenstein says, hell no. then he would fire rosenstein and do the most mixonian thing,
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find somebody to fire bob mueller. i cannot imagine the political earthquake that would cause with a fault line right under the president president's oval office desk. >> that's right. but it's hard to imagine a president firing an fbi investigator investigating him. we're already in unchartered territory. the most likely way it would happen is for him to ask or direct rod rosenstein to do it. he could ask jeff sessions to do it. he's recused under his own authority. he can unrecuse himself at any time. one of the big questions today for rosenstein, will you carry out any order from the president to fire bob mueller? one of the reasons the saturday night massacre happened, one of the reasons elliott richardson resigned because in his confirmation hearing to congress
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he pledged, i will not interfere with special counsel. i think we need to hear from both justice officials, attorney general and deputy attorney general are on the hill today, we need to hear from him the same kind of assurances that they're not addition they would not fall addition they would not carry out this kind of order from the president. >> perhaps hope springs eternal too much for me. perhaps i'm too optimistic but i really, elise, find it hard to believe that that wouldn't be the line crossed, where mitch mcconnell and paul ryan and republican leaders on the hill would say, enough. >> i don't know. >> enough. >> i don't know. i'm so cynical at this point. i'd like to be somewhat hopeful but the line keeps moving. weave let the line move way too many times before. so, i really -- i don't know. we've got to see if the republicans care more about their power or if they care about the constitution. >> joe, to use your words, we expect more from our 6-year-old children. we really do. i don't say that in a way to be -- >> i think what i said was, and
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i've what i've said before is we would not put up from our 6-year-old children -- >> never. >> -- what a lot of people are putting up with from the president of the united states, as far as telling the truth or being disrespectful -- >> undermining people, being unpredictable. >> again, there's no way the republican congress would not see massive cracks in their support. >> i hope you're right. >> if someone like bob mueller were fired. >> at what point do republicans in congress accept they're not going to get anything done in complete unity with this president? they have a better chance of getting bills through -- i mean, he'll sign at the end of the day -- if they just operate on their own. paul ryan and mitch mcconnell should be heading to the white house and telling donald trump where the power is now. he's diminished his power so much. >> it's not like the president is sitting at 56%. he's sitting at 36% in his latest gallup poll. disapproval rating is record
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high. >> that's been going on for weeks. >> it's getting worse by the day. it's getting worse -- those are really steve bannon's numbers as well. he co--owns them with the president of the united states. the numbers have gone down since he fired james comey. these numbers will crater into the high 20s. >> doesn't that raise the other question, i'm like you, i like to be optimistic about america. i prefer to get up, have my coffee and hope something good's going to happen today. when you outline those numbers, though, it makes me wonder, knowing all that, what is so much worse than that that the white house is willing to look so guilty and take those steps? i don't know the answer. maybe it's just ego and not having done anything wrong. but there's a lot of smoke around the idea there's a willingness to intercede in these open inquiries in a way to suggest that maybe they're worried about something worse that we don't know. >> actually, that is -- that is, mika, i think, where we may be. because you sit there and you
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say, it makes no sense to fire the fbi director. no sense to set it up in such a clumsy way. what could be worse than that? what could be worse is donald trump is trying to hide something. and then they start pulling at a string and they start hiring people who are actually effective investigators. donald trump starts to panic and he sets up trial balloons. what if i fire bob mueller? because, obviously, we've talked about billions before, they're in that final scene of "billions" where they're talking about pulling that string. maybe for donald trump having a 24% approval rating is not as bad as the alternative, having bob muler and his investigators find that one thing that keeps donald trump awake all night. >> look at what we know about him. we've spent a lot of time with him. you know, at this point, i will put money on the fact that he will try to fire bob mueller. there are no tapes.
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secondly, the reason why he is still so unbelievably out of sync with what even seems like reality and congress as well, look at that cabinet meeting. that says it all. >> the delusion to say he's passed more legislation than anybody but fdr. >> he lied in that cabinet meeting. he did not pass any legislation. more so, he's surrounded by a bunch of -- i'll let joe find the word, people, i'll just say, who are feeding into that delusion and making that delusion sicker. >> mitch mcconnell has a job to do. and he's got -- he's elected by members of the senate to serve republican members of the senate. paul ryan has a job to do in the house. >> so does the cabinet. >> at some point, they need to step forward and do what elise has said and what identify longed believe, and that is, take control of their own destiny. and say, donald trump, you're on
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your own. we're going to pass tax reform. if you want to sign what we decide we're going to pass, then you sign tax reform. we're going to pass regulatory reform. we're going to overturn obamacare and set up our own health care system. and donald trump, if you want to sign our bills, you can. by the way, we're not going to let you obstruct justice. we're not bringing our party down with a guy that was a life-long democrat who only joined our party in 2011 when he discovered birtherism. >> when you strip the bark off this story, this latest story, you know, will donald trump fire bob mueller, there is only one source for stories in the trump administration, and that's donald trump. and there's no telling from hour to hour where he's going to go because for the first time in the history of this country, we have a singular presidency. a singular presidency. a man who operates by himself, for himself.
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who puts himself above the country. >> he would be far more comfortable in turkey. >> hallie has a story. >> let's talk about sessions today. what are we expecting? >> well, listen, the line out of sessions' aides, he wants to testify in the open. he's eager to put some questions to rest. inc. you'll watch for big questions, number one, about this meeting the justice department says he never had with the russian ambassador at mayflower hotel. second, he's expected to respond to what james comey said last week regarding comey's firing. what was sessions' role? what conversations did he have with the president in private? number three, when you step back and look big picture at the gop strategy here, we're just getting a look now obtained by nbc news these talking points to try to push this messaging. they're going to say the trump administration has nothing to hide, guys, because sessions is so eager to cooperate here. they're also going to argue this
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is is part of a smear campaign by members of the media and democrats as well to besmirch jeff sessions' crystal clear reputation here. that said, look what happened the last time sessions was on the hill for his nomination hearing. he said things he later had to go back and correct the record. that's likely to come up as well. it's a big day. not as big as thursday but you can still expect to see intense media attention. this will dominate the headlines this afternoon. the president is not even going to be in washington. he'll be on the road in wisconsin, talking about workforce development, talking health care with members of congress at the white house, but this continues to be dominant. >> what are we expecting today in the hearing? >> i think sessions will talk about his meetings, two or three, we don't know. inc. he says two with ambassador kislyak. but what i actually expect is, you know, the thing that is most concerning, so i think addition i find it hard to believe jeff sessions sat down with a russian ambassador and conspired to tip
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the election. but i do think there's a problem at doj in his signing off on james comey's firing. if he knew that was over his handling of the russian investigation, that's a massive scandal scandal for jeff sessions. is he going to answer that question or say i'm not going to talk about my conversations with the president, i'm not going to talk about my conversations with others at the white house and i think if we don't hear clean answer from him on that, on what he knew when he signed off on that firing, that's a pretty clear signal there's something there that he doesn't want us to find out about. >> all right. >> matt. >> matt thank you so much. let's go to dominic chu. what are you looking at today. >> watching ride sharing giant uber continuing to see a shakeup of the top ranks the internal inquiry handled by former attorney general eric holder looking into allegations of a hostile work environment and gender bias. a number of key executives have left the firm but uber has been working to add women to its highest ranks including the hires of former apple exec st.
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john as their chief brand officer and nestle executive will join the board of directors. travis kalanick is considering a leave of absence. on the jobs front mcdonald's is in hiring mode and wants summer help and a lot of it. it will try to hire a quarter of a million people for the summer season and if you're a teen or young adult try using snapchat. watching a mcdonald's recruiting video will give you a link to a job application, a snaplication. and the retail woes continue. also, though, but here's the balancing part about this, job losses still happening in the workplace. children's outlet gym worry filed for bankruptcy protection and will remain in business but as the process plays out it will close 450 stores which means a lot of jobs lost there. so mcdonald's hiring seasonal help, gymboree losing jobs, a lot of dynamics in the economy. >> the unemployment number down
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but the job participation rate, dom, pretty darn low. >> it is pretty darn low and one of the main concerns of a lot of people on wall street, whether this economy can sustain things if people don't get out there, really wanting a job and whether they can find it or not, guys. >> cnbc's dominic chu thank you very much. we've got much more on what could be a major day for the trump administration while jeff sessions prepares to go under oath. the president this morning is firing off tweet after tweet. after tweet. we'll have them. ♪ he came to the world justin the usual way ♪ ♪ but there were planes to catch and bills to pay ♪ ♪ so i moved my meeting saw him walk that day ♪ ♪ he was talking 'fore i knew it, and as he grew ♪ ♪ he'd say i'm gonna be like you, dad ♪ ♪ you know i'm gonna be like you ♪ ♪ and the cat's in the cradle and the silver spoon ♪
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i want to thank everybody for coming. i thought we would go around the room. how did we do on the sunday show yesterday? >> your tone was perfect. you were right on message. >> michele, how did my hair look coming out of the gym this morning? >> you have great hair. nobody has better hair. >> before we go any further i want to say thank you for the opportunity and blessing to serve your agenda. >> blessed. >> this is really -- >> donald trump's attorney general about to go under oath but the president is going to channel his anger through twitter. he started this morning. >> he did. writing the fake news media has never been so wrong or so dirty. purposely incorrect stories and phony sources to meet their agenda of hate, sad. then he posted, quote, well as predicted the ninth circuit did
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it again, ruled against the travel ban. >> so he caps travel ban again. >> travel ban. >> after the white house said for six months -- >> it's not a travel ban. >> four months it wasn't a travel ban. >> i want to say -- >> by the way his -- general kelly said, his director of homeland security said a couple weeks ago it wasn't a travel ban. and now he's capping travel ban. >> his tweets derail the ninth circuit ruling in his favor by any stretch of the imagination. cited his tweets ruling against him. >> we have been told that that is official policy. it is now officially a travel ban. >> i also think that while we can have fun with this, what he said before they went around the table and sucked up because he required that, and i say that in all seriousness, except for mattis, was frightening, i think what he said -- >> yeah. >> lying about the accomplishments of this presidency is serious. >> so a little later donald trump tweeted this, attorney general lynch made law enforcement decisions for
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political purposes. gave hillary clinton a free pass and protection. totally illegal! >> and finally, fake news is at an all-time high where is their apology to me for all of the incorrect stories? >> where is your apology to america? and not caring about the country at all? >> what's interesting he talks about fake news when he's the biggest purveyor of fake news and he actually embraces people who willingly tell lies and make up things on websites and radio shows. >> i wonder if he believes the false information that he's pur vaing. i have started to wonder. >> mike? >> i think what he's on to, clearly, is he's going to go to war daily against the media. against the mainstream media. and you know what, part of it is going to work for him. part of it is going to work. >> final thoughts. >> there's an investigation on and it seems the president and some of his allies want us to talk about everything other than where that investigation is
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headed. >> mika, your final thought. >> i'll defer to you. i've said enough. >> your final thought. i honored to be here. >> i'm really concerned. >> what concerns you the most? >> there's a level of what elise said that goes into two dangerous areas. either not being well or being -- having ill intent. those are the options. >> well, all i can say is when we've been here 10,000 years, bright shining of the sun will have no to sing don's praise we will be back tomorrow morning. >> same bat time. >> same bat channel. >> adam west. >> a great tweet over the weekend i forget who wrote it -- >> that's a tweet worth reading. >> all the other batmen, george clooney, michael keaton should go to adam west's funeral as if they do when presidents die. >> they should. >> all the former presidents
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should attend. >> all the former batmen. >> in uniform. >> that does it for us for now, joe. >> thank you so much. mike, you're blessed. >> blessed. >> blessed. >> very blessed. >> blessed as always. >> do you know what we're really blessed by, we are now going to toss it to the greatest news person since edward r. murrow, so honored and blessed to even be in her shadow. the fact that they let us actually lead in -- >> we're sorry stephanie. >> stephanie ruhle. >> perhaps the greatest hour of television. >> picks up the coverage right now. >> thank you. >> joe scarborough has become the greatest troller of all time. good morning. i'm stephanie ruhle. a lot of news to cover starting with the firing line. is robert mueller next. a close confident of donald trump drops this bombshell. >> i think he's considering perhaps terminating the special co

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